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September 10th, 2009 (2:30 AM).
Audi Famam Illius, Scriptor!
Rivals, meet Rivals
After settling the battle between Johto and Kanto thanks to Flint’s help, our heroes returned to the S.S. Quest after one last visit to the Vermillion Port, their final visit before travelling to Orthan. Many surprises await in the rooms of the ship, but even bigger surprises await in other parts of the vessel.
The room wasn’t all that bad. With a place to put his laptop, a TV set and two single beds, David had plenty of space to say he could actually be comfortable there.
That May person still hadn’t come to the room, though. This was an advantage for David’s Pokémon, like Mightyena who immediately took his place next to the bed he chose to be his trainer’s.
The latest placed his backpack on the floor jumped onto the bed, immediately lying back and sighing in contentment to have such a comfortable place in such a long journey.
- Let’s hope this isn’t the last consolation we’ll have in Orthan.
- This must be it. – Said Ash, looking at the ticket and then back at the room’s number. – But where’s Dawn?
He was actually glad to have a room near his friends, since Brock’s room was just on the other side of the corridor.
His room wasn’t different from the others, and the two single beds were tidy and clean, made with quite the perfection one could only expect in the luxury liners such as the S.S. Quest.
Pikachu waited for his trainer to go in before walking inside and jumping to the window sill, gasping, mouth open, at the wonderful sight of the sea off the Kanto shore. Ash approached his partner and looked outside, but didn’t say anything, or even did anything.
He just stood there, watching as the waves slowly crashed against the ship, disappearing in a soothing sound, tearing themselves apart in a thousand bits, some even flying as high as his window’s glass.
The marine water reminded him of Misty, though. The way the mermaid loved Water Pokémon and took care of them was one of the reasons why Ash couldn’t help but feel something in his heart.
After a long sigh, he took the cap off and wandered to the bed, leaving the backpack near the bed’s feet, assuring he knew where it would be in case it was needed.
Pikachu jumped to his side, curling near the edge of the bed.
- Can you tell me about Dragonite now?! Please please PLEAAAASE?!
Shadix didn’t know how long she would be able to stand Barry’s constant pleads to puke everything she knew about a Pokémon that wasn’t even hers, a torture she knew she’d have to handle until they reached Orthan and she could finally go away from that wired trainer with whom she’d be sharing her room!
At last, Barry sat on his bed, inside room 50, the bed that would have been just by Shadix’s side if the trainer didn’t push the bed to the opposite wall of the room, placing C.V. outside the Pokéball just in case Barry had any
- I don’t see why you won’t tell me those things. – He confessed, disappointed. The boy fell back on the bed, stretching as much as he could to free the tension off his arms and legs.
There was silence for a while, although it was subjective what silence meant. Shadix was actually satisfied that Barry had finally decided to shut up, but Barry wasn’t very thrilled with the loud voices that were heard in the corridor ever since they went inside.
Unable to keep hearing those voices without hearing his own, Barry took the pillow and covered his head, trying to mute any audible sound.
“Whenever that hall gets empty, I’m outta here.” Shadix kept repeating herself in her mind, edifying a plan to clear her thoughts.
Gary didn’t take long to get his side of the room ready, and visibly separated from the side he chose to be Lorelei’s. He decided to keep the side closest to the exit, where he could quickly run away
And just when he expected, Lorelei burst in, two large bags hanging from her long, thin arms.
- Hi, babe… what do you say about helping me out, huh? – The Elite Four wheezed. It was obvious she was tired of carrying the bags, and Gary couldn’t say no to such a famous trainer.
He shyly approached her and took the two bags, feeling their weight as soon as Lorelei let go of the packages. His hands fell to the ground due to the burden, but still, he managed to drag the bags to her bed, throwing them onto it with to cause a loud BAM as if someone had shot a gun.
- Thanks, hon. You’re a sweetheart for doing that. – Lorelei commended, leaving Gary’s face painted red once more. – I HAVE GOT to change these clothes. I’ve been wearing them since I left Indigo Plateau yesterday noon. – Gary was quietly crawling away to the bathroom while Lorelei was turned to the window, unzipping the dress. – You know how it is, hon? When you don’t have anyone to bring you down those mountain and Lance refuses to take you?
Gary instantly froze in his spot when Lorelei started to talk to him again. He slowly turned his head around to check if the Elite Four was watching him, sighing in relief when he noticed she was still busy looking over the window.
He then scurried to the bathroom, locking the door as fast as he could.
Lorelei did hear a door close, though, and turned to look for the trainer. She had already changed clothes by then, wearing a new dress, completely dark, and new glasses with a bluish frame.
- Where’d you go, babe? – She asked to nobody, looking for Gary in the room. She shrugged and took only one of the Pokéballs from the belt she had taken off. – Come on, Lapras. Time to stretch those fins.
With that, she left to the exit, closing the door quietly. The hall’s had silenced a little more since she got there.
A few moments went by before Gary opened the door all of a sudden, falling on the ground while gasping for air, grabbing the blue carpet on the ground so hard the tissue might have ripped a little.
- What do they do in these bathrooms?! Dump the GARBAGE?!
He swiftly got up and closed the door before the smell from inside the compartment came to the room, sliding down the door with his back while sighing.
- Well, at least she’s gone… that woman creeps me out…
Gary roved to the bed, and as if he tripped on his own feet, he fell on the clean, fresh sheets, not even bothering to take his belt out.
- Oh noes… Where was my room again…?
May looked across all the rooms. She and Dawn had already gone to Room 32, but it had already been taken, even though her ticket explicitly stated
- Don’t worry, we’ll find it. – Dawn reassured, looking at the map. The lobby wasn’t far from them. – Come on, let’s go ask for some info.
May nodded and both ran off, apparently knowing where they were heading. Dawn had her ticket, so she wasn’t worried. Piplup wasn’t with her, though. The Pokémon had left her ever since they entered the cargo level, and had probably wandered off with Brock when they last met outside.
- If I remember the map right, the lobby should be around he-THUD!
Dawn went straight against someone just after making the corner, falling back on the ground, baffled as to what she just hit.
- Sorry, let me help you up. – It was a young voice, and it was surely a he talking.
She raised a hand and felt another hand, a warmer, smaller hand grabbing hers.
- I’m sorry. – The person said again, composing Dawn’s hood.
She rubbed her eyes to see a little clearer, since all she could see was a mystifying red blur, mixed with the orange and gold surroundings.
The boy also got the kindness to clean the dirt off her scarf and her skirt, and Dawn noticed he stepped back.
- There. Ready for another one. – The boy joked, walking towards her again. Dawn’s heart started to race, with each beat seeming shorter than the previous while the boy, about her height, approached the coordinator. – If you’ll excuse me, now…
However, the boy didn’t stop by her side, and that was everything he had to say to her, apparently. He didn’t breathe a word to May either, but simply carried on, holding his yellow backpack’s strap again after adjusting the red cap.
Dawn wasn’t sure if she should talk or just let the trainer go away. May, though, was sure she shouldn’t, and readily grabbed her shoulder to walk away.
- Come on, that guy’s the living embodiment of rudeness. – She said while dragging Dawn to the halls.
The coordinator struggled not to go and broke free of May’s grip, walking away without speaking.
She was heading after the trainer she saw earlier.
- Wait, please. – She told the trainer, placing a hand on his shoulder once she found him before he entered his room. “Talk about lucky…” She thought.
- Yes? – He kindly said, turning around at the call.
“Rudeness? He’s so cute… and polite…” Dawn thought, unsure of what to say afterwards.
- Hum… I didn’t get to know your name… - She quietly asked, embarrassed. Her heart was furiously pumping blood through the coordinator’s body to keep her standing.
The trainer smiled back and stretched a hand to Dawn.
- I’m Max. – He answered. The girl was unsure if she should accept the handshake or not. It seemed like she would be compromising herself to something if she shook his hand. Still, slightly shaking, Dawn shook hands with Max. That smile didn’t leave his face, as if it were glued to the boy’s face. – You?
- I-huh… - She stammered, trying to get to her senses again. – I’m, huh, Dawn.
- Dawn. Lovely name. – Max gallantly took her hand and a long kiss escaped his lips.
The girl was sure her heart could have exploded into bits that precise moment the boy gave such a majestic compliment. She swallowed dry; as dry as her eyes were that moment, allowing her to watch the courteous act with all the details; the setting was perfect, that royal environment around them, illuminated by the glow of gold combined with a river of red flowing beneath them. – We’ll be seeing each other around.
Max let go of her hand and walked inside; leaving Dawn behind, completely petrified, and blankly looked at the chandelier across the corridor.
Meanwhile, on the other side of the corridor, May was watching everything happen in the front lines.
She could have sworn that Max was looking at HER while kissing Dawn’s hand, and not at the girl he should be facing. And to boot, Max had been staring at her with a triumphant look upon her, as if saying “You lost.”
- What are you doing?! – May scolded as soon as she reached Dawn.
- He’s such a gentleman… - The latest mumbled, balancing back and forth, staring idly at the ceiling.
- He’s using you to piss me off! Can’t you get that?!
But that didn’t even touch Dawn’s heart, let alone was it processed in her mind.
- Dawn? You there? Snap out of it!
- His name’s Max…
May knew when it was no use to go on trying. She sighed and turned around, leaving Dawn standing there, still mumbling all kinds of compliments about the so-called gentleman who called himself Max.
She also knew where she’d have to go know: the lobby, to know her room. Maybe Dawn’s sudden crush would end when the ship arrived to Orthan… they would have to part ways, most likely.
Holding that thought, May smiled; also pleased to know she finally reached the lobby.
But… why was everything empty…?
- …I just got here and there’s already this girl after me… - Max sighed, throwing the cap like a boomerang to a random place. Curiously enough, it landed by the bed.
Someone was already in the room; a blue haired boy was adjusting his suit while looking at himself through the mirror, trying to put a red bow tie over a white shirt, over which would wear the black tuxedo lying on the bed.
- …Aren’t you the lucky one. – Geais took a while to speak, still trying to get the danged tie in place. – Although I’m going to conquer’em all tonight. – He added with a devilish smirk, tensing his arm’s muscles.
Max sat on the bed and freed Flame.
- …Yeah. Right. – He said, lying on the bed.
- Phloshun… - Flame added, lying by the bed’s side.
Geais put his hands on his waist, sighing at the twosome’s attitude.
- You two are a bunch of lazy guys. – He added to the moan, putting the tuxedo on. – I’m gonna conquer tonight’s party like nobody’s ever seen!
What are you talking about…?
– Max was talking into the pillow rather than to Geais.
- Ah, so you don’t know yet?! The elections in Orthan ended! Their announcing the new king today and the S.S. Quest is holding a commemorative ball in the lobby.
Max jumped from his bed in surprise.
- THE CORONATION’S TODAY?!
- No, idiot. Today’s just the announcement. The coronation will be in the day we arrive to Orthan.
The Smith boy fell back on the bed again.
- Then count me out. I can’t stand all those fancy-does. Besides, if Johto catches me, they’ll stick me into the toilets.
- Phloshun. – Flame agreed.
- Humph, whatever you say. – Groaned Geais, walking out of the room, using his hand to adjust his hair. – Let’s go conquer some princesses…!
Brock’s voice broke the silence the trainer had grown fond of inside the room. Pikachu’s ears twitched, but the Pokémon didn’t move.
Ash slowly got up, rubbing his eyes after sleeping for a short while.
- What is it…? – He asked once he saw the Gym Leader clearly. Piplup was just by him.
The Penguin Pokémon scurried to Dawn’s bed, taking his place in the sheets.
- Come on. There’s someone you need to see. – He said very quietly once he noticed Pikachu was already asleep.
“Could it be… Misty?” Ash’s thoughts had a burning desire to be right as the trainer slowly got out of the bed to follow Brock outside.
Closing the door, he kept the card away and followed his friend, his legs trembling at each step, anxiousness to meet their travelling companion again.
“Is she more than just that…?” Kept thinking Ash while the door to a new room opened. A fresh, salty scent came to his nostrils when entry was granted. The room was dark, and barely anything was visible inside it.
Ash gave his first steps in, with Brock closing the door behind him. The Gym Leader stayed outside.
One of the beds was very close to the window. The moonlight shone upon it, illuminating its clear blankets… but also a silhouette. The outline of someone, standing there, watching the sea through the window, despite being sat.
- Is it you… Misty?
The person turned around, her face being enlightened for a split second. It was enough time to let Ash smile at what he saw.
- Hi Ash. – She said, getting up. Ash could see what she was wearing… it was her first clothes, or at least very similar to them. – It’s been a while.
Ash’s eyes could be seen glittering in the dark.
May crossed the empty lobby. It was odd, but everything was cleared up. It had the shape of a circle, and in the middle of it, May could see the drawing of a Pokéball’s lines: the usual drawing used in battle arenas. It was drawn in solid black, contrasting with the golden background and white floor.
Still she was glad to see that the attendant was still there, at one of the counter, ordering keys through shelves.
- Hum, excuse me… - May wasn’t too sure she was doing everything the way those socialites did, but she went and asked anyway once the attendant turned her way. – But what’s going on here?
The attendant held his head high and looked down, turning only his eyes. May knew the guy was doing it to seem taller and mighty, when he was actually her height.
- We are clearing the lobby for the tournament tomorrow. The Elections in Orthan have ended, and the new king will be announced. As such, the respectful Mr. Rhyan, owner of this ship, will be holding a ball to announce the winners.
- Tomorrow, huh…? – She repeated, curious. She drifted for a moment, which was enough time for the attendant to ignore her again and go back to ordering the shelves behind him.
“So there’s gonna be a tournament… I bet that Max guy is going to participate! If Ash manages to beat that guy, Dawn’ll see what that guy’s really made of!”
- And, do we need to sign up for this?
The attendant raised an eyebrow.
- Yes, but signups are only open tomorrow morning. After breakfast is served, an announcement will be made in that sense.
A flame of joy burst inside May.
- Thanks for the information. – The assistant nodded and turned. – One more thing. – May couldn’t see it, but the man was actually trying to not yell. – Could you find my name in the list and check my room? I seem to have been given the room number.
She handed over the ticket.
The man sighed. He had no option but to help, that’s what he was being paid for…
Reluctant, he did a search on the computer, printing out a new ticket and giving it to the coordinator.
Room 66. Thank you for reporting this mistake.
– The man was now clearly annoyed. May bowed and walked away. –
And don’t come back…
– He added when she was far enough.
Shadix looked at Barry from the corner of her eye. The boy had already fallen asleep, at least from what she could tell. C.V. was also curled and asleep by her bed, protective and intimidating even while snoring like it was. She smiled at her partner’s loyalty to her. They had been friends for a very long time.
The outside of the room had cleared. Not a sound was heard in the halls, everyone seemed to be asleep by now.
Shadix carefully opened and closed her door, trying not to break the rule of gold.
Stepping on the carpet, she quietly reached the exit to the ship’s bow.
The large doors opened to her, allowing the fresh air outside to hit the trainer’s face. She breathed in deeply, enjoying the fresh night.
The trainer strolled to the edge of the ship; her intention was to look over the metallic barrier, trying to see Kanto one last time. Seeing Kanto, she’d also see Johto in all its glory.
And she did. However, it was a moment short lived. The regions quickly became a shinning dot in the horizon, drifting into the darkness… They were travelling at high speed. They had barely left an hour ago, and they were already that far…
- Orthan must be really far… far from home… - She dreamily mumbled about the Johto region, and how she met a very special prince there…
- Roserade, use Magical Leaf! – A voice thundered from nowhere, interrupting her trance. Shadix turned fidgety, somewhat startled, searching for the origin of the voice.
- Use Protect, then throw him ThunderPunch, Electabuzz! – Another voice roared, and this time, Shadix spotted two trainers, on the far end of the ship, battling against each other.
The agile Roserade evoked a storm of petals, shooting them at high speed using the bouquets it used for hands, but the Electabuzz was quite quick as well, quickly put up a protective barrier, a glowing green orb that shielded him from the Magical Leaf’s power. As soon as the strike was over, the Electabuzz dashed at Roserade, his fists sparkling just before discharging all of its electricity in the Bouquet Pokémon’s body.
However, just as the human shape Pokémon backed away, he could already feel poison flowing throw the spikes Roserade had left on his fist.
- Dang it! Poison Point! – The blue haired trainer cursed. He knew he had to be swift in his moves. – It doesn’t matter now! Use Brick Break on it!
- Wait for it!
The Electabuzz electrified his hand once more, darting at Roserade before performing a rapid jump, preparing its hand to perform a karate move on the Bouquet Pokémon.
- Now! Dodge and use Stun Spore!
Roserade made a quick leap backwards and released a reddish mist from its bouquets, pointing them at Electabuzz.
The Human Shape Pokémon fell directly into the cloud of spores, which infiltrated his skin to cause a paralysis that completely ruined its move, forcing it to fall violently on the ground. He was now petrified on the ground, unable to move.
- Finish this with Mega Drain, Roserade!
The grass Pokémon prepared its bouquets once more, this time causing a psychic energy, shot in the shape of a greenish ray to hit and drain Electabuzz’s health.
The spot where ThunderPunch previously hit the Bouquet Pokémon was quickly recovered to its previous aspect, and the Grass Pokémon was as energetic as in the beginning of the battle.
Electabuzz, on the other hand, wouldn’t take it much longer.
As much as the trainer wanted to push him off the limits, he knew Electabuzz wouldn’t stand up while he wasn’t healed.
- Come back. – He ordered, pointing the Pokéball. The red ray turned the Pokémon into energy, draining it back to the item. – You’re disgraceful. – He muttered to the Pokéball, putting it away.
- Looks like I won, Paul. – The green haired boy taunted, triumphant.
But Paul’s severe look didn’t leave the other trainer’s eyes. The two kept staring, piercing into each other’s mind in an attempt to make the other one give up.
Apparently, the battle scenery had been the ship’s bow, in the distant front of the S.S. Quest, where none could be bothered. The two had to be extremely careful though, or they’d sink along with the ship.
Looking over the edges, one could see that Kanto was already drifting away, disappearing in the far horizon has a luminous dot.
- You’re tough, Drew. – Paul finally admitted, making the first step forward. Drew called Roserade in again. – You go all-out on your enemies, and that’s exactly my kind of strategy.
Paul stretched a hand for drew to shake. The latest, though, only stared at it, that fearsome look stitched to his eyes. Paul’s face temporarily showed a defying smirk, but quickly turned back to a gloomy face. He put his hands on the jeans’ pockets and walked off.
- I’ll be seeing you in the tournament tomorrow, Drew… and that… is when I will win.
Drew snickered at Paul’s last warning before disappearing behind him, entering the ship without even noticing that Shadix was still watching.
She noticed that Drew had kept going to the tip of the bow, holding a cord that made connection with the control tower to help him keep balance.
He saw nothing in the horizon. The blackness of the sea was another challenge he was willing to take. It didn’t scare him. For him, it meant only one thing: victory.
- I bet you really like this out here, huh? – Shadix’s voice said behind him.
Drew lowered his head and smiled.
- I guess. You seem like you’re not very pleased to come on this journey.
- I’m not homesick! You nuts? – She replied, offended. While Drew was on the right side, Shadix walked to the left side, also holding the rope.
- Are you going to enter the tournament tomorrow?
Shadix considered the trainer’s question.
- Maybe. I like challenges. A tournament seems like a good practice to Orthan. – She answered, venturing a little farther.
- Aren’t you the courageous one… - He replied, but was he changing the subject?
Drew walked to her back, grabbing her hands. – Close your eyes. – He said very quietly.
Shadix immediately suspected of something, but closed her eyes.
- Take a deep breath and walk forward until I say stop…
The trainer wasn’t too confident, but strangely, the short breathing exercise made her feel… comfortable.
She kept walking, step by step, until she heard a quiet “stop”.
- Now… open your arms… and then your eyes… very slowly… and don’t move when you do…
Shadix raised her arms, stretching them as far as she could.
Drew’s grip was released, but the female trainer could feel balance. For a short moment, the prince she met in Johto came to her mind.
She opened her eyes… slowly…
But everything she saw was darkness… darkness as far the eye could see…
Below the black veil, she could see the water… a hammered copper shield under a dusk sky… There is only the wind and the hiss of the water 50 feet below…
- I'm flying…! – She gasped, but just then, she lost her balance… and as if it were a nightmare, Drew was not there anymore.
Fortunately, the cord was her last salvation. Tightly hanging it, Shadix tried to pull herself up… only to see an empty deck again, humidified due to the nocturnal breeze and constant waves crashing into the ship.
But she didn’t feel mad, strangely. Drew, as if he had guessed, had made her remember something she considered long lost in her mind.
“Maybe he’s not such a bad guy after all…” She thought, walking back to the ship, and later, her room.
Brock was just about to sleep. He was wheezing all over, walking from one side of the corridor to another with his hands in his pockets, waiting for the time for Ash and Misty finally go to their rooms. He knew it wouldn’t be easy; he just wanted it to go by quickly!
His Croagunk was probably the only companion he had for quite a few minutes. Even the annoying croak sound was relaxing, such was his state. He was almost about to plead his Pokémon to stab him and put him to sleep; only waking him tomorrow morning.
He froze when he heard more footsteps other than his, coming from the hallway.
But the tension moment was brief: it turned out to be a young trainer with a tuxedo, wandering around as if he was drunk, from wall to wall, trying to find his room.
Brock didn’t even open his mouth to the blue haired boy; he came and went mute, and so he stayed even after making the corner.
- Misty… I…
- Don’t worry. I understand what you mean. – Misty cut Ash’s sentence, placing a finger on his lips. – You don’t need to explain anything. I understand. You want to travel, and I can’t because… well, I’m a Gym Leader. And I can’t leave the gym, or…
- Or they’ll close it… I know…
- Don’t feel guilty. The bicycle wasn’t that precious anyways. – She snickered.
- So, if you’re coming to Orthan, does that mean we’ll get to travel together? Again? – In his opinion, that would be the highest point of the conversation, as if it were a wedding proposal.
However, Misty hesitated in her answer.
- I don’t know Ash… there’s a chance we could but…
Ash took her hands and joined them with his, staring directly into her eyes.
- Come on. Please. For the good old times.
Misty knew that sincere look he was giving her.
- I’ll think about it. I promise.
The two vacillated, and as if they had lost their stability, they balanced towards each other, but always seemed to retract to their position. And no matter how many times they did it that moment, they knew the right one would come…
The stage is finally set for our heroes… are there any more to meet? Or have all the rivalries and friendships been established? The tournament in the next day will be decisive…
Will Ash and Misty finally stay together, or will the Orthan journey set both apart…?
To be continued…
Aw, let me guess. You were expecting the two to kiss each other. X3
Not in this one chapter. Maybe later, who knows… There’s still a lot to tell, as you can see.
Now, before you start lighting those matches to flame me apart, please note that I am not establishing (at least not according to the general rules and their names ._. )any Shippings or whatever they’re called. Okay, maybe I am, but whatever. You get my point. <.<
Maxwell C. Smith belongs to user Kcx
Shadix Arua belongs to user Salimus
David Lawride belongs to me.
Geais belongs to user darkbahamutneo.
Any other characters belong to the creators of the anime and whatsoever. In any case, I don’t own them.
Joined Jul 2009
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