Pokémon XD^2: The Return of Shadow (Anime/Game, PG-13 for dialogue and some violence)

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    Default Pokémon XD^2: The Return of Shadow (Anime/Game, PG-13 for dialogue and some violence)

    The first fifteen or so chapters, I should tell you now, are a little lame. I've been constantly improving, but you won't see that here until I catch up with where I am at Serebii.

    First, it is definitely recommended you read "Pokémon XD: Enigma Shadow" which can be found at http://www.freewebs.com/emperorbutler/.

    And now..........on with the show!
    ----------------------------------------------------------------------



    "Pokémon XD^2: The Return of Shadow" (PG-13)

    PROLOGUE



    As the sun rose over the Orre Sea, its bright rays shone on a large cruise liner heading for the region. This voyage was quite a newsworthy one; it was the very first ocean liner to head for Orre in the three years after the abduction of the S.S. Libra by the criminal organization Cipher. The S.S. Athena was a beautiful vessel indeed. Its white hull was polished to a brilliant luster that sparkled as the water lapped at it. The inside of the ship was just as beautiful as the outside---newspapers talking about the S.S. Athena in the weeks leading up to its departure from Slateport City in Hoenn all noted that its staterooms were built to four-star hotel standards not to mention that its gorgeous main hall, which connected to the ballroom, the dining room, and the ship's casino, was built with golden walls, marble floor tile and huge crystal chandeliers.

    There was something else uniquely exciting about this voyage. All the passengers on board were Pokémon trainers heading for the Orre Region to participate in the Colosseum Challenge circuit. In fact, a number of the sailors working on the ship also carried their Pokémon with them and would gladly engage each other or the passengers in battles.

    And that is where our story begins. Rich and Anabel Mistbloom, taking a vacation from Larousse City and its famous Battle Tower for a little rest and relaxation in Orre, are on the S.S. Athena en route to Gateon Port. But of course, with Rich never being one to turn down a challenge (which in turn leaves Anabel with her hands quite full sometimes) we find him in the main hall, about to battle a sailor in a white uniform.

    "Go, Pelipper and Crawdaunt!"

    The sailor threw two Poké Balls, sending out a white bird with a large yellow bill and a red lobster-like Pokémon with powerful claws.

    "Pelipper and Crawdaunt, eh? Go, Alakazam and Blaziken!"

    Rich drew two Poké Balls off the belt he was wearing between his sky-blue shirt and sky-blue slacks and threw them. They popped open in bursts of light to release a yellow fox-like creature that held two spoons and a Fire and Fighting Pokémon that was like a large chicken.

    As the two teams of Pokémon stared each other down, a young woman dressed in shades of purple and blue to complement her purple hair--this was Anabel--raised her hands in the air.

    "This will be a double battle with two Pokémon on each side!" she called, then she let her hands fall. "Begin!"

    "Let's make this quick, Alakazam. Thunderpunch!"

    Alakazam's fist crackled with electricity, then it lunged at the Pelipper.

    "Protect yourself, Pelipper!"

    Just before Alakazam's Thunderpunch made contact, Pelipper put up a shield of green light around itself. Alakazam hit the shield and bounced off, doing nothing.

    "Your turn, Crawdaunt! Crabhammer!"

    Crawdaunt opened its claws wide and rushed towards Blaziken.

    "Try and block it with Brick Break if you can!"

    Blaziken reared back and shoved its fists forward towards Crawdaunt. The lobster clamped down on Blaziken's arms and swung the Fire and Fighting type over its head, but before it could let go Blaziken had recovered and swung Crawdaunt over its head back. Blaziken then hit Crawdaunt with a powerful punch attack anyway.

    "Alakazam, finish Crawdaunt off with another Thunderpunch!"

    The sailor couldn't react fast enough. By the time he had opened his mouth to order a Protect, Alakazam had already delivered a blow with its electrified fist to Crawdaunt. The lobster Pokémon fell down, fainted.

    "Crawdaunt is unable to battle!" Anabel called.

    "Huh......Crawdaunt, return. Pelipper, use Hydro Pump!"

    Pelipper took a deep breath, then fired a powerful jet of water out of its bill at Blaziken. Blaziken was caught off guard and got hit critically, fainting.

    "Blaziken is now unable to battle!"

    "Good work Blaziken, take a rest. Alakazam, let's finish this battle with one more Thunderpunch!"

    Alakazam went at Pelipper with fists crackling with voltage again, this time hitting its opponent head-on. Because Pelipper was both a Water type and a Flying type, it took incredible damage and fainted.

    "Pelipper is unable to battle! The winner is Rich!"

    Without another word, the sailor recalled Pelipper and stormed away. Anabel went up to Rich, hugged him, and gave him a kiss.

    "Great show, that was."

    "Yeah, but he was weak," Rich replied as he recalled Alakazam.

    "This is the captain," a voice on the ship's PA said. "We will be making land at Gateon Port within the hour. Thank you for choosing the S.S. Athena."

    "Well. Sounds like we better get our bags together in our room and prepare, eh?"

    "Sure, Rich. I've never been to Orre before, so you can imagine how exciting this is for me."

    "That's why I chose this vacation. I've not been to Orre in a long time myself, but I decided on this for you."

    As they talked, Rich and Anabel walked out of the grand hall toward their room.........

    ------------------------------------------------------------------

    Gateon Port was always an exciting place to be. The harbor town bustled with business, from the merchant ships bringing all kinds of exotic merchandise to the world-famous Krabby Club, which now was an inn as well as a bar and restauraunt. The signature of Gateon--its lighthouse--towered over the other buildings on its own little island just off the mainland.

    As the S.S. Athena pulled into port, two large metal bridges had to rotate to make space for it. The ship pulled up to the dock perfectly and a motorized staircase descended to connect the dock to the ship---and soon, Gateon Port was even more busy as all the passengers disembarked.

    "So where should we visit first?" Anabel asked.

    "We could start here, in Gateon Port."

    "No, let's save Gateon for last, since we'll be here to get back on the ship when it leaves anyway."

    Rich nodded in agreement, then pulled a travel guide out of his pocket. He unfolded it and the two of them read it over.

    "All trainers seeking to participate in the Colosseum Challenge circuit must recieve a pass from Professor Krane at the Pokémon HQ Lab....." Anabel read aloud. "Let's make that our first stop."

    "Fine by me. It says there's a Parts Shop in this town that sells desert scooters, so we'll pick one up for traveling around."

    Having found themselves in agreement on buying a scooter and traveling around Orre with it, Rich and Anabel ventured to the east side of town. Soon they found the Parts Shop---the fact that it had a large metal sculpture of a scooter on its roof gave it away---and went in. Right inside was the front desk, which was being worked by an old man in an orange shirt.

    "Hi, are you the one we ask for to buy things here?" Rich asked.

    "Oh, of course. Name's Makan. I run this shop. What can I do for you today?"

    "We'd like to see about buying a scooter," Anabel answered to Makan.

    "That's doable. We have several different models available, depending on what you plan to use it for."

    "My wife and I came here on vacation, and we'd like something that can take us all around the Orre Region."

    "Oh? Sure, that would be our two-person Hover Scooter then. Let me just make sure we have one in stock, OK?" Rich and Anabel nodded. "This will just take a moment. Perr! PERR!!"

    "What, Grandpa?" a voice said from up the staircase inside the shop.

    "Perr, go out back and find a Hover Scooter of the two-person model, alright? We've got some customers who want one."

    A lanky young man wearing a striped shirt and a red knit cap came down the stairs.

    "We have those, I know for sure. I just checked a few hours ago, Grandpa......Oh?" Perr had noticed Rich and Anabel, and seemed surprised. "Are you two maybe Rich and Anabel? The ones who beat down Enigma Shadow a year ago?"

    "That's us," Anabel confirmed. "You've heard of us, I guess."

    "Heard of you? Believe it or not, you've got quite a following in this region. The ONBS was covering your heroics the whole time!"

    "ONBS........"

    "That stands for Orre News Broadcasting Service. They formed eight years ago during the very first Shadow Incident as a group of kids dedicated to helping take down Cipher. A short time later the Kids' Grid turned into ONBS, dedicated to broadcasting the unvarnished truth with the goal of preventing Cipher from rising again."

    "That's nice and all, Perr....." Makan interrupted, "but have you forgotten that they are paying customers?"

    "Oh! Oh, I'm sorry. A two-person Hover Scooter? Let me go fetch one out for you."

    Perr left through the back of the shop. Makan, meanwhile, had an exasperated look on his face.

    "You can imagine what I've got to go through to keep him in line. Eight years ago I operated a Junk Shop in a town called The Under, and Perr used to help me. But then he joined the Kids' Grid and started taking parts from my shop and giving them to the head of the Kids' Grid for their broadcasts."

    "And you knew about this?" Rich seemed surprised. "Why didn't you stop him?"

    "I was going to confront him later on once Cipher was defeated, but then ONBS formed.....and the co-chairs of ONBS are the ones he gave parts to! Secc and Nett! So I figured it wasn't worth confronting him if his actions kept Cipher from returning."

    As Makan finished up his story, Perr returned through the front door of the shop.

    "I've got the scooter you asked for ready out front. Come have a look."

    Perr and Makan went outside, Rich and Anabel following close behind. Right there, on the front step of the shop, was a shiny white scooter with hover generators where the wheels would normally be.

    "Our finest model," Makan said proudly. "Capable of traveling anywhere in the Orre Region, even in the deep sands of the northeastern desert. Here, get on and give it a quick test ride to see if you like it."

    Rich got on first, Anabel on the seat behind him. With a twist of the handlebar, Rich started the scooter. It began hovering, then Rich steered it around a little. Feeling more comfortable, he drove it around in circles a few times, then stopped and got off.

    "Here, Anabel. You try it too."

    "Thanks!"

    Anabel moved forward to the front of the scooter and imitated what Rich had just done. She was even able to steer it in a figure-eight pattern, something Rich could not do.

    "Hey, you're better than me! I'm a Sunday driver compared to you, Anabel."

    "So, I guess you like it?"

    "Yes sir, Makan, we do," Anabel answered as she turned the scooter off and dismounted. "How much is it going to cost?"

    "Let's see......a Hover Scooter, two-person model......$7,500."

    "That's fine. With the all the reward money we got for helping capture Queen Shadow, we can easily afford that. Here."

    Rich took out his wallet, drew several bills out, and returned it to his pocket.

    "Here, Perr, take this inside and ring it up." Makan handed the money to Perr, who went back in the shop. "Say, before you leave, where are you heading for first?"

    "The Pokémon HQ Lab. Can you give us directions?"

    "It's very simple, Rich. Just leave Gateon Port and head due north. I hope you get there safely!"

    Rich and Anabel got back on the scooter and started it up.

    "Thanks!" Anabel called as Rich began to drive away.

    ------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The path between Gateon Port and the Pokémon HQ Lab was a verdant one running through a forest. Rich and Anabel were driving at a relaxed pace, enjoying the ride.

    "Ahhhhhh......" Rich took a deep breath. "Fresh forest air. Larousse might be one of the cleanest cities on the face of this planet but nothing compares to this."

    "Keep taking deep breaths like that and you'll inhale a Butterfree."

    Rich and Anabel both laughed.......but went silent when they heard something up ahead.

    "Give us all your money and you won't get hurt!" a male voice threatened.

    "And your Pokémon too!" a female voice added.

    "What's going on up there? Rich, hit the gas and see what's happening."

    Rich sped the scooter up, and they soon stopped at a chaotic scene. A red-haired woman wearing a light blue jacket, a royal blue shirt and pink shorts was laying on the ground, having been knocked off her scooter by a man and a woman in black armor. Anabel rushed to her aid while Rich confronted the thugs.

    "Are you alright?!" Anabel asked in panic as she helped the woman to her feet.

    "I'm fine....but help me get away from these people!"

    "Just who do you think you are?" the male thug threatened Rich. "We're busy, leave us alone."

    "You leave this lady alone, first."

    "Don't push your luck," the female crook began threatening as well. "Unless you think you can take us in a battle."

    "That's what we'll do! Come on, Anabel, let's give these thugs what for and punish them for bothering this young lady!"

    After making sure the woman who was attacked was alright, Anabel rushed to Rich's side.

    "Are you sure you want this? Fine. Let's go!"

    ///////////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Pkmn Trainer Rich and Tower Maiden Anabel
    ---vs.---
    Mystery Thug Clarent and Mystery Thug Arlen
    ///////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "You'll pay for bothering us! Go, Torkoal!" "He's right, you will pay! Go, Vibrava!"

    "Psssh. This is a joke. Go, Salamence!" "Let's make this quick, Rich. Go, Alakazam!"

    Rich's Salamence and Anabel's Alakazam faced down Clarent's Torkoal and Arlen's Vibrava.

    "Alakazam, Ice Punch!"

    Anabel's Alakazam's fists became icy cold, then it hit Vibrava with a powerful punch. It was an extremely effective hit, and Vibrava fainted.

    "Ayieeeeeh! I'm the one who paid!"

    Clarent glared angrily at Rich and Anabel, but he knew he could do nothing.

    "Hydro Pump, Salamence!"

    Salamence fired a jet of water from its mouth, hitting and instantly knocking out the Fire type Torkoal.

    "Argh! This was supposed to be an easy job!"

    ////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "How dare you!" Arlen screeched. "How dare you beat our Pokémon! Just who do you think you are?!"

    "OH!" Clarent screamed. "They're Rich and Anabel!"

    "The same ones who got Queen Shadow arrested? We've got to report this, now!"

    Clarent and Arlen ran off, then Rich and Anabel turned to the woman they had attacked.

    "Thank you for your help," she said gratefully. "My name is Rui. I was just going back to my home after shopping in Gateon Port when those thugs jumped me here."

    "Think nothing of it. Anabel and I couldn't have just left you there with them."

    "Are you two really the famous Rich and Anabel? The ones who were on the ONBS a lot last year?" Rich and Anabel nodded. "Wow, imagine meeting you here under such circumstances. There's one thing, though....they...they had Shadow Pokémon!"

    The reaction from both Rich and Anabel was one of jaw-dropping horror.

    "Shadow Pokémon?!?!!"

    "What?!!! Rich....NO! Not again....."

    "I'm really sorry to burden you with this," Rui continued, "but I'd appreciate it if you would accompany me to my home. It is the Northwest Orre Ranch just past the Pokémon HQ Lab."

    "Sure. Anabel and I were heading that way anyway."

    "Thank you. I live there with my husband Wes, the first Snagger of Shadow Pokémon from eight years ago. He'd be the one to talk to about what has happened here."

    As all were in agreement, Anabel and Rich got on their scooter, waited for Rui to get back on hers, and then they all started off towards the Northwest Orre Ranch.



    Rich and Anabel arrived in Orre but not long into their vacation, trouble occured. After saving Rui from two mysterious thugs, they are now heading to her home to meet her husband, the first Snagger of Shadow Pokémon. Could there be even more Shadow Pokémon and evil churning beneath Orre's surface?



    END of PROLOGUE
    Last edited by Nando; 28th August 2006 at 07:12 PM.

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    Nice Proluge
    Proud PearlShipper


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    Thank you! I should have the next chapter up rather soon. While waiting I recommend you read the first fic on the site.

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    CHAPTER ONE: Evil in Agate


    The Northwest Orre Ranch was located in the most verdant corner of the region. Tall trees formed a loose canopy that gave the area a comfortable amount of shade. A large field of grass ringed the ranch, serving the grazing needs of the many wild Miltank and Ponyta living there. As Rich and Anabel pulled up to the ranch house after Rui led them there, a young man with silver hair and wearing a long blue coat rushed out the front door to greet them.

    "Rui!" he screamed. "Where were you? What happened?!"

    The man helped Rui off her scooter as Rich and Anabel got off theirs.

    "Oh, Wes....." Rui answered. "I was attacked by two thugs with Shadow Pokémon. But these two brave people came to my rescue. You might know them."

    Wes turned to Rich and Anabel and looked them over.

    "Hmmmmm...yes, indeed I do. You're Rich and Anabel, the foes of Enigma Shadow. I saw you two on the ONBS news reports all the time last year. So what exactly happened?"

    "Well........Anabel and I were riding from Gateon Port on our way to the Pokémon HQ Lab. About....what was it, about halfway?" Anabel nodded. "About halfway we encountered two thugs dressed in black armor threatening Rui to give them all her money and Pokémon."

    "Of course, we couldn't leave her there," Anabel continued, "so we stopped. Rich and I helped Rui up and then we smashed the crooks in a battle. They took off on short order, screaming that they had to report something to someone."

    "And they had Shadow Pokémon, you say?"

    "Yes, they did. Oh my! I forgot to do formal introductions. Rich, Anabel, this is my husband Wes."

    Rich and Anabel shook hands with Wes.

    "The pleasure's ours. Please, do come in. We've got plenty of refreshments and food, and we need to talk about what happened right away."

    Wes and Rui went inside, so Rich and Anabel followed them. The four sat down at a wooden table in the kitchen, which was surprisingly large and modern for a ranch house. The floor was tiled and shined to a great luster, and all the appliances were twenty-first century technology.

    "There was a Shadow Pokémon encounter again....." Wes thought aloud in a grave tone. "This is troubling. We're going to need help to track down those criminals...."

    "My father could help," Anabel volunteered. "He gave Rich the Snag Machine we used to stop Enigma Shadow last year."

    "Interesting. Are you the daughter of Professor Krane?"

    "No, but my father is a professor. His name's Ein."

    At the mere mention of Ein's name, Wes and Rui lept from their seats and drew out Poké Balls in preparation for a battle.

    "Damn it, Wes! They're Cipher!!!"

    "Some heroes you are! Begone! GET OUT!!"

    "Oh no! No! No! We aren't Cipher!"

    "My father and mother left Cipher and helped us bring Enigma Shadow down! We aren't evil!"

    Wes and Rui relaxed a bit.

    "Yikes. Rui, that gave me quite a shock."

    "Me too. But it seems we'll have to talk to him to get anywhere with this problem."

    They all agreed to call Ein for help, so they went to the videophone and dialed his number. Soon, a young man with gray hair who was dressed in a sharp black suit appeared on the screen.

    "Steven Stone, Battle Tower."

    "Steven, it's Rich."

    "Rich! How are you? Did you and Anabel get to Orre yet?"

    "Yes. Is Ein there? We need to talk to him right away."

    "She's pregnant, isn't she?"

    "I am NOT. Just put my father on the line."

    Steven chuckled and disappeared from the screen, although his voice could still be heard.

    "Hey, Professor! Rich and Anabel are on the phone!"

    "Okay! Gimme a second, I'll be right there!"

    "Do I look pregnant?" Anabel hissed under her breath to Rich. He shook his head 'no.'

    Just at that moment, a man in a white lab coat sporting sharp glasses and slicked back dark blue hair appeared on the screen.

    "Heheh. How are you two doing?"

    "Anabel and I are fine....but something bad is afoot."

    "What? What has happened?"

    "Papa, we saw.....them! Two Shadow Pokémon!"

    "WHAT!!?! Where are you?"

    "Currently the Northwest Orre Ranch," Wes volunteered.

    "That...that voice......Wes?!?! It's been a long time!"

    "Yes it has," Rui added.

    "And Rui too? So just what is going on here?"

    "Long story short, Anabel and I were riding from Gateon Port to the Pokémon HQ Lab when we ran into these two thugs. They were completely clad in black armor and were terrorizing Rui when we stepped in and crushed them in a battle. Apparently they had used a Shadow Torkoal and Shadow Vibrava."

    "Hmmmm....that's troubling. Maria and Parfrida are still safely behind bars, so I doubt Enigma Shadow has returned. Perhaps they made more Shadow Pokémon than listed in the data Nascour gave me and they're scattered around Orre."

    "That's good and all.....but I'll need the Snag Machine again to get them."

    "Uh......I can't help you there, Rich. The distance between your present location and Larousse City is much too far for me to transfer it."

    "How about Prof. Krane?" Wes suggested. "He does have a Snag Machine."

    "There's an idea. Go talk to Prof. Krane and get the Snag Machine from him. Use it to catch any Shadow Pokémon you find, and I'll be here searching for any data I can find. Good luck out there."

    Ein hung up, and the screen turned off.

    "Well, I guess you'll be on your way," Wes said. "Before you go, let me get your P*DA number so we can contact you with anything we find." Rich gave Wes his P*DA number. "Thank you. I'll get in touch to let Prof. Krane know you're coming."

    Rich and Anabel said their goodbyes to Wes and Rui and thanked them for their hospitality, then left. They got on their scooter, turned around, and drove off south towards the Lab.....

    ------------------------------------------------------------------

    It wasn't long until Rich and Anabel reached the Pokémon HQ Lab. The building couldn't be missed---it was large, two stories tall, and had a giant Poké Ball on its roof. They parked the scooter, got off, and started towards the glass double doors at the Lab's entrance. Before they got there, a man in a white lab coat with messy brown hair stepped out and met them.

    "Hello! Are you Rich and Anabel?" The two heroes nodded. "I'm Professor Krane. Wes contacted me and told me you were coming."

    "Yes. We came here to see about two things---I need to get a pass for the Orre Colosseum Challenge, and I need to get your Snag Machine."

    "It's sad that Shadow Pokémon have appeared again. Wes told me everything. I'd be glad to help, but may I show you around the lab first?"

    "That's fine. Right, Rich?"

    "No problem here."

    Krane began to go back inside with Rich and Anabel in tow, but before he got far a young man in a sharp blue outfit rushed out.

    "Professor! They've arrived, correct?"

    "Yes, Aferd, they're right here."

    "Is it okay if I challenge Rich to a battle?"

    "Go ahead! Do you accept his challenge, Rich?"

    "How's three-on-three sound?"

    "Okay! Let's get started!"

    /////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Pkmn Trainer Rich ---vs.--- Supertrainer Aferd
    /////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "Let's see what you're made of. Go, Ninjask and Furret!"

    "No, let's see what you're made of. Tyranitar, Blaziken, go!"

    "Ninjask, use Aerial Ace! Furret, aid it with Helping Hand!"

    Furret jumped onto Ninjask's back, then the bug Pokémon rose to incredible speed and flew right into Blaziken. The combined hit from the two of them caused incredible damage to Blaziken, and it fainted. Rich jumped in shock.

    "Blaziken!"

    "Blaziken is unable to battle!" Krane called out. "The first round goes to Aferd!"

    "So he's going to play it that way......Blaziken, return. Go, Milotic! Tyranitar, hit them both with Rock Slide!"

    Tyranitar drilled the ground forcefully with its claws, kicking up a multitude of boulders at Ninjask and Furret. Ninjask took a critical hit and fainted, leaving Furret to fall off and get hit as well.

    "Ninjask is unable to battle! This round goes to Rich, and the score is now tied!"

    "Ninjask, return! You're good. I should've expected no less from the famous hero. Go, Noctowl! Furret, use Brick Break on Tyranitar!"

    Furret dashed at Tyranitar and wound up to swing.

    "Counter it, Tyranitar!"

    Just as Furret swung, Tyranitar simply caught the Pokémon. Though it still took a strong hit, Tyranitar managed to swing Furret around and toss it, causing critical damage.

    "Now Milotic, Surf!"

    Milotic formed a giant wave of water and crashed it onto Aferd's team. Furret was overwhelmed and fainted, Noctowl hit but less so.

    "Furret is unable to battle! The leader is now Rich!"

    "Furret, return........Noctowl, Hypnosis!"

    Noctowl locked eyes with Tyranitar. The bird's eyes glowed red, soon Tyranitar's did the same---and it then fell asleep.

    "Can't use Tyranitar now......finish it, Milotic! Blizzard!"

    Milotic reared back and lauched a blast of ice and wind at Noctowl. Noctowl tried to escape....but failed. It was KO'd.

    "Noctowl is unable to battle! Rich is the winner!"

    "Yikes! It's true, he's really strong!"

    ////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "Well! I must say I didn't expect to lose like that. With you around, Rich, Orre should stay at peace for a long time!"

    Satisfied, Aferd went back into the Lab.

    "Good job, Rich!" Krane congratulated. "You have an incredible aptitude for battling. No wonder Enigma Shadow fell to you. Come inside, I have something to show you."

    Rich and Anabel followed Krane into the Lab. It was a very clean, organized place--the gray floors and fixtures were all neatly polished and positioned. Krane led them to a door on the left side of the room, which led into a small office. The office had a whiteboard with formulas written on it, several bookcases, and a strange cylinder-like case against the wall. There were also stairs to the Lab's basement.

    "Wait here a minute," Krane said before disappearing into the basement. He returned several minutes later with some clothing. "You two aren't going to last long in the rough parts of Orre looking as you do. I've gotten some new clothes for you, I'll step out while you change."

    Krane put the clothes down, left the room, and closed the door. Rich and Anabel quickly changed out of their old clothes and put on the new ones---Rich's was a black buttoned vest with dark red slacks and a black cowboy hat, Anabel's a blouse and pants cutting off at the ankle of similar colors. The colors of their hair clashed with the new clothes, but they rather liked the outfits anyway. Krane came back in after a few more minutes.

    "There. You look good, and you'll be able to get along in the rough corners of Orre now. Lots of cowboys and roughnecks run around in the desert areas, and they would've eaten you alive if you wore your old clothes. Now I have something more for you, Rich."

    "What is it?"

    "Come over and see."

    Krane lifted the top of the cylindrical case off and took out two machines---a headset-like device and a Snag Machine just like Ein's. Rich took off his hat, put on the headset, and replaced the hat, then put the Snag Machine on his left arm like before.

    "Ahhh......this feels familiar."

    "You're already familiar with the Snag Machine, I'm sure. The headset is a device I invented called the Aura Reader. It will activate and show you the black aura surrounding a Shadow Pokémon when you encounter one."

    "Very handy, Rich. Now I won't have to use that Shadow Scope any more."

    "True. Thank you for the equipment, Professor."

    "You're very welcome. I have something I'd like for you to help me with, too. Please come with me downstairs."

    Krane led Rich and Anabel down the stairs into the basement. Several metal lockers were against the wall, and in front of them was a large glowing circle with two smaller glowing circles next to it. A scientist stood at the controls of the machine, and a beautiful blonde woman dressed in a blue shirt and gray shorts was just stepping off of the circle on the left-hand size of the large circle. Krane walked over to the scientist.

    "So how did it go?"

    "The system's working just fine, Professor."

    "How about you? Was your experience worthwhile?"

    "Yes, it was," the woman answered. "It has opened my eyes to new types of battling strategy. I must go and analyze my results at once."

    The woman approached the stairs, but stopped when she saw Rich and Anabel.

    "Hmmm? Haven't I seen you two somewhere before?"

    Krane rushed up to them.

    "Oh dear, I'm so sorry! Let me explain what's going on. Rich, Anabel, this is Malin, a trainer who stopped by to help me test an invention of mine."

    "Rich and Anabel......the pleasure is mine. I'd really love to chat, but I must be off for home now."

    Malin went up the stairs and left.

    "What was she testing, exactly?" Anabel asked.

    "My new inventon. It is an upgraded Battle Sim System, able to create holograms of any species of Pokémon for virtual battles. I have been developing it for years, and it has finally been completed. Please, I invite you to take a virtual training battle on it."

    "Fine, I'll do it!"

    Rich stepped onto the circle that Malin had been on.

    "Fire it up! Two on two match!"

    The scientist flipped some switches, then a hologram of a male trainer who looked a lot like Aferd appeared.

    //////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Pkmn Trainer Rich ---vs.--- Sim Trainer Applet
    //////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    /Sim Trainer Applet sent out Kingler and Latios!

    "Kingler and Latios? I can take this guy down! Go, Ludicolo and Tyranitar!"

    /Pkmn Trainer Rich sent out Pinsir and Latias!

    Holograms of a Pinsir and a Latias appeared on Rich's side, facing his opponent's hologram Kingler and Latios.

    "Huh?! I called out Ludicolo and Tyranitar!"

    "It's a simulated battle," Krane advised. "Your Pokémon aren't used here, you have to use the Pokémon generated by the system."

    "Alright. Latias, Dragon Claw!"

    /Latias used Dragon Claw!

    Rich's Latias flew forward and slashed the opposing Latios, causing its health to drop sharply.

    /Latios flew up high!

    "Alright.......Pinsir, Submission!"

    /Pinsir used Submission!

    Pinsir smashed into Kingler, causing high damage to it and taking some backlash as well.

    /Kingler used Crabhammer!

    Kingler rushed at Pinsir and whacked it with its claws, causing a slight drop in Pinsir's health.

    "Latias, Thunderbolt that Kingler out of here!"

    /Latias used Thunderbolt!

    Latias zapped Kingler with lightning, sapping all of its remaining HP.

    /Kingler fainted!

    /Latios used Fly!

    Latios dive-bombed Pinsir, taking off much of its remaining health.

    "Go for the win, Pinsir! Guillotine!"

    /Pinsir used Guillotine!

    Pinsir rushed at Latios with its pincers wide open, but Latios dodged.

    /Pinsir's attack missed!

    "OK, that's fine. Latias, finish it with Dragon Claw!"

    /Latias used Dragon Claw!

    Latias flew forward and slashed Latios again, knocking it out.

    /Latios fainted!

    /Player defeated Sim Trainer Applet!

    //////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "That'll do!"

    Krane had his assistant turn off the system as Rich stepped off.

    "That was fun, Professor. I enjoyed myself."

    "I'm glad! That's the best honor a scientist can receive, praise of his inventions. I'm working on getting the upgraded system in the Realgam Tower. Can I have your P*DA number so I can contact you in the future?"

    Rich gave Krane the P*DA number.

    "Thank you. I'll give you a call if I have new information. For now you should head to Agate Village and talk to its master, Eagun, about the Shadow Pokémon you saw. Agate's not far from here, head to the southeast. You can't miss it."

    "Thanks! Come on Rich, let's hit the road."

    "Wait!! Rich, I forgot to give you this!" Krane handed Rich a folder-like device with a Poké Ball carved into its cover. "That's your Colosseum Challenge pass. When you win a knockout challenge at a Colosseum for the first time, you'll receive an emblem for your victory. Amass them all and you can enter the championship challenge at the Orre Colosseum."

    "Thank you, Professor. Now, Anabel, we're ready to go!"

    ------------------------------------------------------

    Agate Village wasn't far from the Lab, and as a result Rich and Anabel arrived there quickly. The village was built into the side of a mountain and ringed by a river that started from a huge waterfall on the east side, flowed around, and then headed up north towards the Northwest Orre Ranch. Several other smaller waterfalls flowed through the quaint, verdant town. At the top was a large house built out of an old tree, below it several paths with buildings made of gray stone.

    Rich and Anabel parked the scooter, got off, and walked calmly down the wooden path crossing the river and up the hill at the entrance.

    "So this is Agate Village," Anabel said as she looked around. "What a lovely place!"

    "Indeed it is," Rich replied as he read through the travel booklet. "Agate Village: A quiet town built in the wooded area to the northwest of the Orre Desert. Known widely as the home of many retired trainers and also the location of the legendary Relic Stone, an artifact said to be imbued with Celebi's time traveling powers."

    "A retirement village? Y'know, I wouldn't mind living here when we get that old."

    "Me neither. Now, we've got to look for Eagun....."

    "You children are looking to meet Eagun?"

    An old man shuffled up to them.

    "Yes. Do you know where he is?" Rich asked.

    "Why, of course. Eagun lives up in the house at the top of the village. The one built out of the great tree."

    "Thank you. Come on, Rich."

    Rich and Anabel walked up the steep paths around the village on their way up to Eagun's home. By the time they reached the front door of his house, they were exhausted.

    "Whew........" Rich gasped. "How do you think they walk up those paths?! We're sixty years younger than most of them and we're tired from it!"

    "I don't know. But we're here, so.....we're here, I guess."

    Anabel rang the doorbell on the house. Soon, an old woman in a gray shirt with her hair in a net answered.

    "Hello, there. Is there something I can do for you?"

    "We were told to come to this house. We're looking for a man named Eagun."

    "Oh! You must be Rich and Anabel, the visitors Prof. Krane contacted us about. Come in."

    The old woman let Rich and Anabel in, then closed the door. She took them into the kitchen of the house and sat down in a wooden chair.

    "My name is Beluh. I'm Eagun's wife. He's just upstairs writing in his journal about his adventures with his Pikachu, so he'll be down soon."

    Almost as if on cue, an old man with long white hair and a long white beard clad in a blue robe rushed down the stairs and into the kitchen.

    "Beluh! Have the guests arrived.......huh?"

    "Yes, dear, they have. Rich and Anabel just arrived a moment ago."

    Eagun calmed down and sat in a chair opposite Beluh.

    "Well then, I guess we can get right down to business. You saw Shadow Pokémon near Gateon Port?"

    "That's right. Anabel and I were riding to the Pokémon HQ Lab from Gateon when we saw them."

    "What a sad world this is, that Shadow Pokémon have appeared yet again. Let me explain how I can help you. In this village there is an artifact called the Relic Stone that is in my care. When a Shadow Pokémon is purified enough, the power in the Relic Stone can break the final lock on that Pokémon's heart and complete the purification process......"

    Suddenly, a man dressed like a farmer rushed in through the front door.

    "Eagun! Eagun, sir, there's trouble! Some outsiders shoved me down and went into the Relic Forest!"

    "WHAT?!! Oh, forget the details! It can wait!"

    Eagun rushed out, but the man stayed and turned around to face Rich, Anabel and Beluh.

    "Heheheh. What a fool. The Admin in charge of our squad will deal with him. As for you three, you can't go anywhere after seeing me!"

    The farmer spun around and turned into another armored thug.

    ///////////////////////////////////////////////
    Pkmn Trainer Rich ---vs.--- Spy Royce
    //////////////////////////////////////////////

    "Heheheh. Here we go! Go, Venonat and Yanma!"

    "Bah, this won't be hard. Go, Blaziken and Tyranitar!"

    After Rich sent his Pokémon out, the Aura Reader activated and showed a black aura around Yanma.

    "A Shadow Yanma........fine! Blaziken, Flamethrower!"

    Blaziken reared back and blew a stream of fire at Venonat.

    "Venonat, dodge and use Signal Beam!"

    Venonat jumped out of the way of the Flamethrower and fired a multicolored beam at Tyranitar, causing some damage.

    "Yanma, Shadow Rush!"

    Yanma became surrounded with the shadowy aura and crashed into Blaziken at high speed, doing light damage.

    "Tyranitar, he can't dodge another one! Fire Blast!"

    Tyranitar aimed and blasted a large fireball at Venonat. This time the Bug Pokémon couldn't dodge, took critical damage, and fainted.

    "Venonat! Awwww......Venonat, return. Go, Beautifly! Yanma, Shadow Mist!"

    Yanma flapped its wings at high speed, casting a dark cloud towards Rich's team. This cloud muddled up the movement of Blaziken and Tyranitar.

    "Blaziken, rid me of that Beautifly so I can focus on Yanma. Blaze Kick!"

    Blaziken lept into the air. As it hit the peak of its jump, a fireball formed around its foot---then it smashed down onto Beautifly and knocked it out.

    "Ahhhhhh!! Beautifly!!!!......return......"

    "Tyranitar, use Shock Wave!"

    Tyranitar sent a small pulse of electricity at Yanma. It hit and caused high damage.

    "Shadow Rush!"

    Yanma again surrounded itself with the shadowy aura and tackled Blaziken.

    "Blaziken, use Brick Break! That should be enough!"

    Blaziken reared back, then lunged at Yanma and hit it with its claws. Yanma didn't get injured much by this attack, but Rich seemed to be intending for that.

    "That'll do! Snag Ball, go!"

    Rich took a Poké Ball and threw it using the Snag Machine. The ball snatched up Yanma, fell to the floor, and began shaking.





    After a few moments, it stopped shaking and pinged. Rich had Snagged Yanma.

    "My bugs got stomped~~"

    ////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    Royce ran off, leaving Rich, Anabel and Beluh.

    "What a joke," Rich laughed. "That guy was easy."

    "You're impressive," Beluh commented. "I'm concerned about my husband though. In his day he was called the greatest trainer, and he still thinks he is today. It seems that the Relic Forest might have been a trap. Please, go there and find him."

    "Where is it?"

    "Anabel, it is through a cave in the center of the village. Go down the hill next to the Pokémon Center to find it."

    Rich and Anabel nodded, then rushed out. They ran down the paths to the Pokémon Center, then found the path leading to the cave. They followed it......and at the other side of the cave, there was a small forest. The trees were spaced just right for letting in enough sunlight, and a small river flowed through the area. In the middle, just ahead of Rich and Anabel on the stone path, was a pillar of rock with curved segments. Eagun was here, as was a female spy and a red-haired woman dressed in a purple and red one piece swimsuit.

    "Get out of our Relic Forest!" Eagun shouted. "Or I'll be forced to kick you out myself!"

    "You just can't get it through that old skull of yours, can you?" the woman shot back. "The leader of Enigma Shadow has ordered me, Vivian, to destroy the Relic Stone. I have no mercy for anyone who dares oppose us, even if it's a senior citizen like you!"

    //////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Myth Trainer Eagun ---vs.--- Shadow Admin Vivian
    /////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    [Vivian backflips over once, then steps forward and sends out a Quagsire]

    "Off we go, Pikachu! Our first battle in a long time!"

    Eagun threw a Poké Ball to send out his only Pokémon, Pikachu.

    "Pikachu, use Slam!"

    Pikachu rushed forward and slammed Quagsire with its tail. Quagsire took some damage from the hit.

    "Hah, this isn't even funny. Quagsire, Earthquake!"

    Quagsire jumped and stomped the ground, creating a shock wave. It hit Pikachu and instantly knocked it out.

    "Hahahahah! Now how will you stop me?"

    //////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "Fufufu......yes, I told you not to interfere. Your Pokémon has paid the price for your foolishness."

    "Pikachu, my friend! Are you alright?"

    "Piika!!! Piiiiiiiiiiikkaaaa....chuuuu....."

    Rich and Anabel shoved past the peon to confront Vivian.

    "What do you think you're doing? Get out of here!"

    "Rich and Anabel, what a surprise. Bella, what were you doing? Get rid of these fools!"

    "Yes, lady Vivian! Right away!"

    /////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Pkmn Trainer Rich ---vs.--- Shadow Peon Bella
    ////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "I won't disappoint you, lady Vivian! Go, Ponyta and Loudred!"

    "This shouldn't take too long. Go, Milotic and Blaziken!"

    Just as Rich sent out his Pokémon, the Aura Reader activated and revealed Loudred as a Shadow Pokémon.

    "Shadow Loudred. Blaziken, use Blaze Kick on it!"

    Blaziken rushed forth and smashed into Loudred with a fiery kick.

    "Ponyta, hit back with Bounce!"

    Ponyta sprang up into the air and came down hard on Blaziken. The attack did quite a bit of damage.

    "Milotic, Hydro Pump!"

    Milotic fired a pressurized jet of water from its mouth at Ponyta. The fire horse Pokémon took critical damage and fainted.

    "Water........Ponyta, return! Go, Aipom! Loudred, Shadow Rush!"

    Loudred surrounded itself with the shadowy aura and tackled Milotic.

    "Blaziken, let's make this a quick one! Sky Uppercut!"

    Blaziken reared back and swung, hitting Aipom with a powerful uppercut. The Pokémon was hit into the sky, and when it came down it had fainted.

    "AIPOM!!! Awww....return."

    "Milotic, let's finish this up. Dragonbreath!"

    Milotic blew a cloud of foul-smelling breath on Loudred, weakening it further and paralyzing it.

    "Shadow Rush, again!"

    Loudred couldn't move due to the paralysis, however.

    "Snag Ball, go!"

    Rich threw a Snag Ball at the Loudred. It absorbed its target, fell to the ground, and began rocking......


    ......once........




    .......twice........



    .....three times. Another successful Snag.

    "Lady Vivian!!"

    /////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    Bella ran off after her humiliating defeat.

    "So you are not weak," Vivian addressed Rich. "I should have expected no less from the trainer who took down Queen Shadow. But I should inform you that we have resurrected Enigma Shadow, and we have a new leader. On that note, are you prepared to meet a watery demise?"

    "Bring it on!"

    "Very well. En garde!"

    //////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Pkmn Trainer Rich ---vs.--- Shadow Admin Vivian
    //////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    [Vivian backflips over once, then steps forward and sends out Quagsire and a Wartortle]

    "I'll chase you out in Eagun's place! Go, Ludicolo and Alakazam! Alakazam, Thunderpunch!"

    Alakazam's fists crackled with electricity, then it delivered a powerful blow to Wartortle. Surprisingly, Wartortle did not faint from the attack.

    "What?! How did you make it through that?"

    "I'm an Admin. My party has been trained to a higher standard than most."

    "Fine, then I'll up it a notch too! Ludicolo, hit Quagsire with Giga Drain!"

    Ludicolo rushed towards Quagsire, but Quagsire put up a Protect before it could hit.

    "Hah, you thought I'd be that easy? Wartortle, Aerial Ace that Ludicolo!"

    Wartortle withdrew into its shell, spun around, then flipped into the air and crashed down onto Ludicolo for a super-effective hit.

    "Aghhh......Alakazam, Thunderpunch it again!"

    Alakazam hit Wartortle with another electrically charged punch, fainting it.

    "Ah, that's fine. Wartortle, return! Go, Octillery!"

    As soon as the Octillery came out, Rich's Aura Reader activated. It was Vivian's Shadow Pokémon.

    "Ludicolo, try another Giga Drain!"

    Ludicolo again went after Quagsire......but Quagsire again blocked with Protect.

    "Hahah! Keep fighting, it's rather entertaining. Octillery, Shadow Sky!"

    Octillery launched a flash of black light into the sky, where it burst into an aura that covered the area. Soon bursts of flashing light rained down from the aura, striking Quagsire, Ludicolo and Alakazam.

    "Alakazam, Psychic!"

    Alakazam's eyes glowed blue, then a blue aura surrounded Octillery as Alakazam lifted it up. After a moment Alakazam crashed Octillery back down, causing some damage.

    "Should I send Ludicolo after Quagsire again.......you know what, yes! Giga Drain!"

    Ludicolo rushed once more at Quagsire. Quagsire began to form another Protect......but failed. Ludicolo hit Quagsire and began draining its energy. Before long, Quagsire was down and out.

    "Ack! What?!?!"

    "Protect fails more often if used in succession. An Admin like you should've known that.

    "Oh, shut up with your attitude! Quagsire, return! Go, Metang! Octillery, Shadow Wave!"

    Octillery sent out a wave of shadow energy, doing some damage to both of Rich's Pokémon. After it did, bursts of light rained down and struck Metang, Alakazam and Ludicolo.

    "Alakazam, Fire Punch that Metang!"

    Alakazam's fists this time turned into small fireballs, then it delivered a powerful blow to Metang.

    "Ludicolo, Brick Break!"

    Ludicolo jumped forth again and punched Octillery, doing some more damage to it.

    "Octillery, Shadow Rush!"

    Octillery surrounded itself with the shadowy aura and tackled Alakazam.

    "Metang, Aerial Ace!"

    Metang compacted its body then dive-bombed Ludicolo for a powerful hit. Bursts of flashing light again rained down from the shadowy aura, htting all the non-Shadows.

    "Alakazam, Thunder Wave!"

    Alakazam emitted weak pulses of electricity from its body, paralyzing Octillery.

    "That's it! Snag Ball, go!"

    Rich threw a Snag Ball at the paralyzed, weakened Octillery. The Shadow Pokémon was absorbed into the ball, which fell to the ground and rocked......


    ....once........





    ......twice.........




    .......three times. Rich had successfully Snagged Octillery.

    "My Shadow Pokémon! Oh, now I will make you pay! Go, Seadra! Metang, use Meteor Mash!"

    Metang's claw glowed with a bright shine, then it delivered a crushing blow to Alakazam, who fainted as a result.

    "So you took one down. Big deal. Return, Alakazam! Go, Blaziken!"

    As soon as Rich sent out Blaziken, ever more bursts of light rained down and struck all the Pokémon in battle.

    "Blaziken, finish off that Metang with a Flamethrower!"

    Blaziken loosed a stream of flames at Metang. When the fire cleared, Metang had fainted.

    "I won't be bested by you! Return, Metang! Go, Clamperl!"

    "Ludicolo, Giga Drain!"

    Ludicolo jumped onto Seadra and drained nearly all of its energy.

    "Seadra, time for a Hydro Pump!"

    Seadra fired a jet of pressurized water at Blaziken, but its attack missed. Bursts of light hit all the Pokémon one more time, then the shadowy aura cleared from the sky.

    "Blaziken, Sky Uppercut!"

    Blaziken rushed forward and hit Seadra with a powerful uppercut. Seadra, already weakened, couldn't take any more and fainted.

    "...............Seadra....return......"

    "Go for the win, Ludicolo! Giga Drain!"

    Ludicolo pounced on Clamperl and drained all of its energy. The critical damage from this attack made Clamperl faint.

    "Oh no! I've been washed out!"

    ////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "I don't believe this! How could I lose to you?!!"

    "Your team was very weak......."

    "Shut up! Tell you what, I'll let it go this time. But if you ever mess with me again, ooh, you'll be sorry for it!"

    Vivian ran off.

    "That was incredible work, Rich," Eagun complimented.

    "Think nothing of it. We couldn't let them destroy the Relic Stone."

    "Is your Pikachu okay, Eagun?" Anabel asked in concern.

    "He's fine. Just a little shaken up, right pal?"

    "Pika piiiiiiiiiiiikkaaa!"

    "Now, I am glad you came to my rescue. Thank you. It is frightening, however, that Enigma Shadow has been resurrected. Please let me have your P*DA number so I can call you with anything I hear." Rich gave Eagun the P*DA number. "Very well. You should go back to the Pokémon HQ Lab and tell Krane what has happened. I will be in touch."

    --------------------------------------------------------------

    Back at the Pokémon HQ Lab, Krane met Rich and Anabel in the main lobby.

    "So how was Agate Village?"

    "There was trouble there. I battled several crooks with Shadow Pokémon, and not only that, they have resurrected Enigma Shadow."

    "What?!! Is this true, what he says, Anabel?"

    "Yes, unfortunately......."

    "This calls for something special. Come with me."

    Krane led Rich and Anabel to the room on the right side of the first floor, a room with a glowing plate on the floor and a touchscreen control panel right in front of it.

    "This is the Purify Chamber, Rich and Anabel. We developed it three years ago to purify the Shadow Pokémon made by Cipher, but we didn't expect to need it again. I'll need to get in touch with Ein to work with him on the purification of these new Shadow Pokémon."

    "Very well, where should Anabel and I go next?"

    "Pyrite Town. It is to the southeast but is rather far. There you can participate in the first Colosseum Challenge. Is that what you plan to do?"

    "Yes. Is that alright, Anabel?"

    "Sure is."

    "Let's hit the road, then."

    "I wish you luck in the challenges!" Krane called as they left the Lab.





    Enigma Shadow has returned! Rich managed to defeat two peons and Shadow Admin Vivian while Snagging their Shadow Pokémon. What awaits in Pyrite Town? Stay tuned!



    END of CHAPTER ONE

  5. #5
    追放されたバカ Nando's Avatar
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    CHAPTER TWO: Pyrite Colosseum Gold


    Pyrite Town. Perhaps this was the place Prof. Krane was talking about when he mentioned 'the rough parts of Orre.' The whole town was built into a thin, shallow, and muddy valley. The steel buildings hugging the valley walls were all different colors and sizes, sharing only their dilapidated condition. As Rich and Anabel pulled up at the entrance to the town limits and dismounted the scooter, they eyed the area warily.

    "Rich......I don't like the looks of this place. I bet there are lots of crooks about."

    "Pyrite used to have a really bad reputation as a town of lawless chaos, but since Cipher was defeated it's become peaceful. I doubt we'll have much trouble."

    Rich and Anabel walked into the town calmly, or at least as calmly as they could. Soon, a green haired man wearing all black and goggles on his head approached them.

    "Hello! Welcome to Pyrite Town! I'm Cail, the town's gatekeeper. I hope you'll enjoy your visit here."

    "See, Anabel? This guy's a good sort. I bet Pyrite's really improved since the last time I visited."

    "In fact, I'd like to help you celebrate your visit myself. I'll do that by introducing you to the deepest tradition of Pyrite. Let's battle!"

    ////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Pkmn Trainer Rich ---vs.--- Rogue Cail
    ////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "I'll show you what it means to be Pyrite's gatekeeper! Go, Houndoom and Granbull!"

    "Well, if that's your tradition, I'll show you mine--no mercy whatsoever! Go, Tyranitar and Salamence! Salamence, let's kick this off with a bang! Dragon Claw!"

    Salamence breathed green flames on its claws, then flew forward and slashed Houndoom with great power.

    "Houndoom, hit back! Crunch!"

    Houndoom was able to quickly make contact with Salamence due to the dragon's close proximity to it. Houndoom viciously crunched down on Salamence's wing, causing it to roar in pain and fly over itself in circles to throw the attack off---which it eventually did.

    "Tyranitar, Rock Slide!"

    Tyranitar drilled the ground with its claw, kicking up several large rocks at Cail's team. Both Granbull and Houndoom managed to dodge, however.

    "Ahaha! Take this, now---Brick Break!"

    Granbull tensed up all the muscles in its body. It then rushed at Tyranitar and punched forcefully, causing very high damage.

    "Salamence! Use another Dragon Claw on Houndoom!!"

    Salamence repeated its earlier attack, breathing green flames on its claw and flying at Houndoom.

    "Endure that hit!"

    Just before the hit, Houndoom braced itself. It took the impact of Dragon Claw head-on, but did not faint.

    "Now, Houndoom, follow it up with Reversal!"

    Houndoom howled......a bone-chilling, echoing howl. As it howled its body began to glow red, then when it was glowing a bright crimson shade, it suddenly rushed forward and slammed into Tyranitar. Tyranitar fainted.

    "Well! I must say I am surprised. You aren't Pyrite's gatekeeper for nothing! Tyranitar, return. Go, Milotic!"

    "Granbull, Double-Edge!"

    Granbull tensed up again, and rushed at Milotic. It hit with a crushing tackle and caused high damage to its target, then took some backlash to itself.

    "Salamence, finish off that Houndoom this time! Hydro Pump!"

    Salamence landed on Rich's side and fired a jet of water from its mouth at Houndoom. Houndoom attempted to Endure again.....but failed and fainted.

    "Gwoooh! Houndoom, return! Go, Shiftry!"

    "Milotic, Ice Beam!"

    The moment Shiftry popped out of Cail's Poké Ball, Milotic instantly fired a beam of ice at it. It had no chance to defend, and was taken down instantly.

    "Ahahahah! Well done, old friend! Well done!"

    "Nooooooh.....Shiftry, return.....Machamp, it's up to you now! Granbull, Facade!"

    Granbull glowed with rainbow colors then tackled Salamence. Salamence didn't take much from the blow.

    "Do it, Salamence! Brick Break!"

    Salamence flew up again, then dive-bombed Granbull with its claws extended out in front of it. The impact caused very high damage.

    "Milotic, let's start to wrap this up! Surf!"

    Rich thrust his arm out and pointed forward to accentuate this attack. Milotic formed a huge wave of water, then crashed it down on Cail's last two Pokémon---fainting Granbull and hitting Machamp fairly strongly.

    "G-Granbull, return! Go, Machamp, use Cross Chop!"

    Machamp lunged at Milotic with all four of its arms flailing in a crossing motion. Milotic managed to dodge the attack, but barely.

    "Salamence, the finisher! Aerial Ace!"

    Salamence turned around and dive-bombed Machamp from the air, instantly taking it down.

    "Gwoooooooooooooh!!! I trained my party well, too!"

    ///////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "Hahahah, I should've expected no less. I assume you're off to the Colosseum then?"

    "That's where we were going," Anabel replied.

    "I'll wish you luck there, then. Do check out the sights of Pyrite first, though."

    Cail walked off. Rich then took out and opened up the travel guide, looking for things to see in Pyrite Town.

    "Let's see, Anabel........Fateen's Fortune Telling Chamber: World-famous seer reads your fortune with a guarantee of accuracy! Sounds nice, wanna check it out?"

    "Sure, Rich....it is right in front of us."

    Sure enough, there it was.....a white building with the words "FORTUNE TELLING" painted over its door. Rich and Anabel went in, to find themselves across the table from a very old woman, Candles sat on the left and right sides of the table, a crystal ball in the middle.

    "Be it a person, place or luck, I will help you find it. Welcome, children, to Fateen's Fortune Telling Chamber. I will be pleased to divine your fate."

    "Yes, Miss Fateen......please, tell us what is in store for Anabel and I's marriage and what threats we will face from Enigma Shadow in the future."

    "Very well, your trust shall not be betrayed. Kwaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhh!!!!!!!"

    Fateen peered into her crystal ball, then recoiled slightly.

    "What is it?!"

    "A-Anabel.....it is......I see the black auras of Shadow Pokémon. I also see something truly nightmarish....it is an evil force never before seen in the world that can transform Pokémon into Shadow Pokémon. Darkness clouds my sight......but I can see that you will be betrayed by someone you thought you could trust and seperated from each other at this villain's hand. Your bond will be put to tests beyond comprehension as you struggle to overcome the awesome might of Enigma Shadow's new leader and their evil plan."

    "Is there more?" Rich asked nervously.

    "No. Only that you must speak to both Sherles, the chief of police, and Duking, the leader of Pyrite Town. Go to the circular building just down the road from here, that is Sherles's police outpost."

    Rich and Anabel nodded their thanks to Fateen, looked at each other gravely, and left. They went down the road without saying a word and entered the building Fateen had told them to. Inside there was a gray haired man in a police uniform sitting behind a desk. His gray moustache complemented his hair perfectly. Behind him were several wanted posters, the only one of any note being of a burly-looking man with jagged eyebrows and a jagged moustache.

    "Hrm? Have I seen your faces before?"

    "Perhaps, I've heard we've been on the ONBS before. My name is Rich Mistbloom, and this is my wife Anabel."

    "Pleased to meet the two of you! My name is Sherles. I'm the chief of police in this town. Is there something I can do for you?"

    "Rich and I have some rather bad news, Chief. Enigma Shadow, the evil organization we destroyed one year ago, has returned. They're in the Orre Region and producing Shadow Pokémon again."

    "Oh! Oh my....that is not good. I'll get the word out at once for Orre's residents to be vigilant. Are you kids heading off to the Colosseum?" Rich and Anabel nodded. "Maybe first you should stop off and talk to Duking and Silva, the managers of the Colosseum and leaders of this town. They might have information for you."

    "Thank you, sir. Anabel, we had better get going, we don't know what might be waiting for us."

    "Yeah, but which house is Duking's?"

    "It's the orange building with the Poké Ball painted on it," Sherles advised.

    "OK, thank you. Let's be on our way."

    Rich and Anabel left the police station and went farther into Pyrite Town. It wasn't long before Duking's office, a large white building (the cleanest and most upkept in all Pyrite) and the crumbling glass dome of the Colosseum all came into view. They went into Duking's office, where a muscular man in a black T-shirt sat behind a small desk. Standing next to him was a younger man with spiked silver hair.

    "Is this the place to talk to Mr. Duking?"

    "Wahahah! Indeed it is, lad!" The muscular man laughed. "I'm Duking and this is my assistant, Silva."

    "Pleased to meet you two," Silva nodded politely.

    "I already heard from Sherles that you were coming, Rich and Anabel." Duking seemed much more serious now. "It's terrible that Enigma Shadow has resurrected itself again. I have no information to give you, sadly. All I can say is that I hope you'll have time to compete at the Colosseum. Whoa! Speaking of which, I've got to be off to the Colosseum now! Silva, tend to these guests for me, OK?"

    Silva nodded, then Duking got up and left.

    "Well.......there's not much I can do for you, either. We don't take reservations for the Colosseum here, you need to sign up at the front desk there. I would recommend checking out the Museum, though. It's that big white building just before the bridge over where The Under used to be."

    "Thank you, Silva."

    "You're most welcome, Anabel. I'll be wishing for Enigma Shadow's defeat from here. I'll tell you what, though---this sure isn't a time to be dressing up like a Plusle. What a bummer....." Rich and Anabel's eyes went wide at Silva's offhand comment. "Oh! Strike that from the record! It's not like I said I wanted to wear ladies' dresses or anything like that. I will be wishing for your success."

    "Uh, thanks, I guess. Rich, let's go."

    Rich and Anabel left the building, walked a bit further down the road and went into the large white building. Right at the front they were greeted by a very short man with combed-over blue hair who was wearing a white lab coat and swirly glasses. He jumped when he heard them enter, and spun around in shock.

    "Waaah! Who goes there?!! Chobin knows who you two are! You are burglars!"

    "No we're not!"

    "My husband and I came to tour the museum!"

    "Chobin won't fall for your tricks! Chobin will mash you and stop your burglaring........"

    "Chobin! What is the matter? Why are you screaming?"

    A young man with spiky red hair appeared and approached Chobin. He was dressed in a yellow shirt with black sleeves, blue and orange pants, and he had a pair of round goggles around his neck.

    "Oh, sir! These two were going to beat Chobin up and steal the museum's treasures!"

    "Chobin, Chobin, Chobin.......these are the guests I told you to prepare for! Rich and Anabel Mistbloom!!!"

    "Oh!!! Chobin apologizes, then. Chobin did not recognize Rich and Anabel."

    "Sigh.......I welcome you to the Orre History Museum. I am Michael, the curator, and this is my aide Chobin. We founded this museum as an offshoot of ONBS to remind Orre's citizens of the two Shadow Incidents in our land---one of which I stopped when I had your Snag Machine three years ago."

    "Oh, wow! He could teach us a thing or two, right Rich?"

    "You said it."

    "So anyway, would you like a guided tour of our exhibits?"

    "Sure!"

    "I'm game."

    Michael turned and was about to leave, but Chobin spoke up again.

    "Sir, Chobin needs to go off to the Colosseum. May Chobin take the Robo Groudon? Chobin has stored his Pokémon in it."

    "Fine, Chobin, have fun."

    "Chobin wants to see you again, Rich. Chobin wants to battle you at the Colosseum."

    Chobin then left. Resuming the tour, Michael led Rich and Anabel into an elevator that went up one floor. They all got off at the stop, and Michael began leading them around. There was a statue of Wes and Rui, golden sculptures of Entei, Raikou and Suicune, a statue of a tall man with wild hair and a short, fat man that looked like an evil clown, and finally, a plaque with an inscription on it. Michael read the inscription aloud.

    "'Dedicated to Wes and Rui, the heroes of Orre. Stopped Cipher's Shadow Pokémon plan with a Snag Machine stolen from Team Snagem.' Let's move on to the second Shadow Incident."

    Michael led them back to the elevator, which took them up to the third floor. He showed them around the exhibits, which included statues of himself, Prof. Krane, a man with tall white hair and swirly glasses with Chobin, and a short old man that Rich and Anabel knew as Mr. Verich. Next to Verich's statue were statues of his sons, Ardos and Eldes. Without a word, Michael led Rich and Anabel to another elevator, which took them up to his office on the roof. Bookcases lined the white-tile walls and a large oak desk sat a bit out on the floor. A TV screen was mounted on the wall, and as they entered the office the news was coming on. The newscaster was a woman dressed in red with elegantly shaped purple hair.

    "We bring you ONBS News. ONBS has recieved word that Enigma Shadow, thought to have been defeated one year ago, has resurrected itself in the Orre Region. Citizens in all areas are urged to practice extra vigilance especially if you own Pokémon, as Enigma Shadow may try to kidnap them for creating Shadow Pokémon. An attack on Agate Village has already occured, and authorities suspect Gateon Port or Phenac City may be targeted next."

    "I can't believe they've come back," Michael said gravely. "I had hoped the work of our Museum and the ONBS would prevent it from happening again, but sadly it failed."

    "We're here, Anabel and I. While we challenge the Colosseums, we'll Snag all the Shadow Pokémon we see."

    "Speaking of the Colosseums, I had a thought. I would like to have a battle with you. After all, you're a Shadow Pokémon Snagger just like me."

    "I accept your challenge. Six-on-six?"

    "Yes. Let's begin!"

    ///////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Pkmn Trainer Rich ---vs.--- Museum Curator Michael
    ///////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    [Michael walks forward, stops, spins around, and poses with a Poké Ball in his hand. He then sends out an Ampharos and a Masquerain]

    "Let's see.....I can't use Tyranitar, so......Blaziken, Salamence, let's go! Salamence, kick it off with a Fire Blast!"

    Rich's Salamence blasted a large fireball at Masquerain. The bug Pokémon backflipped over and dodged, making the attack a complete bust.

    "Ampharos, you know what to do. Ice Punch!"

    Ampharos jumped in front of Masquerain, focused as its fists became surrounded by icy cold air, then jumped forth and delivered a chilling blow to Salamence. This attack was super-effective several times over, causing very high damage to the dragon.

    "Masquerain, follow up with Aerial Ace on that Blaziken!"

    Masquerain quickly flew out of Ampharos's shadow and dive-bombed Blaziken. It was another super-effective hit.

    "Gahhhhh.....I've got to get it together.......Blaziken, Earthquake!"

    Blaziken lept into the air and then stomped down with incredible force to create a shock wave in the floor. Salamence and Masquerain flew over it, but Ampharos got hit hard and was knocked out.

    "Well done, Rich. Return, Ampharos! Go, Zaprong!"

    Michael sent out a creature with black streaks across its yellow body and two antennas on its head. It was his Electabuzz, nicknamed Zaprong.

    "Salamence! Try a Flamethrower this time!"

    Salamence blew a steady stream of fire at Masquerain, this time hitting it but only clipping its wing. The Bug and Flying type did take a considerable amount of damage still.

    "Zaprong, use Ice Punch!"

    Zaprong jumped forward and smashed its icy fist into Salamence's body. The dragon could take no more and fainted.

    "Salamence.......return. Go, Ludicolo!"

    "Masquerain, finish off that Blaziken with another Aerial Ace!"

    Masquerain again dive-bombed Blaziken, taking it down this time.

    "Blaziken! Oh.......return.......go, Alakazam! Use Thunderpunch!"

    Alakazam's fists crackled with electricity, then it vanished and reappeared right in front of Masquerain. Masquerain had no chance to defend, and Alakazam knocked it out with the electrical punch.

    "Hmmm! This is quite a fun match! Masquerain, return. Go, Flareon! Use Thunderbolt, Zaprong!"

    Zaprong slammed its fists into the ground to build power, then it loosed a multitude of lightning bolts from its body to shock Ludicolo. Ludicolo took damage and became paralyzed.

    "Ludicolo, try a Surf!"

    Ludicolo struggled, but managed to create a wave of water and crash it down onto Michael's team. Zaprong didn't seem very fazed by the attack, but Flareon took quite a bit of damage.

    "Alakazam, Psychic!"

    Alakazam began to lift Flareon off the ground with its psychic powers but was cut off when Flareon managed to put up a Protect.

    "Zaprong, Thunderbolt again!"

    Zaprong once again shocked Ludicolo, leaving it all but fainted.

    "Flareon, Shadow Ball!"

    Flareon formed a ball of darkness near its head then fired it at Alakazam, reducing it to the same weak state as Ludicolo.

    "SURF!!!"

    It was difficult, but Ludicolo did manage to summon enough strength to crash another wave onto Flareon and Zaprong. Flareon fainted, but Zaprong held firm.

    "Flareon, return! Very well, Rich. I won't hold back any more if you want to play it that way. Go, Salamence!"

    "Alakazam......I know what you want to do, but use Psychic on Zaprong to take it down!"

    Alakazam's eyes glowed blue, then a blue aura surrounded Zaprong. Alakazam telekinetically lifted it into the air and smashed it down, defeating the Electric type.

    "Return, Zaprong. Come on, let's win this......go, Dragonite! Salamence, use Earthquake!"

    Michael's Salamence flapped its wings to gain altitude, then smashed down to the ground to make a shock wave. Dragonite wasn't affected but both Ludicolo and Alakazam were knocked out.

    "Yes! If I see correctly, you're down to one!"

    "I think you're right.....return, Ludicolo, Alakazam....go, Milotic!"

    "Dragonite, Hyper Beam!"

    Dragonite focused, then blasted a huge beam of energy at Milotic. This attack did very high damage.

    "Finish it all off, Salamence! Double-Edge!"

    Salamence flew high into the air, angled itself, and dive-bombed Milotic with incredible strength. Milotic fainted and Salamence took some backlash damage---but Rich had no Pokémon left.

    "All right! That's a victory for me!"

    //////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "I....I never even stood a chance against you, Michael! How do you expect me to win at the Colosseum or defeat Enigma Shadow?"

    "I'm much stronger than almost all the trainers in Orre. The only one who's officially ranked above me is Wes. I really think you'll have no trouble winning there."

    "That was a great battle, both of you.......come on, Rich, we should get over to the Colosseum."

    "Good idea, Anabel. Michael, do wish me luck in the challenge."

    Michael nodded and they said their goodbyes, then Rich and Anabel went down the elevators and left the museum. They crossed the bridge over the wide valley seperating the Colosseum from the rest of Pyrite and entered the arena's crumbling glass dome structure. A woman stood at the front gate to the main battlefield.

    "Welcome to Pyrite Colosseum! Are you here to take part in a knockout challenge?"

    "Yes, I am. Here's my pass."

    Rich showed the pass to the attendant, who scanned it.

    "That's it, you're in. Since this is your first challenge on the Orre Colosseum Challenge circuit, I'll explain the rules. Here at the Pyrite Colosseum, each trainer in the challenge enters three Pokémon. Before a battle, you will be shown your upcoming opponent's team and based on that information, you will choose two of your three Pokémon to battle. The tournament is single-elimination, and after four rounds the last trainer standing wins and recieves the Pyrite Emblem. Have you any questions?"

    "No."

    "Then please, give me your selection of Pokémon."

    "I'll enter Alakazam, Salamence, and Milotic."

    "Very well......please, come through here, Mr. Mistbloom." the attendant guided Rich through the front gate, then turned to Anabel. "I guess you're with him, but you aren't entered so I can't let you in this way. You'll have to watch from the stands, I'm afraid."

    "That's fine. Good luck, Rich."

    Anabel blew Rich a kiss, then she left to find a space in the stands. The guide, meanwhile, took Rich through the main gate and into a small waiting room.

    "Mr. Mistbloom, here is your first opponent's team."

    [==================]
    ------Mathus
    --Shedinja
    --Metang
    --Ninetales
    [==================]

    "So I pick two of my three Pokémon?"

    "Yes."

    "I'll choose........Salamence and Milotic."

    "Very well. Right through here, please.

    The attendant guided Rich to and through another gate, leading to the arena......

    ------------------------------------------------------------------

    The main arena of Pyrite Colosseum was in a state of disrepair, mimicking the rest of the town. Many glass panels on its dome were cracked, once gorgeous banners torn and held limply, and a set of spotlights half-falling attached to the roof. Duking sat in a booth off to the side with a microphone on the table in front of him.

    "Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the knockout challenge at Pyrite Colosseum! Our first match is between Rich from Phenac City and Mathus, a local Pyrite trainer!"

    Rich and Mathus entered the arena from opposite sides. As he reached his mark, Rich examined his opponent---a very large, muscular man whose shirt was much too small for him and only covered his shoulders.

    "Wahahah! I'll crush you as my first step towards winning the prize, wee cowboy!"

    /////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Pkmn Trainer Rich ---vs.--- Bodybuilder Mathus
    /////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    [Mathus throws two Poké Balls, sending out his Metang and Shedinja]

    "Milotic and Salamence, get out there and win one for Rich! Salamence! Kick this off with a bang! Flamethrower!"

    Salamence blew a stream of fire at Shedinja. The moment the flames hit, Shedinja fainted.

    "Shedinja, no!"

    "Milotic, Hydro Pump!"

    Milotic blasted Metang with a jet of water, nearly knocking it out.

    "Pyrite's trainers stand no chance...." Rich thought. "If I run into Chobin he'd better put up a good fight....."

    "Metang, Thunderpunch!"

    An orb of electricity formed around Metang's claw, then it hit Milotic with a powerful punch. Rich didn't seem concerned, however.

    "Salamence, finish it. Flamethrower!"

    Salamence let loose with another Flamethrower, defeating Metang and sealing Rich's victory.

    "Oh no! My dreams of being Pyrite's champ are done!"

    ///////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "The winner is Rich!" Duking called as the crowd cheered. "Congratulations!"

    Rich took a bow, then he was led back into the waiting room by the attendant....

    ----------------------------------------------------------

    A while later, the attendant returned.

    "Mr. Mistbloom, we have prepared your next match. Are you ready?"

    "Yes, as soon as I see what I'm up against."

    "Of course. Here is your next opponent's lineup."

    [==================]
    ------Teril
    --Porygon
    --Zangoose
    --Munchlax
    [==================]

    "Another weak opponent......I should have absolutely no trouble doing this....."

    "Mr. Mistbloom? Your selections?"

    "Oh! I'm sorry. I choose Salamence and Alakazam."

    "Very well. Enter through the main gate like before."

    The attendant led Rich to and through the main gate to the arena.

    -------------------------------------------------------

    "It's time for the quarterfinals, ladies and gentlemen! Now entering the arena are the first two trainers, Rich from Phenac City and Teril from Sorbera Island!"

    As he entered, Rich sized up his new opponent. She had long blonde hair tucked under a bandana and wore a shirt that was a bit too short for her and gray pants.

    "Oh, hello! I've heard of you. I hope you'll give me a great battle!"

    //////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Pkmn Trainer Rich ---vs.--- Chaser Teril
    //////////////////////////////////////////////////

    [Teril throws two Poké Balls, sending out Zangoose and Munchlax]

    "So it's Zangoose and Munchlax. Go, Salamence and Alakazam! Alakazam! Kick us off with a Psychic!"

    Alakazam focused, then an eerie blue glow came from its eyes. The blue glow then enveloped Zangoose and lifted it into the air before slamming it down.

    "Good attack, but I won't lose that easily! Zangoose, Shadow Ball!"

    Rich jumped back, surprised and knowing all too well what was about to happen. Zangoose held its claws a few inches apart and a ball of dark energy formed between them, then it hurled the ball into Alakazam. This attack, super-effective on the Psychic type, made Alakazam faint instantly. Rich recalled it to its Poké Ball and stared at Teril, his eyes slightly obscured by his cowboy hat.

    "Very well, so you're a better challenge than I expected." Rich looked back up again, his face no longer obscured. "Salamence! Dragon Claw!"

    Salamence breathed green flames on its claws, then it rushed forth and slashed Zangoose. Already weakened from Alakazam's Psychic attack, Zangoose fainted.

    "Hahah! I must say I am enjoying myself immensely! Return, Zangoose! Munchlax, Ice Punch!"

    Munchlax's fist was surrounded by frost, then it delivered an icy punch to Salamence's face with surprising agility. Salamence roared in pain, but somehow managed to stay up.

    "I'm counting on you, Salamence! Give me a win with Brick Break!"

    Salamence flew into the air, then plummeted toward Munchlax with claws bared. It smashed the small Normal-type, instantly KO'ing it.

    "Hahahaha! Ahahaha! What a match!"

    ////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "Rich wins this battle! Congratulations!"

    Once again Rich took a bow before being led back to the waiting room.

    ----------------------------------------------------------------

    Rich hadn't been waiting long before the attendant returned.

    "Your next match has been prepared, Mr. Mistbloom. Here is your opponent's lineup."

    [==================]
    ------Clarent
    --Torkoal
    --Seviper
    --Onix
    [==================]

    "Hmmmm........his name's Clarent? I do believe I've met this guy before........"

    "Mr. Mistbloom, is there something wrong?"

    "Oh, nothing. I'll battle with Alakazam and Milotic."

    "Thank you. Right this way."

    Once again Rich was led into the arena.....

    ----------------------------------------------

    "And now, ladies and gentlemen, the first of our semifinal matches! Please welcome the first competitor, Rich from Phenac City!"

    Rich entered the arena, and the crowd cheered. He spotted Anabel in the stands up above and blew her a kiss.

    "Facing Rich is a mystery trainer we have absolutely no information on. But will he prove to be as powerful as he is mysterious? Entering now is Clarent!"

    Rich recoiled in surprise when he saw his opponent enter. It was a male Shadow Peon----the same one who had been attacking Rui.

    "Well, I feel pity for you. I'm going to win this tourname----WAHH!!! It's you, Rich!! One peep out of any of you and this whole dump goes up!" Clarent screamed as he pointed at the crowd.

    "Damn it, what do you want?"

    "I want a match with you, Rich! Screw the rules of this Colosseum! We'll use all the Pokémon we've got--three each--and I will crush you!"

    "Bring it on!"

    ////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Pkmn Trainer Rich ---vs.--- Shadow Peon Clarent
    ////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "I'm going to avenge my earlier loss! Go, Onix and Seviper!"

    "Since you're using three, I can use three too. Don't forget that. Go, Alakazam and Milotic! Alakazam, use Psychic!"

    Alakazam began to attack Seviper with psychic power, a blue aura glowing in both Alakazam's eyes and around its target.

    "Endure that!"

    Just as Alakazam slammed Seviper down, the snake Pokémon tensed up its body and survived the attack.

    "Very good. Now, Seviper, strike with Sludge Bomb!"

    Seviper motioned as if it was taking a deep breath, then it spit up a ball of putrid sludge all over Alakazam. This attack injured Rich's Pokémon greatly.

    "Milotic, Hydro Pump!"

    Milotic blasted a powerful jet of water at Onix, but missed by a small distance.

    "Very good, very, very good. Onix, Rock Slide!"

    Clarent's Onix slammed its head into the ground, knocking several heavy boulders into the air. These rocks slammed both of Rich's Pokémon, knocking out Alakazam and doing light damage to Milotic.

    "Grrrrrrr....that's fine....that's just fine. Alakazam, return! Go, Salamence! Use Dragon Claw!"

    Salamence breathed green flames on its claws, then flew forward at high speed and slashed Seviper in an uppercut motion.

    "Seviper, don't put up with that! Poison Tail!"

    Seviper's tail began to glow with a purple light, then it rushed at Salamence. At the last moment it spun around and slashed Salamence with its tail.

    "Milotic, no more of this. Surf!"

    Milotic formed a gigantic wave of water, even bigger than the ones it usually did, and crashed it down on Clarent's team. Onix fainted because it was very weak to the water attack, Seviper because it was already weakened.

    "Onix, Seviper! NO! I've nothing left but you, Torkoal.....don't let me down!"

    Clarent sent out his Shadow Torkoal, the one Rich had encountered earlier.

    "Torkoal! Shadow Wave!"

    Torkoal loosed a wave of shadow energy from its shell, slightly damaging Milotic and Salamence.

    "Salamence, Dragon Claw!"

    Still in the air, Salamence looped over and came back down, slashing Torkoal powerfully.

    "Dragonbreath!"

    Milotic followed up quickly by blowing a cloud of pungent breath on Torkoal, damaging it some more and paralyzing it.

    "Torkoal, Shadow Wave again!"

    Torkoal sent out another wave of shadow energy, again doing only slight damage to its opponents.

    "Snag Ball, go!"

    Rich threw a Snag Ball at the Torkoal. It was scooped up, then the ball fell to the floor and started rocking........




    .......once...........





    ...........twice..........




    ....three times, then it pinged.

    "Arggggh!!!!! Not again!"

    ////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "Ack......I guess it can't be helped. I'll leave for now, but next time we meet, I'll be at the top of my game. Farewell!"

    Clarent turned and ran away, out of the Colosseum. The crowd stood and cheered for Rich.

    "Rich wins and goes on to the finals!"

    ---------------------------------------------------------------

    A little while later, the attendant returned to the waiting room.

    "Mr. Mistbloom, we apologize for the earlier inconvenience. Your final match is ready."

    "Thank you, don't worry about it. May I see the lineup?"

    "Of course."

    [==================]
    ------Chobin
    --Dragonair
    --Gyarados
    --Sunflora
    [==================]

    "Finally, a challenge. I will go with Alakazam and Salamence."

    "Very well. Right through here, and good luck, Mr. Mistbloom."

    ----------------------------------------------------------------

    "Ladies and gentlemen, it is now time for the finals of Pyrite Colosseum's knockout challenge! Now entering the arena is the challenger, Rich from Phenac City!"

    Rich entered from his side of the arena and blew another kiss to Anabel.

    "Facing Rich is a trainer all the way from Olivine Town in Johto, who now lives right here in Pyrite! Now entering the arena.......Chobin!"

    Chobin entered from opposite Rich, driving his Robo Groudon---a metal monster painted red and gray with yellow lights for eyes.

    "Chobin attack!!! Gawrrrroaarrrrrrr!!!!!!"

    //////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Pkmn Trainer Rich ---vs.--- Robo Groudon Chobin
    //////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    [Chobin moves Robo Groudon forward several steps, stops it, and makes it lean forward and 'roar.' He then makes its right arm spin around and throw two Poké Balls, sending out Dragonair and Gyarados]

    "Let's have a great battle, Chobin! Alakazam and Salamence, go! Alakazam, Ice Punch!"

    Alakazam rushed forward with an icy aura surrounding its fist. Just before it made contact with Dragonair, Chobin's Dragon type put up a Protect.

    "Hohoho! Chobin laughs! Gyarados, Chobin wants an Ice Beam!"

    Gyarados took a deep breath, filling the Colosseum with a noise not unlike a large vacuum, then fired a beam of ice at Salamence. Salamence did manage to use Endure and survive the hit, but it became frozen solid.

    "Salamence! NO!"

    "Chobin is very amused! Dragonair, Chobin commands a Dragon Rage to finish off that Salamence!"

    Chobin's Dragonair blew a ball of green fire across the arena at Salamence's frozen form, making it faint.

    "Noooo........Salamence....return....."

    "Chobin thinks Rich's odds are not good. Chobin asks if he wants to forfeit."

    Rich looked up and closed his eyes, actually considering Chobin's offer. But when he opened them, he saw Anabel, and became reinvigorated.

    "No, I don't think you should count your victory just yet. Alakazam! Give that Gyarados a taste of true power---Thunderpunch! Give it all you've got!"

    Alakazam's fists became two large glowing spheres of voltage, and then it levitated and rushed Gyarados. The punches had incredible force behind them, and therefore managed to fell the powerful Gyarados in one hit. The crowd went dead quiet, shocked at this.

    "What?!! Chobin is shocked! Chobin puts Gyarados away, then. Chobin orders Dragonair forth to end this with Outrage!!!"

    Dragonair screeched loudly as it began glowing with a red aura, then it rushed headfirst towards Alakazam.

    "Counter it with an Ice Punch!"

    As Dragonair rapidly approached, Alakazam's fist again became a sphere of ice. It swung, hitting Dragonair's head dead-on. The combined power of the two attacks caused an explosion, and when the smoke cleared both Alakazam and Dragonair had been knocked back.

    "Chobin has fury!! Chobin commands Dragonair to end the battle NOW!"

    Dragonair screeched again, charging up an even more powerful Outrage. The red aura now coated it.

    "Alakazam, one more Ice Punch should do it!"

    Alakazam, with its fist icy again, rushed towards Dragonair, who was coming the opposite way with its Outrage-fueled red aura. They met halfway and a struggle ensued with both trying to overwhelm their opponent. Finally, Alakazam broke through the red aura and delivered an incredible direct hit to Dragonair, sending it skidding across the arena and crashing into Robo Groudon. It had fainted the moment Alakazam hit.

    "Chobin lost! Chobin lost! Chobin lost!"

    /////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    The crowd went wild as Chobin recalled Dragonair angrily and drove Robo Groudon out of the Colosseum. Rich took a bow proudly.

    "Congratulations! The winner of the match, and the champion.............Rich from Phenac City!!!"

    ---------------------------------------------------------

    Rich was guided out through the front gate, where Anabel stood waiting.

    "That was great, Rich! I knew you'd beat Chobin!"

    "I admit I got a little scared for a moment when he beat Salamence easily. Guess it was for nothing, though!"

    "That reminds me, right around the time Clarent appeared I started feeling this strange feeling in my stomach."

    "In your stomach?"

    "Yeah.....it was probably that bean burrito I ate while you were waiting for the second round to begin."

    "Hah! Probably right."

    Michael entered the Colosseum and walked up to Rich and Anabel.

    "Hey there, Rich. I heard that you won!"

    "I sure did. Chobin was my final opponent, and tough, but I beat him."

    "Congratulations, then. I have something to give you."

    Michael took out a golden disc with a shape of Pyrite Colosseum carved into it and gave it to Rich.

    "What is it?"

    "It's the emblem of Pyrite Colosseum. It signifies your victory here, and it is the first step on the road to the championship at Orre Colosseum."

    "Thanks! Where should we head next?"

    "While tracking Enigma Shadow I got in touch with Secc, the leader of ONBS. He's wanting to meet you and get you for a TV interview, so I'd recommend visiting him. The ONBS Skyscraper is north from here, on the desert's border with the forest region."

    "Sounds good to me. Thanks for all your help, Michael."

    "Think nothing of it, Anabel. I wish you luck."

    "Okay, then. Let's hit the road, Rich."

    Rich and Anabel left the Colosseum on their way to leaving Pyrite and heading for the ONBS Skyscraper.



    Rich now has the very first Colosseum Emblem in the Orre challenge circuit! But it was hard-earned, as Chobin wouldn't go down without a fight. Our heroes now head to the ONBS Skyscraper, where they'll find more information on Enigma Shadow. What else awaits them? Stay tuned!



    END of CHAPTER 2

  6. #6
    追放されたバカ Nando's Avatar
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    CHAPTER THREE: The Great Snattle Chase



    ONBS's skyscraper--one of Orre's most spectacular buildings, topped only by the grand Realgam Tower. Nestled perfectly in a serene corner of the Northwest Orre region on the border of the Orre Desert, the building stood as a grand symbol of freedom and truth.

    Rich and Anabel pulled up and onto the tiled front area of the skyscraper, then got off their scooter and went inside. A young girl, wearing a beautiful blue dress to complement her purple hair sat at a desk right inside. A large sign with the ONBS logo was behind her, and next to her stood a Breloom.

    "Welcome to the ONBS Skyscraper!" she greeted cheerfully. "How may I help you today?"

    Rich opened his mouth to speak, but before any words came out.......

    "Breloom! Breloom LOOOOOMMMM!!!!!!"

    Breloom suddenly jumped over the desk and onto Anabel--knocking her down-- then began cheerfully crying out its name while it danced on her. She tried to roll over and get up, but Breloom landed on her back and kept dancing----then it accidentally loosed a Stun Spore attack. The receptionist and Rich both jumped up in horror.

    "Breloom, no!"

    "ANABEL!!!"

    ---------------------------------------------------------------

    Some time later, in another room on the first floor, Anabel finally woke up. She was in a cot set up in a research room, and surrounding the bed were Rich, the receptionist girl, and her Breloom. The girl had a rather large medical kit filled with all kinds of medicines opened on a nearby table.

    "What......what happened?"

    "I'm so glad you're alright! This miserable Breloom attacked you with Stun Spore while it was dancing on your back. Knocked you clean out."

    "Please....." the receptionist begged, "please forgive my Breloom. Ever since it evolved from a Shroomish a year ago, it's been getting overly eager with guests all the time."

    Rich looked at Anabel, who sat up and nodded.

    "It's okay. You Stun Spored me but I forgive you, Breloom."

    "Breee......Brelooom....."

    The door of the room slid open, and a young man in a white and yellow shirt who was wearing goggles on his head walked in.

    "Megg, is she alright now?"

    "Yes, Secc, she just woke up. Seems like everything's resolved now."

    "Good. Please, Megg, take Breloom and allow us a moment."

    "Of course. Breloom, let's go."

    "Breloom bre breeeeeee!!!"

    Megg left the room, Breloom bounding after her. Secc took a seat as Rich sat down on the cot next to Anabel.

    "Rich and Anabel, Michael told me you'd be heading over here from Pyrite. Allow me to introduce myself. I'm Secc, the leader of ONBS."

    "Pleased to meet you."

    "You should do a report on how bad Pyrite bean burritos are. I ate one and haven't felt right ever since."

    "Hahah! You'd be surprised how many times I've heard that, actually. Let's get down to business. Reports have been swamping us about Shadow Pokémon attacks on people from all parts of Orre. Not only that, we've recently come into the possession of information that says Enigma Shadow is preparing a new 'ultimate Shadow Pokémon,' one said to have more fearsome powers than XD001 Shadow Lugia or XD-02 Shadow Mewtwo did. XD003."

    "XD003?!!" both Rich and Anabel screamed at once.

    "It seems to be so. We don't know exactly who it is, but we have recieved a letter from someone claiming to be the leader of Enigma Shadow. Here....." Secc took a crumpled piece of paper from his pocket. ".....I'll read it to you.

    Dear ONBS,
    I am honored to inform you that Enigma Shadow has returned and is in your precious Orre Region right now. We are developing two things that will help our plan---together they will be able to turn any Pokémon into a Shadow Pokémon! You can't seriously think you'll be able to stop us. My mentor Dr. Yung would be proud of me for the work I've done based on his original Mirage System. The day when all Orre and all the world bows to me and XD003 will soon be at hand!
    ~The Mastermind of Shadow Pokémon.

    .......Dr. Mitchell Yung. Do you know the story behind him?"

    Rich and Anabel shook their heads 'no.'

    "I see. Mitchell Yung was a promising young Pokémon researcher at the Pokémon Institute. He studied alongside Professor Samuel Oak of Kanto and Professor Krane---many of the most prominent scientists in Pokémon research studied with him. He was expelled from the institute, however, because his experiments into what he called 'Mirage Pokémon' were cruel to the poor creatures."

    "Cruel?"

    "What did he do?"

    "He was convinced he could find the data for rare Pokémon by draining the memories of other Pokémon---a very dangerous, unsafe, and abusive process. He eventually did succeed in creating a system that could generate Mirage Pokémon on his orders, but some brave heroes defeated him and his ultimate Mirage Pokémon with the help of a Mew that was produced from a malfunction in the Mirage System. Defeated and in shambles, Yung went into his burning lab and committed suicide by jumping into the flames. But I'm getting way ahead of myself. I invited you two here for a television interview. I think that if we show we're not afraid of Enigma Shadow and their crimes, it'll be a huge plus to the effort to topple them. What do you say?"

    "What do you think, Anabel? You decide."

    "Sure, let's do it."

    "Very good. Come with me to the makeup room so we can get you prepped and set to go on right away."

    All of them stood up, and Secc led Rich and Anabel out of the room and onto an elevator. They went up one floor, got off, and walked down the hall to another door. Secc opened it, and they went in.

    "I have a question, Secc."

    "Yes, Rich?"

    "What are all the other floors of the skyscraper for if the main studio, makeup and R&D are all on the first two floors?"

    "More R&D, and a few other studios. On the top floor my co-chair Nett and his partner Bitt work on the tech side of our operations. Please wait here, and I'll have attendants to you shortly."

    ---------------------------------------------------------------------

    A short while later, after Rich and Anabel had been powdered and had their hair fixed, Secc returned.

    "Ready to go?"

    Rich and Anabel jumped out of the chairs.

    "Of course!"

    "We're more than ready!"

    "Great to see! Come, the studio's down this way."

    Secc led Rich and Anabel further down the hall, stopping at a large metal door. "ONBS MAIN STUDIO FLOOR" was painted on it, and above it was a sign---currently turned off---that said "ON THE AIR." Secc took them in, where two men stood at large TV cameras and spotlights shone on the desk where the purple-haired, red-dressed newscaster sat. Secc sat Rich and Anabel to her right and stepped back behind the cameras.

    "Hello, there!" the newscaster greeted. "I'm Ancha, pleased to meet you."

    "The pleasure's ours."

    "Nice to meet you, Ms. Ancha."

    "Okay, guys!" Secc called out. "We're gonna go live in three....two......go!"

    The ONBS music played as Ancha turned to one of the cameras.

    "This is ONBS News, and today we bring you a special report. They've been chasing Enigma Shadow through Orre after trouncing them one year ago, and today we have them live in the studio. Welcome Rich and Anabel Mistbloom! Welcome to ONBS News, we're honored to have you."

    "We're honored to be here, Ancha."

    "Rich. What got you involved in the fight against Enigma Shadow?"

    "Well, five years ago I was the champion of the Battle Tower in Larousse City. During a battle the Wishmaker Tower bombing occured, and my parents and fiancee perished in the tragedy."

    "Wow! But I understand there's more to that than meets the eye?"

    "Yes, there is. My parents sadly were killed, but Maria's death was a fake. She returned and revealed herself as the leader of Enigma Shadow, and to stop their mad plan, I had to defeat her and her Shadow Mewtwo."

    "Whoa! What a twist that must have been. Anabel, let's have your take on this whole thing. How'd you meet Rich? When did you know you wanted to spend your life with him? And your take on the battle against Enigma Shadow?"

    "I'm the owner of the Larousse Battle Tower, Ancha. That's how I met Rich---he made a comeback one year ago and we met then. How I knew I wanted to spend my life with him? I guess......he really watched out for me and took care of me during our adventures to stop Enigma Shadow. At one point I realized he'd give his life for me, and that's when I knew I was madly in love with him. Fighting Enigma Shadow's been crazy---the battle promoter who worked for me was actually a Shadow Admin, as were many people I thought were once my friends."

    "Can you name names?"

    "Yes, they were many people I knew from the old Battle Frontier. Dome Ace Tucker---the promoter---was one. Then there was Pyramid King Brandon, Pike Queen Lucy, Factory Head Noland, and Palace Maven Spenser. All of them except my closest friend, Arena Captain Greta, who was captured by Enigma Shadow. They had planned to use us as birthing machines to produce a new race of humans that would only obey Queen Shadow's orders."

    "What a tale! And to think it's still playing out, now in our very own Orre Region. Rich, Anabel, thank you for your time. This concludes our ONBS News Special Report."

    The ONBS music played again as the lights came back up.

    "Cut!" Secc called out. "That was excellent work! Good job, Ancha, sharp as always. Rich, you and Anabel did a fine-----"

    Suddenly, Secc's P*DA began to ring.

    "Excuse me."

    Secc took out his P*DA, flipped it open, and read the new e-mail. The look on his face slowly became one of shock, which Rich and Anabel picked up on.

    "Something the matter?" Rich asked as Secc put the P*DA away.

    "There's trouble out at the Outskirt Stand cantina. An old friend of ours named Hordel says there's some Enigma Shadow thugs out there trying to pull off a heist. I hate to be imposing, but do you think you could go check this out for us? The Outskirt Stand is far out to the southeast. It's shaped like an old locomotive, so you can't miss it."

    "I'm sure we can handle whatever they throw at us. Rich, let's go."

    "Right. Secc, try and gather information on their movements and let me know what you discover. Here's my P*DA number."

    Rich gave Secc the P*DA number, then he and Anabel rushed out.

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Secc's description of the Outskirt Stand was spot-on. It indeed was a locomotive, hollowed out and rebuilt into a small shop and diner. Wooden spoked wheels, half buried in the sand, surrounded it along with scattered metal sheds. Out front was a single gas pump, and parked near the entrance was a hover truck.

    Rich and Anabel pulled up and got off their scooter, then examined the truck from a few feet away. Suddenly, two male Shadow Peons dashed out of the building, one carrying a large sack which he hefted onto the truck.

    "Whew! That was a heavy load, for sure."

    "The boss will be very pleased with us. He needs that Poké Ball technology as part of constructing his machine."

    "You think we'll get rewar----ACK!!!!" the peon had spotted Rich and Anabel, and when he screamed the other turned and saw them as well. "They've seen us!"

    "Oh, surely you are not afraid. We can combine our strengths in battle to crush them!"

    /////////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Pkmn Trainer Rich and Tower Maiden Anabel
    ---vs.---
    Shadow Peon Mort and Shadow Peon Tarkil
    /////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "Go, Gastly!" "Let's run this off quick and get to the boss! Go, Poliwhirl!"

    "Bah, this won't be hard. Go, Alakazam!" "Metagross, get out there and help!"

    Rich's Alakazam and Anabel's Metagross faced down their opponents, Mort's Gastly and Tarkil's Poliwhirl.

    "Alakazam!" Rich thrust his hand forward and pointed at Gastly. "Psychic, get us up quick!"

    Alakazam's eyes glowed blue, then a blue aura of a similar shade surrounded Gastly as the attack began to injure it.

    "Gastly, get in a Destiny Bond!"

    Just before it went down, Gastly cast a shadow at Alakazam. It then fainted, and when the shadow hit Alakazam, Rich's Pokémon fainted too.

    "Alakazam!! Bah, I should've expected a trap. Return....."

    "Well done, Gastly! Return! Go, Haunter!"

    Mort's second and last Pokémon was a Haunter, one that the Aura Reader identified as a Shadow Pokémon.

    "A Shadow Haunter? Tyranitar, you can do this!"

    "Metagross, Shadow Ball!"

    Metagross formed a ball of dark energy at its maw, then fired it.......at Haunter, knocking the Shadow Pokémon down and out. It fled the battle.

    "My.....my Haunter!!! So much for the success of this job!"

    "I'll get them. Poliwhirl, Surf!"

    Poliwhirl sent a large wave of water crashing down onto Rich and Anabel's team. Tyranitar took quite a bit of damage, but Metagross took very little.

    "Tyranitar, use Thunder!"

    Tyranitar gathered electrical energy into its body, then launched a flurry of bolts into the sky. These thunderbolts soon crashed down onto Poliwhirl and knocked it out.

    "I think we may have gotten ourselves in too deep! Return, Poliwhirl! Go, Sudowoodo!"

    Tarkil's second and last Pokémon was a Sudowoodo. Like Haunter, it was a Shadow Pokémon.

    "Metagross, Thunderpunch!"

    Metagross's claw became electrified, then it glided forward and hit Sudowoodo with a paralyzing blow.

    "Sudowoodo, Shadow Wave!"

    Sudowoodo spun around and fired a wave of shadow energy at its opponents, hitting both weakly.

    "Tyranitar, hit with Dragonbreath!"

    Tyranitar took a deep breath, then blew out a cloud of foul breath that damaged Sudowoodo a bit.

    "Metagross, Mega Punch should make it right!"

    Metagross's claw now glowed with a white shine, then it swung and hit Sudowoodo with a strong punch. Sudowoodo's Rock type blocked much of the impact, however.

    "Shadow Rush!"

    Sudowoodo gave off a shadowy aura as it rushed Metagross, but the attack did little.

    "Snag Ball, go!"

    Rich threw a Snag Ball at Sudowoodo. After absorbing its target, the ball fell to the ground and tilted.......


    ......once..........





    ........twice..........




    ....three times and pinged.

    "Awwwwww, no! And I thought we'd succeed too!"

    ///////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "Now what do we do, Tarkil?"

    "Calm down, Mort. We got what we needed---the boss needed us to heist those Poké Balls so he could get at the technology inside. Now we should just flee!"

    Mort and Tarkil jumped in their truck and drove off with the sack of stolen Poké Balls.

    "That was easy. Great battling, my Anabel."

    "You weren't bad yourself, Rich......."

    Rich and Anabel chuckled, then went into the locomotive. A large muscular man stood behind a counter, a thin man with black hair sitting on the stool opposite him. A TV was mounted on the wall between the counter and a jukebox, and a pink-haired cowboy sat at a table a short distance away.

    "Oh, are you the ones ONBS said they'd sent?" the man asked.

    "That's us, Rich and Anabel Mistbloom."

    "What happened here?"

    The black-haired man turned to Rich and Anabel.

    "I'm Hordel, the one who contacted ONBS, and this is my friend Dusty. He owns this place. You see, those two Shadow Peons came in with their Shadow Pokémon and threatened to destroy the building if Dusty didn't hand over his entire stock of Poké Balls."

    "Poké Balls?"

    "But why......?"

    "They didn't tell me," Dusty answered. "They did say something about a machine that can transform Pokémon, though."

    Outside, there was the sound of a motorcycle pulling up, then Sherles---the chief of police from Pyrite---entered.

    "Well, well, well, I see my old friends Rich and Anabel have come as well?"

    "Oh, hello there, chief! ONBS asked us to check it out, actually."

    "There was a Poké Ball heist here."

    "I'll get the details for my report. You kids just head back to ONBS and let them know it's under control, OK?"

    "Fair enough."

    Rich and Anabel left the locomotive and were about to leave when the pink-haired cowboy came out after them.

    "Hey! Hey! You're a trainer, little lady, aren't you?"

    "Hm, me? Of course. We both are."

    "You look like someone famous, but I can't remember who. I can tell you're no ordinary trainer, though. I want to challenge you to a battle."

    "Sure, I'd be glad to! Rich, would you ref for us?"

    "Of course."

    "Rich? Are you......Rich and Anabel, the trainers taking the fight to Enigma Shadow? Awesome! My name's Willie. I've seen you on TV before."

    "Secc was right, Anabel. That TV report did make us even more famous. Now! Are you both ready?"

    Anabel and Willie nodded.

    "The Pokémon battle between Anabel, the owner of Larousse City's Battle Tower, and Willie will now begin! It shall be a best of three match, first to win two rounds the winner! Begin!"

    ////////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Tower Maiden Anabel ---vs.--- Rider Willie
    ////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "We can do this, Alakazam! Go!"

    "Get going, Girafarig!"

    "Round one! Anabel's Alakazam versus Willie's Girafarig! Begin!"

    "Alakazam, Dynamicpunch!"

    Alakazam reared back, then its fist glowed like a fireball as it swung powerfully at Girafarig.

    "Girafarig! Dodge and use Stomp!"

    Girafarig managed to dodge the Dynamicpunch and stomped down on Alakazam for a strong hit.

    "Alakazam, you're in close! Go for an Ice Punch!"

    Alakazam delivered an icy uppercut to Girafarig's stomach, hitting it hard.

    "Crunch attack!"

    Girafarig spun around and using the jaw on its tail crunched Alakazam, stunning it.

    "Alakazam! NO!"

    "Finish it with Shadow Ball!"

    Girafarig launched the lump of dark power at Alakazam, hitting it directly and taking it down.

    "Alakazam is unable to battle! Round one goes to Willie and Girafarig!"

    Anabel and Willie recalled their Pokémon and prepared to send out their next choices.

    "We can make a comeback! Go, Espeon!"

    "Dodrio, it's all you now!"

    "Round two! Anabel's Espeon versus Willie's Dodrio! Begin!"

    "Dodrio, Drill Peck!!"

    Dodrio hit Espeon with a brutal, drilling beak attack for high damage.

    "Keep your chin up, Espeon. Psychic!"

    Blue waves of psychic energy came out of Espeon's eyes, then it used this power to lift Dodrio and slam it down to the ground.

    "Dodrio, Hyper Beam!"

    Dodrio's three heads looked up into the air, then the middle one aimed and fired a huge energy beam at Espeon.

    "Protect!"

    Espeon managed to form a shield of green light around itself, blocking the attack.

    "Grrrr......Dodrio, go in for a Drill Peck! Finish this off!"

    Dodrio's sights locked onto Espeon and it rushed forward. Anabel simply smiled.

    "It'll be just fine, Espeon. I wanted this. Espeon......ZAP CANNON!!!"

    Just before Dodrio hit, Espeon formed a huge ball of electricity and fired it at point-blank range. The attack did catastrophic damage and defeated Dodrio.

    "Good job, Espeon!" Anabel said happily as she pet her Pokémon.

    "Dodrio is unable to battle! Round two goes to Espeon!"

    Anabel and Willie recalled their Pokémon and prepared for the final round of their match.

    "Metagross! Finish this battle! Go!"

    "It's all you now, Linoone!"

    "Round three! Anabel's Metagross versus Willie's Linoone! Begin!"

    "Metagross! Start with a Meteor Mash!"

    Metagross lunged forth with its claws extended at Linoone, but Linoone got out of the way before the attack hit.

    "Mud-Slap!"

    Using its hind legs, Linoone kicked up some mud and hit Metagross with it. Metagross, hating mud, roared loudly.

    "Hyper Beam!"

    The iron cross on Metagross's head began to glow, then it fired a massive energy beam right at Linoone.

    "Endure that!"

    Linoone braced itself, so when the Hyper Beam hit, it managed not to faint.

    "Now, Flamethrower!"

    Linoone's next move was to blast a stream of fire at Metagross. Metagross took high damage, but it seemed able to weather the blow still.

    "Metagross! Don't worry, my friend, I won't let you down. Now is when we win! Brick Break!"

    Metagross opened its eyes, swung its claw back, then crashed it down on Linoone. Linoone fainted, and the battle was over.

    "Linoone is unable to battle! Round three goes to Metagross, and the victory goes to Anabel!"

    "Tch.....wiped out. I still need seasoning."

    ///////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "I knew it, Enigma Shadow's got their eye on you two for a reason. I'll wish you the best of luck!"

    "Thank you!"

    "Great match, Willie! Now, Rich, we should be getting back to ONBS....."

    Suddenly, Rich's P*DA rang. He took it out and opened the new e-mail.

    [===============================]
    Sender: Secc, ONBS
    Subject: Help!

    Rich! Anabel! There's bad trouble!

    We found some information that Enigma
    Shadow's plans somehow involve Phenac
    City. Unfortunately, they know we have
    this info, and a whole troop of their
    soldiers has come to wipe it from our
    database! There's five or six of them,
    in all different colors!

    Please, come back to the
    Skyscraper and help us!
    [===============================]

    "What?!! We have no time to lose, Anabel!"

    "Right. We've got to get back there at once!"

    Rich and Anabel jumped onto their scooter and sped off back towards the ONBS Skyscraper.

    --------------------------------------------------------------------

    Rich and Anabel had sped back to the ONBS Skyscraper and rushed inside only to find it seemingly abandoned. They wandered up four floors before reaching a single worker. He was lying on the floor and appeared to have been beaten up.

    "Whoa! Anabel, look at this!"

    Anabel knelt down and helped the man up.

    "What happened to you?"

    "R-Rich.....Anabel.......they....they took Megg, Ancha and Secc hostage and brought them up to Nett's office on the top floor......."

    Rich and Anabel looked at each other, then nodded.

    "Listen. I want you to get out of this building with haste and go to Pyrite Town. File a report with Chief Sherles at once."

    "But what will happen here?"

    "Anabel and I will get rid of the goons. Just alert the police about this!"

    "Thank you! Good luck!"

    The man ran off, then Rich and Anabel set out again to reach the top floor of the Skyscraper. Soon they indeed had arrived on the seventh and top floor, and Nett's office.

    Inside they found a young man in a business suit, another young man with tan skin and wearing a white-and-yellow shirt, Ancha, Secc, Megg and her Breloom---all being held hostage by six Shadow Peons in different colors. From left to right they were red, blue, green, yellow, purple and brown.

    "Rich, Anabel! Help us!" Secc screamed.

    "What's going on?!!"

    "Who are you six?"

    "Ahahahah!" the red peon laughed. "We are sextuplets! We are! We are! We strike terror throughout the land! For we are the Hexagon Brothers! Count off!"

    "One!"

    "Two!"

    "Three!"

    "Four!"

    "Five!"

    There was an awkward silence.

    "Five?" the yellow peon wondered. "Is there one of us missing again?"

    "That's stupid, Yellosix!" the brown peon retorted. "Let me try. Count off!"

    "One!"

    "Two!"

    "Three!"

    "Four!"

    "Five!"

    "Six!"

    "Seven!"

    "Eight!"

    "Nine!"

    "Ten!"

    "Eleven!"

    "Twelve......huh?!?! Twelve? Now there are too many of us! Beware, there may be spies in our group, brothers!"

    "I wouldn't worry about it too much, Browsix," the blue peon answered. "What we need to do now is get rid of these meddlers!"

    "Right on, brother!" the red peon replied. "Master Snattle will be most pleased with us if we defeat them. Now! Let us undertake our mission with pride and dignity! To battle!"

    The red and blue peons rushed forward to challenge Rich and Anabel.

    ///////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Pkmn Trainer Rich and Tower Maiden Anabel
    ---vs.---
    Shadow Peon Resix and Shadow Peon Blusix
    ///////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "We will win! Go, Camerupt!" "I'm with you, brother! Go, Seaking!"

    "Don't count on it. Go, Ludicolo!" "You go help Rich, Alakazam!"

    Rich's Ludicolo and Anabel's Alakazam faced Resix's Camerupt and Blusix's Seaking.

    "Alakazam! Use Thunderpunch!"

    Alakazam's fist crackled with electricity, then it rushed towards Seaking with the electrified fist at the ready.

    "Counter with Horn Attack!"

    Seaking met Alakazam's attack by thrusting forth its sharp horn. Alakazam hit the horn and was injured, while Seaking took a strong hit as well.

    "Ludicolo, Hydro Pump!"

    Ludicolo backflipped, landed, and blasted Camerupt with a powerful jet of water. Camerupt instantly fainted.

    "Gah, Camerupt! It won't do at all! Return! Go, Magmar!"

    Resix's second and last Pokémon was a Magmar that the Aura Reader tagged as a Shadow Pokémon.

    "Magmar, Shadow Rave!"

    Using its dark aura, Magmar sent waves of shadow energy spikes through the ground to strike Alakazam and Ludicolo.

    "Alakazam, another Thunderpunch!"

    Alakazam rushed forward and delivered another electrical blow to Seaking. This one it couldn't counter, and Seaking fainted.

    "Seaking.........return. Brats, you'll pay now! Go, Buoysel!"

    Blusix sent out his last Pokémon, an orange and tan weasel-like creature with blue fins on its arms and a tail split like an Espeon's. The Buoysel had the black aura of a Shadow Pokémon as the Aura Reader showed.

    "Buoysel! Shadow Sky!"

    Buoysel absorbed shadow energy into its body, then sent a burst of black light into the air. When it hit the ceiling it spread over the room like a cloud.

    "Ludicolo, hit Magmar with Seismic Toss!"

    Ludicolo grabbed Magmar, backflipped while gripping it three times, then jumped and slammed its opponent into the floor. As soon as Ludicolo let go, bursts of light rained down from the shadowy aura to strike it and Alakazam.

    "Alakazam, Psychic!"

    Alakazam's eyes glowed blue as it used psychic power to lift Magmar and slam it down.

    "That ought to do. Snag Ball, go!"

    Rich threw a Snag Ball at Magmar. The ball absorbed its target, fell to the ground, and rocked once.........




    ..........twice..........




    .....and three times.

    "What? That shouldn't be-----!'

    "Grrrrrr.....Buoysel, Shadow Rush!"

    Buoysel surrounded itself with the shadow aura and rushed at Ludicolo, doing a decent amount of damage. More bursts rained down and struck all but Buoysel.

    "Alakazam, Thunder Wave!"

    Alakazam emitted weak pulses of electricity from its body and jolted Buoysel, paralyzing it.

    "Ludicolo, follow it up with Brick Break!"

    Ludicolo jumped forward at Buoysel and slammed it with both hands for a moderately strong hit.

    "Buoysel, don't give in! Use Shadow Rush!"

    Buoysel failed to attack, however. Its paralysis held it back. Once again bursts of light rained from the shadowy aura and struck Ludicolo and Alakazam.

    "Alakazam, use Mega Punch to finish this up!"

    Alakazam rushed forward, stopped right in front of Buoysel, and swung down on it with a powerful punch.

    "Snag Ball, go!"

    Rich's second Snag Ball went at Buoysel, which was absorbed. The ball tilted on the ground once.........



    .........twice..............




    ...........then three times and pinged.

    "Gah! You brats!"

    /////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "Don't you have better things to do? Go play somewhere else."

    "When I get serious the consequences could be really bad. That's why I went easy on you!"

    Resix and Blusix ran off, leaving their troop behind.

    "Gahhh!!!" Yellosix, the yellow brother, snarled. "We can't take them on face-to-face! Brothers, release your Shadow Pokémon and attack!"

    Yellosix sent out his Shadow Lanturn. Greesix, the green brother, followed with his Shadow Tangela. Next was the purple brother, Purpsix's Shadow Arbok. Last out was brown brother Browsix's Shadow Perap, a colorful parrot-like creature. With all four of their Shadow Pokémon out, the brothers lined up.

    "ATTACK!!!!" they all screamed at once.

    Lanturn, Tangela, Arbok, and Perap all gave off the shadowy aura and went straight at Rich and Anabel with Shadow Rush. Suddenly, a Thunderbolt and a Flamethrower from seemingly nowhere hit all four back.

    "Hey, there! The Hexagon Brothers giving you trouble now?"

    Rich and Anabel turned around to see Michael with Zaprong the Electabuzz and Sherles with his Growlithe at the door.

    "Michael? Sherles?"

    "How did you know.......?"

    "Ah, you needn't worry. Of course we found out about the trouble these thugs were making, so we had to come and help out."

    "Hey, Purpsix!"

    "Whuzzat, Greesix?"

    "Ain't that the punk we met at the old desert lab?"

    "Oh yeah!" Browsix exclaimed. "That brat who took my Baltoy from me, right? Anyway, forget it! Perap, Shadow Rush!"

    Perap rushed at Sherles this time.

    "Trust me, we'll take care of this. Growlithe, Fire Blast!"

    "Zaprong, use Thunderbolt!"

    Growlithe blasted Perap back with a large fireball, then Zaprong hit all four Pokémon with a massive Thunderbolt. All but Lanturn were weakened greatly.

    "Snag Ball, go! And go! And go!"

    Rich threw three Snag Balls, one right after the other. One absorbed Tangela and sealed it away easily, the second took Arbok--but not as easily. Perap fell quickly to the third.

    "Lanturn, avenge your brothers! Shadow Flood!"

    Lanturn absorbed shadow energy into its body and then blasted a massive stream of dark water at its opponents. It hit----or it seemed to, as a combined Psychic from Rich and Anabel's Alakazam's pushed the stream back. The two psychic Pokémon then proceeded to cross the spoons they held and shoot Psybeams at Lanturn, knocking it down.

    "Good work, Alakazam!"

    "You too. Now, Snag Ball....go!"

    Rich threw yet another Snag Ball, and this one captured Lanturn with relative ease.

    "Oh, Mama, I've lost!"

    "I feel crushing defeat sixfold!"

    "Beaten by some kid?!!"

    "Damn it! We can't win! Pull out, brothers!"

    All four of the remaining Hexagon Brothers fled.

    "Well, well, well. You kids sure are the real deal."

    "Thanks. But how did you know to come here?"

    "I'll tell you," Michael responded. "I also recieved the e-mail you did about the attack. As soon as I did I wrote my own e-mail to Chief Sherles to alert him to the situation. He was taking a police report at the Outskirt Stand but was able to run off to meet me here."

    "I understand," Anabel said, nodding.

    The man in the suit stepped forward.

    "Thank you for helping us. My name is Nett, and I'm the technological mastermind behind ONBS. This........" Nett gestured to the other young man, the one in the white-and-yellow shirt---".....is my partner, Bitt. He helps me with keeping ONBS's technology running."

    "Pleased to meet you," Bitt greeted.

    "Anyway, down to business. We discovered in data recovered from a Shadow Peon arrested at Pyrite Colosseum that Enigma Shadow is planning a crime somehow involving Phenac City. What exactly, we don't know----"

    At that moment, a Venomoth flew into the room through an open window. It held a piece of mail.

    "Venoooooo moothhh venomoth!"

    "Hmmmmmm? What's this?"

    Nett took the mail from the Venomoth, which then flew back out and away. He opened it and read its contents aloud.

    "Dear Rich and Anabel Mistbloom,

    I did not expect to have to write this letter. I thought that the Hexagon Brothers would finish you but I was wrong.

    I know that ONBS has the data containing our Phenac City attack plan, too. We've already pulled it off---I am holding Phenac's Mayor, Trest, and the Pre Gym's Justy hostage in the Realgam Tower Colosseum. If you want to save them, come if you dare! I'll enjoy waiting!

    ~Love, Snattle."

    "Snattle? Anabel, didn't we meet someone named Snattle before?"

    "Halfmoon Cove! He was one of Parfrida's Elite Guards!"

    "Not only that," Secc added with concern in his voice. "Three years ago he held all of Phenac hostage as part of Cipher's XD001 plot. I dread to think what he intends to do with Mayor Trest and Justy."

    "Rich, Anabel, you're our only hope!" Megg shouted, nearly in tears from the ordeal. "You have to go to the Realgam Tower and free the Mayor and Justy."

    Rich and Anabel looked at each other, then nodded.

    "We'll do it," Rich answered. "Could you give us directions?"

    "Yes," Bitt replied. "Realgam Tower is sharply southeast of here. It's a colossal building so you should have no trouble finding it. Whatever you do, you must defeat Snattle to free his prisoners."

    "You can count on us!"

    "Let's hit the road, Rich. They need help."

    Rich and Anabel left the room and began off to Realgam Tower.

    -------------------------------------------------------------------

    The Realgam Tower was a majestic sight to behold. The main structure of the tower was a large dome on the ground with a tube elevator heading up. Halfway between the dome and the colosseum on top was a spherical structure, with two tube elevators leading up to the colosseum. The colosseum itself was not visible from the ground, as it was surrounded by tall structures of various heights. Down on the ground, a tube network connected the base of the tower to the plaza outside. Rich and Anabel arrived on their scooter, got off, and stepped to the center of the plaza to appraise the situation. The sun gleamed off the tiled floor of the plaza as well as the glass Sudowoodo sculptures in the center of the fountains on the left and right.

    "Hah, doesn't this remind you of home, Anabel?"

    "It sure does. In fact, if I recall correctly our Battle Tower was remodeled in the form of this tower a few years back."

    "I think so. We've got to get moving, though. Trest and Justy aren't exactly in the best of situations right now."

    "Right."

    Rich and Anabel advanced towards the entrance, but before they got there the door opened and someone stepped out. It was Malin, the trainer they had met at the HQ Lab.

    "Hmm? Well, imagine seeing you two here. Do you remember me? We met at Prof. Krane's lab."

    "Oh yeah.....you're that girl who was testing his Battle Sim System. Anabel, what's her name again?"

    "I think it was Malin......"

    "Yes, that is my name. Well done for guessing it, hahah. I take it you came here to battle?"

    "Not exactly. We heard one of Enigma Shadow's Admins is holding Phenac's Mayor and the leader of the Pre Gym hostage up in the Colosseum."

    "I think you've been fooled. I came here to battle and I was told the Colosseum's closed."

    "Oh really. Rich and I recieved a letter that said they were being held there, very clearly stated."

    "Oh, I don't know then. Go ahead in if you want, but I can't guarantee that you'll find it to your liking."

    Malin then calmly left. Rich and Anabel went into the dome, inside which was a small room with a sculpture of the main tower. Across was the door to the rail link to the next dome, which they promptly took. The next dome had three more doors, but the left and right hand ones were locked. The only open one---the middle---led to the main tower, so they took it.

    The inside of the tower's main structure was a brightly lit chamber. A stream of clear water flowed around the perimeter of the room, and two more Sudowoodo fountains flanked the door leading in. There was a desk in the middle of the chamber, behind it from left to right a door, an elevator and another door. Rich and Anabel walked up to the desk to speak with the woman behind it.

    "Excuse me?"

    "Oh, hello! Welcome to Realgam Tower! How may I help you?"

    "I'd like to register for a challenge in the Colosseum."

    "Oh, I'm sorry. The Colosseum is closed today. All the battles are being held at the Stadium in Phenac City."

    Anabel tore the travel booklet out of her pocket and flipped furiously to the Phenac City page.

    "Forgive me, but that's not true. It says right here: 'Phenac is home to a facility no longer used as a Pokémon Stadium. All battle tournaments once held there now take place at the Realgam Tower. Trainers are free to use the Stadium for their own battles, however.'"

    "I'm telling you, noone's allowed in the Colosseum!"

    The woman stood up and spun around, transforming into a Shadow Peon.

    "I'll keep you out at any cost!"

    ///////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Pkmn Trainer Rich ---vs.--- Shadow Peon Kathla
    ///////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "You're not getting into the Colosseum! Go, Raichu and Azumarill!"

    "I knew it, the Colosseum's hiding a secret! Blaziken, Tyranitar, help me find out what it is!"

    "Raichu, use Volt Tackle!"

    Raichu began emitting electricity from its body, then it charged furiously at Blaziken.

    "Protect!"

    Right before Volt Tackle hit, Blaziken surrounded itself in a shield of green light. Raichu simply hit the shield and bounced off.

    "Now, Tyranitar.....Earthquake!"

    Tyranitar jumped and slammed the ground to cause shock waves. Blaziken wasn't affected as its shield blocked the attack, but Azumarill took quite a hit and Raichu fainted.

    "R-Raichu! Dang it, return.......go, Volbeat!"

    Kathla replaced her Raichu with a Volbeat, one that was detected as a Shadow Pokémon.

    "Azumarill, Bubblebeam!"

    Azumarill took a deep breath, then exhaled a stream of bubbles at Tyranitar. The bubbles pelted its rocky hide and hit it with some force.

    "Blaziken, finish Azumarill with Mega Punch!"

    Blaziken rushed forward at Azumarill and hit it with an amazingly strong punch. Azumarill couldn't take it and fainted.

    "Azumarill............go, Illumise!"

    The last Pokémon employed by Kathla was a Shadow Illumise.

    "Volbeat, Shadow Rush!"

    Volbeat took a few steps back, surrounded itself with the shadow aura, and tackled Blaziken. It did quite a bit of damage.

    "Illumise, you follow that with Shadow Rave!"

    Illumise absorbed shadow energy, then sent spikes of it out to hit both of Rich's Pokémon.

    "Tyranitar, try Thunderbolt!"

    Tyranitar launched electrical bolts from its body at Volbeat, inflicting a bit of damage and paralyzing it.

    "Blaziken, work it down! Use Slash!"

    Blaziken rushed forward again and slashed Volbeat with its sharp claws.

    "Snag Ball, go!"

    Rich threw a Snag Ball at Volbeat. The ball absorbed its target, fell to the floor, and tilted........



    .......once............




    .........twice............




    .......three times, and then it pinged.

    "Ooooooohh, I'll make you pay now! Illumise, Shadow Panic!"

    Illumise cast a pair of shadowy clouds towards Rich's team. When the clouds hit their targets, they burst into shadowy stars and made both Pokémon become confused.

    "Gahhh....I don't want to........Tyranitar, Fire Blast!"

    Tyranitar slipped and hit itself in its confusion.

    ".........Blaziken! Use Blaze Kick followed by Fire Punch!"

    Unlike Tyranitar, Blaziken didn't hurt itself. It rushed Illumise and smashed it with a fiery kick, then finished it off with a fiery punch. Illumise fled the battle.

    "You still shouldn't go to the Colosseum!"

    ////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "I hope Master Snattle fixes you good!"

    Kathla ran off.

    "Rich, why did you knock out Illumise like that?"

    "I didn't want to take the chance of having any of my own Pokémon taken down right before facing Snattle. Illumise was trouble using Shadow Rave and Shadow Panic so I needed to get rid of it. I'm sure we'll see it again sometime."

    "I guess. Now, we must be getting to the Colosseum, no?"

    Rich and Anabel walked over to the elevator and pressed its button, making the glass door slide open. They got in and went up the glass tube to the spherical building halfway up, then got off. This chamber had the elevator from the first floor's tube in the middle, flanked by two grand staircases. At the top of the stairs were two more tube elevators. On the railing between them were gold sculptures of three legendary Pokémon: Raikou, Entei, and Suicune.

    The two heroes walked up the stairs and boarded the left-side elevator to the Colosseum. As it rose up through the glass tube connecting its destinations, Rich and Anabel got a bird's eye view of Orre. Suddenly, Anabel clutched her stomach.

    "Ugh......I..I....."

    "That bean burrito again?"

    "No.....being up this high....."

    "It should be alright. Once we make it to the Colosseum we'll be surrounded by those weird structures. You won't be able to see how high up you are."

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    The Colosseum was majestic, fitting for such an extravagant building. The arena was circular and painted to match a Poké Ball pattern---and two smaller Poké Ball patterns were on opposite sides, in their middles the tubes for the elevators. Giant hexagons ringed the arena---usually the audience sat in them, but they were empty at this moment.

    Near the middle of the arena stood several people. There was a male Shadow Peon, a second male peon with large muscles, and a female peon. They were led by a tall man dressed in all white with a white cape and white shoes. He also wore purple glasses and a strange blue-and-white hat to keep his hair in the unusual shape he had it in. This was Snattle, the second Shadow Admin.

    Finally there were two men tied with their backs to each other and guarded by a Mightyena. One was wearing a gray business suit, a blue tie, and square glasses. The other was blue-haired and clad in a white jacket with a Poké Ball on it. The former was Trest, Phenac City's Mayor; the latter Justy of the Pre Gym.

    The hatch on the left hand side of the arena opened, and the elevator carrying Rich and Anabel popped up. The door opened and he helped her out, then they spotted Snattle's gang and rushed towards them.

    "SNATTLE!!!"

    "Let the Mayor and Justy go!!"

    Snattle turned calmly to them.

    "Mufwofwofwo! Well, we meet again, Rich and Anabel. What happened to those other two dastardly children you used to hang around with?"

    "You mean Steven and Ashley?"

    "They stayed behind with my parents to help purify the Shadow Pokémon that we Snagged before."

    "Mufwofwo......yes, I do recall the events of one year ago. Back then I was one of Lady Parfrida's Elite Guards along with those fools Lovrina, Gorigan and Ardos. Then........then I battled YOU. All thanks to my loss to you, Rich, Enigma Shadow's new leader demoted me to Admin as soon as he took control of the organization. So you might say I have an axe to grind with you two, not only for that but for sending Lady Parfrida and Queen Shadow to prison."

    "They're going to stay there, and no matter how many times I defeat you it's going to stay that way."

    "That is where you're mistaken. My troops and I have been awaiting your arrival here in the Realgam Tower Colosseum. You will fight all four of us, one after the other. When we beat you, our new leader will surely give me my old job back along with the position of Orre's Governor....."

    "You're still wanting that position?!! Rich, show him how he'll never get it!"

    "Mufwofwo. I wouldn't be so confident if I were you, bratty girl. And say, you've sure gotten fat since I saw you last."

    "Fat?!!! FAT?!"

    "Anabel, don't listen to him--he's just trying to get to us!"

    "But I've only gained five pounds in the past year.....I keep track......"

    "Humph. I don't really care one way or the other, I'm just stating facts. I've had enough of this child's play. There's a seat as Orre's Governor with my name on it---and this shall serve as my inauguration party!" Snattle turned to his peons. "Egrog! You're up first!"

    The thin male peon stepped forward.
    "Yes, sir, Master Snattle! I will defeat him and help you regain your glory!"
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------

    //////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Pkmn Trainer Rich ---vs.--- Shadow Peon Egrog
    //////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    [Egrog throws two Poké Balls. They burst open and release a Farfetch'd and a Golem]

    "So it's Farfetch'd and Golem this time. Get out there, Alakazam and Milotic! Alakazam, Thunderpunch!"

    Alakazam rushed at Farfetch'd with its fists electrified, but only managed to strike a glancing blow.

    "Farfetch'd! Hit back with a Slash!"

    Egrog's Farfetch'd flew to in front of Milotic, and used its held stick to slash Rich's partner.

    "You're about to find out what happens when you do things like that......Milotic! ICE BEAM!"

    Milotic fired a beam of ice from point-blank range, hitting Farfetch'd square on. This attack did the high damage Thunderpunch should have, and Farfetch'd fainted.

    "Farfetch'd, return! Go, Swalot! Golem, Double-Edge!"

    Golem tucked in its limbs then rolled and smashed into Alakazam. It scored a critical hit and KO'd Alakazam easily.

    "Alakazam! Oh, I guess it couldn't be helped. Return. Go, Tyranitar! Milotic, wipe out Golem with a Hydro Pump!"

    Milotic took aim and fired a pressurized jet of water that hit Golem perfectly. The attack was superbly powerful, knocking out Golem.

    "Golem, return! Now all that's left is.......Miltank, go!"

    Egrog's fourth and final Pokémon was a Shadow Miltank.

    "Swalot! Use Bullet Seed now!"

    Swalot launched a flood of seeds from its mouth. The seeds barraged Milotic and struck it many times.

    "Is that your best? Tyranitar, use Mega Punch then Iron Tail!"

    Tyranitar rushed Swalot and slugged it powerfully, then whipped around and slammed its tail into the Poison type. Surprisingly, Swalot was able to endure the strikes.

    "Miltank, Shadow Hold!"

    Miltank launched a cloud that enveloped Rich's team, blocking him from recalling the two Pokémon.

    "Milotic, finish Swalot off with Surf!"

    Milotic created a huge wave of water and crashed it down on Egrog's team. Swalot indeed fainted, while Miltank only took slight damage.

    "Swalot, return! Miltank, try Shadow Rush!"

    Miltank surrounded itself with the dark aura and smashed into Tyranitar. However, Tyranitar only took a weak hit.

    "Tyranitar, Dragon Claw!"

    Tyranitar's claws began glowing with a green aura, then it slashed Miltank powerfully.

    "Milotic, weaken it with Dragonbreath!"

    Milotic blew a cloud of putrid-smelling breath at Miltank, damaging it a bit and paralyzing it.

    "Miltank, Shadow Rush!"

    Miltank couldn't attack however, due to the paralysis.

    "Tyranitar, one more is needed. Bite!"

    Tyranitar turned back to Miltank and bit it using its powerful jaws.

    "That's enough. Snag Ball, go!"

    Rich threw a Snag Ball at Miltank. After absorbing its target the ball fell to the ground and rocked once.........


    .....twice.........



    ....and three times, then it pinged.

    "Aw, no! I've let you down again, Master Snattle!"

    ///////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    Egrog ran off, and using the right-hand elevator he fled the Colosseum.

    "So you defeated Egrog," Snattle said, trying to be calm despite his obvious anger. "He was the weakest of my followers, so perhaps it isn't a surprise. Axel! You're next!"

    The muscular peon stepped forward.

    "Yes, sir! Master Snattle, I will crush him!"

    "Very well, I expect you to. Now get to it!"

    Axel turned to face Rich.

    "Master Snattle says I must destroy you! And I always do what Master Snattle says!"

    "Bring it on!"

    /////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Pkmn Trainer Rich ---vs.--- Shadow Peon Axel
    /////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    [Axel throws two Poké Balls, sending out his Shuckle and Hitmonchan. The Shuckle immediately sets off the Aura Reader---it is a Shadow Pokémon]

    "Ludicolo and Salamence, go! Salamence, Fire Blast!"

    Salamence launched a fireball from its maw at Shuckle. The attack was powerful, but Shuckle's defensive abilities stopped it from doing much.

    "Looks like I'll have to step it up a bit, then. Ludicolo, Surf attack!"

    Ludicolo crashed down a wave of water onto Axel's team. This attack broke through Shuckle's defenses more than Fire Blast, but still didn't do much. It didn't hurt Hitmonchan all that much, either.

    "Now it's our turn! Hitmonchan, use Ice Punch!"

    Hitmonchan's fist became icy, then it jumped and swung at Salamence. The attack made contact, but even though the ice should've hurt Salamence greatly, it did not.

    "What?! How did.......that was a direct hit!"

    "My Salamence just so happens to be trained very well for enduring weaker ice attacks such as that. You'll need something more than that to win."

    "I have to win! I will win! Shuckle, Shadow Down!"

    Shuckle sent out spore-like clouds of shadow energy that attached themselves to Rich's Pokémon, weakening their defenses greatly.

    "Salamence, show him what you're capable of! Aerial Ace!"

    Salamence flew up into the air, then dive-bombed Hitmonchan with incredible force. Hitmonchan took incredible damage and fainted.

    "Oh no, Hitmonchan! Grrr....return, then. Go, Hitmonlee!"

    "Use another Surf, Ludicolo!"

    Ludicolo attacked by sending another wave crashing down onto Axel's team. Once again, it did slight damage to both of his Pokémon.

    "Hitmonlee! Rock Slide!"

    Hitmonlee stretched its legs to become very tall, then slammed down with great force. This force kicked up several rocks, which hit Salamence powerfully and Ludicolo less so.

    "Shuckle, Shadow Storm!"

    Shuckle withdrew into its shell and spun around to create a tornado of shadow energy, striking both of Rich's Pokémon with some force.

    "Salamence, I think another Aerial Ace is in order."

    The dragon listened, turned, and dive-bombed Hitmonlee. Hitmonlee was all but defeated by the strike.

    "Ludicolo, enough of this! Use Surf and finish it up!"

    Once again Ludicolo sent a wave of water crashing onto Axel's team. Hitmonlee fainted and Shuckle came close to fainting as well.

    "Hitmonlee, return! I can't lose.....go, Hitmontop! Shuckle, use another Shadow Storm!"

    Shuckle repeated its earlier attack. This shadowy tornado hit Ludicolo forcefully and knocked it out, while Salamence took some damaged but held firm.

    "I don't think we've much more to worry about, Salamence. Return, Ludicolo. Blaziken, go! Salamence, another Aerial Ace!"

    Still in the air, Salamence looped back once again and struck Hitmontop.

    "Blaze Kick!"

    Blaziken's foot began to burn with scorching flames, then it lunged forward and smashed Hitmontop with a fiery kick.

    "Hitmontop, Triple Kick!"

    Hitmontop began spinning then kicked Blaziken three times, causing moderately high damage.

    "Shadow Down, Shuckle!"

    Shuckle cast some more spores of shadow energy at Rich's team, once again weakening their defensive ability greatly.

    "Salamence, use Aerial Ace to finish this up!"

    Once again, Salamence looped around and bashed Hitmontop. The Fighting Pokémon fainted from the hit.

    "H-Hit.....Hitmontop......return."

    "I bet you know what comes now. Snag Ball, go!"

    Rich threw a Snag Ball at Shuckle. The ball absorbed its target and tilted.....


    once.............




    twice..............





    a third time, then it pinged. Another successful Snag.

    "But I never fail Master Snattle's orders!"

    ///////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    Following Egrog's lead, Axel rushed to the right-hand elevator and escaped the Colosseum. Snattle gritted his teeth in anger.

    "Perhaps we underestimated you, but you will go no farther! Arlen, it's up to you now!"

    The female peon stepped forward and faced Rich.

    "We meet again. Do you recall the last time we met? It was on the forest trail connecting Gateon Port and the Pokémon HQ Lab. You knocked out my Vibrava that time."

    "Oh yeah! Anabel, remember her? This creep's one of the thugs who were attacking Rui."

    "Yeah, I remember that. They were the two we crushed so easily. I remember."

    "Things are going to be different this time. Prepare to lose!"

    //////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Pkmn Trainer Rich ---vs.--- Shadow Peon Arlen
    /////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    [Arlen throws two Poké Balls, sending out her Ledian and Hypno]

    "Ledian and Hypno? This won't be too hard. Go, Tyranitar and Salamence! Salamence, use Crunch!"

    Salamence lunged at Hypno with fangs bared, and crunched on it with great force.

    "Hypno, counter with Ice Punch!"

    Hypno caught Salamence before the dragon could escape and struck it with a powerful, icy punch.

    "Ledian, Signal Beam!"

    Ledian's eyes glowed, then it fired a rainbow beam at Tyranitar. The beam made contact for a somewhat powerful hit.

    "Show them our true power! Tyranitar, Rock Slide!"

    Tyranitar used its incredible strength to lift several rocks and send them flying at Arlen's team. They struck both Hypno and Ledian--being weakened, Hypno went down, and Ledian was knocked out by the attack instantly as well.

    "All right! Two down at once!"

    Rich hugged Anabel while Arlen angrily recalled her two Pokémon.

    "You may think you have the upper hand, but it's not over yet! Go, Vibrava and Ampharos!"

    The Shadow Vibrava appeared alongside an Ampharos.

    "Ampharos, finish that Salamence with Ice Punch!"

    Ampharos lunged at Salamence, ready to strike with Ice Punch, but Salamence put up a Protect to block the blow.

    "It isn't going to be that easy. Tyranitar, use Earthquake!"

    Tyranitar stomped the ground powerfully, creating a shock wave. Salamence and Vibrava flew over it, but Ampharos took a direct hit and fainted.

    "N-NOOOOOO!!! Master Snattle.........ooohhh......return, Ampharos! Go, Nosepass! Vibrava, Shadow Rave!"

    Vibrava sent out spikes of shadow energy, striking Rich's team and causing Salamence to faint.

    "That's okay. Salamence, have a nice rest. Go, Milotic! Use Hydro Pump on Nosepass!"

    Milotic fired a jet of water from its mouth at Nosepass, hitting it dead-on. The Nosepass did manage to brace itself with Endure, however, so it survived the attack.

    "Tyranitar, Crunch that Vibrava!"

    Tyranitar did so, crunching Vibrava with its sharp fangs. The attack did a good amount of damage.

    "Nosepass, Thunderbolt!"

    Bolts of electricity launched out from Nosepass's big red nose, zapping Milotic but not injuring it much.

    "Shadow Rave!"

    Vibrava sent out more shadowy spikes, again doing a bit of damage to Rich's team.

    "Milotic, finish off Nosepass! Ice Beam!"

    Milotic hit Nosepass with an icy-cold beam, defeating it.

    "Nosepass, return! Vibrava........"

    "Snag Ball, go!"

    As Arlen watched in horror, Rich threw a Snag Ball that easily Snagged away her Shadow Vibrava.

    "Crushed again! Master Snattle, I have failed you!"

    //////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    As Arlen fled the arena following her loss, Snattle clenched his fists and stamped his feet. His anger had finally reached the boiling point.

    "Grrrrrrraaaaaahh!!!" he snarled in rage. "I've had enough of your foolish meddling!"

    "Oh really. And what will you do about it?"

    "Your interference in Enigma Shadow's plans and in my own personal goal of becoming Orre's Governor has reached its end. Now is when you pay for your mischievous deeds against us, because now you will answer to ME!"
    /////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Pkmn Trainer Rich ---vs.--- Shadow Admin Snattle
    /////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    [Snattle steps forward, holds his hands in the air, then points menacingly at Rich. He then sends out a Porygon2 and a Jynx]

    "You're about to be impeached, governor. Go, Blaziken and Tyranitar!"

    Right after Rich sent out his Pokémon, the Aura Reader suddenly activated and detected Snattle's Porygon2 as a Shadow Pokémon.

    "So you've got a Shadow Porygon2 now? Fine. Blaziken, attack with Blaze Kick!"

    Blaziken lept up and sped down right towards Jynx with its leg extended and flaming.

    "Mufwofwo. Jynx, dodge and use Hypnosis!"

    Jynx took several steps backwards. This caused Blaziken to crash into the ground where it had been standing. Just as it stood up, Jynx was easily able to then lock eyes with it and put it to sleep with a mysterious spell.

    "Blaziken, no!"

    "Mufwofwofwo! Send him to beddy-bye, Jynx! Dream Eater!"

    Jynx's body glowed with a strange aura as it began to power up, then it sent shadowy clones of itself at Blaziken. The clones hit, absorbed all of Blaziken's energy, and made it faint.

    Snattle took a bow to no one in particular, proud of his easy work. Rich meanwhile recalled Blaziken without a word and gritted his teeth as he threw another Poké Ball, sending out Milotic.

    "Your Pokémon stand no chance against me this time. Give up now!"

    "No. You're going down, Snattle."

    "Psssh.....I guess I'll have to teach you the hard way. Porygon2, Shadow Bolt!"

    Porygon2 absorbed shadow energy then fired it out in the form of a dark lightning bolt at Tyranitar. Tyranitar recieved quite a shock from this attack.

    "Tyranitar, it's time for something different. Metronome!"

    Tyranitar waggled its claws back and forth, then one of its arms glowed with a silver shine as it swung and punched Porygon2 with a powerful Meteor Mash.

    "Mfph. Jynx, Hyper Beam!"

    Jynx crossed its hands and focused, then blasted a massive energy beam at Milotic. The attack hit and caused very high damage.

    "Goodbye, Milotic. Use Shadow Bolt!"

    Porygon2 zapped Milotic with another dark lightning bolt, making the Water Pokémon faint.

    "Return, Milotic! Looks like I need to change it up a little......Alakazam, go! Use Thunder Wave now!"

    As soon as Alakazam was released from its ball, it emitted weak electrical pulses from its body to paralyze Porygon2.

    "Porygon2, Shadow Sky!"

    Porygon2 focused and sent a burst of shadow energy into the sky. It went up very high, then exploded into an aura that covered the entire area above Realgam Tower.

    "Tyranitar, use Crunch!"

    Tyranitar rushed at Porygon2 and crunched it with its powerful jaws.

    "That's enough. Snag Ball, go!"

    Rich threw a Snag Ball at Porygon2. The ball absorbed its target and fell to the glossy arena floor. It then tilted...............

    .......once..........




    ......twice..........




    .......and three times, then it pinged. Bursts of light rained down from the shadow aura and struck all the Pokémon.

    "Well done, Rich. Unfortunately for you, there's still no chance of your winning. Go, Venomoth! Jynx, use Mega Punch!"

    Jynx rushed towards Alakazam and swung its fist forward, but Alakazam put up a Protect shield to block it.

    "Good thinking, Alakazam. Now, take that Venomoth down with Psychic!"

    Alakazam's eyes glowed with a blue aura, then the same aura surrounded Venomoth. It only did a bit of damage, however, before Venomoth broke the attack with its own Protect.

    "Mufwofwo! It won't be that easy! Venomoth, Silver Wind!"

    Venomoth launched a wave of sparkling powder at Alakazam. This attack was super-effective and all but knocked out Alakazam.

    "Arghh......Tyranitar, take down that Venomoth at all costs! Get in close and use Fire Blast!"

    Tyranitar began running towards Venomoth. Snattle smirked wickedly.

    "That was a foolish choice. Venomoth, Silver Wind!"

    Venomoth began sending more sparkling powder at Tyranitar, but Rich's Pokémon suddenly loosed a fireball from its mouth at the Bug type. The fireball burned right through the powder and struck Venomoth with incredible power, knocking it out.

    "Venomoth! Aha.....very clever, Rich, very, very clever. Return, Venomoth. Next up is.........Castform!"

    As soon as Snattle sent out his Castform, more bursts of light rained down and struck the battling Pokémon.

    "Jynx, I've had enough of this foolishness. End these games! Mega Punch!"

    Jynx came forward again and smashed Alakazam with its fist. Alakazam couldn't take any more, and fainted.

    "This....this cannot.......return, Alakazam! Go, Salamence! Brick Break!"

    Salamence burst from its ball and immediately took to the air. It glided around then dove and smashed Castform with its claws for a powerful hit.

    "Castform! Water Pulse!"

    Castform took a deep breath then exhaled sonic water waves that hit Tyranitar forcefully.

    "You use Brick Break now, Tyranitar!"

    Tyranitar's claw glowed red, then it smashed Castform in much a similar way to Salamence's. Castform was knocked out by this attack.

    "Mufwofwofwo.......hmmmm, Castform, return. Things aren't going as well as I had hoped, so good luck........go, Scizor!"

    Scizor appeared on Snattle's side of the arena, then more bursts of light rained down to strike all four Pokémon.

    "We needn't show any mercy, Jynx. ICE BEAM!"

    Rich knew what would result the moment Snattle ordered the attack. Jynx launched a beam of ice at Salamence, and the dragon fainted instantly upon being hit.

    "Salamence, I'm sorry.....return. You're my last hope, Ludicolo! Use Fire Punch, let's go!"

    Ludicolo's fists burned with fire, then it struck Scizor---Scizor, being incredibly weak to fire attacks, fainted instantly.

    "Well that wasn't what I had hoped for. Return, Scizor! Now, I'm down to my final encore as well. Go, Banette! Let us battle to the bitter end!"

    Snattle's final Pokémon, a Banette, was tagged by the Aura Reader as a Shadow Pokémon.

    "Tyranitar, we need to get Banette out of the way. Thunder Wave it!"

    Tyranitar weakly jolted Banette with electricity, paralyzing it. Right then, still more bursts of light rained down, striking Ludicolo, Tyranitar and Jynx.

    "Jynx, there's a spot in dreamland with that Ludicolo's name on it! Hypnosis!"

    "Don't look into its eyes, Ludicolo!"

    Jynx began to cast the Hypnosis spell, and Ludicolo began to fall under. However, Ludicolo suddenly shut its eyes and pulled out of the spell's influence. Snattle's attack was utterly ineffective.

    "Yes! Ludicolo, fight back! Hydro Pump on Banette!"

    Ludicolo launched a powerful jet of water at Banette, striking it hard.

    "Water Pulse, Tyranitar!"

    Tyranitar breathed sonic water waves to strike Banette. The attack did a small amount of damage, but this seemed to be what Rich wanted.

    "Banette........."

    Snattle didn't even bother ordering an attack, as Banette was quite obviously paralyzed completely. The flashing lights rained down once more on all the non-Shadows.

    "Jynx, one last try! Hyper Beam!"

    Jynx blasted Ludicolo with the massive energy beam attack. It scored a critical hit and knocked out Ludicolo.

    "Ludicolo, return! Looks like we've got only one chance left.......Snag Ball, go!"

    Rich threw a Snag Ball at the Banette. The ball absorbed the Shadow Pokémon and fell to the floor, then it began rocking.




    It rocked once.......




    Twice........







    Three times, then it pinged.

    "Gaahhhh! It's all up to you now, Jynx!"

    Bursts of light rained down on all the Pokémon, then the shadowy aura cleared from the sky.

    "Tyranitar, I taste victory---and it tastes sweet! FIRE BLAST!!!!!!"

    Tyranitar attacked with one last, massive blast of fire. It struck Jynx with incredibly powerful strength, making the menacing Psychic and Ice type finally faint.

    "My promise! My political career had so much promise!"

    ////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "Grrrrrrrr......." Snattle was clearly enraged, but he managed to mask it well. "You have bested me again, I hate to admit. This time I will pull out quietly and abandon my plans, but don't you dare think this is where it ends! One day, Enigma Shadow and I will take great pleasure in destroying you thoroughly!"

    Snattle ran off to the right hand elevator, and escaped the Colosseum. Rich and Anabel ran over to where Trest and Justy were tied up and freed them.

    "Are you two alright, Mr. Mayor, Justy?"

    "Ahhh, feels good to stretch my bones," Trest said in relief. "Those scoundrels just ambushed Justy and I in Phenac, then took us here."

    "Well, it's over now," Anabel assured them.

    "So you're Rich and Anabel? Allow me to introduce myself formally. I am Justy, the Leader of the Prestige Precept Center in Phenac City. Everyone just calls it Pre Gym, though."

    "And I'm Phenac's Mayor, Trest. I must say, your battles were fantastic, Rich. I feel you deserve this, so please, take it."

    Trest extended his hand and opened it---the emblem of Realgam Colosseum was held inside.

    "Really, I may have it? I didn't win a legitimate competition."

    "You knocked out four strong trainers, so it's good enough for me. Please, I insist."

    Rich took the emblem from Trest and held it in his hand. He looked at it and smiled, then added it to his case along with the Pyrite Emblem.

    "Very well, then. Justy and I must be going back to Phenac now, why don't you come along with us?"

    "An excellent idea, Mayor. They could help teach some of my Pre Gym students."

    "So what do you say?"

    "I'm game. Are you, Anabel?"

    "I sure am!"





    And so, Rich defeated Snattle and freed the Mayor of Phenac City along with Pre Gym's Leader Justy. But it wasn't until after a series of fierce battles in the Realgam Colosseum that earned Rich the Realgam Emblem---the second step to Orre Colosseum and the Orre League championships. With Enigma Shadow on the run for now, our heroes head to Phenac City. What new adventures await them there? Stay tuned!


    END of CHAPTER THREE

  7. #7
    追放されたバカ Nando's Avatar
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    CHAPTER FOUR: Justy Desserts!


    One would never guess Phenac City was in the heart of the desert. It shined with abundant water flowing through the city's canals and fountains. The stone canals formed the city's boundaries, and the structures of the canals fused into the stone houses. The water flowed out from a dome at the far end of the city (the dome being the now-abandoned Phenac Stadium) through the canals and to where the currents met at one of the gates.

    Phenac was built in three levels. A Pokémon Center, a shop and a home or two were built around the fountain on the first level. Up the stairs, the second level had the Mayor's home, the Pre Gym, and the rest of Phenac's private houses. Finally, on the third level was the old Stadium by itself.

    While Justy had gone off to reopen the Pre Gym, Rich and Anabel had followed Trest to his home. Inside the Mayor's house was a luxurious atmosphere. A fuzzy red rug covered much of the floor, and around the room's perimeter were a plush red couch, a big-screen TV, a music software player, and a pair of bookcases. Trest sat down on a black leather chair behind his large oak desk and beckoned Rich and Anabel to sit across from him, which they did.

    "I wish to thank you again for helping Justy and I out of that predicament at the Realgam Tower. I shudder to think what would have happened if you hadn't defeated Snattle and freed us."

    "Really, it was nothing. Anabel and I, we couldn't have left you there."

    "But still, the thought of what they may have had planned frightens me. Three years ago, when Cipher made its return under Grand Master Greevil, Snattle led an entire army of Cipher members into our city. He took myself, Justy, and almost all our citizens hostage, then replaced them with their troops. They even took our Nurse Joy, leaving the Pokémon Center unattended! Trainers who happened to stumble upon Phenac were left unable to heal their Pokémon!"

    "That's terrible!" Anabel said. "Though I guess I shouldn't put it past them...."

    "Thankfully, Michael---who is now the curator of Pyrite's Museum---came to our city and saved us. He defeated all the Cipher troops then took down Snattle. I wonder if they had planned a similar stunt this time by removing Justy and I from the picture first?"

    "That may be exact---"

    Before Rich could finish his sentence, ONBS came on the TV. Trest, Rich and Anabel all turned to face the image of Ancha on the screen.

    "We bring you an ONBS breaking news item! Trest, the Mayor of Phenac City, has been freed from imprisonment in the Realgam Tower along with the Pre Gym's leader Justy. Reports say they were rescued by none other than Rich and Anabel Mistbloom, the trainers touring Orre and taking on Enigma Shadow. The leader of the gang holding them was Snattle, a high-ranking member of Enigma Shadow wanted after his escape from prison.

    Unfortunately, Snattle escaped the Realgam Tower before authorities could arrive. The police do suspect, however, that he was the mastermind behind an Enigma Shadow takeover attempt of ONBS as well as the heist of one million dollars worth of Poké Balls from the Outskirt Stand. All citizens and organizations in Orre are urged to take extra caution as Enigma Shadow has returned with a vengeance."

    Rich and Anabel turned back to Trest as the news report ended.

    "Well, I don't know what to say. You kids are talented beyond your years, that's for sure. You know what? I'm sure Justy has finished preparing the Pre Gym by now. Why don't you go pay him a visit? I'll send an e-mail if I happen to hear anything."

    "Good idea, Mr. Mayor. Rich, let's go."

    Rich and Anabel got up and left the Mayor's home. They walked down the road a ways and soon found themselves at the front door of the Pre Gym. It was a large building, shaped like a stone half-circle. "PRESTIGE PRECEPT CENTER---Pre Gym Entrance" was written on a sign next to the door. Rich and Anabel went inside.

    -----------------------------------------------------------------------

    The interior of the Pre Gym was neatly arranged. On the left side of the wide chamber was a short flight of stairs leading to some tables arranged in front of a whiteboard---space which was used as a class area. To the right, another short flight of stairs leading up to an area with a large metallic desk, a bookcase and two devices for battle data-keeping. These two areas overlooked the third raised area, a battle arena in the center. On the far end of the battle arena was a large Poké Ball rising from the floor.

    "Anabel, isn't this a bit strange?"

    "What do you mean?"

    "We know Justy went here, and this is a popular training school, so why is there noone here?"

    "Good point......perhaps Justy went out while we were visiting the Mayor. We can just wait for him-----"

    The large Poké Ball rose up from the ground, an elevator underneath it. Justy stepped out.

    "No need to wait, I was just downstairs in the training area making preparations. Are you two up to teaching my students?"

    Rich and Anabel nodded, so Justy guided them into the elevator. He got in after they did and pushed the button to make the elevator go down.

    The basement of the Pre Gym was an expansive training facility. It had areas of grass, sand, rocks, and other environments. A number of boys and girls sat on the grass in the center of the chamber, waiting for their lesson to begin. Justy stepped out of the elevator and stood right in front of it, blocking the students from seeing Rich and Anabel just yet.

    "Mr. Justy, when is our class going to start?" a boy complained.

    "Now, now, Vincent, don't be rude. I have prepared a special surprise for you all today. Today's class will be taught by a pair of traveling trainers who were kind enough to take time out from their journeys to stop off here. It is my honor to present as today's special Pre Gym teachers.........Rich and Anabel Mistbloom!"

    Justy stepped aside, allowing Rich and Anabel to leave the elevator. They walked down the stairs to the training ground, and took a bow.

    "Yes, thank you, Justy."

    "Hey!" a girl called out. "You're that guy from Larousse City!"

    "Hahah, yes, that is me. It is a great honor for my wife and I to be able to teach you all today. It's even more special for me because I was born here in Phenac, and now I get the chance to teach the next generation of great trainers in Orre."

    "Let's start off with some basic questions," Anabel began. "Raise your hands if you know the answer. If you are battling against a Gyarados, what type of attack is most effective?"

    Another girl raised her hand, and Anabel pointed to her.

    "Electric, Miss Anabel."

    "Very good!"

    "To follow that up, does anyone know what attack Gyarados could learn to defend itself from electricity?"

    Vincent, the boy from earlier, raised his hand.

    "Vincent?"

    "That would be Earthquake, sir."

    "Correct! You all seem to be very knowledgeable about Pokémon. Hah, with a teacher as good as Justy it should be no surprise. Let's try something a bit more difficult, then. Anabel?"

    "Right. Okay, try this one: you have a Skarmory, and you are battling an opponent with six Shedinjas in a Single Battle. In two turns, how can you defeat all six of them?"

    There was a moment of silence as the class thought the question over, then several kids raised their hands. Anabel pointed at a young boy on the opposite end of the grass field.

    "Miss Anabel, you would use Spikes then Whirlwind."

    "That's correct! Would you care to explain how that works?"

    "Spikes sets out a layer of spikes that damages Pokémon as they enter the battle. After laying out Spikes, a Whirlwind will force your opponent to switch Pokémon. The Spikes will instantly knock out a Shedinja, then the next one to come out will be defeated as well, and so on."

    "Very well done!" Rich complimented. "Justy, you sure teach these kids well! They might know enough to teach me and Anabel!"

    "Ahahahah. That won't be necessary. Class, would you like it if Rich gave us a different surprise?"

    The class responded positively to Justy's question, while Rich and Anabel just looked on without a clue as to Justy's intent.

    "Very well, then. Rich, as a lesson for my students I would like to challenge you to a battle."

    "Oh, that's what you want! I'd love to battle you, the students could learn a lot from something like that."

    "Good. Let's move to the battlefield, then."

    ----------------------------------------------------------------------

    A short while later, everyone had gone up to the first floor for the battle. Rich stood on the left side of the battlefield, Justy on the right. The students and Anabel all stood at the rail of the classroom's platform to watch. Justy's aide, a woman with her brown hair done up in a 'beehive' shape, stood on the battlefield right in front of the elevator.

    "The battle between Rich, champion of the Larousse City Battle Tower, and Justy, the leader of Pre Gym, will now begin! Each trainer will use up to five Pokémon in a Single Battle, and the match will end when one trainer wins three rounds! Trainers, send out your Pokémon!"

    /////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Pkmn Trainer Rich ---vs.--- Pre Gym Leader Justy
    ////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "Let's go, Cacturne!"

    "If that's how you want to play, I'll bring out Blaziken! Go!"

    "Rich's Blaziken versus Justy's Cacturne! Round one, begin!"

    "Blaziken, get us off to a quick start! Blaze Kick!"

    Blaziken jumped up and flew towards Cacturne with its leg extended and flaming.

    "Cacture, dodge and use Sandstorm!"

    Cacturne jumped out of the way of Blaziken's attack, then waved its arms. A vicious sandstorm was whipped up and enveloped the arena. Not only that, it made a number of false Cacturnes appear to confuse Rich and Blaziken.

    "Blaziken, don't fall for that! Overheat!"

    Blaziken took a deep breath, drawing in superheated air, then blew it back out as a massive fireball. The flames pierced through the sandstorm.....and hit one of the fake Cacturnes. It did nothing.

    "Cacturne, now use Double Team!"

    All the Cacturnes waved their arms and spun around----then suddenly, there were dozens more false copies.

    "Agggghh.....how am I to......Blaziken, Flamethrower! Hit as many as you can!"

    Rich's Pokémon grew angry and began loosing flames from its mouth. It hit several fake Cacturnes, but still couldn't hit the real one.

    "Yes! Now, Cacturne, Aerial Ace! Let's go!"

    All the Cacturnes suddenly stopped moving, all at once. They all shook their arms, then jumped and rushed Blaziken like ghouls born of sand. Even though dozens of them were fakes, every Aerial Ace was real---Blaziken took catastrophic damage, and fainted.

    "Blaziken is unable to battle! Round one goes to Justy and Cacturne!"

    Rich grunted as he recalled Blaziken. Justy was smiling as he removed Cacturne from the battle.

    "See, class, Cacturne's Sand Veil ability makes it hard to hit in a sandstorm. When used in tandem with Double Team, Cacturne becomes ridiculously hard to land a hit on. Now for the next segment of our lesson! Go, Castform!"

    "This time, I won't go down as easily. Tyranitar, let's go!"

    "Rich's Tyranitar versus Justy's Castform! Round two, begin!"

    "Tyranitar, use Substitute!"

    Tyranitar vanished in a puff of smoke, leaving a doll of itself behind.

    "This calls for a Rain Dance, Castform!"

    Castform cried out cutely. This made the sandstorm fade, then clouds filled the upper reaches of the building and rain began to fall. This caused Justy's Normal type to transform into the Water type Rain Castform.

    "Tyranitar, get ready.....you know what I want from you....."

    "Ahaha, I think this round will be mine as well. Castform, Water Pulse!"

    Castform launched sonic waves of water at Tyranitar's Substitute. Powered up by the rain, they hit the doll and instantly defeated it. The real Tyranitar returned.

    "Now, show him your preparations! Focus Punch!"

    Tyranitar's claw glowed bright red, then it swung and hit Castform with incredible force. The attack was too powerful for the small Pokémon, and it fainted.

    "Castform is unable to continue! Round two goes to Rich and Tyranitar, and the match is tied at one all!"

    Rich and Justy recalled their Pokémon, then Rich turned to the class.

    "Class, take a note of that. If a Pokémon that is about to use Focus Punch is hit by an opponent's attack, it flinches and loses the chance to attack back. You can get around that by using Substitute, as even if the Substitute is broken Focus Punch will still succeed."

    Rich turned back to the battle, and drew out another Poké Ball.

    "Next up, I'll have to go with.......Magneton, go!"

    "Then I'll counter with Alakazam!"

    "Rich's Alakazam versus Justy's Magneton! Round three, begin!"

    "Alakazam, Fire Punch!"

    Alakazam rushed Magneton and swung its flaming fist, but Magneton put up a Protect to block.

    "Good dodge, Magneton. Now use Lock-On!"

    Magneton's eyes glowed green as its gaze fixed on Alakazam in preparation for an attack.

    "Hrmmm.....what could follow Lock-On.......oh, of course! Alakazam, we can deal with that. Fire Punch again!"

    This time, Magneton could not protect itself and keep its aim at the same time so the Fire Punch hit. It caused quite a bit of damage.

    "Haha, it's time for the second half of our combo. ZAP CANNON!"

    Electricity began pulsing between Magneton's segments, then a huge orb of electric energy formed between them and was fired at Alakazam.

    "Block that with Light Screen!"

    Alakazam crossed its spoons, and red light poured out of them. The light congealed in front of the Pokémon and formed a glowing shield. When the Zap Cannon hit the light, it exploded and filled the room with smoke. The smoke slowly cleared to reveal Alakazam and Magneton both fainted.

    "Both Alakazam AND Magneton are unable to battle! The point goes to both Rich and Justy, tying the match at two all!"

    "Alakazam, return. I understand why you're the Pre Gym leader, Justy. You're quite a challenge, but I'm afraid this is where it stops. Milotic, let's go!"

    "Haha, you return too, Magneton. I've not had a battle this enjoyable in quite some time. Your strategy of blocking my Lock-On and Zap Cannon combo was quite creative. No matter the outcome I bet my students will learn a lot. It's all down to this now, Nosepass! Go!"

    "Rich's Milotic versus Justy's Nosepass! Final round, begin!"

    "I suspect he's got something up his sleeve....why would he send a Nosepass against my Milotic?"

    "Rich, think about it," Anabel said telepathically to Rich. "Nosepass can use electrical attacks."

    "Oh, right! I forgot about that, thanks! Milotic, let's not mess around. Hydro Pump!"

    Milotic aimed a powerful blast of water at Justy's Nosepass, but missed.

    "Good job dodging, Nosepass. Let's up the stakes with Double Team!"

    Nosepass waved its arms, then seven more Nosepass appeared and mixed themselves up with the real one.

    "Not this nonsense again....I can't lose to it this time. Milotic, give them the best Hydro Pump you've got!"

    Milotic took a deep breath, then blasted another jet of water out. It hit three of the Nosepass, but they were all fakes.

    "Yes! It's working! Nosepass, let's go for the win---Thunderbolt!"

    The five remaining Nosepass lined up and launched electrical bolts from their noses at Milotic. Rich smirked......he knew what had to be done.

    "Milotic, Mirror Coat!"

    Milotic's body began glowing with a mirror like shine. When the bolts hit it, they were reflected back at the attackers with doubled intensity. When the real Nosepass's reflected attack hit it, it fainted.

    "Nosepass is unable to continue! The round goes to Milotic, and the victory to Rich!"

    "Hahah! What a battle!"

    ////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "Wow, Rich, you really are something. I haven't had a battle this enjoyable in a long time, nor have I lost like that in recent memory. In fact, I think my last two losses in that vein were to Michael three years ago and Wes nearly a decade ago."

    "It wouldn't have been nearly as interesting without your effort, Justy." Rich turned to face the students, whom Justy was already facing. "Well, how was it? Did you all enjoy today's special lesson?"

    The students responded very enthusiastically, and Anabel joined in by applauding gently.

    "That was very good, Rich. I'm impres--oog......"

    "Anabel? What's wrong, Anabel?"

    "I.....ugh....feel....fai---"

    Suddenly and without warning, Anabel fainted, fell over the rail, and hit her head on the floor.

    "ANABEL!!"

    ------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Some time later, Anabel woke up in a bed inside Phenac's Pokémon Center. Also in the room were Rich and Justy, who were talking to a Nurse Joy with a Chansey by her side.

    "Tell me, Nurse Joy. Is she going to be alright?"

    "Oh, there's no worry, Rich. She suffered very minor head trauma from the fall, nothing more. Had she fallen from a higher distance it may have been different, but I say we should be glad that wasn't so."

    "I'd say. I'm glad she's alright, I don't think my students could have handled a tragedy right in front of their eyes during a class."

    "R.....Ri......." Anabel said weakly, trying to get Rich's attention.

    Rich did notice her weak pleading. He turned around to her and took her hand in his.

    "Anabel, I'm here for you. I'll always be. It was an accident what happened, but we can get through this."

    "I know this is a rather inopportune time to mention this, Rich, but......"

    "What, Justy?"

    "I had a tip on where you should go after Phenac. But now, with all that's happened, I doubt you'd want to leave."

    "T-tell him......Justy....."

    "If you insist, Anabel. Rich, far to the north of Phenac is Eclo Canyon. Recently built there is the Snagem Colosseum."

    "Snagem? As in Team Snagem? When did they get a Colosseum?!!"

    "As I understand it, they negotiated it as part of a deal to stay out of jail. I don't know all the details, but they seem to have turned away from being criminals and now are dedicated wholly to battling. I also heard rumors about a Shadow Haunter and a Shadow Illumise being there."

    "Those are the two Shadow Pokémon I missed Snagging earlier on. So perhaps the members of Team Snagem picked them up....."

    "I'd guess so. I've also heard another rumor. There's supposedly this incredibly strong trainer that dominates the tournaments at Snagem Colosseum. He calls himself Juggernaut and battles with an amazingly strong team of Pokémon."

    "Sounds exciting, Justy. I'd love to go....but I have other commitments. I have to stay here and take care of Anabel. I'd be breaking the promises I made to her if I didn't."

    Anabel pulled on Rich's sleeve gently to get his attention.

    "Please, go....I....I'll be fine......."

    "Are you sure, Anabel?"

    "Yes....I want you to go there....follow....follow your heart...."

    "Anabel, my heart is here--with you! Are you absolutely sure you want me to go so far away from Phenac while you're here?"

    "You....you must go there. The emblem of Snagem Colosseum......"

    Anabel struggled to say more, but couldn't.

    "......I understand. I will go to the Snagem Colosseum and defeat Juggernaut....for you." Rich stood up and turned to leave, but stopped and turned back. "If we must be apart, I'd like to give you something at least so part of me is here."

    Rich took out an elegant flute, carved out of a beautiful seashell. He set it on the table next to Anabel's bed.

    "Lugia's Flute.....keep it while I am gone, Anabel." Rich gently kissed Anabel, then got up and again walked towards the door. He stopped right before leaving. "Nurse Joy. What do you say is the prognosis?"

    "She'll recover, but she's going to be very weak for a while. I want to keep her here so we can run some more tests, which should be done by the time you return from Eclo Canyon."

    "Good. Thank you. And Justy, thank you for all your help as well. Wish me luck in the Snagem Colosseum challenge."

    "Good luck, Rich. Thank you for all you did for us, rescuing Trest and I from Snattle and all."

    "Good........lu....."

    Anabel tried to wish Rich luck, but again, was too weak. She was only able to wave her hand weakly. Rich nodded to her, then left silently.

    "He's a truehearted person....." Nurse Joy commented. "Very honorable......right, Chansey?"

    "Chaaaan! Siiiiiiiiiii!!!"

    "Justy, I'm sorry, but I'll have to ask you to leave now."

    "I understand, Joy. Anabel, I will be hoping for your speedy recovery."

    Justy left the room and closed the door behind him.

    "You're a very lucky lady, Mrs. Mistbloom. You've got a lot of people watching out for you."

    ---------------------------------------------------------------------

    Rich was already on the road, riding north through the desert towards Eclo Canyon. He was driving with a blank expression on his face, and his thoughts weren't on what he was doing. He was too worried about Anabel and already missed her.




    Rich and Anabel took in one of Phenac City's most famous attractions, the Pre Gym, firsthand. They helped teach a class with Justy, then Rich defeated the Gym's leader in a closely fought match. But sadly Rich and Anabel are now apart, the latter in the hospital while the former heads off to the next Colosseum challenge. Will Rich be able to defeat the mysterious Juggernaut and bring the Snagem Emblem back to Anabel? Stay tuned!


    END of CHAPTER FOUR

  8. #8
    追放されたバカ Nando's Avatar
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    CHAPTER FIVE: Enter the Juggernaut!



    There was little apparent sign of life as Rich approached the mouth of Eclo Canyon. The canyon was in the most desolate area of Orre, the northeastern desert. Even though the canyon's entrance was wide, Rich nearly crashed into the rock wall because of having his hat pulled over his eyes to shield them from a blinding sandstorm he had encountered. Once he was in the canyon, however, the sandstorm cleared up.

    Rich stopped the scooter, fixed his hat, and got off. Nearby was a large building constructed of iron plates, and further down the canyon a similar but run-down building could be seen. Rich walked to the nearby building's front door.

    "Snagem Colosseum Entrance. I guess this is where I have to go....."

    Before he could go in, Rich's P*DA rang. He flipped it open and read the new e-mail it had recieved.

    [=====================================]
    Sender: Prof. Krane
    Subject: P*DA Upgrade

    Hi, Rich. I heard from Justy what happened at the
    Pre Gym, I'm wishing for Anabel's quick recovery.

    I also have something for you. There have been
    a swath of new Pokémon discovered of late, and
    many trainers have them. To help you I've
    programmed this message to automatically
    upgrade your P*DA's Strategy Memo so it
    can give you the data on new Pokémon
    as you see them.

    Good luck with those Colosseum challenges!

    Prof. Krane

    [======================================]

    "Well! I'll have to remember to thank him next time we see him. New Pokémon......I wonder if I'll see any here."

    Rich opened the door and stepped inside. Immediately he was greeted by the Colosseum's attendant.

    "Hello! Welcome to the Snagem Colosseum. How may I help you?"

    "I would like to register for a knockout challenge, thank you."

    "Very well. May I see your pass?"

    Rich handed the receptionist the pass. She scanned it and gave it back.

    "Mr. Mistbloom, your registration was successful. Please follow me through this way."

    The attendant opened the front gate and led Rich into the waiting room.

    "I should warn you, Mr. Mistbloom.......the Juggernaut has entered this challenge as well. His Pokémon battle with brutish force."

    "So I've heard."

    "Okay, then the rules. Battles here are conducted in the Double Battle style. Each trainer is allowed to use any four Pokémon from their teams of six, but once four faint their trainer loses. I wish you luck, sir."

    The receptionist went back out of the room. After a short while, another attendant came in from the other side.

    "Mr. Rich Mistbloom?"

    "Yes, that's me."

    "Come with me. Your first round match is ready."

    Rich followed the woman out of the waiting room to the arena...........

    ----------------------------------------------------------------------

    The main arena inside the Snagem Colosseum was built of rusted-out metal. A few spotlights hung from the top to provide light in the dark chamber, and the crowd area ringed the arena floor.

    "Welcome to a knockout challenge at the Snagem Colosseum!" the announcer called out. "Now, please welcome our first two competitors!"

    Rich entered from the gate on the left side of the arena. From the right entered a man dressed like a cowboy, with a denim blue jacket, pants of the same color, and a brown cowboy hat.

    "Rich vs. Joseph, begin!"

    "Hello, there! You look tough, but my Eevees are not to be taken lightly!"

    //////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Pkmn Trainer Rich ---vs.--- Rider Joseph
    //////////////////////////////////////////////////

    [Joseph throws two Poké Balls, sending out an Eevee and a Vaporeon]

    "Eevee and Vaporeon? Let's then go with.........Blaziken and Ludicolo!"

    "Very well, then. Eevee, Helping Hand!"

    Eevee ran to Vaporeon, turned, and touched its tail to Vaporeon's body. Both glowed red as Eevee powered Vaporeon up.

    "Blaziken, use Sky Uppercut!"

    Blaziken rushed at Eevee and wound up for a powerful uppercut, but Vaporeon put up a Protect and shielded both itself and Eevee.

    "It's not going to be that easy. Vaporeon, Hydro Pump!"

    Powered up by Eevee, Vaporeon launched a jet of water that instantly knocked out Blaziken.

    "Aha, very well done! Blaziken, return. Go, Tyranitar! Ludicolo, Giga Drain!"

    Ludicolo jumped onto Vaporeon and drained much of its energy.

    "Use another Helping Hand, Eevee!"

    Eevee touched its tail to Vaporeon again, once more powering it up.

    "Tyranitar, we've got to take it out now! Thunder!"

    Tyranitar absorbed energy, then launched several lightning bolts up into the air. The bolts then crashed down and damaged Vaporeon greatly. It didn't faint, but it became paralyzed.

    "Vaporeon, Hydro Pump that Tyranitar right outta here!"

    Vaporeon tried to attack, but the paralysis made it fail.

    "Hmhmhm. Let's teach him something now, Ludicolo. Class is in session. Giga Drain!"

    Ludicolo attacked Vaporeon again and drained the rest of its energy, defeating it.

    "Vaporeon, return! Hmmmm....I think I should up the stakes a bit. Go, Jolteon! Eevee, use another Helping Hand on Jolteon!"

    Eevee repeated the move again, powering up its Jolteon partner.

    "Now, Jolteon, unleash a Thunderbolt!"

    Jolteon launched a massive blast of electricity at Ludicolo. At the very last moment, however, Ludicolo put up a Protect. The electricity hit the shield and exploded, doing no harm.

    "I don't think we need to hold back anymore, Tyranitar. Earthquake!"

    Tyranitar jumped up and slammed its entire weight down on the ground, creating a powerful shock wave. Ludicolo was hit but not terribly affected, while Eevee was all but knocked out and Jolteon instantly fainted.

    "Jolteon, return........Flareon, it's all up to you now!"

    "Ludicolo, use Brick Break! Finish Eevee off!"

    Ludicolo charged at Eevee and slammed its hands into the small Pokémon, which fainted.

    "Return, Eevee! Flareon, Overheat! Let's go!"

    Flareon absorbed air and superheated it, turning itself into a sort of living fireball. It then charged and tackled Ludicolo, taking it down.

    "Ludicolo, take a break. Get out there, Milotic! Tyranitar, let's go for the win now. Rock Slide!"

    Tyranitar drilled the ground with its claw, kicking up several large rocks. The rocks crashed down on Flareon in a cloud of dust. When the dust cleared, Flareon was down.

    "You're good to beat my Eevees!"

    ////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "The winner is Rich! Congratulations!"

    Rich took a bow as the crowd cheered for him. The attendant then came out and took him back to the waiting room.

    ------------------------------------------------------------------

    Some time later, the attendant returned.

    "Mr. Mistbloom, your second round match is ready. Are you prepared?"

    "Yes. Let's do it."

    The attendant led Rich back out of the waiting room and to the arena.....

    -------------------------------------------------------------------

    "The second round of the Snagem Colosseum knockout challenge is about to begin! Please welcome the next two competitors!"

    Rich entered from his gate on the left, while from the right entered a man dressed in a red vest and thick black pants. The man seemed to have shaved his head, leaving his black hair only making a ring around his head connecting at his ears.

    "Round two, Rich versus Biden! Let the battle begin!"

    "You've got guts to come into Team Snagem's turf. Now let me show you our traditions!"

    //////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Pkmn Trainer Rich ---vs.--- Team Snagem Biden
    //////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    [Biden throws two Poké Balls, sending out a Smeargle and a Beedrill]

    "Let's get going, Blaziken and Alakazam! Alakazam, Fire Punch!"

    Alakazam rushed towards Beedrill, its fist flaming.

    "Beedrill! Counter that with Twineedle!"

    Beedrill's sharp stinger-arms shined as it flew head-on towards the fast-approaching Alakazam. Twineedle met Fire Punch, and the force of the two attacks caused an explosion. When the smoke cleared, Alakazam was down, Beedrill severly weakened.

    "Hahah! Great work, Beedrill!"

    "That was something....." Rich mumbled as he recalled Alakazam. "Unfortunately for you, Biden, this is where the child's play stops. Go, Tyranitar!"

    "Pssssh. You think the child's play even started? You're foolishly wrong."

    "We'll see how foolishly wrong I am! Blaziken, Sky Uppercut!"

    "Counter it, Smeargle!"

    Blaziken rushed Smeargle and swung its fist in an uppercut, but just as it hit Smeargle grabbed Blaziken. The punch hit Smeargle, but before it fainted Smeargle hit back with double the strength. Both Pokémon ended up fainting.

    "Hmph. Child's play? Return, Smeargle!"

    "That was good, I have to hand it to you. Blaziken, return! Go, Salamence!"

    "Get out there, Sonifone!"

    Biden sent out a strange Pokémon with an egg-shaped black and yellow body, a small mouth, and two red feet. It looked a lot like a microphone.

    "?! What is that??"

    Rich took out his P*DA and scanned the creature.

    "Sonifone. The microphone Pokémon," the P*DA said. "Type is Normal. Sonifone have an elaborate language of sounds they emit from the recievers on their bodies. Using these sounds it communicates with others. Surprisingly, the sounds also seem to be understood by other species of Pokémon as well."

    "An intriguing creature. Salamence, Flamethrower!"

    Turning away from Sonifone for now, Salamence loosed a jet of fire at Beedrill. The poisonous bee instantly fainted.

    "Beedrill! Aww...Beedrill, return. Last but not least.....Arbok! Sonifone, use Hyper Voice!"

    Sonifone emitted loud booming sounds from its body. This attack hit both of Rich's Pokémon fairly hard.

    "Tyranitar, let's finish this while we can! Earthquake!"

    Tyranitar stomped the ground, causing a powerful shock wave. Salamence flew over it, but it knocked out Arbok and did a small amount of damage to Sonifone.

    "Arbok, return! Buck up, Sonifone, it's all up to you now!"

    "Brick Break, Salamence!"

    Salamence flew up into the air and dive-bombed Sonifone with its claws extended. The hit nearly defeated the microphone Pokémon, but not quite.

    "Hyper Beam!"

    Sonifone focused, then blasted Salamence with a massive energy beam for a very powerful hit.

    "Tyranitar, use Brick Break to finish this up!"

    Tyranitar ran forward and punched Sonifone. Indeed, the attack caused it to faint.

    "This isn't right! Team Snagem is nothing like this!"

    //////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "Rich is the winner! Congratulations!"

    Once again, Rich took a bow to the cheering crowd before being led back to the waiting room.

    ------------------------------------------------------------------

    When he got back to the waiting room, Rich went right to the videophone in the corner and dialed a number. Phenac City's Nurse Joy soon appeared on the screen.

    "Nurse Joy, Phenac City Pokémon Center."

    "Hi, Nurse Joy. It's Rich."

    "Oh, Rich! How are you?"

    "I'm doing well. How is Anabel?"

    "She's just fine. We're still running some tests just to clear all our bases, but it seems so far like she only took a little bump to the head."

    "That's good to know. Can I talk to her?"

    "Sorry, no. She's resting right now."

    ".....okay. Can you at least let her know I called?"

    "Of course."

    "Thank you, Nurse Joy. Goodbye."

    Rich hung up the phone, and the screen turned off.

    "Anabel, be strong...." he thought to himself. "I'll be back before long....."
    Right after Rich hung up the phone, the attendant returned.

    "Are you ready for your semifinal match, Mr. Mistbloom?"

    "As ready as I'll ever be."

    Rich stood and followed the attendant to the arena..............

    --------------------------------------------------------------

    "This Snagem Colosseum knockout challenge is now in the semifinals! Ladies and gentlemen, your first two semifinalists!"

    Rich entered from the left gate, as usual. From the right came a man dressed very much like Biden, except visibly older and wearing large round glasses.

    "Semifinal match, Rich versus Wakin! Let the battle begin!"

    "So you're the one who beat Biden? You're good to get this far. But here is where it stops!"

    ////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Pkmn Trainer Rich ---vs.--- Team Snagem Wakin
    ///////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    [Wakin throws two Poké Balls, sending out a Vileplume and a Jumpluff]

    "Grass types. I should be able to handle this. Go, Blaziken and Alakazam!"

    "Hmph. Jumpluff, Sunny Day!"

    Jumpluff waved its arms, then blinding light filled the arena. Rich had to pull down his hat to keep the light from blinding him, but Wakin's glasses seemed to protect his eyes.

    "Don't fall for that, Alakazam! Fire Punch!"

    Alakazam rushed Jumpluff and tried to hit it with a fiery punch, but the light blinded it and made it miss.

    "Amazing.....I've never seen Sunny Day used defensively before.....Blaziken, Fire Blast!"

    Blaziken launched a fireball at Vileplume, but again, its aim was thrown off by the blinding light and it missed.

    "Heheheh. Vileplume, send him to beddy-bye with Sleep Powder!"

    Vileplume sprayed a green powder on Alakazam, making it fall asleep.

    "Jumpluff, Pay Day!"

    Again Jumpluff shook its arms, this time to launch a flurry of gold coins at Blaziken. The coins hit and caused some damage.

    "Vileplume, now is when the kid gloves come off! Solarbeam!"

    Vileplume fired a huge beam of green light at Alakazam, hitting it extremely hard.

    "Alakazam, wake up!"

    Alakazam heard Rich's call and woke up, but still seemed too drowsy to attack.

    "Blaziken, try a Flamethrower this time!"

    Blaziken loosed a stream of fire from its mouth at Vileplume. This time the attack hit, and because the flames were powered up by the sun, the flower Pokémon fainted.

    "So you felled my Vileplume. Not bad. Vileplume, return! Go, Illumise!"

    Wakin sent out an Illumise, which immediately activated the Aura Reader. It was the Shadow Illumise that had escaped earlier.

    "Jumpluff, use a Solarbeam!"

    Jumpluff's spores glowed green, then it fired a Solarbeam at Alakazam. This one defeated the psychic Pokémon.

    "Alakazam, return! Let's go, Ludicolo! Blaziken, Fire Punch!"

    Blaziken's fist became a ball of flame, then it rushed Jumpluff and hit it with the burning punch. Jumpluff took incredible damage and fainted.

    "Ooooh.....Jumpluff, return! No more of these games.....go, Tropican!"

    Wakin's last Pokémon was one Rich had never seen before.

    "Tropican? I've never seen that either......"

    Rich flipped open the P*DA and scanned Tropican.

    "Tropican, the tropical toucan Pokémon. Type is Grass/Fighting. Evolved form of Falleaf, which evolves from Levenen. Fights with sharp blades it makes from leaves. Wild Tropican are only found in the most remote jungles on tropical islands far out to sea. Despite losing its ability to fly long distances, it can still use the flight-based attacks learned early in its life."

    "Hmmmm, I like that Tropican, Wakin."

    "Heheheh, thanks. It took a lot of work to raise, but it was worth it."

    "Ludicolo, Hydro Pump!"

    Ludicolo fired a jet of water that hit Illumise with some force.

    "Alright, Illumise, Shadow Panic!"

    Illumise cast a pair of dark clouds toward Rich's team. When they hit, the clouds burst into dark stars, inflicting confusion on Blaziken and Ludicolo.

    "Tropican, Fury Cutter!"

    Tropican wielded a leaf like a sword, and slashed Ludicolo with it. The attack was super-effective but only did a small amount of damage.

    "Ludicolo, Hydro Pump again!"

    Ludicolo fired another water jet at Illumise, weakening it greatly.

    "Snag Ball, go!"

    Rich threw a Snag Ball at Illumise. The ball absorbed its target, fell to the floor, and rocked..........



    once...........



    twice..........



    .......then it burst open, releasing Illumise. The Snag had failed.

    "Hahahah! Snagging my Shadow Pokémon ain't easy, eh? Illumise, Shadow Rave!"

    Illumise launched spikes of shadow energy at Rich's team, doing a bit of damage to both Pokémon.

    "Tropican, Fury Cutter again!"

    Tropican slashed Ludicolo with its blade again, doing a bit more damage than the last time.

    "I'll try another Snag Ball! Go!"

    Rich threw another Snag Ball. After absorbing Illumise and falling to the floor it rocked once........




    twice..........





    and three times, then it pinged. This time the Snag succeeded.

    "Gah! My Shadow Pokémon!"

    "Heh. And now the battle is nearing an end! Blaziken, Fire Blast!"

    Blaziken overcame its confusion and hit Tropican with a very powerful fireball. Surprisingly, however, it did not faint.

    "Tropican, Fury Cutter! Let's go!"

    Once again Tropican slashed Ludicolo. This one nearly knocked it out, but not quite.

    "Ludicolo, finish it! Fire Punch!"

    Ludicolo, also overcoming its confusion, jumped at Tropican and hit it with a fiery punch. This time, Tropican fainted.

    "Maybe I should stick to putting my targets to sleep......."

    //////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "Ladies and gentlemen, your first finalist----RICH!!!!"

    As usual, Rich bowed to the cheering crowd before being led back to the waiting room.

    ---------------------------------------------------------------------

    As he was sitting in the waiting room, waiting for the next match, Rich had taken out a picture of Anabel and was staring at it.

    "Oh, Anabel.......I know you are in good hands with Justy and Nurse Joy, but you are still suffering.......I am suffering too, being away from you. I would gladly give up my challenge of Orre's Colosseums to be with you right now....but if this is what you wanted, me continuing to press on, I have to oblige....."

    "Uh....excuse me, Mr. Mistbloom?"

    Rich jumped in surprise and turned around. He hadn't noticed that the attendant had returned.

    "Oh, did you hear all of that?! I....I...."

    "It's alright, Mr. Mistbloom. I don't know the details, but I can understand how you feel. I came to tell you we have your next match."

    "Very well. I'm ready."

    "I should advise you, sir.....your next match is against the Juggernaut. Are you sure you are ready to face our champion, Mr. Mistbloom?"

    "I am. I am ready."

    "Very well....many challengers have backed out, but you wish to fight.....follow me, if that is your choice."

    Rich stood, and followed the attendant to the arena.

    -------------------------------------------------------------------

    "Ladies and gentlemen! It's the final battle of the Snagem Colosseum knockout challenge! Please welcome your first competitor........RICH!!!!"

    The left hand gate exploded in a cloud of dust, and Rich walked out to the delight of the crowd. He waved to them....but still, he only saw Anabel's face on each and every person.

    "Thank you! Thank.......thank you!"

    "And his opponent! Oh yeah, ladies and gentlemen, HE'S BACK! The champion of Snagem Colosseum has returned! Give it up for the one....the only......JUGGERNAUT!!!!!"

    The gate on the arena's right side exploded in a similar cloud of dust. Out from the cloud stepped a massive, muscular man dressed all in red armor. His identity was covered by the guise, topped by a red helmet covering his face except for the eyes and mouth.

    "Wahahah! Ahahahaha! Thank you! Looks like the Juggernaut's gonna have a nice little meal on this tiny challenger before him."

    "Don't count your chickens, big guy. I've got a will of iron going into this match, and I don't intend to lose."

    "Wahahahahah! You think you're going to beat ME? Come on, boy. Don't you know who I am? I'm the Juggernaut Bitch! I rule this Colosseum!"

    "It's your muscles against my determination to win for my beloved. Bring it on!"

    "Oh, I'll bring it! Don't feel bad if your Pokémon don't make it out alive!"

    "Final battle! Rich vs. Juggernaut! BEGIN!!!!!"

    //////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Pkmn Trainer Rich ---vs.--- Colosseum King Juggernaut
    //////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    [Juggernaut steps forward, pounds his chest, and roars loudly. He then throws two Poké Balls, sending out the Shadow Haunter and a Poliwrath]

    "Alakazam and Tyranitar! Let's go! Alakazam, Psychic!"

    "Wahahaha! Endure it!"

    Alakazam used its psychic power to hit Poliwrath, but Poliwrath had already braced itself to endure the hit.

    "Haunter! Shadow Half!"

    Haunter cast a blade of shadow energy that hit all four Pokémon including itself. The energy of Haunter, Tyranitar and Alakazam was halved but Poliwrath did not seem hurt.

    "And now, Poliwrath, teach him what happens when you mess with the Juggernaut! SURF!"

    Poliwrath created a massive wave of water and crashed it down on Rich's team. Both Pokémon fainted.

    "Wahahahahahaha! Come on, I warned you! After all, I'm the Juggernaut, bitch!"

    "Ah....wha......grrr......return, you guys. I can't fall for that kind of trick again. Go, Milotic and Ludicolo! Ludicolo, use your Surf!"

    As soon as it appeared, Ludicolo created its own giant wave and hit Juggernaut's team with it. Poliwrath, extremely weakened, fainted while Haunter took a bit of damage.

    "What's this? One of the Juggernaut's Pokémon is down! The kid's tough after all! Return, Poliwrath. Go, Scizor!"

    Juggernaut threw the Poké Ball and in a flash of light, a shiny green Scizor appeared.

    "Whoa! A shiny Scizor, what a catch! But that's not the only catch about to happen. Snag Ball, go!"

    Rich threw a Snag Ball at the Haunter. The ball absorbed its target and fell to the floor, then began rocking. It rocked once......



    ......twice.......





    and three times. Rich had finally Snagged Haunter.

    "Well, that Pokémon wasn't mine anyway. Go, Skarmory! Scizor, use Swords Dance!"

    Scizor waved its claws and spun around, performing a mystical dance that greatly raised its strength.

    "Skarmory, attack! Aerial Ace!"

    Skarmory flew up into the air and dive-bombed Ludicolo. Ludicolo took very high damage, nearly fainting.

    "Ludicolo, fight back with Thunderpunch!"

    Ludicolo's fist crackled with electricity and it rushed at Skarmory---but the impact of Skarmory's Aerial Ace had knocked it senseless, making it miss.

    "Grrahhh!!!! Milotic, Hydro Pump!"

    Milotic made up for Ludicolo's bad aim by blasting Skarmory with a jet of water, hitting the iron bird hard.

    "Let's end these games, Scizor. SILVER WIND!!!!!"

    Scizor flapped its wings rapidly, kicking up a cloud of shiny powder at Ludicolo. The super-effective attack instantly knocked Rich's Pokémon out.

    "NO! Ludicolo.......return......"

    "Wahaha! Juggernaut's gonna show you the real meaning of pain now, kid! Skarmory, finish this up for good! Take all your power and put it into one big HYPER BEAM!!!!!!"

    "NO!"

    Rich screamed, but could only watch in horror as Skarmory fired the most massive red energy beam possible at his Milotic. The beam hit Milotic and exploded, and when the dust cleared Milotic was long since fainted. Rich recalled it and fell to his knees.

    "Mi....Milotic....Anabel.....I've......failed..... ."

    "Wahahahahhahahaha!!!!!! See, kid? That's what you get! These Pokémon are as hard as my suit of taffy, and that's because I'm the Juggernaut Bitch!"

    //////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "Juggernaut wins the tournament and keeps his title! Congratulations!"

    As Juggernaut flexed his muscles to show off to the crowd, Rich left silently and in shame.

    --------------------------------------------------------------------

    When Rich got outside the Colosseum, it was dark. Night had fallen on Eclo Canyon, and a cold wind was blowing.

    "I've failed my Pokémon, and my Anabel too.....I can never go back to Phenac City like this....."

    Rich walked for quite a while. When he snapped to attention and noticed his location, he was halfway between the Colosseum and the other old building he had seen.

    "All alone....a failure like me should be that way. ......NO! No, I won't let this get to me! This has to make my love for Anabel and my determination to win even stronger! Come out, everyone!"

    Rich opened all six of his Poké Balls, releasing Milotic, Salamence, Ludicolo, Blaziken, Tyranitar and Alakazam.

    "You guys did very well in the Colosseum today. We're going to camp outside tonight, and tomorrow we will train like we've never trained before so we can go back there and WIN!"

    All of Rich's Pokémon cried out in support of their trainer and friend.




    After a long and arduous challenge, Rich lost at the hands of the infamous Juggernaut. His goal clearer than ever, he now sets out to get stronger and defeat the mysterious man. Can he do it? Stay tuned!




    END of CHAPTER FIVE

  9. #9
    追放されたバカ Nando's Avatar
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    CHAPTER SIX: The Canyon Conundrum



    A brilliant sunrise greeted Eclo Canyon the morning after Rich's crushing defeat at the Snagem Colosseum. The fiery orb rose over the horizon, casting a beautiful red glow into the sky.

    Meanwhile, Rich and his Pokémon were already up and about. Riding Salamence, he was flying low through the Canyon to help train the dragon in agility. They flew for quite a while, Salamence twisting and flipping to perfectly trace the jagged outline of the canyon. Finally, they reached what appeared to be the end of the canyon, a huge wall of rocks blocking any further progress.

    "Salamence, stop here."

    Salamence slowed and landed gently. Rich jumped off its back and recalled it to its Poké Ball.

    "You take a rest now, Salamence. We'll train some more later. For now, everyone, come out!"

    Rich popped open the other five Poké Balls, and Milotic, Blaziken, Alakazam, Ludicolo, and Tyranitar appeaed before him.

    "Are you guys ready to train for our next shot at Juggernaut?" The Pokémon responded positively, so Rich continued. "Good. You all will never know just how much this means to me, that you're all willing to follow me back into another fight with that brute. Thank you. Everyone, turn around. See that wall of rock? Our first training will be to simply knock it out. Milotic, Hydro Pump! Tyranitar, Hyper Beam! Alakazam, Psychic! Ludicolo, Ice Beam! Blaziken, Fire Blast!"

    All the Pokémon charged up, then fired their attacks at the same spot on the rock wall. Just before the attacks hit, however, an energized blade of air---an Air Cutter attack---crashed down and blocked them.

    "Yo, kid! What do you think you're doing?!"

    A Skarmory landed behind Rich, and its trainer jumped off its back. He was a large man, very muscular and dressed in tight black pants and a red vest that was left open to show off his gigantic chest muscles. The man's most distinctive feature, however, were his long, jagged eyebrows and moustache.

    Rich waved his hand to clear the smoke from the explosion, but did not turn right away.

    "All this dust.........listen, I'm busy here! Leave me........." Rich turned around, and locked eyes with the man. "....uh.....uh..........."

    The man seemed almost as surprised as Rich was.

    "Rich?! Rich, is that you?!!"

    "Gonzap, the leader of Team Snagem! You've come to pay me my comeuppance for leaving you and Cipher way back when, haven't you?! Salamence, atta----"

    "Oh, no! Not at all!" Gonzap chuckled. "I know I used to have orders from Cipher's old boss Evice to take you out on sight, but those days are long past. We're no longer part of Cipher or Enigma Shadow. In fact, we're not criminals at all anymore. We're just a band of trainers who have dedicated ourselves to our Pokémon and battling."

    "I guess that makes sense. But would you care to fill me in on why I can't train here?"

    "There would be a disaster if that rock wall was destroyed. The hardened magma that rings the crater where Mt. Battle used to be would break off, then the magma could flood out all of Eclo Canyon---killing us and everyone at the Colosseum."

    "Whoa! That's enough reason for me! Milotic, Alakazam, Tyranitar, Blaziken, Ludicolo.....hold off. Now, Gonzap....I'd call you old friend, but I'm not sure it applies."

    "Hohoho! Of course it does. Now that neither of us is involved in that Cipher crap anymore, nothing's stopping us from being friends."

    "Good, then. Please explain how you got the Colosseum and all?"

    "It's quite a story. After Michael took down Cipher's Grand Master Greevil, we had planned to make a comeback and establish Team Snagem as the ruling gang in Orre once again. Right before our plan was to go forward, Sherles and the biggest group of those cutie Officer Jennys found our hideout. Naturally we didn't want to go to jail, so we negotiated a way out. They helped us build the Colosseum, and wouldn't put us in jail. However, we can't leave Eclo Canyon, so we've become dedicated to our training."

    "Hm. That's quite a story, Gonzap."

    "Indeed it is. What brought you all the way out here, anyway?"

    "Sigh.....it's such a long story. My wife and I came here on vacation but, as I'm sure you know by now, Enigma Shadow returned at the same time."

    "Your wife? What's her name?"

    "Anabel. Here's a picture of her."

    Rich took a picture of himself and Anabel from his pocket and showed it to Gonzap.

    "She's very cute. You caught yourself a good one, hahah!"

    "Thank you."

    "So where is she now? Why isn't she with you?"

    "There was an accident in Phenac City. She fell and hit her head in the Pre Gym, and is now in the hospital there. I came here with the goal of winning at the Colosseum for her and bringing back the Snagem Emblem, but I lost to the Juggernaut last night."

    "Yeah, I know what you mean. Juggernaut's real tough. Tell ya what, come with me back to the old Team Snagem base. We'll have a battle there, so you can toughen up for Juggernaut. Agreeable?"

    "Sure, let's do it! You guys up for it?"

    Rich's Pokémon all cried out in approval. He nodded and recalled them, then sent out Salamence and got on its back. Gonzap got on his Skarmory's back, and together the two of them flew back through the canyon towards Team Snagem's base.

    ---------------------------------------------------------------------

    The Snagem base was an old, run-down steel building leaned up against the wall of the canyon. Gonzap and Rich recalled their Pokémon and went inside, where there was a round area ringed by old metal scraps. The Snagem leader pointed Rich to a spot in the ring, then he took a spot opposite.

    "Yo, Agrev! Get yourself down here!"

    A Team Snagem member rushed down the nearby staircase and faced Gonzap.

    "Yes, sir, Master Gonzap! What is it?"

    "Rich and I are going to have a battle. I want you to referee."

    "Alright then, Gonzap. Have you agreed on a number of Pokémon?"

    "I think we should use all six," Rich suggested. "If this is to be a training battle, I really think it can be nothing else."

    "Any objections to that, Gonzap?"

    "None whatsoever."

    "Good! In that case, the Double Battle between Rich and Gonzap, the leader of Team Snagem, will now begin! Each trainer will use six Pokémon and the match ends when all six have fainted! Ready, and......GO!"

    ////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Pkmn Trainer Rich ---vs.--- Snagem Head Gonzap
    ////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    [Gonzap steps forward, punches the air several times, then leaps up with an uppercut. He then throws two Poké Balls, sending out a Venusaur and a Slaking]

    "Venusaur and Slaking..........let's get going, Blaziken and Tyranitar! Tyranitar, Flamethrower!"

    Tyranitar took a deep breath to draw in air, then exhaled a stream of fire at Venusaur. The Pokémon took a hard hit.

    "Venusaur, attack with Frenzy Plant!"

    Venusaur sent energy into the ground, then several huge roots dug up and whipped Tyranitar with amazing force. Tyranitar did not faint, but it came close.

    "Blaziken, Sky Uppercut!"

    Blaziken rushed forth and hit Slaking with a powerful uppercut.

    "Roar!"

    Slaking turned to Venusaur, and roared incredibly loudly. Venusaur turned into energy and returned to its Poké Ball, then another ball burst open and a Blastoise appeared.

    "Ah HA! I see what you're up to. Tyranitar, Thunder!"

    Tyranitar absorbed power, then loosed it into the sky in the form of several lightning bolts. The bolts then crashed down onto Blastoise and caused severe damage.

    "It doesn't matter, because if I take your Pokémon down first, you know what happens! Blastoise, help Slaking by getting rid of Blaziken! Hydro Cannon!"

    Two water cannons popped out of Blastoise's shell, then it fired massive blasts of water at Blaziken. The hit instantly knocked out the Pokémon.

    "Alright, then. Blaziken, return! Go, Ludicolo! Use Giga Drain!"

    Ludicolo jumped onto Blastoise and glowed green, draining away its remaining energy and making it faint.

    "Not bad, Rich, not bad at all. Return, Blastoise! Next up it will be......Exploud, go! Slaking, Hyper Beam!"

    Slaking yawned, then fired a massive red energy beam at Tyranitar. Tyranitar's Rock type blocked the full impact, but the attack was still strong enough to knock Tyranitar out.

    "Return, Tyranitar! Go, Milotic! Ludicolo, use Dynamicpunch!"

    Ludicolo's fists glowed bright red as it hit Exploud with a superbly strong punch.

    "Exploud, use Roar on Slaking!"

    Exploud turned and roared at Slaking, sending the ape Pokémon back to its Poké Ball. Another ball burst open, and Venusaur reappeared.

    "Milotic, Ice Beam! Let's go!"

    Milotic hit Venusaur with a freezing beam of ice. Because it was already weakened from Tyranitar's Flamethrower, Venusaur fainted.

    "Arrrgghh! My luck turned on me there! Venusaur, return. Skarmory, go!"

    "Ludicolo, Surf!"

    Ludicolo created a huge wave of water and crashed it down on Gonzap's team. Both Exploud and his newly-deployed Skarmory took some damage.

    "Exploud! Hyper Voice!"

    Exploud took a deep breath.......then blasted from its mouth and the tubes ringing its head the most excruciating, eardrum-piercing sound imaginable. Ludicolo and Milotic were hit quite hard by the attack, and even Rich had to hold his ears. Gonzap and Skarmory didn't seem affected at all, though.

    Finally, the blast stopped and Rich took his hands off his ears.

    "Geez, Gonzap. How do you do that and not be affected?"

    "I guess after a while you get used to it."

    "I know I wouldn't be able to. Milotic, attack Exploud with Hydro Pump!"

    Milotic took aim, then attacked Exploud with a pressurized jet of water. Exploud was nearly knocked out, but again, not quite.

    "How frustrating. Ludicolo, use Surf to finish off Exploud!"

    Ludicolo created another huge wave and crashed it down onto Gonzap's team. Exploud fainted while Skarmory was weakened a bit more.

    "I haven't had a battle this tough in a long, long time! Return, Exploud. Come on, Slaking, let's go! Skarmory, use Aerial Manuvers!"

    Skarmory flew up into the air a bit, and began to glow with a blue shine as it powered up.

    "Slaking, Aerial Ace!"

    Slaking stood up, towering over Rich's Pokémon. It then took a swipe at Ludicolo, hitting it hard with super-effective damage and nearly making it faint.

    "Milotic, keep fighting! Use Surf!"

    Milotic crashed yet another giant wave onto Gonzap's team, slightly injuring Slaking but doing more damage to Skarmory.

    "Ludicolo, finish off that Skarmory NOW! Fire Punch!"

    Ludicolo's fists became fiery, then it jumped from Milotic's head towards Skarmory and hit it with the burning punch. It was a critical hit, and Skarmory fainted.

    "Skarmory, my first Pokémon! Return.....go, Charizard! Use Blast Burn now!"

    Charizard loosed a fireball at Ludicolo. When it hit, the fireball exploded into a massive burst of flames that knocked out Ludicolo.

    "Ludicolo, return! Go, Alakazam! Use Psychic on Slaking now!"

    Alakazam's eyes glowed, then a blue aura surrounded Slaking. It was lifted into the air by Alakazam's psychic powers, then dropped hard. This was also a critical hit, and it caused extremely high damage to Slaking.

    "SURF!"

    Another wave attack from Milotic defeated both Charizard, whose Fire type was weak to the water attack, and Slaking as well.

    "Gwwwwoooooohh!!! The head of Team Snagem loses?"

    ////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "The battle is over!" Agrev announced. "The winner is Rich!"

    "Well! I must say, Rich, that was quite the rigorous experience. I don't think you even needed training to take down Juggernaut, if you want my honest opinion."

    "Really? Then tell me what it was that happened."

    "Your mind wasn't focused. Remember what you said about Anabel being in the hospital back in Phenac? You were rightfully worried about her, but you let your mind wander and Juggernaut took advantage of that. If you focus like you did against me, you can beat him with no trouble."

    "I guess........thank you, Gonzap. I'll be on my way now."

    "Don't leave yet. Agrev!"

    "Yes, sir!"

    "Get the members of Team Snagem together. I'm calling a conference."

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------

    About an hour later, all the members of Team Snagem were outside the base sitting on folding metal chairs. A stage had been set up with the scraps of metal lying around in the hideout, and Gonzap was standing behind a steel podium. Rich, meanwhile, was seated in another folding chair off to the side.

    "This special meeting of the honorable council of Team Snagem is now called to order! Tonight we have only one subject to speak of. During the day today, I had a battle with a trainer who is in the area to win at our Colosseum. Not only that, I lost this battle."

    The crowd became angry and a bit rowdy. Wakin stood up with a look of rage on his face.

    "Let us at the fool, Gonzap! We'll teach him what happens when he messes with Team Snagem!"

    "Sit down, Wakin. I am not worried about losing this match, nor am I angry at who I lost to. I know that Biden and Wakin already know this person. Please, give a warm Team Snagem welcome to Rich Mistbloom!"

    Gonzap beckoned Rich over to the podium from his seat while the crowd settled down and applauded. They all knew Rich had beaten Biden and Wakin, and they held great respect for anyone who could defeat Gonzap.

    "Rich was training with me today because he wants to win against the champion of our Colosseum, the Juggernaut. He doesn't lack skill or strength, though, what happened is that he felt alone against Juggernaut's brutal strength, snapping under the pressure and not being able to battle. That is why, Rich, I have decided that Team Snagem will back your efforts in the Colosseum one hundred percent. When you're ready to make another challenge, know that we're behind you and are rooting for you."

    "Thank you, thank you very much, Gonzap! Really, it does mean a lot......and I'm sure Anabel would be pleased too if she were here."

    "That isn't all. I also want to award you a special prize for defeating me. I am naming you an honorary elite member of the new Team Snagem, a title that signifies your standing as one of the strongest trainers in Eclo Canyon."

    "Thank you, again! I.........tomorrow I will make my challenge, and tomorrow I'll beat Juggernaut once and for all."

    ---------------------------------------------------------------------

    Later that night, Rich was sitting at a campfire with Salamence and Milotic out.

    "We've got a big day ahead of us tomorrow, you guys. Do you think you can do it?"

    "Salalaaaaaa, mence...."

    "Miloooooooooooooo."

    "You're right. I've got to buck up and go for that title like there's nothing else in the world. I'll bring you back that emblem this time, Anabel, you can count on that..."

    Rich looked up at the clear sky, marveling at the beauty of the stars and the moon.




    Training with Team Snagem's leader, Gonzap, was just what Rich needed following his loss to Juggernaut. After beating Gonzap in a battle, Rich finally realized that he lost in the Colosseum because he couldn't focus on his battles. Now with his goal even clearer and more determined than ever to win, can he take down Juggernaut this time? Stay tuned!



    END of CHAPTER SIX

  10. #10
    追放されたバカ Nando's Avatar
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    CHAPTER SEVEN: Juggernaut's Snagem Showdown


    Rich and his Pokémon had had a good night's rest, and the day after training with Gonzap, they were ready to go for the Snagem Colosseum challenge again. With Anabel in his heart and battles on his mind, Rich marched through the Colosseum's front door and right up to the registration counter.

    "Hello! Welcome to Snagem......Mr. Mistbloom? Why are you here?"

    "I want to enter again."

    "I'm afraid I cannot allow that. If you faced Juggernaut again, he'd likely kill your Pokémon for your bothering him. This is for the good of your Pokémon, sir, get out of here while you still can."

    Rich slammed his hand down on the desk.

    "I'm entering again, and that's that! I made a promise that I would win here for my beloved wife, and over my dead body will some musclehead like Juggernaut stop me!"

    "I am very sorry, Mr. Mistbloom. If I allowed you to enter and anything happened to your Pokémon, Snagem Colosseum would lose its license to operate. Please, just lea----"

    "Stop! Let him in."

    Gonzap, with Biden and Wakin in tow, had entered behind Rich.

    "M-Mister Gonzap, sir!"

    "Wakin, you and Biden go off and get ready for your battles. I can deal with this."

    Wakin and Biden nodded, then jumped over the rail and entered the Colosseum.

    "What is this about not letting Rich enter?"

    "Mister Gonzap, sir, I know what Juggernaut's capable of. If he faces Rich again, he will become angry and may kill Rich's Pokémon. And if that happened, we'd lose our license to operate."

    "That's not going to happen. Rich lost the last time because his mind wasn't focused. This time, I can vouch that he's one hundred and ten percent ready for Juggernaut. Let him in."

    "If you wish, Mister Gonzap. Mr. Mistbloom, please enter through here."

    "Thank you, Gonzap."

    "Think nothing of it. Remember, we've supporting you!"

    After shaking hands with Gonzap, Rich followed the attendant to the waiting room. She then left. After a moment, Rich released all six of his Pokémon.

    "You guys all ready for this? We're going to face a tough challenge now, but I believe in all of you."

    Another attendant came into the room.

    "Mr. Mistbloom, your first match is ready."

    "Thank you. Everyone, return!"

    Rich recalled his Pokémon then followed the attendant to the arena.

    ---------------------------------------------------------------------

    "Ladies and gentlemen!" the announcer called out. It's time for another knockout challenge at the Snagem Colosseum! Now entering the arena are the first two competitors!"

    Rich entered from the left hand gate, and from the right came Joseph, the Eevee trainer.

    "Round one, Rich versus Joseph! Let the battle begin!"

    "Hello, again! I didn't expect to see you here again so soon. My Eevees are as strong as ever, so let's battle again!"

    //////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Pkmn Trainer Rich ---vs.--- Rider Joseph
    //////////////////////////////////////////////////

    [Joseph throws two Poké Balls, sending out Eevee.....and an Espeon]

    "Oh, Espeon? So you've changed things up a bit. Go, Tyranitar and Milotic!"

    "Espeon, Calm Mind!"

    Espeon shut its eyes and focused its mind. It glowed green as it powered up.

    "Surf, Milotic!"

    Milotic created a massive wave of water and crashed it down on Joseph's team, hitting Eevee harder than Espeon.

    "Tyranitar, use Rock Slide!"

    Tyranitar drilled the ground with its claw, kicking up rocks at Joseph's team. Eevee was knocked out while Espeon took quite a hit.

    "Hmm, you got Eevee down quickly this time. Eevee, return! Go, Umbreon! Attack with Psychic, Espeon!"

    Espeon's eyes glowed as it used psychic power to lift Milotic into the air and crash it down. Milotic was hit fairly hard.

    "Use another Surf!"

    Milotic crashed another wave down on Joseph's team, this time hitting both of the Pokémon with equal force.

    "Use Crunch to finish Espeon off, Tyranitar!"

    The large green Pokémon rushed forward and crunched on Espeon with its sharp fangs. Indeed, this was the blow that defeated Espeon.

    "This is turning out even worse than last time. Espeon, return! It's all up to you now, so go Alumineon!"

    Joseph's final Pokémon was Alumineon, a Steel type that looked like an Espeon with iron armor. Even though Rich already knew what it was (Anabel's father, Ein, was the one who created it) he scanned it with the P*DA anyway.

    "Alumineon, the steel plate Pokémon. Evolves from Eevee under the influence of a Metal Coat. Alumineon are rarely seen in the wild, and few trainers own them. Though their bodies are mostly comprised of metal, they have powerful abilities with electricity as well. This species hunts by shocking and stunning its prey with electricity, so it is easier to capture."

    "So you know Alumineon already? No big deal. Umbreon, Bite!"

    Umbreon jumped forth and bit Milotic. Despite the attack's fairly high strength, Milotic didn't seem affected much.

    "Milotic, Hydro Pump on Alumineon!"

    Milotic took aim and hit Alumineon with a pressurized blast of water, doing quite a bit of damage.

    "Tyranitar, follow that with a Brick Break to Umbreon!"

    Umbreon tried to dodge, but Tyranitar still managed to hit it with a powerful, super-effective punch.

    "Alumineon, Iron Tail! Let's go!"

    Alumineon's tail glowed with a metallic shine, then it rushed forward and bashed the tail into Tyranitar. This was a super-effective hit.

    "Umbreon, use Faint Attack!"

    The black cat-like Pokémon faded into the shadows, drew close to Milotic, then reappeared and slammed into it. However, once again this attack did not do much.

    "Milotic, wanna go for the win?"

    "Milllllloooo!"

    "Well said, old friend. Hydro Pump!"

    Milotic hit Alumineon with another blast of water, taking it down.

    "Return, Alumineon......."

    "Tyranitar, use Brick Break to finish this up!"

    Tyranitar jumped forward with surprising speed and nailed Umbreon with another punch. This finished off Umbreon.

    "My Eevees!! They lost again!"

    /////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "Rich is the winner! Congratulations!"

    As he was accustomed to by this point, Rich bowed to the cheering crowd then followed the attendant back to the waiting room.

    --------------------------------------------------------------------

    After a while, the attendant returned for Rich. No words were spoken, he just got up and followed her back to the arena.

    ---------------------------------------------------------------------

    "Round one was exciting, but what will round two bring? Please welcome our next competitors!"

    Rich entered from his gate. Facing him was a familiar face--Biden from Team Snagem.

    "Rich versus Biden! Let the battle begin!"

    "You beat me last time, but Team Snagem will last forever! I'll prove my point by winning this match!"

    ///////////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Pkmn Trainer Rich ---vs.--- Team Snagem Biden
    ///////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    [Biden throws two Poké Balls, sending out Sonifone and a Tropius]

    "Let's make this a great match. Go, Blaziken and Salamence! Salamence, attack with Fire Blast!"

    Salamence loosed a fireball that was aimed at Tropius, but the Grass and Flying type managed to dodge it.

    "Hah! Our last battle will be nothing compared to this! Tropius, Aerial Ace!"

    Tropius flapped its broad leaves to fly up a bit, then it dive-bombed Blaziken for extremely high damage.

    "Blaziken, fight back! Flamethrower!"

    Blaziken answered right back by blasting Tropius with powerful flames.

    "Not so fast. Sonifone, take out that Blaziken! Use Amplify!"

    Tropius glowed red, then Sonifone did as well. Sonifone then sent a blast of energy at Blaziken, knocking it out.

    "What? What was that attack?"

    Suddenly, the P*DA activated by itself.

    "Amplify. An attack of the Normal type. Only used in Double Battles. Takes the amount the partner's health has been decreased by, doubles it, and inflicts that amount on the target."

    "Dirty trick......"

    "Heheheh. We might be legit now, but deep down, we still have the blood of the old Team Snagem in our veins. We just exercise our sneakiness in battles now!"

    "Hmph, I'll still win. Return, Blaziken! Go, Milotic! Salamence, Brick Break!"

    Salamence smashed Sonifone with its claws, inflicting very high damage.
    "Milotic, Ice Beam!"

    Milotic fired a beam of solid ice at Tropius. It hit the Grass and Flying type, and instantly KO'd it.

    "Ahhh! Tropius, return! Go, Beedrill! Sonifone, attack with Hyper Voice!"

    Sonifone focused, then attacked with a blast of sound. Both Salamence and Milotic were hit fairly hard.

    "Salamence! Use Flamethrower!"

    "Endure!"

    Salamence loosed a stream of fire from its mouth at Beedrill. Beedrill was hit with incredible force, but it endured the hit.

    "Now that we survived that, Beedrill, use Sludge Bomb!"

    From its stinger Beedrill fired a large lump of purple sludge, hitting and poisoning Milotic.

    "Milotic, don't put up with that! Surf!"

    Milotic created and crashed down a huge wave of water, knocking out Sonifone and doing quite a bit of damage to Beedrill.

    "Bah! I'm not finished yet! Return, Sonifone. Go, Smeargle! Extremespeed!"

    Smeargle spun its tail around like a whip, then tackled Milotic with incredible speed. Much to Biden's surprise, however, it didn't seem to do much.

    "What? That attack's stronger than that!"

    "You've forgotten, Milotic's Marvel Scale power. It's poisoned, so its ability to withstand physical blows becomes much higher. Now show him what we're capable of, Salamence! Use Bric-----"

    Salamence suddenly flew up into the air---disobeying Rich by not using Brick Break---glowed bright green, then dive-bombed Smeargle with supersonic speed. This mystery attack did catastrophic damage to Smeargle and knocked it out, but Salamence seemed tired as it landed.

    "What was......what just happened?"

    "Return, Smeargle! Clearly your Salamence just learned a new attack, but that's not like anything I've seen before!"

    Rich opened his P*DA, hoping to find the answer.

    "Meteoric Swarm, an attack of the Dragon type. Allows an extremely powerful, full strength attack, but tires out the user after use."

    "Meteoric Swarm......good job, Salamence! Let's finish this up, Milotic. Dragonbreath!"

    Milotic breathed a cloud of foul-smelling air onto Beedrill, knocking out the extremely weakened Bug and Poison type.

    "Ayieeeeh! Team Snagem's not what it used to be~"

    --------------------------------------------------------------------

    "Rich is the winner of the match! Congratulations!"

    Rich gave his customary bow to the audience before leaving the arena.....ahead of the attendant, nonetheless.

    ---------------------------------------------------------------------

    It wasn't long before the attendant returned.

    "Mr. Mistbloom, the semifinals await."

    Rich looked up---he had been musing over the picture of Anabel again---and followed the attendant without a word.

    ----------------------------------------------------------------------

    "The semifinals of the Snagem Colosseum knockout challenge will now begin! Ladies and gentlemen, your first two semifinalists!"

    Rich entered the arena and found he recognized his next opponent as well---it was Gonzap's right-hand man, Wakin.

    "Semifinal match! Rich versus Wakin! Let the battle begin!"

    "I don't know how you managed to beat Gonzap. That doesn't matter now though....it's you and me!"

    ///////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Pkmn Trainer Rich ---vs.--- Team Snagem Wakin
    ///////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    [Wakin throws two Poké Balls, sending out Tropican and Vileplume]

    "Ah, two familiar faces. Let's get going, Salamence and Blaziken!"

    "Tropican! Wing Attack!"

    Tropican grew two large leaves from its back, then flew forward and whipped Blaziken with them for a strong hit.

    "Salamence, defend us! Use Flamethrower!"

    Salamence loosed a jet of fire from its mouth at Vileplume. It hit and did high damage.

    "Blaziken, use Fire Blast to get rid of Vileplume NOW!"

    Blaziken did so, launching a fireball at Vileplume. As soon as it hit, Vileplume fainted.

    "This isn't going well. Vileplume, return! Go, Jumpluff! Sunny Day!"

    Jumpluff waved its arms, summoning the bright light.

    "Now, Tropican.......Wing Attack again!"

    Tropican whipped Blaziken with its wing-like leaves again, nearly knocking it out.

    "Our resolve is stronger than it was last time. Winning will not be easy. Salamence, Flamethrower!"

    Powered up by the sunlight, Salamence's fiery attack hit Jumpluff extremely hard.

    "Blaziken, we've got a rhythm. Let's keep it going with Fire Punch!"

    Blaziken's claw turned into a fireball, then it delivered a knockout blow to Jumpluff.

    "Jumpluff, no! Return.........let's go, Sceptile! Attack with Aerial Ace!"

    Sceptile leaped up and swiped at Blaziken, finishing it off.

    "Return, Blaziken! Go, Alakazam!"

    "Wing Attack!"

    Tropican used another Wing Attack, this one on Alakazam for high damage.

    "Let's begin to finish this up, Salamence. Fire Blast!"

    Salamence launched a fireball from its maw at Sceptile. It was a critical hit, and Sceptile fainted.

    "NO!!!! Sceptile, return.....!"

    "Psychic, Alakazam!"

    Alakazam's eyes glowed blue as it lifted Tropican into the air and slammed it down. This was a super-effective hit.

    "Tropican, use Solarbeam!"

    From its mouth, Tropican launched a beam of green light at Alakazam to defeat it.

    "Alright, that's fine. Alakazam, return! Go, Milotic! Salamence, finish this for good! FLAMETHROWER!"

    Salamence blasted Tropican with intense flames. When they faded, it was down.

    "No! No! No! NO!!!! I guess I really am nothing next to Gonzap. But watch out---Juggernaut's next!"

    //////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "Rich is heading to the finals! Congratulations!"

    Something was different this time. Rich didn't take his usual bow---he simply walked out of the arena and back to the waiting room.

    -------------------------------------------------------------

    As soon as he got back to the waiting room, Rich went right to the videophone and dialed a number. Nurse Joy soon appeared on the screen.

    "Nurse Joy, Phenac Pokémon Center."

    "Nurse Joy, it's Rich."

    "Oh, hi Rich! I'm glad you called, actually. Anabel's alright, we ran all the tests on her and things are just fine. Some of the results surprised us, but I'm sure you'll find out yourself. So what did you call about?"

    "I just wanted to see her, see if I could talk to her."

    "Let me check.......hmmm......yes, we can do that."

    After a moment, Anabel appeared on the screen. She was still in the hospital bed but looked much more lively than when Rich had left.

    "Rich! I'm so happy to see you!"

    "I'm happy to see you, too. How are you feeling?"

    "I've never felt better. Nurse Joy sure worked wonders, that's for sure, but noone's worked more wonders on me than you."

    "Heheheh. I've been told I have that effect on people."

    "So will I be able to see you again soon?"

    "Hopefully. I lost my first match against Juggernaut, but I'm about to face him again. I'm going to win this time, for you......"

    "Good. Good luck, and remember that I love you always...."

    "You too......"

    Rich hung up, and the image vanished. Right at that moment, the attendant returned.

    "Mr. Mistbloom, before I take you to face Juggernaut, I must say you are the bravest trainer I've ever seen. Are you prepared to face his strength again?"

    "I'm more ready than ever. Bring him on!"

    Rich followed the attendant to the fateful match......

    -----------------------------------------------------------------

    "Ladies and gentlemen, the final match is at hand! Now entering the arena for his grudge match with the champ......from Phenac City, RIIIIIIIIIIIIIICH!!!!!"

    A cloud of dust exploded in front of the left-hand gate and Rich confidently entered.

    "And now........the champ! His crushing power destroyed Rich last time, but how will fate turn in this match? We're about to find out! Here he comes! The one......the only.......JUGGERNAUT!!!!!!"

    The right hand gate exploded in a cloud of dust, and out from the cloud stepped Juggernaut---muscular and clad in his red armor as always.

    "Thank you! I guess this little kid doesn't remember who I am!"

    "I'm not a little kid, and I remember you. And I will take you down this time!"

    "Hahahahah! You, take ME down? Don't you know who I am? You must not remember who I am. I'm the Juggernaut Bitch!"

    "I said I remembered you. Now prepare to lose!"

    "Enough of your smarting off to me! I'm going to crush you with my Pokémon, because I'm the freakin' Juggernaut, bitch!"

    "FINAL MATCH! Rich vs. Juggernaut! Let the battle begin!"

    //////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Pkmn Trainer Rich ---vs.--- Colosseum King Juggernaut
    //////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    [Juggernaut steps forward, beats his chest, and roars loudly. He then sends out Poliwrath and a black-and-red Pokémon that resembles a Sneasel]

    "What's that?! I don't think I've ever seen that!"

    Rich scanned the mystery Pokémon with the P*DA.

    "Weavile, the sharp claw Pokémon. Type is Dark/Ice. Evolved from Sneasel. Weavile live in packs in caves on snowy, remote peaks. They are vicious in hunting for food, their diet mainly comprised of arctic fish and birds. They were first bred in captivity by a mountain climber who caught one while climbing the world's tallest peak."

    "Nice catch. Unfortunately for you, you're going down! Go, Tyranitar and Blaziken!"

    "Weavile, Aerial Ace this fool!"

    Juggernaut's Weavile rushed forward at great speed and slashed Blaziken for high damage.

    "Answer right back with a Sky Uppercut!"

    Blaziken tried to uppercut Weavile, but Weavile was too fast and escaped.

    "Poliwrath, Hydro Pump!"

    From the center of the swirl on its stomach Poliwrath fired a jet of water that knocked out Blaziken.

    "Ahahaha! I'm the Juggernaut bitch, and my bitches got the power yours don't!"

    "That's what you think. Return, Blaziken! Go, Ludicolo!"

    "Silly bitch, you must not remember who I am. I'm the Juggernaut bitch! Weavile, Aerial Ace!"

    Weavile rushed forth and slashed Ludicolo, again a strong hit.

    "I'll show you who I am. Ludicolo, Giga Drain!"

    "ENDURE! Hahahah!"

    Ludicolo jumped onto Poliwrath and drained all but a small amount of its energy.

    "You can't KO me now because I have Endure, silly bitch!"

    "That's what you think. Tyranitar, Sandstorm!"

    Tyranitar called forward a sandstorm that blew over the arena, knocking out Poliwrath and inflicting light damage on Weavile and Ludicolo.

    "Hahah! Got you with my pimp Pokémon!"

    "Your weapons cannot harm me, silly bitch. Return, Poliwrath! Go, Scizor!"

    With a sparkle, Juggernaut's shiny Scizor entered the battle.

    "Brick Break! Comb yo' hair and eat that, bitch!"

    Weavile's claws glowed bright red, then it smashed Tyranitar with them---scoring a critical, knockout hit.

    "Tyranitar, return. Go, Milotic! Ludicolo, use Brick Break right back!"

    Ludicolo's fists glowed the same color that Weavile's claws had, then it hit the Dark and Ice type incredibly hard. Weavile fainted as a result.

    "I will not lose! I'm the Juggernaut bitch! Return, Weavile. Go, Skarmory! Scizor, Silver Wind!"

    Scizor flapped its wings, sending shiny powder all over Ludicolo---a super-effective hit that nearly defeated the Grass and Water type.

    "Enough of these games. You're being ruined NOW! Milotic, use Hydro Pump on the ground right in front of Scizor!"

    Milotic blasted a jet of water that hit the ground right in front of Scizor. The attack split when it hit the floor---some of it hit Scizor, but the rest smashed right into Juggernaut's face and knocked his helmet off. A familiar pair of jagged eyebrows and a jagged moustache appeared from underneath it.

    "Oh no! My head!"

    "GONZAP?!?! Juggernaut is Gonzap?!?!"

    "Hohoho, you exposed me! Now that I'm no longer the Juggernaut bitch, we can fight to the bitter end as equals! Let's do it, worthy foe!"

    "Indeed. Ludicolo, Fire Punch!"

    Ludicolo's fists now burned with fire, then it hit Scizor with a catastrophically powerful knockout blow.

    "Scizor, return! Skarmory, let's do this right! Drill Peck!"

    Skarmory flew up into the air and dive-bombed Ludicolo in a corkscrewing motion, knocking it out.

    "Return, Ludicolo. Now just my first Pokémon against your first Pokémon. Milotic, Hydro Pump!"

    Milotic fired another jet of water at Skarmory, but the attack missed.

    "Hohohohoho.......Swords Dance!"

    Skarmory flapped its wings rapidly and glowed as it powered up.

    "Try another Hydro Pump!"

    Rich's Milotic fired another Hydro Pump, but once again it missed.

    "Wahahaha! I'm sorry to do this, since your cutie wife is rooting for you and all, but this is still a competition! Skarmory, use Hyper Beam to end this!"

    Skarmory focused, then launched an even more massive Hyper Beam from its mouth at Milotic. It hit and exploded, and when the dust cleared Milotic was lying on the ground moaning.

    "Miiiiiii......loooooo.......ololo...."

    "NO! Milotic!"

    Rich rushed to his fallen friend and held its head in his arms.

    "Oh, Milotic....I'm sorry....."

    Gonzap, meanwhile, was proud of his performance.

    "There's a reason I was the Juggernaut bitch, people! Now you see that I am the strongest trainer in Eclo Cany---"

    Suddenly, a bright light filled the arena.

    "Huh? Rich, what's going on?"

    "I don't know! The light is coming from Milotic!"

    Rich stepped back as Milotic got back up and began to grow. It grew about four feet longer, and when the light faded, its whole body was a rich golden color with its tail fin having a mirror-like shine.

    "Melllooooooo! Melllodiiiiiiic!"

    "Milo.....Milotic?!! What the?!"

    Rich, not knowing what to do, scanned the creature with the P*DA.

    "Melodic, the harmony Pokémon. Evolves from Milotic when Milotic is truly attached to its trainer. When their evolution is imminent, Milotic use their attacks to burrow from the deep lakes they live in to the open ocean where they evolve into Melodic. Melodic live in the deepest areas of the ocean and in coral reefs. They are extremely docile in the wild, but are known to attack those that pollute the ocean and destroy their coral reef homes."

    "Melodic....you evolved for me and Anabel, didn't you? I understand......hey, Gonzap, it ain't over yet! Melodic, show him your power! HYDRO PUMP!"

    Melodic fired a massive Hydro Pump. This one, thanks to its newly-evolved surge in power, instantly knocked Skarmory out.

    "But....But........I'm the Juggernaut biiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiitch!"

    ////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "I can't believe it! Not only did he unmask Juggernaut, Rich has defeated him as well! The winner and new champion of Snagem Colosseum.....Rich Mistbloom of Phenac City! Congratulations!"

    The crowd drowned Rich in applause, and he reveled in it. Even Gonzap, his fallen opponent, was giving him the props he had earned in a hard-fought battle.

    ------------------------------------------------------------------

    After the challenge ended, Rich was back at the front gate talking with the receptionist.

    "You are skilled, Mr. Mistbloom. I never expected you to take down Juggenaut."

    "Well, I did. It was tough, but I did it. Now do I get my emblem?"

    Gonzap approached Rich.

    "Well done, Rich. You have proven yourself more than worthy in my eyes. Not only will I give you the Snagem Emblem...." Gonzap handed Rich the gold disc with Snagem's logo carved into it. ".....I will also appoint you Deputy Head of Team Snagem. Any time you're around Eclo Canyon, drop in. We'd be happy to train with you any time."

    "Thank you for everything, Gonzap. And especially for one hell of a battle."

    "The pleasure's mine. Now, go! Go to your lover's waiting arms. It's where you belong."

    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Anabel was laying in her hospital bed, half asleep, when Nurse Joy came into the room.

    "Anabel? How are you feeling?"

    "Huh......oh! I was half asleep. I'm fine, I just want to see Rich again."

    "Well, you're in luck in that case!"

    Rich burst through the door behind Nurse Joy, and Anabel's face instantly lit up.

    "RICH!"

    They embraced for what seemed like forever. Nurse Joy had to practically pull them apart.

    "Is she alright? Can she leave?"

    "Everything's one hundred percent a-ok. You two can leave whenever you're ready."

    "Tell me about Snagem Colosseum, Rich."

    "Okay. Juggernaut was really tough, and like I said I lost the first time I faced him. I went to train and got to work with Team Snagem's leader, Gonzap, then I made another Colosseum challenge. That was when I unmasked and defeated Juggernaut."

    "Who was it?"

    "It was Gonzap in a disguise. I won, and he gave me the emblem. Not only that, but we have a new friend as well."

    Rich popped open a Poké Ball, and Melodic appeared.

    "This is Melodic. It evolved from my Milotic at the decisive moment of the final battle to help me win for you."

    "Hello, Melodic."

    Rich recalled Melodic and helped Anabel up.

    "You two look so cute together. Say, Anabel, tell him my idea."

    "Oh yeah. Nurse Joy suggested we go to Sorbera Island next. It's a lovely place southwest of Gateon Port, where we can catch the ferry. It's said to have this amazingly romantic feel to it, in addition to having a Colosseum. I think it's where we should go now, with everything that's happening in our lives and all."

    "Sounds good to me. Thank you for all your help, Joy, and do thank Justy next time you see him. We're off."



    And so, Rich managed to take down the infamous Juggernaut--who was none other than his training partner, Gonzap! Now with the Snagem Emblem and an even closer friend in Melodic, Rich and Anabel head off to the lovers' paradise, Sorbera Island. What awaits them there? Stay tuned!




    END of CHAPTER SEVEN
    Last edited by Nando; 26th August 2006 at 07:36 PM.

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    CHAPTER EIGHT: Heartfelt Appeals


    Sorbera Island wasn't far from Gateon Port, as it turned out. The ferry---a small steamboat painted the customary red-and-white---was able to reach it in no time whatsoever. Rich and Anabel stepped off at the docks and looked around. Sorbera Island was a beautiful place, with clear skies, glistening water, a lovely beach, and a small town past the beach.

    "I'm glad you suggested we come here. I already love you more, heheh."

    Rich kissed Anabel on the cheek. She smiled, then took out the travel booklet and opened it.

    "Let's see here......Sorbera Island. The island known as the most romantic place in Orre. Places to see: Arland Beach, the world's most beautiful beach. Also on Sorbera Island: the Cloyster Club, home of the world's top rated clam chowder; Sorbera Colosseum; and the Sorbera Pokémon Contest Hall."

    "I'm raring to go for the Colosseum. Let's hit that first."

    "No, I'm hungry. Let's go for the clam chowder."

    "Fine by me."

    Rich and Anabel walked into the town. Soon they found the Cloyster Club---after all, it was shaped like a giant Cloyster. They went in, took a moment to admire the rustic wood tones, and sat down at a table. It wasn't long before........

    "Anabel?!!! Anabel, is that you?!?!"

    They turned. Behind their table was a young man wearing a blue shirt, jeans, and a red cap. With him were a red-haired girl in yellow, another girl with brown hair and a red bandanna, and a young black-haired boy with glasses. Anabel recognized them right away.

    "Ash! Ash, May, Max!! It's been so long!"

    "Indeed it has, Anabel. Remember our battle, seemingly so long ago?"

    "I do. I crushed you the first time, then you managed to pull out a hair's-breadth win the second."

    "Wait, Ash." the red-haired girl said. "When you told me about your Battle Frontier matches, you said you won ALL OF THEM on the FIRST try!"

    "Ahahaha......I guess I lied a little....."

    The redhead went to smack Ash in the face, but Rich got in the way.

    "Whoa, whoa, whoa. Can we keep it civil, at least?"

    "I guess..........wait! Wallace? Why are you here too?!"

    "I don't know who you are. I'm not Wallace."

    "Wallace, after all the time I spent studying with you you forgot my name? Dammit!"

    The redhead got even angrier and smacked Rich instead.

    "Stop!" Anabel called out. "That ISN'T Wallace, it's his twin brother Rich!"

    "Rich.........wha.....oh no! I'm sorry!"

    "It's okay. I think I've gotten off plenty of times in the past where I should've gotten a good smack. So just who are you bunch anyway?"

    "My name's Ash. I'm competing in the Orre Colosseum Challenge."

    "Really? I am too. Have you been to Snagem Colosseum yet?"

    "No. I'm going there last."

    "Glad to meet you, Rich," the redhead said pleasantly. "My name's Misty."

    "I'm May," the brown-haired girl greeted.

    "And I'm Max, May's little brother."

    "I'm pleased to meet all of you. Anabel, how do you know them?"

    "Except for Misty, who I've never met until now, I met them when they came to the old Battle Tower for the Frontier challenge. Ash, why did you never come back for me like you promised?"

    A blank expression suddenly fell over Ash's face.

    "Uh....well, I....uh........."

    "Wait a minute. What does that mean, he never came back for you?"

    "He promised he'd take me on a date after he won all the Frontier Symbols, but he stood me up, Rich."

    "You did WHAT to her?!?! Why you dirty little......well, that's okay now. You'll never touch her because I'm married to her now."

    "Anabel, you married..........someone else?"

    "At the rate you were going, I'd have been eighty years old by the time you remembered about me. And I know that you have a habit of breaking your promises."

    "What? What promises have I broken?"

    "I've met your Pidgeot. Do you recall battling someone named Samurai, also? You promised to return and face him again but you never did."

    Ash's jaw dropped. He could tell he was in deep, deep trouble.

    "I'm so glad I'm not him right now," May whispered to Max.

    "You're telling me....." Max whispered back.

    "Enough! Ash, you and I will settle this in Sorbera Colosseum."

    "What about the Contest Hall?" Misty suggested. "May plans to enter there, why don't one of you enter as well?"

    "Good idea," Anabel agreed. "Why, if I win, the ribbon will be a nice way of showing our daughter what runs in her family."

    Rich stopped dead in his tracks.

    "Duh.....duh.......did you just say what I thought you did?!"

    "I sure did. Why did you think Nurse Joy had to run all those tests on me? What did you think I meant when I said about everything you've done to me? Why do you think Snattle called me fat?"

    "Ahahahahah! This is no time to argue, this is time for a celebration!" Rich hugged and kissed Anabel, then reached into his pocket. "Clam chowder for all, I'll pick up the tab!"

    Meanwhile, a shady-looking man dressed in a Cacturne costume was spying on the situation. With him were a woman with long red hair and a man with sloppy blue hair, both wearing white uniforms with red 'R's on them.

    "That bratty girl is going to get it this time, and for working with me, you'll get to crush your twerps. Does that satisfy you?"

    "I'm more than happy, Harley," the woman answered. "Finally the twerps will learn what happens when you mess with Team Rocket."

    "Can we eat first, Jessie?" the man asked meekly. "He is picking up the tab for all of us......."

    ----------------------------------------------------------------------

    About a half hour later, empty chowder bowls covered the table that Rich, Anabel, Ash, Misty, May and Max were sitting at.

    "Oh man.....that was the best soup I've ever had....." Rich said vacantly.

    "I like ramen more," May commented. "But that was good."

    "You and your ramen, sis! I'm so sick of hearing about......"

    Suddenly, the man in the Cacturne costume skipped up to the table. His long purple hair waved in the air behind him.

    "Hi there, May! It's been oh so long since I saw you!"

    "What do you want, Harley?"

    "Oh, May, I just wanted to meet your sweet little friends here. What's your name, cute blue-haired kid?"

    "Rich. And if you don't mind, me and my wife were eating with Ash and his friends. Please leave us alone."

    "Oh come on! May, Ash, tell him how nice I've been to you in the past!"

    "This guy's harassed May for years," Ash told Rich. "I don't trust him one bit."

    "Pikachuuuuuuu...." Ash's Pikachu chirped glumly. It appeared to agree with him.

    "You kids are so mean!" Harley screamed. "You, Anabel! Please, tell them not to be so mean to me!"

    "Yeah, I guess you guys should lay off of her. We've just met her, Rich, we can't say for sure whether we should trust her or not."

    "I'M A HE!!!! Fine, you freaks just lost a friend!"

    Harley ran off.

    "What a weirdo," Misty said. "We're better off not dealing with his type."

    Harley was hiding behind a nearby column, and was listening in.

    "That's what you think, girlfriend." Harley took out a walkie-talkie. "Operation TR-X may now begin."

    Suddenly, a net dropped on the table, trapping all of them.

    "What?! Anabel, are you OK?"

    "I am....but what's happening?"

    Two silhouettes appeared nearby.

    "Prepare for trouble, it's your Pokémon we'll steal,"

    "And make it double, also we'll ruin your meal!"

    "Oh no......" Ash said in dismay.

    "Not this again...." Misty added.

    The two shadows unveiled themselves as the man and woman who were with Harley earlier.

    "An evil as old as the galaxy!"

    "Sent here to fufill our destiny!"

    A Meowth jumped out from behind the pair.

    "Wit' Meowth, dat's me!"

    "To protect the world from devastation,"

    "To unite all peoples within our nation,"

    "To denounce the evils of truth and love,"

    "To extend our reach to the stars above."

    "Jessie!"

    "James!"

    "And Meowth's da name!"

    "Wherever there's peace in the universe,"

    "Team Rocket will be there,"

    "To make everythin' worse!"

    "Come on. Can't we just enjoy a nice meal without hearing bad poetry?"

    "Sorry, lady," Jessie taunted. "We don't show any mercy to anyone, even if they're a two for the price of one package so to speak. You all will hand over your Pokémon now."

    "Or what?" Rich snarled back.

    "Or we will take them by force!" James laughed.

    "So hand 'em over an' ya won't get hurt!" Meowth added.

    "Never!" Ash shouted. "Pikachu, Thunderbolt!"

    Pikachu launched a blast of electricity from its body, but the net absorbed it and shocked everyone underneath.

    "I don't think so, twoips! Dat net's made to absorb voltage like no tomorrow! An' not only dat, it'll shock ya all back!"

    "Its only weakness is wate....."

    "James, shut up!" Jessie smacked James hard in the face. "Don't go giving away our secrets!"

    "It's too late! Go, Melodic!" Rich popped open the Poké Ball, and Melodic appeared. "Hydro Pump!"

    Melodic blasted the net with water. The net instantly dissolved, freeing the group.

    "Oh no."

    "See? Wit' dat big mouth of yours you blew our twoip-proof trap!"

    Meowth jumped up and scratched James in the face.

    "I guess we have no choice but to fight! Go, Dustox!"

    "You too, Mime Jr.!"

    Jessie sent out a Dustox while James brought out a tiny pink clown-like Pokémon that Rich scanned with the P*DA.

    "Mime Jr., the mime Pokémon. Type is Psychic. Pre-evolved form of Mr. Mime. Mime Jr. love to sing and dance, and they also enjoy mimicking people. They are very jolly by nature and love to perform for others."

    "This shouldn't be too hard. Ash, you ready?"

    "I'm ready! Pikachu, I choose you!"

    "Piiiiika!"

    "Melodic, you go too!"

    "Grrrrrrr........Dustox, Silver Wind!"

    "Mime Jr., Psybeam!"

    Dustox flapped its wings and scattered shiny powder at its opponents. Mime Jr., meanwhile, fired a purple beam of energy from its hands.

    "Stop those attacks with Ice Beam!"

    Melodic fired off a large Ice Beam, freezing both attacks in midair.

    "Now, soak 'em clear through!"

    Melodic then took aim right at Team Rocket and unleashed another Hydro Pump, drenching them.

    "It can't get any worse than this....."

    "Jimmy, I hate to tell ya, but dat twoip's about to blast us off......"

    "Pikachu, Thunder!"

    Pikachu launched several lightning bolts into the sky, then the bolts crashed down onto Team Rocket. They were shocked, then there was an explosion that sent them flying clear out of the Cloyster Club.

    "And we're blasting off agaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaain!!!"

    "Good work, Ash. Shouldn't we be getting over to the Contest Hall now?"

    "Yeah, we should. May and Anabel need to register still."

    "Actually, I'm going to enter as well."

    "Rich? Why?"

    "That way our daughter has better odds of having a ribbon. Let's get going."
    The Sorbera Island Contest Hall was buzzing with activity waiting for the event to begin. Hundreds of trainers were packed inside with their Pokémon, among them a Swalot, a Weavile, a Mr. Mime, a Glalie, an Electabuzz, an Absol and others. Off to the side, Harley and Team Rocket were whispering about something but noone could be bothered to pay attention to them.

    Rich, Anabel and May split off from Ash, Misty and Max at the registration counter. The latter three went off to get seats for the show, while the former group approached the Nurse Joy running the registration.

    "Hello! Welcome to the Sorbera Island Pokémon Contest Hall! How can I help you today?"

    "Yes, Nurse Joy....my wife, myself and our friend would like to register for the Contest."

    "Very well then, Rich. I shall enter you and Anabel at once. And young lady, what's your----"

    "Wait. How do you know my name and Rich's?"

    "My sister runs the Phenac City Pokémon Center! She told me I'd likely see you at the Contest, so I was expecting as much."

    "Small world, eh Anabel?"

    "Sure is, I guess!"

    "And your name, please?"

    "May."

    "Alright. Rich, you are entry 198. Anabel, you're 199, and May, you are number 200. That means the registration for the Contest is filled, and you three are the last to go on."

    "What do we do while we wait?" Rich asked.

    "Usually we go to the back room and watch the other appeals," May explained. "They even usually have ramen stands."

    "Are you seriously hungry after all that chowder?! I have someone else inside me, I'm eating for two, and that was enough!"

    Rich gently pushed Anabel away from May.

    "Uh, dear......you may want to watch your temper, the hormones might be acting up a little bit....."

    -----------------------------------------------------------------------

    The hall itself where the contest would be held was a grand facility. The audience was assembled in theater-in-the-round seating, and Ash, Misty and Max had gotten excellent front-row seats.

    "Wow, look at this place!" Ash raved. "I've never seen a Contest Hall like this one!"

    "I bet my sister is going to enjoy herself," Max added. "Say, this place sure looks like Phenac Stadium."

    "Maybe they built it on the Phenac Stadium model? I like all the water. My miserable sisters wouldn't let me remake the Cerulean Gym like this, that's for sure!"

    An orange-haired woman clad in a purple jacket and wearing quite a bit of makeup skipped out onto the stage holding a microphone.

    "Hellllllllllllllllllllllllllllo one and all! Welcome to the Sorbera Island Pokémon Contest! I'm Corinne, your mistress of ceremonies! Before we get to what you're all dying to see---the stunning appeals of Pokémon and their trainers---allow me to explain the rules. This Pokémon Contest has two rounds. In the first round, each of our two hundred competitors will come out on stage and perform a quick appeal with one of their Pokémon. They will be scored by our panel of four judges on a scale of zero to one hundred---so let's meet our judges now! First, we have Sorbera Island's very own Nurse Joy!"

    The crowd applauded as Nurse Joy entered and took her seat behind one of the desks.

    "Second, the one who keeps the peace on Sorbera Island---Officer Jenny!"

    An Officer Jenny came out next, and sat down next to Joy.

    "Third, the president of the World Pokémon Coordinators Association, Mr. Contesta!"

    A small old man shuffled out, took a bow, and sat down.

    "And finally, Sorbera Island's top trainer, Juna!"

    A tall blonde woman wearing a purple cape stepped out, waved to the crowd, and sat down.

    ------------------------------------------------------------------

    Meanwhile, Rich, Anabel and May were sitting in the waiting room with the other competitors and watching on the big screen. May had gone and gotten herself a stack of about twenty bowls of instant microwave ramen, and Rich had to go get Anabel a cake when May wouldn't share. For himself, he only had a banana.

    "May, who is this Juna person?" Rich asked. "Has Ash said anything about her?"

    "No......I've no clue who she is."

    Anabel instantly produced the travel booklet and opened it.

    "Although considered part of Orre, Sorbera Island does not fall under the jurisdiction of the rest of the region. It is governed by a family of master trainers who pass down the position to the sole child of each generation. Currently the governess of Sorbera Island is Juna, who raises Psychic type Pokémon and also judges the island's Pokémon Contests."

    "Psychic types? Sounds like your kind of trainer, Anabel."

    "I could take her, I think."

    "Like how you beat down Ash," May commented.

    ----------------------------------------------------------------------

    By this point, several coordinators had already been up.

    "Up next is number sixteen!" Corinne shouted. "Harley!"

    Harley jumped out on the stage and danced flamoyantly before taking out a Poké Ball.

    "Banette, get out there! Let's win one for Harley!"

    He threw the ball, and a Banette appeared from it. The Ghost type put its arms up and made a scary face towards the crowd.

    "Ooooh! What a frightening appeal!"

    "Banette, use Will-O-Wisp to spread out the fear!"

    Wisps of blue flame surrounded Banette, then slowly spread out to form a large circle around the hall.

    "Now finish it with Shadow Ball!"

    Banette followed up by launching a number of Shadow Ball attacks from its body, hitting the wisps and bursting them.

    "My, my! Quite the interesting appeal.....let's see what the judges say!"

    All eyes went to the scoreboard, which quickly lit up with the number '79.'

    "A seventy-nine for Harley! Well done!"

    The crowd applauded, but Harley angrily recalled Banette and left the hall.

    "You crap-pies are going to see just how good I am, if it's the last thing I ever do!" he thought to himself.

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Quite a bit of time had passed, and Ash, Misty and Max were starting to become tired.

    "When is this going to be over....." Ash whined.

    "Come on, Ash!" Misty scolded him. "You know how much May loves to do these, and your support means a lot to her."

    "We've been sitting for a while. My sister should be up soon..."

    "Ladies and gentlemen, we've reached number 197! Please welcome the Beautifly Mistress!"

    A woman dressed in a red gown that complemented her long red hair stepped out on stage. True to her mysterious name, she wore glasses that were shaped like a Beautifly's wings.

    "Beautifly Mistress, please send out your Pokémon and appeal."

    "I'll go when I'm ready! Uh...ahem....I mean, yes, of course. Let's go, Weavile!"

    The mystery woman threw a Poké Ball, and out burst a Weavile.

    ----------------------------------------------------------------------

    Hiding in the corner of the waiting room, Harley was watching the appeals while clutching a walkie-talkie. As soon as he saw Weavile, he held it up to his face.

    "Jessie, it's time. You know what to do with my looooooovely little Weavile. Crush those punks!"

    -----------------------------------------------------------------------

    As soon as she heard Harley's command, the Beautifly Mistress---now quite obviously Jessie in a disguise---smiled.

    "Yes, Weavile, let's entertain them well. Blizzard!"

    Weavile's claws began to glow bright white, then it launched a blast of ice straight at Corinne, who jumped out of the way just in time. The ice formed an elaborate frozen shape on the stage.

    "Oh my, what a chilling move that the Beautifly Mistress has made!"

    "Use Revenge!"

    Its body now glowed red, and Weavile rushed the ice shape. When it made contact the shape shattered and Weavile flipped up into the air.

    "Finish up with Shadow Ball!"

    Weavile formed a Shadow Ball between its claws and flung it at one of the large chunks of ice, shattering it further. The lights sparkled off the ice shards to make a beautiful display, much to the crowd's delight. Both Jessie and Weavile took bows.

    "Yow! What a show! Now let's see how our judges liked the Beautifly Mistress!"

    The scoreboard lit up a score of 91 for Jessie's appeal.

    "Ninety-one! Well done, Beautifly Mistress!"

    Jessie recalled Weavile, waved to the crowd again, and left the hall.

    "Next up is entry number one hundred and ninety eight. Put your hands together for Rich!"
    "Hey, look! Ash, Misty, it's Rich!"

    Ash, Misty and Max cheered even louder than the rest of the crowd as Rich stepped out on stage and took a bow.

    "Our show is on now, so go Ludicolo!"

    Rich threw the Poké Ball, and out came Ludicolo. The crowd laughed and applauded as it danced around.

    "Ludicolo! Use Ice Beam on the ground!"

    Ludicolo fired a beam of ice straight down at the ground, creating a tall pillar of frozen water. The Pokémon stood atop its creation.

    "Now shatter it with Fire Punch!"

    Ludicolo held up one of its fists, which became a burning fireball. It then drilled down through the ice pillar, breaking it apart and sending chunks of ice flying into the air.

    "Finish up with Hyper Beam!"

    Ludicolo focused, did a backflip, then blasted out a massive energy beam that hit the ice rocks and destroyed them. The steam from the melted ice formed a heart with Anabel's face in it.

    "Oh, oh, oh! What an appeal! That girl must sure be cute, considering how good that face of steam looked. What do the judges say?"

    The crowd went wild when a score of 96 appeared on the scoreboard.

    "Ninety-six out of a hundred! An amazing score for an amazing appeal! Congratulations!"

    Rich took another bow, then left the stage with Ludicolo.

    "Two more to go in the first round of appeals. Ladies and gentlemen, here is number one hundred ninety nine.........and it appears she's the steam girl herself! It's Anabel!"

    Anabel entered the stage, took out a Poké Ball, and released her Scizor from it.

    -----------------------------------------------------------------------

    Back in the waiting room, Harley and Jessie were watching the contest unfold from Harley's hiding place in the back.

    "That's the girl from the Cloyster Club!" Jessie screeched.

    "Not so loud, red-hair. Do you wanna give our plan away? Harley don't think so, girlfriend. In fact, it's go time right now." Harley took out his walkie-talkie. "You hear that?"

    ------------------------------------------------------------------------

    James and Meowth were hiding on the rafters high above the stage. James's Mime Jr. was perched on his shoulder.

    "Got it, Harley. Meowth, how's that trap coming?"

    "It's one hundred percent done, Jimmy. Dem twoips won't know what hit 'em!"

    "Manene! Mane enene!"

    "You're right, Mime Jr. Let's GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!"

    James pushed a button on a remote control, and a net made of iron cables fell down onto the stage and sealed into place.

    "Oh no!" Corinne screamed. "Just as Anabel was about to begin her appeal, a steel net has trapped us!"

    ---------------------------------------------------------------------

    "What?!!! ANABEL!!!"

    Rich and May had jumped up in panic, seeing what had just happened on the big screen.

    "The hall was booby-trapped? And just before I was to go on! Rich, let's fix this mess!"

    Rich nodded, then the two of them rushed out. Harley grinned wickedly from his position, and Jessie was gone.

    -----------------------------------------------------------------------

    "Anabel!" Ash called down from the stands. "Anabel, are you alright?"

    "I'm fine!" she called back. "What's going on, though?"

    Rich and May arrived in the stands next to Ash, Misty and Max.

    "Max, Misty, do you have any clue what just happened?"

    "Sorry, Rich...." Max said, "but I have no clue. That's no Pokémon attack, that's for sure."

    "I have a bad feeling I know what this is......." Misty commented gloomily.

    "Wahahahahahahah!!! This contest is ours!"

    "........I knew it, them again!"

    Jessie, James and Meowth appeared on a steel beam that lowered from the ceiling.

    "Prepare for trouble, it's your Pokémon we're after,"

    "And make it doub----"

    "Shut it!" Rich screamed at them. "This is like a rerun of a bad movie I bought on video!"

    Team Rocket's faces fell blank, then they jumped off the beam to the ground.

    "Twoip, if you think dis is a bad movie, wait till ya see da encore!"

    "James and I will be taking the Pokémon all of you own now. Don't resist, or we'll hurt you."

    "That's right, we'll hurt you a lot!"

    "Manene ene!"

    Underneath the net, Anabel was just staring up at Team Rocket.......but suddenly she became furious and snapped.

    "How----how dare you ruin this contest! Scizor, teach them a lesson!"

    Anabel's Scizor rushed towards Team Rocket, reached through the net, and clamped Meowth's tail in one of its pincers with a Metal Claw.

    "YEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEOOOOOWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW! !!!!! Are you nuts, lady?! Let my tail go!"

    "Dream on. Scizor, Fury Cutter!"

    Scizor's other pincer glowed bright green, then it bashed Meowth with the claw. At the same time Scizor released its hold, so Meowth went flying and crashed into Jessie and James.

    "Anabel, stand back! I'm getting you out of there! Go, Salamence!"

    Rich threw a Poké Ball, sending out Salamence.

    "Combusken, you help out too!"

    May sent out her Combusken, which jumped onto Salamence's back.

    "Flamethrower!"

    "Add in a Fire Spin!"

    Salamence and Combusken launched a combination of their fire attacks, focused on a spot on the net. Soon the net melted away, and Anabel, Scizor and Corinne were free.

    "Thanks! Now I think it's time to finish this show up. Scizor, Quick Attack!"

    Anabel's Scizor rushed Team Rocket with incredible speed, knocking them across the floor.

    "Hey! Dat ain't fair!"

    "We've no way to counter that speed!" Jessie screamed.

    "And the way you beat on us, that I get from these two!" James added.

    "Since you seem to dislike me so much, I guess it's a good time for you to leave. Scizor! Hyper Beam them outta here!"

    Scizor focused, then fired out a massive energy beam from one of its claws. It hit Team Rocket and exploded, sending them right through the half-opened dome roof of the hall.

    "Awwwww! Now I can't win the contest, all because her hormones are crazy!"

    "I never even got my chowder!"

    "And dat bug pinched da hairs on my tail!"

    "Maaaaaaaaaaanneneneneneeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee.... ......!!!!!"

    A Poké Ball on Jessie's waist burst open, releasing a Wobbuffet.

    "Wobbu! Wobbuffffeeeeeeeeeettttt!!!!!!"

    "And Team Rocket's blasting off agaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaain!"

    With that, Team Rocket soared far away and was defeated. Rich and May jumped onto Salamence's back and glided down to the floor.

    "Anabel, are you alright?"

    "I'm fine, Rich. I must say, that felt good to destroy them thorougly like that."

    "Some show! I'm glad my Combusken could help you."

    "Ladies and gentlemen, that was an incredible appeal!" Corinne announced. "Even though it wasn't planned, Anabel managed to work right through it and put on a grand spectacle for our judges! Speaking of our judges, what's the score?"

    Anabel recieved, much to the crowd's delight, a perfect score of 100.

    "A ONE HUNDRED!!! There's a guarantee that you'll see Anabel in the next round, folks! Now, we'll have a short intermission to clean up Team Rocket's mess, and return with the two hundreth and final appeal soon."

    ----------------------------------------------------------------------

    About fifteen minutes later, Rich and May had gotten rid of all the net by burning it away. They had since returned to the waiting room, and May was about to go on.

    "We're back after our brief intermission! Now, ladies and gentlemen, are you ready for the final appeal of the first round?""

    The crowd cheered, quite loudly.

    "Yes! I thought so! Now put your hands together for entry number 200......May from Petalburg City!"

    May entered the stage and waved to the crowd.

    "Go get 'em, sis! You can do it!" Max called out.

    "I hope Team Rocket didn't shake her up too much....."

    "Come on, Ash!" Misty scolded. "You know she's a pro at this. Goons like those won't throw her performance in the least."

    "Thank you! Thank you oh-so-very much! Delcatty, go!"

    May threw a Poké Ball, and her Delcatty burst out from it.

    "Use Attract, then Tail Whip!"

    Delcatty's body glowed a soft shade of red as hearts appeared in its eyes, then it turned around and waved its tail endearingly at the audience.

    "Shock Wave!"

    The Normal type next absorbed electricity into its body and launched it out into the water flowing around the hall to make the water sparkle brightly.

    "Finish it up with Sing!"

    Delcatty began singing with a soft voice. Normally this song would cause all hearing it to fall asleep, but the way this one was delivered made it simply sound divine.

    "Oh, my! My! Look at all the ace appeals we've had today! What's May's score in the end?"

    A picture of May appeared on the screen.....next to a score of 98.

    "Yes, a ninety-eight! What a score! Now, all competitors will return to the waiting room while we draw up the brackets for the next round and its twenty competitors."

    ----------------------------------------------------------------------

    Ash, Misty and Max joined Rich, Anabel and May in the waiting room between rounds. May was pounding her face into another bowl of ramen and Anabel ate some more cake while the others talked.

    "So what's it like, being in the top three?" Ash asked.

    "It's not as easy as you'd think. Especially considering the two above me are a friend and my wife."

    "I was just wondering...." Max said. "Did Harley make it through?"

    "I sure hope not," Misty replied. "He's got a Yanma stuck up his......"

    "A Yanma stuck up my what?!?!"

    Harley had appeared out of nowhere.

    "All thanks to you freaks, those Rockets were blasted off while they still had MY Weavile! Now I have to hunt them down and get it back!"

    "Wait...." May said, lifting her head from the food, "you were in league with Team Rocket again?"

    "Girlfriend, we had planned to knock you out, then they were going to take all of your friends' Pokémon. But they gave the job the royal screw-up, and now I'm stuck finishing it myself! You just listen to me, ramen girl and loose pants. You cross me ONCE in the next round and you will NOT like the result. Toodles, now!"

    Harley skipped away, shaking his rear end at them.

    "Rich....."

    "Anabel?"

    "Did he just call me 'loose pants,' Rich?"

    "Yes."

    Anabel slammed her fist on the table and stood up.

    "I don't have to take that from that Cacturne-obsessed freak! Why, I'll.....!!!"

    Rich and Ash gently held Anabel back from going after Harley.

    "Calm now, dear. We can't have those hormones raging any more than they already are....."
    May and Anabel were still eating away at their respective ramen bowls and cake plates while Rich talked with Ash, Misty and Max. They stopped, however, when Corinne's voice came over the loudspeaker.

    "Coordinators, the second round brackets have been determined! The first contest battle will be between May and Harley!"

    May dropped her spoon as her face went blank with shock.

    "H-H-Harley?! In the FIRST battle?"

    Across the room, Harley stood against the wall and smugly giggled to himself. He then took out a Poké Ball and held it in his hand.

    "Now we can finally destroy that ramen-loving pest, Rafflsite. We'll avenge Weavile while we're at it."

    ---------------------------------------------------------------------

    The hall itself was now decorated with brightly colored streamers. The crowd was definitely pumped for the match and cheered loudly when Corinne skipped out on stage, followed by her loyal Vaporeon.

    "Ladies and gentlemen! The Sorbera Island Pokémon Contest is now entering its second round! In this round, our top twenty finishers will compete against each other in one-on-one battles that will last for five minutes. Each competitor is spotted one hundred points, and they must whittle down their opponent's points to nothing through battling with skill, strength, and grace! When the five minutes is up, the trainer with the lower amount of points loses. You also lose if your Pokémon faints or you run out of points. With the rules said and done, let's get to our first battle! Now entering the stage are the first two coordinators to face off, May and Harley!"

    May entered with a serious look on her face, while Harley simply skipped in and waved to the crowd....all while shaking his rear end at May.

    "I'm not falling for your tricks this time, Harley. I don't intend to lose."

    "Girlfriend, you so haven't got a clue as to what I plan to do to you. I'll blast you, turn you inside out, and rip you in half. Are you ready?"

    "Round one, May versus Harley! Begin!"

    /////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Pkmn Coordinator May ---vs.--- Shady Guy Harley
    /////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "Combusken, let's go! We can win this!"

    "Hmph. Is that your best, honey? I guess it's time for me to own you with a capital 'P.' Go, Rafflsite!"

    Harley threw his Poké Ball, and out of it came a creature that resembled a large flower with giant petals and a blank expression on its face.

    "Rafflsite, you called it? What is that?"

    May took out her Pokédex and scanned the creature.

    "Rafflsite, the poison weed Pokémon. Type is Grass/Dark. Rafflsite grow and thrive in the steamy jungles of the south. They stay still and give off a smell of rotting meat, which attracts their prey of wild Yanma, Ninjask and Dustox. This smell is widely considered comparable only to that of a Gloom in terms of foulness, but like a Gloom's odor it can be used to make exquisite perfumes."

    Harley giggled at May's not knowing of Rafflsite.

    "Oh, you will find Rafflsite most attractive.....especially when I make it eat you whole! Attack with Poison Gas!"

    Rafflsite folded up its petals, then unfolded and released a terrible-smelling gas into the air.

    "Combusken, use Protect to wait it out!"

    May's Combusken covered itself with a shield of green light.

    "Looks like we have a battle of attrition here! Cough.....Harley's attack's odor is going to cost him points, but May's not attacking isn't good either!"

    Both May and Harley's meters began to slowly fall. They stopped when the gas cleared and Combusken dropped its shield, both at about 75%.

    "We needn't show any mercy to her, Rafflsite, darling! Use Razor Leaf!"

    Still not showing any expression on its face, Rafflsite sent a barrage of sharp-edged leaves at Combusken.

    "Use them as platforms, then hit with Sky Uppercut!"

    Combusken jumped and used the leaves as stepping stones to approach Rafflsite, then hit the plant with a powerful uppercut.

    "Oh my! When May goes on the offensive, she doesn't mess around! Harley's taking a severe hit from this one!"

    Harley's points plummeted, finally stopping at 30%.

    "WHAT? You......how DARE you! Rafflsite, I want you to KILL that Combusken! Use Smog and don't let up one bit! Choke the whole hall out if you must!"

    Finally, Rafflsite sprung to life. It angrily curled up its petals to focus, then began giving off its trademark terrible odor.

    "Cough....cough......H-Harley's going to......cough!....he's going to ruin his appeal with....this......"

    Harley's points dropped down to zero due to the putridness of his appeal, but he didn't notice. He also seemed immune to the smell.

    "Keep going, Rafflsite! Destroy the girl and her Combus----"

    "Stop it right there! You're not destroying anyone!"

    Harley turned around, only to see Rich with a Poké Ball ready. Ash, Misty, Anabel and Max were behind him.

    "Salamence, go! Stop that crazed plant!"

    Salamence burst from the ball and flew into the air.

    "Use Whirlwind to blow the gas away!"

    "Salahhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!!!!"

    Salamence flapped its wings powerfully, the wind clearing the gas from the hall.

    "My...my masterpiece attack!"

    Corinne got up from the floor and choked out a cough.

    "Harley, you're disqualified! Trying to kill opponents is a no-no!"

    ///////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "What? You cannot disqualify me! It was perfectly legal, and besides, that metrosexual boy behind me interf---"

    "You! Don't talk about my Rich like that! Rich, let's crush him!"

    "Let's."

    Anabel threw a Poké Ball, and out came her Alakazam.

    "Alakazam, Psychic!"

    Alakazam's eyes glowed blue as it lifted Harley and Rafflsite into the air with psychic power.

    "Now send 'em outta here! Salamence, Dragon Claw!"

    Salamence flew forward with claws outstretched and rammed the evil pair, sending them flying through the roof in a fashion similar to that of Team Rocket's exit.

    "Noooo! This was the time I was gonna win! Girl, you're paying for this when next we meet!"

    "RAAAAAAAAFFFFLLLLLLLL!!!!! SIIIIIIITTTEEE!!!!!!!"

    Rich and Anabel recalled their Pokémon, then jumped down to the stage to help May up.

    "Are you alright, May?"

    "I'm fine, Rich. That dirty trick...."

    Corinne approached them with a glum look on her face.

    "Um....I'm sorry to disappoint you, but there IS a problem with your win. Harley was right when he said Rich interfered."

    "It shouldn't matter," Anabel commented. "He was in league with Team Rocket and was involved in setting that trap earlier. Remember, the steel net?"

    "I see. So he shouldn't have competed at all? I agree. Ladies and gentlemen, thanks to a technicality but not to take away from her skill, May will advance on to the next round! Congratulations!"

    -----------------------------------------------------------------------

    Now with Harley and Team Rocket defeated, the contest could continue.

    "Next up," Corinne announced, "will be Rich from Phenac City and William from Pyrite Town!"

    Rich entered and took his customary bow, then sized up his opponent---a young boy in gray shorts and a yellow shirt.

    "Well, hello there. I bet you're good, so I won't go easy on you."

    "The tougher the match, the better! Let's battle!"

    "Round one, Rich versus William! Begin!"

    ////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Pkmn Trainer Rich ---vs.--- Youngster William
    ////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "Here we go! Melodic!"

    "Ooh, a Melodic! Think you can do it, Hypno?"

    "Rich's Melodic versus William's Hypno! This looks like it'll be quite a match!"

    "Let's get the first move in! Hypno, Psybeam!"

    A bright beam of light shot out from the pendulum in Hypno's hand. It hit Melodic but not with much force. Rich lost 5% of his points.

    "You'll need more than that. Melodic, use Sing!"

    Melodic began singing in an absolutely beautful voice. It should have put Hypno to sleep, but it failed. Rich lost 10% more of his points.

    "Oh no! Rich isn't off to a good start!"

    "Thunderpunch!"

    Hypno now rushed forward with its fist electrified and wound up to swing at Melodic.

    "Counter with Iron Tail!"

    Melodic's tail glowed with a metallic shine as the Pokémon swung it at Hypno. Iron Tail met Thunderpunch, and though Hypno was hurt more, Melodic took a bit of damage as well. Rich was now at 75% while William had 80%.

    "Try a Hypnosis!"

    Hypno locked eyes with Melodic and attempted to hypnotize it to sleep......but like Sing, it failed. William lost 5% of his points, tying the score at 75%.

    "Melodic! Use Wrap, then Hydro Pump!"

    Using its long, sinewy body, Melodic wrapped around Hypno. It then faced straight down at its target and attacked with a massive blast of water. This attack sent Hypno to the mat and Melodic flying gracefully in the air to the ground.

    "Oh my! Hypno is down! Will he get up before the judges call this match for Rich?"

    Corinne's question was quickly answered when the judges all put up 'X's on their screens.

    "It's over! Game, set and match go to Rich!"

    ////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    As the crowd cheered, William rushed to his fainted Hypno and helped it up.

    "Are you alright, pal? I guess we really did get in way over our heads...."

    "Nonsense!" Rich and Melodic had made their way over to him. "You and Hypno put up a great match. Well done."

    "Thanks......but my friend....."

    "Hyp........nooooooooh....." Hypno panted weakly.

    "Well, I wouldn't worry about that too much. Here. Melodic, use Refresh to heal Hypno."

    Melodic touched its tail to Hypno's body, and both began to glow blue.

    "Mellloooooooooo......."

    "Thanks!"

    "No problem, don't worry about it. Keep improving and you'll win before you know it!"
    ================================================== =======

    It was some time before Anabel's first round appeal battle. In fact, hers was the last of the round.

    "It's the final first round battle now, folks! We'll bring out the final two coordinators, battle it out, and get ourselves a winner, then go back and draw up the matches for round two. Ladies and gentlemen, now entering the arena are the final two qualifiers, Anabel and Annette!"

    Anabel entered and waved to the crowd with both hands in the air, while her opponent---a young, brown haired girl wearing a full-length frilled white dress---just took out her Poké Ball and stared at it.

    "Are you ready, Annette? This is going to be a tough fight!"

    "That's what I think, too. I think I will win!"

    "Round one, Anabel versus Annette! Begin!"

    //////////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Tower Maiden Anabel --vs.--- Lass Annette
    //////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "Espeon, it's your time to shine! Go!"

    "An Espeon.......you can beat it, Rapidash!"

    "My, my! Anabel's Espeon versus Annette's Rapidash! This is going to be a good one, I know it!"

    "Rapidash, a quick win is what we need! Horn Drill!"

    The fiery horse Pokémon began dashing forward at Espeon, and the horn on its head began to spin in a drilling motion.

    "Dodge with Double Team!"

    Almost instantly, many illusionary copies of Espeon appeared. Rapidash rushed right through one of them, making its attack useless. Annette lost 15% of her points.

    "That miss just cost Annette heavily! Can she recover?"

    "Whip right around and use Flamethrower, Rapidash!"

    Rapidash skidded to a quick stop, spun around, and loosed a large stream of fire from its mouth. It knocked out four more copies of Espeon before hitting the real one with some force, making Anabel lose 15% as well. Annette lost 5% more due to the initial miss.

    "Bring it in with Psychic, then use Zap Cannon when it's close!"

    Espeon's eyes glowed bright blue and the gem on its head a shining red. Rapidash was surrounded by a blue aura and pulled in by Espeon's psychic power, and when the two Pokémon were close enough, Espeon formed a giant ball of electricity and blasted Rapidash with it. Rapidash was sent flying across the stage as Annette lost 30% of her points.

    "Oh my! What a match! Anabel has 85% of her points remaining, Annette only HALF!"

    "We can't give up, Rapidash! Hit her with a Bounce and Stomp combo!"

    Rapidash sprung high into the air, then crashed down onto Espeon with its hooves. Anabel was reduced to 65% remaining.

    "We need something new. Espeon, Shadow Ball!"

    Espeon formed a lump of dark energy and hurled it at Rapidash. The attack hit and reduced Annette's points by 10%.

    "Upping the stakes is the only way we can win now! Fire Blast!"

    Rapidash regained its composure and launched a giant fireball at Espeon. Espeon missed taking a direct hit, but was grazed enough to knock off 15% of Anabel's points.

    "Anabel has a ten-point lead now, 50% to 40%!"

    Anabel suddenly noticed that Rapidash was tired and panting.

    "Espeon, let's end this," she said to her Pokémon telepathically. "Use Psychic to draw it close again, then finish it with Zap Cannon!"

    Espeon followed Anabel's direction, using its psychic power to lift Rapidash, move it closer, and slam the fire horse down. Annette lost 10%, then Espeon fired a Zap Cannon that hit Rapidash and sent it flying across the stage. When it landed and the dust cleared, Rapidash was fainted.

    "Rapidash is down! The victory goes to Anabel!"

    //////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "What a match! A hard-fought, drawn-out clash to the bitter end between opponents of perfectly matched power! Remember this battle, ladies and gentlemen, it's rare to see anything like this EVER!"

    Annette rushed to her defeated Rapidash.

    "Rapidash.......are you alright? I should've never entered you in this. This is all my fault."

    Anabel and Espeon approached them.

    "Don't think like that. Every great trainer or coordinator takes losses, some of them hard-fought, and others where you just get trampled."

    "What......what do you mean?"

    "Even I've taken some crushing losses in the past, so I know a thing or two about them. And that was by no means a crushing loss---you had me on the run the whole time. Had my Psychic and Zap Cannon combo failed, I'd have lost. So there's no need to get down on yourself."

    "You're right! Thank you, Anabel. I feel much better now."

    "Raaaaaaaaaaaaapppiiii! Daaaaaaaasssssh."

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------

    There was no more ramen and no more cake in the waiting room at this point. All the focus was on the upcoming battles.

    "May, are all contests like this?" Rich asked. "I must say I am enjoying myself immensely."

    "Me too," Anabel added.

    "I'm not a trainer, I'm a coordinator, so I'm naturally biased towards contests. But yes, they are a lot of fun."

    "Heeeeeeeeeeeeeeeelllllllllllllllllooooooooooooooo oooooo, ladies and gentlemen!!" Corinne screamed over the loudspeaker. "Our ten qualifiers have been written up into brackets totalling a number of five matches. The first match of round two will be between.......

    Rich......



    and Anabel!"

    Rich's jaw dropped, but Anabel seemed calm.

    "Oh.....oh.....now we know, one of us is going to lose..."

    "Come on, Rich. Are you scared?" Anabel teased.

    "No! I'm not scared.....if I was scared of you how would I be able to sleep with you? So don't expect me to go easy on you!"

    "You never do."

    Nearby, May sweatdropped.

    "Uh......does that mean what.....?"

    "Get your mind out of the gutter, May!" Rich shouted. "Though it IS true, heheheheh. We'd better be going out there now."

    "Let's."

    ---------------------------------------------------------------------

    "Ladies and gentlemen, here we GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!! Round two's about to kick off right here in the Sorbera Island Contest Hall, and boy, we've got a doozy of a match about to go down! The rules are the same as in the first battle round, five minutes, whittle down your opponent's points, etcetera, etcetera, but the stakes are much higher as we're now a step closer to that coveted Ribbon that the winner of the contest recieves! Now, let's get down to business. The first battle of round two will be............Rich versus Anabel!"

    Rich came out and took his bow, while Anabel waved to the crowd.

    "This one's going to be good," Ash commented. "I hope May's watching, she might learn something."

    "Why would you say that, Ash?" Misty scolded again. "May knows plenty!"

    "But with the two of them throwing down.......we may see things we've never even dreamed of."

    "I never imagined I'd be facing you so soon, Anabel! I sure hope you're ready, Melodic and I have our sights set on that Ribbon!"

    "Only one of us can win this. I have every intention of being the one who wins this for our daughter!"

    "Round two, Rich versus Anabel! Begin!"

    ////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Pkmn Trainer Rich ---vs.--- Tower Maiden Anabel
    ////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "Here we go, Melodic! No holding back!"

    "I won't hold back either, then! Go, Espeon!"

    "Two truly skilled trainers going at it with two strong Pokémon---Rich's Melodic versus Anabel's Espeon! This one's gonna be a good one!"

    "Espeon, start off quickly! Body Slam!"

    "Meet it with Iron Tail!"

    Espeon rushed forward to tackle Melodic, but Rich's Pokémon blocked much of the impact with an Iron Tail attack. Rich lost 5%, Anabel 10%.

    "Evenly matched so far out of the gate......"

    "Espeon, try something different! Psychic!"

    Espeon's eyes glowed as it lifted Melodic into the air with psychic power.

    "Melodic, fight it off! Ice Beam!"

    Melodic tried to launch an icy beam from its mouth, but before it could Espeon psychically threw it across the stage. The Ice Beam went far astray, and Melodic landed in the water surrounding the stage with a splash. Rich lost 25% of his points.

    "Anabel has a 20% lead now! This really is shaping up to a doozy of a match!"

    "Hmmmhmhmhm....." Rich smirked. "It's not over yet...."

    "Espeon, go in close and hit it with Psybeam!"

    Espeon rushed forward, jumped into the air, and began charging up a Psybeam attack.

    "Now, Melodic! Surface and attack with Hydro Pump!"

    Melodic burst up from the water and fired a point-blank Hydro Pump that hit Espeon incredibly hard. Anabel lost 20% of her points, tying the score.

    "A tie game now! What a match!"

    Anabel clenched her fists---she was becoming angry, the hormones kicking in again.

    "Es--Es----ESPEON!!! Use Bite!"

    Espeon lept into the air, fell onto Melodic's head, and bit down powerfully. This knocked off 5% of Rich's points.

    "You want to play rough, Anabel? Fine, I'll play rough too. Melodic, use a Wrap attack!"

    Melodic quickly wrapped its long, sinewy body around Espeon and began squeezing. Anabel's points steadily dropped.

    "Don't take that, Espeon! You've got close range, so use Zap Cannon!"

    Espeon looked straight up and blasted Melodic with a Zap Cannon at point-blank range. It inflicted incredible damage, broke the Wrap, and sent Melodic flying into the air. Rich's points plummeted by 35%.

    "Melodic, no! Show them your Recover!"

    Melodic began to glow as it recovered its energy.

    "Battle strategy won't help in a contest. ZAP CANNON!! Again!!"

    Espeon formed another Zap Cannon and hit Melodic with it, creating a huge explosion. The five minute time limit ran out, and when the smoke cleared, Melodic was down anyway.

    "What a match! And the winner is Anabel!"

    /////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "Melodic, you did a great job. Take a good rest."

    A red beam shot out of the Poké Ball Rich held out and absorbed Melodic back into it.

    "I never knew Espeon was so strong.....I guess I sure learned my lesson!"

    "Our battles were good training for this. Great work, Espeon!"

    "Espe!"

    "I knew it would be a doozy, folks, and I was right! Anabel's moving on to the third round!"

    ----------------------------------------------------------------------

    May's match came a short while later. Meanwhile, Rich had joined Ash, Misty and Max in the stands now that he was no longer in the running.

    "Our next match also is shaping up to be a good one, folks! Coming to us from Petalburg City all the way in Hoenn is one coordinator, and the other is a local Sorbera Island trainer! Ladies and gentlemen, the next match is......May versus Ronald!"

    May stepped out and waved to the cheering crowd, while her opponent---a purple-haired young man dressed in a purple sweater---arrogantly adjusted his hair so he'd look just right.

    "Well, hi there! This contest's been a lot of fun so far.....how about you?"

    "Bah, I could care less about fun. Winning these is my life. Ever since that foolish kid beat me and the Pokémon TCG Grand Masters took away my Legendary Cards, I've turned to crushing fools like you in contests. You're going down!"

    "Second round, May versus Ronald! Begin!"
    /////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Pkmn Coordinator May ---vs.--- Card Collector Ronald
    /////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "Combusken, time to go!"

    "Hmph. That's all you've got? How disappointing. Go, Criper!"

    Combusken was released from May's Poké Ball, but out of Ronald's came a strange black creature with a bulbous, knit-cap shaped head, hands that were loosely attached to its body, and what looked like cuts all over it.

    "Cr-.......Criper?......"

    "What, are you scared? Hahaha, the girl's scared! Give up now!"

    May took out her Pokédex and scanned Criper.

    "Criper, the winter ghoul Pokémon. Type is Ghost/Dark. Criper live naturally on the polar ice caps, but have been spotted in similarly bleak areas that they reached by riding on ice floes. They are said to eat ice if they cannot find food, but they are also vicious hunters and will kill any kind of fish or meat as prey. Their detachable heads and hands are used to drain the life from their prey."

    "After that, you should be scared. Criper, start off with Fake Out!"

    Criper focused, then rushed forward at blinding speed and struck Combusken. May lost 5% of her points for the impact.

    "Combusken, Fire Spin!"

    However, Combusken flinched from the Fake Out attack and couldn't move. May lost 10% more.

    "Ronald has a quick lead of 15% over May!"

    "And I intend to make it larger. Shadow Punch!"

    Criper's hands detached from its body, glowed with black light, and flew towards Combusken. It took a hard hit, and May's points fell by 15%, doubling Ronald's lead to 30%.

    "Hit with Fire Punch, then Fire Spin!"

    Combusken rushed Criper and hit it into the air with a fiery punch, then launched a tornado of fire from its beak for the second hit. The ghost Pokémon took a strong blow, as did Ronald's points---he lost 25%.

    "There's only a 5% difference between May and Ronald now! What a match!"

    "Grrrrrrrrr! Enough of this nonsense! Criper, let's finish this! Aerial Ace!"

    Ronald's Criper lept up, then flung its detachable hands down at Combusken. May lost 20% more from the blow.

    "May has only half her points left, and we're still early in the match! Can she make a comeback?!"

    "Fire Blast, Combusken!"

    Combusken drew hot air into its beak with a deep breath, then blasted Criper with a giant fireball. Ronald lost 25%---and the score was now tied. He noticed something, however----Combusken had fallen, tired from the attack.

    "She's weak from the attack! Destroy NOW! Hyper Beam!"

    Criper's hands detached and floated up to around the top of its snow hat, then formed a bowl shape. A great deal of power gathered in the bowl, then a massive beam of energy blasted out straight at Combusken.

    "Combusken, no!!"

    When the beam hit, there was an explosion and smoke filled the hall. May's points plummeted all the way down to 5%.

    "May only has 5% left, but after that, she almost certainly has lost. Ladies and gentlemen, I daresay it is safe to call Ronald the winn--huh?!"

    As the smoke slowly began to dissipate, bright light flashed out from where Combusken had fallen. A shape of this bright light rose from the smoke and soon took shape........the shape of a powerful Blaziken. May's Combusken had evolved.

    "WHAT!! Criper, you fool, you made it evolve instead of killing it!"

    "Oh, oh, my! Oh, my! May's Combusken has evolved into Blaziken with its back to the ropes! With this miraculous development, can she somehow pull off the win!?!"

    "Hahah! Blaziken, you must sure want to get at that thing. Give it an Overheat!"

    Newly evolved and ready for battle, Blaziken absorbed superheated air into its body to become a living fireball, then smashed itself into Criper with an explosion of its own. As the smoke cleared from this blast, Criper had fainted.

    "I don't believe this one bit, not at all! May has won!!!"

    /////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "Incredible! People, this is utterly incredible! With her back to the ropes and time running out in the final round, what seemed to be Ronald's haymaker turned into May's knockout blow! I can't believe what I've seen!"

    May ran to Blaziken and hugged it. Meanwhile, Ronald angrily recalled his Criper and pointed at May.

    "You watch, girl. I may have lost this time, but when next we meet, I will take a great amount of pleasure in beating you about with my Pokémon. Remember this!"

    Ronald stomped out of the hall.

    "And now, ladies and gentlemen, only one match remains. Our four judges will examine the footage of the battles we have just conducted and choose the two winners who fought with the best combination of power and style. Those two chosen ones will face off head-to-head in one final match for THIS.....the Sorbera Island Contest Ribbon! A brief intermission shall now take place as we decide our two finalists!"

    ----------------------------------------------------------------------

    Rich, Ash, Misty and Max rejoined Anabel and May in the waiting room.

    "Anabel, that was something else back there before. I never imagined I'd get my head handed to me so badly, and by you of all people!"

    "If it were anyone other than you, Rich, I'd say you took it easy. But I know you and you never take it easy on me."

    May sweatdropped again, but this time didn't comment.

    "Do you think you'll make it in, sis?" Max asked, breaking the awkward silence.

    "Oh, I don't know. I hope so! I want that ribbon!"

    "Helllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllll llloooooooooooooooooooooooooo ladies and gentlemen!!!" Corinne screamed over the loudspeaker. "We've drawn up the bracket for the final battle of the Sorbera Island Pokémon Contest! The first finalist for that treasured Ribbon is..........


    May from Petalburg City!!"

    "You did it!" Ash exclaimed. "Congratulations!"

    "Well done, May!" Misty added. "Now all that's left is who your opponent is."

    "Facing off against May in the last battle for that Ribbon shall be..........




    Anabel from Three Island!!!!"

    "WHAT?!!!" Rich's jaw dropped in shock. "Anabel......versus May?"

    "Are you surprised, Rich? My performance out there was simply brilliant! I wish you luck, May."

    "And I wish you luck, Anabel. We might be friends, but right now, we're competitors going for that Ribbon---which only one of us can have."

    --------------------------------------------------------------------

    The feeling in the hall was electric, with the crowd pumped and ready for the final battle. A pedestal with the Ribbon was constructed on the stage to show off the prize. Finally, Corinne skipped out on stage with her Vaporeon and the crowd went wild.

    "Ladies and gentlemen! It is now time for the final round of the Sorbera Island Pokémon Contest! All our appeals have been excellent to this point, but now anything can happen as it's down to two. Please put those hands together for our first finalist, May from Petalburg City!"

    May stepped out onto the stage, basking in the spotlight and applause.

    "I'll have you know, May scored higher than even her opponent in this match, so I'd say she's the odds-on favorite to win the whole thing. Let's bring out her opponent now. Coming to us from Three Island in the Sevii Region, Anabel Mistbloom!"

    Anabel entered opposite May, waved to the crowd, and blew a kiss to Rich.

    "Do either of you have anything to say before we begin?"

    "I'm nervous. I may be the favorite to win but you must never underestimate the underdog. Anabel's very skilled."

    "You're skilled too, May. Whoever wins this match deserves the Ribbon one hundred and ten percent, and I suspect that this will be one excellent match indeed."

    "FINAL ROUND!! May versus Anabel! Here we GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!"

    /////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Pkmn Coordinator May ---vs.--- Tower Maiden Anabel
    /////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "It's now or never, Blaziken!"

    "Go, Espeon! We can win this!"

    "Oh my, the tide has just shifted! The odds-on favorite has found herself at a severe type disadvantage! May's Blaziken versus Anabel's Espeon......who will win?!"

    "Blaziken, start off strong! Fire Punch!"

    May's Blaziken shot flames out of its wrists, then rushed forward and hit Espeon into the air with a fiery punch. 10% of Anabel's points were lost.

    "You can counter that! Psybeam!"

    Still flipping over itself in the air, Espeon regained its composure and shot beams of light from its eyes. The attack hit Blaziken off-guard, damaging it well and knocking off 20% of May's points.

    "A small lead for Anabel right now, but it's still close!"

    "Sky Uppercut!"

    Blaziken lept up and hit Espeon with a powerful uppercut while it was still in the air. Espeon went flying even higher, and Anabel lost 20%.

    "Come down hard with Iron Tail!"

    As it began to fall, Espeon's tail glowed with a metallic shine. It crashed its tail down onto Blaziken, taking away 10% of May's points.

    "Oh, oh, oh!!!! Now the score is tied at 70%! What a match!"

    May clenched her teeth, having not expected Anabel to be so tough.

    "I must say I was overconfident. I didn't expect you to be so sharp for your first contest."

    "Don't get cocky, you'll lose to it every time......"

    "Oh? Oh, OK. Blaziken, keep going! Dynamicpunch!"

    "PSYCHIC!"

    Blaziken wound up and swung powerfully at Espeon. The psychic Pokémon tried to use its powers to stop the attack, but it was too little, too late. At the exact moment that Blaziken became gripped by Espeon's power, its Dynamicpunch connected---both Pokémon were sent across the stage and both trainers lost 25% for the sloppiness of the round.

    "We're still tied, this time at 45%! If this keeps up, we may end up in sudden death!"

    "Let's make our move, Blaziken! Use Overheat NOW!"

    After absorbing superheated air, Blaziken became a living fireball and rushed at Espeon.

    "Use Psychic again! Shield yourself!"

    Again, however, it was too late. Espeon gripped Blaziken with its power at the exact moment Blaziken's attack made contact. There was an explosion, and they were both sent into the water.

    "Oh no! Blaziken!"

    "Espeon, keep fighting!"

    "Only one thing we can do when both competitors fall in the drink! Pellip, go!"

    Corinne threw a Poké Ball, and out of it came a much larger than usual Pelipper.

    "Pellip, fetch those two Pokémon that fell in."

    Pelipper dove into the water. After a moment, it came back and spat out Blaziken and Espeon from its bill.


    Both had fainted.

    "Oh! Oh! Oh! What a rare occurance we have! Both competitors are fainted!"

    ///////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "Folks, this is a rare occurance indeed. Not only have both Pokémon fainted, both trainers have an equal number of points as well."

    Anabel and May recalled their Pokémon.

    "That was great, Anabel. No matter which one of us wins, it's deserved."

    "Of course. I think you did better, but......"

    "Oh, no, you definitely out-battled me."

    "Ladies and gentlemen, we have reached a decision! The recipient of the Ribbon....and the winner of the Sorbera Island Pokémon Contest IS........






    BOTH May *and* Anabel!!!!"

    Every jaw in the hall, especially those of May and Anabel, dropped as Corinne produced a pair of Ribbons from her coat. May was handed one, then Anabel recieved the other. Corinne then held up May's left hand and Anabel's right.

    "Ladies and gentlemen, your co-champion coordinators of Sorbera Island!"

    The crowd went wild, satisfied having seen one of the closest contest battles in history. May and Anabel basked in their glory.






    After a grueling fight to the finish, both May and Anabel ended up winning the Sorbera Island Contest. With a Ribbon now in their possession for their daughter---whom Anabel is pregnant with right now---she and Rich's next destination is Sorbera Colosseum, the final stop on the road to Orre Colosseum. After a night's rest a challenge will be made---and more battles will be fought. Stay tuned!


    END of CHAPTER EIGHT

  12. #12
    追放されたバカ Nando's Avatar
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    CHAPTER NINE: The Misty Mistbloom




    By the time Rich and Anabel arrived at the front gate of Sorbera Colosseum, a large crowd had already gathered. Juna was there, giving an interview to the ONBS news crew covering the event. Rich and Anabel could not hear what she was saying, however. They just pushed through the crowd until they reached the front door of the giant domed Poké Ball-shaped building, and went inside.

    An even bigger crowd filled the gigantic interior of the stadium, which had a floor of alternating red carpet and blue tiles. Many of the trainers gathered had their Pokémon out; Rich spotted a Masquerain, a Metang, an Electabuzz, and a Cloyster while Anabel saw a Smeargle, a Butterfree, a Weavile, an Octillery and a Walrein. They went up to the registration desk, where a Nurse Joy was stationed.

    "Hello, there! Welcome to the Sorbera Island Colosseum! Rich, Anabel, how may I help you two today?"

    "Wha.......you know our names too?"

    "How can that be?"

    "Ahaha, my sisters told me about you two. Not only that, the news reports on the ONBS feature you a lot too."

    "You Nurse Joys sure are up on things. Anyway, I'd like to register for the knockout challenge."

    "Ah ha ha, not so fast there, Rich."

    Juna approached Rich and Anabel. Like the previous day at the Contest Hall, she had a very calm air about her.

    "Allow me to introduce myself. I am Juna, the governess of Sorbera Island."

    "Not only that," Nurse Joy added, "but she's a darn good trainer too. Are you going to enter this challenge, Miss Juna?"

    "I could not pass up the opportunity to do battle with not only Rich and Anabel, but the other famous couple that people have been talking about. The pairs entering this tournament look like the best I've seen in quite a while."

    "I don't understand," Rich commented. "What do you mean 'pairs?'"

    "Sorbera Colosseum's rules are a little different from the other Colosseums in Orre. Seeing as Sorbera Island is the Island of Love, we only conduct Tag Battles in our Colosseum. You are encouraged to enter with your significant other, of course, but any tag team is allowed."

    "Let's do it, Rich! If we combine our strength, the power of our love will do the rest!"

    "Sure, I like that deal. Sign us up."

    Juna turned to walk away, but turned back around quickly.

    "Anabel, I've noticed. Isn't it rather uncomfortable being pregnant and wearing something that constricting?"

    "Now that you mention it, it is pretty uncomfortable...."

    "Come with me. We have a superb wardrobe staff here, so I will personally fix you up with something that's comfortable and attractive at the same time."

    Anabel followed Juna while Rich waited at the registration desk. About fifteen minutes later they returned---Anabel was now wearing a sleeveless black dress with three gray stripes running down the middle, matching pants, and a band on each arm near the shoulder. There were three of Anabel's Poké Balls on one band, and the other three on the other.

    "Hey, now! That's good work, Juna. She looks even better now, better than she ever has before."

    "Are you saying I was ugly before?!"

    "No, no no no no! You were perfect before, now you're......uh, more perfect. Yeah, more perfect. Those hormones must be going absolutely nuts....... So is everything set?"

    "The tournament shall begin in just a few moments. I wish you two luck....and may we meet again, this time in the ring."

    "Mr. and Mrs. Mistbloom?" An attendant had come out into the hall. "We're ready to begin. You're slotted to go out first."

    "Excellent!"

    "Take us out there!"

    -----------------------------------------------------------------------

    The arena itself was arranged as a theater-in-the-round, just like the Contest Hall. Also similar to the Contest Hall, fountains flowed out from the walls and into the pool that ringed the arena floor, which was tiled and painted to resemble a giant Poké Ball. Two small bridges, one on the right and the other on the left, provided a way for the competing teams to enter.

    "Ladies and gentlemen!" the announcer boomed. "Welcome! Welcome one and all to the knockout challenge at Sorbera Colosseum! We hope that you will enjoy the tag-team battles we will present for your entertainment. Now, let the tournament begin! Introducing our first two competing teams, Rich & Anabel versus Joseph & Milo!"

    Rich and Anabel entered from the left bridge hand-in-hand. They waved to the crowd, then looked across at their opponents--and Rich jumped in surprise, recognizing one of them.

    "Joseph?! From Snagem Colosseum!"

    "Oh, hey there! I didn't think I'd be seeing you again! Who's that cute-as-a-button little lady you've got in tow this time?"

    "This is my wife, Anabel. Anabel, this is Joseph. I battled him at Snagem Colosseum."

    "Pleased to meet you!"

    "Aw, the pleasure's all mine. My brother and I decided to hit the road a little while after we battled at Snagem........"

    Joseph looked at his brother, who was dressed in a tie-dyed shirt and wore brightly colored glasses.

    ".......but I still think he needs some practice. You wanna help me out?"

    "Come on, man!" Milo said airily. "I ain't no fighter, man. Let's all just get along, OK? Make love, not war!"

    Rich and Anabel stared in disbelief while Joseph just shook his head.

    "Milo, buck up, bro. You're not a bad trainer at all. Take it seriously for once."

    "Geez man, I'm just hangin' loose.....but if you say so, I'll battle."

    "Good! Hey, Rich, Anabel! My Eevees have been trained some more, and we're ready for a rematch!"

    "Bring it on!"

    "We're ready for you!"

    "Now the rules. In the first two rounds of the tournament, each side will be allowed two Pokémon, one per trainer. The first side to lose both Pokémon loses the match. In the semifinals and finals, the matches are six-on-six with three Pokémon to each trainer. And now, let us begin! Round one, Rich & Anabel versus Joseph & Milo! Commence battling!"

    ///////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Pkmn Trainer Rich and Tower Maiden Anabel
    ---vs.---
    Rider Joseph and Hippie Trainer Milo
    ///////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "Let's rock, Vileplume." "It's go time, Glaceon!"

    Milo calmly sent out a Vileplume while Joseph called out a creature that resembled a cat with long ears, an icy horn in the center of its head, and a tail and legs of blue ice.

    "What's that? Rich, scan it and find its data."

    "Will do."

    Rich took out his P*DA and scanned Glaceon.

    "Glaceon, the glacier Pokémon. Type is Ice, evolved from Eevee with an Ice Stone. It is said that Glaceon first evolved when a cruel trainer abandoned an Eevee in a frigid region. The cold temperatures and weather caused a random mutation in the Eevee's genetic code and thusly it took on the characteristics and abilities of ice. Despite having bodies nearly completely made of ice, Glaceon are very flexible, agile fighters."

    "Oooh, great catch there. Looks like we'll have to fight hard, Blaziken!" "He's right. Give it your all, Scizor!"

    "It's Rich's Blaziken and Anabel's Scizor against Joseph's Glaceon and Milo's Vileplume! It's time to throw down!"

    "Blaziken, start this off right! Fire Punch on Vileplume!"

    Blaziken loosed flames from its wrists, then rushed toward Vileplume with a fiery punch attack.

    "Glaceon, cover it and counter with Ice Rock!"

    Before Blaziken could connect, Glaceon jumped in the way and formed a gigantic rock of ice in front of itself. Blaziken punched the rock and it shattered, but doing so also caused Blaziken to hurt its fist due to the hardness of the ice.

    "What?! How did that chunk of ice survive my Fire Punch?"

    "I told you my Eevees had been in training since our last match. Now, Glaceon! While we're hot, make it colder---Ice Rush!"

    The air around Glaceon became incredibly cold, and an ice-like aura surrounded it. It then dashed forward and tackled Blaziken, knocking the Fire type down.

    "Scizor, you've got a shot! Go in for a Metal Claw!"

    Anabel's Scizor took advantage of its close proximity to Glaceon as its claws glowed with a metallic shine. The first claw delivered an uppercut that knocked Glaceon into the air, then the second was a spinning blow that sent it all the way back across the arena floor to Joseph.

    "No, Glaceon!"

    "Awww, man, you dudes are uptight about this thing. Come on, let's chill and spread a little love. Petal Dance~"

    Vileplume scattered petals from its head, then began thrashing about. It crashed into Scizor and inflicted a small amount of damage.

    "I've got it! Blaziken, charge up a Fire Punch and get in close!"

    Blaziken rushed Vileplume again, once more charging up a Fire Punch while doing so.

    "Block it again with Ice Rock!"

    Just like before, Glaceon jumped in the way and formed a giant rock of ice in Blaziken's path.

    "Abort the Fire Punch and use Overheat on Glaceon!"

    Joseph's face went blank as Rich gave the command. He knew he had been outsmarted. Blaziken immediately stopped charging the Fire Punch, absorbed superheated air and became a living fireball, then it crashed through the Ice Rock and delivered a catastrophic knockout blow to Glaceon.

    "Oh no! I've been knocked to the dirt yet again!"

    "Time to finish this up. Scizor, Swords Dance!"

    Scizor waved its claws in the air to power itself up.

    "This feels like y'all are tripping on something. Use Petal Dance again, my sweet weed~~"

    Vileplume continued to thrash about, this time hitting Blaziken.

    "Flamethrower!"

    Blaziken loosed a stream of fire from its beak at Vileplume. It hit and did very high damage, but stopped just short of being a knockout.

    "Scizor, Silver Wind!"

    Scizor flapped its wings to scatter shining powder all over. This attack was the one that knocked out Vileplume.

    "That ain't groovy......"

    //////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "Your winners, Rich and Anabel! Congratulations!!"

    Rich and Anabel basked in their applause for a moment before being led back to the waiting room.
    After a few minutes in the waiting room, the videophone began ringing. Rich picked up the reciever and turned it on.

    "Hello?"

    Wes appeared on the screen.

    "Rich! It's Wes. I saw your battle on TV just now, great work!"

    "Thanks, a lot. Is there anything I can do for you?"

    "I wanted to warn you about something. I just chased a few Enigma Shadow members off my property with some unfriendly persuasion. They were poaching wild Miltank and Ponyta from the ranch!"

    "Poaching?" Anabel shouted. "I hope you fixed them one good one!"

    "I did my best, Anabel. Rui and I did manage to chase them off, but they got away with the Pokémon they captured. She's an emotional wreck now.......it's because we're worried about what's going to happen. I fear it may be something terrible."

    "Terrible? Like what?" Rich asked.

    "Think about it. They were only catching Miltank and Ponyta....neither would serve them all that well as Shadow Pokémon. We fear they may be used to test some kind of other process that could make stronger Shadow Pokémon. Not only that, they appeared to be using the Poké Balls stolen from the Outskirt Stand to do their miserable deeds. They drove away in a pickup truck whose bed was overflowing with hundreds of Poké Balls, which leads me to that belief---"

    The attendant entered the room.

    "Mr. and Mrs. Mistbloom, we're ready for your next match."

    "Sorry, Wes, gotta fly. It's our turn now. We'll keep our eyes open for anything."

    "Thanks, Rich. Good luck out there!"

    Rich hung up, then he and Anabel followed the attendant out of the waiting room.

    --------------------------------------------------------------------

    "Ladies and gentlemen, we're now in the second round of competiton in the Sorbera Colosseum knockout challenge! Keep in mind that this is the final round of one Pokémon to each trainer, and past this point, all battles will be six-on-six, three Pokémon to each trainer. Now, please welcome our first two quarterfinalist teams, Rich & Anabel versus Vinnie & Charles!"

    Like before, Rich and Anabel entered hand-in-hand, waved to the crowd, then faced their opponents for the first time. This round, they were facing a muscle-bound bodybuilder and a scientist clad in a traditional white coat.

    "Hey, you two!" the bodybuilder shouted. "My buddy Charles and I are gonna crush you!"

    "I'd like to see you try," Rich responded.

    "Now, Vinnie, don't lose your temper. You are right though, we most likely will win."

    "Rich, we can do this! Don't get intimidated by their talking big!"

    "Round two match! Rich & Anabel versus Vinnie & Charles! Commence battling!"

    //////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Pkmn Trainer Rich and Tower Maiden Anabel
    ---vs.---
    Bodybuilder Vinnie and Scientist Charles
    //////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "Machamp, get out there!" "Let's not waste too much time, Ditto. Go!"

    "No surprises this time around. Go, Salamence!" "Metagross, it's your time to shine!"

    "It's Rich's Salamence and Anabel's Metagross versus Vinnie's Machamp and Charles's Ditto! How will this battle end up?"

    "Salamence, Brick Break!"

    Salamence took flight and flew quickly towards Ditto with its claws outstretched.

    "Dodge and use Transform!"

    Ditto flattened out its body, causing Salamence to sail right over it. It then began to glow, and in a puff of smoke transformed into a copy of the dragon.

    "What?!"

    "Rich, don't get thrown off. Even though he transformed into Salamence, he's still not as strong as the real thing. Metagross! Use Aerial Ace!"

    Metagross began hovering and tucked in its four legs. It then flew forward and hit Machamp for high damage.

    "Grrrraaaah! Machamp, hit back with Earthquake!"

    Machamp's four fists glowed bright red, then it drilled the ground with them to cause a shock wave. The two Salamence simply flew over it, but Metagross was hit hard.

    "Ditto, Fire Blast!"

    Salamence-Ditto took a deep breath, then exaled a giant fireball at Metagross. When it hit, the fireball exploded, and when the smoke cleared from the blast Metagross was down.

    "Oh! Oh! Metagross..........Rich, it's all up to you now!"

    "We're not done yet! Salamence, Aerial Ace!"

    Still in the air, Salamence dove down and smashed Machamp with its claws. Machamp couldn't take the blow and fainted.

    "Gaaah! No! How could my strength be bested?!"

    "It's now down to a battle between two Salamence! One is real, the other a copy. Who will prevail?"

    "Ditto, hit with Dragon Claw!"

    After breathing green flames onto its claws, Salamence-Ditto slashed Rich's Salamence powerfully.

    "Show him what a real Dragon Claw is like!"

    Rich's Salamence countered with its own Dragon Claw, doing an equal amount of damage.

    "One more time, Ditto! Dragon Claw!"

    Again Salamence-Ditto slashed Rich's Salamence. The real dragon nearly fainted, and was struggling to stay up.

    "What to do....what to........"

    "Rich, you have that attack!" Anabel said to him telepathically. "Meteoric Swarm!"

    "Oh! Oh, Anabel, thank you! Salamence, old friend, muster up everything you've got for a Meteoric Swarm!"

    Salamence flew up into the air and began to glow bright red. It then dive-bombed Salamence-Ditto at incredible speed, knocking the imitation out.

    "My intellect couldn't find a way to win?!"

    //////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "What an intense battle! And the winners of this intense battle are Rich and Anabel!"

    Rich recalled Salamence and held its Poké Ball.

    "Old friend, you did great. Have a good rest."

    As the crowd cheered them on, Rich and Anabel were led back to the waiting room.
    ================================================== ======

    "Ladies and gentlemen, we are now in the semifinal round of the Sorbera Colosseum knockout challenge! Now, every battle is six-on-six with three Pokémon from each trainer. The two winning teams in this round will go on to face off against each other in the last battle for the Sorbera Emblem! On that note, let's begin with our first two semifinalist teams: Rich & Anabel versus Juna & Ragen!"

    After their now customary hand-in-hand entrance, Rich and Anabel both jumped in surprise to see who they were up against.

    "Well, well, well. What have we here? I knew I'd end up against the two of you......"

    "We should've expected it, too, Juna!" Rich said.

    "Who's the guy you're with?"

    "My name's Ragen. I'm Juna's husband, and a former Area Leader from Mt. Battle. Ever since Groudon blasted Mt. Battle apart and left nothing but that Nova Crater behind, I've had more time to spend with her. Our combinations aren't easily beaten."

    "I hate to break it to you, but Rich and I make a good team too. You won't win easily!"

    "We shall see about that. As the governess of this island I have had many battles......but few challengers even put up a fight. I hope you will be different."

    "That's right! Making it to Juna and I here is a feat in and of itself, but nothing else matters now! Come on, steel your nerves and hit us with everything you've got!"

    "Semifinal match, Rich & Anabel versus Juna & Ragen! Commence battling!"

    ///////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Pkmn Trainer Rich and Tower Maiden Anabel
    ---vs.---
    Supertrainer Juna and Supertrainer Ragen
    ///////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "Here we go, Gardevoir!" "Aggron, get out there and fight!"

    "If that's how you want to do it, then there's no choice but Tyranitar!" "Metagross, go and help out too!"

    "Whoa! Ladies and gentlemen, this looks like it's going to be a true clash of titans! We've only just begun and it's already Rich's Tyranitar and Anabel's Metagross versus two equally-strong Pokémon, Juna's Gardevoir and Ragen's Aggron!"

    "Gardevoir, start off with Fire Punch!"

    Anabel jumped back in surprise. Juna was so calm earlier, but now she seemed completely different. Gardevoir's fist burned with heat, then it delivered a super-effective blow to Metagross.

    "She seemed so calm before, Anabel! We let down our guard too soon......Tyranitar, hit back with a Crunch attack!"

    Tyranitar rushed forward with its fangs bared and crunched down on Gardevoir. This attack did a good amount of damage.

    "Metagross, Shadow Ball!"

    Anabel's Metagross, having now recovered from the blow it had taken, formed a ball of dark energy near its mouth and launched it at Gardevoir. Gardevoir took a hard hit, but was still hanging on.

    "Aggron, use Iron Tail on Tyranitar!"

    Aggron's massive tail began to glow with a metallic shine. It then lumbered forward and whipped around, smashing Tyranitar powerfully with it.

    "Another Fire Punch!"

    Gardevoir again rushed forward towards Metagross, this time with both fists on fire.

    "Block it with a Meteor Mash if you can!"

    Metagross's claw shined with the brightness of a star as it swung the claw up into the air. The claw attack came down and hit Gardevoir's Fire Punch head-on, and there was an explosion. Gardevoir was thrown back from the blast fainted, while Metagross was barely able to stay in the battle.

    "That's one down on Juna and Ragen's side!"

    "Gardevoir, return. Next up, I'll pull a card I doubt you expected. Go, Kangaskhan!"

    "A Kangaskhan? I thought you were a Psychic trainer!"

    "Ah, Anabel, that's where you're somewhat wrong. I do favor Psychic Pokémon---but I was wise enough to choose other types, also. Surprised?"

    "I guess I shouldn't be." Anabel leaned over and whispered to Rich. "Let's keep attacking her, I've got a bad feeling about what he's got past that Aggron...."

    "I think you're right," Rich whispered back.

    "Very well, then. Metagross, come back!" Anabel recalled Metagross and threw another Poké Ball. "Go, Scizor!"

    "Aggron, hit Tyranitar with another Iron Tail!"

    Aggron swung its steel-hard tail at Tyranitar again, but this time it missed.

    "Kangaskhan, let us get rid of that troublesome Tyranitar now. Brick Break!"

    Juna's Kangaskhan focused and tensed up, then rushed forward and wound up to swing at Tyranitar.

    "Counter it!"

    Just as Kangaskhan's punch was about to connect, Tyranitar grabbed it and the two of them rolled to the ground. Tyranitar was able to inflict quite a bit of damage before Kangaskhan finished it off.

    "Both sides have lost one Pokémon now!"

    "Good job, Tyranitar. Return. Go, Blaziken!"

    "Scizor, finish off Kangaskhan! Give it a Brick Break!"

    Anabel's Scizor raised one of its mighty claws and smashed it into Kangaskhan, defeating it.

    "Whoa! Now Juna's down to her last Pokémon, and her team only has four left!"

    "So Kangaskhan wasn't the best choice, that's just fine. Return. My final act of the day shall be.......Xatu! Go!"

    "Aggron, it's time! Earthquake!"

    Ragen's Aggron jumped up and slammed its massive bulk down onto the ground to create a shock wave. Xatu flew over it unharmed, but Scizor and Blaziken were instantly knocked out.

    "WHAT?! Blaziken, no!!"

    "I don't believe this! One tremor and now Juna's team has a 4-3 lead!"

    "Blaziken, return........looks like I've no other choice at this point. Melodic, old friend, get out there and win one for us!"

    "Return, Scizor. Metagross, go back out and help Melodic!"

    "Xatu, Night Shade!"

    Xatu's body turned into a shadow, then it floated over and inflicted some damage on Melodic.

    "Melodic, use Surf!"

    Rich called for the Surf attack with a serious look on his face---Melodic was his final Pokémon, after all. It created a giant wave of water which crashed down onto Aggron and Xatu. Aggron was instantly knocked out, but Xatu only took a bit of damage.

    "Tied 3 to 3 now!"

    "Very good work. Aggron, return! Go, Typhlosion!"

    "Metagross, Rock Slide!"

    Metagross raised its claw, then drilled down into the ground with it. Rocks were kicked up into the air, hitting Typhlosion for quite a bit of damage and knocking out Xatu.

    "Xatu goes down and Juna is out! It's all up to Ragen and his remaining pair to pull this out for his side!"

    "Oh, oh, oh! I've lost? You two aren't like any of the other challengers, not at all!"

    "I'll show them, Juna. Typhlosion, Thunderpunch!"

    One of Typhlosion's fists crackled with electricity, then it delivered a strong blow to Melodic.

    "Surf again!"

    Melodic called forth another giant wave, this one to hit Typhlosion. Typhlosion didn't faint, however, though it came very close.

    "Metagross, finish Typhlosion with Psychic!"

    Anabel's Metagross used its psychic powers to lift Typhlosion into the air. It struggled but couldn't break free, and fainted when Metagross crashed it down.

    "Rich's side has three left, but Ragen's only has one! What will he do?"

    "This isn't good. Return, Typhlosion! I guess I have no other choice....." Ragen took a Poké Ball from his pocket, expanded it, and stared at it in his hand. "For generations my family hunted this Pokémon across the planet.....and it was I who found it, who battled it, and who captured it. May you now feel the raw power of nature itself! Go, Regirock!"

    Ragen threw the Poké Ball and a beast made of tan and orange rocks came out of it. Rich and Anabel jumped back in surprise.

    "REGIROCK?!?! The legendary rock golem?!"

    "I know what that is, but I think I had better scan it anyway."

    Rich took out his P*DA and scanned Regirock with it.

    "Regirock, the rock peak Pokémon. Type is Rock. Regirock is one of a trio of legendary Pokémon created at the end of the Groudon/Kyogre war to represent the basic elements of the earth. Scientists are baffled by its anatomy, which is comprised solely of rocks---it has no sign of a brain or heart, or any kind of internal organ for that matter. Its physical strength is unmatched. Bits of its body often break off in battle, so it replaces them with new rocks on a regular basis."

    "That's right. Now, Regirock, show them what you're capable of! Rock Slide!"

    As if by magic, Regirock instantly summoned several large rocks and threw them at its opponents. Metagross took very little damage, but Melodic was knocked out.

    "Rich is out! Now it's down to Metagross and whatever Anabel's got held in reserve against Regirock! What a match!"

    "Metagross, don't let that thing intimidate you! Hit it with your Meteor Mash!"

    Metagross raised its claw in preparation for another strike.

    "Regirock, block it as much as possible."

    When Metagross swung, Regirock crossed its arms and absorbed the blow. It took some damage, but not much.

    "Wha......? That's a Steel type attack against a Rock type! It should've been a bullseye!"

    "You're forgetting that Regirock is legendary, and legends are legendary because of their power, as you shall see. Regirock, Earthquake!"

    Regirock drilled the ground with its stone arms, causing a shock wave that knocked out Metagross.

    "We are down to the very last Pokémon on both sides! Anabel must make a careful selection here, as it will determine who moves on to the finals!"

    "Metagross, return. I've got to take down that Regirock.....and to do so, I shall choose..........uh..ah...." Anabel clenched her fists as she began to get angry again. "I'm not losing this! Not after Rich and I put in all that hard work! Kingdra, go and win this match once and for all!!"

    "And Anabel selects Kingdra as her final Pokémon. Can it take the legendary Regirock down?"

    "Hydro Pump!!!"

    Kingdra blasted a huge jet of water from its snout at Regirock, but Regirock just crossed its arms again and absorbed the blow, taking little damage.

    "Hmph. Just like all the other challengers who I faced on Mt. Battle. Regirock, let's finish this up now. HYPER BEAM!"

    Regirock held its arms out, and an orb of energy formed between them. It got larger and brighter, then a massive beam of energy blasted out towards Kingdra. Before it hit, Anabel closed her eyes and telepathically gave Kingdra a command........



    When the beam hit, there was a large explosion. Smoke filled the arena.

    "I hate to say it, but there's no way Kingdra could've survived a Hyper Beam that huge. Ragen has almost certainly........" As the smoke cleared, a blue shape could be gradually seen. It was Kingdra, who had used Endure to survive the hit. "I don't believe it!! Somehow, Kingdra knew just the right time to use Endure!!! It's still standing, and Ragen can't believe it!"

    "Ah, the power of telepathy. Now, Kingdra, while Regirock's stunned hit it with Hydro Pump!"

    Kingdra fired another Hydro Pump. This one hit Regirock square in the chest, knocking it onto its back.

    "Regirock, no! This can't be!"

    "Regirock can't move! This doesn't look good for Ragen!"

    "Finish it off! Kingdra, Hydro Pump one last time!"

    Taking a moment to focus, Kingdra took careful aim and fired a third Hydro Pump. It scored another direct hit, causing Regirock to moan in its robotic voice before fainting.

    "Excellent! Even my Regirock fell to you!"

    //////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "What a match! You can't script a battle that good! The winners in this battle for the ages.......Rich and Anabel!"'

    As Rich and Anabel waved to the crowd, Juna and Ragen approached them.

    "Well done, my friends, well done," Juna said. "You have bested me thoroughly, and now that we're out, we'll throw our support behind you."

    "Thank you, Juna," Rich replied gratefully.

    "My Regirock was tough, but it's nothing compared to the challenges you will face in the future. Good luck."

    "Thank you. Rich, I need to sit down. Can we go back to the waiting room now?"

    "Sure. Talk to you again, Juna, Ragen.....and thanks for the great battle."

    Rich and Anabel left the arena to head back to the waiting room.
    ================================================== ===

    "Ladies and gentlemen, it is time! It is time for the FINAL MATCH!! A new champion team will be crowned here at Sorbera Colosseum at the end of this battle!

    Entering the arena first is a husband and wife team. They blew right through their first two pairs of opponents before clashing up against Governor Juna and her husband in the semifinal. After a knock-down, drag-out match it was down to Kingdra versus the legendary Regirock. Contrary to what you might think, Kingdra defeated the golem to earn a spot in the finals. Ladies and gentlemen, now entering the arena.......Rich and Anabel!"

    The crowd went wild as Rich and Anabel, hand-in-hand as always, entered and waved to the crowd. They soaked in the spotlight for a moment, then took their place on the left side of the stage.

    "Battling against Rich and Anabel.....we don't know the true link between these two, but they are rumored to be romantically linked. They also blew past their first two opponents, but they also met little challenge in the third match. In fact, their opponents fielded nothing but Water types like Buoysel, Mantine, Luvdisc and Starmie, so his Pikachu tore right through them. Ladies and gentlemen, your second finalist pair..........Ash and Misty!!"

    Ash and Misty entered and waved to the crowd in a similar fashion. Perched on Ash's shoulder, Pikachu waved also.

    "Pika piiika pikaCHU!"

    "Oh, hello there Rich! Anabel!"

    "Imagine this.....Ash and I against you and Anabel. Rich, could we have planned it any better?"

    "No....." A wry smile appeared on Rich's face. "Now watch Team Rocket appear and ruin it all."

    "Hahaha, that was funny!" Anabel shouted. "But this battle is no joke. Be on your guard, Rich."

    "Oh, I am! I hope you're prepared to go down, Ash!"

    "With Misty helping me, I doubt that will happen."

    "Bring it on! Bring it all on!"

    "FINAL MATCH! Rich & Anabel versus Ash & Misty! Commence battling!"

    ///////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Pkmn Trainer Rich and Tower Maiden Anabel
    ---vs.---
    Pkmn Trainer Ash and Pkmn Trainer Misty
    //////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "Pikachu, I choose you!" "Starmie, you help too!"

    "An interesting pair. Go, Alakazam!" "Metagross, go my friend!"

    "Rich's Alakazam and Anabel's Metagross versus Ash's Pikachu and Misty's Starmie! This looks like it's gonna be a good one!"

    "Alakazam, open this up with a Thunderpunch on Starmie!"

    Alakazam's fist crackled with electricity, and it rushed towards Starmie.

    "Pikachu, protect Starmie with Quick Attack!"

    With amazing speed, Pikachu somehow managed to intercept Alakazam and headbutt it in the chest. Thunderpunch never connected, and Alakazam was sent flying back.

    "Starmie, follow that up with Rapid Spin!"

    Using its psychic powers to float, Starmie turned onto its back and spun at Alakazam. It hit fairly hard, but not too much.

    "Metagross, Shadow Ball!"

    Metagross formed a ball of dark energy and hurled it at Starmie. The starshape Pokémon took a hard hit.

    "This isn't going well. Pikachu, come back." Pikachu ran back to Ash's side, then he took out and threw another Poké Ball. "Galefire, go!"

    Out of the ball came a wispy creature, one that somewhat resembled a Gastly made out of fireballs. Its form was loosely held together, smaller wisps surrounding the main one where its yellow eyes and mouth were. Rich scanned it with the P*DA.

    "Galefire, the heat wave Pokémon. Type is Fire/Ghost, evolved form of Sparkair. Galefire have the power to control both wind and fire. They live in hot regions, such as Mt. Chimney in Hoenn and Mt. Ember in the Sevii Islands. By combining their powers of wind and fire, Galefire can attack with vicious blasts of superheated air."

    "Hm, interesting. I think we'll make a substitution as well. Come back, Alakazam!" Rich recalled Alakazam and threw a new Poké Ball. "Go, Salamence!"

    "Rapid Spin again!"

    Starmie floated up and spun itself into Salamence, but this did very little.

    "Metagross! Finish Starmie off with one more Shadow Ball!"

    Metagross fired off another Shadow Ball, knocking Starmie out.

    "We have the first KO of the match, and it's against Ash and Misty!"

    "Good job, Starmie, return. Go, Laprince!"

    Out of Misty's Poké Ball came a dinosaur like creature whose large body was a soothing blue tone. It had a long neck, a shiny gold shell on its back, and long, curling fur around its ears.

    "What is that? It looks like a Lapras, but it's not....."

    Rich took out his P*DA again and scanned Laprince.

    "Laprince, the ocean transport Pokémon. Type is Water/Ice, evolved form of Lapras. Laprince is an extremely rare species found only in the remotest parts of the South Sea. It is extemely docile and can transport up to ten people on its back. Unlike its previous form, Laprince can swim even across the oceans with ease. A legendary trainer once rode his Laprince around the world in only three days."

    "Laprince, eh? That'll be a tough one....."

    "Galefire, use Heat Wave!"

    Ash's Galefire focused, then sent out a wave of superheated air at Rich and Anabel's Pokémon. Salamence was barely affected, but Metagross was hit very hard.

    "You won't get away with doing that to my dear Anabel's Metagross! Salamence, Hydro Pump!"

    Salamence fired out a powerful jet of water from its mouth at Galefire. The Fire and Ghost type was hit directly, producing a shower of steam.....but when the steam cleared, it was somehow still in the battle.

    "What?! That thing is unusually strong!"

    "I knew catching a Fanflare, the first form of Galefire's family, would pay off. Now, Misty, I do believe you have something to do."

    "Indeed. Laprince, we can't have that dragon here too long. Take it out now with Ice Beam!"

    By chilling the air in front of it, Laprince launched an icy beam that hit and instantly knocked out Salamence.

    "What a hit! Salamence goes down in one, and we're tied up!"

    "Grrrr.....I should have anticipated an Ice attack. Salamence, return. Let's go, Alakazam!"

    "Galefire, use Flamethrower to defeat Metagross!"

    From its mouth, Galefire loosed a stream of flames that knocked out Metagross.

    "Ash and Misty have pulled ahead as Metagross goes down!"

    "Metagross, return! Rich, what should I go with?"

    "Use Kingdra," Rich whispered.

    "Good idea! Okay, Kingdra, go!"

    "Alakazam, Protect!"

    Alakazam encased itself within a shell of green light.

    "What are you doing?"

    "Wipe out Galefire first...."

    "Galefire, Heat Wave!"

    The blast of hot air did almost nothing to Kingdra and bounced off Alakazam's Protect.

    "Surf, Kingdra!"

    Kingdra called down a gigantic wave which did very little damage to Laprince while knocking out Galefire.

    "Galefire goes down and we are tied once more!"

    "Galefire, return. Pikachu, go out there again!"

    "Pika! Pikachuuuuuuuu!"

    "Laprince, use Ice Beam again!"

    Misty's Laprince launched another Ice Beam. This one hit Kingdra and did some damage.

    "Alakazam, Thunderpunch!"

    This time, Alakazam used its power to turn invisible before rushing forward and hitting Laprince with an electric punch.

    "Defeat Alakazam with an Iron Tail, Pikachu!"

    Pikachu's tail glowed with a bright metallic shine, then it jumped up and smashed the tail into Alakazam. Alakazam couldn't take it and fainted.

    "And now Alakazam goes down! Rich has only one Pokémon left, three total for his team."

    "Good work, return, Alakazam. Tyranitar, don't fail me now!"

    "Body Slam! Laprince!"

    Laprince tackled Kingdra powerfully, hitting it quite hard.

    "Tyranitar, use Rock Slide! Try to knock out Laprince if you can!"

    Tyranitar wound up and drilled the ground with its claw, kicking up several large rocks at its opponents. Laprince took a hard hit and fainted, while Pikachu just took damage.

    "Laprince has fainted! Now, what will Misty call upon as her final Pokémon?"


    "You did an awesome job, Laprince. Have a rest. Go........Gyarados!"

    "Oh my! Misty has chosen as her final selection the gigantic Gyarados! How will Rich and Anabel respond to this?!"

    "Pikachu, we've got to get rid of Kingdra. Volt Tackle!"

    Pikachu began dashing towards Kingdra. As it ran it began to wildly give off electricity, and when it hit there was an explosion. Pikachu was sent flying back and took some recoil damage, but the attack did indeed knock out Kingdra.

    "This is going to be the last Pokémon for Rich and Anabel now that Kingdra has been beaten!"

    "You did what we needed, Kingdra. Return. Go, Alakazam!"

    "And Anabel calls out her own Alakazam! Let's see how it differs from Rich's!"

    "Alakazam, Thunderpunch!"

    Anabel's Alakazam lept towards Gyarados and hit it with an electrified punch, doing critical damage.

    "Gyarados, wipe out Tyranitar with Hydro Pump!"

    "Endure!!"

    Gyarados fired a massive jet of water, which did hit Tyranitar. However, Tyranitar had braced itself and thusly survived the hit. Ash and Misty looked stunned.

    "Ahahah! Now, push forward with Rock Slide!"

    Tyranitar sent out more rocks at its opponents. Both Gyarados and Pikachu got hit hard, and both fainted.

    "Oh my!! A double-KO for Rich's Tyranitar! Misty's now out of the fight, and Ash has only one Pokémon left!"

    "Awwwwwww.......I'm the Cerulean Gym Leader, but I lost still......."

    "Pikachu! You alright?"

    "Pika pikaaaaaaaaa......chuu."

    "Here, you did well. Try and pull it out, Glalie! Go!"

    "And Ash's final choice is a Glalie!"

    "Alakazam, Fire Punch!"

    "You use Endure!"

    Anabel's Alakazam rushed forward again, and hit Glalie with a burning punch. Ash, however, managed to use the same trick Rich had, so Glalie survived the attack.

    "Hah, the same trick you used, Rich! Glalie, take down that Tyranitar with Ice Beam!"

    Glalie shot out a beam of ice, hitting and defeating Tyranitar.

    "Rich is out! Now it's down to Anabel versus Ash, Alakazam versus Glalie!"

    "Fire Punch again!"

    "Dodge and use Crunch!"

    Alakazam swung out with another burning fist, but Glalie dodged. As soon as the flame faded, Glalie flew forward and crunched down on Alakazam's arm. The psychic Pokémon screamed out in pain as its strength faded.

    "Don't give up, Alakazam!" Anabel told it telepathically. "Use your other arm to hit it with Fire Punch!"

    Alakazam suddenly regained its focus, and swung with its other fist burning. It scored a direct hit, and Glalie fainted.

    "..."

    //////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "And I thought we'd seen it all, but I was dead wrong! THAT was truly the match for the ages, the battle to end all battles! The winners and new champions of Sorbera Colosseum........Rich and Anabel!!

    The crowd went wild as confetti and streamers were dropped down from the ceiling. Rich and Anabel approached Ash and Misty.

    "That was great," Rich complimented. "I thought Juna and Ragen were tough, but you two gave us a whole new kind of challenge!"

    "They WERE tough, Rich," Anabel added, "but still, I am very surprised we won."

    "It couldn't have happened to a better pair," Misty said. "You two fought in perfect unity. It's almost like your love and your skill in battle are one and the same."

    "Misty and I will be staying on Sorbera Island for now. We plan to make another challenge, so maybe I'll get that Emblem in the end. I'll look forward to seeing you guys at the Orre League Grand Conference!"

    Misty and Ash left the arena.

    "And now, to present our winners with their prizes, please welcome once again the governess of Sorbera Island, Juna!"

    Juna came back out into the arena, holding a microphone.

    "Ladies and gentlemen, what you have seen is truly how tag team battles should be conducted. Let's have a round of applause for Rich and Anabel, and for all our excellent trainer teams from this challenge!" The crowd cheered for a moment, then settled. "I am honored to present these prizes to you two. First, you each get a special Ribbon to commemorate your victory."

    Juna carefully pinned a Ribbon on Rich and then one on Anabel as the crowd cheered again.

    "Next is the symbol of Sorbera Island. Since our humble island is known as the island of love, this Pokémon is our official mascot. And not only that, you two get a special one I caught myself. Here."

    Juna handed Rich a Poké Ball. He popped it open and a shiny yellow Luvdisc came out.

    "Wow! A shiny Luvdisc! Thank you, Juna.....but I cannot keep this. I must share it with the one I share my love with. Anabel, will you become the trainer of our new shiny Luvdisc?"

    "Of course!" Anabel took the ball from Rich, held in high in the air, then recalled Luvdisc into it.

    "And last but certainly not least, you have won the Sorbera Emblem!"

    Finally, Juna handed Rich a gold disc with the shape of Sorbera Colosseum engraved on it. He took out his Emblem Case and put it in.

    "Let me see that Emblem Case, Rich." Rich showed his four Emblems to Juna. "Ladies and gentlemen, you are looking at a qualifier for the Orre League Grand Conference! He has all four Emblems---Pyrite, Realgam, Snagem, and Sorbera! Congratulations!"

    The crowd went wild again.

    ---------------------------------------------------------------------

    Later that evening, Rich and Anabel met Juna in front of the Colosseum.

    "I was very impressed by your skill," Juna said. "I think you'll do very well at the Grand Conference, which shall take place in the not too distant future at the new Orre Colosseum."

    "Thank you, and thank you for all your help," Rich replied gratefully. He suddenly noticed, however, that Anabel seemed very sad about something. "What's wrong, Anabel?"

    "I have a very bad feeling. Something bad involving Enigma Shadow is going to happen soon."

    "Sad to say, you're probably right. Rich, Anabel, I am certain that Enigma Shadow will target the Grand Conference. After all, all of Orre's luminaries will be there along with the strongest Pokémon in the land. It wouldn't be like them at all if they didn't show their miserable faces there. That's why I want you to go to their Shadow Pokémon Factory on Citadark Isle to strike a pre-emptive blow."

    "Citadark Isle?"

    "Isn't that the volcanic island that used to be Cipher's headquarters?"

    "Indeed it is. I was contacted by Secc from ONBS, you see. They recieved another letter signed to "The Mastermind of Shadow Pokémon" that said their factory is on Citadark, which is not too far to the northeast from here. It's got a huge sphere built on it, so you can't miss it. You can leave tomorrow, and I'll lend you my hydrofoil for the trip."

    "Thank you. Anabel, we'll get a good night's sleep and set off for Citadark Isle tomorrow morning."

    "Good. I want to get at Enigma Shadow......"





    And so, after fierce battles against Juna & Ragen, then against Ash & Misty, Rich and Anabel emerged victorious in the Sorbera Colosseum challenge. With all four Emblems now in his possession, Rich can turn once again to fighting Enigma Shadow. The next destination is the Shadow Pokémon Factory on Citadark Isle. What new surprises and old facts await them there? Stay tuned!"

    END of CHAPTER NINE

  13. #13
    追放されたバカ Nando's Avatar
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    CHAPTER TEN: The Six Colors of the Citadark Rainbow




    Citadark Isle was a gloomy place, fitting for an evil organization's operations. Jagged peaks spiked up from its surface, and lava flowed down from a crater atop the island. Topping the sinister island was a gigantic sphere, as Juna had said.

    Inside the sphere was a large chamber with many computers and a giant video screen. A tall man with long blue hair and dark sunglasses stood staring at the screen. His blue and gray robes hung on his thin frame, but still he had a sinister air about him.

    A radar image appeared on the screen of the sea immidiately surrounding Citadark Isle. After a moment, the radar detected something approaching the island.

    "They're coming," the man said to himself before stepping over to a desk and pressing a button. "Hexagon Brothers! You are summoned!"

    Almost instantly, the Hexagon Brothers all appeared in the chamber.

    "Hexagon Brothers reporting for duty, General Ardos!" Resix announced.

    "Rich and Anabel are coming to this island," Ardos said. "You six are my top minions right now, so it is up to you to stop them."

    "Of course, General!" Resix turned to the others. "And you know why? Because we are sextuplets! We are! We are! We strike terror throughout the land! For we are the Hexagon Brothers! Count off!"

    "One!"

    "Two!"

    "Three!"

    "Four!"

    "Five!"

    "...........five? Are you serious, we're missing one again?"

    "That's ridiculously impossible!" Browsix shouted. "Let me try this time. Count off!"

    "One!"

    "Two!"

    "Three!"

    "Four!"

    "Five........see, what did I say? Eh, it doesn't matter. He'll return soon---"

    "ENOUGH!!!" Ardos screamed in frustration. "You fools better be skilled battlers to make up for your idiocy. I'll count you this time myself. Resix, one. Greesix, two. Purpsix, three. Yellosix, four. Blusix, five. Browsix, six. See, you're all there."

    "Good!" Resix smiled. "Now, brothers, may you undertake your assignment with dignity and power! To your positions!"

    All six Hexagon Brothers left the chamber.

    "Why do I have to put up with such fools.......the master's plan should be almost ready by now......hm?"

    Ardos turned back to the screen, where another signal had appeared. It turned out that this second one belonged to Rich and Anabel while the first was someone else's.

    "That's them? But who else could be coming here of all places unannounced?"

    Ardos tapped a button on the desk to bring up a security camera's view. In the distance, approaching the island, was a large yacht. A red-haired man who looked almost identical to Ardos, clad in red and gray robes and with the same sunglasses, was driving it. He appeared to be alone on the yacht.

    "Grrrrr......it's him. Eldes."

    ------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Rich and Anabel, meanwhile, were driving Juna's small hydrofoil through the choppy waters towards the island. Rich was at the wheel while Anabel monitored the navigation.

    "What are our coordinates, Anabel?"

    "We're in the Orre Sea.......and Citadark should be right......."

    Suddenly the boat smashed right into the shore of Citadark Isle. Rich and Anabel were knocked down, but they jumped right back up and stepped out onto the rocky coastline.

    "This is just a dandy, isn't it Anabel? We wrecked Juna's hydrofoil!"

    "It's alright, we'll just pay her back for it when we're done here.......huh? Rich, do you see that?"

    Anabel pointed at the yacht, which was now docked at the island's pier.

    "Isn't that Verich's cruiser?"

    "Yeah, Anabel, it is! What in the world would he be doing here?"

    "Well, I don't know. But you two are here to shut down our factory, aren't you?!"

    Rich and Anabel turned to see Resix, who had come out from inside the factory.

    "Resix!"

    "Get out of our way. We've got business in there."

    "I don't think so. The Shadow General in charge of this factory has ordered us to stop you. That guy who came through earlier was insanely strong, so let's see about you!"

    //////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Pkmn Trainer Rich ---vs.--- Shadow Peon Resix
    //////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "I'll burn you with my white-hot Pokémon! Go, Camerupt and Magcargo!"

    "Camerupt and Magcargo. Are you serious? Go, Salamence and Melodic! Melodic, Surf!"

    Melodic summoned a huge wave and crashed it down onto Resix's team. Both Pokémon instantly fainted.

    "And that is why you're a Peon."

    "Grrrrr.....it's not over yet! Return, you two! Go, Quagsire and Butterfree!"

    Resix sent out his second and final pair, a Shadow Quagsire and a Shadow Butterfree.

    "Butterfree, Shadow Down!"

    Flapping its wings, Butterfree scattered spores of shadow energy all over Rich's team. This attack weakened their defensive capabilities.

    "Now, Quagsire, capitalize on that with Shadow Rave!"

    Quagsire shot out spikes of shadow energy, hitting both of Rich's Pokémon for a fair amount of damage.

    "I doubt this will present much trouble. Melodic, use Ice Beam on Butterfree!"

    Melodic aimed and fired a beam of ice that hit Butterfree, inflicting high damage and freezing it solid.

    "BUTTERFREE!!"

    "Ah, I feel a bit rusty at this, but it should still work. Snag Ball, go!"

    Rich threw a Snag Ball at the frozen form of Butterfree. The ball absorbed its target, tilted once........




    ........twice.............





    ........and three times before pinging. Rich had successfully Snagged Butterfree.

    "I've still got Quagsire! Shadow Rave!"

    Once again Quagsire launched spikes of shadow energy to hit Rich's team.

    "This one will take a bit more time. Melodic, put it to sleep with Sing."

    "Melllloo, melllllllooooodic......mellllooooooooooo...."

    Melodic's song made Quagsire quickly fall asleep.

    "Good, now use Dragon Claw to weaken it!"

    Salamence breathed green flames onto its claws, then slashed Quagsire for high damage.

    "Quagsire, no! Use Shadow Rave!"

    Quagsire just stayed asleep, however.

    "I think an Ice Beam will be sufficient enough, Melodic."

    Melodic launched another Ice Beam, this one hitting Quagsire. It was still asleep, but took a bit more damage.

    "That'll do! Snag Ball, go!"

    Rich threw another Snag Ball, aimed at Quagsire. After absorbing its target and falling to the ground the ball rocked..........



    .......once...........




    ........twice.............





    ........and three times.


    "Don't you two have better things to do than bother us all the time?"

    ///////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "Bahhhh! The General won't stand for this!"

    Resix ran off, but on his way he dropped a computer disk. Rich picked it up and looked at it.

    "It says "Shadow Pokémon Program Disk 1." Think it's worth holding on to?"

    "I'd keep it. You never know where it may come in handy. Now I think the next place we should go is that cave........"

    Rich and Anabel walked to the cavernous entrance to the factory and went inside......
    ================================================== =====

    Greesix, Purpsix and Yellosix all were lined up in front of Ardos, all near crying.

    "General Ardos!" Greesix whined. "He was too tough! There's no way we could've beaten this thing he pulled on us!"

    "Calm down, all three of you. What is the report from the last two Hexagon Brothers?"

    "They're holding off Eldes just outside," Purpsix said. "From the looks of things, though, they won't win."

    "Great, great, this is just great! The Shadow Emperor's plan is very close to completion! We cannot allow this to happen! I know Resix's already been beaten by Rich in addition to Eldes. Greesix, Purpsix, pair up and go down to the factory's lowest level. You are to take them on as a team."

    "Mission accepted, General!" Greesix replied before running out of the room with Purpsix.

    "You, Yellosix. Go outside and tell the others to let Eldes through without a fight."

    "Huh? You want us to.......just let him through?"

    "Yes. We need all the power we have to stop Rich and Anabel. Your mission is to simply wait outside. If Rich and Anabel beat Greesix and Purpsix, they'll come up. Face him on your own, and you'll have Browsix and Blusix backing you up if you fail."

    ---------------------------------------------------------------------

    Inside the cave was a large room, filled with strange machines of all shapes and sizes. Rich and Anabel stepped up to a computer screen near the gate.

    "Let's see here......think this thing has any information?"

    "It should. Rich, try pushing some buttons on it and see what happens."

    Rich tapped some buttons on the computer's keyboard, and it responded by activating a prerecorded program.

    "Welcome to the Shadow Pokémon Factory on Citadark Isle. At this facility, we manufacture Shadow Pokémon under the guidance of General Ardos of Enigma Shadow."

    "Ardos......the guy who we thought was Eldes's twin?"

    "You're right, Rich. That might explain why Verich's cruiser was here....something isn't right."

    "This factory uses the highest forms of technology in its operation. By combining old data from the former Cipher Admins Ein and Gorigan with the newest technology invented by our Shadow Emperor himself, we output only the highest quality of Shadow Poké---"

    Suddenly, the computer shut off.

    "Hey, you two! What are you doing here?"

    Rich and Anabel turned to see Greesix and Purpsix behind them.

    "Well, so all the Hexagon Brothers are here? I'll battle you and beat all six, so don't waste your time."

    "It's your time that will be wasted!" Purpsix screamed.

    "We six brothers are bound by sixfold brotherly love! Our power is sixfold! And our obedience to General Ardos is sixfold as well! But when Purpsix and I team up.....our sixfold power doubles again! Come on, kiddies, we'll take you both with our sixfold sixfoldedness!"

    ///////////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Pkmn Trainer Rich and Tower Maiden Anabel
    ---vs.---
    Shadow Peon Purpsix and Shadow Peon Greesix
    ///////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "You kids should go home and play with Mommy. Go, Swalot!" "I'll own you with my sixfold strength! Go, Shiftry!"

    "Our mothers aren't here, but I'd be glad to endulge you in a little bit of battling. Salamence, go!" "I hope you two are ready for a sixfold loss. Go, Alakazam!"

    Rich's Salamence and Anabel's Alakazam stared down Purpsix's Swalot and Greesix's Shiftry.

    "Alakazam! Open this up with Psychic!"

    Alakazam began to lift Swalot into the air with its psychic power, but Swalot quickly put up a Protect and cut the attack off.

    "Salamence, Flamethrower!"

    Salamence loosed a stream of fire from its mouth with a vicious roar, hitting Shiftry hard. Somehow it avoided fainting, but sustained a burn from the attack.

    "Hahahah! Shiftry, you hit them right back with everything you've got---EXPLOSION!!!"

    Shiftry absorbed energy into its body, then released it in an explosive blast. It fainted along with Alakazam while Salamence took a good bit of damage. The blast just bounced off Swalot's Protect.

    "I should have known. Alakazam, return! Go, Metagross!"

    "Shiftry, return! Taking its place is its sixfold partner, Raichu!"

    Greesix's second and last Pokémon was a Shadow Raichu.

    "Raichu, Shadow Bolt!"

    Raichu absorbed shadow energy into its body, then zapped Metagross with a bolt of black lightning.

    "Use Fire Blast on Raichu, Salamence!"

    This time Salamence launched a large fireball, which exploded when it hit Raichu. It scored quite a hit.

    "Metagross, Psychic!"

    Anabel's Metagross's eyes glowed blue as it lifted Swalot into the air with psychic power. It then slammed Swalot down, inflicting a critical hit and instantly knocking it out.

    "Swalot! Oh, you kids are gonna get it now. Return! Go, Weezing!"

    Purpsix sent out a Shadow Weezing, his last Pokémon.

    "Weezing, Shadow Sky!"

    Taking a deep breath, Weezing absorbed shadow energy into its body. It then launched a spark of the shadow energy into the air, which burst and formed a shadowy aura that covered the ceiling.

    "Shadow Rush, Raichu!"

    Raichu surrounded itself with the shadowy aura as it tackled Salamence. The dragon was near fainting.

    "Use Ember to weaken Raichu just a little bit more!"

    Out of Salamence's mouth this time came a few small bursts of fire. Raichu took a weak hit, but this was what Rich had intended for.

    "Metagross, attack Weezing with Meteor Mash!"

    Metagross's claw glowed like a star as the steel Pokémon raised it into the air. After a moment, Metagross brought the claw smashing down onto Weezing to inflict critical damage. Bursts of light then rained down from the shadowy aura, striking Salamence and Metagross.

    "Raichu, defeat Salamence with a Shadow Bolt!"

    Raichu knocked out Salamence by zapping it with the Shadow Bolt attack.

    "You did well, Salamence. Return. Go, Tyranitar! And while we're at it, Snag Ball, go!!"

    Rich threw a Snag Ball at Raichu. The ball sucked Raichu into itself before falling to the ground and tilting..........



    ....once......




    ....twice......




    ....and three times.

    "I feel crushing humiliation sixfold!"

    With Raichu snagged, Rich and Anabel could turn their attention to Weezing.

    "Metagross, hold off. Weezing isn't much of a threat."

    "How, how dare you call my Weezing not a threat? Hit her with Shadow Poison!"

    Purpsix's Weezing blasted Metagross with shadowy sludge, but failed to do much damage. More bursts of light rained down and hit Tyranitar and Metagross.

    "Let's put an end to this! Snag Ball, go!"

    Rich threw a second Snag Ball, this one at Weezing. After absorbing its target the ball fell to the ground and began rocking.



    Once.


    Twice.



    Three times.

    "Oh, Mama, I've lost!"

    ///////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "General Ardos will not be pleased! Greesix, what do we do?"

    "Sixfold retreat! It's our only option!"

    Greesix and Purpsix ran back into the elevator they had come down in and escaped. However, both of them had dropped computer disks. Rich picked them up.

    "Look here, Anabel. "Shadow Pokémon Program Disk 2" and "Shadow Pokémon Program Disk 3." These things have got to be important for something."

    "Yeah......but they escaped, and the elevator isn't coming back. What do we do?"

    "I saw an elevator outside as well. Maybe we can take that one."

    "Good idea." Rich and Anabel headed towards the gate, but then she stopped. "Wait, Rich. There's a Healing Machine here, I think we should refresh our Pokémon before going forward."

    "You're right."

    Rich put his six Poké Balls into the machine and activated it. The balls flashed white three times, then Rich took them out and Anabel put hers in. She took them out after three flashes, and then they went back outside and into the elevator going up......................

    ----------------------------------------------------------------------

    The elevator ran for what seemed like forever. Finally it reached its stop, and Rich and Anabel got out. They were now at the peak of Citadark Isle, near the giant sphere. Underneath the giant sphere was the source of the lava flowing down the island's face, and connecting the sphere to the island were several cement columns and a steel bridge. Yellosix was waiting for them at the bridge.

    "Well, well, well. I see you've beaten three of us already."

    "That's right, and I intend to beat the other three as well."

    "I don't think that's going to happen. Because I'll zap you right into submission here and now! Let's fight!"

    ////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Pkmn Trainer Rich ---vs.--- Shadow Peon Yellosix
    ////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    [Yellosix throws two Poké Balls, sending out a Perap and a Shadow Ampharos]

    "Oh, so we open with a Shadow this time? Salamence, Tyranitar, let's go! Salamence, use Rock Slide!"

    Salamence slammed its claw into the ground, kicking up several large rocks at Yellosix's team. Ampharos took a hit, but Perap managed to dodge.

    "Ampharos, retaliate with Shadow Break!"

    Shadow energy pulsed into Ampharos's yellow body, then the aura surrounded it as it rushed into Tyranitar to cause a bit of damage.

    "Perap, Hyper Voice!"

    Yellosix's Perap squaked loudly several times, inflicting small damage on Rich's team.

    "Tyranitar, send that Perap outta here with a Thunder!"

    Tyranitar absorbed power, then loosed it into the sky in the form of several lightning bolts. The bolts then crashed down onto Perap, instantly knocking it out.

    "Gyah! Even my brothers can't do that! Return, Perap! Go, Grumpig!"

    Yellosix sent out a Shadow Grumpig next.

    "Salamence, weaken Ampharos a bit more with Flamethrower!"

    Salamence attacked with a stream of flames, hitting Ampharos hard.

    "Keep on fighting, Ampharos! Shadow Break!"

    Ampharos again absorbed shadow energy, began giving off the aura, and tackled Tyranitar.

    "Grumpig, follow that up with Shadow Half!"

    Grumpig performed a strange dance to send out blades of shadow energy. The blades hit all four battling Pokémon, halving their health.

    "That actually helped me! Tyranitar, Mega Punch!"

    Rich's Tyranitar dashed forward and punched Grumpig with great force.

    "Now, it's time. Snag Ball, go!"

    Rich threw a Snag Ball at Ampharos. The severly weakened Electric type was absorbed into the ball, which then fell and began rocking.......


    ......once.



    ......twice.





    ......and three times.

    "Gahhhh! Nothing's left but this......go, Shedinja! Shadow Ball!"

    As soon as it emerged from its Poké Ball, Yellosix's Shedinja formed a lump of dark energy and hurled it at Salamence. Still, though, it did little.

    "Tyranitar, take Shedinja out with Flamethrower. Our victory is soon at hand."

    Tyranitar attacked Shedinja with the blast of fire, instantly knocking it out. Yellosix recalled it and looked on in desperation, as Grumpig couldn't move---a side effect from using Shadow Half.

    "This is it! Go, Snag Ball!"

    The Snag Ball was thrown at Grumpig. It scooped up its target, fell, and tilted......



    Once.





    Twice.



    Three times.

    "Oooooohhhh, I hate brats!"

    ///////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "You're tough enough that I might let you become my little brother. Think it over, and next time we meet, tell me what color you want!"

    Yellosix ran off, then Browsix and Blusix came out of the sphere to confront Rich and Anabel.

    "That's it, you swaggering brats!" Blusix shouted. "General Ardos has ordered us to destroy you, and destroy we will!"

    "The General's inside the sphere," Browsix added. "He's dealing with some important business....an impudent intruder came marching right up on Citadark Isle and started demanding to see General Ardos at once."

    "You just let him through?" Anabel asked.

    "Oh HELL no!" Browsix replied. "He beat us all upside the heads with his Pokémon! Because of that, we're mad as hell and we'll take it out on you two!"

    "Let's make this interesting," Blusix said. "Since my brother and I have one Shadow Pokémon apiece, we'll make this battle a tag team match with one Pokémon from each trainer. Agreed?"

    Rich and Anabel nodded.

    "Good. Now fall in defeat!"

    //////////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Pkmn Trainer Rich and Tower Maiden Anabel
    ---vs.---
    Shadow Peon Browsix and Shadow Peon Blusix
    /////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "Here we go, Noctowl!" "Go, Sunflora!"

    Both Browsix's Noctowl and Blusix's Sunflora were Shadow Pokémon.

    "We should be able to do this with no problems. Go, Blaziken!" "I agree, Rich. Go, Metagross!"

    Rich's Blaziken and Anabel's Metagross stared down the Shadow Noctowl and Shadow Sunflora.

    "Blaziken, start off with a Sky Uppercut to Noctowl!"

    Blaziken began loosing flames from its wrists, then dashed forward and hit Noctowl with a powerful jumping uppercut.

    "Metagross, you do the same with Sunflora! Meteor Mash!"

    Metagross raised its mighty claw, which was glowing brightly, and smashed it down onto Sunflora for critical damage.

    "Noctowl, don't put up with that! Use Shadow Rush!"

    Noctowl surrounded itself with the shadowy aura as it rushed Blaziken.

    "Sunflora, Shadow Rave!"

    Blusix's Sunflora loosed a wave of shadow energy spikes, hitting both of its opponents.

    "What an easy battle. Snag Ball, go!"

    Rich threw a Snag Ball at Noctowl. The ball fell after grabbing its target, and.....



    .....rocked once........




    ......rocked twice..........



    ......and it rocked a third time.

    "Oh! Oh! Oooohhhhhh!!!!"

    "Metagross, hold off. There's no need to attack."

    "Shadow Rave!!"

    Sunflora launched more spikes of shadow energy, but again it did little.

    "Snag Ball, go!"

    Rich threw another Snag Ball, this one at Sunflora. The three tilts went very quickly, and Sunflora was captured.

    "Yeah! Stars like you beating me down! I hope you're proud!"

    //////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "We're not your playmates forever!"

    "Browsix's right, and when I get serious, the consequences could be really bad. That's why I took it easy on you!"

    Browsix and Blusix ran off, then Rich took a deep breath.

    "Well, Anabel. Are you ready to go in there and confront Ardos?"

    "Let's do it."

    Rich and Anabel walked down the bridge to the sphere and entered.........






    END of CHAPTER TEN (1/2)

  14. #14
    追放されたバカ Nando's Avatar
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    CHAPTER ELEVEN: The Sad Story of the Verich Brothers




    As the door leading inside the giant sphere closed, Rich and Anabel looked around at their surroundings. The whole inside was made of steel painted various shades of gray. Small cubicle walls divided the entrance from the main section of the chamber. In the small entrance room there was a healing machine and a computer, but on the other side of the door two male voices arguing could be heard.

    "I'm telling you, Ardos, this is really important!" one of the voices screamed.

    "I don't care what it is," Ardos replied. "I am not leaving Citadark Isle and the Shadow Pokémon Factory to be wrecked by Rich and Anabel! The Shadow Emperor's orders bind me to this place, and even if they didn't, I would rather stay than go with you."

    "Something's going on," Rich whispered.

    "You're right. I think we'd better go in," Anabel answered.

    As the argument continued, Rich and Anabel stepped quietly to the door dividing them from the scene, and after a moment Anabel pressed the button to open it. There, right in the middle of the chamber, were Eldes and Ardos.

    "---no matter what you say, fool, I will not fall for your tric--huh?!!!" Ardos turned and noticed Rich and Anabel. "You two! The Hexagon Brothers must have failed again!"

    "Rich, Anabel!" Eldes shouted. "What are you doing here? It's far too dangerous!"

    "We came to shut down Enigma Shadow's new factory. Right, Anabel?"

    "That's exactly why, Rich. But why are YOU here, Eldes?"

    Eldes looked down. It was obvious he was anguished about something, even though his eyes were concealed behind his sunglasses.

    "Some......very important information has come to my attention. Yes, very important. It required me to come here on my own to find my brother, but he refuses to listen to me....."

    "What?"

    "Ardos is.........so THAT'S why you two look so much alike! I remember we thought Ardos was your stalker when we first met him!"

    "....back when I was an Elite Guard serving Queen Shadow Maria and Lady Parfrida, back when everything was how it should've been. But no, it's all thanks to you two lovers that our plan was utterly ruined the last time. Even as such, our new Shadow Emperor should be thanking you for one thing: since the whole chain of command collapsed one year ago, as Enigma Shadow's boss in the Orre Region he became the supreme head of the entire organization. Still, you don't know how furious your meddling has made him, and his Generals---myself and another one, who is out on an espionage mission right now---have been tasked with preparing the way for his master plan."

    "Ardos, do you even hear yourself? We weren't brought up that way! We should be trying to stop Enigma Shadow together, not me trying to stop you from helping them!"

    "Silence! Your foolishness will not be tolerated here! And after all, I'm sure you remember our childhood more than that............."

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    A playground. Sand pits and climbing toys of all shapes and sizes were scattered about. Several children, including a very young Ardos and Eldes, were playing on a large, Tentacruel-shaped jungle gym.

    "Hey! Look at me!" young Ardos shouted as he climbed across the monkey bars connecting two of the Tentacruel's tenacles. "I'm floating like an Alakazam!"

    Young Eldes came down the slide and looked up at his brother.

    "Ardos, that's cool! But be careful and don't fall!"

    "I won't fall! In fact, look at THIS!"

    Ardos swung his body over the monkey bars and held himself upside down by his feet.

    "Hahahahah! Ahahahaha! Yay, this is fun!"

    Suddenly, a Nincada appeared right in front of Ardos's face.

    "Nin? Nincada?"

    "Yaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaarrrrrrrggggghhhhhhhhhhhhh!!!!!! !!"

    Ardos flipped over again, fell off the monkey bars face-first into the sand, and was knocked out. The Nincada just jumped down and continued to stare inquisitively at the unconsious boy.

    "Nin cada?"

    "Ardos! For hurting my brother, I'll capture you!" Eldes took a Poké Ball out of his lunchbox and threw it at the Nincada.

    The ball rocked three times, and Eldes caught the bug. A younger Verich, who still had some hair and didn't walk with a cane yet, rushed out of a nearby building.

    "Eldes, what happened to your brother?"

    "He was hanging off the monkey bars upside down when a Nincada appeared in front of him and startled him. He fell off.......but I caught the Nincada!"

    "I'm very proud of you, Eldes. When we go home later, you'll get some candy as a reward......."

    As this was going on, Ardos had awoken and heard the whole thing. Sand covering his face, he looked up, seething in silent rage at his brother and father.....

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    "........ever since that day I've known it to be my destiny to go down a different path than you. They always favored you, even our mother never bothered to tell me who she was until zero hour for Queen Shadow's plan."

    "Wait a minute," Rich cut in. "What does that mean?"

    "Who is your mother?" Anabel asked.

    "Lady Parfrida. She and Master Greevil carried on a short but torrid love affair many years ago. He left her without knowing she was pregnant with Eldes and I.......and as soon as we were born, she dropped us on Master Greevil's front door and disappeared."

    "I've spoken to our mother in her prison cell. She still has no regrets about running Enigma Shadow, unfortunately, however she does regret not trying to reconnect with our father Verich when we were born."

    "'Verich' is not my father. My father is Cipher's Grand Master Greevil."

    "Do you even hear yourself now, Ardos? That's ridiculous! And another thing, don't you remember how generous I was to you when we were younger?"

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Many children were sitting around a long lunch table, including young Ardos and young Eldes. Ardos had a lunchbox with a Snorlax, Electabuzz and Swellow on it, Eldes had one with a Salamence, Marowak, Manectric and Lapras. They both opened their lunchboxes at the same time---inside was rice and some Octillery-shaped sausages.

    "Ooh, lunchtime!" Eldes said in glee. "I'm hungry!"

    "Looks like daddy made us good lunches today," Ardos replied.

    Ardos and Eldes picked up their forks and began eating. Soon, however......

    "Hey! My last Okutan-chan!"

    A young girl with brown hair who looked surprisingly like a young May had forked the last Octillery sausage of the boy with long purple hair sitting next to Ardos.

    "Oh, Harley's so silly! Of course he'll give me this!"

    The May lookalike ate the sausage and ran off. Young Harley gasped and clenched his fists.......then he grabbed Ardos's nearly full lunchbox and ran off with it.

    "Hey! Give me my lunchbox back! Harley, when I get........"

    Ardos got up to go after Harley, but Eldes held him back.

    "Don't get into a fight, Ardos! Here, you can have my lunchbox to replace it."

    Eldes pushed his lunch over to Ardos....................................

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    "......see? We were not brought up to be evil! Now, please, come with me. This is a very dire situation."

    "No. We have already been destined to run our seperate paths. So give up and leave."

    "I...I cannot give up. You must come back with me to Sorbera Island."

    "Ah HA!! I knew you were with them! We were planning an attack on Sorbera Island, and you want to trap me there so you can force me to call it off!"

    "Not in the least! I've come for a very important........" Suddenly, a ringing sound filled the room. "Oh, excuse me."

    Eldes took a boomerang-shaped device from his robes and pushed a button on it. A hologram screen appeared, and on the screen was a Nurse Joy.

    "Hello?"

    "This is the Nurse Joy from Sorbera Island's Pokémon Center. Am I addressing Mr. Eldes Verich?"

    "Y-yes, that is I......."

    "I'm so sorry to have to tell you this, Eldes. Your father has passed away."

    Eldes nearly dropped the communication device in shock. Rich and Anabel's jaws both dropped, and even Ardos became silent.

    "I'm sorry again, Eldes. Do you have a copy of his last will and testament?"

    "..........yes, yes I do. I'll be along shortly to iron out the details. Thank you for all your help, Nurse Joy......"

    Eldes turned off the device and tucked it back into his robes.

    "Are you happy now, Ardos? I came to get you because our father was on his deathbed in Sorbera Island's Pokémon Center. Now he has died without doing the one thing he wanted to most---seeing both his sons for the last time. You should be ashamed of yourself. Now, come along with me. You will see him before the cremation."

    "No. He was no longer my father. My allegiance lays with Enigma Shadow as it always has. The moment you turned him away from me, you both became my enemies."

    Eldes clenched his fists and tried to hold back, but his anger finally caused him to snap.

    "You are lost, then, Ardos! You are a lost soul! What Queen Shadow and our mother did was evil! What this mysterious Shadow Emperor is doing is evil too!"

    "If you stand against me, I will destroy you."

    Ardos snapped both of his wrists forward, popping a Poké Ball from each sleeve into its respective hand.

    "I will do what I must to stop you and your evil master."

    "Eldes, leave it to us. I'll fight him and Snag his Shadow Pokémon."

    "No, Rich. This is between me and him. Ardos, you may think you can win, but your faith in evil and Enigma Shadow shall be your downfall!"

    "Your arrogance blinds you. Even if I should lose, the Emperor is steadily gathering strength. He will become more powerful than either of us."

    "That will remain to be seen. Right now it's only you and me, Ardos."

    Eldes drew two Poké Balls from his belt.

    "This is it!"

    /////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Supertrainer Eldes ---vs.--- Shadow General Ardos
    /////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    [Ardos leaps into the air, spins around, and strikes a ninja-like pose. He then sends out a Shadow Crobat and a creature resembling a Mawile but with two jaws on its head, big red eyes, and spots]

    "What is that? It looks like a mutant Mawile!"

    "What is it is right, Eldes."

    Rich took out his P*DA and scanned the frightening-looking creature.

    "Mapulp, the deciever Pokémon. Type is Steel/Dark, evolved from Mawile by holding Precious Metal in a trade. Mapulp may seem innocent at first, but they will viciously and randomly attack as soon as you drop your guard. Their teeth are constantly growing, and to strength their jaws as well as keep the teeth from getting too long, they often chew on the carcasses of dead opponents. Female Mapulp are known to be flirts with the males, however they usually eat the male after mating."

    "So that thing even eats its mate? Somehow it fits you, Ardos. Go, Hikarijask and Snorlax!"

    Eldes threw the two Poké Balls, sending out a Snorlax and a creature that looked much like a Ninjask but with a shining white aura around it. Rich scanned it with the P*DA.

    "Hikarijask, the savior Pokémon. Type is Bug/Flying. Hikarijask evolve from Ninjask when the Ninjask's trainer has done a selfless deed to help others. Many consider it to have near-legendary status. It has the power to wipe evil from hearts, and is said to be able to instantly purify Shadow Pokémon."

    "Wow.....what an amazing Pokémon...." Anabel said in wonder.

    "You and your voodoo light tricks. Crobat, put that thing in its place with a dose of Shadow Poison!"

    Ardos's Crobat absorbed shadow energy, then fired out a blob of dark sludge at Hikarijask. Surprisingly, the attack did very little.

    "What?!"

    "Surprised? The power of good will stop the power of evil any day. Hikarijask, show him what I mean! Time Bell!"

    Hikarijask gave off a sound that was not unlike that of an angel's singing. Both it and Eldes's Snorlax were powered up by the sound, but the real meaning was the effect it had on Crobat. Shockingly, as Rich viewed it through the Aura Reader the shadowy aura around it faded away.

    "Eldes, what did you do? The Shadow Pokémon aura is gone!"

    "Time Bell is an attack that instantly purifies any Shadow Pokémon that hears it for a short time."

    Ardos gritted his teeth in rage.

    "You can use all those tricks if you want, but you will not prevail! Mapulp, Crunch!"

    Mapulp attacked Hikarijask by crunching on it with both jaws, inflicting a bit of damage.

    "Snorlax, Earthquake!"

    Snorlax lept up into the air and smashed down to create a powerful shock wave. Crobat and Hikarijask weren't affected, but Mapulp was instantly knocked out.

    "....I just realized, that thing is the Nincada that caused me to fall off those monkey bars, isn't it?!!"

    "It's since evolved, but yes, it is."

    "I'll destroy it AND you then! Mapulp, return! Go, Houndoom! Crobat, Shadow Poi---oh yeah, that won't work right now. Sludge Bomb!"

    Crobat launched bursts of sludge at Snorlax, inflicting some damage. It then screeched loudly as the shadow aura overtook it again.

    "Houndoom, Flamethrower!"

    Houndoom loosed a stream of fire from its mouth at Hikarijask.

    "Mirror Coat!"

    Hikarijask's skin glowed brightly like a mirror as the flames hit. It took damage, but bounced most of the attack back to hit Houndoom.

    "Now, Hikarijask, Hidden Power!"

    Yellow orbs surrounded Hikarijask, then it launched them forward to hit Crobat for super-effective damage.

    "Finish them with Rock Slide, Snorlax!"

    Snorlax pounded on the ground, sending rocks flying at Ardos's team. Houndoom managed to dodge, but Crobat wasn't so lucky. It was hit directly and fainted.

    "That's two for me, Ardos."

    "Yeah, I know! Crobat, return. Go, Aerodactyl!"

    Ardos's next Pokémon was a Shadow Aerodactyl.

    "Aerodactyl, Shadow Rush!"

    Ardos's Aerodactyl surrounded itself with the shadowy aura, then dive-bombed Snorlax to cause critical damage.

    "Sludge Bomb!"

    With a feirce roar, Houndoom blasted Snorlax with sludge to knock it out.

    "Alright, Snorlax, take a rest. Go, Metagross! Hikarijask, Assist!"

    Hikarijask glowed, then it used a Psychic attack to do some damage to Aerodactyl.

    "Metagross, Meteor Mash!"

    Metagross floated up to Aerodactyl and swung a claw at it, but missed.

    "Hmph. Aerodactyl, cast out a Shadow Sky!"

    Aerodactyl released a streak of shadow energy into the air. When it hit the chamber's ceiling, it burst into an aura that covered the whole area.

    "Houndoom, Flamethrower again!"

    Houndoom loosed another Flamethrower at Hikarijask, but Eldes just grinned.

    "You'll go down with the ship! Hikarijask, Mirror Coat!"

    When the flames hit Hikarijask, it fainted---but not before reflecting enough of the attack to knock out Houndoom as well.

    "At least I took down that annoying bug. Houndoom, return! Go, Tauros!"

    "I wouldn't count this fight over yet. Hikarijask, you did well. Return. Go, Flygon! Metagross, Meteor Mash again!"

    Metagross flew up and swung at Aerodactyl again, this time hitting it and instantly knocking it out.

    "You've only got one left, Ardos....."

    "And it's my best one! Aerodactyl, return! Go, Kagesei!"

    Ardos's final Pokémon was a Shadow Pokémon that looked like a black and purple Shedinja.

    "Kagesei? What is it?"

    "Eldes, let me scan it and see!"

    Rich took out his P*DA again and scanned Kagesei.

    "This creature is not recognized. No data available."

    "What?! If my P*DA can't recognize it, what kind of species is it then?"

    Ardos chuckled smugly.

    "This is a Pokémon that the Shadow Emperor gave to me. It's one of a kind. We created it by exposing a Shedinja to very high levels of shadow energy. As a result, it evolved into a purely evil creature that cannot be purified. It can even turn regular Pokémon temporarily into Shadow Pokémon!"

    "That's terrible!" Eldes shouted. "How could you be so abusive to your Pokémon?"

    "The Emperor and I share the same opinion. Pokémon are nothing but tools for battle, and therefore their powers should be raised to the highest degree possible. Anything less results in a weak, flawed specimen."

    "You.....you MONSTER!" Anabel screamed. "I'll destroy you myself! I'll----"

    Rich had to once again hold Anabel back from acting on her raging hormones.

    Bursts of light rained down from the shadowy aura, hitting Tauros, Metagross and Flygon.

    "Tauros, use Frustration!"

    Tauros's body glowed bright red, then it smashed into Flygon for very high damage.

    "Grrrr.....I guess it makes sense because you abuse your Pokémon, that Frustration would be so strong. Flygon, Fire Blast!"

    Eldes's Flygon launched a large fireball at Kagesei. It hit, but much to the surprise of everyone but Ardos, it did little.

    "How can that be? Fire attacks defeat Shedinja easily, so shouldn't its evolution......?"

    "That's where you're wrong. My Kagesei is a Dark/Ghost type. No attack is super-effective against it, even Shadow attacks! Now show him what you're capable of! Shadowfication!"

    Kagesei's eyes glowed with a sinister black aura, then Eldes's Metagross began to roar in pain as it was forcibly transformed into a Shadow Pokémon.

    "Metagross! No......I can't let him harm you any more. Return!"

    Eldes took out Metagross's Poké Ball and tried to recall it, but it lept up into the air and fired a Shadow Wave attack right at him. It hit Eldes and knocked him down, so Rich rushed over and helped him back up.

    "Eldes, are you alright?"

    "I'm fine. But my Metagross!"

    "Remember, he said it would be temporary, and you can just use Hikarijask to purify it. For now, beat him at his own game!"

    "You're right. Metagross, use Shadow Rush! Shadow Break! Shadow Rave! Whichever one you're able to!"

    Luckily for Eldes, Metagross had learned Shadow Break, the strongest of the three techniques. It absorbed shadow energy, began glowing with the shadowy aura, then rushed Tauros for a critical knockout blow. Ardos angrily recalled Tauros, then more bursts of light rained down from the shadowy aura. They hit only Flygon this time.

    "Flygon, Crunch!"

    Eldes's Flygon flew forward and crunched on Kagesei. However, once again it did little.

    "Kagesei, let's teach him a lesson now. Ice Beam!"

    Ardos's Kagesei raised its two arms until they formed 90 degree angles to its body, formed an area of supercooled air between them, and fired out an Ice Beam that knocked out Flygon.

    "Flygon!! Return.......go, Latias!"

    "Whoa!" Rich said. "I never knew he had a Latias!"

    "Metagross, Shadow Break again!"

    Metagross again absorbed shadow energy, began giving off the aura, and tackled Kagesei, but instead of being hurt the attack seemed to heal it.

    "How can that be? I hit you directly!"

    "Kagesei's ability is Shadow Absorb. All Shadow attacks replenish its health! I cannot be stopped!"

    More bursts of light rained down, striking Latias.

    "We have to do something! Latias, Dragon Claw!"

    Latias's claw began to glow with a bright green hue, then it glided forth and slashed Kagesei.

    "This is of little concern to me now. Shadowfication!"

    Kagesei again cast Shadowfication, leaving Eldes with a Shadow Latias.

    "Metagross, use Shadow Blitz if you know it!"

    Again Eldes got lucky, his Metagross knew the weakest shadow attack. It hit Kagesei, restoring a small amount of health. More bursts of light rained down from the shadowy aura, but no Pokémon were harmed this time.

    "Latias, whichever one you know: Shadow Blitz, Wave, Rush!"

    Eldes hit luck a third time, as Latias had learned Shadow Blitz as well. The attack restored a small amount of Kagesei's health.

    "Kagesei, hit that dragon with Shadow Ball!"

    Raising its arms again, Kagesei launched a ball of dark energy. It caused quite a bit of damage to Latias.

    "...I'VE GOT IT! Metagross, use Shadow Blitz---on Latias!"

    Metagross turned and attacked Latias, doing very little damage.

    "What's he doing?" Rich wondered.

    "I know! If he doesn't attack Kagesei, its health won't be restored. He just has to wait it out until the effect of Shadowfication wears off!"

    Still more bursts rained down, to no effect, then the aura cleared.

    "Latias, Shadow Blitz!"

    Latias turned to Metagross and attacked it, causing little.

    "Finish off Latias with Shadow Ball!"

    Kagesei launched another Shadow Ball, knocking out Latias.

    "You just helped me win the match, Ardos. Return, Latias! Go, Latios! Metagross, Shadow Blitz on Latios!"

    Metagross used its shadow attack to slightly damage Latios, then it was finally freed from the effect of Shadowfication.

    "Now what, Ardos? You can't use Shadowfication on them both! Latios, Dragon Claw!"

    Latios's claw glowed brightly with a green tint, then it glided forth to slash Kagesei.

    "Ice Beam!"

    Kagesei launched an Ice Beam, hitting and doing decent damage to Latios.

    "Metagross, time to finish this off! Meteor Mash!"

    Metagross raised one of its mighty claws and crashed it down onto Kagesei. Finally, at long last, the battle was over. Kagesei fainted.

    "W-What? My Shadow powers were bested??!!"

    //////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "You do not know what you have done, fool. Now the Factory is lost! We will not be able to make any more Shadow Pokémon for the time being, and the Emperor is going to be furious.......but it's all just fine. If our plan works out as it should, we will own this planet before you can blink. Today I will leave quietly. But don't any of you dare think this is where it ends. I'll exact my revenge on all three of you someday, mark my words. For now, I bid you farewell!"

    A burst of smoke filled the room, and when it cleared Ardos was gone.

    "That was awesome battling, Eldes!" Rich complimented.

    "Thank you......but my father....."

    "It's okay," Anabel comforted. "He's in a better place now, and I'm sure he's looking down and smiling at you for everything you did for him. After all, you came all the way out to Citadark Isle just to fetch your brother, and then you even battled him. All of that was for your father. I'm sure he'd be very happy with you right now."

    "Gee, Anabel, thanks. I feel better already........hm?" Eldes noticed something out of the corner of his eye. "What's this?"

    The three of them walked over to a desk. On the desk was a computer and a disk.

    "'WARNING---Shadow Pokémon Factory Main Computer.' Hey, Anabel. I bet if we put in those three disks we found, it'll shut down the factory."

    "Good idea. Try it."

    Rich put the three disks into the computer, then pressed some buttons on its keyboard.

    "Malfunction in Shadow Pokémon Factory software. Engage production shutdown."

    "Good," Eldes said. "No more Shadow Pokémon. Now, I wonder what's on this disk?"

    Rich picked up the disk, then the three of them retreated to the computer at the entrance. He put it in and pressed some buttons.

    "Dang! Anabel, Eldes, it's heavily encrypted. I can't crack this."

    "Wait," Anabel pointed out, "it's displaying data on that mystery Pokémon. Download it on to your P*DA."

    Rich plugged his P*DA into the computer and downloaded the data. He then downloaded all the encrypted data as well.

    "I know someone who can help," Eldes suggested. "Do you two know Prof. Krane?" Rich and Anabel nodded. "I bet he can help us. Let me ring him up and see."

    Eldes took out his communication device and tapped in a number. Soon, a hologram of Krane appeared.

    "Prof. Krane, Pokémon HQ Lab."

    "Professor, it's Eldes."

    "Eldes! Where are you right now?"

    "I'm on Citadark Isle with Rich and Anabel. We just shut down the Shadow Pokémon Factory."

    "Great! So is there something I can do for you?"

    "We found a data disk that contains a lot of heavily encrypted data. We need someone to decipher it."

    "You've come to the right place. Ordinarily I'd tell you to send it to ONBS, but Enigma Shadow would go there first to find it and delete it. I have a fellow who works at my lab named Datan, he'll be able to crack it. You'd be surprised at how good he's gotten. Send me the data and we'll crack into it for you."

    "Okay. Rich, please place the disk there."

    Eldes pointed to a round plate on the communication device, so Rich put the disk on it. The disk then vanished.

    "Got it, it came through just fine. Listen, Rich, I'll share this with Wes and Michael and we'll work on it. I'll e-mail you anything we find out, and I'll arrange for new data to be downloaded to your P*DA automatically."

    "Thanks, Professor."

    "Gotta go, now. Thank you for everything." Eldes turned off the device and put it away. "Come on, Rich, Anabel. I'll take you back to Sorbera Island."

    "That's good," Anabel replied, "because we wrecked Juna's hydrofoil....."

    "No big deal. Let's just leave this dank island already."






    And so Rich, Anabel and Eldes depart Citadark Isle to return to Sorbera Island. Their stay was eventful. Rich and Anabel battled through the Hexagon Brothers, but it was Eldes who had to face off against his own brother, Ardos, in the climactic clash. Sadly, Eldes's father Verich passed away....a fact that underscored the difference between Eldes and Ardos with their reactions. What will happen when they return to Sorbera Island? Stay tuned!




    END of CHAPTER ELEVEN

  15. #15
    追放されたバカ Nando's Avatar
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    CHAPTER TWELVE: The Pike Queen Cometh



    The docks of Sorbera Island were strangely quiet as Eldes steered his cruiser into its mooring place. Usually the seaport and Arland Beach were packed with people, but for some reason, not a soul was around.

    "Hmmmmm?" Eldes said in wonder as he, Rich and Anabel climbed off the boat. "I haven't been here long, but something doesn't seem right. Where is everyone?"

    "Uh, Rich?"

    "Anabel?"

    "Didn't Ardos say something about Enigma Shadow having a plan to attack Sorbera Island?"

    "You're right! We might have been led to Citadark as a trap!"

    "I fear you are correct," Eldes added. "Do you have any contacts on this island? If you could call someone, perhaps it would shed some light on the situation......"

    "You're right, Eldes. I have Juna's number in my PokéGear....."

    Rich took out his PokéGear and dialed Juna's number.

    "H-Hello? Juna speaking!"

    "Juna, it's Rich! What's going on?"

    "T-they came and.....hey, give it back! That's my PokéGear!"

    "Juna? Juna, answer!"

    "Hmph. Foolish girl," a mysterious female voice said on the other end of the line. "You thought I'd let you keep this? You could call someone, and then they'd find out that we're holed up in Sorbera Colosseum...."

    "Whoever you are, creep, we heard that!" Rich shouted. "Give Juna her PokéGear back at once, and leave this island!"

    "Oh? Oh, you dirty little brat! You called someone already and tricked me! Listen, Rich, I'm going to warn you only once. If you show up here, my underlings and I will smash you. Now, Juna, your PokéGear goes in the mouth of my Seviper!"

    "No! Give it ba----%&)(#)@#J$............."

    The reception suddenly cut off, and the call died.

    "Juna! Juna!! Anabel, Eldes, something has happened at Sorbera Colosseum."

    "I could tell," Anabel replied. "That woman's voice sounded very familiar, as did her claim about Seviper......"

    "Listen. Rich, Anabel, you two go to Sorbera Colosseum and sort out whatever trouble has occurred there. I have to go to the Pokémon Center and make the arrangements to implement my father's will. Good luck."

    "Thank you, Eldes. Come on, Rich, let's get going."

    Eldes split from Rich and Anabel. He headed down the boardwalk towards the Pokémon Center, while they went into town heading for the Colosseum......

    ----------------------------------------------------------------------

    As soon as Rich and Anabel got to the Colosseum, they went inside. Noone was around, except the Nurse Joy at the front desk. They approached her.

    "Hello. Welcome to the Sorbera Colosseum. How may I help you?"

    "My wife and I need to get into the Colosseum," Rich explained. "Something's happened in there."

    "Oh? Sir, are you alright? The Colosseum has been closed for a few days now for maintenance. I'm sorry but I cannot allow you in."

    "You don't understand," Anabel said. "Our friends are trapped in there. Someone is holding them hostage!"

    "Hhmhmhmhm. Surely you don't mean..............." the Nurse Joy ripped off her disguise, revealing herself as a Shadow Peon. "Our operation's been exposed already? I'll have to be stopping you from going in there, then!"

    //////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Pkmn Trainer Rich ---vs.--- Shadow Peon Rena
    //////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "Noone's going in there! Go, Scyther and Nosepass!"

    "I should have known. Go, Salamence and Melodic!"

    "Scyther, use Slash!"

    Rena's Scyther got the first blow in, slashing Melodic to inflict some damage.

    "Hmph, let's not let that get to us. Salamence, Flamethrower!"

    Rich's Salamence loosed a stream of fire from its mouth at Scyther, hitting it hard.

    "Melodic, Surf!"

    Melodic followed up Salamence's attack by summoning a huge wave and crashing it down onto Rena's team. Nosepass took heavy damage, Scyther less so but with the hit it had already taken, Scyther was near fainting.

    "Nosepass, hope we get lucky! Zap Cannon!"

    Nosepass took aim at Melodic as electricity gathered in its large red nose. It then fired a huge ball of electric power at the Water type, causing very high damage and paralyzing it.

    "Yes! Now take another Slash!"

    Scyther slashed Melodic again with its sharp blades. Melodic was near fainting.

    "Salamence, Aerial Ace! Finish that Scyther off!"

    Salamence took flight and smashed its claws into Scyther, knocking it out.

    "Scyther, return! My next choice is........Galaxet!"

    Rena sent out a Shadow Pokémon that looked like a large, gray and dusty planet. It floated calmly near her.

    "Another new Pokémon? Where are you getting these from?"

    Rich scanned the creature with his P*DA.

    "Galaxet, the planet Pokémon. Tyoe is Ghost/Psychic. It is said that Galaxet was first born when a Solrock and Lunatone mated in Hoenn's Meteor Falls during a full moon. As such, it has the power of the lunar rays that shined on its egg. It is an unusual Pokémon in that it can travel through walls despite its solid body."

    "I'd love to know where you get these from. What's your secret?"

    "I'll tell you the secret of my power: NUKES! NUKES NUKES NUKES!!! Galaxet, NUKE him with Shadow Comet!"

    Galaxet glowed with the shadowy aura, then a blast of shadow energy crashed down from the sky onto Melodic, knocking it out.

    "Hahahahaha! The power of NUKES!"

    "Oh, be quiet with your nukes already. Return, Melodic! Go, Ludicolo! Use Surf!"

    Ludicolo created a giant wall of water, which it crashed down onto Rena's team. Nosepass was KO'd while Galaxet took little damage.

    "Alright, I'll have to change weapons. Nosepass, return! Go, Lunatone! Galaxet, Shadow Comet!"

    The Ghost and Psychic type dropped another shadowy comet, this one on Salamence.

    "Lunatone, Ice Beam!"

    Lunatone spun around in the air and launched an icy beam that did severe damage to Salamence.

    "I'm feeling a bit like nuking you now. Salamence, Dragon Claw!"

    Still in the air, Salamence looped around, breathed green flames onto its claws, and slashed Galaxet powerfully.

    "Ludicolo, Hydro Pump!"

    Ludicolo blasted Lunatone with a powerful jet of water, inflicting high damage.

    "Nuke him NOW! Shadow Meteor!"

    Galaxet glowed again with the shadowy aura, but this time it dropped a huge blast of shadow energy on Ludicolo.

    "Ice Beam! NUKE that dragon!"

    Lunatone hit Salamence with another Ice Beam, and indeed, the mighty dragon fell.

    "Damn it, shut up with the nukes already, lady! Return, Salamence. Go, Tyranitar! Thunder Wave!"

    As soon as it came out of its ball, Tyranitar weakly jolted Galaxet with electricity, paralyzing it.

    "Snag Ball, go!"

    Rich threw a Snag Ball at Galaxet. After absorbing its target it fell to the ground and began rocking. It rocked......


    once..........




    twice.........




    .....then the ball burst open and released Galaxet. The Snag had failed.

    "Hahahahaha! Now, Lunatone, NUKE that Ludicolo with Psychic!"

    Lunatone's eyes glowed a bright blue as it lifted Ludicolo into the air with psychic power. It then dropped Ludicolo down to the ground, inflicting a bit of damage.

    "Galaxet, Shadow Meteor!"

    Galaxet couldn't attack, however, due to the paralysis.

    "Tyranitar, use Crunch on Lunatone!"

    Tyranitar dashed forward and crunched on Lunatone with its sharp fangs. The moon-shaped Pokémon fainted.

    "My nukes! Return, Lunatone! The only weapon left in my arsenal is........Solrock! Go!"

    "Snag Ball, go! Get it this time!"

    Rich threw another Snag Ball at Galaxet. It absorbed its target, fell to the ground, and rocked.........



    ......once...............





    ........twice..............





    ......and three times.

    "Galaxet!! Oh, I'm gonna NUKE you now! Solrock, Overheat!"

    Solrock superheated the air around its body, then it spun into Ludicolo and knocked it out with a critically-hitting heat tackle.

    "Ludicolo, return! Go, Alakazam! Use Ice Punch!"

    Alakazam popped out of its Poké Ball and smashed its icy fist into Solrock.

    "Tyranitar, follow up with Crunch!"

    Tyranitar crunched on Solrock, leaving the sun-shaped creature with little health left.

    "Solrock, if we have to go out, let it be with a bang! NUKE 'EM! EXPLOSION!!!"

    Solrock absorbed energy into its body, then let it out in an explosive blast. It fainted along with Alakazam, but Tyranitar wasn't hurt badly.

    "NUKES! NUKES NUKES NUKES!!!!!!!! My nukes!!"

    /////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "Awwww, you nuked my nukes! I hope the Admin in charge nukes you good!"

    Rena ran off.

    "Wow, Anabel, that was disturbing."

    "It sure was. Now we have to free Juna and the others!"

    "Right."

    They began walking towards the arena's gate, but suddenly Rich stopped and walked over to a nearby Healing Machine.

    "I'd better heal my Pokémon, the battles in there will be tough."

    Rich put his six Poké Balls into the machine, let it do its work, then took them out and clipped them back on his belt.

    "Ready now?" Anabel asked.

    "Yes. Let's go."

    Rich and Anabel continued to the arena's gate. When they got there they opened the doors and went inside...........
    Inside the Colosseum, Ash, Misty, May, Max, Juna and Ragen were all tied up and put against the side of the arena. The female ONBS reporter and her cameraman were arguing with a tall, brown-haired woman in the center of the arena, a woman wearing a short purple top and low black pants---which left her midsection exposed---and purple gloves. A male Shadow Peon stood next to her.

    "The answer is NO!" the reporter shouted. "You won't get our tapes!"

    "Do you fail to understand what I have told you?" the woman responded. "If word gets out that we have taken over Sorbera Island, it will be terrible for the Emperor's plan. Snidle, please explain."

    "Of course, Mistress Lucy! If the tapes get out and all of Orre sees them, it will harm our operation on Sorbera Island by 79% and Enigma Shadow's overall plan by 62%. That, of course, will lead to a 44% increase in the Emperor's anger, causing the rest of us to have to put in 27% more work. So, for efficiency's sake, hand the tapes ov---"

    "Rich! Anabel! Help us!" Juna screamed as Rich and Anabel entered.

    "Silence!" Lucy screeched before turning around to face Rich and Anabel. "Well look what the Persian dragged in. Rich and Anabel."

    "Give it up, Lucy. Let them go!"

    "I should've known it was you from the PokéGear call!"

    "I know everything that happened on Citadark Isle. If it wasn't for that meddling fool Eldes, General Ardos would've held you two up long enough for me to finish my own mission. Nevertheless, you're not freeing this bunch here easily."

    "I'm the Leader of Cerulean Gym!" Misty screamed. "What gives you the right to--"

    "Be quiet, girl. You and your friends aren't going anywhere. Snidle, dispose of these pests!"

    "Right away, Mistress!"

    ///////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Pkmn Trainer Rich ---vs.--- Shadow Peon Snidle
    ///////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    "There is a 0% chance of you winning. That is because the odds are 100% that my first two Pokémon shall be.......Swellow and Mr. Mime!"

    "First that girl with her nukes, and now you running all these percentages? Gah, you people are strange. Go, Salamence and Alakazam!"

    "Swellow, Hyper Beam!"

    Swellow flew upwards a few feet as it gathered power, then it attacked with a massive energy beam. Alakazam got hit extremely hard, having good luck to not have been knocked out.

    "Good work, Alakazam, weathering that blow. Gives us a nice chance for a counterstrike. Ice Punch!"

    Alakazam recovered from the blow and hit Swellow with an icy punch, inflicting high damage.

    "Crunch that mime!"

    Salamence rushed forward with fangs bared, and crunched on Mr. Mime powerfully.

    "There is a 98% chance my Mr. Mime will make you pay for that. Ice Punch!"

    Mr. Mime clenched its broad hands into fists, then delivered an icy blow directly to Salamence's face. It was a critical hit, and Salamence fainted.

    "What? Salamence, no!"

    "I gauge a 31% increase in your frustration level."

    "First one of your statistics that was correct. Salamence, return! Go, Tyranitar! Alakazam, finish Swellow off with a Psybeam!"

    Rich's Alakazam crossed its spoons, and from them came a bright beam of light. The beam struck Swellow and knocked it down, defeating it.

    "That's a 100% knockout there, peon."

    "The stats are MINE! Lay off! Return, Swellow. Go, Aipom!"

    Snidle's next Pokémon was a Shadow Aipom.

    "Mr. Mime, Magical Leaf!"

    Snidle's Mr. Mime waved its hands, sending glowing leaves out to hit Tyranitar.

    "Aipom, attack with Shadow Rush and take out that Alakazam!"

    The Aipom began glowing with the shadowy aura, then it jumped forward and spun around to smack Alakazam with its tail, knocking it out.

    "These peons are getting tougher, I've noticed. Alakazam, return! Go, Ludicolo! Tyranitar, Crunch!"

    Tyranitar crunched down on Mr. Mime, finally taking the psychic type out.

    "This is troubling me by 71%....return, Mr. Mime! Go, Weepinbell!"

    "Ah, now this is the kind of thing I expect from you guys. Ludicolo, Ice Beam!"

    Ludicolo fired out a beam of ice from its mouth, instantly knocking out Weepinbell.

    "Heheheheheh. I just rang your Weepinbell didn't I?"

    "That bad joke decreased the quality of what you say by 18%. Return, Weepinbell! It's 100% on you now Buoysel!"

    Snidle's fifth and final Pokémon was also his second Shadow Pokémon, a Shadow Buoysel.

    "Hmmm. I've seen Buoysel before but I think I'd better scan it anyway....."

    Rich scanned the Buoysel with the P*DA.

    "Buoysel, the sea weasel Pokémon. Type is Water. Buoysel are adept swimmers and can swim in any sea current no matter how strong. They often live peacefully alongside other sea Pokémon like Seel and Pelipper. The only time they ever bother others is to hunt, which is when they dive to catch small fish. Its buoy-like fins then help it return to the surface quickly."

    "That's right! Now I'll hit you with shadow attacks that are 54% stronger! Aipom, Shadow Break!"

    Aipom absorbed shadow energy, began giving off the shadowy aura, and tackled Ludicolo.

    "Do the same, Buoysel! Shadow Rave!"

    Snidle's Buoysel launched out spikes of shadow energy, hitting both of Rich's Pokémon.

    "Tyranitar, Thunder Wave!"

    Rich's Tyranitar weakly jolted Buoysel with electricity, paralyzing it.

    "Now, Ludicolo, hit it with Giga Drain---but leave a little left!"

    With amazing speed, Ludicolo rushed at Buoysel and caught it in its grip. Ludicolo then began draining the Shadow Pokémon's energy, not letting go until Buoysel was near fainting.

    "Grrrrrrr.....my own fury is raising to the critical level of 86.2%......Aipom, Shadow Break again!"

    Once more, Aipom absorbed energy before giving off the shadowy aura and tackling Tyranitar.

    "Buoysel, Shadow Rave!"

    Buoysel couldn't attack, however, due to the paralysis.

    "Tyranitar, cast another Thunder Wave!"

    This time it was Aipom who was paralyzed by Tyranitar's weak jolt.

    "That'll do! Snag Ball, go!"

    Rich threw a Snag Ball at the Buoysel. After absorbing its target the ball fell to the floor..........



    It rocked once.........




    Rocked twice............




    ........and the final time. Rich had successfully Snagged another Shadow Pokémon.

    "Oh no! 50% of my remaining team is gone! Aipom, Shadow Rush!"

    Aipom again tackled Tyranitar while giving off the shadowy aura.

    "This is just about wrapped up now. Tyranitar, use Rock Slide to soften it up."

    Tyranitar drilled the ground with its claw, kicking up large rocks at Aipom. The Shadow Pokémon was hit hard.

    "That's it! Snag Ball, go!"

    The second Snag Ball was aimed at Aipom, and it began rocking after absorbing its target and falling to the ground.


    One time...........





    Two times............





    ................and three times.

    "Oh noooooo! My calculations are completely screwed up!"

    ///////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    Snidle ran off, leaving Lucy fuming. The reporter turned to her cameraman.

    "That was a great battle!" she said. "Cameran, did you manage to get that?"

    "N-no......" Cameran responded. "I'm scared to the spot by the Seviper lady, Marcia!"

    "Damn it! Always keep the camera rolling, haven't I taught you----"

    "Silence!" Lucy shouted. "There's nothing worth taping here because those tapes won't escape my grasp!" Lucy turned to Rich and Anabel. "As for you two, I've had quite enough of your meddling. If I bash you in now, the Emperor will promote me to General. Shadow General Lucy....I like the sound of that."

    "Dream on!" Anabel angrily countered. "Shouldn't you be off somewhere decorating a room with ugly red curtains and Seviper statues instead of this?"

    "Y-You! How dare you speak to me so! I daresay that if I should be doing bad interior design.......well, from your appearance it would seem you never get out of bed!"

    "Why, you.....!"

    Once again, Anabel had to be held back by Rich.

    "Don't do it, Anabel! It's not worth it!"

    "Grrrr.....that's right, you're not worth it! But I sure would like to beat one of you upside the head one of these days!"

    "Don't play games like that, foolish girl. You're thinking with your reproductive organs instead of your brain, and it's going to get you into a world of hurt if you keep it up. But then again, if you keep meddling in our plans, that world of hurt will come to you anyway."

    "I hate to tell you," Rich said, "but we are not leaving now. There will never be a Shadow General Lucy."

    "I fully intend to reach that rank. In fact, it's the first step on my dream of becoming the new Queen Shadow."

    "Queen Shadow Lucy?! I've got to laugh at that!"

    "I see. So you're going to stand by your girl in your foolishness and try to resist me? You're brave, I'll concede that. Unfortunately for you, braveness doesn't win battles. Prepare to lose!"
    ///////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
    Pkmn Trainer Rich ---vs.--- Shadow Admin Lucy
    //////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    [Lucy pulls a needle flower from her belt, spin-jumps into the air, throws it down, and lands. She then sends out a pair of Seviper, one of which is a Shadow Pokémon]

    "I should have expected nothing different from you. Go, Alakazam and Tyranitar! Alakazam, Psychic!"

    "Protect....."

    Alakazam began to attack Seviper with psychic power, but the snake put up a Protect to block.

    "Fufufu......well done.....now, Iron Tail....."

    Seviper's tail shined with a metallic glow, then it flung itself forward and tried to hit Tyranitar with it. However, the attack missed.

    "Useless Iron Tail.....Seviper, Shadow Down!"

    The Shadow Seviper sent out a wave of dark energy spores. These spores attached themselves to Rich's Pokémon to lower their defensive power.

    "Tyranitar, let's target that Shadow Seviper first. Thunder Wave!"

    Rich's Tyranitar weakly jolted Shadow Seviper with electricity, paralyzing it.

    "Alakazam, I doubt she can pull off another Protect, so use Psychic again!"

    "We'll see about that......

    Much to Rich's shock, Seviper did manage to Protect itself again from the attack.

    "Fufufu......I didn't represent the Luck Symbol for nothing........Iron Tail!"

    This time, Seviper's Iron Tail hit Tyranitar square in the chest, inflicting quite a bit of damage.

    "Ah....just as I had intended. Seviper, Shadow Half."

    Shadow Seviper sent out blades of the shadow energy, halving the health of all four Pokémon in the battle.

    "Thank you. Alakazam, she can't get Protect to work a third time! Psybeam!"

    "Fufufu....."

    Alakazam crossed its spoons and fired a multicolored beam of light at the non-shadow Seviper. It tried to put up a third Protect....but failed. It was easily knocked out.

    "So even my luck runs out on occasion....it won't matter in the end. Return, Seviper. Go, Onix!"

    "Tyranitar, Dragon Claw on the other Seviper!"

    Tyranitar breathed green flames onto its claw before slashing Shadow Seviper powerfully. It was now very close to fainting.

    "Onix, rid me of that annoying Alakazam. Body Slam!"

    Lucy's Onix slammed its huge bulk down on Alakazam, knocking it out.

    "Alakazam, return! Let's see here....next I'll choose.......Salamence! Go! Go and use Hydro Pump!"

    Salamence burst from its Poké Ball and fired a jet of water from its mouth at Onix, but missed.

    "Hahaha. Pathetic attempt at attacking....."

    "Oh, you're the one whose attack was pathetic. ♪ Snag Ball, go!"

    With a quick whistle, Rich threw a Snag Ball at the severly weakened Seviper. It was easily absorbed, and after three rocks of the ball it belonged to Rich.

    "My....my lovely Sevipers......how dare you! Now you shall pay! Go, Gyarados!"

    Lucy replaced her now-gone Shadow Seviper with a shiny red Shadow Gyarados. Rich knew this was not an opponent to be trifled with.

    "A..A red Gyarados? But how?"

    "Fufufu. You could say General Ardos favored me when he oversaw its production."

    "Yeah, I'm sure!" Anabel suddenly screamed. "You probably ****ed him to get it!"

    Lucy's eyes went wide at Anabel's remark.

    "You! How did you find out about.....did he tell you?!"

    "You might call it a lucky guess," Anabel responded smugly.

    "Damn it! Damn it, damn it, damn it! I can't let you out of here knowing I slept with General Ardos to get a special Shadow Pokémon! If the Emperor finds out my job is toast! Gyarados, cloak us up with a Shadow Sky!"

    Gyarados fired a streak of shadow energy into the air. When it hit the Colosseum's ceiling it burst into a shadowy aura that covered the whole chamber.

    "Onix, use Iron Tail to get rid of that Tyranitar!"

    Onix smashed its tail into Tyranitar, taking it down.

    "Grrrr....you aren't bad, Lucy....return, Tyranitar! Guess it'll be....Ludicolo! Let's go!"

    Rich sent out Ludicolo, then bursts of light rained down from the shadowy aura. They hit Onix, Ludicolo and Salamence.

    "Salamence, use another Hydro Pump! We've got to take Onix down!"

    The dragon managed to get the correct aim this time, hitting Onix with a flood of water and knocking it out.

    "Onix, no! How dare you, brat! Return......Now, go, Beedrill! Gyarados, muck them up with Shadow Mist!"

    Gyarados took a deep breath, then exhaled a shadowy cloud over Rich's team.

    "Ludicolo, try to hit Gyarados with an Ice Beam if you can!"

    Ludicolo did attempt to hit Gyarados, but its Ice Beam missed and went flying up into the shadowy aura, hitting something with a smash. A frozen spotlight came crashing down near Lucy just then, but she jumped out of the way.

    "So now you're trying to hit me with the environment?"

    "No, not at all! Your Shadow Mist threw my aim off!"

    "Yeah, sure. And you call me the villain? Bah. Beedrill, send a Sludge Bomb heading that Ludicolo's way."

    "Heh. Ludicolo, remember our training with Miror B. Dance right through the Shadow Mist and out of its way!"

    Beedrill fired a lump of sludge into the cloud of Shadow Mist, but Ludicolo easily dodged it by dancing in and out of the cloud. However, only Rich could see this---Lucy thought it had made contact. More bursts of flashing light rained down, hitting the three non-Shadows.

    "Salamence, Fire Blast!"

    Salamence launched a massive fireball that burst out of the cloud and caught Beedrill off guard. The Bug and Poison type was instantly knocked out.

    "B-Beedrill!!! Return, I guess. Fufufu....last but certainly not least......go, Medicham!"

    Lucy's last Pokémon was a Shadow Medicham.

    "Gyarados, use Shadow Rush to finish off Ludicolo!"

    Lucy's red Gyarados surrounded itself with the shadowy aura and tried to tackle Ludicolo, but missed.

    "Hahahah!!! Ludicolo, hit it with Thunderpunch now that it's close!"

    Lucy still couldn't see what was going on inside the cloud, but she knew it wasn't good when Gyarados was knocked backwards with a crackling sound and instantly knocked out. Ludicolo had scored a critical hit with its Thunderpunch.

    "G-Gyarados?!! What just happened?!"

    "Salamence, we won't be needing the cover anymore. Blow it away."

    Salamence flapped its wings, blowing away the cloud of Shadow Mist---and showing Lucy that Ludicolo was still as healthy as it was when it came out.

    "I used your Shadow Mist for cover. Beedrill and Gyarados never knew what happened!"

    "Grrrrrrrrr.......and after everything I did to get my special Gyarados, you destroy it like that? Return! Medicham, Shadow Break!"

    Medicham absorbed shadow energy, began giving off the aura, and rushed into Ludicolo to inflict quite a bit of damage. Still more bursts of light rained down, striking Ludicolo and Salamence.

    "Salamence, Crunch!"

    Salamence rushed forward with fangs bared and crunched on Medicham. The Psychic and Fighting type took high damage.

    "Ludicolo, use Ice Punch to finish this up!"

    By punching Medicham with an icy fist, Ludicolo managed to freeze it solid while weakening it further.

    "No! Medicham, Shadow Break!"

    Frozen solid, Medicham could not attack. The effects of Shadow Sky once again afflicted Salamence and Ludicolo.

    "This is the end of you, Lucy! Snag Ball, go!"

    Rich threw a Snag Ball. It absorbed the frozen, weakened Medicham easily, then fell to the floor and began rocking.


    It rocked once........





    ....twice........






    .......and three times.

    "Aiyeeeeh! After all my work, all my dreams are finished!"

    /////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

    Lucy stomped her foot in anger.

    "You foolish brats don't know what you've done now. Interfering with our plans.....defeating my Pokémon......and you, girl, how dare you insult me! Clearly you do not understand what it takes to get ahead in life..."

    "Oh, I understand," Anabel replied with a smirk on her face. She delighted in taking a moment before finishing. "But I think it's you with the problem, since you only know how to get a head........"

    "SHUT UP YOU DISGUSTING BRAT!!!!! If my Gyarados wasn't fainted I would feed BOTH of you to it right now! But no. I will leave this time, but don't think it's over yet. Next time we meet, I'll beat you both into pulps. Farewell!"

    Lucy ran off.

    "Go say hi to your lover Ardos!" Anabel shouted after her, with a big grin.

    "You've got a dirty mouth," Rich teased.

    "She deserved it, though. Even back on the Frontier she was that way....I heard she got her job there by sleeping with Scott."

    "Now THAT'S disgusting...."

    The reporter approached Rich and Anabel.

    "That was great!" she said. "Electrifying! Cameran, you got it that time, right?"

    "Heheheh. Got it all, Marcia."

    "Great! Allow me to introduce myself. I'm Marcia, and this is my assistant Cameran. We're ONBS employees, and we were here covering the Sorbera Colosseum battles when Lucy and her goons trapped us."

    Cameran went off to free Juna and the others while Rich and Anabel spoke with Marcia.

    "Did you happen to learn anything from them when you were held prisoner?" Rich asked.

    "Not much. She was fuming that you two had already left for Citadark, so I guess she had hoped to trap you from going ther---" Marcia's PokéGear suddenly rang. "Sorry, excuse me." She took it out and pressed the button to activate it. "Hello?"

    "Marcia! I'm so glad you're safe! Eldes told us of trouble on Sorbera Island!"

    "Secc, I'm fine. Rich and Anabel came and chased the Shadow Admin and her goons away."

    "I have bad news. Wes just called, Enigma Shadow......."

    "What? What happened?"

    "Enigma Shadow dumped about a hundred carcasses of dead Ponyta and Miltank on his ranch. They left a note that said "These Pokémon died testing a new, ultra-powerful strain of Pokérus. They couldn't handle its power, but our ultimate Shadow Pokémon will.""

    "That......That's disgusting! Horrible!"

    "They did THAT to the stolen Pokémon?!" Anabel screamed in rage. "Why, when I get my hands on them........."

    "Marcia, just get back to the ONBS Skyscraper as soon as you can and file whatever footage you've got. Bye."

    Secc hung up, so Marcia put away the PokéGear. Juna and Ragen approached.

    "Rich, thank you," Juna said gratefully. "If it wasn't for you and Anabel we'd be stuck with that horrible woman.....hm? Anabel, why so glum all of a sudden?"

    "We wrecked your hydrofoil on Citadark Isle....."

    "Hohoho, no worries. Once you bring Enigma Shadow's leader to justice, replacing it will be a small task."

    Rich's P*DA rang, so he took it out and opened the new e-mail.

    [=============================================]
    From: Professor Krane, HQ Lab
    Subject: New Data!

    Hi Rich,

    Datan managed to decode part of that data disk you gave
    us. It says that Enigma Shadow's plan involves something
    hidden in the Emerald Ruins deep in Orre's desert. I've
    programmed this message to download its location to your
    P*DA. It's near the old Cipher Lab. Just go west from Gateon
    Port to reach it.

    Good luck!
    Krane
    [=============================================]

    "The Emerald Ruins, eh?" Ragen said. "Here. I've got a device that may help you."

    Ragen handed Anabel an odd device that looked like a giant lollipop.

    "What is it?" she asked. "It looks like a Trozei Beamer."

    "No. That's a Symbol Decoder. I used it when I explored the Emerald Ruins. It helps to decode the ancient writing and symbols inside."

    "Thank you. Anabel, are we ready to set out to the Ruins then?"

    "Yes. We can get a ride with Eldes, or we can take the ferry."

    "Good. Juna, thank you for all your help. Ragen, Ash, Misty, May, Max....you too."

    "I wish you the best of luck," Juna said. "We all will."

    With that, Rich and Anabel left the Colosseum on their way back to the mainland and their next adventure.........





    Rich saved Sorbera Island and his friends from a terrible fate by defeating Lucy of Enigma Shadow in Sorbera Colosseum. Now heading to the mysterious Emerald Ruins, is Rich ready for the challenges that await him there? Stay tuned!


    END of CHAPTER TWELVE

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