Rated E10+ for fantasy violence and frightning images
The Legend of Taki
Episode 1: Taki's Choice (part 1)
"Ash?" a brown haired woman asks as she puts away some clean laundry in the dresser.
"Hm?" a black haired boy sighs as he wakes up from a nap with a yawn.
"The annual drama's premiere is going to start in a few minutes...are you going to watch or not?"
The boy is up in a heartbeat. "I wouldn't miss Pokemon Channel's new drama for the world!" He nudges a sleeping yellow mouse creature awake. "Come on, Pikachu--it's almost time for the new drama to start!"
"Pika!" Pikachu hops off the bed and eagerly follows Ash down the stairs, where a brown haired boy is on the couch. As he gets the popcorn, chips, and other treats in order, he is briefing a black haired girl on what to expect from the yearly production.
"...if they don't do an adaptation of something like the hero of Lugia, Mt. Coronet, or the brothers of Unova; nine times out of ten the drama will take place in a fictional region named Ransei." the boy explains.
"Pini pini hapi?" a pink humanoid Pokemon interuppts.
"Happini wants to know what to do if the show gets scary, Brock." the girl translates as Ash flies onto the couch next to her, with Delia arriving some moments later.
Brock just smiles as Pikachu begins dividing up treats. "If it gets too scary for you, you can hide your eyes--I'll tell you when to look again."
Coming up next on Pokemon Channel, a world premiere series event--a young girl embarks on a perilous quest to defeat a ruthless warlord and restore the rightful empress of Ransei to the throne--stay tuned for 'The Legend of Taki' the announcer reports over a "Coming Up Next" eyecatch.
"There's the obligatory setting in Ransei..." the girl sighs.
"Well, not every drama is set in Ransei, Dawn--some of them were 52 episode adaptations of lore from our world." Delia explains. "Last year, they did the hero of Lugia..."
"...Which I had the honor to retrace his steps in my own adventure!" Ash smiles before digging into the popcorn.
"You'll have to ask Ash to tell you that story sometime." Brock whispers to Dawn.
"I will." Dawn replies before focusing her attention on the TV screen.
Onscreen, a majestic orchestral theme plays over a starlit sky as the words "World Premiere" are written in the "stars". When the logo is complete, the words "shine" over the last triumphant stinger.
"Here we go!" Ash watches intently as the bumper fades out.
"A long time ago, the kingdom of Ransei was a peaceful and prosperous land." a male voice narrates as a map of the fictional region of Ransei fades in. "Then, one of the empress' top generals, Nobunaga, deposed her, forcing her to go into hiding." As the narrator is speaking, we see a black haired man in ornate black, gold and purple plate shoving a black haired woman in an ornately colored kimono-like outfit to the ground. When we see the woman again, she is wrapped in a blue cloak and fleeing on a Ponyta as hundreds of armored warriors pursue her on Rapidashes.
"There's no way a Ponyta could outrun a few hundred Rapidashes..." Dawn notes.
"They can, and they will if they're strong enough." Ash replies.
"Overnight, Ransei was split into 17 rival kingdoms, each with their own leader that in turn reported to Nobunaga." the narrator continues as the map of Ransei splits into 17 pieces. "If any questioned Nobunaga's rule, their village would be destroyed at the hand of Zekurom, the Black Thunder." The camera then zooms into one section of the map, where a screaming crowd rushes to flee a giant black fox dragon. "Many tried to rebel against Nobunaga's harsh rule," the narrator intones as a man rushes to try and attack the majestic Pokemon. Zekurom looks up from leveling a house, spots his attacker, and fires a Thunderbolt in the man's direction. "but all attempts at rebellion have failed." The clang of the unlucky man's sword landing in the ground next to his body punctuates the narrator's point.
"Well, if Nobanoogie has that demonic Pokemon--" Dawn starts.
"Nobunaga." Brock gently corrects her.
Dawn tries her point again. "Well, if Nobunaga..." She pauses and looks over at Brock, who nods to assure her she has pronounced the name correctly. "If Nobunaga has that demonic Pokemon, it's no wonder all attempts at rebellion have failed!"
"Zekurom just squishes them like Venonats." Ash agrees. "That is, if Nobunaga doesn't kill them first."
The omnious scene zooms back out to the map of Ransei and zooms into a tinier section of the map, where a girl about eight or nine years old wearing some pink kimono-like armor walks down a road with an Eevee at her side. "Now, a young girl from the tiny kingdom of Aurora attempts the perilous journey to Aiiro City, where Nobunaga rules with an iron fist." the narrator explains as the girl sits down to rest. "Can she unite the 17 kingdoms and restore the rightful empress to the throne? This is her story..." At this the girl looks up at the sky and the title appears in Japanese-esque letters over an orchestral swell.
"Okay, so an evil general kicked the rightful queen out of the castle and decided to rule the kingdom himself." Brock recaps what the group has just seen to the Pokemon as the opening credits roll. "If anyone said they didn't like him as ruler, he would send Zekurom to destroy their cities."
"Hap pini pini pi!" Happini is appalled at this.
"Yeah, it isn't very nice." Brock replies. "So what Taki wants to do is defeat the evil general and get the rightful ruler back in the palace, so everyone can be happy again."
"Pika?" Pikachu swallows hard--pink armor and cute looks won't do much against a fox dragon.
"I'm sure Taki will find a way, Pikachu--don't worry." Delia assures Pikachu as the episode title card appears.
"Chapter 1: Taki's Choice." Ash reads the title card to the Pokemon.
Dawn is unimpressed at the episode's title. "What choice is there to make? Nobunaga's destroying the region town by town, and she decides to stop him!"
"Maybe it's not so easy as that...." Delia cautions as the scene of a peaceful Asian-esque village appears on the screen.
The camera pans over the simple wooden houses with thatched roofs, the fields and rice paddies, the the various people on the road for a moment, until we stop at one particular house, where we see the girl from earlier picking Berries from a Oran tree.
"Taki!" a woman's voice calls in the distance, getting the girl's attention.
"Your lunch is ready!" Brock fills in what he thinks the woman will say in an amazingly accurate impersonation of her voice. The Pokemon laugh at this.
The girl sets down her basket and runs to embrace a woman in a simple purple robe. "My little girl.. you're growing up so fast!" she smiles. "Ten years--soon you will be ready to choose a trade." she notes.
A man in a dull blue robe enters the scene some moments later, with a decorated box in his arms. "Happy birthday, Taki--I've made you something very special for the occasion." he smiles as he offers the box to Taki.
Taki eagerly opens the box and gently lifts out the small wooden flute inside. "It's beautiful!" she gasps as the camera zooms in on the flute's ivy decorations. "Thank you!" she smiles as she hugs her father.
"I hope that when you play this flute, you will remember our happiness as a family." the man replies. "Pokemon will flock to you as a moyo, because they want some of that happiness."
Taki gives her father a little bow. "I promise I will make lots of Pokemon happy with this flute, and make both of you happy too!" With that, she dashes down the path towards a grassy plain.
"Hey, Mom..." Ash nudges Delia.
"Yes, Ash?" Delia asks.
"You are taping this, right?" Ash asks.
"I set the DVR to tape the drama this morning, so if we miss a week, you won't be lost." Delia replies.
And, if Taki plays some really pretty song, I can learn to play it myself! Ash thinks as he cradles Pikachu in his arms.
Taki dashes towards the plain and settles beneath a tree on a hill overlooking the town, looking up at the clouds passing above her.
"That one looks like a Pikachu." Ash's attempt at impersonating Taki's voice breaks the peaceful silence, making everyone laugh.
"Good one, Ash!" Dawn giggles as she brushes a tear of laughter from her eye.
After a few seconds, Taki spots an Eevee in the grass. "Eevee, hear now the song in my heart." she muses before playing a playful melody, making her flute glow pink as the sparkling energy flows into the Eevee's heart. The Eevee is mesmerized by the hypnotic melody, and dances as Taki's flute and the percussion in the background continue to play.
"Dude, look at the dancing hearts and stars..." Brock comments in character as a teenage boy as the Eevee weaves and dances through a swirling rainbow background of hearts, stars, Beautiflies, and kanji.
"Talk about a real trip..." Dawn agrees.
Ash, meanwhile, is more interested in Taki's flute. "Memo to self--find out where I can get one of those!"
"Acid trip not included." Brock cautions as the song ends, and the Eevee romps into Taki's arms.
"I did it! I did it!" Taki trumphantly cries as she hugs her new Eevee. After thinking for a moment for a name she announces "I'll call you..."
"Mineko!" Ash suggests.
"Machiko!" Dawn calls.
"Miyako!" Brock suggests.
The name Taki chooses, however, is different. "Niru!"
"Vee!" the Eevee cries happily. Taki hugs her new friend, then starts back towards town as the scene fades out for a commercial.