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Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Reflecting Balance - Special Episodes

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction' started by DarkerShining, Aug 31, 2019.

  1. DarkerShining

    DarkerShining Well-Known Member

    Hi everyone!

    For a while now, I've been wanting to supplement the main story of PMD: Reflecting Balance with some one-shots focusing on the supporting cast, set at different points in the timeline. Kind of like the Special Episodes of Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Explorers of Sky. And now, I can finally show off the first of these!

    So, I'll be aiming to write these so that you can understand what's going on if you haven't read the main story, and if there are any chapters that contain potential spoilers for certain parts of the main story, I'll include a warning.

    Okay, this first special episode focuses on Sirena the Vaporeon, who is one of the older sisters of Sera, one of the main characters of Reflecting Balance. Timeline-wise, it is set at some point before Chapter 17 of the main story.

    I've been working on this for quite some time, so I really hope you all enjoy it!

    ----

    Special Episode - Sirena


    ----

    Sirena glanced up at the blue sky as she stepped outside. Another sunny day. It had been about two weeks since it last rained, if she remembered correctly. She could hear voices in the distance and glanced over in the direction of Fenix Town, which was just a short walk from the house where she, her siblings and parents lived. The various rescue teams, including the one led by her younger sister, Sera, were probably making their preparations for whatever missions awaited them today.

    Sirena shook her head and began walking off in a different direction, deciding not to think too much about everything going on as she began making her way to a certain location.

    There was a certain place Sirena liked to visit. It was a beautiful lake she had discovered one day when she needed some time to herself and had decided to take a walk. At this point, she didn't fully remember what had led up to that. Did she get into a fight with one of her siblings? Was it that her younger brothers were being noisy and annoying her? Whatever happened, she had left the house and after walking for a bit, ended up coming across the lake.

    Sirena had always loved water, even back when she was an Eevee. So, no one was really surprised when she chose to evolve into a Vaporeon after she had reached a certain age.

    As she picked up the scent of fresh water and realized she was getting close to her goal, Sirena began to pick up the pace. Her expression brightened as the lake came into view, and she ran through the grass as fast as she could. Upon finally arriving at her destination, she leapt into the air and dove into the water.

    Swimming gracefully through the cool, clear water, Sirena felt at ease, as if nothing could possibly get in her way. At one with her element, all her worries and negative thoughts seemed to melt away. She stayed underwater for a while, just enjoying her alone time, until she noticed someone's silhouette from above. Swimming up to get a better look above the water's surface, she saw a large bipedal Pokémon resembling a light blue alligator approaching.

    "Oh, you're here too?" he asked as he looked over at Sirena.

    "Hello there, Irvin," Sirena said, smiling at the Feraligatr.

    "Hi, Sirena," Irvin responded, smiling and waving his hand at her.

    Despite his somewhat intimidating look, Irvin was a rather friendly Feraligatr. He was one of the Pokémon that Sirena had befriended during her visits to the lake. He seemed fairly laid-back and would regularly visit the lake on his days off from his part-time job. Sirena wasn't entirely sure what his part-time job actually was, but she would surely finally remember to ask him about it one of these days.

    "So, what brought you here today?" Irvin asked as he entered the water.

    "Oh, just felt like it," Sirena responded, swimming around.

    "Ah, I see," Irvin replied, nodding slightly. "Same here, really."

    Sirena continued to swim around, while Irvin seemed content to just relax near the lake's shore. As they quietly passed the time, certain thoughts that Sirena had tried her best to push aside began to resurface. A certain someone that seemed to get all the attention and praise from their parents. As she felt the sun's warm rays on her back, the image of her older sister, Amethyst the Espeon, took shape in her mind. The one who seemed as bright as the sun, the one who seemed capable of handling just about any task effortlessly with her psychic powers.

    Beautiful, mature, strong, composed, clever… Sirena let out a groan and dove back underwater as if to try to escape from her thoughts.

    Water was Sirena's element. It could take many shapes, from tiny raindrops to massive waves. In the water, Sirena felt graceful and strong. Even Amethyst couldn't outshine her here.

    "If only I could feel this way all the time…" Sirena thought to herself, as she quietly swam around below the lake's surface. "If I did, then maybe I…"

    After a few minutes, Sirena poked her head up above the surface, to find Irvin looking over in her direction with a somewhat concerned expression. He seemed to hesitate a bit, before speaking:

    "… You okay?" Irvin asked.

    "Well, I…" Sirena began, before being distracted by a shadow briefly flying overhead.

    Sirena and Irvin both looked up and saw a white swan-like Pokémon flying above them, before gracefully starting to descend towards the lake. Sirena let out a delighted gasp as she realized who it was.

    "Svanhild!" Sirena exclaimed, smiling as the Swanna prepared to land.

    "Oh, it is…" Irvin said, looking a little nervous all of a sudden. "Um, does it look like she's in a good mood today…?"

    "Yes, I think so," Sirena responded, nodding her head slightly.

    "Ah, okay then…" Irvin replied, letting out a sigh of relief.

    Sirena hadn't been around to witness it herself, but a while ago, something had happened this one day when someone managed to make Svanhild angry. From what Sirena understood, Irvin had tried to calm her down, and almost ended up with a broken arm because of it. While he narrowly avoided any serious injury, it was clear that he still felt a bit nervous around Svanhild after this incident.

    Sirena found it kind of hard to imagine, considering she hadn't been around to witness this side of Svanhild. The Svanhild she knew was polite, graceful, elegant… Just looking at her, Sirena couldn't help but smile.

    "Ah, Sirena! Irvin! You're here too!" Svanhild called out as she landed gracefully in the water and swam towards Sirena. "How nice it is to see you!"

    "It's nice to see you too, Svanhild!" Sirena eagerly responded.

    "Uh… Yeah," Irvin replied, nodding his head slightly. "The weather sure is nice, huh?"

    "Yes, it certainly is quite lovely," Svanhild responded, nodding her head. "Days like these are perfect for just taking a break and going for a swim."

    "It's the best way to relax, after all," Sirena said, swimming closer to Svanhild.

    "I couldn't agree more!" Svanhild responded with a happy expression as she looked into Sirena's eyes. "And getting to spend this time with you, darling, makes it even better!"

    Sirena giggled as she and Svanhild began to swim around the lake together. Out of all the Pokémon that Sirena had met and befriended during her visits to this lake, Svanhild was the one she enjoyed spending time with the most. Not that she didn't enjoy spending time with her other friends, but there was just something special about Svanhild. She didn't even know how to explain it.

    "Um… Should I leave…?" Irvin asked, watching the two from his spot near the shore with a slightly uncertain expression on his face.

    "Huh? Why?" Sirena responded, looking over at Irvin.

    "Well… Um… I was just thinking that maybe you two… wanted to be alone?" Irvin replied, smiling sheepishly.

    "… No, it's fine," Sirena responded, shaking her head.

    "Oh, okay…" Irvin replied, nodding his head slightly. "Just… let me know if you change your mind. I don't mind, really."

    "… Okay?" Sirena said, tilting her head slightly.

    Svanhild let out a small chuckle, although Sirena wasn't quite sure what to make of it. Was it something she or Irvin said just now?

    However, Sirena's train of thought was interrupted as thoughts of Amethyst began to surface once more.

    "Ugh, get out of my head!" Sirena thought to herself, letting out a low growl.

    Svanhild and Irvin both looked over at Sirena. Sirena quickly realized that both of her friends must've heard her.

    "Is something bothering you?" Svanhild asked, gently wrapping a wing around Sirena.

    "Well, I…" Sirena responded, blushing slightly.

    "Go on, you can tell me," Svanhild said, looking at Sirena with a gentle expression that seemed to be a smile.

    "Did you have a fight with one of your siblings, or something…?" Irvin asked, tilting his head slightly.

    "No, I… It wasn't exactly a fight…" Sirena responded, looking away. "Um… Svanhild, can I ask you a question?"

    "Of course, darling," Svanhild replied, nodding her head.

    "Do you… ever wish you were an only child?" Sirena asked.

    Sirena knew that Svanhild also had siblings, two sisters the same age as her, to be exact. The three of them all hatched around the same time, apparently, and from what Svanhild had told her during previous encounters at the lake, there was a bit of a rivalry between the three of them.

    Svanhild thought over the question for a bit, before answering:

    "Well… I'll admit, my sisters can get on my nerves at times," Svanhild said. "But even so, I couldn't imagine a life without those two. Competing with those two helps push me to be the best dancer I can be, you know?"

    "So… Your siblings motivate you to do your best…?" Sirena muttered, blinking a few times.

    "Something like that," Svanhild responded, letting out a small chuckle. "I guess we bring out both the worst and the best in each other."

    "… I see," Sirena replied, giving a half-hearted nod in response.

    "And what about you, Sirena?" Svanhild asked, looking into Sirena's eyes. "Since you asked me this question… I'm guessing part of you has wondered what it'd be like if you were an only child?"

    "Yeah… I guess so," Sirena responded, letting out a sigh. "I have five siblings, Svanhild. Five of them."

    "I know that," Svanhild replied, nodding her head. "Two older siblings, and three younger ones, correct?"

    "And not only that, but we're all different types!" Sirena suddenly shouted. "Different types with different needs… Do you have any idea what it costs to make sure all of us have what we need?"

    "Um… I'm not sure," Svanhild responded, tilting her head slightly. "Although, I imagine it must take a great deal of money, since your parents spend so much time at their jobs…"

    "Exactly!" Sirena replied with a scowl. "Honestly, I don't even get why they decided having six kids was a good idea…"

    "So… You think they should've stopped after they had you…?" Irvin asked.

    "Well… I don't know!" Sirena responded, smacking her tail against the water. "I suppose things would at the very least be different, but… would that really…?"

    "I see," Svanhild said, looking over at Sirena with a knowing expression. "As much as you wonder what could have been, you can't bring yourself to imagine a world without any of them in it, can you?"

    "… I guess not," Sirena responded with a pensive smile. "I mean... If none of them were around, then who would I even be?"

    Svanhild nodded her head knowingly. There was no denying that their siblings had in some ways helped shape them into their current selves. Taking that into account made it difficult to imagine such a different world.

    "That is indeed a good point," Svanhild said, giving Sirena a look. "But surely that isn't the only reason?"

    Svanhild swam closer to Sirena, gently touching her face with her wing. Sirena looked up at Svanhild's face, meeting her eyes.

    "Even if they may get on your nerves at times, you still care about them, don't you?" Svanhild asked softly, leaning in even closer so that her and Sirena's foreheads were nearly touching.

    "… Yes, you're right," Sirena responded, sighing.

    "As I thought," Svanhild replied, moving back a little to give Sirena a little more space.

    Sirena glanced up at the blue sky once more, the sun was still shining so brightly above them.

    "… Amethyst…" Sirena muttered, staring down into her own reflection in the water. "As much as I envy her… I… I still remember that we used to get along…"

    "Sirena…" Irvin said, looking over from his spot near the shore.

    "I looked up to her, you know?" Sirena said, looking over at her two friends. "Back when I was an Eevee… I admired her so much…"

    "Well, she is your older sister," Svanhild responded. "Plus, from the way you've described her, she sounds like quite the diligent, clever and strong individual. It is no wonder you'd see her as a role model."

    "Right…" Sirena replied, slowly nodding her head. "I could never be as amazing as her…"

    "Oh, darling, don't say such silly things," Svanhild responded, gesturing to Sirena's reflection in the water. "Can't you see how beautiful you are? Not to mention strong, and intelligent… I think you are wonderful, don't you agree, Irvin?"

    "Y-Yes, of course!" Irvin replied, nodding his head. "Don't sell yourself short, Sirena!"

    "Svanhild…" Sirena said, blushing slightly. "You… really mean that?"

    "Of course!" Svanhild responded, letting out a chuckle. "You know what? I think you should focus less on what you can't do, and more on the things you can do!"

    "What do you mean?" Sirena asked, looking up at Svanhild.

    "Think about it, darling," Svanhild responded, swimming around Sirena. "My siblings and I are all Swanna. There's not much difference in what skills we can gain and attacks we can learn naturally. But you, on the other hand, are capable of things that none of your siblings can do, since you are all different types."

    "Ah… Right," Sirena replied. "I can swim really well, breathe underwater, turn invisible in water… but I can't do any of those things on land…"

    "Well then, I guess you'll just have to bring your siblings to a place where you can show off your skills," Svanhild playfully suggested.

    "… Why?" Sirena responded, giving Svanhild a bemused look.

    "Why not?" Svanhild replied cheerfully. "Wouldn't it be fun to show them what you do best?"

    "I… I don't know," Sirena responded, looking away. "I mean, the reason I usually come here is so I can have some time away from them… and… so I don't have to think about things…"

    "… Darling, you can't swim away from your problems forever," Svanhild said.

    "… I know," Sirena responded, sighing. "After all, the reason we're talking about this is because I couldn't stop thinking about it, even after coming here…"

    Sirena closed her eyes. At this point, she knew that there was no point in trying to drown those thoughts, as they'd find their way back to the surface anyways.

    "… Svanhild, what should I do?" Sirena asked, looking up at Svanhild. "Can you tell me what to do?"

    "Hmm…" Svanhild swam around thoughtfully for a few moments, Sirena watching her as she awaited an answer.

    Irvin was also watching, curious about what advice Svanhild would give to Sirena. After a few moments, Svanhild stopped and looked over at Sirena.

    "… Well, to be honest, I think only you can make the right decision for yourself," Svanhild said.

    "Oh…" Sirena responded, looking downwards.

    "… For now, why don't we change the subject for a bit?" Svanhild suggested. "Ah, Sirena, why don't you tell me a little more about your other siblings?"

    "Not sure if that really counts as changing the subject…" Sirena responded, glancing over at Svanhild. "But… okay. Anyone in particular you want to hear about?"

    "You can just talk about them in any order you like," Svanhild replied.

    "Okay…" Sirena responded, thinking for a moment. "Well, my older brother Yoru tends to sleep a lot during the day, being a dark-type that likes to stay up late during the night and all. In that aspect, he's basically the opposite of Amethyst."

    "I see," Svanhild replied, nodding her head. "Continue."

    "And then there's Flare," Sirena said. "He's kind of quiet, I don't really know much about what he might be thinking about… seems to spend most of his time around Volt and Sera, as far as I can tell."

    "So, he looks out for his younger siblings, huh?" Svanhild replied.

    "I guess…" Sirena responded, shrugging slightly. "Volt can be kind of annoying at times… he never knows when to keep his mouth shut."

    "A bit of a troublemaker, from what I understand?" Svanhild replied.

    "Yeah…" Sirena responded.

    "Is there a reason he acts that way?" Irvin asked, waving his arm to show the other two water-type Pokémon that he was still paying attention.

    "I don't know," Sirena replied. "I sort of just try to ignore him… These days, he mostly seems to tease Sera, anyways."

    "Oh? Is there any particular reason for that?" Svanhild inquired.

    "Like I said, I don't know why he's like that," Sirena responded, looking away.

    "All right, let's move on, then," Svanhild replied. "Tell me more about Sera. She's part of a rescue team, right?"

    "Yeah, she formed a team with her friend, Blitz," Sirena explained. "She's usually out doing rescue team stuff alongside him and this new friend of hers… I don't remember his name at the moment."

    "I see," Svanhild responded, nodding her head. "So, she's busy with work, just like her parents?"

    "I guess so," Sirena replied, looking at Svanhild. "I think she's mostly doing it because she wants to seem more grown-up."

    "She's the youngest, isn't she?" Svanhild asked. "It's not that surprising for her to be in a bit of a hurry to grow up so she can be more like her older siblings."

    "Well, she certainly looks up to Amethyst," Sirena responded, rolling her eyes. "Always asking her questions about stuff…"

    "Ah, so she also looks up to Amethyst?" Svanhild replied, moving a little closer to Sirena. "Just like you did back when you were an Eevee?"

    "Yeah… I suppose she reminds me a bit of myself in that way," Sirena responded, thinking for a moment. "Although… I don't get the impression that the two are as close as Amethyst and I were back then…"

    "Oh? How so?" Svanhild inquired, looking a bit surprised.

    "I'm not sure…" Sirena responded, glancing around uncertainly. "Thinking back on it… Amethyst seemed… different, before."

    "Different how?" Svanhild asked, looking quite interested.

    "Um… I remember that… we used to play together, and… it seemed like she really enjoyed listening to me, even when I was just going on about random things," Sirena explained, closing her eyes as she tried to recall. "I don't know if it's because she's gotten older, or because Sera spends so much time away from home due to the rescue team stuff, but… there's just something about them that feels very different from the relationship I once had with Amethyst…"

    "Hmm, very interesting," Svanhild replied with a thoughtful expression.

    "… Are you concerned about your sister?" Irvin asked.

    "… Do you mean Amethyst or Sera?" Sirena responded, looking over at Irvin.

    "Um… Both, I guess?" Irvin replied, shrugging slightly.

    "Oh," Sirena responded, looking away. "I… don't know…"

    Things were quiet for a few moments, as no one really knew what to say. It seemed like Svanhild had something on her mind as she calmly swam around, her expression suggesting that she was just taking some time to figure out what to say.

    "Sirena?" Svanhild said, looking over at Sirena.

    "Yeah?" Sirena replied, looking back at Svanhild.

    "Maybe you should bring your little sister here sometime?" Svanhild suggested with a cheery expression.

    "Huh? Why?" Sirena responded, tilting her head.

    "Why not?" Svanhild replied. "I'm sure she'd like it here! Don't you agree, Irvin?"

    "Uh, yeah," Irvin responded, looking around. "I mean, what's not to like about this place?"

    "I know, right?" Svanhild replied, twirling around in the water. "Even if she isn't a water-type, I'm sure she'd appreciate the beauty of this lake!"

    "I guess so?" Sirena responded, blinking a few times with a confused expression.

    "You don't have to think so hard about it, darling," Svanhild said, looking over at Sirena. "I just think it might be fun for you and your little sister to spend some time together, that's all."

    Those words only made Sirena suspect that there was indeed something more to Svanhild's suggestion. Sirena had asked Svanhild for advice earlier, after all. Come to think of it, didn't Svanhild also suggest that Sirena find an opportunity to show off her skills to her siblings?

    "… I'll think about it," Sirena said.

    "Ah, you will?" Svanhild asked, seeming rather pleased.

    "Yeah… I think I get what you think I should do," Sirena responded, nodding her head.

    "Oh?" Svanhild replied, looking away with a coy expression. "And what would that be?"

    "I should try to understand my siblings better and get them to understand me, isn't that right?" Sirena said.

    "It does sound like a good idea," Svanhild responded. "At least, it couldn't hurt to try. Of course, everything might take a while to sort out, but in my opinion, this could be a good start."

    "If you say so," Sirena responded, nodding her head. "In that case, I'll try not to let you down!"

    "Hey, you shouldn't be doing it for my sake," Svanhild replied, giving Sirena a look.

    "Right…" Sirena responded.

    "Sirena…" Svanhild said, gently touching Sirena's cheek with her wing. "Even if it seems difficult, know that you're stronger than you think. I believe in you."

    "Svanhild…" Sirena said, looking up at Svanhild's face.

    "I hope you someday realize how wonderful you truly are," Svanhild said, leaning a little closer.

    "You say that, but…" Sirena blushed as she gazed into Svanhild's eyes. "No, you're the one that's wonderful…"

    The two continued to stare into each other's eyes, until…

    "A-hem…"

    The two glanced over at Irvin, who was still sitting nearby with an uncertain expression. As the two looked over in his direction, he smiled sheepishly and waved at them.

    "Uh, I'm still here," Irvin said, glancing around. "Just let me know if you want me to leave…"

    "No, it's fine," Sirena responded.

    "Are you sure?" Irvin asked. "Again, I really don't mind…"

    "Don't worry about it, Irvin," Svanhild said, looking over at the Feraligatr with a cheerful expression.

    "Right…" Irvin replied. "Are you feeling better now, Sirena?"

    "I guess so," Sirena responded, smiling. "Thanks… both of you."

    "No problem!" Irvin replied, smiling back at Sirena.

    "Anything for you, darling," Svanhild said with a happy expression.

    ----

    The three of them continued to spend time at the lake, swimming around and just having fun. Thanks to her friends and the cool water of the lake, Sirena was able to temporarily set aside the thoughts that had bothered her. The sun eventually began to set, and Sirena sighed as she reluctantly jumped out of the water onto the grass, knowing it was time to go home.

    "I should be heading home now," Sirena said, looking over at her two friends. "Have to be home in time for dinner, you know."

    "Yes, it seems it is about time for me to go home as well," Svanhild said.

    "Yeah, same here," Irvin commented, looking up at the sky.

    "I had a really good time with you guys today," Sirena said, smiling at the two. "And thanks again for listening to me earlier…"

    "So, once an opportunity presents itself, will you invite your little sister here?" Svanhild asked.

    "Like I said, I'll think about it," Sirena responded.

    "Good," Svanhild replied satisfied. "Let's try to meet up again soon, okay?"

    "Of course," Sirena responded, smiling at Svanhild. "I'll look forward to it!"

    "Same here," Svanhild replied, preparing to take off. "Until then, take care, darling!"

    "Bye for now!" Sirena said as Svanhild took off.

    "See you later, Svanhild!" Irvin said, waving to Svanhild as she flew off.

    Sirena stayed and watched Svanhild gracefully fly away, waiting until she could no longer see her before saying good bye to Irvin and beginning her walk home. As she slowly made her way back, she thought about the conversations she had had with Svanhild and Irvin.

    "Invite Sera to the lake, huh…" Sirena mumbled to herself as she walked. "I suppose I can do that, at least…"

    She just needed to figure out when to do so, and how to ask her. That was all. How difficult could it possibly be?

    ----

    End of Special Episode

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