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Fanfiction Coltar: Escaping His Shadows [Complete]

Discussion in 'Literature Library' started by Cavespider_17, Jan 11, 2024.

  1. Cavespider_17

    Giratina Egg
    (Giratina Egg)
    Level 2
    Oct 23, 2023
    Trainer Card - Cave Theme
    Aaron Piscar, youngest son of Ellio Piscar, ruler of Elktan, is desperate to celebrate the End of Cycle. However, his father isn't so keen. In fact, his father has effectively forbidden him from leaving the citadel as he is worried his son will be attacked. Aaron and Ellio get into a very one-sided battle, which is considered treason, and Aaron ends up running away from home with his best friends, Mylious and Clarence, with his older brother, Erik, close behind. They run away to Colran, where things seem much different, and Aaron has to confront how he feels about his father and how he rules Elktan with an iron fist.

    This story takes place in 1965, 10 years before James Spitz is even born, and 24 years before the events of Coltar the Prophecy.

    Warning: This story is rated Teen. It contains: Strong Language; Moderate Violence, such as: non-explicit examples, indications and outcomes of abuse, depictions of blood, mentions of death, depictions of threat, depictions of injury and skin branding (this world's equivalent of getting a tattoo); Moderately Mature Themes: such as: slavery, and Substance Usage: alcohol usage.

    Chapter List
    1. End of Cycle
    2. Emergency Exit
    3. Train Confrontation
    4. A Colran Dawn
    5. The Man From Across the Border
    6. Through and Through
    7. To Virto
    8. Celebrations
    9 The Differences Between
    10. Glimpse Into Reality
    11. Who We Are
    12. Visionary and Virtues

    End of Cycle

    Friday, 31st December, 1965

    It was a long way down if one were to fall, but that didn’t stop Aaron from sitting on the edge of the highest point of the Elkran Citadel. His fingers felt frozen, even though he had bandaged them under his dubwool thick gloves. His ears had been tightly tucked under his fluffy dubwool hat, but his green braided hair stuck along the left side and brushed down his icy pale skin. His feet dangled down and blew in the strong Elkran winds. All he wanted to do was jump and fly away. However, he knew that wouldn’t happen.

    Aaron’s father, Lord Elite Ellio Piscar, grounded his salamence following an incident involving setting his brother Erik’s bedsheets on fire. Naturally, Aaron denied it. He looked down at the other young Lords and Ladies leaving the citadel for the new year’s break. Most would come back looking completely different. Some have piercings or skin markings to celebrate their turning 15 and beginning their first year in the high school section of the citadel. But not him. He groaned and undid his tie. He stared at the blue mareep cotton with the little tab pattern in one corner. It was light blue. The colour of the house of Piscar. His father’s house. Of course, Aaron knew he could have been sorted into the house of the Lord interrogator or Lord Captain, but at the time, he was stuffed into his father’s house.

    He stretched his legs, stood up, and held tightly onto the pole, waving the blue and purple crossed swords of the Elktan flag. He watched as a crobat passed by, too far away to tell its gender, he watched its four blue and purple spindly wings flap and wrap around its purple egg-shaped body. Its fangs seemed larger than its narrow eyes. Ugly pokémon, he thought as he lowered himself and hung on for dear life as he dropped inside the tower's arch-shaped window and into the pilots' dorm.

    “Hey,” a boy with long blue hair said, jumping back.

    “Sorry, Clarence. I didn’t mean to frighten you. I was just… thinking. Was that… Kilgorese?” Aaron shuffled his feet and knocked the snow which had built up on his black tauros skin boots onto the floor.

    “Yeah, I’ve been trying to learn it. It’s too hard. Forty-five letters are way too many to remember. I don’t get how Mylious does it. Hard ‘R’ is tough in Elkrat as it is. No one except for Von Recht has a hard ‘R’ in their name, or at least no one important. Remembering to pronounce it all the time is so annoying,” Clarence said with a scowl, staggering over the “R” sound.

    “I don’t get why they need sixteen more letters than us; it doesn’t make them special.” Aaron grimaced. “So glad I never took that subject. Colrat is hard enough. Every time I read out loud, I always say their ‘J’ as ‘H’. Dumb letter, and I never know what to say when I see an ‘H’. I did so badly in the end-of-year test because of it. My dad got so mad at me. He won’t let me go to town to celebrate.”

    “Oh well, I was wondering if you wanted to come to the city centre with me today. I can’t go home, and well… Mylious doesn’t have a home, since you know... So, do you want to sneak out and celebrate together? Come on, Aaron, it will be fun,” Clarence pleaded, flicking his hair back.

    Aaron went to reply, but the door into the tower swung open, and he closed his mouth tight. His eyes collided with Lord Von Recht. An uncomfortable feeling brewed inside of him quickly enough to make him feel the urge to vomit. However, Aaron took a deep breath and knelt on his right knee before the Lord. He placed his closed fist above the left side of his chest and lowered his head. The Lord waved his hand, and Aaron straightened himself up again and walked past him with Clarence.

    “I don’t know. My dad just… all he cares about is Elktan… no, himself,” Aaron said. The stairs wound around until they reached a long corridor which led into the large hall. Aaron peered inside to see his father sitting on his golden throne. His legs were crossed, and he was being served roasted meat while Colran and Elktan slaves danced for him and served him.

    “Aaron?” Clarence said, as he turned to see Aaron scowling.

    “He treats people worse than pokémon,” Aaron said, tightening his fists. “When Erik rules, it will be different. I will be his Lord Captain and make sure of it.” He saw the other students, young Lords, and Ladies sitting at the tables enjoying the buffet. “I am so glad I never grew up experiencing that life. It is so unfair.”

    “T-t-that’s j-just life…” a timid voice said.

    “Mylious!” Aaron shouted and jumped onto his tall friend.

    Mylious shrugged him off and peered down from his enormous stature. He walked over to the table with his back to his friends before slumping by the small water fountain at the end. Please don’t touch me, Mylious thought, unable to muster the energy to say how he felt.

    “What’s wrong?” Clarence asked and sat down beside Mylious.

    “I-I was just thinking,” Mylious whispered, looking down at his hands. “M-my hands are still… b-bloodied. I h-have no f-family l-left here.” He sniffled a little and tugged on his short black hair. His grey eyes were red from his tears. “Oh… um A-Aaron… h-here.” Mylious reached into his blue jacket’s pocket, pulled out a poké ball, and placed it in his friend’s hand. “I h-helped heal her. S-she should b-be ready to b-battle soon.”

    “Thanks, Mylious.” Aaron stared at his dad and then at the table as the lunch bell rang through the citadel. “My dad is the worst!” He peered into the poké ball at the grey rock-ground. Her horn had been chipped, and each boulder constructing her snake-like body had deep scratches carved into her. Her smallest boulder at the end of her body was chipped off. Aaron turned back to Mylious, and looked into his sad eyes. Poor Mylious. I can’t imagine what it would have been like being born a slave and having to kill to escape. Despite everything, he still goes the extra mile for me, and never complains when I rage about my life.

    “Did you have a nightmare about it?” Clarence asked, placing his hand on Mylious’s shoulder. “You should go to the med bay. They’ll help.”

    “I always h-have nightmares about it. I… I was five y-years old. It is v-very hazy. T-the worst one is s-seeing my b-big sister lying there… a-after being experimented on… and n-not moving.” Mylious shuffled a little as he felt Aaron squeeze his arm. He turned to face the Lords table at the top of the room. Behind them was a painting of what giratina was rumoured to look like. Mylious shuddered at the sight of its long black wings, with red teeth spiking out. Its large grey body was twisted and had large claws and teeth sticking out. Its large yellow head dwarfed its tiny red eyes. Ruler of the distortion world, hear my prayer, please let my nightmares end soon, Mylious thought.

    Ellio Piscar stood up from his seat on his throne and walked to the microphone. His long black hair was platted back, and his green eyes shone in the flickering chandelure light. Each one of the chandelure’s purple flames flickered on the end of his ghostly black frame. His opaque head glowed purple, and his yellow eyes flickered soullessly. The Lords behind Ellio grinned as their faces were lit up by the purple light, excited for what he had to say.

    “Damn, what a lineup this year for his advisors,” Clarence said. “Isn’t that?”

    “Yeah, that’s Lord Captain Jun-Seo. I thought he was in Munta for the holidays,” Aaron replied, looking up at the tall, black, brown-haired Lord sitting beside the throne. A blindfold covered his eyes, leaving an uncomfortable tingling sensation in Aaron’s stomach.

    Clarence continued to look at the Lords. I didn’t expect Von Recht to be the Lord Interrogator this year. The guy is such a twat. He rips into Mylious whenever he gets a chance. There is Lord Smith, the Reynaldo twins... damn it’s a real mixture. Holy tauros shit, Lady Qu is on the council?

    “Excuse me, can I sit next to you?”

    Clarence turned to see Lady Qu’s daughter, Hélena, talking to Aaron. Like, please say yes, Aaron. I’ve been crushing on her since I was 10. He saw her brown braided hair pulled back behind her pale face. Her eyes were as bright as his, and her uniform was too big for her.

    “Oh, um, sure! My name is Aaron. Aaron Piscar,” Aaron said, bowing a little and offering her a seat. I can’t believe she spoke to me. She’s older than me, a high schooler. She looks so lovely. He blushed a little.

    “I know who you are. You are the Lord Elite’s son and Erik’s brother,” she said and sat down.

    “Aaron, will you be quiet!” Ellio Piscar shouted out, and the hall fell silent.

    Aaron glanced around, realised he was the only person still standing up and looked at his dad and then back down at the seat.

    “200 points are taken from the house of Piscar, and you will all do 50 push-ups,” Lord Captain Jun-Seo said without skipping a beat. He picked up a bottle of dritze, made from chillan berries, and poured it into his glass. A loud groan echoed throughout the hall, and without skipping a second beat he added, “I can make it 400 points and 400 push-ups if you want. I can also cancel the feast and the celebrations in town.”

    “Fuck off you old crobat!” Aaron shouted.

    “Aaron Ellio Piscar! You will not disrespect the Lord Captain! Apologise!” Ellio Piscar scowled, and twitched his moustache.

    “Why should I? Won’t change the fact I can’t go!” Aaron shouted back, slamming his fists on the table.

    “Aaron, that is enough!” Ellio Piscar said, he took out a poké ball and sent out his exploud, and raised the normal stone up. The exploud opened her large mouth, revealing her flat, molar-like teeth. Her red eyes narrowed and she stared at Aaron. Her lavender-purple skin vibrated as the roar exited her mouth. “You are acting like a runt, and not my son!” The exploud’s yellow protruding tubes rumbled on her forehead as the crest let out a high-pitched whistle, and the two tubes on her back gulped in air.

    Aaron started to squirm as his head started to ache. He could hear the sound of the exploud screaming through his ears and into his head. He grabbed his ears and fell onto his knees. Out of the corner of his eyes he could see the three clawed toes of the exploud inch closer and closer.

    “S-stop it! You are h-hurting him!” Mylious shouted and quivered as he jumped onto his feet, stood in front of Aaron and drew his sword. Beside him, Clarence leapt up onto his feet too, rushed over to Aaron, and offered him a hand.

    “Control your cronies, Aaron. Or I will for you,” Ellio Piscar said.

    “You are a bastard! I hate you! I challenge you to a battle, my Lord!” Aaron spat on the floor and raised his poké ball to his lip, ready to fight.

    “That is enough!” Ellio twitched at Aaron’s words, and from his throne, Ellio Piscar stood up and walked down the stairs. He raised a poké ball to his chest.

    “Aaron, I am your father and ruler! You will show me some respect!” Ellio Piscar stared into his son’s eyes and took a deep breath.

    “You hurt my onix! You won’t let me celebrate! You are the worst!” Aaron shouted back. He stepped forward and tossed his poké ball onto the wooden floor. The sturdy slats creaked under the weight of his samurott as he swung his sharpened brown shell-like blade on top of his head around and narrowly avoided knocking the largest chandelure out. Aaron observed as his father kissed his poké ball and tossed it forward. The angle it was thrown allowed it to bounce back up to him, and he caught it in his hand as the spiritomb swirled around in front of him.

    “Great job on convincing me you are mature enough to not forsake your duties.” Ellio Piscar scowled down at Aaron.

    “Aqua Jet.” Aaron pointed at the spiritomb. Aaron’s samurott gurgled water in his mouth, and water surged around his blue flippers. He shot forward on his light blue belly with the blade on top of his head down. The spiritomb’s purple and green spotted spherical mass floated and swirled around the small brown keystone he had poured out of and let out a ghostly cry, filling the room with a gasp. His zig-zag mouth, which was now off-centre in the mass, widened as he cackled.

    “Dodge it and return a dark pulse.” Ellio Piscar grabbed his knife and rushed at his son.

    The hall fell into complete darkness, and a loud ringing filled the room. The students whispered in a panic. A few screams broke the whispers, followed by three explosions of a black puff of smoke, and a thud followed quickly.

    Aaron fell onto his back and held his right arm. His father’s knife still dripped with his blood as he pressed it against Aaron’s chest. Aaron shuffled back until his back pressed against the wall, and he glared into his father’s eyes as the smoke cleared. He looked back at his samurott slumped against the wall.

    “Fuck!” Aaron said, as tears fell down his eyes. No… he wiped me out in one move?

    “Throw my son in jail. He will learn he cannot attack me. If he doesn’t learn his lesson, I suggest we take some drastic measures, don’t you, Von Recht?” Ellio Piscar smirked as two large Lords in full Guard uniforms grabbed Aaron by his arms and dragged him along the floor toward the door.

    “Yes, my Lord Elite, I would be more than happy to teach the boy a lesson,” Lord Von Recht replied, a giant smirk across his face. “Stick him in the Tauch. That will teach him a lesson.”

    Not the Tauch. That’s so bad, Mylious thought as he watched Aaron get dragged away. Lord Jun-Seo might bail him out. He’s a good guy. He helped me settle down when I first came here. Mylious jumped up and grabbed Clarence’s arm and dragged him out of the hall.

    “Don’t you think that was a little harsh?” Lord Captain Jun-Seo said, slushing around the yellow liquid in his glass.

    Lord Elite Piscar sat down and glanced over at his Lord Captain before saying, “I don’t know what to do with him anymore. He used to be so…”

    “Calm? So, calculated? Your son is a tactician, but he is also a teenager. Ellio, he isn’t like you at all. I can tell in his voice.” The Lord Captain reached over and refilled his glass before adding, “Any psychic will tell you he will achieve great things and be a great leader someday. I have seen it in my dreams.”

    “What I would give to have psychic powers. It isn’t common. You have it, a few of the Lords have it, a few citizens, that Bourbabel kid has it, and what is scariest of all is De Jou has it. Why couldn’t my bloodline have been exposed to the Great Shadowing?” Ellio Piscar looked over at the students, who silently sat up patiently. “Von Recht, can you speak for me?”

    “Of course, my Lord, if it pleases you. As for your son… I say punishing his so-called friends would snap him into line. It works with prisoners; it should work with that brat.” Lord Von Recht got up and moved to the microphone.

    Lord Jun-Seo coughed and under his breath said, “No wonder his kids have all died. If you want my advice Ellio, and I assume you do since you haven’t stormed off like your son would have, go talk to Aaron. Aaron’s friends are very loyal to him. In fact they are probably trying to break into my office right now to rescue him. I should probably intervene.”

    Ellio Piscar said, “You are right. I was far too harsh on him. He doesn’t understand the world right now. He is only 14. Erik on the other hand... 17 but acts like he is 25.”

    “I have an idea, of course you will have to trust me… but I think this will be good for Aaron, and for you. It will be dangerous. You could die,” Lord Jun-Seo said with a smile across his face. He reached for his bottle once more.

    “You are only here to please giratina once.” Ellio Piscar smiled back.

    “Damn, I am all out of dritze,” Lord Jun-Seo remarked, as he shook the empty bottle. “I will set things in motion,” he muttered under his breath.
    #1 Jan 11, 2024
    Last edited: Jun 26, 2024
  2. Cavespider_17

    Giratina Egg
    (Giratina Egg)
    Level 2
    Oct 23, 2023
    Trainer Card - Cave Theme

    Emergency Exit

    Saturday, 1st January, 1966

    Clarence wobbled along under Mylious’s strong pull but decided it was best not to say anything immediately. He trusted Mylious, and the night was still very young. As they walked through the overused central corridor, the stone slabs under his feet were wonkier than before. They slipped down the main stairs, which, if travelled far enough, would lead to the Lord’s offices, the stables, the viaduct and the dungeon underneath the main castle.

    “Mylious, where are we going?” Clarence asked, placed his hand on Mylious’s hand and peeled it off of his arm.

    “L-Lord J-Jun-Seo’s off-office. H-He can h-help Aa-Aa’on,” Mylious stuttered.

    “Mylious, what did I say about stuttering?” a voice rang out from down the corridor behind them. A tall black man with burning white eyes walked up to them. With each step, his cane tapped along the ground, and his stoutland plodded beside him.

    “T-T…” Mylious started.

    “How the in the flying fuck did you get here before us?” Clarence blurted out.

    “Mylious, breathe in and breathe out. Breathe in, and breathe out. Think what you want to say, and slowly…” the Lord said, ignoring Clarence and placing his scarred hand on Mylious’s shoulder.

    “To try and s-s… stay calm and not be s-scared,” Mylious squeezed out his mouth. His hands were pressed together, and his left hand stroked his right hand in a desperate bid to comfort himself. “My Lord,” Mylious added on quickly.

    “Don’t bother bowing. Just tell me why you are down this corridor, which you know damn well is off limits to young Lords,” the Lord said, as he took a key out of his pocket and wandered down a little further past the two teens. “Come.” He pressed his key into the door and turned it, opening the wooden ornate door into his large room.

    Clarence followed him inside and glanced around the room. The blue curtains hung over a large window. He couldn’t help but stare out to the courtyard overlooking the city. The stained panels painted each section a different colour. He saw the festivities below; the fire spitters, the ice skaters and the mamoswine riders were all out in force.

    Lord Jun-Seo walked over to the window and opened it, letting the snow slide in momentarily. His white squawkabilly blended in as he tied a small letter to her and waved her on. With a bit of squawk, she shot off into the blizzard.

    “Aa’on is in trouble, and I was wondering if you could h-h… rescue him from the Tauch,” Mylious asked. He took a deep breath out and looked into the Lord’s eyes. “Lord Jun-Seo, please.”

    “I cannot help him,” Lord Jun-Seo said as he placed a long-rusted key ring on his desk. “Aa’on needs to understand his place.”

    Clarence watched as Lord Captain Jun-Seo limped over to the sharpedo tank at the end of his room and thought, He keeps fighting, even now. He reached over the desk, picked up the keys, slid them quietly into his pocket, and turned to leave.

    “S-sir, is it true? You really did fight Lord Elite De Jou?” Mylious asked, his eyes widened as he stared at the back of the Lord Captain.

    “It is true. He blinded me with his torkoal, and took my leg. He refused to kill me, though. I was Lord Elite Hamilton’s Lord Captain. He respected me. Alas, Lord Elite Piscar took over after his death. A blind man doesn’t belong as a Lord, for he is defective beyond all measure,” Lord Captain Jun Seo said with sadness. His sharpedo looked at him, snuffled with its pointed nose and wiggled its fins. Its blue body shot out small streaks of black as it waited with anticipation for the next piece of meat to drop into the tank. Lord Jun-Seo breathed deeply and dropped the meat into his sharpedo’s tank before limping to his liquor cabinet. He took out a large bottle of dritze and uncorked it. Without the consideration to fetch a glass, he guzzled from the bottle before saying, “You boys understand that under no circumstances should you leave the citadel. Right?”

    “Yes, sir,” Clarence replied.

    “S-sir!” Mylious replied.

    “Have a good evening,” Lord Jun-Seo said. He had drawn the word evening out longer than either teen had felt comfortable listening to it. He pointed his cane at the door from his seat, and the door slowly swung open, letting out a crying creak.

    Clarence placed his hand on Mylious’s shoulder, and without another word, the two teenagers left the room and shut the door. Clarence looked from side to side before hurried down the corridor away from the Lord Captain’s office. The stone corridor seemed to narrow the further into the castle they got. At the end of the corridor stood the grand tapestry of every Lord who had ever been from Elktan. It stretched 10 metres across and stood 3 metres tall. Clarence reached out and touched the soft dubwool cotton.

    “Just think, in 10 years, we will be on here,” Clarence whispered. “So, Lord Captain Jun-Seo has been helping you with your stutter? That’s brilliant!”

    “Be quiet, Cla’ence. I-I find some s-sounds hard still,” Mylious said as he pressed down on one of the stone bricks. A clunk followed, and the soft sound of gears whirring away filled his ears. The bricks slowly dropped down, revealing a narrow tunnel. “C-come.”

    “I guess Lord Jun-Seo knows about the secret passages too,” Clarence mused, nudging Mylious. He glanced up and saw the large galvantula webs that had twisted through the corridor.

    “I feel like a f-freak. I am 6ft 7 and only 15. I am t-taller than most of the L-Lords. All I w-want this festival is t-to n-not feel like a f-freak,” Mylious sniffled. “H-here…” he said, pushing against a small dial at the end of the narrow passageway. “Oh, h-hello Zvi- Zvi-…” Mylious paused and took a deep breath. “Zvisht,” he forced out. A small joltik dropped down from a web with the help of a large galvantula and landed on his hat.

    “Wait, you know this joltik?” Clarence asked, and Mylious nodded back.

    “She is m-my friend. W-when I get s-stuck, s-she comes and h-helps me.” Mylious stroked her head, and she let out tiny sparks.

    “I see,” Clarence said.

    Mylious pushed the bricks as hard as he could and opened the doorway into a boiling-hot room. His vision blurred from the red-stained air rising from the pit below. Above the pit, he saw Aaron. The metal pole he had been chained to was rusted and scorched by the fire below.

    “Zvisht, can you unchain Aa’on, please?” Mylious asked, and the little joltik jumped up and down. Mylious turned to Clarence and gestured for the key.

    I hate this place, Clarence thought. He reached into his pocket and pulled the key off of its ring. The rusted key squeaked a little as it came loose but fell into his hand. The metal started heating up quickly in the hot room, and Clarence passed the key over to the little yellow fluff.

    The joltik, key in mouth, pounced up onto the wall. Her sticky web coated her tiny blue feet as she crawled along the wall’s warm metal edges. She looked down at Mylious and lifted one leg to wave at him before pouncing up onto the metal bar from which Aaron was hanging. Slowly but surely, she made her way along the rolling metal bar across the boiling pit, peering down to see the camerupt spewing its fire. She hurried faster until she reached Aaron.

    “Hey, you want to help me out, huh?” Aaron gasped. His forehead was covered in sweat, and his skin was marked where the iron chains held him in place.

    The little joltik nodded and stabbed the key into the lock of the chains. With her little legs, she turned the key until the shackles broke and fell into the pit below. She spat a sticky web at Aaron’s arm so he could grab onto the metal bar without losing grip. The ooze made him feel sick, but he had no choice. Pull by pull, he reached the other side and dropped onto the metal flooring.

    “Thanks,” Aaron said, and the little joltik bounced up and down on his shoulder before leaping onto Mylious’s hat. “Huh?” The door to the Tauch swung open. Aaron turned to see his older brother enter the boiling-hot room.

    “Aa’on, come on. You can’t just break out. Dad will be even more pissed off,” Erik Piscar said. His black hair stood on end, spiked at the front, with his braids running down the side of his pale face. A small stitched-up scar rested on his cheek. He limped over to Aaron and grinned.

    “Still limping, I see,” Clarence said with a smirk. “What was it you said to me? Oh, right, I bet I could beat you in a pokémon battle with my eyes closed.”

    “And then you kneed him in the balls when he closed his eyes,” Aaron giggled and picked up his poké balls that had been stuffed onto the siding.

    Mylious snorted and quickly covered his mouth with his hand.

    “Shut it, you filthy farmer!” Erik barked at Clarence. “As for you, slave boy, I can’t wait for Dad’s new laws to come into place. People like you will stay in the gutter.”

    Aaron paused and stared into his brother’s cold green eyes before saying, “What new laws?”

    “Dad is making it so more of the lower class end up in servitude or lower,” Erik said, smirking. “Not a bad idea.”

    “What is wrong with you? These people have done nothing wrong except being unable to pay the taxes he hiked up. What would mum say?!” Aaron shouted, fists clenched and ready to whip out his poké balls.

    “Lady Pisca’ isn’t here. Remember? Anyway, it is time to go, Aa’on.” Erik grabbed his sword, reached out, and pointed it at Aaron’s chest.

    “You are right. It is time to go.” Aaron swivelled on his heels and ran at Erik. “Let’s go! Manal!” Aaron’s houndour jumped in front of him, Mylious and Clarence. “Do you know what happens to someone bitten by a houndoom’s fire? The pain lasts forever. Manal is a houndour, it might not last forever but it will hurt a whole fuck ton! Manal use fire fang!”

    Erik reached for his pocket to pull out his poké balls, but the little houndour leapt on him and opened his mouth. He let out a low grumbling howl and flashed his fangs. He chomped down on Erik’s arm. Erik quickly moved to knock the houndour off, but the flames had already started to pour onto his skin. Erik lowered his blade and placed his right hand against the scorching mouth of the houndour, grabbed his muzzle and attempted to swing his arm to push him off.

    Aaron lunged forward and felt Erik’s sword wobble and hit the ground with a thud as his brother’s footing was not prepared to take on the full force of him. Aaron quickly placed his hand on the wall to steady himself and jump over his brother, who had been knocked cleanly to the ground in one fell swoop. “Come on!” he called out.

    “Coming!” Clarence replied and grabbed Mylious’s sleeve. The two ran to Erik, and Clarence stepped around him. However, Erik grabbed Clarence’s leg while he yelled out in pain.

    “What the fuck?” Erik wheezed out as Mylious’s boot collided with his chest. “I’ll kill you for that, slave boy!”

    “Fucking run!” Aaron shouted as he charged down the corridor, holding his arm. He turned to see Mylious rolling down the corridor and scooping Clarence onto his back. “Criborn!”

    “Criborn?” Clarence said. “Oh, shit… Criborn.” Clarence felt himself flung over Mylious’s head and smacking himself against the floor. He looked up and saw a houndoom showing his sharp fangs at him. He heard Mylious squeak and sniffle. The growling and snarling of the houndoom that had started to drown out the sound of Mylious. The bones on the houndoom’s back rumbled with his growls.

    “What are you doing? Who let you out of the Tauch?” Lord Criborn shouted and pulled out a sharp blade.

    Alright, there is one of him and three of us. We could solo them, but that probably won’t work out. Four of us, if we include Mylious’s joltik friend. If I use my gallade, Clarence uses his gabite, and Mylious uses his blastoise, we might see tomorrow, Aaron thought. “Okay, Ka’aknook! Mylious send out Jajul, Clarence send out Cu’cu’ak! Ka’aknook use brick break!” The gallade dived out of his poké ball and charged at the large houndoom.

    The houndoom howled and lowered his curled horns. Dark smoke puffed around his mouth and leaked out.

    “Zvisht, block it with electroweb!” Mylious shouted. The little joltik bounced on his hat and fired a twisted electrically charged web at the houndoom. The houndoom looked up, and his snout was coated in silk, stopping him from opening his mouth and firing a dark pulse.

    To Aaron’s left saw Clarence’s gabite get bodied by a houndoom. The gabite let out a little gargle before slumping unconscious against the ground. The houndoom growled at them, and flames flickered from inside his mouth.

    Aaron’s gallade brought his arm down on the larger houndoom, and it staggered back down the corridor, before pouncing forward and biting down on his gallade’s arm.

    “Jajul, f-f-finish the big one with w-water pulse!” Mylious shouted; he ran to the houndoom, grabbed its horns and forcibly threw it into the wall. The water pulse swirled from his blastoise that appeared in front of him, and collided with the dazed houndoom and Lord Criborn.

    Aaron drew his sword, and with a swing of the helm, he struck the water-pulsed Lord in the face. The Lord lay on the floor, with his eyes closed and his nose bleeding.

    “He won’t stay out cold for long,” Clarence said.

    Mylious knelt beside Lord Criborn and pressed his index finger against his pulse. He closed his grey eyes and prayed. Please be alive. Okay, there it is. Thank giratina. We are in so much trouble. I really want to just hide and cry in my room, but if I go there… Lord Piscar will find me and punish me. Maybe we should just tell him the truth. Yeah, we will all be in trouble, but at least we won’t be put on trial for attempted murder or worse. His hands started to shake, and Mylious felt sick. He looked around at the spinning stone walls and reached up desperately at Aaron, who grabbed his sweat-soaked palms.

    “We need to get out of here. Find some clothes or something and like, I don’t know…” Clarence muttered.

    Aaron waved his hand and started to run down the corridor to one of the archer’s slits in the stone wall. Alright, we really need to get out of the castle. He peered out the slit and saw the blizzard blowing heavy snow around the citadel. I guess we have no choice. We have to fly out. There is a pilot’s ledge not too far from here. He waved his hand again, and with his houndour running close behind him, he darted along the corridor.

    “Aaron Ellio Piscar! How dare you disobey me!” Lord Ellio Piscar stormed up the corridor with his hand wrapped around his poké ball, ready to summon his spiritomb. “Shoot him in the leg!” he called out. By his side, two young archers pulled out short bows and drew two thin metal arrows made from the skin of a duraladon. The tips were sturdy, tiny scales dripped with a mixture concocted from a venusaur’s stun spore. They released the arrows, and they sped at Aaron.

    “Move!” Mylious shouted, and he pushed Aaron forward. The arrows both struck him in the left leg. “Agh, bastards,” Mylious wheezed.

    “Stop them!” Lord Ellio Piscar called out once more.

    Aaron stared at his best friend, who limped forward and waved his hands to continue. “Use flamethrower to block the path behind us. Come on, Mylious.” Aaron’s houndour immediately spat fire, covering the corridor with fire and smoke. Aaron rushed forward, barely able to keep his balance, until he saw the small wooden door on the side of the wall. He pushed against it, opening the door to the outside, and peered down to see the sheer drop of the mountain. This better fucking work, or we are dead as fuck. He grabbed his poké ball, returned his houndour, and snatched hold of Clarence’s jacket and Mylious’s shirt.

    “Aaron… what are you doing?” Clarence asked.

    Aaron yanked on Clarence’s jacket and Mylious’s shirt as he threw himself off the ledge. They fell toward the mountain in a tumbling and twisting blizzard. Come on…I’kaknok, he prayed.
    #2 Jan 13, 2024
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2024
  3. Cavespider_17

    Giratina Egg
    (Giratina Egg)
    Level 2
    Oct 23, 2023
    Trainer Card - Cave Theme

    Train Confrontation

    Saturday 1st January, 1966

    Aaron turned to see a dark shadow approaching from the citadel above them, diving down and revealing its twisted, long talons and light blue scales. Its moon-shaped wings captured the blizzard’s air and sliced through it like it was nothing before grabbing hold of Aaron.

    “I hate you so much,” Clarence said as he was pulled up onto the salamence’s back. He looked at Mylious, who was shaking and unable to move. Shit, he is paralysed. “Aaron, we need somewhere to hide. Or go somewhere until your dad isn’t pissed at us anymore.”

    “I know.” Aaron grabbed tightly onto his salamence and took a sharp turn back to the citadel. “Let’s just get on a train and go. Fuck my dad. I don’t care where we go, just… away from here. I can’t believe I got thrown in the Tauch.” He saw the braviary fly past him in their pack and he grinned. “Feels like us.”

    “Feels like we don’t have goggles, and I can’t see shit!” Clarence called out. “I fucking hate flying with you.”

    “Maybe if you weren’t such a baby and weren’t scared of heights…” Aaron said as the air rushed past his face and the snow smashed into his cheeks. “Hold on tight!” Aaron shouted, and the salamence swung around, diving down toward the centre square of the citadel. He extended his claws and dug in deep as he crashed into the stone-paved floor street.

    Clarence staggered off the beast’s blue scaled back and toppled to the side and a bin. He couldn’t contain the nausea of flying anymore, and he vomited into the bin. Just great. Thanks. He heard muttering from behind him and looked around to see a group of girls gathering together. In the middle of them was Hélena Qu. His eyes focused on her, and he raised his hand to wave at her.

    “Listen, um… Hélena. I was wondering if you-“ Before he could though, the nausea struck again, and he threw up on the pavement.

    “Ew. What is wrong with you? No, I won’t go to the end-of-year dance with you. I am going with Aa’on,” Hélena said. Her eyes narrowed in on Clarence like an Arbok.

    “You are?” Aaron asked.

    “You are?” gurgled Clarence.

    “Yes, I am. Aaron is cute, I mean, he has big green eyes and soft green hair, and his dad runs this place,” Hélena said, pressing her hand to her cheek.

    Nice, Aaron thought. I got myself a girlfriend.

    “Stop them!” Ellio Piscar called out.

    “Shit! Sorry, Hélena, we have to go. I think you are beautiful!” Aaron shouted as he ran, grabbing Clarence and Mylious and dragging them down an alley.

    The stone bricks closed in on them as they ran until they reached the end where the train station was located. The wooden roof was wonky but had recently been repaired, so no one could complain. A sheet of white ice froze over the glass windows, and the woman sitting in the ticket office looked as if she had a wart farm on her face.

    Yeah, no thanks. Let’s just run, Aaron thought, glancing over at her. In the distance, he could see the intercity train. Aaron, Mylious and Clarence started to sprint like they had never sprinted before, with Guards shouting and screaming at them from behind.

    The train blew its whistle and started to pull away from the station. Mylious’s heart pounded, and his leg hurt from all the running he had had to do. However, he knew he was the only one who could reach the train and pull his friends aboard. With one final deep breath, he launched himself into a sprint, ran alongside the rolycoly powered train and took a leap of faith. His arm wrapped around the pole at the end of the train, and he leaned over the edge, extending a hand out to his friends, who were running as fast as they could with a trail of Lords and police behind them.

    Aaron leapt forward and grabbed Mylious’s hand as his knees scraped along the platform, and Mylious yanked him inside. They then stuck their hands out, grabbed Clarence, and pulled him into the train’s corridor. A few coats and hats were hanging up on the coat rack, which Aaron nabbed as they brushed past.

    Quickly, they shuffled into an empty compartment, waking the litwick that was having a nap inside and taking some seats. The tauros leather seats were comfortable and blended with the wooden furnished carriage. Aaron distributed the coats and hats, and with relief, he sank back into the seat.

    “Well, I guess we are on our way now,” Aaron said, tucking his braids under his wooloo hat. He peered out the window as the station faded from view, and the train began a steady spiral down from the citadel mountaintop and toward the lower city. He reached into his pocket, pulled out his poké ball, and pressed the button, allowing his gengar to float about the compartment freely.

    The little joltik slid down Mylious’s arm and jumped onto his lap, excited for their adventure out of the citadel. However, Mylious tapped his foot and twitched as he stared into the corridor. The small window wouldn’t protect them from an angry Lord or Lady charging in and arresting them.

    “Hey, it will be okay, Mylious. Hishrak, keep watch, will you?” Clarence said, sending out his alakazam. The yellow pokémon flicked its pointed ears and rolled its eyes before staring out at the corridor. “See? Mylious, it will be fine.” Clarence grinned, adjusted his ponytail, and took off his thick coat.

    Mylious grimaced and turned to Aaron.

    “Yeah it will be fine. Like once we reach Col’an, my dad can’t do shit to us. Otherwise, he would be infringing on their border. Of course, in theory, we won’t be Elk’an anymore. We will have to pretend we are Col’an,” Aaron said with a smile. “I’ve never been to a festival before, and well, apparently, Lord De Jou is a big fan of parties and celebrating life, unlike my old man. Mylious? It will be fine. I can see the look on your face. If it cheers you up, Lord De Jou banned slavery in the capital.”

    “Thrilling,” Mylious replied. His eyes stared down at his feet. “Unless you are a f-f-foreign Lord who gets themselves arrested. Then you are their p-p-play things. Besides, if we go to Colran, you two best practice your ‘R’s. Unlike you, I grew up in a c-cage where not using your ‘R’s was considered savage. The h-h-hypocrisy. If we g-get caught, w-we are as g-good as dead.”

    “Oh, relax and don’t be such a baby. It will be fine!” Aaron leaned back and stared at the litwick pouting about being woken up. He reached into his little satchel, pulled out a berry, and placed it in his hand. The pecha berry was a plump pink, and the litwick’s eyes lit up at seeing it. It reached out with its stubby little white arms and snatched it from Aaron. Aaron leaned back, stared at the ceiling, and slumped back on the chair.

    “You know, Barook and I could have flown from the window, right?” Clarence said, scowling and crossing his arms.

    “Doubt it,” Aaron replied and rubbed his sore wrists. “Suck it up, dad.” Aaron stuck his middle finger up at the citadel through the window as the train pulled further away.

    Clarence stood up and opened the compartment door. He stepped out into the corridor with his back to Aaron and leaned against the wall. His fingers dove into his pocket, and he pulled out a small packet of cigarettes and placed one in his mouth. He then reached into his pockets and grabbed a small set of matches. Made from natural trevanant wood for an astonishing experience, Clarence read in his head and chuckled before he sighed again. Yeah right. I love the fact that being thrown out of a castle window and not enjoying it makes me a baby. On top of that, Hélena saw me throw up and is now your girlfriend. Fuck you, Aaron.

    Mylious held his leg in pain as the train rolled along the bumpy tracks down the mountain. He stared down at the arrows that were still stuck in his leg. That will get infected soon if we don’t get it seen, too. He glanced back at Aaron, staring out the window at the snow.

    The carriage door opened again, and Clarence sat back down, but his face was red with embarrassment and anger.

    “So… Hélena and you are dating now?” he asked.

    “Yep. She’s not going to regret it. I am totally going to be suitor material in like four years. So, if we start dating now, my dad can actually approve of our marriage on my 18th birthday, and we can finish off our time at the academy together. Erik will become Dad’s Lord Captain, and I will become his Lord Interrogator. She will be my wife, and we will have a family, and it will be sick!” Aaron smiled and looked back out the window.

    “No offence, Aaron, but you aren’t exactly interrogator material.” Clarence leaned back in his seat. “Besides, Hélena might not even want kids when she is older. She isn’t much older than you but still knows what she wants.”

    “What does that even mean, Clarence?” Aaron scowled. “Do you think you are better than me because you get better grades, and Von Recht actually likes you?” Aaron shunted Clarence back. “I am the son of the ruler. Yes, I hate my dad, but I am still better than you by blood!”

    “I regret helping you out of the Tauch. All you ever think about is yourself!” Clarence shouted.

    “So do you! Don’t you think I know you like her? You haven’t shut up about her since you were like 10! Oh, look at Hélena, she is so pretty… well, guess what, Clarence! I am allowed to like her, too! She wants to be with me right now! We are celebrating starting the high school section of the academy, and this year, we turn 15. Dad won’t let me celebrate it because he thinks I am a disappointment. Do you have any idea how that feels?” Aaron punched the window hard enough to leave his knuckles swollen and cut.

    “Forget it!” Clarence shouted and stormed out of the carriage once more.

    With a scowl on his brow, Aaron returned to staring out the window. Stupid dad, making new laws and getting mad at me all the time. Throwing me in the Tauch was the final straw… Stupid Clarence is getting mad at me for liking the same girl as him. He looked at Mylious, who was sniffling in pain. Damn it! Aaron closed his eyes and let the soft purple light of the litwick flicker, and silence filled the carriage. The litwick’s presence made him feel a little uneasy, as he remembered litwick can prey on the souls of humans if they were feeling especially malicious. However, he took a deep breath in and another out. He listened to the train chugging along the tracks towards Colok-Irok. He could hear the soft sound of mining in the distance from the miners from the town of Mesk. They’d often find duraladon in the mountain caves and battle them for their metal. Something Aaron had hoped he’d never have to do. His thoughts drifted to Mylious, and he wondered if Mylious would have ever been sent to the mines or if he would have remained a medical experiment testing subject for the rest of his life. Suppose he hadn’t killed his master, anyway. He let out a small yawn and drifted off.

    A few hours passed, and the train shook violently, waking Aaron from his slumber. Ugh… what now? Aaron looked around the carriage. He noticed the little white pokémon had dimmed its purple flame to help him sleep. He saw Mylious had spread himself out as best he could on the chair opposite him. The arrows were still sticking out of his leg. The stun spore powder had expanded, leaving a gooey yellow pus on his trousers. Oh, Mylious, that doesn't look good. Aaron looked around for Clarence, but there was no sign of him. … Clarence, Aaron thought before looking back out the window. The wooden bridge was shaking under the speed of the rolycoly powered train as they crossed over the river Shok. He could see the snowline fade in the distance as the trees became far thicker and the terrain became less hilly. Aaron wanted to take the stolen coat off momentarily but realised he was still wearing his Elkran uniform.

    The door to the carriage rattled open, and Aaron quickly turned to face it.

    “Clarence!” he shouted. A fist collided with his lip, and he fell back. His head spun momentarily as he saw his older brother, Erik, before him.

    “Dad is so pissed, Aaron. You are both coming with me. You are both under arrest.” Erik grabbed Aaron’s arms and pulled them roughly behind his back. He then pushed his brother’s face into the window, handcuffed Aaron, and forced him onto his knees. Erik took out his poké ball and pressed the little latch, and his beedrill poured out and whizzed around the small carriage. “Use toxic spikes.”

    The beedrill buzzed and spat out toxic spikes from its stinger, and they fell onto the floor.

    “Alright, Aaron, you know the drill.” Erik pulled up Aaron’s sleeve and pushed his brother’s arm into a toxic spike. “The more you move, the faster it will spread.” He turned to his beedrill and then looked at Mylious. “Push him onto the floor.” The beedrill buzzed and pushed Mylious onto the toxic spikes on the floor. Erik raised his leg and kicked Mylious in the stomach as hard as he could. “It is what you deserve. Next stop, Susk-Rosk.”

    “N-no, next stop is Quigk…” Mylious whispered. His leg twinged from the arrows, and his stomach ached from the kick. The toxins in his body made his throat feel like it was closing.
    #3 Jan 20, 2024
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2024
  4. Cavespider_17

    Giratina Egg
    (Giratina Egg)
    Level 2
    Oct 23, 2023
    Trainer Card - Cave Theme

    A Colran Dawn

    Sunday, 2nd January, 1966

    The train slipped behind the dam's waterfall as the dawn broke, plunging the carriage into darkness for a few seconds. The rails took a sharp turn leading into the base of the concrete wall. The archway trailed into a marble-coated train station. The purple glow of the lampent leaked into the carriage through the small window. Erik nudged Aaron awake with a scowl on his face.

    “Where the fuck are we?” Erik barked.

    “Quigk, Colran,” Aaron said. “You didn’t notice us go over the border? Damn Erik.”

    “Fuck! We are so fucked! Damn it… if they find us, we are dead. We are so, so dead!” Erik shouted, pacing rapidly.

    “Remember, no Elkrat. We must speak, Colrat,” Mylious whispered, trying to sit up as the toxins still roamed in his bloodstream. We shouldn’t even be here. He thought, I want to go home, as he fought back the tears that wanted to burst through.

    Aaron nodded at Mylious and Erik. Aaron pulled himself onto his feet. He felt sick, but he had no choice but to push forward. He shuffled out of the compartment along the tight Colran train’s corridor. Geesh, there are a ton of Colran Lords out and about today, he thought as he jumped onto the platform and rushed forward, only to look back at the train. We did it. We actually did it. Take that, you old bastard.

    “First time in the capital, boys?” a gruff voice said from behind. “Elkran shouldn’t be here.”

    Oh, shit… Erik is still in his uniform without a coat on, Aaron turned to look at his brother, who staggered back, pressing himself against the train.

    Mylious turned around and saw a Lord and Lady in their guard’s uniforms holding hands. His stomach began to churn as he stepped back at the sight of the Colran green jackets. Fuck, what do I do? What do I say? Fuck I was supposed to bow. Not supposed to be here… when Lord Piscar finds out, we are dead. He will hang me if I am lucky. What if I am not lucky? What will he do then? Mylious thought as he grabbed his throat. I can’t breathe. What if Lord De Jou finds out we are here? We are going to cause a war accidentally. I can’t… I can’t breathe! He felt a soft touch on his arm as the Lady got behind him. Her soft brown eyes glanced at him. Her long brown hair was platted, but he couldn’t get a good look without feeling more anxious.

    “On it, Lady Ashleigh,” Lord Xanthe responded. His gruff voice matched his rugged expression. His dark purple eyes almost blended with his thick black hair as he tugged down on his green jacket and placed a hand on his sword’s hilt.

    “Don’t touch me!” Mylious shouted out in Elkrat and drew his knife. “You w-w-will k-k-kill me.” His palms turned sweaty, and his fingers could not wrap around his poké ball. It fell out of his hand and rolled across the floor.

    Smoke started to fill the station, and the remaining civilians flooded out as fast as they could. Between Mylious and Lady Ashleigh, his large, black houndoom appeared, shaking the bones that lined her back and bowing her head before letting out a howl. Her twisted horns were sharp, and the smoke that had filled the room came from her orange-furred mouth. Before Mylious could open his mouth to stop her, she spat fire.

    “It’s using flamethrower, Minallo, take the damage! Lord Bradford, Lord Xanthe, let’s deal with this,” the Lady called out, tossing forward a green poké ball. In front of the houndoom, a 9ft rocky giant appeared, his body filled with hot coals, and its mouth opened to let out steam. Steam engine will make this quick. The coalossal roared and more steam poured out of its mouth. The Lady pointed at the houndoom, and the coals on his back started to shake and rise and flew forward at the houndoom.

    “Menerak!” Mylious shouted, stumbling onto his back.

    “Damn it! Can’t you do anything right?” Erik shouted at Mylious, throwing a poké ball into the fray. His dhelmise sprung up, slowly, allowing the coals to strike its body. His dhelmise’s anchor-like body swung around, slammed into the station’s floor and tore it up. The seaweed attached to him started to tear, and his circular wheel-like face winced in pain. Fuck, that ancient power did so much damage. Dakix can’t take another hit like that. “Retreat! Use phantom force!” Out of the corner of Erik’s eye, he saw a bright light extending out of one of Lor Xanthe’s rings on his left ring finger. Erik heard the clunk of the metal base of the poké ball hit the ground and roll, and the light converged onto the pokémon. A hollow, ghostly cry echoed in the station. That’s… oh fuck… that’s a mega chandelure… Erik looked up to the others and shouted, “It has battle bond! Get rid of it!” He clutched his mega stone tightly in his hand.

    The mega chandelure’s green flame flickered, and its head moulded into a long, thin tube, and the candles that once were bound by the black twisted, chandelier-like attachments on its body floated freely around. Its flames exploded at a flick of a wrist, and the scorching balls of fire coursed through the air.

    “I can mega evolve, too!” Erik shouted out, crossing his arms. Amongst the shadows, his dhelmise began his mega evolution, as his top half converted, producing a thick chain that dropped itself towards his anchor-shaped body.

    The scorching balls of fire spun rapidly through the air slamming into anything in sight. The first fireball from the chadelure’s overheat smashed into the large coalossal, making the giant pokémon wobble from the strike. Something which caught Mylious’s attention, and he took his eyes off of his houndoom for just a second. His stomach sunk as he saw the giant fireball heading straight for him. Instinctively, the joltik that had been sitting in his pocket leapt out and attempted to fire an electroweb into the fire. The loose webbed string, charged with electricity shot forward, however, it melted under the scorching heat of the chandelure’s attack, splitting off into several more petite balls.

    The joltik let out a scream of pain as the fire scorched her hairs on her body, setting her alight. Mylious’s eyes shot open and he couldn’t move. However, just as the smaller fireball went to strike him his houndoom dived into the way. Her body glowed a soft red and orange as she absorbed the fire, and charged her own firepower. She turned her head to see the joltik collapse onto the floor.

    “Good job! Idiot!” Erik shouted out. “Now it’s going to be faster and stronger!” Erik gestured to the boosted chandelure, which was now moving faster and more aggressively.

    Aaron’s voice deepened as he shouted back, “Piss off, Erik! Dragon rush, Irkaknok!” He tossed his poké ball forward, into the fiery fray. The salamence flew up, spreading his large red wings out, however, his ascent was quickly halted by the low train station ceiling. His blue scales seemed to grey a little amongst the flames as he charged forward. He drew his sharp teeth and roared as his wings slammed into the mega chandelure, sending it spinning.

    “S-s-stop insulting me, you f-f-f-fuck!” Mylious shouted back at Erik, finally regaining some focus. “Menerak, back Aaron up w-w-w-with dark pulse!” he tossed his hands forward, showing his knife. “Erik, watch out!” Mylious barked.

    Erik swivelled as Lord Xanthe drew his blade and swung at Erik. Erik fell backward and grabbed his own sword, swinging up in an uppercut to block the tip of the Colran Guard’s sword from slashing through his skin.

    Behind Erik, the houndoom’s dark pulse darted through the ground and slammed into the chandelure. A hollow cry echoed through the station, as the mega pokémon struggled to stay afloat.

    “Damn kid…” the Lord Xanthe called out, turning to the other Lord Bradford who had finally decided to step in. “You have asked for it now… brats.”

    “Sharella!” Lord Bradford shouted out as he took off his Guard’s cap, revealing his shaggy blond hair. His green eyes glistened in the lampent light as he tossed the poké ball forward. “Finish the salamence off!” A bright light appeared in the middle of the battlefield.

    Aaron rushed forward and shouted, “What is that?” his face screwed up, and he didn’t know what to do. The golden bright light started to shoot forward towards his salamence. His legs began to wobble and he tried to draw his sword. The beam knocked him onto his feet, spitting up parts of the train station’s floor towards him. “Gah! Fuck! Irkaknok watch out!”

    The salamence, unable to gain any height feels the heat of the fickle beam shooting towards him.

    “Protect, Hishrak!” Clarence shouted out, jumping out from the train carriage, with his alakazam behind him. “What the fuck is that?” He glanced over at the pokémon, unsure what to make of it. A blue protective shield appeared in front of the salamence’s tail. The golden glow from the fickle beam collided with it, leaving an echoing boom in the station.

    The Lord Bradford rushes forward at Aaron, knocking him onto his back. “Surrender, boy! Or would you rather my Hydrapple eat you?”

    Aaron glanced back up at the large pokémon, with its long green, snaking neck peering down at him. With a body shaped like an apple, how the fuck does it even move? Aaron thought, ignoring the Lord’s shouting. However, before he could issue another order to his salamence, Lord Bradford’s blade pressed against his neck. Quickly, Aaron rolled to the side and pushed the blade away with his sword. “Damn you!” However, it was too late. Rocks were already flying through the air and crashed into his salamence’s wings, sending him into the train, toppling the empty cart over.

    “Close the fucking station!” Lady Ashleigh shouted out. “Don’t let any trains in until this is cleaned up.” She tapped on the device around her wrist, furiously. “Good shot!” She called out to the coalossal.

    Clarence looked around and his heart started to race. The salamence had disappeared from view. “Hishrak…” he muttered and took a deep breath. “Let’s go! Cover your ears!” Clarence called out to Mylious, Aaron and Erik. “Psycho-screech!”

    A high-pitched psychic wave emitted from the alakazam’s mind, bouncing off the train station’s wall. The walls started to shake and the Lords and Lady covered their ears as the psychic waves pierced their minds.

    The coal-topped rocky body of the coalossal began to strain from the screeching that echoed around him and in his mind. The hydrapple, who stood proud and energetic a moment ago, swung her neck around, almost in an attempt to shake the sound out of her head.

    “Smart move,” the Lord Xanthe noted, seeing the waves surround Mylious’s houndoom, as the pokémon snarled eager to attack again. It’s a psychic-type attack, or the houndoom would be out for the count. Damn it, Minallo took a lot of damage; nevertheless, we all have another five pokémon and our blades, and right now, we are up. The Lord dashed forward, slamming Erik as hard as he could in the stomach before slashing him.

    “Yaow!” Erik screamed, falling over as the blade cut through his uniform and protective armour. His dhelmise appeared from the shadows, swinging hits anchor around, aiming for the Lord in a desperate attempt to send him flying off of his trainer’s injured body. However, the Lord rolled out of the way with precision and dexterity. The dhelmise’s anchor collided with the mega chandelure and, with the power of the phantom force attack, sent her up into the train station’s ceiling, cracking it. The tiles started to fall as the chandelure collapsed onto the floor unconscious and badly injured.

    “Brat!” Lord Xanthe shouted, smashing Erik’s shoulder with his sword’s hilt. The pain shot through Erik’s body, and he threw up in response. “Stay down!” His eyes turned to Lady Ashleigh, who was standing firm. Her sword was drawn and ready to attack Aaron.

    “Scorching sands, Minallo.” Her voice is cold as the ground underneath Mylious’s houndoom, the other Lord’s hydrapple, Clarence’s alakazam, Clarence, Mylious, and Aaron start to melt away, burning.

    Aaron’s legs started to shake, and he slipped into the sand, burning his shins. He attempted to swing with his sword, but the pain spreading through him echoed through his body. “Stop!” Aaron cried out to Lady Ashleigh, hoping she would order the coalossal would let up on the attack. “I’ll fucking crush you!” he yelled out.

    The scorching hot sand engulfed the base of the hydrapple; however, the scales on the hydrapple’s body fought off the pain. Meanwhile, Mylious’s houndoom’s black paws sunk into the sands, and she desperately tried to dig herself out.

    “Menerak!” Mylious called out. Pain surged through his leg, and blood trickled down his leg. “W-what?” His vision started to wobble as he felt a hand on his shoulder. “No! D-don’t touch me!” Mylious shouted.

    “Easy, boy.” Lord Bradford’s grip loosened, and he crouched down next to Mylious, taking his sword away. “Breathe in and out. Your battle is over.” His eyes glanced at the houndoom as she got spat out by the swirling, scorching sands and rolled onto the floor unconscious and covered in small sand splinters.

    Clarence, who was beginning to sink into the sand, could feel his trouser legs starting to scorch away, and he jumped up. “Fuck!” His eyes turned to his alakazam, who was being sucked in, and he seemingly didn’t care until his legs got nicked by the sand. His eyes turned red, and he let out a loud shriek in annoyance. The train started to glow a soft pink for a moment. The carriage’s brown body began to float upward, shaking. “Hishrak!” Clarence shouted, rushing over to him and pushing himself through the scorching sands. “I have a rawst berry, somewhere… in my bag… I’m sure I do!”

    “Clarence, no! Finish the ekans-apple pokémon!” Aaron shouted out as Lady Ashleigh approached him. “Ishnarok, help me!” His voice strained as he sunk deeper into the scorching hot sands. His salamence, injured, climbed out of the wrecked train carriage and began to flap his wings, dashing forward. “Fuck you, Clarence!” Aaron shouted out as he saw the hydrapple’s scales glow a soft green and begin to heal from the scorching heat. “You could have ended this!”

    “Piss off, Aaron!” Clarence called back as he reached for his alakazam. His eyes scanned around, looking for Erik’s dhelmise, who seemingly had faded back into the shadows. “Where the hell…?”

    Aaron felt the coat he was dressed in being grabbed from the back. “Gah!” he shouted out as he was yanked up out of the sand. “Ishnarok, hurry up!” he shouted.

    Lady Ashleigh ducked as the salamence swung over her head toward the hydrapple. “Bradford!”

    “That thing is still going? Fickle beam!” Lord Bradford called out, glancing up from Mylious, who was shaking on the floor.

    With a flick of her snake-like tongue, the glowing beam started to spew out of the dragon’s mouth. The beam surged forward and struck the salamence mid-flight, sending him ploughing into the ground in a heap. Her additional heads peered out from inside her body and let out a celebratory roar.

    “What the fuck was that?!” Aaron shouted as he tugged and pulled, trying to escape Lady Ashleigh’s grip.

    “I got him, don’t worry.” Lord Bradford approached Lord Xanthe and the injured Erik. “You might need to help Lady Ashleigh with the other one. He turned to Erik, who was sobbing in pain and bleeding. “My boy, let’s sit you up now.” He eased Erik up into the sitting position and shuffled him over next to Mylious.

    “N-now… Dakix….” Erik wheezed as his mega stone continued to glow. Out of the shadows, the mega dhelmise began to swing his anchor around, gaining momentum, hoping to land another phantom force strike. However, the fickle beam continued to rush and expand, smashing into the dhelmise, sending the mega pokémon hurtling toward central pillar of the train station.

    A loud explosive sound rattled the marble pillars of the station, and Mylious grabbed his ears. He turned to see Aaron fall onto his back. To his surprise, Clarence had managed to create a small psychic shield in front of his face. He swung his arm down and pushed Lord Xanthe back.

    “What did you do?” Clarence shouted at Aaron. “Why the fuck is he here?” Clarence glared at Erik. Despite Clarence’s attempts to protect himself, the marble continued to fall towards him. He toppled over and was violently sick on the platform’s floor. He pushed his blue hair out of his face to avoid coating it with vomit, but he felt his body ache all over. “Hishrak… help…” he muttered.

    “What seems to be the issue?” a chipper voice rang out.

    “Issue. The issue,” a second voice sang.

    “Oh my. What are four Elkran children – wait, no – young Lords doing here? I will take a little guess and say you don’t have a visa to be here. You don’t have any form of ID. You have no relatives in Colran who can come and pick you up from the jail you are about to be sent to for disturbing the peace, and you certainly don’t have any right or reason to have attacked these Guard members.” The man’s brown hair had an amber glow, and his brown eyes sparkled in the lampent light. His green jacket was perfectly ironed and had no wrinkles in the cotton as it draped over his white shirt and green tie.

    “Before I order you to be thrown in jail… I will be reasonable. Let’s try a question. You are Piscar’s son, are you not?” He glanced over at Erik, who was holding his stomach and trying not to throw up, and then back at Aaron, who was remarkably trying to get up onto his feet.

    “I don’t know what you are talking about,” Aaron replied, gritting his teeth.

    “Kid, let’s keep this simple. I ask a question. You tell me the truth. You look exactly like him, except for the green hair.” The Lord crouched down beside Aaron and looked up at him. He turned to see Erik, who had started to sniffle in pain. “Can you take care of him, sweet Combee, please?” he whispered to the Lady standing behind him. “Bradford, Xanthe, Ashleigh, thank you for your service as always.”

    The Lady nodded, walked over to Erik, and helped him sit upright.

    “This is… is… is… is… it. We are g-going to d-die here…” Mylious wheezed out. He stared down at his shaking hands. “It is all m-my f-fault.”

    The Lord’s eyes glanced over at Mylious, who his knife had stabbed during the quarrel. Damn it, kid, the Lord thought as he looked over to Lord Xanthe, Lord Bradford and Lady Ashleigh who had a few marks on their skin from the fight, but very little of note. What happened here? Mother of darkrai, how could you even stand, boy? He remarked, noticing the arrows sticking out of Mylious’s leg.

    Aaron glanced at the Lord and quickly said, “Alright, I am his kid, and I attacked them. They just wanted to protect me and my brother. So… arrest me instead and let my friends go! Or… Or I’ll send out my steelix.”

    “Kid, I have eight level 100 pokémon on me.” The Lord sat up. “Threatening me won’t work.”

    “E-eight?” Aaron felt nauseous and stepped back. “Y-you are Lord Elite De Jou. What the fuck?! I will fight you and protect my friends!” Aaron wobbled as he glanced up at the Colran ruler, who had simply raised an eyebrow at his threat.
    #4 May 1, 2024
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2024
  5. Cavespider_17

    Giratina Egg
    (Giratina Egg)
    Level 2
    Oct 23, 2023
    Trainer Card - Cave Theme

    The Man from Across the Border

    Sunday, 2nd January, 1966

    Aaron’s outburst echoed through the destroyed train station. Lord Xanthe scowled and opened his mouth to shout; however, he was met with the raised hand of Lord Elite De Jou.

    “You could. Or we could calm down.” Lord Elite De Jou looked at Aaron, who clenched his fists. He turned to the Lady who was comforting Erik. “Combee, do you think you could help him up?” She nodded back at him. “Let’s go to my little cabin; it's maybe an hour or two from here by sawbuck coach. We don’t have to make this a big deal, kid. I’ll ask some questions, we will patch you up, and I’ll send a squawkabilly to your dad, letting him know I arrested you.”

    “Fuck you,” Aaron scowled.

    “Kid, I am not interested in fighting Ellio’s pint-sized copy. He knows if he rocks up to war with me tomorrow, I will kick his arse. His Guard hasn’t recovered from the purge, and I heard it was a terrible harvest. My Guard is far more experienced, both tactically and practically. As far as I see, you and I could become friends now, Erik. When your father falls, maybe you and I could have something like I had with Hamilton?” Lord De Jou offered his hand to Aaron.

    “Aaron. I am Aaron, and I am nothing like my father!” Aaron made sure to pronounce his letters fully, tripping over his Rs a little as he spoke. Aaron then shuffled back and picked up Mylious, who was still bleeding.

    “You aren’t, huh? We will see. Oh, and that must be your older brother, Erik. Doesn’t matter. Come, let’s go to the cabin. My wife and I will then call the healer, and they will come and check you all over. Oh… your friend’s leg… um… I’ll make sure he gets proper treatment for that. Those arrows look deep.” Lord Elite De Jou nodded to his wife.

    Lady De Jou approached the scared Mylious and knelt next to him. “Come on, sweetie. Let’s get you in the coach. I promise I won’t hurt you, okay?” Her voice was gentle and soft.

    Lord Elite De Jou glanced at Aaron. “Also, your psychic friend shouldn’t make shields he cannot handle. If it is going to make him vomit uncontrollably, he will be a liability on the battlefield.” The Lord Elite flicked his wrist, creating a psychic shield large enough to protect his whole body for a few seconds before the blue protect fell into dust. “Now, if you wouldn’t mind returning your alakazam…” he said, a hint of threat underneath his calm words.

    “We aren’t friends…” Clarence muttered, scowling and crossing his arms, returning his alakazam to his poké ball.

    “I very much doubt that.” Lord De Jou waved his hand for the boys to follow and tucked them back into his jacket pockets. “Shall I talk in Elkrat?” He glanced back to Aaron, who shook his head, and Erik, who nodded.

    “It would be rude if we don’t speak your language…” Aaron whispered. “… And well… I am sorry for not using your title, my Lord Elite… and sorry for swearing at you…”

    “You are a teenager, you want to fly free like a beautifly, but you are still a young silcoon. I was a teenager once too.” Lord De Jou grinned at Aaron. He then turned to Erik, “Using toxic spikes on your brother and his friends was pretty awful. Perhaps don’t do that next time.” His eyes flickered pink as he spoke.

    Aaron grabbed his head and shook it. What was that? It felt like my brain was not thinking for itself. Aaron took a deep breath and looked at the mosaic steps leading out of the ruined train station. They were bigger than Aaron expected as he remembered his father drilling into him how insignificant the Colran people were and how superior the Elkran people were. He let out a little sigh, which caught Lord Elite De Jou’s attention. The purple lampent lighting faded into the beautiful starry night sky.

    It is never like this back home. The clouds from the mountains always tend to cover the sky, Aaron thought.

    “Sir, since you are a psychic, how come you didn’t get sick when you used your power?” Clarence asked as he ran up beside Aaron and scooted next to the Lord Elite.

    “I didn’t use that much power,” he replied with a shrug. He turned around to see Mylious struggle up the stairs, even with the Lord and Lady behind him. When the Lady touched Mylious’s arm to stop him from falling he paused. “Hey, it is okay. We aren’t going to hurt you,” he said.

    “D-d-d…” Mylious stuttered.

    “He doesn’t like being touched. I will fight anyone who makes my best friend scared,” Aaron said.

    “Aaron… just shut up. You know he will just kill us, right? He is Colran.” Erik grabbed hold of the railing as tight as he could.

    “I assure you, young Piscar, if I wanted to kill you, I would have done so already. My territory, my rules. What is your name?” the Lord asked, as he looked into Mylious’s grey and soulless eyes.

    “M-M-Mylious…” Mylious whispered.

    “To be frank, I am surprised your big friend here can still walk. He has two arrows stuck in his leg,” Lord De Jou said, looking at Aaron. “Since he was the one who initiated the attack, I will have to take a measure against him.”

    “A-A-Aaron?” Mylious squeaked.

    “It is okay, young Mylious. We just aren’t too happy about what happened, so you are technically under arrest. You boys did attack and result in a destroyed train station.” Lord De Jou watched Mylious turn a chalky white and start to pant. His eyes began to well up.

    Aaron turned to see Mylious starting to sob and opened his mouth to speak. He caught a glimpse of Lord De Jou raising his finger, and Aaron let out a low growl. He felt the warm Colran air brush against his skin, and the coat he was wearing was starting to make him sweat with each passing minute.

    Lord Elite De Jou walked over to the street and raised a hand, flagging a sawsbuck coach down, and placed a few coins into the driver’s hand, whispering something to him.

    With a scowl, Aaron looked back at Erik. “I wish I could hear him…”

    “Now, now, sweetie, let’s get you into the carriage.” Lady De Jou opened the black carriage, revealing the green seated interior with the Colran Flag on the backboard. She whispered to Mylious, “Why don’t you sit next to me, sweetie?” She sat down on the far seat next to the other door.

    Mylious felt his stomach tense up, and nausea crept in. He pulled himself into the carriage and sat next to Lady De Jou, but his eyes were fixed on Aaron.

    “Come on, young Piscars.” Lord De Jou came up behind Aaron and Erik. “Lord Bradford?” he called out, noticing Lord Bradford was still outside the train station. “Mind assisting in getting these boys to my cabin?”

    To Aaron’s surprise, Lord Bradford nodded and came over. However, when he took Erik’s arm, the grip didn’t seem rough but rather gentle and supportive. The Lord then offered Aaron a hand up into the carriage. Aaron looked down at his hand for a moment and then jumped into the carriage. Lastly, Lord De Jou and Clarence climbed into the sawbuck carriage and sat down.

    Lord Bradford pulled Erik against his shoulder so the injured boy could rest his head before saying, “These boys seem more scared than aggressive, sir.”

    “Indeed. I’ll sort it out. Thank you, Bradford.” Lord De Jou nodded and smiled as the coach began to move through the city. The gentle sound of the sawsbucks’ hooves clopping against the cobbled streets filled the carriage.

    After a few hours, with the city out of view the sawsbuck coach rolled over a bridge and stopped. The trees rustled with the sound of Colran pokémon in the branches. Aaron saw the starly fly away from their perches, spreading their black, brown and white wings as they chirped. The door to the carriage opened and they all climbed out. Lord De Jou began to hike through the woodland trail, eventually coming to a thicket. The Lord Elite pushed through the overgrown thicket revealing a small wooden cabin buried in the forest. Lord Elite De Jou carefully inserted his small golden key into the lock, twisting it and pushing the old creaky door open.

    The door opened up into a beautiful wooden panelled kitchen, and living room, with a soft dubwool sofa, a wooden table and wooden chairs.

    Aaron sat down on the small bench outside, listening to the starly sing. He leaned forward, pressed his elbows into the wooden table, and rubbed his sore wrists. The scars from the cuffs had started to heal already, but he felt a driving resentment resting inside of him. He reached into his pockets, pulled out his poké ball, and released his samurott outside. He clapped his flippers quickly before waddling over towards Aaron.

    “A samurott, huh?” Lord De Jou said.

    “Pretty rare, kid.” Lord Bradford knelt beside the samurott. “You know if you and your friends didn’t start shit…”

    Lord De Jou smiled at the remark and said, “Now, now, they are just kids. The ruler of Elktan’s kids, but still kids.”

    Aaron whispered, “Can I ask you something, sir? Sorry if it seems inappropriate, but why don’t you have kids? Since isn’t being a ruler and having an heir important?”

    “It is fine. I do have kids. I have three adult kids: two girls and a boy. We talked about it and decided that when I die, resign, or am overthrown, they will all actively choose to surrender because they love me, and I love them. I don’t want them to feel the stress I feel.” The Lord straightened himself up and looked over at Aaron.

    “I wish I wasn’t a Piscar.” Aaron looked up at the Colran ruler before petting his samurott’s soft body.

    The Colran ruler stared down at his hands for a moment before saying, “You’ll do great things, Aaron Piscar. Let’s get you inside. You and your friends can sleep in our kids’ rooms.” He wrapped a hand around Aaron’s shoulders and helped him inside.

    Aaron looked at him, unsure, before eventually saying, “Is it true? You are the fifth reincarnation of him?” He followed Lord De Jou into the kitchen and waited expectantly.

    “That’s what people say.” Lord De Jou opened the kitchen cabinet, pulled out some wheat sticks, and placed them on the marble kitchen top. His luxray let out a loud yawn as she came out of his bedroom, startling Aaron. She stretched her legs and flicked her main before sitting by the countertop, waiting for food.

    Aaron looked back at him. I wonder what it must be like to be the reincarnation of the great Igor Rett, Aaron thought, recalling his history lessons about the first child born on the island.

    “But I am not so sure, and maybe I don’t want to be his reincarnation.” Lord De Jou knelt down and ruffled the luxray’s mane. “Good girl.” He chopped the wheat sticks up into long thin flexible waves before he walked over to the small berry bowl on the side. He picked up a lum berry, and reached over to pick up a ganlon berry but stopped. No, these children will find it way too bitter, he thought. He picked up the rawst berries next to it and placed them into a pan. He opened up the wooden cabinet and pulled out a large wooden spoon before bending over and pulling out a small bag of sugar and mixing it into the pan.

    “What are you making?” Erik asked. “It better not be poison!”

    “Now, young Erik, if I was going to kill you, I could very easily.” Lord De Jou turned around and began lifting something invisible but heavy with his arms in mid-air. Darkness swirled around them, and whispers crept through the walls.

    “I can control the stones without touching them. I can hear them talking without being influenced by them. I can use their power without hurting myself.” Lord De Jou lowered his arms, turned around, pulled out a box of matches and lit the stove. “All pokémon obey me without question, and it is like I can hear them talking.” He swirled the pan for thirty seconds before reaching back into the cupboard, pulling out four small bowls and pouring the liquid into them. He picked up the wheat sticks and brought them over to the teenagers.

    “Thank you, sir,” Clarence said.

    “Thanks,” Erik said, dipping the wheat stick into the sugary berry juice.

    “Thanks, sir.” Aaron took the bowl and sat down. So, it is true, just like Igor, that after he used the pokémon’s souls to create the 18-type stones, he could control them.

    Lord De Jou’s luxray leapt up and pressed her face against Aaron’s. Her yellow and red eyes stared into his green ones. He felt her breath on his face as she stretched her claws into his leg.

    “Ow, okay, okay… you can have some!” Aaron took one of the slices of the berry out and opened his hand. The luxray let out a chipper roar before chomping down on it. “Good girl.” He took one last glance at the Colran ruler before taking another bite out of his food.

    And just like that, I know he will be a great leader someday. Thank you, Jun Seo. I will make sure they are ready for Ellio Piscar. Lord De Jou nodded in approval as he cleaned up his kitchen.
    #5 May 4, 2024
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2024
  6. Cavespider_17

    Giratina Egg
    (Giratina Egg)
    Level 2
    Oct 23, 2023
    Trainer Card - Cave Theme

    Through and through

    Sunday, 2nd January, 1966

    Mylious sat up in bed and stared at the mirror across from him. He lifted his left arm and narrowed his eyes, locking his sights on the burn scar that was etched on his left arm. The symbol that had been scorched into his skin was that of a sandaconda wrapped around his arm. He placed his hand over it and closed his eyes. I wish I had been born to anyone else. The door creaked open, and Mylious grabbed his knife from the desk only to lower it again.

    “Hey, sorry, I didn’t mean to scare you. Thomas… I mean, Lord De Jou wanted me to check in on you. Are you okay?” Lady De Jou asked.

    “No. I-I-I feel…” Mylious stuttered.

    “How long have you had a stutter?” she asked and looked at Mylious’s arm.

    Mylious grabbed his arm again to cover the burn and said, “A-as long as I c-can remember, L-Lady De Jou.” He felt her sit on the bed beside him, and he saw her reach into her pocket and pull out a small case. Mylious felt a slight nausea in his stomach as she opened it, but his anxiety changed to relief when he saw the gauze roll.

    “You were a slave once, right? Thomas was, too. He doesn’t like to talk about it, but well, I think you need to hear it. We can cover it up if you want, or maybe while you are here, we can cover it up with skin markings. Would you like that?” Lady De Jou asked.

    “N-not sure.” Mylious stared back at his reflection in the mirror. “It will h-h-hurt to hide. I am a f-f-freak.”

    Lady De Jou sighed and picked up the blanket on the basket at the end of the bed. Carefully, she wrapped it around him, making sure she didn’t touch him as she did. I guess you grew up in fear. I wonder what they made you do and from what age. It isn’t something you ask, but…

    “Hey, Mylious… it is Mylious, right? The healer is here. Let’s have a look at that leg and maybe pull those arrows out. Walking around with them still buried deep is not healthy for you. Do you want your friends with you while they pull them out?” Lord De Jou asked in Elkrat, hoping to make the boy feel more comfortable. He was taken back slightly when Mylious shook his head, still holding onto his arm. “Okay. Girna, let’s give him some privacy.” Lord De Jou and Lady De Jou looked at each other and walked into the living room together.

    Mylious, feeling alone, glanced up at the healer, unsure of what the woman was going to say to him. He tensed up with every step she took. Her brown hair and blue eyes contrasted greatly with his own. Mylious’s muscles in his leg contracted the second she leaned forward to touch his injury.

    “Sweetie, I need to see your injury,” the healer said.

    Mylious glared at her. “No. I don’t w-w-want you to.” He tensed himself up further and buried his head under the pillow. His hopes of her leaving him alone were quickly dashed when she pulled the covers off of the bed.

    The healer gently hushed him with her soothing voice as she examined Mylious’s swollen leg. “Sweetheart, those arrows are in really deep,” she said as she felt around his lower leg. “It looks broken. I’m going to use my luxray to check, okay? Then I’ll pull them out and bandage your leg.”

    “No! I don’t want that! Won’t it g-g-get infected?” Mylious snaps back in Elkrat. “D-don’t you d-d-dare touch me! I’ll do it myself!” Mylious grabbed the arrow shaft and yanked them out one by one, much to the horror of the healer. With a sniffle, he said, “There! N-n-now, disinfect it!”

    “You are being very demanding, young man. Be respectful, or I will tell Lord De Jou.” The healer reached into her bag and pulled out a chansey egg mix. However, as she looked back up at Mylious, she saw tears streaming down his face, and he was trembling.

    Mylious squeezed his knees against his chest and cried. Please no. He will execute me. I don’t want to die. I don’t want this. I don’t want to be here. I want to go home. I don’t want to be here. It’s too noisy. Too noisy. Too bright. I don’t want him to kill me! He tensed up further as his tears poured down his face.

    The healer sighed, seeing the boy cry, and smiled, saying, “Okay, there is no need for tears. I know you are just scared.” She looked up and saw the brand on Mylious’s arm. Well, that makes way more sense now. “I won’t tell, but you’ve got to promise to be a big boy about this.”

    “I am a b-big boy… I’m a freak…” Mylious sobbed as the healer sprayed some chansey egg onto his leg. Mylious winced as the spray coated over his leg. “I-I am s-sorry… p-please don’t t-tell… I-I am already in t-trouble…” he sniffled again.

    “How is he?” Lord De Jou asked as the bedroom door opened. He and Lady De Jou walked in, followed by his polteageist.

    The healer looked up and smiled. “He’s okay. He is terrified, but he will recover. He’s a little snappy and stressed, understandably,” she said in a whisper as the floating white and teal green teapot edged closer to her. “You want to give him some poltea, with some cheri berry. The chansey egg will only do so much for his leg. The arrows had stun spore powder on their tips.”

    “Hmm, thank you. I’ll think about how to punish him for starting the fight… but I suspect you are right. Trilla, would you mind?” Lord De Jou asked the floating teapot before glancing at his wife, who had left the room. As he finished her name, the polteageist’s purple, liquid-like body popped out of the top, and she nodded. Her golden yellow eyes gleamed off the flickering litwick that sat by the desk.

    Lord De Jou smiled as the polteageist poured some of her excess bodily output into the small mug by the bedside. He approached the bed and gently placed his hand on Mylious’s shoulder. You’ll be fine, young Mylious. We can talk later. Try resting for an hour.” He checked his watch, noticing the time. It’s only 10 AM.” He smiled, as Lady De Jou squeezed the cheri berry into the cup, and handed it to him. “Drink this. It will make you feel a little better.”

    “Yes, Lord Elite De Jou…” Mylious whispered. His hand shook as he tried not to stutter over his words. He grasped the cup, terrified. “W-won’t it kill me?” he whimpered.

    Lady De Jou sat down beside him. “No, sweetie. Only wild and angry polteageists carry that risk. I promise, Trilla is lovely.” She leaned over and placed another berry down in front of the little litwick, whose waxy, white body was dripping a little.

    Mylious sighed and looked at the litwick’s flickering purple flame, before nodding, and pulling the former sinistea’s cup up to his lips. The white rim and teal decoration matched that of the polteageist. He squeezed his eyes shut and expected the worst. However, the slightly spicy taste of the berry’s juice overpowered the chilling feeling of the poltea.

    “Thank you,” Mylious whispered as he rested his head on the pillow. His Joltik got comfortable next to him, still sporting the burns from the fight earlier. To his surprise, Lady De Jou adjusted the soft mareep woollen blanket, so it covered him and nodded. She pulled out the door as she left the room and walked back into the living room.

    Lady De Jou sat beside Lord De Jou on the sofa. She took a deep breath and looked at her husband, who had closed his eyes and leaned back on the brown cushions. They are in our kids’ rooms right now. I miss our babies. Thomas, what are you planning to do to these kids? They are just starting.

    Lord De Jou opened an eye, glanced at his wife, and whispered, “I won’t be around forever. The sad but true fact is, I am getting old now.”

    “Only 68,” she whispered back.

    “Only 68. For a Lord Elite, that’s ancient as fuck. I am a failure, Girna. I failed my best friend, and yet the world hails me as some peace-bringer. If Ellio Piscar implements this new law, which enslaves large amounts of his people, what do I do? Do I act? Do I call Lord Captain Madison and order a march on Elktan? I wish I could outright ban it, but of course, I can’t do that because if I do that, then Kilgor will be up my arse before I could even draw my blade. “But Thomas, you are the chosen one. The one to unite Coltar.” That’s what the people will say when I am not. Then I got a squawkabilly letter from Jun Seo this morning saying that he is going to die soon and Von Recht will take over. That can’t happen because that man is a sheer dickhead.” Lord De Jou got up and turned to see Aaron standing behind him. “How much did you understand?”

    Aaron looked down and whispered, “A bit, sir. I don’t agree with what my dad wants to do either. He’s just too powerful right now. Erik is stronger than me, though, and faster. He could stop my dad.”

    “Him and what army?” Lord De Jou asked. “Hmm?”

    unable to sleep, Mylious limped into the room. His leg was now splinted, and the healer was beside him. Mylious’s joltik bounced up and down on his shoulder, excitedly leaving Lord De Jou in a little chuckle.

    Lady De Jou got up off the sofa and walked over to the sobbing Mylious. She extended her hand and took his, guiding him to the couch and sitting him next to Aaron.

    “I think I know w-what I w-want to do with m-my arm. I w-want to be a d-doctor someday, so I was w-wondering if I c-could have the b-burn corrected to the u-universal symbol for a m-medic.” Mylious walked over to Lady De Jou and looked into her eyes. “B-but I w-want my f-friends to be with me.” He rubbed his eyes as he spoke.

    “That will hurt like a pinurchin’s sting, kid. Are you sure?” Lord De Jou asked. You could be stuck there for hours.”

    “Mhm…” Mylious whispered. “My f-friends don’t let my p-past define me, so why should a b-burn mark?” Mylious tucked his hands in his pockets and grinned.

    I think that’s the first time I’ve seen him smile, Lord De Jou thought. “Right, let’s get you boys into town. We will buy you whatever clothes you want, and you can go to celebrate.”

    “Sir, are you sure that’s okay?” Aaron asked. “I feel like we’ve already taken up lots of your time.”

    Lord De Jou nodded at Aaron and pushed his hair back. He grinned as Aaron smiled at him and waved his hands to his friends to follow. Lord De Jou quickly turned to Lord Bradford. “Send a squawkabilly to Kirot Akalt, will you, my friend? Tell the Elkran Lord Elite, Ellio Piscar, his two sons are in Colran – with two of his young Lords. Inform him that he will have to collect them himself if he ever wants to see them again.” His voice was calm and barely audible amongst the sound of the teenagers rushing to pile out the door. “Oh, and send him proof.”

    “Yes, Thomas.” Lord Bradford turned and patiently waited to leave. He quickly raised his arm, pulled up his holo device strapped around it, and recorded a short video of the teenagers. “I will send it once I get back to the capital.”

    “Not so fast. Aren’t you forgetting something, boys?” Lady De Jou asked. Her hand was on her hip, and she looked at Aaron and Erik.

    “She means money,” Clarence said, tying his ponytail back. Lady De Jou’s smile took him aback. He saw her reach into her pocket and pull out a small bag of coins. She placed the tauros leather bag into Clarence’s hand. “Thank you, my Lady.”

    Lord De Jou led the way down the path through the trees. The dirt path was dry, at least for now. He turned back to see Erik looking away with a scowl painted on his face. He slowed his pace and dropped back, allowing Aaron and Clarence to overtake him.

    “Boys, don’t wander too far ahead,” Lady De Jou called out.

    “Yes, Lady De Jou,” Clarence answered.

    “Yes, my Lady,” Aaron answered.

    Lord De Jou smiled and said, “You know, Erik, you are allowed to have fun, too.”

    “No. You are the enemy and scum.” Erik looked down further before adding, “You know, you aren’t that strong. I’d beat you in battle.”

    Rather than laughing at the preposterous statement, the Colran Ruler nodded. “You could, maybe. What would you like to do while you are here, Erik?”

    “Look, I’m not like my brother. I’m not stupid. I know you are going to use us as leverage against our father. I’d rather die,” Erik hissed.

    Lord De Jou looked at Erik and sighed. “You really think I’d do that?”

    “I heard you!” Erik snapped back.

    “You only heard what you wanted to hear,” Lord De Jou said as he stepped into the woods. “Go on ahead, love,” he said as he switched to Colrat and spoke to his wife before switching back to Elkrat. He continued to walk into the treeline. “Come, Erik.”

    Erik scowled but followed him into the woods. “Where are we going?” he asked. However, he groaned in annoyance as the older man continued to walk. Erik clambered over a fallen tree as the path disappeared. Erik turned around to try and get one last glimpse of his brother, but the trees made it impossible.

    Eventually, the trees opened up into a small clearing filled with pokémon that Erik had never seen before. Out of the corner of his eye, however, he saw something that looked slightly familiar.

    In the middle of the clearing was a log bench, looking into flowers. Lord De Jou sat down on the bench and tapped the wooden seat so Erik would come closer.

    “It’s… so peaceful here…” Erik said quietly, realising he could hear himself think. “Is that a ponyta? Why is it pink?” he asked the Colran ruler.

    “Hmm? Oh, that’s just the type of ponyta that is found in Colran.” He glanced over at the ponyta, which was trotting around and flicking its blue and pink mane. I suppose you see more of the fire-type ones down in Elktan, but here they are psychic-type.” Lord De Jou took a deep breath and looked back at Erik. “You know, Erik, you don’t have to feel overwhelmed all the time. I can see you care a lot about your country and your brother. I suspect you feel pressured to hold up a certain appearance, to be tough.”

    Erik nodded, unsure whether to argue for the sake of arguing with his country’s rival ruler or to accept the man was right. His black hair flopped down, and he looked at the ponyta again. The pokémon had trotted closer, flicking its tail and main. Its horn glowed softly in the forest.

    “What the?” Erik said in Elkrat as the ponyta stuffed its snout under his hand and made soft puffing noises from its nose. “Um… hi there…” he whispered. Calm washed over him, and he could feel his lungs filling with fresh air.

    “I guess she likes you.” Lord De Jou got up and placed a poké ball into Erik’s hand. “If you want to catch her, that is, you’ll have to battle her.” He grinned at Erik. This is what you need: a chance to let off steam and work towards something that you want – not what your father does. Go for it, kid.

    Erik looked at the poké ball and then at the ponyta. “Um… my dhelmise is still recovering so… I guess I’ll use my magc…” he began. However, he noticed the scowl on Lord De Jou’s face.

    “Fire in a forest?” Lord De Jou said.

    “Right… fire… um… I’ll use my volcarona.” Erik stepped back and tossed his volcarona’s poké ball forward. The large moth, like pokémon, appeared in front of him. His ice-blue wings flapped, chilling the air around him. The white fuzzy body muted the black spots on his body.

    “You surprise me,” Lord De Jou said.

    “Well, sir, not all larvesta are fire types in Elktan; some are ice types.” Erik looked on at the ponyta as she readied herself to battle him. “Besides, a larvesta is way cooler than a frostmoth!”

    I will see if you mega-evolve it. I wonder if it has the ability frozen thaw. The ability to transform into a fire type and vice-versa. In all my years, I’ve only seen that happen once, Lord De Jou thought as he watched Erik.
    #6 May 9, 2024
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2024
  7. Cavespider_17

    Giratina Egg
    (Giratina Egg)
    Level 2
    Oct 23, 2023
    Trainer Card - Cave Theme

    To Virto

    Sunday, 2nd January, 1966

    The trees rustled in the woodland near Fehahra town as the ponyta shook her mane and lowered her horn, preparing for battle.

    Erik heard footsteps behind him and spun around. A group of men in mareep woollen clothes came into the clearing, their bows and arrows drawn. Upon seeing Erik, they lowered their bows and gave him a thumbs-up. However, Erik’s stomach churned a little.

    “It’s okay, Erik. They are just hunters. I think they heard the noise of your volcarona and wanted to check it out. Why don’t you show them what you can do?” Lord De Jou said, relief in his voice that the hunters hadn’t bowed to him, yet he knew they wouldn’t. These hunters dare not bow or move in a manner which would make them vulnerable out here. I respect that.

    “Lixin, use freeze-dry!” Erik called out in Elkrat at the top of his voice, and his volcarona started to flap his large blue wings, sending a chilling wave of air through the small clearing. The air struck against the trees surrounding the snow-white ponyta, leaving a thick layer of ice hanging from their bark. However, the ponyta seemed unfazed by his attempt and slid across the ice that was forming on the ground, using psychic to block the shards of ice that were hurtling her way from the volcarona’s freeze-dry attack. Despite her best efforts, some of the shards struck her body and dried into clumps, scoring her through her fur.

    Erik stood shocked as the sound from the ponyta’s hooves changed into a sliding grating, getting louder and louder. Her horn was down, and she rushed towards the volcarona. When she was a mere metre away, she changed direction, slammed into the surprised Erik and knocked him into the hard, frozen, icy bark of a tree.

    “Ouch.” One of the hunters turned to the others. “I hope the Elkran have bone compaction like we do… or that’s going to be bad.”

    “They do.” Lord De Jou continued to watch Erik as he got himself back up. “Go on, Erik. You might be used to the mountains and the woods of Elktan, but the forests in Colran are a different story.”

    He’s right, and I hate to admit it. The Colran Ruler is fucking right. The trees are closer together, meaning I’ll have to cut off the escape myself, or at least try. I could draw my shield and… no… let’s think about this… Erik paused.

    “He should block off the escapes… er… let’s see how do I tell him…” one of the hunters said.

    Lord De Jou smiled at them, “Let’s see if he can figure it out himself first. He will have to learn these things; it’s just like combat, after all.”

    Erik glanced around at the woods again. “I… alright, Lixin use… What?! Yaow!” he shouted as her hooves slammed into his chest and battered him against the tree again. “Ugh… why? Fucking stomp on me.” Erik sunk against the tree. “This is hopeless…” he muttered.

    The tallest hunter, with his shaggy brown beard, came over to Erik and offered him a hand as the ponyta hung back. “I don’t think he will learn unless he is told.”

    “Told what?” Erik asked.

    “Your body is not a shield, so stop standing still. Move as you give an order. Look around you. There are trees everywhere. Now get back up and win, kid. Or is this the best Elktan has to offer?” The hunter raised an eyebrow as he finished speaking and stepped back.

    Erik looked around him again as he stood up. The trees are my shield. I get it. Aaron would have gotten it instantly… but not me… am I just stupid? No. I have other talents. Erik grimaced from the pain as the ponyta readied herself again, looking slightly tired from the double attack on Erik and the pain on her sides. “Alright, let’s do this.” He clenched his fists excitedly, moving so the trees were between her and him. “Lixin, this time, use frozen storm!”

    The volcarona flapped his wings excitedly as the tips began to glow, spilling out a barrage of snow towards the ponyta. Erik stepped out in front of a tree and waved his arms at her. She swirled her mane around, lowered her horn, and charged at him. Her horn glowed a soft pink as it filled with psychic energy.

    Erik was ready this time as the barrage of snow, and now hail struck her legs, slowing her down. She was almost upon him, and he dived out of the way and against the ground. A loud crack echoed in the clearing. He swivelled around as he pulled himself up onto his feet. Her horn was stuck into the tree bark. The hunters began to applaud him, and Erik blushed a little.

    “What now?” Erik called out to Lord De Jou as he faced him.

    “Oh, you don’t have any empty poké balls on you?” Lord De Jou thought for a moment. Have you never been taught to catch a pokémon, young Piscar? “I see… you may use one of mine. I always carry empty poké balls just in case.” He handed the poké ball to Erik. “Now, just press the button as you throw the poké ball. Pull your arm back and throw.” Lord De Jou adjusted Erik’s stance and gestured for him to throw.

    “Alright, here goes…” Erik said, pulled his arm back and tossed the ball forward with strength and speed. It slammed into the injured ponyta’s side and sucked her inside.

    Erik looked at the poké ball that rocked on the woodland floor. He glanced up at the Lord Elite, who smiled back and gestured for him to pick the poké ball up. Erik nodded back, walked over to the poké ball, and picked it up. So, now what? he thought. I feel like a lot of that pressure on me has just gone. Erik sat down on the log next to the Lord Elite, his eyes still locked on the poké ball.

    “I did it; I mean, I actually did it…” Erik whispered. “I… father wouldn’t approve…”

    The Lord Elite smiled back at him and said, “And why does his opinion on your pokémon matter? Yes, she isn’t a trained pokémon, nor will it necessarily be combat bred, but she is the pokémon you chose to catch.”

    “Yeah, um… I suppose you are right, sir.” Erik sighed as he finally looked up from the poké ball. “I am sorry if my Colrat isn’t very good…” he muttered as he felt the hand of the Colran Ruler on his shoulder.

    “Let’s join the others; they will be waiting for us at the flight depot. And Erik?” the Lord Elite said, standing up and offering him a hand.

    “Sir?” Erik reached up and took his hand, stood up and glanced at the poké ball again.

    “Have some fun. Let your ponyta follow you around if that’s what will make you happy.” With one final nod, he led the way back to the path through the woods.

    Erik grinned and pressed the poké ball’s button. The ponyta poured out in front of him, and immediately rubbed her head against his hand. “I like you too.” He reached into his pocket and pulled out some oran berry cream with his other hand and started to apply it lightly onto her wound.

    The small town of Fehahra was alive with the sounds of festival goers. Aaron, with his vibrant green hair, almost blended in amongst the Colran citizens – at least those who didn’t get mutated hair and eye colour genes – and had decided to dye their hair or paint their faces for the day. The air was filled with the sweet scent of food stalls and the lively tunes of lutes and banjos, creating a festive atmosphere.

    “Keep up, boys. We are nearly there,” Lady De Jou said.

    “Lady De Jou, where are we going?” Aaron said.

    Lady De Jou, with a comforting smile, held Mylious's hand tightly as she turned to Aaron and said, "To the flying depot. We are going to fly to the town of Virto by Lake Estok. We were going to go back to the Capital, but given Mylious’s pain and stress, we will take you to Virto instead. It will be much quieter, and you’ll get to do more events." Concerned for Mylious, she asked, "Are you okay, sweetie?"

    Mylious nodded in response, though his face was contorted in pain from the difficulty of walking.

    “We are back.” Lord De Jou jogged up behind them with Erik in tow.

    “Mylious is struggling,” Lady De Jou said. “I shall contact one of the Guards in Virto, and they’ll prepare some crutches for him when we land.”

    Lord De Jou raised an eyebrow in response to the change in plans, as it wasn’t something he had agreed to. However, he nodded. Of course, Virto will be a nice place to go. I haven’t been there for a while. I know these boys will love it. “Good idea, love.”

    Clarence tilted his head and asked, “What does that word mean?”

    It means you four are going to have a great time. Lord De Jou responded psychically and stepped toward the flying depot. The building that contained the pokémon and their pilots appeared unremarkable from the outside, resembling any ordinary shop. Its weathered stone walls, tinged with shades of grey, showed signs of decay in certain areas. As he entered, he held the door ajar for his wife and the group of teenagers, smiling.

    Their arrival prompted an animated response from the first depot owner, who dashed forward. With her dark purple hair streaming behind her, she knelt and exclaimed, "My Lord Elite!"

    The second depot owner recoiled in surprise before bowing, "Lord Elite De Jou? What are you doing here? I mean, my Lord Elite, how can we serve you? I mean…"

    “It’s okay, relax. No need to bow to me,” Lord De Jou said, waving his arms frantically. “Actually, we would like a ride to Virto. My wife and I have some very special guests. This is Erik Piscar, the eldest son of the Elkran Lord Elite; Aaron Piscar, his youngest son; Clarence Bourbabel, a young Lord; and lastly, this young Lord is Mylious Jackson.”

    With a nod, the elderly woman rose from her knees. “I see, well a group of one, two… six… you’ll need a strong pokémon to carry the carriage as it will be a large carriage. Do you have any phobias of specific pokémon? Oh, should I try to ask in their language? Or maybe I should draw a picture?”

    “Oh, no, that’s not necessary. Let me ask them.” Lady De Jou looked at the boys, still holding Mylious’s hand. “Boys, are any of you afraid of any type of pokémon or flying?”

    “No, Lady De Jou,” Aaron Piscar said. He looked at Mylious, who limped forward.

    Mylious’s throat tightened, wondering what they would do to him if he revealed his fears. However, he saw the comforting smile of Lady De Jou and gritted his teeth, taking a deep breath before he whispered, “S-S-Sanaconda… Miss.” He rubbed his arm where his brand was as he spoke.

    “It’s okay, Mylious.” Clarence then added, “I really don’t like heights or flying. Flying makes me feel sick… I’m sorry…” His spine shivered just thinking about the way they fled the citadel.

    Erik shrugged at the question, and continued to pet his ponyta’s head. He felt calm as he looked at the pastel colours of her mane. He reached out and ran his fingers through. “Can she stay out of her poké ball?” he asked in Elkrat.

    “Yes, Erik.” Lord De Jou then switched back to Colrat and said, “One is afraid of heights and one is afraid of sandacondas, I assume that the latter will not be an issue. The former will be a large issue…”

    The man in the depot placed his hand on his chin for a moment and responded, “Not necessarily, my Lord. We can use a carriage with curtains… if that’s okay with you. And um… it’s on the house…”

    “No, no! I’ll pay… it’s fine!” Lord De Jou said, waving his arms around, reaching into his tauros leather wallet and pulling out some coins to pay for the transport. “Should only take an hour or two.”

    For a calm and noble guy, he certainly gets all freaked out when someone tries to treat him like the ruler he is, Aaron thought. You are so different to Dad. Aaron stepped to the side to allow the two owners of the depot to go through the back, where the carriages were. Aaron stepped out to follow them; however, an extended arm was pressed against his chest, stopping him in his tracks as Lord De Jou entered the backyard. The carriages were lined up in size order, and Aaron felt his stomach churn at the thought of being stuffed inside one of the smaller carriages. He started to jog to keep up with the Lord until they reached the middle of the fenced-in yard. Each chain link surrounding them appeared more rusted than the last. This place must have been here forever. Huh? I don’t know what that says… Aaron walked over to the small building around the back, hoping no one had noticed his brief wander. On the wall was a carved marking in what he believed to be a broken Colrat. Let’s see… something… about…

    “It says Lord Ghetz must die. You see this word here?” the elderly man said, coming over. “I am sorry I do not speak your language, but I assume you speak ours – or at least some. That word is a very old Colrat word. It hasn’t been used for over a hundred years, at least officially. A lot of Colran people still cannot read, even though Lord De Jou has been doing his best to introduce education.”

    “What does it mean exactly, though?” Aaron asked, tilting his head slightly, with his Elkran accent shining through his Colrat words.

    “It means to die but in the sense of being overthrown for the greater good. As you may know, we use combined words when we speak.” The elderly man gestured with his hands.

    “Yeah, I don’t get that,” Aaron struggled to say.

    “It’s okay. It is hard for foreign people to understand what to stack and what not to stack, but here is your lesson, kid: you stack what is relevant to the noun. For example, you’d stack colours, activities and nouns. In this case, the term death is stacked with the adjectives and the noun for Lord Ghetz, see?”

    Aaron looked at the markings again. “I see… but who the fuck is Lord Ghetz?”

    “Come on, young Piscar, enough of those questions. Let’s get going. It is nearly 11:30, and I am sure you want to have lunch, yes?” Lord De Jou called out, standing in the doorway of a long black carriage. Beside the carriage stood the pilot in his goggles and leather jacket, ready to go with the flock of 5 talonflames that were being harnessed.

    “Yes, sir!” Aaron said, giving the elderly man one final smile. Thank you, sir.” Aaron bowed to him and ran towards the carriage, jumping inside. He shuffled into the seat as the man shut the door and sat next to him. He pressed his face against the glass to look out the carriage window as they slowly began to take off. As he did, he heard Clarence whimper behind him. “What? You going to cry now?” Aaron snapped.

    “Hey!” Lord De Jou said, shooting Aaron a cold glance.

    “I really, really don’t like heights… I really don’t want to fly, and it’s getting worse… you made it worse… I didn’t want to jump…” Clarence muttered, shaking and squeezing his eyes closed. “And you were flirting with her, and I like her, and you then teased me. I thought we were friends…”

    Aaron’s eyes shot open. “I… I didn’t mean it like that. I was just messing with you… you know?”

    “It wasn’t funny!” Clarence snarled, creating a small psychic field before it disappeared in front of him.

    Aaron turned to Lady De Jou, who was gently holding Mylious’s hand. He then glanced at Clarence, who looked away. “Hey, um, Clarence, I’m sorry…” Aaron said. I shouldn’t have made fun of you for not liking heights… I don’t want to be a jerk, so I’ll make it up to you?”

    Clarence nodded, understanding but not ready to forgive Aaron. He looked up at the green, blue and purple flags that lined the streets as they faded into the distance.

    With a sigh of relief, Aaron looked back out the window. He said what he needed to and was ready to face whatever was to come his way next. His eyes gazed over the woods and the rivers the carriage flew over.

    Opposite him, Mylious closed his eyes and leaned against Lady De Jou’s shoulder. With a gentle whisper, he said, “I’m scared. Will you come with me, Miss?” Almost immediately, she squeezed his shoulder. “Thank you…” he switched to Elkrat and whispered, “Aaron? Clarence?”

    “Yes, of course,” Clarence said. “If it makes you happy and makes you feel more confident… wait… you didn’t stutter…?” Clarence added.

    Lady De Jou nodded at Clarence. “He’s calm and taking deep breaths. Let him sleep for an hour or two. It would help if you got some sleep, too. You look exhausted, and you won’t have to look out the window.” She lifted her other arm and smiled as Clarence scooted across the seat and rested against her.

    Aaron shuffled closer to Lord De Jou and yawned. “Sir, is it okay if I sleep too?”

    “Yes, young Piscar.” Lord De Jou wrapped his arm around Aaron’s shoulder and pulled him close. “Erik, do you want to sleep too?”

    “No sir, I just want to pet her, if that’s okay?” he answered, continuing to pet the ponyta in front of him. “She makes me feel so much better already… is this normal?” He smiled as Lord De Jou raised an eyebrow but nodded. “I will make her strong, I promise.”

    “I know you will. I know…” Lord De Jou responded.

    “Oh, Thomas,” Lady De Jou whispered to herself with a smile, seeing her husband talking to Erik, who seemed to have warmed up to him. “He isn’t the same boy we met hours ago. He’s so happy now, not angry or scared.”

    Lord De Jou closed his eyes and started to psychically produce visions to prepare himself for Lord Elite Piscar’s upcoming arrival.
    #7 May 16, 2024
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2024
  8. Cavespider_17

    Giratina Egg
    (Giratina Egg)
    Level 2
    Oct 23, 2023
    Trainer Card - Cave Theme


    Sunday, 2nd January, 1966

    The carriage landed on the pad on the outskirts of Virto, and the door opened. The water town bustled with the sounds of the people walking the streets and talking. Lord De Jou stepped out onto the wooden dock and handed the pilot some coins before gesturing for the teenagers and his wife to follow.

    As Aaron stepped onto the wooden dock, he felt the wood move beneath his feet. He wobbled and grabbed hold of the rope holding the dock together. He took a deep breath and looked across Lake Estok. The water-type pokémon swimming beneath his feet and all across the lake while the citizens surfed, swam and rowed over the water. Footsteps caught his attention, and Aaron fell back.

    “I brought the crutches you asked for. I will leave them here,” a voice said.

    With an understanding nod, Lord De Jou picked them up and carefully tucked the wooden crutches underneath Mylious’s arms. He moved Mylious’s fingers so they were wrapped around the handles firmly.

    The serene sound of the lake water splashing all around them was overwhelmingly calming, and the warmth of the Colran weather leaned on them like a new friend. Beads of sweat had started to form on the teenager’s foreheads.

    “Sir, it’s too hot,” Aaron said, hoping the Lord Elite would do something to help. However, his words were ignored, as Lady De Jou and Lord De Jou’s attention was still drawn to helping his friend. “Sir?” Aaron repeated.

    “Hmm?” Lady De Jou responded with her gentle voice. “What’s the matter, Aaron?” she asked, her concern evident. “Oh, are you feeling too warm, sweetie? Well, why don’t we find a cool spot for lunch and enjoy the puppet show? After lunch, we can join in the festival activities while we wait for your dad.” Her words were filled with warmth and understanding, and she hoped to offer comfort to the overheated teenager.

    Aaron nodded, his brain racing with curiosity. “I am surprised it isn’t snowy here… or even cold. It’s winter.” Aaron cautiously made his way towards the non-floating walkway, his steps unsteady until his feet found purchase on the more stable planted dock. “That’s better.” Aaron's spirits lifted as he bounced on the tips of his toes before jogging over to one of the wooden benches by the water’s edge. He slid under the large rectangular green-coloured parasol and sat down. He let out a massive sigh of relief as the shade coated him. “Better. Oh wow! Is that a pink squawkabilly? I’ve only ever seen blue ones…”

    “That’s right, Aaron. Here in Colran, squawkabilly are green and pink, sometimes yellow. In Elktan, they are mostly blue and yellow. You know what else is a different colour in Colran?” Lord De Jou asked, sitting down next to him.

    “No sir,” Aaron said.

    “The gastrodon and shellos, sir,” Clarence said, sitting opposite Aaron. He let out a deep breath as the shade coasted over him. The squawks of the pink squawkabilly were loud but not unpleasant. Clarence leaned against the wooden table. “Are they dangerous, sir?”

    “Mostly the pink squawkabilly feed on water type pokémon like arrokuda, velvuza. Some will go for popplio or even omanyte.” Lord De Jou shuffled over and noticed Erik was sitting next to his wife on the other side of the table, still petting the ponyta. “Why don’t you boys let your pokémon out? We will pay for food for them and you.” He smiled at them. “You can have whatever you want. Here is some money for the stands.”

    The glowing red of the poké balls consumed the small area as Aaron’s Samurott and Salamence popped out. I don’t think letting an Onix in a crowded space would be a good idea. Aaron saw Erik’s ponyta and houndour sit by the table. Mylious’s joltik sat atop his head, happily squeaking and jumping away, while Clarence’s alakazam’s ears twitched out of curiosity. Before Aaron could stop him, his samurott dived into the water, splashing around.

    “Go on, boys, get what you want and come and sit back down with us.” Lady De Jou kissed her husband and walked over to one of the stalls.

    Aaron followed her. The vibrant stalls and their colourful overhangs caught his attention. The smell of the food wafted into his nose.

    “Are you okay, sweetie?” Lady De Jou asked, her hands carrying dishes of what looked like potatoes shaped into twists and some fried velvuza.

    “There’s just… so much… I’ve never had any of this stuff…” He saw Mylious, Erik, and Clarence also looking around, unsure of what to do. “Wait, I have an idea… Clarence, Erik, Mylious, what if we get something different each and share it? That way, we will get to try all of it! If I get a big dish of those potato twist things and some fried velvuza, Mylious can get some qwilfish on sticks and some of those bitter berry dips, oh and Clarence could get some amoongus and alcremie things, and er Erik can get some drinks!” Aaron bounced on his toes excitedly.

    “Always the tactician…” Erik muttered. “Sounds good. You know, you aren’t always useless, little brother.” He smiled again, petting his ponyta and wandering off to get some drinks from the stalls.

    Aaron walked up to the stall and said, “Er… one of er… ‘putshavirllgrosté’ please.” His tongue twisted over the word and he almost forgot to include the letter ‘r’, however, the young woman running the stall gave him a warm smile back, and served him a large portion of the twisted potatoes and vevulza. Aaron cupped his hands as he held the hot food in its casing and carried it back to the table.

    He quickly placed the food down and sat next to Lord De Jou and his brother, Erik. The smell that was wasted from the food was more pungent now, and his stomach rumbled. He picked up a potato twist and took a bite out of it. The bitter-spicy blend danced on his tongue, and he took another bite.

    “Good?” Lord De Jou asked.

    “Can I have some, please, Aaron?” Clarence asked.

    “M-me too… it looks nice… and I didn’t really l-like the qwilfish… I-I am sorry…” Mylious whispered.

    “Huh?” Erik said, screwing his face up. You wouldn’t… all you do is stutter and cry. I’m better than you and I… he sighed. “Here, try the velvuza instead…” he muttered, trying to keep his temper in check, even though it bubbled beneath the surface.

    “That’s right, sweetie, you need to eat if you want to get your arm re-branded how you want it to look.” Lady De Jou handed the honey juice drink to Mylious and another to Erik, Aaron and Clarence.

    Aaron scooped up some potato twists and placed them on his plate. There, now my friends get more than I do, and that’s fine. It’s my fault we are in this mess anyway. His fingers twitched, and he picked up a qwilfish on a stick, taking a bite out of it. The taste of the usually prickly water type flooded his mouth, and he wasn’t sure what to make of it. That was… interesting. I don’t know if I like it or not. He put it down and took a piece of the amoongus, and the squishy pokémon taste filled his mouth. “Better,” he said before taking some durin berry spread and piled it onto some of the potato twists. “Colran food is interesting. I still prefer Elktan food, but I wouldn’t mind having some Colran food now and then.”

    Behind the sitting group, the puppeteer was gathering a small crowd, catching Mylious’s eye, and he whispered, “What’s that?” Relieved he didn’t stutter over his words this time, he watched on curiously.

    “Oh, they are going to do the story of the Fire and Ice brothers… the very abridged version anyway.” Lady De Jou noticed Mylious’s curiosity growing through expression. “We can watch with you if you want?”

    Mylious nodded. “Do you think they will t-track us using our holo-d-devices on our arms?”

    Lord De Jou turned to watch the puppets. “Perhaps, however, that’s okay. We will keep an eye of it.”

    The puppeteer raised the two puppets and wiggled them around. The first, in red, depicted the Fire Brother, and the one in white, the Ice Brother.

    “Farewell, brother! Explore our great island, and tell me what you find!” the puppet of the Fire Brother said.

    The teenagers watched on curiously, not understanding everything but giggling at the puppets hitting each other with flimsy cloth swords. The younger children in the front watching the show started to cheer for the puppets as they hit each other, and the puppets of their pokémon, a hydreigon and an abomnasnow, also began to hit each other with cloth swords.

    “Oh no, whatever will I do now!” the puppet of the Fire Brother exclaimed. “My brother is dead, and my people hate me.”

    “Not all your people,” the puppet with the scar said, almost too cheerful to be taken seriously.

    Aaron tilted his head slightly as the Colrat words went over his head. What is it saying? Why is it so happy? I don’t even get what this show is about, but it is pretty funny.

    Lord De Jou sighed and looked at Aaron and the other teens. “Well, Colran didn’t exist until the Fire Brother made it. You see, Colran’s history is minimal compared to Elktan’s rich and complex history. We were forged from the failings of a Kilgorese ruler.” He crossed his arms and closed his eyes. “Although, the Kilgorese saw it more as a snatch of land and weren’t too happy about the whole thing.”

    Erik paused his petting of his ponyta, who scowled back at him. Unable to form the words in Colrat, he resorted back to Elkrat, “How do you know? Aren’t you the ruler of Colran and our enemy?”

    The Colran Ruler’s eyebrow twitched at Erik’s words, but he looked at his own hands before reaching for the empty glasses on the table. “When I was a young boy, younger than you, a very bad man was doing very bad things. My parents knew I was psychic from a very young age, and the very bad man was purging and recruiting psychics to serve under him. So my parents took me to Yaer City, stashed me on a boat heading for Kilgor and sent me away. I was seven years old. I grew up in a place far from home. I was treated like an outsider, almost as bad as an off-islander. When I came back, the bad man was still doing very bad things, and Colran and, technically, Elktan didn’t exist. I forgot the name he called his nation. I suppose I didn’t care.”

    “And then you and Lord Elite Hamilton beat the shit out of him? Right?” Erik exclaimed, hoping to hear about the battle. “Was your army big? Did the Kilgorese help you? What about our dad?”

    “It wasn’t that simple. He wasn’t a Lord Elite back then. He was the bad man’s servant. We had no army, only our pokémon – the battle is too gruesome to talk about here.” Lord De Jou sighed, turning his attention back to the puppets.

    Aaron tilted his head once again, filled with more curiosity. “How come we’ve never heard about this bad guy? Was it that Ghetz guy?”

    “Some parts of history are too painful for people to want to remember – others bury it to avoid repeating the mistake via fanatics. Some people are too traumatised to want to talk about it. Tyrants are bad news.” Lord De Jou clenched his fist. “I hope your father stops before I stop him.”

    Silence rang out, only broken in part by the water slushing against the dock. Even the loud squawkabilly that had been chattering and squawking throughout the play had gone silent. It was as if the whole world was waiting for the man to say something else.

    At the end of the table, Clarence tightened his ponytail and got up from his seat. The eyes of the others wandered over to him, hoping he’d break the silence. However, he bowed his head respectably before sitting back down.

    Aaron waited a few more moments before saying, “I’d like to hear the story before my dad comes here if that’s okay…” He stood up and stepped out from under the parasol. His green hair shimmered and almost looked an odd shade of yellow in the sunlight. “Um, sir, can we do some festival stuff, please? I’d really like to understand more about Colran and stuff. Especially since I assume ice skating is off the list of activities…” He smiled, hoping to lift the mood around him.

    The sounds of the arrows thudding into the targets filled the air of the small park as those waiting for a turn whispered and chatted under the single tree in the middle. Beside the tree stood an iron water pump whose tank was being refilled by a blastoise. The blastoise’s brown and grey shell looked almost slick, and its grey water cannons were quickly refilling the tank. Its blue body made it stand out among the green flags that lined the benches and stands. Even the flowerbeds refused to show a sign of blue.

    Another arrow thudded into the target, catching Aaron and Erik’s attention. The two teenagers walked quickly over the grass to get a closer look. A Lord and Lady had both drawn their bows and were shooting at the pokémon cut-outs, which left Aaron stunned. This is pretty cool. I bet Dad wouldn’t let anything like this happen. He leaned in, and his elbows pressed against the wooden fence that was stopping anyone from stepping into the path of an arrow.

    Erik looked down at the floor and let out a sigh.

    “Hey, Erik, let’s… are you okay?” Aaron said. He extended a hand to his older brother.

    “Seeing all the Colran doing this stuff, and seeing their parents helping them… ugh… I wish Dad had actually done some of this stuff with us. You know? I have my first pokémon now. Mine. I caught her on my own… I wasn’t just given her. Now this?” He scowled and slumped down by the fence.

    Aaron screwed up his nose. That made no sense whatsoever. A few eyes locked onto them both, but for the most part, Aaron felt as if their nationality wasn’t going to be an issue, so with a confident expression, he said, “Hey, Erik, let’s have a go. I’m sure they won’t mind helping us.”

    “It’s… that’s not the point… the point is Dad clearly doesn’t care about us – he only cares about having an heir and his current state as Ruler of Elktan. I hate the fact that the Ruler of Colran is less of a dickhead.” Erik buried his face in his hands. A hand rested on his shoulder, but the overwhelming realisation left Erik frozen with sadness.

    “Come on, Erik…” Aaron said, walking over to the group of Colran hunters who were running the archery game. In his best Colrat accent, he said, “Can we have a go, please?”

    The hunters’ eyes brushed over them with suspicion. However, they nodded hesitantly. “You shot an arrow before, Elkran?” they asked with a little snarl.

    “No sir, no miss,” Aaron said as he stepped back with uncertainty. He could feel their cold glares dart over him once more. “We… we just want to have fun. Are we allowed to take part in this game?” he asked again, softening his voice.

    “They can play unless you have an issue with them. In which case, you have an issue with me,” Lord Bradford said.

    “Y-yes, my Lord,” they responded, stepping to the side.

    When the flaming tauros shit did he get here? Aaron thought. “T-thank you, sir.” Aaron stepped up onto the shooting gallery starting line and skimmed over the three bows available to choose from. “What do I pick?” he asked himself. His focus broke at the sound of Erik’s footsteps approaching the second starting line.

    “So, you two are going for the grand prize?” Lord Bradford asked with a smug grin.

    “Grand prize?” Aaron asked back, reaching for one of the bows.

    “That. That is one fine bow.” Lord Bradford pointed over to the bow on the stand behind the hunters. His branded lower arm was visible as his sleeve fell. He cautiously approached the hunters, stepped past them, and examined the bow. “Is that tropius wood? No, it looks too light…”

    “Trevenant wood and the string is made from drampa hair,” the older hunter corrected, adjusting their grey cap and jacket.

    Aaron’s smile widened as he looked at the pattern on the bow. “It looks nice… I wish I could shoot a bow. Then I’d have an excuse to want something like that.”

    Aaron? I will win that bow, Erik thought, pulling back the bow on his side of the gallery and awkwardly attaching an arrow to the string. “I’m going to win it. Just watch.” The string tensed as he squinted. With a full exhale, he released the string, and the bow wobbled as the arrow shot forward toward the cardboard cutout of the sawsbuck, just skimming over the top of its antlers. “Fuck it,” Erik shouted and reached for another arrow. I only have four left. Come on…

    Aaron pulled the bow he had picked up back, his heart racing from being able to try something new. His hand trembled from the tension, and he released the arrow. It shot at the sawsbuck, but similarly to Erik’s arrow, it shot over the top and into the wall. “My arms hurt…” Aaron whispered.

    “Ha, yes, I suppose they will if you’ve never shot a bow before,” Lord Bradford responded. Thomas, these kids… are you sure you don’t want to keep them and use them against Ellio? He leaned against the fence as he watched Aaron and Erik pick up another arrow each. “Let me give you some advice?”

    “Sure,” Aaron said, looking to the Lord.

    “Straighten your back when you fire. It will make aiming easier instead of slumping over.” Lord Bradford took his bow off his back and demonstrated.

    Erik nodded. Using his superior strength, he pulled the string back with his arrow and released it. The arrow soared slightly faster than before, and this time, it struck the rear of the cutout. “Nice!” he shouted. “I did it!”

    Aaron smiled. Great job, Erik. Now it's my turn. He took a deep breath and drew back the string with the arrow. His muscles tensed, and his hands shook as he fired. The arrow wobbled and flopped down before reaching the sawsbuck cutout. He looked down at the arrow, and his heart sank. “I can’t do it…”

    “Going to give up because you can’t do it immediately? That’s typical of an Elkran,” Lord Bradford said.

    “Oh yeah?” Erik blurted out. “You think you are better? Why don’t you prove it?”

    Lord Bradford shrugged and picked up the larger bow. He pulled the bow back and tilted his cap back before releasing the arrows again and again. Each arrow struck each cardboard cutout squarely in the head. “Perhaps don’t challenge one of the best archers in the Colran Guard to a shoot-out?” He smirked. “As no one else is waiting, I’m sure these hunters won’t mind you practising your shots. I will help you. Lord Elite De Jou will be back soon.”

    “Oh, I believe he is with your blue-haired friend, er… Camerence?” Lord Bradford said.

    “Clarence,” Aaron corrected and let the Colran Lord help him adjust his positioning so he could fire another arrow.
    #8 May 22, 2024
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2024
  9. Cavespider_17

    Giratina Egg
    (Giratina Egg)
    Level 2
    Oct 23, 2023
    Trainer Card - Cave Theme

    The Differences Between

    Sunday, 2nd January, 1966

    The afternoon sun’s rays intensified, and the teenagers started to sweat more. The soft waves from the surfers on Estok Lake splashed against the walkways, and the winds gently blew through the town.

    “Erik! Aaron!” Lady De Jou called out but stopped in her tracks. You’ve bonded with them, haven’t you, Bradford?

    Lord Bradford laughed as Aaron screwed up his face and stuck out his tongue as he pulled the bow back. “If that expression helps you hit the target, why not?”

    Aaron let go of the arrow. “What do you mean?” he asked, tilting his head, to which Erik stuck his tongue out and screwed up his face. “I don’t make that face!”

    “Oh, my Lady Elite…” Lord Bradford said, about to bow before seeing her raised hand. “I was just keeping an eye on them. They’ve been good. Boys, I think Lady De Jou wants to take you to the painter.”

    Aaron nodded and noticed his brother looking back at the gallery once more. “You coming, Erik?”

    Erik hesitated; his gaze fixated on the prize bow. “I really want to win that bow…”

    Lord Bradford raised an eyebrow, and before Lady De Jou could answer, he said, “Kid, it’s 3 PM. You still have plenty of time. Go and have your face painted; I am sure it will still be here when you get back. However, I shall be the one taking the bow home. After all, no one will beat my high score. Not even you.” He grinned competitively.

    Erik shrugged at the Colran Lord before jogging over to his younger brother. This place is so strange. Even the Lords here are weird. “Where did Lord De Jou go?” Erik asked as his ponyta trotted along beside him.

    “He’s gone to take some time to himself. He doesn’t like to be treated like a ruler, especially during the festivities. The traditions catch up to him a lot – and they remind him of something he wants to forget.” Lady De Jou flicked her hair out of her face and sat down on a bench near some stumps and a small tarp-covered stand. “You boys are old enough to be allowed adult warrior markings – as is tradition in Colran – or you could still have the one for children, oh, except Erik, he’s too old.” Lady De Jou took Mylious’s hand and helped him sit next to her. “So, you could have your faces painted as a luxray, a monferno… any Colran pokémon you’d like, or the warrior markings. The painter will decide which markings best suit you. Oh, and don’t worry if they get wet. They take a while to come out.”

    The painter came out from behind the stall. She was in a traditional Colran outfit and covered in the furs of a ninetales. The tails draped down over her shoulders, and she sat in the middle of the stumps. The furs covered her hair, but Aaron could just about make out a black curl of hair escaping the clutches of the outfit.

    “Can I be an adult, please?” Aaron asked, unable to think of the exact phrase in Colrat.

    The painter nodded at him and gestured to the wooden stump with her fingers, which were laden with a multitude of paint colours.

    Aaron sat down on the wooden stump and fidgeted with his fingers as the woman sat opposite him. She dipped the tip of her brush in the black mixture, which he dared not ask about. His vision narrowed as the brush moved closer, pressing against the slither of skin in between his eyebrows. His nose started to tickle as the woman painted the black substance down his nose, stopping at the tip before picking up a second brush, this time dipped in red. Aaron’s leg began to twitch. However, the woman placed a hand on his arm.

    “It’s okay. I am nearly done,” she said, dragging the red brush across the bridge of his nose, leaving three distinct red markings. “I need your arms,” she said.

    “Oh, um… okay…” Aaron said, unsure. “Why are you holding three?” he asked as she picked up a pink, blue and black-tipped brush.

    “You aren’t from Colran, are you?” she said, trying to hide her suspicion. “Well, the pink represents cresselia, the black represents darkrai, and the blue represents giratina. We draw a ring around your wrists to show the gods are looking out for you. Like this…” she added, painting the three loops around each of his wrists.

    “Oh, I see… that’s really cool,” Aaron said with a smile.

    “Can I go next, please?” Clarence asked Lady De Jou. With her nod, he sat down on the stump eagerly. “It looks so cool. Can I look like Aaron, please? Er… my friend?” he asked, pointing to Aaron.

    The woman shrugged and said, “Your roles in life are not the same.” She turned around and picked up a brush and dipped it in the blue substance. Beginning, as she did before, at his eyebrows, she carefully painted three lines heading down towards the tip of his nose. She picked up the red brush, but before applying it to his skin, she drew two blue lines on each of his cheeks before only crossing through them once with the red. “Now, for the three loops of life.” She picked up the blue, pink and black brushes and painted the three loops around his wrists.

    “Thank you,” Clarence said, lowering his head.

    “Kitlix, we need more paint!” the woman called out, and at her beckoned call, a smeragle stepped out from behind the stall. His tail’s tip was coated in the different coloured paints that were being mixed. With a sticking out tongue, he nodded at her.

    “I don’t believe in your gods. There is only one god, and that’s giratina!” Erik snapped. “Sorry…” he quickly said, noticing Lady De Jou’s expression. “Um, can I have only those colours, please? Um… actually, can I… be the same colours as my new friend, please?” Erik said, rubbing his arm.

    Erik? Since when were you indecisive? Aaron swung his legs off the bench as his brother sat down in front of the painter.

    “Of course. Kitlix! I need some pastel pink and green!” the painter called to the smeargle. “Okay, I’m going to paint your friend first while Kitlix makes the paint up.” She placed a hand on Erik’s arm and squeezed him gently before getting up and sitting next to Mylious on the bench.

    The smeargle stuck his tongue once again and swivelled his multicoloured tail around. His small, pale, furred, beret-topped head tilted slightly, and the dark brown fur under his eyes intensified. He slipped back behind the stall without a sound.

    “What about you?” the painter asked.

    Mylious clenched his fists and tightened his shoulders. “I’m sorry. I-I-I don’t b-believe in gods. I… I don’t w-w-want anything on m-my face… if that’s okay…” He squeezed his eyes shut and hoped she would say it was okay. “I-I don’t want this…” he whispered and looked to Lady De Jou.

    Lady De Jou’s expression softened, and she pulled him against her shoulder. “It’s okay. You don’t have to. You don’t have to do anything you don’t want to.”

    “I’m going to watch the battle. Is that okay?” Aaron asked and walked over to the small metal barrier and wooden platform on the water without waiting for an answer. That’s a lot of whirlpools. The sound of the flowing water drowned out the announcer, but it was an unmistakable sight. Lord De Jou, the Colran Lord Elite, had stepped out onto the battlefield.

    “Come on, Bradford, you and your group are going to give this a go, huh?” Lord De Jou said, grabbing a wooden quarterstaff with his left hand and taking a poké ball from his pocket with his right. Three on one? That seems a little unbalanced.” He smiled. Clarence! Aaron! Get into the battlefield. Lord Bradford needs assistance.

    Lord De Jou stepped back and took off his hat and jacket, throwing them to the crowd, eliciting a scream. He rested his fingers on his head as the crowd gathered, and the energy around the battlefield buzzed louder than a swarm of yanma.

    “Come, young Piscar. You and your friend are about to experience a real battle.” Lord Bradford picked up a quarterstaff in each hand, offering one to Aaron and Clarence. “Pick your pokémon. We will handle the rest. If your pokémon faints, or if you get knocked out of the ring, you lose.” Lord Bradford gestured to the white, chalky ring inside the battlefield.

    “Right…” Aaron said, taking the quarterstaff. “I know who I’ll use.”

    “Me too.” Clarence reached into his pocket and pulled out a poké ball.

    Lord De Jou tossed two poké balls out onto the field. With a thud on the wooden ground, the platform wobbled in the water. Sand spat up out of nowhere, and a roar echoed all around them. The immediate silence was quickly interrupted by a second roar and a flash of electricity.

    “Lord De Jou sends out his tyranitar and his luxray!” the announcer called out from the stands. “We have some wonderful numbers for you all on these pokémon.”

    “Yes, we do, David. The tyranitar on the field right now is a little smaller than average and has the ability sand stream, whipping up a powerful sandstorm on the battlefield. Now, all of you just joining the battle arena have absolutely nothing to worry about. The protective shield around the field will keep you all safe from any wild attacks. Those taking part in the battle, however, will have to deal with a genuine threat. Lord Elite De Jou’s tyranitar comes in at 197 kilograms and is 1.7 meters tall. That can go up to 2.2 meters and 220 kilograms if mega evolved. What a slam! Our wonderful Lord Elite’s luxray is one of the most iconic pokémon known throughout Colran, coming in at 1.6 meters and weighing 50 kilograms. Is that intimidate? It looks like it! If he chooses to mega-evolve his luxray, something special will happen – you will all have to wait and see how the battle pans out. I am on the edge of my seat, Usek!”

    Aaron spun around, skimming over the crowd to try and find the announcers. “Fuck…” he muttered. “Okay, let’s go!” Aaron tossed his poké ball onto the boards, and out popped a purple gas cloud.

    “The young Piscar sends out a haunter? Ha, ha. That’s not a favourable matchup at all. Does the Elkran heir even understand matchups? I suppose we will find out soon.” The announcer coughed and cleared his throat. “Haunter’s ability is already on full display! However, we can guess the size of this floating ghost is around 1.2 meters. A very underwhelming entry into the battlefield!”

    Aaron clenched his fists and, at the top of his voice, shouted, “That doesn’t mean shit!”

    Clarence stepped forward. “Ignore that guy! He’s trying to get into your head.” He threw his poké ball onto the board. The mawile appeared in front of him, spinning her large jaws around, snapping at the tyranitar hungrily. “You can do this, Aaron.”

    “Is that a mawile? Damn, that kid is on point. We rarely see a mawile. What can you tell us about them, Usek?” the announcer said.

    “Well, David, mawile is a steel and fairy type. Not many people cross them and get to see another day. That’s something. That looks like another intimidate on the field. This mawile looks pretty big, perhaps a meter tall. And… oh my, it is 18 kilograms!” The second announcer paused before saying, “I wonder what other pokémon will enter the fray. Lord De Jou reaches for his next two pokémon! Wait, is our Lord Elite really going to take four others, including a Lord and his own Lord Interrogator?”

    Aaron stepped back. The Lord Interrogator is here? He swallowed hard and took another step back. A hand gripped his shoulder, and he looked up. A young man with blond hair looked down at him.

    “Careful. Focus on the battle.” The man stepped to the side and tossed his poké ball three times before it slammed into the wooden platform.

    “That’s Lord Interrogator Phillipe’s ace! What do you think of that, Usek?” the commentator, referred to as David, asked.

    “Well, David, that’s one hell of a hydreigon. The average hydreigon is 1.8 meters and weighs in at 160 kilograms, but not this big boy. Oh no, this big boy is a whopping 2.5 meters and comes in at around 350 kilograms. That’s more than your average hippodown, torterra and even skeledirge!”

    “I wouldn’t want to be slammed by that!” the commentator, referred to as Usek, shouted out over the microphone.

    Aaron muttered under his breath, “Me neither…” The wooden planks beneath his feet started to rock more violently under the flapping of the large hydreigon’s wings.

    “Time for pokémon number two.” Lord Interrogator Phillipe stomped his foot down and hurled the poké ball forward with tremendous force and spin, leaving a mark on the wooden planks as it slammed into it.

    “Outcomes the second powerhouse and crowd favourite, his nidoking! What can you tell us about this particular nidoking, Usek?” David asked as the crowd’s roar drowned out the microphone.

    With a little laugh, David looked at the data being gathered from the tiny sensors under the boards. “Well, let me tell you a story, this nidoking is special indeed. It was, in fact, our Lord Interrogator’s first pokémon – now, isn’t that something? Coming in at a overbearing 2.2 meters, that’s right, 2.2 meters, and 107 kilograms…”

    The crowd let out a gasp and a cheer at the pure size of the creature. Aaron looked to his left and saw how large it indeed was. Sickness sunk into his stomach as he and his small haunter were sandwiched between two abnormally large pokémon. The sounds all around him were choking him. The crowd was so excited that there was no escape. He looked down at the wooden planks under his feet as they wobbled again and again. Minutes passed, and his head echoed from all the sound on repeat. I am going to die here. I am going to die here…

    Aaron’s daze was cut out by a high-pitched squeal coming from the speakers above his head.

    “Now our Lord Elite’s ace is on the field! This is incredible! There is no way he’s going to do it! Is this going to be an eight versus eight? Will the platform hold?!” David shouted.

    “Take it easy, David. Here are some stats for you avid watchers in the crowd. We see you all… Lord De Jou’s ace is his gallade, coming in at just under 1.7 meters and 55 kilograms, this pokémon is a powerhouse of its own. With access to mega evolution and the fighting stone, this pokémon will be a force to be reckoned with.” Usek leaned over the microphone and said, “Remember to keep an eye out for those tied to the prophecy and pay respects to our glorious ancestors!”

    Words that made Lord De Jou huff a little. If we wanted to do prophecy purging, we should go back to the dark ages. He clenched his fists. It isn’t their fault if they get picked.

    “Scovillain! We have Lord De Jou’s scovillain on the field! What is super special about scovillain is the split mega evolution. One converts it into a fire and a dragon type, and the other a grass and a dragon type. Unlike volcarona, the core mega-stone is not restricted to its flavour at birth.” Usek leaned back on the commentator’s desk, flicking his black hair back. “You know, in the big sporting leagues, they call us the scovillain.”

    “That’s right, Usek, they do. Except I am the cool fire head, and you are the boring grass one. Moving on, let’s see what else we have entering the battlefield!” David said with a chuckle. “I’m sure it will be a fantastical battle!”

    Aaron knelt and turned away from the action. “I can’t do this.”

    Lord Bradford crouched down beside him, and with a calm voice, he said, “Young Piscar, let me give you some advice out there. We are a team, yes, but you focus on your battle. Pick a pokémon to attack and give it your all. Leave the quarterstaff fights to us, stronger and better Lords.” He got back up and looked across at the feraligatr and hydrapple that had just been sent out onto the battlefield, along with the Aegislash. “Alright, let’s give it our best shot.” He pressed the buttons on his poké balls and out poured the cinderace, flicking its white ears and bouncing fire on its large bunny-like feet, while his Muk almost slipped in between the cracks on the wooden platform, forgetting its viscosity for a moment. With a roar, his sceptile stepped to the side.

    “There are so many pokémon. I’m not a good leader, unlike Erik, and I’m not the best battler either…” Aaron whispered in Elkrat.

    “Where the fuck is this coming from, kid?” Lord Bradford said in Elkrat back to him, taking him by surprise. “Look, I’ve known you a day, and you have always been the one in the lead – get up and battle. If you lose, so what? It’s just a bit of fun.” He offered Aaron a hand.

    Aaron reached up and took the Colran Lord’s hand. “Sorry, you are right. Let’s do this.”

    This will be a good practice, young Piscar—a good practice for your destiny. Lord De Jou waited, his hands wrapped around the quarterstaff. The moment the siren goes off, it begins.
    #9 May 29, 2024
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2024
  10. Cavespider_17

    Giratina Egg
    (Giratina Egg)
    Level 2
    Oct 23, 2023
    Trainer Card - Cave Theme

    Glimpse Into Reality

    Sunday, 2nd January, 1966

    The ground beneath Aaron’s feet shook, and the water’s sloshing stole his attention for another moment. His fingers could barely maintain their grip on the quarterstaff. The pokémon began to move towards their target. He looked across the battlefield at the Colran ruler, whose expression had not changed. A stark realisation crossed his mind, and he stepped back. Oh no.

    Lord De Jou’s eyes turned pink, and his hair started to move on its own. With a slight flick of his right ankle, he kicked up off the ground into a low hover. He took the quarterstaff into his mouth and held it tightly with his teeth, leaving his hands free. He turned them upright to face the sky.

    Lord Bradford rushed toward him, his quarterstaff in his right hand and his cinderace beside him. “Damn it! Sir, do something!” he called out to Lord Interrogator Phillipe, shouting over the energy that was being formed around the Lord Elite.

    “I need not stop it. I can win despite our differences in strength. Let him use his powers. Show these Elkran why Colran is supreme.” He glanced over at Aaron and Clarence and placed his hands behind his back.

    Now, now, Kinhixo, your youth and arrogance may be your folly. Lord De Jou threw his arms back, releasing a vibrant pink wave of energy. Behind him, his pokémon started to glow, warp and transform.

    “He did it!” Usek called out over the microphone. “Multiple mega evolutions at once!”

    David nodded at his colleague’s excitement. “He used his empathic bond to mega evolve his pokémon without mega stones. For those of you in the crowd who do not know, this ability is incredibly rare in general and is often associated with powerful psychics.”

    “What the fuck?” Aaron snapped at the Lord Interrogator before looking down. “Sorry, Lord Interrogator…” he muttered. However, the man was gone already.

    “Head in the game, son,” Lord Bradford said.

    Lord Interrogator Phillipe sprung forward, grabbed hold of his hydreigon’s wing and pulled himself onto her back. The large dragon pokémon flapped her tri-wings, catapulting them both towards the Lord Elite. No need to mega evolve just yet, he thought, as he pulled his quarterstaff back and swung forward. “Ha!” he shouted out, unphased by the ongoing sandstorm.

    The mega chandelure phased back to avoid the strike from the quarterstaff, spinning his black and twisted body around before his body amassed a large black and purple ball of energy. His eyes locked on to the large hydreigon and the Lord Interrogator on her back.

    Good move, Kinhixo. You have learned so much, Lord Interrogator, Lord Elite De Jou thought. His eyes locked briefly onto the hydreigon, who dived back down behind Lord Interrogator Phillipe’s aegislash for protection.

    The large shadow ball darted forward, cut through the air and collided with the defensive form’s shield. The aegislash let out a cry of victory, blinking its single purple eye and waving its green tassels around.

    Clarence raised his arm to block the sand stream from entering his eyes. “I don’t get it!” he called out. “Why not tank the hit or try to dodge it and counterattack‽” To his horror, a long blue tail appeared through the sandstorm, aimed for his head. He jumped back, wobbling on his feet. That feraligatr… It looks like it is a water and ice type. His eyes glanced over at the ice skull that had covered the feraligatr’s head, and the red fins that once would sway in the water were now solid and ice-blue. “Mitix, use bite!” Clarence called out.

    The mawile swung around, opened her large jaws on top of her head and snapped wildly at the feraligatr’s tail.

    “Calling out one’s commands can put one at a disadvantage!” Lord Elite De Jou called out. “You are psychic, boy. Use your mind! Or find another way of giving out orders. After all, I can read you like a scripture.” He ran forward with speed, despite his age, and moved into a more spacious area.

    The feraligatr waved its tail in the air once more, side-swiping Clarence’s mawile with aqua tail.

    The mawile staggered backwards, losing her footing. Her yellow coat by her tiny black feet waved in the air as she hurtled toward the barrier and into Lord Bradford’s sceptile.

    “Mitix!” Clarence shouted, rushing over. However, Lord Bradford's hand yanked on his collar, pulling him back.

    Lord Elite De Jou’s luxray sprung from seemingly nowhere, exposing the sandstorm’s power. The mega luxray’s jaws clamped down on themselves, almost disappointed not to get a chunk out of the sceptile or Clarence. The pokémon’s once electric yellow eyes were swirling with newfound darkness, and the dimmed coat emphasised its type change. The creature’s tail had split, revealing dark energy.

    “Pay attention!” Lord Bradford shouted. Remind me why there are kids on the battlefield… He clenched his right fist, and the ring on his fourth finger started to glow.

    “I get it…” Aaron muttered under his breath. Lord Interrogator Phillipe sacrificed his aegislash’s freedom to attack and forced it to take two pokémon on at once because he has faith in his aegislash. Also, it would free himself and his hydreigon to move around the battlefield unrestricted. The downside to his is… Aaron glanced over at the tyranitar, who was dancing and chanting. As it swayed its green-brown body from side to side, the extended parts of its body swung around, too, threatening to clip any individual who got too close.

    Lord Interrogator Phillipe must have a plan… Aaron looked at his haunter, who had been cowering behind him. “It’s okay, we g-“ Aaron swivelled to see the luxray charging him down, lit up with electrical power. “Wild charge!” Aaron called out and stepped in front of his haunter to protect him.

    The charge from the luxray was zapped away, and Aaron swung the wooden quarterstaff with all his might, striking the luxray across the face. A thud rang out as the luxray hit the floor and rolled back up onto her black and blue-grey paws. She shook her mane and snapped her jaws at the sceptile.

    “That right there is lighting rod! The ability to take electrical attacks, remove their effectiveness and boost one’s strength! What do you think of that Usek?” David called out over the microphone.

    Can those two shut up? Aaron thought, gritting his teeth. “Do what you need to do!” he called out to his haunter. Aaron’s haunter nodded and faded into nothingness. His eyes scanned the sandstorm-infested battlefield as he clenched the quarterstaff tightly. Aaron inhaled a deep breath and closed his eyes. Calm. He focused on his breathing, trying to ignore the chaos around him. The slams of pokémon striking each other were almost too much for him to forget, but then a creepy sensation wafted over him as if he was being stalked. He turned around and swung his quarterstaff, striking something squarely in the mouth.


    “And it looks like Elkran’s future Lord Captain is in big trouble! But there’s a surprise. Who brings a pre-evolved to a Lord’s fight?” Usek jeered, and the crowd chanted. “Once again, it shows Elktan's failure. Remind me why this brat is even here?” He slammed his fist on the table, making David jump.

    The crowd started to chant a word Aaron didn’t understand, but he shook his head and kicked back as hard as he could. He could feel the sensation of the mega scovillain’s smaller grass type head biting into his shoulder through his clothes.

    “Fuck!” Aaron shouted out. Wait, this is the grass head, so… his eyes widened as he saw his broken quarterstaff. It’s sharp! With his fists, Aaron swung at the pokémon’s fire head. “Drop me, you bastard!” He punched as hard as he could, and desperation strained his voice.

    Suddenly, some smoke appeared, and the twisted, sharp claws of the haunter reappeared, slashing the cheek of the scovillain’s grass head.

    “Vekullt!” Aaron called out as he was dropped onto the wooden boards. The stomping sounds surrounded him, and he saw a large foot coming and crashing down towards him. He rolled back and out of the way, finding himself lost in the sandstorm once again. It’s starting to get dark…

    The tyranitar’s stomping feet made the boards wobble beneath the feet of anyone who touched the ground, as the sand stream from its body continued to run.

    The stomps sent shockwaves up through the floor, making Lord Bradford’s muk wobble. It reached out with its large, purple, toxic hand and jabbed forward. However, to its frustration, the gallade bounced out of the way and slashed through the air with its bladed arm. The muk let out a howl of pain as the psychic energy dug into its toxic flesh, making it attack itself.

    “That’s some critical damage to Lord Bradford’s muk!” David called out over the microphone. The crowd instinctively roared with excitement. “Who’d have thought we’d have the Lord Interrogator and Lord Elite battling here in our little festival stadium? The battlers had better be careful; night is just around the corner. In fact, the sunset is already here! In that sandstorm, the pitch-black darkness will make it far harder for them to see.”

    Usek chuckled into the microphone. “Don’t worry, beloved viewers. You’ll be able to see the action just fine thanks to a mixture of light screen, reflect and trick room.”

    “Piss off!” Aaron shouted, trying to get his bearings, knowing the commentators couldn’t hear him from their nice, cosy, safe position away from the action. As he glared at them, he heard the sound of fire in the distance. A brief glow from the scorching purple, orange and green flames made him swallow. Where are you, Vekullt?

    The mega chandelure’s fire spat up, scorching the wood around itself and the aegislash. The glass part of its body flared up, and it swivelled, building up fire energy to stripe the sword and shield pokémon with its flames. Its eyes glanced over at the tyranitar, closing in on the aegislash from behind, leaving it no choice but to fight both head-on.

    The aegislash gave a quick scan of the stormed-out area, hoping to find sight or sound of Lord Interrogator Phillipe. Unable to spot him, it took matters into its blade and slashed towards the tyranitar with unparalleled speed and precision.

    “Sacred sword lands a nasty blow on the mega tyranitar! I guess we now know why Lord Interrogator Phillipe is so revered as a member of the Guard. What stats can you give us about our amazing Lord Interrogator Phillipe, David?” Usek shouted into the microphone in an attempt to be louder than the crowd.

    “Well, Usek, Kinhixo Phillipe was born in 1943, making him one of the youngest ever Lord Interrogators – he is relatively new to his job. Despite his title, he is known for being empathetic and understanding towards his prisoners – but don’t like his friendly and kind demeanour fool you – he was the butcher of the Naelluix Affair. That’s right, folks! He single-handedly took out over fifty militia members from an off-shoot army. To top it off, he has access to the dark stone! That means all of his dark-type attacks can be boosted! He can also drain dark-type pokémon or manipulate dark energy to create a hellscape for anyone who dares to interfere! His hydreigon is his most famous pokémon, but his aegislash isn’t anything to forget.” David stood up and gestured as he spoke, getting the crowd even more riled up.

    Clarence caught a glimpse of the fight in the distance as the sandstorm whipped up into his eyes. When will this shit end? He raised his hand and created a small psychic field in front of his face. Better. Now that his face wasn’t being bombarded by grains of sand, he opened his eyes fully. His hands gripped his quarterstaff, and he ducked under the mega sceptile’s tail as it swung at the mega luxray. He took another step forward on the wooden planks, only for something to shoot up in front of his face. “Ice? Oh no…” Clarence clambered over the small ice structure that had broken through the wooden planks with a crunch. With a hand reached out, he psychically grabbed the feraligatr by its tail just before its large jaws could crush his mawile.

    Instinctively, Clarence’s mawile let out a delighted cry before swinging her heavy jaw around and striking the feraligatr in the face, again and again. Despite the mega feraligatr’s thrashing with its tail, Clarence focused. His psychic hold tightened, and he felt the nausea boiling up inside of his stomach.

    “Oh, my.” Lord De Jou stepped through the gap with his quarterstaff. “You can control your abilities, then? You aren’t as weak as I thought.” A sly grin crossed his mouth, and he lowered his left hand while his right remained tightly on the quarterstaff. “I cannot harm a mawile with my abilities, as you probably could guess. But you know what I can harm? You.”

    Clarence felt his limbs stiffen up, and his head ached.

    “Let’s see if you have the power to break free of my grip, boy!” The Lord Elite flicked his hand, and Clarence was sent flying back through the air and into the barrier.

    As his back smashed into the wooden barrier, Clarence felt his bones compacting in his spine to avoid breaking. The muscles started to release again, and he relaxed for a moment, pulling himself back onto his feet.

    Smack. The feraligatr slammed its spiny tail into Clarence’s face, sending him into a backflip from the impact. Clarence hit the floor unconscious.

    “Damn it!” Lord Bradford shouted and planted his feet. With one eye on the pokémon fight, he raised his quarterstaff to face the Lord Elite. He heard a growl coming from his right. With a quick pivot and a roll, his quarterstaff met the jaws of the feraligatr, whose tail was slowly returning to a standstill behind him.

    “Medic!” Lord Elite De Jou called into his holo device on his wrist before creating a protective field around Clarence’s unconscious body. You have a lot to learn, kid. On the other side of the battlefield, he heard the sound of scraping metal, followed by the hollow cry of his mega chandelure rang out. “One apiece, but the advantage is all mine,” Lord Elite De Jou said to Lord Bradford, creating a second quarterstaff with his psychic abilities. Still, that mega sceptile is a problem.

    The mega sceptile danced around the mega luxray, its long tail swinging from side to side, with its eyes locked on to the opposing pokémon’s sharp fangs. The mega sceptile shuddered at the thought of the luxray’s ice fangs digging into its leafy scales.

    The luxray’s claws dug into the wooden boards as she pounced from place to place, and with a wide jaw she predicted the sceptile’s movement, crunching down on the pokémon’s tail. The mega sceptile roared in pain, shaking from side to side. However, Lord De Jou’s luxray refused to let go. Instead, her grip intensified as the sandstorm battered them both in the darkness.

    Suddenly, she let go and rolled back. Lord De Jou’s feraligatr’s jaws clamped down on the sceptile’s neck from the other direction. The sceptile let out one final shriek before collapsing onto the floor.

    Lord Interrogator Phillipe emerged from the dust on the back of his hydreigon behind the mega gallade. “Here you go, Bradford!” he called out as dark pulses surged from beneath the wooden boards, attacking the gallade from every angle they could. He breathed a sigh of relief as the hydreigon’s attack captured the gallade’s attention.

    “Thanks, Lord Interrogator!” Lord Bradford shouted and narrowed his eyes. “Toxic the battlefield!” The muk let out a gurgle, spilling out toxic sludge across the wooden boards.

    Lord Interrogator Phillipe nodded at the order and, on the back of his hydreigon, flew further back. He extended his arm, gripping the quarterstaff tightly as he rapidly approached his target.

    “Kinhixo,” Lord De Jou acknowledged. He raised his quarterstaffs and nodded at his opponent. “Do you want to see how this will end?” He hovered above the toxic wasteland that had been created beneath his feet. “You certainly tried to give yourself an advantage. Alas, at the end of it all, it will be just you and me. Old and young, dark and psychic, Elite and Interrogator.”

    The sound of toxic slushing around beneath their feet was sickening to him, but Lord Interrogator Phillipe put on a fake smile and said, “Oh? I’d love to hear this prediction of yours, sir.” He took a deep breath and looked on at his country’s ruler. With the dark stone, I will protect my allies.

    Indeed, you shall. Lord Elite De Jou grinned back at him. “Shall we?”

    “I am ready!” Lord Interrogator Phillipe called back as he got closer with speed.

    “Kill him. Take him down. Become Lord Elite. Take his power.”

    I shall never bow down to such a primal whim, but… Do me a favour… Lord Interrogator Phillipe sprung forward at Lord Elite De Jou. Their quarterstaffs met with a swoosh through the air, and a rattling of wood echoed.

    “Woah, is that the dark stone at work?” Usek shouted down the microphone.

    The tyranitar wobbled forward towards Lord Bradford and Aaron, grabbing them by their collars with a single hand. With a pained roar, it stuck two rocks into the ground and stuffed them each on top of one.

    Aaron squeaked as he was dropped and looked for his haunter. Finally, as the sandstorm started to die down, he caught a glimpse of his small ghost pokémon in the skirmish below. This toxic floor isn’t too bad for us. He caught sight of a fireball flying towards the mega beedrill. “Alright!”

    “And the toxic has now covered the whole battlefield! Poison has been inflicted on the cinderace, tyranitar, scovillain, hydrapple, feraligatr and luxray.” David leaned back in his chair from the commentary box. “The stars are shining in favour of the challenging party! Oh, for those of you in the crowd who don’t know, toxic is a special type of poison attack! The longer the poison is active, the more potent it becomes!”

    Indeed, and that’s what makes it such a good truth serum, Lord Interrogator Phillipe thought in agreement with the commentator. His quarterstaff swung toward Lord De Jou. However, a small shield blocked his staff, and the psychic quarterstaff struck him in the stomach. “Hm,” he grunted, grabbing it and flying back up.

    So, on our side, cinderace is inflicted with toxic, and hydreigon isn’t able to land at risk of being inflicted. Also, we cannot touch the floor. The Nidoking is struggling to keep up with the hydrapple, even though it has an advantage. Aaron crouched down on the rock in thought. His small frame made it easy for him to stay put. His eyes widened as the Nidoking slammed into the toxic sludge below, and the hydrapple hissed in celebration. Its loud cheer made Aaron’s eyes narrow.

    “No!” Aaron called out, seeing the large dragon pokémon’s heads raise out of its apple body and fire a stream of beams towards his haunter. From behind, the poisoned mega scovillain snapped at his haunter, cornering the smaller pokémon.

    “Kid!” Lord Bradford shouted, turning his head away from Lord De Jou.

    Lord De Jou pulled one of his hands behind his back and slammed his quarterstaff into Lord Bradford’s knee, knocking him off the rock and into the toxic sludge down below.

    Lord Bradford's reach emerged moments later, choking and reaching up for the rock, desperate. His face looked sore, and he screamed at the top of his lungs, “..lp!”

    Lord De Jou instinctively raised his hand and wrapped a psychic shield around him, pushing the sludge away. “Medic!” he called out. It is a good thing this field has imposed restrictions on the damage a pokémon can do – but still, that’s going to be really sore, and he will have to take pecha medication for weeks – still… his own mistake. Lord De Jou recalled it was Lord Bradford who ordered his muk to turn the field into a toxic wasteland.

    Clinging to his rock tighter, Aaron screamed, “Help!” His heart was racing, and this was nothing like he had imagined the festival to be. Things had really changed in the blink of an eye, from the puppet show to a dangerous battlefield.

    “Come on, Aaron!” Erik shouted from the stands.

    “Yeah! You got this, Aaron!” Clarence called out from the stands, his injuries bandaged and his memory fuzzy.

    Mylious gave him the thumbs up, tilting his head down.

    “Right.” Aaron shook his head again and stood up on the rock. “Lord Interrogator, help me out!” Before Aaron could finish shouting, the hydreigon swooped in, firing an array of dragon pulses towards the and hydreigon.

    “Thanks!” Aaron shouted.

    “And tyranitar is down!” David’s voice called out over the microphone, drowning Aaron out. “What’s this? The small haunter is still going?” He stood up, shocked. “Who’d have thought it, folks, but the Elkran kid is not out yet. With Lord Bradford out, his cinderace and muk have been forced out of the battle!”

    Lord De Jou stepped closer to Aaron, using small psychic platforms. “So, young Piscar, how are you coping, or are you not?” He side-glanced at Lord Interrogator Phillipe. He grabbed Aaron’s quarterstaff and whispered, “Show me your best, young Piscar.” He pushed Aaron back. Not many pokémon are left: Phillipe’s hydreigon and aegislash, the boy’s haunter, and my scovillain, hydrapple, feraligatr, beedrill and luxray. But first… Lord De Jou took a deep breath and shouted, “Torch the ground!” At his beckoned call, his scovillain swung its fire head around, setting the toxic wasteland below on fire. “Now, let’s make this a little more… interesting…” He raised his poké balls and withdrew his beedrill, feraligatr and scovillain from the battlefield.

    Back in the stands, amongst the crowd, Clarence, Mylious and Erik sat beside Lady De Jou and the somewhat exhausted Lord Bradford, who had been given an adrenaline shot and a heavy pecha injection for his troubles.

    “What’s he doing, my Lady?” Clarence asked Lady De Jou, nursing his sore spots. His blue hair was still covered in the sand from the sandstorm.

    “He’s giving them a chance, sweetheart. He doesn’t want to hammer them into the ground. After all, this is an event.” Lady De Jou shuffled over so Clarence could get closer. She gently dusted the sand out of his hair. “I hope you weren’t too hurt.” Lady De Jou placed a small bowl of berries in his hands. “Eat up. You’ll need to replace the energy you used up.”

    Clarence nodded at her, turning his attention back to the battlefield. I will never lose like that again. I will be more aware of the pokémon on the field. “Come on, Aaron,” Clarence said.

    “He’s doing fine, kiddo,” Lord Bradford said, itching one of the blotches from the toxic wasteland he fell into earlier.

    “Aaron is s-strong, and he w-will think of something…” Mylious said. “I wish I c-could have battled.”

    “Me too…” Erik said, looking down.

    Lord Bradford, noticing the boys’ disappointment, got up from his seat and walked off, returning a few moments later with some sweet berry treats. “Here you go. Now, let’s see how this ends.”
    #10 Jun 15, 2024
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2024
  11. Cavespider_17

    Giratina Egg
    (Giratina Egg)
    Level 2
    Oct 23, 2023
    Trainer Card - Cave Theme

    Who We Are

    Sunday, 2nd January, 1966
    The battlefield, now set ablaze, left smoke rising, making it harder to see. The darkness around them didn’t help either. Aaron coughed on the smoke as it entered his nostrils, and he staggered around on the small rock he was standing on.

    “The Elkran is having issues staying awake. Now, there’s no surprise. He’s stumbling around like a lost mareep,” Usek called out on the microphone.

    “Use shadow sneak….” Aaron managed to squeeze out. His haunter glanced at him before sinking towards the flames. Setting the ground alight only puts you at a disadvantage. Haunters can levitate sometimes, and they can passively phase through things… hydrapple on the other hand… huh?

    Lord Elite De Jou’s hydrapple took a deep breath, and a large mass travelled up its neck. Suddenly, a syrup bomb slammed into the rock Aaron was on.

    Aaron felt his grip give way, and he was thrown back towards the fire. “Help!”

    Lord Elite De Jou raised a hand and flung Aaron with all his might against the wall with his psychic powers.

    Aaron could feel his bones compact to avoid being broken with the slam.

    Ringing echoed through his ears as Aaron opened his eyes. He glanced around the white-sheeted tent and let out a groan. What happened? He sat up, and a blond-haired lady in a white shirt and skirt rushed over to him.

    “Hello, sweetie. You are okay. You were just knocked out from smashing into a wall. No bones were broken, but you do have a gash on your arm and a sprained wrist. It’s okay; we’ve bandaged it up, and you need to take it nice and easy. You probably have a few hours left of the festival; just be careful, and you’ll be fine.” The nurse offered him a hand and helped him stand up.

    “Who won?” Aaron asked. “The battle, I mean.”

    “Lord Elite De Jou, it was close, though. Lord Interrogator Phillipe was dazzling as always,” the nurse said, blushing.

    “Young Piscar, are you okay? I apologise for throwing you so hard.” Lord Elite De Jou walked in, leaning on one of the wooden poles. “Oh dear, is that broken?”

    “No sir, just a sprain… can I still take part in the fun stuff?” Aaron replied with a worried expression.

    “Aaron!” Erik shouted.

    “Hey, Aaron,” Clarence said.

    “Aaron! A-are you okay?” Mylious asked.

    “Yes, young Piscar, you can still have fun. Come.” With a wave of his hand, the teenagers eagerly followed after Lord Elite De Jou. He felt like he was a young man again. “Come, come!” He stepped out of the tent and walked along the street towards a large staircase. His heart excitedly raced as he reached the bottom of the stairs of a large stone tower on the edge of the lake. He placed a foot on the steps and pulled out a poké ball. He made quick work of the degraded stone steps as they twisted upwards.

    “There are so many people on this tower…” Aaron said as his body brushed against another excited Colran citizen. “Sir, where does this lead?”

    “You’ll see!” Lord Elite De Jou responded with a laugh. His energy didn’t fade throughout the climb, and once he reached the top, he gestured for the teens to hurry.

    “L-Lord Elite De Jou!” the man at the top of the tower said with a stutter, his heart pounding through his chest. “Um, I assure you this is legal and I…”

    “I have a few to jump. Let’s see, four. Four to jump.” He pulled Aaron closer but made sure Erik was in front. “I believe they only have one water pokémon, so we will need to borrow two. Is that okay?” He gestured to Aaron, then Erik and Clarence. “I don’t think our other water pokémon is well enough anyway.” He looked at Erik. I hope your Dhelmise recovers soon.

    “Absolutely. We recommend lapras of blastoise.” The man placed a poké ball into Erik and Clarence’s hands. “Arms crossed over your chest as you fall, legs together, and stay straight. Once you hit the water, the poké ball will open. If you are using your own, you will have to press the button manually. Do not let go of the pokémon.”

    “Go on, Erik. Jump.” Lord Elite De Jou nudged him.

    Erik took a deep breath and stepped closer to the edge. He could feel his heart beating in his mouth as he looked over the edge at the water. “Fuck no!” He fell backwards and scrambled away from the edge. “You are fucking nuts. You Colran bastard! You want to kill us.”

    Aaron took out his samurott’s poké ball and stepped up to the edge, looked down and swallowed. “We are… pretty high… here goes nothing…”

    “Only 28 meters, and only one way down. Take a run-up to it if you are worried. Run and jump.” Lord Elite De Jou nodded at Aaron.

    “Only one way down?!” Clarence shouted, gripping Lord Elite De Jou’s arm.

    Aaron closed his eyes and took a deep breath. He took a few steps back. One. Two. Three. He crossed his arms and jumped. He opened his eyes and felt the wind as it rushed past his face, and the smell of the lake water emanating from below him got more muscular. It’s now or never. He pressed the button on his poké ball. The red glow consumed him as his samurott appeared.


    Aaron gripped hold of his samurott’s long blue fins as the current sucked them in. I can breathe? He quickly looked around as his body was exposed to forces pulling him left and right. Fucking hell, this is a whirlpool chute. Aaron squeezed tighter as his samurott’s brown horn broke through into the light from the underwater chute once again.

    “Wooooo!” he shouted, letting go of his samurott and raising his arms to the side, wrapping his legs around the underbelly of his pokémon. “Let’s go, Hunkil!” he laughed as the samurott tilted back down towards one of the other nearby whirlpool chutes. He leaned down, wrapping his arms around the pokémon’s body. The current pulled them around a sharp turn. He peered into the water. “Velvuza! That’s so cool. Hey, Hunkil, I wonder how these chutes work!” Aaron called out to his pokémon before they tilted upward once more, emerging from the water into a skid and against the soft sand to a halt. “Let’s go again!”

    Aaron sprinted as fast as he could back to the stairs, stopping halfway up the stone steps and glancing back over the shimmering lake and its whirlpool chutes. “Mylious?” he whispered as he saw his friend limping into town, holding Lady De Jou’s hand in the distance. Wait for me…

    The shop’s bell rang, and a small klefki popped its head out from behind the counter, jingling. Mylious jumped back at the sound, squeezing Lady De Jou’s hand tighter. The fire reds and golds of the painted walls inside made the small wooden shop seem grand. The metal wires that were used for branding hung up behind the counter; some were still in the shape of their previous uses and were waiting to be reset.

    It looks pretty clean in here, Mylious thought, taking a deep breath and loosening his grip on Lady De Jou’s hand. He turned his attention to the pictures on the wall. “W-what is that pokémon?” he asked as he looked at the carvings of the branding marks that others had requested in the past.

    “Oh, that’s a klefki, sweetie. You can’t find them in the wild much anymore. They are only found in Tiok,” Lady De Jou said, reaching into her green jacket’s pocket, pulling out a small berry, and offering it to the small steel type. “You have a lot of keys, don’t you, little one?”

    Mylious shrugged at her conversation with the pokémon. “Some of these l-look really good.”

    “I’m glad you think so. I do a lot of the designs myself,” a man said, walking in from the back. His voice sounded sooty, and his white shirt was covered in carkoal dust.

    A tall red heatmor stood beside him, her brown snout twitching and her tongue flicking. The orange and yellow stripes that darted down her body glowed with the fiery heat inside of her.

    “What can I do for you today?” the man asked.

    Mylious looked down and rolled up his left sleeve. “C-can you make it better? I mean, m-make it… I w-want to be a d-doctor, but t-this… I mean…”

    “You got a little bit of a trip there, don’t you, kid?” the man said, his gruff voice breaking through the air.

    “Yes, sir,” Mylious said, looking down. Please, Lady De Jou… help.

    The man leaned against the desk. “Kid, you got to speak up. You don’t need to go out there and shout, but if you want something, you have to say; otherwise, no brand will make that better. Got it? And don’t call me sir or none of that shit. It says Vixall’s, doesn’t it? My name is Vixall. Vixall Morgenstern. So, you call me Vix, got it, kid?” Vix leaned back on his chair as his heatmor sized Mylious up. “So, let me ask again, what do you want?”

    Mylious hesitated for a moment, remembering Lord Captain Jun Seo’s words. He took a deep breath in and steadied his nerves before saying, “I would like to… change it into the medical symbol and…” He paused as he trembled.

    “And?” Vix pressed, his red hair flicked back, and his blue eyes looked over at Mylious lazily.

    “I d-don’t know the w-word… um…” Mylious looked at the pictures again before reaching up and pointing at the one with the houndoom jaws on. “Down here…” he said, looking at his lower left arm, please.”

    Vix grinned and leapt up from his seat. “Can do, kid, can do. It will take a while and will be painful, but you look pretty strong and tough. I’ll do the second one on the house. How’s that for a good deal?” Vix looked to Lady De Jou, who mouthed thank you to him. “So, you got a name?”

    “My name is Mylious… a-and um… my l-last name is Jackson,” Mylious said, sitting down in the small booth. He turned to see Lady De Jou step outside of the shop.

    Vix cleared his throat, snatching Mylious’s attention back from the door. “So, you like houndoom?”

    “Yes, I think th-they are pretty nice. I h-have a houndour…” Mylious said, a small smile creeping over his face as he watched Vix place one of the wires over a small fire pit. Heatmor lights up the fire?

    The heated wires started to glow a soft orange as heat began to rise in the room. The heatmor licked her lips with her long, thin tongue.

    “You can feed her if you want. There are some berries in the baskets on the side.” Vix’s voice, despite not looking up, carried through the quiet store. Using a small hook, he started to twist the wires, connecting them into the shape of teeth. “Going to do your lower arm first, as it’s the more difficult one to set. That way, I can keep an eye on it while I work on your upper arm. Why don’t you tell me a bit about you?”

    Mylious nodded and took a deep breath. “I live in Elktan… um, is that okay?”

    “Why wouldn’t it be?” Vix said. “I was born on the border. I get it.” Vix continued to tweak the metal wires. He only raised his head to the sound of the doorbell ringing. “Welcome in.”

    The sound of footsteps approaching caught Mylious’s attention, and he turned and twitched at the sight of the Colran Ruler, but with yet another deep breath, he reached down and wrapped his fingers around a berry in the basket. He smiled as the heatmor’s nose twitched at the smell of the berry being raised closer to her mouth.

    Her tongue extended and wrapped around the berry like a coil. The sound of slurping filled the room as she sucked the berry into her mouth.

    “Mylious! I’m so sorry… I should have come here first…” Aaron said, rushing in, holding his sprained wrist.

    “Oi! Keep it down, punk. Or I’ll punk you!” Vix shouted, and his klefki jingled his keys angrily at Aaron.

    Aaron raised his hands as fast as he could. “Sorry.”

    “You were saying, kid? What about you? Where did you even get that shitty mark?” Vix asked Mylious, pointing to the brand on his arm.

    “I was born to-to-to be experimented on. My m-mum, and d-dad died and m-my s-siblings too. I k-killed him. The d-doctor who owned us and escaped. I was f-five, I think. I d-don’t remember m-much except f-feeling the blood on my hands.”

    “Hmm?” Lord Elite De Jou looked at Mylious and sighed, nodded and looked over to the other teenagers having fun outside and then back at Mylious. Poor kid. The world has been cruel to him and he is still standing. “I wish I could ban slavery, but I can’t. At least not as a blanket ban. Politics is like that. If I blanket ban it, a whole heap of problems come up. It would become huge on the black market to start with. That means unregulated.” He looked at Mylious, who screwed up his face, confused. “Unregulated,” he said again, this time in Elkrat.

    Mylious raised an eyebrow and asked, “What else?”

    “Well, unregulated trade would make living conditions even worse. Lords wouldn’t be happy at the fact their possessions are now free people and would start a war. Those free people would need houses, food and resources… more than they have now… It is just a messy political topic which will take the ruler from Kilgor to resolve, but Master Filktas doesn’t give a shit. His life is far too cosy to care. If I do ban it, he could declare war on Colran and maybe even Elktan – and that would mean innocent people die.” Lord Elite De Jou scooted closer to Mylious in the booth as Vix nodded in agreement. “We are so behind Kilgor in terms of army strength, even though they are much smaller. We’d lose.”

    “Ready, Mylious?” Vix asked, as he held the wires in the heatmor’s fire.

    “Yes.” Mylious clenched his teeth as the metal pressed into his forearm. He swallowed, pushing his scream back down his throat as tears welled up in his eyes. “Is it done?” he asked, the pain preventing him from stuttering.

    “Almost. We have to wrap this one up, and then we will do the other one. I knew it, though,” Vix said with a smile.

    “Knew it?” Mylious whispered back.

    Vix, not taking his eyes off the bandage he was coating in a rawst berry and chansey egg mix, said, “You are a strong kid.”

    The heatmor-lit lamp flickered and filled the room with a warm glow. The bell in the tallest tower on the shoreline in Virto chimed a soft melody. The stalls outside were packing away their things and preparing for one final event of the day.

    I wish we could do this every day, Aaron thought. He stood up and walked out of the branding shop and onto the street. The purple glow of the lampent differed in contrast to that of inside the shop. A sadness washed over Aaron as he could see the stars above his head. The sunset must have happened in the last hour or so. Damn it. I missed it. He walked over to the dock and sat on the edge. His feet dangled just above the water, unaware of the potentially dangerous pokémon beneath the water. The cooler evening air brushed against him as a solemn reminder of home and the harsher winters from just across the lake.

    The door to the branding shop opened in the distance, and the others walked over to the dock.

    Mylious yawned, quickly covering his mouth with his unbandaged arm. His eyes drooped as he struggled to look up at Lord Elite De Jou. He slumped down on the wooden dock beside Aaron.

    Lord Elite De Jou glanced back at Mylious before saying, “You have suffered so much, but you’ll get your chance to set things right one day. This year is one of the biggest years of your life. You are about to start high school and have a chance to do great things. The Colran kids are about to start work for the first time and experience life. It would be best if you weren’t worrying about politics. You need to be a kid.”

    Aaron listened, laid down on the grass by the dock, and stared up at the sky. He felt the overwhelming sense of dread at having to go home creeping up on him. Lord Elite De Jou was nothing like how his father had described. The man was far humbler and kinder. He had taken pity on them when he could have very quickly tossed them in jail or worse. The sounds of the harmonicas and banjos playing in the background flooded the air. The bright lights of the heatmor, macargo and infernapes being shot into the sky in varying hues of colour painted a whole new world for him. He felt the face paint on his cheeks become more solid.

    What a great festival. The Colran sure know how to party, Aaron thought as he closed his eyes with a yawn and drifted off.

    Lord Elite De Jou approached Erik, who was sitting on his own. “You know, you’ve grown up a hell of a lot in three days.” He sat beside Erik, waiting for what the young man had to say for himself.

    Erik shrugged at first, holding his dhelmise’s poké ball in his hand. “I don’t know.” Erik sighed. “Dad told us you were a monster… but you’ve only been nice to us, sir.” Erik pulled his legs up onto the bench he was sitting on and looked at Lord Elite De Jou. “What happens now? I won’t let you hurt my little brother…”

    Lord Elite De Jou looked at Erik with a soft smile. “What’s on your mind, young Piscar?”

    “I feel like I have to live up to so much, and I don’t necessarily agree with my dad’s policies or whatever; it’s just…” Erik whispered.

    “You feel like you can’t stand tall and speak your mind?” Lord Elite De Jou asked, and Erik nodded back. “It’s alright, young Piscar. You’ll find your voice.” Lord Elite De Jou grinned.

    Erik sighed and looked at his dhelmise. “I saw that battle and how you dominated. I don’t think I’ll ever be as strong as you. I suppose I’m just jealous of my brother. He’s so brave. Like on the water jump thing, he didn’t hesitate for a minute. He has friends, and I don’t. Mylious, Aaron’s friend… he isn’t worthless – because he means something to my brother. I guess his background just made it easier for me to pick on him.” Erik took out the ponyta’s poké ball. “I am a trash human being… aren’t I?”

    “No. You are a kid. Ghetz was a trash human being – but even he had merits.” Lord Elite De Jou shuffled closer to Erik.

    “Who?” the boy answered, looking up at him with a lost expression.

    “Don’t worry. Well, let’s get your brother and his friends to bed, and then you and I can talk for a little bit.” Lord Elite De Jou smiled.

    Erik screwed up his face, and his hair flopped down a little. “I’d like that. You treat me like someone who still has choices and… well…”

    Lord Bradford’s footsteps broke Erik’s train of thought, and he sat beside him.

    “I’ll leave you to it. I’ll call the carriage.” Lord Elite De Jou nodded to Lord Bradford and got up from his seat.

    The sound of pokémon splashing around in the water broke the silence before Lord Bradford nudged Erik playfully. “You have choices, kid. Here, I thought hard about it, and I think you can do great things.” Lord Bradford took the bow off of his back and placed it in Erik’s hands. “I’ll win again next year. No one ever beats me - almost.”

    Erik ran his fingers along the bow, feeling the trevenant wood. “I’ll be the best shot in Elktan, and when my father dies and I become Lord Elite, that and my pokémon battling skills will be what I’ll be known for. I swear it.”
  12. Cavespider_17

    Giratina Egg
    (Giratina Egg)
    Level 2
    Oct 23, 2023
    Trainer Card - Cave Theme

    Visionary and Virtues

    Sunday, 2nd January, 1966

    Night fell, and Lord Elite De Jou sat on the sofa beside the radio. He had a bottle of dritze in one hand and a glass in the other. Soon, Ellio, you and I will have that much-needed talk… He placed his glass back on the table and reached over, picking up a small chip and putting it into the radio. Static rang out for a moment before a voice could be heard coming through the small device.

    “My Lord Elite, it's so wonderful to finally meet you in person. I've wanted to meet you since I was a little kid.”

    “I hear that a lot. Maybe too much. For the sake of the interview, please call me Anyon.”

    “Of course, as you wish.”​

    Lord Elite De Jou leaned back in his seat as the pause lingered. Oh, Anyon… I miss you. He grimaced at the static before listening to the recording again.

    “Is something the matter?”

    “No sir, I mean Anyon. It's just you are much softer spoken in person.”

    “I hear that a lot too.”

    “You've been Lord Elite of Elktan now for 23 years...”


    “Right. Um... And your relationship with Lord Elite De Jou has a lot of citizens on edge. The Colran enemy i-“

    “The Colran enemy? What is this? Is that something a few little upstarts too young to remember to think?”​

    Lord De Jou let out a small chuckle. You always did have a dry sense of humour, but… that’s why I needed you around. You needed me, too. That day in the garden all those years ago was the best day of my life.

    “I feel like the Colran en-“

    “You have no idea what an enemy is or an actual threat is. Most of you youngsters don't.”

    “I meant no off-“

    “Let me ask you something, boy. Did you ever wonder why there are very few elderly around?”

    “I've never thought about it.”

    “Or maybe have you asked your parents how they met? How even old are you, boy?”

    “I'm 19, sir.”

    “Have you ever considered why the ban of Pokémon moves such as hypnosis, nightmare, dream eater, or follow me on humans exists?”

    “No sir...”

    “Let me tell you something, boy. There are things far more terrifying than the Colran or even Kilgorese army. “​

    “There are things far more terrifying than the Colran or even Kilgorese army,” Lord De Jou repeated. You were always honest, Anyon.

    “Like what?”

    “I assume you know of the Great Shadowing?”

    “Yes, of course. When the psychic stone, ghost stone and dark stone came into contact with each other, psychic, ghost and dark type pokémon went crazy. Some people say it caused psychic, sadist and even immortal humans to exist, but that’s just a nickit tale."

    “If only. Two of these… er… people… that were affected by the Great Shadowing had a child, and his name was…”

    “You do not have to answer these ridiculous questions.”​

    “Dad?” Aaron asked, coming out of the bedroom. He rubbed his eyes as the spotted pyjama shirt’s sleeve slid down his arm.

    Raising an eyebrow in response, Lord De Jou pressed a button on the radio, pausing the recording. “How long have you been listening?”

    Aaron sniffled. “I am sorry, I had a bad dream… are you mad at me?”

    “No, my boy.” He tapped a space on the sofa beside him and moved up so Aaron could sit next to him. “What was your bad dream about?”

    With a groggy voice, Aaron murmured, “My pokémon were taken away and stuff, and I never got to see them again” Aaron sniffled. “Who was that?” he added.

    “My best friend. His name was Anyonovix Hamilton.” Lord De Jou wrapped an arm around Aaron and pulled him in closer. “He was the bravest man I ever knew. He saved the world, and for it, he received a lifetime of nightmares. Literal nightmares. He was still happy…” Lord De Jou looked away. “Anyway, this is er… as you say, an interview. A young interviewer was asking him questions about his rule.” Lord Elite De Jou looked over at Aaron, who was still sniffling. “Your pokémon are safe. I picked them up after the battle. They are on the desk in my office. Anyon would never forgive me if I took a child’s pokémon from them, or if I forgot to pick them up after a battle.” He smiled.

    “Oh… um… can I listen? He sounds interesting… I want to be brave and help my people when I grow old enough.” Aaron smiled; his green hair flopped down over his face. He shuffled closer at the nod of the Colran Ruler and grabbed hold of the blanket that had been resting on Lord De Jou’s lap.

    Lord De Jou reached forward and rewound the chip before pressing play.

    “If only. Two of these… er… people… that were affected by the Great Shadowing had a child, and his name was…”

    “You do not have to answer these ridiculous questions.”

    “No, no… I do. Just…”​

    “So… um… my dad was there?” Aaron asked as Lord Elite Hamilton’s heavy breathing filled the room’s air.

    “That’s right. Your father was his Lord Interrogator.” Lord De Jou ran his fingers through Aaron’s hair.

    “His name was Erik Ghetz. He was an Elkran Lord. He had all three traits. He could control psychic pokémon without the psychic stone. He could buff them… some people said he was the fourth reincarnation of Igor Rett… but…”

    “Ha, ha, you are saying a single man was stronger than our army?”

    “He killed everyone who even attempted to resist his mind control. Every single person. He killed so many people he…”​

    Aaron took a breath and asked, “Wasn’t that the name on the wall in the town? Erik Ghetz, I mean. If he was so bad and people don’t want to remember what he did… what’s to stop bad stuff ever happening again?”

    “Oh… giratina…”​

    Lord De Jou looked away and mumbled, “We are imperfect beings, young Piscar. Everyone only wants to care for themselves. Many were too traumatised to want to remember, others… well, they aren’t here to tell the tale.” He petted Aaron’s head as the heavy breathing stopped, and his friend’s familiar voice continued.

    “He took over Colran and Elktan… the only fucking reason he couldn’t take Kilgor was because the normal stone was protecting them. They did nothing. They just… watched as he made people lose their lives. Most of the population were mindless drones, under the spell of him or his psychic type pokémon. If he wanted you to work in the mines, you did; if he wanted you to hunt or kill, you did; if he wanted you to fall in love with someone, you did.​

    Lord De Jou quickly covered Aaron’s ears so he couldn’t hear the next part of what the former Lord Elite was going to say. After a few moments, he let go.

    “He came to save us. His parents were controlled, but he fled to Kilgor before he was seven years old. When you turned 7, Lord Ghetz used to make you come to his throne and force you to endure psychic torment for 18 or more hours, just to make sure he had control over you. Thomas saved me…, and together we had a pokémon battle with him… It isn’t quite as straightforward as that. He defeated Thomas the first time… but I will spare you the gruesome details. I still see him… even now… in my nightmares…”​

    Lord Elite De Jou turned off the radio and looked at Aaron. “I entrust you, young Piscar – never while you can fight, let a man like that rule again. I won’t be around forever. Do you promise me?”

    “I promise…” Aaron replied. “I’m sorry for disturbing you, and I think I want to go back to bed now… um… can your luxray stay with me, please? She’s strong… so…”

    “Yes, my boy.” Lord Elite De Jou grabbed the 14-year-old and lifted him, carried him to the bedroom and tucked him in beneath the blankets next to his friends. “Goodnight, young Piscar.”

    Aaron rolled over into his brother’s arms and tried to drift off.

    Lord De Jou, with one final sigh, closed the door behind him and walked along the woodland path toward the clearing. His eyes occasionally flicked down to his holo-device, checking the time. The device ticked over to say 2:41 AM, and he sat down on the stump, looking up at the moon.

    A twig snapped behind him, and he calmly said, “Piscar.”

    “Where are they? What have you done? I want my son!” Lord Elite Piscar shouted.

    “Son? Or sons. If I recall, you have two,” Lord De Jou responded, still seated and looking up at the moon. “Unless you’d rather I raise your youngest son and use him against you?”

    “How dare you! I will make you suffer for that, you insufferable…!” Lord Elite Piscar raised his sword and placed a hand on his spiritomb’s poké ball.

    Lord Elite De Jou stood up and turned to face the blade. “With your children, I did not play such a hostile game, but you, I will not show such mercy. Lower your blade, or I will make you. I am aware of Jun Seo and Von Recht’s presence.”

    “Filthy psychic!” Lord Elite Piscar’s words made Lord Captain Jun Seo flinch where he stood.

    “Hmm.” Lord De Jou turned his back on Lord Piscar and stepped a few feet away, looking up at the moon once again. “What price shall I have you pay? Oh, I know… I want Tiok and Chitrok. Or, I will kill your sons and their friends and make an example out of them.” Lord De Jou leaned on a tree—your move.

    “What? That’s an outrageous demand!” Lord Piscar stepped back. “Two towns for the brats?”

    “I see you are hesitant. Perhaps I should show you this…” He turned his hand upright and flicked his wrist over it, and a small pink orb appeared in his hand.

    “Erik? Why is he all hurt? What did you do to him? Stop it! You can have your damn territories! Release my heir!”

    “All in good time. Madison, show him the treaty.” Lord De Jou placed his hands behind his back as a younger man approached the Elkran Ruler and showed him a piece of paper. “Sign, right there.” He tapped the paper with a pen. “You may borrow mine.” He offered the pen.

    Lord Piscar snatched it, ripping the top off and signing the bottom. “Happy? Now give me my sons! I will raise them to destroy you that you can do nothing about. How dare you even hurt them!”

    “As if I would break my own accords.” Lord De Jou flicked his wrist and revealed Erik and Aaron cuddling together while his luxray watched over them in the room of his cabin.

    “Dirty psychic!”

    “Indeed. But you did just sign two towns over to me. If you even consider contesting it, I will call Kilgor, and they will intervene. Or I will march right up to your little citadel and crush you.” A smug little grin crossed his face, and his amber eyes glowed pink once again. “Try to sleep. I will send your children to you in the morning. For now, let them rest.” He stepped away, walking towards the path again. “Oh, and Piscar? If you continue on your current path, you will fall to a man far greater than you could even dream to be.”

    The sound of Lord De Jou’s footsteps faded from the clearing, and Lord Piscar stood bewildered, his moustache twitched. Then, I will ensure all challengers die. Thanks for the heads up, De Jou.

    Thank you for all who has made it to the end. I appreciate everyone who has given their time to read this piece through. If there are ever any characters, any other scenes or what ifs you wish for me to explore, let me know!

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