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The Aura is With Me (Advanceshipping)

Discussion in 'Shipping Fics' started by lunarshadow, Aug 9, 2008.

  1. Vilya

    Vilya Knickerbocker

    Wow, a fic about Aura! I was absolutely thrilled to find this, and still thrilled to see the subject in such good hands.

    Some time ago, as I was craving Aura fics but couldn't find any, I started writing my own. And so I have thought extensively about the nature of Aura and conceived a theory around it, and, from what you've let us understand so far, I can see it is totally different from yours. So I was very interested to read another take on it, and I can't wait to learn more about it.

    I very much like your style of writing: I don't really know how to say this, but I find the vocabulary and expressions you use original and colourful. I was very impressed by the fight scene between Buizel and Infernape. One thing I find a bit odd though is when you describe people or events we have seen in the show. For the most part, we know what the characters look like, and we remember the episodes enough not to need a move-by-move coverage of the action. But I greatly enjoyed reading your fic so far, and will be sticking around for the rest of it (even though I'm really not a fan of Advanceshipping).

    Thank you for writing this!
     
  2. rowly

    rowly This Modern Love

    Wow, i really like your writing style and plot development. It's first class i must say. Descriptions are spot on and that battle was intense!

    I like how you take things slowly and surely, (i wish i could say the same for my fic...)

    excellent work! keep it up!
     
  3. Shadow-saur

    Shadow-saur Monkeyshipping, ftw!

    sweet. i love everything about this fic! the background of buizel gives him a very real personality, way more than 'i like to battle'. the way you described the battles, and made variations on the moves way incredible as well! i was a little confused with the prolouge, but that might have just been from reading italics... keep up the good work :)
     
  4. lunarshadow

    lunarshadow Hadou Aprentice

    Chapter Four: Skyridge[/i]

    Without a doubt, Sinnoh was probably her favorite region in the entire world. It had everything, the ocean, rolling hills, frozen wonderlands, treacherous mountains, and of course some of the best vertical views a woman could ask for.

    [17:36 P.M.] Pokémon League Summit, Sinnoh Region

    Cynthia ran this thought in her mind as she paced around in her residential quarters on the mountain plateau of the Sinnoh League. As Sinnoh Champion, she had to be close to headquarters, thus, her home was only a walk away. Everything in the region was close to her, her work, her family, her friends—Sinnoh was her home, and she would do anything to protect it.

    Usually she was out in the field doing training, researching ancient Sinnoh legends, or eating ice cream, but today it was crucial that she would be in a fixed location. After all, most of the places she went, like Mt. Coronet, couldn’t receive any cell phone service due to the remoteness of the setting, so she couldn’t be alerted of any news unless she was close to a landline.

    Cynthia paced some more and ran over the plan she had perfectly laid out several days ago. She couldn’t afford any mess-ups with so many lives at stake. All she had to do was to wait for the phone call from Flint, and then carry everything out as she planned.

    The Sinnoh Pokémon League was perched on a mountain on an island north of Sunyshore City but south of Stark Mountain. The range was naturally smaller because the island developed later and rose up into the sky to roughly two thousand meters into the air. The Pokémon league stood just short of the very top, on a plateau of the mountain just behind a large lake spring. The elevation caused the spring lake to overflow and generate an impressive waterfall, which was instantly sighted by any who passed through the Victory Road cave.

    Cynthia's house was just out of sight of the league, roughly five minutes of brisk walking across the mountain terrain. Her house was a wooden cabin, admittedly unfitting for an impressively paid elite champion, but suiting her very modest and cozy lifestyle. On her wooden door lay a typical “Welcome Home” sign, and beside the doorstep in front of the wall lay several potted flowers.

    Inside, her whole house lay inside of her living room with only a single wall and corner walkway separating it from her bedroom. Upon entering through her door, her coat and bag hanger lay to her upper right while on her left held the kitchen and dining bar. The front held the living room with a circular red and blue embossed carpet spanning the entire wooden panel floor, a modest TV and stand in the corner, a videophone right next to it, and three plush couches in the center. Cynthia made good use of the carpet, especially in times like this.

    She wasn’t the only one in the living room. Elite Four member Lucian Gutenberg was quietly sitting in one of the small sofas reading Homer’s The Odyssey in its original ancient Greek, acquired at a very exotic auction. He was a very intellectual guy, resourceful, and an incredible mentor. Once, he confronted the trio of Pokémon trainers Ash, Brock, and Dawn, and helped Dawn’s Buizel to realize certain things he needed to adapt, and likewise with Dawn how she should respond to her knew Pokémon. He had long, purple hair that flowed down to his shoulders and large crystal clear glasses. He wore dark red dress pants, shoes, and a red suit with a purple hued feather in the outer pocket. At a mere thirty years old, he dressed to impress, and his battling skills backed it all up. Lucian was usually calm during hours of anticipation such this, but nonetheless he couldn’t help but feel the importance of success with this endeavor.

    “Excuse me, Cynthia?” he asked his superior.

    “What’s up, Lucian?” Cynthia continued to walk up and down the fuzzy carpet hanging her head and using her hands to articulate to herself what she thought.

    “It’s really unnecessary to pace like that in nervousness. I don’t think you’re doing yourself any good that way.”

    “I apologize, you’re right, but I cannot help but feel the need to make sure I hadn’t left anything out,” Cynthia stopped and turner her head toward him.

    “I doubt you’ve left anything out,” Lucian quietly closed his book and flicked a smile up at Cynthia. “We are dealing with the biggest crime syndicate in all of Sinnoh so I’m sure you’ve thought everything out as thoroughly as possible. You have been known for your impressive strategies and decision making on and off the battlefield.”

    “I know,” Cynthia said. “And I appreciate your praise. But, still, I am starting to worry that perhaps Flint didn’t—”

    RINGRINGRING!!! PHONECALLPHONECALL!!!

    Cynthia bolted over to the video phone and immediately picked it up. Lucian mildly turned his attention to the video phone right behind Cynthia. “I think our wait is over.”

    “Hello? Is that you Flint?”

    Back at the Sunyshore Pokémon Center, Flint started up the video call and began talking, “Yo, Cynth! What’s up? You wanted a call right? Here it is, at your service!”

    “Well, I’m glad you remembered,” Cynthia chuckled to herself and answered back. “So you did find Ash, Brock, and Dawn, right?”

    “Yeah, I got all three of them!”

    “Hey guys! It’s great to see you all again! You too, Pikachu!” At that moment, Ash, Brock, Dawn, and Pikachu reached Flint’s side. Cynthia looked up at the adolescent teens.

    “Hi, Cynthia! Long time no see!” Ash said excitedly.

    "Pika! Pikachu!" Pikachu jumped off of Ash’s shoulder and onto the videophone desk.

    “Hey, Cynthia! It’s great to see you again!” Dawn waved.

    Brock, once again feeling his hormones rev back up, rushed to the screen and spoke, “Oh, Cynthia! So many months it has been and my heart is sick with longing!”

    “Hey Brock!” Cynthia chuckled at his antics, mentally grateful that he was phoning from miles away. “It’s good to see you again as well!”

    “Oh, Cynthia! Now that I have seen you again at last, could you cure my lovesick heart with your–ACK...! Not again…!” Brock fell down, paralyzed once again by his Croagunk. Cynthia and Brock’s Croagunk chuckled in unison and Cynthia began addressing Flint.

    “So, Flint, how did your battle go?”

    “Well, hehe,” Flint looked at Cynthia and spoke with a slight twitch in his eye. “You’ve got me beat, Cynth! I really got my afro handed to me with this one.”

    “Hah! I told you Flint! I TOLD YOU! Ash, congratulations!” Cynthia laughed with such immense satisfaction.

    “HEY! It wasn't an official six on six battle, so I still have a chance to beat him you know!" Flint retorted in his defense.

    Cynthia flew at the videophone’s camera and jabbed a finger at the lens. “I! TOLD! YOU! SO! I totally knew it would happen! I probably should’ve put my salary on it! You would’ve lost so badly!”

    “Jeez, Cynth! How was I supposed to know? Dude, next time, feel free to bet a million bucks on Ash and prepare to lose it! This only happened once!”

    "Right, sure, we'll find out at the Sinnoh League when it counts for the record books,” Cynthia rolled her eyes. “That million bucks is as good as mine! How about you, Ash? How do you feel about your battle against an Elite Four member?"

    “It was really an awesome battle and I couldn’t have asked for anything better!” Ash pumped up his fist as he spoke in reply. Then he looked down slightly and lowered his fist. “But now Buizel is in his ward resting up. He really gave it every last bit of energy he had.”

    “Wait Ash, did I hear correctly? You have Buizel?” Lucian asked, squeezing into the videophone. “I thought Buizel was Dawn's Pokémon.”

    “Hey, Lucian! How’s it going? Yeah, long story short, Dawn and I did a trade,” Ash stated.

    “Really? Dawn, are you there? What did Ash trade for Buizel?” Lucian asked.

    “Hey, Lucian! Ash traded me his Aipom,” Dawn replied. “We figured that Aipom really liked contests, and I wasn’t cut out to really work with Buizel’s in regular battles, and it worked out really well!”

    “Well, congratulations Dawn! In hindsight, I see you’ve made a great choice. I was hoping you would find out what Buizel truly wanted, and I’m glad to see that you did, even though it wasn’t quite what I had in mind. I wasn’t expecting a trade, but it seems like it worked out perfectly and I’m very glad to hear that! But to business, Cynthia, we’d better not keep these three waiting.”

    Cynthia then centered herself in the videophone camera. “Alright. Ash, I do believe Flint has mentioned the situation with Volkner and his Gym.”

    “Yeah, he mentioned. Flint said that I should get Volkner’s spirit back with a Gym battle. But I will definitely challenge him. I probably was going to anyways.”

    “I knew you would be the man for the job, Ash. I know you won’t disappoint us,” Cynthia grinned. “By the way, just a little side note, when Volkner was at the height of his career he would always demand a four on four battle. Thought I’d give you a little heads up."

    “Hey, thanks for the advice, Cynthia!”

    “Oh yeah, one more thing. The two of us will be heading over to Sunyshore soon. I, for one, want to have the honor of seeing your last battle in the Sinnoh Gym circuit and your entry point to the Sinnoh League. And I think Lucian wouldn’t want to miss out on that either.”

    “Ash, I didn’t have the privilege of seeing your battle skills the last time we met,” Lucian behind her nodded as she acknowledged his intentions. “I promised you a battle once you conquered the Sinnoh League, but I think I need to sample your battle skills in the meantime. You are a very promising contestant, if I do say so myself.”

    Ash was now grinning from ear to ear. “Hey, thanks both of you! I am so psyched about my battle tomorrow!”

    “We’ll be there in just twenty minutes or so. Don’t go anywhere!”

    “Alright, bye Cynthia!” Ash called out.

    “Pika! Pikachu!” Pikachu said.

    “Bye, Cynthia!” Dawn waved goodbye.

    “See you soon, Cynth,” Flint said.

    “Oh… ACK… Cynthia…!” Brock mustered while on the floor.

    “Bye, Ash, Dawn, Pikachu, Flint, and Brock! See you soon!” Cynthia chuckled to herself and spoke again. She hung up and quickly hustled around.

    Up in the Sinnoh League HQ, Lucian was under the impression they would depart immediately and had already pulled out his specific Poké Ball for the job.

    “Cynthia, shouldn’t we teleport right now?”

    “Well, I still need to make one last phone call,” She picked up her modest clasper, Poké Balls, black purse, and slung it around her shoulder before dialed one last number in to her videophone. After a few rings, the line connected through.

    “Hello, Mom? Dad?”

    Back in humble Celestic Town, two elderly citizens of Sinnoh picked up and saw their one and only Sinnoh Champion daughter smiling at them.

    “Darling! It’s so good to hear your voice once again!”

    “Thanks, guys. It's so good to see you guys again! Hey mom, dad? Are you guys alright?”

    “Hey, hey, your old folks can handle themselves,” the champion’s father replied. “We’re fine, but things are starting to get tighter here. We’ve been keeping tabs on the museum.”

    “Has anything drastic happened with their re-investigation in the ruins?” Cynthia pressed onward.

    "Nothing yet dear, thank God, but we’ve confirmed that they’re using our museum as their base for now,” her mother replied, clutching her heart as she did. “Last time they were here they simply made off with the two legendary orbs but now they must be back for something more."

    "I was beginning to worry,” Cynthia sighed a small relief. “I remember when that trio of admins destroyed the ruins, and thankfully nothing else was taken, but I’m still completely stumped about what they are trying to dig up. I'm coming back though. I have to protect you guys and my hometown.”

    “Well, it’ll be tough. We are the only ones who know about the fact that they’re back in Celestic Town,” Cynthia’s father cautioned. “Your mother and grandmother just went to the museum one day after a holiday weekend to find it was locked! No one else suspects a thing! I mean, they’ve taken the entire Jenny Police Department hostage, using their own henchmen as temporary Police, and are now using the museum as a base. Anyone who’s tried to get inside has been caught and thrown into captivity like the police! We were the lucky ones. We saw them just as they were locking down the entire museum from the inside out. They’ve even tapped the phone lines of the Pokémon Center, and I don’t even know whether they’ve done the same to the civilian houses!”

    “Is it starting to get out of hand?” Cynthia with a burdened voice.

    Cynthia’s mother looked at her husband and then at her daughter and sighed, “Yes. Things are changing.”

    “So it’ll only be a short amount of time before they finally control all of Celestic Town?”

    “Yes,” the Sinnoh Champion’s parents glanced at each other with a reverberating reply.

    A long and stagnant silence settled under the roofs of the champion’s parents and over the roof of the champion herself.

    Cynthia buried her eyes in her right hand while she held the receiver in her left. Lucian saw this and tenderly put his hand on her shoulder, “Cynthia, they’re waiting. The sooner we can solve a small Gym crisis, the sooner we can end Celestic’s.”

    “You’re right,” Cynthia consented as she took her hand away from her face and talked again to her parents. “This means I’ll just have to make Ash aware as quickly as humanly possible.”

    Her mother sat back upright and talked a slightly frustrated voice, “Cynthia please! I don’t understand why you need him to help you! You said it yourself six weeks ago that he didn’t come deliberately, you two just happened to meet up! Besides, for goodness sake Cynthia, he’s just a boy!”

    “Mom. Boy or not, I think Ash will be able to do more about this crisis than anyone can.”

    “Why?”

    “Look, mom, I have my reasons.”

    “Well, honey, I hope you know what you’re dealing with, trying to take all of them down and all, along with a sixteen year old boy, no less.”

    “It’ll be fine! Besides, I think you’ll like him pretty quickly. Grandma’s already met him, he’s a really great Pokémon Trainer, and he’s such a great person. Come on mom, have I ever not known what I was dealing with?”

    Cynthia’s mother cracked a smile at the thought despite the foreboding air. It wasn’t the first time she asked this question, and she knew it wouldn’t be the last.

    “Well, there was that one time…”

    “Hey! That was when I was three! We don’t need to go over all of this again, please? I just climbed a tree, slipped, and sorta fell on top of you. What’s the big deal?” Both mother and daughter were laughing and massaged the backs of their neck where they landed as if it happened only yesterday.

    Lucian off to the side smiled and cocked his right eyebrow up to his scalp thinking, Wow. I always thought she was weird, but this is pushing it!

    “Well, I’ll leave you to round up the boy and take care of your business, Cynthia Apologue.”

    “Thanks mom. I’ll make sure to come back as soon as I can. Trust me. Things will turn out alright at the end of this. I promise!”

    “Promise?”

    “Promise.”

    Cynthia’s mother and father glanced at each other and knew that what their daughter said was and will hold true. A promise was a promise, and there was no greater commitment than that.

    “Alright, Cynth, you said so!” her mom said.

    “Take care,” her dad added.

    “We love you!” the two said simultaneously.

    “Bye mom! Bye dad! I will, and I love you!” At that, both parents and daughter hung up their receivers.

    Lucian looked at the clock closest to him and saw that roughly fifteen minutes had passed during the phone call. Consequently, he withdrew the same Poké Ball out of his jacket coat, about to call out his Pokémon when he stopped and saw Cynthia rising from her videophone stool.

    “Cynthia?”

    “What, Lucian?” Cynthia said as she had just slung her handbag over her shoulder in a more comfortable position. “I thought you said we should go.”

    “I know, but I have just one question.”

    “Yeah, what’s that?”

    “Why do you want to take Ash along with us?” Lucian raised his eyebrow quizzically at the Champion. “I mean, Flint asked you and all you said was that he could hold his own in battle, and your parents even asked you and all you said was, ‘I have my reasons’. There has to be something better up your sleeve that you’re hiding.”

    Cynthia cracked a sly grin at her overly analytical comrade and said, “You’ll know soon enough, as soon as we get over to Sunyshore City that is.”

    “Are you going to tell all of us then at the same time?” Lucian pushed the center button of the ball with his thumb as it made the satisfying click and continued talking to Cynthia.

    “Yeah, of course. I have to,” Cynthia replied as Lucian threw his Poké Ball into the air.

    “Why?” Lucian pressed on as he watched the emitted white light shape into a humanoid figure.

    “Well, because Ash is going to ask me the same question, and you know how I hate repeating myself twice.”

    “Alright, then. You ready to go, Alakazam?” Lucian paused as he watched his Alakazam appear right in front of him and conceded to the Sinnoh Champion.

    Lucian’s Alakazam replied with a sturdy, “Ala-kazam!” as he raised his psychic spoons up into the air.

    “Alright, Cynthia. You know the drill, let your mind rely on mine,” Lucian instructed as he closed his eyes in unshakeable concentration.

    “Gotcha,” Cynthia too closed her eyes and focused all of her mental attention to the man in the red blazer in front of her.

    Lucian’s Alakazam’s eyes glowed a dark blue, signaling it’s trainer to make the order.

    “Alright then, Alakazam. Use teleport!”

    [17:49 P.M.] Sunyshore City (Pokémon Center), Sinnoh Region

    Back in the Pokémon Center in Sunyshore City, Ash Ketchum hung up the videophone and pondered why the Champion of all of Sinnoh was coming over to see a single Gym battle of a teenager. That was definitely unusual.

    "Wow, I can't believe that Cynthia and Lucian are going to be watching my Gym battle tomorrow," Ash said astounded.

    "You know I'll also be there,” Flint nodded. “I want to see my old friend be brought back to his normal self. Yeah, that is a bit unusual, but you already know that Cynthia is a very outgoing person. Also, she does seem to take a liking to you. I guess it’s because you hold a lot of promise."

    “Yeah, well, Cynthia might like Ash, but Brock is still in denial about it,” Dawn giggled.

    "Oh man that was two jabs by Croagunk in a single day! I need a break from my love life," Brock got up from the floor and returned his Croagunk.

    Ash, Dawn, and Flint laughed a little bit before Ash told the rest of the group, "Hey guys, since my Gym battle is tomorrow, I'm going outside to train a bit."

    “Don't you remember that Cynthia will be coming in like twenty minutes or so?” Flint spoke up to remind Ash. “Cool down a bit. Chill, relax!"

    Ash instead just ran out of the sliding doors of the Pokémon Center and yelled back, "Don't worry! It'll be short! Come on Pikachu!"

    “Pika!” Pikachu jumped off the desk and ran after his trainer outside the Pokémon Center.

    Flint was about to run after him before Brock spoke up, "Hey, Flint, why don't we just let Ash train a bit? He's probably not going to have any time to train once Cynthia and Lucian come anyways. Let's just freshen up and shower. I mean, I'm drenched in sweat after the battle the two of you had."

    “Yeah, please, Flint? I feel so disgusting after days without a shower and then a melting battlefield!” Dawn pleaded.

    "Yeah, why not? After all, Cynthia is coming,” Flint laughed a bit and agreed. “I've got the Sinnoh Champion to look handsome for!"

    Brock spoke back, "That makes two of us."

    Dawn just rolled her eyes as she ran to the showers.

    Ash stopped outside of the Pokémon Center and looked up at the sky, hoping to get some inspiration. Training was never concrete, more like a do-what-you-can process, make-it-up-as-you-go-along.

    Hm, Ash thought. I think we might as well start training right here as soon as possible. I'll get the guys to have some fun today!

    "Come on out! Monferno, Grotle, Staraptor, and Gliscor!" Ash yelled, tossing all of his Poké Balls out at once.

    "Mon, monferno!" Ash's own Fire and Fighting type Monferno came out flared up and jumping up and down. Monferno was not originally Ash’s own Pokémon like Buizel. Monferno was originally Ash’s rival Paul's Pokémon as a lowly Chimchar and was treated very roughly without any real compassion or love. Paul, ruthless to all of his Pokémon, claimed that they wanted the treatment, and that if he cared for them at all, they would become spoiled. In the end, Chimchar was tossed aside as the weakest link in Paul’s arsenal, endured the post-traumatic stress of a Zangoose attack, shouldered the emotional trauma of being treated like a tool, and suffered from lack of affection until Ash extended his hand to him and welcomed him to the fold. Oddly enough, his evolution was the result of a battle against his former master. He, like Buizel, eventually adjusted and has grown immensely powerful since.

    "Gro¬—tle!" Grotle, a Grass type Pokémon, stood willing and sturdy for his trainer. Grotle was Ash's second Pokémon that he caught in the Sinnoh region. He originally stayed near an elderly woman as a Turtwig in the middle of the forest between Sangdem and Jubilife. An enormously sacrificial and altruistic soul, he stayed near the elderly woman because the forest was full of Pokémon bickering and picking fights amongst each other. Turtwig actually took it upon himself to keep the peace. One day, Ash came along and Turtwig, seeing how Ash protected all of his captured Pokémon as though they were his children, eagerly joined Ash's team, evolved, and partook in many of the most challenging battles Ash participated in.

    "Star! Starrraptor!" The Flying and Normal type addition to Ash's team took to the skies from his Poké Ball. Staraptor evolved from the very first Pokémon that Ash had caught in the Sinnoh region. Originally, Starly was caught to do one job; find Pikachu after he was forcefully separated from Ash upon arriving at the Sinnoh region. Starly successfully completed his function back then and stuck with Ash to become the most powerful Pokémon he could be. Every once in a while, he was rejected from battles due to opponents posing severe type disadvantages like Roark, a rock type Gym Leader. Regardless, he has since re-asserted himself as a powerhouse in Ash's team, especially after evolving into his final stage after the Poké Ringer Competition. Now, Staraptor still finishes search and rescue missions like a pro and mastered many of the most advanced flying techniques a bird could possibly learn.

    “Gli, gliscor, gli!” Lastly came Gliscor, the Flying and Ground variant on the team who happily bounced on her stinger tail eagerly waiting for her trainer’s requests. Still the team clown, Gliscor had evolved from a Gligar once it had gained enough confidence in herself. Originally, Gligar was afraid of many things including heights, incoming attacks, stares of opponents, and even taunts from her own teammates. It had been an uphill battle for Ash to try and improve Gligar’s self-esteem, but eventually the both of them pulled through, Gligar evolved into a two meter wingspan behemoth, and Gliscor had since risen to the uber-tier of Ash’s roster, knowing moves like X-Scissor, Fire Fang, and Steel Wing.

    "Pika, pikachu!" And of course, Pikachu was Ash's best friend in the entire world. No one, not even a human ever had a place in his heart like Pikachu had. They stuck together through thick and thin, better and worse, and even death. They were inseparable, and every day furthered their friendly bonds and love for each other like best friends and real blood brothers. Pikachu jumped back up on Ash’s shoulder, and seeing all of his friends and brothers in arms before him, he sounded off.

    "Alright guys, this is the final test, the finale to our Sinnoh Gym challenge. Let's win our last badge! Who's with me?" Ash was ready for some intense training to be done if he was going to win the final badge for his entry into the Sinnoh League.

    In Pokémon tongue, everyone responded their excitement and affirmations with stomps of the feet, flaps of the wing, and punches in the air.

    "Alright! And guess what, you guys? The champion of the Sinnoh region is coming to see this battle, so let’s win this one!"

    As soon as Ash had finished his pep talk, Gliscor, as always, became over excited and leapt up into the air, specifically to come pancake-ing down on Ash. “Gli! Gligo!”

    “Wait Gliscor, wait, wait, no, no, no, NO! ACK! KAH!” Ash managed to cough out just as Gliscor flattened Ash.

    Gliscor laughed merrily with her favorite game of Ash flattening, “Gli! Gli, gliscor!”

    What am I going to do with you… Ash thought to himself.


    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


    Dear Readers,

    I’ve decided upon using the metric system you mother****ers. I may be American, but the customary system is terrible. NASA crashed a Mars probe because of that in 2000. Seriously. I can’t calculate physics in customary or tell the temperature either. Metric system is just better, bam.

    Lucian’s name makes total sense considering that he loves books and apparently a guy named Gutenberg made the first printing press. I will also explain later how books written in regular world languages can be found in the Pokémon world.

    You know it’s funny. In my original Dear Readers back in 2008 I gave a shout out of thanks to guys like LuciferIX, katfairy, and EarthBorn0. It’s strange to think that those people aren’t even active anymore. Time flies man. DEFINITELY check out all of their work. It was EarthBorn0 who gave me the inspiration to write a fanfiction about Advanceshipping that doesn’t suck. LOL.

    As always, any rating or reviewing is always absolutely appreciated! Thanks to ALL!


    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


    Story Notes:

    14 years ago – Lucian Gutenberg is born


    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


    Author’s Notes:

    Uploaded, 12/20/08
    | two revisions/general plot decided, no egg device/large group dialogue challenge |
    - beginning of no update period
    RE: edit. 09/02/11
    original title, “The Telephone Game”
    RE: edit 10/29/12


    You know, I keep using the same excuse of Homework and School and stuff, but it's unfortunately the real reason why these updates are so far in between.

    Anyway! Happy Thanksgiving! I thought I might as well kick back my old regiment with a new chapter, so again, rate and review to reader's discretion!

    To Vilya: You know, I was actually coming up with this fic because I couldn't find any satisfying Aura works, except for Destiny Bond by EarthBorn, but there were things that I think describe Aura as well, and I wanted to put them in here.

    To rowly: That is really what I'm going for. Slow but steady, and with detail, that is my style. Thanks!

    To Shadow-saur: That was also what I was going for, a personification of Buizel because he is often thought of as a bully and a robot, but he is one of my favorites on Ash's team.

    Happy Thanksgiving!
     
    Last edited: Oct 21, 2013
  5. Insidious_Dreamer

    Insidious_Dreamer Dreams = Reality

    *smiles* Wow, probably the best fanfic Ive read in a while - nice work my friend!
     
  6. CyberBlaziken

    CyberBlaziken A Greater Evil

    Very nice chapter Lunar.I think this is going to be great.So far one of the best I'm reading.
     
  7. lunarshadow

    lunarshadow Hadou Aprentice

    You know, it's really, really nice to know that people out there actually think that my work is decent! Thanks for the reviews, both of you!
     
  8. RobSp1derp1g

    RobSp1derp1g On my way...

    I'm liking this fic, but I want some more Advanceshippy moments...

    Can you add me to those PM lists of yours?
     
  9. lunarshadow

    lunarshadow Hadou Aprentice

    You know, for some reason, I get some kind of 500 Internal Server Error EVERY STINKING TIME I TRY TO EDIT MY FIRST POST, so I can't do any of that. I will make a mental note of that though for the next chapter.
     
  10. Vilya

    Vilya Knickerbocker

    It's times like these I really wish I could get my hands on a DS and D/P! :( It's so sad I'm not able to appreciate the references to the game you make.

    Thank you for the chapter! Can't wait to see where this goes, but hey, take all the time you need!

    Oh and I went and read Destiny Bond, thanks for the link! :D
     
  11. EarthBorn

    EarthBorn ConVulATiON

    Bah, I hate being really late to review. :( Better late than never, I guess.

    So...we have good characterization here. I love the way you protrayed the Sinnoh Elite 4, they seem to be quite likable and quite game and anime based. Cynthia especially.

    Now, I'm wondering exactly when May's gonna show up, but I guess we'll have to wait till after Ash's Gym Battle.

    Keep it up!
     
  12. lunarshadow

    lunarshadow Hadou Aprentice

    Chapter Five: Rising Rivals

    It was an evening with only a few clouds in the sky, and the sun had just set itself under the Earth’s horizon. Underneath the blackened blue overhead lay a stadium erupting in cheers in response to the battle taking place within. On the sandy ground, a field was outlined by the borders, boundaries, and the all-too recognizable Poké Ball shape in the middle, where all of the night’s action centered. On both ends stood Pokémon trainers, each commanding a Pokémon of choice, but on one side, the advantage was clearly his beyond the shadow of a doubt.

    [~~:~~ P.M.] Evergrande City (Pokémon League), Hoenn Region

    From the vantage point of the Pokémon League torch, now ablaze with simmering glory, the right-most side of the enormous stadium hosted a young teen of sixteen who stood tall, invigorated, wearing his red cap and jeans complete. On his side stood his faithful and loyal partner and friend, Pikachu, while out on the field lumbered his blubbery, yet swift Pokémon, Snorlax. Ash Ketchum ordered the final attack.

    “Snorlax, jump and use Hyper Beam and finish this up! Full power!” he shouted out in the distance amidst the ear-splitting crowd.

    Immediately, as if it were a doomsday sentence, an enormous mass of body weight appeared in the sky to unleash his savage, charged beam of pure energy upon his target.

    A young boy of just nine years old on the opposite side wore black rimmed glasses, a green polo shirt, and dark green shorts. As each fraction of a second speed by, his entire body cringed ever more rigidly as he looked up at his opponent in the sky. His hands were both balled into sweaty fists as he turned his gaze out onto the rock and sand stadium. A Swellow was lying in the dust trying to shake off the pain from the last assault, but the boy knew it was over no matter what he ordered next. Max Maple’s Pokémon was about to be pulverized.

    “No! Swellow, use Agility to dodge it!” he yelled out in a desperate attempt to evade the colossal assault.

    The Swallow Pokémon looked up to see where his opponent had gone, but no sooner had it looked up the Snorlax unleashed his attack.

    “Swe? Swellow!” it yelled out in surprise.

    The brunt of the energy burst nailed its target and sent it and the field around it in a furious cloud of rock, sand, and dust. Max shielded his eyes against the savage gale of debris and waited for the aftermath for it to reveal itself. Max tore his eyes away from his arms and saw what he dreaded, but knew he would see. The battle-worn bird fell from the air to the ground knocked out.

    Another, familiar voice called out in the distance, “Swellow is unable to continue battling; Snorlax is the winner!”

    The surrounding crowd let loose an ear-splitting cheer, but the boy was oblivious to both entities. He could care about the referee’s verdict, or the crowd’s over-enthusiastic affirmation. All he knew was that before the ref even uttered his decision he had known what would have been declared, and it was his entire fault that it did. Max felt that every attack he ordered only summed up to a crushing defeat.

    The young boy looked up from the field and stole a glance at the scoreboard up in the middle of the stands. He looked to the right half of the scoreboard to look at the Pokémon that were in his opponent’s slots. Only four slots were filled and all were in full light and color. The boy’s opponent hadn’t lost a single Pokémon, nor had he sent out his full roster. The boy looked above for the human slot and saw the same vibrant, confident, and red-caped face he did across him on the field. Looking to the left, he saw his own determined face beginning to fade into gray on the screen, and underneath it, all six slots filled with his Pokémon, and all of them were also faded gray. All six of Max’s Pokémon were wiped out.

    On screen, the animation switched from the bi-sectional win and loss table straight to a dominant portrait of Ash in its center blaring ‘Ash Ketchum! Winner! Congratulations!’ It was final. Official. Finito. Game over. Max lost the tournament.

    “The victory goes to Ash Ketchum of Pallet Town!” Continuing his duty, the referee raised his right flag high into the air and vainly announced to the all-too-knowing stadium. As soon as he raised his red flag in his right hand, he continued on, “Ash Ketchum is the winner of the Hoenn Pokémon League!”

    Max’s mind had gone from gruesome slow motion into reverse. All six of my Pokémon. It’s over. I lost… It’s over... I lost!

    Max summoned what little strength he had left to tear his eyes off of the recorded truth on the scoreboard and back to his fallen warrior, center field. Water began to build up in his eyes and filled his eyelids to the brim as he ran out into the dusty field even though it hadn’t settled yet. He collapsed on his knees before his fallen being of the sky and picked up the exhausted bird. His words became distorted with his sadness and self pity.

    “I’m sorry Swellow, you did your very best and I didn’t. I’m so sorry...”

    “Swel, swellow,” the bird cawed out.

    The boy solemnly nodded at his Pokémon’s response and said back, “Here, have a long rest.”

    Max drew a compressed Poké Ball from his belt, enlarged it, and loosed a stream of red light and withdrew his tired Pokémon.

    Immediately large tears overflowed from his face and cheeks onto the sandy battleground and moistened the hard surface. He usually wouldn’t let them fall in the presence of his friends, but now that no one was there, there was nothing to stop him.

    I’m so sorry everyone! Max inwardly scolded himself. I couldn’t do it! I’m just not strong enough, and you were! All of you!

    After several moments of melancholy silence, Max noticed a pair of sneakers planted within arm’s reach from his point. They were red and black sneakers, and definitely belonged to Ash. He looked up and saw the familiar smiling face and a yellow electric rodent perched on his shoulder.

    “Max, that was a great battle!” Ash said as he offered a handshake. On the ground, Max knelt with his knees and feet in the soil, and turned his head sharply away as more tears continued to empty themselves out of Max’s eyes.

    “Ash, what are you talking about? That was a terrible battle!” the young trainer spat. “After all I promised you that I would beat you one day, and now that day is today, and I barely laid a scratch on you at all! You didn’t even have to send out Pikachu!”

    “Hey, Max. Don’t be so hard on yourself,” Ash recoiled slightly and Pikachu seemed taken by the back-handed compliment, but Ash’s hand was still outstretched for Max to accept. “Winning is not what a trainer needs to think about first on the battlefield.”

    Pikachu on Ash’s shoulder tried to console Max the same, “Pika, pikachu!”

    “I know that, but I thought I’d win because I knew all of your battle strategies!” Max still kept his head down to prevent Ash from seeing his reddened eyes. “I mean, I travelled with you for two years year through two regions! I thought I might actually be a challenge for you!”

    Ash then dropped his knees to the ground and knelt in front of Max which prompted him to look up.

    “You know, as soon as I heard you say that back after the Terracotta Contest, I’ve been changing my strategies up a bit,” Ash said with a hint of playfulness, putting his extended arm onto Max’s shoulder.

    “Wha—what?” Max’s face turned from defeat to instant shock. “You mean you’ve been planning this the whole time?”

    “In a way, yeah. Ever since you’ve said that to me I’ve been thinking a lot,” Ash’s smile grew ever larger as he replied. “I knew that you’d figure out a way to counter every strategy I had by the time you challenged me, so I went ahead and added the strategies I learned in Sinnoh to my playbook.”

    Max wiped the tears from his eyes now that he knew why Ash was barely affected by his own counter-strategies. But it still didn’t add up.

    “Wait, then why did I lose? I’ve fought a bunch of trainers and they’ve all used different styles and I could counter those perfectly fine! Why are you so different?”

    Ash withdrew his hand that was on Max’s shoulder and stood up profoundly and said, “Come. I’ll show you!”

    “Wait, really? Right now?” Now the sad face that was on Max was instantly re-written with sheer excitement and he leapt up off of the ground.

    “Sure! But first, great battle right?” Ash replied. He re-extended his arm and held out his hand.

    “Deal!” Max smiled with determination and firmly gripped Ash’s hand. The whole stadium noise seemed to melt away, leaving the two of them alone. “So what do I have to do first?”

    “That’s easy!” Ash replied. “Wake up”

    That was a surprise.

    “Huh? Wait, wake up? I am awake!” Max stated.

    “Max, wake up,” Ash said with a louder voice.

    Is Ash playing games with me or what? He thought.

    Max raised his voice as well, “I am awake!”

    “Max, wake up!” Ash shouted. His figure seemed to lose focus and become foggy.

    “I am awake!” Max shouted back.

    “Max get out of bed or I’m going personally get you out! And could you please let go of my hand?” a different, more masculine voice sounded.

    “Wait, wait, bed? Hand?” Max dumbly murmured. In an even more lethargic voice, he asked aloud, “Dad?”

    Max realized that the entire stadium had gone, Ash had been replaced by his dad, and that the Normal Type Gym Leader was kneeling on the floor in front of his son’s bed, fully dressed for the day to begin. His face seemed undecided whether to laugh from comedy or awkwardness.

    “Geez, Max! You’ve overslept much longer than usual! It’s nearly nine thirty! Come on, get up!” Norman ranted. “And could you let go of my hand for the second time, please?”

    “Oh, sorry, Dad…” Max finally let go of his dad’s hand and they both rubbed theirs of their discomfort. “I guess it was just a dream.”

    [09:23 A.M.] Petalburg City (Gym Living Quarters), Hoenn Region

    Max looked out with his real eyes and saw his room just as it was before he fell asleep the night before. He saw his twin bed with different Pokémon embossed on his sheets, a small desk off to his right with a lamplight and drawing materials, a bookshelf on his left crammed full with Pokémon novels, manga, encyclopedias, and now his dad above him beckoning him to get out of bed.

    “Well, come on, Mom’s already made us breakfast and everything. We don’t want to be late for the first challenger!”

    “Yes! I knew today was the day that I could referee your match!” Max practically exploded out of his sheets and leapt up out of his bed. “That’s why I had that dream! Thanks dad!”

    “Of course kiddo!” Norman stood up and faced his only son with a Gym Leader’s grin. “You’ve been practically counting down the hours since I told you!”

    Max eyed his father and could barely contain his excitement as he jittered, “Yeah, I’m so glad the wait is over! Pokémon Master, here I come!”

    “You’ll get there someday,” Norman just shook his head as he started toward Max’s bedroom door. “But first, I need some of your mom’s cooking, otherwise I’ll be at a severe strategic disadvantage when that challenger gets here. Come down as soon as you get dressed.”

    “Ya don’t have to tell me twice!” Again, nearly flying across the room with energy, he threw off his dark green night clothes against the wall to the wash basket.

    Norman continued towards the door, but he eyed something nailed to the door. It was a calendar with X’s marking off the days until a particular day, the 30th of the same month the page was turned to. Max’s birthdate is on the 30th, but it doesn’t say birthday there or anything. Norman thought.

    “Max, your birthday is on the 30th of this month right?” Norman asked.

    Max surprisingly had already put on a clean set of boxers, socks and shorts when he noticed his dad’s question,

    “Yeah, of course! Why ya ask?” Max called out as he raced over to his dresser and fumbled around for a spare green polo.

    “Well,” Norman began amidst the raucous of shifting clothes, “You didn’t write ‘birthday’ or ten years old or anything. It just says ‘Pokémon Journey’ in big letters.”

    “Oh. Well, I don’t really care about being ten or not,” Max slowed down with his shirt half put on. “As far as I’m concerned, I was already ten the moment I started traveling with Ash!”

    “So, I guess you don’t really care about the 30th being your birthday so much this year, huh?” Norman turned around and saw Max squirming inside his own shirt and grinned. He walked over to help out his strangled son.

    “Dad! I’m fine!” Max further squirmed in his clothes. “You don’t need to put my clothes on for me ya know! HEY!”

    Norman had already taken Max’s backwards shirt and flipped it before he could even protest.

    “Dad! I’m not five anymore, geez!” Max protested.

    “No matter how much you try to grow up Max, you’re still my son right?” Norman laughed; it wasn’t the first time this happened.

    “I guess so…” Max just hung his head in defeat and looked off to where his calendar was saying.

    Norman patted his son on the shoulder and said, “Well, come on son! You’re going to want to mark down yesterday on that calendar, right?”

    “Oh yeah!” Again, flying across the room, he snatched a marker off of his desk and sloppily X’ed off the second day on his calendar.

    “Only twenty-eight more days to go!” Max looked up to his dad a last time, “Hey, Dad?”

    Norman looked back at his son expecting some more father-son talking experience, “Yeah, what Max?”

    It didn’t come.

    “RACE YOU TO THE TABLE!” At that Max darted off downstairs in the direction of delectable scent.

    Norman stood blinking, then laughing, again fooled by his kid’s tricks.

    “Max! I’ll get you for that!” And he too darted behind the exuberant boy in the green polo, slamming the door behind him, and making the calendar on the other side knock back, a reminder of the twenty-eight days left to spend together.


    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


    Dear Readers,

    I hope this chapter portrayed Max and his dad just like the Anime did. That was a real challenge for me. Also, I hope everyone got the whole dream thing going on, so, yeah. That's what this is all about! When I first wrote this chapter, I originally titled it ‘Dream On’ by Aerosmith, as it seemed fitting at the time. Now that I’m sticking to Obscurely Pokémon thematic chapter naming, the Heart Gold and Soul Silver TCG series Rising Rivals also fit the bill quite nicely.

    As always, any rating or reviewing is always absolutely appreciated! Thanks to ALL!


    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Story Notes:

    7 years after – Max Maple is born



    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Author’s Notes:

    Uploaded, 03/24/09
    | one revision/may to appear in later chapter/dream challenge/characterize love of family |
    -further no update period
    RE: edit. 09/02/11
    original title, “Dream On”
    RE: edit. 11/01/12


    Author's note: I hope this chapter portrayed Max and his dad just like the Anime had. That was a real challenge for me. Also, I hope everyone got the whole dream thing going on, so, yeah. That's what this is all about!

    *And yes, the title was inspired by Aerosmith's "Dream On"!*

    To Vilya: You know, I feel really bad for you that you don't have a DS. YOU'RE MISSING OUT ON SO MUCH! Then again, school is really what you must focus on right now.

    To EarthBorn: You know, I'm just about to introduce May in the next chapter...finally!

    Merry Holiday Break to Everyone!
     
    Last edited: Oct 21, 2013
  13. Shadow-saur

    Shadow-saur Monkeyshipping, ftw!

    First to read XD

    Yay, Max is here :) You just made my day. Seriously. :)

    I think you mean they belonged to Ash.

    That's the only thing I noticed right now. Very descriptive and well-written. Another great chapter. :)
     
  14. EarthBorn

    EarthBorn ConVulATiON

    “Max, your birthday is on the 30th of next month right?”

    Don't you mean the same month? Norman did say that there were 28 more days to go!
    Oh, and I'm wondering how old May is at this point. I hope she's not much younger than Ash in any case.

    I didn't expect a shift in perspective, and this did seem like a filler, apart from the fact that you hinted at Ash changing his strategy and style. I'm definitely expecting Max to lose though, just like you described it. It would be bad on Ash's part to lose after so much experience, and even worse to hold back.

    Waiting for May's introduction next chapter. :D
     
  15. CyberBlaziken

    CyberBlaziken A Greater Evil

    Yea!!!New chapter
    Good chapter.
    Waiting for May.
     
  16. Hydrangea

    Hydrangea Waifu Material Staff Member Moderator

    Wow i love this story
    i hope May appears soon!
     
  17. Stage On

    Stage On Aura guardian

    Wow I just read through all 5 chapters so far and this is fantastic! The only shame is that their isn't more. The next chapter will defenilty be worth the wait whenever it's done xd
     
  18. lunarshadow

    lunarshadow Hadou Aprentice

    Chapter Six: Team Rocket

    As fate would turn out, no matter where you go, you will always find life. This can be either good or bad depending on the circumstances. Life brings innovation and luxury, education and science, movement and vibrancy. Sometimes life brings love and peace while at other times it brings tribulation and strife. Even at more other times, life just seems to throw random things out in the open just there for the hell of it. However, this particular trio of life defies all of the above adjectives. Today we find life being blasted into the Sinnoh sky for being notoriously awful at what they do; being Team Rocket.

    For what it was worth, it was a sight to see. The trio of two humans, Jessie and James, and one Pokémon, Meowth, were tumbling in the afternoon sky down to the earth at startling speeds. The surrounding landscape swept horizontally beneath them as if they were flying over a map, the sea enlarged itself as if under a zooming microscope, and underneath them the city began to show off its skyscrapers and innovative solar panel walkways in rapid succession. But with all due respect to the glorious Team Rocket, things always ended this way for them; blasting off into the sky farther than plain eyesight could ever see. Today was no different.

    [17:20 P.M.] Sunyshore City (City Outskirts | Altitude: One Thousand Meters), Sinnoh Region

    “AAAAAHHHHH!” the trio of thieves yelled at the top of their lungs.

    At roughly two hundred meters of free fall left to go, Meowth yelled out in his trademark scratchy voice yelled, “Heads up you guys, prepare for a crash landin’!”

    “Yeah, just like EVERY landing we’ve ever had!” Jessie yelled back, already bored with this routine.

    James on the other hand couldn’t help but recall, “I don’t know about that! You know, there was that one time long ago when we just ran away like a bunch of—”

    —SMASH! An impact into the trees of a courtyard cut his memory short.

    Of all hazardous places to drop into, this one was relatively nice. Roughly thirty meters parallel to the shore existed a simple concrete walkway that ran from the Pokémon Center all the way to the Sunyshore Lighthouse about three hundred meters away. Along the side of the sidewalk nearest the shoreline existed peachy perfect sand and the waves nuzzling inside it, while on the other side existed a grassy walkway littered with thick trees, and Team Rocket swinging on one of those branches. Jessie on the other hand was not in the mood for evaluating the odds and counting blessings. It wouldn’t matter if they landed in sand, snow, lava, or trees, it was always the same crashing story’s end.

    “WHY? Why is it always us? Why do we have to keep doing what we do best?”

    “Ugh… now wat might dat be, Jess?” Meowth asked, no more enthusiastic than she.

    “Failing at life...” James replied, saving Jessie the trouble of explaining.

    An audible sigh resounded from all of their mouths simultaneously as they each swung on the same branch on the same tree, the same way; Jessie and James hung by their pants, and Meowth in a similar fashion with his fur.

    Jessie Katana was the female member of the diabolically evil syndicate of three. She was the most outspoken of the group, possessed a temper that cut like a knife, and ensured that her physical appearance was unrivaled wherever she went. At twenty-one years old, she had deep blue eyes, preferred rose red lip stick, and her hair was long, violet, and coiled like a snake at its end. She wore a risqué variant of the Team Rocket Agent-W uniform that exposed her midriff, long rubber gloves, thigh-high boots, and topped it off with green orb earrings. While Team Rocket had been large part of her family history, her childhood was marked by her mother Miyamoto’s death at five years old, her accursed orphanage soon after, and a brief tenure at Kanto Pokémon Technical School as per her mother’s will before dropping out. It was not until her enlistment into Team Rocket did she meet her partners James and Meowth.

    James Koch was the male member of the notoriously bad posse of three. He had the gentlest nature within the trio, was accused of being feminine too many times to tally, but retained a liberal wealth of knowledge and an incredibly diverse skillset. Also twenty-one years old, his had aqua green eyes and kept to his mullet length blue hair. He wore the standardized Team Rocket Agent-W uniform with short sleeved rubber gloves and lightweight boots. Born from money in every sense of the word, he ran away from home to evade his family obligation to marry Jessiebelle. His tenure at Kanto Pokémon Technical School was also brief, having flunked out within a few weeks. While it was a coincidence that he and Jesse were to have graduated in the same class, it also wasn’t until enlistment and agent training in Viridian City did they meaningfully meet. His resumé was highly diverse, covering topics in literature, sports, improv theater, and encyclopedic knowledge.

    Meowth was the Scratch Cat Pokémon member of the thrice maliciously militant mess. The strategist, schemer, and dreamer of the threesome, Meowth had developed the uncanny talent of speaking English but also fell prone to feelings of love, maternity, and philosophy. Apart from his ability to communicate with humans and habitually walking upright, his most cherished possession was the shiny charm on his forehead. Continuously plagued by misfortune, Meowth had to endure abandonment, abuse, and absolute neglect for his entire life up until joining Team Rocket.

    Together this group of mishap individuals formed the Sphinx Cell of the international crime syndicate Team Rocket. Trained at the Agent level, they have participated, endeavored, and executed heists across the Kanto, Johto, Hoenn, and Sinnoh nations, evading the authorities every step of the way and furthered the cause of Team Rocket everywhere they went.

    They had dreams and aspirations. They had goals and vision. They were the best of the best. They were slated for promotion to Elite Officers. They were supposed to have it all. But as of now, it seems that this particular team had it up to their necks in failure.

    “We can’t keep going like this, you guys,” complained James. “This streak of misery is getting to me…”

    “Oh I’m sure it is, especially for you, Mr. Rich kid!” Jessie spat. “Not all of us know what it’s like to have everything served to you just right!”

    “Hey, hey! That all in the past!” James defended himself. “Besides, I gave that up a long time ago to join Team Rocket, remember Jess?”

    Meowth couldn’t help but share his sympathy. “Yeah, just like I gave up chasing dat no-good-furball-of-a-feline Meowsy to live a life of crime…”

    “And I gave up my dreams of become rich and famous and living like a queen just to be on the run from the law for the rest of my days!” Jessie admitted.

    A collective sigh issued from all three of them.

    “It’s dat brat boy’s fault!” Meowth realized to himself. His face contorted into sheer frustration. “He and dat Pikachu just keep blasting apart our mechs left and right—even if dey are electro-proof!”

    “If he wasn’t our target all the time, we would’ve gotten loads of Pokémon by now. We’ve got to beat that kid no matter what it takes!” Jessie smashed her right fist into her left hand and all the same changed her facial expression to anger and frustration.

    James pumped his fist up in team spirit. “Yeah, we’re gonna—!”

    Crack.

    “Huh? Did you guys hear something?” James asked.

    Crack.

    Meowth did. “Uh oh… I tink dat branch is going to give way!”

    “No, no, no, nonononono—NO!” Jessie squealed in helplessness as the branch continued to noisily break off.

    As if their luck couldn’t get any worse, a certain bluish blob of a Pokémon exploded out of his ball on top of the same branch and happily cheered, “WAHHH—BUFFET!”

    CRACK!

    Another ten meters the trio plummeted down to the solid ground. Jessie, James, and Meowth again simultaneously groaned while Wobbuffet still teetered on top of the three bodies as happily as a Ledyba.

    [17:51 P.M.] Sunyshore City (Pokémon Center), Sinnoh Region

    “Gliscor, oomph! Would you please contain yourself?” Ash laughed, struggling to get out of his Pokémon’s wingspan.

    Gliscor, the Fang Scorp Pokémon that had flattened herelf onto Ash still giggled herself silly, rejoicing in the never ending game she played.

    “Gli! Gli!” she gushed out as she winked and leapt up off of her trainer’s chest.

    “Alright then, guys,” Ash said as he stood up and brushed off the dust on his vest as he said, “We’ll be doing a bit of training today, so I want everyone at their best, alright?”

    Everyone responded affirmatively in every way they could convey.

    “Perfect! Since Cynthia is coming soon, we won’t have as much time to train as usual. I think it’s time for a little fun! Who’s up for a game of beach ball?”

    [18:11 P.M.] Sunyshore City (Pokémon Center), Sinnoh Region[/i]

    As a man of simplicity, Brock always knew that the best way to do things was usually the easiest. His cooking was elegant, not extravagant, and his attire was functional, not fancy. Today’s simple ten minute shower was a testament to his personal mantra. Oddly enough though, Brock wasn’t the first one out of the complimentary Pokémon Center showers.

    The Sunyshore Pokémon Center, by no means a worn down facility, had a lobby with a front desk in the center of view and several squashy armchairs for any tired trainer not intending to stick around for very long. To the right of the desk was a residential hallway with the human lounge, rooms and beds, and public facilities. To the left of the desk lay the Pokémon treatment hallway including the checkup room, resting room, emergency room, and critical room.

    Brock walked out of the shower facilities fully dressed, carrying his towel and borrowed cleaning lotions. He deposited the spent items and used towel into the waste bin and laundry bin respectively, and proceeded to the lounging area. There he found Flint sitting on the couch, completely dressed, poofing his afro with specialized combs.


    “I’ve got a question for you, Brock-o,” Flint asked as Brock was halfway down the hallway. “Why is it so that people like you and I can take showers as short as ten minutes, yet the ladies consistently must take showers anywhere between thirty and sixty minutes?”

    “Heh, I really don’t have an answer for you Flint! If I did, I might just be that much closer to understanding girls!” Brock chuckled a little at the age old question and settled himself across Flint on the couch. Brock talked and raised his hand and formed a pincer grasp about a centimeter apart. “That much closer!”

    “I hear you man, I hear you. Ever since I’ve become an elite four member, there’s just no time for socializing. You’ve gotta train a lot just to hold the title,” Flint sighed.

    “I understand, I was a Gym leader at one point, so I know what it’s like to get cut off from the outside world. Back then the only thing I could think about was my family and my job. But since the day that Ash challenged me, I’ve been able to expand my boundaries and explore what the world has to offer! And I get around to a bit more womanizing, if you know what I mean,” Brock noted.

    “I get the impression you get cut short every time you try, right?” Flint raised his eyebrow mockingly.

    “Yeah, Croagunk stabs me every time I get close to a girl!” Brock laughed. “It’s ridiculous!”

    “How about Ash and Dawn? Do they have any interests besides being trainers?” Flint inquired.

    “No way, are you kidding? Ash is a one track minded person. He’s probably still training as hard as he can right now. For as long as I’ve known him he’s never given any kind of thought to relationships besides him and his Pokémon! Dawn I’m not so sure about, though. Don’t get me wrong, the bond between her and her Pokémon is steadily growing, but I wouldn’t doubt it if Dawn sometimes thinks about that sort of thing. Both of them have really strong dreams though.”

    “That makes a lot of sense,” Flint nodded and looked off towards the female quarter of the shower facilities to check for Dawn. He sighed to himself. “I just feel trapped.”

    “What do you mean, Flint? Surely a person like you has a love life, right? I mean, come on!” Brock asked with disbelief. “I feel like girls would love to get to know someone like you!”

    “You’d think that, but it’s actually really the opposite. I’m one of the Elite Four, so I’m trapped to my job, and I have to constantly train and train for upcoming challengers. I don’t have time to ask people out to candle-lit dinners, movies, or any of that kind of stuff,” Flint responded in melancholy. “In fact, the last time I personally saw anyone else was when Cynthia told me to come look for you guys a while ago.”

    “And what about Lucian or Aaron?” Brock questioned.

    “Well first of all, all of the Elite Four members are rivals by default. Aaron is the new kid so he’s away training championship rematches to knock one of us down to the bottom rung. Lucian is either in some foreign land buying new books, reading in some obscure library in the middle of nowhere, or remotely training. It’s rare that we ever catch up!” Flint explained. “But Cynthia on the other hand, she’s a whole new person, and a lot of fun to be around.”

    “I guess you two are pretty close friends right?” Brock pressed on.

    “Yeah. I guess we are, but the thing is, I’d like more than anything to get closer to—”

    “—Hey guys! Whatcha talking about?” Dawn exploded into the conversation as if out of nowhere.

    “Gah! Dawn, geez!” Brock recoiled in shock. “Next time announce when you’re finally out of the shower!”

    “Yeah! Yo, we were getting into a deeper than ocean blue conversation here!” Flint added. “Talking about our feelings and such!”

    “I’m sorry, but I was hoping for a good second opinion! Does my hair look fine? I really can’t be sure if I’m the only one looking at it,” Dawn gushed out.

    “Dawn—?” Brock began.

    “I didn’t call Piplup out so I don’t think my hair sheens quite like when he does it, but does it look OK?” Dawn began fiddling with her hair and move nervously side to side.

    Why does this always happen… Brock thought in mental exasperation.

    “Dawn—?” Flint asked.

    “I don’t want to have to go back and do it all over again! Do I have to fix it? Can I even walk outside with this? I can’t look like a mess in front of Cynthia and Lucian! And what if I—”

    “DAWN!” Brock and Flint forcefully spoke out.

    “Yeah?” Dawn came to a screeching halt and nervously looked over at the two men sitting on the couches.

    “It looks fine!” Brock chuckled “You’ve got nothing to worry about.”

    “Ah, what a relief,” Dawn heaved a sigh and her hand clutched over her chest. Dawn did a beauty twist on the spot and let her hair fly. “Hey, I didn’t hear your opinion Flint? How does it look?”

    Flint got caught by surprise, thankful for a good change of topic, “Oh, yeah, it’s fine.”

    “Hey Flint, shouldn’t we go and wait for Lucian and Cynthia to arrive?” Brock inquired.

    “Yeah, if I know Lucian and Cynthia, they’ll be here anytime soon. Let’s get outside to Ash before they do!”

    Brock and Flint stood up out of their extremely comfortable seats and started walking towards the Pokémon Center exit. Dawn fell into step beside Flint as the automatic doors slid open and closed behind them.

    “Hey Flint?” Dawn asked as they were walking.

    “What’s up?” Flint asked back.

    “What were you two talking about before I got out of the shower?” Dawn cocked her right eyebrow, smirking slightly. “I heard you say it was getting so ‘deep’!”

    Crap, now is NOT the time for this! Flint thought.

    “Oh, uh, you know, just this and that, and totally nothing big! It was uhh—”

    “We were just talking about the fact that you girls always take the longest showers and worry about useless things,” Brock interjected, saving Flint who breathed a quick sigh of relief.

    “Useless things?” Dawn asked, completely befuddled. “Like what?”

    Both Brock and Flint started cracking up and said in unison, “Your hair of course!”

    Dawn felt a third degree burn after that.

    [09:39 A.M.] Petalburg City (Gym Living Quarters), Hoenn Region

    The air inside of the kitchen was almost toxic—toxic in the best of possible ways. Aromas of superb scrambled eggs laced with spices floated throughout the air, poisoning those who couldn’t have a taste of it. Sausages sizzled on the frying pan, bubbling and writhing in oil, ready to be fallen in love with at first smell. And yes, freshly flopped pancakes wafted in and around the two noses of Max and his father Norman. Caroline, Max’s mother and Norman’s wife, was busy like a factory worker, producing copious amounts of food for both seated at the table.

    “Geez! I’ve said this before, time and time again,” she loudly announced while flipping the pancake pan. “CHEW WITH YOUR MOUTH CLOSED!”

    Who could blame her? The only sound other than the sounds of scrambled eggs cooking, sausages sizzling, and pancakes pancaking was ‘OMNOMNOMNOM’! ‘OMNOMNOMNOM’!

    “Foo forry, honee! I jhuph haph too feeneesh fiss beefoor Maaph!” Norman tried to apologize but the only thing that came out of his mouth was garbled gibberish.

    “Yaaa, forry mom!” Max also tried to apologize, but similarly, his apology was just as indistinguishable.

    Back in the kitchen, Caroline just shook her head and smiled. It may have been pointless to argue, but it was still humorous. Just as she was about to reprimand the two males for talking with their mouths open, a familiar loud tone rang throughout the kitchen.

    RINGRINGRING!!! PHONECALLPHONECALL!!!

    “Hey, Norman! Honey! I’m going to pick up the phone, so if you want any more eggs you’ll have to scramble them yourself!” Caroline called out to her husband.

    Still ever stuffed, he replied, “Fure! Whaever honee!”

    At that, Caroline hastily turned down the heat on the scrambled eggs, pancake, and sausage pan to prevent them from burning, and rushed over to the videophone in the family living room.

    This is unexpected. I wonder who it could be! She thought as she rushed to catch the phone. I sure hope it’s not that stupid gym inspection authority or whatever! They’ve been here already four times only to go back with a squeaky clean report! I swear if it’s them, I’ll personally—Oh! Well, that’s odd.

    Instead of the caller ID stating the Pokémon League Gym Authority Bureau, Hoenn branch number, it displayed another number, and underneath in smaller print read Cianwood Island Pokémon Center.

    What in the world would the Cianwood Pokémon Center call me for? Hey, maybe it’s her! Maybe she’s finished with one of her little contests!

    “Hello?” Caroline picked up the green receiver and spoke. “Oh my gosh! It’s so great to see you, dear! I was wondering where you were and…”

    Caroline gasped and brought her hand close to her mouth as she saw what was on her screen.

    “Oh my goodness! May!”

    Caroline’s thirteen year old daughter, with her respective receiver in her right hand up to her ear, was nothing more than a pitiful sight. Her eyes had become swollen and blood shot, and traces of glazed tears showed on her cheeks.

    “Hey, mom…” May uttered in a broken voice.


    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


    Dear Readers,

    As it turns out, Jesse, James, and Meowth actually have very rich histories respectively. On the subject of money, James had it, Meowth didn’t, and Jesse had it then lost it. On the subject of friends, none of them grew up with anybody deserving the title. Jesse never truly knew love, James ran away from it, and Meowth is broken by it. Were it not for the fifth generation anime, I probably would’ve NEVER seen past the comedy and have a close look into their psyche. Now I’ve been given the opportunity.

    Apparently Jesse has a mother named Miyamoto according to the canonical Radio Drama in Japan. I’ve tried to get a hold of those recordings or a transcript but it’s impossible. Jesse is named Musashi in the Japanese Anime and it turns out Miyamoto Musashi is the name of a famous Japanese swordsman from the 17th century who became famous by dueling many warriors and participating in a war between the Toyotomi and Tokugawa clans on the Toyotomi side. Thus, her last name should be Katana, which is a kind of sword in Japanese.

    As for James, Koch is the last name of the fourth and fifth wealthiest individuals in the world and heads of Koch Industries, producers of asphalt, chemicals, commodities trading, energy, fibers, fertilizers, finance, minerals, natural gas, plastics, petroleum, pulp and paper, ranching. Thank the lord for Forbes magazine, Google, and Wikipedia. On the other hand, James never cared much for his family’s desires so I could see James developing a name for himself or abandoning it entirely.

    It turns out there is a canonical contradiction. In the original season, Jesse and James said that they met up at Pokémon Technical as students before joining Team Rocket. According to the more recent Pokémon Chronicles series, Jesse didn’t meet James until agent training. I reconciled this by saying that they both were at Tech, but never really met. I decided though that true to the humorous spirit of everyone’s favorite villains, their initials are both JK, an acronym for ‘just kidding’!

    Meowth is Meowth. Poor Meowth.

    Yeah, I realized that Piplup is definitely a he. When I first wrote this chapter, I was only watching subtitled Japanese episodes of the Sinnoh saga and completely ignored the English dubs. At the time I especially hated the voice actors (less now) so I did everything I could to avoid them. The problem is that Japanese voice actors can sound wildly neutral-gendered, like girls playing boys or boys playing girls with high fidelity. I thought Piplup, or Pochama as he was called in the Japanese show was a girl. One quick look on Bulbapedia and a YouTube clip and I was wrong. Whoops!


    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


    Story Notes:

    5 years ago – Jessie Katana is born
    5 years ago – James Koch is born
    0 years after – Miyamoto is killed, Jesse is orphaned


    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


    Author’s Notes:

    Uploaded, 06/24/09
    | massive update period difference/unsure plot at time of writ/difficulty writing/introduce may |
    original title, “Realization”
    -terrible update time disparity
    RE: edit. 09/02/11
    RE: edit. 03/16/12
    | decided on Team Rocket timeline/introduced last names |
    second original title, “Overcoming Obstacles”
    RE: edit. 11/02/12


    Author's note: I really haven't been working much on this project in recent days due to school really consuming my life for the better, but I hope this chapter will mark the start of a string of good chapters!

    To Shadow-saur: Heh, I'm really really glad you liked it! Plus it WAS a filler regardless.

    To EarthBorn/CyberBlaziken/shaymin_girl: MAY IS HERE!!! For about three sentences...

    To Tsubasa no Tenshi: Hey, thanks for the great compliments! I hope the wait was well worth it for you!
     
    Last edited: Oct 21, 2013
  19. Midnightmoon6o2

    Midnightmoon6o2 "Tougher than you."

    Nice chapter overall. now to my newest question to myself.

    "What happened to May?"

    Can't wait for the next chapter. ^^
     
  20. EarthBorn

    EarthBorn ConVulATiON

    Ooh, goodies chapter. It's been a while, but I'm not one to complain. :D

    Brock and Flint's conversation was gold, especially the part where Dawn comes out asking about her hair. I guess Flint's got a point there...being in the E4 and all - mind if I borrow that argument for future use? ;)

    Poor May.

    Why's she sad? Is it because she lost a contest? Is it because of WHO she lost the contest TO?

    Why does this seem to remind me of some random coordinator with green hair, eyes...:p

    Keep up the good work anyways.
     

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