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Thread Description
"According to Hop, I am Princess Peach." (Chapter 22 - 2/14 - One Year Anniversary!)

SprungGeoduck

Conqueror of the Cinnabar Gym
Team Alpha
Pokédex No.
120
Caught
Jun 21, 2019
Messages
91
Nature
Timid
Pronouns
She/her
Pokémon Type
Electric, Beautiful
OKAY

SO

you ever just binge a run in a weekend (and a morning when you're supposed to be working? my boss is going to kick my ass and it will have been worth it)

Romance is my absolute favourite genre, I absolutely consumed it as escapism throughout last year, but I always found that integrating it into nuzlockes was a bit... fiddly. This, though? Just going full balls-to-the-wall with the romcom and not holding back? Perfection.

A numbered list that's not in order:
  1. I totally agree with you on hating will-they-won't-they. It's so much more fun to put characters in a relationship and see how they handle it, and Lav and Leon are a perfect example of this. The scenes of them being together make the run so much richer than just mere pining.
  2. Lav is a perfect protagonist and Leon is a perfect love interest. They're both so delightful to read, especially Lav with such a clear and defined narrator voice.
  3. THE SUPPORTING CAST. Everyone is so goddamn wonderful and fits into the story (and the Mario metaphor) so well. I'm personally a sucker for Raihan (and Jabber).
  4. ROSE. What a bastard. I hate him. He is a motherfucker. Excellent job.
Overall, an absolute superstar (heh) of a run. Keep it up!
 

Dee

THIS IS MY HAPPY FACE
Writer
Team Alpha
Pokédex No.
147
Caught
Jun 26, 2019
Messages
941
Location
Zion National Park
Nature
Sassy
Pronouns
They/Them
Pokémon Type
Bug, Clever
Pokédex Entry
A regular writer of fanfics and other works, this pokemon loves puns, bugs, and the outdoors.
This chapter was sublime! It was nice to take a break before the inevitable storm hits, and Lav's adventures around Wyndon were fascinating... especially knowing that they were based on reality! I don't know what's crazier--that Hop, Marnie, and Lav picked a fight with a pimp in a gay nightclub, or that glancesherlock picked a fight with a pimp in a gay nightclub.

(Also the zoo scene was so fluffy and adorable 🥺)
 

glancesherlock

Consulting Detective
🌱Featurer
Writer
Team Alpha
Pokédex No.
32
Caught
Jun 10, 2019
Messages
747
Location
221B Baker Street
Nature
Lonely
Pronouns
she/her
Pokémon Type
Fairy, Ghost
Pokédex Entry
Just wants to stay home and solve crimes.
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #143
Hey, guys! I'm super tired today, so I'll add replies later; I wanted to make sure I got this update out today, because it's Valentine's Day! Which means it's also Brick by Boring Brick's one-year anniversary on the forum! It's admittedly not the most romantic chapter for the holiday, but there is... *checks notes* at least one kiss.

Thank you so much to everyone who's followed this run so far! It's a story I've had a lot of anxiety about posting, so I especially want to give a shout out to War, Thirteenth, Aurea, Gar, Dusty, and a couple non-forum friends who were there for the inception of Lav's story and encouraged me to continue, even when I felt the fic was trash (it's still trash, but it's my trash). Love y'all so much! 💜

The opening ceremony is utterly nauseating. Not only because I’m under the gaze of a hundred thousand eyes, but because I have to watch Leon and Rose go through a scripted bit. They’re all chummy as they “reminisce” on this year’s season and make corny banter. When we’re certain the camera’s not on us, Hop and I side-eye each other with disgust. Marnie never bothers to mask her glare.

Leon doesn’t look as comfortable performing as he normally does, but his face lights up when he gets to introduce us semi-finalists. There are eight in all. He says my name and smiles at me proudly. Through the applause, I wish them all away so we could be alone.

Once he’s finished, Rose takes over, and my stomach knots.

“Yes, and you are to be congratulated, dear boy.” The chairman eyes me and Hop. At the start of the season, that friendly smile might not have put me on such high guard, but I know better now. We all do. “Quite impressive both of your endorsements have made it here. You really do have an eye for talent.”

Leon’s genuine with his remark. “They’ve surpassed my expectations, that’s for sure.” Thankfully, he gets ready to move on with the proceedings, but Rose isn’t done with us. Suddenly he’s right in front of me with the microphone under my chin, and ooooooh fuck, he isn’t…

“Anything you’d like to say to Galar about your journey, Miss Lavender?”

I can practically feel the color leave my face. My hands clasp together in an attempt to cease their shaking. The world blurs. Being this small under the scrutiny of so many people waiting for me to speak is torture, but it’s the false pleasantry on Rose’s face that sickens me most. He knows exactly what he’s doing.

Why bother messing with me? Don’t know for certain, but his recent spat with Leon comes to mind.

My boys move together, Leon prepping to say something in his mic and Hop leaning over to take my place. But they’ve saved me enough this summer, and Rose is a maggot, and spite is a great motivator.

“It’s been a lot of hard work,” I say with all the confidence I can muster. My voice rings throughout the stadium. The quiver in it makes me feel sick, but I keep going. “I’m j-just honored to be here.”

It’s basic, but people clap. Not much else Rose can ask me to do. He nods in some weird gesture of yielding and backs away.

Marnie offers her hand, and I accept it in a low-five. A bout of self-reliance hits me, and my chest feels lighter.

Get stuffed, you posh bastard.

*****

“Was that really necessary?” Leon challenges. We’re off the pitch—no microphones, no crowd. The other challengers have rushed to the locker room.

“Pardon?” Rose is a picture of innocence. The champion’s dropped his character, but not the chairman. I don’t know if he can.

“Lav has…” He glances at me, thinking twice about his words. I appreciate it. “Didn’t see you put the others on the spot.”

The man chuckles. “Come now, we’re on the clock. Only so much time for highlights, you know.” He winks at me, and it’s gross. “She did a fine job, I think.”

Snapping at Oleana to follow him, he takes his leave, head held high like a ponce.

“Lee, I love you,” Hop says flatly. “But come on, bruv.”

“I know. Just… hggh.” Leon sighs, struggling. “Let’s enjoy the semi-finals, alright? You all worked for this, you should have fun. We can talk about it later.”

I squeeze his hand. This is hard for him, but I’m here if he needs me.

*****

“Oh, rotten luck!” Marnie frowns at the tournament screen. We’re facing each other in the first match.

Rotten luck, indeed. I was hoping to get a round in before facing either of my friends. One knockout, and you’re done.

I try to keep positive. “Just tell Piers not to have everyone in Spikemuth flay me if I best you.”

“Nah, they wouldn’t dare.” She gives her hair a little flip. “Not that they’ll have the chance.”

*****

So turns out Marnie’s a lot fucking better than her brother.

I thought I’d be strategic and save Gretta for a later match, let her save her strength for when I really need it, but no, I really should have put her in the party for this!

This Liepard shouldn’t be giving me this much trouble. It swipes through Doc with an unexpected barrage of critical hits, and even though Fern takes it down, she’s pretty worn out from the fight. All the same, I keep her in for Toxicroak. She comes out on top, but she’s wheezing too much for me to leave her out. She’s done. Cookie’s in against Scrafty and struggling despite every advantage he has.

Ingrid’s in my back pocket. She took out Piers on her own, but I’m not sure if she could handle Marnie solo. I have to save her for the ace, whatever it may be. As much as we trained together, Marnie’s been careful to keep her strategies close to her chest. Mates or no, she’s here to win it.

Fine by me, because same here.

Cookie makes slow work of Scrafty, and by the time Punky is on the field, he’s halfway worn out. I hold him, wanting to keep Zephyr and Honey for emergencies.

Marnie mentioned Punky’s “hangry mode” to me before, but never went into detail about how it works, nor have I witnessed it.

It’s terrifying.

The Morepeko is hit once, and then snaps into it like a bloody switch. Her eyes go red, her fur turns black and purple, and she snarls with long, jagged teeth. I don’t believe for a second it’s the same cute little Pokemon I’ve come to love. It’s positively feral!

“Quite a show, huh?” Marnie teases, looking on proudly at her demonic baby. “Good luck, Lav.”

Punky—it—leaps at Cookie with such ferocity, I forget to shout a command. Luckily, my Rapidash is on it straight away with beat-up. Punky kicks up grass as she retaliates with an aura wheel straight at Cookie’s chest. He whinnies, and I cringe. Hard hitter for such a little rodent.

Size and type are still on my side, though, and after a decisive high horsepower, the crazy things falls, reverting back to her adorable self (thank god).

Cookie’s on his last leg, but it doesn’t matter if he’s returned now. Marnie only locked five Pokemon into the battle, and I know what’s coming.

...At least, I thought I did.

Catching a Pokemon with the ability to gigantamax is almost unheard of, but it’s just my luck Marnie tossed a ball at the one Morgrem in Glimwood Tangle that could do it. The Grimmsnarl is massive, nearly stretching the limits of the shield doming the stadium. Even dynamaxed, Ingrid is dwarfed by the damn thing.

My jaw hangs open. What’s that anime where they fight giant cannibals? I think I’m living it.

Marnie gives me a thumbs-up. “Thanks for the help with this one, Lav!”

I shakily return the gesture. Glad I’ve had a hand in my own demise.

No. No, we’re not done. I still have half my team and my mission.

Slapping myself, I order the first attack. Ingrid’s a snipe-shooter, and type advantage helps us land a solid hit. This monstrous thing is still strong as shit, though, and delivers just as damaging a blow on Ingrid.

One more max flutterby ought to do it.



It doesn’t do it.

I don’t know how that Grimmsnarl holds out, but it does, and it unleashes a massive fairy-type wave that takes out what’s left of Ingrid’s stamina. She shrinks, completely knocked out.

My heart pounds. I’ve never had a dynamax Pokemon lose before. I’m so caught up in it, I nearly take it as a loss and forget I still have two more team members in the wings.

It’s a risk, but Zephyr has speed.

Two flamethrowers, and it’s done.

My shoulders loosen.

*****

Marnie accompanies me to the Center. Ingrid’s going to need special attention. She’ll be out for the rest of the semi-finals, but she’s alright.

“So sorry about that,” my friend apologizes for the fifth time. “Probably should have held back for that last bit. Just got wrapped in the moment, you know?”

“Yeah,” I nod. I’ve already forgiven her, because I understand. There’s no real harm done, anyway.

She sighs. Leaning against the counter. “Shame, though. I’m happy for you, but I was hoping to really show Galar what the new Spikemuth gym leader could do.”

I shrug. “Yeah, I’m sorry it worked out this way—excuse me, what?!” My shoes squeak as I twirl to face her. “Pull the other one!”

There’s more cheek in her grin than the rest of the world. “Piers’s contract wraps up this year, and he’s too burned out to one-up. I didn't want Rose passing our gym off to some git who didn't know tit for tat, so the town had a bit of a collection pool. Got a good lawyer and ensured I'd be the successor. That’s why I entered the challenge this year. Wanted to show Galar Spikemuth's still got the gumption and send Rose a message about who he’s dealing with. Little surprise, innit?”

“Little, nothing!" I have to beam, despite the bewilderment. “Why didn't you tell me before?”

“’Cause you’re nice,” she replies. “Didn't want you to hand me the win.”

I have to think, would I have? There’s my mission to consider, but…

“No,” I decide. “You’re my friend. I wouldn’t pity you like that.”

It melts her a little. “Thanks. Appreciate it, truly. Still have a lot of work ahead of me, though. You showed me that today.” Her green eyes flash. “But I took out the bee that beat down Piers, so there’s something to be said for that.”

It’s tempting to hug her, but Marnie doesn’t strike me as a huggy person. “Spikemuth’s really lucky to have you represent them.”

She smiles. “And Galar’s got a bright future if I’m looking at her future champion.”

I’m so damn happy I made that phone call in Hammerlocke.

*****

Hop sweeps his opponent in less than five minutes.

Leon and I watch from the tunnel, practically shell-shocked.

“Holy shit,” we exclaim in unison.

He nudges me softly. “Hard for me to lean one way or the other between you two, but after that…” He plants a kiss on my cheek. “For extra luck, luv.”

Blimey, I might need it.

*****

I take a deep breath. The last two hours were enough to heal my team, but not enough for me to mentally prepare myself for this match.

“Hey,” Hop offers as he takes my hand. “Whatever happens out there, ice cream’s on me after, alright?”

“Yeah,” I breathe, giving his palm a squeeze. “Sounds good.”

We’re alone in the tunnel. Leon’s on the pitch making a speech to kick off the second round. He can take his time with it. I’m not ready.

“You okay?” Hop reads me like a book, always does.

“Yeah,” I lie.

He raises an eyebrow, but doesn’t counter me. Instead, he says, “Thanks for being there for me. Had a rough go of it this summer. Don’t think I’d have bounced back without you.”

My face scrunches. “Bloody hell, you can’t make me cry before we go out there.”

He laughs and brings me in for a hug. “Sorry, mate. Just feeling mushy.”

I am too, honestly. We started this together, but we can’t end it together. It’s not fair.

“Still going to kick your arse, though,” I tease. “I’ve got to, for my mission.” Saying it out loud surprises me, but it feels right.

He parts us. “Come again?”

Hm shit, maybe I shouldn’t have. “W-well… Seeing everything Leon has to go through, learning what a son of a bitch Rose is… Leon’s miserable, Hop. He won’t say it, but I see it. And I realized whoever comes out on top will be put through the same ringer, so I thought…” My face reddens. “Well, I figured I’d go for it and take the hit so the same thing doesn’t happen to you.”

Now that I tell someone, it sounds pretty contrived.

My throat catches when he’s silent. “I’m sorry…”

“Lavender, I love you so much.” He looks me dead in the eye, seeming far older than he is. “That is the most fucked thing you have ever said to me.”

My mouth hangs open.

“Don’t think it’s crossed my mind I might be stuck working with that twat?” He offers me a kinder face. “I’ve got him figured out. If it’s me wearing the cape, I won’t make myself such an easy puppet. Lee was a kid back then, Lav. He didn’t have much of a chance.”

I shift uncomfortably. “Yeah, but…”

“Dunno how I feel about you throwing yourself to the wolves like that, though.” He’s worried, and guilt settles in my chest. “What, you don’t think you deserve to be happy?”

I shrug. It’s all I have for him.

“Lav, you’ve gotten so much better this summer,” Hop states. “I haven’t said it, but you really have. Three months ago you couldn’t walk onto a pitch without having an attack, now you’re talkin’ in front of half the bloody region.”

That’s… wow. “Yeah, being with Leon changed a lot.”

“I don’t think it’s ’cause of Lee.” He grasps my hands. “He’s not that wise. Can’t tell up from purple, remember?”

That gets a laugh from me.

“But I’m glad you two are together. Seems meant to be, I mean...” He gestures to himself proudly. “Not saying I called it with our game, but I bloody well called it, Peach.”

I shrug. “You’re a regular prophet.”

“Still waiting on my ghost-infested mansion, though,” he kids. “Maybe next year.”

“I’ll get you a vacuum for your birthday just in case.”

“I will hold you to that.” The joking shifts back to serious talk. “Anyway, just… Don’t forget to be happy, Lav. If you win it all, fantastic, but do it because you want it for yourself, ’kay?”

“...’Kay.” I think about that night in the cabin and what I told Leon. The championship was an uncertainty then. I was just here because I love the sport, not because I wanted to be the best. I try to picture myself at the top of the world above every other trainer in Galar.

I can’t.

It’s as disappointing as it should be.

Leon announces us, and reality comes crashing back. I’m about to battle my best friend in front of thousands of people. Er, noisy wallpaper.

Or people. Yeah.

“Good luck,” I tell Hop. “Though it’s gonna hurt kicking you in the teeth.”

He dons that silly aristocratic voice of his. “T’would give me no pleasure to mop the floor with thee. Yet t’is a necessity in this realm of battle, ah!”

We laugh like idiots and run onto the pitch.

He then proceeds to take out my first two ’mon with Wilma alone.

Fuck.

I know he got good during his soul-searching journey, but when did he get so good?!

Granted, leading with Wilma like that is completely unfair. I even let out Honey to give her a softer knockout, but nope! Time to double-down.

No chances now. I have Zephyr take care of her (though I have to shield my eyes from her defeat). He and Hop’s Corviknight chase each other around the pitch until we’re able to get enough flamethrowers in to take it down.

I switch to Cookie for Pincurchin. Even though it inflicts a nasty poison, it’s hard to defend against high horsepower. It goes down quickly.

Snorlax is a different story.

Neither Cookie or even Fern are a match for it. Hop must have taken special care to build up its defenses. Seems like each hit hardly phases it.

Fine. Tank for tank, then.

Gretta graces the field, and I can relax. She’s fast enough to get a decisive blow in before Hop can issue a heavy slam. It’s such a relief when Snorlax disappears into its ball.

Hop’s final Pokemon is Bongo. It’s touching to see him leave this one for last. He was over the moon when Leon handed him that little Grookey. Now it’s a giant ape of a Rillaboom. Dynamax makes him King Kong.

I’m confident with a kaiju-sized Gretta behind me. She’s never failed me, and she won’t fail me now. Even if it’s a struggle, we’ll win. Even if she takes a heavy hit or two like she does, we’ll win. Even if she’s not looking too great and Bongo doesn’t seem deterred by her attacks, we can still…

My resolve shrinks as she does.

I pale. Gretta lost. Hop actually beat her. My unstoppable pink bodyguard. My first wild catch. There she goes, back in her ball from her first stadium loss.

I’m not done. Zephyr has juice in him yet! I can’t dynamax him, but he has speed and flamethrower. We’ll make it work. I’ll beat Hop and the next guy and make it to finals and climb to the top.

Because I… I can still do it, right? Regardless of reason, I can still keep Rose away from everyone. Yeah. My mission.

My mission.

There’s a look in Hop’s eyes. It’s the same fiery determination I saw in Raihan and Marnie. Something tells me my eyes don’t look the same. Because I don’t have the drive. I don’t want to be the champion. He does.

And that’s why he wins.

Returning Zephyr, it dawns on me that I’m done. No more matches. No more expectations. No more scrutiny on the pitch. No more throwing up on gym leaders. No more embarrassment in front of the cameras. No more pressuring myself to sacrifice my happiness.

It’s like I’m free.

I exhale and fall to my knees as the crowd roars for my friend.

I lost.

And I’ve never felt so calm.

To be clear, this was not an in-game wipe. We're going off script here. (Marnie's Grimmsnarl did kill my Ribombee, but I'm not writing it as a death here, because Marnie would never.) The more I wrote this story, the less it made sense for Lav to become champion at the end. She doesn't want it, she really doesn't, and Hop deserves the W anyway, so I let him win this one in-story. That does mean I'm not giving y'all a Lav vs. Leon battle in this fic, sorry folks.













I beat him, but oh my god... He killed Doc (my Weezing) on the first turn and then almost annihilated half my team. It was so stressful, lmao. Bless Gretta for being such a tank and taking down Charizard for me.
 

Dee

THIS IS MY HAPPY FACE
Writer
Team Alpha
Pokédex No.
147
Caught
Jun 26, 2019
Messages
941
Location
Zion National Park
Nature
Sassy
Pronouns
They/Them
Pokémon Type
Bug, Clever
Pokédex Entry
A regular writer of fanfics and other works, this pokemon loves puns, bugs, and the outdoors.
...holy shit.

...a loss. Lav lost. Lav. Lost? I admit, I was not seeing this coming, not at all... I assumed that she would make it to the finals, see the end, become Champ, flip off Rose, the whole shebang, but wow. Wow.

I'm not upset, not by a longshot. You're right, the more I think about it the more it works for all the characters in the world you've created. Lav isn't made for the spotlight, and Hop's watched his brother get led about for so long and he has the temerity to see it through that I'm sure he'll make a great Champion. And I gotta say? After endless memes of Hop being the Destined Loser ™ (including from yours truly but shhhhhh) it is so, so gratifying to see him actually succeed.

I'm ecstatic to see where this run goes. Will Luigi take down Bowser? Where will things go from here? I'm excited beyond belief
 

KirbySSU

Unova Veteran (Though Not In Nuzlockes)
Team Delta
Pokédex No.
2864
Caught
Nov 10, 2020
Messages
220
Location
Driftveil City, Unova
Nature
Relaxed
Pronouns
He/Him/They/Them
Pokémon Type
Electric, Steel
Pokédex Entry
Likes Kirby, perhaps a bit too much.
5 minutes later and im still processing this help me gighrhgtshgfhus

But seriously, I really like the surprise of Hop actually winning. I'm a little disappointed that we don't get a Leon v. Lav matchup (the non-canon fight addition to the afterword was a nice touch, though.) I was a little surprised you didn't include Bede in at least some capacity, but I'm really excited to see what you'll do with Rose seemingly looming over the horizon. Great work, as always!
 

KirbySSU

Unova Veteran (Though Not In Nuzlockes)
Team Delta
Pokédex No.
2864
Caught
Nov 10, 2020
Messages
220
Location
Driftveil City, Unova
Nature
Relaxed
Pronouns
He/Him/They/Them
Pokémon Type
Electric, Steel
Pokédex Entry
Likes Kirby, perhaps a bit too much.
Congratulations on taking 2nd Funniest Written Run in the ganza!
 

QuietGuardian

Johto League Champion
🌱Featurer
Screenshotter
Team Alpha
Pokédex No.
33
Caught
Jun 10, 2019
Messages
1,355
Nature
Careful
Pronouns
he/him
Pokémon Type
Dark, Ground
I decided to read this several days ago even though I've never played SwSh, thinking, "hey, this got a lot of 'ganza nominations; it must be good, and I can try reading a story for a region I haven't played yet (or might not ever play, since I don't have a Switch)." Now I'm very invested in it! This story honestly might have become my benchmark for Galar's characters, for better or for worse—and I don't think it's for worse. I love pretty much every character you've written—Lavender and Hop have had excellent growth; Leon's personality is a delightful mixture of strength, heart, and dorkiness; Marnie and Sonia are wonderful and supportive…even Rose is well done, with his subtle but insidious villainy.

Romcom fics have become a sort of guilty pleasure of mine, especially when they deliver strongly on both rom and com, which this definitely does! It's also great to see the protagonist gain self-confidence in the process (I kinda hope that there's another scene with Grace towards the end, where she sees Lavender being in a happy and healthy relationship and her reaction is, "Hey, you did get better with someone else. Good for you."). And I appreciate that the story continues beyond the establishment of the romantic relationship and doesn't go with the "they got together, now everything's hunky-dory forever" approach. Watching characters evolve even after they finally kiss is certainly valuable.
 
Last edited:

Spectacles

Rule Maker
Team Alpha
Pokédex No.
139
Caught
Jun 24, 2019
Messages
518
Location
Pennsylvania
Nature
Jolly
Pronouns
she/her
Pokémon Type
Fairy
Pokédex Entry
It hides deep inside caves where no light ever reaches it and remains virtually motionless there. ~Pokemon Crystal, entry #52
WOAH. WAS NOT EXPECTING THIS!!! Super cool of you to head in a different direction from the gameplay. The story was always the most important part of this run, and so it makes sense to give the characters the ending they deserve. It's really nice seeing Hop's hard work finally pay off and have him come out on top for a change. Can't wait to see how the rest of this goes down!!
 

Wwarborday

King Writing Clown 2020
Pokédex No.
153
Caught
Jun 28, 2019
Messages
227
Location
Gaytown
Nature
Sassy
Pronouns
He/him/his
Pokémon Type
Ground, Ice
Pokédex Entry
I'm Doing My Best
How dare you be so poetic and post this on the one-year anniversary.

I've told you this before, but I'll tell you again; the fact that you posted this blows me away. I love this. I love that you posted something you care about that you're a little embarrassed by. Glace Sherlock is braver than any US marine. Like, it, just.

I'm so proud of you, and I'm inspired, and I love you and I love this fic. I cannot wait to see where it goes from here. What a good way for Lav and Hop to both get what they need.
 

SayleeK

Johto League Champion
Writer
Screenshotter
Pokédex No.
260
Caught
Jul 1, 2019
Messages
1,187
Location
Scrivener
Nature
Careful
Pronouns
She/her
Pokémon Type
Fire, Fairy
Pokédex Entry
Between long periods of dormant slumber, this writer rises again for periods of activity that leave piles of dead fictional Pokemon in their wake
1) Paramore

2) The easy chemistry between Lavender and Leon that had me really rooting for them

3) The fact that the “will-they-won’t-they” drama was over by the end of the second part and we dig into their relationship!!! Yes please!!! That’s the good shit!!!

4) The announcers, Jerry and Other Guy, crack me the fuck up every time

5) Jesus fuck Leon and Lavender are so cute together, help me, I am a puddle

6) Honestly all the friend vibes are SO good?? Lav’s friendships with Hop, Sonia, Marnie and Raihan are all different, but they all make my heart so happy

7) Rose’s toxic relationship with Leon. It’s SO poisonous and intricate and feels so painfully real and it hurts to see everybody around him KNOW how bad it is but be afraid to bring it up with him Q_Q But then when they do Leon is upset but when he cools his head he doesn't throw away all these people he trusts, he LISTENS to them... I LOVE HIM

8) Ugh Leon is SO GOOD with Lav’s anxiety and depression I love them so much help

9) “But they’ve saved me enough this summer, and Rose is a maggot, and spite is a great motivator” I love SO MANY lines in this fic but this might just be my favourite

10) You really made the Mario metaphors work so well god damn? Like actually made me tender and emotional about a guy talking about Princess Peach? (Also, when Lav was thinking about bricking up the door in her mind to protect Leon, all I could think was “yeah but we know what Mario does to bricks… ;)”)

11) Piers is such a fucking disaster human, absolutely love it

12) It’s midnight and I’m very emotional thinking back to Marnie giving her number to a girl crying in the bathroom and Lavender plucking up the courage to call her and them hunting dream Pokemon in Glimwood Tangle together and aaaahhhhhh I love their friendships

God I started reading this yesterday and I could not STOP? Your writing style is just too damn easy to keep reading, all your characters are so vivid and interact with each other so well, I love Lav’s babies and would die for them, I am 👀 to see what’s gonna happen next and when Rose is gonna fucking get his… (Due to forum maintenance I couldn’t post this when I finished but I need you to know that I started reading at about 10am Sunday, and did not stop reading until midnight)

Also, congrats on the Ganza silver, clearly VERY well-earned!
 

Whozawhatcha

i have too many projects
Pokédex No.
486
Caught
Jul 12, 2019
Messages
511
Nature
Lonely
Pokémon Type
Fire, Flying
After finally bringing enough to catch up I now have to somehow construct a comment for you cause uh. A lot has been happening.

It's very nice to see Leon finally opening her eyes to Rose, even if he's still too soft on the old man. Second, reading leon and lavs heart to heart as they finally air some shit and address things and grow was an immensely satisfying chapter. It's no wonder it's your favorite, because hard communication like that between significant others is the shit that makes or breaks the relationship. That's the building blocks of switching from puppy live to capital L love.

Still, I'm SO glad that hop out on that pitch told her nicely to fuck off with her sacrificial lamb shit. Dear god. Yeah you do sound dumb lav cause it's STUPID. That being said, I'm so glad my Luigi boy won! Hop's character arc has felt a lot more subtle in comparison to lav, but he's really earned it. Plus, it feels better story wise that he gets the chance to square up with leon cause you're right, LAV NEVER TRULY WANTED IT. It makes so much better sense for Lav to lose, and honestly comes as a relief.

Nice to see you beat leon though! My first time fighting him was easy and I didnt see what the big deal was. But, full disclosure since I dont see myself finishing Applin, my sheep wiped BAD to him the first time. The second attempt we still JUST lost to the gigantimax charizard field chip damage cause wtf. That aegislash whipped our shit man.
 

Thirteenth

eternally crying over the botw trilogy
Writer
Pokédex No.
14
Caught
May 20, 2019
Messages
1,802
Nature
Quiet
Pronouns
She/Her
Pokémon Type
Fairy, Ice
Pokédex Entry
The reason she guides people all the way down to the mountain's base is that she wants them to hurry up and leave.
I'm pretty sure I remember, when I first read this, being so pleasantly surprised by your decision to let Hop win. And thank god you did, Lav really doesn't have the constitution to be champion and have to work under Rose ;;;

This moment too:

There’s a look in Hop’s eyes. It’s the same fiery determination I saw in Raihan and Marnie. Something tells me my eyes don’t look the same. Because I don’t have the drive. I don’t want to be the champion. He does.

And that’s why he wins.
I love this moment so much. When she recognizes that she doesn't actually want to go through with this. And the calm that comes with it afterward, 👌
 

Aurea

Moderator
Moderator
🎇Contributor
Writer
Pokédex No.
25
Caught
Jun 9, 2019
Messages
738
Location
Sinnoh Region
Nature
Sassy
Pronouns
She/Her
Pokémon Type
Psychic, Steel
I'm so excited to've finally had a chance to sit down and reread this chapter. ;w; And man, was is just as sweet and satisfying the second time around.

“I will hold you to that.” The joking shifts back to serious talk. “Anyway, just… Don’t forget to be happy, Lav. If you win it all, fantastic, but do it because you want it for yourself, ’kay?”

“...’Kay.” I think about that night in the cabin and what I told Leon. The championship was an uncertainty then. I was just here because I love the sport, not because I wanted to be the best. I try to picture myself at the top of the world above every other trainer in Galar.

I can’t.
Can I just say? Hop is the unsung hero of this run. He goes through his own shit and grows up, but he's a steady, constant, supportive friend. He's got a level head. And he's always looking out for Lav.

There’s a look in Hop’s eyes. It’s the same fiery determination I saw in Raihan and Marnie. Something tells me my eyes don’t look the same. Because I don’t have the drive. I don’t want to be the champion. He does.

And that’s why he wins.

Returning Zephyr, it dawns on me that I’m done. No more matches. No more expectations. No more scrutiny on the pitch. No more throwing up on gym leaders. No more embarrassment in front of the cameras. No more pressuring myself to sacrifice my happiness.

It’s like I’m free.
I remember being SO happy that you decided to have Hop win it all. It's refreshing, a satisfying way to end his arc, and god it was so evident he wanted it. He wanted it, he worked his butt off, and it was so great to see a well-deserved win. But as great as it is for Hop, the relief that just emanates from Lav following her loss is palpable. I have to wonder, if he hadn't gotten mushy with her beforehand and gave her a gentle nudge to do what makes her happy, to do something for herself instead of misplaced martyrdom, if the outcome would've been different... it almost felt like she felt like she needed permission not to bear that cross. Permission to put her trust in Hop to hold down the fort as champion, so she could be at peace. I love Lav and Leon as much as anyone, but god, her and Hop's friendship shines here, and it might be my favorite chapter as a result.

Congrats on one year! 💜
 

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