This is my nuzlocke run of Fire red. I hope you enjoy my story and pls check out my devianrt art page, Omen11. Thanks and feel free to criticise. I wont get better if you don't. Day 1 Part 1 Spoiler "Are you sure about this Gary?" Zanas held his fists in a ball tightly as both boys gazed at the long patch of thigh high grass, both shaking a bit out of excitement and fear. "Hey I'll understand if you want to chicken out man," Gary teased. The warm summer breeze blowing at his gravity defying, spiky brown hair, his green and blue yin-yang necklace and even ruffling his purple t-shirt. "It's cool." Zanas snorted at his friend, as both boys exchanged a hard punch in the arm. "You wish I was much a panzy as you think I am." He wore a brown fedora along with a white T-shirt under a short black denim jacket and loose blue jeans and cheap but sturdy white tennis shoes. "There's no thinking necessary Zan. I just know." Zanas smirked as he adjusted his brown fedora over is forehead. "On three then." Gary and Zanas leaned forward, ready to burst into the grass on cue. Gary's sister sighed and shook her head as she leaned up against a tree, hiding in the cool shade. "This is stupid and you're going to get your mother and gramps mad beyond all heck." Gary broke his line of sight with the grass as he stared at his sister. "And who's going to tell them. You? Unless someone happens to nark on us, then we'll be fine. Besides you owe me after…" The two's bickering was suddenly silenced as a patch of grass shifted. Zanas's eyes went wide, seeing the brown tail feather of a Pidgey poking out. By instinct the boy leapt into action, running fast and hard, leaving Gary and his sister to cough at the dirt cloud he'd stirred up. Zanas had blocked all sound and thought, his eyes only focusing on the Pidgey which had now noticed him. He ran on all fours like an animal, running harder than he'd ever thought possible. He was going to catch it. He was going to catch that Pidgey. He jumped at the bird as it took flight, everything moving in a slow pace as his heart beat faster and faster. Zanas's fingers ran through the Pidgey's tail feathers pulling a handful off the bird Pokemon. Instantly reality knocked, and knocked hard, gravity seeming to tackle Zanas back to earth. Zanas landed on his shoulder, but rolled with the fall until the unmoving force of a tree stopped him. Everything happened so fast Zanas had to take a moment to register in what order. Slowly, he sat up grabbing at his right shoulder. Thank Arceus it wasn't broken, but it hurt like heck. The boy jumped to his feet, brushing the dirt and grass of his shirt and denim jacket, adjusting his fedora once more, but now leaning it back a bit to reveal his forehead and bangs. "Well, that could have…been far less embarrassing." As Zanas moved through the thick grass back home, he could hear more Pokémon behind him, watching him. The little buggers must have gotten curios about the boy who fell from the sky. It took all of Zanas's will power not to hide in the grass and wait for another one to walk by so he could catch it. He pushed through the grass, feeling itchy from the blades scraping across his skin, as he called out to Gary and his little sister. "Hey gu…crap." Standing there, with no sign of either Gary nor May, was Professor Oak, pissed beyond any kind of hell Arceus could bring. The only thoguht running through Zanas's mind was, 'I'm gonna die.' Day 1 Part 2 and 3 Spoiler "Professor this has to stop now!" Zanas's Mom was screaming so loudly over the phone Professor Oak had to keep the device at a distance when he wasn't in turn to speak. "This is the tenth time they've tried this. For Arceus sake they'll be dead before their eighteen." Oak sighed as he waited for the pause in her rant, meaning he was allowed to talk. "I know this is becoming more than just a nuisance. I'll talk to my boy first and then-" "Arceuse damnit that's not good enough!" The professor cried out from the ear bursting he had just received, but he kept himself calm. "I'm…I'm sorry professor…I'll calm down." Zanas's mother was an understanding young woman but she had the same problem as her son, a fiery temper and emotions that could shift faster than a Porygon. "Listen Lucile, I know you are against it but the sad fact is the boys are growing up. They're past the ten year old rank, almost in their adult years now. You have to let go…and these creatures may be Zanas only way of growing up." "No, it's not!" Lucile barked back. Her voice was cracking and getting higher in pitch. "He…he can be a normal citizen, work at the shop in Viridian, or if he has to work with animals he can go to school and work at one of the Pokémon centers." "Lucile…" "He doesn't have to go through what we all went through. It's not worth it!" "For Arceus sake Lucile, get a hold of yourself!" The woman remained dead silent on her end. Oak had never snapped at her before and now that he had, it was all the more certain she was in the wrong. "…I've been planning a gift for my grandson for years…he loves the creatures as much as anyone. Heh…is just like his father…" Oak took his time for a silent moment as well, pressing his face into the palm of his left hand. "I am more than willing to offer Zanas the same gift, but you have to let him know your behind him one hundred percent." Lucile was holding back her tears, hiccupping between pauses in her words. "But…I'm not…" "Then lie." Zanas was leaned back in his chair, his fedora covering his face as he pretended to sleep. This was bull crap. Not getting caught by Oak, that was inevitable. What was bugging Zanas was that his best friend ditched him. That brown spiky haired prick left him to rot on his own. Zanas knew Gary would be called to the lab soon enough, Oak never trusted either of the two when one was in trouble, but the idea of Gary being in the same trouble as Zanas didn't make him feel any better. Zanas heard footsteps rushing in his direction. He didn't need to see the girl to identify her. A more dead giveaway was the young girl's high pitch squeal when she saw the Pokémon in the lab. "O my goodness, they're so cute!" Gary's sister May, grabbed for the nearest pidgey, a brown back and white belly feathered bird Pokémon, but was swiftly denied her access to the test subjects, having been shooed away by one of the assistants. She pouted, swore to tell her grandfather, then sat down next to Zanas. If there was any repetitive moment about Zanas's life that he never grew tired of, it was that entire display. "May, you just made my day." Zanas chuckled. May, as usual, pouted and punched Zanas's shoulder. Zanas flinched grabbing his bad shoulder, wincing from the pain. May gasped slightly and apologized. "I'm sorry, I didn't know you were in that much pain. Is it broken? Do you need a hospital?! Where's the first aid?!" Zanas laughed at May's frantic state and patted her head. "It's ok, you don't punch that hard. You never have." May shared her brother's brown hair, though it was lighter and pulled back. She would always complain that if she didn't comb it out it would be spiky like her brother's. Her dress was light green, and since it was summer she wore her favorite sunflower flip-flops. The white bow headband in her hair kept the top of her hair from sticking out. May sat next to Zanas quietly. She wasn't pouting, and for once she didn't have any tears rolling down her cheeks. Zanas smiled, adjusting his hat to the back of his head. "You're way too frantic when it comes to people getting hurt." May shook her head and smiled, "Gramps says I'm just like my father, always thinking about everyone but me." "And what, Gary is a lot like your mother?" May nodded covering her mouth as she laughed, "As gramps says, she was 'too damn stubborn. Never wanted to show weakness.'" Zanas sat forward, now having his turn to tilt and ponder, "Show weakness?" "You probably think Gary left you when Gramps found you?" Zanas adjusted his hat foreword, covering his bangs and a bit of his eyes. "…ya" "When you rushed into the grass, we were first to be caught…and Gary swore he didn't know where you were." Day 1 Part 4 and 5 Spoiler Zanas leaned back in his seat, sighing out of boredom. He watched as the scientists scurried around more than their test subjects, silently rushing between tables and bookshelves, while Pidgeys and Ratatata's were propped up on tables and given food as they obediently sat still. Oak's assistants then attached little circular bandages to the Pokémon's bodies while they continued to snack on berries. Zanas followed one of the wires connected to the bandage, but lost the single strand when it entered into one of the machines that beeped and shook like a nervous creature. Zanas always thought that maybe there was nothing in the machine, rather it was just a big box that held wire in the shape of a boulder sized yarn ball. He smirked as he recalled May's Meowth always clawing and chewing on anything that looked like string. "UGH!" May yawned/grunted, "I'm bored!" She turned to Zanas, her eyes giving off her best puppy dog face.Zanas copied May's tone as they both spoke in a drawn out, whiny voice, "Let's do something Zanas." May pouted and "hmped" at Zanas, as he clutched his sides, laughing. He knew that drove her crazy, but the face she made when she was made was priceless. "O Arceus!" Zanas cried, gasping for air between pauses, "I wish I had a camera for moments like this." May punched his bad arm again, smiling impishly as Zanas winced in pain. "Dang girl, why you gotta hit so hard?" Before May could give reply with a smart mouthed remark, the lab doors pulled open automatically as both Gary and the professor entered the building, Zanas reverting to his sleeping pose. On cue the scientists halted what they were doing, and made a quick bow to Oak all saying, "Good morning professor" in a robotic manner. Both Gary and Oak shuddered, as it freaked them out when the assistants did that, but of course that was the point. The two walked over to where Zanas and May were sitting, Oak stopping for only a moment to whisper something in one of the assistant's ears. The man ran off somewhere out of the way of the other scientists. "Well I'm glad you decided to wait this time Zanas. You usually give me more trouble than this." Zanas didn't say anything; he just kept his head down and his fedora over his eyes, still trying to pretend to sleep. Gary kicked at Zanas's legs which were spread out away from the seat. The boy fell from his seat, flailing for the brief fall. "I hope you get attacked by a Pinsir." Gary offered his hand, smirking at Zanas, as the boy took hold and pulled himself up. "Now, you both know why you are here?" Oak began. Both boys nodded. "Then tell me what you think is a suitable punishment for almost getting yourselves killed." The professor began pacing around the two, Zanas expecting the usual rant. "You both could have gotten hurt. You know the dangers of going into the tall grass without a Pokémon," but there seemed to be little to no force behind his words. "But more importantly," Gary and Zanas smirked as they sang along with the professor, "Zanas's mother would have killed me, no Pokémon necessary." May began to giggle until Oak slammed his hand on the table in front of them, scaring the smiles off all three children's faces and making one of the assistants, carrying a pidgey, jump. While the scientist was distracted, the pidgey broke free and attempted to escape, the assitant lunging after it. The pidgey had flown just out of the man's reach causing him to grasp at empty space and knock over one of the machines hooked up to a Ratatata and pull the purple furred rat down with it. Soon enough all the Pokemon were screeching and running about in chaos. An assistant ran to Oak, handing him a over-sized silver brief case before rushing into the confusion, leaving the professor and the children to gaze upon the insanity that had ensued within a matter of seconds. After the Pokemon had been caught and ordered was restored, Oak served tea to his two grandchildren, offering Zanas a cup, but the boy declined and leaned back comfortably in his chair. "So,you two realize that Zanas's mother and I are growing tired of this constant endangerment of your lives." As Oak spoke, he kept his eyes only on Zanas. It was obvious that his mother was called before this sit down, and this was the first in a long line of talks planned for him. Zanas rolled his eyes for a moment, looking toward Gary and May. May was off squealing about a Ratatata, while Gary seemed oddly disturbed. He looked into his cup as if fascinated by the liquid. His hands were clutching the thing so tightly Zanas thought it would break in his hand. Was he that scared of getting in trouble? "Zanas pay attention, you too Gary, this is important." Both boys picked their heads up to look at the old timer. "Now, I have had a long talk with Lucile, and after hours upon hours of discussion I have come to an agreement with her." An agreement?, Zanas thought. Was this one run through the grass so different from the others that they had to talk about a special kind of punishment? Gary walked from the seat on the far wall, and sat next to Zanas, setting the tea in front of his Grandfather's suitcase. "So what IS our punishment?" Gary questioned. The professor, merely smiled, as he leaned back in his chair like one of the old bond villains, letting his hands come together and his fingers drum against each other. "It's a simple solution really. You won't live under our rules and you're both persistent on leaving. So we are kicking you out." "W-What do you mean they're kicked out?!" May cried, he voice panicky and frustrated. May was the first of the trio to give any reaction after the awkward silence that had fallen over the lab. The boys seemed paralyzed, their eyes grown wide as if they had both seen one of the legendaries burst through the wall. Even the assistants stood frozen in place. Oak continued to sit back in his chair and drum his fingers, his small grin growing into an outright smile as he watched the children's reactions. He sat quietly and just stared, mentally guessing who would break first, Gary or Zanas? Maybe even May would jump in again. 'Oh Arceus, I am enjoying the suspense,' the professor thought. The moment that thought crossed the professor's mind, Zanas broke free from his frozen state and began laughing, gripping his stomach with one hand while holding his fedora on his head with the other. "You got me. That was….that was pretty good, old man." Everyone remained silent and the boy's laughter was the only sound filling the room besides occasional beeping of machines or the coos and sniffing of the Pokémon. Just as quickly as it came, the laughter stopped. Zanas coughed nervously from the almost suffocating tension. Gary's laughter soon replaced Zanas'. "So what you're saying is you pulled some strings, called in a few favors and got us part time jobs at a Pokémon center right?" Oak's smile grew even more, as he chuckled, his eyes crinkled from the hilarity he was finding in all this. "Guess again," he giggled, which sounded awkward coming from an old man, as he turned and opened the briefcase, revealing to everyone three poke balls. Zanas and Gary jumped from their seats, their eyes still wide but their frowns wiped clean away. Both wore large grins on their faces which soon shifted into looks of disbelief. Oak laughed at the sudden change in their attitudes. "This isn't a trick boys. Those are real poke balls and they hold three of the rarest starter Pokémon in the world." The professor grinned ear to ear at his grandson, "You weren't too far off when you said I called in a few favors, but it wasn't for the same reasons as you thought, hmm?" His grin shrank into a more sincere smile, his eyes filled with pride. The professor pushed the case closer to the boy's and as he continued to look to his grandson. "Gary, you've always loved Pokémon, just as much as your father or myself. I've had this planned for you just as I did for him. I wish things had been different and that it was your father giving you one of these magnificent creatures instead, but," Oak paused, his hands shaking as he briefly thought back to his only son. His eyes became filled with tears as he looked back to Gary. "By Arceus you look so much like him." The professor's voice began to crack as he spoke, and Gary was standing with his back straight and shaking in place, looking like a Sudowoodo being tickled. Oak coughed and recovered is his voice," But… I am more than happy to be reliving a moment such as this." Gary's eyes, now leaking with tears, clenched shut and nodded as he tried his best to keep a strong face. Oak broke eye contact and walked over to Zanas, whipping the tears from his eyes before placing a hand on the boy's shoulder. "And don't worry dear boy, I already talked to your mother and she agreed upon this decision. This gift was originally for Gary but after everything that has happened to your family I've decided that you deserve this chance." Zanas smiled, trying to fight back tears of his own and failing miserably as long pools of tears ran down his face."Despite your parent's past…despite your father's short-comings, you deserve a chance to live out a life of adventure. And I'm sure your mother is proud of you, she's just is too proud to show it." Oak patted Zanas' shoulder as he walked back to the table, leaning over the opened briefcase pointing to each individual poke ball. "The one here, on the far left, holds the water type Pokémon Squirtle. This middle one holds the grass type Bulbasour and this third to the right holds the fire type Charmander. Both of you pick one starter Pokémon. This will be your very first ally on your journey…and possibly your closest friend." "Thanks gramps" Gary sniffed, whipping the tears from his eyes, coughing to recover his tone. Zanas's tears continued to roll down his cheeks as he clenched his fists and pumped triumphantly in the air shouting, "Finally!" This cry of victory was instantly shushed by the other scientists, warning the two that anything could set these Pokémon off, but as a show of congratulations they all gave finger claps in the two's direction. "Well then," Oak continued, "Why don't one of you choose your new partner?" As Oak spoke, he turned to his grandson, motioning him to take first pick. Gary nodded and reached out for one of the three poke balls, only to share a look of bewilderment with his grandfather over the now two remaining devices. Both Gary and the professor looked under the table and around their feet, thinking the ball might have fallen when no one was looking. Then, a flash of light and the ever familiar popping noise of an opening poke ball filled their ears. They turned around, mirroring each other's astonished looks, as Zanas had the poke ball in his hand and a new young Charmander at his feet. "Zanas what the hell?!" Both Oak's questioned. "What? You said we could take one and you guys looked like you were having a moment. I thought it would be rude to interrupt." "No!" Gary argued, "It was rude to greedily take the first Pokémon when you were told to wait your turn!" Zanas grit his teeth as he raised his voice to match Gary's volume "All I heard was, boys take a Pokémon, not, 'Gary be a baby and whine when your best friend is smart enough to take a hint and grab a damn Poke ball!' Besides you don't even like Charmander's and even then I didn't hear 'Gary you get first dibs either!'" "It doesn't matter, you should have waited. It was obvious Gramps wanted me to have first pick!" The boys continued to yell and grit their teeth, as Oak sighed but laughed. He noticed the young orange lizard watching the two go back and forth, chuckling and waging it's fire tipped tale as he watched, what the professor could only assume the little guy thought to be, two really loud Mankys. "This…" May sniffed, "This is Tauros shit." Oak and the boys looked in shocked at the young girl as she stormed out of the lab, her fists clenched. May, Oak thought, I figured you'd handle this more maturely. "Is she going to be alright?" Zanas asked to no one in particular "I don't know." Gary answered. "I've never seen her that mad...did she say Tauros shit?" "Don't worry boys." Oak put one hand on each child's shoulder. "I'll talk to her later. Until then, Gary." Oak turned Gary back around toward the briefcase, the boy instantly running to the far left poke ball and chucked it hard as he called out his new Squirtle. The blue skinned, swirly tailed, turtle leapt from the poke ball, running in circles like a child pretending to be an airplane. "Well someone sure wanted out of his cage." Gary laughed. Both boys took a moment to talk to their partners, the Squirtle being far more responsive than Zanas's Charmander. To be fair, Oak thought, the poor thing is still in its infant stage and had barely opened its eyes more than a few times. Oak walked over to the fedora wearing boy and knelt down. "Is something wrong?" The Charmander answered the professor before Zanas could, with a long and wide yawn, showing off the few fangs the little lizard had. Oak smiled and almost fell over when he heard an "Awww" out of Zanas. The boy quickly coughed, in an attempt to recover his manly persona. "I mean...um… he looks tired." "Well you better wake him up." Gary demanded, standing over his friend while his Squirtle stood at his side. "Unless you'd rather wait for the ass kicking that's been coming your way." Zanas smirked as he bundled his Charmander in his arms, adjusting his fedora over his bangs. "Jerochi man, we just got our Pokémon and you want me to knock out yours already?" Zanas said mockingly." Oak watched as Gary punched his friends arm, receiving a quick punch himself. "For once let the animals do the talking rather than your fat mouth!" "Oh is Duke gonna have to choke a turtle!?" "Duke?" both oak's questioned. Suddenly both boy's felt their body's being lifted from the ground and being carried away by all the assistants mash pit style screaming, "For Arceus sake take it out side will ya!" Oak held his stomach as he bellowed out his laughter, never thinking he would need his own assistants to kick the boys out of the building. Damnit that's the only fun I have when they get in trouble. Day 1 Part 6 Spoiler Zanas and Gary hit the ground with a "oomph", slightly confused on what had just happened. The assistants grumbled and talked amongst themselves as they walked back inside. Zanas could hear parts of what they were saying, none of it flattering. He had half a mind to call back to them and start a fight, but he knew he was in the wrong. Gary laughed as he got to his feet, patting himself free of dirt, his Squirtle copying his motions. "Well that's one way to be escorted." "Yay no joke…bunch of jerks." Zanas felt duke jump out of his arms, shaking itself awake. The Charmander sat back, looking up to its new trainer, curios to see a human child. "This is so cool," Zanas rejoiced quietly, petting his partner's head. The Pokémon nuzzled into the hand, purring joyfully, enjoying the free praise. Zanas chuckled at the adorable lizard. "Are you a dragon or a Meowth?" "He better be a fighter, or this is going to be the fastest win to date." Gary was egging Zanas on, growing slightly impatient after being thrown on his ass. Zanas laughed and stood up, Duke looking surprised when the hand left its head. "O you have no idea how badly you're going to regret those words. Duke is going to wipe the floor with your Squirtle, right buddy?" Zanas looked down to his partner who was rubbing against his leg, begging to be pet more. "This is not time to act cute!" Duke sighed out of annoyance and walked toward the front of his trainer. "Now just hold on a second," The professor called out, pulling a lawn chair with him. "Give me a minute to get comfy. I'm not as young as I used to be and this chair is a little heavy." The boys groaned as they waited for the old man, who shot them a look. "You youth have no respect for the elderly anymore. Back in my day…" and so the professor's monologue about his days as a trainer began. He started going on and on about, "How I made women swoon and challengers cower before my mighty battle tactics." "Does he always go on like this?" Zanas laughed and the comment and turned to his friend. "Shouldn't I be asking you that?" Gary looked to Zanas confused. "Asking me what?" "You just said…" "Are you two even listening?" Oak was answered with a unified, "No!" Zanas blinked and took a double take around the group, hearing more than his and Gary's voices answering the professor.. What was that? Before long the two oaks were arguing with one another, this meaning the Pokémon battle would be postponed for some time. Zanas watched the two argue but slowly turned his gaze away from the human combatants and shifted toward the blue turtle. He found it funny that Gary's Squirtle was sitting on his partners head, arguing with him. It was hard to understand anyone talking, so it sometimes sounded as if the Pokémon was yelling insults. Then Zanas got to thinking. Had he heard more than his and Gary's voices before? …Could it… Zanas laughed and looked down at his partner Duke, wondering if maybe he had said anything earlier. Zanas shook this thought of his mind. It was more likely he had voices in his head rather than hearing a Pokémon talk. Of course that may be cause for concern if the first one is the issue. "Hey…I'm getting hungry. Are we fighting or not?" Zanas's eyes went wide as he watched where the voice came from, even seeing the lips move. Duke was talking. He just spoke. Zanas's mouth dropped as sounds of astonishment and broken words escaped his lips while Duke eyed his partner's reaction. "Hey…are you ok?" "You…talk?" "Well ya." The young Charmander said as a matter of factly. His voice sounded that of the same pitch and tone of a teenager just slightly younger than Zanas. "But you probably can't understand me." "There's no way…I just heard an actual sentence out of you." Zanas was shaking. Had he gone insane? Was the shock of today's events too great for his mind to handle? Duke's eyes went as wide as Zanas's. "You can hear me?!" "What are you going on about?" Gary called to Zanas before he could answer his partner. All eyes now on the fedora wearing boy and his fire lizard. "I heard…..Duke just…" "Come on out with it man!" Gary's Squirtle demanded. Zanas began yelling nonsensical gibberish as he fell back and crawled back in fear. "Professor did you give us Pokemon from Groudon's realm?!" Oak looked at Zanas, confusion written all over his face "Zanas have you gone insane?" Gary questioned. Zanas looked at both Oak's, this new realization sweeping over his face as Duke ran up and pounced on his chest. "You can really understand what I'm saying?!" Zanas gave a nervous grin to his Pokémon and nodded. Duke smiled widely, showing off his few teeth once more as he jumped. "This is so cool, I get a trainer for a friend and he can actually answer all my questions. We can play games, and sing songs and wrestle…." Duke continued to bounce and think of ways to play as Zanas looked up to the sky, his mind repeating the same words over and over in his mind. I can talk to Pokémon….I….can talk…to Pokémon… Zanas shot up without warning, making Duke roll onto the ground. The boy's weak grin had grown into a triumphant smile now as he picked up his partner, throwing him in the air cheering. "I can talk to Pokémon!" Duke screamed and begged his partner to put him down, but Zanas was louder and couldn't hear his partner's pleas. Soon Duke yelled loud enough for Zanas to hear and the trainer stopped chucking the little fire breather up so high. The Charmander looked annoyed with the boy, who smiled apologetically and pat his new friends head. "Sorry…" "Just…please put me down." The trainer complied and set the Charmander down, both being looked at with different expressions of confusion and astonishment by the two oak's and the water Pokémon. "Have you lost your mind?" Gary asked nonchalantly. Zanas turned to the professor and his grandson, the young friend giving him an impatient glare, while Oak's look seemed almost astonished. "I think so, but after today's events can you blame me?" Gary rolled his eyes smiling. "You seem pretty excited though. 'I can talk to Pokémon!'" Gary teased his friend. "I'm telling you I." "Zanas," Gary interrupted. "We all can 'talk' to Pokémon. How else would they understand our commands?" A snide grin stretched across Gary's face. "For example" Gary looked up to his Squirtle, the swirly tailed creature nodding as if understanding Gary just by his glance. "Now hold on." The professor began, but was cut off as Gary's Squirtle leapt from his head and rushed into battle, his trainer following behind him. "Gary I said wait!" Gary ignored his grandfather to eager for the fight. Zanas and Duke charged as well, though hesitant. Zanas was defiantly up for a fight, but Gary seemed completely unconcerned that his friend may be going insane. He just wanted to fight him. But He couldn't worry about that now, they could discuss the whole talking subject later after all. Both trainers slid to a stop as they diminished the distance between each other since Zanas's mini freak out. Gary ordered Squirtle to use tackle, Zanas calling on Duke to counter with ember, knowing it wouldn't affect the water type much. Duke gave a look of confusion to Zanas. "I know it won't be strong….I just want to see you spit fire." Zanas admitted. Duke glowered at him, "I don't know that move." The Squirtles Tackle made contact with Duke, sending him at Zanas's feet. "Duke! Crap well what moves do you know?!" "Wow you must have hit your head something fierce when you fell. Not only have you gone insane but you don't even know your own partner's attacks." Gary ordered his Squritle to attack again, Duke shaking in fear as Zanas watched his friend continue to be kicked around. Zanas grit his teeth, thinking of what moves his partner may know. "Tail whip? Metal Claw? Growl?!" Charmander acted as if hearing a magic phrase, growling and brining Suqirtles tackle to a slight nudge rather than a full assault. "Squirtle Tail whip," Gary called, the turtle obeying instantly, brining Charmander's defense low. Ok, Zanas thought. If he knows growl…then he may know… "Charmander use scratch!" Duke gave a triumphant "Ya!" as he gave Squirtle an upper cut scratch attack, sending the poor turtle straight to his trainer. The professor stepped in just before Gary got back to his feet after being knocked down by Squirtle. "That's what we call a critical my boys. Squrtle is down and out…unless you want to push him harder Gary?" Gary grunted and shook his head, patting his partners shell as if to tell him good job. Zanas looked at his defeated friend, not wanting to gloat. Gary smiled and waved him off saying, "Well? No victory dance?" Zanas smiled, Duke surprising him as he jumped and crawled on his partners head screaming. "We won, we actually won!" Zanas gently bopped his Charmander, smiling at his young friend. "Come on was their ever any doubt?" Duke playfully bit his trainers handle, teething as he talked, "Welsh…it sheemed howess at firsht." Zanas franticly waved his hand trying to shake Duke off as what few teeth the Charmander had were digging into his skin. Gary walked over to the other end of the field, patting his friends shoulder. "Here I thought this was going to be a one sided fight." Zanas smirked. "Well I prefer to let these things play out a bit before I finish my opponent. I Didn't want to humiliate too badly." Gary punched his friends arm, "Just you wait Zanas. My Squirtle will be even stronger next time. And well mop the floor with you." "You better due better or this will be too easy." Zanas said, putting Charmander over his head, as he shook his friend's hand. Gary shook his hand but as Zanas tried to pull away Gary's grip grew tighter. "After today, no holding back. No regrets" Zanas looked at his friend, Gary's expression showing he was dead serious. Then just as swiftly as he had changed, Gary released his grip and reverted back to his cheerful nature. "Gramps," Gary called, "I'm heading home, gotta let Squirt take a rest and go calm down May." The professor nodded, still sitting in the leaned chair since the fight had started. "You want to come with?" Gary asked, only because he didn't want to put up with May's crying alone. "Oh no," Zanas laughed, "This is your problem not mine. I don't meddle with family affairs that aren't my own." With that The young Oak rushed off to go comfort his sister. Zanas watched his friend begin to leave. The boy's words sending a chill down his spine. No regrets? What does he… "Gary!" Zanas called, his friend waving back but continuing on. "Don't be boasting about that talent you think you have," He called back. "You'll either get pulled over by the police or worse," Gary paused and looked back. "Someone may try to take advantage of you." Gary turned back around, continuing in a calm pace, then shifted gears and bolted home. Duke titled his head in confusion. "What does he mean by that boss?" Zanas remained silent, his face frozen in place. "He talks as if…he already knows." "Zanas," The professor called the trainer and partner as the two turned to their old friend. "We need to talk." Again Duke titled his head in confusion and looked to his new friend for answers. Zanas only stared at Oak, wondering why it was everyone seemed to know about his talent before even he did and yet there was something more. What does everyone know that I don't? Day 2 Part 1 Spoiler Duke rolled to the side, just barely avoiding the wild Ratatata's attack, causing the purple rat to tackle a large oak instead. "Now!" Zanas called, "Ember, don't hold back!" They boys partner obliged and sent a particularly large rain of fire pellets at the creature. The rat yelped out in pain but quickly fainted, two others of its kind rushing to their brother or simply friend's side, carrying him toward the water so the group could lick their wounds. . The five, now only three Ratatatas came right out of nowhere and charged at the trainer and his partner the moment Zanas had thrown his first Pokeball, scaring duke into going slightly overboard on the leader of the group. Why were they so angry? Zanas thought. The newly caught female was snugly kept inside one of the five Pokeballs the professor had given Zanas after delivering a special kind of Pokeball from the mart. It slightly irritated the boy since he had to back track to his home after just spending three hours going through an awkward and heart breaking goodbye from his mother and his best friends Gary and May, but it had to be done. On the plus side he now had a second Pokémon to train and help on his long journey. But now he was in route 22 territory and could run between the center and the market in vermilion if need be. Duke began sniffing the Pokeball then looked up to Zanas with puppy like eyes and a big smile "Can she come out now and play?" Zanas smiled and patted his partner, "not yet, we have to head to the center first, both you and Sasha need a break after today. Duke smiled and puffed his chest out proudly. "I don't need rest. I feel super energetic!" Instantly the lizards stomach gurgled a louder growl than the little fire starter had ever tried to muster. Zanas laughed at the dragon's embarrassment, being met with the usual biting and hanging of the human's finger. After some well disserved dinner and rest, Zanas released the newly named Sasha, who seemed rather happy with her new surroundings. "…Impressive…could use a touch less dense shade of red." Zanas eyed the outside frame of the center and tilted his head, Duke mimicking the boy's actions. "You may be on to something. Well maybe we can bring that up with the nurse next time we need to rest." Sasha's eyes went wide for a brief second, a snide grin growing across her face. "Well I'll be a Mankey's uncle, a human who can understand me, and I am not talking about my impeccable taste in design." "Ya…it seems I have a talent for that." "Well it will certainly help me benefit you team more appropriately. I can offer much to this…developing team." "You seem to think highly of yourself." "Well why shouldn't I? After all I was undefeated for three years in that small patch that you found me in. I even fought off a handful of Beedrill while I was still in my younger years." Zanas laughed, causing Sasha to scowl. "Is there something amusing to you?" "Nothing, I just agree with yourself proclaimed status is all. If you're as good as you say it's no wonder those other Ratatatas were so ready to fight. You must have been popular. Sasha made an "hmph" noise at the mention of the others. "Not even. I had outsmarted and out fought them all countless times. They just wanted to prove themselves by fighting off the very creature that beat me." Sasha glared at Duke, who was still staring up at the Poke Center, deep in thought. "O…I see. Well I hope you won't hold my friend in contempt for it." Sasha smirked and sat up straight, scratching her head with her paw. "On the contrary, I am pleased it was a trainer's Pokémon who defeated me. After all it was only a matter of time and now that I myself am your ally I could benefit greatly traveling with you, but not as much as you gain from me." Zanas raised his brow at the last comment but kept his smile going. "I'll take that as a compliment. Glad to have someone of your…enthusiasm on the team Sasha." The purple female smiled and proudly stood up on all fours. Well someone likes their new name. Zanas turned to Duke, who was still looking at the Poke Center. "Duke…you ok buddy?" Duke turned and nodded, walking back to the other two. "What were you so entranced by?" Sasha questioned "I was just thinking…the center needs more red." The night after Gary and Zanas's first Pokémon battle, the professor pulled Zanas aside, asking him questions about his health. "Have you been feeling alright, any headaches or heat flashes?" he said while shining a light in the boy's eye. Zanas side, "No professor and if you ask me on more question out of the thirty others I might just sick Duke on you and make a run for it." Duke obediently picked his head up from his partners lap, but rested back down after realizing it was nothing but a hollow threat. "Well you're certainly suffering from a case of grouchiness." The professor remarked. He sat down across the room, letting Zanas continue to sit on one of the unused tables that originally held a Pidgey. "You are not gonna put all those patches and wires on me now are you?" Zanas asked, growing more curios and annoyed with not being told what the old man was up to. The professor chuckled, "Well since I've seen this before, I don't think that will be necessary but it might be worth a shot." Both Duke and Zanas groaned, as both were hungry and tired and wanted to end the exciting but emotionally straining day. The professor sighed and turned to face the two, leaning forward and twiddling his thumbs like he usually did when he was about to lecture someone. "Zanas…how much did your mother tell you about your father?" Zanas's eyes went wide. What did any of this have to do with his father? As if the old man had read his mind, he quickly answered the boy's internal question. "When your mother and father first moved here they were both gifted trainers, very energetic and managed to play off of each other's strengths and weaknesses. Your mother's talents were being able to keep calm in battle and always find the faults in any strategy or attack, including her own. But your father..." The old man stopped, and sighed, clutching his hands tightly together and smiling at memories past. "Your father could literally speak and communicate with any and all Pokémon. And it seems this talent is hereditary. "Wow…so can we eat now?" Duke questioned. Zanas held back his astonishment, noting the professor's hand gestures. Something told him that this was no time to celebrate. "Your speechless I see…but not because of this gift…" The professor sighed and adjusted his seating, then continued his bad habit with his hands. "I'm telling you all this, Zanas…because your mother has been dreading this day for years and I believe that it's time you understand that why. Duke shivered feeling the tension between the two. Zanas's eyes grew wider as he listened, clutching his hand into a fist. She knew? She knew this was going to happen? Why would she hide this?! "I'll tell you why." Oak continued playing his mind game again, though it was easy to read what was on the boy's mind. "Because she blames this talent for your father's disappearance." The hours had passed and now both Sasha and Duke were well on their way to growing in experience. They had just passed route 22 again and went through vermilion to check out route 2. The three had sat down for some rest and relaxation as Zanas took a nap. Even after the revisit home he hadn't gotten much sleep. Now most of those memories were haunting him in his dreams. Sasha was still feeling pumped after her seventh consecutive win against a wild Pokémon, and was mock battling with Duke. Sasha proved to be faster than her dragon opponent but what Duke lacked in speed he flourished in strength and inner power. Sasha and duke collided for the umpteenth time, both using tackle and sending the other flying back a few feet. Sasha kept to her feet, but Duke stumbled. "Getting tired smokey?" "You wish." Duke replied, his eyes showing a fighting flare within them Zanas had woken from his nap, and sat foreword, rubbing his eyes. Duke saw his friend waking up and gleefully ran toward his trainer, inadvertently dodging Sasha's quick attack and slamming herself into a tree. "Zanas is awake!" Duke jumped and crawled onto the boy's head, wiggling into the indentation in the boy's fedora. "How did you sleep?" Zanas groaned and stood up as he cracked his back. "Not well. Even when I dream I do too much thinking." Sasha walked aggravated toward the two. "Just when things were getting interesting..." "What did I miss?" Duke leaned over and began talking nonstop about how the two were training and how Sasha's speed is amazing. The proud rat puffed out her chest and stood for praise. "But I was way cooler. I shot fire at her feet and made her stumble back, then I smacked her with my tail and…" "That was a cheap shot and you know it!" Sash snapped. "And I would have beaten you just now if you hadn't run to Zanas like the suck up you are." Duke's eyes shifted into an animalistic glare. "You wanna get burned rodent?" he asked but with a challenging tone. The purple rodent growled and grinned, crouching down for a quick attack before Zanas picked both up by their tales, making both scream. "Ok you two play nice. There's no need to get so hasty." Both Pokémon groaned and stopped struggling. Once Zanas put the two down Duke returned to his cheerful domineer, but Zanas always caught the two glaring at each other. Arceus help me. First bad memories in my sleep now this. Once again Zanas caught the two giving the other a nasty look. "Damnit you two I said." "O Arceus no!" The three stood still and looked forward along their new route. "That is not what I said." Zanas stated, as the three bolted at top speed to see who or what had cried out. Day 2 Part 2 Spoiler The three rushed from the gates of Viridian city toward the tall grass patch in route 2, watching a trail of rustling grass move farther and farther into the patch. Duke and Sasha had an extreme lead over Zanas, Sasha with her unmatched speed and Duke who had grown quite a bit in the past few days. The boy tried to keep up, but his partners were just too quick. All Zanas could do was desperately chase after the three lines of parting grass as Duke and Sasha chased after whatever was screaming. It sounded like a person terrified of something. Maybe they were being attacked by a Pokémon? Suddenly the three lines met one another in the middle of the patch. Zanas could hear Duke call out to whatever was screaming, but before he got close enough to see what exactly was happening, the voice shrieked again tossing both Duke and Sasha from the grass at the boy, knocking him on his back and crashing his head to the ground. The shrieking continued but became more distant as "it" rushed deeper into the grass. As Zanas sat up both Pokémon jumped off and asked if their trainer was alright. "Sorry," Duke said with a quiet tone. "What did you guys see?" Zanas grunted, holding the back of his head. "A talking box." The flame lizard answered nonchalantly "A what?!" Sasha sighed and rolled her eyes from the Charmander misunderstanding. "It wasn't a 'talking box' you smoke head. It was a Pokémon trapped in a box." Duke growled at Sasha for both insults, but was held back by Zanas via its tail. "What kind of box?" "I'm not sure. It had a blue label around it with a red PokeBall symbol around it." "It smelled delicious." Duke commented, sniffing the air for more signs of the mysterious box. "It might be a PokeMart box that was filled with some food." Zanas pondered. Sasha seemed to agree, as she thought out loud from where Zanas had ended. "It was likely eating whatever food was in there and literally stuck its nose too deep in the box." Zanas stood to his feet and lead the two out of the grass as they looked in all directions for the box. "Any ideas where it might have…" "This way!" Duke exclaimed, rushing ahead. "Duke wait!" Zanas called out, jumping into a sprint after his original partner. Sasha groaned, mumbling something about more running until she caught up with the two, Zanas again beginning to lag behind. "How in world do you know where the box is?" Sasha asked between breaths. Duke looked back and smiled, drool dripping from the creature's mouth "I can smell it!" Sure enough Duke had led them straight toward the box, screams of terror still being heard from within the cardboard cube. Whatever was inside heard the three coming and was spooked into running away. Damnit, Zanas though. Not again. At the rate he was going he'd never keep up with them. Come on Zanas move, he thought to himself. Think like before when you were chasing…that… The box was now floating unsteadily into the air, the brown and white wings of the trapped Pidgey had managed to slip through the box, but the thing was so startled it hadn't thought to throw the box ff its face yet. Everything seemed to slow down as Zanas watched the tail feathers of the bird fly higher and higher away. Within the blink of an eye, the boy was on all fours like before, running faster than a Rapidash, his eyes dilated to look like those of a beast. Duke and Sasha had given up on chasing the now in flight box Pokémon and were soon passed and almost knocked back by their trainer. Zanas didn't flinch, didn't even hesitate to think of his next move. He ran toward the nearest tree, still running with both hands and feet up the twenty foot oak, leaping down at the boxed Pidgey who just at that second managed to throw the box off its head, screaming as it was tackled and rolled to the ground with the animal boy. Zanas and the wild Pidgey rolled off in opposite directions but Zanas recovered instantaneously and charged on all fours again in the bird's direction. The Pidgey shook its head in confusion, looking wide eyed and fearful as it saw the charging trainer. "Get away from me!" The bird squawked and jumped at the boy with hard speed as Zanas leapt foreword as well. The two collided into one another, their heads making a clunking sound, at least to them. Soon the world grew dizzy and dark as both Duke and Sasha ran over to their trainer's side, their voices growing dimmer. Even through all the creaming and shaking only one word remained in Zanas's head before the darkness took him for a nap. Ouch! Zanas woke with a groan later that day. The once bright warm day had turned into a dark and chilly night. Zanas sat up and saw both Duke and Sasha lying with him, Duke resting on his chest and Sasha just to his right, both curled up asleep. He shook the two awake and debriefed them on what happened after they had blacked out. Duke attempted to speak but instead yawned, leaving Sasha to explain everything. "You ran like…well like me and butted heads with that Pidgey. Poor thing hasn't woken up since your collision." Zanas snorted, "Thanks I'm fine, no internal bleeding or brain damage." Sasha grinned at his comment. "Well I wouldn't be too sure about the later one." Zanas let Duke roll off of his chest, who then when right back to sleeping, then casually walked over to the passed out Pokémon he had skull bashed earlier. He gently shook the bird, which slowly opened its eyes and looked around. It already looked scared, ready to fly off quickly. "Hey now, just come down buddy. No one's going to hurt you." "Well not intentionally." Sasha snickered. The Pidgey ruffled its feathers, taking a proud stance, only it looked silly as the bird was shaking like a twig. "It's ok." Zanas laughed. "She's kidding. Look." Zanas grabbed the PokeMart box and presented it to the Pidgey who looked even more terrified, that is until Zanas ripped it in three pieces. The cardboard was weakened from the chase before and was easy to tear. The bird managed a smile and seemed to calm down a bit as it sat down. "So," Zanas continued, taking a seat next to the Pokémon. "That was quiet a tackle you gave me earlier." This seemed to upset the Pidgey as it began waving its arms in apology, "I'm sorry. I didn't….I mean I didn't realize…" "Calm down, it's alright. You're a twitchy little guy rant you." The Pidgey sighed and sat back down, attempting to relax but instead looked even more tense an awkward. "I have a very…jumpy personality. If something scares me I attack it and run. It's worked out for me so far." "I can see that. Few of anyone could knock me out like that." Sasha had walked over by this point and was about to comment on what Zanas had said till he dropped his leg on her neck and kept her there. "Listen. Your obviously too scared to be out here on your own, and I could use someone with your strength. Maybe you'd." The Pidgey tackled Zanas again but this time in joy. "Could go with you guys and we could be friend and I wouldn't have to stay in this creepy forest anymore?! Tank you thank you thank you!" Sasha squirmed out of Zanas's legs and growled, watching the male Pidgey practically cry on the boy's chest. "Great, now we have a spaze on the team." Zanas grabbed one of his empty Poke Balls and taped the Pidgey's head, watching as the light dimed in the center of the device. Zanas quickly released the bird smiling, as his PokeDex ran through the stats and information of the creature which Zanas read aloud. "Pidgey, the tiny Pokémon. Does not like to fight. It hides in Tall grass and so on, foraging for food such as small bugs." Zanas typed in and registered the newly "caught" bird with its name and sent it to the league database. "Welcome to the team Runt." Zanas said, patting the bird on its head. The bird cooed and rubbed its head into the boy's hand, happy to know it wasn't alone anymore. Duke yawned and it's his stomach growled behind the bird, causing it to scream and tackle Sasha. "Can we eat yet…why is the new guy wrestling with Sasha? Can I join?!" Sasha threw the bird off of herself and tried to tell duke they weren't wrestling, but Duke had already leapt at the two, ready to play. Day 3 Part 1 Spoiler "Ok guys, it's time to get serious." Zanas said with an enthusiastic tone, as the group walked out of the Pokémon Center. "Ya were taking care of business!" Duke cheered, pumping his fist in the air. Zanas laughed and joined with him as the rejoiced, "Today is the day!" Runt flew over and sat next to Sasha who was napping under a tree near the two howling duo. "Um…what are they talking about?" "Who knows with those two?" Sasha yawned as she curled into a tighter ball and groaned. "Why did we have to get up so early?" "Because today is the day!" Duke and Zanas seemed to pop straight from nowhere startling both Sasha and Runt, sending the Pidgey into another frantic frenzy. "What the does that even mean?!" Sasha squeaked back. "Well it's obvious." Duke replied, sliding foreword on Zanas's fedora. "IT means…today….is …THE day!" Sasha groaned as Runt continued to run around like his head was cut off. "Zanas…will you please?" Zanas chuckled as he sat Duke down next to his purple friend, and grabbed Runt by his foot, resting him on his shoulder. "It means today is grinding day." As Zanas spoke he pet Runt, who joyfully cooed and pressed his head into the praising hand. "Grind? Like meat?!" Duke's eyes grew wide as drool dribbled from his mouth. Sasha lowered her head annoyed, but Zanas saw just a hint of a grin pass over her mouth as she did. "No idiot, he means we have to train." Instantly Sasha's ears perked up. "You mean a training session, like an all day thing." Zanas nodded and set Runt down next to the other two, looking lost as over what was going on. Sasha's smile grew wider and wider behind her impressive teeth. "O this I can condone fully." Duke sighed. "I wasn't really hungry anyway." To no surprise Duke and Sasha had an easy time rifling through the Rattata's and Pidgey's in route's one and two, while Runt needed a little more push. The bird Shared blow after blow of tackles and sand attacks, more than the other two had suffered, as he desperately tried to catch up. The last battle Runt was in was a change of pace for him and the entire group. This time they faced a Pokémon that Zanas was searching for, but never found, until now. "Um…boss…why is that Mankey look so angry?" Runt asked fearfully. "A what?!" Zanas reached for his PokeDex and scanned the area, though the Pokémon was plain in sight. When finished, the device showed a file about the creature and spoke in a robotic rhythm and tone. "Mankey…the pig monkey Pokémon. Light and agile on its feet, and ferocious in temperament. When angered it flies into an uncontrollably frenzy." The creature was a small monkey bodied creature with white fur and a pig snout. Zanas couldn't see any noticeable mouth so it must have been hiding behind the shaggy hair. The Mankey snorted and began jumping up and down angrily. Even with Zanas's ability to speak with Pokémon, he couldn't understand a word the thing was saying. "Um…Runt did you catch any of that." The bird shook both its head and body, afraid of what the enraged creature would do. "Aw man." Zanas groaned. "Just when I already caught the legal limit in this route." "The what?" Runt asked, his attention peering away from the Mankey for a moment. "You but munching, no good, home wrecking sons of Groudon!" The Mankey yelled, his words slurring together in a fashion even the local drunkard couldn't match. As he stomped closer and closer toward Runt and Zanas, he continued to rant his gibberish as the two desperately tried to calm him down and ask what was wrong. Soon he was inches away from the poor birds face, still screaming his gibberish. "You 'tamed' Pokémon are all alike! You think you can just waltz in here and do whatever you damned well please. Like sending a buck toothed purple rodent through my tree and knocking me out of it!" Zanas watched the Ape, his brow raised in curiosity. He kept to himself as he watched the argument and contemplated the fact that this argument was with talking Pokémon. This was still new to him and a little entertaining. "I-I…." The little bird began shaking, his eyes grown wide in fear. The wild Mankey leaned in closer, its eyes bloodshot and terrifying. The Ape continued to use, what Zanas thought was leer, baling his hand into a fist, breathing heavily as the anger seemed to gush out of every pour of its body. "I am going to mess you up so bad…" "Runt don't hold back." With that command, the poufy feathered bird flapped his arms faster and faster, the Mankey's expression shifting from rage to confusion as his body was pushed back from Runt by a few feet and further still. The Ape grabbed onto the ground, desperately trying to crawl foreword, but Runt's frantic flapping along with his orders, kept the wild Pokémon from making any progress. The pale furred creature looked up from the ground, watching as a Duke and Sasha sat comfortably on Zanas's shoulders, all three waving goodbye as Runt flapped harder, and screaming "Get away!" The Ape was dumbfounded over this tiny birds strength and soon enough its grip slipped and the Mankey flew farther and farther into the air and out of sight. "So how long until he hits the ground?" Zanas asked openly, as he Zanas walked over to Runt, who was painting and still shaking a bit. He made his movements clear so he didn't startle the Pidgey anymore, reaching his hand out and gently petting the birds head Sasha was first to answer the rhetorical question with a shrug. "At that speed and at the height he's still rising at…who cares." Duke yawned and groaned, almost slipping off of Zanas's shoulders. "Can we go back to sleep now?" "I second the motion." Sasha yawned, already curling up into her ball for a nap. Zanas turned his attention back toward the still shaken Runt. "You doing ok there champ?" Runt cooed as he was pet and calmed down. "Y-ya…I'm ok. Just…" "Just what?" "Just not used to kicking someone's butt! How did I do?" "You were so awesome!" Duke shouted with new energy, leaping from his owners shoulder and wrapping one arm around the bird in a buddy buddy fashion. "You stood your ground and didn't faint or anything. I would have just shot fire at him, but sending him on a one way trip across the country was cool to." Runt smiled at the compliment. "Well it's hard to be as great as you Duke." Duke smirked triumphantly and rose a fist up proudly at half arm length. "Ya I am pretty hard to compete with." "Really?" Sasha said, climbing down from Zanas's shoulder with her usual grace. "Because I remember running you around in circles as I kicked the hot air out of that fat head of yours." Duke growled threateningly. "Look at that, the rat thinks she's hot stuff." "Wow, a Charmander making a heat pun? You must have been up all night coming up with that load of tripe." Duke's eyes shifted into their aggressive nature. Zanas, sensing this, separated the two. "Hey now let's all be friends. You guys are just cranky from getting up early." Both Duke and Sasha continued to glare at one another for a long moment. Then they relaxed and sighed, agreeing with their trainer. Runt sighed in relief and flew up to his owners shoulder, cooing and joyfully rubbing his head into the boys hand when pet. The other two followed up Zanas body, Duke resting on the boy's fedora, his back facing the sun, as Sasha jumped straight to the boy's free shoulder. "Still…I did beat you senseless." "Shut it." All three boys groaned, sending Sasha into a giggling fit as they made their way out of Route 3. While Zanas waited for the team to rest up at the Viridian Center, he read and wrote down the recent events that came to pass on a piece of paper the nurse was happy to provide him. He was never very good at writing letters and not just because his hand writing was troches, but he just couldn't find the right words to put down. Talking was always the boys preferred expression of thought but then again; he'd opened his mouth one too many times and paid the price for it. Half an hour passed by as Zanas now had three pages filled with his grade school hand writing, full of what he had encountered thus far and where he planned to go next. After obtaining and envelope from the same nurse as before, he slid the letter, signed to his home address, into the red mail box. Zanas stood in front of the box, for a long moment, just thinking about how he had left his mother. He didn't' care about leaving Pallet town, didn't think of anyone else's feelings but his own until that night. She didn't; scream, didn't beg. Hell she didn't even speak the entire night. The only sign that she was accepting Zanas's choice was the back pack full of food, a map of the region, and a note asking him to write home. "Well... at least I kept my promise…that's enough for now right?" "Hey!" Zanas jumped as he spun around to see a line of people waiting in line to use the mail box. "O crap sorry!" Zanas side stepped out of line, and buried his face into his brown fedora, walking over to the nurse and grabbing his team in their miniaturized carriers. "Ok, note to self, if I must brood I should do it in a quiet place." Zanas left the Center, making his way back to the cross roads between the routes. As he walked, he heard two men talking. "Is that the hall I think you mean?" The scruffy man asked. The larger built man nodded. "Yup, my father used to take me there when I was a kid. Remember back then you could walk inside and see the champion of the time, no need for special access like today." "True but things have changed, especially with…well you know." The conversation between the men seemed to have grown dark and awkward. Zanas quit his eaves dropping, looking away from the two as he noticed that almost everyone in the area had been doing the same thing. The two men said their goodbyes and the crowd dispersed. Zanas, now curios, made his way back to route 22, now wanting to see this hall of champions. Zanas had let the trio out of their PokeBalls so they could run around free, while they made their way to the hall. Runt stayed on the boy's shoulder, just happy to not have to be paranoid over the things around him, while Duke and Sasha ran in circles, mostly playing but being their competitive selves as they did. It didn't take long for them to reach their destination, The Hall of Champions. The hall looked like a simple building on the outside, brown and metallic, but also had a nostalgic look while still looking brand new. Zanas noticed the crowd outside of the hall, a gate closed in front of the entrance and a guard waiting just outside. –Guess we'll learn about these specifications.- The group walked up to the crowd, who seemed to be tourists taking pictures, their kids running around screaming. A few noticed the Pokémon and rushed over to play and pet them. Runt clinged to Zanas's shoulder not liking the high pitched yells of the humans, while Duke and Sasha sat still and let themselves be pet, though occasionally growling or snapping at anyone that pulled at their tales. Zanas walked up to the guard, presenting his trainer card. The man seemed ecstatic to not have to deal with another tourist, offering his hand to the boy. "It's good to see someone here on actual business." Zanas shook the mans hand, but was confused by what he meant. "Um…business?" The guard shared Zanas's expression and then seemed to realize what was happening. "I see. Still a newbie aren't you? Well that's still better than hearing these parents ask how much it is to come inside." Zanas smirked and crossed his arms. "Does that mean I'm allowed free access?" "Ha! Not quite. You taking on the league challenge right? Following the rules and laws?" "That's right." Zanas answered, feeling his two Pokémon rush back to him. "These kids are animals." Duke whimpered. "My tail feels numb!" Sasha squeaked "That's a lively bunch you've got their kid. But it's even more obvious that you're not ready to take on the Elite Four yet." Zanas's eyes grew wide. "Wait, you mean this is where…?" "Ok now you're starting to sound like a tourist." The man sighed in annoyance and rubbed at his eyes. "Where are you from kid? Everyone knows this is where the Champions tournament is held. You act like you've been living under a rock…" The guard then began to snicker. 'Or Pallet Town." Zanas had left the moment the guard mocked his home town. Only he was allowed to insult where he lived. Duke and Sasha began playing their strange version of dragon and mouse, as Runt followed them over head, enjoying the spectacle. 'Come on guys." Zanas called back, having made a far distance away from the trio. "Pick up the pace." Zanas turned to continue the walk, seeing the three running toward their trainer, when Zanas stopped cold. His eyes went wide, his hands twitched and his jaw dropped to the point of breaking. "b-b….b-bulba…" A female Bulbasaur, a green skinned and spotted Pokémon with a large plant bulb growing on its back, sat across from him, sleeping in a small flower patch. The three had caught up with Zanas, now seeing what was making the boy so distraught. "That's rare…and almost too much of a coincidence." Sasha said, eyeing the rare Pokémon from afar. "She looks…familiar." Duke thought, now both ground Pokémon pondering as Runt flew to Zanas's shoulders. "Boss are you ok?" Zanas nodded, a smile slowly growing across his face as he crept closer and closer to the sleeping Pokémon. Zanas knelt down to Sasha and Duke's level, telling the purple Rattata to wait for his signal. She nodded and now Zanas, Sasha and Duke were crawling slowly toward the Bulbasaur, careful to keep quite. Runt kept his head low while on his trainer's shoulders, handing the boy one of the other unused PokeBalls to him. "Alright…ready?" Zanas asked his trio, who all nodded. "Sasha quick attack in three…two…one…now!" The Bulbasaur jumped to life, seeing the group dispersed, and Sasha rushing hard at it while Zanas ran in a large oval shape to get to the green lizards back. Duke and Runt ran the opposite direction and met Zanas at the end. Sasha made contact with the Creature, sending it into a roll for a brief moment. The Bulbasaur popped off the ground and managed to gain it's footing. "Sasha, another quick attack!" Zanas called, Sasha happily going for another strike. The Bulbasaur looked confused, looking around for something, not paying attention to Sasha's attack, sending the Pokémon flying another few feet. "Um…buddy?" Duke spoke up, pulling on Zanas's jacket. "What's up?" Zanas took his eyes of the battle as Sasha waited for the next order, the Bulbasaur still looking for something or someone. "I think I know who that is." "What? How could you?" "Ivy vine whip now!" The Bulbasaur no longer seemed confused, as a shrill voice shot from now where and the Bulbasaur grabbed and chucked Sasha threw the air at Zanas's feet. The boys rushed to her, thought she quickly shrugged the attack off. "Sasha you ok?" The proud rat made a "pfft" sound at this question. "She'll need to do better than that if she wants to defeat me." Zanas smiled and pated the rodents head, getting back to his feet. He pointed and opened his mouth to give a command, only instead of words a strange sound of yelling and confusion came from his mouth, matched with the other finger and screaming done by the little girl across the field. The Pokémon all looked at their trainers confused, except for Duke who jumped up and down, pointing at May and the Bulbasaur. "I told you I knew who that was!" Day 3 Part 2 Spoiler "You senile old bat, what were you thinking?!" Zanas's voice boomed into the video phone at the Pokémon Center. After arguing for a good half hour with the sibling of Zanas's childhood companion, the two took their respective partners and returned to Viridian. May complained the entire way about how the town was boring and there were only the three buildings worth noting, one of which was a gym that was closed, to Zanas's dismay. Otherwise this was just a town engulfed in the middle of the woods and tall grass, much like the two's home town. "It's good to hear from you to you Zanas." Professor oak said with a dull tone. "How could you let May just take the last of your 'rare' Pokémon? Me and Gary had to weight eight Arceus damn years past our initial travel date, but May, who is barley fifteen mind you, can just be given a free ride, and with me no less?!" The professor squeezed his fingers between his eyes, in addition to taking a deep breath. "I know Zanas and I deserve all the hateful venom spit words you can scream at me, but there are two things you need to keep in mind." The professor leaned to his right, adjusting his vision so he could see just past Zanas's shoulder, pointing behind him as he continued to speak. "The first of which is that you need to remember your in a public facility and that when you scream over the phone everyone can hear you." The boy turned around to see the entire occupancy of the center, from visitors to nurses and Pokémon alike, staring at him with annoyed expressions. Zanas gave a weak smile and mouthed sorry as he waved to the crowd, slowly turning back toward the video screen broadcasting Oak's smug grin in full HD "And the second thing?" The boy snapped. "You and Gary are the only kids May has ever had contact with. You two are her entire life besides Pallet town." "What? Come on that's not true." "Name one friend that girl has brought over besides the ones you occasionally met when your mother and I took you to Viridian, or at least one person her age she kept in touch with. Zanas pondered through all the names or faces of the few kids he and Gary made friends with, and sure enough the professor was right. May didn't have any friends to call her own. She was always to shy and spoiled. "It's not like we were never coming back." Zanas pointed out, as if defending his case to a court judge. "We all know this Zanas but the fact is it's already been close to four days and I can only keep her entertained for less than five minutes before she complains she bored." "Ya, I've noticed that recently" Zanas looked back to May, who was too preoccupied with all the Pokémon to notice anything else around her. She had altered her appearance from her completely white dress to a pink skirt that stretched down to her ankles, and her top was now a white tank top that covered up to her collar bone and was neatly tucked within her skirt. Her hair was kept in to one long ponytail held together by pink hair bands. -What is up with the girls obsession with pink?- "I know it's not fair to just drop her on your lap like this" Oak continued. "Gary is already making his way to Cerulean city and I don't want to make him back track. Well…not again." Zanas perked up at the Professors comment, but the old timer waved it off instantly. "May doesn't want to take the league challenge, she just wants to see the world and meet people, so you don't have to worry about her always trying to compete with you." -As if she'd stand a chance- Zanas mentally remarked. "Just…let her tag along until you run into Gary again. I'll get in touch with him about this when you leave for Petalburg." Zanas groaned again, weighing if he should tell the old man to deal with his own grandkids for a change instead of playing the "Poor me I'm old" card. Both men could hear May giggling in the back as she played with Ivy, her Bulbasaur, and the other Pokémon, treating them like new born Poocheyana's, making silly noises and petting them. He smiled, remembering how distant she used to be when near Pokémon. –Not so shy now are you squirt? - Zanas turned his focus back on oak and nodded. "Fine but in that case I want you to do me a favor as well. The professor laughed, "Even when you were a child you forced me into verbal contracts. Alright, what do you need?" "Just…tell mom I'm ok and that she doesn't have to worry." The professor gave a nod of approval, "Will do." As the old man turned the screen to the phone off, Zanas suddenly registered a sentence he had missed earlier. "Wait!" But the only answer was the dial tone. "Damnit." Zanas whispered. "Cerulean city…he's already going that far?" "How long is she going to talk like that?" Duke asked with his eyes clenched shut in blind irritation. "Arceus kill me." Sasha whimpered, her expressions matching the Charmander's. May pet and stroked Ivy as she continued to talk down to the Pokémon treating them as if they were as dense as humans think Magikarp are? "You three are so cute! Yes you are. Yes you are!" "….I can't take much more of this…Sasha, can you impale me with those enormous chompers of yours?" Duke teased. "If I have to suffer this madness then there's no way I'm going to show you mercy." Runt was shaking again, only this time in frustration. The flying type was painting heavily as his eyes began to go wide, jumping from one end of the room to the next as he desperately tried to find a way out."I can't take this…I'm goona…gonna…" "So what did I miss?" Zanas asked, as he walked over to the group after tearing away from the phone call. His Pokémon ran and clung on to him for dear life, all screaming in unison "Don't you ever leave us with that girl again!" "What are they so excited about?" May asked curiously. The three Pokémon glared at her, moving to their trainers shoulders, except Duke who moved to his head, and hid behind the boy's frame. Zanas smiled weakly, knowing the feeling all too well at times. May "hmped" at the three's reactions. "I was just trying to be nice." "Ha ha. They know, just…their not used to being babied." "Well that's too bad, because Ivy here loves when I spoiler her, don't you baby?" The Bulbasaur stayed silent, rubbing her head lovingly into her owners hand and face as May nuzzled her Pokémon and continued her onslaught of baby talk. Zanas and the trio all eyed the two's affection with sickened expressions. –This…is awkward- "So what did gramps have to say?" Is he mad?" Zanas sat next to the girl, his Pokémon climbing to the other side of his body to keep their distance from the girl. "No…in fact we worked out a deal." "What kind?" Zanas pat May's head and smiled. "That if you don't behave yourself I'm allowed to feed you to the next wild Pokémon we see." Ivy snapped to attention and glared at Zanas, her vines at the ready to protect her trainer. "Now now Ivy he's just kidding." May said, motioning her Bulbasaur to sit down. "What did he really say?" Zanas chuckled, "I'm supposed to look after you until we get to Cerulean City and you get to keep your friend there." May's face grew brighter and brighter in delight as she jumped with glee at this news, squeezing Ivy to her chest, the once happy creature now gasping for air in the child's grasp. "Did you hear the Ivy, you get to stay. We get to stay!" May had hoped around in circles a handful of times before she looked at Zanas and his rag tag group, eyeing her in a similar fashion the crowd had done to Zanas earlier. May let go of Ivy and coughed, bowing her head for in gratitude. Thank you. I promise I won't be a nuisance." "Awww." Zanas smiled, patting the young girls head. "Of course you will you little ball of chaos." "Bite me fedora boy." "O it's not me you have to worry about biting." May tilted her head slightly. "What is that suppose to mean?" Zanas remained quiet, walking away from the girl and the center. May asked again, her voice now slightly hostile. "Zanas what does that mean? Zanas?!" 3 hours later The Viridian forest was, to no surprise, a maze of thigh high grass and country home sized trees, each housing more than enough bug Pokémon to start an army. While inside the forest, the group quickly realized that this wasn't going to be a quick straight shoot to the exit. The man made path in this immense, almost jungle like location, was full of unnecessary twists and turns that either led them into a dead end or into the face of a new challenger and every single trainer in this forest was unhealthily obsessed with the bug type Pokémon that called this mess of a place home and that consisted of only four different kinds of creatures. These creatures were two types of segmented worms and both of their cocoon evolutions, all of which could do nothing but sting or spray the trio team with string. The brown colored and needle horned worms were called Weedles. Their stingers contained poisons that could slowly eat away and damage anyone who would be foolish enough not to carry an antidote or two, though otherwise these cute pink nosed creatures were harmless. The second of these elongated bugs was Caterpie, and the first Bug Pokémon Zanas had encountered. Its segments were covered in a bright green tint with spots of darker green along its back and instead of a stinger; this creature had a pink horn that extended in two different directions on its head, left and right. That was all in the past. Zanas's squad of Pokémon and his tag along made their way out of the second entrance hall to the forest and toward the entrance to Petalburg, the location of Zanas's first gym battle. "Yes!" Zanas screamed, stretching out the word for as long as one breath could last him. Duke ran up next to his Partner, pumping both fists in the air alongside the boy. "We made it!" Sasha and Runt took their time to catch up, The Rattata strolling along in her usual confident fashion while Runt played with the strong breeze that had picked up since the afternoon. He was attempting to stay air borne by riding the wind only flapping when he needed to move forward. "That was defiantly an interesting walk. Sasha chuckled at this, nodding. "Yes…interesting…that's the word. Especially the way you took down that 'horrible slimy creature' earlier." If the avian creature's face could flush, it would have then. "It didn't mean to I swear! It just snuck up on meeeeeEEE!" Runt flopped head first into the ground as the wind picked up again. The Pidgey was too occupied with presenting his case to pay attention to adjusting his form. Sasha halted when she saw the bird drop. "Are you ok?" Runt laughed as he picked his body of the ground. "I think I'll stick to the ground for a while. It's too much work to fly." "If you say so." Sasha laughed. Zanas sat next to the route sign, pointing where Petal burg was located, as if it wasn't obvious already, and waiting for the others to catch up. Sasha and Runt were there within a few of the Pidgey's hops, but May and her Bulbasaur were still far behind. "Come on Slowpoke." May shuffled slowly out of the hall, shaking similarly to Runt's nervous habit, as she muttered to herself. Her body still held hints of string that the Caterpies had shot at them, too terrified and possibly traumatized to wipe them off like her fedora wearing friend. When May reached the sign, she slowly, very slowly, read the words and numbers aloud, as if she needed to be one hundred percent sure that she was free of that horrible forest. She looked to Zanas with a weak smile, and tears in her eyes, her voice a whisper so quiet one would think she was hiding from someone. "No more forests?" Zanas nodded a mischievous grin on his face. May nodded and held herself tighter, shaking more and more until she broke. She screamed at the top of her lungs, slapping away any and all traces of Bug on her, her words slurring together cursing Arceus for making such horrible creatures. The squad all began laughing as the girl reached the middle of her rant, rolling on the ground, gasping for breath only to hiccup and laugh again. "This….isn't…funny," May screamed as she started kicking and stomping on the man who forced her to go that terrible route. Zanas begged for mercy, still laughing his head off only now his gasps for air turned into grunts as the little girl kicked him harder and harder. "Enough…enough." Zanas jumped to his feet, walking away from the girl, his cackling now a small chuckle. "I'm sorry…but that…I knew that was going to…bug you." After taking a well deserved break at another Pokémon Center, the group took their time to look around the town and enjoy their new surroundings. They were all relived to be out of the forest after so many hours of trudging, but May was the most jubilated to be away from anything having to do with Viridian City, including the forest. The group looked at the sites, seeing that Petalburg was not all that different from the town before as it consisted of one Pokémon Center, one PokeMart and a few houses for the citizens who lived there. The town also had its own gym just up the hill next to the Center and PokeMart. It was similar in outside design with its simple white walls, PokeBall symbol above the sliding doors and a brown tiled roof. The only noticeable difference between this gym and the other was that Petalburg's was open. Other than that, there stood a museum just behind the gym, filling up space amongst the trees and forest surrounding it. "This place isn't all that different from Viridian is it?" May pointed out. "There is a little more life here but that's about it." Sasha adjusted on Zanas's shoulder, curling up comfortably while Duke rested in the indentation of the boy's hat and Runt kept still on his left shoulder. "More life?" Sasha questioned, the girls words. "Besides a few farmers and a gym that's actually open theirs about s much life here as there are tumble weeds." Zanas pet Sasha's head, staying off the Rat's irritation. "Calm down. Like you said we still have the gym to contend with and this will probably be worthy of your skills." Sasha raised her head up proudly. "My standards are very high fedora boy. Keep that in mind." "Why does everyone act like the fedora is a bad thing." May turned to face Zanas, keeping her back towhatever was infront of her as she snickered. "Cause it's a dopy hat for a dopy boy." Sasha laughed as her trainer groaned. "I'm starting to like this girl." Zanas had only toldMay about his talent towards pokemon and since before the grinding in the forest May seemed to jump into any conversation Zanas had with his partners as if knowing exactly what they were saying. "If that's the case, we can trade and I can fight the first gym leader with Ivy while you get put into dresses."Sasha kept quiet, dredding that Zanas may be seriose. When she ,looked over to May, the girls eyes had grown wide with anticipation, likely plotting Sasha irst uncomfortable get up. "What is the first gym like exactly?" Runt asked, his head twisting and tilting in curiosity. "I mean what Pokémon can we expect to face here?" Without a word, Zanas pulled out the red device, the PokeDex, to show his answer rather than tell. The device liked like a hand held note book, bright apple red with a blue camera lens in the upright corner. Zanas clicked the middle of the tablet to reveal a swing outdoor which opened to a small screen, built in speaker system and an array of buttons of yellow and black hugh. Zanas clicked the black buttons then one yellow to retrieve a map of Petalburg and a side bar of text showing information about the city. The screen the flashed into the gym insignia and revealed a dark skinned man with spiky, almost Sandslash styled hair, with shut or tightly squinting eyes. The man wore a plan shirt and what seemed to be a green vest over the white top, accompanied by a pair of dark brown jeans and black tennis shoes, flat at the soul of the shoe with black on the upper design and white on the lower. As Zanas read through the text, duke cralwed down and sniffed the device, pressing one of the yellow buttons. The blue camera began flashing as a robotic and somehow nerdy voice came from the speaker systems. Runt jumped and hid behind Zanas, while Duke and Sasha stayed where they were, Sasha looking bored and Duke looking intrigued. "Brock. The holder of the Boulder badge and generally seen as a trainers first challenge within the league. Brock uses rock type Pokémon such as Geodude and Onyx, though his arsenal can consist of far more variety and strength given the challenge." The PokeDex showed a picture of both the creatures it had named on its screen. Geodude looked like a rigid rock with a human like face and two arms, but that was all. No torso or neck or legs, just a head and arms. The entire body was likely no bigger than Duke or the others. The Onyx however appeared to be a large almost monstrous snake made of boulders at each segment of its body. The face looked reptilian in nature but had no teeth, just a beak like mouth and a horn pointed away from its face, scaling a few feet higher than its large head. "We have to fight that thing?" Runt shuddered. Sasha laughed at her team mates frightful manner "Oh come now Runt it's just an over grown python…made of boulders." Duke looked up to Zanas, his stare not as naive and cutesy as when they first started this journey, but more mature and tactical much like his trainer. "We have a disadvantage against something like this, don't we?" Zanas and the other two looked between eachother, surprised at the logic Duke was putting into this fight and fearful that what the fire breather said was true. Something wrong?" May asked, walking over to the four reading the dex. May leaned in, Zanas's three parters crawling away from the girl, though she didn't notice this time. "O I see…you nervous about the battle?" Zanas nodded, "We have a bit of a disadvantage with this guys rock types. Also I don't know how strong each one of these guys are individually." "Wait…you havn;t checked?" Zanas's trio looked between the two conversing humans, lost in what the topic of the matter was. "I'm still trying to figure this thing out. That old man didn't give me a manual for this piece of junk." May nodded in agreement. "Ya I had trouble getting mine to work to. It's not very clear how to work these things." "Wait he gave you….you stole that too didn't you." "And a little bit of money for necessities." May smiled and stuck her tongue out whilst winking as she hoped to be cute and insulting, succeeding in both. "Zanas what are you to going on about?" Sasha demanded "One second…I think I;ve got it"Again fiddling with the PokeDex, Zanas had the camera scan and reveal his partners' stats, revealing their level and strengths. A proud grin swept across his face as the boy read his Creatures progress to them. "Duke, from level five to level fourteen, Sasha Level six to level fourteen, and Runt level ten to level six to thirteen." "And this all means what exactly?" The purple rodent asked. "Brocks weakest Pokémon, the ones we are only allowed to face are level fourteen. Duke you know Metal claw now which is super effective, not to mention your ember attack which is strong enough to do medium damage to a rock or ground type." Duke puffed his chest out proudly and pounded one fist on his heart as if to salute. "Sasha you know hyper fang which can do some decent damage to a rock type as long as we get some critical hits before any defense curls and unlike duke you won't have any type disadvantages against a rock type move." Zanas smirked as he saw Sasha pose as if for a photo. "Plus you can take a hit." "But of course. I am the best of my kind." "And Runt" The bird jumped to attention, afraid of what his trainer was going to say. "I know…my attacks aren't strong enough against them and unlike the others I can't take a hit." "True true…but you can dodge. You're the fastest one on our team so we won't have any trouble getting you on the field if Sasha or Duke needs a break." "Which I won't." Both Duke and Sasha commented, sharing a look of surprise with each other, then pride as they slapped their paws together. "We're gonna play this one safe guys. We can't use healing items within a battle so if we need to switch out we switch. Runt I just need you to move and move fast." Zanas knelt down and pet his avian friend. "Got it?" Runt nodded and cooed from the petting. When Zanas pulled his hand away the Pidgey looked calm, and for once energetic. "We are gonna take this fight and beat this Brock so hard he won't know what hit him." All three Pokémon nodded, smiling proudly. May smiled, thinking –I have no idea what's going on but im still excited.- "So you think you're ready to take on a master like Brock?!" a high pitched yet masculine voice called behind the group. Zanas turned to see the voice belonged to a form fitting for the high pitch, a young Boy Scout looking child dawning a full green uniform with a baseball cap long socks hiking boots and vest covered in mock badges. "Let's just see how great you think you are." "Who are you suppose to be?" The boy grunted and three his first PokeBall, revealing a Geodude slightly smaller than the one shown on the PokeDex screen. "I'm Brock's trainee, and if you think you're going to fight the greatest rock Pokémon trainer in Kanto, think again. My job is to deal with chumps like you so Brocks precious time isn't wasted." "Wasted?" Sasha commented. "He's a gym leader, what else does he do besides fight other trainers for sport?" Zanas sighed as he brought up his hands in defeat. "Kid .listen I really don't want to fight with you, I'm in a hurry to get to Cerulean and I frankly don't have time for." "Buddy watch out!" Duke cried, as the Geodude threw a noggin sized rock at the boy. Zanas bent backwards; slamming his head on the ground as his feet fell with him while duke broke the flying dabree with his metal claw. Zanas sat up rubbing his bumped head as the trio of Pokémon rushed to his side. "You little brat!" The boy smirked as if he had proven his point. "Am I still a waste of time." Sasha and duke growled at this bratty child, only to be held back by their owner. "Runt you're up." "Me?" runt chirped, shaking again. "You won't get a lought of experience in the real fight so I don't want you falling behind. Besides this kid, if you pardon the pun, is child's play?" Zanas glared at the boy as he spoke his insult, making the child flush either from the bad comedy or he was truly shamed by Zanas's words. "You jerk! When I'm done with you I'm gonna stomp on that stupid hat of yours still it's as flat as a pancake!" Zanas jumped to his feet, determination in his eyes, tilting his fedora over his forehead as of habit. "Now you've just gone too far."