My first story.Please Review and comment on my mistakes so I can fix 'em!It starts out a bit short and bad on the earlier chapters, but rewrites for them are being done as I write this. So, if you don't get too hooked by them, please read on, and give this a chance.Reviews are very much welcome. But, if It's gonna be a bad one, please explain what went off so I can work on it. If It's just like 'Hey your bad I dun liek you 111eleven', then please refrain from reviewing.Anyways, enjoy.Disclaimer: All publicly recognizable characters, settings, etc. are the property of their respective owners. The original characters and plot are the property of the author. The author is in no way associated with the owners, creators, or producers of any media franchise. No copyright infringement is intended.Comments, questions, or anything like that? I can be reached by pressing that 'contact' next to my penname and sending me an email.
"It's 7 In the Morning already?" He asked himself "I overslept... I'm three hours late already..." He picked up the 'III' Band from his stand and put it on his left forearm, then quietly left the room.
As he was walking down the dimly lit corridors, he came across a Hypno who was mumbling something to himself. He was wearing a band with a "1" on it.
"The nerve of those fools, doing this" He mumbled.
"What's the matter?" III asked, looking at the Hypno walk down the corridor, eyes on the floor as he kept cursing under his breath.
"Massive desertion" The Hypno answered in an angry tone "Did you know Van Burke resigned last night?"
"I had no idea" III answered almost immediately, remembering the promise he and V made to Van Burke "But... How is that Massive?"
"The ones that followed him" The Hypno answered "Along with him, several of our employees from the fifteenth unit resigned as well... Apparently, this little act of misguided morality that XV pulled off got something going on them. And Van Burke's resignation only gave them that push they needed... We believe Carmine and Lapis were in charge of the whole thing."
"Those two, huh?" III said. He had always been intrigued by the way those two followed XV around. It wasn't just obeying orders, or sucking up to the boss... What those two had with him was actual friendship. "I can see why that would bother you so much... You have to update the information and mark their names as Deserters. That's what you first unit ones do..."
"Call it 'Administration'" The Hypno answered as he disappeared into the darkness, further into the corridor, still grumbling and mumbling things. "The nerve... A Whole week's work, just to cover those..."
III stared in the direction the Hypno had headed for a moment before he continued walking down the corridor... A Short walk later, he had arrived at a larger room, where XII was addressing his unit.
"How many times do I have to tell you, you slackers?!" The Aggron roared angrily, pounding one of his gigantic hands into his chest "Something like THIS" He slammed his fist into the wall, causing it to collapse "Happens... You have to be there to fix it! Some poor Sneasel wanted to get the hole in the North Wall fixed... You weren't there! Now that poor Sap's locked in VIII's room, enduring Who Knows what torments she has planned for him! All Because of you!"
"Sorry, Sir..." The Apology came from amidst the crowd. Making it impossible to see who said it.
"What?! Who said that?!" XII looked among his troops, trying to find out who apologized "Oh, It's you, Dean. Right, little Aron?"
"Yes, sir..." Came from within the large group once again.
"Well, don't be!" XII answered in a somewhat proud tone "Cuz' You're not gonna make that mistake again! We're builders, for crying out loud! Have you learned your lesson?!"
"Yes, Sir!" The roar came in Unison form the Crowd
"Then get to work and fix this wall I broke!" XII commanded, pointing at the wall he had smashed a while ago "And I want to see it finished in an hour... Or I'll break it down again!" He looked down at III, who was walking by him at that moment "Hey, III!"
"What is it?" III turned around to ask the Iron Giant
"Here" He handed The Lucario a Welding Torch.
"What... What's this for, again?" III asked, curious as of why he was receiving this from XII. He had no idea what he was supposed to do with it. Not that he didn't know how to handle one, It's just He really couldn't think of what XII expected him to do.
"Hand it to XIX when you have the time... That Lazy Vaporeon's got some Maintenance to run in the Underwater Passages! It's like, the one thing we ask him to do regularly... And he won't even do it!"
"Got it. I'll give it to him on my way out."
III left the room where XII was and kept walking, arriving in the large room where they usually rested after work. The fountain by the other end of the room where VI and VIII would get together and talk was still off. And there he was. Lying sprawled as wide as he could on the Grey sofa, the blue figure of XIX.
"You've got work today" III told the Vaporeon, who seemed to be half- asleep.
"Nah... Think I'll pass" XIX answered, not even looking at where III was standing.
"Underwater passages need maintenance" III said, hoping that mentioning the one thing XIX cared about would make him change his mind.
"I'm on it!" XIX leapt from the sofa and landed standing and ready, in front of III.
"Get to it, then" III replied "But, for crying out loud, use the do-"
Before III even finished what he was about to say, XIX was standing in front of one of the windows. He took a few steps back, then jumped out of it, making two flips in the air while yelling from the top of his lungs "Here I come, water! Come on, bums! Maintenance day!" He called into the water that awaited below as he fell towards it.
III didn't even look out the window: He knew what was about to happen. And he was right. A few seconds later, XIX's cheerful and excited scream was silenced with a loud 'Thud!'... III just held his palm to his face, shaking his head sideways. This was not the first time this happened to XIX... And he was sure it would not be the last.
His thoughts were interrupted by an optimistic "Didn't hurt!" that came from the window.
"Good" III called back, throwing the Welding Torch out the window, into the water "Because you forgot this"
"Gee, thanks!" Came XIX's answer, followed by another "Here I come, water!... For real!"
III just left the room and kept walking down the hallways, all the way until he was at the Fortress' Main Entrance. Like the rest of the place, it would be dark if it wasn't for the lights. However, unlike the rest of the place, it wasn't lit with the dim blue and purple lights. It was lit by a pair of intense, white ones, positioned on either side of the archway that led into the fortress. IX and XVIII were talking by one of the lights.
"Come on! You can tell me, buddy!" The Rhyperior nudged IX, pushing him back by accident.
"You already know what my answer is..." The Absol replied "It's..."
"Don't you dare" XVIII said, predicting what IX was about to say "Say Estelle and you're in for it!"
"Okay, then... Astra" IX's tone seemed to change from a serious one to a caring one, if only for a moment. "Those Blue eyes make me feel lost... Shame I met her like that..."
"Well... Astra's better" The Rhyperior was about to nudge IX again, stopping when he remembered what happened when he did "By the way... You're acting differently when you say their names today. What's the matter?"
"I've got a mission on the Sinan forest today... III and V will be working in Desina as well" IX's tone faded back to the low, serious one.
"What?!" XVIII showed surprise when he heard his friend mention this "Why didn't they tell me?! You're going there by yourself?!"
"Things are different now, B." IX said, walking away towards the Spatial Gate "I'm all grown up now... And I am strong. If they come again... It'll be the last thing they ever do..."
"Alright, kid" XVIII waved a 'goodbye' salute at the Absol "Just be careful out there... And tell the little ones I say 'hi'... That is, if they remember me..." He turned around as well and headed back inside, passing by III on the way. He stopped and told the Lucario "He told me you'll be working in Desina today... Check on him before heading back, please."
"V and I will be working together today. I'll be sure to go and see how IX's doing"
"Thanks" XVIII muttered as he entered the Fortress.
III kept walking towards the Spatial Gate. The path towards it was adorned with more of the white lights, and, adding a strange mixture of Taste and Imposition to the path, Statues of each of the Midnight Voices covered the road. The only exceptions were two empty pedestals, one where the deserter XV would be, and another one, which never had anything on it since III could remember. As he passed V's statue, a hand grabbed his shoulder. Anyone else would have jumped at this, but III just stood still, not even bothering to look at who this was.
"Nice try, V" He said, quickly grabbing hold of V's hand, and slamming him against the floor in one quick swing.
"Hey!" V laughed, still on the floor "You're good! Senses sharp as a razor, eh?"
"You know it" III answered, holding out his hand so V could help himself up "Now come on, we've got work to do. It's 7 in the morning, so we're running late"
"You can tell what time it is?" V asked in a mixture of amusement and curiosity "You don't need to check a clock or something?"
"You've known me for eight years... I thought you already knew that"
"Yeah, but... I don't know how you can even tell"
The two walked towards the gate until they were standing right in front of it. There, waiting for them, was IX. He seemed different today. Unlike most times, he was not serious and cold. He even seemed to be showing some anxiety.
"So... You're here" IX said, trying to hide the tension he was feeling "Took you long enough... Let's go. I will search the Sinan forest and you will search the neighboring town of Desina." He turned around and walked towards the gate "I might take longer than I should on this assignment. But, don't worry. I assure you I will be fine. There is no need to look for me like XVIII asked you" He continued as he walked into the gate, then spoke out "Take me to the Sinan forest" And, in a flash, he was gone.
"Guy's different today" V said, staring at the gate "I think he's nervous"
"Wouldn't you be?" III answered as they both headed into the gate themselves "He's about to go back to the exact place where it all happened... He'll probably run into them again. Let's just hope he wins if he does"
"What's there to be afraid of?" V said casually "IX's grown to be one tough little bastard. I don't think they'll stand a chance against him"
"Well, he does some stupid things when he loses his temper... As rare as that might be"
"Yeah, I remember" V answered, heading into the gate with III "Take us to Desina"
The world dissolved around them again as they disappeared from the fortress. Leaving the place silent and alone again...
They appeared in a dark alley, away from where someone would see them, and walked out into the streets. The town was a peculiar sight: Dark green grass at the side of the dirt roads, adorned by several Rawst trees that were growing on it. The Sun was shining down on the street, adding to the already overwhelming heat of the place. But something was amiss: There was no one on the street.
"So..." V asked as he looked at the empty roads. They were practically in a Ghost town. "Where's everyone? This place is usually bustling."
"They're hiding" III answered as he began to walk down the street, looking for a suitable row of trees to pick the berries from "Didn't you know? Everyone stays at home or in crowded spots nowadays. Since the Mightyena from the forest have begun to spread and are practically in control of the town. The only ones who can hold them off are the law authorities. And they're not doing much."
"Well, whole town to ourselves, then!" V gave his cheerful reply as he followed his friend , Stopping next to a particularly large row of trees "What? Do you think these ones will do? Because this might take a while..."
"You think?" III said with a confident smile as he took a few steps back, readied himself, and, suddenly, launched himself at full speed towards the trees. He ran so quickly that all V could see was a blue blur moving along the trees. Seconds later, III was standing in front of his friend, holding three large, bulky pouches in one hand. "All done. One thousand Rawst berries. We even saved IX the job, and..." He raised his other hand, in which he was holding three Oran berries "I even got us some of this"
"On, I'm III, I'm III, I think I'm so fast, I think I'm so fast..." The Gallade said mockingly as he saw the Lucario holding their mission's entire objective in one hand "Anyway, I was thinking... Since it's supposed to be our day off, and all... Why don't we head to The Tainted Grace? I mean, we are done here, so..."
"Sure" III Chuckled "You just want to head there so you can hit on the waitre-
He was interrupted by a yell from above them. They looked up to see a Mightyena come flying from the forest, howling in panic before he hit the ground, dead. He had a scar near his right eye.
"Holy Shit!" V said, surprised, as the dead canine landed in front of him "What the hell was that?!"
"Came from the forest" III answered, examining the body, noticing the scar "Hey... Look at this... Does this guy look familiar to you?"
"No way..." V looked at the scar as well and realized what had just happened "IX, right?... IX did this?"
"Well, It's the same one from... Yes. I think it was IX."
"Man..." V said as he held his hand to his forehead, looking at the body "Remind me never to mess with that kid... Look at this. You weren't lying when you told me IX's dangerous when he loses his temper..."
"Well, this one had it coming" III got up "IX's been waiting for years for this. I guess nothing you do ever really goes unpunished... Anyway" He changed the subject, looking at V "You said we should head to The Tainted Grace, right? Let's do that" He walked away, followed by V.
They walked along the cream- colored buildings until they reached one that was colored a deeper shade of lime green. That was The Tainted Grace. They were about to enter when they were approached by a ragged and dusty- looking Pachirisu, who was crying. He didn't seem to be more than a few months old, to the most.
"Please, Mister!" The squirrel hugged III's leg, sobbing "Help! My mom and sister were attacked by the Mightyena! They need help, And I can't do nothing!"
III looked into the tear- covered eyes for a few moments before handing him the Oran Berries he was holding. "Here" He said, as he gave the little one the berries, then dug into his bag and pulled out another bag, full of Money "Use this as you see fit. I hope your family gets better". The squirrel gave III a thankful hug before running away, heading to help his family.
"Well, look at that" V patted his friend on the back "The tin dog had a heart all along!"
"Shut it" III answered, opening the door to The Tainted Grace and walking in "Those are innocents. Whatever our goal may be, they have no blame. If you refuse help to someone like that, You have no sense of honor whatsoever."
"Well, well!" Came from their right as they walked in "Look who it is! Same old Steel Fist, trying to save the world and conquer it at the same time... When are you gonna pick what you want to do?"
"It's good to see you too, Zoey" III answered, turning to the right to face the one he was talking to. She was a Floatzel. Her fur seemed to be browner than most of her kind, not to mention her flotation sac and the fins at the side of her paws were cream- colored. She had a purple Barrette on her left ear. "And, since I'm seeing you again after such a long time, I'd like to ask you: Why didn't you ever tell us the reason your sister retired was because she was having a daughter?"
"Well..." Zoey answered, legs crossed and placed on the table she was sitting at "I really never felt like it was anybo- Wait a minute! How do you know?"
"Because she just found out, and now she's traveling to Selenia to find out about her mother!"
"I don't get it" V said, approaching Zoey "Why wouldn't her mother tell her she was a champion? Makes no sense..."
"Well... Alice never really made much sense" Zoey answered "She was hasty like that. That's actually why we became fighters. One day she was like 'Hey, Let's go become famous!' Next thing you know, we're at the Arena... She was just like that. And the way she had to go sucks. You two didn't do it, did you?"
"Nah. That was XI." III answered "Smug bastard just killed her off. Still, there's not much I could do about it without being declared a traitor... Sorry, Zoey"
"So, who was her father?" V asked "Was it the Crimson Claw?"
"Well, actually... It was you, Steel Fist"
"What?!" The Lucario's eyes shot open when he heard this "I-I'm... I'm her-"
"Just kidding!" Zoey answered, almost laughing "But you should have seen the look on your face! Huh... But, yeah. It was Isaac. He was her father"
"I knew it!" V called into the air "It had to be that guy!"
"It's no big surprise, though" Zoey told him "They were lost in love with each other. The only problem came when Alice made up her mind that she didn't want her daughter to live like that. I've no idea where he is right now..."
"One more time, Zoey... I'm sorry" III said "If I had known she'd be fighting against us in the Takeover, I would have done everything I could to prevent this..."
"Well, no point crying over it, huh?" Zoey answered "I have to go. It was nice to see you again... I guess" She got up, left some money on the table, and walked out of the place.
"Bummer..." V murmured in a depressed tone.
"Wanna move on to the counter?" III asked him.
"Yeah, Let's do that..."
They sat down in two empty places at the counter and waited for the waitress to come and ask them what they were having. They didn't have to wait long before a Gardevoir wearing a black apron over her white dress approached them from the other side of the counter.
"Hey, you two" She said "Whatcha having?"
"I'll have some of the Aged Grepa juice" III answered in an idle tone. His attention was clearly focused on something else.
"And I'll have some of the Aged Grepa as well" V said "And a date, if you're giving those away"
"I've already told you I'm not going out with you" She answered "You're weird... And you're almost never around, anyways"
"Oh, come on!" V said "Give me one try. One try is all I ask, to prove you I'm relationship material! Yes?"
"What do you think" The waitress asked III "Should I give him a shot?"
"Well, you could try..." III answered "Although I should probably warn you, he usually gets up about twelve o' clock in the afternoon and eats thrice what any normal Gallade would..."
"Okay, maybe I need some extra energy, huh?" V told the Lucario "Come on, please? Give me one chance... Please, Fay?"
"Okay..." The Waitress said as she handed them two glasses "First of all, here's what you ordered. Second of all, I'll think it over. You've got until the end of the day to impress me, okay, sword boy?"
"Okay! A day's all it takes to love me!... Well, a week, really, but you get it..."
"Shut it and drink" III told him, drinking from his glass "We've got quite the day off ahead of us"
"Well, you're right on that. It's about damn time we got some rest... Resistance freaks keep messing us up..."
A Few hours later...
"Hey, are you okay?" V asked III when he noticed that, apart from that one sip he had taken hours ago, he hadn't drank at all. "What's on your mind, man?"
"I'll tell you..." III answered, still idle "But... You gotta promise It'll stay a secret"
"Alright..." V told him, taking another drink "What is it?"
"I've been having those dreams again..." III told him "You know, the ones with-"
"Yeah, I know" V replied "To be honest, I've been having those as well... Pretty weird, huh?"
"You said it. Especially if you conside-"
"Heed one, heed all!" Came the voice of another Lucario who had just walked into the place "I've heard this is the place where the strong ones gather, yes? So here I am, proposing all who wish to join me an exciting mission! Let us go and find the lost land of the Tenai! Who's with me?!"
"Well" III huffed "Another fool who wishes to find Yuka... He's not the first, and he won't be the last..."
"On that you are mistaken, brethren of mine!" The Lucario answered "I will find Yuka, for I know it's location and how to enter it! I don't think I should discuss this with you. By your looks, you two couldn't even know what Yuka is!"
"Oh, we do" V answered "And we've tried to find it. Difference is, we didn't go and brag about our plans. We headed out to find it, and, like the others, failed"
"Then perhaps you wouldn't mind a test of your knowledge?" The Lucario said in a clever tone as he sat down next to them.
"Bring it" III answered "I'll prove you I know way more than you do about that place"
"Fine, then... First question. What are the requirements to find and enter Yuka?"
"Kindness of heart" III replied "Beauty of spirit. Camaraderie. A Brave and Untamable resolve, A wish that one desires sincerely, and Lust for adventure and knowledge, yet not for fame and glory."
"Well, it seems you are not as dimwitted as I thought you'd be! Next question: The requirements to enter Tena Yuka mention 'A Brave and Untamable resolve'. This is often considered to be a hint to whom, exactly?"
"It is considered a Hint to the Brave" III answered "One of the heroes mentioned in the legend and prophecy of the silver hero, in both the old and future chants that the Tenai themselves wrote"
"Good! And, as a final: Tell me: What does the future chant mention of the Brave?"
III thought his answer over. He was trying to remember the words from that read he got so many years ago... After a while, he finally answered "I shall recite that which the Future Chant mentions.
'Tempered by Tragedy and Steeled by hardship
The Brave has walked a path of suffering.
In his back, he carries the weight of sins and crimes
He blames himself for, in spite of knowing himself innocent.
Devoid of fears, yet consumed by regret
He is a soul that has lost itself in the darkness.
He will march into battle, with no fear nor regard for his health.
Death would mean his freedom. He has nothing left to lose.
Yet not all is lost, for out there is a light
Waiting to shine in his darkness
Soon, his eyes shall open again
But he will also regain fear.
This will not stop him, however, from seeking the vengeance he is after
The Brave and courageous are not those with no fear.
They are the ones who overcome it
And, thanks to this light, he shall find his path again.
He loathes his father above all, calling him a fool and coward
Yet his soulmate will grant him both insight and a dilemma
He shall forgive his father, and try to understand his pain.
He shall meet one new fear: To repeat the same mistakes his father made
Behold, the soldier gains a reason to fight his war again
Not for glory, not for vengeance
But to save his loved ones from pain
And so the hollow one finds light anew
After the dark one is finally slain
Watch our land find peace once again
Peace finds the soldier in his mind as well
Free from the pain to which he once fell.'
And there you go" III finished and took a bow, trying to taunt the other Lucario.
"Well... Impressive!" The Lucario answered "Quite wise, you are! You are perfect to join me in my journey!"
"I'm not wise" III answered "I'm merely knowledgeable. They are not the same thing. And, although I am flattered, I do not wish to search for a lost land."
"Fine, then" The other Lucario answered "It was still a pleasure to know another of my kind knows Yuka in more than name... I shall go out and seek help somewhere else. If you change your mind, I can be found at Isa Yuka. I shall see you later"
"Whoa... Pretty cool!" V nudged III "I didn't know you knew about this kind of stuff! You totally got him!"
"Well, I know some things... You know..."
"FREEDOM! PEACE AT LAST!" A Growlithe came running into the place, his tail wagging in a show of pure happiness.
"What, what's the matter?" Fay asked the hyperactive puppy that was standing on his hind legs, front paws placed on the counter.
"Freedom! Can you believe it? They're kicking the Mightyena out! The Angels finally interfered!"
"Angels?" V asked, not understanding what the Growlithe meant.
"That's how they call the Absol around here" Fay answered "They've warned us of countless disasters already. So the younger ones just call them that."
"Ah... Say, III... Do you think IX had something to do with it?"
"Most likely" III answered "He promised he'd get back at them. That's probably just him doing it."
"Oh, okay..." V said as he went back to enjoying the Aged Grepa. Suddenly, came the sound of the door opening again as Leon, Tiffany, Sasha and Phoebe walked into the place.
"Don't turn around" III warned V "But someone we're looking for just walked in here..."
"Oh, great" V said as he and Leon saw each other "So much for a quiet day..."
'Voices of the past':
"Should have been me... He should have gotten me instead... That traitorous bastard... But... When I get him... I'll make him wish he had..."
'Voices of the future':
"There" Van Burke said as he pulled the needle out "That compulsive need should be gone now... But, please, refrain from using any moves that are beyond our species for the next forty eight hours... Or else the result could be... Bad. Let's just say that..."