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Old February 2nd, 2012, 02:44 PM
apenpaap
Togepi
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Gender: Male
Quote:
Originally Posted by destinedjagold View Post
Re-reading this chapter made me feel sad.
Still, it's a great chapter, as usual.


I'd say it contains the darkest bit of the story, though the latter parts slowly begin lightening things up a bit already. And of course, I'm glad you like it.

Quote:
Diego flirting Aqua really feels very eewy... x,x
Glad Aqua declined.
Yes, it is. Especially since he is not really interested in her, but simply trying to make his victory over Boreas even more complete and crushing.

Quote:
Somehow, I felt like Octa was gonna rescue Boreas.
And somehow, you made me realise how selfish suicide really is... o.o
Heh, well it would've been a weird ending to the story if he hadn't anyway. And yes, suicide is really a quite selfish thing to do in most circumstances.

Chapter Forty-Two: The Highflying Girl

When they finally emerged from Chargestone Cave it felt like a huge blessing to them all. Capella couldn't have been more mistaken when she had said they would have a great time in the cave. Now that horrible place was her tomb, and the site of the violent breakup between Boreas and Aqua, two events that kept haunting Boreas. Seeing the Sun for the first time in weeks was simply delightful. While it didn't really solve any part of the mountain of troubles and horrid memories plaguing Boreas the light at least made them seem slightly less overwhelming than the eternal darkness of Chargestone Cave did.


It had been winter when they'd entered the cave, but by now spring had clearly started. Flowers grew, birds sang, and trees had regained their leaves. Seeing life go on everywhere made the pain of Capella's loss easier to bear. But not the pain of Aqua's treason. When Boreas saw two Pidgeys courting, he felt so incredibly jealous he was just about ready to kill them both. Spring brought many such reminders to Boreas, and it made his mood the worst in the entire team.


They arrived in Mistralton on a beautiful day in early April. They walked the last part of the journey to the pokécenter, through Mistralton, exhausted and limping with various wounds and broken limbs. Their walking the streets so battered up and exhausted caught the attention of a pink-haired human woman in revealing blue clothes and a middle-aged man with an odd greying-brown haircut and beard. They rushed over to help Black and his pokémon. The woman threw Black's arm around her shoulder to help him walk, as the deep cut on his leg had got infected and gave him a limp now.


"Are you alright?!" the woman asked with concern.


Black was looking at her with a stupid, mesmerised expression on his face. "I... I am now," he spoke.


"Don't worry, boy," the man said in a pleasant baritone voice, "Skyla and I'll help you to the pokécenter. What's your name?"


Black didn't respond but kept staring straight into Skyla's eyes. "Hey there. My name is Black."


"Right, Black, my name is Cedric Juniper, and this is Skyla, Mistralton's Gym Leader. And you are obviously exhausted and wounded, so we're bringing you to the pokécenter."


In other circumstances Boreas might have giggled along with his friends and Lucius at Black's obvious smittenness, but instead he felt ice cold jealousy freezing him, and he could barely resist freezing Black as well. "So, what's you name?" Black asked.


"Professor!" said Skyla, "I think he might have a concussion or something!"


"Heh, 'or something' indeed," Juniper chuckled, "I don't think the pokécenter can cure that, but at least it can heal their wounds. I wonder if he's the same Black my daughter has been talking about..." He inspected Octa for a moment. "Yes, he must be. That Servine clearly comes from Crimson Breeders: look at its pentafurcated tail- and backleaves and its long arms. I'm pretty sure only they have bred Servines looking like that."


"You're right, Professor. Did Minerva give a Snivy from Crimson breeders to this Black? That's a generous gift!" Octa basked with pride at this.


"Yup. Always gave her friends big gifts for their birthdays when she was a kid too. Well, boy, if your brain is still working, you're probably wondering if I'm related to Minerva Juniper. And I am: she's my daughter."


Black seemed to notice Cedric Juniper for the first time. "Oh, hello sir. I know your daughter, actually; she gave me Octa, my Servine."


Juniper chuckled as they reached the pokécenter. "Did she? Well, what a small world it is. As Skyla here just showed me with her plane. Skyla, I'll let you know if something comes up again."


"Professor, my plane is a cargo plane! You can't keep treating it as your private jet!"


"Aww, Skyla. If you keep frowning, your face might freeze like that, and that'd be a shame. We all have to help each other out, you know, both people and pokémon. Well, see you later. You too, Black."


"Sheesh," said Skyla as Juniper walked away, "it's hard to believe a happy-go-lucky guy like that could be a renowned pokémon professor. Well, Black, I take it you'll want to challenge my Gym, but first I want you and your pokémon to get a good check-up and rest at the pokécenter. I won't accept your challenge beforehand."


-


Boreas awoke from the first good night's sleep he'd had in weeks. When he had told Nurse Armageddon's Audino he couldn't sleep she had given him some pills that had sent him into a dreamless sleep. That, coupled with the pokécenter's cares and the soft room meant Boreas awoke in a better mood than he'd been in since Capella died. It was still darker and fouler than the average Garbodor's stool sample, but at least it was an improvement.


Boreas looked at himself in the mirror that hung in the room. A grim, sad Glaceon looked back. The cheerful, intelligent gleam in his eyes was gone, replaced by a frown and a sad stare. A large scar marred his left cheek and the tip of his tail was missing. The fur on his lower jaw was darker than it used to be. It was quite a change from the last time he'd seen his reflection. He tried to smile, but it looked awfully fake and just as gloomy as before.


When Black awoke he woke his pokémon and told them to gather round. It was clear he was going to say something, but he didn't seem to be able to start.


"Um," he explained. He was silent for a moment. "Guys, I have to talk to you about something. I... uh... basically, I'm not sure if I want to continue our journey. Capella's death made me think... It made me think about many things, but most of all about being Champion. It's what I've always wanted, but now I'm not sure any more... Capella's death made me think about the things that really matter, and I wonder if power is worth the chance of losing another on of you... So I'm considering returning to Nuvema. You can all come with me, of course. But I'm not sure, that's why we're going to continue until I decide and challenge Skyla today."


Boreas didn't know what he thought of it. Getting away from it all by returning to Nuvema sounded great. But on the other hand, that would also mean stopping their fight against Team Plasma. Which was probably a good thing, now that he thought of it. No more death, no more fighting, no more danger. There was nothing they could really do against Plasma anyway, and the chance of losing more friends or running into Aqua again...


"Black, old chap," Octa spoke, "as much as it pains me not to pursue our chance at glory, I agree we should most definitely consider returning to Nuvema, at the very least for a long break and perchance to retire from our endeavour entirely. Capella's untimely demise has affected us all severely..."


Boreas nodded.


"Yeah, I-I guess you're right," said Toxica. "It's just not the same without Capella. I don't know if I can continue like this..."


Lucius scowled and looked at each of their faces in turn. "That's funny," he snarled, "I didn't notice all your balls were cut off during the battle!"


"What?!" Boreas exclaimed.


"You're a bunch of weakling cowards! Did your spirits die with Capella?! Is your ambition suddenly gone?! You're just gonna go home to whine about her being dead?! Well, if that's the way y'all think, I'm done with this team! You guys may be ready to give up, but unlike you Capella's death has only made my resolve stronger! I will find Team Plasma, and make them into a funeral pyre for Capella. Sages, grunts, pokémon, N, that lovely girlfriend of yours, pup. And I will get to the ****ing pokémon league, and enter that ****ing Hall of Fame! And if you guys are too wimpy to do that, I'm leaving the team the moment you give up, and I'll let myself be caught by Cheren, or another real trainer!"


It was silent for a moment, then Boreas, Octa, and Toxica started arguing with him. They fell silent, however, when Selene said: "I agree with Lucius."


It was so rare that Selene said something that both made sense and was directly connected to the situation at hand that they all stopped arguing. "You... You have an opinion?" Boreas blurted out.


Selene looked as surprised as Boreas did. "Yes... I believe I do. I agree with Lucius. We can't stop now, I want to defeat the Champion. And stop Team Plasma. I think this must be important."


Lucius laughed. "There, that crazy old chicken is being saner than all of you together. Good job, you crazy bird!"


"But Selene," Toxica argued, "you can't really agree with 'im. I mean, what's becoming Champion going to get us?"


"Power," Lucius spoke, "and glory and honour and recognition and all that. The entire region looking at us reverently, because we proved we are the most powerful pokémon in all of Unova! If we continue we can have enough power to avenge Capella and much, much more!"


"We shouldn't give up," Selene nodded. "I think I'm certain of this. We can't give up just because we've hit a little trouble. If I'd done that when- uh, never mind. So anyway, I agree with Lucius."


They began arguing again, but Black interrupted them. "Okay, I see not all of you agree with me. But I haven't decided yet anyway. Let's go challenge Skyla first."


-


Though Mistralton was only a small city, the Gym was quite hard to find. It turned out to be inside an aircraft hangar on the city's busy airport. From the inside the hangar was quite unique: the huge hall contained two platforms raised high up in the air on poles. A huge blue cannon stood on the middle one and on the ground. The cannons were large enough for a human to fit in, and pointed at the platforms. Skyla stood on the highest platform, waiting. Black tried shouting at her, but she was too far away to hear.


"Selene," Black said, "go to Skyla and try to find out if I'm really supposed to fire myself out of these cannons."


Selene flew up and came back a while later. She simply nodded.


"Well," Black said dubiously, "I guess it must be safe... But I'll return you all to your pokéballs for a moment."


-


Boreas was released from the bizarre world inside his pokéball on the highest platform. Black looked quite bruised up.


"Hee-hee," giggled Skyla, "did you enjoy flying with the help of the cannons? They're my pride and joy!"


"Well, they are quite a nice pair of cannons," said Black.


"Well, the cannons may be fun, but battling is even more fun! We'll use three pokémon each, no switching out. Amelia, go!"


She threw a pokéball with a graceful pirouette, and a Swoobat appeared, soaring through the air. "Selene," Black commanded, "you're up first!"


Selene looked up quizzically. "Am I? I don't see myself there..."


"He means you have to kick that Swoobat's ass, crazy bird!" Lucius barked.


"Oh, I see!" Selene took off and pursued the Swoobat. Boreas thought Selene was a very wise choice for the battle here. Just like with Elesa, their immobility was a big disadvantage, but Selene's wings solved that problem. Her type advantage was good too.


Neither Selene nor Amelia the Swoobat was a very graceful flyer. They flew around the large hangar flapping their wings loudly in powerful, rather than dazzling aerial combat. Still, they raced through the hangar, trying to get the better of each other. They pecked and bit each other, bashed into their enemy, hit the other with their wings.


Suddenly Selene plummeted down, falling to the ground like a brick. She was too far away for Black to return her to her pokéball, so it seemed she was going to crash into the ground. The Swoobat dived down even faster, using her wings to catch up to the plummeting Murkrow and rescue her. As soon as she caught up, Selene suddenly regained complete control of her flight, powerfully hit the Swoobat with her wings, circled around her and dug her claws into Amelia's back and wings. Lucius and Boreas cheered for her, but Toxica seemed unimpressed and Octa frowned disapprovingly.


The battle continued with low swoops and high flies, but after the powerful dark-type attack Selene had unleashed on Swoobat she had such great advantage that the battle was practically over. It wasn't long before Skyla recalled her pokémon.


"When I think about a match with a fabulous trainer like you, it's like walking on air!" Skyla said as she threw another pokéball. "It's your turn, Orville!"


With a flash of light a gleaming metallic Skarmory appeared. "Uh oh, that's a steel-type..." Boreas mumbled, remembering Ryoku's Ferrothorn that had been nearly impervious to damage thanks to its type.


"No problem, pup," Lucius said, "my flames'll easily burn through that armour and roast the bird inside."


"Well, that's not much good to Selene, is it? And besides, you'll have to catch it first. That won't be easy without wings."


"Yeah, well, why don't you go give up and cry back to Nuvema, huh?"


Boreas' emotions were already stretched to their limit and the urge to attack Lucius was very hard for him to resist. "What is your problem, Lucius?!"


"What's my problem, pup?" Lucius scoffed, "I could ask you the same thing. We have an opportunity at power, fame, fortune, and glory and you just want to throw it away to go crying like a newborn?!"


"If you like power that much," Boreas hissed, "why don't you join the Sages? Their plan sounds just like your thing!"


Lucius was furious at the suggestion. "Because they killed Capella, you dip****! So maybe their cause is surprisingly good, what does that matter? I'm still gonna kill them all and everyone who helped 'em along."


"Lucius," Black commanded as he recalled Selene, who had just got badly beaten up by the Skarmory, "it's your turn!"


Lucius turned his furious glare away from Boreas and instead paid attention to the big metal bird that was rapidly swooping to the platform. A gigantic wave of flame erupted from his mouth. The Skarmory tried to avoid it, but it was too big even for a pokémon of its speed and it was caught right in the wave of flame, yet it emerged still flying though its conductive metal armour had to be baking it on the inside. Lucius breathed in to produce another inferno, but Skarmory's speed paid off and it swooped over Lucius, leaving long, deep cuts in his back with its metal claws.


But Lucius jumped at his opponent, his teeth ablaze with intense flames, and bit into its tail, leaving a red-hot mark before Skarmory managed to shake him off, nearly dropping him over the edge. They began a powerful, rough melee combat. Under normal circumstances Skarmory's metal armour would give it an immense advantage, but Lucius' teeth and claws were ablaze with flames, heating the metal bird's armour up with every hit and roasting the creature's flesh inside.


For a while the battle seemed to be going to Skarmory's side, as the cuts it left on Lucius forced him ever nearer the edge. But then the battle's tide turned as Skarmory's armour heated up further and further. In the end Skyla was forced to retract it as it began screaming in pain, being baked from the inside.


"This is my last pokémon," she said, sending out a Swanna, "but I never give up hope!"


The moment Swanna appeared from the pokéball it unleashed a beam of bubbles on Lucius. The speed at which the bubbles moved meant the barraged Lucius powerfully with lots of water and soaked him as they blasted him back. The fire-type roared and yelled in pain, but there was little he could do any more.


"Boreas, it's all yours!" said Black.


Boreas pounced at Swanna to pin it down before it could fly away, but it took off immediately, recognising a faster and more agile opponent. Boreas almost jumped over the platform's edge as he missed, but managed to catch himself. His opponent, now soaring through the air, blasted him with the Bubblebeam. Though they were only bubbles, the force behind them was immense and it felt more like a beam of golf balls blasted at him with great force than bubbles. His skin was bruised by the great force, which felt as if it left marks on his bones. Boreas disrupted the Bubblebeam with a pulse of cold, then jumped out of the way, hit the head of the beam with an Ice Beam, freezing the nearest bubbles and turning them into a beam of hail the size of golfballs instead. He tried to let the cold spread up the beam to its user, but that was impossible due to the air between the bubbles and the speed at which they flowed. So he quickly stopped doing that, as the last thing he needed was for those bubbles to be solid and thus do even more damage.


He tried to hit his opponent with Ice Beams, but it was too far away to be hit by them. On the other hand, the small platform allowed him little space to dodge the Bubblebeam.


He tried to control the copious amounts of air in the large hangar, to whip it up into an icy storm, but that was not easy. The air was standing still here, lazy and stagnant; quite unlike the stormy, busy air he had used the last time he'd tried to control it. It didn't want to move, but he prodded it on with Icy Wind, slowly getting it to get off its lazy arse and start moving about, first as a calm breeze, then as a stiff cool wind that gyred through the Gym. Boreas found it increasingly easy to control and use it. He directed the winds to his opponent to interfere with its flight. Of course, he couldn't precisely control the unpredictable, chaotic air, but giving it a nudge and a suggestion for the general direction of what he wanted it to do worked just as well.


The bubbles stood no chance of survival in the roaring winds that now howled through the hangar and Swanna was having heavy troubles staying afloat. Skyla shouted commands at it, but it couldn't even hear her over the rapid winds. This was amazingly easy, Boreas thought. The air itself seemed to want to move and make a storm, all it needed was some encouragement to actually do it.


His opponent swooped to the platform, battling the fierce winds. But it didn't even have the mobility to dodge the five Ice Beams Boreas shot at it as it struggled against the winds and was hit by all. Thoroughly weakened, it managed to land on the platform, only to be taken down by two more Ice Beams.


"Wow," Skyla cheerfully spoke as she almost lost her balance to the storm, "you're an amazing pokémon trainer! Being your opponent has been a new source of strength to me, as you won an amazing victory. Here, you earned the Jet Badge!" she handed Black a badge shaped like a feather.


"Thanks," said Black.


"Y'know, I heard some things about you from the other Gym Leaders!" Skyla continued. "Six badges already, eh? Brycen and Drayden had better watch out..."


"Actually..." said Black. "I'm not sure if I will continue my quest."


"But why?" Skyla asked with concern. "You're a great trainer, you have real potential. I'm sure you could make it to the pokémon league, and then who knows?"


"I just... Don't know..." said Black.


"Well, don't you want to continue for your fans, then?"


"Fans?"


"Yeah, that guy with the long green hair standing in the hangar's doorway, he watched our entire battle. He must be a fan of you."

Last edited by apenpaap; February 2nd, 2012 at 02:49 PM.