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And it may have something to do with my impatience. Probably majority impatience... meh. Either way, a helluva lot earlier than planned, here comes...
The Rebirth of Sinnoh
Chapter 0: Prologue
Slowly, quietly, the raindrops echoed off the roof of the tiny shack, running down into the gutter and eventually returning to Earth. Earth was a place that the boy resented right now, as he sat up in his room, watching the rain from the dirty window.
Volkner Sune was fourteen years old. He stood at roughly five feet, probably a bit taller, but he wasn't sure by how much. Dirty blonde hair rested atop his head, keeping him the consistent target of teasing because of its resemblance of urine – at least the normally colored stuff. His torso was thin and bony, despite his rather heavy eating habits, which he was admittedly grateful for.
Today was a bad day for him. It was a bad day for the dreary Olivine City, it seemed, too: heavy rain, strikes of lightning and empty streets were all he saw throughout the day. Of course, this was the perfect environment for Volkner. He hated people. Dots of life bustling through the streets, going about their happy little lives... it sickened him. How could people be happy? How could people be happy when he couldn't be?
He sighed, sitting up from his laying position on his bed. His hands fished around in his pockets for the phone that rested in one of them – finally, his fingers gripped the cold surface of the tiny mechanical device, and he flipped it open, heading to his contacts list and pressing the “OK” button on a certain one. This was another thing Volkner hated. His economic status: his mother was poor. His father wasn't, but it wasn't like his father to support him anyway. So he was stuck with the most basic phone his mother could afford, a flip-phone with basic tools and calling functions. The damned thing didn't even have a camera.
“Hello?” a voice said on the other end. He could identify the timid tone immediately.
“It's a crappy day, Jasmine,” he muttered.
“...I'm sorry to hear that.”
Poor Jasmine Steele, he mused. Chose to make buddy-buddy with the wrong person. She was his ranting bag – nothing else, really. He supposed he would ask her about her day. Maybe someone else's problems would take his mind off of his own.
“Your own?” he asked.
“It's been alright. I got my first Pokemon today,” she said.
“...Oh? What was it?”
“She,” Jasmine started, “is a Onix.”
“God damn!” Volkner whispered. “Don't you think that's a bit extreme? That thing could rip you in two.”
Volkner heard a faint giggle, only further engaging his curiousity. “Rustina is my father's. He's domesticated just fine: a three year old could handle this gentle little giant...”
“...I'm jealous. I want something like that,” Volkner admitted.
“Don't you have Chuseph-” Jasmine started.
“I don't care about Chuseph. He's weak. An Onix is strong,” Volkner said, a bit too forcefully for his own liking: and from what he could tell, not too much to Jasmine's liking either, due to the thin gasp on the other end of the line.
Once again, she got interrupted. “The truth.”
Volkner angrily removed the phone from near his ear and let it slam shut, automatically ending the phone call. He fell back onto the pillow, taking in its soft comfort, and grunted. Stupid woman. How was it she got the good thing? Chuseph should have been hers, and this “Rustina” thing should have been his. After all, she liked cutsie things, didn't she? It made sense!
Spitefully, he buried the phone beneath the pillow, closed his eyes and let himself drift off into the much preferable world of a dreamless sleep.
Two days later, things really were not all that different. But today... today, Volkner had a reason to get out of bed, go to school and come home. Today would be the day he would get out of this mess.
So he did. He got out of bed and went off to school, coming home and staying up in his room for a little while to build up the courage. Finally, he left his room and headed downstairs, sitting down in the living room across from his mother, who was sitting back and watching some bullcrap on their rickety old television.
“...Evenin', mom,” Volkner said.
“'lo there, boy,” Hannah Sune said absentmindedly.
“How are you?”
“Just fine,” she said. “You need somethin'?”
“I wanted to ask a question..”
“Then ask it.” She raised an eyebrow. “Ain't I taught ya that when something is on your mind, get it out?”
“...Right,” Volkner said. “I don't think it's any secret that I don't like Olivine City.”
“It's the best place ya got, kiddo,” she responded.
“Not if I leave.”
“A fourteen year old boy, leaving home? That's ridiculous, Volkner, and you know it.”
“People do it younger,” Volkner said.
“Pokemon Trainers?” A glint in his mother's eyes. He knew he had struck a nerve.
“I want to become one.”
“No. You're staying here, like a normal kid.”
Just then, Volkner was startled as the infamous tiny yellow mouse jumped onto his shoulder: Chuseph the Pichu, resting upon his shoulder, enjoying the comfortable fabric of his blue jacket. He added in his little part to the oncoming argument. “Chu!”
His mother continued. “Normal kids stay at home, grow old doing things like business and get married to a nice girl.”
Volkner stood up. “But mom, I ain't a normal kid!”
Volkner wanted to leave Olivine more than anything in the world: and his conversation with Jasmine Steele had given him the idea on how to do it.
“Volkner, give me Chuseph. I'm-”
“Chuseph? Really, mom? Giving him such a human name... he's not human. Not even remotely close! They're so much less than us. Learn your place in the world and learn his!”
“...I'm groundin' you 'til you get this idea out of your head, boy. Pokemon Training is sick and wrong. How dare you even think of pitting these poor creatures up against each other in sport?! They could get seriously injured!”
“Like it really matters?” Volkner spat.
He could see his mother's face turn red, and he could not help but smile.
“You can't blame an entire race for one's stupidity, Volkner,” she said. “That's like blaming the entire human race for a bank robbery.”
“Watch me,” Volkner whispered, then shook his entire body: he felt the light grip that the tiny mouse Pokemon had on his shoulder falter, and with another shake, the mouse was sent sprawling toward the big bad wooden floor.
One ***** in his plan, though. He hadn't thought everything through entirely: he had forgotten about the small yellow and brown creature by his mother's side, the tips of its beast-like fingers curling out and glowing red, sending a similar aura to Chuseph's body. It enveloped the mouse, and brought him down safely onto the floor next to the Abra.
“...Your sentence has been extended,” his mother said after a few moments of awestruck silence. “You're not to leave your room unless you are coming down for one of the scheduled three meals, using the restroom, or going to school. No friends-”
Volkner stopped listening for a moment to think, “What friends?”
“...and no video games. If you apologize to Chuseph, I'll give you a regular sentence. Otherwise, this is 'til you leave my house for a place of your own.”
“Your sentence. Up to your room. Now.”
Volkner glared at her spitefully, and only because he knew he had been beaten. He had no counter argument. He only knew he could show his butt a little more and hopefully upset his mother some. Served her right. As he ran past her, he said the words he knew any mother dreaded to hear: a combination of three words reserved only for inflicting maximum emotional pain.
“I hate you.”
Up the stairs he went, curving around the hallway and flying into his room, the door slamming shut behind him. He flung himself onto his bed and buried his face in his pillow, letting out a choked cry. He had just had his one chance to get out of here destroyed: he was too smart to try and sneak off. He knew that f he did, h would be reported as a missing child, and everyone in Johto would be looking for him. And that put him right back at square one.. He hated this place. He hated his mother. He hated the world.
“What's wrong, Volkner?”
Volkner inhaled sharply, forcing himself to sit up and identify the source of this voice – it sounded sweet, almost melodic to his ears. He looked around for a moment or two through blurry eyes, before catching the source.
She sat on his windowsill, wearing a long white dress that covered even down to her feet. It was sleeveless, revealing pale, thin arms. Her face was gorgeous: the very sight of her seemed to make his worries go away for just a moment, before woefully returning. Her black hair went down to her shoulders.
“Who are you?...” Volkner whispered.
“A friend,” the girl said simply.
“But I've never seen you before in my life,” Volkner responded after a few moments.
“So? I'm still your friend, Volk.”
His heart skipped a beat. Not a soul had called him that- not since--
“So, once again – something wrong, Volk? You seem pretty upset.”
“Tell me who you are.”
“I told you – a friend. If you really want a specific name... well, you can call me Mana.” A smile crossed her lips. “It really is nice to see you, Volk.”
“How do you know my name? How did you get in here?” Volkner demanded, his hands clenching into fists. He was about to punch this girl: her cryptic, dodgy answers were getting on his last nerve.
“I know your name because I know it. I got in here through the window. Should really get locks for these sorts of things.”
She giggled, making Volkner flinch.
“Shhh, Volk. Listen up, now. I've got a favor to ask of you.”
“I'm not doin' any-”
She leaped off the windowsill, walking slowly in his direction. He pulled backward, going up against the headboard of the bed, pressing himself flat until she sat down almost next to him, leaning in and giving him a simple kiss on the cheek.
“...I've missed you, Volk. Thank God for this opportunity. But I've got to... I've got to send you away for a little while. See ya later, 'gator.”
And with that, Volkner looked up and saw a flash of green and pink light, swirled together: then it disappeared, replaced only with darkness, the sweet darkness of unconsciousness.
Volkner Sune heard one last thing.
We will do you a great favor, child...
...Just as long as you do us one first.
Thanks to ShinySandshrew of serebiiforums for the banner!
Also, folks, don't expect chapters to normally come up this quickly. I just happened to be about halfway done, and got it completed this morning. Chapters will be released on a "whenever the hell I'm done with 'em" basis instead of a schedule.
Rebirth of Sinnoh
Chapter One: Stranger in a Strange Land
“Just so you know, it's kinda annoyin' when ya try'n push me like this,” the girl said, running her hand over her forehead to push strands of caramel brown hair away from her face.
“Oh, is that so? Well, then, remind me to try harder. 'Kinda annoyin'' is far from what I'm going for.” A smile crossed the older woman's lips: the younger one couldn't help but smile as well.
“Lily, I'm not goin' in that place,” the younger one said.
“Gardenia, you're never going to get over your fears if you don't,” Lily Florence said.
Gardenia Florence shook her head. “Sucks fer me then.”
Lily Florence sighed, placing her hands on her hips. “You're a stubborn arse, Gardenia.”
Gardenia offered a sly grin, different from the shy smile she wore seconds before. “Where'd'ya think I get it from?”
“...Touche, little girl. Touche. Anyways, I want you in that place by sometime tonight. Don't matter to me when. Bring back an Old Gateau – one I placed inside, lil' Missy, so don't get any funny ideas. I know what it looks like – as proof that you were there.”
“Don't Lily me, Gardenia. This is an order from Gym Leader Lily, not mom Lily or friendly Lily,” Lily said, hands on her hips, a stern look in her blue eyes. Gardenia's own green ones met them, and she knew immediately that it would be stupid to deny her any longer.
“...Yes ma'am. But if they find my body there...”
“I'll take full blame,” Lily said with a smirk.
“You 'd better!”
Gardenia Florence was, quite frankly, scared ****less. Her one totally debilitating phobia, and of course her dear, sweet mother was going to mak her face it right in the eye. The Old Chateau was a building just less than a mile west of Eterna City, well within walking distance, that had a legend to it.
Long ago, it was said that the rich folks who lived there invited some other rich folks over for dinner. Of course, some variations of the legend said that was a literal interpretation. As in, they ate them. But the interpretation Gardenia believed was that the jealous butler, jealous of their riches and his forced servitude toward them, poisoned them: all of them, and then killed himself out of guilt. The spirits of the two families were supposed to be haunting the place to this day.
That was her fear. Her one and only phobia in which she truly could not face: ghosts.
“A beautiful young lady such as yourself traversing the roads alone? O, the humanity of it all!”
She recognized the voice, and turned to confirm her suspicions. The man she saw had both of his hands resting atop his brown-haired head, a sly grin on his face. Dressed in his usual white t-shirt and jean shorts, Willow Bryant looked as much like a kid, despite his five or six years senority to her, as ever.
“Will, I suggest ya be quiet,” she said.
“I will be as loud as I wish, m'lady. Just as long as you fight me about it.” A grin crossed the young man's lips.
“What're ya botherin' me for?” Gardenia asked.
“Lily asked me to join you for your ghost huntin' exploration,” he responded.
“...Don't put it that way,” Gardenia deadpanned.
Will locked his hands behind his head, beginning to walk forward, and Gardenia continued on her way as to keep the lead. “Well, then, m'lady. Shall we go?”
“...Well, there're these big bushes in our way. And the fence is too tall... L-looks like we ain't gonna be able to m-muh-make it,” Gardenia said nervously, turning and beginning to walk the opposite direction.
“Hey, hey! I've seen you do more strenuous things than climb over a fence, Gardenia! Get'cher pretty behind back here.”
Willow Bryant grinned from ear to ear, trying to make it as clear as possible that he was loving this chance to torture his childhood friend.
“...Damn it, Willow, I'm-”
“Scared?” His expression went from goofy to serious with the blink of an eye. If all-about-appearances Gardenia was willing to admit that...
“...Yes,” Gardenia whispered.
Willow smiled softly, extending a hand. “Ghosts ain't gonna harm you, Gardenia. Especially with me around. Now c'mon. Let's go get rid of this fear.”
Gardenia stood silently for a few moments, a look in her eyes as if pondering whether or not to accept. Willow was patient, and after a while, she took his hand and nodded once, weakly.
The two of them made a quick hop over the short fence that surrounded the building, and began to walk forth.
The Old Chateau could only be called small by a blind man. It stood looming above the trees of the forest, in turn leaving humans as little more than dwarves. It was painted a dark black on the actual home, while the roof was instead opted to be unpainted, leaving it a bright shade of brown. In the black paint, sections of it had started to chip off, giving the walls a sort of polka dotted brown-black scheme.
Inside, things were different, Gardenia mused. From what she could see, everything inside was more of a dark brown color, even the floor tiling. Key phrase being, “from what she could see”. Since the home was pretty old, it held no working electricity, so sight in itself was very difficult. Willow's eyes were more efficient in darkness, she realized suddenly – that was why Lily had sent him.
“Let's get some explorin' done, eh, Gardie? It's got to be interesting, this old place.”
“...Y-yep,” she murmured.
He winked in her direction, and the two continued forth. The design so far was pretty simple: two staircases, one leading left and the other leading right, a door right in front of them and a statue on the left of the door. As they passed, Gardenia got a sudden chill down her spine, her muscles locking up.
“...Will, I can't shake the f-feelin' somethin' is watchin' us,” she whispered.
“Probably is,” he said. Gardenia felt her heart rise into her throat. “An old place like this is bound to attract Pokemon. It's 'prolly a Bidoof.”
“You scared me!”
“Didn't mean 'ta, believe it or not, m'lady,” Will said, a comforting smile still on his face.
“...I don't believe ya. But I'll kill ya later. Let's get this done and over with.”
The two continued to walk through, finding themselves in a kitchen – a big one. But something seemed off here as well, something Gardenia could not quite manage to put her finger on. In the center of the room was a long, but narrow table still dressed in a table cloth, an assortment of rusted silver dishes placed on top.
“Wow... think these things would be worth anything?” Will mused.
Gardenia slowly shook her head. “With all that rust? They're pretty much t-trash..”
“Touche. How about under the tables, though? Why don'tcha check?”
Gardenia lifted up the drooping table cloth, fell flat onto her backside and shrieked in terror. Looking at her were a pair of human eyes.
“****! Gardie, you scared me for a second. You okay?”
Will knelt in front of the table, lifting up the cloth. She saw him visibly shudder, reach down beneath, moments later looking at her, his eyes wide, his face pale.
“...G-...Gardie. Listen up. W-..we... we need to be calm. This guy... he's- he's still alive. Here's the p-puh-puh-...plan... you have your phone with you?”
Gardenia reached into her pockets with shaky hands, pulling out her phone.
“Call a medical u-unit... tell 'em to meet us outside of Eterna Forest. Let's get movin',” Willow whispered.
Gardenia did so, and the two mobilized. But before they left, Gardenia noticed a small object on the floor that rolled out when Willow pulled this yellow-haired guy out. A Pokeball, she realized: quickly, she grabbed it and stuffed it in her pocket, before going after Will.
Volkner Sune felt little more than the steady thumping of his heart, and heard nothing other than a rythmic beeping sound. A heart monitor, he realized after a few moments of silent contemplation. His own? Possibly.
Eyes peeled open to a steady stream of filtered light, various images and shapes forming before him, but none of them were comprehensible. Sounds entered his ears, new ones, fresher ones, but he could not identify them.
A thick, country accent. Where was he? No one at home had this kind of accent. And... nurse?
“...Where am I?” he managed to choke out.
An unfamiliar face looked down to him: a woman's. Thin nose, green eyes and caramel brown hair, blocked from inconvenient eye-contact by a black headband. “Yo. Welcome back to Sinnoh, bud.”
“...Sinnoh?” The name sounded unfamiliar.
“Right. Eterna City, if ya wanna be specific. But that don't matter. How're ya feelin'?” she asked.
“That so? You ain't got amnesia or whatever, do ya?”
“...I don't think I do,” Volkner said. In all honesty, he wasn't too sure.
“You don't think? What's yer name?” the girl asked.
“Well, at least there's that. Where ya from?”
“Oliv-” He stopped for a moment, wondering if it was a good idea to tell her this. None of this world sounded familiar. The places, the sounds, the people, none of it. After a moment, he simply thought: what the hell? “Olivine City...”
“Here on vacation, then?” she asked, eyebrows raised. “Johto's pretty far away...” Volkner did not respond. He did not need to: after a few moments of silence, she continued. “Anyways, nice to meet'cha, Volkner Sune. Name's Gardenia Florence.”
Volkner nodded slowly. “Sure.”
Suddenly, she drew in a sharp breath, as if just remembering something. She reached into her pocket, pulling out a small red sphere: no, red on the top, white on the bottom. He stared at it for a few moments.
“This thing yours? Found it near ya. Sorry if it's bein' nosy, but your Pichu is absolutely adorable.”
Chuseph, you moron!
“Yep. He's lookin' lively.”
“...Right...thanks... can you leave him on the desk? Then leave? I just... I just wanna sleep...”
“Sure. I'll be back to check up on ya later- or I might send my friend Will. Either way...”
“...Whatever. Just go,” Volkner deadpanned.
“...Okey doke then,” Gardenia murmured, setting the Pokeball on the desk next to his bed, then heading for the door. Volkner shut his eyes and thought simply: what the hell is going on here!?
Author's Note: I realize this is short, by the way. Forgive me for that. But I felt it the perfect place to leave off.
Thanks to ShinySandshrew of serebiiforums for the banner!
Rebirth of Sinnoh
WARNING: Chapter features a scene in which homicide is occurred, and briefly described. If this kind of stuff offends you, forgive me: but it's there.
Chapter 2: Floral Arrangements/Blood in the Streets
Very little truly concerned Volkner Sune, but getting sent half-way across the world without his consent was certainly one of them. He thought about what to do all that night as he lay there in his bed at the hospital, staring up at the plain white ceiling. He did catch a wink of sleep. He did not want to.
Some time after that annoying hick girl left, a nurse came in to explain to him what had happened. He had been found unconscious in some place called the “Old Chateau” close to here. He had been brought into the hospital and examined, and doctors had determined it was nothing more than a case of dehydration, and thus he had been put on an IV and would be staying in the hospital for overnight monitoring.
Volkner was eager to get out. This was certain, but he supposed he could stand the night for some last minute relaxation before things got really hectic: and he had a feeling they would.
~ ~ ~
Gardenia Florence stood in her bedroom, staring at herself in the mirror to check out her appearance for the day: short, caramel-brown hair (“Makes ya sweet,” Willow had once commented), a black crop top covered by a green cape with a x-shape stitched into the center, and a pair of khaki shorts. She brushed a few loose strands of hair from her eyes and nodded, satisfied. For an eleven year old, she looked pretty good.
She removed her neck from the odd position it was in, removing the phone it held in position and instead pressing it to her ear with her hand. “Alright, Will. Meet'cha at the hospital, then?”
Willow's voice on the other side gave a simple, “M'hm,” before a “click”. Gardenia stuffed her phone into her pocket, then turned toward her bedroom door and walked off.
~ ~ ~
“Now you be careful, ya hear?”
Volkner stood up and stretched off his tiredness, nodding toward the nurse. It was his release day, and he decided he would get out as soon as they would let him. He stood with some confidence now, having thought the entire night. He had come up with a plan. “Sure will, ma'am.”
The nurse smiled and nodded, trotting off to take care of other patients. Overly happy woman, Volkner thought of her. Annoyingly perky. He walked over to the desk placed next to his bed, picking up the small sphere on top and clipping it to the belt the nurse had given him as a gift. Annoying, but a tad bit useful, he supposed.
Just as he turned toward the door, two faces met his sight: the hick girl opened the door, her small stature right next to one of more comparable size to Volkner – some surfer-esque boy with his hands locked behind his head, trotting on into the room.
“'sup, Sune?” the surfer asked.
Volkner assumed hick-girl had told him his name. That was fine, but who the hell was he?
“...'sup,” Volkner responded.
“Looks like yer feelin' better,” hick-girl said. What the hell was her name again? He racked his mind for the memory, but it slipped past him.
Volkner slid his hand down his face, applying a small pressure to force himself into a higher awareness. He realized he had actually been dozing off.
“Somewhat,” Volkner said, “but the doctor said I'm free to go, so I'm going.”
“Oh? Where 'ta?”
Volkner figured he may as well be honest. “I dunno yet.”
Surfer raised an eyebrow. “You don't know where you can go?”
Volkner shook his head. “Not a clue.”
“Well, then you can come stay in the gym with us, eh?” he said. “I'm sure ol' Lily won't mind it, eh, Gardie?”
Gardie... Gardie- Gardenia! That's it.
Gardenia nodded. “I s'pose I can pull a few strings for ya, stranger.” She winked. “As long as ya pull yer fair share.”
“Gym?” Volkner asked. “As in, Pokemon Gym?”
“Uh-huh,” she said. “My ma's Lily Florence, the local gym leader! That's right – you're a trainer, aren'tcha? That's what the Pichu's for, am'a right?”
“Sure,” Volkner said. “I'll stay for a while...”
He grinned slightly, giving the others an interpretation of an accepting attitude. It was closer to a maniacal grin: everything was falling into place.
Surfer extended his hand, and Volkner grabbed it, shaking it. “Name's Willow Bryant, but Gardie 'prolly told you that already. You can call me Will for short.”
“Volkner Sune – but Gardenia's 'prolly told you that already. You can call me Volkner for short.”
Will let loose a genuine sound of amusement, before turning around and throwing an arm around the girl beside him. He threw a glance over his shoulder, winking at Volkner.
“Okay then, Volkner. Let's go.”
~ ~ ~
The Eterna City Gym was awe inspiring. At least, from the inside: outside, it was a plain, brown building with a tad bit of height to it compared to most other buildings. The inside was much more amusing.
Volkner stood and examined it all for a moment: he glanced up and realized he was not able to see the ceiling because of the massive canopy of treetops above. A variety of squirming things rested amongst the trees, things like Tangela vines, Carnivine jumping and swinging, and of course your obligatory Hoppip floating around the room. This was truly a haven for grass-types.
It sickened Volkner.
The three of them cut through the inside of the gym, eventually finding Lily Florence standing on her own near a window, looking outside into the city. At the sound of their footsteps, the gym leader turned around and smiled.
“Gardenia, Will- you're here early,” she said, her eyes then floating over to Volkner. She stuck her hands down into the pockets of her khaki slacks. “And I see you brought a friend.”
Gardenia did a small nod toward Volkner, giving him the okay to introduce himself. He scoffed; like he needed her permission. He would extend his hand to the woman, trying to be as polite as possible, despite how much he wanted to get to the point. “Volkner Sune.”
She grabbed his hand, shaking it firmly. “Florence. Lily Florence.”
He quickly withdrew it, letting it fall, tense, to his side. “I'm here to ask a favor, if you don't mind it, ma'am.”
Lily raised an eyebrow, but nodded. “Okay. I'm listening.”
“I want a battle.”
Gardenia glanced at him, smiling softly, then moved her gaze over to Willow- then back to Volkner, doing a double-take. “Wait, what-”
Volkner let a soft smile cross his lips. “I want a battle. I've made my decision.”
Lily grinned widely, pearly-white teeth shining through. Volkner stepped back, placing his hand in his pocket and wrapping it around the Pokeball resting in there: he had presumed the answer to be a yes.
“I can tell from looking at you,” Lily said, “that you're a rookie. Only a rookie uses that kind of bluntness. Only a rookie has such a disheveled look. You've probably just gotten through with traveling, right-”
“Ma, this is the kid we found in the Old Chateau...” Gardenia interrupted.
Lily's eyes widened, her jaw going slack for a moment. She followed it through with a quick, nervous laughter. “...Oh. I knew that. Is that really what you want, Volkner?”
So being dropped into another part of the world had its benefits, even if people didn't know about it. He got sympathy. It would work for him, he supposed – he just hoped that Lily Florence wouldn't hold back. “Aye. Don't you dare hold back.”
A legitimate laugh, this time. “Kid, I haven't held back in a match on anyone in fifteen years.” She reached up, swiping a strand of graying hair away from her eyes. “And I don't intend to for the next fifteen.”
A hand went on his shoulders, and Volkner turned to look at its source: Willow Bryant, staring at him in silence for a good few moments, before letting a wide grin spread across his visage. “Good luck.” He chuckled. “You're gonna need it.”
~ ~ ~
The man struggled to keep his balance, his mind forced to work on other problems: such as, the large creature behind him, sliding down the muddy hill with him. The method of escape wasn't the most traditional, but hey... since when was Ian Britani ever the traditional type?
He hit the bottom, leaping up for some extra distance. His feet hit the ground with a wet thud, reddish-orange bangs flipping up and down in front of his eyes. He quickly raised his hand to wipe them away. His feet were on fire, in a more figurative sense: they moved so fast that he almost wondered why friction had not literally set them ablaze. His other hand moved down to his belt, where it closed around the firm golden hilt of his weapon.
“Aye, take this, ya sick beast!” Ian exclaimed, before withdrawing the dagger, its jagged hilt hitting flesh and tearing through with ease. Blood splattered onto his hand, but the young man ignored it for the moment. Another cut, diagonal this time, quickly dispatched of the beast.
The homeless man hit the ground with a thud, whimpering softly. Ian's mind let go of the "man escaping foul beast" scenario, and instead returned him to the reality of things, being the opposite: beast chasing foul man in the streets of the city.
Ian Britani lifted his hand up, licking it clean: blood and all. “Prey number one is down for the count...” He kneeled in front of the crying man, and caused him to scream out in pain as he grabbed him by the hair, lifting his face up into sight.
“I...have... a family... please, no, don't....”
“A family, hrm?” Ian asked, a sort of dullness in his voice.
“...A wife and a little boy... they're... bound to be waiting for me... let me go...”
“Oh? Society's lowest life forms don't deserve it.” Ian quickly jabbed the knife into the man's shoulder. It was as if the young man had a sort of connection to his weapon: he felt the feeling of cutting through flesh, and the bliss that filled his mind was undescribable. His body shook ever so slightly, his muscles tensing. He removed the blade, letting the fresh blood drip off of it, right in front of the man's squinted eyes.
“Every hit I've made so far has gone to your arm,” Ian pointed out after a few moments. “Wonder if I can remove it?”
“Please... n-..no..it hurts...”
Ian cackled loudly. Time to take one more piece of trash off the streets.
Author's Note: Well, another short chapter, but my mind is refusing to put out anything but right now. So sorry this took so long - life has been hectic, and I've been suffering from horrible writer's block. I will admit, this chapter was pretty much forced: if it feels different, that's why.
Anyways, I do feel a good bit was done in this, especially the introduction of (gasp, spoilers) our potential villain here. See you guys soon.
Thanks to ShinySandshrew of serebiiforums for the banner!
Rebirth of Sinnoh
Chapter Three: Problems with results
The wind blew steadily, in through a large, square hole in the roof, creating a tense atmosphere for Volkner Sune to stand in, his eyes narrow, an eager smile on his face. His muscles were firm, locking him in place for the moment, and the look in his eyes meant business.
“So, this'll be a one-on-one battle, then?” Lily Florence asked.
Volkner nodded. “Yeah.”
Standing to his rear were Willow Bryant and Gardenia Florence, both of them having told him they would be at the scene to cheer him on. Of course, he had just gone through with it, not wanting to deal with the sort of stigma that might have come from denying them this, but their presence still mildly annoyed him. He would try to tune them out.
“And you know the rules?”
Volkner shrugged softly. “I think I do.”
“Unfortunately,” she said, making Volkner groan, “thinking you do isn't good enough. I've got to tell you.” She lifted up a single finger. “The Gym Leader is not allowed to rotate Pokemon, while the challenger is. Of course, this doesn't apply with us, but...” A second finger, putting her digits into a peace-sign. “The battle ends at knockout, or if either side forfeits. If a Pokemon is injured to the point of serious risk, this also counts as a knockout, even if the Pokemon is still conscious.” A third finger. “Finally, attacks that could permanently damage the environment are not allowed.”
Volkner knew nothing about this woman's type preferences: though he guessed bug or grass. That seemed a bit unfair, but he wouldn't question it. But apparently, the concrn was evident in his eyes, and the woman clarified.
“That means that, in our grassy environment...” She waved her hand around, pointing to the outside arena they were in, “you can use such attacks as Ember or Flamethrower, but a Fire Blast could annihilate this place. Therefore, Fire Blast is a banned technique. Just for our safety.” She laughed softly. “After all, we wouldn't want to put you in the hospital again, now would we?"
Volkner had to offer a small chuckle at the woman's audacity, but otherwise ignored the commeint in favor of pulling off a small sphere from his belt: red on its top, white on the bottom, his thumb resting on the silvery metallic button in the center.
"Are we going to start or what?"
Lily Florence unhooked a similar ball from her belt, and pressed her arm forward. She pressed her thumb down onto the release switch, and the ball opened, sending forth a flash of white light: Volkner did the same.
Silence for a few moments.
"I see I was right in choosing to go easy on you," Lily said, a slight taunt to her voice. He figured she was lying: after all, she had said just moments
In front of her stood an odd green Pokemon, quadrupedal with a small "necklace" of buds coming from its neck. On top of its head was a thin leaf, waving around lightly. Its small tail thumped the ground excitedly. Volkner could see the happiness in its expression: he scowled.
"Chikorita?" Volkner asked. "A Chikorita isn't anything for me!"
"Then prove me wrong, Pichu boy." Lily offered him a simple wink, before pointing in his direction. "Are we ready to start?"
"Chikorita, start things off with Tackle!"
The small green Pokemon leaped forward on all fours, running in Chuseph's direction. The Pichu's eyes widened, and braced itself for the oncoming attack. Chikorita rammed into him at full force, and the two of them were sent sprawling to the ground. Chikorita got up easily: Chuseph, not so much. It took him a few seconds, but he made it.
"Alright!" Volkner exclaimed. "Chuseph-"
At that moment, he turned to see Gardenia burst out into a fit of raucous laughter.
Volkner frowned, staring at her until she finished her fit of giggles.
"...Is something funny?" he asked.
"Chuseph! Heh..hehe... what kinda name is Chuseph? Hahaha!"
Volkner felt the heat rush to his face. He turned around, focusing his attention back on the battle. "It's my mother's Pokemon, not mine..." he grumbled. "...Anyway. Chuseph-"
A snort. "...use Thundershock!"
Chuseph glanced over to Volkner for a moment, before returning his gaze back to the opposing grass-type. He closed his eyes and began to shiver: moments later, a tiny bolt of electricity shot forward, striking Chikorita dead-on. The Pokemon shivered, but was otherwise unaffected.
"An electric-type move on a grass-type? Don't tell me you don't even know your basic type matchups?"
Volkner had no clue on most of the Pokemon Training basics: he knew the fire-water-grass triad, but nothing else. Grass-types resisted electric-type moves, he noted. "Who says I didn't do that for a reason?"
"Aye, I suppose that's a possibility. But it would be stupid. Does your Pokemon not have any other moves or somethin'?"
Volkner laughed softly in embarrassment. "...I have no idea."
A few moments later, things were starting up again. This time, Volkner had a new guest: a silver bird-like robot, resting upon his shoulder. Its talons were sharp, pinching his skin, and he shifted himself around a bit to loosen that problem.
"MechaStar is built off a Starly," Lily said, "and is meant to guide trainers if they lack basic necessities: certain knowledges, and it even provides a rudimentary battle-dex, which tells you what special techniques your Pokemon is capable of performing. Just say the name of the command to open it."
"Battle-dex," Volkner said, and the Starly beeped and whined for a few moments, before beginning to speak in a loud, obnoxious tone.
"I am MechaStar, model V.345, built for Gym Leader..." Lily's voice piped up. "Lily Florence..." Back to the annoying voice. "Serving function... Battle-dex. Pokemon: Pichu and Chikorita. What Pokemon do you pick?"
"Pichu!" Lily said.
"Pichu knows the following moves: Thundershock, Charm, Thunder Wave, Double Slap, Sweet Kiss and Volt Tackle. Would trainer require an explanation of any of these moves?"
Volkner had heard most of these briefly: but never the last. "Volt Tackle."
"Searching..." A few moments of buzzes and beeps passed by, Volkner's patience thinning. Finally, the odd robotic bird spoke. "Volt Tackle is a technique normally not found on Rai, Pika or Pi-chu in the wild. It is the result of breeding specifically geared toward battle. At the cost of risking their own health, the -chu envelopes themself in electricity, ramming into their opponent and often giving them the shock of their lives. Injuries can-"
Volkner shrugged. "Enough."
The bot was silent. Volkner's mind was in a swirl of thoughts at the moment - Volt Tackle was a move made by those who bred the Pichu for battle. Mother had requested the Pichu bred - he remembered it coming home in an egg. What exactly did this mean? Did his mother request this? Was it bred on without mother's consent?
He shook his head, trying to shrug off the thought. He would worry about it at a later date. "Chuseph, let's go with Double Slap!"
Lily grinned. "Not so fast, kid! Poison Powder, Chikorita!"
This would be a matter of speed, and Volkner knew it. Which would be faster?
Chikorita, or Chuseph?
Chuseph darted forward, trying his best to dodge the various purple spores spread throughout the air, his face ever-so-slightly darker due to the fact that he was holding his breath. Volkner grinned. Smart Pokemon, he had to admit - not entirely useless.
Chikorita seemed to be doing her (Volkner assumed it was female) best to spread the spores however, waving her leaf around and creating a small, but significant enough, wind. The spores began to disperse, covering more distance albeit at the cost of significance in any specific area. Volkner covered his mouth with the collar of his jacket, and saw Lily doing the same.
Chuseph managed get over toward Chikorita and offered it a quick series of slaps with his tiny paws, repeatedly striking her and jumping back. He stumbled, falling flat onto his butt, and unfortunately, releasing a heart gasp for air.
Volkner's teeth clenched. If Chuseph had been able to hold it a little longer, he could have avoided the poison all together; now he had the chance of inhaling it. His best choice would be to remain close to the Chikorita and not risk the breath running.
"Chuseph! Stay close! See how she can handle-"
"Razor Leaf, Chikorita!" Lily exclaimed.
Chikorita closed her eyes, and a few of the leaves on the ground around them began to lift up, as if by some sort of psychic energy. They whirled around for a moment, trimming themselves like a potato being skinned by an old worker: then, they flew forward toward Chuseph.
"Chuseph, focus on dodging!" Volkner said. "Try and hit it with a Thundershock, though!"
Conflicting orders, Volkner realized, but before he could correct himself, Chuseph had started moving. A leap to avoid one leaf, a duck to avoid the next, and a fall flat on his butt - again - in order to get scraped by a third, cutting his skin open and letting a few drops of red blood drip from the wound. Another place for the spores to get into. Volkner cursed, earning a thin and curious smile from Lily.
Chuseph whimpered slightly, but got back up and closed his eyes, firing a small bolt of electricity in Chikorita's direction. The bolt hit Chikorita square on the back, causing her to cry out slightly. She wavered for a moment, but then stood strong once again.
"Wow, that was a stupid move," he heard Gardenia say behind him.
"Aye," Willow agreed. "But it's his battle."
He scowled, trying to keep ignoring them.
"Chikorita, let's go with our specialty!" Lily commanded.
More chatter from behind, but he had to ignore them now. Their specialty? What was she talking about?
"Riiii..." Chikorita started, getting up onto her hind legs for just a moment, her stubby front legs spreading apart.
"Get toward her and use Double Slap, Chuseph!" Volkner commanded. "Do it quick!"
There was a total distance of about three feet in between the two.
"Don't!" he heard Gardenia cry, and he turned to face her.
"What do you mean-"
"Nothin', Sune," Willow said, shoving his hand over the mouth of Gardenia, who was now squirming to get free. He could tell she was biting him, and it was probably rather painful.
"Let her say-"
"It's your battle, Sune. No outside help. Sorry."
"Pay attention, Volkner!" Lily exclaimed triumphantly.
Chuseph, as Volkner turned to see him, was now flying through the air, flung off an apparently elastic string of grass reaching from one end of the arena to the other. He landed with a soft thud on the other side of Chikorita, skidding to a stop at Lily's feet.
"What the hell happened!?"
Finally, Gardenia had apparently broke through. For once, he was glad to hear her annoying accent. "Ya frickin' idiot, Will!" she exclaimed. "...Volkner, that was Grass Knot. It's our gym's specialty move: all of mom's Pokemon know it, and one or two of our Pokemon each know it. It basically creates a trip wire'a grass - the heavier the Pokemon, the more the damage, but the lighter the Pokemon, the longer distance they go. I'm surprised yer lil' Pichu didn't go to the fuc-"
"Gardenia! You're twelve, you shouldn't be using that kind of language."
"Sorry, mom," she muttered. "...Frickin' moon."
"Right... gotta keep an eye out for that," Volkner noted. "Chuseph, let's get up and-"
"Your Pichu isn't getting up," Lily said. "It's a knockout."
Volkner froze, his teeth clenched. "Chuseph, get up-"
"You deaf or something?" she asked. "It's a knock out. K-O."
"Chuseph, GET UP-"
A hand on his shoulder. Volkner turned to face the person who did it: Willow Bryant. The surfer-esque boy shook his head, his eyes filled with a stern look.
"You lost, Sune. It's over - don't make that poor thing get up more than it needs to."
Volkner swatted Willow's hand away, causing him to stumble back, visibly hurt (albeit only slightly) by such actions. "Who cares!? Pokemon are heathens. God damned heathens made for violence, and that's all they're good for!"
Volkner quickly turned, pointing toward the slightly shivering Pichu at Lily's feet. It was obvious to him now that he had gotten poisoned, slowly sapping away at his stamina.
"You stupid little rat! UP! NOW!"
"QUIET!" Lily roared. "Return your Pokemon now. I'm calling the police for abuse otherwise!"
Volkner gritted his teeth harder than ever, feeling himself grinding them into dust. He didn't care. His hand clenched tight around the Pichu's Pokeball and returned it, letting him rest for the moment.
He hated this place. He hated these people: because of that god damned woman, he hated his life. With a cry of frustration, Volkner turned around and headed for the door.
"GOD DAMN IT!"[
Thanks to ShinySandshrew of serebiiforums for the banner!
I'm surprised this story doesn't have many reviews, but I quite like this story. Gym Leaders deserve more time in the spotlight, and Volkner always sparked my curiosity when they mentioned he had quite a rivalry with Flint when they were younger. And his etiquette is always an interest to me, more prominently in this story with his troubles at home and how he translates that towards his treatment of Chuseph.
Gardenia as a hick is a brilliant idea. I can really imagine her as one, especially with her weird grass-themed outfit. I'm looking forward to progressions with other characters, especially the murderous villain and exactly how he ties in with this whole ordeal. I'll definitely be following this story.
Also, I caught a few spelling errors:
Thanks to ShinySandshrew of serebiiforums for the banner!