White Heart Black Bones [PG-14]
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December 16th, 2011 (7:37 PM).
The Will of One
After the maelstrom of petals had ended, Ghetsis's Seismitoad crashed to the ground in a motionless heap. Its moist skin covered head to foot in lacerations which poured blood onto the black-tiled floors.
That was too close
, I thought as my heart thrummed wildly in my chest, and sweat beat down my face.
Ghetsis, casting a disappointed look towards his fallen Pokémon, returned the Seismitoad to the confinement of its ball before drawing out his next choice.
"Get ready for this Ophelia!" I shouted to my Pokémon; bracing myself for whatever came next. A Bouffalant was our next adversary. I grit my teeth hard. Neither side had a huge type advantage against the other, but Ophelia had taken serious damage from that last Pokémon. My Pokémon's low health could be the deciding factor if I didn't act quickly.
"Use Teeter Dance Ophelia!" I shouted; hoping for success.
Ophelia spread out the leaves on her body; rocking back and forth rhythmically as a high-pitched humming sound bounded off the walls of the throne room. In response to the confusing move produced by my Pokémon, Ghetsis's Bouffalant began to wobble on its hooves; barely managing to stand up straight.
Yes! We just might take this one down!
Or at least… that's what I thought.
"Bouffalant. Use Head Charge," Ghetsis commanded in an eerily still voice.
A gleam in Bouffalant's eyes signified its oncoming attack. With a crushing realization it donned on me that it had snapped out of confusion. I had not a moment to cry out my Pokémon's name as she was torn down before me; falling to a still heap over the crimson-stained tile.
"R-return!" I shouted, sealing my unconscious Pokémon back in her ball.
I wanted to heal her but I was fresh out of medicine, which meant that this was a do-or-die battle; a fight to the death. I couldn't afford to lose anymore Pokémon.
I looked up at my opponents with a look of determination that I hoped overshadowed the pit of nervousness growing in my gut. Ghetsis stood across from me with an unreadable look of malice spread over his aging face. His Bouffalant scraped the ground angrily with its raw hooves; snorting, and slashing its horns through the air with a shake of its afro-like mane. The two of them were ready to destroy anything that I would throw out, and it killed me.
No. I won't lose here!
"Hyle! Let's go!" I shouted; releasing my next Pokémon. Hyle launched out. Fire spewed from his nostrils as he hit the floor with a crash; sending shards of black tile flying through the air.
"Let's do this! Brick Break!" Hyle brought his fists up, kicked off from the ground, and sped straight towards Ghetsis's Bouffalant.
"Head Charge! One more time!" Ghetsis roared and the two Pokémon met in a blinding crash. Both attacks struck simultaneously knocking our Pokémon into unconsciousness. We called our fallen monsters back to their balls; reaching towards our belts to call out our next fighter.
"Eelektross, Go!" The air crackled with static as a long, green, eel-like Pokémon slithered out over the platform on Ghetsis' side.
"Go, Terra!" My Pokémon landed on the ground, jittering her body from side to side; ready for battle. Both of our fighters were electric types; apart from mine having the secondary typing of 'bug'. Neither side had a huge advantage over the other, though I figured if I played this right I would be able to finish his Eelektross off without heavy injury on my part.
The last thing I expected was the jaws of my opponent to ignite with flame and burn my Terra down into unconsciousness. Eelektross had used flamethrower, and unfortunately for me that meant my Pokémon's destruction. She was taken down without even landing a single hit.
My legs began to tremble. The small crack of nervousness which clung unto my heart had spread into a fissure of despair, and I was teetering over the edge. My Pokémon were being slaughtered before me and I was helpless to stop it. I couldn't do anything!
It wasn't over yet; I realized that. My Pokémon had not given up; they weren't through yet. The determination they had was infectious in me. It rekindled my desire to win; to save this world. I managed to hold onto my sanity, just barely, and continue this vicious battle.
I won't let it end like this!
"Hana! You're up next!" I shouted; throwing out my next Pokémon. Hana was at a type disadvantage, being part water, but I hoped that she would hang on long enough to land a hit.
"Wild Charge!" Ghetsis ordered. The air blazed with electric current as his Eelektross lashed out like a snake. Hana was hit hard and she recoiled backward. That attack had hit a lot harder than I'd anticipated.
Ghetsis burst with laughter, "Pathetic girl! Did you really think you could win against me?!"
I smirked under the brim of my hat.
Ghetsis was confused by my expression, "You find the destruction of your comrades amusing? Or have you simply gone mad with despair?"
"It's not over yet Ghetsis!" I shouted as Hana picked herself up. Her ability, sturdy, had kept her alive, but just.
Ghetsis scoffed; I could tell by his look that he wasn't expecting Hana to survive that attack, "You still won't win!"
"Hana! Use Aqua Tail!" A wave of water erupted forth from my Pokémon. Massive waves washed over his Pokémon, one after the other; each one drawing it deeper into the blue, choking out its air and drowning it further. I hadn't expected it to survive that attack, and that's probably why my response was delayed when his Pokémon burst through the waves and landed a heavy Wild Charge on us.
Hana was finished. Fragments of her broken shell clattered against the floor; falling motionless by my feet. With a trembling hand I returned her to her Pokéball.
The fear inside was growing stronger, and I was trying my best to conceal it. But by the constant sneers Ghetsis was giving me, I was sure he'd seen through my façade. He knew I was breaking and he was relishing in my ill concealed torment. But he had every right to. Ghetsis still had four Pokémon at his disposal while I was only holding on to two. He was practically glowing with overconfidence.
Things weren't looking good but I wasn't going to give up! No. Not until my last Pokémon falls and I fall with it.
I called out my iron knight, Luca, as my next fighter. He was a tough one who had really helped me out with the Elite Four. As long as Ghetsis didn't have any fighting-type Pokémon I was sure we'd be fine. "Let's finish it with stone edge!"
With luck the attack was just enough to finish Ghetsis's Eelektross off; finishing the job Hana had started. Eelektross lay motionless upon the floor; its twisting body was ripped apart by the projectile stones Luca had unleashed.
I stared at Ghetsis hard; hoping that he would falter once I displayed that I too could put up a good fight. I could tear his Pokémon down just like he did to me. But did my attempts have the same results?
I stared from his lifeless Pokémon right up into his eyes. I was shocked to see not a flicker of fear cross his scarlet eyes; not a trickle of doubt nor a sign that he would waver. He was as immovable as a mountain itself.
Ghetsis glowered, "You think you've won?"
A great unease began to build in the air. My Pokémon braced itself against the pressure. Something big was coming and we could both feel it.
"Go. Hydreigon," With a mighty flash a great three-headed dragon was released. Its body, a mix of black, midnight blue and purple, stretched high into the marble ceiling. The beast growled horribly from the back of its trinity of throats; gnashing its teeth in the air as if anxious for our flesh. It was a dragon of darkness.
Luca stared at it hard, bringing up a stance; preparing himself for any attack it might launch at us. The icy feeling of despair had come up to my lungs. I could hardly breathe under the pressure.
"Hydreigon. Use Focus Blast." Ghetsis' words rang out clear as a bell; as if it was the only sound in the world.
"L-Luca! Stone Edge!" But it was too late. The Focus Blast hit hard; smashing into my Pokémon and crushing my iron knight like a bug. It was a critical hit. Shrapnel from its broken armor scattered across the floor with a metallic clatter. I watched him lie there, blood seeping through the cracks in his broken body as my eyes became wet with tears.
"L-Luca?" I squeaked out its name, but the only response I heard was Ghetsis' wild laughter.
I brought up a shaking hand; returning my motionless Pokémon back into its ball. One more. I only had one more left.
…I won't give up…
"Rhoden! Go!" My great eagle-like Pokémon launched into the air like a torpedo; soaring around the room once before coming in front of me; beating his massive wings threateningly. Rhoden was always a brave one and didn't falter under the pressure and fear that Hydreigon radiated. On the other hand I was teetering over the edge of madness.
This was it. If Rhoden fainted it was all over. So many things could go wrong, and even then my mind flooded with all the horrible outcomes that could transpire. My next attack could miss, Ghetsis could get another critical, maybe Hydreigon was immune, and even if it wasn't another one of Ghetsis's three Pokémon could know any electric and rock moves that could knock Rhoden out.
Despite all the odds stacked against me I managed to cling onto my sanity and call out an attack.
"Crush Claw!" I shouted; hoping for a miracle. A critical hit perhaps? Maybe Hydreigon's next attack would miss.
Please… Please… it can't end like this…
Rhoden raised its talons and brought them down with all its force against Ghetsis's Pokémon. Hydriegon reeled back smashing into the floor behind Ghetsis. I looked up in shock. Rhoden had knocked it down! A glimmer of hope ran through me.
"It's over…" Ghetsis said. I stared at him blankly because I knew he was right. On a subconscious level I could feel the terminus seeping in.
"Hydreigon, use Dragon Pulse."
The great serpentine creature raised its body up; a bright glow reverberating from the maws of its three heads. The attack hit and it was over in a flash. Rhoden was knocked out in one hit; being struck back so violently he was whipped into a column supporting the castle's roof. A dead silence followed as the smoke slowly cleared. The lifeless body of my last Pokémon fell in a heap behind me, and my mind shattered. I fell off into a gorge of despair.
"It's over." Ghetsis concluded; returning his Hydreigon back into its ball. I collapsed to my knees in the pool of blood my Pokémon had left behind.
"Restrain her, now!" Ghetsis called out to what I guessed were his soldiers… but I couldn't see. I could hardly register anything. The only thing that made sense in my shattered mind was the fact that I failed. I lost to Ghetsis.
I looked up hopefully towards the one person in the world who could change this turn of events; to the only hero left. I found N standing there solemnly right behind Ghetsis; watching me with hollow gray eyes. I reached a desperate hand out; begging for his help.
My heart shattered as he turned his back on me and the malaise took hold of my heart. While my mind crumbled inward, my Pokémon were stripped from my belt and taken away. Where? I don't know. Are they even alive? Despite what N told me at the ball I could never be certain. Judging by the wounds they received during the battle I wouldn't have been surprised if they died right on the spot.
I do know for certain that I was weak. I failed myself that day. I failed my team, and I failed the world which now burns because of me.
[Part One] (
…the white princess escapes
I awoke the next morning to find myself buried deep in the confines of N's bed; wrapped up like a cocoon under sheets upon sheets of colourful velvet. The only thing that seemed to remain from my 'alcohol experience' the night prior was a dull headache which pulsated through my skull. The head pain was probably the only reason why I didn't just sleep for the rest of the day, but I was distraught by this headache and was, unfortunately, unable to pass out again. It was probably a good thing in a way, because the worst thing for my body would be to sleep and laze about all day. Regardless, I was fortunate to come out of that ordeal with only a migraine to show for it. I know it could have been much worse and I made a promise to avoid drinking like that ever again.
I squirmed out of the tepid sheets out into the morning light which beamed right into my eyes.
Great, just what my head needs
. I squinted hard; trying to pick out figures through my blurred vision.
Everything came into focus soon enough and I noticed Laika perched at the foot of the bed. She was turned away looking out over the room, but I could hardly see her through the horrible glare that beamed in through windows. I crawled over; still groggy from sleep deprivation plus the hangover, and flopped down beside her. She barked a 'hello' and I responded by giving her a quick scratch behind the ear, which I could tell she enjoyed by the huge smile on her face.
A sharp clicking sound caught my attention; causing me to jolt up in shock. I scanned the room until I found the source of the noise, and it came as a shock. I was completely dumbfounded by the state of N's room. The sections of toy train rails which once scattered the floor in lonely clumps had now been assembled forming a twisting and winding path all throughout the room.
"Whoa," I breathed, unable to take my eyes of the sight. Pushing the feelings of awe aside, at least for a brief moment, I tried to locate the assembler of the tracks. My eyes darted around quickly until they located him, and it didn't take long to spot him. N was sitting near the edge of the room; continuing his meticulous goal of bringing the tracks together. A small click sounded from where he joined the toy rails. He was turned away and I couldn't see his face.
"N… What are you doing?" I called out to him but there was no response.
"He did all this?" I turned to Laika for some answers, but because of the language barrier she simply nodded. She couldn't explain to me what kind of reason N had to suddenly put all these train tracks together. And it made me wonder why he had decided to build a huge train station all over the room in the first place. Not that I was complaining; it was better that the rails were assembled opposed to laying out over the room where they were sure to stab into my feet. But what was the reason? Was he just taking a break from his strenuous kingly routine just to have a little bit of fun? It seemed like the only sensible reason. Either that or he'd gone crazy.
Laika and I watched him for a bit as he slowly assembled the tracks; spreading them out like veins across the black tiled floor. He built the path around colourful pillows that probably looked like hills and mountains in the toy's eyes. It even went around the bed in a round-a-bout sort of way. At one point, N changed the path of the tracks to wind around the circumference of the room. When he had reached the row of windows I thought of a brilliant idea.
"Hey, Laika," I nudged her after a long silence. She looked up with a faint curiosity. "Let's go dig up one of N's trains and put it on the track! I want to see what it looks like moving along this thing!" I hopped up from the bed and headed towards the nearest toy box in sight. Laika followed behind, whether she was genuinely interested or just humoring me, I'll never know. It didn't take much searching to dig up a toy train. In fact it was quite literally sitting on top of the box.
"I found one," I said yanking it out and looking it over. It was a plastic locomotive; incredibly detailed with frightening precision. The maker of this toy clearly poured their heart into it. It was painted red and black with a triad of gold numbers on its left side: 788. On the other side was a small lever used to wind it up into motion. I started cranking it until it refused to move.
"Okay…" I slowly placed the train on the nearest string of tracks; not really knowing where it began or ended anyway. "Go!" It took off in a flash; quickly chugging down the plastic tracks. "To the bed! To the bed!" I hollered. Laika and I made a beeline for the bed which was the perfect vantage point to watch the train's journey; being in the center of the room and all. We flung ourselves onto the covers, scrambled over to the edge and watched our train begin its voyage.
It wound its way through towns made of toy boxes and building blocks, darted past space men and towering robots. After it had passed this child-like world it raced over the vast oblivion that the floor cast. For some reason I really flipped out when it came around the bed.
"WOW! Check it out! Look! Look!" I babbled quickly; pointing at the train as it chugged around N's bed. Laika yipped in response; wagging her tail joyously. We were really having a little bit too much fun. Our little train sped on until its adventure came to an abrupt end when it came by the windows of the room; where N was still seated. I watched, waiting for it to pass by him but it never did. Laika and I shared a confused look, and I went over to investigate. When I reached his spot on the floor I could see the train over his shoulder; turned on its side with its wheels spinning tirelessly in vain. The tracks had ended.
"There's a piece missing," N stated; his voice monotone.
I walked in front of him, picked up the train and steadied it back on the tracks. It was too sad just watching it sit there spinning its wheels and going nowhere.
"I wouldn't worry about it," I told him. "It's probably hiding under the bed or in one of these toy boxes somewhere," I took a quick glance around to see if I could spot it out perchance. But without such luck I turned back to N with a smile of encouragement.
"I'm sure we can find…" My words fell ill in my throat; under the brim of N's hat… behind his bangs… I noticed something black on his face. Before I could react he stood up suddenly and headed towards the door.
"N!" I called; scrambling up quickly and heading him off before he could reach the exit. I grabbed onto his arms with force; halting him. He tried to look down, to avoid showing his face to me but I could see it now. There was a huge bruise covering the length of his cheek.
"N… what happened to you?" He didn't answer. "Did… Ghetsis do this to you?" The following silence only confirmed my suspicions.
"N you…" I paused, wondering if I should continue or not. "You… You don't have to be controlled by that man! You don't have to listen to everything he says, especially when you know he's wrong! If you'd just say no… if you'd just make the effort to fight against him I know you could beat him." N remained motionless, "And… and if you won't then please, please take me back to my team!"
"No." He responded tersely.
"Why the hell not!? Are you willing to just stand by and let Ghetsis **** this world!?" I shouted; letting slip my patients.
N surprised me by breaking his gaze with the floor and staring straight into my eyes with burning fervor. "You don't understand anything!" He said angrily. He shoved me out of the way and disappearing out the door; slamming and locking it behind him; sealing me in the prison.
I stared at the door for a moment; waiting for him to return when I knew he never would. A dull numbness hung over my emotions. I had never seen him react like that… and in front of me. It donned on me that the bruise on his face wasn't the only wound N was carrying; whether on the outside or the inside.
I kicked the oaken door angrily with my foot.
With a curse I stormed back over to the bed; steam literally fuming from my ears. All I wanted to do at that moment was disappear. I'd had enough of this disgusting castle! I'd had enough of this malaise! All I wanted was to be free, but if N wasn't willing to oblige than what could I do? There was no way that I could get out of here!!
I dove deep into the blankets.
Laika hopped up on the bed; yipping questioningly.
"Leave me alone!" I shouted; my voice muffled by the large bronze pillow I had thrown my head under. Laika whined softly, but I crawled deeper and deeper into N's bed until her voice faded. Everything faded and until my headaches put me to sleep.
I awoke nearly an hour later and slowly peeked out from under the sheets. From what I could see the room was vacant.
I shed the covers and looked about, "Laika…?" Only silence followed. "…N?" Nothing.
, I thought angrily,
it's not like I care if I'm alone.
I pulled myself out of bed and stomped towards the bathroom in a huff. I was in desperate need of a shower and I hoped that the warm water would calm my nerves. I never made it there.
I tripped over one of N's low lying toy boxes by accident and sent the toys flying to the floor with a clatter. I cursed and fell with it.
"Damn it, N!" I shouted to the empty room, "Why do you always have to leave your stupid toys all over the place! I step on these things you know! It hurts like hell you stupid, Pokémon-loving weirdo!"
I was pretty thankful that he wasn't around to hear that, but getting all that off my chest felt great.
I hauled myself up; turning around to see the mess I'd made. It wasn't a pretty sight. Many of his toys were scattered about and I noticed that some had broken in the force of the fall. I bit my lip; pushing down a pang of guilt.
A sharp glinting caught my eye. Under the mess of toys I'd made was the missing piece of the train tracks. I gasped; reaching for it quickly as if it were about to get up and run away. It was broken… many of the wooden boards running horizontally between the two bars of plastic steel had shattered off.
I thought to myself,
I hope N won't get mad about this.
I looked around guiltily at the roads of train track coating the floor, and thinking that it would never been completed if the final piece was broken. I tried to suppress a small shudder as a chill ran through my spine. A cool breeze was drifting into the room; gently stirring my hair and giving me the chills, especially with the short clothes I was… wait… a breeze!?
I scrambled towards the windows; too focused to even drop the train track I held. At first glance they seemed to be closed.
No. I thought, I know I felt a breeze coming from somewhere… somewhere.
Then I saw it. One of the windows was open a sliver and that's where the breeze was coming through. It was an exit. A chance to escape! I ran for it; trying to squeeze my fingers though the gap. But they wouldn't fit. The opening was too small. I cursed to myself; clenching my fists and having the toy track poke my skin in the grip.
Inspiration suddenly struck. I looked down at the damaged section of train rail in my hand. This small toy just might be thin enough to fit through the window. I could use it as a lever to pry it open! I leapt towards the window without a second's hesitance. I was fully aware that Anthea and Concordia, or even N could return at any moment and catch me in the act. I shoved the plastic track into the gap and it fit just fine; it gave not the slightest protest. I slowly began to move it back and forth, and with each movement the crack in the window began to widen.
The plastic track snapped and I stumbled backward with a curse. It had whacked my hand pretty hard upon breaking, but I was alright. No damage was done. I quickly raced back to the window to see if I had opened the gap wide enough to slip my fingers through, and I had. It had worked! I managed to wiggle my fingers through the opening quite easily.
"Yes!" I cried happily.
Using all the strength I could muster I yanked the window open, which was no easy task mind you. The windows in N's room were meant to be opened outward not inward. I was pulling against the hinges hard, and I think the only reason they truly gave in was because they had weakened with age. I pulled harder and harder; grunting with effort as the window screeched in protest. I had to stop; my fingers were starting to strain. But by then the gap had already widened enough for me to slip through; although just barely.
I hesitated for a brief moment; a sudden realization coming to me. If I were to crawl out the window then I would be suspended on a thin sliver of railing thousands of thousands of feet above ground level. And I was afraid of heights. This was a bit of a problem. My heart had already begun to beat against my ribcage and into my throat. I was already trembling like a leaf in the breeze. Why did N's room have to be so bloody high up in the air?!
You can't do this
. One of those self-loathing voices took its chance to speak up inside of my head. I know everyone has one of those. You know, the voice that tells them they're a failure and a disgrace and disparages any feelings of happiness that arise. I was all to familiar with this voice because it had been my only company, apart from N and Laika, in my imprisonment in this castle. It had been keeping pretty quiet lately, but now of all times mine had to rear its ugly head.
You'd fall and die the second you stepped foot out there. Give up. It's not like you have the power to save the world anymore anyway. It's been too long. The world has already been torched and maimed
. It seemed to grow louder; bounding off the walls of my skull as my stomach lurched with each spoken thought.
You can't win, Touko. You aren't a hero.
I almost broke down. Each word seemed so true, so real and so sharp like a blade. Each thought was cutting deep into my morale, and I almost gave up. It would be so much easier to turn my back on his opportunity. So much easier to crawl back under the bed sheets and cry; awaiting nightmares. Trying to leave this haven would lead me right to death.
But then I thought of something.
Maybe the voice was right. Maybe I wasn't a hero. But I would be even less of a hero if I continued to rot in this room while the world burned. My Pokémon were the same; I already knew that. They fought beside me during my final hour with unshakable spirit. And even if they were dead I couldn't forsake their sacrifice by turning my back on the world.
I won't give up
. I took a step towards the open window; the breeze stirring my hair around my bony frame.
. I sucked in my gut and squirmed through the gap separating my prison from the outside world.
I'm breaking out of here!
Without even taking a final glance towards N's empty room I stepped out into the frigid autumn air thousands and thousands of feet above the earth below.
A blast of cold wind hit me upon my departure. I shrieked, clinging desperately to the grooves in the windows as I nearly tumbled off the lean ledge which was the only thing separating me from a deadly fall. I had never been so scared in my entire life, but I didn't turn back. My resolve was hard as the earth itself, and I'm not the type of person to bail out once I've set my mind on something. The heights still, were terrifying to say the least.
The world outside Team Plasma's wall of a castle was covered in a blanket of patchy fog. The clouds were thick and they swarmed heavily around the face of the structure; blocking the view to the ground below. But there were some instances where the shield of clouds broke away; opening up view to the barren world beneath, which was coated in its own veil of fog. On a regular clear, sunny day this would have been unfathomably harder to do. At least with all the cloud cover I could craft a paper-thin deception that I wasn't really high up as I really was. It was a flimsy delusion, but it kept me sane as I inched along the pale face of the castle against the moist—but icy—wind.
I dared not look down although it was hard not to. Instead I tried to find another window somewhere along the face of the castle. It didn't take much looking until I found one. It was a couple of yards away; a dark tinted, square-hole set right in the middle of the castle wall. A couple of windows echoed behind it along the face of the building until it curved away into oblivion. It wasn't in easy walking distance, but the ledge I was clinging to lead straight to it. I swallowed hard and began my slow trek to the window where I would break back in. What I would do then was all up to the nature of the room inside. I would think that up when I gained a better understanding. I had to progress for now.
It was a daunting task, and I'm not really sure how I pulled it off. I went on at a snail's pace; being ravaged by icy winds and numbing fear as I went. I kept myself focused on the window –my goal- and tried to keep my attention off the staggering drop below.
Easy now… Easy… You can do this Touko
, I repeated in my head as I inched steadily along. The disparaging voice in my head had been silenced by my fortitude, which was good because if it decided to make a comeback I was surely to lose focus and fall. I suddenly felt no pressure beneath my feet. The ledge I was crawling across had ended and I didn't even notice until I felt myself fall.
I didn't even notice. It was so stupid of me. The ledge was parted and only resumed again right before my destination; the window. I'd kept my eyes on my goal so intently. I didn't even bother to see where I was walking. And so, I fell.
I reached out desperately; trying to grab onto a ledge or a groove in the castle… anything! I simply grabbed at thin air. I fell, screaming; feeling the wind rush over me like a torrent. My mind buzzed frantically with panic. I could hardly even register that I was falling, or that eventually I was going to hit the ground and die.
Fortunately for me that never happened. I connected heavily with some sort of solid structure mid way through my fall. It knocked the air out of me and I rolled over onto my side; trying to get a breath. When I felt nothingness under me I realized I was rolling off the edge of the structure. I was quick to react this time and I latched onto the platform's edge; pulling myself up to safety and preventing another fall. Once I was sure I would come to no more harm, or be put in another fatal situation, I assessed my whereabouts.
I hadn't fallen very far from the ledge outside of N's room. Looking up I realized that the fall had only been about six feet or so. I still counted myself lucky that nothing was broken. I sat on a flat platform-like ledge that was much thicker and wider than the one outside N's room. I had the opportunity to collect myself and assess my whereabouts.
Looking down at the white stone, I guessed that there was a room underneath but it didn't look like there was a way to get in from where I was. Disregarding that, I spotted a window a few yards to my right. It was different from the last black-tinted window I tried to get to. It had some sort of a wooden frame by what I could see, and the glass wasn't tinted, but I couldn't see much more than that. The window was to my right, separated only by a fragmented platform-like ledge which broke away and left gaping holes I'd have to jump across to get to.
I nearly died. Walking along the outside of this stupid castle was bad enough, but jumping!?
"You're kidding," I wheezed, finding the strength to pull myself up. I walked over to the side of the ledge to gauge the distance I would have to jump from one platform to the next. There was a mix of delight and utter terror when I realized that, with enough momentum, I'd be able to jump the gap and get to the window…probably. Each platform was on a lower level then the last, and there was only one separating me from the window. I pursed my lips in thought. That meant two jumps to get to the window; one off this ledge and then one off the next.
I licked my lips; staring at the window hard. I'm getting to you. I walked over to the far edge of my platform and crouched down in starting position. I waited; staring at the window with burning intensity. The wind continued to lash at me but I waited it out. Waiting… waiting… The howling wind died down and a dead silence settled over the heights.
I took off; belting forward like some sort of Olympic runner. My feet slammed against the solid platform as the approaching edge grew closer every second.
I kicked off from the edge and propelled myself forward. Time seemed to slow in this leap of fate, and I couldn't help but take a small look downward. The blanket of clouds, almost as if mocking me, broke away and showed me the immeasurable drop below. I could hardly even see where the castle ended it was simply too far away.
I hit the next platform, and managed to steady myself and continue my mad dash without breaking the momentum. I felt like the luckiest girl in the world. I was actually doing it! I didn't lose my footing and fall. My ankle didn't roll. It boosted my morale tenfold.
I kept screaming in my head to run, to just go and not stop. I couldn't give up. Failure was not an option here. The end of the second platform before the window drew near, and I readied myself for the last jump. I didn't realize how far away this final platform was until I head leapt. It was out of reach. No matter how hard I pushed off the ledge or how fast I was running it seemed like I wasn't going to make it. It seemed like I would fall by the ledge, separated by only a hair, and tumble to my demise. I reached my hand out; grabbing for the edge in desperation. If I could just get a hold of it then I would be home free. But I was falling too quickly I wasn't going to make it!
You know how people say when you stare straight into the face of death your whole life flashes before your eyes? That kind of happened to me. But it was weird for some reason. I seemed to flash back to my defeat against Ghetsis, but there was no blood or death or any of that. I could just see my Pokémon, each standing before me with determination blazing in their eyes. They were brave fighters who could never be knocked down; at least not for long. They fought against the impossible. My Pokémon were the real heroes here.
Then it was… well… all I could see after that was N's face. He was just staring at me, but he was smiling and looked so happy I felt like I could bawl. I felt guilty for having turned my back on him, and I hoped that he would forgive me someday.
"You're a hero," I thought I heard him say to me, and I wanted to deny it. A wretched creature like me is anything but a hero. He then finished, "because you are free."
I flaring intensity burned inside my body, blazing through my veins and my soul became an inferno.
I won't give up
!! I roared like mad; reaching out to the approaching ledge as I descended down. Somehow, against all odds, I grabbed hold of the edge of the final platform just before it fell out of reach. I slammed into the marble platform; the air forcefully leaving my lungs in a pained gasp. My vision blurred as a wave of pain washed through my chest; running through my ribs as I scrambled onto the ledge. I almost slipped off due to the clamminess of my hands, but despite the weeping of my joins and the howling of my fingers, I managed to pull myself up into safety.
I fell onto my back with tears streaming down my face; eyes set on the gray sky above and I laughed. I laughed louder than ever before, and my throat hated me for it. But for some reason I couldn't stop and was soon cackling like a mad man.
"I did it guys…" I choked between laughs, "I did it…"
Today's lesson is: Never Give Up! Anything is possible. It may sound cheesy, but I think it's true. Never let your dreams die.
Now, with regards to the chapter. Yes. I love torturing Touko, but don't worry, she's tough!
I also haven't revealed Touko's Pokemon for good reason. But fear not,
this is all happening for a reason
. But while we're on the subject, does anyone have any guesses to what her team consists of? A prize of virtual pastries given to those who can guess correctly! (not really though.)
Joined Nov 2011
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