A single powerful word. Every culture, every species had some form of this word, whether it be only verbal communication or with written word. This word could shape the destiny of people, one use of it and it could shatter a person’s dream. And in some cases it could mean the difference between life and death. That was the situation for me. It all started four months ago...
Four Months Prior 
My name is Lyons, am I an excellent Pokemon master and dualist. Even though I was twenty-eight years of age I had been in countless battles along the frontlines and all over the globe. Through my veins ran the blood of a warrior, forged on battlefields of death. But after twelve years of service there had finally been a time of peace and I had chosen to retire from the army and get on with my life.
Today I was dressed in tan breeches, a cream colored shirt, and an overcoat of fine red silk. My brown hair was neatly tied into a ponytail that fell to my neck, while I had shaved any remnants of facial hair. At my waist were my weapons of choice, a long dueling blade, and two red and white Pokeballs containing my first two Pokemon, Whimsicott and Politoed. I thought I looked rather dashing, my clothes weren’t of the major rich kind, but they told of my status of just below wealthily.
The sun was shining brightly on the streets of London today, meaning that people were out in force. The cobbled streets were filled with people and horses. This all just added to my already good mood. I was almost to my destination when I saw a young women selling yellow lilies at a small stand. On an impulse I walked over the the stunning brunette and asked for a bouquet. It only costed a few pounds, something I could easily afford with my military savings.
When I reached my destination I couldn’t help but stare in awe at the building as I did every time I saw it. It was a beautiful brown mansion that showcased the wealth of the family that lived there. Immaculate gardens encircled the house while two guards stood at the front gate. Normally, the red clothed guards of the British army wouldn’t be guarding the house of a rich person, but one of the King’s advisor lived here. He was the son of a merchant and his family had done very well in the trading business. His holdings stretched from the Americas, to the north of Africa and to the east.
As I approached the gates, I gave each guard a nod and a salute. I had served with one of them in a unit in India, but I had rotated out and lost contact after six months.
“Good day, Lyons. Check the gardens,” said one of the young men.
“Thank you,” I said walking forward.
The house was about twenty yards from the front gate so while I walked there I took the time to admire the land around the home. Bright green grass covered the land while two large trees provided shade. Sculpted bushes were lined up along the pathway leading to the home in the shape of Pokemon. This just showcased the wealth of the owner further because only many Grass Pokemon could keep the vegetation in such immaculate condition.
I climbed the stone stairs to the door and knocked once with the brass knocker, only a young child knocked more than once. It only took twenty seconds for a young chambermaid to answer. She was wearing a black dress with a white apron and bonnet. She did a small curtsey then indicated for me to follow her.
I had already been here numerous time so the women knew exactly where I wanted to go. She led me straight down the main corridor until we had reached the back of the home and two wide french doors. She opened them and admitted me to the back garden. The back gardens were cut off from the front by wrought iron bars that topped off at eight feet and were covered by spikes, a sign that nobody was to go back there without permission. And the only entrance was through the house, hence the maid.
Although similar to the front lawn in a few ways there were some key difference that differentiated the two. For starters, the back had few plots of grass, it was mostly bushes and flower beds. At the very back was a single white gazebo that could seat at least ten people. In the center of that structure was a small fountain, often used by birds or other animals. On the right side of the garden was a small pond and to the left was a single tree over a plot of grass for casual conversation. What I liked about this garden was that it had the perfect mixture of shade and sunlight so that it resembled the outdoors without appearing faux. Another thing was that I liked was the soft scent of flowers that filled the air. The garden contained no fewer than thirty types of plants that blossomed. The strongest scent in the air right now was honeysuckle.
But the center of my attention was focused on the young lady at the gazebo. She had soft blonde hair that to fell the area just below her shoulders. She was dressed in yellow today, a broad sunlight sat atop her head, while a lavender ribbon was weaved through her hair. A sun-dress and white gloves completed her clothing.
She didn’t know I was there, her attention was focused on the black and white body of a Taillow bathing in the fountain. I slowly moved forward, not wanting to startle her. I was standing at the entrance to the gazebo when the Pokemon bathing finally looked up at me. it seemed to realize it had a audience. It squawked and flew away in a furious beating of wings. The woman watching the Pokemon turned around to see what had startled the Pokemon. Her blue eyes fell to my face and she smiled, showing her facial dimples.
My world slowed in that second as the most beautiful woman in the world looked at me. Like a flower, she was delicate but nothing could match that ethereal beauty. Down to her full mouth, to the splattering of freckles on her face. Since my mind was lost somewhere my body seemed to know what to do. I handed her the flowers, “They match your dress.” Was all that managed to come out.
She beamed me a smile full of white teeth and rose to her feet to retrieve the flowers. “They’re beautiful, thank you.”
After she had smelled the flowers my brain finally returned and stopped acting like a sixteen year old. “If it pleases you, let me plant them.” I accepted the flowers back with one hand while the other depressed the button on one of my Pokeballs.
The brown form of Whimsicott appeared. The white fur, resembling cotton, on its head quivered as it smelled all the scents teeming from the garden. I looked my oldest friend in the eye. “Please plant these here and here,” I said, pointing at spots next to the gazebo.
The Pokemon turned its beady eyes at me and chattered something I couldn’t understand, it seemed my brain still hadn’t fully returned. The Pokemon looked at the flowers then took them. It split the bouquet in half and laid each half down at the spots I wanted. It then pointed at the earth and mumbled a few words. The flowers rose up and sprouted roots, which pushed into the loamy dirt with reckless abandon. In a few seconds it looked as if the flowers had been there all along and blended perfectly with the rest of the garden. I patted the soft fur of Whimsicott.
“Thanks, you can play in the garden for a little bit.” After Whimsicott had scampered off to go play in some flowers somewhere I reached for my other Pokeball and called out the frog-like Pokemon known as Politoed. Politoed was a predominantly green creature with decorative yellow swirls on its abdomen. Politoed looked about and made a beeline for the small pond, probably hoping to find something to eat, that Pokemon loved to eat.
I grabbed the hand of Lily and escorted her to the other side of the garden where we could talk in peace. I had met Lily after I had returned from war two years ago, we both were attending a party at the time and I was enchanted by her. Because she was of the highest class it took me calling in some favors, but I was finally able to formally meet her and court her. That was two years ago today.
We chatted for about one hour before another servant brought out some lunch for us to eat. Although we had been talking for over an hour, I still hadn’t built up the nerve to ask her the question that was foremost on my mind.
I grabbed her hand and placed it in my own. “Lily.” I waited for her eyes to meet mine before I continued. “We’ve been together for two years now. I want to take our relationship to the next level.” I rose to one knee and looked her dead center in her eyes. “Will you marry me?”
She studied me intensely for a few seconds. “Under one condition: you beat me in a Pokemon battle,” she said coyly.
I frowned. “Are you serious? Right now?”
She turned a calm look my way. “Exactly. I’ll send Lilligant.”
Lilligant was a green Pokemon that sort of resembled a human in a dress with a floral hat. The things that gave it away were her orange eyes and the many greens that made up her body. Small patches of white were on her body and face. The red flower that grew on her head was in full blossom with patches of yellow popping up.
“Whimscott, time for battle.” Although both types were of the Grass type, Whimsicott knew a couple flying moves, and that could give it the edge in battle. Plus, Politoed would stand no chance against Lilligant.
Whimsicott came bounding in, patches of leaves stuck in its white fur, but they blended well with the green patches to either side of its brown head.
“Alright, start things off with a Gust, Whimsicott.”
“That’s not going to work on me,” Lily said, “Lilligant, go with a Razor Leaf attack to disrupt their attack.”
Whimsicott had already started my attack while she was calling out hers. Whimiscott was flying in a small circle as it built up a small tornado to fire at Lilligant. The cyclone of howling wind had just began to form when a flurry of razor sharp leaves entered the wind cyclone and disrupted the rotation, ending the attack. Whimsicott fell to the ground in surprise and was struck by a bright green and yellow ball of energy. Lilligant had fired off a Energy Ball attack while my Pokemon was disoriented.
“Let’s try for a Psychic attack now,” I called to my Pokemon. Although it had just fallen from the sky and got hit by an attack, it didn’t suffer much damage because it was also a Grass type. I had ordered Psychic because I noticed Lilligant’s flower was starting to glow red and pulse slightly. This was no doubt the result of a Growth move. Whimsicott wasted no time with nonsense and immediately fired two magenta colored shards of Psychic energy at its foe.
I thought the attacks were going to hit, but wall of vines sprang up from the earth to choke the attack and keep Lily’s Pokemon safe from harm. With the Psychic attack disrupted, the thorn covered vines moved in a snake-like manner in the direction of my Pokemon. I knew I didn’t have time for anything elegant, I just needed something to work.
“Try a Cotton Guard.” Whimsicott started to shake its tuff of white fur until small pieces began to break off and form a wall of cotton. The vines slammed into the balls of cotton and were stopped cold, barely doing damage. “Fake Tears now.”
When the vines receded into the ground and Whimsicott had a clear view of its foe it summoned small drops of tears to his eyes. Lillgant was readying an attack but when it saw the tears fall to the ground it lowered its arms and stopped the attack. I could hear Lily calling her Pokemon to finish the attack, but I had the Pokemon right in my trap. When Lilliigant took a step forward, Whimsicott moved forward in a blue of brown, white and green. It struck Lilligant and was at my side instantly in a U-Turn attack. Whimsicott has had a fierce smile plastered on its face, Lilligant on the other hand was quite furious.
I heard Lily call out the next attack, but I was too engrossed in thinking what I had to do next. “Let’s go with a simple Light Screen and see what she does.”
At first I couldn’t tell what was going on, Lilligant was just standing there, an intense look on its face as stared at Whimsicott; but then I noticed that every plant in the garden seemed to lean towards Lilligant, as if they was lending their power to her. I knew a moment later what was going to happen when I got buffeted by a large gust of wind that suddenly appeared out of nowhere. I couldn’t talk to Whimsicott over the roaring wind, as he was caught by surprise when the winds picked him up. When he was in the air, red shards of energy shaped like leaves started to enter the wind storm and they began to strike at Whimsicott. There was nothing I could do until the attack was finished, but the Light Screen I had called out would blunt some of the damage.
The attack ended a few seconds later when the wind died down and Whimsicott was dumped unceremoniously at my feet. “You okay?” He looked at me and chattered a string of words before climbing to his feet. I didn’t know what he was saying but I got the idea. “Fine, Hurricane.”
Whimsicott shot in the air until it was just hovering over the gardens. The once bright sky began to slowly change as clouds materialized and grew darker with every second. At first sheets of rain came crashing down and then came the real attack: wind. With a roar that shook the building, a gust of wind came howling down and picked Lilligant up like she was a feather and started to toss her around the garden.
When the attack ended Lilligant was clearly on her last legs; she was leaning against a tree breathing heavily with exhaustion. When the sun began to shine once more Whimsicott returned to my side, still smiling.
“Can we end this now?” I called to Lily.
“Agreed,” she said, appearing at my side, umbrella in hand keeping her safe from the rain while I was soaked to the bone. I called back both my Pokemon while she retrieved hers.
“So...” I started when she returned. “Does that mean yes?”
“What do you think?” And she kissed me.
We were wed one week later in a chapel near her father’s house. Her father wasn’t giddy that she had chosen me as her husband, but he soothed himself with the fact that I served Britain faithfully for many years.
That day was the best in my life. But the following day was my worst. The day after our marriage we were sitting at the new house I had purchased when a knock sounded on the door. We both were at the table eating breakfast so it was early in the morning. I told her her I would get it and for her to stay there.
At the door were four soldiers dressed in the red and white army colors and with rifles. A sergeant stepped forward. “Lyons Bartholomew Hughes.”
“You’re under arrest for sedition and treason against the Crown.”
“What?!” My protests were cut off as two of the guards seized me by the arms and escorted me to a carriage outside the door. As I was being forced inside I saw Lily coming running to the door. “Talk to your father!” I called to her before they shut the door.
Time seemed to go on forever as I was sent to a local jail. The guards refused to answer any questions and didn’t speak to me once. It wasn’t until later that night that Lily’s father came to visit me. He was pale and seemed beside himself.
“What’s going on?” I finally asked when the guard escorting him left.
“Someone has accused you of sedition and treason against the Crown during your last overseas assignment.”
“What evidence do they have?” I angrily asked. I had done nothing of the sort and for someone to tarnish my flawless record and say I was unpatriotic just made me mad to my very core.
“None that I know of, but a Lord had accused you and is clamoring for you to be put to death.”
A Lord? What had I done to deserve the wrath of such a powerful person? I hadn’t stepped on any important toes and I made sure to be cautious of every move around people of power. “Is there anything you can do?”
“I’m trying, but it’s going to be difficult. I’m trying to call in markers, but a Lord holds a lot of sway in parliament.”
I sat back defeated. “I guess we’ll have to wait for this to go before the house of Lords then.”
“I’ll talk to some Lords I know. You are the life of my daughter, I will not let them take that away from her.” He called for the guard and left a moment later.
After the first two days in that jail I was transferred to a prison somewhere outside the city and stayed there. I didn’t get a visitor until two days later. At first I thought it was Lily or her father but I was surprised to find it was neither. He stayed just outside of my cell bars and in the shadows that the torches couldn’t reach so I couldn’t see him.
“Hello, Lyons. I hope you’re enjoying your time here.”
“Who are you?”
“I am the man who has put you here: Lord Roscoe Harper.”
“For what? I’ve never wronged or met any Lord.”
“Oh? Are you sure about that? Well, let me tell you what you did. You married Lily.”
“What has that got to do with anything? I courted her with her father’s permission for two years!”
“Yes, but you are just a commoner. The morning you proposed I had gone to her house and asked for her hand in marriage. She denied me, a Lord saying that she was already being courted. I was of course furious. So I intended to find out who she seeing.” His bitter laugh echoed through my cell. “Then I found out she had denied me over a common soldier.” He all but spat the words, like saying them was poison in his mouth. “I couldn’t challenge you to a duel for her honor because you are a commoner and that would be below my station.”
“All this is because of the women I married?”
I could tell he was surprised. “Yes.”
“When I get out of this prison, expect me to come knocking.”
He laughed again. “Good luck.” He left.
At first, time passed in hours, then days, followed by weeks as I rotted in the cell. But my time wasn’t just in the cell. Everyday for six hours a day I was brought out of my cell and sent to a torture chamber. Everyday I was subjected to terrors not found on battlefields or spoken in polite company. They always said that I just needed to confess and it would all end. But every time I said, “No.”
It was during those times that I learned how powerful words could be. Before, I just considered them to be a medium in which I could communicate my wishes to another person. But now, I had a whole new appreciation for them. With just a few words and nothing to back it up, I was thrown into this hell hole because of a jealous man.
Four months later I was standing outside for the first time in months. My head was hooded and I was on a wooden platform. “Do you plead guilty to the charges?” the man droned on.
“So be it,” he finished.
A second past until I felt it, the weight settled on my shoulders and around my neck. After that I was in free-fall for a quick second before I felt a quick jerk and then nothing.
Lyons Bartholomew Hughes was hung at a prison outside of London for nothing at all. The warden in charge of the person, one Roscoe Harper, a Lord claimed it was a mixup and the wrong person was executed. This was because all charges against Lyons were found to be false and he was ordered to be released the day before. Everyone knew what had happened, but nobody had any evidence to confront the man.
One week later Roscoe was found dead in his mansion, his throat slit. Nobody saw a thing and nobody cared. His death was deemed to be a suicide, but nobody questioned how he managed to do it with his hands tied behind his back. Or the Lilligant petals scattered around his corpse, when only one person in the region had the rare Pokemon.
Five months after the death of her husband, Lily gave birth to a son named Lyons Thomas Hughes.
Taking the Grass type.