View Full Version : -=Game=- Dragon Tamers Battle Range version 19! (M.A. by Pidgeot)

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Lady Vulpix
13th December 2002, 09:28 AM
Welcome to the new version of the Battle Range! Here are the rules. Please read them in order to avoid posting invalid battles and/or asking questions which are already answered here. Have fun!

¤ Everyone will describe the battles (or whatever is required), stating the levels of their pokemon before and after the event.

¤ Each trainer can battle 2 pokemon per scenario, and may use 1 or 2 pokemon per battle.

¤ You can use pokemon from the Dragon Tamers Adoption Center, Kanga's Hatchling Rescue Center, Pocket Monsters Breeding Center and Pokemon Zoo.

¤ All trainers who use pokemon from Adoption Centers other than Dragon Tamers must tell us where they got their pokemon (on the pokemon's first battle). That's to make sure you're not making them up.

¤ Unevolved Pokemon learn the same moves as in the game.

¤ Pokemon evolve just like in the game, except for trading/happiness-evolving pokemon, who can evolve with a Genetic Accelerator Gene.

¤ Evolved Pokemon learn the same moves as their unevolved versions, plus the new ones. Example, Ponyta can't learn Fury Attack, but Rapidash can.

¤ A Pokemon can learn a TM every 10 levels (that is, every multiple of 10).

¤ Bred-On moves are allowed (1 per pokemon), but once you've chosen your pokemon's bred-on move you must not change it.

¤ Hidden Power is allowed just like other TMs. But at the moment your pokemon learns it, you must say what type it will be and not change it.

¤ If you use 2 pokemon in a battle, each of them will gain half the experience (levels).

¤ Stamps can be earned for writing interesting and descriptive battles. You can exchange them for Stones, Genetic Accelerator Genes and other items at the Dragon Tamers Reward Center.

¤ Remember: no killing your opponents (human or pokemon).

THE CURRENT SCENARIO IS ON PAGE: 17 (http://www.pokemasters.net/forums/showthread.php?s=&postid=231033#post231033).

Lady Vulpix
13th December 2002, 09:33 AM
Tara gets 30 stamps for writing this scenario! ¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢
All those who have requested time extensions can still write for the previous one.

ø¤º°`°º¤ø,¸¸,ø¤º°`°º¤ø,¸¸, ø¤º°`°º¤ø ,¸¸,ø¤º°`°º¤ø,¸¸,ø¤º°`°º¤ø

Christmas Scenario

Seeing as Christmas is fast approaching, Christmas fever soon hits
the Dragon Tamers as everybody begins to put up their trees and buy
presents for one another. In the spirit of Christmas, a big Christmas
party is being held for all Dragon Tamers. Everybody is invited. The party
starts late in the afternoon and there is a big dinner and desert later
on. Also a few bands will be coming to perform – but are still

Also as a special feature for the party, there will be pokemon brought,
especially for battling. These pokemon can only handle two battles from
each trainer though otherwise they will be much too worn out.

Level 10 – Under

Aipom Lvl 6 + 1
Meowth Lvl 10 + 2


Marril Lvl 16 + 1
Pidgeotto Lvl 25 + 2


Sandshrew Lvl 33 + 1
Ampharos Lvl 40 + 2


Skiploom Lvl 47 + 1
Scizor Lvl 55 + 2


Graveler Lvl 63 +1
Arcanine Lvl 70 + 2


Espeon Lvl 78 + 1
Steelix Lvl 85 + 2


Feraligatr Lvl 90 + 1
Alakazam Lvl 96 + 2

The Pet Keeper
13th December 2002, 03:31 PM
this is my battle for the pyrogon scenario
(My POV)
“No, No, NO!” Illusion cried out at Silver. “Now watch me once again, carefully,” Illusion instructed Silver and then Illusion teleported a short distance. Silver tried to mimic Illusion, but he only got a blurry for awhile and nothing more happened. Illusions loudly sighed and shake her head.
“We’ll try again then,” Illusion said and then she teleported once more. Illusion had noticed that Silver only could teleport if someone scared him and when he did teleport, he never knew exactly where he would pop up next time. Illusion had told Silver that teleporting was something extremely important to master for all Abras, Kadabras and Alakazams, and now she insisted to learn Silver to teleport in a proper way. And that was what they had being doing for over three hours.
I and Sleepy was sitting on a muddy lawn close by and watched Illusion and Silver teleporting. Unfortunate, Silver appeared to not that interested as Illusion was.
“Can I take a break..?,” Silver meekly said to Illusion after awhile.
“Do as you want,” Illusion shortly replied, and Silver slowly walked to me and sat down at my lap with a sigh. I opened my backpack and handed Silver a sandwich, I thought that he must being hungry. I was just going to call over Illusion too, but she walked around in deep thoughts so I didn’t want to interrupt. Suddenly Illusion got a sly face expression and teleported. I wondered where she went, but in the next second she appeared behind Silver and then she rapidly and loudly cried out “BOO!!”
Silver squeaked, but then everything got blurry around me. I got a creepy tickling feeling in my entire body, but then the feeling disappeared and the surroundings got clear again. To my big surprise, the grass was gone and replaced with red coloured, rocky ground. I just stupidly said “Uh..?,” and looked around. It looked like we where in some sort of empty river with high, rocky hills at each side of us.
“How did you do that?!” I heard Illusion yell behind me, and Silver rapidly yelled back at Illusion; “Why did you do that for?!!”
“What happened?!” I shouted as loud I could in order to make Illusion and Silver keep quiet and listen to me. Luckily it worked.
“Silver teleported us!” Illusion said.
“It’s not my fault” Silver unhappily squeaked.
“Accident” I stated and picked up Silver and realized how big and heavy he had grown, he was definitely not a baby any longer. Sleepy grunted at me to get some attention and then gave me a wondering look.
“Illusion, can’t you just teleport us back?” I asked Illusion.
“No, that’s the problem” Illusion said with a very odd voice “I’ve always wanted to learn how to teleport others, but…”. Illusion looked down on the ground and shot away a tiny pebble with one of her toes. Illusion kept quiet and turned her back at us and started to walk away throw the ravine. I silently followed. Illusion seamed to be jealous at Silver, but maybe mostly angry with herself.

The area where we walked throw was very quiet; the only thing that broke the silence was when small stones or sand fell from the edge of the narrow valley. Silver got bored and fell asleep after awhile, so I let him go back to his pokéball. “This ground is hurting my tail,” Illusion suddenly said and glanced at me. Just as other Kadabras, Illusion had a huge tail that she was dragging around and the rocky ground must being painful to pull around her tail upon.
“Maybe you want to go back to your pokéball too?” I asked Illusion
“Will you be okay with that?” Illusion replied.
“Sleepy can be my guardian,” I said and smiled down at Sleepy who was pushing herself as close she could to one of my legs. Sleepy made a huge and scary looking grin by happiness. This nasty looking smile together with Sleepys skinny body and glaring eyes gave me a sudden and unexpected sting of fear. I knew that there was no chance that Sleepy would hurt me, but right now she reminded me that she had been trained and raised by Team Rocket. Even Illusion took a fast and worried look at Sleepy and whispered something like “Right…” while she ironically nodded, but then she went back to her pokéball.
“Oh well, we better keep on going so we will get back home before it get dark” I said to Sleepy. Sleepys smile immediately disappeared.

I and Sleepy just kept on going, but it seamed like we weren’t getting anywhere. The two huge walls of rock and the cracky ground just looked the same like were we had started.
“Look,” Sleepy suddenly said and pointed at something far away in the open stone corridor. I thought it looked like a big green bush, but Sleepy must had a better eye sight then me because even if a green bush would be rare here, Sleepy wouldn’t point out such a thing. But as we closed up I saw that it absolutely wasn’t plant; it was a sleeping Tyranitar.
“Should be try to pass it?” I whispered to Sleepy. Sleepy unsurely nodded and we carefully kept on walking and hoped that we would not wake the Tyranitar. I gasped when I saw that the Tyranitar was awake after all, and she suspiciously looked at me with a big red eye. I and Sleepy had got too far to go back, so we just continued to pass the enormous creature. The Tyranitar followed us with her eyes but didn’t make any try to attack. Then I saw how a little head popped up behind the Tyranitars tail; it was a tiny Larvitar. I also saw that it was laying a half eaten Rhyhorn close to the Tyranitar. The tiny Larvitar was ripping small pieces of meat from the body and swallowed them. I just looked at the Larvitar and Tyranitar with stunned fascination, but Sleepy grabbed my hand and tried to make me walk faster.

Sleepy and I left the Tyranitar and Larvitar behind, and we were once again all alone in the valley. But that didn’t last long, as a whole bunch of Pyrogons came from nowhere and blocked our way.
“Of all pokémon species, what are Pyrogons doing here?” I whispered to Sleepy with confusion. One of the Pyrogons went out of the group and stood in front of me. It studied me, then Sleepy and then it spoke “Leave us alone, human!”
I accepted it to say something more but it didn’t
“I…I just want to pass” I questioningly said, I could not think of anything better to reply with.
“No! Just because your kind created us, you can not own us!” the Pyrogon stated.
“I just want to pass” I said very quietly, the Pyrogons had started to scare me.
“This is our home, and no humans are allowed here” The Pyrogon said with despite, but then it added “Nor their pokémon” and looked at Sleepy with disgust.
“I…” I started to say but got brutally cut off.
“Quiet!” the Pyrogon shouted and its word echoed in the valley. All the Pyrogons glared at me with hatred. I slowly took a step backwards and Sleepy followed my move, but the Pyrogons just kept on staring at me. The whole situation was very frightening and I had no idea how to get out of it. I took another step away from the Pyrogons, but they still didn’t do anything. A few seconds past but it felt like minutes and then, without any warning, all the Pyrogons attacked at the same time. They made some kind of horrible digital noise and when they moved at the same time they created a blinding white light. I got so scared I just throw up Sleepy on my back and ran.

I rushed throw the valley as fast I managed and I knew that I would never be able to keep that speed for so long. The Pyrogons didn’t make a sound when they moved except for that chattering noise which slowly got loader. I didn’t dare to turn around to look, but Sleepy muttered things like “closer” and “no idea”, but mosty of her words drowned in the digital prattle. I soon passed a large boulder that lay in the way and the Pyrogons got us out of sight for a moment. I stopped behind the rock and I fell down on my knees and put down Sleepy. I was too exhausted to run any more and I just sat there with sweat pouring down my face and tried to catch my breath. I tried to think out anything that could possibly save us from the wrath of Pyrogons. Calling out my other team mates would be useless, we would be totally out numbered anyway, and maybe they would be safe in the pokéballs.
“I’m…I’m sorry” I managed to say to Sleepy between my gasping, but she just looked at me with misbelieve. I knew that Sleerpy had always seen me as some sort of over mighty hero ever sense I lifted the pen that I signed her adoption form with, and now she had to see me in this broken condition.
“What taking them so long?” I moaned, and to my big surprise Sleepy actually replied “They want you to start running again. They enjoy hunting us”
“Do think this “is it”?” I sadly said.
“Maybe. Death is lurking everywhere, but I must say that we have survived even the darkest and weirdest situations” Sleepy said in a way just as we were chatting about the weather.
“Especially you” I said without thinking and regretted it right away. Sleepy looked straight into my eyes without saying anything. After awhile she turned away and said in a wondering voice “I’ve...been thinking of something…”
Sleepy turned back at me again and she looked really troubled.
“There’s a thing I have to do. Like a…task”
“A task? But when did you get such thing?!”
“I can’t tell you more right now, you are no ready yet. But I…I wonder if you would mind if I…” Sleepy waved with one hand just as she tried to drag the words out of her trout, “I want to change my name, or more likely add a name”
It wasn’t exactly what I expected her to say and I just looked at her with surprise. When Sleepy saw my reaction she rapidly added “Just don’t get me wrong, it’s not that I don’t respect your choice of name but...”
“I just don’t understand why. But it’s your choice” I said and shrugged. Sleepy was old enough to choose her own way.
“Can you call me...Nemesis instead of Sleepy? It’s a mark of the missions beginning”
“Nemesis…isn’t that another word for... revenge?”
Sleepy, or “Nemesis”, gave me a begging look to not ask anything more so I didn’t. She would not answer anyway, and maybe it was the best thing if I didn’t learn more about it. As “Nemesis” had told me, I wasn’t ready for it yet, but it didn’t make me less curious or confused. I didn’t like to think about Sleepy as Nemesis, but I had force myself into it.
“Wait here” Nemesis said and then she then walked with steady steps out of our cover and stopped on a spot were the Pyrogons easily could see her.
“What are you doing” I hissed but Nemesis didn’t react on my words. I tried to get up from my kneeling pose to get Nemesis back, but she hold me back with her psychic powers. And there, right in front of my eyes, I saw how it suddenly was standing another Drowzee close to Nemesis. They looked exactly the same and then a perfect copy of me appeared. My copy picked up the fake Drowzee and started to run throw the valley. In the next second the horrible noise and blinding light came back and could hear how all the Pyrongos passed both while they hunted our copies that Nemesis had created with her hypnotic powers. Nemesis returned and dragged me back behind the big rock.
“We should wait here” said Nemesis and glanced at me.

I and Nemesis didn’t dare to move again before the sunset had started. The red rocks that we were surrounded by got an extreme pink and yellow colour in the fading light.
We slowly started to search the area for a good place to spend the night; I had given up all hopes of coming back home today. After a long search Nemesis found a large cave. I supposed that it would not make much difference to sleep in the cave or outside, but it did feel a little bit safer to have something above the head. I and Nemesis just went into the cave to take a closer look and just as we entered I heard someone who cried out “Ha!” with triumph. I turned around and then I stood face to face with two Pyrogons.

One of the Pyrogons was much larger than the other one and it appeared to be the oldest one too. The bigger Pyrogon sent out a thunder wave soon as it understood who it was it had found. Nemesis got hit by the ray of light, but the Pyrogons attack didn’t harm her
“Hey, Nemi, electric attacks don’t work in here!”
“Nemi?” Nemesis muttered while she tried to dodge an ice beam, but she got her foot frozen to the ground. The smaller Pyrogon smiled with its entire face, but the older one just snickered “This don’t mean victory silly!” to the smaller Pyrogon.
Since Nemesis was stuck to the ground, I picked up Silvers pokéball and was just going to realise Silver. Nemesis saw what I was up to do and loudly cried out “Don’t do this to me!”
“You have no chance” I cried back, the only move Nemesis knew that didn’t needed physical contact was shadow ball and that would not harm the Pyrogons.
Nemesis started to make some really freaky moves with her hands and the younger Pyrogon, who didn’t understood that Nemesis was using a hypnotic move, fell asleep.
“Oh, so you put out the kid? Fearsome” The older Pyrogon said and gave Nemesis a nonchalant look. The Pyrogon’s colours suddenly got darker and when it was done with its sudden colour change, it was almost black.
“Guess my type?” The Pyrogon said, but I already knew that it had used its special conversation move and turned into a Dark-type pokémon. Nemesis foot had slowly stared to get de-frosted, but she was still ensnared. The Pyrogon was just going to blast off another ice beam, but just as it was going to let away its attack it got thrown away by a black shadow ball that Nemesis had created. The Pyrogon wasn’t really hurt but shaken, because this was not involved in its plans. I took the chance and ran over to Nemesis to help her with getting rid of the ice that trapped her. The Pyrogon was soon back on its feet, it was angry too and didn’t waste time on an ice beam and went straight on and tackled me. The Pyrogon was big and I had no chance to stay up. I landed on Nemesis, but the ice cracked with help of the Pyrogons slam and my fall. Nemesis, which was lying on her back, kicked the Pyrogons face with her healthy foot. I tried to help Nemesis up, but she couldn’t stand on the foot that had being frozen.
“I can’t feel my foot, it’s too cold” Nemesis coughed while she sent away another shadow ball at the Pyrogon. The Pyrogon replied with an ice beam. As I was standing so close to Nemesis, we both got hit by the beam.
“I think I need help after all...” Nemesis told me with disappointment.
“Unfortunate it’s too late” I moaned, my arm such as the pokéballs had frozen by the Pyrogons attack, but worse of all, I and Nemesis was stuck together. The Pyrogon laughed, told us how funny we looked and then it went away to wake up the other Pyrogon. I had my hand frozen to Nemesis shoulder and it all was covered with a big, heavy piece of cold ice, but our feet were still free. Both of the Pyrogons attacked us with tackle from two different directions, punching me and Nemesis to one way and the other.
“They playing with us” Nemesis hissed with anger. Then I got an idea and whispered my plan into Nemesis ear and hoped that the Pyrogond would not hear me “If we tackle back at them and uses the ice as a shield, we could maybe deal some damage and get rid of the ice at the same time”
Nemesis made a surprised but wicked grin and said “Let’s take the big one first”
Nemesis and I rammed the older Pyrogon with help of our weight and the solid ice we had upon our bodies. Nemesis couldn’t really walk with her damaged foot so we sort of danced around in the cave as we tried to keep our balance and hit any the Pyrogons at the same time. The two Pyrogons slowly got tired, but so were we and ours such as the Pyrogons attacks slowly got weaker. Then I fell over a rock that lay on the cave’s floor and we crashed down to the hard ground. The ice that kept us together smashed and we were free again. Nemesis sent out a shadow ball at the young Pyrogon. I was just going to say that the Pyrogon had not used conversation, but the little tired Pyrogon was thrown away by the pressure and hit the wall behind and got knocked out.
“No!” the larger Pyrogon cried out with fear when it saw what had happened to its partner. Nemesis didn’t care and just tossed away another shadow ball at the larger Pyrogon. The Pyrogon fell to the ground, Nemesis wiggled over the floor and soon she reached the laying Pyrogon and started to kick it where ever she could. The Pyrogon who was deeply upset and just wanted to see if its partner were okay didn’t even try to defend itself.
“Nemesis, stop” I said to Nemesis. She never knew when it was enough. Nemesis stopped attacking the Pyrogon, but then she glared at her opponent and hissed to it “If you ever…” while she was shaking her head and grinned by anger. I thought Nemesis was going to leave the Pyrogon alone but then she stomped the Pyrogon one last time.
“Go ahead and catch us, just don’t kill my sibling” begged the older Pyrogon while it pushed the small Pyrogon so it woke up.
“No, I have never caught any pokémon in my entire life, and I won’t do it now either. All I ask you is to let us alone. We just trying to leave the mountains” I said and helped the younger Pyrogon up. The older Pyrogon gave me cunning but scared look and said “I just hope you are telling the truth, if you don’t I and the other Pyrogons will be back”. Then the two Pyrogons just left the cave.

Now when everything at last seamed to be clam, I let asked the other pokémon to get out of their pokéballs. Then I, with some few inflicts by Nemesis, told them what had happened and what sort of situation we were in.
Then we shared the little water and the two sandwiches I still had in my backpack. It wasn’t much, and the water was warm and the sandwiches old, but it was all food we got.
We knew that the next day would be hard so we decided to get to sleep soon as possible. I lay down on the hard, rocky ground and used my backpack as a pillow. Suddenly my view was blocked by Nemesis’s face. “The ground is very uncomfortable” she said and it looked like she hoped that I would have any idea how to solve this problem. It was not strange that the ground hurt Nemesis so badly, she was quite skinny and that made her body very fragile. I gave Nemesis my jacket to sleep on and offered my belly as cushion, which she gladly accepted. I crawled closer to Zed and hoped that it would help us to keep the heat, but I admit that I was a little bit scared that Zed would roll over me in hi sleep and crush me with his body weight. Silver and Titania was lying on Zed’s belly and they were going up and down for each breath Zed took. Or snoring was a better word; Zed wasn’t very quiet when he slept. Illusion lay alone close to the opening of the cave with her tail curled around her body. She was awake but she was so still it looked like she had being frozen in time. The moonlight got reflected in Illusions eyes and made them glow in a very mystical way, and she looked very lonely. I wanted to get over to her, but I felt that Nemesis had fallen asleep and didn’t wanted to wake her up, she really needed to rest.
I tried to sleep too, but my mind was too full of strange thoughts about everything that had happened this day. And that I was extremely hungry didn’t made the thing better, but at last I just cleared my mind and tried to think that everything would be better when I wake up.

“Anna? Anna?!” someone hissed straight into my ear. I forced myself to open my eyes and the first thing I saw was Illusions two sly looking, green eyes.
“Hussssh” She said and put one of her bony hands over my mouth. Then she said “Look” and pointed at the opening of the cave with her spoon. It was still night and it took a while before my eyes got use to the darkness but soon, with help of the moonlight, I could clearly see the shape of a Tyranitars body. “She’s hunting, if she’ll notice us we are dead meat” Illusion whispered with sarcasm. The Tyranitar sniffed the air in the cave our party was sleeping in. I was sure that it was the same Tyranitar as I and Nemesis had passed that day.
“We have to wake the others…” I whispered to Illusion. I carefully woke up Nemesis and we were just going to wake Zed when a horrible roar filled the cave. This woke up Zed, Titania and Silver at once, and Titania replied the Tyranitar with a tiny roar herself. Now the Tyranitar knew that it was something to eat in the cave and attacked with her full power and strength. The ground was shaking under us because of the Tyranitars heavy body and I could hear the huge creature’s heavy breath.
“Aie, I spy trouble” Zed just said while he got up from the ground. We all run with panic deeper into the cave without really knowing were we was going.
“Here, come on!” Illusion suddenly cried out and waved at us. It was hard to she her in all the darkness but both Zed and Nemesis appeared to be able to see her. But it was to dark too see why Illusion wanted us to get over there even for them, but it didn’t matter as we where trapped anyway. Zed grabbed my shoulder and pulled me away and as we got closer I could also see were Illusion was. Then I saw how Illusion just disappeared; I could barely believe that she just had left us here. We soon got to the spot where Illusion had being standing and we all understood where Illusion had gone; it was a crack in the solid stone that created a small corridor.
“Is this really a good idea?” I unsurely said, but in the next second Zed bumped me into the crack with his belly and then he entered the crack himself. It wasn’t a second to late because in the next moment the Tyranitar found us. The crack wasn’t big enough for the Tyranitar to enter, but she got her head into the crack and roared at us with frustration. Silver moaned and curled up on the ground and Illusion had sweat poring down her face, but Titania just growled back at the Tyranitar with all her might. After awhile the Tyranitar got tired so she just lay down on the ground outside the crack and waited for us to give up.
“What should we do now?” Illusion rapidly said when she had calmed down a little. None of us got any time to reply because a tiny Larvitar entered the crack. The Larvitar attacked immediately, and as none of us were able to see anything clearly, we had no other option then run again. We got chased throw the crack-corridor by the Larvitar and we all got deeper into the mountain. Far away we heard the Tyranitar loudly call back her baby, and the Larvitar glared at us with hunger but then went back.
“What should we do now?” Illusion asked us as well as herself when we were sure that the Larvitar wouldn’t come back.
“Well, some light wouldn’t be wrong” I said. Everyone was quiet, but after awhile Silver unsurely said “But Anna, we don’t have any flashlight and none of us knows how to create light”
“Zed?” I asked and hoped that he would have any suggestion of what to do as he was the oldest of us.
“I…I guess the best thing is to keep on walking, It’s no idea to go back. It’s rare to find any pray here in the mountains so the Tyranitar will wait” Zed said. None had any other ideas so we did the only thing it seamed like we could do, keep on walking deeper into the crack without any light and without knowing were we would get.

We quietly went on straight ahead. Illusion was the one who had the strongest psychic powers that she used to identify the surroundings, so she took the front and was extremely alert on anything that could be dangerous. I and Zed followed; Silver was riding on Zed’s neck and Titania was cuddling around in my backpack. Silver sat backward so he could notice if something happened behind us. Nemesis walked by my side as close to me as she could, but also as far away as possible from the others.

Nemesis grew from lv.15 to lv.17

15th December 2002, 01:52 AM
Thanks for the stamps! I've been longing to see that line posted!

Tara gets 30 stamps for writing this scenario

I was more hoping for Thanks to Tara for writing this scenario but it doesnt matter!

Something just occoured to me...

I could've started my battle for this scenario a long ago like 2 weeks ago or something... instead of a few days ago.

I am sooo smart. ^_^


Lady Vulpix
15th December 2002, 09:15 AM
Well, it's not like you weren't writing, right? I wish I had enough free time to write now. Well, I'm sure I'll have some from December 27th until February starts. (Yes, I'll have to take a final in February, which is yet another reminder that I must NEVER take 3 subjects at once again).
Anna, your story was nice even if it had some grammar and vocabulary mistakes. Take 12 stamps! ¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢

15th December 2002, 10:16 AM
Gabi you forgot Scizors level.

Lady Vulpix
15th December 2002, 10:37 AM
Oh, it's true! Tara, see what you make me do. :P
I've fixed it now.

15th December 2002, 10:41 AM
Now you forgot to put+2 next to it

Lady Vulpix
15th December 2002, 10:44 AM
How did you know it was +2? Well, it was anyway.
Ok, anything else?
You're entitled to a ¢.

15th December 2002, 10:54 AM
No, but I do have a suggestion.
Could we try 2 vs. 2 battles?

Lady Vulpix
15th December 2002, 11:09 AM
Yes, of course! Unless the scenario states the opposite, you can always do that.

15th December 2002, 10:35 PM
But don't 2 on 2 battles count as both of your battles?


Lady Vulpix
16th December 2002, 07:22 AM
Yes, they do. You can battle against 2 pokemon. Whether you battle them one at a time or both at once is your choice.

16th December 2002, 06:09 PM
What I mean is 2 pokemon out at once
battling 2 other pokemon.

Aipom Of Doom
16th December 2002, 09:02 PM
PC: That is, and has always been, a legal way of battling... You can have any of these combinations:

1 vs. 1
2 vs. 1
1 vs. 2
2 vs. 2
4 vs. 2

Remember, though, if you battle against two Pokemon at once, it counts as both battles...

Lady Vulpix
17th December 2002, 10:32 AM
*Points to rules.*

¤ Each trainer can battle 2 pokemon per scenario, and may use 1 or 2 pokemon per battle.

¤ If you use 2 pokemon in a battle, each of them will gain half the experience (levels).

18th December 2002, 10:51 PM
Lady Vulpix once again makes us all feel stupid by pointing out the obvious :P :D


Last Exile
19th December 2002, 02:00 AM
Originally posted by Mist
Lady Blastoise once again makes us all feel stupid by pointing out the obvious :P :D


Ouch! That's gotta hurt! :D But as if we think of you in that way Gabi! ;)

19th December 2002, 04:58 AM
Come on.. i'm not perfect.

Oops... Sorry sorry so sorry! I was writing chapter 30 of LVH at the time and as you do, you stuff up.
I'm SOOOOO sorry!

Now I feel twice as stupid.


Knight of Time
19th December 2002, 08:10 AM
This battle is for my own scenario.

[My POV]

My trip to the Porygon Valley, Part I

It was a good day for me. After exploring my hometown for a while, I was in the mood for some adventure, when I suddenly noticed something was wrong. Upon looking through the Pokeballs of all of my adopted Pokemon, I knew that one of them was missing. But this was no ordinary Pokeball, as it was none other than Cybertron's Pokeball! Becoming a little sad, I decided to take out my new male Crobat, Sniper, and asked him if he had seen the lost Porygon.

"No Kyle, I haven't seen it. However, I found a portal a short distance away from here. After going through the portal, I saw a sign said 'Welcome to Porygon Valley. All trainers that come here must bring a pair of sunglasses, or anything else that can shield their eyes from the very bright light in this valley, as it will blind them instantly when they come out of the portal."

Upon hearing this, I returned Sniper to his Pokeball and searched in my pack for some sunglasses, but to my surprise, not one pair was in sight, that is, until I walked along, finding a mysterious box by the side of the road. Thinking that someone must have dropped it by accident, I carefully walked over to the box, and opened it up to reveal a shiny new pair of sunglasses, but then I pondered for a few minutes. Who would want to leave a pair of glasses in a box near one side of a road?

After getting them analyzed at a nearby shop selling glasses, a man came up.

'I'm sorry, but I have no idea who these glasses belong to. I ought to thank you though, since these could have been lost or stolen. You didn't steal them did you?'

I soon answered that it was my first time coming into the glasses store, and how I had found the lost pair of glasses.

'Hmm, maybe someone lost these glasses. It's a good thing you brought them here, as I can now determine who they belong to.'

Getting a bit confused as to who the glasses belonged to, I pondered. How could soemone easily identify a pair of glasses and be able to determine who their owner is?

After a few minutes, I was handed the glasses, and shown to some tiny writing on one of the legs.

'This writing must have been put on by whoever bought these glasses. Unfortunately, I won't be able to read it without the aid of a powerful magnifying glass. Do you have one in your backpack, young man?'

Upon hearing the question, I shrugged. Knowing that I had already checked my backpack earlier, I decided to double-check it to see if I missed anything, and within several seconds I found my trusty magnifyling glass, and handed it to the shop owner.

'Splendid! Now, let's see...

...this pair of sunglasses belongs to a boy named Leo, but it unfortunately doesn't show a last name. However, there is a phone number printed here, so I will try to call Leo, and maybe he can come here.'

Upon hearing the good news, I decided to wait for a few minutes while the owner was calling Leo, until he hung up.

Within a few minutes a blond haired boy entered the shop.

'Hello, I have come here in search of a pair of sunglasses I dropped a few days ago. Are they here right now?'

Upon hearing he boy's question, I nodded, asking him if his name was Leo.

'Yes, that's me. How did you know my name?'

I soon answered Leo that the shop owner had found his name on his sunglasses.

'Oh, you found my sunglasses! Thank you very much, dude. I am from Porygon Valley, which can only be accessed by a hidden portal in this town. Have you gone to it yet? Also, what is your name?'

I soon answered that my name was Kyle, and that I had never been to the Porygon Valley, even though Sniper (my male Crobat) was there when I hought it wandered there.

"I'll take you to Porygon Valley, but on one condition. You must beat a Porygon I caught there one time, and I want to warn you, it knows Conversion2, so expect a hard battle, okay?'

I soon answered that I was truely looking for a challenge.

'Well why didn't you say so? I'll take you there right now, since I have an extra pair of sunglasses you can have. It is a gift to anyone who wishes to go there.'

Upon receiving the sunglasses, I thanked Leo, and I followed him as he led me back to the portal that lead to the land of Porygon and Porygon2, as we both found ourselves in the valley, and I then asked Leo if he had seen Cybertron's Pokeball.

'I'm not sure. What does it look like?'

I soon explained that the Pokeball was a shiny half pink, half blue Pokeball, that matched Cybertron's colours.

'A shiny pink and blue Pokeball eh? I think I might have it here, let me check.'

Upon waiting a few minutes, Leo pulled out a Pokeball out of his backpack.

'Is this your Pokeball, Kyle?'

I nodded. Being very happy to find it, I asked Leo how he found it.

'It seems like it was dropped by you, since I have a cottage in the city where you come from.'

Becoming a little confused, I thought to myself for a moment, then admitted my mistake, telling Leo that I probably didn't notice Cybertron's Pokeball falling out of my backpack.

With Cybertron back, I declared to Leo that I was ready to battle him.

'Okay, here is the rules. We will each use one Pokemon. If you win this battle, you can keep the shades I let you borrow. If you happen to lose, you will have to return the shades to me. You can go first if you like.'

Upon agreeing to Leo's proposal, I agreed, and shook hands with him as we both took out a Pokeball, mine containing my L6 Voltorb, Buzz, and Leo's containing a L10 Porygon2, who I learned he had named Flasher, and we shook hands, wishing each other good luck in the battle.

Buzz the Voltorb (L6) vs Flasher the Porygon2 (L10)

[My POV]

Upon finding out I was attacking first, I thought for a moment. Knowing that this Porygon2 was smart enough to make Buzz's hopes of defeating it a bit slim, I had to come up with a strong strategy.

'Buzz, use your Tackle attack!'

Upon seeing Buzz begin to charge headfirst towards Flasher, I saw the Porygon get knocked to the side a bit. Figuring this would be one of my hardest battles, I listened as Leo called his first attack.

'Flasher, start things off with a Conversion2!'

Soon, I could see Flasher glowing. Not having any idea what type it was going to take on, I patiently waited, until Flasher stopped glowing, its body now a shining silver. Figuring that Flasher had converted to the Steel type, I soon had an idea.

'Buzz, even though its new type is not weak to electric attacks, you have an attack that will do normal damage to Flasher, so shock it hard with a Thundershock!'

Soon, I could see a small amount of sparks flying out of Buzz' Pokeball like body. Hoping it would be able to shock the tough Porygon2, I waited, only to hear Leo call out a Protect attack!

With disappointment approaching very quickly, I knew I had to do something to help Buzz as best as I could.

'Buzz, Flasher may have avoided your first Thundershock, but it might get hit with this one, so use Thundershock again!'

Soon, I could see more sparks coming out of Buzz, and I could see that they are right on target this time.

'You may be getting the better of my Porygon2 Kyle, but I didn't call it Flasher for nothing. Now Flasher, blind Buzz with your Flash attack!'

Within a few seconds, a very bright flash entered the area. Pretty much as bright as the aura coming from this mystical place, I was lucky enough to 'have' these wonderful shades as a protection. Unfortunately for me, Buzz was not lucky, as I saw it begin to stumble all over the place.

Hoping it would not explode despite not knowing how to (yet), I was ready.

'Flasher, it is now or never at this time, so try your hardest to shock Flasher with another Thundershock attack!'

Upon having the command given to it, I could see more sparks coming out of Buzz' body, and they headed for Flasher, only to miss by about 2 feet!

I soon waited as Leo called out his next attack.

'Flasher, you have got Buzz well, so paralyze it with a Thunder Wave!'

Upon seeing the cone of energy head towards Buzz, I was shocked. Even though it had no muscles to my knowledge, I was horrified as I saw Buzz unable to move suddenly, and I knew that Buzz lost its turn this time.

'Okay Flasher, you have a great advantage over Buzz, so hit it with a Psychic blast!'

Upon seeing what was about to happen to Buzz, I shuddered. Watching my precious Voltorb being lifted into the air and dropped on the ground pretty hard, I had enough.

'Buzz, don't let your paralysis get the best of you. Tackle Flasher as hard as you can!'

Even though I knew that Buzz' vision and movement was hindered a bit, I was lucky enough to see it knock Flasher to the ground.

'You made a big mistake to underestimate Flasher Kyle, now you'll see what happens to any Pokemon who tries to get the better of Flasher. Now Flasher, get Buzz good with a strong Ice Beam!'

Soon, I could see a light blue icy beam coming from Flasher's mouth. Feeling relieved that Buzz was not weak to icy attacks, I watched nervously, hoping Buzz would not be frozen. I was lucky, as Buzz managed to barely avoid the sub zero temperature beam. Finding a sign that both Pokemon were getting weak, I knew that a loss here could trap me forever in the Porygon Valley, but I had plenty of courage at my side.

'Buzz, we have to be as careful as possible here not to lose, so shock Flasher again with another Thundreshock!'

Seeing more sparks come out of Buzz' body, I was relieved as I could see Flasher getting shocked, when I suddenly noticed something unusual, namely some leftover sparks circling around Flasher's body.

'Oh great, you got lucky to paralyze Flasher. But your luck has run out my friend. Flasher, finish off Buzz with a Tackle!'

As soon as I saw Flasher charging headfirst towards Buzz, I was becoming very nervous. Thinking Buzz might faint from one more Tackle, I watched as Buzz was knocked back once again. As soon as I saw it was not moving, I was scared. Thinking it had fainted, I was about to give up, when Buzz amazingly got up, still in the battle, but barely.

'Okay Buzz, this might be your last attack for this battle, so make it a good one. Use your best Thundershock on Flasher. I know you can win.'

As soon as I had given my maximum faith in Buzz, I saw some more sparks emerge from Buzz' body, and as soon as they struck Flasher, I was surprised to see Flasher not get up this time.

Knowing that his Pokemon was defeated, Leo went up to me.

'Kyle, even thougb I was the one to underestimate you, you have proved yourself in this battle. As I promised, the pair of shades you are wearing, you may keep. I hope you continue to do well here in Porygon Valley, as you are a good trainer here. Farewell, my friend.'

As I saw Leo recall Flasher and wave good-bye to me, I waved back, keeping the promise that I would train more in the Porygon Valley, and I recalled Buzz, complementing it on its first win here as I went deeper into the valley, hoping to find more adventure here in this great yet dangerous place...

Buzz grew to L8!

Dark Dragonite
19th December 2002, 09:05 AM
I'll please need a time extension on the christmas party scenario. The holiday, and everything have made things hectic around here. Thanks!!

Lady Vulpix
19th December 2002, 10:10 AM
Requesting a time extension for a scenario for which no one has written yet? That's strange, but you get it, Steve.
DatkPrince, I'll read your battle soon.
Tara, you've compared me with Lady Blastoise?! That hurts! Anyway, I know you didn't mean it, so you can relax now. :)

20th December 2002, 05:52 AM
Oh well now I can relax. ^_^ :D Thank you for your forgivness Gabbi ^_^


Lady Vulpix
20th December 2002, 12:34 PM
DarkPrince, you will be able to take 8 stamps for your battle after you've fixed it, and thanks for your patience! [¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢]

20th December 2002, 12:35 PM
@DarkPrince: Um, Porygon2 doesn't learn Flamethrower...

Lady Vulpix
20th December 2002, 12:40 PM
Oh, you're right! Sorry, I thought they could learn it.
DarkPrince, please fix your story.

20th December 2002, 03:27 PM
Anyway, Christmas scenario. Here goes.

And, uh, I'm going crazy about calling my Porygon an "it". I insist on referring to Switchblade as a "he" from now on, at least when I'm talking about him. He'll still technically be a genderless Porygon, though.


The Christmas party was filled with an air of excitement and joy. How nice for such a grand festival to be held just for the Dragon Tamers. It was a great way to just relax and enjoy the holidays. We had gotten to the party a little late because of a detour we had to take, and it was nearly evening, but no one seemed to mind. This was a time for ease and celebration, after all. Who really cared if people didn't make it to the party exactly when they were supposed to?

Something cooking smelled delicious. I turned to the kitchen with a hungry look in my eyes, and my mouth began to water. I couldn't resist good food. It was embarrassing, really. Especially because people didn't usually expect someone so thin to be such a pig. Switchblade tugged at me disapprovingly.

"Um, right." I giggled. "Thanks, Switch. Come on, let's go. Evenstar?"

I looked worriedly at Evenstar standing in the corner. From the little time that we'd spent together, I still knew that this wasn't her normal behavior. Switchblade and I had first met Evenstar not too long ago at the Pokézoo Adoption Center. We became friendly with each other from the very start.

I remember admiring Evenstar's enchanting feline grace and her dark, mysterious nature. The day Switchblade and I saw her, she looked genuinely divine; her clear ice crystals sparkled with the golden rays of the morning sun, casting a luminous glow upon her magnificent, velvety black coat. I expected a pokémon of such beauty to be hopelessly conceited and selective of whom she chose to give her attention to. Evenstar, on the contrary, was just the opposite: I was sincerely surprised by her charmingly amiable attitude when we first met.

Ever since the incident with the nasty Porygon2 trainer, who I know now is a wanted pokémon poacher named Mike, Switchblade had been more careful when it came to giving his trust to someone. He liked Evenstar right away, though, and if I knew Switchblade, he was an excellent judge of character. Many people often thought that just because Switchblade was a Porygon, he was a mindless machine. Well, they were wrong, and they were wrong about Evenstar, too. The rumors about every Sneasel being mean and deceitful were in every way untrue. She was almost always good-natured, though not as joyful and bouncy as Switchblade. She seemed quite mature and refined for her age, really. Naturally, it bothered me that she didn't seem quite herself today.

I walked up to Evenstar. "Are you okay?" Evenstar gave me one weary look, then slumped into my arms. Soon, she was sleeping peacefully.

"So that's what it was... Looks like the long trip here was more exhausting for her than she let on. I'm glad she's not feeling sick. It would be horrible to feel that way when everyone else is having a great time at a party!" I gestured at Switchblade to follow me. "Switch, this house is huge! It'll be fun to explore it while Evenstar takes her nap."

Forty winks later, Evenstar was back on her feet and thoroughly refreshed. She looked much better now, and this time she could fully enjoy the party. She was sniffing the air with delight, as, again, was I. The smell of the food was getting really strong now. Switchblade shook his head, grinning.

It was while enjoying the heavenly smells that I nearly walked right into someone.

"Ah! Sorry! I should have watched where I was going!"

A girl about my height stood before me with a pleasant smile. "Oh, that's okay. Actually, it was my fault. I was trying to bump into you."


She giggled. "Hi, I'm Kristyn. I couldn't help but notice your adorable Porygon and your gorgeous Sneasel!" She extended her hand.

Taking it, I introduced myself and smiled.

"I was hoping you'd be up for a battle. My Meowth and Aipom would just love to burn up some energy before the big feast."

"Sure! Switchblade, Evenstar, are you okay with this?" After receiving approving nods from both, I turned to Kristyn and nodded at her, too.

"Oh, one more thing," she added. "Let's battle them both at once."

"Cool! That'll be fun. Alright, let's start!"

Switchblade the Porygon LV 10 and Evenstar the Sneasel LV 6 vs. Meowth LV 10 and Aipom LV 6

"Aipom, Dynamicpunch that Sneasel in the head! Meowth, I want you to use Iron Tail on the Porygon!"

I cringed at hearing the words "Dynamicpunch" and "Iron Tail". Those were powerful TMs, and Kristyn did not hesitate to start the battle with them. Did her pokémon have more that were even worse still left unknown?

Although the Aipom, fist burning with chi energy, was prepared to pound Evenstar senseless, she did not panic. So like her. She'd remain calm in almost any situation, even if faced with grave danger. When the Aipom threw its fist at her with lightning speed, she still managed to leap swiftly aside, showing no signs of strained effort. Switchblade wasn't faring so poorly himself. The Meowth made the mistake of pouncing at him head-on instead of creeping stealthily behind him. In mere moments, it was frozen midway on its jump, surrounded by a blue glow. Switchblade, maintaining his firm psionic grip, lifted the poor Meowth high into the air, then, when he thought it was enough, threw it headfirst into the wall beside it. Halfway down, the Meowth came to its senses and clung to the wall, with wood splintering as its claws brought it to a screeching halt right above the floor.

Kristyn was shocked. "You didn't even tell your pokémon what to do! How'd they manage to do that on their own?"

"They do whatever they want to do, which is what I encourage them to do," was my reply. Kristyn looked confused, but did not pursue the matter further.

"Aipom, that Sneasel's a little too fast for your Dynamicpunch, but that's okay. I want you and Meowth to use those Zap Cannons we've been working on! Zap Cannon usually moves slowly, but with all the training we've done to improve both of yours, there'll be no escape! You'll get both the Sneasel and the Porygon!"

Evenstar gave Switchblade one look, and they both nodded. They had a plan. Snickering, Switchblade hovered over to Evenstar, who hopped onto his back and put her arms firmly around his neck, preparing for a rough ride. As soon as Evenstar held on tightly, Switchblade burst off with magical speed, zig-zagging back and forth and looping around both the Aipom and the Meowth. All they could see was a speeding blur of color.

"Good move, you two!" I yelled. "Fast though their Zap Cannons may be, Meowth and Aipom can't hit what won't stay still!"

Not to be outdone, Kristyn came up with a brilliant counter. "That Porygon won't be able to dodge your attacks if he's not sure which ones to dodge. Both of you, Double Team!"

The Meowth's and the Aipom's images flickered, then drew out into long blurs. When they stopped moving, I could see three Meowth and Aipom scattered unevenly across the wide wooden corridor, respectively. Kristyn was right. Switchblade wouldn't be able to tell which pokémon were illusory and which were real! All six images held out their arms that began to house violently sparking orbs.

Sensing the futility, Switchblade stopped his wild dashing. Even Evenstar seemed a little nervous as she watched the yellow-green electricity collect in the hands of the opponent...

Six orbs headed towards Switchblade and Evenstar in the center at the same time. Four had no substance, but it was impossible to distinguish between those and the real threats... Evenstar leapt into the air, backflipped, and grasped the wooden wall. Switchblade, panicking, was not so lucky. Right before impact, the faux orbs vanished into thin air while the real two closed in, right on target... Switchblade let out a shrill mechanical cry as the vicious electricity surged through his body in an explosion of electrical fury. Immediately, his muscles began to lock up, and he knew that they might refuse to cooperate in the direst of situations. With his greatest personal attribute taken away from him, his ability to move freely with amazing speed, I wondered how Switchblade would cope.

The mirror images were still untouched. They would have to be destroyed soon, or Evenstar and Switchblade would be, in essence, defenseless, not knowing which attacks coming from which direction to dodge. Switchblade knew this already, and, despite his newly-acquired handicap, did not fail to rid the corridor of the troublesome illusions. Eyes sparking with renewed vigor, Switchblade mustered a powerful arctic blast that swept through the corridor, wiping out the mirror images and leaving only the real Aipom and Meowth to shiver in the chilling wind's wake. After that, they moved about in a sluggish manner, still not fully recovered from the icy ordeal.

Sensing their weakness, Evenstar released her grip of the wall, landing lightly on the wooden floor. Winking at Switchblade, she took over, descending first upon the Meowth with her razor-sharp claws, then proceeding next to dig them into the nearby Aipom's side. She swiped with rapid fury, never giving either pokémon the time to react.

Finally, Kristyn decided she had to put an end to Evenstar's swift offensive. "Aipom! Meowth! Enough! Protect yourselves!"

Starry, nearly impenetrable barriers erupted in front of the two, pushing Evenstar away. She staggered backwards, a little short of breath, but otherwise fine.

Until this time, neither the Meowth nor the Aipom had paid much attention to Switchblade... their biggest mistake of all. Now more than ever, his fighting spirit had grown to its fullest intensity. His reckless power channeled into the sparkling ring of orbs that circled him, feeding them every moment with increasingly more strength. The glittering sienna orbs throbbed violently as they grew larger, larger, larger, spiralling in a ring around Switchblade's body up, then down, then up again, each time travelling faster and faster on their path. With an impressive war cry, Switchblade let the raging energy loose, roaring with fury as the ring enclosed about the Meowth and Aipom, allowing no means of escape... then exploded with devastating power, blasting up broken chunks of debris from the corridor walls. When the cloud of smoke cleared, the two pokémon were revealed, laying on the ground. The Meowth was first to struggle tentatively up, and the Aipom painstakingly followed.

"Meowth, Aipom, you're all right!" Kristyn heaved a sigh of relief. "I'm glad. Now, you two, don't give that Porygon another chance to do that again! Finish him! Aipom, Dynamicpunch! Meowth, Pay Day!"

Evenstar watched with helpless horror as the Meowth and the Aipom cornered Switchblade, trying unsuccessfully to drag them away from him. Switchblade's eyes were glazed with a faraway look, as if he really were not there. His body fell into a violent twitching spasm, constricting him, preventing him from getting away... The first blow from the Aipom's burning fist struck his head, throwing his mind into a state of utter chaos. The second, he hardly felt... He was only half aware of the shower of endless coins that pelted him continuously, as he felt his consciousness slowly ebb away from him...

Then, Evenstar was alone. Alone, but compelled to avenge Switchblade's fall. She refused to fail to complete what Switchblade had started.

Kristyn's voice rang through the chaos. I could hear a slight tinge of confidence in her speech. "Good job, Meowth! Good job, Aipom! Now, Double Team! Make the Sneasel feel hopelessly outnumbered!"

The two split into more separate entities, forming a ring of six around Evenstar. She calmly eyed the three Aipom and the other three Meowth. They were far more exhausted than she, she knew. All she had to do was identify the real ones and deal the final blow to each. Evenstar smiled with graceful cunning. When I saw the spark of light in her eyes, I knew she was going to reveal the gift she received from birth. Evenstar was presented with the gift of sight... Her mind was ever clear, never clouded by trickery and deception. She could always see the truth. A soft light bathed the darkened corridor. Upon seeing this, the Meowth and Aipom knew their time was up. Evenstar would not fall for their tricks. She saw right through their illusions. Their faces filled with submission as they finally succumbed to her blows, falling to the ground...

Evenstar and Switchblade(KOed) won!
Evenstar grew to LV 9!
Evenstar learned Quick Attack!


"That was a good battle, Kristyn," I told her.

"Yeah, it was fun. I had a great time. I think the food's almost ready now. I'm going to head downstairs. You're coming, right?"

I grinned, then nodded. "First, though," I said, picking up Switchblade and letting Evenstar climb onto my shoulder, "I need to visit the nearby Pokémon Center. I'll be back!" With that, I hurried down the stairs and out the door.

22nd December 2002, 01:08 AM
Hey I just realised something.

On my website my eevee's (Shinoda and Nimmy) - the only basic atacks I put were Tackle and Tail Whip where as i just found out they've got like 5 basic atacks they can learn. (http://www.pokemasters.com/pokedex/133.html).

Do I have to wait for them to learn those attacks or can I just go ahead and add them even though I've been battling with them for yonks.


Lady Vulpix
22nd December 2002, 06:56 AM
Wow! Great battle, Charizard04621! Take 18 stamps! ¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢

Tara, yours was a good question which made me doubt for a minute, but then I checked Tsunami's info and saw that he learned those attacks at the levels that correspond to G/S, so that's the answer. Attacks are learnt at the same levels as in G/S unless they don't learn those moves in those games (in which case they'll learn them at the levels they would in the other games). I hope that was clear.

22nd December 2002, 09:40 AM
Wow, 18 stamps. *faints* Err, thanks.

Oh, btw, this may or may not be relevant, but if there's a battle scenario up during the two weeks in which I'm gone (starting tomorrow), I'd like a time extension on it. Thanks! ^^

Lady Vulpix
22nd December 2002, 10:47 AM
*helps Charizard04621 up.*
I don't think there will be, but you can count on that extension. Happy holidays!

22nd December 2002, 04:41 PM
<My POV>

I woke up for another day lay ahead of me, as usual. Like always, Aries slept on my bed and got up when I did. Getting dressed and doing all of the necessities that I needed to, we walked downstairs to greet the rest of my Pokemon. Lyra ran up to me and gave me a hug as I tried to pick her up, but failing. Her successful campaign against the Bellossom didn’t seem to long ago, when in reality it was about 2 months earlier. Everyone could feel that she was ready to evolve soon and she trained everyday so that special day could come sooner. Sitting down, Nightshade passed out a platter of pancakes, which he always made on Sundays. We all nodded gratefully and ate our fill, Nightshade eating most of his own creation. The glutton. After everything was cleaned and put away, I went outside to collect the mail that I forgot to get yesterday. I passed through all the junk mail as I went back inside, where I promptly walked into the door. Drake snorted as he helped me back up and walked back into the kitchen with me. Throwing away the junk that I passed through earlier, I came upon a letter decorated in red and green, the traditional colors of Christmas. Although not entirely intrigued, I proceeded to open the card and read it. It seemed that there was a Dragon Tamer’s Christmas party and all of the trainers were invited to have fun and battle. I tapped the card against my hand and glanced up at the clock. It was 12 in the afternoon and the party was at 6. I sighed and ran a hand through my hair as my Pokemon gathered around me.
<What’s wrong? >, Shade asked.
“I just got invited to a Christmas party tonight”, I replied.
Everyone was silent as I mulled over my decision. My Pokemon and I were Jewish and they knew I wasn’t fond of Christmas, only because of the extra hype it got. I wasn’t passionate about my religion, but I believed that it shouldn’t pale against Christmas. Every time I turned on the TV, there would be shows and commercials about Christmas. I was the most bitter around this time, but the thought of Adam Sandler being Jewish and creating the best Jewish songs ever was a compensation to my misery.
<So, what are you going to do? >, Apollo asked.
“I guess we can go”, I slowly said. “I’ll try not to think of anything except of the battling that the card mentioned.”
Everyone brightened up at the mention of ‘battling’ but the word actually made me remember something important. My eyes opened wide and I let out a silent curse as I ran upstairs.
“I forgot to tell you guys something”, I yelled as I ran up hurriedly.
Running into my room, I picked up a Pokeball on my counter beside my bed and ran back down. Running into another wall in excitement, I yelled once more, this time in pain. They all snickered as Nightshade righted me up with his psychic abilities. Walking more calmly now, I strolled back into the living room and held a Pokeball out.
“Ever since I let go of Gaea, I missed her greatly and wished that I could have her back.”
They all looked at my quizzically, wondering why I was talking about the former Sandshrew that I owned. I smiled and continued.
“But I couldn’t since someone else took her. Months passed and my only Pokemon were you 8. A month ago, I decided to get another Pokemon, in place of Gaea.”
Their eyes widened as they realized that they gained another member of the team. Letting the ball fall to the ground, they backed away as the ball bounced and a red flash appeared. Forming into a figure, they gazed quietly upon the small Pokemon.
“My friends, this is Orion”, I smiled.
The small Cubone glanced around as he nervously tossed his bone back and forth in his hands. The looming Blade was the first to walk forward and hold out a claw towards Orion. Visibly shaken, Orion took a step back but after realizing that Blade didn’t mean any harm, he took his claw and shook it firmly.
<We’re born to train to be the best, I hope you will fight also…or else>, Blade boomed and turned away.
I did a face fault as everyone snorted.
“Blade!”, I exclaimed, not very surprised at his serious demeanor but the fact that he acted cold towards Orion.
Like a crimson streak, he turned around and faced me. Gazing at each other quietly, his face suddenly broke into a smile and laughed out loud.
<Man, you are so gullible>, he choked and fell to the floor.
I shook my head and smiled as everyone else giggled and fell to the floor, except for Lee and Shade, who took Orion outside to explain to him why Blade acted that way and who everyone else was.

After awhile, everyone gathered themselves together and sat around the TV to watch something while I sat outside with Drake, Blade and Lee. Shade and Orion went back inside to greet everyone else.
<So why hide him for a month? >, Lee questioned as he practiced tae-bo.
I shrugged and picked at a blade of grass. “I thought you guys wouldn’t accept him since you’ve been together for more than a year now.”
<But you introduced Apollo to us immediately>, Drake argued.
“Yes, but that was shortly after Gaea left. I didn’t think about getting another Pokemon until recently and I wasn’t sure how you guys would react to him so when I got him, I kept him away, although training him for a bit so he could keep up with everyone else.”
They all nodded thoughtfully as they stared collectively up at the cloudless sky.
“Anyway, lets get back to the subject of the party”, I said. “It said that we’re allowed to bring our Pokemon and can battle them, but only 2 of you can battle at all. I know all of you want to battle, but I decided to use Orion and Apollo.”
They sighed as their chances of battling faded away, but were curious as to why I came to my decision.
“I know you guys want to know why Apollo and Orion instead of Lyra or anyone else. Orion is simple; since he’s new and I want to level him up some, get the feeling of battling Pokemon other than you guys. Apollo because he’s close to evolving.”
They all stared at me in wonderment, not even realizing the fact.
“No one really seems to notice Apollo’s battling at all, since he seems like a bit of a loner, like Lee.”
Everyone knew Lee was a loner and knew when not to disturb him when he was training.
<So, you’re saying that we didn’t see it because he’s usually off by himself. >, Lee questioned.
“Exactly. Since I keep an equal eye on all of you, I noticed that Apollo seemed excited about something and has been acting a bit restless lately.”
They all raised their eyes in wonderment, but nodded in understanding. Getting up, I stretched and looked up at they sky. The sky took on the colors of a dark pink, light orange and pale blue. Glancing at the clock, I saw the numbers blink 5:30. I shook my head and wondered how time went by that fast but I didn’t dwell on it as we walked back inside. I told everyone that it was time to go and they all went reluctantly inside their Pokeballs except for Lee. Walking out the front door, I dreaded the party but looked forward to the battle.

My house was a short distance from the Recreational Center and music could be heard from inside as we strode closer. I sighed and had second thoughts of going, but a pat on the back from Lee was all I needed and I kept going further. Soon enough, we were at the door and a shaky hand gripped the cold metal tightly. I imagined tearing it off, but it just opened silently and we walked in. Just as I expected, Christmas decorations were littered everyone, with few signs of Happy Hannukah in the back of the room. I moaned quietly and tried to focus my attention upon the food and the many Pokemon inside of the great hall. Letting everyone else out, all of them went towards the food table, except for Orion who was by my side at all times. I perfectly knew well enough that there were also people inside, but I kept away from them and joined my Pokemon at the table. Everyone had a plate filled with snacks and a drink in their hand. Needing help with his food, I put Aries’s desired food on his plate and placed it on the floor with a bowl of soda filled to the top. Placing Orion on the table, we also got our food and joined the rest of the team at the chairs. It wasn’t long before Nightshade downed his platter and went back for seconds. Most of us went back for seconds and had our share of junk food until we were too full to do much of anything except watch everyone else either talk or dance. Nightshade unfortunately had the worst idea – dancing. I immediately shook my head in refusal, as did almost everyone else, except for Lyra. I admired their bravery as they danced in front of us, but glad that we didn’t make fools out of ourselves. They danced to a couple of songs before they got tired and I was sick of all the red and green so we made our way outside, which was where the Pokemon battling actually was. We started to watch a current battle between a Stantler and Chikorita when someone tapped my shoulder. I turned around to face a boy about my age, but a lot taller than me, around 5’8.
“Hey, I’m Nick”, he said in a cracking voice.
I tried to hold back a grin as he continued to talk.
“I noticed your Pokemon and they seem to be in perfect condition. Do you want to battle?”.
By now, he noticed that I was grinning like a Cheshire cat because of his voice and he coughed and turned his face away, blushing. I smiled and nodded. He smiled in return and we made our way to a vacant arena. Turning on the lights that lit the area, we made our to the spots, me to the closer box and him to the farther one.
“Does a 2 on 2 sound ok to you?”, he called out in a lower voice, trying not to expose his cracking voice.
“Yeah, fine with me”, I replied and pointed a finger at Orion.
As he went towards the arena, I held him back for a second and whispered to him.
“I know you’ve taken orders from me before, but I try to get my Pokemon to use their instincts. Use yours. I know you can.”
He nodded and ran into the center of the arena. Nick looked at my choice and unhooked a Pokeball from his belt. Throwing it into the center, a Meowth materialized and swung his tail back and forth. To me, it was an odd choice for a boy to have a feline Pokemon, but he probably just liked cats. We nodded to each other and yelled out “GO!” to start the battle.

Orion Lv.8 Cubone vs. Lv.10 Meowth
<Orion’s POV>

Tossing my bone back and forth, I realized that that’s what I did when I was nervous. I guess it was a compulsive thing. The Meowth perceived me to be cocky though and hissed in warning.
<You’d better be careful small one>, he growled and sprang at me, his claws unsheathed.
<Who are you calling small? >, I replied and dodged away from the pounce.
He kept at it and tried to scratch my body at every given moment. His trainer seemed pleased with the progress while my own silently urged me to keep going. I decided to stop the chase and finally face him down. Bringing his claws upon me, I let him scratch me. I grimaced in pain as my eyes only showed any true emotions but the cat let down his defenses, giving me enough time to strike. Swinging my club back, I smashed it upon his skull, a loud [I]thwack[/b] coming from my bone. He squealed in pain and backed away. Seething in anger, he opened his mouth to reveal a dozen bright, pointy stars. Letting them go one at a time, they all zoomed at me, not letting up at all. I tried to run away from them, but they were apparently attracted to moving body heat and eventually cut through my skin. I fell to the ground in exhaustion and pain; the only sound I could hear was my own heart thumping loudly. Struggling to get up, I got onto all fours when a leg smashes me onto the ground again and claws swiped at my back.
<So I guess this means I got you trapped>, the cat mewed smugly. <You have no where to go and you’re too weak to do anything! >.
Blood rushed through my head in anger and I yelled in rage. Now I could hear everything, including my team yelling in vain to get up. I knew there was one attack that the cat didn’t know I had, and I decided to use it. Concentrating on my powers, I transferred what electric energy I had in my right fist. Hearing tiny sparks coming from it, I waited. Soon enough, Meowth’s foot became lax and I swung my body up, knocking him down. Seeing straight, I looked at his body and punched him hard in his gut. He screamed as electricity went into his body, plus the fact that I punched him hard in the gut and made him lose his wind. Making sure he wouldn’t get back up, I knocked him hard with my club and he didn’t stir again. My team yelled in excitement as I won my first battle in front of them. Trotting back, my trainer ran forward and scooped me up into a hug. I dug my face into her neck as she squeezed me, almost into the point of choking me. Luckily enough, she put me down to face her opponent once more.

Orion grew to Level 10 and learned Bone Club and Ice Beam as a free TM!

<My POV>

I yelled in happiness as Orion won his first battle in front of the team. I scooped him up and almost squeezed him into a pulp before putting him down. Looking back at Nick, I saw him return his Meowth to his ball and murmur a praise. He smiled at me and took out another ball.
“This next one won’t be so easy”, he said and threw the ball.
Unlike his small Meowth he had earlier, a full grown Ampharos came out of the ball. She cried out a warning to her adversary as her taillight and red gem lit up dangerously. I shallowly gulped in fear but looked back at my team. Looking down at Apollo, I saw his eyes light up as I looked at him. Smiling weakly, I nodded my head and he exuberantly ran into the arena. Nick looked at me in surprised, but his smile turned into a smug one of victory. I clenched my jaws as we both told our Pokemon to go ahead and battle. I just hoped Apollo wouldn’t get serious hurt…or killed.

Apollo Lv.26 Elekid vs. Lv.40 Ampharos
<Apollo’s POV>

Although excited by battling, I didn’t feel too confident of beating a huge Ampharos. I looked up at her with a mixture of feelings while she glared down at me in distaste. Apparently, she didn’t feel that an Elekid was worth her time.
<C’mon, squirt, lets get this over with>, she sighed and threw an electric punch at me.
She was quick, but I was more nimble and dodged it easily. She grunted in anger and threw out another one but I dodged it once again.
<Please, you can do better than that, can’t you? >, I taunted.
She yelled and expelled dozens of little sticky cotton balls from her gem. Sticking to me, I thought nothing of it until I realized that I couldn’t move. I struggled to free myself as she snickered at my helplessness. Charging herself up, she shot out a pale blue thunderbolt at me. Falling to the ground, I rolled away from the bolt of lightning as it struck the ground and sizzled. Hissing at me to stop, she shot out several more until one connected. I screamed out as the overbearing electricity ran through my body, only good thing that came of it was that the spores all over my body were fried to a crisp, letting me go. I gasped as I started to twitch all over, a sign of paralyzation. My team groaned as they realized the prospects of a second win fading. I forced my way up though and tried to get a grip and get my muscles under control.
<A gutsy one, are ya? >, she sneered. <Well, try this on for size>.
Running towards me, she jumped into the air and landed on me. A cry of anger rushed through the crowd as Ampharos repeatedly slammed me down harder and harder. A headache started to form as my vision became cloudy. I was too focused to give up though and thought about fire. Instantly, my right hand became enflamed and as Ampharos came down for one last body slam, I rolled away and got up. Running as fast as I could, I rammed my fist into her back, scorching her body. I repeated the process with fire, and eventually ice with both hands as parts of her body became encased in ice and burned from fire. Both of us were heavily panting after the major excitement, she lying on the ground and I bent forwards. A snarl from her though said that she wasn’t about to give up and sprang from her position into a fighting stance. I too wasn’t going to give up that easily and stood in my own position. Rushing forward, I let loose a barrage of white stars at her. As they collided with her body, she came forward and punched me hard in the head. For the second time, I went down. Looming over my body, she sneered as I gasped for air, almost done.
<You’ve fought well pipsqueak, but I’m just too powerful for you>, she growled.
Hearing her charging up for one last final attack, I only knew one attack could save me and held my arms out forward. Moving them around silently, I prayed that it would protect me. A scream from her indicated that she let it go. Turning over onto my back, I watched the blue bolt crash above me, trying to claw at my body and take me away from consciousness. I smiled though as it never reached me and eventually faded away. Ampharos stared at me, shell shocked as my light screen glistened in the night, saving me from a certain doom. Getting up slowly, it faded away into nothingness. I stared at my opponent hard and cold, spitting out my last words to her.
<Don’t underestimate a small Pokemon>, I growled and rammed into her stomach.
Knocking her down to the ground, she could only watch as I jumped high into the air and crossed my arms. Falling down towards her face, I went into a spinning cross chop and drilled into her neck. She gasped and instantly went cold as I fell to the ground next to her. Getting up, I walked briskly out of the arena, hugged my trainer and fell to the ground in exhaustion.

Apollo grew to Level 28!

<My POV>

I gaped in astonishment as Apollo overcame the Ampharos and finished her with a stunning cross chop. Immediately walking straight out, he hugged my legs and then fell to the ground in exhaustion. I gave a short laugh and recalled him into his Pokeball, as well as Orion. I walked forward as Nick returned his Pokemon and met me in the center.
“Wow, what a battle”, he commented softly.
“I know. It was freaky. Your Pokemon are well trained though. At first, I thought Apollo couldn’t beat your Ampharos, but it was his own strong will that kept him going.”
He nodded and shook my hand.
“One day, I will re-challenge you and I will definitely do better.”
He gave me one last smile and turned away to walk back into the recreational hall. Turning towards my Pokemon, I gave a tired grin.
“I’m tired out from all this battling. Who wants to go home and watch some TV?”.
They all cheered (except for Lee of course) and followed me home to finally relax and have a good time.

22nd December 2002, 06:14 PM
^_^ Your answer made sense Gabbi. So basic attacks go by the GSC games. If like, Eevee learnt Sand Attack at level eight on RBY and learnt the same attack at level 16 in GSC (example) would you have to go by the GSC way or could u just use whichever came first?


23rd December 2002, 09:58 AM
(my pov)

I smiled as I stretched out after a long nap. I walked out of my house, Sentret walking beside me.

"Where are we going?" Sentret asked.

"Christmas party, remember? I told you about it last week!" I informed her.

We walked through the door and immediately heard and saw pokemon battles. Loud music was being played and large tables of food were everywhere. a young trainer walked up to me anxiously.

"Hey, wanna battle?" He asked me nervously.

I nodded and told him it would be a one verse one battle. He grinned and sent out a meowth. I laughed and sent out Cubone.

LVL 8 cubone vs. LVL 12 Meowth
(Cubone's pov)

I popped out of my pokeballl and twirled my club. Across from me I saw a Meowth. I rushed forward and whipped meowth with my tail, causing him to lose concentration. He tried to swope at me but he missed. I raised my club up and brought it down on his head. He fell back whimpered as a large lump formed on his head. He stood up and rushed at me, scrathcing me with his lethal claws. I smacked him again with my club knocking him down and keeping him there.

Cubone went from lvl 8 to lvl 10 and learned icy wind as a tm.

Lady Vulpix
23rd December 2002, 12:27 PM
Hmm... That was ok. Take 2 stamps, Teddiursa! ¢¢
Rebecca, I'll read yours soon.
Tara, we go by GSC levels unless it's a RBY-only move.

23rd December 2002, 04:54 PM
[color=royalblue]Darn. Because I've been following the rule "which ever level it learns it quicker" which was said to somebody in the last version. I think Danny (AoD right?) said something like that.


23rd December 2002, 06:37 PM
(this will be better than the last, I was in a hurry last time)

(my point of view)

I walked over to tables piled high with food and pured myself some punch. I turned around just in time to a boy slam into me, spilling my fruit punch all down my shirt. I stared at the kid in the eyes as he s******ed and walked away. I wouldnt let this end. I grabbed him by his shirt and pulled him back to me.

"This is my favorite shirt," I said, barely able to control my hrrible temper.

"So?" He said slyly.

That was enough for me. I grabbed his throat and slammed him into a table. He grabbed my arm and tried to twist it. An older man rushed forward and broke us apart.

"No fighting! Use your pokemon to settle this!" He exclaimed

He snarled and released a pokeball. A marril appeared and laughed at my stain. That made me even more mad. I grabbed sentret and sent her into battle.

LVL. 8 Sentret vs. LVL. 16 Marril

(Sentret's pov)

I immediately stood up on my tail and looked nervously toward my trainer, who was trying to get a stain out of shirt. I looked back torward my opponent and saw him rush forward and use his tail to sweep my tail from under me, knocking me on my bum. I stood up and pushed up clouds of sand into the marril's face. He dropped back shot a jet of water at me, hitting me in the arm. I rushed forward, arm still in slight pain and bowled the marril over in perfect stride. I did a nifty roll and ended up behind marril. Marril shot his tail up and whipped my face with it. I dropped backwards and tried to dust him with more sand but he simply blasted water at the sand. Again, I rushed forward, smacking into the marril. I got up and saw marril smiling ! A burst of water shot out and hit me square in the face. I rushed forward tiredly, again hitting Marril. We both got up very slowly this time. He sent a powerful jet of water at me, but I was ready. I sprung into the air with my tail and came down right on top of the marril, smothering him. I backed off and saw a motionless Marril laying on the ground.

Sentret went from lvl. 8 to lvl 11 and learned quick attack and dynamic punch as a tm!

23rd December 2002, 07:07 PM
Actually, since your Sentret fought the Marill, its level would go from 8 to 9, not 8 to 11. Therefore, you can't get the free TM

Edit- Now that I think about it, I have no idea why you went into the next category to fight the Marill, unless you can do that and actually go up 3 levels if your Pokemon beats it

23rd December 2002, 09:28 PM
Lv6 Growlithe(From Pokézoo adoption center) Vs. Lv10 Meowth:

Growlithe's POV
Meowth started by rushing at me with his claws, he was to fast to attack so I used Roar in an attempt to intimidate him and break his concentration. However Meowth started laughing because he didn't think a Lv6 pokemon was a big threat. I Body Slamed him while he was distracted, that slowed him down a bit, so I used another Body Slam to slow Meowth down even further.
Meowth was almost paralyzed so I immediatly bit his tail. Meowth tryed to run but was to slow so I kept biting his tail until I won

Afterwards I started licking my trainer playfully while being careful not to burn him.

Growlithe grew to level 8

24th December 2002, 07:44 AM
Rebecca (is TML right) I'm going to call you Bec. Bec, I did that once with my Shadow (houndour) and it's not allowed. My battle wasn't allowed therefore I didn't get any levels for it. So you have to keep within your level boundries.

And also - announcement.

I'm going away camping for three weeks. I'm going from here to Newcastle coastal area, then to Coffs HArbor, QLD, then back down stopping at places for like two nights or something. I'll be away until the 15th of January so I'll need a time extension and I'll realy miss u guys heaps! Hope u dont miss me too much.

I feel freaky ^_^ A time extension on my own scenario. I've also been writing a week before it was actually posted 2. ^_^

Luv u guyz heaps. Gona miss u a lot. I'll email Gabbi and she can give you messages from me or something - dat okay Gabster?


Lady Vulpix
24th December 2002, 08:43 AM
Ookay, let's start.

Rebecca, take 18 stamps for your story, plus 1 more stamp for your help! ¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢
I wish you didn't feel so down about Christmas, though. I believe there's nothing wrong about other people celebrating, and that having a good time whenever there's a chance is the best alternative. Maybe if you had stayed at that party a little longer, we would have been able to talk a little. I would have enjoyed the company of a fellow Jewish at the party. Needless to say, I'm not celebrating Christmas either, but that party is an important social event for the Dragon Tamers, so I'm not missing it (though I'm not organizing it either, in case anyone's planning to say that in their stories; I am helping out, though).

Tara, you get the time extension. Enjoy your vacation!! I can hardly believe I have to hand in a project on January 3rd (uni's closed in January, but they'll open it for us that day). And I have a final the day after tomorrow too. At least I don't have a party IRL tonight, nor tomorrow, so I'll have time to study. Anyway, I'll still do my best to have a good time. That's my policy.

Teddiursa89, your battle is invalid. Please rewrite it so that it follows the rules, as Rebecca pointed out.

Lugia0013, your post could have been much more descriptive, but it's valid and mostly well written. Take a stamp. ¢

24th December 2002, 09:30 AM
Well, like I said, I don't have qualms towards Christmas except for the overhype it gets. Setting up decorations in stores 2 months earlier is just stupid to me. And those old Christmas movies they show on TV are just too cheesy. Anyway, I didn't want to involve myself too much in the party since I wanted to battle more. Thanks for the stamps though

24th December 2002, 05:44 PM
I'm asking for a time extension. Hopefully i won't need it but just in case. I just got started on it five minutes ago. I've been busy with family and all that good stuff. I'm not complaining, i enjoyed it. Just haven't had that much time

Lady Vulpix
25th December 2002, 08:56 AM
I understand, Amy. I don't have much time either, having a final tomorrow and all.
You get a time extension, but the fact that so many people are requesting one suggests that we should wait for some time before posting the next scenario. Maybe by the second week of January or so... we'll see what everyone's situation is like by then.
Oh, and Rebecca, I understand you too. :)

Last Exile
26th December 2002, 04:46 AM
Enjoy the trip, Tara! Queensland is pretty fine. So have fun and take care of yourself.

I won't miss you much ;) ..... I'll miss you a lot! :D

Hope everyone had a Merry Christmas! I'll start working on mine ASAP. Just been busy sorting out my teaching course application and Christmas. Going to see whether I can find any bargains at the after-Chirstmas sales tomorrow.

28th December 2002, 05:24 AM
I woke up stretching, blinking in astonishment as a furry paw dropped into view. I felt around my head, and came up with a small furry marron vulpix curled around my head. I grinned and popped her on my pillow along with Sparky, Ice, Rosy, Silk, and for a change, Shade my gastly. Blaze, and Fireball were curled up together at the end of the bed with Typhoon, and Bubbles Sallai and Courage were in the pokèbasket I had set up on the floor. I grinned.

Is tumbled downstairs, yawning. I managed to smack into several walls, and eventually pinball my way outside. I yawned and stretched with my furry blue polar bear slippers on, and my furry Blue Kitty pj’s. I shuffled over and grabbed the mail, bolting back inside as the door started to close. I chucked the mail on the counter, splashing my face with water from the sink. I shivered, and then dried my face, noticing a green and reed wrapped letter. Intrigued, I opened it. Cool! A Christmas party! But even better, battles! I grinned. The perfect way to get back into Dragon Tamers after a summer with my relatives that lived so far away.

I tossed together porridge and blue berries for breakfast, with Orange Juice then yelled for my pokèmon. The little pokèmon, Rainbow, Sparky, and Ice all came tumbling downstairs on Rosy and Silk. I grinned as silk headed straight for the table. Sallai came bolting down next, a hyper active Bubbles squealing on her back. Typhoon raced Fireball down the stairs, and Blaze arrived stately, curled up asleep on Courage’s back. When everyone was at the table I let them chow down. It was a beautiful Sunday morning. I looked at the invitation. It was tonight.

“Okay everyone, were going to a party tonight for the Dragon Tamers. Best behaviour ok! Also, two of you can battle. I’d like Sparky and Sallai to battle please.” My pokèmon discussed it among them then agreed. I grinned. “Then lets go outside and play!” I yelled. But first, I bolted upstairs and rugged up, bringing mittens, scarfs and hats for my pokèmon. I rugged the little ones up, then let them play. All my pokemon had a ball, and then we all trooped back inside at around 1:30 tired.

I gave them all a hot bath and dried them off, and let them sit in front of the fire and watch tv. I collapsed to the couch to watch with them. Soon it was around 4:30. I ran upstairs, and got dressed. I changed into warm long black flared jeans with silver flames that wound up with blue to the knee, black sneakers with a white sole, and a nice silver belt, with a legendary pokèmon as the clasp. I wore a nice white shirt with an angel on it, saying, “I swear that the horns are only there to hold the horn up!” with a Black vest over the top (the kind with lots of pockets).

I clipped my pokèballs on. My pokemon rushed up, and laughing I returned them. I left Sparky and Sallai out. Sparky bounded up to curl up in the hood of my blue jacket, and I zipped Sallai into the jacket as well. I locked the house up and set off for the Recreation Centre. I got there around 6:00. The party was going well, and as I let my pokemon out, I could smell the wonderful food. My tummy gurgled, and all of my pokèmon laughed at me. I laughed as well, and we grabbed a table. We chowed down to our hearts content, and the food was spectacular, as were the wonderful decorations. Tinsel hung in drapes around the booths, and tiny silver bells hung from the tinsel. Holly was wound into the tinsel, creating a holidayish effect.

Desiring some fresh air, my pokèmon and I wandered out into the garden. I collapsed onto a park bench, and my pokemon and I happily watched the battles. We had just watched an interesting match between a Meowth and a Cubone, and an Elekid and an Ampharos. A trainer approached us. He had blonde sandy hair, and was decked out in red and greens. He smiled and said “Hi, my names Sam. Fancy a Battle?” I smiled at him, accepting his helping hand up. “How could I refuse such a charming proposal?” I said with a laugh. We walked to a free space, my pokemon clustering around me. He rolled a pokèball that burst open in a flash of white light to reveal a chittering Aipom. It pranced around, before sitting calmly before us.

I thought for a moment, and then I sent Sparky forward. “Ready to go Sam?” I goaded. “Ready as I’ll ever be! Lets go!” He yelled I grinned. This would be good. The snow crunched over foot, in a light frosting, revealing the grass. It would make for treacherous footing.

Sparky, Pichu Lv.8 VS Aipom Lv.6

Sparky’s Pov
I circled the Aipom, searching for a weakness. I feinted a few times, and he responded quickly. His trainer commanded him to use Slam. He ran forward, and I went to dodge and avoid it, but I slipped sideways in the snow! The slam got the right hand side of my body. I got up a bit stiffly. We circled in the snow again, the Aipom sliding around a bit. I headed for the deeper snow, jumping up on top of a drift. As the Aipom got closer, I tail whipped him back down the slope.

He glared, and started climbing the slippery snow bank. I slipped away, getting up behind him. I charged up, feeling my cheeks begin to warm up. Small sparks started to fly from my cheeks. My cheeks started to give off a yellow glow, and sparkle up with electricity. I waited, the charge building, then I launched and arc of bright yellow electricity up in the air. It arced over the drift towards where the Aipom had nearly got to the top. It got the Aipom good, and it twitched a bit. I copped a bit of backwash, and I was pulverised by a strong electric current.

I looked up to see the Aipom slam me again. I picked myself up again angrily, chasing after the Aipom. It chittered laughing, and bolted in the snow. It moved quickly, but I slipped over the snow, using its slipperiness to my advantage. As I neared, I started form a small white ball behind me. This would only work once. “Hey, you stupid Aipom!” I yelled. It looked back and glared. “What are you saying pipsqueak!” It said, glaring. I grinned. “Your so stupid you couldn’t climb a tree without hurting yourself!” The Aipom growled long and low, and launched itself at me. I danced back, and skittered a small red and green glowing present across the snow. I moved back, watching as the Aipom curiously circled the present, sniffing it. I grinned, as the Aipom touched it. My present attack blew up in its face.

The Aipom’s face was black and sooty, and there was a small crater in the snow. It tottered around for a minute, before falling over gazing up, its eyes whirling. I grinned. That had been fun.

Sparky grew to level 9!

Sam returned his Aipom grinning. “Good battle. Lets turn it up a notch!” I grinned, waiting. He tossed another ball, and in a burst of white light, it revealed a grinning Meowth. I bit my lip, looking at Sallai. Could she do it> The Meowth was a pretty high level…….I shook my head. I knew that she could do it. I beckoned her forth. Sam s******ed. I glared at him and he shut up. Sparky gave Sallai a few last minute pointers, and she nodded, stepping forward as the battle began.

Sallai, Ponyta Lv.6 VS Meowth Lv.10

Sallai’s Pov
I slowly looked the Meowth over. It was lean, and muscular. It was sitting on its haunches preening itself. It looked over at me, its coin glittering. “You might as well give up now you young fool, for I shall win.” I merely shook my head and snorted. The snow underfoot was crunchy, and most of it had been cleared away to reveal the slick grass beneath. I cautiously tested it out, noticing that I had to grip firmly with my hooves for a good purchase.

The Meowth finally got to its feet. “Lets go then child.” It said amiably. I growled, shifting to a battle stance. It prowled around me, cautiously sending out scratch attacks to test my reaction. I let most of them hit me, hoping to fool him. He boldly came at me headfirst, paw outstretched. I whinnied, and dug my heels into the grass, galloping forward into a tackle. I hit him square in the chest and sent him flying backwards into a snowdrift. He picked himself up angrily, muttering.

“Meowth, Pay Day!” Yelled his trainer, fists clenched. Crystal merely smiled at me, her hands in her pockets. The Meowth started throwing change and bright shiny coins at me. I dug my hooves deep into the grass, and dodged randomly from side to side in a zigzag pattern, slowly inching closer to him. The Meowth started to slow down, then stop. I got even closer, when he stopped me with a ferocious leer attack. I froze, and he violently scratched me. I shook my head, the pain clearing away my fear. I snorted, pawing the snow, and rushed forward. The wily Meowth waited, then jumped and scratched down my flanks. I screamed in pain, limping to a halt. My breath hung heavy in frozen clouds on the chilly night air.

The Meowth checked under its nails. I started to Growl, long and low, ominously. The Meowth looked up, startled. I charged forward, and whipped around, belting into the Meowth with my hind legs, launching it into the air with a mighty double kick. I limped to a stop, stunned. So that was my birth move! The Meowth’s body bumped along a bit to lie in a crumpled heap. I moved closer carefully, in case it attacked again. The Meowth raised its self slowly. “Good battle little one, you’ve got the fighting spirit.” He said with a grin. “Thank you…” I said, a little uneasy. The Meowth’s trainer came over and picked it up, giving it a potion.

I walked back to Crystal, who gingerly hugged me. She pulled some bandages out of her pocket, and wrapped me up. The bleeding had stopped by now, from that last deep scratch. She congratulated me, and so did the rest of the team. I smiled, happy. Then everyone trooped back inside, to get out of the cold. As I stood in the doorway I turned around, realising with a shock that I had battled right under the rising full moon….

Sallai grew to level 8!

I was very happy with Sallai. She had battled well, and had shown her birth move, as well as her fighting spirit. I knew that she would be a powerful fighter someday. Everyone ambled back over to the buffet table, smelling the delicious variety of foods. I loaded some trays and bowls up, perilously carting them to the booth that we had used before. My pokmon happily chowed down into their second helping, enjoying the delicious food.

There was a very festive air around, with all the beautiful decorations and such. Even the trainers were decked out. Most of my pokèmon were starting to snooze, when someone slid into the booth. “Mind if I join you?” Asked Sam. I was startled, but complied. “That was a pretty magnificent battle out there, and your pokèmon are really well trained.” I commented to Sam. “Thank you.” He replied. “Your little Pichu and Ponyta are pretty gutsy themselves. I’ll need to train my pokèmon up some more.” He said, smiling as he patted his pokèballs. I grinned.

I carefully returned most of my sleeping pokèmon, leaving out only Rosy, Silk and Sparky. Sallai was wrapped up snoozing in my coat. Rosy and Silk were curled up together watching us interestedly, with Sparky in a ball on top, his little black ears a twitching. I grinned at them and Sparky pulled a face, tumbling off Silk’s smooth coat. We all laughed as the grinning Pichu pulled himself back up. Sam got up, dusting himself off. I got up as well, doing the same. My pokèmon bounded over to me, Rosy and Silk settling on my shoulders, and Sparky curling up in my hair. I gently freed Sallai from my coat, putting it on. Sparky curled up in the back of the hood, and Silk and Rosy cuddled up into my hair. I carefully zipped Sallai into my coat. Sam bid me a goodnight and we said goodbye. As I walked back from the party, I mused over the battle. I had been really good. I stopped off at the pokècenter to have Sallai healed, and Silk Rosy and Sparky all fell asleep.

I smiled as I walked home, having safely tucked them in their pokèballs. I unlocked the house, and then shut it up for the night. I changed into my pyjamas, and clambered into bed, letting all my pokèmon out. I fell to sleep under a nest of pokemon curled all around me, and dreamt about baby bunny rabbits, kittens and puppies dancing the tango.

Lady Vulpix
30th December 2002, 09:51 AM
Shadow, I'll read your story ASAP. Sorry for the delay, I can't believe it's almost January and I'm still busy with university stuff.

Everyone, here's a message I got from Tara (Mist).

"Hope everything is okay back at the board and
Dragon Tamers. I'll be back around the 15 - 18th of January - and I'm
a great time. ^_^ It's been great so far, and I've still got so long to
Make sure you tell everybody I said hi and that I miss talking to you
heaps - tell Ryan that the sk8r girl will be back soon and just tell
everybody taht I miss them a lot!

See u l8r

Luv Tara"

Last Exile
31st December 2002, 05:23 AM
Awww, I'm referred to personally! Sweet! :)

Okay, 2003 is on us. Lazy part of my summer is over. Time to get active again. I'll start working on this before it gets ridiculous. ;)

Thanks for notifying me about Tara's message Gabi! :)

Happy New Year to you all!

PS. Gabi, I've decided that since Tara won't be back for three weeks, that I was going to finishing writing something for This Fic. I did partially discuss it with her on AIM but I didn't get her response. Could you tell her in your next message to her about this and see if it's okay with her? I don't want to go ahead with it if it isn't fine with her.

Lady Vulpix
2nd January 2003, 06:26 AM
Shadow gets 14 stamps! Well done! I especially liked your 2nd battle. ¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢

You're welcome, Ryan. I'll tell her. By the way, I'll hand in my project on Friday and then I'll do my best not to get ridiculous either. :D

Lady Vulpix
6th January 2003, 12:03 PM
<Gabi's POV>

Let's pick up from a morning like any other. I, like all other Dragon Tamers and practically all pokemon trainers in Caledor, had received the invitation from the trainers at Porygon Valley to test our skills against their specially trained Porygons. However, I'd soon realized I wouldn't be able to attend, since I was up to my head with studies and work. Besides, my eyes were very sensitive and the invitation said something about some extremely bright light all trainers would have to look out for. It sounded like something I wouldn't mind missing; at least not too much if it was for a good reason like passing my exams.
So, that morning I was studying hard, and kept at it until not one more typed character could fit into my head (yes, it was one of those awful subjects which were all about memorizing stuff). Then I took a shower to give both my mind and my body some rest. After spending about 5 minutes cleaning my skin and about an hour getting my hair to look decent (job which, this time, also involved cutting a small strand of hair that stood out for being longer than the rest, and which I'd been putting up with for years until the rest of my hair was finally long enough), I put my clothes on and got out. When I reached the computer room, which was also my studying room and a storage for non-literary books and stuff which was needed every now and then, I found out I was not alone. Ventura, my Venomoth, was standing on the wall.
I picked up my glowing stone, which currently qualified as "stuff that was needed every now and then" and was, therefore, in that room.
"It's good to see you're not afraid of it anymore," Ventura commented.
"The stone? I can't say I'm quite comfortable with it, but I've concluded that warnings come for a reason and it's better to confront them before it's too late. If something bad is going to happen, we'll find out sooner or later anyway. It'd better be sooner," I explained. "Besides, it's useful to talk to you when Caledor is not around."
"Smart and brave. No wonder why I'm keeping you as my trainer," Ventura said.
"Are you mocking me?," I asked her.
"No! That was a compliment," she made herself clear.
"Oh, sorry, I never know with you," I tried to apologize.
"It's this word thing. Why didn't anyone invent a language with no ambiguities?," Ventura complained.
"There are some mathematical languages like that," I informed her. "But they're useless for everyday communication. And there's no chance to express feelings with one of those. I think feelings are ambiguous by themselves."
"I see. My telepathic pulses can't express feelings either. It would be better if we were all like Lagi," Ventura suggested.
"I don't know. Lagi's had many bad times because of her abilities. The confrontation with the Black Battalion nearly broke her soul. She's strong, but I don't think the whole world would be prepared for that. Though there would probably be no wars..."
"To achieve that you'd have to wipe all sadists off the face of Earth," Ventura corrected me. "Knowing what others feel doesn't always mean caring about it. Some actually enjoy watching others suffer."
"I guess you're right," I admitted. "It may be better for us all to keep what we have. Though I wonder if that includes this stone."
"Ask the Vulpix who left it there for you," she said. "The stone was supposed to be in your hands."
"Do you believe in destiny?," I asked her.
"Hey, it was you who named me Ventura!," she retorted. "I don't know. I don't think everything is written; that would make life useless. But maybe there's a natural course of events and some things tend to happen, and some things should happen. What do you think?"
"I think this is the most interesting conversation you and I have ever had," I told her. "About destiny, I don't know. I probably agree with you. I have had premonitions, but I do believe in free will, and I think that the future, at least a big part of it, is built on the choices we make. If I thought there was only one possible result, then I wouldn't be fighting at all. But I've witnessed the results of the things I've done too many times to think I had nothing to do with them."
"And what if those things you did were the only things you could have done?," she questioned me.
"If there was only one possible option, then decisions wouldn't be so hard to make," I replied.
"Good point. It's good to have a trainer who can have this kind of conversations. I've seen many trainers who would have made my life a bore."
"Wow, thanks! Two compliments in one morning! Are you feeling alright?," I joked.
"Yes, but if that's the response I get, then I'll never compliment you again," she answered.
"Sorry, I didn't mean that," I apologized. "It's just... It's not usual for the two of us to converse for so long without having an argument."
"I can spend a long time talking when taking action is not urgent," she explained. "Why are you so afraid of arguing, anyway?"
"I don't know. I've been like this since I was a child. For as long as I can remember, actually. I've never liked it when those I loved were angry at each other, or at me. Maybe I'm just too sensitive. But I can put up a good fight when it's necessary. You've seen me do it."
"Just like Amber," Ventura laughed.
"I'm older than Amber, so she must be just like me," I joked. I believed in the symmetry of the likeness relationship, so I didn't mean what I was saying. I was just contradicting Ventura for the many times she'd done the same to me.
"Whatever," she simply responded.
"I was thinking..."
"Good habit," she interrupted. She must have taken that one from me.
"Yes, it is. I was thinking that you and I should do something together. I don't get to spend nearly as much time with you as I do with each of your teammates. Maybe I can make myself a few hours and we can spend some quality time together," I suggested.
"If you want to spend some quality time with me, take me to the Battle Tower. I haven't battled there since it re-opened, and pokemon can't issue a challenge without their trainers," she told me.
"So that's your idea of quality time."
"I'm not afraid of fighting. It's liberating. You get to take out all the stress that's brewing inside you and move some energy; it's a physical and mental challenge at the same time. And you always learn something, and you often get stronger in the end. Besides, in friendly matches there's no real danger. What else can you ask for?"
"I could ask for so many other things!..." I commented. "But it's ok. If that's what you want, I'll take you there."
"Now?," she asked. I looked at my books for a few seconds, and sighed.
"I've already got distracted, so I guess now is a good moment," I concluded. "Besides, I'll go crazy if I don't get out of this room today."

To make a long story short, we went to the Battle Tower followed by the rest of the team who were just as eager to taste some fresh air, and Ventura won a battle against a Clefable named Luna, once more showing what a good fighter she was. Right after the battle she made a comment about it being a pity that no fire pokemon were willing to battle her, to which Hero replied with "don't push your luck unless you want to test your skills against me." I guess she knew as well as I did that she had no chance against Hero's speed and fire; she simply responded that she'd take him up on that offer if she ever reached his level. I tried to imagine what a battle between the two of them would be like, and came to the conclusion that it would probably never end. But soon Tsunami warned the Venomoth that if someone was going to take on Hero, that would be him. And Hero told Tsunami that he'd already lost his chance, and that was the beginning of yet another of their comeback fights.
As for my exam, I failed, even though I'd studied to the point my mind was about to blow up. Actually, I came to the conclusion that it wasn't good to do an exam when my mind felt like blowing up, and decided to make sure I was in a better condition when I took it again the following week. Then, I followed my own advice, got up as late as I could (which took an important effort), I stopped studying an hour before re-taking the exam, and I finally passed.
Of course, I didn't neglect my work at the Dragon Tamers, which was quite heavy those days (as everything is in December). Many trainers were coming for new TMs, so I had to stock up all the time, and also arrange the regular shipments to Selenia. Fortunately, Amy and Connor were helping a lot. Connor even brought some new items for the Reward Center! We hadn't had anything new for sale for a long time.
And so days passed, carrying along weeks with them, and it wasn't long until the winter began, and holidays were on everyone's minds and mouths. That's when I realized everyone would be expecting the Dragon Tamers to have a big celebration like the one we'd had the previous year. Better, if possible. The problem was that Neither Scott nor Alex were here this time, and the thought of me organizing a Christmas party was ironic to say the least. I would attend just to be with my friends (and to see if John would show up again and answer all the questions we'd asked him the year before), but I wouldn't be decorating a tree, nor singing Christmas songs. Well, luckily for me, the problem was resolved before I had to take any decisions. I knew it from none other than Tara, when she asked me if I was going to attend the big Christmas celebration that was going to be held. I was so glad that someone else had already thought of that and set things into motion!
I soon found out it had all been an idea of a group of trainers, and they had started making the arrangements by themselves! Such efforts should be rewarded. I decided to offer my help. Someone suggested it would be cool to have pokemon battles during the party (a sign that a new generation was rising in Caledor), so I help them get some pokemon who were willing to challenge the Dragon Tamers. Then I left them to continue organizing everything, and went back to my pressing December routine... until the night of the party.

The faces I saw when I reached the Recreation Center, where the party was being held, were not the same as the ones that had been there the year before. Only a few were still there, and the rest had been... renewed was the most positive word I could think of. One thing was clear, though; those new trainers around me were Dragon Tamers (most of them, anyway). You could tell that from the way their pokemon roamed all over the place, meeting others and having as much fun as their trainers. That was a usual sight in Caledor, but something like that would have been hard to see in other places. Where I came from, even seeing pokemon walking besides their trainers was uncommon, unless they were being kept as pets in which case they would never battle nor work on improving their abilities.
I remembered my first reports about the search for a balance in pokemon training and the importance of communication between pokemon and their trainers years ago, the ones which had got me my passage to Ulthuan in the first place. This was one of those moments in which I realized how much my life had changed since I had come to Ulthuan.
So, everything was fine. Almost everyone was cheerful, and while there was a bit too much 'Christmas spirit' for my liking, my pokemon seemed to be having a good time and that made me glad. Well, all except Amber. She seemed to be a bit down. Strange, Amber wasn't one to feel sad at parties. Even though Sylvan was already taking care of her when I noticed something was wrong, I walked to her side to see what was going on. I felt grateful that I'd brought the glowing stone with me that night.
"What's wrong?," I asked the Charizard.
"She's worried about Volvagia and Alex," Sylvan explained for her.
"It's just..." Amber began. "By this time last year they were with us. Then they left... and they haven't returned yet. Do you think anything happened to them?"
I reflected for a few seconds.
"If something wrong had happened to them, we'd know by now," I concluded. "Last time I got a letter from Alex, he said that things were going well for him and that he was thinking of taking a new job in Canada. That was months ago and I didn't get any more news from him, but I think he's fine. Maybe war took a greater toll on him than he'd like to admit and now he's trying to start a new life far from Ulthuan and all its problems."
"Problems can never be solved by running from them," Sylvan remarked. "And what about his pokemon? Did he give them a choice? What about those who cared for them, like Amber?!"
"It's ok, Sylvan," Amber stopped her. "We all take our own decisions. I guess Volvagia's happier in Canada with Alex than here with me after all. I want what's best for him."
"This is a horrible situation," I commented.
"It's just a part of life," Amber pointed out. "You've had worst, haven't you? This was just... a case of a spark suddenly burning too bright and going out too fast."
She fought so hard to be strong inside! She reminded me of myself. But she couldn't hide her tears as they rolled down her cheeks. I hugged her. That was the best thing I knew how to do when someone I cared for was down. I knew well about the healing powers of a warm hug. Sylvan did her part by caressing her friend with her vines.
"I'll be fine," she said. "This is a party, so why don't we go and enjoy it?"
"Are you trying no imitate Caledor's unconditional cheerfulness?," Sylvan smiled.
"Caledor and I have a lot in common," Amber admitted. "I guess I could learn a few lessons from him as far as cheering up is concerned."
"As long as you're honest to yourself about your feelings, go ahead," I told her. "Just don't try to mask your sorrow. It will hurt you in the end. Those words must sound hard, but I've seen them come true too many times."
"Don't worry, I know myself," Amber replied. "I won't fall into that trap. Besides, I have you, and the whole team, and I know I can count on all of you for anything. I have a nice home and I know how to defend myself and no one forces me to do anything against my will, and I'm the only Charizard who has helped write a report that has been published. So I have lots of things to be glad about. And I'm still young, so I may fall in love again. Or... who knows... Maybe Volvagia will return some day."
"Maybe," I agreed. I must admit I had never felt so proud of her as I was feeling now.
The scene was interrupted by a group of kids who shouted "Look! She's hugging a Charizard!"
"It's hard to change the world, isn't it?," Amber reacted. I turned to the kids and spoke to them.
"Yes, I'm hugging her. She's my friend and I like hugging my friends. Is anything wrong with that?"
"No, it's just... weird," one of the kids answered. "Why does it let you hug it?"
"Because I'm her friend too," I told them. "Are you pokemon trainers?"
The kids looked at each other looking for a reply.
"Err..." one of them began.
"Not yet, but we want to be," another of them answered. "We can stay here, right? No one asked us for a license when we entered."
"Did you have to say that?!," his friend complained, hitting his side with his elbow.
"Calm down," I stopped them. "Yes, you can stay here. You don't need a license to cerebrate. But do your parents know you're here?"
"Yes, ma'am," the first boy replied. "They said we could come, it's just that we weren't sure. They said that if we talked to pokemon trainers it would be easy for us when we became trainers ourselves."
I had no way to know if he was speaking the truth or just making it up, but they all sounded honest. Well, all except the one with the quick elbow, maybe. I decided to let them stay and just make sure they didn't get in trouble.
"Ok, just let me fetch one of my pokemon," I told them.
I walked to Iael's side and asked him if he could look after the kids.
"Why me?," was his first reaction.
"Because you're the best at taking care of children, and you've already shown that to me. If you don't mind, that is."
"Well, I doubt that I'm the best, but... Ok, I'll do it. Thanks for trusting me."
"I always trust you," I assured.
I led Iael to the boys and introduced him to them. I asked them if they would like Iael to be with them for a while during the party. They were all very excited about having a pokemon to play with.
"Thanks! Now we'll be the best trainers in the world," one of them affirmed.
I laughed, and let them be. But it seemed that night didn't have the intention to let me be. No sooner did I turn away from the children than a slightly older girl grabbed my shoulder and handed me a piece of paper with a list on it. Even though the handwriting was clear, the contents of the list were indecipherable.
"What's this?," I asked her.
"It's the list of bands that are playing tonight. It was really hard, but we managed to get them all."
"Congratulations!," I told her.
"Thanks. Will you please announce them?," she asked me.
Now it was my turn to ask "why me?"
"Because you always make the announcements. They'll listen to you more than any of us," she explained.
"But it's your party, not mine," I argued.
"It's a Dragon Tamers party," she remarked. I sighed.
"I don't even celebrate Christmas. Scott used to make the announcements before I did."
"Who's Scott?," she asked, confused.
"Scott McHenry, founding Dragon Tamer!," I replied.
"Oh, that Scott! Hmm... I haven't seen him around."
"Neither have I. For months," I admitted. "Ok, I'll announce the bands. But first will you please tell me how their names should be pronounced?"
The young trainer giggled, but agreed to help me.

<Amber's POV>

Things were going well. After some time of listening to the bands, picking some food and being with my friends, I was actually beginning to feel better. I still had that bitter feeling inside of me, of course, but I was determined not to crossed to the side of those who spent the holidays whining. Then, before I knew it, the show was over and the other event began. The event most trainers were eagerly waiting for: the battles.
"So many of our parties were crashed, that having battles in them has become a tradition," Sylvan whispered to me. "It seems now they've decided to skip the crashing part and start their own battles."
I laughed.
"I'm sure this will be good news for Ventura and Iael. Or maybe Hero and Tsunami, or maybe even Caledor," I speculated.
"Well... I was thinking of getting some training myself," she said to me. "I don't want to get rusty, and my big and heavy body isn't helping. But I'll stay here with you if you need me."
"Oh, no, Sylvan, please don't!," I requested her.
"Hey, I didn't think I was annoying you so much!," she hollered.
"Oh, no, that's not what I meant," I corrected myself, embarrassed. "I meant that you shouldn't lose your opportunity to get the training you need because of me."
"I can always train later," she stated.
"I'll have more chances to be with you than you'll have to battle. Go ahead."
She didn't seem to be sure about what to do.
"Please," I insisted. "Don't make me feel guilty of making you miss a chance."
"Ok," she accepted.
At that moment, Gabi came to our side.
"This has been really tiring. I was really expecting to sit on the side this time," She commented. "I guess that's not possible."
"It's the price you have to pay for being so active," I replied. "And for doing things so well. On the bright side, the trainers love you."
"I'm not so sure. I don't know half of them," Gabi pointed out.
"Yet," Sylvan corrected.
"Yet," Gabi agreed with a smile. "So, where did the others go?"
"The other trainers?," I asked.
"No, I mean your teammates," Gabi said.
"Oh, Lagi and Pidgeot went outside to take some fresh air," I informed her. "Hero, Tsunami and Caledor went outside for anything but fresh air."
"Too bad. They'll miss the battles," Gabi concluded. "I know where Water Angel and Iael are. What about Ventura?"
"Can anyone really expect to know where she is?," Sylvan chuckled.
"I guess not," Gabi admitted. "So, Sylvan, would you like to have a battle tonight?"
"Did you read my mind?," Sylvan replied, astonished.
"I don't think so, though I can never know. Even less with this stone," she declared, showing the small white stone that was now tied in a collar hanging from her neck next to her amulet.
"You have an arsenal on your neck," I commented. "What made you put all that on?"
"It's just precaution added to a bit of acceptance," Gabi cryptically stated. "I've accepted the fact that the stone is useful and any premonitions it may give me are not to hurt me but to warn me and help me make things better. And I can't afford having it in my hand and losing it. As for the amulet... I'm not planning to use it anytime soon, but it's good to have a defensive weapon just in case. Besides, Ryan gave it to me, so it means a lot to me. And I like the way it looks too."
"Well, enough reasons, I say," I told her. "What's going on between you and Ryan anyway?"
"I wish I knew," Gabi answered. "So, Sylvan, are you coming? Many pokemon are already battling. We don't want to run out of opponents."
"There I go," Sylvan slowly stood up, turned to me one last time to ask me to wish her luck, and headed with Gabi to the center of the hall which had now turned into a battlefield.
"I'll go with you to watch you," I said, following them.

Almost everyone around was already engaged in battles. It was hard to find someone who was willing to battle Sylvan. The newer trainers still had low level pokemon, the older trainers were already battling... only some of the pokemon brought especially for this event were left. It was one of them who finally challenged Sylvan: a Scizor. Sylvan accepted the challenge.
"Are you sure?," I asked her. "He looks too strong."
"It will be just a friendly match," Sylvan told me. "I have nothing to lose. Besides, I have my lucky clover with me."
"I still don't get that whole friendly match concept, but if it's ok with you, then do it," I accepted.
"I will," she said, both to me and to the Scizor.
"Ok, make room for us!," the Scizor shouted. "I'm finally getting some exercise!"
The tone in which he said that gave me a bad feeling, but I thought it was just me. I was a weird pokemon, after all, I couldn't expect to understand those who were so unlike me.

Level 42 Venusaur vs. Level 55 Scizor

The Scizor didn't waste time and slashed Sylvan right away. Caught by surprise, Sylvan used her Hidden Power, but the Scizor didn't seem more than slightly annoyed at the burst of water. He hit her head so hard with his heavy metallic claw that I could almost feel her pain.
"You need to change your tactics," Gabi warned Sylvan. "Remember Ventura!"
"Alright, hold on," Sylvan acknowledged her suggestion.
"I knew you couldn't make it without your trainer's help," the Scizor teased Sylvan. "But speaking in code? that's totally unfair! What does Ventura mean?"
"It means fortune," Sylvan said, suddenly releasing her Sleep Powder. "It also happens to be the name of a good friend of mine."
"You'll have to do better than that," the Scizor told her, using his wings to blow away all the powder. Some of it blew in Sylvan's direction and she barely managed to dodge it. "But I won't give you the chance," he finished.
The Scizor raised his claw again, but this time Sylvan was prepared for it. She grabbed the claw with one of her vines and pulled it to the floor using the force of the Scizor's intended blow. The claw broke 4 tiles of the floor upon hitting them. Then, before the Scizor could react or release himself, she shot more Sleep Powder right at his face. This time, it worked.
"Thanks for your advice, Gabi," Sylvan sighed. She was agitated. "I'm glad I managed to understand it."
"I knew you would," Gabi told her. "You've watched all of Ventura's battles and you were always her favorite trainee. You know her better than anyone."
"I guess I do. Well, this isn't over yet. I'll try to recover before he wakes up."
Saying this, Sylvan began to heal herself with Synthesis. It was late and very little energy was left from the day, but she slowly managed to gather enough to recover completely.
"Should I wait until he wakes up?," Sylvan consulted Gabi.
"Would he?," Gabi wondered.
"Good point," Sylvan said. "For the blows I took I can tell he's not one to be concerned about his opponents. Well... I guess I'd better take my chance while I have it."
Spherical water bombs splashed into the Scizor's body, waking him up.
"How dare you dump water on me?!," he shouted. "Oh, it's you. Yes, you're an annoying little thing... well, big thing. More annoying than I thought. It's time to get rid of you."
If he had given me a bad feeling before, now he was really scary. He seemed to be taking the battle too seriously. He wanted to hurt Sylvan. I wondered if she'd be able to resist.
The Scizor begun to spin around. I'd seen other Scizors do that before. He was performing a Swords Dance.
"Sylvan, be careful," I advised my friend.
She was, indeed, careful. She watch the Scizor's every move, not losing track of his claws. She didn't attack. She seemed to be waiting until he stopped spinning. It was a risky strategy, but trying to attack at that moment could have been worse. Finally, the Scizor stopped, irritated.
"You're not even going to move?!," he yelled. "Ok, I'll finish you faster, then."
But before he could act up to his words, he was stopped by another blast of water.
"I'm beginning to believe that's all you've got, isn't it?," the Scizor inquired. "Ok, let's stop delaying it."
But it was delayed again, this time by the arrival of another Scizor. The new Scizor rested his claw on the first one's shoulder.
"That thing giving you trouble, brother?," he asked. "I've been waiting for you for about 10 minutes, you don't normally take that long to finish a battle."
"Oh, shut up, will you?!," the first Scizor shouted. "She likes going down slowly, that's all."
"She? You mean you're battling a female?!," the other Scizor laughed. "Have mercy on her and knock her out fast! I'll help you, we'll finish her soon and then get something to drink."
"I don't need your help, but if you need a punching bag I'll grant you a blow," the first one accepted.
"Hey, that's totally unfair!!," I interrupted them. "She's giving all she can, but she can't face the two of you. She's not a punching bag, she's a pokemon who's looking for a fair battle. But I guess the word fair doesn't mean anything to you, does it?"
"If we liked playing fair we wouldn't have got this strong," the second Scizor boasted, as if there were any merit in what he was saying.
"You're a shame for all pokemon," I told them.
"When I need some insults, I know who not to ask," the first Scizor teased me.
"Hey, you look familiar!," his brother told me. "What's your name?"
"Amber," I answered.
"Amber... Yes, Amber! Hey, brother, do you know who she is? She's the Charizard who doesn't like battles!"
"There's more than one Charizard who doesn't enjoy battling for the sake of it," I pointed out.
"But you're the one from the report, aren't you? You're a sweetie! And now you are confronting us?"
"Oh, you must understand her," the other Scizor joked. "She's afraid that we might hurt her little friend. That's what weak cuties like her do. They stick to their friends all the time."
I was beginning to get enraged, and I didn't like that. And it was getting worse.
"Do you really think they're just friends?," the second Scizor rode on his brother's story. "I think they're lovers! Oh, yes, look at them! They were made for each other!"
"I will attack you if that's what it takes to teach you some respect," I warned them.
"Oh, isn't he cute?! She says she will attack us now!"
"You and what army, sweetie?"
"Hey, I know! You're not the Venusaur's lover! You're her bit¢h!"
"That's it! You've asked for it."
They had gone way over the limit. I let out all the fire that was burning inside me in a huge Fire Blast that caught the Scizors off-guard. The flames embraced them and made their red color look brighter. I didn't know if they had learned their lesson, but they were clearly suffering. Maybe I had overestimated their strength, or underestimated the damage a fire attack can do to a Scizor. I had gone over the limit too!
"Sylvan, use your Hidden Power, Fast!," I cried out.
Sylvan acted without even turning to look at me. I wished I knew what she was thinking at that moment. If she was concerned about the Scizors, if she was ashamed of me, or maybe sorry. In any case, the water put out the flames. The first Scizor was already down, and the other one didn't look too fit. He had swallowed some water and was now coughing.
"See? That's why I don't like battling!," I cried. What a night I was having!
"It's a pity," the remaining Scizor told me. "If you joined us, we could turn you into a powerhouse."
"That's not what I want to be," I explained, trying hard to swallow the fact that he was still insisting on his point of view. "I guess neither of us will ever change the other."
"I guess so. As I said, it's a pity. Now move, I have a battle to finish for my brother. Once I've brought your friend down we can go our own ways."
Well, at least he was back to calling us friends. I wondered why the guy irritated me so much. She wasn't very different from the average bully. And while I hated bullies, I'd never expected to react that way when facing them. Maybe I didn't know myself as much as I thought. I'd have to find out.
"Now this is something my brother hasn't learned yet," the Scizor announced. He brought his claws together and a small sphere of orange light began to glow inside them. It grew bigger and bigger, and before Gabi and I could shout "Slyvan, watch out!," a tremendously powerful beam had already been released.
Sylvan tried to move aside, but the Hyper Beam was faster than her and hit her on her side. She was sent rolling on the floor, and both Gabi and I had to move aside to avoid being rolled over. But Sylvan managed to stop herself and stand back up.
"Are you alright?," Gabi asked her before I could.
"I'm fine. I have to thank my clover again," Sylvan replied. "I'm fed up with this brag, Amber, will you lend me a hand... or a wing, so that we can get this over with once and for all?"
"Me? But..." I began.
"You don't have to if you don't want to, but I think you'll feel better," Sylvan told me. "Just a little Wing Attack."
"She won't do it, don't you see she's afraid of herself?," the Scizor spat out, showing signs of agitation.
"I do. And I want her to prove to herself that she has nothing to fear," Sylvan said with a smile. Then she turned to me. "You can control your strength. I know you can, so now go and show what you can do."
I wasn't very sure about that, but I decided to trust her. I walked towards the Scizor and slapped his chest with my wings. I knew a Wing Attack couldn't be nearly as destructive as a Fire Blast, so I moved my wings fast, trying to inject exactly the required strength. It turned out to be a weak blow.
"Well, I knew it wouldn't be as strong as a fire attack, but I thought he would at least say 'ouch' or something," Sylvan commented.
"You won't get that sound from me," the Scizor said.
"Ok, then, I'll be content with a 'splash' sound," Sylvan decided.
She looked so confident, so determined... I could hardly believe she was the same Sylvan I'd known years earlier, who needed guidance and protection on her every step. Now she was guiding me. It felt nice. No, it felt great.
Sylvan released her Hidden Power again, making the Scizor fall on his elbows. But he wasn't down, not yet.
"Stay this slow and I will recover and finish you," he ranted.
"What's with you and finishing us? Keep talking like that and you'll never catch your breath," I retorted.
I decided to try again, another Wing Attack, but this time with no restraints. I knew my Wing Attack wouldn't hurt such a strong Scizor badly. With any luck, it would simply shut his unbearable mouth. I raced towards him, hit him with both wings, and... his shoulders gave way. Before passing out, he managed to utter these words.
"Ok... you win... cutie."

Both Sylvan and I grew to level 44. I learned Dragon Rage!

I slapped my head.
"What does it take for them to stop?!," I shouted.
"They have stopped now," Sylvan said, stretching out a vine towards me. "You shouldn't get so mad about them. They're just morons."
"My parents suffered a lot due to morons like them," I told her, finally starting to understand where all my rage had come from. "They'll never leave us alone. I hardly ever got to see my father because of them. Well, them and the fact that he lived under the water. But now that I think of it, I guess I wouldn't even have been born without those stupid fighting machines."
"That sounds like a very interesting story you're going to tell me as soon as we get home," Sylvan said with a smile. "Hey, wait, you're not referring to that group of Gyarados who lived upstream, right?"
"Yes, them and a group of killer Charizards who lived in a distant valley I never got to see and never intend to. It's good to talk to someone who knows about the place where I grew up."
"It was good to grow up there too," Sylvan affirmed. "I just wish we had met while we were there. We could have helped each other a lot."
"Well, we're doing it now," I pointed out. "Thanks a lot for helping me today."
"It was the least I could do for the million times you helped me," she said. "Including today, only a minute earlier. You saved my leaves, do you know that?"
"Knowing how much you care for your leaves, I'm really happy I could help," I smiled.
"You're finally smiling!," Sylvan cheered. "I knew something good would have to come out of this."
I laughed, and so did Gabi, who was evidently overhearing our conversation.
"I'm tired," I told Gabi. "Can we go home now?"
"Yes, I'm tired too," Gabi said. "I guess we should go home before someone else comes here with more announcements for me to make. Let's gather the rest of the team."
"I can do that," Ventura suddenly popped up.
"So you finally decide to show up," Gabi remarked. "What were you up to?"
"I was supervising the light show," she answered.
"What light show?," Gabi inquired.
"The beautiful light show you missed because you were so concentrated in the battle. But don't worry, I'll come up with a better one for New Year. I can't blame you, though. It was an interesting battle. I especially liked the part where you said 'remember Ventura'."
"You were watching us," Gabi affirmed more than she asked.
"Everything up to the part where those Scizors started getting nasty. After that I knew they would be taken care of and went to check on the lights. I used a few powders to change their colors and added some psychic effects too. I think they will remember the show for a long time."
"You didn't give anyone a headache, did you?," Gabi inquired.
"No, just a few flashing lights, and only for those who were interested. i didn't interfere with any battles or anything. Wouldn't do anything to hurt anyone, you should know that."
"I must give it to you. You have more initiative than any other pokemon I know," Gabi commended her.
"I know, sometimes I think I was born the wrong species. But then again, I love my abilities and only by being a Venomoth I can use them all. So I'll stick to being just as I am."
"It's not like you have a choice," Gabi pointed out. "Just don't use your psychic abilities too much. They can be a double-edged sword."
"I know. I have much more experience with them than you do," Ventura replied.
"Don't start it, please," I interrupted them. "There's been enough fighting for one night."
"We were just conversing," Ventura laughed. "You know Gabi enough to know she's far from mad right now. And I'm just being myself."
"There are many ways to be yourself other than showing opposition all the time," Gabi winked. "Now will you please fetch the others as you so kindly offered minutes ago?"
"Yes, my trainer," she said, puffing away.

7th January 2003, 09:28 AM
Um… I am new at this… so I'll attempt to post something… and if its messed up, correct me ^^;; I'm not sure how leveling up works… so I'll edit when I know.

Lorelei (Shadowfax, Ponyta, Female, Level Seven)
Snort. Huff.

Th sounds arose from outside, and I sleepily rolled over in my sheets, facing my digital alarm clock. It was a couple minutes past seven in the morning. Dragging myself from the warm bed, I opened the window and poked my head out.

Down below, the white ponyta stood in her paddock, a mere filly, just level seven. The snow all around her was melted, and most of the snow was gone in and around her corral due to her flaming body. The annoyingly high steel fence was slicked in clear ice, and snow was falling heavily. Any falling snow within two feet of her was evaporated. The sun was just rising. She gave me a look that plainly stated; "Get up now, or I'll pound the living crap out of you."

With a grin, I watched her calmly, and told her; "Why, Shadowfax, must you rouse me in the early hours of the day, with only an excuse as today there's a party?"

With a teasing shrug in a horse-like way, Shadowfax turned in a complete circle, turning back to face me, then showed me a playful rear before breaking into a brisk trot, turning a clump of what little snow there was left into grey slush. Then she stopped, turned, and threw up her head indignantly.

"Up! Get up and out of the house!" she seemed to scold in her horse voice, nickering loudly.

I smiled and pulled a sugar cube from my dresser drawer. I flung it casually down into the wet grass below, and Shadowfax snuffled around to find it, then crunched down on it while I got on my coat and shoes.

As I entered the paddock, Shadowfax let out a squeal of delight and came barreling into me, bumping against me with her shoulders, nearly knocking me down. For a young filly, she was quite big, with a handsome head with large, kind black eyes and a broad forehead. She had a long, thick but elegant curved neck; long, well-sloped shoulders with well-defined withers; a short, strong body with a wide chest and well-sprung ribs, a sleek pale white color, with very broad rounded hindquarters with a low-set tail. Her clean-cut, elegant but strong legs were long, with hard hooves stronger than diamonds. Her white firey mane and tail was flickering in the snow, burning intensely, but not painfully. She was about 13 hands high… a tall height for such a young foal of a Ponyta.

I placed a hand on her muzzle gently and stroked her face for a moment, before she tore off in the other direction. I smiled, and she turned around and wheeled back at me, nipping me gently in the arm as she passed.

I ran after her, tapping her withers gently, and turned and ran away. She followed, bumping me so hard that I tumbled forwards slightly, landing on my knees in the soaking grass. She came up and was towering over me, so I pulled myself up and onto her back. She gave a little happy whicker, breaking into a smooth canter, without a bit or a bridle, and I gripped her mane gently for steering.

However, this morning she wasn't in the mood for listening. Instead, she turned and bolted in the opposite direction, jerking me around slightly. She usually bore me proudly with a lofty way like she was proud to carry me, and liked to show it off, almost.

"You rebel." I teased, hugging her. She whickered back as if to say; "So what?"

The morning and afternoon passed quickly, and we spent it grooming all the dirt from her classy white coat. It was something she did often; roll in mud. I ate lunch outside that afternoon too, and as she munched on her oats/mollases combo and hay, I ate my chicken noodle soup.

Evening arrived, and I mounted Shadowfax with a grin and heeled her lightly, and she obliged bypulling foreward smoothly, her hooves gently striking the road as we rode on. It was five minutes by time we reached the party, due to her never ceasing energy and speed.

And outside, my level seven Ponyta spotted a Pokémon. Like a little fuzzy monkey, an Aipom. She watched it wryly before bending her neck and turning her head to look at me with a look that stated; "Let's get him!" all over it.

With a laugh, I dismounted off of her and got ready to start.

Shadowfax the Ponyta (L7, Ember, TailWhip) VS Aipom the Aipom (L6, Scratch, TailWhip, SandAttack)

"Shadowfax!" I called. "Use Tail Whip!"

Shadowfax happily agreed, galloping over to the ugly purple monkey, she whipped her tail at the thing, lowering its defense, and its comical grin was wiped off its face as the flaming tail streaked across it. Funny, you'd think a tail of fire would hurt.

The Aipom obviously didn't like it, and he hopped up and down, before leaping up and digging its claws into Shadowfax's face. Shadowfax didn't really like this, so she threw her head around to dislodge the monkey hanging on her face, eventually flinging it like a rag doll ten feet in the air. Bright red scratch marks blossomed over her face.

"Ember!" I commanded, and the spirited horse Pokémon reared slightly, standing over the monkey, and she torched it mercilessly.

The monkey didn't move for a moment, and I thought it was fainted, and Shadowfax must have too, because she lowered her head to the blackened pile of dark purple that was a monkey-Aipom thing.

But then Aipom snapped his or her head up, whatever, and kicked up a considerable amount of dirt in Shadowfax's face. She squealed angrily, wheeling back and glaring at the monkey with fury, and she braced herself as she spat a fresh torrent of flamed, engulfing the monkey.

The Aipom looked very ragged when the flames died away. All his fur was sticking up in odd directions and he was pitch black except for his eyes. But it was still ready to fight, and it promtly whirled around and slapped Shadowfax in the hocks. Shadowfax's defence dropped, but she didn't look inpressed.

With one last ember without my command, the Aipom fainted.

"Nice one, Shadowfax." I congratulated her, gingerly taking out a potion and spilling it generously on her scratches. "You won."

Shadowfax the female Ponyta, level 8


Now I will wait to see if thats right before changing my sig…

Knight of Time
7th January 2003, 09:49 AM
Lorelei: Did you happen to check out the first page (it has the current scenario)?

Incase you are confused, the latter Pokemon in each group allows your Pokemon to go up two levels, and the first in each group lets your Pokemon go up one level when you win.

BTW, Lady Vulpix, just out of curiousity, but are we allowed to use the new TM compatibilities for our opponents (e.g. having a Meowth use Recover to make the battle more challenging)?

7th January 2003, 10:36 AM
Like I said, its my first try >_< …Well, I read the first page… so I dunno :confused: I understand that we go to a party and battle Pokémon there, that's as far as I know.

Aipom Of Doom
7th January 2003, 05:11 PM
Okay, I'm going to be taking a break from writing for a month or two (actually, probably to the middle of February). I've been playing on my Gamecube a lot, and I don't have too much interest in writing battles at the moment... Plus, I'm in my school's robotics club, and we're going to be building a robot over the next six weeks, which I plan to spend a fair amount of time on. However, I will still post and hang around TPM.

Anyway, one other thing I want to say: What is with the new rule that opposing Pokemon can't use any moves that they aren't able to learn in the video games? I see no point to that rule...

Last Exile
7th January 2003, 09:55 PM
I know how you feel Danny. I've finally broken the obsession with Super Smash brothers Melee, Sonic Adventures 2 (both GCN) and No One Lives Forever 2 (PC) then mum gets me Neverwinter Nights for Christmas! (PC) That and I'm trying to find work but can't. *sigh* But i'll be onto it soon.

Lady Vulpix
8th January 2003, 01:05 PM
Nice story, Lorelei! Take 7 stamps. ¢¢¢¢¢¢¢
You can write one more battle for this scenario.

DarkPrince, take a ¢ for your help.

Now, people, please don't assume any changes in the rules unless a Dragon Tamers worker posts the new rules.
As always, opposing pokemon can use any moves, but if they're moves they are not supposed to learn, then the story should contain an explanation on why they know them. As for moves that can be learnt in other games, a source that proves so counts as a good explanation.

By the way, Tara said 'Hi'.

Good luck building that robot, Danny!

And Ryan, don't give up. I'm sure you'll find a good job.

AntiAsh Superstar
9th January 2003, 07:03 AM
I may need a time extension for this scenario, I'm not entirely sure yet. I'm trying to balance revision and writing atm, for a start. And it's a party scenario, and I have Kirei and Becks on my team. The intro is turning out to be longer than I'd been expecting. :o At any rate, I'll ask for the extention, and if I don't need it all well and good, this is a warning just in case I do happen to need it. ^_^;;

Lady Vulpix
9th January 2003, 06:28 PM
It's ok, Ade. You have the extension. It will be interesting to find out what Kirei and Beckham are up to... :D

Lady Vulpix
11th January 2003, 07:37 AM
I'm going on vacation today. I'm going to Salta with my cousin Helena (http://www.boomspeed.com/ladyvulpix/gh.jpg). I'll be back on Wednesday 22nd, day in which I'll do my best to catch up with everything that's been going on here. All the Dragon Tamers topics will remain open thanks to Amy. :)
Take care and have a good time while I'm away (and after I get back too).
Amy, good luck taking care of the Battle Range! If you post the next scenario, you can edit the first post on this topic to link to it.
See you all when I get back!
By the way, thanks to those who read my battle.

Last Exile
12th January 2003, 01:27 AM
Have fun, Gabi!

Hmm, guess my scenario will be up soon. Good luck with keeping this up, Amy!

15th January 2003, 03:38 AM
^_^!!!! I made it back. I'm busy writng my story right now but my holiday was sooooooo fun! ^_^

I had a lot of fun and even though half of it was spent driving in the car n stuff it was fun. I even met up with fanfic mod oz andrew and he's totally mad. ^_^


15th January 2003, 07:08 AM
Welcome back, Mist. Hope you had fun. IM me soon

16th January 2003, 07:43 PM
I'm so proud! longest ive ever written!


Party Hard

<--- Shadow’s POV --->

After the whole Porygon incident things began to change. Pyro and Todd took Ashley to the Central Station at Caledor so that Ashley could catch a train to whereever Warren and all of his old friends were. I was wondering what about Ashley’s life in the Porygon Mountain place – but that’s one of the things that happens in the world of pokemon. Things are dropped, plans are never made, nobody gives a crap about schooling any more, you can have thirteen year olds living in houses and managing big families without a job.

Tara was doing it.

Fury and Shinoda had begun talking to one another. Nails and I had noticed slight words being exchanged ever since Shinoda had shouted the words of encouragement during Fury’s tough battle. Not much had been said, but Fury had also been talking to Nimmy and playing games with Nimmy and Charchoo.

Todd, Tara and Adam had become so much closer in the past week. The main talking topic though had changed from “What’s for dinner?” to “Christmas!” in about two days. Tara had also been talking a lot about her birthday – announcing every day the countdown to the 23rd, her birthday. But not much had been discussed between Adam and Todd and the rest of us when she wasn’t around.

It was about the 11th of December when Tara and Adam started to make some plans though. Todd was of course, allowed to input his opinions into the decisions, and whether Fury, Bam, Shinoda or Nails were allowed to or not, they also gave their view on things. Their two cents. I would occasionally suggest somethings but nothing like Fury had been saying.

¤*Merry Christmas!*¤

Tara & Adam

You have been invited to a Dragon Tamers Christmas Event
The annual Dragon Tamers Christmas Party is being held for all the Dragon Tamers members on the 22nd December. We hope you can come to this glorious event! There will be a feast, so please bring a small contributation to the cost of hiring catering and the hall. Guests are allowed, but please speak to one of the Dragon Tamer staff to notify them. Pokemon will be allowed. Please RSVP by December 18th.

We hope you can come!

Lady Gabbi Vulpix

¤*Merry Christmas!*¤

“Hey you should really check this out,” Tara spoke up after giving the invitation a quick read. “Can we go please?!”

“Why are you begging?” Adam asked. “I don’t care if you go.”

“Nah but I reckon we should all go,” Tara told Adam. “And you’re coming. Hey you never know, you might find some hot chicks there.”

Adam grinned, his eyes lighting up. “Okay I’m coming!” he agreed quickly.

“Todd you coming too?” Tara called.

“I’m on the phone!” Todd yelled back, then continued his conversation.

“So if we go you have to dress nice,” Tara began to tell Adam.

“What’s wrong with the way I dress?” Adam demanded defensivly.

“Well, just make sure that you iron your shirt and jeans – don’t grab them from the bottom of your wardrobe,” Tara advised. “And also, get your hair streaked or something. And you know what would look really good on you? How about –“

“Stop it!” Adam cried. “Stop the fashion tips!”

“Fashion tips?” Fury asked as she entered the kitchen. She headed over to the fridge and managed to get herself a drink with her paws. “You know what you should do Adam, you should try making it look like you’ve actually got an ***. I mean, you’re so skinny we could lay you on your back, naked, in a rain storm and you’ll catch all the water in your stomach. You know how far that thing dips in?”

“Fury!” Tara scolded, trying not to laugh.

“Hey!” Adam sat there on the kitchen stool, trying to think of a good comeback. Suddenly a thought crossed his mind. “How do you know what I look like without a shirt on? We haven’t been swimming yet.”

Fury paused, looking extremley guilty. Beginning to walk away, she answered Adam. “That’s for me to know and you to find out,” she told him before making a mad dash for the back room where Bam, Shinoda and Nails were.

“What did you say before?” Todd asked, coming into the kitchen and grabbing a can of Pepsi out of the fridge. Pepsi was the only brand of soft drink that was allowed in the house, Coke was a definant no-no.

“Oh there’s this really big Christmas party for Dragon Tamers,” Tara explained. “Adam and I are going, we wanted to know if you were going to come or not.”

“I’m not a member of Dragon Tamers though,” Todd shrugged.

“You don’t have to be,” Tara answered. “And anyway, you can sign up for it. It’s free, all you need to do is adopt one of the pokemon and you’re signed up. Either that or you can just register your own pokemon as Dragon Tamer pokemon. But when you have pokemon that aren’t regesterd Dragon Tamer pokemon they cant battle at really cool Dragon Tamer conventions.”

“If its free, I’ll sign up,” Todd shrugged.

“Let’s go down to the Dragon Tamers Center now then,” Tara suggested. “I think they’ve done renavations there or something so its probably gonna look totally mad!”


“Hey Shadow,” Rodney greeted, yawning as he came out of his pokeball. I had no idea why he had been in his pokeball but he was out now and that’s all that mattered. He looked tired, really tired. He just wasn’t the same shade of purple around his cheeks and underneith his eyes indigo streaks exposed how tired he was.

“Hey, you look really tired,” I commented.

“I feel really tired,” Rodney replied, stiffling yet another yawn. “I don’t know why either. I mean, I’ve been getting to bed on time and stuff. In fact I’ve been getting more than enough sleep.”

“I know, its been a while since I’ve talked to you,” I agreed. “You’re always sleeping latley.”

“Maybe I’m getting sick or something,” Rodney wondered. “I dunno. So what did I miss?”

“There’s a Christmas party going on,” I answered him. “It’s on in about a week or two, for Dragon Tamers and pokemon. And Tara’s birthday is soon. I’m going to get her a presant but I’m not sure what to get her. And how to buy it.”

“Maybe you should talk to Adam or Todd about it,” Rodney advised. “They’d be able to help pick out a good presant.”

“Maybe,” I shrugged. Silence fell over the two of us, and we just sat there, looking at each other. It was a pleasant silence, neither one of us wanted to disturb it.

Fury poked her head in the door, her messy fringe in her eyes. Shaking her head side to side, the hair was removed from her eyes and hung down the sides of her furry little face. “Yo, Shadow, Rod,” she began. “We’re going down to the Dragon Tamers Center – you want to come? Bam and I are staying here so you can stay if you want.”

I looked at Rodney, who looked back at me. “I think we’ll stay here,” I replied.

“Yeah,” Rodney agreed, stiffling yet another yawn.

“They’re staying here!” Fury hollered to Tara.

“Okay, if you need us ring one of our mobiles!” Tara yelled back before slamming the front door shut.

“I can’t believe we’re allowed to stay here on our own,” Fury grinned, taking a seat in the lounge room across from us. “How cool is this, just the four of us. Hey I have an idea! Let’s get out some ice cream, we’ll make some popcorn and then we can sit back and watch a movie or something! Tara and Adam have heaps taped, and I’m sure Todd has a few videos in his room.”

“Sounds fun,” Rodney replied in a quiet voice, tired. Fury reached over for the remote control and flicked on the TV. The TV had been turned off on channel two, ABC network, and instantly Fly TV popped up, playing one of the favorite songs of many that lived in this household.

“How do they know, what’s good for you?
Wake up wake up woah
Wake up wake up woah
A shot to the head
They’re better off dead
Will you wake up wake up woah”

“BAM! Goldfinger are on!” Fury yelled, instantly turning the TV up to full volume. “Forget the movie idea, Fly TV is on!” Fly TV was an incredibly popular youth music show on ABC, Tara, Adam, Fury, and a lot of the others loved it and the type of music they played.


Tara reckoned that the guys from Unwritten Law were cute, but I couldn’t see how that was.

“I’m going into the back room to watch Video Hits,” I told Fury, getting up and almost being barrled over by Bam, as the woolen ball bowled into the room and sat in front of the TV, banging his head to the riffs of Goldfinger, Open Your Eyes.

“I’ll come with you,” Rodney yawned. “I might like punk but I’m not in a punk mood right now.”

Switching on the back room TV, I grinned as an evil thought popped into my head. Come on, I wasn’t a dark pokemon for nothing, and what good is it being a dark typed pokemon if you couldn’t have a bit of evil fun? I instantly turned the volume loud enough so it could be heard over the ending of Goldfinger.

“When I was young it seemed that life was so wonderful
A mirical, oh it was beautiful, logical
All the birds in the trees were singing songs so happily
So playfully, so joyfully, watching me”

Rodney caught my drift and gave a small chuckle as we heard Fury cry at the high pitched helium like sound of Scooter and instantly hit the up volume button on her TV.

“There’s no money
There’s no possession
Only obsession
I don’t need that ****
Take my money
Take my possession
Take my obsession
I don’t need that ****”

“Take that!” Fury yelled.

“Papa Roach can kick Scooter butt anyday!” Bam added.

This was war. I turned up the volume louder on my TV, and the song changed once again. Scooter’s Logical Song was very quick, so it was replaced by another of the pop stars.

“The tide is high but I’m holding on
I’m gonna be your number one
I’m not that kind of girl
Who gives up just like that.”

“Take that!” I cried to Fury.

Fury’s reaction was putting her TV full blast. And of course as a reply, my TV went full blast too. Fury had a plan though, and all of a sudden the whole house was filled with Papa Roach as the surround sound was turned on to full.

“I win!” Fury’s faint cries could be just heard with all that sound. Light shone through the hallway that lead through the house as the front door opened. Fury and I didn’t hear the door open, I only saw the light through the corner of my eye, but I knew that suddenly, when it was all turned off, that something was up. No more Papa Roach, no more sound coming from the lounge room.

“WHAT IS GOING ON?!” Tara demanded. “I mean I love Papa Roach but WHY was it turned up full blast. AND WOULD YOU TURN DOWN THAT CRAP FROM THE BACK ROOM PLEASE SHADOW!”

I turned it off quickly. “Sorry!” I yelled.

“We were having a war,” Fury answered Tara meekly.

“Well there’s no doubt, Fury and Bam and the punk wins!” Tara announced. “Now I just have to grab my wallet, I forgot it, and also, no turning on the surround sound full blast because I don’t want the speakers broken. And Shadow, DON’T TURN UP THAT POP CRAP LOUD!”

“Fine,” I groaned, annoyed with Tara’s reaction to my taste of music. So I liked the R’n’B stuff, so I liked the Top 40. It wasn’t my fault I didn’t like punk. Tara grabbed her wallet, and pulled the door closed loudly behind her as she left.

Fury ran to the window and waited there for about three minutes, before grinning and running over to the surround sound.

Papa Roach continued to blast the speakers.

<--- Nails POV --->

Tara returned, looking annoyed yet happy. She looked like that when either she had her periods or Fury had done something totally wild yet funny. “Can you believe what that little furball did?” Tara came back talking as usual. When she got talking she was like a train with no breaks going down a hill, impossible to stop. “She was having a war with Shadow. Shadow had Video Hits playing in one room, full blast, she had Fly TV playing in the lounge room, surround sound full blast.”

“I wonder who won,” Adam kidded.

“I think it was Shadow,” Todd replied sarcastically.

“How stupid can you get, it was Fury!” Tara told them. “Surround sound, full blast, I heard those two before I even got to the house. But I didn’t really mind Fury having it up so loud. It was just the fear of the speakers blowing up. But having Video Hits up loud? That is a definant no no.”

“I know,” Adam nodded. “I paid for some of those speakers.”

“Yeah, you still owe me fifteen dollars for those speakers!” Tara cried. “Thanks fo rreminding me. Now fork over!”

“Geesh!” Adam sighed. “I think we better get jobs or something while we’re out. I mean, we cant live off the stamps that you alone receive for battles and stuff.”

“So the plan for today is go get Todd signed up to be a Dragon Tamer, go find a job or something because we’re running low on funds from the bank accounts, and then go have lunch or something,” Tara went over the plans, double checking.

“Yeah,” Todd nodded, smiling. Tara and Todd stood there, looking at each other for a sweet moment, letting Adam talk about something. Adam clicked his fingers in Todd’s face, and Todd jumped slightly, startled out of his gaze. “What?” he demanded.

“Are we going to go?” Adam asked impatiently. “I want to go grab lunch.”

“Where are we going to eat anyway?” Tara asked. “Because today I so don’t want McDonalds. I’m not… in the mood for McDonalds… know what I mean?”

“So now you have to be ‘in the mood’ to eat McDonalds?” Todd winked.

“Shut up,” Tara shoved him playfully. He stumbled sideways, and tripped on a jagged edge of concrete, falling into a street light that had been left on. Todd pulled himself up, then looked up at the streetlight, and around to see if anybody was watching.

With a swift kick, the street light went out as Todd kicked the box of it. “How cool was that!” Tara exclaimed. “How did you do that?!”

“Those type of street lights are kick-able out-able,” Todd replied. “Kick the front of the box and then ping.”

Adam suddenly cracked up laughing. Todd and Tara stared at him. “What was funny about that?” Tara asked, a bit lost.

“Remember, a few years ago at my party,” Adam spoke to Todd mainly but was involving us all. “Where we went hyper and ran outside the front of my house and kicked out all the street lights in my street! It was so dark! And then,” he now began explaining the rest to Tara, “after that Todd ran down the street next to mine and kicked out four street lights in a row. A few minutes later they started coming back on, except for the ones Todd kicked out. Three street lights in a row were broken thanks to him!”

I cracked up laughing, along with Shinoda, Tara, Todd and Adam. Nimmy was resting in her pokeball, too tired to walk and carry Charchoo – so Tara was carrying the Charmander plushie under her arm. We walked along the street until we turned onto the main road. Tara’s place was in a good location, about a five minute walk and you were on the main road, where the shops were, where everything was. The main road was long though, yet most of it was just housing. It was only if you lived close to the commercial part of the main road that you got to enjoy it.

No cars could really drive two ways through the commercial part of the main road. The footpaths were so wide that you could park a bus across them and have room. It was concrete so there were a few skaters down there, and across one side of the street it was lined with fashion and surf shops, restraunts, a McDonalds, an Aldi store, a few pokemon stores and of course, the Dragon Tamers center.

“Oh!” Tara squealed. Her face was pressed up against the glass window of a surf store. “Would you look at how nice that top is?” Aware that all behind her was quiet, she turned around. “Hey I am a GIRL you know, it’s a girl thing. Window shopping.” With that she turned back to the window looking through the store.

Adam gazed in the window at what skatie brands were sold there. Element, Enjoi, 323K13L, Volcom, Globe, all was good in Adams eyes. Then he saw the sign that shone with heavenly light (in his mind).

Help Wanted

Looking for a teenager
to fill a part time position.
If interested ask Derek
for details inside.

“I know where I wanna work,” Adam announced.

Tara looked away from the clothes, wondering where, until she too saw the sign that glowed under fluroesent lighting. “I’m working here!” Tara cried.

“No I am, you can’t work here,” Adam told her.

Instantly, Tara’s face became pouty. She frowned, and placed her hands on her hips, and looked up at Adam, who was much taller than her. “Why not?” Tara demanded to know.

“Look at the sign,” Adam pointed out the specific words as he read them. “A. Teenager. To. Fill. A. Part Time. Position. Not anywhere does it mention multiple positions or more than one teenager.”

“Then I guess you cant work here because I’m going to get the job,” Tara told Adam, turning around.

“No I’m going to get the job!” Adam pulled Tara back, trying to get in the store first.

“Oh I don’t think so, I’m getting that job!” Tara cried, pulling roughly on Adam’s arm, yanking him backwards.

I suddenly noticed something inside the shop, and trying to stiffen giggles, I pointed it out to Shinoda, who gave a snort then tried to keep quiet. It wouldn’t have mattered if we had been rolling around in laughter anyway, I suppose Tara and Adam wouldn’t have noticed if we rolled around in honey then in feathers right now. They were too busy facing each other, each with a determined glare on their faces, both competing for the same job.

“It’s going to be MY job!” Tara yelled.

“Tara, you know its my job,” Adam replied cooly.

“Mine!” Tara cried.

“Mine!” Adam cried back, playing along, only half serious.

“Mine!” Tara yelled back a little louder.

“Mine!” Adam squealed in a baby voice, louder than Tara.

Tara stopped, and eyed Adam, a sly grin on her face. Adam watched, not quite sure what was about to happen. Shinoda groaned. “She’s going for the final kill,” he whispered.

“MINE!” Tara shrieked. Adam shrank down, trying to avoid the unwanted attention complete strangers were giving.

“Tara,” Adam hissed. “You are REALLY embarrasing.” He wished that the concrete would swollow him up right now so he didn’t have to stand there.

“I win,” Tara shrugged, about to walk into the store.

Then she saw what Shinoda and I had seen. Derek the store manager, a shortish guy in his mid twenties with black hair spiked outwards, stood there talking to a person applying for the job. Derek wore an interesting short sleve plaid collared shirt, and a black tie with loose jeans and what looked to be either a Juice Ematic belt or an SMP belt. On his shoes were a really nice pair of Globe shoes.

The person applying wore the same white cargo pants and blue hawaiian shirt that Todd was wearing. He had the same steel ball chain around his neck as Todd had, his hair was spiked up at the front the same way that Todd’s was.

“Todd!” Adam and Tara cried, running into the store and up to him. “What are you doing?” Tara demanded.

“Todd’s coming back tomorrow for a trial work out to see if he’s good enough for the job,” Derek replied. “I’m Derek by the way.”

“I’m Adam,” Adam introduced, shaking Derek’s hand.

“I’m Tara,” Tara grinned, shaking his hand also. “How old are you?”

Adam nudged Tara in the side. “You’re not supposed to ask those type of questions,” he hissed.

Derek smiled. “Its okay,” Derek shrugged. “I’m not ashamed of my age. I’m 28.”

Tara shrugged. “I’m 14 in ten days,” she announced. “Oh by the way, can I get a job here?”

“Can I get a job here too?” Adam asked.

“Well…” Derek paused, thinking.

“Please?” Tara pleaded. Adam stood there, quiet, but pulling a puppy eyes look on Derek, kicking the ground with his scuffed shoes.

“Well…” Derek repeated. “I promised Todd I would check him out to see how he works, and then I’ll check you guys out too, but on separate days okay?”

“Thank you so much!” Tara cried. Tara looked around. “You have so much cool stuff here, how long have you owned this?”

“I’m just the manager, not the owner,” Derek shrugged. “But I started working here when I was like, eighteen or something.”

“Um,” Shinoda nudged me. “Look across the street at the Dragon Tamers Center. Can you read that sign?”

“Yeah,” I nodded.

“Read it then,” Shinoda replied.

I read it. “Um, Tara, Adam, Todd,” I began, pulling on Tara’s pants legs. “We really should go.”

“Why?” Tara replied.

“Because the Dragon Tamers center closes every day now at 2 and if we want to get lunch and stuff we’d better go now,” I told her.

“Do we have to?” Tara sighed.

“Yes,” Adam replied.

“Come on Tara.” Todd lifted me under one arm and Adam lifted under the other and they said good bye, dragging me out of the store.

“Bye Derek!” Tara waved.

“Bye!” Derek waved, his eyebrows raised. “Skaters,” he mumbled under his breath. “A bunch of psycho skaters. I like those kids.”


“Hey Gabbi! Are you working today?” Tara greeted Gabbi warmly, and loudly of course.

“Yeah,” Gabbi replied, looking up from the desk. “Do you want a drink or anything?”

“What you got?” Tara asked. “Any pepsi?”

“Yeah,” Gabbi nodded, going out the back and coming back with four cans. “Hey, Nails, Shinoda, you two can go out and talk to some of the pokemon in the adoption center.”

“Thanks, but I think I’ll stay here,” I replied.

“Same,” Shinoda agreed and sat on one of the plastic chairs next to me.

“You know you should really,” I began.

“Be friends with Fury again, I know,” Shinoda sighed. “But, I just cant.”

“When pride gets in the way of friendships, you start to wonder if pride is so good anyway,” I advised the fluffy Eevee.

“There is nothing in the world like pepsi,” Tara sighed.

“You know my brother is a coke drinker,” Adam told Tara.

Tara nearly hurled her pepsi. “Which one? Warren or Chris?”


This time Tara did almost choke. She looked up at Adam. “What?” she shrieked.

“Yeah I know,” Shinoda sighed. “But its so hard to be friends with her again, I mean, she did do the wrong thing.”

“But can’t you just put that all behind?” I asked.

“He’s too cute to be a coke drinker!” Tara yelled. “Besides he is a skater! Now that is totally unexcusable.”

“He drinks V at least,” Adam pointed out.

“Yeah but,” Tara began.

“I could, but you know,” Shinoda continued. “There’s that weird feeling of… weirdness.”

“Yeah but still, coke is just totally unexcusable,” Tara reasoned. “Todd have you finished filling them in yet?”

“No,” Todd turned back to his conversation with Gabbi and continued with the forms.

“Still, you’ve been friends for forever basically,” I told him. “Shape up man, come on. Do you want to fight forever?”

“Hey I drink Red Bull though, not V,” Adam replied.

“Red Bull isn’t as bad as coke,” Tara answered. “Coke is just totally unexcusable.”

“No but I don’t know how to be her friend again,” Shinoda replied.

“Why not just get her a Christmas presant?” I suggested.

“You know what would be the best,” Tara had that look on her face where she just had to burst if she couldn’t finish saying what she was saying. “Pepsi and V mixed together!”

“Pepsi and Red Bull,” Adam corrected.

“I wonder what Pepsi and V would be like,” Tara wondered. “You reckon it’d be sort of like Vodka and orange juice?”

“Yeah!” Shinoda exclaimed. “Didn’t Tara buy an earring or something? Think I should give her that?”

“I wonder what Vodka and orange is like,” Tara continued.

“You’re too young to drink it anyway,” Adam replied.

“Oh well I’ll see if I can get some at the Christmas party,” Tara shrugged.

“No try some egg nog,” Adam told her. “It is the nicest!”

“Yeah I think she’d like that,” I nodded. “What should we get everybody else?”

“Just candy canes or something,” Shinoda replied. “its not as if we make money or anything so we’re not really expected to buy them presants.”

“Candy canes,” I agreed.

“Alchoholic egg nog or non alchoholic?” Tara asked. “Oh well it doesn’t matter anyway, I’ll be going for the booze egg nog anyway. You know, I’ve decided, when I get married, I want to be drunk when I have sex for the first time.”

“What?” Adam cried. “Don’t be stupid.”

“No I’m serious,” Tara replied.

“What flavor candy canes?” Shinoda asked. “Cherry or peppermint?”

“What about those new candy canes that are like, covered in chocolate or something,” I suggested.

“Why not just buy the cheapest or something,” Shinoda replied.

“I think Fury and Shadow like the cherry the best,” I told him.

“Cherry’s more popular anyway,” Shinoda informed me.

“It is?” I asked.

“Yeah, I read about it in a magazine,” Shinoda answered.

“You won’t want to be drunk,” Adam told me.

“But I know I’m going to be really nervous and scared to have sex so I wanna just be able to have sex without knowing what I’m doing,” Tara answered.

“I wouldn’t want my wife to be drunk if I was screwing her,” Adam told me.

“Adam!” Tara laughed.

“I’ll be back in a moment,” Todd anounced.

“What magazine?” I asked Shinoda.

“Some magazine in a waiting room,” Shinoda shrugged.

“Well I wouldn’t!” Adam cried. “I mean, you’re supposed to TRUST your wife, not be drunk and not know what your doing.”

“Well I don’t know,” Tara shrugged. “It depends who I marry.”

“Marry me!” Adam cried, mucking around, using a fake soap opera needing voice.

“Oh Adam!” Tara played right along.

“It was saying all weird statistics,” Shinoda continued. “Did you know that 3 people in 1990 got cracked skulls from falling asleep while puking in a toilet.”

“No I didn’t know…” I replied, not sure if I wanted to know.

“I need you!” Adam cried.

“I need you too!” Tara sighed.

“I want you!” Adam told her.

“I want you too!” Tara grinned.

“Aaah!” Adam and Tara squealed and gave each other a big hug.

“What just went on?” Todd asked, coming out with a laminated membership card.

“Let’s see your photo!” Tara cried, snatching it off him and laughing. Adam snatched it off her and laughed.

“Let us see!” I called, and Adam tossed it over to me. I laughed, and handed it to Shinoda.

“Shut up! It’s a good photo,” Todd grinned, embarrassed.

“Why do you look like a monkey?” Shinoda asked, about as innoncent as Satan.

Todd walked over and snatched the photo off Shinoda, who was laughing like the rest of us. “This photo is going to never be shown again,” he announced, stuffing it in his wallet and into his back pocket.


“Please can I get the mango ice cream?” I begged. “Please!”

“So we’ve got one mango ice cream, one tripple swirl ice cream, one honeycomb with chocolate bits ice cream, one strawberry ice cream and one double choc ice cream, right?” Tara asked.

“Yeah,” Adam replied. “Waffle cones too.”

“Okay so how much is that?” Tara tried to work out, getting out her money. “I’m paying for Shinoda and Nails, each ice cream is about $3.50 each, that’s $7, $10.50 I’m paying. Todd, Adam, hand over your money.”

Tara collected the money and left. Adam made sure she was away before he started speaking. “What are we getting Tara for her birthday?” he asked quietly. “She’s made it really obvious that its her birthday in about a week.”

“Yeah,” Todd rolled his eyes. “She’s been announcing it everyday how long until her birthday.”

“One year at school she started counting down from March,” Adam told him. “But she lost her diary around about September, so we only heard the count down during December after that.”

“So what are you thinking of getting her?” I asked.

“Not sure,” Todd replied.

“She mentioned something about wanting some where to put her CD’s,” Adam suggested. “A CD rack?”

“Yeah I think she’d like that,” Shinoda agreed.

“How about –“ I began, but then noticed Tara returning. Well in hearing range. “We get some of that ice cream then brag to the other pokemon,” I finished.

“Don’t do that, that’s mean,” Tara told me, handing out everybodies ice creams. I slurped my ice cream. It was heavenly. Poor Fury she would be so jealous!

<--- Todd’s P.O.V --->

I looked at Tara, watched her in the kitchen, making breakfast for us. Today was my trial day for working at the surf shop with Derek, and I wanted to do really well. But right now, all my nerves were gone as I watched Tara whip up a nice breakfast for us for a change. Normally we just got ourselves cereal but today Tara had woken up early to make something.

Pancakes. The smell of cooking pancakes on the fry pan soon drifted through the house as she poured the batter on. I walked over to the breakfast bar, leaning on it as I looked into the kitchen, watching her cook. She was such a good cook when she didn’t stuff up recipies. One time she took mashed potato off the boil before they were cooked, added milk and tried to mash them while they were still hard. She ended up boiling them with milk.

“AAHHH!” Tara shrieked turning around and seeing me standing there. “Don’t DO THAT!” she yelled. “You scared the crap out of me!”

“Sorry!” I laughed back. She was so funny when bad things happened to her. So cute as well. “I didn’t mean to do that.”

“You want pancakes?” Tara asked, waving the frying pan at me. She put it back on the stove and flipped it with an egg lifter.

“Okay,” I replied. “Are you going to try that flippy thing?”

“I’m not going to be able to do it,” Tara answered. “But I’ll try!” She took the frying pan away from the stove and positioned herself to flip. The pancake went flying into the air, and Tara tried to catch it. It slipped out the frying pan and onto the tiles where Tara just watched it. “Oh well, I’ll eat that.” She put it on her plate and began making me a fresh one.

I stood there, watching her for a moment. I couldn’t be quiet too long, otherwise she’d think something was up. “You wont see me much today,” I told her. “It’s my trial at the surf shop remember?”

“Oh yeah,” Tara remembered. “Well I just hope you do really bad so that I can get the job,” she joked. “Seriously, I hope you do really well. Dude, I’ve only known you for like, a month or something, but I like, love you as a friend man.”

I hadn’t expected that. It felt nice to hear those words. “Right…” I nodded. I didn’t want to let her know that maybe there was a little crush on her inside me. I couldn’t. Because then she’d tell Adam and then he’d tease me for life.

Even if it was a little crush.

Little being the size of Fury’s mouth.

I wondered if Tara felt the same way sometimes, and at times I would think ‘Yes she definantly likes me!’ or ‘Maybe she does like me.’ But then I see the way she plays with Adam, and I realise that there’s no chance in hell that she would like me compared to him.

I was tempted to look in her diary at times just to see what she thought about me but I had a feeling she would be really annoyed with me if I did. I could sort of tell what Tara was like now. You do one thing, you can expect another.

“So you doing anything else today aside from working at Derek’s shop?” Tara asked out of curiosity. Some people would call Tara nosy, I’d just call her inquizitive and interested.

“Um… I might go by the Dragon Tamers Center, was thinking of getting a pokemon,” I answered. “Maybe a fire type or something.”

“You can’t get a Vulpix or a Houndour,” Tara told me. “Because I’ve already got them. Hey you know what I bought online last night? This.” And she walked over to the jar in the kitchen and pulled out something that I had only seen on shelves for about 20 stamps.

It looked like crystal, except it was a nice amber yellow color that shone in the kitchen flurecent light. Parts of the rock it came from still were around it, but the stone was polished and looked magnificent. I was just wondering which Eevee would want to be evolved into a Jolteon for Christmas.

“Which Eevee are you going to evolve?” I asked, reaching out to feel the smooth glassy texture of the Thunder stone.

“I don’t know really. I might ask Shinoda if he want’s to evolve or maybe I might just ahead and sell it for 15 stamps,” Tara shrugged.

“How much did you buy it for?” I asked.

“10 Stamps,” Tara grinned. “And if I sold it for 15 stamps that would be a 5 stamp profit! See I am good at maths!”

“So can you smell something burning?” I suddenly sniffed the air.

Tara gave a small squeak and ran over to the pancake, and flipped it to reveal a black charred side. “Oops,” she winced. “Oh well, this is Adams.”

“I know, I’ll just eat the one that fell on the floor,” I told her. “The floor is clean.”

“Yeah,” Tara grinned. “Now I’ll just make about a hundred more. Maple syrup is in that cupboard,” she pointed to a cupboard above the microwave, “and ice cream is in the freezer.”

“Thanks,” I replied, grabbing the maple syrup. “I don’t want ice cream.” I sat down at the table, and poured a river of maple syrup onto my pancake then began to eat. It tasted great! “This is really nice!” I exclaimed.

“Today I didn’t stuff up,” Tara grinned. “I’m so proud.” She gave her pancake a quick flip and it landed nicley on the other side, looking quite perfect.

“Hey Tara,” I began. “I was just thinking about the Dragon Tamers party. What’s it going to be like? And…”

Before I could finish Tara interupted. “They’re a lot of fun. I’m not sure what band is playing there but I think it might be a local band or something. There’s going to be heaps of cool stuff there, and yes there will be hot chicks there.”

“Cool!” I commented grinning. Tara sighed.

“You and Adam are exactly the same,” she shook her head, but she was smiling so she was really okay with it.

“That smells so nice!” Adam commented, inhailing the smell of pancakes as much as he could. “Where’s mine?”

“Over on the breakfast bar,” Tara replied, surprisingly not cracking up laughing. I stuffed my mouth full of food so I wouldn’t laugh.

Adam walked over to the breakfast bar and took a look at his char grilled pancake. “Tara!” he exclaimed, turning around. “What’s this!”

“Gosh I… Don’t know…” Tara answered innoncently. Adam stared at her. “Fine then! Here, have this one.” She reluctantly handed over her perfect one and began making herself another one. Adam sat down and snatched the maple syrup off me.

“Yum!” he exclaimed with a mouthful of food. “This stuff is great!”


“So basically what you have to do is serve customers,” Derek explained. “If you don’t know something, don’t worry, just tell them that you’re on a trial job and only new. They’re all pretty understanding so they should understand.”

“Okay,” I nodded. “How do I use the till?” Derek gave me a quick overview of the till, over a lot of information, then told me he would be out the back sorting stock if I needed him.

I went behind the counter, looking for something to do, but before I could a skater walked into the shop.

“Hey Ashley!” I greeted.

“Oh hey Todd, wassup!” Ashley replied, giving me the high five. “I didn’t know you worked here.”

“It’s like a trial thing,” I told him. “I might be working here later though.”

“Wow that’s really cool,” Ashley nodded. “Hey you reckon you can give me some discounts,” he added in a muck around low voice.

“Sure…” I grinned. “So what are you doing back here?”

“Thought I’d come for the Dragon Tamers party,” Ashley shrugged. “Wazza, me, and everybody else are Dragon Tamers members.”

“Every body else meaning…”

“Me, Wazza, Lachlen, Andrew, Toby, oh and a few old friends of Adam and Tara’s. There’s Evan, he’s such a spaz, Tarik, Alana, Badger, Caitlen and yeah, we’re all at the same church still so we’re all over here,” Ashley shrugged. “So anyway, I just wanted to know how much the boards are here.”

“Um…” I tried to think about what Derek said. “Boards are basically around $120 to $180 depending on what type of board you get. Decks are about $120 to $160 but full boards can go up to $180.”

“You sure you’ve only been here for today?” Ashley asked. “Seriously, I’m not here for a board, I’m just testing you.”

“Thanks a lot,” I grinned.

“I just need a new wallet chain,” Ashley told me. “About $20 right?”

“$16.50,” I answered, getting one out of the display unit. “Here.” Ashley and I exchanged a $20 for the chain and I handed him the chain. “So I’ll see you at the Dragon Tamers Christmas party right?”

“Yeah,” Ashley replied. “You’ll see all of us there. Our whole church are Dragon Tamers but only a few of us were allowed to come due to expenses and everything.”

“Cool, see you there then,” I told him.

“Will do,” Ashley tipped his hat at me and left, attatching his wallet to his chain. Struggling to attach it anyway, he was having a bit of trouble.


“Adam, I have to talk to you,” I hissed to him, popping my head in our room as he changed shirts. Nimmy had been feeling a little sick, and poor Adam’s shirt.

“Should I take a shower?” Adam asked. “Here, smell me, see if I need a shower.”

“Keep away from me man!” I exclaimed. “About Tara’s birthday.”

“Oh okay, hang on a second,” Adam went over to the door and shut it, making sure that Tara wasn’t near there. “Go on.”

“I think we should give her a surprise party, right after the Dragon Tamers Christmas Party,” I told him.

“Yeah,” Adam nodded in agreement, he came and sat on the bed next to me.

“And I saw Ashely today, they’re back in town,” I added.

“Yeah, Warren rang today,” Adam told me. “There’s like a big group of our old friends, Evan that spastic, Alana, Caitlan, Badger and Tarik are here.”

“So we invite all of them? What about your brother and his friends?” I asked.

“Yeah invite them too,” Adam agreed. “Tara always has thought that those older guys were cute and she has this sort of, admiration for them. Invite them.”

“We have to do some planning,” I told Adam.

“How are we going to get rid of her?” Adam pointed out.

“Derek might be able to help,” I mused. “Hang on a second.” I reached into my pocket and pulled out my mobile. Going through my phonebook, I came up with Derek’s number and grabbed the phone by the bed and dialed.

“Half Pipe Surf n Skate, Derek speaking,” Derek answered.

“Derek, it’s Todd,” I began.

“Oh yeah, you did a good job today,” Derek told me.

“I need to ask a favor,” I told him. “I need you to get Tara to work there for tomorrow, can you do that for me? Because we’re planning a surprise party for her and to plan it properly we need her out of our hair. Can you please get her to work for you tomorrow?”

“Sure,” Derek answered. “I’d be happy to help. So do you want me to ring her now?”

“That’d be great thanks,” I thanked him. “Can you get her in there working from about 9 AM till about 4:30 PM or something?”

“I’ll do what I can,” Derek replied. “Do you want me to ring you when she leaves?”

“You are the best!” I thanked Derek, hanging up. I gave Adam thumbs up as he looked at me confused. The phone rang. “I’ll get her,” I grinned into the mouth piece. Derek was grinning too. “TARA PHONE!” I hollored.

“I’VE GOT IT!” she yelled back. I hung up my end.

“You ring Warren, tell him to bring the church group over here tomorrow and we’ll plan the party,” I told Adam.

“This is going to be funky,” Adam grinned.

16th January 2003, 07:59 PM
Skip forward to the night of the party.
Date: 22nd December
Time: 4:45 PM

The party was organized. Adam had talked to Gabbi and she had invited Amy, Steve, Pokemaster Jay, Ryan, and a few other friends. But right now the only sound in the quiet house was the shower running as Tara washed her hair. She was getting it straightened for tonight, thinking that only the Dragon Tamers party was on.

Tara got out the shower, got dressed and ran out the house, her hair still wet. They were going to blowdry it straight at the hair dressers. After she left, I sat up on my bed. I had been lying down, pretending to sleep. Adam was out skating, and the pokemon were all asleep in separate pokeballs so that they would have energy for tonight.

The Dragon Tamers Christmas Party would end about ten thirty to eleven o clock at night. Adam was going to leave early to come back home and set up the party, and then after the party I would distract Tara from going home. Maybe take her out for a quick snack or something.

Tara got back half an our later, looking really great. “Wow I’ve never seen your hair that straight!” Adam exclaimed.

“I know, isn’t it great?” Tara cried. She was really happy with her hair.

“It looks so different,” I commented.

“It looks really good,” Adam corrected.

“Thanks, it does doesn’t it?” Tara tossed her hair with her hand, really excited. “Now I have to get ready so we can be there at six. You guys, take a shower, get changed or something.” Tara could be really bossy when she wanted to be.

We took showers. Then we hung around waiting for Tara to finish getting ready. We woke up the pokemon, except for Nimmy, who we left sleeping in her pokeball. Tara was still getting ready. We then decided to get a drink, and finally Tara emerged from the bathroom, fully ready.

She looked pretty nice. She was wearing really baggy jeans and usual joggers. Around her waist was a Juice Ematic red belt, and she wore a red and black top that had no sleeves. I think she was wearing some make up, maybe some of that eyelash stuff, or maybe some of that eye shadow. But she looked better like this.

“I’m finally ready!” she announced. “Let’s go!” She ran outside, and we followed. “So are we walking, catching a bus or riding Pyro?” she asked.

“I can give you a lift,” Pyro shrugged. “Just don’t expect me to carry all the pokemon.”

“Why don’t us pokemon go with Pyro, and you guys can go into pokeballs!” Fury suggested, not so brightly.

“Fury you’re a ning nong!” Nails accused.

“Come on guys, its just for about ten minutes,” Tara told them, recalling them. She then pulled a hair tie out of her pocket and tied her hair back. “Now let’s go.”

It was a smart idea of her to do that. The ride was windy but we got there fairly quickly. Tara undid her hair and pulled out a miniture fold away brush to give her hair a quick brush, then turned to my hair and brushed it. Adam got away before she could do his.

We entered the hall together and looked around. It was fantastic, there were tables with our names marked on them, and we weren’t sitting with Warren and the others from their church. I suppose that was a good thing, because then Tara wouldn’t see them leave early.

People began to arrive, and around about six fifteen, Gabbi stood up on the stage and tapped the mic. “Hello?” she spoke into it. “Hey everybody, just letting people know that the party will now begin! And here are our guest band, Unwritten Law! They will be here until nine thirty so enjoy them while they’re here. And not only do we have Unwritten Law but Darude is coming in later to mix us up some cool tunes! Have fun!”

“I love Unwriten Law!” Tara exclaimed. “This is the best night of my entire night!”

“Hey everybody,” Scott waved into the mic, grabbing it punk rock style. “Now if this isn’t your type of music then here, we’ll play some Kasey Chambers for you.” The band began to play Kasey Chambers, am I not pretty enough, and then the classic punk style hit. A punk version of the song, extremley heavy and funky.

“Wow this is so cool!” Tara sighed. Unwritten Law were one of her favourite bands. She was in heaven on earth. Once they finished their punk Kasey Chambers, they began to play one of Tara’s favourites, Evolution. Tara almost had a heart attack.

After about an hour food was served and they took a break from their music to come and sit down. Tara kept on looking over at them nervously. “Should I go over and talk to them?” she asked.

“Just go,” Adam told her. Tara shrugged and walked over to them.

“Excuse me, but do you mind if I get an autograph or something,” She asked nervously

“Look at them talking, she’s really happy,” I commented.

“Yeah,” Adma nodded. “Wanna invite them?”

“She’d die,” I answered. “Yes.”

“And if they cant come we’ll invite Darude,” Adam told me. I agreed.

Something moved from Tara’s jacket pocket which hung on the back of the chair. The chair wobbled, as out of her pocket pokeballs spilled out. In flashes, Fury, Nails, Shinoda, Shadow and Nimmy appeared and took their seats around the table.

“I’m STARVED!” Fury announced. “Where’s Tara?”

“Over there with Unwritten Law,” Adam answered.

“Oh wow! Unwritten Law are here!” Fury squealed, dashing over to be with Tara and her favourite band.

“Typical,” Shinoda grinned, shaking his head.

“Aren’t you and her fighting anymore?” Shadow asked.

“Well… yeah…” Shinoda answered, then changed the subject. “I hate pokeball’s they’re so cramped.”

“Yeah I know,” Bam added. Adam grinned as he released Bam and Rodney into the action. “I swear my wool isn’t the same.”

“It looks the same,” Shadow commented.

“It’s all about the feel,” Bam replied. “You have to have it feeling right otherwise there’s no point in actually having it.”

“Nimmy, where are you going?” Nails asked.

“Nimmy stay here please,” Shinoda told her.

“Nimmy go play with baby pokemon,” Nimmy answered.

“I’ll go with her to make sure she’s okay,” Nails told Shinoda.

“Thanks for that,” Shinoda replied. “It’s really nice of Nails to take care of Nimmy like he does.”

“Yeah, saves you from doing the work,” Bam teased.

“Well that too…” Shinoda grinned.

Dinner came and went as the party continued. There was a large snack table over to one side where some people who couldn’t get enough food ate. Others just stood around talking, while a few danced to the wicked beats of Darude as Unwritten Law continued to take a rest and talk with Tara and Fury.

How could you talk to her that long?

Even though I did spend the whole night talking to her once, these are famous people we’re talking about here.

“Hey!” Tara greeted, slapping me on the back. “Unwritten Law are a great band! But I’m going to go battle, you wanna come?”

“I was just going to go with Adam, you don’t mind do you?” I told her.

“Nah its fine,” Tara shrugged.

<--- Tara’s POV --->

Todd could go see Adam. I mean its not like I really wanted him to come. Seriously I didn’t care. Fury was somewhere around here, but I really wanted Nimmy to have her first battle today or something. Nimmy and Fury needed to battle today, because they were the weakest of the team.

“Shinoda, where is Nimmy?” I asked.

“Nails took her to play with the other baby pokemon at the nursury,” Shinoda answered. “Why?”

“Do you think she’s ready for her first battle?” I questioned Shinoda.

He stared at me. “Are you serious?” he demanded. I shrugged. “We could give it a go but if she’s in trouble then kind of don’t expect me to stay out.”

“Right, that’s understood,” I agreed. “Let’s go get her and Fury.”

We left Bam, Rodney and Shadow talking and sort of dancing in a weird pokemon way to go find Nails, Nimmy and Fury, who had ran off somewhere. People were crowded in all sorts of places. As we passed the toilets, a whole bunch of girls with belts as skirts and very short tops burst out, giggling, their hair perfectly straight.

Girly girls. Eugh.

“There’s Nails and Nimmy!” Shinoda cried, running over to the Totodile and the small bundle of fluff beside him. “Nimmy, do you want to battle?”

“Battle?” Nimmy repeated, looking at Shinoda with big brown eyes.

“Fight a pokemon,” Shinoda answered.

“Fight a pokemon?” Nimmy asked. “But… that’s mean…”

“But if you get stronger it means that you wont be picked on and you’ll be able to save yourself if you get picked on by mean pokemon,” Shinoda told her. “Remember that Oddish?”

Nimmy’s bottom lip quivered as she remembered the awful experience.


Nimmy’s POV

The creature smiled, and I began to get frightened. “Why run away?” the creature asked. Daddy once told me never to talk to strangers, so I bit my lip and backed off slowly. “Oddish don’t bite you know.” The Oddish kept on walking towards me and I turned, about to run when I stopped.

I couldn’t run, it was as if my feet were frozen. All of a sudden, I was out of breath and felt like I couldn’t move at all. My chest hurt, my back hurt, my ears hurt, my whole body hurt. It felt as if blood was being drained, as if I was in that game Fury was playing on TV and I had lost a life.

I couldn’t handle the pain, and once I was able to move again, I screamed and collapsed.


Nimmy nodded. “I’m going to win!” she announced.

“Nails can you find Fury for me please?” I asked Nails.

“Sure,” he shrugged, and went off looking for her. We continued over to the battling area.

“Amy are you seriously still working?” I asked Amy as she stood organizing papers and battles.

“Yeah but its only for about another half hour. Then I switch shifts with somebody else, I think Conner,” Amy answered.

“That’s good, at least you don’t miss out on the party that much,” I told her. “Anyway I’m going to need to battle a low level pokemon against my Nimmy. She’s only level five and a baby so no level fifty pokemon.”

“I wouldn’t be allowed to anyway,” Amy answered. “Rules state that pokemon under 10 levels have to battle against pokemon their level. Nimmy is on level 5, she’ll be battling with a… an Aipom, level 6.”

“Nimmy are you ready?” Shinoda asked.

“What’s going on?” Fury asked, appearing suddenly.

“What are you doing here?” I demanded.

“You wanted me, duh,” she answered, as Nails showed up.

“Nimmy is going to battle,” I told them.

“Nimmy win!” Nimmy growled, walking into the arena.

<--- Nimmy Lvl 5 VS Aipom Lvl 6 --->

Nimmy watched curiously, her first time in a battle. I realized we should’ve trained her with the few attacks she knew, tackle, tail whip and mud slap. She wouldn’t be able to use any of those I didn’t think. But the most we could do was pray that she would know what to do.

The arena had a thin layer of sand to protect the floor but it wasn’t much good. It just made attacks like sand attack and mud slap easier to use. At the other end Amy released the Aipom, the purple monkey landing neatly on the sand and bouncing on its tail, which seemed to have another hand on the end.

“Hi I’m Nimmy,” Nimmy went to greet it.

“Hi,” Aipom replied. “I don’t want to be mean, you look like such a nice pokemon, and seeing you’re only a baby, I don’t want to hurt you but I have a battle to win.”

Nimmy was offended. “I’m not a baby!” she cried back. She was young but she’d grown out of the baby stage into a youngster. About 5 or 6 in human years. “Now I’m going to loose you for being mean!”

Aipom tried not to snicker. Nimmy was angry but she didn’t know what to do, so she stood there, making growling noises at the purple monkey. “Nimmy, run at the pokemon and bump into him really hard!” Shinoda yelled from the side.

Nimmy ran at the Aipom and tried to bump into him but the Aipom simply sprang to one side using his tail and laughed. Nimmy slid on the sand and fell down onto her chin. She got up and sniffed, trying to be tough was hard for her. She turned around and as her father called out to do it again she began to walk over to Aipom.

“Aipom,” Nimmy began. Aipom turned his attention to the little Eevee but she had began to run, and this time did bump really hard into his stomach, knocking the wind out of the monkey. “I just hit you!” Nimmy finished happily.

“Quick Nimmy!” Shinoda yelled. “Wet the sand and kick it onto him!”

How do I wet the sand? Nimmy wondered. She figured that maybe going to the toilet there was the right answer and squatted.

“Um…” Shinoda closed his eyes not able to watch. “I didn’t mean that way.”

Nimmy kicked the wet patch and muddy sand flew over through the air into Aipom’s eyes and mouth, as he gasped for air. He spat out the wet sand in disgust. “You are so going down!” he yelled, getting up and stomping over towards her. He lifted his hand and revealed a set of semi sharp claws.

Nimmy whimpered. “Nimmy! Run for it!” Shinoda called. Nimmy bolted straight ahead, trying to escape the scratch attack. Dashing through the legs, Nimmy knocked Aipom off his feet and he fell with a thud on his tail. Nimmy turned around, and realizing what she had done, she looked proud.

Aipom was still blinking, trying to get all the sand out of his eyes, when Nimmy ran up to him and began to whip him with her tail. Aipom tried to bat it away but couldn’t really see where he was scratching and ended up getting a slight graze on his own tail.

Nimmy poked her tongue out at him, and took a step back, and ran into him while he held his tail. Aipom looked up just as she was about to attack, and he extended his claws, letting her run past them as she hit him, slicing her face open slightly.

Aipom rolled back a bit but couldn’t really be bothered to get up and decided to let Nimmy win. He was pretty tired, she was good for a baby according to him. Aipom called it quits. Nimmy on the other hand had began to cry a bit because her face was bleeding.

“Nimmy has defeated Aipom!” Amy announced, recalling the monkey.

<--- Nimmy grew to Lvl 6! --->

Nimmy continued to cry as her face stung from the scratches made by the monkey’s claws. Shinoda ran out to her and spoke to her softly. “Hey calm down, it’s going to be all right,” he told her. “Tara’s going to use some potion on you and then they’ll all be better.”

“It will hurt right?” Nimmy asked. Her vocabulary got better every time she talked. She was aging quickly; soon she’d be a rebelling teenage pokemon.

“Just stay still for a moment,” I told her, spraying the potion in her face. She squealed as the tiny droplets of the spray sank into the cuts. She cried out then bit down hard in pain. On my hand.

“Ouch!” I cried, pulling my hand away as quickly as I could.

Nimmy realized what she had done. “Sorry,” she apologized.

I held my hand, trying to ignore the pain. “It’s okay,” I replied, wincing inside. It hurt like hell. “Don’t worry about it.”

Amy ran over to me when she saw my hand bleeding. “Here come with me,” she told me, and lead me to first aid, my little gang of pokemon following. She sprayed my hand with some Dettol stuff that cleaned and disinfected my hand, then wrapped it in a bandage.

“Thanks for that,” I told Amy. She grinned. “Oh and Fury needs to battle too. She’s a bit on the not battled for a long time side.”

“That’s a nice way of putting it,” Fury commented.

“Fury’s at what level?” Amy asked, leading us back to the main room.

“Level eleven,” I answered.

“Level ELEVEN!” Fury cried from behind me. I rolled my eyes.

“Do you want her to battle a two level pokemon or a one level pokemon?” Amy asked.

“Bless you?” I responded.

“Two level pokemon are much harder, in Fury’s case, about ten levels above her or more,” Amy explained. “But by battling them she gets two levels of experience, going up to level thirteen. If she battles a level one pokemon, levels are much closer and there is more chance of winning but she will only grow to level 12.”

“Right,” I nodded.

“Level… one…” Fury answered, sighing. “I hate to admit it but if I went against a level two pokemon I’d get my butt kicked.”

“Right, then Fury, level eleven Vulpix, is going to be matched against free battling level sixteen Marill,” Amy announded. “We seem to be getting busier, I’ll just have to release the pokemon then try to find Conner so he can give me a hand.”

“That’s all good,” I shrugged.

<--- Fury Lvl 11 VS Marill Lvl 16 --->

<--- Fury’s POV --->

A Marill, round and blue with a large white bell, walked into battle. “I’ll see you a bit later,” Amy said. “I’ve got to find Conner.”

“Darn it,” I grumbled, entering the very small battle field to oppose Marill. “Why does it have to be a strong WATER pokemon? Why not, a level 2 Butterfree?”

Without warning, my face was sprayed with high-pressured icy cold water, and I felt myself sliding back from the blast. My cheek began to hurt as the water penetrated through my fur rather quickly, and I tried to get away from it but it was one of those things where it held you there as it pushed. I figured it wouldn’t last for that long seeing Marill had to take some air soon.

I prepared myself for the second Marill would take air, that’s when I’d strike.

And it happened. The rapid water river stopped for a split second as Marill breathed in and went to fire another one. I leaped out the way and then dashed around in circles, things becoming a blur around me. Marill was confused and in trying to hit my just fired off rapid random water shots.

I tried to stop as a water shot flew right in front of me, and leaping backwards I managed to jump sideways and crash into the water mouse. We tumbled over, rolling around. Marill suddenly rolled itself into a ball and I fell off it as it rolled over to the side. Uncurling, Marill grinned, and rolled into a ball, this time rolling straight at me.

I sidestepped quickly, watching as Marill rolled past, around in a circle and straight at me again. Jumping, I landed on top of the rolling Marill ball by mistake, and stayed on top, running to stay from falling.

“Go Aunty Fury!” Nimmy cheered.

“You know if I was her I’d run the other way,” Nails was telling Shinoda. “Because in running the other way it actually stops the rollout, making it easier for her to attack him.”

“I see what you mean,” Shinoda nodded.

I grinned at this little bit of advice and instantly ran backwards. The rolling stopped, and I half fell to the ground. It wasn’t a full fall because I landed safely, and didn’t get hurt. Marill lay on the ground, dazed for a moment, and it would’ve been stupid for me to give up this opportunity.

Three golden stars flew through the air, each one striking Marill’s white belly and knocked him down again by the force that they went in. When Marill got up a second time, I wasn’t there, and he looked around confused. Appearing behind him, I jumped and got him by his head onto the ground. I don’t care if it was cheating, it was called ‘letting the disadvantaged win.’

Marill spun around and sprayed my face with a refreshing yet annoying blast of freezing water. That guy must be like an eski, keeps things cold because that water was freezing. He jumped at me after I wiped the water out of my eyes and I fell down with him on top of me.

What was the bet this looked REALLY dirty.

I figured that this was a really stupid thing to do but for the heck of it I gave him a little tornado of flames. He didn’t put it out either, he just let it go around him once he jumped off me and then let it burn out.

I eyed him. He was planning something mean. I knew it. He had the same look I usually have.

Water splashed over me as he used water gun on the floor. The water rippled towards me and on making contact with my sensitive paws scalded me. The fire had heated up his insides and boiled the water. I was so damn stupid!

I couldn’t get around it by a quick attack, it was spreading too fast. Swift would attack him but I couldn’t physically attack him and what I needed to do was to knock him into the water, hopefully scalding him a bit. And I had the perfect strategy, not meaning to brag but nothing could make it go wrong.

Unless Marill evolved.

But he wouldn’t do that, they’re somehow equipped with ever stones or something.

Stars flew swiftly across the river of water I was now backing away from. As they flew, I vanished from sight. Marill was smacked by those stars (excuse the very bad details. I mean, what else am I supposed to say it as? I mean I could say that those stars hit him but that would’ve been very bad. Anyway from my point of view they smacked into him.) As Marill fell backwards, I appeared and leapt right into him, knocking him forward with force. He fell forward and slid a bit, but didn’t quite make it onto the water. Running at him I thudded into him once more, giving him a push into the water.

And remembered that Marills can make the fur on their skin dry and not let water in at all.

At least the Marill was weakened now, but the aquatic pokemon was still fighting strong. He ran at me, a bit ticked off and shoulder first ran into me, as I tried to keep my stance and not fly back. Stars flew out as a swift attack and into the back of the Marill, catching him off guard, and I tackled him instead. Marill went back this time, but curled itself up in a defensive ball.

Rolling forward, Marill knocked my paws out from under me as I fell to the ground and felt hot water soak into my fur. I gave a sharp yelp, jumping out of the hot water instantly. Shaking it off best I could, I looked up to see Marill once again rolling towards me.

I had a feeling that in about five minutes if that dude was still rolling it’d be over.

I ran to the side and let him roll around and come back at me, making me dodge once again. I was getting puffed quickly as Marill came back for a third time. The thing that held me on was the fact that Marill would have to catch its breath sometime.

But certainly not before a fourth time. Or a fifth time, when he got me and struck me down once more. By now I was really tired, and as I looked up wearily I saw Marill had uncurled and was panting. I got to my paws, but Marill didn’t pay attention to me. He was too busy trying to regain the lost breath.

Stars shot at him for all they were worth. They wouldn’t do much, we were so tired from the intense battle, but I hoped that they would hurt him somehow. He was hurting me after all. I had bruises all over my body and I was sore and stiff and my belly and parts of my fur were dripping wet with either hot or cold water.

Marill’s body shook with the abosbing of the stars. They contained part of the last energy I held. The other part was going into the main finale. Marill looked up to see me standing there, grinning a tired and ending grin. The type of grin a hero gives to his enemy before he dies or something when he says something like “My foe, you win,” or something else heroic.

Marill opened its mouth and a small yet powerful bullet of water shot out, and went straight through the air as I materialized into nothing but tiny invisible particles. Marill turned around quickly, expecting me to appear from behind him, but once again I was smarter than him.

Fire pokemon are so much smarter than water pokemon.

The particals rejoined in mid air as I came back to view, and I landed leaping onto the water mouse. He fell forward, and we slid along the water, this time only a tail hair getting wet. I sat up on him, and tried to ride him like a skate board. This made the battling fun.

“Watch out Fury!” Nails yelled from the side. I stopped having fantasies about being the first pokemon skater and looked right in front of me to where a pole stood in the way. I jumped off and ran on my tip toes out of the water, which was now still a very warm temperature. Metal clanged as Marill hit the pole.

“I rule!” I cheered, and paraded away. Turning around right before I walked out of the small ring, I gave Marill one more swift. It might have been mean but he was about to get up and that really knocked him out for good.

<--- Fury grew to Level 12! --->

“Good work Fury!” Nails congratulated, grinning, each one of his pearly white sharp teeth flashing. They were intimidating if you couldn’t see his overly kind nature. For probably the first time I actually noticed them, and they scared me a little bit. But knowing Nails, I figured he wouldn’t attack me unless like, I turned really evil or something so I wasn’t really worried.

“Yeah good job concidering that you were fighting an experienced water pokemon,” Shinoda shrugged.

“Thanks,” I replied.

As Tara and Amy talked for a bit, Conner showed up and Amy walked off to the food table. Tara turned and spotted Gabbi. “Hey Gabbi!” she greeted, walking over to her. “How are you?”

“I’m good thanks, you?” Gabbi answered.

“I’m great,” Tara replied. “Really excited seeing that tomorrow is my birthday.”

Gabbi smiled and it looked from here that she was trying not to give anything away about Tara’s birthday. Of course we had to invite some of Tara’s Dragon Tamer friends, Ryan, Gabbi and Amy were coming and I think a few others. I wasn’t too sure how many people were coming, but I know that it was going to be one late night.

“Thanks for the whole idea to do a Christmas party,” Gabbi told Tara, who shrugged in response and said something that sounded like ‘no biggie’. “We couldn’t have done it without some of your organizing.”

“Yeah but it never occoured to me that some people were Jewish and didn’t actually celebrate Christmas,” Tara replied. “I figured – HOLIDAY! I mean all my friends celebrate Christmas, I have Muslim friends, Hindu friends but not really any Jewish friends so I kinda… forgot.”

“Yeah that’s okay,” Gabbi shrugged. “People forget these things.”

“Yeah,” Tara agreed. “Hey, I heard Bec was around here too, she left already?”

“I think so,” Gabbi replied.

“I guess she doesn’t care much about Christmas either,” Tara assumed.

“Well she’s Jewish too,” Gabbi answered. “It would’ve been nice if she had’ve stayed longer. It would’ve been nice to have some Jewish company.”

“Sorry again, it’s like me to get confused then forget things that happened like two seconds ago,” Tara grinned.


“Fury,” Adam spoke to me quietly. I strained my ears trying to catch the soft words that floated into the air. “I need you to give Amy a message. Tell Amy to get Tara to help out there to give us some time to plan our getaway and get her surprise party set up.”

“Can’t you do it yourself?” I sighed.

Adam shot me a killer look. “Fury just go!” he told me.

I rolled my eyes and hopped down from the chair, trying to find my way back over to the battling area. Amy had returned, and she was looking stressed a tiny bit as she tried to get people battling as quick as possible. Even with Conner’s help she was still stressed.

“Yo Amy!” I called, running up to her. She released the Marril again and turned to me. She obviously was overwhelmed by the amount of people wanting to battle.

“Yeah?” she asked hurridly, walking over to the desk and showing some people over to another battle field where Conner was working.

“Look, if you need help ask Tara,” I told her quickly, following her in a hurried walk. “Adam needs her out the way so they can do a bit of last minute organizing. And then they’re going to set up the party. But she can’t get suspicious. So what I need you to do is to get Tara helping you here and then Adam will have a bit of time.”

“Right,” Amy nodded. “You go tell her that I need a hand urgently and I’d like a hand from her.”

“Thanks so much Amy!” I grinned, running off.

“Fury where you going?” Bam called as I ran past him. He turned back to Rodney and Shadow. “Oh well big deal.”

“Tara!” I yelled, running up to her, sliding and crashing into her shin. It was also for attention.

“What now?” she sighed.

“Amy is like over loaded. Even with Conner working there they need some help,” I told her. “Can you give her a hand?”

“Sure,” Tara nodded. “Sorry Gabbi, we’ll talk later okay?”

Gabbi grinned, trying not to give away the party. “Yeah,” she replied. “Have fun working.” Tara walked off in a sort of running walk. “That was rigged wasn’t it?” Gabbi asked me.

“Partly,” I answered. “Amy does need some help.”

<--- Tara’s POV --->

I worked for about an hour and a half solid. The crowd died down and Amy got to eat some dinner that the caterers saved for her. She came back and stood talking to me while I released pokemon, monitored battles and recalled and regenerated worn pokemon.

“So are you finding this fun?” Amy asked me, chewing at a piece of chicken, grinning while she watched me work.

“Not really but I don’t mind it,” I answered. “I mean since when was work fun?”

“Dragon Tamers work is fun,” Amy shrugged.

“Well it would be,” I replied. “Working with Gabbi and Conner and the other workers.”

“Most of them don’t even show up,” Amy complained. “When was the last time we saw Charlie? Or Alex? Or Scott?”

“I know, I feel sorry for you.”

“It’s not so bad, split between me and Gabbi and Conner its not that much work.”

“Cool,” I nodded. “Well I like my stamps coming in from the battles etc so I probably wouldn’t work there unless it was a temporary position or something. I’m actually going for a job. Competing against Adam and Todd for a job at the surfie shop around the road from where we live.”

“Is it hard to get a job there?” Amy asked.

“Jolteon is the winner!” I announced, recalling Marril and putting him in the regeneration machine. “I don’t really know,” I answered Amy while I set up another battle. “Geesh, a lot of people are leaving. They’ve put on the preset playlist now, it must be getting near to closing time.”

“Yeah the party ends around about eleven,” Amy told me. “So people are gonna start leaving now and stuff.”

“That means I can take a break,” I sighed. “I’m hungry. I never got any pavlova too!”

“You stay here for a bit and I’ll go get you a slice of pavlova from the kitchen then I’ll close the battling area,” Amy smiled at me. “You look like you’re about to hug me.”

“I would but I have to send a Blastoise into battle,” I grinned. “Thank you soooo much!”

“No problem,” Amy dissapeared.


Amy approached Adam and Todd. “Has Tara’s other friends left?” she asked them.

“Yeah, the only people still here who are coming are me, you, him and Gabbi and Ryan and a few other workers and the pokemon,” Adam replied. “I think I’ll go home now.”

“How are you going to leave unnoticed? You’re her best friend,” Amy inquired.

“Sick leave?” Adam shrugged.


“Here’s your pavlova, you can take a break now,” Amy told me, handing over a plate of gorgeous creamy pavlova and a silver fork.

“Thanks heaps Amy!” I thanked her. “So are you going to close the battling?”

“Yeah, you go ahead and hang out with your friends,” Amy shooed me away. I grinned as I walked over to our table where Adam sat, looking pained.

I put the plate down straight away, and it sat on the table with a clank. “Adam are you okay?” I asked him, very worried.

“I’m right,” Adam replied. “Just got a stomach cramp.”

“Adam you look awful!” Gabbi exclaimed, coming over. “Is everything okay?”

“Just got a stomach cramp,” Adam replied, in a pained voice. “No big deal.”

“I heard that stomach cramps are pretty bad and that you should lie down otherwise…” Todd began.

“Otherwise what?” I demanded.

“Otherwise you sort of get all bubbly gas and wind,” Todd shrugged. “Its like not good to do anything or stuff.”

“Darn no sex,” Adam joked through his pain.

“Do you want to go home straight away?” Gabbi asked. “I was going, I can give you a ride.”

“Thanks, I think I better,” Adam nodded.

“Can I come too?” Fury asked. “And if I come can Shionoda, Nails, Shadow and Bam and Rodney come too! And also Nimmy cuz then she’ll feel left out.”

“Why don’t I just take all of you guys home?” Gabbi offered to Fury and Nails who had shown up beside Fury.

“Thanks Gabbi! You’re my favourite!” Fury cried. Then remembering I was there, she added hurridly “Aside from Tara of course. Unless you buy me mango ice cream, then you’ll be my favourite.”

“Go find the others and then we’ll go,” Gabbi told Fury, grinning. She turned her attention back to Adam. “Come on Adam.”

Todd and I helped Adam out of his seat and from there, he staggered over to Gabbi and leant on her as she assisted him outside. Fury and Bam appeared from the middle of the crowd, rolling together, followed by Shinoda. Nails and Nimmy walked together, Nails trying to keep Nimmy awake. As for Shadow and Rodney, those two hung way back talking privatley to one another.

“Is Adam going to be all right?” I asked Todd.

“Yeah, it’s only a stomach cramp,” Todd answered. “No big deal.”

“You reckon he’s constipated?” I asked.



We fell silent just listening to the commotion around us. I reached across the table and picked up my dropped pavlova, and began to eat it. Todd looked around, then at my pavlova then around again. “It’s empty now,” he commented.

“You’re right,” Amy agreed, appearing. “I think you two should go now, its late and besides, I don’t think you want to help clean up this mess.”

“Damn straight,” I replied, smiling. “Don’t you employ people?”

“We do normally but the caterers are just friends of friends and basically they’ve voulenteered to clean if some of the workers stay. Seeing that Gabbi is going on holidays soon she had to leave early to pack and stuff, so that leaves me, Conner and our pokemon.” Amy looked around. “And with my bunch it shouldn’t take too long.”

“Are you sure you don’t want a hand?” I asked.

“Its okay, you two should just head home now,” Amy reassured us. “Besides its your birthday tomorrow, you don’t want to be tired then.”

“You remembered?” I gasped, happy that somebody remembered.

“Of course! You don’t think I’d forget your birthday do you?” Amy asked.

“No but,” I shrugged.

“Anyway we’ll take the hint and leave,” Todd input. “Come on, let’s go.”

“See you Amy!” I waved as I left with Todd.

“Bye!” she waved back, picking up my pavlova plate and a few glasses that we used for drinks.

“Gee, I feel a bit guilty leaving her to clean up,” I told Todd as we walked into the night. Even though it was summer, it was surprisingly chilly.

“Let’s just walk around for a bit,” Todd suggested. “I don’t really want to go home right now.”

The night was clear but chilly. As we walked down the street, the long way home, the moonlight shone a blue light over everything. The trees looked magic, the road wasn’t black but a light grey blue, and the grass, houses and shops all cast eerie shadows that looked really cool.

“It’s so quiet,” I spoke, my voice softer than normal. It seemed like the silence shouldn’t be broken by a loud tone.

“Yeah, it’s really cool,” Todd agreed.

“Yeah,” I nodded. “Speaking of cool, it’s cold.”

“Do you want my jacket?” Todd offered.

“No thanks I’m not that cold, its just that the complaning is fun,” I replied.

“So…” We were lost for conversation. The walk was a slow one, and right now I just wanted to say ‘Guess what, I like you.’ But if I said that then he’d either get struck by lightning and die, or turn gay. Adam pointed out that with the other guys I’ve dated (all except for him) they’ve all turned gay.

They havent except that most of them are now total hardasses and bastards.

“So you’re single arent you?” Todd began, asking a simple question to start a conversation.

“Yeah, for now,” I shrugged. “Being single is so much fun, you can check out anybody you want!”

“Yeah I know,” Todd began. “That’s good.”

“What that you can check out anybody?” I asked.

“No that you’re single,” Todd replied.

I stared at him, mixed up inside. I didn’t know whether to feel scared, happy or confused. I went with confused, it was always good to have things explained. “What?” I blinked. “What do you mean?”

“I mean it’s good that you’re single,” Todd answered.

“Why?” I asked, suspiciously.

“Because… it is,” Todd told me, a bit nervous now.

“What are you trying to tell me?” I demanded.

“Cant you sort of tell?” Todd asked.

“No,” I replied, hippy valley style. “Like, you expect me to know?”

“Fine I like you,” Todd told me. “Now you know.”

I froze. I just stared at him. Silent. Well the silence didn’t last long for me. Once it regestered in my brain what he said my motor mouth instantly revved up and started working again. “Woah this is like so cool! I wasn’t expecting that at all! That is so cool!” I cried. “I like you too that is so cool.”

“Cool,” Todd grinned. He glanced at his watch. “I think we should walk home now.”

“Okay, it is getting late,” I agreed. But this time when I walked, my feet didn’t touch the ground.


Todd fumbled with his keys, and finally let us in the door. I looked around, not able to see anything. Why was the house so dark? From the kitchen the clock gave the first solid stroke of twelve. “Well I’m fourteen now,” I commented, softly.

“Happy birthday,” Todd told me, flipping the light.

“Happy Birthday!” a sea of voices cried. I blinked and took a step back. In my lounge room, right across the back wall, what looked like a sheet had the words “Happy Birthday Tara!” in bright painted letters. A table had been set up in the middle of the room and streamers and balloons were scattered around everywhere. The angel on the top of the Christmas Tree even had a balloon.

The table had a large cake on it, a large pavlova cake with one of those plastic things that say “happy birthday” stuck in it. Around it were 14 candles all lit now. And on the floor in front of the table sat my grinning team of winners. Shinoda, Nails, Fury and Shadow all sat there, smiling, showing off their teeth. Nimmy must have been asleep.

To the side sat Bam and Rodney and the smaller pokemon that everybody else owned. Everybody else included Amy, Gabbi, Ryan, Conner and a few others from the Dragon Tamers. My friends from my church were there too! I couldn’t believe Warren and Ashley and Evan and Alana and Caitlen and Badger and others were there. I thought they were still back home.

But right behind the birthday cake grinned the one person who made all the difference. Without him it would’ve been a waste. Adam stood there, smiling, his skin lit up by the candle flames. “Happy Birthday Tara,” he told me, walking around the table and giving me the best hug we’d ever had in ages.

I didn’t even care that it was like hugging a skeleton. He was my best friend and that night he became my best friend in the whole world. Who would go to all this trouble for an annoying chatterbox who is still lovable?

Man I loved Adam so much. (As a friend!)

This was one party I would never forget. And Adam was one best friend who I would never ever forget.

Last Exile
16th January 2003, 09:11 PM
Yowzers, sensational return Tara! The Pokemon fighting over the music was classic! :D Geez, if you can muster that up I'd better get to it then!

PS. Notice something different about my sig? i.e. The third song? I bet you never thought I'd like them! :D You win, Tara! :yes:

17th January 2003, 12:30 AM
Thanks Ryan! I've actually been writing that a week before the scenario was posted and it was actually going to be a lot longer than tha but I decided that that was a good mushy ending and to leave it there. ^_^


Lady Vulpix
18th January 2003, 04:37 PM
Hello, everyone! I'm still in Salta, so I have no Internet connection for now (I managed to get on a computer today, but it's a rare event that probably won't be repeated until I return).
I just wanted to tell you all that I'm having a great time! I'll tell you more about it when I get back.
Ryan, I read chapter 21 of WDC and it was amazing! I especially loved the introduction. I read it to my cousin Helena and she loved it too. And Crystal is really intriguing!
Tara, welcome back! I don't have the time to read your story now, but according to Ryan's comment I'm sure I'll love it when I get to read it. :) One thing, though; I did notice a line that said "Lady Gabbi Vulpix". I wonder what it stands for... Well, I guess I'll find out later. As long as yoiu didn't have me write invitations or anything like that, everything will be fine. I mentioned you in my story too. You can read it on page 4.
Ok, this is all for now. Take care and have fun! I'll be thinking of you all.

20th January 2003, 03:35 AM
Thanks Ryan!

And as for the sig - your a bit late. Linkin Park are getting old because they havent' had a song out for ages! :P But its still nice to see that you thought of me when you put that in there ;) Serioulsy try listening to Papa Roach or Superheist. They're such cool bands. :D


20th January 2003, 08:13 AM
Tara, sorry for taking so long, I've been busy. Anyways, here are 20 stamps for your nice battles. I was laughing out loud at a few parts, esp. during the music war.

20th January 2003, 08:28 AM
Thanks Amy! I was actually thinking about the stamps earlier. I was thinking "How can I get the stamps without acting like a pushy newbie?" and then I was planning this whole sceme to leave tehm until like two months later and then go "gee i just remembered" ^_^ im so stupid! XD

Thanks! And I'm glad you liked it. Basically thats how me and my sister used to fight. Me with my stereo going "BOOOM BOOM BOOM" and hers going "I'm a teenybopper with blonde hair yeah yeah yeah."



21st January 2003, 12:29 AM
(Sweetie’s POV)

I walked alongside Dad, purring happily, as we headed back to Amy’s house after a brief visit to the Eevee House. We had simply stopped by to check on things. Once there, Nala had released us, so we could enjoy ourselves for a little while. I smiled, remembering the series of events. Not long after we had arrived, Steve showed up. He hugged Nala before releasing his team. Amy smiled pleased to see him. The two of them walked over to the couch where Steve smiled and handed her something. “Merry Christmas hun,” he whispered to her as she opened the present. She gasped, pulling out the white juice. I was excited. I quietly, and casually made my way over to be closer to where they were sitting. I wanted a closer look at the white juice. “Are you sure about this?” she asked him. He smiled, as he told her that he was. He also said that he wanted her to have it. She asked him one last time, and when she received the same answer, she looked over at me. Smiling, she spoke. “I think Sweetie would like to have that. If you’re absolutely certain, why don’t you give it to her.” My jaw almost hit the floor as I walked over to Steve. He held the container so that I could drink the liquid.

I was jolted out of my thoughts by Dad. He had playfully tackled me. I smiled before also playfully shoving him off of me. Then I walked over to him, and nuzzled Dad, purring happily. He nuzzled me back before he smiled with a faraway look in his eyes. I knew he must have been thinking about my mom. Suddenly, I got the feeling that someone was about to jump on me, so I stepped to the left. Sure enough, Salem crashed to the ground where I had been seconds earlier. I chuckled to myself as he muttered, “Crud.” I jumped on him before he could recover, and the two of us began wrestling. We continued until Nala broke in saying, “All right you two, we’re here.” Pinning Salem, I stuck my tongue out at him before trotting inside the open door. I immediately ran upstairs to the bathroom and jumped up on the cabinet. I was extremely careful that I didn’t knock anything breakable off. Then I looked in the mirror and smiled before jumping down and going to see if there was anything I could do to help Amy with.

(Aiyana’s POV)

It had been a few weeks since Nala invited me to join her team, and I felt at home. I thought back to when I got separated from my pack. At first, I thought it was the worst thing in the world that could have happened to me. Looking back, I realize that it was the best thing. I never really did fit in well with the pack. As my brother once told me, “You are too nice for your own good.” All of my brothers and sisters were far too rough for my liking. I shuddered, remembering the snow that I had been buried in when Nala happened to stumble across me.

I glanced around at my teammates as we walked back to Amy’s house. Blazer sort of reminded me of the pack leader. In a lot of ways they were similar to each other, but there were differences as well. They were both natural born leaders, had a sense of wisdom beyond their years, and they were both strong. However, Blazer was friendly and you could approach him anytime, whereas you had to walk on eggshells around the pack leader.

Kiara was someone who I could go to if I had any problems as well as just a simple chat. I didn’t know the others that well, but they all seemed nice. The only one that was in my level range, however, was Jasmine, but she liked playing in the water. Which was something that I didn’t particularly enjoy. I was jarred out of my thoughts by Nala announcing that we were home. I smiled, and followed Sweetie and the others inside.

(Sugar’s POV)

I looked down at the charm on my paw and sighed. It had been ages since I had last seen Jesse or Torrey and I missed them terribly. To make things worse, I was getting bored. I wasn’t much in the mood for practical jokes. I had to do something soon, or I’d drive myself nuts. It was a while before I managed to find Nala by herself. Although it was hard, I stayed quiet until she noticed me before I spoke. I explained to her that I was bored, and she nodded in an understanding way. “Maybe we can arrange something at the battle tower. Would you like that?”I smiled. “Sounds like a good plan.” Amy was looking through her mail as we talked. ”In the meantime, how does a Christmas party sound?” “As long as no one hurts Ayla, it sounds good.” At last year’s party a high level raticate had attacked Ayla when she was just a helpless baby. I snarled at the memory. I taught that raticate a lesson. ”Sounds fair enough,” Nala replied. With that, I left the room, smiling.

(Nala’s POV)

Te weeks flew by, and soon it was the day of the party. I tucked a piece of holly behind Sweetie’s ear, before I went upstairs and got ready. I decided to leave my hair down. It was actually behaving tonight. Instead of being frizzy, it was barely wavy. As I got dressed, I hummed nervously. I wasn’t even sure why. “Everything will be fine,” I heard Kiara say. Finally, I was ready. I sorta hoped that Steve would be there, but with everything that was going on, I would understand it if he wasn’t.

Once we had reached the Recreation center, I saw a few familiar faces, but not many. Jasmine was curled around my neck. She and Aiyana were a bit nervous since neither had seen such a big crowd before, so they stayed close to me. The rest of my team fanned out to see if they could spot some of their friends. Blazer winked at me, and said, “If I see Steve, I’ll bring him to you.” Then he trotted off, chuckling, leaving me with my face turning red.

(Salem’s POV)

I was waking around enjoying the decorations, hoping to run into someone I knew. Well, I literally ran into someone, but it wasn’t anyone that I knew. “Oof! Sorry,” I apologized. I looked up to see that it was an ampharos that I had collided into. “It’s ok,” she replied. “I should have been paying more attention to what I was doing that to the decorations around me. My name’s Flashy.” “Same here. My name is Salem.” I replied, and we shared a good laugh. We talked for a few minutes, before Flashy asked me if I wanted to battle. “Sure,” I agreed. Once we found an isolated area where we could battle without disturbing anyone, it began.

Salem L.36 Espeon VS. Flashy L.40 Ampharos

While I was trying to figure out what move would be my best to start out with, Flashy had made up her mind. She hit me with her fist crackling with energy. Since I wasn’t expecting it, I went down. Immediately, I climbed back up onto my paws. I would have to think on my toes. Flashy tried to hit me again, but I ran between her legs, and smacked her in the back with a glowing white tail. “You’re not bad,” she told me. “Neither are you,” I replied. The ball on her tail began to glow, and then, there was a blinding white flash of light. “Sorry,” Flashy said, ”but I needed to in order to be on equal footing. You’re an espeon after all.” I felt my face getting warm. Not being as observant as I should have was really coming back to haunt me big time. This was embarrassing. I silently thanked Sugar and Sweetie for the little help that they did give me. I couldn’t see anything but white spots. Suddenly, a huge weight slammed down on top of me, pinning me. The breath was knocked out of me and, soon as I was able to, I gasped for air. Flashy still had me pinned, but once I was able to think straight, I began to conjure up a vile, toxic sludge which I spit all over Flashy. She immediately jumped off of me, and I could hear her moving about. Still blinded, I tried to be more observant, but I was having trouble. Maybe I should have worked on developing that sense like Sweetie had, but now was not the time to dwell on past mistakes. I heard footsteps approaching, and I leaped to the side. I felt a rush of air as I heard a loud thud. I ran to the source of the sound, and swung my tail, which was glowing white at Flashy. I felt it make contact, and I smiled. I heard the sound of electricity crackling, so I tried to make a run for it, but I wasn’t fast enough. I yelped as the electricity coursed through my body. I turned around and rced to where the ampharos had been seconds earlier. However, instead of hitting her body, I slammed into the wall. This isn’t working, I thought as I realized that I had been using my hearing to pinpoint Flashy. I listened carefully, but she wasn’t making a sound. You could hear a pin drop. I shook myself as if I was trying to shake water from my coat. Two heat-seeking star shaped missiles flew out, and headed straight for Flashy wherever she was. I soon heard an ”Oomph!” I raced towards the source of the sound and slammed into Flashy using my quick attack. I smiled as I hit, and bounced off of Flashy. I started to run towards her once more, when suddenly vines sprouted from the ground and wrapped themselves tightly around my legs, thuse efficiently stopping me dead in my tracks. I groaned, before beginning to channel my psychic powers into a beam. I listened carefully, calculating where Flashy would be in the next few seconds. Then I released it. A loud thud told me, that the attack had hit. Still listening closely, there was silence. I had to assume that Flashy had fainted.

I win!
I grew to L.38!

I soon realized what a predicament I was in. I was still trapped in the vines that Flashy’s hidden power had caused, and I still could not see. Flashy had fainted, and I didn’t hear anyone nearby either. I had an idea, but it was a long shot. I used my psychic powers to send a plea to my teammates. I hoped that one of them would somehow hear and come to my aid. Within minutes, I heard a wonderful sound. “Salem, what on earth went on here?” It was Talut. I smiled. “Well, I sorta ran into this ampharos. After we started talking, we agreed to a friendly battle. It resulted in not only me winning, but also me being blinded by a flash, and trapped by her hidden power. “Oy,”he said as I felt him poking about in the vines trying to extricate me from them. By the time that Talut hah managed to free me, Flashy began to stir. As soon as she was able to, Flashy spoke. “That was a great battle.” I smiled. “Thanks. You battled extremely well, as well. I think I know now how you got your name,” I joked. Flashy chuckled. “Sorry about that,” she apologized. “Don’t worry about it,” I told her. “Once I get healed, I should see just fine.” As it was, I could see slightly better than I could a few minutes earlier, but for the most part I still couldn’t see a thing. Talut picked me up in his arms. “Would you like us to get you healed as well? Our trainer is currently busy organizing the battles.” This was news to me. ”She is?” I asked stupidly. “Yes,”Talut answered. Flashy smiled.”No thanks. My trainer was planning on stopping by the Pokecenter after the party anyway.” With that, I heard her walk off. “You know, Salem,it seems you have a knack for getting into predicaments.”Talut chuckled. “very funny,” I responded. Talut flapped his wings and took to the air. Then he flew me over to where Amy was working.

(Nala’s POV)

I watched as most of my guys and gals fanned out, before I headed off to the battle arena where I ws supposed to be working. As I neared, I knew I was going to be in for a busy night. If I had the time, however, I had a little surprise for Aiyana. I glanced down at the little houndour. She was smiling, but staying close to me.

Soon, I was so busy, I didn’t even have time to think. The battling arena was quite popular. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw Talut up in the air. He winked at me before flying off. A familiar voice, quickly reminded me of what I was supposed to be doing. “Amy, are you seriously still working?” Tara asked. I smiled. “Yeah, but its only for about another half hour. Then I get a short break.” As we talked, I learned that Nimmy was going to have her very first battle. I checked her level and then pulled out the appropriate pokeball releasing an energetic aipom. Then I watched the battle unfold. Minutes later, it was over. I smiled, as I recalled the aipom. Nimmy had won. She only received a couple of scratched. “Ouch!” I heard Tara shout. I looked over, and saw that her hand was bleeding. After cleaning the wound, we returned to the battling arena, where it was now Fury’s turn to battle. Fury also won, and finally it was time for my break. Don’t get me wrong I was enjoying myself. I was just ready for a little free time.

The food smelled good, so I went to get myself a bite to eat. Soon, it was time for me to get back to work. It didn’t look like it would be slowing down for a while either. “Nala,”I heard Talut call to me. I looked up to see him flying towards me, carrying a weakened Salem. “What happened?” “Salem and an ampharos had a battle. He won, but he was temporarily blinded by a flash.” “I see.” I returned Salem to his pokeball, and walked over to the machine that regenerated pokemon. I put Salem’s pokeball inside. Minutes later, I released him. “Be careful,” I called after him. “I will,” he promised. With that, he and Talut, one more disappeared.

”Yo Amy!” I heard someone call. I looked around. “Down here.”Looking down, I saw Fury. “Yeah,” I answered as I hurried back. She was trying to keep up with me. “Look, if you need help, ask Tara. Adam needs her out of the way so they can do a bit of last minute organizing.” I nodded, smiling. “Right.” Fury shouted her thanks as she ran off. “You’re welcome,” I called after her.

Tara arrived shortly after Fury had run off. “Fury said you needed help.” She said. I smiled, “Yeah, things have really picked up.” I quickly showed her what to do, and pretty soon, she had the hang of it. For over an hour, the battling arena was fairly busy. Once things started to slow down, I realized that I might actually have time for a battle. I looked down at Aiyana. “Yana,” I said, and the houndour raised her head. “Would you like a shot at battling?” Aiyana gulped, but nodded yes.

(Jasmine’s POV)

Amy had told us that there was gonna be a lotta people at the party. Neither me or Yana had any clue about what to expect. I stayed curled around Amy’s neck. I felt safe there, plus I had a nice view of what was going on around me.

When we had arrived, I looked around from the safety of Amy’s neck for either Dad or Kidda. When I didn’t see wither of them, I watched the battles that was going on. Battling looked like fun, but I could tell that Amy thought I was still too young. As the night progressed, I found it harder to keep my eyes open. Eventually, I fell asleep. I had a short nap, but I woke up when Amy softly called to Aiyana. When she asked if Yana wanted to battle, I yawned and opened my eyes. Amy’s friend released an aipom and Yana nervously walked forward.

(Aiyana’s POV)

Aiyana L.6 Houndour VS. L.6 Aipom

I glanced over at Nala before I walked into the arena. I gulped nervously. The aipom offered his paw to shake, which I gladly did. Facing off, I looked over at Nala. I knew that she was used to her pokemon battling independently, but I wasn’t exactly thrilled or comfortable with that option right now. Amy seemed to understand my look, and I smiled relieved when she nodded. “Yana, try starting off with a mud slap.” I nodded, spitting on the sand that covered the floor. I then kicked it onto the aipom, but not before he raked me across my rear with his unsheathed claws. I spun around facing the aipom. I was thinking about using ember, when I heard Nala say “Ember.” Grinning, I took in a deep breath of air before I spit out several tiny fireballs. The aipom, who had just finished wiping the sand out of his eyes, ran straight at me. Before I could dodge, he slammed into me, I quickly took in a deep breath of air, and once more expelled several tiny fireballs onto the purple monkey, who fell with a thud. I looked over at Nala. She had a huge smile on her face, which caused me to have a matching smile on my muzzle. I could tell that she was proud of me. Jasmine was also smiling. “Aiyana is the winner,” I heard Tara announce.

I won!
I grew to L.7!
I learned Roar!

(Nala’s POV)

When Aiyana looked at me as she entered the arena, I figured that she wanted guidance. So, I started out giving her help, but then, toward the end, she made a move on her own. I knew that it would take time, but eventually, she would be confident to battle on her own without any help from me. Yana had a huge smile on her face, as she left the battling arena. Once her battle was over, it was back to work. Soon, though, things were winding down. A lot of people had left, and Tara took a well-deserved break. As I was closing down the battling arena, I looked down at Aiyana. “Yana, could you go and round up the others?” She nodded, climbing to her paws. Jasmine was asleep again. Talut and Blazer were the first to arrive, and one by one the others arrived shortly after. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw Tara and her friend leave. With everyone helping out, we had the place clean in no time at all. I recalled everyone except Talut. I climbed up on Talut’s back and soon we were off. Once we were at Tara’s house, the lights were off, but the door opened and I was motioned to come inside. I quickly recalled Talut, and released Aiyana and Sweetie as I walked inside. Everything was ready, all that was needed was the birthday girl. Everything went quite, and we could hear the door opening. As soon as the light came on, everyone Shouted Happy Birthday Tara!”

21st January 2003, 06:21 AM
Wow that was cool Amy! I really liked the end it was so simple. Mainly because it involved me but then :D Seriously the flash bit was really good. I thought flash woudl just light up the area not blind a pokemon. I really liked the way you described and showed it to us. Also Salem is cool he's probably got to be my favourite of your pokemon.

I really liekd it.


21st January 2003, 08:27 AM
Thanks Mist.

I'll try to post the new scenario later today when i get a chance. It'll probably be this afternoon, due to the fact i have classes today.

21st January 2003, 03:14 PM
Those who asked for a time extension get it.

Ryan gets 30 stamps for writing this scenario!


An ice cold chill that freezes every part of you races along like an impatient child. Blood rushes through you veins like a stampeding horde in order to keep yourself alive. Trees of all sizes are smothered in the white frosty snow that continues to gently fall from the sky. Ice has formed in several places and all waterways are frozen through.

Winter is here. The contrast to summer. It is a time for cold, for snow and for the other side of the world to enjoy summer. But don't despair! For it is time for:

The Winter Games!


1. Ice Skating Races

Fun but very competitive and can get quite brutal. Speed is essential but brains and brawn will help too. Have a plan in mind and know when to strike. The race is 10 laps of a 100m oval ring, making it a 1000m race. You can race opponents of different levels to test your skills. Remember, speed can also equate to losing control as not many Pokemon have superior grip on ice. Choose wisely.

Beginners: Level 10 Swinub
Normal: Level 20 Smoochum
Moderate: Level 30 Delibird
Advanced: Level 40 Sneasel
Expert: Level 50 Lapras

2. Ice Hockey!

Assemble a team of three Pokemon to take on those available. You can only have one of a particular type on each team. Attacks are allowed but you'd better not go overboard and take your opponent out of the game or penalty goals are enforced plus stuns from the hidden electric guns to bad players. First to five goals wins the match. Speed and strength will win you the game. With only 3 players, you'd better be on the money.

Beginners: Smoochum, Swinub, Squirtle, all Level 10
Normal: Totodile, Seadra, Poliwag, all Level 20
Moderate: Poliwhirl, Wartortle, Croconaw, all Level 30
Advanced: Lapras, Vaporeon, Poliwrath, all Level 40
Expert: Blastoise, Sneasel, Feraligatr, all Level 50

3. The Course!

A kilometre of snow and cold water, five targets, 500 metres of ice and one battle. Go for the gold!

Beginner: Level 10 Squirtle
Normal: Level 20 Seaking
Moderate: Level 30 Quagsire
Advanced: Level 40 Tentacruel
Expert: Level 50 Kingdra

You may participate in each event once only. No Pokemon can be in more than two events. Each participant gets one level of experience for each event. The ones you compete against depend on your level.

Below or 10: 10
11-20: 20
21-30: 30
31-40: 40
41+: 50

Stronger, Faster, Higher, Better!

All participants get awards! Go for glory!

Lady Vulpix
22nd January 2003, 01:51 PM
Amy, for your great story and the excellent job you have been doing all this time, I'll give you any item you want from the Reward Center. Thanks a lot for everything!!

Tara, I've began to read your story, but I haven't finished it yet. Anyway, it looks like you didn't read mine, so we're even. :P Actually, what I've read so far was very good and for the comments I've seen the rest must have been excellent, but we have a loop here: how come you and I invited each other to the party?

The following information is for those who are interested in knowing what did since I last posted here.

I didn't do much on Sunday because I ate way too much ice-cream (and they didn't even have mango), so I had to stay in bed for the rest of the day; but I made up for that on Monday: I climbed the San Bernardo hill with Helena (my cousin) and had a picnic on the top with cheese sandwiches we'd made earlier in the morning, we stayed up there for a while and then we went down in different ways and ended up many streets away from each other. I was a bit worried, but I had the feeling that we'd find each other. We both started walking on different streets, took some turns and ended up meeting at a crossing! When we told each other the paths we had walked, we burst into laughter: it was nearly impossible to meet like that!
Then we walked a lot more until we reached a video club, where we stayed for a while because of the air conditioning and the fact that Helena couldn't make up her mind. She ended up renting 3 videos, and she was thinking of a fourth one, but I reminded her it wouldn't be the last day of her life, so she could rent it some other time.
After that we walked back to my grandma's house, picked up the letters I'd written during the weekend and went straight to the post office. We had to go to two, because the first one was too expensive. Then we went to a computers institute where one of the workers had offered us to watch a movie for free and saw Shrek. I had already seen it, but Helena hadn't. The problem was that there were no subtitles and Helena doesn't speak English well, so I had to translate the whole movie for her. That was exhausting and I ended up with a splitting headache that didn't go away until sunrise, but fortunately I felt well the following day.

On Tuesday I sent more letters, played with my grandma's maid's 2-year-old son and prepared myself for the flight back to Buenos Aires. Apart from the things I'd brought with me and those I'd bought there, I packed a box of tamales and humitas (traditional food from the North of Argentina). I had participated in cooking those humitas, and my mum tried them as soon as I got back and she liked them a lot. :-)

The journey back was nice, though it was delayed a little because of the weather. It was a bit impressive when the plane flew right through a storm; then when we were above it and I could see a carpet of clouds and lightnings below and the clean sky full of stars above... it was beautiful!

If you want to know what I did before that, PM me or e-mail me. It's long and I don't think the Battle Range is the best place for that.

In any case, I'm here to stay. :)

22nd January 2003, 04:17 PM
Originally posted by Lady Vulpix
Amy, for your great story and the excellent job you have been doing all this time, I'll give you any item you want from the Reward Center. Thanks a lot for everything!!

Wow. It was no problem, glad i could help. I think i'll take a simple sunny day tm. thanks.

Lady Vulpix
22nd January 2003, 04:52 PM
Ok, the TM is yours, then. Enjoy it. :)
And I'll also give you a Beach Ball because you deserve it.

Last Exile
22nd January 2003, 11:10 PM
Ah, my scenario is up! I'd better respond to this and the Christmas party pretty soon!

23rd January 2003, 04:07 AM
Gabbi wrote a story? ^_^;;; Now I feel guilty! Oh well people alwasy have loops in stories. Its not as if they actually talk to each toher and go "and in my story you have a bowl of punch so if your story says that you have a bowl of chinesse noodles then im gonna kick you." ^_^ we're much too nice. Oh well no matter. :P I'll have to get around to reading Gabbis story ^_^

Also Ryan your scenario sounds funky. Just one problem. In my scenario I described that it was summer. Am I going to have to travel or something? Awww. ^_^ I'll probably just say that they're holding the winter games and we flew over wheter it matches up wit ur stories or not :P Just dont worry about mine matching yours. They never will.



Lady Vulpix
23rd January 2003, 08:10 AM
Tara, I didn't want to say this, but you and I did have an AIM talk in which I told you you were going to invite me, remember? Anyway, it's ok.
It's good to see that TPM is working better now.
As for the season... for a long time no one had decided what hemisphere Ulthuan was in, but by the end of 2001 someone beat us by saying it was winter in December, so that's how it stayed.

I've written a short interlude that will go before my story for the current scenario. I'll post it now. Ryan, you're in it, so you can include our encounter in your story.

ø¤º°`°º¤ø,¸¸,ø¤º°`°º¤ø,¸¸, ø¤º°`°º¤ø ,¸¸,ø¤º°`°º¤ø,¸¸,ø¤º°`°º¤ø

<Lagi's POV>

The last days of December were hectic for Gabi. So much that she couldn’t be more grateful to have Amy’s valuable help, and even Tara’s (it seemed Ryan was right about her). Gabi had to finish two reports, had an exam, and to make things worse she got a letter of complaint and had to go and sort things out personally. I went with her, to make sure she didn't blow up. So did Tsunami, who was losing hope of being in the Dragon Games finals and was doing his best effort to keep his uneasiness to himself (which didn't work) and not to take it out on his friends (in that, he succeeded for the most part). So we could say I was travelling with two time bombs. I knew a tough job when I saw it.
It all began when the mailman rang the bell of DT central and requested the presence of one of the people in charge. Gabi went down and I went with her in my pokeball (I sometimes get in there when Gabi's working; for me, it's a good way of getting to know those around her without becoming the center of attention). The man told Gabi that he had a certified letter for the Dragon Tamers, and he needed her to sign a receipt. He said the letter came from Eataine.
"Let me guess: Selenia," Gabi shot out, tired.
"No, actually it's from Tor Syle," the mailman said.
Gabi was astonished to hear this. She received letters from Selenia about every week, most of them requesting items for the Pokemon Center and a few with news about the development of the city, and some info sheets had come from Lothern a few times, but no letters from Tor Syle had ever arrived. She felt a bit guilty too, and I thought I knew why, but I wasn't sure until she signed, watched the mailman go and then read the content of the letter I got out of my pokeball to take a look by myself.
The style of the letter was formal, but it had been clearly written by a very angry person. The author had found out about the assistance the Dragon Tamers had been offering Selenia for the past year and demanded a similar - or better - treatment for Tor Syle. It said something about Tor Syle being the most ignored city in Eataine and in the whole of Ulthuan, even when it was the one city that suffered the most from the attacks of Team Rocket, and complained heavily about the Dragon Tamers not offering their help when the city needed it the most. On the same tone was mixed a complaint about Tor Syle not being mentioned in an official brochure about Eataine which had been issued during the training stage of the Dragon Games. The brochure said that Lothern -one of the 3 official training sites- was the only important city in Eataine, reducing other cities like Tor Syle to the rank of fishermen villages.

"I can't believe he's giving the same importance to Team Rocket and a lousy brochure!," Gabi exclaimed after reading the letter. "That brochure came out wrong and it had already been published when I got to see it. Didn't he realize that Selenia was treated as a fishermen village too?"
"I know," I told her. "But it's him who needs an answer. And it's not the brochure you're so mad about, is it?"
"You're right, as usual. You know what's eating at me, don't you?"
"Only because your emotions matched mine when we read this. You feel guilty because we couldn't help Tor Syle when they were in trouble... when the half of our forces were attending a call from Selenia and the other half were defending Caledor from an invasion and you were working with both, and the section of Team Rocket that had settled in Tor Syle was too strong for us to confront it before regrouping."
"You make it sound like we had no choice, but how can you explain that to the people of Tor Syle, who suffered so much because we couldn't help them?"
"Scott got us the permission to operate all over Ulthuan and we've achieved so many things that sometimes we forget we're not Ulthuan's main line of defense. We're only pokemon and young trainers with little or no formation where it comes to war... except for Scott and a few others, that is. We can't do everything and we can't help everyone. It hurts, but it's the truth and we must learn to deal with it. Those who blind themselves to their own limitations are the first ones to fall."
"That's the least comforting piece of advice you've ever given me, Lagi."
"You can get really rude when you're mad, did you know that?," I pointed out. She stopped to reflect on her last words and felt guilty again. "No, I didn't want you to feel like that," I told her. "I just wanted you to understand I'm fallible too."
"We all are," Gabi sighed. "And yes, I know I'm rude when I get mad. I'm working to change that, so any help will be appreciated... Now that I think of it, we did defeat Team Rocket's heavy hitters and made the rest of the organisation spread away, which in the end led to them leaving Tor Syle, so I guess we did help after all."
"You can say that to this person," I suggested. "That will make you both feel better."
"That's right. But a letter won't be enough. I'll go and talk to him personally, and I'll offer them assistance if they need it. Though I'm sure it will be hard to deal with someone who's so furious."
"I'll watch your back," I offered.
And that was how we ended up travelling to Tor Syle.
There was tension. A lot. But not all of the people in Tor Syle were that furious. Some of them were understanding and even supportive; especially those who worked at the Pokemon Center (except the head of it, who turned out to be the 'concerned citizen' who had written the letter). They understood that the Dragon Tamers were mainly pokemon trainers, and no soldiers and recognized all the efforts the whole group had put in the fight against Team Rocket, so in the end things didn't turn out so bad. Gabi arranged the delivery of a set of TMs, shields and juices for the local PokeMart, and reminded everyone that if they ever asked for our help, we'd do everything that was at our reach to help them. Most of the people we found turned out to be friendly in the end, once more contradicting the brochure about Lothern.

Then, before we could think about it, New Year was here. We hadn't had time to make many arrangements, so we settled for a small party at home, crowned by Ventura's wonderful light show. We had some music, and Gabi sang too. And every now and then Water Angel sang along. I didn't sing because I was too busy enjoying the sweet melody of their hearts. Then we all went out and spread all over Sector Alpha visiting our friends and, in some cases, our children. I flew under the moon for a while, delighted at the embrace of the sky, and then went back to Gabi's side, just in time for her to tell me she had a feeling she was about to find Ryan. She was getting so much better with her premonitions since she decided to be at peace with them! We came across Ryan on the street. I let him and Gabi talk while I spent my time with my first daughter and her teammates, great friends I hadn't been able to be with much since they returned from the Emerald Dream.
Being in the company of the Happiness Team was a breath of fresh air. A wonderful start for the newborn year. The rest of the team had a great time too. Most of them ended up in the Eevee House and found many friends who had had the same idea. Hero decided to just walk around and see what he could find, and he ended up being spotted by the ultimate finder. He refused to tell me what happened then, but he was in a really good mood when he returned. Tsunami told me he'd taken a dip at the Eevee House pool, but then left Pidgeot and Water Angel alone and played a little with Caledor and other pokemon. The emotion that underlined the word 'played' let me guess that it would have been interesting to watch that game. Ventura and Iael had a late training session, where she helped him get a grip on his Psychic attack. When morning came, they were still up and Ventura was practically swallowing the sun. Two more friends who had had an exciting night.
After that, Gabi wrote a lot of letters: some to her friends abroad, one to Amy thanking them for all the effort she had been putting on keeping the Dragon Tamers going, and the longest ones directed to her relatives in Argentina.
"I hope they're fine," she sighed as she wrote the addresses on the envelope, while a little piece of her that was usually hidden came to the surface, seeking peace.
"They will heal," I assured, "just like you're healing yourself now by writing to them."
"I'm afraid I may not like the answers to these letters," she confessed.
"Oh, yes, you will," I said. "Because, while they may hold bad news, they will also express how happy they are to hear from you and to know you're fine, and they'll tell you how proud of you they are, just like you tell us every time. And believe me, those expressions of love can bring you back to life."
"Especially for someone who feels it on both your side and the other," she remarked.
"You have a little of that too," I pointed out. "You're not an empath, but you have compassion, and the result is often quite similar."
The hug she then gave me was priceless.

Last Exile
25th January 2003, 05:32 AM
With all the posts I know have an idea of what to do. Intriguing start, Gabi. Allows me to run off that.

Well, I know have a good reason to get writing again. Because last night, I finally managed to get all 180 emblems on Sonic Adventure 2! :D Ever since I saw that Roddick - El Aynaoui match in the Aussie Open tennis where Roddick won 21-19 in the 5th set, I've been feeling quite psyched and pulling off some crazy stuff. That and I've had to take care of mum since she came home on Wednesday. She had a historectomy on the Friday before. :( But she's recovering well. In two weeks she should be more active but she'll need another month on top of that to recover. At least she's getting paid leave. Tomorrow is Triple J's Hottest 100, so expect me to be plonked next to the radio for 8 hours straight to see what us Aussies liked musically in 2002. On the 31st I'll be at the Big Day out. 11 bands in 11 hours. On the 16th of February I'll be seeing Pearl Jam. And on the 28th of January I'll be enrolling for my teaching course. Life is busy but alright since Australia won the One Day cricket series 15 mintues ago. Hopefully they can win the cricket World Cup which starts February 9.

In between all that I need to get something for here and something for my fics. Just posted something for When Destinies Collide so I'd better get to it for This Fic.

Lady Vulpix
25th January 2003, 10:16 AM
Wow, you have lots of plans, Ryan! Good luck with everything. I'm looking forward to finding out how you're going to run off my story. :D
Best wishes to your mom. I hope she gets well soon.

By the way, I've started working hard on my thesis because, all of a sudden, I have a deadline (either I finish it by the middle of this year or they get someone else to do it). I hope I get to finish it in time without getting as crazy as las year.

26th January 2003, 07:09 AM
Wow you got a lot on your plate! ^_^ Hope everything goes well for you and dont get killed moshpitting please! Make sure you go see QOTSA for me becuase I've just started liking some of their stuff. I like the bass, its simple and funky. Also go see 28 Days and other punk bands! Do you know what punk bands are going to be there?


Last Exile
27th January 2003, 12:45 AM
Well, here's who I'm seeing:

11:30 - Waikiki (acoustic/harmony rock)
12:20 - 28 Days (hip hop/punk)
1:10 - Frenzal Rhomb (punk)
2:00 - Pacifier (heavy rock)
3:00 - The Waifs (acoustic balladiers)
4:20 - The Vines (crazy rock)
5:15 - The Living End (punk)
6:15 - Queens Of The Stone Age (heavy rock)
7:15 - PJ Harvey (melody/rock/punk)
8:15 - Jane's Addiction (rock legends)
9:15 - Foo Fighters (rock)

Enough rock/punk for you?! :D

Expect my ears to be continually ringing for at least a day after! And Tara, moshpits are safe. There's a lot of comradery between the music fans. The places where there are hooligans are mainly Syndey and Melbourne. That's why the East Coast legs of The Big Day Out had safety measures put in for this year.

PS. Queens Of The Stone Age swear that they have bootleg tapes that suggest Limp Bizkit were to blame for the death of Jessica Michalik. i.e. They did NOTHING to stop the carnage that was happening once it started! No wonder LB didn't want to testify to the coroner or that they left the country straight away or that they've made no music since because their guitarist quit the band. Hopefully Fred Durst never makes another song again and has a 'limp bizkit' for life! :D To think the BDO organisers were the ones the coroner blamed. Ick! :mad:

Well at least you've seen the light on Queens Of The Stone Age. I give you a lot of praise for that.

PS. Did you catch the Hottest 100? They actually got the No. 1 song for 2002 with No One Knows. They had 4 others ones in there too. Silverchair, The Vines, the Foo Fighters, Grinspoon, Eminem, Coldplay and The Waifs all dominated the list as well.

Here's the link for the whole list for interested parties:


And yes, Gabi, the song in 8th place IS about what it suggests! :D *wonders if you fainted at the thought*

Think I'll start a topic on Misc to see what people think of the list

Anways, I'm writing again, so expect new material from me soon!

Bye to all you beautiful people! And good luck with thesis writing Gabi. Start now. That's my only piece of advice.

Lady Vulpix
27th January 2003, 07:03 AM
I'd take your advice, Ryan, but I can't. I've started a long time ago. ;)
By the way, I didn't faint. I'm not that fragile. But I did think that the media can make anything pass for art these days.

Knight of Time
28th January 2003, 01:05 PM
My trip to the Porygon Valley, Part II

[My POV]

It was a good day for me as usual. After defeating Leo earlier, I decided to stick around for a while longer, and I backtracked to the spot where I had originally battled Leo and Flasher, his lone Porygon2. Knowing that they were long gone by now, I sighed. Starting to figure where Leo could be, I waited for several minutes, until I heard a scream that sounded very familiar. Knowing that I would have a lot of difficulty trying to figure out who screamed, I decided to go back to where I had entered the valley. Even though I could still hear the screams once in a while, they were not as loud here.

Realizing that someone out there was in major trouble, I knew that I might only be able to help the person if I temporarily left the Porygon Valley, and I walked back to the portal that got me here, and went through it, when I suddenly was sent backwards.

Slowly getting up, I rubbed the wounds I had received from trying to go back the way I had came. Figuring that I was trapped here, I knew that Leo would never try to do this to me, as he was a trustful friend, and I soon could hear the screams getting weaker and weaker from my position, until they suddenly stopped.

Figuring it would be very hard to determine who the screams had come from now that they had stopped, I had an idea, and I decided to take out Sniper, my L9 male Crobat, and I asked him if he could search in the air for the person who was screaming.

[Sniper's POV]

Upon hearing Kyle's important request, I nodded. Knowing that I couldn't just refuse to look for this screaming person by air, I flew several metres above Kyle, and flew for a while until I soon began to pant. Beginning to get tired, I was not so confident I would be able to find this person that was in trouble, and I began to slowly float to the ground, until I could see an unconscious boy not too far off, and I called for Kyle to come up ahead of me to see what was wrong.

[My POV]

Upon hearing Sniper's request, I knew that I couldn't refuse, and I followed him until I came up to the unconscious boy. Realizing that this was none other than Leo after several minutes, I helped him get back to his senses thanks to my emergency kit in my backpack, and I asked him what was going on, and he soon explained in deep sighs that he and Flasher were beaten by a bad looking trainer who had a Porygon2 that was trained better than Flasher. Realizing that the guy must have beaten up Leo after defeating Flasher, I helped Leo back up to his feet within several minutes thanks to some pain killers, and promised him that I would stop this person who attacked him.

Helping Leo back to his house which was a short trip from my location, we said our final goodbyes, and I set out to look for Leo's attacker, until I was suddenly interrupted by Leo.

"I hate to say this Kyle, but this guy is one of the most powerful trainers in the whole of Porygon Valley. In order to beat him, you have to have one of your Pokemon trick the guy's Porygon2 into converting into a type in which you can take advantage of by using its weakness against. I know you can do it."

Upon hearing what Leo had to say, I saw him suddenly collapse. Figuring he was too weak to move very far, I asked Sniper if he could airlift Leo back home, and he nodded.

[Sniper's POV]

Upon hearing Kyle's new request, I knew that refusing it could be very bad for Leo, and I watched as Kyle helped Leo onto my back, as I soon lifted into the air. Finding Leo's home about a mile away, I helped him get in, and just as I was thanked by Leo's parents, I flew back to where Kyle was, and I told Kyle that I was feeling a bit tired, and wanted to go back into my Pokeball.

[My POV]

Returning the tired Sniper to his Pokeball as he had requested, I soon set out to track down the stranger. Figuring that there were no footprints here, I waited and waited, until I could hear noises behind me. Turning around, I could see a trainer a bit taller and more muscular than Leo, and I asked him his name.

'So, you must be the one who is friends with Leo I see. I beat his Porygon2 with so much ease, and I am going to beat one of your Pokemon with ease as well! And if you must know, my name is Michael. Take out a Pokemon, and we will battle.'

Knowing I couldn't refuse Michael's offer, I was not ready to end up like Leo, and I took out a Pokeball. Enlarging it, I opened it up to reveal my female Cleffa, Star.

'A Cleffa? Hah. If you think she can help you win, she better be ready, because my Porygon2 will trash your Cleffa, just like it trashed Leo's Porygon2. I call my Porygon2 Blade, which yoy may refer to as a 'he'."

Upon seeing Michael withdraw his own Porygon2, I figured that this would be tougher to beat than I thought, and I took my position opposite Michael, ready to battle.

Star the female Cleffa (L7) vs Blade the Porygon2 (L10)

[My POV]

Upon being forced to fight Michael's Porygon2, Blade, I felt a bit nervous. Knowing that Leo's Porygon2 was tough to beat, and finding out how easily Blade defeated Flasher, I shuddered for a few seconds before turning to Michael, asking him who was going to attack first.

"Since you are a friend of Leo's, you attack first. But beware, I'll be glad to beat you."

Upon agreeing to attack first, I turned to Star.

"okay Star, it might have been a bit tough for Buzz to win against a Porygon2 like Flasher last time, but this is now. I want you to immediately begin with Amnesia."

Upon giving my first attack command to Star, I could notice a few question marks over her head. Knowing she could not lose her memory, I watched as they faded away, as if her special defense had rose a lot.

"Man, you may have made a good move, but that will not protect you against this. Blade, get her with your Toxic!"

Soon, I could see a highly poisonous venom come out of Blade's 'mouth'. Upon seeing it splatter all over Star, I shuddered again. Knowing that she would only have a limited time to take down Blade, I had enough.

"Okay Star, Blade may have been lucky to poison you, but we can still trick him, so begin with your Pound attack!"

Upon seeing Star move towards Blade, she began to pound on him with her back legs. Unfortunately, I realized this wouldn't last very long, as I waited for Michael's next attack command.

"Okay Blade, even though our opponent may be getting a little overconfident, I want you to use Conversion2 immediately."

Upon seeing Blade begin to glow, I scratched my head, not having a clue what type Blade would become, until I could see his body partially transparent, as if he had converted to the ghost type.

"Hey Michael, you may think that having Blade convery to the ghost type was a good idea, but you will see what happens while he is in this state. Star, show him the Hidden Power I gave you, of Darkness!'

Upon seeing Star send out several small balls of dark energy arranged in a medium sized circle, I warned Michael that I was here to win, not lose as I saw the dark energy swirl around Blade's body, hurting him.

"Humph, you might have gotten lucky, but the poison will eventually finish Star off. You can't win. Now, Blade, use your Psychic to ick up Star, and smash her as hard as you can!"

Upon seeing Star being telekinetically picked up and dropped pretty hard, I was far from ready to give up, as I gave Star her next command.

"Okay Star, even though you might faint within one of your next turns, we can still show Michael and Blade who is better off at winning this contest. Now, unleash another Hidden Power Dark at him!"

Upon seeing the second set of dark balls of energy swirl around and crash into Blade's ghostly body, I could see that he was getting weaker, and quite tired.

"You might have the upper hand, but I am going to make sure you end up like Leo. Blade, finish her off with another Psychic!"

As soon as I saw Star lifted off the ground again, I slowly shook my head back and forth. Knowing that this could be the end of Star after seeing her getting dropped hard again, I was feeling more power coming through my body, and I gave Star what might be her last command for the battle.

"Okay Star, it may look like you are very close to fainting, but I know that this can be won. Now, finish off Blade with one last Hidden Power: Dark!"

Upon seeing the circle of dark energy balls swirl around Blade a third time, I watched patiently, hoping he would faint, when I heard some beeping sounds coming from him, as if they were telling me and Michael that he was defeated.

"Arrgh, you beat me. Hmmph, I was strong, but you are way stronger than me. I'm outta here!"

Upon seeing Michael leave, I sighed. Hoping he would be the only human enemy I would face in my entire life, I congratulated Star on a job well done, returning her to her Pokeball just as she was about to faint, and I immediately headed back to the portal that brought me to this great place, succesfuly going through it back into my own world, with Porygon Valley only a memory now...

Star grew to L9 and learned Sing!

Well, I guess this marks the end of my first (but hopefully not only) scenario.

Lady Vulpix, thank you so much for posting it. I really enjoyed making it for you guys.

Last Exile
28th January 2003, 08:50 PM
Aw, Gabi, c'mon! You can't slag Machine Gun Fellatio! Those guys and girls are great! They're awesome live! :D They're a bit naughty but not that extreme. They just like to give a bit of cheek. Anyways, commercial radio won't go near them. Only Triple J plays them. MGF have artistic freedom. Besides, I don't see what's wrong with calling a song 'P***ytown'.

EDIT: Forgot to say. I'm now enroled in my teaching course and I also found out yesterday my application for work on AFL/SANFL game days was successful. I'm finally going to be working for money! :D

AntiAsh Superstar
29th January 2003, 08:07 AM
Hehe, finally here's my scenario for the Christmas party, I did start it when the scenario was first posted but I guess I've been too busy/easily distacted/tied up in exams/otherwise preoccupied to get it finished until now, lol!

Life could be a confusing thing at times. At least that was how it appeared to Adreena. Shouldn’t things have been more straightforward than they were? After all, on the surface was her existence not as comfortable as it possibly could be? A nice apartment to live in, a regular supply of good food, friends who, although admittedly eccentric, never demanded anything of her other than her company. And it wasn’t as if she had any reason to feel low any longer. Tamotsu, the wild Umbreon who had been her closest companion for what seemed like an eternity, was no longer out of reach. In fact, it was quite remarkable how he always seemed to locate her with such precision. All the Vaporeon needed to do was to step outside on her own, and within minutes Tamotsu would be at her side, enveloping her with his much-needed affection. She had long begun to suspect, quite rightly, that he possessed more than a hint of psychic power himself. So that wasn’t the problem. The problem was... well, the problem was that she simply didn’t know where she was fitting in. She was feeling insecure. The place Adreena called home had only been that for a month or so, and she was having a harder time finding her niche in the order of things than her always amiable younger sister was. Kirei had slotted into the team perfectly, but for Adreena the ice simply hadn’t broken yet. Of course there were no worries about those she had known in the past - Lucky and Kirei had been a part of her life for so long now that she couldn’t possibly imagine what it would be like without them, and even though Pandora had found her niche with Milliardo, the Houndour was still more than happy to spend a little quality time with Adreena. And everybody else had been so nice to her as well. The Vaporeon sighed, and ran through her newer companions in her mind. Katnip... he was a generally agreeable sort, but Adreena had so little in common with a creature such as the Raticate who lived for competition! Sindel was intelligent enough company, but she pried too much. She would be sticking her nose in without even realising it, so ingrained was her inquisitive nature into her psyche. Beckham and Kasumi were both funny for a short while, but Adreena often found herself tiring of the Wartortle’s faux stupidity and the Growlithe’s gutter-level mentality. Nobody really seemed to get along with Scratchy, he was as antisocial as they came, spending most of his time napping well away from the others. Milliardo... well, there was an odd one, and Adreena really wanted to be able to befriend the Umbreon, not only for Pandora’s sake but also because she often got the impression that there was an intelligent and witty companion lurking underneath the antagonistic front. But his walls were too strong to break through in such a short time. So that left Tsuyoi, myself and Pearl. The Vaporeon sighed to herself. She could get along with that little group. Maybe they had their flaws, but then so did everybody. But they cared, and they were good conversation, and what more did Adreena really need? Tsuyoi might have been initially unsettling, it was an unfortunate side-effect of his heritage, but he had a very strong paternal streak that Adreena identified with in some way. It was that need to keep people close to you, to watch over them. Tsuyoi gained his satisfaction from that. Of course he was forceful, of course he pulled no punches, but he was strong, both mentally and physically, and had earned every drop of respect he received from the others. In myself the Vaporeon saw a fellow hopeless romantic, and she owed me a lot for the hospitality anyway. Again, I had my fair share of character flaws, but in a lot of ways we were quite similar creatures. And then there was Pearl. The more the Vaporeon saw of Pearl, the more she was beginning to view her with a sort of hero-worship. Pearl possessed all of those characteristics that Adreena found most appealing in a person or a pokémon. Intelligence... no, not that, Pearl was wise. Pearl knew what she was talking about. And much like Adreena, Pearl had a mile-wide romantic streak, maybe even lapsing into sentimentality, but that was tempered with an inner strength, a strong sense of self-belief. Pearl was confident without egotism, a born mediator, the lynchpin that the team relied upon. And Pearl was everything Adreena had ever wanted to be.
“Hey.” A voice from behind startled Adreena out of her meditations with the kind of textbook timing that should have come straight from a work of fiction. The Vaporeon turned from gazing out of the window at the night sky to see a pair of bright red eyes, a sleek cream body coated with gorgeously soft fur, and nine busy tails swaying happily towards the rear. Yes, the timing was impeccable, and Adreena had to stifle a laugh at the absurdity of it all.
“Hi.” The Vaporeon nodded politely, but apparently Pearl was having none of that any longer.
“Jeez, dispense with the formality already, would you?” The Ninetales laughed warmly and joined Adreena by the window. “We don’t CARE about manners around here, or hadn’t you noticed?”
“I guess so. Old habits just die hard.”
“Don’t worry, there’s still plenty of time to be corrupted yet!” Pearl gazed out at the darkened sky, obscured by thick black clouds. She shuddered, suddenly cold. The last time it had been quite this dark... well, maybe it was best not to think about that just yet. “I’ve just been talking to Tsuyoi, he’s got a plan for Ade’s Christmas present.”
“Apparently he’s just had a really disturbing vision of what this place is gonna look like once everybody’s fully evolved, and wants to get us a bigger place.” Pearl rolled her eyes. “I mean, we’ve only been here for a year, and he wants us to up and leave just because he gets it into his head that HE wants a little more room. He’s not fooling me, I’ve known him for too long now NOT to wonder about ulterior motives.”
“Tsuyoi isn’t that bad, he seems to care for us.”
“Never said he didn’t, but it’s funny how every decision he makes like this always works out in his favour as well, isn’t it?” Pearl grinned brightly. “Nah, I shouldn’t knock him, it’s good to have him about. Somebody round here needs to be something other than indecisive! And besides, in all fairness I suppose I wouldn’t mind a change of scenery. I’m sick of apartments. I’d like somewhere with a decent garden for once.”
“Yeah.” Adreena nodded forlornly. “Jackie used to have a really lovely garden, sometimes I miss just going outside and staring at the stars. Always little things like that, you know? I never miss the important things... just the trivialities. Just the little things that didn’t seem that important at the time.”
“To quote a character from the Crow film Ade’s watching every other day... believe me, nothing is trivial.” Pearl could see the expression in Adreena’s large, soulful eyes change, a distinctly melancholy feeling reflected within them. Could she really blame her? The Vaporeon had suffered a lot, she had witnessed things that no pokémon should ever have to go through. And she didn’t even have the resilient nature of Kirei or the practical mind of Lucky to help her get over it. Adreena had the soul of an artist, and it was a soul that was easily broken. “Adreena, nobody’s expecting you not to miss those things. Don’t think you’re foolish for giving in to you emotions every now and then. You don’t have to try so hard to keep detached, nobody will think any less of you if you let go. Hey, not everybody can pull of that ‘live for today and block everything else out’ thing your little sister does so well, can they, so why even try? Won’t work for everybody.”
“How do you do that?” Adreena sniffed, finding it harder and harder to fight the tears. “Get straight to the heart of the problem like that?”
“Maybe it just takes somebody else to get you to face things.” Pearl looked surprised, as if she had caught something in Adreena’s glance that she hadn’t been expecting. “Maybe things just seem cleared to an outsider. I don’t know. All I’m trying to do is help a friend, I don’t analyse HOW I do it. However, let me say this now. I can help you if you need it, but I can’t solve your problems myself. I’m not perfect. Pearl can give people a shoulder to cry on if they need it, but Pearl can’t wave a magic wand and make everything okay.”
“And Pearl’s done it again.” Adreena smiled weakly. “Hit the nail on the head without me even saying anything.”
“Guess I’m just better than most at reading others.” The Ninetales shrugged. “But I meant what I said about offering a shoulder to cry on, Adreena. Maybe I’m not as perfect as I suspect you think I am, but I can do that, at least. If it ever gets too much for you, give me a yell, okay? It’s what I’m here for.”
“Right.” Adreena felt as if a huge weight had been lifted from her shoulders. Still she felt that the Ninetales before her was playing down her own talents - or was simply unaware on incapable of recognising them - but if Pearl was willing to give her support, the Vaporeon was sure that she could make it through this. Maybe she would even start to feel like one of the team. One day.

All things considered, I had felt better than I did that morning. I had been out with a friend a few days ago - yes, it even surprised me, that after all this time alone I had finally located another human being I really wanted to spend some time with - but that night had been cheaper than I had expected, albeit infinitely more enjoyable. Hence the bottle of rum the following night, and hence the body that felt like lead this morning. Why had I overindulged so badly this time, after spending so long surviving within my limits? Was it a desire to sustain the good mood I had been in? If so, it hadn’t worked. Maybe part of me felt that SOMETHING had to go wrong, and was hammering my body in the only way it knew how, through ultimately pointless self-destruction. Or maybe it was that good old friend known as ‘drowning your sorrows’, for if it was possible to miss somebody after a mere 24 hours, I had been experiencing that feeling. But whatever the psychological reasons for it, I had overdone things in fine style. No more rum left. I’d polished the whole lot off. And boy, was I paying for it now, with the hangover that seemed insistent on maintaining a less than subtle presence for the entire day.
“It’s all your own fault, you know.” Milliardo was being his usual less than helpful self, going about his business with an unnecessarily loud chirpiness that seemed - and probably was - designed to aggravate my hangover in the most irritating way possible. The Umbreon bounded over and beamed brightly into my face as I sat at the kitchen table with a steaming mug of black coffee. “Want me to put some music on for you? I heard that putting Cradle of Filth on at full blast is a very good hangover cure...”
“Yeah, I can really believe that!” A thin smile crossed my lips. The headache had faded away after less than an hour, as it always did, all it took was some paracetamol and a glass or two of water to rehydrate. So Milliardo’s plan to put on the loudest music he could think of probably wouldn’t have mattered much. But I suspected he already knew as much anyway. Certainly this wasn’t the first time I had been like this in his presence! “No, thanks all the same, but I don’t think sluggishness is something that can be sonically blasted away.”
“How do you know? Have you ever tried?”
“No, but logic dictates that if it WAS possible, I might have stumbled upon that fact by accident by now.”
“Damn you, Ade, you’re no fun.” Milliardo tried to look fed up, but failed miserably. Or maybe he wasn’t even trying. He seemed too good an actor at times when it came to emotions to portray anything other than exactly what he wanted to portray. “Anyway, how long are you going to skulk around here in the kitchen, that’s what I’m here to ask. It’s getting bloody boring round here, and we need something to do. So in times like this we turn to our illustrious leader for advice.”
“Oh? And what did Tsuyoi suggest, then?”
“Hey, you’d better watch it, Ade, you’re almost starting to sound like me!” The Umbreon chuckled to himself. “No, I meant you, idiot. Whilst I’m sure hanging around drinking coffee on your own is no doubt the greatest entertainment ever devised by mankind, you could do us all a huge favour and put your time to better use.”
“Says the pokémon who’s ALSO just hanging around the kitchen.”
“Call me weird, but explain what else there IS to do without you? We can’t really leave the house, and even if we could we wouldn’t know what to do with ourselves. As depressing a prospect as it is, we’re all kind of depending on the alcoholic ****wit called Ade to take the initiative for once.”
“You wouldn’t know tact if you fell over it, would you?” I sighed, draining my mug and reluctantly admitting that the Umbreon had a point, even if it could have been expressed in a far kinder manner.
“Wow, you only just noticed? Ten out of ten for observation there, Ade!” I rolled my eyes. It was clear that Milliardo was in one of his less agreeable moods. Maybe it was sheer restlessness that was making him this way. In which case, didn’t I owe it to everybody to nip this in the bud and provide something to do other than hang around the house? After all, on one point he was absolutely correct. There was very little that a pokémon could do without its trainer. And I probably could have done with a halfway decent distraction, anyway.
“Alright, alright, you win.” I placed my mug on top of the table with maybe a little more force than I had intended, and stood sharply up, overcoming my sluggish body through a great deal of willpower, that willpower that never quite seemed to exist when I really needed it. “Tell the world to celebrate, Ade’s coming out of hibernation.” Okay, so I felt lousy. But that had never been any excuse for not getting up and at least TRYING to go about the day normally, had it?

“Wow! Since when did you become so popular, Ade?” The comment had been sparked by an arrival in the mail. Usually the mail just seemed to be one huge pile of bills that Tsuyoi would take care of, or junk mail that either got binned immediately or used as a frisbee and thrown up and down the room, depending on how bored everybody was. But just every now and then I would receive something that was actually worth my time opening. Today was one of those days. “All these parties and invitations out... are you leading some sort of double life or something?” Pandora seemed to be in quite a good mood for once, which made a refreshing change. Not least because when she was in the mood to have a laugh the Houndour could be quite brilliant company. “A girl could feel left out...”
“No chance with this one!” I turned the invitation over in my hand, musing things over. Another of these strange little activities organised by a group of Dragon Tamers to fill up the time during an unnaturally quiet - and for some immensely frustrating - period. A Christmas party, to be held a few days from today. “Look, trainers are welcome to bring their pokémon, it says so right here.” I held the invitation out so that Pandora could see, wondering as I did so whether pokémon could read or not, and whether this gesture was as futile as it might have been. As it was, my curiosity was soon satisfied.
“Yeah, and there’s also battling contests, so there’s Katnip happy.” Pandora rolled her eyes. “Although you can count ME out of that one, personally I’m more interested in who these ‘live bands’ they’re mentioning are. If it’s any boy-girl-band crap I might have to savage somebody.”
“Look, it says ‘live’, as in everything’s being done live. It doesn’t say anything about ‘prancing around to a recorded backing track whilst cleverly lip-synching soppy, generic, clinical nonsense’ bands, does it?” Milliardo had come up to pay more attention to the invite as well. “We all know that kind of band would demand too much to appear at a tiny little do like this, you know pop’s all about making a fast buck.”
“Wow, turned into a right little music critic, haven’t you? Man, you’re worse than me!” I had to laugh. Maybe Milliardo was being just slightly harsh - although he had a point when it came to a lot of the more well-known names - but as long as you weren’t the butt of his scathing humour it never failed to at least raise a bemused smile. “Guys, you can both rest easy, my experience of bands playing parties and clubs and stuff tells me that we’re talking about a host of ridiculously obscure rock or punk acts who are just glad to have an audience. And if you’re very lucky somebody might turn up who MORE than two people in the audience have heard of.”
“Excuse me, I hate to interrupt this totally scary conversation, but will somebody tell me what’s wrong with pop?” Kirei spoke up, but the odd looks she received off the rest of the team were enough to silence her in seconds. “Oh, forget it, you know I can be a right girly girl when the mood takes me.”
“And you can be bloody scary when the mood takes you as well.” Milliardo stuck his tongue out at the Espeon. “Anyway, why are we talking like this? Ade hasn’t even decided if he wants to go yet!”
“What, and miss out on free alcohol? I thought you knew me better than that, Milliardo!”
“Excuse me, but I thought you were hung over.”
“So I changed my mind.” I laughed easily. Through one reason or another, I had been feeling in a much better mood than I had been in for... well, the last time I had really felt this good in myself, hangover or not, really escaped my mind. Which, if you thought about it, was a depressing enough concept in itself, but I was determined not to dwell on that aspect of my mood, simply for the paradoxical reason that it would have spoiled my mood. “I am hung over, but I won’t be by the time of the party. Which reminds me, maybe we oughta do a little shopping first, I don’t have anything to wear!”
“Liar.” Kirei grinned brightly. “You’ve plenty of clothes. You just found your excuse to blow a ton of money at that alternative clothing store we found last time we were out in the main shopping area of town, that’s all. Still, it doesn’t bother me, I just wished shops like that existed for pokémon!”
“Oh man, I’d be broke in seconds!” I reached over and ruffled the fur on top of the Espeon’s head playfully. “You guys unleashed in a store like that? I can see the red credit card bills arriving even now!” A large smile crossed my face, and for once it seemed to actually stay there for more than ten seconds. No matter what the past or the future held, right now it simply felt good to be alive. And that was something to be treasured.

The days before the party passed quickly. It gave us something to look forward to, some reason for getting through the day, which was something we all needed desperately. Not that life hadn’t seemingly dealt us a reasonable hand already, but the boredom was getting to us. Now, at least, there was this party to prepare for, and the next few days were spent in a blur of excitement, all talk of what would happen at the gathering, of who would be there, and of how we would get ready in the first place. In my mind events were as perfect as they were ever going to get. Of course, there were one or two little things I would have liked to have changed about the situation, but on the whole I was content. It was just nice to see the pokémon that only a few days ago had been listless and frequently irritable transformed back into the lively and vibrant group that I knew they could be. And that in itself was enough to maintain my unnaturally happy condition. If those I cared about were happy, then so was I. That was how it had always been, and how it would probably always be.
“You chosen yet, Ade?” Finally the day of the party had arrived, and as ever I was taking forever in assembling an outfit I was halfway contented with. “Black or black? Ooh, tough choice.” The Ninetales half sat, half lay upon my bed grinned up at me winsomely. I hadn’t seen Pearl so contented in a long time. Maybe she was just reacting to my own good mood. It wouldn’t be surprising, seeing as she was undoubtedly the pokémon closest to me. We had been through too much together NOT to have something of an emotionally symbiotic relationship.
“Hmm... well... oh, screw it, let’s go with the REALLY over the top shirt and hope I don’t mess it up too much. You know how much I hate having to iron that thing.”
“I know how much you hate to do ANY menial work, Ade!” Pearl grinned, hopping down from her place on the bed to nuzzle my leg with affection. I was touched. Again, it was something rather unusual, that something seemingly so simple could matter so much. What was wrong with me? Why, after all this time as a confirmed cynic, was I suddenly reacting to the overly sentimental side of my nature? “Hey, are you alright?” Pearl seemed surprised, suddenly, as if in some way I had reacted in a way that even she hadn’t been expecting. “You seem like something’s bugging you.”
“I’m just surprised at myself, that’s all.” It had taken well over a year, but eventually I HAD realised that there was no hiding anything from the Ninetales. And, if I were to be honest, I more than likely needed her counsel when it was offered. Sometimes Pearl knew what I was feeling far better than even I could have done. “Sometimes I just find it hard to understand myself. I guess I’m just not used to this ‘feeling happy’ thing. When I think back as to how our last Christmas was spent... I don’t know, Pearl, I don’t know whether I should be happy that my life actually seems to be back on track somehow, or whether I should be disturbed that I’m having such difficulty remembering my feelings from a month or two ago!” For some reason I could feel the frustration welling up within me, like a volcano only minutes away from exploding. Frustration with what, though? With myself? With my situation? With the timing of events in my life? Could I even BEGIN to pinpoint the causes of my emotions?
“Sounds like somebody’s having a hard time accepting that things seem to be going well for once.” Pearl offered a sympathetic smile, her ruby eyes boring straight through to the very depths of my soul. Who knew what she saw within there, or what interpretation she would place upon it? “I can understand that. It was all one thing after the other, wasn’t it? If it wasn’t Team Rocket it was the Dark Cloak... I guess even I’m having a hard time adjusting to normality. So it hasn’t been the easiest of years, hasn’t it all worked out for the best, though? We’re all back, we’re all stronger than ever for our experiences. As a group we’ve become even closer. We’ve made new friends. And as for you... well, either I’m getting really hopeless at reading your emotions, which I doubt, or you actually seem to be quite contented for once!” My flustered silence was all the answer Pearl needed. She knew me far too well. Maybe even better than I knew myself. “So you’ve nothing to worry about. All you need is to relax a little, stop being such a self-doubter, and just enjoy yourself. Which, if you ask me, is nothing that either an hour in Kirei’s company or this party won’t fix. Just go out and enjoy yourself, you hear me?” Pearl fixed me with a look that was part exasperation, part bemusement. Such an odd expression didn’t necessarily fit well upon the face of a creature as elegant as a Ninetales, and all of a sudden I found my situation extremely funny, Pearl’s gaze merely the catalyst in making me realise just how absurd I was being. “What’s gotten into you all of a sudden?” I was having a hard time containing my laughter.
“Oh, I’m hopeless, aren’t I?” I chuckled, sitting down on the edge of the unmade bed and running my fingers through Pearl’s wonderfully soft fur, feeling the warmth of her body against my fingertips. “I can’t even feel happy without doubting myself!” I sighed deeply, and looked Pearl straight in the eye. “Okay, lady, you’ve convinced me. Let’s go out and paint the town red.”

The party itself was a far more informal affair than the last celebration held by the Dragon Tamers. Back then it had been a very sombre affair, tainted by the events of the bloody campaigns held in Nagarythe. There had been an almost reverential air to the proceedings. But this... the scene in front of our group, after a lengthy walk made seemingly all the longer by my team’s inability to ever stop bickering, was striking in how much of a contrast it made with that ultimately chaotic day. A huge hall had been hired - obviously the party’s location would have to be large, especially if everybody accepted their invitations - and decorated in suitably festive fashion. Tinsel and streamers lined the walls, and at one end of the hall a gigantic tree was standing, towering over the guests who had arrived before us, and covered with festive lights and baubles. All in all, it seemed to be quite the stereotypical Christmas party. But then again, was anything EVER truly stereotypical around here? Despite the large buffet table set out with all kinds of treats, from sandwiches to chocolates, despite the bar that seemed to be stocked as well as I was hoping it would be, despite the PA system that was currently spewing out some random Christmassy nonsense, this was still Ulthuan, and if there was one thing I had learnt from my time here it was that things never, ever reached a stage where they could be considered predictable.
“So, guys, anything in particular you fancy doing, or shall we get a bite to eat?” I asked my team, my full attention not on any one particular thing. As we moved through the hall I noticed several faces I recognised. No doubt after a few drinks had loosened my tongue I would be talking the ears off those people, but for now an exchange of polite nods or ‘hellos’ would suffice.
“Food sounds good to me!” Kirei grinned brightly. “I don’t know about you guys, but I’m starving!”
“Is it any wonder?” A small smile crossed Adreena’s face, the first time she had seemed truly relaxed in a long time. Maybe it was the festive spirit finally breaking through the Vaporeon’s demure front, or maybe she truly was finding her place withing the group. Either way, it was nice to see her relax slightly. “You’ve been twice as hyperactive as normal today. ANYBODY would be hungry if they’d been running around as much as you have.”
“So I got a little excited. What’s wrong with that? I don’t exactly get invited to parties every day, you know.”
“Oh, I wouldn’t get too carried away if I were you, Kirei.” Pandora sighed, trying her best to pretend she was indifferent to the whole scenario, but as usual those expressive eyes were spoiling the front. The tone was sceptical, but the eyes were filled with wonder. “Based on my experience with Dragon Tamers parties, the instant everyone gets settled down we’re going to get attacked. Or the building’s going to collapse.”
“Or both,” Milliardo chipped in helpfully. “Then we get ambushed by killer demons. Or maybe nothing’ll happen and we’ll have a good time with nothing at all going wrong. But based on our past form I can’t see that happening, really.”
“Oh, stop being such pessimists for once, it’s a party, we’re supposed to have a good time!” Beckham looked around the room, his eyes soon settling on the bar. Clearly his mind was racing through a billion ways a pokémon could sneak a drink or twenty out of a bar designed for human use. “Hey, do you think there’s gonna be any games going on?”
“Yeah, everyone’s gonna sit down and play Pass The Parcel.” Milliardo rolled his eyes. “I think this is gonna be one of those ‘stand around eating, drinking and talking’ things. Unless you count those friendly battles the invitation mentioned as a game.”
“Which nobody is going to do unless they happen to be called Katnip or Kirei.” Pandora shook her head in bemusement. As a creature who only battled when she absolutely had to - the vicious side of battling was something she had seen far too much of to view it as anything other than a frightening experience - the way Katnip viewed it as an art form or Kirei viewed it as a big game was something that never ceased to puzzle the Houndour. “I guess you’ll both be first to queue up for the fights, huh?”
“Nah, you think I’m gonna go off and fight when there’s a party going on?” Kirei laughed in her easy-going fashion. “I might find a bit of competition fun, but I’m not THAT stupid!”
“An’ me... I dunno, I might, but then again, ‘all work an’ no play’ an’ all that crap, yanno?” Katnip shrugged. “Might take a day off from trainin’ fer once.”
“Oh my God, did I just hear right? Katnip just said he might pass up on a battle?” Milliardo gasped in mock horror. “I think I need my hearing checked, that can’t possibly be right.”
“Yeah, I know it’s hard fer yer little brain ta comprehend, but trust me, I do think of other things, yanno!” Katnip grinned brightly, his eyes alighting on the buffet table for the first time. No, this wasn’t really the time to worry about fighting. This was supposed to be a welcome break from all of that, and even Katnip needed a little change in routine every now and then. “Now, how about we quit all the yakkin’ and start with the partyin’? There’s a huge pile of grub over there an’ I’m starvin’. Get the picture yet?”
“Perfectly.” I laughed, in some way admiring the Raticate for his constantly upfront nature. No hiding, no pretenses for him. Katnip was as straightforward as they came. And oh, how many lessons I could learn from him on that score! “Go ahead, buddy, pig out if you want. Same for all of you. We came here to have a good time, so let’s go ahead and do it. And don’t worry about having to stick with me. Spread out if you like. I can’t see any of you being mistaken for anything other than my pokémon.”
“Ha! We’re infamous, eh?” Milliardo grinned broadly.
“You could say that,” came my bemused response. “Put it this way, this team’s one of a kind. Anyway, have fun, guys. If you don’t mind, there’s a bar over there that’s just waiting for me. You know I can’t party very well unless I get a bit tipsy first.”
“Unfortunately for us, we know only too well.” Pearl nuzzled my leg affectionately. “Don’t overdo it, okay? And the ‘have fun’ applies to you as well.”
“I intend on doing.” I broke out into a broad grin, something that rarely crossed my face without being overly forced. Weird. I had almost forgotten how to smile naturally, so when it DID come it almost took my by surprise. Almost.
“Good. Well, see you around, I think I might go grab something to eat now. Anyone with me?”
“Hell yeah!” came the enthusiastic response from Katnip, echoing the thoughts of several other pokémon with empty bellies. I watched them go their separate ways with a bemused smile upon my face. Not many trainers raised their pokémon to be so independent. In fact, in some ways I had overdone it, the line between trainer and friend having become so blurred that it might as well have not existed. But to me that was probably what I was most proud of. I didn’t have a pokémon team. I had a close circle of supportive friends instead, friends who would help me just as much as I helped them. And to me, that was proof enough that I had succeeded as a trainer. Yet what was this? This was no time to be going off into a daydream, to get lost in my thoughts for the millionth time. This was a party, and first and foremost I should have been concentrating on having a good time. Reflection could come later. Now where was that bar again?

“Hey, what’s up with youuu...” Aside from Lucky, who always took top priority within the Espeon’s mind, there was nothing Kirei liked more than a good party. And when Kirei partied, she partied to excess. In that respect we were identical. However, even through the haze of what alcohol she was allowed to get - and this party was a rarity, certainly, for it was generally frowned upon to allow your pokémon to consume such things, although nobody here seemed to mind that much - she was still a lot sharper than people gave her credit for. And she could certainly tell in an instant when something wasn’t quite right with one of her friends. Whether this was more due to her psychic abilities than her powers of perception, however, was a moot point. “C’mon, you can tell me, I won’t tell a soul. Cross my heart.” At this point the Espeon attempted to trace a cross on her chest with one of her front paws, an exercise that would almost certainly have resulted in her crashing to the floor had Lucky not been semi-supporting her the whole time.
“Nothing.” The Kadabra Kirei was talking to shrugged. No, there was nothing wrong. Why should there have been? Didn’t she have everything she needed right about now? Okay, so this wasn’t necessarily Sindel’s scene. She had never been really that comfortable with large groups of strangers, which was why she had been mainly sticking to her own little group. After all, Sindel knew where she stood with them. Even Kirei’s slurred nonsense was in its own way comforting. But that wasn’t necessarily what was bothering the Kadabra. Her attentions, it had to be said, were elsewhere, and you didn’t have to be a Pearl to realise that! “No, I’m fine. Really.” Sindel shook her head as if to try and clear out the cobwebs, before returning her attention to the Espeon and Meowth in front of her. “You seen much of everybody else?” It would be child’s play to find out for herself by probing Lucky’s mind, Sindel thought, although Kirei’s mind was always infuriatingly closed off. But what would be the point? The Kadabra wasn’t so addicted to snooping that she’d ruin a decent conversation opening!
“I keep seeing Pearl around,” Lucky replied before Kirei could start rambling again. “I think she’s trying to broaden her social circle a little. Becks is at the bar. Still.”
“He’s tryin’ to catch up with me.” Kirei giggled madly, nearly falling over again in the process. “I out drank him. And somebody here said it was impossible, didn’t they?” Kirei nuzzled up to Lucky with a drunken smile on her face. “You was wrong, baby! Totally wrong!”
“I wish I’d never opened my mouth now.” Lucky rolled his eyes. Hadn’t he known Kirei long enough to KNOW that she would take a comment like that as a challenge? After all, in times of peace life was just one big game to the Espeon. But he had spoken. And Kirei had taken it as a challenge. And although she had risen to it admirably, she was going to really pay the price in the morning, if not sooner. Lucky was now living in constant fear of her throwing up on the floor. “Anyway, Katnip’s still stuffing himself. Milliardo and Pandora were at the pokémon bar for a little while, but now they’ve gone missing.”
“No guesses what they’re up to, huh? They were getting soooooo clingy, Sindel, it was really funny, I think they forgot where they were. Guess they’ve gone to play in private. Lucky buggers.” Kirei stole a rueful glance over at Lucky, but the Meowth either missed it or pretended not to notice. “Speaking of that, I saw Sumi chatting some poor unfortunate up earlier, she’s gone missing now as well, must’ve finally found someone who wasn’t totally scared off by her advances.”
“Poor guy.” Lucky chuckled.
“Or girl. Who knows? Don’t think it matters that much to our Sumi. Hey. Hey. Ground control to major Sindel?” Kirei took a drunken step forward to prod the Kadabra, but only succeeded in finally toppling over and dragging Lucky down with her. “Ow. I felled over. Sindel, tell me what’s on your mind now or I’ll start crying. My nose hurts. Lucky, kiss it better.”
“It’s all your own fault.” The Meowth helped the unsteady Espeon back to her feet, before giving her a quick peck on her petite nose. “But Sindel, she does have a point, something IS the matter isn’t it?” Lucky stared at the Kadabra with an odd look upon his face, and finally Sindel realised that there was no point in trying to hide it. Besides, how hypocritical would that have been of her to continue being so evasive? If somebody was being like that with her, she would have resorted to every trick she knew to get at the truth. “Come on, maybe we... well, maybe I can help.”
“Well...” Sindel let her gaze return to where it had been pointedly fixed nearly all evening, to the corner of the hall where the practise battles were being held. A small arena had be cordoned off, so that the pokémon could battle without fear of accidentally running into the main party. Right now it was in use, a powerful Ampharos putting the finishing blow to a Flareon that had foolishly challenged it. “I don’t know. I was just wondering whether I should go over there and have a go at the battling. I’ve never actually fought in this body, you know. I was just a little Abra when I last battled. I was thinking it might be an idea to go get some practise in, whilst the battles are just friendly match ups. But... I don’t know, it just seems a little weird to want to battle in the middle of a party!”
“Well, mate, lemme tell ya something. Better to go over and do what you think you have to than spend the entire party dithering, right?” The others looked at Kirei oddly. “What? Did I say something stupid? Sorry, I’m me, get used to it.”
“No, I’m just in shock.” A slow smile crossed Sindel’s face. “You made sense, I’m not used to that off a drunk Kirei!”
“Does this mean you’ve made your mind up, then?” Lucky grinned broadly. Despite her frequent silliness, Kirei was a lot shrewder than she pretended to be.
“Yeah. Let’s go see if I can’t get a little training in. Makes sense to use it if it’s there, right?”

“And there goes another challenger! Oh, such a pity! That makes it ten billion to the house pokémon, and all of half a victory to everybody else! What kind of suicidal moron is going to take up the challenge next?” The little group of pokémon arrived at the scene to be greeted with the sight of a pokémon they knew all too well sat down by the side of the ring lending his less than helpful commentary to the proceedings. “Oh my God, here comes just the person we’ve been looking for. Hi, Thingy!” Milliardo turned to welcome his teammates, before returning to watch the action. “Well, this is an unexpected development. We now turn to our resident expert in being a psychopath. Pandora, what do you suppose this will mean for events in the ring, events outside the ring, events in Lord of the Rings and the world economy in general?”
“Well, I predict total Armageddon within the next few weeks, if not for the world then for smartarses who indirectly refer to their girlfriends as psychopaths.” It was quite clear that neither pokémon was necessarily in the most sane of moods. But then again, to see two pokémon who were normally so downbeat actually having a little fun was worth the nonsense that came part and parcel of the package. “Let’s interview the new arrivals. What brings two of the most level-headed pokémon on the planet and the world’s drunkest Espeon to a ****ty little place like this?”
“Sindel wanted a battle.” Kirei nodded vigorously. “And we came to cheer her on.”
“Well, it’s a good thing somebody has, coz I can’t see Milliardo cheering anybody on.” Pandora chuckled. She was clearly enjoying herself for once. “He’s just been running his mouth off the whole time. I think he’s preparing to write a book called ‘How To Lose Friends and Irritate People’.”
“No change there, then.” Sindel rolled her eyes. Maybe this wasn’t such a good idea after all. Fighting in the middle of a party was weird enough, but having the Umbreon there would only compound things further. Of course Sindel knew that he never really meant to be mean, sometimes he did have that tendency to cross the line. “I don’t know, maybe I’ll wait for a while, see what’s going on later.”
“Nonsense, Thingy!” Milliardo moved over to join the group, a broad smile upon his face. “The last few pokémon to fight totally underestimated the strength of that thing over there.” The Umbreon cocked his head in the direction of the arena, where a Pidgeotto was currently nestling with an intimidating look on its face. “It’s been embarrassing to watch. I insist that somebody with half a brain fights it. It’s too smug and I want to see the look on its face when it finally loses.”
“Hang on.” Sindel raised a hand to silence the Umbreon. This was all getting too surreal for her! “Did I just hear you right? Did you just as good as say you thought I could win?”
“Hey, credit where credit’s due, Thingy, you may well be an infuriatingly nosy, stubborn creature, but you know how to handle yourself.” Milliardo cackled loudly, the usual sneer he reserved solely for dealing with Sindel now firmly back in place. “Of course, if you don’t think you’re up to it...” The Umbreon turned his back on his teammate, obviously intending to walk away, back to his ringside position. That was a challenge, plain and simple. And nobody knew Milliardo’s power to talk anyone into anything in this manner like the Umbreon himself. Especially Sindel. It was child’s play to ensnare her, hellbent as she was on earning more than an unspoken respect from a pokémon she had probably known for much longer than anybody else on the team. “Forget it. You’re probably still not certain enough of your Kadabra body. It was a stupid idea.”
“Hold it.” All things considered, Milliardo was quite glad he had his back to the Kadabra right now. It concealed his knowing smirk quite admirably. Although he had to wipe it from his face rather quickly when Sindel ran over to his side. But that was no problem. He was Milliardo, after all. Putting on a front was his speciality. “Getting used to fighting like this was why I’m here.”
“Well you picked a lousy time for it, that’s all I can say. That guy doesn’t pull any punches, you know.” At least on this point Milliardo was telling the truth. The sole reason he had been watching the fights in the first place was to watch as a pokémon that radiated egotism was brought down a peg or two. But so far he had been badly disappointed. Apparently this pokémon had the skills to back up its confidence.
“I don’t care. All the better if he’s fighting to win.” There was a steely look in Sindel’s eyes that indicated she had made up her mind. She had taken the bait better than Milliardo could have ever hoped. “That way I get a good fight, don’t I?” So saying, the Kadabra made her way up to the ring. Nobody tried to stop her, even if she came without a trainer. Maybe it was true that the unorthodox methods of training we used were fast giving us some measure of infamy. Or maybe it was a common sight for pokémon to just decide to have a go at battling without consulting their trainers first, at least where this party was concerned. Certainly my team weren’t the only ones that were wandering around on their own accord! In fact, the only one who seemed to mind was the Pidgeotto. Clearly it thought that this Kadabra was not enough of a challenge for it.
“What’s this?” the bird pokémon trilled, an uppity edge to its tone that made Sindel instantly dislike it upon open its mouth. “Another weak opponent? I was led to believe I’d get a challenge by competing in this... charade.”
“And you’ll get one. Give me a chance.” Sindel, as was her nature, had already used her psychic powers to make a quick assessment of her opponent, and it didn’t impress her much. This was one shallow creature, only concerned with how its victories would reflect upon it, only wanting the glory of winning. All of a sudden she could appreciate why Milliardo was so eager to see this pokémon lose.
“Hardly worth my time,” the Pidgeotto huffed.
“What, afraid I might beat you?” Sindel had never really been comfortable with this kind of fighting talk, but it was clearly the only way she was ever going to get this battle underway. “I think you know I’ll be a challenge and you’re chickening out.”
“Chickening out?” For a second the Pidgeotto seemed enraged, but he quickly regained his composure again. If it was possible to smile with a beak, this pokémon was doing so right now. “Well, I like your courage, if nothing else. Fine. I’ll give you your battle.” The wings went up into a fighting pose. “But I don’t go easier on ladies you know.”
“Suits me fine.” Sindel braced herself. This one was certainly going to be interesting!

AntiAsh Superstar
29th January 2003, 08:11 AM
FIGHT!!! L16 Kadabra v L25 Pidgeotto!

Sindel narrowed her eyes, hoping to use her psychic abilities to gain some measure of what her opponent was planning. But her powers had never worked that way. They were powerful, certainly, but they had to be forced. She simply didn’t have that subtle sixth sense that Kirei could so effortlessly use, so it was pointless even trying. She would just have to judge events as best she could.
This moron works by getting the first hit in and never letting up from there. A familiar voice echoed within Sindel’s head. Her eyes flicked to Milliardo, still sat by ringside, his mouth not moving in the slightest. Don’t look so surprised, Thingy, us Dark types make a living by running rings around you psychics, remember? Stands to reason we know a few of your tricks. Anyway, if I were you I’d be teleporting away right now, coz he looks like he’s about to attack, and not even I really want to see you being turned into jam by those talons of his. Milliardo out. Sindel would have commented on how Milliardo made telepathy sound like it was some kind of walkie-talkie system, but she knew the Umbreon better than to forget about his warning. Swiftly the Kadabra moved herself to the air a few inches above where the Pidgeotto’s head had been a mere moment ago, before he had decided to launch himself at full speed towards her. Now his beak met cold air instead of flesh, and Sindel suddenly realised why he had seemed to reluctant to battle. If Milliardo’s theory was correct, the prospect of fighting an opponent who could just slip away at any given moment wasn’t something that this Pidgeotto would have relished. It would ruin his entire strategy. And if that was the case, Sindel had the advantage. If he couldn’t reach her, he couldn’t hurt her.
“Damn you.” The fire in her opponent’s eyes as he wheeled round to face her only seemed to confirm Sindel’s suspicion. He looked like he was only just managing to avoid going into a fully fledged temper tantrum. “Levitating won’t help you! I have the advantage in the air!” With a single beat of his powerful wings, the Pidgeotto hurtled towards Sindel, intent on doing some serious damage.
“If you can reach that far, you probably would.” Sindel’s eyes began to glow for a second, before she threw as large a psychic blast at the mind of her opponent as she could muster. Confusion was a simple attack once your psychic powers grew large enough to be used in their purest form. Attack the brain with as much force as possible, and reduce your opponent’s mind to rubble. Sometimes it would work so well that it would reduce the target to a confused wreck. Sometimes it wouldn’t. But it always, always hurt. And, as Sindel had correctly predicted, there was no way that anything could keep up its intended path after being struck by a force such as that attack. It was enough to send the Pidgeotto hurtling back down to the ground, and it was only his admirable single-mindedness that let him recover in time to prevent from striking the floor. “Come on.” Sindel rolled her eyes. This was no challenge! Her opponent’s blind pride was preventing him from being half the fighter he could well have been. “Can’t you just forget about the crowds and fight without the show?”
“Lady, I was raised to believe that the spectacle is half the fun of the fight. I won’t abandon my style just for you!” And once again the Pidgeotto launched himself at Sindel, and the Kadabra once more prepared to avoid his attack. Only maybe she had underestimated his speed this time, for he was upon her before she could move away, striking her hard in the chest with his beak. It was as if Sindel’s entire torso had exploded with pain. It knocked all of her calm out of her, and all of a sudden she was caught in a terrible maelstrom, a whirl of sharp blows from beaks, and vicious cuts from talons, slicing away at any part of the Kadabra’s body that exposed itself as a likely target. Sindel spent a long time in this panicked state, where confusion and pain were the only two constants in her existence, before the rational part of her mind finally decided to take command once again. And it was telling her to get the hell out of her current position. Quickly. She didn’t need telling twice, and finally managed to gather her thoughts together for long enough to move herself quickly back to ground level, well away from this psychotic pokémon. Finally the Kadabra had a second or two to assess her situation, and it wasn’t good. She hadn’t sustained any major injuries, at least nothing that a few bandages wouldn’t fix, but the blows had taken a great toll upon her physical strength. She wouldn’t be able to survive another onslaught like that. And both combatants knew it.
“Why don’t you just give up? It’d be a lot easier.” An indulgent tone had crept into the Pidgeotto’s tone. Well, he was an entertainer alright, he could ham it up with the best of them! But there was some substance amidst all of that, and not to have noticed that earlier had been the reason why Sindel had been caught unawares. Well, she wasn’t going to make the same mistake twice!
“No chance.” Sindel’s eyes flared again, and for a moment it seemed as if she was going to launch into another Confusion attack. Certainly that was how it appeared to the Pidgeotto, who had fought Psychic type pokémon before, and knew how to brace himself against their attacks to a certain degree. However, it wasn’t her psychic powers she was calling upon, and if it were then it was a radically altered version of them. It was her Hidden Power, that control over the ice elements that had served her so well as an Abra. However, her powers had increased exponentially with her evolution, something that for the moment Sindel had forgotten. And so what the Kadabra had intended to be a simple blow of cold energy left her with the strength of a blizzard, striking her opponent with alarming ferocity, chilling him to his very soul. He couldn’t hope to stay aloft when being battered by such extreme forces, nor could he hope to cling onto consciousness for very long. So he just let himself drop, this time too weak to attempt to save himself from a collision with the floor, and hence landing on the hard floor with a loud crash. He didn’t stir for a long time, and for a second Sindel thought that the battle was hers. But it wasn’t to be. Soon enough the Pidgeotto picked himself up, battered and bruised, but still very much in action. Except... except there was something slightly different about him this time. Something about the look in his eye.
“I... I admit defeat.” These were hard words indeed to speak, but even a prideful creature such as this knew his limits. He might have been an egotist at times but he was no fool. Another blow would surely finish him. “If you were looking to knock some sense into me, you certainly managed it.” Was that humility that was creeping into his expression? Surely not! “So I’ll bow out gracefully now and acknowledge a superior battler.”
“This is a far cry from your earlier attitude, isn’t it?” Sindel seemed surprised at the sudden change of attitude. Who wouldn’t be after the earlier smug superiority?
“All show.” The Pidgeotto gave a dismissive wave of a wing. “I’m no serious battler. Think of me as... I don’t know, a pokémon version of a professional wrestler? Has the skills, but is far happier flexing his muscles than participating in any serious fights. Maybe I still have yet to find the fine line I need to walk between talent and showmanship, hm?” And with this, the Pidgeotto hobbled painfully out of the arena, back to wherever the pokémon brought here to battle went to repair their wounds. Leaving Sindel standing there, the victory hers but her head too filled with questions to truly appreciate it. But then again, wasn’t that always the way when Sindel battled?

Sindel wins!
Sindel grew to L18!
Sindel learned Disable!

“Told you.” Milliardo grinned knowingly as Sindel made her way back down from the ring. “Told you that you could beat that idiot with both arms tied behind your back.”
“It wouldn’t be hard, Milliardo, she’s a Kadabra, she doesn’t actually need to use her arms in battle at all.” Pandora seemed to be just as happy as her boyfriend. Then again, that wasn’t really surprising. Pandora’s sense of self-worth was so low that the only way you COULD make her happy was by pleasing those around her. In Pandora’s world, she didn’t exist herself, but those around her most certainly did.
“Oh, stop being so pedantic. You know what I meant.”
“Milliardo, I NEVER know what you mean. You’re too confusing for us mere mortals to comprehend.”
“Then understand this.” Milliardo leant over and kissed Pandora passionately.
“See what I mean?” Kirei giggled, a manic tone to her voice. “They keep forgetting they’re in the middle of a huge crowd.”
“Don’t.” Milliardo pulled away from Pandora, far sooner than the Houndour would have liked, even though she kept quiet about her boyfriend’s slight for once. “We just no longer give a ****. What’s the point in pretending, everyone knows anyway. So the way I see it, we do what we like where we like, and screw everybody else and their opinions.” This was a hasty cover-up, of course, segueing quite admirably into a tirade that was so classically Milliardo that the entire thing seemed almost believable. “Anyway, where were we before I looked too long at Pandora and understandably became crazed with lust?”
“I was going to ask you since when did you know how to use telepathy, that’s where we were.” Sindel gave Milliardo an odd look. “It isn’t like you to keep a power like that quiet.”
“Nah, I always kind of knew I had it, but what’s the point? Anything I’d want to say over telepathy I can say quite happily in the more traditional manner. Call me old fashioned, but I still prefer to run my mouth off than pull any secret messages. And it’s a ***** for me to concentrate long enough to do that properly anyway.” The Umbreon chuckled, just a small trace of unease within his tone. Serious conversation about his own abilities had never been one of his favourite pastimes. “I’m a lousy telepath, and it doesn’t work half the time anyway. Lucky for you it did work that time, though, Thingy. You’d have been massacred without my help, admit it.”
“Yeah, right.” Sindel couldn’t help but notice the sudden change in the direction of conversation, but she didn’t much care to press the point. If it made Milliardo uncomfortable, talking about it too much would undoubtedly result in completely spoiling the party atmosphere. After all, there was nothing like an annoyed Milliardo to put everyone in a bad mood! “I’ve a question. Whilst we’re here, anybody else want to play with the fights?”
“I would, Sindel darling, I really would, but you know, it’s like those daft little Pokémon video games, ain’t it, I’ll go into battle, it’ll go ‘Kirei was confuzzled’ followed by ‘Kirei hurt herself in her ridiculous state of confuzzledness’.”
“Meaning I’d fall on my nose again before I even got into the ring.” Well, it was true. The Espeon was having great difficulty in walking unaided, never mind fighting! “Hey, Lucky, Mr. Walking stick Lucky boy, why don’t you give it a go?”
“Me???” Lucky blinked in surprise. This was unexpected!
“Sure. You said you hadn’t battled in ages, why not get a bit of exercise in, I’m not gonna fall over or anything without you. Well, maybe I am, but I can always lean on Pandora or something.” Kirei giggled foolishly. She hadn’t sobered up any. In fact the Espeon was making Beckham seem like a teetotaller. “Go on, Lucky, I dare ya. I’ll give you another of my magic special psychic hugs if you do.”
“I’m not sure if I want one with you in this state!” Lucky grinned, only the faintest of blushes coming to his cheeks. He knew what Kirei was talking about. She could couple psychically as well as physically, in fact when it came to giving pleasure the Espeon left Kasumi, the resident expert in such matters, standing cold.
“You sure?” Kirei peered deep into Lucky’s eyes, and even though she was clearly in a totally ridiculous mood there was still such beauty, such understated innocence within her large eyes that the Meowth melted after a mere second of looking into them. Kirei could talk Lucky into anything. And they both knew it.
“Well... maybe I was lying a bit there...” The Meowth’s blush deepened, and then disappeared just as suddenly as he focussed his mind on other matters. It was certainly true that he hadn’t battled in a while. And whilst that situation had suited him quite fine - Lucky was far too timid by nature to get any kind of enjoyment out of battle - he knew well enough that it wouldn’t hurt to just keep in shape. Just in case he was ever required to really fight. Just in case he was caught in another situation where the stakes were a lot higher than merely besting your opponent. Certainly he had seen enough horrors to know that such a thing was possible. So why not take the opportunity to get a little practise in now? In case he was required once again to help protect those he cared about. “Yeah. Okay.” He had made up his mind. “You’ve talked me into it.”
“Knew I could.” Kirei gave Lucky a quick peck on the cheek. “You go show ‘em what you’ve got, my boy! And your wonderful and hyper girlfriend is gonna sit here and cheer you on so frantically that she’ll even end up drowning out Milliardo.”
“I’ll believe THAT one when I hear it.” Lucky returned the Espeon’s kiss, then gently handed her over to Sindel’s care, knowing full well that she was far more likely to take good care of her than the other pokémon in the vicinity. Not that Milliardo and Pandora wouldn’t have done, but in their current hyperactive states they would have done her more harm than good. Sindel, at least, would stay still enough not to provoke the vomiting fit Lucky was sure would be coming in a matter of time. “Okay then. Wish me luck, guys.” And with this, Lucky made his way to the ring, a voice echoing in the back of his head wondering if this was really such a good idea after all.

As it happened, the sight that greeted Lucky once he had been allowed into the ring was enough to placate his fears instantly. All this time he had been worried about encountering a creature of the same intensity as Sindel’s earlier opponent. He simply didn’t think he could defeat a pokémon as frantic as that had been. Fortunately the pokémon at the opposite side of the ring wasn’t the ferocious opponent of his nightmares at all, in fact it was of a species that couldn’t look ferocious or intimidating if they tried. It seemed that tonight Lucky’s opponent would be a Marill, one of a race that was renowned for their generally friendly natures. And, if the stereotypes were true, an ideal sparring partner for a generally gentle creature such as Lucky. Fortunately this particular pokémon didn’t seem to have any intention of going against the cheerful image that it’s smiling, cuddly exterior suggested, bounding over to greet Lucky as he entered the arena.
“Hiya!” The Marill beamed brightly. “I guess you’ll be my opponent, huh?”
“I guess so.” Lucky didn’t really know what to make of this creature at all. It seemed to be more concerned with making conversation than battling.
“Oh, cool!” A girlish giggle emanated from the tubby pokémon. “Tell you the truth, this is gonna be my first battle in ages. My owner hires himself out for all these occasions, you know. He got employed by the Dragons Guild to help with the training grounds, you know. That was the last time I battled, coz I got ill and I only really just recovered.”
“Really.” Lucky knew this type well. He’d lived with a very similar creature most of his life. If he was correct, the little Marill would continue her story regardless of the impatient tone he had deliberately inserted into his voice. Sure, it was cute, in a way, this open attitude, but he was here to fight, not talk!
“Yeah. It was really bad.” Apparently Lucky’s assessment of his opponent had been spot on. “It really knocked the strength out of me, I had to spend ages retraining before I was allowed to fight again. In fact...” A loud and impatient coughing came from the direction of the Marill’s corner of the ring, and for the first time she became aware of the plain man in the brown coat glaring at her. Seemingly oblivious to his impatience, she merely offered a smile and a cheerful wave, before returning her attention to Lucky, who was fast beginning to wonder if he hadn’t found the female version of Beckham here. “Oh well. Looks like we’re gonna have to start this fight soon, or I’m gonna get yelled at. He’s always yelling at me, that guy, it’s not my fault I like to get to know my opponents a little bit. He’s always making this whole business so impersonal, you know! Hey... uh, never mind, it can wait.” The Marill caught herself in time to prevent another rambling outburst. “What’s you’re name, by the way?”
“I’m Lucky.” The Meowth offered a paw, which was shaken with almost predictable eagerness. Well, if nothing else the Marill seemed sincere enough, even if the airheaded attitude would probably begin to grate after a while. No doubt Scratchy or Milliardo would have found her irritating to the extreme, but so far Lucky’s patience was nowhere near its limits. Too long in the presence of Kirei had made him almost immune to these hyperactive outbursts. In fact Lucky had grown to find them somewhat endearing.
“Hiya, Lucky! My name’s Megan.” The Marill finally let go of Lucky’s paw and hopped with surprising agility back into her corner, where she struck up a fighting pose so over the top that it would have looked ridiculous on ANY pokémon, never mind a tubby Marill! It was all Lucky could do to keep a straight face, although from the sounds of things his teammates weren’t succeeding on that score, his ears could easily pick out several familiar guffaws from amidst the bustle of the party! Well, that was fine by him. Let them enjoy themselves. He could go and rejoin them soon enough, but right now he had more pressing business to attend to. “You ready?”
“As ready as I’ll ever be, I guess.” Lucky dropped, ready to pounce, his every muscle tensed. Sure, this Megan seemed harmless enough, but Lucky had learned long ago that appearances could be deceptive. He would have to be prepared for anything. He had lived in Ulthuan for too long to expect anything else from his battles.

FIGHT!!! L16 Meowth v L16 Marill!

“Okay, here goes!” Megan was clearly not the sort of pokémon who believed in hanging around. Not that Lucky had really expected her to. The impression he got was of a decidedly hyperactive creature, so fortunately he had been expecting a rushed attack to start things off. And a rushed attack he got, as the Marill curled herself into a tight ball and rolled towards him at a quite impressive rate. This was Rollout, and it was an attack he had no intention of letting connect. He had been schooled too well for that, both by his trainer and by the mere act of living. So it wasn’t really all that hard to leap carefully over the tumbling pokémon, his evasion helped tremendously by the fast reflexes that came with being a Meowth. A loud thudding sound from behind told Lucky that yes, the Marill had collided with the arena’s boundary, just as he had suspected she would do. It was all very well having the speed to use Rollout, but to maintain the attack required a degree of control that Megan clearly didn’t have.
“Dammit...” the Marill groaned, picking herself up from where she had fallen. “I should’ve known better. I never do seem to be able to get that one right. Now... where’d he get to?” A large handful of coins answered her question, Lucky having decided that a Pay Day attack seemed to be the best way of getting your opponent’s attention in battle. Megan squealed, caught by surprise as the coins struck her in the back of the head. She turned around to face Lucky with a look of pure indignation that looked quite comical on a creature of her species. “Don’t DO that!”
“Look, we’re fighting here, aren’t we?” Lucky sighed. Even his patience had its limits, and his opponent’s insistence on taking her airheaded attitude into battle was starting to test those boundaries. He was beginning to wonder which of them stood to learn the most from this battle. Wasn’t HE supposed to be the one who was getting practise out of the situation? It felt more like he was having to teach the Marill how to fight! “It’s your own fault for dropping your guard like that!”
“I guess you have a point,” came the sheepish reply. “Okay, I’ll try harder in future! Right, you ready?”
“I’ve been ready for ages, but yeah. Show me what you’ve got.”
“Okay, you asked for it!” Without warning the little pokémon took in a deep breath, seemingly making her tubbier than ever. The sight was distracting, in fact distracting enough to momentarily make Lucky forget what he was witnessing. And by the time he realised that he was about to be struck with a Water Gun attack it was too late. The huge torrent of pressurised water was already hurtling towards him at full speed, and not even his superior speed could save him from being struck hard in the chest and thrown backwards by the force of the water stream. In the fact that he wasn’t sturdy enough to stand his ground, the Meowth was rather fortunate. The instant he fell to the floor he was at least out of the attack’s pummelling onslaught. Picking his soaking body up from the wooden floor, Lucky blinked away the tears in his eyes that had formed in his eyes as a result of the sudden impact. His opponent was quite amateurish, nobody could deny that, but she did have some degree of talent. The force of the blow he had just taken was proof enough of that! If he let her get in too many attacks like that he would lose. So the best plan was obviously to make sure that scenario didn’t happen, and up the ante somewhat. Which wasn’t too hard. He would just have to actually put some effort into this fight. Eyes narrowing, the Meowth shot forward towards Megan with as much speed as he could muster, his claws extending in preparation for an attack. The Marill didn’t know what hit her. From her viewpoint, one minute she had floored her opponent with the hardest Water Gun she could muster, the next minute he was up again, practically upon her, and it took a searing pain in her side, where a set of sharp claws had tore into her flesh, to make her realise just was going on. Her little black eyes widened. And...
“Oh come on, it can’t be THAT bad.” Lucky grimaced, trying his hardest to block out the sudden scream of his opponent. But it was hard. He had never enjoyed drawing blood, and when his claws were responsible for a reaction such as the one he was witnessing now it made him wish he had never been born a Meowth in the first place. Megan was overreacting, for sure, her natural blubber was going to minimise the damage she had taken. But she was a naive creature, and this was probably the first time she had even been visibly wounded in battle. To an extent Lucky could forgive the hysterics. The wound probably looked worse than it actually was. “You’re going to have to get used to it. If you want to continue fighting you’ll probably end up battling pokémon with far nastier claws than me.” Lucky shuddered. If this was her reaction to a little swipe from a Meowth who actually went out of his way to avoid causing major damage, how would this little tyke fare against a less merciful opponent? And if she ever faced a Sandslash, well, that didn’t bear thinking about.
“I’m okay.” For a second the colour seemed to drain from Megan’s cheeks, as if the reality of Lucky’s words had just sunk in, but she was soon back to her usual self, the cuts apparently forgotten even if they were still bleeding, a fine trickle of crimson blood running down her side. “I just... eh, I’ve never really been very good with the sight of blood, especially my own. Guess I’m a little too squeamish to make a good fighter, huh?”
“Oh, whatever, it doesn’t matter. At least I try. Speaking of which, wanna carry on the battle? You’ll probably win and all, but like I say, I try, even if it isn’t usually good enough.” Megan struck her over the top fighting pose yet again, which elicited a smile from Lucky. If nothing else she was a stubborn one!
“If you like.” The battle, in Lucky’s eyes, had gone on for long enough. It was time to put an end to it. So as Megan rolled herself up one more time, attempting to maybe prove to herself that she could use Rollout, Lucky stood his ground. He knew what he had to do. He had just put off using it, because even a pokémon such as the gentle Meowth knew that a battle that was over in a single blow wasn’t a battle worth having. But now it was time to finish things, and Lucky knew just the move to defeat a Marill. Even now, as his opponent began to make her unsteady course towards him, he could feel the static charge building up within him, feel his fur begin to stand on end as the charges within each strand of hair began to push them away from each other. He needed time, of course, it wasn’t a skill that came naturally to the Meowth family, so he was somewhat glad that Megan wasn’t the fastest of creatures. It gave the Meowth just enough time to build up the electrical charge within him to a degree that could actually be used. And just as Megan was upon him, Lucky unleashed that charge, striking the Marill hard with a blast of electrical energy, a Thunderbolt, that threw her clean across the arena. There was no way she could have managed to stay conscious after all of that, and when she finally hit the floor again it was not to get up. Lucky had won, quite decisively, but to him it was a hollow victory. Most victories were. So he didn’t stay to revel in his glory, he simply slipped away, out of the ring and back to his friends, silently cursing the part of his brain that had ever said it was a good idea to fight without a good reason. To Lucky, a battle without a cause was the most pointless thing of all.

Lucky wins!
Lucky grew to L17!

By the time Lucky had returned to his friends, he found almost all the team waiting for him, having tired of their individual explorations and reassembling in the group they knew best. There were one or two exceptions, of course - Scratchy had clearly scuttled off to wherever it was quietest, in fact the chances of the loner Paras still being in this crowded room were remote. And Beckham was still at large in the room, no doubt still having too much of a good time socialising with other pokémon to remember to come back and say hi from time to time. But in the main the team were back together, regardless of the various states we had turned up in.
“Hey Lucky,” I grinned, waving as my Meowth made his way towards us. Currently I was sat upon a chair surrounded by pokémon, a half-finished vodka and coke resting on a nearby table and an exhausted Espeon half-asleep in my lap. Evidently all the partying and overdoing things had eventually proved too much even for the seemingly infinite energy of Kirei. “You missed the light show.”
“Light show?” Lucky blinked, his curiosity overriding the bleak depression that came after every battle.
“Yeah. While you were battling the lighting started turning all these pretty colours. I’ve no idea how they managed to do that, but it was pretty impressive.” I reached over and finished off my drink. The bar area had been quite boring, really, all the people I actually knew of the Dragon Tamers either were underage or had no real interest in drinking. Which was why I had taken my drink over to watch the battles, keeping a firm eye on the stage just in case something interesting happened. There had been a band on earlier, Unwritten Law or something. I hadn’t heard of them before, but they went down quite well, and were enough on the right side of the line dividing a good band of their genre from a merely alright one to warrant further investigation. Of course, I would have rather a band like Millencolin or Bad Religion playing, but I wasn’t really about to complain about the music choice.
“Yeah. They could have really brought Bad Religion to an obscure party in the middle of nowhere, couldn’t they?” Apparently I had been thinking aloud, either that or Milliardo had tapped into my thoughts, for the Umbreon was now voicing his opinion on my ideas of which punk acts I would have liked to have seen. “Get Rancid in as well, huh? And see if the Sex Pistols would have liked to have reformed just for our benefit. And magically reincarnate Joey and Dee Dee Ramone for a Ramones concert. And...”
“Yeah, yeah, I get the idea. Never heard of ‘wishful thinking’ before?” Abruptly I reached down and petted the Umbreon, something he rarely allowed but seemed reasonably happy with at the minute. His fur was short, certainly, but it had an almost silky quality to it. It was wonderful to touch, and not for the first time I wished Milliardo would just be a little more open with his emotions. It would allow for a lot more contact. “See, Milliardo, I reckon you could be quite cuddly if you put your mind to it.”
“And you could be sober for ten seconds if you put your mind to it, too, but I can’t see that happening. I’d rather die than be thought of as cuddly.”
“Milliardo, you’re cuddly.” Pandora decided this was the perfect moment to chip in, but then paused, looking around the slowly emptying hall. “Oh, I don’t know, is it me or is this party starting to wind down now?”
“Yeah.” I yawned. Kirei wasn’t the only one who was starting to feel sleepy! “I think it finishes at around midnight, though I’ve always lobbied for an ending time for these things that falls somewhere between three and four AM.”
“Hell, that’d kill you!” Pearl shook her head in disagreement. “You’ve been slowly drinking the bar dry all night, personally I think midnight’s a good cut off time for you. We don’t need you ending up like Kirei, thanks!”
“No worries about that, I can at least get up and walk.” Thinking about getting up, it was probably time for us to leave. Pearl was right, I probably couldn’t withstand much more partying tonight. Maybe it was time for me to say my goodbyes and leave everyone to it. Carefully I picked the sleeping Kirei up - although the Espeon was currently sleeping so deeply that I could have put her on a roller coaster ride and she would have slept through the entire thing - and got to my feet. As tempting as the prospect was, I couldn’t just sit around here forever! “Okay. Time we were out of here. Somebody go find Becks and Scratchy for me, would they?”
“I’m on it, dude!” Katnip was shooting off before I had even finished speaking, and not for the first time I wondered exactly where the Raticate managed to get all of his energy from.
“Oh well. I guess I’d better go say my goodbyes to everyone. Well, everyone who’s not already left.” Where exactly had the time gone? It seemed to me that every time I started enjoying myself whole chunks of the evening would just mysteriously disappear. At least I hadn’t left it until past midnight before doing anything, which was more than can be said for some of my attempts at going out! My eyes scanned the room, searching for the few people I talked to amongst the congregation. And as ever, I was spotted long before my useless powers of vision had managed to pick out a single face.
“Are you leaving now, Ade?” It was Gabi, as ever. One of the few people in Ulthuan I considered a friend, even though nearly all of the others were also assembled in the room. I could always talk to Gabi, which was quite remarkable seeing as it usually took me forever to relax enough to talk comfortably with most people.
“Yeah.” I gestured to the Espeon asleep in my arms. “It’s probably for the best that we get back now. Although it’s been one hell of a party, I really enjoyed it.”
“Did I just hear you right? You just said that you enjoyed a social gathering? I guess we must have done something right!”
“Or maybe I’m just changing for the better. Although it is quite odd to hear me say something like that. Sometimes I surprise even myself.” I grinned broadly. “Like now, I’m leaving a party before I get thrown out. A minor miracle if you ask me. Even I have to have my sane moments, I guess.”
“There’s nothing wrong with having some fun every now and then. Although overdoing things is bad, and I’m glad to see you know your limits, spending all your time working is just as undesirable.”
“You should have a chat with Pearl someday, you know that?” I raised an eyebrow. “I think you two would get on really well. So things have been busy, I take it?”
“Aren’t they always?” Gabi shrugged. “You know I always seem to have too much to do. But I think I might take things a little easier, at least for now. Even I need to relax every now and then.”
“Well you deserve a little break, that’s for sure.” Out of the corner of my eye I could see Katnip and Scratchy struggling with a Wartortle who made Kirei seem positively sober. Maybe letting Beckham out of my sight had been a bad idea. But then again, what good would my influence have done? Pokémon were sentient beings, after all, and they had just as many little idiosyncrasies as human beings. As the trainer I could help overcome their flaws - that was a trainer’s whole purpose in my opinion - but what if they didn’t really want to be helped? It was hard work, that was for sure. Owner, breadwinner, best friend and landlord all rolled into one. Yet a trainer’s life was the only life I could really envision for myself. Even if my idea of a trainer was several steps removed from the more conventional image. “Anyway, I’d best be off now, I’m getting pretty tired. Thanks for a great party.” Hurriedly I moved over to help my pokémon deal with the staggering Wartortle, who was slurring some ridiculous nonsense that I could only half guess at, the fog clouding my own brain not exactly helping matters. We probably made quite a pathetic sight, truth be told, a mad rabble in various states of disarray. But to be honest I didn’t really care. Let others think what they wanted. Because maybe we weren’t the most orthodox team on the planet, but we got along. We would always be the best of friends. And wasn’t that really what pokémon training was all about?

Lady Vulpix
29th January 2003, 04:45 PM
That was an excellent story, Ade! Take 22 stamps! ¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢
Yes, Pearl and I would definitely get on very well. I'd thought about that many times. :) And Milliardo is getting... funny! But don't let him know that I said that. ;) Please keep writing like that and bringing life to the Battle Range!
By the way... do you think Megan and Easter are related? I think they have a lot in common.

DarkPrince, that was a good story, but I'm afraid it was a bit too late. Time extensions expire when the scenario changes twice. Since you must have put your effort in writing a good battle and succeeded at it, you'll be allowed to keep the levels gained in that battle and include it in your story as something that actually happened, but you will get no stamps for it.

Ryan, sorry if I sounded too rude. I've never listened to that song, or the band for that matter. But if a song is called pu$sytown and it really is about what it suggests... well, I don't imagine how it could be good. Sorry, I didn't mean to offend you.
Congratulations on getting a paid job!! I hope you can enjoy it and everything goes well for you.
By the way... are you planning to post a story for the current scenario, or the previous one? I know we've both been posting our newsflashes here, but this topic does have another purpose, you know. ;)

Knight of Time
29th January 2003, 05:55 PM

I have a couple of questions I'd like answered please.

1. Regarding the third option in the Winter Games scenario (course), is this some sort of race?

2. Call me crazy for asking about this, but is a person not allowed to ask for a time extension for more than one scenario (e.g. the current one, and a future one)?

Thank you.

Last Exile
29th January 2003, 07:01 PM
1. It's meant to be a mimic of the cross country event in the Winter Olympics IRL. Except this is shorter.

2. No, I think you can ask for an extension as required.

I'm onto it, Gabi. Summer here does get treacherous eventually. What with the out of control bushfires in 3 states. Canberra had 400 homes destroyed 2 weeks ago. But I'm getting into the swing again. I have been SPAMmish lately, so I'd better cut it out and get something compiled. ;)

Lady Vulpix
30th January 2003, 07:39 AM
Well, DP, I guess you can ask for another extension if you see you can't make it, but be careful with that. The longer you take to post for an old scenario, the harder it will be for you to catch up. Sometimes it's better to miss one scenario and catch up with the current one, as I've done a few times.

Oh, I'm sorry to hear that, Ryan! Summer is annoyingly hot here, but fortunately I haven't heard of any fires caused by it. Although there are often unnaturally caused fires in ecological reservations. :( Well, I look forward to reading your next story.

Last Exile
5th February 2003, 05:33 AM
Okay. Here's the proof I wasn't lying. Part 1 of my compilation for the Christmas scenario. Part 2 to come soon.

PS. I wrote a fair bit into Tara's compilation for Part 1. Part 2 will write into Gabi, Tara and Amy's compilations.

PSS. No offense about the music ting, Tara! ;) But it was kinda coming after the thing with The Vines! :D Hope you're well!

PSSS. Hope this doesn't offend Christmas lovers

I hate Christmas. It’s as simple as that. There are certain days of the year I can’t stand. My birthday for one. Everyone always makes a big fuss, takes me into a setting which is the last place I wanna be in and I rarely get the gifts I want. I guess the thought counts, but what really annoys me is that despite my presence on this planet for twenty-one years, they’ve done sweet bugger all to figure out what kind of person I am. They simply couldn’t care less. And that ****ing hurts. Not to the points of tears, I don’t cry. I haven’t cried for a very, very long time. I’ve been moved to very slight wateriness by cartoons, music and the odd movie, but no tears. Does that make me worse as I person? Frankly, I don’t care what the answer is to that question. I am who I am. Flaws define a person as much as their strengths do. Take me or leave me. That’s the pact I have with everyone.
That’s not the reason I hate Christmas though. Wait, that’s a lie. Okay, a partial lie maybe. Part of it’s because my family is about as close as the North and South pole. No one really gets along with anyone. Conversation is forced and has about as much truth in it as Richard Nixon. So forgive me if I don’t believe in the concept of family too much. I wish my father was dead, I wish my youngest aunt would grow a brain, I wish my uncles learned the value about caring for others. And I wish my mother wasn’t the most cynical person on the planet.
I care about others. Sure, I’m not perfect. But I do give a damn about others. I’m not into the once-a-week meets, the short late night calls and the quick lunches. You learn **** about a person that way. It’s almost like a one night stand. I want to know more about the people I give I damn about. I wish someone else would feel the same way. I have way too many lonely days and nights. After all my time on this planet, I don’t know what the hell a ‘good friend’ is. Someone to rely on, someone to trust, someone who gives a damn about you. I can’t name one person like that. Not one.
Until I joined the Dragon Tamers. They gave a damn. Gabi most of all. She cared about who I was. People that knew me for years took about as much notice as they would give a stranger. Within five minutes, Gabi considered me a friend. A true friend. And that meant something. It really meant something.
Yeah, I like friends. I care about others. But don’t expect me to be too crash hot about myself. And you should definitely not expect me to like Christmas.

“Ohhh, jingle bells, jingle bells! Jingle all the way...”
“Shut up, Kasey! You know I hate Christmas carols!”
Kasey retorted with a start, feeling crushed. “Hey, that hurt. Aren’t we supposed to get into the spirit of the season?”
I swore I could feel a migrane coming on. “Ergh! Now I know why they call this the silly season. Even you’re getting silly.”
“That isn’t fair! Take it back now.”
Reznor groaned for the umpteenth time. “Listen, Kasey. We told you a million times before. Ryan doesn’t like Chirstmas! Alright?! So no carols, no get-up, no nothing!”
“And if I do?” she fired back defiantly, her antenna bouncing back and forth as if she was enjoying winding people up.
“I’ll roast your carcass.”
Kasey ruffled her neck leaves and sneered. “You know, if I was the Charizard and you were the Meganium, you wouldn’t be feeling so cocky right now.”
“Well, you’re not. And I don’t want to roast your carcass, okay? We just want some peace and quiet, alright? Christmas is an overblown occasion. So until we hit the Christmas party, just cut the innuendo. We’re not in the mood.”
“Yeah,” replied Beck in a trance-like tone. “Bad karma. We need some flow here. Maybe a group hug would help.”
Kasey smirked. “Thanks, but I’m worried that Reznor’s tail will roast my butt.”
Shirley snorted indignantly. “Hey, I take offense to that!”
“I wasn’t referring to you, Shirley. Your flames are cool.”
“Can we cut the slagging here?” I spat sharply. “Just cut it out.”
“Say,” commented Yorke, his sleek purple fur waving like the ocean, “can anyone hear that rumbling sound?”
“Yeah,” agreed, Kasey, anger flooding away from her face as if in response to Sandy’s fur. “And it’s kinda annoying.”
“It’s getting louder too,” growled Shirley, flapping her creamy white wings in fury.
“It sounds like pop music,” whispered Maynard eerily, his ethereal body rippling like a rock pool. “I hate pop music.”
“You and me both, Maynard,” I agreed heartily. “Except that there are two noises.”
“The other one sounds like metal. Weak metal.”
“This is ridiculous. Maynard, find out what the **** is going on around here.”
Maynard flipped over keenly before hovering off. “Will do.”
“Why didn’t you ask me?” whined Reznor. “I can settle disputes big time!”
“Yeah, as long as you don’t roast the perpetrators to ashes first.”
Kasey snorted with laughter and collapsed to the floor.
“Aw, not you too!” sneered Reznor, her eyes with looks that could kill. “Can we go at least five minutes without referring to my flaming flatulence back at the picnic?”
Shirley was dying to give a response but she never the chance. The distinct sound of breaking glass filled the air and made us jump with a start. I had the sinking feeling that I was not going like finding out the reason why the sound of breaking glass had filled the room.
Maynard emerged with a smug look on his face. “There! That ought to make them shut up, all right!”
I was really about to blow it. My hands were twitching, my eyebrows were slanted down and my teeth were gritted. “Maynard, what the hell did you just do?”
“Ah, some stupid Pokemon were having a bloody war as to who could listen to their music the loudest so I threw a pot plant through their window to shut them up.”
“You threw a pot plant?!” growled Kasey. Maynard should have known better than to offend Kasey’s affinity with nature. Then again, what did Maynard have to fear. He was a ghost after all.
“They were pansies!” he blurted in defense.
Obviously the ploy worked because Kasey pressed the issue no further. “Good. I hate pansies. Pansies suck. They’re a weak plant.”
“I should’ve known better to let a jester like you go and settle that dispute, Maynard. I forgot what a joker a Gastly can be.”
Maynard smirked slyly. “Hey, want can I say? It’s in my blood!”
“Except that you have no blood,” said Beck.
“Don’t remind me.”
“And just how did you manage to pick up the pot plant if you have no actual physical being?”
“Levitation through psychic powers.”
“Well,” Beck continued, “at least you did solve something. That pathetic teen materialistic, capitalist, sexist, corny pop music is off.”
“Except that someone is still blaring bloody weak metal!” growled Reznor. “Can’t they play something decent hard stuff like the Nine Inch Nails?!”
“If they did that at that volume, the whole neighbourhood would be after their hides,” explained Beck. “If it isn’t herbal tea-sipping crap, people have a problem with it.”
“Who the hell is letting their Pokemon have free reign unsupervised anyway?” I hissed through clenched teeth. “They are really beginning to tick me off, I swear.”
“Looks like it’s Tara,” giggled Maynard. “And don’t you feel stupid now!”
“Great. Someone whose sorry carcass I can’t kick.” I wiped my slightly worn forehead and sighed heavily. “Can someone put on something decent before I storm over to Tara’s room and say something I’ll regret?”
“Play The Vines!” jeered Kasey. “They rule!”
“Aw, you only like them because of their name, anyway!” retorted Shirley. “The Vines rock, cause they’re Aussie and they’re cool, but Tara think that they’re a bunch of pot-heads and losers. We’ll have an all out war if we dare put them on.”
“Couldn’t Fly TV play something like the Zephyr Song by the Red Hot Chili Peppers or something?” suggested Yorke. “Now there’s a nice song.”
“Except Ryan would then give us his improvised dirty lyrics version,” joked Kasey, causing the rest of the group to fall over, their sides splitting with laughter.
“Very funny, guys,” I groaned. “Thanks for not taking into account the fact the th Red Hot Chili Peppers rarely don’t have dirty lyrics anyway.” My headache had built up to the size of a mountain. But I wasn’t in the mood for taking aspirin. Aspirin promotes blood clotting and eats away at your stomach and kidneys, which wasn’t something I was keen to endure right now. “But Sandy has a point. Play something softish but cool at a high volume. And recent, too”
“Pearl Jam?” suggested Yorke in yet another of his endless moments of brilliance.
“Pearl Jam aren’t soft!” growled Reznor. “Pearl Jam rock! They saved grunge after Nirvana self-destructed. Their 90’s stuff is some damn hard stuff, man!”
“I think Sandy was referring to the Riot Act album and meant no offense,” replied Beck, smoothing over a steamy situation. “And Ryan did say something recent.”
“Is cool, that album is good.”
“What track?” inquired Maynard. “Not all of them are soft.”
“The opening one,” I whispered as if half-asleep. “I wanna lose myself in the rolling waves. Get some rest, guys. We’re so bloody pent-up we’re ready to tear each other apart. We’ve gotta do something constructive for once. This complacency is eating us up.”
“Got anything in mind?” asked Shirley. She was always sharp to spot something.
“I have something, but that’s to discuss later. Just play the music. And put a few tracks on repeat. I want people to be getting irritated back.”
Everyone smirked as all the stress and the vengeance was released into the atmosphere. Everyone collapsed onto separate beds or seats, laying in the most absurd of positions as the soft oceanic riffs of ‘Can’t Keep’ permeated the room. Its beauty is in its ethereal nature are Eddie Vedder sudden change of manner. It’s a song about life and eternity and all the insanity that comes with it. Somehow Eddie manages to bring some order and normality to it. It’s incredibly soothing and an absolute gem to lose yourself in. That’s what I like doing: losing myself in stuff like this.

Pearl Jam – Can’t Keep

I wanna shake
I wanna wind down
I wanna leave
This mind and shout

I’ve lived
All this life
Like an ocean
In disguise
I don’t live for
You can’t keep
Me here

I wanna race
With the sundown
I want a last breath
I don’t let out

Every being
The bad feelings
It’s just me
I won’t wait
For answers
You can’t keep me here

I wanna rise
And say goodnight
Wanna take
A look on the other side

I’ve lived
All these lives
It’s been wonder
Full at night
I will live for
You can’t keep
Me here

“Can someone close the window, for crying out loud?”
Kasey quickly whipped her neck vines out and slammed them shut in one motion. “You have to admit, I have killer reflexes.”
“As if we would dare say otherwise, my dear,” joked Yorke.
“I really don’t like winter,” groaned Kasey, her neck leaves shaking like they were in a gale. “So cold. I’d swear I’d wilt instantly out there.”
“Snow’s not that bad though,” commented Shirley. “It’s nice and fluffy, plus you can throw it around.”
“Except that you’d melt it before you even touch it.”
“Don’t remind me.”
“Damn, I’m thirsty,” mumbled Reznor. “Anyone got any drinks?”
Yorke was beside himself. “What’s in this hotel room? Soft drinks, booze?! What ever happened to the purity and goodness of water?!”
“No water?!” I screamed. “You’ve got to be kidding!”
“Alright,” groaned Reznor, picking herself up. “I’ll go melt the snow out there and put it to some use."
“Try not to boil it all off!” replied Beck.
“Shirley, we can use out tail flames to do this without losing it. Could you get some pails and help me out before Beck cops it?”
“No problem.”
Within a minute there was sweet, pure, refreshing water for everyone. The type that chills your lungs and clears your brain.
I managed a half-smile. "Ah, that's the stuff!"

Lady Vulpix
5th February 2003, 10:02 AM
That was nice, Ryan! Take 4 stamps! ¢¢¢¢
I can't wait to read part 2. :) Though I don't think you and Tara should get so worked up about music. It's not meant to hurt anyone, after all, is it? By the way, nice song!

5th February 2003, 02:02 PM
Ack, I'm kind of stuck, but I want to show that I've been working on the scenario, so I'll post the Prologue:


“I… hate… winter…” I muttered through chattering teeth. Switchblade felt the same way. He didn’t like cold weather at all; it froze his circuits and made him sluggish, something that an energetic Porygon like him would never feel comfortable with. This was the one thing in the known universe that could ever make him unhappy. Once he got someplace warm, though, he’d quickly cheer up. I, on the other hand, would remain for a while in a rather bad mood; or just really tired, depending on the circumstances.

Currently, we trudged through hard, knee-deep snow; once in a while, a frozen wind, with terrible chill in its breath, would blow by; then Switchblade and I would shiver and curse. Evenstar was fine, though. This barren winter wasteland was not physically distressing to her. She was a Sneasel, after all. Still, she would have preferred a prettier scenery.

What we had come here for, though, could well prove to be worth the torment and the suffering. The Dragon Tamers were invited to the Winter Games: a contest of strength, wit, heart, and most of all, spirit.

Dragon Tamers were allowed to enter their pokémon in three distinct contests: the ice-skating race, the course, and the ice hockey game.

I already knew that Evenstar would be perfect for the skating. She had everything she needed to win: her slender agility, her feline grace, her comfort on ice, and her clever rationality.

For the course, on the other hand, Switchblade would fare remarkably well, though he hated cold weather. His eagerness to enter the event ruled out all intense discomfort that he felt towards this harsh environment. Switchblade was easily my strongest pokémon in battle, and he could move quickly and easily over the freezing, watery course. His sheer courage and determination, if nothing else, would pull him through.

There was only one thing that worried me: Nimrodel, my Lapras. In order to participate in the ice hockey game, we needed three players. I only had three Pokémon accompanying me: Switchblade, Evenstar, and Nimrodel. I didn’t doubt Nimrodel’s ability to play in the game, but she tended to avoid extreme competition. She was the type that could not and would not feel ill will towards others, and she usually refused to oppose anyone. I fingered Nimrodel’s pokéball.

“Well, here goes,” I whispered. “Come out, Nimrodel.”

A sweet sigh of sorrowful joy came out from the white light, like the silvery notes of a rushing waterfall. As the glorious radiance faded slowly, a soft, azure outline of a majestic leviathan traced itself along the glow. There was Nimrodel, towering with gentle beauty above the pure white snow.

I’ll play, said Nimrodel.

I was surprised. “Really?”

You need three members, and without me, you’ll have only two. If I refused to play, I’d be selfish to Switchblade and Evenstar. Besides, I won’t be required to be violent in an ice hockey game. I can tend to the goal.

“That’s great, Nimrodel. Thank you.”

It’s quite all right.

At that moment, the announcer’s voice blared from the loud speakers. “FINAL CALL FOR REGISTRATION TO THE ICE SKATING RACE!” he cried.

“Uh, oh. Evenstar, let’s go!” I yelled, skidding hurriedly across the ice and tripping as I went, but Evenstar was already waiting at the registration booth.

Lady Vulpix
5th February 2003, 05:19 PM
Nice intro, Karin! Take 3 stamps! I hope you get to finish your story soon. ¢¢¢

5th February 2003, 11:31 PM
Oy! I'm offended mate! the only reason I dont listen to stuff like Nine inch nails and tool and other heavy bands like that is because most of their stuff is really slow yet heavy and bores me. I swear its like slow and heavy and not as hyper active as I like. I prefer punk stuff anyway and I need a good beat and loud rock, and i find nine inch nails, tool and all those other weird heavy bands to bore me to bits. ^_^

And im offended. Papa roach rule.


But you probably are pissed with me for saying that Craig Nicholls was yeah... ^_^ u know what i said... ^_^

I got you seriously pissed off XD i wonder if i saved that.


AntiAsh Superstar
6th February 2003, 07:24 AM
NIN boring? Now I'M offended! :o Actually I'm not, I'm too busy trying to remove Millencolin's 'Penguins and Polarbears' from my head atm! (and trying to figure out how I'm gonna go see them seeing as the trains are playing up when they're doing a gig in Manchester... hehe, if everyone else can do off-topic rants then so can I!!!!) Umm... actually, I'm posting to get further clarification on the third event in the scenario, some of us are too busy hunting down obscure underground rock acts and stalking certain Misc mods to pay much attention to sports! XD Am I right in thinking what happens in that one is a race over the snow and water, followed by a spot of archery-style target practise, followed by racing over the ice and then a battle the instant both competitors reach a certain point? I assume then that the battle is the decider, but the advantage will go to whoever reaches the battle spot first as they'll have had more time to rest. Umm, yeah, do tell me if I've misunderstood, I just don't know much about these winter olympic things and I wanna be certain before I write anything about the competition. ^_^;;;

Lady Vulpix
6th February 2003, 08:48 AM
Hmm... I think it was a bit ambiguous too, but your idea sounds interesting. Ryan?

As for the music... doesn't anyone like softer music with positive lyrics and melodies that draw you (or at least me) into singing along? I certainly do.

Last Exile
6th February 2003, 06:23 PM
Steady on, Tara! Geez, I knew you'd rise to the bait! :D They're okay, but I've heard better. NIN slow? Which album were you listening too? Okay, The Fragile is slow but The Downward Spiral is fast! Way fast! Well, most of it. Hey I went through the punk phase too. We'll see how long it lasts for you. Just don't pay out Radiohead or there might be trouble! ;)

As for your question Ade, you good taste legend you, it's meant to be like the cross country events in the IRL Winter Olympics. You run a kilometre of snow, then hit five targets with your Pokemon's projectile attacks, then battle on the ice and sprint your way home! That's the idea.

As for your question Gabi, that depends on your definition. If you mean pop, forget it! If you mean stuff like Jeff Buckley or Coldplay, yes! ;)

Aipom Of Doom
7th February 2003, 12:20 PM
I want a time extension, please... I know that I want to compete in all three events, and I also know that each one will probably become a rather lenthy story... So I doubt I'll get done in the time limit.

Anyway, how does the cross-country thing work? It seems like a race, except that at the end you have to wait for your opponent to get there so you can battle... So how do you determine who wins?

7th February 2003, 10:30 PM
just wondering, with the games, can your pokemon compete in all three, or only two? like, can you have pokemon in the Ice Hockey, and the race, or Hockey, and the cross country, or cross country and the race? just wondering.

Last Exile
8th February 2003, 05:35 AM
You can compete in all three. But a single Pokemon can only oarticipate in a maximum of two events. The idea is to use several instead of using the same old, same old. ;)

10th February 2003, 09:44 PM
may I ask when the next scenario is going to be?

Last Exile
10th February 2003, 11:06 PM
Well, the Winter Games Scenario is up and no one's done anything for that yet. It's a few pages back.

Lady Vulpix
11th February 2003, 09:33 AM
In a long time, apparently, since no one has posted for this one yet. I will post, of course, but in order to know what to write I'd have to see the end of Ryan's last story first.

Last Exile
12th February 2003, 09:30 PM
M'Lady, I finished my new chapter of WDC last night. i'm ready to begin work on the conclusion to my chrsitmas thingie. Expect something in the next few days, depending on how much work I have to do around the house.

Lady Vulpix
13th February 2003, 05:25 PM
Thanks, Ryan, I'll check it out.
By the way, I had a final today and I got a 10! (Top mark). I guess writing a little before studying IS a good method after all. :D
And now that I'm done with that final... I can write a LOT! So expect a new chapter of my fic soon, and I'll write something for this scenario as soon as I can.

13th February 2003, 09:30 PM
:wave: Whee. Part Two of Four.

Evenstar the female Sneasel's POV:

The man at the registration counter had a strange look on his face. Whenever he looked at my trainer, he seemed almost... angry. She didn't seem to notice, though; her brain was reduced to a torpid state because of the cold. I hoped she could sit down somewhere warm and get a cup of hot chocolate soon. I knew she hated the cold. Switchblade was the same way.

I felt uneasy. The guy had handed me my skates, and I had put them on, but something was extremely wrong. I could sense it. The skates didn't seem to have a problem with them, but...

"Evenstar, I'm going in that building, okay?" I heard my trainer say, wearily. "I'll be watching you through the big glass window."

I nodded hesitantly. Again, I cast a surreptitious glance at the man. He was rather corpulent, and had a thick beard. But there was something wrong with his face. It just didn't look... natural... I shrugged and got into my position. The Swinub I was supposed to race looked strange, too. In its eyes were the looks of a crazed pokémon, driven to a mad frenzy as if some evil spirit had possessed it. I tried to shake off the unease that weighed heavily on my heart, but I could not.

A loud, shrill squeak came shrieking out from the nearby microphone. "ON YOUR MARK! GET SET! GO!"

We were off.

Evenstar the female Sneasel LV9 vs. Swinub LV10

Immediately, the ground began to roar as it erupted in violent earth tremors. Cracks appeared on the breaking ice. I flinched as some of the upturned debris stung my eyes. It was difficult to maintain my balance.

Things went from bad to worse. My immediate area became clouded with a dense fog. Even with my sharpened eyesight, it was difficult to see through. It was then that I slipped...

Slowly, the fog began to lift. I pushed myself up, glad for the tremors to have stopped. Something sizzled at my feet. I examined the blades of my skates, each moment becoming more and more horrified.

The sickening noise was the sound of acid eating away at the silver blades. I dug the blades into the ground, scraping away the final remnants of the horrible venom. Thankfully, the Toxic puddle upon which I had slipped nearby had already sunk deep into the ice floor. I did not have to want to have to deal with that nasty substance. A brown streak whizzed past me; the Swinub was on its second lap. I realized that I had no time to lose. With a cry, I bolted forward, moving as lightly as possible on the ice as the broken and uneven cracks allowed. Here and there, the Swinub had kicked up bits of dirt onto the ice to slow my progress.

The next few laps were a grueling process; each time I discovered more traps and cheap tactics that the Swinub played. The dirt-covered ice had begun to melt, and in places, the track had become dangerously slippery. The Swinub continued to enshroud some areas in dark fog, especially where it had broken tiny fissures in the ground where I could trip and injure myself on the sharp, jagged edges of the ice. The constant attack was exhausting. I did, however, regain lost ground, inch by inch, as I got used to the Swinub's trickery; it could not match my speed and agility. Finally, when I was drawing to the end of my eighth lap, I caught up to the Swinub.

Something at the sidelines attracted my attention then. When I turned to look, my heart skipped a beat. There was that strange registration man again! There was something in his hand: some type of remote control. It appeared fascinatingly complex with its many buttons and flashing lights. Yet, it fitted the palm of his hand. It seemed as if he didn't want the contraption to be seen. He had painted it the color of his skin. Then I realized why.

I remembered earlier that the man had not been at the registration booth when I had arrived there. I had seen him making his way stealthily through the snow, appearing from out of the bushes. When he had noticed me waiting there, he wasn't pleased, though I hadn't known why.

On my seventh lap, when I had pulled within sight range of the Swinub, I had noticed a small, glowing ring attached to its nose. I had previously believed that it was just there for style, but now I knew its purpose.

No wonder the Swinub was acting so dishonorably! I found it difficult to believe that a pokémon would be such a terrible cheater of its own accord. That man, whoever he was, was out to get at my trainer through any possible means. I remembered that he had looked angry with her, and hateful. Perhaps she had met him somewhere? What if she had done something that had made him crave revenge? I wished I could ask Switchblade about it, but he, along with Nimrodel, who had gone back into her pokéball, had followed my trainer inside the building. I would have to wait until the race was over.

While I had spent time piecing things together, the Swinub had gotten farther ahead of me. I found myself having to struggle through a full blown Blizzard. The sharp, icy shards cut through my skin; the powerful gale lashed at my face. Still, I had to make an effort to catch up. We each had just passed the lap mark for the ninth time. There was only one lap remaining.

With the last of my remaining energy, I sprinted - or rather, glided - rapidly across the ice, desperately trying to pull ahead of the Swinub. I drew up beside it. The finish line was in sight. I knew I would be able to beat it if I maintained my pace.

Without warning, the Swinub swerved aside and rammed into me forcefully, sending me crashing into the ground. I cried out in exasperation. I was so close!

Still, I had to try. I scrambled to my feet, then made a wild dash for the end, avoiding a particularly wide crack in the ice that was made earlier. The Swinub was only meters away from the finish line...

Ahead of the Swinub was a patch of very muddy snow. I stopped breathing. Dirty snow is extremely dangerous. The dark coloration prevents it from showing the slick, shiny surface of melting ice, and therefore goes unnoticed. But it is when ice is mixed with dark debris like that when it melts faster...

Just in time, I managed to leap over the slippery ice, saving myself from a terrible fall. The Swinub was not so lucky. Travelling at such a high velocity when it hit that particular section, the Swinub was thrown violently off course. I saw it trip over broken ice, go hurtling through the air, and smash into a nearby tree. The ring in its nose broke into two. The man at the registration booth uttered a surprised yell.

I heard the Swinub groan pitifully. By the way it cried out weakly for help, I knew that it was in great pain. I couldn't stand seeing a fellow pokémon suffer because of a human's unkindness.

Abandoning the race, I turned back to where the Swinub lay. Some of its bones were broken and dislodged. I hissed. Why did some humans have to be so cruel?

Gently, I held the Swinub in my arms, then made my way slowly to the finish line, where my trainer was waiting in the lodge. I crossed the finish line, but I felt no joy or satisfaction. I made my way past the surprised manager and went directly into the lodge.

Evenstar won!
Evenstar grew to LV10!
Evenstar learned Shadow Ball as her free TM!


"Evenstar, are you all right?" I cried. "I saw that Swinub attacking you, but they wouldn't let me out of the lodge!"

I ran to Evenstar, picked up the injured Swinub, and handed it to a nearby attendant, who rushed it to the Pokémon Center next door. I saw that Evenstar was worried about the poor thing.

"They'll have it healed in no time," I assured her. Evenstar wasn't convinced, and I couldn't blame her. I didn't sound very convincing.

Do you recognize that man? she asked me, pointing at the fat guy at the registration booth. When Evenstar explained to me what had happened, my eyes widened.

I was puzzled. I was studying the face of the man in question, when a flicker of recognition flashed in my mind.

"Switchblade," I called in an urgent tone, "is that who I think it is?"

Switchblade took one look at the man and beeped with alarm. That's the wanted criminal with the Porygon2! he cried.

I frowned. "I thought so. Switchblade, we defeated Mike and his Porygon2 the last time, but I don't think it's safe to confront him again. Let's call the police."

I don't think that will be necessary, Evenstar said.

I gasped. Mike was gone.

14th February 2003, 04:14 PM
This is a starting story, it has no point or scenario, or does it deserve stamps. I am not looking for anything, but this is just to get me into the DT world, and then do my scenarios from there.

“Mourn the Death, of your bloody valentine”-Good Charlotte’s Bloody Valentine

He listened to that song for what seemed like infinity. The CD player whirled around the songs like a blur, but the only one that stood out was that one. He smiled, a soft pleasant smile, a mixture of utter sadness and wonderful bliss. For a second, he looked more like his fifteen years, instead of a hardened man. Then the smile faded, and his eyes returned to coldly staring out from the shelter of the doorway, out where it rained like the gods themselves where weeping.

He sighed, feeling the shimmer of spray as rainwater splashed so close to his dry spot. He was beyond caring though, the only reason he even still stood here was the fact…The fact that this is where it had happened. And he just could not leave yet. Not until this wretched day was over at least.

It was supposedly Saint Valentine’s day. But he did not feel love. He had just been dumped, and she had not even given an explanation. He looked down at the crumpled and wet red roses at his feet, they looked like blood and ichor from where he was sitting, listening to sad songs, the whir of the player and the pulsation of the rain.

He pushed a strand of jade green hair back behind his ears, pushing his hand against the cord to his ear buds. Sighing, he plucked them out, pulling them down and placing them inside his backpack, he leaned against the wall, sliding down to a sitting position, and just stared out at the water, at the purification of earth.

He laughed silently, watching as a lone pigeon flapped down, to wet and weak to do anything. He motioned to it, and it waddled over, hiding up against him. He smiled again, looking for the world younger, yet still hardened by hate and misery.

“Wind Spirits…That’s what grandmother called you. I wonder why” He felt foolish talking to the bird, but noticed that it seemed to be paying attention to him. It hopped up on his knee, and stared him in the eye. He felt a bit nervous, seeing as these where his only good pair of pants. But slowly relaxed.

“Not in the mood to talk?” He asked sarcastically. And the bird only cooed, flapping off, it plucked off the rose petals, placing them down into the rain, where they got soaked more quickly, melting away into almost nothingness.

He stood up, watching the bird, his black pants and dark green blazer strikingly different to the bright blue door behind him. He knew his light jade green hair was weird, but so was most other stuff he was into. He stared at the bird; glittering indigo eyes met with cold ethereal black ones.

He watched for awhile, the rain pressing against him like a welcomed lover. He watched the bird as it plucked the final petal, and placed it. The flowers had become like blood red soup, thick and dark with water splashing on them.

“Hmmmm If this was Anime, I could fall into this circle, and I would be taken away into a different-world. Maybe like Pokemon. Or maybe even some strange new world” He shook his head, but picked up his backpack, and looked around anyway.

“Ah, what the hell…No one is around, it will be fun to pretend” With that, he leaped up, and let his body fly into the rain, not very far, but far enough so that the wind whipped around him, rain flowing as he laughed, expecting to touch ground.

But, there was no ground to speak of. When he looked around, there was simply the rain, the wind, and nothing else. He looked up, and down, and saw just the same mixture of water and sky. He felt his CD player turn off and on, and his backpack lift up.

“What the frick?” He called out, but no sound came, just the soft gentle cooing of the pigeon so far above, or below of him. He felt like laughing, or crying. As if his day could not have gotten any worse; he was no going insane. Completely and totally out of his mind.

He felt the world slow down, so slow that he could see every single drop of rain, like crystals dancing above and around him. The wind took shape, showing him naked women and men, giant monsters, floating cities and strange forests and mountains.

He had the random thought of the new matrix movie. And then the world was in motion again. He closed his eyes, willing himself not to try screaming again as the rain became like stone against his body, beating hard. While the wind burned like flame.

When he opened his eyes however, he was shocked by what he was seeing. By what he was standing next to.

The girl smiled at him. She was dressed in a blue dress, long and looking as if it was made from velvet. She wore a brooch, and next to her was a Strange Pig-like creature that he barely remembered as Sutippu. Drowzee to those in America. He looked at the girl, her long red curly hair bouncing as she walked forward, the pokemon following behind her, looking at him with its strange psychic eyes.

“Konnichiwa…O-Genki desu ka” She spoke japanese, then laughed, tittering like silver and gold as it is poured into a bank vault. she extended one slightly tanned land, perfectly manicured nails that glimmered with gold polish.

“Sumimasen…You do not know Nihongo. I am a friend. I am wondering how you are feeling” She spoke softly, slowly. Trying to remember words in english that she had not used in many a year. He nodded slowly, feeling around he noticed nothing was broken. Then noticed his backpack had changed.

It was now smaller, more compact, and a deep dark green, His blazer had been transformed into a green shirt, soft and comfortable against his sweaty and quickly raising chest. His black pants had remained the same, but they now had complex designs flowing down them, in greens and blues.

“Uh…Where am I?” He asked, not knowing if he had gone insane, fallen asleep, or was really thinking the truth. He stared at the girl who only smiled, waving her hand, He saw the pigeon he had seen before fly to her hand, and she laughed again.

“You have been summoned. By the powers of nature, to help fight in this world. You are filled with emotion, something that many trainers are not anymore. We have offered you Sutippu here-“ she nodded to the Monsuraa, who smiled and gave a soft purr of pleasure. “as a beginning Fighter. It is a female, and quite weak, only LV5. But it will serve you well” She smiled again, letting loose the pigeon, and took his hand, raising him up.

“You see…The world is changing again. We need fighters. And since you still believe in majik and all it obtains, your perfect for the job” She nodded, and muttered something in a tongue that he did not understand. The Sutippu coming forward, almost waddling in anxiousness.

“Uh…I thank you. But are you sure I am not dreaming?” He pinched himself, and felt the shock of pain. Then patted the Sutippu on its head, the soft fur moving underneath his touch, the short bristles brushing against him with all-to much realness.

She laughed again, this time so hard that her golden-green eyes closed, letting loose soft tears that marked her skin with pale-trails of wetness. He watched her, feeling more and more emberassed as she giggled, tears flowing down her face.

“For one who has a broken heart, you still ask the strangest questions. Of course this is real.” He winced when she mentioned the broken heart. He still felt miserable about that. And his mind drifted for a second back to his girlfriend. Correction, ex-girlfriend.

“You have no one back home waiting for you…Please, you and Sutippu are needed” She looked at him, and for once he could tell for certain, this was no dream. As she touched him, soft and pleasant hands on his arm, he nodded.

She smiled, and Sutippu gave off a loud shout of pleasure. “You will find food, and 6 capture boro in your backpack. Also a knife in case you get into a fight, and some of the local currency” She nodded, showing him how things worked, and then slipped off her ring.

“if you need help, twist this ring. It should help you. But it cannot be used against the creatures that Sutippu fights. It can only be used against the powers of darkness” She looked at him for a second, then nodded slowly.

“Ja Ne Misa-chan” She giggled and disappeared then, bright violet light surronding her, one minute her being there, then she was gone. He looked dumb-founded, and sat down next to his new companion.

“Well, I guess I am Misagi now. A warrior for the powers of good, Just like any Otaku would want. Except in this one I can really die.” He sighed, looking at Sutippu, then nodded.

“What do you want to be called?” He asked, wondering if Sutippu could talk english, or if that she was just like most pokemon on the TV show, able only to say her own name. Since this was nothing like the TV show, or the manga, more like a fantasy game with these creatures added, he figured she might know.

<I am Kunta> He felt the voice in his mind, a soft pleasant voice that reminded him of Cinnamon and sea waves. Of sparkling amythest gems and spring breezes. He smiled, nodding one last time as he picked up his new pack.

“Then Kunta. We go…To Love”

He stepped out into the brand new world, not knowing what to expect. But knowing that amongst its pathes, where the glories of ancients and mondern times.

Kunta: Female Drowzee LV5
Adopted from the Dragon Tamers Adoption Center.
–attacks (*I need a pokedex to check its attacks! expecially my one allowable bred one*)

Lady Vulpix
15th February 2003, 10:55 AM
That was nice, Karin. It could be the beginning of something interesting. Take 5 stamps! ¢¢¢¢¢

Morpheus_ko_Wadjet, I'll read your intro today. Check here for moves for your Drowzee (http://www.pokemasters.com/pokedex/096.html).

Oh, by the way, I'm writing a fic, so if anyone is interested, you can read it here (http://www.pokemasters.net/forums/showthread.php?s=&threadid=9508).

Lady Vulpix
15th February 2003, 08:14 PM
Misagi? Oh, that explains it! Nice intro! Take 5 stamps and I hope you stay around this time. ¢¢¢¢¢

15th February 2003, 10:04 PM
Pokemon species: Smoochum
Nickname: LadyLuck
Level: 6
Ice Punch(bred-on)

LadyLuck's POV
Me and my trainer, Chris, went to sign-up for the ice-skating competition.
"Are you sure I can do this, Chris?" I asked my trainer.
"Of course you can, L.L., you beat Skye in all of your practices!" He replied.
Skye is a Scyther, not a Swinub. I thought.
Right after we signed up, I heard the loud-speaker.
"LadyLuck the Smoochum and DixieChix the Swinub, report to the Ice Rink!" the loud-speaker boomed. Every bone in my body shook. Me and Chris ran to the rink. When we got there, we saw the Swinub and her owner. We stood next to them. The battle started.

LadyLuck vs. DixieChix

I waited at the starting line for the starting bell to ring. Finally it boomed out loud. "LadyLuck! Pound DixieChix!" Chris ordered me. I tried, but it missed. But right after I missed, the Swinub used Powder Snow. I yelled to Chris. "Chris! DixieChix is Level 10!" I knew that because me and Chris researched other pokemon every once in a while. Chris must not have heard me because right after I yelled to him he ordered me to Lick DixieChix. Eww...... I thought. but an order in an order... I skated a foot forward and licked the Swinub with all I had. DixieChix started shaking. Then I started thinking about the Lick attack. We had looked it up on the Pokedex. The attack Lick has a 30% chance of paralyzing the opponent. Then I noticed I had crossed the finish line! I felt a funny sensation in my whole body. Then Chris checked his Pokedex. LadyLuck is now level 7!

Pokemon species: Smoochum
Nickname: LadyLuck
Level: 7
Ice Punch(bred-on)

Lady Vulpix
16th February 2003, 09:39 AM
Not bad for a first post, Parsec's politoed. Take 2 stamps! ¢¢

16th February 2003, 11:45 AM
Um, two things.

1) Smoochum doesn't get Surf as a bred-on move... In RBYGSC, Smoochum and Jynx never learn Surf by HM or in breeding.
2) Parsec's Politoed, your Smoochum should only have gained one level for crossing the finish line, I believe, and not two.

Lady Vulpix
16th February 2003, 12:22 PM
Hm? Ouch! Karin, you're right. I hadn't noticed. Take a ¢ for your help.
Parsec's Politoed, your stamps are on hold until you fix your battle.

Aipom Of Doom
16th February 2003, 12:35 PM
Originally posted by Lady Vulpix
Hm? Ouch! Karin, you're right. I hadn't noticed. Take a ¢ for your help.
Parsec's Politoed, your stamps are on hold until you fix your battle.

Also, I noticed that you gave your Scyther Fly as a bred-on move, Parsec's Politoed... That's illegal too =/

16th February 2003, 01:21 PM
The only thing I don't agree with is the levels earned. My Smoochum was at level 6, and the Swinub was Level 10. Although, I will check for the bred-on moves that Smoochum and Scyther can learn and then edit my battle and sig.

Lady Vulpix
16th February 2003, 01:56 PM
Check the scenario. Every pokemon gains 1 level from each competition they participate in. So your Smoochum is now level 7.

The Pet Keeper
16th February 2003, 05:49 PM
(how long will the current scenario stay up?)

Lady Vulpix
16th February 2003, 07:01 PM
Ok, Parsec's Politoed! You can have your stamps now.
Anna, the scenario won't change until someone gets to post a whole story for it. Many of us are either writing or planning to write ours, so it will remain up for a while.

18th February 2003, 01:53 AM
Hello everyone. I would like to ask for a time extinsion thingy for this scenario. I don't know how long this may take me to write =P. I'm going to start writting it now, but it still might take me a while. So thanks.

Lady Vulpix
18th February 2003, 04:22 PM
Ok, Matt. I doubt you'll need it, but you can have it.
Has anyone else noticed the board is having problems? I hope this post comes out below Matt's, where it's supposed to be.

The Pet Keeper
21st February 2003, 01:09 PM
i was free from school so i wrote this, but it doesn't have anything to do with the current scenario

They had spent hours in complete darkness with only their hands to guide themselves with. Just when each one had slowly started to give up their hope (except for Zed who kept on charging up everyone) when Silver squeaked “Look, light!”
“Very funny”, grunted Illusion.
“I can see it too” said Anna with excitement and the whole party stumbled throw the cave and saw how the light became stronger.
”It’s a hole, a way out!” cried Anna and rushed throw the rock tunnel. The tunnel became brighter and turned into a cave. Anna saw a clefable who stared at the yelling human who popped up from nowhere with surprise. Anna just took a fast glimpse at him, she had never seen a real clefable before, but she could only think of the opening.

Soon the entire team was gathered in the opening of the cave; Zed, Illusion, Nemesis, Silver, Anna and Titan. Titan spotted the clefable and loudly barked at him, but the clefable just tenderly jumped over to the angry kabuto, softly slapped her and then he giggling disappeared into the darkness. Titan was just going to rush after the clefable but she was stopped by Illusion.
“Don’t you dare to run back in there”, told Illusion the young kabuto and picked her up. Titan soon forgot the clefable and tangled up mustache of Illusion instead.
“You’ll take her”, Illusion irritably handed the baby kabuto to Anna and then Illusion tried to fix her messed up fuzz with her claws.

The area outside the cave was a huge grass field, surrounded by reddish mountains.
“We are still in the mountains” said Nemesis and pulled Annas sleeve to get attention. “It’s cold too”, Anna nodded to Nemesis. Just as Anna ended her sentence, large snowflakes started to fall from the cloudy sky.
“Awesome” groaned Illusion angrily and gazed at the gray sky.
“Should we try to find food?” suggested Silver and tapped his belly. None had eaten any food for several hours, but they at least had lots of water in shape of snow now.
“Is it possible to find food here?”, Anna turned to Zed; Zed knew all sort of stuff.
“Uh, except for grass, I’ve heard that there is a sort of berries that grows all the year in mountain areas”, Zed scratched his snout and thoughtfully added “but they taste horrible”.
“Food as food”, Anna shrugged and helped Silver who tried to climb up on her shoulders.

They all marched away throw the grass and snow in a line. Illusion had the lead, closely followed by Titan who played with the tip of the kadabras big tail. Silver rode upon the shoulders of Anna, where he was able to see a much longer distance then anyone else of the team. The snow kept on falling and soon covered the ground with a cold, white layer.
“There!” yelled Silver and pointed with one off his short fingers “it looks like a bush!”
Everyone except for Nemesis looked at the place where Silver had pointed. It looked like a huge boulder covered with snow, but since it lay in the middle of a grass field it must been an exceptional large bush.
When they reached the snowy shrub, Anna put her hand into the snow and carefully touched whatever it was under it. She felt a hard surface like a stone, but it felt warm.
“I think it’s just a rock”, muttered Anna and started to wipe off some of the snow. It looked like a rock too; big, bulky and gray. The disappointment fell over the group.
“Stupid, stupid stone”, yelled Silver with anger and kicked the rock with frustration. And the stone moved.
“Whoa, you’re a strong fellow”, Zed said and picked up the upset abra.
“Don’t be silly, there’s no way he can move that rock”, smirked Nemesis and crossed her arms. “At least not with physics”, snorted Illusion at Nemesis, and then the two psychic pokémon furiously glared at each other.
“Time out”, Anna cut the upcoming fight with. Anna started to dig in the snow on the rock. She swept away a big bunch of snow and curiously looked at the gray surface she had revealed. Anna thought it looked like an eyebrow and quietly laughed at herself. Then she found out that a big red eye tiredly watched her. Anna fell backward by chock and landed in the snow, and then the eye closed and the boulder looked like a normal stone again
“That’s no rock” hissed Anna and shake her head with unbelief.
Zed, Illusion and Anna removed the snow rapidly with their hands and Silver helped them too with his ability to create fire. Nemesis just watched with skepticism when her teammate worked, and Titan jumped around the boulder loudly crackling something that sounded like “rock ock” mixed with “ka kabuutooo”.
“It’s a…” started Zed and Illusion ended “rhyhorn? Don’t they live in flocks?”
“She’s wounded” whispered Anna while she inspected a nasty slash upon the rhyhorns back. Nemesis quietly looked at the big creature that being hidden by the snow and muttered something that was impossible to hear. Zed ignored Nemesis and joined Anna.
“Looks like the snow incorrupt an arcanines meal” said Zed.
“Can we…”, Anna bit her lip “do something?”
“We need something too clean to wound with”, smiled Zed sadly. Anna ripped up her backpack and found a bright blue towel in it.
“It still has blood stains from the last time” Zed mumbled as he took the towel from Anna. Nemesis smirked at Illusion; they both remembered perfectly well when a Team Rocket trained sneasel had beaten up Illusion.
Zed melted some snow and dipped the tip of the towel in the water and then he used it to clean the rhyhorns wound. When he was done, he and Anna tried to figure out a way to tie the towel over the injury, but they couldn’t come up with any ideas.
“We have to get her into cover and heat her up”, Anna walked around the rhyhorn; it looked impossible to move.
“We need cover too, I’m freezing” said Illusion. Anna started to push the rhyhorn; it had to walk by itself. “Come on, you have to walk”, Anna pushed harder from behind but with no result. “You’ll die if you don’t”, Anna used all her power to drive the rhyhorn, but she didn’t move. “Why?” yelped Anna. She angrily felt that tears were coming.
The rhyhorn slowly opened her eyes and looked at the little human. “Please, leave me alone” said the rhyhorn with a deep, sleepy voice that reminded of an earthquake.
“Why?” repeated Anna.
“I’ve lost my herd”
“We’ll help you find them!”
“No, there’s no use. They all have been kidnapped, one by one”
“But how..?”
“You should know you’re a human” the rhyhorn said and closed her eyes “now leave me alone”
“You shouldn’t just give up like that”
“You have no idea what it feels like”
“I do” said Silver and went over to the rhyhorn and petted her nose. ”I’ve lost my family too” whispered Silver to the rhyhorn very quietly so no other heard what he said. ”But those guys took care of me”, Silver waved at his team with his arm. Then, like a miracle, the rhyhorn suddenly went up from the ground. “I wonder what he said”, said Anna to Illusion. Illusion just nodded and walked over to the rhyhorn. “Who’s the leader?” asked the rhyhorn
“There’s none”
“Can I hang out with you guys? Just for awhile…”
“You’ll stay as long as you want”, Anna smiled.

The rhyhorn presented herself as Tanya and she got introduced too the rest of the group. Zed was a little bit worried about the injure Tanya had.
“Oh, that?” said Tanya and nodded at her back, “it’s nothing”
“So, where are we going?” asked Tanya directly after she had explained about the slash.
“We don’t know because we are lost”, snickered Illusion.
“We trying to get down from the mountains”, explained Anna and gently bumped Illusion with her elbow because Illusion had given Tanya such answer.
“I know a way”, Tanya made a shy smile.
“Let’s not waste any time”, mumbled Nemesis and started to walk throw the snow.
“Little pokémon, you won’t reach the pass for days with that speed, now jump up” said Tanya and made a kind smile.
“Jump up?”
“Yes, I’ll give you a ride” said Tanya; she was in a much better mod then before, she even seemed exited. “Are you sure you are strong enough?” wondered Zed and worried studied the rhyhorn.
“Strong? None of you look too heavy”, smiled Tanya.
“But isn’t you ill and tired”, Anna gave Tanya a wondering look.
“Me? No, it takes more to kill me then some snow. My amour helps me keep the heat. Actually, I’m not even cold”
“I who thought you was dying”, Anna climbed up on the big rhyhorn and settled behind her neck shield. After a while, everyone had managed to sit down on the bulky creatures back.
“Are you sure we isn’t too heavy?” asked Zed again.
Tanya just laughed, shaking her head and started to walk. Tanya had a very wobbling walking style and the passengers stumbled around on her back
“Now, hang on” said Tanya after awhile. Anna was just going to ask why when Tanya suddenly made a rapid shrug, then Tanya accelerated and started to rush throw the snow with incredibly speed. The snow whirled around Tanya her heavy body made the ground shake each time she put down a feet.
“Maybe you want to travel inside your pokéballs instead?!” yelled Anna to the pokémon behind her; she had started to become cold because of the icy wind that was created by the speed. Illusion yelled something back but her words died in the wind, and then Illusion disappeared into her pokéball. Anna turned her head around just in time to see how Zed followed Illusions example, and then Silver, Titan and Nemesis was left. Silver shrugged and disappeared too. Titan got confused when everyone started to vanish around her and she took cover in the backpack Anna had. Nemesis was shaking by the cold but there was no way she would get into a pokéball and Anna knew that. Nemesis carefully crawled over the rushing rhyhorns back and sat down upon Anna lap. Anna opened her jacket and showed Nemesis that it was big enough for both of them. Nemesis closed her eyes and dragged her head into the jacket where she fell asleep.
Anna watched the landscape that flew by. It was mostly just grass covered with snow and more mountains, but she also saw large hoards of miltank and tauros pass by and one time she thought she saw a kangaskhan. The only thing she missed right now was some food and a soft bed. Then she changed her mind; any sort of bed would make it.

Lady Vulpix
22nd February 2003, 09:37 AM
I'm going away fpr the weekend. I'll be back on Monday. See you all soon!
Anna, I'll read your post when I get back. Amy or Connor may rate it first, but I'll still read it.

23rd February 2003, 05:00 PM
Where are you, Scott...

Last Exile
24th February 2003, 12:18 AM
Originally posted by Aglandiir
Where are you, Scott...

Geez, look who dropped in! :)

Lady Vulpix
24th February 2003, 08:37 AM
That was nice, Anna! Take 4 stamps! ¢¢¢¢

Charlie, it's great to see you here! Will you stay around?

If Scott doesn't come back by the last week of March, Connor will take his place as the judge of the Dragon Games.

Aipom Of Doom
24th February 2003, 02:35 PM
Ah good, so the Dragon Games will get resolved after all =).

So the last round will start at the beginning of April, I guess? That sounds good to me. =)

26th February 2003, 08:14 PM
Well I sorta have writer’s block right now, so I will post the prologue.


I looked out into the distance. All I could see was the white stuff called snow. I bent down and picked some of it up. My hand started to get very cold. I threw it down on the ground and started to walk on towards the lodge that was near-by.

It was pretty far to the lodge from where I was standing. I didn’t know how long it would take to get there. Then where I get there, I could warm up by the fire and maybe train my pokemon some. Soon I got bored. Then I figured out what to do.

“Go Surrender” I said. My white pokeball flew out of my hand and landed on the ground. A light flashes as my male Sneasel pops out onto the ground. I remembered that he likes snow and ice, so he is perfect for this situation. He looked at me and smiled. He was glad I called him out of his pokeball. He sat down in the snow and started to throw it around.

I laughed a bit. Then I motioned for him to get up. Sneasel got up and smiled more. I squatted down a bit and picked up Sneasel, and I put him on my back. Sneasel grabbed onto my shirt, and I started to walk on towards the lodge. The snow started to get worse the closer I got the lodge. Sneasel started to blow off my back. I got out his pokeball and recalled him.

“Return Surrender” I yelled trying to fight off the snow.

I kept walking on with my hands in front of my face. It started to get into my eyes. Then I had another idea. I grabbed a pokeball from my belt and got out a black pokeball. I threw it on the ground.

“Go Stanty” I called. My female Stantler popped out of her pokeball. She growled as the snow got into her fur. I walked over to her.

“Stanty, I need to ask you a favor” I said.

She looked at me with a confused look. I started to pick out the snow from her fur. She smiled at me.

“Stanty, may I ride on your back so we can get to the lodge?” I asked.

She smiled and nodded. I climbed onto her back, and Stanty started to move.

“Go straight Stanty” I said. “According to the map, the lodge is straight” I continued.

Stanty started to run very fast. It looked like it was as fast as she could go. It wasn’t long until I could see the top of the lodge building. Stanty continued to run towards the lodge. As soon as we were close enough, I got down.

“Ok, you can stop Stanty” I said.

I could see that Stanty was breathing really hard. “I’m sorry Stanty” I said. “You did very well” I continued. “Return Stanty” I said.

The red light hit the Stanty and she was absorbed into the pokeball. I smiled at the pokeball and put it back onto my belt. I looked at the sky, and I could see that the snow was letting up. I laughed and walked on towards the lodge. It wasn’t long until I was there. I opened the door to the lodge and walked in. There were a lot people in there warming up by the fire.

I walked into the building more and found a seat near-by. I sat down and started to rest by the fire. I looked around the room. It was a lot of pictures and other things on the wall. Then I noticed a hallway. I got up from my seat and walked down the hallway. When I got down to the end of the hallway, I could see that it was a pokemon center in here too!

I walked over to the desk and rang the bell for the nurse to come out. She came out of the back and smiled at me.

“Hello” she said.

“Hi” I said. “Can you heal my pokemon” I asked. “We were just in that bad snow storm and some of them are really cold and tired” I continued.

“Of course I can” she said.

She took the pokeballs and went into the back. I could hear rustling back there too. When she came back into the front, I could see my pokeballs in here hands.

“Thanks you, Nurse” I said.

“No problem” She said. “You know, there are games here that are starting soon” She said.

I stopped and listened to her. “What are these games you are talking about” I asked.

“They are winter events that your pokemon can enter and play against the other pokemon” she said. “If you want more information, then you can look at the sign that is in the hallway” she said.

I walked into the hallway and looked at the sign. I saw that the first event was some kind of ice skating race. I looked and saw that the lowest level pokemon was a level 10 Swinub. That was a perfect pokemon for me to race. I began to think about what pokemon I was going to use. I walked into the room with the fire and sat down. I thought about all the pokemon I have.

Then I figured out what pokemon I was going to use. I figured that I would use Sneasel! I got up and smiled. It was perfect! Then I heard an announcement on the intercom.

Hello Trainers. The sign ups for the race ends in about 10 minutes. If you want to sign up, please come to the lodge pokemon center as soon as possible.

I started to walk down the hallway. It was really crowded now that everyone heard that the contest sign ups were almost over. I pushed my way through the people and got to the desk.

“Hello” the nurse said.

“I would like to sign up please” I said.

“Sure” she said. “Now what level would you like to compete in and what pokemon will you be using?” she asked.

“I want to compete in the beginner’s level and I will be using my male Sneasel” I said.

She got out a piece of paper and started to scribble something on it. She put the paper in a box and put the box away.
“Ok you’re all signed up sir” she said.

“Thank you very much” I said.

I walked back up the hallway and out of the lodge. I started to walk towards the place that the race would take place. It wouldn’t be that much of a walk from here…

Yeah, I know. It sucks...

Lady Vulpix
27th February 2003, 06:24 AM
No, it doesn't, Matt. It was ok, and you're getting 3 stamps for it. ¢¢¢

Lady Vulpix
27th February 2003, 07:11 PM
I got an e-mail message from Scott. This is what it said.


I'm sorry for not replying but I have been wrestling for quite a while and I lost my love for the boards. I'm sorry for not telling you before.
Thanks for not forgeting me but I am not going to be posting anymore. Sorry and I hope you have good luck. This is hard, but goodbye.

Well, I agree that it is hard, but Dragon Tamers will go on. From now, Connor will take over the Dragon Games. Will you contact me, please, Connah?

Well... It's too late in the night for me to think of a good way to end this message, but I thought it was important for everyone to know this.

Aipom Of Doom
27th February 2003, 07:22 PM
It's a shame to see Scott leave... How many DT mods have left now? =/ But then, there would be no point in them staying if they didn't like TPM anymore.

When are the finals of the Dragon Games going to start now? Is it still going to be in April, or is it going to be sooner?

1st March 2003, 03:32 PM
Actually, I have a change in plans. I was planning to use Switchblade in the ice hockey game, but I shouldn't post his part until his battle at the Battle Tower is over; otherwise there would be problems with gaining levels, and they'd be contradictory. I've recently adopted a new pokémon at the Dragon Tamers Adoption Center, who will take Switchblade's place. This isn't the ice hockey game itself, yet. It's just more introductory material.


"Okay, okay, don't panic," I told myself. But how was I to keep calm? That nasty pokémon thief was at large, bent on causing trouble, and on top of that, had what seemed to be a long-lasting grudge against me; not to mention he had escaped yet again from the reach of authorities.

The police had been chasing Mike for over three years now. He had long since escaped their sight, and they had been surprised when I had reported him to them. They told me then that no one had actually spotted him for ages, let alone been confronted by him. I had to be the lucky one, didn't I? I just had to go and get myself a stalker; and a dangerous one at that. Whatever chances the police had of catching Mike rested on me and my pokémon. Lovely.


"Well, looks like it's time for you three to go. I'll be watching from inside after we're done with registering. Good luck!"

Switchblade shook his head. I'm not going to leave you here. That lunatic is still around here somewhere, and if he's going to show up with his mean Porygon2 again, I'm going to need to be here with you.

"But Switchblade, Evenstar and Nimrodel can't play a 2 on 3..."

You've forgotten someone. Switchblade winked.

I turned red with embarassment and guilt. "Oh, of course! How could I forget?" I picked up the fourth pokéball from my belt.

"Élan, come out."

Élan emerged with a silvery cry. The Unown had a helmet-like structure above his main circular body; a long, zigzagged tail extended downwards. For an Unown, he was rather small. People would mention to me how strangely three-dimensional he was all the time, though. I would smile and say nothing. Despite popular belief, Unown are not simple two-dimensional characters of a strange alphabet. They are living creatures, too.

I had found Élan at the Dragon Tamers Adoption Center not too long ago. I remember that what had struck me most when we met was his fiery spirit. He had so much life, so much vigor. He was quick to anger, though, and when he was enraged, he battled with so much fury that he would surprise his opponent, always. And he usually won, too. Well, good for him. It was their fault that they underestimated an Unown.

Unown are reputed to be useless creatures without their Hidden Power technique. But they're pokémon, and no pokémon can be simply defined. I knew that Élan was so much more than just some little black piece of the alphabet that knew Hidden Power.

Yes, it's a good idea for Switchblade to stay with you for your own safety. I will do perfectly well in his place. You can count on me. You stay here. Evenstar can bring along Nimrodel's pokéball. You can register us inside, I believe. You don't need to go outside again. That pokémon thief could be anywhere.

"Thanks," I said, smiling. I saw Élan leave with Evenstar, who was carrying Nimrodel's pokéball. The three of them were supposed to compete with a Smoochum, Swinub, and Squirtle. I giggled, thinking how intimidating a Lapras would be to the three small pokémon. Yet gentle Nimrodel was the one they would need least to fear... And Élan would be the most frightening of all. Funny how so many people felt pity for Unown. I wished they could all meet Élan. He was sensitive about the way some people treated him, though, as if he were permanently handicapped and helpless. He hated it, and I never mentioned it in front of him. Personally, I could feel his frustration. It just felt... wrong.

Then there were people who thought that supposedly "genderless" pokémon had no feelings, just because they didn't understand...

I myself could tell that Switchblade and Élan were male pokémon, though how I did not know. I just sensed it. Every time I thought of them or referred to them, the word "he" would pop into my mouth instead of "it". It was strange, but comforting. I wouldn't know how I could stand calling Switchblade and Élan "its" all the time, anyway. It was just a picky thing I had that I couldn't explain.

Switchblade nudged me. Let's go get some hot chocolate. Anything to get away from these big windows. I have the strange feeling that we're being watched.

I looked at Switchblade and sighed. Ever since that first incident with Mike and his Porygon2, Switchblade had lost his bouncy, carefree nature; or at least it had been subdued. He worried more often, which was not something that Switchblade would normally do. He had recovered rather quickly, though, after we had spent some time without having to see the pokémon thief again. Now, however, he was becoming edgy again, and much less playful than before. I had hoped that the dull winter had something to do with it, but in my heart, I knew that it wasn't so.

"Sure, why not? Let's go get hot chocolate. You can have extra cream, as usual." I picked Switchblade up from the floor. Not like he couldn't move faster by himself - he definitely could - but I just felt like it. I needed to hold something. Switchblade could sense it, so he didn't whine.

When we got to the hot chocolate stand, there was nobody there. We got ready to leave, but as I turned to go, someone shoved me into the corridor behind, hard.

"Hey!" I yelled, pushing myself to my feet painfully. But then the door closed, and the lock turned. I turned around in shock to see the face that haunted my dreams. Switchblade went into battle mode. His eyes blazed with fury.

"You're still going around with your baby Porygon?" jeered Mike. "Well whatever the case, it will sell for a fat sum of cash. I've never seen another Porygon with a birthmark on its chest that resembles the Fire Blast kanji symbol before, and I'll bet no one else has, either. Some rich fool will pay a huge load of money for it. Go, Porygon2! Snatch that Porygon! Destroy its trainer, while you're at it!"

I knew Mike meant it the other way around. He wanted me to suffer, mostly. He was rich. He couldn't care less if he actually got to steal and sell Switchblade or not. That wasn't important. Mike just wanted to see me dead. Agonizingly dead.

Switchblade didn't even get a chance to launch an attack at the Porygon2. He was immediately trapped in a restraining energy sphere, the likes of which I'd never seen before. Whatever Mike had done to his Porygon2, it was way too fast for Switchblade. I gritted my teeth. Speed was Switchblade's only advantage over that Porygon2 the last time... Switchblade was one of the quickest of his kind, but somehow, Mike's Porygon2 had boosted itself far above its natural potential. It was frightening. The pokémon thief had access to technology that made his Porygon2 a fearsome force.

"No more stinking Porygon to protect you now! Finish her, Porygon2!"

My eyes widened with fear. What did I do to deserve this? I asked myself.

At that moment, time seemed to fly by. It took me a while to realize exactly what happened next. Things just happened so quickly...

"Czarnina, go!" yelled a guy who had just come up behind Mike. He was my age, but a significant bit taller. I was cursed with shortness.

His Farfetch'd charged through the air as she uttered an awesome war cry, brandishing her magical leek, her deadly sword. Within moments, Czarnina had managed to hack down the Porygon2 into a state of frightened submission, and Mike, horrified, had recalled his precious pokémon and run, as fast as the wind despite his fatness. In a few seconds, he had disappeared from the scene.

I stood there, dumbstruck. Switchblade was surprised, too, but mostly relieved. Having been released from his energy prison, he came immediately to me to help me recover from my shock.

"Um, thanks," I managed to say after a while. "Not to be rude, but who are you, and how did you get here just in time? I haven't seen you at any Dragon Tamers event before."

"That's because I'm not a Dragon Tamer," he replied. "To tell the truth, I make it my duty to track down criminals and put them where they belong. My name? Mike." He extended his hand.

I took it, and we shook. "Hi, I'm Karin. Thanks again. It's a pity that you share the same name as that horrible man, though."

"I do?" Mike frowned. "Well, that's that, I guess."

"AND NOW, LET THE ICE HOCKEY GAMES BEGIN!" yelled the excited announcer.

"Oh, Evenstar, Nimrodel, and Élan will be starting," I said. "Switchblade, let's hurry." I turned to thank Mike(the skinny one) again, but he had disappeared. I guess he went off to chase Fat Mike.

Lady Vulpix
1st March 2003, 04:23 PM
That was excellent, Karin! Take 6 stamps! ¢¢¢¢¢¢

2nd March 2003, 06:26 PM
Élan the LV9 *male* Unown G, Evenstar the LV10 female Sneasel, and Nimrodel the LV7 female Lapras
LV10 Squirtle, LV10 Swinub, and LV10 Smoochum

Élan the *male* Unown G’s POV:

When Evenstar entered the ice rink on her skates, her movements graceful as a gentle flowing stream, the three pokémon who were already waiting held their breath in awe. Even more so when Nimrodel emerged from her pokéball, glowing with divine white light, but there was then an element of fear. How could I blame them? The Squirtle, Swinub, and Smoochum knew nothing. Of course they would be afraid. But when I came, they nearly choked with laughter. I fumed. I vowed that they would see the error of their ways.

Nimrodel, not wanting to go on offense, decided to act as the defender of our goal. I was glad that she did; she’d make a great defender. Being a Lapras, Nimrodel could easily cover more ground than Evenstar or I could. Our opponents would most definitely think twice before attempting to approach her. Besides, it was good that Nimrodel remained behind. She was young and shy, and it would have been torture for her to try to play against our opponents. As it was, Evenstar and I could protect Nimrodel from harm, if need be. I had a feeling that the three were quite vicious and aggressive in nature.

Little did I know how right I was. As soon as the game began, the Squirtle and the Smoochum charged at Nimrodel from the left and the right, respectively, each with a fist that blazed with white chi energy. The Swinub approached from behind the Squirtle, ready to knock the puck into the goal… Evenstar, alarmed, had quickly managed to restrain the Smoochum, but the Squirtle was too quick for me; I was too far away to reach in time. The Squirtle leapt into the air, and it really looked as if it was going to bring its fist smashing down into Nimrodel’s face… But she ducked in time, and her attacker sailed past her and fell to the ice. Nimrodel dodging was what the Swinub had counted on, though, and in that instant, it whacked the puck directly above where Nimrodel’s head would have been if she had not dodged. The puck flew right into the goal. “SCORE!” the announcer yelled. “One point for the Blue Team!”

I was irritated, but I said nothing. If I had spoken, Nimrodel would probably have thought that I was putting the blame on her, which was not the case. I was irritated at myself for not catching the Squirtle. Evenstar could see that and understand, so she let me be.

Fueled by the first round of defeat, Evenstar and I, determined not to let something similar happen again, sped down the ice to the unguarded goal. Evenstar could skate faster than our three opponents, while I could float more quickly than everyone. By the time we made it to the rival goal with the puck and scored, our opponents were huffing and puffing behind us, flushed. In attacking, they had forgotten to leave one pokémon behind to tend their goal.

To my surprise, the three, after retrieving the puck, left their goal unattended – again. Each moved at a greater pace than before, racing towards Nimrodel with glee, as if they had escaped us. Nodding at each other, Evenstar and I pursued the fleeing three; we caught up with them before they had made it halfway across the field. While Evenstar leapt in front of them to intimidate them, baring her teeth and brandishing her sharp claws, I snatched the puck from the Squirtle unnoticed, and scored before the three had a chance to recover from the shock of having failed to prevent another point from going to us. They had made the same mistake as before.

This time, the Swinub stayed behind to guard the goal. About time. I was beginning to think they would never take the hint. Evenstar got the puck this time, but quickly lost possession of it. The Smoochum had cleverly stolen the puck with her telekinetic grip, and as she did so, the Squirtle had quickly shot a forceful jet of water at Evenstar to make her lose her balance. Evenstar did not stumble, but she had to wipe the water out of her eyes, for there was so much that she could not see.

Then Nimrodel surprised both her attackers. All three of our opponents had figured out rather early that Nimrodel’s size was not to be feared; they knew that she wouldn’t like to hurt anyone, which was why she stayed to tend our goal. They had fallen into the trap of underestimating her, like they still did me. When they approached, threatening to administer physical blows to her again, both the Squirtle and the Smoochum assumed that Nimrodel would simply let them pass and score easily. That was where they were gravely wrong. Nimrodel would not hurt either of them if she could help it, but that didn’t mean that she would not attempt to halt their approach. Before the Squirtle, who had possession of the puck, could so much as cry out in surprise, he felt the puck pushed far away from him by Nimrodel’s own shot of water.

I had been following the two aggressors closely, and I seized the opportunity in the momentary confusion. The puck was mine for the time being. I sped towards Evenstar, who waited at the rival goal. By the look on her face, I could tell that she had assessed the Swinub’s strengths, and found out that it would be difficult to get the puck by.

The Squirtle and Smoochum gave chase, and to my surprise, they were gaining. I was not in the least bit tired – not at all as much as they looked – but it seemed as if they had gained some new source of energy that drove them forward with renewed strength. Perhaps it was the fear of facing defeat. When I felt uncomfortable, I passed the puck to Evenstar, who, all the time, had been collecting rippling ethereal energy in a throbbing, deep purple ball that rested on her palm. Immediately after taking possession of the puck, Evenstar hurled her menacing orb directly in front of the Swinub, who moved aside to avoid the eruption. In that moment of weakness, Evenstar struck. We had scored our third goal.

Then things started getting tougher. The Squirtle, in anguish, released a stream of colorful bubbles that violently exploded in Evenstar’s face. She shrieked and held her face in her hands, stunned. I knew I would have to cover for her for a while, as she took time to recover. It wasn’t easily done, though. As I prepared to give chase to the Squirtle who had stolen the puck, the Smoochum decided to subject me to a blast of particularly nasty arctic wind. If I had any teeth, they would have chattered. A lot. Needless to say, I shivered uncontrollably. My mind seemed to go into a torpid state. It was difficult to think clearly, and my body, sluggish, refused to co-operate much, too. I felt as if my mind had been frozen by the wind.

This time, try though she might, Nimrodel could not ward off the offense before we got to her. As the Squirtle provided a jet of water, the Smoochum had frozen a large patch over Nimrodel’s eyes, and though Nimrodel had tried valiantly to prevent scoring, she could not see. The puck flew into our goal for the second time.

By now, Evenstar had fully recovered, and so had I. Something took over our souls, then; some vengeful spirit or other. Whatever it was, it brought us to score our fourth goal with no contest. In some kind of mad fury, Evenstar and I had dashed down the rink, seized possession of the puck, and driven it past the Swinub’s defensive efforts without so much of a challenge.

Nimrodel had removed all of the ice from her eyes, and was more than ready to guard our goal from the offense again. Evenstar and I were tailing our opponents and preparing to take the puck, but suddenly, the Squirtle and Smoochum both split into many separate entities… They approached from all sides. Nimrodel reacted wonderfully. With the gift of sight that she had received from birth, she purged the arena of all false illusions, and cleared her mind. No mirror images would fool her now. The Squirtle and Smoochum approached from opposite sides, but this time I was ready. While Evenstar restrained the Smoochum, I grabbed the skating Squirtle and wrapped around it… But the Squirtle crumbled to pieces. I was shocked. Then, I realized what happened… How could I not have seen this before? I scolded myself. Substitute, of course!

By then, Nimrodel had spotted the real Squirtle, and she blasted water at its feet from the sides so that it would dodge. She was coping very well, and it looked as if the Squirtle would not be able to shoot the puck into the goal… But suddenly, it was lifted into the air, and before we realized that the Smoochum was powering it with her mental force, the puck had flown into the goal.

The score was four to three. The Blue Team was directly behind us… and they knew it. It seemed as if they would never let us score; the same was true with us. For the next quarter of an hour, the puck had passed possession back and forth without anyone scoring at all, or even getting close to the goals. We had kept each other busy in the middle of the field, exchanging possessions of the puck countless times, each determined to get the puck, and at the same time each making sure that the other team would not get it.

Finally, Evenstar swiped at the air directly in front of the Smoochum’s face with her razor sharp claws, and the Smoochum flinched. Evenstar lunged at the puck and seized it, making her way across to the rival goal. Twice she shot, and twice the Swinub had blocked with determined effort. I kept the Squirtle and Smoochum at bay.

But the Squirtle and Smoochum were determined to get past me, and they darted irritably from side to side trying to cross. I would not allow it.

In the end, the Squirtle said something that spelled his doom. “Hey, Unown G, move! We don’t want to hurt you, you know, because that would be just cheap. We don’t like picking on weaker pokémon. Please stop blocking our way, or we might actually have to attack you!”

At that, I exploded. A wave of berserk fury swept over me; my single eye blazed with the flame of madness. Evenstar, who was still trying unsuccessfully to score on the Swinub, stopped to wait. She had seen me like this before, and she knew what would happen next. The Swinub had frozen in terror, and both the Smoochum and Squirtle had stopped to think twice about regarding me as some incompetent, handicapped pokémon. I could sense their fear. “Yes,” I roared while cackling madly, “be afraid! I possess immense power that your blind eyes could not see. Now, they will open… painfully.”

My entire body burst into a raging inferno; I was thoroughly engulfed in searing flame, and the ice beneath melted upon the thirsty licks of the tongues of fire. The air became unbearably hot; a red glow devoured the scene, and the chaotic sky looked like an oven of fire.

I laughed, and all was silent. My maniacal voice boomed like a rumble of thunder; the roar of the flames grew louder, and the fire reached out to extend the territory it had seized with its power. The pool of water grew hot. I could tell from the dark steam that rose and the discomfort on the three foolish pokémons’ faces. I gave Evenstar the signal, and she drove the puck into the rival goal for the final time… Then she bolted away, to wait with Nimrodel and comfort her. Poor Nimrodel had never seen my wrath before, and I was sorry that she, so young and innocent, had to watch… But I would not stop.

By now, a ring of scorching fire circled the three horrified pokémon. They trembled. They were trapped. Then, from the central sphere of flame that came from within me, the area erupted. The blaze of the inferno descended upon my victims, and they succumbed to the flame…

“THAT WAS UNNECESSARY!” the announcer blared, as medics rushed to bring the three pokémon to the Pokémon Center. “THE UNOWN G IS DISQUALIFIED!”

I didn’t care. All was well. I had won peace.

Nimrodel, Evenstar, and Élan (disqualified) won!
Nimrodel grew to level 9!
Evenstar grew to level 11!

2nd March 2003, 09:58 PM
Lady Vulpix, I'm back! It's me, Pokemaster Jay! I tried to get into my old account, but it failed, so I decided to make a new name. Unlike the last time I came back, all of my pokemon's stats and my items are still intact. I will post them sometime in the near future. I would also like to tell you that my pokemon can still be used at the Pocket Monster's Breeding Center for breeding.

Lady Vulpix
3rd March 2003, 04:58 AM
Welcome back, J! It's good to know your pokemon are safe and sound.
Well, Karin, that was a vicious match. I guess Élan will have to learn to control his rage in the future. Very nicely done! Take 5 stamps! ¢¢¢¢¢

Lady Vulpix
3rd March 2003, 08:51 AM
<Gabi's POV>

It was one of those days when I didn't know if I was more tired of the things I had done during the last month or from the things I still had to do. It was one of those days I just didn't have the strength to get out of bed, and I kept turning my body from side to side, bringing back images of the weird dreams I'd had during the night and hoping that Lagi would feel my need for her and help me up. But Lagi was not around this time. Instead, my thoughts were disrupted by the pressure of a digitigrade's paw on my chest, at a moment in which I was lying on my back. I slowly separated my eyelids and saw Tsunami's big eyes staring at me.
"Ouch!," was the first thing I managed to get out of my mouth.
The Vaporeon got his paw off me and jumped down from my bed. I picked up the glowing stone which was on my room's desk, stilled tied to the necklace, and got up in order to put it on.
"Why did you do that?," I asked my Vaporeon friend.
"I figured it would be the best way to get you out of your bed," he replied. "Guess what. It worked!"
I sighed.
"I guess I have to thank you, then. I thought the bed would absorb me and swallow me. But next time, could you think of a way to help me that lets me breathe normally?"
"Would you rather I shot cold water at you?," he asked.
"Hmm... no, that could bring my blood pressure up to normal, but it would mess up my bed. Can't you lift my back somehow? The problem when my pressure is down is that I can't sit up on my own without getting dizzy."
"I thought that happened only in the summer."
"In the summer and when I have too many things to do," I informed him. "Contradictory, isn't it? The more things I'm supposed to do, the less energy I have to do them."
"I wouldn't underestimate your energy," Tsunami told me. "I know you, and I've seen you have a lot. I think you may be wearing yourself out. Working too much and resting too little."
"Maybe," I admitted. "But how can I change that? I have to work on my thesis without neglecting my own work, which never seems to give me a rest. Amy has been more helpful than I could have imagined, but I don't want to put too much pressure on him. And Connor already has his hands full finding out what's going on with the Dragon Games. Alex is gone, so seems to be Nolan, there are no signs of Scott yet, not to mention the others who vanished away over a year ago. And I still have to pick a subject for my next report, and now that Scott is away, I don't even know who I'll be writing it for. It's just too many things at once."
"Isn't it always like that?," Tsunami questioned, looking at me out of the corner of his eye. "It seems to me that you absorb responsibilities like a sponge absorbs water, and then you complain about them. What would you do if you had more free time?"
"Write, read, spend more time with my friends, which of course include you, and maybe see a movie or a play," I answered.
"...And jump on the first opportunity to do something for the firs person who needs it," he finished.
"How do you know everyone so well?," I asked him.
"I have big eyes," he told me. "And believe me, I'm quite nervous too. I'm the one whose battle has been postponed for months, remember? But now that you've told me Connor would sort things out and make sure the games continue, I feel better. I think you should feel better too. Things are beginning to fall back in order, and you've even had some time to write lately. I've seen you. So enjoy what you have."
"Thanks, Tsunami. I'll do my best. Still, I'll jump on the first chance to get out and have some fun."
"Me too," he assured. "Moreover, I think I'll be heading to the Eevee House. See you there when you're done with today's work!"
With that, he left my room.
It had been busy days, which meant they'd been normal days. It was still winter, which was good news for me (I could drink as much tea as I wanted to and didn't have to suffer the intense heat of the summer). I had taken a one week trip to my grandmother's place in January, and I'd gone back to the place where Tsunami had evolved, where my team and I made a symbolic 2-years-late celebration. Now my last issue with Tsunami had been sorted out. I had also rested a lot, and even written some letters and part of a story, so I couldn't complain at all. I had renewed my energies as much as it was possible. But that time had passed and now I was already feeling the need to recharge my batteries again.
My pokemon tried to mantain as much activity as they could. Some frequented the Eevee House regularly, and some went to the Battle Tower to train with their friends from Amy's team. Those training sessions helped Ventura and Lagi gain a level each. But there was still the feeling of being caught in a dull routine. We all wanted to do something different. Something new. I wished the Maze would make a new appearance. That was the kind of fun I needed.

Fortunately, my wishes were heard. No, the Maze didn't come back at that moment, but something did come. And it was none other than Ryan who gave me the news. Someone had organized a winter games competition for pokemon. That sounded great. It was fun, it was new and it was a challenge. I was sure my pokemon would love the idea. Ryan told me where and when the games would be held, and I made sure to inform all the other Dragon Tamers of this event. I managed to lay my hands on a brochure and, when I read the rules, I discussed my ideas with my pokemon.
"There's a hockey competition. I think our old hockey team could come back for some more action," I suggested.
"I'm all in for it!," Caledor cheered. "I liked playing hockey the last time, and the old team was great. Besides, you can count on me for everything that can be classed as a game."
"Watch your words," Ventura warned him. "Some consider the Russian roulette a game."
"Well, almost everything, then," Caledor corrected himself.
"Girls?," I asked.
"No problem with me," Sylvan told me. "I just hope I do better than last time. I'll take my clover to bring me luck."
"I'll do it," Amber decided. "It may bring some old memories I'd rather leave behind, but I can't let that paralyze me. I want to be free, forge a good future. I guess this is the best way."
"Don't push yourself too hard," I advised her. "You may need some time to get over..."
"Volvagia. You can say it," she said. "I won't deny it, he left me and it still hurts. I feel like it will always hurt when I think of him, even if I get over him. But I'm ready for this. I may not be ready to fall in love again yet, but I can definitely play a hockey game. He won't take away my capability to have fun with my friends."
"I'm glad you're taking it so well," I praised her.
"I've been worried sick for months about him," she explained. "Not knowing where nor how he was, not even if he was alive or not, was a torment. Now I know he's alive and well and he left on his own free will. I can't change his will and I wouldn't want to, so the only thing I can do is rebuild my life without him. I don't know why, but I somehow feel calmer than before. Like facing the facts put an end to the uncertainty and put things back in order. The time for tears has already passed."
"Another proof of Amber's steel-like determination," Water Angel commented. "She didn't get her Hidden Power for nothing."
"Can I be in more than one event?," Caledor asked me. "I don't want to sound selfish or anything, but I've been training too little lately and I need some serious workout which doesn't involve Ventura."
"Always so grateful," the Venomoth laughed. "Don't worry, I'll never train you again. Get your own targets and your own way to improve your aim."
"Actually, there's a way here," I remarked. "The course includes target-shooting. The brochure isn't very clear about that event, but I'm sure it will be interesting."
"I'll be ready for anything," the Espeon assured. "So, can I take the course?"
I laughed at the sound of the phrase "take the course", but I accepted.
"Now, there's only the race left," I said. "I was thinking..."
"Then stop thinking," Hero interrupted me.
"That was rude," I told him.
"Didn't mean to, but there's nothing to thin about," he said. "If there's a race, then I'm in. I don't mind who I have to race against, even if there's cold water or anything. I want to run a race. I haven't done that for ages! And you know no one here likes races more than I do."
"Good point," I agreed. "I could give someone else the chance to teach you manners, but I'm not that kind of person. I know how much you enjoy racing and I won't deny you that pleasure."
"That's great!," Hero exclaimed. "Thank you, Pix! You rock! Better now?"
"Pix?," Pidgeot repeated. "I hadn't heard anyone call her that since... the Tower of Hoeth, I think."
"I don't know, it just came out," the Ninetales laughed. "Was my compliment ok, Gabi?"
I shook my head, laughing.
"A compliment is ok as long as you don't explain it's a compliment or say it only to please someone, but without feeling it."
"Oh, gosh, girls are hard to please," Hero commented.
"Just be yourself," Lagi advised him. "That's the best thing you can do."
"But when I'm myself they think I only think about myself," Hero complained.
"Hey, hold on," Tsunami interrupted them. "Are we talking about Gabi now, or about...?"
Hero's burning look made Tsunami shut his mouth.
"...someone else? I was just asking," the Vaporeon smiled sheepishly.
"I was speaking in general," Hero shrugged.
I could tell what he was thinking. Tsunami was his best friend, but sometimes his comments could be really annoying.

So, it was all set. I waited eagerly for the day to come while I continued doing my job. Strangely, it felt lighter now. Things were falling in place.
On the day of the Winter Games, my pokemon and I got out earlier than usual and headed to the lodge where the competition would be held. There weren't many people around, but that was probably because we were early, and some wouldn't get out of their homes until the weather was a bit warmer. The lodge was nice and welcoming. After registering, we went to the dining room to have a cup of tea and biscuits. It didn't take long until more trainers arrived. There weren't many I knew, though, and hardly any I could talk to. It was strange, there were no signs of Ryan. I hoped his occupations didn't cause him to miss the games.
The deadline came and I hadn't seen Ryan yet. He could be somewhere else, there were many people now and not everyone was on the same place. I decided to walk around and look for him, but I couldn't find him. Ventura and Lagi confirmed his absence. Right what I needed... the least. Well, I wouldn't worry about him being swallowed by a black hole yet. We hadn't arranged a meeting point or anything. If he didn't show up during the games, then I would call him. For now, I had to help my pokemon get ready.

<Hero's POV>

Why Gabi was so tense was something that escaped my comprehension. People tended to disappear and then show up, and so far nothing really bad had happened to any of them. Some were even presumed dead, and turned out to be alive and well. I was even more puzzle when, after sharing my thoughts with her, she told me that she didn't believe anything bad had happened to Ryan. Was she hard to understand sometimes! But well, there were many times when she didn't understand me either. Those things usually happened, and they didn't impair our pokemon-trainer relationship, so I decided not to give it another thought and, instead, to focus on the upcoming challenge.
I got to watch a pair of races before my time came, while getting used to having ice-skates on my paws. I didn't have the best viewpoint, but at least I could appreciate some of the moves. The participating pokemon knew a few tricks and were not afraid to show them, so the sight was quite amusing. However, none of them seemed too fast. I hoped I got a good challenger, a pokemon that required some effort to beat. Maybe a Rapidash...
"Lady Vulpix's Hero and Midnight Angel's Seaward, please report on the ice track," the loudspeaker called out.
Seaward, eh? It sounded like the name of a Water pokemon. I couldn't think of any that was fast enough on ground, but I could have some problems if my opponent decided to make up for its lack of speed by using water attacks on me. I'd have to be careful. Just the way I liked it.
I walked to the ice ring, my skates proving to be quite an annoyance. I reckoned I should have trained more on them earlier. If they were uncomfortable for walking, what would running on them be like? Gabi had given me some instructions, but we hadn't had the chance to practise on ice for more than an hour, and even then I had run on the ice on my bare paws, not with these annoying blades. I wasn't quite comfortable with letting myself slide yet. Well, I would make the best of the little experience I had.
My opponent soon came in, sliding on his belly. He wasn't wearing ice-skates. Of course, what kind of skates could fit the shape of a Lapras? If anyone ever thought of any way of fitting metallic blades under a Lapras's body, they would only hinder the aquatic pokemon. Just as they were hindering me. Was it too late to take them off? If Seaward could race without the skates, I should be allowed to do the same.
"Are you nervous?," the male Lapras asked me.
"Nah, not nervous. Just a bit uncomfortable, that's all. But I will fix that."
"I didn't expect to run against a fire pokemon. Doesn't the cold bother you?"
"It's not that cold, I've been in much colder places than this. And I have enough fire inside to keep myself warm."
"So you can stand the heat and the cold. What does bother you?"
I thought for a moment before answering.
"Many things, but I think being unable to run would bother me the most," I finally replied. "It happened once; I got hit by a bullet and I was healed, but I had to refrain from running for three weeks for my leg to heal completely. The worst three weeks of my life."
"Oh, sorry to hear that. I guess I'm up for a challenge, then, since you like running so much. Would it be ok with you if I used an attack or two?"
"Do what you must, just don't let me win. That would be the worst thing you could do. I like a good challenge and I won't go easy on you. I want to win this by my own merit."
"You're quite a character!," Seaward exclaimed. "I guess water pokemon don't intimidate you."
"If they had, I wouldn't have won the first Griffon Games," I said, proudly. "I've also battled a Lapras before. A female named Morning Mist. She was a nice opponent; she knew how to put up a challenge."
"Really? Who won?"
"I did."
"It sounds to me like you love to brag," he commented.
"Well, I can't say I don't," I chuckled. "But I don't lie. What about you, have you ever been up against a Ninetales before?"
"Yes, once. I won too. But it was not a race, just a battle."
"Then this will be interesting," I coucluded.
We could have kept on talking, but the voice on the loudspeaker caught our attention, indicating it was time for the race to start. I turned to the starting line and readied myself to run or slide, whatever came easier.

Level 64 Ninetales vs. Level 50 Lapras

A small explosion marked the beginning of the race. I shot out with the impulse of the sound, gaining the advantage. Seaward needed some time to propel himself and gain speed. I lost him on the first turn. This was too easy. Even with the skates on, I was much faster than the Lapras. The first lap was a piece of cake. I used it to get more comfortable with sliding short distances, being careful to stop on the curves and take them running instead of sliding.
After running about 150 meters, I could already see my opponent taking the next turn. I would pass him and gain a whole lap of advantage over him... or so I thought. With my eyes fixed on the Lapras, I made the big mistake to stop looking at the floor and I slipped on a puddle of water which hadn't been there the first time I'd passed. I landed on my tails, and it took me so long to get out of the puddle and back on all fours that Seaward got the chance to reach me and pass me. Tricky Lapras! Well, I couldn't complain. After all, I'd been looking for a challenge, and having a tricky opponent would give me the chance to display some of my own tactics too.
I got up and did my best to regain the lost distance without falling into another trap. Seaward had spread water on different spots all over the track. The water helped him slide faster, while it slowed me down in the best case and made me fall in the worst case. I was still faster than him, but it was becoming hard to keep up. I passed him by the end of the second lap, but he reached me again in the fifth one. And everything made me believe that things would only get harder if I didn't do something. I decided to play a wild card. It would take time and was bound to cost me a lap, but it might work.
I slowed down and let Seaward pass me, without completely stopping in order to give him the idea that I was still trying to catch up. When he took a curve and disappeared from sight, I turned around and began to summon a Confuse Ray. I stood there, charging up a blast of mixed energies and confusing emotions, and released the ghostly attack as soon as my opponent showed up in front of me, without allowing him the time to question why I was facing the wrong direction.
"I wish Tracker was watching this," I thought to myself as the Lapras absorbed the full charge and his course was altered, making him hit the side wall; but I dismissed the thought quickly and turned around, getting back on the race.
I did my best not to slip again. The track was filled with puddles, but I managed to avoid them. I wish I could do something to freeze them or dry them out, but it was impossible. Fire attacks would have only made things worse, and nothing else I could have done would have changed anything. With some effort, I finished my 6th lap. I was in the middle of the 7th when I saw Seaward again. He had advanced, but was still bumping against the walls. I had an idea that would help me take advantage of his confused state. I stood where I was, and cast a hologram on the other side of the track.
I was getting better at creating fake images of myself. I could now make one appear on any spot and make it move at my will. More were harder to handle; I could hardly make more than two move in different ways or remain coherent beyond a short distance. 6 would have had to remain still, and I'd never been able to cast 7 or more, but one was quite easy to handle. I made this image run on the opposite direction and pass by Seaward's side. The confused Lapras thought I was passing him and turned around, following the hologram. He chased my image past me without noticing my real body against the white snow, giving me the chance to gain a decent advantage.
I moved on, avoiding the water and keeping up the hologram which, I must admit, slowed me down a little, but kept Seaward distracted. When the fake Ninetales and I crossed paths, making sure the Lapras was out of sight, I let the image fade away. I took the first curve of the 8th lap and regained some speed. Less than a fifth or the race was ahead of me, I couldn't mess up. But then, coming from the other side, I saw Seaward charging fast in my direction. The confusion seemed to have worn out from the look in his eyes, or maybe he had used Mist. I didn't have time to summon a new Confuse Ray. Instead, my legs took the full blow of an ice beam. Seaward made sure ice had formed around my skates before turning around and resuming the race.
I was in trouble. I couldn't move as I was, and if I used a fire attack to melt the ice around my legs, I would also melt the ice of the track, creating a pool which would be too hard for me to pass. I had to think of something different, and fast.
I tried to pull up my legs to no avail. Then I tried hitting my back legs with my tails. I reached them, which was good news. I made my tails harder; hard enough to break the ice. It worked. My hind legs were freed by my Iron Tail attacks, and I managed not to hurt myself much in the process. The front ones were another story. There was no way I could reach them with my tails. I tried using my teeth, but I felt like it would take forever. Seaward passed me in the meantime, making me lose the advantage I had achieved. I reckoned I'd have to make a small sacrifice in order to get out of this situation. I used a small Ember, trying to focus it as much as possible around my legs. I did form a new puddle, but at least it was a small one.
I got out carefully and began to run again, trying to make up for the lost time. I reached Seaward and passed him in the middle of the 9th lap. But he was gaining speed, aided by the water on the track. I'd have to do something. There was no time for a new attack on either side. I had to let him gain a little advantage while I occupied my teeth and legs on the task of getting rid of my biggest hindrance on this race: my skates. Once I was free from them, I proceeded to run as fast as I could. I suddenly felt like a gust of wind, moving forward without anything to stop it. It was so much easier to avoid the puddles now! Most of them were small enough to jump over them! And gaining speed was not a problem anymore. I hadn't realized how much trouble the skates were causing. If I had known, I would have got rid of them much earlier! But it had been an interesting challenge, being on them.
The 10th lap had begun. It was the last chance... for both of us. When Seaward saw me coming, he launched a Bubblebeam to stop me. I evaded as many bubbles as I could and, while I couldn't elude all of them, I didn't let them slow me down. The end was coming, and I had to come out first. I used a Quick Attack to launch myself forward, just like I had done back in the first Eevee House race, a long time ago. I passed the Lapras without turning round to look at him. I kept my ears alert in case he tried anything, but my eyes were focused on the finish line... and keeping a look at the floor every now and then to make sure I didn't slip again. When Seaward came closer, I dashed faster. I heard his voice emitting an acute "Laaa..."; it sounded like he was going to release another Ice Beam. I got out of range before he could do anything. One more dash and... I made it! I crossed the finish line!

I grew to level 65!

It only took 2 or 3 seconds for Seaward to reach me after shooting his Ice Beam at the center wall. Attacking me would have been useless once I had already won. He took a deep breath.
"Congratulations!," he said. "This was a great race."
"Indeed," I agreed. "You came up with more tricks than I thought you would; you almost had me there. Had you moved a little faster, the result would have been different."
"I see you've had more training than me," Seaward remarked. "Maybe we can run again some other time; things may be different then."
"It will be a pleasure," I assured.
"Now, can I ask you something?"
"As long as the question doesn't refer to my seven tails, go ahead."
"Oh. Nevermind."
I shrugged.
"Okay, okay!, what's wrong with the world?!," I exclaimed. "Ok, it's not your fault, it's just that pokemon ask that everywhere I go. I got only one extra tail when I evolved, that's all. As you can see, I'm as competitive as any other Ninetales, if not more."
"Calm down, I was just curious, I didn't mean to hurt your feelings or anything! I believe you meant that you were competent, which you are, that's clear. And believe me, no one in the world will ever doubt your competitiveness."
I burst into laughter.
"You're right, I meant competent. I can't get competition off my head, can I?"
"Well, you're really good at it, if that helps," Seaward laughed with me. "Oh! My trainer is coming. Would you like to meet her?"
"Sure, but maybe at the lodge. My trainer's calling for me now, I don't want to miss the hockey game. 3 of my friends are in."
"Oh, I'm in too!," Seaward told me. "I'll be the goalkeeper of my team. You can watch my match."
"Sure. I'll cheer for you as long as you're not up against my friends," I said.
So I went back to fetch my skates in order to return them, and then each of us went to the encounter of his respective trainer and prepared for the next event.

3rd March 2003, 06:42 PM
I need more time to figure out what I want to do for the third and final event, but I thought I'd post something before I left to ski for a week. ^_^; Anyway, I was bored. Here goes.


Evenstar was sullen when she walked back into the lodge. She was holding Nimrodel's pokéball. From what I had seen from inside, I knew that Nimrodel had been frightened out of her wits. Perhaps she would avoid Élan for a while.

Élan was silent, but I knew he felt relieved of his anger... for the time being. He was sorry for Nimrodel, but once he flew out of control like that, he wouldn't stop for anything or anyone. Élan had an extremely short fuse; it didn't take much to light it. The only thing that triggered his fury was any implication that he was weak only because he was an Unown. He wouldn't mind if he was simply told that he needed more training, or that he needed to refine his battling style; in fact, he'd appreciate that kind of criticism and work seriously to fix whatever needed to be fixed. It was when someone looked down upon the Unown species that Élan became passionately furious.

You know that if I had not vented, I would have collapsed under my own anger, Élan commented. I had to do it.

"Yes, I can fully understand that, Élan." I sighed. "My only concern is that if your future opponents find out about this, they could exploit it as a weakness. They could provoke you into your uncontrollable state, then take full advantage of it. Strategically, this is not a good thing at all."

Good point. Élan didn't say anything for a while. He was thinking. Hard. Finally, he seemed to have come to a decision. I'll need some time alone to train myself against these outbursts. If I can convert my rage into a driving force for winning rather than just a total eruption, it will be a great strength rather than a weakness.

I nodded and recalled him. He wouldn't want to be disturbed for a while. Élan would come back when he was ready. Considering how much he had to do for himself, that would probably be a long time.

Evenstar noticed that Switchblade was being rather quiet. He was still shaken from our recent experience. Come to mention it, I didn't look too well, either. My face was deathly pale.

What did the pokémon thief do this time? Evenstar asked. How did he get in here without being spotted by the authorities? The entire lodge is swarming with police.

I sighed and sat down on a nearby sofa. It would take a lot of energy to recount the whole story. I started by telling Evenstar about how Switchblade and I had gone to the hot chocolate stand, only to find that nobody was there. She smirked as she imagined our frustration. Switchblade and I loved hot chocolate, and could not do without it for long. It was addictive.

My voice changed from a weary tone to one of fearful excitement as I began to talk about how Fat Mike had shoved me into the nearby corridor, and how Switchblade had been powerless this time against the nasty Porygon2's freak technological upgrades. Evenstar became worried at the mention of the unnatural speed and the energy prison, but she urged me to go on.

Then I told her about Mike - the cool Mike - and how Czarnina had so obviously trounced that souped-up Porygon2 and sent it whimpering to its master. Evenstar was impressed, but confused.

What was this guy doing chasing after the pokémon thief? From what I can tell, he certainly wasn't a police officer.

"I asked that same question," I told Evenstar. "Apparently, he's some really awesome trainer whose mission is to stamp out serious instances of crime wherever he can. Like a bounty hunter, but with good purposes. He only goes after criminals that are too artful and dangerous for the police to handle, I think."

That's amazing... Evenstar paused to think. I knew that some Dragon Tamers were powerful, but I've never heard of anyone taking such risks before... Especially if they are not obliged to. This Mike chose to pursue all these dangerous criminals, right?

"Yes," I replied. "But that's the thing, Evenstar. Mike isn't even a Dragon Tamer. I don't know where he's from, or anything else about him at all. He disappeared before I could thank him again for all his trouble."

Strange, Evenstar commented. He probably went off to chase the pokémon thief. Whoever he is, he's very good at tracing down his targeted criminals.

"Well, I'm glad we have someone like that around," I said. "It makes me feel safer, to say the least. The way Fat Mike ran, I could tell he was really afraid. He took one horrified look at Mike, seemed to recognize him, and bolted immediately away."

Switchblade had calmed down by now. He, too, had been deeply relieved when Mike had showed up. Switchblade was a great judge of character, and even more so than everyone else I knew. If I needed reassurance, I could trust his feelings toward the matter. Switchblade had felt very comfortable when we met Mike for the first time, and had acted as if all our problems with Fat Mike were resolved. It was a good feeling - to be reassured and feel safe.

"Switchblade, let's register you for the final event of this year's Winter Games," I called, making my way to the registration booth. "I doubt we'll see Fat Mike again for a while."

Lady Vulpix
4th March 2003, 09:22 AM
And there go another 4! You're advancing fast, Karin! ¢¢¢¢

7th March 2003, 01:03 AM
This is an official announcement.

The official finals for the Dragon Games will be posted on Saturday, 8th of March, 2003. It will include the prize list, information on the new R/S Pokemon, and deadlines for entries, plus alot more. Thank you.

AntiAsh Superstar
8th March 2003, 02:34 AM
Phew, finished! :o I can only apologise for the first half of this story being a trifle out of date when it comes to recent events - I'd written it a few weeks ago before any announcements about the Dragon Games had been made and I thought some of it was too cool to axe anyways. ^_^;;

Once upon a time life had been simple, but those days seemed like a far off memory to me. Whenever I tried to remember the earlier part of my life in Ulthuan, the exact details escaped me. I could remember spending a lot of time wandering from place to place. I could remember always seeming to walk straight into the trouble spots, so that, at least, had been a constant in my life. But beyond that? Nothing. It was as if the only reason I had found my identity in the first place was due to my association with the friends I had made in the period of time during and after the Pegasus Games, the tournament that had been responsible for a great deal of growing up on the parts of all involved. And even that seemed like a hazy memory to me. There had been a lot of dark days. There had been a lot of torment, a lot of times when the simple act of existing had seemed like too much of a bother. A lot of times where only the company of my pokémon had kept me from descending into insanity. Yes, those had been troubled times, but even they seemed like simply something I had read about in a story, as if they hadn't actually happened to me. In short, I had changed. And I could no longer even begin to recall how I had felt before. Which could well have been for the best. To recall exactly how depressed I had been at times... well, that would have been enough to start the whole vicious cycle off again. And that was something I certainly didn't much want to happen. Because, for some unfathomable reason, this confirmed cynic seemed to have finally found his niche in life, finally learnt to be happy with his lot. And it was a feeling that I had no intention of letting go of.

Of course, not everybody was as contented as I was feeling. My team were by nature a restless bunch. And even the change of scenery that came with a second move in as many years did little to quell the need for some action. The new house, it had to be said, was quite an impressive affair, more than large enough to comfortably accommodate the pokémon already resident in the house, plus more should the team's size ever increase further. Certainly Tsuyoi had been planning ahead with this one! It was a two-story, detached house with a more than generously sized garden that held enough space for a large pond and as many of the team who wished to go outside. Tsuyoi's sister, Amai, had agreed to come over sporadically to tend to the garden, which was just as well seeing as none of us were gifted with green fingers. In fact I had always loathed gardening, and I probably always would, so her help was more than welcome. Yes, this was a far more welcoming place than the old apartment had been, but even so, the novelty was beginning to wear off for some pokémon. Or maybe they simply had other things on their mind.
"What the...?" Pearl was the first to notice the cacophony outside the house. It wasn't really all that much, certainly not enough to wake anybody else up, but Pearl had always been a light sleeper. So she was the only one who really noticed it. A reasonably loud, persistent knocking coming from the garden. To her sharp ears it sounded like somebody was chopping wood, but logic dictated that this couldn't be the case. We had no need to chop wood in this age of central heating, and besides, who in their right mind would commence such duties at a time not long after midnight? No, there was quite definitely something wrong here. Sitting up in the well worn basket that had served as her bed for as long as she could remember, Pearl's eyes scanned the large room that called itself the pokémon bedroom. Everything seemed to be in order. She could quite clearly make out the slumbering forms of her teammates. Well, most of them, anyway. The spaces that were used by some of them were curiously empty. To be precise, there seemed to be no sign of Katnip, Milliardo, Pandora or Adreena anywhere. In many cases Pearl wasn't all that surprised. Adreena's bed was usually empty at night, the Vaporeon using the time to conduct her twilight liaisons with her enigmatic lover, Tamotsu. And Milliardo and Pandora seemed to not need that much sleep, a few hours between four and nine am seemed to serve them well enough. Dark types seemed to thrive in the night, anyway. But that still didn't explain Katnip's absence. In fact, the more Pearl thought about it, the more things seemed to make sense. The noise outside would probably be the Raticate, practising his moves on logs as he had a tendency to do now that he had the garden to exercise in. But why so late? And in such cold conditions? The winter nights were harsher than usual this year, and it wasn't like Katnip to do anything that would prove counterproductive to his usually healthy regime. Something about the whole situation didn't quite sit right with Pearl. And when that happened, the Ninetales didn't just sit back and watch. Silently she slipped out of bed, pushing the door open with her nose and heading speedily out towards the garden. Whatever was going on here, Pearl was determined to get to the bottom of it.

"Hi Pearl." The sight that greeted the Ninetales was more bizarre than she had been expecting. Indeed, Katnip was training on logs, but this was more than simple practise. The Raticate was assaulting the wood with such fury, such venom, that despite the tired look on his face that was easy enough to notice even through the fire in his eyes, despite the fact that he looked as if he was about to drop, it was as if the Raticate had been possessed. This wasn't the Raticate Pearl knew. "I hope you don't think you're gonna get any sense out of him. He's been like this for hours." For the first time Pearl became aware of Milliardo sat by her side. Truth be told he looked quite shocking as well, the mood of this cold place having broken through even his walls. "I only came out to see what all the noise was about, but you know, I was kind of loath to leave him like this."
"What's up with him?" Pearl was still shell shocked. It cut her up more than she cared to admit to see Katnip, normally so strong, reduced to this. "Has he said anything?"
"Not a word. He's totally lost it if you ask me." Milliardo sighed deeply, his own frustration with the scenario bubbling to the surface. "Stupid ****er, I don't even know why I'm freezing my butt off for him when there's a nice warm Fire type indoors that I could be cuddling up to. I think I've an idea of what's bugging him though. It doesn't take a genius to realise what's been eating at him for the past month or two. The words ‘Dragon Games' mean anything to you?" Pearl didn't respond, she just carried on watching the exhausted Raticate push himself beyond his limits. Milliardo was right, of course. It was easy to figure out what was making Katnip so angry. He had every right to be. His first tournament, his first chance to really prove himself, and the instant the news came through that he had progressed to the finals the entire thing seemed to have been dropped without a word. No explanations, no nothing. Not even so much as an apology. Of course he was feeling disappointed, of course he was feeling the rage that was being expressed in the only way the Raticate knew how. In fact it was a tribute to Katnip's normal composure that it had taken him this long to snap. But as understandable as his frustration was, there was no way Pearl could leave him in this state! She had to do something!
"Katnip, what's wrong with you?" Best to start softly, Pearl decided. And if reasoning didn't work she could always move on to more drastic measures. "Okay, it's good to get things out of your system and all but don't you think you're pushing things just a LITTLE too far?" It was as if the words hadn't even registered. The Raticate was still just attacking the wood. It was as if his mind had switched off to everything other than the brutal therapy he was forcing himself into. "Katnip, I refuse to believe that you, who's always been so level-headed, would act like this! Can't you see enough is enough? I know you're frustrated and all, but... but..." For once the Ninetales found herself at a loss for words. She would have expected this kind of thing off anyone but Katnip! "You're scaring me, Katnip." Pearl's normally confident voice sounded very small all of a sudden, and those beautiful ruby eyes looked almost as if they were going to burst into tears. "Whatever happened to the cheerful Raticate I once knew? I hate to see you like this. Please, Katnip, just talk to me would you?"
"Sorry." Suddenly the Ninetales became aware that Katnip had ceased his stress relief, and was now looking directly at her. She had become so wrapped up in her own confusion that she hadn't even noticed that the Raticate had been paying attention! In fact that wasn't the only change, somewhere along the line Milliardo had decided to return to the warm comforts of the house. Which just left the two of them, and maybe in some ways that was for the best. "Guess even MY patience has its limits. I was just gettin' a bit pissed off, yanno?" The pokémon offered a weak smile in a futile attempt to ease Pearl's mind. It wasn't really working too well. When even Katnip got like this the problems were clearly more than could be got over in a few moments.
"That's ‘a bit pissed off', is it?" Pearl quickly blinked away the tears. "I wouldn't like to see you get really angry!"
"Well maybe I was a bit. Sorry ta worry ya, Pearl. I just needed ta work out some of my anger, guess I just got carried away." Katnip paused for a minute, turning something over in his mind. "Hey, mind if I ask ya somethin' now yer here? Seriously this time. I know whenever I ask ya questions they're normally crap attempts at chat-up lines an' all, but this time I actually DO have a question." Katnip moved over and sat down besides Pearl, visibly glad to be off his feet for a while. "I'm sure ya know what's been buggin' me, don't take a genius ta work that one out! So, anyways, ya were in the Pegasus Games weren't ya? Tell me, what would ya have done if this kinda thing had happened ta ya?"
"Hmm..." That WAS quite a good question! "It probably would have been quite disappointing, but I'd have just shrugged and got on with it I suppose. There'll always be other tournaments. Then again, I don't live for competition like you do. And I never made it to the finals either. I just scraped a second place in the consolation rounds. I can understand you being annoyed."
"It ain't that." Katnip shook his head. "I just wanted ta actually HAVE that last battle, if the whole thing screwed up after the fight I wouldn't care. I was really lookin' forward ta that fight. Think about it, any opponent yer gonna face in the finals of a tournament like that's gonna be one of the biggest challenges ya could possibly take on! Ya know how much of a sucker I am fer a tough battle, an' I dunno if a chance like that's gonna come round again fer me any time soon."
"You really are a strange one, you know that?" Pearl let a slow smile cross her face. "Anybody else would be annoyed they'd lost the chance to prove themselves, but you couldn't care less, could you?"
"Nope." Katnip shook his head vigorously. "I don't care about winnin', or showin' off ta anybody, I just want the fight itself, everythin' else is just the icin' on the cake ta me." Katnip yawned suddenly, his exhaustion finally catching up with him. "But as ya say, there's gonna be other opponents I guess. Now fer the next set of questions." The Raticate turned to his companion with a glint in his eye that came as something of a relief for Pearl. "Number one, I never had a chance ta find out, are yer paws still as ticklish as they used ta be in yer old body? Number two, what would ya do if I pounced on ya right now? An' number three, any ideas how a guy can kiss a girl when he's got these bloody annoyin' incisors gettin' in the way?"
"Well, let's see. First off, unfortunately for me, yes. Secondly, I'd dodge with ease because there's no way you're going to convince me you're in top shape at the minute. Thirdly, I have no idea, but I'm sure if anyone can find a way around that one it'll be you." Pearl laughed suddenly, an at-ease laugh that was quite at odds from her earlier mood. "I look forward to being the inevitable target once you've come up with a solution to that one, though!"
"Ya mean that?" Katnip seemed more that a little surprised. It was little wonder, really. Pearl seriously doubted that the Raticate had even thought that his flirting had started getting though to her.
"Hmm, let me think..." Pearl paused for a second, deliberately stringing the moment out. This was how things should be! No more worrying bouts of frenzy, just lighthearted conversation. And maybe just a little bit of attraction in there as well. "Yeah, I think so. You've spent so long coming on to me, now I'm single one of these days I might just turn around and tell you to put your money where your mouth is!"
"I hope ya mean that, coz I will if ya give me the slightest bit of encouragement!" Katnip grinned winsomely, his earlier mood now well and truly forgotten. After all, there would be other chances to test his limits in battle. And there was more to life than just fighting and competition. That was something that even the Raticate could understand!

Things in the household had improved considerably by morning, both in mood and in temperature, although nobody was particularly willing to explain the large quantity of broken logs in the back garden. To be honest I really didn't think I wanted to hear the answers anyway. Not for the first time I had been woken up far earlier than I would have liked, this time by a loud and heated argument between Scratchy and Milliardo. Apparently Milliardo had yet again engaged his mouth before his brain - although at times you had to wonder where carelessness ended and deliberate antagonism began with the Umbreon - and said something that the Paras had taken exception to. And of course, the instant Milliardo realised he had caused offence he took great delight in repeating what he had done, only louder. It had taken the best efforts of the rest of the team to stop the two from coming to blows. Even now, breakfast well out of the way and the morning nearly over, the two pokémon were still sulking with each other. Or at least Scratchy was sulking. Milliardo seemed to have forgotten the incident had ever happened, busy as he was nosying at the daily newspaper and offering a brand of social commentary whose philosophy seemed to be that power either corrupts or turns a person into an instant imbecile. The scary thing being that in some ways I felt he may well have had a point, notable counterexamples to his theory being few and far between.
"Hey!" Most of us had long since given up on listening to the Umbreon's comments - given an audience Milliardo could have quite happily kept up his sarcastic, vitriolic comedy act for days - but there was something in his tone that caught my curiosity. A strange mixture of surprise and bemusement. Which probably meant that he had found something good. "Look at this, they've resurrected the good old pokémon ice hockey! You'd have thought they might have learnt their lesson after last year's chaos, wouldn't you?"
"Which you directly contributed to, may I remind you. Let me see that." Leaning over from my position in a rather comfortable armchair that I was more than reluctant to move from, I grabbed the paper and took a look. It was a large, prominent advertisement promoting this weekend's major attraction. Pokémon Winter Olympics. Ice hockey was just one of the many events on offer. From a spectator's point of view it would have made a fine day out. But from a competitor's... well, it was an irresistible prospect. We needed something to do, and these games were open to any trainer who wished to compete. "Looks interesting. Anyone fancy giving it a go?"
"But of course!" Milliardo grinned. "You all know I'm the finest hockey player the world has ever seen, I say that event's in the bag already, especially if we field the same team as last time!" The last time we had been engaged in an ice hockey match it had been Milliardo, Sindel and Katnip who were competing. But that was unlikely to be allowed this time. These events were organised into skill groups, and by now Katnip was far too strong to be allowed to compete in that particular team. But that didn't mean we didn't stand a chance. Far from it. It would just mean a little thought being put into who competed in which event.
"I'm not sure if I could take being put through all that again!" Sindel shuddered abruptly, evidently none too thrilled at the prospect of another hockey match. "If I remember rightly I suffered a minor heart attack once every ten seconds because of you two."
"Ya sayin' we didn't make a good team?" Katnip tried his best to sound offended but he wasn't fooling anyone. All of the negative emotions that had plagued him so much earlier now seemed to have deserted the Raticate completely. So much so that the only ones who knew anything about the whole escapade were the ones who had witnessed it for themselves. "We won, didn't we?"
"Yes, but it's a hollow victory when you've got to put up with the teammates from hell!"
"C'mon, Thingy, I'd have thought you'd have been used to having the teammates from hell by now!" Milliardo cackled, his usual sneer oddly comforting in its own perverse way. "Hands up here who actually thinks for one second we're the most well-behaved team on the planet?"
"You've succeeded in not killing each other for now, I think I might rank that as quite an achievement." A familiar voice rang from the hallway, a tone so supremely confident, so commanding, that it could only belong to one creature. "Dare I say that you lot do make quite a good team even if none of you will admit it? Whether you're good roommates or not, however, is a different matter entirely." Sure enough, the wolflike face of Tsuyoi, the mutated Ninetales who had been responsible for our current state perhaps more than anybody else, peered critically from the door of the lounge, those dark eyes, sinister yet curiously friendly, surveying the state of the room before him. "I'm glad to see that you CAN go for a day without me without getting into some sort of trouble. I was a little worried about leaving you. On past form I was expecting to find the house completely destroyed." Tsuyoi had indeed been gone for a good 24 hours, and nobody had even thought to question where he had been. The creature was a law unto himself, and if he wanted to vanish for a while that was up to him. "So, care to fill me in on what I've missed?"
"Can't I just fill you in on what you're missing out on?" Kasumi grinned broadly, evidently pleased to see Tsuyoi again. It was no secret that the Growlithe harboured quite the crush on the powerful pokémon, which no doubt spelled trouble. For one, or the other, or both. "I thought you could absorb the contents of people's minds just by looking at them, anyway."
"True, but it's so much more friendly to let everyone talk as opposed to raiding their memories, don't you think?" Tsuyoi offered a bemused smirk, the usual expression that was upon his canine face whenever his eyes alighted upon Kasumi. "And as for your other point, I'll just have to imagine it, at least until you do a little more growing up."
"I could evolve now if..."
"Oh no." Tsuyoi cut Kasumi off short in an instant. "I seem to remember going through this with you before, I refuse to let your planet-sized libido ruin your chances of becoming as strong as you could be if you just waited for a while. Even if you seem quite happy to allow that to happen, I'm not, and I think we've all learned by now that my word is final, hm?"
"Yes, sir." Kasumi's ears drooped slightly, as if the admonishment had actually gotten through to the small part of her mind that wasn't totally warped and she finally realised the truth in Tsuyoi's words.
"Good girl." Tsuyoi patted the Growlithe on her head before returning his attention to the rest of the assembled group. "So now that's sorted out I repeat my request for an update on what's going on. If, of course, you can all stop arguing long enough to manage that."
"You're asking too much there, Tsuyoi!" I chuckled, inwardly quite glad to see the seemingly demonic creature. For all the huge fangs and sharp claws, for all the immense physical and psychic strength, Tsuyoi was still an ultimately benevolent creature. At least to those he considered worthy of his guidance. "We like bickering too much. But as to what's happened, I guess ‘**** all' sums it up best." Suddenly I remembered something, a quick spark of inspiration lighting up my usually airheaded mind. "Oh, apart from this. Here, take a look." I tossed the newspaper over to Tsuyoi, who caught it easily and began scanning the pages with quite remarkable speed.
"Oh, you bought a newspaper, well done," Tsuyoi chuckled. "I apologise, that was far too Milliardo-esque of me. It looks as if they've done it again and organised some little game for you to play at the exact time you needed it. Remarkable how things like that are always happening, isn't it?"
"Totally. If I didn't know better I'd think there was some external force at work when it comes to the timing of these things."
"Ade! Are you accusing me of subtly manipulating people's minds in order to provide the stimulation you and your unholy rabble need every so often?" Tsuyoi looked offended, but I wasn't buying any of it. I had known him for far too long now. And the more I thought about it, the more it sounded like the exact sort of thing Tsuyoi would do. "I'm totally offended, I would never do such a thing."
"Yeah, I'll bet."
"Well, not often, anyway," Tsuyoi finally conceded, confirming my suspicions in an instant. "Admit it, you need the change of routine every now and then. It's all to your benefit that I plant the occasional idea into people's heads."
"Oh, so seeing as this sounds like it was all your idea you wouldn't fancy giving us a few pointers would you?" Milliardo asked lazily. "Forewarned is forearmed, et cetera et cetera."
"Not a chance, you should know better than to expect me to do anything more than the bare minimum to keep you all going. You don't want all the fun taking out of it, do you?" Tsuyoi yawned rather deliberately, as if to add a casual air to his whole demeanour. "Besides which, it isn't my idea, I just gently suggested the timing of the whole affair. They were going to hold this a little later before I persuaded them otherwise. The best part is they don't even realise I intervened. To all intents and purposes the change of dates is entirely the idea of those organising it. Psychic powers can be so handy sometimes, can't they?"
"Fine, but can't we have just a LITTLE idea of what to expect?"
"No. If you're that desperate to find out, go and take a look for yourself." And that, it seemed, was all Tsuyoi had to say on the matter, the powerful pokémon turning his attentions to more important matters, such as browsing through my CD collection to find something he wanted to hear. Of course, I had to admit that he had a point. Tsuyoi wasn't the sort to guide anyone through life in such direct manners. I had learnt from painful experience that his philosophy was to allow us to learn from our own mistakes. So asking him for hints was a waste of time. But checking out the whole situation ourselves... now that sounded like my kind of plan! After all, it couldn't hurt to turn up a little earlier, could it?

It turned out that the games were a remarkably well-organised affair. As one entered the location where they were to be held, you could see all kinds of stalls and attractions to keep the attention of the spectators in between events, ranging from tacky souvenir stalls to the obligatory refreshment vans. Everywhere you looked, people were milling about the stands, setting up their own stalls or checking out what others had to offer. And as to the event arena itself... well, that was quite the impressive sight, a large expanse of ice, water and snow expertly arranged so that it could have been home to any one of a number of events with only the most minor of alterations. The fact that the weather was nowhere near snowing only seemed to add to the effect, and it did make you wonder how those in charge of this event had manage to acquire so much snow. Then again, pokémon were strange creatures, and some could even influence the weather over a limited area. Maybe there was a logical explanation for all the snow after all.
"Okay, so what are we supposed to do now?" Sindel looked about her surroundings rather diffidently. "We're here to compete, aren't we?" This last comment was aimed at Kirei more than anyone else, the Espeon's attention clearly more focussed on a stall selling Pokédolls than it was on the matter at hand.
"Yeah, I know. I'd guess we'd have to sign up somewhere or other in order to compete..." My eyes scanned the stalls, hoping to find some kind of registration booth. But so far, nothing. Then again, my eyesight wasn't exactly at its best. Maybe one of my pokémon would have better luck. "Anyone spot anything that looks like it might be where we have to head for?"
"Not at all." Pearl shook her head. "Although I wouldn't be that surprised if wherever it is was a little closer to the event field itself."
"You know, that is quite a good point. Maybe we should take a quick walk over there. It wouldn't hurt to get a closer look at where you guys will be playing, anyway." That was a course of action I had learnt off Katnip. The more familiar you were with your surroundings, the better your chances of victory were. Maybe I could even get my pokémon a little time on the ice to help them regain familiarity with the terrain. And hell, maybe we'd actually find that registration booth after all.

"There you go, sir. Just fill this in and you'll be able to compete." The registration booth was tucked away in the most awkward corner of the events grounds possible, but in the end we had managed to locate it, due largely to Kirei's navigational skills and Sindel accidentally chancing upon the thoughts of the petite girl manning the stall. But having located the stand had opened up a whole new problem. Largely the fact that the registration form required us to choose which pokémon would compete in which event, and that was something I hadn't given much thought to until now.
"Thanks." I gave the brown-haired woman a thin smile of gratitude, before turning to consult my team. After all, they were the ones who would be competing, it was only fair to see what they had to say on the matter! "Okay, guys, we're allowed to register for three events. Any preferences?"
"Hockey, of course." Milliardo grinned broadly. "I am the hockey master, after all."
"Okay, but we've got to use a team of three of similar experience, AND no two pokémon of the same type are allowed." I sighed deeply. "Which screws up my original thoughts on the matter, I was thinking a team of Pandora, Kasumi and Kirei would be quite fun to watch."
"You mean me and Kirei, don't you?" Pandora giggled. "Miss clumsy over there on ice would be a total liability!"
"Are you saying I've no balance whatsoever?" Kasumi tried to look hurt, but really to the Growlithe it was all water off a duck's back. She knew her shortcomings, and to be honest she couldn't have cared less about them. She was a Growlithe, not a Persian, grace wasn't supposed to be one of her strong points!
"I think she's saying you have a hard enough time moving about on normal ground, ice and you doesn't work in the slightest." Milliardo stuck his tongue out at the Growlithe. "Anyway, I demand to compete in that event, so rethink your plans, Ade."
"Alright already." I ticked off the box to compete in the ice hockey. "But we can't field the same team as last time. Katnip's too strong for you now." I eyed my pokémon up, trying to evaluate which were of a similar strength - of a similar ‘level', if you wished to consider things in such simplistic terms - to my Umbreon. It basically came down to Sindel, Lucky or Scratchy, which narrowed things down even further. Scratchy was too slow to be of any use in a hockey match. And it was probably best not to field a team where two members were sulking with each other anyway. "Sindel, Lucky, do you guys mind making up the numbers?"
"Sure!" Lucky sounded more than eager. "It'll make a nice change to compete in something other than a battle for once."
"And as for me..." Sindel sighed, rolling her eyes in despair, "...I guess I just have to resign myself to my fate, I don't think I'm ever going to escape fighting alongside mouth almighty over there, so I might as well just get it over with."
"Heh, anyone'd think you didn't like having me as a teammate, Thingy."
"I don't think ‘not like' does it justice..."
"Hold it." I held up my hand before another argument could develop. Although Sindel and Milliardo were pretty good friends really, things between them could frequently get very heated. Best to nip this one in the bud. "We've still two more events to sign up for. I think a straightforward race wouldn't be a bad idea, and I'm sure one of you would like the cross country event seeing as it involves an actual battle. Question is, who wants to play?"
"Stupid question, dude." Katnip grinned broadly. "Tho I might just surprise ya an' tell ya ta sign me up fer the race. I think I fancy a bit of a change from all the fightin', it'll be real interestin' ta compete in a straightforward race fer once."
"Fine, but aren't you asking a bit much for anything to be straightforward around here?"
"All the better!" Katnip had that gleam in his eyes again that meant he had his heart set upon this and wasn't ever going to be persuaded otherwise. I was glad. It had been a long time since I had last seen my Raticate this cheerful, in fact I had been starting to worry about him. But apparently he had finally exorcised his inner demons, and the cheerful creature I had once known was now back with us. "Okay then. And as for the cross country... that's running, fighting plus target practise."
"Oh! Cool!" Kirei suddenly piped up, her attention finally diverted from the myriad of attractions and wonders around her. "Mind if I give that one a go?"
"Do you have any projectile attacks?"
"Well... I do have a little something I was working on..." The Espeon smiled sheepishly. "Although I can't say I'm the most accurate creature on the planet. I still wanna give it a go though! Please?" When Kirei wanted something she almost always got it. The Espeon was quite simply the master of coupling an endearing expression with a charming persistence. "Pretty please with a cherry and lashings of cream on top?"
"Kirei, you are such a manipulative bugger, you know that?" I had to laugh. Kirei could always do that to me. Her particular brand of lunacy was far less forced that Beckham's could be at times, and was all the more amusing for it. "Alright, you win. Again." I filled in Kirei's name and species next to the cross country option, followed quickly by my own details in the relevant places. Well, that wasn't so hard. Maybe I was finally learning how to make decisions after all! "So how about we hand this in and go sightseeing until the first event? Which, according to the schedule that came with this form, should be the race."
"Good, ya know I hate havin' ta wait about." Clearly Katnip was more than happy with the prospect of being the first up. Then again, patience pre-competition had never been something the Raticate had been that good at wielding. I recalled battles where he had been virtually climbing the walls waiting to get out there and into the action. Such was Katnip's way. "An' a bite ta eat before the race wouldn't hurt either."
"Sounds like a plan to me!" Swiftly I returned my completed form to the woman I had obtained it from, and then focussed my attentions upon my pokémon. Sure, as far as challenges went this one was one of the more unconventional competitions we had come across, but that was alright with us. We were an unconventional team anyway, weren't we?

It had only been an hour that we had been away. Only an hour, enough time to grab something to fill our stomachs and maybe indulge the sillier members of the team in their passion for gimmicky souvenirs. But in that single hour what had been a plain field of snow and ice had been transformed. Now there stood immense tiers of seating, surrounding a large oval track of ice created by cleverly barricading off sections of the ice field that no doubt also served as home to the ice hockey as well. Yet again I found myself rendered speechless by the sheer organisation of the people of Ulthuan. I hadn't even noticed one little bit of construction taking place! But then again, as Milliardo or Tsuyoi would have all too gleefully pointed out, I had never been one for paying attention to my surroundings. Maybe it had been erected whilst I had been waiting for our burgers. Or maybe not. Whatever the case, the grounds for the skating race were now ready, and that meant that it wouldn't be too long before the races were to be held.
"Are you ready for this?" The question was stupid, or course. Katnip was always ready for competition of any sort. But I felt I should at least take an interest in his pre-match routines, even if most of it meant absolutely nothing to me. The Raticate was the resident expert on battle. Not me. I just was the goofy guy who paid for the meals and offered the occasional word of support when it was needed.
"Course I am." Katnip's reply was short and to the point, as ever. He knew what he was doing, and we both knew it. This race, admittedly, was going to be a little different from the others. They were supposed to be held with competitors wearing skates, a quite ridiculous notion I had thought, but Katnip being noticeably larger than the average Raticate put paid to that one when it was discovered not a pair they had would actually fit him comfortably. So it had been agreed on after a great deal of arguing that this one would be a more conventional race. And judging by the sudden change of heart the officials had, the chances were Katnip was only allowed to go skateless thanks to the psychic intervention of certain powerful pokémon. Still, a race was a race to Katnip, held on ice or not. "Any idea what I'm up against?"
"No idea." Well, it was true, I hadn't! The races were to be held one-on-one, the pokémon competing in the event having been paired up in terms of skill levels. And maybe they had announced who was paired up with whom, but if they had we had somehow missed the announcements. Whatever Katnip's opponent was, though, it was going to be a pokémon that was at least theoretically his equal. Then again, was there a single pokémon on the planet who was Katnip's equal in every respect? The Raticate was one of a kind, and I for one was eternally grateful that a creature with his abilities had decided to join the team. Would we be half the team we were without his guidance? Certainly I could have never cut it as a regular trainer. I didn't know the first thing about battle. In fact my whole training career had been littered with lucky breaks and fluke accidents. No, without at least one real warrior amidst our group we would have been only half the creatures we were now. At least when it came to battling.
"Suits me fine." Clearly Katnip wasn't all too bothered by the lack of information. To him the unknown factor just made the challenge ahead all the more interesting. "Hope it ain't somethin' too slow though."
"They've matched these races up so that they'll be close calls, at least so I've heard. And don't forget it's not all about speed, Katnip, attacks can be used in this race as well."
"I know. An' it's more about endurance than anythin' else, especially over 1000 metres." The phrase ‘1000 metres' didn't really mean much to me other than it was a fair distance, raised as I was in a family who still used the imperial measurements of feet and inches. Despite spending my entire life being taught in metric measurements in school, they still meant very little to me when it came to visualising things. At least Katnip seemed to know what he was on about! "Anyway, sounds like our race is about ta start, Ade." The Raticate turned and fixed me with a rather odd look, sensing that I was miles away again. "There ya go again, so busy daydreamin' yer missin' all the fun!"
"Eh?" I snapped myself out of it quickly. My mind was frequently elsewhere these days, maybe more so than ever. A thousand different thoughts and influences were constantly fighting for attention within my mind, and not every one of them could be given the required amount or consideration. Frequently it seemed to be the events right in front of my nose that lost out in the end. "Sorry. You know me, I'm an airhead, and an inattentive one at that. What were you saying?"
"I was sayin' that the PA's just said somethin' like ‘will Ade B an' his Raticate get down ta the skatin' arena pronto coz their race is up in a few minutes'. Honestly, Ade, yer useless. An' what's with the ‘Ade B' thing anyway, ya haven't called yerself that in years!" Katnip sounded somewhat exasperated, and to be honest I couldn't blame him. Sometimes even I managed to lose my patience with myself, and such a feat took some doing!
"So I got nostalgic, so sue me." I shrugged. To be honest even I wasn't sure why I had reverted to that one. Maybe I was just a little wary of giving out my full name. I liked to cling onto my anonymity, something that was getting rather hard since Katnip's successes at the Dragon Games. Even so, a simple ‘Ade' would have sufficed. Or I could have chosen one of many weird pseudonyms I had established over the years. I wouldn't have been the first. Maybe it was just simply one of those brainless, spur of the moment things I was infamous for. "Okay, good buddy, you go out there and knock their socks off. I'll be rooting for you."
"Thanks dude." The Raticate made his way to the competitor's entrance, where he would enter the ice in front of a crowd that, judging from the odds the bookmakers had placed upon his victory, were firmly in his favour. It was a good omen. "I'll make ya all proud." Katnip turned back to me for one last second and shot one of those cheery winks that proved without a doubt that he was now back in firm control of his destiny, before vanishing into the arena, leaving me to make my way up to the stands where the rest of my pokémon were waiting. This was going to be one worth watching! And why shouldn't it have been? If nothing else, Katnip could make for compulsive viewing when on from. And form, I felt, was something the Raticate had in abundance.

"So you've finally turned up." Although Katnip had made his way to the track to a rather generous round of applause, his attention was fixed firmly on one thing and one thing only. His opponent, already waiting for him at the starting blocks. Apparently the powers that be had decided to pit him up against a Delibird. Not the strongest of pokémon by some margin, but it was still an Ice type and would still have the advantage in a race over its home terrain. "You're late." Clearly this pokémon wasn't the most patient of creatures. He had only been late by a few minutes at most!
"Keep yer hair on, would ya? Ya make it sound as if I turned up half an hour late." Katnip tried to get some measure of his opponent. Certainly it didn't seem to be the fittest of creatures, but then looks could be deceiving. And besides, no doubt it had some tricks up its sleeve to swing the odds in its favour.
"Late is late," the pokémon snorted irritably in a fashion that reminded Katnip of Sindel when she was in one of her more uptight moods. He'd heard this kind of tirade before, off the aforementioned Kadabra of course, and it was all he could do to keep a straight face throughout it. "I'd have thought that a pokémon such as yourself would have been more than eager to reach the arena in time!"
"Well I was, but not everyone on me team could get their act tagether in time, okay?" Katnip was beginning to tire of this Delibird. He was getting the distinct impression that it was trying its best to appear superior. Maybe it thought it had a point to prove. Achieving victory against a Dragon Games finalist would have certainly been a major ego boost to any pokémon! But there was no reason at all to act so aloof.
"Sounds a little sloppy for such a supposedly good team..." It was true, alright. No denying it. This particular pokémon seemed almost envious of Katnip, and that envy was coming out in the form of an undue harshness that was beginning to irritate the Raticate. He had just gotten over his frustration over the tournament, he didn't need reminding of it every ten seconds, no matter how indirectly! "I take it you haven't been getting much practise in lately?"
"Right, I've had enough of this!" Katnip hissed directly into his opponent's face, his patience finally snapping. "If yer lookin' fer a fight ya picked the wrong pokémon. I don't mind givin' ya a race if yer up for it, that's what I'm here for, but ya seem ta want ta be beaten ta a pulp on top of everythin' else. If I was you I'd just shut up before I do somethin' we'll both regret." It was all a bluff, of course. Anybody who knew Katnip in the slightest knew that attacking out of malice or anger was the last thing the Raticate would ever do. But the Delibird didn't have the benefit of that knowledge, hence it shrank back and decided it might be a good idea to just stay quiet for a while. "Better." Katnip smirked to himself as the two pokémon took up their positions at the starting line. That was a trick he had picked up from hanging round Milliardo too long. And although Katnip was far more inclined towards direct action than the big mouthed Umbreon, there was no denying the effectiveness of a convincing threat in certain situations. Now he could finally give his full attention to the race ahead of him. It seemed a simple enough prospect. Ten laps of the circuit, and all he had to do was make sure he finished before the Delibird. That didn't seem too difficult, not compared to some of the challenges the messy Raticate had faced in his lifetime. And yet he knew better than anyone that there was no room for complacency. The pokémon trained in Ulthuan ranked amongst some of the most well-trained in the world. One false move could see him lose any chance of victory. Well, that was alright by Katnip. The thrill of competition was why he was here in the first place, wasn't it?
"On your marks..." Apparently it was time to begin, a smart suited official counting down the time until the race began. Every muscle in his body tensed to spring into action the millisecond the command to start was given, Katnip, little eyes were focussed firmly upon the track in front of him, prepared himself for what would no doubt be one hell of an interesting race. A cursory glance over at his opponent confirmed that it too was ready to give it all that it had. The concentration upon its otherwise comical face said that much. "Get set..." Swiftly Katnip returned his attention to the smooth ice in front of him. There was no way he was going to lose! All he needed was a single word, and he would be on his way. And after what seemed like hours, that word finally came. "Go!!!" The two pokémon bolted from their positions at the exact same time, both wanting to gain that crucial inch over their opponent, yet neither really succeeding. The race, it seemed, was on.

Lady Vulpix
8th March 2003, 09:26 AM
Well done, Ade! Take 6 stamps for that great intro! Though I think Tsuyoi may be messing up a little too much. Your team is so much fun to read about! :D ¢¢¢¢¢¢

By the way, 1 Kilometer (1,000 meters) = 0.6214 Miles = 3281 Feet, at least according to this site (http://www.anestesia.com.mx/distance.html).

8th March 2003, 01:00 PM
Hey, Gabi! I've tapped back into my old account by logging in from my aunt's computer that I haven't used since the last time I was here, so everything is back to normal. I do have a few questions though.

When I was here last, there was a club that Connah made up called the Hoenn Gym Leaders. I still have that in my sig, but I don't know if the club is still up and running. I was just wanting to know if I should go ahead and delete that information.

To make this not spam, I'm going to post my battle in a few hours. As soon as I find the scenario.

Lady Vulpix
8th March 2003, 01:10 PM
Welcome back to your old account!
There's ALWAYS a link to the current scenario on the first post of this topic. Whenever the scenario changes, the link is updated.
As for the club, you can ask Connah. He may have forgotten about it.

8th March 2003, 11:22 PM
I’m going to battle in scenario version # 3. I’m going to use Ieal, my Stantler, that was hatched from Lady Vulpix’s Stantler, Iael, and Nala’s Ditto (Gabi, you will finally be able to witness Iael’s son’s battle techniques! Bout time, huh?)

(Jay’s POV)

I woke up before the alarm went off, something that seldom happens. It was 6:55. I didn’t bother going back to bed, for I’d be woken up in five minutes either by my buzzing alarm, or my howling Growlithe and Houndour. I pushed the covers up, and crept my room.

I sneaked into my closet, and scrambled through some clothing. I finally unearthed my favorite pair of jeans from the seemingly mountainous pile of clothing. I slipped the jeans on, which sagged down to my hips, which usually happened with all my pants, since I have no waist.

I then located my leather belt, and slipped it on, it’s ebony color faintly glimmering off the light of the sun. I then came across a t-shirt, which I usually wore under my sweater. It was snowing outside, so this was my casual dress for this type of weather. I found my hooded sweatshirt, and then my alarm went off.

I sauntered over to my nightstand, and turned the alarm off. I tiptoed out of my room, and downstairs, trying as hard as I could not to stir anyone from bed. I didn’t make a sound, walking through the dining room and into the kitchen. I then had to figure out what in the hell I was going to eat.

If you lived in a family like mine, then you were on your own for the majority of the time, especially for breakfast, lunch, AND dinner. My parents were workaholics, my dad researching the newer Pokemon that were said to be found in the newly discovered land of Hoenn; my mom working as a highly important executive for Silph Co. My mom usually was never home, only coming home on some of the weekends. She was relatively far from Blackthorn.

I got out a pan, and the box of Bisquick, and began to make pancakes. I mixed the concoction together, and put it in the pan to cook. It seemed I had disturbed my Pokemons’ peaceful slumber when Cinder crept into the kitchen. He glared at me with his dark eyes. It wasn’t necessarily a bad glare, but I had the feeling that he was still tired. He staggered under the little table near the wall of the kitchen, curled up, and began to sleep.

After a few moments of cooking, Ebony and Blazer stumbled in. They looked up at me, with starvation in their eyes. Since I had just begun making my final pancake, and it would be awhile since it would be finished, I got out the PokeIams, the Pokemon version of Iams dog food. I poured it into a couple of bowls and they began to eat. I waited until my final pancake was finished, and sat at the table.

I poured syrup and butter onto the flapjacks, and began to eat. I watched my two dog Pokemon, gorging themselves with food. They were obviously famished. I guess I didn’t give them enough to eat the night before, though I thought their meal might have been sufficient.

I finished breakfast, and gathered my Pokemon into their Pokeballs. I attached them to the sides of my pant legs, the usual cooltrainer style. I walked outside, and almost felt overwhelmed from the icy air that swept into my lungs. I exhaled, and my breath was clearly visible. I locked the door behind me, before setting off onto my training expedition.

I strutted down the rocky road, my pokeballs jingling at my every step. Many vehicles zoomed past, the usual Monday morning rush hour. There was no school today, since a massive heap of snow landed on Blackthorn overnight. The snow more or less came up to the midsection of my lower leg, which made it harder for me to travel expeditiously. I wondered if any of my friends would be out and about, training their Pokemon. None could be found within my path of vision, so I continued onward. There needed to be a perfect spot to train.

Ieal was going to be my steadfast and ambitious companion for today. He has been waiting forever to be trained. He doesn’t mind, for patience is one of his virtues. I marched downtown, where a commotion had begun.

There was a car crash, due to the ice on the roads. Blisseys and Nurse Joys were everywhere, helping the victims of this fatal wreck. Officer Jenny was also on the scene, getting information on how the accident was caused, and such stuff like that. I didn’t pay one bit of attention to her as she was bossing my around, telling me, a little child as she call me, to get out of the way and go home where I belong. I never took much of a liking to Officer Jenny, but I was cheered up by the kindness of Nurse Joy.

“Jay, how are you doing?” Nurse Joy asked me, holding a first aid kit that had been used on one of the victims a minute ago. Blood was covered on a damp rag.

“I’m fine, thank you, but how did this mess happen?” I asked, trying to gain information. I was a nosy person when it came to town matters. I always wanted to know what was going on.

“Well, it seems to me that one of the cars swerved on some ice while trying to dodge another car that almost rammed it. The driver lost control of the vehicle, and then an oncoming car collided with it,” she told me, scratching her arm.

“Are the drivers all right?” I asked, hoping for the best.

“Well, only one was critically hurt, but it isn’t extremely severe. It will take a few days for her to heal, but the other driver is completely fine, save a few scrapes and scratches. Oh! Sorry to leave like this, Jay, but it’s an emergency, they just pulled a second passenger from the vehicle. Boy, what a morning. See ya!” She hollered.

“Bye, Joy,” I called back, continuing on my way. I thoughts suddenly shifted from the accident to my duty as a trainer. After traveling through town, taking twists and turns within my route, I finally came to my destination… The Pond.

The Pond was my secret training spot, one that only I knew about. It was situated on the outskirts of Blackthorn, to the northeast. It a very nice spot to train. A pond was in the center of circle of grass, which was surrounded by many trees. Almost ever kind of Pokemon could be found here, from Caterpies to Sentrets. I sat down near the pond after brushing the snow and ice off of the log. Sitting on it made my butt cold, but I could bear it. I released Ieal, and waited for a Pokemon to show itself. None came for some time, but I had a feeling that soon, very soon, in fact, that a Pokemon was coming. I spotted a Sentret, and sent Ieal to attack. Sentret evaded, and escaped.

After a few more moments of waiting, a Phanpy revealed itself from the brush. Ieal went after it, trying a Headbutt, but Phanpy dodged and ran away. I could tell that this wasn’t going to be an easy hunt. Suddenly, a Squirtle emerged from the watery depths of the pond.

Ieal, Stantler, lv 5 VS Squirtle, lv 10

This Squirtle looked insanely tough. It raced toward Ieal, trying a Tackle, but Ieal leaped aside. Squirtle may have been tougher, but Ieal had a good attribute to back him up… Cleverness, a trait I have a feeling he got from his mother. Squirtle turned, and confronted Ieal with a low snarl. Ieal kept his ground, in anticipation of another assault. Squirtle let down its head, planning for a Skull Bash. Ieal waited, not moving a muscle, making sure all of his senses were to the max.

Squirtle was tired of hanging around, so it let the Skull Bash fly. Ieal anticipated the attack, and swerved out of the way, letting Squirtle pass through the air. When Squirtle came across Ieal’s path, he let loose with a Headbutt, sending Squirtle soaring across the vicinity of snow. Squirtle beamed at Ieal, annoyance in its evil eyes.

Squirtle ascended to its feet, and sent a hurling Ice Beam toward Ieal. Ieal wasn’t ready for this attack, and got hit across the face. Ieal shook the icy blast from his face, ignoring his fault, not letting it get to him.

Squirtle reared to attack again with a Tackle. Ieal was ready this time. You’d think that the Squirtle would have gotten the clue by now not to attack Ieal physically, for he would counter it. Ieal again swerved out of the way, and let Squirtle have it with a Headbutt.

Ieal caught Squirtle by astonishment, and launched it en route to the earth. Ieal pursued his quarry, attacking it from behind with a Tackle. Squirtle’s HP was dwindling slowly. It kicked Ieal in the face, making Ieal stagger backward. Squirtle rose quickly, and whirled in Ieal’s direction, smacking him across the face with a Rapid Spin.

Ieal was getting worn out, but I knew he would in no way give up. Squirtle reared to attack again, but Ieal jumped aside, smacking it with another Headbutt. Squirtle just didn’t get it, no matter which way it tried to attack Ieal with physical strength, it just couldn’t happen. Squirtle’s HP was getting close to nothing now, as told by my Pokedex.

Ieal was in hot persuit, attacking Squirtle vehemently with an additional Headbutt. Critical Hit! My Pokedex noted. Squirtle ascended, using Ice Beam. Ieal was ready for one this time, and ducked. The Ice Beam caught the tip of Ieal’s antlers, but it did minimal damage.

Ieal charged forth, delivering the final blow. Squirtle attempted to rise, but Ieal kept it down with another Headbutt, with a Tackle followed up.

Ieal grew to level 6!]

Lady Vulpix
9th March 2003, 08:50 AM
Well, J, that story was properly written, but I can't accept it as a valid battle. It didn't fit the current scenario, and not even the 2 previous ones. So I'm afraid you'll have to keep Ieal's level at 5 for now and write something for the current scenario, which is on page 5 of this topic. Sorry.

9th March 2003, 11:11 AM
Was it not properly written for the Scenario number 3, in which I am surrounded by snow, ice, freezing water, and I must battle a level 10 squirtle?

Aipom Of Doom
9th March 2003, 12:09 PM
Originally posted by PokeMaster Jay
Was it not properly written for the Scenario number 3, in which I am surrounded by snow, ice, freezing water, and I must battle a level 10 squirtle?
Yeah, but the scenerio is to have a race, not a battle =/

9th March 2003, 12:53 PM
Ok... I'll just rewrite the battle scene.

AntiAsh Superstar
10th March 2003, 09:09 AM
Tsuyoi messing up too much? Heh, I guess even he has his flaws, tho don't tell him I said that! :D Anyways, here's the rest of the story that I didn't quite get the time to post before having to run off for the weekend. ^_^


GO!!! L27 Raticate v L30 Delibird!

Initially Katnip found the icy surface somewhat disorientating. He wasn’t used to running at high speeds over such slippery terrain, and in some respects it was as much as he could do to keep from skidding into the walls surrounding the track. He didn’t, of course, he was too much of a professional to allow that to happen, but it was more to do with a great deal of self control than it was to do with his skills over ice. For its part, the Delibird was a lot slower, but far more steady in its progress. It had, after all, spent most of its life in icy terrain, it was perfectly adapted to deal with such a race. Unlike Katnip, whose fleshy hindpaws might have been perfectly suited to the kind of impressive acrobatics he was fast gaining a reputation for in battle but offered precious little traction upon the frozen floor.
“Damn it!” The first lap had hardly taken any time at all, but by the time the starting grid came into view again it was obvious that the Delibird actually seemed to be in the lead. Not that Katnip had any intention of letting things remain that way. By now he was slowly beginning to get a hang of travelling upon the ice. He was now making allowances for the lack of traction, and had dropped his earlier hurtling velocity for a pace that allowed for the optimum balance of speed and control. It was still a lot faster than his opponent could manage, and soon Katnip found himself catching up with the Delibird. By the time the two pokémon were halfway around the second lap, they were practically neck and neck.
“You’re not bad!” The Delibird afforded a glance over in Katnip’s direction, the strain showing in its eyes as it desperately attempted to keep that one step ahead of the Raticate. Something that both pokémon knew couldn’t be kept up for long enough to secure its victory, especially if Katnip grew any more used to racing over ice than he was already. “Especially for a creature not designed to do this sort of thing.” A crafty gleam appeared in the Delibird’s eye. Time for it to resort to a little insurance policy it had prepared just in case this sort of thing occurred. “Let me give you a little something for your efforts!” For his part, Katnip was too busy concentrating on keeping up with his opponent and on not stumbling at the crucial moment to pay much attention to what was going on outside his own little world. A mistake, in hindsight, that cost him dearly. If he had been paying more attention to what his opponent was actually doing, he would have noticed the Delibird reach a stubby, arm-like wing into the parcel that all members of its species carried and throw something from it directly into his path. The attack Present was a very unpredictable move at the best of times, but in this case it had exactly the desired effect. The object - and Katnip was going too fast to really pay much attention to exactly what it was, although judging from the pain the impact between it and his sliding toe caused, it was some sort of metal - flew directly into the Raticate’s path. The results were spectacular. One second Katnip was speeding across the ice at quite impressive speeds, the next the entire world was doing cartwheels around his field of vision, and wouldn’t stop until speed and lack of friction caused him to collide painfully with the wooden barriers surrounding the track. Fortunate for him that they weren’t made of something more durable! As it was, the only things really damaged by the trip were the barrier itself - now rather worryingly dented - and Katnip’s chances of winning. The collision had taken time; recovering from the aftermath even longer. And now his opponent was now a good half a lap ahead.
“Clever.” Katnip didn’t even give himself a chance to recover from the incident. The instant the world stopped spinning he was up on his feet again and speeding round the track. It would take more than that to put him out of action! Even if he was probably going to feel quite sore once the adrenaline of the competition had died down. Not even Katnip could smash into a wooden barrier without paying some kind of price! In fact, the toe that had originally collided with the obstacle was already feeling decidedly less than normal. But there was time to worry about damage later. He could still move, and to the Raticate that was reason enough on its own to continue with the race. “Clever, but bloody underhanded!” So that wasn’t strictly fair. The rules stated quite clearly that attacks could be used during the race. Still, it was annoying. The Delibird hadn’t made the best of impressions upon Katnip with its earlier conduct, and this last trick was only lowering it further in his eyes. Well, he could still catch up. There were still a few laps to go. And when he did, he was going to give the pokémon a taste of its own medicine. An eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth, wasn’t that how it went? It might not have been the most constructive of philosophies, but it was one of the more satisfying. And even Katnip had his flaws. He had his pride, and it was a pride that wouldn’t be satisfied until he had exacted his revenge against his opponent. An opponent who, even now, was drawing ever closer into Katnip’s field of vision. He was certainly glad he had the speed advantage! That, coupled with a level of stamina that would have dwarfed that of even the most resilient of pokémon, made it child’s play to make up the lost ground within the space of a single circuit of the course. Soon enough the two pokémon were drawing level again, and with a good four or five laps to go as well.
“Credit where credit’s due, I can see why you got so far in the tournament.” The words were complimentary, but the Delibird’s eyes told a different story once the two pokémon finally drew level again. They were filled with annoyance, if not just a little disgust. This pokémon simply didn’t like Katnip. Which was fine with the Raticate. He didn’t like the Delibird much, either.
“An’ I have ta admit ya sure know how ta take a guy by surprise!” Katnip shot his opponent a grim smile. It wouldn’t have been too difficult to take the lead right now. But no, that wasn’t how he intended to play this one at all. For a start, it would mean letting the Delibird out of his sight, which he had no intention of doing. Not now he knew of its tactics. And there was still the matter of getting revenge for the blow to his pride earlier. It would be a petty satisfaction, but it would be a satisfaction nonetheless. “Not gonna happen again, I’ll tell ya that now!”
“Really. We’ll just see about that.” The Delibird sounded less than certain of Katnip’s proclamation. Already he could see it reaching into the parcel. Good! He had correctly judged the pokémon’s mentality. It had risen to the bait admirably. And now it left itself wide open to attack.
“Yeah. If ya can manage ta get me before I get ya, that is!” What Katnip had in mind was risky on ice, especially when trying to win a race at the same time. It took a special kind of pokémon to jump up in mid-race, spin about, then hit their opponent with an Iron Tail attack before landing and carrying on with the race as if nothing had happened, but since when had Katnip ever been anything other than extraordinary? He managed to pull the stunt off with spectacular success, sending the Delibird skidding backwards across the ice with only three laps left to make up for lost ground. Not that Katnip was the type of creature who would take anything for granted, of course. That still left three laps for some surprise assault. But even so, suddenly his prospects seemed a lot rosier.
“Damn you!” It hadn’t taken long for Katnip’s opponent to recover from the attack. Already, just mere seconds after a manoeuver that had left the crowd gasping with admiration, the Delibird was trying its best to regain lost ground in the only way it knew how. By impeding Katnip’s progress as best it could. Not that the Raticate had any intention of allowing such a thing to happen. For every projectile thrown in his direction, the Raticate nimbly dodged, by now having found his equilibrium upon the slippery ice to such an extent it was as good as racing on a more conventional surface. How he always managed to know when something was being thrown at him, Katnip didn’t really know, and didn’t really care. I had always theorised that all pokémon possessed a degree of psychic power that aided with communication and the learning of new attacks. And if that was true, and if that was aiding his perception now, Katnip was certainly glad he was a pokémon! By now he had all but fled the range of his opponent’s attacks. Now he was in the lead he intended on widening the gap as much as he could! And this race was almost over anyway. Only another 150 metres lay between him and victory. And despite the projectiles that rained around him, each one seemingly falling short of its target, Katnip could sense that the race was his, provided he didn’t make any major slip-ups. No, no bothersome Delibird was going to stand between him and victory. Even one as admittedly intriguing as the one he was currently facing. “I’ll make you pay!” Katnip’s opponent seemed to be growing more frustrated by the second, at least from the sounds of the threats and curses that echoed behind him. The Raticate wasn’t overly concerned with these furious outbursts. The more infuriated the Delibird became, the more careless it grew. And the more careless it grew, the larger the gap between it and Katnip became. Until the final lap finally came around. Until Katnip passed the starting grid for the penultimate time. And by that time his victory was secured. The two pokémon were virtually on opposite sides of the track. There was no way that the Delibird could have caught up with him. But just in case, Katnip pushed himself even further. Even though his every muscle was beginning to ache, even though he had all but pushed himself to his very limits, somehow he managed to dig deep within himself and find reserves of energy that even he didn’t realise he owned. The results were spectacular. His velocity increased tremendously, and for that final stretch it was as if he was in the middle of one of his Quick Attacks, just a blur of brown and white that hurtled past the finish line, only just managing to apply the brakes before he collided with the wall for a second time. That had been close! But it had been worth it. He had finished far earlier than his opponent, who finally managed to complete the chilly course a good ten seconds after Katnip had sat down in the middle of the track for a well-earned rest. For a moment Katnip wondered if the Delibird was going to go over and say something to him, as he had been expecting. But no, it wasn’t that good a loser. It simply slipped away without a word. Well, that was okay by Katnip. He didn’t have much to say to the plump pokémon anyway. All he wanted right now was to rest. And it was a rest well-earned.

Katnip wins!
Katnip grew to L28!

The next event took place in the mid-afternoon, and by that time the weather was taking a turn for the worse, a chilly wind requiring all but those most resistant to cold to take some form of shelter. It was almost as if it had decided to develop a more appropriate temperature for the current surroundings. Much to my annoyance. I had never been too thrilled with the cold. I had no tolerance for any extreme of temperature at all, and this wind was beginning to make my face decidedly numb. Why didn’t I think to bring a coat with some sort of hood? Ah well, too late to think of such things now. Right now the only thing that mattered was making sure the pokémon chosen for the ice hockey were ready to compete, securely tucked away in a makeshift dressing room that amounted to little more than a sparsely-furnished caravan. But at least it was reasonably warm inside, and we could devote our attentions to the task at hand instead of how to combat the ravaging cold of the outside world. Inside this cramped little room of sorts it was just Milliardo, Lucky, Sindel and myself. The rest of my pokémon had elected to go exploring, safe in the knowledge that by now each carried some form of identification. And by now were becoming more than a little notorious anyway. What Espeon could outperform Kirei when it came to that peculiar brand of agreeable hyperness that she had so claimed as her own? Which Wartortle other than Beckham would instinctively seek out the most likely source of partying? And as for Katnip, he was distinctive on sight, the natural untidiness in his image outdoing even mine. The half-chewed ear - a scar from an altercation in his days as a wild pokémon that not even evolution had managed to fix - and the slightly crooked whiskers gave HIM away before his unique way of talking did. No, there was no danger of my pokémon being mistaken for anything other than mine. Which was probably the reason I felt so secure in allowing them their freedoms.
“So do you guys actually have any kind of plan in mind?” I could spend all day ruminating upon my methods as a trainer, leaning casually against the inner wall of the caravan as I currently was, but now simply wasn’t the time. The day was nowhere near over, and there were still challenges to be overcome.
“You tell us! Aren’t you supposed to be the trainer here?” Milliardo cackled, finding my tendency to turn the responsibilities of tactics and battle over to my pokémon rather funny. It certainly wasn’t the way most trainers behaved! “Nah, I say we go out and take it as it comes. That’s your kind of strategy, isn’t it? And as much as it pains me to say it, you prove that it works pretty admirably.” The Umbreon regarded me with a mixture of bemusement and respect. What must I have looked like to others? A rather messy, dark-clothed creature with long, uncontrollable hair, battered glasses and an image that never seemed to quite make its mind up as to whether it wanted to swing towards goth or punk. How in the world could such a person as myself command anything other than contempt from a vitriolic creature such as Milliardo? Somehow I had managed to win his friendship, though, and for all his cruel humour, for all the notoriously awkward facets of his personality, the Umbreon was amongst the loyalest of creatures once you finally managed to earn his friendship. This was a creature who would undoubtedly risk everything for those he cared about, and it was a creature I was proud to call a friend. “Although it would help to know who we’re up against, but no, somebody couldn’t be bothered to pay attention could they?”
“That’s a little harsh, isn’t it?” Lucky admonished his Umbreon friend. For some reason that nobody could quite understand, Lucky was alone in being spared Milliardo’s harsh tongue. Even Pandora fell victim to his scathing humour at times. But Lucky? No, Milliardo was actually nice to Lucky. It meant that the Meowth could actually get away with reprimanding the Umbreon at times. “Nobody’s perfect.”
“And I’m more flawed than most, huh?” I laughed out loud, flattered by Lucky’s instant defence. “Don’t worry about it. The time where I’d have taken offence at that’s long gone now, and we all know it.” I petted the Meowth reassuringly before returning my attention to the self-appointed team captain fro this event. And why shouldn’t he have been? There was some foundation to his earlier boasting after all! “What’s wrong, Milliardo, don’t you like surprises or something?”
“Of course. I just like to plan ahead a bit. Unlike some people I could mention.” This kind of verbal jousting was becoming all too common these days. Neither of us could offend the other now. And we both knew it. Maybe the two most insecure creatures on the planet were finally coming to terms with their own fallibility after all! “Actually, it doesn’t bother me in the slightest, we’re going to win anyway.”
“You shouldn’t get so cocky, you know.” Sindel rolled her eyes. Sometimes she felt as if she were the only truly sane one on the team! Which, as far as having less hang-ups than her companions went, was probably true. “Who knows WHAT we’ll be up against?”
“Well you could always put that nosy part of you to good use for once and find out for us. Had that thought never occurred to you, Thingy?” Milliardo turned to me. “Honestly, Ade, I don’t know what you see in her at all. What use is a Kadabra who can’t even think of the blindingly obvious? I mean, I always thought they were supposed to be smart creatures. Trust us to get lumbered with the slowest of the species.”
“Can’t you give the poor girl a break for once, Milliardo?” I sighed. Sometimes the Umbreon forgot where the line was between teasing and being offensive, and it was quite clear from the fire in Sindel’s eyes that he was on the wrong side of that line. Then again, it happened with such alarming frequency that you had to wonder if he simply just enjoyed offending everyone he met. “As good an idea as it is, not many would have thought of it. It’s not blindingly obvious.”
“Yes it is! What’s the point in having a busybody on the team if they can’t even think to find out the things we actually could do with knowing?” Eventually the frosty silence in the room began to detract from the Umbreon’s conversation, and even he was forced to concede that maybe he was being too harsh on Sindel. “Yeah, okay, maybe that sort of sneaky idea’s the kind of thing that pops only into my head. Can’t I at least have some credit for coming up with a good plan?”
“Only if you apologise,” Sindel huffed, quite clearly not in the best of moods with her antagonistic teammate. Her eyes were still glaring daggers at Milliardo, who was seemingly unperturbed by her murderous stare.
“I never apologise, deal with it,” came the casual response, delivered in such an offhand way it was as if nothing had happened at all.
“So I noticed.” Sindel finally decided she had far better things to waste her emotions on than Milliardo, and turned her attention back to the rest of the group. “Mind you, it is quite a good idea even if it did come from a total jerk. Give me a minute or two, I’ll try and find out what we’re going to be up against.” Silence descended upon the room, nobody daring to so much as breathe lest it disturb the Kadabra as she tried to focus her energies upon finding the required information amongst the bustle of all of the thoughts and psychic emissions that came from the surrounding area. It was hard work, that was for sure. It required immense concentration and an even greater awareness to pinpoint a likely source of information amongst so many living beings. Most would have stood no chance at all. But then again, this was Sindel, and psychic eavesdropping was her speciality. And sure enough, within minutes the Kadabra had opened her eyes again, wearing an expression of triumph. “Okay, I’ve got it. It took a while, but I managed to pinpoint the thoughts of the person in charge of organising the individual competitions.”
“Great! So what are we up against?” Lucky was impressed. Sindel’s powers never failed to amaze him, being as they were so much more direct and powerful than the subtle, almost spooky way Kirei’s psychic abilities manifested themselves. Telepathy and teleportation were far easier to understand than otherworldly unions and psychically-enhanced luck, after all!
“Well, if I heard correctly - and I might not have done, I don’t think even an Alakazam could have blocked out all the interference that’s out there - the team against us will be a Totodile, a Seadra and a Poliwag.”
“A SEADRA???” Milliardo couldn’t help himself. He almost collapsed on the spot from laughing. “Oh my God. I gotta see this. How the hell do you get a pokémon that’s only any good in water to do anything on an ice rink?”
“I’m not too sure.” Sindel shrugged, her tone calm. Apparently she had forgiven Milliardo for his earlier cruelty. “Seems a little weird to me as well. Maybe they’ll put it in goal and carve out a pool for it in front of the goal. It’s not the oddest thing they’re going to have to deal with, though. From what I gathered just then there’s a fair few Water types competing in events that would have difficulty moving outside of water.”
“Interesting.” I mused things over. If this had been a battle we would have won easily. Milliardo’s Hidden Power and Lucky’s Thunderbolt would have seen to that on their own. But this wasn’t a battle, and taking your opponent out of the game was frowned upon. Still, I was certain that we could win this one. It was all about brains, all about cunning. And that, fortunately, was something this little group of pokémon had in abundance.

Eventually the clock finally ticked round to match time. By which time, anxious not to turn up late to two events in a row, we were already at the rink. It was the same place as last time, but the barriers had been rearranged and markings applied to the ice. And, sure enough, a small pool had been cut into the ice in front of one of the goals. Apparently Sindel’s guess had been spot on. Nobody would have ever guessed that it had been a racetrack mere hours ago. My pokémon were already out upon the ice, adjusting themselves to the ice. Lucky and Milliardo seemed to be having quite a good time sliding about, although Sindel looked less than happy, levitating inches above the floor near the goal. From my position in the front row, the rest of my team now surrounding me, I could just about make out the source of the Kadabra’s grievances, because as ever she was being very vocal about the subject. Apparently her feet offered very little protection against the freezing floor, and her discomfort was only enhanced by Milliardo finding the whole situation really funny. Poor Sindel. She never seemed to get a break at all.
“Ignore the moron, Sindel!” Apparently I wasn’t the only one who had overheard the problems my Kadabra was having, because sure enough Pandora was yelling her own brand of encouragement over to the team. “If he makes fun of you one more time just freeze his legs up with that Hidden Power of yours! See how he likes it! It’s alright, I know Ember, I can thaw him out again!” The reaction her comments received was mixed. Sindel and Lucky just burst out laughing, whereas Milliardo make as obscene a gesture as an Umbreon could make in the direction of his girlfriend. Not a smart move by any stretch of the imagination. Not when delivered to Pandora, whose mood swings were the stuff of legend. All of a sudden all bonhomie disappeared from the Houndour’s tone. “YOU DO THAT AGAIN YOU BASTARD AND I’M NOT EVEN GOING TO WAIT UNTIL YOU’RE FROZEN BEFORE I ROAST YOU!!!” Pandora practically screamed the words out, before turning around sharply and storming off, Pearl following soon after to try and calm her down. Sometimes, I felt, Milliardo did seem to forget just how easy it was to offend the Houndour. Especially for him. She loved him. And every little slip up, every time he lost his temper or simply said the wrong thing, her insecurities would blow the problem out of all proportion. She would take it all as a personal attack. The worrying thing was that I couldn’t see this situation changing without a great deal of time and effort. It required Milliardo to learn tact, and Pandora to stop being so sensitive. Neither of which were ever really liable to happen. All I could do now was hope that Pearl could cheer Pandora up in the meantime, and watch the match about to happen unfold.

“What the hell did I do?” Milliardo was confused. He had all but forgotten about the match he was supposed to be playing now. He hadn’t even noticed that their opponents were already making their way onto the ice. His thoughts were on Pandora, and Pandora alone. The two had clashed far more bitterly than that before today, and the Houndour hadn’t reacted quite so violently. It didn’t make sense, any of it.
“Well, Milliardo, call it a hunch but when you as good as flip the creature who loves you off, of course they’re going to take offence.” Sindel sighed. She knew full well that Dark types were supposed to beyond the comprehension of psychics like herself. They were supposed to overcome them with confusion and trickery. But these two gave her a headache without even trying! Was being an insecure head case a prerequisite for that group of pokémon? “Anyway, mind on the job, you can worry about making amends AFTER we’ve won this match. You and Lucky go out and score, I’ll defend the goal here.”
“Sure.” Normally Milliardo would have engaged Sindel in a three hour argument about her being bossy. He wasn’t the type who took orders - or indeed simple instructions - very well at all. But he was distracted, and simply obeyed without question or argument, taking up a position near the front where Lucky had already been greeting their opponents.
“Oh, hi!” The Meowth greeted Milliardo as he approached, but soon the chirpiness disappeared. He cocked his head to one side gently, and looked at Milliardo with empathic eyes. “Are you alright?” Lucky asked with some concern. “You look terrible.”
“Me? Of course I am!” The Umbreon shook his head as if to clear away the cobwebs. “Just a bit of a headache. It’ll pass. Pain’s all relative anyway. It doesn’t bother me much at all.”
“Right.” Lucky sounded disbelieving, but he knew better than to push the subject. They had bonded surprisingly well, for reasons both understood deep inside yet to this day remained unspoken, but he was no Pearl. He didn’t even dare try penetrate Milliardo’s defences. Especially not in public. “Oh, yeah, these are our opponents. Carla and Sheol. Guys, this is Milliardo.”
“It’s a pleasure.” The Totodile, Sheol, nodded his head politely. But Milliardo was in no mood for pleasantries. His back was up as it was, and suddenly every little thing was beginning to irk him. The coldness of the ice seeping through even the padding on his paws. The fact that his every move was being witness by a crowd of hundreds. Even the detached manners of the Totodile in front of him were rubbing the Umbreon up the wrong way. It was a simple enough equation. Pandora was in a bad mood. So Milliardo was also in a bad mood. And Milliardo in a bad mood would look for any excuse to pick a fight.
“Yeah, I’ll bet.” The Umbreon snorted, taking a step back. “I don’t see why we even have to do this introduction thing. We’ll never see each other again in our lives, and you can bet your last dollar I’ll have forgotten all about you by the time I leave this rink. Let’s just cut the talk and get on with it. My headache’s getting worse by the minute, and I really need a lie down or to throw either myself or somebody else off a cliff, one or the other.”
“Milliardo, are you sure you’re up to this?” Lucky was concerned. He hadn’t seen Milliardo in this foul a mood for a long time! “We can always get Scratchy in if you’re not feeling well.”
“Absolutely not! I’d rather drop right here than have Mr. ‘Sleep, sleep and shun everybody else’ take my place!” Milliardo was getting angry now, and the Meowth decided to drop the subject. He gave an apologetic shrug to his opponents, before returning his attention to the Umbreon behind him.
“Alright, have it your way. Just try and be nice during this match, please?”
“I’m an Umbreon. I don’t do ‘nice’.” Milliardo looked all but ready to pounce. The look in his eyes was so intense it was scary. “Now are you going to get this match started or do I have to? Bear in mind I’m very short sighted and get pucks and pokémon very easily mixed up...”
“Alright. You win.” Lucky shuddered. This was not exactly his kind of situation. He hated conflict. And Milliardo seemed determined to make a simple game of hockey into an all-out war. No, Lucky would have rather been anywhere other than in this rink at this time, but what could he do? He was here now, and the only option was to play on, and hope that the Umbreon didn’t become TOO out of control. Milliardo was a smart creature, certainly. But why did Lucky have this horrible feeling that everything was going to go horribly, horribly wrong here?

GAME ON!!! L18 Kadabra, L17 Meowth & L14 Umbreon v L20 Totodile, L20 Poliwag & L20 Seadra!

It was up to Lucky to make the opening shot. He, the Totodile and Sindel were all equipped with hockey sticks. Whereas Milliardo, the Poliwag and the Seadra had to use their powers to hit the puck, unable as they were to grasp such an implement. However, at least Lucky could give the puck a satisfying smack with his stick, sending it skidding across the ice and letting the game commence. All pokémon began to race towards the speeding disc, apart from Lucky who had the foresight to get into a position where he could receive the puck again. He just hoped that Milliardo wasn’t distracted enough to forget to get into a position where he could intercept the puck. Fortunately the Umbreon, as annoyed, as confused and as distracted as he was, was no slouch. He knew when to get his mind on the job, and was already speeding towards the puck. He had outpaced the Totodile in no time, although the Poliwag was a sprightlier opponent and beating her to the puck was going to be hard. Not that Milliardo had any intention whatsoever of allowing a mere Poliwag to best him. The instant he realised that she was going to reach the puck before him he called upon his natural powers to do his work for him, his shadow suddenly extending towards the puck at an incredible speed and knocking it well away from her reach. Straight, as it happened, to where Lucky was waiting expectantly, giving the speeding puck a hefty blow that sent it spinning towards the goal. But things were never quite as simple as they first appeared, and quite why a Seadra had been placed in goal was now apparent. The water pokémon simply spat out a Water Gun attack that hit the incoming missile head on and knocked it deftly away from its intended target. Lucky could only stare in disbelief at the spectacle he had just witnessed. It was one thing to be able to strike a target as small as a hockey puck with such skill, but totally another to strike it when it was moving at an immense speed. These pokémon were clearly much better than he had been expecting. And it filled his heard with dread. Did such a disjointed assembly of characters as the team he was proud to call his really stand any sort of a chance against pokémon capable of pulling off such impressive feats of skill?
“Hey, moron, you’re letting them get control!” It took a less than friendly nudge from Milliardo to return Lucky’s attention back to the match at hand, drifting as it was to concentrate fully on the spectacle of the manoeuver he had just witnessed. But apparently the Umbreon had no intention of letting Lucky’s attention wander for too long. His attention was upon the match at hand, and it was a match in which the only thing stopping an early goal for the opponents was Sindel’s defensive abilities. Milliardo hoped that the Kadabra had enough wits about her to be able to block the shot that now must inevitably be coming, the Totodile called Sheol now having a clear shot at goal. And what a shot it was! No pokémon relying on physical means to block it would have stood a chance. It was just as well that Sindel didn’t have to rely upon physical means. She had her psychic powers, and they were more than enough to handle the job. The speeding puck ground to a halt just inches away from the goal boundaries, and was flung backwards at twice the speed. What had been a simple hockey puck just seconds ago was now transformed into a deadly metallic missile that went screaming past the heads of all the pokémon involved in the match. Not a one of them was insane enough to try and halt its progress. The results of such actions would have been painful to say the least. Even the skilled Seadra in goal realised the best course of action would be to reluctantly concede the goal, and it ducked into its pool just seconds before the puck slammed hard into the goal, smashing past the boundaries and lodging itself into the far wall with a loud crack that drew gasps of awe from the crowd assembled to witness this spectacle. “Not bad, Thingy!” Reasoning that it was going to take a few moments to dislodge the puck from its new resting place, Milliardo skated over to his teammate. “If I didn’t know better I’d think you actually had some degree of power in that malfunctioning little brain of yours.”
“I think that could be the most backhanded compliment you’ve delivered to me yet, Milliardo.” Sindel rolled her eyes. “And I didn’t even think it was possible to improve on your previous efforts.”
“Well I’m just full of surprises, aren’t I?”
“That’s one way of putting it.” A nagging thought began to pull at Sindel’s attention, and she had grown too familiar with her own abilities not to heed such warnings. Abruptly she returned her gaze to the icy field of competition. “You’d best get back, they’ve recovered the puck now.”
“I don’t need telling twice!” The Umbreon bolted back to his position, preparing for whatever tricks the opposition had up their sleeves. No doubt by formulating tricks twice as ingenious and a hundred times more effective. Sindel shook her head in bemusement. For all his annoying habits, the Umbreon was a very useful creature to have on the team. If you could put up with him for long enough to appreciate his more endearing traits, that is.

Elsewhere, outside the ice rink, other pokémon were having to deal with the results of Milliardo’s less endearing characteristics. It wasn’t exactly a job Pearl relished, racing round all of the likely hiding places in the area - of which there were many - trying to locate an errant Houndour. It was cold, and she was tired, and even more annoyingly she was missing the opportunity to watch her friends in action. But to go back now would mean leaving a distraught Pandora alone. Something that the Ninetales had no intention of doing. Yes, it wasn’t the most welcoming of jobs, but Pearl wasn’t too annoyed with either pokémon. She had long since realised that Pandora had never been fully in control of her emotions. And as for Milliardo, all he was guilty of was forgetting that little fact. Which was typical Milliardo. Act first, think later. For such a cunning creature he could certainly be tactless at times!
“Damn it, where are you?” Pearl muttered, the biting cold beginning to get to her. Some Fire types had enough inner heat to withstand all kinds of extreme temperatures, but Pearl’s acclimatisation to heat just meant that she felt the cold all the more. Even her thick coat wasn’t helping that much. And as for her paws, she could hardly feel them anymore. Not that she really noticed. Her first thoughts were for her friend. A friend who she would have almost ran past had it not been for the faint sound of sniffling emanating from underneath a particularly tall, circus-style caravan decked in black and red. “Pandora?” Pearl ducked her head underneath, and sure enough found her own ruby eyes meeting a pair that were as pitiful as it was possible to get.
“I know. That was pathetic even for me, wasn’t it?” The Houndour moved over to allow Pearl to come and sit with her. To be honest she was glad of the company. Any longer on her own and who knows what she would have done? “I should know by now that he doesn’t really mean it, right? But it still hurts. Maybe one day I’ll teach myself to stop getting into these situations, but you know what a masochist I am.”
“Never mind that, what you need to do is stop letting him get to you. Like you say, you know very well he doesn’t mean any of it. In his own stupid little way he loves you, you should hold on to that thought.” Pearl wrapped Pandora in her tails, partly as a means of comfort, partly as security against the Houndour trying any of the stunts that had given those close to her so much worry. When Pandora got depressed, she turned to pain as a release from her worries. And right now Pearl was looking at one very depressed Houndour indeed. Even now the tears were silently trickling down her cheeks. “If it’s any consolation it really looks like he’s regretting his actions.” Pearl studied Pandora’s face for a moment. If the eyes were the windows to the soul, then Pandora’s were the most transparent pieces of glass the world had ever known. She found it impossible to hide anything. Because if her volatile personality didn’t give the game away, those expressive eyes certainly did. “But that’s not all that’s bothering you, is it? Tell me what’s wrong. It’ll do you good to let it out.”
“Every time I try and let it out somebody either yells at me or starts looking at me as if I need committing.” Pandora shot Pearl a weak smile, as if trying to cover up the hurt, but in the end it simply became too much. All of those emotions, they couldn’t be contained any longer, and the Houndour suddenly buried herself in Pearl’s soft fur and wept. For what seemed like an eternity the two pokémon stayed there, Pandora releasing all of the tensions and sorrows that the world had deemed fit to throw at her, and Pearl simply staying silent amidst the shadows of their hiding place, content to keep quiet until her friend had finished unloading her emotions. Sometimes there was nothing like a good cry to release your inner demons. But eventually Pandora stopped her sobbing, and looked up at Pearl with tear-stained eyes. “Okay, confession time, I guess.”
“Go ahead.” Pearl nodded soberly. What kind of tale was she liable to hear?
“I try not to let it get to me when Milliardo starts, but it’s so hard. It seems to me like every time I get close to anyone they either die or end up hating me. You don’t have any idea what that’s like, do you? Watching everyone you love desert you like that.” For a second it looked as if Pandora was going to start crying again, but with a supreme effort she managed to control it. “Sometimes I’m just worried that Milliardo really will start to hate me. God knows I deserve it.”
“Stop being ridiculous! Things can’t be that bad, surely!”
“Maybe not, but it just upsets me to think about it. It’s true, though, if I get attached to things fate likes to use them to slap me in the face. Maybe it’s just getting revenge for all the times I’ve defied it. Did I ever tell you about my father?”
“Didn’t he run off to join Team Rocket? I think I remember running into him at some point.”
“I’ll bet he really laid on the sorrowful, haunted creature act for you, didn’t he?” Pandora laughed, but it was a hollow, bitter laugh. “I used to adore him when I was little. He always seemed so wise and knowledgeable. He’d always talk all this wonderful bull**** about dreams, and me being the good little girl I swallowed it all. Then something came over him one day. It was as he changed overnight. Up until that day he’d been quite the kind creature. He’d always taken good care of our little family. But then he stopped. Said he had to travel away, that his dreams had told him that he had to go, that he would have to spend some time in the services of evil. He said it was necessary. That it’d all work out in the end. Of course none of us wanted him to leave, but he wasn’t having any of it. He upped and left without a single thought for what we thought.” There was a real malice in Pandora’s tone, a real anger. And the more Pearl heard of this tale the more she found that anger justified. “My mother was a lot like me, you know, very emotional. She’d turn into a complete wreck at times. I think I’m turning into her, and that worries me, but that’s another story. When dad left she just withered away. She broke completely. Wouldn’t eat, wouldn’t sleep. And rather unsurprisingly she died. He killed her! If it wasn’t for his bloody stupid dreams and his even stupider obsession with them she’d still be alive, damn it!” The tears were flowing again, and it took a few moments before Pandora composed herself enough to carry on. “That was a year ago to this day. So it’s not really Milliardo or anything. It’s just that time of year I have to get upset.” The Houndour sniffed hard, trying her best to stay strong, refusing for once to let her tears get the better of her. “I’m a jerk, aren’t I? If Milliardo really did hate me I can’t say I’d blame him. Who in their right mind would want an unpredictable, emotional wreck like me?”
“Clearly Milliardo does,” Pearl commented, still trying to get her head around what she had been told. No wonder Pandora frequently fought so hard against her visions! She had only ever known prophecy to bring misery. “But please, you’ve nothing to beat yourself up over. I can understand you being upset, but you shouldn’t direct your sorrows inwardly. I’ve seen far too much of the consequences of that in my life, and I’m not going to let you go trough it all any longer. Look. You’ve got friends who love you. Things are going right now. Just let the past go. And I’m not saying that’s going to be easy, but I’m sure it’s the best thing you can do.”
“You’re right. It isn’t going to be easy. Not one little bit.” Pandora stared off into space for a second, as if she was considering the wisdom of Pearl’s advice. “We should get back,” the Houndour said finally. “Knowing Milliardo I’ve probably really put him off his game by storming out like that. Not that I really care, he could use a lesson in humility, but...” The pokémon really didn’t need to say any more. Yet again the eyes said more than the words could ever hope to do.
“That sounds like a plan to me.” Pearl nodded, somewhat relieved that events had been resolved so quickly. Sometimes Pandora could prove to be a very complicated character to deal with. Yet other times, such as this one, she was almost surprisingly open. It all went with the whole paradox of her personality as a whole. At least she seemed calmer now, and wasn’t that what Pearl had come to accomplish? “Come on, let’s get back. If we’re really lucky we might still turn up in time to catch the end of the match. What do you say? Want to see Milliardo bring us another victory?” The Ninetales cocked her head pleasantly at her companion, her body language displaying the very perfection of friendliness. How could Pandora, always grateful to anyone who would offer their support for more than ten seconds, refuse such an invitation?
“Sounds good to me,” came the eventual reply.

AntiAsh Superstar
10th March 2003, 09:12 AM
The two pokémon were indeed in time to catch the end of what had proven to be an exceptionally gruelling, drawn out match. The two teams were practically equals in terms of skill. For every inspired trick that Milliardo could pull with his mastery of the shadows, his Totodile opponent would match it with his superior abilities on ice. For every feat of agility Lucky pulled out of the bag, the Poliwag would use a quite alarming combination of speed and accuracy to counter. And as for the pokémon at either side of the rink, well, they were pretty much impossible to get past. The Seadra’s accuracy and Sindel’s formidable psychic powers meant that very few shots were allowed to enter the goal area, and those that did were the result of fluke luck more than anything else. So it had been quite a spectacular, albeit occasionally frustrating, match. And now, after what seemed like hours, the score was tied at four goals each. The next goal would decide the entire match.
“Dammit!” Milliardo had never been known for his patience, and right now it was being tested to its limits. Only his natural desire to stifle any excess of emotion was stopping him from assaulting his opponents on the spot. How much easier it would have been if he could have just hurtled the puck into the goal riding upon the largest Shadow Ball he could muster! But no, he was stuck playing this stupid game, facing stupid opponents alongside the stupidest teammates he could think of this side of Scratchy. To his eyes they never managed to do anything right. Every slip could have been avoided with just a little thought. Or so it seemed to the Umbreon. In reality, most of the mistakes the team had made - and to their credit there had been very few - were due largely to the fact that Milliardo was playing with one eye on the stands, constantly watching should Pandora return. “Right. That does it. Last chance. Think you can actually manage to intercept a really sneaky pass, Lucky?”
“What do you mean, ‘a really sneaky pass’?”
“You’ll see soon enough, I’ve got one last trick up my sleeves. But it means no more mistakes.” Lucky bit his lip. The temptation to comment on how it had in fact been the Umbreon who was making the mistakes was immense. But that would have caused unnecessary friction. Instead Lucky concluded he would have to accept being the scapegoat if it meant keeping the peace. “And...” Milliardo trailed off, his eyes elsewhere. For a moment Lucky wasn’t sure what was going on. Then he cast his gaze in the direction his friend was staring in, and suddenly it all became clear. Pandora was sat amongst the audience once again. She still seemed slightly sad, but she was there. And maybe her presence would make all the difference. “And we’re going to win this. No doubts about it. You get the puck, you pass it to me and leave the rest to me. I’ll take care of the entire opposition in seconds. You just have to tap the thing into the net at the end. Simple, huh?”
“It’d be simpler if you told me EXACTLY what you were planning!”
“Now, now, Lucky, where would be the fun in that?” Milliardo grinned, that grin that was in turns comforting yet deeply disturbing. “We’ve no time. They’re coming. You’re the best at intercepting them, you get me that puck, you hear? I’ll be waiting!” Lucky really didn’t have any time to argue. Already the opposing Poliwag was racing towards their goal, batting the puck ahead of her with her tail. Well, it was now or never! Mustering all of the speed that his body could muster, Lucky shot forward, and in one smooth motion knocked the puck away from his opponent, sending it speeding in the direction that Milliardo was already heading for. For his part, Milliardo kept possession of the puck with admirable competence. He wasn’t going to screw this up, not in front of Pandora! He was going to win this one with style. A petty form of atonement, maybe, but it was the best plan he could think of right now. And nothing was going to stand in his way. “Out of my way!” Every time one of the opposing team attempted to regain possession they found themselves slipped past, or simply bowled straight over by the Umbreon’s impassioned charge. So he was being rough. He didn’t care if it meant victory! “Okay Lucky, let’s give this a go!” The trick was simple enough in concept, although it required a great deal of effort on the Umbreon’s part. He could merge with the shadows easily enough. This was simply the reverse of that ability. Take the shadow cast by the puck, give it substance, and throw THAT at the goal. In the meantime the actual puck would be passed over to Lucky, who would score the winning goal whilst the Seadra was busy fending off the fake target. It was risky, of course, and it hinged upon every piece of the jigsaw slotting perfectly into place. Risky, but possible. And right now Milliardo was fresh out of inspiration. This was the only plan he had left. Concentrating hard, the Umbreon succeeded in separating puck from shadow. And with this most gruelling part of the plan out of the way it was childs play to put the rest of it into action. In fact, it ended up working better than Milliardo could have hoped. Lucky had been watching with interest and was soon wise to his strategy. So the timing was executed with almost flawless precision. As soon as the Seadra was preparing to swat the shadowed puck out of the way, the real one was speeding towards the goal at a speed close to impossible to stop. There was no way the water pokémon could have altered its target, no matter how skilled it may have been in using its attacks. All it could do was watch as the puck smashed into the net, and its chances of victory vanished in an instant.
“Alright guys! Way to go!” It was as much as I could do to stop myself from leaping the barrier and hugging my pokémon where they stood on the ice. I had been impressed by their performance to say the least. But my opinion was of little relevance. Especially to Milliardo, who only really sought approval from one creature in particular.
“Well?” The Umbreon made his way towards Pandora cautiously, as if afraid that any sudden movements would cause her to run off again. “Did we do well or what?”
“You did well.” Pandora tried her best to remain composed, but it was hard. In her mind the earlier incident had been entirely her fault. So it was a struggle not to be overcome with regret. “Milliardo, I...”
“Forget it.” Milliardo shook his head. “What’s done is done and all that crap. I’m just glad you’re alright now, that’s all. Don’t go running off on me again, okay? You worry me.”
“You mean you’re capable of... oh, sorry. Habit.” The Houndour offered a weak smile. “You’re too good a target.”
“So are you, but for totally different things. If you don’t mind me slipping into Kasumi mode. Which you should do if you had any sense. Kasumi mode is frightening.” Suddenly Milliardo felt more comfortable all of a sudden, almost enough to forget his earlier bad mood entirely. Then again, that was what Pandora did to him, wasn’t it? Volatile she may well have been, but he could forgive her faults. He loved her. What else really mattered?

We win!
Sindel grew to L19!
Lucky grew to L18!
Milliardo grew to L15!

“Right! So let’s get this straight.” Once again we were in the changing rooms waiting for the course to be prepared for the day’s final event. Well, actually, it was Kirei, Lucky, Adreena and myself. Getting ready for the final challenge awaiting us. Or awaiting Kirei, at least. It was just a shame that it sounded so ambiguous. “A kilometre of snow and cold water, five targets, 500 metres of ice and one battle? Umm, call me stupid but it’s not really very clear on what you’re actually supposed to do here, is it?” Kirei frowned. She liked a good challenge almost as much as Katnip did, but she also liked to know what she was getting herself into. Which the promotional flyer for the event didn’t seem all too keep on explaining. It was a good job, then, that I had been asking around earlier, and for once actually knew roughly what was going on. No doubt Milliardo would have had a mockingly astonished response for that one, but fortunately he wasn’t here. The Umbreon had taken his leave to talk things over with Pandora, leaving me with just the more agreeable members of my team to deal with. Which was nice. There was a lot to be said for friendly conversation, even if heated debates did have their moments of entertainment.
“I think this is how it works. You race over the snow and water, knock down any targets that present themselves, then you hit the ice, swiftly take out your opponent before the finish line and trot home to victory.” It seemed like a rather strange little event. But then again I really had little care for sports myself. Most of them seemed far too complicated for my liking at the best of times.
“Sounds fun.” Kirei grinned, finally comprehending. “So we’re not allowed to start attacking each other until we’re on the ice then? Then it’s fair game?”
“That’s the impression I got, yeah.” I returned the grin. “Kirei, did I ever tell you that sometimes you start sounding worryingly like Katnip?”
“Nonsense! I’m FAR better spoken than he is!”
“That’s a matter for debate.” Adreena chuckled quietly from her position curled up in the corner of the room. Truth be told she had only come along in the hope of meeting up with Tamotsu, but apparently her feral lover was indisposed today. At least she could still watch her little sister in action. In some ways the Vaporeon admired how well Kirei had adjusted to the life of a battling pokémon. It was a life she simply couldn’t understand, so Kirei’s successes were all the more remarkable to Adreena for that. “Nobody can understand you when you start getting hyper. Granted, your grammar is far better than Katnip’s, but...”
“Yeah, yeah, I know, I’m more insane than he is. So what? Sanity’s overrated. Right, Lucky?”
“I’m not even letting myself get dragged into this one!” Lucky shook his head in bemusement. “Shouldn’t we be talking more about the race than about how nutty you are?”
“Yeah. Great plan. That’s why I love you, you’ve always got your mind on what really matters. I know I’d be hopeless without somebody around to remind me what I should be doing!”
“Sounds familiar!” I chipped in my contribution to this discussion of sorts, even though I knew Lucky had a point, that our focus should be elsewhere. This was the effect Kirei had on others. Her attitude was totally infectious. “So that’s why I connected with you so well!”
“Come to think of it you two are like peas in a pod at times!” Lucky giggled, finding the conversation’s rambling nature more funny than anything. Then again, he was used to it. Anybody else would have probably found it highly irritating. “Like in this getting distracted business. Remember, there’s a race to win, isn’t there?”
“Oh yeah, there is.” Kirei suddenly seemed to remember what she was here for, and her gaze hardened accordingly. “What am I fighting? A Squirtle isn’t it?”
“How should I know? They haven’t announced the lineups yet!”
“They haven’t?” Kirei looked puzzled. “But I’m sure somebody said I was up against a Squirtle somewhere along the line. Didn’t they?” The Espeon looked around the room for some confirmation of this, but found only blank stares. Which only served to perplex her even further. “They didn’t? Why the hell am I so sure I’ll be up against a Squirtle, then? Maybe these giant ears of mine overheard something they weren’t supposed to.”
“Maybe,” I nodded, squatting down to be at a better level with this pokémon who seemed a strange blend of fox and cat. Except in Kirei’s case it seemed more fox than anything. Her loud, boisterous nature saw to it that any feline traces were removed instantly! “Or maybe it’s this.” I reached over and tapped the jet black jewel protruding from the Espeon’s head, the focal point of all her powers, causing her to start slightly. “What’s wrong?”
“Nothing. That just feels really weird, that’s all.” Kirei blinked several times. “Nobody’s ever actually touched that before. It was quite nice, actually. You’re probably right, though. I’ve picked the information up without even realising it. I should know by now it only ever does anything for me when I’m not actually asking it to.” The Espeon shrugged as best as she could. Clearly thinking about such matters wasn’t something she was exceptionally good at. “Anyway, we’d best be going soon, hadn’t we? The race will be on in a minute. And I’ve gotta win that thing.”
“Sounds about right to me!” I stood up again and gestured to the half-open door. “Ladies first, then.”
“That means Adreena first, I’ve never been very good at being a lady.” Kirei shot her sister a rueful glance, but then her mood picked up again in an instant. “Hey, Ade?”
“If I win, would you mind getting someone to polish my stone up a little?” The Espeon broke into her broadest smile. “Call me a hedonist if you like but I think I could get used to that!”
“Whatever you like. Just do your best, okay?” Kirei was certainly one of a kind! Then again, weren’t all of my team? We were a motley crew of characters, that was for sure! Yet somehow we had managed to survive against all the odds. We were survivors. And we were going to keep getting better. That was a certainty.

It came as something of a surprise to find that Kirei had been spot on in her guesses about her opponent. We had arrived at the track just as the PA system called us for our race, and sure enough a single Squirtle was waiting for us on the course as the crowds filed in to witness this latest attraction.
“Good luck!” I managed to call over to Kirei before she bounded over to meet her opponent without so much as a word of explanation. That was Kirei for you! Excitable to a fault. Even now she was introducing herself to the Squirtle, who seemed rather overwhelmed by the sudden appearance of this cute yet talkative creature.
“Whoa, whoa, whoa. Back up a bit and start from the beginning, would you? You’re my opponent?” The pokémon seemed surprised to say the least. Not least because it knew fully well it would have something of a disadvantage competing against a fully evolved creature such as an Espeon!
“Yeah, that’s me!” Kirei beamed. “Kirei, the world’s most petite, pretty and generally wonderful Espeon!”
“Modest, too, I see.” Already that unique hyperactive brand of charm was working on the Squirtle. The stunned expression was slowly giving way to a bemused smile. “Any other skills I should know about before we begin?”
“Let me see...” Kirei gave the matter due consideration before coming up with the most ridiculous list she could manage. “I’m a great alarm clock, just ask Ade, he’ll tell you. I can out drink a speeding Wartortle, and outtalk just about anyone. Really I can do anything apart from wash the dishes. Whether I can do it well is another matter.” Suddenly her expression grew serious. Well, as serious as Kirei’s expression was ever likely to get these days. Sometimes it seemed as if her chronological and mental ages were heading in totally opposite directions. “I’m going to give this one my all, you know. Don’t think I’m going to be a pushover.”
“Don’t worry, I don’t.” The Squirtle nodded gravely. It was proficient enough in its skills to be able to tell when its opponent was likely to be a challenge. And Kirei, for all her daftness, seemed like she could pose one very tricky challenge indeed.
“Good.” And that was as far as the conversation was allowed to go, for already the officials were making it quite clear that they would like the course starting some time in the next few minutes. The two pokémon didn’t have much choice but to take up their positions at the starting line. Kirei gritted her teeth in concentration. Snow almost unnaturally white was all that she could see in all directions, broken only by the blaze of colour that made up the spectator stands located behind her swishing tails. But that really didn’t matter. All that mattered to Kirei was in setting off as quickly as possible. For whilst life was almost certainly a game to the Espeon, sometimes it paid to take your games seriously. All she really wanted, therefore, was to hear that starting whistle. And then she would show them all just what this former pet was capable of.

GO!!! L10 Espeon v L10 Squirtle!

Kirei had been concentrating so hard that she almost missed the thing she had been concentrating upon. Almost. But it didn’t take a genius to hear the piercing whistle that marked the beginning of the course, and within seconds Kirei was off, her paws pounding at the snow beneath her, her heart racing, determined to put as much ground between herself and the Squirtle as possible before the first stretch of water. Because she knew that whilst she had the advantage on dry land - her sleek form was far better adapted to running than the short legs of a Squirtle - her opponent would almost certainly gain ground in the water. She didn’t even realise how she knew this. She just did. It was just one of the many mysteries surrounding the gemstone embedded in her skull. If she needed an answer, or a reason, it would often just pluck one out of the air for her, the most bizarre thing being that its logic was always impeccable. So right now she understood the value of making as much ground as possible, even though the reasoning behind this tactic would almost certainly be forgotten before the race had even finished.
“Damn!” The first stretch of land had reached a premature end, and Kirei was now faced with a short stretch of water. This wasn’t good. She hadn’t been able to get far enough in the lead! Well, there wasn’t really much she could do about that now. She would just have to take a dive and hope the advantage the Squirtle held in the water didn’t hamper her efforts too much. “Oh my...” The first thing the Espeon realised upon hitting the water was that any form of swimming in a Winter Olympics event would be of the very cold, very difficult, and exceptionally uncomfortable variety, and no amount of squealing upon hitting the ice-cold liquid was liable to change that. She would just have to struggle along as best she could, even though the water was threatening to chill her to her very bones, even through the silky purple fur that covered her entire body. But it was hard. Even the comparatively simple act of getting started was difficult, such was the shock to the system that the sudden plunge had provided. Yet Kirei knew that she had little choice but to try and struggle onwards. Already she could just about see the Squirtle out of the corner of her eye. If she slowed down the pace any then it would surely take the lead. If it wasn’t too late to prevent that already.
“You don’t do well in water, do you?” The Squirtle zipped past with infuriating ease, making a total mockery of Kirei’s fumbling attempts at swimming. It wasn’t that she was a bad swimmer, far from it. Having a Vaporeon for an elder sister had done wonders for her on that score. But no amount of idyllic races in warm waters could help her here, where every breath was beginning to become a struggle, where cold and tiredness combined to reduce her limbs to numbness. Right now the Espeon was regretting even signing up for this course. To her mind it was more trouble than it was worth.
“I do do well, I will do well, I can’t not do well...” Kirei hissed through gritted teeth, trying to push herself just that little bit farther. And just as she thought that her body was about to give up, her paw finally touched solid ground. The end of the water. Well, at least that particular stretch of water. Kirei didn’t want to think about the possibility of there being any more of that, though! “Oh thank God!” Soaked and spluttering, Kirei pulled herself out of the icy waters, only to face just as chilling a wind. It was enough to destroy the spirits of even the most cheerful of pokémon, and the temptation to just give up now was immense. How in the world was she supposed to catch up now? The water had taken its toll, and there was no way she was in any condition to reach her earlier speeds. She would be lucky if she came within miles of the Squirtle again without some kindness from fate, which rarely deigned to allow such graces. “Dammit, Kirei, why didn’t you just try and JUMP the water, it would have been just as effective!” Reluctantly the Espeon picked up her pace again, this time a slower, more erratic version of her earlier bolting. And then she halted. Maybe there was a way to make up for lost time after all. Already she could make out two of the targets she was supposed to knock down on her route. One was just ahead, but the other was some distance away. If she could just take these down from a distance, whilst running, maybe she could make up some ground whilst her opponent was lining up his shots. It was risky, but there were very few options left. So as she made her way towards the first target, Kirei began to gather her powers, to focus them into a charge of energy that made the gem on her forehead begin to sparkle with barely-contained electrical power. And just as she reached the target she unleashed that energy in the form of a powerful Zap Cannon that struck full on and splintered the wooden circle into tiny pieces. Not that Kirei noticed. She was already busy tearing towards the next target, the pokémon equivalent of adrenaline finally kicking in and her energy seeming to increase appropriately. The second target was swiftly dealt with in the exact same manner, only this time she managed to dispatch it with slightly more speed. And then a third appeared. And was destroyed in the same manner. If Kirei had known more about pokémon attacks she would have been puzzled by what was going on here. Certainly all the spectators were left speechless. Zap Cannon was known for being an unwieldy manoeuver, yet here she was racing around effortlessly hitting targets first time without so much as pausing to line up her shots! In actual fact, yet again she had her unusual powers to thank for this. Psychic powers can be very subtle at times. Even one’s luck can be determined by the individual’s psychic abilities. And Kirei was merely demonstrating just how easily the odds can be defied with the right kind of talents. Of course she didn’t know that. She was just glad that it worked! Even now she could just about make out the figure of the Squirtle in the distance. And - joy of joys - there was the beginning of the ice section of the course. As a fifth and final target was smashed, Kirei began to think that she actually stood a chance again. “Hey!”
“What the...?” Kirei’s sudden call distracted the Squirtle. It had almost given up on seeing the Espeon again, and to see her bolting towards it as if she had never been in difficulty, with only sodden fur to show for her earlier troubles, was a distraction it could have done without. It had been hoping to get across the ice without having to battle, but now the chances of that happening seemed more and more remote by the minute. Still, it pressed on regardless. Maybe it could reach the finish line before Kirei could reach it, before she could try using any attacks, before... “Aah!” The Squirtle screamed in fright as a large sphere of crackling energy shot past just inches to its left. Apparently its opponent was onto the ice herself, and she wasn’t playing around. A direct hit by an attack of that calibre would have taken it out of the match completely.
“Oh, I’ve finally got your attention now, have I?” Kirei was starting to enjoy herself despite the circumstances, and despite the fact that the chilling conditions were beginning to make her feel a trifle unwell. She had found that she could make just as much progress upon ice by sitting down and propelling herself with her front paws as she could in a straightforward run. Which required considerably less effort and gave her hind paws a much needed break. “I told you I was going to give this my all!” By now the two pokémon were practically level again. This one was going to be close!
“So you did! Well I’m not giving up just yet!” Well, if Kirei could use attacks, so could the Squirtle! Still sliding over the ice, it took in a deep breath, preparing to use its Water Gun attack. Kirei, however, had other ideas, spinning round as she moved and hitting the Squirtle several times with her tails, an improvised and highly effective multiple hit version of Tail Whip that served admirably in its purpose to knock the water pokémon out of its attack. Disorientated as her opponent now was, the chances were that Kirei could have seized the opportunity to take the lead there and then, but by this point she was in no mood to take any more chances. In the Espeon’s mind she had already used up all the luck she was ever going to get today. She didn’t dare leave the Squirtle with a chance to reclaim victory at the last minute. Which was why she finished off this already impressive trick with one of those logic-defying moves that only a creature whose powers worked in the way hers did could even stand a chance of pulling off. For a second Kirei just let herself carry on spinning. And then, out of the blue, she pounced, hitting the Squirtle hard in the chest with a Tackle that knocked it onto its back - and hence made it next to impossible for the pokémon to upright itself - whilst simultaneously using its body as a springboard to launch herself at the finish line with quite remarkable speed. It wasn’t quite enough to provide her with the spectacular finish she had been hoping for, of course. Even Kirei’s seemingly impossible luck had its limits, and those limits had been sorely tested by her earlier actions. So instead of flying nimbly across the finish line the Espeon instead crashed back to earth just feet away, and was left to make that final distance by sliding across the ice nose first, simply too exhausted now to really care about making a dignified return. Victory was hers, apparently. But to be honest the Espeon was too drained to even notice. It was as much as she could do to acknowledge her teammates as they ran over to congratulate her.
“Kirei, you’re soaked!” I had to pick the Espeon up in order to get her to move, she had become so weakened in the course of her match. She felt absolutely frozen to the touch, and would almost certainly need some treatment to prevent any serious illnesses setting in as a result of her ridiculously low temperature. To see her in this state made me feel guilty for allowing her to compete. She had really overdone it this time!
“You have to realise these things are relative, Ade.” Milliardo, as was his nature, tried to dismiss the situation, but even he seemed slightly concerned. “Compared to, say, a Magikarp that’s still in the water, she’s positively dry. Although call it a hunch, but I don’t think Espeons are supposed to be quite this wet, not in the middle of winter when it’s freezing cold at the best of times.” The Umbreon did have a point!
“Yeah, you’re right there. Come on, Kirei, let’s get you someplace warm. You look like you need a good rest, and I don’t think Lucky or your sister would ever forgive me if I kept you out here longer than I had to.”
“Thanks, Ade.” Kirei responded finally to the warmth of my body against hers. The contact made her feel a little better in some ways. “I wouldn’t forgive you if you kept me out here either. I’ve just decided. I really, really hate winter. It’s too cold for the likes of me.” And with this, the Espeon all but fell asleep leaning into my shoulder. She was right, of course. We simply didn’t need to be here any longer. Our point had been proven. We had accomplished what we had set out to do. And now it was time to return. For whilst there was a lot to be said about these kind of events, they really couldn’t beat a warm fire, good conversation and the comforts of home, could they?

Kirei wins!
Kirei grew to L11!

Lady Vulpix
10th March 2003, 09:28 AM
Thanks, Ade! Always so thoughtful. Now I have some good material to read on my way to university! :D

I'[ve barely even started my Hockey match. I need to get my stories done fast so I can dedicate myself to the Dragon Games. Otherwise, Tsunami would never forgive me!

Lady Vulpix
11th March 2003, 11:54 AM
Yet another excellent story, Ade! I've only read up to the hockey match so far and I'll give you 17 stamps for that! ¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢
I'll try to read the course as soon as possible, and write my own story.
By the way, trust Hero and Katnip to finish off with a Quick Attack, right? :D

Lady Vulpix
16th March 2003, 07:22 AM
<Tsunami's POV>

Somewhere after lunch, while we were waiting for the race track to be taken away and replaced by the hockey rink, and still hearing our Ninetales friend boast about being the fastest pokemon alive or something like that, Gabi's gear-phone rang. I tried to make out the conversation, and I didn't do so badly. From her "hello? Oh, it's you I was just... Oh, I see. It's ok, I understand. Yes, I know. Well, I... Yes, yes, it's ok. Then I'll see you when your things have calmed down. Good luck with everything! Thanks, on you too. So do I *big smile here*. I hope so too. Take care. I'll be thinking of you. Do your best, things will come out right. Ok, see you. You too. You know, the hockey game is about to start now, so I'd better go now. Yes, it would be great... maybe some other time. Bye, take care," I made out that Ryan was too busy to come. Am I a genius or what? ;)
We got to watch some exciting matches before my friends' turn came. One was particularly vicious, and ended with the whole rink melted down and a member of the winning team being disqualified: an Unown with an extremely hot temper. I'd never witnessed anything like that before. After that, they called for all pokemon who could use freezing moves to help rebuild the rink quickly so that the games could continue. I couldn't help with that, as my only ice move (Aurora Beam) wasn't cold enough to freeze the water (as some pokemon had embarrassingly proved during the last swimming race at the Eevee House), but Lagi and Water Angel were very helpful. Many pokemon cooperated to re-freeze the site; apparently everyone wanted to resume the game as fast as possible.
When the ice was thick enough, the same pokemon who had built the rink tested its resistance. Once they were sure it wouldn't break, they left and we waited for the next teams to be called in. To my surprise, one of them turned out to be ours.
"Alright!," Caledor exclaimed. "Ready or not, here we go! Whoever our opponents are, they'd better be prepared. The Fantasy Team is on the way!"
"Fantasy team?," questioned Amber.
"Err... Dream Team was taken," Caledor grinned.
"I'd never thought of giving us a name before, but I think that's a nice one," Sylvan commented.
"Why not?," Amber smiled, almost letting a giggle come out.
"Thanks for your support, girls," Caledor said. "Then, I repeat, here we go!"
"Will the ice be firm enough to hold my weight?," wondered Sylvan.
"It has just been tested by all those pokemon, even Lagi," Amber reassured. "Everything will be fine."
"As long as no one decides to melt the rink again," I pointed out.
"I don't think anyone would do that," Amber told me. "After what happened, the whole team could be disqualified if anyone tried that again."
"Your opponents are already on the rink, Fantasy Team," Gabi warned my friends. "Get down before you get disqualified for being late."

We all directed a look at the Blastoise, Sneasel and Feraligatr who were standing on the rink.
"They look intimidating," Sylvan admitted, walking the first step.
"So do we," Amber reminded her.
"I don't, but I like it that way," Caledor said. "I like having the surprise element."
"And the confidence to match," Sylvan remarked.
"Hey, if you have no confidence, you've lost the match before it starts!," Caledor pointed out.
The kid was right. Surprisingly, even he could be mature when the situation required it. Maybe I was giving him too little credit. Being cheerful and optimistic 99.9% of the time didn't necessarily make him immature. It was a wrong assumption driven by the unfortunate fact that most creatures lose their ability to laugh and enjoy themselves as they get older. Now that I thought of it, maybe Caledor's attitude was the wisest. Though not taken to the limit, as he usually did; you have to be serious once in a while!

The team went down and met their opponents on the rink. Against our team's tradition, no words were exchanged. Just some looks between both teams. Sylvan took her position at the goal, and so did the Blastoise on the opposite side. The puck was placed in the center of the rink and the remaining players stood on each side of it. Each team was assigned a color: green for my friends and blue for their opponents. Then, a voice on the loudspeaker announced the beginning of the match.

Lv. 43 Espeon & Lv. 44 Charizard & Lv. 44 Venusaur vs. Lv. 50 Feraligatr & Lv.50 Sneasel & Lv.50 Blastoise

The Sneasel was the first one to get the puck, and pushed it so fast that Sylvan barely managed to react in time and stretch out her vines in order to stop it from entering the goal.
"That's cheating!," The Sneasel shouted.
"No, it's not," Amber told him. "There are no rules against that. But I heard there are rules against having 2 pokemon of the same type in a team."
"They had to make an exception with us because all the pokemon in our team were water or ice type," the Sneasel explained, while using the distraction to take control of the puck again. Sylvan was caught off-guard this time, and the Sneasel scored.


"Oh, no, not again!," Sylvan shouted. "You might want to consider getting a different goalkeeper next time."
"We won with you last time," Amber reminded her. "You're good, hold up your head."
"Should I do something about that Sneasel?," Caledor asked Amber.
"Not yet," the Charizard said. "Attacks are allowed, but let's not be the first ones to use them."
"We won't need any attacks to defeat you," the Sneasel assured, having heard Amber's words. "It's your turn, will you hit the puck or what?"
"Patience is a virtue, my friend," Amber said, hitting the puck hard.
The disc went past the Sneasel, but the Feraligatr caught it and gained control. Neither Amber not Caledor could stop him. He evaded them with ease. Sylvan got her vines ready, but the blue reptile hit the puck with an effect, making it take off and fly above the Venusaur's vines. She tried to adjust and managed to touch the disc, but couldn't stop it from entering the goal. The blue team had scored again.


"We need to make some adjustments," Amber reckoned. "We need a better strategy."
"We need Ventura," Sylvan sighed.
"I thought you were already independent," Caledor said.
"No one is ever completely independent," Sylvan replied.
Amber hit the puck again, this time taking care not to send it too far from herself. Caledor ran by her side. The Sneasel tried to intercept them, but they managed to make 2 passes at the right time and avoid him. The Feraligatr waited in the center of the blue field. Seeing the compact barrier Amber and Caledor had built, he decided to break it with a Water Gun. The water didn't hurt my friends, but it succeeded in taking the puck away from them. The Sneasel caught it, but before he could score again he was pushed back by Sylvan's own water attack: Hidden Power.
"Hearts have been broken," Sylvan announced making an analogy of the card game.
"There's no holding back now," Caledor decided. "Aside from the bounds of reason; this is still a game, after all."
The Sneasel disappeared from sight. My friends looked around, searching for any shadows that might be hiding him.
"Watch the puck!!," Pidgeot shouted from the stalls.
Then it all happened at the same time. Caledor turned towards the puck and released a Thunder Wave, right when the Sneasel reappeared and tried to hit it. That gave Amber the chance to take control of the puck once more. I heard the Sneasel mutter something, but I couldn't make it out. I take it that it wasn't nice, since Caledor responded with a "hey, we're playing the same game!"
"How did you do that?!," shouted the Feraligatr.
"I could show you, but you wouldn't like it," Caledor replied, gracefully dodging the subject.
This may sound weird, or at least it looked weird to me, being more than used to the kid's abilities, but Caledor's attack caused a distraction among the other team which allowed Amber to finally score her first goal.


In mere seconds, the situation had turned in favour of the green team (or should I say Fantasy Team?), and now it was their opponents who had to regroup and adjust. Apparently the Sneasel was their main hitter and now that he was paralyzed someone would have to take his place. Most precisely the Feraligatr; not like there were many choices.
Everyone returned to the center of the rink and the Feraligatr hit the puck towards Sylvan's goal with all his strength. But this time the Venusaur was prepared and she sent it bouncing to the other side with her vine. No one could stop it, except for the Blastiose, who sent it off with another Water Gun. This was amazing! The puck crossed the rink from side to side twice in a matter of seconds. Sylvan managed to stop it again, and decided to pause for a moment before launching it to the other side once more.
"What's taking you so long?!," the Feraligatr shouted.
"Be patient," Sylvan replied. "I'm trying to find the best way to..."
Without finishing the phrase, or as a way to finish it, she hit the puck back into the rink.
"Amber!," she called out right before the Feraligatr could get the puck.
The Charizard reacted fast and got her stick between the water pokemon and the disc, and both pokemon struggled for a few seconds, neither gaining control of the puck.
By then the Sneasel was having problems trying to reach his teammate and his fiery opponent. Caledor stood behind Amber in case the Feraligatr managed to take the puck away from her. The goalkeepers observed every move carefully.
The struggle was brought to an end when Amber was sent rolling across the rink by a powerful aquatic blast. A wave, nonetheless! Now I was furious. That had been totally uncalled for. Not only had the Feraligatr brought disgrace to the name of the Surf attack by using it in such a dirty way, but also he'd just hurt a good friend of mine. Even when she did get back up, I could tell she had taken a bad blow by the look on her face and the steam coming from the tip of her tail. I couldn't take it anymore. I ran down the stalls and jumped into the rink.
I don't remember the exact words I shouted at the Feraligatr, but one thing I do remember clearly: they weren't pretty.
"Who are you and what the hell are you doing here?!," the Feraligatr yelled at me. "You're interfering with our game!"
"Oh, you don't watch TV. Ok, I'm not offended by that. Actually, who I am doesn't matter right now, but what you have just done goes against the spirit of healthy competition. She's just playing, she's not your enemy! What were you thinking, attacking her like that? You could have... I don't even want to think of what you could have done!"
"Attacks are allowed."
"Yes, but not such vicious attacks! What's the difference between you and the pokemon who got disqualified for melting the rink?"
"The difference is that the Unown was taken care of by the judges, not some crazy member of the audience!"
"Enough is enough!," someone shouted behind me.
Before I could recognize the voice, I knew who it was by the electric discharge I received. It was aimed to the Feraligatr, but the ice conducted some of it towards me too. I'd lost count of the times my little friend had zapped me. I turned around and scolded him.
"How come I always end up being on the receiving end of your attacks?!"
"Not always, but... I'm sorry. I was just trying to help," he apologized.
Needless to say, the game was interrupted. Two men came in, I was taken out of the rink and the Feraligatr was warned. I just hoped his incident wouldn't affect my opportunities at the Dragon Games, whenever they were finally resumed.
Caledor stared at me with a concerned look as I returned to Gabi's side. Believe me, few things can be scarier than Caledor being concerned. From the stalls, I shouted "I'll be fine, kid!," and then I finally got to see his old smile. I could relax now.

<Caledor's POV>

I'd never expected Tsunami to do something like that. He must have been really mad! I had to make sure no one got hurt again. But how? The blue team regrouped to discuss a new strategy, and so did we.
"We're all fully evolved now, this should be easier than the previous game, not harder," Amber sighed.
"If they touch you again, I'll make them pay," threatened Sylvan.
It was strange, everyone was acting in an unusual way. Tsunami crashing a game, Sylvan making a threat... and me getting worried, that was the scariest thing!
"Can your psychic powers help us?," Amber asked me.
I shrugged.
"I can use them to attack or to defend us, but that's all I can promise. For an Espeon, my ESP leaves a lot to be desired. Sometimes I wonder if I really am an Espeon."
"Well, you certainly look like one, and you evolved from Eevee using a Day Stone," Sylvan pointed out. "I don't know if there are any other requirements to be an Espeon, but what else could you be?"
"I don't know. But hey!, why are we talking about this? We have a game to play. Games are supposed to be fun! So let's find away to enjoy the game or leave it and play something else, because there's no way I'll be letting a game bring me down!"
"Ok, I guess we can still try and have fun if our opponents calm down," Amber said.
"I'll see to it," I assured. "And I have another idea. My psychic powers may not be too useful now, but my experience playing games may come in handy."
"Ok, we trust you," Sylvan told me.
Amber nodded in agreement. I turned around to face the blue team.
"New rule!," I shouted. "From now on offensive attacks can be used only on the puck!"
"Who are you to change the rules?," the Blastoise confronted me.
"I just thought it would make the game less dangerous and more fun. Games are supposed to be fun, aren't they?"
"You were the one who attacked me!," the Sneasel cried.
"And your friend there attacked my friend. We're even now. So why don't we play a clean game now?"
"It doesn't sound so bad," the Blastoise accepted.
"We'll see," the Feraligatr said.
"If you attack anyone again, I will attack you," I warned him. "We'll make it fair. If you play clean, I'll play clean too. You'll see it gets much more interesting that way."
"As I said, we'll see."
Saying this, the Feraligatr hit the puck without a warning. Amber managed to stop it and sent it over to me. I caught it and pushed it in zigzag waiting for Amber to catch up. That almost cost me the puck, as the Feraligatr and the Sneasel surrounded me and closed in on me. I had to use a Water Gun to make the puck slide away from them. Amber took off not to touch the water and hit the puck from the air. It was a dangerous maneuver, but the Blastoise was distracted looking at me glow blue and shoot water from my mouth. And that distraction allowed Amber to score.


"What are you?!," the Blastoise asked. Not that question again!
"I'm Caledor," I told him. "I'm one of a kind."
The Blastoise laughed. I realized I had lost the surprise factor and presented myself as the wild card of my team, but at least that should stop them from getting at Amber. We returned to the center and prepared for another shot, and it came... with an Icy Wind courtesy of the Sneasel. I had to jump to the side to avoid the chilling wind, knowing the effects it could have on anyone it touched, but that meant letting the puck slide by me. Now it was too late to stop it.
Amber tried to fly back and get it, but the Feraligatr used a Water Gun to push it even further away. It was up to Sylvan to stop it. She used her Hidden Power, but the Feraligatr's water current was stronger than hers. There wasn't time to get her vines to the puck, it was going to pass right under her body. I thought there was nothing she could do to stop it, but I was wrong.
"Oww!! It's cold!," was the first thing I heard.
When all of the water had either evaporated or frozen, I saw Sylvan stand up and get the puck from below her with one of her front legs. She was still making gestures of pain.
"What did you do?!," I asked her.
"I stopped the puck..." she said. "With my stomach, but I almost froze in the process! Oww!"
"You have guts!," The Blastoise praised her.
"At least I did have them. They may be frozen now," she cried.
Amber requested a time-out and carefully helped Sylvan warm up.
"This game is taking forever!," complained the Feraligatr. "We need to go home someday, and there's still another event after this one."
"You can go home whenever you want," I told him. "No one's stopping you."
"I'm not quitting the game!"
"Then stay until it ends. It's your decision."
"You're an irritating little brat! You should learn to shut your mouth."
"If you think I talk too much, you definitely don't know my friends!"
"Hey!," two voices shouted in unison from the stalls. They were Hero and Tsunami. I grinned. I knew they'd know I was talking about them.
"Besides," I continued. "I'm much smaller in size than you, but I don't think I could be called little."
Sylvan burst into laughter.
"What's up?," I asked her. "Is Amber tickling you?"
"No, it's just that... you didn't mind being called a brat, you complained about all the rest."
"Bah," I laughed.
"Ok, I'm ready!," Sylvan announced.
We all gathered in the center of the rink to receive the puck, which she hit with her left vine, sending it diagonally to the front and to the right. Amber, who was on that side, caught it, but it didn't take long before the Feraligatr took it away. He skidded to my side and I shot a Water Gun at the disc, but this time he was prepared and blocked the water with his stick. Amber came by and tried to take the puck again and the pair got stuck once more.
"I have to do something to unlock them," I thought. But it was the Sneasel who did something. He released a Blizzard that caused both Amber and the Feraligatr to move away from the puck, and sent the puck sliding to the side of the rink. I moved faster than anyone else and was able to get hold of it. I pushed the puck forward, but the Feraligatr soon came to my encounter. I had to hit the disc strongly and send it to the side to stop him from taking it. Luckily, Amber was ready to pick it. But unluckily, the Sneasel was ready to pick her.
The dark pokemon held Amber's tail tight, keeping his claws at a prudential distance from her flame. He'd ended up to be stronger than he looked. His grip was so firm that Amber couldn't free herself, nor even pull forward. She was forced to hit the puck from where she was, and the Blastoise caught it easily.
"Let go of me!," Amber shouted.
"Years of training have given their fruits," the Sneasel ignored her. "Now we're even."
"I can burn you," Amber warned him. "I could hurt you a lot."
"But you won't. This is just a game and you don't strike me as the kind of Charizard who plays dirty."
"Isn't what you're doing dirty play?," she questioned him.
"I'm not hurting you," he replied. "I'm just holding you in one place."
By then, the Blastoise had already released the puck into the game, and the Feraligatr had caught it. I had to rush in order to stop him from reaching the goal again. I knew that Sylvan wasn't going to let her belly touch the ice once more. The Feraligetr was too far ahead to reach him, so I shot a Thunderbolt at the puck to send it off-course. It worked. Now I only had to get to were it was, but the Feraligatr was closer than me. I'd have to try something new... isn't it great when an idea comes to your mind right when you need it?
I came up with a new use for Reflect. Don't ask how. I formed an invisible barrier around me, making it as wide and as strong as possible; two things that weren't wholly compatible, but I managed to get a decent result. I then ran as fast as I could towards the puck. The Feraligatr must have been wondering what the purple light around me was, but in any case he found out when I came close to him and his movement was suddenly slowed down. I couldn't stop him completely, but at least my Reflect made him slow enough inside its action radius to let me get to the puck before he did.
In the meantime, Amber kept shaking her tail from side to side and finally managed to get rid of the Sneasel's grasp. His paralysis didn't help him get her back, so she was finally free. I passed the puck to her and she pushed it towards the goal. I ran by her side, about 3 meters away from her. The Feraligatr couldn't reach us. The Blastoise prepared himself to make a catch, but I had another idea. I was inspired at that moment!
"Amber, pass it to me!," I told her.
She made a pass and the Blastoise turned, preparing to receive the puck from my side. But before the disc reached me, when it was right in front of the goal, I sent a Water Gun at it, getting it in.


"Yay, we're finally ahead!," I cheered, proud of the results of the trick I was unlikely to be able to repeat.
Amber patted my back and congratulated me. She almost seemed like Gabi!
"Two more goals and we'll get this over with," she said.
"What? Aren't you having fun?," I asked her.
"Hmm... Not too much. But don't worry, I'll keep doing my best."
I felt sorry for Amber. I had only just realized how hard the whole game had been for her so far. This wasn't like the game which had resulted in her final evolution. A half of her wasn't even here now, it was struggling against emotions I'd never known; and the other half had been receiving the attacks of the Feraligatr and the Sneasel.
"Don't worry, I've got you covered," I told her.
I wasn't really sure of what I meant by that, but I hoped it would make her feel more confident.
We went back to the center of the rink. I tried to get by Amber's side and look for ideas with her, but our opponents didn't give us the time. Now it was the Sneasel who hit the puck, not only with his stick, but also with an Icy Wind. Amber and I had to move aside once more, but we wouldn't let him get away with it this time. I sent a Thunderbolt at the puck, pushing it away from the wind. It worked, but not as well as I hoped. The Feraligatr had anticipated my move and was already on the other side of the rink getting the puck. He pushed it towards Sylvan's goal and Amber went right behind him. She intercepted him before he could score, but he just pushed her aside with one of his strong arms. This caused Sylvan to direct her attention at Amber for a moment, and the Feraligatr used that chance to score.


"That wasn't fair!," Sylvan complained, but the Feraligatr ignored her.
"Ok, let's make it even," I decided. "Amber, we must move fast this time. Are you ready?"
Amber nodded. That was my cue to go back to the center and hit the puck with all my strength before the others could react. They tried to get it, of course, but I didn't let them. I sent a Thunderbolt following the course of the puck, about half a meter above the disc. No one could have stood in front of it without getting zapped. As for the sides, Amber was guarding them fiercely. The Feraligatr tried to get the puck from the opposite side to where Amber was, but she gave the puck an extra impulse before he could reach it. I walked slowly behind the puck, keeping the Thunderbolt at full strength above it. When the disc reached the goal, there was nothing the Blastoise could do to send it away without getting shocked, so this time it was easy to pass by him and score.


"That was great!," Sylvan cheered from her goal. "Do you think you can do that again?"
"I don't know, powering up a Thunderbolt for such a long time is tiring, but I can try."
"Don't drain yourself," Amber advised me. "You must save some of your energy for the Course."
I agreed, but I didn't know how to do that and score again at the same time. I thought it would be great to end the game 5-3 just like before. It could be... our lucky score or something. Well, it would be lucky because it would mean that we won.
I didn't get the time to keep thinking of that because the Sneasel sent an Icy Wind again. We had to do something to stop the blue team from reaching our goal for the third time with that strategy! But what?
"Fire!," Amber shouted out, as if replying to my thoughts.
She accompanied her words with a Flamethrower aimed straight at the puck. I didn't know what she was trying to do, but I contributed with a Flamethrower of my own. The Feraligatr added in some water trying to put out the fire and the result was a huge whirlpool of steam that forced everyone to get away from the puck. When the clouds finally cleared out, the puck stood alone, waiting for someone to get it. Of course, then came a race to the puck in which all of us tried to take possession of it first. And the winner was... me!
Seeing that I had the puck, Amber walked a few steps back to receive a pass. I tried to grant it, but both the Seasel and the Feraligatr were blocking me. It wouldn't be easy, especially now that they'd seen all the types of attacks I could use. I finally decided to do the one thing I hadn't tried yet: bluff.
I gave my opponents a serious look and began to glow purple. Then I changed the color to red. Then blue. Then gold. I could tell they were getting confused. Who wouldn't? Anyone who didn't know me could have thought I was going to release some multi-type super attack or something. I made the glow more intense (my golden glow was excellent for that) and when they stepped back and braced themselves for whatever was coming... I made the pass for Amber.
I would have burst into laughter at how well the trick had worked if it hadn't been for the rage on the Feraligatr's face. That guy had no sports spirit at all. I felt a tickle in my forehead as he approached me and a huge Blizzard came my way - or that was what I thought. I blinked and saw there was no Blizzard; only a furious Feraligatr taking a very deep breath. I decided to think about what had happened later and jumped as far to the side as possible before the attack could be released. That way I saved myself from a real Blizzard. I could tell it was authentic by the way the air got colder all around. Now as I ran away from the raging Feraligatr I had the chance to go through the facts and understand what had just happened. My conclusion was that maybe I was an Espeon after all.
Amber was getting to the goal, and the paralyzed Sneasel couldn't stop her. I ran right behind her. It looked like we were about to score, but the Blastoise didn't seem to agree with that. He was getting ready for something. I just wished my psychic powers would help me again, but it wasn't that easy. They weren't the kind of powers that would come whenever I called for them. Anyway, I was grateful for them; they'd just saved me from a very cold experience and from losing my chance at the Course.
"Caledor, watch out!"
Amber's cry brought me back to the present... just in time to avoid a Bubble Beam from the Blastiose!
The bubbles passed right by me. It was strange, you'd think at least one of them would hit me, but they didn't. They just formed a speeding wall of watery film between me and Amber. Then I realized the attack hadn't been aimed at me. It had all been a tactic to neutralize me by keeping me away from the puck. And it had worked. After that, the Blastoise shot another Bubble Beam, this time at the puck. Amber was forced to take off to avoid the bubbles, leaving the puck free to be picked by the Feraligatr, who was just about to catch up with her... about to take away our precious chance to score the last goal. I couldn't let that happen, could I?
I decided to fight fire with fire, or in this case water with water. I aimed my own Bubble Beam between Amber and the Feraligatr to slow the latter down, and in the meantime ran to Amber's side, getting in my opponent's way. The Feraligatr passed through the bubbles, but not fast enough to stop me. Now I was right in the middle of the two Water pokemon. I knew one of them would have to attack to break the barrier my body and Amber's were forming. And while the Feraligatr was the most likely to play dirty, it was the Blastoise who had a clean shot at the puck. An attack by the Feraligatr could have sent the puck straight into the Blastoise's goal and of course he wouldn't want that. (See? I can make deductions. :P) So the Blastoise was going to attack. And for once I knew just how to avoid him.
When I began to glow blue, the Blastoise hurried to release a Bubble Beam. He was no fool, so I bet he knew I was going to use a Water attack, but he had no way to know which one. He aimed the shot right at the puck, but by the time it reached the spot where it had been, the disc was already soaring above its beam, resting on my stick held firmly by an Espeon who was floating on top of a beautiful wave - that would be me. The Bubble Beam impacted on the wave, making in break but that only threw me forward into the goal. I fell on the Blastoise's head and the puck fell right behind me. Ok, it wasn't the most elegant goal, but it won us the match!
...And then the boards showed the score I loved so much!


The Green Team won!

I grew to level 44 while Sylvan and Amber reached level 45.

"Go, Fantasy Team!," I cheered, still stuck on the Blastoise's head.
The big turtle helped me down and I helped him with a typical 'heh' smile. He then offered me his hand and I shook it with my paw, for which I had to stand on my hind legs - the Blastoise was much taller than me. Then Amber and Sylvan came by and shook his hand too.
"Good game," the Sneasel said. "Now get me to a Pokemon Center. I could really use the help."
The only one who didn't show any signs of courtesy was the Feraligatr. It figured, he probably hadn't enjoyed the game in the least, being as busy as he had been trying to win at all costs. That served me as a reminder to keep having fun as my main priority whenever I had the chance to play.
"I could use some help too," Amber said. "I've been giving my best, but I really don't feel so well. That Feraligatr hit me hard."
"Please forgive our teammate. He has no manners," the Blastoise tried to excuse him. "He's great at battling, but he sometimes tends to forget that not everything in life is a battle."
The Feraligatr growled, looking at the Blastoise through the corner of his eye. His only spoken reply was "let's go now."
We all left the rink and met the rest of our team. Tsunami congratulated us, but not without making a joke about me being ungrateful and ending the game by copying him after he had risked his reputation by crashing the game for us. I then reminded him that Surf was an official Pokemon League attack, and not the Vaporeon's copyright. And so on, we had another of our friendly comeback fights. Gabi said some words to Amber which I was too busy to listen to, but their conversation ended up with a big hug. We missed the following match, as we headed off to the healing stand (some kind of Pokemon Center built specifically for this event and which would probably be gone the following day) to heal Amber. But we did get to see the last match, and it was quite good.
Finally, after all the hockey games were over, we went back into the lodge to have a snack -though Gabi wouldn't let me take in anything heavy, so I only got some orange juice and a cereal bar while my teammates filled their stomachs-, and then we waited for the final event to start. I was really looking forward to finding out what the Course was all about.

Lady Vulpix
16th March 2003, 07:25 AM
Oh, and Ade, sorry for the delay. I read the rest of your story days ago, but for some reason or another I could never post here when I tried to. Either TPM went down or I got a sudden and urgent phone call... These days were crazy!
Well, I want to tell you that what you wrote was great and for that I'm giving you 10 stamps for the Course! ¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢

17th March 2003, 11:56 AM
I'm going to repost my previous battle with Ieal. I'm going to include Ieal in the race, that will lead to the battle with the squirtle. It will be up in a few minutes.

17th March 2003, 12:45 PM
I’m going to battle in scenario version # 3. I’m going to use Ieal, my Stantler, that was hatched from Lady Vulpix’s Stantler, Iael, and Nala’s Ditto (Gabi, you will finally be able to witness Iael’s son’s battle techniques! Bout time, huh?)

(Jay’s POV)

I woke up before the alarm went off, something that seldom happens. It was 6:55. I didn’t bother going back to bed, for I’d be woken up in five minutes either by my buzzing alarm, or my howling Growlithe and Houndour. I pushed the covers up, and crept my room.

I sneaked into my closet, and scrambled through some clothing. I finally unearthed my favorite pair of jeans from the seemingly mountainous pile of clothing. I slipped the jeans on, which sagged down to my hips, which usually happened with all my pants, since I have no waist.

I then located my leather belt, and slipped it on, it’s ebony color faintly glimmering off the light of the sun. I then came across a t-shirt, which I usually wore under my sweater. It was snowing outside, so this was my casual dress for this type of weather. I found my hooded sweatshirt, and then my alarm went off.

I sauntered over to my nightstand, and turned the alarm off. I tiptoed out of my room, and downstairs, trying as hard as I could not to stir anyone from bed. I didn’t make a sound, walking through the dining room and into the kitchen. I then had to figure out what in the hell I was going to eat.

If you lived in a family like mine, then you were on your own for the majority of the time, especially for breakfast, lunch, AND dinner. My parents were workaholics, my dad researching the newer Pokemon that were said to be found in the newly discovered land of Hoenn; my mom working as a highly important executive for Silph Co. My mom usually was never home; only coming home on some of the weekends. She was relatively far from Blackthorn.

I got out a pan, and the box of Bisquick, and began to make pancakes. I mixed the concoction together, and put it in the pan to cook. It seemed I had disturbed my Pokemons’ peaceful slumber when Cinder crept into the kitchen. He glared at me with his dark eyes. It wasn’t necessarily a bad glare, but I had the feeling that he was still tired. He staggered under the little table near the wall of the kitchen, curled up, and began to sleep.

After a few moments of cooking, Ebony and Blazer stumbled in. They looked up at me, with starvation in their eyes. Since I had just begun making my final pancake, and it would be awhile since it would be finished, I got out the PokeIams, the Pokemon version of Iams dog food. I poured it into a couple of bowls and they began to eat. I waited until my final pancake was finished, and sat at the table.

I poured syrup and butter onto the flapjacks, and began to eat. I watched my two dog Pokemon, gorging themselves with food. They were obviously famished. I guess I didn’t give them enough to eat the night before, though I thought their meal might have been sufficient.

I finished breakfast, and gathered my Pokemon into their Pokeballs. I attached them to the sides of my pant legs, the usual Cooltrainer style. I walked outside, and almost felt overwhelmed from the icy air that swept into my lungs. I exhaled, and my breath was clearly visible. I locked the door behind me, before setting off onto my training expedition.

I strutted down the rocky road, my Pokeballs jingling at my every step. Many vehicles zoomed past, the usual Monday morning rush hour. There was no school today, since a massive heap of snow landed on Blackthorn overnight. The snow more or less came up to the midsection of my lower leg, which made it harder for me to travel expeditiously. I wondered if any of my friends would be out and about, training their Pokemon. None could be found within my path of vision, so I continued onward. There needed to be a perfect spot to train.

Ieal was going to be my steadfast and ambitious companion for today. He has been waiting forever to be trained. He doesn’t mind, for patience is one of his virtues. I marched downtown, where a commotion had begun.

There was a car crash, due to the ice on the roads. Blisseys and Nurse Joys were everywhere, helping the victims of this fatal wreck. Officer Jenny was also on the scene, getting information on how the accident was caused, and such stuff like that. I didn’t pay one bit of attention to her as she was bossing my around, telling me, a little child as she call me, to get out of the way and go home where I belong. I never took much of a liking to Officer Jenny, but I was cheered up by the kindness of Nurse Joy.

“Jay, how are you doing?” Nurse Joy asked me, holding a first aid kit that had been used on one of the victims a minute ago. Blood was covered on a damp rag.

“I’m fine, thank you, but how did this mess happen?” I asked, trying to gain information. I was a nosy person when it came to town matters. I always wanted to know what was going on.

“Well, it seems to me that one of the cars swerved on some ice while trying to dodge another car that almost rammed it. The driver lost control of the vehicle, and then an oncoming car collided with it,” she told me, scratching her arm.

“Are the drivers all right?” I asked, hoping for the best.

“Well, only one was critically hurt, but it isn’t extremely severe. It will take a few days for her to heal, but the other driver is completely fine, save a few scrapes and scratches. Oh! Sorry to leave like this, Jay, but it’s an emergency, they just pulled a second passenger from the vehicle. Boy, what a morning. See ya!” She hollered.

“Bye, Joy,” I called back, continuing on my way. I thoughts suddenly shifted from the accident to my duty as a trainer. After traveling through town, taking twists and turns within my route, I finally came to my destination… The River.

Today, there were racing going on at The River. I knew Ieal could do it, so I signed him up to race. He looked somewhat worried, but I had full confidence in him. A trainer came up to me, with a smirk on his face. He was a heavy-set man, with barely any neck, and massive hands. He chuckled as his gaze centered to my Stantler.

“Give up, kid. There’s no way that your Stantler could beat my Squirtle in a race. I’ll bet your Stantler isn’t even experienced in the water. That thing would probably drown after taking five steps!”

“Bring it on,” I said. “Ieal could kill your Squirtle not only in the race, but in a battle as well. Ieal’s battle techniques are first rate!” I had realized that I had just said something I shouldn’t have. His Squirtle looked strong; at least a level 10! Ieal had never battled before, either.

“All right, son,” the man said with a devilish smile forming on his face. “Let the race begin, and afterwards, a battle.” Ieal glared at me, with the expression “now look what you got us into” all over his face. The race was about to begin, so Ieal and I took our places at the beginning of The River.

“Come on, Ieal! You can win! Pulverize that Squirtle!” I told him.

(Ieal’s POV)

“Do I have a choice?” I said, under my breath. The whistle blew, and I rushed into the water. The water was freezing; it almost made my legs go numb. I kept working though, swimming through the water. I had to go 500 meters. I hit the first target with my antlers before moving on. It wasn’t that much. So far, I was tied with the Squirtle. The water went deeper now, up to the bottom of my chest, which made me go slower. Squirtle was gaining the lead, so I kicked harder and harder, finally catching up to him. Squirtle glanced in my direction, and gave me the evil eye, then struggled to lose me.

We were at the 400-meter mark now. I hit the second target, making sure I wasn't loosing speed. Squirtle’s entire body was completely in front of me. My hooves and joints were beginning to go numb. I started using my neck to make me go further every time I took a stride my jerking my head forward. This seemed to help a little. I was now catching up to Squirtle. He turned his head, and shot a Bubble Blast toward me, making me slow down some.

“Ok,” I thought. He wanted to play that way, huh. I kept struggling to go forward, and I finally positioned myself to where I wanted to be. I was right behind the Squirtle, and I had a plan. I ducked my head underwater, and swam forward. I felt all Squirtle’s legs under my antlers. I lifted my head up with force, and sent Squirtle flying backwards into the water behind me.

I had now gained the lead as I passed the 300-meter mark. I hit the third target before moving on. I didn’t turn back, for I new that that would only slow me down. Squirtle was gaining on me. I sensed that he was right behind me. Squirtle then bit my tail, making me jump as he swam by me. I gave Squirtle a Headbutt, sending him to the side of The River. Squirtle got back on track, and tried another Bubble attack. I was ready for it, and ducked my head underwater, while swimming forward. This caused some resistance against my stride, but I wasn’t that far behind. I emerged from the water, and I was still level with Squirtle.
I reached over with my neck, and bit Squirtle on the back of the shell. Picking him up, I then sent him behind me in the same manner that I had done with my antlers.

I had passed the 200 Meter mark, meaning the race was just about over. I hit the fourth target with some difficulty, making me lose some speed. Squirtle then came up behind me again, but I moved my tail. Squirtle didn’t attack me in the tail, as I thought we would, but, instead, he sent an Ice Beam to the back of my head. The ice struck my head, sending shivers all throughout my body. I slowed down some, enough for him to gain the lead. I struggled to get caught up with him, but I was losing him due to the Ice Beam.

The 100 Meter mark now came, and I was some 6 feet behind the Squirtle. I hit the last target, and now focused all my attention to the race. I continued to jerk my head and pump my legs in order to catch up. I was now right behind the Squirtle. I used my antler technique, but Squirtle was ready for it. 50 meters were all that was left. I had to think of something, and fast. I kept swimming until I was tied with Squirtle. 10 meters were left. Squirtle kept trying to make me stop, but I kept dodging his attacks. 8 meters, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3. I used Headbutt, sending Squirtle to the right, into the side of The River. The Finish Line was getting nearer, and Squirtle was just behind me. I picked up my hind legs, and flailed them at Squirtle, sending him backward as I crossed the Finish Line to win the race.

(Jay’s POV)

The man came up to me, and his face was a beet red. “That was a fluke! Your Stantler cheated!” The man told me. I laughed at him

“How did he cheat? Your Squirtle attacked my Stantler as well,” I said while smirking. I knew Stantler was going to win, I just new it.

“FINE!” The man yelled. “We shall do battle!”

“Ok,” I said, shrugging me shoulders.

I took Ieal and he took his Squirtle. We had surrounded each other in a field that was typical to your average Pokemon Stadium.

Ieal, Stantler, Lv 5 VS Squirtle, Lv 10

(Ieal’s POV)

This Squirtle looked insanely tough. It raced toward me, trying a Tackle, but l leaped aside. Squirtle may have been tougher, but I had a good attribute to back me up… Cleverness, a trait I have a feeling I got from my mother. Squirtle turned, and confronted me with a low snarl. I kept my ground, in anticipation of another assault. Squirtle let down its head, planning for a Skull Bash. I waited, not moving a muscle, making sure all of my senses were to the max.

Squirtle was tired of hanging around, so it let the Skull Bash fly. I anticipated the attack, and swerved out of the way, letting Squirtle pass through the air. When Squirtle came across my path, I let loose with a Headbutt, sending Squirtle soaring across the vicinity of snow. Squirtle beamed at me, annoyance in his evil eyes.

Squirtle ascended to its feet, and sent a hurling Ice Beam toward me. I wasn’t ready for this attack, and got hit across the face. Il shook the icy blast from my face, ignoring my fault, not letting it get to me.

Squirtle reared to attack again with a Tackle. I was ready this time. You’d think that the Squirtle would have gotten the clue by now not to attack me physically, for I would counter it. I again swerved out of the way, and let Squirtle have it with a Headbutt.

I caught Squirtle by astonishment, and launched it en route to the earth. I pursued my quarry, attacking it from behind with a Tackle. Squirtle’s HP was dwindling slowly. He kicked me in the face, forcing me to stagger backward. Squirtle rose quickly, and whirled in my direction, smacking me across the face with a Rapid Spin.

I was getting worn out, but I wasn’t going to give up so easily. Squirtle reared to attack again, but I jumped aside, smacking it with another Headbutt. Squirtle just didn’t get it, no matter which way it tried to attack me with physical strength, it just couldn’t happen. My senses told me that Squirtle’s HP were getting close to nothing now.

I was in hot pursuit, attacking Squirtle vehemently with an additional Headbutt. Critical Hit! I noted as I heard Jay’s Pokedex ring. Squirtle ascended, using Ice Beam. I was ready for one this time, and ducked. The Ice Beam caught the tip of my antlers, but it did minimal damage.

I charged forth, delivering the final blow. Squirtle attempted to rise, but I kept it down with a Tackle, followed by another Headbutt, winning the battle.

Stantler grew to level 6

I would like to note that Squirtle did hit targets, even though I did not portray that in my story. If I need to for it to be a valid battle, I will.

Lady Vulpix
17th March 2003, 01:37 PM
<Caledor's POV>

The 3rd and final event of the day was coming close and I was really excited about it. I couldn't wait to find out what I'd be doing at the course, and who I'd be competing against. But I had to wait. They took a long time to set up the whole track. I thought of looking for some friends to talk to, but Lagi had other plans. She called me and said she wanted to talk to me. I couldn't imagine what she could possibly want to talk about, but I went with her and asked her what was up.
"I'm worried about you," she said.
Now that was something I didn't expect?
"Worried? About me? But why?, what is there to worry about? I'm perfectly fun, having a great time and looking forward to having even more fun."
"True, but I noticed you had a little mood swing at the hockey game."
"Mood swing? I don't remember, but I guess everyone has them every now and then. And you're the only one who can possibly notice mine, they never last more than 5 seconds."
"That's exactly why I'm worried."
"I don't get it. Oh, wait, are you talking about the moment when the Feraligatr hurt Amber? Of course I was worried at that moment, but then things went well, so everything was fine."
"I'm not talking about that."
"Then what? Please spare me the mystery, you're scaring me."
"The thing is you don't remember being worried about yourself at all, do you? I've noticed you've been reflective many times, like there was something inside you that scared you and you didn't want t reach in and see what it was. Then you dismissed it. You always dismissed it and then forgot it. But it keeps coming back. And denying it will only hurt you. It can even stop you from enjoying life as much as you should. Your joy can never be true and full if you achieve it by blocking away your worries."
"You know, that sounded very deep, but I don't think it applies to me. I admit it, I have lots of questions about myself, and about my past, and yes, sometimes they scare me, but there's no way I'll ever find the answers to those questions, so there's nothing I can do about it. So I do the best thing I can: face front and have fun."
Lagi kneeled down and patted my back.
"I know what it feels like to have unanswered questions," she said.
"You know what everything feels like," I pointed out.
"I mean I have some of my own. You know that. Though it's true that I've never been so much in the dark; I know it was nature that made me different, or at least I'm almost sure that was the case. As for the reasons, looking for them is like looking for the purpose of life. I realized I'd have to find my own purpose, and my own reasons to be myself."
"Ok, that's all great, but..."
"I haven't finished," she said. "In your case, we know your abilities are not a product of nature, but whoever the people who did that to you were and whatever their motives were, you don't need them. You can look for your own path too."
"It's hard when you don't know what you are," I told her.
"I've been there too. But what matters is not what you are. It's who you are. And you know that very well."
"Yes, I know who I am. Though in my scariest nightmares I wonder if even my personality was built to the liking of those scientists."
"No one is capable of doing that."
"We don't know what they're capable of. I've heard of beings with tremendous psychic abilities. They can do just about anything."
"If something like that had been done to you, you wouldn't be questioning them, would you?"
"I guess you're right. Then only my body has been tampered with. Thanks, Lagi, you've taken a huge weight off my chest."
"It was a pleasure. Tell me, is that why you're scared of your psychic abilities?"
"Scared? I'm not scared of my psychic abilities. I wish I could handle them better. I mean, I wouldn't like to mess with the minds of others, or violate their privacy, but it would be great if I could predict attacks, know when someone is close or even move objects with my mind! And using telepathy to communicate would be very nice too. I can do that with you, Gabi and Ventura because your own abilities help me, and I've done it with Tsunami too, but it's easier because we're very close. It would probably work with Hero too, but it doesn't work with the others."
"Well, you've made some good achievements. I'm sure your powers will improve if you keep working on them. But you must be certain that you want them to improve."
"Why wouldn't I?"
"I don't know. You tell me. Ever since the day you evolved I had the feeling you were afraid of your powers, but I had no way to know the reason. Not without asking you, and I didn't think you were ready to talk about that until now."
"Why now?"
"Because you opened yourself to your powers during the game."
"You know, I'm not sure if my powers are scary or not, but yours definitely are."
"I know, Hero keeps telling me that. In my defense I can only say that I don't like invading anyone's privacy either, and that I'll never hurt anyone on purpose. Actually, if I hurt anyone emotionally I get hurt too."
"Ouch; now that I think of it, it mustn't be nice to be like that."
"Sometimes it is, sometimes it is it. but it's the way my life is, so I'd better make the best of it."
"Good. So what were you saying about me being scared of my powers?"
"Oh, yes, the day you evolved, even before evolving, during the battle against the Dark Cloak, you were scared of your own powers."
"I was confused," I told her. "You never know what will happen when you're confused."
"True, but confusion only mixes up what's already inside you. So you did have those worries hidden inside. And even after the battle, when you were no longer confused, I could sense your fear. You reached for the Day Stone and evolved, and then you blocked it."
That wasn't the way I remembered my evolution, but now that I thought of it some of the things she said did ring a bell. I tried to recall what had happened after that battle, and if there had been anything that had scared me at that moment.
"There were many reasons why I wanted to evolve," I finally told her. "But yes, I think one had something to do with needing to be an Espeon in order to control my psychic abilities. After that battle, my mind suddenly opened up to a sense I wasn't used to, and there was a lot of noise inside my head. That must have been what you felt. And the reason why I'd been scared before that happened, now I remember, was because of the vision I had when I touched the glowing stone with Gabi, Sandy and Ryan. It was really horrible. All of us were scared. Gabi didn't want to touch the stone again for months, remember? I guess what happened to her happened to me too. I was afraid having psychic powers might imply having more visions like that one."
"The encounter with the Dark Cloak was a terrible experience for all of us," Lagi said in a reflective tone. "I felt everybody's fear and I was afraid too. Most of their pokemon knew nothing but hate and blood-lust, while the trainers had no feelings whatsoever. It was, indeed, horrible. But that had nothing to do with being able to foresee it or not. You would have seen them sooner or later, and had it been later we wouldn't have been prepared."
"I know. I just hope something like that never, ever happens again. If it happens a thousand years from now it will be too soon."
"I agree. So, do you feel better now?"
"I feel better before we even started to talk, but it was nice to have someone to talk to about deep stuff. We could do this once a year or so."
Lagi chuckled.
"Is that how often you're planning to be serious?"
"Give or take a day," I retorted. "I'm not the serious type."
"Just be careful not to neglect your needs. I'll always be here if you want a talk. It can be lighter too."
"Ok, acknowledged," I smiled. "Now when is the Course going to start? They're sure taking their time!"
"I'm sure we'll be called soon. Let's go back with the others."

Lagi was right. We were called soon after we rejoined the group. I was lucky. This time I was the second on the list. And the first one turned out to be another Espeon! Well, her and a Squirtle - it takes 2 to race and battle. It would be good to watch her. I could get some ideas. We sat at the beginning of the track, so we could only see a small part of the race directly, but there was a pretty TV screen that showed the whole course as the race went on. Thanks to it, I soon realized I'd have to watch out for the cold water. I hoped my opponent was not a water or ice pokemon, although I knew my chances were small: over a half of the pokemon who were around today belonged to those types.
I recognized the Espeon's trainer when the screen showed him picking her up from the finish line. She had won, but she wasn't in a good shape. And he was... Ade. I wanted to slap myself for not recognizing Kirei earlier, but I had only seen her once. I hoped she'd be fine. I was glad she had won, I didn't know her too well, but she was a friend's friend while I'd never seen the Squirtle before. And she was an Espeon; seeing an Espeon win against a Water pokemon in the course was a good precedent. I wished Ade and his team would stay, so that I could see them after the course; it would have been nice to talk to Beckham again. But they left right away. I could understand them, Kirei needed medical attention and a warm bed. I decided I'd have to be very careful in order to end the Course in a better shape and be able to keep having fun afterwards.
With those thoughts, I got on the track when my name was called. I waited for my opponent, but no one came. Now I was getting annoyed. Until I heard the announcement on the loudspeaker. Then I became intrigued.
"As one of the contestants is unable to run on land, the side track has been enabled for her. The side track consists of a stream of water of 1200 meters of length. It was made longer than the original track to compensate for the advantage its users have in the water. Both competitors will meet at the pond after reaching the end of their respective tracks."
So there was a water track. Where was it, and why hadn't I seen it? And did this mean I wasn't going to see my opponent until I'd finished running along the snow path? It would be hard to know who was ahead that way. And, for what they'd said, my opponent would have to be a water pokemon. I'd have to race through the snow as fast as possible if I wanted to stand a chance. Though the battle would probably decide the result. Too many things to think of, maybe improvising would be best. Trying to contemplate all the possibilities would only be a waste of time.

The whistle blew and I dashed forward. The view ahead of me wasn't great, just a lot of snow as far as I could see. The sound of the people cheering was comforting, but it faded away as I raced further away from them. Then came a moment when I felt as if I was alone in the middle of nothing. It was a strange feeling; not bad, just strange. But I couldn't just stand there and contemplate the whiteness and the silence. I had to push forward or else my opponent would take advantage, wherever she was (the voice on the loudspeaker had referred to my opponent as 'her'). I had to admit this was the weirdest competition I'd ever seen. And I'd seen many.
Soon, the water came into sight. There were no signs of my opponent yet. It seemed like I was ahead. Either that or my opponent had already crossed the pond, but that was unlikely. I ran faster, encouraged by the thought that I was gaining ground, and reached the pond in practically no time. I didn't know I could run so fast! Of course, Hero was a lot faster than me, but I wasn't up against him. Now came the hard part. I touched the water with my paw and proved that, yes, it was cold. I was used to swimming -I'd spent a lot of time in the pool at the Eevee House-, but it would be hard to swim in such cold water. I could try to warm it up with a Flamethrower, but that would take too long. Reflect wouldn't protect me from cold water. I reckoned I'd have to get in and just move as fast as possible to get over the cold. So there I went. I took a deep breath to give me courage, kneeled down, got my front paws in, then the rest of my body, and then I screamed.
Well, I knew I'd have to endure the cold water, but I'd never said anything about enduring it in silence. I agitated my legs as fast as possible, trying to get to the other side and at the same time generate some heat. And right at that embarrassing moment, a Kingdra appeared from the side.
"So you're my opponent," the Kingdra said.
"Yes. And you're mine," I said. "Sorry if I don't talk a lot, but I'm trying to get out of here. We can talk later."
"Ok," she said, swimming to the other border as if there was nothing to it. Of course, she had been swimming 1200 meters already. She'd had time to get used to the cold. So would I if I stayed there long enough, but I didn't intend to do that. I wanted to reach the Kingdra, do whatever I had to do next and get to the finish line.
As I swam, I saw some targets appear from under the ice and even in the water. The Kingdra brought them down with perfect accuracy, using water and ice attacks. If things stayed like that, she was going to win. They'd said each of us would have to hit 5 targets, and she'd already hit 3. When the 4th one appeared, I took a long shot and used a Hydro Pump. Too much of a long shot. I didn't hit it. I could picture Ventura scolding me for that. But the Kingdra turned around to look at me, and while she did that I shot a Bubble Beam and this time I did hit straight on.
"Oh, so you're that Espeon," The Kingdra deduced.
I didn't know where she'd heard of me, but it was clear I'd lost any chances at catching her by surprise. And with that, I'd lost the factor I was best at using in my battles. I'd have to come up with something else when the time came. For now, a new target had appeared right behind the Kingdra. I moved a little to the side and shot it down with another Bubble Beam.
"Those two targets were mine," she told me. "You have to cross the pond first before shooting."
"I never heard that," I replied. "Anyway, I'm almost there."
I reached the border and got out of the water, feeling as cold outside as I'd felt when I got in. I shook my body to get the water away from my fur and some of it did leave me. About half of it, I'd say. A new target appeared on the ice, so I decided to cope with the rest of the water until it evaporated and use fire to help that happen and bring down the targets at the same time. Flamethrower worked just fine on that one, and the one that came floating on a fancy flying machine. Now I finally had the advantage again! A new target came out of the snow on the side of the ice field and... a long-range Ice Beam flew straight into it. I jumped back when I saw it, caught by surprise. Of course, iif it had been aimed at me, it would have been to late to dodge it. I realized I'd have to keep an eye on the Kingdra and not just the targets.
"Sorry that cut you so close," the Kingdra said. "But you got two of my targets, so I have to get two of yours."
"I haven't heard anything about having different targets for each of us," I insisted.
But as I said that, another target appeared behind me. I knew that from the Water Gun the Kingdra released. I turned around as fast as I could and shot a Water Gun of my own. As I was closer to the target, both attacks hit at the same time.
"I guess it's a draw," the Kingdra said. "Time to break the tie with a battle."
"Can you tell me something first?," I asked her.
"Where did you hear about me?"
"My teammates saw you at the Hockey game," she said. "I was in my pokeball, but they told me about an Espeon who glowed in different colors and used attacks of many types."
"Oh. Were your teammates the ones who played against my team?"
"No, they were watching. They played right after you did."
"Oh, I missed that match."
"How did you get those powers?"
"I'm a prize pokemon," I told her.
It was incredible how that answer seemed to satisfy almost everyone. It would never be enough for me. Saying that and saying nothing at all was just about the same. But for most, that seemed to be enough of an explanation. They never seemed to wonder where prize pokemon came from. Weird, but for me it was good; it saved me from giving a lot of explanations I didn't want to go through.
"Shall we battle now?," I asked her.
"You read my mind."
"Though there's a chance that I may be able to do that in the future, I didn't."
I faced the Kingdra and got ready to attack.

Level 44 Espeon vs. Level 50 Kingdra

Thanks to the years I'd spent living with Water Angel, I knew the strengths and weaknesses of a Kingdra. Water and Fire attacks were out of the question, which left me with two types of attacks to use: Electric, which I was most used to and comfortable with, and Psychic, which were supposed to be stronger for being of my own type. I'd probably have to use both, while the Kingdra was bound to use Water and Ice attacks just like the ones she'd used to hit the targets. I decided to start off with a Psychic attack. It was safest, since I still had some water on me and I didn't want to risk shocking myself. It was a good start.
"Oh, so you can use the attacks of a normal Espeon too," the Kingdra said.
Actually, I couldn't use all of them, but I had no reason to let her know that.
The Kingdra shot an Ice Beam at me. Now I felt even colder than before. I was glad I wasn't as sensitive to extreme temperatures as Sylvan was. But even Gabi would have shivered if she'd been in my place. I used Psychic again, and this time I was hit with a blast of icy water from the pond. I guessed it was a Surf attack, though it didn't look like others I had seen. And it felt much colder than usual.
I had to do something. If the Kingdra dumped another wave on me like that, I might freeze. I ran away from her reach to gain some time and get dry. She tried to shoot Ice Beams and Bubble Beams at me, but I was too far away. She yelled at me, said that I was cheating, but I wasn't planning to leave the battle unfinished. I only needed to warm up. I shot fire at the sky, hoping that it would help me somehow.
"I've had too much of this!," the Kingdra complained. "If you're not going to battle I'll get to the finish line."
She dived under the water. There had to be an underground tunnel that would send her past the finish line or something like that. I couldn't let her go without finishing the battle. I rushed back to the border of the pond and released a Thunder into the water. Some of it just had to hit her. I felt the electricity surge through me and get out, then flow through the whole pond. Finally, the Kingdra came back to the surface. She looked dizzy.
"Oh, ok," she said. "I like it better this way."
She took a deep breath and I instantly knew that what was coming next would be very cold. I could run, but not to far or else the Kingdra would get down again and this time she would make it into the tunnel and on to the finish line. So I had to run to the side. But which side?


I wouldn't turn back from a hunch when it came. I jumped to the left just in time to avoid the coldest attack of the day: a Blizzard. The strong wind headed slightly to my right and that was what saved me. Now I had to make sure not to mess up. I decided to put my mental abilities to good use while they were cooperating, and released another Psychic attack. That did the trick. The Kingdra fell on her back and floated on the surface of the water. She didn't have any strength left to attack. I turned around and ran to the finish line. When I reached it, I jumped with joy. I had won!

And I grew to level 45! Yay!

Well, I was still cold and rather agitated, but I was filled with excitement and that overly made up for all the annoyances. I looked past the finish line and saw there was a small pond a few meters away, so that proved my theory of the tunnel. Well, it didn't really prove it, but it supported it. I began to walk back to the start, but I was intercepted. I heard a voice shouting at me before I could see its owner.
"Hydro Pump?! On a shooting target? What were you thinking?!"
"Oh, hi, Ventura," I replied. "I knew you'd say that. But I won, didn't I?"
The Venomoth, who was flying behind me, came in front of me and turned to face me.
"You were lucky. If that Blizzard had hit you, you wouldn't be telling the tale."
"Yes, I was lucky, so sue me. Luck often plays an important role in battles. Doesn't Gabi always say that?"
"Well, there are always things you can't predict, but you should do your best to minimize your need for luck. You can't rely on something you can't count on. You could have used a Thunder Wave to start with, and then..."
"Can't you congratulate me for once?," I complained. "You're always so harsh. Relax and enjoy! I came here to have fun, not to take a class on battling."
"Did you have fun?"
"Yes, I did."
Ventura sighed. She had no arguments against that.
"Now that Kingdra made some interesting moves," Ventura commented, changing the subject. "Though she could have used Agility to get to the pond before you and get to hit first. She wasn't that smart at that. But what called my attention was the fact that her strategy was totally different from Water Angel's. No Smokescreen-Toxic combo. Instead she used all-out attacks. A fast finisher. I'm still wondering which of the two strategies works best for a Kingdra."
"I guess this one works best for this Kingdra and the one Water Angel uses works best for her," I opined, resuming my walk.
"It only works until all her opponents have seen her do it and are able to predict her moves. Using the same attacks again and again is not recommendable."
"I never do that."
"Hey, do you want me to teleport you back with the others?"
I paused to think. I liked walking, but it was a bit too cold for my liking, and the sooner we rejoined the team, the sooner I'd get a chance to warm up and watch the rest of the competition.
"Hmm... ok," I accepted.
Ventura took me back with the others, who gave me a warmer welcome than she had, and congratulated me and rubbed my back and put their paws on my face... well, the last part was accidental; Tsunami bumped into Hero causing him to trip and fall on me. Amber, who was fine by now, sat me on her lap and kept me warm as we watched the rest of the races. Everything was fine. Everything was fun! I could really get used to taking part in competitions. We should get out more often. :)

Lady Vulpix
17th March 2003, 01:46 PM
That was nice, J. Take 8 stamps! ¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢

17th March 2003, 02:12 PM
Thanks, Gabi! Since you have finally written your battle for this scenario, I have a feeling that one is going to be up soon, so I would like to have an extension on this scenario if it's not too much to ask.:)

Lady Vulpix
17th March 2003, 02:26 PM
It's not too much to ask. :) You can have your extension, J. It's good to know you've decided to give this scenario a chance.

17th March 2003, 06:15 PM
Well, its not my best, but i'm happy with it. I seem to be having a bit of writer's block lately but i think i'm getting over it. I would like a time extension though, because i doubt i will finish in time.

(Sugar's POV)

I can’t say that I wasn’t annoyed, because I was. Amy and Steve had agreed to cancel my battle with Nave, but I understood why. I paced about restlessly, working off some of my excess energy. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw Nala’s pack. It looked slightly more full than usual. I froze, slowly turning to face the backpack as if it were an opponent. I strained my ears to see if I could hear anyone. Silence. Nala was upstairs studying or something, while the others were scattered throughout the house doing their own thing. Crouching low to the ground, I stalked my prey. Once I felt that I was close enough, I rushed in and tackled it. My prey fell over, its contents spilling out. I looked down, as memories came flooding back. The last time that I had gotten into Nala’s pack without her knowing it, was the day I evolved at the Eevee House a long time ago.

*Begin flashback*

I heard laughing. Please don’t it be him, I thought. My fears were confirmed, as I turned around. Jesse had heard me telling Nala how I felt about him. What made it was, was the fact that he was laughing as if it was the funniest thing that he had ever heard. My eyes began to water as I struggled not to let them fall. I ran over to where Jesse was and gave him a hard tail whip across the face. Then I turned tail and ran, letting the tears fall. They left two streaks down my light brown fur. I retreated to the safety of my pokeball. Later, I emerged. I heard M_K and Nala talking and they didn’t notice that I was out. Shrugging, I didn’t mind. I wanted to be left alone for a little while. The flap on Nala’s pack was open. I decided to go have a closer look. As I drew closer a glint of yellow caught my attention. Upon closer inspection, I gasped. It was a thunderstone. I jumped into the bag right as Nala discovered my empty pokeball. “Where’s Sugar?” I heard her ask. At that moment, I grabbed the thunderstone in my mouth as I felt myself being lifted. A white glow enveloped me, as I changed in Nala’s arms. My chocolate brown fur turned a lustrous golden yellow and became spiky. I felt myself growing taller. Within seconds it was all over, I had evolved. Nala chuckled as she hugged me. “What am I going to do with you?” she asked, before she placed me on the floor, letting me go play.

*End flashback*

A small tear trickled down my face as my thoughts returned to Jesse and Torrey. I missed them so much. What comforted me was the fact that I knew that they were happy, and M_K took good care of them. I took a deep breath, before wiping the tears off my face with my paw. Once more, I focused my attention on the packs contents strewn across the floor. I sighed, before focusing on cleaning up the mess I made. “Sugar, what are you doing?” a cheerful voice asked. I smiled, turning around to greet the houndour. “Hi, Yana. I was just cleaning up the mess I made when I was trying to get rid of some excess energy.” I answered as I began to put some of the items back into the pack. “Do you need any help?” she asked. “Sure,” I answered her smiling. She nodded as she got to work. I saw three small boxes, and upon closer look it was evident that they were TMs. I smiled as I carefully hid them in the pack. I knew that Nala liked to surprise us with TMs every once in a while and I had a hunch to which of us they were for. I looked to see if Yana was watching, and she wasn’t. I quickly stuffed them under a pile of plushies. With the two o us working, we had it cleaned up in no time at all. “Thanks for your help,” I told her. She grinned, “I’m just glad that I could help. I watched as she trotted off.

“Sugar, could you come here please?” I heard Nala call. I looked back, to make sure that we hadn’t missed anything, before leaving. She was smiling when I had found her. “Are you up for a battle at the battle tower?” she asked. “You bet!” I told her.

(Kiara’s POV)

Yawning, I climbed to my paws and stretched. Once I was awake and fully alert, I began to smooth out the fur in my mane. It was rather untidy with fur sticking out in every direction imaginable. I heard voices in the next room, however I waited until I was presentable before entering the room. Turns out that Amy had arranged for Sugar to have another battle.

Amy greeted me warmly. “Hey Kiara, how are you?” she asked as she rubbed my head between me ears. It was great to see her relaxed again. She had been so stressed these last few weeks. “That’s always good to hear,” she replied. After a few seconds of silence, Amy spoke again. “Kiara, do you think you could find Yana for me? I have a couple of surprises for her." I nodded yes, before leaving to search for Aiyana. It didn’t take me long to find her. She was on the back porch watching Blazer and Talut having a training session. I sat down beside her as we watched the pair. It was always interesting to watch those two. They always tried to outwit each other, most of the time not succeeding because they knew each other so well, although there were occasions where one of them would succeed. Eventually, they took a break, and I finally got a chance to talk with Yana. She smiled and greeted me with her usual cheerful self. “Nala wanted me to find you,” I said figuring it was better to get straight to the point than beating around a bush. “Did I do something wrong?” she asked. I smiled reassuringly. “No, she has a couple of surprises for you.” The houndour seemed to relax somewhat. “Ok, let’s go.” With that, we went inside.

(Nala’s POV)

Shortly after Kiara left to find Aiyana, I went into the other room to get my pack, with Sugar following me. I grabbed the pack, and fished around until I found the tm boxes and then pulled out two of them. It as at that precise moment, that Kiara and Aiyana returned. Yana looked slightly nervous, until I showed her the TM boxes. A smile crept across her muzzle as her tail started wagging ninety to nothing.

I opened the first box which had a picture of a sun carved in it. “Ok, the first TM is Sunny day.” I smiled as I sprinkled the powder over her. “I also have a hidden power TM. The powder stood out against Yana’s ebony coat, but within seconds it was gone, and she had learned a new move.

Aiyana learned Sunny Day!

Next, I picked up the other box, which contained the hidden power TM. It had a question mark carved in it. I repeated the process, exactly as I did with the sunny day TM.

(Aiyana’s POV)

When the last traces of the TM powder faded away, I wanted to test it to see what it was. The others looked curious as well. My eyes surveyed the room, and landed on a plastic Tootsie Roll bank. I closed my eyes and concentrated, trying to connect and harness the new power that coursed through me. I opened my eyes, to see the bank surrounded in a pink glow and floating. When I lost my concentration it crashed to the ground. Ok, it’s either psychic or flying, I thought to myself. I gulped, before attempting to try it out on myself. If it was psychic, I had nothing to fear. However, if I was wrong and it was flying, then I’d most likely have a very nasty fall in store for me. Seconds ticked by, and when nothing happened, I sighed in relief. “Psychic,” I said. “My hidden power is psychic.” Out of the corner of my eye, I saw Kovu enter the room. He was carrying what looked like a flyer in his mouth.

I learned Hidden Power Psychic!

(Nala’s POV)

I was about to go into the study to straighten up a bit, when Kovu entered the room. He was smiling, carrying a folded up piece of paper in his mouth. He walked over to me and I took the flyer from him and unfolded it. It was an ad for some sort of winter games. I read the introduction aloud to the members of my team that were in the room.

Winter is here. The contrast to summer. It is a time for cold, for snow and for the other side of the world to enjoy summer. But don't despair! For it is time for:

The Winter Games!

The flyer went on to describe the events. There was going to be an ice-skating race, a hockey game, and a course. “Well, this does sound interesting. Let’s round up everyone and see who wants to participate.” It didn’t take long for the word to spread among my team, and within in minutes, everyone was gathered around. Well, almost everyone. Jasmine was asleep upstairs, but I didn’t think this was the right type of even for her anyway. I read to them everything that the flyer said about each event. “I’d like to give the skating race a shot,” Yana let us know in a quiet voice. I nodded and put her name down on the paper, this way it wouldn’t take as long when we had to fill out the entry forms anyway. Kovu was the next to speak. “I’d like to give the course my best shot. It sounds like it will be fun.” I nodded and wrote his name down on the flyer. “Ok, that just leaves the hockey match.” I had to chuckle at what happened next. Like father, like son. Salem and Simba spoke at the exact same time, saying the exact same thing, “I want to do the hockey game.” “Ok,” I answered, smiling. “That means we need one more pokemon within your level range and not of the same type. Sorry Sweetie and Ayla.” Sugar stretched, before answering, ”Count me out. I doubt my battle will be finished in time anyways.” Neither Dodger nor Flame was interested, so that left Kiara and Sparky. I’d like to give it a try,” Sparky finally said. Kiara nodded, showing that she was ok with the decision. I jotted their names down. Salem grinned, “Our opponents won't be much of a match for the Triple S Threat.” Kiara chuckled, but told Salem that while having confidence was good, not to become too cocky. Once we were done, our team got ready to go to the Eevee House where we could get some practice in.

17th March 2003, 09:09 PM
I recalled Ieal to his Pokeball, and left The River Races. I walked up a hill that was covered in snow. On the other side of the hill, there were Ice Skating Races and Hockey Matches. I went over to the hockey grounds to see what was up.

Hockey Matches Today!
3 on 3 matches!
Same type of Pokemon on each team
Ex: Water, Water, Water
Ground, Ground, Ground

This sounded like fun, but the only Pokemon that I would be able to use without being disqualified would be Draco, Blazer, and Ebony. That would work, but I didn’t know how I would assemble a team when none of the have ever held a hockey stick before. I released them, and gave them a little pep talk.

“Blazer, Draco, and Ebony, you three are going to compete in a hockey match against three other Pokemon. The object of the game is to actually win the hockey match, not defeat the Pokemon. Ok?” They looked at me, and seemed to understand. I looked at the sheet that said which Pokemon team they would be up against. “Ok, you guys are going to be going up against a Squirtle, Smoochum, and a Swinub. You guys can do this.”

I gave them their hockey sticks, and they all went onto the court.

(Draco’s POV)

I looked over at the other team. They were all ice types, except the Squirtle. This should be easy, but I shouldn’t underestimate the Squirtle. “Ebony, Blazer, come here” I told them. They came over to me.

“What up, Draco?” Blazer asked, wondering why I had called him. I kept glancing over at the other team, seeing where they were going to position themselves. Squirtle was the goalie, which worked for us, as well as against us.

“Blazer, I want you to be all over that Swinub, don’t let him come near our goal. Ebony, you get Smoochum, since you have a type advantage over her. Ebony, if Smoochum gets too close to the puck, let her have it with Crunch, ok? I’ll be goalie, as will Squirtle. Let’s get em!”

We took our places among the hockey ring, and got ready. Ebony was going to be playing for the tip, against the Smoochum.

(Ebony’s POV)

“All I’m going to say to you, is you better stay away from the puck. I’m going to be all over the ring with you,” I said as the puck was released. I swung my hockey stick, and took it down the ring. Blazer was on the other side, and was being followed by Swinub, but at a far distance. We were too fast for them to keep up. Squirtle was ready for me, and as I came into shooting distance, he let loose with a Bubble attack. I passed the puck to Blazer, and avoided the Bubble Blast.

I ran out of the way of the bubbles, just to see Blazer score. 1-0!

(Blazer’s POV)

I scored, this was going to be way easier than I thought it would. Squirtle passed it to Smoochum, who began to take it down the ring. Ebony stopped her, and used Crunch, and slammed her against the side of the ring. I rushed over, and got the puck from Smoochum, only to have it stolen by Swinub. I rushed after him, and bit him in the side. He lost the puck, and I passed it to Ebony. Ebony rushed in for another point, but was stopped as Squirtle let loose with a bubble attack. He lost the puck, and Squirtle passed it up to Smoochum. She took it down the side of the ring, and was close to scoring, but was stopped by Draco’s whirling tail. Draco retrieved the puck, and sent it in my direction. I rushed down the ring, closing in on Squirtle. I knew his plan, and passed the puck to Ebony just as soon as Squirtle inhaled. Ebony smacked the puck with his hockey stick for another point. 2-0

<Ebony’s POV>

This was too easy. Smoochum was afraid of me now, meaning I had the upper hand on my side of the ring. Squirtle passed it to Swinub, who passed it to Smoochum. I crept behind her, and used another Crunch attack. The puck left her grasp, and I chased after it. I smacked the puck, and sent it all the way down to Blazer, on the other side of the ring. Blazer did some quick maneuverings, confusing Squirtle, and then scored for another point. 3-0

Smoochum had the puck on the other side of the court. I chased after her, and was about to attack her with another Crunch when she passed the ball to Swinub. Swinub took it down near Draco, and scored. 3-1

Draco brought the puck out, and passed it to Blazer, who dodged past Swinub, and passed it to me. I took the puck, and scored. Unfortunately, I was hit by the Bubble attack. 4-1

Squirtle brought it out, and passed it to Smoochum. I sprinted toward Smoochum, and attacked it with Crunch, knocking it out. I took the puck, and passed it to Blazer, who made the final score. We won 5-1

Squirtle and Swinub were enraged, and rushed toward us.

Swinub & Squirtle Lv. 10 VS Ebony lv 7, Blazer lv 6, Draco lv 6

I went straight for Squirtle, since he was the toughest, and so did Blazer. We continuously bit Squirtle, but he made us back off by using Bubble. Meanwhile, Draco was busy dealing with Swinub. Draco used a Bite attack on Swinub, and kept avoiding his attacks.

Blazer and I went in for another round of biting. We hit the Squirtle hard, almost knocking him out. Draco used another Bite on Swinub, along with a Scratch. Squirtle was concentrating on Blazer, so I went in for the KO with a Crunch. Draco finished the fight with Swinub by attacking with Scratch, and two Bites.

I don’t think I did this scenario right…… please tell me how to fix it.

17th March 2003, 09:55 PM
Originally posted by Nala98
You can only have one of a particular type on each team.

Jay - i'm afraid you're right about it not being right. You're supposed to have only one of a type on a team and not three of the same kind. Like: psychic, grass, and fire, or normal, psychic and dark.

17th March 2003, 10:18 PM
Ok, other than that, did i do anything wrong?

Lady Vulpix
18th March 2003, 08:41 AM
Nice intro, Amy! I'm sure I'll enjoy reading the rest of your stories for this scenario. And of course you can have a time extension. :)

I'm going to the Eevee House now, so expect something from me there in 15 minutes or so (I'm a slow writer, I need to round up every sentence before getting it down).

20th March 2003, 05:47 PM
I've decided to write for this scenario, its been a while. [Once again, lol] So, I'm probably going to need some more time. May I have a time extension?

Lady Vulpix
21st March 2003, 07:44 AM
Of course! Welcome back, M_K!

22nd March 2003, 01:41 AM
Wow, I slowed almost completely to a stop because of my vacation. I'm forcing myself to do this now. Writer's block is evil. ^_^

Switchblade the *male* Porygon's POV:

Argh, it was freezing! If I haven't said it before(which I'm sure I have), I HATE COLD WEATHER! The creepy Squirtle that kept snickering at me wasn't helping me feel better, either. She had this really, really weird expression on her face... It looked evil and pretty scary. Of course, that might've just been the cold screwing up my circuits.

What I had to do sounded like fun, at first, and not particularly difficult: cross a kilometer of icy water, destroy five target balloons, dash over half a kilometer of ice, then beat my opponent in a battle at the end. But that was when I was inside - being out in the cold was a different story. My trainer was probably the only one who'd understand. Evenstar and Nimrodel felt fine in the cold; icy places were natural for Sneasel and Lapras, who were born to tolerate such weather. Élan always burned with inner flame; he would never let anything stand in his way, and because people ridiculed him for being an Unown, his driving force for prevailing was ever greater. But like me, my trainer also couldn't stand the cold much at all, either.

So obviously, when I had to get out here in a rather undignified manner, with the wind's frozen breath stinging at my face, I didn't really find it very enjoyable. I frowned at myself. Why was I so pessimistic these days? I used to have nothing to care about in the world. I used to be carefree and joyous. Was my mind maturing - would I grow up, like Evenstar had already done? I couldn't understand completely; but I did notice that I had changed, greatly, in every imaginable way: from the way I spoke and thought to the way I enjoyed myself. The change was very sudden. What had forced it to be that way? I had a long life, a long time still to grow. What triggered my change? Why did it seem so urgent that I did?

As if to answer my question, the image that had bothered me most for the past few months flashed before my eyes: Fat Mike, as my trainer now called him, with that ugly scar on his mocking face; and that cruel sneer; and his sour breath and yellow teeth. He was a nasty man, and his Porygon2 equally evil.

A shudder went through me as I thought about the Porygon2. What Mad Mike had done to it was inhuman, unnatural. I remembered its supernatural speed; its cold, piercing glare; its lack of life, but abundance of strength and power. I did not want to know what Mad Mike had done to alter that poor Porygon2 into its horrible state. It was true that I wanted strength myself, but not that way - never that way. The Porygon2 was once a pokémon who had feelings and a soul; but now, to tell the truth, I could not say what it was, even if I tried to pursue the answer for millenia. Now, it was a mere engine of destruction, a device of Mad Mike and his evil.

The Squirtle looked at me irritably, clearing her throat deliberately and stamping her foot on the snow. Great, I thought to myself, Now Mad Mike's face has to interrupt me when i'm doing work, too. Can't he and his freaky Porygon2 leave me alone for once?

"Sorry," I said out loud, "Just... preoccupied."

"Let's just get this over with," she replied.

Switchblade the *male* Porygon LV10 vs. female Squirtle LV10

Well, I couldn't have gotten off to a worse start. The Squirtle, who had been lingering near the water's edge for the past ten minutes while my mind had drifted off, was warmed up and ready for the intense swim. She dove right into the icy waters and sped off in an instant. Her rate of acceleration surprised me; but then I guess that's because everything else seemed to happen so slowly. The cold was getting to my head.

As for me, on the other hand, I got stuck for a terribly long time, trying to push myself forward - you know how sometimes you just don't feel like getting up because you feel so comfortable? That's exactly how I felt. Except it was because I was so uncomfortable that I really couldn't get myself to move. I felt nearly completely frozen inside-out, and that was an understatement. To put things bluntly, I felt like a big shocking magenta and ice blue popsicle. The wind had stopped blowing, which was a relief, but it didn't change the fact that it was twenty degrees below freezing temperature outside. I was just what I felt like: a poor popsicle, insignificant and forlorn, trapped in the vast expanses of an imprisoning coldddddd freezer that stretched on for an eternity into frozen, empty wastelands of white upon white. What a day.

By the time my will to move on actually kicked in, the Squirtle was more than a minute and a half away, just a tiny speck on the frozen horizon. I had no more time to lose; I had spent all my allowance already, and more. I really didn't want to give up before I even tried the course, although the evils of winter threatened to claim me at any moment. It just wasn't me. I might have changed a lot, but I was still Switchblade; and I didn't like losing battles that I did not try to fight.

With that, I moved on with an increasing sense of urgency; I had to catch up to that Squirtle. If I didn't complete all my other tasks and make it to the final battle arena in the set amount of time after my opponent arrived, I would be disqualified. I really couldn't waste even a second more.

A cold, blue glow outlined my shivering body as I concentrated as best I could, lifting myself a substantial distance above the snow. If I would not swim in the freezing waters, I would fly over them. I propelled myself forwards with magical speed, effortlessly despite the cold that had begun to seep into me. With my Psychic and Agility abilities combined, I sailed across the stretching expanse of waters like a gliding hovercraft, joyously free. I could feel bits of my old self seeping into me, like a warmth that banished the cold from my heart and made me carefree again. Then I knew what it was that I had been missing lately: simple, uncorrupted fun. At that moment - for which I praised myself later - I thought, like I always used to do, that I could not be happier; not a single thought of Mad Mike, nor any kind of worry, crossed my mind to destroy my elation.

I know that it was only a large, manmade pool, but at that cherished moment, in my imagination, I could almost taste the salty ocean spray that splashed gently across my face as I chased the fleeing waves; hear the sea birds singing their cheerful song; feel warm, golden sunlight beam down upon me; and smell the excitement in the air, the glory of adventure and conquest. There really couldn't have been a better moment, a better view of the cold, bleak world; I had conquered the winter, and it would not stand in my way of enjoying myself again.

In my endless tirade against the cold weather that I loathed, I had forgotten the simple things that I stood for and genuinely enjoyed: the freedom to explore the great outdoor world, the glory of competition, and the challenge of battle. Now that I knew it, I would not so foolishly allow the discomforts of the cold to take away my happiness.

It was as if a new day had dawned, fresh with hope; for, as I dashed continually forward, feeling not the stress of exhaustion, I caught sight of the Squirtle up ahead, reaching out to pop one of her sky blue target balloons that lay on an iceberg. My turquoise one lay nearby, to the right; but instead of going off course to get to it, I burst it with a small jolt of electricity as I shot by, purposely quick so that my opponent would not get a chance to realize what it was before we engaged in battle. In that way, I caught up to the Squirtle and overtook her with my speed.

The next three balloons were easy. I could spot the turquoise targets bobbing up and down in the water like buoys; it proved unnecessary to reveal my Thunderbolt again. As I got close to each one, I pushed it into a piece of ice nearby to pop it and swerved back onto course, never losing much speed in the process. I could hear the Squirtle behind me; the constant grinding of her shell against the ice above as she swam swiftly reminded me that I could not slow down. Her blue target balloons were similarly easy to get to, and she did not lose much time.

The last target for me was floating high in the air, but the Squirtle was right behind me, and using my Thunderbolt to destroy it would spoil my element of surprise for later. Instead, although my mind was very weary by now, I raised myself further upwards, and shot up into the air; and, releasing my grip slightly when I got there, I dove and took out the final turquoise balloon. The Squirtle, who could not do that, instead fired a stream of colorful bubbles that exploded upon her last blue balloon and burst it.

I didn't quite catch myself before I fell into the cold water, but it turned out all right in the end. I regained my grip, and I really didn't get submerged or anything as bad as that. For the final stretch of the water, I forced my mental strength to stay steady, and not waver; but I knew that it was getting worse, because I dragged along in the water, sometimes hitting blocks of floating ice. Finally, I reached the banks of the huge pool, and began to climb. The Squirtle overtook me here, but I didn't quite care; I was just relieved that my mental ordeal was over for now. I would need to save some of that power for later, if I wanted to keep advantages in the upcoming battle.

Happily enough, the 500 meters of ice before the battle arena were relaxing on my body and mind. I remained behind the Squirtle, but not very far; she was exhausted, having kept up with me for such a prolonged period of time. I took that final 500 meters easily, neither straining to catch up nor gain speed. I got a lot of rest from that crucial end. The Squirtle was obviously saving her energy, too; she knew that the final battle was up ahead.

What was nice about the track that we followed was the fact that it cut back in a clever way and led us closer and closer to the lodge area where my trainer was waiting and watching our progress on the screens inside along with the rest. The battle arena was a circular indentation in the snow not too far away, surrounded by a ring of magnificent, snow-laden pine trees. It was a strange arena - shaped like a lower hemisphere, so that it went inwards like a bowl.

For a brief instant, I went over in my head all I had gone through to get here, and it made me feel proud - I deserved to be here now, to fight the final battle and emerge the victor, or, if I didn't win, come out all the more enriched with valuable experience. The Squirtle, too, paused momentarily; but then she became impatient again, and beckoned for me to enter the arena.

"Finally, I can defeat you and go home," she said.

Not a very pleasant note, but it was the first thing that she said since she asked me to hurry up and begin the course. I chose not to respond.

After all I had done, it all boiled down to this final battle. I smiled, knowing at least that, whatever the outcome, I would be happy - whether because I had won, or because I had tried my best.

The Squirtle, eager to end, began with the most powerful Ice type attack available to her; and it was cold, and harsh; and I did not like it. The arctic winds howled in my face, and the frozen ice shards slashed whatever the lashing whip of the winds missed. It was the most terrible feeling I had had in all the time that I had lived. I really wasn't too keen on feeling it again soon.

So, I did what it was best to do: build a resistance. I think the Squirtle was very disappointed when she saw my aura of white light; for, when I was revealed again, my body was no longer what it used to be. Now, it sparkled with the dazzling radiance of the snow, and was silvery and clear, like crystal; and when light bathed my coat, it produced a glorious sheen, a pure, beautiful luster, characteristic only of ice.

I proceeded to dash at the Squirtle and crash headfirst into her before she could think of reacting; she was thrown into a pine tree at the edge of the arena, but I managed to avoid it.

"Converting will not save you," I heard her whisper, as she got up slowly, shakily to her feet. With a tremendous war cry, she charged forth, and grabbed my by the neck; and before I knew it, I was sailing high through the air, bound for the trunk of a particularly spiny pine tree.

This was where the crucial mental rest came in handy. Before I crashed, I slowed myself, with sheer will, and carefully lowered myself to the ground below. The Squirtle was not happy, to say the least.

She pouted, but before I came to attack her again, she drew herself into her shell. Not a single bit of her limbs or head showed. All I could see were the black holes into which she has retreated.

And then I thanked my better judgement, for concealing my secret weapon. I sparked with vicious intensity, but when the Squirtle noticed, it was too late; I sent the redoubled bolts directly into the gaping holes in the protective shell, watching the electricity surge inside...

The Squirtle, greatly weakened, showed herself, and attempted to run and hide; but I was too quick, and again assailed her with the brutal lightning; and this time, she fell, and did not get up. I had won.

Switchblade won!
Switchblade grew to LV11!

Lady Vulpix
22nd March 2003, 07:54 AM
That was great, Karin! Take 10 stamps! ¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢

22nd March 2003, 03:44 PM

I walked over towards the race track. It wouldn’t be that far from the lodge that I was staying at. Surrender was at my side. He looked very happy, and I thought he was a good choice for this race. I smiled and picked up some snow and balled it up into a ball. I turned around and threw it at Surrender. Surrender laughed and picked up some snow as well and threw it. I jumped out of the way before the snow could hit me. I looked at my watch. It said: 12:00. I thought for a moment. The sign that I had seen said that the race started at 8:00 sharp. I had a lot of time to waste. I turned to Sneasel.

“Sneasel, what do you want to do with all this free-time that we have before the race?” I asked Sneasel.

Sneasel put his head down in thought. Then he raised his head up and smiled. I couldn’t really tell what he was trying to say, but I guessed.

“So, you want to play in the snow?” I asked.

Sneasel nodded his head. Then he started to tell me something else.

“And you want to train for the race?” I asked.

Sneasel nodded again. I may not know pokemon language, but I’m still pretty good at it. I smiled and laughed. Soon, Sneasel grabbed another pile of snow and threw it at me. It hit my head, and the snow matted in my hair. I laughed and picked up some snow as well. I threw it at Sneasel, but he moved out of the way.

“Ok, Sneasel, I think that’s enough of this throwing snow,” I said. “Maybe we should start to train some for that race?” I asked.

Sneasel nodded his head again and started to run off behind me. I chased after him. I wanted to know where he was taking me…

Surrender’s POV

I ran off from my master to get to a special place to train. He was pretty good at guessing what I was thinking but not well enough. I could feel him behind me, running after me. I laughed at my cunning plan and continued to run towards the distance. Soon, I had grown tired. I stopped behind a giant snow ball to rest. But, my owner had caught up to me. I sighed.

“Why did you run away,” Matt asked. “I could have lost you forever,” he continued.

I just sat down on the cold snow and listened to him. Matt looked down at me and could tell I wasn’t listening. He picked me up off the snow. He smiled at me and patted me on the head.
“It’s ok Surrender, he said, I was just really worried about you, that’s all” he continued.

I smiled at him, for I knew that he was a great trainer. He put me on his shoulder and we walked on, in the same direction that I had been running. There was this big hill that we had to get over. I didn’t know if we could, though. Matt started to walk up the hill in an angle. I started to slide off his shoulder. I yelled in fear.

“Snnnnnnnnnnneeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee,” I said.

Matt turned around to see me hanging on to the edge of his shirt. He picked me up and held me in his arms. We continued to go up the hill. Finally, we got to the top. When we did, we could see a big giant circle. The circle had piles of snow in the middle. It looked like a place that a pokemon had made. Matt looked around to see if he could find a sign, but he didn’t find any. So that means that this place that we had found, wasn’t the official place to race.

Matt ran down the hill to get over towards the racing place. As soon as we got to it, he put me down on the ground. We walked closer to it. It was a big place to race in. I jumped up and down so Matt would notice me. He looked down at me and smiled.

“Do you want to train here,” he asked me.

I nodded. This was going to be really fun racing here. I looked around and I could see that it was a really long run around this place. Matt squatted down at me. He looked concerned.

“Who are we going to get to race you, Surrender” he asked me.

I ran up beside Matt and pushed one of the pokeballs at his side. A Stantler, by the name of Stanty, popped out onto the snow. Stanty yawned as soon as she got out of that cooped up pokeball. She looked down at me.

“Did you need something, Surrender?” She asked.

“Nah, but now that you mention it I did need to ask you something” I said.

“Well, what is it?” Stanty asked in an annoyed voice.

“Lets see… I’m starting to train for the race that is going to be held tonight, and I was wondering if you would like to help me train,” I said to Stanty.

“Well, ok I’ll help,” she said with joy.

We looked over towards Matt who was still wondering who to pick to race me. I walked over towards him and pulled on his jeans leg. I pointed over towards Stanty.

“So you want Stanty to help you train” he asked.

I nodded.

“Well let’s start training then” he said.

I smiled and motioned for Stanty to come over towards me. We listened to Matt as he explained what to do on these races.

“Ok, this is whats going to happen,” he said. “You two are going to start at the line I just made, and run around this big oval thingy about 8 times. This place isn’t as big as the real track, but its close enough to the real one” he continued. “Now, let’s start the race” he finished.

Stanty and I walked over towards where Matt was standing. We got our feet lined up with the line that we were supposed to start at, and we got ready for the race. Matt was standing at the side cheering me on. Then, Matt got out a piece of cloth and tied it on a stick that was laying near-by. He walked over to where we were and put it over us. He was going to wave the flag, which means to start to race. He moved his arm up, and waved the flag. Stanty flew off, and so did I. Matt walked back over towards the side and started to cheer me on again.

I had to somehow get in front of Stanty. She wasn’t that far away from me, but I still needed to get an early lead. I started to run faster to get in front of her. Stanty moved her head to the side and saw me coming behind her. She started to run faster, too. We came to a corner that wasn’t very noticeable. I could see Stanty turning it. Then I head a loud yell. I ran over towards the corner to see Stanty lying on the ground. She had tripped over a pile of snow. I wanted to help her, but I needed to train for this race. I passed her and frowned and continued to run. I was about mid point of the next side when Stanty came up beside me. She had gotten up off the ground and was now ready for more running. I frowned again as she passed by me. I started to run faster to catch up with her, but I couldn’t do it. Stanty passed the line that we had started at. She was now on lap two. I soon passed it as well. I saw Matt still cheering me on. These cheers seem to of given me the confidence to win this race and beat that Stantler.

I was now running at a good enough speed to maybe catch up to Stantler. She started to turn the same corner again, this time with more caution. I turned the corner as well. She hadn’t fallen over the same snow glob this time. I ran past the snow glob and started on the other side of the race track. Stantler wasn’t that far ahead of me. I started to run faster, but not to fast so I wouldn’t lose all my energy on the second lap. Stantler started to slow down a little. She was loosing energy. I saw this time perfect to get ahead. I ran faster, and finally got past her. I smiled as I past her and started to run towards the line. I passed the line meaning that I am on lap three now. I continued to run. I looked behind me to see that Stantler had passed the line now, and she looked angry. I turned around, but I ran straight into a big pile of snow. I fell on the ground with my hands by my side. I got up and looked around for Stantler. She had passed me! I needed to think of something good to get past her.

I got up off the snow and started to run again. I turned the corner, but I couldn’t see Stantler any where. She had already turned it. I kept running to see that she was almost to the line again. I didn’t know what to do. I might lose if I didn’t catch up. I started to run faster. Maybe if I run fast I can catch up to her. I got over towards the line again. As soon as I passed it, I felt pain. I was loosing a lot of energy from running this whole time. I turned the corner to see Stantler standing in one place, panting. I ran over towards her, ignoring the pain.

“Why have you stopped running?” I asked her.

“Well I can’t run the whole time non-stop can I?” She said in a smart way.

“Yeah, you’re right,” I said. “Maybe we should rest for a few minutes to get our strength back” I continued.

“That’s a great idea” She said with joy.

We continued to rest in the middle of the track. Soon, we had got enough energy to maybe finish the race with. I wanted to win so badly that I could taste it in my mouth. I got up off the ground.

“Come on, Stanty, let’s finish this race now” I said with eager.

“Ok, let’s agree not to stop again. OK?” She said.

“Ok” I said.

Stanty got up and started to get ready for the race. I moved a little and started to jog in place. Then, we started to run again. I got ahead of Stanty easy, but then she started to get ahead of me again. I tried to stop her, but it was no use. She got ahead of me and started to run faster. I started to think of something, though. If she starts to run fast now, then she would loose all her energy before the end of the race. I laughed evilly and started to run at a pace that wouldn’t use up a lot of energy. Soon, I was at the other side of the race track. Stanty was almost behind me on the next lap. I continued to run at the same pace. I passed the line, so now I’m on lap five now. Just three more laps to go until I win this race. I continued to run at the same pace, but then Stanty passed me. When she did, I could hear her panting loudly. She was using up a lot of energy running as fast as she was. I smiled, as I knew that I had a lot of energy to spare. I passed the corner once more. I started to pick up speed a bit. I didn’t want Stanty to win!

I passed the line again, this time I’m on lap six. Stanty was on lap seven!!! I had to catch up to her. I started to run faster. I passed the corner and went onto the other long stretch. As soon as I got on this long stretch, I could see Stanty lying on the ground. She had lost all of her energy. I ran past her and passed the line once more. I’m now on the last lap. I ran down the long, narrow, side to get to the corner. I passed the corner and started on the next long stretch. I started to run as fast as I could. I could see Stantler moving a bit, meaning that she has regained some of her energy. Soon, I got past her. I was going to win!!! I passed the line, meaning I had won! I yelled in excitement, and Matt ran over towards me and picked me up off the ground. He smiled and laughed. He was really proud of me. He put me in his arms, so I could rest some, and we walked over to where Stantler was lying.

“You did great, Stanty, you can come in your pokeball now,” Matt said.

The red light engulfed Stanty, and she was recalled back into her pokeball. Matt picked me up again.

“I think you are ready for the race, Surrender,” he said.

I nodded my head. I think I’m ready for the race, too. I jumped down from him and started to run towards the lodge again. I was really tired, so I needed to rest some before this race. Matt ran up behind me and picked me up off the ground. We started to run back to the lodge to get some rest. Matt looked at his watch. I heard him mutter about the time being about 2:00. I just sat back in his arms and waited to get to the lodge.

There, I posted the second part of my sucky battle. Hope you like, Gabi. ;x. More on the way sometime...

Lady Vulpix
24th March 2003, 12:53 PM
Alright, Wheat Flakes master! Take 4 stamps! Sorry for the delay. ¢¢¢¢

27th March 2003, 03:22 AM
Hey everybody. Just wanted to post and say im still hanging around. I'm not gonna start writing for the dragon tamers tho until lyk, next scenario but its all good. Gabbi I'm still reading your story just whenever i go to post a reply my net disconnects. But i'm still reading and i really like it so far! And Ryan, if you read this check your email! I'll resend the chapter but you keep checking your email cuz i already sent it and I wanna post the next TFiBe chap!

Anyways hi everybody else :P


Lady Vulpix
27th March 2003, 06:53 AM
Thanks, Tara!
Ok, then. I'll post the next scenario on Monday, to give people more time to finish posting for this one. Still, those who have asked for time extensions can have them.

27th March 2003, 06:43 PM
I apologize for this not being my best work. I’ve had writers block, so bear with me. Hopefully I will be over it by the time the next scenario is up.

(Ayla's POV)

It was amazing what even a little time spent with those you love could accomplish. Mom (Sugar) was back to her normal self again. For the past couple of months, I had seen the change come over her. She hid it well from everyone, but me. I knew her too well. I had been told that I was just like Momma when she was younger. Mom had become more withdrawn than usual, and she didn’t seem to want to do anything at all. I missed Torrey and Dad a lot as well, but the good news was that they had stopped by the Eevee House while we were there. Torrey could always make me laugh, and Dad. Well… He and Mom were two of a kind. The change in her was instantaneous. She was back to her old self. Our little family stuck together until Dad and Torrey had to go home.

(Blazer’s POV)

The Eevee House seemed to go through periods of inactivity and periods where it boomed with popularity. You could always count on seeing at least one of the regulars even when things were going at a magcargo’s pace. Currently, the place was booming with activity. There were new faces as well as familiar ones. Like usual we stayed till after everyone left. However, this time it was with the purpose of training for the Winter Games. Nala had Simba, Ayla, and Talut freeze the pool with their ice beams. Then Flame and Talut would test the ice to see if it would hold their weight. Then Nala would let Simba, Sparky and Salem practice on one half of the pool, though they pretty much goofed off. Kovu and Yana would take turns on the other have. Kovu would practice hitting clay targets with his attacks that Nala and Talut would throw. It was pretty much the only thing he could practice. Then it would be Yana’s turn. She had her work cut out for her. It was amusing to watch. When the training sessions first started, she couldn’t even stand up without falling. She gave it her all and eventually, towards the end of the training sessions she was able to go some distance without falling. Meanwhile, the “Triple S Threat” would start out being serious, then one of them would do something silly on purpose and the whole group would burst out laughing. When the sessions were over, Nala would have us (the fire pokemon on her team and Dodger) thaw the ice and then Ayla and Simba would test it. Once it was the right temperature, we would refill it if needed and then leave.

(Aiyana’s POV)

I was grateful for the late night training sessions. I made progress. If it hadn’t been for those, most likely, I would have made a fool out of myself. As it was I wasn’t the most elegant skater but at least I could move around without falling flat on my snout every second. We had the training sessions every night. I enjoyed them, though the “Triple S Threat” Probably had more fun than Kovu or I did. I could say that I made progress and I was proud of that. With each passing day, the Winter Games drew closer until it was finally time for them. Since I was in the first event, I was fairly nervous, but I knew that as long as I did my best no one would be mad at me. On the morning of the games Nala made a huge breakfast for everyone but would let the participants eat very much. Which was fine with me. I was too nervous to ea, but I did lap up some milk so I wouldn’t be participating on an empty stomach.

(Nala’s POV)

Today, for once things were going smoothly. Everyone was excited about the upcoming games. We were also hoping to see some of our old and good friends. After everyone had eaten, we met in the back yard. I recalled everyone except Flame, Talut, and Dodger. Talut knelt down allowing me to climb onto his back and we took off. The breeze felt nice, and since I had my hair up in a ponytail as usual, it didn’t get messed up either. AS we neared, the location where the event was to be held, Talut began to gradually circle lower and lower until we were safely on the ground in front of the registration booth. I spoke to the lady inside, and she gave me the paperwork to fill out. I headed over to an empty table, which by this time was scarce. Once I filled out who was going to participate in each event all I had left was their species and levels. When I was finished, I turned in the paper work and headed for the track. Flame and Dodger had already taken off after agreeing to meet at the bleachers in time to see the first match.

(Talut’s POV)

Once Yana had been released, I took off to explore on my own. We had agreed to meet at the bleachers. I was enjoying the warm thermals and the calm atmosphere when I saw him. Of course it was hard not to spot Blue most of the time. He hadn’t seen me. I slowly descended behind him and tapped him on his back. Then I used agility to get in front of him when he looked behind himself. “Blue, do you honestly think I’ll still be behind you,” I said as I laughed at his antics. He immediately spun around. The look on his face was priceless. I wish I had a camera. We ended up filling each other in on what had been going on since we last saw each other.

(Aiyana’s POV)

I felt myself being released. Shortly after, so were the rest of my remaining teammates. The majority of them took off to explore, while a few of us stayed with Nala. I took the time to look at the huge oval track. “You’ll have to make ten laps around the track.” I smiled nervously. “I’m not sure how I’ll do, but I’ll do my best.” Nala smiled. “That’s all I ask.” Then our small group went over and rested on the bleachers. Gradually the others returned. I started out trying to pay attention to the races, but eventually my mind drifted as I wondered who my opponent was going to be. Swinub. “Who said that?” I asked puzzled. ”Who said what?” Flame asked coming in and landing beside me. “Someone said ‘swinub’ when I was wondering who my opponent was going to be.” “It wasn’t me,” Sweetie and Salem said at the same time. Nala smiled and scratched be between the ears. “None of us said anything, but I believe you heard something. It might have been your hidden power.” “Maybe…” I said as I let my voice trail off. I didn’t have long to wait until I heard my name over the loud speaker. “Nala98’s Houndour Aiyana please report to the track.” I gulped as I made my way down the bleachers. “You’ll do great,” Kovu told me as I passed him. I nodded, as a determined look appeared on my face. Sure enough, there was a swinub waiting for me. “Are you my opponent?” I asked. He eyed me warily. “Yes, I am. You had better not cheat, of course, I’m just wasting my breath.” The fur on my back bristled. “What exactly do you mean by that?” He rolled his eyes and looked at me like I was the dubest thing he had ever seen. “Everyone knows that dark types can not be trusted.” I sighed. “I suppose if everyone jumped off a cliff, you would too.” I never got a statement in response to tat because a voice came over the loudspeaker. “ON YOUR MARK! GET SET! GO!”

Aiyana L.7 Houndour VS. L.10 Swinub

As soon as we heard the word go, we both took off. In terms of speed, I was slightly faster. However, when it came to experience and ease on the ice, I was sorely lacking. The skates made my feet feel heavy, but I focused on the track ahead. I had passed the swinub a while back. I didn’t think anything of it at the time. At least, until I was hit from behind with a tackle that sent me sliding into the wall halfway through my first lap. I climbed to my paws. I had to distract him but how? I decided to try a bluff. Everyone that knew me knew me knew that I wasn’t fierce, so I hope that the swinub didn’t know anyone that new me. I did my best to catch up. I hope this works, I thought as i prepared myself to use an attack I had never used before. I waited until I was right behind the swinub before I took a deep breath and let loose and intimidating roar. It even startled me, and I was the one that made the nosie. I was well into my second lap before I saw him again. I slowed down slightly so that I could keep an eye on him. I wasn’t graceful, but at least I was able to remain standing and go around the track. The training sessions at the Eevee House had really paid off. I knew that I didn’t have many attacks that would help me out on the ice. For all practical purposes I only had one attack that I could use, and I wanted to keep that a secret for now. For the next few laps the Swinub didn’t try anything. He had caught up with me at the beginning of the fourth lap and the look in his eyes was plain that he wasn’t out of tricks just yet. Sure enough, within seconds I was buried under a pile of snow. I sighed, he seemed to have his courage back. I struggled to get out of the snow and moving again. I hoped that I could continue with the intimidation bluff a little longer. When I finally caught up with him on the fifth lap, I stared at him trying to use leer. It didn’t work exactly how I had planned as the swinub started laughing. Well, I maybe could sound fierce, but looking fierce in order to use leer just didn’t work out. X_X I had to face it I wasn’t good at being scary. We were dead even for the remaining laps. On the last leg of the race, I didn’t want to pull ahead in case he tried something else. I was right to be wary of him as we advanced, he grinned. Then he darted in and bit my leg. I slammed into the pile of snow that had covered me earlier and skidded into the wall. I shook my head, before trying to get to my feet. I heard the crowd booing the swinub. I tested my leg. It hurt but I could bear weight on it, so I took off. As soon as I saw the swinub, I focused on my hidden power. I had thought it would lift him up like the tootsie roll bank. Wrong. As the pink glow enveloped him, he gradually slowed to a stop though he kept on skating. I heard laughter, and it was hard to refrain from laughing myself. He looked so funny. I maintained my concentration until I caught up with him then I let him go. I skated faster as I saw the finish line. Soon, I pulled ahead. Suddenly, I had the urge to dodge to the left. I did and narrowly missed an ice beam. I kept skating, but I made a mental not to ask Sweetie about her psychic power. I needed to know as much as I could in order to get the most use out of my hidden power. Cheers from the crowd brought me back to reality. Somehow, I managed to stay on course and cross the finish line. The swinub crossed the finish line muttering something about dirty darks. I shrugged. It was his problem. I wouldn’t let that get me down. Just then, a Nurse Joy arrived to look at and bandage my leg. I could feel it throbbing slightly, but I wouldn’t let hat bother me.

I grew to L.8!

Last Exile
29th March 2003, 07:05 PM
Tara, I sent a reply, saying yes! :confused: On Sunday last week! I don't know why you didn't get it.

Anyway, post away! And sent me an email! I wanna talk Meteora with you if we can. ;)

Lady Vulpix
29th March 2003, 08:20 PM
That was nice, Amy! Sorry I didn't reply earlier. I had many distractions today, my thesis being the biggest. The day went off in a gust!

Lady Vulpix
31st March 2003, 06:35 PM
DarkPrince the Dark Knight gets 20 stamps for this unusual scenario. (I made some contributions to it). ¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢

We have been invited to a special event that takes place on the Easter Islands. Many of you may find this peculiar, but it could be a nice change of scenery for those looking for fun, or even for some training. The game will be held on an open area, and all those who managed to fulfill their quests will be rewarded with a tasty treat. Here's what the sign at the registration boot says.

"Hello, and welcome to the Easter Islands. In this exciting event, you are on a quest to earn Easter eggs, a very popular tradition held each and every Easter. However, in order to receive one of these delicious treats, you must defeat one of the many trainers here to find one (it will always be a random colour, and its contents are always random (e.g. for example the egg could be a chocolate flavoured egg with or without a creamy filling inside). The trainers here will always be holding one egg, but getting it (and learning what type of egg it is) will be difficult, as you will have to battle with any of the following Pokemon:

Level 10 and Below

Pichu L5 +1
Igglybuff L10 +2

Level 11-20

Cleffa L15 +1
Togepi L20 +2

Level 21-30

Marill L25 +1
Jigglypuff L30 +2

Level 31-40

Pikachu L35 +1
Snubbull L40 +2

Level 41-50

Clefairy L45 +1
Eevee L50 +2

Level 51-60

Exeggcute L55 +1
Lickitung L60 +2

Level 61-70

Togetic L65 +1
Azumarill L70 +2

Level 71-80

Wigglytuff L75 +1
Chansey L80 +2

Level 81-90

Clefable L85 +1
Raichu L90 +2

Level 90-100

Exeggutor L95 +1
Blissey L100 +2"

Knight of Time
1st April 2003, 01:48 PM
My trip to the Easter Islands

[My POV]

It was not an ordinary day today. Waking up from a long nap at my house, I could see that the table was decorated with a single basket filled to the top with Easter grass, and a few other treats, but upon looking through the entire basket, I gasped. No Easter eggs in sight! Feeling puzzled about why I did not get any Easter eggs, I decided to leave the house, and upon walking a few miles, I noticed a portal. Even though I had travelled through a portal before, during my trip to the Porygon Valley, I noticed something rather unusual about this new portal.

Upon staring at it for about a minute or two, I finally understood what was going on. Seeing virtually every colour of the rainbow, I decided to step inside. Even though I felt a little dizzy from the swirling colours going into my eyes while I was being transported, within a few minutes my 'ride' finally stopped, and I found myself in a strange land, filled with a few statues here and there.

Trying to figure out where I had ended up, I walked around for a few minutes before finally finding a sign, that read "Welcome to the Easter Islands". Starting to like this place a lot, I walked around some more, looking for someone who would also be here, until I came across a girl a few years younger than me, about 16 years of age.

"Hi, my name is Dawn, what's your's?" Introducing myself to Dawn, I told her that my name was Kyle. "Oh, you seem to be new around here. Is this your first visit to the Easter Island?" Upon hearing Dawn's question, I nodded. Telling her that I wanted to make this my only visit, I asked Dawn curiously why I ended up with no Easter eggs before coming here. "Oh, I'm sorry, but we can't allow you to get an Easter egg or two without winning a Pokemon battle here. Are you up for the challenge, Kyle?"

Nodding, I declared I was ready for Dawn's challenge. "Okay, how about two Pokemon each. What do you say?" Upon hearing the type of challenge Dawn wanted, I quickly agreed, but also told her that I was up for an additional challenge, to see if only one Pokemon could win both battles. "Two against one? Are you sure you will not need a second Pokemon, Kyle? You seem to be taking this challenge a bit too seriously." Nodding once again, I smiled as I took out a black and orange Pokeball. Enlarging it, I opened it up to reveal my adopted male Houndour, Chaos, who was currently wearing a Pokemon Earring to help him. "You made a good choice to buy that earring for your Houndour, but are you sure it can help him beat me?" Declaring to Dawn that I was very sure this 50% special attack boost would come in handy, I nodded once more. "Okay, for my first Pokemon, I call upon my first of two Igglybuff. This one is named Bouncy. I'd be real careful around him if I were you. BTW, do you want to attack first Kyle, or can I?" Telling Dawn that I felt like attacking second, I declared to her that I would not be afraid to battle a cute Pokemon like an Igglybuff, and I shook hands with Dawn. Taking my place, Dawn and I declared ourselves ready to battle.

Chaos the Houndour (M, L5) vs Bouncy the Igglybuff (M, L10)

[My POV]

Upon seeing Bouncy being let out of his Pokeball by Dawn, I turned to Chaos. Asking him if he was ready, he nodded. Just then, I heard what Dawn had planned for me and Chaos. "Okay Bouncy, I have an idea. Even though you and Chaos are the same gender, there is one thing that you have which he does not. The power to charm your opponent, so I want you to use a Charm attack on him!" As soon as I saw Bouncy look cute towards Chaos, I shuddered. With Chaos's attack power cut in half, and Dawn simultaneously giggling, I could tell that Chaos didn't look too happy. "Okay Chaos, time for a weather change. It may be cloudy right now, but this might just help you should you beat Bouncy, so use a Sunny Day!" Upon seeing Chaos summon the sun, I whistled in relief.

"Hah, you may have made a good decision to have Chaos call upon the sun, but Bouncy can take advantage of it. Now, Bouncy, blast Chaos with a Solarbeam attack!" As soon as I saw Bouncy create and fire the powerful bright green beam of sunlight, I watched as Chaos was knocked aside. Knowing that getting Chaos to use Sunny Day might have been a mistake, I shook it off, realizing the power it had to help Chaos in this battle. "Okay Chaos, just because Bouncy is able to use Solarbeam without needing to charge it doesn't mean he will win this easily, so use an Ember attack on him." Upon seeing Chaos spit out a small, orangish yellow flame at Bouncy, I felt better, knowing that its power was upped quite a bit, thanks to the combination of the earring on Chaos' ear as well as Chaos' ability to call upon the sun.

"Oh great, I should have known you would take advantage of Chaos's power. Just because he is five levels lower than you doesn't mean he will be able to edge you in this battle. Now, give Chaos something he won't expect, and give him a Present." Upon hearing that Bouncy had a present for Chaos, I shuddered in fear for a few moments. Knowing that there would only be a one in four chance of the present healing Chaos, I watched as he opened the box. BOOM! BOOM! BOOM! After seeing three explosions come out of the box, I slapped myself in the face. Knowing that Chaos would surely faint from one more attack, including a very weak one, I had just about enough. "Okay Chaos. You might be down, but you are far from out. Now, call upon the moon's power, and use a Moonlight!" Upon seeing the moon come in within a few seconds, I started to feel delighted after a beam from the nightly star washed over Chaos, completely healing his wounds.

"Well, you sure got lucky Kyle, but this is not over yet. Bouncy, get Chaos with a Headbutt!" Upon seeing Bouncy lowering his head to ram headfirst into Chaos, I pondered for a few seconds, wondering if Bouncy might end up bouncing off of Chaos because of his rubbery body. "I don't think he will, Kyle, but we'll see." Dawn answered to me. Within a second or two, I could see Chaos being headbutted pretty hard. Even though this made Chaos a bit angry, I still had a few tricks up my sleeve. "Okay Chaos, that Headbutt attack of Bouncy's may be strong, but it is not going to hinder you that much. Now, give Bouncy another Ember attack!" As soon as I saw Chaos spit out another orangish yellow ball of fire at Bouncy, I suddenly noticed that Bouncy was burned by the flame.

"Arrgh, you got lucky to have Bouncy get burned. It's not too often a burn comes around, but I am still not going to hold back. Bouncy, I want you to now use a Pound attack!" As soon as I saw Bouncy coming to drop his unburnt leg onto Chaos' body, I knew that this would signal Bouncy's end, since he was starting to look pretty weak. "Okay Chaos, just one more Ember should do the trick for Bouncy." Upon seeing Chaos retaliate with a third ball of fire at Bouncy, I knew that this battle was halfway done, and I watched in surprise as Bouncy tried to get up again, but to no avail.

Chaos grew to L7 and learned Roar!

"Bouncy! Oh no, you, you defeated him! I will avenge you for this. Let's go, Buffy!"

Seeing a second Igglybuff come out, I asked Dawn if Buffy was a female Igglybuff. "Yes, Buffy is a she. Like Bouncy, I wouldn't underestimate her if I were you. BTW, since I attacked first last time, you want to go first this time, Kyle?"

Hearing Dawn's proposal to attack second, I nodded, knowing it would be fair for her to attack second this time.

Chaos the Houndour (M, L7) vs Buffy the Igglybuff (F, L10)

[My POV]

Upon seeing Buffy, I was in shock. Knowing that she would be possibly harder to defeat than Bouncy was, I turned to Chaos. "Chaos, I have a funny feeling that Buffy may be quite a bit harder, so we have to be tougher this time. Start things off with Ember!" As soon as I saw the fireball hit Buffy, I suddenly noticed something about her. Though Chaos' attacks were stronger, I could see that Buffy was also just as tough, as I heard Dawn's first command. "Okay Buffy, Chaos thinks you will be easier to beat, since his Ember attacks are stronger. But, there is one thing you can do that might just stop him. Use an Attract on him!"

As soon as I saw Chaos begin to look at Buffy's irresistibly pretty face, I shuddered. With Chaos now temporarily in love with her, and the sun's rays starting to disappear, this could get really bad for him, unless luck was to be on his side later on. Starting to get a little worried, I turned to Chaos again. "Okay Chaos, this looks bad, but I know you will overcome this attraction. Now, get back at Buffy with another Ember!" Upon seeing Chaos succesfully spit out another small flame at Buffy, I cheered for Chaos, the Houndour knowing that I was starting to become very proud of him.

"Man, I don't know how your Houndour could get this lucky. However, I am not about to fall just yet. Now Buffy, get Chaos with your best Rollout attack!" As soon as I saw Buffy curl up into a tight ball and roll smack into Chaos, my smile towards Chaos began to fade, until I suddenly had an idea. "Okay Chaos, it may appear that Buffy is going to keep on using Rollout until she defeats you, but I have an idea. Since her body is all soft and rubbery, you can take advantage of this when she gets close to you again, by using an Ember!" Upon seeing Buffy roll within striking distance of Chaos, I watched as he spat another fireball on the ground near her. "Buffy, look out! That Ember attack is in such a clever place, so you have to roll around it!" Dawn warned.

However, both she and I could see it was too late, as Chaos' timing was perfect on the fireball attack, and I watched as Buffy uncurled and fell down. "Well, it looks like you won this battle Kyle. I didn't expect your Houndour would be able to beat both Bouncy and Buffy without the help of another of your Pokemon. As I promised, here is my Easter egg. You've earned it, congrats."

Upon seeing Dawn recall Buffy and hand me her Easter egg, I scratched my head. Not knowing what flavour was inside, I thanked Dawn for the battle, and went back through the portal, removing the wrapper on my egg to see what flavour I got...

Chaos grew to L9!

Aipom Of Doom
1st April 2003, 02:49 PM
Just curious, but is this scenerio supposed to be on a made-up place called Easter Island, or the real Easter Island place off the coast of Chile with those big statues? That would be quite strange. =/

Knight of Time
1st April 2003, 05:28 PM
Originally posted by Aipom Of Doom
Just curious, but is this scenerio supposed to be on a made-up place called Easter Island, or the real Easter Island place off the coast of Chile with those big statues? That would be quite strange. =/

Danny: No, this is the real Easter Island, but with a few twists here and there.

Reptilius Pyrus
1st April 2003, 10:38 PM
Wow… I haven’t been in PCG for quite a while. But this scenario looked so tempting, I couldn’t resist! Here goes…

<Cora’s POV>

I awoke to the sight of two yellow eyes staring back at me. Shouting in surprise, I attempted to roll out of bed, but my leg caught in the sheet and I thudded clumsily to the floor. At once there was a burst of laughter. I blinked fuzzily, trying to apprehend what had happened. Akuba II was coiled by her tail to the bedpost. Apparently, it had been she who had startled me. I heard giggles coming from the other end of the bed. Yanking the sheet off my foot, I crawled toward them. Poking my head around, I saw Xuki, Adhish and Flarinea doubled up in hysterics.

“What—“ I began bewilderedly.

“APRIL FOOL’S!” they chorused, and went off into fresh fits of mirth.

I shook my head in disbelief. “You weirdoes.”

Standing and stretching, I took the Ekans off the bed. She slithered up my arm and twined around my shoulders contentedly. Walking into the kitchen, I noticed a basket on the table. It was filled with assorted chocolate treats and Easter grass. But…. It wasn’t Easter yet! I stared suspiciously at Xuki, who had followed me.

“Is this another joke?” I asked. “Are these filled with castor oil or something?”

He shook his ursine face. “No… Honest!” he added, as I narrowed my eyes in disbelief. “Ask Pearl if you want. You know she wouldn’t lie.”

I decided to do just that. Striding into the room where all my Pokemon slept, I approached the Shuckle’s shell and tapped on it lightly. After a few seconds, Pearl’s head poked out from the hole in the hard surface. “Yes?”

“Do you know who put the Easter basket on the table?”

She thought for a second. “Hmm… Well, Xuki and the others were planning on scaring you when you woke up… and frosting in the toothpaste… but I didn’t hear them planning to do anything with Easter candy.”

Thanking her for the heads-up, I walked into the bathroom, still puzzled about the basket. Opening the toothpaste, I sniffed it. It was indeed frosting. I decided to play a trick of my own. I wet my toothbrush, and began brushing my teeth without using any toothpaste. As I had suspected, Xuki poked his head in.

“Notice anything different?” he asked innocently. Hiding the tube behind my back, I shook my head and continued brushing. His face fell. “Are you sure?”

Finally I spat in the sink. “Well, now that you mention it… it does seem a bit…”

He was eager. “Yes? Yes?”

I took the tube out from behind me and squeezed. “Nice try! April Fool’s!” The frosting/toothpaste squirted all over his tan fur.

“Hey! How—How’d you know?!” he spluttered.

I smiled. “Pearl told me. Thanks for the suggestion to ask her, by the way.” Grumbling, he pushed past me to wash in the sink.

I grinned, satisfied. Returning to my room, I pulled on a T-shirt with “baka^ni” on it (Megatokyo!!!! ^_^) and shorts. I tossed my robe on the bed, then realized that the lump in it was Akuba and untangled her from the cloth. “Sorry, about that, Ku.”

“You should be,” she hissed, annoyed.

“Well, someone’s in a bad mood today. Why don’t you get some sun?” I took her to the window and opened it. Outside was a shimmering portal! I had seen one of these before, when it was a transport to Porygon Valley, but I had been a little uncertain about it and, since the valley had been fairly close, had decided to walk instead. Something about this portal made me think that it was considerably farther away this time, though. Heading towards the front door, I called, “Pearl? Do you want to go out?”

She slowly crawled out of the room. “Um… ok… If you think I would last…”

“Sure you would! Now let’s go.” I sent her into a Pokeball and, on a whim, picked up the Easter basket. As I started to head out the front door, Xuki came running.

“Hey! What about me?” he whined.

I shrugged. “Sure, whatever. Anyone else want to come?”

As I suspected, all my Pokemon approached. I recalled Xuki, Flarinea, Adhish, Aquaria, Zaporill, and Doriana, but left Akuba out. Locking the front door behind me, I took a deep breath, shut my eyes—and stepped through the portal.

Immediately, I felt a rush of dizzying speed. Daring to open one eye, I saw a rush of bright, swirling hues of every imaginable color. Shutting them tight again, I hoped fervently that I wouldn’t get sick. Luckily, before I was nauseous, I felt my feet land on solid ground. My knees buckled, but I managed to stay standing as I took in my surroundings…

To be continued….(Gotta go to bed)

Lady Vulpix
2nd April 2003, 01:05 PM
Kyle, I made my comments to you on AIM. Take your 7 stamps! ¢¢¢¢¢¢¢

Welcome back, Reptilius Pyrus! I'll read your story soon.

2nd April 2003, 05:53 PM
Well, here is the last two parts. I think my writers block is over for now.

(Salem's POV)

Yana’s opponent in the race kept attacking her. She had tried to intimidate him, and was successful at first. However, she wasn’t able to maintain the bluff for as long as she needed to. That roar of hers scared me. I’m not afraid to admit it. The swinub was playing nasty. He even bit Yana’s leg, but she didn’t let that slow her down. I had to laugh as it looked like the swinub was skating in place, surrounded by a pink glow. I couldn’t resist. “What happened, did you hit an invisible wall?” I shouted at the swinub while laughing. The others cracked up as well. “Way to go Yana!” When she crossed the finish line, the entire crowd cheered (of course we did as well). After Nurse Joy had bandaged her leg up, she joined us. The white bandage stood out against her ebony coat. I gave her a high paw. “Nice work with the hidden power.” She nodded absentmindedly. “Nala, could we get something to eat now please? I’m hungry.” Amy smiled. “Of course.”With that, all of us went off to find a food vendor. Almost everyone was able to eat his or her fill. I was one of the few that weren’t allowed to overload their stomach. Nala looked at her watch. “We should be getting back.” Everyone nodded, and about that time a voice came over the loud speaker announcing that it was time for the hockey games to begin.

(Sugar’s POV)

We all headed back to the track. I was frustrated, and I could shock someone. I wouldn’t do it, not on purpose anyway, but I felt like it. Once again, my battle was waiting on a ref. It was the same thing with Blazer’s battle. He didn’t seem to be bothered by it. I guess it was in my blood to get restless easy. I’ve been that way for as long as I can remember. The next thing I knew, I had collided into Yana’s backside. “Oops. Sorry about that.””Nothing to worry about,”I then saw why everyone has stopped. It seemed that the rink had been completely melted. When the call went out for pokemon with ice moves to help, some of my teammates volunteered. They included Simba, Ayla, and Talut. When they returned later, they were talking excitedly. I managed to make out that they had seen some of Gabi’s team. Sure enough, when the hockey games resumed, her team was one of the next up. The battle was interesting to watch, but when the feraligatr used surf against Amber I almost ran down to join Tsunami in the rink. However, Amy had a hold of my collar, preventing me from running anywhere. I think she had somehow anticipated that, and effectively kept me from running off. I was so angry I let a thundershock fly. It hit Nala, and she let go of my collar. I didn’t run off since by then I had calmed down slightly, and I settled back to watch. When they had won, I cheered at the top of my lungs along with the others. Not too long after, it was time for the Triple S Threat to show their stuff. “Good luck guys.” They nodded as they made their way to the rink.

Simba L.38 Vaporeon, Salem L.38 Espeon, and Sparky L.38 Raichu
The Triple S Threat
L.40 Lapras, L.40 Vaporeon, and L.40 Poliwrath
The Swim Team

(Simba’s POV)

It was a last minute decision as to who would be the goalie. Salem declined knowing that he wasn’t as observant as a goalie ought to be. So that left Sparky and me. I volunteered to be the goalie. So, I walked over and took my place in front of the net. Salem and Sparky walked to the center of the rink. At that moment, our opponents arrived. Their goalie was a lapras. The vaporeon and poliwrath walked forward to where Salem and Sparky were. They nodded and shook paws before waiting for the ref to blow the whistle and drop the puck. The poliwrath and Sparky got sticks, but Salem and the vaporeon would have to rely on their attacks to propel the puck.

The ref blew the whistle and dropped the puck. After that, things happened quickly. The poliwrath was able to get control of the puck first. Together the two of them raced toward our side with Salem and Sparky on their heels. I took a deep breath as they slowed down close to the goal. At the moment the poliwrath went to hit the puck into the net, I used a water gun to send it flying backwards. Sparky took possession of the puck and was off before the others even had a chance to realize what had happened. I smirked as I figured that he must have used agility. The lapras tried to send the puck back the other way in much the same manner as I had earlier, but Spark was much faster than she had anticipated.



I smiled. Suddenly a thick mist began covering the arena. I could barely see, and I had a feeling that the others couldn’t very well. I felt a breeze rush past my head. I groaned as the bell sounded signaling that the opponents had scored.


The mist around the arena soon began to clear. It was then that I noticed the four mirrors along the topsides of the arena. Salem had gotten possession of the puck. He was making his way toward the opponent’s goal propelling the puck with his psychic powers. However, the vaporeon snatched the puck away by using a tail whip to send it to the poliwrath. Salem turned tail and chased after them along with Sparky. The vaporeon turned and fired a volley of heat seeking star shaped missiles at my teammates, before catching back up with his poliwrath buddy. I was about to use another water gun, but the opposing vaporeon had other plans. He had been expecting this and used his hidden power as soon as the water left my mouth. I couldn’t help but scream at the pain. “AAAARRGH!” I cried as the electricity coursed through my body. I fell to the ground. “DAD!” I heard Salem yell over the sound of the buzzer. I struggled to get up and climb back onto my paws.


“That was uncalled for,” I said but no one was around to hear. Salem and Sparky had control of the puck again, and this time Salem sent the puck flying into the goal with a tail whip. The lapras thought that he was going to send it to Sparky. She thought wrong.


(Sparky’s POV)

This was getting ridiculous. We were just trying to play the game and our opponents were trying to win at all costs. I didn’t mind the attacks on us at first because they weren’t aimed at or weaknesses, or were used strategically. The attack on Simba was a different story. To make things worse, it was the vaporeon that had used the hidden power as well. The vaporeon had to know what pain the attack could inflict on a fellow water pokemon. Well, just in case it didn’t it was about to get a crash course. The vaporeon was nearing me as I approached their goal. I deliberately slowed down and let the vaporeon get close. Then, my electrical pouches began to spark, as I launched three electrical rings at the vaporeon. The thunder wave efficiently paralyzed it. After I had I smirked and used the opportunity to score. The lapras had been distracted by her teammate’s predicament. Then passing the vaporeon I set a tiny thundershock its way. I didn’t even bother powering it up full strength because of the boost the earring gave me.


The poliwrath began skating toward Salem and the goal. Salem was hot on his heels. Using quick attack to get out in front, Salem shot the puck toward me with a psybeam. I reacted instantly racing towards the goal with the puck. The lapras looked like she was going to block any shot that I made. I just shrugged and used a thunderbolt to send the puck flying. I didn’t have any troubles scoring that way.


I already had a plan forming. I had noticed the mirrors. The opponents had called a time out to regroup. I used that opportunity to tell Simba and Salem my plan. They nodded and we were set. We still had to wait for the others to finish their time out session though.

Things didn’t quite go exactly how I would have liked them too. The vaporeon had managed to overcome his paralysis long enough to use an ice beam freezing me in place. At least I could still move my upper body and fire off electricity. However, there was no way that I could make a goal being frozen in place. By now, Salem had possession of the puck again. “NOW!” I shouted. Salem sprang into action. His red gem began to glow black, as the glow enveloped his whole body. The glow seemed to suck out all of the light from the arena thus immersing the arena in pitch dark. I waited to the count of three thus ensuring that my teammates would have their eyes closes. Then, I fired a thunderbolt to the closest mirror. It reflected the bolt to the next until the thunderbolt and the arena had lighted all the mirrors. The effect was immediate. The arena was once more lit. Our opponents stood there blinking, temporarily blinded. “Go,” I said and once more Salem reacted. He was able to score the winning goal.


The Triple S Threat Won!

Simba grew to L.39!
Salem grew to L.39!
I grew to L.39

Nala came down and congratulated us. She recalled Simba. Then after Salem had broken the ice holding me in place with his iron tail, she also recalled us.

(Nala’s POV)

After the match was over, I took all three of them to the Pokecenter. By the time we had returned, the third event had started. Talut and the others had saved us seats. No sooner than I had sat down, than the loudspeaker boomed requesting Kovu to go to the starting line. I wished him luck. He nodded before leaving.

(Kovu’s POV)
As I neared the starting line, I wondered who and what my opponent could be. As I neared the starting line I noticed a long waterway extending much further than the actual course. There was a kingdra waiting at the beginning end of the waterway. I nodded, before taking my place at the starting line. The shout went out. “ON YOUR MARK!” I tensed up. “GET SET!” I was ready. “GO!” I took off running. I was ahead, but I had a feeling that unless I did something quick it wouldn’t be that way for long. Sure enough I saw him out of the corner of my eye. I used a quick attack to gain some ground. It worked somewhat, so I used another. I smiled to myself as it worked. I should have been paying more attention to where I was going. I had to skid to a stop so I wouldn’t run into the freezing water. I looked back to see that the kingdra was approaching fast. I sighed, jumping in. The change in temperature was drastic. “Yowzers! That’s cold!” Don’t ask where that came from I’ve never heard that word before. At that precise moment, the kingdra caught up with me. I was making progress though it was slow. Slow and steady wins the race I told myself. The kingdra smirked. I had a plan. I couldn’t guarantee that it would work but I could at least try. I tuned my head so that the kingdra could see the scar, and gave him a mean look. Then I let out an ear splitting screech. It worked! It had caused the kingdra to slow down slightly. I knew the effects wouldn’t last long and I was tiring out. The cold wasn’t helping me any. Slowly, but surely, I was making progress. The kingdra had by now caught up, and was pulling ahead. At last I had reached the bank. The kingdra in the meantime had already started shooting his targets. I shook as much of the excess water off that I could. At that moment, my first target appeared. A small purplish black ball of ghostly mater formed in the air in front of me, before slamming into the target. One by one the other targets appeared and I dispatched them with shadow balls in much the same as I did on the first. All I had left was the battle. I was jarred out of my thoughts by a water gun to the face. The battle, it seemed, had begun.

Kovu L.52 Umbreon VS. L.50 Kingdra

I raced in and hit the kingdra with a quick attack. He retaliated with a headbutt. I winced but prepared a toxic sludge, which I spat all over him. He responded with his hidden power, which luckily for me, was fire. It stung, don’t get me wrong, but it had a benefit that the kingdra hadn’t counted on. It had dried me off and warmed me up somewhat. My eyes began to glow white as I channeled my energy into a confuse ray. The kingdra took the opportunity to hit me with another headbutt. I launched the ray immediately before he could look away. He retaliated with a volley of heat seeking star shaped missiles. I responded with a swift of my own. I slowly disappeared as the kingdra looked around. He then used a water gun on himself. His confusion had gotten the better of him. I used the opportunity to slam into him from behind returning to visibility. By now, the kingdra was sweating, a sure sign that the toxins were doing their job. I needed to end this fast. The ring on my forehead began to glow and an orb of pulsating electrical energy formed in the air in front of me. Once it had completely formed, I released my hold on the zap cannon and let it fly towards the kingdra. He had just managed to shke off his confusion, when he noticed the zap cannon heading his way. By then, it was too late. The attack hit, and he was out like a light.

I grew to L.53!

I saw the finish line just ahead. I gathered my last reserves of energy and walked towards it. Eventually, I crossed it. Amy and the others were there waiting for me. I walked over to them and was given a warm welcome.

3rd April 2003, 04:33 PM
LV, I think I'm in trouble... In the Winter Games scenario, the hockey game, are we allowed to have team members of different levels or must they all be in the same level range? I had originally planned to have Christian, BlueShadow, and Jesse on the hockey team. Christian and Blue are about the same level, but Jesse is way below. I figured I could pick two Pokemon from Christian and BlueShadow's level range and one from Jesse's level range. Must I remake my team in order for them to be all the same level range or can I improvise as explaied above? They all gain the same amount of levels anyways. I've already pretty much written out my intro and I'll have to start all over if I have to change the hockey team. I completely understand and will happily re-write it, but I'd be even more happy to keep it the same, lol. Thanks!

3rd April 2003, 10:44 PM
Reptilius Pyrus take four stamps for th nice story.

Lady Vulpix
4th April 2003, 09:05 AM
Ouch! I'm sorry, M_K, they need to be in the same level range. They don't have to be all the same level, though.

I enjoyed your story, Amy, and it was good to know you read mine. :)

4th April 2003, 07:38 PM
Hmm, I'll post the battles later... Here's just an introduction, for now.


Okay, if I said that I had any normal experiences ever since I became a Dragon Tamer, I would be a filthy liar. I had just found this extraordinary Eevee at the Pokézoo Adoption Center – he called himself Lune – whom everyone else seemed to like, too. He wasn’t hyper and super friendly like Switchblade when he was younger; or possess Evenstar's charming grace that seemed to attract everyone's affection; he was more like Élan, but not quite so uncontrollable when he became angry. No, Lune was much calmer, but he kept mostly to himself, for he did not have much that he wanted to say often. He was – how would you say it – cool; and the words he spoke flowed smoothly like a gentle river; his voice was pleasant to hear. He got along with everyone well enough. He was really a remarkable character. But something about him made me feel uncomfortable, some flickering shadow of faint doubt that made me dreamingly wonder...

Nimrodel, Élan, Evenstar, and Lune were resting in their poké balls while Switchblade and I did a little exploring. We had just cleared a small, grassy hill filled with fragrant spring flowers when it happened. Suddenly, rapidly, and inexplicably.

We were seized and thrown about by winds of gigantic proportions, hardly able to catch our breaths throughout the tumult. But the sensation only lasted briefly, vanishing almost as soon as it spontaneously came. Shredded flower petals floated slowly down to the floor.

"Whoa, Fearow!" said a boy who looked about twelve years of age. He grinned sheepishly at me. "Hi, sorry, my Fearow and I didn't mean to do that," he told me. "It's just that Lance has just recently evolved, and we both don't know how to control his power yet."

"That's... quite alright," I replied, somewhat breathlessly, brushing off the fine golden pollen that had accumulated on my shirt. Sweet though it might smell, sticky pollen was stubborn if not removed quickly; it would cling onto cloth and refuse to budge. I liked that shirt. It was sky blue and sleeveless, incidentally, and in it was woven a picture of a Dragonair, silvery beast of graceful majesty. I admired the pokémon with almost an obsessive passion; deep in my heart was the ever-burning desire to, someday, be privileged enough to train one.

"Ahem. Anyway," the boy said, clearing his throat, "My name is Charlie. You're Karin, right? I was supposed to deliver you this."

I received the brightly-colored envelope with curiosity. "What's this?" I whispered to myself, as my excited hands, trembling, carefully opened the seal and picked out the letter inside.

"You have received an invitation to a special event that will take place in the Easter Islands, as will all the other Dragon Tamers," I read. "The exact details will be provided once you arrive, but be assured that you will take particular delight in this happy celebration. Please do not refuse the invitation; you will surely be rewarded for your interest." Turning to Charlie, I asked, "Great, but I have no idea how I'll get there. Do you?"

As if in response to my question, I felt myself whisked rapidly from the ground, with Switchblade beside me, who uttered a surprised mechanical cry. Charlie, below, smiled, probably having seen this strange occurrence several times before, and waved goodbye. I wondered how amusing the reactions of other Dragon Tamers were.

The journey was a blur. I remembered sensations being dulled, for sight was limited to the whizzing by of mixed, indistinguishable colors, and hearing to the whoosh of the air by my ears. But my emotions, in contrast, were sharpened: I suddenly felt elated beyond my wildest joy: thrilled, somewhat frightened, and jubilant all at the same time.

Then, abruptly, the strange rushing feeling came to a halt, and all senses rushed back to me. I saw Switchblade beside me, also out of breath by this bewildering experience. All around was meadow upon meadow of astonishingly beautiful spring flowers, and the cheerful music of the birds and sweet smell of the growing fields around me excited my senses with utter joy.

Switchblade was the first to notice the unusual stone monuments that protruded from the ground. The fact that they were decorated gaily with ribbons of all colors, and the grass about them was strewn with glittering ornaments, did not reduce the inspired awe that I felt when I gazed upon them; and I shrank back a little, from terror. What a strange day! It started off with the discovery of Lune at the Pokézoo Adoption Center, then with carefree exploring, and Charlie and his inexperienced Fearow; and now here we were, staring face to face into the cold, unblinking eyes of stone giants, brought to this island by a mysterious wind.

"Do you have any idea what's going on, Switchblade?" I asked.

Absolutely no clue. Maybe we can ask that girl over there? Switchblade gestured at a girl some ways ahead, who looked oddly familiar...

When we got there, I realized why. "Kristyn...?"

"Hey, yeah. Remember when Evenstar and Switchblade battled my Aipom and Meowth?" she asked. Without awaiting an answer, she continued. "Well, anyway, the weirdest thing happened to me. I don't even remember how I got here. I just know that I did, somehow. One moment I was watering my garden, and the next, I was here." Kristyn was in good spirits, and scarcely stopped to breathe. I didn't realize that she was this talkative the last time I saw her. "Oh, I've figured out a few things, though." She brought out a small package wrapped delicately in tin foil, showed it to me for a brief instant, then put it back in her purse. "There are trainers here who are handing out candy eggs. You have to beat a trainer to get one, though, which I've just done a little while ago. My Persian is still taking a rest."

I blinked, not fully understanding. "That's weird... Why are they handing out candy eggs? Any idea?"

"No, not really," she answered. "I think it's some sort of custom that they have."

"Um... okay." I didn't ask any further questions. I still wanted to know who these trainers were, where they came from, why we were brought to Easter Island, what those giant statues were for, and how exactly we got here, but I decided to leave it at that.

"By the way, I've just gotten a really cute new pokémon. Care to battle her?" Kristyn asked. She threw the pokéball, and in a revealing flash of white light, the tiny Igglybuff appeared and began to bounce about happily.

"Neat, an Igglybuff. Perfect for a little someone who's been confining himself to his pokéball for some time. Go, Él-"

At that moment, Lune burst forth from his own pokéball and stepped calmly into the battlefield.

Élan does not want to battle now. Let me handle this, he said.

"Lune? Are you sure? That Igglybuff looks like she's received a little more training than you have..."

Battle does not scare me. Don't worry. I'll be fine.

"All right, then," I said, banishing the last traces of hesitation from my tone because of the confidence the Eevee's words put into me, "Go for it, Lune!"

9th April 2003, 02:33 PM
I'm using a Torkoal I adopted from Pokezoo Adoption Place. She is level 5 at the moment, and knows Eruption, Ember, and Smog.

http://www.pokemasters.net/images/games/ruby_sapphire/rs105.png Lv. 5 (Ember, Smog, Eruption)

Walking around the neighborhood, I smiled. Sitting in my pocket was my very own pokeball. All mine! All mine! I even had adopted two pokemon! Lovely. Even better, they were both fire types. Looking down, I saw my little Torchic trying to walk. I picked her up, and decided to carry her home. She was just a baby, and yet she was already so ambitious. My other pokemon, Torkoal, did not like walking much, but was very courageous. In the adoption center, she even tried to fight another pokemon. Smiling, I started to run. I wanted to show my friends my new pokemon.



Torchic scratched me! Dangit! Now I have to walk the rest of the way back. Torchic smiled back, and I couldn't help myself. I started to laugh. Just on the sidewalk. I just started laughing. Soon a couple of people were looking at me. Ehehe.

Eek. This is not good. I gotta get outta here

Quickly sucking up Torchic into her pokeball, I started running. Soon I was in my house. I looked around, and nobody was home. Then I looked on the counter. There was a little letter:

Dear Trainer,
You have been invited to compete in an easter egg hunt. The eggs are very tasty, so that will be your motivation. Your obstacles are other trainers. If you defeat a trainer, you take their easter egg. If you lose, they take yours. Believe me, you will want these eggs. When a pokemon eats them, they level up depending on what opponent they fought. The higher level the opponent was, the more levels the pokemon will gain. You will also recieve some chocolate eggs for your pleasure. Your teleporter will arrive at your door at about 4:25. Be sure to be ready!


Hmmmmm....seems pretty cool

I decided that I should go. Them I looked at the clock. 4:23.

[b]OH NO! ONLY 2 MINUTES!!![/i]

I rushed upstairs, and grabbed my jacket, incase it was cold. Then I dashed out the door, quickly grabbing my pokeballs from the little rack that I had. Then I saw the teleporter. I only had a few seconds to make it. I dashed, and finally I was in.


Suddenly, I found myself on an island that I had never seen before. The sea was at my back, so I started walking inland, not knowing what I might find.

Then it hit me. I had forgotten Torchic's pokeball at home! I would have to do battle with Torkoal for now. Hopefully Torkoal could level up and become even stronger than before. In front of me I saw a thick forest.

Not bad...

I walking up, and started to come inside. Thats when I started hearing things. Screams of pokemon that were falling, agonizing losses.

What is this place...

Then, in front of me, I saw a trainer.

"C'mon you loser. Lets battle! I will take your easter egg!" the enemy trainer said.

"But I don't have an--" I attempted to say

"Shut up! Go IggyBiggy!" the enemy yelled.

"Okay fine. I got nothing to lose. You will fall! Torkoal, rise!" I yelled.

Torkoal didn't look much phased by the little Igglybuff, but I know that it could harness quite a bit of power. Knowing the true extend of its power, I knew Torkoal could have a tough time.

Torkoal's POV

Hmmm, a little pest. Easily I can destroy this thing. Maybe I should go easy on it. I think I'll just wait a see what it can do.

"Iggy! Cmon! Lets show this thing what we are. Use an Attract!" the other trainer yelled.

I didn't see anything attractive. I turned away, disgusted at this...thing! Ugh! It will pay.

"Torkoal, this thing is pitiful! Use a Smog attack! Send poisonous gases towards the little imp!" my trainer yelled.

Haha! Die! COncentrating hard, I summoned the poisonous fumes that rested inside my body. Whirling them around me, I tossed them at the little thing. Seeing it cough and wheeze was fun. As the poisonous cloud overwhelmed the little thing, I could hear the enemy trainer yelling something out.


AH! Did I just get hit by a train? Argh! Then I saw the thing, rolling around like a madbeast, trying to roll over anything. That's what happened to me. Argh! That hurt! Weakly, I got up again, and looked to my trainer.


Oh no. Torkoal was surely in trouble. Eruption would be useless at this little life, but I had to save Torkoal somehow. Wait! That was it! Eruption!

"Torkoal! Use an Eruption! Crack up the earth and create holes and cracks everywhere. Send magma spurting at the thing!" I yelled.

Torkoal smiled. Easily she knew what I was thinking. Suddenly, white smoke puffed out of Torkoal. THe ground below her started cracking, and suddenly the earth started to shatter.


A huge spurt of fire blasted up. Aimed at Igglybuff, it still was useless. The rolling pokemon just slightly slowed down, but it the rollout continued. Now the devil was coming back for another hit. Igglybuff rolled and rolled. Suddenly, it stopped! Perfect! It was trapped atop the volcano that Torkoal had created out of the earth. Now it was time to finish this!

"Torkoal! Use Eruption again!" I yelled.

Torkoal smiled, and suddenly an enormous fireball erupted from the volcano. Igglybuff flew into the air, and then hit the ground, destroyed. Its eyes were Xs. Yes! I knew I won!

http://www.pokemasters.net/images/games/ruby_sapphire/rs105.png Lv. 7 (Eruption, Smog, Ember, Curse)

Torkoal learned CURSE!

I smiled, and recalled Torkoal for a nice rest. The enemy trainer hung his head and tossed me an easter egg. I gave it to Torkoal, and he raised two levels! Yes! Torkoal learned Curse! This was turning out to be good.

"Wait a minute! You aren't done yet! You may have beaten my brother, but you won't beat me!" Another trainer took the place of the old one. "I am the sister of the trainer you just fought. Me and my pokemon shall defeat you!"

I looked at the girl, and grimaced. Torkoal was in no shape to battle. She had already wasted much of her energy in the two Eruption attacks, and I didn't know if she could take any more. However, I knew that she would not like to forfeit, so, putting all logic behind me, I sent out Torkoal.

"Hm! Torkoal again? Well, this time this pokemon will not fall so easy! GOOO IGGLYBUFF!!!!" the trainer yelled. "You know what to do, right Iggly? Good girl!"

"Okay, Torkoal, so Eruption is out of the question. You are too weak. Our only chance is our new attack. Use Curse!" I yelled.

Suddenly, TOrkoal started to change colors. Suddenly, smoke started to erupt from his back. The smoke started to wisp around Torkoal, and suddenly he turned back to normal. THe enemy once again tried to Rollout, but Torkoal held his ground. Wow.

"Nice Torkoal! Use another Curse!" I yelled. This was going very good for me.

Once again a brilliant display occured, and once again Igglybuff couldn't even phase Torkoal.

"CMon! TOrkoal, keep it going! Curse!" I yelled. This was great!

This time, Torkoal smiled, and the brilliant display continued. And, once again, Igglybuff was helpless. YES!

"Okay! Torkoal! Its time to win this! Use an Ember!" I yelled.

Torkoal started to charge power, and suddenly an enormous fireball erupted out of his mouth. Igglybuff was afraid, and stopped rolling.

"NOOOOOO!" the enemy trainer yelled.


Igglybuff went flying, and hit a tree hard.


Then, it sunk to the floor, defeated. YES!

http://www.pokemasters.net/images/games/ruby_sapphire/rs105.png Lv. 9 (Eruption, Ember, Smog, Curse)

Yes! I won! I smiled, and took the egg. Yummy! It tasted really good. Yummy. Then, I started walking even more into the interior of the island, not knowing what dangers awaited me.


How was that?

Lady Vulpix
9th April 2003, 03:18 PM
That was a very nice intro, Karin! Take 5 stamps! ¢¢¢¢¢
SneaselReborned, I'll read yours soon. Amy may rate it if she has the time.

Lady Vulpix
10th April 2003, 12:06 PM
SneaselReborned, that was nice, but the phrases looked disconnected from each other. You may want to put in more text to link them next time. Take 5 stamps, and welcome to the Battle Range! ¢¢¢¢¢

12th April 2003, 06:56 PM
I had a hard time getting started, but i think what i came up with is ok.

(Nala's POV)

After the winter games were over, I decided to just go home and rest with my team. I was actually glad I didn’t choose Jasmine to participate after seeing what the others had gone through. I did realize that she was now old enough to battle. I looked over at her and smiled. She had grown significantly in the last six months. She saw me looking at her and smiled. All I needed was a nice friendly battle. I wanted her first to be fun.

Yana chose that moment to jump onto my lap. “Oomph!” She smiled sheepishly. How’s your paw?” “Much better.” She replied. “Whatever Nurse Joy did, it worked.” “I nodded, and began to carefully remove the bandages. I blinked. The wound was gone. You could barely tell that she had been injured. “Well, I’m going to go to bed.” Yana nodded, and jumped off my lap allowing me to get ready for bed. Once I climbed in bed, she jumped on top of the covers. I rubbed her head, as I read a chapter of The Return of the King. When I was finished, I placed the book on the nightstand and turned out the light, drifting off to sleep.

The next morning, I awoke to the sounds of laughter. I got up and walked into the living room. My team was gathered around the television watching Dr. Dolittle. I decided to go far a walk after I got ready.

(Kovu's POV)

I had seen the movie already, so I just hung out at the back of the crowd with Blazer. It was starting to get rather quiet around here. “You know, I kinda wish something would happen. Nothing bad. Just something that will be interesting and fun. I’m getting bored.” Blazer yawned. “I know what you mean.” It wasn’t long before Amy had returned. She looked as if she wanted to go for a walk. Sure enough, when as saw that we weren’t watching the movie, she asked if we wanted to come. “Sure,” I answered, as Blazer nodded.

(Nala’s POV)

It was a nice day outside. Occasionally, a gently breeze would present itself. It was one of those days that I just needed to get out and not stay cooped up inside a house. It had been a while since I had last seen Steve, but at least I still got to talk to him frequently. I looked over at Blazer and Kovu. They seemed to enjoy these walks as much as I did. “I guess its time we should head back.” They nodded. With that, we turned around and went back home. Once we reached the house I noticed that there was a note taped to my door. I pulled it off and went inside. The others were still watching the movie. “Did anyone stop by while we were out?” “Not that we were aware of.” Talut answered before receiving a chorus of “SHUSH!” from the others. I nodded, and then began to read the note.

If you’re looking for fun and battles,
Don’t hesitate, follow the directions,
Which will lead you to a portal to an interesting place.

Strange but interesting, I thought, as the other members of my team wandered in. The movie had ended, but they were curious about what we had been talking about.

After a group discussion, we decided to check it out. I recalled everyone except for Blazer, who accompanied me as we followed the directions on the note. We knew we were at the right place when a huge portal appeared. There were hues of red, blues, greens, and many other colors of the rainbow swirling about inside it. I offered Blazer his pokeball, and he retreated to the safety of it as I clipped it back onto my belt. Taking a deep breath, I stepped through. Almost immediately, I felt as if I was on one of those fast rides at an amusement park. The acceleration was very rapid and, unfortunately, I had no control over it. After a while, I felt myself start to slow down clumsily landing on my knees. Climbing to my feet, I brushed the dirt off of my jeans. Once me jeans were dirt free, I released my team. Jasmine curled up around my neck, as I took in my surroundings. My eyes widened when I saw the gigantic stone heads. That could only mean we were in the Easter Islands. I gulped. Not too far away, I saw a booth decorated with pastel balloons. I approached it, hoping to find someone that could answer my questions, but it was empty. I turned to walk away when I heard sweetie. “Hey! There’s a sign.” I looked, and sure enough, there was one.

"Hello, and welcome to the Easter Islands. In this exciting event, you are on a quest to earn Easter eggs, a very popular tradition held each and every Easter. However, in order to receive one of these delicious treats, you must defeat one of the many trainers here to find one (it will always be a random color, and its contents are always random (e.g. for example the egg could be a chocolate flavored egg with or without a creamy filling inside). The trainers here will always be holding one egg, but getting it (and learning what type of egg it is) will be difficult, as you will have to battle with some tough Pokemon.

(Jasmine’s POV)

I wasn’t exactly sure as to what was going on or where we were, but the overall mood was pleasant. I heard Nala mention something about battles as she was reading the sign. I wasn’t exactly sure of what to do in a battle, but before I had either been too young or it was too dangerous. I wasn’t a baby any more. I mean, I didn’t sleep the entire day like I used too, and I hardly ever took naps now.

(Salem’s POV)

“Well, there’s never a dull moment, is there?” I said, getting a few laughs from the group. I looked around as Nala spoke. "I guess we need to find one of these trainers." We nodded, when I heard the sound of footsteps getting closer. “Actually, I think one of them has already found us.” Sure enough, within minutes, a teenage girl appeared. Nala looked at me and raised an eyebrow. I blushed. “I… uh… heard her coming.” I admitted. Sweetie started to giggle but stopped when I shot her a look.

(Nala’s POV)

I watched as the girl drew closer. She was a foot shorter than I was, with waist length black hair. She was confident. In her hand was an egg wrapped in a pastel blue foil wrapper. “Hi,” she said smiling. “Would you be interested in battling for this?” “Sure, why not.”

(Jasmine’s POV)

I stayed still listening to the conversation from my perch around Nala’s neck. I sighed. She had just agreed to a battle with someone and chances were good that she would pick on of the others. “I’ll start off with one of my Pokemon that needs training…” There was a flash of red… “Pi?” “Go Pichu.” Nala looked at the pichu for a few seconds before looking at me. “Jasmine, how do you fell about having you’re first battle?” I couldn’t believe my ears, but I nodded yes, squeezing Nala in an attempt to hug. “Can’t breath,” she gasped, and I loosened my grip. Blushing, “Sorry.” She nodded, “It’s ok.” With that, Nala knelt down so that I could slither down her arm onto the ground.

“Hi!” the pichu said. She looked puzzled, and I wondered why. “What happened?” she asked. Now I was puzzled. “Nothing. Why?” She pointed to my wings. “Those. I’ve only seen pictures of dratinis before, and none of them had wings.” I smiled. “Well, I was born with them. I’ve been told that I was special…” The pichu’s trainer coughed. “Is she ok?” I asked. “Yeah, I think she wants us to start the battle though. I nodded. “Well, I’m as ready as I’ll ever be.”

Jasmine L.5 Winged Dratini VS. L.5 Pichu

(Nala’s POV)

I had to chuckle at Jasmine and the pichu. They were talking to each other, at least until the pichu’s trainer coughed, indicating that she would like the battle to hurry up and start. The pichu struck a battle pose as Jasmine sat there coiled like a snake about to strike. Since I had been helping Yana, it was easier to jump into the trainer mode offering advice. Of course, most of my team was fairly independent, and Yana was gradually getting there. I was getting practice as well. “Ok, Jasmine start off with wrap.” She nodded, springing into action. The pichu was running straight at her in an attempt to headbutt her. Jasmine slithered to the left, at the last second, as the pichu fell on the ground where jasmine had been seconds earlier. Jasmine wrapped herself tightly around the pichu’s lower body. The pichu tried to wriggle free but was unable to do so. Jasmine just tightened around the pichu. “Pichu, don’t just sit there doing nothing, give her a thundershock.” The pichu nodded and the electrical pouches on her cheeks began to spark. “OW!” Jasmine shouted as she released her hold on the pichu as the current coursed through her body. I winced. “The pichu took advantage of Jasmine’s distraction and used another headbutt, this time connecting. I could see that Jasmine was getting tired, and I knew we needed to end this fast. I smiled when I remembered her bred on move. “Jasmine use your blizzard.” She nodded and closed her eyes. The pichu’s trainer looked on, nervous. The air began to get colder as Jasmine concentrated. Jasmine smiled, opened her mouth, and launched several ice shards at her opponent. The assault was brief, but intense. When Jasmine was finished, the pichu was encased in a block of ice. “Nice work Jasmine. One more blizzard ought to finish it.” She nodded, using another blizzard. This time, the pichu couldn’t take anymore, and she fainted. Jasmine had won! “Nice battle, that dratini of yours is something.” I smiled, “Thanks.” I then asked Kiara to help thaw out the pichu. She nodded and set to work.

Jasmine grew to L.6!

Once the pichu had been thawed out, she was recalled back into the safety of her pokeball. “Ok, my next Pokemon won’t be as easy. Igglybuff, its your turn!” With that, she threw another pokeball, and in a red flash an igglybuff appeared. I could tell right away that she was stronger than the pichu, but the majority of my team were too strong to battle it. I would have to either use Jasmine again or Yana. I didn’t want to push Jasmine any more, so I decided on Yana. “Yana, are you up to a battle?” She nodded, and I smiled. She was becoming more confident with every battle. Recently, she even had her first win in the battle tower.

Aiyana L.9 Houndour VS. L.10 Igglybuff

(Aiyana's POV)

“Hi.” The igglybuff just ignored me. I shrugged. “Igglybuff start out with sing.” I could already tell that this was not going to be an easy battle. “Yana use mud slap.” I smiled, turned away from my opponent. I spat on the dirt, then kicked the mud all over the igglybuff. She started to sing he name softly and I could feel my eyelids growing heavy until I could no longer keep them open.

(Nala’s POV)

I watched on nervously as Yana succumbed to the igglybuff’s sing. I didn’t know is she could hear me or not, but I had to try. “Ember.” Meanwhile, the igglybuff was wiping the mud off of her body. “Nice work Igglybuff. Use an icy wind next.” As I watched, I could felt he wind begin to pick up and take on an icy chill. The gale slammed into Yana. When the attack was over, I saw Yana open one of her eyes. I started to say something but stopped when I saw her shake her head no ever so slightly. I stayed silent and watched. The igglybuff was suddenly enveloped in a pink glow and rose high up into the air. “What the? How did she wake up so fast?” the other trainer asked when she saw Yana now standing and looking at the igglybuff. It was at that second that the glow faded and the igglybuff fell to the ground, and bounced. I winced. Her trainer turned to face me. How is your houndour using a psychic move?” I just smiled. “Her hidden power is psychic.” “Oh. “Igglybuff, use another sing.”

(Aiyana’s POV)

I had a plan. I just hoped it would work. I scooped up some mud in my paw, and waited until the igglybuff had opened her mouth to start singing. Then I tossed the mud, aiming for her mouth. Bull’s Eye! It went inside like I hoped it would and she began coughing and spitting to get it out. I took a deep breath, before spitting several tiny fireballs at her. He cried out in pain, before curling into a tight ball and rolled straight at me. Uh oh, I thought. Before I could get out of the way, she hit me. I winced, as she rolled away. I decided to see if I could use my hidden power to slow her down. This was the first time I directly tried to control how it worked. It wasn’t easy, and thus, it took a while before anything happened. As the igglybuff came closer, gaining speed with every second, a glow surrounded her and he speed began to decrease. It wasn’t fast enough, because she bumped into me. I gritted my teeth, and fired another ember at her. I smiled as her eyes closed and she didn’t attempt to get up. She was unconscious.

I won!
I grew to L.11!
I learned solarbeam for my free TM.

(Nala’s POV)

Yana was becoming more independent. She had battled most of the battle on her own that time. I was proud of her. The trainer recalled her igglybuff, before she walked over to me. “You have some nice strong Pokemon. Err… What’s your name?” “Thanks,” I said smiling. “My name’s Amy, but my nickname is Nala.” She smiled. “It was a pleasure battling you, Nala. My name is Erika. I don’t have a nickname. You earned this,” she said handing me the foil wrapped egg. I thanked her, and once more the portal appeared. I stuffed the egg into my pocket, before recalling the others once more. Taking a deep breath, I stepped through the portal once more for another wild ride. This time, at least, it was back to my house. Once inside, I released everyone again, and went into the kitchen. I pulled the wrapper off of the egg before I took a knife out of the drawer. I cut the egg in half, giving a half to Jasmine and a half to Yana. It was solid milk chocolate. I smiled as I watched them eat it.

12th April 2003, 08:01 PM
This is perhaps my longest battle story yet and its only the intro and the first game; the ice race. I'm sorry for taking so long in posting it. I was going to just post the whole thing at once when I was finished, but it'll take me at least another week or two to get there, so here is, like I said, the intro and the first winter game. Thanks for giving me the extra time!

[MK’s POV]
I was so unbelievably bored. There was nothing on the TV to watch and no one was online to chat with. My favorite message board didn’t have anything new, either. I wasn’t tired, so I couldn’t take a nap. I was just plain bored. Maybe I could take a walk into town and see what was going on there. Maybe I’d see some Dragon Tamer friends. Yeah, that was a good idea. I needed to get one of my team members to come with me, though. It was a general rule in town to never be without a Pokemon for protection. Maybe Christian would like to come with me, for old time’s sake.

I pulled on my sneakers and a lightweight jacket and grabbed Christian’s Pokeball. He was outside, though, probably with BlueShadow. So I made my way down the stairs and went outside. Sure enough, there were Christian and Blue, practicing their attacks on each other. I didn’t want to stop them, so I sat down on the plastic chair and watched. They both noted my presence and stopped long enough to smiled and wave at me. I returned their wave and enjoyed the show.

Christian lifted BlueShadow’s huge body with his Psychic attack and tossed him into a nearby tree. Blue quickly got up and opened his mouth wide. Flames began to boil and form. Christian hurried to take cover from the Flamethrower attack. But Blue was watching his every move and calculated where Christian would be next and shot the flames toward him. The attack made a direct hit. Christian’s sleek and shiny fur was singed. But instead of being in pain, he laughed to himself and signaled to Blue that he was finished practicing. The two team members approached each other and shook paws. I held out a Potion, offering it to BlueShadow before he took off into the air. He waved it away, smiling happily, and flew away.

“Hehe, you two are too smart for each other, you know that, right?”
“Nah, the practice is a good thing for us. Though I hate when he uses that Flamethrower attack, it always makes my fur look like poop.”
“Oh Christian, you’re a nut. Here, take this Potion, it’ll fix up your fur in no time. Oh yeah, would you like to go into town with me for a bit? We’ve not been for a long while, it’d be fun.”
“Sure, okay. Sounds like a plan to me.”
“Great! I’m going to go grab my pack and let the others know where we are going and then I’ll be right out.”
“Alright, then.”

So I took myself into the house and upstairs to grab my pack. Then downstairs again [man, I sure must burn tons of calories a day!] to the living room where my team was. They all looked up at me.

“Hey guys, I’m going into town. Christian’s coming with me. You guys want anything?”
“Nah thanks, I’m good,” said many murmurs. “Alright, I’ll see you all later, then. We won’t be gone too long.” “Bye!”

I went back outside where Christian was waiting for me. He grinned and ran ahead of me, leading the way towards town. We hadn’t spent much time alone since Jesse was born, and that was a long time ago. It was nice to talk to him like he was my best friend again, not just a member of my team.

We told jokes and laughed about all of our silly past memories. We recalled the hardest battle that we had ever been in with the Dragon Tamers. It happened when Christian was still a little Eevee. Team Rocket had taken over a town and were killing Pokemon and possibly fellow humans as well. We had been called to help take care of them. Christian was all I had and he wasn’t a strong battler yet. I don’t ever really remember what enemy Pokemon he had to battle. Whatever it was, he won, but just barely. I remember hearing all the shouting voices of hurt trainers and Pokemon; as well as those who had lost their friends for good. I remember being one of those trainers who cried into the night because I thought Christian was gone. He had fainted right as his opponent fainted. I wasn’t able to get him back into consciousness. But by the miracle of God, he survived…

“ Man, we had some pretty hard times together, don’t you think, MK?”
“Yeah, we sure have. It’s amazing that with such a tough past and tough battles that we’re still going strong… We’re here!”
“So where’re we going first?”
“Hmm, how about to Wal-Mart to pick up some food and stuff?”

So we made our way down the street to our local Wal Mart store. We saw many new and friendly faces of both trainers and Pokemon. We even saw little baby Eevee and Pichu crawling around. Some of them were getting too close to the street, where cars were driving along. Christian helped that by picking them all up with his psychic attack, turning them to face the other way, and gently set them back on the ground to go their marry little way. I guess they either had really bad trainers who weren’t looking after them or no trainers at all.

We went into the store and I grabbed a cart from the greeter.
“Chris, do you want to stay with me or meet me somewhere when I’m through?”
“I’m going to go look around, so I’ll meet you here in fifteen minutes?”
“Okay, have fun.”

[Christian’s POV]
I had been wanting to check out the latest Nintendo games for my play station. So I made my way to the electronics and wasn’t really watching where I was going. I ran into a bulletin board that was right smack in the middle of the isle. “Geesh! They want people to run into this thing, don’t they?” I asked myself.
“No sir, they just want trainers to see it.”
“See what?”
“Open your eyes and read the paper attached to the board, boy.”

I finally looked up to see who was talking to me. It was a rather old and very wrinkly Venusaur. He was glaring at me with a nasty look that chilled me. I shrugged his look off and looked up at the board. It was from the Dragon Tamers and the Winter Games!

A smiled leapt across my face as I looked around for free copies. I found the pile and snatched one up, slipping and sliding as I tried to run on the smooth tile floor. I finally got to MK and jammed to paper into her hands.

“What’s this? … The Winter Games! I’d heard Nala talking about something like this, but she wouldn’t tell me exactly what it was. Do you think we should go, Chris?”
“Heck, yeah!”
“Great! Lets get finished up here and we’ll be off.”

We arrived to find the house a wreck. “Guys, what happened here,” I asked the innocent faces of my son and grandson.
“Well, I guess we got carried away and messed things up…”
“Yep. *sigh* Come on, help me clean this up before MK comes in with the groceries.”

I helped Jes and Torrey clean up the mess. It only took about two minutes, and by that time, MK was inside, unpacking the stuff we bought.

“Okay, Chris, Jesse, and Torrey, would you all round up the team? I have a surprise.”

The three of us tore off into the house and passed on the message. Soon, we were all gathered around our trainer. She had a grin on her face, as did I.

“Alright, guess what everyone? The Dragon Tamers have announced the arrival of the Winter Games. I’ve decided that we’re going to participate, so we’ll be leaving first thing in the morning. There will be three different games that give one level of experience. There is a course, a hockey game, and an ice skating race. You’ll all have to choose who gets to participate amongst yourselves, I don’t think I could make the decision myself. There is only one Pokemon allowed in the ice skating race and course and three allowed in the hockey game.”

Murmurs arose in the air. Everyone was extremely excited about the great news. MK grinned happily and walked out of the room, leaving us the info we need to decide who did what. After a few minutes of jabber, I took charge.

“Okay guys, we need to decide who’s doing what as soon as possible so MK can send in the registration papers. So, who would like to take part in the ice skating race?”

Silence… then someone finally spoke up.

“I would,” said a soft voice. “But I don’t know if MK will let me or not…”

It was little Khaisa. She little a little red in the face, almost like she was embarrassed from speaking.

“I don’t see why she wouldn’t let you take part in it. You’re old enough now, heck, you’re already flying around the house. I’ll put your name down.”

She smiled a huge grin and sat up proudly. BlueShadow patted her encouragingly on her back.

“Good, so who wants the course?”
“I’m up for a hard challenge, so I’ll take it.”
“Okay, Zippo, your name is down. There for the hockey game. I know I want to play that one, who else wants to?”
“Count me in, Chris.”
“And me.”
“Okay, me, BlueShadow, and Jesse… That’s it, we’re done. Does anyone have any objections?”

With a grin on my face, I acted like a judge and slammed my paw on the ground, like I was signifying the end of court. My teammates laughed and started talking to each other. I took the paper with our names on it into my mouth and ran upstairs.

“Here you go, MK, we all decided who’s doing what. I wrote down our names. Its all there.”
“Okay, thanks Christian! I’m actually packing right now, so if you want to go down and tell the others to starting getting stuff together, I’d appreciate it.”
“Sure thing.”

So I ran back downstairs and asked everyone to help get stuff together. We made a game out it. I use my psychic attack to pick things up and fly them over to Blue or Jesse and Torrey. Then they’d catch it and throw it to some one else and eventually the item would end up in the bag where it needed to be. Within a few minutes, we were finished and MK was running through the halls checking to make sure everything was good to go.

“Who’s up for pizza now?”
“ME!!!!!” We all said at the same time.
“Great, lets go!”

So we all charged and raced each other to the front door and outside. MK was even running as hard as she could to beat us all. This was just one of those nights where we could be little kids again.

“Okay everybody, shush up. The Games start in about a week. So we were a little slow finding the announcement papers. So, to get some good training in for those of your participating, we’re going to head to the Eevee House and practice. Nala’s told me that she freezes the pool in order to let her Pokemon skate on the ice, so that’s what we’ll do. So, get your stuff together and lets get going!”

So we did. Once everything was packed into MK’s bag, all my teammates returned to their Pokeballs except Blue and I. Us and MK walked outside and made sure all the doors and windows were locked. Then, Blue knelt down and MK and I leapt onto his back and we were off. It takes a long while to get to the Eevee House from where we live, so I had some time to think about what I wanted to practice and all that good stuff. I was sure excited. I hoped Blue and the others were, too, it is going to be a ton of fun.

[Khaisa’s POV]

I heard MK’s voice from outside my ball and felt myself being released. I looked around the familiar room and followed my big brother Blue to the pool. He had a pleased look on his face when all of us looked around at him to freeze it. He drew in a deep breathe and a gush of icy water-like substance flew out of his mouth and into the water. It immediately froze the area where it hit and began to quickly spread until it reached the edges. He stepped out onto the ice to make sure it was froze. It held his weight, so it was safe.

Christian, Jesse, and Zippo made their way onto the ice, first goofing off before looking serious and trying to stand up. I was a little afraid, but I felt good about the ice. It was my type of thing and I felt comfortable around it. BlueShadow winked at me and waved at me to join him. He was clear out in the middle. I slithered the the edge and started onto the ice. Brrrrr, it was cold! But I finally got used to it.

I looked around before continuing to Blue. They were all slipping and sliding uncontrollably while Blue and I were just fine. Must be a natural thing for us dragons to have good balance on ice, I guess.

“Come on, Khaisa, we’ll get you racing before you know it!” said Blue when I slide my way to his side. “Since you’re in the race, lets you and I take a few laps around here and see how you do.” “Okay.”

So we took off. Blue was digging his daggered toes into the ice and pushing himself along, using his huge tail and arms for balance. He also had his wings spread out, I guess for reasons I didn’t understand. As fast as he was going, I was right there with him. Gliding along on the ice was extremely easy for me because I really couldn’t fall. The wind in my face really felt awesome. I was really doing this! And I was really going to win the race when it came.

We did about twenty laps around the pool before we stopped.
“Wow, Khaisa, you are really going to do well. Ice comes naturally for you!”
“Hehe, thank you, Blue. Same for you.”

He smiled at me. “You okay to practice on your own now or do you need anymore help.”
“I’m fine. Thank you for your help.”
“No problem, anything for my sis.”

MK let us stay and practice for a few more hours before announcing it was time to go back home. She said we’d keep coming back everyday until the Games began. I truly felt confident about this. When I had first spoke up that I wanted to play in the games, I honestly felt that Christian wouldn’t let me because I was still too young and too little. But here I was, getting ready for them! Yay!

[Jesse’s POV]
[The day before the Games]

Everyone was so excited. We just couldn’t wait to get going. We had traveled from the Eevee House to the town in which the games were being held and had booked a hotel. Since those of us who were participating in the challenges needed a good night’s rest, we decided to just lounge around by watching TV and eating all night. I was so excited to be able to be on the hockey team with Dad and Blue. It was going to be great!

But my luck soon changed. MK got a phone call at about 6:00 P.M. and was asked to meet someone in the lobby. We all look confused, as did she. She was gone for a good twenty minutes. When she came back, she didn’t look too happy at all. The news wasn’t good.

“Um… I don’t know how to tell you this, Christian and Blue, but I’m afraid you won’t be able to be in the hockey game tomorrow… *dead silence* That was Gabi and Nala who I met with and they told me that the hockey teams must all be in the same level range… Jesse is at a much lower level than the two of you and well… Gabi just won’t have it. I don’t understand why not, but that’s the rules. I should have known! I’m sorry, boys… We’re going to have to pick new team mates in Jesse’s level range… or switch your games around. If Zippo and Khaisa want to keep their spots, we’ll find new players, but if they want to do the hockey game with Jesse instead of the course and ice race, you two can do them instead. Does any of that make sense?”

“Yeah, I think so. So if I play in the hockey game instead of the course, Christian or Blue can take my place in the course and I’ll take one of their spots in the hockey game? And the same with Khaisa?”

“Exactly, Zippo, but its your choice. You and Khaisa have practiced long and hard on your events and it’ll be a tough game for you if you choose the hockey game. Its up to you.”

“Well, I don’t know about Zippo, but I’ll do anything to let my big bubba Blue and Christian play! I’m up for the hockey game rather than the ice race. What do you think Zippo?”

“I think you’re right. I’ll play in the hockey game and let them have the course, its no problem. We all get to play this way!”

“Great! Is that okay with everyone else? And you, Jesse?”

“Of course it is!”

MK smiled at me and everyone else. For a minute there, I was afraid that Dad and BlueShadow wouldn’t be able to play at all. This isn’t exactly what we wanted to do, we all wanted to play in the games we picked, but we can’t always have our way. So we were happy with what we got. I’d have just the same amount of fun with Zippo and Khaisa as I would have had with Dad and Blue.

Satisfied and excited, we all headed to bed.


“Rise and shine everyone! Its game time! Jes, I know you’re not still asleep, stop that snoring.”

I snorted with laughter and shot up off my spot on the floor. Then I remembered the night before and was curious to know if Dad and Blue had decided what they were going to play in yet. Turns out Blue was going to take Khaisa’s place in the race and Dad was going to take Zippo’s place in the course.

So naturally, being the first to perform, Blue was a nervous wreck. As tough as he always seemed to me, I’d never seen him worried about anything. Truthfully, I looked up to him and because he was nervous, it made me nervous, too.

“Hey MK, do you know what our opponents are?”

“Oh yeah, I do. Hang on, I’ll get the paper.”

So MK ran up and then back down the stairs carrying a paper.

“Okay, BlueShadow, you’ll be racing a Lapras. Jesse, Khaisa and Zippo, you’ll be playing against a Smoochum, Swinub, and Squirtle. And Chris, you’ll be on the course with a Kingdra. Sounds like you’ll all be having a tough challenge, which makes it even better.”

She smiled and told us that we needed to be headed to the stadium in about ten minutes, so we all hurried about getting ourselves groomed and cleaned up for the day.

[BlueShadow’s POV]

Okay, I was nervous. But only because I hadn’t battle that many battles here with the Dragon Tamers. I got most of my training in the Battle Tower against other trainers. So I had a right to be nervous, right?

Within a few minutes of leaving the hotel, we arrived at the area where the Winter Games were being held. MK told us to remain where she left us and went to register us. Little Jayce and Jeepers were shivering with excitement and had to be picked up and held in order to keep them from running off. They were still kittens, so it was okay.

“Okay Blue, you’re up. I’ll walk you to the rink after I tell the rest of the team what is going on,” MK informed me.

I nodded my head and listened to her tell the team where everything was being held and at what times. Then she turned back to me and seemed to sense my fear.

“You’ll be alright, BlueShadow.”

She even took my clawed hand into her own and led me away. So I was “big and bad” but I still felt better when MK was there to take care of me.

“Well, here it is Blue. There is a Lapras running around here somewhere, you ought to seek him out and see what he’s like. That way you’ll be able to know in advance if he’s down right mean or a fair fighter. Good luck! I’ll be at the finish line waiting for you.”

“Thank you, MK.”

So I wondered around the icy rink, looking around at all the trainers and their Pokemon. I spotted a huge Lapras parked at the starting line. I figured he was the one I was to race. I made my way to him and grinned when he noticed me. My smile soon faded as he looked me up and down before he spoke.

“A blue Dragonite? What’s with that! You must be some sort of freak, am I wrong?”

I didn’t say a word. The Lapras raged in laughter by the look of my hurt face. I turned away from him, wishing I hadn’t been put into this race. Why couldn’t I have still done the hockey game? Christian would have helped me out in a case like this. I sighed and wondered why I was assigned to race this particular Lapras rather than one of the others that were wandering around. They looked much nicer.

“Would BlueShadow the Dragonite and the ice race Lapras please gain their places before the starting line!”

That was my cue. I took a look at MK at the other side of the rink. She made me feel a ton better. I took my place beside the Lapras, who was still snickering loudly. I decided that if he wanted to be tough, I would be too. I caught his eye and rolled my own, signifying that whatever he said to me was going to bother me.

“Would you like ice skates, Mr. Dragon?” A worker asked me. I shook my head no. I had my claws to carry me along the ice.

As soon as the worker was cleared, another appeared beside us with a gun. He counted to three and pulled the trigger. The sound boomed through the air and surged through my ears.

My muscles tightened as I pushed forward with great might. The Lapras wasn’t having trouble at all, but he was only a bit slower getting started. When he began to gain on me, I dug my clawed toes deep into the ice and surged forward. As I had hoped, they worked as ice skates for me.

For the first few laps, not I or the Lapras attacked each other. I believe we were both taking note that we needed to save our speed and energy for the very last lap in order to win. At least, that was my plan.

We were along on our fourth lap when the first attack hit me. I was a few feet ahead of the Lapras when he shot a dreaded Ice Beam. My huge tail took the hit and was made into a frozen block. I growled angrily as the Lapras passed me. An ice block on my tail wasn’t going to stop me. I knew exactly how I could break it. I stopped on the ice and lowered my body to the ground and picked up my tail, heaving the heavy ice block into the air. I swung my tail hard onto the ice below and shattered the block. The force broke it right off and left me to catch up with the Lapras.

I gained on him and laughed when his puzzled look told me how he wondered how I got loose from the ice. I decided to let him get the idea by hitting hard in the face with an Iron Tail attack. It did more damage than usual because not only was it hard as iron but was also pretty much frozen solid and cold.

My opponent screamed hastily and was knocked off course. He tried to hold his face with his flippers but couldn’t. I felt bad that I caused pain to him but it had to happen.

I skated along and past the fifth lap. Only five more to go. I took a chance at stealing a glimpse of the Lapras behind me. He was a least a quarter of a lap behind me. I had to hurry to get ahead. I concentrated hard on being faster and quicker. In seconds, I was whipping here and there along the track with speed that could only mean I had used Agility. The Lapras was far behind me now. Maybe I actually had a chance to win this!

Our race stayed in this mode for several more laps. But my luck changed when he suddenly caught up with me and scared me out of my wits by using a Growl attack. I cowered down and away from him buy regained my courage. I couldn’t afford to let him stay ahead of me. An Ice Beam attack of my own formed within my mouth. I was trying to decide where to aim it when a second Ice Beam of his hit me in my gut area. My own was pushed out of me, prematurely and ineffective. I again growled my anger deep in my throat. The Lapras caught the fury in my eyes and sped up quickly. I pried the ice off of my stomach. Then I realized it was our ninth lap and he was way ahead of me.

Once again I used Agility to catch up. I had a plan, a nasty one, but I was allowed. ¼ of a lap, ½ of a lap, and finally, ¾ the lap I stayed behind him. On the last quarter stretch, I powered up my Thunderbolt attack, quickly and quietly. I jumped into the air and hovered, aiming my attack carefully. Then I shot it. The hot electricity surged through my opponent painfully and stunningly. I knew it was a weakness of his but I purposely did not charge it up full power. It was only about a half.

The Lapras was forced to stop skating to recover from the attack. He knew the race was over and therefore did not even try. I felt bad but hurried on anyways. It was all I could do. Within seconds I crossed the finish line and was greeted by MK and my teammates.

“You did it, Blue! And in record time, too! Do you feel stronger? Because according to the Pokedex, you’re a level higher!”

All I could do was smile. I was pretty winded, having skated my hardest and fastest on the last quarter. I needed one thing though.

“MK, can I have a tail warmer? Its frozen solid!”

I grinned with the rest of my team and MK happily shook her head. She then led me to the Pokecenter to get warmed up.

***To be continued…***

BlueShadow grew to level 57! Yay for Blue!

13th April 2003, 12:44 AM
I have a quick question. I just found a file on my computer that had a lot of my old stats before I got inactive a long while ago. On that file, it said that I had already done this "adopties" stuff. So I'm wondering if it is at all possible to use the old one I had. This was it:

Pidgeotto (F) Lv. 19 (Faint Attack, Gust, Quick Attack, Sand Attack, Tackle, Steel Wing)

When I got Pidgey at the adoption place, it was like considered "mutated" kinda. They said that when it was born, it had Faint Attack and when it was angry it was like insanely destructive and like even had a "dark side" so it was cool.

Anyway, I was wondering if I could continue training that one.

Lady Vulpix
13th April 2003, 07:44 AM
Yes, you can.
Amy and M_K, I'll read your stories tomorrow.

13th April 2003, 04:41 PM
Lune the male Eevee LV5 vs. Kristyn’s female Igglybuff LV10

“Lune, just be careful!” I told him. I found out later that in battle, he didn’t need any advice at all. He had the greatest battle sense of the lot, even more so than I ever imagined. He was so good at it that he could probably beat Switchblade, or at least put up a ferocious fight. He never limited himself to anything; if he didn’t have many options, he made them.

“Oh, yeah,” Kristyn commented, “I forgot that you don’t tell your pokémon what to do. How strange. Makes it a little harder to predict, but we’ll be fine, right, Igglybuff? Go! Icy Wind attack!”

One thing about Kristyn… She always packed her pokémon full of powerful TMs, because she was rich and could afford it. I was worried about how Lune would cope against such an obvious disadvantage; he didn’t know very many moves, and that Igglybuff probably knew every single TM that Kristyn could have access to. How could Lune fight against something with such a wide arsenal of attacks when he in the first place had also battled less?

But my concern was unnecessary. Lune darted instantly into the lee of a giant stone head, moving whenever the Igglybuff tried to come at him at a different angle. The chill winds never got to him, no matter how many times the Igglybuff tried. She was getting observably frustrated, and her cheeks were flushed a bright scarlet with breathlessness and embarrassment.

“Enough, Igglybuff,” Kristyn said, seeing that her approach was not working, “Catch him off guard with a Sing, followed by a Dream Eater attack!”

I ground my teeth. Dream Eater was a terrible business, powerful and yet nearly unstoppable if the victim was asleep. It drained large amounts from the sleeping unfortunate, and yet was so subtle that it wouldn’t wake the pokémon up any faster. If Lune got caught in that trap, he would be in serious trouble. He didn’t have Protect or any moves that would save him, not even the mediocre Sleep Talk or Snore that would allow him to do at least something in his sleep. What could he do?

The Igglybuff’s enchanting melody floated softly through the air, like a gentle, slow-moving river, relaxing every muscle in my body… I felt my eyelids drooping, and smiled stupidly, about to fall into the sweet realm of slumber… And I would have, had Kristyn not suddenly stuffed special earplugs on me and shook me vigorously to wake me up. I could still hear everything, but somehow the Igglybuff’s singing didn’t have the same hypnotic effect on me as it did before.

“Luckily I had a spare,” she said. “These were very expensive, since I had them custom made, but I knew it was worth it to get another pair for the opposing trainers that I battled. I don’t really know how Igglybuff and I could battle otherwise, if the other trainer always fell asleep.”

I grinned, but it quickly turned into a worried frown. Lune didn’t have any earplugs. How could he avoid succumbing to such a tantalizing melody? Again, I found myself paranoid over nothing. When I looked over to the field, I could still see the Igglybuff singing… But she wasn’t having any success. Lune was wide-awake, and then I realized why. As soon as he heard the beginnings of the song, he had snapped into immediate action, rolling about on the ground and plugging his ears temporarily with dirt, flowers, blades of grass, and anything else that would help. The melody, therefore, became muffled and slightly distorted; and that bought him enough time to rise, charge into the singing Igglybuff headfirst, and shatter her melody altogether. He shook himself calmly, ridding his ears of the assorted motley. Kristyn didn’t look very pleased.

“Your Eevee is smart. I don’t believe he found a way around Sing spontaneously like that! But we’re not through yet. Igglybuff, use Sunny Day, then blind the Eevee with Flash, and while he’s disoriented, get him good with a big Fire Blast!” she yelled.

I grimaced. More TMs… And even an HM. I had never managed to get my hands on one of those. But Lune was not deaf; he heard every command that Kristyn gave to his opponent, and therefore had plenty of time to prepare.

The Igglybuff didn’t notice this, however; she turned her head to the sky, oblivious of Lune’s knowledge. While the Igglybuff called upon the sun, gently pushing away the clouds in the sky, Lune found a large, sweet-smelling flower, fitted it on his head so that it resembled a cap with shade at the front, and curled the flower’s leaves around his ears so the cap wouldn’t fall off so easily.

After that, Lune continually shot quick glances at the Igglybuff, looking at and immediately away from her, as if waiting for something. To be specific, he was waiting for the exact moment when he would see the Igglybuff’s body glow, after which the brilliant, blinding Flash would follow. Lune finally caught a glimpse of what he was waiting to see, and, looking immediately away, he shut his eyes and placed his two forepaws over his face to protect himself from the light.

“WHAT?” Kristyn yelled, shaken. “How did he know? How…”

I shook my head I disbelief. “Lune… You weren’t kidding when you told me you would be fine, were you?” I whispered to myself.

Kristyn began to lose her composure. “Never mind that, Igglybuff. NOW! FIRE BLAST! FIRE BLAST UNTIL HE FAINTS!”

Lune’s ears pricked up. He could hear the roar of the flames that approached him, and could smell the pungent scent of the burning flowers that withered under the wrath of the scorching kanji… The flower on his head felt drier, as if all of its vitality had been suddenly sucked out by the hungry fire, with nothing left behind. Lune could feel the heat approaching him, and he knew it was time to move. He had waited long enough. The light from the Flash had to have faded by then. Lune dashed off, opening his eyes cautiously, and took cover behind the same statue that he had used before.

In this way he avoided the first flaming kanji, which burned down everything in its path, leaving only a desolate trail of scorched earth behind, until the fire eventually subsided. The burnt remnants looked awkward in the midst of the beautiful spring growth, but there was more to come. Again and again, the Igglybuff spouted this kind of flame, never ceasing to go on relentless offense. It was only after she had exhaled the frightful burning kanji three more times that Kristyn beckoned for her to stop.

The Igglybuff, although packed with powerful TM knowledge and level training, had almost no battle sense whatsoever. She knew only how to take commands from her trainer willingly, with unconditional obedience. It did not occur to her that, with Lune using the same rock head as a shelter over and over again, there could be anything wrong with her trainer’s constantly failing strategy. She had not the wit to figure out that she could do anything in a different way than her trainer suggested. Kristyn had told her to use Fire Blast until Lune fainted, so that was exactly what she tried to do, until her trainer told her to stop.

By now, Kristyn could not hide her frustration and envy. She wanted a pokémon like Lune, who had a remarkably creative battle sense and could adapt to difficult situations. She had always hoped for a strong Wigglytuff, for that was her favorite pokémon, but when she had gotten this Igglybuff, she had immediately realized that it would be tough to accomplish. She knew that her Igglybuff was slow to learn in battle, but she did not want to abandon the poor thing just because the Igglybuff didn’t have much battle sense. Kristyn had done all she could to help her Igglybuff grow stronger, but she knew now that it was definitely not enough. She gave up right then and there, voicing commands in a dispirited manner.

“Igglybuff, use Psychic to lift Lune up really high into the air and drop him,” she said.

The tired Igglybuff tried to concentrate, but Lune was making it as difficult as possible. He ran around her in circles, kicking up dirt, broken grass, flowers, and pollen of all sorts to irritate her. The poor Igglybuff, not knowing what to do, followed his progress wildly with her eyes; she grew dizzy rather soon, and it was obvious that she could not do what her trainer asked. The Igglybuff was nearly driven to tears; she hated disappointing the trainer that loved her so much.

Kristyn noticed this, and, with a softened voice, comforted her pokémon, telling her, “Igglybuff, I know you’re trying your best, and that’s all that matters. You’re tired, but we have one awesome trick up our sleeves. Igglybuff, use your Fighting type Hidden Power! I know you can win if you do that!”

I started up in surprise when I heard this. How lucky for the Igglybuff to have a Fighting type Hidden Power for a situation like this! Lune, being a Normal type, would suffer the most from the Fighting element, and here was the Igglybuff with the privilege of having a Hidden Power of that type! Switchblade had a Fighting type Hidden Power, too, but when I compared him to the battle-weak Igglybuff, I could not really understand the connection. What was it that determined a pokémon’s Hidden Power type? It wasn’t their ability in battle.

Meanwhile, the Igglybuff was charging energy into masses around her, with the light of determination in her eyes. She did not want to fail her trainer, and she would do anything till the end to achieve victory, even if it meant pushing her body past its furthest limits. When I looked at her, I finally realized what it was that she shared with Switchblade: his great courage and boundless determination, and his willingness to give up everything he had in order to achieve his ultimate goals. I felt respectful admiration for the Igglybuff then, and her iron will.

Lune leapt at the Igglybuff with open jaws and clamped down upon her as she let energy flow from her body. If he was trying to stop her altogether, it did not work, for she did not wish to give up; but he interrupted her progress, and she lost valuable strength. It was a while before she was even ready to attack again.

Kristyn screamed with horror. “What was that? An Eevee of that level can’t learn Bite!”

Lune eyed her calmly, then looked at me also requiring an explanation. He appeared amused. It’s very simple. All I had to do was open my mouth and sink my teeth into her flesh. Just because I don’t know the move Bite does not mean that I am not capable of performing that basic action. It is true that I haven’t found out yet how to work in the Dark energy involved in the actual move Bite, but there is no rule stating that I cannot perform a simple action with my jaws. I can chew my food, right?

I beamed at Lune, finally understanding the limits to his battling prowess – there were none. Lune would not allow any to exist.

By this time, the Igglybuff was almost ready to launch her attack, and by the look on Lune’s face, there would be a lot of pain involved if she managed to succeed. As the Igglybuff made the final preparations to strike, Lune collected energy of his own into the form of a throbbing ethereal ball, calling the fleeting shadows in the darkness to his aid. They came, and together formed that dark, rippling mass, the sphere that grew and trembled at his paw. He launched this before the Igglybuff began her assault, and it went sailing upwards into the air.

“What is your Eevee doing?” Kristyn asked, surprised. “Even my Igglybuff knows her type charts. She knows that Ghost type attacks don’t affect Normal type pokémon. She’s got much better aim, too.”

Lune turned around to face Kristyn, and he gave her the answer. Do you remember that damaged rock statue that your Igglybuff kept attacking earlier? She’s standing right under it.

At that instant, Lune’s seemingly off-course Shadow Ball struck its target and exploded, shattering the final foundations of its intended target. The giant nose cracked away as stone crumbled under it, and it fell, along with the debris, heading directly for the unsuspecting Igglybuff below… Kristyn’s eyes widened, and, without another word, she immediately recalled her precious pokémon, rescuing the Igglybuff from destruction.

“I forfeit,” she told me. “Your Eevee is remarkably strong. I can’t imagine how invincible he will become as he grows further.” Kristyn fumbled about in her handbag, then pulled out the pretty foil-wrapped egg that she showed me earlier. “Here,” she said, “This is for you. I want you to have it.”

“Thanks,” I said. “Hey, Lune, would you like this?”

It’s chocolate. That's a no-brainer, he answered, smiling as he accepted the candy egg.

Lune won!
Lune grew to LV7!

13th April 2003, 11:10 PM


We had finally gotten to the lodge. It took a while to walk in that snow to get here. I walked over to the fire place and sat down on the couch. Sneasel got down and started to warm up a little. I had noticed that he didn’t the cold temperatures like other ice pokemon. It was very strange to me. I sat back on the couch and started to rest before the real race started. It was going to be long and tough. It wasn’t long until I drifted off to sleep. I dreamed about Sneasel winning that race, Him beating all the others. It was a very close race but Sneasel had beaten them all…

Surrender’s POV:

I saw Matt squirming on the couch. I moved away from the fire to go see what he was doing. I got up there to see that Matt was sleeping. I giggled at him. He must have been real tired to conk out like that. I got up on the back of the couch. I was going to scare him. When I got on the back, I got ready to jump on top of his head. I wiggled, and then I jumped! I landed on top of his head. Matt jumped in fright and started to run around the room trying to get me off. I laughed and jumped off myself. He looked over towards me to see that it was me. He smiled and walked over towards me and picked me up. I laughed as he picked me up into the air. Then something happened. A faint beeping sound was heard on Matt’s wrist. He looked down at it. “NO!” he yelled. He put me down and ran back to the Pokemon Center. I heard him yell again. He ran back over to where I was and ran back down the hallway to the Pokemon Center. He put me on the counter for me to be healed, checked, etc. When all that was done, he put me in my pokeball and we ran off towards some unknown place…

I couldn’t believe it!! It was past time to get to the race! I had to run fast. I was going as fast I could when my knee went out. I fell down into the snow in pain. I looked up towards the racing arena. I really hoped I could get there in time. I got up slowly and tried to stand on the leg that my knee went out on. I fell back down into the snow. It seemed that my knee joint had broken or something. I frowned. I didn’t know how I was going to get to the race now. Then it came to me.

“GO Stantler!” I yelled. Stantler’s pokeball landed on the snow, and Stantler appeared.

“Stantler… can you get us to the race really fast….” I said in pain.

“Stttttannnnnnnnnnnnntttttttttt,” Stantler said.

“I guess that’s a yes” I said trying to laugh.

Stantler bent down so I could crawl on to her back. When I had gotten on her back, she waited for me to get situated, and then she started to run as fast as she could to get to the race before the deadline was over. I could hear the announcer in the distance.

”If competitor Matt doesn’t get here soon he will be disqualified!”

“Stantler, get there quick” I said.

Stantler started to run faster. Soon, we were finally at the race. Stantler ran over to the judge. The judge looked at me blankly.

“Umm… why are you riding on your Stantler to get here?” He asked.

“Well...” I said. “The joint in my knee is obviously broken, and I couldn’t run over here” I finished.

“Oh, dear me, you need to get to the hospital as quick as possible” He said.

“NO! I want to watch my Sneasel race! I don’t care about my knee!” I yelled.

“OH, you’re racing!! What is your name sir?” He asked.

“I’m Matt and this…” I said. I took out my pokeball and tossed it on the ground. Sneasel appeared right beside me. “… is my Sneasel” I said.

“OH, so you’re Matt! We have been waiting on you so we can start the race” He said.

“Oh, heh, sorry about that” I said.

“Well we can make a seat for you so you can put your leg up if you wish” He said.

“That would be great” I said.

He walked over and got a chair and another chair so I could put my leg up on it. I sat down on the chair and waited for the race to start. Sneasel went up to the starting line. Then a Swinub came up beside him. Sneasel looked over towards me and waved his arms at me. I smiled at Sneasel as I saw him about to start a race that was going to be very hard for him.

Surrender’s POV:

I was ready to race. I smiled at Swinub. Swinub didn’t look too happy that he was racing today. I guess he was afraid of me. I laughed lightly. I heard the announcer about to start the race.

“OK racers get ready to race!” He yelled. “READY – SET – GO!” He yelled.

Sneasel VS Swinub

I pushed off of the snow and started to run. I had gotten a lot of exercise in the practice race. Swinub was left behind me, but it was coming up fast! I didn’t want to waste all my strength just on the first lap, but I didn’t want Swinub to get in front of me. Soon, Swinub did get in front of me. I sighed as I saw him slide by me. Swinub was turning the corner to get to the second half of this lap. I was just in the middle. I started to run faster than before. Maybe, I would be able to get in front of him this way, but I still didn’t get in front of him. I was turning the corner to get to the second long stretch. Then I noticed something. Swinub wasn’t too far ahead of me. I smirked and started to run faster. Soon, I had passed him and continued to run for the finish line. I passed the line, and I head the announcer again.

“OH, Sneasel is on Lap 2 while Swinub is lagging behind on Lap 1!!” He said.

I smiled. I didn’t want to get to arrogant about my lead. I looked over towards Matt who was watching the screen just above me. I looked ahead to continue the race. I could hear noises behind me. It was Swinub! I had to get away from him. I kicked up the speed to get away, but Swinub was still right behind me. Swinub passed me with a smile on his face. I frowned and started to go faster. Swinub was getting angry. He stopped and started to kick snow in my face. I put my claws in front of my face and started to run on. Since Swinub had stopped, I got to run right by him. I laughed as I turned the corner to get to the second long stretch. Soon, I passed the finish line again, still in the lead.

“Wow, what another amazing lap made by Sneasel” The announcer said.

I smiled. This was turning out to be a good race. I was already on lap three while Swinub was still on lap two. I decided to slow down a little so I wouldn’t waste all my energy just on this lap. I looked behind me to see Swinub coming at me again.

“Don’t think you can get away from me” Swinub said. “I will win this race and claim my title” He continued.

“I will win, you will not!” I yelled back at him.

I started to run faster now. I passed the corner and around to the second stretch. Swinub was really lagging behind now. I guess that practice race that I ran was paying off. I passed the finish line again. The announcer was saying the same thing as before. I was really getting tired of him.

I kept running, not even stopping for a breath. I didn’t want Swinub to catch up with me. I turned the corner to the longer stretch. Then, I ran into something. It was a big pile of snow. It seems that Swinub had set it for me. I fell down into the snow and got back up, but by the time I had gotten up, Swinub had already passed me. I frowned and started to run faster. That little “stop” gave me a boost of energy. I ran past Swinub and went for the line. I passed it and didn’t even stop to listen to what lap I was on.

“Weeooo” I said passing the line.

Swinub was not far behind me. This was going to be a very close race. I went around the corner again, this time avoiding the big pile of snow that I ran into before. I laughed at that pile of snow and continued running. Then I heard something. Swinub was yelling because he had ran into the snow himself. I started to laugh at him. Swinub was in there pretty deep.

“I guess he gets what he deserves for cheating” I said.

I continued to run, and ran past the line again. I guess I was on lap 5 now. That meant that I was finally half-way done. I smiled and ran some more. I turned the corner to see Swinub still in the snow. I was quite worried about him. I walked over to the snow ball. I poked his back. He started to quiver. I pulled him out of the snow. He was almost frozen! I gasped. My opponent was frozen and the race was only half-way done. I threw him on the ground to try to break the ice. Luckily, the ice did break. Swinub got up and looked around. He saw me standing beside him.

“Um… you freed me from the ice?” He asked.

“Yes, I did” I said.

“Wow, I thought you were bad, but now I know that you are very nice” He said.

“Heh, everyone thinks I’m mean” I said.

“They must be stupid or something” Swinub said.

“Well, not really” I said.

“Are we going to finish this race” He asked.

“Ok” I said.

We got into running position, and we took off. I was ahead of Swinub again. It wasn’t long until I passed the line again. I was now on lap six!!! Swinub passed the line again, but he was only on lap five. I giggled a bit and ran some more. All this running was very boring and tiring. But, I really wanted to win. I kept running. Soon, I passed the line again. This time I was on lap seven! Swinub was on lap six, but he was coming up on lap seven.

I was getting really tired now. I had been running for a long time. I looked over towards Matt. He was cheering me on. Somehow this cheering gave me the strength to go on. I laughed at Matt and continued to run. Soon, I passed the same corner again. The snow had fallen to the ground and wasn’t there anymore. I smiled at the thought that I had helped Swinub but frowned at the fact that he was going to lose. Even though he was coming up, he had wasted a lot of time in that snow. I passed the line again!! Now I was on lap eight!!

I grinned. This was a great race. I surely hoped that I would still win. Then I figured that I was being too arrogant. I stopped smiling and started to think about the race and the fact that I might be able to win it. Then, something happened. Swinub came up behind me and passed me!! I gasped and started to run faster. Swinub wasn’t going to win this race that easily. I passed Swinub, but he just passed me again. It was like that until we passed the line again. We were both on lap nine! It was just one more lap to go.

We were running right beside each other trying to get a break so we could run in front. Swinub was running into me trying to knock me into the snow. I frowned and started to run faster. I got ahead of him and turned the corner very sharp. I almost lost me balance doing that, and Swinub was right on my heels, too. I turned the next corner to get to the long stretch. Swinub was right beside me again. I didn’t want to cheat and hit him back like he had been trying to do to me the whole race. I gasped for air as I started to run faster than I had ever before. I ran past Swinub and past the line. Finally, it was lap ten! The last lap!

I was still running very fast. All this fast running was making me very tired. I ignored the pain and continued to run. I didn’t want to lose this race now. I looked over towards Matt. He had sat up to watch me run the final lap.

“YEAH, GO SURRENDER!!” He yelled.

I smiled at Matt and ran some more. I turned the corner and ran on to the final stretch! I started to run faster. Swinub was coming up behind me again. I started to run even faster. Finally, I passed the finish line!! I could hear Swinub yelling as he passed the line last. I stopped running and flopped into the snow. Matt got up out of his chair and hobbled over towards me. He picked me up out of the snow and hugged me.

“You did great!” He said.

I smiled at him. I couldn’t believe he liked me that much. My last trainer didn’t like me that much… I’m glad that I found Matt…

“Now, I will announce the winner of the race” The announcer said.

“The winner is….. Surrender, the male Sneasel!” He said.

“Congrats” He continued.


This was the best, and first, race ever!

Sneasel grew to level 9

Lady Vulpix
15th April 2003, 03:05 PM
Nice race, MK! Take 8 stamps! ¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢
Amy, your story was great! :)
Karin, your battle was excellent! I was planning to give you 7 stamps, but I'm giving you 6 and use the other one to pay for the restoration of the historical monument Lune damaged. You should teach your pokemon to be more careful. (Note this is just for the battle, as the intro had been rated before).¢¢¢¢¢¢
Matt, you can have 7 stamps. Nice job! ¢¢¢¢¢¢¢

21st April 2003, 08:50 AM
Hi. This is my first time doing this so please don't get upset if I mess it up. I just want to Train both my Wurmple from the Pokezoo Adoption Center and Snubby, my new Swinub. I am trying my best to understand everything, so I'll split up our adventure into parts.
-----------------Part 1: Wurmple Sees A Magma Grunt-------------------
It was a normal day for me and my Pokemon, Wurmple and Snubby. We were happily playing with our ball when it rolled into the woods. We went after it and split up in order to find faster. Just then Wurmple spotted something.

Wurmple's POV
It was a Magma Grunt and boy did he ever seem angry. He told me to tell Pokemon Geek and Snubby that if we want to stay together forever, we'd have to challenge him in the Winter Games Pokemon battle. I had no choice but to agree.

Snubby's POV
When Wurmple told Pokemon Geek and me about the challenge. I was shocked. I never was in a battle before. My Master reassured me and told me that as long as I believed in myself, I can do anything. Wurmple never battled either and she seemed ready. She may have been that way because she already believed in herself or that she was getting ready to evolve.

Lady Vulpix
21st April 2003, 09:40 AM
Welcome to the Battle Range, pokemongeek!
Before you post a battle, I think you should check the current scenario first. It's the one about Easter. You ca find a link to it on the rules post (first post on this topic). Whenever the scenario changes, that link is updated. Also, make sure you read all the rules. That could prevent problems in the future, like posting invalid battles and having to write them all over again.
I hope you enjoy this game. :)

21st April 2003, 11:06 AM
Wurmple's at Lv 7 and Snubby at Lv 5
----------------------Wurmple's Easter Surprise----------------------------
It was Easter morning and Snubby my Swinub and Wurmple were happily enjoying the candy I gave them when a Pichu appeared. It looked at the chocolate and jelly beans and slowly crept up to my Pokemon. It seemed to be hungry and Wurmple offered it an apple from her basket when it snatched the basket and ran off! Wurmple then became quite upset and ran after it.
"Snubby!" I shouted. "Follow Wurmple! She may get hurt if she tries to get her treats alone!"
We ran after Wurmple and Pichu until we reached a dead end in the forrest. Wurmple demanded that the Pichu should give back her candy and it refused to listen. Wurmple then wanted to battle for her Easter treats.
"Are you sure?" I asked. "It looks strong and you never battled before."
But Wurmple was still determined to get her candy back.
"Okay then," I sighed as I respected Wurmple's decision. "Try and Tackle Pichu for your Easter basket."
Wurmple used a tackle but Pichu was quicker and got out of the way. It then used a Thundershock attack. Wurmple was hurt but she still wanted her candy back.
"Wurmple!" I commanded. "Try your String Shot!"
She then spit out a string shot and Pichu was caught and coyuld no longer move as quickly as it did before. Wurmple then did another tackle causing Pichu to go flying into the air and landed high in the branches of a tree. It was dazed completely and could no longer fight over the candy. Just then Wurmple started to glow and began to evolve. It became a Silcoon! I was so happy for my new Silcoon because I knew that as a Wurmple, my Pokemon had had a desire to become a Beautifly. It was one step closer to reaching its dream.
Wurmple is now at level 8!

Lady Vulpix
21st April 2003, 11:32 AM
Will you please tell me how your Wurmple got to level 7? She was level 5 last time I saw her.

21st April 2003, 01:37 PM
I thought she was at lv 7 when I got her but she did evolve I guess earlier than expected just like Ash's Caterpie.

Lady Vulpix
21st April 2003, 02:45 PM
What level was Ash's Caterpie when he evolved?
Anyway, you can have 2 battles, so if your Wurmple battles 2 Pichus instead of 1, she'll grow to level 7 and evolve.
Will you fix your battle, please?

22nd April 2003, 06:11 AM
As Lady Vulpix Pointed Out, I Made A Mistake So Instead Of One Pichu Taking Wurmple's Easter Candy, I'll Replace It With Two Pichus And Silcoon Will Be At Lv 7 Instead Of Lv 8.

AntiAsh Superstar
28th April 2003, 10:49 AM
Hehe, I finally finished me story for this scenario. Excuse the sudden appearances in Ulthuan of people who may be familiar to you, but how could I leave out what has the potential to be the greatest comedy double act I've ever had the good fortune to write about? :D

So that was it, then. Finally the Dragon Games were over, and finally we could return to something approaching normality. It had been a bittersweet time to say the least. Although Katnip had tried his best, vanquishing a powerful Machamp in the process, there had been even more proficient fighters than him involved in the tournament. Still, despite the injuries the Raticate had sustained, he was more than happy with the third place we had managed to achieve. And if my pokémon were happy, why, so was I. And yet the doubts still lingered within the furthest recesses of my mind. Had it really been worth it? If you had asked Katnip he would have replied to the positive, but me, I wasn’t so sure. The trials had been immense. In fact they had put the Raticate out of action in the short term. Even now he was quite heavily bandaged, the injuries sustained during battle still needing all the support they could obtain. No, there had been precious little gained from the whole exercise, at least to my mind. Just a great deal of hassle. Then again, wasn’t that basically the story of my life? Complication after complication.
“Thinking of complications...” Currently I was sat at my computer, trying somehow to make sense of life through fiction, as was my wont. Of course it was sometimes complex, sometimes rambling, and always too unplanned to be worthy of publication, but what did that matter? It was only meant for an audience of one anyway. If anyone else appreciated my work that was merely an unexpected bonus. “It’s probably time for me to go in and see how the others are doing.” With well-practised speed I saved my work for the day and made to head out of my cluttered bedroom, navigating the papers strewn about the floor with relative ease. Yes, complications seemed to rule my life. And lately one of the biggest complications of all had seemed to land right upon my doorstep. I couldn’t put it off any longer. I would have to rearrange things. To make room for the new arrival.

“I still don’t get it.” Milliardo stared at the round, hard, shiny object in front of him. “I always thought dragons were supposed to be wise, intelligent creatures. Please explain how the **** you managed to find one willing to breed with BECKS, of all pokémon? Umm, no offense, Pearl.”
“None taken, I’m too used to you by now to care.” It had been Pearl’s idea to begin with. She had seen how disappointed I was to have to decline to accept the prize offered at the Dragon Games. I had said earlier that I wasn’t willing to take on another Meowth, and I had meant it. But it had still been agonising to have to refuse the little pokémon. So my team had hatched a plan to present me with an alternative prize of their own. It had required the assistance of Tsuyoi’s prodigious shape shifting powers, of course, plus assistance from Beckham in the form of what Kasumi was later to jealously dub ‘the most selfless act of having way too much fun for your own good I’ve even known’. Yet a willing trainer had been found, and the team triumphantly presented me with the object of their current discussions, a small yet perfectly formed Dratini egg.
“Well I’m glad, because I’m not about to change any time soon.” The Umbreon studied the egg for a little while longer, nested as it was in a cardboard box insulated with various scraps of cloth. A makeshift incubator if ever there was one, but it seemed to be quite effective. “Okay, next question. Do any of you have any idea what a dragon that’s been sired by a total lunatic is liable to turn out like?”
“Hey, I’m not a total lunatic!” Beckham protested. “I’m just half of one. The other half of me is something else, probably alcohol given the amount of times I’ve raided Ade’s drinks cabinet. Still, that’s not exactly stopped me before, has it?”
“No, I’m really impressed by that, actually.” Kasumi grinned brightly. “What I’d have given to be that Dratini you bred with!”
“Can I just point out that whilst a Dratini can just lay an egg and get it over with, you, Sumi, would be lumbered with puppies in your belly for months should your schemes come to fruition.” Pearl rolled her eyes. As much as she thought of the Growlithe as a little sister, there were times when Kasumi was totally impossible!
“Which is why I’m very careful and only stalk pokémon who can’t actually breed with me.” Kasumi stuck her tongue out before returning to Beckham. “So whaddya say, Becks? I’ll even find you some more drinks as your reward!” Fortunately for Beckham, the Wartortle was saved from having to make the hardest decision of his life by my sudden entrance into the room, freshly relaxed from my earlier efforts at literature.
“Yo, dude.” Katnip seemed to be the first one to actually notice my presence. Either that or he was trying to turn the tide of conversation away from the suspect direction that Kasumi was taking it. “Been havin’ a good time in there?” The Raticate hopped off the sofa to go over to me, then instantly regretted it as he landed on a badly sprained ankle.
“Will you watch it, Katnip?” Although the Raticate was taking things exceptionally well for such a restless creature, he did tend to have these moments where he simply forgot all about his injuries. The results were inevitably a sudden wince and a few choice obscenities muttered under his breath. “You’re still not properly healed, you know!”
“So I noticed.” Katnip reluctantly scrabbled back onto the sofa again, deciding that maybe remaining stationary had its benefits after all.
“Anyway, what’s going on here? That egg isn’t going to hatch any quicker if everyone watches it, you know!”
“I know that, we were just talking about it, that’s all,” Pearl offered.
“Again?” Ever since the egg had been brought into the house a few days ago, the rest of my team had been talking about little else. Everyone seemed to have an opinion on what the consequences of its existence were going to be. From Milliardo’s mean-spirited comments as to its parentage to Kirei loudly declaring that she was going to be the baby’s embarrassingly trendy aunt, it was as if all other topics of conversation had been all but forgotten. Still, I could forgive my pokémon their excitement. Hell, I was pretty excited about it too. “Well, I suppose it IS predicted to hatch today, right?”
“So the people at the breeding centre said.” Tsuyoi yawned from his position flopped upon the couch. He seemed to be the only one who cared little for recent events. But then again, wasn’t being excited too out of character for one such as he, always firmly in control of life? “And to be honest that’s the impression I’m getting from the life energies inside that little bundle. I’d say ‘any time now’ would be a fair estimation of how long you’ll all have to wait.”
“Well, I’m glad to hear that, but...” My concentration was abruptly broken by a loud and persistent ringing from the telephone in the hallway. Only a few people ever bothered to call me, especially on my home number, and the urgency of the ringing was such that it was as if the telephone wanted me to know that this particular call wasn’t just one of the random telesales pitches that dogged any person unlucky enough to own a phone. “Oh, forget it. If it’s that close to hatching then will you guys just yell if something happens? I’d better go sort that out.” So saying, I pushed my way into the hall and lifted the cold black receiver, effectively silencing the din. “Hello?”
“Hi, Ade! I hope I’m not ringing at a bad time or anything!” Gabi. Of course. I had known who it was going to be even before I lifted the receiver.
“No, no, sorry if I sounded a little sharp.” I sighed, trying to soften my tone. Which was a hard enough task in itself. I was too on edge lately. Maybe I needed to take a little time off. “It’s just been one thing after another lately. And there’s a dragon about to hatch in the lounge, I can’t say waiting for that has been doing anything for my mood.”
“Oh, I heard that you had finally acquired a Dratini egg, congratulations!”
“Thanks. It’s not hatched yet, but I’ve been told it could do at any time, which is why I’m a little edgy at the minute.” A pause. “Anyway, what were you calling about?”
“A few things, actually, but I get the feeling that now isn’t the best time to talk about them. Maybe we could meet up later on today and I can explain? I’ll be out for most of the day but it wouldn’t be hard to squeeze in half an hour to talk. Would about 4pm be okay for you? I can afford to take a little time out to drop by.”
“Of course, that sounds fine with me. I never really have anything planned anyway. This must be really important for you to need to meet up with me, I know how busy you are!”
“Well, you’ll see later. I’ve got a favour to ask of you and I need to ask it in person.”
“Well...” A sudden excited yelling from the lounge broke my concentration in an instant, as if the entire team had began to talk in unison. Something had happened whilst I was on the phone. I could just feel it. “Look, I’m sorry, Gabi, I’ve really got to go now, something’s come up. I’ll see you later, just turn up when you’re ready and then we can talk, okay?”
“Certainly, I understand. You’d better go, they’re making quite a noise back there, aren’t they?” This was understatement of the year! No wonder Gabi could hear the din even over the phone line! “I’ll come over at some point in the afternoon, okay?”
“Yeah, fine. I’ll see you then.” And without waiting for an answer, I hung up, hoping that Gabi would understand my lack of manners in this situation. I couldn’t leave this any longer, that small part of my brain responsible for curiosity finally going into overdrive. Of course I knew what was going on really. It was typical of my luck that such things were happening when I was out of the room, but there was nothing that could be done about it now. I would just have to hurry and do what I could. If, of course, my team hadn’t already taken the initiative. And based on past form, the chances were that such a thing had already happened. The question was what kind of chaos would greet me when I returned to the lounge?

“Aww, isn’t it cuute?”
“If you like that sort of thing. Personally I don’t see what all the fuss is about. It’s just an oversized worm.”
“Gee, Scratchy, not even I’d be that mean. What’s wrong, don’t you like kids?”
“Well, I’ll make sure to remember that next time you’re pissing me off, we can lock you in a maternity ward or something.”
“Guys, can we stop fighting for ten seconds? Please?” I was taking far too long making my call for Pearl’s liking, and the way she saw things somebody had to take some kind of control! She took a few faltering steps towards the head now poking out amidst the box of rags in the corner of the room. “And stop crowding it, Kirei. You don’t have to get that close, you know!”
“But it’s so cute!” Despite the urge to stare further, the Espeon reluctantly followed orders and gave the baby Dratini a little space, allowing Pearl to take further control of the situation.
“Okay...” Pearl’s mind went into overdrive. What was supposed to happen next? She felt that she should say something, but what? And what were they supposed to do with regards to feeding the baby? Not for the first time she wished that I would hurry up and provide some assistance. But then again, would I have had any more of an idea as to what to do? “Hello there! It’s your Auntie Pearl! Aren’t you a sweetheart?”
“Oh my God. Do any of you have even the slightest clue as to what you’re doing? If Kirei’s not giving the poor thing heart attacks by shoving her face right into it’s line of vision, Pearl’s giving us lessons in sickeningly sweet baby-talk.” Pandora had seen quite enough of this spectacle, and began to roughly barge her way towards the Dratini. “It’s simple. He’s just hatched. Do you know what the first thing to do in this situation is? No, I don’t suppose you do, do you?” By now Pandora had reached the box, and the instant her eyes landed upon the Dratini her expression and tone softened. “Aww, ignore them, baby, they don’t have a clue, do they? I bet you must be starving. Come on, come to me, I’ll help you. Yes, that’s it. Good boy!” There was something in Pandora’s manner that seemed to attract the baby towards her, and sure enough the little dragon came slithering out of its egg.
“Umm... Pandora... I really hate to be a pedant, but are you going to do what I think you’re going to do?” Milliardo raised a figurative eyebrow in response to the scene before him. This was getting more surreal by the minute! “Because, you know, I’m not exactly the world’s greatest expert on nutrition and all, but are we quite sure that Houndour milk is quite the right... formula for a dragon?”
“No. But I’d like to see anyone else come up with a better plan, and it’s better than nothing. Now would you just shut up, unless you plan on saying something that HADN’T already crossed my mind?” Satisfied that her boyfriend was silenced for now, the Houndour turned her attentions back to the baby Dratini, gently coaxing it to where it could safely suckle. Of course Milliardo was right, a dragon couldn’t exist forever on sustenance designed for puppies, but in Pandora’s mind it was better than nothing. And besides, who else was going to come up with a better idea?
“I’ve seen some odd sights in my time...” The sight greeting me upon my return ranked as one of the most surreal scenarios I had witnessed all year. It was common knowledge that for all her prickly, volatile attitude, Pandora had always possessed something of a maternal streak, but to see her already mothering the baby in this manner wasn’t something that I had necessarily been expecting. “Well, good on you, Pandora. I’m glad somebody knows what they’re doing with infants!”
“I assume that means I’m being asked to play the surrogate mother now?” Pandora tried her best to look weary, but yet again those eyes spoiled the mood. She seemed more pleased than anything by the whole prospect, craning her head down to lay a tender kiss upon the hungry Dratini’s head. “I can deal with that, I suppose. If I have to. But you’re going to have to name him, you know, I’m crap at that kind of thing. Naming isn’t a talent of mine.”
“It’s a good thing I already thought about that. If it was a girl I was going to call it Yuri, but you said ‘him’ didn’t you?”
“Yes she did, this means it’s not a girl. Even you can work that one out, Ade!” Evidently Milliardo hadn’t been totally silenced after all! “So what name did you have in mind for a boy, then?”
“I thought Marius would be a nice name,” I replied, appraising the little Dratini as it nestled up against Pandora’s belly. Just one look into its eyes revealed a creature with the potential to become quite the intellect. Yes, Marius seemed to fit nicely. “Mind if I interrupt?” I bent down to pet the little creature as it fed. The Dratini was too busy to pay me much attention as I ran my fingers along its leathery skin. The sensation was quite unlike anything I had ever experienced, and to try and describe the texture of a dragon’s skin would have been futile. It wasn’t quite reptilian, yet neither was it quite like the flesh of mammals. The best parallel would have been to say that it seemed to possess the most admirable qualities of both, plus a slight velvet sheen that defied explanation. “You’re a cute one, Marius.”
“That he is.” Pearl trotted over to my side, to examine the baby for herself. “By the way, Ade, do you mind if I ask what that call was all about?”
“It was Gabi, she wanted to come over later on today. Apparently she’s got something she needs to talk to me about in person.” A slight frown appeared on my face as I tried to consider what it was that could possibly warrant this visit. For the most part any business we had to discuss took place via phone calls or through the computer! “Don’t ask me what, though. I haven’t a clue.”
“Hey, do you think she’ll be bringing her team over as well?” Beckham stopped staring at his biological son for long enough to join in the current conversation. “You know, I kind of miss playing with Caledor, it’s been ages since the Eevee House was open last. I wonder what happened to that, anyway? Do you think it’s gone the way of everything in Ade’s hometown and been converted into either a sickeningly trendy bar or an overpriced clothes shop?”
“Man, I hope not!” Kirei shuddered. “Trendy is bad. Maybe it’s been taken away by the faeries or something. They’re an unpredictable bunch. Didn’t you know?”
“It’s probably just being redecorated or something like that. No faeries or anything ridiculous like that.” I sighed, resigning myself to the fact that I would probably never find out the answers to my questions on my own. “And Gabi didn’t say anything about bringing any of her pokémon, but you never know what’ll happen. Maybe she will and you can all have a big party to celebrate Marius’ birth or something whilst we talk things over.”
“You mean it?” Beckham’s eyes lit up. “Can we? Can we?”
“You know, I’ll probably regret saying this, but I suppose we ought to do something to celebrate the new arrival. Maybe I’ll ring Gabi back and ask if her pokémon DO fancy a little party.”
“Two trainers and their teams don’t make for a very big party,” Milliardo observed. “Then again, any more guests and people might start to worry that you actually have a social life!”
“Well that’d be well over twenty guests as it is, I’d say that’d be quite a big party in anyone’s language. But I suppose if you’re so worried about the numbers I could always make some more calls and see if certain people I’ve been spending weekends with would like to come up as well.”
“Oh my God, kill me now!” Milliardo put on his best petrified face. “You wouldn’t invite scarygirl, would you?”
“Quit it, Milliardo, we all know she doesn’t worry you nearly as much as you pretend she does. And what kind of party would it be if I didn’t ask my own girlfriend along?” To be honest it sounded like one hell of a good idea to me. For although I had been in a stable relationship for some time now, my love life and my life as a pokémon trainer only very rarely intersected, and it was impossible to keep them separated forever. I was just worried that letting the two cross would cause problems. It would tear me up inside should things go wrong in some way.
“Honestly, Ade, you’re impossible. I fail to see why I bother with you sometimes.” Tsuyoi had quite clearly picked up on my train of thought, for he was shaking his canine head in despair. “If we waited for you to actually act upon decisions that involved a slight risk, we would have all died of old age before you realised you couldn’t put things off forever. Now shall I tell you what you’re going to do? You’re going to get up off your *** and just act on your impulses for once instead of fretting over it for hours. Get on that phone and organise, or do I have to do it for you?”
“No, no, it’s quite alright, I am capable of doing things myself, thanks!” I had to admit it, Tsuyoi had a point! I wasted more time than I cared to admit wondering about the ifs and maybes of a situation, when that time would have been more constructively used in actually doing something. “You’re right, though, I shouldn’t waste so much time worrying.”
“I’m always right, Ade, I’m surprised you haven’t realised that by now.” That wasn’t something I was willing to be drawn into a conversation on! Even Tsuyoi had his flaws! But then again, I suppose that everyone does. The only thing that can be done is to try and better those flaws, to overcome the trials deep inside you. What more could possibly be done, after all?

It was later on in the afternoon that I had finally managed to get everything organised. It turned out in the end that Gabi simply didn’t have the time to stay for more than an hour or so, although that was more than enough time for her to convey her message and for our pokémon to catch up on lost time. As for our other human visitor, although she had jumped at the chance to come and visit, there had been complications with her arrival. Apparently the party proper wouldn’t begin until the evening, once trains that were screwing up more than usual had finally decided to operate properly. If it wasn’t strikes it was signal failures, and if neither of those were a problem then there were staff shortages. And on the off chance that everything was working smoothly, your train broke down halfway through the journey. No wonder most people preferred to use their pokémon as a mode of transport, they were far more reliable than the public services were most of the time!
“It’s good that you finally have a dragon, Ade.” So anyway. Here we were. Gabi and myself were sat at the kitchen table, listening in on the chaos that had now taken over the household since Kirei had suggested a game of tag. I really didn’t like to contemplate the state of the place at the end of it all! “I always thought that you would be able to raise one. And they can prove to be very helpful.”
“You speak from experience, huh?” I watched absent-mindedly as Gabi petted Marius, who was currently curled up asleep on her lap. My mind, it had to be said, was elsewhere.
“Well, that’s true. Lagi has been a great help to me over the years, but then again so have the rest of my team in their own ways. Anyway, this isn’t really why I’m here, and since I can’t stay for that long we should get down to business. I suppose you’ve been wondering what this visit is all about.”
“The thought had occurred to me. So what IS going on, Gabi?” There was a long pause, where Gabi seemed to be concentrating on something, as if she could hear some kind of barely audible sound. I was loath to disturb her concentration, but my curiosity got the better of me. “Is something the matter?”
“He’s listening in, you know.”
“Who is? Oh.” I should have realised. Tsuyoi. His psychic tendrils were everywhere, absorbing all the goings on around him. I was so used to his psychic presence that sometimes I forgot it was even there! “It doesn’t really matter that much, just ignore it. He’d find out sooner or later anyway. So what is it that you wanted to talk to me about?”
“In a nutshell, the Dragon Games.”
“I’ve got something of a problem, Ade. You remember I won a Gastly as my prize, don’t you?”
“Yes, I remember. How is it settling in, anyway? You didn’t bring it with you today.”
“I did, it’s in here.” Gabi pulled a pokéball out of her pocket. This was a strange turn of events! I knew that Gabi used pokéballs about as much as I did. What was going on here? “I have to admit, winning this has caused something of a problem for me. I really don’t think I have the time to look after any more pokémon than I already have. Now, I know how disappointed you were when you had to refuse your own prize, so that was why I wondered if you would like to take care of the Gastly instead?”
“Hold on, are you serious about this?” I couldn’t believe what I was hearing! “You’d be giving up your Dragon Games prize!”
“Ade, I told you, I don’t have the time or the energy to look after any more pokémon. I still have the stamps and the TM I won, and Tsunami has gained a lot of experience from participating, so it isn’t as if nothing good has come out of the Games. Please, Ade. I want to make sure that this Gastly goes to a good trainer, and you were the first person I thought of. I think a Ghost-type would thrive on your unorthodox methods anyway.”
“You know, when Kirei turned up I thought to myself that I had finished building my team. Seems like I was totally wrong there, doesn’t it?” I laughed to myself. This was the last thing I had been expecting, but I had to admit that both the offer and the praise were more than welcome. “Okay, Gabi. I’ll look after the Gastly for you.”
“Great!” Gabi passed over the pokéball, and I resolved to let the pokémon out the instant things had quietened down a little. “Oh, and there’s something else I had to give you. This.” Again Gabi rummaged around in her pocket and pulled out a gaily-coloured promotional flyer, advertising some sort of Easter event. “It’s a Easter egg hunt and training exercise all in one, the only event of its kind, apparently. It’s set on an island away from Ulthuan, but a few of us were thinking of hiring a boat and making a day out of it. I’d love it if you could join us. Most of the others will be there.”
“Sounds interesting.” I studied the flyer with more than passing interest. It sounded like a unique event, all right! The hunt for eggs would be combined with pokémon training, and for each battle won an Easter egg would be the reward. Well, if nothing else it would kill some time! “I’d have to put it to my pokémon first, of course, but if it were totally up to me then I’d say you can count us in!”
“That’s good to hear. I’m sure they’ll want to come along. You always did strike me as a group who liked to keep moving.” Gabi stood up, being careful to pass the still dozy Marius back to me as she did so. “I wish I could stay longer, Ade, but I’ll have to get moving again. It was nice to be able to talk to you, though. We should really do this more often.”
“Indeed. I have to admit, it is nice to have a little human company every now and then.” I moved to show Gabi out, waiting patiently as she first rounded up the pokémon she had decided to bring with her. Which in some cases was a lengthy task, especially seeing as Caledor seemed less than willing to give up his game of chase. “I’ll see you later on, then. And thanks again.”
“I should be the one thanking you for taking on the Gastly for me!” Gabi laughed, bending down to pet goodbye those of my pokémon who would allow such gestures. “We’ll see you at the Easter hunt, then! Goodbye, everyone!” And with this, Gabi and her pokémon left us to our own devices again, leaving only the shiny pokéball that I was still tightly grasping in my hand. Well now, weren’t things growing more complex by the second? Not only did we have Marius to deal with - although it had to be said that Pandora was doing an admirable job of that one her own - but there was also the matter of this Gastly. I just hoped for its sake that it was a hardy creature. You had to be prepared for anything when you entered my team, collection of misfits that it was. Although knowing my luck the Gastly would probably fit in all too well. Well, what was one more lunatic to add to the collection, anyway?

“I was thinking more along the lines of Mael.” It had grown late before I knew it. Time had a funny way of doing that to me. Especially when sat around drunkenly debating with all those I held closest, as I was currently doing. The Gastly had turned out to be a male, and one perfectly suited to the team at that. Nothing seemed to phase him. He combined a decent sense of humour with seemingly unlimited patience, and although it was hard to shake the notion that he could easily slip into the stereotypical mischievousness of his species, I had been quite relieved to see that he would fit in well. Of course, there was still the matter of naming him, and this was what we were currently discussing.
“Marius and Mael and Pandora.” Milliardo rolled his eyes. “Why don’t you just rename everyone to fit this new theme and be done with it?”
“I’m not that mean to confuse everyone with renaming, but I know exactly who gets Lestat if I did!”
“Well at least you recognise my show-stopping brilliance!”
“Gas gas gastly gas!” It had been a long time since I had to deal with the obvious problem of communication. For me it had always come somewhat naturally, the more I bonded with a pokémon, the better my abilities to translate. My previous two acquisitions had mercifully erased this problem. I had been fond of Pandora from the outset, and any problems with understanding Kirei had been smoothed over by her psychic powers. But this Gastly was a different matter altogether, and I would need some time before I could fully understand. “Gastly gasgas gastly!”
“Translation, anyone?”
“Ade, you’ve drank so much ****ing alcohol I’m surprised you can translate your own language. That’s not what he said, by the way, that’s just my comment on this situation.” Milliardo stuck his tongue out. “Okay. He’s not all that bothered what you call him as long as you do it soon, please. And he was wondering whether Gastlys are capable of drinking out of bottles. Great. Just what we needed. Another Beckham.”
“Umm, and now can I have a translation, guys?” This was from the equally inebriated girl propped up against me, the two of us sprawled on the floor with a glass of vodka and coke each. Her shoulder length black hair hung fetchingly around her face, and although this wasn’t the sort of lady who spent years on her appearance - earlier in the day she had turned up on my doorstep in a t-shirt, long denim skirt and trainers - in my mind she was perfect. The only human in the world who had ever fully understood me. Maybe that was why it seemed so natural for her to hang around with the rest of us. “You know Milly never makes sense to me.”
“That makes two of us!” Pandora giggled from her corner of the room, where she was busying herself grooming Marius. “Milliardo, you can make yourself easily understood, stop being such a ***** and let everyone in on the conversation!”
“Oh, if I must, seeing as Scarygirl’s incapable of understanding simple words now.” It was child’s play for any pokémon with a degree of psychic energy to communicate with humans. Even Kirei could manage it despite that for the most part her power seemed to control her instead of it being the other way around. And the Dark type’s superiority against psychics was partly down to possessing and understanding these powers themselves. “Well, let me think of how to put this into baby-speak for you first...”
“Milly, you’re so mean to me! Ade, discipline your Umbreon, would you? He’s being a bastard.”
“Milliardo? Discipline? Do those two words really belong in the same sentence?” I had to laugh. This was fast becoming a running joke, the same running joke that anyone who gave as good as they got when it came to Milliardo would invariably become sucked into. “Milliardo, Soo, can I just say that you two are possibly the greatest comedy act I’ve seen in a long time?”
“If you like. Glad we amuse you so.” Milliardo rolled his eyes. “Just remind me, Scarygirl, why you always seem to act so stupidly when I’m around?”
“You have this effect on people, Milly. Tell you what, you stop calling me Scarygirl, I’ll stop bugging you. Deal?”
“No chance, Scarygirl!” Milliardo grinned evilly, hopping away before the altercation could be concluded with a uncomfortably prolonged hug. Which was what usually seemed to happen if he was in danger of getting the last word in. Finally the Umbreon seemed to remember about the original topic of conversation. “Oh yeah. Anybody want to give the poor Gastly a name, before we all start having to refer to him as ‘Untitled’ for the rest of eternity?”
“Oh, I’ve got one!” After a few seconds thought, it seemed that it was Soo who had come up with a name. “What about... Bolovayr? How do you like that?”
“Gastly gas.” It was obvious that the Gastly was quite happy with this title, and whilst I had no idea how she had managed it, there was no denying that Soo could certainly come up with a decent name when she felt like it! Certainly I had no objections to the name, and it was far more original than anything I was liable to come up with!
“Well, seeing as we’re all in agreement, then...”
“I’m not.” Milliardo chuckled. “Actually, I am, as much as I hate to admit it Bolovayr’s not such a bad name. I just like being contrary.”
“I had noticed.” Slowly I dragged myself to my feet. We needed a toast to the newest member of the team! “Now who’d like to remind me where I last put the bottle?”
“I’m one step ahead of you, my good man! Or failing that, a good two measures ahead, at any rate.” As it transpired, the alcohol had rather predictably drifted into Beckham’s possession. There was no doubt about it, the Wartortle was probably worse than I was when it came to drinking. And I hated to think of what this was going to cost me when he inevitably evolved! “Here ya go, now pour us all a good double. That ought to finish off this bottle!” Of course, I wasn’t about to do that. Although a lot of my team had been exposed to my habits for too long and hence would never refuse the odd drink, some had never cared much for the partying habits of, say, myself and Beckham. In actual fact, with the exception of alcoholic Becks and party girl Kirei, everyone was quite good in that respect. Even those who would accept a drink knew when to quit. Evidently the worse habits of my darker days hadn’t been passed along, and for that I was eternally grateful.
“Okay then.” I poured a large measure of vodka for everyone who wanted it, topping it up with orange juice that was finished on those - Lucky, Sindel, Scratchy, Katnip - who cared little for alcohol. “A toast. To those who have just joined us, and to us as a team. And yeah, I know half of you are drinking out of bowls and can’t raise a glass or anything, but I’ll just imagine you have, okay?” And with this, I raised my glass before throwing a great deal of its contents down my throat. Surrounded by those I cared for, a few welcome drinks inside me, life simply getting better by the second... Yes, sometimes even I felt that it was good to be alive.

The next few days passed all too quickly for me. Soo showed no intention of leaving any time soon. Which was fine by me. It gave us more time together, something that I never really could get enough of. I was contented when she was around, a far cry from the empty shell of my previous years, a life that now seemed to be nothing more than a bad dream, something insubstantial that never really happened. And since I was happy, my pokémon prospered. Bolovayr had found his niche quite easily, his adaptable nature meaning he was equally at home partying with Kirei as he was engaging Sindel in serious discussion. Marius was growing stronger and more aware by the day, and it had to be said that he was doing wonders for his surrogate mother. I had never known Pandora to seem to at ease with herself as she was when she was mothering the little Dratini, and this had the knock-on effect of making Milliardo less irritable. Or maybe it was the fact that in Soo he had finally found the perfect sparring partner for his verbal attacks, having enough of a sense of humour to not be offended by his remarks yet enough fire within her to retaliate in kind. He had even taken to being the father figure for Marius, having developed some affection for the little Dratini himself. In short, life was good, and so it was with great reluctance that I finally prised myself away from our new life in order to attend the Easter training exercise, wielding just six pokémon - Pearl, Beckham, Bolovayr, Pandora, Milliardo and Marius - and implicit instructions from my girlfriend to return with as many chocolate eggs as I could possibly carry. And who was I to question such an instruction? So it was that I arrived at the port with plenty of time to spare, the few pokémon I had assembled ready and willing to compete in this latest challenge.
“I’ve no idea why we have to play this dumbass game in the first place.” Well, most of my pokémon were willing! In actual fact, the only reason Milliardo had bothered offering his services at all was the fact that Pandora had decided that a day out would do their little clique good. “I don’t like chocolate. I don’t fancy a battle. Remind me why I’m here at all, somebody?”
“You are here to keep your poor partner company on a terribly long ocean voyage, to stop her from going oh so slightly insane and murdering you upon her return. Don’t you remember?” Pandora shot Milliardo a glance that was guaranteed to silence him in an instant. “Now kindly shut up, matey.”
“Alright, that does remind me why I’m here. Some moron mithered me until I agreed to come along just to get some peace and quiet! Actually, the real reason is that the alternative was being stuck in a house with Scarygirl. This is far better for my mental health!”
“I wish you’d stop being so mean to her, Milliardo.” My eyes scanned the area, searching for some sign of the group I was supposed to be joining. Then again, what was the use? My vision was flawed to say the least. “Anyway, can anyone see where we’re supposed to be headed?” I hadn’t really chosen the most helpful of groups for this particular exercise, in fact I was mainly relying on Pearl’s guidance. Marius was too young to be of any assistance, in fact the only reason he had joined the group was that Pandora flatly refused to leave the house without him. Neither Milliardo nor Pandora had ever been brilliant at spotting things, and in terms of observation Beckham was worse than the rest of us combined. There was always Bolovayr, and although he seemed happy enough to assist when he could, his eyes were adapted to a more nocturnal lifestyle. So that basically left Pearl to act as the eyes of the group. “If we don’t hurry up I get this horrible feeling we’ll end up missing the boat!”
“Relax, Ade, I know you too well now not to be a few steps ahead of you.” Pearl was already scanning the ramshackle buildings and ships that made up most of the scenery around us, and eventually her sharp senses seemed to pick up on something. The Ninetales race always did seem to have exceptional senses, and although Pearl was nowhere near as exceptional as some of her kindred in these matters, what observational abilities she did possess were more than enough for our needs. “Look. Over there, in the far corner of the docks. If I’m not mistaken there’s a whole group of Dragon Tamers over there. Of course, I could be wrong, that could be just an assemblage of people who look remarkably similar to trainers I’ve seen in the past, but I’d say that possibility’s pretty slim, wouldn’t you?”
“I dunno, what happens if it turns out to be a group of shape shifting aliens, trying to trap us into a life of slavery? That boat could be their spaceship in disguise, and they... And they...” Beckham seemed to run out of steam at this point. “And they’re probably who we’re looking for. But hey, shape shifting aliens from the depths of hell could happen, you know!”
“Becks.” Pearl turned to stare at the Wartortle with a well-practised look of despair. “Shut up.”
“I agree with Pearl,” Milliardo nodded. “Becks, shut up, before the shape shifting aliens come to get you. Now are we going to start moving or not?” The Umbreon had a point, despite how rudely it had been stated! If we didn’t get a move on, we would almost certainly miss this trip, and then it would have been a wasted journey. No, better to just get a move on. There would be time enough for chatter once we had reached our destination.

As it turned out, the trip took a good hour or two on its own, and that was excluding the time taken greeting the others making the trip with us. To be honest, I found the whole journey frightfully tedious. I never could seem to find the enthusiasm within me that others seemed to feel for travel, and although the views of the ocean from the deck of our ship - a medium sized craft designed for ferrying smallish parties around - was spectacular in anyone’s language, I found myself agreeing with Milliardo’s opinion that it was ‘very pretty and all but I refuse to believe there’s any better cure for insomnia than a long drawn-out journey’. In the end I found myself spending most of the trip arguing with my Dark type pokémon, bored enough to actually try and engage them in debate. Of course I lost. It was a skilled talker indeed who could win an argument against either Milliardo or Pandora without having to resort to cheap, personal shots that would win their undying enmity! But at least the exercise killed some time. And now we had finally arrived on the island, this Easter Island, a tropical location that would have been paradise to anyone other than myself. But I disliked intense heat with a passion, and so all the climate was doing was bringing to the fore an unnecessarily irritable streak.
“Why did I think this would be a good idea?” I sighed miserably. The group had all split up, each trying their best to search for pokémon trainers who held the eggs they were seeking. If indeed chocolate eggs could survive for very long in this heat. I wouldn’t have been too surprised if I was handed a gooey pile of unidentifiable brown sludge at the end of this ordeal. “It’s too hot, it’s too far away from Ulthuan, and we’re never going to make it back home in time for the next round of drinks.”
“Well at least we’ll make it back in time for the round after that!” Beckham grinned winsomely, trudging along the sands with an unnecessary degree of high spirits. He actually seemed to be enjoying himself! “I kind of like it here. It’s got sand, sea... umm... stuff... what else begins with ‘s’?”
“I’m sure Sumi would be all to happy to offer suggestions at this point if we’d brought her along, but for now I’ll help instead and suggest ‘stupidity’ and another very important word beginning with s that describes this place.” Milliardo seemed to be about as thrilled about this scenario as I was. “Honestly, all this hassle for a chocolate egg.”
“Call me weird, but I was under the assumption that this is a training exercise more than anything.” Bolovayr scanned his surroundings, and found them to his liking. He had seen precious little of the world before now, and he liked what he saw. “What’s so wrong with chocolate anyway?”
“Nothing, but it’s not worth putting up with the sweltering heat, the constant annoying insects, OR the immensely scary company.”
“Quit being such a moaner, Milliardo, I’m quite sure it isn’t as bad as you keep making out!” Pearl sighed, openly despairing of the Umbreon. “Personally I’m beginning to wonder if you’re not just complaining for complaining’s sake!”
“It’s either that or stay quiet for him, and you know how likely THAT is!” Pandora chipped in, the little Marius sat alert upon her back. Neither seemed to be perturbed by the tropical conditions, but then again both pokémon were of types that could easily withstand heat. Marius in particular seemed to be thriving in these conditions, his big eyes taking everything in with wonder. Sometimes you had to wonder what was going on inside the developing mind of his. He certainly seemed a lot more alert and composed than most infants would be! But until he developed sufficiently to hold a conversation, such queries were liable to remain a mystery. “Right, Milliardo?”
“What is this, gang up on Milliardo day or something?” The Umbreon bit back a cruel retort, then cursed himself under his breath. What was the matter with him? He was going soft to put up with all of this! “But you’re right, I’m not going to shut up, so you can like what I have to say or it’s basically tough luck!” It appeared that Milliardo was about to launch into one of his more embittered rants, the conditions doing precious little for his mood, when he suddenly stopped in his tracks. “Oh my God.”
“What is it?”
“Hush. Keep quiet, and follow me. You’re going to love this, guys.” So saying, the Umbreon began to creep through the undergrowth of the surrounding tropics, padding his way silently through the lush forests. We had very little choice but to follow, albeit not quite as successfully as he was at keeping quiet. What on earth was going on here? What had caught Milliardo’s attention so suddenly? Following him was probably the only way to find out.

“I can’t believe you. I mean, fair’s fair, we’re supposed to lose every now and then, that’s why I use you instead of my actual team. But the least you could do is put some effort in instead of cartwheeling into trees every ten seconds!!!”
“Marill mar marill rill!!! Marill!” It was a loud and intense argument between a trainer and his pokémon that Milliardo’s ears had picked up on. Well, argument of sorts, at any rate. In truth it seemed as if it consisted of very little more than bitter words on the trainer’s part and tearful apologies on the part of the Marill he was yelling at. Secreted as we were in the bushes, we had the opportunity to study this odd couple. The trainer was a tall, gaunt figure dressed entirely in brown, his scruffy hair falling over an unshaven face. He seemed to be more despairing than actually angry, however, which was sufficient to steady my urge to interrupt before the quarrel got too out of hand. And as for his pokémon... hadn’t I seen it somewhere before?
“I think it’s some kind of Nurse Joy conspiracy amongst the Marills round here, you know.” As if listening in on my train of thoughts, Milliardo provided a whispered commentary. “Either they all look and act the same, or we’re just unlucky enough to have to run into the same brain dead one every ten seconds. Remember these guys? They were hired to provide some of the training battles at the Christmas party. I guess we just can’t escape them if we go to any of these organised events, huh?”
“Maybe so.” I had to admit, Milliardo was probably right. They certainly did seem familiar, and if they were a mercenary team then it was almost inevitable that we would run into them a lot given the amount of training exercises we participated in! “Oh well. No sense in prolonging the inevitable, I suppose. Let’s get this over with, then we can go home.” And with this, I stepped out of the undergrowth as boldly as I could manage, interrupting the trainer’s tirade in mid-flow. “Shouldn’t be so loud, you know, it makes the Easter egg hunt far too easy.”
“Oh.” The trainer’s face flushed for a second, as if he was only just remembering his purpose here. For a while he seemed rather lost for words. “Uh, sorry. I just get a little on edge in these conditions.”
“Don’t we all? So what are we supposed to do now? Battle, I suppose?”
“That’s about the size of it.” By now my opponent had regained his composure, and was sounding far more like the professional he appeared. “We have a two on two battle, and should you beat me I hand over a token that can be exchanged for a prize at the end of it all. There was talk of us trainers carrying chocolate eggs as rewards, but what with how the weather’s turned out today none of us fancied carting about huge piles of melted chocolate.” The man grinned, a warm smile that seemed quite at odds with his earlier yelling. Maybe he did have a short temper, but this seemed to be a man who cared deep inside.
“Well, that at least answers a question that was bugging me earlier, I did wonder how the eggs were supposed to survive in all this heat!” I returned the smile, wiping away the sweat from my forehead, only to have it all return with reinforcements within seconds. “Anyway, shall we begin before I melt? I’m afraid I was never very good at dealing with heat.”
“Of course. I’ll start off by using my Marill. She needs the experience.” This was said with a sideways glance at the tubby pokémon, who responded by blushing deeply, clearly ashamed. Whatever was going on between these two, this pokémon’s battle form seemed to be at the root of it.
“Okay then. I think Becks needs a battle. He’s not fought for quite some time.” I nodded to my Wartortle, who responded with a broad grin and a thumbs up. “You’ll get lazy if you don’t keep in shape, Becks.”
“Whatever you say, my good man. I’m ready, able, and all kinds of other things that I’m supposed to be before a battle.” Beckham took up his position in front of me, winking good-naturedly at his opponent. “Hey, didn’t we meet at the Dragon Games training ground?”
“We did?” The Marill seemed confused for a second, before recognition filled her eyes and she ran forward to clasp Beckham’s paws excitedly. “Oh yeah, we did, didn’t we? We were in that thing, you know, that giant room!”
“The one filled with water, yeah, and I thought it was a giant aquarium!”
“Well it was! Yeah, and we had a fight...”
“It wasn’t much of a fight, was it, we just tumbled about a bit! It was fun, though!”
“Yeah, I know, I remember really wanting to meet you again, you were the best opponent I’ve ever faced!”
“Hey, I’ve not met many fighters who like to have a laugh as well myself!”
“Oh my God.” Milliardo looked up at me, his amber eyes filled with despair. “Ade, tell them to shut up, if I hear much more of this inane chatter my head is going to explode. All of a sudden I’m really, really starting to miss Scarygirl’s company. At least it’d be preferable to this!”
“Becks, you wanna get this over with? You two can always catch up once the match is over, you know.” Although I found Milliardo’s criticism overly harsh - the two pokémon were rather cute together, chattering away excitedly - the fact remained that I wanted this whole exercise over as quickly as possible. And given how much Beckham could talk, it was wise to nip this conversation in the bud before we ended up stood here all day!
“Oh, alright.” The Wartortle took a few steps backward. “So, shall we have another battle for old time’s sake, milady?”
“Sounds good to me, Becks, me old mate!” Megan - for who else could this pokémon have possibly been? - struck the over-the-top fighting pose that was fast becoming her trademark. “Let’s do it!”

AntiAsh Superstar
28th April 2003, 10:56 AM
FIGHT!!! L26 Wartortle v L25 Marill!

No matter whether Beckham was the most easily-distracted out of my team or not, every one of my pokémon knew how to fight on their own violation. Which was why I was able to observe this battle from a distance, sat under the relative shade of a nearby tree with the remainder of my team. Leaving the Wartortle to deal with Megan on his own.
“Right, you, let’s see how you deal with this!” Beckham was always a firm believer in striking first, it came with having been semi-trained in the art of combat by Katnip, back in the days when they were but a lowly Squirtle and Rattata. The tactic had yet to really fail either of them. Which was why Beckham was already launching his first attack, a vicious Tackle that send the Marill rolling along the floor. It seemed a good enough start, but then it occurred to Beckham that something was amiss. Even given his opponent’s roughly spherical shape she was taking far too long in stopping moving. It was almost as if she were doing it deliberately!
“Becks, would you watch it? She’s using Rollout!” My warning came too late, however. There was nothing that the Wartortle could have done to avoid the suddenly speeding Marill heading towards him, so he simply allowed his instincts to act on his behalf, his head and limbs disappearing rapidly into his supremely hard shell. Not quickly enough to atop Megan from inflicting a glancing blow to his head that temporarily send the world spinning, mind you, but at least it protected him from the full impact of the blow, even if it did present him with an intriguing new problem to deal with. Here, safely cocooned within the dark confines of his shell, Beckham was reasonably safe from the Marill’s assaults, it was true, but on the other hand he couldn’t really do much to attack, either! And coming out would almost certainly put him at risk. It took time to return to his normal state. But then again, his opponent was Megan, wasn’t she? She had never been known for her brilliant tactics. So in the end Beckham decided to risk it, to hope that the Marill was as excitable - and ultimately as careless - as he remembered her. He wasn’t disappointed. As his head poked out of the shell, his eyes quickly adjusting to the change in lighting, the Wartortle was just in time to witness his opponent crash into a nearby tree.
“You never could use Rollout properly, could you?” Beckham wandered over to where Megan had slumped, temporarily dazed, and offered a hand of support.
“I know!” The Marill was more than glad to accept a lift back up into a standing position. Balance had never been her strong point. “I just got so excited when I actually hit you, I kept going, and by then I was going to fast to control myself!” Suddenly a wicked gleam came into the Marill’s eyes. “Hang on, we’re in the middle of a battle, aren’t we? Let’s carry on fighting!” Abruptly Megan clasped Beckham’s hand tightly, before swinging him into a nearby tree. The blow was less than terrible - yet again the shell seemed to absorb the majority of the impact - but it did reveal something important about Megan. She was a great deal stronger than she let on. What kind of Marill could swing a fully grown Wartortle about with such ease? And even Beckham, picking himself up and dodging a poorly-aimed Tackle attack, could see that this battle wasn’t going to be the easy ride he had initially assumed it would be. It was time to stop messing about for ten seconds and concentrate fully on the match. The fun could come afterwards. Eyeing up his opponent’s position, the Wartortle leant down onto the ground, gave a hefty push, and at the same instant withdrew into his shell. It was a strange manoeuver to say the least, and to begin with it held Megan quite captivated, wondering what on earth Beckham was trying to do. Until she saw quite clearly what was going on, and the spinning shell struck her in the face at a quite remarkable speed. “Ow!” The tubby pokémon clutched at her nose, trying to stem the nosebleed that the Rapid Spin attack had just delivered upon her. “Becks!”
“Well you said it yourself, we’re in the middle of a battle! To be honest I’m not sure what else I can do with you, my talents in battle run to ‘hit my opponent, soak them with water, freeze them or go to sleep’. I dunno, maybe I should take a bit of a nap now!”
“Maybe you shouldn’t!” As initially squeamish as the Marill was, she certainly soon got over it! Already she was tumbling towards Beckham, her earlier mishap when using Rollout evidently forgotten. However, this time Beckham was ready. He knew exactly what he was going to do to put an end to this particular attack! Taking a deep breath in, the Wartortle drew upon his vast reserves of water to produce a torrential stream that emerged from his moth, pushing against Megan until the Rollout was halted in its tracks. And for the second time in the battle his opponent found herself colliding painfully against the rough surface of a palm tree. “Damn it, Becks...” Megan shook her head groggily, trying her best not to succumb to the depressing feeling that the battle was already lost. She only really had one trick left up her sleeve, and if that failed... well, her trainer was right, wasn’t he? She just wasn’t ready to fight against the strong opponents she had been running into all day. “You asked for it, matey! Dunno what ‘it’ is, but whatever it is, I’m sure you did ask for it.”
“Was it a double vodka and tonic?” Beckham stopped in his tracks, the part of his brain responsible for his goofy nature finally regaining firm control. “If not, I’m asking for one of those now. Let’s call it a draw and go sneak a few drinks off some mug or other.”
“Oh, alright!” The Marill’s face lit up for an instant, before she suddenly remembered what she was supposed to be doing. “I mean, no, I mean... oh, I don’t know what I mean any more!” Megan flapped her little arms uselessly. “Let’s just finish this fight, then we can go on a date or something... no, I meant we should... umm... Oh, I’m all confused now. We should finish the battle, Becks.”
“Alright. Battle first, drinks later. I guess. Though if you ask me, you have your priorities totally the wrong way around, Megan. Drinks come before anything. Except in the dictionary, then ‘anything’ comes before ‘drinks’ and... hang on, we were supposed to be battling, weren’t we?”
“Yeah, we were.” Megan was secretly glad Beckham had finally arrived at this conclusion. She wasn’t entirely sure she could fight him if he was just going to talk. She would only end up getting dragged into the conversation herself! At least now he seemed ready to battle, and she could unleash her final, desperate attack. “So deal with this, Becks!” The Marill took in a deep breath, as if she was going to perform a Water Gun attack, and Beckham braced himself accordingly. The problem was, this wasn’t a Water Gun at all. Sure, it started out like one, the little Marill aiming a powerful jet of water towards the floor. But that was where the similarities ended. The instant the jet struck the ground, it bounced back up, growing ever wider, ever more dangerous. Until Beckham wasn’t being confronted with a jet of water at all. He was being confronted with an artificial tidal wave of alarming proportions, just waiting to crash down upon his head.
“Holy...” My eyes were almost bulging out of their sockets as I watched this spectacle from my relatively safe position underneath one of the palm trees surrounding the clearing that we were battling in. I had known about the Surf attack, of course; all of the books I had read on the subject of pokémon battling were in broad agreement that it was amongst the most useful water-based attacks. But seeing this spectacle with my own eyes was a memorable experience indeed! “Becks, watch it!” My warning was pretty pointless, all things considered. Even Beckham could realise the danger that he was now in! His mind raced. There was no chance that he could avoid this one! There was only one thing for it. Tackle it head on and hope for the best. “Beckham, what the hell are you doing?” I couldn’t quite believe what I was seeing! Had my Wartortle taken leave of his senses? Unless I was sorely mistaken, instead of trying to minimise the damage, he was actually running towards the tidal wave that was threatening to engulf him!
“I know what I’m doing, trust me!” It was hard to make his voice heard over the roaring of the water, but the Wartortle gave it his best shot anyway. Then he faced the water. And jumped. Straight through the Surf attack, fighting its overwhelming power with every fibre of his being until eventually the pressure abated and he emerged, battered but mostly free of serious injuries, on the other side.
“What?” Megan was stunned, breaking off the attack in an instant and allowing her carefully-built tidal wave to topple to the ground. She had been so sure that this attack would have been the deciding factor! “How did you...?” The Marill didn’t get a chance to say much else. Beckham was too tired to speak, so he let his actions do the talking, and struck Megan with a hard Tackle that sent her keeling over for the final time. At which point the Wartortle himself practically collapsed upon her, his energies spent. That one had been close! And yet, somehow, for all that Megan’s addlebrained skills had taken out of him, he had managed to come out on top. Who said he was out of practise, anyway?

Beckham wins!
Beckham grew to L27!

“I don’t get why you’re so harsh on your Marill anyway.” My opponent and myself had been in agreement that we take a few minutes out for our pokémon to recover from their hectic battle before we resume the match. Which was why we were walking side by side towards a secluded beach where we could commence the second round of this challenge, my pokémon and Megan surrounding us as we walked through the trees. “She really took it out of Beckham.”
“I know. It’s just that bloody Rollout! You saw for yourself. She’s fine until she tries that, then it all goes wrong. I try and convince her to either give up on using it or practise until she gets it right, but she’s the sort who never pays any attention to anything. It tries my patience sometimes, it really does.”
“Well I can well understand that one!” It was true, I had plenty of experience in dealing with pokémon who didn’t seem to want to listen, or were simply too easily distracted to pay attention. Still, compared to some of my team Megan seemed perfectly easy to train, and I couldn’t help but wonder how this man would cope if asked to try and train Milliardo. I eventually reached the conclusion that the Umbreon would probably drive him to a complete nervous breakdown. “Some pokémon certainly can by very trying.”
“Hey Ade, you wouldn’t happen to have a fire extinguisher on hand, would you?” Milliardo turned and fixed me with his very best superior smirk. “Only my ears seem to have started smouldering for some reason, and for once it isn’t because I’ve pissed Pandora off and got pummelled for my troubles.”
“Which is a first.” Pandora rolled her eyes. “If you go a single day without doing something annoying I start worrying there’s something wrong with you.” Absently her gaze returned to the sweeping panorama before her. It hadn’t taken very long to walk to the beach, and to be frank it had been well worth any inconvenience. This was every inch the perfect deserted tropical beach, pre white sands fringed by a leafy tropical forest on the one side and a perfectly blue sea lapping away on the other. And not a single other creature for miles around. Not only the ideal getaway, but also the ideal battleground. No worries about damaging the surroundings or catching bystanders here! Yet the only thing the Houndour found herself thinking about was how nice it would be to just stay here for a few hours and bask in the sun.
“Okay.” My opponent marched smartly out into the middle of the beach, pulling another pokéball out of his pocket. “We’re here. I don’t see any point in delaying this any longer, although you’re welcome to stay here after the battle, of course.” Clearly he had noticed how enamoured some of my pokémon were with their surroundings. As for me, however, I wasn’t really interested. It was a beach, albeit a picture perfect one. I could take them or leave them. “Which pokémon will be you be using?”
“Pandora, will you fight for me, please?” The Houndour’s ears pricked up at the mention of her name, and she swallowed her apprehension. What on earth compelled her, a pokémon who had always viewed battle as a dirty, harsh occupation, to allow herself to be placed within a fighting team? And yet she knew that sooner or later she would have to overcome her inhibitions. Even though her previous attempts had been less than successful.
“If I have to. Ade, you’re a bastard. I could be making sandcastles with Marius, but no, I’ve got to be pummelled instead.” Pandora trotted over, trying her best to maintain an air of indifference that at least seemed to fool our opponent, even though those of us more used to her mannerisms realised that inwardly she was dreading the upcoming battle. It made me feel awful to ask her to do this, but it was really for her own good. She would have to overcome her fears in order to grow stronger. And I couldn’t put off her training forever. “Let’s get this over with. I’ve better things to do than waste my time with this.”
“A Houndour, eh?” My opponent’s eyebrows arched in surprise. There was something about Pandora that was totally at odds with the stereotype of her species, and to be perfectly honest the man found it even more unsettling than if he had been presented with a snarling, vicious specimen. “Okay. I can deal with that. I’ll use...” Here he abruptly the his pokéball to the ground, where it burst open in a tremendous flash of blinding light. Leaving behind one of the few pokémon that was almost certainly guaranteed to increase Pandora’s discomfort tenfold. A small, cute little creature that stared at her with imploring eyes. A mere baby pokémon. An Igglybuff.

FIGHT!!! L7 Houndour v L10 Igglybuff!

“What kind of sadistic...” Words failed Pandora for what was possibly the first time in her entire life. She had never really trusted this trainer from the outset. Something about his demeanour had instantly irked her. But his was taking things to new lows! What kind of trainer sent a mere infant out to battle? And how was she supposed to fight it? How could any pokémon with any kind of heart battle this cute little thing with imploring eyes? And it was all the worse for her. She loved kids. Something within her psyche was finally satisfied when she had creatures to mother. So how was she supposed to bring harm to a mere baby? The concept alone was enough to bring tears to her eyes.
“Pandora, you don’t have to battle if you don’t want to.” It was easy to see how distressed my Houndour was becoming at the prospect of this match. I was seriously feeling guilty for having even suggested she fight now! But then again, who else could I send out? The adults would all be uncomfortable fighting a baby, and Marius was far too young to know how to fight at all.
“No. I’ll do it.” Pandora struggled to hold back the tears. No point in breaking down now, before the match had even started! Besides, a plan was slowly beginning to form within her mind, a plan that meant her victory without even touching her opponent. Maybe not the most conventional of tactics, but what the hell? As long as it got the job done without irreversible damage to her conscience. “Right, you.” The Houndour turned to face her opponent. “I only have one thing to say to you, sweetheart. Catch me if you can!” All of a sudden Pandora pounced straight over the Igglybuff’s head, and commenced to lead the little pokémon on a fascinating game of chase. Every time the Igglybuff grew close enough to attack, Pandora would dart away again, forcing her opponent to race after her as best as it could. It was a commendable tactic, and just proved how smart Pandora really was. She was going to win by making her opponent too tired to fight. And this tactic could have almost worked, too. Almost. But her opponent had a rather deadly trick up its sleeve. Halfway through this race of sorts, the Igglybuff simply stopped in its tracks, fixed Pandora with a peculiar stare... and began to sing. A haunting ballad infused with some mystical quality that caused any person or pokémon listening to it to relax in an instant. Normally this wouldn’t have had much of an effect on Pandora. In battle she was simply too tense, too frenzied to be lulled into a sleep. But here she hadn’t been strictly battling, had she? She wasn’t in the right frame of mind to shrug off the hypnotic effects of the Igglybuff’s song. So when the melody entered her ears, she was most receptive to it. All this running was certainly making her tired, and that song was simply so... relaxing. The Houndour’s muscles relaxed, her eyelids began to droop closed. And she didn’t even notice as the Igglybuff began to assault her.

“That’s weird.” It wasn’t just Pandora who was being lulled to sleep by the hypnotic song. Everyone in the vicinity was beginning to feel slightly tired. In fact Beckham and Megan had already fallen asleep on top of each other, the Wartortle using the Marill as a pillow of sorts. Marius had already dozed off, and I was well on my way to slumber. Pearl was withstanding the Sing attack well, largely due to her advanced levels of experience, and Milliardo’s stubbornness was proving to be an asset in staying awake. Then there was Bolovayr. Who, to be frank, was acting as if he had hardly even noticed the song in the first place.
“What’s weird?” Milliardo yawned. “Other than the fact that this Igglybuff is totally tone deaf? This music’s duller than Travis played at half speed. Do you think he takes requests?” Receiving no answer, the Umbreon started to heckle the hapless Igglybuff. “Oi! Get off the stage! You’re rubbish! We want Rancid!”
“Well, it isn’t really my place to say or anything. It isn’t my battle, but...”
“But what?” Milliardo broke off from his attempts to distract the Igglybuff, which even he could see weren’t exactly working. “Bolovayr, tell me, would you? I don’t kill people for speaking up, you know. Unless they say something completely stupid, but I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt on that one.”
“But... well, I get the sneaking suspicion that that baby over there isn’t a baby at all.”
“Say what?”
“Look at it. The tactics, they’re too intelligent for an infant, and it hits too hard. And I’m getting snatches of its thoughts. They’re not the thoughts of a child.”
“Oh great.” Milliardo rolled his eyes. For some reason he didn’t doubt the Gastly in the slightest! “Just what Pandora needed, a baby-faced adult to take advantage of her amazing ability to turn to mush whenever she sees a kid. More yelling required from yours truly, I suppose.” The Umbreon returned to yelling over at the fighters, this time addressing his rants towards Pandora. “Wanna wake up, you idiot? Before the kid who isn’t a kid at all breaks every bone in your body? Call me weird, Pandora, but I don’t actually enjoy standing here watching you get beaten up! Especially not by a FAKE baby!”
“Shut up.” The Igglybuff turned to try and stare Milliardo down with a withering glare. If he kept this up he’d totally ruin its tactics! But its gaze was met by such a scornful glance that it was in fact the Igglybuff who ended up being put off! Such undisguised, seething contempt! Secretly the little pokémon was glad that looks couldn’t actually kill, otherwise it would have been struck dead in an instant. But Milliardo was the least of its problems now. For when it turned back to the battle, it was met with an equally ferocious glare. This one coming from a creature just inches away, and possessing a rather dangerous set of sharp teeth to back up its anger.
“I can’t believe I actually fell for that.” Whether it was anger at herself for allowing the Igglybuff’s youthful appearance to trick her, or anger at her opponent, one thing was quite clear. Pandora was absolutely seething with fury, and it was a fury that needed some kind of outlet before it consumed her completely. “I get it now. Stop yourself evolving, keep the kid’s body. And use it to fool everyone. Nice trick. Shame we sussed it out.” Pandora took a step towards the Igglybuff, who had started to back away nervously. This was certainly not going to plan!
“It was my master’s idea!” came the pathetic response, as if somehow this was going to placate the furious Houndour. It didn’t. In fact the pathetic snivelling only served to annoy her further, to a point where words didn’t seem to be quite enough to express her anger. It was if her fury was building up inside her belly until it simply couldn’t be contained any longer, until it had to be forcibly ejected in a blazing inferno, in an Ember attack of such righteous power that it knocked the Igglybuff squealing to the floor in an instant. This wasn’t enough for Pandora. By now the rage was descending upon her, the desire to make the pokémon pay in kind for its earlier cruelty. The thought of having lay there whilst the Igglybuff had done whatever it liked to her slumbering body was more than the Houndour could stand. And so for once the controlled part of her personality was in full agreement with the wild, furious side. The Igglybuff had to be punished. “Stop...” Pandora’s opponent made some feeble, half-hearted attempts to defend itself, but by now the Houndour couldn’t be stopped, and its attempts to strike back only served to add fuel to her considerable rage. Every struggle resulted in harder and harder blows, until the false infant simply couldn’t withstand the assault any longer, and one, final swipe sent it crashing to the ground, not to get back up again. Pandora stared at its prone body until she was certain that it would no longer move, before turning and heading back to her friends. The rage had finally abated, her anger had been satiated. And for once its disappearance didn’t leave its usual hollow ache inside, the pain of knowing there was a part of her that was always going to be beyond anyone’s control. No, now there was merely the satisfaction of a job well done. Maybe the Houndour was simply feeling more at ease with herself. Or maybe she was simply getting used to this battling thing. Either way, it was a comfort. Finally the troubled pokémon felt content.

Pandora wins!
Pandora grew to L9!

“So much for that, then.” Some hours had passed since our battle. Some hours that had allowed for the collection of our prize - a quite magnificent chocolate egg that no doubt would have sent my girlfriend back home into raptures - and the organisation of its storage. The remnants of our time in this tropical paradise were spent simply playing on the warm sands, waiting for the rest of the Dragon Tamers group to finish with their individual quests. No doubt others would be searching the whole island for a likely opponent, having failed to locate a trainer with the ease that our group had managed. Now it was getting late - and cooler - I could finally find it within myself to actually start having a good time. Pity that already others were already starting to make their way back to the primitive port. I would have liked another hour or two to finally take in the natural splendour of this island without figuratively drowning in my own sweat. Others, however, seemed rather glad to have the whole exercise finally reaching its inevitable conclusion. “I’ll be glad to get away from here. It was nice to begin with but now it’s just getting boring.” Pandora let her eyes wander out to sea. To begin with she had been an ardent fan of this tropical setting. But her battle had left her drained both physically and emotionally, and now all she really wanted to do was to go home and cuddle up with those she loved. Was that really too much to ask?
“Now haven’t you changed your tune?” Milliardo grinned. “Whatever happened to staring at the sand like you were deeply in love with it?”
“When you’ve seen one perfect sandy cove you’ve seen them all, and it isn’t my fault that I’ve got a short span of attention, is it?” The Houndour sighed miserably. Here it was again, the inexplicable sadness that descended upon her from time to time. It didn’t even really need a trigger. Just sometimes, like now, she would simply be going about her business when all of a sudden everything suddenly seemed so useless. And then she would either give in to the urge to curl up and cry, or she would try and snap herself out of it. Like now. Now she could look around at her friends, and that little group she liked to consider her family, and all of a sudden things seemed that little bit brighter. There was no doubt about it, she was a different pokémon to the Houndour she used to be. Back then the depression had seemed a constant, and its pain had only ever been abated by even greater pain, a cruel and vicious cycle that she had been most fortunate to have been able to escape from. Yet now, although the sadness still would cloud her mind, it was now tempered by a happiness that was as equally strong. And so, by holding onto those moments of contentment, she had learned to cope with her own mind, and the only reminders of her dark past was a slight scarring upon her limbs that nobody ever dared query about. Yes, she had certainly come a long way indeed.
“Are you alright?” It was Pearl’s voice that snapped the Houndour out of her thoughts. Yet again the eyes had given the game away. Pandora sometimes hated her eyes. They would never show what she wanted them to show. Instead they revealed her innermost thoughts, and that often caused more complications than it was worth.
“Yeah, I’m fine,” Pandora lied, knowing full well that nobody was going to believe her. “Just... thinking. I suppose I should know better, shouldn’t I? Thinking’s too much hassle.”
“All depends on what you’re thinking about, doesn’t it?” Pearl smiled gently. “You know you’re trouble, Pandora? You think about the wrong things. Try thinking about having fun, about your friends and family. I guarantee it’s a lot more pleasant.”
“Yes, and just think about how we’re going back home, and waiting back there are Tsuyoi, Kasumi, Kirei, Thingy, Scratchy, Scarygirl, and... and...” The Umbreon blinked several times before turning to address me. “Ade, I really must insist that we stay here, there’s no way I can handle returning to that lot!” Milliardo was a lot shrewder than one would first suspect. Antagonistic he may have been, but he was also blessed with an extraordinary charisma, and when he decided to use those talents of his to lighten the mood not even Beckham could have surpassed him.
“Now, now, Milliardo, wouldn’t you rather return to the more temperate climate of Ulthuan? You don’t bake to death every day there, at least!”
“That’s a good point. Okay, I guess it is back to the inane asylum for us, after all.” Milliardo made it sound as if returning home was the most unappealing prospect in the world, but this was merely the actor within him speaking, supplying afflictions to his tone so realistic that you were never really sure when he was joking and when he was being serious. At least there were no such questions now. Everybody knew that no matter how much he protested to the contrary, the Umbreon was as happy with his life amidst our little group as it was possible for him to get. And as we watched and waited for the remnants of our original party to return, each with their own story to tell and brandishing the fruits of their labours with justifiable pride, it occurred to me that it was really the same for all of us. The pieces of the jigsaw were finally falling into place, and what had started off as a mad rabble of misfits with no place or direction in life was now transformed into a functional team, each member contented with their lot in life. Even if none of us had ever managed to get over our varying eccentricities. Still, what did that matter? Life was pretty good right about now. No; it was excellent. And as long as our existence kept drifting along in the direction it was currently taking, we would all be happy.

Aipom Of Doom
29th April 2003, 08:29 PM
Yay, I'm done the first thing I've posted here since January or something <_<. Anyway, this is just the Dragon Games battle I missed... I have one more non-battle story coming before I get back to writing for scenerios.

Dan’s Perspective

“So,” Aipom walked up behind me as I looked out the glass sliding door which led to the balcony of our hotel room.

“What?” I turned toward the monkey-like Pokémon, who stood about half my height. He looked up at me expectantly.

“Well, it’s been a week since they postponed the Dragon Games for a week… So, are the finals actually going to be held?”

I sighed, and looked up around the hotel room, which at the moment was occupied only by the two of us; the rest of my team was outside. That made perfect sense; it was the afternoon of a nice, sunny day, and everyone seemed to be pretty happy. Except for Aipom; he wasn’t able to take his mind off of the Dragon Games that had been postponed for unknown reasons.

“Look, do you think that I know yet? I’d have told you already if I did. I don’t know what or when we’re going to be told about what’s going on with the Dragon Games.” I realized that I sounded a bit irritated, but it had been eight days since Aipom’s second-round battle against a Snorlax and he had been whining about wanting to find out about the finals ever since. He was very nervous about the Games, and had been the entire time, but seemed to be overdoing it. He hadn’t enjoyed the last week at all; he continually groused and groaned about the Dragon Games.

“When do you think you’ll know?” Aipom persisted.

“I just said that I had no idea! It could be tomorrow, or the next day, or some other time-” I was cut off by the door to the hotel room slamming open.

“Or, you could find out right now.” Thunderblast walked swiftly into the room, clutching an envelope and chuckling to herself. The Raichu, who was slightly taller than Aipom, flung the envelope over toward me; it made an arc though the air that was obviously assisted by her psychic abilities, and landed softly in my hands. I quickly ripped open the envelope, and read through the letter.

“Well?” Aipom asked expectantly as I looked toward him.

“The finals are tomorrow,” I replied, smiling broadly. I felt a rush of excitement; it had seemed like the Dragon Games would be canceled like the last Eagle Games had been.

“Well, that’s good,” Thunderblast said. She was also smiling, but I had a feeling that she was happy because she was quite tired of how pessimistic Aipom had been the last week. “So, who’s the opponent?”

“Umm… a Hitmontop,” I said, and added, “but all of the finalists have a type disadvantage”. Thunderblast nodded; she had a strong belief that all of the tournaments should be fair in regard to type advantages and disadvantages. That belief stemmed mostly from her firsthand experience watching Sai have to fight two fire-types in the Oracle Games, while some of his opponents had very nice type advantages.

Aipom seemed a bit nervous about having to oppose a fighting-type, but was still very curious about the next day’s battle. “So… Where is it?”.

“Well, each Pokémon has a unique arena to battle on. They all have some Pokémon around, but no people. You’re in an airport.”

“Mind if I ask how they got an airport devoid of people?” Thunderblast interjected quizzically.

“It’s not an entire airport, it’s just a terminal and a hangar that they aren’t using much anyway. It’s still pretty big,” I replied after reading through the fine print near the diagram of the terminal.

Thunderblast nodded in response, then headed for the door. She said that she would get the rest of my team back to the room; at that time, only Aipom and my sleeping Dratini, Tulie, were there. My psychic Raichu left, slamming the door behind her.

The door had woken up Tulie; I comforted the baby Dratini after handing the Dragon Games letter to Aipom to read. So the Dragon Games would finally be over. I was happy about this; the free hotel room was plenty nice, but I looked forward to going back to being at the Pokémon Center and traveling around more. The last week had been pretty dull, and I was glad that the Games would finally be resolved


“Well, this is sort of sudden,” Blaze commented as he ambled into the room, walking on all four of his legs and being trailed by Thunderblast. The Quilava was the last of my fifteen Pokémon to get back to my room; the rest of my team was already there, most of them talking about the upcoming battle and what we would do afterward.

“Yeah, it is,” I addressed Blaze, “But it’s nice that we’ll finally have this resolved, and we can do other stuff.” He nodded in agreement.

“So anyway,” Sai had just finished examining a more detailed letter about the finals of the Dragon Games. “Tomorrow morning at ten o’clock, the battle is supposed to start. Aipom will be alone; we won’t be able to watch, though the judges will. Anyway, we need to leave early to get over to the airport, so we better get everything we need to do done tonight.” Not that there was really much to do; but I agreed with Sai that we didn’t want to have anyone complaining because they didn’t have time for something.

“When are they kicking us out of the hotel room?” Zippy spoke up, sounding surprisingly calm for her, since she was usually in a state of rage. Sai looked at her quizzically for a moment, and then told us that the night after the Finals was the last free one we got at the hotel.

No one seemed to have any more questions, so we all spread around the room, preparing for the trip we would take next morning.


Blaze gave a loud yawn as we entered the busy airport, which expressed what the rest of my team was thinking. We had woken up only two hours earlier, and had taken a long, boring train ride here. It was now around nine-thirty in the morning, and Aipom’s battle was scheduled to start in half an hour.

I led the large group of thirteen Pokémon across the airport. Flatten, being way too big to stomp across a heavily-populated public place like this, was in his Pokeball. Lapras, who had wanted some time to herself, stayed back at the hotel. The rest of my team was following behind me as we moved toward the terminal in which the battle would take place.

“Well, here we are,” Sai pointed to the door ahead. A person in a Dragon Games Employee was leaning against the wall next to it. Seeing us, he stood up and walked over.

“Hi,” he greeted us, “You’re the one who’s having your Dragon Games final here, right?” I nodded, and showed him my Dragon Tamers ID for verification. He approved of it, and went back over to the door and unlocked it.

“Well, Aipom, are you ready?” Thunderblast talked to the very nervous Pokémon standing next to her.

“I guess,” Aipom wasn’t very confident, and didn’t act it. Nonetheless, he did want to win his battle, and he walked toward the door. The man opened it up, and followed Aipom in. Behind him, the door slammed shut. The rule for this round was that no one save a few judges would watch, and they would be tracking the battle from another room.

“So,” Aqua spoke up as we walked away from the door. “Does anyone else feel hungry? I wouldn’t mind getting some breakfast now.”

Thunderblast raised the end of her tail, and lightly smacked Aqua on the back of her head. “Of course we’re all hungry, Totodile,” she said, a bit irritated. “Aipom is the only one who’s had anything to eat so far…”

“Well, that’s why we’re going to get some food,” I cut Thunderblast off. I was hungry myself, and I didn’t feel like listening to these two as we walked through the busy airport.


Aipom’s Perspective

The metallic door slammed shut and locked automatically as the man followed me into the terminal. It seemed eerily empty; no one, save a few Machokes working on some construction, was in the area. I walked across the tiled floor nervously, with the man’s shoes stamping loudly behind me.

The man walked ahead, and unlocked another door. “You’ll be battling in there,” he said, opening the door to a hallway. “Good luck.”

I walked through the door, and it closed and locked behind me as the last door had. I paused a second, and listened as the man walked away on the other side; his footsteps were the only noise. It seemed like he was walking away, probably toward some room where he would watch the battle.

“Hi,” a Pokémon voice broke the silence; and it was rather close. I turned instinctively and looked down the hall. A Hitmontop stood a few feet away.

“So, you’re the one I’m battling for the Dragon Games finals?” he asked happily. I quietly responded yes.

“Okay, then, let’s start the fight.” He jumped into midair and flipped over, landing on his head. He quickly started to rotate, and quickly got faster. Finally, he tilted his weight, and shot down the hall away from me into the next big terminal room. I jogged after him.

Aipom (Lv. 12) vs. Hitmontop (Lv. 14)

The Hitmontop had led us into a large waiting room; there were padded seats surrounding the room, and an open space in the middle. Immediately, Hitmontop flipped over, standing on his hands. He lowered the spike on his head, and pushed; and he started to spin.

The Hitmontop was true to his name; he now spun like a giant top in the center of the room. This was a unique characteristic of his species that allowed him to fight in unusual ways. I’d have to be careful.

I watched carefully as the Hitmontop seemed to build up speed. Finally, he leaned his body a bit, and started spinning in a large arc toward me. It looked like he was going to try to use a Rapid Spin; I prepared to counter it.

As I expected, Hitmontop launched at me. He spun with an impressive speed, considering he also had to aim and me and control himself so he hit powerfully. However, I had a plan to stop him. I leapt to the side, away from his aim, and diving onto the tile floor. As he slowed a bit to turn and aim at me again, I used a quick Tail Whip. My tail skittered across the floor, hitting his spike and wrapping around it.

My tail curled up to surround the spike, then smashed into it violently. It hurt quite a bit to touch the spinning spike, but eventually I accomplished my goal. Hitmontop tumbled over onto his back, and I scurried away and got up. The Hitmontop may have had more power, but I had outwitted him. At least for now.

The Hitmontop was somewhat dazed and somewhat surprised; he made no attempt to move. Not wanting to waste this opportunity, I dashed toward him. I stood over the Hitmontop as he lay on the back, and gave a powerful Slash across his stomach. The pain got the Hitmontop moving; he sat up, clutching at the long cut where I had hit him. I dashed away, out of his range.

I watched the Hitmontop from a safe distance again. He seemed shaken up, but determined to not let it stop him. He sat down and closed his eyes, starting to concentrate. It looked like a Focus Energy; which made sense, since he needed to concentrate on the battle against me.

However, this was a risky, but well worth it, opportunity for me. If I could hit him, the Focus Energy’s effects could be negated, and I could get ahead in the battle even more. I dashed forward, and leapt into the air at the Hitmontop, who still had its eyes closed.

When I was in the air, Hitmontop quickly opened its eyes. I didn’t think it could do anything about my imminent attack in just half a second, and I was right. However, I had not noticed the Protect shield he had previously made. I Slammed into the invisible shield of energy with a great deal of force. Hitmontop backed away as the shield sank a few inches, and I slid off. My body ached quite a bit; I had put a lot of force into my Slam, and it all reverberated back at me when I hit the Protect.

I fell a few inches and landed on the floor, and Hitmontop turned toward me. I got up, and the Protect shield was gone; Hitmontop had stopped his concentration on it. He now focused completely on me.

He swiftly dashed toward me, and leapt into the air. Before I could make myself run, I felt the Hitmontop’s spinning feet smashing into my chest. He was using a Rolling Kick; I slammed into the tiles hard. Hitmontop nimbly bounced off of me, and flipped over backwards, landing on his feet.

The wind was knocked out of me quite a bit, and I was shaken up; but I pulled myself up quickly. I wanted to win this, even though I was losing faith that I would. Hitmontop looked like he had been preparing to attack, but quickly changed his plans.

I quickly created a small black orb that floated above my hand. It expanded a bit, and turned into the usual shape of a ghostly Shadow Ball; I waited for the power to build up a bit. However, it was not nearly charged to the capacity I could have made it, but I had one last desperation plan to try to save the battle. With a flick of my wrist, I sent the Shadow Ball flying at the Hitmontop.

Though it was less powerful than normal, the Shadow Ball was also faster. Plus, Hitmontop wasn’t expecting it to be launched yet; I caught him by surprise. The ghostly orb disappeared as a purplish haze engulfed the Hitmontop for a moment, then disappeared as he stumbled backwards.

While all of this was happening, I dashed forward. My tail stiffened and started to become a dull metallic color. I reached the fallen Hitmontop and swung my body around, the Iron Tail slicing through the air with tremendous force. It hit the Hitmontop, who was sitting up, in the arm. He was knocked to the ground again.

However, the Hitmontop rolled away from me and quickly stood up. I watched warily as he closed his eyes and extended his hand in my direction. It was too late by the time I realized what he was doing; the Mind Reader was already probing my mind, showing him my next actions.

I knew that any semi-powerful attack would probably be the end of me, so I dashed at the Hitmontop with an attempt to hit him with a powerful Slash and knock him out of the Mind Reader concentration. However, I failed to realize that his Mind Reader let him see what I was planning, so he simply backed up and my tail claws flailed weakly at him as I stumbled forward.

I barely even could tell what hit me after I fell on my stomach. I guessed that it was a Revenge, and Hitmontop had fueled all of the damage I had dealt to him into a raging attack back at me; whatever it was, I was slammed into the tiles below me. I tried for a few moments to get up, but I could feel faint coming on. I collapsed on the floor and things started to get hazy before they disappeared completely.

30th April 2003, 02:58 PM
I'm not posting a essay thing, but I might later. Anyhoo, I have a question are those stamp things a picture anyone can do, like an alt number one like these: °®ÃÍè¬ etc. Or is it one someone made on paint or something cuz it looks cool and I might want to use it on other forums if it's an all computer one. Could anyone tell me.

Lady Vulpix
30th April 2003, 03:02 PM
It's the ¢ symbol in Webdings font. (Alt+189).
Ade and Danny, I haven't finished reading yours yet, though what I've read so far is great. I'll try to finish soon. Sorry for the inconveniences.

30th April 2003, 03:07 PM
Actually LadyVulpix Alt plus 189 is : +

Lady Vulpix
30th April 2003, 03:11 PM
Oh, Danny, I've finished reading yours now. I'll give you 8 stamps for it, but is that how it ends? It looks as if it was missing a conclusion. ¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢

Lady Vulpix
30th April 2003, 03:12 PM
Originally posted by Swinubman53
Actually LadyVulpix Alt plus 189 is : +

You may have a different keyboard configuration, or a different operating system. It's ¢ for me.

Aipom Of Doom
30th April 2003, 03:43 PM
Originally posted by Lady Vulpix
Oh, Danny, I've finished reading yours now. I'll give you 8 stamps for it, but is that how it ends? It looks as if it was missing a conclusion. ¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢

As I said, I'm not done. There will be a second part to it with a conclusion and other stuff before I get back to the scenerios. The end of the battle just seemed like a convenient breaking point between the two. And thanks for the stamps =)

BTW, the ¢ symbol for me is alt - 0162.

30th April 2003, 03:44 PM
Yeah I just got that but the stamp looks different. And besides I cant post it here because I only have four font selections on my font list here in post reply menu.

Lady Vulpix
30th April 2003, 03:55 PM
Danny: oh, I see. Sorry I missed that detail. I've had low blood pressure today.
Swinubman53, you can do this: quote a post with a ¢ symbol on it, and copy the UBB code to your own post.

3rd May 2003, 06:49 PM

How can I explain what happened today? I'm not even sure that I fully understand. It started off with a visit to the Dragon Tamers Adoption Center...

Switchblade the *male* Porygon's POV:

"What is your name? Why won't you tell me your name?" I looked pleadingly at the Trapinch standing before me, puzzled. He was a little smaller than average for his species, but not considerably. What was stranger, though, was that his skin had a slightly golden tint. I had heard about rare pokémon of their kind who had different appearances than the regular ones of their species, but, if I had been paying any kind of attention at all to my trainer's excited talking on this subject (because she loved "shiny" pokémon, as she called them), I remembered her saying that shiny Trapinch were turquoise. This Trapinch's golden luster did not even look close to turquoise. And the weirdest part? He was reluctant to tell me his name, no matter how many times I asked.

"My real name does not suit me yet," he insisted again. "Please do not badger me continually for it. When I finally evolve, you will understand."

I shrugged. "I doubt it. I'll probably never see you when you've evolved. There are so many different trainers that might adopt you that I'm not sure we'd ever meet again."

"Of course we will," he said. "Unless we're never out of our pokéballs at the same time."

"Er, what? Now I'm really confused." I felt kind of dizzy. Talking to this Trapinch was... weird. He was too enigmatic. He seemed to speak in riddles all the time. I could hardly ever figure out what he meant.

"I'm coming along with you. Your trainer adopted me earlier this morning."

I felt really stupid. "Why didn't you tell me this earlier?" I cried out, frustrated.

The Trapinch laughed good-naturedly. "Sorry, but I found it very amusing."

"Well," I began, regaining my composure, "if we're going to be on the same team, I think I really should know your name."

"No one will know my true name until I evolve," the Trapinch maintained.

"But... What am I supposed to call you?" I was nearly about to give up. This Trapinch's confusing thought process was way too complicated for me.

At that, he smiled. "I guess I've tortured you quite enough. Fine, I'll let you call me Ryu for now. Mind you, that's not my real name. You'll have to wait for quite a while to find that one out." Ryu winked.


I remember walking up to the Dragon Tamer's Adoption Center that morning. The golden Trapinch had immediately caught my eye. We started up a rather interesting conversation: one that I will remember for quite some time...

"Ryu" the male Trapinch's POV:

Well, today was an anomalous morning. A trainer actually talked to me without going totally insane. She could tolerate my irritating, secretive manner without so much as a sign of annoyance. Naturally, I thought it best that I secured her as my trainer before I lost my chance to get out of the adoption center forever. She was the only one who could stand me at that point; it only made sense that I went with her. Otherwise, I might never have gotten a chance to evolve; I might have been forced to remain a Trapinch forever.

Why was evolution so important to me? Oh, that was a secret... A secret only I myself knew, a little of which I revealed to my future trainer. I do not care to repeat what I said to her.


We left the Dragon Tamers Adoption Center with an odd new member (which wasn't saying much; we were all odd, if I could say so myself). I was kind of curious as to what Ryu's real name was, but I guessed I had to help him evolve first. He was determined not to tell under any other circumstance. He regarded his real name as a great honor, but without evolution, he did not think he deserved it. Maybe his name had something to do with his remarkable, sparkling golden tone, but I wasn't about to ask. I had promised not to, anyway.

I had thought that the journey to Easter Island was over; after Lune's victory, I couldn't remember much, except that when I did start to realize where we were, we were back here, standing outside the Dragon Tamer's Adoption Center. Days might have went by, even weeks, or perhaps just several hours; wherever there was strange magic around, the passage of time was never certain. But there we were, suddenly, at the adoption center. Whether it was fate that called us to Ryu or just plain chance, I found myself feeling sort of glad that we had gotten the chance to meet. I didn't know much about him, but that in itself was what really intrigued me; he had such an interesting character, and was really quite pleasurable company once I got used to him.

Apparently Easter Island was not quite done with me, though. As soon as I had Evenstar, Nimrodel, Élan, Lune, and Ryu in their pokéballs, Switchblade and I stepped outside... And then it happened all over again. The swirling colors, the wind beneath our feet, the flight through untrackable space and time... And then, voila! We fell thump onto the soft grass of Easter Island and found ourselves staring into the creepy eyes of the giant stone statues again.

"KARIN?!" I heard Kristyn yell. "You're here again?"

"Yeah," I said, still shaken from the ride.

"Weird. Well, guess what. I finally figured out what to do with my old Igglybuff. It turns out that she's remarkable talented in pokémon contests! It's great; she doesn't have to battle, and she's much happier now."

"Oh, cool. Glad to hear that."

"I also got a new Igglybuff," she continued. "This one's a real killer. He'll be a tough matchup for your pokémon, I'll bet. Wanna try him?"

"Um, sure," I replied. I reached to my belt for Lune's pokéball, but, to my surprise, Ryu shot out of his own abruptly.

"Sorry about that, but every battle opportunity brings me one step closer to evolution," he smirked, slyly.

After seeing Lune's performance, I hesitated less about Ryu battling the more heavily trained Igglybuff, but I was still worried. According to Kristyn, this Igglybuff was much stronger... And if that were true, Ryu, having far less options than Lune, would have more than just a little problem.

"I remember Lune's previous battle with an Igglybuff," Ryu said, referring to what I had told him when we had begun to chat at the adoption center. "Don't underestimate what I can do. I can learn to immitate any kind of style and strategy quite quickly. Let me show you what I mean." With that, he stepped into the grassy arena ring, waiting patiently to greet his Igglybuff opponent.

Lady Vulpix
3rd May 2003, 07:12 PM
Oh, Ade, sorry about the delay. You get 23 stamps for your AMAZING story!! Keep up the great work! ¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢¢

Karin, you can have 4 stamps for your interesting and intriguing intro. ¢¢¢¢

3rd May 2003, 08:03 PM
Part 1 of 3: My Easter Adventure-Prologue

It was a Saturday while I was on the computer in my home in Littleroot. Snabura, or Snabu, my Slugma, and Slubba, my Grimer, were playing in my room upstairs. My Numel, Volcamel, or Ocam for short, was watching TV and he called me over.
"Chris! Look at this Easter Island thingy!" he yelled. "There's a big comeptition for easter eggs."
"That looks cool! I'll ask my mom if I can go." I said.

* * *

"Pleeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeease Mom?" I said pleading. "Pleeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeease can I go to Easter Island?"
"Oh, fine! Just use my sweet Swellow to bring you there and only bring three pokemon aside from her!" She yelled. "And if you battle with Swellow, may the sleeping Kyogre strike you with an Ice Beam!"
"Thank you!!!" I screamed.
It didn't take me long to choose my three pokemon. I chose Ocam because he told me about it in the first place, and Snabu and Slubba because Snabu was my strongest other than Bulbaur, who was vacationing with May and Brendan in Lilycove along with Starspot and LadyLuck.

* * *

I ran-well, it was more of a sprint-to Birch’s lab to tell him the good news. I burst through the door-but Birch wasn’t there.
One of his aides told me he had left for Rustboro to talk with the Devon Co. about a new ball suggestion that would help your pokemon with contests. Brendan gave him the idea before he left because he was going to enter the Master Rank for Coolness with a Swellow full with Pokeblocks. So I left with out telling him, but one of his aides would.

* * *

I was flying atop Swellow and we ran into a patch of trees. It hurt! When I got up, I noticed that they were more like an arena. I looked around. Then I saw the trainers-TONS of them-and I saw a sign! It said:

Welcome to Easter Island,
home of giant Nosepass stues and
trainers with delicious Easter Eggs!

I was so relieved that we had made it okay. I walked around, putting Mom’s Swellow back in her pokeball. I packed it on my belt.
And I got ready for the best adventure I’d probably have.

So, Lady Vulpix, did you like it? P.S., can we battle pokemon on the Island to go up levels before we battle trainers?

3rd May 2003, 08:49 PM
It was a dark, quiet night. Crickets were playing their silent music while the owls sang to it. Thick black covered the sky like a piece of velvet. The moonlight gleamed against the river softly. Besides the river, a dark figure stood. It raised its head and howled at the night sky. When it lowered its head, it let out a simple growl than slowly walked away. Suddenly, it frooze and crouched low to the ground. With another growl, it leaped up and pounced on a young girl. The girl screamed but than she knew right away what it was. She simply sighed than pushed it off of her.

"Don't do that! That slow creepy thing in the shadows!" she ordered.

The creature simply lifted its head revealing it was a Houndoom. A smirk spread across the wolf's jaw and he calmly stood up straight.

"I forgot," he said with an evil smirk.

"Maybe this will help you remember," said a voice from neaby.

Without warning, Lirima leaped from the girl's side and pounced Sith. Sith growled in response and pushed the Persian off. The both of them circled each other, growling and showing off fangs. Rachel sighed and grumbled something under her breath than finally spoke up.

"Sith, Lirima, please not again." she said

Lirima glared at Sith and he glared right back. Finally, the Persian lays on the ground and begins licking her paw. Once in awhile, biting at her petruding claws. Sith walked back towards the river mumbling curses about the cat. Around the camp were a lot of Pokémon. Varyar and Aaye were laying together near a roaring fire in the middle of the camp. Both of them were happily snuggling under a warm blanket. Besides them, Rogue laid on a blanket staring up at the stars. Evylan stood on a rock, keeping a sharp alert on her surroundings while Zorro was fast asleep by the fire. Rachel sat besides the fire and scratched Varyar behind the ear. Rogue sat up than climbed in Rachel's lap and nuzzled her other hand. Rachel used her other hand to pet the Vulpix.

"Where are we going?" asks Rogue.
"Some place called Easter Island...never heard of it," said Rachel.
"Must you ask so many questions Rogue, it's late." sighed Varyar
"Varyar, be nice." says Aaye.
"Yes, dear." said Varyar.

Than, from the rock, Evylan let out a roar that echoed through the forest. All the Pokémon sprang on their feet, now very alarm. Evylan leaped from the rock, staring up at the boulder growling. Rachel walked over to Evylan and slowly pet her forehead to try and calm her down.

"Shhh, it's okay girl, what's wrong?" Rachel whispered.
"Something just fell on my back!" roared Evylan.
"It's a monster! Oh my god! What if it comes for me next?!?!" screamed Epona.
"Calm down Feu," mumbled Legolas.
"CALM DOWN!?! A MONSTER WILL KILL US ALL!!!! MOMMY!!!!!!!" screamed Epona.
"I'll go check," Rachel said.

Rachel climbed up on the rock and looked around. She looked around in the tree branches above the boulder but found nothing. The girl than noticed a bunch of moss on the tree trunk. Than it moved! She poked at the moss than it moved and scrampled up the tree. Now she was confused. Her eyes followed the thing until it was on a branch than fell into her arms. When it fell, she than knew what this was.

"Raptor, what are you doing scaring the crap out of Evylan?" asks Rachel.
"I didn't mean too..I fell off. I swear!" protested a small Treecko.
"Fine, just be a little more careful, okay?"

The Treecko nodded in response than crawled out of her arms and around in the grass. Akuji watched as the strange lizard crawled around. Raptor got on his hind limbs than walked over to Epona who was nibbling on the grass.

"Hello," greeted Raptor.

Epona turned her head to see the tiny lizard. She neighed and stomped her hooves around and reared up, paniced. Raptor quickly scampered into a tent, cowering. Evylan roared angrily at the tent than flew back on her rock, once again on guard.

"Stupid little twat. How dare that bloody lizard do that to me," growled Evylan.
"I think it was an accident," said Akuji.
"I hate lizards..they're so scary..." studdered Epona.
"Epona, you think a caterpillar is scary," said Zorro.
"STOP IT! You'll give me nightmares," cried Epona.

Rachel didn't pay any attention to their conversation however. She crawled into the tent to find the Treecko hiding in a pillow case. At first, he cowered thinking it was someone that was going to hurt him. Raptor looked up at her with his big yellow eyes. When he realized it was her, he slowly crawled out and let her pick him up.

"It's okay, don't worry, Evylan is hard with most of the new ones." said Rachel.
"They all hate me..."
"No, they don't."
"Don't worry, they'll grow to love you."

Rachel sat in the tent, comforting the little lizard until it was time for them to go to bed.

The next day, Rachel recalled all the Pokémon into their Pokéballs, except Evylan who flew her to Easter Island. When they arrived, Rachel recalled Evylan than sent out Lirima and Sith. Lirima admired the lovely pastel decorations while Sith twitched madly in the place of beautiful colors. All around were people preparing for Easter.

"Wow, this is pretty," said Lirima.
"It's okay," said Rachel.
"Oooo...I think I'm going to be sick," mumbled Sith.

A little Pichu walked towards Sith, handing him a chocolate bunny. Sith stared at the food oddly, than snarled at the Pichu. The mouse freaked out and ran off. Sith smirked proudly at his work than continued walking. Rachel pulled out a scedule thingie and read it. Sith cowered in a corner twitching at all the kindness.

"Lets see...we have to fight Shannon at the meadow.." Rachel read.
"Don't worry about it Rach, I'll tear those wimps apart," grinned Lirima, showing off her claws.
"Um, no Lirima. It says Shannon's Pokémon are at level 5 and 10...I don't think you could fight them.." says Rachel.
"Okay, so who is?" asks Lirima.
"Well, I was thinking we'd let Raptor fight."
"Raptor?! Are you sure? He's never fought before."
"Neither have my other low level Pokémon,"

Lirima sighed, doubting her master's plans but she went along anyway. Rachel turned to Sith and beckoned him to come over. Sith slowly got up and walked over to Rachel.

"Put me back in my PokéBall please! I can't take all this kindness in one setting...need....hatred...." said Sith.

Rachel recalled the Houndoom than walked to the meadow to find a Pichu and Igglybuff playing with a bunch of flowers. The both of them peered up to see Rachel and her Persian. They got up than danced around Lirima singing. Lirima stared at the odd little things, tempted to extend her claws and attack. Than a girl stepped on the meadow and called them back.

"Hello," she said.
"Um, hi.." Rachel said.
"So, you want the egg?"
"Not really,"

The girl stared at Rachel oddly than shrugged.

"Yeah, I don't get it either," she said, shrugging.
"Seems like an awful lot of work just for candy..but I just like battling,"
"Okay, wanna battle?"
"Ok, I'll first be using Pichu."

The Pichu crawled on the meadow and glared at Rachel. Lirima chuckled at the mouse. Rachel withdrew a Pokéball, tossed it into the grass releasing Raptor. Raptor stared around oddly than looked at the Pichu.

Raptor's POV
Oh my god! She wants me to battle! What is that girl on!?! And to make things worse, I'm fighting against a Pichu...talking about embarassing to loose against a Pichu..oh well..I'll give it my best shot I guess. It was fun knowing Rachel while it lasted I guess.

"Use your Thundershock,"
"Raptor, try a Pound."

When I heard Rachel say that I had my doubts but I have to do what I'm told. That would be rube. I rushed towards the Pichu than thwapped it hard and it got mad. Didn't seem like I hurt it all that much, but the bruise on its face said a lot to me. Maybe I do have a chance to win. Than, the Pichu's cheeks sparked and before I knew it, I was being zapped with a Thundershock! It stun a bit, but didn't really hurt. There's a chance I may win this!

"Try your Charm,"
"Go for another Pound."

I nodded to agree with Rachel, than I thwapped the Pichu in the stomach. The Pichu hollared in pain than fell to the ground. Ouch, critical hit.. that'll leave a nasty mark tomorrow. Rachel was so happy with me beating the Pichu and I was too.

"Pichu, return!"

The opponent withdrew the Pichu in her PokéBall. I hope I didn't hurt her that badly. Maybe I'll get Rachel to give her a Super Potion afterwards, just in case. Suddenly, I felt much more powerful. I just gained a level! Oh my god! I also now know Absorb! GREAT! Now I'm feeling much more confident! Bring it on dood! Fear the lizard! BWAHAHA..I feel calm down now..

"Go Igglybuff, use your Pound."
"Use Pound too Raptor,"

I extended my fore limb out than thwapped the Igglybuff on the head. It didn't seem to bother it at all! The Igglybuff grinned than thwapped me in the tail. It really hurt! The pain is extreme! I still can go on though..nothing can stop me now! Not now! Not when I'm doing so well for my first try!

"This is almost too easy, Igglybuff use your Charm."
"Raptor, try an Absorb!"

I sank my tiny fangs into the Igglybuff's arm and began to drain her energy to myself. I feel better now, but I'm still in a bit of pain. The Igglybuff began to flutter its eyes at me. Strangely, I didn't really wanna attack it...it seemed to sweet and innocent that I couldn't.. Oh great, I fell for the Charm. There goes my win...

"Very good, now use another Pound,"
"Raptor, try your Pound again"

I gotta snap out of it! The fate of my self being is at stake and I can't let Rachel down..not like this anyway... I thwapped the Igglybuff upside the head and once again, it didn't seem to harm her that much. She backhanded me so hard in the face it felt like she broke my nose. A single drop of blood rolled down my nostril. It was so gross! My hind limbs hurt so badly...my stomach hurts and I feel like I'm gonna pass out. I turned around to notice Rachel taking out my PokéBall.

"Maybe you should return Raptor.." said Rachel.

I looked back at her, looking worried than back at the confident smirk of the Igglybuff and her trainer. I took a deep breath than shook my head at Rachel. Slowly, I stood back up and glared at the Igglybuff.


I grinned back at Rachel, showing her I was okay. She sighed, hoping I would be okay. Prepare yourself Igglybuff..there is one more surprise to come for you..

"Raptor, use your Solarbeam."

I dug my toes into the ground than opened my mouth as I took in the rays of the sun into my own power. Now the Igglybuff and her trainer looked nervous. Haha! That's what you get for messing with me!

"Igglybuff, use your Defence Curl!"

The Igglybuff curled herself into a ball, praying for the best. Yeah right, that will not save her now. I have gathered enough energy now..it's time. With all the rest of my strength, I exhaled a bright beam at the Igglybuff. When it colided with the Pokémon, dirt and smoke filled the meadow and it all cleared away, the Igglybuff was left badly hurt. I can't believe I won my first two battles! Now I'm feeling a lot more confident in myself. I can feel me getting stronger already. Rachel ran up to hug me and Lirima nuzzled me happily. I'm so happy now.

Yes, it sucks but I just want my Treecko to be stronger so that's all the matters ^.^;;

3rd May 2003, 08:53 PM
DarkPrincess, I actually enjoyed reading that! It was good!

4th May 2003, 06:01 PM
My Trip

My Perspective

"Ugghhh.... What happened." I looked around, and saw a beautiful reception room with a strange portal behind me. "Hmm, that must the portal they told me about. If that's so, then this must be the Easter Islands, home of the famous Easter Eggs.", I thought. I read the notice throughly, and then looked around for a trainer.

Suddenly, a voice remarked, "Ah, you must be the newest trainer to come to Easter Island! I am Brian. I have a Lv. 5 Pichu and a Lv. 10 Igglybuff. If you are a beginning trainer, I suggest you battle me. What are the Pokemon you will use?" I thought for a few seconds, then said

"Fine! I will choose my Slugma, Lv. 6, and my Girafarig, Lv. 6 as well, from the Pokezoo adoption center. So, let's battle!", I heartily said. We both walked towards a small arena.

"Fine, let's start! Pichu, GO!", he said. "Hmm, I will choose Girafarig! It's bred-on move will be Take Down!!!", I replied. A young Pichu and a juvenile Girafarig popped into the arena. "Pichu, Thundershock!", Brian yelled. "Girafarig, ram it with your tackle!"

Girafarig POV

My trainer was a nice guy. I respected him, he respected me. When he told me to battle this measly Pichu, I was delighted. It was a chance to destroy my first opponent! I listened to my trainer's directions, and got ready. The little Pichu started to crackle with electricity, so I reared up, let out a cry, and rushed towards Pichu. Just before I hit Pichu, he released a jolt of electricity, shocking me. I yelped in pain, but not wanting to dissapoint my trainer, I rammed myself into Pichu, sending him flying. The Pichu's trainer told him to use something called "Charm". I didn't really know what was going to happen. My trainer yelled for me to use my Take Down. Pichu suddenly looked as cute and charming as it could ever be. I couldn't possibly attack such a cute thing. Suddenly, I heard my trainer yell at me to attack. I shook my head to clear out the "cute Pichu" image, then rushed towards Pichu, I slammed all my force into Pichu, but I was too reckless and hurt myself some with the force. It cried, and it looked like the end was near for it. My trainer yelled for me to finish it off with a Tackle. Confidently, I slammed my full body force into the tiny Pichu, sending him flying. Pichu cried in pain, and then fell down, knocked out. Suddenly, I felt power surging into me, as I gained a level.

"Yes! Ha ha! Now Brian, what now! My Girafarig now learned Confusion! You can't win!", I bragged. "Just you wait, Mr. Humble, my Igglybuff will destroy your Girafairg! GO!!!"

Girafarig's POV

The pink blob appeared suddenly on the arena. This would be easy. First the tiny Pichu, and now a pink balloon?! Come on... The trainer yelled out for the thing to use Pound. My trainer told me to use Confusion. Searching through my mind, I concentrated all my budding psychic powers into sending that Igglybuff flying. Just before Igglybuff tried to use Pound, my eyes glowed with the powers, and sent Igglybuff flying two feet. She cried in pain, and rolled around on the ground. The Igglybuff's trainer told it to use Sing. Suddenly, it sang the most sweet song I ever heard. I couldn't help but listen. The song fogged up my mind, slowly shutting me down. Tired, I yawned, and layed on the ground, falling asleep...


"Uh oh", I said. "Eh, no matter. Go, Slugma! Your bred-on move will be Heat Wave! So, let's go with a Smog attack!" "Is that so?", Brian replied. "Well then, Igglybuff, use Sing to send it to sleep as well!"

Slugma's POV

I came out of my Pokeball into the arena. My enemy: a pink Igglybuff. My trainer told me to use Smog, so I sent out a noxious gas towards Igglybuff. It drifted around, coming to descend on Igglybuff. She started on her song, but the Smog caused her to cough intensly. She continued to hack her lungs out, as if the Smog had poisoned her. My trainer celebrated, and told me to use my Heat Wave. I blew a heated breeze over towards Igglybuff, who was still having coughing fits. The wind caused the air to ripple, and Igglybuff sweated profusely. Her trainer looked quite worried, as he had her use a Defense Curl against me. IT was no use, as Igglybuff was too hot and poisoned to do any effective attack. Igglybuff, in absolute desperation, gave up, and fainted. I then felt a new force rise towards me. I had gained a level...

Lady Vulpix
5th May 2003, 09:53 AM
Rachel gets 9 stamps! Hmm... Your pokemon have conflicting personalities, don't they? Your story was nice, Rachel, bu