Chapter One: Saying Goodbye
Ben woke up. It was his 14th birthday. This meant that he could finally start his Pokémon journey. His dad had caught him a Scraggy some time ago, but he had kept it until today. His mum had also got him something, a Magikarp. She had found it flopping outside while Ben was at school and his dad was at work, so she kept it inside until Ben’s dad got home so that he could catch it. Ben wasn’t particularly thrilled by the Magikarp, but he decided to take it with him anyway, as it would evolve into a Gyrados.
He went downstairs. In the living room, his family were waiting for him. They were all happy, and so was he. The living room was like most of the rooms in his house. The walls and floor were made of wood, with a rug on the floor. In the middle of the room, there was a couch opposite the TV, and in front of the couch was a small coffee table. On the table, there were two Pokeballs. He knew that they were for him.
“Happy birthday son,” his dad said, putting a hand on his shoulder, “Now you can travel the world with your new Pokémon.”
Ben and his dad walked over to the table, and Ben picked up the Pokeballs that contained his first two Pokémon.
“Now,” he dad spoke again, “There’s something I want you to do. Go to Professor Juniper. She has a mission for you, a mission that will take you all around Unova.”
Ben walked outside. Nuvema Town still looked the same as always. Same tree surrounding, same wood houses, same dirt paths, even same Pokémon lab that didn’t go with the surroundings. Except one thing. Some of the Pokémon that people were playing with were different to how they used to be. This was due to the fact that recently the Pokétransfer Lab had failed to contain some of the Pokémon they had brought over from other regions. These Pokémon had spread and bred, bringing them into the ecosystem. Of course Ben was taught all this in school; he was top of his class. He headed over to where Prof. Juniper’s lab was.
Getting inside, Ben was overwhelmed by the amount of machinery. It was all shiny and looked extremely complicated. Compared to these things, Ben’s computer looked like a rock with square drawn on it. His PC only did three things; send emails, spout random information, and play Minecraft. The ability to play Minecraft was the best of these features. Prof. Juniper noticed him, and came running over.
“Ben! So glad you could come,” she said. “Now, you’re probably wondering why I called you over here.”
“My dad said you were going to give me some sort of mission,” Ben replied.
“That is correct. This here is a Pokedex.” While saying this, she held up the Pokedex. It was small, red and looked somewhat like a mobile phone. “What I want you to do is travel around Unova, capturing and battling Pokémon in order to store their information in this Pokedex. I have already stored the information from your Scraggy and Magikarp. Will you do this for me? I’m asking you because you’re the brightest pupil in your class.”
“Of course I’ll do it! It’s always been my dream to travel around Unova accompanied by Pokémon!”
“Very well then. Then I also have something else for you.”
Prof. Juniper gave Ben the Pokedex, as well as some extra Pokeballs.
“You will need these to catch more Pokémon, but of course you already knew that didn’t you. Now, off you go!”
Ben wandered out into Route 1. He wondered what Pokémon he should catch first. He knew that if someone wanted to battle him, he would need a well-balanced party in order to defeat them. However, it was early, so most of the Pokémon were still asleep. Ben realised he hadn’t had breakfast yet. He sat down and opened his bag. He got out some sandwiches and poffins, as well as the Pokeballs containing his Pokémon.
He sent out his two Pokémon and gave them some poffins. Scraggy took his and ate it greedily, while Magikarp just picked it up in his mouth and flopped around uselessly. Ben found it hard to think that a completely useless Pokémon could evolve something completely awesome like Gyrarados. But despite his opinions, it was a fact. The type of two-parts-hydrogen-one part-oxygen fact that never changes. But for the moment, Ben didn’t care about this.
While eating, Ben had some time to look around. Route 1 was lush and green. There was tall grass in two stipes along the route, meaning that you couldn’t avoid it. Near the middle of the route on the left side, there was a stream leading away. You could only go along there if you had a Pokémon which knew Surf, as it got pretty deep quickly.
After finishing breakfast, Ben noticed that some Pokémon were waking up, but he decided to continue on anyway. No sense in waiting, after all, the Pokémon found here were probably also available in other places. The next town along was Accumula Town. Since there wasn’t really anything there, he headed straight on through Route 2 and on to the next city, which was Stration City, home of the trainer school and the Stration City Gym, the gym of three types. Surprisingly, he didn’t run into any Pokémon on the way there. Because of this, he made great time on the way, and it was still early morning by the time he got there.
Ben decided it might be a good idea to say goodbye to his friends at school before leaving. But as before, it was still early, so most children were still getting ready. However, there was one person he knew would be awake at this time. Her name was Fennel. She was a professor that worked on a dream machine thingy, called ‘Game Sync’ or something. Ben wasn’t exactly sure of how it worked, but it sounded cool.
Ben went into the apartment building and climbed to the second floor, where Fennel worked. Ben knocked on the door. He had become good friends with Fennel, and she would actually be up at this time so he could say goodbye to her. He heard something crash from behind the door, which means the sound must have been pretty loud as the door was reinforced steel. The owners of the building had made it like that so that the explosions wouldn’t bother any other people living in the building. Then there were frantic footsteps, and then a peephole thing opened, and Fennel’s eyes peered through. The peephole closed and then the door opened.
“Ben,” Fennel said, “What are you doing here? Even you don’t go to school this early.”
“Professor Juniper has sent me on a mission around Unova to fill her Pokedex,” Ben replied, “I’ve come to say goodbye.”
“Oh, wow. This is what you’ve always wanted, isn’t it?”
“Yeah. I got a Scraggy and a Magikarp from my parents.”
“A Magikarp? Well, whatever works. But yeah, goodbye, I guess.”
“Yeah, bye.” Ben was about to walk away when he remembered something. “Oh yeah, and what was that crash before.”
“You heard that? Well, it was just a minor setback.” And with that, Ben walked back down the stairs, with Fennel waving goodbye. When outside, Ben was pretty unsure of where to go. There was the Dreamyard, a place where young trainers practiced, but there were also Pokémon further in. Since he would have to battle his way through, Ben decided to go on to the next route instead.
At the edge of the city was a small garden, with lots of topiaries. There were also some ponds which water-dwelling Pokémon liked to hide in. Ben actually didn’t think of this, and was about to pass by when what looked like a lillypad jumped out at him. On close inspection, it was a Pokémon with a blue body, six stumpy legs, a big yellow nose (at least he thought it was a nose) and a lillypad on its back. It was a Lotad. Ben had always been fond of Lotads. He thought they were cute. He knew that catching it would unbalance his team towards the water side. Well, not yet, since Magikarp didn’t know any water moves, but it evolved into Gyrarados, making a watery team. But it was so cute! How could he not catch it?
“Go Scraggy!” he yelled, tossing Scraggy’s Pokeball in front of him. The lizard-like Pokémon came out, holding its ‘pants’ up near its neck. It was time to put his knowledge to good use. He needed to think of what moves Scraggy knew, and which would be effective against Lotad. Unfortunately, his brain needed some reminding sometimes. He got out a notebook contains a whole bunch of information on Pokémon, as well as a type effectiveness chart. While he flipped through to Scraggy, Lotad watched both of them cautiously.
Ben found out that Scraggy had no moves effective against Lotad, but the same went in reverse. Lotad got tired of waiting for its opponent to make a move, and used Bubblebeam at Scraggy. It was time for some quick thinking on Ben’s part.
“Scraggy, use Hi Jump Kick!” Scraggy jumped over the Bubblebeam and moved into a kicking position aimed at Lotad. This was a risky move. If the Lotad dodged it, then Scraggy would sustain some damage. As if reading Ben’s mind, the Lotad moved out of the way, causing Scraggy to crash into the ground. Not a good start. The Lotad charged at Scraggy, ready to use Astonish. Ben yelled, “Scraggy, let it hit you then use Payback!”
Scraggy did as he was told. Because Scraggy was hit before he used Payback, the move was stronger, which made up for the damage Scraggy had already sustained. “Now, use Brick Break!” Scraggy ran in to attack, but just as he brought his arm down, the Lotad countered with Energy Ball, sending Scraggy flying back. Scraggy didn’t want to give up, but Ben didn’t want to see Scraggy get hurt more, so he returned him to his Pokeball. Then he threw another Pokeball at the Lotad, hoping he had done enough damage. The ball wobbled, once, twice, then opened again. The Lotad had escaped. Since Scraggy was weak, there was only one Pokémon he could count on, Magikarp.
“Go Magikarp!” he yelled. The red fish-like came out and started flopping around. The Lotad looked confused. It obviously didn’t see a Magikarp as a threat. “Magikarp, use Tackle!” Magikarp flopped towards the Lotad, gaining speed. It barged into the Lotad, knocking it back a little bit. The Lotad was now angry at the little fish and used Energy Ball. Magikarp was very weak now. But this could work to Ben’s advantage.
“Magikarp, Use Flail!” To Ben’s knowledge, Flail got stronger depending on how weak the Pokémon was, and Magikarp had just sustained quite a bit of damage. Magikarp smacked the Lotad with his tail, knocking him on to his back. Ben threw another Pokeball at the Lotad. It wobbled once, twice, and then...