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Pokémon Moonlight Silver

Discussion in 'Literature Library' started by WavePearl, Jul 29, 2016.

  1. WavePearl

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    Episode 114a: Pop Goes the Sneasel! (part 1)

    "I really do hope Nelson meets Entei one day..." Ash mused as the group continued along the path to Mt. Silver. "Not as something to be caught and tamed, but as an ally, and a friend."

    He was snapped from his thoughts when he saw a large crowd of people gathered at a large closed gate. "Is the Johto League so popular that lines form the day of?"

    "Doesn't look like that kind of line to me..." Brock replied.

    Ash flagged down a man in the crowd. "Excuse me, sir...why are all these people here?"

    "There's some kind of commotion going on on the other side." the man explained. "The bad thing is, this gate leads to Mt. Silver, so everyone's stuck!"

    Ami took advantage of the gate opening to dash through the crowd. [Yay! It's open!] she cried, which went unheard over the attendant explaining to the crowd what was going on.

    [Ami, wait! Not yet!] Tintri cried, racing to grab Ami moments before she could walk through the gate.

    Ash and Misty retrieved both Tintri and Ami seconds later. "I am so sorry, sir...Ami can be curious, but she usually doesn't mean to cause any trouble..." Misty explained to the guard in the watchpost.

    "My Pikachu was only trying to corral my friend's Marill before she got into trouble, sir." Ash agreed.

    "It's probably perfect timing anyway, since I didn't know how else to say this." the attendant sighed.

    But before he could finish, two angry trainers ran down a set of stone steps in the distance. "Looks like those guys were in the heat of battle..." Misty mused as one of the trainers angrily yelled something at the attendant.

    "I could only hear 'lost' and 'fire'..." Ash replied. "So what was that all about?"

    "We have a huge problem on our hands--nobody's been able to get to the Sacred Fire." the attendant explained with a sigh. "That's what we were trying to tell everyone."

    "What is the Sacred Fire?" Ash asked, intrigued.

    The attendant was about to answer when a male voice interjected "If I may, I can answer this young man's question, sir."

    Ash whirled around to see a young man with dull brown hair wearing a purple and coral shirt and tan pants approaching the group. "Who are you?"

    "My name is Harrison." the young man replied. "I came here all the way from from Littleroot Town, in the Houen region."

    "I've heard of Houen, actually." Brock smiled. "It's supposed to be to the south of Kanto."

    "I've done some research about this place, and if any of you are storytellers, what I discovered would be perfect to tell before an audience as a historical tale." Harrison offered.

    Brock eagerly retrieved his story notebook and a pen. "Fire away."

    "The story goes that long ago, this area was a place known for many fierce battles and wars." Harrison explained. "People ravaged the place so badly that the Pokémon suffered because of it and the vegetation was wiped out. But one day, Ho'oh appeared after a battle and sang her Swanna Song, unleashing a rose colored flame that stopped the battles and "burned" the area back to life. Eventually the forest that stands today was restored. But a bit of a tree was left burning for a long time. This fire was placed in the shrine nearby."

    Recently there have been reports of a Sneasel, a Machop, and a Machoke preventing people from getting near the shrine." the attendant explained. "Every trainer who volunteered to try to stop the rogue Pokémon ended up coming back with injured Pokémon, broken bones, and other serious injuries--it's a miracle no one's been killed. We're deeply concerned about the matter, because without the Sacred Fire, the Silver Tournament can't start, and there would be no Johto League!"

    Ash nodded to show he understood. "I'll make sure we can recover the Sacred Fire from the Sneasel, mainly because I wants to compete!"

    "Actually, I've always wanted a Sneasel as a souvenir from Johto, so I'll help you out if you can get your hands on it." Harrison offered.

    "Thanks." Ash smiled before asking the attendant "Where is the shrine?"

    "North of here--once you get halfway up the stone steps, you'll reach a path that branches to the left--the shrine is at the end of that path." the attendant replied.

    "Let's do this!" Misty cried.

    "Come on! We have a League to save!" Ash led the way up the stairs as the crowd looked on...

    To Be Continued...
     
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  2. WavePearl

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    Episode 114b: Pop Goes the Sneasel! (part 2)

    Previously, on "Pokémon Moonlight Silver"...

    Ash nodded to show he understood. "I'll make sure we can recover the Sacred Fire from the Sneasel, mainly because I want to compete!"

    "Actually, I've always wanted a Sneasel as a souvenir from Johto, so I'll help you out if you can get your hands on it." Harrison offered.

    "Thanks." Ash smiled before asking the attendant "Where is the shrine?"

    "North of here--once you get halfway up the stone steps, you'll reach a path that branches to the left--the shrine is at the end of that path." the attendant replied.

    "Let's do this!" Misty cried.

    "Come on! We have a League to save!" Ash led the way up the stairs as the crowd looked on...


    "Almost there." Brock reported as the group neared the midpoint of the stone steps, where they hoped to find the path leading to the Shrine of the Sacred Fire.

    "About time--my feet are killing me!" Misty complained as her feet throbbed in pain.

    Ash, meanwhile, spotted a dusty pathway leading to an alcove just as he approached the midpoint step. "There it is! That has to be where the--WHOA!"

    Misty froze as she heard the BWONG! of Ash colliding with a clothesline. "Ash!" she cried as she dashed to catch Ash, seconds before he went tumbling back down the stairs. Instead, he landed in his friends' arms--Brock supporting his head and body, and Misty steadying his legs. "There--you okay?" Misty asked as soon as Ash was stable on his own two feet again.

    "I think so--didn't expect to run into that wire." Ash replied as he dusted himself off. "Nothing hurts or anything."

    "That's good to hear." Harrison smiled. "Although...why would the path to the shrine be blocked like that? According to my Johto guidebook, the Shrine of the Sacred Fire is the start of the torch relay to the League."

    When the group approached the path to the shrine again, Ash noticed a Machop and a Machoke inspecting the wire he had hit. "Its those Pokémon the attendant told us about!"

    "So what do you suggest we do?" Harrison asked.

    "Let's distract them and sneak past--that way we can all save our Pokémon for the League." Misty suggested.

    She then heaved a Poké Ball skyward. "Sango, I need you!"

    "Anubis, I need you!" Harrison called as he too heaved a Poké Ball, summoning what looked like a larger version of Houndour with large horns and a pointed tail.

    Piqued, Ash decided to read up on the black dog-like Pokémon as it supported Sango's Spike Cannon with a Flamethrower:

    Houndoom, the dark Pokémon. Upon hearing its eerie howls, other Pokémon get the shivers, and head straight back to their nests.

    He noticed a MORE... icon blinking at the bottom of the screen, so he tapped it. "Houndoom is capable of Mega Evolution should the trainer have an awakened Heart Song."

    "I have Anubis engaging the Machoke, and your friend's got the Machop, so here's your chance!" Harrison called to Ash as his Houndoom heaved another Flamethrower.

    Ash nodded, and hurried to the shrine. But moments before he could open the doors, a high pitched cry got his attention, nearly avoiding a claw as he jumped away.

    He growled when he saw a small black Pokémon with long claws giggling at him. That is the Sneasel...

    He grabbed the first Poké Ball he could reach and heaved it skyward. "River, I need you!"

    [How do you propose we beat Mr. Ninja-mon over there?] River asked as she materialized on the grass, aware of the Sneasel taunting them both.

    "I want you to use Water Gun, but be careful not to hit the Sacred Fire." Ash replied, gesturing to the open shrine doors. If the water ricochets off the trees, it could put the Sacred Fire out!

    [HAH!] River unleashed a Water Gun attack, but did not expect the Sneasel to pounce on her and Slash her with his claws, knocking her to the ground.

    [Ow...any more bright ideas?] River groaned as she eased herself to her feet, rubbing her Slash wound all the while.

    Ash gasped when he saw the Sneasel charging a Shadow Ball! "Hit the dirt!"

    He gasped as River went flying into his chest, sending them both tumbling back down the hill, only to crash into a tree.

    "Ash!" Misty led the others near the tree where Ash and River were collecting themselves. "Are you okay?"

    "Just a little pain where I caught River, and some scratches, but I think we'll be okay." Ash groaned.

    "Let's go plan out a strategy--going at them head on is obviously not working." Brock suggested as he led the way to an alcove near the shrine.

    ---------

    "Okay..." Brock began as he led the way back towards the shrine. "Here's the plan--Ash, I want you to pick someone that can be Mega Evolved..."

    "I chose Luce." Ash replied.

    "Then when we meet the three rogues, I want you to induce Luce, and have her support Anubis." Brock explained.

    "You have the power of Mega Evolution?" Harrison gasped, excited. "I know Anubis and Apollo have that ability, but I have yet to find a place where I can awaken my Heart Song..."

    "That's what this is..." Ash showed Harrison his Mega Ring. "They say Mega Evolution is the ultimate sign of love between trainer and Pokémon, in those Pokémon that can do it."

    He noticed the Machop, the Machoke, and the Sneasel waiting for the group at the path. "There they are..."

    He heaved a Poké Ball skyward, followed by holding his right hand, which had his Mega Ring, to the sky. Jao wiisha nes chiel com yutuul...

    Harrison watched in awe as a whorl of red thunderbolts emerged from Ash's Poké Ball, revealing Luce as Mega Ampharos! "Anubis, help my friend's Mega Ampharos!"

    [HI-YA!!!] Luce ran to engage the Machop, paralyzing it with a Charge Beam. Anubis then charged at the Machoke with a Headbutt.

    Anubis noticed the two Fighting Pokémon charging to engage him and Luce. [Hey, Luce...think you can pick up the Machop while I toss the Machoke?]

    [Sure!] Luce replied before snagging the Machop and tying it up with a Charge Beam as Anubis picked up the Machoke.

    Ash watched as both Fighting Pokémon went flying down the hill, landing at the attendant's feet with swirly eyes. "Two down, and one to go...can you handle the Sneasel by yourself, Harrison?" he asked as Luce's Mega Evolution wore off.

    "I think so." Harrison replied as he recalled Anubis. "But I know I can ask you to help if I need it."

    He then heaved a second Poké Ball skyward. "Apollo, I choose you!"

    Ash gasped at the large red bird Pokémon with long muscular legs that materialized before the Sneasel. "What IS that?" he asked as he consulted his Pokédex.

    "Blaziken, the blaze Pokémon. An exotic Pokémon from the Houen region, it can clear a 30-story building in a single bound.

    Ash noticed another MORE... icon blinking at the bottom, so he tapped it. Blaziken is capable of Mega Evolution should the trainer have an awakened Heart Song."

    "I don't know why Harrison hasn't awakened his Heart Song yet..." Brock mused as he watched Apollo use Quick Attack, which the Sneasel had no chance of dodging. "Based on what little I've read on the Houen region, there is a place he could've awakened it, but where it is escapes me now..."

    "It's ultimately a mutual decision between Pokémon and trainer." Ash reminded him as he watched the Sneasel attempt to counter with a Shadow Ball, only for Apollo to dodge and counter with Flamethrower. "What else do you remember from your Houen readings?"

    "I remember that the area has twin evil teams with opposing goals." Brock replied. "One wants to expand the land, and the other wants to expand the sea. But all they ever seem to do is fight against each other" He let that hang as they watched Harrison heaved a Poké Ball at the Sneasel...

    ---------

    "I'm impressed...I never dreamed Apollo was so powerful." Ash smiled as he met Harrison in the crowd near the shrine later that evening, where a crowd had turned out to watch the start of the torch relay.

    "He may be my best partner and friend, but I never dreamed I'd see Mega Evolution for myself." Harrison smiled. "But whether I decide to induce Apollo or Anubis will be their choice."

    "What are you going to name your new Sneasel?" Ash asked.

    "Not sure yet--I'll think of something to continue the mythology and legend theme I have going with my team." Harrison replied. "I will say Luce is a pretty name for an Ampharos."

    Some cheers snapped the group to attention as the first torchbearer received the Sacred Fire to begin the relay. "I plan to be at the tournament, and I hope to see you there, too."

    "Don't worry, I'll be there." Ash assured Harrison. "Not just that, but I will do my best to win!"

    To Be Continued...
     
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  3. WavePearl

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    Episode 115: A Claim to Flame!


    "Here you are." Ash smiled as he handed the receptionist at the Silver Stadium the paperwork to enter the Silver Conference.

    "All right--be sure and report to the athlete's village at noon for the screening rounds." the receptionist smiled as she filed Ash's paperwork away in a cabinet. "You are free to do whatever you wish until then, including partaking in the other events."

    "Thanks." Ash smiled before starting back towards the lounge where Misty and Brock were waiting.

    "Well, look who's here!" a familiar voice said, snapping both Ash and Tintri to attention.

    "Gary?" Ash gasped as he spotted Gary arriving with paperwork of his own to turn in.

    "Who else would it be?" Gary smirked as he approached the reception desk. "You've got a couple of hours to kill before the big show, so what are you gonna do?"

    "Probably explore the area." Ash replied. "I'd hate to get lost trying to find my way around this place."

    "Good luck with that." Gary replied as he got in line to deliver the paperwork.

    "Was Gary implying what I think he was implying?" Brock asks as the group departed the reception building, and into Silver City's bustling streets.

    "Look, my sense of direction isn't THAT bad..." Ash explained. "Although I will admit it still needs some work."

    "The more familiar you are with a place, the easier it is to find your way." Misty reminded Ash. "So it's a good idea to learn where all the arenas are, so you're not late to any matches."

    As the group rounded a corner, they spotted Lance handing out balloons to kids. "Lance, hi!" Ash waved.

    "It's good to see you three again..." Lance smiled as he gave a girl an electric blue balloon decorated with the Water icon for the Pokémon Trading Card Game. "As Champion of the Pokémon League, part of the job is greeting all the fans, and the best way to do that is through handing out balloons."

    After finding a yellow Lightning icon balloon for Ash, a second Water icon balloon for Misty, and a Rock icon balloon for Brock, he told the group "Here, these are good luck gifts from me."

    "Thanks, Lance!" Ash smiled as the group continued on their way, Misty tying the yellow balloon's string to Ash's hand so it wouldn't float away.

    ---------

    "Wow..." the group gasped as they arrived at the Athlete's Village Pokémon Center later that afternoon. "Who knew we'd get a luxury suite?" Ash gawked as he tied the group's balloons into a small bundle in a corner, away from sharp implements.

    "They thought of everything--we've got a lakeside view, a big screen TV with a Nintendo Switch, and a top of the line PC for both work and play." Misty smiled as she admired the sun sparkling off the lake to the west.

    "Nice, I'm gonna play Super Mario Odyssey right now!" Ash made a beeline for the TV and the Switch.

    "You can game all you want later, after we're all done with the screening rounds." Brock reminded Ash before giving him a brief rundown of what to expect. "Basically, the screening rounds are designed to trim the field of 200 competitors in each event--be they trainer, Pokethlete, or Loremaster--down to 48."

    He paused to turn off the lights before continuing "In your case, the screening rounds are a series of one-on-one battles, with match-ups entirely randomized, with no trainer having to battle more than three times."

    "Sounds easy enough." Ash grinned as Misty and Brock went their separate ways to their own events. "Good luck to you too, Brock."

    ---------

    "...It turned out my strategy of a pure speed offensive was a bad idea, and Tintri ended up being subjected to repeated Digs and Headbutts." Ash recapped his victory to Misty and Brock later that night, exploring a desert ruin in Super Mario Odyssey all the while. "However, Tintri latched onto the Furret, who tried to get into the holes in order to shake Tintri off. This allowed Tintri to Thunderbolt it, and a final Quick Attack got me the match!"

    "Well done." Misty smiled as she checked the results of the events on the PC. "We've all made it through to the next round of our respective events--I got a gold to advance to the next round..."

    "...and I told 'The Swanna's Song' to advance to the next round." Brock added. "I think the audience participation element in my tale really helped."

    Misty clicked back to the Pokémon battle recaps. "Let's see...Gary and Harrison have also passed the screening round too."

    "If I can beat a guy with a Furret, I can beat 47 other trainers." Ash smiled as he prepared to face off against a boss.

    "It won't be that easy, Ash..." Lance cautioned as he arrived with the group's dinner for the night. "The 48 trainers are grouped into groups of three in the semifinals, where only one trainer from each group will advance to the League itself."

    "Bring it on!" Ash smiled as he battled a huge statue boss on the TV screen. "I think I can do this!"

    ---------

    That night, Ash laid awake in bed as he contemplated his upcoming matches. I can't sleep...maybe a stroll by the lake will clear my head. he thought as he climbed out of bed, being careful not to wake up Misty or Brock as he got dressed.

    [Ash, what's the matter?] Tintri asked as Ash started for the door. [It's not like you to be up at 11 PM...]

    "I know, Tintri, but with all that's going to be going on tomorrow, I can't sleep." Ash explained as he motioned for Tintri to climb on his shoulder. "So I thought maybe a walk around the lake would clear my head."

    After writing a note explaining where he was in case Misty or Brock woke up, Ash started out the door, and down the hall. After taking the elevator down to the main hall, he followed the paved pathway to the lake. "I've got so many conflicting emotions right now..."

    [Like what?] Tintri asked.

    "Excitement by being here, my pride as a trainer, fear that Team Rocket will somehow find a way to crash everything like what happened back at home..." Ash began

    [Relax--I blasted them a long, long way off.] Tintri smiled. [So they're not coming back to bother us here.]

    "I'm also nervous, especially since Gary's here..." Ash went on, before he spotted Gary looking out at the stars. "Speak of Darkrai..."

    "You couldn't sleep either, huh?" Gary invited Ash to join him by the south shore of the lake. "Up for having a heart-to-heart? I've gotta get a few things off my chest..."

    "Go on and vent--I'll still listen." Ash assured Gary as he settled down in the grass.

    Gary sighed. "The moon tonight...it reminds me of my first night as a Pokémon trainer - the same day that I bilked you out of an Eevee, and leaving you to get Tintri as your first Pokémon. I wonder...are you still mad at me for taking that Eevee Gramps promised you away from you?"

    "Not anymore--Tintri's been the best partner anyone could ask for." Ash replied, petting Tintri as he spoke.

    "Sometimes I wonder what could have been..." Gary went on. "What if you had gotten the Eevee like Gramps had planned? What would you have evolved it into? What would've happened if I had not seen the full moon?"

    He turned business-like again. "But all the woulda-coulda-shouldas and why the toast lands butter side down is for the future."

    "Yeah--today is about the rivalry, and our pride as trainers!" Ash agreed.

    Both boys then proclaimed to the still waters "We will defeat anyone who gets our their way to the top--and that includes each other!"

    ---------

    "Whoa, this place is packed!" Ethan gasped as he and Lyra struggled to find a seat in the crowded stadium the next morning.

    "I'll say...when's Ash gonna be on?" Lyra wondered as she and Ethan found two vacant seats near the front.

    "Depends on how he was seeded in the prelims." Ethan replied as he took a seat.

    In Oak's Lab, Tracey arrived with popcorn. "Any word on how Gary was seeded?" he asked.

    "They showed the bracket just now." Prof. Oak explained as the CGI bracket on the TV screen flew away to reveal the majestic stadium. "Prof. Elm's having a watch party in his lab to cheer both Ash and Gary on."

    In the Ketchum house, Taran arrived with a large bowl of popcorn and bags of chips. "So, where's Ash seeded, dear?"

    "He is the 32nd seed in the final 48." Delia reported as she watched a shot of Ash waving to the crowd on the TV screen. "By comparison, Gary is seed 30."

    She brushed away a tear of pride. Ash, my baby...good luck out there!

    ---------

    The rumble of motorcycles startled the crowd. "What in the world?" Gary asked as the walk of the competitors was interrupted by a gang of delinquents zigzagging across the track and the infield as if it were an extreme sports park.

    Ash caught a glimpse of the torch runner in one of the entrance tunnels, blissfully unaware of the punks and their motorcycles. "He doesn't see them!"

    He watched in horror as a motorcycle cut the runner off, causing him to drop the torch in surprise. "I got it!" Gary dove to catch the torch, moments before League security arrived to deal with the punks.

    As the punks were led away, bikes and all, Gary examined the wounded runner as he moaned in pain. "It looks like the punks' bikes did a number on his ankle...but the torch is okay, at least."

    He offered Ash the torch. "Ash...will you make the final leg of the torch relay while I take care of the runner?"

    "Sure!" Ash replied.

    ---------

    Ladies and gentlemen, please rise and remove your hats, as we honor our League with the regional anthem. the announcer instructed as Ash arrived with the torch, to thunderous cheers.

    A familiar voice started singing "Golden Hearts and Silver Souls" as Ash started up the steps towards the flame cauldron:

    Our golden hearts and our silver souls
    Shining brightly on our homeland,
    Sets the fire of our hope ablaze
    And never will it falter!

    Our courage flies across the land,
    And we rise to meet the challenge;
    So the sun will rise, and the moon will shine
    Upon Johto forever...

    Maybe I'll see the Starwings fly over me again, like at home!
    he thought as he passed the performer's platform, where Clair and a few of her attendants were singing the song:

    May our golden hearts and silver souls
    Shine on the land forever.
    As the golden sun rises in the east
    So will Johto endure.
    Though darkness falls, the stars will shine
    And the silver moon lights the way
    The aurora shines across the sky
    And our path never will be gray...


    So the golden sun will rule the day
    And the night has the silvery moon...
    Clair started the final verse as Ash arrived at the platform with the fuse for the torch.
    And the crystal's sparkle in the dark
    Promises that the light comes soon....


    Ash gently touched the flame to ignite the fuse as the song went on:

    Though we may come from every land
    And in every tongue and color,
    The ideals of love, hope, and peace
    Remain in our hearts forever...


    He heard a loud whoosh and thunderous cheers as three gliders decorated to look like Articuno, Zapdos, and Moltres came flying over the stadium. There they are! The Starwings! Ash smiled as the Moltres glider soared over him, just as the torch flared to life, and Clair and her attendants sang the final chorus:

    May our golden hearts and silver souls
    Shine on the land forever.
    As the golden sun rises in the east
    So will Johto endure.
    Though darkness falls, the stars will shine
    And the silver moon lights the way
    The aurora shines across the sky
    And our path never will be gray...


    To Be Continued...
     
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    #143 Jan 10, 2018
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2018
  4. WavePearl

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    Episode 116a: Love, Pokémon Style (part 1)

    "Okay, Master bracket..." Ash mused as he brought up the massive tournament bracket on the Johto League Web site the next morning.

    After scrolling down past hundreds of names and faces he didn't recognize, he found his picture in one group. "There I am..." he grinned.

    "So, where are you in this massive bracket?" Brock asked as he arrived in the room, intrigued in the millions of names and faces on the computer screen.

    "I am right here, in Group H." Ash replied, proudly pointing at his picture in the bracket. "Any advice on what I can expect?"

    "Well, I did a little research on the competition last night..." Brock began as he pulled up a chair to the desk. "Click on 'Competition Rules', please."

    Once Ash had clicked over to the requested page in a new tab, Brock went on "The semifinal round is a round-robin tournament, where each trainer battles against each other once—with two points for a win, one for a tie, and nothing for a loss. The trainer with the most points in the group stage will move on to the Victory Tournament."

    "That makes a lot more sense than this legalese and weird diagrams..." Ash smiled as he clicked back to the tab with the master bracket. "I think I get what I am supposed to do, but I hope to win anyway."

    After getting up from the desk, he invited Tintri aboard his shoulder. "This is it, bud--what we came all this way to do!"

    ---------

    Ash shielded his eyes as he stepped out of the Pokémon Center and into the sunshine. It's bright today...

    He glanced at the printout of his group he had printed before departing. "Let's see, my first opponent is someone named Macy..."

    "Oh, a Pikachu!" a brown haired girl smiled as she approached Ash, with a Vulpix trotting beside her. "You must be my first opponent if you've got a Pikachu on your shoulder...I'm Macy, by the way."

    "Nice to meet you...I'm Ash, and this is Tintri." Ash replied, petting Tintri all the while.

    "Why does Tintri sit on your shoulder all the time? Shouldn't he be in a Poké Ball?" Macy wondered.

    "Tintri just never really liked being in a Poké Ball--so I let him sit with me and walk with me." Ash explained.

    "That's so sweet!" Macy smiled. "But not half as sweet as Ember!" she grinned, making a grand gesture to the Vulpix that walked beside her.

    "In a battle of toughness, who would win?" Ash challenged.

    "Ember is both sweet and tough!" Macy shot back. The two of them continued exchanging challenges, each one getting louder and louder by the moment:

    "Then I hope you're ready for the shock of your life!"

    "And I hope you're ready to feel the burn!"

    "Oh yeah? I will come at you with the fury of a storm!"

    "And I'll meet you right back with a powerful wildfire!"

    A referee's whistle brought the escalating conversation to a screeching halt before it could turn into an actual battle. "All right, break it up!" Brock called as he pulled Ash and Macy apart. "I love that both of you are fired up and excited, but you need to keep your Pokémon strong for the tournament." he explained.

    Ash did not, however, expect Macy to approach him with heart eyes. "Wow...so courageous, confident, and powerful! Just as a raging volcano creates lightning, so does my love and passion burn for you!"

    "Wait, what?" Ash started to back away, afraid that Macy would tackle him in the throes of love.

    "How would you like to--!" Macy started before spotting Misty approaching them. "Oh, you mean you already have a girlfriend?"

    "What?" Misty gasped. "Let's get one thing perfectly straight here...there is a BIG difference between a girl that is a friend, and a girlfriend, okay? Boys and girls CAN in fact be friends with no romantic implications."

    She went on "Besides, I'm competing in something totally different from you two...my friendship with Ash is just that--a friendship. No more, and no less."

    "Good luck in the Pokethlon." Ash whispered to Misty before hurrying off to to a training arena for last minute preparations. What makes her think I'm boyfriend material? he thought. I've never even met her before today--so I don't know her background, I don't know her interests and tastes...and she probably doesn't even know my background, interests, and tastes!

    "You have to take me out on a date after the match if I win!" he heard Macy call after him, which spurred him to run even faster.

    Misty sighed as Macy hurried off. "What makes her think she and Ash are romantic partners? Ash doesn't look to me like the romantic type."

    She sighed as she started towards the majestic Pokethlon dome near the training arena. "No matter...I have my own competition to prepare for. We'll worry about this later."

    ---------

    "Ready?" the announcer called as a group of Pokethletes braced themselves for the start of the Relay Run. Unlike Misty's previous Pokethlons, Misty now had seven other competitors instead of three in the circular pool.

    [Here we go!] Michelle cried before diving in at the starting gun, allowing her to surface ahead of a Dewgong and an Empoleon. [Speed is better than size!] she taunted as she powered down the backstretch rapids, passing a Milotic on the way to complete her first lap.

    The crowd in the stands watched as the field of eight water Pokémon jockey for position in the pool. They cheered as another one passed the line, and sighed when a Pokémon had to finally stop before the two minute timer was up.

    By the time Misty emerged from the water with fifteen laps some time later, she smiuled when she saw she had come in a solid third place. "Not bad for our Grand Pokethlon debut..."

    [I could've easily broken the 20 lap record with a little more time.] Michele smiled as she shook herself dry.

    "You have to remember that in the Grand Pokethlon, we will participate in all ten events, so you need to save her strength." Misty reminded Michelle as they started towards the locker rooms to prepare for the next event.

    [What was all that with Ash and that girl before?] Michelle wondered. [Ash doesn't look like a ladies' man to me...]

    "He's not...this seems like Temacu 2.0, with Ash as the target for the lovesick lady." Misty replied. "Besides, Macy may lose interest in Ash sooner or later, and go after some other boy."

    ---------

    "Well done on finishing in the top three in the Relay Run." Ash smiled as Misty met him and Brock in the room later that evening.

    "Thanks...did you ever get that Macy girl off your back?" Misty asked.

    "Haven't seen her since our awkward trash talk." Ash replied. "I'm still trying to figure out what makes her think I'm her boyfriend..."

    He turned business-like again. "For now, I'm not gonna worry about that--I'm gonna make up my team for tomorrow's match!"

    "Whoa there, cowboy..." Brock pulled Ash back from the desk. "First rule of battling: Know thy enemy."

    "Yeah--before you throw together a rag tag team that has no chance on this big a stage, it's a good idea to read up on your opponent first." Misty agreed as Brock led Ash to the desk.

    After typing "www.globalpkmnleague.net/johto" into the browser's address bar and bringing up the master bracket from the Johto League homepage, Ash scrolled a little before finding Macy's picture in the Group H block, and opened her profile in a new tab. "Here she is...she has Vulpix, Slugma, and Quilava—all Fire Pokémon."

    "Then you need as many Water types as you can find." Misty replied.

    "But I only have two—River and Brenna." Ash sighed. "I asked Officer Jenny to send over Brenna and have one of my active team sit the match out so Brenna can compete, but where am I gonna get a third Water type?"

    "I'll lend you one of mine that's not competing in a Pokethlon event." Misty replied.

    Brock, meanwhile, motioned for Ash and Misty to look at the computer screen. "You may not want a full water team...I found out that she has something to counter that."

    "I know I'm using River and Brenna, no matter what, but if she may have a counter for that, who should I pick?" Ash wondered.

    With Ash and Misty occupied discussing strategy, Brock clicked over to another tab displaying Ash's team entry form. River and Brenna were already confirmed, but the third Poké Ball was blank. I know just the one for the job... he smiled as he found Aina in the drop down list of Ash's registered Pokémon, selected her, and clicked CONFIRM.

    To Be Continued...
     
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    #144 Jan 13, 2018
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2018
  5. WavePearl

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    Episode 116b: Love, Pokémon Style (part 2)


    Ain't nothin' gonna break my stride!
    Nobody gonna slow me down, oh no!
    I've got to keep on movin'!
    Ash enthusiastically sang along to the 80's pop song on the radio as he got dressed the next morning. Ain't nothin' gonna break my stride!
    I'm runnin' and I won't touch ground, oh no!
    I've got to keep on movin'!


    "Seems someone's excited for their first match..." Misty smiled as she came in the room, giggling a little as Ash continued swaying to the beat of the song.

    "Remember when I competed in the League back home?" Ash explained as he turned down the radio. "Mom sent me a CD of motivational music to pump me up, and that was the first song on there--I consider it my good luck song for major tournaments."

    "It got you to the Sweet Sixteen on Indigo Plateau, and won you the Orange League--here's hoping it will take you farther here." Brock smiled as he arrived with a bag of food. "Breakfast for the aspiring League Champion?"

    "Don't mind if I do..." Ash smiled as he unwrapped the sausage, egg, and cheddar sandwich Brock had given him. "Thanks." he replied in between bites as Misty led the way out the door.

    ---------

    We're underway at the Silver Conference group matches! the stadium announcer called as Ash summoned River to face Macy's Slugma. Do these challengers have what it takes to overcome the other trainers in their group, and make it to the Victory Tournament?

    "River, open with Water Gun!" Ash called.

    Macy just grinned at the oncoming spray of water. "Lava, use Double Team!"

    River balked as what looked like many different Slugmas materialized before her. [Um, which one's the real one?]

    "Look for the one with a shadow!" Ash suggested.

    Woosh! Flamethrower! the announcer commented as River scrambled to avoid a stream of fire.

    She winced from her singed fur as she got up. Jao wiisha nes chiel com yutuul... she sang, creating a watery wave of sound that battered the Slugma.

    Macy gasped at the Disarming Voice. "Lava, come back!" she called as she recalled the Sugma. "Livewire, let's go!"

    Here comes a Pokémon switch. the announcer commented as an Electabuzz materialized before Ash and River.

    Ash just smiled as he recalled River. "Trying to catch me off guard with a surprise? You forget I have a surprise too!"

    He heaved another Poké Ball skyward. "Aina, I choose you!"

    Oh, it's Machop! the announcer commented as Aina materialized on the field.

    "Good thinking on including Aina on Ash's team..." Misty smiled as Aina easily shook off a Thunderbolt.

    "Had Ash gone with a pure Water team like you suggested, he would've been knocked out by now." Brock explained. "I know Aina has some Ground moves as well as her innate Fighting moves, so she would be perfect for an Electric type."

    It's a revolving door of Pokémon! the announcer commented as Macy swapped Pokémon again, returning her Slugma to the field.

    "You know what to do, Aina?" Ash smiled as he saw the Slugma appear.

    [Of course!] Aina grinned before stomping the ground hard, creating an Earthquake that rattled the stadium.

    Hang on, Earthquake! the announcer cried as the fire slug Pokémon was battered by the shifting ground. It managed to hang in there!

    "Lava, try Flamethrower again!" Macy called.

    "Aina, try to detect Lava's attack!" Ash countered.

    He smiled as Lava's attack hit a shining blue shield, before Aina countered with a Cross Chop, knocking the Slugma out.

    ---------

    Back in the stands, Misty smiled as Macy summoned her Quilava. "Any of Ash's entries will have the advantage against Quilava..."

    "I think you spoke too soon..." Brock mused as Aina's attempt at a Karate Chop was met with another Flame Wheel, knocking her out.

    "What? I thought Aina could have swept Macy." Masty gasped as Macy welcomed back her Electabuzz Livewire to face River.

    In the arena, River heaved a Water Gun at Livewire, only for the spray of water to bounce off a shining wall she recognized as Light Screen. [Okay, since the physical approach won't work, let's try the magical approach...]

    She took a deep breath and sang Jao wiisha nes chiel com yutuul...

    "Yes!" Ash cried as the wave of watery sound managed to break through, but he didn't see an electrified fist coming for River! "Oh no!"

    The remaining Pokémon count is 2 to 1. the announcer commented.

    Ash's final Poké Ball at his side made him smile. I may be against the wall, but I'm bringing back a familiar face to try and make a comeback!

    He heaved the Poké Ball skyward. "Welcome back, Brenna!"

    "Brenna?" Misty gasped as the Squirtle materialized. "How'd she get here?"

    "I was surprised to find her on the entry form last night myself." Brock was equally surprised. "But she is one of Ash's most reliable Pokémon besides Tintri, so maybe he let one of his active ones sit this match out so Brenna could compete."

    "I hope Ash knows what he's doing..." Misty worried as she watched the Electabuzz charge a Thunderbolt.

    Her worried look turned to joy as a familiar Water Gun hit Livewire before he could fire. "What?" Macy gasped in shock as she watched Brenna evade a volley of electric fists.

    "I see what Ash wants to do!" Misty smiled as Brenna's next attack was deflected with an Iron Tail. He's countering raw power with a speedy offense!"

    The crowd murmured as a second Iron Tail sent Brenna flying. "Livewire, finish the Squirtle off with a Thunderpunch!" Macy called.

    She watched in horror as Brenna heaved another Water Gun from the air, interrupting the Thunderpunch and knocking the Electabuzz out! "How?" she asked, shocked that her ace Pokémon had been bested by a Water type.

    There's only one Pokémon aside--this match has come down to the wire. the announcer called as Macy welcomed back her Quilava.

    "Okay, Brenna, we can come back and win this!" Ash smiled. "Start with Water Gun!"

    "Counter with a Flamethrower!" Macy shot back.

    The crowd roared as Brenna evaded the fire, then countered a Swift attack with a stream of bubbles. The projectiles managed to collide, creating a smoky cover for a Water Gun to hit the Quilava!"

    Yes! Brenna smiled before heaving another Bubble spray. However, she did not see a Quick Attack, which ended up flipping her on her back, to the crowd's horror.

    "Brenna!" Ash gasped as he hurried to help his Squirtle, aware all the while of the ring of fire headed for her.

    He stopped in his tracks as Brenna unleashed a huge Hydro Pump, using the massive attack to not only hit Quilava with the water, but also with her own body!

    When the mist and smoke cleared some minutes later, the crowd roared when they saw the Quilava swirly eyed! And there goes the battle! the announcer cried. This match's winner is...SILVER!

    ---------

    "Well done, Ash." Brock smiled as the group checked the bracket later that evening. "You now have firm control of Group H with that come from behind win."

    He allowed Ash before the computer screen to see the bracket. "Depending on the outcome of the second match, it's possible that you may only need a tie to advance. Macy, on the other hand, can't advance unless she wins her second match and you lose the next one to force a three-way tie."

    A knock at the door snapped Brock from his lecture. "I wonder who that could be?" Ash asked as he started towards the door, only to find Macy and a Magcargo framed in the doorway. "Macy? What are you doing here?"

    "I came to tell you that was a great match, even though I lost." Macy explained. "Thanks to you, Lava evolved into a Magcargo after the match!"

    She hugged the Magcargo. "No matter what happens, this miracle evolution will always be a reminder of my love for you!"

    "Thanks?" Ash nervously chuckled. "Good luck in your next match too!" he called after Macy as she departed.

    To Be Continued...
     
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  6. WavePearl

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    Episode 117a: Tie One On! (part 1)

    "Nervous at all?" Misty asked Brock as she and Ash located him in the holding room for the Grand Lore Stage the next day.

    "It's just now sinking in that I'm taking part in a Grand Lore Stage." Brock replied as he studied some highlights from elsewhere around the League, including Ash's victory the day before, and Misty and Michelle's commanding win in the Goal Roll earlier in the day. "I'm a little nervous, but I've practiced my material, so I should be okay."

    "Any news from the other events?" Ash asked as he attempted to get a look at Brock's PokeNav.

    "Well, Misty put on a grand show in the Goal Roll of the Grand Pokethlon, and they are still talking about your narrow win over Macy yesterday." Brock motioned for Ash to look at the highlights flashing by on the PokeNav. "Speaking of which...Macy saved herself from elimination by winning her second match, which also means that you and Macy are tied at the top of Group H, even though you only have to face someone named Jackson for your next match. That said, you only need a tie against Jackson in order to go on, while Jackson must win outright to force a three-way tie. On top of that, a second tiebreaker round-robin would be needed should Jackson win outright."

    "Wow..." Ash was impressed.

    Brock just smiled. "But I think you can advance, so go get'em!"

    "Thanks, Brock!" Ash smiled as he and Misty turned to leave. "Break both legs in your performance!"

    ---------

    [...and so I used a Hydro Pump to help me get up, and take out the Quilava at the same time!] Brenna finished her recap of the previous day's battle to the Bulbasaur on the videophone screen.

    [Wow, that's amazing!] the Bulbasaur smiled before she noticed Luce in the background, [Who's that?]

    [This is Luce, one of Ash's Johto Pokémon.] Brenna explained, prompting Luce to wave hello. [Luce, this is Saria, Ash's faithful Bulbasaur.]

    [Nice to meet you.] Luce smiled.

    "Aw, that's so sweet..." Misty smiled as Brenna continued her phone call, with Luce interjecting every so often. "You don't feel guilty about leaving Saria at home?"

    "Not at all--after what happened at the Kanto League, she needed the rest." Ash replied.

    Just then, he noticed Prof. Elm and a boy with pale brown hair talking in the Pokémon Center. "That must be my opponent in the next round..."

    "Oh, Ash, hello!" Prof. Elm smiled as Ash and Misty approached him. "I was giving Jackson here some advice on what to use in the match. Why is Brock not with you?"

    "He's getting ready to take the Grand Lore Stage." Misty explained, showing Prof. Elm that the storyteller before Brock had just started her tale.

    "I'm sure he will do well..he clearly has a passion for the world's folklore." Prof. Elm smiled.

    "Even though you are my next round opponent, I feel safe telling you my problem..." Jackson told Ash. "When I left on my own journey, I started with a Chikorita named Mint. Mint has only recently evolved into Meganium, but I didn't think to include her on my entry form..."

    "Why not?" Prof. Elm asked.

    "I didn't feel she was ready for this big a stage after evolving so soon." Jackson went on "I thought it would be better to save Mint for the Victory Tournament, but now that I look back, that was a mistake."

    "There's still time to make changes--the match isn't until tomorrow." Prof. Elm assured Jackson.

    Jackson smiled. "Thanks, Professor--maybe Mint is ready for the League!"

    "Bring it on!" Ash challenged as Misty departed for the Grand Lore Stage stadium. "I can't wait to take on Mint!"

    ---------

    Applause rang through the stadium as Misty arrived. I made it...the storyteller before Brock just finished!

    She looked up at the bracket for the Grand Lore Stage on the scoreboard as she found Brock in the entry tunnel leading to the stage. If Brock does well in his performance, he has a chance to advance to the finals.

    "Misty, am I glad to see you!" Brock heaved a relieved sigh when he found Misty approaching him. "I am in fact against the clock for the first round of the Lore Stage--any suggestions for a quickie with punch?"

    "Try that really funny one about the vizir's great feast--that should get the crowd rolling in the aisles." Misty suggested.

    Brock nodded. "Okay then...let's do this."

    ---------

    Number K-93098, telling 'The Great Feast'. the announcer explained as Brock was invited on the stage to perform.

    Once the clock on the scoreboard had displayed thirty minutes, a judge told Brock "The clock will begin when you start talking."

    Brock took a deep breath to ease his nervousness, then began his tale. "In a far away land, the people could not stop complaining about their vizirs--what an official is called in some lands."

    Intrigued murmurs wafted through the crowd at this. "The reason? They argued over anything and everything, and once they started arguing, it was anyone's guess as to when they would stop." Brock explained, nodding to Ethan and Lyra giggling in one of the front rows.

    As if inspired by Ethan and Lyra, soft laughter rippled through the crowd. "Now, the vizirs knew what the people were saying, and they took it upon themselves to show their people they could conduct affairs in a civil manner." Brock went on. "So one day, they went into town, making small talk amongst themselves and saying hello to all they met."

    He paused for a moment, then went on "Suddenly, they found a rare black pearl embedded in the sandy road. Their first thought was to debate what to do with it, but they remembered their promise to conduct affairs civilly. They decided to hold a great feast in honor of their friendship."

    "Aw"s went up at this. "So the ten vizirs all went down to the food shop and used the black pearl to buy enough food for the whole city to be fed for a week and still have leftovers." Brock went on, to awed chatter. "There were potstickers, and puddings, meats both from the land and the sea, vegetables of all kinds, cheese, nuts, Berries, and a bewildering array of desserts."

    "Mm"s filled the air at this. "Just before the vizirs could sit down to their massive meal, the ninth vizir saw that the palace gate was open." Brock continued. "He told the sixth to shut it, but he believed the first vizir should shut it. The first told the eighth, the eighth asked the fourth, and before long, all ten vizirs were fighting over who should shut the gate."

    Laughter filled the arena as the crowd pictured the chaos. "The tenth vizir finally broke it up by saying the next person to say anything or stand up would close the gate." Brock explained as the laughter quieted. "So the ten vizirs began to eat, not saying a word to each other or getting up for seconds."

    Lyra stiffled a giggle of anticipation at what crazy scenario Brock had dreamed up, "The open gate lured hundreds of Pokémon into the palace, and they wasted no time in devouring all the meat." Brock went on. "When every piece of Combusken, beef, and fish was gone, they moved on to the vegetables, fruits, cheeses and desserts. But the vizirs just sat there, oblivious to the Pokémon eating their food."

    More laughter wafted down the rows at this. "Just then, a Growlithe mistook the tenth vizir's lip for a piece of meat, and bit down hard!" Brock announced.

    The crowd howled with laughter as they pictured the tenth vizir dancing in pain. "When the others told him he had to shut the gate, they looked around and realized the food was gone, and there was now no point in closing the gate." Brock concluded. "They went their separate ways, not wanting to argue about the matter any more...at least until the next day!"

    The crowd roared as Brock took a bow, but Ethan and Lyra's applause was the loudest. "Oh, that was so funny!" Lyra raved as she brushed away a tear of laughter. "I'll have to tell Hana that one!"

    "Dundee might love it too." Ethan agreed. "I'll admit Brock has real talent...but you don't get this far on mere talent alone. He really loves doing this, and it shows."

    ---------

    "Let's see..." Ash mused as he examined Jackson's profile on the PC that evening. "in addition to Azumarill and Meganium, he also has a Shiny Magneton, but Meganium is the strongest Pokémon on his team."

    He looked over at Misty and Brock. "Any suggestions, you guys?"

    "Cyndy would work well as a Meganium counter, and Tintri as an Azumarill counter." Misty suggested as she settled in to watch a sitcom on the TV.

    "Your third competitor needs to be able to cover as many of those as possible should Cyndy or Tintri go down." Brock cautioned before joining Misty on the couch with his share of dinner.

    After selecting his third Pokémon and sending in his entry form, Ash looked at the opening credits rolling on the TV as the show's theme song played. "Funny you guys are watching 'The Poke-Mom League'--maybe it will inspire me for my match tomorrow!"

    He looked over at Misty. "Got room for one more?"

    "Sure." Misty invited Ash to join her and Brock on the couch. "It's the one where the boy's mom interferes with his first Gym match."

    "Rerun or not, 'The Poke-Mom League' is always a funny show." Ash grinned as the show began...

    To Be Continued...
     
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  7. WavePearl

    Joined:
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    Episode 117b: Tie One On! (part 2)


    We're underway with the second round of the group preliminaries! the stadium announcer began as Jackson summoned an Azumarill on the field below. Can Ash Ketchum of Kanto continue his hot streak and earn a place in the Victory Tournament?

    "I think I can!" Ash smiled, as if the announcer could hear him. "Tintri, you're up!"

    Sparks are flying from both teams! the announcer called as Tintri darted out of the way of the Azumarill's Water Gun. However, as he circled back around for the attack, he gasped when he saw the Azumarill wasn't there! [Wha...how?]

    [Missed me!] the Azumarill taunted.

    Tintri growled as he charged a Thunderbolt. [YOU TAKE THAT BACK!!!!}

    Both the Thunderbolt and a Bubblebeam clashed at the center of the battlefield. They're both hanging tough. the announcer deadpanned--neither attack didn't look to be gaining an advantage over the other.

    When both attacks fizzled out some moments later, Tintri grimaced as the Azumarill heaved an Icy Wind. This is just like Pryce's gym... he thought as he shivered. I didn't break then, and I won't break here!

    Ash noticed the Azumarill's tail turning silver--a sign it was about to use Iron Tail! "Tintri, use the tail to conduct a Thunder attack! You can do this!"

    [I can!] Tintri weakly smiled before grabbing the Azumarill's metal tail minutes before it could connect!

    Here it comes! Thunder! the announcer cried as Tintri unleashed his attack, engulfing the Azumarill in thunderbolts...

    ---------

    "Hm..." Ash contemplated his next move as Jackson summoned a glittering gold Magneton, to the oohs and ahs of the crowd. <i>Magneton is part Electric and part Steel, so raw power isn't gonna work here.</i>

    He called to Tintri "Use Quick Attack!"

    Tintri whizzed around the stadium perimeter in preparation to charge, only for the Magneton to blast an electrical wave at him! [WAUGGGH!!!]

    Jackson grinned as the Pikachu writhed in pain from paralysis. "Lumi, use Tri Attack!"

    Ash watched in horror as a familiar three colored blast hurled Tintri into the Silver safety barrier! [Ash...I'm...sorry...] he wheezed.

    In the stands, Misty and Brock watched as Ash summoned Cyndy. "Nice choice...Magneton, as a part Steel type, should have the disadvantage." Brock mused as Cyndy's Flamethrower and the Magneton's Thunderbolt clashed in the arena.

    "I wouldn't be so sure..." Misty cautioned as Cyndy fired a cloud of smoke, then rained a Swift attack through the gray cloud while the Magneton was disoriented. "That Magneton looks pretty tough."

    Both of them watched as the Magneton used Double Team to evade another Flamethrower. Cyndy growled with frustration over the seemingly hundreds of Magnetons before her, and blew out a fan of flames in a desperate hope of hitting the real one.

    She gasped when she saw the Thunder Wave and Tri Attack combo that had knocked Tintri out before coming right at her! [Oh no...]

    Ash winced at the massive explosion, but his heart sank as Cyndy weakly crawled back to him. [Sorry, Ash...he got me too...]

    ---------

    "Luce, I choose you!" Ash called as he summoned his Ampharos. "Use Charge Beam!"

    "Lumi, used Thunderbolt!" Jackson commanded.

    The two attacks met in an electric explosion, which the Magneton evaded with Double Team.

    Ash gasped in horror at the familiar attack. I can't let Luce fall here!

    "Luce, jump and use Thunderbolt!" he nearly screamed, hoping that the evasive maneuver would be enough to keep him in the match.

    His panicked look turned to joy as Luce twirled in the air as she charged the thunderbolt, making it fly in all directions to dispel the copies. "Well! That was quite clever." he smiled at the Ampharos when she landed at his side some moments later.

    The hum of a Thunder Wave alerted her that the Magneton was about to use its deadly combo again, prompting her to conjure a shining yellow screen, causing the massive attack to fizzle out. "Good thinking on the Light Screen." Ash smiled. "Now, it's your turn to use Thunder Wave!"

    He smiled as the yellow wave connected. "Okay! Use Charge Beam to spin Magneton around!"

    "Round and round and round he goes, where he stops, no one knows!" Brock grinned as Luce twirled the Magneton in the air with Charge Beam and slammed her opponent to the ground.

    ---------

    This is Gold's last Pokémon--this match has come down to the wire. the announcer reported as Jackson summoned a Meganium to face off against Luce.

    "I'll say..." Misty mused as the majestic flower dinosaur-like Pokémon and the elegant yellow sheep-like Pokémon clashed in the arena. "Jackson's Meganium's pretty tough!"

    "Whoa!" Brock gasped as Luce was wrapped in a Vine Whip, only to be pelted with Razor Leaves.

    In the arena, Ash watched as Luce weaved around a barrage of Body Slams. Should I induce her here? Or would that be unfair to my opponent?

    He looked down at his Mega Ring, the ruby teardrop in white gold glittering in the sun. The rules didn't say that you couldn't use Mega Evolution...and desperate times call for drastic measures...

    He then held his right hand to the sky. Jao wiisha nes chiel com yutuul...

    The power of its trainer's love inspires the Ampharos to evolve even farther! the announcer called as a burst of red light and thunderbolts stunned the crowd. Will it be enough for Silver to stay in the game?

    [HAAAAAHHH!] Luce cried as she emerged from her Mega Evolution with another Thunderbolt.

    She did not, however, see the flurry of Razor Leaves flying at her! [Oof!] she gasped as the spiked leaves sent her sliding back against the Silver safety barrier.

    "Don't give up, Luce!" Ash called. "I induced you because I believe in you, and I love you!"

    Inspired by her master's words, Luce threw herself against the Meganium in an attempt to counter a Body Slam, shoving the Meganium back long enough to fire a Charge Beam. The Charge Beam hooked on to Meganium's neck, allowing Luce to pelt it with more Thunderbolts.

    ---------

    "Why are neither of them taking time to evade attacks?" Misty asked as the Meganium and the Mega Ampharos continued to grapple in the arena.

    "I think that to both the Meganium and Luce, the battle may be of pride as well as glory." Brock explained as he watched another grass-electric explosion fly. "Therefore, both of them are willing to take as much as they are willing to give."

    "That makes sense..." Misty mused as both combatants charged at each other again for one last desperate attack.

    Neither of them, however, expected the force of the clash to knock both Pokémon out! Game Set! This round is a tie! the announcer called. Silver is going to the Victory Tournament!

    "YES!!!" Ash tossed his cap in the air in celebration.

    He offered his hand to Jackson as he met him in the center of the arena. "Well done...I don't know what you did to train your Meganium, but please keep doing it." he smiled as he shook hands with his opponent.

    "And to you likewise--you must love your Ampharos very much in order to Mega Evolve her." Jackson agreed. "Good luck in the Victory Tournament!"

    ---------

    "Okay...Harrison advanced from his group, as did Gary." Ash reported from the PC later that evening.

    "Do they have the final bracket for the Victory Tournament posted yet?" Misty asked as she arrived in the living room with dinner.

    Ash opened the Victory Tournament bracket in a new tab, and gasped when he saw who his opponent was. "No way...I'm facing off against Gary in the first round???"

    To Be Continued...
     
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    #147 Jan 24, 2018
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2018
  8. WavePearl

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    Episode 118a: The Ties That Bind (part 1)

    Ash fumed as he started down the hallway of the dorm towards the food court. I can't believe it...my first-round opponent in the Victory Tournament is none other than Gary, my eternal rival.

    He met Gary emerging from a stairwell. "Well well...if you're gonna get some munchies, get some mints to wash out the sour taste my beating you's gonna leave in your mouth!" Gary smirked.

    "Actually, I was gonna scope out dessert--cause my victory's gonna be sweet after all those years of losses and close calls!" Ash shot back.

    "Oh yeah? Then why did you not let me have that rusted Poké Ball?" Gary countered as the two boys started back down the hall towards Ash's dorm.

    "You still remember that?" Ash gasped. "If I recall correctly, we both got it at the same time!"

    "Eat some more fish to boost that memory, Ash--I got it first, fair and square." Gary shot back. "Just like how I'm gonna sweep you in the match in a few days!"

    "My team is not weak!" Ash roared back. "You'll find I'm more than a match for you!"

    "We'll see in a few days...until then, smell ya later!" With that, Gary continued down the hall and around a corner, leaving Ash to stew by the entrance to his room.

    Misty opened the door a few moments later, snapping him from his angry thoughts. "Ash? Is everything okay? Brock heard you and Gary yelling outside, and asked me to break it up, but it looks like the party's over..."

    "Gary brought up the incident that set our rivalry into motion..." Ash explained as he came inside to the room, aware of Brock practicing his guitar in the main room. "Before I can properly tell you the story, there's something I have to show you guys..."

    After rummaging through his bag and finding a dusty white half of an old Poké Ball in a pocket. he explained to Misty and Brock. "Okay...Brock, some appropriate music, please."

    Brock started a wistful melody in A minor filled with ornamentation as Ash began "This event took place a few days before I left to start my Pokémon journey..."

    ---------

    In Ash's memory, a younger Ash and a younger Gary were fishing by a stream. "Gary and me were fishing by a little stream that ran by Pallet." Ash explains via voiceover as Young Ash casts his line into the water. "At first, things were a little slow, but late in the morning I managed to catch a Magikarp." Just then, Young Ash's line begins jerking in time to Brock trilling a note. "I did my best to reel it in, but it proceeded to slap me in the face before falling back in the water." Ash explains as this happens in the flashback.

    Young Gary proceeds to say some mocking gibberish as Ash continues "Gary, on the other side of the stream, saw the whole thing, and proceeded to taunt me in both my skills and knowledge of Pokémon, or perceived lack thereof. In my embarrassment and humiliation, I was unable to name any of Magikarp's attacks, including the Flail that was used on me."

    Time passes in the flashback to the next day, as Young Ash and Young Gary settle in on opposite sides of the stream. "We had always liked the stream as a fishing and a swimming spot, and after that, the rivalry escalated to the point that both of us were fishing in the same spot, but from opposite banks.

    "Wow..." Misty comments via voiceover as both Young Ash and Young Gary's lines begin jerking in time to another trilled note. "One day, we both managed to catch something at the same time." Ash went on. "It turned out that we both had caught onto the same rusted Poké Ball." Young Ash and young Gary balk in surprise over what they actually caught. "After a brief tug-of-war, the Poké Ball broke in half." Ash explains as Young Ash and Young Gary pull the Poké Ball back and forth for a few moments, until it snaps apart in time to a hard chord from Brock.

    "Though I was willing to accept that the 'fishing battle' was a draw, Gary took it a loss, as, in his words, 'tying with me was just as bad as losing' - a position that he held to this very day." Young Gary sticks out his tongue at Young Ash as the song and the flashback end.


    ---------

    "I kept my half of the Poké Ball as a good luck charm." Ash concluded his story some time later. "I guess losing to Gary and Eevee taught me that I wasn't ready to take him on at the time, but I've come a long way since then--and I am more then prepared for the match!"

    "I love that you are raring to show Gary just how far you've come, but tomorrow is a rest day, with the Victory Tournament starting the day after." Misty reminded Ash.

    "I would recommend that you use tomorrow to prepare your strategy, much like I will be doing for the Grand Lore Stage." Brock agreed. "You've said it yourself many times--the first rule of battle is 'know thy enemy'."

    ---------

    "I'm back!" Misty called as she returned the next day. "We did very well in the Lamp Jump this time, and--!"

    She stopped in her tracks to find the boys had buried themselves in books--Brock to find a story for the next round of the Grand Lore Stage, and Ash preparing his strategy. "Ash is taking this match for the ages very seriously--he hasn't slept since last night." Brock reported as he copied down the bones of a story he liked from a book. "I took a break to sleep after ten, but left Ash some Verde Power to keep awake."

    A smile formed on Brock's face. "Although, with enough caffeine, Ash is quite the computer guru."

    "And...it's done!" Ash smiled as he motioned for Misty to join him by the PC. "I did a little digging on the League Web site, and Gary has ten Pokémon on his profile, so I've made a little video explaining how I plan to counter them all."

    Just as he clicked the ReelView icon, he balked at an error message. "What do you mean, there was an error retrieving 'GaryStrat.avi' from the cloud, please try again later?"

    "Maybe ReelView's servers are under maintenance right now." Misty assured Ash. "You can tell us your strategy over breakfast, okay?"

    ---------

    "Okay...Gary has no particular type preference, just like his grandad Prof. Oak, and he keeps rotating his Pokémon." Brock began as he studied Gary's profile in the Victory Tournament bracket on his PokeNav.

    "You'd be right--he has been that way for as long as I have known him." Ash replied before biting into a sausage egg and cheese biscuit.

    "I will reiterate that your team-building strategy will be crucial, so I got you a little extra help." Brock grinned.

    Just then, Ash saw a shadow flying overhead. "What in the..."

    His confused look turned to joy as a familiar Charizard heaved a Flamethrower into the sky to greet him. "Blaze! What a surprise!"

    [Brock told Liza about your impending match last night, so I made the trip here to lend you a hand.] Blaze purred as Ash hugged him.

    Ash noticed Gary approaching out of the corner of his eye. There you are...

    The village plaza was silent as Ash and Gary stared each other down, each boy not wanting to move a muscle or say anything to the other. Not even the bird Pokémon wanted to sing--the world seemed to be holding its breath to see what the two rivals would do.

    "There you are!" a voice called, startling both Ash and Gary.

    "Gramps?" Gary balked at Professor Oak arriving.

    "Mom?" Ash was equally surprised at the brown haired woman coming to meet him.

    "Surprise." Delia smiled as she embraced Ash. "Professor Oak and I decided to come watch the Silver Conference live instead of on TV. Don't worry, your dad's looking after the house with Mimey."

    "I don't know what the occasion for the staring contest was, but I have a gift for each of you." Prof. Oak began before showing Ash and Gary two upgrade chips. "I've received a lot of new Pokémon data from a colleague, so let me update your Pokedexes for you--it won't take very long."

    "Thanks!" Ash smiled as he eagerly handed Prof. Oak his Pokédex.

    "Yeah, thanks, Gramps!" Gary smiled.

    After waiting a moment for the upgrade to complete Professor Oak returned the Pokedexes "There we are...your Pokedexes are now up to date to the Houen region."

    "Nice!" Misty smiled. "I wonder what else we can learn about the Houen Pokémon we've seen so far."

    "Or what lore those Pokémon have." Brock agreed as he watched Gary pocket his Pokédex and depart.

    "Ash..." Delia began. "Remember that a little preparation goes a long way--Gary's not going to hold anything back tomorrow, so you need to bring your A game."

    "I'll bring more than that--I'm bringing my S game!" Ash smiled.

    "Well, no matter what happens tomorrow, your dad and I will always be proud of you." Delia assured Ash. "Even if you just improve on how you did at home, that's a reason enough to celebrate. You've worked hard to get this far, but remember to stay calm and focused, even though there likely will be some high emotions out there."

    She looked over at Misty and Brock nodding in agreement. "Above all, the Pokémon League is not about winning and losing--it's about doing your very best."

    "Thanks..." Ash smiled as he hugged Delia again, a tear of pride rolling down his cheek. With everyone rooting for me, I'm more determined than ever to beat Gary!

    To Be Continued...
     
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  9. WavePearl

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    Episode 118b: The Ties that Bind! (part 2)




    The Silver Stadium was electric as fans--many of them holding signs and other items emblazoned with the L-marking on Ash's hat or a stylized version of Gary's signature medallion--made their way into the stadium. "Welcome to the Silver Stadium in Johto, where one of the hottest rivalries of last year's Kanto League gets an epic rematch in a new region." a dark brown haired female sportscaster began. "Hello everyone, I'm Tina Carson, where we are getting set for Round 2 of one of the most electrifying matchups of last year's Indigo League--Ash Ketchum vs. Gary Oak."

    She then turned to address her partner, a young man with dull blond hair. "Alex, what's changed since these two young trainers met on an ice field at Indigo Plateau last year?"

    "For one thing, the stakes are higher." the man replied. "The matchup went viral on social media overnight, with 'TeamKetchum' and 'TeamOak' hashtags trending on Chitter, MyTube, Pokebook, and Memogram within hours with no sign of slowing down. Last time, it was only a two on two match--today, these two are also going at it with a full compliment of six Pokémon a side."

    "We should also mention that today's matchup is also a matter of pride--Gary is the grandson of Kanto's own Prof. Oak, and Ash came in the Sweet 16 of the Kanto League." Tina continued via voiceover as the TV cameras cut to show scenes of Macy, Jackson, Ethan, Lyra, and fans excitedly showing off signs and other items supporting Ash or Gary. "But today these rivals meet as equals in Silver Stadium, with Ash matching how he did last year."

    The scene cut away to show the stadium. "Today's match is a full six on six battle with a random selection of battlefields." Alex explained. "Our competitors can expect to see grass, water, rock, and ice-based fields..."

    ---------

    "Harrison!" Ash called as he dashed through the boys' locker rooms, where Harrison was gathering his belongings. "I wanted to say congrats on winning your match earlier today." he explained.

    "Thanks." Harrison smiled. "I'm amazed how everyone is going nuts over your match here in a bit...I really hope you win, so I can get a chance to battle you in the quarterfinals."

    "I'll do my best." Ash smiled. "So, are you part of my team?"

    Harrison nodded. "'TeamKetchum' all the way."

    After waving goodbye to Harrison, Ash emerged from the locker room to find a crowd of fans with "TeamKetchum" signs and Tina waiting for him. "Ash, what's going on in your head right now as you prepare to face your opponent?" Tina asked him.

    "Well, aside from nervousness, I'm feeling confident and focused." Ash replied. "I understand that Gary's not going to hold anything back, so I need to bring more than my A game--I'm bringing my S game!"

    More cheers and applause filled the air as Ash's fans suddenly heard Gary's cheerleaders chanting "Go, TeamOak! Go TeamOak! Go TeamOak! Go! Go!" as Alex finished up his own interview with Gary on the other sideline.

    Inspired, Harrison started cheering "Brickabracka, firecracka, sis boom bah! Ash Ketchum, Ash Ketchum, rah, rah, rah!" as he emerged from the locker room.

    "Brickabracka, firecracka, sis boom bah! Ash Ketchum, Ash Ketchum, rah, rah, rah!" the fans joined in, eagerly chanting as Ash made his way to the Silver side of the arena. "Brickabracka, firecracka, sis boom bah! Ash Ketchum, Ash Ketchum, rah, rah, rah!"

    "As you can hear, excitement and spirit is running high for both sides." Tina continued over the chanting. "When we come back, the match of the ages will finally get underway!"

    ---------

    [Brickabracka, firecracka, sis boom bah! Ash Ketchum, Ash Ketchum, rah, rah, rah!] Tintri cheered, waving a pair of fans in the air as Misty arrived in the stands, then hurried to rejoin his master as Brock, Brenna, Ami, Hinata, and Hitomi watched Ash made his way into the arena, flanked by his own parcel of cheering fans. "How did the Ring Drop go?" Brock asked as Misty took the seat next to him overlooking the Silver side of the arena

    "Very well--Aurora turned out to be a great choice for the Ring Drop." Misty replied, aware of the chanting around her. "Everyone seems to be getting into the spirit of Ash vs. Gary, Part 2..."

    "They've been getting into it ever since the matchup was announced..." Brock explained as he perused Pokebook on his PokeNav. "Have their own hashtags and everything. Not just that, but kids are watching it in class, and offices everywhere are having watch parties, so this is a pretty big deal."

    "This would explain all the 'TeamKetchum' and 'TeamOak' hashtags all over my own Pokebook feed..." Misty mused.

    A wave of cheers snapped her to attention--Ash and Gary were taking their places in the arena! "Log off, Brock--the match is about to start!"

    ---------

    This is it! The Victory Tournament gets underway with one of the most hotly anticipated matches in League history! the announcer began as Gary summoned a large blue dinosaur-like Pokémon. Two rivals have come to this storied arena, but only one will advance farther into the tournament!

    "Aina, I choose you!" Ash called as he heaved a Poké Ball skyward, revealing Aina before the huge Pokémon Gary commanded. I've seen Gary with a Nidoking before, so this must be the female Nidoqueen! I hope striking first with a Fighting type gets me the advantage!

    "Nidoqueen, start with a Rock Smash!" Gary called.

    [WAAAAAAAHHH!!!] Aina cried as she did her best to leap and jump past the rocks raining around her.

    "Focus, Aina! Use Superpower!" Ash commanded.

    He smiled as Aina managed to push through the oncoming rocks thanks to the familiar aura of Superpower. But his confidence turned to horror as Gary's Nidoqueen Ursaring-hugged her, and then fired a Hyper Beam at point blank range, easily knocking Aina out of the match.

    "Are all your Pokémon gonna be that easy?" Gary taunted, to cheers from his fans in the stadium.

    "That was just the scout--now for the heavy hitters!" Ash shot back as he heaved another Poké Ball skyward. "River, I choose you!"

    "Nidoqueen, return!" Gary called before finding a second Poké Ball of his own. "Magmar, let's turn up the heat!"

    Ash gasped as the Magmar unleashed a Flamethrower, but heaved a sigh of relief as River weaved around the fire and fired a Water Pulse! The crowd watched in awe as the Magmar went flying up into the air, blowing out the familiar kanji of Fire Blast as he fell back to earth.

    Some "ooh"s filled the air as the Magmar and the Fire Blast landed on River at the same time! Hammered where it hurt! the announcer commented as the Magmar used a point blank Flamethrower to weaken River even more!

    [I...must...be...strong...] River heaved, to some applause as she stood up and brushed away the char. [But I'm stronger than you, Mr. Volcano!]

    With that, she heaved another Water Pulse in the direction of another wave of flames, buying her enough time to streak through the water her previous attack created and slam into the Magmar with Aqua Jet, knocking it out.

    "Well, color me impressed." Gary smirked. "Let's see how Miss Mousie fares against some real firepower!"

    Ash was awed at the familiar giant turtle with water cannons in its shell that Gary summoned. That is Blastoise - the final form of Squirtle, and the most powerful Pokémon on Gary's team! But I'll just fight water with water!

    He took a deep breath and called "River, try Bubblebeam!"

    The stadium seemed to hold its breath as the wave of Hydro Pump and the flurry of rainbow bubbles clashed in the middle of the arena...

    To Be Continued...
     
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    #149 Jan 31, 2018
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2018
  10. WavePearl

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    Episode 119: Can't Beat the Heat!

    Previously, on "Pokémon Moonlight Silver"...

    Ash was awed at the familiar giant turtle with water cannons in its shell that Gary summoned. That is Blastoise - the final form of Squirtle, and the most powerful Pokémon on Gary's team! But I'll just fight water with water!

    He took a deep breath and called "River, try Bubblebeam!"

    The stadium seemed to hold its breath as the wave of Hydro Pump and the flurry of rainbow bubbles clashed in the middle of the arena...


    After what felt like an eternity, River tried to dive behind a rock. She did not, however, expect the Hydro Pump to blast through the rock, knocking her out. [Ash...I'm sorry...]

    Ash was unfazed by losing his Marill. "You made a heroic effort, River...now get some rest." he smiled as he recalled the fainted Marill and returned to his end of the arena. "Luce, let's go!"

    He watched in horror as Gary's Blastoise charged at Luce, but much to his relief, Luce didn't even bat at eye as Blastoise slammed into her with Skull Bash. If anything, she had only slid backwards from the force of the attack.

    [You forget I can give you the shock of your life!] Luce taunted before charging a huge ball of electricity.

    "Blastoise, use Rapid Spin to deflect the Electro Ball!" Gary called.

    Luce, meanwhile, braced herself as Gary's Blastoise whirled in her direction, dispelling her first attack on the way. She managed to grab the Blastoise some seconds later, and pin him to the ground. [Gotcha now!]

    [Oh yeah?] the Blastoise growled as he wriggled free from Luce's grip and blasted a Hydro Pump at Luce!"

    "Luce, come back!" Ash quickly recalled Luce, leaving the Hydro Pump to splatter against the Silver safety barrier. "Tintri, you ready?"

    [Oh yeah!] Tintri squeaked as he dashed into the battlefield.

    Maybe speed will provide a good advantage over Blastoise! Ash thought as Tintri wove around Blastoise's second attempt at Hydro Pump, then tried to fire a Thunderbolt,

    Tintri grimaced as his attack was deflected by Rapid Spin. Let's try something I know will hit--Shockwave!

    But before he could start charging the attack, he did not expect Blastoise to pounce on him and bite him! [Ash...he was too much...]

    ---------

    Time out--Silver. the announcer called as Ash made a T signal to the referee, then hurried over to the sidelines, where Brock was waiting.

    "Just watching Ash and Gary battle like this reminds me of how they used to always re-enact favorite battles from the movies and their favorite TV shows." Prof. Oak sighed with nostalgia. "Gary didn't mind playing the villain almost all the time, either--but I did make a rule to let him be the hero every once in a while."

    "Ash may be down now, but he's far from out." Delia agreed. "Ever since he was very little, he has always had a courageous and heroic spirit. Even though he took more to music than sports, he would never give up on learning a song until he got it right--I have never had to remind him to practice. He just knows when it's time to practice, and doesn't let the wrong notes or difficult passages get him down--just like his Pokémon training." She let that hang as the time out expired.

    ---------

    "Okay...Gary summons Arcanine, and Ash is sending out Mina..." Brock mused as the battle resumed in the arena. "Even though Blastoise was worn down a little from before, it is fairly safe to assume that Gary is saving Blastoise for last."

    "Whoa!" Misty gasped as Arcanine used Take Down to charge straight at Mina, who responded with Wing Attack.

    In the arena, Ash watched as Arcanine evaded the attack, and traps Mina inside a fiery tornado he recognized as Fire Spin. "Mina, break free with a Sky Attack!"

    The stadium was in awe as Mina, now in the form of what looked like a red streak, broke free from the fire to fly high in the air, slamming into Arcanine moments later. "Bullseye." Ash smiled as Mina landed at his side.

    He watched Gary summon Nidoqueen again. "Careful, Mina--Nidoqueen can also learn Hyper Beam, so it's best to assume Gary's Nidoqueen knows it."

    [Got it!] Mina smiled before flying back into battle.

    She was caught by surprise as Nidoqueen forced her to the ground with a Double Kick! [Ow...] Mina winced before spotting a familiar orange beam aimed at her. She quickly worked up the strength to take flight, veering away from the Hyper Beam!

    [HAH!!!!!] Mina streaked back at Gary's Nidoqueen and slammed into her with an Aerial Ace, finally knocking out the dinosaur Pokémon.

    Misty gasped as Gary summoned a Scizor. "I have a bad feeling about this..." she stammered as Mina tried to blow away the metallic bug with a Hurricane, only to receive a Metal Claw to the face.

    "Ash set up his entries with raw power in mind, and it's possible that his two remaining Pokémon will have trouble against Scizor." Brock explained as Ash welcomed back Luce to the fight. "But this is Ash, here--comebacks when against the wall are some of his best comebacks!"

    In the arena, Luce easily absorbed a Quick Attack, then fired a Charge Beam, which Scizor evaded and countered with Metal Claw. But Ash did not expect Scizor to lift and throw Luce into the air. "NO!!!" he screamed as Luce succumbed to a Swift attack.

    Gasps filled the stadium at the ruthless turn of events. "Blaze, see if you can win this one for me!" Ash cried as he summoned his Charizard onto the field to face Gary's Scizor.

    The remaining Pokémon count is 3 to 1! The battle has become one sided! the announcer called as Blaze landed on the field.

    Gary, meanwhile, was unfazed. "I figured that you'd save your Charizard for last..."

    He then turned business-like again. "Scizor, let's finish this with Steel Wing!"

    Ash swallowed hard as he held his right hand to the sky, aware of the Scizor flying in to attack Blaze all the while. Jao wiisha nes chiel com yutuul...

    "WHAT???" Gary gasped as Blaze was engulfed in a flash of red light and thunderbolts, which shielded Blaze from the Scizor's attack.

    Wow! The power of Mega Evolution! the announcer cried. Will it be enough to turn the tide of battle for Silver? Or will Gold advance to the next round? he asked as Blaze emerged as Mega Charizard Y.

    The battle has become one sided indeed... Ash grinned. "Blaze, use Flamethrower!"

    The Scizor jumped to avoid the attack, but a determined smile formed on Ash's face. "You're not getting away this time!" he cried as Blaze took flight, delivering a wave of fire to Scizor.

    "You still have two more to face, if you were expecting a miracle..." Gary cautioned before heaving a Poké Ball skyward "Meet Golem!"

    "Wow..." Misty was impressed at the massive rock Pokémon.

    "Even with Mega Evolution, Blaze will have a hard time against a Golem, thanks to the double weakness to Rock types." Brock explained as the Golem stunned blaze with a Magnitude attack. "But Ash is not backing down--he's gonna do everything he can to mount a comeback."

    "Come on, Team Ketchum! Let me hear you!" Misty called to the Ash supporters in the stands as Blaze attempted to Seismic Toss Golem, but failed.

    "No wonder Blaze struggled--a Golem is second only to Snorlax in terms of mass." Prof. Oak as he and Delia watched Golem land back on its feet and start rolling at Blaze.

    Ash recognized the attack as Rollout. Bad flashbacks of Whitney... "Blaze, use Dragon Rage!"

    "Brickabracka, firecracka, sis boom bah! Ash Ketchum, Ash Ketchum, rah, rah, rah!" Misty and the other Ash supporters in the stands cheered as Blaze heaved a wave of purple flames, engulfing the Golem and knocking it out.

    ---------

    Gold now has one Pokémon remaining! Can Silver manage to complete a stunning comeback? the announcer asked the crowd.

    "Brickabracka, firecracka, sis boom bah! Ash Ketchum, Ash Ketchum, rah, rah, rah!" Misty and Brock led the cheers from the stands, which resonated around the stadium. "Brickabracka, firecracka, sis boom bah! Ash Ketchum, Ash Ketchum, rah, rah, rah!"

    Ash and Blaze watched as Gary summoned Blastoise again. "Hear that?" he asked Blaze as the fans cheered for him. "The world's cheering for us."

    [I'll do my best to give'em a comeback win for the history books!] Blaze purred before heaving a Flamethrower.

    The cheers were silenced as Blaze's attack was deflected by Rapid Spin, but then the huge bird-dragon took a Hydro Pump to the face.

    Relieved applause filled the air as Blaze took to the skies, bolstered by millions of fans cheering "Brickabracka, firecracka, sis boom bah! Ash Ketchum, Ash Ketchum, rah, rah, rah!" down below.

    "Blaze, try to approach from the air!" Ash called as Blaze wove around volley after volley of Hydro Pumps.

    [I'm trying!] Blaze called back. [I just need to find an opening!]

    "Even though we were all taught that Fire attacks aren't very effective against Water-types, sometimes they do work." Brock explained to Ethan and Lyra. "Blaze will need a close-range attack to have a good shot of knocking out Blastoise against the type advantage."

    He let that hang before rallying the crowd. "Come on everyone! Lend Blaze your power!"

    "Brickabracka, firecracka, sis boom bah! Ash Ketchum, Ash Ketchum, rah, rah, rah!" Misty resumed leading the cheers for the courageous Mega Charizard Y weaving around water volleys.

    Just then, something dawned on Ash as he looked around the battlefield. Say...although Blaze's attacks have missed Blastoise, the fire that has hit the rocks have been left red hot and somewhat melted...

    An idea came to him. "Blaze, burn the field instead of attacking Blastoise!"

    "What???" Gary gasped as his Blastoise was held helpless by the searing hot ground. I didn't know Ash was gonna do this...this is something that not even a type advantage could cover.

    "It's working!" Lyra cried as Blastoise's efforts to cool the field only ended up cloaking it in steam.

    "Come on Blaze!" Ethan called as Charizard and Blastoise grappled in close combat. "You can do it!"

    He watched as Blastoise managed to duck out of a Dragon Rage, but Blaze attempted to throw him with a Seismic Toss. In despration, Blastoise tried to bite Blaze, but Blaze was unfazed as he easily picked up Blastoise and flew skyward, diving to the still hot ground and slamming him!

    Murmurs filled the air as Blaze landed by Ash's side. "Did we do it?" Ash asked.

    Blaze watched as Blastoise struggled to get up, but succumbed to the damage it took! [Congrats, bud--you just finished one for the history books.]

    GAME SET! By a miracle, this match's winner is Silver! the announcer cried, making the stadium explode in cheers!

    Ash stood motionless as what he had just done sank in. "I did it...I finally beat Gary..."

    He heaved his hat skyward in pure euphoria as Blaze roared in triumph. "I FINALLY BEAT GARY!!!!"

    After catching his hat, he hugged Blaze. "Thank you...I couldn't have done it without you."

    [Anytime, sport.] Blaze purred. [You gave your all, and I gave mine--that's what partners do.]

    ---------

    "Ash?" Gary asked as he met Ash by the lake later that night. "Got a minute?"

    "What is it?" Ash wondered as Gary sat by him on the shore. "You're not mad about losing today, are you?"

    "Nah--I'm not ashamed that I lost." Gary assured Ash. "You wholeheartedly earned your win, and I have mad respect for your incredible comeback--kudos."

    He rummaged for something in his bag for a moment. "You remember that fishing contest when we were little, when we found that old Poké Ball?" he asked as he unearthed the red half of the Poké Ball. "I've been thinking about it...when I admittedly tied in that contest, my own brashness and naive dreams of glory got the better of me, and I took it as a loss when it really wasn't a loss in the first place."

    Ash retrieved the white half of the Poké Ball. "Let's see if these will fit back together at all."

    Much to Ash's joy and Gary's relief, the two halves fit easily back together with a click. "They fit!"

    Gary just grinned. "I may have given ya a lot of flack before, but I'm done being Mr. Cocky. You won fair and square today, and I accept that."

    The two of them shook hands as friends for what seemed like the first time in a long time. "No matter what happens in your next match, Ash...I'm on Team Ketchum now."

    "Thanks!" Ash smiled as he embraced Gary--no more his rival, but his friend.

    "Although, what was that magic song you sang that turned Blaze into a bird-dragon?" Gary wondered.

    "That was my Heart Song--and how I can induce Mina, Luce, and Blaze to Mega Evolve." Ash explained. "A Heart Song, when sung, conveys the trainer's emotion to the Pokémon and resonates with the emotions in the Pokémon's heart, inducing Mega Evolution in certain Pokémon."

    Gary nodded, and motioned for Ash to continue. "No two trainers will have the same song, and even then, many trainers choose to never sing their Heart Song..."

    To Be Continued...
     
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  11. WavePearl

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    Episode 120: Playing with Fire!

    "Tintri, here we go!" Ash called as he watched his faithful Pikachu dart onto the Silver side of the arena to begin a new battle on a plains field the next morning.

    "Indra, let's do this!" Harrison called, summoning an exotic green lizard Pokémon with yellow stripes onto the Gold side of the arena.

    Ash balked at the odd Pokémon, and made a T signal to the referee. A time out already--it seems Silver wants to size up the opponent. the announcer commented as Ash read up on his opponent:

    "Kecleon, the color swap Pokémon. It has ability to alter its body colors to match its surroundings. However, it will revert to its original colors if it is startled."

    "I see..." Ash mused, pocketing his Pokédex as his time out expired. "Tintri, try to catch Indra off guard!"

    [Where?] Tintri called back as Indra seemingly disappeared. [I can't see him!]

    He did not expect to see a long prehensile tongue to lick him from seemingly nowhere. [Oh, ew! Ew!]

    Harrison watched as his Kecleon tossed Tintri with its tongue. "Indra, use Psybeam!"

    Tintri braced himself as he took the rainbow beam the Kecleon fired, then darted away into the grass in an attempt to barricade himself.

    He gasped as Indra began cutting the grass with his tongue. I have to do something before he finds me...but what?

    Inspired, he ran behind the cloaked Kecleon and grabbed its tail, thanks to being able to see its coils. [HAAAAAAAAH!!!] he screeched as he fired a Thunderbolt, knocking Indra out.

    Harrison was unfazed. "You should recognize Hanzo!" he called as he heaved another Poké Ball skyward.

    Oh yeah--the Sneasel Harrison captured before the tournament opened! Tintri remembered as a familiar Sneasel materialized before him.

    He started charging another Thunderbolt, but did not see Hanzo charging at him with silvery claws!

    Ash winced when he heard the KA-WHANG! of Hanzo's attack impacting. "Tintri!"

    [I'm sorry...] Tintri wheezed as Ash picked him up. [I never saw that...coming...]

    "You did fine, okay?" Ash assured Tintri before he was whisked away on a rescue stretcher to the onsite Pokémon Center.

    He then heaved a Poké Ball skyward. "River, here we go!"

    River attempted firing a Water Gun, but was met by Hanzo's metallic claws. In desperation, River tried ramming the Sneasel with an Aqua Jet. The wave sent Hanzo stumbling backwards, to the crowd's murmurs.

    Ash smiled. "River, use Water Pulse!"

    Harrison winced as the shining wave knocked his Sneasel out. "Morpheus, you're up!"

    Ash watched as a yellow humanoid Pokémon he recognized as Hypno appeared on the Gold side of the field. "River, try Disarming Voice!"

    Jao wiisha nes chiel com yutuul... River's tiny voice rang through the stadium, but the Hypno didn't even bat an eye at the glowing sound wave that bounced right off of it.

    [You are getting sleepy...] Morpheus began as waves of hypnosis went flying from his hands, making River slump to the ground, asleep.

    Once sure River was asleep, Morpheus conjured a Psychic blast, sending River flying against the Silver safety barrier.

    That was cheap... Ash thought as he found his next Poké Ball. "Luce, come on out!"

    He sweatdropped and the crowd roared with laughter as Luce materialized on the Silver side sleeping peacefully. [Well, well well...saves me a bit of work!] Morpheus grinned as he conjured a blue energy ball in an attempt to extract Luce's dream.

    [mm...what?] Luce woke with a jump, dissipating the Dream Eater attack before it could extract her dream. [Trying to have my dreams for a snack, are we?] she growled as she charged a Charge Beam. [Go snack on someone else's dream!]

    Shocked by the turn of events, Harrison made a T signal to a referee. Time out--Gold. the announcer reported as Harrison asked the referee a question...

    ---------

    Meanwhile, in the Grand Pokethlon Dome, Misty and Michelle made their way into the arena for the next event. "Next up is the Circle Push--do you remember that event?" Misty asked her faithful Golduck.

    [Yeah, the one where you try and score the most points by staying in the circle, and pushing others out.] Michelle replied. [I still have fond memories of Ami's grand showing...]

    "Well, for now, let's put on a show of our own for this crowd." Misty reminded Michelle.

    She looked out over to the main arena in the distance. Ash...I hope you're giving your all against Harrison...

    The announcer calling "Ready!" snapped her to attention. "Remember, Michelle--sometimes it's a better idea to start with the low scoring circles instead of going for the high scoring ones right away."

    [I'll keep that in mind.] Michelle replied as she braced herself for the start of the competition...

    ---------

    "Mina, let's go!" Ash heaved another Poké Ball skyward.

    "Titan, I choose you!" Harrison did likewise, revealing a Steelix of his own in the arena.

    "Mina, try Aerial Ace, then I'll try to induce you!" Ash called as the Steelix started whipping up a Sandstorm.

    [No go, Ash--I can't see anything!] Mina called back as she tried desperately to fly through the sand.

    "MINA!!!" Ash screamed as Titan hit Mina from below with a Dig attack, sending her fluttering to the ground. Luckily, Mina managed to right herself and tried to Pursue the Steelix, gaining a pinkish aura.

    Ash growled in frustration as Titan's silver tail whacked Mina to the ground. So much for that idea... he thought as he found Luce's Poké Ball and re-summoned the Ampharos.

    [You forget your thunderbolts can't hurt me!] Titan taunted as he wrapped himself around Luce, making the Charge Beam she was charging fizzle out.

    Ash winced as he watched Titan use Crunch on Luce. "Luce, try Power Gem!"

    [HAH!] Luce created a shining diamond and sent it flying at Titan, freeing her and knocking her opponent out. [Easy as pie.] she assured Ash.

    She saw Harrison had summoned Anubis as his next Pokémon. [Let's show him the power of Mega Evolution!]

    Ash nodded, then held his right hand skyward. Jao wiisha nes chiel com yutuul...

    Here it is--Mega Evolution! the announcer commented as Luce was engulfed in a burst of red thunderbolts.

    When Luce emerged as Mega Ampharos some moments later, the crowd gasped as Anubis braced for the Charge Beam Luce was charging, then redirected the attack back at Luce! "No way...I didn't know Houndoom could use Counter!" Ethan gasped as Luce fainted from the power of the attack.

    "Nor did I know that Houndoom could Counter a Mega Pokémon." Brock was equally surprised as Ash summoned Aina.

    Harrison was just as surprised. "How? You must be very brave, pitting a Machop against a Houndoom..."

    "I believe in Aina." Ash replied before turning business-like again. "Use Superpower!"

    "We need to encourage Ash a bit..." Ethan mused as Lyra joined him and Brock in the stands, just as a Flamethrower from Anubis broke Aina's Superpower aura.

    "Let's see if our little cheer from his match yesterday still has its magic!" Lyra suggested before cheering "Brickabracka, firecracka, sis boom bah! Ash Ketchum, Ash Ketchum, rah, rah, rah!"

    "Brickabracka, firecracka, sis boom bah! Ash Ketchum, Ash Ketchum, rah, rah, rah!" Brock, Ethan, and several others in the stands joined in as Anubis charged to bite Aina, and Aina attempted to Karate Chop Anubis. When both attacks missed, Aina next attempted Submission on Anubis, which pinned Anubis to the ground.

    Once sure the Houndoom was not getting up, Aina leaped in the air for a Body Slam...

    ---------

    "Ash is doing very well in this match. Harrison is down to his last Pokémon—Apollo the Blaziken." Professor Oak mused as he joined the group in the stands.

    "I don't know..." Lyra cautioned. "Aina still has to battle another fully evolved Pokémon." She let that hang as the Blaziken kicked away the Machop into the safety barrier, to concerned murmurs from the crowd.

    "Aina..." Ash began as Aina shakily got up. "Try to stay away from Apollo as much as you can."

    [Noted--if they make Pokémon aspirin, I'm gonna need some in the morning.] Aina moaned as she got up.

    "Try Superpower!" Ash called.

    He watched in horror as Apollo intercepted the attack, then countered with Fire Punch, knocking Aina out.

    Both sides now have only one Pokémon remaining! This match has come down to the wire! the announcer reported as Ash summoned Blaze.

    Okay...I know this will be challenging as Blaze is a high level Pokémon, plus Ash can induce him into Mega Charizard Y. Harrison thought. I, on the other hand, have not awakened my Heart Song, and so I can't induce Apollo.

    Both trainers called at the same time "Use Flamethrower!" creating a huge ball of fire in the stadium...

    To Be Continued...
     
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  12. WavePearl

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2012
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    Episode 121: Johto Photo Finish

    Number K-93098, performing "The Legend of Daniel the Daring." an announcer explained as Brock took his place in the Grand Lore Stage arena.

    Brock looked over at the main arena in the distance. Ash...I don't know how you're doing against Harrison right now, but here's hoping this tale will inspire you!

    With that, he began his tale. "Long ago in Kanto, there lived a king with three sons--Gabriel, Nicholas, and Daniel were their names, in order from eldest to youngest. They were well known around the world as fine, brave young men, and many songs were sung and tales were told of their exploits...."

    ---------

    Both sides have one Pokémon aside! This match has come down to the wire! the announcer cried as the massive fireball created from Blaze's and Apollo's attacks dissipated into a giant smoke cloud.

    "Blaze, use Flamethrower again!" Ash called, smiling as Blaze heaved another fiery wave.

    In the stands, Ethan balked as Apollo leaped over Blaze's attack. "Wow! I didn't know a Blaziken could jump that high!"

    "I'll say..." Lyra was equally impressed.

    Say...if Apollo can't move freely in the air... Ash thought. "Blaze, use Dragon Rage!"

    He balked as Apollo veered away from the purple fire with a Quick Attack, then charged at Blaze! [Sometimes the better part of valor is discretion!] Blaze reminded Ash as he looped around Apollo's next wave of Flamethrower, then circled back around to use Flamethrower himself, creating another huge explosion!

    He was knocked backwards by a Fire Punch, but shook off the pain and heaved the most powerful Flamethrower he could, hitting Apollo point blank!

    "Come on, Apollo!" Harrison called. "Try Quick Attack again!"

    Now's my chance! Ash smiled as Apollo shakily got up. I think I have Apollo on the ropes!

    He next held his right hand skyward. Jao wiisha nes chiel com yutuul....

    Harrison balked as Blaze was engulfed in a burst of fire and red thunderbolts. Mega Evolution! Will the power of love allow Silver to pull ahead? the announcer asked as Blaze emerged as Mega Charizard Y.

    "Blaze, use Seismic Toss!" Ash called to the majestic bird-dragon on the field.

    "How's Ash doing?" Misty asked as she arrived in the row where Ethan and Lyra were watching.

    "It's neck and neck--Ash just induced Blaze in hopes of another miracle." Lyra reported back as she watched Blaze circle around in the air to home in on Apollo.

    "I know just what he needs..." Misty smiled as she toyed with the medal she had just earned in the Grand Pokethlon.

    As Blaze streaked towards Apollo, she cheered "Brickabracka, firecracka, sis boom bah! Ash Ketchum, Ash Ketchum, rah, rah, rah!"

    "Brickabracka, firecracka, sis boom bah! Ash Ketchum, Ash Ketchum, rah, rah, rah!" Ethan and Lyra cheered as Blaze slammed into Apollo, sending him flying into the Gold safety barrier.

    Game Set! This match's--! the announcer started before Apollo shakily stood up. Wait, Gold still has power left!

    Ash watched as Blaze heaved another Flamethrower to counter Apollo's Quick Attack. "Okay! Try Seismic Toss!"

    He did not, however, expect Apollo's feet to ignite, allowing him to deliver a powerful flaming kick to Blaze! "BLAAAAAAAAAZE!!!"

    [HAAAAAAAHHHH!] Blaze roared back as he heaved a desperate Dragon Rage to meet Apollo's Flamethrower, despite the massive attack he had just taken.

    When the smoke cleared some moments later, both Pokémon struggled to get up, to the murmurs of the crowd as Apollo was up first. "Blaze...are you okay?" Ash hurried to his Mega Charizard Y's side.

    [I'm sorry, champ...] Blaze wheezed. [I did my best, but that fiery kick attack--whatever THAT was---was just too...] He then collapsed to the ground in exhaustion.

    Ash listened in horror as the announcer told the crowd Game Set! This match's winner is...Gold! "No..." he finally whispered. "I was so close..."

    He did his hardest to fight back tears as he ran to collect his fallen companion...

    ---------

    "...A hundred kings and queens in all sat down to the wedding feast. The wedding lasted ninety-nine days and ninety-nine nights in all, and every night was better than the one before." Brock finally concluded his epic tale some time later.

    The crowd exploded in applause as Brock took a bow. Number K-93098 is the winner, and is worthy of being called a Master of Lore! the announcer cried as the judges arrived with a gold medal depicting a rainbow coming from an open book.

    "Thank you..." was all Brock could say as the gold medallion was slipped around his neck, to thunderous cheers.

    As he departed the Grand Lore Stage arena, he found Ash on a bench wiping tears from his eyes. "What happened?" he asked as Misty, Ethan, and Lyra arrived.

    "I...lost to Harrison." Ash choked out a reply as he wiped away a tear. "Harrison's Blaziken used this crazy powerful attack that even took down Blaze in Mega Evolved form!"

    Delia arrived soon afterwards. "Oh, Ash...what happened?" she asked as she joined him on the bench.

    Ash collected himself, then explained "It wasn't so much a crushing defeat as it was a crazy powerful attack Blaze had no chance against, even when Mega Evolved."

    "Do you feel comfortable talking about it, or do you need your space?" Delia asked as she gave Ash a box of Kleenexes.

    "I think I can talk about it a bit." Ash replied as he wiped away his tears.

    "Well, no matter if it was a video game boss you couldn't beat, losing a game, or losing a Pokémon battle, I've always loved how you just seem to bounce back from a loss." Delia smiled. "It may hurt in the heat of the moment, but you are a good sport about it, and before long you're ready to go again."

    "It's like Dad always says--even the losses have lessons." Ash agreed, a weak smile forming on his face.

    "Well, what do you think you could learn from a close loss like this?" Delia asked.

    "Sometimes the best offense is a good defense." Ash suggested.

    Brock nodded in agreement. "Having said that, sometimes the loss will happen not because of something you did or did not do, but things beyond your control. Maybe this was one of those."

    "You gave your best, true; but a true Pokémon Master strives to continually hone their skills, losses and all." Misty added.

    "Thanks, you guys..." Ash smiled. "I feel better already."

    ---------

    "Bye, Brenna..." Ash gave Brenna one last hug as Officer Jenny looked on. "Tell the Squad I said hi!"

    [Okay!] Brenna replied before hurrying back to Officer Jenny's side.

    Delia smiled as she admired the medallion Ash had received for reaching the top eight. "Elite Eight---even though you narrowly lost, you sill improved from your first League--and that's something to celebrate!"

    Prof. Oak smiled. "You still gave your all in that match--you've improved a lot from your debut in the Kanto League. As to how to defeat a Blaziken's Blaze Kick--what that attack that took Blaze down was--it may be worth it to travel to Houen and see Blazikens and Kecleons in their native land."

    "I may do that, but first I wanna head home and have a victory pizza party!" Ash smiled.

    He smiled as Blaze landed by him, good as new. [Ah, nothing like a little TLC from Nurse Joy and her crew...] he purred. [You're not mad at me for choking on you, are ya?]

    "Nope--we were just overwhelmed against an attack we had no chance against." Ash replied as he hugged Blaze. "Have a safe flight back, keep getting stronger...and tell Liza and the tribe I said hello!"

    [I will--you know I'm only a whistle away if you need me.] Blaze replied.

    After waving goodbye as Blaze took off into the setting sun, Ash turned to Misty and Brock, who both had medallions of their own. "So? How did you do in your competitions?"

    "I got silver on the Water track..." Misty proudly showed Ash a silver medallion depicting the Pokethlon logo and a wave.

    "...and I got a gold medal for 'The Legend of Daniel the Daring'." Brock showed Ash his own medal. "Pizza sounds wonderful about now..."

    ----------

    That night, the group found Harrison by the nearby river, looking up at the moon and stars. "Got room for a few more?" Ash asked as he sat down on a nearby stump, while Misty sat down by the bank, and Brock looked on from nearby a tree.

    "Sure..." Harrison replied. "You're not mad about losing to me?"

    "Not at all--you are clearly stronger than me." Ash replied. "If I can, I wanna come down to Houen and compete in the League there."

    "Well, you did great yourself." Harrison assured Ash. "Seeing you induce Blaze makes want to find where in Houen you can awaken Mega Evolution, and learn to induce Anubis and Apollo."

    "Speaking of which...Apollo doing okay?" Brock asked.

    "Apollo's going to be just fine." Harrison replied. "He's taken bigger beatings than that before."

    He smiled. "I believe you would do very well against Houen's best, and maybe we can have a rematch."

    "What's Prof. Birch like, for when I do make it down to Houen?" Ash wondered.

    "He's very much a do-er." Harrison replied. "He'd much rather be out in the field doing research than trapped behind a desk. He has a son named Brendan--who is about your age."

    "All the more reason to come--I'd like to meet him!" Ash smiled.

    Harrison smiled back. "Well, I'm gonna get some sleep--you have safe travels yourselves."

    "We will." Ash replied, waving as Harrison departed.

    Gary arrived soon after. "I heard about your crushing defeat from Gramps..." he began. "I'm still proud of you for coming close."

    "Thanks." Ash replied.

    "After our match yesterday, I've been thinking..." Gary mused as he sat on the bank. "When a Magikarp evolves to a Gyarados and a Remoraid evolves into an Octillery, they change form completely. I think it's time I change form too--I wanna be a Pokémon researcher, like Gramps."

    "Really?" Ash was shocked.

    "Yeah...while I can't even begin to say sorry for all those times I was an arrogant hothead, I do regret all those nasty things I said and all those putdowns." Gary explained. "But will you at least forgive me for being a jerk? No more are we rivals...but friends."

    "Yeah--it's always better to forgive and forget." Ash smiled as he embraced Gary. "I can't wait to see what amazing things you discover in your research!"

    "And I can't wait to see what new and exotic places you travel to." Gary grinned.

    "If I find any cool and exotic Pokémon while I'm challenging a League, you'll be the first to know!" Ash smiled back.

    ---------

    "And so the League is over..." Misty smiled as she watched the medal ceremony and the presentation of the winner's cup on her PokeNav the next morning.

    "I'm taking the back way to Pallet through the mountain..." Gary began. "Save me some of that pizza!"

    "I'll tell Dad to save you some sausage." Ash replied before addressing Harrison. "So? Where are you going from here?"

    "I'd be interested in visiting Kanto myself." Harrison replied. "I wonder how Apollo would do in the Indigo League?"

    "I think he'd do great." Ash smiled. "As for us, we're headed back to Viridian City and then on to Pallet Town from there."

    He spotted Ethan and Lyra on the outside of the League complex. "But there's still two more people we have to say goodbye to..."

    To Be Continued...
     
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  13. WavePearl

    Joined:
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    Epilogue: Gotta Catch You Later!

    "Well, this is it..." Ash mused as Ethan and Lyra arrived in the field near the stadium. "But you know we would never leave without saying goodbye."

    "We enjoyed our journey around the region as much as you two." Ethan replied. "Even if we had two different routes and two different goals, it was still nice to see each other when our paths did cross."

    Then, something occurred to Ash. "Kamon...have you guys heard anything of what became of him?"

    "He apologized to Prof. Elm and Officer Jenny for all the trouble he caused, and when he told them of his journey of redemption, Officer Jenny found that a wonderful alternative to the mandated community service he would have otherwise received." Lyra explained. "Last I heard, he was headed to Violet City."

    "But what about you guys?" Misty asked. "Where are you going from here?"

    "Well, the world is certainly full of places to visit, and Mr. Pokémon's tales of the Shinou region have always fascinated us both." Ethan replied. "So we might take a page from Ash's book and go there--just to say we've seen the region, not to compete in anything."

    "I'm intrigued by the idea of Pokémon contests...I wonder what those are like?" Lyra smiled.

    She hugged Ash. "I wish you a hearty congratulations for reaching the top 8, and the best of luck on wherever it is you're going next."

    "Well, first I'm going home and celebrating reaching the Elite 8, and then I'm headed to Houen, Harrison's home region." Ash replied. "Then after I compete in the League there, I just might come find you guys in Shinou."

    Ethan smiled. "Either that, or we run into you."

    Everyone laughed as Ash and Ethan hugged. "It was great to travel with you, and I wish you good luck on your further travels.

    He offered Ash a small card with his and Lyra's contact information on it. "If you ever want to write, call, e-mail, or IM us, here's all our numbers and screennames."

    "Misty...well done on doing well in the Pokethlon." Ethan went on as he hugged Misty.

    "Thanks...I had fun competing in the Pokethlon myself, so I'll see what other regions have one, and go compete there." Misty replied.

    "Brock...keep on playing your music, and telling your stories." Lyra smiled as she hugged Brock. "Whenever I hear an acoustic guitar, I'll think of you."

    "You have a real gift." Ethan agreed. "Maybe you should look into becoming a professional storyteller."

    "I'll do the research, and continue traveling and learning as much material as I can." Brock replied. "Whenever I tell any of the tales I learned here, I'll think of you two."

    After receiving the group's contact information, Ethan turned to Lyra. "Well, I guess it's time to go..."

    "Bye, you guys!" Ash called as he, Misty, and Brock waved goodbye to Ethan and Lyra. "May we meet again soon!"

    THE END

    THE Pokémon ANIME REMIX PROJECT CONTINUES

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    Pokémon SHINE DIAMOND


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