TEEN: The Burning Affliction
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    Registered User Zelo's Avatar
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    Default The Burning Affliction

    The Burning Affliction


    Welcome all! This is my first pokemon fan fiction on here and I hope you enjoy it. Comments’ containing constructive criticism is much obliged as I am forever trying to improve my writing ability. This story is rated Teen because of future events. Below will be a short blurb like summary, enjoy!


    Summary: With her pokemon journey just beginning Mel and her two new friends are unwillingly thrown into a dark and killer plot. With the bacteria infecting both humans and pokemon alike, a cult called the Faceless start to appear, prophesising of a God like man who has the cure. When teen idol Shiloh Green joins the cult, their popularity grows even more. But when they meet Shiloh’s sister they realise something much sinister than originally thought is going on. Siding with the police Mel and her friends carry on travelling and challenging the gyms, desperately trying to keep a sense of normalcy. However with a growing realisation that her new friends are not what she first thought, and that her old rival is connected much deeper with the rampaging disease, normalcy is not something that is easy to get a grip on.

    Here's the link to the thread about the Ringu Region in the Authors Atlas: The Burning Affliction (Ringu Region)

    Index

    Chapter One
    Chapter Two
    Chapter Three
    Last edited by Zelo; 4th February 2012 at 12:09 PM.

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    Registered User Zelo's Avatar
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    Chapter One

    Melisa lay in the top bunk, counting the cracks in the pokemon centre ceiling in the dark. The excitement of finally starting her pokemon journey had left after reaching the first town, Fallsage. Rolling onto her side Mel looked at the other bunk beds in the room, and the people who inhabited them. Out of the eight bunk beds, only three of them, including hers, had someone in them. One of the people Mel recognised, another trainer from her town starting their journey, but the other was someone unfamiliar. Looking at the xtransceiver that lay beside her, she noted the time and sighed. When she woke up the day before at half six, Mel thought she would never wake up any earlier in her life. But as she lay completely awake in the uncomfortable bed, watching the minutes slowly rolling past five, Mel realised she was wrong.

    Sitting up she swung her legs over the side of the bed, dangling them in the air before picking up the clothes at the end of her bed and changing quietly. Shifting of the bed and onto the floor, Mel sat on the end of the bottom bunk. Beside her lay her bag where she placed her now folded pyjamas before zipping it up. Slipping on her brown sandals she left the room, closing the door softly behind her as to not wake the other two trainers up.

    After going to the toilet and tidying her curly sandy blond hair into a messy bun, a white hairband keeping a few stray strands back, Mel headed down the corridor in search of the canteen, hoping it would be open. While it was still early, all the lights were on, and as she walked up the freshly washed stairs, Mel began to hear the murmurs of the kitchen staff and other early risers. Pushing a pair of white doors open she walked into the rather empty canteen, greeted by the smell of cooked breakfasts and coffee. Sitting at an empty table by the window, Mel slipped her bag of her shoulder and onto the floor. Looking outside she watched as the small town slowly came to life. The sun was rising over the surrounding woods, spilling golden light onto the old houses and buildings. Fallsage town was small and quaint, only really containing houses and home run or small businesses like the grocers, the bookshop and the small tea house. It was a rather traditional town compared to many of the other towns and cities in the Ringu region, but like most others it did contain a pokemon centre.

    Standing back up Mel went over to the breakfast buffet, pouring herself a coffee and grabbing a bowl of fruit and a plate of small pancakes before sitting back down. As she ate her attention was diverted away from the town's life outside the window and to the muted TV screen in the corner which turned on. From the headline at the bottom and the pictures being shown, Mel gathered that it was a news report about a break in in a research lab in the mountains by Snowview city. When the news changed to a different story Mel frowned. Usually a news story about a break in in a laboratory is rather a big deal, and she would have thought it would have had much more coverage. With a shrug Mel carried on eating her breakfast, deciding it was probably only a minor break in and that it was far too early to be doing any strenuous thinking.

    Draining the last of her coffee Mel sat back in her chair, unsure of what to do. The previous night she had planned to phone her friend before leaving the town, but as it was only just six, she knew Alexis would not be up yet. With a small smile Mel could not help but wish she had waited a couple more days before leaving, so she could have started with Alexis and celebrated her friend's birthday. But she knew Alexis would have none of it. She had said she did not want Mel to wait and celebrate her birthday with her because she did not want Mel to have to wait two more days before starting her journey, but Mel had a sneaky feeling that there was another reason. Alexis did not want to travel with Mel for her journey, at least not for the beginning anyway. They had been best friends for years, almost inseparable and always dependant on each other. Moving her gaze back to the window, she inwardly nodded. It was a good thing that they did not start their journey together, they both needed to learn how to be independent from each other, and this was the best way Mel could think of.

    The door opened and Mel looked over to the girl walking in. She was tall, and Mel realised that she looked older than herself to. Her shoulder length wavy brown hair was let loose, a black and white chequered trilby hat on her head and her hands clad with matching fingerless gloves. The kitchen staff greeted her as if personally knowing her and Mel could not help but wonder who she was. She walked with an air of confidence a celebrity might have, and not many trainers ever lasted for more than a year or so. A thought sprung into Mel's head. What if she was a gym leader? Frowning she tried to think back to her pokemon studies of the gym leaders, but only remembered their names, not their appearances.

    "Ira maybe, she defiantly looks like someone who would train fighting type pokemon. Or maybe Sela from the rock type gym?" Mel murmured quietly.

    Noticing that there was someone watching her, the girl turned to face Mel, holding her breakfast on a tray. With a big, toothy grin she walked over, and plonked herself sideways onto the chair on the opposite side of the table to Mel.

    "I'm Olive; you were staying in the bunks weren't ya? You a knew trainer?"

    "Erm, yes. I started yesterday," Mel said, rather surprised by the forwardness of the girl now sitting in front of her.

    "You'll get used to those beds after a while, they may be killer but it still beats sleeping outside on the ground. Though I guess the warm, starry nights spring and summer have aren't too bad. Camping in autumn and winter is never pleasant, even with the proper kit," Olive carried on, only pausing when taking a bite out of her scrambled eggs on toast. "So, what starter did ya choose?"

    "Oh, my dad helped me catch a pidove with one of his pokemon," Mel said, a part of her mind trying to think if there was a gym leader called Olive, but she drew a blank.

    "Awesome, I started with a pawniard; he was like our house pet. It was good to start with an old friend like that I think, but he was pretty useless when battling to start with," Olive said with a laugh, placing her knife and fork onto her now empty plate and taking a sip from her orange juice. "I remember my first battle with him, or well, lack of battle. He was so scared that he went back into the pokéball, leaving me to run away from a group of Patrats. You got any war stories yet?"

    "I tried to have a battle with a Patrat, but it hit back and dashed of too fast. It was a pretty uneventful journey from Aldwall to here."

    "Ah, Patrats are like that. Quick little basterds they are, and vicious to sometimes"

    "What pokemon do you have?" Mel asked, unsure if it was rude to ask but not really caring either way.

    "I've got a bisharp, lampent, panpour and a mienfoo. Mienfoo is my newest one, only caught her a week or so ago, haven't even given her a nickname yet. I'll show you them outside if ya like?"

    Before Mel could reply a beeping came from Olive's xtransceiver. Looking down at her wrist she tapped it a few times before letting out an aggravated huff.

    "But not right now, another time maybe then? I'll see ya around kid," Finishing her juice in one gulp she picked her bag of the floor and walked out of her room, giving Mel a small wave before the door swung shut behind her.

    Blinking slowly Mel realised she had not even given Olive her name. Looking back down at her own xtransceiver she realised that an hour had passed.
    Stretching her arms she stood up, deciding to leave the canteen and call Alexis. It was still early, but her friend always woke up early on her birthday. Smiling at the nurse stood at reception Mel made her way out of the pokemon centres lobby and walked over to a bench outside. Placing her bag onto the bench she fished out Pidove's pokéball, making a mental note to buy a belt which could hold six pokéballs.

    "Rise an' shine Pidove," she said as she released the pokemon.
    "Pidove," Pidove said, flying in the air before landing on the ground.

    "Morning to you to."

    Turning her attention to her xtransceiver Mel pressed a few buttons until a picture of Alexis appeared. Clicking the picture the device began to ring. There was a short buzz, and her friends face filled the screen.

    "Happy birthday!" she practically screamed, earning her a few weird looks from people passing by. "How is the birthday girl?"

    "I am absolutely brilliant, except for the fact that I have to be nice to my brother," she said sticking her tongue out at the screen. "My parents finally let me dye my hair red, can you see?"

    "Yes I can see, these things aren't black and white y'know," Mel's eyes brightened as a thought came to her mind, bending down she scooped up her Pidove into her arm and moved him so he was in front of the xtransceiver. "Pidove says happy birthday a well."

    "Pidove."

    "Thank you very much Pidove," Alexis replied in a voice of mock politeness before frowning. "Aren't his toes hurting your arm?"

    "First they are nails," Mel said in an almost scornful voice. "And second, yes they are so I'm gonna just place him down now."

    Rolling her eyes Alexis waited on the other side of the screen as her friend placed Pidove onto the floor. When Mel appeared back on the screen she smiled.

    "I would show you my Snivy but the lazy thing is still sleeping." Suddenly Alexis face changed, morphing into a combination of anger and annoyance. "You will never guess what I saw yesterday after you left."

    "What?"

    "Chris didn't get the normal starter pokemon like me, nor did he do what you did and catch your own. You know his cousin, the really nice girl? Yea well she had been on holiday in Sinnoh with her boyfriend and he caught him a shinx for his starter. I mean how unfair is that?"

    "That is just like him isn't it, guess the pokemon here aren't good enough for him," Mel growled, both at just the thought of Chris and the fact that a Shinx would have a type advantage over her starter. "But, let's not ruin the day with thoughts of him. What did your parents get you?"

    After talking for a few more minutes Alexis had to go and they said their goodbyes, promising to call each other again after a couple of days. Sitting down next to her bag Mel looked down to Pidove who was lazily pecking at the grassy ground before looking up at the clear morning sky. Breathing in the cool air she closed her eyes, feeling the slight breeze against her skin. It was going to be fun to travel across Ringu, see places she's only ever read about and meet so many pokemon and people. But after so many years of planning, of waiting, it did not feel quite real. That at any moment she was going to open her eyes and find herself back at home in bed with just another normal day in front of her. Feeling Pidove nudging against her shin Mel opened her eyes and smiled at the pokemon.

    "C'mon, I'll buy a belt and then we'll get going."
    Last edited by Zelo; 28th January 2012 at 01:57 PM.

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    Default Re: The Burning Affliction


    Chapter Two


    As Mel wandered through the wood one thought kept passing through her mind. Her feet hurt. It had been about two hours since she left Fallsage town, the path underneath her feet had turned to a mixture of rocks, tree roots and hard dried mud. As more loose rocks made their way into her sandals, she decided it was a good time to take a break. Sitting of the edge of the path Pidove, who had been flying above her, swooped back down to the ground, staring at her as if asking why they stopped.

    It was odd owning a pokemon. As she emptied her shoes Mel watched as the pidove began pecking at the ground again, and she felt unsure how to interact with it. Mel knew she was lucky to have a behaving pokemon, but it did seem much more interested in pecking the ground than her. Realising that he was probably hungry she slipped of her bag and pulled out some food for both herself and the pidove. Noticing the food, Pidove perked its head up from the ground and flew over; picking at the food Mel had played out for him.

    Leaning her head against the tree and closing her eyes, the tiredness which deserted her in the morning creeping back. While tempted to have a short nap she shook the thought from her mind. It was a long walk from Fallsage to Valmere City, one she knew she probably would not make in a day, but she at least wanted to make it out of the wood before night. Opening her eyes Mel frowned. Pidove was no longer in front of her.

    “Pidove,” she called standing up. “Pidove come back.”

    When no reply was heard Mel began to panic. Running into the road she started slowly spinning around, searching the sky and the surrounding trees and bushes. She tried to call again, her voice cracking but no reply came. Again and again she called and finally a reply did come, but not the one she wanted. Glowing red eyes appeared in the shadows of the woods, and slowly a pack of patrats stalked out. As they walked towards her, Mel took nervous steps back, afraid to call again in case they attack. A lump began to form in her throat as growls emerged from the pokemon in front of her. Suddenly they lunged forward and Mel screamed. Stumbling over her feet she fell to the ground.

    One of the patrats bit her ankle, another her leg and the others scratched at her arms. Kicking one of them away she called for her pokemon again, before hitting another with the back of her hand. Finally up above she heard the sound of a pidove, her pidove. Swooping down Pidove grabbed a patrat in its claws, flying up and flinging it away. Still on the floor Mel used the patrats shock at the unexpected visitor to kick a few more away and stand back up.

    “Pidove use gust,” she said quickly as the pokemon regained their focus.

    Flapping his wings the pidove created a gust of wind pushing the patrats further away and causing Mel to shield herself from the wind with her scratched arms. The patrats retreated back into the woods and Pidove landed on the floor in front of Mel. Shocked at what just happened Mel fell to her knees, scooping up her pokemon and hugging it to her chest. As she knelt there the words of Olive rang in her head.

    “He was so scared that he went back into the pokéball, leaving me to run away from a group of patrats. You got any war stories yet?”

    Mel did not know what she meant by war stories then, but she figured she meant events like these. Squeezing her eyes shut she tried not to think how Olive fought of a pack of patrats without the aid of her pokemon. Taking a deep breath she opened her eyes and released Pidove from her grip, realising she must have been crushing him.

    “Thank you,” she said stroking his head before frowning. “But don’t you ever fly of like that again okay.”

    “Pidove,” the pokemon replied tilting its head.

    Standing back up Mel took out Pidove’s pokéball from her belt.

    “Time for a rest, aye? You did well,” she said before pressing the white button.

    Placing the pokéball back in her belt Mel walked back over to where her bag sat; opening it she took out a small first aids kit knowing that she would need to clean the scratches even if all she wanted to do was leave the woods as fast as possible.

    A good ten minutes later Mel was on her way out of the woods, her pace clearly faster than before. With every step her eyes darted into the surrounding shrubbery. Patrats were no longer on her good list.

    By the time she reached the edge of the wood the sun was setting. The road beneath her feet was becoming paved again, but Mel knew she would not reach Valmere town before dark and would need to set up camp. However, not that far down the road she could see a faint glow of light, joined with the sound of distant music. With her curiosity piqued Mel carried on, her pace turning to a slight jog. If it was a group of trainers’ maybe they would let her camp with them?

    Once Mel had them in sight she went back to a walk again. It was not a group of trainers, or at least she did not think that was what they were. Just of the side of the road there were a mixture of colourful caravans and hippy vans, forming a sort of semi-circle around a large campfire. By the campfire were people of all ages; however Mel noted that most of the children were running around the campsite. Pokemon of all types inhabited the area as well, not all native to the Ringu region and some dressed up. Three of the men by the campfire each held and played an instrument, one a guitar, the other a pair of bongo drums and the last a harmonica. Beside them sat a particularly old lady with long greying hair and besides her plaiting the long hair was - Mel blinked. The sight of Olive was not one she expected to see, but in a way she fitted in with this motley bunch. Looking up Olive spotted Mel, and with one hand waved her over.

    “Hey kid! Fancy seeing you here.”

    “Hi Olive,” Mel said, her nerves clear in her voice as she walked over.

    “What happened to your arms?” Olive said, a frown coming to her face as she looked down to Mel’s legs to see similar scratches and bites. “And your legs?”

    “Patrats,” she said sheepishly. “You were right, they are vicious things.”

    “Defiantly, well you still turned out better than I did,” Olive agreed, but her face lit up in its usual cheerfulness again and she gestured to the old lady beside her. “Meet grandma.”

    “Nice to meet you, I’m Mel,” she said with a small smile, a bit shocked to find out that the calm old lady was Olive’s grandma.

    Apparently reading Mel’s’ thought s Olive laughed; placing grandmas now plaited hair down.

    “She’s not my grandma, I just met her today. Nah, everyone calls her grandma,” Olive explained. “She can tell your fortune, it’s so cool! Why you still standing c’mon sit down next to me.”

    “Sure it’s alright, I mean, they don’t know me?” Mel said cautiously as she sat on the tattered blanket beside Olive, taking her backpack of and resting it against her side.

    “They don’t know me either, but their nice folk. It’s stupid the amount of discrimination traveling folk get, I mean we’re essentially the same as travelling folk ‘cept we don’t travel in large groups like them,” she said leaning back on her hands as she closed her eyes. “I mean listen to that music, it beats all that usual rubbish.”

    Copying Olive’s movements Mel listened to the music and stared up at the starry sky. It was a gorgeous night and it felt a shame that Pidove was missing it. Reaching into her belt Mel picked out his ball and pressed the white button, releasing the pokemon. Hovering in the air for a moment he landed beside Mel, peering around curiously.

    “Pidove meet Olive, Olive meet Pidove,” Mel introduced.

    “Nice to meet ya Pidove,” Olive said with a laugh, gently taking his wing and shaking it. “Oh, I’ll show you Hatsy. The other three would be grouchy if I woke them up now.”

    Taking the red and white pokéball from her belt Olive released a panpour. The pokemon gave a delighted screech at being let out and clambered up onto Olive’s lap. Reaching up with its blue arms the pokemon took the trilby hat of Olive’s head before placing it on his.

    “Right after I caught him he stole my hat, and I later realised he loved hats, so y’know he became Hatsy,” Olive said, turning the pokemon around on her lap so that he faced Mel. “Now, say hello to Mel.”

    “Panpour,” the pokemon said, using his paw to tilt the hat towards Mel as a greeting.

    As the evening carried on Mel felt almost at home with the group of travellers, especially as the night darkened and a few more trainers joined the camp site. Her pidove and the panpour got on well, and were both now snuggled together on the floor asleep. Olive however, had vanished from sight. About an hour ago she had told her to keep an eye on Hatsy before walking over to a few of the travellers and Mel had not seen where she went after that. But as she lay on the floor, feeling the warmth radiating from the fire and watching the stars twinkling in the night sky she felt no worry. It was too nice an evening for worry and all previous thoughts of the pack of vicious patrats had left Mel’s mind. Anyway, she had decided a while ago that the patrats were not being particularly evil when attacking her; she had probably stopped in their territory. Still, she never wanted to catch a patrat after that no matter the reason of them attacking her. Those glowing red eyes would forever be engraved in her mind. Mel frowned. Since when did patrats have glowing red eyes?

    But as the soft melody played from the people beside her waft around the campsite Mel felt her eyes become heavy and droop until they were closed. Like most of the children and other trainers she drifted into sleep, not hearing as Olive staggered back to her place and almost collapse onto the floor giggling.

    Mel awoke to the sound of a groaning Olive. Blinking a few times to adjust to the morning light she sat up, rolling her shoulders and wincing slightly as her back began to ache. Sleeping on a hard and bumpy ground with nothing but a thin blanket Mel realised was not a good idea. Turning her head to the side she noticed that Olive had her head clutched in her hands and was resting on her drawn up knees, a groaning sound still emitting from her mouth. Beside the older girl Hatsy who, used to his trainers behaviour, let out a snort before wandering of to explore the campsite.

    “You alright Olive?” Mel asked, peering closer at the girl.

    “Shut up, you’re too loud!” Olive replied with a moan. “Turn of the god damn lights damn it, it’s to fricken bright.”

    Stunned Mel sat there stunned, watching Olive huddled and rocking in pain. She had never seen anything like this before, for someone to be in so much obvious pain, yet everyone around her including Hatsy, to be seemingly so uncaring. About to ask if she was sick Mel was stopped when an old hand rested on her head. Looking up she saw the wrinkled face of grandma, who was wearing a warm yet small smile.

    “Come girl,” she said as she started to turn. “Leave her. Her agony is her own fault and for her to bare, you can do nothing to help. Follow me.”

    Watching for a moment as grandma began to hobble away she sprang to her feet, pausing to take another look at Olive she heaved her bag on and followed. She did not understand the old ladies words, and if anything found them rather mean. If Olive was sick how was that her own fault? There must be something that she could do for her? But she followed silently, her head bowed. No matter her opinions she would not voice them, because honestly just being by Olive in such pain made her feel awkward and want to leave, not help.

    “Shaun is walking down to Valmere town ahead of us; go with him to be safe. There have been reports of feral pokemon attacking nearby,” the old lady explained, stopping when she reached the young man who was playing the guitar last night. “Shaun, this is the girl I was telling you ‘bout. Look after her alright?”

    The man, who could not have been older than twenty nodded, picking up his bag of the floor and slinging it on his shoulders.

    “You look after my guitar; don’t let any of those kids touch it. They’ll ruin it with their sticky fingers,” he said to grandma before walking down to the path, motioning with his hand for Mel to follow.

    Without a word Mel hurried of after him, struggling to keep her short legs in speed with his long strides. Hearing the call of her pokemon she looked behind, Mel remembered that he was still released and guessed he was growing tired. Taking out his pokéball she called him back and looked back up at Shaun, who was once again a few paces in front of her. He was tall, and had a lean body. Unlike the rest of the travellers he was dressed rather smart: wearing a dark red shirt, black trousers and black sturdy shoes. Like the rest of the travellers his hair was rather long, a few long strands at the front braided with blue beads at the end. Seemingly annoyed at the silence Shaun began to speak.

    “So,” he said lazily, unsure of what to say. “You gonna challenge the gym?”

    “Yea,” Mel replied. “But I might train a bit first, haven’t really had any proper battles with Pidove yet.”

    “No need,” he said and after gaining a confused look from Mel he continued. “Gyms gone real downhill. The leader’s vanished of on some month long holiday, his daughters in charge. She aint any good.”

    “That’s good I guess. For me anyway,” Mel said slowly before frowning. “I thought the leader had a son, he’s older. Wouldn’t he be the leader in this case?”

    “He buggered of as well,” Shaun said with a laugh. “Dropped Terra right in there, she hadn’t even got all ‘er badges, but didn’t want the gym to close. It’d been in the family for years.”

    “Terra?”

    “What? Oh, that’s her name; guess it aint something taught in schools.”

    Mel nodded and silence cast over them again.

    Soon more roads began to appear, splitting off into rows of houses and it was not long before they reached the entrance of Valmere city. Mel almost looked up in awe at the tall buildings, but with the many business men and women hurrying through the streets and Shaun standing beside her she felt a bit too embarrassed. It was not just workers that filled the streets; many beginner trainers were everywhere as well. They stood out from the city folk and even the normal tourists. On the pavements they were having pokemon battles or walking around the streets with their pokemon out in search of the gym or pokemon centre. Walking through the crowds without the worry of being lost Mel felt glad to have Shaun as her guide.

    Upon reaching the pokemon centre Shaun left with the parting words that the gyms just down the road on the left and that he would meet her later at the pokemon centre. Inside Mel handed Pidove’s ball to the nurse before going in search of the canteen. How she had managed to last the walk without breakfast Mel was not sure, even though the couple of cereal bars she had in her bag would not have made much of a breakfast.

    The canteen was crowded with no completely empty tables but plenty of spare chairs and spaces. Taking her breakfast of choice Mel moved and sat at a table filled with trainers who looked new. They smiled at her briefly before carrying on with their conversation, one of them eyeing her scratches warily.

    “It’s scary y’know. Just starting your journey with all those wild pokemon going crazy,” a girl said.

    “I know, but sad as well if that pack of dead patrats I saw earlier died from it.” Mel blinked.

    “Where did you see the patrats?” Mel asked tentatively.

    “In the woods early this morning, I only arrived here about an hour ago,” the guy said. “Pokémon dying, you never really think about that really.”

    “I wonder if it’s got anything to do with that new flu spreading around. The one that makes people hallucinate and strike out at others?” another of the trainers asked.

    “Nah, pokemon can’t catch human illnesses, and we can’t catch pokemon illnesses,” the boy said dismissively. “It could be linked with that break in though, I’m going to do a bit of sneaking around when I reach Snowview city.”

    Sitting back in her chair Mel grew pale. That pack of patrats could not have been the same ones that attacked her, right? Surely it was just a coincidence, though it would explain their red glowing eyes if they had some sort of disease. Looking at the scratches on her arms Mel swallowed. It was common knowledge pokemon illnesses did not transfer to humans like the boy said, but it would still be a good idea to ask a nurse to check for an infection. Anyway she could have gotten any sort of infection from sleeping outside with those cuts; her first aid skills were not exactly brilliant.

    She carried on eating her breakfast, the other trainers on the table moving their conversation to their starter pokemon. Feeling someone watching her Mel looked up, seeing it was the same girl as before. With their eyes locked her mouth began to open, but it quickly shut and she looked back down at her lap. Watching the girl curiously for a moment Mel resumed her gaze to the table in front of her, wondering if the scratches really stood out that much. A few minutes later the girl was staring at her again. Deciding to confront her about it Mel opened her mouth to speak, but was cut off when the canteen doors opened and two boys with booming laughs entered.

    Shifting slightly in her chair to see them Mel felt slightly scared when she did. They looked about Olive’s age, maybe a bit older, but were taller and had more muscles than her friends toned and athletic build. Both were wearing baggy jeans, barely held up by their belts, and while one did wear a form fitting tank top which showed his muscles underneath the other seemed to have just not bothered with a top, showing of a tattooed torso. However what struck Mel as most odd was that they both had chains with small charms on, one around the shirtless guy’s neck and the other clipped on the trousers of the second guy. Mel knew men often wore chains, and had even linked scary men like them with chains. But the charms just seemed a bit too feminine.

    “Man, brawlers give me the creeps,” one of the trainers on the table said quietly, gaining a few murmured agreements. “Guess they’re heading down to Ostacre town for their spring contest. Think I may try and hurry through these next few towns, don’t wanna be there with all those brawlers.”

    “Brawlers?” Mel asked confused.

    The name rang a vague bell in her mind, and she sort of remembered it being descried as a more elite class of trainer at school. There was an option to take extra brawler lessons instead of extra trainer lessons, but Mel had been so focussed on becoming a trainer she had not even listened to her teachers explain about brawlers.

    “Wait, so you mean you’re not a brawler?” the girl who had been staring at her scars said.

    Mel shook her head.

    “Oh my god, I’m so sorry,” she said quickly. “From all those scars I thought you were, and like he said they’re real scary. Not just in the way they look but their skill as well y’know?”

    “So where’d you get the scars from?” another trainer asked before Mel could ask again what a Brawler was.

    After the explanation of the patrats the trainers left, all previous thoughts of brawlers gone from their mind as they discussed the rabid pokemon, linking it with the break in. Sighing, Mel finished her food and stood up. As she left the canteen she looked at the two guys in the corner of the canteen, eying the charms with curiosity. They looked similar to the charms on Olive’s bracelet, but she could not be sure.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: The Burning Affliction

    I have read the everything you've posted so far and I have to say I'm impressed.

    The plot is engaging and mysterious at the same time. It sorta reminds me of 'I Am Legend' but is set at the beginning when the disease still isn't a national disaster. For me, the plot has to be one of the best I've seen on the Workshop and by far is the most prominent thing in your story. Not only is the concept good, but the way you approach it and telling of the story, is simply great.

    For instance, instead of beginning with "Once upon a time, there was an epidemic, people are dying, and I'm going to become a Pokemon Master." You approached it from the viewpoint of a young girl just starting out as the events begin to unfold. It's exciting, mysterious, realistic and leaves a ton of room for plot twists and character development. This plot could have more twists than the labyrinth.

    Another point of interest is your writing style. I really like it, its sophisticated while somewhat simple. You draw the reader in, but without smothering them with words, events or whatnot. Along with the excellent premise you wrote, the writing style is what drew me in. The all-new region is good, too. But I think it would be a good idea to draw a map of the region or something so we don't get lost while reading the story. Its always a good idea to draw a map of the geography.

    However, I noticed that you don't describe your characters enough. You described the hair, the face but you do not describe other things. For instance, I don't know what Mel looks like. You have to describe her so that if I were to walk down a street, I would recogonize Mel right away. Describe the body shape, clothes and eyes. These are usually the most important things along with the hair.

    Anyway, great story, so far. You have all the elements to make your story really stand out, just be careful on how you handle it from here.
    Last edited by Marcat; 28th January 2012 at 12:33 PM.

  5. #5
    Registered User Zelo's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Burning Affliction

    Thank you for the review, I'm glad you like it. I know what you mean about the description; I was going to describe bits and pieces of her appearance throughout the first chapter but got distracted. I don't like when in books there is just one massive paragraph describing what a character looks like so I try to avoid it, I guess I just ended up avoiding it a bit too much. There is also a thread about the Ringu Region in the Authors Atlas, which reminds me I should link to it in the Index post.

    Thanks again for reading and I’ll try to fix the issues about the characters appearances.

  6. #6
    Registered User Zelo's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Burning Affliction

    Chapter Three


    Mel stood at the edge of the earthy arena. Pidove was realised and flying in front of he, the gym leader who stood on the other side of the arena watching the pokemon carefully. Terra was young, only around sixteen, a few years older than herself. Her blond hair was poufy with frizz and she wore an expression of boredom, annoyance shining through her brown eyes. Pursing her lips Terra took out a pokéball from the belt round her waist, held it for a few seconds before finally throwing it.

    “Sandile let’s go!” Terra said and a ground pokemon landed on the ground in front of her. “It’ll be a one on one. You have the first move trainer.”

    Mel thought for a moment. She knew she had the type advantage here, not one of Terra’s ground attacks would work, but Sandile still had dark and normal type attacks. Looking up Mel locked eyes with Pidove and nodded. He was ready.

    “Pidove use gust!”

    “Sandile burrow and counter with bite,” Terra said.

    Pidove began flapping his wings, a wind forming from them. But before it could hit his opponent Sandile was already burrowed beneath the sandy earth. Once the wind had calmed Sandile ran out of the sand, jumping up once underneath Pidove with her jaws open and snapping them shut in seconds. But Pidove was too high, and all she got was a mouthful of feathers.

    “Swoop down and peck,” Mel called.

    “Bite again.”

    The pidove swooped down, but before he could hit the Sandile landed her attack. With the pidove in her jaws she threw him to the side wounded. Struggling back up Pidove flapped his wings and flew back in the air again, but with much greater difficulty. Frowning Mel tried to think of a plan. The air was safe, the ground not so much.

    “Use gust again Pidove,” she commanded, her eyes flickering from her pokemon to the gym leader.

    “Sandile burrow again.”

    This time however the Sandile did not burrow fast enough and was flung back by the gust of wind. Mel saw Terra wince slightly before her face went back to its bored expression, but instead of annoyance, anger was behind her eyes. She told Sandile to use bite again, and like last time she missed, Pidove too high in the air.

    “Use gust once more Pidove!”

    Before Terra could tell Sandile to dodge her pokemon was flung back again. On shaking legs the Sandile stood back up, looking back at her trainer pleadingly. She stared back, wanting to offer her pokemon encouragement, but said nothing. Curling her hands into fists Terra looked back to Mel.

    “Sandile use lear!”

    Pidove hovered high in the air but when his eyes looked with Sandiles he faltered, lowering slightly from his high position. Noticing the height difference Terra smirked.

    “Sandile bite,” she commanded and the Sandile rushed forward, jumping in the air and biting the Pidove.

    “Peck her Pidove and fly back up,” Mel said desperately, realising that despite what Shaun had said she may lose.

    Struggling free from the Sandiles grip Pidove pecked at her neck before flying back in the air. The Sandile crouched as if ready to pounce and bite once more, but her body was visibly shaking.

    “Use gust once more!”

    With the flaps of his wings a gust of wind rushed towards the Sandile, knocking her back and causing her to finally faint. Letting out a growl of frustration Terra returned Sandile to her pokéball. The ball back in the belt Terra slid out a black case from her white jeans pocket, opening it and taking out the gyms badge.

    “Well done, like every other Tom, Dick and Harry you have defeated the Valmere city gym. How skilful you must be,” Terra snarled as she walked across the arena, throwing the badge at Mel before storming out the gym.

    Barely catching the badge Mel stood frozen to her place, staring at the brown and green metal badge in her hand. When Pidove landed in front of her a huge smile grew on her face. She had her first gym badge, sure she had a type advantage and Terra was not the actual gym leader but she still won. A laugh escaped her mouth and Pidove flew closer to her, pecking at her feet. Crouching down she gave him a gentle pet. Taking out a purple case from her pale floral print dungarees Mel placed her fist badge inside and admired it for a few seconds. Pidove began pecking her feet again; bring Mel out of her thoughts. Snapping the case shut she put it back in her pocket and stood up.

    “Thank you Pidove, you did well,” she said before taking out his ball. “Let’s get you to the pokemon centre.”

    Back in the pokemon centre Mel handed the nurse her pokéball before sitting on one of the settees. It was only early afternoon but she was exhausted. The buzz of having her first gym battle was still there but she felt bad at the same time. Terra probably did not even want to be a gym leader, just stuck with the gig because her dad and brother had both left. On the other hand Mel did not really care - thoughts of the next gym and what sort of pokemon would have the best advantage invading her mind. The next gym was an ice type, the Peak badge in Snowview city. The leader was Crystal, and from what Mel could remember from her lessons she was not a push over. Against her, Pidove being a flying type would have the disadvantage: rock, steel, fighting and fire type pokemon being the best against ice types. She knew there would be a few rock types at the base of the mountain, and maybe even some ferroseeds if there are any caves.

    The nurse called out her name; standing up Mel collected her pokéball and walked out of the pokemon centre, unsure as what to do. She had been so excited to get to Valmere city to challenge the gym she had not stayed to look around Fallsage and go to the tea house. This time Mel is determined not to miss anything. Valmere city has two places of interest: the Waterfall Cave and the art gallery. Not really being that interested in art, Mel headed for the cave.

    The cave was just outside the city, nestled in the Ebia Mountains with the entrance decorated by a large wooden gate, painted with reds, gold’s and blues. This led to a long, steep stairway, the stairs made of slippery stone and the path lit up by the dull lights attached to the surrounding rock. As she walked down the sound of running water became louder, the sound merging with the voices of people and the cries of pokemon battles. Reaching the end of the stairs Mel was greeted with a larger large cave, the waterfall on the far side with the café next to it. At the other end of the cave a few trainers were having battles, the odd staff member dotted around to make sure not to many were happening at the same time and that none got out of hand.

    Walking over to look at the waterfall, she leant on the metal bar separating the people from the water and the large drop on the other side. Looking down Mel could vaguely see where the waterfall ended in the underground river. The whole of the Ebia Mountains had rivers running underneath it, as did many of the surrounding towns and villages. Beside her a person flipped a coin into the water before disappearing into the crowed again. With a frown Mel peered over again, wondering if it was just noise in the cave which made the coin sound like it never hit the water. Soon another couple stood next to her, one of their voices making her look up surprised.

    It was a girl around the age of eighteen, her hair a wavy blond and wearing a little pale green dress, with a flowing cardigan and hat to match. Mel stared at her for a few seconds before the name finally registered in her head.

    “Emily,” Mel said, the name coming out of her mouth before she could stop it.

    Emily turned round, a look of confusion on her face before being replaced with a smile.

    “Mel,” she greeted. “It’s nice to see you, it’s been ages. This is Aiden, my boyfriend.”

    The boy beside her looked about the same age as Shaun and had a very charming, but eerie air about him. His smile, like Emily’s was warm, but his brown, almost black eyes seemed to glint with something that was more malice than warmth. Mel began to frown, thinking the way Emily seemed to reply was rather forced, but Aiden began to speak before she could dwell on the thought.

    “It’s a pleasure to meet you Mel,” he said as his arm slid round Emily’s waist. “Chris has talked about you often.”

    Hiding a gag with a cough Mel plastered a smile on her face. The fact that Emily was Chris’ cousin had slipped her mind, as did the idea that he might be with them somewhere. Not really wanting to see him and ruin her day she began thinking of an excuse to leave.

    “Ah, does he? Oh well look at the time I think I better-“

    “Aiden, there’s nothing here,” Chris said walking up to them before his eyes landed on Mel.

    The look on his face was not something Mel expected to see: a mixture of a fear and despair. In a blink of an eye the odd expression was replaced with a cocky grin. He raked a hand through his spiky ginger hair before folding his arms across his hoody clad chest.

    “What an unpleasant surprise seeing you here,” he said, his hazel eyes wandering down to the pokéball on Mel’s belt. “How ‘bout a battle, aye? Bet I can beat you with my eyes shut.”

    “Didn’t you want to challenge the gym?” Emily asked, trying to come to Mel’s rescue.

    “He can challenge the gym afterwards,” Aiden said before Chris could reply. “This will be good practice anyway. Mel?”

    Reluctantly she agreed, following the trio to the other side of the cave. Emily looked behind her and gave Mel a sympathetic smile before resuming her conversation with Aiden. Taking Pidove’s ball out of her belt, she held it in her hand gingerly, wondering why she was so nervous. She had the ground badge and Chris did not, that meant she was ahead of him. Surely she had the upper hand even if he did have the type advantage with his shinx?

    Standing opposite each other she released Pidove as Chris released shinx. For a moment Mel just looked at the pokemon in awe, having never seen a shinx before. An inpatient cough brought her out of her amazement and back into focus. She could not afford to lose this battle, Chris was her rival and she would defeat him.

    “Pidove use gust!”

    “Auric use spark,” Chris said in a bored voice, seemingly more interested in the ceiling than the battle in front of him.

    Pidove began flapping his wings, a strong gust of wind forming from them but Auric seemed almost unbothered by it. She began to run forward, blue electricity forming around her body as she jumped up and tackled the pidove. Knocked back Pidove landed on the floor, struggling to stand up before falling back down and fainting. Chris called his pokemon back and strode out of the cave, not bothering to collect his winnings. Emily and Aiden followed, neither sparing Mel a glance as she stared down at her defeated Pidove in shock.

    One attack. Just one attack and he had defeated her. Falling to her knees Mel scooped her pokemon into her arms, not quite believing what happened. He could not be that strong could he? Or was she just that weak? Either way her win in the gym was no grand feat, just like Shaun had said. It would take a lot of work to catch up with Chris, a lot of work to compete with any trainer. Sending Pidove back to his pokéball Mel stood back up and realising that a few people were staring at here hurried out of the cave. Half of her wanted to call Alexis for comfort, but the other was too embarrassed. She got so full of herself because of one win, Alexis would not comfort her, just mock her for getting so big headed. That was one of the good things about always being with her friend, she never let her get arrogant. No, one arrogant person in their duo was enough, they did not both need to be.

    As she hurried through the city Mel wished it was just a small town or village, suddenly hating the large crowds and complex streets she had just admired only hours ago. It was not long before she realised she was lost. She could not ask a trainer for help, they would surely challenge her immediately and she would then seem like a right idiot with her pokemon being faint. The only other option was the residence and business people that kept passing her, but every time she approached someone they would ignore and push past her. For once in her life she was completely alone and out of her depth, wanting nothing more than to just be back home in her bed. Feeling tears prick at her eyes she rubbed them furiously, hating the fact that she was getting so overwhelmed at just being lost.

    “Mel?” a voice called from behind her. “Are you alright?”

  7. #7
    ポケモン Tsutarja's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Burning Affliction

    Well, I have absolutely no complaints about your writing.

    The battles could be more descriptive but your way of writing is truly captivating. Personally, the only thing that bothers me are the blocks of the text, but they aren't that large so I can kinda deal with them. I'm also astounded by your fast pacing, I like how you skipped the whole beginning thing and started your story out at the Pokémon Center.

    I'll try to keep up with updates! :)


  8. #8
    Registered User Zelo's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Burning Affliction

    Thank you for the review. The battles were not the best thing I have written, it was my first attempt at a pokemon battle so hopefully they will improve and any advice on how to improve them would be great. I'll keep in mind about the blocks of text in future chapters and try to make them a bit shorter. I'm glad you’re enjoying it so far and the next chapter should be out soon!

  9. #9
    Just Marcat Marcat's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Burning Affliction

    This chapter in particular was okay...

    I don't have that much to comment here about the plot, seeing as this chapter didn't really do that much to advance it. But hey, we're still in the third chapter so we'll have to wait and see, huh? I'll keep whatever I have to say till then.

    However, a word of caution, this plot has the potential to be great and still has the potential to fail. It all depends on how you pace the plot, introduce it and how the characters deal with it. Be careful not to let your story devolve into a generic journey fic with a little twist. On the other hand, there have been fics that started off as journey fic which then became great stories, like Skyridge.

    It all depends on how you do it.

    As for the battles. They were good. Unfortunally, I am not a good person to give advice about that particular subject since I don't like writing about battles, I tend to write stories that don't have any pokemon battles at all. But there are tons of people who can help you. If I were you, I would start a thread it the writer's block and another writer will help you.

    I hope that helps and keep up with the good work.

  10. #10
    Registered User Zelo's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Burning Affliction

    This chapter was a bit of a break from the main plot, but there was a small bit of foreshadowing in it. It shouldn’t stay like a journey fic for too long, no matter how much Mel just wants to be a trainer and get her badges. Thank you for the advice about the battles, I think the next time I near one I’ll open a thread in the writers block and ask for some help. The next chapter should be up soon, and if all goes to plan the plot should be becoming much clearer. Thanks again for the review.

  11. #11
    Just Marcat Marcat's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Burning Affliction

    I thought I'd show the judging results from the past awards. If there is anything you wish to comment or ask about, please contact me.

    Plot: 7/10

    The plot so far hasn’t really shown itself. And from what I’ve seen, I’m guessing that the writer is going to try and reveal it little by little. But this doesn’t change the fact that the plot hasn’t really arisen yet. While the concept is fundamentally strong, we have yet to see where it will go.

    Characterization: 6/10

    The characters so far are still quite shallow, lacking depth and still fall under the archetypes of the journey fanfiction, with the main character, the rival and best friend. Of course, this would be expected since we are still in the beginning, but other stories have displayed a lot of characterization at this point. The characters in general are still bland and resemble a clean slate. It’s still the beginning, though, and there’s a lot that may change.

    Setting: 7/10

    Overall, a good enough setting. The writer created their own region which the story takes place, this is a good choice since it gives you the ability to be creative in the setting of the story, considering the big plot that may take place.
    But the writer does seem to throw you in there without much of a warning, leaving you wondering what they’re talking about when they mention a town or gym leader that you’ve never heard of. Though the writer has made a thread about the region, a little in-character explanation would’ve been preferable.

    Technical: 8/10

    The writer has a very good base to build on it terms of technicalities. She benefits from a solid writing style, one that keeps the reader engaged throughout the chapters. While you do notice the occasional typo or spelling mistake, it’s not a very common sight.

    Overall: 71/100

    Summary: This is a difficult one. As of recently, there have only been three chapters which doesn’t really give much to work on. The plot’s concept has a lot of potential but there hasn’t been any real sign of it so far and the characters still remain quite shallow. The overall setting is acceptable though it lacks explanation and depth. However, the writer has a unique writing style that draws the reader in and manages to hold your attention, though it still needs polishing in terms of description.
    Last edited by Marcat; 21st February 2012 at 04:16 PM.

  12. #12
    ^^ Safe-T's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Burning Affliction

    So I just read the three chapters, and I gotta say you're a natural. I look forward to see your writing develop as you continue this story. :)

    COMING SOON!

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