"Littleroot Town... now, this town is even more dull than Oldale! I didn't know that was even possible."
The small girl put her hands on her hips as she stood before the sign that marked the beginning of Littleroot. She walked with quick, determined feet through the streets, wondering why there were hardly any roadsigns at all. Even Oldale was civilized enough to have signs! Finally, she found a sign in the town's center - or what she assumed was the center, there wasn't really anything that said so or made it look important in any way - which directed her to the laboratory of professor Birch. Grinning, she started walking even faster in that direction, her dark mantle flowing behind her in an almost ominous way.
The laboratory was at the edge of town, with its own garden and a few side buildings around it. It looked too quaint to be a high tech lab, Arla thought, but since she really wanted to get a pokémon, she just walked up and rang the doorbell. An assistant to the professor opened up and she was shown inside.
The professor had already given out some pokémon this day. Arla hoped that she wouldn't be too late and get something ugly. Or even worse... something WEAK. She didn't want to ruin her journey before it had even started. The pokémon the professor showed her weren't too impressive, actually. There was a Slugma, a Zigzagoon and a Phanpy. While the latter sure held promise for becoming strong at some point, Arla hesitated. The pokémon played with each other in the lab's garden while Arla and Birch stood by and watched.
"There is another one," Birch said. "But it's a bit odd, haha."
"I can deal with odd!" Arla said. She felt almost stricken when he had laughed after saying that. She was a bit odd too...
"But it might take a firm hand to get this one to-"
"I'LL TAKE HIM! Where is he?" Arla said, interrupting the researcher and looking around for a fourth pokémon dozing off somewhere.
"Alright... He is over here," the professor said and led her to a pond in the garden.
"A water type?" Arla said, furrowing her brow as she sat down and leaned over the water. Her face reflected in the surface of the pond. Until something jumped up at her from below, taking her by surprise and making her scream. She was thrown backwards onto the grass and when she raised her head to look, eyes wide, she saw that a blue ball of fat was sitting on top of her stomach, giggling frantically.
"It's this one?" she said, sitting up and picking up the creature, holding him at arm's distance. He was quite heavy for being so small. Must be all the fat.
"Yes. That's Spheal," Birch said, raising his hands apologetically while the other pokémon flocked around his feet to curiously watch what was going on by the pond. "He is quite immature."
Spheal blinked with its black, round eyes at the pink haired girl, who looked a bit disgusted. But she wouldn't reject a pokémon just because it was a bit different. We are all immature at some point in our lives. This one might just need a firm hand to get on the right track. The track towards greatness!
She stood up, still holding the Spheal, who looked like it was wondering what was going on. "I'll take him," Arla said, making everyone in the garden surprised.
Not long after that, Arla was back on Route 101 again. She had no intention of staying in that dull down for longer than necessary. She needed to be on her way already! And she needed to train her... um, pokémon. Holding up her hand, she examined the pokéball inside it. Beneath its red lid, a little sea lion pokémon was. In energy form, of course. Could she really make that thing strong. Well, she needed to try. She sent the pokémon out of its pokéball and it materialized in the tall grass next to the road. He looked up at her expectantly.
"First of all, we can't call you Spheal. That just doesn't have a nice ring to it," Arla said and then thought hard. Spheal raised an eyebrow at her. "Banko! Your name will be Banko. No objections."
Banko didn't even seem to think about objecting, he simply stuck his tongue out like a dog and looked happy. Then his tongue went inside his mouth all of a sudden and he froze, as if he was listening closely.
"What? Do you see a wild pokémon?" Arla asked, throwing herself down onto the ground beside her pokémon and looking out into the grass. She couldn't see anything... wait! The grass rustled. There was a wild pokémon there!
"Alright! We will battle it. Banko?"
The Spheal started behaving like a dog again, even letting out a barking noise. Arla shook her head. He wasn't just immature, he seemed to have identity issues as well. Hoping that her pokémon hadn't scared away the wild one already, she pulled up the pokédex that professor Birch had given her and analyzed the Spheal. His ability was Thick Fat and his known powers were Defense Curl, Powder Snow and... Aqua Ring? That sounded interesting. Arla didn't really know what it was, even though she was a pokémon training phantast. Better test it out.
"Banko, use Aqua Ring!" she said, standing up fast.
Banko obliged and closed his eyes. From his body, a number of small lights erupted. They floated out into the air and formed a ring around him. Then they stopped glowing and Arla noticed that they were actually flying orbs of water. Huh, what's the point of that? Before she could examine them more closely, a wild pokémon sprung out at them though. It came like a cannon ball out from the grass - and it kind of looked like a cannon ball too.
Banko was hit by the surprise attack and rolled around on the ground. When he came to a stop, one of the orbs orbiting him suddenly flew at him and was absorbed by his body. He opened his eyes with a more determined look. Arla gasped and let her pokédex read his data.
"They... heal you. Aqua Ring is a passive healing move! That's amazing, really."
The creature that had scared them was a Seedot. Arla didn't need a pokédex to identify it, but she let the machine read its data anyways. Better register everyone she could! Now, what could her pokémon do against that? It didn't look too intimidating actually. It's eyes were a bit creepy, but it was even tinier than Spheal.
As she was thinking, the Seedot's body suddenly stiffened and shimmered. The pokédex that she was still pointing at it, informed Arla that it was the attack Harden. The most passive attack there is.
"Hah, we can show off our defenses too. Banko, Defense Curl!"
Banko's body shimmered now, and he curled up into an impenetrable ball of fat, face not even visible. The two pokémon stood there, flexing their hardened, curled bodies... and Arla felt that this was completely pointless. A battle cannot be fought with passive attacks alone. She sighed.
"Change of strategy. Powder Snow, Banko!"
The Spheal curled up and gave Arla a confused look. But he would have shrugged his shoulders if he had had any, and just went along with the orders. He inhaled and blew out a stream of white powdery snow straight at the grass type, who obviously was rather weak towards this. Hardening one's body won't make you warmer in a snowstorm. Seedot started shivering as its face got covered by snow. But it didn't back down just yet. Instead it suddenly dashed forward and headbutted the ball of fat hard in the side. It rolled over several meters again... but another orb form the aqua ring healed some of the damage after not too long. Still, he seemed to have gotten hurt this time.
Arla once again made use of the pokédex, which pinged and told her that the Seedot had used Bide. A move that took the power from an enemy's attack and paid it back double. Since the snow move seemed to have hurt it a lot, that Bide would have been quite hard on Banko now...
"Heh. I thought it would be boring to battle with weak, low leveled pokémon. But you guys are really quite interesting!" Arla laughed, content. "I will capture you," she added towards the Seedot, who jumped at her words, as if terrified.
"We'll have to take it out in our next hit, so that it won't have time to use Bide and escape!" Arla told her pokémon, who pulled itself together and inhaled. "That's right, Powder Snow!"
The snow attack hit Seedot in the back, as it had just turned around to flee. This time it was enough. The wild pokémon had to pay for having jumped and scared them earlier. It fell down, covered in snow and shuddering. Arla wasted no time, throwing a pokéball and watching the pokémon get sucked inside as energy.
"Hey, Banko," she told her Spheal as they were watching the pokéball roll on the ground, blinking. Banko looked up with his innocent black eyes. "You're not too shabby."
((OOC: new page dance~ ))