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This is clearly a Trainer Journey fic (titled in such a generic way that it's laughable) but hopefully this first chapter will intrigue you enough to give it the benefit of the doubt. Since it's been a while since I wrote anything, I'm open to constructive criticism and any advice anyone can give. I hope to better myself as we go along. I intend to write out the first six chapters as a sort of pilot before writing out the whole story from then on and seeing if I can garner any readers.
Pokemon: The Black & White Adventure
Chapter 1: Little White (& Blue) Lies
"Rise and shine, Hilda! Today's the day you've been waiting for!"
Hearing her mother's jubilant voice and the knocking on the door managed to wake Hilda up but not completely. Like a zombie fresh from the grave, she still felt drowsy as she groggily lifted herself up to see the time on her alarm clock.
7:00?! AM?! I don't think so, she thought, mentally sighing to herself. Though she was often full of energy during the day, by no means was she a morning person. At least not before eight sharp. Today was no exception even if it was very special.
"Just five more minutes, Mom," Hilda managed to respond with before lying back down to resume her slumber. It was an overused as all hell line but it was all she had at the moment.
Hilda shut her eyes and turned her back towards the door. She then heard the door open followed by her mother, Helga, stepping inside her bedroom.
Helga sighed and frowned at the sight of her 14-year-old daughter sprawled all over the bed, her pink pajamas still on and long brown hair a mess. "You know, when you ask for five minutes, you never live up to your end of the bargain," she said with her hands on her hips in a stern yet motherly pose.
"Just let me sleep a little longer and I'll be good to go," mumbled Hilda, rolling over to face her back at her mother and trying to rest up some more. "I've got time to spare before the Professor comes."
Their pet Minccino, Minnie, was holding onto Helga's head and was keen to chime in. [Really now, Hilda,] she said in the language of her species, frowning sternly. [You're going to be a Trainer very soon. This isn't the sort of behavior you want to exhibit to the Pokemon. They're going to look up to you as their coach and caretaker.]
Hilda was in no mood to deal with Minnie's nagging this early in the morning. She pulled the covers over her head to try and shut them out. As of now, she was deep in the heart of Snoozeville, Population: her.
Helga and Minnie were upset when they spotted Hilda's now exposed feet and got a mischievous idea to really get her up and at 'em. They exchanged smirks with each other to see that they were on the same wavelength. Helga motioned for the bed and Minnie stealthily leaped down to scamper across the floor. The Chinchilla Pokemon then quietly leapt onto the edge of the bed where Hilda's feet were exposed. She tried hard to stifle in her laughter as she brushed Hilda's soles with her gray fluffy tail.
Feeling the ticklish sensation caused Hilda's eyes to shoot open and her body to spaz out as she let out a laugh herself. She accidently kicked Minnie off the bed and rolled off the edge, taking the covers with her. Hitting the floor was enough to really wake her up but she wasn't hurt badly.
Helga held herself as she chuckled at her little joke and squatted down to her daughter still on the floor. "I'm glad you changed your mind, sweetie," she cheerfully said, done laughing but still amused.
Hilda, however, did not appreciate her rude awakening. "Seriously, Mom?" groaned Hilda as she got up to stretch out and yawn. "You and Minnie promised to never tickle me awake again!" At times, her mother could be more of a best friend than a parent. While it was fun and all, she could be a little too playful sometimes with Hilda. Minnie was also a playful, even for a neat freak and a nagger.
Minnie stepped over from the bed, still feeling Hilda's kick. [I admit that I did deserve that. Many apologies, Hilda.] She was responded with a roll of Hilda's eyes.
"I'm sorry too," said Helga softly, starting to show a somber look on her face. "I only wanted to have some more fun with my little girl before she set out on her journey." She then moved in to embrace her daughter with a big hug. "You know I'm going to miss you very much."
Hilda let her irritation go to receive her mother's warmness and return the hug, smiling all the while. "I'll miss you too, mom," she said before the hug was over. "But hey, we can still see each other every now and then and you'll have Minnie to keep you company. Besides, I wouldn't be a Trainer without your help, Champ."
Helga smiled once more. "You're absolutely right. And speaking of Pokemon Trainers," she said while reaching into her pants pocket to take out a small rectangular box tied with a bow, "guess who came early to deliver the starters?"
Hilda gasped in amazement as her eyes widened. "No way," she practically whispered with her mouth quivering before swiping the box from her mother's hands and tearing it open. Inside it, to her ultimate delight, were three half-red and half-white balls each with a white button. A big bright smile widen on her face as she breathing became heavy to compose herself.
"Aurea decided to have the starters delivered ahead of schedule since she assumed you couldn't wait. Also as your teacher, she told me to say 'hello' to you," Helga explained. "So are you wide awake now?" she added before Hilda suddenly embraced her in a big hug, unable to contain herself any longer. The box was tossed away in the heat of the moment but Minnie managed to catch it.
"Are you kidding? This is the greatest moment of my life! I love it!" Hilda squealed as she leapt up and down while clinging to her mother. "I can't tell you how much this means to me!"
Helga managed to break free and get her daughter to simmer down and sit in the bed. "Okay, okay, take in a deep breath. Believe me, I know exactly how you feel," she said smiling. "Just don't get too eager to pick one before your friends arrive, okay?"
"Alright," nodded Hilda, calmer when something dawned on her and caused her to glare at her mother and Minnie. "You know, if you had shown me the box from the get-go instead of tickling me, I would've gotten up in an instant."
"Hey, it was a harmless joke as all," Helga protested when the three of them heard the doorbell ringing and a familiar voice calling out to them.
"Hey, Hilda! Guess who's ready to be a Trainer?"
"Man, everyone's a morning person but me today," remarked Hilda before asking her mother, "Can you show them in while I get dressed?"
"Will do," answered Helga before heading for the door. "Come along, Minnie."
[As you wish, Miss Helga,] Minnie responded politely, placing the box on the floor and leaving the room alongside her owner.
The doorbell continued to be rung as Helga and Minnie made their way downstairs. "Hold your horses, you two," Helga called out, rushing as fast as she could. Reaching the front door, she opened it up to greet her guests. "Cheren, Bianca, good morning. This is quite the surprise, I must say."
"Sorry if we woke you up, Mrs. Helga," Cheren Blakely said politely as he and Bianca began to take a step inside. "We-"
Minnie interrupted them by clearing her throat, getting their attention as well. [I'm sure it merely slipped your minds but any and all footwear is to be left by the front door,] she said in a stern tone of voice. Though Hilda's friends didn't understand the speech of Pokemon, they knew Minnie enough to get what she was saying.
"Alright, we read you, Minnie," said Cheren as he removed his blue and black shoes to leave them by the front door while Bianca did the same with her yellow shoes along with him. She also put down her green purse too.
"Sorry about that," apologized Helga for Minnie's uptight stance on cleanliness. "Anyways, why so early?"
"Let's just say I had a hunch that a certain somebody would be trying to sleep in as usual despite what today is," said Cheren, adjusting his glasses. "So I left at least fifteen minutes earlier."
Bianca Whitley frowned as she adjusted her green beret, knowing whom Cheren was talking about. "I told you that I would've gotten up eventually. Besides, it takes time for a girl to look her best."
"Fifty years, I'm sure," Cheren said in a deadpan manner. "I've been doing this for you since the 4th grade. I think I know what I'm getting at here."
Helga moved in between them to break up the argument in progress. "Anyhow, Hilda's upstairs getting dressed and Professor Juniper recently came along to deliver the starters. So how are your folks at home?"
"Unfortunately, my dad had to attend a school meeting in Aspertia City early in the morning," said Cheren. "But my mom helped me pack last night."
"My Dad's doing fine but I think he was a bit sad to see me off," said Bianca, seeming sort of somber in her tone. "Not that I really blame him-" She stopped when they all heard the sound of rapid footsteps from upstairs.
"Hey, sorry for the hold up, guys!" Hilda said as she went downstairs to the foyer, now wearing blue denim shorts, a white tank top and black socks with her hair done up in a ponytail.
"Oh, Hilda! Good Morning!" said Bianca, perking up and heading over to embrace her best friend in a hug. "Nice outfit. It's definitely you hands down."
"Thanks but I'm not sure if I can say the same for yours," Hilda said while returning the hug. She took note of Bianca wearing an orange vest over a white gown and orange leggings. "I don't think that was part of Elesa's summer lineup."
"Yeah, but it's a classic. Better than Cheren's any day," Bianca chuckled, referring to Cheren's outfit, consisting of a pair of dark blue pants, a light blue jacket and a white shirt. Awfully formal in her opinion.
Cheren frowned and folded his arms. "Well, not that I really care about fashion but aren't those shorts cutting it a tad too close, Hilda?"
Hilda giggled. "What, are they too long for you" she teased, making a lewd look on her face.
The flabbergasted look on Cheren's face was enough to get Hilda, Helga and Bianca roaring with laughing. "That was never funny to begin with and you know it!" he said, red in the face. "Is it too much to ask for our Pokemon already?"
Composing herself at once, Hilda took the box of Pokemon out from her right pocket as she began heading for the living room with everyone following. "Fine, it's best we cut to the chase already," she said as she sat down on the couch along with Bianca and Cheren.
"I'll fix us up some breakfast," Helga said as she headed for the kitchen.
[And I'll stay here and inspect the new arrivals for any germs,] Minnie said, leaping onto the couch alongside Hilda.
Hilda placed the box onto the table before them and took off the lid to reveal the Poke Balls to the excitement of herself and her friends. "I'll let you two go first and the one left is all mine," she offered generously.
"Don't mind if I do," said Bianca as she took the Poke Ball labeled "Tepig" and pressed the white button to enlarge the ball, deactivating the locking mechanism. "Tepig, come out and meet your Trainer."
The ball opened up in half with a "click" with blue-white formless energy bursting out of the ball like flooding water after a dam burst. The energy leapt down to the floor near the couch and took on physical shape as the orange-black Fire-Pig Pokemon known as Tepig. The Fire Pig stretch itself out after being in the ball for sometime and took a look at his new surroundings.
"Wow-," Bianca begun to say before Minnie cut her off."
[Don't get up just yet,] the Minccino said as she leapt down to the floor and went over to inspect the visitor. She sniffed Tepig and eyed him for any kind of grim while making him feel uncomfortable. [You pass. Just don't sneeze any smoke, understood?] She tiptoed away with her eyes still on Tepig who was confused by this.
Bianca giggled at Tepig's face of bewilderment and got up to see her starter Pokemon. "Don't mind her, Tepig, she's just a neat freak as all," she said while squatting down to get a closer look at her Pokemon. "Anyways, it's good to meet you. I'm Bianca."
Looking up at Bianca, Tepig recognized the voice as the one who called him out. [Oh, so you're my Trainer. Hi, I'm Tepig!] he proclaimed while shining his brightest smile that pierced the heart of Bianca.
"Oh my goodness, you're even cuter in the flesh," Bianca squealed as she grabbed Tepig and hugged him, pushing him up to her chest while jumping up and down in joy. "And you're so warm! I just know that we're going to be such great friends!"
[Likewise,] Tepig managed to say despite the tight embrace; though appreciative of the affection he's receiving. In addition, Bianca was very pretty like Professor Cedric Juniper's daughter…
"I'd recommend not hugging him to death before you can find out," Cheren quipped as he took the Poke Ball labeled "Snivy" for himself and pressed the button to enlarge it. "Come on out, Snivy."
The ball opened to release energy that leapt onto the table to become the green-white snake Pokemon, Snivy. He was taking in his new surrounding when Minnie lashed out at the newcomer, seeing where he was on.
[You there!] the Minccino yelled with the utmost anger. [I just had that table swept ten times over in the last four hours! Remove yourself from there immediately!]
Snivy didn't take kindly to others ordering him about and was naturally irritated by Minnie. He turned to the source of the voice while still keep his cool. [Then just clean it again later, hothead,] he said smugly, smiling at how worked up Minnie was. [That shouldn't be so hard to figure out. At least, I hope it's not, simpleton.]
Minnie was furiously gritting her teeth at such condescension thrown her way but tried her best to put a lid on it. A worried Hilda was almost surprise to not see steam coming out of her ears.
Snivy ignored the elephant in the room and turned to the two humans before him. [So who was the one who called for me?]
"That would be Cheren," answered Hilda, pointing to her friend on her left.
Snivy took a good look at his new Trainer, maintaining his cool and collected demeanor, and sniffed, folding his tiny arms. [Eh, you look okay. A bit pale and scrawny for a Trainer but beggars can't be chooser, now can they?]
Cheren frowned at Snivy's tone and mannerisms. "I don't know what you just said but I doubt I'd like it."
"Well, it was blunt, judgmental and a bit too honest," Hilda said before laughing a little. "On the bright side, you two already have something in common."
"How reassuring," said Cheren drolly, rolling his eyes at Hilda's brand of humor.
Hilda took the last Poke Ball left in the box that was labeled "Oshawott" and pressed the white button to enlarge it. "And now for the moment I've been waiting for," she said with excitement. She took in a deep breath to calm down and held up the ball, saying, "Up an' at 'em, Oshawott!"
The same blue-white energy burst out of the ball and landed on the floor to take physical shape as the blue-white Sea Otter Pokemon, Oshawott. The little guy looked around himself with a wide-eyed look of curiosity and nativity, being use to the inside of the laboratory. He saw Hilda getting up from the couch and walking over to him with a smile on her face. Unsure of whom she was, Oshawott began to feel nervous.
[Um, hello,] Oshawott said in a meek tone of voice that gave off a vibe of timidness. [Are you going to be my Pokemon Trainer?]
"I sure as heck am," said Hilda happily, smiling warmly so as to make Oshawott feel more at ease. "My name's Hilda. Don't ask if I have a last name because I don't. Well, I use to before Mom removed it but that's beside the point. It's nice to meet you, Oshawott."
Hearing this, Oshawott soon realized that he himself should've shown more respect to his Trainer. [It's a pleasure for me as well,] he said, bowing like a Samurai. [I hope that I can serve you well on your journey.]
Hilda giggled, endeared by Oshawott's humbleness and politeness. "Oh my, aren't you the littlest gentlemen now?" she complimented, petting Oshawott on the noggin. "Please, don't be so formal with me. I'm your friend as I am your Trainer. And I prefer Hilda for the record."
Oshawott blushed and smiled at the gesture and the compliment when a stern-looking Minnie surprised him upon turning to his left. She made a menacing "I have my eye on you" gesture before tiptoeing away to attend to Helga, leaving Oshawott speechless.
"Don't mind Minnie," Hilda said. "She just tends to be on-edge when cleanliness is a concern." She put out her right hand to Oshawott. "Anyways, here's to our friendship and our team to be. One down, five to go."
Hesitant at first, Oshawott put out his left paw for Hilda to take and shake with. [Sure, I look forward to working together.] He had a good feeling about this girl, better than he had expected. Hopefully, he could be better than she had expected in due time.
"Hey, guys," Helga yelled from the kitchen. "Breakfast will be ready soon. Why don't you go outside and practice a few moves with your Pokemon? Maybe get to know each other better with a few games too, you know?"
"Sure, Mom!" Hilda responded.
The three friends and their Pokemon headed outside where the weather was moderately warm, being the middle of June and all. After playing a few games, Cheren had suggested they let their Pokemon show what they were made of. Hilda got out three posts with a target on each one to stick into the ground and went over to stand a distance from them with everyone else.
"Alright, Bianca," said Hilda, now wearing black shoes with pink laces for outside, "Ladies first."
Bianca nodded and turned to face three metallic target a short distance from them. "Go on, Tepig. Show us the power you're packing."
Tepig's nostrils flared with determination with actual smoke puffing out and stepped up from Bianca's side. Figuring that bringing out the big guns would make for a good impression, he began concentrating to amplify the Fire power in his body.
Once ready, he dashed off like a comet and looked like one too with a bright, fiery tail streaking behind him. In just one second, he hit the middle target head on and calmly landed back on the ground, leaving a big, smoldering dent in the bull's eyes. To say everyone else was surprised would've been a flat-out understatement. Even Snivy looked awestruck before returning to his stuck-up demeanor to save face.
Bianca smiled as she went over to praise her Tepig. "That was one excellent Flame Charge!" she cheered joyfully, picking Tepig up to look at his in the eye. "I knew I had the right Pokemon in mind choosing you! You're a real cute bruiser for sure."
[Aw yeah!] Tepig squealed and snorted, happy to gain praise from his Trainer and see her smile. [I kick butt!]
Snivy sniffed. [How very optimistic of them,] he said before turning to Cheren beside. [What's say we display my capabilities so they can remember their place, shall we?] He noticed Hilda shooting him a dirty look along with Oshawott strangely enough.
Cheren saw Snivy talking to him and could figure out what he was being told. "Alright, we'll be going on up next. Snivy, show your stuff!"
[With pleasure,] said Snivy as he stepped up closer to the target on the left-hand side. Two green vines sprouted from under his yellow shoulder growth and he swung them each to strike the target again and again, creating dents in it with his Vine Whip attack. One final whip was enough to make a hole in the bull's eye.
[And now for the coup de grace,] said Snivy with glint in his eyes. He leapt up high into the air and, once above the target, began spinning around to create a Leaf Tornado. The wind around him formed a green cyclone with his Grass power that wrecked the target below.
Hilda, Bianca and Cheren were naturally impressed but the same couldn't be said for Oshawott and Tepig who knew Snivy was showing off. Oshawott, in particular, felt uneasy seeing the target destroyed like that, having been a regular victim of Snivy's power during sparring sessions in the lab.
Once the cyclone dissipated, Snivy landed on the ground gracefully and walked back to Cheren. [No need for any applause. I'm well aware of my greatness, thank you.]
Yeesh, Hilda groaned mentally. And I thought Watcher was full of himself. She took in a deep breath and turned to look down at Oshawott. "It's our turn now, Oshawott. Show us your moves."
Gulping, Oshawott nodded yes and began to walk up to the target on the right, his heart racing in anxiety. You can do this, Oshawott. It's just a harmless target. Imagine Snivy's face on it and you're good.
[Go get it, Oshawott!] cheered Tepig.
[Yes, do break a leg out there,] Snivy said with a snide undertone. [Oh, and do your best as well.]
Ignoring that obvious insult, Oshawott took in a deep breath to gather his Water power and spewed from his mouth a concentrated column of water. The blast hit the target in the bull's eye dead on, making a major dent in the circle and bending the post back a bit. The impact made the others jump a bit from the sound.
To finish things off, Oshawott removed the Scalchop from the suction of his bellybutton and held it before him with both of his paws. Concentrating his power on the shell, a blue aura appeared on the Scalchop and stretched into a sharp Shell Blade, hardening into a solid. Hilda and the others were intrigued by where this was going.
With his weapon ready, Oshawott sprung up into the air and began his descent towards the target with his Shell Blade held above himself. When the moment and position was right, Oshawott brought down his blade on the target and, as he fell to the ground, sliced through it down the middle. Landing gracefully, he made the Shell Blade disappear and swung around to stick the Scalchop back on his bellybutton. Behind him, the target, post and all, split in half and fell to each side. As per usual, everyone else was speechless, including Snivy (not that he would admit it).
Hilda was the one to break the silence. "That… was… awesome!" she managed to say with building elation as she ran over to Oshawott. She squatted to look him in the eye. "Those were some really slick moves. That last one was a real killer most of all."
Oshawott made a bashful look on his face as he laughed. [I'm glad you liked it,] he said, glad to have made a great impression. [Though I must admit that I wasn't really giving it my all.]
"If that was you going easy," started Hilda as she stood up, "then I can hardly wait to really see you in action." Just then, she saw a nervous expression appeared on Oshawott's face, making her concerned. "Is there something wrong?"
Realizing he's setting off alarms, Oshawott tried to hide his misgivings the best he could. [Nothing's wrong at all. In fact, I look forward to showing what else I can do in battle.]
Snivy sniffed and rolled his eyes at such a lie while Tepig got concerned for his friend.
Hilda was still concerned but thought it best not to push it. "Oh, okay," she said. "I think Mom should be done making breakfast, right about now."
"Finally," Bianca chimed in. "I didn't get to eat much of anything at home." She eyed Cheren glaringly as they all turned to walk back to the house. "At least I would've in due time."
"At your pace?" quipped Cheren. "Don't make me laugh." Just as he touched the backdoor's knob, they all hear someone clear their throat and looked to their left where Minnie had the hose turned on and in her paws.
[My apologies for the inconvenience,] said Minnie with a smile on her face, [but outside is where you're most susceptible to grim and germs. Something I absolutely cannot tolerate.]
[Oh, good grief,] said Snivy. This time, nobody could blame him.
After a thorough wash and drying courtesy of Minnie, Hilda, Bianca and Cheren got seated at the table to eat breakfast with Helga. Meanwhile, down on the floor, Oshawott, Tepig and Snivy ate their Pokemon food out of bowls along with Minnie, much to their discomfort. The humans chattered amongst themselves while the Pokemon did the same.
[You know, we really lucked out on these Trainers,] said Tepig, upbeat as usual. [I already love Bianca. She's so sweet.]
[Eh, Cheren's okay so far,] Snivy said, shrugging after swallowing. [But the verdict is still out on his battling skills.]
[Well, I think Hilda's great already,] said Oshawott with his smiling mouth full yet still speaking timidly. [I can't wait to see how great of a Trainer she is.]
[With your losing streak?] sniffed Snivy, folding his arms indignantly. [Don't get your hopes up, Water Boy. I've mopped the battlefield with you figuratively and literally in every sparring session and very few times have you ever won.]
[Well, but-] Oshawott begun to protest with a worried look on his face but he didn't know what to say. As rude and stuck-up as he was, Snivy had a point…
[You know that it's true and soon Hilda will once you drag her down with your constant losses,] Snivy went onto say. [Then it'll be only a matter of time before your discarded like common trash. Of course, you've only known her for an hour so really who knows. Not that I'd risk it in your place.]
Oshawott tried to talk back in further protest but soon saw Snivy's point. Looking at Hilda at the table, he recalled how stoked she was to become a Trainer and how she seemed in it to win lots of battles. With his persisting losing streak, who was to say that after six losses in a row, Hilda wouldn't realize how Oshawott was ill suited for battle and let him go as soon as possible?
In fact, Oshawott could easily imagine her leaving the Sea Otter back at the laboratory and saying, "I'm sorry, Oshawott, but I'm afraid that it's pointless to keep you when you can't get a single victory. You're on your own, pal. It's for the best." The scary part of it was how vivid it seemed in his mind. Oshawott was left speechless as he continued feeding himself solemnly.
[I told you so,] said Snivy, rubbing salt in Oshawott's wounds before feeling Minnie's painful Tailslap attack hit him hard from behind. His nose even inhaled a piece of food to his displeasure.
[I think we've had enough of you for one day, thank you very much,] said Minnie sternly.
The humans at the table were too engaged in a conversation to pay attention to the Pokemon down on the floor. Just then, Helga checked her X-Transceiver to see that it was 8:03 AM and told everyone of the time.
"Just a little head up, guys," she said as a warning. "We're expected at the lab in about a quarter of an hour so we best finish our food and maybe make some last minute check ups too."
"I'm all good," insisted Hilda. "I don't think I've forgotten any-" She stopped herself before widening her eyes in realization. "Oh crap!" she exclaimed as she bolted up from her chair, making everyone else jump in surprise. She held her head and pulled her hair in a panic. "How could it have slipped my mind? I am such a terrible friend."
Helga knew exactly what her daughter was talking about. "You can still get to them with time to spare if you leave now."
"Oh, thank you, mom!" Hilda said before turning to her Pokemon. "Oshawott, finish every bit of food as fast as you can. We're leaving in a minute sharp."
[Okay!] answered Oshawott before scarfing down all the food he had left, slow enough to not choke at least, whilst Hilda did the same.
After washing down all the food with milk, Hilda was good to go. "I'll meet you all in the woods when you guys are ready to go," she said while getting up to rush out of the kitchen for the front door. Oshawott trailed behind as fast as he could keep up with her.
[If you don't mind me asking,] Oshawott began to ask as he stepped through the door and onto the front porch, [where are we going?]
"Well, you're about to meet some very good friends of mine," said Hilda as she reached into her left pocket to take out a metallic case and opened it up. She picked out a Capsule labeled "02: Bicycle" and pushed its button before tossing it down the stairs to the ground. In big burst of steam, the Capsule changed into a bicycle with the kickstand already up.
Hilda then picked up Oshawott as she ran downstairs to the bicycle and placed him into the basket while she got onto the seat, ready to ride. "Hold on tight, Oshawott," said Hilda with a determined tone of voice. "We don't a second to spare."
With that said, Hilda began pedaling the bike fast onto the sideway while Oshawott shut his eyes and held tight to the basket, scared he might fall out. She then made a swift turn at the corner to go down the street and straight to the entrance leading to the West Wood of Nuvema Town.
[Why exactly are your friends in the woods?] Oshawott asked as the bike jumped and bumped on the dirt path. They passed bushes and trees along with various wild Pokemon that watched them go by.
"It's a surprise," said Hilda as she swerved off onto a smaller pathway. "You have to see it to believe it." She eyed her X-Transceiver to briefly check that she still had enough time left before she came to a small clearing. She braked as she rolled alongside a small tree stump and put up the kickstand.
Oshawott was lifted out of the basket and put on the ground to move about more and so Hilda could recapsulize it. He looked around at the woods in wonderment. It wasn't often that he got to go out into the woods with the Professors or even this deep. [So how long until your friends-]
Before Oshawott could asked anything at all, Hilda cleared her throat and shouted on the top of her lungs, "HEY, YOU GUUUUUUYYYYYS!" making the Sea Otter Pokemon jump in surprise. "You're about to get your answer soon enough," she told Oshawott with an excited grin and a chipper tone of voice. "Though I suggest you step away from me."
A few seconds after she spoke, Hilda and Oshawott heard the sound of rustling leaves getting closer from all around, coming their way. Oshawott did as Hilda suggested and moved away from his Trainer even though he was still unsure why.
In mere seconds, six Pokemon burst straight out from the bushes two at a time on all sides and tackled Hilda one at a time to dog-pile on her. First, a Watchog and a Patrat, then a Herdier and a Lillipup and finally, two Sewaddles that swung on a branch using String Shot. Though it was painfully, Hilda wasn't upset but rather very happy to see her good friends again as she laughed along with them.
All this nearly made Oshawott jump right out of his skin seeing his Trainer attacked by wild Pokemon. [Hilda! Are you Okay!?] he cried out. He dared not attack given their strength in number yet his Trainer was in trouble.
"Alright, guys, you can get off me now," insisted Hilda as the six Pokemon on her got off and stood up beside her. The Watchog actually helped her up on her feet. "Everyone, meet my starter Pokemon, Oshawott."
Seeing how his Trainer wasn't upset or appeared to be in any sort of danger, Oshawott settled down and realized something. [Wait, are these the "friends" you've been speaking of this whole time?]
"Uh huh," nodded Hilda. "I'll introduce you to the gang." She pointed to the Watchog by her right side. "This is Watcher, the default leader next to me and the one who tried too hard to be cool."
[I don't need to try,] Watcher said while folding his arms. [I already am.]
"Right, how could I've forgotten?" said Hilda sarcastically. She then squatted down to where the Patrat was, near her legs. "This is Patrick, Watcher's little brother and one of the cutest members of our group." She petted his head a little getting a giggle out of him.
[Hi, Oshawott!] greeted Patrick, waving to the newcomer. [It's nice to meet you and not be the smallest for once.]
"Um, that's not a nice way of putting it," said Hilda in a concern tone. She knew that Patrick meant well but could be a bit careless with what he said. She dismissed it to move onto the Herdier by her left leg. "Anyways, this is Herdy, a pretty heroic Pokemon who got us out of a few scraps now and then."
[I hardly consider 34 times a month "a few?"] said Herdy indignantly.
"I didn't realize you kept count," retorted Hilda. She then pointed to the Lillipup who was panting heavily, tongue stuck out, with excitement. "That's his little sister, Lilly, a real firecracker who can really bounce off the walls. And I meant that literally too."
[Hey, Hilda, is Bianca coming soon?] Lilly practically shouted out loud.
"Soon, I hope," Hilda said, checking her ears. She pointed to the twin Sewaddles next to Herdy and Lilly. "Next, these two are the Sewaddle Sisters, Sue and Addle. They're wild, reckless and aren't the kind you wanna pick a fight with."
[We're here to kick tail…] Sue began with fiery passion.
[…and chew bubble gum!] Addle finished with similar passion.
[And we're all outta bubble gum,] they both finished. [At least we would if we knew what it was]
"Lastly, here's…" Hilda began to say before realizing that they were one member short. "Wait, where's Pidove?"
[Ah yeah,] said Watcher as he remembered. [I went to get him but he was really bushed from last night so I left him be. I'm sure he'll catch up soon.]
While observing the group, Oshawott began to pick up on the banter and realize that Hilda was responding to the Pokemon like she knew exactly what they were saying. In fact, she seemed to reply to what he'd say to her before but he figured they were lucky guesses. Still, it never hurt to ask once.
[Um, Hilda,] Oshawott ventured forth, getting everyone's attention. [Is it me or does it seem like you're communicating with these Pokemon? I don't wish to sound crazy but that's how it looks like.]
Hilda and her Pokemon friends exchanged dumbfounded looks until someone broke the silence.
[You mean you only now caught on?] asked Watcher, befuddled.
Hilda decided to use a nicer response. "Yes, Oshawott, I have the ability to communicate with any and all Pokemon," she said. "My Mom has this ability as well with it being passed down through her family line."
[Wow, really?] said Oshawott, now very intrigued. [How do you do it?]
"I… have no idea," said Hilda, now unsure. "It's basically like my brain has a build in translator that helps me understand Pokemon and vice versa. I don't really have any control over it and I try to keep it under wraps in public. Aside from mom, Cheren, Bianca and others, it's a total secret. Minnie use to be wild before she followed me home and decided to stay."
[So this ability helped you make friends with everyone here?] Oshawott deduced.
"You sure catch on quick," stated Hilda. "Living in town can be fun and all but coming out her to the great outdoors is great. These guys have been like a second family for me here and it sometimes feels like I'm a Pokemon too."
[But enough about us,] said Herdy. [What about you, Oshawott?]
[Yeah,] said Lilly, perking up as she trotted over to probe Oshawott with questions. [What's it like in that lavatory?]
[Um, it's called a "laboratory" actually,] said Oshawott, feeling uneasy without his personal space as Lilly got up-close to him. [And to answer your question, it's quite nice, I guess.]
Patrick moved in to question the newcomer as well. [I hear some people perform experiments there. Does it hurt?]
[How's the food there?] Sue asked, crawling over alongside Addle.
[Why do the people there wear those white coats?] Addle asked as well.
Being swarmed with questions and curious little ones was very overwhelming for Oshawott before Hilda stepped into sort everything out. "Alright, you guys. Lay off him already. He'll answer when he's good and ready."
[Okay, Hilda,] sighed Patrick as he and the others moved away from Oshawott. [We're sorry.]
[It's okay,] said Herdy. [To be fair, I'm curious about how tough lab Pokemon can be.]
[Eh, not much if you asked me,] said Watcher with a hint of arrogance. [Out here in the wild is where you can really learn to toughen up.]
Hearing this, Oshawott was provoked into responding. [Actually, Watcher, the lab Pokemon I've met are well-trained and could perhaps even work you over in a battle. Myself included.] The last tidbit was a lie but he figured that what they didn't know wouldn't hurt them. Even if it wasn't right, he still wanted to make a good first impression on Hilda's good friends.
[Oh really?] said Watcher skeptically. [And how many battles have you won?]
[Uh,] Oshawott hesitated for a second before choosing a random number. [Fifteen! In a row!]
Watcher, Herdy and the other woodland Pokemon exchanged expressions of amazement with themselves and Oshawott, eating up such a claim as the truth. Lilly and Patrick were especially in awe, being the impressionable youngsters they were.
Hilda's face made a dubious expression at her starter's claim. She wasn't entirely sure but something didn't seem right with Oshawott's words and actions. But then she smiled, dismissing the idea. He's probably just exaggerating to make a good impression, she thought. Might as well let him have his harmless fun. Though her doubts still remained in the back of her head…
Oshawott wasn't use to such praise even though he was fibbing but for him, it was a nice change and little more probably would hurt. [They were really sparring session with my two fellow starters but the Professors made them like real battles to prepare us. I go easy against Tepig since he's a fire-type but with Snivy, I hold nothing back.]
Oshawott began to puff himself up as he spoke of himself with pride. Lies or not, he liked the feeling being admired and for once, he wanted to feel like he was great. [And outside battle, the Professors always making sure to have us practice our moves such as…] He took off his Scalchop and created the Shell Blade, which took everyone by surprise. […my Razor Shell!]
"Well, it's nice to see that I choose a real go-getter to start my journey with," said Hilda, cheerfully despite her underlying concerns. "Try not to let it go to your head now."
[I promise,] said Oshawott, smiling as Hilda patted his head. It felt good to gaining her approval even if he wasn't being truthful. She'd find out eventually but for now, he'd make these moments last…
[You know,] said Watcher. [hearing all that makes me wanna take a crack at you, squirt.]
Oshawott gulped but thought fast. [Maybe some other time but not now, if you don't mind.]
"I actually have to agree, Watcher," said Hilda. "I'm planning to have my first battle at the lab where they'll check up on my battle skills."
Oshawott sighed in relief. For now, he got lucky…
The sound of rustling footsteps gets everyone's attention as they all looked to see Helga, Bianca and Cheren making their way towards the clearing along with Minnie. Happy to see their friends again, Lilly and Patrick dashed over to greet Bianca and Cheren respectively while Minnie went over to greet her old friends from the woods.
In the midst of all the various chatter, Helga went over to Hilda and Oshawott to talk. "We're expected at the lab in less than a half hour but if it's all the same with you, could you battle me? I'd like to see just how good my little girl is so far."
Clasping her hands together in joy, Hilda smiled. "I'd be more than happy to, Mom. I own you for helping me even get this far."
Oshawott was unable to share such a sentiment, freezing up and going a bit blue in the face. He pulled himself together enough to protest to his Trainer. [B-but Hilda, what about our check-up battle?]
"It can wait," said Hilda, dismissively. "Mom has taught me how to be Trainer before I took classes and believe me, this is the least I can do to repay her. You're not upset at this, are you?"
[Oh no,] said Oshawott, frantically trying to not get her too suspicious. [If this is what you want to do, then I'll go along with it.] He made a faux-smile to hide the immense feeling of anxiety welling up inside of him. He had dug his own grave and all that was left was to bury himself with his own lies. It would've happened sooner or later but he would've preferred later if anything.
Everything was sorted out soon enough. Helga and Minnie stood together at one end of the clearing while Hilda and Oshawott had taken many steps back to create enough space for their makeshift battlefield. Bianca, Cheren and the woodland Pokemon sat on a picnic blanket right on the sidelines to spectate along with Snivy and Tepig who were let out to watch the battle.
"Get ready, Oshawott," said Hilda, feeling her heart race excitedly for her first battle as an actual Pokemon Trainer. "This will be our first battle and our first victory."
[Yeah, let's clean their clocks!] proclaimed Oshawott, faking enthusiasm to hide his anxiety the best he could. Luckily, Hilda couldn't see his face with his back turned or how he was sweating like a Tepig.
Hang on, Oshawott thought. Minnie hates griminess and nothing gets you dirtier than a battle. Maybe I can win this if she holds back. He prayed silently for that to be the case.
"I'll let you make the first move, Hilda," said Helga with a confident look on her face. "Just don't expect me to go easy on you in the slightest. Daughter or not, you're still my opponent."
Minnie nodded in agreement with a determined, battle-ready look on her face.
"Wouldn't have any other way," said Hilda with spunky and pep before taking in a deep breath to compose herself and shift to a serious demeanor. "Get ready, Oshawott. Wait for my order."
Oshawott snapped out of his thoughts hearing this and knowing its crunch time for him, he took in a deep breath like her. [Ready when you are, Hilda,] he said, trying to be as stoic as possible and pretty unsuccessfully at that.
"Fire your Water Gun now!" Hilda ordered loud and clear. A quick long range attack should do it. Plus, Minnie hates the smell of wet fur.
[Got it!] said Oshawott as he took in a deep breath while building up power. He quickly spewed out a concentrated column of water straight at Minnie.
"Jump and Swift!" Helga ordered just as the Water Gun attack began.
From her orders given, Minnie knew how to proceed with the situation given. Before the column of water could hit her, Minnie pounced into the air as the water passed below her. She began to do a backflip forward while powering up her tail and when her body rolled over airborne enough, she whipped her tail to launch a bunch of energized star-shaped projectiles.
Seeing this made Oshawott frantically remove his Scalchop for protection but each and everyone of the stars hit him dead-on. This caused his shell to fly out of his paw as she fell to the ground and drop and few feet from him.
Hilda was also caught off-guard by Minnie's moves and utterly speechless Her mother wasn't a champion once for nothing, that much was clear. However, this wasn't the time to admire her foe and was about to speak out her next order when her mother beat her to it.
"Tickle him, Minnie!"
"Oh crap, no!" exclaimed Hilda, eyes widening after hearing the dreaded word. "Oshawott! Razor Shell! Quick!"
Regaining his bearings, Oshawott stood up and looked for his Scalchop. Seeing it on the ground at 8 o'clock, he began to head over to get it. A big mistake as he would soon see.
With her foe's back turned, Minnie took the opportunity to run over and latch on to him from behind. She moved her tail to tickle Oshawott's bare belly, making him laugh out loud and stumble about while dropping his defenses.
Hilda blushed at how cute the whole scene looked but concentrated on the battle. "Come on, Oshawott! Shake her off!"
"Tailslap!" shouted Helga.
Minnie got off of Oshawott and stopped tickling him, allowing him to pant a little from laughing so much. When he turned around to face her, Minnie swung her tail around back and forth to strike Oshawott four times in a row. Oshawott fell face first onto the ground, in pain and out of stamina to battle anymore.
Hilda and the spectators were speechless at the whole battle and how it went so damn fast. Snivy broke the silence with a pompous sniff, having known what to expect.
Realizing she had gotten carried away, Helga made a look that basically said, "Uh oh." She saw Minnie return to her, visibly sharing the sentiment with a frown. "I'm really sorry, Hilda," she said to her daughter eight feet away. "It's been so long since I had anything close to a real battle that I kinda went overboard. Hope this doesn't hurt your confidence."
Snapping out of her shock, Hilda heard her mother's words. "I understand, Mom," she replied, not sad but still befuddled by the battle. "I only wish we could've made this one last longer."
"We could have a rematch," offered Helga.
"Nah, we haven't got the time," said Hilda, looking at her X-Transceiver. She then looked away to see Oshawott looking very sorrowful as he slowly picked up his Scalchop and placed it back on his bellybutton. Figuring she know how he was feeling, she went over to him and squatted down to his level.
Oshawott's self-esteem was at an all-time low, far more than before, as he tried to avoid eye contact with Hilda.
"Don't worry, Oshawott," said Hilda as she smiled in attempt to comfort her starter. "There's still room for improvement and there'll always be next time."
Hearing this, Oshawott's eyes widened as his mind went back to Snivy's words and his fantasy of Hilda letting him go. Tears welled up in his eyes, soaking his furry face, as he breathed quickly and heavily while sniffing to everyone's surprise.
Hilda made a look of astonishment at Oshawott's suddenly sobbing. "H-hey! It's just one loss. There'll be plenty of battles to win-"
[No, there won't!] Oshawott burst out with great emotion. [I've barely won a single sparring match, let alone any sort of battle. I was lying so you wouldn't be disappointed in me so soon but now… what's the point? I'll never ever improve. I'm just a pathetic weakling. No better than trash.]
Bianca, Cheren and the Pokemon exchanged looks of discomfort and unsureness due to the sudden heavy atmosphere. Even Snivy held his tongue out of a rare instance of decency. Helga and Minnie felt the same way only worse due to the role they played in this.
Hilda made a solemn look on her face. She didn't know what to say at the moment but seeing that Oshawott needed time to cry it out, she took his Poke Ball from her pocket and enlarged it. "Here, return and rest up for now," she said very softly.
Oshawott, still tearing up, looked up and nodded sadly, allowing the red recall beam to hit him and revert his body into pure energy that the ball took back in.
Feeling responsible, Minnie ran up to speak to Hilda. [I am very sorry this had to happen, Hilda. I-]
"Don't be," said Hilda. "There was no way you could've known… unlike me. I should've paid closer attention to the hints."
"I just hope this whole thing can be sorted out soon," said Helga as she walked over to her daughter.
"Yeah," said Hilda as she gazed at Oshawott's Poke Ball.
Hilda bid a fond farewell to her forest friends before heading back to her home with Cheren, Bianca and Helga. After a last minute inspection of what they packed, the three Trainers got into the car and were driven towards the laboratory courtesy of Helga, Minnie waving goodbye.
Sitting in the back seat near the window, Hilda said nothing on the way while staring vacantly, deep in thought. Normally, she wouldn't have been able to contain herself with excitement but instead; she was pre-occupied by Oshawott's breakdown and was wondering what to do. She had dealt with similar issues before but this was really sudden.
Cheren decided to break the silence while leaving Hilda well enough alone. "Um, Mrs. Helga, could you maybe turn on the radio or something?"
"I guess," said Helga. She turned on the radio and adjusted the volume before tuning into a News Station.
"…in related news, reports of stolen Pokemon have been growing numerously for the past two months. The police have recommended that all Trainers must keep their Pokemon close by and be exceptionally cautious of suspicious characters they may encounter…"
Helga switched off the radio while scowling in discomfort. "On second thought, we're almost there anyways."
"This is so scary," gulped Bianca. "Those poor Trainers…"
"That's putting it mildly," Cheren added grimly.
Hilda paid no mind to everyone else when she saw a playground coming up and got an idea to set things straight with Oshawott. "Mom, can you stop the car here? There's something I need to do…"
"I understand, Hilda," said Helga, knowing what she was talking about and eased on the brakes to stop the car. "But before you go, take this." She opened the glove compartment to take out a baseball cap. "Wear it as a memento of me for your journey. Good luck."
"Thanks," said Hilda as she took the cap and stepped out of the car. She closed the door and watched it drive off as she put on the cap, making sure her ponytail fit through the back.
Looking around the playground, Hilda saw an Ice Cream Vendor she recognized from some years back and figured that Oshawott could use a little pick-me-up before their talk. She ran over to the elderly man who was nodding off from boredom when he heard her approaching him. Lifting his head up, he opened his eyes and was surprised to see a familiar face before him.
"My word, Hilda!" the old timer exclaimed happily. "How much you've grown! Is it true that you're a trainer now?"
Hilda smiled and nodded. "I'm on my way to the lab but I figured my starter and I could use some Ice Cream. Oh, speaking of which…" She took out Oshawott's Poke Ball from her right pocket and pressed the button to unlock it. "Oshawott, come on out."
Oshawott burst out of the ball and stood on the ground before Hilda. He wasn't crying anymore but it was obviously still in low spirits. He looked up at his Trainer, fearfully saying nothing and awaiting what she had in store for him. Perhaps she had a punishment for his deception…
But to his surprise, Hilda was smiling and showed no feelings of disdain at all. "So Oshawott, I heard from Professor Juniper awhile back that you're allowed Ice Cream and I figured we could use some to cheer us up. What flavor would you like?"
Oshawott's eyes widened in further bewilderment and he wondered if he was in any trouble at all. Nevertheless, he dared to speak up. [Um, vanilla please,] he feebly asked.
"Alrighty then," said Hilda as she turned over to the vendor. "One chocolate for me and one vanilla for the little guy here."
"Coming right up," said the vendor, in the dark about Hilda's ability and figuring she guessed. He took two cones and slide the freezer open to scoop out vanilla and chocolate ice cream for both cones. "Here you are," he said as he handed both cones for Hilda to take.
"Thanks," said Hilda as she began to walk to a nearby bench. "Come along, Oshawott. We can sit at the bench to eat."
Oshawott ran alongside Hilda while looking at her in a confused manner, wondering if she even remembered his breakdown. Hilda sat down on the bench as he leaped up onto the bench alongside her. He was handed his vanilla ice cream cone and started eating it. He was almost done when he felt pain in his head from eating to fast.
[AAAAAAHHHHHH! My head!] cried Oshawott as he flailed about on the bench in agony. [Makeitstop, makeitstop, makeitsetop!]
Finishing her ice cream, Hilda put down her cone fast and moved over to Oshawott as he cried. "Now, now," she said soothingly and motherly as she rubbed his head. "Just calm down and the pain will go away faster."
Oshawott looked up at his Trainer, despite the headache, and felt that Hilda was truly concerned for him, not mad. He did just as he was told and soon the pain dissipated. He sighed in relief and even started laughing a little over his little escapade.
Hilda smiled and laughed a little herself. "It's good to see you perking up more. I was really worried about you after that breakdown you had."
[So…] Oshawott began to say before hesitating a little, [you're not at all upset at me? I lied about my strength and lost horribly as proof.]
Hilda made a look of confusion. "Why would I be mad? I could tell that you weren't being truthful actually and just played along mostly. I've done my share of it years back and really there's no harm in it."
[Are you really?] asked Oshawott, needing reassurance.
"Of course," said Hilda. "I mean, do I strike you as the type to get super-uptight at even the smallest of mishaps?"
[Not… really,] Oshawott responded timidly. [I was really afraid of continuing to lose your battles. You'd get fed up and let me go, seeing that I'd never improve.]
"What?!" said Hilda, flabbergasted. "Hold up, can you start from the beginning? From when you were being prepped in the lab."
[Well…] said Oshawott, hesitant to spill the beans.
"I promise I won't be mean to you," insisted Hilda. "I just want to help you as your Trainer. You do trust me, right?"
The last part was enough to convince Oshawott. He took in a deep breath and began his explanation. [During sparring session, Snivy would always beat in no matter how hard I tried. Even if I'd get a few hits in, he'd always be the winner and kick me when I'm down. That is, rub my loss in. I'd refine my moves outside the battlefield but it never made a difference. I was very nervous about meeting you and though you seemed nice, I couldn't help but be afraid. I didn't mean to lie but it felt good to be liked even if it was wrong of me.]
"I see…" Hilda said solemnly. "So the reason you sobbed and said how you'd never improve?"
[Because it's true,] Oshawott said, beginning to tear up. [I haven't even won a hand full of battles and even Minnie made mincemeat of me. I might as well face facts and quit while I'm ahead…]
"Stop!" said Hilda, holding out her hand to Oshawott to interrupt him. "How would you know that when I've only been your Trainer for a few hours? Where's the harm in giving it a shot?"
[You'd be wasting your time with me,] said Oshawott. [I'm not worth it.]
"I think it could be worth it," said Hilda. "But we won't know unless we try. You're still young and I'm just a beginner so we can't be the best from the get-go. Though I hate to pull rank, as your Trainer, I'm going see to it that you become one of my best Pokemon."
[But I'm weak!] Oshawott began to protest. [That battle in the woods was-]
"-against my mother, a former Pokemon League Champion," Hilda interrupted. "I knew full well that I could've lost even against Minnie who's not much of a battler. We trainers do half of the work in battle strategizing and barking orders for you Pokemon to carry out. If anything, I'm to blame because I could think fast enough against my own mother, a Veteran. But I'm not going to give up now when I have such a long way to go if I want to be a great Trainer.
"The point is," she continued, "that any Pokemon can go from weak to powerful if given the chance and a Trainer willing to help them. They just need confidence in themselves and give it a shot rather than worrying if they can do. Well, that's what my mother drilled into my head for years on end but I know to take her words for it."
Hearing his Trainer speak all this with such determination left Oshawott in awe. [Do you really mean all that? Even if I turn out to be a big disappointment in battle?]
"Even if you don't become instant champion material, I'm not going to discard you like trash," said Hilda. "I'd hate to get all sappy but human or Pokemon, you are my very good friend and I want to keep it that way. Maybe you'll end up being the most skilled Samurott Unova ever witnessed or maybe you be the end-all-be-all worst battler ever. We won't know unless we try."
Oshawott was unsure when Hilda reached her hand out to him.
"I'm more than confident to try. If you are, let's shake on it."
Oshawott hesitated for a few seconds, still unsure, until he replayed her words in his head. He had only known this girl for a short while yet now it felt like he knew her his whole life. Like he knew her as somebody he could always rely on and put his trust in if worst came to worst. And, to be honest with himself, he really did want to battle and see where he could go.
With that settled, Oshawott plucked up enough courage to put out his paw so Hilda could hold it as they shook on their new friendship. [I'm still uncertain of myself but I'm at least willing to try. And… I trust that you'll do your best to help me.]
"Thank you," said Hilda. "Of course, you're the first member of this team. There'll be five more and they could help you too." She then stood up from the bench and saw the time on her X-Transceiver. "My, how time flies. We better hurry to the lab now." Then something dawned on her. "Say, could you show me one of your move since we'll be battling soon? I assume you know Tackle but what's the fourth one?"
[Um,] said Oshawott blushing. [If I show you, will you promise not to laugh?]
"Sure," said Hilda. "Go ahead and show me."
Oshawott did just that but Hilda found herself stifling a laugh, breaking her promise.
[Hey!] Oshawott shouted, stopping his move. [You promised!]
"I'm sorry, really," insisted Hilda as she composed herself. "But thanks to you, you gave me an idea…"
Author's Note: Wow. That's one long chapter. If you made here already, congrats.
While I'm confident in the story itself, I can't say the same for the narration and the dialogue since... it lacks "flare" in my eyes, especially since this is mostly a pilot to see where I can go with this. I would greatly appreciate constructive criticism on what I did right and what I need to work on. Be detailed. Thank you very much.
The Capsule concept is obviously taken from Dragon Ball to replace the Hammerspace backpack.
Hilda did make a reference to "The Electric Company." She liked it as a youngster.
I'm sure I don't need to explain the usage of brackets for PokeSpeech translated.
A lot of stuff that's under-explained or ill-elaborated here will be in future chapters (assuming I don't forget). In other words:
Author's note: I'm back. Here's Chapter 2 where the story truly pick up with a certain team making their debut.
Chapter 2: Lab Rats.
After getting out of Helga's car, Bianca and Cheren stepped through the automatic dual-doors into the Pokemon Research Laboratory, sighing in relief that they made it at last and that the lobby was well air-conditioned. Being Sunday, the employees weren't around on their weekly day-off. Coincidently enough, they saw Professor Aurea Juniper and her father, Cedric, coming down the hallway at the moment, prompting them to run over to meet up with them.
"Right on time, you two," quipped Cedric Juniper whose eye always seemed to be closed when they weren't. His face then made a look of concern. "But where the heck is Hilda? You'd think she'd be the first one barging through those doors."
"It's... complicated," said Bianca, recalling the "incident" with unease.
"Well, to make a long story short, Hilda's just giving Oshawott a little pep talk to boost his self-esteem," answered Cheren.
"If it's Helga's daughter, then Oshawott's in good hands," said Aurea happily. "Speaking of which, before the check-up battle begins, we'd like to see how you're Pokemon are doing now."
The two Trainers nodded yes and each took out their starter's Poke Balls to unlock them with the white button. After the balls grew, the two starter Pokemon, Tepig and Snivy, let themselves out onto the floor by their Trainer's feet.
Bianca bent over to pick up Tepig. "This little guy awfully spunky and awfully adorable," she said joyfully as she wrapped her arms around the Fire Pig Pokemon who smiled as he received her affection. "I love him so much already."
"And I see Tepig feels the same about you," said Aurea as she leaned in to see how Tepig was in high spirits with his Trainer. "Incredibly impressive how you bonded with him so well."
"I see Snivy's still acts all high and mighty," said Cedric, kneeling down to look at Snivy who turned his head and sniffed in offense.
"He's pretty indifferent towards me," said Cheren. "Can't win them all over, I guess."
"It'll take time with the likes of Snivy," said Cedric, standing right back up. "Either way, my daughter has certainly taught you well in your classes."
At that very moment, the Professors and the Trainers heard the dual-doors slide open followed by multiple footsteps before looking to see four sharp-suited people (two male, two female) walking over to them. The young man with black facial hair, sunglasses and gray fedora was leading them and spoke as he and his associates reached the four they were looking for.
"A pleasure to meet you, Professors Cedric and Aurea Juniper," he said. "My associates and I are the inspectors sent from the League to perform a standard surprise inspection of this establishment. I presume you were called about this yesterday."
"Huh?" said Cedric before it all clicked in a second. "Oh, that's right! Aurea and I were expecting you, Mister-"
"Willis. Bertram Willis," introduced the lead inspector before motioning towards the violet-haired female inspector to his left. "To my left here is Janet Alans," he then motioned towards the young man with short brown hair and the young lady with long black hair. "and to my right there is Bright Alexanders and Vanessa Allison."
"The pleasure is all our's," said Aurea as she motioned towards Cheren and Bianca. "As it happens, these two along with a third have recently become Pokemon Trainers and are having a check-up battle to display their current skills before heading out on their journey. Meet Bianca Whitley and Cheren Blakely."
"Well, might I say that it's great to meet new and promising Trainers," said Bertram as he thrust out his hand at Bianca. "We wish you the best of luck."
"Thank you," said Bianca as she took Bertram's hand to shake on it when she noticed something familiar about his face yet she could pin it down. "Um, have we met before?"
Bertram seemed to wince at her question. "I- don't believe we have. Sorry but I'm sure you're mistaken."
Overhearing this, Cheren took a look at Bertram himself. "I dunno. You seem kind of familiar but... where have I seen you before?"
Wanting to change the subject, Janet cleared her throat in order to get attention. "Um, this third Trainer you mention will be arriving soon, will she?"
And speak of the devil, the dual-doors opened up to let Hilda and Oshawott run right on inside. Upon joining everybody else, the two of them stopped to catch their breath after bicycling and running all the way. "Sorry for the holdup, Professors. I was just trying to help Oshawott lift his spirits."
"Well, I'd say your efforts were not in vain," said Cedric as he and Aurea saw Oshawott with a happy look on his face. "And since you're here, we can finally hand out the Pokedexes and get the battles started. Aurea, if you would."
"Right away, Dad," replied Aurea as she reached into her lab coat pocket and took out three rectangular devices that almost looked like i-pods. She handed each one to Hilda, Bianca and Cheren and began explaining them. "You can look up any information on any Unovan Pokemon such as their current moveset, what they can learn via experience or Technical Machines, gauge a Pokemon's battle power be it their own or their foe's."
As the Trainers marveled at their new tool, Tepig and Snivy went over to see Oshawott.
[Are you really all better now, Oshawott?] Tepig asked with concern. [You were pretty broken up there.]
[I was until Hilda helped me,] answered Oshawott, slightly smiling. [I really feel like I have a shot with her as my Trainer.]
Snivy sniffed snootily. [We'll see how long that lasts after I put you through your paces. As per usual, of course.]
Though Oshawott initially got mad, he then thought how Hilda wouldn't get all wind up like some toy. He smiled with that in mind. [We'll just have to wait and see, won't we?]
Snivy was taken aback by the unusual response he got and smiled slightly in intrigue. This will be more fun than I thought, it seems.
Vanessa cleared his throat to get everyone's attention. "I hope that we are all ready to go. We're awfully eager to see what these rookies can do."
"Well, you all heard the lady," said Cedric, "the battlefield is straight upstairs. I'll lead the way."
With the decision being unanimous, the nine of them began down the hallways straight ahead after the starter Pokemon were recalled to their Poke Balls. Just as they all reached the staircase door at the end of the hallway, Bert cleared his throat to speak up.
"I'm terribly sorry," he began to say, "but Jan and I need to use the restroom for some, er, last-minute unfinished business. Mr. Juniper, could you escort us?"
"By all means, I'd be happy to," said Cedric. "You lead the others upstairs, Aurea, and get things started. We'll catch up soon enough."
With that settled, Aurea opened the staircase door with a key and led the Trainers, Bright and Vanessa upstairs while Cedric turned to lead Bert and Jan down another hallway where the men and women's bathroom were close by.
"I hope we're not being such a bother," asked Jan.
"Think nothing of it," said Cedric. "When you gotta go, you gotta go." He took out a ring with keys on them and began searching for the right one while Jan reached into her pocket and took out a tiny vile. "Ah, here we are," he said as he found the corrected key and used it to unlock the doors. He swung around to tell the inspectors that they were allowed it when Jan sprayed a perfume in his face that made him fall to the floor out-cold. His body stopped the bathroom door from closing.
"Out like a light," Bert sighed. He took out a tablet phone to dial a number and contact other associates of his. "Simon, Sammy, Phase One of Operation Lab Rats has been completed. Standby for Phase Two…"
"The battle between Cheren Blakely and Bianca Whitley will soon be underway," announced Aurea as she stood on the sidelines acting as referee. "Trainers, get ready to send out your Pokemon!"
Bianca took in a deep breath and exhaled deeply, holding Tepig's Poke Ball in her hand as she looked right at Cheren across from her on the vast battlefield. She was confident that she'd win with Tepig's fire-type moves being super effective against grass-type Snivy but knowing Cheren, he'd have a clever trick up his sleeve. Not to mention that strategizing wasn't really her strongest suit...
Behind the Professor, Hilda, Bright and Vanessa each sat on folding chair to view the battle with Oshawott out of his Poke Ball and sitting on Hilda's lap to watch the battle along with her.
"This match begins now!" shouted Aurea.
"Go, Tepig!" yelled Bianca as she unlocked her Poke Ball and held it out so Tepig could burst out onto the battlefield.
Tepig snorted and flared his nostrils with determination, trying to look cool for Bianca. [Let's heat things up.] He didn't notice Hilda rolling her eyes yet smiling at his cheesy one-liner (or at least how her mind translated it).
"Showtime, Snivy!" yelled Cheren as he held his Poke Ball out to let Snivy out onto the battlefield as well.
Snivy folded his arms haughtily and sniffed at the sight of Bianca and Tepig. [Hardly a challenge, if you ask me. But if I must, I guess a tiny workout isn't so bad.]
Hilda groaned as such blatant arrogance. "Is he always like this?" she asked Oshawott, whispering. "There's being a cartoony snob and then there's this."
[I'm afraid so,] replied Oshawott sighing.
Neither one of them saw Vanessa glance at them for a second and wonder why Hilda seemed to talk with her Pokemon. She pondered for a moment on the possibility. Nah, that'd be too freaky of a coincidence. She's probably the imaginative-type.
"Make the first move, Bianca," offered Cheren, looking stoic to reveal little emotion like a poker face. "My treat."
"Thanks, Cheren," replied Bianca, jubilantly before thinking to herself. One Flame Charge and one Ember oughta do it. This is almost too easy. "Tepig, Flame Charge!"
Carrying out his Trainer's orders, Tepig charged up his internal fire power and then began his mad dash as a fiery aura surrounded him, making him look like a streaking comet. He headed straight for Snivy who was standing by for his Cheren's orders.
"Gotcha," Cheren said under his breath before shouting at the top of his lungs. "Snivy, elevate yourself with your vines now!"
In a swift yet calculated maneuver, Snivy had his vine protrude from under his yellow shoulder growths and had them push down on the ground so he could rise straight up into the air. He did so just a couple of seconds before Tepig could strike and the Fire Pig Pokemon raced below him, missing the target. Bianca was shocked speechless by such a tactic as was Tepig who stopped his attack, making the fiery aura dissipate, to look back in befuddlement. Snivy used his vines to lower himself down onto the floor with distance from Tepig just as Cheren issued out his next order.
Snivy stretched out his left vine further towards Tepig who was still in a state of shock and began to wrap it around the pig's torso. Bianca tried to warn her Pokemon but it was far too late. Tepig found himself squeezed around the belly and hoisted up into the air as he flailed his legs, trying to get loose with little results.
"Jeez louise," grimaced Hilda. "Cheren's not holding back even against Bianca."
Oshawott gulped as recollections of being beaten by Snivy flashed in his mind. [And Snivy's as ruthless as ever...] He was still unsure if Hilda could help him win and watching this wasn't helping.
"By the way, Jan," said Bert as he walked down the hallways with his partner. "Thanks for the save back in the lobby. If they recognized me, it would've been all over."
"I was just seeing to it that our mission doesn't falling apart," replied Jan before making a teasing smile. "Although, that Bianca was pretty cute like you said."
"Yeah, a cute pain in the ***, to be exact," grumbled Bert. "If you had her as your sister, you'd know. Anyhow, we have a job to do so let's cut the chatter and focus."
Jan sighed and rolled her eyes. "Sir yes sir."
Upon arriving at a metal dual-doorway labeled "Pokemon Storage Room," Bert took out an ID card he stole from an unconscious Cedric and swiped it in the card reader by the door, wearing gloves to protect his fingerprints and, subsequently, his identity.
When the door closed behind them, the lights switched on to let Bert and Jan observe their surroundings better. On their right was a big computer monitor and control panal that seemed embedded in the wall. The computer itself seemed to be on sleep mode after being used recently, displaying its Patrat-themed screensaver. Looking to their left was something they swallowed hard at. There were three wide shelves, each one of them holding twenty Poke Balls that each contained a Pokemon meant for the purposes of research. The two glared at the "disgusting" sight.
"Let's not waste any more time," Bert replied with a very stern look on his face. "Jan, start collecting each and every Poke Ball and I'll get the transfer all set up."
While Jan walked over to take every Poke Ball on the shelves, Bert went over to the computer and pressed a key to get it out of sleep mode. The screen lit up but displayed only a password engine to be filled out. Bert typed in the letters, spelling out "IDUNNOAUDINO" and hit the enter key to access the Desktop screen. He then moved the arrow over to click an icon that opened a window that accessed the Pokemon Transfer System. He used his tablet phone to call Simon and Sammy.
"Are you two ready?" said Bert with a commanding tone of voice.
"Ready and waiting, Bert," replied Simon from the other end.
"Just connect with our signal and start the transfer," added Sammy, cheerful as usual.
Bert looked at the window on the screen and saw a GPS of the nearest signal to start a connection with. After typing in a few keys, a connection was established and a plastic cover opened up to reveal a hole to place a Poke Ball in for the transfer.
"I'm all set over here, Jan," said Bert. "You?"
"Way ahead of you," said Jan as she held a bag with many of the Poke Balls. She had one in hand and moved over to insert it into the transfer hole. She whispered, "Don't worry, little guy. You'll be safe soon."
Come on, Bianca! Hilda thought intensely. Have Tepig used Ember right at Snivy! A Trainer should not hesitate this much! Unfortunately, as a bystander, she could give Bianca any sort of heads up when she was in an official battle. Not without an automatic forfeit.
"Cheren, please don't do this!" pleaded Bianca but he cried fell on deaf ears.
"Snivy, Vine Whip now!" Cheren ordered at once.
Stretching his right vine out towards his restrained foe, Snivy had it strike Tepig's face back and forth to attack. All Tepig could do was let his foe smack him as Snivy's left vine would not loosen one bit no matter how much he struggled. Of course, a fire-type like him wouldn't be affected by a grass-type attack like Vine Whip so much but if Bianca couldn't help him get out of this jam, he'd be done for eventually.
[Like I said,] snarked Snivy, sneering while enjoying his foe's plight, [hardly a challenge.]
Bianca was zoo distressed from seeing her Pokemon getting harmed like this that she was at a loss of what to do. Then it hit her like a Bouffalant stampede and her face made a determined expression once more. "Ember!"
Tepig heard the order loud and clear and couldn't have been more relieved. He snorted in deep as he built up as much fire power as he could, tilting his head back just when Snivy saw what he was doing, making him stop whipping his vines. Aiming well and moving his head forth, Tepig shot small fireballs right out of his nostrils (some of which were his snot) right towards Snivy who reflexively ducked. However, Snivy's tail was hit dead on which made him wince and loosen his grip on Tepig. The pig was able to escape at last and landed back on the floor, still able to see the fight though yet the whipping pain still lingered.
"Hurry up and use-" Bianca began to say before Cheren cut her off.
Snivy didn't waste a second in his attack and his little legs moved him very swiftly towards Tepig. Once close enough, he leaped up into the air above Tepig who looked up in awe and spun around fast to create a cyclone of green glowing leaves (or at least what looked like leaves) around him. The Fire Pig Pokemon was engulfed by the twister which lifted him up into it to toss and spin him about. Eventually, it dissipated with Tepig landing on the floor roughly and Snivy landing gracefully.
Worried for her Pokemon, Bianca took out her Pokedex to check Tepig's stats and was shocked to see that he was almost done for. "No..." she muttered before holding her hair in frustration. "Come on! Why can't I be fast enough?"
Tepg managed to stand back up and saw how sad Bianca looked, making his heart sink at how his Trainer was in a major tizzy. He bit his teeth in frustration, wishing he could do something. It then dawned on him and even though it wasn't really the right thing, drastic times called for drastic measures.
Cheren was nice enough to let Bianca vent a little before she got up, feeling a little better. "Let's finish this battle already. Snivy, Tackle Tepig!"
[Not my idea of a flashy finisher but might as well with this weakling,] said Snivy before he made a dash towards Tepig.
Bianca gasped as her mind raced. Now what? Do I attack or dodge? Who knows what'll happen?
Just as Snivy got close, Tepig curled himself into a ball to soften the impact from Snivy who was pushed back by his own force to his surprise. The pig was still hurt but not as much and still able to fight as he uncurled himself.
"What in the-?!" exclaimed Hilda who was shocked along with Oshawott. Bianca didn't tell her Tepig to use Defense Curl. Or... did she?
Bianca was also surprised to say the least. I don't know why Tepig did that but he saved himself in any case. I don't know if this is right or not but I'm desperate enough either way.
Cheren too was shocked before he composed himself once more. "Snivy, Vine Whip! Make it fast!"
Just as Snivy drew his vines out, Tepig began charging up for a Flame Charge Attack and made a dash for Snivy who also made his move. But as the Grass Snake's vines hit Tepig, the fiery aura singed them both, making him wince and open for attack. Tepig rammed right into Snivy and sent him tumbling back to Cheren, unable to battle anymore. Tepig stopped to see that he won, feeling tall, tired and triumphant.
The face of exasperation Cheren made was indescribably priceless. "What- the hell just happen?"
"Snivy has fainted and can no longer continue," declared Aurea. "The victory goes to Bianca and her Tepig."
Bianca could hardly believe it at first but soon, a bright happy smile formed on her face as it all started to sink in. "You really did it!" she cheered as she ran onto the battlefield to scoop up Tepig and give him a big cheek-to-cheek hug, feeling his toasty warm body. "I'm sorry I put you through all that but I'm so glad that you pulled through just for me."
Tepig smiled as well, feeling great that he was able to make Bianca as happy as she could be.
Snivy was still shaken from his sudden defeat as he got up. [Well, color me surprised,] he said, trying to keep his ego in check.
"Alright, Snivy," said Cheren, taking out the Poke Ball, "return and rest for now." His words were recognized by the Poke Ball and the red recall beam hit Snivy, converting him into energy that the ball took in. He went over to Bianca and Tepig, not hugging anymore, across the battlefield. "Well, that was quite the gambit you pulled off there. You were pretty clever to give Tepig a few orders ahead of time incase you were really in trouble."
"I did?" said Bianca before realizing what she should say. "I mean, of course, I did. It pays to be prepared."
Tepig looked up, feeling a bit hurt that his trainer was taking all the credit but could understand why. While not against any rules, trained Pokemon attacking on their own in official battles wasn't really smiled upon.
"Anyhow, you were pretty neat yourself, to say the least," Bianca began to say when Hilda caught her off-guard with a surprise hug from behind, making her yelp.
"That was so awesome, Bianca!" praised Hilda as she embraced her BFF tightly. "You turned that match around in no time flat."
[Great job, Tepig!] yelled Oshawott as he ran up to give Tepig a high hoof on an excellent victory. [That Snivy never knew what hit him,] the Sea Otter Pokemon said gleefully.
"You certainly blew me away as well," said Aurea Juniper as she stepped over to the three Trainer. She turned over to the sidelines to where Bright and Vanessa were. "What were your-" she paused upon seeing the two "inspectors" were sleeping on the job, "-thoughts?"
The two were snoring soundly when they awoke abruptly, realizing that what they were doing.
"Um, great battle, you two," stammered Bright. "Real champion material there. No doubt about it."
"We were just resting our eyes after a rough night," Vanessa hastily added. She and Bright stood up and began to head for the doorway. "Now if you excuse us, we have a private call to make. Just a few minutes and we'll be good." They left the room and closed the door behind them.
"There's something odd about those two," said Aurea, feeling suspicious but decided to forget about it. "Anyways, the next match will be decided once your Pokemon are healed properly."
While Bright stood guard by the door, Vanessa moved down the hallway a tad to contact Bert and Jan on her tablet phone.
"Hey, boss," said Vanessa. "The first battle is done. Hilda will be fighting in the next battle so when that Oshawott of her's is weakened in the process, we'll swipe it away from her and join you once you're done."
"That's good news," replied Bert. "We're halfway done down here and we'll all rendezvous at the back exit downstairs. Oh, and for the last time, call me Bert. 'Boss' makes you sound like some thug off the streets."
Vanessa cleared her throat indignantly at her leader's remark.
"Oh," Bert said awkwardly, "right. Sorry about that last part. Anything else to report?"
"Well," Vanessa began to say, "I did notice how Hilda seemed to be talking with her Pokemon."
"Come again?" asked Bert in confusion.
"I noticed it too," added Bright. "Her Oshawott spoke in its own language and Hilda seemed to reply like she understood what it said. You don't think she could be related to... him, do you?"
"It could've been your imaginations or her just being cute with her Pokemon," suggested Bert before he was heard muttering to himself. "But then again, I did have my own suspicions back then."
"Did you say something, Boss?" asked Vanessa.
"Um, nothing you needed to hear," said Bert, trying to cover his tracks. "Get back in the room and wait until the time is right to strike. And stop calling me 'Boss.' Over and out!"
Bright and Vanessa stepped back inside the battle room where they found Bianca sitting in Hilda's chair with Tepig resting in his Poke Ball as they themselves sat down. On the battlefield, Hilda and Oshawott were on the left side while Cheren and Snivy were on the right side, each trainer staring straight at each other with a competitive look in their eye.
Snivy folded his arms with smug and confidence, feeling rejuvenated after eating an Oran Berry and looking forward to working Oshawott over. After his recent embarrassing loss, he felt that taking the twerp to the cleaner would make up for it with interest. Oshawott, however, was shivering fearfully about just that as he knew how cruel Snivy could be all too well. He tapped Hilda's leg to get her to look down to him.
[C-couldn't we battle Bianca and Tepig instead?] asked Oshawott with his usual timidness.
Hilda sighed with a solemn look on her face and squatted down to look Oshawott in the eye. "Yes, we could but it's fine time you faced your demons and stand up to this bully of yours. Even if we don't win now, I assure you that Snivy will get a run for his money and you won't be his punching bag anymore. Just remember what I told you and follow my orders. As the saying goes, we won't know unless we try."
Oshawott looked right back at Hilda and saw how she meant every word she said. He recalled the pep talk she gave him at the park and the vow he made then. He couldn't go back on his word, especially when they came this far. Just then, his train of thought was rudely interrupted.
[Could you stow the motivation speech away for later?] Snivy said condescendingly as he stepped away from Cheren and onto the battlefield. [I'd like to pummel the squirt as soon as possible. And don't think that your Trainer will make a lick of difference, Water Boy.]
Hearing that jab at Hilda, Oshawott frowned and turned to look right at Snivy with a stoic face, determined to prove him wrong. [Alright, Hilda,] he said as he stepped away from Hilda and walk onto the battlefield. He pushed all of his fears to the furtherest corners of his mind the best he could. [I'll give a shot and put my faith in you. Of course, I'll do my best too.] He turned to shoot a determined grin at Hilda who returned fire.
Hilda looked straight at Cheren. "I hope you don't hold back for our sake, Cheren."
"Wouldn't even dream of it, Hilda," Cheren replied. "Now let's stop beating around the bush already."
Seeing that everything was set, Aurea made the call. "The battle will now begin with Cheren having the first move!"
Not wanting to end the battle so soon, Cheren decided to start out small. "Tackle him, Snivy!"
Snivy started to move swiftly towards Oshawott, determined to make a direct hit, when Hilda barked out her order at that moment.
"Whip your tail back and forth, Oshawott!"
Oshawott sighed in embarrassment and turned around to face his back at the incoming Snivy to wag his tail from side to side. Seeing this made Snivy baffled as he slowed down to a stop to see just what the heck his opponent was doing. Even Cheren had little words to say about the ridiculous gesture, being flabbergasted as well yet finding Oshawott's move familiar.
Snivy chuckled a bit. [You know, I was aware of how weak you were but I thought that you'd put up more of a fight here. Or is this your sign of an unconditional surrender?]
"Hardly," said Hilda, smirking triumphantly before shouting out her next order. "Water Gun! Quick!"
Oshawott quickly swerved around while taking in a deep breath and building up power to blast Snivy with a concentrated column of water. Snivy tried to stand his ground but was pushed back and was getting weaken due to the force. The blast eventually ceased but the grass-type Pokemon had been hit hard by the Water Gun attack.
[But that was a Water-type attack] said Snivy, panting in pain and in disbelief. [How did you hit me so hard?]
Noticing how Snivy seemed to had been more weakened, Cheren was confused too when it hit him, making his eyes go wide. "Snivy, be careful! They-"
"Tackle him, Oshawott!" Hilda interrupted loudly.
Oshawott made a mad dash for Snivy and hit his opponent directly. Snivy was sent tumbling back towards Cheren and felt even weaker due to the impact.
"Don't pay attention to them, Snivy," ordered Cheren. "Vine Whip!"
Snivy drew out his vines to stretch them out to strike down on Oshawott when he instinctively took off his Scalchop to form his Shell Blade and swiftly deflect each strike, hurting Snivy a bit.
"Another Tail Whip!" ordered Hilda.
Oshawott, still holding his Scalchop, turned around to wag his tail back and forth, annoying Snivy again.
[Okay, seriously,] Snivy said, disgruntled. [That's starting to get on my nerves! Stop it!]
"As you wish," Hilda replied. "Throw your Razor Shell!"
After reforming the Shell Blade's shape from straight to curved, Oshawott turning around to throw the Scalchop right at Snivy as it spun in the air like a boomerang. Snivy was struck by it and with his defense power lowered more, the hit hurt more than it should've. The Scalchop meanwhile returned to Oshawott with the Shell Blade now dissipated and he placed it back on his bellybutton.
"One more strike and it's all over," said Hilda. "We're almost there, Oshawott."
His poker face faltering, Cheren checked his Pokedex to see that Snivy's battle power had gone down a lot. "Dammit. Now what?" he muttered to himself when he realized that he never saw Snivy's fourth move, having slipped his mind until now. "Let's see." He brought up the list of moves and saw an attack name that gave him an idea to turn things around.
Snivy staggered up, mustering up the stamina to carry on. [Cheren, now would be a good time to turn things around and fast. I am NOT losing to that squirt.]
"Here goes," Cheren sighed before shouting, "Snivy, move in close to Oshawott!"
[This better work,] grunted Snivy as he ran towards his opponent who was just standing there, bracing himself.
I didn't hear Cheren say a specified move, Hilda thought. What is he up too?
"Leer!" commanded Cheren loudly.
Getting in close enough, Snivy looked Oshawott right in the eye and a glint was enough to make Oshawott shudder all over, dropping his defenses. Before Hilda could say anything at all, Cheren cut her off.
Hearing the magic word, Snivy sped up and rammed right into Oshawott, making him slide on the floor back to Hilda painfully. Hilda gulped when she realized that Cheren figured out her previous ploy and how to use it himself. She looked at her Pokedex to see that Oshawott's Battle Power had a big bite taken out of it. Things did not look good but she wasn't about to turn tail and run just yet.
Snivy sniffed and smiled egotistically as he watched Oshawott struggle to stand back up, panting all the way. [That should even things out for now. Sorry to burst your bubble, Water Boy, but your luck has officially run dry.]
"Leaf Tornado!" ordered Cheren.
[Told you so,] sneered Snivy as he leaped up high into the air and began to spin around. A green cyclone of green glowing leaves formed around him as he controlled it to go after Oshawott.
Unable to strategize properly, Hilda told the Oshawott the one thing that came to mind. "Beat it! Don't even stop to catch your breath!"
All too glad to comply, Oshawott ran to his right to avoid the attack but Snivy pressed on by pursuing his foe with the Leaf Tornado. Oshawott ran about on the battlefield in random directions, hoping to wear him out, but Snivy was determined to finish his opponent off. Cheren made a cocky smirk, seeing how he had Hilda on the ropes.
Hilda all the while was trying to figure out a way out of this jam when she noticed something. Whenever Snivy formed the Leaf Tornado, he was in the center or rather "eye of the storm" and Pokemon that got engulfed into it would pass him by while being hit by the leaves. And Oshawott's Torrent would kick in when low on battle power... It's risky but it just might work, she pondered. Looking back on the battlefield, she saw Oshawott slowing down and the cyclone catching up to his horror. Not that I have much of a choice. It's do or die now.
The grass cyclone engulfed Oshawott who was lifted up and spun about in it. Despite being battered by the leaves, he was able to hear what Hilda had to say.
And like that, Oshawott knew what she had in mind and took off his Scalchop, held it with both paws and formed the Shell Blade as he got closer to Snivy. With all his might and endurance, Oshawott delivered a sharp slash to Snivy that caused him to lose control of the cyclone and make it dissipate instantaneously. Both Pokemon dropped to the ground hard and could not carry on the fight, pushed to their very limits. Falling out of his grip, Oshawott's Scalchop dropped and skidded across the battlefield which caught Cheren's eye.
"Both Pokemon can no longer battle!" announced Aurea. "It's a tie!"
Overjoyed, Bianca happily leaped from her chair and ran over to Hilda who was sighing in relief before she saw her best friend come towards her. "Way to go, Hilda!" cheered Bianca, waving her hand in the air. She exchanged a high five with Hilda upon reaching her. "You really had me worried there but you still pulled through."
"Thanks, Bianca," said Hilda as she turned to look at Oshawott laying on his front in exhaustion and smile proudly. "But I don't deserve all the credit here."
Oshawott struggled to stand back up but fell flat on his back in the process, panting to catch his breath. As he looked up at the ceiling, he heard Hilda's footsteps coming towards him and could help but feel a little nervous. He saw Hilda stopping as she tilted her head down to look at her Pokemon. As she squatted down, Oshawott was relieved to see her beam a warm smile down on him.
"We did it, Oshawott," said Hilda joyfully. "We may not have really won but we showed Snivy what we were made of and even defeated him. It's like I said: we won't know unless we try. We tried and now we know."
Hearing all this managed to make Oshawott smile out of genuinely happiness and give him the strength to stand back up and look back at his Trainer with admiration. His doubt about Hilda and himself no longer plagued and he now felt better than even before. His future was uncertain but he wasn't afraid to figure out what he could do. And with Hilda's guidance, it was looking very bright indeed.
[Well, how about that?] said Snivy, his body bruised along with his ego as he laid on the floor. [He actually managed to do it.]
"Sorry for the second loss, Snivy," said Cheren as he came up to his starter and recalled him into the Poke Ball. He made a grim expression on his face. "Two losses in a row. This doesn't feel right..."
"A very nice display of skill, you three," Aurea announced. "I wish you all luck on your journey."
Bright and Vanessa stood up to walk over and clapped their hands so they could get everyone's attention, cliched as it was. "I agree, Professor," said Vanessa. "You three have great potential as Trainers. Especially you, Hilda. Your last minute save was very ingenious."
"Unfortunately, we'll have to relieve you of your Oshawott," said Bright as he reached into his right pocket. "Nothing personal, it's just for your own good."
Everyone was baffled by what Bright had just said and he took full advantage of it. He took out the Capsule from his Pocket and pushed the button so it'd become a Net Launcher. He pressed the buttons on the handles he held as a net burst out and ensnared Oshawott to everyone's further shock. Neither Hilda, Cheren, Bianca, Aurea or even Oshawott could properly process what just happened.
[Hey, let me outta here,] wailed Oshawott as he struggled in the net. Not only was it made out of strong materials but he was also very weak and exhausted at the moment.
"Well, that about wraps everything up," said Vanessa as she took a black ball out of her pocket. "Ta-ta for now!" She threw the ball as it exploded, making everyone jump from the shock and spreading smoke everywhere to cover their escape. "Let's beat it," she told Bright as they headed for the door with Oshawott in the net.
[Hilda! Help me!]
Hilda heard her friend's cries through the smoke and the automatic door opening and closing. In a burst of adrenaline, she made a dash for the doorway, recalling where it was despite the smoke, and sprinted into the hallway, determined to save Oshawott at all costs. Cheren, Bianca and Aurea followed behind as well, hoping to see to it that Oshawott is safe.
"Stop!" shouted Hilda, looking positively livid and baring her teeth. "You let my friend go NOW!"
"They're gaining on us," said Bright, looking behind. "Better suit up fast or things could get messy."
Vanessa nodded in agreement as they both rolled their sleeves back slightly to reveal a watch. They each pressed button on its sides and a bizarre knight-esque outfit materialized on themselves over their clothes. This came as yet another surprise to their pursuers but they weren't letting up. Hilda especially.
"Bianca, Tepig, NOW!" Hilda commanded in the most rage filled tone of voice she even used.
Though intimidated, Bianca saw it fit to comply given how mad Hilda clearly was and took out Tepig's Poke Ball. "Tepig, Flame Charge!" She unlocked the Poke Ball to let Tepig out as began his attack.
However, Vanessa stopped and turned as she took out her own Poke Ball. "Go on ahead and bust down the stairway door," she told Bright as he went on ahead of her while she held out her Poke Ball. "Roggenrola, stop them with Harden!"
Roggenrola burst out of his Poke Ball and, as per Vanessa's orders, make his short, rocky body even harder to block Tepig as he struck him and stopped in his tracks, the impact barely affecting Roggenrola. Tepig pressed onwards against Roggenrola but the Mantle Pokemon stood his ground, not budging a inch.
"Rock Blast!" ordered Vanessa.
Bianca gasped hearing those words. "Tepig, pull out!" she frantically shouted.
It was too late. Roggenrola's "head" glowed and produced silvery shockwaves from it that were as solid as actual rocks. At a close-range and a type disadvantage, Tepig was blown back towards Bianca on impact and defeated in a One Hit Knock Out. Bianca grimly recalled Tepig, sad how he was hurt so much in so little time. Nobody else moved given how defenseless they were. Cheren's Snivy was exhausted and Aurea had no Pokemon on her at the moment.
"Sorry about that," apologized Vanessa. "I swear you'll thank us later." Just then, she and everyone else heard the sound of a door being busted down and turned to see that Bright has his Timburr do just that.
"What are waiting for?" Bright called out to his partner as he recalled Timburr. "Let's get back to the campsite and fast!"
Vanessa recalled Roggenrola back into his Poke Ball and rushed towards the staircase with Bright. Oshawott cried out for help again, prompting Hilda to continue chasing after them with Bianca, Cheren and Aurea following her too. They ran as fast as they could down the stairs and turned to their left where they saw the two faux-inspectors rendezvous with Bert and Jan who were in similar knight-esque getups.
"Hey, stop!" shouted Hilda furiously.
The four knights dashed into a hallway that lead to the backdoor at the very end and together, they rammed it off its hinges and ran out towards the woods straight ahead. Hilda, Bianca, Cheren and Aurea continued their pursuit and were gaining on them but that wasn't about to last.
"We're heading back to the campsite! Everyone, ready your Jetpack Capsules," ordered Bert as he took out a capsule along with everyone else. "NOW!"
They all pushed the button on the Capsule and held it to their shoulders so it'd form into a fully-fueled Jetpack that was strapped to them already. Each knight pressed a button on their left strap to activate the engines and jumped up to take flight over the trees. Hilda and the others stopped in amazement as they watched them flew away. Oshawott was shocked by this and thrashed about in the net, crying out for help.
That was the last thing Hilda heard before the four knight blasted off until they were out of sight. Grief-stricken, she sank to her knees and felt on her hands as the cold harsh reality of it all crashed down on her. Oshawott was taken from her. Tears welled up in her eyes despite how hard she tried to hold them back and her heavy breathing turned into crying. Ultimately, she let out a scream of frustration, cursing how she let this happen before finally sobbing.
Cheren, Bianca and Aurea were hesitant to approach Hilda given how they weren't sure what they could say to console her.
Aurea finally broke the silence after about half a minute. "I'll go find my father and try to raise the police. You three come with me."
Cheren and Bianca turned around to walk back towards the lab with Aurea when they looked back and were surprised to see Hilda walking towards the woods.
"Hilda," Cheren said in a meek but shocked voice. This got the attention of Hilda who turned to shoot him a tear-streaked face. "Y-you're not actually thinking of-"
Hilda's sad face changed into a frown as she turned back towards the woods. "Do yourselves a favor and save your breath," she said harshly. "I'm saving Oshawott and that's that." With that said, she sprinted right into the woods in the direction she believed the knight flew off too.
"Hilda, wait!" cried Bianca.
"You idiot!" cursed Cheren, more mad than sad. "You'll be killed!"
"You two go get Hilda while my dad and I get the police!" ordered Aurea. "Hurry! There's not a moment to lose!"
The two Trainers nodded in agreement and ran after their friend while the Professor turned around to rush back to the laboratory.
How the hell did things turn out this way? What is this all about?
Author's note: All done. Although I feel this got a tad rush towards the end, I hope you manage to like this for what it's worth and tell me what you think. Again, I'm still learning the ropes so any advice you can offer would be much appreciated.
I refer to Professor Juniper and her father as Aurea and Cedric because I want to avoid as much confusion as possible when addressing them.
Here we're introduced to four members of Team Plasma's Seventh Squadron. We learn hints of Bert, Bright and Vanessa's past already. Jan, Simon and Sammy are to follow soon.
Cedric makes an early appearance because... well, I like him a lot. I like his upbeat fatherly type of character.
Pokemon: The Black & White Adventure: 14 year old Hilda is a Pokemon Trainer with a secret: she can talk to Pokemon. After setting off into Unova with her starter, she gets involved in the affairs of Team Plasma and becomes acquainted with N, a mysterious guy her age with the exact same abilities as her. While enjoying her life, a tangled web of mystery is weaved around her and the reveal may shock her beyond belief.
Join the adventure by clicking the link above. Read & Review.
Author's Note: Here we get a closer look at the Seventh Squadron and meet the techie twins, Simon Allison and Samantha "Sammy" Allison. Meanwhile, Hilda and the others devise a plan to get back Oshawott and the lab Pokemon with the help of another forest friend...
Chapter 3: For The Birds
"Good lord, I hate it when they put up a fight," groaned Bright. He was trying to hold onto the net but Oshawott flailed and thrashed about in attempt to escape, even trying to bite the durable ropes. Managing that and keeping a grip on his jetpacks handles proved to be challenging to say the least. He was at least glad he recapsulized the net launcher and detached the net from it.
[Lemme out!] shouted Oshawott, shaking the net up. [Let! Me! OUT! Give me back to Hilda! Now!]
"Oh, for the love of..." sighed an sleepy and irritated Vanessa as he veered in closer to Bright and looked straight at Oshawott sternly. "Look, squirt. You're about 30 or so feet up in the air and Bright's exhausted as all hell. So unless you fancy yourself a accidental 30 foot drop that I doubt even you could survive, chill out and shut up!"
Oshawott felt intimidated by Vanessa as the hopelessness of his situation began to sink in. He lost his freedom, he lost his Scalchop, he lost Hilda whom he was truly beginning to love as a Trainer, he lost everything at once. Tears began to well up in his eyes as he started to cry like a baby to everybody's displeasure. [It's... not... fair...] he managed to say through all the sobbing.
"Well, thank you, Vanessa," quipped Bright sarcastically. "I was hoping my ears would bleed."
"Well, can you blame a girl for trying?" retorted Vanessa.
"Funny thing is, I can. And I will. Remind me not to let you babysit any kids of mine."
"You? Kids? Not even in your dreams-"
"I'd hate to interrupt your regularly scheduled lover's quarrel," said Bert, flying up ahead with Jan and irritated by the banter behind them, "but we're almost at the campsite. Wouldn't want to smack into the forcefield, now would you?" He pointed straight ahead at a wide-open field that was custom-made for anyone planning to rough it out which they rented. He was referring to the transparent forcefield produced by a satellite tower powered by a generator that they set up in the center and could see meters away.
"No, boss, we wouldn't" Bright and Vanessa grumbled while eying each other viciously. Thankfully, Oshawott's sobbing was beginning to settle down as he just laid in the net very melancholy.
"Good," said Bert. He pressed a button to stop and just hover with others following suit as they were now near the forcefield protecting their campsite. "And for the last time, don't call me boss. Jan, get Simon and Sammy on the horn ASAP. I can't reach my cell like this."
"Already on that, sweetie," replied Jan as she took out her tablet phone from her chest pocket. She looked down at the campsite where two people were each working at a laptop computer on desks connected to the satellite tower while facing away from each other. "Simon, Sammy, make an opening in the shield for us. We're coming in for a landing."
"Right away, Jan."
In a few seconds, the transparent shield was now more visible as a hole opened up in it for the four Knights to ease their way down through it. When they landed on the ground and recapsulized their jetpacks, the hole closed and the shield was hardly visible again.
"Honey, we're home," quipped Bright comically.
Bert walked over to Simon, the young man wearing a T-shirt, shorts and glasses. "Did you the Pokemon we sent?"
"Yeah, all sixty of them," said Simon. He pointed to a Capsule container filled with thirty Poke Balls right by his desk and then to the box of Poke Balls near Sammy's desk. "Sammy and I split the balls into two container since they could hold only so many. As for the Transfer machine, well..." He took a pair of pliers to pick up a Capsule that was smoking from overheating. "...we really put it through it's paces. Hope this doesn't come out of my allowance."
"Excellent. We're on a pretty tight schedule as it is," said Bert. "We have about an hour until the Shadow Triad show up and every minute counts."
Meanwhile, Sammy was sneaking a peak at her Facebook account when she saw Oshawott in the corner of her eye while Bright and Vanessa were talking. She turned her head to see it better and saw that he was calm yet somber as he hung around in Bright's net.
"Oh. My. God," squealed Sammy as she got up to get a closer look at Oshawott. "It's even cuter up close." She looked up to Bright and Vanessa with sweet Deerling eyes and spoke in the more adorable voice ever. "Oh, please, oh, please, let me watch it for you guys. Pretty please?"
Put off by the cutesy-wootsy act, Bright and Vanessa caved in at once. "Go ahead and keep an eye on him," said Bright as he handed the net to Sammy.
"And take this to better confine him," said Vanessa, handing over a cage Capsule to Sammy. "He can stretch his flipper better like that and he's too weak to bust out. Just be careful if he cries again"
"Aw, the poor thing's just scared as all," cooed Sammy as she went back to her desk and brought out the cage on it. She then opened the cage and took Oshawott out of the net to put him in the cage where he solemnly didn't put up any fight, knowing it'd be futile if they had Pokemon. "Cheer up, little Wotter," Sammy said brightly, kindly taking note of Oshawott's plight as she locked the door. "You'll feel so much better once you're rehabilitated for the wild. No more humans bossing you around during battles. You'll be your own Mon then."
Oshawott sniffed as he faced away from Sammy. [But... I want Hilda...]
"That'll be enough of that, Sammy," said Bert as he took out a Capsule. "You and Simon are to analyze the lab Pokemon one by one as per Ghetsis's orders." He pressed the button and gave the Capsule a toss so it could burst and become a small cabin. "Jan, Bright and Vanessa, you three join me in delivering our report to Ghetsis himself."
"Yes, boss!" Bright, Vanessa and even Jan responded with as they saluted. Jan smiling mischievously as Bert made a stern frown.
"Not you too, Jan."
"Dad, where are you?" shouted Professor Aurea Juniper as she ran back into the laboratory, hoping desperately that the so-called "inspectors" hadn't hurt him. She was just passing the bathroom when she heard something on the inside ramming the door. She could hear a familiar voice speaking as well.
"Aurea! Hurry up and open this door!"
"Dad!" she said in surprise. Taking out her set of keys, the Professor quickly put it in the lock to open it up. She pushed the door in open as Cedric fell down to the floor, tied up by the silk of a String Shot attack. "Are you okay?" She reached down to undo his tied up wrists.
"Does it look like I'm okay?" retorted Cedric, clearly in a foul mood all things considered. "Those two phonies knocked me out and had me tied up on the John. The worst part of it was that I really had to go. What about you?"
"Well, to make a long story short, the two that came with us took Oshawott," answered Aurea as she undid Cedric's bound wrists and began on his bound ankles. "I don't know where they went but we need to call the cops ASA-now!"
Cedric began to stand back up when he noticed something missing from around his neck and under his shirt. "My ID card?" he asked frantically. "They must've taken it but why?" The answer hit him like a ton of bricks and he gasped. "No, they couldn't have!"
"What's wrong, Dad?" asked Aurea, concerned. "What did they do?"
"Follow me!" yelled Cedric as he made a run for the Pokemon Storage Room with his daughter close behind. Please let me be wrong. Just this one time...
Aurea didn't like how her father was acting out of character like this. Could it be any worse?
When they arrived at the door, Aurea swiped her ID Card in the reader to let themselves in and see the shocking truth. To the right, the computer had been used and to the left, many Poke Balls had been taken just as they had feared. They walked in further horrified and speechless. Aurea went over to the shelves to see how many were taken while Cedric went over to the computer, finding a note taped onto the screen. He gulped as he read it.
"You will no longer subjugate these Pokemon to your cruelty," it read. "In the name of our King, we liberate them from your vile clutches and will help them find solace at last. We pray that you are wise enough to reflect on the error of your ways from here on out." At the very end of the paper was an insignia shaped like a black and white shield with a "P" and backwards "z" on it. The same insignia marked on the Knight-esque uniforms the faux-inspectors donned during their escape.
Bert, Jan, Bright and Vanessa sat on a couch in the cabin's living room to get comfortable and set a tablet computer on the table. Once it was connected to the satellite tower, Bert keystrokes to get in contact with their superior, Ghetsis, who was second only to the King himsef. At last, an audio-only transmission was established and the four heard a voice they knew all too well speaking to them.
"So, I assume all went well," said Ghetsis, his voice distorted on the off-chance someone was intercepting the transmission. "How many did you manage to save?"
"Sixty in all," answered Bert, proudly. "We didn't get them all but it was enough to send a strong message to them." He broke into a yawn before stopping himself on that. "Many apologies, Lord Ghetsis, for my rudeness."
Kissup, Bright mentally groaned whilst rolling her eyes. Vanessa groaned as if to agree with him.
"It's quite alright," responded the Sage. "Your team was awake all last night going over the plan that you hadn't been able to properly rest up. Allow me to suggest that you take this time to fully revitalize yourselves before the Triad arrives in one hour. Consider it a reward for your hard work. Don't worry about the police, I've seen to it that they're kept busy for as long as possible."
"You heard the Sage," said Bright, cheering up and getting up to head upstairs for bed. "Let's catch some Zs already."
"I call the top bunk!" said Vanessa, following her partner.
"Before you two go, I forgot to ask," said Ghetsis abruptly. "Is Oshawott being guarded by Simon and Sammy outside?"
"Yeah, she insisted," answered Jan. "Is something wrong with that?"
"Absolutely not, Jan. As a matter of fact, all is going according to plan..."
As good of a runner she was, Hilda had to stop to catch her breath while leaning on a nearby tree. She wiped the sweat off her brow and panted heavily. She stood straight back up to continue on faster than before when she heard the rustling of running footsteps and sighed solemnly, knowing who was coming. Soon enough, Cheren and Bianca had caught up to their friend and stopped to catch their breath as well.
"That's far enough, Hilda," said Cheren sternly as he panted alongside Bianca. "I know just what you're planning to do and-"
Hilda turned around to face them and cut Cheren off, not in any mood to listen to his usual lecture. "If you're going to spoon feed me that same old 'you're being to reckless and headstrong' spiel, then stow it and just go away." Her harsh tone of voice and furious facial expression was jarring compared to her usual upbeat self and it threw Cheren and Bianca for a loop there even if they knew it well.
"But... Hilda..." Bianca tried to speak up despite how scary her best friend seemed. "Let the police handle this. It's too risky!"
"Oh, I know all the risks," said Hilda, starting out slow but building in fury. "I'm outnumbered, I have no Pokemon or any kind of protection and those thieves could kill me in cold blood. Maybe I could leave this to the police but I can't just willingly sit on my ass while they're doing who knows what to Oshawott. I promised him that I'd help him get stronger if I could and I am NOT going back on my promise if I never see him again." Her fist had clenched up and her teeth gritted as her rage built up more and more. Then tears of sadness flowed from her eyes and she began crying through her anger. "I'd never forgive myself if that happened. Maybe it's stupid, maybe it's the most idiotic thing I've ever done period, but I'm not going to chicken out and let Oshawott just be captured. If you don't like it, fine. Just let me try and be a good friend."
And like that, Cheren had nothing to say. Even though he firmly believe that this whole "superhero" act was foolish, he couldn't say that Hilda didn't have a point and it was clear that she would stubbornly refuse to turn tail and run. Just then, Bianca stepped away from him to walk over to Hilda and take out a handkerchief to wipe the tears from her eyes.
"I help you," said Bianca, turning her frown upside-down out of determination. "We'll get Oshawott back together. I mean, you've help me before many times. Consider this my repayment with interest."
Before Hilda could thank Bianca, Cheren spoke up then and there. "Then I'm coming too," he said to everyone's surprise. "I know what I was trying to say before and all but I might as well see to it that you guys don't get killed. Plus, Oshawott will need this soon." He took out the Scalchop he found on the battlefield from his pocket
Feeling touched as she took the Scalchop, Hilda smiled warmly, glad to have such great friends at a time like this. "Thank you," she said softly. She teared up out of joy as she hugged both of them. "What would I do without you guys?" She caught herself and added on as the hug broke up. "Erm, don't answer that question."
Before any of them could begin to say something else, the ringing of Hilda's X-Transceiver derailed any train of thought they currently had. Seeing the Caller ID said it was from Cedric Juniper, Hilda wasted no time in touching the screen to answer it.
"What is it, Professor? Is something wrong back at the lab?"
The grim look on Cedric's face worsened. "I'm afraid 'wrong' is putting it mildly," he said before moving the arm to aim his X-Tranceiver at the almost empty shelves. "Those other phony inspectors knocked me out and transferred sixty Pokemon we were using for research out of here."
Cheren leaned over next to Hilda along with Bianca to see and were just as shocked at their best friend was.
"So they weren't just after Oshawott," said Cheren.
"I did wonder where that other pair was during our battles," said Bianca.
"Do you know where they sent those Pokemon?" asked Hilda, intensely.
"As luck would have it, we were able to trace the signal where they transferred the Poke Balls," answered Aurea, stepping in to show herself on the screen. "Seems that in their haste, they never bothered to cover their tracks. They're in the woods west of Route 1, specifically a campsite straight ahead from where you guys are."
"Hey, yeah," said Hilda, jogging her memory. "They mentioned a campsite once or twice as they made a run for it. That must be their base of operations."
"They could ready to make a run for it by now," suggested Cheren.
"Or they're looking over what they stole," Bianca put in. "I mean, they were in a rush..."
"That would explain why they haven't taken down their satellite," said Cedric. "If they're doing a thorough job, we may have enough time to act..."
"In that case, let's get the cops to help," suggested Cheren.
"That... might be a problem," Aurea replied. "The whole police force is tied up with a incident in downtown Nuvema. They probably won't be able to respond in time."
"Well, that's oddly inconvenient," said Hilda confusedly. "What do you want us to do?"
"It's risky, desperate move and as a parental figure, I'd abhor it," Cedric started to say, "but I have no choice but to ask for your help in getting the Pokemon and Oshawott back. I won't force it if you don't want to since as Trainers you make your own decisions but-"
"We'll do it," said Hilda. "Hell, we were about to head over there and beat the snot out of them."
Cheren cleared his throat indignantly. "I wouldn't put it like that..."
Aurea smiled. "Guess that saves us the trouble then. We'll help you from here since if those goons return to finish the job, we'll be ready. Although as your teacher, I still believe in you."
"Thanks, Teach," replied Hilda smiling from the compliment along with Cheren and Bianca.
"But wait, how far away is the campsite from here?" asked Bianca curiously. "We might not get there in time even by running for all we know."
"I'd tell you the exact distance I have on my computer but I doubt that'd help unless you could see it from where you are," said Cedric.
That last part of that statement gave Hilda an idea. She looked at their surroundings for a tall tree and as luck would have it, there was one to her right. "I got this covered, Professor," she said as she ran over to the tree and began scaling it like she was an actual Patrat, even using the sturdy branches for help. "It's just like with Watcher and the gang. I might be able to at least spot the cabin from up there. Assuming they brought one via Capsule."
"Somethings never change," sighed Cheren as he and Bianca tilted their heads up while watching Hilda go up higher.
Eventually, Hilda stopped near the top of the tree where she could see above all the rest and had better reception for the X-Transceiver. She stood on a small but study-looking branch as her eyes were drawn almost instantly to the satellite tower dead ahead in the distance as well as a cabin right behind it.
"Professor, I think I found them," said Hilda. She moved her arm so the camera would show Cedric and Aurea the tower. "Take a look."
"No doubt about it," said Cedric. "And it seems to be close enough for you three to get over there in less than twenty minutes or-"
Before Cedric could finish what he was saying, the "study-looking" branch turned out to be be weaker than expected, breaking under Hilda's weight and causing her to fall down towards the ground to everyone's horror. As Hilda screamed bloody murder and fell while hitting some branches, Cheren and Bianca sprung into action in attempt to get into position and catch their friend. Hilda shut her eyes and prepared for the worst but before she hit the ground, a small but powerful whirlwind caught her and gently helped her down to the ground on her feet. Hilda sank to her knees, shaken, shocked but immensely relieved.
Cheren went over with Bianca to help up their friend. "You're not hurt, are you?"
"Hardly," said Hilda, panting. "But whatever that was, it saved my life."
[Just business as usual for me,] chipped a familiar bird-like voice. The source of it made itself known as a gray pigeon-like Pokemon landed on the ground in front of three Trainers. [Aren't you a little old to be climbing up trees, Hilda?]
"Pidove!" exclaimed Hilda as she stepped forth to squat down and see her forest friend. "What are you doing here?"
[Well, I do live in the woods, don't I?] Pidove jokingly quipped, getting a smile out of Hilda. [But anyways, I woke up late for our get-together and when I got there, Herdy said you were already at the lab. So I flew there but I couldn't get inside. When I saw you go into the woods, I flew after you guys and managed to save you in the nick of time.]
Cheren cleared his throat to garner everyone's attention. "Your little reunion is nice and all but we have work to do, remember?"
"Exactly," said Cedric. "Time is of the essence here."
[What's all the hubbub about?] asked Pidove, still in the dark.
"Well, to make a long story short," began Hilda. "My starter, Oshawott, was taken by these thieves who disguised themselves as inspectors for the laboratory and now we have to get him back from the campsite up ahead. We also need to get sixty lab Pokemon they also stole from the Professors and we have to do this while not knowing when they'll leave. You follow?"
[Kinda lost me actually,] said Pidove, struggling to process all the information at once. [But I'll help anyway I can.]
"Glad you said so," said Hilda as an idea formed in her head, "because I know a way you can."
"But how?" asked Bianca.
"Reconnaissance," Cheren started to explain. "Pidove can fly over to the campsite and report back with what he saw. We'll have a far better plan of attack when we know who's there and what to expect."
"And if anyone spots him, they'll think he's just another Pidove with no connection to us," added Hilda before turning back to Pidove. "Think you can do that? You'll know where it is once you spot the satellite tower."
[Consider it done,] said Pidove, confidently before spreading out his wing and flapping them to fly off as fast as he could in the direction of the campsite.
"It would help if you three caught more Pokemon so you'd have greater chances of winning," suggested Aurea. "We have no idea what to expect..."
Pidove didn't either. He flew straight towards the satellite tower and was entering the campsite below when he unexpectedly smacked right into the transparent forcefield that bounced him back. He nearly fell to the ground but he flew right back up, panting from the shock of it all.
What the heck was that? he asked himself in utter confusion as he hovered in the air. It's like a wall but I can't see it anywhere.
Seeing as he couldn't get in, Pidove looked down at the campsite so he could tell Hilda what he saw. He saw a cabin right behind the tower and two big desks in front of it. At said desks, there were two humans, Simon and Sammy, sitting at each one with their backs facing each other as they seemed to be using a laptop (at least, that was what they looked like from what Hilda showed him once).
He also saw a pile of Poke Balls by each of their chairs as they took one and used a device hooked up to their laptops to analyze them one by one before putting them into a box to their right. By the size of the piles, they had quite some time before completing their job. Last but not least, he recognized Oshawott (thanks to a picture Hilda once showed him) in a black cage. With all of that information taken in, Pidove decided to fly back to Hilda, Cheren and Bianca ASAP. Hopefully, he'd remember everything there.
Sammy sighed out of boredom as she held the scanner up to the next Poke Ball and had the data on the Pokemon displayed on the laptop. It felt good to know she was helping the world become a greater place as a noble Knight of Team Plasma but times like these could be tedious at best. After saving the data and putting the Poke Ball in her Capsule box, she heard the growling of Oshawott's stomach and looked at the cage where Oshawott was laying on his side facing away from Sammy to his sad face.
Sammy's heart sank. The poor little guy, she thought. This must be happening to him so fast. She reached into her pocket and took out a plastic bag that contained three fresh Oran Berries which she opened up to take two of them out. She reached over to quickly open up the cage and throw in the two before closing it which got Oshawott's attention.
Curious and hungry, Oshawott sat right back up to take one berry in his paw and looked back at Sammy in confusion.
"Why the long face, cutie pie?" whispered Sammy, smiling softly. "Everything will be just fine once your rehabilitated."
A brief recollection of Hilda flashed in Oshawott's mind thanks to Sammy's sweet-hearted voice and smile and the pain of losing his Trainer so soon returned. He turned around to munch on his berries as tears soaked into his furry face once more. Even if he was replished and busted out of the cage then and there, it would still do him no good and he'd never reach Hilda. Sammy frowned, wondering what she may've done right.
"Don't you have a job to do?" said Simon, having heard enough without having to turn around. "Those Pokemon aren't going to analyze themselves, you know?"
"Oh, right away, Simon!" said Sammy, resuming her duties.
[...and Oshawott was there in a black cage on the left desk,] Pidove finished with his report. [That's about it from me. I don't think I forgot anything.]
"Good, good," said Hilda as she finished up drawing her diagram of the campsite with a pen and notebook Cheren provided. She turned it around to show Pidove what she came up with. "Does this pretty much sum things up?"
[Yeah,] said Pidove. [Well, I think. Hate to be blunt but your artistic skills are pretty bad.]
"We're pressed for time as it is," retorted Hilda, pouting. "Cut me some slack."
"Don't even start, you two," said Aurea. "We have work to do."
"Yes," agreed Cedric. "Considering how much time has passed and how long it'd take for them to analyze each one thoroughly, time is on our side but we can't risk wasting it either. Not to mention that shield poses another problem. Though how they got such technology is anyone's guess."
"They'll have to lower them once they're ready to go," suggested Cheren. "Assuming they do that first before anything else."
"Yeah," said Bianca, perking up. "We can ambush them together and get those Capsule boxes once they're filled. Hopefully, the other four won't come out until it's too late."
"Although we could very well set a trap for them at the lab if they pursued," pondered Aurea. "Even better if I can get a hold of the cops in time."
"Then it's settled," said Hilda. "Though it's best that we got more Pokemon on our side. Where's Watcher when you need?"
[Well, I did see Herdy and Lilly due northwest as I flew back from the campsite,] suggested Pidove. [I'm sure they'd be willing to lend a wing. I mean, paw.]
"Great idea!" complimented Hilda before turning over to Cheren and Bianca. "You two go northwest to get Herdy and Lily. It'll be a lot easier to get Pokemon we already know on our side. I'll go to the campsite with Pidove and keep watch if they stop analyzing the Poke Balls earlier than we expect. If anything happens, I'll call right away if there's any reception in that part."
"Got it," said Cheren and Bianca before heading northwest while Hilda went straight ahead to the campsite as fast as she could.
Hang in there, Oshawott. It won't be much longer now.
"Herdy! Lilly!" Cheren and Bianca shouted for what seemed like more than ten minutes as they trudge through the woods. Snivy and Tepig accompanied them to protect them from any Pokemon in the mood to pick a fight with them.
"C'mon now," groaned a frustrated Cheren as he stopped to rest. "They must've picked us up with their sharp hearing. We haven't got all day."
"I just hope Pidove didn't mean 'northeast,'" said Bianca, stopping to catch her breath as well. No sooner did she stop talking, a speedy little Pokemon ran up to tackle her, pushing her down to the ground to everyone's surprise. She literally didn't know what hit her until she felt Lilly's affectionate licking. "Hey! Easy there, girl!"
Wanting to help his Trainer, Tepig gritted his teeth and actually flared his nostrils intimidatingly. [Hey! Get offa my Trainer!]
Bianca held Lilly in her hand as the spritely little Lillipup wagged her tail cheerfully. "It's okay, Tepig. It's just Lilly, remember. She's one of Hilda's Pokemon friends and a good one of mine too." She got her green beret that fell to the ground back on her head.
[Oh,] said Tepig, calming down. [Never mind.]
[Such a hothead,] snarked Snivy, rolling his eyes with disdain.
[Hey, Lilly! Where's you run off to?] barked Herdy as he arrived at the scene. [Hey, Cheren, Bianca! What are you doing here? I thought I smelled a familiar scent.]
"It's a long story, Herdy, so just hear us out," said Cheren before explaining the whole thing.
[Jeez louise, that's quite a pickle Hilda's in,] said Herdy, visibly shocked. [But what can I do here?]
"We hope to have Lilly assist us in ambushing the thieves and getting the Pokemon back," said Cheren. "As for you, I just got an idea: round up Watcher and the others. Maybe even your parents if possible."
[They're pretty fair apart but I'll do my best,] said Herdy, nodding in approval. [I'll sniff them out in due time and meet up with you guys to help.]
"Then we're ready to go," said Bianca, as she put Lilly into an empty Poke Ball. "I just hope Hilda's doing fine."
As she neared the campsite dead ahead, Hilda ran from tree to tree as quietly as possible with Pidove flying alongside her, trying not to get spotted. Luckily, the shield seemed to at least be soundproof from both the inside and outside. She stopped and hid behind a big enough tree just in front of the shielded campsite while Pidove landed on a branch to act as her eyes as he observed what went on. All that was left was to await Cheren and Bianca coming to help but Hilda couldn't help but feel impatient, wanting to get Oshawot back and all.
Deciding to risk it, Hilda took a peak for herself at the campsite and saw Simon and Sammy scanning each Poke Ball for data on the Pokemon in them. Seeing as they weren't with "Bertram," "Janet," "Bright" and "Vanessa" at the laboratory, she figured the other four really were in the cabin, probably resting from the whole operation. She saw Oshawott laying down in the cage which made her smile at the prospect of getting her friend back to safety.
Hilda hid back behind the tree to go over her plan. The minute they lowered the shield, Pidove would catch the two off guard with a gust attack and knock them down. While Cheren and Bianca would capsulize the boxes of Poke Balls, she'd free Oshawott and they'd hightail it out of there before the other four could get out in time. She was smiling to herself with confidence when Pidove chirped in with bad news.
[Don't look now, Hilda,] he began to say, [but it seems those two have lowered the shield already.]
Hilda gasped in shock as she was able to hear sounds and speaking from the campsite now. She took a small peak to see Simon and Sammy walking over to capsulize the tower and the generator. A dreadful feeling came over her but she wasn't about to call it quite now.
"Change of plans, Pidove," said Hilda as she felt Oshawott's Scalchop in her pocket. "We'll have to handle things ourselves and if worse comes to worse, we'll just have to hold out for Cheren and Bianca to bail us out. Ready?"
[Might as well be,] said Pidove, spreading out her wings and prepared for flight. [Just give the word and we go.]
Hilda looked to see Simon and Sammy pressing a button on the tower and generator each to recapsulize them at once. When they headed for the cabin to alert their associates with their backs turned, Hilda didn't waste a second.
With that order made, Hilda sprinted out from behind the tree with Pidove flying alongside her, ready to attack. Just two seconds after Simon and Sammy turned around in reaction, Pidove flapped his wings harder to blow a major force of wind at the twins, blowing them away figuratively and literally. They fell hard to the ground and grabbed grass to hang onto deal life itself. All the while, Hilda scurried over to Simon's box of 30 Poke Balls and pressed a button to have it capsulized so she could put it in her pocket.
All the commotion naturally got Oshawott out of his sulky mood as he got up to see what was going on. The sight of Hilda herself was enough to fill his heart with hope and widen a smile on his face. His Trainer had come to save him.
[Over here, Hilda!] yelled Oshawott, banging on the cage. [Please get me out of here!]
"Already on it!" Hilda replied. She took out Oshawott's Scalchop turned to shout to Pidove. "Pidove, get this to Oshawott so he can bust outta that cage pronto!" She threw the Scalchop in the air, aiming for where Pidove could get it.
[Roger!] said Pidove, ceasing his Gust attack and flying over to grab the shell with his talon claws. [One Scalchop, coming on down!] He flew over the cage and dropped the Scalchop down through the bars so Oshawott could grab it as fast as he could.
Forming his Shell Blade, Oshawott sliced up the metal bars of the cage door and rammed himself right out of his confinements. Once his Scalchop was placed back on his bellybutton, he excitedly scampered over to Hilda who awaited him with open arms and jumped up to get a nice big hug from his Trainer.
[I-I almost thought you wouldn't be able to get me,] said Oshawott, crying from happiness. [I was so scared in that cage.]
"You and me both," replied Hilda, tearing up as well. "But like I said, I'm not going to give up on you."
Simon and Sammy in the meantime were still in a state of shock and exhausting from the powerful Gust attack but were beginning to get their second wind. Simon had readjusted his glasses when he was shocked to see Hilda and Oshawott together and the missing box of Poke Balls. In a burst of adrenaline, Simon got up to start rushing at Hilda but Pidove's eyes quickly caught him.
[Look out, Hilda!] the pigeon Pokemon yelled. [Incoming!]
Hilda and Oshawott looked to see Simon coming at them. [I got this!] said Oshawott, reinvigorated with newly found determination. He turned around as he leaped down from Hilda's arms to breath in and blast out a big Water Gun at Simon's face, washing off his glasses and making him fall down all over again.
By this point, Sammy had managed to gather the strength to rise up again and saw Hilda beginning to head over to the desk where her box of Poke Balls was. Thinking quickly, she took out a Poke Ball from her pocket and threw it right in front of her box of Poke Balls just as it opened up to let out her Ferroseed. The steel-gray, egg-shaped Pokemon with green spikes stopped Hilda in her tracks just before she could reach the box. Hilda scowled as she backed away slightly, cursing herself for not being fast enough.
"Don't move a muscle," threatened Sammy as she quickly ran over to capsulize her box of Poke Balls with the push of a button. She put the Capsule in her pocket and stood firmly behind her Ferroseed, donning a more heroic persona with hints of cockiness. "Not unless you want to become a human pincushion. And before you think about attacking me directly, check this." She pressed a button on her watch that caused the same uniform her associates wore during the lab heist to materialize on her. "It might look like a fashion disaster but it's shields me from just about anything harmful."
Oshawott ran up to Hilda and stood behind her right foot out of slight fear while Pidove flew down onto Hilda's left shoulder, slightly pinching her with his talon claws. The Pokemon exchanged grim looks with their Trainer as they knew how things just got back and were about to get worse.
Simon had been patting on the grass, looking for his glasses until he finally found them while listening to the action. "Nice job, Sammy," Simon congratulated as he wiped his specs with his shirt before putting them back on. "I'll be right there to back you up. Go, Klink!" As he ran over to his twin sister, he took out his own Poke Ball that opened up and let out a Pokemon that resembled two gears turning in the air. Last but not least, he equipped his own "armor" as well.
Hilda, Oshawott and Pidove grimaced at their foes before them: a Grass/Steel type and a Electric/Steel type. To attack would be suicide and the three of them knew that all too well. Hilda gritted her teeth and cursed herself again, hoping that she would've been long gone by now.
"Hang on a second," said Sammy, squinting her eyes as she recognized Hilda. "Wasn't she Bright and Vanessa's target today?"
"Hey, yeah," said Simon in realization. "She's Oshawott's Trainer. It's almost heartwarming that one girl managed to get this far for her Pokemon."
"And what are you implying by that?" asked Hilda, hoping to buy sometime so Cheren and Bianca could bail them out soon. That and she was genuinely curious. "Who are you and what is all this about?"
"I'm not at liberty to state the name of my employers just yet," said Simon, "but I will say that we're an organization dedicated to freeing Pokemon from ignorant Trainers. You've just now been slated for Pokemon Liberation along with other lab Pokemon."
Hilda paused out of bewilderment before making an actual reply. "Wait, if you're against Pokemon Trainers, then why do you have Pokemon?"
"Ever heard of the greater good?" Sammy asked rhetorically.
"Ever heard of hypocrisy?" Hilda bit back bluntly.
"Our Pokemon are willing to put their lives on the line for the sake of other Pokemon's freedom," answered Simon. "Now answer my question, why are you here?"
"Isn't it obvious?" replied Hilda, making a very stoic expression on her face. "I'm here to save my friend, Oshawott. As his Trainer, I'm responsible for him and even if I tried, I could turn my back on him."
Sammy groaned. "Not this again? Do you really think we're going to believe such a superficial claim like that? Sure you say that they're your friends but then you go on to put them through painful battles at your whim."
"I think we've wasted enough time as it is," said Simon to Sammy before turning to Hilda. "We'll spare you any harm or possible death if you give up the 40 lab Pokemon you have as well as your Oshawott and Pidove. You may be brave but I doubt you're this headstrong."
"Oh, you can have them," Hilda began to say, "when you've pried them from my cold, dead hands. You have to be crazy if you think I'm just going to throw my hands up and sell out my two friends like I was some, and pardon my french, cold, heartless *****. So go ahead and kill me. I'll take it over the guilt I'd feel afterwards."
Hearing all that made Simon and Sammy's serious, no-nonsense facades deteriorate as their bluff was called out spectacularly. Neither one wanted to become a murderer but if the situation went on like this, they weren't sure what to do. As for Hilda's Pokemon, Pidove smiled as his Trainer and long time friend's bold words while Oshawott smiled even brighter as he found greater respect for his Trainer.
Hilda smirked triumphantly and folded her arms. "You're not really going to do it, are you?" she said. "After all, you want to be all noble and 'save the Pokemon from Trainers.' Should I be gravely injured with all evidence pointing to your little group, that'd be really detrimental your image very well, wouldn't it?"
"Ah, shut up!" said Sammy, trying regain her grip on the situation. "Stop acting like you're in charge. You're still outmatched."
Hilda was about to retort when she heard Pidove whisper something in her ear. She resumed her triumphant smile and thrust out her right hand sideways to make a thumbs up. "Not anymore, I'm not."
"Tepig, Flame Charge!"
Like a streaking comet, Tepig raced from behind the trees coated in his fiery aura before either Simon or Sammy knew it. The Fire Pig leaped onto Simon's desk, smashing his laptop in the process, and raced off the edge to strike Klink dead-on. Being a Steel-type, Klink was greatly affected but survived thanks to his training and experience, levitating back up while Tepig landed on the ground, fiery aura gone.
Though dumbstruck along with Simon, Sammy wasted no time in trying to retaliate. "Ferroseed, use-"
As per his Trainer's orders, Snivy swiftly ran over, faster than Hilda could see, towards Ferroseed with his drawn-out vines and delivered two hard whips to the spike ball, suffering minor pricks from Ferroseed's green pins.
[Snivy! Tepig!] Oshawott exclaimed in surprise. [What are you doing here?]
[Saving your butt, duh,] responded Tepig jokingly as he went over to see his fellow starter.
[Don't get the wrong idea,] sniffed Snivy. [I'm only obligated by my Trainer to help rescue you and nothing else, Water Boy.]
[Nice to see you too, Snivy,] said Oshawott, frowning.
As the starter squabbled, Cheren and Bianca ran over to their best friend and stopped to each stand by Hilda's side with Lilly who stood by Lilly. Simon and Sammy took this opportunity to get some much needed distance, still confident they could win.
"You're late, guys," teased Hilda. "I could've been killed, you know?"
"Says the girl who went in without us," retorted Bianca, panting from running so much.
"Whatever your last name is, I bet it means 'reckless' and 'foolhardy,'" panted Cheren.
"Well, actually it's-"
"Ferroseed, Rollout!" shouted Sammy.
Ferroseed turned on his side and began rolling fast towards his opponents. Seeing the living spike ball coming at them, Hilda, Cheren, Bianca and their Pokemon scattered to different sides.
"Reverse and get Blondie there now!" shouted Sammy.
Hearing his Trainer's orders, Ferroseed stopped in his tracks and rolled back towards Bianca who panicked and shut her eyes to prepare for the worst. However, Tepig and Lilly acted quicker and ran up front to defend their Trainer. First, Lilly widened her eyes for her Leer attack and a glint from her stare was enough to make Ferroseed cease rolling as a fearful sensation filled him and lowered his defense power. Last but not least, Tepig snorted in deep to build up fire power and then blasted a powerful Ember attack that hit Ferroseed hard. As a Grass/Steel type, that was enough to finish him. Bianca opened her eyes and saw that her Pokemon had won.
"Well... crap," was all Sammy could say as she recalled Ferroseed.
While that had went on, Hilda and Cheren were facing Simon and Klink, taking turns so as not to get in each other's way since they were weren't the best in tag-battles. Hilda mostly was wait for an opening to take advantage of.
"Leaf Tornado!" ordered Cheren.
Snivy ran underneath Klink and spun in place to create his green cyclone to engulf his foe with.
"Thunderbolt and Gear Grind!" ordered Simon.
Though battered by the strong winds of the cyclone and the leaves, Klink managed to charge himself up and unleash all 10,000 volts down on Snivy, causing him to cease the attack out of pain. Free of the tornado, Klink's dual-gear body then split up and reconvened down where Snivy was just getting up to sandwich him between himself, crushing the Grass Snake Pokemon.
[This is just not my day,] griped Snivy, though the pain.
"Um, Hilda," said Cheren, gritting his teeth. "Now would be a real good time for some back up."
"Gotcha," said Hilda. "Oshawott, Water Gun on the left gear and Pidove, Quick Attack on the right gear!"
Following orders, Pidove flapped his wings and zoomed at a great speed to strike the right gear in the face while Oshawott breathed in to build up water power and spewed out a concentrated column of water at the left gear. Snivy dropped down to the ground, humiliated thrice in one day with an ego bruised beyond belief.
Simon recalled Klick to his Poke Ball and got closer back to Sammy. "Dammit, how could things go south so fast? I know we're not Trainers but still..."
Bianca rejoined Hilda and Cheren to stand off against their foes along with their Pokemon by their feet, still pumped for another round. Understandably, Simon and Sammy had a bad feeling in the pit of their stomaches.
"Come to think of it, where's Bert and the others?" asked Sammy, whispering to her brother. "All this noise should've been enough to get their attention, right?"
"That's what I was thinking too," replied Simon. "I know they're tired but I don't think they're really heavy sleepers."
"Give it up already," said Hilda. "You're outnumbered and out-powered."
Not yet we aren't, thought Simon before whispering to Sammy. "When I say go, we hightail it to the cabin. Our suits will protect us and hopefully, we'll get to the others in time. If those three run, we'll catch them for sure."
"Hand over the capsule," Hilda demanded again. "Stop dragging this out."
"GO!" shouted Simon at the top of his lungs as he and Sammy turned tail and sprints towards the cabin dead ahead to their enemy's surprise. They made it to the door without a scratch and went inside.
"Hold it!" yelled Hilda as she began after them when Cheren grabbed her shoulder to stop her.
"Wait," he began to say. "If they get the others, we'll trap them all at the laboratory. If we stay here, they'll overtake us."
Hilda swallowed hard from unease but decided to comply. "Okay but this better work. Hopefully, the Professors got the cops this time."
"Guys, get up!" shouted Simon as he and Sammy burst through the bedroom door. "Those Trainers from the lab came over and took thirty of the lab Pokemon all while you... sleep... here... like babies." His words slowed to a full stop as the sight of Bert and Jan snuggling together on the bed to the left, Vanessa sleeping in the bed to the right and Bright sleeping uncomfortably on the floor sank in.
"Wow, I knew they were tired but come on," said Sammy, flabbergasted and unaware of Simon's rising temper. "Awww, look at Bert and Jan over there. Such a cute couple."
"WAKE UP ALREADY, YOU SLACKERS!" Simon erupted with hellish fury that scared Sammy out of her wits. "WE JUST GOT OUR ASSES HANDED TO US BY A HEADSTRONG BRUNETTE, A FOUR-EYED POINDEXTER AND A BLOND BIMBO ALL OF WHOM WERE MERE ROOKIE TRAINERS AND GOT HALF OF OUR SPOILS. ALL THE WHILE, YOU FOUR HAD THE GALL TO CATCH A FEW Z'S! 'SQUADRON OF THE MONTH,' MY GODDAMN ASS!"
All that left Simon panting for air after snapping like that. His efforts weren't totally in vain as Bright stirred a bit before opening his eyes.
"Oh, it's you two," yawned Bright as he checked his ears and took out an earplug to his utter bafflement. "How'd that get in there?" He looked back up at Simon. "So what's up?"
Having recalled their Pokemon, Hilda, Bianca and Cheren retreated into the woods as fast as they could only to stop in a small clearing to catch their breath halfway towards the laboratory. Cheren turned on his X-Transceiver to call Cedric right away.
"Professor," panted Cheren. "Please tell me you have the cop on the horn."
"I'm sorry to say that, we still got nothing from them," said Cedric, regrettably. "We'll keep trying but Aurea and I have luckily been able to form a sort of trap with a bunch of Pokemon those goons didn't get."
"Well, I guess that's better than nothing," said Hilda when a loud scream made her and her friends nearly jump out of their skins.
"GYYYYYAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHH! I'LL TEAR THOSE PUNKS LIMB FROM LIMB WHEN I GET THEM!"
"I'd say that they just found out what we did," said Bianca, shaken by how loud that was.
Hearing footsteps approaching very quickly, the three Trainers panicked at how they couldn't be caught too soon and leaped into some nearby bushes to hide behind. Soon enough, Bert, in his uniform, ran into the clearing and stopped to catch his breath but was clearly still enraged as his scowl seemed to be permanently frozen onto his face.
"GET THE LEAD OUT, YOU WALKING, TALKING TRASHBAGS!" he shouted on the top of his lungs as his Squadron wearily caught up with him. "We are not going to let all our work go to waste!"
As they lay on their bellies while hiding in the bushes, Hilda, Bianca and Cheren could help but find Bert's voice awfully familiar.
"Okay, Boss," said Vanessa, scared of her superior. "I know that you're upset how those three pulled the wool over our heads but losing your's won't do us any good."
"Those three might be at the laboratory as we speak and we gave them that chance," said Bert, calming down but still peeved. "I'll lose my head if I want to."
"Wait, 'at the lab?'" said Bright as a thought just occurred to him. "What if that's what they want us to do and they're leading us into a trap? There may be cops ready and waiting to get the jump on us."
"Bright's got a point," said Jan. "You know the saying, 'the criminal always returns to the scene of the crime?'"
Hilda, Bianca and Cheren's heart sank as they collectively gulped, knowing those six had them pegged. Hilda's brain raced for a solution, not wanting to give up the other thirty Pokemon until at last, she figured something out. Something risky, daring and reckless through and through.
"So now what do we do?" asked Sammy, walking over to Bert.
"Well, the thirty Pokemon we still have is better than zero, I suppose," sighed Bert, having gotten over his previous fury. "I suppose we'll have to turn them in to Ghetsis. Speaking of which, I'll handle the Capsule from here on out now."
"Right away," said Sammy, taking out her Capsule to hand over to Bert who put it in his Capsule case.
"Well, we may as well pack up our stuff at the campsite and-"
"Looking for me," shouted Hilda as she stepped out of the bushes, garnering everyone's attention. She took out her Bicycle Capsule and dropped it quickly to the ground, covering herself in a cloud of smoke as it changed into her bike. She emerged from it riding on her bicycle pass the six Knights to their surprise. "You want 'your' Poke Balls? Come and get me!"
As she rode right into the woods, despite the bumpy terrain, Bert came out of his shock at last. "You heard her. Let's go get her and make her pay."
With that said, Bert, Jan, Bright, Vanessa, Simon and Sammy ran into the direction Hilda rode off into, unaware of Cheren and Bianca coming out of hiding to watch them run off after their best friend.
You better come out of this alive, Hilda, thought Cheren grimly as he looked at the Capsule in his hand, labeled: "Container Capsule No. 001."
Author's Note: Finally, all done. The final parts may seem "rushed" but I hope you enjoyed this in spite of that. I'll likely get back to this after Chapter 6 is completely to see what may need a touch up.
Pidove's attention issues will be touched up later on in the series.
As you can tell, Hilda's last name won't be revealed anytime soon. Not that it'll ever matter. But what could it be? Ooooooo.
That's... pretty much it. See you next time in Chapter 4: A Feline Felony where Pokemon are given out like candy! You'll see what I mean...
Pokemon: The Black & White Adventure: 14 year old Hilda is a Pokemon Trainer with a secret: she can talk to Pokemon. After setting off into Unova with her starter, she gets involved in the affairs of Team Plasma and becomes acquainted with N, a mysterious guy her age with the exact same abilities as her. While enjoying her life, a tangled web of mystery is weaved around her and the reveal may shock her beyond belief.
Join the adventure by clicking the link above. Read & Review.
Author's Note: This will sadly be the last chapter for sometime as I'm making this the pilot's final part and not Chapter Six (I lied ). After this is posted, I intend to work out the whole story from here. But don't worry, I don't intend to abandon this fanfic anytime soon. Hopefully, all this was enough to garner your interest for later chapters.
Anyways, here Hilda gets help from an unlikely ally and Cheren and Bianca are each given a Pokemon in a very unceremoniously way. The fact that I'm spoiling that here alone should send up a flag. While I thought it to be necessary, you're millage may vary...
Oh, and major warning, this will be a pretty long chapter. Even moreso than the first. Hope I can keep you hooked enough by now.
Chapter 4: A Feline Felony
Purrloin could hardly contain her joy as she watched Patrick picking berries for lunch from behind the tree, smiling mischievously at her prey and licking her lips at the berries. It had been a hard time finding rubes to get a rise out of and food to please her constant cravings but at last she found some potential entertainment and a snack to relieve her boredom. As she awaited the time to strike, the Devious Pokemon almost felt sorry for the poor sap. "Almost" being the key word. Besides, in the woods, it was survival of the fittest or however the humans said it.
Blissfully ignorant of anyone snooping around, Patrick placed one last Oran Berry onto a big leaf along with five others, planning to split them between him and his big brother, Watcher, once he came to get him. Feeling a tad peckish at the moment, he decided to take one of his share ahead of time to eat for himself. However, as he began to put it in his mouth, a violet blur sped by and snatched it out of his hand to his complete surprise. Patrick's sharp eyes frantically dratted around for any Pokemon nearby but saw nothing.
[Probably my imagination,] said Patrick as he reached down to pick up another berry. He opened up his mouth but the violet blur raced by to take that one away too. By now, Patrick was nothing short of freaked out by this and thought it'd be best to not leave the berries on a leaf out in the open.
[I better find Watcher and fast,] said Patrick as he grab all the berries so they could be stored in his cheeks but the violet blur raced by to grab the rest as well. [Hey!] the Patrat cried in exasperation. [Who's taking my berries?]
Deciding to humor him, Purrloin walked out from behind a nearby tree on her two hind legs with a grin of amusement on her face and two berries each skewered on her long, retractible claws like shish-kabobs. [Oh, I'm sorry. Were these yours?] she said mockingly as she finished munching on the first two berries.
Patrick turned to see Purrloin to his displeasure, knowing the species's infamy. [I went to a lot of trouble looking for the ripest and freshest ones around here,] he wailed in protest. [Give them back, you meanie!]
[Well, I would but there's a problem,] said Purrloin, making a concern face and tone of voice.
[And what's that?] asked Patrick innocently.
In one swift move, Purrloin opened her mouth wide and stuffed all four berries into her mouth, removing them from her claws in the process. [I ate them all,] she said with her mouth full. As she chewed on them, she was entertained by the look on Patrick's face, a mix of anger, sadness and shock. Never gets old, she thought, mentally s******ing. After swallowing, the cat decided to tease him some more as she licked her paws and claws for juices. [You were right about one thing. These ones were really ripe. Mmmmm-mmmm.]
[Why you-] snarled Patrick. His anger grew and teeth gritted until he began charging towards Purrloin to attack. [You'll pay for that!]
Will I now? thought Purrloin, making a naughty smile. As Patrick got close, she winked at him in a faux-affectionate manner to use her infamous move, Charm.
True to the attack's name, Patrick suddenly found himself stopping in his tracks as he was swooned by Purrloin who now looked like the most lovely creature he ever laid eyes upon. His heartbeat sped up and his face turned red as he was smitten by such adorableness, forgetting his previous anger towards her.
Purrloin giggled as part of the act. [Thank you so much for those yummy berries, Mr. Patrat,] she said like a sweet, innocent little girl as she moved in closer to Patrick. [You really know how to find the best ones.]
[Oh, um,] Patrick bashfully began to say, fumbling his words. [You're very welcome. A cute cat like you deserve only the best.]
[Oh, how sweet of you,] squealed Purrloin, having too much fun with her little show. She moved in closer to Patrick to give him a little smooch on the cheek. [Here's a little something in return.]
Feeling too emotional for his own good, Patrick fainted with a smile on his face, collapsing the ground. Seeing all that forced Purrloin to drop the act and burst out laughing at her finest piece of work when a familiar voice from behind her made her heart sink and pupil shrink in fear.
[Having fun with my brother, Purrloin?]
Purrloin stopped laughing and gulped as she slowly turned around to face Watcher. The stern look on his face and folded arms were all that was needed to tell Purrloin that she was in deep trouble. Out of sheer desperation, she tried to save face the best she could.
[Why yes, Watcher!] said Purrloin, donning a wry smile with faux-sweetness. [You know how Patrick and I love to mess around like the best of friend we so clearly are.]
[Don't feed me that same old crud,] said Watcher, sarcastically. He moved in closer to look Purrloin straight in the eye with a very mean look. [I'm not your puppet and neither is my little brother. Better make tracks fast before I Low Kick you into next month.]
Remembering how Fighting-type move could devastate a Dark-type like herself, Purrloin fearfully ran for her life on all fours, not saying anything else. At the same time, Patrick woozily got up, free from the effects of Purrloin's Charm.
[What happened to me?] the young Patrat asked. [And why do I feel all... tingly inside?]
[That darn Purrloin was at it again,] said Watcher, going over to help his little brother. [Though to be fair, you should've known be careful with her Charm.]
Patrick blushed with embarrassment. [Hey, it could happen to anybody, right?] he said defensively. As cool as his big brother was, he hated when Watcher treated him like a baby.
Before Watcher could reply, Herdy surprised them by jumping right out of the bushes to the north and stopping before them. [Finally, I've found you two. There's little time to explain so I'll save it when we're all huddled together. Hilda's up Northwest in the woods near Route 1 and she need out help. Cheren and Bianca too.]
[Say no more, Herdy,] said Watcher determinedly. Hearing the part with Hilda was good enough for him. [You go find Sue and Addle while I'll go find our parents to help too.]
With that settled, Watcher ran east to get their parents with Patrick trotting behind and Herdy went west to sniff out the Sewaddle sisters. They had no idea that Purrloin was listening in on the whole thing with her super-sharp hearing from mere feet away. She smiled with interest as she decided to pay her "old friend" Hilda a visit and see what sort of trouble she got herself into this time...
Simon and Sammy landed back at the campsite and capsulized their Jet Packs after turning them off. They head over to join their teammates in the center and gave their report on their search for Hilda to Bert. Everyone else had returned to the campsite after their search to pack things up before anyone discovered them.
"We both searched the woods from up high for fifteen minutes straight," said Simon, exhausted from everything. "We can't maneuver through the trees well on our jet packs and the foliage gets pretty dense northwest."
"Not to mention how time consuming all this is," added Sammy. "We might not be able to find her before the Shadow Triad arrive in twenty minutes."
"I see," said Bert solemnly, trying to keep his cool unlike before.
"I've seen to it that everything was packed into your Capsule case," said Jan, handing over the box to Bert. "As for Simon's laptop, I'm afraid there's little to salvage. It was smashed and burnt down to its hard drive."
"Welp, that's about it then," sighed Bright. "We tried the best we could but we might as well turn in our thirty Pokemon and come clean to Ghetsis and the King himself."
"So what's the call, Boss?" asked Vanessa. "Do we just sit on our asses here and wait for the Triad to show up?"
Bert remained silence for a few seconds before stating his decision. "No. We're going to complete our mission and get those other thirty Pokemon in the nick of time." Naturally, this earned him some surprised reactions from his teammates. "Even if we have to search on foot, I'm not about to call it quits because of some cocky child."
"But for all we know, she could be getting the cops in Accumula," Simon suggested.
"I'm afraid that might not be so likely," replied Bert. "Odds are that she wants us to pursue her so she'll have a chance to get our capsule containing the other lab Pokemon. That's why she taunted us back there, to get us to go after her."
"Jeez louis, that's pretty clever," murmured a bewildered Bright. Everyone else shared his sentiments exactly.
"Be that as it may," Bert began to say in response. "I'd say that for all her sharp wits, she's still a rookie Trainer and probably won't be able to take on two of us at once. Though even if she's fourteen, we shouldn't underestimate what sort of tricks she may have up her sleeve."
"And we're going to find her how?" asked Vanessa.
"Jan and I will do a thorough search of the woods further up northwest," answered Bert. "Meanwhile, you and Bright will search the northeast woods while Simon and Sammy will head into Accumula to see that she doesn't reach the police. Disguised, of course. There's not a moment to lose and I'll be damned if I let this girl get the best of Team Plasma. Is that clear?"
"Crystal Clear!" responded the other Knight as they saluted their superior. None of them were aware of a certain Pidove spying on them before flying off to see his friend...
After riding her bike into the dense part of the woods, Hilda disembarked to stay in one spot and hide under the thick foliage that hardly let any sunlight shine through. Wanting to stay one step ahead of those goons, she sent Pidove back to the campsite to spy on them so he could come back and report what they're planning. Assuming his attention span could keep up...
As Hilda sat at the base of a big tree in a little clearing, she also brought out Oshawott so they could have a moment of peace between them. If her plan didn't go well, she could've been spending her last moment with Oshawott, a moment she wanted to enjoy despite the uncertainty of their future. By all means, it was definitely the calm before the storm.
[I'm back!] chirped Pidove as he quickly flew to his friends by the tree. [You were right, Hilda. They did return to the campsite and they seem to be still out to get you. Particularly that guy with the sunglasses and his partner. Those two are heading our way.]
"And he's the one with the capsule we want," said Hilda, remaining stoic but confident. "There's only two of them so we might have a chance. Of course, they may have powerful Pokemon up their sleeves."
[We'll just have to get the capsule and make a run for it,] suggested Oshawott. [If they follow, the cops will get them.]
"But how we'll pull that gambit off on our own is a whole other question," Hilda replied. "My X-Transceiver gets no reception in these parts so we can't get Cheren and Bianca."
Everyone there remained silent as a tense atmosphere set in... only to be ruined by Oshawott's stomach growling like a ticked-off Beartic. The Sea Otter Pokemon blushed in embarrassment.
[Sorry about that,] said Oshawott bashfully. [I've been battling so much that I've lost a lot of calories. I'm so hungry.]
"Leave that to me," said Hilda, smiling as she took out her Capsule case and selected the one labeled "07: Refrigerator." "I was feeling a little famished myself too." She pressed the button and tossed the capsule a few feet away. In a burst of steam and particles, a refrigerator was formed and Hilda got up to go over to open it up.
[Um, Hilda,] said Oshawott, timidly. [I'm really glad you stuck your neck out for me back there. I... really can't thank you enough.]
"You're very welcome but I'd rather not let such flatter go to my head," said Hilda as she opened the fridge. "Hey, Pidove. Do you want anything?]
[No need,] replied Pidove as he pecked the ground for juicy bugs and worms to eat. [I can forage for myself, thank you.]
Oshawott sighed and smiled. Despite how grim the situation was at the moment, it felt like everything was going to be alright with Hilda to help...
"Aurea, I know that we're in a rush and all," said a concerned Cedric Juniper as Aurea's Convertible began racing down Route 1 towards Accumula, "but all the same, I'd like it if I could live up to seventy-eight at least."
Aurea Juniper didn't answer as she instead focused on the road while driving her Capsule Car on the dirt road. After Cheren and Bianca came back without Hilda or the culprits, they told the Professors of her gambit and how she wanted them to get the cops at once. However, since the police force of Nuvema couldn't help them, they decided to try getting to Accumula in time for help. Being the better driver, Aurea wasted no time in putting the petal to the mettle.
"I only hope we can help Hilda in time," said Cheren. "Those goons don't seem to be killers but who knows what'll they do."
Bianca clenched her fist at the mere thought of best friend dead. Please be alive, Hilda.
"Well, in the event that we have to confront these goons ourselves," said Cedric as he took out two Poke Balls from his right pocket, "take these Pokemon each. Cheren, you'll get this Rufflet while Bianca, you'll get this Ducklett."
Cheren took one along with Bianca. "I dunno about this. As Trainers, we're suppose to earn them through battles in the wild and not just accept them like candy-"
Before Cheren could finish expressing his concerns, Aurea saw a black SUV pull out from a fork in the road and slammed on the brakes, stopping in the nick of time. The resulting inertia caused everyone to lurch forth unpleasantly as they all looked to see the SUV that stopped as well, backing up a little too.
Aurea honked the horn as loud as she could. "What the hell is wrong with you?" she yelled violently, most unlike her. "You could smashed right into us!"
"That's what I wanna know," said Bright, rolling down the windows and sticking his head out. "Where'd you get your license from? A freakin'-" He stopped short of his sentence when he saw the people in the car. Judging by their shocked expression, he had be recognized, his Knight uniform not helping matters. "-nuthouse..." he meekly finished.
Cheren groaned as he pressed his hand up to his forehead. "You've gotta be kidding me."
Cedric remained stoic and moved over to Aurea. "You and Bianca stay in the car and ride off on my signal," he whispered. "Cheren and I will hold them off."
As he strategized, Bright, Vanessa, Simon and Sammy emptied the SUV to stand firmly in their way. "I dunno what you're up to but I doubt we'd like it," said Bright, trying to be serious like Bert. "Get outta the car now."
"First, answer me this," said Cedric as he and Cheren got out. Hopefully, his question would distract them from the ladies. "Where are the other two of your group? Your leaders, I presume."
"Bert and Jan are tracking down that brunette up northwest as we speak," answered Vanessa. "We were sent to track her down elsewhere but unfortunately, we just ran into you nosy bunch. So now we'll have to hold you off from whatever you're trying to do."
"Well, good luck with that," said Cedric, reaching into his pants pocket which Cheren took note of. "You're gonna need it against us."
Simon was observant to see his little ploy. "Hey, get your hands out of your pockets!"
"As you wish," replied Cedric as he took out the Poke Ball and pressed the button. "Maractus, Pin Missile!"
"Rufflet, Leer!" yelled Cheren, holding out his newly-aquired Poke Ball.
Having been deployed from the Poke Ball, Maractus shot her pointy pins at the four Knights who scattered to avoid getting hit. Rufflet followed up with a glint in his eye making the Knight slightly freeze and shudder, putting them off-guard. In second, the roadway was cleared with Simon and Sammy to the right and Bright and Vanessa to the left.
"Hold on tight, Bianca," ordered Aurea as she hit the gas pedal hard and drove the car back down the road as fast as it could go, speed limit be damned. Cedric and Cheren luckily got out of the way too.
"Simon, Sammy," began Bright.
"Already on it!" said Simon as he got out his Jetpack Capsule along with Sammy.
While Simon and Sammy blasted off after Aurea and Bianca, Bright and Vanessa ran over to stand off against Cedric and Cheren with their Poke Balls out.
"Not bad, Gramps," said Vanessa sneering. "You sure pulled a fast one on us there. Better hope it pays off."
"Oh, it will," replied Cedric. "And don't call me, Gramps."
[And that's the gist of it,] Watcher finished speaking to all the Pokemon who gathered at their Hangout Stump. Patrick silently stood beside him. [We don't know how many there are but Hilda needs our help more than ever and any Pokemon thieves in our woods cannot get away unpunished. Are you all with me?]
[What kind of dumb question is that?] said Sue with spunk.
[Heck yeah, we're with you,] finished Addle hotblooded.
[We're kick their butts six ways from Sunday!] they simultaneously spoke with their mother, a Leavanny, merely smiling in agreement.
[I shall assist you in any way possible,] a Ciccino, Minnie's father, elegantly said. [Any friend of my daughter is a friend of mine.]
[Just let me at those criminals and everything will be okay,] growled a Stoutland, Herdy and Lilly's father, who was pumped up and ready to go.
[Everyone, listen up!] yelled a Tranquil, Pidove's mother, as she flew over to the group and hovered in the air as they looked at her. [I was scouting from the air when I just saw Cheren, Bianca and the Professors on Route 1. I think they're facing the thieves and they may need our help.]
[Then let's not dilly-dally!] barked Herdy. [Let's hurry up to Route 1 on the double!]
As the group began racing to help their friends, Watcher stopped so he could make Patrick stop. [Sorry, little bro. But you're staying behind.]
[But I wanna get in on the action,] protested Patrick.
[You'd just be a liability if anything,] insisted Watcher. [Just saying here and we'll be back before you know it.]
Watcher then raced off after the others but Patrick frowned and began following from a distance, determined to prove that he was powerful enough for this.
Sniffing the air as she ran up further north, Purrloin picked up on a familiar, pungent scent that made her groan in disgust. It seemed that Hilda hadn't bathed for a few days, a bad habit of her's, and the Devious Pokemon's sharp nose was unfortunately paying the price thanks to her repulsive B.O. Silver Lining? She found her old foe in less time that she expected.
Purrloin hid in a bush without making too much rustling noise and took a peak at the clearing to see Hilda with two Pokemon: one she recognized as Pidove and the other, Oshawott, she had never seen before. At least not in these woods, meaning he was likely from the laboratory. Going by his blue and white color scheme, she estimated Oshawott to be a water-type, easily manageable.
Purrloin watched Hilda bright out her Capsule Refrigerator and open it up to get out some canned sardines for her Oshawott while Pidove ate his fill of worms, something she nearly puked at. As Hilda used a can-opener on the sardines, the scent of it was carried out into the air, pleasing Purrloin's senses. Her mouth watered at the mesmerizing smell and began to form a naughty smile, mischievous schemes forming in her mind. Time to have some more fun...
"Here you are, Oshawott," said Hilda kindly. She kneeled down to hand the sardines to Oshawott who had ran over, eager to stuff his face. "Hope you fill up soon. We need to be ready and fast."
[Thank you so much for food,] said Oshawott energetically and gratefully. He was just tipping the can over to empty it all into his mouth when a violet blur sped by and his canned sardines had vanished in one single second to his bewilderment. [Where'd it go?]
Hilda and Pidove were as surprised as he was. "I don't know," she said in confusion. "All I saw was a purple blur speed by and that was it."
[Did you said 'purple?'] said Pidove in total shock. [Oh no, you don't think it's... her, do you?]
Hilda frowned sternly as she knew just who Pidove was referring to but wished she didn't. "Well, if it is, you better show yourself, you conniving, little thief!" she shouted as she looked all over the area. "Well, Purrloin? Where are you?"
[Well, isn't that sweet of you?] Purrloin coyly said from a few feet away. She stepped out of bushes in her bipedal fashion while licking the sardine can clean, savoring the flavor. [Even as a Trainer, you still remember your old friend from months back.] Once finished, she tossed the can behind her and burped rudely.
"You are no friend of mine," growled Hilda, almost livid. "You're a bully who messes around with others for your amusement."
[Hey, those are my sardines,] shouted Oshawott, upset over his denied meal. [Why did you eat them all? They weren't yours.]
[Like that matters to Purrloin,] said Pidove, just as upset as his friends. [She enjoys making trouble for others and . On top of that, she selfishly steals food for herself like a glutton and enjoys getting a rise out of her angered victims.]
[Well, I put up with a lot today so I'm not letting this one slide,] said Oshawott, angrily. He made a mad dash for Purrloin straight ahead to Tackle her.
I was hoping he'd do that, thought Purrloin, smirking.
"Wait, Oshawott!" said Hilda. "Don't do that or she'll-"
Purrloin made a cute little wink and giggle which made Oshawott stop in his tracks, becoming Charmed with the Devious Pokemon herself. His mouth quivered, his heart rate shot up and his face went red as he saw the most lovely Pokemon he ever set sights on. He even forgot why he was angry at her.
"Not this again," groaned Hilda.
[Yep, he's a goner,] said Pidove.
[I'm so sorry I ate your food like that,] Purrloin pretended to innocently apologize, making a warm, teary eyed look on her face. [I was so hungry I wasn't thinking straight.]
[Ah, well, it happens to even the best of us,] said Oshawott, bashful and shy. [I wasn't that hungry anyways.]
"Okay, Purrloin, that'll be enough for today," said Hilda, frowning as she folded her arms sternly. "I don't have the time for your usual shtick so stow it already."
Breaking character, Purrloin frowned and folded her forearms too. "Party pooper."
With Purrloin's acting interrupted, the effects Charm had on Oshawott were nullified. [What just happened?] he asked dumbfounded.
[You ran before I could explain,] said Pidove as he flew over to his confused compatriot. [Purrloin's favorite trick to use her Charm attack and make any male putty in her hands. Not that I'd know since I don't have putty or hands but I still stand by that metaphor.]
"Unfortunately, she's no exception," Hilda added on as she took out her Pokedex to bring up the Pokemon's profile. The device used a camera to recognized the image of Purrloin and automatically brought her profile which Hilda read aloud. "Purrloin, the Devious Pokemon. They steal from people for fun, but their victims can't help but forgive them. Their deceptively cute act is perfect."
[What can I say?] bragged Purrloin, throwing her hands up and pretend to be cool about it. [I'm a natural.]
"Just tell us what you're doing here already," said Hilda, still mad.
[Well, for one thing, I'm curious to know what sort of trouble you're in,] answered Purrloin. She sniffed and shuddered at Hilda's B.O. [Also you need a shower stat. Your scent is murder on my sinuses.]
"I'll pretend I didn't hear that last part," said Hilda before giving Purrloin the rundown of the previous events going on this morning.
[Well, color me surprised,] Purrloin said, genuinely surprised. [This is a lot bigger than your usual escapades. So all you need is just that Capsule case from that Shades guy and you'll be set.]
[Yeah, but why would you care?] asked Oshawott, suspiciously.
[Because with my Grade A acting and speed, I'll get it in no time flat,] answered Purrloin.
"You'd help us with this?" asked Hilda, surprised by her old foe's offer before quickly realizing something. "Hang on, what's the catch? I doubt you'd be selfless without some ulterior motive."
[Sharp as ever, I see,] chuckled Purrloin, having been found out. [Alright, I'll spill the beans: You know that restaurant in Accumula? The one that makes the best pancakes even in the afternoon during lunch.]
"Oh yeah," said Hilda, fondly thinking about them. "Mom took me there every now and then."
[Well, once I help get your Capsule, you're going to take me there as my Trainer and order a huge stack of pancakes,] said Purrloin, spreading her arms to emphasize the "huge" part. [They only allow domesticated Pokemon as well as ones that belong on a Trainer's team so you'll have to capture me as proof. So how about it?]
"Well, I'm very low on options," said Hilda, feeling uneasy about this team-up before throwing up her hands in resignation. "Might as well scrape the bottom of the barrel. You just better hold up your end of the bargain and not pull any funny business."
[I will, I will,] said Purrloin, defensively. [When have I not behaved myself?]
[Is that a trick question?] asked Pidove, legitimately confused by her wording.
[Also, if you're going to capture me,] added Purrloin, [I want you to battle me first.]
[Why's that?] asked Oshawott.
[It's a code amongst wild Pokemon who are interested in Trainers,] answered Pidove. [We engage them in battle to see what they're made of and to show them what we're made off. If we're captured, we stick with that Trainer to see if we can get better in skill through them.]
[Plus, I can burn calories before I get fat,] added Purrloin as she walked a few feet away for some distance. [Now then, boys, who wants to take this li'l lady out to dinner? I promise not to use my Charm attack. That'd be too easy and too boring.]
[Count me in,] said Oshawott, making a determined look on his face as he marched over to Hilda's side. [Consider this payback for my sardines.]
"Thanks, Oshawott," said Hilda, smiling down on him. "I'll have Pidove take over if you can't handle her."
[Just say the word,] chirped Pidove.
"Oshawott, slice her up with Razor Shell!" ordered Hilda, already pumped for battle.
[With pleasure!] said Oshawott as he removed his Scalchop from his bellybutton. Holding it would both of his paws, he formed the blue Shell Blade from his Water power.
Purrloin stayed perfectly calm but poised for action as Oshawott let out a big battle cry while charging right at her. Once he was close enough and had his blade raised up in his attack, she brought out both sets of her retractible claws and blocked the descending blade with her durable left claws while her right claws slashed his bare belly.
Oshawott stumbled backwards and gritting his teeth in pain, putting his Scalchop back on his belly as his blade dissipated. Purrloin wasted little time in rushing at Oshawott and slashing him repeatedly with her Fury Swipes, cockily sneering all the way.
"Water Gun!" ordered Hilda.
Enduring the slashes, Oshawott managed to build up enough power to blast a column of water at Purrloin, hitting her hard. The Devious Pokemon was pushed back by the blast to the point that she hit a tree, making her soaked and take a lot of damage.
[Clean that kitty's clock, Oshawott!] cheered Pidove.
Her claws retracted, she went down on all fours to shake herself totally dry and catch her breath before yet another Water Gun was blasted her way. With great speed, Purrloin avoided it by scampering over to her left.
Looks like I'll even have to borrow a cat's paw, Purrloin thought desperately as she made her right paw glow white with power. Or however that human phrase goes.
With that train of thought, Purrloin swiftly rushed at Oshawott and slashed him, knocking him down, before he knew what hit him but not with her claws. To Oshawott's shock as he got up, it was a Shell Blade like his own.
"Be careful, Oshawott," warned Hilda. "Her move 'Assist' allows her to replicate any move her foes or allies know so long as she has seen them."
[Like that advice'll make a difference,] said Purrloin as her Shell Blade dissipated and her left paw powerfully glowed white. She thrust it out and blasted her own Water Gun at Oshawott who stood his ground.
Shaking himself dry, Oshawott was still in the fight after being hit by two Water-type attack but was still in danger of losing. [Shall we, Hilda?] he asked, turning back to his Trainer slightly.
"You read my mind," replied Hilda, smiling confidently. "Whip your Tail back and forth!"
Despite how embarrassing it was, Oshawott turned around to wag his tail from side to side. Purrloin was about to attack when the sight of Oshawott shaking his behind made her stop in bafflement. Naturally, she burst out laughing at such an absurdity.
[What're you trying to do?] said Purrloin, still laughing. [Kill me with laughter?]
Oshawott looked up at Hilda who knew exactly what he was thinking and seeing her nod, he swung around fast to blast Purrloin with another Water Gun. With her lowered guard and defense power down, Purrloin was hit harder than she would've expected and was propelled backwards. Once the water ran dry, she hit the ground and rolled to a stop, her battle power very, very low.
"I'll take it from here, Oshawott!" said Hilda as she took out an empty Poke Ball from her pocket and enlarged it to the size of a baseball. "Go, Poke Ball!" She threw the ball with good aim and it hit Purrloin perfectly.
As the Devious Pokemon's body changed into red plasmic energy, the Poke Ball opened up to have it all transferred into it and closed up. Still conscious inside of it, Purrloin tried to get out the best she could but soon gave up, a loud PING sound indicating that she had been marked by the ball. Hilda ran over to pick up the ball and shrink it to have it locked, sighing in great relief.
Bert and Jan were not far away as they walked through the wood, going slow enough to try not alerting a certain Trainer and her Pokemon and looking all around themselves as the progress through the area. Soon enough, they heard loud noises from straight ahead.
"It sounds like a battle," said Jan whispered to Bert. "Think it's her?"
"It could be nothing," replied Bert. "But it'd say it's worth a look-see. We can't risk being wrong. Follow my lead and keep quiet."
After putting Purrloin's Poke Ball in her pocket, Hilda went over to tend to Oshawott who laid down after the battle. Taking out her capsule case, she decapsulized a first aid kit that contained a few Potions, Antidotes and other medical supplies meant for Pokemon. She took a Potion and began spraying Oshawott so he'd heal faster. He cringed as his wound stung but soon it was all over with him back at full-strength.
Pidove flew off from his branch to speak to Hilda, landing on the ground. [So Hilda,] he asked, [out of curiosity, you're not thinking of keeping Purrloin, are you?]
"Not really," answered Hilda. "Though I'll definitely stick to my word if she helps us out with this."
Oshawott heard footsteps coming from behind him and heard voices he recognized all too well. [Um, guys,] he said, gulping fearfully. [I think they may've found us.]
Hilda and Pidove were visibly aghast but didn't make a sound as they too soon heard footsteps and voices, the latter belonging to the ones called "Bert" and "Jan." They couldn't see them clearly but they couldn't risk being caught just yet. Spotting a big bush nearby, Hilda rushed into it with Oshawott and Pidove following her lead.
Hilda crouched uncomfortably with Oshawott and Pidove in her arms, well-concealed by the bushes as they kept as quiet as humanly possible. Less than a minute passed as Bert and Jan arrived in the area where they had heard the battle. Immediately, they began searching the clearing but found little to no trace of who they were looking for.
Please go away! Hilda desperately prayed with her Pokemon, trying her best to not even utter a whisper. I am not here at all! Just go away already!
"She doesn't seem to be here," said Jan. "Either it was just two wild Pokemon fighting or she was here but we missed her."
"I dunno about that," said Bert, scowling. "My gut tells me that she's hiding." He saw the bush move slightly in the corner of his eye. "Perhaps in plain sight." He turned himself to look directly at the bushes which almost made Hilda's heart stop. "Like a bush."
No, no, no! Hilda mentally screamed. Do NOT come here! Do NOT!
Bert and Jan went up to the bushes, tiptoeing towards them. "On the count of three, we jump her," he instructed Jan. "Ready?"
"When you are," replied Jan.
But before they could get to three, Pidove flew out at them acting anger and swearing up a storm (by Hilda's translations, that is), making Bert and Jan back away from his intimidation.
"You don't think we made him mad, do you?" asked Jan, concerned.
To up the ante, Pidove flapped his wings to fan air towards them with a low-powered Gust attack, just enough to force them back more.
"I'd take that as a yes," yelled Bert through the wind. "Let's get outta here."
The two knights turned tail to head out of the area ASAP and once they were out of sight, Pidove put off the act as he landed back on the ground and ceased his Gust attack. [The coast is clear, guys,] he chirped to his friends.
Hilda and Oshawott burst out of the bushes, panting from all the tension and excitement of their previous peril. "Nice job, Pidove. It's time we put our plan into action and got this over and done with soon."
Back on Route 1, Cedric and Cheren's situation wasn't exactly getting any better against Bright and Vanessa's Pokemon, even one-on-one separately. After less than a half-hour, things were taking their toll on the two.
"Maractus, one more Pin Missile!" orderd Cedric.
"Defend with Stone Edge!" yelled Vanessa. "Then Rock Blast!"
Both Pokemon fired off their projectile attacks and shockingly matched each one blow for blow with each of Maractus's pins being hit by each of Roggenrola's stones. Then Roggenrola followed up with silver projectiles that were launched directly at Maractus and hit dead on.
"Rufflet, Wing Attack!" commanded Cheren.
"Knock him outta the park, Timburr!" shouted Bright. "Pound him!"
Rufflet flapped his wing to soar straight towards Timburr, determined to strike with his powerful wings. However, the Muscular Pokemon merely sneered with cockiness as he raised his squared piece of timber and swung it like a baseball bat, striking Rufflet away with great force. Rufflet hit the floor and rolled back to a shocked Cheren who was quick to tend to him.
"We can barely touch them like this," said Cheren, gritting his teeth. "What now, Professor?"
"Your guess is as good as mine," said Cedric, very dower.
"It's as simple as pie," said Vanessa. "Just surrender and you'll get out without a scratch as we go our merry way."
[How about you surrender...]
...and get more than just a scratch?]
Hearing a Pokemon cry from both sides, Bright and Vanessa began darting their eyes for the source along with Cheren and Cedric. Before they knew it, Sue swung on her String Shot from the west and Addle from the east as they broke off to let gravity take them down towards Timburr and Roggenrola. They both attacked with their Razor Leaf attack, shooting sharp leaves like blades right at their foes and hitting them hard before landing. Even Bright and Vanessa flinched. Fighting-type Timburr got a good deal of damage while Rock-type Roggenrola was almost devastated if not for his Study ability.
Timburr panted as he tried to recover when from behind him, Herdy dashed out from the eastern bushes and struck him with a Take Down attack like a train running down a car. Timburr collapsed, out of the fight at last, while Herdy merely shuddered, feeling weaken by the attack's recoil. Meanwhile, Watcher leaped out of the western bushes to Low Kick Roggenrola into the air like a living Soccer ball. Roggenrola hit the ground down and out. The four Pokemon gather together to stand with Cedric and Cheren and against Bright and Vanessa.
"What the hell just happened?" stammered an exasperated Bright as he recalled Timburr.
"Don't wild Pokemon leave outside battles well-enough alone?" asked an equally flustered Vanessa as she recalled Roggenrola.
"These are Hilda's friends from the woods," explained Cheren with new-found confidence. "And any friend of Hilda's is a friend of our's."
"Allow me to suggest some friendly advice," said Cedric, feeling confident as well. "Reach for the skies and wait for the police. Don't try anything funny."
Begrudgingly, Bright and Vanessa complied as they're minds raced to figure a way out of their sticky situation. Just then, they heard a loud battle cry as Patrick rushed out of the bushes at a feeble speed, unaware he was too late and situation was resolved. Seeing how Cheren, Cedric and the Pokemon reacted as well, Vanessa acted quickly and took out a capsule from her pocket in order to bring out her own Net Launcher.
[Eat this!] yelled Patrick as he tried Tackling Vanessa's leg with little effect. He looked up and saw that he was in trouble. [Uh oh.]
[Dammit, Patrick,] muttered Watcher.
"How adorable," cooed Vanessa as she pressed the buttons on the handles, shooting the net to ensnare Patrick and reel him up to everyone's shock. "Normally, I'd be against having a hostage, a Pokemon no less, but I'm desperate enough to do it."
Cheren quickly snuck a peek at his Pokedex as he brought up the profile on "Patrat" and saw that Patrick in particular knew a certain move, giving him a plan.
"Hey, four-eyes," said Bright, seeing Cheren's Pokedex. "Put that away and put your hands up!"
I was hoping you'd say that, thought Cheren as he put his Pokedex back into his right pocket. He reached out from his pocket but not empty-handed. "Snivy, Leaf Tornado!" he yelled as he unlocked the Poke Ball and let out his starter.
Eager to vent his rage over three losses in a row, Snivy decided to take what he could get and jumped up to spin in mid-air, forming a green cyclone with glowing green leaves around him. He moved it right over at Bright and Vanessa who braced themselves as they were engulfed by the twister. As Patrick used his Detect move to protect himself, the net torn apart and he was soon free just as the tornado ceased. Cheren took out an empty Poke Ball and tossed it over to hit Patrick, storing him inside for safety, with Snivy grabbing it to bring it over to their side.
"So what was that about a hostage?" snarked Cedric, gleefully.
Bright just threw up his hands in defeat along with Vanessa. "Oh, forget it!"
Up ahead in Town Gate to Accumula, Officer Stanley was on break, eating his lunch while wondering what his wife would like for their coming anniversary. He was settling on a summer vacation to either Undella or Humilau when Aurea Juniper drove into the gate and braked, making the car turn almost 90 degrees and him nearly fall off his chair in surprise.
"Professor Juniper?!" Officer Stanley exclaimed, getting up to see Aurea and Bianca as they got out of the car to capsulize it. "What in blazes are you doing here? You can't drive your car in here!"
"Sir, believe me," insisted Aurea as she pocketed her capsule. "There's a very good reason for all this."
As if to back up her statement on cue, Simon and Sammy touched down with their Jetpacks and rushed into the Town Gate. They stopped with feet away from their targets as they deployed their Klink and Ferroseed at once.
Officer Stanley was naturally taken aback. "Good enough for me," he said.
"Just please get the police," pleaded Bianca. "We'll hold them off for you."
"Thank you," said the officer before running out of the building in order to make an emergency call but Simon was wise to his actions.
"Klink, Thunderbolt!" ordered Simon. "Just enough to knock him out."
Aurea took out a Poke Ball of her own. "Patrat, Detect and intercept the shock!" The Patrat burst out of the ball just as Klink unleashed his electric volts and jumped up to take the attack while protected by a self-made shield, neutralizing it. "I'll take the Ferroseed, Bianca! You get the Klink!"
"Gotcha," replied Bianca, releasing Ducklett. "Ducklett, Water Gun on Klink!"
Ducklett flew right at Klink and spewed water right at it before the two gears literally split up as Ducklett went between them.
"Gear Grind!" ordered Simon.
Klink came back together and sandwiched Ducklett in the middle, squeezing him painfully. Bianca felt Lilly's Poke Ball shaking, eager to get in on the action, and she got an idea.
"Leer 'em, Lilly!" said Bianca, letting her Lillipup out. "Close your eyes, Ducklett!"
Lilly's eye widened as a bright glint in them flashed and made Klink shudder looking at it, letting Ducklett, who closed his eyes, go in the process.
Ducklett flew right on back up to smack both gears with his wings, defeating Klink. Meanwhile, Aurea was finishing her battle up.
"Rollout, Ferroseed!" ordered Sammy.
As ordered, Ferroseed turned on his side and rolled over Patrat who oddly took it without trying to dodge or block. The same thing happened when he reversed to run down his foe once more, making Sammy suspicious as well. When Ferroseed came back for another hit-and-run, however, Patrat rose up and unleashed a huge burst of energy at his foe. Ferroseed wobbled onto his back, out of the fight.
Recalling their Pokemon, Simon and Sammy didn't need words to mutually agree that retreat was the best option so they just bolt back towards Route 1. However, before they could escape Aurea and Bianca, a String Shot from their left was fired, bounding them together and restraining them.
"Ugh, now what's going on?" groaned Simon, tired of all the surprises. "Can this get any worse?"
Out of the left-sided bushes came Leavanny and Ciccino and from the right, Stoutland and Tranquil burst out to help surround the two Knights.
"That was a rhetorical question..."
Bert yawned as the tedium of the whole search began to set in but neither he nor Jan could afford to slack off with only less than ten minutes left until the Triad arrived. Forcing himself to stay focused, he kept looking around the woods for Hilda. Somebody throw me a bone already. We're running out of time.
Jan was worried about her lover's state of mind as he seemed increasingly on edge. Can't say I blame him, she thought, gulping. But jeez, is he scaring me. Hopefully, Hilda would be caught and they could all relax for the rest of the day.
As if to answer their pleads, the loud rustling of a bush behind them got their attention and they took out their Poke Balls in the event of a battle ensuing. They looked at each other and nodded, knowing they both were thinking the same thing, before turning their attention back at the bush.
"Whoever's in there, make this easy on yourself and get out of there," demanded Bert. "We don't want to hurt you but we'd advise that you don't force our hand."
However, instead of Hilda like they were hoping, Purrloin stumbled out of the bushes on all fours and collapsed down to the ground, groaning and moaning as she pretended to be very sick. She even threw in a few coughs and wheezes for added effect. Bert and Jan dropped their guards and put their Poke Balls away as they went over to tend to the seemingly ill Pokemon.
"Oh my goodness," gasped Jan, looking down on the little Purrloin with sympathy. "The poor thing looks awful. It needs first aid. Bert, the capsules!"
"Okay, but we better make this quick," said Bert, slightly griping. Still, as a Knight, he couldn't let a Pokemon suffer and not do a thing about it.
While maintaining her act, Purrloin watched as Bert took out the Capsule case from his pocket and held it right over her. The perfect positioning. Before Bert could open the case, Purrloin dropped her facade, scooped up some dirt quickly with both paws and threw it all at his face and Jan's. This caused them both to stand back up in pain as they tried to wipe out the dirt from their eyes and Bert to drop the unopened Capsule Case which Purrloin caught in both her paws. Her job done, she ran back into the bushes she came from before Bert and Jan realized what just happened.
"My Capsule case!" exclaimed Bert, patting himself over. "That little thief stole it from me!"
"But you had the Containment Capsule!" Jan replied, trying her damnedest to be calm. "What do we do now?"
"How does surrender sound?" said an familiar voice as the two Knights heard someone else come from the bushes. And lo and behold, it was the girl of the hour, Hilda, accompanied by Oshawott, Pidove and Purrloin while looking confident and triumphant. "I hear prison food's not as bad as you'd think."
[Not as bad as that one-liner, I hope,] Pidove whispered to Oshawott, rolling his eyes.
Not wasting anymore time, Bert and Jan got poised for action with their Poke Balls back out and unlocked while putting their guard right back up. "I get it now," said Bert as he glanced at Pidove and Purrloin briefly. "Those were your Pokemon but we thought they were wild. You're a regular Nancy Drew, aren't you?"
"That's not even the half of it," said Hilda as she took out the Containment Capsule from Bert's case to pocket it. "I only pretended to have the other capsule when I really gave it to Cheren so at least those would be safe. Now I've gotten all sixty through this elaborate gambit."
"Not if we hold you hostage for the other half," retorted Jan, "Right after we relieve you of your Capsule and Pokemon. Sorry about this but we have a job to do." She thrusted out her Poke Ball. "Sewaddle!" Hearing his Trainer, Jan's Sewaddle burst out of the Poke Ball to stand in front of her, ready for action.
"Sandile, you two!" yelled Bert, thrust out his Poke Ball. The ball opened up in half to let out a small, brown crocodile-like Pokemon that already intimidated Hilda's Pokemon, thanks to his Intimidate ability.
"Well, good to know we might have the advantage in types and number," said Hilda, feeling triumphant already and borderline cocky. "You may as well turn yourselves in now to save yourselves the trouble."
"Really now?" said Bert, smirking. "Where's your little kitty?"
When Hilda turned to look down where Purrloin was along with Oshawott and Pidove, all of their bravado shattered when they saw how she wasn't there, having flown the coup. "Oh, you have got to be KIDDING ME!" snapped Hilda, instantly frustrated. "Would it've killed her to be a little more selfless for a few more minutes?"
[Wouldn't surprise me,] Oshawott whispered to Pidove, just as upset as his friends were.
"Allow me to reiterate," said Bert, getting serious. "Surrender and you won't get hurt. We're at least protected by these suits while you're as fragile as a vase."
"Wanna bet?" said Hilda, a bit flustered still but willing to fight. "Pidove, Air Cutter on Sewaddle! Oshawott, Watter Gun on Sandile!"
Oshawott spewed out his big burst of water straight at Sandile while Pidove flapped his wings swiftly to direct a current of air with little shockwaves right towards Sewaddle. However, Sandile dived deep down into the ground before the water could even touch him while Sewaddle spat his String Shot straight up at a study tree branch straight above him and reeled himself up to avoid the Air Cutter.
[Where'd he go?] asked Oshawott, his eyes darting around for where Sandile would pop back up.
[Hey, get back down here, you!] Pidove barked at Sewaddle while still hovering in the air.
"Stone Edge on Pidove!" ordered Bert.
Almost instantly, Sandile burst up from underground and produced multiple sharp stones that circled his body like planets around a sun that zoomed off at his will. Before Pidove could properly react, he was struck by the stones and took great damage from the Rock-type attack, hitting the ground and barely able to rise.
Unlike Pidove, Hilda didn't beat around the bush. "Oshawott, throw your Razor Shell!"
Wanting to avenge his defeated teammate, Oshawott removed his Scalchop from his bellybutton, formed his Shell Blade in a curved shape and threw it at Sandile as it spun like a boomerang. Sandile stood up to attempt deflecting it but was slashed by the blade, taking plenty of damage from the Water-type attack. The Scalchop returned to Oshawott so he could put it back, satisfied with his attack only for something to slip his mind.
"Razor Leaf!" yelled Jan.
Sewaddle snapped his string to land back on the ground and fire sharp-edged leaf projectiles straight at Oshawott who froze in fright. The Sea Otter Pokemon was hit dead-on and fell down on his back, also greatly damaged by the Grass-type attack. Checking her Pokedex, Hilda grimaced at how low Oshawott and Pidove's battle power and didn't want to push them any further when they had little chance of winning.
There's only one chance I have left, Hilda thought as she recalled her Pokemon into their Poke Balls. I only hope I can reach Accumula in time.
"So you're finally showing some common sense," said Bert. "At least, you know when to call it quits."
"Whoever said I was doing that?" said Hilda. "Sorry if I got your hopes up too high but I'm more stubborn than you'd expect. So... anybody in the mood for a race?"
After running east for a minute or two, Purrloin stopped in a small clearing to catch her breath and look back the way she came, smirking as she thought of Hilda, Oshawott and Pidove. Sure, she agreed to help them get back the capsule but she never said anything about battling for Hilda. She wasn't in the mood for another fight with and Trainer or not and it wasn't her fault that Hilda worded her favor like that. Purrloin would just wait it out until Hilda won the battle. She sighed delightfully, knowing that she'd soon be in Pancake paradise.
However, her daydreaming was interrupted when her sharp ears picked up on the sounds of rapid footsteps and voices heading her way. Though she normally would've cleared the area, she felt curious to know what was going on and ran right to hide behind a nearby tree so she could watch. In a few seconds, Hilda ran into the area when Sewaddle caught up to her enough to ensnare her with String Shot, bounding her arms to her sides as she struggled to break free. Bert and Jan arrived with Sandile and were pleased to see that they were winning.
"Now that you've gotten that out of your system, do you give up now?" asked Bert, folding his arms like he was in charge. "I'm not making any bluffs when I say that you have one last chance to surrender or else I can't guarantee your safety."
"Absolutely not!" Hilda spat back as she turned around to face her foe.
Purrloin gulped from observing everything as it was clear to her that Hilda was in grave danger, death being a likely outcome for her. By no mean did she think of herself as some goody-two-shoes like Hilda but she couldn't bear the thought of watching someone die. She had to do something and fast. Luckily, her battle with Oshawitt was fresh in her mind...
"Then I'm afraid that I'll have no other choice," Bert said solemnly. "Our king wished for no mortality rate of any kind but I'm sure he'll understand my choice, given the circumstances. Ready, Jan?"
"If I must," said Jan, grimly.
Hilda gritted her teeth and prepared for the pain but before she could even hear the order, a concentrated column of water came from her left and hit Sandile by surprise, giving him enough damage to slump down in defeat. Bert, Jan, Sewaddle and Hilda turned their attention to this, too shocked for words, just before a familiar violet blur raced by to cut the long strand of string from Sewaddle. After slashing the string that bounded Hilda's arms, Purrloin revealed herself by coming back to stand before Hilda, poised for battle.
"B-but- How? Why?" stammered Bert, trying to form coherent sentences in his flabbergasted state with Jan.
Purrloin said nothing as she got down to business. She started by making an adorable wink and giggle to Charm Sewaddle, making him freeze in his infatuated state. She then brought out her claws and dashed over to slash Sewaddle multiple time with her Fury Swipes. While Sewaddle was still disoriented, she recreated Oshawott's Razor Shell with her Assist and slashed him once and then twice, defeating the Sewing Pokemon then and there. Hilda smiled as the feeling of triumph sank in and she actually felt touched that an old enemy of her's stuck her neck out to help her.
Bert sighed in complete defeat and put his hands behind his head after recalling his Sandile. "Jan, don't do anything else. We're surrendering."
"Yes, sir," sighed Jan, recalling Sewaddle and putting her hand behind her head. "Well, Hilda, you win. Take us away."
"Good," said Hilda acting as though her peril had never occurred. "We'll go to Route 1 and follow the road to Accumula where we'll turn you both in. Purrloin will watch you while we walk so don't-"
"-try anything funny, blablabla, we know," interrupted Jan in a jaded tone of voice. "Just do it already."
"And remember this," said Bert. "Our organization is much more than just us six here. Even if we're imprisoned, our goal will be realized with or without us so don't think you've won just yet."
With that settled, Hilda walked off east according to her compass while Purrloin walked on her hind legs backwards to keep an eye on Bert and Jan who followed as well.
"Thanks for bailing me out back there, Purrloin," whispered Hilda. "I honestly never expect that you had any decency like that in you."
Purrloin blushed bashfully, actually feeling nice about doing a good deed, but tried not give into such sappiness. [I only did what had to be done,] she said awkwardly. [I'm not cruel enough to let someone die before my eyes. Plus, I would've missed out on some great pancakes.]
Hilda could easy see though Purrloin's facade but decided to not press that issue for now. "On that last part, I'll still get you that stack of pancakes since you're last minute saved made up for ditching us. On another note, would you like to join my Pokemon team?"
[Wait, what?] asked Purrloin in confusion. [Whatever happened to hating my guts?]
"Well, you don't seem to be all that bad all things considered," answered Hilda. "You at least seem to have a something of a conscience. Not to mention that you'd be a major help in battle and get to see all new place outside these woods. Oh, and if you're good, I get you whatever foods you want. Provide it doesn't go over-budget..."
[Well, I always wanted to eat pizza one more time,] said Purrloin, mulling over the offer before deciding. [Alright, it's a deal. I was getting bored of these woods anyways.]
Bert and Jan noticed how Purrloin and Hilda conversed with each other, reminding them of their ultimate superior, the King of Team Plasma himself. Perhaps Bright and Vanessa were onto something, Bert thought. Ghetsis has to know about this.
"So fearless leader," whispered Jan, "got a foolproof escape plan?"
"Well, I'm hoping the other are okay so they can help," answered Bert quietly. "Should we run into them on the road, Hilda will be outnumbered one to four."
Hilda's X-Transceiver ringtone broke the silence at last and she instantly answered it. "Hey, Bianca. I didn't realize I got reception around here."
"Thank goodness for that," said Bianca, happily. "I've been trying to reach you. We've just round up all the other four criminals and we're coming to help you out."
"No need," replied Hilda. "I'm bringing them to you. Let's rendezvous on Route 1."
Bert made a very deadpan expression in response to what he had just heard. "The universe just loves to kick us around today, doesn't it?" he sighed in resignation.
None of them were aware of a figure watching them. Well, this was an interesting outcome, it thought before disappearing into the shadows.
All three groups reconvened on Route 1, just less than a mile away from the Accumula Town Gate. The entire Seventh Squadron was rounded up and kept watch by Cedric and Aurea who had their sixty Lab Pokemon returned by Cheren and Hilda respectively. As the two Professors watched the culprits, the three Trainers and Hilda's woodland friends wrapped things up amongst themselves, explaining everything that happened from their point of view.
[Did you smash you head in or something?!] asked Watcher, speaking for everybody else's shock and confusion as well. [You're not actually trusting Purrloin, are you?!]
"Not entirely," said Hilda, glancing at Purrloin's Poke Ball with her recalled in. "But when she saved me, I felt that I could maybe give her the benefit of the doubt and help her become a true friend of mine."
[I guess she might not be so hopeless,] said Herdy, mulling over it. [I only hope you know what you're doing.]
[But if she tried to pull a fast one on you...] began Sue.
[Just holler and we'll be there to set her straight!] finished Addle.
"Thanks but I think I'll manage," said Hilda.
[Oh, and tell Bianca that I hope she takes good care of Lilly,] said Herdy. [Even if she is a real pain in the tail.]
Hilda relayed the message to Bianca, translating Herdy's words. [Well, I'll make sure she grows up into a well-trained Stoutland.]
[And take good care of Patrick, Cheren,] said Watcher. [He was pretty reckless but if anyone can mold him into a good battler, it's you.]
"I'll try the best I can," replied Cheren after Hilda relayed the message.
Just then, everybody heard police sirens approaching their way and saw cop riding motorcycles out from the Town Gate. Everything seemed to be fine when a black helicopter soared in, hovering in low directly above the Professor and the Seventh Squadron. The blowing wind made it hard for everyone to open their eyes properly and were confused by the chopper's sudden appearance. The cops stopped as well, wondering what the heck was going on. Bert and the other knew exactly what it was going by the insignia on the side
"Everyone, execute procedure #12," said Bert in his leader-esque tone of voice. "Shield your eyes now."
Since Bert had sunglasses on already, Jan, Bright, Vanessa, Simon and Sammy had to take out their own sunglasses from their pockets and while the Professor weren't looking, their leader gave the thumbs-up to the chopper. What followed was a sudden bright flash projected by a search lamp of sorts that forced everyone but the Seventh Squadron to shield their eyes.
When the light died down and everyone could open their eyes again, the first thing they noticed was the Seventh Squadron's disappearance and the helicopter flying away. Hilda gritted her teeth in disappointment but deep down, she couldn't help but feel this great sense of foreboding as she couldn't help but remember Bert's words about their larger organization.
The six Knights entered the chopper's cockpit to find three white-haired men dressed in Ninja-esque get-ups in the pilot seats. They were Ghetsis's right hand men, the Shadow Triad themselves. Before Bert could say anything, the one to their right spoke as if he anticipated his words.
"We were observing the whole operation as it went on," said the Triad member emotionless. "Ghetsis only gave the order to terminate the whole debacle and declare it a failure a few minutes ago."
"Wait, you were watching?" said a shocked Vanessa. "Well, why didn't you lend us a hand with your crazy ninja skills?"
"That wasn't what we were ordered to do," answered the member to their left. "We would've helped had we not been disallowed to intervene."
"Although you mission did deteriorate into a big mess in the end, your dedication was admirable," added the one in between. "Had that girl and her friend not have gotten in the way you would've succeeded."
"Well, that's nice of you," said Sammy, optimistically.
"I'd recommend you return to the passenger compartment as we reach HQ up north," said the member to the left. "We're going to pick up Ghetsis for the rally this afternoon in Accumula."
Following orders, the Seventh Squadron returned to their seat and shut the door behind them. Assured that they were out of earshot, the three began speak amongst themselves.
"That girl was quite impressive," said the one to the right. "Her interference in the mission really shook things up and luck certainly was on her side."
"Ghetsis will indeed like our findings," said the member in the middle. "Her willpower was indomitable and she never gave in when things looked bleak. Just like a Hero..."
As the subway train pulled into Accumula Station, the doors opened to let a few passengers disembark. One in particular was a green-haired young man accompanied by a Zorua, a Woobat and a Darumaka following him. Zorua and Darumaka were particularly excitable over being in a brand new place to explore as they skipped ahead with glee with Woobat nagging them to control themselves.
The young man smiled at this as he couldn't blame his two friends. It was very rare they could get out into the world like this and he too had his curiosities. Not to mention that the day they had anticipated for a long time had came and a top priority of their's was to reach their goal at all costs. As the saying went, he had a date with destiny...
Author's Note: And that's it for now. I'm planning to have the whole story worked out before I continue. It may take months but hopefully, it'll be for the best. In the meantime, please tell me what you think of these first fourth chapters as an opening and maybe what you hope to see in the future. Bye bye for now.
The way the move Assist is depicted here differs from the games.
I intend to touch up on Ducklett and Rufflet's personalities as I'd rather not leave them as blatant plot devices used for this chapter only.
Next time, we'll meet everyone's favorite Child of Pokemon...
Pokemon: The Black & White Adventure: 14 year old Hilda is a Pokemon Trainer with a secret: she can talk to Pokemon. After setting off into Unova with her starter, she gets involved in the affairs of Team Plasma and becomes acquainted with N, a mysterious guy her age with the exact same abilities as her. While enjoying her life, a tangled web of mystery is weaved around her and the reveal may shock her beyond belief.
Join the adventure by clicking the link above. Read & Review.