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Pague
February 26th, 2008, 04:02 PM
I'm sure you're sick half to death of trainerfics by now, but I really liked the idea so I ran with it. I hope I manage to keep it going without it becoming 'generic trainerfic #n'.

Since I probably failed to get this across, this is a few months after Red/Leaf beat the pokemon league and a few hours before the eruption of the volcano on cinnabar. Yes I know Red/Leaf calmed the Marowak spirit, I forgot until now so I'll just say it got angry again.

Apologies for any obvious errors, I wrote it very early in the morning. I did proofread it but I also did that early in the morning so I may not have caught everything. Further apologies for the lack of description, I couldn't really make it feel well-placed in the action scene I decided to start with. I'll do description next chapter.

Also pokemon capitalization, have I got it right? I'm thinking it's lowercase firstletter when refering to a species (ie. 'the ursaring') and upper when refering to a specific pokemon (ie. 'Ursaring'). Is that correct?

Oh and there's a little violence and a few non-violence-related accidents. Hence the PG-13. I think that's the right rating, I'll change it if told otherwise. Hope it doesn't offend (either because of aforementioned violence or because of my own lack of skill at writing :x)

To Anywhere, Chapter 1

Misdreavus screeched as it dived in front of its trainer, trying to protect the pale girl. The marowak's bone club simply went through it and Marion scrambled to the side to avoid it, getting to her feet then getting back as quickly as she could toward the stairwell. Either there was an enraged Marowak ghost on every floor or this one in particular was chasing her. Neither was good, the pokemon was untouchable by any of hers and the methods of calming sprits that were used in Ecruteak weren't working at all.

No wonder Mr. Fuji had been so particular about wanting Morty to come and hadn't been happy with sending a mere gym trainer into the tower, the ghost was ready to kill. Every ghost she'd helped deal with before back in Ecruteak had been simply a prankster. But Morty was a gym leader, he couldn't just leave town on such short notice and if this ghost was hurting people (if the young trainer herself was any example, it was certainly trying its best) then it couldn't just be left until a convenient time came.

In hindsight, it was her own fault for agreeing to do this in the first place. She had been warned several times, given more warnings than she really should have needed to realize that this was way too big for her to deal with. She dashed up the stairs to the next floor, Misdreavus following close behind and Abra periodically teleporting to keep up. She couldn't hear the Marowak but she knew it was there. It had been chasing her since she got into the tower, it wouldn't just stop now.

She recalled Misdreavus, there didn't look to be any weaker ghosts to worry about up here and it couldn't do a thing against the marowak, and scanned the floor, noticing there was no staircase to be seen anywhere.

"Huh, did I make it to the top already?" She whispered to herself as she tried to catch her breath. The air tasted strange and the coldness of it made her throat ache. She began to look around, searching for something while she could before the Marowak's ghost returned. She had been told to look for something odd if nothing worked, that if the usual methods couldn't calm the spirit of a pokemon then there most be something that needed fixing.

(Of course, she had also been told to use the abra to return if she was at any point out of her depth but this was now a matter of pride. She didn't want to make the gym look bad just because some ghost wanted to beat her up.)

This floor was a lot more open than the previous ones had been. There were graves scattered around but they were mostly just small crosses jammed into the floor - probably for lost pokemon or pokemon whose bodies could not be brought to the tower. It would be a lot of work to carry any but the lightest pokemon up this high, a pokeball wouldn't carry them if they were dead.

Being careful not to stand on any of the delicate crosses - there was enough upheaval being caused in the lower levels by the recent work to turn the Pokemon Tower into a radio station for Kanto, she didn't want to contribute to the disrespect - she searched every corner. If she didn't find something here that meant she'd missed something on a previous floor, meaning she'd have to go back and double check every other floor with that Marowak chasing her.

Once she found a clue, she instantly wished she hadn't. She fell to her knees, only just managing to avoid throwing up and instead gagging before bursting into a coughing fit. Corpses rarely affected her too much, she had worked with the dead since before she could clearly remember, but this one was truly awful. The Marowak was only recognizable by its size and by the fact that she had, within the last few hours, learned quite well what marowaks looked like. Its head and skull helmet were missing, bitten or maybe clawed off at the neck. Its lower right arm had seen a similar fate.

Trying to forget the sight, she turned away. She didn't think it would be the body that was the problem, a corpse being torn at was probably annoying, yes, but it wasn't really a problem that could keep an enraged spirit fighting with so much gusto. There had to be something else. Before she could get the image out of her mind, she caught a movement in the corner of her eye. The bone club came down at her head and she caught it with little effort. If this was the ghost then the ghost had become a lot smaller. Lifting the club up, she brought the cubone to eye level. As she'd thought, it wasn't going to release the club she easily, clinging to it and trying to kick at the young trainer's face.

"Wow, how long has it been since you've eaten?" She whispered, ignoring its attempts to attack her and talking more to herself than to the pokemon who wouldn't understand a word. The cubone was just skin and bones and not even much of that. Forgetting the marowak's ghost momentarily, she held the tiny pokemon by the shoulders and pulled it away from the club, placing the weapon by her feet and shifting her hand so the pokemon couldn't bite or scratch her too badly as she held it. With her free hand, she went through her bag - she was sure she had some of the food she'd packed for the train journey left. Her hand rested on some sandwiches wrapped in foil. She pulled one out and waved it in front of the cubone's face only to have half of it torn away before she managed to make it clear that she was giving the cubone the sandwich anyway.

Its helmet slid around on its head as it ate - it was a little too big - and Marion realized what had happened and sighed with relief, it settled her stomach a little knowing that the corpse wasn't half-eaten. She knelt down and placed the cubone back on the ground, holding its club under her arm so it couldn't take it back and hit her.

Trying to get the cubone to eat the other half of the sandwich, Marion poked it with the bread. It backed away, refusing to take it until she finally put it down and retracted her hand. She had a theory about why the marowak's ghost wouldn't leave, but testing it for sure would involve hurting the cubone (which she didn't want) and probably, if she was right, her own death at the marowak's hands (which she also didn't want). If it had wanted her out, it could have easily chased her out. It had appeared behind her when she was far enough away from the door to make running for it not an option and had chased her all the way up here. She could have gotten out with Abra's help, but the marowak probably didn't know that. Had it been trying to make sure she found the cubone? The fact that it had also been trying to kill her made this less likely, but it was always possible that it was trying to scare her into carrying on.

"Maybe you're the problem then..." She began, tearing the second sandwich into a few chunks and laying them of the ground, each one a little closer to her. Hungriness temporarily forced the creature to ignore its caution and it snatched up all of the pieces, running a few feet away with them and eating just out of Marion's reach. Marion laughed, she hadn't expected him to just gather all of them. She fumbled around in her bag again, taking an apple from it and placing it in front of her. With no food left in her bag for any germs on the club to get onto, she put the club safely away in her bag.

As soon as it had finished the second sandwich, the cubone ran for the apple and Marion quickly scooped it up as it did. For a second it did nothing, looking between the trainer and the apple, trying to work out if being around the former was worth the latter, until it relaxed a little and proceeded to bite off half the apple as Marion checked to see if it was hurt. It had quite a few cuts and bruises, she had been expecting that. The recent work on the lower floors had caused a lot of problems on the higher ones, the tower was weak and there had probably been a lot of falling debris from the old, weak ceiling until the Marowak's reappearance had stopped the work. The really worrying thing was a short but very deep cut on its left side. It looked to have been caused by a falling rock as all its smaller cuts likely were but it was very concerning because the Marowak had prevented the work from going ahead over a week ago now, meaning that the tiny pokemon had had the cut for a long time. If it had become infected then it could be pretty bad.

"Come on, I'll get you fixed up." She said as soothingly as was possible when the cubone, having finished the apple, was clawing at her hands. She adjusted her hold on it , holding against her with its small arms behind its back in one hand on its head turned away from her with the other, avoiding touching the cut. If she hurt it, even accidentally, and her hunch was right then the marowak ghost would be on her within seconds. Instead of having Abra teleport them out, she went down the stairs to show the marowak that she wasn't harming the cubone. Even two floors down the marowak was nowhere to be seen. Maybe her hunch had been right after all. After a while, the cubone seemed to realize that it wasn't going to be hurt and stopped struggling and Marion in turn freed its arms and head, holding it more gently.

It wasn't until she was at the second floor, full of boxes equipment for the planned radio tower, that the thought of a grave marker for the marowak crossed her mind. She hadn't seen the ghost but it would help ensure that the spirit found rest. She found a place where the graves hadn't yet been cleared and set the cubone down, holding one of its small arms with one hand to make sure it didn't try to run away. She fumbled in her bag again and the cubone perked up, Marion could almost see its eyes twinkling behind the skull it wore.

"Not food, sorry." She said, producing two pencils and a hair tie. She fumbled with them until they formed a crude-looking cross and stuck it between two floor stones. It would have to do.

Suddenly, she heard voices from the floor below. She didn't recognise them but she had been a long time, maybe Mr. Fuji had sent someone in to look for her. She could hear people coming up the stairs.

"Hah, that thing gave us so much trouble just a few months ago, who'd have thought it would prove so helpful?"

"The equipment here should be perfect and with that marowak around no-one dares guard it! If we can get the stuff here we won't need Johto's radio tower!"

These weren't the kind of people Marion wanted to be confronting. With no idea what to do, she grabbed Cubone and hid behind one of the larger boxes. Abra teleported beside her, reminding her of its presence. She peeked out from behind the box, seeing two people in black uniforms. Cubone growled and tried to break out of her arms, struggling harder when Marion tried to calm it.

"Shh, shh." She whispered, stroking its helmet. The uniformed men were far bigger than either of them, and Marion wasn't short. They were carrying pokeballs too. Marion's own pokemon consisted of Misdreavus, a kakuna and a spearow. Abra wasn't hers and couldn't do anything but teleport anyway and Cubone was tiny and already injured. It didn't matter whether confrontation was a fist fight or a pokemon battle, she'd lose for sure. It would be best to teleport out with Abra and then tell the police.

Except Cubone didn't seem to be thinking along the same lines. It struggled free and leapt from Marion's arms, launching itself at the closest robber with a growl that might have been terrifying from something more than a foot tall. It hadn't even taken its club, instead slamming into the thief with its shoulder. The small pokemon's target was knocked off balance but that was all and he quickly recovered as his partner snatched the cubone out of the air by the arm on its hurt side before it managed to land and the pokemon gave out a loud wail, the sound echoing in its helmet.

Marion couldn't just leave it. If she had no other reason then the marowak's ghost would probably return and the cubone wouldn't trust humans enough to make calming and helping it as easy as it had been for her. Besides, Marion had already developed a liking for the tiny pokemon. She had a soft spot for small, cute things and she wasn't about to let them hurt it. She took Cubone's club from her bag and ran at the burglar who was holding the small pokemon, smacking the club into the side of his head and catching Cubone when he dropped it in surprise.

The burglar seemed annoyed, swearing and holding his head just above his ear where the tall girl had hit him but was not by any means beaten.

"Little brat!" He snarled. Marion's eyes widened as he grabbed her neck and lifted her from the ground, pinning her against the wall, she hadn't really thought this through at all. She struggled but without much success, only really managing to make it harder for herself to breathe. She dropped the club and clung to Cubone with both arms, making sure that no part of it that the helmet didn't protect was exposed.

The first punch was to her stomach and winded her and the second was to her face, the force of it pushing the frame of her glasses into her face and knocking her head back against the wall. The robber dropped her and she sat for a moment where she fell, trembling as she tried to move back closer to the wall, blood trickling down her cheeks and the sides of her head where her glasses had cut her.

"Any more surprises?" The thief who Cubone had attacked shouted, punctuating the word 'more' with a kick at Marion's arms, trying to get her to release the pokemon. Marion dudn't ansewr and the thief kicked her again. This time, her grip loosened and Cubone struggled free and bit at the thief's ankle, its tiny, sharp teeth tearing into the skin. The thief yowled, more in surprise than pain, snatching up the cubone and wrapping a single hand around the tiny pokemon's neck, Marion bit her lip, grabbing the club a second time and swinging it into the robber's shin over and over until the thief grabbed her long hair and lifted her by it, forcing her back up to her feet. His partner grabbed the club and bent her wrist back, trying to take it from her.

Until a second bone smacked into the side of his chest with a lot more force than Marion had managed, knocking him off his feet and sending him skidding across the floor. His partner dropped the trainer and the cubone in surprise, turning to the new threat. Marion struggled into a sitting position, scooping up Cubone once again and clinging to it

"Abra..." She struggled to say, shaking uncontrollably. "We're going."

The marowak turned to the second thief as the first got back to his feet. Cubone turned to look at the marowak ghost, making a soft wail as Abra teleported them out.

The sunlight was bright outside the tower as Marion fell in a heap outside Mr. Fuji's home. Abra had teleported back inside to its owner.

"It's okay." She said to the cubone despite still shaking herself, stroking its helmet and trying to grin at it without moving her cheeks as the old man unlocked the door and dashed outside to make sure that the young gym trainer had made it back in one piece. "Safe now, it's okay."

IceDragon2439
February 26th, 2008, 05:39 PM
Actually, I thought this was quite good. This is different and I like it. It is a good start to a probably even better story and I can't wait to read more. I only saw two mistakes and they're in the same sentence:


The 29th paragraph: Marion didn't answer and the thief kicked her again.

And one more: The 19th paragraph: She didn't recognize them but she had been a long time, maybe Mr. Fuji had sent someone in to look for her.

That's all that I see at the moment but I'll go through it if you ever want me to, I don't mind =)

Pague
February 27th, 2008, 06:55 AM
Chapter 2

"Are you sure you don't need to go to the hospital?" Mr Fuji asked, concerned. Marion, calmer now but still trembling, tried to check the cuts on her face with a hand mirror. Without her glasses on it was a futile effort. After washing the blood off her face, though, they didn't feel as bad. They still stung and it was annoying not being able to see a thing, Mr Fuji had taped her glasses back together but she couldn't wear them until she had put a dressing on the cuts.

"I'll be fine, it's not that deep. Can't see a thing right now but I'll bet it looks a lot worse than it is. I'm more worried about the robbers, the marowak's ghost... I think it could have really injured them."

Mr. Fuji shook his head.

"I called the police, they'll be heading in there now. Judging by what you've told me, though, I'd say that Marowak stopped fighting once Cubone here was safe. It's resting again." The old man said, fixing a dressing to the cut in Cubone's side. Marion finished putting plasters on her face and put her glasses over them, checking again in her mirror. It didn't look quite as silly with the glasses on as she thought it would. Cubone, clambering off the chair Mr. Fuji had left it on, tugged at the hem of her skirt and Marion lifted the small pokemon onto her lap.

"Resting again?" She inquired, wrapping her arms loosely around the cubone. Mr. Fuji nodded.

"You're from Johto so you may not have heard but a few months ago a group called Team Rocket was causing a lot of trouble up here. That Marowak was one of their victims, I'm sad to say. I think died protecting its child." He sighed, motioning to Marowak. "I don't think that the kid you have there is the same child, it seems too small. But since then it's been looking after all of the little ones in there. It hasn't been violent in a long time, though, not since that kid calmed it down. Poor thing must have really needed help if Marowak's spirit was that angry."

Mr. Fuji stopped talking and turned to pay attention to his Abra. Marion stroked the small pokemon's skull helmet gently. It had curled up into a tight ball on her lap, making soft whining sounds as it slept.

"Is it hurt badly?" She asked Mr. Fuji after a while. The old man shook his head.

"I may not be as pretty as the nurse in the pokemon centre, but I like to think I still know how to fix up pokemon." He said, laughing. "Thing'll be right as rain after a few days."

For a while neither of them said anything, Mr. Fuji giving food to his Abra and Marion continuing to stroke the sleeping cubone.

"...may I take it with me?" She finally asked. Mr Fuji laughed again.

"Lass, last time I checked people just caught the pokemon instead of asking permission."

"No." Marion said, shaking her head. "I don't really want to catch him, he's not a ghost. I just want to find him a home. He can't stay in the tower anymore."

"They're sending the pokemon from the tower to the safari zone, last I heard." Mr Fuji said. "But I don't see the harm in you trying. Thing might like Johto."

"In that case," Marion said, trying to stand and put her bag over her shoulder without disturbing the sleeping pokemon and somehow managing. "I have a train to catch tonight. Thank you for your hospitality."

"It was nice to meet you." Mr Fuji said as the gym trainer left.

---

Lucy Linden rode her bicycle down the small hill as fast as she could manage, building up speed. She was energetic normally but today she had something to be excited about. She was going to go to Pallet Town tomorrow. Her father had pulled some strings, she was going to get a charmander and call it Inferno. She was going to get all eight badges and beat the elite four and maybe find herself a rival because that would be cool. She was going to catch every pokemon and raise them all to be as strong as they could be and Lucy and Inferno the charizard would be even more famous than Red.

Cinnabar didn't have much in the way of stores but it had an incredible market. Lucy loved the market, it was loud and lively and for being only a few inches above four foot tall and a terrible liar the girl was pretty good at forcing people to lower their prices for her.

She was buying things that she needed but had forgotten to buy sooner. It had really not been her fault she'd forgotten, no-one had told Lucy until now that even away from home she would still need to wash her hair and brush her teeth and so she hadn't seen any need to take toothpaste or shampoo. And apparently a bag full of chocolate bars wasn't good enough food so she needed something more nutritious.

"Ehh, how lame..." she whined at the apples as the seller tied the bag of fruits for her. Despite her complaints she placed it cheerfully into the basket on her bicycle. That was everything.

The ground shifted violently but briefly, knocking Lucy and bike to the ground and knocking items off stalls. Lucy shrugged it off relatively quickly, earthquakes were not at all uncommon. She stood, dusting off her knees, then hopped back onto her bicycle and headed back home.

She didn't make it there.

The earth shook again, far more violently. It made the previous tremor seem like nothing. Cycling uphill, Lucy was knocked from her bicycle and the shaking took both her and bicycle skidding slowly down the hill. Lucy was suddenly very glad the parents made her wear so much protective gear. If they hadn't that would have stripped all the skin off her arms. Then, over the sound of rumbling, came the first crash of slate. A single roof tile shattered on the ground and then all hell broke loose.

She screamed for help as roof tiles and chunks of brick rained down from above, but anyone who could hear her over the ruckus was preoccupied getting themselves or their families out of the houses. Lucy liked to cycle in the empty allies to avoid traffic, no matter how much she was warned about it, and it meant no-one could help her. A large chunk of brick smacked into her head, the bicycle helmet saving her from certain death. Her groceries were not so lucky, a pool of crushed apple and shampoo forming around the carrier bag. The girl curled into a ball, screaming and cowering until a particularly large chunk of debris, about ten bricks still cemented together, stuck her. She heard a sickening crack but passed out before her mind had time to register anything other than a sharp pain in her right arm.

When she woke up, everything was white and cool. Her mother was squeezing her left hand and her stepfather was stood above them both.

"Hey mom." She said with a weak smile "We're going to Pallet today, right?"

Her mother shook her head slowly, stroking the girl's cheek with her other hand. Lucy tried to put her own free hand on top of her mother's.

And nothing happened.

As quickly as she could with the painkillers numbing her so much, she looked over her shoulder. There was nothing there. Below her shoulder there was nothing at all.

"Sweetie..." Her mother began, trying to find the words. "...they had to amputate it. They cut it off."

Lucy's eyes widened. She turned onto her back and stared at the ceiling, refusing to cry.

"We have to go to Saffron, find a new home. Your Aunt and Uncle are taking you to Azalea Town with them once you're discharged. The fresh air will make you heal faster."

Lucy wasn't listening. She didn't care. That stupid volcano, that stupid fire, had just stolen all her dreams. Inferno had betrayed her and she hadn't even met it yet. A kid with one arm could never compare to Red, especially without a pokemon.