The Girl Who Knows the Hearts of Dragons - Author's Notes - 5/4/13
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    Default The Girl Who Knows the Hearts of Dragons - Author's Notes - 5/4/13



    Chapter 1 The Village of Dragon



    A/N:This is the re-introduction of my little project. The beta version of this fanfic was written a little while back. I've done a rewrite of this story after finding out some interesting things and exploring some new ideas that could be introduced to make the story better. Things will be drastically different from the previous incarnation of this story. The reason why I decided to rewrite the fic is because I felt the strong urge to write how Iris was portrayed to be in the game and how she started her journey. I thought that it would be a nice idea so I hope that you all enjoy my project. It's a Fanfiction on Iris, the Gym Leader of White Version's Opelucid Gym in BW. Some focus will also be on Drayden during parts of the story as he is connected to Iris. As always any and all constructive criticism is appreciated since it can only make the fic better! I hope you all enjoy reading this as much as I enjoyed writing it.

    I also would like to give an honorable mention to my first Betareader, @Human; who kindly helped betaread this first chapter and gave nice ideas, discussion, and help toward tweaking it for the better.

    @Chiplet; @Tsutarja; @Soulmaster;

    Chapter 1 The Village of Dragons


    There's a world in this universe filled with monsters who are mainly known for their special powers and abilities, these amazing monsters that inhabit this strange and unique world are called Pokémon.

    They have talents that allow them to do many amazing things! Whether it be breathing fire, generating electricity, or summoning ice storms. These magnificent beast specialize in their own specific "Type" that allows them to do such wonders, moves also have their own type. Pokémon who are the same type as the move they're using can cause greater damage than they would if they were a different type as the move they were executing.

    Each type has its advantages and disadvantages against one another. This allows there to be balance for Pokémon when they engage in contests of strength, technique, and athleticism known as "Pokémon Battles". These battles between Pokémon are considered to be a popular sport that are enjoyed by all ages. In Pokémon battles, there are people who command their Pokémon to utilize their moves against opposing Pokémon. These people who partake in this sport are called "Pokémon Trainers".

    There are trainers and people who favor some types of Pokémon over others. Facilities called "Gyms" specialize in one type of Pokémon in order to test trainers. When a trainer beats the "Gym Leader" of a Pokémon Gym, they will be awarded a "Gym Badge" that can be used to enter the "Pokémon League" of the region the gym is in.

    There are certain types of attacks that are super effective, as in doing more damage than usual, to different types of Pokémon. An example of this is that Water-type moves are very dangerous when used on Fire-type Pokémon. One of the seventeen known types that a Pokémon can be is the Dragon-type. The Dragon-type, a type that nearly all Draconian or Dragon Pokémon can be, is a rare type that has some of the best of moves under its name. There's a clear distinction between being a Dragon and Dragon-type. Charizard is draconian, but not a Dragon-type.

    One of the two types that effect Dragon-types greatly are Ice-type moves. It is hypothesized a Dragon's scale-covered body can't handle cold temperatures, unfortunately for the reptilian creatures, nearly all Ice-types wield powers like these. Dragon-type moves are super effective on Dragon-type Pokémon too.

    Dragons are known to be quite the opponents to combat in battle, being blessed with extraordinary battling prowess. Many are ferocious, many are mysterious, and many are sought for their high potential. Some are even known in legends for being responsible for the creation of many places and elements. They can also serve as guardians to people.

    These versatile beings' popularity meant they were highly sought often and that lead to them becoming a rarity in the wild. Not only is it hard to find and capture one of these brilliant individuals, it's even harder to train them, for some it's hard to tame them even. If one was to succeed in accomplishing such a hard feat, it would be a true testament to their skills to raise such a Pokémon.

    There's one village in particular where people cherish these creatures for all they're worth. In that particular village, a cheery girl who dreams of understanding the complex hearts of Dragons resides, waiting till she's of age to start her own journey. This unique girl's name is Iris."


    -:-

    The light pouring from the bright sun shined down on the forest's trees where a young girl was swinging from vine to vine. This wild child used her free time differently from all the other kids who also lived in the nearby "Village of Dragons." Unlike the others, who never really strayed too far from the village, she preferred to play in the forest.

    Her bright, maroon-red eyes stayed wary of any possible branches in her way as she swung wildly in commute to another tree. The sizable, purple hair on her head was tied up in its usual style with two rabbit ear-like puffs at each sides and one at the bottom. She sported her not-so-common cream and pink-colored garb with shoes of a similar color.

    "Can't catch me!" She teased as she was pursued by two ape-like, long, white Pokémon. She was bent on winning the game of tag, even if her playmates were clearly more adept to the terrain and action of vine-swinging than she was. She was confident of her victory with all the experience she gained through years of practicing the activity.

    "Vigorvigorvigor!" One of the Pokémon breathed heavily while it struggled to keep up with the tenacious child. The young lady grabbed another vine and went hurtling to a tree, landing on a branch from which she climbed down a limb to a lower one. Both of the Wild Monkey Pokémon followed suit with ease.

    She proceeded to leave the two Pokémon when she swung around the tree to another vine. The cunning kid then slyly giggled until she saw a branch blocking her path that made her quickly take hold of it and pull herself up. Throwing another mischievous expression, she yelled.

    "I'm right here!" The Vigoroth followed her voice, but as they came vine-swinging her way they ran into a vicious branch with their faces. That caused them to yelp in pain several times. Before she left the two poor Vigoroth, she uttered a goodbye.

    "See ya later, it was fun!" The Vigoroth simply said their names again as they rubbed their faces, still reeling from the punishment they had received. She was careful to climb down the tree as she remembered something alerting.

    "Ryuu's gonna be so mad," the girl scolded herself aloud. She knew very well that her mentor would be less than joyful at her tardiness, especially when there was an important lesson on the schedule for the day. Ryuu, her caretaker and teacher was one of the more respected people of the village. He was someone she could always look toward for advice and guidance, unfortunately, he had a low tolerance for lateness.

    The girl ran quickly, cutting through the several shortcuts in an attempt to get back to the village as soon as possible. The Dragon Village, a home for many people and Pokémon was a place the girl had lived in nearly all her life and a sanctuary for the Pokémon around it. It was a common place for the upbringing of strong trainers who wanted to catch Dragons and train their Pokémon against them.

    After she arrived at the village in around a quarter of an hour, she saw many people and Pokémon out and about doing what they usually did in the village. Some were training, some were picking berries, and some were just hanging around. Several people who knew the girl smiled at her as she was running to her lesson, she simply replied with a typical greeting for each which slurred due to her all-out running.

    During the full-speed sprint the juvenile nearly ran into a young, black-haired woman who was strolling in the opposite direction, this caused Iris to stop her race.

    "On time as always, Iris," her comment was coated with sarcasm. "You know dad's gonna be pissed," she exclaimed as she rubbed her brown eyes, as one would do after waking up from a nap. Iris sighed in dismay, she needed no one to remind her of Ryuu's strictness when it came to these things, especially not his daughter.

    Being a student under him for nearly a year now, Iris became more and more mindful of being on time for his classes. Unfortunately the distractions that surrounded her sometimes prevented her from doing that. Ryuu's classes were a lot of the time uninteresting but she had a great amount of respect for the man and understood his wishes. He always told her that the things he taught her would be of much value when she would become a trainer one day.

    "I was only playing in the forest, Mira," Iris admitted while they walked together.

    "Daddy's just gonna be all over you for not being more careful. I mean playing in the forest, right before a class? You have no concept of time," the seventeen-year-old said while frowning. The aspiring future healer had always been very kind to Iris, given her father's role as a mentor in her life. She also had a large respect for the young girl's past family and their effect on the village. "You really should manage your time better," she spoke authoritatively.

    "I just forgot. Don't worry! I'll be sure to arrive sooner next time!" Iris rolled her eyes.

    "You saying that makes me all the more worried. Did you see Shelgon while you were playing?"

    "Nah, I think he was somewhere else."

    Mira's Shelgon was the Pokémon she had since she was a little girl. He never did much battling and liked playing around in the forest often like Iris. The two would run into each other often. No further words were exchanged until the pair finally made it to Ryuu's nursery and clinic which was a, pretty simple, brick house building.

    "Well, I have to go." Mira turned away. "Try to be on time next time so daddy doesn't have a reason to get onto you anymore," the young woman chuckled as she left in the opposite direction.

    Iris took a deep breath and looked toward the door. Placing her palm on the metal knob, the girl took another deep breath and twisted it. After the door creaked open she cautiously walked in. Without looking around the building she immediately blurted.

    "Sorry I'm late!"

    The blond, older man turned his head around swiftly and glared at Iris. Dressed in his usual work attire of a pair of jogging pants and a clean white t-shirt with a light blue coat, Ryuu's face showed a miffed expression. A small bird swooped down toward Iris and shot her a nasty leer for her outburst.

    "Swablublu!" The blue-bodied, cotton-winged Pokémon pecked furiously at the air.

    "Shuush!" The man hissed in a visible bad mood. He had come to expect this sort of thing from Iris since she was only eight-years-old, but that didn't stop him from at least trying to teach her punctuality.

    "Just hurry up and get your hands washed," the man retorted, carrying several medical items. Iris went over to the sink and scrubbed her hands before returning to Ryuu, expecting a punishment or at least unpleasant words.

    "Sorry for missing the hatching of the Swablu," she said shyly.

    "Iris you know how much I dislike lateness, especially today. Next time I'm forbidding you from playing in that forest during class days. The Swablu hasn't hatched yet. Now let's get ready, it's due in a moment." Iris couldn't help but be somewhat elated as she expected her mentor to give her a more severe punishment. She did as he said and then helped get things in order around the place.

    Ryuu's nursery and clinic was his bread and butter. Healing, training, and tending to Pokémon was his forté since he was a young man around his daughter's age. The man owned the clinic for around eight years and specialized not just in healing Pokémon, but treating Dragons specifically. Ever since he was a young child he rarely saw any healers who trained specifically to take care of Dragons.

    This meant some Dragons never got proper treatment for the injuries they received back then. One day Ryuu decided he was going to change that. To succeed in doing so, he gave classes on healing to many people and tried to inform them of the basics of how to treat Pokémon. Not only that he would often help deliver the eggs of Dragons and ensure the safe hatching of the infants. It's mainly thanks to the service and undying consideration he offered over so many years that the village was brimming with Dragons and the population has increased steadily.

    "We're having the 'hatch' lesson today. It's important that you watch closely," the man lectured dryly. "Let's head to the room." Ryuu and Iris walked down the hallways of the somewhat home-like nursery with Swablu fluttering behind.

    The usual scent of freshness and disinfectant permeated the air. In the room, placed in front of her and the man was a lone egg on a table. It was surrounded by many cushions, sheets, and a small rubber tub specifically made for eggs. The room was also filled with many supplies that were prepared for new born infant Pokémon.

    "It's due in a few minutes. Quickly! Get that tub filled with some nice warm water." Ryuu examined the white and baby blue egg as Iris brought over the tub of water. He wore a stethoscope and placed the end of it firmly on the outer surface, listening for the life that it contained within its shell. Ryuu heard the sound of the Dragon inside trying to get out.

    "Standby," the man warned her. The egg began to glow a brilliant white with the light getting more and more intense with each second that passed. Iris and Ryuu both glued their eyes to the oval object. Iris would never get used to how superb it was to see a Pokémon being born. The young girl's eyes' reflected compassion made Ryuu smile weakly. With each gradual second that passed it began to slowly take shape, a small, plump, circular body formed. Two thin, plucky hairs leaped from the light. Dingy, petite feet formed from the bottom of the creature.

    The light soon began to subside. All that remained was a small Swablu, nestled in its own wings, as if they were pillows themselves. It slowly stretched out its wings, revealing itself to the world.

    "Swablublubluuuuuuu!" The newborn cried.

    "Swablu!" The elder Swablu was quick to comfort the baby.

    "Okay, let's get this little guy cleaned." Ryuu picked up the Cotton Bird Pokémon, carefully placing it into the small tub. "Pay attention, Iris." Ryuu grabbed a towel, dipped it into the water and wrung it out. He slowly cleaned and massaged the Swablu's body with the cloth, making sure to get the fluffy wings disinfected.

    Iris examined this intently as if she was truly an observant watching a seminar take place. Learning to properly deliver a newly-hatched Pokémon was one of Iris's most important learning points since she became a student under Ryuu a year ago. Mastering this would take time and her absolute attention.

    "Dry towel!" Ryuu ordered.

    "Swablublu," the older Swablu pointed to the baby, causing it to giggle. Ryuu had finished ridding it of all water. The Cotton Bird Pokémon awkwardly tried to flap its wings, attempting to emulate the elder avian. Its efforts were futile, as it was not developed enough to fly.

    "How cute," Iris admired the baby.

    "Yes a fine, young child. Swablu will be ready to leave in about, give or take...two weeks," Ryuu announced. "Things like these are sights to behold. You shouldn't ever take simple moments like these for granted."

    "Yeah, I know...." Iris had heard these types of things for a long time from Ryuu, especially when he would get nostalgic about his glory days. Iris could tell the man enjoyed having memories about his younger life, being known as one of the strongest trainers in the village since he was just a teenager. Being a master of Dragons meant a great deal.

    He always told Iris to cherish life and the beautiful moments that would await her. The birth of a Pokémon was no exception. She sometimes would get somewhat annoyed at the constant badgering she got but Ryuu only did this because he really wanted her to value life and her current youth just like he once did at her age.

    "You think you're all ready to do this yourself one day?" Ryuu cradled the baby as it drank milk-like liquid from a small bottle without a care in the world.

    "Sure I can!" Iris said without hesitation. She had heard the same question many times and she always was ready to give the same response. "Being able to successfully deliver a newborn is important because it's one of the ways you can understand them better. You told me yourself, remember?"

    "Are you sure, because...." Ryuu trailed, causing Iris to shoot him an annoyed stare. Ryuu liked seeing the distorted face she sported because it showed that he had blabbed about the subject so much that she was conditioned enough to remember it.

    "Okay, this lesson was short. I have some important business to attend to now. You may leave for the day."

    "Okay then. Bye Swablu!" Iris left out of Ryuu's clinic happily. Though class was done, she had her own business it take care of in in the forest.

    She jetted through the village before going to the forest and took notice to the people and Pokémon who were out and about. Iris looked around with a bubbly expression on her face and held her arms out, as if she were an airplane, and took off, waving to each person she passed by. The Dragon Village's people were special to her.

    Even though she didn't have her parents she was lucky enough to live in a village that had people who cared for her. It gave her joy to know that people truly did care despite some of her troublesome actions. Living with Dragons made Iris's life so exciting. She felt so attached to her home that she never felt like leaving. There's no other type of Pokémon that could make her heart leap with so much happiness other than Dragons.

    The protectors and symbols of Iris's home were irreplaceable. She hoped to one day have the blessing of being able to partner herself with one and become stronger alongside a team of them. That meant being able to train and possibly control one, something Iris simply wasn't capable of doing at the moment.

    She also had to be able to become in-sync with one of these beasts, which meant learning to attune to these creatures' hearts on a personal level. That in itself would not be easy in the slightest and she knew it.

    She was willing to look into their hearts and truly try to understand every Dragon thanks to her upbringing in the village. One of her dreams was that she could one day understand the magnificent hearts of these reptiles. She tried very often but her efforts often had little to no effect. Once she made it to the area in the forest she met a Dragon that was completely encased in a large, dome-like, gray shell.

    The only thing that was visible from inside were two golden, rough eyes. The rest of the shell was fairly dark with four stubby, rough-skinned legs that protruded from under.

    "Shel," the Pokémon greeted Iris, to which she immediately recognized to be Mira's Shelgon. He would often help her in her attempts to understand Dragon hearts. Like Mira, Shelgon had a soft spot for Iris and was more than willing to give her a hand.

    "Okay, today's the day for sure!" Iris approached the Dragon and got close to him. "Just relax."

    "Shelgongon," the Endurance Pokémon stayed fairly calm as Iris began bending down. She gently placed her palm on Shelgon's rough exterior and closed her eyes. She did her best to block out all other sounds, focusing her senses completely on the Pokémon's beating heart and doing her best to become at one with the creature.

    She opened her eyes and realized she understood nothing about the Dragon's heart much to her disappointment.

    "I guess today wasn't the day," Iris came to her senses, feeling defeated that her efforts to understand a Dragon's heart were once again in vain.

    "Shel," the Endurance Pokémon growled once before going on his own way knowing that the chances of success would be slim as usual. Iris went over to a tree and climbed it. She found a comfy, stable branch to rest soundly on as she reflected on her moment with Shelgon. She got a tad too comfortable as her momentary resting turned into a nap and then into a deep slumber.

    A few hours later she woke up, yawned, opened her eyes and stretched, feeling small pops from her bones as she got limber. The girl looked around and surveyed her surroundings. She looked up at the sky and noticed it had indeed been possibly a few hours since she had went unconscious. She climbed down the tree and began to walk back towards the village. However, she was taken by surprise during her trek.

    "Swablububluswa!" The same Pokémon Iris had known as Ryuu's helper flew in range of her face. He squawked at the young girl with a strain in his voice. Iris inspected the dotty Cotton Bird Pokémon and tilted her head wondering what was wrong.

    "Swablulu!" The small Pokémon motioned its wings in the direction of the Dragon Village. She jogged instead of walking with Swablu flying closely in front and continuously chirping.

    "What is it?" Iris asked while jogging, as if it would make a difference since she couldn't understand the Pokémon. Just when she was about to enter the village the Cotton Bird began to peck her head, pointing to a tree. She went up the tree and stayed tuckered in the greenery of the branches and looked down the village.

    She heard many roars and yelps. The sound of them made her worried for what could have possibly been happening. There was an unusual amount of people along with Ryuu gathered with strange-looking men in front of them.

    Iris attempted to get closer by carefully going to yet another branch a tree nearer. When she got a full view of it all she started filling with a mixture of emotions, mostly fear. This fear was from what would become of the titular creatures and people of her village as she obtained full attention of what was happening.

    She noticed the people that stood around. Most hid in the safety of their homes and others were outside watching the situation unfold, daring not to make a move for the sake of their lives. An usual aura of joy was replaced by unrelenting panic.

    Men in black, dingy clothing gathered up more and more Dragons with each second that passed. The invaders did their job with haste and seemed to do it with no problem whatsoever which very much worried Iris. She snapped out of her surreal state and looked around. Iris continued to watch from a distance, still tucked in the tree while remaining undetected by anyone.

    They all kept their eyes trained on the dirty brown-haired, rough-looking man that stood before them. His sly, despicable eyes were a clear window that showed how vile he was. Standing next to him was a short bluish-black Pokémon that barred knife-life claws. The most fear-striking thing about it was its simple gaze from the equally as sharp eyes along with the rather cold and sinister grin it wore.

    Near them was a large, black truck. It had a caged backside that held many Pokémon. Iris couldn't make out what Pokémon they were specifically but she knew without a doubt that the captured Dragons were just as helpless as the villagers were or else they surely would have freed themselves by now. She was tempted to try and get close to the truck, but she didn't want to risk it in this situation.

    "Old man, just give it up. Be honest with yourself, you're in no position to be trying anything. This village of yours is practically defenseless. I just want to gather what I came for to my heart's content with no interruption," the intimidating thief boomed.

    Iris shuddered as she knew very well how right the man was. There weren't many powerful trainers in the village since chosen Dragon trainers went on their journeys at a certain age. That in itself left the village pretty defenseless and at a disadvantage for possible attacks. Standing opposite the man was Ryuu, who sported a livid expression.

    "My age does not matter. You are to leave this village at once!" Ryuu yelled loudly, which caused one of the thieves to cringe. "Don't think I won't do what I have to in order to protect this village!"

    "We'll leave when we've collected what we need," the thief continued to protest.

    "Leave my village, poacher!" The man demanded with more animosity. The dark-clothed man smirked, seeming unfazed by Ryuu's anger.

    "I'm Baron and I like to think of myself as more of a businessman than a lowly poacher," he introduced himself arrogantly.

    "I see you're ready to face punishment for causing so much turmoil toward my home!" Ryuu took a look at the Weavile that stood next to its trainer.

    "Big words, big words. That's all I hear, I know very well how the Dragon Village is known for having few strong trainers. An old dinosaur like you is not one of them," Baron tormented childishly, which elicited a grimace from Ryuu.

    "You leave me no choice!" Ryuu pulled out a ping pong-sized ball. Pressing a button in the middle of the metal orb, he gave it one toss into the air. A large stream of energy flowed from the red-and-white, metallic sphere. It took shape and formed a bulky, light-orange body. The creature possessed muscular arms and legs, each end of both arms were equipped with three claws. The small blue-greenish and yellow wings on the Pokémon's back didn't look threatening in the slightest, the same could be said for the small horn on his head alongside two wobbly thin antennae. The Pokémon was none other than Ryuu's partner, Dragonite.

    Iris knew it all too well. She would sometimes watch Ryuu and the Dragon Pokémon train together. Seeing Dragonite fueled her dream of one day having her own powerful, large Dragon. Once again though she remembered raising and evolving Dragon Pokémon in-general has always been talked of as if it was a difficult test.

    "You gotta be pretty gutsy to even send out a Dragon-type against an Ice-type," the man hissed. "We brought these choice of Pokémon here with the intent of defeating Dragons easily."

    "You'll be surprised at the power of a hard-trained Dragon. Now use Dragon Claw!" The Dragon Pokémon dove at Weavile with his murderous claws glowing a bluish hue.

    "Make ready to evade it then strike with Ice Shard."

    "Wea," the Pokémon concurred. Weavile stood calmly and waited for its enemy. It made a near effortless jump, just in time to evade the charging Dragonite. The Sharp Claw Pokémon held out its claws as a chunk of ice formed and was thrown at Dragonite, who fled to the skies, only to have his back pelted by the attack.

    Dragonite struggled to stay airborne after taking a doubly strong move to his backside. Ice Shard was a certain type of move that was known for its remarkable speed, always being able to strike first and fast. Baron was extremely surprised by Dragonite's endurance.

    "That Dragonite is still flying!?"

    "Humph!" A loud roar came from Ryuu. "You've never battled a Pokémon with 'Multiscale' have you? Due to a thick coating of scales around Dragonite's body he can stand up to any move, even Ice-type ones! It's especially a useful ability when Dragonite's fresh!" Iris smirked seeing Baron was unfamiliar with the ability that few Dragonite had, allowing them to take attacks more effectively than they normally would. How Ryuu managed to obtain a Pokémon with such a rare ability, Iris didn't know. Managing to find one almost seemed like something she could only do in a dream.

    "Who cares?" Baron was visibly flustered. "No matter, I'll take your Dragonite too then."

    "Stay strong!" Ryuu encouraged his Pokémon. "Show them your power with Thunderbolt!" The Dragon Pokémon's antennae built up with electricity and delivered a blast of thunder toward Weavile. The Pokémon instinctively evaded the attack with grace, making Iris marvel at what formidable speed it wielded.

    "Ice Beam!" Weavile created an azure ball of ice on its mouth and directed the steady stream of chilling blast towards Dragonite. The Dragon Pokémon was just lucky enough to evade the super-effective attack in a split second. Ryuu was happy to see his fellow protector dodging the move without having to be told.

    "Thunderbolt, once more!" Ryuu shouted. Dragonite swiftly generated a powerful blast of electricity again. The Sharp Claw Pokémon reacted by once again evading the attack just in time. This made Baron more confident, much to Ryuu's annoyance.

    "Isn't that agility just amazing? I trained him myself to reach that level of speed. Now Weavile, use Blizzard!" this time his Pokémon conjured a huge ice storm-like blast of wind directed toward Dragonite and struck the Dragon Pokémon's chest which caused him to howl in pain from the subzero attack that made him crash onto the ground. Dragonite did his best to regain his composure.

    "Get up Dragonite!" Ryuu encouraged the large, light-orange Pokémon. Ryuu's Dragonite had been in many tough spots so was known for his undying will to persevere, especially when given verbal support.

    "Ice Beam, again!" Baron was sure that the blast of frozen power was finally going to take down Dragonite.

    "Try this Baron, Flamethrower!" A hot blaze trailed toward the Ice Beam, causing a slight cloud to fill the air as the Ice Beam collided with the Fire-type move. Many sprinkles and bits of water showered Weavile, making the Sharp Claw Pokémon and ground around it wet.

    "There's no running this time!" said Ryuu who then proceeded to tell his Dragonite to use Thunderbolt. Weavile had no time to react as it was promptly zapped by the powerful electricity with the water conducting the move. It was a clever trick Ryuu learned to use against his opponents in his younger days which worked wonders.

    Sparks surged off Weavile's damaged body. The Sharp Claw Pokémon was no tank and Baron wasn't comfortable with seeing it take such a powerful attack. Weavile couldn't stand up because of the power of the attack. Baron grunted with anger. With slightly clouded judgement he gave a temperamental command in an attempt to end things fast.


    "Nail it with Ice Punch!" Weavile used its remaining strength to bound into the air with a fist that shined with blue energy. Ryuu was quick to seize the opportunity though.

    "Ascend, then dive, and end this with Fire Punch!" Dragonite's fist was pumped with strong heat as he jetted off and then dive-bombed the Sharp Claw Pokémon.

    In the climax of the battle, both moves clashed and brought forth a monumental explosion of power. Fire Punch overpowered Ice Punch and when the smoke cleared it showed a very exhausted and senseless Weavile while Dragonite continued to stand proudly. Iris smiled with glee watching the Dragon Pokémon make fairly short work of Weavile with only two attacks.

    "But, how did...?!" Baron was stupefied.

    "Dragons are the strongest Pokémon there are, you should have been more cautious. Let's take care of the poacher, Dragonite. I want him!" Ryuu wasn't joking as his Dragonite was making ready to bolt toward Baron.

    "Don't think that I've given up yet!" the man said with slime in his voice. Iris and the other villagers paid close attention to Baron who motioned toward two men standing and guarding the truck. The grunts proceeded to open the cage, the sound of Poké Balls being opened drew in Iris's attention.

    A pink, regal Pokémon stood near the cage, it put its hands on its large crown-like rock helmet, both eyes glowed light blue. Standing near the pink Pokémon was a brown, tall Pokémon, its whiskers were quite long. It held two spoons in its three-fingered hands, as if they were weapons. The spoons and its eyes took on a blue tone. Two large creatures were forced out of the caged truck violently.

    The aroma of fresh blood was the first thing that struck Iris's attention, the scent was intoxicating, even in the faraway tree. As both of the creatures came into view, Iris could only look on sorrowfully at the two Pokémon. Their ferocious, pale, yellow irises were filled with absolute hatred and pain. Hatred for Baron and what was being forced upon them. The Cave Pokémon certainly looked like they had seen better days.

    Their red-spiked, blue-scaled bodies were whipped in various areas. Some bare flesh showed from the abuse they suffered, their wings were slashed in a few places as well. The sight nearly triggered the young girl's gag reflex as her skin crawled.

    Baron grabbed a long whip and pulled it back and, with much force, slung the vicious cord onto the backside of one of the Druddigon. This caused the attacked Pokémon to holler in pain. Iris looked down when it made contact and cringed with her eyes shut, it was as if nails were being forcefully scratched on a chalkboard. She could tell the female Druddigon was struggling to hold back the tears that threatened to flood her face. With each whipping the Druddigon received the image was permanently burned into her mind.

    "Halt your attack and I'll stop whipping these poor, poor Dragons. Your move old man," Baron tormented. "The Dragons here are pretty weak if they can be subdued this easily."

    Whipping and mocking the Dragons only got Iris worked up. Ryuu called his Dragonite back to his Poké Ball and remained silent. Baron nodded to the two Psychic Pokémon.

    They gave a little more force into their combined Psychic attack, forcing the two Druddigon to their knees as Baron delivered another awful whipping to the male Druddigon this time which caused the creature to lifelessly blackout. Iris nearly yelled out, as if she felt the Cave Pokémon's pain herself, but quickly covered her mouth in fear of having attention drawn to her.

    "Alakazam, Slowking," Baron said the names of the Psychic-types once as they instinctively packaged the two Druddigon back into the cage. "It's been nice doing business with you, remember if you try anything. They'll die," Baron said, coldly yet, jokingly as if it was a game. This angered Iris even more.

    "Here's a lesson people of the Dragon Village!" Baron screamed. "The easiest and best way to tame Dragons is by force. You just need to be rough enough and you can accomplish the supposedly hard feat of taming a Dragon beast with ease. This is why your precious village falls short, it's too soft. You make creatures like these out to be friends, Dragons have the potential to be extremely savage creatures. You don't take advantage of that but don't worry I'm sure the new owners will enjoy having such Pokémon. Understanding their hearts? Don't make me laugh."

    "I held up on my part, now leave!" Ryuu shouted, disgruntled.

    "Tommy, go get the truck ready!" Baron motioned to one of his men, not caring about Ryuu anymore.

    "O-Okay sir!" The bumbling, blond young man ran up to the truck, stumbling on the way there and tripping. The rather pale-skinned man fell on his face. "Sorry, Baron!"

    He apologized while timidly getting on his feet. The rather new member of the gang of poachers had only joined recently, his rather eccentric, awkward personality usually gave Baron a headache in more ways than one, despite his attempts at doing his job well.

    "How did he get mixed in with those guys?" Iris wondered as she got a small amount of enjoyment at the incompetent grunt's expense.

    "Tommy, you dumbass!" Baron yelled to the buffoon of a grunt with zero sympathy. Putting the inefficient behavior aside Baron walked up and got into the passenger's seat as Tommy was stationed in the driver's seat. The leader of the poachers decided to leave some parting words to make Ryuu and the villagers feel even worse.

    "I bid you a farewell pathetic village!" Baron shouted from the window as he took off with the rest of the men latching on from the rear and sides of the vehicle.

    "I'm not letting them get away!" Iris yelled, still steaming from with anger about what he did to the Druddigon. She gave chase after the truck once she climbed down the tree. She couldn't keep up but did her best to follow. Swablu followed as well, not willing to let her go alone.

    -:-

    "Is everyone alright?" Ryuu announced, attempting to comfort everyone as they all were still shaken up from what just happened. The group of people talked among themselves and tried their best to reassure themselves of what had just had happened.

    "Everyone is okay Ryuu. We're all okay!" One man said aloud.

    "But, the Dragons aren't," a feminine voice spurted.

    "Now, now. We will do something about the Dragons, but this will take time," Ryuu announced. "I have to know for sure that everyone is fine."

    "Daddy! Daddy! I just checked around, Iris is missing!" Mira came running up, completely out of breath.

    "What! What do you mean, Mira?!" Ryuu asked.

    "I'm saying that I think Iris left in pursuit of the poachers who took the Dragons! I checked the forest area she usually plays in when those poachers showed up! She's not there! Shelgon said he saw her leave a little while back! I think she went after the poachers, it's just like her to do something like that!"

    "The girl whose ancestors were responsible for ending the great strife between Dragons and humans," Ryuu said frustrated. "We cannot beat those men with only a few strong Pokémon at our side, the numbers have been lessened even more because they took some of the village's strong wild Dragons. They might not have been under anyone's ownership, but they protected our village. Iris is letting her anger go to her head instead of patiently waiting for help to come!"

    "What are we going to do?!" Mira asked with tears in her eyes.

    "I'm going to ask for help from a strong trainer who trained here years ago, he's become quite the remarkable battler from what I've heard. I'm going to call Drayden in the Unova Region!"
    Last edited by Bubble Frog; 24th February 2013 at 07:25 PM.

  2. #2
    Clarion of Revelations Feliciano's Avatar Social Media Editor
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    Default Re: The Girl Who Knows the Hearts of Dragons - Ch. 1 - The Village of Dragons

    I know this isn’t really part of your story, but BW2 isn’t out in America yet, and I was trying not to spoil myself :/ So thanks for spoiling that the Champion isn’t the same. Also, I’m kind of just jotting down notes and questions as I go, so forgive me if this seems a little disjointed at first.

    Right off the bat, I’m not sure we need such a large introduction. Given where you’re posting this, I think you can safely assume that your readers know how type matchups, STAB, and gyms work. If you want to put in an introduction, try something that focuses on the power, majesty, and strength of dragon types and their mysterious nature, and then move on to explaining the strong bond that dragon types form with trainers they deem worthy to fight alongside. Then you can set up the town that loves dragons so much. However, I think you could do just fine cutting the intro entirely.

    If she is swinging from vines in a forest, I think it’s a pretty safe bet that she spends her time differently than other girls in her village. No need for that sentence; just say “unlike the other girls, who never strayed from the village, she preferred to play with the forest pokemon”

    How do eyes “bustle”?

    Like I said last time, it sounds really awkward to write out the pokemon’s name again and again as its dialogue. Just say “the vigoroth screeched” or “the vigoroth was clearly tiring.”

    You don’t make a grin, you give it.

    Poor Vigoroth :/ This girl doesn’t seem to care about pokemon at all if she lets her playmates slam into a branch face-first. Also, your transition from them playing to her leaving could be smoother. Make it more noticeable; give it its own paragraph, and mention something about time passing by when she finally said goodbye.

    Several well-worn shortcuts, maybe? Several familiar shortcuts?

    Who allows an eight year old to play alone in a forest and swing from vines with wild animals?

    …If I keep pointing out every inconsistency and awkward sentence I find, I’m gonna be here until dawn. So I’m just gonna leave you with one major piece of advice: concentrate on the flow of your sentences. Read them aloud – if they sound wrong, they probably are. Have a beta go through and read your chapters before you post them – sometimes, other people will catch typos or grammar that you might miss. I give all the chapters of my fic to Ryu before I post them for just that reason.

    Other than that, it seems a fairly promising start. You took a while to get to the action, but once you got there you jumped straight in and presented an immediate conflict. One last thing I was confused on, though. If this place isn’t what will become Opelucid City and isn’t in the Unova region, where is it? Is it supposed to be Blackthorn City? An original location? What?
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  3. #3
    J'ai Envie De Toi AetherX's Avatar Moderator
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    Default Re: The Girl Who Knows the Hearts of Dragons - Ch. 1 - The Village of Dragons

    Review time! Rather than my usual style of separating the breakdown from the specific responses, I'm going to put them together. What does that mean you have to do? Absolutely nothing!

    PLOT: Before I start, I should probably let you know what exactly my idea is of an ideal plot (because opinions often differ). I'm sure you're familiar with the basic parts of a plot line, but there are four that I consider to be the most important: the introduction, the turning point, the climax, and the conclusion. In the perfect story, all four of these things would blow my mind a million different ways and make me jump up and down with excitement. Since I'm only reviewing the introduction, however, everything else will have to wait. At first I thought that you were going to take a while (ie not this chapter) before the shit hit the proverbial fan. I was wrong, which just goes to show that you did a good job in jerking me along. That said, the whole poacher bit wasn't as mind blowing as it could have been. It isn't an original concept for starters, though that hardly matters (we're here writing FANFICTION hurrdurr), and although it was fairly well done, I wasn't really dragged into the story. The battle was great (I honestly wasn't sure who would win, though I would have been pissed if a Dragonite lost) and the situation gripping, but I feel the fact that I've seen this before kind of made me detached.

    Anyway, I'm interested to see where the story goes (and I suppose that's all that matters in the introduction), because I honestly can't tell. Will Iris get her rear end handed to her? Will she go straight onto a journey with trusty Swablu by her side? Will she return to the village?

    Oops, I almost forgot. the little prelude bit in italics at the beginning... It wasn't 100% necessary to the story, but I thought it was cool. If there's any criticism I have, it's to stick with describing the majesty and power of dragons and avoid the technical side. Like Feli said, we already know most of that stuff and it kind of ruined the flow. Like this:

    Each type has its advantages and disadvantages against other types. This allows there to be balance for Pokémon when they engage in contests of strength, technique, and athleticism known as "Pokémon Battles". These battles between Pokémon are considered to be a popular sport that is enjoyed by all ages. In Pokémon battles, there are people who command their Pokémon to utilize their moves against other Pokémon. These people who partake in this sport are called "Pokémon Trainers".

    There are trainers and people who favor some types of Pokémon over others. Facilities called "Pokémon Gyms" specialize in one type of Pokémon in order to test trainers. When a trainer beats the "Gym Leader" of a Pokémon gym, they will be awarded a "Gym Badge" that could be used to enter the "Pokémon League" of the region the gym is in.
    That's a little too "The World of Pokemon"-ish, and we've heard it all before. The story focuses on Iris and dragon-types, and so should the prelude. Moving on...

    CHARACTERS: I have to say, you did an excellent job with the characters. Within the first half of the chapter we already knew what Iris looked like, how she spent her time, and several important character traits including strengths and weaknesses. The best part about this was that you did it through showing and not telling (with some exceptions). Iris is a great character, and I'm intrigued to see how she'll flesh out even more over the course of the story. We don't know much about her past, or how she reacts when confronted a little more directly with a situation like the poachers. Ryuu is obviously the mentor character. You again did a great job of fleshing out who he is and what he's like without forcing it down our throats. Again, I'm intrigued to see how he'll develop. Mira's a decent supporting character. She needs to be elaborated on a little more, but I can't really expect perfection in the first chapter. She seems to bring out a slightly different side to Iris, and I believe that is what supporting characters are for. To think, those were just the protagonists!

    As for the baddies, Baron seems ruthless and kind of arrogant, a typical villain. Tommy seems like he'll be important, and again does a great job supporting "his" main character: Baron. They're both a little cookie-cutter for my taste, but I'm sure more chapters will spice them up (SO MANY FOOD METAPHORS).

    Well done on characters overall, I'm sure Drayden is going to be fun.

    WRITING: I tend to divide this category up into two parts: technical (grammar, capitalization, spelling, typos, etc.) and creative (description, dialogue, etc.). You pretty much nailed the first part. If there were any technical errors, I didn't notice them and therefore they didn't take away from the story (or worse, completely yank me out of my immersion). Your description was also excellent.The combination of metaphors and a spattering of adjectives made for quite the robust world. Not too over the top, but far from minimal. The dialogue was passable. Nothing really memorable, and no unique voices. It wasn't bad, but it was far from outstanding. What could you do to improve? Give each character a voice. The way an eight year old Iris talks will be quite different than the way Ryuu talks. She'd probably use shorter words and make lots of exclamations. Just an idea.

    Anyway, your main problem stems from in between those two parts. I don't want to say that your writing is flowery (because it isn't), but I guess the best word to use would be "wordy." I think Feli nailed it when she mentioned word choice. Let's take a look at some examples.

    The light coming from the bright sun shined down on the forest's trees where a young girl was swinging from vine to vine. This wild child used her free time differently from all the other young kids who also lived in the nearby "Village of Dragons". Unlike the others, who never really strayed too far from the village, she preferred to play in the forest.
    Feli mentioned this, so I figured I'd bring it up too. The second and third sentences are telling us pretty much the same thing. It doesn't make sense to repeat it. We're all guilty of this mistake, but that doesn't excuse it.

    Being a student under him for nearly a year now, Iris became more and more wary of being on time for his classes. Unfortunately, the distractions that surrounded her sometimes prevented her from being on time. Ryuu's classes were intriguing at times and a lot of the time uninteresting, but she had a great amount of respect for the man and understood his wishes. He always told her that the things he taught her would be of much value when she would become a trainer one day. She looked at the woman, giving a sincere expression.
    Read the bolded piece aloud. Doesn't that sound weird? When you say "and" it feels like you're about to elaborate on the first thought, but then you just mention the opposite. Do you know what I mean? That's what "buts" are for. Let's try reworking this:

    "Ryuu's classes could be quite intriguing, but were often uninteresting."

    Of course, that's the way I write, so it wouldn't be the same if you did it, but I hope you get what I'm saying. I know making that a sentence on its own would throw off the structure of the paragraph, so let's look at what we'd do to fix that. Here's what I would say after the above sentence:

    "Despite that, she greatly respected the man and understood his wishes."


    See how I got rid of a lot of words? "had a great amount of respect for" sounds more natural as "greatly respected." Gotta love verbs. Speaking of which, the last sentence in this selection doesn't need the second verb. Like I said before, it's too wordy.

    "She looked at the woman with a sincere expression."

    Maybe the reason you didn't do it this way in the first place was because now it could be construed as Iris looking at Mira, who has a sincere expression. Personally, I think the reader would get what you were talking about, but that's up to you. All of the above "corrections" could take away from your own unique way of writing, but I urge you to keep them in mind in the future. As soon as you become aware of how many extra words you're using and how it can interrupt the flow, you're sure to find a way around it that keeps your writing style intact.

    OVERALL: It's an enjoyable story, and a quality first chapter. Work on not repeating yourself and using less words to get your point across. Less is more, after all! Keep on building up your characters and I'm sure they'll be top notch throughout the story as they are here. I look forward to a little bit more plot development in the next chapter. Excellent job!

    *****

    I tend to rant a little bit in my reviews, sorry.

  4. #4
    Lost Time Memory Flaze's Avatar Moderator
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    Default Re: The Girl Who Knows the Hearts of Dragons - Ch. 1 - The Village of Dragons

    I can't give a long review, I'll warn you about that to start things up.

    Well overall I think that it's a pretty good beginning, the chapter gave us a bit of knowledge of Iris's past, and I assume that this village is an original town that you yourself created cause otherwise you could've called it by name.

    One of the things I noticed is that you seem to change the events very quickly, one minute Iris is doing something and then she's doing something else the next with little transition for it. You've got a few typos here and there but it's nothing too big all you need to do is reread but hey, I shouldn't talk now should I.

    Hm...other than that I'm just wondering about where this will go, if you're really basing it off on BW2 then the conclusion is your goal, how she will reach that point depends on how you write though.

    Yeah I'm not as good a reviewer as the two above me but all I can say is that you did pretty good, just focus on what they're telling you and work on your story more and I'm sure that everything will work out fine.

  5. #5

    Default Re: The Girl Who Knows the Hearts of Dragons - Ch. 1 - The Village of Dragons

    Read this, and here's my comments and what I got from it.

    - I like the introduction, bloating the dragon type and stuff. It really sets the mood for the story, even if the everything else does more than enough building up for the type.
    - Mira has a weird way of showing kindness. Cruel to be kind, feh. :P So I'm guessing she's like an older sister figure?
    - as if she was truly a student watching a seminar take place ~ This line felt kind of odd. Because well, she is pretty much a student watching a seminar take place.
    - I like how you make baby Pokemon care a lot more intricate. What I don't like - although this is just me ragging on the media and not on you - is how eggs just magically take the shape of their Pokemon. A newborn's a newborn, I suppose.
    - For an eight-year-old, Iris shows a surprising amount of focus and determination. But at the same time, it feels she has just the right amount of youthful inattentiveness and (to paraphrase her own words) just-being-a-kid.
    - You'd think the Village would be able to foresee such a problem arising and thus leaving at least one person on duty, but I guess not.
    - But hey, Ryuu manages anyway. It's a nicely written battle, and again shows off more of the dragons 2 stronk point.
    - The Black Baron. Pretty brutal guy, even towards his own subordinates it seems.
    - So Iris' ancestors stopped dragons and humans from fighting? Interesting.

    In short, it's a great start. Looking forward to reading the next chapter of this, particularly seeing how you'll handle The Spartan Mayor himself.
    Don't know what to put here.

  6. #6
    Not A Piece of Cake Bubble Frog's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Girl Who Knows the Hearts of Dragons - Ch. 1 - The Village of Dragons

    A/N: Chapter 2 is finally here after an extremely long interval of time, nearly four and half months since the last update. That's just so unallowable, I apologize for that since I've actually had a few people contact me regarding the fic.'s current status and when Chapter 2 would finally be released. I'm actually fairly surprised that I wasn't able to get it out sooner, but I'll make sure to never have a gap that monstrous again. Not to mention, the 'real world' got in my way since I've been busy with the holidays, football conditioning training, and other lame excuses. Without further ado here it is. No the title is not a spelling error, it's meant to be a pun/reference.

    @Chiplet; @Tsutarja; @Soulmaster;


    Chapter 2 Dragon Tails



    “Damn, where is it?!”

    The firmly built, spacious clinic was in shambles. The man had tossed around various objects in his erratic searching. He desperately pursued the guide, knowing that it, as well as the person it would lead to, might ultimately end up being Iris's salvation.

    A sweaty, headache-consumed Ryuu muttered unintelligible words under his breath as he yanked out a drawer with little force. This caused a variety of papers to take flight around him. The frustration the man felt was an intoxicating mixture of anxiety and exhaustion. He thought back several times to the day’s incident and replayed the same scenario in his head. The poachers were ruthless to say the least.

    "I found the map!" Mira yelled, much to the surprise of Ryuu. His daughter handed him the raggedy paper and he hastily grabbed a Poké Ball. After he enlarged and tossed it, a bang of energy flooded from the capsule and Dragonite appeared. Ryuu held out the map so the Dragon could get a good view of it.

    “This is the Unova Region, find this man in this place.” Ryuu showed the map as well as a picture to the fully-grown Pokémon. The Dragon analyzed the two illustrations for a few more minutes as Ryuu did his best to explain their current situation to him in a rushed but understandable manner.

    “Is this really the best way?” Mira asked half-heartedly.

    “A Dragonite’s intelligence can match or exceed that of a human’s and Dragonite in-general are known for having exceptional speed,” Ryuu proclaimed as Dragonite bolted toward the door and took flight, flying at what seemed to be so fast that his speed could reduce a jet to an envious mess.

    Having done everything he could to help Iris at this point, Ryuu had no choice but to leave it up to faith from this point on. The man took a seat on the couch sitting near the commons area, his head throbbed with pain from his headache. He felt mentally and physically drained from the day and it was no secret to Mira there was a gray cloud of guilt, frustration, worry, and depression that hung overhead.

    How was Iris doing? What was she doing? Was she hungry, scared, tired? Had she found the poachers? Had the poachers found her?

    Scanning the photograph he had shown to Dragonite, it detailed a person who reminded him of Iris in a way. The personality of a dreamer no doubt.

    “I have to rely on him for help.....” the respected man closed his eyes and relaxed for a few seconds, which gradually morphed into minutes. He felt nostalgic as he closed his eyes and dropped into a much-needed slumber.

    -:-

    It was sultry with the sun beaming in the clear, azure sky overhead. The great weather was something the sprawling Dragon Village was blessed with often. It gave a nice sense of peace to the once torn village that was sometimes called “Dragon Hell” for its past.

    A youthful man breathed calmly as a breeze of air swept through his blond hair, the lively guy wore his usual poker face in the heat of a challenge, height wise he was average compared to other Dragon Village fellows.

    Before him was a mostly blue-bodied, elegant serpent with two angelic wings in place of ears and a plain white underbelly. The majestic being did nothing but sleep peacefully in the midst of battle, probably the most appealing thing about the creature were the crystal, cerulean orbs on his tail and neck, the latter having one while the former being dual orbed. The miniscule non-threatening horn that jutted out of his head didn’t seem very lethal.

    Opposite the duo were an older man who was distinguished by his auburn hair and a lizard that seemed to possess a flame for a tail tip. The fire creature wobbled as it became clear its dark-red body was littered with several bruises that told the tale of a harsh battle that was going to end soon, but before that the trainer decided to give one last futile command.

    “Flamethrower!” the Flame Pokémon took a deep breath and showered the Dragonair in a hot power that completely enveloped him. As the flames died down they revealed Dragonair wasn't shaken in the slightest.

    The Dragon slowly opened his eyes and yawned. His trainer flicked a hand carelessly. A charge of lightning sent the Charmeleon flying twenty feet away, almost as if it was an insignificant pest being swatted. Much to the surprise of no one the Fire-type did not stand back up.

    “You make it look easy.” The other trainer said while returning the unconscious Charmeleon to its Poké Ball and grunting in slight frustration.

    “Thanks,” Ryuu patted Dragonair on his head in gratitude.

    “I actually thought that battling against you would push Charmeleon toward evolution. It was an interesting battle at least,” the trainers exchanged handshakes before parting ways.

    “Let’s battle again soon,” Ryuu returned Dragonair to his Poké Ball as he stared up at the sky and took notice to the flock of bird Pokémon that flew overhead. The day was as lively as always and the unchanging aura of the village was something he was accustomed to.

    He would wake-up, eat, and train, sometimes finding trainers to face off against. Time would be spent researching different plants, as a striving self-proclaimed “Dragon Doctor” he would often experiment with many different herbs.

    Today was no exception, he spent the day examining various greenery, only taking a break to battle a passerby. While searching, none of the plants gained his interest, so he looked a bit harder.

    The man took a detour around his usual spot and winded up near a clearing after a quarter of a hour. Nothing stood out about the place, it was a normal natural area.

    As he spent the better half of an hour examining the place, he came upon something peculiar. In the distance he made out two figures rolling around together on the ground, seemingly fighting. He moved in closer to get an earful of what they were saying.

    A maturing male voice growled, the brown-gray haired child had the creature in a headlock. His plain white t-shirt had been slightly ripped from the bout which showed off his pale skin that eluded the sun’s tanning rays. It wasn’t hard to tell that the boy worked out daily as he was decently built for his size and was contending against a wild Pokémon.

    “Fraxure!” The reptilian, forest-tinted Pokémon with tusks that seemed nearly as long as a yardstick tried to shake free of the boy’s grip as he flailed around. The human adversary drew back his fist and made ready to send it into Fraxure’s red-speckled gut, but the Pokémon threw the boy off of him in the nick of time. The Dragon-type took the opportunity to put a licking on his opponent, but the boy evaded the kicks and punches that were thrown his way.

    Fraxure smirked as he sneakingly swiped his left foot near the boy’s leg, causing him to momentarily lose his balance. This was enough for the Fraxure to force all his weight on the adolescent and keep him firmly planted to forest floor. Fraxure had a desperate look in his eyes as it made ready to pound the young man before Ryuu pulled out a Poké Ball and strided over with a yell.

    “Stop!”

    Fraxure and the kid both looked over toward Ryuu, taken off guard by the sharp scream.

    “Dragona-” Ryuu made ready to release his Dragon starter, once more, before he clumsily fell to the ground in his haste, dropping the Poké Ball as well.

    “Are you okay?” The boy and Fraxure both bolted over to a disoriented Ryuu lying on the ground. The Tusk Pokémon helped the man back up to his feet as he coughed in slight pain. Ryuu straightforwardly asked though.

    “Why were you fighting?!”

    “That was training.”

    “What the....” Ryuu didn’t finish his sentence, slightly embarrassed at the huge brouhaha he had made over supposed training.

    “We wrestle in order to train with each other, that’s how it’s always been. People usually think we’re fighting seriously though. I’m Drayden by the way and this is my Fraxure.”

    “Fraxuuu,” the Pokémon introduced himself with a comical salute. Ryuu turned several shades of pink as he went over and scouted for his Dragonair’s Poké Ball. He made sure to apologize once he walked back toward Drayden.

    “Well, sorry about that, you can go back to your training. I’m just here looking for some herbs.”

    “We’re calling it a day for now actually,” Drayden pointed his Poké Ball at the Tusk Pokémon and a beam shot at him, materializing the reptile into a red energy and sucking him back into the device. Drayden pocketed the orb. “What type of herbs?”

    “They’re green with a slightly darker tint near the bottom and leaf-shape and speckled with red tiny spots.”

    "You mean like those right there," Drayden said as he pointed to a nearby tree. Ryuu took notice to the unfamiliar accent of the boy.

    “Exactly,” the striving Dragon medic became somewhat elated, still visually embarrassed though, as he immediately walked over and picked a few pieces of the greenery and stored it in his medical pouch attached to the side of his hip.

    “You’re a medic and know this place, so you live in the Dragon Village?”

    “Yes, I do indeed.”

    “Good we can go together,” he tagged alongside the fellow, walking with purpose toward the village.

    “So, do you always train with your Fraxure like that?”

    “Fraxure is my starter, what better way to toughen him up?” Drayden said affectionately as he wiped a small amount of sweat from his forehead.

    “Such a weird way of training.”

    “Dragons are the strongest Pokémon there are, no reason to be light with their work-out. It’s good for a Pokémon and its trainers to go against each other and see who can win!” the boy scratched his small amount of facial hair. “I came to the Dragon Village to train against strong Dragons, but I haven’t come across many, so I decided to do our usual routine in the meantime.”

    “So, you’re looking for strong Dragons to battle?” Ryuu smirked while asking.

    “Yes, I’m hoping I’ll finally find something if I go to the village again. I went there a little while ago and I was disappointed in the pickings, wild wise and trainer wise.”

    “Well, the Dragon Village is growing back up.”

    “Meaning?”

    “Many skilled Dragon trainers leave the village at a certain age to start their journeys and only a choice few actually stay here to hone their skills. Wild wise, the Dragon population is on the road to recovery. The wild Dragons need time to raise the numbers.”

    “Oh, that’s a let-down,” Drayden exclaimed as he stretched his arms, “I was really looking forward to finding some strong trainers and Dragons here, guess I’m not gonna get that.”

    Ryuu hunched his shoulders, choosing not to answer as the two continued their trek toward the village. Ryuu’s gaze intercepted Fraxure’s Poké Ball which Drayden was wiping with his shirt.

    “So, your Fraxure is strong? I’ve never encountered a member of that line.”

    “Yeah, I got him in Unova.”

    “You’re from Unova? We don’t see too many Unovans here.”

    “Unova is my home region.” Drayden answered while the two continued their advance. “Opelucid to be specific, ‘time’s dividing line’ as many would sometimes call it. A city that respects history and values old things. Opelucid is simply amazing and I love that place, the legendary Dragons would be proud!” Drayden seeped with the type of enthusiasm that someone who had an intense passion for their home only exuded, something Ryuu could sympathize with as he absorbed the words.

    “Sounds kind of like what I think of the village, my unconditional care toward the Dragons and people of this village is what kept me planted here. I could have gone out on a journey and became a successful trainer by now, but I decided to stick to this place.”

    “So, you could have become a successful trainer? I thought you were merely a doctor?”

    “No, no, no. Drayden, I’m quite the battler if I do say so myself. I’m actually one of the best around these parts. Working alongside Dragons in medical settings and battling situations is my style and forte.”

    “Battle me then when we make it to the village.” Ryuu was taken off-guard, it never occurred to him to battle the kid.

    He was the type to not back down from a battle challenge so he blurted, “Okay, in the village.”

    -:-

    The two didn’t talk much further until they had finally made it to the Village of Dragons. Drayden and Ryuu swaggered into the Dragon Village, upon entry Ryuu was greeted by many different people, almost as if he was an idol. The Unova Region native was surprised at his new companion’s popularity, given his prior goofy behavior was less than something he expected from anything resembling a strong, respected trainer.

    The Dragon Village was like a boisterous town. Many children played, around and about people conversed amongst each other, the Pokémon were as lively as ever. Of course the village houses and homes stuck out as a bit peculiar to Drayden given the more wild style of some, whereas others simply looked like normal houses.

    “Well, this seems about right, don’t you think?” Ryuu put his palm to the ground and pulled a handful of grass from the earth. “Lively area we’ve got here. Since you’re the guest to my village, you may set the terms of the battle.”

    “Let’s make it a three-on-three match then,” Drayden pronounced.

    “Perfectly fine, more than doable,” Drayden and Ryuu took their respective places opposite each other. Some people gathered to watch the somewhat amusing battle take place between the young man and adult. The mood seemed tense as Ryuu sniffed the air and Drayden got psyched for his match. “My first one is this guy!” Ryuu tossed his Poké Ball into the air as a bulky, shelled, gray Pokémon appeared before Drayden.

    “Meet Shelgon,” Ryuu announced, “I’ll be leading with him.” Drayden took a look at the Endurance Pokémon and calmly pieced together a plan and assessed the situation, he readied a Poké Ball.

    ”What do I know about the opponent? I’m battling Ryuu. He’s one of the strongest in the Dragon Village, he’s using a Shelgon and most likely has more Dragons. It's a very defensive Dragon that can take attacks and persevere. With that it would be probably be best if I saved Fraxure for later, so in that case....."

    “Now is the moment of truth, Larvitar!” A green dinosaur-like creature appeared before Shelgon in a white burst of light, glaring down the Endurance Pokémon. The Pokémon kept his stare trained on Shelgon as he scratched his red chest and warmed up for the match.

    “Larvitar? Those are usually native to Johto, seeing one outside of its main region is pretty unlikely, and besides I was expecting to face off against a Dragon-type.”

    “I want to be a Dragon specialist, but at the same time Dragons are rare. It’s unrealistic to have nothing but Dragons.” Drayden explained, Larvitar moved his foot across the dirt like a bull Pokémon making ready to charge. “Larvitar might not be a Dragon-type but the species is draconic so that’s something to consider. He's no weakling.”

    “Well, let’s see if your words are true. Headbutt!”

    “Brace yourself and use Rock Smash!”

    Shelgon rushed Larvitar as the Rock Skin Pokémon pulled back a green fist, the creatures struck each other, engaged in a clash of physical strength. That same strength ripped both Pokémon apart violently. Ryuu decided to go for a more long-range attack this time.

    “Let’s use Flamethrower!” Shelgon spat a flurry of fire at Larvitar who steeled himself for the enviable hit, fortunately for him, Drayden was quick on the fly with a command.

    “Dig!” Larvitar drilled into the ground under him, completely evading the blaze, and appeared from under the earth near Shelgon with a vicious uppercut ready to strike. Drayden figured the underground offense would be the perfect answer to a slower Pokémon like Shelgon.

    “Iron Defense!” Shelgon glowed a silvery hue before taking on a more stoney texture, leaving the attack’s hit doing little more than nothing to Shelgon.

    “Offensive power may be the most popular when it comes to Dragons, but I think Defense gets the job done more efficiently.”

    ”Ryuu’s a defensive battler?" Drayden contemplated, his suspicions being confirmed. “Let’s use Dragon Dance!” Larvitar began to frantically move around in a rather peculiar pattern, the Rock Skin Pokémon notably had an increase in its muscle tone and size.

    “Power-raising move? How straight forward.”

    “Let’s try Stone Edge!” Larvitar jumped into the air as several rocks formed out of thin air around his body, like heat-seeking missiles each rock crashed into the slow Shelgon, who was pushed back by the Rock-type move. Shelgon made a small effort to dodge beforehand but was simply too burly a Pokémon to get away.

    “Not bad,” Ryuu complemented. “You might have done some damage, but we’ll be fine. Iron Defense, once more!”

    “Shellgonnn!” the Pokémon roared as its defensive capabilities were reinforced and strengthened, as evidenced by the more stony appearance of its body.

    “Headbutt!” Ryuu shrieked.

    “Dragon Dance, again! Then Rock Smash!” Larvitar once again raised his speed and offensive strength as he darted toward Shelgon and engaged in contact with the Endurance Pokémon, unlike before, Larvitar was slowly being overpowered and pushed back by the more rough-bodied opponent despite the smaller Pokémon digging in his heels to stay put.

    “You could power-up all you want, I’ll just answer with Iron Defense. Let’s finish it, Flamethrower at close range!” flames emanating from Shelgon's mouth were spat at Larvitar who had no time to get away and took the ferocious energy with bravery.

    “Larvitar, stay strong!”

    “While it is true Rock-types are good at sponging Fire-type moves, I think my Shelgon’s overall strength makes up for that. Send it flying with one powerful burst!”

    Larvitar was blasted away like a ragdoll. The Rock Skin Pokémon fell to a single knee as a blaring cry surfaced from the dinosaur-like Pokémon, having been engulfed in spontaneous flames out of the blue.

    “Burn?” Drayden commented, he knew burns had the effect of slowly chipping away at the opponent every once in awhile. It was having other effects on the Ground-type as a more aggressive expression and barbaric appearance took over the once calmer Pokémon. The creature’s body was bathed in a potent, red aura.

    “Larrrvviiiiiiii!” An ear-splitting roar surely woke-up Ryuu and any bystanders. .

    “Guts?!” Ryuu recognized the ability with ease.

    “It is Guts!” Larvitar seemed to feel rage at the burn inflicted upon him, he emanated a new found jolt of power. Ryuu was bent on not letting Drayden seize the opportunity to use the newly-spawned energy.

    “Shelgon, take it down with Headbutt before it lands an attack!”

    “Dig, quickly!” Larvitar burrowed underground, getting out of harm’s way before resurfacing and bolting toward Shelgon, a single kick sent the Endurance Pokémon rolling like a bowling ball.

    “No!” Ryuu screamed in horror as his rotund Dragon’s defenses were overcome by a simple hit. “Get it together and hit it with Flamethrower!”

    “Stone Edge!”

    Shelgon had stopped rolling by this point and conjured up another burst of flames for Larvitar, who sent a swarm of rocks through the Fire-type move with ease and impacted Shelgon hard, scoring a big hit and surely a large amount of damage in the process. The Endurance Pokémon could only stand for so long before collapsing like a brick house on the ground.

    “Good job, Larvitar.” Drayden exclaimed with a wholehearted smile as the Pokémon crossed his arms in superiority. Ryuu pointed a Poké Ball at Shelgon who was sucked back inside the portable capsule.

    “Amazing, though I had you in the palm of my hand until Guts activated. I won’t underestimate that Larvitar again, so I’ll pull out a big gun!” Drayden then remembered from Ryuu’s words that the battle was far from over, he had two more of Ryuu’s Pokémon to overcome if he truly wanted to call himself the winner.

    “I’ll be sticking with Larvitar, with Guts especially we have a huge chance at beating or seriously denting what comes next!” Drayden remarked.

    “Overconfidence.....” Ryuu replied and pulled out a blue Poké Bal,l two red marks on the top. Pressing a button to enlarge the sphere he shouted, “Come on out.”

    A ton of light exploded from the Poké Ball in an instant, transforming into a towering figure. The tan underbelly of the Pokémon was decorated with trillions of scales, the mostly blue body of the Pokémon swayed back and forth. The humongous serpentine Pokémon roared, more than ready to take on any opponent.

    Drayden couldn’t help but be slightly unnerved by the Atrocious Pokémon, especially since, as if to intimidate him further, the Dragon bared her fangs and solemnly licked its lips. The monstrosity in front of him was a more common Dragon that Drayden easily identified as a Gyarados.

    “You’re in a different ballpark, sure about sticking with Larvitar?” Ryuu taunted, Drayden knew Larvitar had a type disadvantage against the Water and Flying-type Pokémon, but the same could be said of Gyarados against Larvitar’s main Rock typing.

    Though Gyarados had the advantage of being a much larger opponent than Larvitar and fresher compared to the Rock Skin Pokémon who was somewhat tuckered out from the early bout against Shelgon. Drayden knew from his previous battle that Ryuu seemed to favor defense over straight-up power and speed but Gyarados seemed like a contradiction. Though he was gonna test that.

    “Okay, let’s go! Larvi-”

    “Larvi!” A shrill scream erupted from Larvitar as the Pokémon was surrounded by an outburst of fire. That reminded Drayden that he was under a timer when it came to using Larvitar, not only did the burns grant Larvitar serious power but it also ate away at the Pokémon’s health. Each of the burns would leave Larvitar worse for wear and certainly were going to add up.

    “A blessing and a curse isn’t it?” Ryuu threw his two cents in.

    “Use Stone Edge!” Drayden barked, Larvitar ran full-speed and jumped in the air as several powerful rocks formed around him and slammed into Gyarados’s face. The huge Pokémon cried out in pain, that attack only confirmed Drayden’s early notions that Ryuu’s Pokémon were made more for defense than evasion and speed in the way his were.

    Dodging for a large Pokémon like Gyarados would be hard anyway outside of water, she certainly wasn’t going anywhere. Drayden opted for another attack.

    “Stone Edge, again!” Ryuu screeched and pointed toward Gyarados.

    “Hydro Pump!”

    Gyarados blew through the rocks like nothing with a pump of water, the force smashed right into Larvitar who was free falling back to the ground. Larvitar did not get back up after the attack.

    “Things are even, nice job Gyarados.”

    The Rock Skin Pokémon lay on the ground before gaining his bearing and realizing he had lost the battle and hung his head in shame.

    “Don’t worry. You performed well Larvitar and fought courageously.” The boy returned Larvitar to his Poké Ball and Ryuu looked on questionably.

    “What was that about?”

    “Don't worry about that,” Drayden said sharply.

    “I see,” Ryuu analyzed the boy's tone. “Let’s move on.”

    The Unovan muttered to the defeated Pokémon’s ball, “You never felt like you could measure up to to them, this proved that you can.” Drayden pulled out another Poké Ball, this one containing a Dragon.

    “Now is the moment of truth, Druddigon!” Drayden attempted to match Gyarados with his biggest Pokémon, despite that they were nowhere even in size. The Cave Pokémon appeared in all its scale-covered glory and gave a bold menace at Gyarados, realizing his opponent was not something to underestimate. “Druddigon, let’s show Ryuu what strength is! Hit Gyarados with Dragon Rage!”

    “Dragon Rage as well,” Ryuu copied.

    Druddigon’s stomach seemed to take on a transparent hue as he charged and expelled a blast of energy from his mouth likewise the Gyarados who, with little effort, spat a sphere of crimson energy at the Cave Pokémon. Druddigon was quicker on the fly however and much stronger as Gyarados’s move was overpowered and the Atrocious Pokémon was struck.

    “I can tell this is gonna be a wild ride. Gyarados, Hydro Pump!”

    “Quickly Druddigon! Double Team!”

    As a familiar strike of water raced at Druddigon the Cave Pokémon made several copies of himself in time. The Hydro Pump hit one of the clones which caused it to disappear, though the other doppelgangers were actively keeping their eyes on Gyarados.

    “Enough of this! Blizzard!”

    “What?! Jump!” Drayden screamed in surprise.

    A internal-spawned blast of wind cleaned away all the fakes in mere seconds, leaving a small blanket of snow on the ground that melted almost instantly. The real Druddigon had leaped in the air to avoid the super effective move, an eager, somewhat sadistic grin from Gyarados told Drayden that Druddigon’s death warrant had been signed.

    “Finish with Dragon Tail.” The Gyarados’ tail came careening toward Druddigon, blindsiding the Cave Pokémon who smashed into the ground hard. Druddigon’s face looked shell shocked.

    “End this with Blizzard!”

    Gyarados purged another cruel, cold storm at the smaller adversary which not only knocked him out but fully froze the Cave Pokémon in a block of ice. Druddigon could not retaliate, let alone move.

    “Guess that’s it, Gyarados wins again.” Ryuu announced as Drayden returned Druddigon to his Poké Ball, still in awe of the sea serpent’s devastating power, it was going to take Drayden’s strongest to beat that thing. “I hope you realize why I’m one of the strongest villagers around, not to gloat but you’re going to have to come at me full force if you want to win.” Drayden realized it was going to take a fighter that could impose his pure will on Gyarados to win.

    “Gyaarrraa!” The beast roared in satisfaction.

    “What will your last Pokémon be?” Ryuu demanded.

    “My starter!" Drayden answered, "Fraxure, now is the moment of truth!” Drayden shouted his battle cry once more as the Tusk Pokémon appeared in front of the formidable beast. The experience Fraxure gained from training with Drayden since he was a wee Axew was more than enough to take on a Gyarados, Drayden had to remind himself this wasn’t just any Gyarados however.

    “Fraxure, it’s a very strong Pokémon, but any Pokémon is beatable! Don’t hold back, go all out!”

    “Let’s end this quickly with Hydro Pump,” Ryuu hollered.

    “Dodge it!” Fraxure evaded the blast of water in no time flat, a much more agile and faster Dragon than Druddigon was, this was what Gyarados was dealing with now. Drayden waited patiently as another fire of water jetted at Fraxure, his Pokémon could only dodge until Gyarados used a certain move.

    “Dragon Rage!” Ryuu got more conviction in his voice, as the same draconic energy flew at Fraxure who evaded once more. Gyarados was having a harder time nailing the much smaller, speedier target with a long-range attack. Ryuu opted for something a bit more accurate.

    “Dragon Tail!” Ryuu roared.

    “Catch that tail!” Drayden ordered Fraxure who stood his ground and tried to catch the violent tail, although he was successful, he skidded across the ground from the impact as he manhandled the gigantic attack. A stoic expression crossed Drayden’s face. “Counter!”

    Ryuu’s eyes bucked as Fraxure, veins popping, gave the tail a dynamic hurl toward the opposite direction, the Atrocious Pokémon was smacked cleanly in the face by its own tail causing the Gyarados to not only fall to the ground, but shriek in sheer agony. The results were clear to everyone as Ryuu returned the Atrocious Pokémon to her Poké Ball.

    “There’s no point in continuing Gyarados. You did a good job though.”

    “Nice job,” Drayden congratulated the Tusk Pokémon which made him hop up and down in joy like a giddy child. Either way Ryuu had Pokémon in possession with the manpower to put the powerful creature in its place. Fraxure’s confidence level rose slightly from being able to bring such a brute to its knees.

    “Good job Drayden, I have no doubt in my mind that Fraxure is strong. I mean using Counter which sends double the power of a physical attack back at the opponent? ” Ryuu fiddled in his pocket and pulled out a Poké Ball. “I think it’s time to really make you sweat, meet my ace. Dragonair, come on out!”

    Ryuu’s other serpent Pokémon made an appearance, Drayden steeled his demeanor as the Dragon Pokémon gave off a sense of superiority over the other middle-staged Dragon Pokémon in front of him. Fraxure and Drayden knew this was going to be no easy task, nor would it be like the previous battles that just occurred. Fraxure wasn’t fresh after being forced to take a Dragon Tail from Gyarados. It was going to be close so they had to take Dragonair down quick.

    “Start strong, Dual Chop!” Fraxure took off like a bottle rocket toward the serpent with both arms ready, Ryuu didn't order any evasive tactic nor attack, instead letting Dragonair get pummeled by the multi-hit move.

    Drayden simply took this lack of action as a sign of a slowness on Dragonair’s part, given Shelgon and Gyarados’s emphasis on bulk rather than speed, though Dragonair as a species weren’t nearly as slow as Gyarados or Shelgon.

    The elder trainer waved his hand, causing Dragonair to spit a stream of fire at the Tusk Pokémon, who suffered the cost of Drayden’s unawareness.

    “Fraxure!” Drayden cried out as if it was going to make a difference.

    “Speaking isn’t the only way to command a Pokémon. Some more advanced and experienced trainers will opt to use hand signals to command a Pokémon, there are even strong trainers who can connect with their Pokémon mentally and order attacks in that way.”

    Drayden was less than stellar at being lectured, but he knew in Ryuu’s words there was some knowledge, he wouldn’t make the mistake again. An idea popped into his head while his Fraxure was still within range of Dragonair.

    “Assurance!” Fraxure hopped near Dragonair’s face and gave him a swift kick to the cheek, the power of the Dark-type move got results as Dragonair cried out in pain. The Tusk Pokémon darted after striking his Dragon brethren. With Fraxure in-range of the serpent, it was practically begging to be attacked though.

    “Thunder,” Ryuu exclaimed as the bolt of lightning made a jagged path toward Fraxure.

    “Evade it!” Fraxure turned his head while running and sidestepped the electricity just in time, Drayden still didn’t understand why Dragonair was remaining stationary, though he was focused on his own Pokémon for the most part.

    “Flamethrower!” A blaze propelled at Fraxure, who instinctively dodged, knowing that’s what his trainer would have wanted, that small action elicited a smile from Drayden. When faced with an opponent like Dragonair speed would be key as well as the agility that Fraxure possessed. Ryuu decided to make Dragonair mobile.

    “Dragonair, go after Fraxure, get close and use Thunder!” The basilisk slithered at Fraxure in a vain attempt to catch him.

    “Dodge it, again!” The Tusk Pokémon somersaulted over the snake-like Dragon with ease. As Fraxure came free falling down Drayden had an idea. “Drop a Dragon Pulse!” Fraxure conjured a sphere of concentrated power and chucked the ball down on Dragonair, a small explosion ensued. “Dual Chop!” two powerful super-effective strikes to the noggin left the serpent howling in pain as Fraxure gracefully landed on the ground in a fancy pose.

    “Job well done Fraxure!” The boy thanked his Pokémon after his success with the continuous doubly strong attacks.

    “Indeed gravity seems to have been your friend in that instance and that was a nice job of linking up super effective attacks.” Ryuu was a good sport, but he knew that if Fraxure kept that up Dragonair was going to be history and that was apparent by the faltering reptile’s breathing pattern. Luckily for him, he had a strategy planned for this exact situation. “Rest!”

    “What?!” is all Drayden could say as he knew that move would undo every bit of damage Fraxure had dealt. The serpent simply closed his eyes and fell into a quick sleep, both males watched as Dragonair’s body seemed to begin its journey on the road to recovery in near microscopic time.

    “You still left yourself wide-open! Fraxure, finish Dragonair!” Fraxure made ready to attack until Ryuu interrupted.

    “That won’t work. Dragonair has an ability called ‘Marvel Scale,’ in times of turmoil within Dragonair's body its instantly ups his defensive capabilities. By turmoil I meant specifically things like status effects. You won’t scratch Dragonair.” Ryuu explained. “It’s a rare ability for a Dragonair to possess, but an amazing one. When Dragonair evolves, he’ll gain an even more rarer ability believe it or not.”

    “I don’t care!” Drayden shouted, Ryuu winced at the desperation that seethed from Drayden. “Dual Chop!” Fraxure was more than happy to comply as he sent both arms into Dragonair’s marvelous body rapidly.

    “See, it doesn’t do anythi-WHAT!” Ryuu watched as Dragonair was dented and bruised by the powerful blows.

    “You said before you’ve never battled a member of the Fraxure line, mine has an ability called ‘Mold Breaker’ meaning it can nullify the abilities of other Pokémon.” Drayden stated, Ryuu simply assumed the words before were pointless noise rather than having any true basis behind them. Ryuu watched as his guardian was beaten to pulp in his healing slumber.

    “Dragon Pulse!” Drayden continued to have the Tusk Pokémon land severe hits. Ryuu could only watch in a sense of forlorn. After a few more brutal moves, reality brought an even more battered Dragonair back into the world.

    Ryuu’s cautious state subsided somewhat, he was surprised to see his infamous ‘Rest + Marvel Scale’ combination fail him. Usually Dragonair was able to recover and wake up and would have regenerated more of his energy than his opponent would have dealt, effectively stalling his opponent out and being able to finish the more worn-out adversary with a few attacks.

    Ryuu had to defeat Fraxure then and there while he was close, he decided to call upon his Dragonair’s strongest move to get the job done.

    “Outrage!” Ryuu wailed, Drayden cringed at the mere mention of the move, knowing its destructive potential. The adolescent glared to his Fraxure as an out-of-control, demonic, red-eyed Dragonair charged the Tusk Pokémon.

    “You have to knock it out with Dual Chop before it lands a hit!” Fraxure got close, a fight of pure close combat began as Fraxure bobbed and weaved between each strike from Dragonair’s tail and smacked his opponent in an attempt to answer each hit he received. Both trainers encouraged their Pokémon as they shouted cheers at the top of their lungs.

    Fraxure fell face first to evade a strong jab from Dragonair’s menacing appendage, the Dragon Pokémon tried for another hit but Fraxure managed to roll out of harm’s way just in time. The Tusk Pokémon delivered one vicious punch to the snake Dragon’s stomach, but he was left wide open from a dazing headbutt in the meantime. Finally, after that hit the battle had reached its climax.

    “It’s over!” They both screamed simultaneously as their Pokémon landed lethal blows on each other. With thunderous swings, the match had been decided as both Pokémon had fallen, Dragonair looking extremely dazed.

    “A tie!” Ryuu said the obvious result aloud. The young adult had to snap himself back into reality as Drayden walked over to Fraxure and congratulated the Pokémon. Drayden enjoyed himself and Ryuu couldn’t believe he had tied against a kid from Unova and his Fraxure, only a strong trainer could give him a run for his money in that way. It was an amazing battle for both sides regardless.

    “You take a break for now, I bet you’re tired, still that was pretty impressive.” Drayden returned him to his Poké Ball, Ryuu did the same with Dragonair. Ryuu turned around to see some people coming over to congratulate him, he then looked around and took notice that the small group of people that were watching his battle had morphed in a sizable crowd. He sighed as Ryuu bashfully accepted the praises of the bystanders.

    “Drayden, that was a great match. You and your Fraxure worked hard and showed just how strong you are, against my Dragonair no-less.”

    “I probably would have lost if I......” Ryuu reworked his sentence, “Fraxure hadn’t brought down Gyarados with Counter.” Drayden sentimentally looked at his Fraxure’s Poké Ball.

    “So, why exactly do you battle besides having a lot of pride in your Dragons?” Ryuu asked the somewhat out-of-nowhere question.

    “I battle with purpose for the sake of development, for me and my Pokémon to be successes.” Drayden couldn’t resist the urge to smile weakly as he and Ryuu walked away. Just then he felt the Poké Ball in his pocket wiggle and wobble, Fraxure independently appeared in front of both guys, holding his knee in pain and slightly teary-eyed.

    “Looks like a minor knee injury, probably from our battle. I got a quick-fix for that though.” Ryuu pulled a leaf out of his pouch and popped it into his mouth, chewing it until it was a green, gooey texture. He bent down and applied the disgusting-looking substance to the Tusk Pokémon’s knee. “There, should be better in no time. I’ve been meaning to try out these plants. They’re herbs for sprains that really benefit scale-covered creatures.”

    “Thank you, Ryuu,” Drayden said as Fraxure climbed onto his back, he carried the injured Pokémon in piggyback style.

    “So, you can baby your Pokémon when you want to? That's pretty caring in itself....” Ryuu grinned, much to Drayden’s embarrassment. “And you’re welcome. Maybe one day you can repay the favor?” The young man said jokingly. The day died down as Ryuu and Drayden went to talk to the crowd of fans that spectated their battle, Drayden was going to be something strong someday and Ryuu could tell. Perhaps even stronger than him one day. The two continued to get congratulatory praise from the crowd.

    “Hey, Drayden, by the way, how old are you?”

    “I’m fifteen right now.”

    “So, back when you were little Poké Balls didn’t exist. Your Fraxure has stuck by your side since?”

    “Since I was young, like you said.”

    “I guess that shows your Fraxure truly loves and respects you, interesting!” Ryuu yawned loudly as he finished his sentence.

    “What are you gonna do now?” Drayden asked.

    “I want to go relax,” The older trainer stated flatly while rubbing his eyes.

    -:-

    A light tap on the shoulder awoke Ryuu from his nap as he looked up to his daughter. He was less on edge about everything, he was a bit sweaty though. His aged eyes stared into his daughter’s as he realized he had to have been asleep for a few hours.

    “Are you feeling better dad?” Mira asked with watered eyes, crying while he was asleep no doubt.

    “I’m fine Mira, just fine. Trust me, Iris will be saved. She’ll be okay,” Ryuu assured Mira as he got up to change into cleaner clothes.

    “Please....” Mira said as she tried to fight more tears.

    “Drayden will come...” Ryuu hugged Mira, not realizing just how wrong he was.

    -:-

    “Huuuuhhuuh,” Iris breathed heavily in the tree, she had done it, she had finally found those vile poachers and was looming near their campsite, Swablu stayed right near her. She spied the truck containing the purloined Dragon Pokémon from a distance. This was it, it now or never. She had to make her move.

    “I promised, I’d rescue you,” she chimed to herself.

    “Swablu,” the Pokémon cooed as he quietly patted Iris in apprehension.

    “No need to worry, I’ll be careful!” Iris gave Swablu an affirming thumbs up as she directed her gaze at the campsite once more.

    Guarding the cage was none other than the poacher from before, Tommy.
    Last edited by Bubble Frog; 24th February 2013 at 02:48 PM.

  7. #7
    Lost Time Memory Flaze's Avatar Moderator
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    Default Re: The Girl Who Knows the Hearts of Dragons - Ch. 2 - Dragon Tails

    First to Review.

    Anyways I had to reread parts of chapter one so that I could remember everything. The chapter was pretty good, even though it served as just a battle chapter it was still pretty good. I can tell you've gotten a lot better at writing battles than you were before and the way you used the moves was amazing as well.

    I don't have much to say except that it was weird to imagine a younger Rayden xD it's kind of hard to think of how someone as strict and serious looking as Rayden could've been when he was a teenager but it seems like he was pretty easygoing.

  8. #8

    Default Re: The Girl Who Knows the Hearts of Dragons - Ch. 2 - Dragon Tails

    Chapter 2, baby!

    - I guess an Extremespeed Dragonite is nothing special in your universe. :P
    - Ryuu doesn't seem very enthusiastic about asking Drayden to lend a hand. Although then again, his exhaustion could be giving me a false read there.
    - And Ryuu seemed to have a much different personality in the past as well.
    - Hm, always liked sprawling futuristic Opelucid better. That's just me, though.
    - I liked how Drayden went over his strategy in who to choose against a Shelgon. I do like the presentation of Ryuu as using defensive strategies (since their scales are nothing to scoff at), although I dunno about using the most obvious one to make it clear-cut. Still, it works.
    - No sending back to the ball on non-KOing Dragon Tail hits? Hey, fine by my rules! Maybe not by others', though.
    - Hand signals are ultimate swag way to give orders.
    - I was expecting Dragonair to have Sleep Talk as well, just because. Also, Mold Breaker. Ultimate troll ability. And the subsequent counterlecture when Drayden got to explain his Pokemon's ability and why Ryuu was so wrong - that was so good.
    - Eh, I'm on the fence about putting it forward right away that Drayden isn't coming. It works, but serves different a purpose - and I assume you are indeed going for the "oh shi-what are they gonna do when they find out?" as well as "why drayden, why?" angles.
    - All in all, it was an entertaining flashback chapter, in the end bringing us back to the present poised and ready to catapult into the action.

    In summary, I like the concept of how Drayden was a lot like Iris way back when. It is weird indeed, but somehow it seems somewhat fitting. Getting hype for a raid on the poachers' den! And wondering what someone like Iris will try and pull off.
    Don't know what to put here.

  9. #9
    Reader and Writer Legacy's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Girl Who Knows the Hearts of Dragons - Ch. 2 - Dragon Tails

    I love Mira. Reminds me of my older cousin. Great opening, really similar to the epic openings of the Pokemon Movies. Good description as well.

  10. #10
    Not A Piece of Cake Bubble Frog's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Girl Who Knows the Hearts of Dragons - Ch. 2 - Dragon Tails

    A/N:Huh, now look at that. Quick update was quick for once, well at least my definition of quick. Managing to get this mama out after posting the last chapter two weeks ago feels good, though it probably helps I had already written this chapter before releasing chapter two and I've mostly been cleaning things up for about a week before actually releasing this. After this chapter Drayden will finally appear in the story, which is good. Yes, this chapter gets a bit graphic at some points so I figured I should point that out since I've never written very violent scenes in any of my fanfics so that was new. Big events happen after this chapter just to let you know and it also establishes a critical moment in Iris's character.

    I also wanna say I'm very thankful for all reviews, comments, PMs, and compliments I've received about this fic. thus far. Nice to see people are enjoying it. Don't be afraid to drop a review or throw a little critique my way, I'm appreciative of both! Enough blabbering, here's chapter three!

    @Chiplet; @Tsutarja; @Soulmaster; @Human;

    Chapter 3 Waking Up on the Wrong Side of the Cage!



    The night was pitch black, the darkness surely would have enveloped the forest if not for the stars above that broke through the blackness. Iris was gazing from the tree down on the poachers’ campsite, she got a nice aerial view of everything around the area. Standing next to her, technically flapping, was a small white-and-blue bird Pokemon. He attempted to communicate, using gestures, over their current situation.

    “I can sneak over there, I just gotta be careful,” Iris whispered only for the Swablu to over dramatically gulp.

    The only thing standing in front of her was that incompetent poacher watching over the beasts, she was hesitant and had no one there to confide her feelings to.

    “He can’t be too dangerous,” Iris assured herself, “I mean did you see him today?”

    “Swa,” the Cotton Bird Pokémon replied in a supportive fashion.

    “I’m glad to have you here,” Iris exclaimed, giving a half-hearted smile.

    “Swablublu,” the Pokémon hugged her arm.

    “We still gotta figure out what to do though when we make it over there, maybe you could do something to distract him?”

    “Swaswaswa,” the tiny avian was definitely up to the challenge. It was going to be a critical move for them both, Swablu had been around Iris enough to realize that the girl could be quite the troublesome child and very impulsive. When she was determined to get the job done she truly was dead-set on her endeavor and usually clung to it like a maniac until she got a satisfactory result.

    “You can put him to sleep right?”

    “Swablu!”

    “Great, fly over there and put him to sleep and I’ll sneak over and free the Dragons. It’ll be easy,” Iris said confident in her plan, Swablu was still wary of the idea though given it seemed like it would work in Iris’s head. Actually executing it would be a whole different story however.

    Both glared at each other momentarily as Iris nodded and the Flying-type took off en route to the cage. On the trip there he flew over various tents that littered the land below. That reminded him once again he knew the minute he came with Iris that even trying to free the Dragons would be a risky move to make. Though he once again remembered how firm the young girl was in her convictions. As the bird came within range of the poacher, he noticed the man almost seemed to be nodding off into a sleep on his own and was barely being kept from falling into a slumber by a red, furry puppy that had its body decorated with black strips.

    “Growlgrowl!” The dog barked at Tommy as he let out a yawn.

    “Sorry girl, I’m glad you’re looking out for me though. I really need to turn in for the night....”
    Growlithe sympathetically came over and rubbed her body against Tommy’s leg. The man, fueled by the care of his Pokémon, continued to stay conscious.

    “I swear to God the money better be worth it.” Much to the surprise of Tommy, two small, beady, black eyes greeted him.

    “Grrrrrr,” Growlithe growled in an aggressive stance that suggested she saw Swablu as a threat.

    “Chill, it’s just a Swablu,” Tommy said calmly. Unknown to the Growlithe and Tommy Iris had made her way over to a tree right behind the caged-truck. “So, where did you come from?” Tommy asked with a hint of annoyance in his voice.

    “Now,” Iris gave the cue through her cupped hands that formed a false megaphone.

    “Okay, well you gotta g-”

    “Swaalalalala,” the man was interrupted by a flow of sound that poured from Swablu’s beak. Tommy and his canine were entranced by the sweet music in mere seconds, though Growlithe fought to stay awake her body betrayed her. The young adult had slumped to the ground quietly like a toddler.

    “Yes! Nice job!” Iris congratulated Swablu upon climbing down from the tree. As far as the plan went Swablu had successfully taken the poacher out of play. Iris went over and peered into the cage that housed the kidnapped reptiles. A sickening scent immediately attacked her nose before she even saw what she was looking at.

    The stint of blood, the blood that belonged to the Druddigon wrapped together with her mate. The same Pokémon Baron had whipped prior to stealing.

    “Druddigon,” Iris murmured as Swablu cooed. “Are you alright?” The girl naively asked, knowing the Pokémon were most certainly not okay, though she still felt the urge to ask.

    “Swa.”

    “Druddigon?” Iris reached her arm between the bars enough to stroke the body of the bloody Cave Pokémon who sniffed at the air curiously, confirming to herself that the presence was of someone from the Dragon Village. Inching in a little closer Iris managed to feel the Pokémon’s chest and could sense her vibrant heartbeat. “Please speak to me...” Iris got a little louder, her voice reflective of her concern.

    “Druddi,” the Pokémon whined. The other Druddigon managed to get up and walk toward the cage and meet eyes with Iris, seemingly connecting with the young girl on a very emotional level.

    “So, you can walk but your friend doesn't seem too okay.”

    “Druddigon,” The red-and-blue Pokémon confirmed with a soft sigh.

    “It’s okay, I’m gonna help you all. Swablu, we have to get this cage open,” Iris called out. Inside the cage, besides the two Druddigon, were a Vibrava, a Dragon-type that resembled a dragonfly, a Shelgon, a Charmeleon, and lastly was a rather large creature. It was mostly dark in appearance, it appeared to be sleeping, breathing in deep, long intervals of heavy breaths.

    ”What’s that?”

    “Swaswaswa,” the Pokémon gestured in a questioning manner, he was just as clueless on the species.

    “Let’s just try to get it open,” Iris took her focus off the mystery monster.

    “I think not little girl...” That voice, she turned around and met eyes with Baron. She could smell the thick scent of cologne as he walked closer, the young girl shot a leer right at him with no fear of making eye-contact. All Iris saw was a worthless, sadistic, thief strolling toward her. After all she had gone through he wasn't going to come out without wounds.

    “You monster! Fury Attack!” The Cotton Bird Pokémon violently attacked Baron as if he was channeling Iris’s anger through his own body.

    “Fuck! Stop it!” Baron swatted at the Pokémon who kept unleashing a barrage of furious pecks upon him.

    “Serves you right!” Iris ran over to the cage and screamed, “Everyone! You have to break this cage, somehow, there’s no time for me to free you!” Some of the creatures responded, others simply didn’t, which was a sure fire sign of their broken spirits. Almost as if they had accepted their awful fates. The determined child found a nicely sized rock on the ground and began to beat at the lock with all her might. “I’m gonna get you all out!”

    “Swablublublu!” The Pokémon had done a nice job of keeping Baron contained in one spot as his sharp beak continued to stab Baron’s skin. Small bloody spots had punctured from the repeated wear and tear. Baron grabbed for a Poké Ball in his pocket while trying to shield his face from the angry bird’s onslaught.

    “Weavile, kill that useless thing!” The Sharp Claw Pokémon appeared from the white-and-red sphere, clearly still tired from the earlier duel with Dragonite. Nonetheless the Ice-type separated Swablu from Baron with a quick rush which forced the bird to the ground hard.

    Iris was still working on the lock which was nowhere near as deterred as it was when she started from the repeated hits with the stone, she turned her head to see Swablu evading a crystal-looking blast from Weavile. Her heart immediately started racing.

    “Swablu, I’m coming!” Iris jumped away from the gate to run over to the Cotton Bird Pokémon who had landed near her. She stood in front of the cage watching and analyzing the battle as both Pokémon moved around with vibrancy, she felt the need to stay near Swablu. A lime-green orb of energy formed and was tossed at the Sharp Claw Pokémon by Swablu.

    “Ice Shard,” Baron responded, Weavile barreled a chunk of ice that met the Dragon-type move halfway to form a small explosion of light. “How weak, keep up the Ice Shard. Get rid of that little pest!”

    Weavile unleashed a barrage of icy fragments that Swablu evaded, a few of the wayward shards had shattered against the cage. From that racket that caused the cage to ring with sound, the shadowed creature finally moved, shuddering in its lethargic state.

    “It’s waking up,” Iris looked at the two Druddigon from in the prison who didn't know who the darkened cellmate was, neither did the other Dragons.

    “Ice Shard!” More cold stones crashed into the mobile confinement, creating even more boisterous rounding that resonated throughout the cage. Like before the resting creature was clearly getting more unnerved as it tossed and turned.

    ”Maybe, just maybe. That Dragon could be strong enough to break free and save the day!”

    "Swaaa."

    “Hey, Swablu, in front of the cage, over here!

    “She’s playing with me,” Baron had an increasing feeling of irritation gradually creep up on him. “Weavile, for the last time, hit that little annoyance!”

    Weavile created the biggest piece of ice yet, being nearly the size of a boulder, the gigantic shard was delivered toward the agile Flying-type. It was promptly evaded and slammed the jail hard, creating the most intense eruption of crying from the metal it impacted against. That was the last straw.

    The titan had awoken.

    “Raaawwwwwrrrrr!”

    A piercing screech from behind the young lady literally could have broken her eardrums. Iris turned quickly to see the dark figure rising to the roof of the cage, she was elated to see it had come to life. Baron’s blood had gone cold when he saw the hellish faces of the creature.

    Two small heads functioned as hands for the Dragon as well as a main head in the middle that was dark-blue with demonic, fuchsia eyes. Two useless legs limped in the air as the draconian, pitch-black wings gave the Pokémon the ability of flight.

    “Rawwwrrrr!” The monster’s voice blasted from all three heads which made Baron jump and surely awoke the other sleeping poachers.

    “You little bitch! Look what you’ve caused!” Baron’s eyes were bullets trained on Iris, though Iris’s attention was registered completely on the Brutal Pokémon before her. She had never seen one of those before. The child was engrossed as she watched the creature writhe around the closed space, firing a blaze in all directions.

    Unfortunately, a few of the other Dragons were almost hit by the attack. The male Druddigon did his best to shield his female counterpart from the fire, especially in her already severely pained state. Shelgon put up a barrier that they all gathered near that managed to keep them all guarded from the flames.

    “Swabluuuuu!” Meanwhile, still tangoing with Weavile, the Cotton Bird Pokémon came drilling down with his beak having grown little over half a foot long. The Ice-type was dive bombed in the same manner as he was when defeated by Dragonite.

    “Losing to the old bag and being beaten by a Pokémon that’s not even close to your speed?! Fuck! Why are you so useless!?” Weavile tried to not be fazed by the insult and conjured more Ice Shards which did not hit their mark. Swablu’s ability of flight combined with fatigue from battling Dragonite made such a task especially difficult.

    The Ice-type moves jetted through the air, each being dodged and hammering the cage which elicited more anger from the Dragon called “Hydreigon.” Iris had broken from her study when a blast of fire came close to hitting her.

    “Raawwwwrr!” The Pokémon’s eyes turned a bloody red as its whole body seemed to emit a ruby aura, this gave an even more terrifying appearance to the Pokémon who started attacking the cage head on and thrashing at it unrelentingly. Each ringing of the cage in-sync with Baron’s fearful heartbeats, before long bars were down, freeing the raging atrocity as well as nearly every other Dragon who saw a chance at freedom and took it with no hesitation. Only two remained, the male Druddigon was doing his best to steadily help his hurt mate toward freedom.

    “Swablu! Give me a hand!” Iris bellowed for her little friend who had no problem following orders. The Brutal Pokémon sent a chain of flames at Weavile from all three heads which enveloped the Pokemon’s whole body, the Ice-type immediately fell to the ground in a near-death state.

    “I caught you once and I can do it again!” Baron pulled out a black-and-yellow Poké Ball. Before running away Iris feared for the Brutal Pokemon’s safety and tried to give a message to flee.

    “You have to run! You’re free now!” Iris’s words fell on deaf ears as the Hydreigon ejected another shower of fire in a random area, “Why aren’t you listening, you have to run! You! Have! To! Run!” Iris shouted at the furious brute, taking deep breaths between each word.

    “After I contain it, you’re next, brat. You seriously don’t think I’m going to let you get away with losing my profit?” Iris’s previous boiling nature resurfaced, she had nearly forgotten about the leader of the gang. “So, you think you’re hot shit because that squirt was outclassing Weavile? Abomasnow, get its attention!”

    From the Ultra Ball came a creature covered in thick, chalky fur. It charged a mass of ice in its green hands, pitching it directly at Hydreigon who was knocked cleanly by the move in its enraged state.

    “He doesn't belong to you!”

    “Is that so? If I catch it, like any other person would, it technically belongs to me. Besides, who are you to tell me what and what I don’t own? Don’t worry, you’ll learn your place when I catch it again.” A sadistic grin formed around his face as Hydreigon approached.

    “Swabluuu,” he insinuated worriedly to Iris.

    “Escape? But, what about him?” Iris sympathetically looked at Hydreigon. “Well, I can at least help the Druddigon escape.”

    Meanwhile, now coming to his senses was Tommy who rubbed his head and felt soft debris on his body.

    “What’s going on...?” He examined himself and Growlithe as he heard the ruckus and saw Baron’s Abomasnow engaged with a Hydreigon. He looked to his left to see Iris helping the Druddigon duo flee the scene by entering the thickness of the forest.

    “Come on, you’ll be okay!” Iris had the female Druddigon’s right arm wrapped around her shoulder. “You two can get away while he’s busy!” Iris felt Tommy’s stare trained on her, she glanced to the left and looked right into his eyes. Tommy did not say anything, Iris did not speak either. Her eyes were a mirror that told an infuriated story of passion, those eyes were ones he would never forget.

    The eyes of angry compassion like the rage of a Dragon itself. With Growlithe in-tow he ran away from the area as hastily as he could. Swablu kept a watching eye on the bout between the two fully-evolved Pokemon.

    Neither side looked like they were going to give in, however in the blink of an eye, Hydreigon spat a Flamethrower that ripped through Abomasnow’s fur. Doing its best to keep itself together, the Frost Tree Pokémon blew a very chilly wind that the Brutal Pokémon evaded with ease.

    The Dragon swooped down in a flash and bared its fangs, biting down unrelentingly on Abomasnow’s arm. The Ice-type cried out for the simple freedom from the bite however Hydreigon got more agitated and forced its teeth deeper into the Frost Tree Pokémon’s flesh.

    Blood gradually began to spill from the wound, all Abomasnow did was struggle helplessly, Hydreigon let go only after its enemy had fallen unconscious. Another near-death state that the very Brutal Pokémon had forced upon one of Baron’s.

    “This shit isn’t worth it!” Baron returned his Grass-type, most of the other poachers had gotten the right idea and already fled the scene after waking up. “Fearow, abort!”

    The bird with a massive beak appeared from a Poké Ball, he boarded it in an attempt to escape. Despite nearly being blasted out of the air by Flamethrowers from Hydreigon he had gotten away. Meanwhile, Iris and the Druddigon had covered half a mile.

    “This is far enough, you two go. I have to go help Swablu and that other Dragon somehow.”

    “Drudd,” the male nodded as him and the female continued the trek toward the Dragon Village.

    “Raawwwwrr!” The Brutal Pokémon continued to fly around, spitting more flames at everything and anything in its path. Many forest Pokémon had ran away from the area due to the dangerous situation as well as the unearthly noise that belonged to Hydreigon. Iris made it back to the poachers’ site running full speed, she was glad to see them gone.

    “Thank you! You scared them away, now’s let g-” A trail of flames shot near her, nearly setting the tree next to her on fire.

    “Swabluuu,” the Pokémon frantically flew back toward Iris, struggling to stay mobile. The feathers on his body were charred, the fire had only grazed him but had done a significant amount of damage while he tried to put the creature to sleep. She caught the small bird and held him in her arms.

    Iris looked down at Swablu's burnt feathers, and Swablu couldn't help but feel bad over the tears Iris was about to shed.

    “Rawwwwwrrr!” The blustering cry from the fully-evolved Dragon was a sign of attack as it expelled another burst of fire toward Swablu and Iris but the girl was surprised to look up and see she and the bird were not hit as the raging beast’s fire was intercepted by a similar attack.

    "Druddigon!" cried the male Cave Pokemon as he came racing in, having blocked Hydreigon's attack. Despite this, her constant close calls with the fire were starting to get to Iris, and she wiped the sweat from her forehead while consoling her injured friend.

    “Drudd!” Iris couldn’t forget about the still agonized female Druddigon, who she assumed had made it to the village alright. The maiden looked up at the horrendous face of Hydreigon once more as it continued its rampage, trying to kill anything that so much as moved, viewing it as an enemy.

    The Cave Pokémon stepped up to try and take on the destructive monstrosity, getting away from the others to avoid them getting hit by any stray attacks.

    “I don’t know what I did, I thought he would listen if he got free....” she cuddled the poor soul who cooed softly in her arms while they watched the fighting Dragons.

    “Druddi!” the Pokémon had two cerulean claws ready to attack Hydreigon and the large creature leapt into the air and slashed violently. Hydreigon dodged the close-range attack, however; the ability to fly made an earth-bound Pokémon’s job much harder. As the Cave Pokémon fell back to the ground his wings worked as a parachute to cushion the force of the fall.

    A cluster of turquoise balls darted from the main head of Hydreigon, to counter Druddigon discharged shots of brown filth that met and made an explosion that ripped through the air so hard Hydreigon was fanned back a significant amount. Druddigon was calm and cool and made sure to watch closely and leave no room for error.

    Next Hydreigon attempted to go in for a close-quarters attack by showing its fangs, once again, hurrying toward the Cave Pokémon. Iris saw the blood-stained fangs and cringed all the while getting more and more unnerved the longer the barbaric beast kept up its assault.

    Hydreigon bit down on Druddigon, its grip was quickly broken though. The inside of its mouth had been scissored by the rough, spiky skin of Druddigon. The red-and-blue creature retaliated by knocking the bleeding Dragon across the face with a Dragon Claw that forced it to the ground.

    Iris saw blood leak from the Brutal Pokémon’s mouth and began to shiver. She cared about Druddigon and wanted him to survive but she didn’t want harm to come to Hydreigon either. The battle was turning into a very scary, deadly sight.

    Druddigon made ready to go in for another Dragon Claw though the incoming Pokémon was hit by a Flamethrower that forced him to the ground after he jumped.

    Hydreigon’s body and eyes glowed a deep red as he raced at Druddigon and unleashed all of his rage in the form of punching and thrashing that the Pokémon did his best to endure. It wasn’t easy and gradually the Cave Pokémon gave way and fell while Hydreigon’s Outrage continued to batter him.

    “Raawwrrr!” After the storm of hits had ended Hydreigon rose to the air menacingly and readied a Flamethrower to finish Druddigon for good.

    “Don’t do it! Please!” Iris’s face was covered with tears that dropped lightly on Swablu who had blacked-out some moments prior. The trapped flames overflowed from the monster’s mouth and Iris gave one last futile scream before the attack was fully charged, just when Hydreigon made ready to let loose the move.

    “Brrrrraugh!” it was boxed in the face by a fiery, yellow fist.

    “Dragonite!” Iris’s tears ceased momentarily.

    “I’m so glad you’re okay!” Mira came running in behind Iris, bending down on her knees and hugging her graciously with tears running down her face. Ryuu appeared behind his daughter and glared up at the Hydreigon. Before it could even react to the Fire Punch, a Dragon Claw smashed into its stomach.

    “Rawwwrr!” The rage continued as Hydreigon created another Flamethrower.

    “End this, Dragonite! Thunderbolt! Shelgon, Hydro Pump!” Ryuu commanded.

    Iris looked over to see Mira’s Pokémon was indeed there as well, she hadn’t even noticed. The large, yellow Pokémon generated a storm of electricity that zapped Hydreigon complemented by a pump of water from the Shelgon that amplified the attack. The Brutal Pokémon was unable to spew flames, it also struggled to move as sparks surged from its body.

    “Paralysis,” the man pulled out a Poké Ball similar to the one Baron had, “Ultra Ball, Hydreigon!” Ryuu launched the capsule at the Dragon and the strong sphere forced the beaten-up Brutal Pokémon inside. There was an internal struggle that caused the sphere to wiggle for a few seconds but it soon stopped as indicated by a small spring of sparkles popped from it.

    “It’s all over,” Ryuu closed his eyes and looked at the surrounding area, surveying the damage.

    “Ryuu,” Iris whimpered like a small animal while making her way over to her caretaker with Swablu still in her arms. “Is Druddigon going to be okay?!” Ryuu didn’t have the heart to try to sugarcoat anything.

    “I don’t know,” Ryuu said as he marched over to the severely hurt Cave Pokémon with Iris following closely behind.

    “What about Swablu?!” she held out her palms with the bird peacefully sleeping in them.

    “Don’t worry about this, leave it to me.” The elder man went over the Druddigon and put him inside a Poké Ball. Mira picked up the captured Hydreigon’s Ultra Ball and pocketed it.

    “Iris, let’s go home,” Mira said with tears still pooled in her eyes from reuniting with Iris. “Give Swablu to me,” Iris handed her the injured Pokémon with care.

    “Dragonite, this is urgent!” Ryuu called to his guardian, ready to take flight, securing Swablu and the Ultra Ball from Mira with Druddigon’s Poké Ball as well. “I promise I’ll do everything I can.” He left her with few words while Dragonite raced off to the village with an earnest sense of urgency.

    “Let’s go Iris, we’ll walk together,” the young girl sobbed with Mira putting her arm around her friend's shoulder.

    -:-

    Iris stood outside the medical tent set-up near Ryuu’s clinic; unsurprisingly, quite a few people were concerned for her and welcomed her back with hugs and smiles. However, there was no reason to celebrate or be happy for inside the setup facility was her mentor himself performing critical surgery on Druddigon. The Cave Pokémon was most likely in more turmoil and pain than the child could ever understand.

    “Swa,” the tiny bird swooped in with bandages around his body.

    “I’m glad you’re okay, I feel really guilty.”

    “Swabluululu,” the Pokémon tried to snap Iris out of her saddened mood. Mira appeared from the tent abruptly.

    “Well, the female Druddigon’s wounds have been treated, though most of the pain had to do with what’s in her stomach,” Mira explained.

    “Are you saying?” Iris’s eyes widened.

    “She’s pregnant and due in a little while, can’t give an estimate on her time. Though I’m sure the egg will make it out fine, despite the amount of abuse she suffered...” Mira bit her lip.

    “Mira, I need your assistance!” Ryuu called for his daughter to return.

    “Be right back.”

    “She’s pregnant and the baby’s gonna be okay, that’s the one good thing to come out of this,” Iris chatted with the Cotton Bird Pokémon. She was getting tired, she didn’t leave the medical tent but simply sat down near the entrance and rested her eyes until she fell into a warm, light nap with Swablu nestled in her arms.

    -:-

    “Iris.....psh...Iris. Daddy needs you to come into the tent,” Iris rubbed her eyes until the blur disappeared revealing the tan face of Mira. She did what was told without a word, mostly due to her groggy state.

    “Iris...” Ryuu bit his tongue. “I need you to say goodbye to Druddigon...” Iris’s face immediately lost its color as it was obvious what she was about to do.

    “No tears,” Mira bent down to the child’s level. “Druddigon wants to hear your voice," she said as the young girl walked over to the being as Ryuu stood by.

    “Druddigon, I’m so so sorry. I’m was stupid to think that Dragon would help us and now you’re like this!” she wiped the drops of water from her face. Ryuu placed his hand on the Cave Pokemon’s chest and closed his eyes.

    “He says that you made a mistake, that’s okay. He was glad that before his mate left this world she was able to give birth to the egg containing their child safely,” Ryuu translated. Iris immediately came to the realization that from that news the female Druddigon passed away while in labor.

    “What have I done?” Iris fell to her knees, putting her face to the floor and sobbing loudly. “There’s nothing I can do to apologize!” Iris’s guilt nearly overtook her while the man did his best to keep his composure and continue translating.

    “Don’t worry about that at all. Just promise to be good friends with my kid,” The Cave Pokémon smirked as Ryuu said that, Mira lifted Iris up from the ground and handed her a red and blue egg with a crooked yellow pattern running through the middle from left to right. Iris gaped down at the egg, halting her crying.

    “Ryuu, I thought Druddigon wanted to continue on. I thought I understood.”

    “No,” Ryuu was stern but calm, “If you really had understood Druddigon’s heart you would have realized that his wishes were to end the pain. Druddigon has suffered many serious injuries beyond repair, even attempting to live would be a burden on him. There would have to be surgeries often every few years or possibly months, foods he wouldn’t be able to eat at all, I’m not even sure if he could ever walk again. Being a wild Pokémon, that’s a necessity for life.”

    Iris felt even more terrible about what had happened, though Druddigon was looking at her with a sympathetic face that told her not to weep any further.

    Still, with the Druddigon-themed egg in her hands, she slumped and looked at a table, sitting there was the Ultra Ball. Mira looked at Iris warmly.

    “If you want to know, that Dragon is called Hydreigon and I’m almost positive it isn’t from around here in the main village. Probably lives in a den somewhere and it’s going to be okay, that species is known for their power and resilience.” Mira informed, Iris forgot about the Brutal Pokémon for a second and just observed the Cave Pokémon.

    “Goodbye, Druddigon,” Iris said one last time, still caressing the egg that contained the Dragon life as she fell asleep from sheer exhaustion right then and there. She had been completely worn-out and mentally drained, trying to fight to stay awake would have been a meaningless struggle.

    After that event Iris learned a lot. She learned about the evil within humans and the evil within Pokémon. She learned about life and death a bit more. Her own ideals about cherishing what was near and dear to her were strengthened that day. She learned about never taking life for granted. One thing in particular stuck out to Iris, the one thing she knew. She had never feared a Dragon in her life, she thought she had warm feelings for nearly all Dragons she encountered, however, now she knew that wasn’t the case.

    She was afraid of Hydreigon.
    Last edited by Bubble Frog; 15th March 2013 at 01:09 AM.

  11. #11
    Lost Time Memory Flaze's Avatar Moderator
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    Default Re: The Girl Who Knows the Hearts of Dragons - Released - Chapter 3

    This chapter was really great in my opinion, for one we finally got a chance to solve the confrontation with the poachers that had started from chapter one. Something that I particularly liked about this chapter was the emotion that you were able to canalized, you also kept me on my feet with the battle, especially since I didn't know what was going to happen. Though I did feel a bit sad at the end when Druddigon died cause I honestly thought he had saved himself; but I'm glad that this is all going to help Iris's development at the end of the day.

    The description and grammar of the chapter was mostly perfect, I say mostly only because of these two instances.

    “Swablu, I’m coming!” Iris jumped away from the gate to run over to the Cotton Bird Pokémonwho had landed near her. She stood in front of the cage watching and analyzing the battle as both Pokémonmoved around with vibrancy, she felt the need to stay near Swablu. A lime-green orb of energy formed and was tossed at the Sharp Claw Pokémon by Swablu.

    Blood gradually began to spill from the wound, all Abomasnow did was struggle helplessly, soon Hydreigon let go only after the Pokémonhad fallen unconscious. Another near-death state that the very Brutal Pokémon had forced upon one of Baron’s.
    Though those were just simple spacing errors I figured that you should know just in case.

  12. #12
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    Default Re: The Girl Who Knows the Hearts of Dragons - Released - Chapter 3

    First off, your intro. I felt like you were giving information, which it kind of converse to story format. Usually the reader would infer this information through events from the story itself. Also, towards the end, it got a bit cheesy, almost like a tv show. Um, have you read the intro to Legacy's fanfic "Pocket Monsters"? In the intro his does something similar, but for better purpose, and it's better executed (check it out). In my opinion it would have been better if you only mention the dragon parts and focused more on them.

    Your character interactions are good, but try to trim down on the dialogue tags, try to make them simpler. I love how you make hatching an egg such a big deal, even though in both the game and anime it's much more plain, and quick.

    Your description is really good, not much of a problem there, but there's still room for improvement. In my opinion you should try to only describe what's necessary for the characters or the plot, or else just omit it. Of course that doesn't mean you should stop describing, don't forget to paint our eyes a picture, compose a symphony for our ears and feed our other senses too (smell, flavor and texture), just make sure that it's helpful. Nobody like being mislead by empty description.

    This Baron was a really cliche bad guy, and I think you know that so.. whatever xD. The battle was good, I believe that battles are when they're unpredictable and you did a great job of making it that way.

    Anyway, I really liked how you started this story, even if the chapter was kind of long. I'll be sure to keep reading, even though personally I don't like canon based fanfiction.

    EDIT: you know I just read the first comment and I read that there was a spoiler about who the champion is in BW2... and then I read the note... you shouldn't spoil that, I played it recently and was genuinely surprised, no astonished and amazed. It was awesome now that I think about it... so please remove that ;) Oh, and how about adding an index to the first post.
    Last edited by Safe-T; 27th January 2013 at 05:47 PM.

    COMING SOON!

  13. #13
    Reader and Writer Legacy's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Girl Who Knows the Hearts of Dragons - Released - Chapter 3

    Really enjoyed this latest chapter. I liked learning more about the poachers, etc. More great description and compelling relationship between Iris and the others. I like the mix of trueness to BW and your own twists. Well done!

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    Not A Piece of Cake Bubble Frog's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Girl Who Knows the Hearts of Dragons - Released - Chapter 3

    Quote Originally Posted by Stellar Gale View Post
    Though those were just simple spacing errors I figured that you should know just in case.
    Thank you for pointing that out, I went back and fixed that. I swear Google Chrome's Find and Replace feature will be the bane of me. :P I also really appreciate the review.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lance View Post
    First off, your intro. I felt like you were giving information, which it kind of converse to story format. Usually the reader would infer this information through events from the story itself. Also, towards the end, it got a bit cheesy, almost like a tv show. Um, have you read the intro to Legacy's fanfic "Pocket Monsters"? In the intro his does something similar, but for better purpose, and it's better executed (check it out). In my opinion it would have been better if you only mention the dragon parts and focused more on them.
    Yeah, I've gotten that pointed out quite a lot. Looking back I think I was trying to convey a sense of newness by throwing in that movie-like beginning but focusing more on Dragons probably would have been ideal, as you said. I have indeed read Pocket Monsters and the opening was quite flawless and fits the theme of his story much better than the way I executed.

    I love how you make hatching an egg such a big deal, even though in both the game and anime it's much more plain, and quick.
    Thank you, I figured it should be treated as more prestige an event since it's hatching a Dragon or draconic being, traditionally in-games they take quite a while to hatch in-comparison to most other Pokemon. Plus it felt like a way to show off Ryuu's method of teaching toward Iris in a somewhat non-bland, dragged out way.

    Your description is really good, not much of a problem there, but there's still room for improvement. In my opinion you should try to only describe what's necessary for the characters or the plot, or else just omit it. Of course that doesn't mean you should stop describing, don't forget to paint our eyes a picture, compose a symphony for our ears and feed our other senses too (smell, flavor and texture), just make sure that it's helpful. Nobody like being mislead by empty description.
    I appreciate the compliment, though people tell me my description is good I've always thought it was pretty lukewarm at best. Yep, that's my general way of describing I somewhat got from Tsutarja & a couple other writers here and on other sites. Describing things that are relevant to the story at hand and give more of a pay-off than describing every little thing. Like you said there's a lot of room for improvement though, I glad you pointed that out because it really let's me know what I should watch out for. A little more variation in my description could work wonders too. Like you said, if I'm gonna describe, say an orange, it should be done with purpose. Is this orange special? Is this orange going to be relevant to the story? Of course if it's just a normal orange and there's nothing special about it I could just say it's an orange. I've gotta work on my sensory description as well, so far I seem to focus mainly on smell, hearing, and sight. Taste and touch definitely need more sharpening.

    This Baron was a really cliche bad guy, and I think you know that so.. whatever xD. The battle was good, I believe that battles are when they're unpredictable and you did a great job of making it that way.
    Yep, I've gotten that a quite a bit. XD Typical "super-villainy" persona, "bad because he wants money" type guy. At the time I conceived his character I hadn't really cared about giving his character any depth because he's more so a plot-device and vector to move the plot along. Though I'll watch out for that in the future when other antagonistic/villain characters appear. Thank you for the compliment on the battle, battles are definitely something I have a small amount of experience writing so it's good to know it wasn't a total snooze fest.

    EDIT: you know I just read the first comment and I read that there was a spoiler about who the champion is in BW2... and then I read the note... you shouldn't spoil that, I played it recently and was genuinely surprised, no astonished and amazed. It was awesome now that I think about it... so please remove that ;) Oh, and how about adding an index to the first post
    Yeah, you're probably right on that notion. Also, are you psychic? I actually was planning to add an index right now 0_o

    Quote Originally Posted by Legacy View Post
    Really enjoyed this latest chapter. I liked learning more about the poachers, etc. More great description and compelling relationship between Iris and the others. I like the mix of trueness to BW and your own twists. Well done!
    Thank you, I'm appreciative of the kind words.

  15. #15
    J'ai Envie De Toi AetherX's Avatar Moderator
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    Default Re: The Girl Who Knows the Hearts of Dragons - Updated - Chapter 3

    Let's try this again :P

    PLOT: Besides showing us the first moderated Pokemon battle of the fic, Chapter 2's primary purpose seems to be to introduce Drayden. It didn't develop the plot a ton, but it did a good job of showing us Ryuu's and Drayden's personalities (or at least that of their younger selves). The use of a flashback helped break up the flow, such that the action was sustained, but we didn't jump right into anything. I wonder though, if this flashback means that you will often be using the past to put events in perspective, or if this was just a one time thing. I liked young Ryuu and Drayden, it would be nice to see them again.

    Chapter 3 was less character based, and it felt to get back to the real story. I like how you controlled the flow here as well. I feel like you're really setting something up, but you haven't straight up said what the fic is going to be about quite yet. That said, I hope the general idea becomes clear soon after that roller coaster of action. The bit with Hydreigon was excellently done, and really showed a bit of Iris's naivety when it comes to dragon-types.

    I have to say though, it took me several read-throughs to understand the whole Druddigon situation. Let me see if I got this right: the female was the one injured at first, while the male was the one that fought the Hydreigon. The male later died from his wounds (very well done death scene, by the way. It highlighted Iris's youth. I hope to see more of this dragon-whisperer stuff in the future), while the female died during childbirth? Or did the female not die? The whole thing was kind of unclear, especially because I don't think you clarified which was the male and which was the female at the beginning, but correct me if I'm wrong.

    All in all, good job. I see the fear of Hydreigon becoming important. I get the feeling that this chapter is considerably more important than it comes across as. Is there a trope for that? I think of it as the "A Day in the Life" after the EverymanHybrid video, if you follow the Slenderman mythos. But I digress...

    A couple nitpicks:

    Inside the cage, besides the two Druddigon, were a Vibrava, a Dragon-type that resembled a dragonfly, a Shelgon, a Charmeleon, and lastly was a rather large creature.
    Whatever happened to the other dragons? As in, the Vibrava, Shelgon, and Charmeleon? They kind of disappeared after Hydreigon broke loose. I'm assuming they just ran away, but I don't think you say anywhere.

    Iris stood outside the medical tent set-up near Ryuu’s clinic
    Why the tent? Isn't it a medical clinic in the first place?

    CHARACTERS: I can't honestly comment on development at this early point in the story, but I can say that I thoroughly enjoy what characters we have introduced so far. Chapters 2 and 3 didn't really give us anyone new except for young Drayden, and who knows what he's going to be like in "modern" times. Ryuu got some exposition that was well done, but I still want to see more of Mira. She seems like a cool character but she's been restricted to minor support so far.

    Iris seems simultaneously mature for her age and yet it's too a point that I'm okay with. She's young, and you've included some things that go along with that. I suppose the perceived maturity could be given to the way she was raised (which we still don't really know a ton about). Just try to keep in mind that this is an eight year old we're talking about. I liked her interaction with Swablu, it really showed a lot about her character. In fact, Swablu seemed like a good character on its own. I love me some quality Pokemon characterization.

    Baron continued to be the cliche villain. Nothing wrong with that. I still find Tommy interesting, so I hope we see more of this pair in the future. Not much else to say on this front.

    WRITING: You've improved significantly from the first chapter, but I still stand by what I said in this section of my first review. Less is more when it comes to word choice, especially adjectives. If you find yourself using several adjectives for one subject, try replacing them with one powerful adjective. Better yet, choose a noun or verb that doesn't require an adjective. If you want some specific examples just say the word, but I'm going to move on since it's basically what I was saying last time. Like I said though, these chapters are significantly better in that regard compared to the first. To finish off, here's some random stuff I caught:

    “There’s no point in continuing Gyarados, you did a good job though.”
    A mistake we all make. Avoid placing commas instead of periods. Try this instead:

    "There’s no point in continuing, Gyarados. You did a good job though."

    against my Dragonair noless.
    *no less
    Two words, despite how we say it. Probably a typo, just thought I'd point it out.

    The titan had awaken.
    *awoken
    Awaken is a command. Again, could just be a typo.

    Iris felt Tommy’s stare her,
    I'm not quite sure what you're trying to say here :P

    “Mira, I need your assistance!” Ryuu called for his daughter to return. “Be right back.”
    A new character speaking always gets a new line. Unless Ryuu's saying he'll be right back? But I'm assuming it's Mira.

    OVERALL: Quite a good pair of chapters. I thoroughly enjoyed the action, but I'm eager to see how you handle the downtime between fast paced scenes like those. As always my advice is to proofread, particularly with the adjective stuff I mentioned in mind. Can't wait for more!

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