Story Name: Brothers, Chapter One (Innocence)
Status: Completed and ready for grading.
Attempted Pokemon: Ralts x2, Magikarp
Character Count: 32,147 counting spaces
Notes: About a year ago, I wrote Fate and Dreams. While writing it, I began to really enjoy the storyline; not only because it featured Sere as a cameo, but because of Zen and the community that he grew up in. I plan to write a series about Zen's adventures one day, but for now the current objective is to write a series on Sensei, who played a major role in Zen's life.
In the sheltered confines of the Haven, a Gardevoir lay dying.
This news alone was surprising to no one. After all, this was the Haven, a place of peace and harmony where one could live free from the ravages of humanity. The majority of those who lived in this specific Haven were mainly Ralts and their natural evolutions (a few Volbeat and Illumise snuck in every now and then, but were allowed to grudgingly stay). A Ralts, cut down in the flower of youth, may have been saddening to some, but was still considered normal. A Gardevoir dying of natural causes was part of the natural order of things, and was accepted. This Gardevoir, however, was quite different. In his long life, he had taught the members of the Haven their lessons, along with their children, and their children's children. He was considered ageless by the older ones, and untouchable by the much younger Ralts.
So when the news had traveled around that Sensei, the elder of the Haven, was dying, the entire community mourned.
The ancient Gardevoir lay in his home alone, with only his thoughts for company. This was entirely by his choice; if he wished it, the entire Haven population would be at his side in a moment's notice. Sensei wanted to be alone during his final moments, and had strongly worded his desire a few days ago when the first worried onlookers had arrived. <Let my memories be my only companions,> he stated to his neighbors, shooing them away with a frail, wispy hand. Memories were one thing he had in abundance, and planned to savor them all, both soothing and painful ones.
A young Ralts running to the Haven limits, holding a shimmering stone carrying the dawn's light...
His first class undertaking their ceremony to become a Gardevoir, with him beaming in pride...
The day he had met his mate, where she had been caretaking some of the children by the lake...
One image, which had stayed with him every waking moment of his life, came into view once more. A Ralts, barely a day older than Sensei, was watching the stars with him. They had been talking about their hopes and dreams for the future, yet had been living for the moment, deep in the innocence of youth.
<Glenn, say hello to your little brother!>
A young Ralts, just hatched the day before, peered sleepily up at his mother. In the Gardevoir's arms, within Glenn's reach, nestled another creature that looked just like him, yet was fast asleep. A miniscule part of the eggshell still clung to the newborn's head, as if the portion was reluctant to abandon what it had been protecting for so long. The mother, with a loving hand, gently brushed off the shell and let it fall to the floor, eventually forgotten.
Glenn rubbed his eyes, and studied this new thing. For the first time in the Ralt's new life, he experienced jealousy. Here was this newcomer, daring to look like him, and resting next to Mother of all things. Grumpy for being woken up and looking for a way to vent this newfound feeling, Glenn lashed at this imposter with a tiny fist. The reaction was near instantaneous; the new Ralts began to wail loudly, it's cries echoing on the makeshift shelter's walls.
<Why did you do that?> the young mother Gardevoir admonished, lightly slapping Glenn with her spare hand. <He's your brother, and you two need to look out for each other!> Sighing, she glided away from Glenn, rocking the newborn Ralts from side to side until the crying died away. While rocking, a soothing light appeared to pulse and radiate from her body, in perfect tempo with her movements. Satisfied that her child had calmed down, she lay him down in the makeshift crib next to her older son. <The Haven may look out for their own, but you will only have one brother.> Giving Glenn one final warning look, she walked away to the storage room, collecting supplies for dinner.
Glenn pouted a moment, upset by this sudden injustice. More than anything else, he wanted to cry for being punished for apparently no reason. Looking over at this new person, this “brother”, made him think twice though. It had already fallen asleep, and seemed to be perfectly content. It began to move slowly, looking for more comfort. In moments, the younger Ralts was resting his head on Glenn's lap, using his brother as a makeshift pillow. Wanting to get some sleep as well, Glenn decided to settle down into a more comfortable position and ignore this new entity.
As the earlier image faded, a new one began to form in the ancient Gardevoir's mind. This one, while these events had happened many years ago, the images still played crystal clear in his memories... almost as clear as the lake that they had spent many days of their childhood lazing by. This particular memory focused on the events that eventually led to a sudden change in his brother's mindset, along with his way of life. It all began with a small discovery inside the lake...
<Sei, get a look at this!>
Sei, lazing underneath an ancient oak tree, jolted to attention. Shaking his head out of yet another daydream, he looked away from his skygazing a moment to see what his brother wanted this time. Glenn always seemed to be on the move and impulsive, wanting Sei to always look at something new with him. This “something new” could range from a rare Pokemon sighting to a strangely-shaped leaf (once it was both of these two sightings combined- the two brothers nearly had a heart attack when the sleeping Sewaddle had moved!) While being drug around everywhere was annoying at times, he bore it with little complaint.
For today, the two brothers had decided to explore by the lake found near the outer limits of the Haven. While further away than the pond found in the center of the community, this one was nearly twice the size, and much less visited. The water was clear as crystal, reflecting the sun's light brilliantly. The lake bed, while appearing to be quite close, was in actuality quite far down. To add to the mystique, natural underwater caves were found below the surface, allowing many places for aquatic Pokemon to enter and leave the area. The western and eastern side on the surface was framed by two trees on each side, giving any visitors to the area ample shade should they wish it. While the sun was currently hidden by numerous clouds, the day was still quite warm. The tree's shade, along with the cool air that the lake seemed to emit, had caused the two Ralts to laze a while. Sei had been half asleep on the western side, and had assumed that Glenn had been right beside him.
<About time you got out of your daydreaming! It almost got away while I was waiting on you!> Glenn called out to Sei. He was kneeling at the lake's edge, trying to find a comfortable position on the rocky ground while raptly watching a slowly moving figure in the lake. He kept his gaze on the figure, motioning for Sei to stand beside him.
Glenn was the perfect embodiment of a delinquent Ralts, or so the elders said. He was always covered in scrapes and bruises, mainly from exploring the nearby caves, searching the open meadows for new discoveries, or climbing trees looking for sleeping Pokemon. He also tended to use his voice rather then speaking with his mind like the rest of the Haven. Because of this his horns, one of the signature trademarks of a Ralts, were used more for trying to physically lift things above his head rather than being used to focus his psychic powers. It had taken the combined efforts of their mother and Sei to finally break Glenn down to the “normal” form of speech and methods. <Rude, far too reckless, and not willing to listen to his elders,> one of the Gardevoir had once said to describe the boy.
Sei, on the other hand, was the exact opposite. Despite only being slightly younger, the Ralts was very small for his age and quite wiry, even for his species. This was due to trying to utilize his telekinetic powers in every daily task possible, leaving him wispy and frail. Instead of going off on adventures, Sei was perfectly content with staying still and observing his surroundings. He did share one trait with his brother, though; he constantly asked why things were the way they were at the Haven. Simply knowing the rules was not enough, he wanted to learn the reason behind the rule as well. <A good child, but far too questioning about the basic way of things,> an elder had said, thinking Sei was out of thought-speak range.
<What are you looking at, another Magikarp?> Sei replied to his brother, settling down next to Glenn and dully followed his gaze. Glenn's current obsession was on the Pokemon who lived in the lake. Their mother had grounded the adventurous Ralts from tree climbing, mainly due to accidentally wrecking their neighbor's roof while trying to follow a stray Wurmple.
<No, 'not another Magikarp',> Glenn toned blandly, mocking Sei, <a gold Magikarp! Look at it's scales shimmer in the water!> His telepathic message radiated triumph, proof that he was proud of discovering such an amazing creature.
Sei peered down at the water, squinting. <That looks like a normal Magikarp to me, reflecting the sun's light. Are you sure that you're not seeing things?> He shrugged his tiny shoulders, <Plus, who has ever heard of a gold Magikarp? They're orange, you know that.>
The Magikarp, oblivious to the two curious creatures observing him, dully swam along in a circle. The fish's scales did indeed shine brilliantly, but it was hard to tell what the exact color was from this angle. It kept moving to it's right erratically, as if it kept glimpsing something out of the corner of it's eye. Little did the fish know that all he kept noticing was it's own fin, moving with the body every time the Magikarp pushed itself forward.
<You know full well that's not sunlight! It's overcast out, and light doesn't make them shimmer like that,> Glenn fumed at his brother, trying to see if he could get a closer look at the fish. Due to a trick of the light, the Magikarp seemed just within arm's reach. In reality, it was at least a foot below him. <Ugh, I wish we knew how to swim!>
<Our forms can't swim well until we reach Kirlia stage, you know that,> Sei repeated for what he felt like was the thousandth time. Ralts, due to their compact form and their size, were forbidden to learn how to swim. While this rule made certain that none of the younger children tried to swim to the middle of the lake on a dare, this also made it so a Ralts accidentally falling into the water was almost always fatal... yet another rule that Sei questioned. <Plus, how would that solve anything? It would just swim away before you could get close.>
<I'd catch it before it could get away,> Glenn stated confidently, puffing out his tiny chest. <It can't be much harder to catch then a Caterpie, it doesn't even have legs!> In Glenn's mind, the more legs one had, the faster you could move. This mindset followed for underwater creatures as well.
<Catch like you did that Wurmple last week?> Sei pointed out, shaking his tiny head at Glenn's thought-set. <Zaik is still telling everyone how you fell through the roof and into his food storage room.> Zaik was their closest neighbor, and a good friend of their mother. While he had the fame feminine, ballroom-gown design that all Gardevoir possessed, there was an unmistakeable rough, sturdy aura about Zaik. Like all the adult Gardevoir in the Haven, he took deep pride in his work.
Glenn turned beet-red in the face upon hearing the story being retold. <That Wurmple rigged that trap. He got some of his friends to weaken the roof,> he sulked, trying to hide his shame. He had received double the usual mind-lashing that night; once from Zaik, and yet again by his mother.
<You try saying that to the lead House-Maker's face then, not me,> Sei jokingly responded, lightly ribbing his brother in the side. Even Glenn should know better than to criticize someone about their life's craft, especially an elder one like Zaik. To mock or criticize another's craft was a deep insult to the person.
<Maybe I will. Roofs that brittle are a safety hazard, after all,> Glenn thought in a low tone. He rubbed his head subconsciously in memory of that day; he had fallen through head-first due to tumbling on a String Shot, and had landed into a barrel full of Oran Berries that were not even close to ripening yet.
<You go ahead and do that, then.... Just make sure I'm not with you at the time!> Sei loved his brother, but he was not willing to risk the wrath of their neighbor, especially one of the few that did not consider him odd for always questioning the Haven's rules.
Before Glenn could come up with another retort, a sudden movement, heading straight towards them. caught the two brothers' eyes. An orb of violet light was lazily approaching them and stopped in place, hovering between the two Ralts.
<Looks like Mother is calling us home for lunch,> Glenn managed to finally say, focusing on the orb. There was always something hypnotic about the light, no matter how many times he saw it.
Sei sighed and covered his brother's eyes, keeping his shut as well. <We aren't supposed to keep staring at it! You know what happened last time you kept following Mother's Confuse Ray technique.> That day had ended oddly for both of them; Glenn had ended up on the outskirts of town ranting about finding a strange light, and Sei had to explain the situation to the Gardevoir who had spotted the two outside after curfew. The elders, while accepting it as an excuse, had been oddly cold to the two brothers afterwords, and had walked away as soon as they dropped the two boys off at their home.
<But it's so pretty...> Glenn remarked dazedly. No matter how many times he was warned, Glenn always ended up glued on that light. <Wish I could make a Ray as well.>
<You have to have the patience first,> Sei joked, but silently agreed with his brother. For some reason, no matter how hard he tried, he could not replicate the move. As far as he knew, only their mother could use it. <For now, let's go eat!>
Glenn nodded joyfully in response, all thought of the Ray forgotten <Agreed! I'm so hungry I can eat an entire Sitrus Berry!> He stood up abruptly, making his way through the tall grass, and dashed straight for home. <Last one there is a rotten Weedle!>
Sei mutely chuckled to himself, watching his brother run away. Instead of following Glenn, he stood in place, concentrating on a location in his mind's eye. <You make a terrible Ralts, brother. Why run...when you can Teleport!> In an eyeblink, the younger Ralts brother had disappeared.
The Haven was located in a secluded, naturally domed area, the ground as rocky and desolate as the walls and caves that shielded the inhabitants. A few hardy trees, their bark well worn from the elements, along with some scraggy grass patches managed to survive in this place, thriving especially near the lake and ponds. These water sources were also crucial to the population's survival; the Berry fields would only take root in the soil near them, even if a farmer decided to make a plot elsewhere and carry water to the field daily. A few paths, cut into the land to help the residents find their neighbor's homes, were barely discernible from the rest of the land.
It was on one of these paths that Glenn raced home on, only stopping twice to see if his younger, less physically adept brother was following him. After finally approaching the shelter, he allowed himself a smug smile when he saw that his brother was nowhere in sight. Once his opened the door, however, his grin quickly faded. <How did you beat me again!? You never passed me!> Glenn called out, out of breath and surprised to see his brother calmly eating lunch beside their mother.
Their mother sighed, exasperated that her son always seemed to forget that he had psychic powers. <Sei Teleported home, dear. If you weren't always acting before thinking, you could have come home the same way.>
<Where's the challenge in that though?> Glenn asked rhetorically, grabbing his share of Berries from the homemade basket resting on the floor. He looked for the extra Razz Berries that he had stashed away on the bottom, and glowered when he saw that they had magically teleported themselves: straight to his brother's bowl, that is.
Sei simply stared at Glenn, a tiny grin forming on his face. <Sorry, brother, but winner take all, right?> To further express this, he took one of the Berries and slowly chewed on it, savoring the food's juiciness while looking at his brother the whole time.
<Sei, be nice to your brother,> their mother warned gently. This was done more out of daily routine rather then any malice between the two boys, so she left the argument on that note. She walked elegantly over to the main basket, fixing up her own share of berries into her own bowl since both of her children had taken their fill. She knelt down next to her two sons, and the three ate in silence.
The home of Lona, the Collector of the Haven, was a simple one. Their shelter lay inside of an enormous, ancient, hollowed-out redwood, naturally defensive against the weather and always dry. There were not really any “rooms” per say; the sleeping area and the dining area where sectioned off by yards of silk, spun by the Caterpie and Weedle of the sanctuary. The only separate area in the home was the storage area, which was accessible due to a trench dug into the ground and covered by a large chunk of bark. Their door exiting the tree was the only section that was not naturally made; the door had been a gift from Zaik, noticing that the previous door (yet another broken-off slab of bark) had left the entire home mostly open to the elements.
The one section that stood out the most though was a certain corner of the home, where the Ralts brothers were forbidden to poke around in. This corner was proof of Lona's title of the Collector. In this area, wonders of all shapes and sizes sat silently, only moving when the Gardevoir took her findings to the Festival, held once a year in the Haven. The Festival was designed so the other Gardevoir could show off their craft, and trade amongst their peers. Her items consisted mostly of items rarely found inside the sanctuary, mostly stones and a few shining gems. These usually sold for a high price, mainly to the more vain members of the Haven and aspiring jewelcrafters.
Lona herself was an oddity to the younger members of the community. The Gardevoir appeared frail, unnaturally frail, yet always seemed to be filled with vigor. She seemed to have an aura of mysteriousness wherever she went, adding more to her image as a Collector of unusual objects. She was always willing to trade all of her findings, or even bequeath one of her artifacts to a young aspiring Collector. Lona held this mindset with everything save for one object: a tattered piece of cloth. When Sei and Glenn had asked her why she would keep such an old rag, she would only smile sadly and embrace her two sons, promising that she would tell them one day.
Two weeks had passed, and Glenn was still fixated on the oddly-colored Magikarp.
Every morning started the same. The three would wake up at the same time as their mother, mainly due to all of them sharing the same sleeping area. While Sei would take his time fully waking up and Lona would prepare breakfast in the same steady pace she had done so all year, Glenn would jump out of bed, rush down his breakfast, and head straight down to the lake. Lona, afraid that her impatient son would fall into the lake any day now, had lifted the grounding a few days ago. While Glenn did indeed go back to climbing trees for a full day afterwords, the very next day he was back at the lake once more.
<Make sure your brother stays safe,> Lona stated worryingly to Sei, trying to not wring her hands out of nervous habit. <Remember, you two are->
<”The only siblings we'll know.”> finished Sei. <I know, Mother. You tell us this almost every day.>
<Still, be careful. You two are my most treasured possessions.> Lona's hand rested a moment on Sei's small head, marveling that it had only been a year ago when her children had hatched. Her gaze on her son seemed to waver a moment, then she abruptly turned around. <Make sure you two are home before midday; we're expecting Zaik to come over for lunch.>
<We'll be here,> Sei promised wholeheartily. He hated seeing his mother like this; she always seemed to be so sad. Hugging his mother's legs for a moment, he headed off on the windswept path to the lake, deciding to walk this time around. He had a better chance to run into Glenn this way rather then Teleporting there and waiting for his brother.
Lona waved her youngest off, watching as he took the natural path down to the lake. While the sun had only risen a mere hour ago, it's light shone brightly in the sky, promising another sunny day. When he had fallen out of sight, the Gardevoir decided to tidy up the shelter to help occupy her mind. Grabbing a homemade broom, she began to sweep the worst part of the dirt out of the home; it was a futile effort since the floor was bare ground, but she tried nonetheless to pass the time.
<Come on you stupid...argh, look at me, you dumb fish!>
Glenn had made it to the lake in record time after all, with Sei nowhere in sight. He had been staring at the fish almost nonstop for almost five minutes, yet the Magikarp still ignored the strange Ralts. It had been this way all day yesterday, and the day before, and all the days he could remember before that. No matter the day, no matter what angle he tried to look at the creature, Glenn could never truly decide on the Magikarp's color. This day would be different, however. Today, Glenn had a plan. It was elegantly thought of, worked over in his mind, tested via imaginary situations in his head, and 100% foolproof. Reaching out to the object next to him, Glenn lifted the Ultimate Item: a thin, yet sturdy-looking branch. The branch had been soaked by water the night before, then tested to see if it's durability would still hold. The size of the object seemed to be massive next to it's holder; being half the length of the Ralts.
<Meet your equal, evil one!> Glenn mentally intoned in what he hoped was an impressive thought-voice before smoothly placing the stick point into the water, and went to poke the Magikarp with the stick.
The first strike missed, as well as the second one; tricks of the Magikarp's reflection in the water made it hard to hit the fish on target. The third one managed to finally hit a fin, and the fourth hit struck the Pokemon on the midsection of it's body, brushing off a couple of scales.
The Magikarp finally looked up, towards this odd legged creature that was poking him for no reason at all. It swam in place, seeming at loss on what to do next.
Another figure, it's long form twisted comfortably inside one of the lower caves in the lake, cast a baleful look towards the spectacle. It released a low growl, making the water slightly ripple with the sound.
Glenn pulled up the stick, nearly dancing with the fact that he had finally suceeded in his goal; a small scale was still attached to the stick's point. Looking over his prize had finally proved him right: the scale was a shimmering, unmistakeable, golden color. It reminded him of a coin that his mother had found inside the southern tunnels on the Haven outskirts, something that Lona had called “money”. <YES!> Glenn shouted. Wait until his brother saw this!
<What are you shouting about?> Sei had finally caught up to his brother, badly out of breath. What did he do, run the whole way here? First it had taken him forever to catch up, now Glenn was waving a small branch around like a madman.
<I finally proved you wrong,> Glenn crowed, still waving the stick around, <It is a golden Magikarp, and I have proof of it!>
Sei looked his brother over, a skeptical look crossing over the Ralt's features. <Did you hit your head or something? Magikarp are orange, and always will be.> Maybe Glenn had been out in the sun too long, or had been Tackled by one of the bugs on the way to the lake.
Glenn angrily pointed the stick point out to Sei, demanding him to see for himself. When they both looked at the point, however, the scale was nowhere to be found. <But I had it, the ultimate proof...> He wanted to punch Sei for the pitying look he was giving him. <I'll do it again, just so you know I'm not a liar,> Glenn finalized, pointing the stick towards the Magikarp once more. This time, he knew exactly where to hit.
This time though, the Magikarp was ready. It had no idea what the two creatures above them were talking about, but he saw one of them was holding his current nemesis: the Pointed Object of Pain. Swimming itself slowly into position, the Pokemon aimed, then leaped straight at the two Ralts. The sun's light appeared to dance on the Pokemon's body a moment, revealing the creature in all it's shining glory. Such an awe-filling display left the brothers motionless a moment, before one of them finally sprung into action.
<Ack, it's going to eat us!> Glenn panicked, wildly swinging around the branch in every direction. He may as well have been blindfolded; with every swing he made, the Magikarp seemed to move at the last second, it's splashed moving in almost perfect timing with the swongs.
<Well I'll be a Beedrill's uncle, you were right,> Sei admitted, staring at the very golden Magikarp heading towards them, then barely dodged as the stick nearly beamed him <Watch it! Do I look like a fish to you?>
<Sorry,> Glenn muttered, then aimed another swing towards the Magikarp...only stopping at the last moment as he noticed that the Pokemon was only flopping up and down on the ground. It seemed to be out of breath, staring up at the two as if he blamed all of his troubles on them. <What's wrong with it?>
Sei only shook his head, watching as the Magikarp weakly Splashed around. <Maybe it's just a baby?>
The brother's thoughts were broken when a loud roar suddenly rang through the air. Looking around to see what had happened, their gaze rested on the frantic Magikarp. Glenn gave a loud gulp. <Did that thing just->
The sky above the lake's surface seemed to explode with water as an enormous azure creature rose up, answering her child's cry. The giant serpent eyed her child worryingly, then locked her gaze on the two Ralts.
<We need to get moving, NOW!> Sei called out to Glenn, and pulled on his brother's arm, <That thing can eat us in one gulp!> This action proved to do little good in the end; moving his larger, better built brother was akin to moving a large rock.
Glenn held his ground, still staring at the Gyarados. After locking eyes with the serpent for a moment, he began to chuckle; not a telepathic one, but a full-voiced, insanely long laugh. Seeing that Sei was giving him a look as if his brother had suddenly sprouted wings, he finally responded. <Don't you see, Sei? If we can take this thing down, we'll be heroes!>
<Have you lost it!? That's a Gyarados! Not even the elders want to fight them if they can help it!> Sei tried to plead with his brother, but it was no use; Glenn was already closing his eyes and concentrating, trying to clear his mind for the coming battle. Sighing, Sei prepared the Calm Mind technique alongside his brother. The move had managed to remove most of his fear, leaving only resolve. He had promised their mother that he would look after Glenn; there was no turning back now.
Gyarados watched the two Ralts and chuckled to herself, the sound coming off as a low rumble. They had dared to attack her child, and now they were going after*her? Such an attack would be admirable, if they were not mere children. She began to twist her sinuous body back and forth, following the steps to an ancient dance. She began to glow blue and moved towards the Ralts pair, moving faster then before.
Sei, hearing the sudden movement, acted quickly. He began to scrunch up his face into the most innocent look as possible, trying to appear as harmless as possible. While his eyes, covered in a light green fur like most Ralts, were unable to be seen, he managed to pull off the move regardless due to forming a small, innocent smile with his mouth. He made a sign to his brother, indicating that he should do the same.
Glenn, however, had other plans. He saw little need in weakening the serpent if the creature could be killed in possibly one blow. The Ralts focused on the sparse flota around them, concentrating on making the stray leaves and grass rise. Soon he had a cluster of leaves circling around his tiny body, an innate wind from the move shielding him from any cuts. Pointing a small hand at the Gyarados, Glenn let loose his Magical Leaf attack.
Gyarados appeared to be in a trance as she followed Sei's Charm. Perhaps these children weren't worth fighting after all; her child was less then a tail-length away, she could just scoop up her young one and be on her way. As she moved her head down to pick up the Magikarp, however, Glenn's attack hit the edge of her face. She swiveled about about instantly, and swept down on the two, ready to eat them in one bite.
Sei and Glenn were unable to move, paralyzed in fear. This monster was too big, too fast, there was no point in running-
<HOLD STILL!> a voice intoned to the two, making the brothers jump in place. Suddenly, a very familiar Gardevoir materialized just behind them. They only knew one Gardevoir who exuded that aura, who had arms scarred due to dealing with carpentry all of their life...
<Zaik! How did you-> Glenn blurted, Sei simply staring in shock.
<No time to explain! Hold on tight, and don't move,> commanded Zaik. He placed a wispy arm on each Ralts, and the three vanished into thin air. Moments later, they reappeared about fifty feet back, currently out of the sea serpent's reach. <That Gyarados is all yours, Lona!> he said, signaling to the second Gardevoir that had just materialized.
Lona, despite being much smaller then the Gyarados, walked steadily towards the creature. All traces of being a loving mother were gone, in her place stood a blank, emotionless slate. <Time for you to say goodnight,> she said coldly. <No one threatens my children and gets away with it!>
Gyarados, surprised by this turn of events, faced her new opponent. She tried to make the Gardevoir back off by staring her down: a fatal mistake which would cost her the fight.
Lona lifted her head, locking her gaze with the Gyarados. Her eyes began to glow a brilliant crimson red, giving the Gardevoir an otherworldly appearance. As her gaze intensified, small waves of energy, made from the same red hue, began to lazily drift from Lona's eyes up to the Gyarados.
The Atrocious Pokemon, suddenly drowsy, tried to fight the effects by jerking her massive head away, but it was too late. As she turned, the Hypnosis effect had finally taken hold. Giving a final, tired growl, her sinuous form sunk into the water, fast asleep.
The fight over for now, Lona moved over to a new Pokemon near the lake edge. The Magikarp was still out of the water, and had stopped moving moments ago. The fish's golden body, once as bright as a newly-polished coin, was becoming a dull, bronzed shade. She knelt down next to it, checking to see if the fish still lived.
<We're grounded, aren't we,> Glenn said quietly, looking over at Zaik. While the thrill of facing their first opponent still coursed in the Ralts veins, it was slowly being replaced by the fact that he was probably in the worst trouble of his life.
<If it was up to me, you two would be stuck in your shelter until you reached Kirlia stage,> Zaik replied gruffly, finally releasing the two boys' shoulders from his lockhold. <The final decision is up to your mother, not me.>
Sei had moved forward, and was moving quietly to stand beside his mother. <The Magikarp, is it...dead?>
<More importantly, are we grounded?> Glenn thought-spoke louder, moving a step forward.
Lona looked up from the Magikarp, an unreadable look on her face, and stared at her two sons.