The Dragon Master IV: Chapter One

Misty and I are sitting atop the Goldenrod City Radio Tower, watching the sunrise and observing the city coming alive in the morning. The sunrise was beautiful, but Misty was even more beautiful. Misty and I had been together for three years, and we were both seventeen years of age. I am still the Pokemon League Champion, and Misty supports me through every battle, and there have been many of those. The year was 2005, and things were going perfectly. Misty and I had been sitting there for about two hours, not doing anything. I turned my head to look at Misty.
“Misty, you look so beautiful right now,” I told her. She blushed, and turned to look at me.
“You were always good at whispering sweet nothings in my ear,” she said. “Bob, you are the best guy a girl could ask for.” We both leaned in, and we kissed. I gathered up the courage for what I was about to do.
“Misty, I gotta ask you something,” I asked her.
“What’s that,” she said.
“How would you go about asking someone to marry you,” I asked her. She looked oddly at that question.
“Well,” she said. “I would go up to him, get down on one knee, and ask ‘Will you marry me?’”
“Yes, I will,” I said, pulling out a small jewel case. I opened the jewel case, and inside, there was a ring. The ring had two precious stones on it. There was a blue one, which was a sapphire, and a teal one, which was an aquamarine.
“Oh, Bob,” she said in awe. “It’s beautiful. Oh my God. Bob, of course I’ll marry you.” I took the ring out of the box and carefully placed it on her ring finger. We kissed, and then we broke apart.
“I love you, Misty,” I said to my fiancé.
“I love you, too, Bob,” Misty said. We kissed again. “But why didn’t you just come out to say it?”
“I wanted you to ask me,” I said.
“Why on earth would you want that to happen,” Misty asked.
“Well, if our marriage ever failed,” I said. “Which it won’t. It would have been your fault because you asked me.”
“You little,” Misty started in rage. I just sat there smiling, and she smiled too. “You little angel.” We kissed again, and continued to watch the sunrise. We stayed there all day, until the sunset came upon us. When it was time for sunset, we flew to back to Palace of the Elite Four, as everybody was most likely wondering where we were.
When we came into the meeting room for all the Masters, everybody was clearly waiting for us to arrive.
“Where have you two been,” Koga demanded of us when we walked in the room. “We have been waiting for you two for three hours! We tried to call your cell phone, but it said that it was shut off! You should keep your cell phone on at all times in case something comes up!” I walked past him, ignoring him, with Misty’s hand in mine.
“Everybody, we have an announcement,” I said loudly, knowing that Koga was extremely angry at the moment. “Misty and I are engaged!” Everybody went wild. All of the women ran up to Misty, asking if they could see the ring. I, on the other hand, was being bombarded with questions and congratulations from the guys.
“So you’re gonna tie the knot,” Morty said, clapping me on the back.
“I always knew this day would come,” Brock said, his eyes getting wet from him starting to cry.
“Congratulations,” Falkner said, shaking my hand. I looked over at Ash, who was standing by the door all alone. He walked out of the door, leaving all of the celebrating people. I had an idea of why Ash left, but I still couldn’t see why he couldn’t be happy for Misty and me.
Later on that evening, Misty and I was sitting in our room, or what used to be my room.
“Why don’t you go and get me a hairbrush,” my fiancé asked me.
“Okay,” I said, kissing her on the cheek, and I started to walk out of the room. “Misty, I love you.”
“I love you more,” she said, lying on the bed, waiting for me to return. I walked out of the room with a huge smile on my face. I was getting married to the woman of my dreams soon! I walked into the bathroom, opened the drawer, and grabbed a hairbrush out of it for Misty. After I gave her this, I had to find Ash. I needed to talk to him about this. I walked back into Misty’s and my room, and I was shocked to see what I saw: nothing. There was nobody in there, and there was nothing in there. Actually, there was only one thing. There was a note lying on the bed. I sprinted over, and picked it up. It read:
Bob,
I have taken Misty. She is perfectly fine, and will remain that way if you do anything and everything I say. One mistake, and your fiancé dies. This is not some ransom note that wants you to pay so much money to see your love again. If you ever want to see her again, come to the Trainer Gym in Viridian City tomorrow at noon. If you are followed, she dies. Further instructions await you there. Until then,

The Man in the Black Trench Coat
“Bob, what’s the matter,” Duplica asked as she walked in. I turned to look at her, and she saw the letter in my hand. Something fell off of it. It must have been taped to the back of the letter; the engagement ring. I picked it up, created a teal chain that went through it, and put the necklace around my neck.
“What’s going on,” Brock asked as he also walked in.
“Bob won’t tell me anything,” Duplica said, shrugging her shoulders.
“Bob, what’s going on,” Brock asked. I simply brushed past them both, handing Duplica the letter. Her eyes skimmed over it as fast as possible, without letting me get away from her sight.
“Oh my God,” Duplica gasped, one hand over her mouth and one holding the letter. “Misty’s been kidnapped by a man in a trench coat!”
“I’m coming,” Brock said. He started to follow me, but I stopped and turned around.
“I have to go alone, Brock,” I said. “If someone else follows me, he will kill her. She is my reason for living right now. If anything happened to her…” I started to tear up. Duplica came up behind me, and put her hand on my shoulder.
“Bob, go out and find Misty,” Duplica said. “We’ll hold down the fort here.” I turned around to look at her, my eyes silver.
“Thank you,” I said. I called my wings and took off towards Viridian City. I had to find Misty. I had to bow to this madman’s wishes. I wanted to rip him from limb to limb, but he could have accomplices. I couldn’t gamble with Misty’s life.
I landed in Viridian City at about 3 o’clock in the morning, and walked over to the Trainer Gym. There was a letter on the door, identical to the one found in my room. It read:
Bob,
I knew that you would show up early. You were going to try and catch me in the act. Not a smart thing to do, as I do have an accomplice. I’ll dismiss this attempt to save your love. Anyway, here are your next instructions. There is a suitcase inside the Gym of Viridian City, the one that you assigned to your mother, Lorelei. This briefcase is very important to me. Go inside and take it. Bring it to me on top of the Lavender Town Radio Tower. Do not look in it, or your soon-to-be-wife will die. I will be waiting for you there with your fiancé. Until then,

The Man in the Black Trench Coat
I punched the door down. I was so angry with him. I suddenly felt like I was being watched. I quickly ran towards my mother’s Gym. She lived in there, so I pounded on the door, waiting to come in. Lorelei came to the door and opened it.
“What’s the matter, son,” my mother said when she saw me.
“Did you receive a briefcase today,” I asked in a hurry.
“Yes,” she said, wondering what was going on.
“I need it,” I said.
“Why do you need it,” Lorelei asked me.
“It’s very important,” I persisted. “It’s a matter of life or death. Please, Mom.” She looked like she was thinking.
“Fine,” she said. She pulled out a briefcase from out behind the door and handed it to me.
“Thank you so much, Mom,” I said, kissing my mother on the cheek and flying off towards Lavender Town.
I landed on top of the Lavender Town Radio Tower about an hour later. And there he was, standing on top of the tower about twenty feet separating the both of us.
“You came,” said an unnaturally familiar voice. I should know who it was, but I didn’t.
“Where’s Misty,” I ordered.
“Where’s the briefcase,” he retaliated.
“Right here,” I said, holding the case.
“Slide it over here,” the man said.
“What makes me so sure that you’ll give me Misty once I give you the case,” I asked of him.
“I’ll give her to you once I find out what’s in the briefcase,” the man in the black trench coat said. “You have no guarantee. Except that I won’t kill her just because what I want isn’t in there. But if you don’t give it to me, then I will kill her.” I had no choice. I put the briefcase on its side, and kicked it over to him, my hands in the air. He knelt down, and then got back up.
“What’s the matter,” I asked, my hands still in the air.
“You see this,” the man said, pulling out what looked like a remote. “If you try anything funny, I will press this button. Right now, your fiancé is directly by 15 pounds of C4. That is enough to destroy Goldenrod City. So if I were you, I wouldn’t try anything funny.” He knelt back down to the briefcase. He opened it, and I could tell he was smiling.
“Is that what you want,” I asked.
“Yes,” he said. “It’s perfect.” He took out a small black package, and threw it at me. I saw that there were numbers on it. They were counting down! 5…4…3…2…1…BOOM! An explosion knocked me off the building, and I was falling uncontrollably…
- End of Chapter One -

The Dragon Master IV: Chapter Two

I woke up, on the ground surrounded by a crowd of people and reporters. I looked up to see if the Radio Tower was still there, but it had been demolished by the blast. Luckily, nobody was injured, as no one was there.
“Master Bob,” one reporter said. “What brings you to Lavender Town?”
“What happened to the Radio Tower,” another asked.
“Why were you unconscious,” yet another reported asked me.
“Go away, all of you,” a familiar voice said. It was Bruno, the third of the Elite Four and the Master of Fighting. “Get out of here now, before I should use any force. Are you okay, Bob?” Bruno helped me to my feet, and I walked alongside of him. He led me to a car, and I got in, followed by him.
“Thank you, Bruno,” I said quietly. He looked at me, but I was staring off into space, ignoring that famous stare of his.
“Duplica and Brock told me what happened,” Bruno said. “I’m sorry. I know how much you loved Misty. And I-”
“Love,” I shouted, finally looking at him. “Not ‘loved’. I still love her, and she is not gone yet. With God as my witness, I will find her, alive. And I will kill whoever took her from me. I will make sure of it, or die trying.” Bruno shook his head.
“Bob,” Bruno said, looking at me with sympathy. “Can’t you see? It’s all a trap to kill you. Once you’re dead, Misty will die too. And without you, the League will never be as strong as it is now. Bob, I know how you feel. You lost your adoption mother, and then your half-brother, and you don’t want to lose anybody else.”
“YOU WILL NEVER KNOW HOW I FEEL,” I erupted at Bruno. In turn he yelled back.
“OR IS IT THAT YOU WILL NEVER KNOW WHAT I FEEL,” Bruno shouted back. “I LOST MY WIFE, ALL BECAUSE OF THIS DAMN LEAGUE! SHE WAS ALL THAT EVER MATTERED! SO DON’T GO FEELING SORRY FOR YOURSELF BECAUSE YOU LOST YOUR FIANCE! GO OUT AND DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT!” I was in shock. I suddenly felt a huge pang of guilt in my stomach.
“I’m sorry, Bruno,” I said. “I never knew. You’re right. Sitting around and feeling sorry for myself won’t do anything. It won’t save anyone.” I was even more shocked to see that Bruno was close to tears.
“Bob,” Bruno said, wiping away his tears. “Go out and save her. Every one of us has somebody else for us in this world. Misty is yours. Mine is gone. Life is funny sometimes, isn’t it?”
“Yeah it is,” I said. I moved forward and hugged Bruno tight.
“Go out and find your fiancé,” Bruno said.
“Driver,” I said, pounding on the window. “Pull over.”
“Yes, sir,” said the driver. The car slowed to a stop, and I got out, looked at Bruno one last time, and shut the door. The car accelerated, and drove out of sight. Out of nowhere, a piece of paper flew down and landed in front of me. The writing on it was awfully familiar. I picked it up, and it read:
Bob,
You made it out. That surprised me. I mean, wow, I didn’t think that you could live through that. You’ve survived numerous injuries, and you can add this one to your list.
Anyway, I’m sure that you are still thoroughly pissed at me. But, now you’re wondering ‘Who could do this?’ and ‘Why would they do this?’ The answer is simple enough: I want you dead. Three encounters with Lance, and you’ve survived them all. What is your secret? Perhaps it’s that damn medallion. I know that that gives you the power greater than all other Masters combined. Quite the useful ally, isn’t it? Now, down to business:
Go to the Master’s cemetery. I will be waiting for you there. Until then,

The Man in the Black Trench Coat
In anger, I ripped the paper up. Why would he be in the Master’s Cemetery? I thought. If he was against the League, how could he have access there?
“I don’t have time for this,” I said aloud, to no one in particular. “I have to save Misty.” I threw off my cloak, called my wings, and flew off for Indigo Plateau. Perhaps Misty would be there, and I could catch him off guard. I rocketed along the plains, moving anything that was in my way. I felt like I was going faster than the speed of light. But I know that that was impossible. I also knew what wasn’t impossible; that was finding Misty alive.
I arrived, seeing the man in the black trench coat standing by a grave. I noticed which grave he was standing by. He was standing by my half-brother’s grave. I landed down in fury, putting a dent in the ground.
“Ah, you came,” said the man.
“Get away from there,” I said, both my teeth and my fists clenched.
“Temper, temper,” the man said, waving his finger. “That’s something that you should really learn how to control. If you lose it, you lose your fiancé.” I backed down, remembering why I was doing this in the first place.
“What do you want,” I asked hopelessly. “I have little to offer.”
“You killed your own brother,” the man said, ignoring my question. Now that I had realized it, he wasn’t that tall. He was shorter than me.
“I didn’t know,” I said, looking down to the ground. “Had I known that John was my brother, his blood would have never been shed.” The man gasped.
“You fell remorse for Flargini,” the man said, astonished. “He took over the League! He would have killed you, given the chance.”
“He was also in the blind,” I said. “He knew nothing of me, and I of him. He thought me a murderer, though I am not sure why.”
“I know,” the man said, obviously smiling behind the shadows that his hat had given him. “But do you?”
“Of course,” I said, losing track of my purpose without knowing it.
“The late Master Lance informed him that,” the man started. “But do you really want to know?”
“I told you,” I said. “I WANT TO KNOW!”
“Have it your way,” the man said. “Master Lance told him that you killed his mother, Josie Flargini.” I dropped my mouth in shock.
“I didn’t,” I said. “It was Lance. He did it. He knows it. I know it. Josie died seventeen years ago. How could I have killed her?”
“You’ve forgotten so soon,” the man laughed. “Remember that little trip back in time? Lance went back to kill you, so you followed him. You ended up killing him, sending him back to h*** once more.”
“I remember,” I said, recalling the incident. “But he deserved it, and that is in the past, and it shall forever remain in the past. Now is the present, and we shall concentrate on the present. Where is Misty?”
“Evidently not here,” said the man in the black trench coat, shrugging. “But if you knew where she was, then I wouldn’t have the power over you that I have now.” He again smiled obviously.
“What do you want,” I asked again.
“Your life,” the man said, clenching his fist. “I want you to die, and go to h***, to experienced what my master, Lance, has experienced. I want your very existence wiped off the face of the planet!”
“That’s impossible,” I said. “With all the Mysticmen gone, you can’t travel back through time to erase me. You may kill me, but somebody will remember me. And that person shall stand up to you, and they shall defeat you in an array of pain and agony for both you, and Lance!”
“If you say so,” said the man. “But let us have one little skirmish.” He called a slightly curved black sword out of nowhere. I retaliated, calling my teal katana, with its silver hilt. We looked at each other, one waiting for the other to strike first. We struck simultaneously, our swords clashing. He aimed for my neck, I countered, taking out his legs with a floored roundhouse kick. He fell to the ground, but flipped right up again. I had tried to strike then, but he was too fast. I advanced on him, ready to kill. The man fell to the ground, his sword flying out of his hand.
“Time for you to die,” I said, my katana at his throat. In panic, he pulled out the remote from his pocket.
“Not so fast,” the man said. “I still hold her life in my hands. If I die, this goes off anyway. So, is it worth it?” I thought for a moment, and then dropped my sword to the ground, making it disappear.
“D*** you,” I cursed under my breath. “What do you want now?” The man got up, dusted himself off with his hands, and looked at me.
“I already told you,” the man said. “I want you dead. Now, Ground Master!” A huge rumble came from behind me. I turned around, and saw none other than my father, Giovanni, standing there, after the small earthquake he had caused.
“Why hello, son,” Giovanni said menacingly, his brown eyes staring deeply into me. “I was informed that someone was trying to kill you, so naturally, I wanted to help.” He smiled again, this time, removing his hood.
“You’re behind Misty’s kidnapping,” I said in rage. “WHY?” he looked at me, nonplussed.
“No, I’m not,” my father said. “I am just the ‘right-hand’ man. Remember, you cannot do anything to either of us. If you do…” He moved his finger swiftly across his throat.
“You wouldn’t,” I said in fury.
“Of course I wouldn’t,” Giovanni said. “He would.” Giovanni pointed to the man in the black trench coat, who obviously smiled and waved at me. The man started to speak again.
“So, Giovanni,” the man said. “What shall we have him do?”
“Give me my Gym back, for starters,” Giovanni said, with his fist clenched.
“Now, now, my good friend,” the man said. “There will be plenty of time for that when he’s dead. But what shall we demand?” I had had enough of this. My eyes turned bright silver, and my cloak dissolved into thin air. My wings exploded from my back, and I took off into the sky. A beam of dark energy shot back into the sky after me. It nearly missed my wing.
“He’s getting away,” Giovanni yelled.
“You’ll never win,” cried the man in the black trench coat. “I have your fiancé!” I still flew away. I had to think of a plan to save the love of my life, my reason for waking up: Misty.
I sat on the Goldenrod City Radio Tower for some time, just thinking, about what I had to do next. But there was nothing that I could do. I turned on my radio to try and soothe my nerves. Whenever I did, it seemed that I could think clearer. I changed it to a station, and I couldn’t believe my ears.
“From this point on,” said a voice on the radio that sounded like the man in the black coat. “All Gyms will be closed, and all Pokemon Masters shall be transported to Indigo Plateau at once. Everyone who is not a Master shall be placed under house arrest until the situation is solved. There will be guards patrolling every city in both Kanto and Johto, to enforce the house arrest. This shall take place at 6 o’clock tonight.”
“What happened to Master Bob Shepardson,” a reporter asked the man in the black trench coat.
“He was killed suddenly,” the man said. “No more information will given out as of now. Get home now. All people found on the street shall be either gunned down or taken into custody. That depends on the mood of the guards.” The radio went dead. All the power seemed to shut down. I looked at my watch. It was 5:57 P.M. It was too late. He had won. I had lost. For the first time in my life, I had lost.
Something jarred me from my thoughts. My cell phone was ringing in my cloak! But only people within the League knew that number. I opened it, and put my face to the machine.
“Hello,” I said, unsure of what was going to be on the other side of the conversation.
“Hello, Bob,” said a man. It was the man in the black trench coat. “I’m sure that you have hear that radio broadcast. That was me speaking the nation. You should just turn yourself in. If you don’t, you will be killed at first sight by the guards. If you come to me, I will allow you and your fiancé to be together, and get married.”
“How do I know that she’s still alive,” I asked into the phone.
“I’ll let her say for herself,” the man said. I heard the phone moving, and being put to a different ear.
“Don’t do anything he says, Bob,” Misty’s voice came through the phone. “It’s all a trap! I know it is! Don’t-” She was cut off.
“Be here in a week,” the man said. “Or she will die. There is no doubt about it. Goodbye.” The phone clicked, and the conversation was over.
“D*****,” I cursed at the man, though he wasn’t there. “I WILL DEFEAT YOU!” I fell to my knees, and started to sob. There was no time for this, I thought. I had to do something about it. Quickly, I ran down the trapdoor on top of the radio tower. I snuck to the bathroom, and there was a make-up kit there. I uttered a thank you prayer, and inspected the kit. Inside, there happened to be a bottle of hair dye, teal in color. I shook it up, and searched through the other contents of the kit. There were also different colored contacts, a hat, a red shirt with an emblem of a pokeball on it, and a pair of jeans. I quickly put all the clothes on, put the green-tinted contacts in my eyes, and started to work on my hair. I dumped some teal hair dye in my head, and rubbed it in. Soon, my hair was a teal color, way different than my brown hair. I put on the baseball cap, and looked at myself in the mirror. I looked totally different. Nobody would ever find me in this disguise. I looked at all my old clothes, and I bundled them in a heap. I called teal fire to my hands, and threw it at the pile of clothes. My old garments burst into flames, and I was fully disguised.
I poked my head out of the door of the restroom, and walked out confidently. I had barely walked two feet when I heard a shotgun cock and someone yell.
“Get on the ground, now,” a guard yelled. “Do it! If you don’t want to be shot, you’ll do it! Hands behind your head! Nothing funny!” Slowly, I put my hands on my head, and laid on the ground, face first. The guard came up behind me, and searched me. I heard a Human Elemental Detector activate, and was pointed toward my head. Nothing beeped. Not a single thing. He ordered me to get up, so I did.
“What’s the matter, sir,” I asked very calmly and politely.
“I don’t like that tone,” cried the guard. “You’re not a Master, so you’re going to be taken to a center where we put the people wandering around the street.” He handcuffed me, and walked me over to the basement of the Goldenrod City Radio Tower. I was going to be locked in…
- End of Chapter Two -

The Dragon Master IV: Chapter Three

I was taken down to a well-lit room. There were about a hundred people in there, and it was getting crowded. The guard threw me in there, and slammed the door behind me. I ran at the door, and tried to break it down with my shoulders. Two people from the crowd stopped me.
“What do you think you’re doing,” one of them said.
“If you want to break down that door,” the other said. “Prepare to meet up with a array of bullets.”
“I don’t care,” I said.
“Well,” the first one said. “If you die, they’ll kill us, too. We’ll get out of this soon.”
“Maybe,” I said. “But I have to save my fiancé.” I tried to ram the door again, but they stopped me.
“We’ll tie you down if we have to,” the second said. “We’re not afraid to.”
“Well maybe you should be,” I said, shrugging them off and walking to the back of the room. I found a desolate corner, and pulled the bottle of hair-dye out of my pocket. I was wondering why the Human Elemental Detector didn’t detect my Dragon Mastery. I took a glance at the ingredients. There was blue 3, green 7, water, and metrofloroline. That ingredient was the largest amount in there. There was a computer over by the wall, and a man standing by it. I walked up to him.
“Does this computer work,” I asked him.
“Not that I know of,” the man said. “But if you want to try and fix it, be my guest.”
“Thanks,” I said, sticking my hand in the back of the computer. A single teal spark flew from my hand, and hit the motherboard. The monitor started up, and I was online. I went to a scientific website. I typed in “metrofloroline” and there was only one search engine that popped up. It was the same name as the chemical. It read:

Metrofloroline was discovered in 2003. It has the power to block any elemental signal. It is sometimes used in radio towers to block an elemental signal that could disrupt the radio signal.

I snapped my fingers, and glanced at the man that used to be standing there. He wasn’t there anymore. I shrugged it off, and went to the Pokemon League Web Site. I went to the login page, and typed in “Bob Shepardson.” I then typed in my password, “TheDragonMaster.”
“Access denied,” the computer bleeped.
“What is with this,” I quietly said. I tried it again.
“Access denied,” the computer bleeped again. I decided that I should take a look at the Master’s page. I looked for the Elite Four page, and I found it. Master Will was in the first slot. I clicked on Elite number two. Master Koga was there. I clicked “next” and Master Bruno was there. I clicked “next” again, and Master Karen was there. I clicked on “Pokemon League Champion,” but my picture was not there. Instead, it was a picture of Lance.
“What the h***,” I said aloud. I had finally noticed where that man had gone. He was talking to one of the guards outside the door and pointing to me. The guard shook his head, but it seemed that the man wouldn’t give up. Finally, the guard came in. I prepared to run away. But, the guard did not come for me. Instead, the guard grabbed the man that tried to rat me out. He was pulled out of the room, and a gunshot was heard. Everybody went silent, and the door was shut again. I breathed a sigh of relief. All the prisoners in the room were shocked at what they had witnessed. Gradually, the murmurs started again, and soon, the babble of chatter burst out once more. The two men that came up to me when I first entered approached me again.
“Now I know who you are,” the first man said. “You’re-” I clapped my hand over his mouth.
“Don’t say it,” I advised. “Unless you feel like having a katana blade shoved through your stomach, you’ll keep quiet about who I am. Understand?” The man nodded, and the other started to walk away.
“Werflump,” the man said that I had covered. I removed my hand for him to talk. “Where do you think you’re going, Dave?” The second man stopped, and turned around.
“That’s better,” I said. “This is how it’s gonna work. I need to get out of here. Since you two know who I am, you know what I have to do. You also know that I’m supposed to be dead. I have to save Johto and Kanto. The both of you know I do. I have a plan that might work. How many guards are stationed outside?”
“One per entrance,” the one called Dave said. “Isn’t that right, Brian?” The one Dave called “Brian” nodded.
“Well, d***,” I said. “This is not good. There’s gonna have to be a big enough riot that will distract most of the guards. Do you guys think that you can do that?” Dave nodded, but Brian shook his head. Dave elbowed Brian in the side, and Brian switched his shaking to a nod.
“What do you need us to do,” Dave asked, ready for action.
“Make them throw tear gas so I can get out that window up there,” I said.
“That’s an entrance, so there’s bound to be a guard there,” Brian pointed out.
“Got a point,” I asked. The two raised an eyebrow each. “Ready?”
“Can I ask you a question,” Dave asked.
“Quickly,” I said.
“Is there a chance that I could die,” Dave asked. “Because I want to say goodbye to my wife and kids. They’re in Olivine City.”
“Me too,” Brian said. “I want to say bye to my wife.” A tear trickled down his cheek. I couldn’t take it anymore.
“Change of plan,” I said. “You two are coming with me. Okay? We’ll start the riot, and then escape through the window.” The two men’s faces brightened.
“Thanks,” Dave said. “We are in your debt, Mast-”
“Don’t use my real name,” I cut him off. “Just say ‘blackhawk’. Dave, you’re ‘sweeper’, and Brian, you’re ‘brain.’ Never use each other’s real name. Do you two have any pokemon?” They both shook their heads.
“Nope,” Dave said.
“Okay, at six o’clock,” I said. “We’re going to bump into each other, and start a riot. With any luck, the guards will come storming in and fire tear gas. When that happens, we all run for the window. Get it?”
“Got it,” Dave and Brian said simultaneously.
“Good,” I said.
At six o’clock, I caught Brian’s eye, and he nodded. We walked pretty fast toward each other, and collided.
“Hey,” Brian yelled. “Watch where you’re going, buddy!”
“Why don’t you watch out, dumba**,” I yelled back. A circle gathered around us, and he shoved me back into it. I came back and hit him in the face, sending him into the crowd. Dave caught him, and Brian punched him in the gut. Everybody started to fight, and the guards came in as we had planned. They started to shoot tear gas at us, and the three of us sprinted towards the window, coughing all the way. We jumped on the ladder, and got out the window. I didn’t see any guards, so I pulled the other two men out and shut the window. I turned around, and I was facing the back of a guard sipping some coffee. I saw a bottle of chloroform on his belt, and stealthily removed it. I took a handkerchief from my back pocket, poured a tiny bit of the liquid on it, and put it on the guard’s mouth. The guard passed out, and we drug him into an alley.
“What do we do now,” Dave asked me. “We can’t just sit here and wait for them to find us. They’re gonna notice that the guard is missing!”
“No, they won’t,” I said. “Brain, put on the suit. It will come in handy. How many guns does he have on him?” Dave and Brian pulled out all the weapons on him.
“Two hand guns, and a machine gun,” Brian said, while putting on the guard uniform.
“Does he have any handcuffs,” I asked.
“Two pair,” Dave replied.
“Good,” I said. “Brain, give us each a handgun, and we’ll stick them in our pockets. Handcuff us, and pretend you’re escorting us to Azalea Town.” By this time, Brian was done putting on the suit, and he had everything ready. I stuck my gun in my pocket, and Dave did the same. Brian handcuffed us both, and we walked out of the alley. However, before we could get far, Brian’s radio sounded.
“Do you need any help with those prisoners, Chris,” a voice said from the walkie-talkie. Brian looked up, and saw a man standing on top of the roof, talking into another walkie-talkie, and waving at Brian.
“I’ve got ‘em,” Brian said in a very deep, husky voice.
“What’s wrong with your voice,” the other end said.
“That d*** coffee was too hot,” Brian said in the same voice. I had the impression that Brian was very quick-witted.
“Now, I told you not to drink that so fast,” the man said, aggravated. “You taking those prisoners to Azalea Town?”
“Yeah,” Brian said, almost losing his voice, but recovering in time.
“Okay, you can use that Jeep in front of the Radio Tower,” the man said. “Ah, I miss the old Champion. What’s his name? Bob Shepardson. Yeah, he was a good leader. It’s too bad that he died suddenly. This new one I just don’t like at all. He’s cruel to the people. I fear that this is what Lance could have been like. Thank God he’s dead. Oh well, carry on, Chris. Carry on. Over and out.” The other end of the walkie-talkie went out, and we all breathed a sigh of relief. Brian “led” us to the Jeep, he started it, and we drove off down Route 34.
Once we got going we saw that there was a checkpoint in between Route 34 and Ilex Forest. I thought quickly. Brian didn’t have an ID card, and even if he did, the picture wouldn’t match. However, we got to the gate before I could figure out a solution. A man dressed in fatigues walked in front of our Jeep to stop it.
“You’ll need an ID card to pass through here, sir,” said the private.
“Actually,” Brian said. “They haven’t issued me one yet. But here’s the signature of the Pokemon League Champion for proof.” There just happened to be a pen and paper beside him in the front seat, and he scrawled out an illegible signature, out of sight by the guards. He put the initials “P.L.C.” directly under it. Brian handed the paper to the private.
“That’s all in order,” said the private, peering at the paper. “Before you can pass through, it’s necessary to have a Master check among the prisoners.”
“Sure,” Brian said, stepping out of the Jeep. The private pulled out a Human Elemental Detector, and put it towards my head. There was a little beam of white light that was on my hair, and no noise sounded, indicating that I was not a Master. The same happened for Dave.
“Move along,” the private said. Brian got back in the truck, got the piece of paper back, and we drove off into the Ilex Forest. Dave was staring at Brian, mouth open in shock. Once we were out of earshot and sight, and I finally broke the silence.
“You’re a quick thinker,” I said. “But where did you learn that the Champion’s signature could get you out of any predicament? Only League employees were supposed to know that.”
“I used to work for the League,” Brian explained. “Lance fired me, and then you killed him, so I never felt the need for revenge.” We continued to drive on, and at my command, Brian stopped the Jeep by the only cliff in the Ilex forest. Brian put the Jeep in neutral, we got out, and he got us out of the handcuffs. The three of us pushed the Jeep off the cliff.
“They’ll never know we existed,” I said. “Let’s get out of here before someone does find us.” We ran over to the bushes, and walked out of sight towards Azalea Town.
Halfway through the forest, I tripped and fell flat on my face. I got up and looked what I tripped on. It seemed to be a manhole, so the three of us dusted it off. It said on the cover that it was…
“It says ‘The Shortcut to Slowpoke Well,’” I read off the cover. “If we take this path, then we won’t even have to pass through Azalea Town at all. That’s less guards that we’ll have to face. I refuse to kill anybody with a gun. I can’t use my katana, because everybody thinks that I’m dead. And if we want to stay under the radar, we’ll have to let people think that I’m dead.” The three of us lifted off the cover to the manhole, and I jumped down. Ratatta scattered everywhere. Brian and Dave jumped down after me. Brian pulled out a flashlight that he had taken from the Jeep. More Ratatta scattered.
The three of us walked down the dark, cautious of what could be lurking in the shadows. A rock skipped across the water, creating a loud splash. We all whipped around, to find nothing there. Slowly, we all walked forward again. Another rock splashed. The three of us turned around slowly again. Nothing was there. Dave, Brian, and I walked forward, at a fast pace. Yet another rock splashed in the water. Brian and I didn’t bother to turn around this time, but Dave did. Dave stopped walking, but Brian and I kept on.
“Um…guys,” Dave said, tugging on my shirtsleeve.
“What,” I asked whipping around to chew out Dave for holding us up. But he was right; someone was behind us. It was the person that I didn’t want to see at all right now.
“Hello,” said the man in the black trench coat. “As the Pokemon League Champion, I shall escort you to the nearest containment facility.” He didn’t know that it was me.
“Why,” asked Dave stupidly.
“Because everyone in Johto and Kanto is under house arrest,” continued the man, aggravated. “There is a murderer out there, so this is for your protection.”
“We’re going after the murderer,” Brian said unaware that he was the enemy.
“This is League business,” said the man. “Unless you are League Agents, you shall-”
“We are,” I interrupted, changing the pitch of my voice higher than normal. I flipped out my wallet, which had my ID in it. I only flipped it out for a second, though, so he couldn’t see it.
“You talk the talk,” said the man. “But can you walk the walk? Let me see your gun.” He held out his hand. I pulled out my gun, and held it in my own hand, not giving it to him.
“See,” I asked, my eyebrow lifted. Brian and Dave were whispering to each other. Soon, they realized that he was my enemy. Now, he was their enemy, too.
“Can I hold it,” he asked.
“No,” I said, sticking back in my pocket.
“Good,” the man said. “Trust no one.”
“I know my stuff,” I said. I had suddenly realized that I had dropped my high pitch, and had reverted to my normal voice. The others knew it, too.
“YOU,” the man in the black trench coat said. “Come with me, now!”
“Never,” I said, pulling the gun out of my pocket and firing it, over and over. As agile as he could be, he dodged all of my bullets. Then, he evaporated into shadow, and he appeared. But then, he evaporated again. I pulled the trigger over and over again, but I was out of bullets. Dave and Brian pulled me away, scared of my rage. We saw light at the end of the tunnel, and realized that we were in a lit cave: Slowpoke Well. There was a family down there, and they were scared of us.
“Don’t worry,” Dave said. “We’re the good guys.” With that, the man appeared, and he drew a katana darker than night.
“Put that gun away, and fight like a man,” he said. Willingly, I put the gun in my pocket, and created my teal katana with a silver hilt. He charged at me, and I blocked it. he flipped back, and two men dressed in black appeared beside him out of nowhere. One went for Dave, and the other one went for Brian. One of the ninjas had sai knives, and the other had nun chucks. Dave found a metal pipe on the ground, and Brian took a staff from the family behind us.
Dave blocked both of the sai knives with the pipe he found. The ninja twisted, and Dave turned. Dave hit the sai knives out the ninja’s hands, and they flew over to the wall. The ninja continues to fight with its hands and feet.
Brian was keeping the other ninja busy. The ninja was flipping the nun chucks around, hitting the staff with them. Brian’s staff broke in half, and he used the two pieces to further himself.
I, on the other hand, was doing quite well. I was on the offensive, forcing him to defend himself.
“Dark Shock,” the man yelled, pointing his katana at me. A thin beam of black electricity shot out of it, and I dodged it. it hit the wall, and numerous rocks fell off of it. They were heading straight for the family. Time seemed to slow down; the little girl screamed, the mother held her close, and the man, who was wearing a hooded forest cloak, so he would remain unseen, gripped his family tight. I called my wings, picked up the three people, and hurled them to safety.
“Bob,” Brian yelled, but the ninja hit him in the head, knocking him out cold.
“TIME TO DIE,” the man yelled at me. “DARK NIGHT!” A solar eclipse formed, and darkness filled the sky.
“NO,” Dave yelled, right before he got kicked in the stomach, knocking him out. The man in the trench coat smiled.
“SHADOW BLAST,” yelled the man, aiming his hand at me. His hand glowed black, and I couldn’t even move. I was going to die…
- End of Chapter Three -

The Dragon Master IV: Chapter Four

Before the man could fire his Shadow Blast, the man who was earlier protecting his family dived at the man in the trench coat. Once the man hit the black-coated man, the man in the black trench coat evaporated into wisps of black smoke, along with his ninjas. The man had just performed a perfect drop kick, which was rare for anyone to perform without years of training. Brian and Dave woke up, and the man walked over to me, his face hidden in his hood.
“You look familiar,” the man said.
“You sound familiar,” I replied to him.
“It can’t be,” said the man, stepping back. “You are supposed to be dead!” He was still backing away slowly.
“It was a lie,” I said, flat out. “I left on a mission to get Misty back, and the League was taken over in my absence. All of the other Masters were summoned to the League, but for what reason, I don’t know.”
“We were,” said the man. “And I do know.” The man pulled off the hood of his forest cloak and I immediately recognized him.
“Koga,” I exclaimed, breathless. The woman in the corner stood up, heaving her daughter to her shoulder. She also had a forest cloak on, and she removed her hood.
“Master Koga,” Brian said, kneeling.
“Mistress Aya,” Dave said, also kneeling.
“I’m afraid not anymore,” Koga said.
“What do you mean,” I asked my friend, not sure I wanted to know the answer. Koga sighed deeply.
“You haven’t heard,” Koga said. “Will was beaten nearly to death. They wanted him to do something, but we didn’t know what. All of us Masters were locked in the same room for days. Finally, Will came back to us. But he had changed. He had agreed to work with the man in that black trench coat. Will used his Mystic powers to take something from us; something that they now possess of most of the Masters’.
“Your Mastery,” I said in awe.
“Exactly,” Aya nodded, shifting her child. “Some Masters agreed to stay with the League, because they would rather stay with an evil, corruptive, murdering League, than lose their Mastery.”
“Which ones,” I asked, hatred welling up inside of me.
“We don’t know,” Koga said, shrugging his shoulders. “They had two pieces of paper. One was to stay with the League, not under you control, and the other to get your Mastery taken from you. It was a secret ballot; I did not know who stayed and who went. After everybody voted, the ones who voted to leave were stripped of their Mastery and put in separate cells. That’s where Grace came in at.” He gestured at the girl that Aya was holding.
“Grace ran away from her home right before the League was taken over,” Aya said. “She ended up at the League cells that we were being held in. Grace and I devised a way to get us out of there. After I got out, the two of us rescued Koga. We ran as fast as we possibly could, and we’ve been hiding here for two days. How did you wind up here?”
“I ran away from the League,” I admitted, ashamed. “I found this disguise in the Radio Tower. But, I was caught and taken to the Underground. Dave, Brian, and I started a riot and escaped. We took a League Jeep and drove into the Ilex Forest. We found a tunnel, and it led us to here.” Dave and Brian had finally gotten up from their knees.
“We know that Misty is alive,” Koga said. “We saw her in her cell as we left. There were guards all over that cell. She was in the maximum-security cell. There was no way to get her out without being killed…I’m sorry, Bob. She didn’t look too good. I doubt that she’ll last much longer…” Koga bowed his head, and Aya looked towards the sky, as if she was looking for some signal that would end this war.
“Who are these two,” Aya asked.
“This is Dave and Brian,” I said, acknowledging them with a gesture of my hand. “They were also trapped in the Underground. They left with me.”
“What’s our next move,” asked Koga.
“I don’t know,” I said.
“We can’t just stand here,” Koga cried. “They may have already killed Janine! I am her father, and I will protect her!”
“There’s nothing we can do now, Koga,” I shouted back. “I want my fiancé back, too, but it might not happen!” A note fell from the sky fast, and landed in front of me. I read the note frantically. It read:
Bob,
Tick, tock, tick, tock. The clock is winding down on your whore. I’m sure that you recognize that ring. It’s the one you gave her when you had been dating for a year. Lance did not know that Will was part Mysticman, but now Will is the only Mysticman left on the planet. Will has put a Curse on Misty. Every day that she is not relieved of the Curse, she dies a little more. More and more, her life dwindles away. I hear her cry at night for you, Bob. She has nearly given up hope. She most likely only has two weeks left, at the very most. Then, she will die, and you will want to, also. I will have won, and Kanto and Johto will be all mine! Until then,

The Man in the Black Trench Coat
In anger, I tore the paper up. I looked at the ring in my palm, and then I stuck it on my pinky finger, because it wouldn’t fit on any other one.
“Let’s go,” I cried, moving to the ladder that led out of Slowpoke Well. Koga grabbed me.
“Are you crazy,” Koga asked. “They’ll kill us all!”
“Misty will die soon if I don’t do something,” I said with my teeth clenched. “If she does die, he will win, and the League is his to run. I don’t give a d*** what you do. But I am going to save her. That is that!” I walked up the ladder, and looked around. I lifted myself out, and double-checked. I heard someone coming up the ladder.
“I’m coming with you,” Koga said, pulling himself up.
“Us too,” said Dave and Brian.
“Wherever Koga goes,” Aya said. “Grace and I go with him. We will find Misty for you.” I smiled. I have allies, I thought. Maybe I have a shot at beating this guy after all.
“Let’s move out,” I said, throwing my hand in the direction of Union Cave. The six of us entered the cave, and we walked until we grew weary. We reached the end of the cave, and set up camp. I said that I would keep watch, and warn them if anybody was coming.
“I’ll switch with you sometime,” said Koga. “Just wake me up when you’re ready.” I nodded to him, and then walked off by myself. I sat down on a log, and started to think about Misty. A clap of thunder and lightening dances across the sky.
“WHAT DO YOU WANT FROM ME,” I shouted to the sky. But, a voice answered me.
“Your life,” said a ridiculously deep voice. I turned around, and the Thunder Master, Lt. Surge, was standing there in front of me. He was wearing a yellow cloak, and his eyes were bright yellow.
“I see that you agreed to stay with the League,” I said.
“Yeah,” Lt. Surge said, cocky. “They told me that you were still alive once I signed with them. Koga and Aya escaped, and I am here bring them back. But, once my Master finds out that you are here, too, he will reward me by putting at his right hand side!”
“Over my dead body,” I said.
“If it must turn out that way,” Lt. Surge said, cracking his knuckles. Electricity danced across his fist, and I called my teal katana with its silver hilt. He called his double-axe created out of pure thunder. I slashed him across his burly chest, forcing him to cry out in pain.
“Looks like I drew first blood,” I said, twirling around my katana in circles.
“YOU SON OF A B****,” Surge yelled, charging at me. I stepped aside, and Lt. Surge fell flat on his face.
“No one ever insults Delilah,” I said, getting angry.
“I wasn’t just insulting her,” Surge said. “I was also insulting that b****, Lorelei! Will, now!” A wind picked up, and Will descended from the sky, clothed in a deep purple cloak embroidered with yellow stars and moons.
“Hi, Bob,” Will said, holding up his hand. “Bye, Bob.” Will’s eyes glowed black, and mine glowed teal. Black beams shot out of his eyes, connected with mine, and drew back. Will shot two more beams into his hands, this time teal, and my Dragon Mastery was in his hand. My katana disappeared, and I fell to the ground, flat on my face. Lt. Surge was about to pick me up, but Koga rushed to my rescue. He pulled a silver katana from a sheath on his belt, and sliced Will’s hand.
“Teleport,” Will said, touching Surge to make him go with him. With that, Will left with my mastery…The Dragon Mastery.
“Are you okay, Bob,” Koga asked me.
“He took my Dragon Mastery,” I said, feeling weak.
“I know,” said Koga, almost like the father I never had. He picked me up and carried me back to the camp, where everybody else was waiting to see what had happened. When Koga told them, Dave was the first to speak up.
“Great,” he said. “Now we had no Masters at all.” A thought popped into my head.
“We may not have any Masters,” I said. “But we do have this!” I pulled out a bag from my pocket. Out spilled eighteen Elemental Shards, but they weren’t connected.
“Why aren’t they connected,” Aya asked.
“They can only be connected by a Master,” I said, putting them back into a pouch, and sticking it back on my belt.
“Where are we headed next,” Koga asked.
“Violet City,” I said. “Once we get there, we will head to Ecruteak City, where Brian will stay with his family. Then, we will head to Olivine City, and drop off Dave.”
“When are we gonna leave,” Koga asked.
“Well, since they know where we are, we should leave now,” I said. “But I don’t have a cloak or anything. I’m not disguised at all. They will spot us right away if they see me without a disguise.”
“I have a forest cloak,” Koga said. He pulled a brown cloak from his bag and threw it at me. I checked my bag more closely, and discovered a pair of jeans, and a teal cutoff shirt. I slipped them on, put on the forest cloak, and we were ready to go. I took a quick look outside of the clearing, and then gestured them out. Koga tapped on my shoulder, and I talked to him without turning my head.
“What,” I asked him.
“Take this,” Koga said, handing me a katana in a sheath. I stuck it to my belt, and walked out carefully. The other five followed me.
We walked along that route, and I remembered my training days. Anything that I remembered from before I had my Mastery could be useful…
……………………..….……………*Flashback*…………………………………… …
“Puff, I choose you,” I called. I was eleven years old, and I was challenging the gym leader of Ecruteak City. It was down to Puff and a Gengar. The Gym Leader was Morty’s father, Ben.
“Gengar, if you defeat this Dratini, that’s one less badge we have to hand out,” Ben cried. “Shadow Ball!” Gengar’s eyes glowed black, and a ball of light lavender energy shot out. Puff dodged it, and that was all the more energy that Gengar had wasted.
“Puff, Ice Beam,” I shouted. Puff opened its mouth, and cold ice shot out of it. Gengar jumped, but its foot got caught with ice, making it fall back to the ground.
“Dragons are weak to ice,” Ben shouted. “Ice Punch, Gengar!” Gengar ran as fast as it allowed it to run. With its icy fist, Gengar nailed Puff with a strong uppercut. A right, a left, the icy beating didn’t stop. Puff landed in front of me, and the referee started to raise a flag.
“The winner of this match is-,” the ref shouted before he saw what was happening. Puff was glowing a bright white. It was growing bigger, and bigger. Puff was evolving!
“DRAAAAA,” Puff, now a Dragonair, sounded. Without my command, Puff let out an intense Dragonbreath. The attack hit Gengar, and he fainted.
“The challenger wins,” the referee shouted. The small crowd in the Gym was in awe at what they had just seen. A rare pokemon had just evolved into an even rarer pokemon! I received the badge from Ben, and I walked out of the Gym. As I did so, I noticed a red-haired boy about my age walk into a house. I took a quick look at the mailbox, and it read: Mysticman Tony Marchello.
“Probably just visiting an uncle,” I said aloud to myself as I walked off to the PokeCenter.
I snapped back to reality, and just realized, after six years, who that was and who he was visiting. That was John Flargini, my half brother, visiting Tony Marchello, the former Pokemon League Champion, and Will’s father. He was going to receive lessons about becoming a Mysticman. Flargini learned all he knew from Tony Marchello. I bowed my head, and wondered how someone so good could educate someone to be so evil…
“Bob,” Koga said quietly, nudging me slightly. “We’re in Violet City. Keep a lookout for guards.” I snapped out of my trance of my memories. I suddenly realized that my only good memories were with Misty. With God as my witness, I would get her back.
We walked through town. I may not have my Dragon Mastery, but I still have a reflexes. With a hand on the katana that Koga had given me, I kept a lookout for any enemy. A flash of light zoomed across the ground. Quickly, I assumed the angle of the sun and the light of the ground. I turned left, and held my katana between my eyes. A silver throwing knife hit the broad side of my katana before falling to the ground.
“They’re everywhere,” I whispered loud enough for just my group to hear. A shadow shifted in an alleyway. Brian and Dave were becoming increasingly edgy. A dart flew out of nowhere, heading for Dave. Brian tackled Dave, and Dave was not hit. I looked at the dart, sniffed it, and threw it on the ground.
“What was that,” Dave asked.
“Tranquilizer dart,” I said. “You’d be out cold in less than a minute. We have to keep moving. Let’s go.” Dave drew his gun. Brian got his machine gun ready. I preferred my katana, so my handgun remained in my pocket. It was out of bullets, anyway, so it would be of no use. Another shadow shifted, but this one was on the rooftop. I heard a loud, piercing whistling above us.
“Run,” Koga said. He didn’t shout it, but he just spoke it. We all ran, and Dave dropped his gun in his hurry. But Brian tripped. I noticed and ran back. I looked up, and a missile blew up a building behind Brian. It toppled on him, and I quickly tried to dig him out.
“BRIAN,” I shouted. I threw of rocks until I found him. He was covered in blood, and he was even spitting up blood.
“Go,” he said weakly.
“I’m not leaving,” I said defiantly.
“If you don’t, they’ll all die,” Brian said. “And he will win. Remember who you’re doing this for. Not just Misty, not just yourself, but for Kanto and Johto.”
“I’m taking you with me,” I shouted.
“No…you’re not,” Brian said. Brian took the gun the Dave had dropped. Before I could stop him, Brian had put the gun to his head and squeezed the trigger. I was in shock. I picked up the gun, and a felt someone pulling on my forest cloak.
“Let’s go,” Koga persisted. “We have to get out of here!” I got up, and the two of us started running. I never took my eyes off Brian, and another explosion soon riddled the pile or rubble that Brian was lying in. Bullets hammered the ground behind us, until we reached the Violet City Gym. When I went in, Koga barred the door.
“Where’s Brian,” Dave said immediately. I tried to tell him, but I choked up. The gun in my hand told the beginning. And the blood on my hand told the rest.
“Oh my God,” Aya said, nearly dropping Grace.
“If I had my Mastery, I COULD HAVE SAVED HIM,” I yelled the last part. I ran to the door, took off the bar, and ran down the street. I shot everywhere, and I was not hit. I can’t die, I thought. I have to avenge his death. Koga once again pulled me from danger. Again, Koga pulled me in the Gym and pushed me down to the floor.
“WHAT THE HELL DO YOU THINK YOU’RE DOING,” Koga yelled in my face. “YOU HAVE SEEMED TO FORGOTTEN WHY YOU ARE HERE! YOU HAVE FORGOTTEN WHO YOU’RE UP AGAINST AND WHO YOU’RE TRYING TO SAVE!”
“HOW MANY PEOPLE MUST DIE IN THE PROCESS,” I yelled back, standing up. “TEN? A HUNDERED? A THOUSAND? TO SAVE ONE PERSON IS NOT ENOUGH REASON TO MAKE PEOPLE DIE! IT’S JUST NOT WORTH IT!” Koga calmed down and sighed.
“You truly have forgotten,” Koga said, shaking his head. “You have forgotten that you are not saving just Misty, but Kanto and Johto in its entirety. You are one of the greatest Pokemon League Champions to ever live. You are one of the greatest Pokemon Masters to ever walk this earth. I knew a young man who took the job because he did not want the League to be corrupt. As far as I’m concerned, the young man died the day that he knew the League was not his to run any longer. You’re a fool, Bob Shepardson. You’re a fool, and you should keep your priorities in order. Brian is a casualty to a bitter war between good and evil. There have been millions. Sadly, there will continue to be many casualties between good and evil. Both Brian and Dave knew what they were getting into when you told them about this. It’s not your fault, Bob. You need to continue to be the Pokemon League Champion. You may not hold the title right now, but that is because of a lie. We need to save the world from the grips of evil. You need to realize who you are fighting for. You are fighting for people like Brian, Dave, and the rest of the hardworking people in this world. If that evil son of a b**** wins, then Brian died in vain. Don’t let that happen.” Koga walked to a window, folded his arms, and looked out of it.
“I-I’m sorry,” I stuttered. “I’ve been doing this for revenge of John. Now, I need to do this for the people that could and are getting hurt. I think that it’s time to round up some former Masters.” Koga turned to me and nodded.
“There’s a secret passage behind the wall,” Koga said, pointing to it. “That will take us to the Ruins of Alph.” I ran over to the wall, and it opened. The five of us ran through it, and I pulled out the Fire Shard from the pouch.
“Ember,” I said, and a small fire came out of the Fire Shard and hovered around us. The small fire made the darkness flee.
We walked, and we walked, and then we walked some more. After about an hour and a half, we came to an ending. There was a message in Unown writing on the wall. I had a sudden feeling of Déjà vu. It brought me back to the time when I was collecting the Elemental Shards to defeat my half-brother. The message said:
You must be desperate
To try and get through here.
If you weren’t,
You would have no fear.
The only access to this chamber
Is the medallion that you once sought.
You had to do many things,
And many people you fought.
Put the pieces in their slots,
And the door will open for you.
If you put them in the wrong spot,
Death will be your cue.

“What the h***,” Dave said. Everyone ignored him, and I pulled out the pieces to the medallion. There were no marks besides a circle on the wall. I had to go by a puzzle. I knew where the Dragon Shard went, so I stuck that one there. The shard stuck there as if a magnet held it there. I remembered that the Water Shard was always directly by the Dragon Shard, so I placed it where it fit. Again, the shard stuck like a magnet. From there, I just placed them by trial and error. Too bad I had no chance for an error.
After about fifteen minutes of shard placing, the medallion was complete, and the door opened. The part with the medallion, however, stayed where it was on a podium. Dave and I walked in, but as Dave did so, he accidentally bumped one of the Shards off the podium, and the door slammed shut. Dave and I were trapped in there, and we couldn’t get the door back opened. I heard a muffled voice.
“Bob, Dave, are you all right,” Koga shouted through the door.
“Yeah,” I shouted back. “Put the shards back into place! We don’t have much air!” At this comment, Dave started to breathe very fast. He was using up our precious air…
- End of Chapter Four -

The Dragon Master IV: Chapter Five

I tried to calm Dave down, but he wouldn’t. I took my katana out of its sheath, and sliced it against the stone door. Nothing happened.
“I…can’t…breathe,” Dave gasped. “I…am…claustrophobic…”
“Great,” I said. All of a sudden, Dave’s eyes rolled back in his head and he fainted. I was becoming light-headed, too. Koga had to hurry up, or Dave and I would both die of asphyxiation. I knelt down, decreased my breathing intake, and closed my eyes. This was a trick that Koga had taught me when he was training me to be a ninja. Nonetheless, I was getting more and more out of breath. I saw something on the floor of the chamber. It was the Ghost Shard.
“Argh” Dave moaned quietly.
“No wonder they can’t get the door open,” I said to myself. “They’re missing one of the shards!” I held the Ghost Shard in my hand, took a deep breath, and walked through the wall. Ignoring Aya and Koga’s shocked expressions, I placed the Ghost Shard in its respective slot. The door shot open, and the four of us ran over to Dave. He was still breathing, so that was always a good sign. I let Aya tend to him, while Koga and I studied the next clue. There was a button on the door. I pressed it. the shards fell out of their slots, and I scooped them up to put them in the pouch. I read the clue on the door. It read:
So you’ve made it this far,
You must have been smart.
But brains alone
Will not be enough for this next part.
Press the second button,
And enter through here.
Keep an open eye at all times,
And learn to control your fear.

“What’s that supposed to mean,” Koga asked, utterly confused. I ignored him, and read the clue again. It made no more sense than it did the first time through; maybe less. So I pushed the button. The huge stone doors slowly opened, and there was a vast darkness lying ahead of us. Out of nowhere, torches flared up. We were in a circle room, and eighteen torches surrounded us. There was a podium in the center of the room, and eighteen keys lying on it. Eighteen circles about three feet in diameter went around the podium.
“Wow,” I gasped. Koga took a step forward, and the room started to shake. The torches flared up even brighter, and the eighteen circles on the ground started to rise. At first, we were confused. Then, after we saw what was under the circles, we knew all too well.
“The Elemental Warriors of the Unknown,” Koga gasped.
“Correction,” I said. “The Elemental Warriors of the Unown.”
“These are what guard the secrets of the Unown,” Koga gasped.
“Yes,” I said. “Everything’s all coming together. The doors to the Elemental Shards all had writing in Unown. This is the final test for the medallion.” The eighteen circles arose fully, and we saw what appeared to be ordinary humans wearing different colored ninja suits. There were eighteen of them, and one for each element. I went around the room, making sure that each element was there. Poison, Fighting, Dragon, Water, Ice, Bug, Fire, Normal, Flying, I thought to myself. Change, Ground, Ghost, Steel, Grass, Psychic, Rock, Thunder, and Dark. They were all there. They all came to life. Their eyes lit up in their respective element. Smoothly, they moved towards me.
“What do you think they want,” Koga asked.
“They want the Shards,” I said. “Take these nine!” I threw nine of the shards, half the medallion, out of the pouch and to Koga. Half of the Warriors moved towards him instead. I drew out a shard and looked at it. It was the Water Shard. I was immediately reminded of why I was doing this…for Misty.
“How do we use them,” Koga asked frantically.
“Hold them in your hand and shout an attack of that element,” I shouted. “SURF!” A tidal wave appeared before me, and rushed toward the Warriors. The Fire, Rock, and Ground Warriors were damaged greatly. The Dragon Warrior held up its hand, and its eyes glowed teal. A twister shot out of it, and headed directly for me. I pulled another shard from my pouch. I heard Koga fighting over there.
“Rock Slide,” Koga yelled, forcing hundreds of rocks to fall down onto a few Warriors.
“PSYCHIC,” I cried, and an invisible blast shot out, knocking down all the Warriors. However, they got back up, this time, their eyes all silver…the color of the Elemental Medallion when it was activated…the sign of more power than all Masters combined.
“THUNDER,” Koga yelled, aiming an electric attack at the Water Warrior. The attack hit the enemy, but it didn’t do much damage. The Psychic Warrior put its hands to its head, and the Psychic Shard that I was holding was zoomed into its hand. The Psychic Warrior whipped around, throwing the shard as hard as possible. The shard was inserted into one of the doors that read “PSYCHIC” in Unown letters. The door opened, and some odd things flew out of it.
“They’re freeing the Unown,” I shouted to my companion. “Use your pokemon! Scarlet, Dragon, Dragonight, Aeroy, Flare, Puff, go! Fight the Unown!”
“Ariados, Venomoth, Forettress, Muk, Crobat,” Koga yelled. “Help out Bob’s pokemon!” Our eleven pokemon took on the newly freed Unown, while Koga and I continued to fight the Elemental Warriors.
“Flying Shard,” I cried. “FLY!” Wings like Falkner’s sprouted from my back, and I remembered the joy of flying. I took off into the air, and the Flying Warrior came up after me, on wings of its own. I pulled the Ice Shard from my pouch, and held it out.
“Bob,” Koga yelled. “Behind you!”
“Ice Beam,” I shouted, hitting the Flying Warrior, and making him crash to the ground.
“Shadow Ball,” Koga yelled. I turned around, just as his Shadow Ball hit the Psychic Warrior. The Ghost Warrior was coming up to me fast. I had to do something.
“Dark Shard,” I shouted, holding it to the Ghost Warrior. “Crunch!” Involuntarily, my body slammed forward on the Ghost Warrior. A huge crunch was heard, and the Ghost Warrior plummeted back to the ground. Koga, meanwhile, was bust fighting the Poison, Fire, Rock, and Steel Warriors.
“Earthquake,” Koga shouted, clenching the Ground Shard in his hand. He did a flip, and landed on the ground, causing it to shake. “Tremors!” Koga repeatedly pounded the ground with his fists, and damage increased on the Poison, Fire, Rock, and Steel Warriors.
I was getting the crap kicked out of me by the Water Warrior. It was water gunning me again and again, and the Thunder Warrior was preparing to attack me.
“MEGA DRAIN,” I shouted out, holding the Grass Shard to the Water Warrior. Energy withdrew itself from the Water Warrior, and went into me.
“Dragon Shard,” Koga yelled, aiming at the Dragon Warrior. “Dragonbreath!” Hot steam shot out of the shard, and hit the Dragon Warrior. The Dragon Warrior fell down in paralysis.
At that instant, the Thunder Warrior chose to attack. Bolts of electricity flew from its hands, headed directly for me because I was soaked. However, an ice beam flew out from the right of me. It formed a wall in front of me, protecting me from the thunder attack. I looked to see where it had come from, and my strongest Dragonite, Puff, was standing there. Flare was flying high in the sky, and then started to plummet down toward earth, fists outstretched. The Thunder Warrior started to throw lightening bolts at Flare, and I watched in terror.
“Flare, watch out,” I yelled. Rocks flew up from the stone floor, striking and deadening the blots of thunder. Flare continued to fly down, and he hit the ground with supreme force. The ground rattled, and the Thunder Warrior was thrown off balance, falling to the ground.
Meanwhile, the door for the Psychic Shard was still open, and Unown were flying out of it.
“ARGH,” Koga yelled. The Ground Warrior was standing above him, with Ground Shard in hand. With a jump and a swift throw, the Ground Shard was in place above its door. In Unown letters, “GROUND” was above the door.
“Koga,” I shouted, running to my friend. He wasn’t that badly hurt, but he was shaking quite a bit.
“Watch out,” Koga said, gasping for air. The Grass Warrior was coming up on me fast, so I took out the bug Shard.
“Fury Cutter,” I commanded, holding out the Bug Shard, and not knowing what was going to happen. Unexpectedly, my katana flung to my hand, and the Bug Shard placed itself on the hilt. The whole sword glowed bright green, and I knew what to do. I slashed and swiped at the Grass Warrior, but it ducked out, and the Poison Warrior took its place. Neither Koga nor I had elements that were good against Poison. The only two, Psychic and Ground, were gone. I heard a huge roar from behind me, and jumped out of the way. A huge Steelix was right behind me, rearing towards the Poison Warrior. I saw the Poison Warrior shoot a Toxic from its hands, but as the Steelix being a steel type, and immune to poison, the Steelix was unaffected. An Iron Tail whipped around and hit the Poison Warrior, knocking it against the wall and out cold. The Steelix turned to me, and it turned bright silver before morphing back into Koga. He had a pink shard in his hand.
“Change Shard,” Koga said, smiling. Though this was not a time to smile. The Normal Warrior was rearing its ugly head, and coming straight for us. I let Koga deal with him, as the Rock Warrior was coming for me.
“Flying Shard,” I commanded. “FLY!” I flew up high, so the Rock Warrior couldn’t reach me. I could hear Koga battling the Normal Warrior.
“Fighting Shard,” Koga cried. “Dynamic Punch!”
“Steel Shard,” I ordered. “Steel Wing!” The wings given to me by the Flying Shard turned steely silver, and I flew directly at the Rock Warrior at breakneck speed. I had hit the enemy straight on, and the two shards that which I had combined were recalled. The Change Warrior was standing before me, and I saw it change. A bright pink it glowed, and its shape shifted into one of the most powerful pokemon ever known…Mewtwo.
“Psychic,” Mewtwo-Change Warrior chanted, and I saw the nearly invisible waves coming towards me.
“Dark Shard,” I said in panic. “DARK SHIELD!” Blackness covered me, and I saw the Psychic hit the shield with a powerful blast. The Dark Shield was cracking, and the Psychic was still coming. Not being a Dark Master, I could not enforce it.
I saw a beam of energy come from the right of Mewtwo-Change Warrior. It was a Hyper Blast, and five more were following closely behind it. I looked from where it was coming from, and Scarlet, Dragon, Dragonight, Aeroy, Flare, and Puff had all fired a Hyper Blast at Mewtwo-Change Warrior to protect me. Alas, the Psychic Warrior was coming to help Mewtwo-Change Warrior after it was hit. The Hyper Blasts hit Mewtwo-Change Warrior, and it was blown to the wall, back in its original form. I jumped out of the Dark Shield, and headed directly for the Psychic Warrior. With my katana Fury Cutter powered, I sliced away at the enemy with a weakness to bug. Finally I connected, blowing the Psychic Warrior back.
Unown were still flowing out the two doors. I called the Flying Shard to give me wings so I could get there faster. A shot of ice flew out from nowhere, and the shards that I had with me flew from my hands. I fell to the ground, my wings, arms, and legs encased with ice. The Ice Warrior stood in front of me, and the Ice Shard flew to his hand. Like the others, the Ice Warrior threw the shard to its respective door, with “ICE” above it in Unown letters. The door slowly creaked open, and Unown started to pour out of it. My wings disappeared, as the Flying Shard was no longer in my grasp. However, the Ice Warrior had only grabbed the Ice Shard. It didn’t worry about any of the other shards.
“Fire Shard,” Koga yelled. “FIRE DRILL!” A drill made of complete fire came out of the Fire Shard, and headed directly at the Ice Warrior. However, the Water Warrior blocked it, sacrificing few of its hit points. Slowly and carefully, the Water Warrior went over and picked up the Water Shard.
“Do something,” I pleaded with Koga. He held out the Thunder Shard, ready to attack.
“Thunder Shard,” Koga began. “THUNDER DRI-” he was interrupted as a bolt of lightening came by, and then materialized again as the Thunder Warrior, with the Thunder Shard in hand. Both the Thunder and Water Warriors threw their shards into their respective slots marked “THUNDER” and “WATER,” both in Unown lettering. Unown flooded out of five out of eighteen doors. The Dark Warrior approached me, and I was afraid, for the first time in my life, that I was going to die. However, the Dark Warrior did not even seem the least bit interested in me, as it walked right by, grabbed the Dark Shard, and whipped it over to the door marked “DARK” in Unown lettering.
I maneuvered over very slowly and grabbed the Flying Shard with my teeth. I knew what I had to do in order to get the shards back.
“Fly,” I said with my teeth clenched. Wings sprouted from my back, forcing the ice to shatter. I picked up what remained of my shards, and took off into the air. The Fighting Warrior was attacking Koga, and since fighting was weak to flying, I decided to help him out.
“Normal Shard,” Koga whispered. “Extremespeed.” In a blink of an eye, Koga nailed the Fighting Warrior, forcing it to the ground. I chose that moment to attack.
“Flying Shard,” I said to the stone in my hand. “Wing attack!” I flew down, and struck the Fighting Warrior down. The Bug Warrior was not scared of its flying weakness, and came up for me on wings of its own. That was when I first saw it: a slot on the Bug Warrior’s belt which was the perfect size and shape to stick the Bug Shard in.
As the Bug Warrior came closer, I withdrew my Bug Shard, and held it out. I was about to stick it in its belt, but with a swift upward motion of the Bug Warrior’s arm, it deflected my attack, and the Bug Shard went flying. I zoomed to try and get it, but the Bug Warrior got there first. With a quick movement of its hands, it threw the Bug Shard into the slot above the door marked “BUG” in Unown letters. That was seven doors that Unown were flowing freely out of.
“Shadow Ball,” Koga yelled, aiming the Ghost Shard at the Ghost Warrior. Unbeknownst to him, the Dragon Warrior was coming up fast behind him, and charging an Outrage as he went. I used the Flying Shard to call wings, but the Flying Warrior was right on my tail. With that following me, I couldn’t save Koga.
“Watch out,” I screamed to Koga. But it was too late. The Outrage hit Koga in the back, letting the Dragon Warrior obtain the Dragon Shard, and the Ghost Warrior get the Ghost Shard. They threw their shards into doors marked “DRAGON” and “GHOST” respectively, both in Unown letters. Half of the doors were now open, and Unown still flying out of all of them.
“The Grass Warrior,” Koga warned me. I withdrew the Poison Shard, and held it out.
“Poison Sting,” I shouted. Pins of poison flew out of the shard, and they were hitting the Grass Warrior fiercely. The Fire Warrior was coming upon Koga, but he had it under control thanks to the Rock Shard.
“Rock Bomb,” Koga shouted. Rocks fell from the ceiling, exploding when coming in contact with the Fire Warrior. But the Fighting Warrior was coming in, protecting the Fire Warrior from the Rock Bombs, Karate Chopping them as they went, rendering the attack useless. The Normal Warrior Tackled Koga, throwing loose the three shards that they were after. The Fire Warrior picked up the Fire Shard, and threw it into the door marked “FIRE” in Unown lettering. Along with the Fire Warrior, the Fighting and Normal Warriors each threw their shards into the “FIGHTING” door and the “NORMAL” door, each marked with Unown lettering.
“CHANGE WARRIOR,” I tried to warn Koga, but it wasn’t soon enough. He was hit by the rampaging Tyranitar-Change Warrior, and was thrown into the wall, losing the last of his shards…the Change Shard, and the Rock Shard. The two warriors came and picked their shards up, whipping them into their doors. The Rock Shard was inserted into the door marked “ROCK,” and the Change Shard was put into the door marked “CHANGE.” Both doors were marked in Unown lettering. Fourteen doors were now open, causing many Unown to pile out.
Koga was knocked out…the rest of the warriors were advancing on me…and I only had four shards left. I had to use them wisely…
“GRASS SHARD,” I cried, holding the shard out in front of me. “SOLARBEAM!” A beam of sunlight drifted in and hit the shard, causing it to activate. I aimed the Grass Shard at the approaching warriors, and a huge blast fired out. The Fire Warrior used a Flamethrower, and the Solarbeam to wink out. I suddenly realized that I had seen neither Koga’s pokemon nor mine. I looked behind me, and all of the pokemon were all in a pile, with Unown around them, their message reading “THE LEGENDARY DOGS WILL BE BROUGHT TO THEIR KNEES AT THE MIGHT OF THE ELEMENTS.” Then, I suddenly realized what they were planning to do. They were going to kill the Legendary Dogs, and they were going to use the Elemental Warriors to do it. Without me knowing it, the Steel Warrior was upon me, grabbing in my pouch, and grabbing the Steel Shard. With tremendous force, the Steel Shard was thrown above the door marked “STEEL.” The Flying Warrior used a Wing Attack on me, knocking all three of my remaining shards away from me. The Flying, Grass, and Poison Warriors swooped in on their shards, and hurtled them towards their corresponding door. The Flying Shard was thrown into the door marked “FLYING” in Unown letters, the Grass Shard into the “GRASS” door in Unown letters, and the “POISON” door was soon occupied by the Poison Shard.
All of a sudden, the ground started to shake. The Elemental Warriors of the Unown went to their doors, and held their hands outstretched. Their own Elemental Energy shot from their hands, and connected with others. All of the Unown in the room started to circle around the center. All of the energy connected in the middle of the room. I had failed…
- End of Chapter Five -

The Dragon Master IV: Chapter Six

All of the energy in the middle of the room turned silver, and it shot out of the roof! At that instant, the Unown took off. A great wind came upon us, and the Elemental Warriors of the Unown had flown off. They were out of sight. Aya immediately ran to Koga, shifting Grace as she went. Dave, on the other hand, came over to me.
“You okay,” Dave asked, helping me to my feet. I felt dizzy, and rubbed my head. I looked at the Dragon Shard, and it fell out of its slot, along with the other shards, forcing the doors to close.
“I’m fine,” I replied, moving over to pick up the shards. I collected them and put them in my pouch. I looked at the hole the power had made, wondering.
“What do you think that they’re going to do,” Koga asked, joining me in looking up.
“Only God knows,” I said, before turning around and walking to the door.
“Psst,” someone whispered from above us.
“What was that,” Dave asked, turning around in all directions.
“Up here,” that same person said again. The four of us looked up, and one of my old allies was there, standing in all his glory…Bruno. He threw us a rope down, and I grabbed it to climb up. When I reached the top, he hugged me.
“Good to see you, too, Bruno,” I choked out, patting the giant gingerly on the back.
“It’s so good to know that you’re not dead,” Bruno exclaimed, finally letting me go.
“You’ve lost your Fighting Mastery, haven’t you,” I asked my old friend.
“Alas, yes, I have, Bob,” Bruno sighed.
“But how did you escape,” I wondered aloud.
“That part was easy,” he said. “Finding you was the hard part. Anyway, it went something like this: They took us Masters and made us vote to stay or go. I, like Aya and Koga, chose to leave. But, they didn’t let us leave. I was locked in a cell, with no security. Whenever they gave me food in a bowl, I used the bowl to dig myself out. I had nothing else to do, so it killed two birds with one stone.” I looked at my friend in amazement.
“But how did you find me,” I asked.
“Well, I wondered around for a week before I knew that I was getting close,” Bruno said. “I heard gunshots, so I figured that I could help out some Rebels that were fighting against the League. But when I got there, you had already gone…along with all the League troopers. So I wandered onto Route 36, and saw this huge explosion! I saw the Unown scatter to the four corners of Kanto and Johto. After they had fled, I saw eighteen lights fly out.”
“The Elemental Warriors of the Unown,” I said.
“Evidently,” Bruno shrugged. “So I came over to check it out. Turns out that it was you. I knew that you couldn’t stop from getting into a fight, Mastery or not.”
“Well, I do have the Elemental Shards,” I said.
“Yeah,” Bruno said. He jerked his thumb towards Dave and leaned into my ear. “Who’s this guy?” Dave seemed kind of offended.
“Bruno, this is Dave,” I introduced them. “Dave, this is Bruno, the ex-Fighting Master.” They shook hands suspiciously.
“What’s our next move,” Bruno asked, now ignoring Dave’s existence once more.
“We’re heading to Olivine City,” I said. “That’s where Dave lives. After that, we’ll have to save Misty.”
“What do you mean, ‘Rebels,’” Koga eyed Bruno suspiciously.
“The people that escaped the League,” Bruno said. “An underground resistance force has been set up already. There are about five hundred.”
“But there are five thousand League soldiers,” Aya burst out.
“They don’t plan to go on a full-scale attack,” Bruno said, gesturing his hands. “They plan a sneak attack to kill the new Pokemon League Champion.”
“We need to locate them,” I said.
“Just to let you know,” Bruno said as we started walking towards Ecruteak City. “The Rebels are in conjunction with Team Rocket.”
“WHAT,” Koga, Aya, Dave, and I asked at once.
“Yes,” Bruno said. “I don’t like it any more than you do. But right now, we need them. You know we do.” I thought it over carefully. Bruno was right, I thought. We do need them. But, if Giovanni is working with the League, then he can’t possibly be working with Team Rocket.
“I’m in,” I said, shaking Bruno’s hand.
“Too bad it won’t be that easy,” Bruno said. “I haven’t been able to locate them yet.”
“Let’s go,” I said, taking the lead and walking towards Ecruteak City. The six of us walked in the secluded trees, where the shadows could hide us. It wasn’t necessary, mostly because there were no guards in sight. We reached the city, and there was an unusual business about it. It seemed that the villagers were sick of house arrest and they were coming out. The guards had no chance against them, and I wasn’t sure which side to help.
“Just get to Route 37, Bob,” Koga said, pushing me forward.
“These guards are gonna die,” I whispered back.
“So, they’re League guards,” Koga whispered, more fiercely. “They are the enemy.”
“Go ahead,” I said. “I’m gonna help them.”
“NO,” Koga half-yelled, half whispered. I had sprinted out of the bushes, and pulling the shards out of my pouch.
“SHOW THE LEAGUE WHO’S IN CHARGE,” one of the protesters yelled. Most of them were carrying weapons, and they outnumbered the guards twenty to one. I may not have my Mastery, I thought. But I still remember the ninja skills that Koga taught me. I stuck the shards back in my pouch, and flipped in front of the guards, both surprising and stopped the mob.
“If you want to kill them,” I said. “Be my guest. But you’ll have to go through me first.” The mob didn’t know what to do. The guards were already half-beaten, and they wanted to finish the job.
“GET OUT OF THE F****** WAY,” another member of the mob yelled.
“Make me,” I said, intimidating some of them.
“GET HIM,” yet another yelled. They all charged at me, and I drew my katana and a shard.
“PSYWAVE,” I cried, holding the Psychic Shard into the sky. Waves shot out of it to all directions, and the mob clapped their hands to their ears.
“What the f***,” a guard whispered silently.
“Fire Shard of the Elemental Medallion,” I said. “FIRESTORM!” Fiery hail fell from the sky, forcing people to run back inside their houses. The guards were in awe at what just happened. Finally, the commanding officer built up the nerve to speak.
“Thank you,” he said. “How can we ever repay you?”
“Forget that you ever saw me,” I replied politely. “Forget about the mob. Forget that I saved you. Forget everything you saw from the point that you walked into Ecruteak City.”
“B-B-By what order,” one of the privates dared to say.
“By the order of the Pokemon League Champion,” I said. I then ran off onto Route 37, but I could still hear their voices…
“That was Bob Shepardson!”
“Yes, it was…but no one will ever know…”
“But-”
“I don’t know about you, private, but I didn’t see anybody since I walked into Ecruteak City! What I see, you see, and what I don’t see, you don’t see. Is that clear?”
“Yes, sir.” I smiled. The officer had done what I told him to do. I caught up with the rest of the gang halfway to the MooMoo Farm.
“How did it go,” Aya asked.
“Nobody ever saw me,” I said mysteriously, and then took the lead spot as normal. I thought about what all had happened…Will turning against me…the Elemental Warriors of the Unown being freed…the Unown being freed and going after the Legendary Dogs, which I had also freed…and the most important thing that has happened…Misty being kidnapped. Something caught my eye. Whatever it was, it was shining in the bushes. It looked metallic.
“What is that,” Dave asked us all. I went over to inspect it. It was a camera…a Polaroid camera. There was a packet of pictures lying beside it. Not knowing what was inside it, I opened the packet. There were eighteen photos in there, along with the negatives. The first ones just seemed to be pictures of Ratatta, Spearow, and other common pokemon. But the last picture bothered me. It was a picture of a fireball, and a figure in the middle. It sort of looked like a bird. Koga was looking over my shoulder to see the pictures.
“How did it escape,” Koga gasped, eyes wide open at the picture.
“How did what get out,” Dave asked, also leaning in.
“Ho-oh,” Koga said, still very quiet.
“Check the date on the picture,” Aya commanded. I did as she ordered, and flipped it over.
“It was taken an hour ago,” I said. She gasped, and nearly fainted. Bruno caught her, and set her back up.
“I thought that Ho-oh needed the Legendary Dogs to get out,” Bruno thought carefully.
“And as far as we know, the dogs are also secure,” Koga said, hand on his chin. I was getting nervous, but I had to tell them.
“The dogs are free,” I said, wringing my hands.
“WHAT,” Koga, Aya, and Bruno all asked together in rage.
“Huh,” Dave asked, hopelessly lost.
“I accidentally set them free,” I said quickly.
“When,” Koga asked, arms folded and eyes full of fury.
“Two years ago,” I said, looking down. “They were in front of the door to the Ghost Shard. I stepped on the platform, and they came to life. There was no way around it.” Dave tried to enter the conversation.
“Is Ho-oh free a bad thing,” Dave asked. Koga looked at him with his own patented stare.
“A very bad thing,” Koga said through gritted teeth. “Now that it is free, it will find Lugia to destroy it. Good thing nobody knows where Lugia is.”
“Wrong again,” I said. “I know where Lugia is. I came upon it when I was trying to save my younger form from Lance.”
“Was it mad,” Koga asked, madder than a Primeape that just was beat up.
“About as mad as you are now,” I said, backing down.
“This is not good,” Koga said. “D*****, Bob. If they see each other, then they will fight until the other dies. Number one, they will destroy all of civilization. Number two, they will kill each other off. They are one of a kind! This could be disastrous.” He put his hand on his head and turned away.
“We have to stay on the task at hand,” Bruno said. “Let’s get to the MooMoo Farm before dark. Guards patrol the routes at night.” As Bruno was the biggest one us there, we couldn’t argue with him. The six of us picked up our pace to a run, and it was ten minutes before we reached the MooMoo Farm. I silently tapped on the door.
“Go away,” said a man from inside. “We don’t want any trouble.”
“Sir, this is Master Koga, the second of the Elite Four,” Koga whispered. “Please let us in. We have Bob Shepardson with us.” Immediately, the lock clicked open, and the door swung forward. Arms grabbed us and pulled us in. Before we knew it, we were seated at the table, cups of coffee in front of us.
“So what brings you all the way out here,” the man said.
“Running from the law again,” I said. “We need your protection…again.”
“Yes, I remember,” the man said. “You were pretty beat up when you arrived the first time. And I never did get to thank you for the work force that you sent over here.”
“It was nothing,” I said. “They needed work, I needed to repay an old friend. Two birds with one stone.” I smiled, and so did everybody else.
“The new Pokemon League Champion said that you were dead,” said the man’s wife, just starting a conversation.
“People say a lot of things,” I said. “This man kidnapped my fiancé. Then, he sent me on a wild goose chase so he could quietly take over the League.”
“Didn’t the Masters resist,” the farmer asked.
“Unfortunately, they didn’t have the chance,” I said. “Their Masteries were taken from them before they could fight back.”
“I understand,” the farmer said. “Well, make yourselves comfortable, and we’ll hide you below the cellar.”
“Below the cellar,” Dave asked, confused.
“Yes, it’s where we hide personal possessions that we don’t want found,” the farmer’s wife said. “I’ll take you down there.” She got up, and we all followed her. She went into the food cellar, and reached into a box. I looked in it, and she pulled a lever. The wall moved, and a staircase was revealed. Dave’s mouth dropped open, and we walked down. She pulled the lever again, and the door closed.
“Fire Shard of the Elemental Medallion,” I said. “Ember.” A small flame hovered above the shard, and it lit our way. The staircase went down about twenty more feet, and then a fireplace lit up. We were in a room that had ten cots in it, so we each sat down on one.
“Good night,” Bruno said, turning over and falling asleep. I looked up into the ceiling for hours, until I finally fell asleep. I was so exhausted, I started to dream…
I was in the Palace of the Elite Four, in my room, all alone. I saw someone standing by the door run. I followed, and they were running down to the dungeons. They went down, and I lost them. I looked in each of the cells, looking for them. In the cells, I saw all of the other ex-Masters that had stayed with me, and I had left behind. I saw Darla, Erika, Brock, and all the others. They weren’t doing well. I heard a door slam, and looked over to the end of the corridor. It was the maximum-security cell…Misty’s. I ran over to the cell and opened the door. The man in the black trench coat was standing over her, his hands black with energy. He touched her head, and she stopped breathing. I screamed, and ran towards him. He called his katana, rammed it through my stomach. I looked down, blood pouring out of the wound that he had created. I was falling over on the ground when-
“NOOOOOOOOOOOOO,” I shouted, sitting up in my cot. Koga came over to me, and so did Dave, though Bruno did not even wake up.
“What’s the matter,” Dave asked in wonder. I shook my head, and looked down in my hand. The Psychic Shard was in it, though I cannot remember grabbing it.
“I just had a bad dream, that’s all,” I lied. It was not just a bad dream, it was a disturbing dream. Koga was also looking at my hand.
“I think that it was a premonition,” Koga said, catching everyone off guard when he said that.
“I think you’re just overtired, brother,” Aya said, watching Grace sleep.
“He has the Psychic Shard in his hand,” Koga said. “I think that, subconsciously, he got the shard, and then used its psychic powers to access the future. Bob, what did you see?” I swallowed and tried to remember.
“I was in the Palace of the Elite Four,” I said. “I chased someone down to the dungeons. They went into Misty’s cell. It turned out to be the man in the black trench coat. Anyway, he used his Dark Mastery to kill Misty. He turned, saw me, drew his katana, and killed me. That’s when I woke up.”
“If this is a premonition,” Dave begun. “Then we won’t win. That guy will, and terror will spread across all of Kanto and Johto.”
“If there’s one thing I know about time travel,” I said. “It’s that you can change the future. I’ve done it before, and I’m gonna do it again. Let’s go. It’s already morning.” At that moment, Bruno woke up and the door to the secret chamber opened.
“MORNING,” the farmer’s wife called down. Slowly, we all got ready. Koga, Aya, and I threw on our forest cloaks. Koga and I also picked up our katanas, attaching them to out belts.
“Let’s go,” I said. Koga nodded, as did Bruno. We were let out of the cellar, and thanked the farmer on the way out.
“Anytime,” the farmer replied. “Just do one thing for me: return to power.” He smiled, shook my hand, and we went off. Near noon, we had to stop and take a break in the trees, hidden from view. Suddenly, I just realized something.
“Koga,” I asked. “What happened to all the Elemental Warriors of the Unown?” Koga shook his head.
“I didn’t want to trouble you with this,” he replied sadly. “As you already have enough on your plate. But we have to find them, and place the shards in those slots on their belts…”
“And if we don’t,” I asked apprehensively.
“They will wreak havoc upon Kanto and Johto,” Koga sighed. I looked down at my feet, not knowing what to say. Finally, I figured it out.
“Let’s just continue,” I said, taking charge and walking on. The others packed up their things and continued. Around the bend was something we had not expected…
“Holy s***,” Dave breathed. In front of us was what looked like a concentration camp. Doubled electric gates were in front of us, with watchtowers all around. I knew exactly what to do.
“Dig,” I whispered as I pulled out the Ground Shard. I started to spin rapidly, and I just kept going deeper. Everyone jumped in the hole after me, and we came out near a small house.
“Get in,” Koga whispered to us, and we all hurried through the door. I tucked the Ground Shard away, and then I heard someone speak.
“Dave,” a woman’s voice exclaimed from the corner of the darkened room. A figure stirred in the corner, and moved closer.
“Joan,” Dave said in disbelief. A woman moved out of the shadows. She was beautiful, but her face was scarred and bruised, as were her arms and legs.
“Who’s that,” Aya asked Dave. Dave didn’t answer. He just moved towards her, and they embraced.
“I thought you were dead,” the woman said.
“I thought you were dead when I saw those gates,” Dave said. “Everybody, this is my wife, Joan. Joan, this is Bob Shepardson, and some of his allies.”
“I thought you were dead,” Joan gasped.
“I get that a lot,” I shrugged. “What is going on here, though?” Joan looked away, as if she was trying to remember.
“It was about three days ago,” she said, still looking away. “That man in his black coat came, and ordered everybody inside. Of course, some resisted, but he just killed them…with vengeance. He killed them almost as if he was mad at something. I’ve been in here ever since, no food, no water…but the guards come in here to beat me. Oh, Dave…” She started to weep bitterly. She collapsed, but Dave caught her. All of a sudden, we heard the marching of boots, and a light shown into the house.
“COME OUT WITH YOUR HANDS UP,” someone over a blow horn called. “PUT YOUR WEAPONS ON THE GROUND, NOW!”
“Oh, s***,” I said. “DUCK!” I hit the ground, as did everyone else. Bullets riddled the front wall. I had to think of some way to get out of this…I was only mortal…
- End of Chapter Six -

The Dragon Master IV: Chapter Seven

As the bullets pounded against the back wall, I knew that I could not stay here forever. Soon enough, they would try to bust down the door. Suddenly, the shooting stopped. I could hear the marching of boots again. Some of the soldiers were pounding on the door, trying to get in.
“They want in,” I said. “Let’s open the door.” I ran to the door, and pulled the shaft open. The two soldiers flew into the room, and they drew their guns on me. I pulled out my razor sharp katana, and sliced the barrels off their guns. With a jump spin kick, they were both down on the backs. However, more of them were flooding through the door.
“The Shards,” Koga reminded me.
“Right,” I nodded. “Psychic Shard, Psychic Pulse!” I pulled out the shard, and held it in front of me. The soldiers all clapped their hands to their heads, and fell to their knees. Koga, Bruno, and I sprung into action. Bruno was just muscling his way through the line of men, while Koga and I were just pummeling them. We made it out, and then we saw just what was going on. The man in the black trench coat was standing there, with a black glow surrounding his figure.
“How dare you defy me,” the man said. “You will die now! SHADOW BURN!” All the darkness around us was drawn into him, and he fired a beam of pure black energy. I flipped out of the way, and the house beside Dave and Joan’s house burst into black flames. I whipped out the Fighting Shard.
“MACH PUNCH,” I screamed. In the blink of an eye, I struck the man in the black trench coat. He flew back twenty feet, but regained his balance on one hand and flipped back into fighting position. I pulled out a shard at random: the Fire Shard.
“DARK SHOCK,” he yelled.
“BLAZE KICK,” I retaliated. Beams of black thunder were flying everywhere. My feet erupted in flames, but it did not burn. I decided quickly to combine two attacks. I pulled out the Normal Shard and whispered “Agility” to it. Using the speed to dodge the attacks, my feet were in a flurry of scorching kicks. Each one connected, and the man in the black trench coat was getting sick of it. With a back flip, he connected a swift kick to my chin, sending me backwards to my allies. Bruno caught me, and set me upright again.
“Let’s get out while we’re ahead,” he whispered.
“Good idea,” I whispered. “Take the Ground Shard and dig us out of here.”
“Right,” he nodded. I handed him the shard, and he ran off with the others.
“You’re not getting away this time,” the man in the black trench coat said. “SHADOW BURN!” Again, the black flames spurted out. I had to use a different attack. He was getting to know my attacks that I depended on. I had to surprise him. The only way to do that, I thought, was to surprise myself. At random, I pulled out a shard. It was the Water Shard.
“WATER SURGE,” I cried. More powerful than a Hydro Pump, the Water Surge put out the flames instantly. The water continued to hit the mad in the black trench coat. Right then, I felt a hand on my arm, pulling me back. It was Koga.
“Let’s go,” he said, not letting go of the iron grip on my arm. Thinking that I shouldn’t leave, I left anyway. I was pulled down into a hole. I was dragged down, and it was covered back up again with soil. Without looking back, we all sped away to wherever Bruno led us with the Ground Shard.
A half hour later, we stopped running, and Bruno handed me the Ground Shard back. Dave was sitting over by his wife, and they were just savoring the moment.
“Where are we going,” Grace asked. I was shocked. These were the first words that she had said in my presence.
“I’m sorry, sweetie,” Aya said. “But this is as far as you’re going to go.” A sad look filled Aya’s eyes.
“What do you mean,” Grace asked.
“You’re going to stay with Dave and Joan,” Aya explained.
“But I want to stay with you,” Grace pleaded.
“It’s too dangerous where I’m going,” Aya said. “Don’t worry, I’ll be back to get you when this is all over. I promise.” Aya turned away, and headed off. Dave looked perplexed.
“Where are we going to stay,” Dave asked. “I didn’t count on Olivine City being a concentration camp. We’ll take Grace, but we need somewhere to go.” I thought for a moment. I snapped my fingers.
“I have a log cabin where I used to vacation with Delilah and Lance when we were younger,” I said. I handed him a piece of paper. “Here’s a map. It’s right near Mt. Mortar. There are supplies that will hold for at least a month if you ration them. There’s also a well out back. Hopefully, you won’t be staying there that long. I want to get this conflict resolved. Go.” I pointed the Ground Shard at the ceiling, and it split open. Dave and Joan, carrying a crying Grace, left. I looked over at Aya, and teardrops were falling down to the ground from her face.
“Aya,” Koga started. “Are you-”
“I’m fine,” she cut him off. “Let’s just do as Bob said, and get this conflict resolved.” Koga was about to put a hand on her shoulder, but decided against it, and we continued on…just the four of us.
We came out in the darkness, and I used Flash by the Normal Shard to light it up. It turned out that we were in Mt. Mortar. We navigated ourselves through the caverns, and we found ourselves coming upon a group of people huddling around a fire. One of them whipped around and saw us.
“LEAGUE INTRUDERS,” an old man shouted. “KILL THEM!”
“WAIT,” I cried. “WAIT!” It’s me, Bob Shepardson. I was—I am the Pokemon League Champion.”
“How can you be,” the old man asked. “Shepardson is dead. You must be an imposter. KILL THEM!”
“Whoa, whoa, stop,” I said. “What if I had some other former League employees with me?”
“That would just give us more incentive to kill you and your companions,” said the old man.
“Wait,” I cried again. “May I present, Bruno, third of the Elite Four.” Bruno stepped up, and all of the people fell to their knees immediately.
“I am so sorry, Master Bruno,” apologized the old man. “Had I known it was you that traveled with this stranger, I would’ve not told to attack.”
“Wait,” Koga said, stepping forward. “Why kneel down before Bruno, but not before the Pokemon League Champion?” Nobody said anything, but Bruno was shaking his head.
“That, my friend, is simple enough,” Bruno said. “They are what we call ‘obsessive’ fighting trainers. They will kneel down before a Fighting Master before any other, no matter the rank.”
“What are they doing here,” Aya asked.
“Good question,” Bruno said. “What are you all doing here?”
“The League was about to arrest us all,” said the old man. “But, some young men gave their lives so the rest of us could escape. We fled to Mt. Mortar.”
“Then you must have lived in Mahogany Town,” I exclaimed. “What is the situation like there?”
“Deserted,” the old man said. “Nobody there…all wiped out…” The old man wiped his eyes. “But, we will help you get there if needed. Just follow the trail of maroon scarves that we tied to rocks. Good luck.” He leaned in to me. “By the way, if you really are Bob Shepardson, I know that you’ll save us.” Before he could tell us where to go, a little girl in a maroon velvet coat came up to me, and tugged on my forest cloak.
“I believe that you are who you say you are,” she said. “Thank you.” She walked back to her mother. The old man sent us in the direction that we needed to go, and we left. We followed the trail, and soon enough, we were led outside. The four of us followed the forest path to Mahogany Town, and soon we came to a gate that read “Mahogany Town: The Original Home of the Ninja.” I raised my eyebrow at Koga.
“Most people think that Fuchsia City was the original home of the ninja,” Koga explained. “But, it is indeed Mahogany Town. This is where I learned the martial arts.” I nodded, and I pushed open the gate. It fell down with a loud thud.
“Okay,” I said, rolling my eyes at it. “This place was definitely raided by the League. And they had Fire Trainers.” I pointed at the scorch marks on the rocks.
“An entire team of fire against a town of ice,” Bruno said, shaking his head. “They went quickly.”
“We have to meet with the Rebels,” Aya persisted.
“Good idea,” I said. “I want this resolved as quickly as possible. Where do we meet them at?”
“Lake of Rage,” Bruno said. “They’ll contact us from there.”
“But how-,” I said.
“They didn’t say,” Bruno said. “They just said that they would.”
“How can we trust them,” Koga asked.
“My brother is heading it up,” Bruno said. “He knew that I would never betray Kanto and Johto like this. So, he took it upon himself to solve this.”
“Let’s just hope that when he finds out that I’m alive,” I said. “That he knows that I’m in charge.” I started walking towards the gate that led towards the Lake of Rage.
We came upon a large lake, and looked out upon it. However, there was nothing to be seen.
“When’s he gonna call us,” I asked.
“Be patient, Bob, just be patient,” Bruno said. All of a sudden, the water about twenty feet out started to bubble. A tube came out of the water, about six inches in diameter. Something shot out of it, and landed ten feet in front of me. It was a cell phone. We were all staring at it, when it started to ring.
“Should I get it,” I asked Bruno.
“Yeah,” he said, transfixed at the phone. I walked over and picked it up. Holding it in my hand, I opened it and placed it to my ear.
“Hello,” I asked the other end.
“Bruno,” the other end asked back.
“No,” I said. “But I’m-”
“Where’s Bruno,” the other guy cut me off.
“He’s right here,” I said.
“Give him the phone,” the guy said. “I need to talk with-”
“Well, you’re gonna talk to me,” I said, my voice getting angry.
“You have no right to overrule me,” said the other guy, also getting angry.
“Yes, I do,” I argued.
“By what order,” the other guy said.
“By me, Bob Shepardson, the current Pokemon League Master,” I said. There was silence. Then there was soft mumbling, as if the man was holding his hand over the phone, so I couldn’t hear.
“We have evidence that Bob Shepardson is dead,” said the man.
“Oh yeah,” I asked. “What would that be?”
“His body,” the man said.
“How could you have my body when I’m currently in it,” I asked in fury.
“If we have his body, then you’re not in it,” the man argued.
“ARGH,” I said in frustration. “Look, all I’m trying to do is get my fiancé back while saving Kanto and Johto. If you have a problem with that, then why don’t you just go f-”
“Give me the phone,” Bruno said, cutting me off and grabbing the phone away from me. “Jim, this guy is Bob Shepardson…How do I know?…I’ve been with him all this time!…Look, give me directions to where you are…Okay, wait…I’m going to make you give the directions to that guy that you don’t believe is Shepardson…Do it…you know I can kick your a**, little bro…Okay.” He handed me the phone.
“Ready to cooperate,” I asked him.
“We’ll see if you’re the real Shepardson when you get here,” he asked.
“Specify where ‘here’ is,” I ordered.
“Go back to Mahogany Town,” he ordered. “Caddy-cornered from Pryce’s Gym is a store. Go to the cash register and press the combination ‘642862’. A trapdoor will open, and there will be a set of stairs. Go down them, and some of my men will arrest you and take you to me. You will get let go after I confirm that you are the real Shepardson.” Click. The line went dead.
“Where do we go,” Koga asked.
“Follow me,” I ordered, without saying exactly where we were going. I walked all the way back to Mahogany Town, and stepped in front of Pryce’s Gym. I looked diagonally from the corner of the Gym, and there was a PokeMart. It wasn’t an official one, but it was a store. I walked over there and twisted the knob. It was locked. I took out my katana, and made two diagonal slashes from corner to corner. I kicked the door in, and walked through the door. I spotted the cash register right away. I walked over to it, but Koga, Aya, and Bruno just stood there. I pressed “6” on the keypad. Remembering the next digit, I pressed “4,” “2,” “8,” and “6” again. The last number I was having trouble remembering. I knew that it had already been pressed once. I had four choices.
“Bruno,” I asked. “How many brothers and sisters do you have?”
“Just me and Jimmy,” he replied. I pressed “2.” The screen read “ACCESS GRANTED.” A trapdoor opened in the far corner of the room.
“Let’s go,” I said, pointing my hand towards the trapdoor. The other three followed me down. Four men with guns were standing there waiting for me. I knew that this was coming, so I raised my hands and cooperated.
“What’s going on,” Bruno asked in rage. “Where’s Jimmy?” Another man stepped out from behind a corner.
“Right here, Bruno,” said the man who was supposed to be Jimmy. He was a similar build to Bruno. He was about an inch shorter, and about three years younger.
“What is the meaning of this, Jimmy,” Bruno demanded.
“Just a precaution,” Jimmy said. “I assure you, he knew about this all along.” I nodded.
“Let us see the body,” I demanded.
“You have no authority over me yet,” Jimmy said. “As long as you are under arrest, you are considered a Prisoner Of War. Take him away, boys.” They handcuffed me and I was taken to a room with a two-way glass mirror. I sat down on a bed, and found out that I was on the side that I could see through. Lights flickered on in the room next to me, and there was a table in the middle of the room. That must be the body, I thought of the thing under that blanket draped over it. Aya, Koga, Bruno, and Jimmy walked into the room. Jimmy undraped the body, and there laid someone who looked identical to me. Koga went up to inspect the body. I could also hear them through the glass.
“See this,” Koga indicated to Jimmy, pointing a mark on the side of the body’s neck. “A mark from plastic surgery. This man, whoever he is, was made to fake Bob’s death. He died in vain…”
“Proof enough for you, brother,” Bruno asked.
“Um…yes,” Jimmy said. “Yes it is. I’ll have Master Bob taken away from detainment immediately.” He walked out of the room, as did everyone else. The door to my cell opened, and the four of them walked in.
“I see that I was telling the truth,” I said.
“Yes, you were,” Jimmy confirmed.
“I hope that you know that I’m in charge from now on,” I said.
“You will be working with an operative of my group,” Jimmy said. “Also, you will be working with the head operative of Team Rocket.”
“Deal,” I said, shaking his hand.
“You have just met the operative of my group,” Jimmy smiled. “Me. I’ll go take you to the other operative.” My handcuffs were taken off, and Jimmy took us to a room. I walked in, and saw a man staring at the wall, his back facing us. He turned around, and I was shocked.
“Giovanni,” I said in rage.
“Bob,” Giovanni said, also in raw hatred.
“Do you two know each other,” Jimmy asked, obviously unaware of our relationship.
“This son of a b**** is my father,” I said.
“And this b****** is my son,” Giovanni said. “Though I don’t like to claim him.”
“Don’t worry, ‘Dad’, the feeling’s mutual,” I said. We stared at each other in pure hatred. There was a long silence.
“Well,” Jimmy said. “We had better get to our briefing.” I walked out of the room as quickly as possible. My father did the same.
“Look,” Giovanni said. “Since we’re going to work together-”
“I thought you were working with that dumba** in the black trench coat,” I said with spite.
“Long story short,” Giovanni said. “I wanted more control, and he took my Mastery.”
“Go on,” I ordered.
“Since we’re going to work together,” he continued. “We should ignore our past. I know that you don’t like me-”
“Don’t like you,” I said in anger. “I HATE YOU!”
“I’m going to wave that aside,” Giovanni said. “I know that you hate me, and trust me, the feeling’s mutual. But, in order to take this guy down, we’re going to have to work together.”
“Since we’re all making points here,” I said. “Let’s get something straight. I’m in control. I don’t care what that Rebel operative says. I’m in control. You two are under me. Since you were never my father, I’m never going to be your son. I rank above you. As far as I’m concerned, you could die in the line of fire.”
“Let’s just get this thing wrapped up as fast as possible,” he said. We walked into the briefing room. We each took a seat.
“This is what’s going to happen,” Jimmy said. “The three of us will travel though the Ice Path. That’s one of the only places where the League has no control. We will go through Blackthorn City. I have a contact there. As for Bruno, Koga, and Aya, they will wait for our signal here. They will go in for a frontal attack.”
“Wait,” I said. “They are going to get slaughtered up there.”
“On the contrary,” Jimmy said. “Most of the League soldiers are at concentration camps places strategically throughout Kanto and Johto.”
“Where are all the other ex-Masters,” I blurted out, interrupting him.
“As far as we know, they are placed within the camps,” Jimmy said. “But, they are not in their own town.”
“Why don’t we go and get them first,” I asked. Something dawned on me. “Koga said that all the ex-Masters were being held at Indigo Plateau.”
“We have a double-agent in there now,” Jimmy said. “He reports that all the ex-Masters that didn’t go along with him were deported two days ago.”
“They could be useful,” I said. “I know they could.”
“Bob,” Jimmy argued. “Time is of the essence.”
“I know,” I said. “But, think of how much faster we could infiltrate the Palace of the Elite Four. It would save us more time in the end.”
“This is a joint decision,” Jimmy said. “Majority rules. You say yes, and I say no. Since I brought you into this, and Giovanni isn’t saying anything-”
“I agree with Bob,” Giovanni broke up the argument. “We could go and retrieve our allies. After that, we could split them up, while you, Bob, and me go in. Just another distraction is all it is.” I was in shock. The man who hated me more than anything else agreed with me. I didn’t know whether to believe him or not. I guess I didn’t have a choice.
“Like you said, Jimmy,” I broke the silence. “Majority rules. We leave in an hour. Briefing adjourned.” I got up from my chair and walked out of the room. Before I knew it, Giovanni was following me.
“Don’t I even get a ‘thank-you,’” Giovanni asked in an unbelievable tone. I stopped and turned around.
“Listen,” I said. “I don’t know what angle you’re coming from, but I’m not buying it. The question you really want to ask is ‘How do you thank the man that abandoned you as a baby, became the evil genius of the most evil corporation in the world, and still defies you?’”
“Okay,” Giovanni said sarcastically. “How do you thank the man that abandoned you as a baby, became the evil genius of the most evil corporation in the world, and still defies you?”
“You don’t,” I said coldly. I whipped around and walked away. I was walking furiously towards where Koga, Aya, and Bruno were at to tell them what was going on. Jimmy caught us to me.
“Bob,” Jimmy said, running to catch up. He handed me a backpack. “Here’s your gear. Also, if you’re going to tell Aya, Koga, and Bruno, they have already been informed of the plans. Here’s a change of clothes.” He handed me a black camouflage suit.
“Thanks,” I said. “I’m going to go change, and then we can get on the road.”
“Good,” Jimmy said, slapping me on the back. “By the way, Bob. I knew that you weren’t going to be too thrilled about working with Team Rocket. Now I know that you’re even less thrilled about working with your father. I just hope that you and him can sort things out.”
“There’s nothing to sort out,” I said. “Nothing in the world could salvage what was left of our relationship before I even knew him. I’ve hated Team Rocket all my life, even when I was little. I always thought my father was a good man, but when I found out who he really was, I wished that I never met that sorry excuse for a man. I’m gonna go get ready.” Without saying another word, I went off to a room. Inside were Koga and Bruno, also dressed in black camouflage suits.
“You hear,” Koga asked in a solemn tone.
“Yeah,” I said as I pulled off my shirt and pants and got into my other one.
“This is going to be the grand finale,” Bruno said, also in a solemn tone.
“I know,” I said. “Kind of reminds me of the time that I was fighting against the League for my first time. You guys weren’t there, but we had many hardships. Only this time, the stakes are higher…”
“No doubt,” Koga said. We sat there for some time, not saying anything. Occasionally, Bruno would go and get a drink of water. Finally, my cell phone rang, and it was Jimmy on the other end.
“It’s time,” Jimmy said.
“Okay,” I said. I nodded to Koga and Bruno, and then left the room. Jimmy was waiting for me at the stairs out of the lair. I nodded to Jimmy, but ignored my father’s presence. As I saw when I exited, the sun was setting, and three men dressed in black were walking towards the Ice Path. I had just realized, that the next chapter of my life was unfolding…
- End of Chapter Seven -

The Dragon Master IV: Chapter Eight

It was dark before we reached the entrance to the Ice Path. Jimmy went in, then Giovanni, and then I followed them both. After about an hour of walking, we came to a large sheet of ice with large rocks scattered about it. We all stared at it for some time, until Jimmy broke the silence.
“How do we get through the rest of the cave,” Jimmy asked. “I don’t even see an exit.” He put his hands over his eyes and squinted, but gave up. Meanwhile, my brain was at work. After about another five minutes, I had figured it out.
“Follow me,” I said. I jumped on the ice, making me slide until I came to a rock and stopped myself.
“What the f*** are you doing,” Giovanni yelled at me. “Get your a** back here right now!”
“Why don’t you come out and get me,” I asked tauntingly. I jumped again, sliding to another rock. Giovanni was fed up. He jumped after me, and we were bouncing around the rocks. Jimmy finally jumped in, and collided into Giovanni. They hit hard, and both fell on the ice hard. I heard a faint cracking. In the blink of an eye, both Giovanni and Jimmy fell through.
“Help,” Jimmy and Giovanni yelled simultaneously. I quickly pulled out the Psychic Shard.
“Telekinesis,” I cried. At once, I could feel the powers of the Psychic Shard entering me. I concentrated hard pulling them out of the water, and they were lifted out. I then concentrated on all three of us. I carried us over to the exit. Giovanni and Jimmy were shivering.
“Get us something to warm up with,” Giovanni demanded. “NOW!” I smirked and shook my head.
“I just saved your life,” I said quietly. “I could have easily let you freeze to death.”
“You wouldn’t,” he spat. “I’m your father-”
“No you’re not,” I said. “Like I said before, ‘Since you were never my father, I’m never going to be your son.’” I pulled out the Fire Shard.
“What are those,” Jimmy asked, cautiously looking at it.
“Ember,” I said, placing the Shard down on the ground in front of my ally and my enemy. “Elemental Shards. They contain the powers of all the elements.”
“And this one does fire,” Jimmy asked.
“Yeah,” I said. “You two warm up. I’m going to be sleeping.” I walked over to a nice rock, and sat down beside it. I closed my eyes, and pulled the Psychic Shard out of its pouch. Holding it in my palm, I would know everything that was going on around me, while I was sleeping.
“J-J-Just between you and m-m-me,” Giovanni said. “I-I-I don’t trust Bob at all.” Jimmy looked surprised.
“I d-d-do,” Jimmy chattered. “B-B-But you would th-th-think that you and h-h-him would be c-c-close.” I rubbed his hands over the fire.
“We’re not,” Giovanni said, stopping his chattering of his teeth and warmed up. “He wants me dead. I want him dead. Had it been me on the outside, I would’ve let him freeze to death in the hole.” Now Jimmy was really shocked.
“You would let your own son die,” Jimmy gasped.
“You heard what he said,” Giovanni stated. “ ‘Since you were never my father, I’m never going to be your son.’ That’s raw hatred right there.” Jimmy shook his head.
“Can’t you try to bond with him,” Jimmy asked.
“I did try,” Giovanni said. “When I kidnapped him-”
“There was your first mistake,” Jimmy cut Giovanni off. Giovanni waved his hand aside at it.
“Anyway,” Giovanni continued. “When I kidnapped him, I was happy to see him. I wanted us to rule together.”
“Rule what,” Jimmy asked.
“My company,” Giovanni answered. “He just saw it as a joke to get him off Lance.”
“But he hated Lance,” Jimmy said.
“So do I,” Giovanni replied defensively. “I hated the man. The only reason that I took his side was because he was giving money to my company.”
“So he bribed you,” Jimmy asked.
“Sort of,” Giovanni answered. “The only reason that I took the money was because I was about to file bankruptcy…”
“So you lost your son,” Jimmy said. “All because you were going broke…That’s sad, Giovanni.”
“Believe me,” Giovanni retaliated. “If I knew what was to come of this, then I wouldn’t have taken the money…” Jimmy still shook his head.
“You knew where the money came from, right,” Jimmy asked.
“No,” Giovanni said. “Only after I had spent it all did he tell me where it came from…”
“Where did it come from,” Jimmy asked, getting impatient. Giovanni sighed, and rubbed his eyes.
“It came from poachers paying Lance large amounts of money so they could hunt pokemon in the Safari Zone,” Giovanni shouted.
“Be quiet,” Jimmy said, hushing him up. “If Bob heard that, then he would hate you even more.” I did. Now I hated him all the more. He wasn’t telling the truth. He knew where the money came from, I thought. I just loathed my so called “father.” I left the Psychic Shard in my hand as Jimmy and Giovanni retired.
During the middle of the night, I got very cold. I tried to move to warm myself, but I couldn’t budge. I opened my eyes, and there stood Pryce, the Ice Master. He had an evil grin on his face.
“Hello again,” he said. He waved his hand at me, covering me with another sheet of ice.
“So you stayed with the League,” I grunted.
“I had no choice,” Pryce said. “Had I been moved to a concentration camp like the others, I would’ve died within days. Forgive me, Bob, but I have to do this…” He raised his hand once more, this time at my head, but I thought quicker than him.
“PSYCHIC,” I cried, thanking myself for keeping the Shard in my hand. Pryce was blasted away, and I called the Fire Shard to me using Telekinesis.
“You little b******,” Pryce said with his teeth clenched.
“FIRE SPIN,” I cried, using the Fire Shard with my Telekinesis. It wrapped around the ice prison, and melted it away. Using the Fire Shard, I freed Jimmy and Giovanni.
“ICE BEAM,” Pryce shouted, hitting Giovanni in the stomach.
“ROCK SLIDE,” I cried, pulling out the Rock Shard. Rocks covered Pryce, trapping him.
“Let’s go,” Jimmy cried. I ran away from Pryce, but I forgot all about Giovanni. Jimmy did, too. We forgot that he existed until he yelled.
“HELP,” Giovanni yelled.
“Oh, s***,” I said. “We forgot him. Go on. I’ll catch up.” Jimmy continued to run, as I ran back for my father. He was trapped beneath some ice, and I tried to pull it off with my bare hands. Meanwhile, Pryce was digging his way out.
“Hurry,” Giovanni ordered. I pulled out the Fighting Shard.
“Dynamic Punch,” I said to the shard. Its powers coursed through my body, and I punched the ice away. I pulled my father to his feet, and we were off in a dead sprint. As we passed the pile of rocks that my father was under, a beam of ice shot from under them, and Pryce came out. Giovanni and I were sprinting away from him, because we knew that he couldn’t catch up.
“BLIZZARD,” Pryce shouted. Tons of bits of ice flew from his hands directly at us. There was a cliff in front of us, and it looked like the only way out.
“Ready,” I asked Giovanni, clutching the Flying Shard in my hand. He just shook his head. “Too bad.” I grabbed him, and he screamed as we jumped off.
“ARGHHHHHHHHHH,” he screamed.
“FLY,” I shouted. Long six-foot wings sprouted from my back, and we jolted upward. The blizzard attack hit the wall, and I spotted Jimmy climbing the cliff with gear from his pack.
“What the h***,” Jimmy gasped. I grabbed him, and the three of us flew towards the shortcut of the Ice Path.
“Nice, huh,” I asked Jimmy, still admiring my wings.
“Where are we going,” he asked, while I was speeding up.
“I know a shortcut that will get us out of here,” I said. There was a crevice in the ceiling, and we flew through it. We landed on the ledge, and I recalled my wings, putting the shard back in the pouch.
“Where are we,” Giovanni asked.
“Above the Ice Path,” I said, looking at my watch. It was near morning. “We need to get a move on. As soon as the sun rises, we can’t stay out in the open. For all we know, Blackthorn City could be swarming with League guards. We have to start now if we want to get there before sunrise.” I started walking with my backpack. Since we were on top of the Ice Path, we might be able to be seen from a distance. We had to keep moving.
At about sunrise, we were all out of breath, and we reached the end of the path above the caves. I hopped down, and my foot stepped on something. It was an envelope. For some odd reason, it has my name on it. I picked it up and sliced it open with a knife from my backpack. It read:
Bob,
I knew that you would be here soon. So, I left you a little gift. I won’t say too much about it, though. That would just ruin the surprise. Until then,

The Man in the Black Trench Coat
I walked into the town. In the middle of the town there was a huge pile of something. I sprinted over to investigate. As I got closer, I wished that I’d stayed back. The mound was made up of bodies. Tons of bodies; I estimated about fifty. I saw what one of the bodies was wearing. It was a little girl. She was wearing a maroon velvet coat. These people were the people from Mt. Mortar. I fell to my knees. Jimmy walked up behind me.
“Oh…my…God,” he said, bowing his head. Giovanni looked almost bored.
“These murders will be avenged,” I said, coming to my feet, my fist almost breaking itself because I was clenching it so hard.
“We should give them a proper burial,” Jimmy said, his head still bowed.
“That’s not what obsessive Fighting trainers want,” I said. “Obsessive Fighting trainers are always cremated so no one else can possess their strength. Whoever did this knew it. Obsessive Fighting trainers like to be burned outside. Help me move them into straight lines.”
“Bob,” Giovanni said. “You can’t possibly be serious. We don’t have time for this.”
“DO IT,” I roared at my father. He looked angry, but the three of us moved the bodies into straight lines for a proper cremation. There were three rows of eighteen. Each of us took a row, and dropped a match on each person. The last person in my row was the girl with the velvet coat. I knelt down beside her.
“Bob,” Jimmy said, reaching out. Giovanni stopped him with his arm.
“Your death will be avenged,” I vowed. “You believed I could save Kanto and Johto. I will.” I dropped the last match on her, and stood up. For the first time, I realized that what Koga had told me in Violet City was true. He said, “You have forgotten that you are not saving just Misty, but Kanto and Johto in its entirety. You are one of the greatest Pokemon League Champions to ever live. You are one of the greatest Pokemon Masters to ever walk this earth. I knew a young man who took the job because he did not want the League to be corrupt. As far as I’m concerned, the young man died the day that he knew the League was not his to run any longer. You’re a fool, Bob Shepardson. You’re a fool, and you should keep your priorities in order. Brian is a casualty to a bitter war between good and evil. There have been millions. Sadly, there will continue to be many casualties between good and evil. Both Brian and Dave knew what they were getting into when you told them about this. It’s not your fault, Bob. You need to continue to be the Pokemon League Champion. You may not hold the title right now, but that is because of a lie. We need to save the world from the grips of evil. You need to realize who you are fighting for. You are fighting for people like Brian, Dave, and the rest of the hardworking people in this world. If that evil son of a b**** wins, then Brian died in vain. Don’t let that happen.” I remembered what my friend had said. He was right. I started walking down Route 45, Jimmy or Giovanni on either side.
We stopped to make camp near New Bark Town. I wasn’t sure if I wanted to go back yet. I didn’t know what I was going to find there. But, I thought, it had to be done.
“What’s the plan as of now,” Jimmy asked. The three of us leaned in.
“We’re going to infiltrate Viridian City base,” I said. “Find whichever ex-Master is there, and take off. We only have three minutes tops. Get that watch out of your pack, and set it for three minutes.”
“Exactly how will this all work out,” Giovanni asked. “I want details.”
“Fine,” I said. “Giovanni, you will take out the alarm system and the electric fence. Jimmy, you and I will go in under the fence. We’re going to limit the use of the shards within the base. Now, the safest place in Viridian City is the Gym. That’s where I’ll check. Jimmy will check the PokeCenter and PokeMart. Any questions?”
“What don’t you want me in there,” Giovanni asked.
“You know I don’t trust you,” I said. “But, if you betray us, I will kill you. You can count on it.”
“Why would I betray you,” Giovanni asked.
“God only knows why,” I retorted. “Just don’t screw up. We’re going to have to leave soon in order to make it right when it gets light enough for them to shut off the lights.”
“Why don’t I just shut them off while I’m at it, too,” Giovanni said.
“We don’t want them to know we’re in there,” I said. “They’ll find out eventually, but we want to keep it a secret as long as possible.”
“Anything else,” Jimmy asked.
“Yeah,” I said. “Now that you mention it, the juice will only be off for three minutes before the backup kicks in. After that, you’re stuck in there. Don’t get stuck in.”
“Let’s go,” Giovanni said. “I want this over as quick as possible.”
“Fine,” I said. Giovanni took his gun from his holster. He put ammo in it, and nodded. Jimmy did the same.
“Bob, where’s your gun,” Jimmy asked.
“I don’t carry guns,” I said.
“They will help you,” Jimmy said. I pulled out my katana and held it to his throat. He went up on his toes to avoid being cut.
“I’m more deadly with a katana,” I said, putting it back. We entered New Bark Town, which was deserted. Everyone had been sent to concentration camps in Johto. Only three camps existed in Johto: Goldenrod City, Ecruteak City, and Olivine City. Those were the largest towns on the map in Johto. We continued on into Kanto. Usually trainers training for the Elite Four would challenge everyone they saw. But there were none. Sadly I traveled on, remembering what had once gone on here. I remembered what my pokemon and I had gone through to fight the Elite Four. Before I knew it, we were at the gates to Viridian City. They were different than the last time I was there. Instead of wooden doors, they were electric fences. Instead of the town’s motto at the top, there was barbed wire. I looked at Giovanni.
“There’s the control box,” I said, pointing out a map. “Everybody meet up at the gate leading to Pewter City when the time is up. Giovanni, shoot this silver bullet up in the air when you’re ready. It goes off silent, and shines off the light of the sun. Go.” I handed him a bullet made of pure silver. Jimmy and I waited. Suddenly, I saw it. Giovanni had shot the bullet up into the air. I started my timer. I took out my katana, and sliced a corner off the gate big enough for Jimmy and I to go through.
“Good luck,” I said to Jimmy. He nodded and went the other way. There was a guard standing in front of the door to the Gym. Using the window of the Gym, I climbed up on the roof and dropped silently down behind him. I pinched a nerve on his shoulder, and he was out like a light. I stole his keys and turned around. Quickly, I looked at my timer.
“Two minutes,” I said quietly. I flipped through keys, jabbing them in the lock, until one worked. I pulled open the door, and slipped in. But, I was surprised to see the inside. Inside was a tiled floor, each tile a foot by a foot. Back in the Gym, I spotted someone sitting on an ice chair. Lorelei!
“Mom,” I asked inquisitively. She seemed to be sleeping, and woke up.
“Bob,” she said. I was about to step on the floor, but she stopped me. “NO! The floor is booby-trapped. Out of all four hundred tiles on the floor, only fifty are safe to walk on.”
“That could be a problem,” I said. I glanced at my watch. “I only have seventy seconds to get you, and get my team out of here.”
“Do something,” Lorelei said. “I have to get out of here.” I searched through my backpack. “Faster!” I decided to pull out my heat vision goggles. They allowed me to see heat areas. I pulled them out, and put them on. It seemed that if I went towards the wall diagonally, it would be safe. I took a step, and nothing happened. I moved quicker, and reached the wall. It was about halfway there. My timer read forty seconds. I sprinted, using both my goggles and luck. I reached her, and untied her.
“Let’s go,” I said. I picked her up, and looked back. The pattern had changed!
“If I am removed from my chair,” she said. “The pattern changes.” I jumped on a free square, and just kept hopping and jumping. I reached the exit. I put my mother down, and opened the door.
“Follow me,” I said. I ran towards the exit, looking at my watch. Still far away from the gate, my watch read ten seconds. Nine…eight…seven…six…five…
- End of Chapter Eight -
The Dragon Master IV: Chapter Nine

I reached the gate. Using my katana, I sliced the corner open. Lorelei slid through. Three seconds left on the clock. I crawled under the gate, but my backpack was caught. Two seconds left on the clock. I unclipped the pack, and squeezed through the gate. One second left. Knowing the time left on the clock, I pulled the pack out right before the power came back on. Electricity flowed through the gate, because one of the branches that fell on the tree was shocked and caught on fire. I looked at my companions, but Jimmy was the only one paying attention to me. Lorelei and Giovanni were staring at each other in pure hatred.
“What is he doing here,” Lorelei demanded, pointing at Giovanni.
“What is she doing here,” Giovanni said, pointing to Lorelei.
“You’re both here to help take down the League,” I said.
“But this b****** stayed with them,” Lorelei said, very angry.
“My Mastery was taken away because I wanted more power,” Giovanni said. “So I left. Got a problem with it?”
“I got a big problem with it,” Lorelei said, cracking her knuckles.
“Oh, you want to fight me, eh,” Giovanni asked, both of them stepping forward in each other’s faces. I stepped in between them, acting the peacemaker.
“Quit it,” I ordered them. “If you two are going to fight, this is not the time nor the place. Just shut up the both of you! Mom, change into this.” I handed her a black suit, like the rest of us were wearing.
“Fine,” she said, going behind a mass of trees for privacy. I turned on Giovanni.
“What the h*** is the matter with you,” I asked him. “She’s here to help, and you’re jumping all over her!”
“Listen,” Giovanni said. “The last time that the two of us were in the same room together was not long after we gave up you. It’s not easy seeing the person whom you haven’t seen for seventeen years! When we broke up-”
“Why did you break up, anyway,” I asked. “Besides the fact that you were with another woman at the same time!”
“She didn’t think it safe for her and I to stay together anymore,” Giovanni said. “Both our Masteries were developing, though she didn’t know about mine, so she went to the League for help. Remember, there weren’t very many Masters back then.”
“Do me a favor,” I said. “Just try and act civilized until this thing blows over, okay?” Lorelei came back, and she looked ready to go.
“Let’s go,” she said. “I want this sorry excuse for a man out of my sight as soon as humanly possible.”
“Join the club,” I said. “We’re going though Diglet Tunnel.” The four of us walked on, and it was silent for a long time. Jimmy ended up breaking the silence.
“How many concentration camps are there in Kanto,” he asked. I was about to say that I didn’t know, but Lorelei had an answer ready.
“There are seven all together,” she said. “There are three in Johto: Goldenrod City, Ecruteak City, and Olivine city. There are four in Kanto: Viridian City, Cinnabar Island, Saffron City, and Celadon City.”
“And how did you find out this information,” Giovanni asked suspiciously.
“I overheard it,” Lorelei complied. “We need to get to Saffron City, and fast. There will be more than one ex-Master in the rest of these camps.” We continued to walk towards the tunnel. Once we reached it, we went through it with ease, and came through the other side. Vermillion City was empty, as all of the other cities were. Behind the PokeMart there was a new building. A man and his Machop were always building it whenever I passed through, and it looked like it was finished. I walked up to it and pulled on the door. It wouldn’t open. A camera whirred towards me, looking at me. I looked into the camera, and my eyes opened wide. But so did the door. An arm shot out, and pulled me and my companions in.
“You’re alive,” Brock said, elated. I was shocked.
“Brock,” I gasped. “How did you get out of Indigo Plateau? Why are you here, of all places?”
“I got out the same way everyone else did,” Brock said. “I was being kept in a concentration camp in Celadon City. I escaped, and made my way to my uncle’s place, here!” Jimmy moved forward, interrupting my thoughts.
“Who is this,” Jimmy asked.
“Brock,” I said. “Jimmy, meet Brock, the ex-Rock Master. Brock, meet Jimmy, Bruno’s brother.”
“Nice to meet you,” Brock said, shaking Jimmy’s hand. “Now it’s your turn. What are your guys doing here?” I explained to him our story, and where we were up to now.
“Now, we’re getting a small army together,” I said. “We’re going to take on the League and get Misty back.” I looked at Brock.
“Wow,” he said. “I knew that if you weren’t dead, you were planning something huge. But not this huge…”
“What do you mean,” I asked him.
“You’ve saved the world before,” Brock said. “Numerous times. But…can you do it without your Mastery?”
“I can,” I said. “I will, too. I am not just fighting for Misty, anymore. I realize what I owe to Kanto and Johto. I am fighting for them.”
“Count me in,” Brock said. “Whatever we need, my uncle can provide anything. Just name it.” I walked over to Brock’s uncle.
“We need guns, ammunition, and stuff to carry it all in,” I said. “We need League uniforms, fake ID’s, skeleton keys, and skeleton keycards. We need fingerprint creators, and voice changers. We need anything and everything that can get us in and out of a maximum-security concentration camp undetected. Can you get us these?” The old man looked at me as if I was crazy.
“Anything else,” he finally said. I shook my head. “Then, yes I can.” The old man went back to the back of his house, and came back. He stopped, just looking at me.
“What,” I asked, nonplussed. He motioned me towards him. I followed him to his back room, where there were weapons beyond imagination. The others also came back here. The old man got a stack of League uniforms.
“Try these on,” he said. “All of you. Then, come back, and I will give you weapons.” I took a uniform and walked out of the room. The others did, and we all found a separate room. I discarded my own clothes, and put on the League uniform. It fit surprisingly well. I went back to the room with the old man.
“It fits,” I said. He nodded.
“What kind of gun do you want,” the old man asked. “I have nearly every kind. Do you wish to have any concealed weapons?”
“We’ll each take two handguns,” I said. “And holsters to go with them. Not to mention extra ammo.” He nodded, and went back to looking. He came back with a belt and a box of ammo along with two guns. I put on the belt, and opened the box of ammo. There were about fifty clips. I had room on my belt for twenty. While I was loading my belt, the rest of my team came in, each wearing a League uniform. When I was done loading all of the clips into my belt, I put the two handguns in their holsters. The old man went away, and came back with ammo and guns for everyone. The League jacket that I was wearing concealed the two handguns that I was carrying.
“I forgot something,” the old man said. He scurried off to the back room. I looked at Brock.
“Your uncle is very weird,” I said.
“Yeah,” Brock said. “He has all of this because he believes that he Kanto and Johto will go into a war against each other. He’s kind of weird.” The old man came back, carrying five rifles.
“Standard issue,” the old man said. “The League gives one of these to each of its soldiers. Bet you that you didn’t know where all of the funds were going, eh, Mr. Shepardson?” The old man snickered and pulled out a box of bullets.
“Lance was the one that was into weapons,” I said. “I halted them. The soldiers are given guns, but only in time of war.”
“Like now,” the old man said. “Each of you take a box and stuff it in your coat pocket.” We did as we were told, and the old man brought back five radios.
“How do you work these,” Jimmy asked as they were handed out.
“Eleven frequencies,” the old man said. “The League can hack into all of them but number ten and eleven. Use ten unless you want to be heard. Use eleven if you want to contact me.” I put mine on my belt, as did everyone else. The old man went back in his storeroom and came back with a box of miscellaneous stuff. He threw out a key ring, with some objects on it. There was a key, and keycard, a small device that looked like a flashlight, and another small device, this one looking like a microphone.
“How do you work these,” I asked. The old man pointed to the items respectively.
“Here,” the old man said. “This is a skeleton key. Insert it into any lock. It’s just like picking a lock, but quicker. This next one is a skeleton keycard. Just slide it in the slot, and the door or whatever it is will open. This next one that looks like a flashlight creates fingerprints that you can slip on your fingers. Just find the print that you need, shine the light on it, and the slipcover will come out the bottom. This last one is a voice changer. Make the person whose voice you need talk into it while your finger is holding the button down. Then, press the button below it and talk into it. You will sound exactly like the person that you need to. Here.” He handed me five pens.
“What are these,” I asked him.
“Take the cap off,” he said. “When you do, it will emit a pulse that will knock out all listening devices in the area, in case someone is bugging the room. Good luck.” I nodded, and turned to my companions.
“Let’s go,” I said. Everyone else nodded in agreement.
“Wait,” the old man said. He pulled some paper out of his pocket. “ID’s. You’ll need these to access the base. Good luck.” I grabbed them and handed them out. They already had our pictures on them.
“Uncle,” Brock said. “Could you meet us tonight at midnight on the route in-between Celadon City and Saffron City? Bring some more guns and at least three more suits and supplies. If you’re caught, say that you’re a hiker, and then gas the guards.” The old man nodded and the five of us set out for Saffron City.
Looking around before we went out of Vermillion City, I motioned the others out. We started to walk down the route, but we heard something. I peeked out from behind a tree, and saw about ten guards sitting around a fire. I was concentrating on listening to them talk.
“This war is so f****** stupid,” one of them said. “I wish we could rebel against that new Pokemon League Champion. I mean, seriously now, who are we fighting?” The other guards murmured in agreement.
“I say that we just stop doing our job,” another said, getting the troops rallied up. “We should infiltrate the camps and take over!”
“Yeah,” the troops rallied in agreement. I chose this time to make our appearance. I stepped out, and they saw me. One of them pulled a gun on me, and I aimed my rifle at him.
“Hey,” I said. “Why don’t you just put your gun down, and I’ll do the same. I’m on your side.” The one that looked like the general looked suspiciously at me. My four companions also stepped out from behind the bushes.
“You look familiar,” the general said. “Have we met somewhere?” I recognized this guy. I personally chose him as the leader of the best of the best.
“Maybe we went to training camp together,” I said, shrugging my shoulders.
“What year,” the general asked. I thought quickly. I appointed him for command in 2003. You had to have at least two years of training.
“2002,” I asked. The man looked suspiciously again. Then he smiled.
“That must be it,” he said. “Yeah, now I remember. I bunked with you!”
“Yeah,” I said, smiling. My four friends looked perplexed.
“Huh,” Brock asked.
“Just play along,” I said quietly, with my teeth clenched. They all nodded, and I took a seat next to my old “friend.”
“Where you headed,” the general asked.
“Saffron City,” I said. “Me and my group here are being transferred.”
“Aren’t you being escorted,” he asked.
“They couldn’t spare anyone from Viridian at the moment,” I half-lied. “There was a break in.”
“Wow,” the general said. “Whoever would try something like that is either very brave, or very crazy.”
“No s***,” I said. “How long you guys staying here?”
“Just tonight,” he said. “Then, we’re raiding Vermillion City to see if anyone escaped.” Brock’s jaw dropped. Jimmy elbowed him, and he closed it again.
“What’s wrong with your buddy,” the general asked me, nodding to Brock.
“Yawning,” Brock said.
“Right,” the general said, looking more suspicious of my crew and me than ever. “How long you staying here before continuing?” He looked at me. I checked my watch. It read 4:30 A.M.
“We need to get there by 6,” I said. “So we should leave now.”
“Well,” the general said. “It’s been a pleasure seeing you again. See you later.” We shook hands and started to walk away. As Lorelei passed one of the guards, he slapped her on the behind, and winked at her. In the blink of an eye, Giovanni spin kicked the guard, knocking him out.
“Hey,” I said, moving over to him.
“It’s all right,” the general said. “That guy has always been a pervert. Serves him right.”
“Yeah,” I said. The five of us walked away into the dark wilderness. Brock got right on his walkie-talkie and dialed up his uncle.
“Uncle,” he said. “Grab whatever you need and leave…That means extra suits, weapons, everything…‘Why?’…Troops are coming to wipe out Vermillion City…Stay in the underground that goes from Celadon to Lavender…Okay…Bye. He’s getting out of there.”
“That was close,” I said. “Am I right when I assume that he can take care of himself?”
“Yeah,” Brock said.
“Good,” I replied. “Let’s get moving. Now they’re going to expect us at 6:00 A.M. That means that we’re going to have to go in early, and in groups of two and three. Any ideas?”
“Me and you should stay together,” Jimmy said. “Brock doesn’t know either Giovanni or Lorelei that well, so he should come with us.” I was getting edgy. Any moment now…
“NO,” Giovanni and Lorelei screamed together.
“This is the only way that it can work,” Jimmy pleaded. Lorelei looked at me.
“Sorry, Mom, but he’s right,” I said sorrowfully. “But you and Giovanni know each other a lot better than anybody else does.”
“Fine,” she said. “Bob, I’m doing this for you, not to give this b****** any joy.” Giovanni did a double take.
“What,” he asked, outraged. “Me? Have any joy from being with you? Over my dead body!”
“With any luck,” Lorelei said, turning away from him. Giovanni also turned away, and Jimmy and I shrugged at each other.
“At least they’re talking,” he said.
“Believe me,” I said. “What they are doing now, ignoring each other, is what they consider talking because they are in a mile radius of each other. I’m surprised she didn’t kill him when she first saw him.”
“Let’s get moving,” Jimmy said.
“Yeah,” I said, dragging my parents to me. “Before we do, let me just say one thing to you two. If you two and your fighting screw up this mission, I will be so pissed. Remember that.” I turned from them and walked down the path.
At about 5:00 A.M., the five of us came up to the gate. Giovanni and Lorelei were about to go off, but I stopped them.
“Remember,” I said. “Be subtle. Don’t’ forget to radio for help on channel 10. Go in the gate a little ways down the path.”
“Fine,” both my parents said in unison. They went off, and Jimmy, Brock, and I stepped up to the gate. The guard stopped us.
“Declare you purpose for entering this camp,” the guard said.
“We are being transferred here,” I said.
“Do you have ID,” the guard asked. I pulled out my ID and handed it to him. He looked it over. “What about your people?” I took theirs, and handed them to the guard.
“Is everything in order,” I asked.
“Yes, sir,” said the guard, unlocking the gate. The three of us walked right in, and got our ID’s back. I saw Giovanni and Lorelei walk through the other South Gate. She nodded towards me, and I nodded back. They were going off to the Gym. Jimmy, Brock, and I, however, were going to Silph Co., the largest company in Kanto.
We flashed out badges and the door guard saluted us as we walked through. League guards were everywhere, waiting for orders to be given out.
“Where do you think the ex-Master will be,” Jimmy whispered.
“I don’t know,” I whispered back. “The only other time I’ve been in here, they wouldn’t allow me to go past the first floor.”
“Well, we can now,” Jimmy said. The three of us walked to the elevator, and I pulled out my skeleton key. I stuck it in the lock, and twisted it. The elevator door opened, and we stepped in. I pulled out the key, I closed the door, and stuck the key into the number pad. I typed in floor eleven, which was the tallest one. Without delay, I pulled out the pen that Brock’s uncle had given me, and pulled off the cap.
“We can talk now,” I said.
“What are we going to do if we get caught,” Brock asked, worried.
“I don’t know,” I said. “But we won’t have to worry about that.”
“Why not,” Brock asked.
“We’re not going to get caught,” I replied. Jimmy looked at me.
“Bob,” Jimmy said. “Did you know that Giovanni used to work here? He was the CEO. He knows the floor plans, secret passages, down to the wiring system. He gave me this map in case we need it.” He handed me a slip of paper, and I looked at it. it was a floor plan, with wiring drawn out in the walls. It showed which wires cut off which floor, and some secret passages that could lead us through undetected.
“Good,” I said. “But, we’re out of time to talk.” The elevator dinged, and I put the pen away. With my rifle over my shoulder, I walked out of the elevator. This top floor was weird. Cells upon cells where things were being tested. I saw a room where two guards were beating on a woman for information. I grimaced until I noticed whom they were beating on. My eyes turned wide, and I opened the door with my skeleton key. I opened the door, and I was right…it was Duplica.
“Get out of here,” one of the guards said. “We’re under orders to get information from this b**** under any means necessary.”
“I’m afraid that won’t be happening,” I said. “The Pokemon League Champion wishes to question her himself. I will have to take her.”
“Fine,” the guard said, stepping out of the room. The other one stepped out of the room, glaring at me. I walked up to Duplica, and she flinched. Brock opened up his pen cap to disrupt the frequency.
“Duplica,” I said, talking quietly in case the two guards were still listening. “It’s me, Bob. I’m going to get you out of here.”
“Bob,” she asked questioningly. She was about to look happy, but I twisted her arm to hurt her.
“I’m sorry about that,” I said. “But pretend not to know me. I’ll explain everything later. Okay?”
“Okay,” she said, wiping tears from her eyes as I released her arm.
“I’m going to handcuff you now and take you downstairs and out of here,” I said. I slipped her wrists through her handcuffs and tightened them. She got to her feet, and we walked out of the room.
“Wait,” she said. “There’s another of us inside Silph Co.”
“Who is it,” I asked.
“Erika,” Duplica said.
“Where is she,” I asked.
“I don’t know,” Duplica sobbed. “I just caught sight of her being taken down the elevator.” She started to cry. I turned to Jimmy.
“Get her out of here,” I said. “I’ll get Erika.” Jimmy nodded, and took Duplica down the elevator. I watched them leave, and went down a hallway with many cells. Most of the people in each cell were just normal citizens. I felt sorry for them, and was saddened the way that they looked at me. But I thought of that I was going to save them soon. I came to the end of the hallway, where an elevator was. Pushing my skeleton key into the lock, the door opened. Inside were two guards, with a prisoner. This was no ordinary prisoner. It was Erika. My eyes opened wide as I stepped in. One of the guards pressed a button to go to the eighth floor. I looked up at a camera, and felt around the back, while staying out of view from it. Unhooking the cord from it, the camera turned off. I felt the elevator move, and Erika started to whimper. The other guard raised a hand to hit her, so I stuck out my forearm to block it.
“What the f*** do you think you’re doing,” the guard asked in rage.
“Don’t you dare hit her,” I said in fury.
“Why not,” the other guard asked. “We were told to get information about the location of the Rebels any way we deemed fit.”
“That includes beating this poor woman to death,” I asked, fist clenched.
“If that’s the way it has to be,” the first guard said. “Then so be it.” He didn’t take another breath after he stopped talking before I laid a massive punch on his face, knocking him out cold. The other guard abandoned Erika and came towards me. I easily took him down with a spin kick. Erika looked shocked and scared.
“Erika, it’s me,” I said. “It’s me, Bob.” She gasped.
“I thought you were dead,” Erika gasped.
“I get that a lot,” I replied.
“What are you doing here,” she asked.
“We can talk once we get out of here,” I said. Using my skeleton key, I unhooked her handcuffs. I opened the elevator door, and three guards were waiting for me there with their guns drawn. Quickly, I closed the elevator, and popped the top hatch to the top of the elevator. Bullets riddled the doorway just as Erika and I got out.
“Let’s go up to the roof,” Erika said.
“Just climb the rope,” I said. She started to climb even faster when they started to shoot at us from the elevator cavity. I pulled out a knife from my boot and sliced the cable. The elevator plummeted down to the first floor. Erika and I crawled out the top. We started to run for the fire escape, but a couple of guards came up it. We switched our direction for the stairwell, but some more guards popped out of there, too. Erika and I were standing on the ledge, waiting for sure doom.
“Come down and let us arrest you,” a guard said, drawing his gun on us. The rest of the guards drew their guns, too. I looked down off the ledge. It was a long drop. But I had to do something.
“On the count of three,” I whispered. “Fall backwards.”
“Are you crazy,” she whispered back. “We’ll die.” But I had already started counting.
“One,” I said.
“No way,” she said.
“Two,” I continued. Pulling the Flying Shard out of my pocket, and grabbing the back of Erika’s dress, I prepared myself.
“You better not,” she said, noticing my hand on her dress.
“THREE,” I shouted. I yanked her backwards, and we plummeted downwards.
“AAIIEEEEEEEEEEEEE,” Erika screamed.
“FLY,” I shouted. Six-foot wings sprouted from my back, I caught Erika, and we took flight. I landed on the ground just in time for them to start shooting at us. They stopped, and started to run down the fire escape. I heard a gunshot about ten feet to my left, and looked. There I saw Giovanni and Lorelei holding a gun to the other’s head, both of their fingers tight on the trigger. Both of them were waiting for the other to shoot. We didn’t have time for this, as the other guards were already coming towards us…
- End of Chapter Nine -

The Dragon Master IV: Chapter Ten

“You traitor,” Lorelei hissed. Still holding the gun at Giovanni, her eyes read pure anger.
“Hey,” Giovanni said, getting nervous. “Listen, Lorelei-”
“Don’t ‘Listen, Lorelei’ me, you son of a b****,” Lorelei spat in loathing. “Remember the last time you said ‘Listen, Lorelei?’ I do. It was when you tried to do the honorable thing and asked me to marry you. Thank God I said no. If I had said yes, this gun would be at my head!”
“Lorelei, it’s not what you think,” Giovanni said.
“Then what is it, you b******,” Lorelei demanded.
“I knew nothing about this,” Giovanni said, panicking now. I knew that he wouldn’t shoot her, but she would shoot him. I pulled out the Grass Shard and tossed it to Erika.
“Hold off those guards,” I said.
“Razor Leaf,” Erika cried. Razor-sharp leaves shot out of the shard, hitting the guards. She had them under control. I ran up to my parents.
“Both of you put your guns down,” I ordered.
“If I put my gun down, she’ll shoot me,” Giovanni said.
“Will you,” I asked Lorelei.
“Yes,” Lorelei replied without hesitation.
“I’m truly sorry about this,” I said. I twisted both their wrists, forcing them to drop their weapons. I picked both of them up, and holstered them in Giovanni and Lorelei’s holsters.
“Bob,” Giovanni said. “What the h***?”
“Let’s go,” I said. “We were caught. MOVE! MOVE!” I called to Erika, and she stopped holding off the guards so we could get through the gate.
But we couldn’t get there in time. They locked and barred the gate, waiting for us to get there so they could arrest us. I quickly pulled out the Ground Shard.
“FISSURE,” I cried. Leaping into the air, I did a flip and landed on the ground again. A crack in the ground raced towards the gate. The ground attack smashed into the gate with full force, blowing it right off its hinges. The guards fell to their feet at the impact, leaving it clear for us to get through. We ran through the gate, and didn’t stop until we reached the Underground path that led to Lavender Town. We entered it, and found four other people sitting inside of it, all looking very distressed. We walked in, and they all brightened up.
“Bob,” Duplica exclaimed, coming up to me and throwing her arms around me. “Explain everything to me.”
“I’m lost, too,” Erika said.
“My death was faked,” I said. “The new Pokemon League Champion just said that so he could have control of Kanto and Johto. After he kidnapped Misty, I confronted him many times to try and get her back. I met up with Koga and Aya. I was fighting Will and Lt. Surge and Will took my Mastery from me. We met up with Bruno, and he led us to Mahogany Town, where we joined forces with Jimmy and his Rebel team, and Giovanni and his Team Rocket. Ever since we’ve been freeing Masters. Once we free them all, we will take over the League. It’ll be just like old times.” I smiled. Erika seemed satisfied, but Duplica looked at me as if I was crazy.
“Are you insane,” Duplica asked. “The League’s army is over five thousand strong!”
“Koga, Bruno, and Aya have it all under control,” I said. “I don’t know how, but they have it. Believe me, Duplica, we will win this thing.” She looked at me and tried to say something, but a sigh only came out. She looked at the others.
“Bob,” she said finally. “I don’t know how we’re going to pull this off. It’s near impossible.”
“It was impossible to take on the League three years ago,” I said. “But we did it then.”
“This is different,” she said. “We had our Masteries back then. We had an edge. All that’s gone now.”
“We have a different edge this time,” I replied. “We’re stronger, smarter, we have the advantage here.”
“Fine,” she said. “I know how much Misty means to you, and I realize how much Kanto and Johto mean to you. I’ll help.”
“That’s all I ask,” I said. “Should we get them prepped?”
“Yes,” Brock’s uncle said. He turned to Erika and Duplica. “My name is Timothy. I will be providing you with the supplies you need to infiltrate the concentration camps.” He handed them a pile of stuff and told them to go put it on. When they came back, they looked just like the League soldiers.
“Ready,” I asked them. They both nodded. Brock turned to his uncle.
“Uncle,” he said. “Meet us in Pallet Town next with some more supplies.” Timothy nodded, and we walked out of the underground path. Lorelei was eyeing Giovanni suspiciously, and it was then that I remembered.
“What did go on in Saffron City between you two,” I asked suddenly.
“It was nothing,” Giovanni said.
“You got us caught,” Lorelei retaliated. “You see, he tried to call you on his radio to inform you that there was no ex-Master in the Gym. But, his radio was set on frequency nine. The League heard him, and somebody fired a shot at me. I assumed it him, and put the gun to his forehead. He pulled his out, too. That’s when you found us.”
“Next, time, Giovanni,” I said. “Be more careful. You could’ve gotten us all killed.” Giovanni was furious at Lorelei, and I could tell it in his eyes.
“Let’s keep on moving,” Jimmy said to break the silence. I pushed on, and the others followed.
We reached the gate the Celadon City, and numerous guards stopped us. They searched us, and demanded out ID. We fed them the same story that we told the Saffron City guards. They took it in, and let us through.
“Where do we go now,” Jimmy asked.
“I don’t know,” I said. “The only place where one could hide and ex-Master would be the Gym in this town. No major companies. Just the Gym here.”
“The game corner,” Giovanni blurted out. “I used it as a base while in Team Rocket.”
“Good,” I said. “You, Lorelei, Duplica, and I will check that out. Jimmy, Brock, and Erika will check the Gym. This is Erika’s hometown, after all. Plus, it is her Gym.”
“Right,” Jimmy said. Giovanni and Lorelei were extremely mad, but didn’t say anything. We split up, and my group headed directly for the Game Corner. I walked up to the door, but it was locked.
“D***,” I cursed quietly. I looked for a lock to pick with my skeleton key. But there wasn’t a doorknob. Instead, there was a keycard slot. I slid my skeleton keycard through it, and the door popped open. The four of us walked right in and locked the door behind us. Giovanni led the way.
“Over here,” he motioned with his hand. He ripped down a poster from the wall, and a fingerprint analyzer was there.
“Who’s fingerprints does it take,” I asked.
“Mine,” Giovanni said. “It used to just be a switch, but that d*** Ash Ketchum found it and flushed me out. So I had to resort to this.” He put his fingers on the slots, and a door opened that led to a staircase. The four of us walked down the staircase, and came to a labyrinth of moving tiles.
“What the h*** did you have this here for,” I asked him.
“Protection,” he said, shrugging. “Follow me.” He stepped on a tile, and was rocketed left. I did the same, and ended up right behind him. Lorelei and Duplica followed suit. We zoomed around on the tiles for some time, until we came to an elevator. Giovanni looked lost.
“What’s the matter,” Lorelei asked.
“This is a fingerprint scanner,” he said. “Last time I was here, it was a retina scan. This won’t take my fingerprints.”
“Then let’s see who’s it does take,” I said. I pulled out my fingerprint scanner, and shined the light on the single slot. The machine in my hand beeped, and a slipcover fell out of the bottom. I stuck it on my finger, and placed it in the slot.
“Access granted,” the machine beeped. The doors shot open, and the four of us walked in. Giovanni pressed B4 on the keypad.
“This will take us down to my office,” he explained. “That’s the highest security room in the place.” The elevator moved downwards, and when we reached the bottom floor, the doors sprang open. Four guards were standing guard at the door to Giovanni’s office, and they started to fire at us. We ducked behind the walls, and pulled out some weapons of our own.
“Why are they firing at us,” I yelled to Giovanni.
“They are most likely ordered to shoot anyone that comes down here,” Giovanni shouted back. I pulled out my handgun, and shot four times and hit a person. I heard him scream. I didn’t like to kill people like that. We finished off the guards, and ran up to the door to Giovanni’s office.
“Go, Puff,” I said, letting out a teal pokeball. My starting Dragonite exploded from its pokeball.
“DRAAA,” Puff cried.
“I know it’s been a while,” I told him. “But I’ve been busy. Hyper Blast that door away.” Puff sucked in energy, and fired a tiny beam at the door. Right before the shot reached the door, it exploded into a massive beam. The door was blown was off of its hinges. We ran in, and waited for the smoke to clear. Inside of the room was Whitney, the ex-Normal Master.
“Bob,” she asked in disbelief. “What are you doing here? I thought you were-”
“I know,” I replied, getting tired of hearing that. “But you have to get out of here.” I ran up to her chair, and cut off the bindings. I gave her something to change into, and Giovanni and I left the room. When Whitney was done, her, Lorelei, and Duplica came out.
“Where do we go from here,” Lorelei asked me.
“Well,” Giovanni started. “We go-”
“I was asking Bob, you b******,” Lorelei cut him off coldly. “Bob, where are we going?”
“We have to rendezvous with the others on Cycling Road,” I said. “Our double-agent inside the League made it so a vehicle will take us down to Fucshia City. After we’re through there, we’ll head to Cinnabar Island, and then to the League.” They all nodded, and we walked into the elevator and out of the game corner. I turned on my radio to frequency ten, and talked to Jimmy.
“Where are you guys now,” Jimmy asked.
“We’re just leaving the game corner with Whitney,” I replied. “Where are you?”
“Waiting on Cycling Road with Darla Blaine,” Jimmy answered.
“Good,” I said. “Over and out.” I turned off my radio, and the five of us walked out of Celadon City without a problem. After we were out of hearing distance of the guards, Whitney turned to me.
“I think something’s up,” she said. “That was too easy.”
“It will get harder,” I said. “We will face many more challenges before we win this thing.” We entered Cycling Road, and Jimmy, Brock, Erika, and Darla were waiting there in a Jeep. Jimmy motioned me to him.
“I’ve already briefed her,” he whispered in my ear. “What about Whitney?”
“Done,” I said. “Let’s get moving.” I slapped the side of the Jeep, and it started. I hopped in the back of the other Jeep with everyone else, and we started moving, too.
“How long is this ride going to take,” Duplica asked me.
“About five hours,” I replied. “We’ll get there around midnight.” Nobody complained.
“It’ll feel weird to be going back,” Duplica thought out loud. “I haven’t been back since I left with you three years ago. I wonder how my home is, and how my friends are…”
“No offense, Duplica,” Whitney said. “But I’ll bet that your ‘friends’ forgot about you the moment they found out that you were a Pokemon Master. Mine did. I never came out until Bob told me to help him. It was the only way…”
“None taken,” Duplica asked. “But here’s to hoping…” We were all sleep deprived, and decided to sleep. I fell into a sound sleep, a kind of sleep that I had not had since before Delilah was killed. It was bliss…
I was awoken with a jolt from the Jeep stopping. It was dark out, and I poked everyone else awake. They all awoke with a start, and we hopped out of the Jeep. I went to talk to the driver.
“You can go back now,” I said. “We won’t be needing your assistance anymore.”
“Yes, sir,” the driver said. He radioed his comrade, and they left. The nine of us walked into the deserted Fuchsia City, and made our way to the coastline. Usually there would be fishermen here, fishing their hearts out. But there were none. They had all been taken to the concentration camps. I looked up into the moon, and remembered the times that Misty and I spent here.
All of a sudden, a huge ball of fire appeared in the sky. It caught the attention of everyone in the group.
“What the h***,” Giovanni swore. After the ball of fire dissipated, electricity fired from the opposite direction. It lit up the sky, and I saw two figures that I hoped I would never have to encounter.
“Lugia and Ho-oh,” I said quietly. “They’re going to destroy each other…along with the world…”
- End of Chapter Ten -

The Dragon Master IV: Chapter Eleven

“Oh…my…God,” Lorelei gasped.
“I have to stop them,” I said, determined.
“Go,” Lorelei nodded.
“We have to stop the League,” Giovanni said. “Let them destroy each other. Who cares?”
“I care,” I said. “If we don’t stop them, they will destroy the world before we can stop the League! I’m going. You never tried to protect me like a father would before, so why start now?” I pulled out the Flying Shard. Giovanni was left speechless.
“Good luck,” Brock said. I nodded.
“Flying Shard of the Elemental Medallion,” I said. “FLY!” Six-foot wings sprouted from my back, and I took off. Dust flew after I took flight. I sped towards Lugia and Ho-oh. They were still trading attacks on and off.
“HOARGH,” Ho-oh shouted as it released a Sacred Fire at Lugia. Lugia dodged it.
“LUARGH,” Lugia cried at Ho-oh as it fired a Water Surge at Ho-oh. Water splashed in Ho-oh’s face, but it sustained the damage. I needed to enter this fight now. Pulling out the Dragon Shard, I decided my attack. I would use my natural Mastery to win.
“Dragon Shard,” I cried. “RAIN DANCE!” Clouds rolled in, and water poured in from the sky. Thunder swept across the sky. Ho-oh and Lugia kept on fighting.
Ho-oh used Fire Drill on Lugia. Lugia was badly damaged, but didn’t give up. I would’ve thought that the rain would’ve put them out, but I guess that I need to change my strategy.
“ELEMENTAL STORM,” I cried. A stream of fire, ice, and thunder blasted down from the sky and split into two beams. One hit Lugia, and the other hit Ho-oh.
While I had my advantage, I decided to strike again. Pulling out the Water Shard, I aimed it at the two legendary pokemon.
“WATER SPOUT,” I cried. A tornado came down out of the clouds and touched the water, sucking up the water. The newly formed waterspout split into two of them, one headed for Lugia and one headed for Ho-oh.
Lugia shot a Zap Cannon at the one headed for it, deadening it completely. Ho-oh fired a Swift at its waterspout, and it was drained of energy instantly, making it die out. Lugia and Ho-oh decided to take out me first before trying to defeat one another. A Thunder Drill was headed for me from Lugia and a Fire Blast from Ho-oh. Suddenly, a shot of water fired from nowhere and put out the Fire Blast. Then, a spurt of flames knocked the Thunder Drill from the sky. Next, a Thunderstorm attack came from the clouds and knocked Lugia and Ho-oh down. I looked around me, and Suicune, Entei, and Raikou were standing on the shore, each one just finished attacking.
“Holy s***,” I said. Ho-oh and Lugia were plummeting towards the water. Lugia would be fine, but Ho-oh would drown. I had to keep them from destroying the world. Quickly, I threw two teal pokeballs at the two legendaries. The balls hit the pokemon, and they were sucked in and captured instantly. They zoomed back to my hands, but now I had a different problem. The three legendary dogs were attacking each other! Quickly, without their noticing, I whipped three teal pokeballs at the other three legends. The devices caught them by surprise, and they were scared so bad that they didn’t fight the pokeballs. They zoomed back to me, and I flew slowly back towards the group of ex-Masters that I was traveling with.
“That…was…amazing,” Brock said. I looked at the five shrunk pokeballs in my hand.
“Right after this thing is done,” I said. “They are going back to where they belong.” I put the five legends in my breast pocket, and released Puff, Dragon, Dragonight, and Scarlet. A couple of people hopped on per pokemon, and we sailed off towards Cinnabar Island, the last part of our journey before we took on the League…
We landed on the coast of Cinnabar Island at about 3 in the morning. I nudged some people awake and I returned my dragon pokemon.
“Same groups as Celadon City raid,” I said. “Jimmy, Brock, Erika, and Darla enter around the other side. We’ll meet back here within twenty minutes.” They nodded and went off to go around the other side of the island.
“Last one,” I said. “You guys ready?” Duplica nodded, Whitney didn’t do anything, and Giovanni and Lorelei were on opposite ends of the group so they didn’t have to interact with each other.
“Shall we,” Duplica asked.
“Yeah,” I said. We went up to the gate, and the guard was sleeping, so we just went right in. The less trouble we went through, the better. The other group was going to the Gym, while we were going to the Cinnabar Mansion. The door had always been locked until recently, when the owner stopped caring. It had been looted, and nothing was really left of value there, so the League cleaned it up, and was using it secretly. They kept the door unlocked, as the cover for it was a “Homeless Shelter.” But I knew that it wasn’t. I just gave someone permission to use it.
I walked up to the door, and walked in. My companions walked in, and I closed the door behind us.
“Where do we check first,” Whitney asked.
“Let’s all split up,” I said. “Everyone keep your radios on frequency ten so we can talk to each other.” They all nodded, and went off into different parts of the mansion. I walked up a set of stairs, and entered a pitch-black room. I felt my way around the room for a light switch. I found one, and clicked it on. Suddenly, a trapdoor closed over the staircase.
“Bob, you found anything,” Lorelei’s voice came over the radio.
“Nope,” I said. “But I’m locked in here. Just keep looking.”
“Okay,” Lorelei replied. I pulled out the Normal Shard. I told the Normal Shard The Normal Shard glowed powerfully, and the room brightened up. At the edge of the room, I saw a steel door. Peeking inside the window, I saw who I was after.
“Morty,” I gasped. He saw me and his face brightened up. I thought he said “Bob,” but I couldn’t hear him because of the steel doors. I charged the doors, but all that resulted in was a bunch of pain. Rubbing my shoulder, I thought of which shard would be most advantageous in this situation.
Snapping my fingers, I pulled out the Normal Shard. Morty looked confused inside of his little cell.
“Strength,” I whispered to the Normal Shard. Instantaneously, the power of the shard seemed to course through my veins. I tried ramming the door again, but this time, I went straight through it.
“Bob,” Morty said. “What are you doing here? I thought you were-”
“Dead,” I finished for him. “I’m not, as you can see. Let’s get out of here.”
“Break the bonds on my wrists,” Morty said. I nodded, and pulled the ropes off his hands.
“I have Morty,” I said into my radio. “I repeat, I have Morty. Evacuate the building. I’m setting explosive charges in the middle of the building. This place has done too much evil. It should have been destroyed years ago. Evacuate the building.”
“Okay,” Lorelei said.
“Okay,” Giovanni said.
“Okay,” Whitney said.
“Okay,” Duplica said. Going to the trapdoor, I pulled it open with the strength of the Normal Shard. Morty went down the ladder with ease, and I followed. We met Whitney at the bottom.
“Go with her,” I said. Morty and Whitney ran off, and I rushed towards the estimated middle of the mansion. Pulling a device out of my jacket that Timothy gave me, I stuck it to the wall, and switched the setting from “trip mine” to “remote.” Pulling out the remote, I sprinted away as fast as possible. Coming out the door, I caught sight of the other five members of my team. Morty was already dressed in a League outfit, complete with weapons. The six of us ex-Masters walked down to the rendezvous point where the others would meet us.
“How many ex-Masters have you saved,” Morty asked curiously.
“Twelve not counting me,” I said. “Number thirteen is Karen.” Suddenly, someone on my radio started to talk.
“Bob,” Jimmy said. “We’ve got Karen, but there have been complications…”
“What kind of complications,” I demanded.
“We’re surrounded by League soldiers,” I said. “We’ll need one of two things to get out.”
“What do you need,” I asked.
“Either a really good distraction,” Jimmy said. “Or a miracle.”
“I’m short on miracles,” I replied. “So a distraction will have to do. We’ll be there.” I put my radio back, and turned to my group.
“We’ll need a huge distraction,” I said. “Each of you take three of these remote mines. Place them throughout Cinnabar Island. We’re going to have to do nothing short of blowing up everything on this rock.” I sensed that Whitney disagreed, but she knew that it was for the greater good.
I went to place my mines, and came back within ten minutes. Everybody else was back.
“Get ready,” I told Jimmy. “When you hear something like a sonic boom, that’s the signal to get the h*** out of there.”
“Okay,” he replied. I could hear shooting in the background.
“Okay,” I said, preparing myself. “One…two…THREE!” I pushed the button on the remote. A large explosion took place right before our eyes. Light flashed, bombs flared. Time seemed to slow down. Buildings crumbled, people fled, and I saw the Gym in the distance collapse. Soldiers were firing guns into thin air, thinking that some unknown army was attacking them. A hole was pierced into the side of the volcano, and lava slowly started to spill out. It wasn’t enough lava to do any damage, though. People were running, children screaming, mothers running for the children. I felt bad that it had to be this way. I truly did. But that was the way it had to be. After the explosions stopped, I sprinted for the Gym and started to dig the others out of the rubble.
“Jimmy,” I said through the rubble. “C’mon, man, let me know you hear me.” I heard some muffled noises in the distance. Quickly, I went over to the source of the noise. Lifting huge rocks off of the person beneath this section, I found Erika.
“Took you long enough,” Erika said. I pulled her out, and we started searching for the others.
“I found Darla and Karen,” Whitney shouted.
“Keep looking for Jimmy and Brock,” I shouted back. I kept on digging, and I found Jimmy.
“What the dumba** kind of distraction was that,” Jimmy asked, smiling that he had been found. I pulled him out of the hole just as Giovanni found Brock.
“Let’s get out of here,” I said. I called to the others and ran to our meeting place. Once we got there, Karen finally noticed me.
“You’re alive,” she gasped. “What is happening at the League?”
“How should I know,” I asked. “I haven’t been there for a long time. Everybody hold on to me.”
“Why,” Lorelei asked.
“Because we’re taking the express to the League Headquarters,” I explained. I pulled out the Psychic Shard. Everyone took a hold of me. “Teleport.” Light flashed before us, and we disappeared in the wake of destruction that we left on Cinnabar Island.
We reappeared in what looked like near the end of Victory Road. It was quite dark in there, so I sent out Flare.
“Go, Flare,” I whispered.
“Where are we,” Duplica asked.
“Most likely Victory Road,” I said. “We’ll need a plan.” All of a sudden, my cell phone started to ring. Quickly, I opened it and put it into my ear. It was a voice that I was so happy to hear.
“Bob,” Koga said. “What’s your position?”
“Near the end of Victory Road,” I replied.
“Good,” he said. “Did you get Karen and Morty from Cinnabar?”
“Yeah,” I answered.
“Excellent,” Koga responded. “We have Bugsy, Sabrina, and Janine. We are closing in on your position. We have an army of five hundred.” I knew that this wasn’t good, as the League had over five thousand, but I kept my mouth shut.
“Where are you now,” I asked.
“About midway through Victory Road,” Koga answered. He must have sensed the tension in my voice. “Bob, I know that we are outnumbered. Oh yes, just in case you would like to know. Lugia and Ho-oh are also close to your position. I would suggest that you stop them.”
“I already have,” I said. “I had to catch them in order to keep them safe until this whole thing is over. Same with the Legendary Dogs.” Koga was furious, because I could hear it in his voice, but didn’t say anything.
“Are you going to wait for us,” Koga questioned.
“No,” I said firmly. “I want this thing wrapped up as soon as possible.”
“Okay,” Koga said. “Goodbye.”
“Bye,” I replied. I tuned to my group. “We are going forward without them. They are also within Victory Road, but we can’t wait any longer. It’s now or never, people.” They nodded, and I walked to the exit of the cave. I returned Flare silently, and walked out of the exit. It was getting light out, but still too early for the guards to be out.
“This is it,” Lorelei said. “This is what I call ‘endgame.’” I started walking towards the door to just stroll right in, but a beam of some sort of energy nailed me like nothing before. I looked up to where the attack had come from, and saw the Normal Warrior of the Unown standing there, along with the other seventeen Warriors…
- End of Chapter Eleven -
The Dragon Master IV: Chapter Twelve

“What are those,” Darla cried.
“The Elemental Warriors of the Unown,” I said. “They want the shards.” Immediately, each warrior jumped off the cliff that they were standing on.
“Brock, Darla,” I ordered. “Go and get our Masteries. They should be in the secret safe behind the PC. Go up to it, and open the file titled ‘Project Lancaster.’ It will ask for a password. Type in ‘Lincoln.’ It should open. Go.” They ran off, just in time for me to dodge a punch from the Fighting Warrior. The Psychic Warrior came net at me, and I pulled out my handgun and emptied a clip at it. The Psychic Warrior didn’t even flinch, and used Recover to heal itself. I pulled out the Dark Shard to hit it again, but the Dark Warrior came out of my shadow and stole the shard. The shard levitated above its hand, and glowed silver. It transformed into a silver ring with a black stone in the middle. The Dark Warrior slipped the ring on.
“What…just…happened,” Erika asked.
“It turned the Dark Shard into a ring so the Dark Warrior could be the guardian of the Dark Shard,” I replied. I tossed two shards to every person, and kept one for myself. I kept the Ice Shard for myself.
The Ice Warrior came towards me, rearing its ugly head and used an Ice Drill on me. It nearly missed me, and I retaliated with an Ice Punch in the face.
Meanwhile, Jimmy was busy fighting off the Rock Warrior and the Bug Warrior at the same time.
“ROCK BOMB,” he cried, aiming at the Rock Warrior. The Rock Warrior, however, used an Ancientpower, knocking Jimmy to his feet and the Rock Shard out of his hands. The Rock Warrior caught it, transformed it into its ring state, and jumped back to where the Dark Warrior was standing, observing all the action.
Two shards captured…sixteen shards left.
The Fighting Warrior was using Mach Punch on Giovanni over and over, but not hitting him. Giovanni was rushing back, avoiding the punches. The Ghost Warrior, however, was lingering behind him in its transparent manner. Once Giovanni was in front of the Ghost Warrior, the Ghost Warrior let a Shadow Ball rip, forcing Giovanni to fall unconscious and give up the Fighting Shard and the Ghost Shard. The two warriors converted the shards into rings, the Fighting Ring with a maroon jewel, and the Ghost Ring with a lavender gem, and placed them on their fingers. Like the other two warrior that were victorious, the Fighting Warrior and the Ghost Warrior stood back and observed the action.
Lorelei and the Change Warrior were morphing back and forth into different forms. First Lorelei was a Dragonite, and the Change Warrior was a Lapras. Then Lorelei was a Lanturn, then the Change Warrior morphed into a Jumpluff. Next, Lorelei changed into a Magmar, while the Change Warrior turned into a Golem. Finally, Lorelei changed into a Machamp, and the Psychic Warrior blasted her from behind with Psychic. She held onto the Psychic Shard, but the Change Shard flew out of her hand.
The Water Warrior and the Dragon Warrior were ganging up on Duplica. As there was no water because we were on land, the two warriors were improvising. The Dragon Warrior used a Twister, and the Water Warrior Water Gunned the twister to create a Water Spout. Duplica was running away to avoid the Water Spout, but it caught up to her and took the Water Shard away from her. The Water Warrior changed the shard into a silver ring with a blue sapphire as the gem, and stood over by the other finished Warriors to watch.
Six shards captured…twelve shards left.
Both Erika and the Flying Warrior had taken to the skies, and were dueling it out. She was frying him with Thunderbolt. Unbeknownst to her, the Thunder Warrior was biding its time, and waiting for the perfect moment to attack her. Right when the Flying Warrior was defeated, the Thunder Warrior struck down Erika with Thunder. The Thunder Warrior got what it wanted when the Thunder Shard fell down into its hand. Then, the Thunder Warrior altered the Thunder Shard into the Thunder Ring, which it then placed on its finger.
The Poison Warrior was after Whitney, swinging at her with a poison blade. She pulled out the Ground Shard that I had given her.
“DIG,” she cried. Digging into the ground, she confused the Poison Warrior. She was digging very fast, unaware that the Ground Warrior was also underground. The Ground Warrior came out of nowhere, slamming into Whitney with a force so great that she came up from the ground. The Poison Shard landed in front of the Poison Warrior, and the Ground Shard was clenched in the fist of the Ground Warrior. They each made a ring from the shards. The Ground Ring had a brown precious stone in it, while the Poison Ring had a fuchsia gemstone in the silver band. The two newly finished warriors went and stood over by the rest of the completed warriors.
Eight shards captured…ten shards left.
The Fire Warrior was coming at Morty using Blaze Kick. Over and over again the Fire Warrior kicked with its fiery feet. Morty was using Reflect with the help of the Normal Shard. Morty was setting up his attack.
“MEGA KICK,” Morty shouted. Morty jumped up in the air and came down upon the Fire Warrior. The Normal Warrior, however, was also setting up its attack. The Normal Warrior got a running tackle in on Morty, sending him to the ground, and both the Fire Shard and the Normal Shard flying out of his hand. A ruby was encased within the Fire Ring, and a clear diamond inside of the Normal Ring.
Ten shards captured…eight shards left.
The Steel Warrior was coming at Karen full throttle. Using Metal Claw, it swiped at Karen repeatedly. She had to do something, and all she had besides the Steel Shard was the Grass Shard. She pulled out the Grass Shard.
“SOLARBEAM,” Karen cried. The Grass Shard sucked in energy for a moment, and then fired the most powerful grass attack at the Steel Warrior. It didn’t look like it did much damage, but it did stun it.
The Grass Warrior came out from behind Karen with a Vine Whip to restrain her. She couldn’t move a muscle, and another vine took the Grass Shard away from her, changing it into an Elemental Ring. The Grass Ring had a silver band with an emerald in the center.
Twelve shards captured…six shards left.
The Dragon Warrior was coming to Duplica, in its last attempt to take the Dragon Shard away from her. The Dragon Warrior fired a Dragonbreath at her. She held out the Dragon Shard.
“ELEMENTAL IMBALANCE,” she cried. She did not know what this attack did, because she had only heard me use it. The Dragon Shard repelled the Dragonbreath attack, and it was raging towards the Dragon Warrior, four times the power. However, the Dragon Warrior used Elemental Imbalance, sending the Dragonbreath back to Duplica sixteen times the original power. The attack blasted Duplica back, crashing into the wall, while the Dragon Warrior created the Dragon Ring. The Dragon Ring had a teal stone in the middle, an aquamarine.
Lorelei and the Psychic Warrior were fighting it out with Psychic attacks. First, Lorelei would send a Psychic. The Psychic Warrior would use a Mirror Coat to send it back. Lorelei dodged it, knowing that she had to defeat the Psychic Warrior. The Psychic Warrior read her mind, and acted quickly. Using Psychic Pulse, the Psychic Warrior disabled Lorelei, making her utterly helpless. Using its Psychic abilities, it took the shard away from Lorelei, and tossed her against the wall. The Psychic Warrior shifted the Psychic Shard into the Psychic Ring, which had a purple gemstone, and placed the ring on its finger before standing by the rest of the Elemental Warriors of the Unown that had completed their mission.
Fourteen shards captured…four shards left.
Both Erika and the Flying Warrior were on wings, chasing each other through the air. Every so often, the Flying Warrior would speed up, and use Wing Attack on her. She was getting tired, and was having trouble staying in the air. The Flying Warrior took an upward angle on Erika, and then plummeted down with Fly. Smashing Erika to the ground, the Flying Shard flew from her hand, and into the outstretched arm of the Flying Warrior. The Flying Warrior created the Flying Ring, which had a sky blue jewel in the middle.
The Bug Warrior was slashing away at Jimmy with Fury Cutter. Jimmy was trying to fight back, but was inexperienced in the field of Bug attacks. He was just dodging the Bug Warrior to try to escape. However, that didn’t work, as the Bug Warrior fired a Spider Web from its palm, pinning Jimmy to the wall so the shard could be taken with ease. The Bug Ring was made and was slipped on the finger of the Bug Warrior. The gemstone in the center of the ring was a light green one.
Sixteen shards captured…two shards left.
The Steel Warrior made its way towards Karen, wanting to retrieve the Steel Shard. It wielded a sharp steel sword, and Karen couldn’t do anything but try and dodge it. She used Metal Claw, and started to fight back. However, the Steel Warrior used the butt of its sword to stun her and get the Steel Shard away. The Steel Shard was made into the Steel Ring, which had a jewel that was dark gray.
Seventeen shards captured…one shard left.
The Ice Warrior kept on hurtling towards me; throwing ice attacks every chance it got. I kept on shooting at it with my guns, because I knew that the Ice Shard wouldn’t damage it very much. The bullets slowed it down, but didn’t kill it.
“WHY WON’T YOU DIE,” I shouted at it, still unloading clips at it. The gun clicked, which meant that it was out of bullets. If I tried to reload, the Ice Warrior would get me for sure. I holstered my guns, just as the Ice Warrior sent an Ice Beam at me. It hit me full in the stomach, throwing me back and pinning me to the wall. The Ice Shard was lying right in front of the Ice Warrior. It picked up the Ice Shard, and morphed the Ice Shard into the Ice Ring. The Ice Ring had a smoky quartz inside of it.
Eighteen shards captured…no shards left. We had lost all of the shards. The Elemental Warriors of the Unown were about to take off, but the rocks beneath them started to shake. They all tripped, falling to the ground. After the durst cleared, I saw two people standing on the cliff behind them.
“BROCK, DARLA,” I shouted. Brock had his brown Master’s cloak on, and Darla had her red Master’s cloak on.
“You have no idea how long I’ve waited to do that,” Brock smiled. He came down with a bag in his hand. Just as he came down, someone came out of Victory Road. It was Koga, Aya, and Bruno. They all ran towards us. A large group of men followed the three newly appointed generals out of the cave. Bringing up the rear was Bugsy, Jasmine, and Sabrina. I dumped the bag out, and many balls of energy rolled out. I searched for the teal one, and I grabbed it as soon as I found it. I felt the power of the Dragon Mastery course once again through my veins. I immediately got rid of the League uniform I had on, and generated a teal ninja suit, along with a teal Master’s cloak, and my teal katana with a silver hilt. Everyone grabbed his or her Mastery, and called their normal clothes. Finally, the Elemental Warriors of the Unown came to fight once again.
“They have the Elemental Rings,” I cried. “Everyone, get your Elemental Ring!” I ran straight for the Dragon Warrior. It called a sword of its own, and we fought it out. I swung with my katana, and it blocked with its own. Back and forth we fought, until it made one fatal mistake…it ran away. It sprinted away, hoping that just having the ring would be enough. However, I called my wings and zoomed after it.
I tackled it, forcing it to fly into the wall. Before the Dragon Warrior could react, I drove my katana through the spot on its belt where the Dragon Shard was supposed to go. The Dragon Warrior cried out in pain, and then turned into teal energy. The teal energy flew off back to where it came from, the Chambers of the Unown. The Dragon Ring was left lying on the ground. I picked up the ring, and stuck it on my right ring finger. Immediately, the jewel in the ring glowed teal, and the ring made me the official guardian of the Dragon Element.
I did some quick calculating in my head. There were elements that didn’t have a Master here: Thunder, Flying, and Water. I spotted those three warriors standing over by the wall, just observing all the action going on. Calling my wings, I ran over to the warriors not doing anything. I caught the Water Warrior with a drop kick, forcing it to fall forward.
“Puff, fight the Thunder Warrior,” I called. “Flare, fight the Flying Warrior!” Throwing out two teal pokeballs, my pokemon obeyed me. Flare started to roast the Flying Warrior, and Puff began to beat up the Thunder Warrior.
I was fighting the Water Warrior, as the Water Master, Misty, was my fiancé. Pulling out my katana, I started to swipe at the Water Warrior. The Water Warrior fired Water Surges, Water Guns, Surfs, and Waterfalls at me. I flew up in the air, and the Water Warrior used Rain Dance.
“You’ve dug you own grave,” I smiled. “THUNDER!” Lightening fell from the sky, striking the Water Warrior so hard that it was immediately turned into blue energy and the energy flew off to where the teal energy went…the Chambers of the Unown. The Water Warrior was hit so hard, that the Water Ring flew up into the sky, and fell right into my palm.
I turned around, and was greeted by energy of many colors zooming towards the Chambers of the Unown. I flew back to the ground, and saw the fourteen other Masters, along with Puff and Flare, each holding an Elemental Ring.
“Puff, Flare, good job,” I said. Puff handed me the Thunder Ring, and Flare handed me the Flying Ring. I put them into a pouch along with the Water Ring.
“What do we do with these now,” Duplica asked.
“Put them on your right ring finger,” I said. “Puff, Flare, return.” Puff and Flare came back to their teal pokeballs. The Masters put on the rings, and fifteen of the eighteen elements had guardians.
“You must go now,” Koga ordered. “Take Giovanni and Lorelei with you. You three are closer than you think. Quickly!”
“Right,” I said. I grabbed Giovanni and Lorelei, pulling them up the cliff where we could sneak into the League. Just as we reached the top of the cliff, the entire League army of five thousand came out of the front of the headquarters. The small Rebel army composed of five hundred was ready. I wanted to stay and help, but they didn’t need it. Not only did they have twelve Pokemon Masters on their side, but also each soldier threw out nine pokeballs, and each pokeball contained a Ditto. Simultaneously, every Ditto turned into the soldier that released them, multiplying the Rebel army’s number by ten. The Rebels now had five thousand fighting for their just cause. While I was standing in awe, Lorelei grabbed me.
“Come on, Bob,” Lorelei persisted.
“Do you want to save your fiancé or not,” Giovanni asked, with a hint of a smile on his face. The three of us ran to the headquarters, ready to start my ultimate test…
- End of Chapter Twelve -

The Dragon Master IV: Chapter Thirteen

Lorelei, Giovanni and I crouched beside a window. I looked inside, and saw that it was the room that belonged to the first of the Elite Four…Will. He was sitting all warm and cozy by a fire, reading a book. I generated my katana, and carefully cut open a window. My katana was so sharp, it was a silent cutter. I slipped in, and Lorelei and Giovanni followed. I snuck up behind Will, grabbed him so that he couldn’t get away, and placed my katana to his throat for some extra incentive. He must have read my mind, because he knew it was me.
“Bob,” Will said. “Giovanni, Lorelei. I could say that it’s good to see you, but you would most likely kill me. What do you want?”
“Where is Misty,” I demanded.
“I seriously don’t know, Bob,” Will said. “I would tell you if I knew, because this guy in that black cloak-”
“You mean trench coat,” I corrected him.
“He only wears that when he goes to meet you,” Will said.
“Go on,” I ordered.
“This guy in the black cloak,” Will said, panicking. “He doesn’t trust anybody anymore. Nobody that stayed with him. I’m actually locked in this room right now.”
“Why don’t you just Teleport out,” I wanted to know.
“He sealed it with a Dark Shield,” Will said.
“Back to my original question,” I said. “Where’s Misty?”
“He never told anyone else,” Will said.
“Who is ‘he,’” I demanded.
“I don’t know that, either,” Will said sadly.
“Why don’t you just read his mind,” I demanded.
“He’s a Dark Master,” Will protested. “I can’t get in his head. He’s not just dark…he’s evil.”
“No s***,” I said. “So you’re telling me that you don’t know where Misty is?”
“Right,” Will replied. I thought about it, and then let go of him.
“Why did you stick with him,” I asked Will.
“The League is everything to me,” Will said. “I had nowhere else to go…”
“Neither did I,” I said. “And yet I still managed to do the right thing.”
“Believe me, Bob,” Will pleaded. “If I knew that it was going to turn into this, then I wouldn’t have stayed.” He looked down at the floor, as if ashamed.
“Whatever,” I said. “Is there any way out of here?”
“Yeah,” Will said. He pulled a book out of the bookcase and pressed a button. A panel opened by the doorway.
“Through there,” I asked Will.
“Yeah,” Will said.
“How come you never used this to get out of here,” I asked, suspicious again.
“There’s a Dark Shield blocking it out,” Will said. “As a Psychic Master, I can’t pass it. Good luck.” I nodded, and walked through the passageway. Just as Will had said, there was a Dark Shield there. I walked through it, and Lorelei and Giovanni followed me. at the end of the passage there was a door. I pushed open the door, and walked out. When Lorelei and Giovanni walked out, I closed it, and found out that the door was a painting.
“Let’s go,” I said, walking towards my old chambers. “Giovanni, Mom, go and help the others outside.”
“We’re staying,” Giovanni said.
“I want to do this alone,” I said. “I owe to Misty for not being here…” Lorelei pulled Giovanni’s arm, and he didn’t fight.
“Good luck,” Giovanni said. Those were the first kind words he had ever said to me my entire life. I ran away to my old chambers. I opened the door, and saw someone in a black cloak staring into the fire. He had his hood down. He turned around, and I was shocked.
“Hello, Bob,” he said. I stared in disbelief.
“Ash,” I said, not trusting my eyes. I had always known that he hated me for taking Misty from him, but I didn’t know that he would do something this drastic to get her.
“Surprised to see me, Bob,” Ash asked. “I bet that you thought that I stayed loyal to you when this all started. I bet that you thought that I was locked in a cell, like the other Masters.”
“You can’t be behind this,” I said in awe.
“I’m not,” Ash said. “This wasn’t my idea. It was Lance’s idea.”
“What,” I asked, not knowing what he was talking about.
“That’s right,” Ash said. But it wasn’t his voice. It was Lance’s voice.
“You,” I yelled. “How did you do this?”
“A little help from our friend Will,” Lance explained through Ash’s body. “You see, I am merely a guest in Ash’s body. I have been ever since you proposed to Misty. After Ash slipped out of the room when you announced your engagement to Misty, he took Will aside and asked him to do this for him. Of course, Ash never told Will that he was letting me possess Ash’s body. If he had, Will would’ve never done it.
“Will cast the spell, and I am now living a half-life unseen by the human eye. The only way that someone could hear what I have to say was to live inside someone else. But, in order for that to happen, Ash had to do this willingly. And he did.”
“You b******,” I swore, calling my katana to me. Lance called Ash’s katana to his hands. I swung at him over and over again, hoping that I could kill him once and for all.
I swung at him again, but he flipped over me and stood at the door. I looked around the room. I spotted Lance, and he ran. I followed him. He was heading down to the dungeons. I had an instant feeling of déjà vu. It was the dream that I had in the farmer’s basement a while ago. I had to stop it from coming true.
Lance ran down to the dungeons, and I lost him. I looked in the cells, and nobody was in them. I heard a metal door slam at the end of the hall. In my dream, that was Misty’s cell. I ran as fast as possible to her cell, and swung open the door. I caught Lance just in time. He was about to suck the life right out of Misty with Ash’s Dark Mastery. I tackled him, and he fell against the wall. I started to wail away at him with my fists, cursing at him, and just beating the living daylights out of him. Black energy shot out of his feet at huge velocity, and he flew through the wall. I turned to Misty.
“Misty,” I whispered to her. Her eyes lightly opened, and she smiled.
“Bob,” she said. I pulled out the Water Ring, and placed it on her right ring finger. The jewel in the center glowed blue, and so did she.
“I’ll be right back,” I said, kissing her lightly on the lips. I turned to glare at the hole Lance had left. I ran through it, and saw Lance up over the battling armies. I pulled off my cloak, and called my wings and my katana. I followed him up into the sky.
“Finally caught up to me, eh,” Lance said through Ash’s body.
“You will pay,” I said.
“For what,” Lance asked.
“You will pay for Delilah,” I started. “You will pay for the spirit of every person that you broke trying to control the League. You will pay what I had to go through avenging Delilah’s death. You will pay for all the people that trusted you, and were let down. But most of all, you will pay for Misty.”
“Let’s go,” Lance said. The two of us rushed through the air at each other, katanas raised. They clashed so hard sparks flew off. Again and again we struck swords, each time getting more sparks produced. I kicked him in the stomach, forcing him to fly back through the air a bit. I took this chance to attack.
“HYPER BLAST,” I shouted. A small beam of energy went sailing at Lance. Right before it connected, the beam exploded into a huge blast. The attack knocked Lance back even farther.
“SHADOW BLAST,” Lance yelled, taking advantage of Ash’s Mastery. A beam identical to mine, save it was black, came careening towards me. I didn’t have time to react, and the attack hit me full on. I nearly fell out of the sky, but stayed in flight.
“RAIN DANCE,” I called. Clouds rolled in, and rain started to fall. “ELEMENTAL STORM!” Fire, Ice, and Thunder shot down from the sky, hitting Lance forcefully. Lance was severely damaged, and I made sure of it by following up by slicing my katana across his chest. It wasn’t a deep cut, but he was bleeding.
“We’re going to finish this now,” Lance said.
“With pleasure,” I replied.
“Let me rephrase that,” Lance said. “I’m going to finish this now.” He charged at me with Ash’s katana. I blocked, and retreated about three yards.
“Lance, why do you persist,” I asked.
“Because my life wasn’t worth living unless I kill you,” Lance shouted at me. I shook my head.
“Then I guess that your life wasn’t worth living,” I said. “It was just one big, gigantic mistake.” He shouted in fury at me.
“YOU WILL DIE NOW,” Lance emphasized.
“Then I’m taking you down with me,” I shouted. In the pouring rain, the two of us charged like madmen at each other. We each had a different reason. Mine was to make him pay for everything he’s ever done. His was that I had previously defeated him three times.
I charged my katana with dragon energy, and Lance charged his with dark energy. As the swords collided, a large sonic boom went out throughout the land. The both of us fell to the ground. Lance looked at me, but his figure started to change. Ash’s body transformed into Lance’s.
“Thank you, Bob,” Lance said. “Your energy allowed me to use my own body.” I was in shock.
“OUTRAGE,” I cried. My fists went up in teal flames. I went over to Lance and started to punch the living s*** out of him. Each time I hit him, the flames on my fists went higher. After the flames could go no higher, I jumped up and spin kicked him in the stomach. He fell against a rock.
I slowly walked up to him. He opened his eyes, and looked back at me. We stared at each other for a while.
“Lance,” I said. “I’m going to kill you now. Do us all a favor, and don’t come back.” I rammed my katana through his stomach, giving him the fate that was meant for me, as foretold by the Psychic Shard. Lance died, and his body changed back into Ash’s. Ash looked up at me.
“I’ll see you in h***,” Ash said.
“I know,” I said. Ash’s head fell, and he died. The two armies behind me had stopped fighting long ago to watch the battle. Everyone on the clearing gathered around the dead body of Ash, and me. I was still staring at Ash’s body, when his eyes shot open and glowed teal. What seemed to be a blast of wind was expelled from Ash’s body, and it flew into the air and far away. But before it did, the blast of wind said something to me.
“It’s not over,” Lance’s spirit said as it whizzed by my ear.
“Unfortunately,” I said, degenerating my katana and calling my cloak. Ash’s eyes closed once more, and another battle in the war between Lance and I was over.
Everyone was looking upon me and the body of Ash. Not a word was spoken. I could hear the rustling of the leaves on the ground; it was so quiet. Then, out of nowhere, a clapping broke out. After about three seconds, it had erupted into a applauding of shouting, and people knowing that the reign of the Man in the Black Cloak, otherwise known as the Man in the Black Trench Coat, was over. Out of all of the applause, I heard someone faintly running toward me and calling my name.
“Bob,” Misty shouted, running towards me. I made my way through the crowd, breaking into a full out run.
“Misty,” I called, getting ever closer to her. When we met, we embraced, and I looked in her eyes.
“Oh, Bob,” she said.
“I’m sorry I didn’t come sooner,” I apologized. “Is there anything I could ever do to make up for this?”
“You could just shut up and kiss me already,” Misty said with a smile on her face. I didn’t resist, and just fell into her, and she fell into my arms. Someone tapped me on the shoulder, and it was Bruno. He pointed to the steps of the Palace of the Elite Four. Five figures were walking down the steps. One was dressed in a maroon cloak, another one was dressed in a ice blue cloak, the third was dressed in a yellow cloak, the fourth one in a light gray cloak, and the last one in a cloak that was deep purple. They were Chuck, Pryce, Lt. Surge, Falkner, and Will…the Masters that had stayed with Ash…the ones who had turned against me…
- End of Chapter Thirteen -

The Dragon Master IV: Chapter Fourteen

The five Masters that had just walked out of the Palace of the Elite Four came up to me. They removed their hoods, and I looked at Falkner, one who had stayed loyal to me from the beginning.
“Why did you stay,” I asked him. The other ones had stayed with Lance when I first tried to take him on. Falkner, however, left, and went with me.
“It’s not what you think,” Falkner said.
“Then what is it,” I retaliated.
“He’s right,” Jimmy said, stepping forward to defend Falkner. “Remember when I said that we had a double-agent inside the League? Falkner was that double agent. He’s been behind you from the beginning.” I was relieved. I pulled out the Flying Ring, I handed it to Falkner. I also pulled out the Thunder Ring, and handed it to Lt. Surge. Pryce, Chuck, and Will looked offended.
“Don’t the three of us get an Elemental Ring,” Chuck asked, totally offended.
“Actually,” I said. “No. Lorelei is the guardian of the Ice Ring, Bruno is the guardian of the Fighting Ring, and Sabrina is the guardian of the Psychic Ring”
“But I’m in the Elite Four,” Will protested. “Sabrina is just a Gym Leader! Since I have a higher ranking, I should be the guardian!”
“Sabrina has shown great loyalty to me over the past years,” I said. “I would even offer you First of the Elite Four, but we all know that she would never leave Saffron City behind.”
“That is correct,” Sabrina said in her same solemn tone that she always used. I looked back at Will.
“You see,” I asked. “Will, you’re a good guy, and you really helped me today. But I’m sorry, Sabrina is the guardian of the Psychic Ring.” Will took a deep breath.
“It’s okay,” he said, calming down. “It’s not that big of a deal. I’m just glad this is all over and-”
“It’s not over,” I said. “Lance will find a way to come back…somehow. He’s had all these plans just in case one of his failed. Why can’t he have one more?” Will nodded.
“I assume that you will make your statement to both Kanto and Johto soon,” Koga said. “You know, that Ash was behind it all.”
“Lance was behind it all,” I corrected Koga. “Ash was just a pawn in Lance and my game of chess. But yes, I will make my statement now.” I walked inside of the Palace of the Elite Four, and went to the room where the Pokemon League Champion made all his announcements.
I sat down on my chair, and turned on the transmitter. I cleared my throat, and prepared what I was going to say to the nations.
“Hello,” I said. “It is me, Bob Shepardson. I never died, it was just a lie. The Man in the Black Cloak, or the Black Trench Coat, was no one other than Lance…in a Dark Master’s body.
“It is, therefore, my great sadness that the Dark Master was no other than Ash Ketchum, a good friend of mine, and an ally of mine since I became the Pokemon League Champion three years ago. I send out my regrets to all who knew him and cherished him. Ash Ketchum.
“As of this moment, the house arrest has been lifted, and you people shall now go about your daily lived as you did before. This has been a very bad ending to a very terrible strain of events. I wish you all peace.” I turned the transmitter off. I had to go down to Pallet Town as soon as possible. Sabrina looked at me pointedly. I nodded.
“Teleport,” Sabrina whispered. Her and I went off to Pallet Town. We landed right in front of Delia Ketchum’s home. Delia was Ash’s mother. I went up to the door, and knocked. A tearful Delia came to the door. I looked into her face, but it was hard.
“I’m sorry,” I said in a solemn tone. She fell forward, and I caught her in my arms. She was sobbing uncontrollably in my arms at the loss of her only son, and her only child.
After I had spent some time with Delia, and explained to her what had happened, I departed to Indigo Plateau. There, I went to my room, and went to Misty. She was sitting in a chair by the fire, and looking at a picture of Ash. I went over to her and put my hand on her shoulder.
“He was my best friend for all of those years,” Misty asked, tears silently falling down her cheeks. “How could he?”
“He was driven by the thought of you,” I explained. “He wanted me out of the way…by any means necessary…”
“Bob,” Misty said, putting the picture of Ash away and standing up to face me. “Let’s put off the wedding for a while. You know?”
“I know,” I said. “And I will wait. I waited for that long while I was away, so I suppose that I could wait a bit longer.”
“Good,” Misty said. “I just want to wait while because…because it wouldn’t feel right to get married so soon after one of our friends died.”
“I agree totally,” I said. “By the way, the funeral for Ash is tomorrow.” She nodded, and I left the room. I knew how much Ash meant to her. He meant a lot to me, too. He was a very good friend of mine.
Before I could think about what I was going to do about this, I had five little things to take care of. I took off to Ecruteak City. I landed by the Burned Tower. Walking down the stairs to where I had fallen two years ago, I went up to the platform where I had found and released the three Legendary Dogs. Pulling out the three pokeballs that contained them, I set them free on the raised area that I had found them on in the first place. They all looked at me for a second, and then I crushed their pokeballs, setting them free. In an instant, they were turned back into stone, from whence they came.
“It’s been fun,” I saluted them as I flew out of the tower, and up to the top of the Tin Tower. I picked out the pokeball that contained Ho-oh. Walking down the staircase to Ho-oh’s chamber, I released it. As long as the Legendary Dogs were in place, Ho-oh was confounded to this place. I crushed Ho-oh’s pokeball in my palm.
“See you later, Ho-oh,” I said as I walked up to the roof and flew off to the Whirl Islands. I hovered above the cave where I had found Lugia. I threw the pokeball out into the air, and Lugia was released. Lugia dived down into the depths of the water where it belonged. The pokeball returned to my hand, and I crushed it.
“Bye,” I said quietly as I flew off towards Indigo Plateau for the night.
I didn’t sleep well that night, for the thought loomed over me that I was the one killed Ash. The next morning I woke up not tired at all, even though I had not gotten a wink of sleep the night before. I called a teal ninja suit, and my teal cloak. The funeral wasn’t too long away now. I was giving the eulogy, and I had no idea what to say. I decided to just go out there and talk about the Ash that I once knew.
The funeral went on as planned, but people looked confused. They did not know whether to be happy, because an evil ruler was killed, or to be sad, because Ash was a friend with everyone, and he died. I went up to the pulpit to speak. Clearing my throat, I looked out to all who had come. I opened my mouth, but the words wouldn’t come out. I wanted to say every swear word in the book about Ash because he separated me from Misty from so long. But another side of me wanted to say how good of a friend Ash was to me over the past years. Both sides were conflicting each, and I didn’t know which one would come out.
“I’ve known Ash for about three years,” I started. “Over that period of time, he’s helped me with many things. As many of you know, he helped me defeat the League back when Lance ruled it in corruption. After we won, Ash stayed loyal to me, even though he would rather have himself be Pokemon League Champion. But who can blame him? Let the one who has never wished to have this job cast the first stone.
“Ash has been amazingly well putting up with me over these past few years. When we first met, he was extremely cordial to me. After we spent some time together, he became one of my best friends. I wish he were still alive today. Thank you.” I stepped down from the pulpit, and sat down next to Misty. She gripped my arm and smiled at me. I smiled back.
When the funeral was over, there was a meal back in the hall, but the others Masters and I waited in the Master’s Cemetery to watch Ash be lowered. As I watched him being lowered, I remembered all the good times that I had had with him. I wanted to leave him remembering of the good, not the evil. After the body had been lowered, two men with shovels put the dirt back on top of him. I started to walk away, but caught sight of Bruno. He was crying. I went over to him and put my hand on his shoulder.
“What’s the matter,” I asked him.
“I’ve been thinking about my wife,” Bruno said, pulling a picture out of his cloak. He handed me the picture. It was a picture of a beautiful woman, and Bruno behind her, his strong arms wrapped around her.
“She’s beautiful,” I said.
“Tell me about it,” Bruno said. “It was about six years ago. I went out on a mission for Lance. Molly and I had only been married for three years. Anyway, I kissed her goodbye, and while I was gone, someone attacked the League. I came back as soon as possible. The Palace of the Elite Four was nearly destroyed, and Molly was killed in the attack. Someone had shot her, or so Lance had said. He claimed that he tried to save her, but these were his early years, so he might’ve been telling the truth. Molly was the only one left inside of the building. She didn’t have a chance…” I gave the picture back to Bruno, and he must’ve realized where he was, for he stopped crying that instant. He wiped the tears from his face, and went inside the hall to eat. I felt so sorry. I didn’t know that how Bruno’s wife died until that day. I hoped that I would never lose Misty.
“Bob,” Misty said, coming up to me. “This just came in the mail for you. The mailman said that this letter was to be rushed to you if you became champion again. There’s no return address.” I opened the letter. It read:

Bob,
So you’ve beaten me. Congratulations. Honestly, if it came down to it, I’m not sure I could’ve killed you. It would’ve made Misty cry. You know that I wouldn’t want to see that…ever. I hope you two have a very happy life together. But I have some things to ask of you.
Take care of Misty. Cherish her forever. You know she means the world to me, and I know that she means to world to you. We’re just two fools in love. Marry her soon, and treat her like a queen. You know I would.
Watch over Mom. She didn’t deserve to see this. I never wanted her to see this. Tell her that I’m sorry for what I did to her.
There is a couple more things that I want to touch on before I let you live on with your life.
First and most importantly of all, it was just as much my fault as it was Lance’s. I let him in, but he took it too far. I was never going to kidnap Misty, but once Lance did it, it could not be undone. It should have never gone this far.
Second thing, maybe just as important as the first, is that I would like to say I’m sorry. I’m sorry what I did to you. I’m sorry what I forced all of Kanto and Johto to go through. I’m sorry for what I did to all the Masters who were involved with this.
Last thing, I swear. Good luck, Bob. I hope that you are never beaten, so the best Pokemon League Champion will stay. I hope, somehow, we meet again. Until then,

Ash Ketchum, The Dark Master
I looked at the letter, and then folded it, placing it in my cloak. Misty looked at me.
“Who was it from,” she asked curiously.
“An old friend,” I smiled. She giggled, and how I missed that laugh. I drew her into a kiss, and then we broke apart.
“Any ideas,” she asked.
“For what,” I replied, and it was my turn to be curious.
“For a wedding date,” she said.
“I don’t know,” I said, shrugging my shoulders. “Why don’t we wait awhile?”
“That’s just what I was thinking,” Misty said, and I pulled her into another kiss. I looked deep into her eyes.
“I love you,” I said quietly.
“I love you, too,” Misty said, leaning into me. “Bob, how happy do you think we’ll be when we get married?”
“It’ll be paradise,” I said. “Paradise with many hardships…Misty, no matter what, I will always love you.”
“I will always love you,” she said. It had been a cloudy day so far, but the sun had come out because I told it to. The two of us just sat there, basking in the warmth of it, soaking it up, for we had not felt warmth and happiness for a long while. Also, it made me feel better about that letter I got from Ash. I would do as he said, and cherish Misty forever. No matter what…
- End of Chapter Fourteen -
- End of The Dragon Master IV -