Sorry for the lateness of this post!
- Hedwig (Noctowl)
- Burd (Fearow)
- Zappy (Magnemite)
- Squidward (Tentacool)
- Burgie (Haunter)
- Sleepy ZZZ (Drowzee)
- Pointy (Female Nidoran)
- Nointy (Male Nidoran)
- Smokey (Koffing)
Following the loss of Hercules at the gym in Olivine I was unsure where I needed to go next. I knew there was a gym in Cianwood City across the sea but was that it? Apparently yes it was, in fact, I was probably meant to do that gym before the Olivine City one but never mind… We arrived outside the gym and confidently walked in. It was a fighting gym and I had two flying Pokémon (Hedwig and Burd) plus Sleepy ZZZ the Hypno, I’d be fine. Everything was until I got to the gym leader… Or rather as close as I could get – three boulders were blocking the way.
Dragon: “Hey! Um… Hello Mr Gym Leader, could you possibly step in front of the rocks for me so that we can battle?”
Chuck: “Only one strong enough to move the boulders is strong enough to face me. You must teach Strength to one of your Pokémon.”
Dragon: “Strength is a Normal type move, that doesn’t make sense!”
Chuck: *shrugging nonchalantly* “Game logic!”
Dragon: “Crap, Hercules was the one that knew Strength… OK, time for someone else to learn it.”
The whole team looked each other, embarrassed. Finally, Hedwig stepped forward.
Hedwig: “Thing is… No one can learn it…”
Dragon: “UGH! Fine! To the PC!”
Upon opening my box and looking at my meagre reserves (Smokey the Koffing) I realised I didn’t have any Pokémon that could learn the move. Would I have to catch a Pokémon for the sole purpose of using Strength? A small amount of hope dawned on me – I hadn’t caught a Pokémon on the island yet!
I fished and caught… A Magikarp… Powafish the Magikarp could not learn Strength. I racked my brain then remembered the pair of Nidoran that I’d put in the day care.
Dragon: “Euuuuuuuuurgh the day care is so far… I don’t wanna goooo…”
But go we did.
Day care man: *pretend shock* “My goodness! We found an egg! No idea how it got here!”
I looked over at the two Nidoran, Pointy (female Nidoran) and Nointy (male Nidoran), lounging on a picnic blanket by the river, feeding each other chocolate covered strawberries.
Dragon: “It sure is a mystery. Right you two! Time to take you out to the real world!”
Nointy: “Yes! Pointy, it’s finally happening! With the help of Dragon we can hatch our egg and tour Johto, finding the perfect place to raise our child!”
Dragon: “Euuuuh… Well actually…”
Nointy: “You know, I was thinking somewhere near Route 38, there’s lots of Normal type Pokémon that our baby can Double Kick to grow big and strong.”
Dragon: “Actually, Smokey and Powafish are going into the day care, Pointy is coming with me, and Nointy you can… You can sit in the PC with your egg. It’s not really worth me having technically the same Pokémon on the team.”
Nointy: “What?! No! You can’t separate us! Pointy, don’t go! Let’s run away together!”
Pointy: “Look Nointy… I’m really sorry but… It was fun while we were in day care and all but… I don’t know, I just kind of feel like you’re smothering me. I need to get out and get to know myself, have some fun, see the world, before I settle down for good, you know?”
Nointy: “But… All those things we said…”
Pointy: “All those things you said. I’m sorry Nointy, I was in it for the fun. I’ll see you later OK?”
Nointy: *getting sucked into the PC* “Wait for meeeeeeeeeeeeee…”
There was a silence as the team awkwardly pretended they hadn’t eavesdropped on the whole conversation.
Pointy: *sidling up to Burd, batting her eyelids* “Hey there…”
Burd nervously edged away slowly.
As it was Pointy couldn’t learn Strength until she evolved but she’d levelled up so much in day care that that wouldn’t take long. Sure enough, a few battles in and I had myself a Nidorina.
Pointy: “Hey Zappy, check out my new body.”
Zappy: *briefly glancing over* “Uh-huh.”
Dragon: “Will you knock it off!”
Pointy: “Sorry Dragon, just… So alone for so long in the day care…”
Dragon: “You were there for less than a week!”
Pointy huffed and waddled away awkwardly on her newly evolved legs.
We made our way back to Cianwood City where Hedwig and Burd swooped and cawed at Chuck’s Pokémon until they begged for mercy, I even got Sleepy ZZZ out of the PC to help with the taunting. They were no match for us. We marched out of the gym happily, gloating over our 6th badge…
Woman: “Excuse me, did you just get the Storm Badge?”
Dragon: “Yeah, isn’t it awesome?”
Woman: “I have something that might be use-”
Dragon: “No time to talk! Hero in the making here! Time for the next gym! Bye!”
It was a long walk to Mahogony town and when we got there I was surprised at how small it was. I was also not very happy about two things: First of all, the gym here was an ice gym. I don’t like fighting Ice Pokémon much, they can get tricky. Secondly, everywhere was blocked off and I kept being told about the Lake of Rage.
For my first issue I put Zappy, who was becoming my go-to Pokémon, in the PC for a little break, he was 5 levels higher than anyone else so he could stand it, and took out Nointy the Nidoran instead. I figured with both Nidoran and Nidorina knowing double kick that would count as some fighting moves for kicking some ice type ass, then Zappy could take care of the rest.
Nointy: “Pointy! You’re still here! I was so worried about you! Finally, we’re together again!”
Pointy: “Oh, hey Nointy, this is awkward but… I’m with Sleepy ZZZ now.”
Sleepy ZZZ: “Sorry dude…”
Nointy: “But… You’re my one and only… We have an egg together!”
Pointy: “It’s nothing personal, it’s just… I’m a Nidorina now and you’re still a Nidoran. You’re just too immature for me.”
Nointy: *Eyes welling up with tears* “I am not immature!” He started ugly crying. I felt bad for the little Guinea-pig critter and picked him up to give him a cuddle.
Nointy: *Struggling* “Put me down! I am a strong Nidoran and I’ll evolve soon! I am too mature to be cuddled! I don’t… I… OK, I mean, that’s kind of nice.”
He finally relaxed and snuggled into my arms with his head resting on my shoulder, glaring at Sleepy ZZZ, who was discussing the wonders of the universe with a fascinated Nidorina as they walked behind us.
Sleepy ZZZ: “It’s like… We’re a region, and there are more regions which makes a world… But we’re also like… In another world.”
We set out for the Lake of Rage to calm down some Gyarados… On my way up I captured a Girafarig named Friglet who was sent straight to the PC. on reaching the lake I headbutted trees for ages until I found an Exeggute, which was awesome considering I had no grass type Pokémon anymore. Fritatta was also sent to the PC for the time being though, being vulnerable in the ice gym. On top of that Nointy, also evolved.
Pointy: “Oh, wow, Nointy you look… You look amazing.”
Nointy: *Examining his reflection in the lake* “Woo! Looking good!”
Pointy: “I mean did you want to like… Go headbutt some trees together?”
Nointy: “You know what? I’m good. I just need to focus on me right now. I’m getting into this challenge, you know?”
Pointy: “Oh… Yeah… Totally…”
I looked at the lake and sighed. Time to sort this Gyarados out! First though, something had been weighing on my mind.
Dragon: “Can I talk to you, Hedwig?”
Hedwig: “Sure, what’s up?”
Dragon: “It’s just… I’m sure you’ve noticed but your attacks just don’t do a huge amount any more, I mean you are a great tank and for now you’ll remain a great tank but I was thinking…. I don’t want to lose you, and… Don’t take offence but I was wondering if you’d like to retire after this gym? You could be my flying Pokémon, I’d take you out to fly all over the region with you but keep you out of battle.”
There was an awful silence and I started to wonder if I should have brought it up at all but then Hedwig smiled.
Hedwig: “In all honesty I have been wondering this myself. I can’t keep up with these new Pokémon on the team – soon I’ll just be dead weight. Don’t make any important decisions without your ol’ pal Hedwig, though… You can’t be trusted!”
Dragon: “Of course, you’re my voice of reason.”
Hedwig: “Burd and I were saying we want to travel together once this challenge is finished. It’s good to know that dream is a step closer.”
Dragon: “Thank you for understanding Hedwig. I’ll miss you while you’re in the PC though!”
Hedwig: “I’ll see you often enough, Fly is a popular HM.”
We smiled and walked back to the group. I leapt on Squidward and we surfed to the middle of the lake where a large, red Gyarados was raging up a storm.
Dragon: “OK, we got this! It’s going to have some mean attacks so Hedwig, get us started and tire it out!”
Hedwig swooped into battle, pecking the Gyarados as he flew past. The Gyarados retaliated with Thrash and suddenly Hedwig stiffened, and started to fall from the sky.
Dragon: “HEDWIG?! Squidward quickly!!!”
We surfed as fast as we could, and I managed to catch Hedwig before he fell into the sea.
Dragon: “Hedwig, what happened?! Are you OK?!”
He slowly shifted his wing to show a bloody wound in his side.
Hedwig: “It got me, Dragon.”
Dragon: “No it can’t have done! You’re my most defensive Pokémon! You’ll be OK, we’ll get you to a Pokécentre and-”
Hedwig: “It’s OK Dragon…” *cough* “I’ve had my time” *cough* “It was an honor to work by your side… Please… Finish the challenge. You can do it, I know you can. You can make it to the end.”
Dragon: *crying* “But… I wanted you there with me…”
Hedwig: “I’ll always be with you… In spirit… Just remember…” *cough, cough* “Don’t… Be… An… Idiot.”
With that Hedwig’s eyes closed for good, I buried my head in his feathers and sobbed. The clouds darkened over the lake and I lifted my head to meet the gaze of the awkward-looking Gyarados who was beginning to wonder if it should just leave quietly.
Dragon: “You. You bastard.”
Red Gyarados: “I was just defending myself!”
Dragon: “He was so close to retirement and you stole it from him!”
Red Gyarados: “I mean… I don’t know what to say, I’m sorr-”
Dragon: “Here I am trying to calm your stupid fish ass down, so that Team Rocket can’t exploit you and your Gyarados family, and you kill the companion most precious to me!”
At this point the Gyarados started slowly sinking into the lake, trying to sneak away under the water and leave me to my raging.
Burd hurtled towards the Gyarados’s retreating head. “Oh no you don’t, you murderer! YOU KILLED MY BROTHER!”
I held out an arm to stop the distraught Fearow in his tracks.
“It’s okay, Burd. I’ve got this one.”
As my bemused Pokemon watched from the sidelines, I beat seven bells out of that blood-red monster. By the time I finally allowed it to slip away under the surface of the water and skulk back to its lair, I’d wrung enough experience out of its bruised face to level up twice. But it still wasn’t enough to negate the loss of my beloved Hedwig.
We took Hedwig’s body back to land. That night we built a prye, and cremated him under the stars, there was not a dry eye in the team. Hedwig had been a friend to everyone and the voice of reason, always steering us towards victory. Burgie, my only Pokémon remaining from my original team (if you’d told me that he’d me my last original standing at the beginning of this challenge I wouldn’t have believed you), gave a heartfelt eulogy and each team member said a few words. For a minute I thought I saw the silhouette of a Croconaw watching respectfully from the water, but it must have been my imagination. When I looked back it had gone. Finally, we let the wind carry Hedwig’s ashes away into the wind so that, even in death, he could still travel the world.
- Burd (Fearow)
- Squidward (Tentacool)
- Sleepy ZZZ (Hypno)
- Pointy (Nidorina)
- Nointy (Nidoran)
- Zappy (Magneton)
- Burgie (Haunter)
- Smokey (Koffing)
- Fritatta (Exeggute)
- Fritlet (Girafarig)
- Powafish (Magikarp)
- Hedwig (Noctowl)