The Road to Indigo (Pokemon RP (Closed): Chapter 7: Dead Living On The Radio...)

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Jordan watched Fary walk out of the gym with Rochelle. She says that, but she's not staying to watch me fight this dude? Bro, I just don't know anymore. I just don't know.

He turned his attention back to the battlefield, trying to get his mind off of what he just saw happening. The blonde girl was about to take the field. It looked like it truly was ladies first at this gym.

Once Rochelle and Fary were out of the Gym, the two started in the direction of the Pokémon Center. As they walked, Rochelle tried brushing some of the sand out of her hair to little avail. Giving up and deciding to wait until she had access to a shower, she soon felt the need to fill the silence that had started up. "Um, Fary... I have to ask this. Do you... do you always flirt with guys who take an interest in you? First Jordan, now Brock... it's kinda weird, at least to me. But then, I don't really know much and you seem to know what you're doing."

"Hu? Oh that, well I like Jordan and think I can get some from Jordan and I know Jordan feels the same way about me. As for Brock, well I feel like flirting with Brock for the fun of it and it's not cheating if Jordan and I are just hooked up for now." Fary said.

"I don't flirt with every guy that hits on me, really more the ones that I see having potential, both guys and girls. Fact is I've only had sex with one guy and only one boyfriend." Fary said.

"I see... Yeah, I've never gotten into that sort of thing. Which is why I kept patiently refusing Brock's advances and concentrating on the battle," Rochelle answered, looking at the ground in front of her as she walked, lost in thought and speaking her subsequent thoughts aloud. "I mean, I'm open to starting a relationship... y'know, with a guy... but I don't know about what it's like or how it's done or anything like that." She paused for a couple of minutes as the two of them entered the Pokémon Center and handed over their Pokémon to be healed up by the nurse on call.

"But yeah... I don't really know what else to say," Rochelle noted as she took a seat, scratching at her collarbone a little. Fary's influence had started her thinking about guys and what it was to be in a relationship with one. There were two guys in their little group that weren't already taken - Tyler and Simon - if she counted Jordan because he was technically with Fary. But Rochelle didn't know what she would think if she... well, hooked up with one of those two. Both seemed like good guys, but she had only known them a couple of days. That didn't really seem like enough time to get to know them that well; although the two couples in the group seemed to differ.

"Meh just something you develop as you go really. I was really unlucky as a teen when it came to getting dates until I meet my ex when I was 15, we were dating almost as soon as we meet up to the time I was 20. That's when he left of his Pokemon journey. Jordan is nothing like my ex and I think that's what drew me to him." Fary said thinking some.

"If you what I can help." she said to Rochelle. "Oh god I hope we get back in time for me to see Jordan fight." Fary said looking worried.

"I guess I could use a few pointers... although not just yet. All of this sand is starting to irritate me. Need to clean up," Rochelle stated, picking up her pack and hefting it onto a shoulder. "I'm gonna go see if they have a shower or something here. I'll be right back," she added. With that Rochelle headed for one of the side doors of the Pokémon Center, marked Accommodation. She knew that all Pokémon Centers supplied food and lodgings at no charge; it stood to reason that they would have some kind of facilities for basic hygienic needs.

Sure enough, there was a shower block across the hall from the room in which a few carefully made beds stood waiting for occupants. Rochelle poked her head around the door to find the showers to be devoid of human life. Perfect. She headed back to the main hall of the Pokémon Center, told Fary that she had found what she was looking for, and was under a strong spray of water within a few minutes of returning to the shower block. She figured that it would take a fair bit longer for her Pokémon to be healed than she would take to have a shower, dry herself off and deal with her sandy clothes.

Rochelle was actually quite surprised at how much sand had gotten under her clothing and into her hair; it was good that she had enough clothes for at least a week. Thankfully none of it had gotten into her backpack during the sandstorm; it would have been hell to clean out the pack properly.

Terinth watched as Aeris, Fary, and Rochelle each took their turns battling Brock, all of them ending successfully. Terinth walked up to Brock, just as he walked away from Rochelle.

"Hello there, little girl, did you get lost on the way home?" Brock said, in as rude of a voice as he could.

"Screw off. Let's get this over with." Terinth said, trying to hold back yelling at him. " Monk, Puppy, we have someone who needs to be taught a lesson." She said, tossing their pokeballs into the air, watching as the red beams of light morphed the pokemon into view.

"I'll pity you and and your weak pokemon. Ah well, I guess everyone's dreams have to end early. I'll be using Geodude and Rhyhorn. To make it fair, I'll let you go first." Brock said.

"Puppy, use Bite on the Geodude! Monk, Low Kick the Rhyhorn!" Terinth commanded, watching them charge forward, then hearing Brock call out his commands.

"Geodude, use Tackle! Rhyhorn, use Horn Attack!" Brock shouted out. As the two sets of pokemon charged at each other, Brock's pokemon almost tried to charge into the attacks. Both of Terinth's pokemon's attacks connected with their marks. Puppy latched on as best it could, with Geodude trying to shake off the pokemon angrily. Rhyhorn's Horn missed the Low Kick attack completely, and Rhyhorn took a direct shot to the face with a Low Kick. As Geodude shook Puppy off, Rhyhorn was charging Mankey for a second attack. The weaker Mankey was sent tumbling back, right at Terinth's feet. Just afterwards, Terinth saw the Geodude pick up a medium-sized rock, and throw it at Puppy, with the rock hitting it square in the jaw. This assault continued, with both Terinth and Brock continuing the same pattern of moves. Finally, Terinth's pokemon had taken their final shots. Being tackled into the wall and getting pelted in the head to many times with rocks had finally taken it's toll on Puppy and Monk, and they both collapsed, unconscious. Brock's pokemon were not far off, barely able to stand, and Terinth collected her pokemon. After doing so, she saw Brock walking towards, with a smirk on his face. As he neared he started saying something.

After leaving the gym Simon walked back to the Poké Mart. He purchased a few more items in preparation for the boss battle. He also purchased a few items 'just because'. Something about seeing the gym made him want to be prepared for as much as he could. In the end Simon ended up with more potions, some antidotes, something that claimed to heal paralysis, something that woke Pokémon up, and two of the foul-smelling bottles of repellant. The Poké Mart attendant was nice enough to put those in a separate bag.

Simon and Shadow wandered the town for a bit, looking for Pokémon to battle. When their search, or rather, Simon's search, was unsuccessful he decided to return to their previous battleground. It took about five minutes to find the right spot. Simon was somewhat disappointed when they arrived. The two Caterpie that had been knocked unconscious were nowhere in sight. But in the clearing, perfectly stationary, was a single Pokémon. One that looked familiar. Simon pulled out his Pokédex and aimed it at the green creature. The machine beeped twice then before displaying the appropriate information:

image
011 Metapod
Cocoon Pokémon
image
HT 2' 04"
WT 21.8 lbs.
It prepares for evolution by hardening its shell as much as possible to protect its soft body.

"This should be easy enough. Alright...Shadow, go!" Simon pointed at the Metapod as he gave an his energetic instruction.

In response to his trainer's command Shadow dropped down onto the grass. And then lay down on his side. His muzzle wide opened in a toothy yawn.

"Shadow..." Simon frowned at his Pokémon. "Come on. Let's go?"

""Cheee..." Shadow stuck his tongue out and panted deliberately. Following that move he raised his front paw and swiped it over his muzzle. Crumbs from the sandwich he'd consumed dropped to the grass.

Simon tilted his head slightly in confusion. He settled on an explanation that he could accept. "Okay. You did just eat. So you...you get a break. For now." Simon sighed quietly. This was not going as planned. But that was okay, he had more options. "Pen, let's go!" Simon tossed a Pokéball into the air.

"Pidgeeeya" Pen emerged with an energetic cry. 'Now that's more like it.' Simon thought. He grinned and once again pointed to the Metapod. The green creature was still sitting in the grass filled clearing.

"Pen, tackle it!"

"Pidg!" Pennant flew in a tight circle, then swooped down from the sky. Folding her wings the bird Pokémon became a high-speed missile with one target.

Simon watched the attack with his hands curled into light fists. Pennant hit the Metapod solidly with a loud sound of impact. Dirt and grass, stirred up from the impact, momentarily obscured Simon's view.

"Nice job." he said as he shifted his stance to try and see better. He heard Pen give an answering cry and the sound of wings beating rapidly. The Pidgey rose up into the air. And the Metapod...

"What? Really?" Simon blinked to clear his vision. Perhaps he was seeing things?

"Huh..." Unfortunately, he wasn't. The Metapod appeared unharmed. And it had an odd sheen to its shell. It almost looked like it was polished to a shine.

Simon brought his Pokédex out and re-read the entry.

"It hardens its shell...." he muttered. "That must be it." So it wasn't going to be an easy knockout. "That's okay, we'll try again. Pen, use Tackle!"

Still overhead Pennant circled the Metapod. She hovered for a few seconds and then began to circle again, this time faster. Loose dirt and grass began to rise underneath the Pidgey as she gained speed.

"That's it...." Simon narrowed his eyes and held his arm over his face to protect himself from the stirring debris. The whistling sound of wind increased as the attack continued to build.

"Chee? Cheeee!" From somewhere behind Simon, Shadow yipped. Simon assumed it was a complaint about the debris.

Pen gave a cry and dived towards the Metapod. The green Pokémon raised its head, its body still gleaming brightly.

"Yen!" Shadow's cry interrupted Simon's focus.

"What is it?" He asked, starting to turn around. "I need to focus on- Woah!" Simon lunged sideways as a wall of yellow and black filled his field of vision. He got a fleeting glimpse of red eyes before something sharp tore into his side. Simon gave a startled cry as whatever it was ripped the fabric of his t-shirt with ease. At the end of his lunge Simon hit the ground hard. He rolled twice before coming to a stop. Quickly Simon slid his bag off and scrambled to his feet. He wanted to be unencumbered for...whatever it was. He wasn't a strong fighter but his father had taught him a few of the basics. Simon centered his body, prepared to face...

A bug. A large bug. A Pokémon.

"What in the world?" Simon kept his partial guard up but stared at the Pokémon in confusion. He thought he'd been attacked by a irate human. An irate Pokémon didn't make any sense. The bug buzzed loudly, waving its pointed limbs in the air.

A sharp howl pierced through the sound of the creature's rapid wing beats. Shadow darted to his trainer's side. The Poochyena's fur stood on end, and its teeth were revealed by the low rumbling growl Shadow switched to making.

The yellow and black stripped Pokémon hovered in the air above where Simon had once stood. Its sharp needled appendages were waving rapidly as it made a second series of buzzing sounds. Simon shifted his gaze to where he'd last seen the Metapod. Pen was perched on top of the Pokémon with her wings folded and her head tilted down. She had obviously noticed the bug but hadn't moved yet. 'Stay.' Simon pleaded silently. He didn't know if Pen could take this new contender. He did allow a few seconds of triumph at Pen's victory.

At Simon's feet, Shadow was still growling.

"Shadow..." Simon said slowly, shifting his gaze back to the hovering Pokémon. "Just wait a min-"

But Shadow didn't want to wait. Ceasing its growl the Poochyena launched his small body at the Pokémon who dared attack his trainer. The bug Pokémon chattered rapidly and rose higher into the air. Shadow yipped as his attempt at a tackle fell short. The Poochyena dropped the ground.

"Chee! Chee. Yen!" Shadow cried angrily once its paws were on grass once more.

"Bzz. Bzz Bzzz." The Beedrill's responses were just a terse.

While both Pokémon were occupied, Simon took out Pen's Pokéball and pointed it toward where she was sitting. The beam of red light and subsequent flash caught the Beedrill's attention. It stopped buzzing and turned to investigate.

"Shadow, use Bite." Simon ordered sharply.

The Poochyena yipped and jumped into the air again. There was a brief flash of white teeth followed by a buzz of pain from the Beedrill. Shadow dropped to the ground and gave a satisfied rumble. The bug Pokémon was visibly injured, Simon observed. Its wings twitched and beat in an disjointed rhythm and one of its limbs was tucked in close to its body. The Pokémon began to slowly descend as a result of its damaged wings.

"Shadow, tackle it now." Simon called.

The Poochyena began to run toward the falling Beedrill. He jumped into the air and curled his body into a ball. Simon grinned, confident that the attack would end the fight.

The Beedrill suddenly shifted its body so that its stinger was aimed at the airborne Poochyena.

"No!" Simon gave an alarmed yell.

Twin cries of pain echoed his denial. Shadow, with the Beedrill close behind, fell to the ground. A miniature cloud of dirt and grass sprang up from the impact.

"Shadow!" Simon ran into the battleground. He stumbled and ended up sliding on his knees to get to his Pokémon.

"Cheee...'" Came the weakened but triumphant response. Simon quickly surveyed his Pokémon, looking for damage. And then he found it. A puncture wound on Shadow's back with a viscous purple substance surrounded it. The result of Beedrill's sting.

Simon risked a glance at the Beedrill. It was twitching violently but hadn't found the energy to rise yet. Simon scowled at the Pokémon. The end of its stinger glinted with the same purple substance that covered Shadow's wound.

"Bzzzzz" The large insect gave a final cry and then was silent. Its wings stopped beating and its limbs fell slack.

Simon blinked in surprise. Shadow had won. "Hey, you did it bud." He said gently. He carefully inspected the wound, running his hand over Shadow's fur in an attempt to comfort the Pokémon. 'Poison' He knew, then. Simon quickly glanced around but realized he'd left his pack where he'd been attacked. "I'll be right back." he promised his Pokémon. Shadow whined quietly and closed his eyes. Fighting a wave panic Simon clawed at the grass in his scramble to rise to his feet. He ran toward his pack, yanked it by the strap up from the ground, and fumbled with the drawstring clasp.

"Antidote. Antidote. Antidote." Simon muttered the word like a mantra under his breath. He gave a grunt of frustration as he pushed items aside. Potion. Potion. Another potion. Finally- "Ha!" he found what he was looking for.

Gripping the half-closed pack in one hand and the antidote in the other, Simon rushed back to his Pokémon. He sank to his knees, ignoring the fleeting pain of his knees impacting the dirt. Shadow yipped softly when Simon placed his hand near the wound.

"I'm sorry, I have to- It's okay. Here. It's okay." Simon began to spray the Antidote on Shadow's wound. He held the fur away from the edges of the wound while he worked. Slowly the poisonous residue started to alter. The opaque purple changed to a murky white and then a clear. Then it just...vanished. 'Evaporated?' When the antidote was empty Simon retrieved a potion and emptied half of its contents onto the wound as well. Then he dropped the container onto the ground and sat back. Simon peered anxiously at his Pokémon. Shadow was still breathing, but remained still. 'Come on...come on...work!' Simon leaned forward to brush his hand against Shadow's ear.

"Chee?" Shadow's eyes blinked open. The Poochyena tilted his head upwards, with no sounds of pain, to nudge Simon's hand.

"Heey bud." Simon sighed in relief before smiling wide.

"Yen!" With an abrupt twist of his body Shadow stood up. He shook himself vigorously. Small remnants of the dual sprays flew off onto the nearby grass. When the shaking was finished Shadow rose on his hind legs and placed his front paws on Simon's knee.

"Chee." The Poochyena's tongue lolled out in a canine-grin. Using Simon's knee as a springboard Shadow tackled his trainer.

"Hey!" Simon fell backwards, grunting at the impact. Shadow turned in a circle on his trainer's stomach, then yipped in an excited manner. Simon began to laugh. Shadow was definitely feeling better.

"Alright. You win. Now get off." Playful though he was the Poochyena was heavy. Shadow obediently hopped to the ground. As he stood up Simon brushed grass and dirt from his clothing. It was then that he saw the large tear in the side of his t-shirt.

"Aww." Simon scowled at the damage. He poked his forefinger through the tear then gave a quiet sigh. "I guess I'll have to go shopping again sometime." he noted.

Shadow yipped, catching Simon's attention. He turned to find the Poochyena standing next to the Beedrill with one paw on top of the Beedrill's body. It was very similar to the post Pen had taken over her opponent. 'I wonder where they get that from.' Simon thought. He approached the downed Pokémon cautiously. Shadow backed up to give his trainer room. With his tennis shoe Simon nudged the Beedrill. It didn't react, but it seemed to be still alive. Just...very unconscious.

"Good job, Shadow." Simon said quietly. He withdrew his Pokédex at aimed it at the creature. The machine beeped and then displayed a series of text with an image.

image
015 Beedrill
Poison Bee Pokémon
image image
HT 3' 03"
WT 65.0 lbs.
It can take down any opponent with its powerful poison stingers. It sometimes attacks in swarms.

Shadow used his back legs to scratch a small amount of dirt onto the Beedrill's body. Watching the action caused Simon to laugh again. The trainer gathered up his things, securing his bag and pocketing the emptied Antidote container. He wasn't sure if they could be recycled or not but he thought that he could at least take it to the Mart later to check.

"Alright Shadow let's head back to the PokéCenter." Simon instructed. Though Shadow seemed to be back at 110%, Simon still wanted both of his Pokémon checked out. Just to be sure they were okay. In all the excitement with the Beedrill Simon had been unable to congratulate his Pidgey on her win.

"I'll do that later." Simon promised himself. It was a solid win, it just happened to be interrupted. 'What was that Beedrill's problem anyway?' With a final glance at his attacker Simon began walking toward the PokéCenter. He was down a shirt, his jeans needed washing, and he had to buy another Antidote. But those were tasks for later. For now Simon was content in the knowledge that he and his Pokémon were truly a team. He was proud of both of his...friends.

"You're not ready for this gym yet," Brock tersely told the young girl. "You need to train more. Go out, do that, and come back when you're ready. I'll battle you again, and I'll expect a better fight."

He looked over to the bench of waiting trainers, nothing but guys remained. Dang, oh well. At least I got one number today. That was pretty good. "All right, which one of you is next to take me on? I can keep going all day with this. Now that the ladies are done, there will be no distractions for me."

Fary looked up hearing her name being called. "Will Fary Nitashi please come up and collect her Pokemon. Thank you." the voice of Nurse Joy was cool and cheerful as always. Fary stepped up to the counter and smiled. "I'm Fary Nitashi." she said calmly to the Nurse.

"Oh well here are your Pokemon Fary. Seems your poor Zorua took a bit of a beating. I didn't face Brock did you?" she asked curiously.

"Actually yes I did." Fary said showing Nurse Joy her Boulder Badge. "Oh step closer to the Pokemon League." she said proudly.

Nurse Joy giggled. "I must say I've never seen a Zorua before, you must be from Unova. Why didn't you take part in their league?" she asked.

"I've spent years travailing around Unova, besides I've always wanted to compete in the Indigo League so why not." Fary said taking her Pokeballs.

"Oh, I'll give you an ass-kicking next time." Terinth muttered under her breath, walking away. As she stepped outside, she walked over to the PokeCenter and walked up to the counter, next to Fary.

"Can you heal my pokemon up?" She said to Nurse Joy, then turning to Fary, "So, what does the Boulderbadge look like?"

Fary blinked and pulled out her badge. "Just like this." Fary said stepping aside for Terinth to get to counter.

"How did your battle with Brock go?" Fary asked letting Rogue out and jump around her legs. "Hey Rogue. Seems you're feeling better." Fary looked up at the clock and blinked. "Oh god I need to go back to the gym and watch Jordan battle, if I haven't already." Fary said picking up Zorua and ran back to the Gym.

She sat down next to Jordan. "Hey." she said kissing him softly.

'Never thought I'd be stopping by here multiple times in one day.' Simon remarked silently as he pushed open the door to the PokéCenter. He made his way through the now-familiar lobby and started to approach the desk. Part of the way there he noticed some other trainers already waiting to get their Pokémon healed. Simon's stride faltered to a halt. He hesitated. Should he wait behind them? Perhaps. Maybe it wouldn't take long. Then Simon recalled his previous visit. There was a slim chance that he'd be waiting for a while. The trainer glanced to the side and saw some chairs lined up against the side wall. 'I think I'll wait...over there.' Simon decided. There didn't seem to be a mad rush for Pokémon to be healed. He could keep his 'spot' in line still.

"Come'on, bud" Simon said quietly to his Pokémon. Shadow made a brief sound, a sort of 'indoor' yip. Simon walked to one of the empty chairs and sat down. The cloth and padding covered plastic was not very comfortable, but neither was it unbearable. Shadow didn't follow his trainer, but instead remained where he was for a minute, looking at the trainers with interest. The Poochyena tilted his head. He took a step toward the grouped trainers. As Shadow readied for a second step Simon noticed his Pokémon's curiosity. He gave a low whistle, one that barely rose above the level of a whisper. In response to the sound Shadow's left ear twitched.

"Yen..." Shadow reluctantly turned. He walked to his trainer and curled up on the floor next to Simon's feet.

Jordan was watching as Tyler was getting ready to take to the battlefield against Brock when Fary reappeared. He felt the peck on his cheek but it didn't register nearly as strong in his mind. So she's back. Well that's good I guess. Still dunno the way she was acting before there. Totally playing the field.

He pulled back. "Hey," he replied. "So...how was it then, is this guy, like, easy to beat? Cause like, if you know any weak spots, or ways I could win, I could totally use them."

Rochelle hummed happily to herself as she finished dealing with her sand-ridden clothing. Having dressed in a new outfit, she stuffed the old one in the plastic bag she kept on hand for used clothes. Hopefully Pokémon Centers had at least one washing machine somewhere with which she could clean them... Dismissing the thought, Rochelle stuffed the bag into her backpack and pulled out her most recent acquisition: the Boulder Badge from Brock. She was still proud of her team for accomplishing this victory for her, and felt that they deserved some kind of recognition for it.

On a slightly more aesthetic note, she tried thinking of somewhere to display the Badge she had won, and all the others she would obtain in the future. The octagonal, stone-coloured Badge had a pin and clasp on the back of it to allow her to attach it to an article of clothing, although Rochelle didn't really want to put a hole in one of her shirts. The inside of a jacket could work, although she only had one that gave her easy access to the inside of it.

Thinking over ideas as to where she could show off her Badge - it was now in the pocket of her three-quarter-length pants - Rochelle made to retie her bandanna over her hair, only to remember that it needed to be cleaned before she could wear it again. It was a habitual thing, and she was used to having the bandanna to keep her hair restrained. With that, she pulled on her backpack and returned to the main hall of the Pokémon Center. There were a couple of people in line to get their Pokémon healed, but the nurse spotted her and waved her over. "Rochelle Sanders?"

"Yes, that's me," Rochelle answered, jumping the queue to collect her Pokémon. Nurse Joy held up a metal tray on which her three Poké Balls rested; Rochelle recognised Kirsten's immediately due to its slightly scuffed exterior, but couldn't tell the difference between the other two. Resolving to buy a few labels from the Poké Mart as Tyler had mentioned, she took the three capsules and attached them to her belt. "Thank you very much," she said, maintaining her sense of politeness and giving the nurse a smile.

"And thank you. Come back again any time," Joy answered with an identical smile before turning to the Trainers in line. Rochelle wandered away from the counter, noting that Fary had left; perhaps she had headed back to the Gym to watch the rest of the group battle Brock. Although... she had passed Terinth in the line of Trainers. Maybe she had beaten the Leader as well. Then Rochelle spotted another familiar face. Specifically, that of Simon and his Poochyena curled up on the floor. "Hey, how's it going?" Rochelle asked jovially as she took a seat near Simon; she left one seat between the two of them so as not to be too close for comfort.

"Well having a water, grass, fighting, ground or steel type Pokemon helps because Brock is a rock based trainer, rock is weak to all of those types. Also another move that would help is low kick or double kick, like what I used with Horny, both are fighting moves so that helps. Shouldn't be too hard as long as you avoid fire, ice, bug and flying types, rock is super effective to all of those types." Fary said cuddling to Jordan.

As Terinth collected her defeated Pokemon, Tyler stepped forward. Before he spoke, he gave Terinth a sympathetic nod as she left. He wasn't sure if she would appreciate the consideration or not, but he felt it was polite. He cleared his throat. "Okay Brock," Tyler said. "Now it's my turn. I want one Pokemon at a time, if that's okay by you".

"Very well," Brock replied, producing yet another Pokeball from the nearby rack. "I won't be giving up another Boulder Badge that easily. I think my losing streak is just about to turn around!" The Gym Leader enlarged the Pokeball in his hand and readied his throwing arm. "My first Pokemon will be...Geodude!" he called out before tossing it.

The Pokeball sailed through the air and released the Pokemon inside. Brock's Geodude materialized with its arms crossed. The creature that resembled a floating sentient boulder uncrossed its arms and flexed its "muscles".

"Geodude!" it cried.

"Your move," Brock announced with a grin, his posture a confident one.

Tyler nodded and knelt down next to Tank. "You're up, okay buddy?" he asked his Nidoran.

Tank nodded. "Ran ran," he replied.

"Alright then. Go out there and Double Kick that Geodude!" Tyler commanded.

The Nidoran replied with a curt grunt took off at full speed, making a beeline for Geodude. Tank jumped into the air and maneuvered itself mid flight so its feet would impact the Rock Pokemon. Geodude at the last second moved out of the way, causing Tank to strike air and land off-balance on the arena floor.

"Good! Now use Rock Throw!" Brock shouted.

Geodude tore a chunk of rock from the ground and hurled it at Tank. The Nidoran jumped out of the way of the projectile, which crashed into the spot he once stood and sent bits of shattered stone flying in all directions.

Tyler flinched somewhat. That was close. "Tank, Double Kick again!"

Tank regained his footing and charged at Geodude again, jumping into the air with impressive speed. His two hind feet slammed into his opponent with a force that betrayed his diminutive nature. Brock's Geodude cried out in equal parts surprise and pain as it was sent recoiling backwards a significant distance.

"The little thing sure packs a punch," Brock quipped. "But he won't beat my Geodude! Rock Throw again!"

Repeating its previous attack, Geodude tore another chunk of rock from the ground and hurled it at Tank. This time, however, Tank was unable to dodge the projectile and was sent flying backwards from the impact. He landed hard on the ground and skid a bit before coming to a stop against a boulder.

Uh oh. "Shake it off, Tank! Do another Double Kick!"

Tank regained his footing and took off for Geodude, dodging more rocks as they were thrown at him. Although possessing more raw strength than him, Tank still had the edge over Geodude when it came to speed, something the Nidoran was making full advantage of. Once within range, Tank sprung up and gave Geodude another full-force Double Kick. The force and direction of the impact caused the floating Rock Pokemon to spin around a few times before it finally stopped. Dazed from both the attack and the subsequent spinning, Geodude was unable to grab more rocks to throw, creating an opening.

Excitement coursed through Tyler. We're doing it! We're actually doing it! "Finish him off! Double Kick!"

Tank replied to Tyler's command with a final Double Kick to the dazed Geodude's underside. The angle of the attack sent the Pokemon skyward in a parabolic trajectory, crashing to the arena floor with a loud smash. Geodude lay on its back, unconscious.

Brock grit his teeth momentarily. "Geodude, return!" he shouted as he recalled his defeated Pokemon. Geodude was sucked back into its Pokeball in a stream of red energy. "Lucky break, but this ends here! I choose you, Onix!" Brock tossed another Pokeball, which released a gigantic stone serpent into the arena. Staring down at Tank and his Trainer, Onix opened its stone maw and unleashed a powerful roar. The intense cacophony of sound reverberated in Tyler's chest like a ringing bell.

Oh crap, oh crap, oh crap, oh crap. The young Trainer recoiled and took a step backwards. That thing has to be at least thirty feet tall! How is Tank...

On the thought of his Nidoran, Tyler ripped his gaze from Onix to see how he was doing. Against all logic, Tank held his ground, defiantly staring down the behemoth that was easily fifteen times his size. He didn't look intimidated in the slightest. In fact, Tank looked...excited.

Encouraged by his Pokemon's confidence, Tyler retook a step forward and regained his composure. "Tank..." his voice cracked slightly from his anxiety. "...go out there use Double Kick!"

"Ran!" Tank replied affirmatively and charged at Onix.

"Your Nidoran's got a lot of spunk. Too bad that won't help him. Onix, Rock Throw, now!"

As it was unable to pick up anything, Onix performed its Rock Throw attack by using its tail as a gargantuan whip, slamming into the ground with terrifying force. Due to his superior agility, Tank was able to deftly dodge Onix's attacks as he continued his headlong charge. Dust and chunks of shattered rock kicked up into the air each time the titanic stone serpent's tail slammed the ground.

As the tail smashed the arena floor again, Tank saw an opening. The Nidoran jumped onto the much larger Pokemon's tail with considerable timing and began to quickly scale up its body, using the grooves in the stone to get a foothold. With a few segments left to cross, Tank flung himself into the air and slammed his hind feet into the side of Onix's head. The stone beast recoiled and roared loudly as Tank bounced off its head and began to plummet to the ground.

"Rock Throw again, Onix!" Brock commanded.

Onix roared again and swung its tail in a trajectory that intercepted Tank as he fell. The Nidoran yelped loudly and was sent hurtling away at a startling velocity.

"Tank!" Tyler shouted.

Tank slammed hard onto the arena floor and bounced like a skipping stone. He impacted the ground again rolled for a considerable distance before coming to a stop just at Tyler's feet. The Nidoran was still breathing, but was clearly unconscious.

Blitz seemed to flinch. "Pika pika..." he said under his breath.

"Your Nidoran is unable to battle," Brock announced. "Choose your next Pokemon".

Oh man, he looks bad... Tyler thought as he pulled out Tank's Pokeball. "Tank! Return!" After his Nidoran was returned to his ball, the Trainer frowned. Tank would have to have a long stay at the Pokemon Center after this was through. But right now, he had more pressing issues to worry about. Namely, what his next Pokemon would be. Blitz would do no good against Onix. Pokemon like that were nearly resistant to electricity, so the only thing sending out his Pikachu would do was give him another trip to the Pokemon Center. Which left one other Pokemon.

Geist. Tyler wasn't sure how the Abra would do against a Pokemon like Onix, but it was his only chance. Producing Geist's Pokeball, he reached back and tossed it out with all his might. "Geist, I'm counting on you! Go!" The Pokeball opened, and Geist materialized sitting cross-legged on the floor.

Brock seemed amused. "What, are you going to teleport yourself out of here? Your Abra is no match for my Onix," he boasted. "I think you should spare your Pokemon the pain of defeat and just forfeit now".

Tyler clenched his fists. Brock mocking his Pokemon and their ability was getting very old, very fast. "Just you wait, Brock!" he replied indignantly, his growing frustration and irritation on full display. "I'll show you what Geist can really do. You'll eat your words, I promise!"

Brock grinned. "If you insist," he retorted smugly. "This'll be short. Onix! Rock Throw!"

Onix complied with another roar and swung its tail at the stationary Geist.

"Teleport!" Tyler cried.

"Ah..." Woosh. Onix's tail swiped empty air and scraped against the floor.

Woosh. "Bra!" Geist reappeared a short distance away, still sitting cross-legged.

"Rock Throw again!"

Once more, Geist vanished as Onix's gigantic tail came sailing his way, only to reappear behind the rock serpent.

Brock's confident grin began to melt away. He seemed to be somewhat annoyed. "Onix, Sand Attack!" the Gym Leader barked.

The Rock Pokemon complied, and slammed its tail onto the ground. Instead of aiming at Geist, however, it was aiming to kick up a large cloud of sand around it in an attempt to hamper the Abra's vision. Onix followed it up by slamming its tail down where it last saw Geist in an attempt to make it teleport.

As expected, Geist teleported away. However, the disturbance in the air caused by its teleportation created a very noticeable gap in the floating sand. This time, Onix knew exactly where Geist was and therefore had the advantage.

"Tackle, now!" Brock commanded.

Onix dove directly at Geist, its head slamming into the ground next to the Abra. Although imprecise, the attack created enough force to catapult Geist into the air. He flew up and over Onix's body before landing on the other side of the massive Rock Pokemon.

Sensing victory, Brock regained his confident grin. "Finish this once and for all, Onix! Use Bind, now!"

The long and massive stone body of Onix began to wrap itself around Geist's comparatively tiny frame, lifting him up off the ground and trapping him. Geist let out a choked cry as Onix began to tightly squeeze him, making breathing painful and difficult.

Tyler's fists clenched tighter. Geist was in a very bad situation. There was only one way out of it, but did his best friend have any strength left to do it? The outcome of this battle hinged on that fact.

"So, do you give up yet?" Brock asked. "I don't think your Abra can handle much more".

"It's not over yet!" Tyler retorted. "Geist! Show Onix your Hidden Power!" Come on...

A purple aura began to appear around Geist, casting a faint light of the same color on Onix's gray body. The aura quickly grew in intensity, the light becoming brighter and brighter. A faint humming sound became audible, becoming louder and louder at the same rate the aura was brightening. Onix's body began to tremble with the effort it took to keep its body binded around his form. The stone serpent was fighting a battle it was very quickly losing.

Come on...

The humming suddenly stopped. A powerful, sustained blast of purple energy erupted from around Geist. Onix bellowed in agony as the energy ravaged its body, traveling in purple arcs up and down the many stone segments that constituted its form. The stone colossus's grip on Geist slacked, and the Abra managed to slip out of its grasp. Onix, on the other hand, let out a final groan before falling over and smashing into the ground, purple sparks of energy still jumping from its body. It did not move again.

Brock seemed to be at least somewhat impressed. "Onix, return". The Gym Leader recalled his defeated Pokemon back to its Pokeball and placed it on a separate rack. Tyler, on the other hand, rushed onto the arena to be with Geist, who was standing, but barely. He dropped to one knee so he was at eye level with his friend.

"Geist...are you okay?"

"Aaabraaa..." Geist replied weakly with a nod.

Tyler grinned. "We did it, Geist. We won our first Gym battle," he told Geist. He gave his wounded Pokemon a light hug. "Just like we said we would some day".

"Abra...", replied Geist. He couldn't return the hug, and instead nuzzled his Trainer's neck as a gesture of affection.

"You need some rest. We'll visit the Pokemon Center as soon as we can, okay? For now, return". Tyler waited for Geist to acknowledge what he said before returning him to his specially labeled Pokeball. As he stood back up, it was then that he was aware of Brock standing right in front of him, holding a few items in his hand.

Shadow raised his head to peer up at Rochelle when she spoke. Simon, not expecting anyone to approach him, looked bewildered for a split second. Then recognition kicked in so he cleared his throat quietly.

"Hello." he replied to the other trainer. "It's going well." Simon glanced at the line of trainers. It hadn't moved yet. Shadow took advantage of his trainer's momentary distraction and stood up. He didn't step away from the chair. The Poochyena simply stretched in an exaggerated manner. The front of his body lowered and his tail rose. He flashed small but sharp teeth in a needless yawn.

Simon returned his gaze to Rochelle. "...How are you?" he asked after a second of silence. Simon distantly noted that Shadow was moving but also that he wasn't causing trouble right now. The trainer moved his arm slightly in an casual motion designed to hide the tear in his shirt. 'I should have picked the other side of the wall.' Simon noted belatedly.

"My team and I are doing pretty good," Rochelle answered, her expression turning into a confident smile. "We beat Brock about half an hour ago, thanks to Kirsten and Natalya. Um... in case you're unfamiliar with my team, they're my Horsea and Murkrow respectively," she added to make sure Simon knew who she was talking about. She hadn't talked to him much, but she knew who he was and knew that he was part of their little group of adventurers.

"Brock can be a clever opponent; he created a sandstorm to give his Pokémon the advantage. Since neither of mine were Rock-types, they were definitely on the back foot, but we pulled through," she continued, pride creeping into her voice as she fished the Boulder Badge out of her pocket and showed it to Simon. "But I really shouldn't rub it in that we beat Brock. It took effort from all of us. Um... are you planning to challenge him sometime?"

"OK, um, I'll try to remember that I guess," Jordan replied as Tyler's battle came to an end. "So, yeah, looks like I'm up." He got up from his seat on the bench and headed over to where Tyler was."


Brock walked over to his latest opponent, to present Tyler with his winnings. "I wasn't expecting that out of an Abra. Well done. Here you go, take your prize." As he handed Tyler his badge TM and cash, he noticed the surfer coming up beside him. "They just keep coming. At least this guy looks like an airhead," he noted quietly to himself.

Simon leaned forward to get a better look at the Boulder badge. He'd never seen the Kanto region badges in person before. The badge Rochelle held out was smaller than he thought it would be. A grey octagon cut and colored to resemble a rock of some type. The badge was aptly named.

"Congratulations." he offered with a brief smile. Winning a gym badge was definitely an accomplishment of note. Sandstorm, huh, I'll have to watch out for that. Simon wondered how many group members had also managed to win their fights to obtain the gym badge. "And yes, I was planning to challenge Brock." he confirmed. Simon leaned back in his chair. As soon as his Pokémon were healed the gym could be his next stop. Though it was getting kind of late. Plus he needed to either buy another shirt or changes shirts. Again. "Maybe tomorrow." Simon amended as an afterthought. "Shadow should be ready then." And we will all do better if we are rested.

The curious Poochyena turned to look at Simon when his name was mentioned. "Chee?" Shadow questioned. He'd heard his name but no other important key words. Like 'food' or 'fight'. Simon grinned at his Pokemon, the expression mixing genuine affection with amusement. One of Shadow's ears was flopped down and the other was raised.

Aeris watched as the battles continued after she had fought Brock. She had taken the Boulderbadge and pinned it neatly on her t-shirt on the left side of her chest. She counted the money she had now on her. After putting it all in her bag's secret pocket, she continued watching the battles. She needed to get Blaze and Tristan healed up, so she stood up and walked over to Mika. "Sweetie, I need to go to the Pokecenter with Blaze and Tristan. I'll be back once I do that, hopefully in time to see you battle." She kissed his cheek, then headed outside and to the Pokecenter.

Mika followed after Aeris, smiling as they walked and holding her hand. His Pokemon followed after him, and he escorted her to the Pokemon Center.

"Actually, I think I'll hold off on battling him for now. I'm not ready to battle him yet, even though I could probably beat with Toxina, he could get a lucky shot and knock her out, leaving me with a major weakness." He explained to his girlfriend. "I'm gonna look around, see if there's any Pokemon that I can catch, or maybe if anyone wants to trade something in the Pokemon Center."

Trade? You would trade one of us away? Bones asked with a slight whimper in his voice.

"Not you, Bones... and I wouldn't trade Toxina or Artemis away unless I knew that it would be a good Trainer they'd be going to." He said to his Pokemon, reassuring the Dark-Type. "It'd be good if we could get a Water, Ice, or Grass Type to help cover more of our weaknesses."

You have a point, I suppose. But I don't like the idea of you just tossing us off for someone stronger just because it strikes your fancy.

"You know I'm not like that..." He said, rubbing his Pokemon's cheek affectionately. "You did really well, hun... Congrats on the badge, Aeris."

Rochelle looked down at the sound of Simon's Pokémon making its presence known, and giggled a little at its facial expression. "Hey there," she said to the Poochyena quietly as she extended a hand towards it. Shadow poked her fingers with his nose and sniffed at them, but didn't act aggressively, so Rochelle took that as a good sign. She reached around and scratched him behind one ear, as she would do for a dog. Surprisingly, Shadow leaned into it, inviting her to keep scratching.

"Hmm. Seems your Pokémon - Shadow, was it? - likes me a little. Or, at least, the scratching," Rochelle commented, a little amused by the Poochyena's reaction.

Tyler grinned slightly. "Thank you Brock," he said as he placed his newly obtained badge and money in his pocket and the TM into his backpack. Passing Jordan, he nodded in acknowledgement. "I'd stay to watch your battle, Jordan, but I have to get to the Pokemon Center and fast," he told him quickly. "Hope you understand. Come on, Blitz".

"Pikachu," Blitz replied, following his Trainer out of the Gym.

Reveling in victory over Brock would have to come later, when Tyler was sure that his injured Pokemon were okay. With all due haste, he made a run for the Pokemon Center and made his way through the building's doors. In the corner of his eye, he saw Simon and Rochelle talking, but he went straight up to the counter and removed Geist and Tank's Pokeballs from their holsters.

"Please Nurse, I need these Pokemon healed as soon as possible," he said urgently.

The Nurse Joy at the counter simply smiled and took the Pokeballs from his hands. "Don't worry, sir," she told Tyler calmly. "We'll have your Pokemon healed in no time. Please have a seat, and they'll be ready soon". With that, she turned around and headed down the hallway behind her.

Right. Have a seat. Tyler decided to take a seat near Simon and Rochelle, offering a wave to the two Trainers. Some company was better than none, and he needed something to cool off his nerves. "Uh...hey, guys".

Simon nodded at Rochelle, shooting his Pokémon a peculiar look. "He likes people." the trainer remarked. "Especially if they give him attention." Simon fell silent to glance at the counter. No line movement could be determined. The trainer looked back at Shadow and had to grin. The Poochyena had given up all pretense of caution and was leaning into Rochelle's hand so much Simon was surprised he didn't fall over. Seeing his Pokémon relaxed and happy, Simon found himself relaxing a bit as well. Enough to share a bit more.

"Yes, he's Shadow." he said pointing to the Poochyena. "I also have Pennant, my Pidgey, who is currently resting from a battle." Simon reached into his pocket and pulled out a minimized Pokéball. He lifted the red-and-white item into view then returned it to his pocket. There was a brief lull in the conversation. Simon wasn't sure what to say next. I could ask about the battle. Yes, that could work. Simon sat up straight in his chair in preparation for his question. In a semi-conscious gesture he brought his hand up to his face, touching his forefinger to the bridge of his nose. Realization hit him the instant his finger touched skin instead of metal. He had no glasses on to adjust. Simon's good mood dimmed a bit at his slip-up.

Just then he heard a familiar voice call out a greeting. Simon turned to see Tyler wave. Apparently his battle, if he'd had one, was over. Simon gave a short wave back but didn't verbalize a greeting.

"Oh, okay. It wouldn't hurt to train them a bit more. And maybe you could catch a Caterpie and train it until it eventually evolves into a Butterfree, just like my Tristan." She giggled a little and smiled to Mika. "And thank you. I guess I was lucky that Blaze learned Metal Claw. It turned out to be quite helpful, plus she evolved now after the fight. What better way to evolve than to defeat a Gym Leader, eh?" She was feeling mighty confident now that she'd beaten Brock and both her Pokemon had evolved, Tristan in the forest and Blaze after beating the Geodude and Onix. She knew Blaze had one other evolution to go before being fully evolved. She'd always wanted a Charizard and at this rate, Blaze might evolve into one before they'd get to the third Gym leader or after beating him.

They entered the Pokecenter and walked up to the counter. Aeris handed Blaze's and Tristan's Pokeballs with them inside them to the nurse and after looking over the seats inside for a little while, she noticed Rochelle and Simon from the group. "If you want to go now and train, I'll either be here, in the Pokemart, the museum or Brock's Gym." she said to Mika, kissed him on the cheek and walked over to Rochelle and Simon. "Hi there, you two. Just getting my Pokemon healed up after the battle. I imagine you're doing the same, Rochelle, after your fight with Brock. And what about you?" she asked Simon after turning to him.

"Hey, Tyler," Rochelle answered, still scratching Shadow behind the ear absent-mindedly. He looked like he was over-balancing a little, trusting her to keep him upright and scratch at the same time. Amused by this, Rochelle was a little worried about taking her hand back, lest the Pokémon fall over. Instead she turned slightly to look at Tyler, and Blitz who was following him.

"So, did you battle Brock after I left?" she asked him. "How'd it go?" She was asking both out of her own curiosity and to fill the silence: Simon didn't seem like much of a conversationalist. Hopefully Tyler could fill the void.

At that point Aeris joined the slowly-expanding group. Rochelle didn't respond to her, however, as she was waiting on Tyler's response.

As Tyler departed, Brock's attention shifted to his new challenger. "You look like you're a long way from home there, man." He started walking back towards the other side of the gym. "Not only that, I saw you putting the moves on my date over there. Not a smart move. You sure you're up for this?"

Jordan stood in place watching Brock walk away. "Oh yeah, totally bro, you know, yeah I'm ready to, um, rock this place! Yeah!"

"I see what you did there, but I'm the only one allowed to make the rock-related puns in this gym. You've got to have some massive stones to try and pull that in here." Brock reached the pedestal that held the Pokeballs he would use. He grabbed two and the pedestal retreated into the floor. "I'm going to crush you."

"Uh, I dunno bro, cause, I'm like, totally good, you know?" Jordan reached into his pocket and pulled out one of his Pokeballs.

"Well, let's see it then. Go Geodude!" Brock released yet another of his small Rock Pokemon, the tiny boulder with arms floating in the air. "Geodude!" it proclaimed as the light around it faded.

"OK, doesn't seem hard. Yeah, go!" Jordan threw his own Pokeball, and the larger flash of white indicated that his opener would indeed be his starting Pokemon, Vince. "Scyther!" Aww yeah!

Brock just started laughing. "Hahaha, oh wow. I'm sorry, I knew you looked the part, but if this is what you're going to face me with, then this is going to be over quicker than I thought!"

"What? Says you, bro. Vince bro can take down whatever! Go Vince, show him what you can do!" Vince did what it's trainer asked and started charging at Geodude.

"Do you even know an attack? Geodude, use Defense Curl!" The Rock Pokemon brought it's arms in front of itself bracing for the hit. Vince struck, but pretty much bounced off the curled up Pokemon.

"Ummmmm, OK, uh," Jordan stammered. What the hell does he mean by attacks? Vince took matters into his own hands and launched another attack at Brock's Pokemon, but it was to little effect.

"Geodude, Tackle it now!" The Pokemon did as it was commanded and struck Vince, sending the Bug type flying backwards.

"Man, what can I have Vince bro do? His attacks aren't working like they did before..." Jordan said quietly to himself. "Maybe I should check that Pokedex thing." He pulled out his lint covered Pokedex from his pocket and checked Vince.

Scyther, the Mantis Pokemon. Types: Bug/Flying

Jordan thought back to what Fary said, "Shouldn't be too hard as long as you avoid fire, ice, bug and flying types, rock is super effective to all of those types." "Oh....harsh." He kept checking, seeing if any of these attacks Brock mentioned were in there. Scyther's attacks: Quick Attack, False Swipe, Leer, Pursuit Well if that's Quick Attack that he's been doing, it sure isn't working...um... "Vince bro! Try...um...Pursuit? I guess?"

Vince looked a little surprised that Jordan had given him an actual command, but he did his best, a slightly dark aura seen rising off his body as he struck the Geodude. This did a little more damage and the floating bolder was sent backwards, but it still held it's ground.

"OK, that's enough of this," Brock commented. "Geodude, use Rock Throw and finish this round!" The Geodude picked up a chunk of rock out of the battlefield, and hoisted it above it's head. "Geo...dude!" With a cry, it hurled the rock towards Vince, connecting directly with the young Pokemon. With a X4 weakness to the attack, Vince crumpled in a heap on the gym floor, knocked out of the match.

"Dude! Ah man, shoot sorry Vince bro! I'll make that up to you buddy. Get back in here!" He reproduced the Pokeball and returned Vince inside.

"Scy......" Owwwwwww..... Vince groaned as the red light enveloped him.

"Haha, this is going to be over pretty quickly I suppose," Brock theorized. "That means I can start getting ready for my date ahead of schedule. Excellent."

"Hey bro, I still got one more!" Jordan reminded him. He brought out the other Pokeball in his pocket. "Go, Spike bro!"

The thrown ball rotated once in the air before unleashing the more manic of Jordan's two Pokemon. Spike looked around the arena before turning to his opponent. "Man.....Mankey! Mankey!" Wha....Hey! You! What are you! What are you doing?

"Hmmm, wasn't expecting a Mankey, but I guess it is possible that you lucked into one. This should be more of a challenge anyway. Geodude, Tackle!" Brock ordered as the Rock Pokemon flew at Spike, landing a blow. It was relatively weak but it sent Spike skidding back a bit.

"Shoot, I better find out what Spike bro can actually do," Jordan brought out the Pokedex for a second time to figure out what moves his Mankey actually had, but Spike was already sure of what it wanted to do. It wanted some revenge for that blow. "Mankey.....MANKEY!" What the fuck....FUCK YOU MAN! It leaped at Geodude, and delivered a crushing strike, it's foot planted squarely in Geodude's face. The rock bounced off the floor before fainting in front of the Gym Leader.

"Whoa..." Jordan said as the Pokedex rang off the attacks in Spike's arsenal. Mankey's attacks: Scratch, Leer, Low Kick, Fury Swipes "That must have been a Low Kick then....wait that's Fighting. Fary said that would work. Excellent!"

Brock recalled Geodude back to it's ball. "You fought well," he told the fallen combatant. He looked back up at Jordan, and his now irate Mankey, the smoke almost seen coming out of it's nose. "Quite a competitor you got there, but it's a shame for you I've run out of Onix to fight with, so looks you'll have to take on...Rhyhorn!" Brock's other Pokeball unleashed a monster of a Pokemon, it looked like a rhino, covered in spikes, the same color as the battler that proceeded it. It let out a roar upon it's entry into the battlefield.

"Um.....shoot," Jordan said. His father had told them about the couple of times he had to calm down raging stampedes of these beasts in the Safari Zone, he thought he was over exaggerating, but the thing in front of Spike right now, looked like it was a living wrecking ball. "OK, well let's do it then. Spike!" He looked down at the Pokedex. "Use..uh..Leer!"

"MAN......" Spike's eyes went pure white as it stared down the Spikes Pokemon, it shivered, a sign that it's defenses were lowered.

"Horn Attack, Rhyhorn!" The Pokemon charged forward as Spike's eyes returned to normal, just in time to get hit with the full force of Rhyhorn's horn. Spike was knocked for a loop and was a little slow to get up, but was still willing to fight, just as mad as ever.

"All right Spike, go for a Low Kick!" Spike charged ahead, eager to show Rhyhorn exactly what had happened to it's rock brethren before it, but on the way, it hit a loose pebble on the floor, and fell down, short of it's intended goal.

"Unlucky there," Brock noted. "Rhyhorn, finish it with a Stomp attack!" Rhyhorn trotted over to the fallen Mankey and raised it's front leg, poised to deliver the final blow to Jordan's chances of winning.

"Spike bro! Come on man! Get out of there!" Jordan urged his last battler to get out of the way, and it looked Spike would not be able to do so. But that didn't mean it would be done in this fight.

"Man....KEY!" Fuck......YOU! It swept it's leg with good strength into Rhyhorn's supporting leg, throwing it off balance. Rhyhorn fell forward with a thud, trying to regain it's footing.

"Now Spike, uh.....get on it's back!" Jordan said, remembering how the rare fights on the beach were usually ended. Once one guy or girl got on top of the other, it was usually a done deal. Spike obeyed scurrying on top of the fallen opponent before it got up from the ground.

"What the...." Brock was a bit baffled by this move, it wasn't a winning move, although it did prevent most of the young Rhyhorn's attacks from possibly connecting. "Rhyhorn, shake that Mankey off!"

The Rhyhorn bucked and kicked like a Tauros, but Spike was holding on to the large spike on it's back. Rhyhorn charged around the area, desperate to remove this unwelcome addition to it's backside. It smashed into a couple of the larger rocks in the arena, but Spike's grip towards it's namesake feature kept hold. On hitting it's third giant rock, the Rhyhorn stopped, clearly out of steam.

"OK Spike bro, kick it one more time!" Spike let go of of the spiked and jumped into the air, nowhere near the height it had obtained before, but it was enough to get some momentum behind one final Low Kick. "KEY!" It connected square in the back of Rhyhorn, sending it slumping to the ground. Spike landed behind it, out of breath, puffing and scraped from it's wild ride, but still standing, waiting for it's opponent to get back up, but it would not be coming. It's earlier Leer, despite Jordan not knowing what it did specifically, insured that the kicks would hit hard enough to knock it out.

"What? You've got to be kidding me," Brock commented, a bit miffed that he allowed someone who didn't even know what an attack was to defeat him. He returned Rhyhorn to its ball as Jordan came out to congratulate his victorious battler.

"You did it bro! You won! Way to go, Spike!" Jordan praised.

From the combination of the euphoria of victory and the sheer exhaustion of the battle, Spike was a lot calmer now. Still huffing, he almost collapsed in Jordan's arms. "Man...man man...key!" I...so tired...need food!

"Dude, you did awesome, I'll get you back to like, the Center there." Jordan returned Spike to his ball and went to confront the now vanquished Gym Leader. "All right bro, I won. Hand over some cash there."

"All right fine, here you go, you lucky bugger," Brock said, disdain in his voice as he coughed up the badge, TM and prize money. "But I think I'll be winning the war tonight when I score with that lovely lady back there." He pointed at Fary. "Chew on that..."bro". Now I'm going to go get ready for my date. No more challenges today!" With that, Brock vacated the arena, heading for home to prepare.

Jordan walked back over to where Fary was watching, she was the only person of the group who remained to see his first big victory. "Uh, so yeah, I should probably, like, get to the Center now, to heal my bros."

'Where did all these people come from?' Simon wondered. Perhaps there was an invisible cue he had missed? Had the gym closed for dinner?

Rochelle seemed to be talking to Tyler now, which left Simon with Aeris. However he'd noticed that both trainers had given up their Pokemon already. Something he had yet to do. Simon stood up, answering Aeris' question in the process. "I'm here to get my Pokemon healed as well. Excuse me." Simon began to walk toward the counter. Shadow, relucant to leave the group of new and therefore exciting people, did not follow. However the Poochyena did choose to regain his balance. He settled himself on all fours. Shadow's gaze briefly followed his trainer's shoes to make sure Simon wasn't leaving the building.

Bypassing the main line Simon found a nurse patiently waiting. She seemed a bit bored. Or at least Simon assumed so as she was currently inspecting lint on the collar of her uniform. Simon walked over and set Pen's Pokeball on the counter. "Could I get my Pokemon healed?" he asked.

"Certainly!" The suddenly perky nurse replied. She quickly took his name and the Pokeball. "Will this be all?" the nurse asked. She pulled a fresh tray from behind the counter and set the single Pokeball on it. She proceeded to pick up the metal tray then paused to wait for Simon's response.

Simon turned to glance back at Shadow. It took a few seconds to locate the proper section as he had to wait for people to move out of his field of vision. Finally a small grey furred Pokemon was visible. Shadow still seemed relaxed. His head turned, the Pokemon's gaze catching Simon's. 'Alright then.' Simon decided.

"Yes that's-" To the trainer's surprise Shadow abruptly shook himself and began to walk away from the group. Simon quickly amended his statement. "Oh, hold on. I'm sorry there's one more."

The nurse set the tray back down with a smile. Pen's Pokeball wobbled dangerously on the flat surface. Trainer and attendant waited until Shadow reached the counter. The Poochyena stopped next to Simon's shoe. "Chee." Shadow announced.

Simon knelt to one knee and took Shadow's Pokeball out of his pocket. "Thanks, bud." he said. Shadow gave a canine grin just before disappearing. "This is the last one." Simon told the nurse. He placed Shadow's Pokeball on the tray himself.

"Alright, sir. Please take a seat and we'll call your name when these are ready." The nurse picked up the tray and turned away from the counter.

"Thanks." Simon replied. He watched the nurse leave. When he could no longer distinguish her nurse from the rest of the working nurses Simon slowly turned around. He looked at the grouped chairs. And their occupants. "...I'll do that." he finished quietly.

"You did it Jordan." Fary said hugging him tightly. "See I knew you could do it bro." she giggled not mocking Jordan but more doing it as a complement. "Yes we better head to the center. Poor Vince and Spike took a beating but I'm still happy for you." Fary said taking Jordan's hand.

"Zor zorrrr ua." Me too. Zorua licked Jordan's cheek and hopped on his shoulder.

"Thanks," Jordan replied as Rogue started licking his face. Huh, well she's going right back to it anyway, but why was she going all gaga over Rock Guy before then. And why is she still going out on that date with him? I dunno, this is confusing. I wish it was just back on the beach, then I would know if she was interested in me by how far below my waist she was willing to go. I can't tell what Fary thinks of me. Man...

Holding Fary's hand the two walked over to the Pokemon Center, the sun starting to dip below the mountains that framed Pewter City. Once inside, Jordan spotted pretty much the whole group at the counter. Jordan made his way to the nurse to the side and handed over his two Pokeballs. "Yeah, uh, can you like heal my bros please?"

"Of course. We'll be back with them as soon as possible." With that, the nurse went into the back.

Jordan went over to the main group. "Uh, hey guys. Sup. Should have seen my match, was pretty good."

Fary walked with Jordan the whole way in the Pokemon Center. "Yea you missed it. He took out Brock with Spike. It was fun to watch." Fary said hugging Jordan. She was happy to be with him, she started to like it more and more. Zorua yipped and in response to Fary and Jordan.

"Oh I have to go and clean up." Fary said as Zorua jumped back onto Fary's shoulder. "I need to shower and get dressed." Fary said darting off to the showers. She quickly cleaned her self off and put her things in a locked knowing her bike would be safe changed up where it was. Before putting her bag away she pulled out a clean pair of pants and a nice shirt opting to only keep her shoes and belt on.

While drying her hair she thought out loud. "Hmmm what were you thinking Fary flirting with Brock? You're with Jordan and you like being with Jordan so why Brock? Well, you're not together together, it's just a hook up but hell I'll end up picking Jordan in the end." Fary said putting her hair up in a nicer way and walked out of the showers.

She decided to head out the back door and to the gym calling Brock. "Come on pick up." Fary said.

Jordan remained at the counter, waiting for the nurse to return. Fary went off to the shower to get ready for her date, Jordan still wondering why, if she was so in to him, would she even bother with that jerk from the gym. He went back to focusing on the group conversation.


Brock was busy getting the spikes in his hair set just right. He had to have emptied an entire Jersey Shore's cast worth of gel into his do. He had his outfit ready, a simple collared shirt and vest, with his cargo pants. The finishing touches were applied just as his phone started ringing. He recognized the number on the phone as the one he just entered today.

He fished the phone out of his pocket and answered. "Hey beautiful," he remarked. "I was just getting ready to head over and get you. Where are you at right now?"

"Oh just in front of your gym waiting for you. So any plans for tonight?" Fary said flirting some. "I'm looking more beautiful then I did in the gym, hope you can handle a Unova girl." Fary laughed some. "I'm a bit more experienced in somethings then Kanto girls." Fary said making it clear what she was implying.

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