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Messages - K-NiGhT

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1
Nintendo / Re: General Pokémon Mystery Dungeon
« on: January 09, 2020, 11:58:49 PM »
speak for yourself

I played all the missions I was allowed to and even used all my Dojo Tickets :(

2
Nintendo / Re: General Pokémon Mystery Dungeon
« on: January 09, 2020, 06:17:20 PM »
it's brittney bitch

RESCUE TEAM REMAKES CONFIRMED

3
Story Telling / Re: Cracked: A Nuzlocke Story
« on: November 23, 2019, 07:00:53 AM »
Update Fifteen: Infiltration
The Team Rocket Hideout was a bit more tame than what I had expected. It had basically all the trappings of a common office building, and not much else. The real problem, however, could be found in the sheer number of Rocket grunts swarming the place. Luckily for me, nobody had heard the commotion at the top of the stairs, and were going about their business as if nothing was wrong.

I was definitely nervous, there was no denying that. If I was caught here, getting into a simple Pokemon battle was probably the least of my worries. I had to stick to the shadows and keep as silent as possible, which was certainly not a skill I practiced often. Nonetheless, I did my best and slowly made my way through the base, taking care to remain out of sight. Things were going relatively smoothly until I heard an unfortunate shout from the staircase I had descended from.

“HEY!” a female grunt bellowed. “The topside lookout got taken out! We might have an intruder in the Hideout! Find them!”

I quickly panicked and ran into a nearby empty closet, shutting off the lights as I did so. The second I managed to find a spot to hide in the corner, cloaked by shadows, a small squad of Team Rocket members ran by in the hallway, hot on my trail.

As soon as I thought the coast was clear, I reached for a Poke Ball and called out one of my team members. In a quick flash, Kai emerged in his new Kadabra form. “You called?” he asked.

“Yeah,” I answered. “I’m in a bit of a bind here. We’re deep in Team Rocket territory, and if we get caught it could be really bad. Can you use your psychic abilities to help out here?”

Kai sat in thought for approximately three seconds before giving a succinct, “Yes.” His eyes glowed a clear blue in the darkness of the closet for a few more seconds before he spoke again. “I’ve set a marker for us in this location. The next time I use my Teleport ability, it will take us back here.”

“Good thinking,” I praised quietly.

“If you give me a few more moments, I can use my Future Sight to figure out where we need to go,” the Kadabra continued. I breathed a sigh of relief. Having a Psychic type Pokemon like Kai around was a serious blessing for this team. His sharp mind and powerful abilities were useful both on and off the battlefield.

After a short time of planning and plotting, I waited until I thought the coast was completely clear to exit my hiding spot and continue the infiltration. Along the way, Kai and I noticed an elevator tucked in the corner of the floor. I could hardly believe that this place went any further underground than it already did, but that was because I wasn’t aware of the full extent of Team Rocket’s influence. Upon stepping into the elevator, I noticed that there were three floors underneath. The button designating the lowest floor wasn’t lit up, and a keyhole was placed next to it. This posed a problem. If I was going to find out anything interesting about Team Rocket from this investigation, it would most likely be down there. However, to find a key, I’d likely have to blow my cover.

Just then, another Poke Ball from my Bag popped open, and Darwin came out. “Ooh! Ooh! I have an idea!” he shouted.

Out of instinct, I panicked and reached to grab Darwin, but he was too quick for me. “I’ll distract them! Leave it to me! Find the key! I’ll meet you guys outside!” Before I could object, Darwin was gone. Kai and I watched his sprint down the hallway, and then he rounded a corner. As worried as I was about him, running interference was perfect for someone as speedy as Darwin. However, I didn’t want to leave him to fend for himself since he was still pretty new to the team, so I got out yet another Poke Ball and threw out Javelin.

“Follow Darwin, and make sure he doesn’t get hurt,” I instructed quickly. Javelin nodded wordlessly, quickly observing and taking stock of the situation. With a quick flap of her powerful wings, the Fearow was off to catch up with Darwin. Checking my remaining Pokemon, I still had Caesar, Bepis, Kai, and Sylvester. Bepis wouldn’t be able to battle effectively in the cramped space, so I would have to rely more heavily on the remaining three.

Down the hall, I saw some more Rocket Grunts running in multiple directions, Pokemon at their sides. Satisfied with the team’s handiwork, I got back into the elevator and shut the door. We still didn’t have the necessary key, but an idea popped into my head. I turned to Kai. “Can you use your telekinesis to move the elevator?”

“I suppose I could, though it would be pretty difficult to do accurately,” he hypothesized. “You would have to let me rest for some time after I finish.” After focusing once more, Kai’s eyes shot open, glowing a brilliant blue. “Hang on,” he said, and as he did the elevator began to shake. I braced on the handrail as the car screeched and groaned, violently making its way down to the bottom against its will. Kai was visibly straining, but managed to get us all the way to the very bottom floor and pried the door open.

With his task completed, Kai’s eyes returned to normal as he slumped down to the ground. I smiled and returned him to his Poke Ball. “You did well,” I assured him. “Get some rest.”

The bottom floor of the Hideout was pitch dark and dead quiet, but the sounds of the struggle on the upper floors could be picked up if one listened hard enough. I could only hope that Darwin and Javelin would be able to hold up on their own, but the occasional blast of thunder was reassuring. As I tried to adjust to the darkness, I was blinded by a bright light turning on across the room.

"So, you've made it here."

The voice was deep and smooth on the surface, but cold and intimidating undertones were clearly present. As my vision returned to me, I could make out the features of the man behind the voice, who would turn out to be one of my greatest adversaries. He had very short, nearly buzz-cut black hair, and dark brown eyes that felt like they saw through me entirely. He was wearing a very expensive looking black suit with a red shirt underneath, and a red letter R was embroidered on the pocket.

“Not only did an intruder make it all the way to me, but they’re a young child!” he continued. “Tell me, what’s your name?”

Politeness stood in the way of common sense as my mouth opened before my brain could even process. “My name is Marshal,” I said. “I’m here to…”

“Battle me?” the man asked, attempting to finish my sentence for me. “A foolish endeavor, to be sure.”

“Actually, I just wanted to figure out who you were,” I admitted. “I had no real intention to battle anyone except Erika today.” There was some truth to that, but two halves of me were screaming different things at each other.

“Run!” said one.

“Test yourself!” said the other.

The boss smirked. “Amusing. I have a proposition for you, though. I’ll tell you a little bit more about myself if you battle me. Does that sound reasonable?”

The half of myself wanting to measure my abilities won in that moment, reason be damned. “I’ll agree to your terms, sir.” I grabbed two Poke Balls and threw them out, revealing Caesar and Sylvester. They both looked at the Rocket Boss and snarled, instantly perceiving him as a threat.

The dark-haired man shook his head. “Decent selection,” he admitted. “I suppose we’ll do this the Hoenn way, then.” Taking out two of his own Poke Balls, he summoned two Pokemon I had never seen before. One was a quadrupedal Pokemon covered in rocky plating and a pointy horn at the tip of its face. The other was a marsupial-like Pokemon with a pouch that looked like it was there to house its offspring.

“Rhyhorn and Kangaskhan,” Caesar said, helping me out. “One is Ground and Rock type, and the other is Normal type, respectively.”

I nodded, trying my best not to acknowledge that I understood my Ivysaur in front of the dangerous looking man. The strategy here would be simple, in other words.

Without warning, the battle began. Rhyhorn charged straight into Caesar with reckless abandon, attempting to stab him with its sharp horn. It was so sudden, Caesar wasn’t able to react, and stood frozen as the enemy charged at him.

In a flash, Sylvester sprang into action. “A real hero is always prepared for danger!” he shouted, suddenly between Caesar and Rhyhorn. With a swift motion, the little Machop struck the attacker with a powerful Low Kick, knocking Rhyhorn off its feet and into the air. As the spiked Pokemon sailed over Sylvester and toward Caesar, he turned around. “You can take it from here!”

Caesar quickly managed to focus. “Right!” he shouted. “Marshal, if you please!”

I nearly felt it was unnecessary to give orders at this point, but I still shouted, “Caesar, use Vine Whip!” for the sake of keeping up appearances. Before I even finished speaking, Caesar’s vines were extended, grappling Rhyhorn while it was still in midair. In one swift move, he reared back, using every bit of might he had to toss Rhyhorn behind him and slammed him into the ground with a mighty suplex maneuver.

Sylvester, meanwhile, was more focused on keeping Kangaskhan at bay. The large Parental Pokemon thrashed about, attempting to flatten Sylvester, but he was too quick. He bobbed and weaved through every stomp and slam while simultaneously sneaking in a few good jabs. He looked like he was perfectly comfortable fighting an opponent that was much larger than him, as there was at least a five foot difference between the two. Assuming that he was alright fighting on his own, I turned my attention back to Caesar. “Okay, Caesar! Like we practiced!”

“Right!” Caesar confirmed. He shook his body, and a few leaves began to fall from the bud on his back. Instead of falling to the floor, however, they floated around him for a moment.

“Now, Razor Leaf!” I shouted, debuting Caesar’s new move. The leaves surrounding Caesar shot straight towards Rhyhorn, making noticeable scratches and scrapes on its armor plating. The Pokemon gave a pained cry before crumpling to the ground, unconscious and unable to continue.

I would have taken a moment to celebrate, if I hadn’t looked over to see Sylvester get tossed into Caesar like a ragdoll. It seemed that Kangaskhan was able to wear him down, and grabbed him while his guard was down. Now both of my Pokemon were prone on the floor, as the boss smirked from the opposite side of the room.

“Now, finish it with a Mega Punch.”

The mere mention of the move was enough to send a chill down my spine. That same attack was what Lt. Surge had used when Gonz was killed. It was very powerful, and could potentially spell the end for anyone on the squad. I had to do something, but I couldn’t get in the way of the battle, and it looked like we were out of options. Whoever was getting hit by that attack would surely be injured beyond belief. Kangaskhan rushed straight into Caesar and raised a fist. All I could do was outstretch my hand and scream, “No!”

The pressure released from the impact was like a shockwave, causing me to wince from shock and fear. However, when I opened my eyes, I realized that the scene had played out differently than I expected.

Kangaskhan’s attack hadn’t connected with Caesar, but instead was blocked by a trembling Sylvester. He was visibly bloody from the impact, but was keeping the giant’s fist at bay with his own hands. “Heh,” he chuckled. “I made you a promise, remember, Chief? I always keep my promises…”

Caesar and I looked on with shock as Sylvester began to physically push back against Kangaskhan’s Mega Punch. With a roar and a burst of explosive energy, he managed to push away the attack completely and retaliate with his own in an immaculate example of a perfect Counter.

“...because that’s what a REAL hero does!”

An actual shockwave, twice as powerful as the one before, rocked the room as Sylvester’s fist made contact. Kangaskhan’s eyes nearly bugged out of its head as it shot across the room and slammed into the wall behind the Rocket Boss, unable to continue.

As we all stood in disbelief, Sylvester began to glow. It was sudden, but I was getting experienced enough to recognize the light of evolution when I saw it. After the light completely enveloped Sylvester, he quickly began to grow two feet taller and bulked up considerably. His face protruded a bit, becoming almost reptilian. A little set of fangs now became visible as well. As the light faded, a few other changes became noticeable. Dark red, vertical stripes now presented themselves on Sylvester’s arms, almost as if the sudden explosion in growth had torn them open. He had also gained what appeared to be a pair of briefs, held to his waist by an impressive-looking belt. With that, Sylvester’s transformation into a Machoke was complete. He turned back to face us, and immediately grinned. “How about that?” he asked, giving a powerful flex.

Meanwhile, the Rocket Boss returned his Pokemon to their Poke Balls. With a sigh, he spoke up. “I have to admit, you’re pretty good.”

“A deal’s a deal, Boss,” I replied.

“You’ve got me there,” he admitted. “Remember the name, ‘Giovanni.’ This won’t be the last you’ll see of me.”

I was about to tell him about the police squadron that was surely barrelling down on his Hideout, but before I could, the lights were off again. A few seconds later, they came up again, but dimly. Giovanni was gone, and we were alone in the room. As I took a moment to take stock, I began to hear an even louder commotion coming from the upper floors. It seemed the police had finally arrived. I decided that being down here was no longer a good idea, so I quickly returned Caesar and Sylvester and brought out Kai. He still seemed a little drained, but was able to Teleport us back to the closet on the upper floor.

The second we jumped out into the hallway, Darwin and Javelin were waiting for us. They looked a little frazzled and roughed up, but were otherwise alright. I smiled and patted them both on their heads as I returned the rest of the team to their Poke Balls and headed out of the Hideout. We had much to discuss.
[close]

sorry for the delay, a certain game came out and took all my time away

4
Story Telling / Re: Cracked: A Nuzlocke Story
« on: November 07, 2019, 08:30:13 AM »
Update Fourteen: Investigation
Even though I had fallen asleep outside the night before, I felt nice and refreshed when I woke up. The sun was just starting to rise, and I got up slowly. I tried to put my hand on the ground to brace myself, but was shocked to touch fur instead. To my right, I saw Darwin cuddled up next to me. A quick look around told me that the entire team had huddled around me at some point during the night. Even Kai was close by! I smiled and gingerly stepped around all of them to go watch the sunrise.

I found a clearing on a hill nearby that let me get a perfect view of the sun popping up over the mountains in the distance. It was a truly beautiful sight, and definitely refreshing. It made me feel like even though I had been making all kinds of mistakes, it wasn’t the end. The sun still rises every day.

After having a nice moment to myself, I walked back to the team, who were all still dead asleep. After a quick moment of reflection, I decided to have a little fun. I took a deep breath and screamed my best possible war cry. The whole team jolted awake in a panic, ready for battle. Caesar looked around, confused that there was nothing around that posed a threat. The whole team looked at me in bewilderment.

I just laughed. “Good morning, everyone! Hope you had a good night’s sleep! We have a big day ahead of us, so let’s get going!”

Javelin didn’t seem to appreciate the sudden wake-up call, and her eyes were shut again almost immediately. Darwin, on the opposite side of the coin, was up bounding around with all of his ridiculous energy. The others just stood there like zombies, still processing.

After a little bit of time to get everyone bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, we headed back into town. If I got to the Gym early enough this time, perhaps the leader would actually be present and willing to battle me after my appointment was so rudely cancelled. I recalled the team to their Poke Balls as we reached the gates of Celadon and quickly made my way to the Gym.

***

I recognized the Gym Leader, Erika, from the numerous pictures and advertisements for the Pokemon League. Her jet-black hair and brightly colored kimono contrasted themselves perfectly as the morning sun gave her a certain glow. She looked as if she was just leaving the Gym, so I quickly ran up to catch her.

“Hey!” I said, trying to get her attention. “Do you have a minute to take a challenge?” It was probably a little forward, but I really wanted to get done and out of this town as soon as I could.

She seemed distracted, but finally Erika turned to face me. “Sorry,” she said plainly, “you’ll have to make an appointment if you want to challenge me.”

Word from the locals had informed me that Erika could be a bit of a space case, and I was inclined to believe them. “I did make an appointment,” I pointed out. “I showed up yesterday at my scheduled time and you weren’t there.”

She looked puzzled for a moment, then closed her eyes and smiled. “Ah, you must be the Marshal I heard about from Misty and Brock. Sorry I missed your appointment yesterday. I ended up getting volunteered to help the police with an investigation, but we didn’t find anything of value. I was on my way back to take your challenge, but got sidetracked when I found some lovely flowers that I had never seen before.”

I sighed. It seemed rumors were true sometimes, after all. I couldn’t really be upset with her, but I still wanted to get the Gym battle done. “Can we just get it done now, then? You kinda owe me, after all.”

Erika’s smile faded quickly. “I’m sorry, but I’m helping out with the Team Rocket investigation again today. Could you wait for a little while?” She seemed to be lost in thought, but her face quickly lit up again. “Actually, your reputation with the other Gym Leaders has been pretty solid. Do you think you can maybe help me out?”

As much as I just wanted to take my challenge and leave, I couldn’t deny that maybe helping out a Gym Leader would be a good move for my future endeavors. “What do you need?” I asked.

“The Celadon police force hasn’t been very helpful in my efforts,” she admitted. “I think there’s something going on at the Game Corner downtown, but they can’t just waltz in there without a warrant. I may be a Gym Leader, but there’s only so much I can do on my own. If you and I both went in and tried to find something on our own, we could bring the evidence to the police.”

Though she was a bit of an airhead, I had to admit that Erika had come up with a very solid plan. “That seems reasonable to me,” I agreed. “You can count on me!”

“Great!” she grinned. “I’d love to give you your challenge afterwards, even if it’s past the Gym’s hours! You’d really be doing the city of Celadon a service!”

***

The Celadon Game Corner was not really a place for most 13-year-olds, but I still managed to make my way into the building without being removed from the premises. Most of the patrons were too engrossed in their video slot machines to pay me any mind. It was pretty disturbing to watch the small crowd of adults mindlessly putting coins into slots, hoping they would somehow change their fates and strike gold.

As I walked past, one figure turned to look at me. He was wearing a familiar outfit, and right away I knew that he was the man I had spoken to at the Gym the day before when my appointment with Erika was cancelled. “Hey, aren’t you a bit young to be hanging around here?” he asked.

I froze. In that moment, I wasn’t able to come up with a good answer. If I was caught in a place like this by a League Official, that could only spell trouble for my career as a Trainer. As I stammered around the question, Erika popped up behind me and rested a hand on my shoulder.

“He’s with me, Clyde,” she said. There was a sternness in her voice that I was definitely positive hadn’t been there before. “More to the point, though, where are you supposed to be right now?”

Clyde’s face turned beet red immediately. He certainly seemed like he wasn’t expecting Erika to show up. “Miss Erika! I-uh, that is to say, um…”

“Clyde.” Erika quickly removed her hand from my shoulder and stepped in front of me. “Where should you be right now?”

“The...Gym?”

“The Gym, Clyde. Now, if you will kindly leave me to my business and return to the Gym, I won’t fire you on the spot.”

In a flash, the Gym official was gone, and Erika turned back to me with a smile. For someone so laid back, she certainly was capable of being intimidating when she needed to be. “You good to keep going?” she asked, the tone of her voice softening immediately. “You can hang back if you’re scared.”

Looking back, I know exactly why she said what she did, but a younger Marshal couldn’t pick up on the subtleties of her tone, or the slight smirk that crept across her face. There are so many things I wish I could’ve said, but instead, a simple huff and an “I’m not scared!” escaped my lips. I strode toward the back of the casino with a confident stride.

Around the back wall was a dimly lit hallway that didn’t seem to lead anywhere. It was also completely empty, save for one lone person standing in front of a poster hanging on the wall. I quickly got my story straight, and approached.

“Excuse me, sir,” I said, feigning politeness. “I’m looking for the bathroom, can I find it back here?”

The man, obscured by the dim light, seemed shocked that I had made it back to his station. “What’s a brat like you doing here? Get out!”

He stepped closer, and all the color immediately drained from my face. The all black outfit he was wearing should have been my first clue towards danger, but the bright red letter “R” emblazoned on his chest signified that this man was a member of Team Rocket.

I reacted quickly, drawing Caesar’s Poke Ball and summoning the Ivysaur into the enclosed space. I hoped the flash of throwing out a Pokemon wouldn’t alert too many patrons of the Game Corner, but if anybody panicked, Erika could probably calm them down.

Before the Rocket Grunt had a chance to react to what was happening, Caesar let out a cloud of Sleep Powder right in his face. The poor sap was just barely able to reach for the Poke Ball at his belt before he staggered and collapsed in a heap on the floor, fast asleep. Unfortunately for me, however, the narrow walls of the hallway were not exactly optimal for the Sleep Powder to dilute quickly. I felt my eyes began to grow heavy, as the rest of my body began to relax. Just before I fell, though, a small pouch was shoved into my face. The sudden smell of pungent herbs and spices woke me back up in a flash. As I got my bearings again, Erika was looking at me.

“That was a good play, but poor awareness,” she observed. “Luckily, this home-grown herbal blend will help keep you awake and invigorated for what comes next.”

“Thanks,” I smiled. Whatever was in that bag, it worked like a charm. I felt great!

“Now, what was this guy guarding?” Erika wondered, making her way over to the poster on the wall. After a quick investigation, she noticed that it was not hung on the wall properly. She lifted the poster and discovered a big red button. Doing what any sensible human being would do, she pressed it immediately, and the wall at the end of the hallway began to slowly and quietly slide away, revealing a staircase leading underneath the Game Corner.

“There we go!” Erika whooped in a hushed whisper. “This must be the way to some sort of base. We can get the entire Celadon police force on this case in no time.”

“That’s great,” I agreed. “Does this mean we’re done here?”

“Well, I’ve got to get ahold of my police contact as soon as possible, so I can’t exactly stick around,” Erika admitted. “However, we don’t want to leave the scene like this in case this guy wakes up, or if some reinforcements come upstairs. This is the only real evidence we have of underground Rocket activity right now.”

I sighed a bit. As fun as this was, I really was just trying to get my Gym challenge done. “So what do you want me to do?”

“If you could head down there and quietly gather as much information on Team Rocket as you could, that would help a lot,” Erika instructed.

This sounded ridiculously dangerous, and by all rights Erika should have been doing this as the Gym Leader, but with the current situation, I couldn’t leave the investigation unmanned. “I’ll do it, but you owe me BIG time.”

“Of course,” Erika confirmed. She stuck her hand out in a show of good faith, and I took it in a handshake. “Good luck, Marshal.” The two of us turned away from each other and went our separate ways as I delved into the Team Rocket Hideout.
[close]

This was posted on nuzlockeforums.com one week ago, and so will all future updates from here on out.

5
Off-Topic / Re: Made mah day.
« on: November 07, 2019, 08:28:23 AM »
i was a little sad to see how quiet the place has been lately too, but i guess that's the way things go sometimes.

6
Story Telling / Re: Cracked: A Nuzlocke Story
« on: November 04, 2019, 06:13:09 AM »
Ok, this is the last update from when I was writing this 2 years ago. Expect things to slow way down from here.

Update Thirteen: Serenity
A few days had passed since Raymundo had left, but I was still reeling. It wasn’t just me, though. Everyone on the team, even the newcomers, felt like something very important was missing from the family. Raymundo was the best of us, and though I knew he had been going through a lot at the time, I still couldn’t see his reasoning for leaving us so suddenly.

Though it still stung, I had to do my best to carry on with everyone that was left. Since that day, I had been training the team pretty consistently, and the results were very apparent. Darwin had quickly earned his place on the team, being just as strong as a few of the veterans on the squad despite his small stature, but the real success stories were Kai and Sylvester, who had shot up in level and power considerably in the past few days.

Kai’s progress was easily tracked back to one specific event: the opening of the gates to Saffron City. They had managed to open them back up the day after Raymundo left, so the team and I wasted no time in going and seeing the sights. While we were wandering, a strange man noticed my Abra and quickly threw me a Technical Machine. He said it would make Kai much easier to train, and I quickly realized why. The TM was for the move Psychic, a move that Kai wouldn’t normally have learned until much later in his development.

Needless to say, he effortlessly honed this move until completely mastering it. In doing so, he quickly evolved into his next form, Kadabra. This was great, since it meant he’d be able to stay awake for more than six hours a day. He had gotten quite a bit taller, and had found a spoon somewhere that he was carrying around. It was all very exciting.

On the other hand, Sylvester’s growth had taken a lot more work, but was still just as impressive. He hadn’t received any special TM’s, so all we had to work with was the moves he naturally had. He had gotten caught up with the rest of the squad, so I finally felt ready to challenge the Celadon City Gym.

On the way back to town, I strategized with the team. “Ok, everyone, this Gym apparently uses Grass-types. Therefore, Javelin is going to take point here. Since most Grass-types also share a Poison-typing, Kai’s going to be on cleanup duty. The rest of you can take a rest for awhile if you want. I know it’s been a rough couple of days.”

***

The Gym was closed.

I had been preparing for several days, and the second I rolled up to the Gym, the doors were locked! The local Gym guide was standing outside, so I decided to go over and give him a piece of my mind. “Hey, man, I had an appointment to fight Erika today!”

The nerdy-looking guy pushed up his glasses and looked me over, as if attempting to confirm my identity. “Sorry, kiddo,” he said flatly. “Erika’s been asked to help the local police investigate some Team Rocket activity here in town. Why don’t you reschedule tomorrow?”

I could feel the steam rising off the top of my head as I walked away. This was ridiculous. Those Team Rocket thugs managed to constantly get in my way somehow.

***

A little while later, I was in the courtyard in front of the Department store letting the team stretch out and run around when Darwin slowly walked up to me. “Um…Mr. Marshal?” he said, a hint of nervousness in his voice still.

“It’s just Marshal, kiddo,” I said calmly. He had been calling me that since his first day on the team, and I hoped that I’d eventually break him of that habit. “What’s wrong?”

He looked down at the ground, unsure if he even wanted to ask what he was about to ask. “When are you planning to make me evolve?”

I had totally forgotten about this. Evolution for an Eevee was a pretty important event, but some Trainers were never really able to consider the feelings of the Pokemon and when they wanted to evolve into, let alone what they wanted to evolve into. “Well, when are you thinking you’re ready? What do you want to evolve into, anyway? I’ll let you pick.”

The cute little pup’s eyes glistened when he heard that he’d have a say in the matter. “Well, I’ve always wanted to be a Jolteon. And…I think I’m ready!”

My expression felt similar to Darwin’s when I heard his decision. “Well, that’s perfect!” I said, almost becoming giddy. “I’ve always wanted a Jolteon, anyway!” Hearing this made Darwin so happy that he leapt into my arms, and I spun him around like we were dancing. “They sell Thunder Stones at the Celadon Department Store, so let’s go right away!” I quickly called the whole team back and nearly sprinted into the giant Department Store, heading straight for the fourth floor.

***

Not even 30 minutes later, we were back on the outskirts of town. The whole team was in attendance to see Darwin’s evolution. I could hardly contain myself. Growing up, I always loved listening to the Professor talk about Pokemon, and Jolteon was always my favorite. The fact that I didn’t even have to try to convince Darwin was even better! If he didn’t want to be a Jolteon, I would’ve felt horrible.

“All right, let’s see it!” Caesar insisted. “Time for Darwin to evolve!”

I carefully took the Thunder Stone out of my Bag and set it on the ground, not wanting to spoil the moment by having Darwin make contact with it before he was ready. Caesar, Bepis, Javelin, Sylvester, Kai, and myself all stood in a circle around Darwin, the anticipation becoming nearly unbearable. It must have looked like some sort of freaky ritual if anyone else walking nearby had seen us, but we didn’t care.

Darwin shook himself up and walked over to the glowing green stone, stepping on it gingerly with his paw. The transformation came almost immediately. The all-too-familiar flash of light heralded evolution, and before we knew it a spiky yellow Jolteon stood before us, looking himself over curiously. He didn’t say anything, which kind of worried me a bit.

“Well, Darwin,” I said gingerly, “how do you feel?”

Darwin looked up at me curiously, then sparks began to fly from his body. “I feel great! I feel like I could run a mile right now and never stop just keep running and running and running-” Before he even finished his own sentence he took off, disappearing from the circle we had formed around him before most of us even had a chance to blink. He was a little yellow blur streaking around the trees of the forest we were in. None of us could track him until Kai used his Psychic move to stop him, but showed that he was able to control his power by not harming the newly evolved creature.

“Merely a side effect of the sudden increase in power, I’m sure,” he said calmly. “It will pass with time.”

“Hey!” Darwin shouted, kicking and flailing about in the air. “Put me down! I wanna run and run and run and run and run-”

“Well, hopefully he’ll calm down,” Caesar said, a little nervous about the hyperactive monstrosity that we had created.

“He’s just excited,” I assured everyone. “Why don’t we let him run around a bit?”

Kai sighed and lowered his spoon, letting Darwin float gently down to the ground. As soon as the Kadabra’s Psychic hold was released, the Jolteon shot off like a bullet, whooping and hollering his way around the forest. We all tried to follow along, but couldn’t quite keep up. He was like a bolt of lightning streaking across the ground, impossibly fast yet incredibly strong.

I couldn’t help but laugh, but felt silly at the same time. I had been pushing these guys pretty hard lately, all for the sake of reaching the goal as soon as possible, but it really was little moments like this that could bring the whole team together. I just wished that Raymundo was here to see it. “All right, everyone,” I announced. “We’re camping out here tonight!”

The whole team cheered, except for Caesar, who looked a bit concerned. “Are you sure you don’t want to just…go back to the Pokemon Center?”

“Nah, it’s fine!” I assured him, winking. “It’s not every day we get such a rare opportunity, anyway! This forest is close enough to town, but far enough out of the way that people won’t bother us. We just have to make a suitable campsite.”

***

A few hours later, I would hardly call whatever we had made a suitable campsite, but I didn’t really mind. I was just happy to get a little more time to relax. The crisp autumn air felt perfect as I laid on the ground, and for the first time since starting the journey, I felt at peace as I watched the stars.

The whole team was off enjoying their time, too. Kai was off meditating nearby, likely honing his Psychic energy. Sylvester was honing energy of his own by doing lots of push-ups. Darwin was still running around burning off all that energy. I couldn’t believe that he had barely even stopped to eat before going back to his sprinting! Bepis had found a nearby lake and was enjoying some time in the water, while Javelin perched herself on a nearby tree to watch. Even though Bepis was much stronger than her now, she still felt compelled to look after him, which I thought was cute.

Caesar, meanwhile, didn’t seem to have much going on, so he trudged over to me and laid on his belly. “Hey,” he said flatly.

“What’s up, buddy?” I asked. “Couldn’t find any fun camping activities?”

“Star gazing sounded kind of fun right about now,” he replied. The two of us looked up at the sky in silence for a while before he spoke up again. “Hey, have you ever figured out how you’re able to talk to us?”

I thought about it for a moment. I had really taken this gift for granted, but it really seemed to be totally unique. “I still have no idea. Maybe I’ll never know, but I think it’s been such a blessing to get to know you all as well as I can.”

“I couldn’t agree more,” Caesar sighed. “You’re able to take our feelings and wishes into consideration where others can’t. No other trainer would have let Raymundo walk away like he did.”

“What do you think about that, by the way?” I asked. “I haven’t been able to get it out of my head the past few days.”

Caesar was quiet for a while, but finally managed to speak. “I…knew it was coming. While you were off catching Kai, Jav and I got to talk to him for a bit. He was really still trying to come to terms with evolving. He felt like he was obligated to go explain to his clan back on Route 22. I think the Rock Tunnel thing was enough to push him away.”

“I wish he could’ve just told me. We could’ve gone back as a team.” It sounded selfish, even at the time, but maybe it was meant to be. Raymundo had been on the team longer than everyone except Caesar. We had only been together for a few weeks now, but I felt that we had at least gotten to a certain level of trust and respect with each other.

“He knew you were going to try that,” Caesar said. “He told us he didn’t want to burden us all with his problems. This is a journey he’s going to have to make on his own.”

I sighed. “I’m sure he’ll come back once he figures out whatever he needs to do. For now, let’s enjoy the time we have here, eh?”

“Of course, Marshal.”

I fell asleep under the stars that night, feeling at peace.
[close]

7
Story Telling / Re: Cracked: A Nuzlocke Story
« on: November 03, 2019, 06:23:14 AM »
another!

Update Twelve: Whirlwind Tour
I woke up early the next morning, which felt unusual. I had been so used to sleepless nights that I didn’t know what to do with myself now that I felt so rested. I slowly sat up at the edge of the bed and looked around. Caesar was the only one that was able to be out of his Poke Ball anymore, since the rest of the team was getting too big. It made me a little sad to think that the team would have to be cooped up in their Poke Balls more often, but it was a necessary evil.

I went ahead and checked out, and prepared for my expedition through the Rock Tunnel. I was told by some of the locals that the lanterns in the tunnel were mostly out, so visibility was extremely limited. Hopefully this wouldn’t turn into an all-day trip.

Once I checked out and headed outside, I called Raymundo and Javelin out to join Caesar and me. I would’ve let Bepis out, but he wouldn’t be able to fit into the cave entrance. Kai also apparently liked to spend his time awake while the rest of us were sleeping, so he was out of commission for the day.

“Okay, guys,” I said, starting a quick briefing before we went spelunking. “Visibility here is going to be extremely limited, so I’m going to need constant communication from each of you if we’re going to make our way through there.”

Caesar was quick to chime in. “Wouldn’t it make more sense to bring something that can light up the path instead of stumbling around in the dark?”

“Yeah, normally I’d agree,” I assured him, “but I don’t want to disturb any of the wild Pokemon in the caves. I don’t know how long we’re going to be stuck in there, and the last thing we need is for someone to get stuck in a bad situation.” My reasoning was apparently sound enough for Caesar, as he nodded and looked down at the ground. Seeing no further objections from the other two, I led the team into the pitch-black cave.

***

After about an hour of stumbling around through total darkness, I had finally come to the conclusion that maybe waiting for the roadblocks to clear wasn’t such a bad idea. I wasn’t able to gauge the team’s expressions in the silence and darkness, but I assumed they felt similarly.

The few dimly lit lanterns over the signposts were enough to let us know we were heading in the right direction, but the trip quickly turned for the worse when Raymundo accidentally stepped on a sleeping Geodude the wrong way, causing the Rock-type Pokemon to explode.

“Um…oops,” he said, sounding dopier than usual. The brief thought entered my mind that Raymundo was growing into his big, lumbering body a little too well. He had managed to survive a Selfdestruct, a feat that would’ve killed literally anyone else on the team, but we weren’t out of danger yet. Raymundo’s careless step had set off a chain reaction of exploding Geodudes and Graveler all around us.

“We’ve gotta move!” I shouted nervously, making a run for it. The team used the brief flashes of light from the explosions here and there to follow along. It all seemed to be going okay until Raymundo was hit by another explosion, causing him to fall over. He wasn’t dead, at least, but he was struggling to get back on his feet.

“Damn it,” he cursed to himself, trying to muster up the energy to stand. “I can’t get tripped up here!” It was a scary situation, but I stopped momentarily and noticed the attempt at a one-liner that Raymundo had uttered. Was he trying to emulate Gonz? I couldn’t help but wonder, but was stopped when a figure that I couldn’t make out rushed over to the Nidoking’s aid.

“Don’t worry!” it said, with a voice that sounded like it was trying too hard to sound deep and heroic. “You are safe! I will take you out of here!” The figure looked much smaller than Ray, but managed to pick him up and sling him over its shoulder with what appeared to be no issue. This was all very hard to distinguish, with the only source of light being nearby explosions, but before I knew it, I was following Ray’s unmoving body and the mysterious thing carrying him out of Rock Tunnel.

Before I knew it, we were out of there. Caesar, Javelin and I all collapsed to catch our breath as our savior set Ray down gently, which was when I finally
got a good look at him. Our hero that escorted us through the Rock Tunnel was a Machop.

“Thank you,” I wheezed, still winded from the stress. “We were almost done for back there.”

The Machop smirked and gave me a cheesy thumbs-up. “No problem!” he shouted, the bravado nearly unbearable. “As a professional hero, it’s my duty to help those in need!”

I smirked. He was quite the character! “What’s your name, hero?” I asked.

“I am known by many names,” he said. I wasn’t sure if he was serious or not, because that seemed like pretty awful branding for a self-proclaimed hero. “You, however, may call me Sylvester.”

“Well, Sylvester,” I said, standing back up and dusting myself off. “I appreciate your work!”

It was that moment that made him realize that I was able to hold a conversation with him, and he dropped character almost immediately. “Wait, you can hear me?” he asked, his voice suddenly way higher. He almost sounded like a child, which was funny to me.

“Sure can!” I confirmed. Suddenly, I realized that Sylvester was actually the only Pokemon I had encountered in Rock Tunnel that wasn’t currently recovering from exploding. This meant I could add him to the team! I quickly took out a Poke Ball and offered it to him. “As a matter of fact, I’m a fan of your heroics! What do you say to coming with us and becoming the best hero you can possibly be?”

Sylvester’s eyes lit up instantly at this prospect. “Are you kidding me?” he squealed. He quickly realized how he probably sounded compared to before and cleared his throat. “I mean, of course I’d love to help out a struggling citizen! I will accompany you and keep you safe from harm!” Trying his best to hide his clear excitement, Sylvester slapped the button on the Poke Ball with his palm and allowed himself to be captured. That brought our total numbers up to six: Caesar, Raymundo, Bepis, Javelin, Kai, and Sylvester. This was the first time ever that I had managed to keep a full team! It felt pretty good to have a big squad of Pokemon behind me.

Speaking of the rest of the team, I quickly turned to them and checked them for any injuries. Other than Ray, the others appeared to be alright. “You all should take a load off,” I suggested. “I’ll get you guys to the Pokemon Center from here.”

Caesar and Javelin nodded, so I returned them quickly. Raymundo just sighed and grunted. Clearly, this was something I’d have to talk with him about later, but I figured getting him healed up took priority. I stored him back in his Poke Ball and get going on the way to the next town.

***

The next town on the map was Lavender Town. One look at my surroundings told me that this was one place I didn’t want to stay in for very long. The gravesite of Pokemon, Pokemon Tower, loomed over the whole town, giving it a super creepy vibe. What little activity was in the town looked just as lifeless as the badlands of Route 9. People shuffled around with no clear purpose, as though they were zombies. “Screw this,” I muttered, immediately making a beeline to the west.

***

The checkpoint to Saffron City was still closed, so I had to use the east-west Underground Tunnel to go to Celadon City. I managed to avoid fights by hiding my team’s Poke Balls in my Bag and praying that nobody would recognize me as a Trainer. After a few hours of solid walking, I finally found myself standing on the eastern edge of Celadon City. The town was even larger than Vermilion City, with giant emerald skyscrapers lining the paved streets. I quickly spotted the Pokemon Center and gave the team and myself a much-needed rest.

***

A few hours later, I was awoken by the nurse, who told me that my team was good to go. She also made a point to tell me that I was not allowed to sleep in the lobby overnight. A quick glance outside let me know that it was now nighttime. The journey to Celadon was taxing on me, probably compounded by the fact that I was alone.

“Sorry about that,” I apologized to the nurse. “I’ll come up and book a room.”

“No need,” she told me. “I took care of it for you already!” She handed me my Trainer Card along with the team’s Poke Balls, which made me immediately wonder where she got it from.

“Thanks,” I said tentatively. I quickly counted my Poke Balls, but something was wrong. Every time I counted, I came up with seven. The nurse was starting to walk away, so I quickly got her attention. “Hey, excuse me, but there’s an extra Pokemon here that isn’t mine.”

The nurse rushed back to me, but when she saw the Poke Ball I was holding in front of her, she sighed. “Oh, yeah. That poor Pokemon was abandoned here by a Trainer a few days ago. I don’t remember their reasoning for leaving it here, but we’re obviously not a shelter. I was going to take it somewhere and have it released or something, but I must have accidentally gotten it mixed up with your team. Sorry about that!” She tried to grab the ball from me, but I pulled my arm back.

“What kind of Pokemon is it?” I asked, curious.

“An Eevee,” she answered.

I took a quick look at my Pokedex and was shocked to find that it was true. Why would anyone ever abandon an Eevee? Moreover, who would ever consider releasing one? Eevee was an incredibly rare species, and it felt like a shame to just let it slip through my fingers. “Well, if it’s abandoned, you don’t mind if I take it, do you?”

“It’s all the same to me,” the nurse said, a little too flippant for my taste. “However, you do have six Pokemon on your team already. Might be a tough choice for you.”

At some point, I had forgotten that official League teams were capped out at six members. I wasn’t sure who I’d bench for this Eevee, so I told the nurse a lie. “I’ll figure it out,” I said, giving a fake smile. “In the meantime, I’m going to meet my new teammate and go for a walk! Thanks for your help!” She gave me a weird look as I walked out of the Pokemon Center and back out to Route 7.

***

I waited until I didn’t see any other people to bring out everyone. Even Kai was out for the first time since being captured. His eyes were still closed, but he looked around at everyone. I wondered how he was able to see, but chalked it all up to Psychic-type shenanigans.

“Hey, everyone,” I greeted with a smile. “We have a new addition!” Wasting no time to hear reactions, I took out the Eevee’s Poke Ball and threw it out, releasing the little brown creature. He shook himself off, opened his eyes, and looked horrified.

“This isn’t my usual team,” he muttered, and turned around to face me. This really set him off. “Wh-who are you?” he asked.

“Hi there,” I said, trying to be as soothing as possible. “My name’s Marshal, and I’m going to be training you from now on!”

“Where’s Colin?”

That name alone nearly popped a blood vessel in my head. How could I have guessed that he had something to do with this? I never guessed he could’ve been so self-absorbed as to abandon an Eevee. “Colin’s…not coming back,” I said bluntly. “He abandoned you.”

This was the wrong move. Immediately, the Eevee started to cry. Sensing this, Javelin sprang into action, snatching up the poor child and swaddling it with her wings. “There, there,” she soothed. While she did that, though, she also stared daggers into my soul.

“You don’t wanna be with that guy, anyway,” Caesar said, trying to diffuse the situation. “He’s not very nice to his Pokemon.” This didn’t actually help.

While that was going on, I turned to everyone else. “I kind of want to keep him around, but we’re full here. I also want to keep Kai and Sylvester on the team to train them up, so that narrows us down a bit. I know this might be a bit of a tough choice, but-”

“I’ll go.”

I whipped around to find that the source of that sentence was Raymundo. He looked me dead in the eyes with a cold expression, while mine was that of shock.

“Are you serious?” I asked. “There’s no way I’m-”

“I’m leaving, and you can’t stop me.” The conviction in his voice was astounding.

“Why?” I asked. “Where is this coming from?”

“I have some stuff to figure out,” he said. No matter what I tried, I felt like I wasn’t going to get anything else out of him.

I looked at the team, but mostly at Caesar and Bepis, who had been around the longest. They seemed just as confused as I was, but Raymundo’s heart was clearly set. “Alright,” I said tentatively. “If you’re totally certain that you want to leave the team for now, I won’t stop you.”

Without another word, Raymundo turned away from us and started walking away. Not satisfied with that, I cupped my hands around my mouth and shouted to him. “Just know that no matter what, we’re still your family now! You can talk to us about anything, remember?”

I literally saw the tear drop fall from Raymundo’s face as he gave us a thumbs-up with his back turned to us. Before I knew it, he disappeared into the brisk night, leaving the rest of us very confused.
[close]

8
Story Telling / Re: Cracked: A Nuzlocke Story
« on: November 01, 2019, 06:42:43 AM »
Replies
honestly dude, you're a good writer, hope you know that
Thanks man :) means a lot to hear that. The first 13 updates are from two years ago, and I like to think I've even improved a bit since then. We'll see how things shake out.
WOO! Happy birthday and welcome back! It's always great to have another writer around.
Good to be back! I'm probably gonna stick around this story telling board, mostly. I just wanted to share this story in another place.
[close]

Got another one for y'all, three updates until we're caught up!

Update Eleven: Reconciliation
The trip back up north to Cerulean felt much quicker this time. I was mostly in a hurry to get as far away from Vermilion City as possible, but it also didn’t help that the team had been unnaturally quiet. Javelin was still shocked at the death of Gonz, which was understandable. She flew alongside the group at a distance, not making eye contact with any of us. The rest of us were starting to get used to this kind of thing happening, which didn’t give me any comfort, but this was her first time dealing with something like this. It couldn’t have been easy.

Caesar was still visibly upset that I didn’t tell him what was going on with Bepis, but I couldn’t bring myself to tell them about it. Bepis’ Poke Ball had been totally unresponsive to throwing, which I didn’t even think was possible. Since I refused to share Bepis’ incident with Caesar, he remained silent.

Raymundo was similarly silent, but he didn’t seem upset. Ever since he evolved, he continued to check himself out. I supposed suddenly becoming twice your normal size and bipedal would do that to a Pokemon, but there seemed to be something more to it. He seemed worried. I remembered what he had said about his clan back on Route 22. I wondered what it would mean for him if we ever went back.

I kept hoping that Gonz would pop up out of the ground, shout some ridiculous one-liner, and make everything okay, but as we came out of the Underground Tunnel and continued our trek through Cerulean City, it became increasingly apparent that good times would be far off.

***

We got back to Cerulean City, and I realized that I hadn’t caught anything up on Route 24. I had the team stay behind at the Pokemon Center while I walked up the Nugget Bridge, which probably wasn’t smart, but I needed some time to clear my head. I was also going to try to coax Bepis out of his Poke Ball while the rest of them were resting.

There was a small patch of grass near the other side of the bridge, which meant that some Pokemon weren’t far off. Before I went in, though, I stopped at the edge of the water surrounding the bridge and threw Bepis’ Poke Ball out. “Come on out, buddy,” I said as calmly as I could. The Poke Ball sank in the water and then bobbed back up after a few seconds, unopened.

I sighed. I hoped it wouldn’t be like this for very long. “The rest of them are gone,” I told him. “Please, I just want to talk to you.”

After a few more quiet seconds, the ball opened, and Bepis stretched his giant body across the small river. He looked at me with sad eyes, something that I thought would be impossible for a Gyarados to do. “What do you want?” he asked. From the tone of his voice, it sounded like he had been crying.

“I just wanted to see if you were doing okay,” I assured him. “I know the other day was hard on you. It was hard on me, too.

The giant water fish refused to make eye contact with me. “I didn’t mean to kill him,” he said softly.

“I know,” I confirmed. “It’s not like I’m mad at you or anything.”

He finally looked at me, tears welling up in his eyes. “You’re…not?”

“Of course not,” I said, holding my hand out. “You just weren’t really aware of your own strength. That was your first real fight after evolving, so the sudden increase in power would’ve thrown anyone off.

Bepis finally burst into tears and lunged at me. “I’m so sorry!” he blubbered. I brought my hand out to pet my dragon fish and let him cry it out for a few minutes.

After a little bit, we stepped back to look at each other. No matter how much Bepis had changed, he was still the same, lovable little guy I had met on Route 4. Sure, he was a little bigger now, and a lot scarier, but he couldn’t help that. “So, are you okay to join back up with the team?”

He took a moment to think, then looked at me. “I’m not sure yet,” he answered. “I don’t feel like I’d be able to explain myself to them if they asked.” It was a valid point. Caesar wouldn’t stop grilling me about it for some reason, and Arceus only knew what would happen if Bepis was actually out with them. The questioning would be non-stop.

I sighed. “I suppose you’re right. Do you want me to talk to the team for you?” I had kept it from them because it was Bepis’ story to tell, but if he didn’t want to be bothered by it I could step in and mediate.

“That’s up to you,” he said. “I’m just not sure what they’ll think of me if they found out.”

“Bepis, that’s ridiculous,” I said sternly. “We’re a family, like you said. We’ll always be there for each other.”

Bepis looked like he was about to cry again, but then his attention was taken by something else. “Hey, Marshal, look over there!” I followed his gaze to a nearby tree where a lone Abra was fast asleep. This was my first encounter on the Route, and I wasn’t about to let it go to waste! I took an empty Poke Ball out of my Bag and lined up the throw. It was a bit of a distance, but nothing that I couldn’t manage…or so I thought. I chucked the Ball with all my might, but it fell on the ground in front of the Abra with a thud. I was about to start yelling and cursing up a storm until I noticed the Abra’s tail flicking around in its sleep. It accidentally hit the button on the Poke Ball and was captured instantly. Bepis and I stared back at each other, not sure what to make of what had just happened.

“Well,” I shrugged, “it’s not my best work, but it’ll do.”

“Doesn’t Colin have one of those?” Bepis reminded me. “It’d be weird to just start copying his team.”

Bepis was right, but the chance at a Psychic-type Pokemon was so rare that I couldn’t just pass it up. “We’re keeping him,” I declared. “If we don’t find any other good teammates on the way to the next town, he’ll stay on the team.”

With that out of the way, I walked over and picked up the Abra’s Poke Ball while deciding on a name. “I think I’ll go with…Kai.”

I returned to Bepis, who was looking down at the ground. “So, if you don’t mind, I’d like to go back into my Poke Ball for a little bit.”

“I understand,” I said, smiling a bit. “I’ll talk to them before we get to the Rock Tunnel.” With a sigh, I took Bepis’ Poke Ball and returned him to it. With a new capture, and some alone time with my fish, I felt a little better and walked back to the Pokemon Center, hoping to get the team’s spirits back up.

***

Since the world was on an amazing run of messing with my plans, our path to the next town was a ridiculous detour. Due to the sleeping Snorlax east of Vermilion City, we had to go all the way back to Cerulean City and east on Route 9. That would take us to the Rock Tunnel, which sounded awful.

Route 9 itself wasn’t much to look at. According to the locals, there was an abandoned power plant to the southeast that had created a lot of industrial waste, causing mass erosion and killing most of the plant life. The Route had essentially become badlands, which was at the very least a change of scenery compared to the grassy fields and forests of previous areas. The harsher environment was pretty good for training, so the team put themselves together and got some battling done. It didn’t feel like we were making any progress. Raymundo was already plenty strong, Javelin didn’t really do much, and Caesar looked like his heart wasn’t in it.

Remembering what Bepis had said to me, I decided that waiting to tell them was only making morale worse. “Bring it in, guys,” I called out. The team slowly made their way back to me, almost dragging their feet. I sighed. “So, while you guys were getting some rest at the Pokemon Center, I went out and got us another teammate. He’s an Abra, so he’s asleep right now, but I’m hoping to introduce him to you later.” The team didn’t really seem to be paying attention, so I quickly moved on. “I also got to talk to Bepis for a bit.”

The mere mention of his name was enough to perk Caesar up. Javelin’s eyes widened, and Raymundo folded his arms. “Well?” Caesar asked. “Is he okay?”

“He’s doing better, yes,” I confirmed. “He told me to tell you what happened the other day.” So I explained to the team what had happened. How Bepis had accidentally killed Colin’s Raticate. I spared no detail, I laid it on thick. I had to know if their commitment to the team was absolute.

After I had finished my all-too-detailed explanation, the three of them just stared at me in disbelief. “Are you serious?” Caesar asked me, as if he couldn’t believe what he had heard.

“Unfortunately, I am,” I assured him. “That’s why we didn’t finish the tournament, remember? They closed off the top deck to clean up the mess.”

Javelin looked like she was going to be sick, but kept her composure the best she could. “And Bepis...did that by himself?”

I nodded solemnly. “He regrets it immensely. He wasn’t used to his new power.”

Raymundo nodded. “I know how he felt. When I was fighting that Raichu, I had to hold back so I didn’t kill it. Going straight into battle after evolving is just a recipe for disaster.”

Now that they had some perspective on the matter, I had to ask the all-important question. “Bepis wanted me to ask you guys if…you thought any less of him because of this.” The looks that I got from the three of them told me everything I needed to know. With a smile, I took his Poke Ball back out and threw it high into the air. For once, the response was immediate. In an instant, Bepis appeared, floating around in all of his majesty.

“I told them,” I told him.

He looked back at me, shocked, and then looked back at the rest of the team. The wind grew more intense for a moment as everyone stared each other down. Once it died down, though, Raymundo was the first to show his feelings. He clambered over to Bepis and wrapped his arms around him the best he could. It looked a little silly, but the gesture wasn’t lost on any of us. Bepis stopped floating and crashed to the ground, sobbing. Caesar, Javelin, and I piled on, leaving the whole team in a dogpile of emotions and tears. We had gained so much together, but had lost all the same. The five of us finally had a chance to mourn for Gonz, but in that moment, we had become closer than we had ever been before. I knew that with all my heart I would have to do whatever I could to keep these guys with me. If I managed to lose even one of them, I don’t think I could’ve continued.

***

After our little crying session, we decided to double down on training. The entire team was raring to go, and took off after each other with reckless abandon. Caesar and Javelin were having a tough time keeping up with Raymundo and Bepis, so after a while I had them sit out. Raymundo had managed to gain control of his evolved form relatively quickly, but Bepis was still struggling because the surge in power had been so great.

Bepis lunged at Ray, fangs open wide, but Ray managed to stop him by grabbing the sides of his mouth with his arms. The two of them skidded across the badlands and finally came to a stop after Ray managed to dig in his heels. The two of them had gotten much too strong for their surroundings, or so it seemed. Satisfied, I called them both back and had us continue on our way.

Eventually, we reached the easternmost edge of Route 9, which was right on the edge of the ocean. The view was incredible. You could see nothing but water for miles. The five of us stopped to appreciate how far we had come before finally spotting the Pokemon Center a little way down the trail.

“Finally!” I shouted, getting sick of walking. “Let’s stop there for the night!” The team cheered, and I led them all into the Pokemon Center, where we got our first decent night’s rest in a long time.
[close]

9
Story Telling / Re: Cracked: A Nuzlocke Story
« on: October 31, 2019, 07:57:34 PM »
it's my birthday y'all

have an update on me

Update Ten: Power Surge
I wasn’t sure where I was. The scenery surrounding me was blurry and didn’t adhere to any particular form. The only thing that was clear as day was Bepis towering in front of me, an awful look on his face. “Why did you rush me?” he asked, but his voice was heavily distorted.

“I didn’t mean to-” I started to say, but I couldn’t bring myself to say anything. Bepis had worked hard to get where he was, but now that he was so strong, he didn’t know what to do with himself. That had to be awful, and I couldn’t bear to think about what he was going through while he trapped himself in his Poke Ball.

“I just wanted you to be…proud,” he said, his voice breaking and distorting. Everything went black in that moment, but a few seconds later, Bepis’ giant mouth came up and swallowed me.

***

I awoke with a scream. I jumped out of the bed and looked around, finding myself still safe in the Vermilion City Pokemon Center. My heart was racing and my breaths felt labored as I opened the window. The sun was just starting to rise.

So, it was coming to nightmares now. I knew the path to becoming a Champion wasn’t easy, but this really was starting to get tough. I gathered my things and walked out the door without even sending any of the team out from their Poke Balls.

I finally checked out of the Pokemon Center after several days. After today’s Gym Battle, I couldn’t get out of this city fast enough. As I walked out through the revolving door, I took a moment to appreciate the breathtaking morning view of the city. It seemed like nobody was outside yet, so it was quiet and peaceful. The market was totally empty, and the beach was completely clear. The S.S. Anne was nowhere to be seen, which was fine by me. I wanted to shove the memories of that ship all the way back to the deepest corner of my mind, never to be seen again.

With a yawn and a sigh for good measure, I made the quiet trek to the Gym.

***

Vermilion City was beautiful, truly it was. The Vermilion Gym, however, was not. It was…rather gaudy, to say the least. The building itself was a bright blue, with weird lightning bolt patterns streaking across the walls. It looked so out of place compared to the rest of the city.

I took a deep breath, and grabbed the team’s Poke Balls out of my Bag. After kind of…dumping them out on the ground, the whole team came out. Well, almost all of the team. Bepis’ Poke Ball didn’t activate. He must have been having it really rough.

Caesar, Ray, Javelin, and Gonz all shook themselves awake and looked up at me. Caesar, ever observant, looked around and didn’t see Bepis. “Where’s Bepis?” he asked immediately.

I looked down at the ground, avoiding eye contact with the rest of the team. I tried to speak up, but words failed me. The expressions on the team changed from confusion to shock.

“No way,” Raymundo said quietly. “There’s no way Bepis is…dead?”

“No…he’s not dead,” I confirmed slowly as I walked over and picked his Poke Ball up. “He’s just…taking some time to process.”

“Process what?” Javelin asked, as if she knew I was purposefully keeping something from them.

I couldn’t deal with this right now. I was barely keeping up enough energy to strategize for the Gym Battle. “We’ll talk about this later. Right now, I want to talk about our strategy for this fight. This guy apparently uses Electric-types, so Javelin and Bepis are on the bench. Caesar, Raymundo, you’re going to act as backup. Gonz, you’re taking the main stage. Electric types can’t touch you, after all. You up to this?”

Gonz looked at the team, and then back to me. He looked to be thinking for a moment before he said. “I guess we’re going to give them…a real shock.”

We all stood in silence before laughing like a bunch of madmen. Even Javelin had a smile on her beak, as weird as that sounds. With that out of the way, we all walked inside.

The inside of the Gym was just as out of place as the inside. It literally looked like it was still under construction. Other than the regulation arena, which was pristine, the surroundings looked like the inside of a garage or workshop.

On the other side of the arena, a familiar figure awaited me. The blonde guy that had made it to the finals of the tournament on the ship yesterday was none other than Lt. Surge, the Gym Leader. He towered over me, his intimidating presence already making me nervous. Adding to this, he was pretty ripped, which is green tank top made obvious.

“Ah, it’s you,” he said calmly. “The kid from the tournament with the ridiculously strong Gyarados.”

“That’s…me,” I confirmed. This guy probably had a terrible opinion of me after what I had done to Colin’s Raticate last night.

“Don’t beat yourself up about what happened,” he said, throwing me off guard. “These things tend to happen in this line of work. I’ve seen more than enough of that in my day. Things were a lot rougher in the war.”

The…war? I didn’t remember anything about a war. This guy looked too young to have participated in a war since I had been alive. “Can we just get this done?” I asked. “I’d kind of like to be out of here as soon as possible.”

Lt. Surge sighed. “Have it your way, kid.” Without another word, he threw out a Poke Ball, revealing another Poke Ball. A quick check of the Pokedex told me that it was actually Voltorb, an Electric-type Pokemon.

“Go on, Gonz!” I called, pointing forward. The Diglett came out quickly, already lodged in the ground. Lt. Surge didn’t look worried in the slightest.

“Go for it, Gonz!” I ordered. Knowing what to do immediately, Gonz burrowed under the floor.

Voltorb rolled around a bunch, but didn’t know where to go or what to do. Lt. Surge seemed similarly lost. I don’t think he expected us to act so quickly. After a few seconds, I could hear Gonz yelling something as he began to emerge from the ground. “Can…you…DIG IT?!” the mole shouted as he popped into view underneath Voltorb. The ball-shaped creature went flying out of the arena and slammed into the nearby wall.

I nearly screamed with excitement. Caesar, Ray, and even Javelin whooped rowdily. Gonz always made everything seem so much cooler with those fun little quips of his. Even though the first battle of the match was over so quickly, it felt more…exhilarating.

“Not bad, kid,” Surge admitted, “but kids like you come in with those stupid little moles all the time. If you think I don’t have a way around them, you’re terribly mistaken. Magnemite!” The good lieutenant’s second Pokemon, a strange looking ball with screws and magnets sticking out of it, floated out over the field. This created a bit of a problem for Gonz, since he wouldn’t be able to attack a floating opponent. Still, I was sure that I could come up with something. Magnemite wouldn’t be able to do much to harm him, anyway.

While I was lost in strategizing, Surge wasted no time. “Sonic Boom!” In an instant, Magnemite spun its magnets at amazing speeds, causing a burst of wind to shoot straight for Gonz. The little guy wasn’t able to get out of the way in time, and took the force of the attack head-on.

“Hey, chief, I’m not sure how many of those I can take,” he said to me, his voice showing the slightest hint of wavering. “You have a plan yet?”

I snapped back to reality, my plan in place. “I think I’ve got it!” I confirmed. “Use Sand Attack!” Gonz was quick to act, tunneling around at high speeds and kicking up clouds of dust all over the place. A few seconds passed, then my plan finally came together. The dust of the arena floor interfered with Magnemite’s ability to float, and it fell to the ground.

“No way!” Surge shouted.

“Now, finish it up with Dig!” Gonz was quick to act, and popped up underneath Magnemite and finished it with a single, decisive blow. That was two Pokemon down, and just one more left!

Lt. Surge returned the Magnemite to its Poke Ball and sighed. “That was pretty resourceful. The floor of this arena is made with some special materials that increase the polarity of magnets. It normally helps Magnemite float around faster, but throwing it around the air like that scrambled the poor thing. Very smart, kid!”

“Thanks!” I said, smiling a bit. This was Gonz’s big debut, and the two of us were doing so well! Though, he seemed to be unusually quiet. He had a pretty good one-liner earlier, but it felt like something was up. He was probably trying to focus.

“This is my last Pokemon,” he stated. “Not many kids get past this one! Come on out, Raichu!” Surge chucked the Ball with full-force, summoning the evolved form of Pikachu. Compared to Gonz, this one was larger than life.

“Marshal,” Caesar said quietly, “I think Gonz might be in a bit of trouble, here.” He was right, but I wasn’t sure what else to do. This Raichu couldn’t have had many moves that could do much to Gonz, anyway, so I decided to pass it off.

“Gonz, you still good?” I asked.

“I think I can carry on,” Gonz confirmed. “I’m not fried, yet!” Jokes aside, this fight would decide everything.

“Dig!” I ordered. “Get the drop on him!” Gonz was under the ground before I even finished talking.

“Get ready, Raichu!” Surge cautioned. Raichu took a fighting stance and waited for Gonz.

“What are they doing?” Raymundo wondered. “They can’t have any moves to finish this off!”

We would be shown how wrong we were the instant Gonz started to pop out of the ground. “Now, Mega Punch!” Raichu backed up slightly as Gonz started to pop up, and the mouse’s fist began to glow white. The team could only watch as Gonz was forced back into the ground by a powerful fist. I could swear I saw the poor guy squish like an accordion in his final moments.

A moment passed. Then another. “…Gonz?”

There was no answer. No clever one-liner. Just like that, in an instant, it was all over for Gonz. I quickly fumbled around for his Poke Ball, but when I finally got it in my hand, I saw the crack on the button.

The team looked on, shocked. Caesar and Javelin were totally stunned and couldn’t even speak, much less move. However, Raymundo stepped forward. He told me later that he didn’t even realize what he was doing until after the fact; his body just started moving on its own.

“Marshal, the stone.”

I was still trying to process the fact that Gonz was dead when Raymundo’s words snapped me back to attention. “Wh-what?”

“The Moon Stone, Marshal! Give it to me, now!”

“Oh, r-right.” I rifled through the Bag quickly and found the rough, black stone. Surge looked on with curiosity as I threw the stone out to Ray. The Nidorino sighed and looked down at it for a moment before closing his eyes and stomping on the stone, breaking it. I wasn’t sure what that would do, but it apparently managed to trigger Raymundo’s evolution. The familiar light flooded the arena as I watched my first captured teammate morph into his final form.

Once it was over, Ray was standing on two legs, and now was twice the size of Raichu, and probably came up to my shoulders. He also looked pretty bulky, which was good. Strong and durable was what we needed at this point. The transformation had barely finished before Ray was charging straight at Raichu. I could feel the ground shake when he ran.

“Thunderbolt!” Surge shouted out in a desperate attempt to keep the Nidoking at bay. Unfortunately, he had miscalculated. As Raichu shot lighting from its whole body, the attack had no effect on Raymundo, who now sported a Ground typing. His charge didn’t let up, and before I even had a chance to utter a move, Ray grabbed Raichu with his giant arms. He slammed the poor mouse to the ground and gave it a quick Body Slam, ending the fight instantly.

Everything had happened so fast that I still wasn’t entirely sure what had happened. There was no way Gonz could have died that quickly! He didn’t even get to say a cool one-liner before he died. I was still so shocked that I didn’t noticed Raymundo come back over to me.

“Hey, bro,” he said, quietly. “You alright?”

I snapped back to reality again, having lost my focus for a second time. “I’m…not sure,” I admitted, but then another thought came to me. “You…evolved,” I said, stating the obvious. “That’s a good look for you!”

“We’ll talk about this later,” he said, clearly not happy with something.

Everything felt like it was going wrong again. First, Bepis had decided to quarantine himself in his Poke Ball, and now Gonz was killed in a battle that should’ve been so easy for us. I felt like I had barely gotten to spend any time with him before he was so quickly taken away.

Lt. Surge came up to me, star-shaped Thunder Badge in hand. “That was quite a match,” he admitted. “I’m sorry for your loss, kid. You seem to know the drill though. This is the life we both chose, you and me.”

The team looked at me, expecting some sort of response, but instead I just accepted the Badge and turned to leave. What else was there to say?

***

The rest of the Gym staff had assured me that they would take care of Gonz’s remains and bury them near the cave he was found in. I figured it was for the best. I couldn’t bear to see him beaten down like he had been.

It was early afternoon as I made my way out of Vermilion City. Caesar, Javelin, and Raymundo were close behind. We were told that the gate past Route 11 was being blocked by a sleeping Snorlax, so we had to make a huge detour to get to our next destination.

After a long period of deafening silence, I couldn’t take it anymore and turned to Ray. “Something’s been bothering me,” I told him. “Why were you so hesitant to use the Moon Stone before? You always struck me as the type who wanted to be constantly improving.”

Raymundo sighed. “On Route 22, where you found me, there is a big clan of Nidoran, both male and female. At any given time, there only exists one Nidoking and Nidoqueen. These two watch over all the younger members and protect them. For some reason, I thought that using the Stone would be a disgrace to my people. To my culture.”

That was a good enough reason for me. “But then, why did you do it?” I pressed.

“I realized that even though Route 22 is my home, you guys are my family now,” he said. Those words sounded familiar to me, because I remembered Bepis saying something similar to that just a few days ago.

“I see,” I said, looking down at the ground. “I never knew.”

“Well, now that we’re being honest with each other,” Caesar said, changing the subject, “can you finally tell us what the hell is going on with Bepis?”

“It’s not my story to tell,” I said firmly. “When he decides he’s ready to come back out, he’ll tell you all himself. For now, we’re going back to Cerulean City.” With morale at a low point, we left Vermilion City worse off than when we came.
[close]

10
Story Telling / Re: Cracked: A Nuzlocke Story
« on: October 30, 2019, 09:07:57 AM »
I was literally just thinking about this the other day
maybe a week ago?
Funny, that's about when it popped back into my head, too I think.

Anyway, I still have a bit of a backlog of these while I'm writing the next one for the Nuzlocke Forums. Gonna try to space updates a few days apart to give myself a buffer like I had planned previously. Here's another chapter in the meantime!

Update Nine: There Will Be Blood
The strange gift that Bill had given me before ended up being a ticket to board the S.S. Anne for a party while it docked in Vermilion Harbor. I wasn’t sure how I felt about a party like that, but he had given me the ticket and it seemed like a good way to enjoy our short vacation, so I boarded the ship. Unfortunately, the rest of the team was confined to their Poke Balls, since I wasn’t allowed to have them roaming freely. It was probably for the best, so I didn’t slip and actually talk to the team around other people.

On the other hand, this meant I actually had to show up and be sociable to people in public. That day was probably the greatest challenge of my Trainer career. Instead of getting stuck on the fiesta deck talking to people that I had never met, I decided to walk around the whole ship. A few of the guests were keeping themselves shut up in their cabins, which was a lifestyle I could really get behind. These guys were my kind of people!

However, a lot of them were Trainers, which usually meant that they wanted to fight. Using bigger Pokemon like Bepis was completely out of the question, so I let Javelin and Gonz in to get that last push so they could catch up with Caesar and the others.

The team was pretty quiet, which felt weird, but there were too many people around. Caesar kept making eye contact with me as if he wanted to say something, but stopped himself every time.

After checking all of the rooms and battling the occupants for some sweet loot, I made my way to the top deck, several floors above the party that was still taking place. To nobody’s surprise, I found a bunch of Trainers battling in what appeared to be a small tournament. Nobody looked especially tough, but one face in the crowd made my nose scrunch up in annoyance. There, in the middle of winning a battle with his prized Charmeleon, was Colin.

Of course he was here. The grandson of Professor Oak always got to do stuff like this. The only reason I was even here was because Bill didn’t feel like going, but he always seemed to have the world on a string compared to me.

“Colin Oak advances to the second round!” some lady on the other side of the deck screeched into a microphone. Next to her stood a man dressed in some gaudy sailor garb. I assumed that this guy was the Captain. He looked over all the surrounding Trainers and smiled a bit.

“Yeah!” Colin shrieked, pumping his fist as he returned Charmeleon to its Poke Ball. “I’ll take every one of you on!” He seemed incredibly cocky, but at the end of the day that Charmeleon was probably his best Pokemon, and I was pretty confident that literally any member of my team could’ve taken it down with no issue at that point.

That was my cue to look cool. I gently shoved my way through the small crowd that had gathered and approached the little shit. “You sure about that, short stack?” I asked. “You remember how last time went, don’t you?”

Colin looked shocked for a moment. “M-Marshal? How did you even get here? You couldn’t have been invited!”

I picked my ticket from my pocket and waved it in front of his face. “Think again, pal! I made pretty good friends with that Bill guy, apparently.”

I looked over at the Captain and the announcer. “Hey, is it too late to enter?” I asked.

The two of them looked at me in disbelief. After a split second of deliberation between the two of them, the lady in the ridiculously gaudy dress spoke up. “Well, we’re still in the first round, and we’re sitting at an odd number right now, so if you want to join that’d be great!”

I grinned, knowing how this would end before it even began. “I’ll do it.” I walked up to the desk and gave them my info, and just like that I was in the tournament. I sat on the sidelines and waited for my turn, occasionally stealing glances at Colin, who looked like he was getting more and more nervous by the second.

***

A few hours later, the tournament had progressed to its final stages. The contestants, aside from me, Colin, and some blonde guy who looked familiar to me, were all random sailors they had thrown into the game and a few of the kids of some of the parents that were here. None of the opponents that I faced were difficult to beat, and Colin had advanced to the semifinals. If Colin could beat these guys, I could definitely beat them, too!

The time came for the two of us to finally have our battle. Colin had a smug expression on his face, but it still didn’t intimidate me. After all, I had embarrassed this kid in Cerulean City just a couple days ago, and the team was way stronger than that battle!

“All right, it’s the second match of the semifinals!” the announcer lady said, starting to lose energy from commentating all day. “We’ve got our latecomer, Marshal, versus the favorite thus far, Colin Oak!”

The crowd, which had been smaller when I arrived, was now comprised of about half the occupants of the ship. They were going nuts as the two of us took our place on the arena floor.

“You ready to get destroyed again?” I shouted over to Colin, trying to intimidate him. “Look out, my Magikarp might take out more than just your Abra this time!”

If I could see all the way over to Colin, I’d imagine veins popping out on his forehead. “Things are going to be way different this time, loser!” He got a Poke Ball ready, and I did the same. This was a double-blind pick, meaning that neither of us would know what the other was sending out.

“Semi-final match, begin!”

The lady’s words caught us both off-guard. Nerves were definitely getting to us, but we sent out our Pokemon and allowed the battle to begin. Colin started off with his Pidgeotto, and I led with Raymundo. I made a mental note that he had actually started with Pidgeotto in our last fight, as well, and saved that for future reference.

“Quick Attack!” Colin ordered, wasting no time. The bird shot through the air at a ridiculous speed, charging straight at Ray. I was still trying to formulate a plan, so I wasn’t able to give him an order in time, and he got tackled.

“Ray, use Body Slam!” I shouted, having him use his new move that I had taught to him using a TM we found on the ship. Pidgeotto was stopped right in front of Raymundo and couldn’t get it out of the way of the Nidorino’s heavy body slamming right into him. I could see the sneer on Ray’s face as he relaxed himself on top of the poor creature, not allowing it to move. Pidgeotto struggled, trying to lift off with his powerful wings, but Ray was just too heavy.

“Now, Horn Attack!” I shouted, hoping to end this as quickly as possible. Raymundo instantly complied, probably because he was already planning to do that. He brought his head down horn-first on the grounded bird, damaging it enough to finish it off.

“Pidgeotto is unable to battle!” the announcer announced. “Nidorino wins! What a great maneuver by Marshal North!” The crowd erupted with cheers as Colin put his Pokemon back in the Ball.

“This isn’t over by a long shot!” Colin spat, forcefully grabbing another Poke Ball. “Kadabra!” Out popped the evolved Psychic Pokemon after a flash of light. I quickly returned Ray to his Poke Ball, not wanting to deal with that at all.

“Go, Javelin!” I called out, sending out a bird of my own. She wasn’t as strong as the boys of the team, but she was still more than capable of taking care of business here. The Spearow came out of the Poke Ball, already soaring in the air straight for Kadabra.

“Teleport!” Colin ordered. Before Javelin could close in, Kadabra disappeared from sight and behind Javelin.

“Behind you!” I cried with worry, but I had no reason to fear. Before I could even get another word in, Javelin had already whipped around and slammed her tiny body into Kadabra at full force. She had managed to predict where the opponent was going before I even registered what was going on! Sometimes I wondered if I was really needed in the whole equation with teammates as smart as these guys.

“Confusion!” screamed the obnoxious boy. “Get her!” Kadabra pointed its spoon at Javelin and began to glow with a blue outline. Javelin was immediately stopped in her tracks and lifted into the air. I was starting to get extremely concerned. I had always heard that Psychic Pokemon were incredibly powerful, but this was starting to get concerning. What could you do against an opponent that was able to stop you in your tracks with no effort?

“Javelin!” I cracked, words getting caught up in my throat. I couldn’t lose another bird so soon. Javelin opened one eye through the pain and made eye contact with me. She closed her eye and looked to be concentrating. After a moment, her whole body trembled. While still under the effects of Confusion, her entire body began to glow with a brilliant light. The entire crowd was forced to cover their eyes for a moment, but when it all faded away, they saw that Javelin had nearly tripled in size and wingspan. Her beak was also much longer, her wings were now the same shade of brown as her body, and she had gained a beautiful crown of red feathers on her head. Javelin was now a Fearow.

Through what could only be explained as sheer force of will, Javelin broke through the powerful attack and streaked through the air, slamming into Kadabra with her powerful beak once more and knocking it out. Everyone was dumbfounded, myself included. Breaking out of a Psychic-type Pokemon’s attack meant that you had a stronger will and mental fortitude than the attacker itself. Javelin’s desire to keep me from freaking out allowed her not only to break through a Confusion, but also evolve!

“Kadabra was unable to battle!” the announcer said, her energy suddenly back. “Fearow takes it!”

I cheered as Javelin made her way back over to me and attempted to perch on my head. It was a little more difficult, now that she was so much bigger, but I was sure we could make it work. “You did great,” I whispered to her. “Congratulations on evolving!”

“Thanks!” she whispered back, bringing her neck down and letting me scratch her. I took out a Poke Ball and returned her.

Colin was starting to get visibly upset. His precious Psychic-type had failed him twice in a row, now. Without a word, he sent out his Charmeleon, the strongest Pokemon he currently owned.

I smirked and grabbed Bepis’ Poke Ball, answering Colin’s silence with my own. The giant Gyarados popped out, giving a ferocious roar that startled everyone, myself included. I still wasn’t used to my cute little fish being a gigantic dragon monster.

“Let’s wrap this fast!” I suggested to Bepis, who looked extremely excited to be out of the Ball and seeing some action. He had really blossomed since evolving! “Use Dragon Rage!” Bepis opened his mouth wide, and a huge ball of purple energy formed. Before Charmeleon even had a chance to counter or dodge, the ball of energy screamed straight at it, exploding upon contact.

Colin’s starter wasn’t out of it, though. “Scratch!” the Trainer squeaked out, but it was clear that Charmeleon was already in the process of doing that as he shot through the smoke cloud and slashed at Bepis with its sharp claws. It almost seemed like he didn’t feel the need to listen to Colin. However, the attack didn’t do much to Bepis, who simply shrugged it off and flopped onto the Fire-type, crushing him and knocking him out.

“Charmeleon is unable to battle!” the announcer said, still recovering from the previous fight. “Gyarados wins! Colin Oak is on his last Pokemon, and it seems that Marshal’s team is relatively untouched! What will he do?”

Colin glared at the lady, showing a small sign of immaturity. He returned Charmeleon to its Poke Ball and immediately threw out his last Pokemon, Raticate. It seemed his team was growing pretty quickly, too.

I made the decision to keep Bepis in, since he was clearly itching for a fight. He wasn’t used to being the more powerful Pokemon in any situation, so this was a great confidence builder for him. I could tell he was full of nervous energy, but most of it was excitement.

“Hyper Fang!” Colin ordered quickly. Raticate was extremely fast, bounding over to Bepis and sinking its huge fangs into the dragon. Bepis roared in pain, which worried me. He was plenty strong; I couldn’t believe that one attack from a Raticate would be able to hurt him like that.

“Bite!” I retorted nervously. If they wanted to play that game, we certainly would! Bepis coiled his way around Raticate, trapping it, then sunk his head in and chomped down.

The next moments will forever be burned into my mind. It felt like time had slowed to a crawl. A horrifying crunch sound reverberated through the deck, causing the whole crowd to gasp. Bepis reflexively uncoiled himself at the noise to reveal Colin’s Raticate lying on the ground. Its feet were twitching reflexively, and a scarf of blood had appeared around its neck.

My vision tunneled, something that felt familiar to me. I looked over at Bepis, who looked just as mortified as anyone else on the deck, and then I looked over at Colin. I don’t think he had even registered what was going on yet. His eyes were incredibly wide with shock, and his mouth started to slowly open to scream. “Raticate!” he cried. “Raticate, get up!”

The announcer didn’t even know how to call this one. “R-raticate is…unable to battle. Bepis wins. The victory goes to…Marshal.”

The crowd, which would typically have gone crazy at this point, was totally silent. Nobody knew what to do. Colin kept trying to return Raticate to its Poke Ball, but it didn’t work. Poke Balls weren’t made to hold corpses. Just like it had with Orwell and Hichan, the button on the Ball cracked after a few final attempts, making it completely useless.

Bepis turned around and looked at me, unsure of what to do. “Put me in the Ball,” he said, quickly and quietly.

“W-what?” I stammered.

“PUT ME IN THE BALL, MARSHAL!”

I jumped in fear and brought the Poke Ball up to return Bepis. He was quickly gone in a flash of red light.

After an uncomfortable amount of time, the Captain took the mic from the announcer finally spoke up. “Everyone, this tournament is over,” he announced with a gruff tone in his voice. “At this time, I’d like everyone to leave the deck and go back downstairs. If you aren’t staying with us for the voyage, you need to disembark immediately.”

***

A little while later, I was watching the S.S. Anne sail off into the horizon. The sunset gave everything a tint befitting the name of the city. I was still completely numb; still processing what had happened during the match with Colin. I knew Bepis had gotten stronger, and the team as a whole was so happy for him, but his eagerness to prove his worth on the team had gotten the better of him. He got carried away, and now Colin’s Raticate was dead.

I was no stranger to death at this point in the journey, but I had never been on the opposite end. Did people actually get enjoyment out of this? The very thought made me sick to my stomach. I never wanted to do that to another person’s Pokemon again.

Out of the corner of my eye, I saw Colin staring down the beach at the departing ship. I walked over to him. “Hey, man, I-”

“Go away.”

None of the typical smugness could be found in his tone. It was cold, dripping with hatred.

“Colin, I didn’t mean to-” I went to put my hand on his shoulder, but I was met with a punch straight to the face. It wasn’t that strong, but it still caught me off-guard and knocked me on my ass.

“Leave me alone!” he shouted. “You’re a murderer! You and your freaky Gyarados!” He wasted no time in running off, leaving me stunned on the beach with my butt in the sand. There were so many things I could’ve said then, maybe brought him back down to Earth, but his image of the world was being shattered so quickly at a young age that I’m sure he needed a lot of time to come to terms with what had happened. With a heaviness in my heart, I slowly got up and headed back to the Pokemon Center. Tomorrow was my Gym Battle, and I would have to find some way to get my composure back.
[close]

11
Story Telling / Re: Cracked: A Nuzlocke Story
« on: October 28, 2019, 04:43:09 AM »
*taps microphone* ...is this thing still on?

Anyway, I thought this was lost when my old laptop broke, but I found backups on an external hard drive so I'm working on this one again. Here's an update!

Update Eight: Evolution
The next few days were pretty uneventful. The team and I decided to take it easy for a while, so we took in all the sights that Vermilion City had to offer. The seaside market had a lot of cool stuff to eat for both people and Pokemon, so we spent a day eating like kings…or at least some very well-fed sailors.

We also spent part of the day relaxing on the beach. Bepis took off into the ocean and would come back every so often to relax. Javelin spent her time lazily flying around keeping track of the Magikarp. It seemed like she was very interested in taking care of the boys on the team, which was great. Keeping all of these idiots in line was enough to drive me crazy.

Raymundo and Gonz were off building sand castles and practicing their one-liners. Gonz was such a natural at it, and while it had felt a bit annoying to start, it was quickly growing on me. He had quite the personality. Raymundo was trying his best, but just couldn’t nail the delivery like Gonz could.

Finally, Caesar was lying next to me underneath the umbrella we had rented. He seemed content to just be beside me, which I thought was super cute. He sure knew how to make me feel safe. I looked around the beach and noticed that there were tons of people out and about, but no Pokemon. On the entire beach, I was the only Trainer who had let their Pokemon out to enjoy the day at the beach.

“Why do you think nobody else lets their Pokemon out?” I whispered to Caesar. “It’s such a beautiful day, I’d think someone would at least let their Rattata out or something.”

“It’s probably because the general attitude towards Pokemon around here isn’t like your view of us,” Caesar explained. “The Professor always lamented that fact to his colleagues. A lot of people from Kanto view us Pokemon as nothing more than tools for battle or profit. They don’t know that we’re all individuals with our own personalities and goals, just like them.”

Well, that was a lot deeper than I was ready to expect. “Is it like that everywhere?” I wondered.

“Beats the hell outta me,” he answered, “but I’m just glad that I got a Trainer that actually understands me, unlike that Colin kid. Poor Charmander…”

“Were you guys good friends in the Lab?” I asked. “It seems like you’d have to be.”

“Not really,” he admitted. “I had seen several Charmanders and Squirtles leave the Lab before you ever showed up. Doesn’t mean I can’t feel bad for him.”

“I guess.” Man, the political climate of Kanto seemed to even affect the Pokemon here. Something would have to change. I decided that continuing that line of questioning with Caesar was just going to bum us both out, so I dropped it and let us both relax on the beach for the rest of the day.

***

The next morning greeted me bright and early, which I had already planned for. I was planning to challenge the Gym the day after tomorrow, so I was going to dedicate today to training. I left the team in their Poke Balls and made my way to Route 11, where we’d be wrapping up our prep training for Lt. Surge’s Gym.

The sun had barely risen when I summoned the team from their capsules. They all looked a little groggy, but that would wear off quickly. “Ok, team!” I shouted at the top of my lungs. “We’ve got a big day of training ahead of us, and I mean big! The Gym Challenge is in two days, and tomorrow we’re going to a party on a cruise ship that’s coming into town, so we have to get this all done today!”

Raymundo mumbled something unintelligible. Caesar stared at him, squinty-eyed from adjusting to the light of the rising sun, then looked back at me. “Yeah, I understood none of that,” he told me, assuring that I wasn’t the only one that was confused.

Javelin and Bepis woke up quickly, and seemed fired up. Unbeknownst to me at the time, Bepis had taken our time on the beach to go out and seek training from other Water types. Javelin kept track of him as he did so, which was a nice gesture from the newcomer. He looked a lot more confident, at the very least, and didn’t flop around nervously like he used to.

Gonz just stared at me with his usual aloof expression. I felt like it was literally impossible to get a read on this guy. That cool guy persona had to be an act, somehow. I wondered if we would ever get to see a different side of Gonz, or if he was actually just like that all the time.

“Sure, it’s a little early,” I admitted, still a bit tired as well, “but we have a lot of work to do! Now, let’s get cracking!”

***

The next few hours were exhausting for everyone involved. I kept track of everyone as they battled, and things seemed to be going well! Caesar and Ray had pulled pretty far ahead of the pack, and the others had made some good progress as well.

“Nice work, guys,” I said, feeling a bit short of breath. Keeping up with the five of them was taxing on me, too! It seemed that I’d have to do some more training of my own to match up with the team. “We’re almost done for the day.”

“Marshal, I’m exhausted,” Caesar panted. “We really should get back to town.”

“I’m pretty beat, too,” Ray added. “I’m not sure I can take another step!”

“Then you’re ripe for the picking!” said an unfamiliar voice nearby. We were quickly set upon by a strange man in a black trench coat. He wore sunglasses and a black hat, as well, so there was no way to identify him. “Battle with me!”

I honestly did not expect it to go that way. Unfortunately, the team was in no position to be battling other Trainers. “I really need to get going,” I said, trying to avoid eye contact. “My team has been working hard all day, and I need to give them a break.”

“That sounds like it’s not my problem,” said the voice that was trying too hard to sound deep. Before I realized what was happening, he sent out two Pokemon, Ekans and Drowzee. “Now, go!” he shouted. The two Pokemon charged straight for Caesar and Raymundo, set to kill.

Time felt like it slowed down in that moment. The two of them were both extremely weak at the moment, so any attacks from these Pokemon would be enough to kill either of them. I couldn’t move, my body was completely paralyzed. I could only watch as Caesar and Raymundo stared their deaths in the face.

Though, in that moment, a shining beacon of hope appeared. Of all the Pokemon to get up and stand in the way, Bepis flopped his way in front of Caesar and Raymundo. “Stay…away…from my family!” None of us had ever heard the Magikarp utter something with such conviction and force, and the reason for that became clear as Bepis was enveloped in a brilliant light. Everyone in the immediate vicinity shielded their eyes, and when the light finally died down, I looked around to find that Bepis was gone. In his place, however, was a giant, blue water dragon. Our little boy had finally reached his evolved form of Gyarados!

Bepis stared down upon the attacking Ekans and Drowzee with a glare that would’ve probably made Arceus shit itself. The two Pokemon immediately turned tail and ran, with their Trainer not far behind. Funnily enough, the disguise completely fell apart when they tried to run, revealing two Youngsters in a trench coat. The two were so terrified that they scrambled out of the disguise and left it on the ground as they disappeared into the distance.

Bepis turned around and looked at us. I was expecting to be more intimidated, but the rage that I had felt previously was gone. Instead, he looked like he was about to cry. “I-I-I can’t believe I finally did it!” He looked so happy in that moment, and the rest of us were just as happy.

I think I spoke for everyone when I said, “We’re all so proud of you.” Bepis hadn’t been the strongest team member, but he had worked extremely hard, and the payoff was insanely worth it. At this point, he’d probably be able to give Caesar and Raymundo a run for their money.

We took a moment to collect ourselves before Bepis finally came back around. “All right!” he shouted with his new, booming voice. “Let’s get back to town! I’ll take care of whatever comes our way!”

That moment was when Bepis went from a little fish that had to be protected to a terrifying force of nature and one of the strongest members of the team. He literally carried us all back to town, where we all took a well-deserved rest.
[close]

12
Off-Topic / Re: The Post Your Thoughts of the Moment Thread 2
« on: March 24, 2019, 04:48:52 AM »
👀

13
i approve of these <3

14
Off-Topic / Re: The Post Your Thoughts of the Moment Thread 2
« on: July 09, 2018, 08:10:33 AM »
i literally don't use this username anywhere else lmao

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Forum Games / Re: Topic Kicking
« on: June 23, 2018, 02:36:39 AM »
am i still winning this or

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