NaRe 2020 Day 8

An oldschool edgy badass sue that hints at a more interesting oldschool edgy badass sue story, a pair of pokemon vs human fics that make slightly more sense than usual but still have issues, yet another fic that starts interesting only to cuts to people sitting around being boring, and cults!

https://www.fanfiction.net/s/13473124/1/The-Other-Side-of-the-Coin (0)

Write out numbers with letters.

You wouldn’t capitalize animal or mouse or dragon, so you shouldn’t capitalize words like pokemon or pikachu or charizard. The only time you should capitalize it is if you’re using it as the pokemon’s name, ie, Ash’s pikachu is called Pikachu. This is because you only capitalize when it’s a proper noun, which are the names of places or things. Similar reasoning should be applied to any other words you’re thinking of capitalizing, like trainer or professor or gym.

[I haven’t had any jobs yet ]

Okay, so you seem to be running into a common problem with wanting her to sound super cool and edgy but not wanting her to actually have done anything wrong. You’re going to have to bite the bullet here – you simply cannot go on and on about how she’s an assassin from a family of assassins but also has never done a single crime by age eighteen. You can compromise by walking back the “assassin” thing to general crimes including assassination and then say so far she’s only done lesser crimes…but honestly, you’ve built this around her having the singular character trait of being a skilled murderer from a family of skilled murderers, and someone like that trying to abandon it all and go on a pokemon journey is a way more interesting setup.

[“The Princess Assassin,” they call me. I’m not sure how much they’ve thought through that name. It can be read a different way than they intend it to. (Which is the way I always see it.) ]

…I mean, yeah, but that’s because it doesn’t make sense to say it that way. If she’s the princess of the assassins in that she’s the kid of top assassins and completely living up to that legacy, it’d be more common to say “the Assassin Princess”. Princess Assassin would be more likely if there was something princessy about her bearing so that her actions were princesslike – having a very girly but fancy style, being considered “refined” or “noble”, etc.

Arceus do they not.  ]

Arceus is not actually a big thing in the pokeverse – really, legendaries in general are not, and Arceus is one of the most obscure of all of them. Her swearing by Arceus would imply her family is actually of some ancient and secretive cult whose beliefs are completely divorced from everyone around her, and if they are some ancient and secretive cult, it’d make more sense to pick a legendary that fits in with the rest of your setup. And given they apparently don’t have any interest in pokemon to the point they refuse to keep them even as pets, it’d make even more sense for them not to deify any existent pokemon and be either secular or some sort of human-focused religious belief.

[And being known criminals, I didn’t have any friends either. I don’t know if it’s just because they were afraid, or if they just wanted to make fun of me behind my back, but no one ever talked to me.

Okay, so if she can’t even tell if people are making fun of her behind her back, I really don’t buy that she’s any good at this assassination business. She apparently can’t read people’s behavior, manage the most rudimentary stalking to hear what they’re saying when she’s not around, or even just the basic level of reasoning that people are probably not going to make fun of you for being a terrifyingly skilled murderer of a family of terrifyingly skilled murderers.

[This is where my story begins. I’d read on the internet that there was a professor who traveled around a lot, and did research on the history of the world through culture and ancient ruins, I think it was. That could be my chance to get a Pokemon and start my journey, and get away from my parents. ]

Okay, so supposedly this person is a total badass who’s more skilled than anyone else and yet by age eighteen, you really think her only option for getting a pokemon is to ask a professor?

She could buy a pokemon. She could steal a pokemon. She could kill someone and take their pokemon. She could hunt down a wild pokemon herself given you say her family doesn’t care about keeping pokemon because they’re skilled enough to not need them.

Seriously though, this is exactly where overpowered characters get super entertaining, when they’re trying to do something totally unrelated and generally frivolous to everyone else. Super assassin girl who’s killed hundreds just wants to go on a walkabout with some L5 fluffball. Her family sends wave upon wave of ninjas after her to force her back into the family business and she has to fight them off with her 1337 skillz and many throwing knives in time to get to her first gym battle!

https://www.fanfiction.net/s/13473180/1/Samuel-s-Adventure (0)

You wouldn’t capitalize animal or mouse or dragon, so you shouldn’t capitalize words like pokemon or pikachu or charizard. The only time you should capitalize it is if you’re using it as the pokemon’s name, ie, Ash’s pikachu is called Pikachu. This is because you only capitalize when it’s a proper noun, which are the names of places or things. Similar reasoning should be applied to any other words you’re thinking of capitalizing, like trainer or professor or gym.

Dialogue is written as “Hello,” she said or “Hello!” she said, never “Hello.” She said or “Hello.” she said or “Hello,” She said or “Hello” she said. The only exception to this is if the next sentence doesn’t contain a speech verb, which is a verb describing how the dialogue is said. (“Speak” is not a speech verb.) In that case it’s written as “Hello.” She grinned, never “Hello,” she grinned or “Hello,” She grinned or “Hello.” she grinned. Note that something isn’t a speech verb just because it’s a sound you make with your mouth, so generally stuff like laughed or giggled is in the second category. Furthermore, if you’re breaking up two complete sentences it’s “Hi,” she said. “This is it.” not “Hi,” she said, “this is it.” or “Hi,” she said “this is it.” And if you’re breaking up a sentence in the middle, it’s “Hi. This,” she said, “is it.” The same punctuation and capitalization rules apply to thoughts, except you don’t use quotation marks or any other ones with thoughts.

Paragraphing has rules. You start a new paragraph with a new subject. The goal is not to divide your story up into even blocks. Also, a new speaker means you start a new paragraph.

Write out numbers with letters.

https://www.fanfiction.net/s/13473349/1/Adventure-in-Dalat (0)

You shouldn’t have spaces in front of punctuation.

Dialogue is written as “Hello,” she said or “Hello!” she said, never “Hello.” She said or “Hello.” she said or “Hello,” She said or “Hello” she said. The only exception to this is if the next sentence doesn’t contain a speech verb, which is a verb describing how the dialogue is said. (“Speak” is not a speech verb.) In that case it’s written as “Hello.” She grinned, never “Hello,” she grinned or “Hello,” She grinned or “Hello.” she grinned. Note that something isn’t a speech verb just because it’s a sound you make with your mouth, so generally stuff like laughed or giggled is in the second category. Furthermore, if you’re breaking up two complete sentences it’s “Hi,” she said. “This is it.” not “Hi,” she said, “this is it.” or “Hi,” she said “this is it.” And if you’re breaking up a sentence in the middle, it’s “Hi. This,” she said, “is it.” The same punctuation and capitalization rules apply to thoughts, except you don’t use quotation marks or any other ones with thoughts.

https://www.fanfiction.net/s/13473379/1/Unexpected-Winter (1)

Okay, I’m not sure what’s going on with your quotation marks here. You’ve got them in front of what looks like normal paragraphs of narration, as if the idea is that someone is telling this as a story to someone else, only you don’t put them in front of all the paragraphs, just half. It also looks like you’ve got other half-stripped formatting, with backslashes and “span” stuff.

You wouldn’t capitalize animal or mouse or dragon, so you shouldn’t capitalize words like pokemon or pikachu or charizard. The only time you should capitalize it is if you’re using it as the pokemon’s name, ie, Ash’s pikachu is called Pikachu. This is because you only capitalize when it’s a proper noun, which are the names of places or things. Similar reasoning should be applied to any other words you’re thinking of capitalizing, like trainer or professor or gym.

And plotwise… I mean, sneasel are cool, sure, and an apparently pokemonless poor drifter is an unusual character, but the description is really disconnected and the sentences are overly complex tangles.

[“That was all I could think as I trudged through the obscuring blizzard, laying a thick layer of snow upon the forest floor making it difficult for even the native Piloswine to traverse through.  ]

I’m not precisely sure where “obscuring blizzard” goes so wrong, but it’s nails on chalkboard to read. And of course a blizzard is going to be obstructing someone’s sight, so it’s as needed a modifier as “non-transparent rock”. And the tenses are a mess – not only does this read like you’re saying the trudging is laying down the snow, but also surely by the time you’re trudging through it, the blizzard’s already laid down plenty of snow rather than just now getting around to it?

Not to mention if an ice type pokemon specifically good at traveling through layers of snow couldn’t handle this, I really don’t think a human would be able to move at all. (And I don’t think anything short of over-the-head snow could possibly do it.) Those kinds of comparisons don’t work when the gulf between abilities is so huge.

https://www.fanfiction.net/s/13473466/1/WinWin

[With the exception of raindrops gently pattering against the roof, the room was soothingly absent of the usual cloud of chaos the team seemed to carry wherever they roamed.  ]

Your language seems a bit more elevated than actually works. If by “cloud of chaos” you just mean quiet, say quiet. If you really mean “cloud of chaos”, I don’t see how a gentle, steady, and non-chaotic sound could be the opposite – really, since when is “gentle pattering” the exception to a soothing atmosphere?

[He emitted periodic yawns as his consciousness drifted between the waking and sleeping worlds. ]

Similarly, “emitted” yawns, really?

https://www.fanfiction.net/s/13473529/1/Pokemon-Emerald-Nuzlocke-Barely-Hoenn-on (1)

Script format’s banned.

You wouldn’t capitalize animal or mouse or dragon, so you shouldn’t capitalize words like pokemon or pikachu or charizard. The only time you should capitalize it is if you’re using it as the pokemon’s name, ie, Ash’s pikachu is called Pikachu. This is because you only capitalize when it’s a proper noun, which are the names of places or things. Similar reasoning should be applied to any other words you’re thinking of capitalizing, like trainer or professor or gym.

https://www.fanfiction.net/s/13473662/1/The-journey-begins (1)

Capitalize your title correctly.

You wouldn’t capitalize animal or mouse or dragon, so you shouldn’t capitalize words like pokemon or pikachu or charizard. The only time you should capitalize it is if you’re using it as the pokemon’s name, ie, Ash’s pikachu is called Pikachu. This is because you only capitalize when it’s a proper noun, which are the names of places or things. Similar reasoning should be applied to any other words you’re thinking of capitalizing, like trainer or professor or gym.

Opening your story with a character waking up for the day is generic and horribly, horribly overdone, and to be honest, it’s so incredibly dull and boring a start that even if I hadn’t seen it, very literally here, thousands upon thousands of times before, I would still tell you you should have started at some other, interesting point.

Dialogue is written as “Hello,” she said or “Hello!” she said, never “Hello.” She said or “Hello.” she said or “Hello,” She said or “Hello” she said. The only exception to this is if the next sentence doesn’t contain a speech verb, which is a verb describing how the dialogue is said. (“Speak” is not a speech verb.) In that case it’s written as “Hello.” She grinned, never “Hello,” she grinned or “Hello,” She grinned or “Hello.” she grinned. Note that something isn’t a speech verb just because it’s a sound you make with your mouth, so generally stuff like laughed or giggled is in the second category. Furthermore, if you’re breaking up two complete sentences it’s “Hi,” she said. “This is it.” not “Hi,” she said, “this is it.” or “Hi,” she said “this is it.” And if you’re breaking up a sentence in the middle, it’s “Hi. This,” she said, “is it.” The same punctuation and capitalization rules apply to thoughts, except you don’t use quotation marks or any other ones with thoughts.

You wouldn’t capitalize animal or mouse or dragon, so you shouldn’t capitalize words like pokemon or pikachu or charizard. The only time you should capitalize it is if you’re using it as the pokemon’s name, ie, Ash’s pikachu is called Pikachu. This is because you only capitalize when it’s a proper noun, which are the names of places or things. Similar reasoning should be applied to any other words you’re thinking of capitalizing, like trainer or professor or gym.

Write out numbers with letters.

https://www.fanfiction.net/s/13473713/1/Who-said-devils-can-t-be-guardian-angels (1)

Capitalize your title correctly.

You wouldn’t capitalize animal or mouse or dragon, so you shouldn’t capitalize words like pokemon or pikachu or charizard. The only time you should capitalize it is if you’re using it as the pokemon’s name, ie, Ash’s pikachu is called Pikachu. This is because you only capitalize when it’s a proper noun, which are the names of places or things. Similar reasoning should be applied to any other words you’re thinking of capitalizing, like trainer or professor or gym.

You have a lot of sentence fragments and typos. I’d strongly suggest getting a beta reader.

[Humanity quickly called for peace after, luckily the Pokemon accepted but not without crippling the human race.

First, They slit us apart, we had to make hundreds of villages aside from the big cities, which are the backbone for all the villages.

Then, They Reduced our technology when it came to weaponry, the most dangerous weapons now being huntsman rifles.

Lastly, they hit another important form of technological advancement, communication. Defiance talked about devices that could let you hear someone from miles away almost instantly, The closest thing we have to that is telegrams and only Elders can use those things.]

…okay, so I’m glad there’s at least an explanation for how humans can even manage their walled villages if they’re in constant conflict with pokemon, but this could stand to be thought through further.

Why are there big cities at all? What are they doing that the pokemon felt was necessary to allow if they wanted humans spread out? Why did pokemon think hunting rifles, a level of technology we actually do not even see in canon and that can absolutely kill a pokemon, was a perfectly acceptable level of weaponry? Why do they hate radios more? Why do they otherwise leave humans alone and let them invent religions about how all pokemon are evil?

Splitting humans up into small groups makes a degree of sense, and actually banning weapons instead of thinking guns are fine would as well. Completely leaving humans alone past that to plot whatever they feel like…that’s much harder to understand. How do they even know humans aren’t secretly developing banned technology?

[I sighed things have been heating up lately well for humans at least. The Elders have really been pushing a call to action against Pokemon and so have a lot of other villages.

Some villages have even reported catching Pokemon and using them as tools, those villages have been given high praise from Alpha and Omega, our large cities names.]

How are they keeping this a secret from the pokemon? Kidnapping pokemon and spreading word around that you’re doing it should reignite the war immediately. And it’s not like the pokemon are just weirdly against violence, since you say that they massacred more than half his village when he was a kid, so why hasn’t whatever village kidnapped pokemon been burned to the ground, and why haven’t both cities been leveled for supporting that?

And in the other direction…even if he knows that the original conflict was humans attacking pokemon and the specific anti-pokemon propaganda stuff he hears isn’t true, the fact in his own lifetime pokemon killed three out of five people in his village while burning everything important down to things as basic as their food supplies without explanation means he has actual evidence for them being evil. You really need to better explain why he’s so sure pokemon are good, fighting them is evil, and that he wants to be friends with everyone.

Dialogue is written as “Hello,” she said or “Hello!” she said, never “Hello.” She said or “Hello.” she said or “Hello,” She said or “Hello” she said. The only exception to this is if the next sentence doesn’t contain a speech verb, which is a verb describing how the dialogue is said. (“Speak” is not a speech verb.) In that case it’s written as “Hello.” She grinned, never “Hello,” she grinned or “Hello,” She grinned or “Hello.” she grinned. Note that something isn’t a speech verb just because it’s a sound you make with your mouth, so generally stuff like laughed or giggled is in the second category. Furthermore, if you’re breaking up two complete sentences it’s “Hi,” she said. “This is it.” not “Hi,” she said, “this is it.” or “Hi,” she said “this is it.” And if you’re breaking up a sentence in the middle, it’s “Hi. This,” she said, “is it.” The same punctuation and capitalization rules apply to thoughts, except you don’t use quotation marks or any other ones with thoughts.

https://www.fanfiction.net/s/13473730/1/Pok%C3%A9mon-Spring-Autumn-Volume-2 (0)

You wouldn’t capitalize animal or mouse or dragon, so you shouldn’t capitalize words like pokemon or pikachu or charizard. The only time you should capitalize it is if you’re using it as the pokemon’s name, ie, Ash’s pikachu is called Pikachu. This is because you only capitalize when it’s a proper noun, which are the names of places or things. Similar reasoning should be applied to any other words you’re thinking of capitalizing, like trainer or professor or gym.

If you’re breaking up two complete sentences it’s “Hi,” she said. “This is it.” not “Hi,” she said, “this is it.” or “Hi,” she said “this is it.” And if you’re breaking up a sentence in the middle, it’s “Hi. This,” she said, “is it.” The same punctuation and capitalization rules apply to thoughts, except you don’t use quotation marks or any other ones with thoughts.

[“I’m sure,” said Claire, “Bisharp, let’s shut her up!”

“Camerupt,” said Dustra, brushing the desert sand almost lazily off of her headscarf, “Let us put Team Power in their place.”

“How much further, Vasi?”

Liam glanced up from his bowl of noodles at his friend Mori.]

…Okay, so the thing where you opened with stuff happening, that was good. The thing where it bait and switches to something boring a couple paragraphs in, interrupting the stuff happening right when it was getting going? Much less good. This is like you’re trying to follow the letter of the rule while kicking the spirit of it into a ditch.

I think there needs to be more said about exactly how to balance the whole “interesting opening” and “necessary setup” because that seems to be an enormous problem with pokemon fanfic.

https://www.fanfiction.net/s/13473764/1/Cutting-to-the-Heart-of-the-Matter (0)

Eh, even making it clear the pokemon’s the one doing the pursuing and that the trainer cares deeply about her can’t quite offset how uncomfortable everything else around this is. She can’t communicate even simple things to him and has no real autonomy. She doesn’t like the constant checkups and they’re unnecessary but he insists on them and she finds the way the nurse touches her uncomfortable and embarrassing but has no way of expressing boundaries outside of outright violence, which everyone treats as her being unreasonably temperamental and spoiled. I think it’d have come off a bit better if this really was a necessary occasional checkup and not a monthly unnecessary humiliation.

https://www.fanfiction.net/s/13473807/1/Insurgence

You wouldn’t capitalize animal or mouse or dragon, so you shouldn’t capitalize words like pokemon or pikachu or charizard. The only time you should capitalize it is if you’re using it as the pokemon’s name, ie, Ash’s pikachu is called Pikachu. This is because you only capitalize when it’s a proper noun, which are the names of places or things. Similar reasoning should be applied to any other words you’re thinking of capitalizing, like trainer or professor or gym.

Semicolons should only ever be used when connecting two complete sentences and even then almost never.

[“Once we have fulfilled our end of the bargain, I’ll kill her,” Miss Persephone replied. “The ritual is starting in five minutes. I expect to see you upstairs.”

“Why bother wiping her memories if she’s just going to be killed?” the voice muttered.]

So, I’m assuming you do have a reason here, but it’s generally not a good idea to point out something makes no sense and then drop it. Even if you want to draw out the question from the reader’s point of view, it’s not a good use of space to have dialogue that’s doing nothing but repeat the question everyone’s capable of thinking themselves and it raises other questions about why fellow cultists would need to be being kept in the dark. (And if there is a reason why Persephone isn’t telling them things, then that’s more relevant information. Instead of just being overall baffled, they could be confused because she’s obviously got some plan but they don’t know what.)

[The Pokemon floated over to Taylor and dropped a note in her lap. It read: Get up. Follow Mew, get out of here, and never look back. Taylor studied the Pokemon, slack-jawed. So it was Mew. She turned her attention back to the note, flipping it over. There was more writing: Mew can transform both itself and you if you give it a piece of DNA. Use this ability to help you escape. It was simply signed, your benefactor. ]

So, this is a very videogamey setup where there’s exactly one person calling all of the shots. It’s not “work together with Mew” it’s “figure out how to use this tool to solve puzzles”.

[“Mew,” she whispered, “check that fingerprint scanner for DNA!” Mew obeyed. It sniffed the scanner, and gave a happy cry of “Mew!” Taylor nodded. “”Now try to transform me.”

Mew began to glow for a second, and then the glow was transferred to Taylor. She blinked, and suddenly she was taller. She looked down to find herself in the body of a 16-year-old girl. She was wearing a robe like the ones she saw on the other figures.]

How exactly did copying a bit of DNA get her a new outfit? If you want to handle it this way, have transform be a matter of copying what’s seen the way it works in the games and anime, and perhaps they have to jump someone and stuff them back in Taylor’s cell so they can replace her. That’d also be a bit more active on the problem-solving front than just walking forward.

Write out numbers with letters.

[This is my first true attempt at true writing, so it’s probably pretty bad.  ]

Not really. If you’re concerned about improving, however, I would suggest looking into a beta reader over general reviews. Reviews are nice but rarely go into great detail.

https://www.fanfiction.net/s/13474050/1/Pok%C3%A9mon-Ziz-A-Survival-Horror-Pok%C3%A9mon-Story (0)

Dialogue is written as “Hello,” she said or “Hello!” she said, never “Hello.” She said or “Hello.” she said or “Hello,” She said or “Hello” she said. The only exception to this is if the next sentence doesn’t contain a speech verb, which is a verb describing how the dialogue is said. (“Speak” is not a speech verb.) In that case it’s written as “Hello.” She grinned, never “Hello,” she grinned or “Hello,” She grinned or “Hello.” she grinned. Note that something isn’t a speech verb just because it’s a sound you make with your mouth, so generally stuff like laughed or giggled is in the second category. Furthermore, if you’re breaking up two complete sentences it’s “Hi,” she said. “This is it.” not “Hi,” she said, “this is it.” or “Hi,” she said “this is it.” And if you’re breaking up a sentence in the middle, it’s “Hi. This,” she said, “is it.” The same punctuation and capitalization rules apply to thoughts, except you don’t use quotation marks or any other ones with thoughts.

[Pokémon are… They are monsters. They are a threat to us all. I… I have studied them since it all began, in search for weaknesses and ways to defeat them.

But first… tell me a little about yourself, would you? Now, tell me… Are you a boy or a girl?”

The radio cracks, and she responds with a feminine voice:

– I… I’m a girl.

“All right… Let’s begin with your name.” – Says the professor. – “What is it?”

– I don’t… I don’t remember. I think someone used to call me… Sz… Ziz?

“Right… So you don’t remember. Let’s just go with Ziz for now. Listen, I don’t mean to scare you but… Your very own pokémon legend is about to unfold. A world of nightmares and horror with pokémon awaits… You should get out of there. Do you see the exit? It should be to your right if you’re facing the radio to speak to me.”]

Well, that’s definitely a twist I haven’t seen on the standard opening.

I’m not sure whether there’s much of anywhere to go after that, though. The explanation that they summoned her to get an idea of what kind of technology humans have in non-pokemon worlds makes sense but means there’s nothing else special about her, so it’s unclear what she has to offer as a protagonist. If it hadn’t been a complete failure and she did have some skills it’d be one thing, but by all appearances she’s as helpless as any native.

https://www.fanfiction.net/s/13474063/1/Youth-Youth-Youth (1)

You wouldn’t capitalize animal or mouse or dragon, so you shouldn’t capitalize words like pokemon or pikachu or charizard. The only time you should capitalize it is if you’re using it as the pokemon’s name, ie, Ash’s pikachu is called Pikachu. This is because you only capitalize when it’s a proper noun, which are the names of places or things. Similar reasoning should be applied to any other words you’re thinking of capitalizing, like trainer or professor or gym.

Dialogue is written as “Hello,” she said or “Hello!” she said, never “Hello.” She said or “Hello.” she said or “Hello,” She said or “Hello” she said. The only exception to this is if the next sentence doesn’t contain a speech verb, which is a verb describing how the dialogue is said. (“Speak” is not a speech verb.) In that case it’s written as “Hello.” She grinned, never “Hello,” she grinned or “Hello,” She grinned or “Hello.” she grinned. Note that something isn’t a speech verb just because it’s a sound you make with your mouth, so generally stuff like laughed or giggled is in the second category. Furthermore, if you’re breaking up two complete sentences it’s “Hi,” she said. “This is it.” not “Hi,” she said, “this is it.” or “Hi,” she said “this is it.” And if you’re breaking up a sentence in the middle, it’s “Hi. This,” she said, “is it.” The same punctuation and capitalization rules apply to thoughts, except you don’t use quotation marks or any other ones with thoughts.

Write out numbers with letters.

11 Comments

  1. CrazyEd says:

     Princess Assassin would be more likely if there was something princessy about her bearing so that her actions were princesslike – having a very girly but fancy style, being considered “refined” or “noble”, etc.

    “So, we need you to assassinate this enemy general.”

    “Are they the daughter of a royal monarch?”

    “No?”

    “Sorry, no can do.”

    2
  2. APen says:

    [Super assassin girl who’s killed hundreds just wants to go on a walkabout with some L5 fluffball. Her family sends wave upon wave of ninjas after her to force her back into the family business and she has to fight them off with her 1337 skillz and many throwing knives in time to get to her first gym battle!]

    Thanks for the plot-bunny! Behold what you have wrought.

    The Saga of Kali, Star Destroyer, and the Lily of Death (part 1)

    Professor Birch blinked in confusion at the young woman standing outside his lab. She was somewhere in her mid-teens, draped an over-sized leather jacket that Birch vaguely recognized as designer. Her dark-washed jeans were tucked into knee-high red boots. The buzz-cut that stretched over half of her head was either a serious razor mishap or the latest fashion. Recalling a recent commercial for Devon’s Mark X PokeNav, Birch guessed the latter.

    “Are you sure you’re in the right place, Ms—” He tried to remember the short, plain-text email “—Mortis?”

    The girl nodded, a broad smile on her face. “I am, Professor Birch. Thank you for taking the time to meet with me.”

    Off-balance at this pleasantry—Birch spent most of his time with ten-year-olds on the verge of temper tantrum—he stepped aside to let her into his laboratory.

    She took in the disordered desk-space with a sharp, evaluative glance, eyes darting up to the windows around the lab.

    “It’s just a little unusual, choosing to get a lab starter this late,” Birch continued, following her in. “If you’re looking for a more, erhem, high-powered Pokémon to catch you up to your peers, a breeder would be your best bet or a commercial reseller—”

    “I want a lab starter,” the girl said flatly. “It’s traditional.”

    Traditional for trainers who lacked the money to pick up a more advanced or exotic starter, Birch didn’t say. By the look of her clothing, she certainly had the option.

    “Excellent,” he chose to boom instead, “you’re right, of course, Ms Mortis—”

    “Please Professor, call me Lily.”

    “Lily, right, well you see, it’s the off-season, and I’m afraid I don’t have much of a selection to offer you. All I have left is a single torchic, and she’s a bit—”

    “I’ll take her,” the girl said instantly.

    “Right, right.” Professor Birch fumbled around his desk, until he found the pokeball. He stared for a moment at the yellow post-it note affixed to the ball, which read, “Spoiled little bastard. Save for coordinators.”

    Birch looked back over to the girl, who was following his movements closely. Something about her posture struck him as strange. She wasn’t slouching even a little. Well, a more mature trainer should be able to handle a badly-behaved starter . . .

    Birch clicked the release mechanism. Well-informed by past experience, he made sure to aim the light well away from either of them. The torchic that emerged dove forward, its beak tensed. Finding no target for her peck attack, the torchic chose instead to direct a glare at the two human occupants of the room.

    “Meet Torchic,” Professor Birch said, “She’s, er, got a lot of personality.”

    “Look at you!” cooed the girl. To Birch’s amazement, she managed to lift the torchic without getting pecked and squeeze it to her chest. “She’s perfect, Professor.”

    “Wonderful, wonderful,” Birch murmured, still feeling off balance. He could see the torchic was squirming frantically, but the girl’s grip was iron. “Now, let me walk you through the starting essentials.” He stared at her small, silver backpack, which bore the bright gold logo of MiniMex. “Sleeping roll, tent, rations, don’t forget potions…”

    “I have all that, Professor,” the girl said patiently.

    “And don’t forget antidotes. The poison types in Petalburg forest have quite the sting!”

    “Not really,” the girl said. “If you mean shroomish poison, it’s only fatal once it’s been heavily distilled.”

    Birch and the girl stared at each other. The torchic gave up its futile struggles and settled on a piercing glare that promised fiery death for both of them as soon as she properly perfected ember.

    “Is that so,” Birch said in a distant voice. “Is that so. Are you—are you looking to go into research, Lily?”

    The girl shook her head. “You’ll be wanting your fee,” she said after a moment.

    “Yes.” Professor Birch blinked when the girl held out a 100,000 yen note. “Er, give me a moment, I must have change somewhere…” He glanced helplessly around the messy lab.

    “You can keep it. Is there anything else?”

    “No,” Professor Birch said. “Nothing else…”

    Three hours later, he had almost managed to forget the whole encounter. That is, until the door of his lab exploded inwards, and a band of masked men strapped him to a chair, demanding to know what, exactly, his business had been with the Lily of Death.

     

     

    1
    1. CrazyEd says:

      This gives me the idea of a character who exists in an original and unique take on the pokemon world, and just absolutely insists on following the cliches to a tee no matter what happens, with a constant :| on their face.

      1. Indiscretion says:
        Ooh, what take?
        1. CrazyEd says:

          I dunno, just something that isn’t the stock cliche near-rote-repetition-of-the-opening-of-the-anime formula and unnecessary injection of video game tropes that most Pokemon fanfic uses. Not, like, original original, just like original enough by the standards of Pokemon fanfiction to be called original.

          1
  3. APen says:

    Kali, Star-Destroyer, and the Lily of Death (part 2)

    Kali, Star-Destroyer, was having a miserable day. It had been a project of many months to get the loud-mouthed human to keep his hands to himself. But in the last hour she had been poked, prodded, and squeezed to her limit, until at last the human girl had set her down on the ground and continued down the road, humming. Kali had followed out of a lack of better options. She had no idea where food could be found in this damp, unpleasant forest. Humans, despite their myriad of failings, were at least a reliable source of food.

    Kali made a point of keeping her distance, her gaze fixed on the surrounding trees, not the human. It took her a moment to register that the human had come to a stop and was conversing with another human.

    The other human was a little shorter, with hair the color of mud. The mud on her clothing matched her hair.

    “Wait,” the other human was saying, “You just, you just have a torchic? Are you kidding me, or ..?”

    Kali’s human smiled broadly. “Oh my gosh, I’m so sorry to be bothering an experienced trainer like you. It’s just, you see, my family would never let me go on a Pokémon journey. I mean, they’d literally kill me first, you know? So this is my first day as a trainer.”

    “Oh.” The other human’s face crinkled in sympathy. “No, I get it. That sucks. Hey, I just caught a nincada to train up. He might make a decent match for your torchic. How about we have them battle?”

    Kali’s human bit her lip, her eyes glittering. “Are you sure? That’s so sweet of you.”

    Kali observed with interest the way the other human blushed a pleasant shade of red. “S-sure, it’s no problem. Come out, Diaspa!”

    “Torchic!” Her human called. “Time for our first battle!”

    Kali, Star-Destroyer, eyed her opponent unenthusiastically.

    “Start off with peck!” her human bubbled.

    Kali supposed it would be unbecoming to do nothing. She wouldn’t want to appear frightened of such a dirty, ugly little bug. All the same, this hardly called for her full strength. She jogged forward to make a half-hearted peck attack.

    “Harden, and then use sand-attack.”

    Kali coughed as a flurry of dirt was flung in her face. She shook her head back and forth, her eyes squeezed shut, trying to get herself clean.

    “Great! Follow up with scratch.”

    Those claws hurt! Kali fell to the ground, feeling miserable.

    “Uh, I guess that’s it,” the other human said, sounding sheepish. “Seems like you and your torchic aren’t really in sync yet.”

    Kali’s human laughed. “I guess we have some work to do!”

    “You know…I caught a surskit today, on my way down. I think I’ll be sticking with nincada as a bug type, so if you’re looking to build out your team…?”

    “You want to give it to me?” Kali’s human said flatly. “Why?”

    “Uh, well, I don’t need her and I figure, it’s not your fault you’ve had to start so late…”

    “You’re a kind soul, aren’t you,” Kali’s human said after a moment of silence.

    “I-I don’t know about that…”

    “Thank you, but I want to catch my second pokemon on my own. That’s the traditional way, right? But thank you, Sweet-heart, and keep safe!”

    “I wonder if all pokémon trainers are like that,” Kali’s trainer mused as they walked along. “So naive. And you—” Kali realized she was being addressed and narrowed her eyes “—you don’t like me, huh?” The human sounded amused. “That’s okay! We’ve got time.”

    The human slowed her pace suddenly and Kali almost tumbled into her. She was peering at the path up ahead with a frown. “Hm, I’d better check that out.”

    When Kali looked back up, the human had vanished. Kali swiveled her head around, searching, but there was no trace of the human anywhere. Kali hadn’t realized they could move so fast.

    Well, good riddance! Kali thought, but the grumble of her stomach reminded her that she was very hungry. Still, did she really need the human for that? If she just followed the road, surely she would come to another human place where they would feed her. Mind made up, Kali strutted forward.

    How nice, to walk alone, owning the road. A torchic in full control of her destinyyyyy—

    1
  4. APen says:

    Kali, Star Destroyer, and the Lily of Death (part 3)

    “T-chik-aaa!” The ground erupted under her and Kali was thrown into the air. She squirmed from side to side, trying to get free, but horrible plastic netting blocked her on all sides.

    “Hey, we’ve got a hit! Oh damn, it’s just a torchic.”

    “Hang on, torchic don’t come wild around here. And remember what the old prof said?  Bet you anything that’s the Lily’s pokemon.”

    “Hey, not a bad thought. But who cares if we got this little stinker—the boss wants us to get the Lily back, not her dinky starter.”

    “Use your head, Phil. If we have the pokemon, the Lily is sure to follow.”

    “What, for a little pipsqueak like this? She could grab a blaziken off the black market in no time.”

    “Yeah, yeah, but it’s principle right? The top-tier assassins are weird that way. Doesn’t matter how weak it is, long as it’s hers.”

    “Sounds crazy to me, but it’s worth a try, I guess.”

    When they hauled the net down, Kali was ready. She struck out with avenging fury, her steely peak tearing into their weak skin—

    “Ouch! Mouthy little thing. You got a shock collar handy, Phil?”

    “Must have one somewhere. Hang on.”

    A dark, foul-smelling strip of plastic clicked around Kali’s neck. When she tensed for another peck attack, a horrible bolt of pain raced through her body. She fell limp.

    “That’s the ticket. Now come on, let’s get back to the others. I feel exposed out here.”

    Misery, Kali thought hazily. Hah! She hadn’t known what misery was. This was misery, every pinion aching and her head a cloud of painful fog. The swing of the net made her stomach roll. She kept her beak clamped shut, fearing that at any moment she would retch up over herself.

    “Hey team, we made a catch!”

    “What, that little fire chick? That’s nothing. We found a trainer who actually spoke with her! Said that torchic’s really the only pokemon she’s got.”

    “Here now, if we’ve caught her only pokemon, where exactly is she?”

    A troubled silence fell.

    “You don’t think she’s been—”

    Something crashed through the window. Kali strained to see what was happening, but all at once the air was filled with thick smoke. Kali pressed her eyes shut against its acrid sting. Guttural cries of pain rose into the air around her.

    Then Kali was being swung off the table and out into the open. Kali gulped in the fresh spring air greedily. Strong, but gentle hands untangled her from the netting and clipped the collar from her throat. Kali flinched as cold spray hit her wings, making them sting, but the sting only lasted a moment, and almost instantly, the ache lifted. Kali opened her eyes slowly to find her human studying her.

    “How are you feeling?”

    Kali didn’t know what expression her face twisted into, but it must have made her feelings clear, because the human chuckled softly. “Okay, stupid question. You’re just a little thing, aren’t you?”

    When the electric-shock men had called Kali little, it had made her want to fight. But the strange note of sympathy in the human’s voice undid her.

    To her horror, Kali found her body beginning to tremble. When the human held out her arms, she pressed herself into them, comforted by the warmth and the firmness of the human’s grip.

    “I’m sorry,” the human said after a moment. “I could have grabbed you back right after they netted you of course, but I wanted to see how many goons Ma sent after me. These low level grunts are like rattata, you know, they’ve got a herding instinct. Best to smoke them out together. I didn’t think—you’ve never done anything like this before, have you?”

    Kali shook her head, still trembling.

    The human let out a sigh. “Right. I guess I didn’t think this through so well. Look, this is my life. Ma wants me back and I doubt these goons will be the last she sends after me. I thought a traditional pokemon journey would be the best way to start fresh, you know? But maybe I should just nick a couple of power fighters. Maybe that would be best. Listen, what do you say? I can drop you back off with that professor today. He’ll find you a place with a more normal trainer.”

    Kali opened her eyes, her mind whirring furiously.

    This human had saved her. She had saved her because she was strong and Kali was weak.

    Was she going to trot home with her head lowered, in defeat? Or was she going to become strong—strong enough to fight off every miserable electric-shock human?

    There was only one choice that was worthy of Kali, Star-Destroyer.

    The human set Kali down on the grass, next to her pokeball.

    “Stay by your ball if you want to go back home,” the human said. She didn’t give another option.

    Kali frowned. The human was that sure how she would choose? She stepped forward, away from the pokeball, until she was back at the human’s feet. She let out a loud, indignant squawk.

    “You still want to come with me?” Surprise was bright in the human’s voice. Kali nodded, fluffing up her fur. She worried, suddenly, that the human would reject her. Say that a little fire chick had no place at her side.

    “In that case, can I give you a bit of advice?”

    Kali looked up to find her human smiling.

    “Next time, aim for their eyes.”

    ~thus began the adventures of Kali, Star-Destroyer, and her human, the Lily of Death . . .

    1
    1. Actislazyandwontlogin says:
      I love this and request more
      1. A Wild Birb Appears says:

        I second the request for more, that was great (and oddly adorable)

        1. APen says:

          I obey the will of the people: https://www.fanfiction.net/s/13478109/1/

          Next chapter should be up within the week.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Skip to toolbar