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I will begin with the obvious: I do not own pokemon.
Warnings: This piece of work will contain, drugs, philosophy and moral disputes that may or may not go with one’s belief’s, religious references, genius (but psychotic) scientists with the belief that they are/can be god, cursing, violence, death and teen angst.
This is rated T, but I suggest that only 16 and up read this. You have been warned, so I don’t want to receive any flames in the future when chapters become more intense.
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The world was moving too slow… it couldn’t keep up with his aging body. It was growing and growing.
“Medic, over here!”
“Sir, he needs to be stabilized!”
His skin was growing old and wrinkled, weathered from age, but the people surrounding him were moving at what was deemed as a normal pace. He could remember moving at that pace, but only in his dream world.
“Get him on the stretcher… steady, steady… I said steady!”
“Sir, he’s starting to seizure!”
“We need those anti-toxins. The idiot took Glotter Acid.” The voice talking was laced with anger and disgust. There was nothing worse than trying to save a druggie because the damn kid shouldn’t even be near the stuff.
“Injected.” The voices paused for a moment. “It’s working.”
His skin had gotten beyond wrinkled and had slowly turned to dust, but as the dust cleared, smooth skin replaced it. He had been reborn! …oh, and now he was aging once more. How peculiar. The angry people that were moving in that normal pace that seemed so alien weren’t making any sense. He knew they were speaking, but proper words didn’t seem to be forming. It was all so jumbled.
“Get us a name,” the doctor ordered as he stared down at his patient, looking incredibly worn out. Treating teenagers on drugs seemed to always drain him. It was always depressing when treating a seemingly dying or tripped out patient, but children always had an effect on the doctor.
“Shaun Tess,” came the reply. There was a sigh as papers were ruffled. “This isn’t his first offense either. Poor boy has been in two other times, one for Blue Shrooms and Ivysaur Spore.”
“This boy sure likes the hallucination drugs,” the doctor murmured. “And he’s in here for Glotter Acid as well. No wonder why the anti-toxins had a fast reaction.”
“He’s one of the few that built up a tolerance with pokemon made drugs and he knows it,” the younger doctor said with a hint of disgust as he took in the young man lying immobile on the bed, eyes open with a glazed look.
The boy had black, messy hair that was plastered about his head thanks to sweat. Hazel eyes were glazed over but seemed to be moving up and down. The boy was in ripped, dark gray pants with a leather and silver studded belt and a black, sleeveless black shirt that showed off many tattoos, but the doctor was sure that if the shirt were to be removed even more would be there. Hidden behind the messy hair were ears pierced all over. The left ear had an industrial bar piercing and three studs in the earlobe. The right had three studs on the lobe and two on the cartilage. The boy was an obvious punk, but that wasn’t so surprising.
This was a poor neighborhood with a lot of kids living out their days on the street before going back to unwanted and unloved homes. Quite a few just straight out lived on the street without ever going home and thus joined one of the many gangs that plagued the town. Despite the fact that their town, Apala, was the designated area that all trainers of their region went to for the final badge, it was still a poor town.
His skin had stopped aging, but that had left him to think about the many lives he had lived. Despite the fact that the world where the normal moving people was nothing but a dream, he had still lived that life, and when he was done he had died and been reborn several times simply because when he woke up his mind moved too fast. However, it seemed like he had finally begun to slow down, and that world that he thought was a dream was becoming real…
Oh look, his hand was moving at the alien like pace!
“We have movement,” the doctor said, clearly pleased. In situations like this, the only thing they could do was allow the drug to run its course. Glotter Acid was a drug made by a Gloom’s toxins that induced hallucinations. The only danger this drug posed was that the person who took the drug could hurt themselves because of the hallucination. The drug itself didn’t cause any true problems and it wasn’t addictive, but it was very illegal. “Pupils are dilating,” the doctor said approvingly, staring intently at the boys face. “He should be coming to in an hour. I take it since this is his third time in the hospital the police are aware of his offenses?”
“The girl that found him called the police and then they called the hospital. The police station called to warn that they were sending an officer to make a formal arrest when he’s been approved to leave.
The doctor sighed. “Very well. Alert me when the officer gets here. For now we can only make Mr. Tess comfortable until he is right of mind.”
His hand tried to reach out to the man in front of him, but with a stern look his hand was placed beside his body. What was wrong with this being? He only wanted to study him, find what was real and understand why he was slowing down. Why had he stopped being reborn, and why was the world blinking black lights like when one is blinded by the flash of a camera?
The doctor by that name turned. He set down the papers he was going over and looked over the police officer. He had dark brown hair and brown eyes that held an exasperated glint. His tan colored face held a firm frown but he seemed unsurprised.
“You’re here to pick up the boy?” Doctor Shawn asked with a frown of his own. “We have been unable to contact the boy’s family, but I’m sure you’ve been told or are already aware.”
“I’m aware,” the officer said as he folded his arms. Each time the young Shaun Tess had been sent to the hospital or picked up off the streets for drugs or fighting, it was always the cops that went and got him, and it was usually him, Officer Taylor Chandler, that dealt with the boy. Every cop in this town had their own little band of miscreants that they usually had to deal with because the same kids kept getting in the same trouble, and Shaun just happened to be one of Taylor’s kids.
“He’s aware now,” Doctor Shaw said with a sigh as he motioned for Taylor to follow. Glotter Acid only lasts for a few hours, and since according to him he took it at eleven in the morning and it’s now four in the afternoon, Shaun was now in his right mind, which meant he was aware that he had been caught.
“Let me guess, he tried to escape,” Taylor said dryly.
“We had to have the guard handcuff him to his bed,” Doctor Shaw said, his eyes lowered.
“Don’t go showing the boy any pity,” Taylor said immediately, his voice gruff as he saw the look on the doctors face. “Shaun has been to rehab and juvenile hall. He’s had many chances to stop.”
“And the parents?”
“Father long gone and mother even more of a dope fiend than the son.” Doctor Shaw sighed at the harsh tone. Cops had a very different opinion on how to treat teen drug addicts than doctors. “Hello again, Shaun.”
The young man that Taylor had come to collect was sitting cross legged on the hospital bed, tugging irritably with his handcuffed hand. Black hair whipped around the teens face as his head snapped toward him, hazel eyes no longer glazed over. The much applied black eyeliner that was used in an attempt to hide his insomniac and drug induced dark circles was smeared about, but it only seemed to intensify the venomous glare.
“Officer,” Shaun snarled, giving his chained wrist a harsh tug, not even wincing as the metal dug into his skin. “Here to drag me back to that rat hole I call a home after taking a nice trip to the station?”
“Not this time,” Taylor answered, keeping a firm hold on Shaun’s shoulder as his wrist was freed. Shaun was a big boy, broad shouldered and muscled thanks to working out and fights, but Taylor was a trained officer and had proper training to manhandle uncooperative teens.
Shaun grunted as he walked to Taylor’s car and shrugged the offending hand off, eyes wary on the gun the man’s belt before getting in the car with an angry growl. He slammed the door shut and glared ahead of them as Taylor turned on the car.
“Really, Shaun,” Taylor started receiving an annoyed groan from the teen, “what were you thinking? You just got out of rehab a few weeks ago; do you really want to go back again?”
Shaun scoffed. “Don’t know why you’re talking to me like that. S’not like I have a choice but to go back to juvie now.” Shaun fixed the cop with a glare. “You told me that.”
“Looks like you’re at least aware enough to remember what’s real,” Taylor said dryly. Shaun’s reaction was like a Meowth hissing at a Mightyena. Suffice to say Talyor was amused as he began to drive.
“Do you want to go back?” Taylor asked seriously. His response was silence. “You live in a rundown home and spend nearly every waking moment of your time under the bridge with the other deadbeats, Shaun. Are you just going to sit on your ass and accept a joint each time you get better just because you’re bored?”
Shaun let out a loud burp.
“Dammit, Shaun!” Taylor yelled, slamming his fist on the steering wheel, turning to glare at the dark haired teen. “Do you even realize that if this continues you’ll be sent to jail? You already have several offenses and there are others that are pushing to put you in jail despite the fact that you’re underage.” Taylor’s glare intensified. “And if you don’t start trying to help yourself, I’ll have no problem with allowing it.”
Shaun scoffed. He slumped in his seat and brought his knees up, feet resting on seat. “Whatever.”
Taylor was silent for a moment. “So what did you see this time?”
Shaun grunted and glanced at the officer. “I sped up while everyone stayed at a normal speed.” He grimaced in remembrance. “Kept dying and being reborn. I thought everything I had done in life was nothing but a lie.”
Again Taylor was silent for a moment before he burst out laughing.
Shaun gave the man an absolutely livid glare. “**** you,” he spat, looking away.
“Hearing about your hallucinations never gets old,” Taylor chuckled as he pulled into the police station.
“You only want to hear about them because you wish you did it,” Shaun sneered, getting out of the car in a huff and stuffing his hands in his pockets, the firm hand once again on his shoulder as he was led into the station.
“No, Shaun,” Taylor said, tone full of grief and anger, “I don’t.”
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“You never learn do you?” came the annoying screech of Shaun’s mother.
He sneered, eyeing the woman that spawned him with disdain and a bit of surprise. What the hell was she doing here? She’d never picked him up from the station before. He had always had to deal with the charges and cops on his own, so it was very much a surprise that his mother was finally off her ass (and surprisingly not in a drug induced stupor) and was here yelling at him, acting all maternal.
What was this ********?
“Yea, like you do?”
The response was an attempted smack, but Shaun caught the thin wrist in his large hand, glare even fiercer than before. “I dare you to try that again,” he growled. “Acting so high and mighty. Well, guess what, you’re just as much of a druggie as I am, if not more.”
“That’s enough,” Officer Taylor barked, stomping around in anger, another cop trailing behind him with a bundle of papers.
Shaun’s mother paid the man no mind. “You think I’m the loser?” She gave a humorless laugh, face old and worn out. “Then I guess that makes you the son of a loser.”
Shaun just stared before pushing the woman back in disgust. “You’re pathetic.”
“I said that’s enough!” Taylor all but snarled as he pushed Shaun back and sat him down on a chair. He gave everyone warning glares. “I thank you for coming, Mrs. Tess,” Taylor said, ignoring the snort. “As you know, Shaun has had four offenses for violence and now with this one, three offenses for drugs.”
“Don’t forget to count all the ones that he’s not been caught for,” Shaun’s mother sighed as she began to fumble around her pockets for a cigarette.
“Mrs. Tess, you are not to light that while in here,” Taylor said warningly.
Mrs. Tess sighed again. “Just get to the point. Is he going back to rehab?”
“Actually, we have several new options open for us,” Taylor said seriously.
Mrs. Tess snorted. “Don’t tell me he’s going to jail. He’s just seventeen.” Taylor’s face remained grim. Her voice became flustered. “He’s just seventeen!”
“We heard you the first time,” Shaun drawled, resting his cheek in his hand, fingers scratching at his side burns.
“Don’t start with me,” his mom snapped. “Look at you, still twitching from the after effects.”
“If you don’t mind,” Taylor interrupted coldly, staring at Shaun intently before lowering his voice to a gentle level. “Jail won’t be an option now or in the future if you take a different road,” he said carefully.
Both Shaun and his mother scoffed. They were both thinking of his failures from rehab.
Taylor ignored it. “It’s a challenge that can change your life,” he continued, “but it’s something that has yet to have a single failure.”
Shaun frowned. “Shock therapy?”
“Now is not the time for sarcasm, Shaun,” Taylor said, tone hard. He glared at the teen for good measure, unsurprised the boy wasn’t intimidated. “It’s still considered an experiment because less than twenty children have partaken in it, but not a single one of them went back to drugs or the underworld.” Taylor sighed. “Tell me, Shaun, what do you think of pokemon training?”
Shaun blinked, completely thrown back before he rolled his head back and let out a bark of laughter. “You expect me to be some geeky pokemon trainer?” he sneered.
“It’s either that or back to juvie and then prison,” Taylor said firmly. “I can assure you it’s a perfectly accountable treatment. Or at least that’s what the scientists and psychologists say, and that is exactly why I am offering it to you. Pokemon have a huge impact on humans, and becoming a trainer unloads a massive amount of responsibility.”
Shaun’s lip upturned in amusement. “And what makes you think all the others before me didn’t go back to doing drugs? What make this such a successful thing?”
Taylor gave a thin smile. “I was just getting to that.”
“Then get to it.”
Again another warning glare was given, but again it was ignored. “You would be forced to travel around our region and defeat every gym leader.” He chuckled at Shaun’s scowl. Traveling around their whole region, the Lenore Region, would be no easy feat. “At each town or city you will be forced to check with the local police station where I assure you they will have been notified about your predicament. You will be questioned with psychic pokemon, so yes, Shaun, they will know if you lied.”
Shaun leaned back, arms folded. “And what if I run?”
“You will have tracker on you,” was the answer.
Shaun scowled. “And if I do end up doing something?”
Taylor sighed. “What is with your need for drugs? The drugs you take have no addictive influences in them, it’s all on you.” Shaun gave no answer. “If you must know, Shaun, if you are caught to have been doing illegal drugs, you go straight to prison to serve your time. There are no second chances in this. You get one chance and that’s it, and that is precisely why it has such a high success rate.”
Shaun could see why. Kids forced to travel and train these beasts wouldn’t have time to do drugs, not if they had to beat all the gyms in order to free, especially if there was a time limit. And also, who the hell wanted to go to jail?
“I don’t know anything about pokemon,” Shaun said in a bored manner.
“********,” Taylor said bluntly. “Everybody knows what the hell a pokemon is. They may not know every single one the damn critters and their attacks, but they know some attacks and they most certainly recognize enough to be educated. And I don’t want to hear anymore crap coming from you. Ever school has a class dedicated to teaching you the names of pokemon and their attacks, even if you never work with pokemon.”
The man was right. Not a single soul on this planet didn’t at least know a little something about pocket monsters.
“So what are you going to do, Shaun?” Taylor prodded gently. “You have the chance to get out of this town, get a life, get away from the drugs –”
“Don’t,” Shaun growled, rubbing his eyes and spreading the eyeliner even more. “Don’t play with me. I don’t have a choice in this.” His expression turned exasperated. “It’s either be some retarded trainer or go to prison in a year when I turn eighteen. Yea, there’s a real choice in that.”
“What do you have against pokemon?” Taylor prodded.
“I got nothin’ against pokemon,” Shaun spat. “Just sick of hearing about how great trainer’s are and how they work so damn hard.” The teen was beginning to look like he was fighting the urge to spit.
“They do, Shaun,” Taylor said, voice no longer gentle. “And so will you, if not harder. So what will it be, Shaun? You at least don’t have to fight against withdrawals, so what’s one year of hard work that can get you free?”
“Free?” Shaun repeated neutrally. “Like, free from you *******s?”
“Free from everything,” Taylor said irresolutely.
Shaun snorted. “So sure this’ll work.” He sighed, eyes looking to the ceiling. Just beat the gyms, get off the cops list, and make some money through battling and getting out of this ****** town? Sounded like a dream come true.
Too bad Shaun didn’t believe any of his dreams could come true.
“Sick,” Shaun mused. “You send kids out on these little test journeys and deal with withdrawals out in the wild?”
“What do you take us for, Barbarians?” Taylor asked gruffly.
Shaun sighed, knowing that while he could push this mans buttons, and even he wasn’t fool enough to believe that anyone would be foolish enough to send a teen out into the wilderness while going through withdrawals. It was an incredibly painful thing to go through. There was no way in hell a kid could survive out there while going through so much pain for days, months…
“What the hell is she here for?” he asked, shrugging at his mother.
“Parent signature,” Taylor said, looking extremely pleased. He nodded to the man who held the bundle of papers in his hand. “Rules and regulations, as well as what we expect from you if you are to do this. We have the right to stop you at any time if we feel you are cheating, both with doing drugs, doing something to your given pokemon or buying illegal badges.”
Shaun narrowed his eyes as the cop continued on and on about rules and regulations, quickly becoming annoyed. He wanted to get the hell out of here and just sleep. “I’m being given a pokemon?” he asked snidely. “Who, from you?” he directed at Taylor.
“No, from the Professor in Shirk Town,” Taylor answered calmly. “Along with any others that happen to be there, but don’t worry, I’ll be there to escort you there and make sure everything goes by smoothly. The Professor, despite his many concerns and protestations, has cooperated several times with this event.”
Shaun slumped and looked away, thinking deeply. Go on some screwed up journey or go to juvenile hall and then prison… ****. “When does this training thing start?”
“As soon as we fill out the paper work and have them approved will we know the date and time.”
“So, what? You just gonna keep me locked up until we get the call?” Shaun asked, signing his name with the pen given to him. He all but tossed the papers back at the frazzled man who in turn gave it to his mother. She was only too happy to sign, eager to get him out.
“Don’t be absurd, Shaun,” Taylor said exasperatedly.
“So once this is done I’m free to go?” Shaun drawled, fisting a hand in his hair as he looked up at the man.
“Again, Shaun, don’t be absurd, you still have to pay the drug charges.”
Shaun could hear his mother curse him, but he paid her no mind. These people were out of their minds if they truly expected him to accomplish this. Pokemon training… it was not something he had ever thought about doing except when he was maybe eight, but laws only permitted sixteen year olds and up going on their journey, so suffice to say as he got older he just didn’t care. Besides, Shirk Town was a boat ride away, and when one lives in a poor neighborhood like him, you’ve only got enough money for a few days or drugs, and Shaun happened to do both.
“Shaun,” Taylor said carefully, leaning down next to Shaun, looking at the teen intently. “This may be your only chance, don’t screw this up.”
Shaun looked away with a snarl. “Whatever.”
“Hopefully that attitude of yours will change as well.” With a grim nod from Officer Taylor, the papers began to get processed.
“Freakin’ Trapinch’s,” Shaun growled, rolling off of an incredibly worn and beat up old couch. His lip curled as he glared at the little pincher mouthed pokemon creating a major hole in one of the few conveniences under this shithole bridge.
“Pii,” the ground type cackled, snapping its jaw shut a few times just to make those annoying little clicks on purpose. It gazed haughtily at Shaun before jumping off the couch and used Dig to burrow away. Probably to create more havoc.
“I hate those things,” Shaun hissed, leaning back against the ruined couch. He glared as he heard low chuckles and eyed the Croagunk sitting atop the couch, its cheeks expanding with each breath. “You’re useless,” he spat.
“Croo,” Croagunk crooned, lifting its fingers to show off the glowing purple tips.
“Now, now,” a new voiced interjected. “Poor Croagunk here gives you one last goodbye hallucination and all you can do is insult it?”
“**** off, Jake,” Shaun snarled, finally getting to his feet in a huff. He stuffed his hands into his pockets and turned to turn his hostile look at the new boy, Jake, one of the many drug dealers that roamed this ****** town.
There were as many drug dealers as there were those damn Trapinch’s. Which was saying a lot because while people had Rattata as the pest problem, Shaun’s town had to deal with Trapinch. He supposed that since the gym dealt with dragon pokemon they had, at one point, gone overboard with breeding. Now there were Trapinch burrowing everywhere and the occasional Vibrava that buzzed about. There was even the rare sighting of Flygon’s, but mostly in spring.
Shaun could remember a blue colored Flygon had appeared one day and had lived under the bridge in a mulish way with the rest of the deadbeats. It had a crack in one its eye things that Shaun thought looked like goggles and was missing half of one antenna. He supposed it had been abused like them. It had cheered rather viciously whenever a fight arose. Shaun was usually the one in those fights, and he could always remember that dark and amused glint the strangely colored Flygon had given him each time.
And then one day it had disappeared and that was that.
“Really, Shaun,” Jake said, “there’s no need for you to be pmsing like this. If you really don’t want to do this ******** trainer thing, just go to jail.” Jake shot the dark haired teen a smirk and held out a joint.
“Cute,” Shaun growled, “but then who would be the one to deliver your damn cargo when you needed someone?”
“Whether or not you’re in jail or taking off on this experiment, you’re no longer my delivery boy.” Jake stuck out his tongue for good measure as Shaun all but snarled like an animal. “Just think of this last one as a gift from friend to friend.”
“Gunk corak,” the poison toad pokemon croaked heartedly, finding their conversation amusing as he hopped over to Jake and clung to his shoulder like a leech.
Shaun turned away with a sneer. “Where’s whatsername?”
Jake snorted. “Still haven’t even learned her name after all this time? How long have you been screwing her again?”
“Watch it, Jake. I’m honestly not in the mood.”
“What, its true, ya bastard.” Jake shook his head before turning serious. “Honestly, man, just let it go.”
Shaun turned away and began walking deeper under the bridge, Jake hurrying to catch up. The bridge was directly under the freeway so there was hardly ever a time it was quiet. The whole cement area was covered from top to bottom in graffiti. A few trashcans with lit fires were about, keeping the punks that resided under this broken refuge warm, as well as a few Trapinch’s, though that was unsurprising.
“Seriously,” Jake continued. “You’re leaving. She knows it, you know it, and everybody knows it. No use in dragging things around, ya know?”
Shaun shoved Jake away as the brown haired boy tried to tug him away, relishing that he was so much bigger than the other boy.
“Gunk,” Croagunk glowered, giving a warning look as he began hopping alongside of them. The tips of his fingers glowed, just in case he would have to protect his master.
Shaun stormed his way into the crowd of teens, sneering as they gave him jeering looks and taunting calls. Every single one of these bastards knew he wouldn’t be here any longer. Not as if they cared, even if his face was well known thanks to just living here for seventeen years and starting too many fights.
It wasn’t until Shaun found himself at the back, the very end of the bridge that led into the main street and was held up by ugly towers that had been worn down by all sorts of weather conditions and poor graffiti art that he found her. A girl of seventeen with long, dirty blond hair that had more tangles than a rat’s nest and a mess of makeup on her beautiful face. Her eyes, which had been closed, opened as he came closer to reveal somewhat clouded blue eyes.
Still a bit hung over, it seemed.
But what got to Shaun was the filth lying over her. It had shaggy brown hair and a get up of black clothes with more studs and silver spikes than was necessary, and it was dead asleep.
“What the hell is this!” Shaun roared, grabbing the boy off his girl and throwing him to the ground. “Adam!”
The bigger boy was quick to his feet, already shoving Shaun back. “What the hell, man!”
“What the hell?” Shaun mocked. “What the hell?” he snarled gesturing at the girl already sitting up on the beat up chair.
“Shaun, let it go,” she snapped, black mascaraed eyes glaring deeply at Shaun.
The dark haired boy ignored her and pushed the boy, Adam, back. Even if the kid was thicker and a little taller than Shaun, he still stumbled back somewhat, only to throw a punch.
“What?” Shaun sneered as he rubbed at the blood dribbling out of his mouth. “Can’t get your own girl to screw so you have to steal one?”
Adam roared and jumped at Shaun. “Idiot!” the other roared. “You’re out of this **** hole, so that means she’s got no one.” He gestured wildly at the dirty blond, and by now a crowd had gathered. The lot of them were jeering and making a few cackling calls. Adam glared at Shaun. “Taking the ***** way out, I hear.”
Shaun shoved the other boy away again, expression absolutely livid. “I just know how to avoid jail,” he said as his lip curled in distaste at the other boy before he turned to the still sitting girl. He sauntered forward and leaned far over her, but the girl held no fear, was completely intimidated, and that was why Shaun had loved screwing her. “What was I to you?” he growled lowly.
She gave an exasperated chuckle that held no amusement.
Shaun’s gaze darkened. “What was I!” he screamed at her.
“You were a great memory,” she told him softly, no more than a whisper and with no care that there was a crowd. “What do want from me?” She allowed a humorless smile to grow wide. “I’m screwing him.”
Shaun stared deeply, racooned eyes fierce.
The smile disappeared. “You were a friend, and someone I loved.”
The stare deepened before a bitter sneer appeared. “Well I don’t love you,” he said coldly. “You’re nothing, not even a memory.”
A similar bitter sneer appeared on her face. “Nice tattoo then,” she whispered into Shaun’s ear before drawing back. She gazed up at him. “What was my name?”
Shaun drew back, thoroughly disgusted. Again his lip curled as he gazed at Adam. “Keep her,” he snarled. “All she’s good for is a lay.” And with that he stomped away. Away from all the people who were dead inside and haunting eyes and away from the loud “Screw you!”
“You’re late, Shaun,” officer Taylor said without even glancing up from his paperwork. His response was the door to the police station being slammed shut with a loud bang. “I see goodbyes went smoothly.”
“I’m not in the mood,” Shaun snarled as he slammed his heavy black backpack on the desk.
Taylor ignored the way the receptionist gave a disdainful sniff by his side as he grabbed the bag. “We’ll leave in a few minutes,” Taylor said, not even bothering to level his gruff voice out. He knew pity or being soft on kids like Shaun had a negative effect. “We’ll just go through your belongings, reread your rights and rules before we take the ferry over.”
Shaun gave a sour grunt before taking a seat and planting his feet on a separate one.
Taylor shook his head sadly and prayed to whatever deity was out there to keep the rebellious teen safe.
“Let’s see here,” Taylor murmured as he emptied Shaun’s belongings. He found several jeans, shirts and two jackets that were mostly black or dark colors. Also a few bracelets and belts. Taylor also found several bags of junk food but was happy to see a decent amount of canned food that could last maybe two or three days if Shaun rationed it carefully. He probably wouldn’t.
“Didn’t bring much, did you?” Taylor said as he tied a stuffed sleeping bag to the black backpack and handed it to Shaun. The boy shrugged. “Alright, now spread ‘em.”
“Whatever,” Shaun muttered as he spread his legs a bit and leveled his arms out while the officer patted him down.
“Money, cigarettes and a switchblade,” Taylor said as he eyed the items. He handed the first two objects back and held the weapon carefully. “I will return this to you as you leave,” he said and pocketed the items. “And only because I know you need more than a little beast out in the wild.”
Shaun shrugged, not caring.
Taylor looked at the young man before him. “Shaun,” he said quietly. “You have the chance to make something for yourself.” Ignoring the heated glare and attempted shrug, Taylor placed a firm hand on the dark clothed boy’s shoulder and squeezed. “Make people proud of you.”
With another forceful shrug, Shaun removed the hand from his shoulder. “Let’s just get there,” he said with a low growl.
The ferry was an uneventful half hour. Shaun stood outside on the rails with his little watch dog a few feet away watching the Wailmer swim below and smoke a pipe. A few scrunched up their noses and moved away, and despite himself Shaun felt terribly amused. The man was alright, but he would rather drop dead than ever admit that to anyone.
“Muur,” a rather loud voice cawed.
Shaun turned his head slightly to the side and frowned. “Get out of here,” he told the bird. It was black with a rather crooked beak and the feathers on its head looked a bit like a hat. The bird ignored him and gave a taunting caw again.
Annoyed, Shaun waved his arm near the bird, setting it a flight with an affronted caw and promptly tried to bite his hand. “Krow!”
Shaun pulled back just before his fingers were nipped and flipped the bird off. “Stupid bird.”
“It’s a Murkrow, you know,” a voice said.
Shaun turned around with an upturned lip, disgust evident on his face. He just didn’t start conversations all that much and he especially hated it when strangers tried to interact with him. Thanks to his look and that ******** where people do judge a book by its cover most people tended to stay away from him.
“What?” Shaun snarled.
The boy blinked, obviously taken back with Shaun attitude and was silent for a moment. That gave Shaun time to look the boy over. He had rather long black hair that was pulled up into a low and small ponytail at the base of his neck while his bangs, which were too short, was messily splayed about his head thanks to the wind. He had strange silver eyes that held a sharpness to them as well as hidden knowledge.
“It’s a Murkrow,” the boy said again, this time slightly wary. He watched Shaun with a narrowed look and Shaun was pretty sure the boy was sizing him up as well. “The pokemon you just shooed away,” he finished, this time firmly. Shaun briefly wondered if this boy was raised in a rich area. He had a certain accent about him that came with living in a well-off home.
“Oh.” Shaun looked back to see the black pokemon disappearing into the clouds, its annoyed caws no longer within hearing range. He turned back to the other boy, aware that officer Taylor was paying attention, even if he did look lax while smoking that awesome pipe of his.
“If I’m guessing right, I take it you’re heading to the lab in Shirk City for a pokemon.”
Shaun frowned. “What makes you say that?” he snapped.
The boy, still a little unsure of Shaun’s attitude but still expecting a rude response, shrugged. “You look about sixteen, the legal age to begin training in this region, a large bag of supplies…” The boy trailed off and gave an amused smile that seemed rather bitter. “And no one would ever just visit Shirk City.”
Shaun snorted. Shirk City, despite it having a pokemon lab and professor, was still a poor town. Not as poor as his, mind you, but the houses were made of a poor clay mould that, while as hard as cement, easily cracked and broke under extreme heat. The town was too small for decent work or wage, but the people survived. It had plenty of land and meadows, but the housing and shops were poor. The only thing made out of good material was the lab, and that was made out of cement and metal.
“So what if I am?” Shaun asked, voice snarky and turning his back on the other boy to lean against the rail and look down at the water.
The boy was silent. “Was simply trying to make conversation to my fellow starter,” he said, voice a bit miffed. Shaun gave the boy a glance and watched him shift his brown pack carefully on his shoulder. The kid had a strange look, one that Shaun sometimes saw in early runaways before they ran back home, finding that the world was too tough. He wondered if this kid was a runaway as well, but that wouldn’t make sense, what with how rich his clothes appeared.
“Where you from anyway, kid?”
The boy gave an annoyed glare. “I’m seventeen,” he hissed. “Probably older than you.”
Taylor gave a coughed laugh.
“Seventeen too,” Shaun said jadedly, eyes basically drilling holes into the boy, trying to understand why this complete stranger was still talking to him when so many had backed away or at least started a fight. “So?” he continued snidely, “Where ya from?”
The boy continued to frown, but if Shaun didn’t know better, he’d say the kid was growing uncomfortable. “Saffron City, from Kanto,” he murmured. “You?”
“Rich kid, eh?” Shaun grinned fiendishly, completely ignoring the question. Taylor gave another cough, only this was a warning.
How far could a kid purse his lips? “I don’t believe you answered my question,” he said coldly.
Shaun gave a bark of laughter. This kid had some bite. Lucky for him Shaun was feeling far too sulky to throw a punch. Instead, he pointed a thumb behind him. “From that piece of **** Apala.”
“You do realize Apala has the strongest gym leader in this region, as well as many strong and rare dragon pokemon, don’t you?”
“Tch, nothing more than a bunch of Trapinch running around,” Shaun growled. He really didn’t like the little burrowers. “ ‘Side’s, I live downtown.”
This time the boy allowed a large, impish grin to appear. “Poor kid, eh?”
The arm that shot out and latched onto Shaun’s shoulder was lightning fast, and for good reason too as the dark haired boy let out an angry snarl that would put an angry Ursaring to shame as he tried to stomp towards the pompous brat and lay one into him. Taylor pulled Shaun back quickly, hearty laughter churning Shaun’s blood even more.
“Now, now,” the cop laughed, holding tight to Shaun, “you deserved that.” He grinned at the boy, only to realize said kid was looking horribly contrite.
“I’m sorry,” the boy said quickly, voice courteous with the accent of a well upbringing. He really did look apologetic. “I often let my loose tongue get the best of me.”
“Stuff that tongue up someone’s…”
“It’s all good,” Taylor interrupted, finally releasing Shaun before giving him a dark warning look. “Shaun’s mouth is just as loose, if not more.”
Shaun’s lip curled as he and the other boy glared at one another.
“I suppose I’ll see you at the lab in another hour,” the boy finally said, voice polite but eyes burning with pride and strength. With that he turned around and left Shaun and Taylor alone.
“****ing bastard,” Shaun growled, slamming his fists on the metal fence.
Taylor gave another round of barking laughter, truly looking amused and delighted. “You know, if I didn’t know better, I’d say this was the beginning of… oh, what is that trainer slang? Ah yea, a rival.”
Shaun turned his acid stare on the cop. “Screw you.”
Shirk Town truly lived up to its name – the town of stone. Well, ok, maybe it really didn’t, since with that sort of name people would think of massive boulder’s carved into homes or even mountains hammered and dug into to create homes. Shirk town was a place made of stone paste, and it was honestly a strange sight to Shaun. He had lived under smoked filled skies and trashy little allies with equally trashy homes.
The laboratory, however, was another story. Three stories high and all made out of silver steel that glinted with a seemingly deadly light. There were high fences surrounding the frontal area, and Shaun had no doubt that there were fences in the far back where pokemon were held. On either side of the large entrance was a statue of an Arcanine in a sitting position. A guard dog through and through, even in stone.
The locked gate had already been opened, but flying above the laboratory were a few Fearow that had metallic claws attached to their talons. On such a day, where rare pokemon were being given out to novices, there would always be attempted theft, and thus such precautions were insured.
Shaun wasn’t the first one to arrive – not that he believed he would – but for the first time, he began to feel slightly intimidated. He had a single year to get all eight badges of his region without screwing up. These kids that surrounded him, walking through the gate with laughter and conversation, were going into this with open arms. Yea, he doubted these spoiled kids could ever last in the real world – the true world where no one, not even a pokemon, watched your back. And, for the first time, Shaun was beginning to wonder if he could really do this.
He didn’t know a thing about pokemon. Yea, he knew of them, but had never had to be with them on an intimate level of bonding or whatever. All he had were the wild pests or the occasional beast that sent him running. Now, he had to deal with them in the wild, not to mention his own. Crap, he would also have to capture some too.
“Let’s go,” Taylor said, clapping Shaun on the back. His voice was serious and body stiff. He was back in cop mode as he made Shaun walk in front of him and into the towering lab, and he held just the simplest of pity for the boy. “Don’t do anything rash,” Taylor warned quietly, walking past a few staring teens. Not a single one of them had their parents there to babysit them.
“Screw you,” Shaun growled, shrugging the offending hand off and all but stamping past a blond girl staring quite blatantly at his attire.
“Shaun,” Taylor growled, once again grabbing the boy and twisting him around to face him. The boy reacted instantly and pushed the man back, body upright and proud, arms a little spread in a ‘What? Come get some, *******’ look. Typical punk, Taylor thought bitterly. “Keep walking,” he told the passerby’s that had stopped to see what was happening. A flash of his badge had them walking “Keep your cool,” he growled lowly. “There’s a commissioner coming to oversee your leave and explain a few rules, but he and the pokemon professor have no hope for this little experiment and care little for attitude, so for once in your life, hold your tongue.”
Shaun grinned like the bastard he was and stuck out his tongue and grabbed hold of it.
“Funny,” Taylor said with a sigh, truly looking tired.
The two finally entered the lab. It was much less intimidating inside, but a slight growl to Shaun’s side had him jumping back with a snarl and nearly knocking down a brown haired boy with square glasses. A Growlithe stood guard with a typical brute security guy. The man even had sunglasses on despite the fact that he was inside. Just like all those other douche bags.
“Officer,” the man greeted, voice deep as he saw Taylor flash his badge. He gave Shaun a sneer. “And here’s the little delinquent. Not hard to tell, especially with Fang’s quick reaction. Good boy,” the man praised to the cliché named dog pokemon.
“This is Shaun,” Taylor told the man, voice cold. “And I would appreciate a level of professionalism. You’re here to set an example, but if you can’t handle that I can find another escort to the commissioner and professor.
The man flushed a horrible radish color, much to Shaun’s amusement. He even deigned Taylor a smirk. “Tha… that won’t be necessary,” the man said, aware of all the whispers and giggles from the surrounding teens that had paused to stare at the scene. “If you’ll follow me,” he said strictly, glaring at Shaun as if it were his fault. The Growlithe even growled at Shaun for his master, which made it all the more amusing. He flashed the man the finger when he had his back turned.
“If you’ll all follow me,” a feminine voice called out to the rest of the teens as Shaun walked away with Taylor by his side.
They entered a private office with a large desk with bundles of papers about in neat piles, four separate computer screens off to the side of the large plush chair sitting behind the wooden desk and woman sitting on said chair. Her hair was up in a tight bun, not a single auburn hair out of place. Her lips were pressed in a strict line as she gazed at Shaun with cold silver eyes. Upon his arrival she stood and went next to a stiff looking man wearing an extremely wealthy suite with slicked back brown hair. He too gazed at Shaun with a cold look.
Shaun gave the man a strange stare. He looked a little familiar.
“Officer Taylor,” the woman greeted with a nod. “I am Professor Leef,” she said, eyes glancing at Shaun’s snort coldly. “I would have preferred to the two of you have been here earlier than those that deserve to be here.”
Again Shaun snorted. “Not like I wanna be here,” he mumbled under his breath, peering haughtily at the female professor through thick eye liner eyes.
“Be that as that may, Mr. Tess,” Professor Leef continued coldly, “you are here. I am heavily against it. Dealing with pokemon is a large responsibility—”
“And that’s why Kanto give out pokemon to ten years olds,” Shaun muttered with a sarcastic grin.
“—and very few are truly fit to deal with them, and those that succeed are those that truly want – no, strive to be with them.” Damn, this woman could freeze the ocean. But at least she had nice tits, Shaun thought as he stared. “However, the wishes of many pokemon professors, as well as my own, were ignored and commanded by the government’s scientists that have no emotional attachments to anything to go along with this experiment.”
Shaun stared with a bored look. Yea, yea, he got it. No one liked the thought of kids with one foot in jail being given a chance to do what many others can only ever dream of doing. How could such people be trusted with the most important creatures of their planet?
“There will be very strict rules.” Professor Leef gestured for the harsh looking man to proceed.
“I was already told the rules,” Shaun said, voice uncaring. He could feel Taylor tensing up. Shaun knew the man was trying to send him mental waves to keep his trap shut.
“Then you’ll hear them again,” the commission said imperiously, eyes meeting Shaun with a gaze that told the boy he considered him less than the grime he stepped on. “The first rule is to keep you from doing what you shouldn’t have done in the first place.” Was it Shaun’s imagination, or was there a slight growl to the man’s voice? “You are to do absolutely no drugs, and if given prescriptions it must be called in at the nearest station or to Apala station.”
Shaun just stared, face creased with boredom and teen fury.
“Rule two: Upon entry of town, city or village, you must report to the nearest police station at once. If you have not done so and been within the city for the first twenty-four hours or more you will get a warning. You have three warnings – each one requiring a full four days up to a week and a half in jail depending on the fault at hand. After the third warning you will be removed of your pokemon and sent back to your home town where the original penalty will be issued immediately."
The commissioner paused and looked up at the security officer with the Growlithe. “Proceed to put the tracking device on Mr. Tess, Mr. Arkly.”
The guard, now known as Mr. Arkly, nodded importantly and brought out a black ankle cuff and strutted toward Shaun.
“I will do it,” Taylor said coldly, watching Shaun look murderous. “He’s my responsibility, after all.” Mr. Arkly shrugged and tossed the device to Taylor, whom caught it swiftly. “Jeans up, Shaun,” Taylor said softly, all coldness gone.
With a furious glare, Shaun lifted his leg, flinching heavily as the device snapped shut on his left ankle. ****ers, he thought savagely.
“I have rules of my own,” Professor Leef said declared suddenly. “If there is to be any abuse, physical or mental, Mr. Tess, I will assure you that you will be locked up before you could even say pokemon.” Her face was absolutely acid. “I don’t care how small, or how little warnings you get, I will take the pokemon away from you myself. Understood?”
Shaun stared a bit impassively, not at all intimidated by this woman. “Crystal,” he sneered.
The professor stared at him, gaze boring into him with that threat. “Then we shall proceed,” she said, body stiff and hating. The woman cared deeply for pokemon, and if this boy dared lay a hand on an innocent pokemon all because of her, she would never forgive herself.
And Shaun followed behind, feeling as if he were dragging a ball and chain.
A nice mood created, and the sentences and paragraphing flow nicely. Nice uses of punctuation.
SUBJECT MATTER (C)
The mood was well created, but the subject matter (drugs, teenage themes, etc.) does not suit the medium (i.e. Pokemon). Let me make this absolutely clear: I am not flaming you for this, but maybe you have chosen the wrong medium to express your theme. This would work better in an original writing piece, or even in a canon that already holds the subject matter that you have included in this piece.
Fanfiction should be used to create pieces that have a connection (even a vague one) to the original canon that you are following. Pokemon would never ever use this kind of mood to communicate a theme, but nice experimentation with an original idea.
A great effort, but perhaps the wrong medium.
I like mapping :D
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@yikkayuk - I wanted to thank you for the review, and do understand where you're coming from. It is a bit slow in the beginning, but pokemon will be the major point of the story. Despite this story being darker than what the show is like, that is what fanfiction is for - to be different than what it is. Again, thanks for the review, and hope you enjoy the rest.
The moment Shaun stepped into the room with the rest of the upcoming trainers all eyes fell on him. He paused, unsure, before giving his usual glare. Very few diverted their eyes, far too curious to know why he had to talk to the professor ahead of them.
“I’m sorry about the delay,” Professoe Leef called out, startling Shaun. Her cold exterior was completely gone and replaced with a cheerful woman that looked absolutely thrilled to be here. Hell, she even looked younger. “I am sure each and every one of you is excited!”
There was a round of cheers, gazes no longer directed at Shaun as he slunk in amongst the others. A few still gave him curious glances.
“I know that my aide explained what was necessary in place of my lateness,” Professor Leef said with an apologetic look as she gestured at a man in a white lab coat who gave a sheepish smile and wave. “But I have one last thing for you all, and if you would just follow me, I’d like to show you.” She held a secretive smile as she led them away.
Curious, everyone was shown outside where they all stood on the large lawn; even the commissioner.
The professor’s voice turned serious once they had all settled on the grass and turned their attention on her. “You are all about to take your very first step into something life changing. Believe and listen to me as I tell you this is no easy journey. You are all young men and women about to make your mark into this world, and the road you have chosen will be a harsh one.
“Some of you are from very different regions. This region, Lenore, is very unusual. Its entire structure is unlike any other, and thus the pokemon you encounter will be different, fiercer, in order to survive. You too must become a survivor.” Professor Leef now smiled warmly. “But you cannot survive alone.” Mutters began to grow excitedly. “Yes,” the woman said, gesturing to her aide to bring out a large a box where he simply put it on the floor. “You and your pokemon, who will become like family, will be there.”
Cheers, hoots and hollers sounded out. Shaun just stuck his hands into his pockets.
“And now we begin. We start by those who arrived first.” The professor laughed heartily at the groans and ‘yes’s!’ that erupted. “Just reach into this box and pull out a single pokeball and receive a metallic hooked belt to hold your pokeballs and pokedex that acts as a map, phone, transportation device for items to your pc – though pokemon will have to be transferred at a center – and, of course, an information data base on the region, route and pokemon. If you check your pc you will see that we have given each of you pokemon food that should last up to two days if used wisely. Remember, pokemon are living beings, and anyone caught abusing their pokemon will have their pokemon revoked instantly and answer to the law.”
Shaun scowled as she stared straight at him.
“Now let’s begin, shall we?”
It turned out there were thirty of them, and the wait was killer. Idly, he did begin to wonder what sort of pokemon he would get. All the starters from Kanto, Johto, Hoenn and Sinnoh were provided, as well as a few ‘surprise’ ones. He didn’t care what he got, so long as it was strong.
“Alexander Broderick,” came the next name.
Shaun finally looked up at the sound of the name, more curious about the strange name than the actual going on of things. He blinked as he noticed it was the same boy that had talked to him on the boat.
The kid, Alexander, walked up to the box, face relaying excitement. He glanced at the commissioner, and Shaun felt his eyebrow lift as the boys demeanor turned into that of an obedient guard pokemon. Prideful and wary. It was weird, but Alexander calmly stuck his hand into the box and pulled out a red and white pokeball before he was handed a brand new pokedex. He gave a respectful nod and made his way back into the crowd. He paused as he passed Shaun before giving him a soft smile. The coolness that had been in his eyes disappeared as he gave Shaun that smile, and for the life of him Shaun could not understand why warmth was being directed at him of all people.
More people were called, and soon Shaun was the only one standing there without a pokeball. He looked up and met the gaze of Professor Leef. She truly looked like she didn’t want to call on him, and for that he smiled smugly at her.
“Shaun Tess,” she finally called out. Her voice came out slightly bitter, but her face remained neutral and professional. Her eyes, though, were another story. They were still as cold as usual, but they were just daring him to make a mistake, prove that people like him didn’t deserve a chance like this.
Shaun sauntered forward, aware that the rest were whispering about him. Apparently these brats had never seen a punk before. Or at least one that dressed like one. He walked up to the box and eyed the contents.
Inside was a single pokeball. It looked a little smudged, as if being on the bottom had dirtied it. It looked strangely lonely in that large box, being the only one and all. He reached inside and grasped it carefully, marveling a bit by how weird this all was. Turning, he took the pokedex and belt offered begrudgingly without a backwards glance and moved towards the back.
“And now that you all have your pokemon…” The professor began to make some speech or something, but Shaun had zoned out and was now staring at the pokeball in his hand, thoughts running wild.
Damn he needed a cigarette.
“I know what you are,” a voice hissed in Shaun’s ear. Shaun drew back in disgust as he felt hot breath tickle his ear. He scratched at his ear and turned to glare at the culprit. It was a boy smaller than him, though a little broad shouldered. Still, nothing compared to Shaun.
“You got somethin’ ta say?” Shaun asked, snorting quietly at this brat.
“Yea, I got somethin’ ta say,” the boy said mockingly. Shaun’s arms tensed and he knew he would probably end up punching this dick. “I know why you’re here, rehab reject.”
Shaun stared, a frown on his face and arms folded. This kid knew who he was. That derogatory term, ‘rehab reject’ was a name for Shaun and others who were in his situation that was made in mockery of their apparent inability to get over their problems.
“And just why am I here?” Shaun drawled, back completely straight as he almost stared down at the boy. Even an inch gave him power over people, especially with his intimidating look. He didn’t care what people thought, he knew he was a right bastard, but he was a survivalist first and foremost.
“That’s just it,” the boy drawled. “You don’t deserve to be here.” Shaun leaned back as the boy leaned closer to his face. Disgusting. “Filth like you doesn’t deserve a pokemon!”
Shaun felt his eyebrows rise. “Why? Cuz I did a few bad things? Didn’t exactly follow the law? The world ain’t the pretty clean world you probably think it is. Grow up, kid.”
“I mean law breakers like you shouldn’t be allowed to have a pokemon!” the boy roared.
God damn it. Shaun had seen people like this kid before. Those with high morals and absolutely no tolerance for the smallest of rule breaking. They were crazy. That’s all there was to them. There was no changing their mind and what they believe to be right was therefore right.
“Is there a problem here?”
Both Shaun and the boy turned. The crowd had parted slightly to reveal Professor Leef gazing at the two with those fierce of eyes of hers, but that coldness was once again directed at Shaun.
“Yes, there is!” the boy cried excitedly, looking pleased to give the crowd a piece of his mind about the situation. “This kid shouldn’t be allowed a pokemon! He’s a lawbreaker!”
Shaun gave a bark of laughter. He just couldn’t help it. It was just so stupid. This kid was… was just a kid! He might be the same age physically, but mentally, no way in hell! He hadn’t dealt with someone with such a childish mindset of right and wrong since he himself was a child, but even then he had been jaded. That’s what happens when you grow up in the slums. Because of that, he just couldn’t find it within himself to care, not that he would anyway. He had never given a **** about what people thought of him.
“Wasn’t the recent pokemon champion arrested for illegal breeding enhancements with Ditto’s?” Shaun asked innocently, grinning widely like a fiendish Meowth.
The boy sputtered. “And he got his pokemon and license taken away!”
“Mr. Broderick,” Professor Leef said with much exasperation, drawing his name out as if she didn’t even want to interfere. “The issue between Mr. Tess and his situation is private, but I can assure you that…”
“He’s a rehab reject!” the boy yelled while Shaun gazed thoughtfully at the boy. Broderick? He had the same last name as that kid, Alexander? “I mean, just look at him! Street trash like him would probably just put his pokemon in an underground battle!”
Shaun had enough. Hands snapping forward, he brought the boy close to his face, fists entangled in his ugly shirt. The fabric was of rich material, and Shaun was willing to bet this naïve brat was rich as well. What was it with rich kids? They didn’t know ****.
“What you see in movies ain’t always true!” Shaun snarled, shaking the boy.
The kid was staring wide eyed and trying to get out of his grip. “Se-see!” he stuttered before growing confident. “He’s already violent!”
“Release him at once!” a voice rang out with so much authority that even Shaun released the kid in shock.
He bit the inside of his cheek in anger and turned. The commissioner was glaring at him furiously, and the crowd had backed away. Professor Leef simply looked exhausted, and Shaun wondered if she knew a fight had been destined to happen no matter what.
“Un-uncle!” the boy called out respectfully, face red as he bowed apologetically. “You know a guy like this doesn’t deserve the honor!”
Shaun narrowed his eyes. “Just wait until we’re in the wild,” he hissed.
“You will be silent, Andrew!” the commissioner barked, his face beginning to look murderous. “You are becoming an embarrassment. The matter behind Mr. Tess has been sealed, and you know what details are entitled towards Mr. Tess on his part.”
The boy, Andrew, flushed. “I’m sorry, uncle.”
Shaun grimaced. This was becoming too much. It was stupid, this spectacle, and as he rolled his eyes his gaze caught Alexander’s. The boy looked disgusted at Andrew’s display, and when he caught Shaun’s eye, well, he didn’t know what happened, but there was a moment of understanding the complete and utter ******** of this situation.
“If you have issues you take it where you can back it up,” the commissioner continues, obviously embarrassed by his nephew’s actions.
All thirty of the trainers were staring.
“How about they battle?” Taylor spoke up suddenly.
Shaun turned a thunderous glare on the man. Did he always have to out Shaun into these situations?
Taylor continued as if he hadn’t stopped, looking completely confused. “Didn’t you want a demonstration, professor?” The woman opened her mouth to argue, but Taylor was taking charge and even had the audacity to wink at Shaun. “And what better way than to let two of the new kids battle it out, show everyone how hard the first time is?”
A round of excited chatter broke up. There were different takes on Shaun. Some, whom had grown up in upstanding households, knew where Andrew was coming from. Pokemon abuse was one of the worst things a person could do, and people that looked and acted like Shaun were the type to do that sort of thing. Whoever said never judge a book by its cover obviously didn’t understand people. Some people were undecided while a few others just didn’t give a crap. They wanted to get out of here.
“Done,” Andrew called happily, grinning nastily at Shaun. “We’ll battle and I’ll show y—”
“I’ll battle him,” a voice interrupted.
Shaun turned, exasperated. Just leave him alone!
“Alex!” Andrew cried, outraged. “No, he insulted me, cous—”
“I’ll battle you,” Shaun said quickly, eyes locked on Alexander’s… Alex’s eyes.
He’s not gonna lie. Something about the kid seeking him out was a bit intriguing, but he had heard the last bit. These two were related, cousins or whatever. There was always a chance that this kid was just sticking up for his family, and since he ‘knew’ Shaun the longest he might think that gave him more incentive to battle.
“What! I’m battling you!” Andrew snarled angrily.
“And I don’t give a **** about you,” Shaun said bluntly.
“We’ll battle in three minutes,” Alex said, causing Shaun to shift in confusion.
“Why?” he demanded suspiciously.
Alex smiled, and it was that soft smile that Shaun had seen earlier. “Why, to get to know our pokemon first, of course.”
Why make such a demand? Could something happen between a trainer and pokemon if they hadn’t been properly introduced before battle that Shaun didn’t know about? Did Alex just want to know what pokemon Shaun had so he could plan ahead? Or did he really just want to meet his pokemon, his starter, before so he could get to know it despite the ******** situation? He honestly wanted to do it the right way?
Shaun grimaced. “Fine,” he muttered, watching the other boy hold out his pokeball, much to the crowd’s excitement.
With a burst of white light, a small, feathered bird appeared. It had its eyes shut at first before giving itself a rigorous shake that sent its orange and yellow feathers shaking. It opened its eyes and its small beak seemed to smile as it gazed up at Alex. “Toor!”
Alex, grin as wide as ever, leaned down. “Hello, Torchic,” he breathed, seemingly in awe.
Shaun looked away, finally starting to feel unnerved. He glanced at Taylor and immediately regretted it as the stupid man grinned widely. Raising the pokeball, Shaun watched as it burst open with a flash of white light, similar to how Alex had done. A small form began to take shape, and it was a little bigger than Torchic, Shaun thought happily.
When the light cleared, what appeared to be a blue dog standing on its hind legs appeared. It had black legs that were awfully long and had visible muscle. Maybe a jumper? It also appeared to have a type of bandit mask type look to it with blood red eyes staring up at Shaun haughtily with two little black dangle things that could probably be mistaken for ears or horns, but the thing already had two little ears atop its head.
Whispers broke out and Shaun could hear jealous words be spoken instantly.
I must say; i think that this is actually really good, and for some reason it attracts to me.
For a 16 year old; i have always wondered about stories like this, and this one is very intriguing and interesting, and i cant wait until the next update.
Good story and keep it up
@sheep261 - Thank you so much for the review! And I'm glad you like it, especially since I'm trying to appeal to an older crowd.
“I can’t wait to see what rare pokemon I get!”
“Dude, he’s got a Riolu!”
Shaun’s ears picked up that. At least the gossipers were helpful. He didn’t even know what this thing was. “A Riolu, huh?” he mused, staring down at the blue and black dog pokemon with a critical eye.
The Riolu stared up at him before giving a frown. It folded its arms and turned its head away with a “hmph”.
True shock ran through Shaun as he stared at the little beast. Weren’t pokemon supposed to be loyal to humans, especially starters?
“Are you ready?” Alex called out, startling Shaun out of his thoughts.
“Hey,” Shaun said harshly, unknowingly making the adults watch with an even more serious gaze. “Riolu, we’re gonna have a battle. Ya know, bashing faces and **** like that.”
Riolu, unused to such a way of talking, turned back to Shaun.
“Pokemon like to battle, right?” Hesitantly, almost as if hating itself for agreeing, the Riolu nodded. “Then go get that!” Shaun roared, pointing to the Torchic already standing at the ready.
The crowd instantly began cheering, each person eager to see their first battle as a trainer.
Alex grinned. “Alright then!” he shouted as Riolu, after one last bizarre glance at his trainer, jumped the distance and landed in front of his bird pokemon. “Torchic, use Scratch!”
“Riolu!” Shaun began, only to falter. His harsh, commanding voice died out instantly as he realized he didn’t know a single thing about his pokemon, much less moves.
“Toor!” the fire chick called out, running with surprising speed at the impatiently waiting Riolu. Its talons flung up dirt as it ran, and as Riolu had expected Shaun to give an order, it was literally frozen when nothing came, much to its disgrace and shock. So, with a battle cry that was quite impressive for the small pokemon, the Torchic jumped up high and slashed its talons harshly against Riolu.
“Luu!” Riolu cried out, staggering backwards and holding its stomach. It sharp teeth were clenched tightly and its face was twisted in fury. “Riolu!” it barked at Shaun, turning to glare at him as if it were his fault.
“Torchic, Peck!” Alex called amidst the laughter and cat calls.
Shaun cursed loudly, drawing more laughter as Torchic wasted no time and once again charged, its beak poised. With exact precision, it landed exactly three hits with that sharp beak on Riolu’s chest, almost exactly where it had attacked last time.
“Riiolu!” Riolu howled, jumping back to give the two more room. It snarled at Shaun.
“Shit, ****,” Shaun snarled, grasping his hair with both hands. What kind of attacks could he use that would work? What type was Riolu anyway?
“Another Peck, Torchic!” Alex’s voice came out a lot mellower, almost as if he were disappointed with how the battle was progressing.
As usual, Shaun’s anger overtook him and he shouted the first thing that came to mind, “Jump!” What? Pokemon could dodge as well.
“Lu,” Riolu grunted, long legs tensing before it basically sprang high into the air. “Riiio!” Riolu called mockingly over Torchic’s head where it did a little flip and landed safely, Torchic’s Peck power powering down.
“Another Peck,” Alex ordered with a contemplative look on his face.
Shaun scoffed. “Punch it in the face!” he ordered, grinning sadistically as he heard Professor Leef’s enraged exclamation in the background.
For just a second, Riolu looked confused, but soon a rebellious smirk grew and it charged at Torchic. Its tail flailed behind it as it ran quickly, paws light on the ground in a way that made it seem like it was floating. Its grin widened and blood red eyes glittered happily as Torchic too ran at it.
“Rick to!” Torchic called, beak striking out furiously as soon as the two came within range of one another.
“Ri! Ri! Ri!” Riolu grunted, swaying its body out of the way each time the beak struck out, just barely missing. Riolu’s feet were firmly planted, and as Torchic drew back to give another strike, Riolu struck out as well, palm out and nailing the fire bird directly.
Torchic immediately felt pain. First he felt the feeling of flying before the pain hit. And then realization hit as he realized the strike had been so strong it had sent him flying with one nasty bruise on his side. “Toooor!” Torchic cried out, body bouncing a few times and claws trying to dig into the ground for balance.
The cheers were louder than ever, and even a few were starting to cheer for Shaun. But that was just a few, mind you.
“Hell yea!” Shaun roared, right hand forming a fist in excitement. He couldn’t believe how much he was getting into this. Not in a million years had he ever thought he would be drawn like this.
“Torchic, are you alright?” Alex called out worriedly. His pokemon got up on shaky legs but gave an encouraging nod and turned to face Riolu with determination.
“Another punch in the face!” Shaun called out, not caring about the exasperated looks or outraged mutters.
He just grinned as his pokemon ran forward, an eager bound in that little body with its palm outstretched. Shaun narrowed his eyes, trying to remember a move that fit that look. He had been taught basics and moves at one point in his life in school. It was a fighting move… Mega Punch? Nah.
“Torchic, dodge!” Alex gave Shaun a grin when the other gave him a dirty look. “What, other pokemon can’t dodge?” Alex asked, voice playful as his pokemon narrowly skidded out of the way from Riolu’s palm.
“Lu!” Riolu exclaimed in shock, surprised that its attack missed. It turned to glare at Shaun again, almost as if him missing was his fault.
Shaun frowned. Damn, what was with this pokemon? “Pay attention!” he barked as the Torchic turned its head, but it was too late.
With a loud “Torr!” Torchic had already landed a hard Scratch attack on Riolu’s shoulder.
“Force Palm!” Shaun shouted, his eyes widening as he realized what just happened. Somehow, someway, he has remembered an attack that might fit this profile, but was that really it?
“Rioo!” Riolu howled, seemingly happy that its trainer finally new a move. His trainer, while not appearing to be an idiot and even looking intimidating, had seemed pretty clueless when it came to certain things, and Riolu had been right. Good thing that his trainer had a good instinct. “Rilu!” Riolu yelled, palm going out quick, striking the retreating fire type just before it got away.
A painful yelp escaped from Torchic as it stumbled forward; it’s back stinging from the hit. “Toor,” Torchic said lowly, head bent and panting. “Tor… tor… tor…”
It wasn’t the only one. Riolu had already gotten a few hits, and was panting slightly more, obviously more weakened. “Lu, lu…”
Shaun gritted his teeth. For some reason, he had though that this battle would last longer, but rationale told him that these were just beginning pokemon and had nearly no experience. Still, anger and resentment at the situation he was in override most common sense and he felt bitter that his pokemon wasn’t lasting. The pokemon he had seen in pits, illegal underground fights (apparently that Andrew brat had one thing right) lasted much longer. And the cockfighting Torchic's would have murdered this one by now...
“Come on!” he roared, taking Alex by surprise. The joy and commanding aura the boy had been excluding dulled as he stared at Shaun. He looked disappointed, but Shaun didn’t take in any of that. “You can last much longer!” Shaun called.
“Rio,” Riolu grunted, standing straight and nodding.
“Good, now Force Palm!” The command came out like a scream and a yell. It blended in with the crowd’s noise, but those who were listening carefully to everything he did could hear the anger, the wildness within.
“Riluu!” Riolu roared, face bitter and rage nearly as much as its trainer’s. It didn’t think it wasn’t angry for its trainer’s reasons, but it was angry that it was so tired, so weak so early in. With that roar, Riolu ran forward, palm forward and fur bristling. Its weakened condition made it falter in some of its steps, and that was what Alex had been waiting for.
“Crush Claw!” he called, excitement completely gone. Instead, he looked saddened that the battle would be over.
“Crush what?” Shaun muttered, watching his pokemon run forward. It was done, he thought savagely. His pokemon was faster and much bigger than that puny little… what the hell!?
Shaun watched, wide eyed as the Torchic literally bent its body like it was about to do the limbo. A smirk somehow made its way onto that tired beak as its right talon glowed a bright white.
“Lu,” Riolu winced, stumbling as it missed, eyes and mouth wide open, and began to fall over Torchic, but that’s what the fire bird had been waiting for.
With a righteous call, Torchic brought its glowing talon up, striking Riolu head on and literally sending the blue and black pokemon flying. Riolu let out a cough, arms flailing and eyes shut tight from the pain. It landed hard on its back with a grunt before a whine escaped from its lips.
“Get up!” Shaun called desperately, unable to believe what just happened, but Riolu just lay there. The little guy wasn’t unconscious. But it was breathing heavily and bruised.
“Rioo,” Riolu panted.
“Toor,” Torchic huffed, looking horrible. It walked with a limp and fell to its bottom but remained as vigilant as it could.
“Riolu, get up!” Shaun ordered loudly, and by now the crowd was beginning to quiet, wondering what was going to happen.
“Shaun,” Alex said hesitantly, pausing as they both stared at each other. It was the first time one of them had addressed one with their name.
“Rio,” Riolu groaned, drawing their attention. Red eyes glaring, Riolu slowly rose itself up to a sitting position, far more bruised than Torchic. “Rio…lu.” It sat there for a moment, deep breaths sounding eerily loud in the quiet crowd, before its eyes shut and it fell back, finally lying still.
Shaun stood mutely, fists shaking. The crowd was roaring, people beginning to shout congratulations at Alex and taunt him, but it all went right over Shaun’s head. “Shit,” he cursed under his breath.
The crowd began to cheer.
No problem for the review; this story is completely different from others i have read before.
Anyway, lets go on to the update now shall we.
1) Completely didnt expect the riolu at all; i had a different pokemon in mind (a houndour, but only because i forgot the "standing on its leg" part), so this made it quite nice and interesting
2) It was also nice to see a pokemon similar to Shaun, so i have the feeling that Shaun might prefer fighting types in the future, but who knows
3) Nice to see a could battle, with some good dialogue, unexpected moves. I felt that you had a really good description on the battle as well
4) Its good to see Alex winning, although Shaun didnt know any moves :/... but i sense a rivalry between these two.
So, my rating so far on this story is......9/10
Keep up the good work
“Both of you return your pokemon to their pokeballs and follow me to get them healed,” Professor Leef ordered loudly over the noise, walking over to them, but Shaun paid her no heed.
“Shit,” he cursed again. He couldn’t believe it; he was having a freakin’ panic attack! “Shit!” he shouted, voice going into the crowd and causing even more taunting.
“Can you believe that?” one whispered.
“What a sore loser.”
“That poor pokemon…”
More whispers erupted, but Shaun didn’t care. He just stared at his fallen pokemon, and a hand reaching behind him and raising his own arm spooked him enough to jump like a frightened Pichu. Dear god, what was wrong with him?
“Shaun.” It was Taylor. “Return your pokemon.”
That damn man. Always there when he wasn’t wanted. Still, shakily, Shaun raised his arm and returned his fallen pokemon. He swallowed thickly, calming himself down. He was freaking out because of a single, first, stupid battle. That damn mind of his, always so pessimistic. If this was how he battled the first time, how would he battle in the future? The same way – by losing. Screw that. He would beat this thing and laugh in everybody’s faces when he was given the let go.
“How did you use that strong attack?” Shaun asked suddenly, looking at Alex. He had calmed down, but his tone was accusing. That had been a strong attack, even if the Torchic couldn’t completely control its power yet.
Alex, whom was holding his pokemon carefully and smiling softly, turned his gaze on him. The smile was still there, but was dull. “I looked up my pokemon’s moves with my pokedex,” Alex said. He raised a brow. “You could have done the same thing.”
Shaun bristled at the tone.
“Yes,” Professor Leef said loudly, over the jealous muttering from the crowd. “All pokemon here have been born with an egg move. It is powerful, and it will take time to learn. You must train, just as the early masters did, in order to conquer these travels.” Professor Leef smiled warmly. “Now be off with you.”
The crowd began to depart slowly. Groups moved together while a few rushed off by themselves or some opted to stay behind to try and speak to the professor.
“Now follow me,” Professor Leef said.
Shaun and Alex followed, going past the commissioner. To his surprise, that cold gaze wasn’t on him, but instead Alex. That kid –Adam? Oh, Andrew – glared as well, but again it was at Alex. Shaun didn’t care, but he did wonder why. Weren’t they related or something?
“You did good, Shaun,” Taylor whispered.
“Shut up,” Shaun bit out, feeling tired.
Taylor just grinned. “And just imagine. You’ll have to do this everyday now.”
“Place your pokeballs onto the healing machine,” Professor Leef said, nodding toward a mechanical device that had little slots to hold pokeballs once they had entered the lab.
Shaun and Alex shared a glance before placing their pokeball’s onto the device. It lit up as soon as the professor pressed the start button, and Shaun watched with half lidded eyes.
“An excellent battle for your first time,” Professor Leef said to them.
“Thank you, ma’am,” Alex said quietly.
Shaun just shrugged.
“Though it was a bit harsher than necessary,” Professor Leef said, staring pointedly at Shaun. “There is a limit to how far you can push your pokemon.”
Again Shaun shrugged.
Gaze still cold, Professor Leef held out the two pokeballs. “These two boys are now perfectly healthy. Treat them good, and always check your pokedex for help. When you two attach your belts you can put your pokeballs on it magnetically.” As she handed the Shaun his pokemon, she truly wished like she could just say no, jerk her hand away from him, do anything, but she couldn’t, and for that, it hurt even more.
Shaun took his pokeball before reaching blindly for the brown belt he had pretty much thrown over his shoulder and onto his pack. He fingered his silver studded black belt before tying the brown belt through the first two holes and tying it tightly so that he still wore his belt and the new one hung off his hip like undone suspenders. It actually looked ok.
He placed the pokeball onto the belt, surprised by the belt all but pulling the pokeball out of his hand. Alex did the same, only he put his belt on normally. When he was done, Shaun turned to Taylor expectantly. The man stared for a moment before shaking his head in exasperation as Shaun held out his hand.
“Take care, kid,” Taylor said quietly, only for Shaun’s ears as he laid the pocketknife into Shaun’s waiting hand, well out of the others line of vision. “Don’t **** up.”
Despite himself, Shaun’s lip curled upward. “Right,” he said grudgingly. “Well, I’m outta here.”
“Shaun,” Alex called quickly before the dark haired boy could make it far. He looked back. “I look forward to our next battle,” he said seriously, eyes searching, and Shaun wondered, that if such a thing were possible, if the guy was trying to see into his soul.
“Yea,” Shaun said softly, shoulder’s shrugging. “Whatever.”
Despite the rude comment, Alex just grinned, his eyes warm.
Shaun rolled his eyes and finally pulled out the cigarettes he had been craving so badly. He grinning lightly at the outraged squeak from the professor and happily fit it into his mouth, right where it belonged and fumbled for his lighter.
“Finally,” Shaun breathed, exiting the lab.
No one else was around, not even the commissioner or that kid Andrew. He was alone. Nothing left but the road before him. A road that he would have willingly walked freely once, but not now. Now, he was forced to, and he couldn’t screw this up.
“Well, ****,” Shaun mused, blowing out smoke and beginning to walk.
YAY! UPDATE XDDD
I must, i am certainly enjoying this fanfiction; it is truely interesting. The only thing o my mind now is: What was Riolu's egg move? O.o
This i must know.
But anyway, good story and keep it up.
Like with all regions, beginning trainers in beginning towns had a small little path full of little pokemon to battle that would take only a day or two to travel if on foot or a few hours by bus or car. This town had its route, but it wasn’t quite so little.
Shirk City led into a mountain area with nearly a hundred different cliffs and paths that various rock and ground pokemon could hide away in or over their prey. The entrance to the route started at the beginning of a hill where it slowly went higher. If one wanted to get off the main path, one had to physically climb to different areas. While little man made paths had been made, mud slides, pokemon or just other people destroyed them in the end.
The name of this route was simply named Rocky Hills. A stupid name but went straight to the point. Obviously people had little to no imagination.
The walk from the lab to Rocky Hills would have taken a little under an hour. So Shaun took the bus, much like a few of his other fellow trainers. It took a little under twenty minutes to get there.
“Have a good day,” the big bellied bus driver grunted, opening the door to let off whoever was ready to get off. The bus stop was right on the edge of town, a five minute walk from right where the path started or ended, depending on how you came from it.
Shaun got off quickly. He had sat next to a window, lucky to get a seat when most of the bus was full, but an elderly woman that smelled suspiciously like Skitty’s and pee had sat next to him. It was enough to almost make him barf.
“Some people got a head start,” one boy said mournfully, jumping off right after Shaun.
About seven other trainers had gotten on the bus with him, having to wait a bit. They had missed the first one and had to wait an additional thirty minutes for one of the buses to get there. Most of the earlier trainers had gotten on, but there were always those supposed hardcore ones that were walking to Rocky Hills, not believing that short cuts – such as cars or any motor vehicles – should be used. At least not for such a short distance. Shaun didn’t give a ****, but what saved him an extra hour of walking was ok by him.
“Hey…” one voice said hesitatingly, and it took a moment for Shaun to realize that he was being talked to.
His head turned, body lax and hands stuffed in his pocket. His half smoked cigarette was resting over his ear. He had managed to smoke through two and had started his third before the bus came. Shaun wasn’t much of a chain smoker, but damn Mew he needed something.
“Yea?” He eyed the sandy blond boy. He was a lanky thing. Taller than Shaun by a lot and Shaun was six foot, but had that sort of scrawny muscle that came from outdoor activities rather than working out or going through puberty. “Whaddya want?”
“Is it true that you’re really a rehab reject?”
Shaun snorted. The boy looked truly curious. Kind of like a Sentret that wanted to explore every nook and cranny without fear of danger. “That’s what they say,” he muttered, taking his unfinished cigarette and relighting it. He started walking again.
“Wh-Hey!” The boy ran after him, not listening to the calls of the others calling him back. “What did you do?”
Shaun gave the boy a brief glance from out of the corner of his eye. “Ain’t really any of yur business, is it?” he drawled.
“No, I guess not,” the boy said honestly, not sounding like he particularly cared. He had a care free sort of voice and shot Shaun a grin. “But there’s no way you’d still be addicted to anything right now, is there?”
Shaun looked up at the sky. Addicted to something? Well, he was addicted to punching people in the face when they bugged him too much. “It’s the point, ain’t it?” he said, just throwing it out there. “Send addicted bastards like me out and see how long we last.”
The boy gave him a quizzical glance. “No, I mean…”
“Save it,” Shaun interrupted. “I don’t really care since I’m here now.” He sneered bitterly as the hill started to get steeper.
His converse shoes kicked at a few loose pebbles towards some of the trainers who were running past him to get ahead or start climbing up the ridges and cliffs that were forming. From this angle, he could see the mountain really starting to form and could see how high it could reach. Not too high. Small for a mountain, but a bit big for an overgrown hill.
The boy cleared his throat awkwardly. “Er, well, I’m James.” He held out his hand.
Shaun didn’t take it.
“And you’re Shaun.”
“No, I’m Jimmy.”
“But I heard…”
“Sarcasm, genius.” Shaun sighed heavily and stamped hard on the cigarette with a little more force than necessary. “Did you want anything else?”
“Er, not really,” the boy said lamely before brightening. “Oh! How about a battle!”
“Aw, come on. A trainer can’t say no to a challenge.”
“You can’t be sore about that last battle, are you? Everyone loses thei—”
James was brutally cut off as Shaun swirled around grabbed the tall boy by his shirt and bent his neck at an award angle to stare straight into his eyes. It might look strange or even funny if an onlooker were to have seen, but there was nothing funny about Shaun’s murderous expression or James’s horrified look.
“Let’s get one thing straight,” Shaun grit out, lip curled and teeth clenched in anger. “I don’t like people. Ever. I don’t like talking to them, or even looking at them, and being in this situation makes me hate people a lot more than usual. So unless you got somethin’ important to say, say it and get lost!”
James drew back quickly, the grip on his shirt finally gone and he stumbled back a few steps. “I-I was just trying to get to know you,” he said pitifully.
“I’m not like you,” Shaun said coldly. “I’m not here to make something out of myself, I’m not here on the dream adventure and I’m most definitely not here to make friends.” He turned away. “Now beat it.”
James stared after the dark dressed boy, anger finally showing when the dangerous other was further away. “I’m sure you won’t be thinking that when night falls! Plenty of dangerous pokemon at night, and no one will come to help you!”
Shaun ignored the boy. That was what he was good at, after all, ignoring others. He did his own thing, because when it came down to it, all he cared about was himself.
"Come out or something," Shaun muttered, a good hour later of hiking and chain smoking. His entire first pack was gone and all he had left was one more packet.
With a burst of white, the image of Riolu started to materialize until all the light was gone and the little blue and black dog had appeared. It blinked a few times before fixing its fierce red eyes on Shaun. It pointed a paw at Shaun accusingly, face looking enraged. "Riolu!" it barked loudly, a growl echoing throughout the area Shaun was in.
"Tch." Shaun sat down on an overlarge stone. "Don't give that look," he ordered. "You were the one that took the beating."
"Rii," Riolu growled, paw now lowered into a fist and trembling violently in anger.
Shaun scratched his cheek, completely unmoved by the display. "Please," he drawled. "I've had to deal with stronger - and much more pissed off - pokemon than you. Besides," he added to Riolu, "you attack me, and I just return you to your pokeball and never use you again."
The Riolu looked startled, eyes wide and unsure. "Riollu!" it hollered, once again pointing at Shaun accusingly.
"What? You think I can't buy a new pokemon?" Shaun didn't know if Riolu thought he was lying, but he had no other pokemon and he was apparently a pokemon trainer, so that meant he had to have pokemon that could battle.
Riolu again looked unsure, but there was a strange glint in his eye that Shaun easily picked up. Riolu was frightened.
"So let's get a few things straight," Shaun said, leaning back and stretching his back until there were a few, pleasurable pops. "You don't attack me, and you can battle all you want."
Slowly, Riolu nodded. His gaze was filled with distress. "Ri."
Shaun rolled his neck, gazing at Riolu carefully. He had a feeling about something. "As long as you battle, do your part, give absolutely everything, I don't care if you lose." Shaun's eyes narrowed as Riolu visibly started at that. "Although I would prefer if you won most of your battles," Shaun said dryly. It would be foolish of him demand a win every time.
"Luu," Riolu said softly, nodding warily.
"Just do that," Shaun said, standing and beginning to walk, "and I won't get rid of you."
Shaun visibly grinned, knowing for sure now that he had hit a spot – or perhaps the spot. "Think you can do that?" he asked over his shoulder.
Riolu gave a muffled snarl and caught up to him. "Ri lu ri!" it snarled, nodding furiously.
"Well good," Shaun said, voice nonchalant. "Now with that sort of drive in you, let's find a pokemon."
With a baleful nod from Riolu, the two decided to finally leave the main trail and climb up one of the cliff ridges.
"Riuu," Riolu purred, having successfully climbed up quickly. Shaun, whom had climbed fences and buildings, was not used to such surroundings.
"Shut it," Shaun grunted, tossing his backpack up. "Catch!" he called quickly, snorting as Riolu fumbled for the pack, just barely missing it and giving Shaun a heated glare.
"Ri," Riolu huffed, reaching down when Shaun had neared the top and grabbed hold of his wrist. Eyes widening, Shaun was easily hauled up the rest of the way. "Riolu," Riolu said, shoving Shaun's things back into his arms. No way would he start carrying his trainer's stuff.
"Stronger than I thought," Shaun murmured as he rubbed his wrist. "Hey, can you break a boulder?" he asked, remembering how some fighting types could smash pretty much anything.
Riolu gave Shaun a perturbed look but nodded. "Lu."
Exasperated, Riolu turned, eyes searching for a suitable rock before finding one that was easily the size of two Golems. "Rii," Riolu growled, palm going out before, with lightning speed, slammed down on the now piece of rubble. "Luu!"
Despite himself, Shaun whistled, impressed. "Wonder what sort of hide that Torchic has if it can survive a punch from you." Riolu gave a bitter look, obviously annoyed by the name of its defeater. "You got any other attacks?" Shaun asked, head craning about to check out his surroundings.
Directly across from him was another ledge, only that one had various holes going in and out of the mountain. There were little pokemon scuttling about that had a hard looking blue skin and tiny little trunks.
"Any long ranged attacks?" he asked his pokemon. His pokemon made a "Tch" sound. "I'll take that as a no," Shaun said, voice dry as he took out his pokedex to point at the bulky little beasts. "Too bad, since that would have been an easy win." He received a dirty look.
Phanpy, came the robotic voice of his pokedex. It is strong despite its compact size. It can easily pick up and carry an adult human on its back. It swings its long snout around playfully, but because it is so strong, that can be dangerous.
Shaun watched the playful pokemon with a raised eyebrow. They honestly didn't look that strong, but when one – soon followed by several – curled up into a ball and rolled down the side of the mountain and slammed through rocks and sending debris everywhere, Shaun found that his initial opinion was a tad bit wrong.
Shaun looked away from the rolling pokemon when he felt a tug on his sleeve. He turned to look at his own blue pokemon, blinking when the dog pokemon was pointed forward. He looked over, grinning a bit darkly as he saw what it was. He lifted his pokedex once more.
Geodude, the Rock Pokémon. Geodude has incredibly high defensive power, making it virtually resistant to any physical attacks.
"Except fighting type moves," Shaun muttered, eyeing the bulky pokemon hopping about not even ten feet away, easily blending in with the surrounding rocks. He knew Geodude evolved into Golem, and those were some of the most monstrous and strong pokemon in the world. There was even an elite trainer that used one. "Show me what you've got, Riolu," Shaun ordered loudly, drawing the Geodude's attention.
"Geo!" the living rock pokemon called, raising its single pair of arms in a defense position.
"Riolu!" Riolu called out, giving his own battle cry as he jumped forward, arms out as well.
"Use Force Palm!" Shaun called.
Having already expected that particular order, Riolu had already been darting over before Shaun even finished his first word. With a ferocious growl, Riolu's palm shot out, but Geodude, surprising both Shaun and Riolu, blocked it quickly by grasping Riolu's palm within its own.
"Geo," Geodude grunted, wincing a bit. Its hand obviously hadn't been protected from the strike even if it was block.
"Riolu!" Riolu snarled, using its other palm to strike out.
With an even louder grunt, Geodude brought its other hand up and caught Riolu's paw. Now they were pushing furiously against each other, Riolu looking exceptionally enraged. "Geo," the rock pokemon smirked.
Eyes flashing, Riolu let out a loud snarl and wrenched its hands free. "Riio!" Riolu howled, actually spinning so fast its body actually became a blur and slammed its tail right into the rock type.
"Dddude eo," Geodude moaned loudly, a little more shocked than hurt by the swift move.
"Riio!" Acting quick, Riolu once again shot out, Force Palm finally hitting the rock pokemon directly.
With a deafening moan that made even Shaun wince, the Geodude was forced back. Its body slid dangerously close to the edge of the cliff before it dug its tough hands into the ground, effectively stopping its movements. "Geo!" the Geodude roared, pounding on the ground furiously that made loud banging sounds.
"Riio," Riolu growled, getting into a defensive position.
"Force Palm!" Shaun ordered. "Finish it!"
The Geodude frowned, eyes glaring at Shaun for a moment. It spat to the side before it raised its arms and, with a mighty slam, dug up a rather large stone. "Geooo," Geodude growled lowly, voice deep with a large grin splitting its face before it threw it right at the charging Riolu.
"Ri!" Riolu skidded to halt, red eyes becoming large. Its mouth dropped open, a strangled squeak escaping it before the large rock slammed right into it and knocking it flat on its back.
"Get up!" Shaun roared as the Geodude chuckled heartily and began to throw more rocks. ****, ****. Would his pokemon honestly be taken out by some wild Geodude?
"Ri," Riolu spat, rolling aside just as a rock smashed right where it had been mere moments ago. Thrusting its legs forward, Riolu jumped to its feet and, face fierce, struck out with its palms, shattering the large rock that very nearly took off its head. "Ri!" Riolu hooted mockingly, grinning smugly as a bit of dust wafted away.
"Dude," Geodude mumbled, looking wary. Hands digging into the ground, it tore up more rocks and threw them with even more vigor.
"Break them," Shaun said, voice becoming cold. "Just like before."
Riolu had already slammed another large stone, and was slowly walking closer and closer to the nervous rock pokemon, but he still gave Shaun an obedient nod. Geodude, trying to throw more and more rocks more rapidly, was soon losing control and having a harder time even coming close to hitting Riolu.
"Rio," Riolu grinned, palm smashing another large rock. His red eyes glinted almost demonically.
Shaun grinned, feeling his pokemons excitement. "Finish it," he purred, readying another pokeball, this one empty.
Geo!" Geodude gasped, backing up at the deadly command. The look in the humans' eye was more than enough for Geodude to know that the trainer wanted that order followed through thoroughly. With an angered grunt, Geodude wrapped its arms around its body and jumped off the cliff, just as the Force Palm was about to hit, and rolled down the side of the cliff.
Shaun gapped. "Wha-What the hell!" he roared, running over to the edge where he could see the little rock type disappearing into some trenches. Riolu walked to his side and stared down as well. "Can you believe that?" he snarled, gesturing with his thumb. Would all wild pokemon be like this?
"Ri," Riolu said dourly, disappointed that its opponent had fled so cowardly.
"Tch, there's gotta be something… there!" Shaun cried, pointing at a little Phanpy that had made it to his side of the cliff. Damn, he was really getting into this thing. But then again, with a strong team, the quicker he got this over with. "Force Palm!" he all but snarled.
The Phanpy, who had been snacking on some of the weeds growing out from under some rocks, looked up and gave a startled squeak that soon gave way to a pained cry as Riolu's attack hit.
"Ri," Rioulu said proudly, standing up straight as the ground type rose to shaky feet.
"Good, now use it aga… god damn it!" Shaun grabbed his hair with hands and pulled hard, unable to believe what was happening. The Phanpy, after getting to its shaky feet, turned into a ball and promptly ran away.
"Riiou," Riolu said bemusedly, a small purr coming from his throat. It truly was a hilarious experience.
"Let's go," Shaun snapped, voice sour. Damn, he would be out of cigarettes within the first two hours of his supposed journey.
Thanks a lot for the review! I really appreciate it!
- - - - - -
"Alright, lets just stop," Shaun said, completely exasperated by how the day was going.
Not a single pokemon had stayed or been worth capturing. All the Phanpy rolled down the hill after a single hit, the Geodude jumped off cliffs or were too weak to be considered useful, and an interesting little pokemon with a skull mask called Cubone that Shaun had even considered interesting ran away with tears. No baby pokemon on his team. And, to top it all off, much to Riolu's frustration, Shaun still only knew to use Force Palm. Despite using his pokedex on various pokemon, he had yet to use it on his own pokemon.
In all honesty the thought had truly never crossed Shaun's mind.
Intelligent in some areas Shaun may be, and a survivalist to be sure, but when it came to this sort of technology stuff, he really didn't know anything.
"Rio," Riolu breathed, panting horribly.
They had just fought their toughest opponent yet. It had been a Baltoy, a little ground and psychic type that had a body that allowed it to spin like a top. Riolu had been doing fine, pitting up against its physical attacks, but a well aimed Psybeam had forced Riolu to his knees. It was only with Riolu's quick thinking that it ignored its trainer's command and used a hasty Quick Attack, effectively sending it tumbling down the mountainside.
"Well at least I know you have another attack," Shaun muttered, taking a large gulp of water from his water bottle before handing it to his tired pokemon. "Here, take a rest at least. I don't need a half dead pokemon."
Riu," Riolu thanked, sitting down and drinking the rest of the water.
Shaun set his bag down and began to search for something to eat. He had some canned food and some other things that would be better off with a fire, but he had no wood. Also, after fiddling around with his pokedex, he realized he still didn't know how to access the pc, so getting that free pokemon food would have to wait. Grimacing, Shaun opened a can of ravioli. He didn't mind eating the pasta dish cold.
"Eat up," Shaun said. "Just let me spray you first." He took out one of the two potions he had. He didn't like the thought of using it so early, but he still had a long way to go with one pokemon, and Riolu had been hit badly by that psychic attack.
"Rii," Riolu breathed happily before taking the ravioli curiously. It sniffed at the food before taking a tentative bite. "Riolu!" Riolu barked happily, tail wagging.
"Good to see you're not being rebellious anymore," Shaun stated, leaning back against a rock. Immediately, Riolu stiffened. With a snooty sniff, Riolu turned its head away. Shaun snorted. "Yea, doubt that woulda lasted long anyway."
Riolu shrugged and eagerly had another bite of the human food that had been given to him. Never before had he been fed such food. Usually it was crunchy pokemon chow or berries. While eating, Riolu kept his head down but kept his eyes trained on his human. He had never seen a human like this one before.
Riolu had been surrounded by strict adult humans most of his life. They had either prodded or encouraged him into becoming a reliable starter pokemon for a future pokemon trainer, which was apparently a large honor. Well, not apparently. It truly was. Being given the honor of being the first, the one to make that first bond with a child or young adult about to set foot into the world. That was supposed to be a bond that lasted a lifetime.
But Riolu knew better now…
Still, the younger humans he had seen never looked like this one. The ones Riolu had seen were wide eyed and always smiling, always eager to touch something they weren't supposed to or were always cheerful. They were usually brightly colored or had little black or dark colors on them. This one was nothing but black with strange little silver extra things attached all about. The human had things on his ears and on his wrists, even around his waist. It was strange.
"Find something you like?" Riolu's trainer growled.
Riolu glared. Instead of looking away or causing a huff, he pointed at the studded bracelet on Shaun's wrist.
Shaun's hand immediately went to the bracelet. "Its jewelry," he grunted, dropping his empty ravioli can and stomping it until it was flat. "Though I doubt that's all you were looking at," Shaun said with a grin, scratching at his side burns.
"Che." Riolu rolled his eyes and copied the movement before handing the flattened can to Shaun.
Shaun just raised an eyebrow. "Just leave it. I ain't got room to be carrying trash."
Exasperated, "What, you're a tree hugger?"
Riolu stood his ground, but a loud growl erupted from his throat.
"Oh, for the love of…" Dropping his stuff, Shaun grabbed the two smashed cans and buried them. "There, now it won't bother anyone." His pokemon scowled at him. "Either we do this, or we burn it, and unless you have a fire attack, I'm not wasting my lighter fluid on something so small."
Riolu watched as his trainer walked away. "Rii." Riolu shook his head in exasperation and soon followed.
A person is smart, but a crowd is stupid.
That’s what people say, but people tend to forget all it takes is one single person to start ariot. What starts such distention is an object, person or action that goes against that of the crowds ‘what’s right’ code. In this case, it was a personthat was going against moral codes.
This person was crude, disrespectful and an insult to thepokemon trainer name.
There are just some people meant to be given honors, andothers that were meant to stay with the rest of the garbage, and when someonewho wasn’t meant to be crosses a line, it’s up to those of higher superiorityto put them back in their place.
There were five of them total, each wearing rich materialthat was quickly matted to their sweaty bodies and filled with their own bodystench. It mattered little to them. It was an easy replacement, and they wereused to having such luxuries easily replaced. Despite the harsh path they hadchosen, they would continue to be spoiled. It was something that they had beenborn into and walking out into their destinies wouldn’t have their privilege bedenied.
“I want one on each side,” a bold voice said, laced withauthority. He was the leader of this little group. For the moment. “Stay hidden, and don’t startle the pokemon, especially the Cranidos.”
The other four flash each other annoyed looks.
“We are aware of that,” one drawled. “There is no need totreat us like simpletons simply because we find your grudge childish andunnecessary.”
The first boy’s eyes flashed. “Watch your tone,” he growled.“And I know you find that boy repulsive.”
“No, you watch your tone,” another growled back. “We are nolonger bound by the rules of money.” The boy had a dark look. “We are on equalgrounds.”
“At least in the beginning,” another purred. “Until, thatis, we take our step into this oh so great wilderness.”
The first one hissed, face contorted with rage. “No,” he said coldly, “not all are equal in the beginning. Those that were destined tobe great are the first to make an impact. Which one of you fine gentlemenstarted the first act?”
The four of them stared at the fifth with acidic eyes.
“That’s what I thought. Now get into positions…”
“We need to know what else you can do,” Shaun said, the everpresent drawl still there.
Riolu, tired and huffing slightly, turned with a glare. It was clutching its hand to its chest where a bruise was showing through the blue fur right after a particularly hard hit from yet another Geodude. Despite its apparent skill with the fighting move and superb strength, over exposure to the same move for the young starter was proving to be somewhat damaging. Riolu was still low level, and would need much practice, but in the beginning, too much practice would prove to be unbeneficial and even harmful.
“Ri,” Riolu agreed sourly. Yea, that would be nice, if his stupid human could remember what moves he had or even had a cells worth of intelligence.
“Do that fast thing again,” Shaun said. “The one where you battled that Baltoy.”
Exasperated, Riolu took a deep breath and searched a bit. It saw yet another Phanpy and shrugged its shoulder’s a bit. Oh well, more experience.
With yet another deep breath, Riolu’s body tensed, and before Shaun knew it, his pokemon had become a blur of blue and black that shot forward like a bullet. Barely able to even see Riolu’s true shape, he watchedt he blurred form of his pokemon jump from rock to rock in almost no time andslam straight into a very surprised Phanpy.
“Phaaa!” the ground type yelled, body jerking away from theplant it had been eating and go sliding. Its eyes had closed and a few tears escaped, but it did nothing else. With a coughed huff, the Phanpy stayed down.
“One hit… Good.” All those battles had paid off. He almost wished one of those other trainers that had mocked him were here so he could beat their face into the ground. Almost.
“Rioo,” Riolu said proudly, walking over to Shaun and sitting down gingerly, clearly spent.
He would need to go back into his pokeball for a rest or just relax if his trainer wanted him in fit position. There was still so much to this route, and they only had a single potion. Riolu wondered if his trainer would force him to fight every pokemon they had encountered. They had done that so far, save for the pokemon too far on the other cliffs, and Riolu wondered ifhis trainer truly knew what he was doing. Too much battling, with no one to switch out with… they wouldn’t make it. His trainer was resolute to pulverize everything, determined in wanting Riolu to become stronger.
But damn he needed a rest.
“Shiiit,” Shaun breathed, hands in his hair and pulling those black locks. It was a habit, Riolu noticed, that his trainer did when angry or unsure. “Agility? No, I can’t remember. Screw those as*holes for forcing me to do this.”
Riolu licked his lips, unsure by the comment. His trainer fought with a ferocity that he rather liked, and with more practice he would become a good trainer, a great one even, but most of the time… well, all the time, it seemed like his trainer didn’t want to even be one. Why was he even out here then?
“Riol,” Riolu said, shaking his head softly, trying to encourage his trainer. Despite disliking his trainer somewhat, Riolu was at least encouraged to help out his trainer with the belief that when his trainer actually knew more than one attack, they would be even better.
“Yea, I know that’s not it,” Shaun growled angrily, tone snappish. Riolu growled back and turned his head upward with a sniff.
“Hey, rehab reject.”
Both Shaun and Riolu looked up, both with identical looks of annoyance that seemed even more pronounced when they stood side by side with their dark circled eyes. Shaun narrowed his eyes, trying to get a good look at the figure on the cliff directly across from him. There was a long drop between the two, but they were otherwise on equal ground.
“In case you're wondering, that move was Quick Attack.” The boygrinned smugly. “Any real trainer would know that.”
Who the hell did this kid think he was?
“Who are you?” Shaun called out, fists stuffed into his pockets and back straight with aggravation.
The boy’s face twisted into absolute fury, and Shaun honestly had no idea what this kid’s problem was. The only people that would bethis in his face would be those from his home town.
“I’m Andrew!” the boy shouted, completely enraged. “I was the one you were meant to battle!”
Shaun’s face turned lax and a bit uncaring. Turning to his pokemon, Shaun jerked a thumb at the guy. “Sure you don’t have any long ranged attacks?” Again Riolu growled at his trainer. “Geeze.” Raking a hand through his wild hair, Shaun turned back to the fuming trainer. He shifted his body slightly. The only reason this guy would be here would to start a fight, the bitter bastard.
“You have some nerve,” Andrew said coldly, glare unforgiving.
“Don’t blame me,” Shaun said with an uncaring look. “It was that other kid that interrupted us. Who was he, your cousin, right?”
“Don’t talk about Alexander in front of me!” the boysnarled, face red with rage. “You insulted me.”
“You started it,” Shaun said boredly, nose scrunching upwith impatience. Riolu looked between the two, not liking that he didn’t know what was going.
Andrew scoffed. “Such a childish and uneducated response,” he drawled. He grinned smugly at Shaun’s annoyed grunt and folded his arms.“And of that of one who doesn’t deserve to be a trainer.”
Shaun didn’t so much as twitch. His dark eyes gazed at theother half closed. “Yea, I remember you saying that before,” Shaun said, drawl matching the others. “But looky here,” he grinned vindictively, even going asfar as to ruffle the fur on Riolu’s head. Riolu gave him an annoyed look. “I am one.”
Again Andrew’s face contorted with rage. “Not for long,” he said lowly, voice dark.
“What, you gonna battle me?” Shaun couldn’t resist taunting the other. “Or,” and his voice grew exceptionally dark and he whipped out his switchblade, much to the other’s shock, “are you going to jump that fifteen feet of empty space and come at me.” He pointed the knife at Andrew’s form, face dead serious. “You don’t know nothing, rich boy,” he growled. “Just get the hell out of here.”
For a moment, Andrew stood stock still, too shocked byShaun’s actions before he finally shook himself of the distress. His eyes flashed and he whipped out a pokeball as fast as a cowboy would whip out a gun.With bright flash of brilliant white light, a small, four legged creature emerged at Andrew’s feet, and Shaun swore at the irony. Of course this lawabider would have a Growlithe.
“That is exactly the reason why people like you shouldn’thave the right to be a trainer, let alone walk the streets!” Andrew yelled.
Alarmed at his master’s anger, the Growlithe jumped at theready, teeth bared at Shaun and growls echoing all around. “Grow!” it snarled,believing Shaun to be the cause of distress.
Riolu, whom had sensed Growlithe’s muscles tensing, hadjumped into a battle position before Growlithe even let out his first growl.“Rii,” Riolu growled, red eyes glaring furiously.
Shaun felt his lip curl in disdain. “You can jump that, right?” he muttered lowly to his pokemon. “If it attacks with a fire attack you need to get close.”
Riolu scanned the area, taking in the actual distance and thehuge drop below. The two had come a long, and rather high, way up the somewhattreacherous mountain. Despite having somewhat weak level pokemon, it was thecliffs, ridges and sudden drops that were dangerous and deadly. The distance between these two paths wasn’t too bad, and even a simple trained Riolu could easily jump it with the help of its powerful legs, but Riolu had never been trained nor had the chance to see how high he could jump.
“Ri,” Riolu said quietly, nodding slightly, believing he could make it. It would be a different manner, however, if the fire pup were tol aunch an Ember attack during mid jump. The thought had obviously passed Shaun’s mind as well because he soon muttered a command to fall back. Too many street fights had taught him to know when to run.
“You really gonna battle like this?” Shaun said quietly, voice deep, knife at his side but still slightly raised. It was all for show, really, but Andrew didn’t need to know that. Just the sight of such a weaponwas enough to frighten anyone.
Andrew stared at Shaun, gaze layered with disgust. “No,” hesaid simply, “but if you don’t turn around right now, we’ll make sure you can’t continue onward.”
The knife in Shaun’s hand rose immediately. We? He looked all over, both tense andangry. “Be on guard!” he barked at his pokemon.
Riolu gave a surprised bark, not at all expecting such harshness being directed at himself, but he did as was told. “Rii,” Riolu muttered, trying with all his might to sense danger. To his distress, the only feeling he got was of hundreds of body movements. He was too young, too unskilled to be able to use his aura in such a way.
“That won’t work,” Andrew said, grinning rathersadistically.
“Back up,” Shaun hissed at his pokemon. “Get out of range!”H e had seen that look too many times. Whether on a terrified kid or a sadistic adult, the look was the same – they would take a life if they had to.
“It won’t help!” Andrew crowed loudly. With an eager grin he put two fingers to his lip and whistled loudly.
Shaun cursed loudly. Four others appeared on differentlevels on Andrew’s side of the mountain. Two were on the level above Andrew, the third a level up, and the fourth standing next to Andrew. All had their pokemon out, and each one could use a long distance attack.
But they were still new pokemon, Shaun thought savagely.There was no way they could reach Shaun and Riolu if they moved far enough. The only problem was there wasn’t much forward and Shaun and Riolu had alreadyplanned on climbing yet another level. If they were to try that now, and a long ranged attack – say an Ember from that damn Growlithe – the two could be falling to their deaths.
That is if Andrew had the balls to do it.
“So what now?” Shaun kept his tone level, gaze travelling toeach pokemon.
The trainer next to Andrew had a Chimchar, the two above them had a Pichu and Mudkip, and the last had an Eevee. That one couldn’t use along range attack, but he had to be there for a reason.
“Hard to believe he got the rarest pokemon in the mix,” the boy with the Eevee called down to the others with a hint of jealousy.
“Treasure in the junkyard,” another said with a laugh. He had a Pichu at his side, cheeks sparking in anticipation. “Poor thing,” he crooned mockingly.
“Poor thing indeed,” the other said, facing his fellow onthe second cliff. He was the one with a Mudkip. “Won’t be trained well at all.”
“Won’t even get the chance now,” the final boy, the onestanding next to Andrew with the Chimchar, said deeply. He looked Shaun up and down. “Trash,” he sneered.
Shaun sneered right back, trying to take in their faces andclothes. They were too far away for true detail, but he could at least see the color of their hair and skin. “Say that to my face,” he hissed.
“Unlike street trash that go head to head, we actually strategize,” Andrew intruded before the boy with the Chimchar could say anything.
“Tch, so you’re just gonna attack us until we fall of thecliff or something?” Shaun called mockingly. “Great plan, ya coward.”
“Another poor guess,” Andrew intoned, “and one with poor imagination.” The other four snickered at Shaun’s expense. “Did you happen to notice how late it’s getting?”
“Getting close to your bed time?” Shaun growled, eyes darting this way and that, desperately trying to find a way out of this. Damn, this was a mountain wasn’t it? Then why weren’t there any caves to run to!
“Hardly,” Andrew drawled, looking as if any insult thatShaun threw at him would be ignored easily, no matter how vulgar or insulting.“It’s very nearly sunset.”
Despite themselves, both Shaun and Riolu glanced up at thesun, taking in the slowly descending sun. In all honesty, Shaun had forgotten night would even come. He was still so out of it, despite getting into battles quite easily, but he had been forced into this. This wasn’t a dream, or even a passing thought, so he had never imagined what a first day of training would be like before he and his pokemon easily made camp and got ready for bed all lovey dovey or some bullsh*t.
“Your point?” Shaun snapped. Damn, this was just like acartoon. The villain always told his prey what they were about to do to them. Atleast in this case, Andrew spilling the beans might just save his life.
“I know what he’s thinking,” the boy with the Chimchar saidwith a grin. He turned to Andrew. “He believes that after you spill your plan like a complete moron, he’ll be able to see some sort of loophole.”
Andrew’s face was tinged with red. He knew the other boy hadjust insulted him. He knew better than to ever reveal every single thing, but hewas craving the chance to brag in front of this piece of trash.
“Then instead of telling, I’ll show him!” Andrew barked, giving the other a warning look. “Luke!” he called, straining his head up totake in the boy with the Pichu, “are they there yet?”
They who? Shaun instantly craned his own neck. He couldn’t see past the edge of the first cliff above him, nor could he see beyond the next levels. Whoever, or whatever, wasup there was now more of a threat. If he knew pokemon training was really this dangerous, he would have stashed a gun with him.
He turned back to the others. They were dead.
“They’re coming!” the boy with the Eevee called down.
None of the boys looked guilty with what they were about todo, but Shaun didn’t expect them to. They would have never rallied together if they had any stray thoughts. Nor would the others let that one join.
“Rii,” Riolu growled, body strained as it tried to sense what was up there. Whatever was up there was heavy. “Lio,” Riolu muttered uncertainly before glaring at the humans and pokemon across from them. If they were withinrange, he would throw them into the ravines like the rest of his opponents.“Riolu!” Riolu howled angrily, prepared for anything they threw at him.
“What a shame,” the boy with the Chimchar commented. “A Riolu is such a rare pokemon. Would you rather not come with me?” the boy tempted to Riolu. “I’ll train you properly and you won’t die with this sad excuse for a trainer.”
Riolu hissed, red eyes murderous.
“Tsk, what a loss,” the boy said with a sigh.
“They’re here!” the Eevee boy shouted gleefully, its pokemonchirping along to alert the others.
And Shaun felt it too. Huge stomps that came from heavyfootsteps. He tried to look everywhere, but there was nothing in sight, andwhen he finally looked up, he still couldn’t see but he knew the source wasthere.
“Everyone, now!” Andrew shouted, pointing at whatever was onthe cliff directly above Shaun.
And that was it. Embers, Water Gun and Thundershock soaredabove Shaun. He watched the elements fly by, noticing how much weaker the attacks were at such a far distance. The Thundershock couldn’t even make it halfway across, and to Shaun’s sadistic pleasure the Pichu seemed to have hurtitself during its own attack. The Water Gun had drizzled down to a small stream that still had powerful pressure, and the Embers had nearly sizzled out, butt hat was more than enough for whatever was up there, because a mighty roar thatseemed to shake the entire mountain was soon heard.
There were several loud calls, signifying there was more than one of whatever was up there, before the sound of smashing rocks alerted Shaun. He looked up, just in time to see some type of gray dino looking pokemon with a blue head smash right into one of the many large stones on the edge ofthe cliff. It was soon followed by others, and for the first time, as Shaunstared down at the falling boulders, he truly feared for his life.
Shaun stood stock still, knife held limply in his hand. Wasthis really the end? He didn’t believe he was the type to accomplish anythinggreat, but damn it he still had so much to do. He was going to get out of his sh*tty little town eventually on his own terms, get a life or something, and not get involved with inner workings of the slum world. But he couldn’t dothat. Get out of his town on his own terms or something because he was here, forced to be a half assed pokemontrainer that was ready to be squashed like the insignificant bug those rich bastards thought him to be.
Riolu stared gapping as well, but only for a second. His red eyes took in everything, and now instinct and survival was pumping through hisvery being. Screw orders, trainers and whatever else. He had to survive, and even though he hated this, because it always changed everything and he never truly had the chance to train with it properly, Riolu now had no choice. He took a deep breath… and let it out.
Shaun’s pity session honestly felt like forever, but in theface of death a second can feel like an eternity. Thank god it really was just one second. He snapped out of it as he noticed a bright blue glow by side, and although he had no idea how he turned his gaze away from those incoming rocks, he turned to his side.
Riolu was holding his palms close together, a bright blueball of energy in between them. There was an intense look of concentration laced in with the rage, and with a vicious howl of fury, Riolu launched the glowing ball towards the incoming boulders. Upon impact, those that were hit exploded into tiny pieces of debris and dust, but there was still so much more.
“Ke-keep going!” Shaun shouted, voice laced with fear. The urge to throw up overwhelmed him, and for a moment he thought he would do just that, but he held it in, because god damn it he would not be found dead lying in a puddle of his own vomit.
“Rii!” Riolu growled, body humming with energy.
Just mere moments before these damned people showed Rioluhad just wanted to sleep, body too exhausted to do anything. His body was stille xhausted, but now he had no choice but to do something. Or they would die. It was as simple as that. He could smell both his trainer’s and his own fear. Despite their faulty arrangement together, it wasn’t all bad, and for a moment Riolu could see them as a lot alike. Both bitter and dark looking. His red eyes unnerved people and Shaun’s heavy make up gave his eyes an even deadlier look. Both similar, and it brought a strange sense of peace to Riolu, but Riolu knew it was just childish longing, and it disgusted him. Still, he fought.
It wasn’t enough. The Cranidos, furious at the sudden and unbidden attack, continued to smash into rocks, knowing that a human and pokemon was down there. Whether or not they were the cause mattered little tothem. So long as someone paid they would be happy.
Shaun was honestly impressed with how much the little Riolu had managed to block. Dozens of rocks were tumbling down, looking more like a landslide than anything, but the small pokemon continued to fling that blueball thing or smash rocks with Force Palm just before it was about to hit Shaun, but it wasn’t enough. The ground was shaking from the force, and cracks were beginning to form. They weren’t on stable ground, the cliff was going to completely collapse, and Shaun could try and scramble for leverage, but a rockslide would only sweep him away.
“Ri!” Riolu yowled, finally getting hit by one.
Riolu had done spectacular so far, but honestly it was just a matter of time. Too many were pouring down, and now without Riolu to block them Shaun had to dive and roll much more. He scrambled to his pokemon, not sure what he could do to help but he was in the moment now. He was in the state of fear and death, and people tend to cling together when face with death. The same went for pokemon as well.
Another large boulder slammed down, just missing Shaun by inches. If he had been crawling any faster he would surely be dead. But then again, with the way the whole ground around Shaun was cracking and breaking up, he was sure to be dead. The landslide was ready to happen and he still wasn’t ready for it.
“Rioul!” Riolu cried out, rolling out of the way as a boulder almost smashed into him.
Riolu turned with scared eyes towards his trainer. The ground around Shaun was breaking quickly, and with loud crack that shook their very nerves, the ground around Shaun was gone completely, but not in a way they had expected. A gapping hole was now under Shaun, whom was now holding onto the cliff with dear life. There was pure darkness below him. Shaun had honestly thought the mountain was completely solid save the few small caves that he had heard about, but with how dark it was it appeared to be much deeper than that. Not that he was paying attention to something like that.
“Grab me!” Shaun yelled, clawing at the dirt as that two began to crumble. Rocks tumbled by, miraculously not hitting them.
Riolu lunged, paw grasping Shaun’s wrist just as the ground tumbled away. “Ri ri ri,” Riolu panted, holding tightly. He grunted with frustration, already beginning to pull his trainer up, but the sound of cracking filled his ears. Riolu was sure his heart stopped, as well as time itself, because he and Shaun were staring at each other, eyes wide and terrified, before the ground fell apart from under Riolu’s paws, and soon they were falling into the darkness.
"Well, that didn't go as expected," the boy with the Chimchar mused with an amused laugh. "What a shame that Riolu didn't have a stronger sense of survival."
"Better off dead with its trainer, Eric," Andrew hissed, turning to his partner in crime. "Displaced loyalty."
"Loyalty is so easily broken," the dubbed Eric said with a rich laugh as he stroked his fire pokemon with two fingers. "A Riolu with Aura Sphere? I would gladly pay good money for its initial trust to be broken and then ripe for the picking."
Andrew gave a bitter sneer. "It was already contaminated. If you want a Riolu so damn badly, just buy one."
Eric tsked in admonishment. "Why, I thought the whole point our guardians allowed us this little journey was to prove ourselves?" Eric eyed Andrew with a self satisfied smirk. "And I believe that meant capturing pokemon the real way."
"You best not be accusing me of something so… so improper!" Andrew snarled, glaring furiously.
"Of course not," Eric crooned, smoothing down his windswept blond hair. His tone was smug, and his gaze was a lot like Andrew's. He looked down on others, no matter how rich they were. "Well," Andrew said with a long drawn out sigh, "I suppose I must be going. Off on a pokemon journey, you know, not a murder spree."
Andrew's back went straight. "Trash like that couldn't even be considered human. This was no murder; it was taking out the garbage."
Eric waved it away. "Yes, yes," he said impatiently. "I readily agree with you, even if the rest of the world does not." His face turned deadly serious in an instant. "I was never here," he said coldly.
"Nor was I," Andrew said, just as frosty.
As one, their gaze lifted to the other three, and there was an understanding.
Shaun wasn't a deep sleeper, and even if he only had an hour or less of sleep, the instant he felt himself stirring he was instantly awake. Now was not the case. He could feel his body trying to stir itself up, yet his mind refused to function properly and his eyes wouldn't open. His body was sore, but thinking about it was like thinking about something that had happened yesterday. It was merely an afterthought.
There was an annoying tug on his ear, though, that was the only thing that could really break through Shaun's deep slumber.
"Screw off," Shaun groaned, voice raspy and broken sounding, raising a weak hand to his ear and swatting about. A small hand jerked away at the gesture, soon returning with even more vigor as Shaun's hand dropped weakly. "Get off!" he finally roared when the tiny hand gave a particularly hard tug.
His eyes snapped open and sat up far too fast. He regretted it instantly and began coughing and spitting up mud and dust and even a few tiny pebbles. His right eye vision was blurred somewhat by blood, and upon inspecting his forehead, Shaun wondered if he had suffered any serious damage because the gash on his head felt a little too deep for comfort. As soon as his hand came into contact with the gash on his head Shaun started dry heaving.
With dust everywhere, and his body the sorest in his life, the experience was hell.
"Saaa," a voice cooed curiously once Shaun's little fit ended.
Wearily, Shaun turned tired eyes to the source. Standing directly at his feet was one of the strangest things he had ever seen. Gremlin, a childish voice supplied for Shaun, but he immediately shook that way. It was a pokemon, an impish looking one at that, but a pokemon nonetheless. There were no such things as monsters – well, unless humans were considered monsters.
The pokemon before him was a dark purple creature that appeared to have no mouth. And no regular eyes for that matter. Instead there were large crystals that seemed to glow in the lack of light. It had strange ears, if you could call them that. More like two spikes on either side of its head and a large red ruby on its chest. The pokemon flexed three sharp claws and skittered closer to Shaun, and even though the strange creature had no pupils, Shaun knew it was staring at his ears.
Unconsciously, Shaun brought his hand up to his ears, feeling them carefully. All he had on were his earrings… His eyes narrowed at the little beast as he sat up further, body protesting with loud cracks. "You won't be getting anything of mine," Shaun hissed, sounding stronger than he really was.
To his surprise, a large grin appeared on the seemingly mouth less pokemon. It was an eerie thing, really, seeing a large row of razor sharp pointy teeth appearing on a once blank face. The thing cackled and scooted closer, fingers twitching greedily. "Saaa," it crooned again, opening its sharp toothed mouth to reveal a long tongue that snaked its way up and licked at its gem like eye. Shaun felt his eyebrows rise in shock. What… what the hell?
"Riolu!" Within a flash and burst of wind from how fast the little dog pokemon was running, Riolu stood face to face with this new being, startling the creature into jumping back a good few feet. "Riio," Riolu growled, dropping little roots to the ground and getting into a fighting position.
The pokemon hunched its shoulders, pointy toothed smile gone as it gaze at the two. It was quiet for the moment, but then the little creature let out an ear splitting screech. Riolu visibly startled at the strange creature ran forward, but with an almost deranged howl, Riolu slammed its paw right into the incoming pokemon… only to have it go right through its body.
"Rio!" Riolu cried out in shock, stumbling forward and right through its opponent.
"Sa! Sa!" the creature cackled, using that opportunity to scuttle over to Shaun on all fours like some possessed spider. Its face was suddenly in Shaun's, and before he knew it or could do anything about it, those sharp little claws snatched out and gave one hard yank it had pulled one of Shaun's studded earrings in his left ear.
Shaun let out a loud yelp, hand once again going to his ear and feeling a bit of blood. With a snarl, he lashed out at the strange creature, but with another insane cackle it jumped over both Shaun's and Riolu's attempted strike and ran off into the dark shadows of the cave.
"Damn it!" Shaun yowled, curling his legs into himself and feeling his ear. The ear had not been ripped, thank god, but the earring snapping off had definitely nicked it good. It could have been a lot worse, but Shaun was already in a horrible situation, and adding even more pain or irritation was not helping.
"Rii," Riolu said softly, coming to his trainer's side.
"Damn… just, gah, don't worry about it," Shaun snapped, holding his head, eyes shut in frustration. A paw tenderly touched his ear, causing Shaun's eyes to snap open and for him to jerk back. "I said don't worry about it!" he yelled.
Riolu jerked back, eyes wide before his lip curled. Fine.
Shaun sighed and raised his head slightly, getting a good look at his surroundings. The only source of light was from a large hole coming from the ceiling that had to be a little over two stories high. Damn, how was he not more hurt than he already was? He glanced at Riolu, grimacing slightly as the small pooch was picking up the strange roots it had gathered earlier and was now munching on them dejectedly.
Riolu was covered in bruises that hadn't been there before the battle or even all the rocks falling at them. Had Riolu cushioned his fall with his own body? Shaun noticed his backpack lying to the side, signifying that someone had taken it off for him, and the only one in the vicinity to take it off so nicely or not steal it was Riolu.
Shaun sighed deeply and brought his pack closer to him, wincing as he noticed his pocket knife still open, and imbedded into the ground less than a foot away. Damn that was close. He closed it quickly and pocketed it before fishing out his last potion and some food.
"Here," he said, tone gruff. His pokemon huffed and turned away. Shaun's eyes flashed in annoyance. "We don't have time for that!" he snapped, grabbing his pokemon by the arm. Ignoring the enrage yelp, Shaun began to spray the pokemon. "Yea, hit me after this so you're at least strong enough to protect me from any other pokemon," Shaun growled, eyeing the raised fist.
Riolu growled back but lowered his arm. The potion began to soothe his sores and he let out a sigh of relief. "Ri."
"Who would have thought this place was so hollow," Shaun murmured once he had finished spraying his pokemon. He eyed the surrounding cave, taking in all the rocks and lack of light. "Eat up," he said, tired. Slowly, and suspiciously, Riolu took the offered can of beans. "Eat half of it," Shaun ordered. "We don't know how long we'll be in here." He didn't wait to see if his pokemon had understood or not, and went back to scouring through his bag.
Nothing appeared broken, thankfully, and Shaun pulled out his lighter and pokedex. They would be his only source of light. He also pulled out one of the few bandanas he had brought. Carefully, he tied it over his forehead, hissing at the pressure but knowing that the gash needed to be protected.
"So I guess you have had a long ranged attack this whole time," Shaun said suddenly.
Riolu paused, mouth wide open in preparation of taking another bite. He put the can of beans down, bitter.
"Geeze, no need to act like it's the end of the world," Shaun said, exasperated, eyes rolling. "If you just wanna punch things that's fine by me."
Riolu stared. His trainer honestly had no idea what his power meant to be people. The thought made his body relax and breathe out a sigh of relief. "Ri," Riolu murmured. He held out a palm to his trainer and concentrated. A small hum of power echoed throughout the cave and a small ball of blue light hovered over Riolu's palm.
Shaun eyed the ball of energy with renewed interest. "Now that's pretty cool," he admitted. "But what the hell is it?"
Aura Sphere, came a robotic voice, causing Shaun to nearly jump out of his skin. The user looses a blast of aura power from deep within its body. This move is certain to hit. Type attack: Fighting.
Shaun sat there, simply staring at the pokedex and fuming. "You mean after all this time," he gritted out, "of fiddling around with this damn thing, all it needed was a vocal command!" he ended with a roar.
Riolu stared, bemused by his trainer's reaction. Humans are always overreacting about everything.
"What other attacks does Riolu have?" Shaun growled. "Give me a list."
Screen lighting up, his pokedex showed several attack names. His eyes travelled through the list greedily and took the half eaten can of cold beans from Riolu before all but inhaling the food.
"That thing… you went right through it," Shaun mused. "Damn, must mean there are ghost types here," Shaun told his pokemon. "But at least you have this move." He pointed at the screen. His pokemon once again gave him a scowl. Yea, like he could read. "Foresight," Shaun informed darkly. "Next time we see that whatever it was, you can now smash it."
Riolu tilted its head, a sly grin forming. Now this was more like it.
"Now let's get out of here," Shaun all but growled, gazing up at the whole that seemed so far away. "Next time we see those bastards they're dead."
Just as darkly, Riolu nodded. "Ri."
Lighter flicking on, the two limped forward, intent on surviving the inside of the mountain. Whether or not it was for their own survival or for revenge was anyone's guess.
Very nice. Solid writing aside from some minor errors. It's kind of like Dark Knight meets Pokemon. lol
I only read chapter one, and it reads pretty much to me like a gritty TV drama from the Pokémon world, and I enjoy it. And its formatted well and I haven't found anything technical to suggest.
I'll report back in when I get to reading all of this, but that's likely going to be a while from now honestly.
I started reading this a while back when you first posted it, and I have to say that I love your idea, and I think it's a great story!
Granted, the subject matter is a bit out there, but there is fair warning, and the way you introduce Pokémon-based drugs is really cool.
As you can see above, the last couple of posts have been sprinkled with soooo many fused words that reading them was painful.
Other than that, I'd just like to re-state that I love the subject matter, I love the way your handling it, and I've always thought that something like this had to be going on in the Pokémon World, and you make it sound like a natural thing, which is (whether you like it or not), exactly what it is in our world.
Anyways, props on plot, subject matter, and general idea, but pay attention to those spaces.
I meant to review this quite a while ago, but I kind of got distracted; I suppose that doesn't matter now, because I'm going to do it anyway, and there's more to say what with the chapters you've recently posted.
First of all, I like this. I find a great deal of Pokémon stories irritatingly saccharine or, if there is some problem, that it doesn't actually affect the protagonist as much as it ought to. In this, though, you've constructed a world that reflects a much bleaker version of reality, where the protagonist gets knocked about and loses a fair amount. That's good: it's refreshing and different, and much more interesting for it. I'm also a fan of Pokémon-based drugs in general, because there are so many opportunities there that are frequently passed over. Oddish, Gloom, Miltank, Bayleef - the number of Pokémon that produce what would be called drugs in the real world are surprisingly numerous.
I also don't think the subject matter is wrong for the canon you're writing in. I like that you haven't gone with the traditional type of Pokémon fanfiction; it's a far more adaptable world than people give it credit for, and your story fits into it just fine as far as I can see.
Having said all of this, I do have a few things to point out. I won't mention the spacing issue, because drunk ¬_¬ did that already; other minor things include this:
Next up, your little cabal of Evil Rich Kids. I have a few reservations about them; even allowing for the skewed morality of the world you've created, I'm not sure that kids would actually kill someone. It's really not easy to kill someone in cold blood, especially for someone who has a fairly comfortable background; even if they consider someone subhuman, I'm not sure they'd be able to actually put them on a boat to the undiscovered country from whose bourn no traveller returns. Perhaps you think differently. All I'm saying is, it comes across as a little odd to me, even in such a dark world.
Anyway, in the main it's a refreshingly different read, and for that I commend you. It's all too easy to fall into the trap of monotonous mediocrity, and you've avoided it. I look forwards to new chapters with great anticipation and a beautiful dinosaur.
The Thinking Man's Guide to Destroying the World * The Rocket Case * The Rocket Revival
Neither Here Nor There * The Beastman * Coriolanus Rowland's Guide to Pokémon Husbandry
Robin Goodfellow's Christmas Carol * Snow * Stranger Than Fiction
My Trip to the End of Time, by Pearl Gideon * A Smell of Petroleum Pervades Throughout
For information about A Grand Day Out, a bizarre short story in video game form, click here.
Cutlerine, was that a Thunderbirds reference?
Firstly, I've been looking to review this fic for quite some time. It always seemed to be floating around the front page at the same time mine did, and the title intrigued me so. Reading through this, I'm surprised it hasn't got more reviews and attention; it's very enjoyable, I'll say that for starters. Let me just add my voice to Cutlerine's and urge you to disregard the first reviewer that told you you'd picked the wrong subject matter or some rubbish to that end. That was a totally unvalidated criticism. For the record, I believe your choice of themes and subject in this fic was marvellous and refreshing. Many authors have taken it upon themselves to tackle the 'dark side' of Pokemon, but it rarely works, simply because it's presented very heavy-handedly and takes itself far too seriously. What I like about this fic in particular is that you've managed to keep it on the lighter side of darkness. While we certainly see the grotty, scungy underbelly of the Pokemon world, the tone and delivery of your writing makes sure that it is reined in before the brink, where other, more foolhardy authors have tumbled to their deaths in the bottomless abyss of Gothic Sue and Angstbomb. So, tl;dr: good job on not doing that.
Now, I'm a bit late to the game here, and there's a good bit of material to cover, so I'm afraid I'm not going to be able to go into very many specifics. I'll touch on surface features first, as those seem to be the least of your worries. Firstly, the aforementioned spacing issues. I'm not entirely sure how those came around, but not for a second do I imagine they're anything more than a recurring accident of some kind. Whether it's an issue with your word processor or whatever, I don't know, but it does make reading your chapters a bit difficult at times. People say to make sure you proofread your chapter before you upload it, but I believe in doing it as you're uploading it - just making sure it looks all right on the forum. I go through each chapter while it's in the Post Reply box, making sure it all makes sense, is free of errors, and has correct formatting where it's needed. It helps to prevent embarrassing mistakes, because sometimes a chapter which seems fine on Word or OpenOffice just goes pear-shaped in vBulletin. I dunno. Anyway, that was a bit difficult.'
Other than that, your fic seems solid in terms of grammar and spelling. I saw a few floaty commas and sentences that didn't quite sound right, but they were minor issues and didn't interfere with my enjoyment of the fic, so I'm not sure they'd be worth mentioning even if I could find them again to point out. What does get a bit annoying, however, is all the swearing. I have no problem with profanity in fics, but the big clumps of asterisks get annoying pretty soon, if only because I have to guess at what's being said from context. Basically, you are allowed to bypass the forum censors in the fanfiction section, but you have to place a warning at the top of the thread/post if you have uncensored expletives. So I'd suggest un-starring those to make it easier on the eyes.
Back to the actual content of the fic, however: I like your characters. For the most part, they are believable and realisting. Shaun is a bit of a stereotype, I admit, although I'm not quite sure where he fits. In my experience of goths/punks and the like - you know, people who pierce everything and wear lots of scary tattoos, jewellery etc - they tend to have no experience whatsoever with actually surviving on the streets and being 'tough'. Someone like Shaun, I thought, would get the living crap beaten out of him on a daily basis by the toughs he supposedly hangs out with. I mean, I'll be the first to admit I have no real knowledge on the subject, but by his description, Shaun kind of struck me as one of the sorts who dressed/acted like that for attention rather than being an actual 'hard man'. So there was a bit of dissonance there for me, but again, I don't make a point of hanging out with those kinds of people, so I don't really know. As a note, chain-smoking Shaun reminds me vaguely of Atticus from Mokepon. Just saying.
I like Alexander as a rival character. He seemed pretty legit in terms of his behaviour and speech. I like rich kid characters, as they can go bad - like Andrew and the others - or otherwise, like Alex seems to be looking to turn out. The look he shared with Shaun while Andrew was rampaging was a nice touch, I thought.
The idea of sending druggie teenagers out on a Pokemon journey as a form of rehabilitation is an interesting one, for sure. I'm not sure how realistic it seems. I've heard of similar rehab-type projects in the real world, but it seems like it'd be too much of a responsibility for someone like Shaun. He seems to be doing okay for the most part, but that's only because he seems to genuinely be an okay person, in a way. Some kids would be quite happy to take the Pokemon, sell it or otherwise dump it, and make a break, regardless of the tracker on them. They might think it'd give them a better chance than simply taking the jail time. Still, it's a novel concept and one I'd like to see played out to the end.
I'm not sure if there's too much more I can say. Shaun's incompetence with Pokemon is beginning to wear a little on my nerves, so it was nice to see him starting to work some things out with the Pokedex and all. I'm enjoying the narrative, and I'm looking forward to what comes next. Just work on ye spacing issue, and we should be fine.
(Also, I think the word Cutlerine was looking for - re: distention - would be 'dissension', as in 'dissent'. js)
AN: I am so honored to have gotten so many reviews. You guys have no idea how much they mean to me.
For the spacing I guess I don't notice them. It seems like a stupid excuse but I copy/paste my work to here and look over it. Sometimes I notice some spacing issues but not this many. I will be going through each individual chapter and editing them over the days. Thank you for telling me that. For all the rest, just seriously, thanks for all the help and feed back.
@Misheard Whisper - The answers to why law breakers and such going on journey's like this will be explained. It'll be a bit of a wait, but I'll try and get the chapters out sooner. I'm hoping it'll be an original idea for the whole rehab thing.
Anyway - here's the chapter!
That word had perhaps the most meaning to wild pokemon. Territory was what it was all about. You didn't have a place to call a safe hold then there was nothing for you. Whether or not it was a tiny hole in the ground or even the whole cave, a safe place meant everything. And if someone, an enemy or foreigner or anything, were to enter without permission, things would be thrown out of proportion.
Allies could turn on you, friends could become enemies and enemies could become even more of a threat. Newcomers, especially humans, threw off the balance. Humans were always battling wild pokemon, messing up strongholds and stealing friends, allies, family and even enemies.
Even the loss of an enemy could prove damaging.
That wasn't why this creature stalked forward, following the scent with deep grunting breaths and harsh footsteps. This creature followed because most of this cave had been claimed as part of its territory. Being one of the strongest pokemon in the area allowed it to do that. Others did that as well. Everywhere in fact pokemon did that. The stronger you were, the more you had. Simple really. There was another reason why this creature was stalking forward, though.
It wanted a fight.
"Aura Sphere," Shaun intoned with much boredom. He held his lighter as high as he could to give the pitch dark cave enough light. Riolu could see much better than Shaun in the dark, but that still did nothing for the human. There were too many rocks, holes and wild pokemon to be going about blindly.
"Riio," Riolu yawned, just as bored as Shaun. How many times had they been doing this? The tenth, thirtieth… hundredth? Who knew, there were just so many Zubat. "Luu." Body thrumming with power, a bright burst of blue light filled the cave and allowed Shaun to see the dozens of Zubat flying overhead. Even if they had no light to see, their horrible screeching would be enough to warn anybody that something was overhead.
The Aura Sphere flew into the air quickly, easily slamming into several at once because of the amount. There was just no way for those closest to the attack to dodge.
"How many of these damn things are there?" Shaun growled, slicing his knife upward as yet another Zubat came at him, intent on having a little snack on his blood. The knife cut right through the wing, and the poor bat careened out of control in a screaming frenzy. The blood from the damaged pokemon sent the rest into frenzy. Several came at it, sucking the poor pokemon dry.
He repeated the action a second later.
"Good god," Shaun breathed, body caked in sweat and grime. He tried shifting his backpack, hoping the heaviness switching positions would be easier to handle. He knew he was getting sick. Not quite at fever level yet but the symptoms showed that if he didn't get out soon, cleaned up good and had some medicine he would get worse. In a place like this it could mean death.
Shaun's head jerked at the sound, recognizing it instantly. His ear seemed to throb with pain in remembrance of the pokemon that ripped out an earring. His eyes narrowed dangerously and he seemed to be slashing the air as an afterthought when yet another Zubat lunged.
"Sa sa sa," the thing chuckled, body hunched over. It grinned widely and flashed Shaun's the earring. It gave off a glow under the fire light from Shaun's lighter, and that just made the small pokemon give a strange happy purr of delight. Flashing yet another grin, the thing crawled away on all fours, into a small little opening behind a child sized rocked. If Shaun were to follow, he would have to get on his stomach and crawl.
"Riolu!" he barked. "In there!" It was better that being in here.
Riolu got onto all fours instantly and carried Shaun's pack by dragging it with his tail. Shaun followed behind, grunting with pain and exasperation. His body was sore and a few Zubat were biting at his feet in a desperate attempt to draw blood. It was working.
"Finally!" Shaun rasped as Riolu grabbed hold of his hand and pulled him the rest of the way out. Several Zubat flew out, happily licking their wide mouths where Shaun's blood was dripping, and Shaun and Riolu quickly pushed a large rock over the entrance. "Get rid of them!" Shaun said quickly, holding his hand close. In his rush to get through the entrance, he had burned his hand on the lighter. It was nothing really, but with everything happening and his body hurting so badly, another little sting felt like a knife digging into his skin.
"Riolu!" Riolu howled, just as exasperated. The boredom the two had faced in the other room was like a survival act. They were tired and hungry, and facing so many of the same things in such a dangerous situation was enough to make anyone go a little loopy. With a savage growl, two Aura Sphere's shot into the air and smashed right into the Zubat. They were unconscious immediately, and those that hadn't been hit realized that they were now low on numbers and took off.
"Finally," Shaun breathed, just about to light his lighter when he realized that the entire room was practically lit. He stared, open mouthed and stunned. He had never seen anything like this before.
Layering nearly every spot of the cave were little blue crystals that lit up like night lights. The entire area was lit up with the blue light, giving the whole area a grungy city like feel. Shaun had been in plenty of alleys where the lights were multicolored. It usually happened uptown where all the clubs tended to be, but Shaun still got the same feeling from it – a mixture of danger and fun. No matter which part of the city, Shaun's hometown was dangerous if you couldn't handle yourself.
"Sa sa sa," came that annoying chuckle that Shaun was growing to hate.
"You," Shaun hissed, attention once again falling on the strange little pokemon. It still had his earring in its hand. "Give it," he commanded. It wasn't like he was going to put it back in or even keep it, but no one stole things from him and got away with it.
The creature just stared for a moment, crystal eyes unblinking – not that it looked like it had eyes lids. Slowly, its mouth literally split its head in half. A wide pit of razor sharp teeth and snake long tongue was what it had, and it was demonic. It dropped Shaun's earring into its mouth.
Both Shaun and Riolu deadpanned. "What the hell is this thing," Shaun muttered, pointing his pokedex at the thing. He honestly didn't think he could take anymore surprises.
Sableye, the Darkness Pokémon. Sableye normally live within caves and eat rocks. They use their sharp claws to dig through the earth.
Shaun waited for more information to come, and when it didn't he gave a furious growl. "More information," he spat.
Sableye lead quiet lives deep inside caverns. They are feared, however, because these Pokémon are thought to steal the spirits of people when their eyes burn with a sinister glow in the darkness.
"Obviously false since I'm staring right at it," Shaun groaned, exasperated. "More info."
Sableye has no natural weakness to a specific type unless moves like Odor Sleuth or Foresight are used on it, in which case fighting type moves are super effective.
"A pokemon with no weakness, huh?" Shaun mused, shifting tiredly. He gazed at the newly dubbed Sableye, surprised by how patient the little creature had been with him getting information that could possibly lead to its downfall. "Sounds useful." He let his backpack fall to the floor. He didn't need the extra weight at the moment. "Riolu."
Nothing else was needed to be said. With a growl, Riolu jumped in front of Sableye, palms out and ready. Likewise the ghost/dark type hybrid got into a defensive position. Around them, several type of pokemon peeked out of their hiding spots, watching with interest. There were a few Sandshrew, several Zubat, small pokemon called Aron and even a Graveller, but Shaun didn't care about them, or even know most of their names. He was focused on this.
"Foresight," he purred.
The instant Shaun opened his mouth Sableye let out an ear piercing shriek. Shaun had read stories about mythical creatures that could kill a person with their scream, and he was beginning to wonder if Sableye was related to it.
"Ri!" Riolu barked, shocked by the action. His eyes, which had been glowing, dimmed as the attack came to a stop. Sableye took that chance and scuttled forward, even faster than Riolu. With a vicious snarl and wide open grin, Sableye brought its hands together and slapped them right in front of Riolu, startling the pokemon. There was a moment of uncertainty, and when Riolu realized nothing had happened, its eyes lit up like a flashlight. Beams of light covered Sableye, much to its shock.
"Saaa," Sableye hissed apprehensively, feeling itself over for any damage, not quite sure what had happened as well.
"What was that?" Shaun demanded to his pokedex. It did seem to have all the answers now that he knew how to use it.
Fake Out – this attack is designed to make an opponent flinch, giving the user to attack twice. Fake Out, while still causing damage, will not make a pokemon flinch if it has the ability Inner Focus, an ability that Riolu have.
"Sucker," Shaun taunted at the unconcerned pokemon. "Now use Aura Sphere," he purred to his pokemon. "Make it suffer."
Undaunted by the bloodthirsty command, Riolu charged up the energy needed to create Aura Sphere. A look of intense concentration appeared, and despite getting a lot of practice with the Zubat, he was still inexperienced with the attack. It died out.
"Sa sa sa saaa!" Sableye cackled, pointing a sharp finger at Riolu.
Both Shaun and Riolu growled in unison. "Force Palm," he said, voice low and deadly. "Slam its face into the ground."
"Sby," Sableye grunted, its laughter disappearing instantly like some bipolar person. It raised its hands like a priest, almost as if it were praying. What was it playing at?
Shaun didn't have time to figure it out because Riolu came to a halt, hands flying to its head as it let out a howl of agony. Red eyes were wide with pain and frustration and its body glowed a sickly purple, just like Sableye's hands.
"Quick Attack!" Shaun barked out quickly, eyes just as wide and unsure. He wiped off some of the sweat that seemed to be falling from his face like a river. His body was soaked, and the intensity of this battle was heating him up to an uncomfortable high.
"Rii," Riolu grunted, eyes blinking quickly. It had to be a psychic attack or something. Why else wouldn't the hunched pokemon not need to move? "Rio!" yowled, breaking out of the mental hold and rushing forward, body becoming a blur.
"Sab!" Sableye gapped, astonished. Its crystals couldn't widen or close, but they glowed softly in what Shaun could grimly make out to be pain as Riolu shot forward, slamming its body into its purple form. "Lyy!" Sableye shrieked, claws darting forward and striking Riolu in the chest.
"Ri!" Staggering backwards, Riolu held its chest, a grim look on its face. It glared, paw fisting its fur tightly. It had hit exactly where Torchic had hit him its first time in battle. "Rioo." Body humming with power, Riolu's palms began to glow blue.
Shaun watched, as did the rest of the pokemon, how Riolu seemed to light up the entire cave by itself. All those little cracks and hiding spots that the glowing crystals couldn't get to were lit up, and the surrounding pokemon twittered uncomfortably, not liking that they were exposed.
"Saablle," Sableye twittered curiously, tilting its head to the side. Damn thing didn't even look terrified.
"Lu!" Riolu shrieked, completely shot. It was tired of this whole thing. Tired of wandering and fighting everything that came within sight of them and the whole almost dying thing was tearing at his mind. He just wanted to sleep. With another loud roar, the intense energy flew through the air, straight at Sableye, and it didn't even move.
The Aura Sphere hit, not that Riolu expected it to miss, and the Sableye went flying through the air with the sound of a small explosion in its wake. It tumbled to the ground, rolling repeatedly in what looked like painful somersaults before it finally stopped. There was a moment of silence where no one even dared to breathe.
And then it sat up, a large grin on its face.
"Tch." Shaun glared at the thing, taking in its many bruises and hunched shoulders. It was done for, yet it still gave them a show. Riolu didn't see it that way. It took it as a challenge. The damn thing had sat up, smile on its face and mocking him. With a furious snarl, Riolu made to run at it, palm out, but a harsh, "Stop, Riolu," had the fighting type skidding to a halt.
"Rio!" Riolu barked, pointing accusingly at Sableye.
"We can't hurt it too much," Shaun murmured to his pokemon, running a hand through his hair. It was oily and had lost all its gel thanks to mud and his sweat. He would kill Taylor for putting him up to this. "We need all the strength we can get."
The Sableye continued to sit there, breath heavy and uncaring as Shaun fumbled with a pokeball. Stupid belt was harder than he thought, but finally he held an empty pokeball in his hand. Thoughts of how exciting it was to capture his first pokemon and how accomplished he should be feeling weren't even stray thoughts to Shaun. His thoughts were ones of survival and finishing this and going wherever he wanted without a damn tracking device. He raised his hand, hand tightly gripping the pokeball.
And then all hell broke loose.
It was like a bomb was let off. Like some freak suicide bomber letting it loose in a bus or something. Something somewhat small like that but still enough to cause enough of a bang. Rocks went shooting everywhere, some of the smaller ones even digging into Shaun's skin, and dust engulfed the entire area.
The pokemon that had been watching the battle between Shaun and Sableye fled immediately, their shrieks and whimpers echoing loudly. The sound of their footsteps, yowling and grunts mixed in with the loud stomps coming into this particular part of the cave.
What the hell is going on? Shaun hissed, squeezing his eyes shut, only peaking a little after a moment. He swallowed, throat dry. He didn't want anymore surprises, especially since he had to survive the one where five random as*holes tried to kill him.
"Blyee," a voice muttered by his leg.
Shaun looked down, annoyed. Clutching his pant leg was the little Sableye. It held his pants tightly, crystal eyes staring straight ahead into the dust. Riolu wasted no time and stood in front of Shaun, eyes weary but palms up and at the ready. For the first time, Shaun truly respected how much a pokemon could take.
"What now?" Shaun grimaced, voice hushed as he tried to squint through the dust. Aside from the normal rocks, the glowing crystals had fallen everywhere as well, and despite himself Shaun's gaze travelled to the strange gems. There were more than just blue ones, but brown and some gray. Each one had a type of glowing quality, though the darker ones not so noticeable. His finger itched to grab some, mind wanting and greedy, but then survival kicked in once more as a loud moan filled his ears.
The dust cleared somewhat – at least enough for Shaun and his pokemon to see – and suddenly he wished the dust hadn't cleared, just so he didn't have to see the monster that had literally smashed through a wall.
"Ryhh," the thing grunted, long horn jutting about the air. Its body was massive – a stinkin' beast. Its skin… well, it had no skin. What made up skin and muscle was pure stone and it had three large blunted stone spikes on its back. Two white rock nails dug at the ground and white little beady eyes darted about. The creature huffed and grunted, scaring off the remaining pokemon before it fixed it hostile glare on Shaun.
He was staring into the eyes of a killer.
This thing was no murderer, but it would kill and it would survive. That was what its instinct told it to do – or that's what Shaun figured, because in the next moment it let off a roar that should have burst his ear drums and charged.
"Aur-Aura Sphere!" Shaun yelped, trying to hold back coughs as the remaining dust filled his lungs. He longed to squeeze his eyes shut and vomit up all the grime he was sure was in his throat but with this thing charging at him he had more important things to do – like running for his life.
Riolu jumped to attention, body visibly sagging and fur coated in sweat, and concentrated. Its red eyes had a glint of insanity to them, purely thinking about survival. His mind was drawing back to the simplest of animal instincts, and that's perhaps why the Aura Sphere shot out like a bullet. The blue sphere flew out quickly, and with a mighty roar before it even hit there was a slight explosion.
And once again that's when all hell broke loose.
Despite the spot on hit, the enrage stone monster continued to charge forward, head jerking back and forth like a rampaging Tauros. It eyes were narrowed with concentration, seemingly wanting nothing more than to smash whatever it saw. Its mouth widened, revealing a large set of mixed sharp and blunt white teeth that seemed to shine through the dark gray stone body with two rather large white fangs, and roared with fury, body at least looking a little sluggish from that attack.
Without a thought Shaun grabbed both Riolu and Sableye by the scruff of their necks and literally dove for his life. He didn't get very far, but he managed to jump several feet to the side and rolled, the two pokemon clutched tightly to his chest as they tumbled over hard rocks. It was more than enough because Shaun bolted to his feet as he felt a harsh wind blow past him. He swallowed heavily, watching the huge beast ram right past, a baleful roar following in its wake as it smashed right into another wall, creating yet another hole that revealed yet another area of the mountains inside.
"You!" Shaun hissed, not wasting any time for the beast to return. He could already hear it shifting, getting ready to charge again. "Sableye," he hissed, shaking the poor creature. "You live here and know your way around. Get us out of here!"
"Ri!" Riolu barked in agreement, palm raised threateningly. It would use force if necessary.
To Shaun's annoyance, the dual type pokemon cackled insanely. When Riolu lifted a fist, the hunched pokemon cackled even more but calmly lifted a hand in a peaceful gesture. "Saa."
Just as Sableye was turning, another guttural roar filled the area. It sent shivers down Shaun's spine and to his pokemon's disbelief he began to laugh. It was a guttural, deranged laugh. It was filled with self mockery and bitterness. Bitterness at himself and at the world. Especially the world. He had never loved others; that wouldn't change now even in the face of death.
"Ri." Riolu gave a harsh grunt and struggled out of Shaun's grip. It did so easily. The grip was lax from exhaustion, and it was a good thing too because the instance Riolu even got his grounding right another blast filled the area. Dust and pebbles were everywhere, and once more the brutal beast was in the room. The hole it created was an entrance way to some other area, which meant more pokemon. The area was soon filled with the screeches of Zubat.
"Ryyyh!" the stone beast howled, beady eyes glaring. It sniffed at the ground before snapping up a few brown crystals and swallowing loudly. With another much more eager roar, it charged, seemingly more invigorated and powerful than before.
"F*ck everything!" Shaun roared, still holding Sableye and literally scrambling up rocks to a higher level like an animal. "Riolu, move!" he yelled over his shoulder. His fingers clawed at rocks in his haste to get away. His height, however, only meant he was an easier target for the Zubat.
Sableye, getting out of Shaun's grip as well, hissed like a deranged demon. Its mouth glinted with sharp teeth and snapped at the Zubat. Shaun didn't know if the pokemon even had the attack Bite but it was working. Those that were caught flew haggardly away, their movement's jerky.
"Rioo!" came Riolu's howl from down below. It was filled with pain and anguish and Shaun couldn't keep himself from not looking.
He looked down, teeth clenched as his pokemon flew through the air. The large pokemon kept running, almost as if it couldn't stop itself. It again tore through the cave wall. Evidently the area he was in didn't have very thick walls, but that proved to be beneficial to Shaun. Each wall torn down gave that pokemon recoil damage, and he would take what he could get.
"Riolu, get up!" Shaun howled voice loud and echoing. He winced as more Zubat clouded around him but Sableye beat them away with its sharp claws.
"Luu," came a strangled out whine. Riolu strained to get up, body protesting.
Shaun bit his lip harshly, feeling blood leaking down his chin as he fumbled with his Riolu's pokeball. "Return!" he spat, aiming. A red beam shot out, missing by mere inches. "Return!" Shaun snarled, aiming better. By some miracle, just as the rock monster slammed through the cave yet again, Riolu turned into a beam of red energy and returned to its pokeball just as its massive foot slammed down exactly where Riolu's head had been. He let out a breath.
"Sablyy," Sableye moaned, body swaying like it was dancing. Which was just plain ridiculous but Shaun had already figured that the pokemon was insane. It grabbed his hand and hauled him up, high into one of the tiny openings that were fit only for pokemon. "Lyyy!" it screamed, sending the Zubat into a frenzy by the loud noise. Their ears, far too sensitive to noise, flittered about unsurely, and Sableye used that chance to push Shaun's body through the tiny tunnel until he felt his body shifting and start to slide.
"Not so fast!" Shaun snarled, body bloody, sweated and just plain beaten.
He scrambled forward, hands feeling the rocks slowly becoming slippery. He paused, fingers touching water, and before he knew it, Sableye gave a particularly harsh push and he was soon sliding down a makeshift rock slide. Water, which had been trickling out another opening and merging into the one he was in, created a sort of water slide. They slid down fast, Sableye cackling with insane delight.
They shot out in a stumbling mess into a type of underground watering hole. Shaun shot up, gasping and choking and chilled to the bone. The water was absolutely freezing. He tried to stand, only for his shaky legs to give out on him.
"Sh*t," he moaned, sitting there. His clothes clung to him tightly, furthering his discomfort. He blinked wildly, suddenly dry heaving. It lasted at least several minutes, but at least he didn't throw up his lunch. Some small part of him told him that he needed whatever energy he had left.
"Saa," Sableye said, a slight hiss to its tone. It was lifting up water with its claws before letting it drip down in loud splats.
Shaun looked away, unable to believe this insane pokemon. Taking a deep breath, he took his hands and cupped some water up to his mouth and drank greedily. It was as if that first sip was a sin because he was soon gulping down water like the greediest man in the world.
It ended with him throwing up most of the water.
"Sa sa sa," Sableye chuckled nastily, head twisting and turning like somebody possessed.
Another roar bellowed through the cave, and Shaun choked. His hands fisted tightly as he stood up, body drenched in the middle of the large underground pool. He looked like a fallen rebel; with soaked dark clothes, headband and running makeup. He was pitiful, standing there under the eerie glow of all the crystals with the sound of water trickling about.
Another roar sounded out, this one closer. With a loud bang that only made Shaun's shoulders tense up, the stone monster barreled its way into the new area Shaun was in. It was breathing in deeply, obviously following Shaun's scent, and came to a skidding halt. It jabbed its large horn about in a show of dominance. It glared at Shaun as soon as it made eye contact and began to stomp its way toward him.
Shaun grinned, a deranged smile now upon his face, body as hunched and creepy as Sableye's. "Come get me," he hissed harshly, finally snapping. "Come get me!" he roared, shaking his head violently and sending water droplets everywhere.
"Ryhh!" the beast bellowed, only too pleased to get at Shaun. And then its foot touched the water.
Shaun stared, openly confused as the foot drew back and the harsh glare turned into one of pain. The beast shrieked in anger. It glared bitterly and stomped roughly through the water, sending up small waves. It howled in pain, jerking and bucking as it tried to get to him, and Shaun could only stare dumbstruck. With another hateful roar, it twisted its body around and ran for dry land, body shaking in obvious pain.
"Ryyy!" it roared, stomping about in an obvious rage and causing the cave to shake.
Shaun gapped, unable to believe it. "Screw me," he said haggardly, grinning a twisted smile. "Get me out of here," he ordered to Sableye, voice waspish and tired.
Sableye tilted its head, gaze seemingly staring into his soul. A sharp toothed grin appeared on its once blank face before it tugged at Shaun's jeans. It led him, still in the water, to yet another small opening where he had to crawl through on all fours.
And behind him, Shaun could hear the guttural roar of the beast.