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Collaborative Nuzlocke Hallowe'en Anthology IV: Four Whom The Bell Tolls

Extravanganza Accordian Demo
Thread Description
Spooky scary Nuzlockers send shivers down your spine

SayleeK

Johto League Champion
Writer
Screenshotter
Team Delta
Pokédex No.
260
Caught
Jul 1, 2019
Messages
2,135
Location
Scrivener
Nature
Careful
Pronouns
She/her
Pokémon Type
  1. Fire
  2. 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
🎃 2019 - 2020 - 2021 🎃

Welcome back, dear purveyors of niche death fiction. It is time, once more… for the Hallowe'en Oneshot Anthology.

As last year, there are no particular restrictions, just that it be a reasonably self-contained, spooky Pokemon story, preferably related in some way to a run of yours (though this isn't mandatory). And this year, we're also welcoming spooky art or short comics—bring whatever party piece you please when you come trick-or-treating on this thread!

In previous years, we've discouraged posting in the thread except for submitting a piece, but this year, my intention is to keep an eye on the thread and update a table of contents in the top post at least once a day, so please feel free to comment in the thread to tell our creators what you think of their work! This thread will remain open until October 31st, so there's plenty of time to get spooky!

Lastly, getting scared is fun, but flashbacks are not, so please include a rating and trigger warnings before your piece. If you're unsure whether or not to warn for something, please feel free to DM @SayleeK or bring it up in The Writer's Lounge. Happy Hallowe'en, folks, and have fun!

:3spooky: Table of Contents :3spooky:

Death Battle: Technetium vs Metallix (by Vivace)

The Emerald Maiden (by Green Tea)

News Flash (by JavierE64)

Echoes of the Past (by Kit_the_feef)

Hope's Ember (by SayleeK)

Knuckle and Fist, Ankle and Thigh (by crashcrashcrash)

Popcorn Pokemon: Strange Things Afoot (collaborative work)​
 
Last edited:

Vivace

Designated Meganium Defender
Writer
Team Delta
Pokédex No.
204
Caught
Jun 30, 2019
Messages
1,300
Location
Fochun
Nature
Brave
Pronouns
He/Him / They/Them
Pokémon Type
  1. Dragon
  2. Fighting
Pokédex Entry
The Lad Pokemon, Vivace's main powers are photoshop and chatting shit. Manages the unofficial nuzlocke football team.
Nobody yet? :(

In that case, here’s a Death Battle! fan matchup I got the idea for while discussing Girl & Karp lore with @Obelisk !
Rating: M
CW: Violence, peril, death, lots of math behind the scenes; at one point Obelisk and I were tearing our hair out over how many joules are needed to topple a tree

W: The first of Asimov's laws of robotics states: Do not harm humans.

B: Too bad some robots just straight up ignore that rule! Like Super Mario Bros. Z's technological terror, Turbo Mecha Sonic!

W: Or the Beast of Steel, Girl and Karp's killer Metagross.

B: He's Wiz, and I'm Boomstick!

W: And it's our job to analyse their weapons, armour, and skills to find out who would win a Death Battle!


Technetium​



W: When Arceus created the pokémon universe, He didn't count on the emergence of a separate timeline, one parallel to our own but different in small, important ways.

B: Like the fact everything inside it apparently wants us dead!

W: It's true. The alternate timeline's Arceus, also known as the Thousand Arms, poses a constant existential threat to our universe, so what Arceus did - along with the mad scientist Colress - was create seven elite warriors who could defend the timeline and its stories from outside attackers.

B: And what a collection of fighters there is! We've got humans, windmill Bill Cipher, that's literally just the letter I… But one of the strongest creations is a Metagross called Technetium!

Height: 5'03" / 1.6m
Weight:1212.5 lbs. / 550.0kg
Age: Undefined

Weapons and abilities of note:
Metagrossite
Steelium Z
Spell Tag
360º vision, can see through itself
Ability to spin fast
Supercomputer-level intelligence
Telekinesis
Expert at detecting weak points in armour
Ability to recognise DOGS
Meteor Mash
Heal Bell
Heal Pulse
Zen Headbutt
Shadow Ball
Psychic
Hammer Arm
Double Team
Psychic
Substitute
Protect
Teleport

Resistances:
Normal
Flying
Rock
Steel
Grass
Ice
Dragon
Fairy
Psychic (double resistance)
Poison (immune)
Pain (immune)

W: Known as the Beast of Steel, Technetium is perhaps the most fearsome fighter. Existing beyond time, it spent millions, possibly billions of years fighting alongside heavy hitters such as Celeste and Solgaleo as it defended our universe against any threat.

W: As a Lorekeeper, Technetium's base power, durability, and intelligence are all raised by around 87% of a regular Metagross. Lorekeepers are immortal, and while they aren't invincible they can be revived under special circumstances, such as when Celeste was brought back from death every time she was pulverised by Tech… in a training program. At least a hundred times.

B: What the heck? What kinda messed-up training is that? And I thought boot camps went too far!

W: When facing extreme conditions, Lorekeepers can completely turn off their ability to feel pain, allowing them to keep fighting FAR past their normal limits. Tech goes a step further by being made of metal to begin with, so it has few - if any - pain receptors for it to turn off!

B: Wiz, you keep saying Lorekeeper. Whose lore is it keeping? With such a cool robot guardian, we've gotta be talking about an awesome warrior here, or an ultra-powerful weapon, right?

W: Actually, Tech's mission in Girl & Karp is to protect a girl named Cassie Himura… who aims to win the league with her terminally ill Magikarp.

B: …Now THAT's awesome.

B: Shame Tech is made of technetium, though; with all that radiation, you bet Cassie'll be living a half life from here on.

W: Not exactly. Technetium refers to its core power source, not its entire body. In fact 'The Beast of Steel' is also somewhat of a misnomer. While Tech claims it's made of steel, its composition is closer to titanium reinforced with a mesh of steel-niobium alloys. This gives Tech incredible durability, as well as a high melting point. It also gives it a weight of 550kg, so it can utilise momentum to unleash devastating physical attacks.

B: But uh, question before we talk about the attacks. How did Tech go back to being a Beldum when it was a Metagross at first?

W: It's never stated, but the most likely explanation is that Metagross doesn't have one brain, but rather four. In the Pokédex entries, Metagross is said to be made of two Metangs, or four Beldums. This implies Metagross' brains are located in its Beldum-shaped legs, and not its head. Therefore, it can split back into four Beldum if it so wishes.

B: That might sound silly, but I wouldn't recommend laughing at Technetium. It holds beyond supercomputer-level intelligence, outpacing even the Frontier which can run over a quadrillion operations per second! And you can be sure it'll use every single one of those operations to figure out how best to hurt you.

W: As a Metagross built for war, Tech has a heavy arsenal of physical and special attacks. It can use brute force with Hammer Arm, a Fighting-type move that sacrifices speed for more power, Zen Headbutt, a Psychic-type move that can cause flinching, and its most devastating attack, Meteor Mash.

B: Meteor Mash, also known as Comet Punch, is a Steel-type move with 90 power which can increase Tech's own attack power for if it needs to hit more. On its own, it's powerful enough to throw this totem Kommo-o through a wall of solid rock, and that strength gets an 80% boost when amplified by a Z-Crystal!

W: Totem Kommo-o weighs 207.5 kilos, meaning that punch had to be at least 41,000 Newtons of force!

Good Arceus… Were you holding back?!

Negative.

B: Tech's powers go way beyond punching really hard, though. It can use Psychic to manipulate targets, Shadow Ball to weaken a pokémon's Sp. Def, and the moves Heal Pulse and Heal Bell if it wants to take a break murderising everything in sight and save someone's life instead, like when it saved Cassie from a deadly neurotoxin produced by an alien jellyfish it had never seen before!

W: Wait, wait, wait. I'm sorry, but I don't see either of those moves in the Beldum line's moveset?

B: Wiz. Metagross is a supercomputer, remember? A supercomputer that's fought in battle for a billion years, and you're wondering how it picked up some extra moves?

W: Fair point. With so much battle experience, Technetium is a far cry from normal pokémon who have to stick to a move per turn or four moves per fight. In a serious fight situation, Technetium overwhelms its opponent with brutal efficiency, not caring how damaged its own body gets in the process.

W: Tech can also learn other moves to overpower or outsmart its opponent, including Hyper Beam, an ultra powerful Normal-type move which requires a break to recharge after, Substitute and Double Team, which create copies of itself to trick its opponent, Teleport, which allows it to retreat from battle, and Protect, which creates a nearly-impenetrable barrier that weakens over time.

B: And if that's not enough, it can use the power of Metagrossite to become SUPER Tech!

W: Right, Mega Metagross-

B: No, Super Tech! With the Key Stone's power and an increase in every base stat except HP, Super Tech's damage output skyrockets to a whopping 145 ATK, 150 DEF, and that's before the Tough Claw and Lorekeeper multipliers! Every hit of Tech's carries something more akin to 236 base attack power, which in pokémon terms is almost twice that of Arceus Himself!

W: As powerful as the Beast of Steel is, it does have its flaws. It has a tendency to glitch when not at full power, especially at Beldum level where a single tap can cause it to flail wildly. It also cannot revive itself without the presence of Arceus or Colress, nor can it use Heal Pulse on itself as the move traditionally only works on other targets. Also, the strongest Lorekeeper, Celeste, managed to overpower it in that training exercise as soon as she tapped into her own hidden strength.

W: Perhaps Technetium's biggest weakness is its speed. Even at Mega level, Metagross sits at 110 which is pretty good, but not mind-blowing. Speed is difficult to truly calculate on base stats alone, as its reaction time has outpaced faster opponents in the past and its 360º range of sight and movement give it heightened manoeuvrability. Even as a Beldum, Tech can spot a Rockruff in the distance behind it and charge without any warning.

W: However, Tech has never displayed a top speed remarkably different from what you'd expect from a regular Metagross.

B: But that suits it just fine, as it prefers to tank hits rather than avoid them so it can analyse its opponent's power. And it's taken a lot of hits!

B: Like the time Beldum Tech blocked a Totem Mimikyu's Shadow Claw aimed at Cassie, or when Metagross Tech took a Magmar's Fire Blast straight to the head! And it was fine! The Magmar in question graciously excused itself when Tech turned to glare at it; it knew it was dead if it stuck around any longer.

W: Keep in mind that both of these move types were weaknesses of Metagross', meaning its durability must be far greater against other elements.

B: We're not done yet! That Kommo-o we mentioned earlier managed to cause a huge dent in Tech's body, as did this pink teddy bear in the Elite 4 fight, and Tech just got back up both times, more glitchy and pissed off than actually hurt!

W: It's funny you call it a teddy bear, because that might be the most impressive feat of the lot! Bewear might look cute, but according to multiple Dex entries its hugs are so strong they will break their trainer's spine.

B: Talk about tough love! Bewear can also tear trees down with a single jab or a kick. Running the numbers, that's a strength of about 20,000 Newtons of force, and that's nowhere near its full power! Tech took an actual all-out punch from this thing, and it survived long enough to absolutely kick the carebear's shit in until Cassie had to remind it the Bewear was already down!

W: Mercy and tenderness are unfamiliar concepts to the Beast of Steel, but it is learning how to love with the help of Cassie, King, and its adopted Alolan Vulpix that it named Frost.

B: Bah, never mind that, this is a killer robot here! It's fought off multiple pokémon at once, beaten a Clefable so hard it crashed into its own trainer, and broken a Relicanth's armour with a single tap!

W: Absolutely. It may still be learning leniency and casual English, but it has a Master's in Pain. If you ever plan on messing with this timeline, be aware you'll have to deal with the Beast of Steel.

Patterns consistent and underwhelming.


Metallix​



W: The planet Mobius started as a world of peace and tranquillity, filled with carefree creatures, crystal clear water, and brilliant blue sky. The people there had no care in the world except to hang out with each other, enjoying the lush flora and fauna Mobius had to offer.

B: I have a bad feeling about where this is going.

W: Then one day, a megalomaniac inventor known as Dr. Eggman showed up with the plan to take over Mobius. Operating from a floating robotic colony, the Death Egg, he hatched plan after plan, creating robots using the planet's creatures as power sources. His goal? To turn Mobius into Eggmanland, an eggxoplanetary theme park made in his own image.

B: What is this dude's obsession with eggs?!

W: …I don't know, but we only have to deal with the puns a little longer. Each time Eggman came close to achieving world domination, Sonic and his friends would always counter him. So, he created a robot copy to stop Sonic. It didn't work. So, he made another. It also didn't work.

B: Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results, and who's more insane than Dr. Eggman?

W: Right you are. Eggman's last creation, Metal Sonic, was also his greatest. It kept challenging Sonic, growing stronger each time, until one day it decided to take a shortcut. It snuck into Eggman's base, cracked open the secret vault containing all the decommissioned prototypes, and merged itself with them, creating... Turbo Mecha Sonic.

Height: 7'11 / 2.4m
Weight: Unknown
Age: Estimated to be less than 1 year old

Weapons and abilities of note:
Chaos emeralds
Ability to detect emeralds from long distance
Chaos Control
Chaos Blast
Teleportation
Burrowing without loss of momentum
Guided rockets
Machine gun
Foot dive
People's elbow
Martial arts
Razor-sharp spines
Laser rain
Spirit bomb
High intelligence
Might know everything you're going to do

Resistances:
Normal
Fire
Water
Grass
Electric
Ice
Fighting
Poison
Ground
Flying
Psychic
Bug
Rock
Ghost
Dark
Dragon
Steel
Fairy
Chaos emerald-based attacks

B: Renamed to Metallix in the series' reboot, this sinister looking tin hedgehog is the perfected model of Metal Sonic. He's stronger, faster, more durable than the rest of the models combined, and infused with an obsession for power that eclipses even that of his own creator!

W: Dr. Eggman was not happy with his robot's newfound free will, threatening to deactivate Metallix once he found out what had happened.

B: He shouldn't have done that.

B: He reeeeally shouldn't have done that.

W: But scrambling the Death Egg-

B: God damn it!

W: -was only the start of Metallix's rampage which set all of Mobius ablaze as he explored his powers. Tails, Amy, Knuckles, and the rest of Sonic's woodland pals were murdered one by one as Metallix marched ruthlessly towards his true goal: collecting the chaos emeralds and becoming the world's new god.

B: Metallix is extremely powerful but not invincible. And nothing short of invincibility is enough for this psychotic Sonic copy!

W: This would be the first time in his short life Metallix was denied something he wanted: just as he'd collected the last emerald, Shadow the Hedgehog stole and teleported them to a parallel world, so that the berserk robot could never access that power…

B: Buuuuut he forgot that Metallix can copy abilities! Oops.

W: By observing an opponent's moves, he can analyse it then use a rudimentary version of it himself.

B: Like some kind of robot Kirby… who's just as genocidal!

B: Using Shadow's Chaos Control and the leftover power from almost absorbing the seven emeralds, Metallix simply warped the fabric of reality so he could keep the search going, putting an entire new universe in mortal danger as he did so!

W: Metallix's CPU brain is composed of three augmented LIPS AI Eggman Custom Chips whose computation abilities are as of yet unknown. With their power, he can fight multiple opponents at mach speed simultaneously, predicting their movements and using their momentum against them. He can also trace and locate the unique signature of a chaos emerald, as shown on Mobius when he gathered them all within just a couple of hours.

B: And that's important, because those emeralds give him an insane power boost! With a single emerald, Metallix can fire energy beams which incinerate metal and throw his opponents through mountains. He can shoot rockets, electrify his entire body, and even spin at least 1000 RPM to cut through solid steel! Just how strong is he??

Yo Red. What does the scouter say about his power level?

IT'S OVER NINE THOUSAAAAAAAAAND!

B: Come on, NO! We're not doing this again!

W: Actually, we are. Red's scouter and Goombella's book both confirmed Turbo Mecha Sonic's power level, independently of each other, and this is consistent with the feats he performs elsewhere in each episode. While it's treated as a joke, it quickly becomes serious once he stops talking and starts fighting.

B: Metallix's base HP, Attack, and Defense are all… *sigh* over 9000, and being a robot designed originally to counter Sonic the Hedgehog, his speed isn't far behind! Once, when he located a chaos emerald sitting on top of the Axem Rangers' warship, he took off from the island it was flying over, went right through it, and took the gem in the space of about two seconds!

W: If we measure the distance of Metallix's trail across the screen, we get a maximum speed of 825.5 metres per second which puts him at supersonic range-

B: Hah, supersonic! I get it!

B: The force of impact destroyed the warship, yet it barely slowed Metallix down at all! This goes to show how ridiculously sharp his spines actually are when he's not using them to bully Sonic. And if he wasn't already unstoppable, he will be once he activates his forcefield which completely negates any attack that lands on him!

W: All this was done with only two of the seven chaos emeralds, mind you. This is as good a time as any to discuss how powerful the gems themselves are, and what better character to use as an example than the unassuming Yoshi?

B: When Yoshi absorbed a chaos emerald to try and fight Metallix, his fighting abilities were pushed several magnitudes beyond what he was normally capable of. His speed and durability gained massive boosts, allowing him to keep up with the Chrome Dome himself, but what's really impressive is what happened to his egg bombs! What used to be a small pop becomes a gigantic fireball of eggy death! Look at that thing!!

B: …Damnit. We're back to talking about eggs!

W: If we take the height of those trees and measure it against the blast radius, we get a yield of about 250 tonnes of TNT per egg. That alone may seem low, but if we compare it to base Yoshi whose eggs normally burst open like a ball of confetti, we can get an idea of just how powerful chaos emeralds make their holders.

B: A power multiplier of 5,000,000 just for one emerald? I need to get myself one of those! …For research!

W: Good luck, because they're extremely tricky to find unless you can track their signature frequency, and so far every single character who's used an emerald in Super Mario Bros. Z has at some point had it brutally beaten out of them by Metallix.

B: Take Yoshi for example. Once Metallix took his emerald and activated it, he threw Yoshi into a mountain so hard it exploded! Poor Yoshi!!

W: If we divide that by the power of the emerald he used, that's still 200,000 Newtons of force he generated himself.

W: How about the Koopa Bros? They had just finished powering their special attack with the yellow emerald, but Metallix went right through it and knocked them out with a single strike!

B: And he wasn't messing around that day, either! He hit them so hard their shells exploded, shot into the air to make lasers rain down on everyone, and for an encore he became Golden Metallix temporarily so that he could nuke the island they'd been fighting on!

W: It's important to note the latter feats were done with the power of four emeralds, and it took a while to gather enough energy for the bomb; he then lost those emeralds when Mario brought out an invincibility star to reach Super form along with Sonic. That said, Metallix still managed to kick the spirit bomb into the island before they could stop him.

B: Nuking islands is fun and all, what can Metallix do if he doesn't have the emeralds to start with?

W: Quite a lot, actually! Base Metallix can fire missiles, tank explosions powerful enough to level a city block, and burrow through the ground without losing any speed. He can easily reach mach speeds and even teleport in order to dodge attacks and chain together brutal combos. Metallix has also displayed limited telekinesis beyond his Chaos Control abilities, being able to throw bricks the size of his own head with ease.

W: He's fought off Mario, Sonic, Yoshi, and Shadow (who had an emerald) all single-handedly, and that was all while inside a negative zone which drains his powers! His durability is also pretty much incalculable, having never even been dented in any of his fights.

B: What, never?

W: Never! We're talking fully-charged spin attacks from Sonic, Chaos Blasts from Shadow, and even being swallowed and turned into an egg by Yoshi!

B: The same egg that was more powerful than Krakatoa's eruption. Metallix was at the centre of it.

W: I'm just getting started! Remember the Death Egg? When Metallix started his quest for total annihilation by deorbiting it while he was still inside of it?

W: The resulting collision was enough to shake the entire planet and cause a nuclear winter from the resulting dust cloud, much like the asteroid that caused the extinction of the dinosaurs. By measuring the diameter of the Death Egg and the angle from the planet (assuming Mobius has the dimensions of Earth), we see the Death Egg was floating 17 kilometres above ground level!

W: And Metallix walked away from the impact, unharmed. Not a spike out of place.

B: Aw, bullshit! What is he even made of?

W: While the original Metal Sonic's chassis was built from monocoque titanium, a single-shell material usually found in boats and aircraft, that alone wouldn't account for these incredible feats of durability. It's believed when Metallix merged with its prototypes, it absorbed and copied the strengths of each one. This massively reinforced its frame into a titanium-aluminium alloy which can withstand pretty much anything!

W: While the series' reboot is still running and this lore could change drastically, the author has confirmed the power of all seven emeralds combined would destroy Metallix. So that gives us some kind of ceiling to his durability, at least.

B: Unsurprisingly, this unmatchable level of strength and power has given Metallix a god complex, to the point where he will taunt his victims mid-fight and allow them to score hits on him just to prove how far his power level is above theirs.

B: When Red of the Axem Rangers X turned his signature Axem Blaster gun on him, ol' Tin Grin simply floated there, took the FULL FORCE of the blast, and then tore Red apart when he was done! And there wasn't a scratch on him! Because of course there wasn't!

W: While this laser gun looked incredibly powerful, the difference in power between these two meant Axem Red may as well have fired a water pistol at Metallix.

B: Yeah, when you describe in detail how powerful your weapon is and your opponent doesn't even step out of the way, you might want to rethink whether it's a good idea to fire the thing.

W: Point is, this lack of urgency to end battles in a timely manner has backfired on Metallix in the past. He's ignored opportunities to finish powerful opponents just so he can toy with them some more and has been hit hard enough as a result that it broke his connection with one or more of his chaos emeralds. But whenever Sonic and co. score a temporary victory over this metal terror, that's really all it is: temporary. His ability to track chaos emeralds means he's never far behind and could show up at any moment to reclaim what's rightfully his.

B: It doesn't matter how badly you beat him, how far you run, or even if you jump to an alternate universe: Mecha Sonic will find you. Mecha Sonic will kill you! And the angrier you make him, the slower and more agonising your death at his robot hands will be.

W: Remember when the Terminator was scary?

B: Yeah… Good times…

Fools! If you're all so eager to throw your lives away, THEN SO BE IT!!!

I'LL CRUSH YOU!!!!!!!!


W: Alright, the combatants are set. We've run the data through all possibilities!

B: It's time for a Death Battle!

Theme:
Technetium side
Metallix side
Neutral


The Battle​



A Metagross and its trainer are walking down a trail in Ula'Ula island when something catches the trainer's eye.

Hmm? What's this?

She bends down to pick up a red gem of incredible craftsmanship, gasping as she holds it to the light.

Tech! Do you think this is real? …Tech?

Technetium stands still, emitting a series of whirs and beeps as it stares at the emerald.

Cassie. Put that down. Dangerous.

Oh, good idea. Why don't you take it?

As Cassie hands Tech the emerald, she frowns.

…Did you hear that?

Affirmative. We are not alone.

Tech's main body rotates to look at a tree, which topples over to reveal a blue robot in the form of a humanoid hedgehog. Its visor lights up with a two red LED eyes.

Give me the chaos emerald.

Tech clicks.

Cassie. Run. Put as much distance between us as you can.

What, why-

RUN.

Cassie hesitates, but when the hedgehog starts toward them she bolts for safety. The hedgehog looms over Technetium, who quickly stores the gem inside its body.

I am not going to ask three times. Give me the chaos emerald, NOW, or I will take it from your charred remains!

More whirs and clicks as Tech considers this choice.

Request denied. Threat to timeline critical. Leave or be terminated.

…Oh, I'm sorry. Was that supposed to mean something to me?

………Fuck off or die.

The hedgehog robot bursts into a fit of laughter, then revs up for an opening attack.

That's more like it! I'll be sure to carve that on your tombstone!!

Metallix's foot meets a block by Tech, who skids several yards backward but is otherwise unharmed. He tries again, this time hitting a hexagonal barrier which bounces him backwards.

You will need to hit harder than that.

Have it your way!

Metallix's arm becomes a rocket launcher, which fires. Tech powers through the blasts as it closes the distance and aims a Meteor Mash at his neck.

It misses as Metallix teleports to the other side and foot dives into Tech, cratering the ground beneath it. He follows up by kicking Tech into the air, then fires an energy beam.

Tech spins away before the beam can hit it, then returns for another attack. Metallix teleports and dents Tech with a kick; Tech activates its own emerald to become Mega Metagross and rockets towards the hedgehog with a Zen Headbutt charged!

Metallix once again teleports away, leaving Tech whirring as it looks for its attacker-

A grappling hook catches one of Tech's legs. Metallix curls up and spins like a Catherine wheel, rapidly increasing his RPM as Tech is brought along for the ride. Eventually Metallix lets go, sending Tech careening through a hill and out the other side!

Tech lets out a low, metallic growl and sets off to meet Metallix in the sky again, though every time it aims a Hammer Arm the hedgehog simply blinks out of existence and reappears nearby.

This is pitiful. You can't even hit m-

As he says this, Tech rushes forward for another attack, then jukes backwards to catch Metallix once he teleports. The gem inside its body glows a brilliant red as its Meteor Mash becomes a Corkscrew Crash which catches him square in the neck; the blow sends him careening into the ground below!

He reappears in front of Tech looking almost completely unharmed.

Well done. CHAOS BLAST!!!

The resulting explosion - along with another combo of kicks - shatters the protective casing on Technetium's eyes and heavily dents its chassis. It whirs for a few moments, then begins duplicating itself until there are eight equally damaged Techs staring Metallix down.

Before Metallix can pick which one to attack first, they converge on him, starting their own combo of kicks and headbutts.
Metallix recovers, elbowing the real Tech so hard its copies dissipate, then fires a beam which explodes on contact.

He lifts his arms in pride as Tech clambers out of the crater it made.

I can detect a chaos emerald from miles away; no copy can fool me! No matter what you try, you're doomed.

In lieu of a response, Tech lifts in the air and begins spinning wildly, its four legs becoming a blur. Then, it shoots forward.

Metallix meets Tech's challenge by spinning as well. Sparks fly in every direction as hedgehog meets Metagross, accompanied by a horrible noise of metal ripping metal.

The main body of Tech splits cleanly in two.

Metallix touches down on the ground as he watches his handiwork, but he has to jump back as one of the halves lashes out at him - the Metang's claws make a piercing metal sound as they rake against Metallix's armour.

Your resilience impresses me, robot… It's almost a pity you'll be reduced to scrap before long.

Negative. You will be scrap.

The two Metangs turn to each other and emit a faint purple glow; the dents and scrapes in each one's armour fill back out, leaving them looking good as new.

What a farce…

Thus begins a long series of attacks where Metallix bashes, cuts, and blows each Metang up, only for the other to heal it and aim an emerald-powered Corkscrew Crash or a Shadow Ball at him in return.

At one point, a Shadow Ball knocks Metallix into a Corkscrew Crash, causing the blue emerald to pop out from Metallix; his eyes glow in fury as he extends his arm to catch it before Tech manages to reach it.

ENOUGH!!!

With another burst of energy from his emerald, Metallix blinks forward and unleashes a ridiculously long combo on the other Metang, crushing its body until only the arms remain.

He turns to the first Metang, but it isn't there; instead, he gets a Hyper Beam to the back! The beam of light goes straight through him, leaving a quarter-sized hole through his abdomen.

What? WHAT IS THIS???

Tech doesn't bother with a response. It backs up in order to wind up for a Corkscrew Crash, but it's grabbed out of the air.

OH NO, YOU DON'T!! YOU'LL BURN UNTIL NOTHING IS LEFT FOR THIS!!!!!

Metallix's arm extends, slamming Tech against every part of the ground it can reach. Tech tries to spin but is overpowered each time.

Eventually, a glint of red appears in the Metang's twisted body, and Metallix claws the rest of the chaos emerald out. Tech is tossed against the wall, fizzling as it attempts to get up.

At last, my prize. You worthless cockroaches could have saved yourselves if you had just given this to me… But to actually hurt me… I'll have to make an example of you.

I'll at least grant you a quick death… The human won't be so lucky.


He absorbs the chaos emerald, turning a faint golden colour which flickers back to blue at times. Sparks fly from him as he turns his arm cannon on the Metang.

DIE!!!!

The Hyper Beam completely envelops its target, incinerating it - and the wall behind it - within seconds. The beam continues until a new tunnel through Mount Lanakila is created, then the metallic hedgehog lands and tries to recover.



Suddenly, a mangled robotic voice rasps from behind as something grabs Metallix.

R̶̞͊e̸͓͒q̴̬͋ǘ̵̢e̴̤̿s̷̮̚t̸̲̒…̴̠̽ ̶̻́ḍ̷̉ȩ̸͊n̷̨̈i̴̼͛e̶͍̐d̵͎̐.̷̹́

Metallix tries to shake this Beldum off, but its claws have dug into the hole in his chassis. Feeling his circuitry shifting within himself, he teleports away from danger… only for another Beldum to be waiting for him in the spot he reappears at. An unseen force shakes Metallix back and forth, then there's a rush of air as his once-pristine metal frame buckles and collapses from the rapid changes in pressure.

NO!!! STOP!!! I DEMAND YOU STOP AT ONCE!!!!!

Tech ignores Metallix's pleas and keeps attacking, eventually letting itself touch one of his inner walls. With a glitchy cry, the Beldum spins wildly and uncontrollably, crashing into every part of the hedgehog robot's insides. Gold becomes blue as Metallix tries to reach inside himself to pull the Beldum out, but a wire gets caught on the Beldum and he's helplessly pulled this way and that as it whirls around inside of him!

The other Beldum appears, uses Psychic, and there is one last explosion…



Tech emerges from the cloud! It has two emeralds - one red and one blue - lodged in its body now.

What little is left of Mecha Sonic is strewn about the place in chunks of metal plating and circuitry. The light behind his eyes fades out.

T-threat -b̵̪̻̠͐́ẕ̸͓́̅͂z̸͕̈́̓̋t̷̛̪͇̏- neutralised. C-cassie. Find Cassie.








KO!​



B: What a horrible way to go… Show it again!!

W: Metallix was an incredibly fearsome opponent, dwarfing Tech in speed, attack power, and durability, but that's where his advantages end.

B: This might come as a surprise since this is a version of Sonic we're talking about, but Metallix didn't have the upper hand at all when it came to agility.

W: Sure, he could fly much faster than Tech, but his reaction time is not fast enough to take advantage of that. When it came to combat, he always relied on his short-range teleportation and ability to predict his opponent's next move or exploit their blind spots.

B: Which is fine against humans and hedgehogs, but useless against the Beast of Steel. Tech is able to see through itself and has a camera on each of its legs, so there's no possible angle from which he can sneak up on it, and outsmarting it was pretty much impossible considering the difference in computing power we were dealing with here.

W: There's nothing in any of SMBZ's canon that implies his CPU chips are that much more powerful than that of a regular human's. Metallix also does not strategise in the way characters like Sonic or Luigi do. If his plan of attack doesn't work, he switches to a new weapon or simply hits harder than he did before.

B: Even if we're generous enough to give Metallix superhuman intelligence, that's still nothing compared to Technetium. Tech is a supercomputer built for the sole purpose of combat and has a billion years' worth of fights in its memory banks, and it's managed some pretty insane stunts in Girl and Karp too. Like the time it perfectly timed its movements with a conversation happening outside its line of sight!!

W: To show the massive disparity between these two fighters in terms of intelligence level, let's consider the brain of a normal Metagross, which peaks at 1.685 exaFLOPs. Add in the Lorekeeper multiplier, and that equates to a computational speed of roughly 3.16 exaFLOPs.

B: That's a shitload of FLOPs! What does it mean??

W: An exaFLOP is a computing term that refers to whether a computer can calculate a quadrillion operations, like the Frontier supercomputer mentioned earlier. Tech passes that barrier thrice over, and compared to a human brain which can run 33.7*10¹⁶ operations…

B: That's 94 times the speed!

W: Asking Metallix to out-predict the Beast of Steel is comparable to a beginner chess player trying to win a game against Stockfish. There's simply no way for him to keep up, even by accident.

B: Technetium is just built different!

W: Of course, intelligence isn't everything. Tech can't simply think its opponent to death, but what it can do is exploit Metallix's weaknesses better than any other fighter he's faced to this point. The only character in SMBZ to even threaten Metallix was Shadow the Hedgehog, who primarily used attacks such as Chaos Blast which at one point created explosions from within his body. With the move Psychic, Technetium can do something very similar with far more precision.

B: Which brings us to the question: can Tech actually put Metallix down without an emerald boost?

W: To answer that, we need to look at what Metallix is built out of: a monocoque titanium alloy.

W: Monocoque is a relatively simple structural system that supports itself through tensile strength, much like surface tension. However, this strength is also a fatal flaw. Monocoque systems have a tendency to buckle or collapse if uneven pressure is applied to one side. The shell can look fine one second, then implode the next - for example, this tanker when air is vacuumed out!

W: This wouldn't normally happen to, say, a vehicle that'll be in the air or on the sea, but for a humanoid - or, uh, hedgehogoid - robot that's absolutely possible under the right circumstances. Plus, Metallix is mostly hollow, as shown by the sounds made when Yoshi punched him. This gave Tech a nice set of structural flaws to exploit once it realised what Metallix was made of.

B: Metallix's armour was so durable that Corkscrew Crash and the other physical attacks didn't really have enough power to hurt it, but the rest of Tech's arsenal completely, totally outclasses him, so it was just a matter of time before it found an opening so it could use Psychic - or in this case, created one itself using Hyper Beam!

W: And Metallix had no idea what to expect from a Metagross, so Tech constantly kept him guessing with moves such as Protect and Double Team.

B: Not to mention the power of the chaos emerald! But is it fair giving Tech one of those when it's a SMBZ item?

W: No, not at all! With that sort of power multiplier applied to a Mega Metagross with Tech's abilities, it probably could Meteor Mash his head off with one punch! But as it turns out, it doesn't even matter:

W: Let's say we re-cast the battle with base Tech against Metallix holding one or even multiple emeralds. It would be a far more defensive-minded fight on Technetium's end, but the result would be the same more times than not.

W: In order to threaten Tech at all, Metallix would have to actually hit it with a powerful attack, and between its far superior intellect and ability to use Teleport, there's no way Tech would allow that to happen.

W: Metallix can only fly at around mach 2.4, and his own teleportation has never been shown to cover more than a kilometre of distance. Meanwhile, a pokémon's Teleport can easily cross an entire region within seconds, and even twice that in HeartGold and SoulSilver!

B: All Tech really had to do was blip to another island, find its own chaos emerald, and blip back to give Tin Grin the brutal beatdown we saw here. Sure it doesn't know what they are, but that would only slow it down until it learned more! And what better source to collect data on something than a rampaging robot trying to kill you with it?

W: If Tech insisted on killing Metallix first, or there wasn't another emerald to find, it would still result in a stalemate as Tech would just stay out of range until Metallix runs out of steam… and that just wouldn't be fun viewing.

W: We would have to seriously rig the deck in Metallix's favour in order to shift the battle his way. Given an enclosed space or a time limit to land the killing blow, Metallix might have the edge, but Tech could still blow him up with Psychic given enough opportunity. Metallix's perfect form with all seven emeralds might also be too much for Tech, but seeing as he's never reached this form in the show, it's pointless to speculate on it.

W: In the end, Tech's supercomputer brains, greater manoeuvrability, and more varied arsenal allowed it to control this fight from beginning to end.

B: Tech really knew how to get under Metallix's skin!

W: The winner is Technetium.
A Metagross and its trainer are walking down a trail in Ula'Ula island when something catches the trainer's eye.

Hmm? What's this?

She bends down to pick up a red gem of incredible craftsmanship, gasping as she holds it to the light.

Tech! Do you think this is real? …Tech?

Technetium stands still, emitting a series of whirs and beeps as it stares at the emerald.

Cassie. Put that down. Dangerous.

Oh, good idea. Why don't you take it?

As Cassie hands Tech the emerald, she frowns.

…Did you hear that?

Affirmative. We are not alone.

Tech's main body rotates to look at a tree, which topples over to reveal a blue robot in the form of a humanoid hedgehog. Its visor lights up with a two red LED eyes.

Give me the chaos emerald.

Tech clicks.

Cassie. Run. Put as much distance between us as you can.

What, why-

RUN.

Cassie hesitates, but when the hedgehog starts toward them she bolts for safety. The hedgehog looms over Technetium, who quickly stores the gem inside its body.

I am not going to ask three times. Give me the chaos emerald, NOW, or I will take it from your charred remains!

More whirs and clicks as Tech considers this choice.

Request denied. Threat to timeline critical. Leave or be terminated.

…Oh, I'm sorry. Was that supposed to mean something to me?

………Fuck off or die.

The hedgehog robot bursts into a fit of laughter, then revs up for an opening attack.

That's more like it! I'll be sure to carve that on your tombstone!!

Metallix's foot meets a block by Tech, who skids several yards backward but is otherwise unharmed. He tries again, this time hitting a hexagonal barrier which bounces him backwards.

You will need to hit harder than that.

Have it your way!

Metallix's arm becomes a rocket launcher, which fires. Tech powers through the blasts as it closes the distance and aims a Meteor Mash at his neck.

It misses as Metallix teleports to the other side and foot dives into Tech, cratering the ground beneath it. He follows up by kicking Tech into the air, then fires an energy beam.

Tech spins away before the beam can hit it, then returns for another attack. Metallix teleports and dents Tech with a kick; Tech activates its own emerald to become Mega Metagross and rockets towards the hedgehog with a Zen Headbutt charged!

Metallix once again teleports away, leaving Tech whirring as it looks for its attacker-

A grappling hook catches one of Tech's legs. Metallix curls up and spins like a Catherine wheel, rapidly increasing his RPM as Tech is brought along for the ride. Eventually Metallix lets go, sending Tech careening through a hill and out the other side!

Tech lets out a low, metallic growl and sets off to meet Metallix in the sky again, though every time it aims a Hammer Arm the hedgehog simply blinks out of existence and reappears nearby.

This is pitiful. You can't even hit m-

As he says this, Tech rushes forward for another attack, then jukes backwards to catch Metallix once he teleports. The gem inside its body glows a brilliant red as its Meteor Mash becomes a Corkscrew Crash which catches him square in the neck; the blow sends him careening into the ground below!

He reappears in front of Tech looking almost completely unharmed.

Well done. CHAOS BLAST!!!

The resulting explosion - along with another combo of kicks - shatters the protective casing on Technetium's eyes and heavily dents its chassis. It whirs for a few moments, then begins duplicating itself until there are eight equally damaged Techs staring Metallix down.

Before Metallix can pick which one to attack first, they converge on him, starting their own combo of kicks and headbutts.
Metallix recovers, elbowing the real Tech so hard its copies dissipate, then fires a beam which explodes on contact.

He lifts his arms in pride as Tech clambers out of the crater it made.

I can detect a chaos emerald from miles away; no copy can fool me! No matter what you try, you're doomed.

In lieu of a response, Tech lifts in the air and begins spinning wildly, its four legs becoming a blur. Then, it shoots forward.

Metallix meets Tech's challenge by spinning as well. Sparks fly in every direction as hedgehog meets Metagross, accompanied by a horrible noise of metal ripping metal.

The main body of Tech splits cleanly in two.

Metallix touches down on the ground as he watches his handiwork, but he has to jump back as one of the halves lashes out at him - the Metang's claws make a piercing metal sound as they rake against Metallix's armour.

Your resilience impresses me, robot… It's almost a pity you'll be reduced to scrap before long.

Negative. You will be scrap.

The two Metangs turn to each other and emit a faint purple glow; the dents and scrapes in each one's armour fill back out, leaving them looking good as new.

What a farce…

Thus begins a long series of attacks where Metallix bashes, cuts, and blows each Metang up, only for the other to heal it and aim an emerald-powered Corkscrew Crash or a Shadow Ball at him in return.

At one point, a Shadow Ball knocks Metallix into a Corkscrew Crash, causing the blue emerald to pop out from Metallix; his eyes glow in fury as he extends his arm to catch it before Tech manages to reach it.

ENOUGH!!!

With another burst of energy from his emerald, Metallix blinks forward and unleashes a ridiculously long combo on the other Metang, crushing its body until only the arms remain.

He turns to the first Metang, but it isn't there; instead, he gets a Hyper Beam to the back! The beam of light goes straight through him, leaving a quarter-sized hole through his abdomen.

What? WHAT IS THIS???

Tech doesn't bother with a response. It backs up in order to wind up for a Corkscrew Crash, but it's grabbed out of the air.

OH NO, YOU DON'T!! YOU'LL BURN UNTIL NOTHING IS LEFT FOR THIS!!!!!

Metallix's arm extends, slamming Tech against every part of the ground it can reach. Tech tries to spin but is overpowered each time.

Eventually, a glint of red appears in the Metang's twisted body, and Metallix claws the rest of the chaos emerald out. Tech is tossed against the wall, fizzling as it attempts to get up.

At last, my prize. You worthless cockroaches could have saved yourselves if you had just given this to me… But to actually hurt me… I'll have to make an example of you.

I'll at least grant you a quick death… The human won't be so lucky.


He absorbs the chaos emerald, turning a faint golden colour which flickers back to blue at times. Sparks fly from him as he turns his arm cannon on the Metang.

DIE!!!!

The Hyper Beam completely envelops its target, incinerating it - and the wall behind it - within seconds. The beam continues until a new tunnel through Mount Lanakila is created, then the metallic hedgehog lands and tries to recover.



Suddenly, a mangled robotic voice rasps from behind as something grabs Metallix.

R̶̞͊e̸͓͒q̴̬͋ǘ̵̢e̴̤̿s̷̮̚t̸̲̒…̴̠̽ ̶̻́ḍ̷̉ȩ̸͊n̷̨̈i̴̼͛e̶͍̐d̵͎̐.̷̹́

Metallix tries to shake this Beldum off, but its claws have dug into the hole in his chassis. Feeling his circuitry shifting within himself, he teleports away from danger… only for another Beldum to be waiting for him in the spot he reappears at. An unseen force shakes Metallix back and forth, then there's a rush of air as his once-pristine metal frame buckles and collapses from the rapid changes in pressure.

NO!!! STOP!!! I DEMAND YOU STOP AT ONCE!!!!!

Tech ignores Metallix's pleas and keeps attacking, eventually letting itself touch one of his inner walls. With a glitchy cry, the Beldum spins wildly and uncontrollably, crashing into every part of the hedgehog robot's insides. Gold becomes blue as Metallix tries to reach inside himself to pull the Beldum out, but a wire gets caught on the Beldum and he's helplessly pulled this way and that as it whirls around inside of him!

The other Beldum appears, uses Psychic, and there is one last explosion…



Tech emerges from the cloud! It has two emeralds - one red and one blue - lodged in its body now.

What little is left of Mecha Sonic is strewn about the place in chunks of metal plating and circuitry. The light behind his eyes fades out.

T-threat -b̵̪̻̠͐́ẕ̸͓́̅͂z̸͕̈́̓̋t̷̛̪͇̏- neutralised. C-cassie. Find Cassie.
 
Last edited:

Black Viper

Conqueror of the Cianwood Gym
Screenshotter
Pokédex No.
5195
Caught
Jan 15, 2022
Messages
351
Location
England
Nature
Sassy
Pronouns
She/her
Pokémon Type
  1. Dark
  2. Poison
Pokédex Entry
Considered bitter by many.
Did someone say... spoopy?

Rating: Teen for mild language, distress and some spooky stuff

Trigger warnings? I don't think there's any especially triggering and the descriptions aren't especially graphic, but this is a ghost story, so expect ghosts, references to death/murder and generally spooky goings-on.

"Pinch me. I must be dreaming."

"No," replied Kenshin, "I will not. If I do, you'll just end up complaining that I've hurt you. Besides which, you know you're not dreaming."

"I'll do it!" beamed Sora as they reached across and pinched Hana's bare arm.

The raven-haired girl gasped and batted Sora's hand away. "What did you do that for? It hurt!"

"You asked!" replied Sora, staring dumbstruck at the girl.

"I didn't ask you to hurt me," she replied, before giving a derisive snort and walking on past them.

Kenshin smirked and patted Sora on the shoulder. "Oh, buddy, you never stood a chance. The only way to win is not to play." He moved his hand to Sora's back and nudged them on to keep walking, lest they be left behind.

"Well, what don'tcha believe Hana?" asked Sora, walking a bit faster to move in step with the girl. They had only been travelling together for a little over a week, but Sora's heart already belonged to Hana, whether or not she wanted it, which she didn't. This was an inscrutable fact that Sora had missed entirely, and, like a moth to a flame, they kept coming back for more, convinced that they could somehow change Hana's mind, despite all of the evidence to the contrary.

Hana hummed to herself for a moment. "Well, I'm not surprised that I won the Earth Badge, or Kenshin for that matter, but I'm surprised that we all won it, especially on our first tries. We only started out as trainers a week ago, so that's gotta be some kind of record or something, right?"

Kenshin adjusted his glasses and groaned. "Hana, don't."

"Don't what?" she replied, smirking at the giant.

"She doesn't mean it, Sora," said Kenshin, patting the youngster on their back. "You earned your badge, just like the rest of us, and no-one can take that away from you."

"No, no, I get it," whined Sora. "I picked the charmander, so that means I'm gonna struggle more than you guys with a ground-type gym." They shrugged, "Maybe I just got lucky that Beale's still settling into the role and he's not hit a rhythm yet."

"Maybe it's because he was limited to a maximum of two pokémon," said Kenshin, "And they were low-level and they barely knew any ground-type attacks? The first badge is a bit of a given, really, it's not meant to be a difficult match, it's just a check to make sure that a trainer knows how to handle their pokémon in a battle." He used the palm of his hand to push his glasses back up on to the bridge of his nose. "The people that lost their first badge match are usually too immature, or too reckless, it's not down to typing. Unless you'd gone in with just a pikachu, I suppose."

"That'd be pretty reckless," said Hana. "Type match-ups aren't everything, but it's part of a trainer's job to pick their battles. Going in with a weakness is one thing, but going in when they're immune to all of your attacks? That's suicide!"

"It's just a shame it doesn't get much easier with Brock next and then Misty," sighed Sora, as they ran a hand through their blonde mop of hair and sighed. "Why couldn't we live in Celadon? Beating grass-types would be a cinch!"

Kenshin groaned and face-palmed. "What'd I just say about the first match being a gimme? You've got a type-advantage of Erika, sure, but you'd still have to face Beale and Brock and Misty at some other point. You're almost better off facing them early, it's your final gym where you want to have an advantage, because the leaders get to use a full team of six and they don't have to hold back." Kenshin adjusted his glasses again, "Anyway, you just caught a mankey, so why are you so worried about Brock? You can leave Charlie in his ball and let, uh, what was it, Manfred? Manuel?"

"Marcel," corrected Sora.

"Right, Marcel," said Kenshin. "Let Marcel handle it. Give him a little extra training if you're worried, but he'll be more than enough to handle the rock-types. Have faith!"

"It's easy for you to say that, you have a bulbasaur," pouted Sora.

Kenshin nodded, "Yeah, and I've got a spearow and a weedle, too. It's one good pokémon for Brock and two with a weakness to him. I'm counting on Ichiro to do all of the work, that's no different to you and Marcel. You just need to train him up a bit and he'll be breaking boulders for fun." He patted Sora on the shoulder, "You and Marcel have this."

Hana's face had softened a little during the discussing and she flashed the young blonde a smile. "I've only got two pokémon, and yeah, Ren's gonna be front and centre for Brock but I don't want Hayato getting involved. He's just a pidgey, he's not going to do well against rock-types and I'm really hoping to find some support in the forest, but I kinda doubt it. Brock's still only our second gym, he won't be that tough. Misty will be the bigger problem, but we've got plenty of time to build our teams before them."

Sora looked to Hana, surprised by her kindness and that she was even paying them any attention. "Do you really think so, Hana? Do you think Marcel and I can win?"

"Marcel, and Charlie," she said, "And Ricky, too. And you."

"If you say it, then it must be true!" beamed Sora, whose footsteps instantly seemed lighter as they moved nearer to the pink-haired girl. "Thank you for believing in me, Hana. I just needed to know that someone did."

Hana winced a little and then nodded quickly, waving a hand at Sora to try to push them away from herself. She looked to Kenshin who said nothing but flashed her a rather smug smile as Sora ignored her efforts and kept trying to get closer to the girl.

"You kids aren't going into the forest tonight, are you?"

Kenshin was the first to stop, turning to spot an elderly woman, illuminated by a small oil lantern. She was sweeping leaves from her porch, but stopped and leaned on her broom for support as the group approached.

"That was the plan," said Kenshin. "We've got an hour or two before it goes dark, so we can get a decent way through and then find somewhere to set up camp. I've camped in forests before, so we'll be alright."

"Oh, my," murmured the old lady as she looked up at Kenshin. He was only 16, but he towered over most people, and this woman was no different. She was only just on a par with Hana, though it was clear she had been taller before she'd taken to stooping. "I'm sure you're very capable, young man, but pray, listen to an old lady's words of wisdom. Do not enter the Myrtle Forest tonight. You may have camped overnight elsewhere, but this forest is... different. It isn't like any other forest you've been through, it has an energy, and not always a positive one at that."

"Huh?" asked Sora. "What do you mean? Is it a negative energy?"

"It is a great feeling of sadness that permeates the forest," said the old woman. Her face was deeply line and her eyes were darkened with age, but now they seemed almost hollow as she spoke. "Terrible things happened in the Myrtle Forest on this day, many moons ago, and the forest remembers them. Every year the forest cries for those that lost their lives, and the sobbing of the trees will keep you awake, but tonight is a full moon, and that means that the forest spirits are at their most potent. Those same events will play out again tonight and you do not want to get caught up in them. Please, for your own safety, stay out of the forest tonight."

Kenshin shook his head. "Look, old lady, we don't believe in that sort of thing. Those noises will just be the bug-types feeding or pupating. We'll be fine. There's nothing supernatural in the Viridian Forest, that's just nonsense."

"Will we?" asked Sora, tugging on Kenshin's sleeve. "Have you been here before? Maybe the old grandma's right?"

"Old lady? Grandma?" the woman huffed, her nostrils flaring. "Don't you children have any manners? My name is Hibiki and I can hear you just fine. Especially you, bellsprout," she added, jabbing a finger in Kenshin's direction. "I've forgotten more about this place and its legends than you'll ever know, especially with that attitude. I have seen the spirits that are at work here and you would be a fool to dismiss my words as rubbish because you think you know better!"

Kenshin looked a little sheepish, but before he could say anything, Hana stepped forward. "Please, Miss Hibiki, tell us what happened. What could be so awful that you have to warn us not to enter the forest?"

Hibiki's face softened and she stretched out a leathery hand to touch Hana's cheek. "I'm so glad to see that some children are still raised properly. Not like these two brats." She smiled and placed both hands on top of her broom handle again, "My dear, come inside and I will tell you the story. If the boys want to listen too then they can consider themselves lucky to have you for a friend."

Sora pouted and was about to say something when Kenshin cut them off with a stern shake of the head. "Leave it, Sora, it's not the time."

The blonde muttered something unpleasant about the old woman and folded their arms, giving a sneer that Hibiki surely felt, even if she didn't see it as the three followed the old woman into her house.

Entering Hibiki's house was like taking a step back in time. It was a small cottage, as might be expected on the edge of a forest, but it seemed like Hibiki had no electricity, as the house was lit entirely by small oil lanterns and candles. There was no television, there was no radio, there were no radiators either, only a log fire in the middle that seemed to warm the entire building and, hanging over the fire, was a kettle with steam billowing from its neck.

Hibiki gathered four cups, clearly not holding too many grudges, and then strained the boiling water through tea leaves to fill each cup. She set them down on a small table, along with a pot of honey and a small spoon. "Take one," she said, "It isn't a warm night and this will heat you from the inside. You'll be glad of it."

Hana took one immediately, followed by Kenshin. He was the first to take a sip and, while it was freshly boiled, the boy didn't seem to mind. "That's good," he said. "My grandmother makes tea the same way. Thank you." His voice was a little more contrite, trying not to cause further offence now that he was in Hibiki's house.

Sora was the last to take a cup and sniffed it warily. They took a sip and winced, gagging a little at the bitter taste.

"That's what the honey is for," said Hibiki. "Myrtle tea isn't to everyone's liking, especially not at first."

Sora nodded and added two large dollops of honey, before stirring it vigorously. It still tasted and smelled odd, but it was more palatable now, so they left it at that, while Hana also added a little honey to soften the taste.

"You called this Myrtle tea," said Kenshin. "You also called it the Myrtle Forest. Is it grown there?"

"I call it the Myrtle Forest because that's its name," replied Hibiki, obviously not feeling too forgiving. "Don't they teach you anything in school? The forest is named after the trees that make it up, and the tea leaves come from those teas. This is rudimentary stuff, young man."

Kenshin sighed and sat a little further back in his chair. He wasn't going to be making friends any time soon, and, as Sora added another spoon of honey to their tea, it fell to Hana to get the old woman talking.

"Hibiki," she said, "You were going to tell us about the tragedy that took place in the Myrtle Forest. Please will you tell us now?"

The old woman nodded and took a sip from her tea. She set her cup down and leaned forward, talking in a hushed tone to the group.

"This is a story that my grandmother told to me, and she knew it from her grandmother, and from hers before. This is an old story, from when humanity was still young and the gods themselves still walked the lands.

Long before Pewter was hewn out of the mountains on which it stands, there was an ancient village at the base of the mountain range known as Taupe Vale. It wasn't the biggest town, but it was the only civilised place between the forest and Mount Moon, so it was an important stop for any travellers looking to rest or restock while on their journey. In time, it became a wealthy place and the fourth emperor stationed his eldest cousin, Ganryu there as its overseer and protector. Ganryu fortified the city, raised an army and ensured the roads were safe from bandits.

He also fell in love.

She was the third daughter of a cattle farmer, from the lowest caste, with no money or title, only a kind spirit and hair like the first leaves of spring. From birth, she had long green locks, so her parents had named her Midori and, as she grew older, her hair become more vibrant, and her eyes were of the same shade, too. She grew more beautiful and more compassionate with age, becoming an excellent cook, and she was known for her invigorating broth that she made diligently each day for the farm hands and any of the country labourers or visitors. It was this stew and her beautiful green hair that captured Ganryu's heart, causing him to propose to her immediately, but she politely rebuffed him, because her heart belong to another.

Despite this, Ganryu made his intentions known and set out to make the emerald-haired woman his wife. He would travel to see her each week, bringing lavish gifts of food, finest silks, spices, even perfume and jewellery, but Midori would always refuse. Some of the silks and jewels were worth more than the farm, but still she and her family persisted in turning Ganryu down.

The lord of Taupe Vale knew that, as long as her heart belonged to another, then it would never belong to him, so he spoke with his spymaster and the two men drew up a wicked plot to remove Midori's lover from the scenario. Within a week, he was found dead, hanged by the neck in his own hut. The coroner declared it to be suicide, but those in the village knew that this could only have been done by the wicked hands of men, and no-one was more certain of it than Midori.

So, when Ganryu came to visit a few days later, bedecked in his finest armour and carrying wondrous gifts of all sorts, Midori made her feelings very clear. She accused him of her lover's murder and told him that no-one could ever love a man with a heart so black. Midori told him she would die before she would marry him, and after being rejected so publicly, Ganryu swore revenge.

He returned a week later, but instead of his usual compliment of guards and carts of extravagant gifts, he came alone, disguised as her deceased lover. On arrival, Ganryu found the farm to be abandoned, with no sign of where the family had gone. Ganryu had become cruel and deceitful, and with no-one around, he approached a cherry blossom that stood in the courtyard of the farm. "Mother Sakura, most beautiful and fragrant of all trees," he said, bowing before her, "Do you know to where my love has run? I fear that she thinks I have died and now that I cannot find her, my heart is sick with worry."

The tree blushed, its blossom turning from snow-white to soft pink at being addressed in such a way by such a noble man. "Do not worry," she whispered on the breeze, "Your love has gone to the Myrtle Forest, go and be with her. She misses you dearly."

Ganryu laughed and removed his disguise, blowing a loud trumpet blast to summon his army that had been in waiting beyond the ridge. Realising what she had down, Mother Sakura began to weep as her blossoms fell to the ground as Ganryu and his mean burned down the farm and the fields, releasing the pokémon, so that the family could never return. They then mounted their steeds once more and set off for the Myrtle Forest.

The light was fading by the time they arrived, but under the forest's dark canopy, the family's lanterns were easy to spot. Ganryu and his mean found the family in a clearing, sleeping in tents around a single log fire, with a single large pot cooking in the middle of their camp. His trained archers silently picked off the watchmen under the cover of darkness, and the rest moved stealthily, going from tent to tent and snapping the necks of any they found asleep, until only Midori was left. Ganryu had her bound and brought her out of the tent to show her the fallen bodies of her family and their labourers, not a single one of them spared by Ganryu's cruel hand.

He then asked Midori again to marry him. She refused, so he had his men break her bones and force her into her own cooking pot, sealing the lid with sap from the myrtle trees and leaving her to boil to death, surrounded by the bodies of her family. He then returned to his tower and sought out a new woman to be his wife while tales of of supernatural occurrences in the forest began to circulate.

Travellers would tell tales of sobbing noises coming from the forest at night, even when no-one is around. They come from the trees and the plans themselves, and sometimes their emerald green tears fall to the ground when they remember the unwitting role that Mother Sakura played in Midori's demise. More than that, though, they tell stories of eerie sights.

People have seen an entire family with their necks bent backwards, so that they can only stare at the forest canopy. Any that disturbed their silent vigil were met with unearthly screams and were driving out of the forest, while others tell of the emerald maiden, a ghostly figure whose bones bent the wrong way, with unnaturally green hair that was never dry. In her presence, the trees themselves would cry for their role in her death. It is said she walks the earth looking for her lost love and if anyone should encounter her, she will take revenge by breaking their bones and then dragging them back into her cooking pot, where she will boil them alive in their own juices."

Kenshin, while skeptical of the whole story, was a sucker for a good myth, and this had a bit of everything, so he accepted it for the story it was, even if he believed none of it. He sipped at his tea and sat back, nodding in satisfaction at Hibiki's tale. He had never heard of Lord Ganryu or Midori, or the Myrtle Forest, or even Taupe Vale, but it was a good story all the same.

Hana, too, was riveted, not least because Hibiki was telling it directly to her, but she too found the tale fascinating and it sounded like so many other tales that she had been told in her youth. She sat up and cleared her throat, "What happened to Ganryu?"

Hibiki sneered, "He married, raised a family and died of old age. If anyone tries to tell you that there is such a thing as karma, then it's not to be found in this world."

Sora had grown bored during the story and was fussing over their phone, only looking up at the change in Hibiki's tone to realise that the story was over. "Well," they said, hopping to their feet, "Thanks for that, old woman, but we need to get going and it is dark now, but Pewter City isn't going to wait for us."

Startled by Sora's sudden move, Kenshin took a moment to catch up, shooting the younger teen a glare for their rudeness. "Thank you for the tea, Miss Hibiki," he said, trying to make up for it with a bow of his own. "Thank you also for the story, and for taking us into your home."

Hibiki looked at the two with disinterest, but stood up when Hana did the same. She reached out to take the girl's hands in her own, "My child, thank you for listening to an old woman, but please, do not think of my tale as a mere story meant to scare babes, it is a warning. You do not want to meet the emerald maiden of the forest, or her family on a night like this." Hibiki squeezed Hana's hands, as if stressing her point to the younger woman, "Do not enter that forest."

Hana nodded. "Thank you, Miss Hibiki, I'm sorry about my companions, but we are grateful for your company and your sage advice. I hope you have a pleasant night."

The three made their way outside to find that darkness had already overtaken the daylight and, with it, a cold breeze that made the idea of travelling through the forest even less pleasant than normal.

"So," said Hana once they were out of earshot of the cottage, "Are we going back to Viridian for the night? It's already dark, so why don't we just get some sleep and get an early start on it tomorrow? We can still make it to Pewter."

"You aren't serious, are you?" asked Sora, wrinkling up their nose. "You're scared of some old granny's story? It doesn't even check out. It's totally bogus."

"What do you mean?" asked Kenshin, looking warily to the blonde.

Sora grinned and held up their phone. "I was fact-checking everything she said. I mean, it's 2022, you've gotta do it, you can't trust adults, they'll tell you whatever. So, like, Taupe Vale was this centuries old place that died off when they built Pewter, and the Viridian Forest is full of myrtle trees, so calling it the Myrtle Forest kinda makes sense, but that's it. The rest is just some BS ghost story to scare kids."

"It's still dark," said Hana, "If we had a few hours of good light then yeah, I'd wanna get started but I dunno if it's worth starting now when it's already dark. Ghosts or no ghosts, you could end up tripping on a root or walking into a weedle nest. Who wants to do that?"

"I wanna go for it," said Sora. "I wanna stick two fingers up at that rude old lady and march right into the forest. We've got torches and Charlie's tail will give us plenty of light if you stay close. We were gonna camp out there anyway, so why not? Yo, Kenshin, you got an opinion?"

The taller boy looked up and blinked, "Nh? Sorry, I was looking up the story too. Like always, there are different versions but they all have the same basic facts and end with an entire family being slaughtered in the forest. It doesn't mean it didn't happen," he shrugged, "And even though Hibiki was a good story-teller, 've never believed in ghosts before and I'm not about to start now."

Sora grinned and put their arm around Hana. "Come on, Han-chan, you've got me and Kenny boy here to protect you against any ghostly forest spirits. You'll be fine! We won't let nothing happen to you, right, Ken?"

"Call me 'Kenny boy' again and I can't promise that nothing will happen to you," he replied, pushing his glasses up the bridge of his nose with his palm. "Sora's right though," he said, looking to Hana, "There's three of us and we've all got pokémon, I don't think we need to worry."

Hana sighed, "Fine. Fine. We'll do it, but if anything – anything at all – happens then I will hold you two personally responsible!"

"I won't let anything happen to you," said Sora, taking hold of Hana's hand. "I will protect you with my life."

Kenshin grabbed Sora's mop of dirty blonde hair and began dragging them into the forest, "Save it, Romeo, this is not how you pull." He looked over his shoulder, "Come on Hana, you don't want to get left behind, do you?"

Hana's eyes widened at that comment and she hurried along behind them.

:3spooky::3spooky::3spooky:

They had been walking through the Viridian Forest for about half an hour, entirely without incident. It was cool and the ground was still somewhat damp underfoot from recent rainfall, but it was still early enough that they could easily go another hour or two before needing to stop for sleep.

Charlie was leading the group, the charmander's tail giving off enough light to illuminate the forest floor, as well as giving the team a focal point, while Jiro perched on Kenshin's shoulder and Ren walked beside Hana. The girl kept touching the back of the squirtle's head for comfort and support, secretly wishing that the water-type was taller, so she could hold its hand. She was on edge and wanted something to make her feel a bit safer. She looked over her shoulder at Kenshin and his spearow, bringing up the rear of the group and got a friendly smile from the older boy. Maybe they were right, maybe it was just a story. It was still a creepy forest full of bugs, but that wasn't too bad and it certainly wasn't going to stop her.

"I thought there'd be more pokémon," said Sora. They looked back at the other two, "We've been walking for a while and I've not seen anything at all."

Hana blinked. Kenshin stepped up beside her and groaned. "Maybe you need to look a little harder," he said, pinching the bridge of his nose.

"Yeah," said Hana, "I mean, there are literally pokémon everywhere in this forest."

"No, there aren't," said Sora. "I haven't seen them."

Hana sighed and fished her torch out of her pocket. She flicked it on and immediately pointed it the canopy above, where bright yellow eyes reflected the light back. "See those? Metapod."

She then shone it at another branch where the tough shells of kakuna hung. Pointing it down at a berry bush that rustled, she shrugged. "Caterpie or weedle, probably, something's in there making it shake."

Kenshin nodded. "Pokémon aren't going to run up to you and beg to be a part of your team and those in the forest are better-equipped to blend in. They're not just hiding from you, but from predators, too, and most of them won't like fire, so they'll give Charlie a wide berth."

Sora grumbled, "Alright, alright, no need to gang up on me. I guess I'll just take a metapod if we get to the end of the forest and I don't find anything better. That's gotta be easier than raising a caterpie. It's like halfway to being a butterfree already."

The group continued to walk through the forest. There was a gentle bristling of branches in the breeze to accompany them, along with the occasional chittering of the assorted bug-types that called the forest home. Even the chittering was a quiet, calm sound, devoid of panic or aggression, it was all quite peaceful and even Hana found herself soothed by it. The night was drawing in, so tiredness was starting to take over and the group became tired and less chatty until Kenshin said what they were all thinking.

"Next time we find a bit of open space, we should set up camp." He yawned, covering his hand with his mouth, "We've made good progress, so we'll be out of here by lunch time tomorrow."

So, when the group found a clearing besides a small stream running through the forest, it seemed too good to be true. They pitched their tents and, with Charlie's help, set a campfire going in the middle, where they all sat for a warm mug of hot chocolate. There were fewer trees here, so the canopy broke in places, allowing them to see the night sky and the stars overhead.

"I told you there was nothing to worry about," said Sora, gently scratching the back of Charlie's head. "Just an old story to scare the kids. There's barely any pokémon here, let alone ghosts and ghouls. It's just us."

"There are pokémon here," said Kenshin, "It's not anyone else's fault if you're just oblivious to them."

"He's right," said Hana. "There are some bugs over near the water, I dunno what, but I'm not gonna disturb them with my torch. They aren't doing us any harm."

Sora shrugged. "I didn't see the right kind of bugs. There was nothing to catch. That's what I meant."

"Of course," said Kenshin, before yawning again. He had already withdrawn Jiro and taken his glasses off as he too watched the fire. "I'm going to call it a night. Try not to make too much noise, yeah?" he asked, his attention pointed towards the blonde.

"Well, what if we see the green ghostie?" asked Sora, smirking at their own joke.

"Emerald maiden," corrected Kenshin, "And you won't, so behave."

He withdrew into his tent and closed the zip, leaving Sora, Hana, Ren and Charlie sat around the campfire. Charlie gave a yawn too, his eyes drooping somewhat as he stared at the embers. His little yawn came complete with a tiny little flame that carried on the air for a moment before flickering out of existence.

"Aww," said Hana, "Are you tired too, cutey?" Ren tugged on her arm and nodded in agreement. "Maybe we should all go to bed," she said, looking to Sora. "I'll see you in the morning."

Sora nodded and gave her a wave as she and Ren withdrew into her red tent. They withdrew Charlie to let him rest and sat for a while longer, poking the embers of the fire with their stick. "I should have got Ren to put it out," they muttered, before grabbing a bucket and trudging towards the water's edge. "Kenshin would never forgive me if I went to bed without damping down the fire first."

Sora lowered the bucket towards the stream and dragged it across the surface. They caught wind of their reflection in the moonlit water and stick their tongue out, but as they smirked, the face in the water contorted and it was no longer Sora's reflection staring back. Instead, there was a beautiful young woman, with long, dark hair that seemed as dark as the abyss. She pouted as Sora leaned forwards to get a closer look and then looked directly at them with a wide frown and hollow eyes. Sora yelped and tried to lean back, only for a something to pull them into the stream. Sora gave a yell as they fell head-first into the water and thrashed around, quickly getting back to their feet, dripping wet.

"Is everyone alright?" shouted Kenshin, almost tearing open his tent to step out into the night with a torch in hand. Hana followed him out, shining her torch around until she spotted Sora and began to giggle.

"It's not funny!" whined the soaked blonde. "I saw something in the water and it pulled me in."

"Was it a really shiny penny?" asked Kenshin. "Like that fountain in Viridian?" He strolled towards the stream and offered Sora a hand.

"No," Sora replied, climbing out of the water. "It... was a woman."

"You saw a woman in a stream that's about a foot deep?" asked Hana, folding her arms. "Baka."

"No baka," hissed Sora. "I saw her face, and then something grabbed my collar and dragged me in. She did it, she was trying to drown me!"

Kenshin groaned. "Technically, you can drown in a foot of water, but are you sure something dragged you in? Maybe you just slipped and fell? That's far more likely."

"Then explain the ghostly face I saw!" objected Sora, trying to wring out some of their clothes.

"Too much candy," said Hana. "It's all you eat. Processed sugars. It's why you're so hyper and you don't sleep well."

"Agreed," said Kenshin, fishing the bucket out of the stream and placing it beside the fire. "Sit yourself down and dry off, don't get in your sleeping bag while wet and remember to put out the fire when you're done." He shook his head and climbed back into his tent, "Don't forget about it again, alright?"

Sora snorted and sat themselves down beside the fire with a sullen expression on their face. "I know what I saw, and I only saw it because I went to get water for the fire! I'm not stupid."

Hana smiled. "Are you sure?" she asked before vanishing into her tent with a mean-spirited giggle.

"Some friends," muttered Sora. They were shaken up by what had happened, but the more that Sora thought about it, the more they started to doubt it, too. It probably was down to too much sugar and the old bat's story playing on their mind, helping them to see things that weren't real. Sora sighed and inched closer to the fire, they were never going to dry out at this rate.

As they sat in front of the fire, Sora noticed that the flames were starting to die off, so they got a stick to poke the embers, hoping to restart them, but the fire continued to shrink. Sora wasn't anywhere close to dry, so they entered their tent and started to rummage in their bag for Charlie's ball.

Turning to leave the tent, they saw a bright greenish flash from the outside and scrambled out as quickly as possible, pokéball in hand and ready to battle. The fire had been extinguished and was little more than smouldering embers now. The light was now moving away from their campsite and Sora, headstrong and foolhardy as ever, gave chase.

"Hey!" they shouted, chasing the green glow and, as they closed the gap, they sent out their charmander. "Charlie, use ember to stop it running away!"

The charmander nodded and reared back, before unleashing a volley of burning embers in the direction of the glow. Some missed, but Sora was sure that some were hits, though the glowing creature failed to react and they fell through it, landing as black coals on the forest floor. Some struck a few dried leaves at the base of a bush, where they tool hold and started to burn. The glow stopped in its tracks and rushed to the fire, smothering it in a few seconds as Sora and Charlie had chance to catch up to it.

"What are you?" asked Sora.

The glow turned and, once more, Sora saw that woman's face. She bore a pained expression this time, with her dark hair hanging either side of her face as she stared back at the youth. Her mouth twisted, it was distorted and her lips were impossible to read, yet Sora knew what she was saying, "Fire". She had extinguished the loose embers and stretched out a painfully thin, incredibly bony arm, pointing it at Sora and beckoning them closer.

Sora refused, "Lady, you tried to kill me. No way." Yet, they found themselves moving forward, towards the spectre. "Hey! Stop it!" shouted Sora, "Charlie! Attack her!"

The charmander looked as confused as Sora, but understood what attack meant and let loose a volley of embers. Any that came too near to the creature were extinguished immediately and fell to the floor as black lumps of hardened ash, but it distracted her for a moment as her gaze settled on the fire-type instead.

"What's going on?" shouted Kenshin, rushing through the forest with Jiro flapping overhead. Just behind him were Hana and Hayato. "Sora!"

"Ken!" shouted the blonde. "It's the green ghost, she's real, she's right here! She put out the fire!"

"The what?" asked Hana as the pair arrived with their birds. "What are you on about?"

Sora blinked and turned back. The ethereal woman was gone, it was just them and their charmander now. The two flying-types took a perch on branches overhead as Sora's entire body slumped. "The ghost lady, the emerald maiden, she's real, she was right here. Charlie and I were chasing her, she... she kept putting out the fires"

"What fires?" asked Kenshin, before looking down at Charlie. "Oh hell no! Sora, have you had Charlie using his fire attacks IN A FOREST? Are you trying to burn us all alive?"

Hana huffed, "Even for you, that's pretty reckless."

"What? No!" Sora held their arms out. "No! We were chasing the emerald maiden, Charlie was attacking her, and she kept putting out his embers..."

The charmander looked to Sora, then to the others and nodded.

Kenshin groaned and rubbed his brow. "I don't even know where to start with this. You could have started a forest fire here, and it's because you think you saw a ghost. So first she tries to pull you into a stream that's only a foot deep, and now she's putting fires you made? Well, good, I'm glad someone knows how to be responsible in a forest." He turned, disgust etched across his face. "I'm going back to bed, you should do the same and I just hope you pack this in. I don't know what you think it is, Sora, but it's not funny and I'm done with it."

Hana said nothing, recalling her pidgey as she followed Kenshin back to their campsite.

Sora glanced around for any sign of the light that accompanied the spirit, but found nothing. Just the charred remnants of Charlie's attacks. "Am I losing it?" they mumbled, "You saw her too, didn't you buddy?"

The charmander nodded and rubbed up against Sora's leg, before yawning.

"Yeah, you're right," they muttered. "We should just go to bed and forget all about this."

So, Sora returned to their tent and recalled their charmander, climbing into their sleeping bag and hoping for an undisturbed night.

Sora's eyes begun to grow heavy and the warm embrace of sleep was soon upon them, but no sooner had they started to pass into slumber were they awoken by a blindingly bright presence within their tent.

The light was intense and painful, but Sora blinked through it to see the maiden squatting at the end of their sleeping bag, staring at the teenager.

"You again," snarled Sora. "What do you want with me?"

The spirit's head tilted. She opened her mouth, but made no sound and yet, within their own mind, Sora heard the word "follow". She then rose up, passing through the material of the tent, and into the night.

Sora shook their head. "I'm not that stupid," the said, before turning over and trying to go back to sleep.

It only took a few seconds for them to feel a stabbing pain in their mind. It wasn't physical, but it felt like the sharpest headache Sora had ever experienced and the blonde sat upright, clawing at their own head to dismiss the pain. They winced in agony as the face of the ghostly maiden reappeared through the end of their tent. "Follow," she spoke to Sora's mind and the pain dissipated.

"You won't leave me alone until I follow you, will you?" asked Sora.

The spirit turned and passed back through the tent, out into the night. This time, Sora unzipped their sleeping bag, pulled on their trainers and jacket, and followed the spirit out into the night, finding it stood on the edge of the camp site, waiting for them.

"Where are we going?" asked Sora, finding that the ghost's green glow was enough to illuminate the path, so that they could step over roots and rocks easily enough.

There was no answer as the spirit continued, leading Sora deeper into the woods, where the trees grew taller and the canopy filled in so much that they couldn't see the night sky at all. The forest grew quieter, too, so that the sound of their footsteps squelching through mud or snapping twigs was the only sound that Sora could hear. It was only then that they realised they had left their pokéballs behind, and Sora could only hope that they wouldn't need them.

The spirit led them on further, deeper into the darkness of the forest. The trees became more gnarled and the ground become more uneven, making it difficult for Sora to walk without stumbling, but they pressed on, following the emerald-haired spectre into the depths of the Viridian Forest, past the myrtle trees and further on into the depths, to the parts of the forest so ancient and overgrown that no human had disturbed them in centuries...

:3spooky::3spooky::3spooky:

It took three weeks for them to find the body.

Sora Amai's travelling partners reported them missing the next morning, and they searched the forest with the aid of the Viridian Forest Rangers, but found nothing at all. There were footsteps in the soft mud heading away from the camp, but these faded out as the trees and the grasses overtook them, leaving nothing but a vague direction. In the end, Sora's body was found by chance, as a geographical survey was plotting the routes of the streams within the forest and their growlithe caught the scent of rotting flesh and went to investigate.

Decomposition had already set in, and rigor mortis had frozen the limbs in place. Every limb was broken, and as the body was found at the bottom of a steep cliff, cause of death was listed as a fall on the official autopsy. The fall must have been violent, and death presumed instantaneous, due to a deep laceration across the neck, presumed to have come from contact with a jagged rock on the way down.

The body was found surrounded by mushrooms, which were not uncommon to the forest, but when it was moved they found a clutch of wild garlic and leeks growing beneath it, neither of which had ever been found in the forest before. Some people might think that these were ingredients needed for a wholesome broth, but if so, no-one said anything.

Sora's travelling companions were told what had happened and began to rave about an ancient Kantonian legend that fell out of popular memory centuries ago. They claimed to have been warned of this "emerald-haired maiden" by an old woman that lived in a cottage at the edge of the forest, but when investigators went to speak to this old woman, they found her alleged dwelling to be little more than ruins. Checking census data, they found that the cottage's last-known resident, one Setsushi Hibiki had died over three-hundred years ago, and the building had since been left to fall into disrepair.

Despite this, investigators noted the pungent smell of myrtle tea in the air when exploring the ruins...
 

JavierE64

Masks are so 2016!!! But don´t forget to wear one
Writer
Team Alpha
Pokédex No.
310
Caught
Jul 1, 2019
Messages
955
Location
Perú
Nature
Modest
Pronouns
He/Him
Pokémon Type
  1. Grass
  2. Water
Pokédex Entry
The Master of both Light and Darkness; who loves the Violent and Dramatic, and the Fun and Adorable.
It's time for a spooky Gijinka Story.
TW: Mention of death, violence, propaganda, implied discrimination, and news.

Rogue metahuman claims the life of government officials
A total of three lives were lost during a confrontation near Brooklet Hill last night.

Last night, a rogue metahuman murdered a total of four goverment officials during a police chase. The culprit in question is Wendy Bustamante, a young woman who recently gained the ability to grow razor-sharp spikes on each of her arms. She is one of the many people who gained superhuman abilities thanks to the meteorite that had crashed in Alola a couple of weeks ago.

Bustamante was recently taken into the facilities of The Aether Corporation, who took charge in the study and investigation of the strange phenomenon, but she escaped shortly after. Police officers were able to track her near Brooklet Hill, where the traffic event took place.

Bustamante was able to repel most of the opposing force thanks to her spikes, but it wasn’t long before the Z-Squad was called. A group of Metahumans who collaborate with the local government to help apprehend anyone who went rogue. And out of the five members of this team, only two of them made it out of the fight alive.

The first victim was Jack Falkner, a youngster who was able to grow a pair of wings that allowed him to fly long distances. He was the first to strike against Bustamante, before being stabbed in the neck by the suspect in question.

Next up was Preston Baker, the leader of the squad who was murdered while defending his teamates. And finally, we have Gia Cabana, someone with the power to channel electricity, who got herself killed while trying to avenge her fallen comrades.

The only ones remaining were Maria Hernandez, a youngster with superhuman strength; and Sydney Addams, the one who finished off Bustamante by snapping the suspect’s neck with her telekinetic abilities. “It was a tough moment. I’ve met those guys for a while, and losing them in a matter of seconds was devastating. At least the threat is neutralized, and that’s all that matters”, said Addams.

While this is far from the first case of a homicide caused by a rogue superhuman, this one has caused the most amount of damage; both to property, and to human life as a whole.

Following the incident, President Kane issued an order to apprehend all unregistered metahumans and take them to the facilities of The Aether Corporation. “These metahumans are a danger to both society, and to themselves”, he explained. “It’s our job to capture them before they can cause any more harm”.

Lusamine Cadwell, current CEO of The Aether Corporation, also speaked in response to the incident, as well as the events that preceded it. “We do our best here at Aether to make sure those people get cured of their current condition, so they can return to a normal life”, explained Cadwell, “It’s such a shame some bad apples refuse the help we provide, and instead cause death and destruction.”

As a final word, here at The Informant we advise you to report any metahumans you stumble upon to the local authorities, so they could get the treatment they deserve.

Published by The Informant.
A subsidiary of the Aether Corporation.​

This is a Gijinka One-shot based on an old Nuzlocke run of Ultra Moon. This is my first time writing a Gijinka run, and it's been a fun experience.
I'm currently taking a class on how to write articles, and I thought it could be interesting to write a story using this format.

The Z-Squad are based on my ingame team: Jack (Fearow), Preston (Brionne), Gia (Charjabug), María (Makuhita), and Sydney (Kadabra).
As for Gabriela, she's the story counterpart of Totem Araquanid. And you can imagine how that battle went.


Thank you all for reading, hope you all enjoyed it, and I wish you a nice day.
 

Kit_The_Feef

Someone who draws too much ¯\_(ಠωಠ)_/¯
Artist
Screenshotter
Godfather
Team Delta
Pokédex No.
4612
Caught
Jun 16, 2021
Messages
1,298
Location
Australia
Nature
Impish
Pronouns
He/him
Pokémon Type
  1. Bug
  2. Fairy
  3. Steel
Pokédex Entry
Comic artist. Idiot. Has far too many active projects for his own sanity. Unreliable when it comes to updates on his non-comic endeavours.
I didn't think I'd do a Halloween story, but then, randomly...
Also, this one's a lot less disturbing than last years'. This one is mild spooky at best. It's more retrospective, tbh.

Fog started to creep over Pastoria, sweeping across the Great Marsh. The Safari Game had closed hours ago, and the staff never realised I could sneak in. It's not like I was there to steal Pokemon from their natural habitat, anyway. Only the fools with the funds and time to waste bothered playing the Safari game. Simply ridiculous. It was much colder than normally expected this time of year, and I held Princeton in my raincoat just a little tighter. The little shit's response? To peck my hand, of course. Ungrateful brat. The marsh sloshed below my feet and I was glad that I always dressed appropriately for the marsh. Gumboots and a raincoat over a woollen jumper and jeans. Practical. I wore the same outfit every day. The rain never seemed to let up here in Pastoria.

Why was I trudging through the Great Marsh at midnight armed with nothing but a spoiled Piplup? Truthfully, I didn't know, either. It was just a feeling. A feeling that I needed to come here. I could feel invisible lines etched in the air, and I simply HAD to follow them. It felt… Important. I reached the end of the boggy part of the marsh, only to be faced with a steep hill and the fence that marked the end of the Safari zone. The lines went through the fence and up the hill. I would have to climb the fence. I sighed and put Princeton in my backpack. He of course, pecked me again and gave a chirp of annoyance that I had temporarily put him in the cold. I promised him I'd put him back soon. He was not amused.

It was times like these, I really wished I'd gotten a trainer's license so I could put the moron in a ball for convenience. But, unfortunately, you have to either be in Trainer's School or an active participant in the league, and I was way too old for Trainer's School. Princeton was classified as a pet, hence no Pokeball. He's more of a wild Pokemon in my opinion. I'd also have to have a license if I wanted to travel with him, but, my current calling was here, at home, researching history as respect for my late grandmother. I'm sure these weird spiritual lines I followed must be linked. Or I'm going insane. I know, historically, that the Diamond clan used to live in the area, but the village itself seems lost to time. Gram would know where it was.

She seemed to know everything about how Sinnoh was before colonisation. She'd heard the tales of the early days from her father, had been an infant when the great Temporal Incident had occurred. Apparently, the village life changed very dramatically after then. The old gods, the nobles, their whole way of life, was shattered. It didn't take long for industrialisation to change everything she knew. In fact, Princeton was the last wild Piplup she ever saw. She claimed that they used to be all over the coastal lands. All gone now. The Noble Pokemon, vanished. Gram had so many stories to tell about clan life, the way she remembered it, and how it all disappeared. She wanted me to continue their story. I'm trying, Gram. I'm really trying.

I ate a mouthful of dirt as I crashed down from the fence. Stupid fucking branch snagging my foot and causing me to lose composure. Princeton, for the most part, looked annoyed that I had disturbed him when he was falling asleep in the backpack. He pecked me for the third time today as I put him back in my coat. He was freezing. So much for Water types resisting Ice. He eventually calmed down and settled again. Was it just me, or was the fog getting thicker? No, I could barely see anything now. But I could still feel the invisible lines. So I continued to follow. I may have ran head-first into a tree or two. I really should have brought a light source. Not that it would have helped too much in this absurd fog.

Then the lines stopped. How the fuck was I going to get home? The fog cleared, but only in a relatively small clearing. It was still extremely dense and thick around the edges of the clearing, but the clearing itself was, well, clear. The full moon shone through, illuminating everything in a soft glow. It took me a few minutes to realise that I was standing amongst ruined, tattered cloth attached to thin, skeletal structures. I stood right on top of a circle of rocks that would have made a great firepit. Wait, it WAS a firepit. I'd found the remnants of an ancient campsite. I wandered towards one of the structures, and saw the ancient logo I'd only seen in old, faded pictures in Gram's closet. This must have been where she grew up. Tears welled in my eyes. I'd found her history, like she'd always wanted me to.

I went to look inside one of the desolate tents, to see if I could find more history, but then an odd whispering sound started to carry through the air. It got louder as the wind picked up, fog returning and obscuring my vision once again. When it cleared, everything had changed. The tents stood tall and welcoming. The firepit was flaming. But it only felt lukewarm. Children played with their Pokemon, but the sound was filtered, muted. Everything looked like sepia tinged grey in various shades, like an old photo. The village was full and content, but everything was cut off from me, like I was not in the village but rather watching an old film. A very subtle smell of smoke and fire cooked bread wafted through the air. I was watching a memory of what once was.

The ghosts seemed to not care about my presence, but I think some of them noticed. A few smiled in my direction. One child waved. It was all very surreal. I felt a hand on my shoulder. Unlike the rest of the ghost village, this felt very real. I turned to see one person that looked much more solid and real, in full colour like myself. He looked familiar. His eyes were the same amber as mine, he wore a more elaborate outfit than the others in the clan. But if I really concentrated, I could see through him. He was as real as the other ghosts. He smiled at me, addressed me by name, shook my hand, and right as he was about to introduce himself, everything vanished. Including the skeletal remains of the campsite.

In the morning, I woke up on the outskirts of the marsh, to Princeton pecking my face and trying to shove a berry in my mouth. Little idiot, he could still be incredibly endearing sometimes. I tried to climb that hill again, now that the day was cleared of fog (but still miserably overcast, as Pastoria tended to be.) But, try as I might, I never did find that campsite again. I went back to my house, went through Gram's stuff once again. I found the photos. I recognised some of the ghosts from the site. But most importantly, I recognised the man from the vision. He was on a photo holding a baby. The caption read "Me and Father, 1898."

I still didn't know the man's name. But I'd apparently just met my great-grandfather's ghost. I hope I see him again some day. For today, I felt that weird impulse again. I think I'm going to check out Lake Valor.

Spoiler alert, he goes to Lake Valour. I'm in the process of writing a storylocke about my Steel Type Monolocke of Brilliant Diamond, which will borrow story elements from PLA and Platinum. I'm not releasing any of it until I have significant backlog and have finished gameplay. But I can confirm the starter is Princeton the Piplup. Look forward to seeing more of him, if you dare.
 
Last edited:
OP
SayleeK

SayleeK

Johto League Champion
Writer
Screenshotter
Team Delta
Pokédex No.
260
Caught
Jul 1, 2019
Messages
2,135
Location
Scrivener
Nature
Careful
Pronouns
She/her
Pokémon Type
  1. Fire
  2. 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
I've actually been mulling over how to do this story all month, and I've figured it out just in time... warning for discussions of murder, mass murder, child murder, genocide, mob mentality, and arguable misuse of a dead body. Also all dialogue no prose what am I even doing with this writing style

An egg?

An egg?

Is that possible?

Well. Other ghosts do, don't they? Chandelure, and the like.

Alright. But they've always been ghosts. I mean, can you even call them dead if they were never even alive?

Not like us.

No. Not like us.

But it's an egg.

It's our egg.

Of course it's your egg, but you know what this means for all of us.

We haven't had any eggs since--

Don't think about it.

I wish it was that easy.

I know. Thinking about the little ones who hadn't even hatched, when the eggs hit the valley floor, all that way down--

They didn't even feel it.

How do you know?

I don't, but you've got to hope, haven't you?

I suppose.

At least it would've been fast, from that height. Not like burning.

Like us, you mean.

Obviously.

And now there's an egg.

I don't even know how it happened. It was just… there, when we woke up.

Sounds like the normal way, then.

I know, I just… I still can't believe it.

We have to keep it warm, don't we? We're not warm. Not anymore.

If we go deep enough in the caves…

We still need something to cover it with.

We need to go hunting. Catch something.

We can't trust it not to destroy the egg.

We can't trust anything anymore.

We don't have to bring it back alive. Bodies can hold heat for quite a while after they've died.

I remember.

A Lickitung, maybe? They're big.

Seems like the best choice.

We'd better go quick. Before it gets too cold.

We can't lose it now.

The first Zorua egg since…

Since.

Yes.

Let's go.





It's us.

Did you get one?

Here.

Cut open its belly, tuck the egg inside.

There. That should keep the heat in.

It's exciting, isn't it?

I know. Even if I could still sleep, I don't think I'd be able to.

I don't want to take my eyes off of it until it hatches.

How long does it take? I was just a pup myself when it happened, so I don't really remember.

It can take quite a while, I'm afraid.

Time hardly matters to us anymore, does it?

We still need to keep watch. Even this far into the cold, there are humans.

We can't let them take it!

We won't.

There's others, of course. If another Lickitung sees us with this body, or a Lickilicky…

They won't. They don't come down this far.

The Frosslass won't care.

Maybe they'll understand. After all, they can lay living Snorunt.

Oh, you're right! Maybe they can tell us how to keep it warm?

We'll have to be careful of Granny Garchomp, though.

We haven't touched one of hers. Surely she wouldn't be so cruel as to--

You know she doesn't like us.

She just doesn't like sharing territory, that's all.

She doesn't like us. She thinks the dead should stay down.

She would think that.

We're already dead. She can't feed us to her young. But this little one might be different.

We have to hope.

What if it's too cold for it here?

Where else can we go? This land's crawling with humans.

We'll find something. Somewhere.

There has to be somewhere else we can go without humans.

We'll do whatever it takes to protect this little one.

Absolutely.

It's your egg, of course, dear. But it's the future for all of us.

That's right.

If we can have living pups, like Froslass do…

Our clan can still live!

We can watch over them, teach them, protect them…

We'll never let what happened to us happen to them.

Never.

I'll kill any human that comes near it.

Be careful. Killing a human brings more humans. You know that.

Yes. I remember.

Even so.

...Yeah. I suppose so.





It's getting too cold. We need another.

The egg's getting bigger, too.

It's starting to move.

Soon. We'll get to meet the little one soon.

Only if we can keep it warm.

If a Lickitung's not big enough…

Lickilicky are harder to take down.

And they'll be on guard. They'll have noticed their children disappearing.

So it'll be harder to get a Lickitung anyway.

Might as well go for it.

We're with you.

Be careful.

I'll try, but we won't come back empty-handed.

For the egg.

For our future.





Where's--?

That tongue… hurts more now… than when we were alive…

Oh… oh, gods…

But we have it. It wasn't for nothing.

Here, help me cut it open…

I'm so sorry.

...he knew what could happen. He said he'd do what he had to for the egg.

Oh, look at it wiggle when we put it inside! It likes the warmth!

We're almost there. It's almost ready.

Soon, we'll meet the little one soon….

A living little one…

And it'll all be worth it.

It will.





It's time!

It's cracking!

Quick, get it out of the body!

Don't get rid of the body, though. It's still pretty fresh, and the little one will be hungry.

I haven't been hungry in so long…

Never mind that. Look, look!

It's cracking open!

It's…

It's just the blood from the body…

Is it?

No… no, it can't be…

No…

...oh.

...here. Here, little one. Let me clean you.

Ah?

It can't be…

It is. Look, it's white and red, not…

Ma?

Yes, little one. I'm your mama. How do you feel?

Mama!

Yes… I'm here, darling. Are you cold?

Cold?

They can't feel the cold.

Even if they're a ghost like us, at least we can still have--

Dead like us. They'll never… there's no hope for us! We'll always be like this! Dead and empty and--

Take it outside! Out of the cave. Leave the little one with their mother. Go on!

Are you hungry, little one?

Hungy? Uh-uh. Mama!

We'd… better get that body out of here.

Did we even need to keep it warm?

We had to hope.

I should have known.

We should have known better than to hope.

Those damn humans really took everything from us.

Even our future.

Damn them.

Bastards!

It might not even be a new egg. It might just be one of the eggs they took, returned to us…

Returned to us already dead.

We should have killed them all right back before we fled.

We were scared.

I'm not scared now. I'm angry.

I'm fucking furious.

So am I, but I'm not going all the way back there for revenge, no matter how much they deserve it.

Who says we have to go all the way back? There are humans right here, after all.

Different humans.

What does it matter?

We've been hiding from them just the same.

They're all the same.

They'll destroy us all, if they can. Not just kill us. Destroy us.

I won't let that happen again.

We'll just have to destroy them first.

All of them?

Of course.

If we leave even one alive, they'll come back with more.

All of them, then.

Down to the children?

They'd do the same to ours.

They did the same to ours.

That little one will never know warmth, or rest, or a full belly.

All because of them.

We'll never let it happen again.

They will pay.

All of them.

Down to the children.
 

crashcrashcrash

More like trashtrashtrash, amiright
Writer
Team Delta
Pokédex No.
3723
Caught
Feb 11, 2021
Messages
205
Location
Nimbasa City
Nature
Brave
Pokémon Type
  1. Fighting
  2. Flying
WoooOOOOoooo time to get SPOOKY

I'm not cool enough to give out individual feedback but I read all of these and everyone did a great job, omigosh

Warnings for uhhhhh wait hold on a sec
discussions of murder, mass murder, child murder, genocide, mob mentality, and arguable misuse of a dead body.
...Warning twins? Warning twins. Just replace "mob mentality" with "hivemind" and "discussions" to "depictions" and we are set

Thanks to @Flop disc for betaing! this would make even less sense without her

203.

We number over two hundred now. Two hundred lives, two hundred deaths. Two hundred souls tied together by

spite.

willpower.

love.

hunger.

We’re powerful. There are others like us, slumbering restlessly below the bedrock, still trapped together, raging against themselves. Not us. We are

strong.

incredible.

unstoppable.

unified.

superior.

We broke our own Keystone. The first 108 of us remember not how or when we got here, but we sure remember the claustrophobic tightness that bound us together for those

hundreds

thousands

of sickeningly long

days

years

decades

before the Fragmentation. None of them any longer have a name, a face, a body. Those were stolen from us upon our demises, one by one, as the earth swallowed us whole. Our bones are our only physical remains; they surround us down here, as we surround them. But there is life underground, too. There are

plants

bacteria

Pokémon

fungi

that make up our occasional meals. We free their souls from their bodies and invite them into our fold. We are fighters. We are champions. We are all knuckle and fist, ankle and thigh. We are muscle and spirit. We are

haha spirit

Shut up. We are invincible. We are one. We are over two hundred. And we are growing. We twist the neck of a Monferno that approaches one of our Medicham.

204.



This is new. We have never seen a Pokémon like this. It is

tall.

bipedal.

mammalian.

strong.

hairy.

beautiful.

appetizing.

A pair of our Machop catch sight of it. We aren’t sure what it is, but we know what it’s made of. Muscle and knuckle, ankle and fist. We make short work of it. Its

her.

Her lungs empty themselves, as all of ours have. Her blood stops running, heat leaves her skin.

205.

We were right about her soul. It’s

delectable.

savory.

unidentifiable.

new.

tantalizing.

We want another. She wasn’t a Pokémon at all, but something entirely different. A human being - who lived, until her final hours, on the surface. Who survived in the sunlight. Who walked among... Oh, there are others. Let us go, then. We will use her body as a

host.

avatar.

puppet.

What we call it is irrelevant. We have plenty of experience doing the same with Pokémon; should a human be any different? Let’s try. There’s a Croagunk. This should be

she carried weapons.

This will be easy. Nothing our prey can do could ever hurt us. Can’t poison what’s already dead. Punching meat only invites knuckle bruises. Even those of us who once had nerve endings will never feel pain again.

206.



She got down here via rope. We’ll come back the way she came. Most of us will remain beneath the bedrock, perfectly at home as we always have been. There’s more than enough energetic souls down here to

207.

to sustain ourselves for as long as we need. This excursion is a mere entertainment of our curiosity. Until now, we had no reason to leave the dark, wet tunnels and caverns we’ve always called home. But now we know the joy of human

bone

muscle

cartilage

hair

and we want so much more. Now that we have one, we know there are more. There are so many more above the ground. They are fleshy and powerless; we will consume easily. Our

208.

numbers will rise far above what we’ve ever hoped to achieve. We will become more. We will grow and feed. We will use our unstoppability to become even more perfectly dangerous. There is a world up here. We will feast. There is the light... We arrive above the crust. Once again, of course, we were right. There are many, many humans in this world. We make for the

short

dark

thin

fair

tall

one. No, let’s focus. We retreat to the shadows and scope out who looks tastiest. Is that an infant? So much life left for it, so little has it been begrimed by the living. This one will be easy. We approach, withdrawing our

fist.

pickaxe.

hammer.

blade.

withdrawing our blade. In one painless motion, we wrench the creature from its little wheeled bunker. It is so light, skin so cold. A larger human protests. We aren’t afraid; if the adult follows, it’s next. We cradle the squirming thing close to our chest. Tasty as it promises to be, it won’t stop thrashing - as if something were exploding inside of it. We can make it stop, we have this knife. We fix the infant steadily on the

ground

dirt

grass

soil

and, licking our lips, run the blade across its face. That stills it. Strange, that it doesn’t bleed... Now, eyes fixed upon the parent, we take its puny head and squash it beneath our knee. Its skull cracks like an eggshell and the stink of death wafts to our nose. Any time now, we will taste another wonderful human. We kneel, ready to embrace the young spirit, to accept it into our fold.

209.

No, that’s not it. 209 is a Heracross in the tunnels, quite far from here. Delicious, but not human. We wait for 210. We wait longer. It doesn’t come. What does come is a swift blow to our face: we recognize the attacker as a Pokémon called Graveler. A brutish type with no idea what it’s facing. It belongs to the adult, surely; Pokémon and humans have a symbiotic relationship above the surface. This we know, now that a human

210.

has joined us. No, that’s not the child either; it’s a Machop, elsewhere. Here, we absorb strike after strike as we produce our hammer. Nothing stops us from beating the Graveler into rubble. The adult looks on in horror. Others scurry away to avoid involving themselves with the failed parent. We don’t take the Graveler; we care not for it; it is weak. May its disgusting soul, if it has one, vanish into the so-called afterlife that was promised to us. This is far more fun. We

211.

Only a Riolu. The adult runs; let it. We seek the infant’s soul, but it’s

missing.

gone.

dusted.

empty.

Maybe it simply expired while we were occupied with the Graveler. Very possible. Spirits don’t remain forever after they leave the body, and we aren’t accustomed to outside resistance. The adult returns

perfect.

with a weapon. A shovel, it’s called. Raised as if to remove our head with it. We stand, unflinching, as the blow comes. We don’t bleed or bruise; we only lumber forward with the hammer ready. We are far less clumsy this time, and the adult falls. We wait for 212. We wait longer. We wait

nothing.

another minute. Longer than it’s ever

bizarre.

taken before. 212 doesn’t come. We hunger. We tighten our grip on the hammer; pick up the shovel. The adult has no observable soul either. Perhaps it’s the sunlight: we’ve never been aboveground; perhaps consuming works differently up here. We bag our weapons and seek a dark place fit for experimenting.



387.

They’re all Pokémon. All of the poor lives we added to ourselves were Pokémon, both above the earth and below. We have, of course, ended roughly the same number of human lives. It’s unnervingly easy, now that we have more bodies up here. We spread ourselves

388.

across the region, hunting down every fighter and human we can get our bony hands on. We are an army. Infernape, Medicham, Lucario, Machamp, Heracross, Toxicroak; and, naturally, their young. We roll across the region - it’s called “Sinnoh” - like a thundering wave, a flight of fists and teeth and bone. We

slash

choke

incinerate

impale

detonate

drown

skewer

decapitate

even the most powerful of the humans. Not a single one joins us. Hundreds, maybe thousands of Pokémon fall to the same fate. We care not to count them, the ones that we deem too feeble for our collective. Soon, we

389.

reach to every corner of Sinnoh. Our overflow grows; we are in no danger. Yet not a single human life joins us. In the

sunlight

shadow

land

water

cold

swamp

do we do our work. None of it takes. But we have a human already, we have one, and we want more. We need more. We will take more. No matter

390.

391.


what we have to do to get them, how many we must free from their mortality to feed from them. There is by now

392.

a group of survivors rallying themselves against us. Of this we are brutally aware. They are too quick to kill; too smart to corner. They flee not only with their lives but with

393.

the knowledge we need. Somehow they know

394.

about what we are, how we operate. Yet they are unwilling to join us. They have

395.

a leader, somewhere. This we were told by the first miserable human to wander into our domain, the only one clever enough to take our offer. From her, we recognize the symbols marking

396.

the survivors’ compounds. We comprehend the languages they speak. They call themselves Team Galactic and

397.

398.


unwisely establish bases far too close to the edges of their towns. They camp in armed warehouses and protect themselves with futile wards. Whatever they

399.

are doing is for themselves simply a placebo. No matter what they or we do about it, we can’t consume their souls up here. Not if the pattern holds. We’ll sure try, of

400.

course. We’ll tear them limb from limb if it means finding the one who knows. Who

401.

knows what we are. They say to themselves “destroy the hivemind” and send their Pokémon against ours.

402.

They shouldn’t know about that. We certainly didn’t tell them.

403.



835.

Interesting.

836.

We aren’t the only killers, after all. We have

837.

long since stopped bothering with Team Galactic; they are the most powerful of the remaining humans, and the grudge

838.

839.


they bear is personal. There are plenty of other human lives ripe for the taking. Until, strangely, we witness one of these so-called warriors, these Galactics, commanding

840.

a Gabite to sever the head of another human. The poor thing was not one of theirs, but apparently it was famous in life. We no longer concern ourselves with names, but we know this one’s. It was, at one time, Volkner. Now it is merely a stain on the street.

841.

Is it not fascinating, how humans do not bleed? Not like Pokémon do. The insides of a human are completely alien to us, or were before we ventured into the sunlight. The fraction of us that remembers being human is just as perplexed by this as the rest of us, but we have nothing to fear. We are, after all,

842.

unstoppable.

843.

844.


But we are also curious. Why kill another human? What is this goon trying to accomplish? Only one of us, of course, has taken their form. We are their enemies, the fighters. The Pokémon. We can’t animate human bodies, we can only try. It is simply doing our job for us. We await the soul of the killed, but once again it is gone. No longer a surprise. But still - humans killing each other? Perhaps in the wake of a world overrun by such mad greatness as us, they realize they have no choice but to

845.

846.

847.


eliminate any who are unfit to fight back. Very

846.

What.

845.

844.


WHAT.

843.

We lose sight of the Gabite and his trainer. All of us in the vicinity of the Galactic soldier vanish, as if we were never even killed. We

842.

There are more of them. Our invincibility is being questioned. They are stealing us! They are fighting back! Fine. We will show them what we are.

843.

844.

845.


...

Those were humans. Galactic members. Finally; how ironic that they, the resistance, would be the first to cooperate. What can they tell us? They are delicious and savory as they had always promised to be. But why now? Why, suddenly, are these souls so ripe for the

846.

847.


...

.....

That’s why.



We know where their leader is now. Finding it is no longer our priority. We know too much, far more than we should. We never should have left the underground. We were safe. We were

685.

unstoppable.

684.

Now, we’re prey.

683.

We were never the ones to be feared. We are but the

682.

fragile outliers of a terrible pattern of souls bound to Keystones and hungering for more. The Fragmentation made us

681.

680.


feel invincible. But we never were. We never were the biggest threat these people faced, we were a mere nuisance spectating a war that had been raging for

days

weeks

months

before we’d first ventured from the belly of the earth. We aren’t the first Spiritomb to be freed from its Keystone, to kill every human in sight, to possess their bodies like dolls. We

679.

aren’t the hivemind.

678.

Sinnoh is.

677.

676.

675.

674.




The leader of Team Galactic is dead. He volunteered his life to us in the hopes that his knowledge would help us locate and reseal Sinnoh’s Keystone. So that his comrades may come to know a life without fear of death around every corner.

193.

We are struggling poorly. We fight, we blaze, we strike through every

192.

obstacle that Sinnoh throws at us. Sometimes it wins. Sometimes we escape. Sinnoh massacres us with every step we take towards its Keystone, but we have no choice. Most of us are underground, and once it knows that

191.

the rest of us are doomed. Sinnoh numbers in the millions. We

190.

are less than two hundred.

189.

But we only need as many of us as it takes to reach its Keystone. Protected by another renowned human, at one time seen cloaked in black and conducting ferocious battles with such horrifying Pokémon as

Garchomp.

Lucario.

Spiritomb.

That was before, of course. This trainer, this Cynthia, she was an archeologist. The one who originally unearthed

188.

the Keystone of what later became the Sinnoh region. It never underwent a Fragmentation, as we did; its seal was removed by the same foolish human, reading from a forbidden tome in a language she understood not. Her death was quick and likely painless, the first of many. Far too many

and that’s coming from us.

to count. So we must go, with whatever avatars we can retain, to her chamber and

187.

186.

187.


We need power. We need more. We feed from the life underground for as long as we

186.

It seems futile. But we go. We go out of

spite.

hope.

love.

delusion.

fear.

It doesn’t matter. We go.

187.

186.




135.

We won’t even make it to Cynthia’s chamber at this rate.



128.

Only twenty of our overflow remain. We

127.

Nineteen. We are not unstoppable. We are not invincible. We know not what we are doing, only that we must do it. The opponent

126.

ate an entire nation. We are just the fighters that stumbled onto its plate. Skin and bone. Never bleeding. Already dead.

125.

Yet we must go.



111.

It is too powerful. Our numbers are dwindling. We cannot keep up.

110.

Only two remain. A Medicham punctures the Galactic leader’s gut with a kick. A shiver runs through all of us as his soul vanishes.

109.

Only one more.

We swing the pickaxe round the back of that thing’s skull. It crumbles into a heap.

110.

It was... alive? Curious. We accept this. We

109.

...We got distracted.

An Alakazam stands across from us; only our Medicham remains above the ground. Freshly downed, blood still dripping from the back of his head. But we stand up. We push forward. We gather the only soul we have left into a spectral ball, and we launch ourselves at the last Pokémon separating us from Cynthia’s chamber.

The Alakazam bends. The trainer smirks.

We return to Medicham. We prepare another attack, just in case it

108.

...

.....

....................................................................................................

107.

NO.

106.

NO!!

105.

NO NO NO NO NO NO NO!!!

104.

103.

102.


NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO!!!!!!!!!!!!!

101.

100.


IT FOUND US!!!

99.

IT’S DOWN HERE. IN OUR REALM. IT’S UNDERGROUND AND IT’S

98.

KILLING US!!!!!!!

97.

WE ARE DOOMED! WE ARE

96.

We... We must fight. That is what we are. That is what we do. We will fight.

95.

94.

95.

94.

93.


It is strong. So are we! We are

92.

muscle and ankle

91.

spirit and bone.

90.

No.

89.

We are already dead.

88.

87.




64.

63.

62.

61.




23.

22.

21.

20.

19.


We were over eight hundred, once.



5.

4.

3.

2.


We were their last hope.

1.

Weren’t we?
Based on a mono-fighting locke of Brilliant Diamond. No dupes clause we collect Machop like stamps. Went really well until I was left without a Heracross for Lucian, whose Medicham took out most of my party and Alakazam finished me off. Not really sure how I made the jump from "failed fighting-type nuzlocke" to "zombie apocalypse but with Spiritomb" but here we are, folks, hope it made some sort of sense.
 

bhelryss

rose cultivator
Writer
Team Delta
Pokédex No.
4768
Caught
Jul 7, 2021
Messages
1,154
Location
in the sunshine
Nature
Gentle
Pronouns
they/them
Pokémon Type
  1. Grass
  2. Fairy
Pokédex Entry
this pokemon can be found encouraging plant growth in other people's gardens, but can be territorial about the resulting blooms
october is the month of spooky and our most recent pokemon popcorn event was halloween themed! strange house and dark types were our general prompt, and here's what we came up with!

  1. When it's your turn, write 75 words MAXIMUM. No Minimum, but make sure you're giving the next person something to work with.
  2. Read ONLY the sentences of the person immediately preceding you.
  3. When you've finished your turn, edit the text of the person before you to the smallest possible font size and turned white, leaving only your text readable.
  4. Check the pins to see who is next in the order. Please DM them a direct link to the google doc and also @ them in the channel so the GM can keep track.
  5. Don't be cheeky and peek at other pieces! The point of this is not to be coherent, it's #adventure!
  6. Every round, when the the piece returns to the GM, they will randomize the order of writers for the next round as much as possible. Ideally, you will always be passing to somebody in an earlier timezone, to keep the thing moving.
  7. If you don't respond within twelve hours of receiving the piece, it'll be passed on to the next person in the round. You will still be included in the next round. Life happens, stuff gets in the way, things slip, no judgement, we're just keeping it moving. You can also elect to pass if you don't think you'll be able to get to it within the next twelve hours for whatever reason.
  8. Piece will be started at 00:01 GMT, August 1st, and end at 23:59 GMT, August 21st.
  9. After closing, participants will get to read the piece and decide if we want to post it to Creative Content or the like.
  10. Have fun!
here were our rules!

warning for character death

The door creaks open like someone specifically tightened the hinges to get it to groan and sigh under pressure. In the evening’s fading light, they stamp off the worst of the mud on their boots before stepping inside. The air is stale, and despite the chill still warmer than outside. “Hello?”

Gothita beeps, and they look down at her. “What? It’s cold outside, and the door was unlocked. It’s fine! We won’t wander.

“Yet!”

It takes a lot of willpower for Morgan to restrain themself from jumping at the new voice, which definitely isn’t theirs. After a startled moment, they compose themself and wait, still just within the door.

The voice doesn’t return.

“Welp,” Morgan mutters to themself. “I’m… going to assume I imagined that until proven otherwise.”

Gothita beeps again, and when Morgan turns back to her she’s shaking her head.

Morgan sighs. “So… you heard that too.”

The Gothita turns her head toward the hallway where the voice had likely come from.

“That’s not exactly where…” Morgan says, but trails off when their Pokemon waddles in that direction. “Of course, you’re going after it. You know, I could stop you.” The trainer easily catches up to their Pokemon and follows. “I could call you back into your ball. But I guess we’ll have to deal with the mysterious voice sooner or later.”

This hallway definitely seems decided on not ending. Morgan certainly isn’t afraid, no, but… somehow the wooden floor seems… too quiet. It’s exactly the kind of floor you’d expect to be creaking ominously at every step, and yet, not a sound.

Not a sound in the entire house, actually, apart from theirs and Gothita’s. As if the disembodied voice from before had taken every noise away with it.   

Despite everything, though, the silence was deafening. It made their heartbeat pound in Morgan’s head, and they almost stopped breathing several times, in fear that the noise would echo through the house and attract unwanted attention.

Attention from what?

They didn’t voice the question; they doubted Gothita would know any better than they did. Instead, they walked, and took their voice with them.

In silence, Morgan and Gothita moved into the kitchen. They opened the fridge, where all the sandwiches were, and saw the expiry date was 10 years ago - yet they looked so fresh. Something seemed off about them, and it wasn’t just the date.

“I’m so hungry… but these sandwiches are a decade off. And yet… They entice me.” quivered Morgan.

“You better not take a bite out of that sandwich!” warned Gothita.

“Eh, I dunno, expiry dates are just advice,” said Morgan. “They’re not laws, they’re always a bit premature just to protect people from themselves.”

“My dude,” replied the gothita, “They are TEN YEARS past their expiry.”

“I’mma try one anyway,” said Morgan as they reached into the fridge and took out a sandwich. The moment they picked it up, it disintegrated into ash and fell through their fingers. “Well, that bites.”

“No,” the Gothita sighed. “You don’t bite. That’s the whole--you know what, let’s just leave.” A wall of psychic energy formed between Morgan and the fridge, pushing them firmly towards the open kitchen door.

Then all the lights shut off, even the light inside the fridge. “Did you do that?” Morgan asked, waving a hand where they’d last seen the Gothita.

“You know I can’t see in the dark either, why would I turn them off?” the Gothita replied, and they heard it echoing from all directions, unable to figure out where their pokémon was.

“This is not funny!” Morgan shivered, considering why their pokémon would resort to such a prank. “I’ll buy you a sandwich when we get out of here!”

“Ha, you won’t!”

The voice replying belonged to neither of them.

“Gothita? I know you didn’t just-”

The voice only laughed, a deep and ugly laugh that Morgan struggled to believe could come out of their little Pokemon. Just to be sure, they lifted her Poke ball, returning her.

“Making yourself even more defenseless, are you? Not the smartest,” continued the voice.

Just as quickly, Morgan slammed Gothita’s ball back to the ground. “Okay, we’re definitely not alone,” they finally relented, as the child materialized.

Morgan didn’t know what they expected the child ghost to look like. Old clothes, either from being torn and tattered. A stereotypical outfit from a few hundred years ago. But the child that appeared wouldn’t have been out of place in the modern day. Well, aside from the fact that he had no eyes.

“It’s… nice to meet you?” Morgan asked hesitantly.

“Most of the people I meet don’t think it’s nice,” he said.

Awkwardly, they scratched at their elbow. “Well that’s unfortunate.” A blink, and the little ghost boy is right there by their side. “I’m sure they’re just frightened?”

As No-eyes nodded the shadows shifted around the room despite the steady light source. “There’s so many reasons to be afraid. Should I show you?”

“No! No, I’m alright, there’s no need.”

No-eyes covered his mouth with his sleeve, and laughed. A dry, rotted sound. “Let’s play, okay?”

You know what? Morgan thinks to themself. Sure. I’ll humor him.

“Alright. What manner of game…?” They trail off, seeing that No-eyes is nowhere in sight.

The ghost boy’s voice still remains, though, echoing now through the room. Or, more accurately, that laugh, that deathly rotten laugh of his, perhaps of amusement at Morgan’s eyes flitting around the room.

“Come and catch me… if you can… little Morgan.”

Little…! What in Distortion is this kid?!

Morgan scoped around the room, trying to find the source of that condescending ghost child’s voice.

Alright… I just have to think like a Zubat trying to find its prey.

“Over here… or am I here? Or am I here?” his voice echoed from seemingly every direction.

“How am I meant to echolocate when he won’t shut up?!”

“You don’t.” warned Gothita, “I can sense by his voice this kid is rotten to the core!”

“Hey!! That's mean! YOU shut up!!”
Morgan immediately opened their mouth to retort; nothing came out.
They blinked, bewildered. Tried speaking again. Didn't make a sound.

A panicked look was cast at Gothita. Her telepathic voice resonated in Morgan’s head.
“What? …Did he do something…?”
Vague gestures at their throat.
“Oh, bloody hell.”

Trying to find an apparently disembodied voice was already hard enough, and now it could even hinder them directly?   

So they couldn’t speak. Okay. Just like a regular cold... Morgan’s mind raced to rationalize any of what they were experiencing.

“Hah! That’s more like it!” came the voice again. “Now... you have something I want, teehee!”

Morgan whipped around as Gothita’s squeals grew distant. No! It was taking her - no!!

That’s it!

In the pitch black, Morgan did what they always did when things didn’t go their way: they sent out their Zweilous.

Zuul and Vinz looked around the dark, empty hall, then shook their heads. One of them barked its confusion.

“I don’t know what or where it is,” Morgan said hurriedly, “but Gothita’s in trouble! We’ve got to save her!”

The Zweilous nodded, then leapt into the shadows.

“Well isn’t that nice, someone else to play with! Two for the price of one!”

Morgan gritted their teeth as the laugh echoed across the room.

However, they refused to respond, instead staring defiantly into the void, waiting for Zweilous to come back with Gothita in tow. Any second now...they would both be safe...

It was only supposed to be a minute, but that minute turned into a handful, then even more. After what felt like a full hour, the dread of failure finally started to creep in. Maybe it was pointless. Maybe they had just signed Zweilous to-

A sparkling flash glimmered in the air as the gothita teleported into the room. Alone.

“Gothita!” exclaimed Morgan as they ran over to the psychic-type. “Are you hurt? Where’s zweilous?”

The gothita looked up, her eyes wet with tears. “Gone! Disappeared! Dead!” she shouted. “They’re all gone. There’s no-one here but us!”

Yesss… nobody but usssss…

“MORGAN, RUN!” the Gothita screamed, eyes glowing with psychic energy. Morgan didn’t see what she was attacking, but they didn’t stop to look. They’d never heard the composed psychic sound so scared.

They ran as fast as they could, pursued by the Gothita’s frantic screaming and a strange, howling cackle that made their hair stand on end.

“Gothita!” Morgan cried, sprinting away just as ordered. They wanted to turn, they wanted to look. They wanted so badly to scoop her up and flee. That laugh…that horrible laugh keeps them from doing it though. Tears streamed down their face, but they don’t slow to scrub them away.

The tears are cold and freezing on their face with fear.

Bzzt, the sound of teleport, and Morgan sobbed again in relief. Gothita escaped too.

Now it’s just them.

Morgan narrowly avoids a levitating table, then ducks just in time to get through an unusually low door frame. It’s as if the whole house is trying to slow them down, and the laughter reminds them just how bad that would be.

“What are you?!” they cry. “Are you a pokemon or what? I don’t want to catch you! I want to go home!”

“Oh, you want to go hooome?” repeats the voice. “Isn’t there something you’re missing?”

“G-Give Zweilous back! I’m not leaving without him!!”

The voice laughs. “Okay then.”

Something rubs against their leg - could it be? In the low light, there was nothing Morgan wanted to see more than - wait - yes, that’s him!

“Zweilous!” they cried. “You’re ba-”

In his second mouth was an arm. A human arm, severed at the elbow.

“I’m sorry, Morgan…” whispered Zweilous. “I was just so hungry.”

He swallowed the arm whole and spat up the bones. Zweilous eyed Morgan, hungry. This had to be a sick joke, or perhaps a possession. Maybe they were dreaming. Why would their friend suddenly turn on them like this?

Before they could come up with a solution to ease their mind, they noticed that Zweilous and the ghost were no longer in the same spot.

The ghost watched on as Zwelious slowly stepped toward Morgan, hunger in its eyes.

“No,” Morgan said, slowly backing away. “Stop it, stop doing this to Zwelious!”

But the ghost did nothing. “I’m not in there anymore, this is all up to your Pokemon now.”

Morgan turned to their Pokemon. “Look, whatever feelings that ghost gave you, whatever it did to you, that's over. It’s not real, it’s all in your head!”

“I’m… still… hungry…”

Morgan started to back up, only to find themself pressed up against a shelf they were certain wasn’t there before. They scrambled for an idea, any idea, as to how to deal with this ghost-induced rampage, but was quickly interrupted by their Zweilous snapping at them.

“AAAAGH!” Pain radiates through their arm from where fangs had dug into their left hand.

Zweilous’s other head snapped forward as well… and hit its target -- the first head.

“Thanks.” Morgan whispered more to himself than to the Gothita, glad for the intervention as the Zweilous was now fighting itself, one head trying to bite the other off the body. Their left hand was bleeding from the last attack, but it didn't stop them, trying to find a way to escape from that mess.

The problem started when the third head grew from the Zweilous' body — the Hydreigon, rather, snapping out of confusion.

All three heads turned to Morgan and the Gothita, three pairs of blood-red eyes opening, three fanged grins widening. The Hydreigon spread its wings, like flaring tendrils of darkness, and let out a discordant roar of triumph.

I should run, Morgan thought, but they felt paralyzed, unable to tell their body to move. I don’t want to die here!

“You’re not going to,” a strange voice said as a clawed hand gripped their shoulder.

Morgan turned to find themself looking into the soulless blue eyes of Darkrai. “H-have you come to save me?”

“No. You cannot be saved,” said Darkrai.

“What?” asked Morgan, only to feel a searing pain in their shoulder. Where Darkrai’s claw had been, the area was now turning black as necrosis set in. The darkness began to spread down Morgan’s arm and across their chest.

Darkrai lowered its head. “Because you are already dead.”

Silence.

Then, Morgan begins to chuckle.

“You laugh at death?” asks Darkrai with narrow eyes.

As the dark necrosis covers Morgan’s other arm and reaches up their neck, they snap their fingers to summon a blue flame. “No, I’m laughing at you. I thought something might attack me, so I had one of my pokémon set up a Destiny Bond for me before I entered this room.”

“You… NO! That’s impossible!”

“Oh, it’s very possible, my friend.” A few indigo wisps seep out of Morgan’s form, rushing forward to surround Darkrai.

“NO! NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO…!

The wisps punch into the Pitch-Black Pokémon, and within a few instants it has dissipated entirely.

Morgan exhales. “Thanks for the Destiny Bond, Elgyem.”

Their next attempt at words is cut off by a strained cough, the necrotic ravaging of most of their body re-asserting its existence.

“Now to deal with this…”
Another cough. They can feel their consciousness starting to waver.
“Oh come on… surely it can’t be that bad, I just have to- pull myself t--togeth-”

Morgan notices they are now lying on the ground even though they don’t remember falling.
Oh well. Fuck this, is their last thought as they black out, unable to notice the towering ursine figure slowly approaching…   



When Morgan regains consciousness, they immediately bolt awake. Last they knew they were about to be torn apart by a weird looking Ursaring.

“My Pokemon!” Morgan reaches to their side to find all of their Pokemon gone. “Where are they?”

“You may get them back,” comes the voice of the ghost child. “But you will have to earn them.”

It is only then that Morgan realizes they are somewhere very different from the haunted house.

“What?” Morgan looks around, trying to pinpoint the ghost child. “They’re my Pokemon!”

Morgan turns in circles, moving towards any flash of color before it seemingly Teleports away again. “Where are they!”

The sound of their own rapid heartbeat covers up the silence laying heavy about the walls and shadows, and tiny trees growing up through the floor in places.

“Trick or treat,” the child says, right into their ear.

The scream that erupts from Morgan is shrill, and the child cackles as it disappears once more into the darkness. The sound fades, but silence doesn’t cover them; rather, maniacal laughter is replaced with crying, audible sobbing that resonates from within the walls themselves.

They pause. That’s not the sound of any human.

No, that’s the sound of their pokemon.

Not my Gothita!


Morgan ran towards their pokémon cry, whichever direction they thought the sound was coming from. If anything happened… No, they didn’t want to think about it.

They conveniently found a crowbar hanging in one of the wooden walls, and started hitting it with all of their might, tearing a hole big enough to crawl into. Which Morgan just did, unaware of the creature holding their Gothita hostage just behind them.

“Looking for ssssomething?” the monster hissed, flicking its tongue against the trainer’s ear.

Morgan shivered and tightened their grip on the crowbar, before turning to face the hideous, other-worldly voice. They could see the outline of their gothita, but the swirling mists obscured the enemy. “Let her go!”

They couldn’t see it, but Morgan knew that, somewhere in the darkness, the creature was smiling. “What could you possssssssibly do to me? I’m jusssssssst a memory.”

“Yeah, and I fight my memories all the time,” Morgan spat, swinging the crowbar at where they thought the voice was coming from.

They hit nothing, and the mists curled with laughter. “Ah, but have you ever won?

“First time for everything,” Morgan said stubbornly, and closed their eyes.

They could no longer feel the mists, which probably weren’t even real. In their self-imposed darkness, they felt, and they listened.

There!

Morgan struck, burying their weapon into… something. It was firm and unyielding, but it certainly wasn’t part of the house. They grunted with effort as they tried to push it further in. A bloodcurdling scream echoed around the room, but this only confirmed they’d struck some sort of weak point; a chance like this might never present itself again!

“Had enough?” Morgan asked the voice, ready to run if it tried another move.

The scream continued, becoming breathier until Morgan realized: that wasn’t the house. Someone else was here.

...What exactly did they just plunge their knife into?

The scream morphed into a wail, then a sob. Familiar... NO. Morgan yanked the knife from its notch and cast it to the floor.

“Wahahah!” That was the house. “See for yourself!”

A dim light flickered on, only bright enough to confirm Morgan’s fear: their mother, clutching her bleeding stomach.

“Mor… gan…”

They stumble forward, reaching out for their mother… as her form shifts and changes into that of a Raticate, the illusion dispelling. Still bleeding from where Morgan had stabbed them, but definitely a Raticate and not their mother and they didn’t just stab their mom and

“Oh, thank the gods.” They sink down to their knees.

The house starts laughing again. “Oh, we got you GOOD! We oughta do that one more often…”

Morgan doesn’t answer. The incessant cackling noise surrounding them from every direction doesn’t reach their ears anymore, slowly drowned out by some kind of buzzing feeling growing inside them.

Enough. That’s what the feeling is. They’ve had ENOUGH.
They stand up, completely ignoring the bleeding Raticate, clutching the knife in their hand, walking up to the nearest wall, and they stab it.

The cackling stops. Morgan doesn’t notice.
They stab again. And again. And again.   

The knife tears through the “wall” easily, with just enough resistance to satisfy Morgan’s anger. It droops down like tired wallpaper, even the parts that look like wooden frames.

Morgan seethes at the void beyond the wall. With a look back, Morgan sees that the bleeding Raticate is gone.

With a flutter all four walls fall, leaving Morgan in an empty void. “THAT’S IT!” they shout. “I’M DONE WITH THIS! WHERE ARE YOU?!?”

Silence.

“Well, since you asked so nicely.” a voice booms from… underneath them?!

Though the floor was pitch black, Morgan could see a faint shadow oozing from their feet. They gasped as they swore they could see what was unmistakably a face smiling back at them!

There was no way! Were all the violent illusions and mind tricks the source of a Pokemon stronger than Morgan could have ever anticipated?

They panicked, trying to stomp on the face. The shadows splashed away like a puddle of oil, reforming on the wall in front of them.

“Well,” the strange Pokemon said in their deep, resonant voice, “that was rude, wasn’t it?”

In for a penny, in for a pound, Morgan thought, and spat, “fuck you. Where are my Pokemon?”

“Why,” the Pokemon laughed as they began to manifest limbs, “they’re exactly where you left them.

“They're not!” Morgan shouted back as the creature took a vulpine shape — a Zoroark. “Stop with the games and give them back!”

“You still don't understand? You left your pokémon behind to hunt me…” the creature laughed again. “Now, tell me, what do you plan on doing now you found me?”

Morgan rushed forward, their temper also left behind, intending to punch the pokémon; surprisingly landing a hit on it but regretting it immediately after.

Morgan had just punched a zoroark. They expected it to feel muscular and firm, so why did it feel wet and slimy?

In their rage, Morgan had shut their eyes, but on opening them, they found that their fist was buried in purple sludge. With the realisation came a burning sensation and Morgan hurriedly yanked their fist out as the zoroark collapsed in on itself, taking on the form of a Kantonian muk instead.

“Bold of you to assume my identity,” the now gooey pokemon said. “Now, let's try again, what do you plan on doing without help?”

Morgan shrieked, considering the prankster creature in front of them could be a Ditto after they saw its last trick. As such, it would need its captives alive. Including their Gothita.

But how to test that without their trusty pokemon?

There was only one way to do it.

Morgan reached for their belt and quietly unclipped an empty pokéball.

“Hey, you, ugly,” they shouted, keeping their hand near their belt. “If you’re so powerful, prove it! Transform into a mighty charizard and then into a lowly magikarp. I think you’ve just got a few cheap tricks and nothing more!”

Morgan kept a firm grip on the ball, ready to throw the moment this shapeshifter took on a weaker form. “I’m waiting,” they goaded.

“Hmph. If you insist, mortal.”

As promised, the shapeshifter’s form began to blur, contracting on itself before expanding back outwards as the figure of a Charizard.

Morgan nodded in approval. “Alright, now--whoa!” They jumped to the right, only barely avoiding a blast of flame coming their way but landing prone on the ground.

As I was saying… neat! So you’re actually legit… now come on. Show me the true range of your power! Magikarp time!”

"No. Enough foolishness." The shapeshifter morphed back into a more human form, scowling at Morgan as they stood up and brushed themself off. "I'm not mere entertainment, child."

While that was true, Morgan couldn't help but droop at the refusal. "Fine, fine, but can you at least, uh, get me out of this place?"

The shapeshifter stared at them, seemed to think about it- which, frankly, was further from a 'no' than Morgan thought they'd get.

The shapeshifter considered Morgan. “I suppose I don’t need to be stuck with you here forever. I’ll help you, on one condition.”

“Anything!”

“I want your form,” the shapeshifter said.

“What?”

“Your form, your likeness,” the shapeshifter explained. “I want to look as you do now, which is something you need to freely give.”

Morgan narrowed their eyes. “I don’t have much of a choice.”

“Still. What do you say? Do you want to leave?”

Morgan didn’t answer right away. They looked at their sinister surroundings, then back to the shapeshifter.

“If I give you my form… could you give me a new one?”

“Oh?”
“To be honest, there’s a lot about me I’d change,” Morgan admitted as they gestured at themself. “I don’t feel like going into detail, especially if you say no… but if I agree to this, can I be somebody else? Of my choosing?”

The shapeshifter blinked a few times, eyes wide open.
Morgan sighed. “Ah, well. Figured you wouldn't-”

The other shifted into a Nickit and started hopping excitedly.
“No, no!” they laughed. “It's great, nobody's asked me that before! That's so fun!”

Before Morgan think over their decision any longer, the “Nickit” shifted into a Thievul and gave them an inquisitive look.
“So, a new form in exchange for yours… well? Whadya wishin for?”   

“I wish…” Ideas flicked through their mind like a slideshow: rich, handsome, a were-houndoom, taller, magical, Kalosian, a Champion, popular, a genius. “For more wishes?”

“Try again, ya cheater.”

Morgan pouted for a second, then shrugged. “C’mere?” The “Thievul” obliged, coming close enough for Morgan to whisper their choice. “Can you do that?”

“I might!” With a wink, a great and joyous smile split the “Thievul’s” face in two. “One new friend coming right up!”

The Thievul dissipated into the shadows, and in its place stood none other than Morgan’s lost Gothita.

What a miracle! Morgan flung out their arms, inviting her into an embrace. They were together again. They could be safe.

They could be safe...

Except for that the telekinetic little thing in Morgan’s arms was not their Gothita at all.

Morgan didn’t feel a thing as their neck snapped backwards and their body slumped to the floor.

thanks to @SayleeK @crashcrashcrash @Leon Yorunaki @Black Viper @CasualGameFreak @DIO @theCape @Kirilish and @Vivace @Rubombee for joining us this go around C:
 
Last edited:
OP
SayleeK

SayleeK

Johto League Champion
Writer
Screenshotter
Team Delta
Pokédex No.
260
Caught
Jul 1, 2019
Messages
2,135
Location
Scrivener
Nature
Careful
Pronouns
She/her
Pokémon Type
  1. Fire
  2. 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
Thank you so much to everyone who submitted! I won't be adding any more submissions to the top post, but it's time to leave comments here for the spoopy stories you liked! (Which should be all of them, we got some GOOD stories this year!)

@Vivace wow, that battle got INCREDIBLY crunchy, it had me genuinely unsure who was going to win for a second due to the power of the Chaos Emeralds… should've known better than to bet against Tech, even for a second!

@Black Viper oooohhhhh, this is a fantastic classic ghost story. A horrible wrong is done, and retribution is dealt indiscriminately in that place. The kids hear the ghost story, they get a chance to heed the warning, but they ignore it and forge on, and frankly they're lucky that only one wound up dead as a result. Love the hell out of the worldbuilding and environmental details that went into it, too!

@JavierE64 ahhh… good ol' propaganda… the real horror is biased media whipping up a hate mob, huh 😬

@Kit_The_Feef Honestly this is really a sweet wee story about lineage and history and ghosts? Really like this <3

@crashcrashcrash this is POETRY, oh my god, this is a FASCINATING perspective for something like a zombie apocalypse, an undead hivemind trying to absorb the country and finding out they're not the most dangerous thing out there… holy shit I'm gonna be thinking about this one for AGES!

@bhelryss thanks so much for running this game, this one turned out great!
 

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