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Pokémon: New Horizons

Discussion in 'Literature Library' started by Flyg0n, May 10, 2016.

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  1. Flyg0n

    Flyg0n PKMN Breeder

    Level 33
    May 2, 2016
    Greetings everyone! I'm new here, but I have been working on a Pokémon fanfic that I really want to share get some feedback on as well. The intent behind this story was that I became dissatisfied with the anime, and I wanted to write my own story. I've always felt that the Pokémon world has so much potential, but we really only see that in the manga. I also have a lot of idea about general mechanics of thing, so I decided I wanted to tell a Pokémon story in my own way.
    This story can also be found on fanfiction.net, here.
    Without further ado, I present New Horizons!

    Chapter 1: The Journey Begins
    Author's Note: Welcome! I have always wanted to write a Pokémon fic, so I finally got around to this. The gosh awfulness of the anime storyline always made me cringe. This story is meant to be my take on the Pokémon world. I draw a lot of inspiration from games, anime and a bit from manga, although I have yet to actually read much of the manga. I did read a little bit, and it is excellent. Everything I ever wanted from the anime. There is a lot that remains the same, but I will take a lot of my own creative liberties with aspects of the Pokémon universe. So please bear this in mind before saying "But according to the anime/manga/games thats not true!". However, if you have any questions or are confused about how things work in my version, feel free to ask. I would love to clarify!
    Also, please be aware this is a WIP. I am writing this as I go, so there may be times when I go back an edit small details from previous chapters. I am trying to avoid this, but I won't make promises.
    Without further ado, let's begin!
    Beep beep beep! The sound of an alarm clock broke Koamaru out of his dream. He grunted slapped the clock until it stopped beeping. Cracking one eye opened, he peered at the clock. 6:30am. Pulling his blanket around himself, he turned over in bed. Five more minutes... mentally admonishing himself, he threw his covers off and sat up. Every time he said five more minutes, he ended up sleeping in. He stood up and stretched, then ambled over to his closet. According to his Poketch Weather App, it would be a bit on the chilly side this morning. A blue t shirt and jeans would do, and he could wear his favorite red leather jacket. After he dressed, he picked up the backpack he'd prepared the night before and strapped his metal baton to his side. He paused at his door to check his wall calendar, crossing off yesterday's date and flipping to next month's page, June. The 3rd had been circled in red. It was only 29 days until his 15th birthday. And 29 days until he could get his trainer's license.
    After he had gotten dressed, slid down the stairs bannister and leaped off as he reached the end. In the living room, he spotted his cousin sleeping on the couch. He'd lived with his cousin for the past six years or so, ever since the orphanage he'd been staying at found out he had a relative. Muffled murmurs emanated from the still on TV, some report delivering the early news. He walked over to his cousin and shook him awake.
    "Hey Blake I'm going out," he said loudly.
    Blake grunted and opened his eyes. "Good morning to you too Koa." Blake sighed and yawned. "You can take Absol with you I guess," he said yawning. "And be careful. Don't forget to be back by 8:30. I need you to do an errand for me."
    Koa rolled his eyes. "Yes yes, I know," he held out his hand expectantly. Blake sat up slightly and produced a great ball from his pocket. "Try not to tire Absol out too fast."
    He snatched the Pokéball from his cousin's hand and dashed towards the door. "Don't worry I got this!" He called over his shoulder. A rush of chilly air tinged with salt greeted him as he opened his front door and stepped outside. Closing the door behind him, he took a deep breath, inhaling the familiar sea air. The buildings of his hometown, Canalave city, surrounded him.
    Taking a determined breath, he took a minute to do a few basic warm-ups. As he did, a flock of Pidgey landed not far away and watched him expectantly. He grinned and waved, then pulled out the pack of seeds he always kept with him, tossing them a few. The birds descended upon them, eagerly pecking them up before flying away. Once he finished stretching, he broke into a jog, heading south. He took a lap around the entire city, following the inside of the city wall. As he did, he took a moment to take in the sights of his home. It wouldn't be long before he had his trainers license and he could start his journey. There was a good chance he might not return to Canalave for a long time. Cozy homes and businesses nestled along the water's edge, overlooking the ocean to the north. The sea formed an inlet that ran straight through the center of town, and two bridges arched over it. As he jogged across the beach, a flock of Wingull squawked and flew inland, over the town. Near the very center of the city, one building stood out from the rest. Unlike the rest of the seaside city, it had two floors. Its gray stone walls stood in contrast to the firm, light colored wooden buildings surrounding it. Arched windows lined its walls, offering a glimpse at what lay inside-rows and rows of books. Even the mere sight of it made Koa's heart soar. The library was his favorite place in the entire city. He'd spent countless hours inside its walls, reading everything he could about his favorite topic. Legendaries.
    Koa crossed over another bridge and followed the street passed his house, continuing west. He left the city through the west gate and followed a worn dirt path into the woods. The sparse woods quickly thickened until the path was nearly invisible, and his surroundings darkened, the faint dawn light barely penetrating the leafy canopy.
    Despite the lack of distinct markers, he jog swiftly through the brush, navigating the mazes of trees with ease. Finally, he stopped in front of one particular tree that was a slightly taller than the others. Roots like vines wrapped around its trunk and spiraled upwards, forming a web-like tangle near the crown of the tree.
    "Let's do this," he declared with a grin. He held up his wrist and switched his Poketch to the Stopwatch App, then pressed the start button. Taking a half step back, he lunged forwards and grabbed hold of the tree, securing his feet against one of the vines. Then he began to climb. He moved swiftly as he could, taking care to secure his hold before moving upwards. No need for a repeat of last month's accident. If he got injured now, he might have to postpone getting his trainer's license. After several moments, and a few moments where he thought he would fall, he pulled himself into a spot in the trunks crown and stopped his stopwatch. 1:47.
    "Woohoo!" He shouted. A startled Hoot Hoot hooted reproachfully at him before flying away. The Trainer's License exam featured a rock wall that he had to climb in 2:00 or under. If he could climb a tree in less time, he was sure to pass that part. Sighing, he leaned back in the tree and closed his eyes, giving his aching limbs a rest. After several minutes, he sat up, then shimmied down the tree. If he wanted to make it home in time to help Blake, he had to leave.
    By the time he reached Canalave's west gate, the sun had risen well above the horizon. He glanced down at his Poketch. 8:10. Not bad.
    As he approached his house, he spotted his cousin standing outside, waiting.
    "How'd the training go?"
    Koa grinned, the memory of his earlier triumph still fresh in his mind. "Great! I beat my time."
    Blake grinned proudly. "Good job. I hope you're not too tired though."
    "Why? What did you need me to do?"
    "I have a few books and some research notes I want to you take to Professor Rowan in Sandgem town." He gestured to his bike, which leaned against the side of the house. "You can borrow my bike to get there."
    "Sick!" Koa exclaimed, pumping his fist in the air. Professor Rowan was a close friend of his cousin, who was a Pokémon researcher. He'd met the Professor a few years back, and immediately grew close to him. It seemed as if Rowan had a never ending wealth of knowledge, and with his help, he'd learned a great deal about Pokémon.
    "Thanks cousin!" He grabbed the bike and practically leaped on.
    "Hey! Watch the bike. They aren't cheap you know," Blake said.
    "Yeah sure. See you later!" He started pedaling hard, dodging people on the streets and he zoomed out of Canalave, taking the east gate. Before long, the massive city of Jubilife loomed before him. He zipped through the uniform streets and out the south side. His surroundings changed, becoming an open grassy path bordered by dense woods on either side. Part of him longed to break off into the woods and explore, to see what kind of Pokémon were around, and even to travel to Lake Verity, but he couldn't leave the path with the bike. As he crested a hill, he paused and wiped sweat from his forehead. Down below, a tall wooden wall surrounded a small group of houses, a Pokémon center and pokemart. Sandgem town. It was one of Sinnoh's smaller towns, outside of Twinleaf town. Although all the houses looked about the same, although he could easily recognize the professor's lab, and house, even from this distance.
    Before he could bike down the hill, something below caught his attention. A male Nidoran burst from the forest, crossing the path and disappearing into the forest on the other side. A moment later a man burst from the woods in pursuit.
    A sharp screech echoed from the forest. Koa started to pedal down the hill. Who was that man? He hadn't gotten a very good look at him. Another shriek echoed through the forest, this time a bit closer. The sound came from his left. He veered to the side of path and sprang off the bike, darting into the woods. As he crashed wildly through the brush, he saw movement in the distance, but between the trees and shrubs blocking his view, all he could make out was indistinct shadows. The sound of human voices carried through the forest towards him.
    "Get it!"
    "What are you doing? ...-escape!"
    Koa squinted and frowned. Something was up. He crept through the woods towards the direction of the commotion. As he drew near, the sound of a battle reached his ears.
    "Come on, take that thing down already!" The voice sounded distinctly male. He slowed his run and crept forwards. Ahead, in a clearing, a rugged, tanned man dressed in outdoor clothing stood, shouting commands to a Mankey. The man wore a dark green vest that matched his pants, and various tools dangled from his belt, including a net, a rope and a baton. The Mankey was struggling to wrestle a worn down looking male Nidoran. Koa clenched his fists and glared. A poacher.
    "YAHHH!" With a loud cry, he sprang from his hiding place and charged at the poacher, barreling into him at full speed. Koa caught him off guard, easily knocking the man down. The Mankey released the Nidoran and turned to its master. Koa quickly scrambled off the poacher, then grabbed his cousin's Pokéball. He pressed the button, releasing Absol. It eyed the poacher and his Pokémon with a disgusted look and growled.
    "Back off, kid. Run back home to your mommy and daddy and stay out of business that doesn't concern you."
    Koa flinched when he mentioned the words 'mommy and daddy', then narrowed his eyes. "It concerns me when you're messing with Pokémon who want to be left alone!"
    "Alright kid, since you want a fight, you got one. Mankey, use Karate Chop!"
    Koa grinned. Without a single word spoken on his part, Absol sidestepped and dodged. The Mankey grunted in surprise as its attack connected with air.
    "Psycho cut!" Koa called. Absol's horn glowed pink and he slashed Mankey, knocking it several feet away. It grunted and lay stunned for a moment. "Absol, Swords Dance!"
    Absol's horn glowed blue, and multiple glowing swords encircled his body. They faded, leaving Absol with a reddish glow around him.
    "Come on you stupid Mankey. Get up and use Low Kick!" The poacher raised his fist in the air, shaking it angrily.
    Mankey growled and crawled to its feet. It bounded towards Absol and swung its leg out.
    "Now! Use Psycho Cut again and aim for his leg," Koa had not even finished speaking before Absol slashed Mankey's leg. Mankey collapsed on the spot, out cold.
    "Unbelievable!" The man cried out. He held out a Pokéball and returned Mankey. "Fine, I'll just find another way to get what I want." He growled. He turned to run away.
    "Absol! Don't let him go!" Absol lunged forwards and landed in front of the man, growling. In a flash, the man whipped out a green spray can, spraying a fine mist at Absol. He howled and staggered back, giving the poacher the chance to flee into the woods. "No!" Koa shouted angrily. Stamping his foot, he hurried to Absol's side. Pulling out his Pokéball, he returned it. The Repel's would surely linger. No point in keeping the poor Absol out. It was far too late to try and chase the poacher, so he turned his attention to the poachers target.
    The Nidoran stood stock still, apparently having watched the entire battle. Koa was surprised it hadn't run. Curious, he sat down a few feet away. He slowly took off his backpack and pulled out an Oran berry. "Here," he rolled the berry towards the Nidoran. It eyed the fruit with an apathetic gaze, before turning its attention back to him. Slowly, Koa held out his palm towards the Nidoran. Its ear twitched and turned, vanishing into the brush. "Aww..." Koa grumbled. He wanted to pursue, but he didn't know these woods nearly as well as the ones back home. Besides, he needed to report the poacher and deliver the package to Professor Rowan.
    After a bit, he had managed to find his way back to the path by following the trails of broken shrubbery. The bike was still where he left it, and so was the package, much to his relief. He picked up his bike and pedaled into town. Reporting the incident would have to wait until he passed through Jubilife, since Sandgem had no formal Police squad, although he did mention the incident to the town guard.
    Finally, he made his way to Professor Rowan's lab. He dropped off the package and then spent the next few hours helping him with various tasks. Before long, the sun had cross its peak and was starting to set. He bid a reluctant farewell to the professor before gathering his things and mounting his bike.
    As he pedaled out of Sandgem, following the path back the way he came, he saw a blur of movement to his left. He slowed and peered into the bushes, but saw nothing else. Shrugging it off as a wild Pokémon, he continued onwards.
    The by the time he reached Jubilife, the sun had set, and the last streaks of dusk were fading. He stopped at the Police station to report the poacher, then left Jubilife. He passed through the gate and onto Route 218, the city lights quickly fading behind him. Route 218 consisted of a grassy dirt path not far from the ocean. It continued for a distance before it changed to a stone bridge that crossed an inlet of ocean water. Various smaller paths branched from the main, weaving through the woods and leading to docks and places where he knew fisherman like to frequent.
    As he neared the bridge, a rustling bush made him pause in his tracks. He took a step towards it curiously. A Mightyena burst from the brush. Is hand darted to his pocket for Absol's Pokéball, but the Mightyena barreled into him, knocking him to the ground. The ball flew from his hand and rolled several feet away.
    "Scram!" He shouted at the Mightyena. He scrambled to his feet and faced it down. It stood only a few feet away-more the close enough to close the distance in a single leap. It seemed to be alone, which was a bit unusual. Still, his cousin had told him how Mightyena would be kicked out of a pack, or leave their pack. "Get outta here!" He shouted, waving his arms.
    The Mightyena responded with a growl. For a split second, he glanced away, trying to see where the Pokéball had landed. Even though Absol was fully capable of leaving of his own free will, it had no way of knowing he was in danger.
    His hand drifted to his baton. He hated to use it, but this Mightyena showed no signs of backing down. And Mightyena without their packs were far more dangerous to humans than a pack. Packs rarely messed with humans, but loners were desperate. And this one appeared to be particularly so.
    A burst of glowing purple needle shot from the wood, crashing into the Mightyena's side. It yelped in surprise and turned to face its attacker. A dark purple blur sprang from under a bush. It flipped twice in midair, then hurtled straight towards the Mightyena, its hind feet extended and glowing white. The Double Kick connected head on, knocking the Mightyena away. It yelped and shook its head. With a final growl, it turned and bounded away.
    Koa let out a long sigh of relief, then looked at his rescuer. A Nidoran stood a few feet away, staring back at him calmly. Its spots looked awfully similar to... He gasped. It was the same Nidoran from earlier, the one he saved from the poacher! "Hey!" He cried out. "Did you follow me all the way out here?"
    The nidoran of course, said nothing. Koa took a tentative step towards it, holding out his hand. "Wanna be friends?" In a flash, it whirled around and darted back into the bushes. His shoulders sagged and he sighed. Oh well. I better get back to Canalave before that Mightyena comes back.
    He probed around the and eventually found Absol's great ball a few feet away. He sent him out. "Keep an eye on things this time, Absol." Absol grunted in understanding as Koa hopped back on his bike and headed home.
    That night, as he lay in bed, he couldn't stop thinking about the Nidoran. It had followed him all the way from the Sandgem Woods. With his Trainers License exam only days away, the possibility of finally having his own Pokémon partner was very real. Maybe Nidoran could be that partner. Tomorrow, after work, he would venture into the woods and try to find Nidoran.
    A week dragged by, but despite his best efforts, he never saw the Nidoran. A few times, he saw its tracks in the dirt, but the trail always went cold. Two more days went by with no sign of it, and he began to lose hope. Maybe Nidoran had gone home. The next day however, as he was heading home after a morning of training, he saw the Nidoran in the woods, eating a Kelpsy berry. Before he could do anything, it finished its meal and took off. The sight gave him an idea, though.
    The next morning, Koa woke up particularly early, taking his cousin's Floatzel with him. He hurried out of the house and headed straight for the western gate. Instead of taking his usual route into the woods, he headed north, towards the ocean. As he walked, he took his time, checking shrubs and around the trees. The Nidoran seemed to prefer Kelpsy berries. Maybe if he picked some for it, he could befriend it. After a few minutes, he found what he was looking for, half hidden in a depression in the earth. He picked a few handful's of the blue, root-like berries, packing them into his backpack.
    After he had collected enough berries, he headed to the spot he'd last seen Nidoran, a small hollow with shrubs all around, and scattered a few of the berries about. Then he sat, and waited. Over an hour dragged by as he waited. He passed time by messing with different apps on his Poketch, but he soon grew bored of that. Just as he began to doubt if the Nidoran would show at all, some bushes at the edge of the hollow rustled. The Nidoran trotted out and wolfed down a berry. It trotted to another and ate that as well. Slowly, Koa withdrew a berry from his bag and tossed it to the Nidoran. The berry landed a few feet away from Koa, and the Nidoran eyed him before slowly eating the berry.
    "Hey. I just wanna be friends," he said, keeping his voice low. For a moment, he thought the Nidoran would run away again. Then it trotted over to him and nuzzled his leg. A wide smile spread across Koa's face. "Yes!" He shouted. He gently scooped the Nidoran into his lap, stroking its head gently. "Well partner? What should I call you?" He scratched behind the Nidoran's ear thoughtfully as it nestled deeper into his lap. "How about king?" The Nidoran chittered happily. "King it is then! We're gonna explore the world together!"
    The days until his trainers exam flew by. He spent every spare hour he could with King. Although he couldn't formerly participate in any battles, he still worked on training and strengthening his bond with him. He tested his strength, endurance and battle skills. King apparently was already fairly strong, and knew how to use Peck, Double Kick, Poison Sting and Leer. King took to following him around town, and even home. Blake was surprised, but pleased as well. Soon, the day of the trainer's license exam arrived.
    Koa awoke especially early, packing his backpack carefully and checking it twice. The closest exam center was located in Jubilife, which although was the closest city, still took a far amount of time to get to. Thankfully, his cousin had offered to take him there on Basil, his Gogoat. His cousin dropped him off in front of a massive square building lined with thick glass windows. Bold letters above two sets of double sliding doors spelled 'DTL' and in smaller letters beneath it, 'Department of Trainer Licensing'.
    "Good luck, Koa!" Blake said.
    "Luck is for losers! I got this." Koa said, smirking.
    "That's why I offered it."
    Koa's smirk disappeared and he shot his cousin a scathing glare. He knelt beside King, who had accompanied them for the trip. "I'll be back soon, King. And then we can go on our journey! Oh, and give Blake a hard time for me ok?"
    King gave a happy chirp. Then Koa turned and hurried inside. Several people milled about and small clusters, most around the ages of 15-18. Some were chatting, while others were showing off Pokémon they had befriended. He brushed by them, heading straight for the registration counter. A young lady with straight black hair, pale skin and a serious face sat behind the counter, staring blankly ahead.
    "I'd like to register for the Trainer's License exam," he said.
    The lady looked at him, then down at her computer. "Name?"
    "Koamaru Averon."
    "15," he replied. It felt good to finally say it.
    She took another look at him then typed in some more information, murmuring to herself as she did. "Eyes, brown... skin, light. Hair dark navy." She looked back up at him.
    "Five foot six."
    "Canalave City."
    She finished typing, then looked up at him. "You're all set." She slid a slip of paper over the counter towards him. "Here's your exam pass. The first part will begin in five minutes. Please wait in the lobby."
    Koa stood off to the side, looking at his prospective competition. Although he wasn't directly competing against them, any one of them might be the next gym leader or perhaps even champion, further along the line. One boy stood out from the rest. He wore a dark purple medieval looking suit with an elegant red cape. He had neatly trimmed black hair, and dark green eyes. What kind of outfit is that? He thought. He let his attention drift as he mentally prepared himself for what lay ahead. The exam consisted of three parts. A test of physical prowess, tests of knowledge about the Pokémon world, and finally, a simulated battle. The physical test and knowledge test he knew well, but he was slightly less certain about the battle test. You never knew what Pokémon you would get, or what opponent you would face. On the bright said, they weren't required to win, merely demonstrate their skills.
    A door beside the registration desk slid open and a man with graying brown hair and a clipboard stepped out. "My name is Fyren, and I'll be your head instructor today. The Trainer's License Exam will begin now. Please follow me."
    Koa hurried after him, the rest of the potential trainers following suit. They were led first into a large gym area with a running course, a rock wall and hurdles. One by one, each trainer ran a lap around the course, jumped the hurdles and climbed the rock wall as fast as they could. After each trainer completed the course, the man wrote something on his clipboard and motioned for the next trainer. Soon, it was Koa's turn. He sprinted through the course with ease, scaling the wall in well under two minutes. The caped boy went after him, and practically seemed to glide up the rock wall. A twinge of jealously flowed through him. A few of the other trainers struggled, either knocking down hurdles or falling off the wall.
    After everyone had completed the physical, they followed Fyren to a large classroom. Everyone took a seat and he handed out test papers. The test consisted of a mix of questions, ranging from Pokémon types, to species names, and item knowledge. Koa flew through the quiz, then handed back his test. He noted that the caped trainer from earlier handed in his test only a minute later.
    Finally, the battle test came. They were led into a huge room with three battlefields outlined in the dirt. "Three of you will be tested at once. You will each receive a random Pokémon, as will the instructors. You will battle against the instructor until one of your Pokémon faints. Remember, this is a test of battle competency."
    Fyren divided everyone into three lines. Koa ended up second in a group of four, while the caped boy ended up in a different group. He soon forgot about him however, as the battles begun. The girl in front of him, who had teal curls and yellow blouse and skirt, received a Vaporeon, and the instructor an Ekans. The girl won without too much difficulty, although Koa noted that the instructor was fairly skilled. As the instructor called his name, he stepped onto the battlefield. There was faint flicker as the invisible barrier around the field was turned on. An attendant selected a Pokéball from a case and handed it to him, the handed one to the instructor.
    The instructor sent out his Pokémon first. A dark greenish blue eel Pokémon with a light underbelly and two flowing arms hovered, ready to attack. It took a moment before he recognized it as an Eelektross.
    He tossed out his own Pokéball, revealing a Hippopotas. "Aw yeah, I got this! We're gonna own this Hippopotas!" Hippopotas gave an enthusiastic grunt. The attendant gave him a card with Hippopotas's moveset. Earthquake, Sand Attack, Crunch, Sand tomb. Perfect. Eelektross was electric type, that much he remembered. This would be a cinch.
    "Battle, begin!" The announcer called.
    "Hippopotas, use sand attack!" Hippopotas jumped forwards and shot a stream of sand from its mouth. It struck Eelektross full on, causing it to stumble back and hiss.
    "Crush claw," the instructor called.
    "Wait til its close and use sand attack again!"
    Eelektross's claws glowed bright blue and it sprang into the air, arcing straight down. A moment later, Hippopotas launched sand attack. Eelektross reeled back, Crush Claw missing entirely. Eelektross backed away a short distance.
    "Let's finish this! Earthquake!" Hippopotas eyes glowed blue, and waves of energy rippled through the earth, straight towards Eelektross. The instructor said nothing, and gave no commands. The waves reached Eelektross and passed right under, fading away. Eelektross didn't even flinch.
    "What!?" Koa shouted. Hippopotas gave a matching cry of shock.
    "Now Eelektross, Grass Knot!" Eelektross's eyes glowed green, and tendrils of grass sprouted from the earth, yanking Hippopotas feet from underneath him and knocking him onto his side.
    "No, get up!" Koa cried. Hippopotas squirmed and struggled.
    "Aqua Tail!"
    "Dodge!" Koa shouted in panic.
    Eelektross sprang high into the air, a vortex of water swirling around its tail. Then it brought its tail down on top of Hippopotas. A burst of energy kicked up a cloud of dust. It settled moments later, showing Hippopotas fainted. Eelektross raised its claws in the air and growled happily.
    Koa's shoulders drooped and he hung his head. He returned Hippopotas to his Pokéball, thanked him, then returned the ball to the attendant. The instructor walked over to him. "Never assume, young man. Eelektross has a special ability known as Levitate, which causes ground attacks like Earthquake to miss. And although type advantages can win a battle, don't forget that a skilled trainer must also account for his partners weaknesses."
    Koa nodded. "Thanks," he mumbled. He turned away and joined the rest of the trainers who completed their battle. To his disappointment, he'd missed the caped boy's battle. He couldn't find the heart to get interested in the other battles. What if they failed him on his exam? He'd have to wait another month to try again. Just the thought made him anxious.
    After all the battles had been completed, the instructor led them to a large assembly hall with a seating area and a stage. Koa sat with the other trainers in the reserved seating row, his hands clenched into tight fists. This would be it. They would call up the trainers who had made it, and present them with their license. Fyren stepped onto the stage, holding his clipboard. "I will now announce the trainers who will receive their license."
    "Edgar Fennel." A stocky blond boy bounded onto the stage. Fyren handed him a card, then posed for a picture before leaving the stage.
    One by one, more trainers were called out.
    "Ryuu." The caped boy strode confidently on stage and received his license. A moment later, he left the stage and hurried out of the hall. With each name that wasn't his, Koa became more worried, jittering his leg and tapping his fingers.
    "Koamaru Averon."
    Koa literally leaped out of his chair, barely holding back his exclamation. He ran onto stage, grinning widely as Fyren handed him his license. Finally. He could be a proper trainer. As soon as he was able, he raced out of the building. As soon as he stepped outside, he jumped in the air and shouted. He spotted Blake a few feet away, smiling proudly. King bounded over to him and leaped into his arms. "I did it King! You and I can be partners now!"
    "Nice work, Cuz. While you were busy, I picked up a gift," Blake said. He handed him a Pokéball.
    Koa set King down and took it. "Whoa sweet! My first Pokéball!" He turned to King. "This is going to be your Pokéball now." He placed it on the ground in front of him. King looked up at him, then tapped the Pokéball with his horn. A glowing light encapsulated him, and the Pokéball pulsed with light once, indicating a success.
    Finally. He could explore the world and with any luck, find untold treasures and see the legendaries.
    Note: At the end of every chapter, I plan to include a summary of the Pokémon Koa has befriended, and their moves. I may also start doing this at the beginning of chapters as well.
    King (Male Nidoran)-Peck, Leer, Double Kick, Poison Sting
    I hope everyone enjoyed this! Please review, I love hearing your guys thoughts and opinions. Feel free to write a long review too if you want! Constructive criticism is always welcomed. I'll add the next couple chapters very soon, since I already have a few posted online.
    Chapter 2: Discovery

    Chapter 2 is up! I think this should be enjoyable. There's some action and such, and I definitely prefer this chapter over chapter 1, just because I liked writing it.
    King (Male Nidoran)-Peck, Leer, Double Kick, Poison Sting
    Koamaru glanced around his room one last time, hoping he hadn't forgotten anything. He'd packed his black travel backpack with everything he thought he might need. Two extra pairs of clothes, a set of pajamas, his baton, and some various medicines and berries. With some struggle, he'd managed to fit in a sleeping bag as well. Lastly, he had tucked away several pokeballs in the pockets. If anything, he could always buy something from a store. He had plenty of money with him. "Guess that's it," he murmured. Just one thing left to do. Booting up his computer, he logged into his favorite website, , and skimmed the stories. The site was a collection of sightings of legendary Pokémon. Most he'd read before, and even more were too far away-some as far as Sunnyshore, and others were located on different regions entirely. One, however, caught his eye. Regirock at Bronze Cave! He clicked on the report and read it. Supposedly, a hiker had seen a Regirock briefly at Bronze Cave. This could be his chance! Bronze cave was only a few miles south of Canalave city, on the Elhein Mountains.
    "Come on, King! We're gonna find Regirock!" Nidoran hopped off his bed and onto his shoulder, causing him to stumble slightly. He jogged downstairs, where Blake waited for him by the door.
    "Still can't believe you're leaving already. Try not to do anything too stupid out there," Blake said. He ruffled Koa's hair, and Koa jerked away.
    "Ugh, stop that." He smoothed his hair back.
    "So what are your plans?"
    "I'm going to try to find every legendary. Maybe challenge the league."
    "Make sure you stop in Jubilife first."
    "Jubilife? For what?"
    "I made an appointment to have you outfitted with protective gear. Not every town is as safe as Canalave. Especially the smaller ones. Wild Pokémon are not to be trifled with you know."
    Koa rolled his eyes. "As long as I have my King with me, I'll be fine! That's why people first starting taming Pokémon. So they didn't have to fear wild Pokémon."
    Blake scowled. "Just because you read a few books in the library doesn't make you an expert. A Scyther could seperate your head from your body in a flash, or a Beedrill could puts its spear through your chest. This isn't some TV show where a Charmander can roast you alive and you shake it off!"
    Koa was about to make a snappy reply, but he held it back. He remembered a time when his cousin had come back from an extended research mission. He'd seemed so quiet and withdrawn, and angry too. For a week, he'd done nothing but train, and then he had taken a day trip to Eterna City. When Koa asked why, he only said that it was a funeral for a friend who'd died. It hadn't taken him long to find a news article about a Pokémon researcher killed by a wild Nosepass.
    "Okay, fine. I'll get it," he grumbled. "When's the appointment?"
    "Tomorrow morning. 7:30 sharp. The guy is a friend of mine, so you get to go in early. The business is called Aaron Outfitters."
    "Ok. Thanks Blake." He hugged his cousin. Koa started towards the door.
    "Good luck," Blake said with a chuckle. Koa punched him in the shoulder playfully, then hurried out the door. Traveling would take quite a bit longer without the use of Blake's bike, but that was fine by him. It was too easy to miss things on a bike. Blake's appointment presented a problem however. If he left for Jubilife now, he'd have plenty of time, but lose any chance of seeing Regirock. "What do you think, King?" He turned towards King, who had hopped off his shoulder to walk alongside him. "I'll go to the cave first, then Jubilife. The Pokémon around here aren't that bad anyway." With his mind made up, he set out for Bronze cave.
    "Sorry, no one is allowed past this point without a Trainers License and at least three gym badges." Two guards stood outside the main cave entrance, blocking the path.
    "What?" Koa cried out. This was his first time hiking all the way down to Bronze cave, but he'd just assumed he could go right in. Although granted, he'd never been very far from Canalave. The farthest he'd gone was Twinleaf, to visit his cousin's friend.
    "Why not?" He demanded.
    The guard looked down at him and frowned. "Caves are dangerous. They're filled with wild Pokémon who viciously defend their territory. You should know that."
    Koa grit his teeth. He did know that, but he thought that the frontier lands around Canalave were safer. Still, how bad could the caves really be? He eyed the guards. They stared back at him with matching frowns. Not the type who would give in with convincing. "Alright. Guess I'll have to come back later," he said, putting on his sincerest disappointed face. He turned and walked back down the path. As soon as he walked around a bend, out of sight, he crouched down.
    "Ok King. We gotta get in there. Regirock might be in there. Do you know if there are other entrances. King cocked his head and flicked his ears. For a moment, he stood stock still. Then he chittered and started to trot away. Koa grinned and stood up, following him.
    King led him through a patch of trees and up a steep hill until they emerged in front of a cliff face with a small opening. He started into the cave, but he had only gone a few feet in when he realized a cave in blocked the path forwards. "Hmmm... King, try to-" he was cut off as King leaped forwards and unleashed Double Kick on the wall. There was a shower of pebbles and a dust explosion. Once it cleared he saw King had created a sizeable hole near the top. "Nice!"
    He crawled up to the hole and scrambled through, landing on the other side with a thump. King squeezed through after him, landing on his head. After dusting himself off, he took a look around. A rocky tunnel stretched ran his hands over the wall. Tey felt as if an Onix tunneled them. "Alright King, lets find Regirock." He pulled out his camera, and started walking.
    The cave wound in a series of tunnels and caverns and ledges and slopes. He took care to mark which routes he'd gone down, so he wouldn't get lost. For almost an hour, he explored with no trouble. As he walked, he kept his flashlight trained on the area in front of him. He saw a few wild Pokémon, although only from a distance. He'd just emerged into another cavern and King started towards the wall to mark it, when the ground shook. A hollow clunk sounded just above is head. Koa jerked and looked up to see a white object whizzing through the air towards the center of the cavern. He followed the trajectory and saw a Marowak standing in the middle of the cavern, holding a long white bone.
    "King, attack!"
    King jumped forwards, his eyes glowing red as he leered at his opponent. Marowak flinched and took a step back. Then it shook its head and charged. King maintained Leer for another few seconds, then launched Poison Sting. Marowak twirled its club, deflecting most of them, although many still stuck. It jumped forwards, raising its bone in the air and bringing it down on King. King grunted in pain and slid back. Marowak blinked and swayed on its feet. Its skin took on a purplish color, and its body trembled.
    Koa recalled Kings special ability-Poison Point. If a Pokémon made contact with Nidoran, they could be poisoned. "Okay, finish it off with Double Kick!" King kicked the Marowak in the face, sending it flying back into a stalactite. It slumped to the ground, defeated. "Nice work!" Koa cheered. He placed a Pecha berry on the ground near it, then glanced around the room again. Choosing a random tunnel, he started down it, when King froze, his ears twitching. "What is it?" King trotted off to the side of the cavern, disappearing behind a dip in the ground. Koa followed and saw King standing in front of a Zubat laying on the ground. It was clearly injured and too weak to even fly.
    Koa bit his lip uncertainly. Sure, it was only natural. Pokémon would prey on other Pokémon, and this was just part of life. But he felt bad for the poor Zubat. He crouched beside it and took out a Sitrus berry, squeezing the juices into its mouth. As he worked, he murmured softly to it to keep it calm. Then he pulled out a few small bandages, and bandaged the scrapes and cuts on its body. After a few minutes, the Zubat started to perk up, and screeched happily. It flapped in sloppy circles then landed on his lap. "Time to go back to the wild, Zubat."
    Zubat remained stubbornly perched in his picked up the small Pokémon and set it on the ground. "Scram," he said gently. He started to walk away, but the Zubat flapped noisily after him. If it kept up that noise, he'd never be able to sneak up on Regirock, and every wild Pokémon in the cave would know where he was. "Shoo!" He protested. He started to walk away quicker. Zubat continued to follow, and Koa sighed. "If you want to come so bad, then you'll have to stay in a Pokéball." He sighed. Although he hadn't planned what Pokémon he wanted to train, Zubat wasn't on the list. As a whole, Zubat tended to be flighty, and unpredictable, not to mention vulnerable. Still, it seemed so eager. He fished a Pokéball out of his backpack and captured the Zubat, returning the ball to his backpack.
    Koa turned to King. "Let's go find Regirock."
    A heavy rumbling noise drew his attention to a ledge on the far side of the room. He shined his flashlight towards it just in time to see a large shadow move away. Could that have been Regirock?
    Sprinting in the direction he'd last seen it, he shouted over his shoulder, "Come on King!" King scrambled after him and began scaling the wall up to the ledge. A few moments later, he'd dragged himself onto the ledge. He started forwards, but his foot hit air where he expected solid ground. With a cry of shock, he tumbled forwards, rolling down a steep slope. The rough ground tore his and jacket scraped his limbs. A few moments later, he smacked into something hard, coming to a stop. He let out a groan of pain, and lay still for a few moments, then slowly sat up. King nuzzled him in worry. "Ughh... I'm okay King. I think." His entire body ached all over, but it didn't feel like anything had broken. He turned to see what he hit. His tumble had taken him just inside a small cavern. A round green boulder had stopped his fall. Green boulder? The caves walls were a brown color. Which meant...
    "King get back!" Koa scrambled to his feet and bolted away from the boulder. King, however, stood his ground and growled at the boulder. The ground rumbled and a set of arms and legs unfolded from the boulder. Slowly, it turned to face them, revealing a large, angry Golem. "King get back-"
    Golem tucked into a ball and rolled at King, his body moving so fast it became a blur. It slammed King hard, sending him flying into a wall. King squeaked in pain and lay still.
    "King!" Koa darted towards his fallen partner. A golden orb of energy appeared in Golem's mouth and it fired it towards King. At the last moment, Koa grabbed King and rolled out of the way as the orb exploded behind them. He cradled King close as he stared down Golem. He needed to get out of here, fast. Golem was too strong for King, he didn't need a Level Checker App to tell him that. A few yards away, to his left, was another entrance. If he could distract Golem, he could escape through there. Unless Golem followed him.
    Golem roared angrily, causing the room to shake. Koa grabbed a rock from the ground and hurled it past Golem. For a brief second, it glanced away. Koa bolted, sprinting by Golem and through the tunnel. He kept running, trying his best to remember the paths he took. For almost ten minutes straight, he kept running, until he was sure Golem was't following. Finally he stopped in another cavern, breathing heavily. Kneeling down, he set King on the ground carefully and pulled a slightly squashed Oran berry out of his bag. Drop by drop, he carefully squeezed the juice into King's mouth. A few moments later, the Nidoran's eyes opened. Koa smiled in relief, then gave him another Oran berry. Within a few minutes, he was looking completely restored. Koa checked his HP App and scanned King. A few seconds later, the results popped up on the screen. Full HP. "Phew." he murmured. King chirped and nuzzled him.
    Koa stood up and dusted himself off as best he could. "Well, might as well look around." The cavern was large, even bigger than the first one he encountered. Tragically there was no sign of Regirock, although he'd come to suspect what he'd seen earlier had simply been another Pokémon. He wandered slowly through the room, carefully checking the floors and ceiling for tracks or signs of Regirock. He'd made almost halfway around the cavern when something caught his eye. Poking from behind a stalagmite, he spotted something white. He crept over to it and peered around the stalagmite. A crumbled set of human bones lay scattered on the ground, gnawed clean. Koa took a step back and shuddered, looking away. Likely an errant researcher or hiker who had wandered too far. What does that make you? He thought. A chill traveled down his spine and he forced his gaze away from the skeleton. There was no evidence of a Pokémon skeleton, so he could had simply come in alone and been overwhelmed. Something else quickly drew his attention away from thoughts of being killed by wild Pokémon.
    An unusual stone object lay several feet away, a much lighter and grayer color than the cave. It resembled a piece of a large jaw bone, almost twice as big as his head. "It's a Jaw Fossil, King!" He picked it up and stroked it. It felt heavy, although still lighter than he expected based on its size. He'd found plenty of fossil's before, while out with his cousin or when he snuck into caves on his own. But he'd never found any complete enough for regeneration. King clawed his way onto Koa's shoulder and peered down at it, chittering. "I thought these were found in Kalos, not Sinnoh." He murmured. If he could get to Oreburgh city Museum, he could revive the fossil into a Tyrunt. "Sweet!" He shouted. His voice echoed through the cavern, bouncing back to him. As it the noise faded, he heard scratching and fluttering above him. A vague sense of dread filled him as he shined his flashlight at the ceiling. An entire colony of Zubat and Golbat hung from the ceiling. A nest. Their wide open eyes shined in his flashlight beam as they glared down at him. He took a step back and stumbled, sending his beam wildly across the ceiling. A loud screeching filled the room and the sound of a hundreds of wingbeats echoed as they left the perches, swarming the cavern.
    They darted down towards him, their deafening cries filling the room. One whizzed by him and scratched his jacket, tearing straight through the leather and cutting his skin. Another dived at King, scratching the Nidorans hide and drawing blood. At the sight of the blood, Koa started to panic. The Golbat weren't attacking with techniques. They were attacking to kill.
    King blasted a Poison Sting at the swarm, but for everyone it knocked down, two more seemed to fill their place. Koa grabbed his baton from his side and began to swing it, hitting any that came to close. In less than a minute, King had exhausted all his energy for Poison Sting. Double Kick did little good, and missed more than it hit. And the longer the fight continued, the less and less King was able to dodge. Yet another slipped through their defense, and sank its jaws into King. King screamed, and Koa smashed it in the head with his baton, knocking it off. A group struck him in the side, knocking him down. Koa cried out in pain as they scratched and bit him.
    King raced to his side, lunging and lashing out wildly as it struggled to defend him. Koa curled into a ball, trying to protect his head. "Run King!" He screamed. King ignored his orders and continued to attack. A horrible thought wormed its way into Koa's mind. Was this the end? Would he die here, with no one to discover what happened to him?
    King's eyes began to glow purple, and a blast of psychic energy knocked them away. The ones on Koa released him and fluttered away. Many started to flap in confused circles. Again and again, King used Confusion, until it had forced most of the swarm away. Koa seized the opportunity and returned King to his Pokéball, then ran. He weaved through the tunnels, gasping for breath. Behind him, he could still hear the wingbeats of the colony. They weren't giving up as easy as the Golem had. After a few minutes, he spotted a tunnel that was lighter than the others. An exit, perhaps? He raced down the tunnel. As he turned a corner, the light almost blinded him. He kept going, emerging from the cave and onto a steep forested slope. Half-sliding, half running, he hurtled down the hill. At the base, he crossed a thin dirt path and collapsed at the edge of the woods on the other side. His breaths came in ragged heaves, and his vision swam. He could feel his heart hammering rapidly in his chest, and he felt sick. Wearily, he peered across the road. The Zubat colony was gone.
    He released King from his Pokéball. Koa could feel his tiny rapid heartbeat and his wearied breaths. Small scratches covered his body, although the most concerning was a set of deep puncture wounds caused by the Golbat's fangs. King needed a Pokémon center. Wild Zubat and Golbat could carry dangerous diseases, plus he wanted to get the scratches looked at. "Don't worry King, I'll get you out of here. And thank for using Confusion to get us out. Without you I'd be a goner." Raising his head, he looked around.
    To the south, just past the trees, he could see Lake Verity. A sigh of relief escaped him. If that was lake Verity, then that meant there was a Pokémon outpost not far. He glanced at the sky. It was evening. He needed to get to get to the outpost quickly. If he got caught when it was dark out, with King in this shape, it would be deadly. He stuffed the fossil into his backpack and cradled King in his arms. After taking a moment to orient himself, he set off at a steady jog, trying to ignore his own pain.
    The sun had started to set by the time he reached the out post. Like all outposts, it consisted of a sturdy wall to keep out Pokémon, and guards stationed at the rim to discourage flying Pokémon. Inside was a small base for the guards, an couple of houses and most importantly, a Pokémon center. He raced through the outpost and burst into the Pokémon center.
    "Nurse!"" He shouted. "My Nidoran needs help!" The nurse, an older woman with short cropped gray hair hurried towards him. Her Chansey trotted beside her, pushing a gurney, and she carefully took King from him, setting him on Chansey's cart. "What happened to him?"
    "We were attacked by a colony of Zubat and Golbat. And they bit him too."
    The nurse nodded. "Wait here." she pushed King through a set of double doors. Koa started to follow, the but the doors locked behind the nurse. With a sigh, he picked a chair near the doors and sat down. The longer he waited, the more worried he grew. And with the worry came guilt. The guards at the entrance had warned him, but he utterly ignored them. And now King suffered because of it. Well, he wouldn't let it happen again. First, he would get the armor from Jubilife like Blake suggested. Then he would go to Oreburgh and challenge the gym. And while he was in Oreburgh, he could see if they could revive the fossil at the museum. After that he would challenge every gym he could. He would make sure his Pokémon were the strongest they could possibly be. This would never happen again.
    Sometime later, the nurse came out. Chansey followed close behind, pushing a cart with King on it. His eyes were wide open and he seemed much perkier. "Your Nidoran will be fine. I gave him medicine so he won't get sick, and he should heal fine. Let him rest overnight, and try to avoid battles for a day or two."
    King chirped happily and hopped into his arms.
    "Thank you nurse..." He glanced at her nametag. "Nerene."
    She gave a nod in response.
    "Do you think you could give this Zubat I caught a checkup?" He handed her Zubat's Pokéball.
    "Sure!" She took the Pokéball from him and walked over to a machine behind the counter. Placing it into a slot, she pressed a few buttons. A glowing light pulsed around the ball, then faded. Nerene removed the ball and handed it to him. "He looks to be in fine condition."
    Koa took the Pokéball back. "Thank you!" He put the Pokéball away.
    "It looks like you were injured too. Didn't you see the guard stationed outside the entrance."
    Koa said nothing. "Get over here. No sense in healing your Pokémon and letting you catch all manners of diseases." Nerene lead him to a side room and helped bandage his deeper wounds, and had Chansey use her abilities to heal the less serious ones. She was none too gentle, and Koa started to wish he'd simply suffered through the pain. "Alright, there." Nerene grumbled. "Now stay out of dangerous caves."
    Koa mumbled a thanks and headed out of the Pokémon center. It was too late to be out on the road, so he got a room at an inn and stayed the night.
    The next morning, he awoke early. He had a lot of traveling to do, and he wanted to reach Oreburgh before the day ended, and revive his fossil. Thankfully, Jubilife was only a short walk east, and reached there by 7:20. After wandering the city a bit, he found the store nestled between two larger ones. Block letters above the store read "Aaron Outfitters: Protective gear for every trainer." He squeezed down an alley and to the back of the building, and knocked on the door.
    Footsteps sounded from inside, and the door swung open. A hulking, muscular man with silver hair stepped out, towering over him. He wore hard metal armor with spikes running down the back, and he almost resembled some mix between a Lairon and Aggron. Under his right arm he carried a pointed metal helmet. The man grunted and nodded inside before turning away. Koa looked a King, then shrugged and followed. He stepped into what appeared to be some kind of workshop. Tools lay scattered around on tables, along with pieces of metal, cloth and other materials he couldn't identity.
    "Blake said you were coming." The man grunted. His voice was gravelly, and he spoke slowly and deliberately."Sit down." He nodded his head towards a beaten and dented wooden chair. Koa took a seat somewhat uncertainly. The man disappeared into a side room, then returned a few moments later carrying a massive box. He set it on a table. "This should fit you."
    Koa eyed it. The box seemed awfully big, and heavy. If it was anything like this man's armor, he wouldn't even be able to move. "I don't have all day. Open the box."
    With a sigh, Koa opened up a the box. A set of armor lay inside, but it was nothing like he expected. Inside the box lay a thin black undershirt with plating on the chest. He lifted it up experimentally and found it extremely light. Underneath was a white and red jacket that reminded him of Zangoose fur. Hardened bracers adorned the sleeves, and he appeared to be made out of some sort of tightly woven fiber.
    "Lightweight. Breathable."
    "Sick!" Koa said. "Do I uh-"
    "Blake paid." The man replied. Koa nodded, then took the equipment. After packing the suit carefully into his backpack, he said goodbye and left. The whole ordeal only took a half an hour, which meant he had plenty of time to head for Oreburgh and revive his fossil. Getting to Oreburgh wasn't hard. He left Jubilife through the east gate, taking route 203 towards the Coronet mountains. A smaller series of mountains extended from the Coronet Mountain range, creating natural wall on three sides of Oreburgh city. They were far smaller than Mt. Coronet itself, which loomed to the north, its peak far above even the clouds.
    Halfway across Route 203, which was no more than a wide dirt path through a gentle forest, Koa took a moment to stare at Mt. Coronet. He wanted to go there, one day. Explore its depths. No telling what kinds of treasure lay inside, not to mention the legends he'd read about in the Canalave library. How Arceus had formed Sinnoh, and supposedly, at the highest peak of Mt. Coronet, lay the Spear Pillar. The place where Palkia and Dialga, the gods of space and time, had been created. A place no one had seen in years. The only way to the pillar was through the caves, but the caves were a like a maze. The deepest depths were filled with countless wild Pokémon, who could easily kill a Pokémon and his trainer. Even the gym leaders didn't venture too far into its depths. Many a trainer had tried to fly to the pillar, only to be met with unpredictable winds and freezing temperatures. The ultimate test. "We'll make it there one day, King," he pointed towards the Mt Coronet. "Maybe we'll even see Dialga and Palkia." King chirped.
    Finally, Koa dragged his gaze away from the mountain and continued walking. Finally, as he drew closer to the mountain range, the ground sloped and Koa could see the Oreburgh gate not far ahead. A wide tunnel cut through the mountain. He knew that just on the other side was Oreburgh City. Famous for its mines and museums. He'd gone there with Blake on a few occasions.
    A man wearing a police uniform stood outside Oreburgh gate, leaning on the cave wall. As Koa approached, he looked up. "Hey! You there!"
    Koa gave him a questioning look. "You see any shady characters around?"
    "Shady characters?"
    "Suspicious people. There's been some crimes committed lately In Jubilife and Oreburgh, and we're trying to track down the criminals responsible."
    Koa shrugged and shook his head. "No... sorry." He'd only see a few other people out walking about, and none looked very suspicious. Although he supposed any criminal worth his salt wouldn't be very good if he looked suspicious.
    The officer sighed and waved him on. "Alright, keep going."
    Koa took a step, then the officer held out his hand. "Hang on. Lemme see your Trainer's License."
    Koa handed it over. The officer looked it over before handing it back. "Alright, you're good." With sigh, Koa kept walking. The Oreburgh Gate path was a bit long, but turned out to be an uneventful walk. Eventually, the light at the end grew larger and brighter, until he emerged into Oreburgh City.
    Oreburgh city was a sturdy mining town nestled between mountains. To the south lay its mines, where the Gym Leader Roark worked, and to the east lay the bulk of the Coronet Mountain Range. He hurried the town as fast as he could run, not bothering to take in the sights. A massive steel and glass building took up the northeast portion of the city-The Oreburgh Mining Museum He burst through the door and skidded to stop. Roark himself stood just inside, talking with a woman in a lab coat. After a few more seconds, the woman nodded and walked away. Roark turned and noticed him.
    "Roark!" Koa blurted. He hurried over to the gym leader.
    "Hmm. Koamaru, isn't it? I remember your cousin, Blake. You live in my father's city, right?"
    Koa nodded. "What brings you out here? On another trip with Blake?"
    "Nope!" Koa said proudly. "I got my trainer's license. And I found a Jaw fossil!"
    Roark raised his eyebrows. "Incredible! A Jaw Fossil? Tyrunt's were native to kalos, so it's very unusual to see one here in Sinnoh. May I see it?"
    Koa handed the fossil over. Roark turned it over slowly in his hands, nodding. "An excellent specimen indeed. More than good enough for revival."
    "Sick! Can you do it now?"
    Roark handed the fossil back and shook his head. "I'd love to, since I've never had the pleasure of seeing a Tyrunt, but I won't. Tyrunt are very tough Pokémon, and hard to train. Unless you have at least two gym badges, then you'll have to wait."
    Koa gritted his teeth, suppressing his frustration and disappointment. He'd come all this way for nothing? No. There was something...
    "Fine. I challenge you to a battle!"
    Roark chuckled. "Very well, if that's what you want. But I watrn you, I won't be going easy on you. Meet me at the gym. And I suggest you prepare well." Roark gave a brief wave before striding out of the museum.
    "We're gonna defeat him, King. Then we'll beat another gym. Whatever it takes to get Tyrunt." He glanced down at King. Although he'd made a full recovery from yesterday's injuries, the memory was still fresh on Koa's head. How close they'd come to dying. If he didn't get Tyrunt, then all that would have been for nothing. Well that, and King learned Confusion. He returned King to his Pokéball. Clenching his fists, he stomped out of the museum.
    Without waiting, he walked straight to the gym and burst through the doors. The inside of the gym looked as if it had been carved from rock. The walls and ceiling looked like a cave, a few gym members milled about. The gym leaders arena was located at the rear of the cave, on a raised platform of rock. Roark stood at the base, beside a steep slope, waiting for him.
    "Alright let's battle!" Koa shouted as he approached.
    "Are you certain you're prepared? I can wait as long as-"
    "I'm ready. I want this badge."
    Roark gave a nod and led him up the slope, effortlessly scaling the steep slope. Koa jogged after him. He slipped once, but regained his balance and continued. Finally, he stood at the top. A large arena stretched out before him, Roark at the far man in miners clothing stood to the side. The referee, Koa guessed. The miner spoke up. "This will be a one on one match! Koamaru Averon of Canalave vs Roark of Oreburgh! The challenger is free to use up to six Pokémon, the defender will use three. Substitutions are allowed. Please choose your Pokémon."
    "Let's show them how it's done! Go King!" Koa sent out King, out growled in challenge.
    "Boulder, show them how tough we are." Roark tossed out a Pokéball, sending out a Geodude.
    The referee stepped over to button on the wall and pressed it. A glowing barrier flashed around the open side of the arena then faded. Koa recognized it as one of the safety measures implemented to prevent heated battles from damaging gyms. The barrier blocked any kind of energy, while still allowing free movement.
    "Battle begin!" The referee called.
    Roark crossed his arms. "First move is yours, Koa."
    "King, leer!"
    Boulder cringed.
    "Now, attack!" Roark called.
    Boulder began to glow, then several points of energy formed around the arena, condensing into gray stones. Stealth rock. King eyed the stones warily before turning his attention back on the Geodude.
    "Double kick!" King sprinted at Boulder, then delivered two powerful blows directly to its body. The Geodude slid back and grunted. The attack had done a fair amount of damage, just as he hoped. One more hit and that geodude would be done for. "Double Kick!"
    "Rock throw," Roark shouted. Rocks came showering down on King in midair, slowing his momentum. His strike barely glanced off Boulder. "Magnitude."
    King squealed as the ground shook.
    King can't take another hit. He's weak to ground attacks. I have to finish this.
    "Now, Rollout!"
    "Counter with Double Kick!" The two moves collided in an explosion of energy. The attack sent Boulder flying into the arena wall. He bounced off, crashing to the ground and lying still. King landed on his feet, his chest heaving.
    "Not bad," Roark said. He returned Boulder to his Pokéball.
    "Yeah! Nice job King!" Even though King seemed a bit winded, this would be cinch. A few more double kicks, and Onix would be down, then rinse and repeat for whatever Pokémon Roark sent out next.
    "The battle isn't over yet. Go Onix!"
    A giant Onix emerged onto the battlefield and roared."Use Screech!" A deafening grinding sound echoed across the battlefield. King howled in pain, curling up and flattening his ears. Koa clamped his hands over his ears and shut his eyes, trying to block out the noise.
    Koa just barely heard Roark's next command. "Iron Tail!" Forcing his eyes open, he cried out to King, who was still curled on the ground. The Onix brought its tail smashing down on him, sending dust and small rocks flying.
    "NO! King!" He raced onto the battlefield. King was fainted, his energy spent. A scowl grew on Koa's face, and he returned King to his Pokéball.
    "So who will your next Pokémon be?"
    Gritting his teeth, Koa clenched his fists. This wasn't good. He thought he could take Roark down with just King. And he didn't have any other Pokémon. Except... With great reluctance, he took out his only remaining Pokéball. "Go Zubat!" A twinge of guilt flowed through him when he realized he hadn't bothered to nickname Zubat. Too late. Zubat fluttered onto the battlefield, swooping in erratic circles. Suddenly, the floating rocks along the sides of battlefield crashed into Zubat, crushing him between them before separating Koa cursed. He'd forgotten about Stealth Rock. Zubat seemed dazed, but far from fainting. For now.
    Roark gave raised his eyebrows. "A Zubat? Well, you don't stand a chance."
    "We'll see about that..." Koa growled. His anger was boiling over by now. He wanted to charge across the battlefield and fight Roark himself for the badge.
    "Zubat, Supersonic!" Zubat's wings glowed and it fluttered towards Onix, delivering a Wing Attack.
    Onix didn't even flinch. "Hah! Well, I did promise not to go easy. Onix, screech!" Onix opened its mouth and screech. The force of the soundwaves knocked Zubat back and Zubat visibly cringed.
    "Zubat, Supersonic!" At first, Zubat didn't respond. Then its fangs glowed and it used Bite.
    "Onix, Harden!" Zubat sank its jaws into Onix. or rather, it tried, but the attack did nothing, as far as Koa could see.
    Koa stamped his foot. "Come on Zubat!" He shouted.
    "Rock Tomb!" Glowing rocks materialized around Zubat, then crashed down on it, crushing it and pinning it on the ground. A moment later, the rocks faded, leaving behind a fainted Zubat.
    "The match is over. Gym leader Roark is the winner!" The referee shouted.
    Koa yanked free Zubats Pokéball, then returned it.
    Roark returned Onix, then crossed the field to Koa. "You started strong, but you can't just rely on a single Pokémon. Your Nidoran wasn't anywhere near strong enough or tough enough to handle multiple Pokémon in a row. And your Zubat was-"
    "I know!" Koa snapped. "Look, clearly, I made a mistake. No need to rub it in."
    "I only-"
    "Just stop. King and Zubat need rest. And I have other things to do than stand around here all day." Without waiting for a response, he turned and walked away. As he exited the gym, guilt consumed him. Roark had always been friend to him and Blake. Still, he didn't need to hear all the ways that he failed. All he'd ask for was help reviving his fossil. So what if he didn't have any badges? That didn't mean he could tame a Tyrunt. For a moment, he considered sneaking into the museum and doing it himself, before dismissing it. No need to become a criminal. Not yet anyway, he thought jokingly.
    After healing his Pokémon quickly at the Pokémon center, he stocked up on supplies, then found a quiet spot near the edge of town. He needed to figure out where to go next. Taking out his two pokeballs, he sent out King and Zubat. "Listen, guys. I really failed you big time today, especially you King. I shouldn't have expected you to try and take down all three Pokémon by yourself." King chittered and nuzzled his leg.
    Koa turned to Zubat, who flapped in place. Part of him was still angry. Zubat had completely disobeyed every command. He wasn't even sure if Zubat was sorry. Or if he even... oh. That explained it. "You don't understand much human speech yet, do you? You lived in that cave your whole life probably. I bet you only saw a few humans, so you didn't have any idea what I was telling you today. Or what I'm even saying now." He sighed. How could he have forgotten something like that? He hadn't respected Zubat either. He treated king like a partner, but not Zubat. Zubat was an afterthought. "Well, you really wanted to come with me, so if you're going to be on the team, then you'll need a nickname..." He tapped his chin in thought. "Flutter? No... Too dumb. Hmmm... how about Echo? Can I call you Echo?"
    Zubat gave a happy screech in reply. "Great! From now on your name will be Echo! Now that that's done, we need to decide where to go next. We still need two badges, but we're not ready to take on Roark yet. It'd be a lot easier if we had a fighting type. But for now, I think we should head for Eterna. The gym leader there, Gardenia, uses grass-types. You guys should be able to handle that pretty easy."
    King and Echo gave cries of agreement.
    "Sweet. Let's take down Gardenia!"
    Well, I hope you all enjoyed this chapter! I really liked writing it. Please read and review and let me know what you think. Constructive criticism is appreciated, as I am writing this largely to improve my writing, as well as tell the story.
    This also explains one of my personal headcanons for how things work in Pokémon-Traditional battles are not dangerous, because my using moves/techniques, it is virtually impossible to seriously injure another Pokémon. Outside of battle however, such as in the wild, Pokémon don't always use techniques, which can be fatal (such as the Golbat). This is how predator Pokémon hunt.
    P.S. I will also make an effort from now on to reply to any reviews or questions as well.
    King (Male Nidoran)-Confusion, Leer, Double Kick, Poison Sting
    Echo (Male Zubat)-Supersonic, Leech Life, Bite, Wing Attack
    Chapter 3: Gardenia

    Next up, chapter 3. A gym battle, and a new addition to the team and more. Not much to say here. I love reading reviews, and I'll try to respond to each one. Criticism and suggestions are great as well!
    Future note: I would really appreciate thoughts specifically on the fight scenes. I'm still experimenting and struggling a bit with Pokémon fight scenes, so I would love reader opinions!
    King (Male Nidoran)-Confusion, Peck, Double Kick, Poison Sting
    Echo (Male Zubat)-Supersonic, Leech Life, Bite, Wing Attack
    Tall grass tickled Koa's legs as he followed Route 204 north. With every inhale of breath, he could smell a faint sweet scent of flowers, carried on the southern breeze. The trees all around had been cleared to make a straight forward grassy path that ended at a cliff face ahead. A large tunnel had been cut into the cliffs, and at the top he could spot the exit. Ravaged Path. The quickest route to Floaroma town.
    As he waded through a patch of tall grass towards the entrance to Ravaged Path, a spot to his left rustled. A brown furry Pokémon emerged. It had stocky body and round face with a pair of sharp buck teeth. Koa took a moment before he remembered the Pokémon-Bidoof.
    "Come on Echo, lets train!" Echo emerged from his Pokéball in a flash of light, hovering in the air. Bidoof froze and eyed Echo.
    "Okay Echo. We can totally wreck this Pokémon, and just about anything else. All you gotta do is-"
    Echo fluttered forwards, then dove at Bidoof with Wing Attack. Bidoof shrieked and tried to run, but it was too late, and the attack knocked him back. Before Bidoof could stand, Echo dived towards him, jaws wide and fangs glowing. At the last moment, Bidoof rolled to its feet and used Tackle. The two collided and Echo was knocked to the ground. Bidoof stood up and used Tackle again.
    "Dodge!" Koa shouted. Echo's rolled clumsily out of the way, just in time. "Leech Life!" Echo dived down and sank his jaws into Bidoof. Bidoof let out a squeal and squirmed away. "Wing attac-" Echo smashed Bidoof with his wings before Koa had even finished speaking. The Bidoof was tossed backwards and lay still, fainted. Echo screeched happily and performed a loop.
    "Huh... Nice job, Echo." This battle had gone so much better in contrast to yesterday's showdown at the gym. Although he couldn't help but be concerned. Echo had acted almost entirely on his own, which was fine, except he didn't think the Zubat understand most of what he said, except for the word 'dodge'. Still better than yesterday he guessed. He pushed aside the bitter memory. After beating Gardenia, he would be stronger. Then he'd beat Roark and get his Tyrunt. Echo was flying about excitedly, clearly enjoying the fresh air. Koa held King's Pokéball in the palm of his hand. "Hey King, wanna come out?"
    A moment later there was a flash of light and King burst out. He eyed Echo apathetically, then took position beside Koa. After giving him a quick scratch behind his ears, Koa pressed on, emerging from the grass and at the entrance to Ravaged Path. He strode inside, the light behind him fading. The main area of Ravaged Path was very straightforward. A staircase sloped steeply upwards to a path that curved to the right, emerging on the top of the cliff he knew. Unlike Bronze cave, which yet to be fully mapped, thanks to Onix's and such, Ravaged path was no more than a small cave with an underground lake. Within a couple minutes, he exited the cave to the upper half of Route 204.
    From here he knew it was a fairly straight shot, past some trees and through some patches of overgrown grass. He only saw few other people along the route, which didn't surprise him. Floarama wasn't a very large town. As he rounded a corner of the path, he spotted Floarama's infamous wooden arches, which had been built only a few years ago. They marked the entrances to the town, and added to flowery bright feeling of everything.
    As he passed under the arch and into Floaroma town, he was assaulted by a mix earthy and flowery scents. Floaroma town consisted of groups of small, quaint cottages with large fenced in gardens all around. Just inside the town walls, to his right, was the Pokémon Center, and just north of that, the Pokemart. Directly beside the Pokemart, he saw the town's most well known attraction- the Pick a Peck of Flowers shop. King trotted from his side towards the shop, sniffing the air. "Man I guess you guys are pretty hungry. King trotted ahead, up to the flower shop. A young lady who was tending a berry plant noticed him.
    "Hello there!" she said cheerfully. She reached out a hand to pet him, when King hissed and poked her. "Ouch! What was that for?" She shook her hand and frowned.
    Koa hurried over to the woman. She shot him a glare. "Is this your Nidoran?"
    "Well you should teach that thing some manners! What beast."
    Koa clenched his fists. "Maybe you shouldn't touch other people's Pokémon!"
    "Hmph. Just keep that thing away from me. I don't want it trampling my plants."
    King shot her a poisonous glare before trotting away. Koa glared at her back. "Don't worry King. You're not a beast, and your manners are fine." he murmured. He stepped inside the shop, a bell above the door chiming as he walked in.
    "Hello, welcome to Pick a Peck of Flowers!" A young woman behind the counter answered him cheerfully. A roserade stood beside her, watching them. "Can I help you?"
    "I wanted to buy some berries for my Pokémon. Some Chesto, Pecha and... Bluk berries."
    "Sure! Rosy, can you get that for me?" the Roserade nodded and disappeared into a storeroom. It returned a few moments later with three packages balanced expertly in its hands. It placed them on the counter.
    "200 Poke!" The saleswoman said.
    Koa dished out the money, then purchased some sandwiches for himself from a nearby cafe. Then he led his Pokémon to some picnic tables near the flower meadows where he sat down to enjoy his meal. After he finished eating, and his Pokémon finished their meals, he headed for the west gate, towards Route 205. If he continued west, he could reach the famed Valley Windworks. He planned to train there a bit, before heading north for Eterna Forest, which would take at least an hour to reach.
    Once at the actual windworks, he sent both his Pokémon out. "Okay guys, I want to train Echo first, so you hang back for now, King." King huffed in disappointment, then nodded. Echo let out an excited screech, startling a Buizel by the rivers edge. It poked its head from the water and squealed irritably. "Our first opponent!" Before Koa could continue, Echo charged at the Buizel and used Bite. Buizel wrenched itself free and spouted a stream of water towards Echo.
    Echo dived straight into the attack, his wings glowing. He diverted the bulk of the attack and bit Buizel, leeching energy from it. Before Buizel could lash out, Echo let go and backed away. Buizel leaped into the air, its tails glowings, and swung them, sending a wave of energy towards Echo.
    "Get out of the way!" Koa shouted angrily.
    Echo retaliated with Supersonic. This time however, it appeared different, more like a wave of energy. Confuse Ray. The attack dazed Buizel. Powering through the attack, he struck Buizel with his wings, sending it flying. It landed at the water's edge and lay still. Though battered, Echo gave a screech of triumph. He fluttered down to Koa, still cheerful.
    "Echo!" Anger bled into Koa's words, and he glared furiously at the Zubat. "Why can't you just listen! What's wrong with you?" His anger from his battle with Roark bubbled inside him. Deep down, he knew it wasn't Echo's fault, but he ignored that. "Why can't you just do what I say?. Zubat are weak and can't take a hit, so you have to dodge. You barely even won this battle! This is why I didn't even want you coming with me!" he exploded. "You're too weak!"
    Echo stopped flying and dropped to the ground. His ears and wings dropped.
    Something rammed Koa's leg and he looked down to see King growling at him. "Stay out of this King. All Echo needed to do was obey me. I'm his trainer."
    King let out an angry shriek and headbutted him hard, making him stumble. He turned his back on Koa and walked several steps away.
    Koa looked at him, then Echo. The anger from King, and Echo's dejection crushed his heart. Guilt replaced his anger and he slowly sat down.
    "I'm sorry guys." Echo remained umoving.
    "I was wrong. This is supposed to be a partnership, and I wa acting like a master, not a partner. I ignored your feelings Echo. I just got so caught up in what I wanted and what I thought was best, I never even considered how you felt. Can you forgive me?"
    King chittered and Echo perked up slightly at his words, before both moved over to him and nuzzled him.
    After several seconds, he finally stood up. "Okay Echo. You seem tougher than a lot of Zubat I've seen. But even the strongest Pokémon can't stand up against a bad type matchup. Let's work on dodging and countering attacks. Got it?"
    Echo nodded.
    After that, training went much smoother. They battled a Shellos, and another Bidoof. He practiced dodging and countering attacks, then trained with King. After a solid hour of training, he stopped for a rest, giving his Pokémon a snack of berries.
    Then he spotted a Shellos, which he let Echo take care of. After a few more battles, he felt satisfied that he'd done enough training. He got Echo and King a quick checkup at the Floaroma Pokémon Center, then headed back Route 205 to begin the hike to Eterna Forest.
    This time, he elected to allow King and Echo to travel outside their pokeballs. As he crossed Combee river, Echo left his side and fluttered to a tree beside the river and began licking it. King dashed over to him and began to screech and chitter angrily. Koa tilted his head to the side. What was going on?
    Two Combee burst from within the tree and buzzed angrily. They flapped their wings, creating a powerful gust of air. King stood his ground braced himself. Echo was far less prepared, and was sent flying back. Koa jumped into the air and caught him before he could go far. Gently, he tossed Echo back into the air. "Alright Echo, let's crush them!"
    Gesturing dramatically to the Combee, he shouted, "Attack!"
    King used Peck and took out one Combee instantly. Then King stepped back and watched Echo.
    Combee used Gust again, but Echo looped and dodged, striking with wing attack. The Combee was knocked out instantly. "Sweet!"
    After that, they didn't encounter too many more wild Pokémon, and Koa decided not to go looking. Eterna forest would be challenging, and he didn't want to tire them out. As he neared the edge of the forest, he spotted a place he'd read about in a Guidebook to Sinnoh-Wayfarers Cabin. A large cabin built at the edge of Eterna Forest, where trainers and Pokémon could rest briefly. A tall wooden fence surrounded the cabin, and an Arcanine sat at the gate, watching his surroundings intently. It acknowledged him with a bark as he approached, the moved from in front of the gate. Koa pet him gently, scratching behind his ears before going into the cabin.
    The cabin looked empty, though a sign near the door instructed weary visitors to help themselves to food in the cabin, or to take a quick nap in the beds. He decided to forgo the nap, but took some extra berries and food for himself, just in case. Before he left, he took care to put on the armor he'd gotten. To his delight, it felt surprisingly comfortable. Then he had quick meal before setting off.
    A half hour later, he stood in front of Eterna Forest, gazing into its murky depths. He'd read a lot about the forest. Some woodcutters had carved a path leading to Eterna City long ago. They had also attempted to create paths through the rest of the woods, but were stopped by hordes of wild Pokémon and eventually gave up. The path became frequently used by travelers, but he also knew that every book about this place warned against straying too deep. Dangerous Pokémon lurked their, Pokémon who would not hesitate to kill a human, or another Pokémon. After the incident with the Golbat, he had no desire to relive that. Besides, he was more interested in caves than forests.
    With a glance at his two companions, he started into the forest. The outside sounds faded, replaced by the distant humming of bugs and gentle chirping of bird Pokémon. Thick shade enveloped him, cloaking the forest in a cool, eerie stillness. He moseyed through the forest, taking in the sights as he walked. He spotted a few other people, some young bug catchers and a few junior Pokémon scouts. As the path turned north however, he spotted a young boy in a purple tunic. He was instructing his Meditite to attack a tree.
    As Koa he approached, the boy stopped and whirled to face him. His eyes stopped and he started at Echo before breaking out into mocking laughter. His Meditite mimicked him.
    Koa clenched his fists and strode up to boy, stopping less than a foot away. "What's so funny?"
    The boy pointed and laughed again. "A Zubat! How pathetic indeed, to use such a weak Pokémon. The-"
    Koa punched him in the face. "No one calls my Pokémon weak!" Echo screeched mockingly at the boy, who crawled so his feet, hand clamped to his nose. "How dare you atack me in such a manner?"
    "I challenge you to a one on one! My Zubat vs your Meditite. If I win, you admit that Echo is awesome."
    "What if I win?" the boy growled.
    "You get the satisfaction of knowing you're right."
    The boy mused for moment before nodding. "Alright fine. I'll show you just what a mistake you made with a weakling like that. Go Tai!" Meditite hopped forwards took up a fighting stance.
    "I'll give you first move," Koa said, smirking.
    "Your loss. Tai, use Confusion." A wave of blue energy surged towards Echo.
    "Counter and confuse it." Echo's wings glowed and he used them to divert most of the energy before firing a blast of his own. It struck Meditite, who began to teeter.
    "Wing attack!" Echo dived down and struck Meditite, knocking it back.
    "Come Tai, let us finish off this foolish Zubat! Use Hidden Power."
    Tai began to charge a ball of energy, but his concentration slipped and it exploded, knocking him into a tree. Echo dived down and struck him again. Tai yelped and slumped to ground.
    "Finish him!"
    "Counter with Psyshock." Tai shook his head, clearing it, then launched a glowing bluish orb.
    Koa didn't even have time to process what was happening, and neither did Echo. The attack knocked him out of the air, and he crashed to the ground, stunned.
    "One more time Tai." The second Psyshock hit Echo, sending up a cloud of dust from the force of the impact.
    "Echo no!" Echo gave a groan and tried to stand.
    "See! Just as I predicted, your Zubat is weak." The boy smirked and Tai gave a taunting cry.
    "I know you're strong, Echo. Don't give up." Echo's body began to glow and he gave a shrill screech, flying straight into the air. The glow encompassed his whole body and his form shifted into that of Golbat before fading. Echo screeched again, then dived head on into Tai, hitting with his wings. Tai yelped, then collapsed. The boy raced over to Tai and scooped him up. He glared reproachfully at Koa, before his gaze softened. "It would seem that your Zubat-Goldbat I mean, is rather impressive." he gave Tai a berry before continuing. "I am Kody. My sister Rachel and I come here to train quite frequently."
    "Cool. I'm Koa." he shook Kody's hand, then bid him farewell.
    "Wow I can't believe you evolved already Echo. I guess you were even stronger than I thought." Echo chirped and landed on his shoulder. Koa petted his head and continued walking. He hadn't gone much farther when a girl burst out of the brush. "Hey! You're the kid who beat my brother, right?"
    "Heck yeah." She had to be the sister that Kody mentioned. Rachel, if he recalled correctly.
    "Then I challenge you to a battle! I need to know if you're actually tough, or my brother's just weak. Come on out Psy!" Rachel tossed a Pokéball, and a Psyduck emerged.
    "Want to give it a shot, Echo?"
    Echo fluttered onto the battlefield, and King gave an encouraging growl.
    "How about we make things even more interesting. I'll wager 500 Poke I can win. Winner takes all."
    Koa grinned. "Sounds like an extra 500 Poke in my pocket. I accept."
    "Psy, Water gun!" The Psy blasted a shot of water, knocking out of the air. "Now tackle it!"
    "Quick, Leech Life!"
    As Psyduck approached, Echo narrowly dodged, then sank his jaws into Psy, nearly swallowing it whole. Psy squealed in terror. A blue glow wrapped around Echo and yanked him away, smashing him into the ground.
    "One down! Still think you can win that 500 Poke?"
    Koa returned Echo to his Pokéball. "Good job." he looked up at the girl, determination still filling him. "You haven't seen my trump card yet. Let's take her down, King!"
    King sprang forwards and issued a cry of challenge.
    He launched a barrage of purple bullets, knocking Psy back. Psy stood, then staggered, his entire body glowing purple. Poisoned, Koa realized. "Let's finish this King." King leaped forward, kicking Psy. Psy flew backwards and let out a defeated moan.
    Koa cheered, pumping his fist in the air. "You did it King! Nice." King cheered with him.
    Rachel returned her Psyduck to its Pokéball and walked over to him. "Huh. Pretty good. Your Pokémon are certainly tough. Although I didn't really doubt it. My brother's always been weaker than me," she said with a chuckle. "I'm about to head back to my house in Eterna. Want to walk with me?"
    Koa considered for a moment. He hadn't really intended to go traveling with anyone, but it wasn't permanent, and exit of Eterna Forest wasn't much farther. Besides, King seemed okay with the idea, and his Pokémon might like the companionship. "Sure. Just make sure you keep up." he held out King's Pokéball, returning him so he could rest before following her.
    The rest of the walk turned out much more pleasant. The time flew by as he chatted with Rachel, who told him about her aspirations studying every psychic type possible, and training Psy until he evolved. She was easy to talk to, and since she did most of the talking, he didn't have to worry about answering uncomfortable questions about him or his past. Pretty soon, they reached the edge of the forest, where the trees grew alongside a tall cement wall, their crowns even with the top of the wall. A thick set of iron gates barred the path, keeping most of the wild Pokémon. Koa noted two Noctowl perched on top of the wall at either side of the gate. They stared at him and Rachel, unblinking. They seemed creepy to Koa, but Rachel called a hello, and they hooted in reply before turning their attention back to the forest.
    Koa and Rachel pressed on through the gates, stepping into Eterna City. He emerged into the city, pausing to take in the sights. Quaint, weathered brick buildings lined uniform streets. The architecture gave the city an old fashioned feel, and combined with the cobblestone streets, reminded Koa that Eterna City had been Sinnoh's first city.
    "So what are your plans here?" Rachel asked.
    "I'm gonna beat Gardenia and get a badge."
    "Well with your Nidoran and Golbat, it should be easy. Good luck, I better head home. Thanks for walking with me, it was fun."
    Koa nodded.
    "See you around!" Rachel called, before jogging away, vanishing around a corner. Koa watched her go, then bolted north. There was something else here that he wanted to see, something he'd only ever seen in tour guides. He rounded a corner and started east, when he spotted it. A two towering metal statues, carved in an elaborate representation of Palkia and Dialga. He stopped in front of the statues, breathless, staring up at them in awe. They loomed over his head, gleaming in the late afternoon sun. Each statue stood at least 30 feet tall, although he privately wondered if the real Pokémon were even larger. With some effort, he dragged his eyes away from the statue to read the inscriptions below them.
    The one beneath Dialga read,
    "The creation of DIALGA,
    The giver of time...

    In laughter, there is tears...
    And, likewise it is with time.
    The same time flows on.
    For it is the blessing of DIALGA."

    While Palkia's read
    "The birth of PALKIA.
    The creator of parallel dimensions...
    Alive, yet not alive...
    Everything drifts in space...
    To arrive in the same universe.
    It is the blessing of PALKIA."

    "Cool..." he whispered, stroking the text.
    "So you came here to see the statues too?"
    A voice behind Koa startled him,causing him to jump. He turned around to see the caped boy from the trainer's license exam. Koa grasped for his name, but he couldn't recall it.
    "To think that Pokémon themselves hold mastery over the fabric of the universe. Time and Space..." his voice trailed for a moment. "Antimatter."
    "You mean Giratina?"
    The boy tilted his head, his dark hair falling to the side slightly. He quirked an eyebrow at Koa before nodding. "Indeed. Although I am surprised to hear you know of Giratina. Not many do know it seems, and even more are ignorant of the legends."
    Although he didn't look much older than him, he sounded odd. His voice had some kind of dialect or accent, although he not one he'd ever heard. And the way he spoke sounded unusual as well.
    "Yeah, the legends are so cool! I know everything about them pretty much. Once I'm strong enough I'm going to find the Spear Pillar."
    At the mention of the name, the boy broke into a chuckle, shaking his head. "Certainly you jest? No trainer has managed to navigate the maze of tunnels within Mt Coronet, nor braved the skies above. If you know the legends, then surely you know that the legends themselves have hidden that place."
    "Doesn't mean I'm going to give up. Who are you anyway? I remember you from the license exam, but what are you doing here?"
    "I'm here for the same reason as you, I suspect. To visit these statues, and challenge Gardenia, among other things." He frowned and looked down at his watch. "Alas, I am afraid I have tarried too long. I have business to tend to, as well as preparation for my gym battle."
    ""Good luck the, " Koa said as an afterthought. The boy paused and glanced back at him.
    "I have no need of luck. All I require if the strength of my partners, and our skills." he strode swiftly away from the platform. Koa watched him go, his eyes narrowed. A moment later, he smacked himself in the head. I forgot to ask his name!
    He wanted to hit himself a lot harder, but he didn't need people asking questions. Maybe he would run into him later. He jogged back through the city to the Pokémon center, where he stopped to get his Pokémon a checkup. By the time he was done, he found it was far too late to to challenge the gym. Burying his frustration, he settled for a small room in an nearby inn. Going to sleep was too difficult this early in the night, so he stayed up, planning for tomorrow.
    Gardenia should be fairly easy, but just in case, he had picked up a trainer's guide from the Pokémon center to read up. Supposedly, Gardenia had a Cherubi, Turtwig and Roserade. The Cherubi he wasn't particularly worried about, and the Turtwig likely wouldn't be too much trouble, but the Roserade did worry him. It was stronger than the other two. At least he wouldn't have to worry about his Pokémon being poisoned. That was one edge up. He thought back on his battle with Rachel. Maybe he could poison Turtwig. Tose were naturally a lot tougher, which meant longer to take down.
    Koa rolled over in bed and "Here's the plan guys. Echo, you finish off Cherubi quickly. Then we try to confuse Turtwig and poison it. For Roserade..."
    Echo chirped and fluttered about the room, making erratic, jerky movements. Koa snapped his fingers. "That's it! Roserade isn't that fast. And it uses distance attacks. If we can dodge long enough and wear it out, then we can attack. Thanks Echo." Satisfied to finally have a plan, he bid his Pokémon goodnight before turning over and going to sleep.
    As usual, he awoke early next morning and took a short jog before returning to a cafe for breakfast. He set out for the gym immediately. Since Terna was a larger city, there would no doubt be a fair few challengers, and he wanted to get there before them. As he walked to the gym, he passed by the south gate. A large sign posted beside the exit read "Cycling Path Ahead-Bikes Only!"
    He watched enviously as a young woman sped by on her bike, zooming through exit. Aside from his cousin's bike, he never had his own, since they were so expensive. The Cycle Shop in Eterna was the only bike distributor in all of Sinnoh, and the process wasn't cheap. He set aside the thoughts as he approached the gym. After Roark, he didn't intend to lose.
    Outside, the gym looked fairly average. Unlike the rest of Eterna, the gym's architecture had a distinctly newer feel, and it was painted in shades of green. Taking a quick breath, he stepped inside. A rush of warm, slightly muggy air greeted inside of the gym resembled a giant green house, with rows of trees and various plants growing all about. Although they were not in any specific order, they still seemed very orderly. A forested scent hung thickly about, and he took a deeper breath and closed his eyes, the scents reminding him of the woods around Canalave, minus the ocean smell.
    "I see you are enjoying my gym."
    Koa opened his eyes to see a young woman with short orange hair and a green tunic. Gardenia. She smiled brightly, and her eyes seemed to give off a sparkle.
    "I'm here to challenge you to a battle."
    For a few moments, Gardenia didn't say anything. Koa was about to demand his battle again, when she spoke. "Very well, I accept. Come, I'll show you to the arena." She nodded towards another woman tending to a flower patch. "Lavender, meet my by the arena please." the woman nodded and hurried away, and koa followed Gardenia.
    He followed her through the rows of plants, until they emerged to a wide space bordered by thick, sturdy trees in uniform lines. They took their places on either end of the battlefield. Lavender emerged from a path between the trees. Gardenia nodded in acknowledge before turning back to Koa.
    "So, challenger. What is your name?"
    "Koamaru." he replied.
    "Very well Koamaru. As is custom, I will use the traditional three Pokémon. You are free to use as many as you like."
    "All I need is two." Koa said.
    Gardenia nodded and continued. "How much would you like to wager on this match?"
    Koa paused for a moment. He'd forgotten about the wager rule. Any challenger had to wager money on an official challenge. Some gyms would allow anything from a minor 1 poke, to thousands more. Roark tended to be a bit looser with those rules, he knew, especially ith friends. His thoughts drifted to the Cycle Shop. Maybe... it was a long shot, but if he won, it would pay off.
    "20,000 Poke."
    Lavender gasped softly, and Gardenia's eyes widened. "My my... Are you sure?"
    Koa nodded determinedly. "Absolutely."
    "20,000 it is then. Lavender, if you would go over the official terms please?"
    "Certainly, Miss Gardenia. This will be a single battle match. The challenger, Koamaru, will be using two Pokémon. The defender, gym leader Gardenia, will use three. The battle will continue until one side is out of usable Pokémon. The challenger may substitute, but the defender cannot. The terms of the wager is 20,000 poke, winner takes all. Trainers, send out your starting Pokémon."
    Koa unhooked Echo's Pokéball and tossed it out. Almost simultaneously, Gardenia sent out Cherubi. Perfect.
    Lavender raised her arm. "First move belongs to the challenger. Battlers, begin!" A loud chime echoed through the gym.
    "You know the drill Echo!"
    Echo glanced back him, narrowing his eyes and nodding. He shot into the sky then dived at Cherubi with his wings extended.
    "Dodge!" Cherubi effortlessly leaped sideways, but Echo swerved with the movement, crashing into Cherubi. It let out a high pitched squeal as it soared through the air and bounced off a tree. It collapsed, and Gardenia gasped. "What? But..."
    "Echo must have struck Cherubi's weak point." he smirked. This was going excellent so far. But would she send out Roserade, or Turtwig?
    "This battle is far from over." She returned Cherubi, tucking the Pokéball away, then pulled out her next one. "Twig! Show them the power of a grass-type!"
    A Turtwig burst out the battlefield, growling a challenge. Koa hesitated. He felt sure Echo could win, but he needed Golbat fresh for Roserade. "Echo, return. Go King!"
    King emerged onto the battlefield with a shriek. "Poison sting!"
    The Turtwig withstood the attack, then grunted. His skin took on the same purple shade Psy had.
    "Finish this quick, Twig. Razorleaf!"
    King dodged, the leaves only grazing him, then lunged forward, jabbing Twig with his horn. "Now Twig!" Turtwig whirled around, spinning effortlessly on one leg, launching Razor Leaf into King' face. King roared in pain and staggered , King's body began to glow and turn white. A few moments later, he evolved into a Nidorino.
    "Wha-" Gardenia gasped in shock, her Turtwig giving an equally shocked cry. Before it could recover its senses, King struck it with Poison sting. Twig flew back, crashing into a border tree.
    "Turtwig is now unable to battle! Gardenia, please send out your final Pokémon."
    An fierce and angry frown replaced the early cheerful smile and Gardenia tossed out her last Pokémon. Roserade.
    "Here we go..." Koa murmured. "Let's see if we can get a few good hits, eh King?" King glanced back him, giving a nod of acknowledgement.
    "Peck!" King charged forwards, horn glowing.
    Gardenia didn't say a word. Roserade lifted its arms. A bright flash of light shone from them. Koa held up his hands, shielding his eyes, and he heard King cry out in surprise. And Roserade grunt. Spots danced across his vision, blinding him almost completely. King yelped again, this time in pain. "King!" he shouted.
    Koa blinked rapidly, the spots dancing across his vision finally fading. Roserade stood triumphant over an unconscious King.
    "Nidorino is unable to battle! Koa, please send out your final Pokémon."
    Koa frowned in thought as he returned King to his Pokéball. Flash had disrupted King's attack, but judging by the Roserade's expression, it had taken some damage as well. He send Echo back out. "You know what to do, right Echo?"
    Echo nodded confidently. A sudden thought occurred to Koa. He hadn't known about Roserade's flash before, but this changed his plans.
    "Echo, use Wing attack." Instead of diving at his target however, he swung his wing in a powerful downstroke, sending blades of energy spinning at Roserade.
    "Counter!" Roserade shot a barrage of multicolored leaves, and the attacks collided. Most of the energy was lost, although several leaves still struck Echo.
    So Echo learned Air Cutter? "Alright, Air Cutter again!"
    "Flash!" Bright light flooded the arena again, though this time Koa was more prepared. Echo fluttered dazedly about, seemingly blinded. As he turned as back to Gardenia though, Koa saw him wink. What was Echo up to?
    "Attack!" he called. Echo gave a shrill screech, then dived at Roserade. He fired a Confuse ray.
    "Blind it again and dodge with flash!"
    Roserade leaped out of the way and raised its hands again, giving a cry of surprise when the seemingly blinded Golbat followed her movements, diving straight at her. Just as she was about to use Flash, Echo struck her and knocked her hands back, forcing them into her face. The flash went off, this time much more muted than earlier. Roserade yelped and shook herself free, staggering away from Echo and shaking her head.
    "Leech life!" Echo soared towards her and sank his jaws in deep. Roserade cried out as its entire body was nearly enveloped.
    "Weather Ball!"
    Roserade jammed its hands against Echo's body and unleashed a blast of energy. he flew back, slowing himself with some difficulty.
    "Air cutter!" Echo launched the blades at Roserade.
    "Sideways, quick!" gardenia called. Roserade rolled sideways, only taking half the attack.
    Once more, before Roserade had even composed herself, Echo used air cutter. This time, despite the blinded Roserade's attempt to dodge, Echo moved with her, hitting her full on. Roserade fell to the ground.
    "Roserade is unable to battle! Koamaru is the victor!" Lavender called.
    "What! But... how?" Gardenia cried. "I blinded your Pokémon!" As she spoke, she frowned sadly and returned Roserade. They started towards the gym exit.
    "That might have worked ok on King, but not Echo. Golbat's hearing is sick. I realized after you used flash that he could use his ears just as well as his eyes." Koa said as he walked.
    Gardenia frowned, then her cheerful smiled returned. "Excellent strategy. I am disappointed I did not see it. I suppose this is yours then." She withdrew a gleaming green object from her pocket and handed it to him. The Forest badge. A symbol of your skill. Nice work."
    "Sick." Koa said. One more to go...
    "I believe this is yours too." she paused and turned, picking up a briefcase from Lavender, who had just arrived. She handed it to him, and koa took it carefully. "That's your 20,000 poke."
    Koa gave a loud whoop.
    "Be careful." Gardenia chided, her voice serious. "There have been robberies lately. I don't recommend traveling with that very far."
    Koa nodded, then practically ran out of the gym, barely able to contain his elation.
    An half hour later, he sat in grassy area at the eastern edge of Eterna City, enjoying a meal with his Pokémon, and relishing the new bike he bought. He couldn't wait to take it to Cycling Road and really test it out. Although he still had one thing to do before leaving. Find a fighting type. He knew this area might have some, and a fighting type would really help against Roark. A grass type could work as well, or even water, but he wanted a fighting type badly.
    As he ate, the sounds of battle drew his attention. He wandered in the direction, and spotted Tyrogue and a Hoot Hoot at the trees edge, engaged in something of a shouting match. They seemed to be arguing about territory, although he wasn't completely certain. He crouched behind a bush to watch. A second later, a fight broke out. Koa watched as the Tyrogue took down Hoot Hoot with ease, declaring his triumph loudly. The Hoot Hoot flew away. Less than a minute later however, two large Noctowls landed in front of Tyrogue. The parents, if Koa had to guess. He could even see Hoot Hoot behind them.
    Fluffing their feathers up, they gave the Tyrogue intimidating glares, screeching angrily. Koa's eyes widened at the sight of the two gigantic birds, who were only a few inches shorter than him. His gaze went to Tyrogue, expecting it to back down. Instead, it stood firm, issuing a challenge cry of its own.
    With simultaneously shrieks, both Noctowls descended on Tyrogue. Koa couldn't help but watch, expecting the poor Tyrogue to get thrashed. If it weren't for the fact that both sides were using techniques, and not out to kill, he might have intervened. As it stood, it didn't feel right to step in.
    Yet as Koa watched, his astonishment only grew. Tyrogue dodged and weaved effortlessly between the Noctowl attacks, countering them and using their strength against them at every turn, even tossing one Noctowl into the other. Despite taking hard hits himself, he never once backed down, and a few minutes later, the exhausted looking Tyrogue stood triumphant.
    "Wow..." Koa whispered. "I want him on my team."
    For a half hour, he watched the Tyrogue. It at a few berries, then rested for a short period, before standing up and starting into the woods. Koa refused to lose his chance.
    "Hey!" he stood up and shouted. The Tyrogue whirled around and growled.
    "I want you to joi-"
    Tyrogue gave a battle cry and took up a fighting stance. Before Koa could react, Tyrogue lunged at him. Koa yelped in surprise and backed away, almost falling over. "Alright, if you wanna fight, then let's fight! Echo, take him down!" he tossed out Echo's Pokéball.
    The battle ended up much shorter than Koa expected, with tyrogue as the victor. "Okay King, show him who's boss."
    King gazed at Tyrogue with an evaluating stare. Tyrogue roared a challenge, but King didn't flinch. Tired of waiting, he ran at King. Just feet before Tyrogue reached him, King sprang forwards, and the two collided. They struggled, grappling for dominance. Tyrogue wrestled King, then yanked hard to the side, trying to flip him onto his back. King rolled with the motion, flipped Tyrogue over and placed his claw on the smaller Pokémon's chest. Tyrogue struggled for a few seconds, then conceded. King took a step back and let him up.
    Tyrogue stood, dusted itself off, and bowed to Koa. "Does this mean you'll join my team?"
    King grunted.
    After a moment of deliberation, Tyrogue nodded.
    Authors note: In this chapter, I really wanted to establish some key differences. It always bothered me how in the anime, Pokémon seem incapable of battling competently without the aid of trainer. Surely they must battle in the wild all the time, and not be completely useless? I wanted to go for a different feel, where its a partnership. If you've seen the anime in BW series, you might remember the arc with Iris' Dragonite. I hated it. It felt like they glossed over something crucial-Dragonite has a different battle style that he likes. And instead of adapting and working with it, Dragonite had to 'learn to trust its trainer'. Ew. I get the message they wanted, but why couldn't we have both? Just an opinion. Anyways...
    Also, in this, Pokémon are fully capable of leaving their Pokéball at any time. Even if you were to catch a Pokémon in a Pokéball of some kind, it can run away or disobey utterly, so you need to put effort into taming it and bonding with it, and it still needs to ultimately choose to be with the trainer.
    I also decided to keep something I love from the manga-Trainers dont always give their Pokémon an exact move. They simply say attack, and trust their Pokémon to understand what works. Sure, if you're going for a split of the moment strategy, you need direct commands, but as long as there is mutual trust, it doesn't matter.
    Honetly i just really want less "hey pet. Sit. stand. Bark." and more of a 'we understand each other so gr8 yep"
    TL;DR, Pokémon are really good at battling too, and dont always NEED a human to tell them what to do.
    King (Male Nidoran)-Confusion, Peck, Double Kick, Poison Sting
    Echo (Male Zubat)-Supersonic, Leech Life, Bite, Wing Attack

    Chapter 4: Reawakening

    Here is chapter 4! Koa rechallenges Roark to try and get his second badge and revive his fossil. But not all goes as planned...
    This chapter is a bit shorter than previous ones, but it felt like the right spot to end. Also, I decided to try a new editing program, and tweak the way I write battles slightly. Let me know what you all think.
    P.S. The 'PPPP' thing is supposed to be a line break, for some reason I cant get hyphens or tildes to work.
    King (Male Nidorino){Ability: Poison Point}-Confusion, Peck, Double Kick, Poison Sting
    Echo (Male Golbat) {Ability: Inner Focus}-Supersonic, Leech Life, Bite, Wing Attack
    Tyrogue {Ability: Guts} -Tackle, Mach Punch, Foresight, ?

    Koa stared at the long stretch of road before him. Unlike most of the routes crisscrossing the region, this road was smooth and flawless, its concrete pathway well maintained. A thick median split it down the middle, dividing two lanes of traffic-bikes coming and going. Breaks in the media allowed for riders to make u turns. Cycling road. The only route in all of Sinnoh designed for bikers, tailored just for them. Every cyclist's dream, the road consisted of a single slanted slope that ran from Eterna to Oreburgh. It was also his fastest route home. A good two hour ride, but much better than the hike back through the forest and through Floaroma.
    "Ready for this?" he turned to his Pokémon, who stood by his side- an aloof looking Nidorino, an over eager Zubat, and his newest member, a Tyrogue. King and Echo both gave encouraging cries, but Tyrogue said nothing, and made no noise. He stood, his small arms folded over his chest, glaring down the hill as if it were his next opponent.
    His hand went to his belt, and he detached King and Echo's Pokéball, returning both of them. "You guys will have to stay in your pokeballs for now. I can't expect you to run the whole way. Besides, it might be dangerous. That means you too Tyrogue." He hadn't been able to come up with a nickname yet, and Tyrogue had reacted negatively to the ones he'd tried to far.
    After watching him for another moment, he pulled out his Pokéball. This time, Tyrogue responded with an angry cry, and Koa paused. "Fine. No Pokéball then. But if you start to lag, than I'm returning you. And stay close. Don't need you getting run over. Deal?" Tyrogue nodded.
    With one last glance at Tyrogue, Koa mounted his bike and pushed off, coasting down the hill. The angle was steep, enough to keep him going with almost no pedaling, but not steep enough to go very fast. Tyrogue ran beside him, keeping pace easily. As he coasted down the hill, he passed quite a few other travelers going about their business. He gazed across the edge of the road, taking in the scenery. The route bridged a forested valley, through which a winding river ran. A brief temptation seized him to pull off to the side and look closer, but the weight of his backpack reminded him of the fossil that it held, and his mission to resurrect it.
    "Ready to kick it up a notch?"
    Tyrogue grunted in response and started to run ahead. Koa pedaled harder, picking up speed fast. For a good twenty minutes, he kept a steady, even pace. As he whizzed past a break in the median, a biker came up beside him and swerved towards the median, cutting him off. He crashed into the other biker and flew over his handlebars, throwing out his hands to stop himself and struck the ground hard. His head smacked the pavement and he rolled to his side. Pain burned across his limbs, concentrating on his hands and knees. A throbbing headache pulsed in his skull, and he began to regret his lack of helmet. With some effort, he pushed himself to his hands and knees and glared at the other biker, who was dusting himself off.
    "What's your problem?" he shouted.
    The other rider, a muscular young man with spiky dark green hair, turned and glared at him as he picked up his bike. He looked to be at least twenty. "You should watch what you're doing idiot!"
    "What? You cut me off!" Koa exploded. He clenched his hands into fists. Suddenly, Tyrogue lunged forwards, landing between them, and issued a cry of challenge.
    "So you wanna fight? Well I'll show you a fight, shrimp. The great Ricardo never backs down." Ricardo pulled a Pokéball from his belt and sent out a Pokémon that resembled a purple mass of sludge. A Muk. Fear filled Koa, and his chest tightened. It took a lot of hard training to evolve a Grimer. This Muk had to be exceptionally strong. Still, that didn't matter. He had three Pokémon. "My Muk is gonna wipe that Tyrogue out. 900 poke says I win this."
    "You're on!" Koa replied. His earlier concerns had vanished. Between his three Pokémon, he would be fine. Besides, no way was he going to back down from this arrogant jerk.
    "Use Sludge Wave!" A wave of purple ooze flowed from Muk's body and roared towards Tyrogue.
    Tyrogue stood, unmoving, with clenched fists. His head was cocked to the side, and he realized Tyrogue was waiting for his command. His mind fumbled to remember Tyrogue's attacks, but only one came to mind- "Use tackle!" The wave crashed into Tyrogue before he could move, knocking him back and covering him in purple slime. At its trainers behest, Muk attacked the downed Tyrogue again, blasting it with another hunk of poisonous sludge, flattening its opponent to the ground. Tyrogue cried out in pain and struggled to stand, its limbs shaking from the effort.
    There was no way Tyrogue had the strength or skill to handle this. Especially if he became poisoned. "Return!" he held out Tyrogue's Pokéball, but it dodged the beam of red light, glaring back him and shouting an angry cry.
    "Hah! You're a pretty sad trainer. Can't even get your Pokémon to obey you."
    "My Pokémon can do what they want!" Koa shouted angrily.
    Cheers from around him distracted him, and he turned to see several bikers gathered around, watching. At least half the crowd were cheering, calling out Muk's name over and over. "Even they know who the winner is," Ricardo said.
    "Fake out!" Tyrogue stood and raced at Muk, stopping less than a foot away. He slammed his hands together, sending a burst of energy at Muk, knocking it back a bit. The Muk shut its eyes and grunted.
    "Now, Mach Punch!" Tyrogue drove his fist into Muk. His fist sank into Muk's body, and Muk hissed. The crowd began to cheer even louder, and Koa heard some of them calling for Tyrogue.
    "Sludge bomb."
    "Tyrogue, get back!" Tyrogue yanked his fist free, just as a burst of dark ooze exploded in his face. He flew back and crashed into the ground, grunting in pain. To Koa's surprise, he tried to stand. A moment later, his limbs gave out and he sank to the ground. Koa rushed to his side and picked him up. His eyes were clenched shut, and his small frame shuddered in Koa's hands.
    No way he was going to let Tyrogue fight like this.
    "Ready to admit defeat yet?"
    "Never!" If only for Tyrogue, he would keep battling. After a moment of deliberation, he returned Tyrogue and sent out King. With King's confusion technique, defeating Muk would be a cinch.
    "Do you wanna fight this guy?" King nodded and leaped forwards.
    "Attack!" King eyes glowed and a wave of energy surged at Muk. It struck its body, seemingly sinking into the gooey mass. A cry of pain came from its gaping purple jaws.
    "You really think my Muk is gonna go down that easy? Mud bomb!" With a gurgling roar, Muk formed a sphere of slick mud hurled it at King.
    King squealed and tried to lunge out of the way, but he moved to slow. The mud smashed down on him, crushing him and drowning out his squeals of pain. Slowly, the mud oozed away, and faded, revealing King's still form.
    Head hung low, Koa returned King and tried to block out the noise of the crowds. They were cheering even louder now, quite excited by the thrashing he was getting. With only one Pokémon left, his confidence and anger was beginning to ebb, but he kept up his outer bravado as he sent out Echo. Without a moment's hesitation, Echo dived into battle.
    Unfortunately, for all of Echo's spirit, it meant nothing to Muk's power, and less than a minute later, Echo lay on the ground, defeated.
    "Pay up kid." Ricardo held out his hand.
    Koa hung his head in defeat and slowly withdrew the promised sum of money, handing it to the man. The biker stuffed it into his jacket pocket before turning away and swaggering over to his bike. "And that's how you win a battle folks."
    Several other bikers announced their approval before starting to bike away. Koa glared furiously at his back as he biked away. Once he'd gone, he carefully walked his bike over to a flat lookout point on the side of the road, and sent out all three of his Pokémon. After a pecha berry for Tyrogue's poison, and potions for his other two Pokémon, they looked much better, all signs of the battle gone.
    As soon as King was healed, he whirled on Tyrogue, chittering angrily. Tyrogue huffed and crossed his arms, turning his back on King. After a few seconds, King turned away, shaking his head in disgust. Echo fluttered about, screeching in concern, but both Pokémon ignored him. After a moment, he perched on the railing, his body drooping.
    Koa wanted to say something, but he couldn't think of anything. Perhaps it was best to let them work it out on their own anyways. "We gotta get going." he muttered. Pulling out his pokeballs, he returned the three Pokémon, then mounted his bike, cruising down Cycling Road once more.
    Just over an hour later, he reached Route 207, the short bypass between Cycling Road and Oreburgh North gate. Ten minutes later, he had crossed through the gate into Oreburgh. He slowed down, taking his time and catching his breath.. First, he pedaled to the Pokémon center and dismounted. He pressed a button on the top of the handlebars, and the bike condensed into a small metal box. Even though he'd seen the technology before, he still marveled at it as he put it in his pocket. Unlike his cousin's bike, which was far more archaic in comparison, the newest models were designed with similar technology to pokeballs, to make them more convenient. Whistling a tune, he stepped inside the Pokémon center and got the nurse, Nurse Myra, to check out his Pokémon. Afterwards, stopped at a restaurant and had a meal with his Pokémon. Over lunch, he discussed strategies.
    "I battled Roark once before, so I know what we're up against. He's got Geodude, Onix and a Cranidos. Tyrogue, Nidoran, I'll need you two the most. We probably don't need to worry that much. After all this training, I'm sure we're a lot stronger than our first battle. His Pokémon gave enthusiastic replies, although he noted that King and Tyrogue still kept their distance from each other. Well, that was a problem to solve after he beat Roark.
    Ten minutes later, he stood once again on the battlefield, facing Roark. This time, he felt complete and utter surety. After the referee had declared the basic rules, Koa put down a bet of 800 poke. Enough to have a bit of spending money, but since he wasn't exactly poor at the moment, he didn't bother with a larger wager.
    With a blast of a horn, the battle began. Geodude he defeated with relative ease, and Tyrogue hardly broke a sweat. Onix proved to be only slightly more difficult, and within a few minutes, lay defeated. Tyrogue's breathing was heavier now, but he still stood strong.
    Roark nodded, clearly impressed. "Not bad, Koa. You've clearly trained a lot. Think you can take down my next Pokémon like you did earlier?"
    "Heck yeah," Koa replied.
    With a wry grin, Roark tossed out Cranidos.
    "Just like we discussed, Tyrogue." With a reluctant growl, Tyrogue returned to his side, and Koa sent out King.
    The referee raised his hand, then dropped it, shouting "Battle begin!"
    "Confusion to block!" Cranidos broke into a fast run, his head lowered as he charged straight at King. King's eyes glowed and he sent a wave of energy towards the Pokémon. The attack broke harmlessly against its skull and it didn't slow. Before King could gather himself again, Cranidos crashed head first into him, sending him sliding back several feet.
    "Did you really think that would do anything? Cranidos have the toughest skulls of any fossil Pokémon."
    Koa frowned. Clearly, Cranidos was much tougher than he thought. Still, he wouldn't let that stop him. "Attack!"
    Barely had King sprang forwards than Cranidos disappeared, tunneling underground. King landed, then took off, running in a zigzag motion.
    "You're not the first to try that strategy." The words had scarcely left Roark's mouth when Cranidos erupted from the earth right underneath King. The force sent King soaring upwards. With a squeal of shock, King plummeted to the ground, crashing with a loud thud and small cloud of dust. His breaths came in heaves as he struggled to his feet.
    Suddenly, Cranidos staggered and snarled, grimacing in obvious pain. Koa thought he heard Roark swear, and he smiled. "Did you forget about Nidorino's Poison Point?"
    "It'll take more than that to defeat me. Headbutt again!"
    "Double Kick!" The two Pokémon charged at each other. As Cranidos approached, King moved faster, then stopped hard, front flipping over Cranidos before bringing his hind legs down on its back. It howled in pain, breathing hard. Before Koa could issue another attack, it dived into the ground once more, burrowing deep underground. Anger bubbled inside Koa as King began to dart around the field again. This would never work. Before he could think of another strategy, Cranidos exploded from underneath King, knocking him aside. King fell to the ground, fainted. With reluctance, Koa returned him, his gaze never leaving Cranidos. No longer did it stand proud and arrogant. Instead, its head hung low and its gaze looked vaguely unfocused. The poison was taking its toll. Time to end this.
    "Alright Tyrogue, you're up!" Tyrogue bounded ran onto the battlefield and took a fighting stance, swaying rhythmically on his feet, and glaring at his opponent. Seeing Tyrogue gave him an idea. One that could end the battle now.
    Cranidos gave a roar, but halfway through, it coughed, its legs nearly giving out.
    "No way! Not yet! I'm not giving up!" Roark shouted. Cranidos echoed his sentiment, but Koa couldn't care less. In his mind, the battle was already over.
    "Dig!" Cranidos dived underground once more, but this time, Koa felt ready. "Alright Tyrogue, zig zag!"
    Without hesitation, Tyrogue began to dart across the battlefield, changing direction erratically.
    "Really? You can't possibly believe that strategy would work!"
    "Actually, I was going to ask you the same thing." Koa smirked. "Tyrogue, jump!"
    Tyrogue bent low, then launched himself straight up into the air, easily making it several feet high. A split second later, Cranidos burst from the ground like a Dewgong breaching, soaring straight towards Tyrogue.
    "Now Mach Punch!"
    Tyrogue understood his command precisely, and rotated skillfully midair, and faced straight down, delivering a powerful blow to Cranidos, knocking it straight into the ground with such force that a cloud of dirt was kicked up. Tyrogue landed, folding its arms and smirking confidently. When all had settled, Cranidos lay still in the center of a small crater.
    "W-what! This can't be! My buffed up Pokémon..." Roark gaped in disbelief, then returned his Cranidos, turning to Koa. "Well Koa, you have certainly proven yourself. You and your Pokémon were strong, stronger than mine. Rules are rules, so this is yours." From inside his jacket pocket, he withdrew two objects. One, a pouch of money, and two, a small, shining badge. It vaguely resembled a boulder, with Pokéball like lines encircling it. "The Coal badge. Don't get let it get to your head though. I'm still not reviving your fossil until you show me two badges."
    A sly smile spread across Koa's face, and he slid his badge case out of his pocket. Flipping it open, he gestured dramatically to the Forest Badge. Then he placed the Coal badge inside as well. "See? Two badges."
    Roark gasped. "You beat Gardenia?"
    "It was easy with King and Echo's help. At the sound of his name, Echo popped out of his Pokéball and landed beside Koa.
    "Wow! Your Zubat evolved already?"
    "Yeah. Echo must have been fairly strong when I met him."
    Roark nodded. "Not bad. Well then, now that you have two badges, a promise is a promise. Let's see to your fossil."
    Once inside Oreburgh museum, he followed Roark past the various displays, to the rear of the museum and through a door marked 'Staff only'. They descended a flight of stairs. At the bottom, a long corridor lit by white fluorescent bulbs stretched before them, and thick glass windows allowed a peek inside various labs. Roark led him to a sliding door with a plaque reading 'Revival Lab'. Unlike some of the other labs, there was no glass window allowing a glimpse inside.
    Roark knocked on the door, then called out, "Jared? It's Roark."
    A few moments later, the door slid open revealing a short man with glasses and long grayish black hair. The lighting gave his light skin an even paler look, and Koa wondered how often he got out of the lab. Behind him, Koa could see several desks with computers, and various rows of equipment.
    "Ahh, Roark. Always a pleasure to see you down here. What can I help you with?"
    "A friend of mine would like to revive a fossil. This is Koa. He discovered a Jaw fossil in Bronze cave."
    "Really? How odd. I've not known Tyrunt to be found anywhere on Sinnoh. How odd..." he murmured. "And Bronze cave of all places. Hmm..."
    Jared, murmuring to himself as he turned and walked into the lab. The room itself seemed like a pretty average lab, but what caught his eye was the machine on the far side, behind a set of keypad locked double doors and a thick plastic window. It was huge and advanced looking, consisting of a small metal cube-like contraption on one side, hooked to a far far larger metal box by various tubes and wires.
    "If you would hand me the specimen please."
    Koa dragged his eyes off the machine and unslung his backpack, gently removing the fossil. He handed it to Jared.
    "Excellent. This will only take a few minutes. I must admit, I am terribly excited. We've never revived a Kalosian fossil here before." Jared strode to the door and punched in a few digits on the keypad. They slid open and he stepped inside, walking over to the smaller of the two metal containers. Koa hurried to the plastic window. With the press of a button, a tray slid out from the machine. Jared carefully placed the fossil inside and closed the tray. He typed in something on a panel at the front of the machine, then stepped back.
    Bright flashes of light pulsed from the machine and it whirred and beeped loudly, before settling into a steady, low hum. Very little happened for the next several minutes, and Koa found himself growing quickly bored.
    Loud alarms blared, and the lights overhead flickered. There was a distant noise, like a dull boom, and the room went dark. The machines hum grew into a high pitched whine before it exploded. Shards of debris hammered against the glass and door, and Koa ducked.
    "Jared!" Roark shouted. A low hum filled the room as the backup generators kicked in, and orange light filled the room from safety lights ringing the room. Through the glass, Koa could see no sign of Jared. The machine had turned to a heap of smoking, twisted metal. He followed Roark to the door as he typed in the code. The doors slid open and he covered his nose as he stepped into the smoke filled room.
    Koa held his breath, his eyes burning as he peered through the smoke, which was only growing denser. He thought he saw orange flames licking at the remnants of the machine, but he wasn't sure. Roark moved slowly about the room, desperately calling for Jared. A high pitched squealing roar filled the room, and something large brushed by Koa's leg. He yelped and leaped away, almost crashing into Roark, who was picking up an unconscious Jared off the floor.
    "Watch it! We have to get him out of here and to a hospital. Help me lift him, and keep him still."
    Carefully as he could, Koa picked up Jared's legs, carrying him out of the room. Roark lay him on the floor outside, and started to check for a pulse. Koa glanced up and almost screamed. Just a few feet away, by the room's exit, stood a stocky, reptilian Pokémon. Dark brown scales covered its body, which vaguely resembled Roark's Cranidos, except its head was far larger, and its legs were thick and powerful. It roared again, then charged at the doors, smashing into them and warping the frame severely. Jamming its jaws into the gap, it tore the door apart with its jaws, creating a hole big enough to fit through.
    Koa gaped at it, unable to believe it. He'd read books about the strength of a Tyrunt's jaws, but seeing it in person was far more impressive, and frightening.
    Roark cursed and looked up from Jared. "Koa! That's your Tyrunt! It must be trying to escape. There's no telling what kind of damage it might do to people or Pokémon. I'll stay with him, you catch him!"
    Shaking himself, Koa scrambled to his feet and nodded. He raced out the door, barely hearing Roark's command to be careful. He raced down the corridor, taking the steps up to the ground floor two at a time. Emerging onto the ground floor, he was met with chaos. Large crowds of patrons were all surging towards the exit. Their voices filled the air with a cacophony of sound, and Koa covered his ears. A few officers were desperately trying to calm the crowds with little luck, and between the dull backup lights and the roar of the crowds, no one was really listening. Screams erupted from the people near the exit.
    "Get the kids!" a young woman screamed.
    "Move!" Koa shouted, barreling through the crowds and pushing people aside.
    "Sir please-" an officer began. He ignored the words, brushing past and plunging into the crowds. After a great deal of jostling and shoving, he broke free and staggered out of Oreburgh museum, his heart beating wildly in his chest. He looked left and right, before shouts of surprise drew his attention farther down the street, to his right. Tyrunt stormed down the street in a wild rush, in the direction of the north gate. Koa bolted after it, shouting for it to stop.
    Weaving through the streets, he followed as best as he could, although he nearly lost sight of it twice, and it was running faster than him. The only thing that prevented him from losing sight of it entirely was the fact that it would stop every so often as it tried to figure out where to go. As the western wall of the city drew near, Tyrunt swerved sharply north, straight for the gate. Which unfortunately, was wide open, since it was during a busy hour of the day, and Route 207 was relatively peaceful.
    Tyrunt made it through the gates long before he could even cry out for the guards to close them. Steeling himself, he continued through the gate. At the very least, it was out of the city now, and hopefully out of danger. As he ascended the rocky slope outside town however, he quickly lost sight of the Pokémon. At the top, he stopped, looking all around. His breath came in short gasps, and his limbs ached, but he couldn't give in his right, a rocky valley extended, and he could just make out one of the many entrances to the inner caves of Mt. Coronet. Ahead, tall grass and trees spread evenly before him, before sloping downwards, forming a valley, over which Cycling Road ran. Considering the speed at which Tyrunt had been running, and its head start, it could easily be long gone.
    For a moment, Koa feared that he'd lost the Tyrunt for good, when he spotted footprints heading north. The ground sloped sharply down, and Koa could see the remnants of an old path that followed underneath Cycling Road. In the softer parts of the ground, he could just make out more of Tyrunt's footprints, following the path.
    Immediately, Koa broke into a run, but he was forced to slow only a few minutes later. He wasn't sure how far away Tyrunt was, and he didn't want to expend all his energy. For several minutes he kept a steady jog through the valley. The deeper he got, the more the noises of Cycling Road grew distant, and the harder it became to spot the footprints. He began to see more wild Pokémon as well-several bird Pokémon out hunting, and the musical tones of Kricketunes and Kricketots calling to one another. He even saw a few Stunky glaring at him from the bushes, but he ignored them. The tree dotting the slopes became thicker and more dense, and he only saw more and more wild Pokémon. He longed for his backpack, with his armor inside. No time for regrets now. At least he had his Pokémon.
    As he crested a slight rise in the ground, he spotted a herd of Rapidash and Ponyta. grazing at the base of the hill, several yards ahead and below. Past them, some distance ahead, he could just make out the entrance of Wayward cave. At first glance, he thought the herd small, but the longer he looked, the more he saw, scattered all about, some in the trees and some in the open. There had to be at least fifty. A small movement in the woods just east of the herd caught his attention. Tyrunt crouched downwind of a Ponyta who had wandered away from the herd.
    The sight filled Koa with fear. Alone, he had no doubt a rock and dragon type like Tyrunt could take down a Ponyta, and likely even a Rapidash. But against a herd? They could kill it. And probably would too.
    Barely had he processed what he was seeing when Tyrunt emerged from the wood, running straight for the Ponyta. Almost instantly, the entire herd stopped eating, their heads jerking up as they stood erect. A loud neigh echoed through the valley, and herd split. Most raced away, heading into the woods to the west, although a group of three Rapidash stayed behind. The strongest of the herd he guessed, judging by size. The Ponyta sprang away, racing after the rest of the herd. Tyrunt gave chase, then stopped short as one of the Rapidash blocked its path.
    Koa held his breath and began to edge down the slope towards Tyrunt. Maybe, if Tyrunt surrendered and backed down, the Rapidash might let it leave. His hopes were dashed seconds later when Tyrunt roared and leaped for the Rapidash's throat. He kicked out hard with his front hooves, striking Tyrunt hard and knocking it back.
    Koa let out a yell and charged down the hill towards the group. All three Rapidash turned away from Tyrunt for a moment, then one moved towards him and reared up, neighing threateningly. Koa didn't slow, and much to his horror and frustration, the attack had only made Tyrunt angrier. It charged at the Rapidash again.
    The Rapidash's mane flared up, and his body became wreathed in flame. He charged at Tyrunt, overwhelming it with sheer power and sending it flying into a tree.
    However, Koa no longer had time to concentrate on Tyrunt. He was nearly at the base of the hill now, and the other Rapidash was only a few yards away. It lowered its head and charged.
    Koa stopped and jumped sideways, but the Rapidash moved much faster than he was ready for. Pain exploded across his torso as it collided with his body. The impact knocked him down hard, and he crashed into the ground. There was a frightening crunching noise as he rolled over and stopped. A moan escaped him and he lay still for a few seconds, trying to collect himself. His senses felt dulled, and the world seemed distant. The pained cries of Tyrunt however, drew him out of his stupor. He staggered to his feet and reached for his pokeballs, cursing himself for not using his Pokémon earlier. Instead of smooth round spheres, his hands met three cracked pokeballs. He jerked away his hand back, looking down in horror. All three pokeballs had cracks webbing them and running through the button on front, as well as chips in a several areas where the inner casing could be seen.
    A sick feeling churned in his stomach. The opening mechanisms were ruined. His Pokémon would be fine, after a trip to a Pokéball repair shop, but with them in such a state, it would be impossible for his Pokémon to leave their pokeballs. Tyrunt screamed in pain and Koa looked up.
    The fossil Pokémon lay some distance away, near the base of a large boulder. A web of cracks showed where Tyrunt had been knocked into it, and the three Rapidash stood just a few yards away, glaring at its nearly motionless form. Tyrunt itself was bleeding from several scratches and burns, and a deep gash ran from its shoulder down its side. Still, Tyrunt stood and snarled weakly.
    The lead Rapidash neighed defiantly and stamped his hoof. Koa drew a shuddering breath. It was preparing to charge. In Tyrunt's state, such an attack could kill it.
    "Get away!" he shouted, charging forwards. He lunged for Tyrunt, wrapping his arms around it and struggling to lift it and pull it out of the way. Unfortunately, it was extremely heavy, and before he had even stood up fully, he felt the Rapidash crash into him. Heat seared across his back and the force threw him forward, his head smacking the boulder. A brief burst of pain shot through his skull and he slumped beside Tyrunt, unconscious, blood trickling from a gash on his forehead.

    Wild Pokémon are dangerous. So very dangerous.
    At any rate, I decided to include something I saw in the manga that I liked a lot. Pokeballs can crack, breaking the opening mechanism, and preventing the trainer from using his Pokémon until he gets them repaired.
    There's usually shops in every town for this, as professors and sometimes different nurses may be trained in this. That is also where different balls come in (at least part of it.). Great balls and ultra balls are more expensive, but much sturdier. Pokeballs are fine for the average trainer, but you probably need something durable if you plan on venturing into the wilderness.
    Also, its easy to see say, an Onix as dangerous or Drapion or Weavile or something, but I decided to go with something a bit different and go with Rapidash. If you've ever been around horses, then you know they are both beautiful, and very dangerous. Not to mention one that can breathe fire and has a horn on its head? Yeah, you better be careful.
    I hope you all enjoyed, please review/constructive criticism/thoughts etc. I love hearing from my readers, and I will be replying to reviews! And don't be afraid to ask questions!
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  2. plainsight

    Jan 4, 2015
    I've read up to chapter three and I plan on reading the rest later. I just wanted you to know that this is an awesome fanfic and really well written :)
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    Flyg0n likes this.
  3. Flyg0n

    Flyg0n PKMN Breeder

    Level 33
    May 2, 2016
    [SIZE=14.6667px]At last, chapter 5! This chapter became very hard to write after the first few paragraphs. I really had to fight to get this out. But I think in the end it came out good. Its also much longer than any other chapter I've written, clocking it at about 8k words. I'm quite proud of that. Kinda of makes up for how short the last chapter was.[/SIZE]

    [SIZE=14.6667px]Now, to see how Koa is faring after his disastrous encounter with the Rapidash...[/SIZE]

    • [SIZE=14.6667px]King (Male Nidorino){Ability: Poison Point}-Confusion, Peck, Double Kick, Poison Sting[/SIZE]

    • [SIZE=14.6667px]Echo (Male Golbat) {Ability: Inner Focus}-Supersonic, Leech Life, Bite, Wing Attack[/SIZE]

    • [SIZE=14.6667px]Tyrogue {Ability: Guts} -Tackle, Mach Punch, Foresight, Fake Out[/SIZE]

    [SIZE=14.6667px]The sound of distant murmurings and faint but steady beeping brushed the edge of Koa's consciousness. Part of him felt weary and groggy, and he longed to simply roll over and slip into the comfortable darkness again. But with noise, came awareness, and with awareness, pain. As he shifted, hoping to fall asleep once more, a powerful, throbbing pain thundered through his skull. He took in a sharp breath, and a tight pain clenched around his chest. Slowly, gently, he breathed out again, then in. Each breath sent new threads of pain flaring through his body, so he tried to lie still as possible.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]The sounds around him grew more distinct, separation into mechanical and human noises, as well as Pokémon. The dull murmur of voices blended with faint beeping. With great care, he forced his eyes open. Dull, soft yellow light filled his vision, along with a mess of blurred shapes. He blinked a few times, until his vision cleared somewhat and he was able to distinguish his surroundings. Plain white ceiling and walls, spotless pale blue floors, and an odd machine with a display screen by his bedside. Crisp, stiff white sheets were draped over his body. His mind fumbled for the word. A few seconds later, it came to him. Hospital. He was at a hospital.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Koa turned his head and immediately regretted it when the throbbing increased. To his right lay an open curtain around his bed and past that, a closed doorway. Through a small window in the door, nurses occasionally walked by, sometimes with a Pokémon. He glanced to his right, moving his head little as possible. A window in the wall provided a view to the outside, although blinds blocked out all but a few slim tendrils of bright light. Was it day out? How long had he been here? And why was he in a hospital?[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Biting his lip, Koa thought back as far as he could. He'd beaten Roark, then followed him to Oreburgh museum for something... Right. His fossil. He'd gone to have the Jaw Fossil he found revived. With that revelation came the memory of entering the revival room, and handing his fossil over to a scientist named Jared. Beyond that however, he remembered nothing. He let out a slow sigh, and shifted slightly in the bed. For the first time, he became aware of bandages covering his back. Their was distant, itchy pain, but it didn't bother him nearly so much as his headache or sore torso. Maybe he'd been in an accident of some kind? And where were his Pokémon? There was no sign of them or their pokeballs.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"Hey!" His voice came out in a dry croak, and he licked his lips and swallowed. "Hey? Anyone there?" Irritation festered in him. He was thirsty, hungry, and generally confused. He wanted proper clothes, and he missed his Pokémon.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Just as he was about to get up and try to find someone, the door opened with a faint squeak. A figure walked in, although Koa found it difficult to make out their features due to his blurred vision. As he drew nearer to the bed, Koa got a closer look. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]The figure was a young woman with wavy red hair tied into twin buns on top of her head. She looked to be around 30. A pair of sport sunglasses were perched on her head, and she wore a traditional white doctor's coat with a red cross stitched on the chest. Her frame seemed oddly muscular for a doctor, but the thought was quickly pushed aside in favor of questions.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"Why am I in a hospital?" was his first.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"Please, relax. My name is Maria, and I'm a neurological expert at the hospital." she said. Her voice was gentle and a bit high pitched. She spoke with a slight accent, but he couldn't remember where he'd heard it. Definitely not native to Sinnoh though. "I'll answer your question, but first I have to ask you a few questions. What is your name?"[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"Koamaru Averon," he replied, squelching his frustration.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"Good. And are you a boy or a girl?"[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"What?" he exploded. "What kinda question is that?"[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]She laughed, almost doubling over. "Just kidding," she said, smiling brightly. In a more serious tone, she continued. "Who is the current leader of Sinnoh, and Champion?"[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"Hah. That's easy. Cynthia."[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"What are the three basic elemental types?"[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"Fire, water, grass. Are we done yet?"[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"Soon. How old are you?"[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]She nodded and wrote something on a clipboard in her hand. "And what is today's date?"[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]After a few seconds consideration, he shrugged painfully. "June? I think?"[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"Close enough. Don't worry, I don't expect you to know the exact date. I just wanted to assess your condition."[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"Now will you tell me why I'm here? And where are my Pokémon?"[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"Your Pokémon are all fine."[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Koa breathed a sigh of relief. One less thing to worry about. "Where are they then? And what happened to me?"[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"Your Pokémon are downstairs in the Pokémon Wing of this hospital. We would have taken them to the Pokémon Center, but once we repaired their pokeballs, they wouldn't go far."[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"Repaired their pokeballs?"[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"You were attacked by wild Rapidash and their pokeballs were cracked during the fight."[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]At her words, memories surfaced. The sound of a Pokémon screaming in pain. A Rapidash charging at him. Burning pain and something crashing into him. Running, trying to catch something. The memories were more like snapshots then a full memory, but now he could get a general idea of what happened. An image formed in his mind of seeing Rapidash surrounding an injured Pokémon, preparing to charge. His Pokémon. The Tyrunt he'd had revived. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"My Tyrunt!" he cried, sitting bolt upright, ignoring the burning pain flaring through through his body. A wave of dizziness swept over him and darkness swirled across his vision.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Maria stepped forward, placing a hand on his shoulder. "Calm down, or you'll make yourself worse. The Tyrunt is fine, luckily. It'll be a day or two before she's properly healed, but otherwise, she will make a full recovery. I didn't realize she belonged to you."[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"Yeah uh, I was at Oreburgh Museum to revive her fossil..." his voice trailed off as he pondered what Maria had said. "She? My Tyrunt is female?"[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Maria nodded. "Also, once you feel up to it, the local police would like to talk to you."[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"Police? What for? I didn't do anything." he protested. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"Of course, you wouldn't remember. The museum was robbed. Several fossils were stolen, among other items. The police and Roark have been speaking to witnesses for the past two days."[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"I've been asleep two days?" Koa yelped. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"Not quite." Maria shook her head. "I had the nurses keep you sedated for the first twelve hours, to give your body time to heal. You were semi-conscious a few times after that, but you didn't awake until just now. You'll be fine, though I imagine that Rapidash will leave you with a bit of a scar. If that's all, I'll leave you to rest. You should be able to leave tomorrow perhaps, once your wounds heal more."[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Koa slowly lay back down in bed, a sudden weariness overtaking him. His anger dissipated, replaced by exhaustion. His Pokémon were safe, as was Tyrunt, and he was alive. That was enough for now. His eyes closed, and he drifted off to sleep. The rest of the day passed by in a bit of a daze. The nurses brought him a bit of a late lunch, which he nibbled at. After lunch, sleep utterly evaded him, so he watched TV. For a few minutes, he watched The National Sinnoh News. There were an assortment of reports, ranging from swarms of Pokémon to weather and traffic reports. There was a special on the christening of a new cruise ship, the S.S. Blackbird. He changed channels, stopping on Oreburgh Local News. A reporter stood in front of the museum, talking. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"...ago, the Oreburgh Museum, known for its impressive coal exhibit and fossil revival capabilities, was robbed. According to local Gym Leader Roark, who was on the premises at the time, the police are working diligently to recover the stolen items, which range from fossils to rare gems and other priceless artifacts. Police are still investigating possible suspects, and have declined to comment so far. In other news..." he changed channels until he settled on an old cop show he used to watch.. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]At some point, he dozed off, an awoke when a nurse came in to take his dinner order. None of the orders sounded appetizing, and he was forced to settle for a burger and some sort of berry dessert. When his meal came, he picked at it, barely eating half. His stomach felt queasy, and his back burned. He wondered where Blake was, or if anyone told him what happened. When Maria came back, he'd ask her. As the night dragged on, and good tv became scarcer, he found it hard to sleep. The bed wasn't particularly comfortable, and he always felt slightly too hot or slightly too cold. Finally, sometime after midnight, sheer exhaustion won out, and he drifted into fitful sleep.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]After breakfast, Maria came back to check on him. She told him that Blake had been informed, but had yet to actually show up at the hospital. When he begged to see his Pokémon, she refused, insisting he wasn't allowed until after he'd recovered. Then he was forced to take some more tests, which he grudgingly did. Afterwards, he took a walk down the hospital hallways before returning to his room. As he wandered past other rooms and saw people visiting or nurses with Pokémon, he only felt more lonely, so he returned to his room. He had just begun to doze off when the sound of the door squeaking and footsteps awoke him. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Koa opened his eyes and glanced toward the door. Blake stood there, staring at him. For a moment, his cousin didn't say anything. He stood, staring, his posture stiff. Then he clenched his fists, striding towards the bed. "What were you thinking? No, forget that, clearly you weren't thinking! Stop rushing into things. Be smart, use the armor I got for you! This isn't a game, Koa. You could have been killed."[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Anger bubbled up inside Koa, and he glared at his cousin. "What did you expect me to do, let my Pokémon die? I had to do something, or my Tyrunt could have been killed! Besides, I'm not dead. Who cares what could have happened? Whatever happened, happened. Stop making mountains out of Drilbur holes!"[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"How can you be so..." he shook his hand in the air in frustration. "-stupid! Next time you might not be so lucky."[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Koa's scowl deepened. "Geez, if you just came here to complain and shout at me, why even come? Just go back to your research like you always do." He clenched his jaw and turned away from Blake, at least as much as he could without causing himself too much pain. Tears began to form in his eyes, and he forced himself not to blink or let Blake see how upset he was. His old bitterness resurfaced. He'd been in here three days, and Blake only just now visited him? He probably shouldn't be this surprised. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]A tense silence hung over the room, broken only by the beep of the machines, and Blake's heavy breathing. "I'm sorry Koa. I was just-"[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"I don't want to hear it." Koa snapped. "I'm tired. Let me rest." [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Blake gave a long sigh, then walked out of the room. Wiping his eyes with his arm, Koa blinked several times. [/SIZE][SIZE=14.6667px]Pull yourself together[/SIZE][SIZE=14.6667px]. He pushed aside his bitterness and focused on thinking about his Pokémon, and where he would go next. Hearthome seemed like it was the next logical choice, although it was far away, and would require a hike across Mt. Coronet. Of course, there was the option of taking one of the buses to Hearthome, but that left no room for training, exploring, or much sight seeing. Maybe he could join one of the hiking groups that regularly crossed the mountains? Nah. Better to take his own path. Soon, he fell asleep, dreaming of wandering the mountains and seeing legendary Pokémon.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]The next time someone came into his room, it was Maria. "Good news Koamaru. All your tests came back fine, so you can leave today. If you would like, you can change into your regular clothes and we'll get you checked out.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]A half hour later, he'd changed, signed all the necessary papers, and was on his way to the Pokémon Wing. The Pokémon Wing consisted of a large glass dome, connected to the hospital by a hallway. Inside was a sort of green house, with a miniature lush forest. Two smaller sections had also been created for different types, such as a cooler indoor spot for ice types, a tank for water types, and a warm sandy area for Pokémon who preferred heat. The entire area was sectioned off, and attendants and nurses moved about, playing with the Pokémon or tending to injuries. He stepped inside the fence.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]A loud screech echoed through the enclosure and something crashed into Koa. He staggered back and grunted. Opening his eyes, he saw it was Echo, who had wrapped his small talons tightly on Koa's shoulder, clinging on. He rubbed his head. "I missed you too Echo."[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]A moment later, King bounded over to him, nuzzling him. He ran his hands across his head and rubbed between his ears. One of the attendants, a middle aged woman, quirked her eyebrow at him. "You must be his trainer. That Nidoran hasn't let anyone touch him the past three days."[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Koa smiled. "Sounds like King alright. He's not very affectionate to most people. Is Tyrogue here?"[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]The woman nodded towards the far side of the building. A Tyrogue and a Machop were having a heated wrestling match. Koa watched with interest as the two Pokémon rolled about in the grass. The Machop was a bit bigger and stronger, but Tyrogue wasn't giving up. With a neat flip, he tossed the Machop to the ground, using his body as leverage. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"Good job Tyrogue!" he called. Tyrogue turned to him, then raised his fist in the air, shouting in victory. He strode over to him, and Koa reached to pet him, but he turned away. Koa shrugged. "Nice fighting." Tyrogue nodded appreciatively.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"Obviously you're Koamaru Averon? Maria said you'd be stopping by. These are their pokeballs. They've been repaired, but be careful. You might want to consider investing in Great balls." The attendant handed him three pokeballs. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Koa nodded as he took them from her. "Yeah yeah. Where's my Tyrunt?" he asked excitedly. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"Right. Follow me." The attendant said. She led him to a smaller building, consisting mostly of a hallway with rooms lining it. Large windows allowed a view into each room. She stopped in front of the first one. Through the window, he spotted Tyrunt curled up on a small bed. Her eyes were closed and her sides rose and fell steadily. All the wounds from the Rapidash seemed to have healed fine, which didn't surprise him, since Pokémon were fast healers. However, a long scar ran from her neck, across her shoulder and nearly to her hindlegs. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"The scar was a very serious wound, and it couldn't heal on its own. She may have it forever. Other than that, she has been healing well. We gave her sedatives to keep her calm, and all her wounds have healed. You're free to take her home." [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Koa grimaced. If only he'd acted sooner, or just used his Pokémon, Tyrunt might not have a scar... he quickly shrugged it off. No sense dwelling on the past. "Great, thanks. Does she have a Pokéball?" The attendant nodded and stepped inside the room. She took an odd looking Pokéball from a case near the bed and pressed a button, returning Tyrunt. She stepped out of the room and handed him the ball. Koa examined it closer. It was dark brown, almost black in color, ringed by a black line around the center. The front sported a golden helix shape. He recognized it as a helix fossil. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"What's this?"[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"A new Pokéball Roark and his team engineered. A Fossil ball. Designed to help fossil Pokémon feel safe and comfortable, and easy to capture."[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"Cool!" he clipped the ball to his belt. After bidding the attendant farewell, he hurried out of the hospital, quite eager to leave. He didn't bother returning hi Pokémon to their balls either. They seemed to miss him, and the feeling was mutual. As he strolled through the city, heading to small part just outside the southern edge, King strolled close beside him. Echo flew in happy loops above his head, while Tyrogue followed behind. Tyrunt however, he kept in its Pokéball. Better to get somewhere away from the crowds and noise, just in case. He headed to a secluded spot on the outside edge of the city, a clearing surrounded by sparse woods.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"Alright everyone. Make sure you give Tyrunt her space. I don't want her to feel threatened or nervous."[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]His Pokémon all moved back several paces, and Echo perched a few feet away. By this point, Koa's excitement was boiling over, and he couldn't contain himself any longer. Unclipping the Fossil Ball from his belt, he tossed it dramatically into the air, releasing Tyrunt.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]She lay curled in the same position he'd last seen her, her tail wrapped around her body, almost touching her snout and her legs tucked underneath her. Gleaming black eyes flicked open, and she sprang to her feet, scanning her surroundings. A low growl rumbled in her throat, and she bared her teeth.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Koa reached towards her. "Hey, calm down. My name is-"[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]She roared and lunged at him. He yanked his hand back, narrowly missing getting bitten. King moved forwards, but Koa motioned for him to stay back before turning to Tyrunt. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"Whoa relax! I'm not trying to hurt you. I want to be friends." He held out his hand again, but she snapped her jaws threateningly, glaring at him. Koa frowned and sat back, then retrieved a pouch of jerky. He tossed a piece to Tyrunt. She glared at him, then the jerky. She took one sniff, then stepped on, crushing it beneath her powerful hindlegs. Koa gasped, then sighed. He remembered reading that Tyrunt's were powerful, independent Pokémon, but he'd figured after saving its life they would get along fine. Clearly this would take longer than he thought. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]The next couple hours dragged by. Koa tried everything he could think of. He tried to talk calmly and approach slow, but he couldn't even take more than a couple steps. He tried food, but Tyrunt never ate any. He even tried to battle Tyrunt, which although it seemed pretty tough, did nothing in the end except make it angry. He did, however, discover that it knew Stealth Rock, Bite, Stomp and Tail Whip. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Eventually, he gave up. He returned Tyrunt to her Pokéball. Surprisingly, she made no attempt to leave. Returning the rest of his Pokémon, he trudged back into Oreburgh, puzzling over what to do next. He needed to befriend Tyrunt.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]A voice distracted Koa from his thought and he looked up to see Roark jogging towards him. "I've been looking for you all day, ever since Maria said they released you from the hospital. Are you alright?"[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Koa nodded.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"Glad to hear it. I need to speak to you about the museum robbery."[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Mentally slapping himself for forgetting, Koa asked, "What about it?"[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"Did you see anything?" Roark asked, his tone brisk. "Those thieves are the reason that my revival machine is ruined! Didn't you see anything? Someone suspicious or someone trying to leave the scene?"[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Koa bit back a sarcastic response and shook his head. Roark appeared tired and stressed. Clearly the robbery was getting to him. "No. It was pretty much panic upstairs. And I was just trying to catch Tyrunt."[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"Of course." Roark hung his head. "Forgive me, Koa, I shouldn't have been so blunt. It's just, this is my first major incident as gym leader, and I don't think I'm doing a good job. I'm supposed to be the leader of this town too, but I feel like I'm failing everyone. Perhaps my father made a mistake leaving the gym to me."[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"No way!" Koa said. "It's only been a few days. People can't expect you to solve this in a few days, that's ridiculous."[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"True I suppose." Roark said. "At any rate, how is Tyrunt?"[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"Fine. We're still working on training and stuff." he lied. He didn't want to admit how terribly it was going to Roark. Besides, it wasn't as if Roark could do anything. Even if he could, he had plenty enough to worry about.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"Glad to hear it. I'll let the police know that you didn't see anything. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"What have they found so far?" Koa asked. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"Well..." Roark sighed and ran a hand through his hair. "Not much yet. The security tapes were damaged, so the tech teams have been working on restoring them. They're supposed to be reviewing the files today and looking for anything. Speaking of, I'd better go. Chief Lunesse is expecting me."[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"I want to come." Koa declared. These thieves were the reason Tyrunt had been scared and gotten hurt, and he wanted revenge for that.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Roark shook his head. "Sorry, but I can't let you. I'm really not supposed to be sharing anything. Even the things I just told you have to be kept confidential."[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Koa growled in frustration. "So what if you tell me? Maybe I can help!"[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"The answer is still no. And I have to go. Good luck with your quest." He turned and hurriedly strode away.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]It took a great deal of self control not to stamp his foot in anger. No need to look like a foolish child. Koa watched him leave, then frowned in thought. He needed to find out more information. And he needed to prepare for his trip to Hearthome. The first item he wasn't sure how to complete, but the second he did. Legend Avenue was lined with shops that sold everything from traveling gear to Pokémon food and human food. He could buy everything he needed to trek across the mountains to Hearthome.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Turning on his heel, he raced around the corner, and crashed into someone. Instinctively, he muttered an apology. A young girl stood in front of him, about his age. She wore black pants and shirt, dark blue boots and a dark blue vest. Her dark red hair was tucked under a navy blue cap. Upon closer inspection, he recognized it as the uniform of a Pokémon Ranger, except instead of red it appeared to be dyed blue. In a couple spots, he could still see faint glimpses of red. Brushing her clothes off, she looked up, her dark green eyes widening in surprise and recognition. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]He muttered an apology and kept walking, but she moved in front of him. "Wait. You're Koamaru, right?" She spoke with a commanding tone, but she didn't sound harsh, just direct. Coupled with her warm smile, it made her seem friendly. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Koa stopped and stared at her, narrowing his eyes. "How do you know my name?"[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"I'm investigator. Or at least, training to be one. It's my job to know things. Name is Alizarin by the way. I've been looking into this museum robbery. I was nearby when it happened, and I saw you running out of the museum." She frowned and tilted her head, as if studying him. "Do you know anything?"[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Koa sighed and shook his head. "No." He stepped around her walked faster. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]She jogged beside him then cut in front of him and walking backwards and facing him. "Are you sure? Perhaps-"[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"I was busy with other things than trying to find criminals. And I didn't even know that the museum had been robbed. Is that good enough for you?" He brushed by her, but he could still hear her following him.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"Very well then. What was Roark talking to you about?"[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Whirling around, Koa glared at her. "You were eavesdropping?"[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Alizarin shook her head. "No, obviously. I just saw you two talking. I wasn't even close enough to hear what you said. That's why I'm asking. What was he saying?"[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Heat rose to Koa's cheeks and he tried to hide his embarrassment. "Nothing I'm going to tell you."[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Her eyebrows arched and she eyed him. "If you tell me, I'll let you in on what I know."[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Koa started to refuse, then hesitated. Roark probably wouldn't tell him anything, and he doubted anyone in the police force would either. This could be his best chance. Or a trick. Well, there wouldn't be much harm done if it was a trick. "Fine." He crossed his arms. "Roark wanted to know if I saw anything. Which I didn't." he emphasized the word didn't. "And he said that security footage was damaged, but they were working on restoring it. He just left to go review it with Chief Lunesse."[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"Interesting... From what I've found, it seems like a similar MO to other crimes all over western Sinnoh."[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"You mean it's not local?"[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]She shook her head. "Recently, over the past few months, there's been several small break ins at local shops around the mainland. There's also been muggings during the night, on several routes. Witnesses all give the same description. Men in all black clothing, wearing black masks and capes. They move quietly and strike hard and fast. Many use Pokémon as well, and the Pokémon are often painted dark colors to blend in. They usually steal anything valuable-money, art, jewels and such. A few different police offices have recently begun speculating that it's not copycats, but a single organization. Jubilife Police dubbed them Team Blackout."[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"Team Blackout..." he said thoughtfully. He almost hoped one of them would try to mug him sometime. He'd give them a run for their money. He made a mental note of the name. An awkward silence fell between them. Or at least, Koa thought it felt awkward. Alizarin glanced at her poketch. "I'd better go. I have other tasks to accomplish. Oh! I nearly forgot. We should battle sometime."[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]He gave her a dubious look. "You don't even have any pokeballs." [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]A mischievous glint twinkled in her eyes "First rule of investigating, never underestimate people." She gave him a friendly smile before turning and striding away. He watched her for a moment, then turned his thoughts to preparations for his journey. In a few minutes, he had reached Legend Avenue. Many of the shops on this street were named for legendary Pokémon, particularly those of Sinnoh mythology. Cresselia Bakery, New Moon Clothing, Shaymart and many other stores made up the entirety of the street.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]The next few hours were spent browsing through the stores and stocking up on items. He still had some money, around 10,000 poke, and he spent it on medical supplies, poke repellent, rope and food. Finally, satisfied that he had enough for the journey, he used his last couple hundred to rent a cheap room at a place called 'Mythic Hotel'. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]The establishment was a bit rundown, but he didn't have money for anything nicer. The bed was rather lumpy, but more than good enough for the night. He released his Pokémon, save for Tyrunt, and brought out some of the food he bought, giving it to them. As they ate, he turned on the tv, but kept the volume down. Then he sent out Tyrunt.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"Look Tyrunt-"[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]She growled at him, showing her jaws. He edged closer anyway, holding out his hand with food in it.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"Stop being so stupid!" Koa snapped, his voice growing loud. "I saved your life for Arceus sake!" [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Tyrunt roared so loud Koa felt the vibration in his body. Quickly, he returned her to her Pokéball. Less than a minute later, there was knock on his door. Reluctantly, he answered it. He recognized the man standing in the doorway as the hotel manager, who helped check him into his room.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"We have a very strict noise policy Mr. Averon. If it happens again, I will have to ask you to leave."[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Grinding his teeth together in frustration, he nodded and mumbled, "Sorry sir." The manager nodded and walked away. Koa closed the door, just short of slamming it shut. He flopped down on his bed and groaned. "I don't get it, King. I keep trying everything I know to befriend Tyrunt. Nothing is working." He looked down at the Nidorino, who lay on the floor resting. King blinked slowly at him, then grunted and shook his head.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"What?" he asked. It almost seemed as if he knew what was up, but didn't want to say anything. "Just tell me how to befriend him." he pleaded. King closed his eyes and settled into a sleeping position. Koamaru huffed. "Fine. I'll just have to figure it out." Maybe tomorrow he could call professor Rowan, or visit the library. There had to be more information about Tyrunt. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]His gaze drifted to his other two Pokémon-Tyrogue stood in the middle of the room, throwing punches and kicks; practicing his form. Echo was staring raptly at the tv, apparently fascinated by... he stared at the tv, trying to figure out what show was on. After a few seconds, he recognized it as a show about a man who dressed as a Crobat and fought crime.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Leaving Golbat to watch the show, he showered and changed into pajamas. When he got out, Tyrogue was still training, but King was fast asleep, as was Echo, who had fallen asleep watching tv. He crawled into bed and pulled the scratchy covers around himself. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"Tyrogue, you should get some rest," he said with a yawn. Tyrogue grunted but kept training. Koa turned over and shrugged. "Suit yourself," he mumbled. He closed his eyes, drifting off to sleep. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]The next morning, he was rather rudely awoken even earlier than usual when something jabbed him in the stomach. He groaned and cracked open his eyes to see Tyrogue standing on the bed beside him. He gave a demanding cry, and Koa groaned again. Wearily, he peered at his poketch. 5:53am.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"What is it Tyrogue? It's not time to get up yet."[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Tyrogue jabbed him again, and Koa curled up reflexively and shot him a reproachful look. Finally, his mind started to catch up with his body, and he recalled that Tyrogue often liked to train early in the morning. Very early. There was a good reason a lot of beginner trainers didn't have them. With a long sigh, he rolled out of bed. Still half asleep, he staggered to the bathroom to wash and change, dressing in comfortable shorts, a t shirt, and his favorite red leather jacket. Feeling slightly more awake, he woke King and Echo. A few minutes later, they were all ready to go.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Koa started at a fast but steady jog, going in a roundabout circle through the city. The sun was just starting to rise, and he could catch occasional glimpses of it between the buildings. A few shopkeepers were out, setting up for the morning, and he even passed by some other joggers, or people heading to working. After just a couple minutes, he began to feel more awake. The morning air was cool, and breeze blew, keeping him cool.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]The exercise gave him a chance to ponder the issue of Tyrunt as he jogged. Once more, he reviewed everything he knew about capturing Pokémon.When it came to wild Pokémon, there were usually two methods-befriending, or battle. You could befriend a Pokémon with food or affection, or even assist it some way. Or you could battle it and use a ball to capture it. With the latter, wild Pokémon tended to respect the concept of capture and accompany the trainer, although just as many could be very disobedient. Yet Tyrunt had not responded to either method. He'd tried every technique he could think of too. Yet every attempt to befriend her had failed.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Koa stopped dead in his tracks, a sudden realization hitting him. That was just it! How had he not seen it before? The solution, and problem, seemed clear as day now. "This whole time, I've just been trying to force Tyrunt to be friends with me. Instead of respecting her space, I just kept pushing. I should let her come to me when she's ready."[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]King grunted in approval and Koa glanced down at him with a frown. "You knew this whole time, didn't you?"[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]King shrugged and grunted. "I guess you wanted me to figure it out." Koa smiled and shook his head. He reached to his belt clip and took off Tyrunt's Pokéball, releasing her. This time, he said nothing and simply started jogging away. He looked back once and saw her walking after him. A minute later, he glanced back again to see her following behind him. Although she kept her distance, she seemed much less aggressive than before.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]The rest of his jog he completed in silence. King even ran alongside Tyrogue, so he guessed King let go of his grudge. Tyrunt soon started running beside him too, and didn't growl. It took all his control not to reach down and start petting her, or cheer with joy. Finally, he was making real progress.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]After nearly an hour, he returned to his room at the hotel. He'd given it considerable thought and decided to stay one more day before heading for Hearthome. He wanted to get more training done, and see if there was any news about the robbery. As it turned out, his second question was answered fairly quickly. After he'd taken a quick shower he started to get dressed, turning on the tv to Oreburgh Local News as he did.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]A red banner reading 'Breaking News' ran across the bottom of the screen, and the picture changed to a female reporter appeared on the screen, standing in front of the police department. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"There has been a new development in the case of the Oreburgh Museum robbery, which occurred three days ago. A museum employee has been arrested in connection with the robberies. Jared Henessy was arrested last night after security footage revealed he tampered with the museum security systems. Police arrested his accomplice early this morning, a man named Lane Filman. Police are still trying to recover the stolen items."[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Koa eyes widened in surprise. Jared had been responsible for this? He seemed like a decent guy, but he supposed you never could tell. At least that solved that. Which meant Alizarin had been wrong about Team Blackout. He wondered how Roark was doing. He gym leader seemed to be friends with Jared. Finding out he was responsible couldn't have been easy, especially as the leader of the town. He shrugged and turned off the tv. "Enough lounging around guys. We've got six badges to get, and things aren't going to get easier. East Sinnoh is full of stronger trainers and Pokémon." [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]It was also a wild place, much more so than west Sinnoh, which was why the biggest trainers school was in Jubilife. Not only that, but it was larger, and took more time to travel through. After what happened with the Rapidash, he wanted to get stronger before he tried to cross the mountains. But first he head to plan. He walked to a little diner next door and pondered what to do next as he ate. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Now that Tyrunt was warming up to him slowly, he wanted to try working with her. And he wanted to nickname her. Tyrogue need more work too. King and Echo he knew fairly well, but he only battled with Tyrogue twice. Even though he'd won the second time, he wasn't very familiar with him. Maybe he could work on new moves for his Pokémon. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]After lunch he headed for the Pokémon center and used the PC to look up some information on his Pokémon. Much to his dismay, Tyrogue couldn't learn any moves naturally until he evolved, or if he used a TM. Still, he could work on strength and stamina. Next up was Echo. He considered Air Cutter, then decided against it. Golbat tended to excel at physical attacks, not special attacks. He scanned the list of known moves for Golbat and paused on a particular one. Poison Fang. Confuse Ray caught his eye as well. Supersonic hand a tendency to be very inaccurate at times, but Confuse Ray was easier to aim and more likely to hit, especially at longer distances. Finally, he looked up Tyrunt. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Being Rock and Dragon, it had a fair amount of weaknesses, but possessed incredible attack power and a fair amount of speed as well. At this stage, it didn't learn many more good moves, save for Dragon Claw, but that required a huge amount of training to achieve. Dragon Tail seemed like a reasonable goal. He could have her forget about Tail Whip and instead try for Dragon Tail. Plus, Dragon Tail had a chance of knocking a Pokémon back to its trainers Pokéball. No telling when he might need that, especially against a tough enemy. He turned to his Pokémon, who were standing beside him. "So we'll work on Dragon Tail for Tyrunt, and Poison Fang and Confuse Ray for you, Echo."[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Echo chirped eagerly. Tyrunt eyed him for a second, then nodded. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"King, Tyrogue, you'll have to help with sparring." With a clear goal in mind, he headed for the training grounds behind the Pokémon Center. For the next several hours, he trained alongside his Pokémon, pausing to rest when needed, though not for long. He started with Echo and after a bit, Tyrunt soon joined in of her own accord, much to his delight. Clearly all she needed was some space and time to on her own. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Finally, as the sun was close to setting, he decided to call it a day. His muscles burned, and he felt completely wiped, yet proud. Echo had completely mastered the use of Confuse Ray, and had a good handle on Poison Fang, though he'd had to give up Leech Life. Tyrunt had taken longer, but now could use a full powered Dragon Tail. The move itself was still a bit weak, but it would do until she was strong enough to use Dragon Claw. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]After a check up and restore at the Pokémon Center, he started to head for his hotel. He hadn't made it far when a Starly swooped down and hovered in front of him. Thanks to the copper medallion around its neck, he recognized it as one of Rowan's Starly's who he trained to carry messages for him. Holding out his hand, Starly alighted on it, and Koa carefully removed a piece of paper from a pouch around its neck. The message was short, and read: "Please contact me ASAP."[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]What could Rowan want? Curiosity burned inside him, and he hurried back to the Pokémon Center, ignoring his aching muscles. He rushed over to the PC and called Professor Rowan. A few moments later, the professor's familiar gruff face appeared on the screen. "So you recieved my message. Good. Hmm... I see you're in Oreburgh?"[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Koa nodded. "I just beat Roark, and Gardenia a few days ago-"[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"I have faith you are doing excellent, Koamaru. I talked to Blake and I've decided to ask you for help with something."[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Koa swallowed when he heard his cousin's name and quickly buried his guilt. He didn't even know where Blake was right now, although he assumed his cousin was at home. Part of him felt bad about not contacting his cousin and leaving on such poor terms, but the other half of him was angry. He didn't have anything to apologize for.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"What do you need?"[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"I've been collaborating with other professors on a special project." Rowan held up a slim red device, about the size of the palm of his hand. "This is a Pokédex. We created it to be the ultimate trainers companion, especially for new trainers. With it, you can scan a Pokémon and identify it to see its species, type, and important information about it."[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Koa eyes widened. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"It also contains the same kind of information you can find my searching on a PC. Information about techniques and how Pokémon learn them. Birch also included a map that should help when exploring. I have also included one final feature. A categorization mode, designed to evaluate a Pokémon's strength and assign it a numerical value from 1-100."[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Koa gaped. This thing sounded freaking incredible. A small hope began to form in him, but he didn't want to get excited over it if it wasn't going to happen. "What do you want me to do?" he asked carefully.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"What I need you to do is test it. Scan every Pokémon you can, and fill this Pokédex with data. The idea is to create a single, centralized device for holding Pokémon information, as well as catalogue new information. Can you do that?"[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Koa grinned widely. "Heck yeah I'll accept! This sounds so cool!"[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Rowan frowned with something close to disapproval. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Koa coughed uncomfortably and added, "I would be uh, honored to accept. Thank you for thinking of me, Professor Rowan."[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]He nodded in approval. "Thank you. And you're welcome. Make sure you be very careful. There are only a few of these devices, and they took a great deal of time to make. They are not toys. And you must promise to check in at every town, to update me on your progress."[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Koa nodded quickly. "I promise, Professor Rowan."[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"Excellent. Keep an eye out for the package. I assumed you would accept, so I took the liberty of having the package sent to Oreburgh. It should arrive soon, tomorrow I believe. It is good that you are still there. I was going to ask Roark to hold it, but now you can pick it up yourself."[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"Thanks Prof!" Koa shouted. The nurse shot him a look and he glanced away. "I really appreciate this. I won't let you down."[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"Hmmm... I hope not." Rowan said sternly. "I'll talk to you soon, Koamaru."[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Koa nodded and bid the Professor farewell. As soon as he stepped outside the Pokémon center, he pumped his fist in the air and whooped. Echo screeched with him, and even King cheered. He returned to his room and showered quickly before hopping into bed. All he could think about was getting to sleep as quick as possible so tomorrow would come sooner. The Pokédex sounded amazing. If it really did everything Rowan said it would, it would be an invaluable asset. As he and his Pokémon started to doze, he was surprised to feel a sudden weight on the side of his bed. He turned to see Tyrunt curled up near the foot of the bed, her eyes closed and her chest rising and falling steadily. A smile crept across his face as he drifted off to sleep.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]The next morning he awoke before even Tyrogue had a chance to wake him. Much to Tyrogue's dismay however, he didn't bother to start the day with a run. Instead, he sprinted to the Pokémon center. Inside, a sleepy nurse greeted him. After blurting a quick hello, he inquired about the mail. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]She handed him a package and he snatched it, racing to a table. With great restraint, he opened it carefully, recalling how costly Rowan said the device was. Wrapped in a layer of packing material and bubble wrap, lay a rectangular red device. It looked exactly like the one Rowan had shown him; a red flip design with two screens. Underneath lay what seemed to be an instruction manual. A warning label read 'Please read before use'. He tossed it aside and opened the Pokédex. Instruction manuals were for losers. The screen flickered to life displaying buttons with different functions. There seemed to be three- one labeled Map, one Scan, and the other Database. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]After a moments consideration, he selected the scan mode. The lower screen displayed a blue background with a swirling gold circle, while the upper screen displayed his surroundings. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]He pointed the Pokédex at King. After a second, a picture of King appeared on the top screen and a robotic voice emanated from the device. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Nidorino. The Poison Point Pokémon. Nidorino has a horn that is harder than a diamond. If it senses a hostile presence, all the barbs on its back bristle up at once, and it challenges the foe with all its might.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]This Nidorino knows the moves: Confusion, Peck, Double Kick and Poison Sting.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]The lower screen displayed its type, known moves and more information about it. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"Sick..." Koa whispered. One by one, he scanned each of his Pokémon, saving Tyrunt for last. She eyed the machine with a mix of curiosity and wariness as he raised the machine to her. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Tyrunt. The Royal Heir Pokémon. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Tyrunt's jaws are so big and powerful, it can crunch up a car. If it becomes unhappy, it will go on an angry rampage.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]He eagerly read the information about her species. Like he already knew, they were fossil Pokémon. Interestingly enough, her species did not share its typing with any other Pokémon. He read on, making note of the kind of moves it could learn. He also took special note about its evolution-Tyrunt could only evolve during the day. Interesting. He'd remember that one.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]For the next several minutes, he continued to mess with the Pokédex and explore its features. He decided to give the level system that Rowan mentioned a shot. He scanned Tyrunt and a number appeared beside its picture. 20. Then the number changed to a 17. Each time he adjusted the Pokédex slightly, the number changed, although he seemed to stay on the low side in general. He tested it on his other Pokémon with similar results. Oh well. Even with the bugs, the machine was still incredible. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]The database section include multiple subsections filled with information, mostly about techniques, and more information on the Pokémon he'd scanned so far, which amounted to a grand total of four. After several minutes, King grunted and headbutted his leg, then jerked his head towards the door. He in resignation. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]"You're right, buddy. I said we'd leave early for Hearthome. We'd better get started." He hurried back to his room and grabbed is things, double checking his bag one last time before leaving. Twenty minutes later, he stood just outside Oreburgh's east gate, dressed in his protective gear. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]The Coronet Mountains loomed several miles ahead, some of the peaks stretching above the clouds. The sun had just begun to edge over the mountains, sending slanting beams of light glaring down. A steady breeze blew towards him, ruffling his hair. This time, he wasn't planning on taking chances. He pulled on his helmet, then started towards the mountains, mentally preparing himself for the long journey ahead.[/SIZE]

    [SIZE=14.6667px]Finally! Whew. I don't know why this chapter was so hard to finish. Anyways, a couple notes. [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Upon further thought, I guess this all does feel a bit fast, even considering the vibe I was trying to achieve, but I think it will all work out. My thought is that west Sinnoh and East Sinnoh can be quite different. Still run under the same government and such, but a different sort of vibe. Stronger gym leaders, more dangerous Pokémon, etc. I plan to try and space things out more.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Next, I got to the part I was quite excited about, introducing the Pokédex. I decided in the planning stage, I didn't want this to be like the games or anime, where the trainer gets a starter and Pokédex. I mean, if everyone got a starter there would be hundreds of them??? Plus I thought it could be neat to introduce the Pokédex later on.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]I think that about covers it.[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Please, I would love your thoughts on this chapter, and the others. What do you like? What do you want more of? Any Pokémon you want to see? Or even thoughts on Koa's team?[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=14.6667px]Constructive criticism always welcomed![/SIZE]

    [SIZE=14.6667px]On a final note, even though I try to incorporate each Pokémon's personality, I think I want to focus more on the Pokémon, and even interactions between them. I'll try for that next chapter.[/SIZE]

    • [SIZE=14.6667px]King (Male Nidorino){Ability: Poison Point}-Confusion, Peck, Double Kick, Poison Sting[/SIZE]

    • [SIZE=14.6667px]Echo (Male Golbat) {Ability: Inner Focus}- Confuse Ray, Poison Fang, Bite, Wing Attack[/SIZE]

    • [SIZE=14.6667px]Tyrogue {Ability: Guts} -Tackle, Mach Punch, Foresight, Fake Out[/SIZE]

    • [SIZE=14.6667px](Female Tyrunt) {Ability: Strong Jaw} - Bite, Dragon Tail, Stealth Rock, Stomp[/SIZE]
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