It was a quiet night when Deoxys descended from the heavens.
Believed to not be of this world, it went on a rampage, leaving death and destruction in its wake.
Finally defeated by an unknown force, the tragedy of unparalleled magnitude it created remains in the heart of every human.
To make sure that something like this will never happen again, every wild PokÃ¨mon powerful enough to cause such mayhem must be captured, controlled or killed.
Needless to say, this year has been a bad year for Legendaries. This year has also been a bad year for Champion Trainers.
But my year... Has been... THE WORST!
Author's Chapter Notes:
Oppressive Sprite Mesprit
"How goes the proceedings?" a familiar voice asked as she looked up, and was surprised to have let someone as big as Lugia slip her notice. Being tired and not able to sense his aura had something to do with it, but she also knew the greatest reason was that Lugia somehow seemed smaller than she remembered. He was still massive in every dimension compared to her, but she vividly remembered how unspeakably gargantuan he had seemed when she was still an infant. Between being raised by both him and Giratina, she thought there was no wonder why she was so difficult to intimidate.
"Same as before you left," Mew answered quietly, "It seems that no matter how we go about it, No Man's Land will put a halt to our solution."
There was a moment of silence as she hovered in front of Lugia. Finally, she lowered herself to the ground and sat down. She had hoped to go see Lucario to help get her mind off things, but decided to stay with Lugia for a while to see what his personal opinions were. If there was anyone's judgment she had come to trust, it was his.
" It is such a shame," she said, thinking about the people still discussing matters back in the main chamber, "We spent so much time and effort to assemble, and now it all amounts to us stopping a local insurgency while the real problem is ignored."
"Indeed," Lugia said while letting the feathers around his eyes flutter slightly, "Perhaps we do not require a collective to handle a situation of such nature?"
"Absolutely, if we were to show ourselves to the public now it would simply hasten the declaration of war " Mew replied quickly as she had already thought along those lines, when the meaning of what Lugia had said suddenly hit her, " Wait Do you mean "
Lugia let the silence drift between them for a moment as he looked down at her. She had become the exact likeness of her mother, and he felt a little out of breath as he remembered her last words once more. He hated himself for what he was about to do, but knew it was for her own good. This time, the true danger to her life was not among enemies in the ferocious wild, but among friends in her peaceful sanctuary.
" I can still remember the day you were born," Lugia said quietly after his short reminiscence, "To me, you are still a little child But I know that in truth, you are strong, wise and independent Perhaps even more so than I am."
Mew could not believe what she was hearing. She knew she must be interpreting his words poorly, because there was no possibility the Lugia she knew so well was asking of her what she thought he was. Lugia, the one who had always opposed every task assigned to her that bore even the slightest resemblance to danger. Lugia, the first one out to commence a search whenever she and Celebi had ditched their education to go explore the world. Lugia, the very same who insisted on protecting her like a baby even after she had grown up, surpassed him in power and defeated the strongest Pokémon in the world.
"Time is of the essence, because this situation may escalate with every passing day," Lugia continued as he looked away from her as to not falter or hesitate, "Go. I have full confidence in you However, should things become dangerous, I want you to abort and return immediately. Do you understand?"
"Yes!" Mew exclaimed happily, feeling her exhaustion lift like an exorcised curse. After decades of constantly improving herself, she had finally gotten him to acknowledge her maturity and strength. She wondered if it was thanks to her encounter with Deoxys and Ethan, and could not wait to tell the wonderful news to the latter.
"One more thing," Lugia said as he knew there was one more thing left to make sure of if his plan was to work, "You should not tell anyone of your departure."
"Why?" Mew asked as she calmed down, realizing that her giddy response might have revoked his newfound respect for her.
"You were accompanied here by someone, were you not?" Lugia continued as he craned his neck down towards her, being careful not to let his seething hate for the brash Lucario show, "Are you able to convince him to stay here as to not slow you down?"
"Of course!" Mew replied confidently before realizing the only reason he was here to begin with was because she had failed at just that, "Well I should be "
"There is no reason to fret. You will only be gone for a short period of time," Lugia assured her with a gentle smile, "Much like you, he is also an independent soul. I will personally see to it that his stay becomes pleasant."
Hesitation coursed through Mew, but after a few seconds of thinking she nodded in agreement. Lucario still had much to learn, and would benefit from staying with the wise Lugia for a while. He had followed her because he was worried about being ambushed and captured by powerful trainers, something that was nearly impossible now that he was among so many powerful legendaries.
As she exited the passage, Mew saw Mesprit hovering in suspended animation. The even smaller legendary was diligently practicing her ability to form an astral body, a task Mew knew would take her a few more years to master. Creating a being capable of sensory perception mostly out of skin residue and air was a very difficult thing, and Mew hoped the best for the younger psychic. Mesprit was guarding the passage and if she had sensed someone's aura she would have sprung to life in an instant, but as things were Mew knew she would be able to sneak by without much effort. Not far from the exit was a bed of plants that she believed to have been created by Celebi, and on top of it laid Lucario and Zerobi, peacefully sleeping next to each other.
A quick look told her that their muscles were strained, and she realized Lucario must be working to get back into shape after letting her pamper him for so long. A dissonant smile crossed her face as she remembered Lucario's very short attempt at sparring with her, which ended up with him not being able to move for the duration of the day. Even so, she felt a bit sad over the fact that Zerobi had no problems doing what Mew had denied him all this time. It was obvious to her now that they were a much better match for each other.
She flew away from them quietly as to not wake them up, and started planning on how she would get past whichever of the legendary birds was currently keeping watch. She stopped halfway through her planning, as a new set of thoughts interrupted her. Turning around, she looked at Lucario and Zerobi once more.
It would give the two of them more time to catch up. If Zerobi had any interest in Lucario, this would be the perfect time for them to get closer without her there to interrupt. Indeed, her silent departure was beginning to seem more and more like the perfect plan. She spun around once more, but could not bring herself to move away this time.
Mew did not understand. Why was she hesitating? Finally, she could fly free once more! No need to move at a Slowpoke's pace, hiding under a cloak and hoping Lucario wouldn't do anything too stupid to make them both get caught! No useless physical training, no snide remarks about everything and everyone, and no need to explain every obvious little detail regarding Pokémon!
A noise like a cough came from Lucario as he stirred, Mew flinching in surprise. She moved closer to make sure she had not accidentally spoken her thoughts out loud and woken him up. He was still sleeping like a log, just as he had every day they spent traveling together. She had hated all the unnecessary stops at first, but came to enjoy the fact that it had given her an excuse to rest more frequently than ever before. Had she been by herself, she would never have allowed such leisure.
Although she was reluctant to admit it, she knew there were many things Lucario had taught her as well. Disregarding his strange and even dubious claims about the difference between being human and Pokémon, his carefree view of life had somewhat enriched her own. His ability to see the absurdity in everything had rubbed off on her, and made it easier to come to terms with what she herself did not understand. For what she predicted was to come for the world, she knew it would be an invaluable skill.
Mew looked down at Lucario. Suddenly, she let her tail give him a light tap to the head, quietly hoping he would wake up. That way, she could tell him what she was about to do, and he could at least tell her what he thought. Maybe he would say something funny to ease her mind before she left? Maybe he would even demand to follow her once more, so he could help her handle the situation of No Man's Land? Maybe, just maybe, their time together wouldn't have to end like this ?
She shook her head. She knew she was being selfish. She would only be gone for a few weeks at most, and the lives of many depended on her constant vigilance and speed. With a quick turn, she sped away from Lucario so he would not suddenly wake up and ruin her newfound determination.
As she flew out into the raging storm, the past few months suddenly felt like a fleeting dream. Here she was again, risking a lifetime of slavery to ease the burden of strangers. Hiding herself Fearing everyone And once more, she was completely alone.
- - - - - - - - -
A new day was dawning. Lucario had finished his morning berry and spent the next few minutes heaving, much to Zerobi's amusement. After that, he had been pacing back and forth restlessly around the cave which seemed to grow more cramped than ever with each step. He needed to speak to Mew with increasing urgency, realizing that every passing moment in which he did not warm Mew about Lugia was one where the paranoid legendary might get to her first.
Zerobi was leaning against a wall while reading another newspaper Azelf had brought with him, her complaints about the uninteresting content falling on deaf ears. Mesprit was hovering by the entrance to the inner chambers, seemingly devoid of any consciousness. The legendary thunderbird Zapdos had come back a few moments earlier, roosting on a higher section of the cavern in an uncharacteristic display of calmness. Lucario knew that between upholding a storm and keeping up with the rigorous debates, she must be completely exhausted.
"Could you You know Take it easy?" Zapdos asked drowsily as she could not stop her eyes following Lucario around, "It's difficult enough getting some rest without you running back and forth."
"Damn it," Lucario huffed in response to anyone who would listen, "I've had enough of this. Is Mew finished in there yet?"
"Heh. I'd say," Zapdos said casually as she overheard him, "She left last night."
Suddenly, Lucario stopped walking and stood still as he looked up at her, a bewildered look on his face.
" What?" he asked, not believing what he had heard.
"Yeah. She's gone to No Man's Land to fix that whole thing," Zapdos explained, glad to see the eager Lucario finally give it a rest, "She told me not to wake you. Not that I could, you snore like a "
Zapdos stopped herself when she noticed Lucario was no longer there, wondering if this is what other people felt like whenever she took off hastily.
"Uh " was all Mesprit had time to say as Lucario spun past her and ran into the passage, fury contorting his face. He paid little mind to not bump into his surroundings this time, thinking that Lugia would have an easier time dealing with a flood than him right now.
"Stop!" he heard Mesprit shouting from behind, obviously trying to follow him, "I demand that you stop!"
Lucario ignored her and continued running. Fighting was one thing, but when it came to running long distances, he knew not even a legendary would be able to catch up with him. Over a year of constant walking and running had strengthened his legs, something he not imagined would come in handy in a situation like this. Then again, he had never imagined a situation like this even happening to begin with.
"Lugia!" Lucario shouted as he ran into the room where the gigantic legendary sat, "What did you do!? What did you tell Mew!?"
Lugia had his back turned to him, but spun around at a leisure pace to face him with a confused look. Then, his expression turned into one of clarity.
"I informed Mew of a potential solution to the current situation of No Man's Land," Lugia said calmly as he regarded the small Pokémon by his feet with a smug smile, "She volunteered to handle it so we may resume with our decision regarding the real issues."
A chilling sensation crept up Lucario's back. It was as he feared; Lugia had spoken to Mew, and now he was truly alone against the massive legendary. He barely paid notice to Mesprit coming up from behind, and she stopped herself to see what was happening.
" She really left?" Lucario asked with a defeated stare, somewhat out of breath after the previous spurt, "Then Why the hell am I still here!?"
"Our differences aside, time is much too critical for her to have been able to bring you with her," Lugia explained casually while never breaking eye contact with Lucario, "That is a fact."
"I don't believe a word of it!" Lucario yelled angrily, a hint of doubt in his voice as the words she had spoken to Mewtwo regarding his existence echoed through his mind, "She She'd at least tell me if she was planning on leaving!"
"Make no mistake, Lucario. The decision to send her alone was mine," Lugia explained before his expression because just as stern and menacing as it had the night before, "But the decision to sneak out as to avoid you Was hers."
Everything froze for Lucario. Was it possible ? Everything had gone down just like she had told Mewtwo it would. Lucario's memories regarding Pokémon had all but disappeared, and so he was not the Ethan she had hoped to bring back Even after all this time together, did she regard him as nothing but a disappointment? Behind a veil of tolerance, did she actually hate him?
"No " Lucario whispered to himself as he realized what must have happened. She had been completely fine until she ran into Lugia, who had an obvious grudge against the two of them. He cringed as he imagined what the giant legendary must have told her, and that was assuming he hadn't just filled her head with lies.
"YOU'RE the sneaky asshole here, not Mew!" Lucario burst out in pure rage as he clenched his fists, "What did-"
"I have heard enough of this!" Mesprit suddenly interrupted, grabbing a hold of Lucario with her psychic powers. Lucario was completely taken off guard and lost control of his body, being dragged back through the passage by an invisible force. Lucario glared hatefully at Lugia who stared back at him with intensity, as a deceivingly gentle smile caressed the old legendary's face.
"How dare you speak to Lugia that way!?" Mesprit yelled angrily when the two of them had gone about halfway through the passage, slamming Lucario ferociously against the wall with her powers. Lucario twisted and turned to rid himself of her hold, ready to fight her the moment he touched ground again.
"Easy," Lucario growled between gritted teeth, "He's an old creep and I hate him."
"You insolent fool!" Mesprit shouted back, her two tails swishing back and forth in annoyance, "You You're just a regular Pokémon! You should be worshiping him for even allowing you to be here among us legendaries!"
"Allowing me!?" Lucario snapped back as he pushed harder against the psychic powers, rage filling him and strengthening his lingering urge to beat her up, "I'll have you know, I came here to help you ungrateful bastards save the world!"
"No, you didn't " Mesprit said slowly, letting herself calm down as she eased up on her restraining powers a little, just to make certain she wouldn't accidentally crush him in her anger.
"You came here as a pet," she said bitterly while looking up at Lucario, "Do you really think you or anyone of your inferior kind can help us in any way? You even turned out to be less than useless, having verbally assaulted the great Lugia."
"Y You little shit! I'll kick your ass!" Lucario burst out with fury, his rage reaching its peak with Mesprit's demeaning words. He refused to accept it; the only thing the future had in store was his fist in her mouth and a smile on his face. He tugged manically at the small legendary's invisible force, which was currently the only thing holding him back from going completely berserk. However, no matter how hard he fought against it, he could not break the hold she had over him, and only grew more and more exhausted with each try.
"They assigned me to be your babysitter, you know " Mesprit continued with the same sour tone to her voice as she yawned while watching his vain attempts at escaping, "I came all this way just to stay outside and make sure you don't get out of line Which you did, anyway. I should be in there, why couldn't they have picked my brothers to take care of something this simple ?"
"BASTARD!" Lucario bellowed and continued his mad struggle for several minutes until there was not an ounce of strength left in him. He considered using his trump card in a last act of spite, but knew he required far more control of his body to pull it off. A vicious groan slipped from his mouth as he finally tired and hung limply against the wall. At long last, Mesprit released her grasp of him, but stayed alert in case he tried anything. He slumped down on the ground, drained of all energy.
" The next time you come back, I'll punish you for real," Mesprit muttered as she turned around to go see if Lugia was fine, "Now, go play and stay out of our way. We legendaries have important business to take care of."
Lucario saw her disappear further in as he punched the ground in exasperation. In his mind, he tried to replace the rocky floor with Lugia's superior smirk and Mesprit's demeaning look, but it did nothing to rid him of his pent up frustration.