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by Mister Oshawott
Prologue: A Fateful Encounter.
"Remind me again, what is it you said your name was?" the teacher sat behind his mahogany desk, his fist nestled beneath his chin, his eyes dull and bored out of his mind.
"Clayton," the young trainer in front of him replied. "My name is Clayton."
"Ah yes, that's right." the teacher replied, casting his eyes over to the shoulder length brunette girl standing right beside Clayton. "And you, what is your name?"
"Katherine." she nodded, the Lillipup in her hands squirming with joy.
Their teacher sighed, passing forward two laminated pieces of plastic, each with Clayton and Katherine's respective pictures and names on each. His responsibilities as a teacher, for the moment, were finally over.
"Congratulations students, go out and see the world." the man said, waving the two beaming students off.
Katherine and Clayton walked out of the school, blinded instantly from the sun's rays reflecting off of the radio tower in the far off distance. Clayton paused for a moment, gazing at the building. Not only did it act as a radio tower for the Unovian air-transport system, but it was also the Mistralton Pokemon Gym.
"Let's battle." Katherine turned to face Clayton suddenly, causing the boy to jump abruptly.
"You know I can't." Clayton shrugged off her playful attitude.
"Your Mother might've given you a Pokemon as celebration for your graduation!" Katherine replied, cheery as ever.
"Money is tight, if she did get a Pokemon for me, I would've known. She wouldn't have been able to hide it from me, let alone pay for the food necessary to house it until it could legally be my own."
"Oh, right," she replied, her cheeks getting rosy. "I'm sorry, I didn't mean anything by it."
"I know you didn't. It's just been so difficult since Dad moved to Kanto."
"Silph Co. moved to Saffron City. That's huge." Katherine remarked, looking down at the mini dog in her arms. "Perhaps, when Candy and I go out on our adventure, we could catch you one and send it to you?"
"That won't be necessary. I've been saving up for some pokeballs of my own. I'll go out tomorrow and see what I can catch."
"It's dangerous to go alone." Katherine put a hand on his shoulder. "I'll go out with you tomorrow morning, Candy and I'll protect you."
"Thanks." Clayton replied sheepishly.
"Tomorrow at six o'clock?" she asked expectantly.
"Make it seven. I'll probably be partying all night tonight anyways." Clayton smirked.
"That's not a good start for an official Trainer." Katherine mused, shaking her head. "Seven it is. See you then."
Clayton watched her walk away, her brown hair bouncing gently off of her shoulder blades with each step she took. The two had always been friends since they were young, but she's always remarked how she wanted to be his rival as well. That the two of them would battle when they both became trainers. Shaking his head, Clayton stared off into the direction of the Gym one last time, before he began the walk home.
Clayton gently closed the door, the sound of his mother's Herdier barking muffled in the back of the house. She had another late night working at the gym it would seem. Clayton gently laid his backpack onto the couch and crept into the kitchen, his Mother's Purrloin mewing contently, gulping down some Miltank milk. Lightly placing his hand on it's head, Clayton gently scratched the cat behind it's massive ears, as it purred with delight.
Opening the refrigerator door, Clayton wrapped his massive hands around a jar of Bronzong's Special Elixer. One thing not many people knew was that Clayton had a gift. This stuff was expensive, but it kept him in check. Opening the lid, he took a brief gulp, as the liquid oozed down his throat. To those like him, it tasted like a chocolate milkshake, but for him, it was the consistency of one, but tasted as bland as cardboard. He replaced the jar onto the shelf once more, turning to face the living room.
Purrloin nodded, jumping off of the table and onto the floor, curling up by the couch. Clayton closed the door behind him, as the sight of his mother startled him. She looked like a mess, but her warm, welcoming smile filled his heart with ease.
"Clayton, congratulations!" she said softly, clearly she was suffering another one of her migraines.
"I have a gift to celebrate your milestone." she said, ducking back into her bedroom again, pulling a bag with a bow tie wrapped around it.
I'll be damned. She actually DID get me a Pokemon. Clayton thought to himself, accepting the bag with a smile.
However, when the bag opened, instead of an occupied Pokeball, he found a small, calculator sized machine. Lifting it, its front hatch slid open, and a scanner activated on the back.
"Hello, Trainer. I am DEX MK-5. The new generation of Pokedex software! Please insert your credentials into the interface."
Clayton stared, wide-eyed at the machine.
"Mom, this is a new Pokedex. Not even Katherine has this model!"
His mother smiled and nodded, grasping at her head, easing herself onto the couch.
"It's a gift from your Father." She smiled. "Silph Co. has yet to release this on the market. You got an executive's model. You'll have features that not many other trainers will have at their disposal."
"I'll send him a message on my PokeGear and be sure to thank him." Clayton beamed, entering his credentials into the machine.
"There is one other thing." she smiled. "Buster, c'mere boy!"
The sound of paws thudding across the linolium meant that the Herdier was inbound, and was ready to kiss the hat off of Clayton's face. The Herdier stopped short of the trainer, sitting pretty, a rather big package on it's collar. Clayton pat the dog on the head, opening the box. Inside, ten tiny poke-balls gleamed in the light.
"This is great!" Clayton said with a smirk, but then looked over to his mother in concern. "How could we afford this?"
"Technically, we couldn't."
"How did you get these?" Clayton asked, intent on getting an answer
"I bought them." she said with a shrug. "I just worked over-time for the past four weeks to gain the necessary funds."
"Mom, you really shouldn't work this har-"
"-I'll be fine Clayton!" she snapped, before calming herself, tears welling in her eyes. "So, tomorrow is the big day, huh?"
"Yeah. Don't worry, I'll be sure to call frequently.” he smiled, staring down at his new equipment. “Thanks again."
“There’s a little more upstairs in your room. I figured at the age of eighteen you wouldn’t need me to help you with it. Go on ahead sweet heart, I’m going to go lay down for a while.”
Clayton stood, gently hugging his mother once more, before creeping up the stairs to his bedroom. Opening the door, his posters of the Unova Elite Four members littered the wall, along with his personal collection of Training books. On his bed was a backpack, much more newer than the ratty one on his back. Replacing all of the objects in his old bag to his new one, he was surprised to see a new uniform inside. Pulling it out, it was a leather jacket, a white t-shirt, some finger-less leather gloves, and two pairs of khakis. Clayton knew that four weeks of over-time could afford a lot more than just ten Pokeballs.
Donning the clothes, Clayton looked in the mirror. Despite the gruff expression on his face, he was a gentle and kind young man. He had a strong jaw, kind blue eyes, and short brown hair. He also was a bit of a giant, standing at a massive six feet, eight inches tall. His build was one of a strong young man, abnormally so due to his body size. Fitting a trainer's belt around his waist, he took no time hitching the unoccupied poke-balls to his hips, placing the remaining four into his bag for safe keeping.
Laying down on the bed, Clayton closed his eyes, as thunder exploded in the sky, and the rain pattered down on the roof above him.
It wasn't long before Clayton was up again. It was the fourth time that night, and the sun had fully gone down over the horizon at this point, so he knew it was late. Pausing, Clayton looked around, before laying down on the bed once more.
"THERE'S NO USE RUNNING, RODENT!"
Clayton jolted himself awake again. Shaking his head, he stood, clenching his fists, something wasn’t right, and those voices were right outside. Charging down the stairs, Clayton was sure to bring his bag with him, in case he needed it. Rain continued to pour down, Clayton ripped the door open, charging out into the storm.
Reaching the forest’s edge, his foot met a wet patch of mud, and he slid a good foot before falling onto his back.
"Help me, please!"
"SHUT UP! NOBODY'S GONNA SAVE YOU!"
Clayton stood once again, the wind becoming much more fierce, the thunder roaring overhead. Heading into the woods, Clayton stood in shock, screams of pain echoing from the thicket in front of him. Cutting through it, he saw a pair of wild Herdier's snapping their jaws at a young Pikachu. It looked up at him pleadingly, as Clayton lifted a stone high above his head.
"Get out of here!" Clayton barked, as the Herdier's neck fur stood up on edge, the two dogs turning, teeth bared.
"Looks like we've got a meddlesome human on our case," One of them snapped its jaws at him. "He'll make a fine DESSERT!"
Clayton stiffened, as the other dog moved to flank him. Everything was still for a moment, minus the endless downpour.
One of the Herdiers pounced at the trainer, as the Human swept his foot in a kick, launching the dog back into a tree. Throwing the stone at the other one, he pegged the second Herdier in the snout, which only managed to anger it. The two dogs pounced at once, as a bolt of electricity shot towards them, knocking the two out cold. Clayton turned to the Pikachu, who could barely stand on its hind paws. Running over to the fragile rodent, Clayton fell to his knees, cradling its head with his hands.
"You'll be fine. I'll get you to a Pokemon Center. We'll make you well again." Before Clayton could lift the mouse, it jolted him, causing him to lose his grip.
Clayton could tell by the notch in it's tail that this was a female Pikachu, and she was clearly protecting something.
"Pichu." Was all that she could say, before her body went limp in his hands.
Clayton lowered the Pikachu to the ground, gently brushing its hair. Looking over into the bush, he could see precisely what the Herdiers were after, and why she didn't want to leave. Hidden in a strategically made nest was a yellow and brown egg. Pulling the spare scarf off of his neck, Clayton wrapped the egg in the cloth, and placed it in the safety of his bag. Lifting the Pikachu's body, Clayton decided to give her a proper burial, so as not to be eaten by the Herdiers that had attacked her.
Placing his bag in the warmth of his home, gentle on the couch, he grabbed his mother's spade and the box that once held his Running Shoes. Placing her body gently in the box, Clayton dug her a hole right next to the forest's edge, placing the box in the hole ceremoniously. Covering the box with dirt, the thunder boomed over head once more, and he shivered. Grabbing a few twigs, he fashioned a cross and planted it in the dirt.
"I'm sorry I didn't come sooner, I could've saved both the egg and you," Clayton said. "I'll be sure to protect your child with everything I have. You have my word on that."
He stood there for a moment, hoping his words sunk in to the deceased's soul, before he walked back into his house. Pulling the egg from his bag, he wrapped it in a towel, placing it under the same lamp that his Mother had used to hatch Buster when he was just a Lillipup.
Clayton sat there in wonder for a moment, until his eyes started to droop. Working his way over to the bed, he closed his eyes, and thought for a moment of what had just transpired, before his exhaustion finally overtook him.
The Captain's Crew:
Chapter 1: Rough beginnings
Clayton's eyes cracked awake, the sunlight leaking in from his bedside window. Sighing, he knew today was the beginning of his adventure. Sitting up, he smacked his lips, the dried saliva causing him to shudder in disgust. Walking over to the borough, he observed the egg, paying no mind to it, he turned to his own bathroom. Walking inside, he shambled over some misplaced things, walking over to the mirror.
Turning on the cold water, he dipped his hands into the facet, splashing himself in the face with the cool, refreshing water. His lungs gasped for air, as the sleepiness was ripped from him. Shaking his head, he grabbed for the towel on the hanger beside him. Grabbing a comb, he quickly ran the plastic through his short black hair, before grabbing his toothbrush. Scrubbing away at his teeth, he peeked his head back into his bedroom. The Noctowl alarm clock flashed six twenty. He still had plenty of time.
Headed back into his bathroom, he spat out the toothpaste, jumping into the shower for a quick bathing. Once he was finished, he dressed himself in his spare set of clothes his mother had bought him, placing the dirty ones into his ratty bag. He decided that the extra storage space would be helpful. Confused, Clayton scratched his head. The room around him was messier than it had been before he went to bed. Turning to the egg, Clayton walked over to observe it further. On the side facing him, it looked perfectly intact, but on the other side, there was a hole from where the inhabitant had escaped.
Clayton remembered the Pikachu and his promise to it from the night before. Panicked, he searched around the room, before the evidence became clear, it was under his bed. Searching under his bed, he found nothing to suggest that the mouse offspring was under there. Standing up, Clayton turned to face the window, which had thankfully been closed the night before. Before he could think, a yellow blur jumped towards him, the small mouse tackling him to the bed. He didn't dare retaliate, fearing he would hurt the creature, as it climbed up his chest, swinging it's tiny paws into his face.
Taking the hat off of his head, Clayton quickly covered the pokemon with it, making sure it couldn't escape. Standing, the hat in his hands shook eradically, as the wild mouse tried to escape.
"Clay?! You home?!" A voice echoed from downstairs.
Clayton's eyes shifted over to the clock, it was now six fifty eight! Looking at the hat in his hand Clayton knew the creature would escape before he could grab a pokeball to capture it.
"Upstairs!" Clayton barked down, as the sound of footsteps climbing up the stairs startled the rodent in his hat even more.
The door opened, and Katherine entered, a look of bewilderment in her face as she looked at the young boy struggling with his hat.
"It's a long story." Clayton shrugged, the hat again thrashing about.
Katherine observed the room momentarily, her eyes settling on the egg shell on the borough. Wide eyed, Katherine turned to Clayton.
"She DID get you a Pokemon!" Katherine hugged Clayton. "I told you she would!"
"Please close the doors," Clayton replied. "Then I'll tell you the story."
Katherine nodded, confused, as she closed the bathroom and bedroom doors. Clayton lifted the hat to his face, speaking in the calmest voice he could.
"I'm going to let you out little guy, but I don't want any trouble out of you, fair?"
The hat thrashed once more, as Clayton gently lowered it onto the bed, the yellow mouse scurried off to the borough, where it's egg shell remained. Sniffing it, Katherine squealed with excitement at the cute little creature.
"Oh my god, she got you a PICHU?!"
"Not exactly," Clayton said, placing a hand on her shoulder, lowering her onto the edge of the bed. "See, it happened last night."
Clayton explained the entirety of the last night's occurrences to Katherine, as his old friend held a hand to her mouth in shock, her eyes welling up with tears. Looking over to the Pichu, which continued to sniff the egg shell in hopes of finding it's mother, she looked back to Clayton.
"That's a sad story Clay," She handed him a piece of candy. "I was going to give this to Candy, but I think the Pichu needs it more than she does."
Clayton took the sweet, gently working his way over to the Pichu, the cute little baby mouse tensed, folding it's ears downwards. Clayton held out the sweet, as the creature kept up it's defenses.
"Don't worry little guy, I won't hurt you."
"I want mother." Katherine squeaked as the Pichu 'spoke' to him.
Clayton paused, he knew Katherine didn't hear what it had said, persisting, he reached out further, as the mouse sniffed it.
"Well, it does smell good." Pichu shrugged, gently hobbling on all fours over to Clayton’s hand.
Shifting it's eyes up to him uneasily, then back down at the candy, the Pichu snatched the candy, jumped off of the borough, ran beneath Clayton's legs, and under the bed.
"I need some time to get ready. Why don't you go outside and let Candy explore a bit." Katherine nodded, carefully opening the door, and then closing it to prevent the Pichu's escape.
Kneeling down, Clayton heard the Pichu munching on the Rare Candy. The mouse finished it's meal, looking over to him. Standing on all fours, the mouse hopped along towards him, as he reached out his hand. Sniffing his fingers, the Pichu retreated back, folding his ears.
"I've got somewhere I've got to be. If you want, you can come with me." Clayton spoke softly, standing. "For now, I'll let you get used to me before I put you in a Pokeball."
Picking up his hat and his backpacks, Clayton prepped himself for the day, opening the door a bit. Before he could step a foot out, the blur of the Pichu jumped onto his shoulder. It was still timid, and he knew it still didn't trust him, but accompaniment was a good start.
"There you are Slow-Bro! What's the matter, Shellder got your tail?" Katherine chuckled.
"No, I just needed to convince Pichu to come with me. I love Mittens to death, but a Purrloin and a Pichu wouldn't make good friends."
"Well good. Let's go!" Katherine smiled, walking in the direction of the woods.
"Why are we going in there?" Clayton asked.
"We promised each other we were going to have a Pokemon battle, and I won't be content until we do. I wouldn't dare risk your chances of making nice with the Pichu, so we're going to catch you another Pokemon!"
Clayton merely shook his head, as he followed his good friend into the forest. The Pichu on his shoulder sniffed the air around it, trying to get a better idea of it's location. Observing it's tail, Clayton was convinced this Pichu was a Male. Pausing for a second, he reached into his bag and pulled out his Pokedex, the machine scanned the Pichu, listing the data on the mouse.
"What are you going to name him?" Katherine asked, peeking over her shoulders.
"I was thinking something electric related, but I dunno, what do you think?" Clayton asked the Pichu, as it twisted it's head, confused.
"Well, you are unusually fast. You are a bit timid, and you are an electric type." Clayton pondered for a moment, before the perfect name popped into his mind. "Bolt."
"Bolt?" the Pichu asked, tilting his head. "I kinda like it."
"That's a great name for him!" Katherine cheered.
"Oh bother! Where did I put that?!"
The two trainers paused for a moment, turning towards the sound of the voice. In the clearing ahead, a woman dressed in a lab coat was on the mossy earth, apparently searching for something.
"Is something the matter?" Clayton asked, as the woman jumped in surprise.
"Yes, I've been out studying Pokemon, and one of my newest addition's pokeball has gone missing! The Pokemon contained inside is exceedingly rare! Can you help me find it?" She paused for a moment, standing. "Now where are my manners. I'm asking you for your help, and here we are, perfect strangers. I'm Professor Juniper, I have a pokemon lab in Nuvema Town."
"I'm Clayton, and this is Katherine."
"Pleasure to meet you." Katherine replied.
"You two seem like a pair of new trainers, and low, you sir have an extremely rare pokemon, especially for this region." She approached the Pichu on his shoulder, holding out a berry. "Pichu, let alone the entire Pikachu evolutionary line, is almost completely nonexistent to Unova. In fact, you may be the first person to ever meet one in the wild on this entire continent!"
Clayton looked over to Bolt, who nibbled away at the berry. No wonder the Herdiers from the night before were so eager to attack Bolt's mother. The thought of them wanting to taste new flesh sickened him, as Juniper turned on her heels, looking along the forest floor.
"I'll tell you two what. If you can find me that Pokeball," She sighed momentarily. "I will give both of you an exceedingly rare pokemon each."
Clayton and Katherine looked at each other momentarily, and then back to Juniper.
"We'll look for it ma'am." Clayton replied. "But we don't expect payment."
"Such modest kids, if only the rest of the world were more like you two." Juniper smiled. "Still, it wouldn't be right to send you two out there, especially with a newborn Pichu as your only line of defense."
Clayton knew there was no talking this woman out of it, and instead nodded. The three split up, searching the ground for the pokeball.
The Captain's Crew:
Chapter 2: Liberation of Pokemon
Clayton cautiously walked along the forest floor, Professor Juniper and Katherine not too far off from him. His eyes scanned the forest floor, as Bolt kept his eyes out. The thicket from the forest floor made it difficult to spot the Pokeball, or anything for that matter. Lowering himself to the musty earth, he used his hand to push aside the grass, the various bug Pokemon that lived among them scattered.
Bolt jumped off of Clayton's shoulder, much to the new trainer's surprise. Reaching his hand out, the Pichu turned towards him, pointing off in the direction of the close by clearing. Clayton stood, as Bolt sprinted on all fours towards the clearing. Clayton chased after the young mouse, hoping that he wasn't running away for good. The only thing on Clayton's mind was the Pikachu from the night before, and the promise he had made.
"Bolt!" Clayton yelled after him. "Where are you going?!"
"Just follow me!" Bolt squeaked back. "I've got a good feeling about this!"
Katherine and the Professor's ears perked at the sound of the two, and they charged after Clayton. Sprinting into the clearing, Clayton saw a pair of Herdier approaching a man in a medieval styled set of clothing. The man was lanky, his hair short and aqua blue. Grinning maliciously, the man reached down to grab something out of the Herdier's mouth.
Bolt climbed up Clayton's shoulder, tugged on his hair, and pointed towards the man. In his hand, he retrieved a Pokeball from the Herdier's mouth. Standing, the man pat the Herdier on the head, throwing the corpse of a dead Patrat at the duo. Clayton felt sick to his stomach, as Katherine writhed with anger. Behind the man was a woman with the same colored hair, the same attire, and gifted the other Herdier as well.
"HEY!" Professor Juniper yelled, running over to them.
The group cringed, turning towards the two Trainers and the Professor.
"You best mind your own business lady." The man said, observing his new prize.
"This IS my business. You've killed a Patrat, and you STOLE my Pokemon!"
" 'Stealing' is a powerful accusation." The woman replied. "Our goal is not to steal Pokemon, but to rather Liberate them from the nefarious ways of the Trainers they have come to 'trust'."
"This Pokemon will be a warrior in our glorious war to end the abuse of Pokemon!" The man yelled.
Clayton stared at the pair of Herdiers. One of them had a busted nose, similar to the one the night before. That's when it clicked in his head. Those Herdier from the night before weren't wild, they were tamed Pokemon, trained to kill innocent Pokemon for game.
"Looks like it's our friend from the other night." One of them growled at him. "How's your friend, the rat, doing?"
"You knew another mouse like me?" Bolt asked.
"Well, it appears our Herdiers have taken a liking to you." The woman smirked. "Sick 'em."
Without even thinking, Clayton tackled the man to the ground, throwing a few decisive punches into the man's nose. The sickening sound of cartiledge breaking rang out into the crowd, as Clayton snatched the Pokeball from his grasp. Standing, Katherine kicked one of the Herdier duo away from Clayton, as Bolt shocked the other one.
The other Herdier snickered, snapping it's jaws at Bolt. Clayton thrust the Pokeball at the Herdier's face, slamming it aside. Out of the ball, a small green snake popped out. He wouldn't bother using his Pokedex to gather information on the pokemon, as Juniper pulled out a ball out of her bag, throwing it towards the Herdier that Katherine and Candy were dealing with.
Out of Juniper's ball, a tiny red pig appeared, as it snorted in disgust at the dogs. Handing off another ball to Katherine, Clayton's friend chucked the ball, a tiny blue otter popping out.
"Fine, if it's a battle you want." The man replied, plucking another ball off of his belt. "It's one you'll get."
"If you win, you get to keep your Pokemon." The woman smirked cockily, pulling another ball out of her purse. "If you lose, we'll take them all. Saving the mouse for a snack."
Clayton stood tall, as the Pokemon moved to their respective owners. Bolt remained on Clayton's shoulder, his abilities too weak to be of any use in the coming battle. Candy and the otter worked their way to Katherine, who stood between Clayton and Juniper, and Juniper's pig stood in front of her.
The two thugs released their third and fourth pokemon, a pair of Herdiers and a pair of Golbats.
"Go Pokemon!" The man said. "Show these fools' Pokemon the mistake of following Trainer's orders!"
The man's Golbat and Herdier charged forward, as Clayton's snake rushed forward like an arrow, slamming it's head into a pressure point in the Dog's neck. Falling backwards, the bat grabbed the snake with it's feet, lifting it high into the air.
"C'mon Snivy!" Juniper yelled. "Use Growth!"
The snake obliged, swallowing air to increase it's body mass. The Golbat's flight became unstable, as the Snivy slithered it's way up the bat's torso, smashing it's head into the Golbat's face. The two feel from the heavens, Snivy used the bat to take the brunt of the fall. The bat's eyes were closed, and he knew it was out cold. Snivy blinked, limping it's way off of the bat's still form. The Herdier barked, the Snivy's constitution falling by the intimidation.
Clayton observed Candy and the otter's synchronized attacks take down the other Golbat. Katherine shivered with excitement for the two, as Juniper masterfully ordered her pig to thrust it's body into the Herdier, putting down the first of two skillfully. The combined group of Pokemon turned towards the Herdier, which held it's ground.
"There is one thing you jerks should learn about Trainers." Katherine smirked, Candy jumped with excitement. "Our bonds with our Pokemon is stronger than any so called 'Liberation' of Pokemon."
The man accepted his loss, returning his bat and the Herdier to their Pokeballs. The woman huffed in disgust, returning her two unconscious Pokemon.
"PLASSSMAAAAA!" The pair yelled, throwing down a smoke bomb.
Clayton charged into the smoke, watching them run through the woods in retreat. Turning back, Juniper returned the pig to her Pokeball. Beaming with pride, Clayton handed her the ball belonging to Snivy back, as she pushed his hand back.
"Snivy has chosen you." She smiled. "To give him back now would cause him irreparable damage to his psyche. Keep him+"
Turning to Katherine, Professor Juniper handed her the otter's ball.
"Oshawott seems happy to be with you, I have no doubt in my mind you will take good care of it. Oshawott's are notoriously energetic, so be wary of that."
"Thank you ma'am."
"Thank you for your help. I can't help but feel something is coming, and it makes me sleep well at night knowing there are strong trainers like you, and the young fellows from Nuvema town are out there, showing people and Pokemon the importance of trust between Pokemon and their Trainers."
With that, the Professor turned on her heels, and walked out of the forest. Clayton turned to Katherine, who looked back. The two trainers looked down at their Pokemon and smiled, as the Pokemon smiled back.
"Let's go visit Nurse Joy." Katherine said. "These guys need a break."
The Captain's Crew:
Chapter 3: The First Battle.
After walking a couple of miles to the city, Katherine and Clayton had finally arrived at the Pokemon Center. The building stood tallest out of the many buildings in the immediate vicinity, it's only opposition was the Pokemon Gym. The town of Mistralton's trademark wind started to pick up, Bolt sat on Clayton's shoulder, shivering. Clayton nodded to Katherine, as the two trainers walked into the building.
Instantly the smell of lavender filled the air, the soothing music of the Poke-Center billowed into their ears. Two men stood to their right, behind a blue kiosk. Clayton recognized it as the Poke-mart. Katherine smiled and waved to the men, as the trainers passed them to the counter in the center of the room. Behind the counter was a tall, fairly attractive young woman in a nurses outfit. Her hair was red like a rose, and her face was friendly and inviting.
"Hello and welcome to the Pokemon center." She said, observing the two. "I am Nurse Joy. Do your pokemon need any healing?"
"Yes ma'am." Clayton replied, handing over Snivy's pokeball.
Bolt jumped down onto the counter, as Nurse Joy smiled.
"In order for your Pichu to get the necessary treatments, he'll need to be in his pokeball."
Clayton paused for a moment, his eyes shifting to Bolt, then to Katherine, and back to Nurse Joy.
"He doesn't have one." Katherine stated. "He hatched just this morning."
Nurse Joy pondered it for a moment, before handing the tiny mouse a berry.
"It appears the Pichu has some respect for you. Perhaps you should try to convince him to get into one. Just because he has a pokeball doesn't necessarily mean he has to stay in it. It's for his protection, if you ever fought a trainer that was foolhardy enough to throw a pokeball at him, he wouldn't be protected from the capture."
Clayton nodded, taking Snivy's ball back momentarily, while Katherine allowed Candy and her Oshawott to be healed. Turning to Bolt, Clayton held out a pokeball. The baby mouse sniffed it momentarily, as his ears folded down.
"I don't like that." Bolt growled, slapping it with his paw.
"Do you like traveling with me?" Clayton whispered to the mouse.
"It's been fun so far." Bolt replied, staring at the pokeball with hatred.
Clayton nodded, handing the Pichu his unfinished berry. Once the mouse was finished, Clayton tried again. Again Bolt slapped it with his paw.
"If you like traveling with me, this will make it so you can travel with me forever. If you don't, then other trainers will take you from me, and we won't be able to travel anymore."
Bolt didn't like the sound of that, folding his ears, he sat on the counter, tears welling up in his eyes.
"This won't hurt him, will it?" Clayton asked Nurse Joy.
"Of course not dearie!"
Clayton held the ball down to Bolt once more, who looked up to him, unsure.
"It won't hurt, and I promise you won't have to stay inside of it."
Bolt sighed, standing on all fours, he hopped over to the ball. Sniffing it one last time, he touched the button in the center, as a red aura formed over him.
"Just will yourself to be inside of it, and don't try to fight it. You'll be fine." Clayton's voice was soothing and reassuring.
The red light that surrounded Bolt pulled him into the open ball, as it fell onto the counter. It rocked once, twice, three times, before finally clicking. Beaming with pride, Clayton held the ball up, handing Snivy and Bolt's pokeballs to the Nurse. Placing them into designated slots on the machine, Clayton watched Katherine walk over to the Poke-Mart kiosk. She smiled and waved, before turning to the men running the counter. Clayton observed the two pokeballs on the machine, a golden aura covered them, as the Pokemon inside were healed.
After a moment, Nurse Joy returned the balls to him, as he clipped Snivy's to his belt, he let Bolt out, before replacing the Pichu's ball onto his belt. As soon as his tiny paws made contact with the counter, the tiny mouse pounced his new Trainer, climbing up to the top of his hat, stifling a small giggle from Nurse Joy. Pulling out his wallet, Nurse Joy's cheeks turned a deep red, as she shook her head.
"It's charity work we do here sir," Nurse Joy replied with a smile. "You don't owe us anything."
"But how can you afford this technology?" Clayton asked, curious.
"Donations mostly, although we also have boarding rooms for Trainers that cant sleep outside. That and a portion of the revenue made at the Poke-Mart is given to us." Nurse Joy smiled. "Is there anything else I can help you with?"
"Actually yes. I plan on taking on the Pokemon League, where should I start?"
"First, you'll need a traveling license. This is different from your Trainer Card."
The nurse handed him a card, quickly snapping a picture to place for his identification.
"This license must be signed after each Gym Leader you face. By signing it, they are allowing you to access more and more places around Unova that may be currently unavailable to rookie trainers like you. Take Castelia City for example, you are allowed free passage through the city to get to Nacrene City, and eventually Striaton City past that." She handed him a town map. "You should make sure you've finished up here in Mistralton before you go in that direction. You won't be able to come back until you have earned at least five of the necessary eight badges."
Clayton filled out the license information, before handing it to the Nurse. She quickly printed it onto a laminated piece of plastic, and handed him a fancy metal case.
"This is your Badge Case. Most trainers tape their license into the top of this case, alongside their Trainer Card."
"Thank you for everything, Nurse Joy." Clayton smiled, accepting the case, before turning and leaving.
Walking past Katherine, she placed her newly bought goodies into her satchel and followed him from behind. Stepping outside, Clayton paused, turning to Katherine.
"Did you get one of these travel licenses?" Clayton asked, opening his case to show her.
"I had mine filled out with my Dad yesterday, after I got my Trainer Card." She smiled, pulling Candy's pokeball off her belt. "By the way, I believe you have a promise to fulfill?"
Clayton pulled Snivy's ball off of his belt, grinning as it grew in his hand.
"I do, and you're going down!" Clayton smirked cockily, as the two found a quiet area.
The two threw their respective pokeballs, as the energetic snake and dog appeared.
"Because Bolt is still getting used to you, we'll only have these two fight!" Katherine yelled across the field, as Clayton nodded.
Clayton pulled out his pokedex to get some more information on the snake.
"Snivy, the Grass Snake Pokemon. This pokemon is very intelligent and calm. Exposure to sunlight improves it's mobility and abilities in combat. Known moves, Tackle, Tail Whip, Vine Whip, Growth." Dex announced to Clayton.
"Candy, use Tackle!"
On command, the tiny dog scampered over towards Snivy, who prepped itself for the fight.
"Snivy, dodge and use Growth!"
Snivy narrowly avoided the puppy's attack, before sucking in air, causing the snake to appear larger than it actually was.
The Lillipup obliged, uttering a guttural growl so deep the snake felt it's fighting spirit diminish.
"Don't let it bother you Snivy!" Clayton roared. "Growth!"
The Snivy regained it's composure, sucking in another mouthful of breath, it's body appearing even bigger than before. The Lillipup charged forward for another tackle, as Snivy took the blow head on. Rolling along the grassy knoll, the Snivy lifted itself, slightly hurt by the attack. It winced momentarily, but stood, ready to fight.
"Snivy, use Vine Whip!"
Snivy nodded, as it's tail elongated in a veil of green light. Jumping in air, the creature whipped it's massive vine-like tail across the dog's back. Candy whined in pain, falling to the ground. Wincing, Candy nearly stood, as Katherine stared in disbelief.
"How is that possible?! Candy is a normal type, her only weakness should be fighting type moves!"
"You forget that Snivy used Growth two times!" Clayton barked back. "Growth boosts Snivy's Special Attack, which includes moves like Vine Whip!"
"Candy, tackle!" Katherine barked, determined.
The Lillipup's attack made contact yet again, as the snake fell on it's back, exposing it's belly.
"BITE!" She roared.
"Tail whip!" Clayton countered.
The dog's fangs bared, as it lurched towards Snivy's exposed belly. Snivy's eyes squinted with determination, as it's tail shot up and slapped the Lillipup across the face. Blood shot out of Candy's nose as her head lurched backwards.
"Tackle!" Clayton barked.
Snivy stood, smashing it's head into the Lillipup's, knocking it to the ground. The Lillipup struggled to stand, limping as she and the Snivy circled each other. Blood oozed out of the wound on the Lillipup's face and back, as the creature finally fell to the ground, unconscious. Snivy stood, victorious, as it turned back to it's trainer, grinning with it's eyes closed, jumping up and down excitedly.
Clayton returned the snake, as Katherine produced a yellow prism out of her bag, placing it to the dog's forehead. Candy's eyes fluttered awake, as Clayton ran over to check on his friend's pet. Feebily, it tried to stand, as Katherine produced a spray bottle out of her bag, applying the soothing spray to Candy's wounds. The wounds mended themselves, as Candy jumped at Clayton playfully, licking his face.
"You feeling better?" Clayton asked, as the dog yipped.
"Yes, your Snivy fought well!" Candy replied. "Master is very happy for you."
Clayton stood, as Candy turned to Katherine, awaiting to be returned to her pokeball. Katherine shook her head, smiling.
"You're going to walk with me from now on. If you get tired, I can return you, but for now, we should head to Nimbasa."
"What's in Nimbasa City?" Clayton asked, as Katherine looked up at him.
"The Pokemon Musical of course!" She replied with a smirk. "I'm going to see if Candy and I can get in a show."
"But what about the Pokemon League?" Clayton asked.
"Don't worry, I'll still participate, I just can't accompany you ALL of the time, that would ruin the surprise of seeing your Pokemon grow!"
"Then I guess we part ways at Nimbasa then?" Clayton replied.
"Right, but it won't be permanent. I'll still train my Pokemon, so I won't get behind. You can quote me on that."
Clayton nodded, as the two trainers set out for Chargestone cave, and beyond that; Driftveil City.
The Captain's Crew:
The two trainers trudged along the beaten path quietly, not a person spoke. Glancing around, Clayton closed his eyes and breathed in deeply, he had always dreamed of this day. To go out into the world, have Pokemon by his side, and work his way to the Pokemon League.
Just him, his friends, and his Pokemon, out on an adventure. Sure, his strive to become stronger was important, but he was in it more to see the world. Something that wouldn't have easily been done if he settled into a more non-adventurous career, like his mother.
Exhaling calmly, Bolt seemed to be enjoying himself too. Clayton knew that the Pichu still had some trust issues, but that was one of challenges of being a trainer. To grow to trust one another, to become stronger, to have fun. That's what it meant. Glancing over to Katherine she smiled.
"So, what are you going to name your Snivy? If at all?"
"Well, I really haven't gotten a chance to ask yet."
"Ask?" Katherine paused, as Clayton froze. He forgot she didn't know about his ability, he had to make something up and fast!
"Er- yeah! Don't you remember when I named Bolt? I figured it's only fair that I get their opinions on what their name should be. A standard shake or nod of the head is indication enough for me!"
"Huh, I never thought of that. Maybe Candy doesn't like her name?" the trainer peered down at the tiny dog following alongside her. "Well, do you like your name?"
"Of course!" Candy yipped, of course Clayton knew she didn't hear it.
"Sounds like a yes to me." Clayton paused, Katherine halting her brisk pace.
Throwing the Snivy's Pokeball onto the floor, the tiny grass snake rubbed it's eyes carefully, glancing up at it's trainer with confusion.
"Oye, what's it take to get a little shut-eye around 'ere?" the snake asked, it's 's's were raspy and drawn out.
"I feel you need a name, are you alright with that?"
Snivy gasped for a moment, taken aback, putting one step backwards.
"I guess not." Katherine snickered.
"Foolish lassie. I am just surprised he hasn't asked me until just NOW!" Snivy stood proud, shaking his head at Katherine.
"I guess not, he's sending mixed signals here." Katherine nodded.
"You seem awful proud, and you kind of hold yourself majestically, regal, almost."
"You should've seen my father, well, if that dastardly Professor hadn't have captured me the other day, you might have. He was the leader of our Serperior colony. A king of sorts, and as a Prince I was to take up his position." Snivy replied.
"Reginald, perhaps even Reggy for short."
"Absolutely out of the question!" Snivy exclaimed, shocked. "That name is revolting!"
"Gerard? Samuel?" Clayton was at a loss for words, he wasn't as creative as other trainers.
"Samuel," Snivy pondered it for a second, shaking his head. "I like the name, alas, it's not the one for me."
"Fine," Clayton sighed. "How about Sebastian?"
"Ah yes, Sebastian the Snivy. I enjoy that name. You may refer to me as Sebastian from now on." Sebastian nodded his head in acknowledgement.
Katherine squirmed with excitement as she watched the Snivy finally agree. Clayton felt bad, she was so out of the loop. She would absolutely love the sound of his Scottish accent. It almost reminded him of Candy's slight Irish brogue. Alas, she wouldn't ever understand, and he wasn't even sure when he would tell her of his ability anyways, lest she constantly refer to him as her Pokemon to Human translator.
Last time he told someone, it was with Skyla and her recently evolved Swoobat, when it fell ill as a Woobat, he had talked to it, had a meaningful conversation, and realized she was evolving into Swoobat. Ever since then, Skyla had been requesting he translated her Pokemon's every thoughts, as if he had no rights to his privacy. Instead, he decided to keep it on the down low from his friends.
Shaking the thought from his mind, he looked back down at Sebastian.
"Want to walk through Chargestone Cave with us? Or would you like to stay in your Pokeball for now?"
"I'd like to save my strength, in case something dire hits us. Y'know what I'm sayin' boyo? I'm still a wee bit tuckered out from our last encounter, and even then, that Lillipup almost had me beat."
"It was a close match, Sebastian." Candy barked happily.
"Alright then, I'll put you back in when we get to the cave. For now though, I think you can ride on my shoulder for a bit." Clayton shrugged. "Grass Pokemon like you should enjoy the sun, and I don't know how long we'll be in that cave for."
Sebastian pondered it for a second, and before Clayton could react, the Snivy found his way onto his Trainer's shoulder, opposite of Bolt.
"Jimminy Kricketone! This is a long drop to our deaths, don't ya think mousey?"
"Meh, I'm getting used to it." Bolt shrugged, busying himself with the remnants of the Oran Berry that Nurse Jenny had given him.
Biting off a small amount, the tiny mouse offered it to the Snivy, who glanced at it.
"Y'wantsome?" Bolt asked with a full mouth.
"Hmm, I am a wee bit starved. Come to think of it, no matter how gross that was."
Accepting the offer, he took the tiny morsel of Oran Berry and downed it with one mighty gulp. Lazing gently, Sebastian actually appeared to be ready to sleep. Clayton shook his head and rolled his eyes as he and Katherine continued on their way to the cave entrance.
Bolts ears perked up, as he pointed towards it's origins, Clayton having heard it himself. It sounded like someone was having a battle in the middle of the path. Clayton nodded his head in that direction, as Katherine and him charged to locate the battle. Sebastian was rocked awake, barely hanging onto the loose leather of Clayton's vest.
"I just couldn't beat you. Here, take my money, jerk." A youngster grimaced, as he returned a small purple rat. "But I'll have you know, my Rattata is in the top-"
"Yeah, yeah, I could give a Rattata's as-" A kid, no younger than Clayton replied, juggling a Pokeball in his hand.
"HEY!" Clayton barked. "This is right in front of the Chargestone Cave! You could hurt innocent bystanders with one of your attacks! It's a public road!"
The youngster ran off in the direction Clayton and Katherine had come to get to the Pokemon Center. The boy snickered, stopping his juggling. He wore a pure white suit, like something you would see at a club, or on an agent, not on a teenager, let alone a Pokemon trainer. His hair was about the brown of a Bouffalant's coat, deeper and darker than a chocolate bar, kept clean and even, as if he paid a lot of money to have it done. His eyes were as red as a Rapidash's flames, rivaling Clayton's deep blue ones.
Something was off about this trainer, something Clayton didn't like. It wasn't the fact he was rich or anything, which was clearly present from his super fat right pocket, which in no doubt held his wallet, and the fact he was wearing his Sunday best on a dirt path. Someone was clearly born with a silver spoon in his mouth, but that wasn't the reason Clayton disliked him. It was the way he carried the Pokeball. It showed complete disrespect to the Pokemon contained within it, and if the Pokemon inside grew up to be as sinister and off-putting as his trainer, he felt saddened and frustrated.
"That's a rather rude introduction." The boy replied, causing Clayton's blood to boil. "Manfred Berkshaw is the name, Pokemon training is my sport."
"SPORT?!" Clayton exploded. "Do you not realize what Pokemon training is?!"
"My my, have we got a temper." Manfred snickered. "Who might you be, all-knowing trainer?"
"I'm Clayton Connolly of Mistralton City."
"Heh, your name sounds like some sort of Italian desert that I'd feed my dog."
"You seem to be all talk, but how's bout you me you can walk. Or do you have some butler to do it for you?" Clayton snarled. "Perhaps you couldn't even get dressed in the morning without him there holding your hand."
Katherine glared at him momentarily, slapping him on the shoulder.
"That was rude!" She replied.
"What?! I'm sick of these damn rich folk trying to show they are better than us, and if he wants to give me crap, he'd best be ready to get some back."
"I'll take that as a challenge." Manfred scoffed.
"Wasn't an invitation to play cricket."
"Heatmor, show this bumbling oaf your true power." Manfred growled, throwing his Pokeball onto the ground before him.
From the red beam, a large, bi-pedal figure appeared. To Clayton, the Heatmor resembled that of a Aardvark, commonly known as an Anteater. Pulling out his new generation of Pokedex, he allowed Dex to gather information on the Pokemon.
"Heatmor, the Anteater Pokemon. Heatmor draws in air through their tails, transforms it into fire, and uses it like a tongue. They melt Durant and eat them as prey. Known moves: Incinerate, Lick, Bind, Fire Spin."
"A fire type." Clayton whispered to himself, staring at the anteater, as it sucked air through it's tail and plumed fire from it's snout in the shape of a tongue.
"Let's raise the stakes here, if you win, I will leave this cave and give you all of my cash. If Heatmor wins, you must revoke your Training license and give me your Pokemon. My money is much more precious then them." Manfred smirked cockily.
Clayton froze, he couldn't give away Sebastian and Bolt now. But at the same time, he had to reap what he had sown. He peered over to Bolt and Sebastian, who nodded, they were ready, even though he wasn't fully convinced.
"You're on." Clayton replied, warranting another smack from Katherine.
"You're insane," She hissed. "You just got your license, Bolt, and Sebastian. You would give them up so quickly."
"No, but Sebastian is confident he can take it on." Clayton replied under his breath. "Better to take the chance then prevent him from trying."
Sebastian nodded, scurrying down the length of his trainer and into the battlefield in front of him.
"I'm going to cremate you and suck up the dust, maggot." the Heatmor taunted the Snivy.
"Only in yer dreams, ye big, stupid pile of Miltank dung!" Sebastian grinned. "Besides, you eat dirt? Not surprising, in the least. Perhaps try a salad, yeah? Maybe help thin you down a bit."
"Now hold yer Ponytas' there boys!" A voice echoed from the cave's entrance. "Ya'll can't just have a battle with such high stakes without a referee present. That's down right despicable."
Stepping out into the light, a strong, average high man stood, a cowboy's hat fixated on his head, a small sample of wheat stuck out of his teeth, with which he removed from his mouth, tossing it onto the ground.
"And who the hell are you supposed to be?"
"Yer referee. Name's Clay, I'm the leader of the Driftveil City gym. An' you might want to learn a liddle respect pardner. I could flatten you and your Heatmor right here and now."
"Funny." Katherine grinned, gesturing to Clayton. "His name is Clayton."
"Well sit me down, give me some moonshine and call me Slowpoke! It sure is a small world we live in, Clayton ain't a name I've heard all that recently. Where're you from Clayton?"
"Mistralton City. I find it funny, I was thinking this kid needed to learn some respect too."
"Right then." Clayton nodded. "Then it's settled. Snivy versus Heatmor, winner takes all. First Pokemon to knock out the others is named victor. Trainers, begin yer battle!"
"Heatmor, use Bind!" With it's trainer's command, the Heatmor charged at Sebastian.
Sebastian looked back at Clayton, who nodded with a smirk.
"Dodge and use Growth!" Sebastian ducked his head down, weaving through the trees, the anteater on his trail.
Sucking is some air, Snivy rounded the tree, dashing past Clayton.
"Heatmor, don't let it get the better of you, use Incinerate!"
The Heatmor planted it's feet, drawing in a big breath, as the holes in it's paws glowed red, the fire within it's body reaching high temperatures. Aiming ahead of Sebastian, the beast launched a small missile of fire, as it exploded in the dirt in front of the Snivy, tripping him up.
"Good, now follow up with Lick!" Again, the Heatmor drew in breath, as a giant trail of fire whipped out of the anteater's mouth, flicking the air, the fire in it's eyes growing much more determined.
"Sebastian, get out of there, and use Growth!"
"I would hope that you'd be smart enough to know that Growth only works on Special Attacks, so if you are trying to stack it up and make his Tackle more powerful, you're pathetic hillbilly mind is far too gone to even be redeemed."
"Keep yer mouth shut money-bags. Let the trainer continue his strategy." Clay shook his head, glancing at Clayton. "Yer gonna want to attack soon though."
"Trust me, I got this." Clayton smirked, cracking his knuckles, while Sebastian drew in more breath, making his body appear much larger than before.
"Heatmor, Incinerate, and then BIND HIM!" Manfred growled.
The Heatmor abliged, firing another projectile of flame at the Snivy. Sebastian, however, stopped in his tracks, darting through the trees, leaving the anteater to chase him again.
"C'mon then? Where's your game?!" Sebastian taunted the behemoth stomping behind him.
"Oh how I'm going to enjoy making you eat those words, runt."
"Is that your best attempt at an insult? Being tiny gives me speed, something you forget about!"
"Sebastian, one more Growth, follow it with a Vine Whip!" Clayton shouted after them.
Sebastian nodded, sucking in one last mouthful of air, before lowering his head nearly to the floor, his perfect flatness giving him major aerodynamics. Dashing out of the tree-line towards the trainers, the snake made a short detour, grasping onto the bark of the tree to his left with his tiny hands. Using his momentum to his advantage, his tail glowed green, as he smashed the unaware anteater in the side of it's head, launching it off of it's feet and into the next tree over.
"Y'see boyo! It's not the size that matters, it's what ye do with it!"
"SHUT UP!" Heatmor growled, fire jetting out of his snout at the snake.
Before he could react, however, Sebastian took the brunt of the attack, getting launched backwards into the side of the cave wall. The massive Pokemon stomped towards him, as his trainer watched with nervousness from the side-lines. Sebastian had taken quite the beating already. How much more could he endure? Closing his eyes, he decided he had to find out for himself.
Ignoring the searing pain running along him, he couldn't give up, not now, not ever. With that in mind, he stood, as his eyes snapped open. He was going to win this thing, even if it killed him.
"That's impossible!" Manfred stammered.
"Nothing is impossible when you actually treat your Pokemon with respect, and they WANT to fight for you. Not because you paid the big bucks to receive it."
"FINISH THAT SNAKE OFF!" Manfred roared. "USE FIRE SPIN!"
Sebastian had to move, but found that he couldn't, as a ring of fire developed beneath his feet. No matter where he moved, the ring followed him. Running towards the forest once more, the anteater finally blasted a plume of fire to ignite the Fire Spin. The tornado of flames flowed into the sky, it's cyclone of death causing him immense amounts of uncomfortable heat.
He began to glow green for a moment, and realized that his specie's special ability was about to kick in, as his eyes glowed white. Dashing around in circles around the circumference of the Fire Spin attack, Sebastian's speed caused his own little cyclone to appear within the center, as the leaves in the trees above began to flutter down, becoming one with Sebastian's own wind tunnel.
"Woah." Clayton replied. "That's Leaf Tornado."
The sight was spectacular, a fiery funnel encompassed around his Snivy, but leaves made almost like a protective shield around him at the same time. His Snivy roared with the last of his strength, whipping his tail towards the Heatmor.
The tornado moved across the battlefield, sweeping up the Heatmor within it, leaving Snivy slightly singed from the exit. The mixture of leaves and fire damaged the creature, until it finally fell to the ground, completely out cold.
Clay stepped forward, tilting his hat down slightly over his eyes, as he tossed it into the air. Cheering in his own way, the Gym leader regained his composure from his stereotypical cowboy dance long enough to step forward.
"Heatmor is hereby unable t' battle. Sebastian the Snivy and Clayton Connoly are the victors! Ye'd best pay up there young'un. Else I'll have yer license stripped from ye, see how YOU'd like it."
"So this... thing. Was the best money could buy?!" Manfred muttered, glaring over at Heatmor, before pulling out it's Pokeball. "I'm going to make this thing so tough, it'll burn your wretched snake into oblivion!"
"Yeah, you do that cupcake." Clayton growled, thrusting out his hand. "Now if you don't mind, I got some bills to pay."
Grousing, Manfred reached down into his pocket and pulled out his fat wallet. A deal was a deal indeed. Pulling out all of the cash in his wallet, he tossed it at Clayton's feet.
"A bet's a bet." Manfred snorted.
"Boy, he didn't even teach you how to properly hand people things." Clayton shook his head with a tisk. "Guess I'll have to teach you."
Smashing his foot into the back of Manfred's knees, Clayton thrust his rival's head into the dirt.
"You threaten me or any of my Pokemon, or even any of your own with death again, and you'll be spending more than a year in the ER, capiche?" Clayton held stiff, as Manfred growled a yes. "Now act like the rich gentleman you are and hand me the money. Then beat it, punk."
With that, Clayton lifted him off by the scruff of his shirt and booted him away.
"THIS ISN'T THE LAST YOU'LL HEAR OF ME CLAYTON CONNOLLY!!"
"I'm counting the days." Clayton smirked with a small wave.
"Welp, I best git on back t' work. That was one helluva match there sonnie. When'd ye get yer license?" Clay sighed.
"Thanks." Clayton nodded. "I got Sebastian today, Bolt and my license yesterday."
"Well shine my stars, that's a Pichu!" Clay smirked at the sight of Bolt, who attempted to hide behind Clayton's head. "I ain't never seen one of them little varmints around here before I reckon."
"Yeah, that's what Professor Juniper told me earlier today." Clayton smiled.
"Professor Juniper. Then that means you got one of them Pokedextual doohickey contraptions?"
"Uh- yes." Clayton nodded.
"So, are you a researcher, or a challenger?" Clayton asked. "An' wheres it you needs to go?"
"We're heading to Nimbasa City." Clayton replied. "This is Katherine, by the way. She wants to participate in the Pokemon Musical, but she's a pretty tough trainer too."
"Yup, I'm taking the Gym challenge along with Clayton!"
"Excellent, always nice t' see new blood 'ere." Clay smiled. "How many badges you got? With skills like them, I'd reckon you got about two'r three."
"Actually, we don't have any. We're on our way to Straiton to start." Clayton smiled. "In fact, we were about to go through Chargestone Cave before Manfred decided to try and treat people's Pokemon like common live stock."
"PFFT-WHAT?!" Clay stammered, taken aback. "You're a natural pardner. I eagerly look forward to our battle. But I've got some bad news on behalf of this here cave. Some hooligan went around upsettin' the Joltiks, Galvantulas, and even the Tynamos. All o' them are making a huge ruckus, and the Cave is a hazard, especially t' new trainers, such as yerself. No offense. But I can't allow you to access this here cavern until they's all calmed down."
"How long do you suppose it'll take?" Katherine asked.
"Oh, I'd reckon about two, maybe three days tops. Them varmints are feisty right now, an' it's my duty to protect ya'll new folk, even if ye got good trainer's skills. Nope, if such an occurrence were to happen, ya'll'd need my badge to prove you can tough it out. 'Course I haven't had a proper challenge in a while. Sorry t' burst your bubbles pardners."
"Is that Clay?" A female's voice called from behind them.
"It is, Ms. Skyla." Clay took off his hat, revealing a bald head, his hair ringing around the brim of his hat. "I was jus' warning these here trainers o' the danger this chaos in the Chargestone Cave is."
"Oh no." Clayton whispered to himself, as Bolt and Sebastian tilted their heads.
"Ohmigosh, is that Clayton Connolly with you?!" Skyla asked, summoning her Swoobat. "She didn't get to say goodbye to you."
"You know Skyla?" Katherine asked. "You never told me you were friends with a Gym Leader!"
"Her Woobat wasn't feeling well, she was looking for some kind of help. Figured I give it a shot. Told her that Woobat wasn't feeling right because she was going to evolve into Swoobat. No big deal really, anyone could've guessed."
"That was no guess silly!" Skyla replied, as the Swoobat chirped on her shoulder. "You've got some special powers."
"That's kind of you to say." Clayton replied quickly. "But it was just a lucky guess. So, what brings you here?"
"Well, some obviously rich kid barrels into the Pokemon Center, grumbling about some wicked strong trainer that brutalized him at the Chargestone Cave. As acting lawperson of Mistralton, I came to investigate, and I figured he had it coming."
"He did." Clayton nodded, as Katherine agreed as well, flabbergasted by Clayton's friendly talk with the Gym Leader.
"So, you guys are heading to Striaton City then?"
"Yes ma'am, well, I'm heading to Nimbasa to be in the Musical. He's going to Straiton first."
"First, don't call me ma'am." Skyla shuddered. "I'm only seventeen for goodness sake. You're making me feel old! Secondly, you're going to have to wait a while. Chargestone is dangerous during this outbreak."
Katherine and Clayton shrugged, disappointed. As Skyla grinned.
"Buuuut. I am a Pilot, and I have some imports waiting for me at Nimbasa AND Castelia City. I could give you guys a lift in my plane. Unfortunately though, Clayton will have to walk from Castelia City to Nacrene, and then to Straiton from there. But I'm sure he can pull it off!"
"That'd be great!" Katherine replied.
"Well, I'm glad it's all settled then. I'll be seein' you young'uns around. But fer now, I got some bugs to calm down, and some gems to mine whiles I'm at it. Pleasure meetin' you both, and Clayton, I'm lookin' forward to our battle. I wanta see Sebastian wipe the floor with me, because trust me, I will NOT hold back after what I saw here."
"I look forward to it." Clay smirked at Clayton's sentence, holding out his hand, to which Clayton nodded and accepted it.
"Well then, shall we get going?" Skyla asked.
"Absolutely. This should be fun!" Katherine smiled.
The Captain's Crew:
Chapter 5: Revelations
"WHEN I SAID THIS WAS GOING TO BE FUN, THIS WASN'T WHAT I HAD IN MIND!" Katherine wailed, grasping onto a handle fixated onto the inner wall of the cargo plane.
"YEAH, SORRY ABOUT THIS," Skyla replied sheepishly. "I'M RUNNING A BIT LATE, AND I REALLY NEED TO GET TO CASTELIA, OTHERWISE MISTRALTON CITY IS GOING TO BE PUT IN SOME SERIOUSLY DARK TIMES."
"STILL, WAS THIS COSTUME STRICTLY NECESSARY?!" Katherine glanced down at herself.
Clayton tried his hardest not to laugh at how ridiculous his friend looked. From the back, she looked like a giant Emolga. The only way you could tell otherwise was her cute, human face, and the locks of brunette hair trailing down her neck, whipping back and forth from the force of the wind that seeped from the open cargo bay door.
"YOU'LL BE ALRIGHT, THE PEOPLE OF NIMBASA JUST ADORE EMOLGA'S ANYWAY. CHANCES ARE YOU'LL GET A HUGE ROUND OF APPLAUSE WHEN YOU LAND!" Skyla squeaked, the roar of the wind drowning out most of her voice. "JUST REMEMBER TO KEEP YOUR ARMS AND LEGS SPREAD OUT ALL THE WAY DOWN, COUNT TO TEN, AND PULL THE CHUTE! AS A PRECAUTION, SEEINGS HOW THIS IS YOUR FIRST TIME, I'LL BE SENDING MY TRANQUILL TO PULL YOUR CHUTE FOR YOU, IN CASE YOU FORGET."
Katherine frowned, glancing back at Clayton, her lips trembling. She quickly wrapped her arms around him in a tight embrace, before he whispered in her ear,
"See you soon, have fun!"
With that, she separated, as he gently pushed her out the back. Surprised momentarily, Katherine glared up at him before deploying the Emolga wingsuit's 'wings', rapidly reducing her momentum. Clayton waved down to her, as Skyla's Tranquill hovered down to assist her if needed. Reaching her target altitude, the Tranquill's beak lashed out at her parachute cord, yanking as hard as the bird could, the chute exploded out of her chute's bag, a giant Pikachu's face exploded out of the top of the parachute, smiling up at Clayton.
Of course, the trainer shouldn't of looked, as memories of Bolt's mother suddenly flashed into his thoughts. The grin on his face sunk, before he found himself turning away from the sight, Skyla closing the bay door. Patting Bolt, who had hidden in his vest's pocket, the mouse quickly scaled up his trainer's shoulder, tilting his head in confusion.
"Why so upset master?" Bolt asked.
"I'm just worried about her." Clayton lied. "Jerks like Plasma could be anywhere in Unova, and I'd hate to see her lose Candy or her Oshawott."
"Oh." Bolt frowned. "But it seemed like you only got upset when you saw her giant cloth thingy."
The innocence in his Pichu's voice made his guilt only worse, he knew he would eventually have to tell Bolt the truth. But he wanted to wait a little bit. He had only been born the day before, and he felt it would be too soon.
"I've laid out some food, you should let your team rest and chow down." Skyla smiled, as she offered a hand to Bolt, who hesitantly accepted, the Gym leader placing him on a crate with a small bowl of food. "I'd also like to talk with you for a bit."
"I really ca- OW, OW HEY!" Clayton started, as Skyla reached all the way up to his ear and dragged him into the cockpit.
"Do you take me for a fool, Clayton Connolly?!" Skyla growled.
"What do you mean by that?"
"Earlier, when I tried to thank you yet again for helping me with Woobat. You shrugged off your ability to talk with Pokemon as a 'lucky guess'. I'm not stupid, even with the common misconception that all models are ditz's."
"I'm sorry, I didn't mean to imply you were stupid. I was more than happy to help you when I did. I just don't need it getting out, especially to her that I can. Ever since we were kids, Katherine has always wanted to be a trainer that travels alongside me. If she found out I could communicate with Pokemon, she'd constantly ask me on a day to day basis what her Pokemon were saying." Clayton sighed. "Not that I wouldn't mind helping her out or anything, but it'd get obsessive. I figured I save the grand unveiling for a more appropriate time."
"I think it's a cool ability, and you shouldn't be embarrassed or neglect it. What if one day you woke up and you couldn't talk to them anymore? Then what would you do?"
Clayton froze, he never thought of that before. The Pilot, who covered for Skyla, only glanced at him with a confused expression.
"Eyes on the road genius." Clayton spat. "Yeah, I can talk to Pokemon. Yes, I'll talk to yours when we land. No, I will not come to your kids birthday party."
The Pilot frowned for a beat, then returned his eyes to the clouds they were traveling through.
"Okay, I might come to your kids party. But no promises."
"Thanks again for the ride Skyla. If you see my Mother, tell her to send my medicine via my PC. I forgot to pack it." Clayton smiled, as he clipped Sebastian's ball to his belt, and Bolt rested on his shoulder.
"I will." Skyla smiled. "But Clayton, keep in mind what I said. Take advantage of what you have while you can, and don't be afraid of it anymore."
Clayton nodded, as he left the harbor where the aquatic cargo plane had docked. Glancing up at the majesty that was Castelia City, his moment of grandeur was interrupted, as Bolt gasped in his ears.
"Those things are HUUUUUGE!" Bolt's eyes widened in awe, turning his head towards Clayton. "Is our first big bad guy battle here?"
"Big bad guy?" Clayton asked. "Oh, you mean the Gym? Gym leaders aren't bad people. They just like to test Trainers and Pokemon. Look at Skyla, she fed you and gave us a lift, shaving potential weeks of waiting off of our schedule."
"Ms. Skyla is a Gym Leader?" Bolt's ears perked up. "I wanna battle her!"
Clayton chuckled at his mouse's cuteness. Patting the rodent's soft fur gently, Clayton glanced down at his town map.
"Sometime, yes." Clayton grinned. "You can battle her. But first we have to toughen up a bit. Which means you might have to start battling soon."
Suddenly Clayton's Xtransciever went off, and Katherine's face appeared, red as a cherry tomato. If he didn't know any better, he could've sworn he had seen steam trailing out of her ears, and daggers in her pupils.
"CLAYTON CONNOLLY, YOU HAVE SOME NERVE!" Katherine exploded.
"We both know you are afraid of heights, and if it wasn't me that did it, you wouldn't have gone to Nimbasa, or Skyla would've done it instead of me. I saved you the trouble of either scenarios."
"Still, you could've warned me first. You really scared me there." Her eyes welled up with tears, not good.
"I'm sorry. Sincerely. I just figured it would save you time, and you could actually get some attention before your big debut on the stage!"
"Well, I did get a whole bunch of attention." Katherine smiled. "Skyla was right, they loved the Emolga costume, and the entrance! I even have a show tomorrow, that's how much the Director liked me!"
"That's great!" Clayton grinned. "Wish I could be there to see you!"
Katherine blushed at this, as she shook off his comment.
"Next time you see me Clayton Connolly, I'm going to beat you in a battle! This I swear!"
"I'm looking forward to it, have fun Katie." Clayton grinned. "By the way, you know how to get to Nacrene city?"
"Uh Clayton, look at the tunnel behind you, you dunce." Katherine chuckled, as Clayton turned to read a giant sign.
Leaving Castelia so soon? We're sorry to see you go, but Pinwheel Forest and Nacrene City are just as beautiful this time of year. This way. We hope you visit us again!
"Oh. Hehe. Thanks Katherine."
"Of course!" she smiled.
With that, she hung up the phone, leaving Clayton to his travel to Pinwheel Forest, Nacrene beyond that, and Striaton beyond that.
Clayton sat beneath a tree momentarily to catch his breath. The walk across that bridge had been horrendous. Normally he would have had Sebastian out walking beside him. But he knew that Sebastian would still be exhausted from his battle with Manfred's Heatmor.
He clenched his fists at the thought of that pompous rich boy. He focused on nothing more than to overdo his battles, bringing actual harm, or even death, to his opponent's Pokemon. Without even a hint of any remorse. What he had said to the rich boy was mostly out of spite, coming from a family that had to supply everything for themselves, work for their keep. But he wasn't lying when he said he would maim him if he ever saw him threaten another Pokemon again.
"Oh for pete's sake. Why is it that I'm the only Pokemon Professor that seemingly has the worst of luck. Perhaps I'm not worthy to be called a Professor, like Professor Oak." The voice paused for a second. "And who am I talking to? I'm a scientific mind, I shouldn't be resorting to conversing with myself!"
"Hello?" Clayton growled from the other side of the tree.
"Good heavens! Now I'm hearing voices. Dementia, Paranoia, all leading up to Schizophrenia! I never should have left Johto!"
"Cool your outrage Dragonite." Clayton chuckled. "Look around this tree. I'd get up, but my legs are killing me."
The sound of feet rustling in the autumn leaves made Bolt's ears perk further, as a friendly gentleman turned the corner. Clayton took a quick second to examine the man. He wore the typical white lab coat of a Pokemon Professor. His balding head glimmered in the little sunlight the forest had to offer, his soft brown hair billowing in the wind. Pushing a pair of glasses up the bridge of his nose, the Professor smiled.
"Oh thank Ho-oh! A trainer! I'm so unfamiliar with Unova and it's inhabiting Pokemon." the Professor regained his composure. "I am Professor Elm from the Johto region. I'm in Unova on a Professor conference being held in Accumula Town."
"I'm Clayton Connolly. Nice to meet you Professo-"
"Holy LUGIA! Is that a PICHU?!"
"Uh- yes. Yes he is."
"Extraordinary!" Elm grinned, quickly taking a knee to examine Bolt. "It is exceedingly rare to find one of these in the Unova region."
"Trust me Professor, you aren't the first to tell me that." Clayton chuckled, glancing at Bolt. "It's alright, he's just excited to see you is all."
"By any chance, did you witness this Pichu hatch from it's egg?" Elm asked, his eyes glinting with determination.
"Not necessarily, but I was present after the fact."
"What about his mother?"
Clayton froze for a moment, as Bolt turned to face him.
"I found his egg in the forest out back of my house." Clayton partially told the truth. "His mother and father were no-where to be seen. As a Trainer to be, I felt it was my duty to protect him from from any harm."
"Did you ever begin to think that perhaps they were scavenging for food? Or perhaps aware of your presence and hiding?"
"No, but there were some Herdiers stalking around the area, I actually fended them off and brought the egg to the safety of my home." Clayton growled. "Look, are we going to play twenty questions, because if so, I'd rather talk about something else."
Elm, however, was persistent.
"What if they are worried about him? You've successfully taken their child away from them!"
Bolt turned to face Clayton, anger in his tiny eyes. Snapping, Clayton grabbed the man's coat by the scruff and glared at Professor Elm. Gritting his teeth, tears rolled down his cheeks.
"Those Herdiers weren't just stalking his egg, where they?"
"No." Clayton shuddered. "Bolt's father was no-where to be seen, but after what I had witnessed, it was safe to assume he was gone. They attacked his mother, who defended her egg with her dying breath. I fended off the Herdiers and took Bolt's egg inside, vowing to watch over him. I had WANTED to wait to tell him until he was much older and could trust me a bit more. But that's kind of out the window."
Turning his head towards Bolt, a single, warm tear flowed down his cheek. Depressingly enough for Clayton, the tear that rolled down his cheek wasn't his, it was Bolts. The Pichu's tiny paws wrapped around his neck.
"I'm so sorry Bolt. I honestly wanted to tell you, but didn't know how or when was a good enough time." Bolt's tiny paws squeezed his neck harder, his tiny tail drooped, and brushed against Clayton's shoulder. "But I promise with all my being that I will never leave you, I will never give up on you, and I will make Team Plasma pay for the toll they've so gladly brought themselves. Could you ever forgive me?"
"Yes." Bolt replied between sobs. "Thank you for everything."
Elm stood, clearly he wanted to give them some time alone. Clayton, however, gestured that he should sit for a minute, and the Professor obliged.
"I'm sorry, I didn't mean to push when I do. I'm just fascinated with Pokemon origins, and especially Pokemon Eggs. When I start to think about them, I get really excited, and I kind of flew off the handle like that."
"It's alright, you didn't know. Besides, you really helped me with a pressing matter, so we'll call it even." Clayton asked, wiping teary residue from his eyes. "So, what is your conference about?"
"We're discussing new Pokemon discoveries in the Kalos region, and exhibiting our rare Pokemon to one another. Even the prestigious Professor Oak will be there, and he's giving out his traditional 'starter' Pokemon; Charmander, Squirtle, and Bulbasaur. This year I'll be giving out Cyndaquil, Totodile, and Chikorita." Elm pat the backpack slung over his shoulder.
"Well, I'm on the way to Straiton City, which is practically next door to Accumula Town. I could escort you there if you'd like."
"Oh, that would be great!" Elm grinned. "I was so afraid I'd be lost in this woods forever, and be ashamed to show myself around Professor Oak and the others. I'll tell you what, I'll give you one of my three showcase Pokemon if you stop by after the conference."
"Let's just get you there first." Clayton sighed as he stood, Bolt still gripping him tightly. "It's going to be dark soon, so we might have to get moving. We'll probably get to Accumula by nightfall."
The Captain's Crew:
Chapter 6: Route 3 and Straiton City.
The walk through the Pinwheel forest had been a long and grueling one. The Pokemon professor sighed with relief as they broke the clearing. They rested for a moment, Clayton checking on Sebastian's health. Despite his disadvantage to the Bugs and Poison type Pokemon they encountered in the woods, Sebastian had held his own fairly well. He'd need some resting time within his Pokeball.
"Alright," Clayton turned to face the Professor. "We're in Necrene. All we have to do is cross through Route 3, Striaton, and Route 2 to get to Accumula town. Seeings how we're here, we have two options. We get a couple of rooms at the Pokemon Center, or we continue on foot and get to Striaton before nightfall."
Elm tensed slightly, as he contemplated the choices. Clayton could understand, the man worked in a lab most of his time, and he wasn't quite as outdoorsy as he might have been when he began his career. After a few brief minutes, Elm sighed deeply, turning to face the trainer.
"I think I can manage Straiton by tonight. The convention is tomorrow in the afternoon, so that should give me some time to prepare for my presentation."
"You should know, Professor, Pokemon will be much more active during sun-down. Will you be alright with battling?" Clayton wanted to make sure before they continued.
"I'm sure, with your Sebastian and my three Pokemon, we should be fine."
Clayton nodded respectfully, as he continued to walk through the town. He decided that if they were going to tough it out, he'd stop by the Pokemon Center anyways and grab some chow for everyone.
Elm waited outside, probably practicing his presentation for the day after. Clayton approached the red-haired woman behind the counter. He, like many others, marveled how Nurse Joys all around the world were related to each other, and looked so strikingly the same, despite having different parents.
Shaking the thought from his head, he smiled as she turned to face him, her Audino assistant bowing to greet him.
"Good evening, and welcome to the Pokemon Center!" Joy smiled, bowing. "Are you here for a room?"
"No thanks," Clayton replied, returning Bolt to his Pokeball, handing her his and Sebastian's. "Just looking for them to get a bit of rest, and then we're going to do some night-time training."
"Very well then." she grinned, placing the two Pokeballs on the machine. "Lenora is a very tough woman, and many Trainers have quite a bit of trouble with her."
"Oh no," Clayton stammered. "I came from Mistralton, I'm doing the circuit in order, starting from Straiton and working my way up Unova."
"Oh." Joy's face turned red. "My apologies."
"Don't be. I'll keep that in mind when I come back through." Clayton nodded as she returned him his Pokeballs. "Thank you, and have a great evening."
"We hope you excel." Joy bowed. "Thank you for coming."
Clayton waved and exited the building, with Elm still mumbling to himself. Shaken from his thought process, Elm followed behind Clayton, as they entered Route 3. The sunset glanced off the colorful leaves, as Tympoles, Pidoves, Throhs and Sawks fled through the tall grass and into the trees beyond. It was getting late, and the nocturnal Pokemon were sure to be out very soon. Noticeably, Woobats descended from the treetops, as Bug Pokemon of all sorts that were much too late to retreat were quickly hunted upon.
Bolt shuddered, frightened by everything going on. A swarm of the bats lowered on them, as a blast of fire quickly dispersed them. Glancing over, a tiny ferret like Pokemon sat at Elm's feet, fire dancing on it's back end.
"Cyndaquil, light our way please."
"You gots it boss." the Cyndaquil replied, glancing up at Clayton with a confused look. "Who the hell are you?"
"This is Clayton." Elm explained. "He's helping me out."
Elm shrugged off the looks that Clayton gave him afterward.
"I can't actually hear what they say, I just have this feeling he was confused." Elm stammered quickly.
"That's pretty neat." Clayton replied, contemplating whether or not to tell the man. "Have- have you ever heard of anyone that could talk to Pokemon before?"
"No- No I can't honestly say I've had. I've known several Pokemon Trainers that have a sixth sense, much like me, where we just... know what they want to say."
Clayton nodded silently, as the Cyndaquil's flames kept their general vicinity cleared of all unwanted attention. Unless, of course, you were a trainer.
"Hey!" a young boy called from the trees. "You there, in the vest, you're a Trainer, yes?!"
"Yeah." Clayton replied. "What of it?"
"I challenge you to a battle!" he replied, running over to them.
Clayton glanced over to Elm, who nodded. As the boy turned his hat around by the brim. Clayton jumped backwards, as Elm's Cyndaquil lit the entirety of the field up with his flame. Grasping Sebastian's ball off of his belt, he tossed it forward, as the boy returned, their Pokeballs clashing in the center of the field. Sebastian tail-whipped the ball back to Clayton's hand, glancing at his foe.
A small, blue monkey with a strange hairdo squeaked in delight as he prepared to battle.
"Panpour, Fury Swipes!" the boy called.
The blue monkey dove towards Sebastian, who quickly bounced off of his tail to dodge the move.
"Growth Sebastian!" Clayton called.
Sebastian sucked in air, raising his self confidence, and making himself appear bigger than the Panpour. Again the Monkey dove and swiped with it's tiny claws, raking across Sebastian's chest.
"Ah you nasty little arse you!" he growled, diving out of the way from the follow-up.
"Use Vine-whip Sebastian!" Clayton barked.
Sebastian bounced off of his tail again, gaining tremendous height as he flipped over his Trainer's head, the Panpour giving chase. What the Monkey hadn't been expecting, however, was a nasty green vine smashing it across the face, launching it into the nearby river.
"Water Pulse!" the Trainer cried, as his Panpour gulped a mouthful of the water.
Forcing a stream of water at Sebastian, it formed a ring, which pulsed with mysterious energy, launching him back into a tree, hard. The colored leaves descended from the tree tops, layering over the Snivy in a small pile.
However, a small bit of light burst from the leaves, illuminating the entirety of the field. Clayton grinned, he pointed his Pokedex at the pile of leaves, as it registered.
"Servine, the Grass Snake Pokemon. Servine moves along the ground as if it were sliding. Servine's swift motions befuddle it's foes. It avoids attacks by sinking into thick foliage, and attacks with it's masterful whipping techniques."
"Alright Sebastian, let's finish this Panpour with a Leaf Tornado!"
Sebastian's eyes glowed green from beneath the pile of leaves he had hidden in, as they floated into the air above him. Running in a circle, he increased his speed dramatically, as the leaves whipped around in a cyclone of dust, leaves, and air. Rushing forward, the tornado followed his guidance, quickly lifting the Panpour out of the river, slicing it with the leaves, before discarding it at the rival Trainer's feet.
"Heh, good use of type advantages." the Trainer replied, returning his monkey to it's Pokeball. "Now it's my turn. Go Pidove!"
Throwing another Pokeball in front of him, a tiny Pigeon Pokemon appeared.
Clayton knew bird type Pokemon had the advantage, glancing on to his shoulder, Bolt nodded. It was to be his first legitimate battle. Returning Sebastian to his Pokeball, Clayton pointed at the field before him, as Bolt scampered down his length onto the battlefield before him.
Opening the Pokedex, he pointed it at Pichu.
"Unknown Pokemon, is not registered in Unovan archives. Known moves include; Sweet Kiss, Growl, Thundershock, Thunderwave."
"Bolt, Sweet Kiss!" Clayton ordered, as his Pichu bolted across the field towards the bird.
Planting his lips on the Pidove's cheeks cutely, Bolt lightly pecked at the bird. It shook it's head, it was utterly confused by what the mouse Pokemon had done.
"C'mon Pidove! Use Gust!"
The Pidove glanced over to it's Trainer, unable to comprehend the order he had just made. Glancing back over to the mouse, the Bird cooed as it pondered the correct decision. Clayton carefully noticed as it's eyes rolled, as if it was completely unable to decide for itself what to do.
Slapping itself in the face with it's own wing, the Pidove stumbled backwards, trying to get a hold of itself, even so much as pecking at it's own Trainer's legs in it's frenzy.
"Bolt, finish it off with a Thundershock!"
"TAAAAAKE THISSSSS!" Bolt roared, as clouds filled the starry heavens momentarily, a single bolt of lightning flashed in the sky above, striking down on the bird.
Fluttering momentarily as the electricity coursed through it's muscles, the bird flopped around for a moment, before cooing in defeat. As it's Trainer returned it. Without speaking a word, the Trainer sighed, handing Clayton a wad of cash and ran off in the direction of Nacrene.
Bolt turned back, smiling bravely as he climbed back up onto Clayton's shoulders.
"Right then, let's continue shall we?" Elm asked.
The remainder of their walk through Route 3 they remained quiet, as another hour or two passed before lights could be seen in the distance.
"There it is!" Clayton grinned happily, turning to Elm. "Could you do me a favor?"
"I am forever indebted to you." Elm replied with a smile. "How can I help?"
"Go to the Pokemon Center and reserve a room for me too? I'm going to stop by the Gym and reserve a quick battle for the morning."
Elm nodded, as him and Cyndaquil walked down the street, past the Gym, and into the Pokemon Center. Clayton sighed nervously as he entered the Gym, which had been disguised as a typical restaurant.
"Ah welcome!" a green haired individual waved to him from one of the tables. "Are you here as a customer or a challenger?"
"I've come to challenge the Gym Leader." Clayton replied boldly, as his eyes widened when two other men, looking identical to the green haired man, only with blue and red hair respectively, stepped forward.
"Welcome to the Gym." the blue haired one replied. "I am Cress, swimin' with the Water type."
"Hey, what's up?!" the red haired one growled. "I am Chili, rollin' with the Fire type!"
"How do you do?" the green haired one bowed nervously. "Um, I'm Cilan, grazin' with the Grass Type."
"Er- I thought I only battled one Gym Leader in a gym, not THREE." Clayton replied with a panic, as the three of them chuckled.
"No no!" Cress stifled further laughter. "Our Gym, being the first official one in the circuit, test new Trainer's abilities to use Type advantages to their... advantage!"
"So tell me!" Chili barked. "What was your first Pokemon?!"
Clayton nonchalantly tilted his head over to Bolt, who stood rigid on his shoulder.
"What type is he- if I may?" Cilan replied.
"Bolt is an electric type, have you guys never encountered a Pichu before?"
"NO!" Chili growled. "I think I speak for all three of us when I say they aren't from the Unova region, therefore we haven't encountered one."
"What my brother means to say," Cress sighed. "Is that we cannot base whom you will challenge based off of him, do you have any other Pokemon?"
"Sebastian my Servine." Clayton replied, releasing the Servine.
"Excellent!" Cilan grinned. "A grass type! That means you'll fight-"
Chili shoved Cilan aside, pumping his fist in the air.
"Hell yeah! It's been so long since I've gotten a challenger! Let's make this interesting, shall we?"
"Oh, I don't have time right now." Clayton replied. "It's very late and my team is tired. I was hoping to schedule tomorow?"
"Oh really?!" Chili grinned nastily. "Y'know tomorrow is the Professor's expo, where new Trainers such as yourself have the chance to get a Starter that isn't just from Unova, so we might be pretty packed by little kids."
"I'm aware." Clayton replied bluntly. "In fact, I'm escorting Professor Elm to Accumula town tomorrow afternoon. That's why I wanted it in the Morning, just before I head out."
Cress shook his head at Chili's attitude and pulled up a book.
"Clayton Connolly from Mistralton City."
"Alright, are you available at nine o'clock tomorrow morning?" Clayton nodded. "Very well, Chili will battle you. If you come early, we will serve you and Professor Elm some breakfast before your battle. If you win, we'll pick up the tab. If you lose, though, you must pay."
"Sounds good." Clayton nodded. "I'll see you tomorrow."
With that, he returned Sebastian to his Pokeball, and left the restaurant, heading to the Pokemon Center.
"It's awfully late out." Nurse Joy stated. "Are you hear for a room?"
Clayton returned Bolt again, handing her Sebastian and his Pokeball to her. Placing them on the tray behind her, the machine whirred to life.
"Actually yes, Professor Elm reserved two rooms?"
"Ah, so you must be his escort." Joy smiled. "That's an awful nice thing you have done. We've upgraded your room to an Ace Trainer's room. You'll find high quality Pokechow in there for your Pokemon, and if you require any food or drink, a refrigerator is available."
Handing him back his Pokeballs, Joy bowed again.
"Audino will now show you to your room Mr. Connolly. Thank you for choosing us, and good luck with your Gym Battle tomorrow!"
Clayton waved happily as Audino lead him to a room towards the back. Handing him the key, he unlocked the door. Gazing in, he was amazed at the paintings of various Pokemon in battles, and the red and gold vinyled Pokeball that was on the comforter on the bed. Releasing Bolt and Sebastian once more, the two of them approached the bowls on the floor.
Pouring a decent portion according to their sizes, he lazed back on the chair, opening the fridge to find a sandwich. Taking a bite, he recalled asking Skyla to have his mother send him his medicine. Accessing the PC in the corner of the room, he logged in with his credentials, accessed the data storage, and prompted a withdrawal of his Bronzong's Special Elixer.
Beneath the monitor, a tray waited patiently as the bottle of Elixer materialized. Plucking it out of the machine, he took a deep, brave swig of his medicine. Recoiling from the bitter aftertaste, he placed it in the refrigerator and returned to his sandwich and the comfy chair. He didn't get far into said sandwich, however, as his two Pokemon turned to face him.
"What was that stuff?" Bolt asked, jumping onto his knee.
"Yeah, I've been meanin' t' ask yeah how in the devil ye've been able t' understand what we've been sayin' boyo."
"Sebastian's on the right track," Clayton started with a whisper. "I drink that stuff because I can understand everything you guys are saying. If I don't drink it, it hurts my head hearing you guys talk, and I get really, really sick."
"Oh no," Bolt frowned, his ears drooping. "I don't want that."
"So what yer sayin', is that without that stuff, you can't understand us any more?"
"Yeah. My father gave me a bottle of it when I was younger, when he realized I could talk to Pokemon." Clayton paused. "He also said something much more dire would happen, so that I shouldn't stop drinking it. First thing I'm doing when we get to Accumula, besides dropping off Elm, is getting another bottle from Silph Co.'s website."
"Now it's my turn for a question." Clayton asked, looking over towards Sebastian. "Why didn't you tell me you were that close?"
"Close?" he asked, looking down at himself. "Oh yeah. T' be honest with you, I had no idea whatsoever that this was gonna happen. When I hit that tree, and those leaves fell on me, I just felt so determined to beat him. Yeah, I had the type advantage, but he was a strong monkey, far stronger than that Heatmor earlier today. Next thing I know, there's this bright light and I'm a little bit taller and my tails a bit longer too."
"That was so cool!" Bolt squeaked. "Was that Evolution?"
"Yep." Sebastian lifted his snout proudly. "I'm sure it'll happen to you one day, mousey."
Bolt's ears stood up, new hope filling him, as Clayton yawned. Finishing his sandwich, he stood, Bolt clambering up onto his shoulder. Sebastian yawned himself, curling up on the foot of the bed, as Clayton too situated himself on the bed. Bolt crept up Clayton's chest, lightly pecking him on the cheek, before falling asleep on his Trainer's abdomen.
Clayton lay there for a while, thinking of everything he had encountered. It was his very first day as a Pokemon Trainer, and so much had already happened. He couldn't wait to see what the rest of his adventure through Unova had to offer him. Before he knew it, everything went dark, and he fell asleep, his Pokemon at his side.
The Captain's Crew:
Chapter 7: Trail and Error.
Clayton rose from his sleep as he stretched. Surprisingly, his sleep last night had been better than the one before. He deduced it was from the comfort of sleeping with his Pokemon, but there was no way for certain.
Bolt's head wearily lifted as he yawned, having rolled off of Clayton and curled up beside his Trainer's head. Sebastian, however, sat in the comfy chair, shaking his head towards Clayton.
"Y'know, bein' a Trainer means you really can't afford t' be sleepin' the whole day away." Sebastian scowled.
"I don't want to hear it," Clayton chuckled, entering the bathroom. "You're a grass type Pokemon, you are powered by the sun. I'm a Human being, it's a whole different formula."
"Well I believe the Professor was just knocking on your door." Sebastian replied, "He's headed to the Gym for breakfast. Said something about it bein' 'eight or so'."
Clayton tensed, he was going to be late for his battle if he didn't hurry up! Quickly brushing his teeth and giving his scattered hair a quick brushing. Clayton donned a fresh pair of clothes, placing his old clothes in his older, rattier backpack. Cress had mentioned breakfast for both him and his Pokemon, so he didn't bother wasting time with that.
Making the bed up, Clayton returned Sebastian to his Pokeball, his electric mouse climbing up his torso and back onto his shoulder. Locking the door behind him, Clayton left the keys on the nurse's counter. Joy smiled and nodded, her Audino waving cutely as he passed.
Hurrying down the road, Clayton nearly tripped on a small, round, pink Pokemon. Stopping, he turned towards the floating little creature. To him, the Pokemon looked like a pig floating in air, a trunk-like nose bounced carelessly off of it's face.
"Sorry about that." Clayton replied. "You alright?"
"Human." it stammered, frightened, before scurrying off through the trees.
"Damn it!" a woman cried as she stomped over. "That was a Munna right?"
"I dunno. I just hope I didn't hurt it." Clayton shrugged. "Was it your Pokemon?"
"Boy would I like it to be." the woman nodded. "My name is Fennel, I'm a friend of Professor Juniper. I study Dream Mist, a strange material that Munna and it's evolved form Musharna, create."
"I'm really sorry Fennel. My name is Clayton. I didn't see it there, and I certainly didn't mean to harm it."
"It's quite alright, but if you get a chance, could you stop by the Dream Yard and perhaps catch me one? I can reward you pretty well for it."
"I'll definitely keep it in mind, but I have somewhere I have to be. But I will try." Clayton nodded.
Walking away, Clayton stepped into the Gym. Cilan, Cress, and Chili stood over the Pokemon Professor, whom stuffed a decent chunk of pancakes into his mouth. The three hosts bowed respectively for the trainer, Cilan even being kind enough to pull out a chair for Clayton. Cress placed a couple of bowls on the floor for Bolt and Sebastian, while Chili pulled up a cart of freshly made breakfast foods.
Clayton sat, staring hungrily at the amazing looking food on the plate in front of him. Chili, as his challenge, served him a three course meal of pancakes, oatmeal, and fresh fruit. Clayton spent little time waiting to eat, he hadn't had much with that sandwich the night before, and this certainly made up for it. Sebastian and Bolt also delighted with their delicious Pokechow, lightly covered with a touch of honey as a treat.
When he and his Pokemon had finished, Cilan and Cress cleared the table, while Chili handed Clayton the receipt. Clayton's eyes widened, if he lost, he'd barely be able to cover the costs. Placing the bill in his vest's pockets, he stood. Cracking his neck, he readied himself for the battle, while his two Pokemon did their own stretches and aerobics.
"When you are ready, follow me." Chili replied bluntly, walking past a curtain with the symbolic image of the Fire-types.
"Good luck in there Clayton. This will be my first time witnessing a Gym Battle, so I'm just as excited as you are!" Elm nodded. His three Pokemon, the Cyndaquil from the previous night, a blue Crocodile, and a green four legged creature with a leaf on it's head cheered for him, the Crocodile moreso than the other two.
"Go and get that fire-head!" it shouted with a surprisingly feminine voice.
Clayton nodded, walking past the curtain as it opened, massive stage lights lit up the stage, which doubled as the arena. Cilan stepped forward, a blue and red flag in both of his hands.
"Today's Gym challenge will now begin. To my right is brother and Gym Leader Chili, user of the fire types!" Cilan said loudly and clearly, raising the red flag. "To my left is challenger and beginning trainer, Clayton Connolly of Mistralton city."
"The rules in this fight are simple, there will be only two Pokemon on both sides. Trainers are not allowed to swap their Pokemon until either one faints. First to two K.O's is named victor."
Raising the blue flag for Clayton, he lowered them both, signaling the battle could begin. Clayton readied Bolt, pointing for him to go first, as Chili threw a Pokeball towards the center of the field. Bolt scurried to his side of the field, little sparks erupting out of his cheeks. A Lillipup exploded out of Chili's Pokeball, hopping on it's paws in anticipation. Probably to chase the mouse around.
"Work up!" Chili barked, as his Lillipup bounced around, even more excited than before.
"Thunderwave Bolt!" Clayton commanded, Bolt rubbed his little paws against his cheeks, causing Static electricity.
Concentrating, Bolt charged past the dog, barely brushing up against it, the shock causing the Lillipup's legs to lock up. Lillipup growled angrily, no-longer playful.
"Take down!" Chili tensed, clenching his fists.
"Sweet Kiss!" Clayton roared, as Bolt nodded, scampering across the field.
The Lillipup charged towards the mouse, it's hind legs still cramped from the electricity, slowing it's movements. Bolt stood beside the dog, sweetly planting a kiss on it's cheek. Like the Pidove the night before, the Lillipup was taken completely aback by the stunt the mouse had pulled. Much like the bird, it contemplated it's next move, whether or not to attack the mouse or itself.
For a brief moment, the Lillipup was distracted, but eventually came to. Tackling Bolt with all of it's weight, the Lillipup and the mouse flew off of the stage, crashing into one of the many tables. Bolt whined in pain as it stood up from the wreckage, the Lillipup's face filled with pain as well. Clayton jumped off of the stage, making a mad dash towards Bolt.
Bolt, however, wasn't going to give up. Standing, the mouse glared over towards the dog, which looked like it was about to fall over. Clayton nodded, clambering back onto the stage, the two Pokemon glared at one another.
"Thundershock!" Clayton commanded, as a small lightning cloud appeared above their heads, a bolt of lightning struck down on the dog, knocking it completely unconscious.
Clayton, however, knew that Pichu wasn't going to stay conscious for much longer, and requested he return to his Pokeball for a while. Cilan raised the blue flag, while Chili returned his unconscious Pokemon.
"Lillipup is unable to battle! Bolt the Pichu wins!" Cilan barked, as Cress and Elm applauded from the back of the room.
"Alright then, you'd better be ready for this Clayton! 'Cause you're about to get burned!!" Chili gritted his teeth, a bead of sweat rolling down his cheek. "Come out, Pansear!""
"Alright Sebastian, you've got this!" Clayton cheered.
Clayton knew that Sebastian was at a disadvantage, but there was no way Bolt would be able to take on the fiery monkey, even if Sebastian had knocked it around a bit. His only hope relied on the strength Sebastian had obtained when he evolved.
Sebastian glared at the red monkey, who bounced back and forth, from one foot to the other.
"Growth!" Sebastian roared, Sebastian sucking up a breath full of air, raising his confidence and strength.
"Work Up!" Chili replied, his monkey bounced around the stage, getting it's blood pumping from it's excitement.
"Alright, Vine Whip!" Clayton clenched his fists, hoping it would do more damage thanks to his previous growth attack.
"Dodge and use Incinerate!" Chili roared, a fire in his eyes.
Sebastian had a pair of grassy vines sprout from behind his back, as he charged towards the fiery monkey. Swinging his body around, Sebastian whipped his vine like appendages across the monkey's face, having been too fast for the Pansear. However, this put him in a bad position, as the monkey gripped his tail, opening it's mouth.
Blowing outwards, a projectile of pure fire struck Sebastian square in the face. Recoiling, Sebastian winced, he had suffered a nasty burn on the side of his face, a little trickle of blood forming under his snout.
"Leaf tornado!" Clayton roared, as Sebastian began to run in a circle, forming a cyclone of air that sucked in numerous papers, napkins, and other paper thin objects from around the restaurant.
"Pfft, Incinerate." Chili shrugged, as his Pansear aimed it's fiery projectile into the tornado.
As the projectile hit some of the napkins, the many paper-like materials caught on fire, and suddenly Sebastian's Leaf Tornado became a Fire-spin attack. The fire licked outwards, glancing across Sebastian's side, the snake being caught within the inferno. Clayton sighed, Sebastian couldn't take much more of this.
Pulling out his Pokeball, Clayton returned Sebastian to his Pokeball, Chili and his Pansear standing proud.
"Sebastian the Servine is unable to battle, Chili and his Pansear win!" Cilan cheered. "Does the challenger think his Pichu can still battle?"
Clayton stood there, there was absolutely no way Bolt would be able to take another hit without fainting. He had lost, Chili had been too strong. If he had started with Sebastian and let Bolt come in for Pansear, the story would have been different. Shaking his head, Clayton frowned as Cilan officially declared Chili the victor.
Chili walked over, a smug grin on his face. Holding out his hand, Chili grinned.
"Boy, you got me all fired up! But a deal is a deal, and as your server, I'd also like tip, please."
"I'll take the bill." Elm replied, walking towards the stage, his three Pokemon in tow. "He fought with his heart and soul, and he's going to need that money to buy supplies for his adventures. I'd like to pay for his meal."
Clayton looked over at the Professor, who grinned knowingly. The man reached deep into his pocket to find his wallet, handing over the price of the food, plus some tip, to the Gym Leader.
"You are always welcome to re-challenge Chili again." Cress nodded, placing a hand on Clayton's shoulder. "Don't get down on yourself, not many people are able to get past his Lillipup on the first try."
"Put me down in the books for later this evening." Clayton replied boldly, as Elm and him walked out the door.
Hurrying over to the Pokemon Center, Clayton had Bolt and Sebastian patched up. When Joy returned them to him, she bowed with respect, not saying a word. Clayton exited the Pokemon Center, Bolt on his shoulders, ears drooped in disappointment.
"I failed you." Bolt frowned.
"No, you really didn't." Clayton smiled. "It was your first official battle against something that didn't give you a type advantage. I could have easily sent you out, but you were far too hurt, I didn't want to risk your condition getting worse. In fact, you were superb out there! Be proud of that."
"W-what?" Elm asked, confused, as Clayton slapped his hand to his forehead.
"I'll explain on the way to Accumula town." Clayton sighed.
"Wow, that is absolutely fantastic!!!" Elm roared with vigor. "You are the first case of someone who can talk with Pokemon!"
"Keep it down, will you?" Clayton asked sheepishly. "As cool as it is, nothing is more annoying than the reaction. Especially when people ask me to talk to their Pokemon for them."
Elm laughed nervously, his three shrunk Pokeballs in his fingers, at the ready. Clayton sighed, allowing the Professor to release them.
"I don't mean to make you uncomfortable, but... could you tell me what they think of me? Cyndaquil, Totodile, and Chikorita?"
"Does he not think we can understand Human?" the four legged one asked, glancing over towards the Cyndaquil and the crocodile beside her.
"Couldn't say Chikorita." Totodile shrugged, her shiny red eyes glancing up at Clayton. "Oh my goodness, it's you! Sorry about your loss today!"
"It's alright." Clayton said. "I just started my adventure yesterday, had to lose at some point."
"I think the boss is alright." Cyndaquil shrugged off the comments from both Chikorita and Totodile.
"Yeah, he's pretty cool, I guess." Chikorita nodded, her leaf spinning around.
"Eh... I could take or leave him." Totodile shrugged, glancing over to him. "He's always complaining I'm so energetic. It's because I want to battle, but he never lets us spar with one another."
Clayton chuckled at Totodile's comments, as Elm looked over towards him. The man's eyes wide and waiting.
"Cyndaquil respects you, Chikorita thinks you're pretty cool, and Totodile is upset that you never let her battle."
"Her?" Elm said. "Isn't that strange, most of the Pokemon I give out are males."
"Yeah? Well Chikorita is a girl too." Clayton chuckled, glancing down at his watch. "We'll be late if this keeps up!"
"Holy smokes you're right!" Elm howled, returning the three Pokemon.
The two charged through Route 2 and into Accumula town, where dead leaves cascaded from the trees, and the soft music of the local band played. Walking into the city square, Elm smiled at the sight of his fellow Professors. Rushing up onto the hill where they stood, Elm waved him over.
Elm smiled as he stood by an older gentleman in a white labcoat, his short white hair flat against the top of his head.
"Clayton Connolly, this is Professor Oak. He is deemed the Pokemon Professor, having been the first documented Expert in all things Pokemon related."
"It's good to meet you Mr. Connelly." Oak replied. "I am Professor Samuel Oak from the Kanto region. As my colleague Professor Elm has said, I am an expert in many things Pokemon related. How do you do?"
"I'm doing very well, and it's an honor to meet you Professor. I've always heard about you, and it's surreal that I get to meet you face to face."
Oak nodded with a small grin, glancing over at Bolt.
"My my, you have a Pichu. Tell me, have you been to the Kanto or Johto regions?" Oak asked.
"No sir, I found this Pichu's egg. It's a long story, one I don't like to talk about." Clayton frowned. "My apologizes."
"I'm sorry to hear that, but from what Elm tells me, you take a very special care of your Pokemon, and that's what I like to see." Oak smiled. "Well then, I would like to introduce you to the other Professors! Professors Birch, Professor Rowan, and Professor Sycamore."
"Well hiya there!" Birch replied, his coat not quite reaching his knees, his shorts hidden beneath his coat. "I'm Professor Birch from Hoenn! I specialize in Pokemon habitats! It's a pleasure to meet you."
"Clayton Connolly from Unova, it's a pleasure to meet you sir."
"Hmmph, good manners, especially from a teenage trainer." one of the Professors, Rowan, as Oak said, replied. "I am Professor Rowan. I specialize in Pokemon Evolution! I come from the Sinnoh Region."
"That's really neat!" Clayton replied. "So that practically makes us neighbors then?"
"Indeed." Rowan nodded gruffly. "If you'll excuse me, I must prepare for the showcase. Excuse me."
Birch nodded, he too joined Rowan, as a tall man with purpleish hair approached Clayton next.
"Bonjour! I am Professor Sycamore of ze Kalos Region!" Sycamore greeted himself with a slight bow and light French accent. "I am a specialist in ze wonders of Mega Evolutions!"
"M-mega Evolutions?" Clayton asked, curious.
"Why yes, it's a curious phenomenon that occurs with certain Pokemon. If a Trainer's bond with it's Pokemon is strong enough, and it's holding a special stone, ze Pokemon will evolve into a much stronger form, but zis is only temporary. That is as much as I have uncovered. When you are finished in Unova, I invite you to the Kalos region, perhaps you might be able to uncover more about zis while you are there!"
Clayton nodded, walking away, allowing the Professors to prepare. Looking down at his watch, it was nearing noon anyways.
"Out of the way Professors, we have important business here." a thug growled at them, at least a dozen others, along with a man in robes behind him.
Juniper walking over to Clayton from behind, catching him off guard.
"Nice to see you again Clayton, how's Snivy?" Jumper asked, but didn't get an answer.
Glancing up at the knoll, the other Professors stood in fear at the excess of thugs standing before them, all adorned with medieval chainmail costumes.
"What's going on?" she asked, as Clayton tensed, glaring at the oddly dressed individuals.
"Team Plasma has come to ruin the party." Clayton said through gritted teeth.
The Captain's Crew:
Chapter 8: Fate.
Accumula City, known for it's soft, peaceful music, became silent. Tension filled the air as people form all over the town, originally there to visit the Professors' exhibition, stood in awe at the strangely dressed thugs on the grassy knoll.
"You can't be here." Rowan huffed. "This place is allotted to us currently."
"Yeah yeah Gramps." one of the many thugs snarled. "We can do this the easy way, or the harder way."
"That's quite enough." the man in robes placed his hand on the Grunt's shoulder. "We do not wish to instill fear upon these people."
Turning to the crowd, the man in robes glanced upwards. A red lens covered his right eye, the sunlight glimmered off of it. Brushing a bang of his grass green hair aside, his jaw remained rigid and strong.
"I am Ghetsis. I stand before you today to represent Team Plasma. An organization with a mission. Today, I'd like to talk to you about Pokemon Liberation."
"Pokemon Liberation?" someone behind Clayton asked in a whisper.
"It would be no surprise if we had a few of the trainers in this audience, or even the Professors whom stand behind me argue that Pokemon are our partners, our friends." Ghetsis sneered. "I ask you, is this really the truth?! Or is this but a fulfillment of our Human condition to rule and conquer?"
"Maybe this guy is right, I've never thought about it before." someone beside Clayton whispered, causing him to tense further.
"Pokemon have been subjected to the cruel, sadistic command of these so called 'Pokemon Trainers' for far too long! They do all the dirty work in the heat of the battle while their Trainers, their 'Masters', stand on the side-lines, allowing harm to come their way." Ghetsis glared deeply at the Trainer's in the field before him, namely Clayton. "You there! You are a Trainer, are you not?!"
"Yeah, and damn proud of it!" Clayton barked back.
"Then you claim to have a strong bond, a deep caring for your Pokemon's well being? Take that Pokemon on your shoulder, you would do anything in your power to keep him safe?"
"Yeah, especially away from you lying arses!"
"My my, I stand here today as an informant, not some preacher of hubris!" Ghetsis shrugged him off. "So you agree that you'd do anything for it's health. Can you say with confidence that there isn't a lick of truth to what I've been saying."
"Oh there is plenty!" Clayton growled, stepping forward. "Two of your goons hunted down this Pichu's mother and slaughtered her in front of me!"
"Now that's a strong accusation!" Ghetsis took a step backwards. "I don't understand where in the devil you could say such a thing. But I'd be inclined to accept your statement, if you have any sort of proof?"
Clayton grimaced, there was no proof to be shared, and they couldn't take a Pichu's word for it.
"My point is proven. This young man shows that while they care for the well being of their Pokemon, they aren't afraid to throw them under the bus in the hopes of one day having fame and fortune." Ghetsis shook his head. "This is why we must liberate our Pokemon! Then and only then will Pokemon and Humans stand side by side. To be fully equal!"
"So why don't you start the movement?" Clayton asked sarcastically. "If this Liberation of Pokemon is so important, why don't you take any of your Pokemon you have on your person now, and release them to the world?"
"I could ask the same of you, young man." Ghetsis replied with venom. "Whose to say I haven't already-?"
"So you mean to tell me that you released your Pokemon BEFORE you had a public announcement for OTHERS to release theirs? If I were you, and I wanted people to get behind the cause, I would've waited until just now. What you're doing sounds awfully suspicious, perhaps you want to steal people's Pokemon after they release them?"
"Teenagers these days and age are so paranoid over any materialistic thing." Ghetsis chuckled. "You prove a point though, it would have been wise to wait! But, I want you all in the crowd today to at least think about what I've said today. Team Plasma sincerely appreciates your attention."
Backing away, Ghetsis was surrounded by the Plasma Grunts that accompanied him, as they walk off in a marching formation.
"What do you think Hilda?" a voice said from beside him. "I always thought Pokemon and their Trainers got stronger together. I refuse to believe what he said as truth."
"We've only been trainers for like, five minutes Cheren." the woman beside the other voice replied. "I've only had Tepig battle a few times. We can't really say for sure."
"You guys might not be able to, but I can." Clayton approached them. "Listen, I may not have the necessary proof, but that Team Plasma is up to no good."
"You're the one that talked about that Pichu's mother dying." the one called Cheren replied.
"That's so awful." Hilda frowned, especially after glancing at Bolt himself. "I'm Hilda, and this is Cheren. We come from Nuvema town."
"I'm Clayton, I come from Mistralton." Clayton nodded. "Nice to meet you."
"Wow," Cheren replied, pushing his glasses up. "You've come a long way, you got any badges?"
"Well, not yet. But I'm going to attempt the Straiton Gym again. Take my advice, train your Pokes' up, they choose whichever type is better than your Starter, assuming you have a Starter." Clayton shook his head.
"Well I started with Tepig." Hilda replied, releasing the tiny fiery pig onto the ground by her feet.
"-and I started with Oshawott." Cheren replied, indicating to the shy otter at his feet.
"Come out from back there Tom." the Tepig sighed. "The mouse isn't going to hurt you."
"Easy for you to say Ashe," Tom the Oshawott shook his head. "You don't suffer from a weakness to electricity!"
The three Trainers smiled at the Pokemon's interactions with each other, as Cheren and Hilda looked over towards Clayton.
"Pichu is your Starter?" Hilda asked.
"Technically speaking, yes," Clayton nodded. "But Snivy was the one Professor Juniper gave me!"
Producing Sebastian's ball from his belt, he unleashed the Servine, who stood taller than the Pokemon already there.
"Leafy?!" Ashe asked.
"What?!" Sebastian shuddered at the fiery pig. "Clayton, who is this?"
Waddling over towards Ashe and Tome, he sniffed them, unable to recognize them.
"Wait, if you aren't Leafy, then who are you? You ARE one of Juniper's handouts, aren't you?" Tom crossed his arms with a quizzical look.
"Well yes," Sebastian replied. "But I'm not YOUR Snivy. I was from a different batch. It was Paul the Tepig and Wally the Oshawott."
"Oh, so you're Paul's ol' pal. Y'know, he's the only one that hasn't been chosen yet." Ashe replied.
"That's a shame." Sebastian frowned. "With Clayton over here, I've already evolved, and I've only been with him for a couple of days now."
Their conversation, however, was interrupted by a ringing over on the grassy knoll. Pokemon and people alike turned to face Professor Oak, who stood before them with a proud smile on his face.
"Thank you all for coming, I would like to apologize for the sudden interruption of Team Plasma. The Professor's exhibition is now open! If my colleagues will please show the crowd their showcase Pokemon?"
Within seconds, the grassy knoll was covered with six groups of three Pokemon each, totaling out eighteen separate Starter Pokemon from all known regions around the world. All of them seemed so eager and energetic to be taken as a lucky Trainer's Starter.
"Now before we continue with our scheduled events, we, the Pokemon Professors, would like to reward Clayton Connelly for him standing up for Trainer's rights. We would like to offer him not only the first choice from the showcase Pokemon, but offer him a Pokemon so incredibly rare, one out of every thousand Trainers get the privilege of encountering one."
Clayton smiled, as Sebastian walked along beside him, Hilda and Cheren clapping. Clayton trudged up the hill, Professor Oak placing a hand on his shoulder. Handing him a Pokeball, Professor Oak nodded.
"Don't open this one until everyone has dispersed." Oak winked. "I'm sure he'll be a powerful member of your team."
"Now then," Oak grinned, facing the crowd. "We have my trio; Charmander, Squirtle, and Bulbasaur. Elm's choices of; Cyndaquil, Totodile, and Chikorita. Birch's; Torchic, Mudkip, and Treekco. Rowan's; Chimchar, Piplup, and Turtwig. Juniper's; Tepig, Oshawott, and Snivy. Or Sycamore's; Fennekin, Froakie, or Chespin. Go ahead and make your choice, Clayton."
Clayton nodded, while all of the Starters looked so energetic and with great potential, he really needed a water type, and he had a feeling the Pokemon Oak had given him was most likely to be something else. Narrowing his choices down, he could either pick Squirtle, Totodile, Mudkip, Piplup, or Froakie.
As much as he liked Oshawott, he wanted to try something foreign, and he already had Sebastian as his Unovan Starter. Squirtle looked awfully strong, but with that cumbersome shell on his back, Clayton feared he might have the bang, but not the speed to pull it off effectively. Totodile was likely that female one that Elm had witness his defeat against Chili. She seemed to be a strong Pokemon, and he doubted she would actually be quite as cumbersome.
Mudkip, while he never did anything wrong, just didn't appeal to Clayton, as if some outside force caused him to dislike Mudkip. Piplup seemed awfully full of itself, so it probably boasted quite often, and while that might be a good thing, it could also prove to bite him. Then he glanced over the Froakie, which lazed in the Unovan sun. He looked swift, just from first glance, but Clayton wasn't sure if he would be a strong enough water type.
He stood there, carefully thinking over his decision. Finally, he approached Professor Elm, who smiled with delight.
"I'd like Totodile." Clayton replied proudly, as the crocodile at his feet squirmed with delight.
"Omigosh! You have no idea how much this means to me mate!" she stood proudly. "This Shiela'll make you proud, I swear!"
"Seems like she has no problem with that." Elm replied, rubbing the back of his balding scalp.
"Thank you." Elm whispered in his ear. "I know you can take good care of her."
Handing Clayton her Pokeball, the Totodile started dancing with delight around Clayton's legs.
"The decision has been made, once again, thank you Clayton." Oak nodded. "Now then, the Exhibition can officially begin. Beginning Trainers, please approach to choose yourselves a Starter. We ask if you've already gotten one to wait for those that haven't."
Clayton started down the hill, as he turned towards the Totodile, whom had been riding on Servine's back.
"I'm going to name you Sheila." Clayton grinned. "I never knew you had an Australian accent?"
"Only when I'm excited." Sheila grinned a toothy grin.
"How clever." Sebastian huffed. "Y' give me a Scottish name 'cause I got a Scottish accent. This isn't gonna be a trend, is it?"
"Actually, I named you Sebastian because I thought it was cool and noble, like you act." Clayton shook his head with a chuckle. "Coincidentally it's a Scottish name."
Walking their way back to Hilda and Cheren, Clayton knew they'd have to wait for their second Starter for a while, deciding to show them Sheila. Suddenly, a hand was placed on Clayton's left shoulder, causing him to jump momentarily.
"Excuse me." a unfamiliar voice stated behind him. "I heard your Pokemon just now."
"What?" Cheren shook his head, dumbfounded. "You heard his Pokemon?"
"Yes." the green haired young man replied with a curt nod. "I heard all of your Pokemon after that organization got finished with their speech."
"Pokemon make noise." Hilda replied sarcastically. "It's natural."
"No, they were talking." he shook his head. "A shame, the three of you must not have heard them. Where are my manners, I am N."
"Hi N." Clayton replied finally. "Mind getting your hand off of my shoulder before I break it?"
"You were the one that stood up for your Pokemon and your rights as a Trainer. Respectable, but I saw you conversing with them at a earlier point of time. Your Pokemon, strangely they think very highly of you."
"Yeah, because I show them love and compassion. Even when they are locked in a heated battle, I feel their pain along with them on a symbiotic level. If my Pokemon is hit with fire, I can feel the heat, the sting, the burn it carries with it. That is what it means to be a Trainer."
"A just point of view. While it is an odd request, I wonder if I might ask to speak to your Pokemon?"
"You're on!" Clayton replied, as N released two Pokemon at once, a Pidove, and a cat.
Pulling out his Pokedex, Clayton pointed it at the purple colored cat, who licked it's paw, grooming it's face.
"Purrloin, the Devious Pokemon. Purrloin's cute act is a ruse. Purrloin trick people and steal their valuables just to see the looks on their faces." Dex stated.
"A double battle hmm?" Clayton asked.
"Let me help." Hilda stepped forward. "Tepig and I need this."
Nodding, Clayton pointed Sheila forward, as she danced her way to the makeshift battlefield, Ashe right behind her.
"Ember Tepig!" Hilda called. "Take that Pidove out of the skies!"
"Water Gun Sheila!" Clayton followed up.
"Pidove, Leer. Purrloin, Fakeout." N replied nonchalantly.
Ashe formed a small ball of fire in her mouth, aiming for the bird looming over head. Getting a glimpse of the menacing stare the bird gave her, her resolve slowly faded away, as fear settled it. Regardless of her intimidation from the bird, she fired the plume of fire, smashing the bird in it's fragile chest.
The bird nose dived towards the ground, it's burning feathers leaving a trail of smoke in it's wake. Purrloin, however, took it's chance to sneak up behind the Tepig, smashing her on the back of the head. The unsuspected attack caused the pig to panic, as she tried to struggle out of the dirt.
Sheila responded in kind with a point blank Water Gun, the forceful jet of water causing the small cat to bounce along the ground and into the distant tree. It's eyes rolled for a moment after it's tumble, rushing back in for a second helping.
"Tail Whip Tepig! Hilda barked.
"My name is Ashe!" the pig squealed from the field.
"Interesting, apparently it has a name of it's own." N replied.
"Yeah, her name's Ashe." Clayton turned to his team-mate.
"How'd you, what?"
"Later, for right now, you deal with the cat, I'll get the Pidove!" Clayton grit his teeth. "Water Gun, follow it up with Bite!"
Sheila nodded in response, pointing her jet at her feet, launching herself into the air. The Pidove, completely taken by surprise, flew right into the Crocodile's maw, as she clamped down on the bird. No matter how much the bird tried to struggle, it couldn't budge the Totodile's clamp, and cooed in defeat.
Falling back down to Earth, Sheila released the unconscious bird, spraying a jet of water at the ground to slow her descent. Meanwhile, Ashe charged at the Purrloin, her body encased with fire. With each strike of her hooves, she found that it got easier and easier to run faster. Determined, she smashed into the side of the cat, warranting a yowl of pain for the kitty caper.
N sighed as he returned both of his Pokemon to their respective balls, glancing at Hilda. Silently pleading her to leave him and Clayton in private.
"So, I am not the only one then?" N asked with a smug grin. "There is one other that can speak to Pokemon, I am not alone!"
"Perhaps on that, we share something. Besides that though, we are nothing alike." Clayton growled. "Yes, Pokemon get hurt in battle. But it's the Trainer's job to also give them proper treatment afterwards. Besides, not every Trainer battles, some people have them help them with their hobbies, things around the house, or keep them as pets."
"As long as Pokemon are confined in the prisons we call Pokeballs, they will never become the perfect beings they are meant to be." N shook his head. "In time, I will teach this to you, fellow Poke-Speaker. This I swear. I will change this world, because Pokemon are my friends."
"Yeah, have fun with that, fruit cake." Clayton pat N on the shoulder, walking back over to Hilda and Cheren.
"So, what were you saying about Tepig?" Hilda asked, curious.
Clayton sighed, perhaps what Skyla had said the day before was true. N was on terms that he could talk to Pokemon. People gave him weird looks, as was evident by Hilda and Cheren's reactions, but besides that; he was fine with himself."
"I can talk to Pokemon, much like our jolly green-haired basket case over there." Clayton replied. "But at least I use my ability to bond with my Pokemon, not use it to convince people to release their Pokemon."
"Really?" Hilda replied, a twinkle in her eyes, as Cheren just pushed his glasses up his nose.
"Yes really." Clayton sighed. "Yes, I will talk to them for a moment, ask them something and I'll tell you what they say."
"You seem... embarrassed by this." Professor Juniper replied, walking over. "Sorry for intruding, I only just caught what you just said. It really isn't something to be ashamed of, Clayton."
"I'm not ashamed," Clayton shook his head. "It's just always the same thing whenever I tell someone about it, they ALWAYS get that look in their eye. Not that I don't mind helping or anything, it just get's really old."
Hilda nodded respectfully, as her and Cheren backed away. Clayton shook his head.
"That doesn't mean I won't do it for you guys, I just... y'know. People need to be more considerate. Otherwise people will only view me as the Caesar Malon of the Pokemon world." Clayton shrugged. "I want people to know me as a Trainer, or hang with me for me."
"I understand." Juniper nodded. " I came over to thank you once again for putting Ghetsis in his place. You and I both remember what those two Grunts did with those Patrats. I just, I didn't speak up because I was afraid it might happen with us Professor's Starters. But you stood up for what you believe in, and actually caused him to crack."
"Hey Tom, it's the Professor! Hiya Professor!" Ashe squealed, bouncing her way over towards the Professor.
"She says 'Hi Professor'." Clayton chuckled. "But you kinda already knew that."
"Hey! Tell my Trainer to lay off of the Oran Berries!" Tom replied, tugging Cheren's pants. "They might give me extra energy in a pinch, but the sweetness numbs my brain."
"Tom says to lay off the berries Cheren. They're doing more harm than good."
Hilda, Cheren, and Juniper were taken aback by this, as they all stared down at the Oshawott, who nodded his approval.
"That is simply amazing." Juniper smiled. "I'm not saying let the whole world know though, just keep in mind that some people have always wondered, or even wanted, to know what their Pokemon were saying. You've known for probably your entire life, so this doesn't occur to you. It isn't to be ashamed of."
"Thanks." Clayton nodded. "-And say farewell to Professor Elm for me, and thanks for Sheila and my tab. I'm going to go take on the Gym."
Juniper nodded, as she waved to Elm, who looked over sheepishly. Nodding, he scurried over as quickly as he could, holding a hand out to Clayton.
"Or that works." Clayton nodded, accepting the handshake. "Thanks again for Sheila and covering my bill this morning."
"No, thank you Mr. Connolly. You not only escorted me, when you didn't even need to. But you showed these new Trainers what it means to be a Trainer, and to not doubt themselves. I owe you way more than I have already given you. Best of luck on your Journey, and if you are every around in Johto, my lab is in New Bark Town."
"I'll definitely be sure to stop by." Clayton nodded, turning finally to Cheren and Hilda. "Best of luck to you guys as well, I'm sure we might encounter each other again."
With that, Clayton returned Sebastian and Sheila to their respective Pokeballs, heading back into Route 2. Pausing right at the exit of the route, he recalled the special gift Professor Oak had given him. Producing his fourth team member's Pokeball from his pocket, he pondered what Pokemon awaited him inside.
Tossing the ball towards the tall grass, he covered his eyes from the blinding light that emerged. Peeking through a crack in his fingers, he made out the form of a tiny lizard with a small ball of fire on the tip of it's tail.
Mouth open with awe, Clayton collapsed to his knees at the sight of his new, fire-type lizard. It's scales reflecting the sun's rays no longer affecting his vision.
"Take a picture, it lasts longer." the creature replied. "Or do I have to say 'Char, Charmander'? Arceus, all you humans are the same-"
"Not me." Clayton replied. "You're a Charmander, but your scales are golden."
"Well I'll be confused for several key moments in a battle, a Human that actually understands me. That's just about as rare as, well, me!" the Charmander replied. "I'm a Shiny Pokemon. It's a rare genetic thing that makes us Pokemon look different than our other Pokemon. Professor Oak said he was keeping me for a special Trainer. Looks like I'm your man- er, lizard."
"Do you have a name, or should I assign you one?"
"Man, I've long since forgotten what my mother called me. I guess you can name me, if you want."
"I want to say Midas. But I can't be sure if you'd remain gold for the remainder of your evolutionary line."
"Yeah, and that'd be a total cliche, don't be a douche." the Charmander shrugged. "Same goes for Flint, Ember, or any variations of the sort."
"Drake?" Bolt asked, speaking for the first time that day.
"Well, it's good to know I'm not that only Kanto Pokemon here." Charmander smiled a toothy grin. "Drake's a good name, but I don't think I like it."
"What about Hephaetus?"
"Yeah no." Charmander replied. "I don't even know how that connects to me?"
"Ash?" Clayton shrugged.
"Yeah, then I'd sound like some dweeb who can't even win anything for himself, pass."
"Fine. This is the last suggestion," Clayton shook his head. "Lance."
"Cliche, but it's a whole lot better than Drake or Flint." Charmander replied. "I like it."
Nodding, Clayton stood a beaming smile on his face.
"Welcome to the team, Lance. I'll have to properly introduce you to the others later, for now, I've got a Gym battle coming up in a couple hours. I'm going to need to really prepare for this."
The Captain's Crew: