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Avarice (PG-15)

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction' started by catzeye, Aug 12, 2011.

  1. catzeye

    catzeye Writer's Block

    Warning: This story will involve some profanity, violence, death and the use of a drug(steroids). Please do not read if that offends you in any way.

    Welcome to my first serious fanfiction story. This story is set in a region called Arcana and it is about what happens when trainers put their Pokemon on steroids. I hope that you will enjoy this story. I appreciate any constructive criticism because I truly want to grow as a writer.

    Prologue: Blatant Disregard
    Chapter 1: Moving Yet Again
    Chapter 2: Pandemonium
    Chapter 3: A New Start
    Chapter 4: Two Sides of the Same Token
    Chapter 5: WHAT?


    Prologue: Blatant Disregard

    21 years ago

    “P-President sir, I’m t-terribly sorry. B-but the workers and th-their Pokemon just c-can’t possibly r-r-re-reach the qu-quotas you set,” a young male researcher of average height stammered to the broad-shouldered man sitting behind the mahogany desk. He regretted suggesting drawing sticks to tell the commander in chief of Arcana the bad news of the research. It was just his luck that he was the one who ended up with the shortest stick. The researcher looked up to meet the hard gaze of the president. Cold grey eyes pierced scared brown ones, causing the researcher to drop his head and bite his quivering bottom lip.

    “What the hell! Those miners and lumberjacks swore to me they were the best in the trade,” The president exclaimed, pounding his fist on the desk causing his coffee mug to rattle. The researcher who stood before him leapt back and yelped in surprise. He then tried his best to recompose himself, but the hairs on the back of his neck were still standing on end.

    So this is what the meant when they said President Warburton had a temper, the young researcher though to his self. Without warning the president jumped up from his desk and began pacing, his light blond mullet swishing behind him. Wrinkles began to appear on his forehead as the man was trying to gather his thoughts. As he continued pacing in his office, occasionally he would mutter something incomprehensible to himself.

    “I’m just g-going to go,” the young researcher said as he was slowly headed for the door. He didn’t think it was polite to stand and watch a man pace and mutter to himself. The president looked up to the man to tell him ‘Okay’ but stopped. The sight of the young researcher gave the middle-aged man a bright idea. A smirk formed on his lips which caused shivers to run down the young researcher’s spine.

    “You. Get your fellow scientists to come up with a way for those workers to meet my quotas. I want whatever you guys come up with done in a year. Got that?” President Warburton said in a firm tone. The young researcher stared in shock for a second, before nodding swiftly. With that the researcher spun on his heels, darted out the door and dashed through the corridor without once looking back.

    The president watched the man flee out of sight before running his hand through his light blond hair. A small sigh escaped his lips as he went to sit back down in his red velvet chair. If there was one thing President Alan Warburton couldn’t stand, it was incompetent people. Those workers he brought in from the other regions told him they could cut down those trees and mine those stones. But according to the report he was just briefed on, these lumberjacks and miners weren’t half as good as they made themselves out to be.

    “That little boy and his team better come up with something,” President Warburton said gruffly before taking a sip of coffee. He was determined to make Arcana the number one exporter of raw goods in the world. But more importantly he wanted to have enough money to flaunt in the faces of everyone who doubted him.


    Meanwhile the young man who had the lovely task of reporting the results of the research to Arcana’s president burst through the doors of the research lab and fell to the floor pale as if he had seen Giratina. His colleagues stared at him in bewilderment. Was going to give a report really that bad of an experience? But then they remembered who they had sent. Timmy Smith, the man who was afraid of his own shadow.

    “Mr. Smith, get off the floor and tell us the results of the meeting,” snapped the female standing in the front of the little crowd. She had thick wavy brown hair and an olive skin tone. Her name was Dr. Henrietta Cornell, the top scientist in the Arcana region, and she had no patience for Timmy’s sniveling. Shakily, he stood up and straightened himself up before speaking. Dr. Cornell gave Mr. Smith a stern look with her hazel eyes that said "Get on with it. I don't have all day."

    “P-president Warburton wants us to find a way to allow the workers and their Pokemon to reach his daily goals,” he said. Murmurs spread across the lab.

    “Is the president serious?” asked a bespectacled female as she dropped her stack of papers on the floor.

    “I have research I need to focus on!” exclaimed a few researchers from various parts of the lab.

    “Those quotas are ridiculous as they are. What the hell does he expect us to do about it?” grumbled a balding black man as he gripped the pencil in his hand so hard that it snapped in two.

    “And that’s not the worst part,” Mr. Smith added, “he wants the product we come up with done in a year.”

    Hell broke loose as everyone felt that the president was out of his mind. How could they come up with something usable in such a short amount of time? The researchers worried about their jobs if they couldn’t make the deadline. The image of repo men coming to take their houses and cars frightened them. It caused the usually calm, rational scientists to freak out. Timmy Smith curled up in the fetal position due to the perceived hopelessness of the situation. Dr. Cornell, while undeniably pissed at the situation, kept a cool and collected appearance for the most part and shouted for everyone to shut their traps.

    “Look everyone,” she said “I understand that President Warburton’s request is absolutely insane. But I do know a way we can get him a product in the time allotted.”

    All the scientists looked at their superior in surprise. Mr. Smith uncurled himself and looked up to Dr. Cornell.

    “I’m sure most of you are aware of those steroids designed to power up Pokemon in a short amount of time. We could just create a similar drug to give to the workers’ Pokemon. They have recipes for it all over Internet,” She continued, feeling quite proud of herself for her ingenious solution. No extensive work necessary. Everybody could get back to the research they came to this colonial region for.

    However, her colleagues stared at her with sheer horror on their faces. Everyone knew that steroids were made illegal by the International Pokemon League Association. Sure Arcana was a colonial region, and therefore not subject to intense scrutiny as regions like Kanto, but they still couldn’t just blatantly disregard the rules. They IPLA would have their degrees, and their professional lives would be ruined. It wasn’t just the legal implications that frightened them, but the moral ones as well. Having gone to college, they had witnessed videos of Pokemon who were put on these drugs by their trainers or organizations like Team Rocket. They witnessed videos of the Pokemon going into uncontrollable rages attacking anything in sight, including their own trainer. So to hear the top scientist in the region suggest without hesitation to do it was simply unreal. Worried murmurs spread amongst the researchers.

    “Look I don’t know about you guys, but I just want to continue my soil research. So we just modify one of the recipes, call it a vitamin or something and the president leaves us alone. Case closed,” Dr. Cornell finished. Some of the scientists actually agreed with Dr. Cornell’s proposal while others were still opposed to the plan. Surprisingly, the one to speak up was none other than timid Timmy Smith.

    “C-can’t we th-think of another option? Like an exercise program?” Timmy Smith pleaded while shaking his short brown hair. The thought of knowingly making something harmful didn’t sit right with him.

    “Mr. Smith you were the one who informed us that President Warburton wanted a product from our department within a year did you not?” Dr. Cornell asked.

    “Yes, yes I was.”

    “Then tell me, do you really expect us to come up with an exercise program to fit all those different Pokemon working in those forests and mines within a year when we can make a drug that is one size fits all?”

    “But this is illegal. This is immoral. I say screw President Warburton’s time limit!” Timmy yelled. Everyone, including Dr. Cornell was surprised at his outburst. Never had they heard Timmy speak in a tone that was more than a timid whisper in all their years of working with him.

    Dr. Cornell ran a hand through her thick hair as she contemplated what Mr. Smith had said. True, she would like nothing more than to screw with the president’s plan to expand the market for Arcanian wood and stone. However, she knew she’d be out of a job and out of money to finance her research if she did. President Warburton was serious when it came to matters of money, and would not hesitate to do whatever it takes to make sure his pockets were filled. Calmly she walked over to Timmy and gently laid her hands on his shoulder. Timmy stared into her eyes with a fierce expression she had never seen before in his eyes.

    “So Mr. Smith, let’s say we ignore President Warburton’s words. In a year, are you ready to be the one to tell him that we decided to ignore his demands and that we cost him millions in revenue?” she asked in simple tone. She watched as the color and fight drained from his face. Dr. Cornell knew that Timmy was absolutely terrified of the Arcanan President.

    “Look,” she said, trying to comfort him “I know you don’t want to do this. But this is the easiest way to get that man off our backs.”

    With that Dr. Cornell turned away from Timmy Smith, and asked the other scientists if they had anymore objections. No one spoke up, so plans to create the performance enhancement drug started immediately.The scientists began to scurry around the lab. Some went online to research recipes for the drug. Others began looking for required materials.

    However Timmy Smith slipped through the chaos and walked out the lab without anyone noticing. He walked straight towards the parking lot and got into his Jeep. He plugged the keys into the ignition yet he didn’t start the car. In his mind the events that occurred just a few minutes ago were swimming in his mind. One statement kept on repeating itself in his head.

    But this is the easiest way to get that man off our backs.

    “But the easiest way is not always the right way,” Timmy Smith said quietly to himself. He stayed in the car pondering whether or not he should help out with the project or quit and find some work somewhere else.


    Dr. Henrietta Cornell stood in the same spot that Timmy Smith stood in one year before. She watched as President Warburton scanned over the report. Dr. Cornell kept on tapping her foot, a sign that she was nervous about the situation. She had every reason to be nervous since her team of scientists had just recreated a drug that was deemed illegal by the IPLA. All she ever wanted was to study the soil in the Arcana region. All the sureness she had in her plan a year ago had left the building.

    I hope this man isn’t a stickler for the rules, she thought as the man in front of her placed the document he was reading to the side and looked up at her. A small smile played upon his lips.

    “So you plan to put those workers’ Pokemon on steroids?” he asked. Dr. Cornell looked at the man in shock. There was nothing in the document that explicitly referred to the drug as a steroid. She had underestimated President Warburton’s intelligence.

    “That was the only option our team deemed viable given your time constraints,” she replied rather honestly. Her heart pounded against her chest as she awaited his answer. He gave her hard stare that caused her to shudder a bit.

    “Okay then, have them on your steroid by the end of this month,” President Warburton said simply. Dr. Cornell’s jaw hit the floor. She was astounded that he actually agreed to use her plan despite knowing that it was illegal. She wasn’t about to question his decision though, the sooner he got what he wanted to sooner he was out of her hair. At that point that was all that mattered to her.

    “Will do sir,” she said after regaining her composure. With that she walked briskly out the door.
    Last edited: Oct 25, 2011
  2. Rediamond

    Rediamond Middle of nowhere

    Yay, I can actually return a review of yours on Serebii! I was interested in the concept of the fic for a few months, and it's interesting to see how you pulled it together. I must say, Michael Crichton got me hooked onto the entire "does ethics override progress in science" issue a few years ago, and I was curious to see how that would work in the Pokemon World.

    You did a rather nice job of that. A "colonial" region of the league concerned almost entirely on profit and outside of mainstream regulation is an interesting concept in and of itself, and it suits the main concept quite well. Unfortunately, I can see the "vitamin" coming into use in the way you described quite easily.

    The only thing I noticed were references to President Charger. Is that possibly the next president, and you mixed up the name? Just curious, as I thought that was a mistake.

    Beyond that, it's a very nice concept that is being pulled off quite well. On another note, is it really just going to be two chapters and a prologue, or are those just the ones you have names for?
  3. catzeye

    catzeye Writer's Block

    The whole "ethics overriding progress" is something that will be brought up again in this story as time goes on. It's an issue that would be quite prevalent in the Pokemon world since Pokemon are held in such high regards.

    The fact that Arcana is a colonial region and therefore outside of mainstream regulation is half of the reason why all the chaos happens.

    Yeah I mixed up the names. Late in the writing process I had changed the president's name from Charger to Warburton. I accidentally missed some of the instances where I used Charger. Thank you for pointing that out.

    It's going to be a lot longer than 2 chapters. Those are just the ones that have already been written so far.

    Thank you so much for the review! =D
    Last edited: Aug 31, 2011
  4. catzeye

    catzeye Writer's Block

    Chapter 1

    Alright so here is the first chapter. Credit to Rediamond for the name Vitanergy.

    Chapter 1: Moving yet Again

    Friday, July 15th 2015

    It was a nice late-July day in Goldenrod City. Downtown Goldenrod was teeming with merry trainers young and old, from all over the world. Some of the newer ones had come to town thinking they’d have an easy time beating a Normal-type gym leader. They would be in for a nice surprise when they met Whitney’s Miltank.

    Farther away, in the quieter suburbs, there was one young lady, perched on her family’s balcony, who was bored out of her mind. Alexis Palmers was a 17 year old who had never been on a Pokemon journey. Her dad only allowed her to get the Trainer’s permit, which was necessary to legally own Pokemon. Her dad always told her she wasn’t fit to be a travelling trainer, although Alexis obviously felt otherwise. She would ask her mom, since only one parent was needed to sign the consent forms for a full Pokemon License, but her mom could barely get out of bed some days. Asking her to drive to the Trainer’s Commission Center and sit through the consent process would just be too much to ask.

    A calm breeze blew through the air, which toyed around her neck length red hair. Alexis sighed as she let her bright green eyes gaze upon her neighborhood. For her, getting a chance to have an adventure would be the best thing to ever happen to her. She didn’t care what type of adventure it was, so long as she could make interesting memories for her and her Pokemon.

    Only seven more months and I’ll be free, Alexis thought wistfully. In only 7 months she’d be 18, a legal adult in the Pokemon world. She could get her Trainer’s license herself with no parental consent. She could finally have access to all the privileges her peers had. More importantly, she would be able to prove her dad wrong about her not being cut out for Pokemon training. Alexis began to daydream about the adventures she would have. She imagined herself directing her Pokemon in contests, in battles and in Pokeathlons…

    The loud roar of a Hummer broke through Alexis’ fantasies and causing her to yelp in surprise. She looked down towards her driveway, and sure enough, her dad’s Hummer was pulling into it. It was only one o’clock, and her dad usually didn’t get home until six. The fact that he was home this early meant one thing; they were moving yet again.

    “Why can’t we stay put in one place for once!” Alexis grumbled to no one in particular. She stopped leaning on the railing that separated her from the ground two stories below, allowing the fat around her midsection that had gotten displaced to settle. She slid open the sliding door, dashed through the room to go confront her dad. He promised he would not move the family anymore.

    He better have a good excuse for this, Alexis thought as she tore down the hallway towards the stairs.


    Alexis went downstairs to find her dad, a thin man who was only a few inches taller than her, on the phone with one of his numerous business associates. Mr. Palmers was one the best marketing managers around. He has helped promote Devon Corp, Silph Corp as well as many other big time firms. In order to better oversee the advertising projects, Mr. Palmers often moved his family across the regions. This made it hard for Alexis to keep a constant circle of friends. Alexis stood right in front of the bottom of the steps to eavesdrop on the conversation. Maybe she was jumping to conclusions. For all she knew the office shut down early.

    “Yea Carlos we’re moving to Arcana. Their president offered me contract that is twice the amount I’m being paid here! He wants me to work on a new marketing scheme,” said Mr. Palmers while running his free hand through his shiny black hair. Alexis, still standing at the foot of the stairs, wanted to scream. Her assumption had been right: they were moving again.

    “You know about Arcana right? They’re the one that produces the top quality lumber and rock quarry for the Pokemon League. Apparently they want to expand their market for housing and what not. They must have heard of my skills!”

    Alexis rolled her eyes at her dad’s conversation. She knew by now that her dad never misses an opportunity to work for someone who will offer him a bigger paycheck. That still didn’t change the fact he promised that they weren’t moving again until Alexis was adult. Then at least when they moved, she could choose whether or not she wanted to come with them. With that promise officially broken, Alexis wanted her birthday to hurry up. Where was a Dialga or a Celebi when you needed one?

    “We’re moving within a few weeks. I trust you’ll finish the rest of the project for me. I know you can do it. Goodbye and good luck Carlos!” With that Mr. Palmers hung up and began to work on his laptop in the living room.

    Alexis was already upset that her dad broke his promise, but then it hit her. They were moving to Arcana which just happened to be a colonial region. A region with no wild Pokemon whatsoever. There were no official Contests, Pokeathlons, Musicals or Leagues. Those regions were only useful in exporting raw materials to regions like Kanto, Johto, Hoenn, Sinnoh and Unova.

    In other words, Alexis’ dream to go on a journey just got flushed down a toilet like a dead Magikarp. She couldn't take it anymore. She ran to the living room, the fluffy carpet muffling the sound of her footsteps. She stood over her dad, but he was too caught up in his work to notice.

    “Dad!” she yelled. Her dad peered up from his computer to see a fuming teenage girl. Both father and daughter had the same green eyes, although Alexis got her hair color from her mother.

    “What’s the matter sweetie?” her dad asked, eyes wide with concern.

    “We’re moving again? And to a colonial region at that?”

    “You heard my conversation on the phone didn’t you?”

    “No, I’m a psychic type Pokemon,” Alexis replied bitterly. She watched as her father’s eyebrows furrowed and his lips pursed into a frown. Her dad was never one for wisecracks or for eavesdropping. Normally she would quickly apologize, but not today.

    “Do you even care about my hopes and dreams? You promised that we wouldn’t move again!” Alexis blurted out after a tense few seconds of silence. Mr. Palmers eyes widened in utter disbelief before narrowing. A low growl rumbled in the depths of his throat.

    “Alexis Renee Palmers! How dare you imply that I don’t care about my own family? I’m trying to provide for you and your mom. We need this money,” he roared at his daughter who slightly flinched at his ferocity. However she stood her ground and didn’t retreat from his rage.

    “You promised we wouldn’t move again! How am I going to start my Pokemon journey in a freaking colonial region?” Alexis exclaimed, clenching her fists.

    “You and that damn dream of being a Pokemon trainer. How many times do I have to say that you aren’t fit to be a trainer?”

    “You always bring that up dad! Give me two good reasons as to why I can’t be a good trainer.”

    “Well for one, you scream and bawl like a baby whenever a thunderstorm hits,” her dad starts while gauging the reaction of his teenage daughter. Alexis tried unsuccessfully to fight down the blush creeping up on her pale cheeks.

    “Thunderstorms only pop up every once in a while,” Alexis said indignantly.

    “And you are out of shape like I don’t know what. How could you survive in the wilderness? You can’t even run a mile in 10 minutes,” her dad pressed on. “You need to lay off those Twinkies.”

    A jolt ran through Alexis’ heart. Slowly she looked down to her midsection where there was a little bulge. She knew she wasn’t the fittest girl in the world, and that she could stand to lose a few pounds. But she wasn’t even close to being dangerously overweight. Her thoughts went to a boy from her 10th grade class who was 90 pounds overweight and had diabetes. Yet he still got to go on a journey. Hot tears began to form as her father’s words replayed in her mind.

    “Alexis, you weren’t ready for Pokemon training when you were 10 and you aren’t ready now. I wish you’d stop chasing this pipe dream of yours,” Mr. Palmers said in a calmer, gentler tone. His daughter looked up at him with tears running down her cheeks. His heart sank seeing this yet the middle-aged man said nothing. A somber silence filled the room. Alexis had nothing more to say to her father.

    Suddenly, upstairs a loud moan could be heard breaking the silence. Both father and daughter winced at the sound. They both knew that Mrs. Palmers was in the throes of another intense headache. Mr. Palmers went upstairs to check on his wife while Alexis just stood in place, tears dripping onto the floor.


    It was mid-August when the Palmers family boarded the small, nearly empty jet to Arcana. Mr. Palmers was grinning with anticipation for what lay ahead of him in the colonial region. Mrs. Palmers tried to keep a smile on her face, though it was hard with the near-constant throbbing in her temples. She hoped that this job her husband was getting would help cover the costs needed for that surgery. It was an experimental procedure, but after two decades of the headaches, she was willing to try anything. Her long red hair tied up in a pony tail swayed slightly as she maneuvered her way through the aisle.

    And Alexis was positively ecstatic. Her constant scowl and furrowed eyebrows showed her happiness for moving for the umpteenth time. Red hair swished back and forth as the teenager marched to seat and plopped down with a “Humph”. The five other passengers looked at her strangely while her parents sighed at their daughter’s antics. Mr. Palmers wanted to reprimand her, but the small part of him that actually felt guilty about betraying his daughter decided to let her vent all she wanted to on the plane ride.

    The flight was long- about seven hours to be exact. Alexis spent most of the time gazing out the window, watching the puffy white clouds and the seemingly endless sparkling blue ocean. They passed over Unova and kept on heading west. Her dad, worked on his laptop as her mom took pills to try to ease her constant headache. The pain didn't respond to the medication so she stopped trying. Mrs. Palmers figured that a headache would be better than overdosing.

    Ding! “We are now approaching the western coast of Arcana,” said the flight attendant over the intercom.

    The first thing that Alexis noticed was that it was quite huge. The region was covered mostly with forests and two large mountain ranges. As the plane flew overhead, occasionally she saw small clearings with a few buildings close together. What she didn't know was the fact that they were settlements for the lumberjacks and miners who were too far away from the major human settlements which were confined to the east side of the region.

    I’m going to hate it here, she thought. There won’t be anything to do here. At least when I turn 18 in February I can get to do whatever I want. Although it won’t be much since I’ll be stuck in a place that has no gyms, or contests or Pokeathlons.

    Alexis felt a jolt as the wheels were coming out from underneath the planes. Slowly the plane descended towards the runway. The people aboard the flight winced as their ears popped from the change of altitude.

    In a few minutes their plane landed on the strip and began taxiing to the hanger. Alexis noticed that her dad’s Hummer was parked near where the plane was supposed to come to a complete stop. She figured her dad would want to get her mom to the new house as soon as possible. Glancing over to where her parents sat, she saw the pain written all over her mom’s face.

    “Don’t worry mom, you’ll be able to get back in bed and rest soon,” Alexis said quietly.


    The drive to the new house was about another 45 minutes. Apparently there was only one road from the airport to the city. Alexis faced the window, watching the scenery as it went by. It wasn’t much, just a bunch of trees and a few billboards every now and then. The only thing that was worth mentioning was that nearly every billboard advertised the same thing.

    “What the hell is Vitanergy?” She grumbled underneath her breath.

    One billboard had a Machop grinning and flexing it pecks at the passerby. Next to the blue humanoid was bold red text saying “Make your Pokemon stronger with Vitanergy!”

    Another had a blonde female with cheesy wink and grin. In her outstretched left hand was a little blue pill. The text on this billboard read “Vitanergy is just so awesome!”

    Alexis placed her hand over her mouth to stifle a laugh. She couldn’t believe how utterly cheesy, cliché, and stupid the advertisements were.

    No wonder they need my dad, these ads suck major ass, she thought. Although she was still thoroughly pissed off at her dad for breaking his promise, she could never deny her dad’s talent at being an advertising director.

    The Jeep slowly pulled up into the driveway of the Palmers’ new home. It was two-story brick building, with windows in gold-painted frames. A white picket fence surrounded the small front yard and slightly larger backyard. A small black mailbox with silver letters reading “Palmers” stood just in front of the sidewalk. Alexis looked around at the other houses in the cul-de-sac, and noticed they were all pretty similar in style.

    As soon as the ignition was cut off her dad jumped out of the car and ran to the other side to help her mom to the house. Meanwhile Alexis decided to take a trip to her new backyard. There wasn’t much there, just an oak tree and a porch. She noticed the grass had been recently cut. Alexis plopped down on the grass, not caring that she would most likely wind up with grass stains on her jeans. Slowly she reached into her pockets and pulled out three half-red, half-white spheres. These devices, known as Pokeballs, contained the only three Pokemon Alexis had. Each one her Pokemon came from a different region she had lived in, specifically Johto, Hoenn and Unova.

    “Well guys, welcome to our new home. For the umpteenth time,” Alexis said in a resigned tone. The only thing she could do was count the days until her eighteenth birthday.
    Last edited: Oct 25, 2011
  5. Rediamond

    Rediamond Middle of nowhere

    Hm... I'd forgotten about that name. It's been a while since the initial concept was posted I guess.

    As for the actual chapter, it was pretty good. It's hard to gauge much on a first chapter, and this one was rather short as well, but I didn't notice anything glaringly bad, and I'm not really good enough to look for anything deeper. As for good things, the first is that it's quite believable. The characters, from their limited dialogue and thoughts thus far, are believable, and even the entire advertising campaign thing (let's advertise our horribly illegal products!) is fairly believable.

    Overall, pretty good so far. Being believable when making a new region is fairly key. I'm looking forwards to seeing how Alexis' father justifies advertising drugs. Actually... he probably doesn't care come to think of it.
  6. Phoopes

    Phoopes There it is.

    Well, here's that promised review! First off, before I read, I noticed the concept. Very original, and I like that. (I'm imagining a Machamp on steroids... Wow.)

    I'll start off with the good. The prolouge is a very nice introduction into how the whole situation in Arcana came about. President Warburton seems like a very malicious man; I wouldn't want to have him running America, that's for sure. Timmy Smith is described as a timid person, but he sort of comes out of his shell a little bit. You did a good job making that believable. I don't know what to make of Dr. Cornell yet. She's obviously dedicated to her work if she's willing to put Pokemon on steroids to study the soil... I'll be interested to see where you take her character.

    Chapter 1 is also very good. It makes me ask a lot of questions. How will a family from a different region react to Pokemon on steroids? Will Alexis' dad let her go on a journey? Will something good finally happen to Alexis? What are Alexis' three Pokemon? You did a wonderful job describing without overdescribing.

    Now for the bad. It's nothing major, but when you have a quoted sentence that should end in a period, put a comma there. For example...

    "This is an example of what I'm talking about," explained phoopes.

    That's the only grammatical error that I find wrong with this story. It's a very interesting concept, and I will definitely keep reading.
  7. catzeye

    catzeye Writer's Block

    The advertisement campaign of horribly illegal products is just one of the many messed up things about Arcana.

    Mr. Palmers really doesn't care what he's advertising as long as he's getting paid top dollar. Please let me know if at any point the events in Arcana become too unbelievable.

    So did I when I thought of the concept. It wasn't a pretty sight. o_O

    President Warburton is very malicious. He's also quite arrogant since it's been 21 years since the project started and he has not gotten caught yet.

    I'm glad you think that I made Timmy Smith's whole come-out-of-his-shell-and-speak-his-mind thing believable. It took me awhile to figure out how to make him speak up for once in his life.

    Dr. Cornell is pretty much in love with her soil research. She's one of the few characters who hasn't been completely developed. I can't decide how I want her to end up.

    1. It will come as quite a shock that there are Pokemon on steroids. However what they'll do about it depends on the person...
    2. Alexis is about to turn 18 in a few months anyways so pretty soon her dad won't be able to stop her from doing what she wants.
    3. Alexis will have some nice things happen to her as well as some bad ones as well.
    4. Alexis' Pokemon will be revealed in the next chapter.

    Thanks for the grammar help. I'll be editing that right away. I'm glad people think it's an interesting concept so far.
  8. catzeye

    catzeye Writer's Block

    Well, here's chapter two. I have no idea when I'll be getting Chapter 3 up since I have such a heavy workload for my senior year.

    Chapter 2: Pandemonium

    Saturday, August 22, 2015

    Pale cream curtains did little to stop the harsh rays of the Arcanian sun from beaming down on a half-awake Alexis. Green eyes squinted as the young teenager grumbled before tumbling out of her queen-sized bed. It was her first Saturday in Arcana, and the last weekend before she started her senior year at the local high school.

    Alexis’ dad had already left a couple of hours ago. His new bosses gave him some time to settle in but they wanted him to start work on the advertisement project as soon as possible, even if it meant working on a weekend. With her dad being such a workaholic, Alexis wasn’t surprised that he jumped at the prospect of working on the new campaign so soon. However the last thing that was on her mind was her dad’s work tendencies.

    No, it was being the new girl at the school yet again. It was very tedious process: introducing yourself to new faces, finding your way around the grounds, and trying to make acquaintances to keep from being lonely. As of now Alexis had been moved to seven different schools. She remembered the sixth time, moving back to her birth region of Johto that her dad had sworn this would be the last time they would move.

    “What a lie,” Alexis hissed to herself. With that, the red-head marched downstairs to be greeted by the smell of hash browns and sausage. At first she assumed that the new maid was cooking, so she was presently surprised to see her own mother doing the cooking.

    “Hello dear,” Mrs. Palmers said with a bright smile on her face. Her red hair which was much longer than her daughter’s, was tied back into a low ponytail. No female in the family was skinny, and Mrs. Palmers was no exception, although she had lost some weight from being bedridden. Alexis noticed that her Pokemon were already eating their breakfast. Her hair swayed side to side as she moved from the stove to place the hash browns and sausage on the dining table.

    “Come eat Alexis,” she beckoned. A large grin spread across her daughter’s face as she bounded for the table. Since the cluster headaches her mom experienced usually kept her from doing a lot of things, it had been quite some time since Alexis had gotten to eat her mom’s cooking. Alexis wasted no time in chowing down the food in front of her, savoring every bite.

    The two sat and talked about all kinds of things. It was a lot different from when Alexis and her dad ate together. Mr. Palmers was usually on his phone with one of his clients at the table. If not conversing with a client, he was busy on his tablet jotting down new ideas. Anytime she tried to strike up a conversation she would only be met with “Yeah, uh-huh”.

    “It’s such a nice day out, I think I’m going to head downtown,” Alexis’ mom said happily, “I heard they have some nice boutiques in the region.”

    Alexis found her mom’s cheer to be infectious. She always wondered how someone with such an annoying illness could still find room to look at the bright side of things. It was this inner strength that made Alexis proud to call Julia Palmers her mom.

    “Alexis what do you plan to do today?” her mom asked, breaking her out of her trance.

    “Oh um…just sleep in, like I’ve been doing ever since we arrived.”

    “Come on honey, you need to do something.”

    “What is there to do mom? This place has nothing. Nothing at all!” Alexis said while throwing her hands up in the air.

    “Well I heard on the news this morning that the local high school is having its annual Pokemon race,” her mom pointed out. Alexis’ eyes widened in surprise, for Pokemon races were rare nowadays. These events required the trainer to actually ride their Pokemon on a set course. Competitors tended to get pretty fierce in these races, causing numerous injuries or deaths over the years. Pokemon races were very popular until the Pokeathlons came around, offering many more events or trainers and Pokemon to compete in.

    Alexis began to grin as she realized she now had a chance to get some desperately needed exercise for at least one of her Pokemon. The only thing she had to decide was which one to enter with.

    Her gaze fell on to her first Pokemon, Torchic. It was a small orange baby chicken Pokemon with 3 yellow tufts of feathers sticking out on top of her head. Alexis was in Hoenn when she received her, and had thought that her dad was going to let her go on a journey. Unfortunately her dad said that she only received the Pokemon to keep her company. The Pokemon was far too small to carry anybody.

    She then looked to her Whimsicott who was trying to catch dust particles. It was a small brown colored sheep-like creature with a large tuff of cotton blooming from his back. Her dad received it as a gift in the Unova region as a Cottonee, but he quickly passed it on to her. One Sunstone later, and it evolved. The hyperactive Pokemon was her strongest at the moment. However, even if Whimsicott was big enough to carry Alexis through a race, he didn’t have a big enough attention span to concentrate. His trainer swore that he had some undiagnosed form of ADHD.

    That left Alexis’ Girafarig as the only viable option. Quite frankly, she should have just went straight to that Pokemon in the first place. The yellow and brown giraffe was currently staring at the china cabinet. Alexis knew her newest addition to the team would be dependable, although she was slight apprehensive about one thing. On the end of her tail was yet another head that tended to like to bite random things. Alexis could only hope that it wouldn’t bite her.

    “So are you going to compete?” her mom asked, breaking her daughter’s train of thought. Alexis looked up and simply nodded for an answer. With that she raced upstairs to change out of her pajamas.


    “Ugh,” Alexis moaned as she struggles to get into her jeans. She sucked in her stomach and jumped up and down to pull the pants up her body. Slowly they slid up her thighs before finally resting on her waist. A deep sigh was let out after all that hard work. Standing in front of her vanity, Alexis surveyed her outfit. It was nothing special, just a light purple blouse and dark blue jeans. Patting her stomach, she made a mental note to ask her mom if she can go get her some new pants.


    Alexis and her mom took the bus into the heart of Rhannu City. Both mother and daughter marveled at the impressive architecture, from the towering skyscrapers, to the smaller buildings shaped like domes and pyramids. Alexis’ mom got off first near the shopping district, promising to pick up some clothes for her daughter as well. After a three more stops, Alexis noticed that the only ones left on the bus were kids around her age. It didn’t take genius to figure out where they all were headed.

    “We have arrived at Rhannu City Park,” an electronic voice called over the telecom. Alexis and the other teenagers quickly filed off the bus. Alexis stopped for a minute to take a good look at the park. It was quite big, filled with large trees with a large pond in the middle of it all.

    She then made her way to the registration table. There was a small line ahead of her, so she spent her time looking at the other competitors. The first thing she noticed was that a lot of the Pokemon were larger than usual for their species. In some of them she could even see extra muscle rippling beneath their skin. Alexis wondered if the extra muscle was due to that blue Vitanergy pill. She then focused her attention on the type of Pokemon people had. There were quite a few people with Zebstrika and Rapidash, which wasn’t a surprise. They were always top choices in Pokemon races. Her gaze fell onto a boy with an Electrode. The red and white sphere Pokemon was certainly an odd choice for riding. As she was surveying the competition, she noticed that a lot of the trainers were giving their Pokemon a pill to consume. They looked exactly like the blue Vitanergy pills she saw in the billboards, only they were red.

    "Are there two Vitanergy pills?" Alexis said quietly to herself.

    “Next” a high-pitched nasally voice rang out. Alexis looked up to see she was the next one in line. She approached the desk to be greeted by a woman who looked to be in her fifties. The woman in question had a large amount blond hair and bright blue eyes. What astounded Alexis the most though, were the large earrings the woman was wearing. They were made of platinum and had diamonds and pearls embedded into them.

    “Ahem, can I help you” the woman said, snapping the red-headed teenager out of her gawking. Alexis asked for the sign-up sheet which the woman gave her. She quickly wrote down her name and Girafarig’s name and left the table.


    “Will all racers line up at the starting line please,” the woman from the table called out with a megaphone. Slowly all the competitors made their way to the white line drawn on the ground. One by one they began to mount their Pokemon.

    Girafarig knelt down onto her forelegs in order to give Alexis an easier way to get on her back. However the giraffe Pokemon wasn’t used to carrying people so when Alexis jumped on, Girafarig buckled a bit under her weight. The Pokemon gave a strangled whine as she tried to push herself back onto all fours. When Girafarig finally managed to stand up straight, the head on her tail whipped around to bite Alexis in her rear end causing her to yelp.

    When all the competitors were ready, the woman began the countdown.

    “On your mark, get set, GO!” she shouted. It seemed as soon as she said the “g” in go, some of the racers had already launched themselves across the starting line. They tore down the path with tremendous speed and power. They were together in tight bunch causing a lot of pushing and shoving. It was only a minute into the race when twelve people were already knocked off their Pokemon.

    Alexis and the rest of the competitors on the other hand, were far behind the carnage that was up ahead. The pace behind the leaders was much more relaxed, and for that Alexis was grateful. She shouted words of encouragement to her Girafarig as she bounded down the path that snaked its way through the heart of the park. There was a cry of “Ouch!” behind her from the guy riding the Electrode. He had fallen off yet again. They passed the banks of the pond, with the bright blue water sparkling from the light of the noon sun. The racing trail then went into a tunnel made by the branches of tall oak and pine trees. Despite the fact that Alexis was nowhere near the lead, she was still enjoying herself. It was a rare occasion that she actually got to participate in something Pokemon-related.

    As they ran through the trees, one of the racers from the leading pack had run past them on her Tauros. The girl looked a bit unsettled as did her brown bull Pokemon.

    “Why is she running backwards?” Alexis wondered to herself. Then another racer on a Rapidash ran past as well. The billowing flames from the mane nearly hit Girafarig in the face. Alexis and the other racers still kept on running forward, although a sense of worry filled each and every one of them. The third racer on an Arcanine from the lead pack came barreling down the path, only to stop and block the rest of them from going any further.

    Alexis marveled at the tall orange and black striped canine with cream colored fur on the top of its head. Her gaze then went to the person who was riding the Arcanine. It was a male with messy brown hair and grey eyes. She noticed a tattoo of a cross on the base of his neck and the beginnings of a goatee on his chin.

    “Everyone needs to turn back now!” he yelled “An Ursaring is on rampage!”

    Just at that moment, a loud deep roar reverberated across the area. This was followed by horrified screams of both humans and Pokemon. A lot of the racers decided to heed the boy on the Arcanine’s advice and turned back. Alexis and her Girafarig however, were frozen on the spot. The screams and roaring continued coupled with the sounds of Pokemon crashing into a tree.

    “Run before you get killed!” the boy on the Arcanine repeated with even more urgency than before. The word “killed” managed to spur Girafarig into moving. Unfortunately she was moving towards the sounds of the rampaging Ursaring. Alexis tried to steer the giraffe Pokemon into the right direction, however Girafarig was too afraid to obey the orders. Alexis and Girafarig flew past the guy on his Arcanine. The guy on the Arcanine was confused to say the least.

    “Did she just run towards the rampaging Ursaring?” he asked his Arcanine. The orange and black striped canine muttered a confused whine in response. The boy debated for a few seconds whether or not to go after the red headed girl. He really wanted to just get away from the scene. However, he knew his conscious would never let him live it down if he didn't go after the girl.

    “Let’s go get that girl Arcanine,” he said. A sharp howl rang out as the Arcanine bounded after the Alexis.


    “Girafarig! You’re going the wrong way! Stop!” Alexis screamed to her frightened Pokemon. The giraffe Pokemon did not comply with her trainer’s command. Acting on pure survival instincts, it kept running, past the other competitors who were trying to get away from the scene. It only stopped when it reached a terrifying sight.

    There it was, a large brown bear standing in the middle of the path. The muscles in its arms were bulging to the point that one could see the veins. Ursaring’s eyes were bloodshot and drool was seeping between its canines. It let out a savage roar. Alexis’ gaze fell on to the two girls and their Pokemon who were just feet away from the crazed Pokemon. One was crying and trying to wake up her Zebstrika. Alexis noticed that the black and white zebra had a huge gash on its neck where blood was seeping from. The other girl had her back up against a tree with her battered Zangoose standing in front of her protectively. The Ursaring’s trainer was nowhere in sight.

    “Zangoose, use Focus Blast!” the girl cried out. A white orb slowly began to form between the mongoose Pokemon’s red tipped paws. Zangoose pushed its arms out to release the glowing mass of raw power. The orb struck Ursaring with tremendous force knocking it back a few feet. Although the Fighting-type move are super effective on a Normal-type like Ursaring, the brown bear Pokemon refused to go down. An orange orb began to form rapidly between the heavy jaws of Ursaring. Alexis gulped as she knew exactly which attack was going to be used next.

    “Hyper Beam,” she said in a horrified tone. The Normal-type move was one of the most feared moves in all of Pokemon battling.

    The orange orb suddenly became a bright orange beam as it tore out of Ursaring’s mouth with blinding speed. The beam hit Zangoose square in the chest and pushed it back into the same tree its trainer was standing up against. The poor girl had no chance to get out of the way. The back of her skull smacked the thick trunk of the tree with a thud. The girl slipped unconscious immediately. Zangoose tried to keep going but ultimately fainted just like its trainer. The Ursaring then turned its attention back towards the girl with the Zebstrika. Even though it hadn't properly recharged itself from the Hyper Beam, the brown bear Pokemon raised its right arm to prepare to strike the girl with a Slash attack…

    “W-what is going on?” Alexis said. She had seen league battles on TV that had gotten pretty intense. Sometimes blood would be drawn or there would be a few shattered ribs. But what she was viewing right then seemed like nothing more but complete savagery.

    “Hey, you! Girl on the Girafarig!” the guy on the Arcanine called out as he reached the scene. It caught the attention of both Alexis and the Ursaring. Another Hyper Beam was quickly formed and launched. The beam was heading straight for the Arcanine and his trainer. Fortunately, the Arcanine used Extreme Speed to dodge the powerful attack. Ursaring growled fiercely at its missed move but then it suddenly doubled over in pain. It began to gasp for breath and beads of swept formed on the Ursaring’s brow.

    It was having a heart attack.

    The Ursaring collapsed to the ground as its heart continued to not function properly. Within a minute the brown bear Pokemon went limp once its heart ceased to beat. Alexis stared at the dead Pokemon with wide eyes. What just happened was definitely not natural.

    “There goes another one,” the guy on the Arcanine said inaudibly. He turned to Alexis, grey eyes locking onto green eyes.

    “Are you ok?” he asked Alexis.


    “The name is Marco Reyes. But just call me Marco.” he said with large grin.

    “Nice to meet you Marco, I’m Alexis Palmers. Just call me Alexis,” Alexis replied with a courteous smile.

    “Alexis, I’d love to stay and chat but I think I should go check on those girls over there,” Marco said while jerking his thumb to where the Zebstrika and Zangoose trainer were.

    Marco hopped off his Arcanine and checked on the girl who owned the Zangoose who was just beginning to regain consciousness.


    “And then the Ursaring just dropped dead!” Alexis exclaimed as she explained to her mom the events that happened that day. Her mom’s brown eyes widened as she dropped her fork onto the dinner plate. The thought of her only child being that close to such pandemonium wasn’t exactly pleasant.

    “Oh dear, I’m glad that you are ok. It sounds like that other than the Ursaring incident, everything else went alright,” her mom said after her nerves settled down a bit. Mrs. Palmers was trying to look on the bright side of things, but she seriously regretted telling Alexis to go participate in the race. Everything her daughter just told her swam through her mind and gave her the beginnings of a headache.

    “Mom, are you ok?” Alexis asked as she watched her mother wince slightly. Mrs. Palmers looked up and gave her daughter a smile to ease her worrying.

    “Honey, what do you think about Alexis’ day?” Alexis’ mom said in an attempt to bring her husband into the dinner conversation.

    “Yeah Uh-huh,” he replied while not taking his eyes off his tablet. Alexis rolled her eyes at her dad’s usual inattentiveness at the situation at hand. Her mom however, was having none of it.

    “Uriah!" she said in a much firmer tone that got his attention.


    “Did you even pay attention to the events of your child’s day?”

    “Julia, I’m trying to work here. I’m sure Alexis had a nice day,” Mr. Palmers said angrily. Husband and wife began to bicker over Mr. Palmer’s lack of attention. Alexis, not wanting to hear the argument excused herself from the table and went into the living room to watch TV. Her Pokemon were scattered around the living room just relaxing.

    Pressing the power button, Alexis watched as the screen flickered to life on the hi-definition flat screen. It was already set to a channel that was broadcasting to the news. A young anchorwoman with hair pulled back in a ponytail was currently speaking.

    “In other news,” the anchorwoman said “The annual Rhannu City High Pokemon Race was cut short after an Ursaring went on a rampage killing one other Pokemon before itself succumbing to a heart attack. Its trainer is currently in intensive care. No word on what actually caused the rampage.”

    Right after that the news cut to a commercial. Alexis stared at the TV with a dumbfounded expression.

    “That’s it? A Pokemon goes berserk and they only give it thirty seconds on the news?” Alexis cried out. Back in the other regions she had lived in, if a Pokemon ever did what the Ursaring that day it would be the top story for at least two days. The fact that this incident only got a few seconds of mention made Alexis wonder if this was a common occurrence in Arcana. She hoped it wasn't.

    After a commercial for shoes, an ad for Vitanergy appeared on the screen. It showed many clips of different Pokemon who were a lot larger than normal for their respective species. Some of them were just showing off their physiques while others showed off their impressive tasks. Nearing the end, a smooth male voice could be heard.

    “Give your Pokemon the chance at the strength they rightfully deserve. Use Vitanergy,” the man said as the blue pill that Alexis saw when she first arrived in the region flashed onto the screen. Then the red pill she saw competitors at the race give their Pokemon appeared.

    “And for a quick burst of energy use Vitanergy QuickShot,” the man said before the commercial ended.

    So I was right. There are two pills, Alexis thought. Feeling curious about the pills she decided that she would do some investigation on them when she started school in two days. She quietly wondered if she would meet that Marco guy again. Maybe he could tell her more.


    Author's Note: There are two Vitanergy Pills, each with completely different effects on the Pokemon. More will be explained in the third chapter when Alexis gets to the high school.
    Last edited: Oct 25, 2011
  9. katiekitten

    katiekitten The Compromise

    Hey~! (This is the response review, but I think I would've read this anyway :3)

    I really enjoyed this!

    Your plot is delightfully original - the drugs are a fresh idea, as are the implied politics surrounding their legislation, and it's really caught my attention. The scene race scene and the Ursaring one were spot on in that respect, particularly the former. I quite liked your depiction of the side effects of the drug as well, the Ursaring's reaction and the image of the havoc it reaped were well done. You worked the description well there, I could really picture it. :3 I'm very curious to see how the drug managed to progress from the scientists' conception to its common use, as well as how the drug company managed to pass it off as the vitamin and whether it will expand its markets into the other countries. x3 A nice little bit of suspense there.

    The variety of ways you can imagine a man clinging to an electrode as well made me giggle. x3 Great touch there, I kept on seeing him initially attempting a more composed crosslegged position, falling off a dozen times and finally settling for just clinging on to its eyebrows. xD <3

    On improvements plot wise, I can't really say anything. :3 Just be careful not to press the drug angle too much - but that's just a general warning, and it is a core element of your plot from what I can see. I'm really curious to see how Alexis fits in to the general scheme of things. Very nice. x3

    I felt your characterisation in particular was very good. I quite like what I'm seeing of Alexis' mother so far - the family dynamic seems to be a fun one, and I'm looking forward to seeing how they all work it through. x3 I'm always a fan of a little facial hair, so Marco seems set to please. ;D Haha - Alexis is shaping up to be a good main character as well, from what I've seen. :3 Good job. We could perhaps see a little bit more of her reaction to the Ursaring's heart attack in her conversation with Marco, but only a little. You've kept a good thread of her thought throughout all of the rest, which was brilliant, it's just the conversation that seems a bit bare of anything but speech - you could fill it out a bit more with a bit more detail on both, to both give Marco a little more development as well as Alexis, but that is a minor thing. :3

    Only one thing more is that it'd probably be better to split up the speech into double rather than single spaced paragraphs between speakers even if they aren't followed by anything else. It looks a little out of place otherwise.

    That's about it! Add me to the PM list, m'dear? ;3
  10. catzeye

    catzeye Writer's Block

    There will be a chapter that explains how the drug usage grew, because originally it was just for the miners and lumberjacks. And now a good portion of the population of Arcana uses it.

    I try to add a little humor here and there to keep this story from being ultra-serious.

    Well since all of the main characters are between the ages of 17 to 22, I can assure you that there will be more to the story than just the drugs.

    I'm glad to see that you like my characters so far. I'll work on the dialogue for the upcoming chapters and I'll probably edit some of the existing dialogue while I'm at it.

    Okay. I'll be sure to edit that.

    I will! Thanks so much for the review. =D
  11. Ejunknown

    Ejunknown be creative

    8'D First off, I'm loving your characterisation, and the images of your characters. >u< You have substance in your writing style, you don't know how much of a relief it is for me to see that recently here, and that immediately knocks you up a few notches in my good book. >u<

    One thing I saw:

    When describing the effects of your characters actions, feel free to use your imagination, and go beyond just 'causing' - create an image with your description. I can easily see that being 'sending the coffee mug rattling against his desk', or 'sending the small mug skidding across the already well-dented wood', anything. >u<

    'thought', and I'd also say 'himself', but that other works..?

    Another free-your-description-note:

    'the occasional mutter spitting from his lips furiously', ect.! x'D Personify it, use a metaphor, toss whatever in. <3

    'It was incompetent people'.

    'as pale as if he had seen Giratina.'

    'Snapped a small, feminine figure at the head of the crowd, her wavy brown hair bustling round the even olive tone of her face' - toss it up! <3

    x'D I love how Dr. Cornell asserts herself in the next scene - but as a studying scientist myself, as amusing as the image is, we are more likely to sit down and write a long, heated email to the researchers at other organisations to collaborate on proving there is no way they can reach that mans outrageous demands. x'D

    I love the images you created of the effect and recognition of the use of steroids in the Pokemon verse though. The serious acknowledgment and look at the repercussions of the idea is interesting, and I appreciate the insight. x'D I also love the glance into politics, and the region colonial nature - I'm looking forward to seeing more of that. >u<

    I'm exhausted, so I'll leave this here with the prologue, but an amusing beginning. x'D
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2011
  12. catzeye

    catzeye Writer's Block

    Thanks! I'm glad to hear I'm doing a few things right. =D

    I'll be sure to work on making some imagery. I'm still trying to find the right balance so I'm not over describing or not describing enough.

    Long heated emails you say? You just gave me an idea for an upcoming scene. Thanks!

    When I was coming up with the idea for this story I thought "Well Pokemon are like athletes, and athletes in our world get caught using steroids. So why not have steroids for Pokemon."

    Arcana's colonial status plays a huge role in the events of story. Let's just say none of what happens in the rest of the story would occur in regions like Kanto.

    Thanks for the review! Glad to see that you like what you read so far! =D
  13. Rediamond

    Rediamond Middle of nowhere

    Well, I did say it would get done. And here it is. Comments go through the chapter in order as to what they're responding to.
    -Why does Alexis even bother listening to her father's promises anymore? I would have stopped valuing them at anything a long time ago. That, and why does her dad even bother making promises he knows he won't keep in the first place?
    -heh. I know quite a few people who would consider dinner conversations such as the ones Alexis has with her father overly social.
    -WAIT. Just sleeping in, is doing something. Mrs. Palmers has this all wrong... that or my life has been a pointless lie...
    -Comments on three Pokemon:
    -Torchic: A sort of overused starter Pokemon, but whatever. It makes a fair amount of sense as to why she has it and it can get banned by a psychotic group of Pokemon League Regulators when he grows up.
    -Whimsicott: Aw, I love these things. So much potential for strategy in battles that it has a lot of potential in any fic.
    -Girafirig: This is probably the first time I've seen a Girafirig in a fic owned by the main character. This could be really interesting, ecspecially given his rather, uh, unintelligent behavior for a psychic type he's been showing.
    -Error during dressing scene: she struggle to get into (should be struggles/d)
    -Error at start of race: middle age woman (middle aged?)
    -Got a good laugh out of the Electrode thing. Speed =/= racing ability, but I could see someone trying it regardless. And Rapidash as a popular racing Pokemon? If you sit on that thing, you WILL get burned. Just saying.
    -I don't really care if they're high BP attacks... my RMT rater side is going insane when a battle between a Zangoose and Ursaring involves exclusively special attacks. Of course, this is a fan fic so it doesn't matter.
    -Error during heart attack: Within in a minute
    -"No idea on the cause"... government/media cover-up much?

    Another good chapter. Sorry if the review is less than coherent, but it's too early to latch onto any major constructive criticism to give the review a central purpose.
  14. catzeye

    catzeye Writer's Block

    Alexis tends to trust people to keep their word. Her dad has kept some of his promises, just not ones involving moving around. But you are right, by now she should be more wary about her dad's promises.

    I can relate.

    Well Mrs. Palmers loves to be active whenever she gets the chance. Her cluster headaches cause her to not be able to do a lot of stuff so she seizes every chance she gets to do something. And sleeping in is not doing something in her book. So she doesn't understand people like you and I who enjoy sleeping in. =P

    When I first thought of Alexis, I immediately pictured her with a Torchic for some reason. I thought Whimsicott is adorable and could have some uses in this particular fic. Girafarig was the oddball of Alexis' team but I thought it would be nice to give Pokemon who don't usually get spotlight in a fanfiction a chance to shine.

    Thanks for pointing that out. I'll be sure to fix them.

    True you would get burned by the flaming mane but I decided to take a page from the anime. Back in the original season when they had that Pokemon race and Ash used some lady's Rapidash to enter the race.

    Well let's just say a lot of the Arcanan trainers will make your RMT rater side go insane. They love Hyper Beam, Fire Blast, Hydro Cannon etc. They also don't care if they are giving special attacks to primarily physical sweepers.


    Thanks so much for the review!
  15. catzeye

    catzeye Writer's Block

    Well here is the third chapter. This will be the first of a quite a few chapters that is set in the high school. I had a little bit of writers block concerning this chapter.

    Chapter 3: A New Start

    Monday, August 24, 2015

    Beep-beep-beep! Beep-beep-beep! Beep-beep-beep!

    “It’s too early,” moaned Alexis. Monday morning came far too quickly for her. Then again it was always like that on the first day of school.

    At least it’s my last year, she thought as she slammed her hand forcefully down onto her alarm clock. The little black time-keeping device jumped a bit as it ceased its incessant beeping. The neon green numbers stopped flashing on and off the digital screen. Alexis crawled out of her queen sized bed not bothering to straighten out the lavender bed sheets. She made her way to her vanity and stared at her early-morning reflection. She met the tired gaze of a five foot, four inches tall female with red hair flying in every direction.

    “Good morning!” she said to the reflection while giving it a cheesy salute. She then quickly grabbed her wooden brush to straighten out the mess that was her hair.

    A few minutes later she exited her room to go downstairs for breakfast. On her way there she decided to stop by her parents’ room. Her dad would already be downstairs most likely but Alexis wanted to see if her mom wasn’t in the midst of another round of cluster headaches. She reached the tall oak door that led to the master bedroom. Carefully, she turned the brass knob and opened the door ever so slightly. Alexis popped her little round head in, green eyes resting on the form of her mother.

    Strands of long red hair laid haphazardly on the white pillows and light blue covers. Light eyelids covered the stunning brown eyes the forty-two year old woman had. Mrs. Palmers’ forehead creased as a wave of pain shot through her skull. A slight moan escaped her lips as she quickly tossed herself so her back was facing her daughter. Alexis jerked her head out of the room and
    close the door gently. Her pale fingers rested on the brass doorknob as she hung her head low.

    “I seriously hate seeing mom like this,” she said quietly to herself.


    “Good morning, Lady Alexis” called a calm, respectful voice to the teenager walking down the stairs. The voice in question belonged to a young woman around the same height as Alexis. She had long wavy rose colored hair and light brown eyes.

    “Good morning, Peyton” Alexis responded to the maid. Alexis took the time to smell the sweet fragrance of blueberry pancakes and French toast that filled the room. The sweet smell of the food was mingled with the strong robust smell of freshly brewed coffee. Immediately she went to the table only to be completely taken aback by what she saw.

    Her dad was sitting at the table. That was normal. It was what he was doing- or not doing that surprised the girl. He wasn’t on his tablet working on projects or using his Bluetooth to chat with an associate. Nope, Mr. Palmers was just sitting there at the table drinking his black coffee not working at all. This was a scene that the girl hadn’t seen since- well to be honest she had never seen that in all her seventeen years of life. Alexis’ jaw hung like its hinges were loose. The man at the table looked up to see his daughter’s dumbfounded expression.

    “Top of the morning, sweetie! How’s life treating you?” he said with a large grin.



    “Y-you! You’re not! No Bluetoo-! No tab-! Eh? What is this I don’t even,” Alexis sputtered. Both her dad and the maid looked on in slight worry as the teenager kept on garbling her words. After about a minute of the nonsensical blabbering the two adults decided to speak up.


    “Lady Alexis?”

    “YOU’RE NOT DOING ANY WORK!?!?” Alexis finally managed to spit out. The way she screamed it made in unclear whether she was asking a question or just exclaiming. Her yelling alerted her Pokemon in the other room so they came running to check on their trainer. Mr. Palmers rubbed the back of his neck while he chuckled in embarrassment.

    “About that, see your mom asked me to lay off on the whole working-while-eating-at-the-table-shtick,” he said while picking apart a piece of French toast, “She wants me to have more father-daughter time with you”

    “And you gave in to her demands?” Alexis asked incredulously. All the other times her mom asked him to do such a thing she was met with strong defiance. Mr. Palmers gave another sheepish chuckle.

    “Well that, and the fact that she hid my stuff somewhere I can’t find them” he added. Alexis failed to contain the wide grin that appeared on her face. She didn’t know her mom had such a devious streak in her. Alexis proceeded to sit down to eat with her father and have a proper conversation with him for once.

    “So are you ready for school?” Mr. Palmers asked in an attempt to connect with his daughter. He was used to talking to businessmen and women in board meetings. But talking to his seventeen year old child? That was a whole different ballgame. He never really stuck his nose in his daughter’s life except during report card season. For a second, Mr. Palmers actually regretted not spending more time with Alexis. But he quickly shook it out of his head, all the work he was doing would benefit his only child in the future.

    “I guess. At least it’s my senior year,” his daughter said with a shrug. Mr. Palmers found it odd that she wasn’t jumping around excitedly at the start of a new school year like he used to do. It didn’t occur to him that the last time Alexis thought school was cool, was when they had recess and naptime.

    “Yeah, it’s your senior year honey! You should show more enthusiasm!”

    “Well, I think I’ll be a bit more excited come second semester, when it’s getting down to the wire,” Alexis replied with a small smile. The rest of the breakfast was eaten in a somewhat awkward silence.


    Emerald blades of grass rocked back and forth in the morning breeze like the hands of adoring fans at a rock concert. Alexis stood on the corner of her street, waiting quietly for the school bus to arrive and take her to the high school. In the minutes she waited, her mind drifted in an ocean of thoughts.

    The red-head’s mind went straight to the events that occurred that Saturday. The scene she witnessed had play multiple times in her head over the past few days. The Ursaring’s bloodshot eyes and the thick drool seeping between sharp teeth. The savage roar would be forever engrained in the teenager’s mind. A shudder raced down her spine as images of fresh blood gliding down the neck of the Zebstrika played in her brain’s movie theater. She had told that boy Marco she was ok after the bear had succumbed to the heart attack, but in reality she was pretty shaken. That’s not something you just shake off immediately.

    Honk! Honk!

    The loud horn jolted Alexis out of the world of her memories. Green eyes peered up to see a long yellow vehicle before her. Glass doors rimmed in black rubber swung open. In the driver’s seat was a balding man with a rainbow tie-dye shirt and striped shorts. Alexis raised an eyebrow at the man’s fashion sense before stepping on to the bus. Once fully on the bus, she spotted an open window seat towards the middle of the rectangular vehicle.

    The space between the two rows of seats was quite small. Alexis’ hips didn’t help the situation as she pushed her way toward her target seat, muttering “Sorry” to anybody she may have brushed up against. Most of the kids accepted her apology with a curt nod, but one young boy didn’t.

    “Watch out for the big girl!” he shouted with a snide grin. The comedian managed to earn a few snickers from those around him. Blood rushed to the pale cheeks of Alexis’ face after the quip. She was used to a comment here and there about her weight but it didn’t mean that the words weren’t hurtful. Alexis quickly sat down in her seat, still blushing from the embarrassment. The bus started up again as soon as she was settled.

    As the bus drove down the road to its next stop, Alexis’ mind drifted yet again to the fateful Saturday. However she didn’t go back to the Ursaring’s rampage. Instead she went back to the time before the chaos began. When it was just her and her Girafarig racing down the race path. She remembered the wind whipping at her face and the joyful grunts her Pokemon made. Alexis remembered the “Ha!” moments whenever she managed to past another competitor and the “No!” moments whenever someone moved ahead of her. The sheer exhilaration of competition was just so…

    “Alexis. Hola, Alexis. HEY ALEXIS!” a familiar voice called out. Alexis jumped slightly and shook her head. Turning to her let she saw none other than Marco sitting next to her.

    I didn’t even realize the bus even stopped, she thought quietly. She wondered how long he had been sitting.

    “What were you doing just now, daydreaming?” Marco asked with a lopsided grin. Alexis smiled and replied that she was simply thinking. Marco threw his head back and roared with laughter.

    “What’s so funny, Marco?” Alexis asked, her left eyebrow arching upwards in confusion.

    “You should’ve seen how you looked when you were thinking. You were really spaced out,” Marco said while patting Alexis on her back. Alexis rolled her eyes, turned to face the window and sighed. She slid her hand through her red hair before turning to Marco who was now slouching in the bus seat, staring at the blue leather covering the seat in front of him. There was a bit of silence as the bus trudged down the road towards its final destination.

    “I’m actually really excited for this year” Marco said, not taking his eyes off the seat. “It’s my senior year. Class of 2016!”

    “Cool! I’m a senior too!” Alexis exclaimed excitedly. Marco turned to her with a quizzical look.

    “Really? I know every one of the 107 people in the senior class and…I just met you this weekend,” he said slowly. The Arcana Class of 2016 was smaller than most, and therefore the entire class knew each other like the backs of their hands.

    “Well I did just move from Johto. So now we have 108 seniors,” Alexis replied with a slightly smug look on her face.

    “Oh cool, so you’re from Joht-OWW!” Marco screamed as his head was slammed into the back of the seat in front of him. The bus driver had slammed his foot onto the brake pedal hard enough to lift the back of the bus off the ground 2 feet. When the back of the yellow automobile fell back to the earth, both Marco and Alexis were thrown backwards into the seat. Moans and groans could be heard from everyone on the bus. Those in the back shouted curses towards the driver.

    “We must be here,” Marco muttered while rubbing his forehead. He glanced over to see if Alexis was alright. Her right cheek was red from the impact.

    “Well that hurt,” Alexis stated simply. She turned towards the window to see what her new school looked like. The results were…underwhelming. Especially when compared to the rest of the architecture in the city.

    The school itself looked like it was carved out of concrete; simple, rectangular and grey. Pieces of wood painted white rimmed the square windows. It was a one story building that from the air looked like a mass of Tetris blocks. The landscaping of the campus grounds was better, but not by much. Cobblestone paths cut their way between patches of freshly cut emerald blades of grass. Crabapple trees dotted the grounds, their pear-shaped fruits still ripening. The most colorful things about the campus were the students. Everyone was decked out in the best picks of their back-to-school clothes.

    “Are you ready to get off the bus?” Marco asked slightly impatiently. Alexis broke her gaze from the window to look around the bus and realized that they were the only two people left. Even the bus driver was gone. Alexis chuckled slightly and hurried to get out the seat and off the bus.

    Alexis and Marco left the quiet emptiness of the bus to be confronted with the loud milling hoards that were their schoolmates. They could see nervous freshman looking around trying to find someone they knew. They could hear the shrill screams of girls who found their best girl friends as they ran to embrace them. In the various patches of grass kids squared off to have back to school Pokemon Battles. This was a common tradition in all schools across the globe, and the teachers patrolling the grounds let them do as they please. Alexis noticed that nearly all of the Pokemon who battled had the same bulked up appearance as many of the racers, including the Ursaring had.

    Not really interested in gawking at the battles, Alexis and Marco made their way up the largest cobblestone path towards the plain grey building that was the school. Alexis pulled her schedule out of the pocket of her blue jeans and asked Marco where the Pre-Calculus class was.

    “Lucky you, if you keep going straight once we enter the school, you’ll see the math hall,” he said, pouting slightly and folding his arms. His class was down on the fine arts hallway, which was closer to the back end of the school. The first of the three morning bells rang out through the school grounds. Most of the students continued to stand around in schoolyard preferring to wait until the second bell to head for the building. Alexis and Marco however, decided to head on inside with a few other students.

    Upon entering the school Alexis was taken aback by the lobby. While the school’s exterior left much to be desired the interior was quite marvelous. The walls were painted a lovely shade of royal blue with various inspirational quotes scribed in silver paint. There were many fabulous photographs and drawings that lined the halls. There was a trophy case near the office filled to the brim with plaques, trophies, medals and certificates.

    “Wow,” gasped Alexis, her green eyes widening as she took it all in. Marco wasn’t as impressed, mainly because he had been there for so long. He did stop to look at some of the drawings, specifically the ones he drew. Alexis then turned to the hall way that had a sign next to it telling that the particular corridor led to the Math and Science halls. She sighed before telling Marco goodbye. He gave her small wave before she began her walk down the corridor.


    Alexis’ first two periods went by in a blur. Each class was approximately seventy minutes long with ten minutes in between classes. Since it was the first day, every class involved the same old welcome speech, introductions and of course, the rules of the class. Her Pre-Calculus class teacher, Mr. Bloomberg droned on and on about school policies and procedures. Her AP English teacher, Mrs. Tinkles was a lot bubblier and insisted on getting to know her students. Everyone in the class was at least mildly interested in learning about the new face in town, Alexis. When the red-head spoke about living in various regions the class gasped in awe. However some of the fascination died down when it was revealed that she had never been on a journey and hadn’t really trained her Pokemon. A lot of them were hoping to get a battle with a fresh face.

    When free period rolled around Alexis was surprised to see that very few people actually stayed in the classroom. Most just checked in with the monitor and headed out to the courtyards to relax or battle, especially the latter. As Alexis scanned the classroom she noticed a familiar brown hair guy with a small goatee sitting alone at a table in the back of the room. He was currently sketching out something on a piece of drawing paper, darkening some of the various lines he had drawn.

    “Marco!” Alexis cried out jumping up and down, furiously waving her hands to get his attention. She didn’t really need to do all that seeing how there were so few people in the class. Nevertheless, the boy looked up from his work, gray eyes meeting green eyes. Marco smiled warmly at Alexis and pointed at the seat next to him, inviting her to sit down. When Alexis sat down, she tried to get a peek at what Marco was drawing. It was a group of Unown, flying around in a cave. The strange symbol Pokemon were so detailed they looked like they could pop right off the page and float around the room.

    “Very cool drawing!” Alexis exclaimed

    “Thanks,” Marco replied with a wide toothed grin. “Actually I’m supposed to be drawing something for PAS right now”

    “PAS?” Alexis inquired.

    “PAS. It stands for the People Against Steroids,” Marco explained. The ends of Alexis’ lips began to twitch as she tried to hold back the laugh that was threatened to erupt from her throat. However Alexis couldn’t hold it and she ended up roaring with laughter. The few people who did remain in the class turned to look quizzically at the red hair girl whose head was thrown back as she howled with laughter.

    “¿Qué tiene de gracioso? What’s so funny?” Marco asked.

    “I’m sorry but that is by far the stupidest acronym and name I have heard in my life” Alexis replied once she calmed down.

    “Yeah, it’s not the best name in the world. Blame our founder,” Marco agreed. He stroked his tiny goatee for a bit before speaking again.

    “You know PAS is having its back to school meeting today. I think you should come” he said while working on his Unown drawing by adding a few rocks to floor of the cave.

    “That would be great although I honestly have no idea about the steroids thing,” Alexis replied honestly. She hadn’t heard anything about steroids.

    “Well just come to the meeting anyways” Marco stated with a sly grin “All your questions will be answered”


    As soon as the bell that signaled the end of school had rung, Alexis called her house. The maid Peyton had answered the phone.

    “Hey Peyton.”

    “Yes Lady Alexis?”

    “I’m staying after school today. If my mom wakes up or my dad comes home early can you let them know?”

    “Sure thing my lady. Anything else?”

    “No that’s all. Thank you!” Alexis said before hanging up. Alexis looked around her Mythology class, who had now mostly cleared out the room. She gathered her purple plaid backpack and left for the room that the PAS meeting would be held at. It was in Room 140, which was right across the hall from her free period room. However it wasn’t nearly as big.

    When Alexis arrived she saw that there were at least forty other students there from every grade. All the seats were taken so Alexis had no choice but to stand. She watched of them were obviously new, because like Alexis they had somewhat apprehensive looks etched on their faces. The veterans of the group were conversing with each other, recapping their first day back at school. Among them was Marco, who was actively chatting up anyone he made eye contact with. Alexis wondered whether or not she should go up to him. Before she could make up her mind, two very different figures walked into the room and the people in the room fell silent.

    The first was a girl who was very short, just less than five feet if Alexis had to guess. She had brown hair tied up in a ponytail and big warm brown eyes covered by thin-framed rectangular glasses. Her fair-skinned hands were clutching a black binder. Despite her bookish appearance, the girl held her head up and strode confidently towards the front of the room.

    The figure behind her was an extremely tall boy, well over six feet tall. He had chocolate colored skin and a thick afro. His brown eyes were also covered by glasses, although these had a more square appearance. He also went straight to the front of the room.

    Alexis and the others had their eyes glued to the pair. When the boy and the girl reached the front of the room, they gave each other a glance before looking to their audience and speaking in unison.

    “Welcome everyone to the first official PAS meeting for the 2015-2016 school year!”

    The audience applauded, with Marco doing a cat-whistle. The brown-haired girl stepped forward to speak solo.

    “My name is Diane Green,” she said in calm, feminine voice “I am a junior and the vice-president of this organization.”

    “I am Dante Kingston,” the boy with an afro said in deep, reverberating voice “I am a senior and the president of PAS.”

    “And I,” cut in Marco of all people “am Marco Reyes, the secretary of PAS. I am also a senior.”

    Alexis’ eyes widened at the revelation. Who would’ve thought that Marco held an officer position in an organization? Diane opened up her binder and took out a sheet of paper and placed it on a nearby table. She then asked everyone to write their names on it for attendance purposes. A line quickly formed so that everyone could sign their name. As soon as everyone had done just that, Dante spoke up.

    “PAS stands for People Against Steroids. Our mission is to educate people about the true nature in Vitanergy in the hopes we can the drug off the markets.” Dante stated. The audience once again applauded. A small smile played on his lips. He then motioned at Marco. Marco reached into his pockets and pulled out two small oblong pills, one red and the other blue. He then held them up for everyone to see.

    Those are the pills from the billboards and the race, Alexis thought.

    “21 years ago” Marco started in a serious voice “these pills were created to aid the miners and lumberjack’s Pokemon in their work performance.”

    Alexis’ jaw dropped at that statement. She quickly glanced around and saw some of the newer members had similar expressions.

    “Originally they were only used by the miners, lumberjacks. 5 years later, the government issued that National Guard was to use Vitanergy on their Pokemon. It wasn’t only until about 7 years ago that these drugs were made available to the general public,” Marco paused for a minute to look at the audience reaction. The organization’s old guard seemed to be a bit bored of this information dump. This was mainly because this same speech was given every semester when the club took in new members. The newcomers however, seemed to cling to every word he spoke. Marco noticed Alexis standing on the wall near the back. Even though his face was set in a serious expression, he was still glad to see the redhead.

    “There are two forms of Vitanergy,” Diane spoke up which caused all eyes to turn on her. She pointed her index finger at the blue pill in Marco’s left hand.

    “The blue one is taken every day like a ‘vitamin’,” she said “however it’s an anabolic steroid that drastically increases muscle mass and overall power in rapid time frame. This causes changes in temperament and loss of reproductive capabilities. Any Pokemon on the blue pill have an increased chance of going absolutely berserk on anybody, including their own trainers.”

    Alexis’ mind went back to the race and the Ursaring on a rampage. It was obvious to her that the brown bear Pokemon had been on the blue pill. However she wondered why the Ursaring just dropped dead all of a sudden. As if reading her mind, Diane answered Alexis’ unspoken question.

    “The red pill is full of caffeine and adrenaline. It’s used for short term bursts of energy. However this pill like the blue also increases irritability in the Pokemon. The red pill is more likely to cause the Pokemon to die from over exertion, heart attack or stroke”

    Well that explains a lot, Alexis thought. Overwhelmed by all the new facts, she shook her head furiously. A lot of thoughts were swimming through her head at the moment. The one the red-headed girl wanted answers to the most was how did something already deemed illegal by the IPLA manage to be used for so long. Steroids were considered to be one of the worst things to use on a Pokemon and drug rings were usually crushed by the IPLA in a matter of months. How did Vitanergy last for over 21 years?

    “Now I know most of you guys are aware that these types of substances are illegal,” Dante spoke up “But since we are a colonial region we do not go through the same rigorous surveillance that Kanto, Johto, Hoenn, Sinnoh and Unova go through. Furthermore anytime there is a probe, it is always explained with various cover ups.”

    Alexis had heard enough. It was official, Arcana was the most screwed up region she had ever lived in. Part of her wanted to tear out the classroom and board the next flight out of Arcana as soon as possible. It didn’t matter where she went, just so long as she wasn’t there. This was too much; she couldn’t even fathom the possibility of growing up in atmosphere like this. However another part of her wanted to do something about it. The adventurous side, the side that craved going on a journey wanted her to stay put and help PAS out. Sure she wouldn’t be challenging gyms or Contests, but saving a region was a big deal. One look around the classroom and she knew everyone else felt the same way. Both the old guard and the new blood both had the same determined expressions on their faces. Marco, Dante and Diane looked at their audience before turning to each other and nodding. Diane went back to her binder and pulled out another sheet of paper.

    “Since we are an organization that is dedicated to getting the true facts about Vitanergy to the public, we host a lot of rallies and protests,” she stated while writing on the new piece of paper. Marco was the next one to speak up.

    “We are holding a rally on Friday at Rhannu City Park. Anyone who is new wants to help out should sign this sheet with a phone number or email address.”

    Alexis practically ran to the front to sign her name and cell phone number.
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2011
  16. Phoopes

    Phoopes There it is.

    Good to see that Chapter 3 is up! Overall, it was a wonderful chapter, and cleared up most of the questions that people would have. However, I did notice a few things here and there that could be fixed.

    "Battled" should be "battle" here.

    There was another error that I distinctly remember, but I can't find it right now. I'll edit this later probably.

    Also, I was tempted to play a drinking game for whenever Alexis' face "turned red," or "flushed with embarrassment." (etc.) It's not a huge deal, but it was kind of distracting. Maybe you could make her slightly less awkward?

    Other than that, it was a great chapter! I'm curious to see what happens to Alexis, Marco, and the rest of the PAS. Hope to see some more good work from you!
  17. catzeye

    catzeye Writer's Block

    Thanks for the review phoopes!

    1. I'm glad it answered questions people might asked. Honestly that was the hardest part in writing this chapter.

    2. I fixed the battle typo as well as some others I spotted. If you remember the other error please let me know.

    3. A drinking game? Can I join? Haha, all jokes aside I see what you mean by that. I fixed most of them accept for the one where she was teased about her weight.

    4. Alexis, Marco and PAS are going to have it rough in this next chapter. But that's all I'm going to say on that matter.
  18. The Great Butler

    The Great Butler Hush, keep it down

    This is a strong opening. That said, while you do use some very effective tricks to deliver the punches you want (like the eyes thing, which is very good) I feel like it could have been fleshed out more in places. I think the reader should be able to picture the characters clearly right away, so more details on their appearances would have helped.

    You're picking up the pace with the description here which is good, but the somewhat weak start hobbles it slightly. That said you are catching up, so it definitely isn't bad. The President's actions are well captured and I can visualize them perfectly.

    Characterization and plot are intriguing me so far. This President Warburton is especially a curious one. With just two paragraphs of direct description, I already have quite a picture of his personality. His temper already stands out, and it makes me wonder about his morals that it appears he has set impossibly high standards for his henchmen and their Pokemon. And to what end is he doing this, I wonder?

    This paragraph gives me more of a view on the scientist's character, which is good as he had been a bit flat before. It's a good dynamic these two have, albeit a common one - the powerful, fearsome authority figure and the cowering subordinate.

    I do think you might want to give it a second look-over, though, because I noticed an easily-corrected error - the lack of "the" before "middle-aged man."

    Now HERE is where you've hit your stride. Right here. With these two paragraphs, you've firmly established President Warburton as a rather nasty type one would definitely not want to deal with and as a man who will stop at nothing to accomplish what his goals are. Keeping what those goals happen to be unclear so far is a good choice, as it draws me in further so I can find out what they are.

    Is the "workers he brought in from other regions" thing a nod to the issue of illegal immigration? Even if it isn't, it still provides a reality-based bend to the plot that makes it much more relatable in a single broad stroke.

    You're also filling in some description gaps now, which is another plus.

    For these goals, delivering them now is a very good idea. This makes his motives understandable. This is also, again, a plot very relatable from a real-life point of view.

    I would have liked some more information on Cornell's appearance, but again, it suffices. Mr. Smith seems to be the type who gets bossed around easily, so I ask myself, will he grow to be more courageous over time?

    Readers asking themselves such questions is something you want.

    Once again, I think you need to copy edit a bit more carefully. The missing period that should be at the end of the last sentence sticks out like a sore thumb. I also would have pointed out something about each scientist who spoke, to make the picture more vivid.

    This is a good paragraph, but it just makes me wonder one thing: for a man so powerful and seemingly cruel, the worst President Warburton would punish them with is repo men taking their possessions?

    I'll be honest, I knew that some sort of medicine or drug would be the solution, but I feel underwhelmed by how quickly the decision came along. With how long Smith built it up, Cornell essentially suggesting to make what amounts to a meth lab with instructions from the internet as the solution to all their problems sort of disappoints me. I find the context of it being a little hard to swallow as well, that it is "ingenious."

    Using the idea of what the academic world would do to them is clever.

    These two have an interesting dynamic between them. It feels like there might be something missing though. I get that it's early, but the characters feel a bit flat and need of personal quirks to set them apart. President Warburton was a good start at that.

    First off, it should be "Arcanian" if I'm not mistaken.

    Their relationship and interaction is starting to develop here. They aren't just showing a few textbook traits anymore, instead, they're becoming a bit more complex.

    Like this. This line makes me see a more caring, mothering side to her. That's what I mean - give them more three-dimensional personalities.

    Sorry, but I still can't help but be underwhelmed by this solution. The idea that the miraculous answer to their problems, some drug cooked with a recipe from the Internet, is something that needs this much work put into it isn't something I can easily swallow.

    Excellent passage to set up Smith's morals. There's some complexity to his personality now.

    I'm REALLY liking this now. These developments made it more exciting, as I'm now wondering where Smith went and how this will work. It's also sizable character development for both Smith (who is implied to have left) and Cornell, whose bravado against Warburton seems to have evaporated. That's the kind of thing you have to do, complex character development.

    She seems a bit courageous herself, considering how she answers his question honestly.

    That said, the tenseness of this scene is increasing steadily and I'm enjoying that.

    While I wouldn't have been surprised about Warburton's answer like Cornell is, this is yet another nice peer into their minds. Cornell seems willing to blur the lines of ethics herself and I definitely see Warburton as a recklessly greedy leader.

    I have to say, overall, despite some weaknesses (mostly in copy editing) this was very satisfying. It got off to a bit of a weak start, but picked up quickly, and by the end, every character who was given spotlight I could characterize mentally very well. There is an interesting dynamic of interaction between the various characters based on not only their traits but their positions as well, and reflecting that in how Cornell was not as confident once she was in front of Warburton is a sign of grasping that situations are fluid and can change, which is an important concept for a writer to understand. As for the plot itself, it flowed at a very effective speed, not too fast and not too slow. I like how it explores real-life themes such as the government-industrial complex, foreign workers, scientific ethics and so on.

    I don't have time to review another chapter right now, but I'm pretty sure I will be back.
  19. catzeye

    catzeye Writer's Block

    I added a little bit more description here and there. Description is one of my weaknesses since I worry that I might add too much or too little. In this case, I added too little.

    I'll admit that when I first started thinking about this idea, President Warburton was pretty much the bad guy "just because." As I went on, I thought of him more as a character and less as just an obstacle for the protagonists to overcome.

    President Warburton has a tendency to forget that people and Pokemon have daily limits that they reach. All of this is a result of his upbringing.

    Thank you for pointing that out! I've edited that now.

    It is a small nod that will be brought up occasionally throughout the story.

    His motives (becoming the worlds number one exporter of raw goods and proving those who doubted him wrong) are respectable. But like you said he is a very nasty man and the lengths he's willing to go to in order to achieve them takes all the respectability out of those goals.

    I added the period and gave some description of the scientists.

    A bit of head canon here: In my verse, professors don't make a lot of money unless their research involves Pokemon in regions like Kanto. Being a colonial region (where there are no native wild Pokemon), there is more opportunities to make good money being a regular chemist or geologist. All the researchers do not have backgrounds in Pokemon related fields. If they lost their funding and housing rights they would be forced to move to other regions (the closest being Unova) and working for a lot less. So yes, the repo man is the worst thing to happen to them.

    Dr. Cornell is a fast thinker and she can be persuasive at times (considering how she got some of the others to agree with her plan right away). However the whole comment about creating what is essentially a meth lab "ingenious" is an extremely sarcastic remark. The fact that she is willingly proposing an illegal idea that she knows has serious moral, legal and academic repercussions is very stupid. However she is so preoccupied with her soil research and getting President Warburton off her back that she just doesn't care.

    Really? Well there goes some more editing for me.


    Thank you for your review. I'll be editing some of my other chapters (adding more description here and there).

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