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Weavyrn007
April 2nd, 2008, 09:27 PM
Icy Will
Rated [PG-13] for mild violence, adult and dark themes

Intro:
This story chronicles the story of a young man named Joe and his attempt at becoming a professional Pokemon trainer and hunting for the murderer of his parents. He is a tall kid with very short hair. Though he is poor, he is still very much into fashion and never lets a day pass without putting plenty of effort into his fresh outfits and keeps his shoes immaculate. The prologue gives a brief back story after he graduates from Sandgem Pokemon Academy at sixteen and then chapter one kicks off the main story which begins when he begins school at the Pokemon University of Sunnyshore. The setting starts in Sinnoh that has been modified to be more of an actual country similar to the US. The Prologue is written in the third person but the subsequent chapters are written from Joe's point of view. I'll try to post a new chapter every few days even though my chapters are a bit long but I hope you enjoy!

Prologue

Our protagonist has just graduated from Sandgem Pokemon Academy with high honors and was accepted on a full scholarship to the to post-secondary Pokemon trainer school, the Pokemon University of Sunnyshore. To rewarded his diligent work, his parent have decided to take him on a ski trip in Snowpoint City. Joe also hopes to catch his first Pokemon which is a requirement for the first day of class at the university.

"Joe...Joe...Joe! Wake up! You were supposed to be up thirty minutes ago! If you don't hurry we're gonna miss out flight to Snowpoint!" Joe's mother, Alice, yells trying to energize her son.

"Why do we have to leave so early? I wanna sleep some more so that I'll be ready to ski when we get to Snowpoint." Joe replies while showing his sluggishness. He manages to crawl out of the bed and heads to the bathroom to get ready for the flight.

"Don't worry honey, you'll have plenty of time to sleep on the plane. The flight from Sandgem to Snowpoint is five hours long, so just let me know when you're ready," Alice tells her son Joe.

After Joe is ready him and his parents load their luggage into the taxi and head off to the Sandgem Regional Airport to catch their flight. Once they arrive at the airport they board the plane and get comfortable for the long flight. Joe quickly reclines his chair and dozes off before the plane even hits the runway. Unfortunately he has to wake up to put his chair in the upright position but goes right back to sleep when the plane reaches maximum altitude.

The gentle roar of the jet engine encourages Joe's deep slumber to continue until the plane lands. Of course things never go as planned, as the plane flies over route 217, a massive thunderstorm kicks in. The pilot picks up the speaker and makes an announcement, "attention all passengers, attention all passengers. There is a thunderstorm ahead that we cannot avoid. We will be experiencing some slight to moderate turbulence along with some sounds of thunder that may disturb you. Please remain calm and try to keep your children calm because the situation is completely under control."

This announcement wakes Joe up out of his seeming eternal sleep. He looks around under the influence of his delirium but finally snaps to. Not hearing anything that the pilot said, Joe is full of questions for his mother, "Mom what was that guy talking about? Why is the plane shaking like this? What's all that noise? Why do you look so nervous? Why is everybody looking at me like that? Mom?"

"Everything is okay. We're just passing through a thunderstorm and there's a bit of turbulence." Alice nervously replies to her son to keep him calm.

"Oh okay, I guess I'll have a quick snack because I AM FAMISHED!" Joe exclaims as he digs through his bag for the sandwich that he packed for this exact occasion. "After I finish this sandwich I can head back to sleep. Could you wake me up on our descent so I can see the mountains?" Joe asks his mother.

But before his mother could even answer him something apparently goes wrong as a huge bolt of lightning strikes the plane with a ferocious impact. The entire plane jerks back and forth as the pilot attempts to regain control. But before he can manage to get the plane straightened up the engines stall and the oxygen masks fall from their compartments. The pilot begins to make another announcement, but he is clearly shaken this time, "...A-attention all...all passengers, we um...are ex-experiencing some uh, 'technical difficulties' at th-the current moment. Please put your oxygen masks on as we prepare for an emergency landing. Most importantly please remain calm.......WHAT THE HECK IS THAT!" The pilot begins to panic and loses all control of the plane.

After hearing that announcement Joe snatches his window open to see what the commotion is about. Before he could get a good look outside his mother grabbed him and put his oxygen mask on. He was able to catch a glimpse outside and could see a large yellow bird with lighting crackling from its body with every beat of its wings. Joe was absolutely speechless as he knew the identity of the Pokemon Zapdos, but he never imagined that he would ever see it. As Joe looked on in awe the giant thunder bird looked over and made direct eye contact with him. Zapdos lets out a shrill cry and lets loose with a huge Thunderbolt that strikes the plane directly in the fuselage. A huge explosion razes most people in the front of the plane and Joe blacks out before everything is said and done with.

When Joe comes to he finds himself partially buried in snow and a fearsome blizzard whipping snow everywhere. "Ugh...where am I, there's never snow in Sandgem. What just happened? Mom? Dad?" The confused teen looks around to find no one. The only thing he can see is white, white snow, white sky, white ground, and white everything. Apparently the crash had jolted his memory and he couldn't recall any recent events. "I guess I should try to find some civilization around here." But as Joe attempts to raise himself to his feet, he feels a sharp pain shoot down both of his legs. All of a sudden he remembers that he was in horrid plane crash and begins to wonder where his parents are.

He begins crawling around screaming for his parents who didn't make it out of the crash alive. After dragging himself a few yards, the infinite white begins to turn colors, green to be specific. The green becomes larger and much clearer and before he knows it, Joe is face to face with a giant Abomasnow that is not happy to see him, "ABOMA!" The Pokemon bellows as he prepares to unleash his fury upon the injured teen. Joe attempts to utter a plea of mercy, but before he could even open his the angry Abomasnow picks him up and tosses him ten feet.

The Abomasnow rushes toward Joe to deal a fatal blow to the unlucky teen, but before it reaches Joe a pink blur crosses in front of it and it falls on its back. Joe looks around to see what saved him, but could see nothing but white and a fainted Abomasnow. An odd silence fills the air and his rescuer shows itself from behind the unconscious Abomasnow, a pink Sneasel. "Did you save me from the plane?" Joe asks the Sneasel. It nods its head in confirmation and then motions toward Snowpoint City. Not wanting to question the native Pokemon's judgment, Joe agrees and Sneasel takes him to the hospital.

Joe is checked into the hospital and his grandparents fly out immediately to meet him. Three days later Joe finds out that everyone in the plane crash was killed with the exception of him. Though Joe breaks down over the loss of his parents, he hides well knowing that he needed to finish physical therapy so that he would be healthy enough to start school in the fall.

A few days later Joe is released with his grandparents to Sandgem where he will rest and complete his physical therapy. Sneasel decides that she needs a break from the endless blizzards and joins Joe as his first partner. Regardless of his extreme fortune, Joe is unable to shake the fact that Zapdos killed his parents...

Chapter 1 - University Junior Year: First Catch

BEEP! BEEP! BEEP! BEEP!

"Joe...get the alarm...can't move..." my roommate said to me in a lazy tone. You may not guess from his demeanor, but this guy is actually the top of our class, just barely edging me out at every single chance. He's a bit taller than me with medium length brown hair that he never brushes which explains why I always have to wake up before him.

"Screw that...not going to class today...so just turn off the alarm its closer to you," I reply to him. We weren't always this lazy though, as a matter of fact this is a new occurrence. Me and Chris just moved to an apartment off-campus this school year. We actually had to put the alarm in the living room so someone would have to get up to turn it off. The bad part of this is that the junior is the beginning of practicals and its very necessary to show up to class. I then remember that we have our capture practicals today and we'll fail if we don't show up. "Yo we have a practical today...really need to get moving."

"Set the snooze please..." Chris begs and I comply for his sake but drag myself out of bed and begin to prepare my outfit. I figure I need to look extra good for my practical because they record them and keep them on our trainer records. I then pluck the tags from a brand new polo, grab a stylish pair of jeans, and then take my fresh pair of loafers from the closet. After I eat and get ready I see Chris at the door ready to roll in a pair of athletic shorts and a plain tee. In case you're wondering how I can afford expensive clothes is through my parents' life insurance claim and even though Chris' parents are well off, he prefers ease over looks.

"NOT IT!" I scream as Chris opens the door, we do this every morning to see who has to drive to school and today I don't have to. So we load into his old school Camaro and arrive at the university in about twenty minutes. We hop out and hurry to class because the best part is watching our "Catching Techniques I" professor walk into class. Most students call her Dr. Reya but I prefer to call her lovely, beautiful, gorgeous, and various other terms used for describing attractive women. So me and Chris sit down in our usual spots and watch Dr. Reya walk in her short skirt with the lab coat covering it and her silky brown hair draping over one of her crystal green eyes. She calls roll and then gives a boring lecture on advanced catching techniques. Chris fell asleep and I nudge him as Dr. Reya gives us our assignment.

"Today we will be having our very first practical and as you probably heard from upper level students, you will be required to capture a Pokemon and present it to me in my office before 5:00 p.m. It is currently 9:00 a.m. which means you have eight hours to make your catch, if you have any questions come by my office. I highly recommend that you travel with at least one other person so that things don't get dangerous," Dr. Reya explains to us very thoroughly. Naturally me and Chris decide to head out together.

Luckily for us there is a large area close to campus that is always crawling with wild Pokemon. We decide to walk along until we see something interesting. The hot Sunnyshore sun starts to have its effect on me as I lose focus of the task at hand and can only concentrate on on the sweat dripping down my forehead. All of a sudden I hear a very familiar voice call out a very familiar phrase "GO, KADABRA!" Chris yells as he releases his prized Pokemon from the Pokeball that he decorated with black smoke seals. I turn to see a small herd of Mareep grazing and Kadabra ready to battle them all. One brave Mareep steps forward to battle Kadabra while the rest cower behind it. "Kadabra, use Psybeam!" Chris exclaims to his Kadabra which does so without haste and strikes the little electric sheep with brutal force. The Mareep stumble around and is apparently confused. Chris tosses an ultra ball at the Mareep and it puts up little struggle as the Pokeball locks into place. "Yeah I caught a Mareep! You need to hurry up and find something Joe so we can go get our grade. If you were paying attention you could've caught one of those Mareep!" Too bad for me the rest had fled during that attack from Kadabra. So Chris calls his Kadabra back and we continue on our trek

We continued walking along and came to this large clearing. Next thing I know I end up flat on my face, I bound to my feet to that I had tripped over a Budew! Without second thought I grab the Pokeball of the partner that saved my life, "GO SNEASEL!" My pink Sneasel sparkles as she's released from her Pokeball. Not wanting this opportunity to pass a quickly dish out orders "Sneasel, Quick Attack!" The Budew is struck with a fearsome blow but bounces back and strikes back with a powerful Absorb. "Sneasel, come back! Pokeball go!" After taking that attack i saw plenty of anger in Sneasel's face so I decided to call her back before she did something rash. After the pokeball locks around Budew I have a brief celebration and me and Chris decide to head to Dr. Reya's office to show her our results.

When we arrive at Dr. Reya's office the line stretches all the way around the corner. The reason is that there are over 200 students in our class and we have to review all catches and failed catches. All of the students have automated cameras that follow them whenever we have a practical. Only professors are allowed to view the tapes first and then they download them to our trainer profiles for further viewing by the students. As I stand in the hallway bored out of my mind I see someone gracefully stride around the corner, it was none other than Grace. Grace has been the object of my affection since we first met and became class partners in Battle Techniques I. Me and Sneasel used to mash her Bulbasaur into the ground on a regular basis. Even though I had the advantage a win feels great regardless.

"Hey Grace, how'd it go?" I ask her while doing my best to maintain my debonair composure, but her wavy jet black hair, dark brown eyes, long lean legs, and flawless smile always make that a difficult task.

"I got an 'A' but the Doc made sure to chew me up like a perfectly grilled steak. I caught a Buizel, but she told me I shouldn't have had such a hard time considering the advantage I had," Grace explained to me. I had a hard time paying attention because I was more focused on how her luscious lips formed words than what the words actually were. "She's always rough but I'm sure you'll be able to woo her with you charm, good luck and call me when you're done!" She winks at me and carries on with a brisk pace.

After a while Chris had his review and then it was my turn to face the beautiful wrath of Dr. Reyas. "So Mr. Joe, what do you have for me today?"

I gave a few seconds to try to think of some clever response but nothing came to mind so I was forced to look like a little school boy who's talking to his friend's older sister, "Uh...I uh...I caught a Budew," I struggled so much to get that sentence out and I thought it was over but apparently Dr. Reyas had more in store for me.

"After reviewing your tape I noticed that though your technique was flawless you were forced to call you Sneasel back because you haven't trained it properly. She's very aggressive, but you haven't taught her how to control that aggression. If you don't teach her better, it'll end up hurting you in a real battle. As I said your technique was flawless just work on controlling your partners, DISMISSED!"

I leave with a new partner and enter some extreme training. Just to inform you, our senior comprehensive happens to be a huge single elimination tournament where the top three trainers are allowed to enter the Pokemon League of Sinnoh without any badge requirement. On my current rate I'm a shoe in, but there's no way I can slack up because I have to get strong enough to travel freely across the planet and find Zapdos.

bobandbill
April 2nd, 2008, 11:28 PM
Well, it's not bad - a descent plot idea, and the events aren't bad either. This does need a bit more work however.

The main thing is that the work seems a little bit rushed. Slow down with what you are saying. Use shorter sentences, and make sure that what you say is clear. Along with the shorter sentences, you could add in more description and slow things down a little - occassionally it does seem that you are hitting off with the events one after the other, as if you can't wait to get to the next part, or have a very short time to tell this story.
"Joe...Joe...Joe! Wake up! We have to hurry or we're gonna miss our flight to Snowpoint!" yells Joe's mother Alice trying to get her son out of bed.

For instance - this is rushed -'yells Joe's mother Alice trying to get her son out of bed' - at least needs a comma somewhere, to slow things down.
"Mom...do I have to go..." Joe sluggishly asks.
If he asked, wouldn't there be a question make in the dialogue? Also, hence to say that the present tense didn't really suit the prologue - did feel a bit clumsy.
You worked so hard at the academy and we worked so hard at our jobs so you could have this opportunity, we just wanted to do something nice for you before you went off to university." Alice explains.
Even Alice seems to have caught up on this frantic pace. She is talking without any pauses. Read that dialogue out - sounds a bit fast. Slow things down - make sentences far shorter, and on dialogue - read it out to see if it makes sense - a useful hint.

"All right I'm getting up, did you remember to pack my pokeballs mom?" Joe asked his mother.
Pokemon and Pokeballs are capitlised in all cases.
"No, I clipped them to your belt because I know you'd want to get started as soon as we landed." Alice says
Agaion, the 'fast-talking' issue.


Now here, things move WAY too fast...

Joe and his family board the plane and it takes off at 5:15 a.m. as scheduled and Joe dozes off with the purr of the jet engine in the background. All of a sudden the pilot engages the loud speaker to make an announcement. "Attention all passengers, we will be experiencing a little bit of turbulence for the next few......what the heck is that!?!?!?" All of a sudden the engines shut off and the oxygen masks fall down. During all of this commotion Joe snaps awake and jerks his window open to see what's going on outside. His mother grabs him and puts his mask on. Once its on Joe looks out of the window just in time to a bright yellow bird with lightning crackling with each beat of its wings. All of sudden a bolt of lightning strikes the plane and Joe blacks out.

When Joe finally comes to he finds himself outside in the snow during the middle of a blizzard. With no clue how he got there or where he is he stays put. He figures that the plane crashed but that can't explain how he got so far away from the wreckage. Though thoroughly confused and hurting all over Joe attempts to drag himself to his feet so he won't freeze to death. That's when he realizes both of his legs are broken, then much more grim realization happens when a giant Abomasnow walks up to him. The enraged pokemon grabs Joe and throws him a good ten feet and seems that he wants to hurt him more. Then out of nowhere a pink blur streaks in front of the Abomasnow and it falls over. Before Joe could even begin to understand what happened, his pink rescuer appears before him. It was none other than a wild Sneasel doing its part to protect travelers. The Sneasel attempts to grab Joe but he resists and begins screaming, "You have to find my parents! My parents were on the plane too! I know you saved me, but you have to save them too!"

Firstly, 5:15 am seems a somewhat random and unnesserary fact to give us.
This jumped straight from the previous scene to the place... already flying... to Zapdoes to lucky survival to encounter with a shiny Sneasal (which seems very unlikly - beware of Gary-Stus - don't make that character get too many rare and shiny Pokemon - makes it too unrealistic) - and then Joe tells Sneasal to save everyone else too... in two paragraphs. Far too quick and all over the place. A long chapter could be made out of this, and there isn't much description to show us what this is really like.

So basically, so things down a LOT. Don't rush this fic - take the time to proof-read and make the pace nice and steady. Also - show, don't tell - rather than saying 'this happened, that happened' - show us whow things happened, how quickly, what did people or things or places look like, etc.

The chapter was better than the prologue - it was slower for a start, but again too quick.
Some other things:

"Screw that...not going to class today...so just turn off the alarm it's closer to you," I reply to him.

"Today we will be having our very first practical and as you probably heard from upper classmen,
Classmen seems... awkard there.

Dopn't have much time to point much else out - have to go unfortunately. Just adding - don't use the term 'I' or 'me' too much - it is a bit overused, and describe things in a bit more detail - and slow things down. It will help greatly.

Overall, though not bad - there's promise there. Nice plot - just don't rush with the story and events.

Jak
April 3rd, 2008, 07:38 AM
Decent plot. Starting in Snowpoint is unusual. O_o

This is very rushed, as bobandbill has just told you.

"Mom...do I have to go..." Joe sluggishly asks.

If he's asking, then where's your question mark?

And bobandbill beat me to everything...again. But I'll find something he missed.

"I got an 'A' but the Doc made sure to chew me up like a perfectly grilled steak.

Comma before 'but'.

"No, I clipped them to your belt because I know you'd want to get started as soon as we landed." Alice says

Erm? Shouldn't it be 'knew'?

"All right I'm getting up, did you remember to pack my pokeballs mom?" Joe asked his mother.


I think this would be better off:

"All right, I'm getting up. Did you remember to pack my Pokeballs, mom?" Joe asked his mother.



Anyway, this seems waaaaay too rushed. Slow your rolls, man. Describe what's going on; don't just go from point A to B to C. Just chill. But, I think this will be nice when it is fixed up! Keep working at it. ^^

-Silver

Weavyrn007
April 3rd, 2008, 09:24 AM
Thanks for all the help guys! I think I'm just gonna go ahead and rewrite the prologue and just correct the mistakes of chapter 1. Hopefully I'll be able to repost the prologue and get Chapter 2 up before the end of today. And don't worry about the main character getting too many rare Pokemon, Sneasel's the only shiny that he gets and that's only because I love shiny Sneasel and Weavile for some reason. Anyway thanks again and stay tuned because things get really good after he graduates from the University!

bobandbill
April 3rd, 2008, 12:00 PM
Hopefully I'll be able to repost the prologue and get Chapter 2 up before the end of today.

Don't try to get it done as fast as possible, either. It's best to wait at least a few days between chapters - a week or a bit under that is nice. Gives you more time to proof-read, and there's no deadline anyway, so why rush it?

Post Office Buddy
April 3rd, 2008, 06:25 PM
It seemed to me that you seemed to address the audience at a few points, as if Joe were speaking directly to the reader. I don't know if you really intended this, but if you choose to use this literary technique (I call it the Catcher In The Rye technique lol) then you should make it more uniform throughout your story. If this wasn't your intention, then I suggest you edit out any part where Joe addresses his audience.

Aside from the above mentioned thing, some punctuation errors, and the extremely rushed feeling evident in the story, it is shaping up pretty well. Don't worry too much about the fact that it seems rushed. I, too, have some difficulty preventing my chapters from flying by. Just try to add more description, some more dialogue, and perhaps some breaks between dialogue. This should help make it seem "slower" than it does right now.

Weavyrn007
April 9th, 2008, 12:47 PM
After a very long time I finally finished Chapter 2. Its a bit long but I hope everyone still enjoys it! Please comment, good and bad!

Chapter 2 - Junior Year: Battle Practicals

6 months later...

With my Junior year almost over the only assignment left for the class were the battle practicals. Since my first catch, my Budew has evolved into Roselia, Sneasel is doing better than ever and I added a Scyther to the line-up. Luckily for me, the battle practical was only three versus three or else I would still have a lot of work to do. I'm not sure how Chris' team was going but i wasn't going to worry about because there was only about a one in 300 chance that I would actually have to face him. Though we only get graded on technique, its extremely embarrassing to lose because the battles take place in school stadium and the entire city tends to show up to watch.

There was no drama this morning with the alarm, as a matter of fact I was up a full hour early to prepare my outfit for this soon to be glorious day. I decided to go with my cargo shorts with the blue designer polo with matching shoes and hat. After I put my clothes on I cooked a huge dinner for me and Chris to partake in. We finished eating without even saying a word to each other. Though we are the top two students in our class, everyone is still gifted in every sense of the word. Even though we're both predicted to wipe the floor with any opponent, anything can happen in a Pokemon battle.

There was no game to see who had to drive to school. We drove separately because we may have different ideas on how to celebrate our pending victory, or how to get over the bitter taste of our pending defeat.

I arrive at school and immediately head over to the University Commons to register for my battle. The main room is filled with every single junior and many other people trying to get the first peek at the upcoming battles. As I'm heading towards the line to register, I hear an unfamiliar voice "Mr. Joe! Mr. Joe! Do you think we could have a word with you?" It was this female reporter. She was no doubt attractive as reporters usually are, but she was a bit frantic and didn't seem to be very experienced.

"Yeah I have some spare time, what can I do for you?" I replied to the reporter with a weak attempt to look like i have done this plenty of times before.

"Oooh he leads with a question, so enigmatic. We just want to ask a few quick questions for the news tonight and tomorrow night. First off how many Pokemon have you captured so far?" She asks me in her quick and choppy voice.

"I have three." I tell her quickly. I struggled for more words but none would exit mouth.

"...A man of few words, I like it. I also like the fact that you go for quantity over quality!" She quips back not realizing the error in her statement.

"Um, I think that phrase goes the other way around." I tell her in a supportive tone.

"Oh my gosh! I'm so stupid! Th-this interview is over! I'm ruined!" The reporter says as she completely loses control and rushes away leaving her cameraman struggling with the heavy equipment.

I figured that I would go ahead and register so that I could contemplate my strategy for the battle to come. As I glance around on my way up to registration, I notice people looking at me. They were my classmates, my possible challenger. I remained stoic in my stride and finally reached the the desk with no line and I was greeted with a cheery smile from a sophomore that had volunteered to help out. This isn't at all uncommon because the volunteer student helpers may not get paid for their work, but the front row seats and backstage access to the trainers before their matches is a priceless experience. "Hi! How are you today! You're Joe aren't you?" The girl asks.

"Yes, yes I am, and you are?" I ask out of pure cordiality

"My name is Lisa and I'll be helping you through your registration process. First I'll need you trainer ID so that I can pull up your profile." She asks me.

"It's 883257." I reply subtly.

"All right I have your profile and its showing that you only have three Pokemon. Since the battles will be three on three you'll be battling with Sneasel, Roselia, and Scyther. The first Pokemon must be a double-blind choice so I have to know who you will be leading with, so who will it be?" She inquires with the surprising knowledge of my entire team. I guess the school network has the right to that information.

"I'll be leading with Roselia. Sneasel and Scyther will be my back-ups." I tell her in a commanding tone.

"That's surprising, I expected you to lead with your Sneasel, its so cute and so powerful at the same time! Anyway I have you all registered and ready to go. Your battle is at 4:00 p.m. Due to your ranking in the class, your battle will take place in the main stadium and your opponent will be...Oh my!" She all of a sudden pauses at possibly the most crucial point in her information delivery service.

"What's wrong? Who is it? Who am I battling? What's going on?" I give a quick series questions faster than Bullet Seed.

After a few more moments of looking intensely shocked, she finally gives me the information that i was waiting for. My greatest fear has finally came to fruition as she utters the words that I didn't want to hear at all, she speaks to me with a tone of absolute excitement, "Your opponent will be none other than number one ranked Chris! Oh wow this will be the greatest battle of the day by far!"

"****...mother******...this is unbe-frickin-lievable," I lace the air with a few obscenities upon receiving the news and immediately head out to the fields so that I can get a warm-up for my team.

In the field I begin by going for a jog with everyone which happened to be a terrible idea when I had to carry Roselia. I then decided to practice attacks instead of physical training. This was going good until a stray Ice Shard from Sneasel hit Scyther. They started fighting and then Roselia got into when she tried to break it up. My anxiousness was only making things worse. I finally had enough of this and called everyone back and took them to a Pokemon Center so that they could be ready for the battle.

After a quick heal I head towards the main stadium as it was almost time for me to battle. Before I even got close to the stadium, I could still see hundreds of fans outside tailgating. Some of them yell out to me and I give them a quick pose. I try not to linger for long because I need to be early so that I can confirm my registration and head backstage. I walk in the foyer of the stadium and again see gobs of people all walking around. They are all eager fans trying to get some refreshments before the next match starts. This time I pull my hat down and make a beeline for the confirmation desk so I can hurry and get backstage. After the confirmation I actually grab a snack to ensure I don't faint before my match begins.

When I head through the backstage doors I'm greeted by Lisa again who is my preparation assistant. I remain speechless and noting my nervousness, Lisa does the same. While I'm figuring out how I could possibly take down his Kadabra, Lisa puts some seals on my Pokeballs. I don't interfere with her work. Contrary to my normal views on battling, I was far more worried about winning instead of looking good. Finally after what seemed like years, my name comes on over the loudspeaker and I'm asked to report to the battlefield. "Good Luck," Lisa says to me as I walk towards the door. I give her a silent nod and proceed to the battlefield without losing one bit of my step.

I open up the doors and the crowd begins to go wild. The roar is almost deafening, but my eyes still work perfectly fine and they see my opponent across from me. He took a page from my book today and cleaned himself up. His dress shirt and khakis were both neatly pressed and from a distance could almost hide the excessive confidence in his eyes. He was totally unlike me, he was ready, he wanted to win, he was going to win. Before I could finish sulking in this horrid situation that I had been forced in the commentator came over the loudspeaker to give a briefing for the match.

"Right now we are ready to begin our final battle of the practicals and this one is gonna be doozie! Right now we have the top to trainers of the junior class that also happen to both have a 100% in their Battle Techniques class! These two are both perfect in every single way when it comes to Pokemon! Without further adieu, let's get this battle under way! Upon registering, both competitors were asked to select their first Pokemon so that counter picking would be impossible. Now I ask you battlers, send out your leads!" The announcer commands us and we follow without second thought.

"I got a little surprise for you Joe, GO MARSHTOMP!" The water Pokemon comes out of its Pokeball ready to go. It looks rather tough as I expected from Chris, but as he'll soon find out I have the distinct advantage.

"You never had good luck when it cam to these things Chris," I taunt him as I finally reach my comfort zone, "GO ROSELIA!" Chris looks a bit angered at my luck and is clearly about to make a quick switch.

"Oh we're about to get it started! Roselia versus Marshtomp, this one is obviously one-sided! I wonder what's gonna happen!" The crowd goes nuts as the announcer hypes up something that is typical in Pokemon battling, but I guess that's part of what make it exciting.

Knowing that Chris is not about to leave Marshtomp in to massacred by Roselia I decide to prepare for Roselia to sweep his entire team, "Marshtomp come back, GO PILOSWINE!" The switch was expected, but I didn't expect him to switch to this. I have an advantage but so does he. I haven't did much research on this line of Pokemon so I had no idea what to expect so I go ahead with my initial plan.

"Roselia, use Growth!" I command Roselia and she digs her roots into the grassy stadium ground to absorb nutrients for her supportive attack.

"Oh here we go! Roselia pumped itself up, Marshtomp was switched out for Piloswine, what's gonna happen next I wonder! I think things are about to heat up!"

That announcer's voice annoys me a bit, but that should be some inspiration for me to hurry and finish this match. Since I don't know what to expect from a Piloswine, I hope a confident command can make sure I come out on top, "Roselia let's finish this one off quick, use Energy Ball!"

"Not so fast Mr. Amateur, I'll show you why you got a 'B' in General Knowledge I. Piloswine, Ice Shard!" Chris taunts me far worse than I initially taunted him. I know very well that Ice Shard is a quick move that Roselia is weak to.

"PILO!" Piloswine give his confirmation and sends razor sharp ice particles careening towards Roselia at lightning quick speed. Roselia takes the rough hit, foliage and petal pieces go flying everywhere as she hits the ground.

"Oh wow! Roselia takes a brutal and unexpected blow from Piloswine and crashes to the ground! Will she get up, or is Joe about to call out his second Pokemon!"

Now the announcer is really getting on my nerves. I have to show him and all of naysayers that we're the toughest, "Come on Roselia, we both know you're stronger than that! Get up!" I scream trying to inspire my Pokemon to continue battling. She manages to pull herself up and begins to charge an Energy Ball, "Let's finish this guy Roselia, hit with everything you got!" I bellow in my anger created from that cheap hit Piloswine made on my Pokemon.

"Rose," she let's out a quiet call of understanding and finishes charging and sends the Energy Ball directly at Piloswine. Thanks to that Growth attack she did earlier, the Energy Ball is bigger and faster than it normally is. It makes a direct hit on Piloswine. The husky boar falls on its side and is returned to its Pokeball by Chris.

The announcer then continues his job of hyping the crowd up, though this time he has every reason to be excited, "Oh my goodness! Roselia answer's the question 'can you survive an Ice Shard' with an inquiry of her own, 'can you survive a boosted Energy Ball?' The answer is 'no' because Piloswine is down and Chris is forced to bring out his next Pokemon! Who will it be? Marshtomp? Maybe the one we have yet to see? Let's get back to the match!"

"I underestimated your Roselia Joe. That's a mistake I won't make again. I hope you're ready to wet your pants as you experience true fear on the battlefield. Time to end this! GO ALAKAZAM!" Chris brings out his most trusted Pokemon and in a form I would never expect. I had no idea his Kadabra evolved and now I'm faced with a very arduous task.

The entire crowd grows quiet as the Pokeball erupts with a flash of light and Chris' Alakazam emerges from it. Even the lame announcer is struggling to formulate words to describe the situation. Alakazam stands there and says nothing. He just pierces my very soul with those beady eyes. I know that he can sense the fear in my heart so I try to keep my composure. Just then, the announcer manages to get his thoughts together and blares out, "Oh this is what everybody has been waiting for! Instead of going back to Marshtomp, Chris looks to end this battle right now with his Alakazam! Does Joe's unevolved Pokemon stand a chance against this final form powerhouse?"

Without further hesitation I bark out an order, "Roselia, Energy Ball!" I know that the attack won't come anywhere close to finishing off Alakazam, but any sort of damage will be in my favor.

Chris looks extremely calm as he should considering the type and strength advantage he has. "Alakazam, Psybeam..." Chris commands Alakazam in a lackadaisical and nonchalant tone as if he knew what was about to happen. Alakazam charges up an orange beam of pure psychic energy and sends it tearing through the air. It make contact with Roselia's Energy Ball and sears right through it and cancels it out. The beam hits its target head on and demolishes the little will that was left in Roselia.

The announcer then belts out over the loudspeaker, "Oh my, Roselia is unable to battle!"

I return Roselia to her Pokeball and thank her for a job well done. Bit again Chris doesn't know that I'll still have an advantage in the end. I grab the Pokeball of the newest addition to my team from my belt. I toss it in the air a few times to make a bit of a spectacle. The crowd begins to cheer my name so I know it worked. Now I'm ready to get this battle started. "You may have gotten Roselia, but let's see how you handle my newest Pokemon, go Scyther!"

I hurl the Pokeball into the field and my Scyther leaps out of it, itching for a fight, "SCYTHER! SCY, SCY, SCYTHER!" Scyther shrills out a frightening warcry and slashes the air with its sword-like arms.

Without a second thought Chris makes his move, "Alakazam return, go Marshtomp!" He brings the massive mudbug back out to do battle my Scyther.

"Scyther, use X-scissor!" I command Scyther to use its most powerful attack against Marshtomp. Its sword arms glow green with insect energy and it strikes Marshtomp with all the force it has. The powerful Marshtomp staggers, but does not fall. I need to end this as quickly as possible so that I'll have two Pokemon to battle Alakazam with. "Scyther, again! X-scissor!"

As Scyther rushes towards Marshtomp, Chris prepares an appropriate counterattack, "Marshtomp, wait for it come close and then use Waterfall!" When Scyther is within Marshtomp's reach, it charges will all of its might and scores a direct hit right as Scyther strikes him.

The announcer and crowd both lose control when this happens, "There it goes folks! Both Pokemon strike each other with massive force, and both Pokemon go crashing to the ground!" Both Marshtomp and Scyther were down for the count. "Scyther and Marshtomp are both unable to battle! The score stands at one to one! We know Chris has Alakazam left and we don't know what Joe has left, but I think its pretty safe to assume what it is!" The announcer is right in his assumption if he's thinking Sneasel because she's my only hope.

I reach for my belt with much on my mind. I was stalling, I was thinking what I could possibly do to counter his Alakazam. I had no clue what to do. With a nervous and trembling had, I toss the Pokeball into the arena, "Go Sneasel!"

Sneasel emerges from the Pokeball with a glistening sparkle and doesn't make a single sound. This time their was no taunting; no playing around. We both knew this was going to be a tough adversary to overcome. Despite that, we both knew it was possible however. I could tell exactly what Chris was thinking from the look in his eyes. He was going to treat me like any other opponent, destroy me. If anyone ever has to face off against his favorite Pokemon, the loss was never pretty.

"I wish our battle wasn't so cliche Joe, but I guess that's the way things go," Chris says in a condescending tone. He was trying to make me angry so I couldn't think straight. Too bad I was far too nervous to have room for any more emotion.

I knew that he would want a powerful attack to absolutely decimate Sneasel. As the crowd and announcer remained silent, the battle began with Chris making the first move, "Alakazam, let's show them no mercy just because their friends! Use Calm Mind!" Alakazam levitated in a cross-legged position and began to focus his energy. There was no doubt that a powerful attack was sure to come.

There was no way Sneasel could take out Alakazam in one hit, so I had to make sure that it would happen the next turn, "Sneasel, Swords Dance!" Sneasel begins to do a little jig to increase her strength. Her claws lengthened drastically and got a newfound sheen.

"So you called my Joe, I'm proud of you. Haha, its just too bad your Sneasel won't be around long enough to use that power! Alakazam, Focus Blast!" This is the exact attack that I feared the most. Still in its levitating position, Alakazam began to charge a massive amount of energy. This ranged attack would be my bane. I had to strike fast, before Alakazam could finish charging it.

"Sneasel, don't let him finish charging. Hurry! Hit it with Night Slash!" Sneasel's claws become charged with dark energy and she rushes towards Alakazam. At this point, it seems like time slows to a crawl. I know Sneasel is running as fast as she can, but it seems like she's walking. Alakazam is trying his best to ready that Focus Blast, but it seems as if he's relaxing. Once Sneasel is almost face to face with Alakazam, I see him crack a smile. Chris' famed Pokemon is ready to keep his spotless record. "Sneasel, attack from above!" I command Sneasel anticipating a point blank attack. She bounds into the air and dives towards Alakazam.

Little did I know however, Alakazam wasn't smirking because he was going to win, he smirking in defeat. Sneasel was about to knock him out in one blow before he even had a chance to strike. I realized this just as Sneasel had jumped into the air. "Sneasel, hurry!" I yell to try to make up for my sloppy decision.

"Alakazam, FIRE!" With little time to spare, Alakazam shoots the Focus Blast and connects directly with Sneasel and sends her all the way across the stadium. I run from behind my trainer's box and make a sliding catch right before she hits the ground.

"And with that, Sneasel is unable to battle! Chris wins! What a match, back and forth to the very end! Congratulations to both trainers for the best match of the series!" The announcer concludes the series and I clutch Sneasel in an attempt to get her to the Pokemon Center.

I had no trouble getting through the crowd, they could all sense the disappointment in my demeanor and didn't bother me. When I arrive to the Pokemon Center, they check out Sneasel and conclude that there are no serious injuries. With this I return her to her Pokeball and return home to prepare for my final exams. It was all just a ploy however, I wanted my alone time to contemplate about the victory that I had given up.