Humanity has finally gotten fed up with their fragile position in the world of Pokémon. Gathering the best of trainers, they have decided to subdue or dispose of every powerful Pokémon in existe...
"I'm dumping this thing…" Zerobi muttered as she tore her cloak off and threw it away, "Stupid thing did nothing but hinder me the entire time…" For an instant Lucario felt like doing the same to his backpack, but his thoughts were interrupted as the other Lucario began moving towards him. He was frozen in place and could do nothing but stare at their savior while Zerobi slumped down next to a wall. He could tell that they were the same from head to toe, with one or two minor differences. It was like he was staring at a twisted reflection. The form of a Pokémon was not something he had gotten used to, but that did little to lessen the surreal sight of a slightly alternate version of himself.
Firstly, he determined that the other Lucario had to be female, if her voice and protruding chest was anything to go by. Secondly, the word ‘protruding’ stuck in his mind as his eyes fixated on a giant spike sticking out of her torso, before shifting over and seeing two similar spikes stuck on the back of her hands. Even their clothing was similar, although her shorts seemed to be slightly more detailed and in better condition than his. It also seemed like the color of her fur had been inverted somehow, meaning that her chest was blue while her arms and legs were yellow, but it was hard to tell. Long strings of light seeping in through cracks in the walls and ceiling was the only thing keep the room from complete darkness.
Those few holes came at the cost of warmth, as everyone except for Zerobi felt uncomfortably chilled. Even so Lucario barely paid any notice to it as he was still heated up from the earlier battle, and the female Lucario seemed to be far too occupied with eyeing him intently to notice something like that. He was starting to get uncomfortable, and felt that he should probably be doing something.
“… Thanks…?” Lucario said, to which the other Lucario’s ears twitched. Suddenly, she gave off a beaming smile that made her face noticeably brighten up, even in the darkness.
“I knew it! I knew it was your aura I sensed!” she burst out happily, “Oh, Cyon… I-I was so worried!” The yellow Lucario cried tears of joy as she ran up to Lucario in the hopes of embracing him. However, Lucario noticed the giant spike sticking out of her chest, and sidestepped her instead. Zerobi couldn’t help but look at the whole situation with amusement, as she felt quite at home in both the darkness and the cold.
“Y-Your words don’t match your actions!” Lucario stammered with a startled voice as the female Lucario turned around to face him. Her eyes were dimmed from tears as she was looking at him with confusion.
“Cyon…? What are you…” she said slowly as her voice became more and more worried, “… Why are you looking at me like that…?”
“… Like what? I’ve never even seen you before!” Lucario replied. The moment the other Lucario heard this she inhaled deeply in shock, her face instantly contorting into a mixture of surprise and sorrow.
“B-But…” she stammered as she took a step closer so he would see her better, “It’s me! Rukario! I’m your wife!”
“My… WHAT!?” Lucario blurted out as he took a step backward in dazzlement. Now his face was also one of confusion as he looked around, his eyes suddenly locking with Zerobi’s.
“Uh, you don’t have to pretend for my sake…” she mumbled, waving her hand in the air.
“What? NO!” Lucario replied, struggling for an explanation, “I just got here, how on earth could I have a wife!?”
“Cyon…” Rukario whispered softly as she moved closer, “Why are you doing this? Please stop…!”
“Stop calling me Cyon! My name’s…” Lucario shouted in annoyance before suddenly trailing off for a few moments, “… Lucario.” He looked at Zerobi for a moment before looking back at Rukario, not really sure who he least wanted to try and explain everything to.
“Cyon…” Rukario repeated sadly and moved even closer, the spike on her chest almost touching him at this point, “… What happened to you? I-I… I was so worried when you didn’t come home…”
“Listen…” Lucario said as he decided to man up and not back off anymore. He looked straight at her and tried his best to ignore the tears forming in the corner of her eyes.
“You’ve got the wrong Pokémon, lady” he said bluntly, not even blinking.
“Don’t be silly! I’d recognize your face and voice anywhere!” she replied hopefully as she squeezed her hands to her chest in a praying motion, “Not to mention your… Lack of spikes…”
“I think you’re confused - I’m just another Lucario without spikes” Lucario continued while shaking his head, “This is stupid. Zerobi, tell her!”
“Hmm… She seems to know you a little too well to be a complete stranger, though…” Zerobi muttered with a hint of doubt in her voice, “You sure you didn’t just hit your head and forget about her or something?”
“Grr… Not you too!” Lucario growled as he felt betrayed, “I told you! I’m a human! You don’t just get memories from amnesia!”
“… Is… Is that what this is about?” Rukario asked quietly while lowering her head, “… The human thing?”
“Yeah!” Lucario responded quickly as he felt the situation turning in his favor, “No offense, but I could never get married to something like you!”
“You always said that you wondered what it felt like to be human…” Rukario whispered before looking up at him again with tears seeping out of her, “Oh, my poor Cyon… What happened to you?”
“Ugh, won’t listen to reason…” Lucario mumbled as he shrugged to himself, “I guess being a typical woman goes beyond being human...”
“Listen to me!” Rukario shouted straight in his face as she had a sudden stroke of determination, “You are not human! You are my husband! I am your wife! I have been searching for you all this ti-“
“You found the wrong person, then!” Lucario interrupted while suddenly remembering the situation they were in, “Thanks for showing us this place - Now quiet down, or they’ll find us.”
“Good idea” Zerobi suddenly chimed in, “Otherwise you can ask the police to find your missing husband while the two of us are being shipped off to some disciplinary camp…”
“Wait… That’s all that happens if we’re caught?” Lucario asked as he turned around to see the Weavile sitting down in a corner of the room.
“For you? Sure” Zerobi snickered darkly, “Me? They’ll probably reinstate public executions…”
“Considering how I’ve been treated by the humans so far, I’m pretty boned as well” Lucario chuckled while turning around to ignore the yellow Lucario, “Maybe they’ll make it a double-feature?”
“Please! Just… Just look at this picture!” Rukario pleaded as she reached into a pocket in the front of her pants and pulled out a small card with an image on it. Zerobi sighed, rose and walked over to them as they carefully bended over to look at it, Lucario feeling a little jealous that his pants had no storage facilities and thus were inferior to hers.
The picture displayed two Pokémon with their arms around each other, on a large field of flowers with some kind of mountain behind them. It was of high quality, so the faces of two Pokémon were visible and easily identified as Lucario’s and Rukario’s. They were both smiling delightfully, Rukario looking as if she had just been told a good joke. While her face was recognizable, but it seemed as if it had become somewhat bleaker and lost some weight in comparison to the time this picture had been taken.
“It is…” Zerobi stammered in disbelief, “It is really you. There is no doubt about it.”
“… It can’t be!” Lucario said out loud while shaking his head, “It’s like you said, just another Lucario!” A dreadful feeling came upon him when he started to realize that he faintly remembered what the environment in the picture looked like, from beyond the frames and from a completely different angle.
“You fought too hard… You must have lost your memory somehow…” Rukario whispered as she looked up from the picture, a sorrowful and haunting smile across her face.
“N-No!” Lucario stuttered as a lingering pain began forming in his head, “I… I haven’t lost anything!”
“Please… Just… I don’t know what made you like this, but I promise…” Rukario continued while wiping one of the tears from her face, “… I promise that I will do whatever it takes to make you normal again!”
“Shut up! I am normal!” Lucario shouted, keeping himself from clutching his throbbing head since it would make him look very suspicious. Looking at Zerobi, he was met with a face of both betrayal and anger.
“Come here…” Rukario whispered as she walked up to the agitated Lucario, “I know something that might help you remember me…” She carefully took a hold of one of Lucario’s reluctant hands, and then placed it on her left breast.
“You always said our hearts are intertwined… Can’t you feel it?” she continued as she lifted her head to the ceiling and closed her eyes, “My heart… Crying out for you…?”
“Cut the bullcrap!” Lucario said as he quickly pulled his hand away from her and started getting even more angry, “My heart’s my own, and I’d never… At least not with someone I’ve never even seen before!”
“No, that picture is irrefutable…” Zerobi said with a furious tone in her voice before turning around and facing him, “… Lucario, did you lie to me?”
“You want me to lie to you!? FINE!” Lucario shouted as he clenched his fists, thoroughly fed up with being treated in this manner, “I’m a blasted wolf on two legs that is being chased by everyone for no good reason, and I like constantly getting into trouble over not knowing &%¤ about anything!”
“I-I didn’t mean…” Zerobi said out loud as she was taken aback by his rage.
“You saw the master ball! You saw it!” he bellowed while pointing accusingly at her, “I’ll recite the bloody periodic table right here right now if you want me to! I’M A MAN, DAMN IT!”
As if on cue, the door to the house flew open with a bang. Lucario became blinded by the light as several strange entities stormed in, and at the head of them was the lizard he remembered kicking in the head not long before.
“Correction - You’re a loud idiot” Snivy said with an almost disappointed tone. Behind him was a slightly greener humanoid Pokémon with flat hands colored in blue and red, as well as one of the Mienfoo from earlier.
“Snivy!” Zerobi exclaimed in surprise before sighing, “Aw, great…”
“Yeah, great!” Lucario shouted as he took a furious step towards the new arrivals, “I’m livid, and I’m gonna beat the ever living crap out of everyone here! Zerobi, you with me or what!?”
“I-I’m with you!” Zerobi quickly responded as she took a step towards him, “The master ball not working was-“
“NOW!” Snivy interrupted with a shout as he suddenly threw several vines at them. Zerobi swiftly leapt forward and cut them in midair as Lucario ran past them, kicking at Snivy who jumped back through the entrance of the house and made the attack miss. The Mienfoo came up and took a swing at his head from the side, but Lucario didn’t even bother dodging it as the aim was slightly off.
“Damn, you suck! Have a taste of my Aura…” Lucario yelled as a chill ran through his aching hands, recalling his previous attempts at manipulating the aura, “… My Aura Punch!” Lucario backhanded the hairy creature across the face. The moment his fist connected, it blew up into a ball of blue fire. The Mienfoo stumbled around and fell on his back while Lucario crouched over due to the pain emanating from his burning right hand.
“MY FACE! MY FAAAACEEE!” the Mienfoo screamed in agony while writhing on the ground.
“Watch the Roserade!” Zerobi suddenly yelled, Lucario looking up and seeing the green humanoid creature from earlier right in front of him. Its oddly shaped hands made it look like it was holding a pair of bouquets. It moved towards the weakened Lucario and slapped him across the face with one of its strange hands, making him yell out in pain as he felt his face being pierced by tiny spikes.
“Duck!” Zerobi shouted before exhaling a great cloud of chilling wind. Lucario hunched over even more as the Roserade was hit by it, and Lucario felt a chill run over his back as the walking flower fell over.
“She’s poisoned you!” Zerobi yelled as Lucario began picking off thorns that had somehow gotten stuck on his face, even though they were nothing compared to the aching of his right hand that was still present.
“Like I give a damn!” Lucario yelled back in rage before sensing an aura approaching him from behind.
“Cyon, I can’t let you do this! I-“ Rukario shouted, but couldn’t finish as Lucario suddenly spun around and struck her across the face with the back of his left hand. She was struck even harder by the shock that followed as she fell to the ground in a devastating motion.
“Unless that Cyon was a wifebeater, this should make you understand!” Lucario bellowed in anger, “You mean NOTHING to me! Piss off, or DIE!”
“Hey… Don’t you think you’re being too rough?” Zerobi asked as she looked down at the crying Rukario.
“Hypocrite!” Snivy yelled as he jumped through the entrance once more and landed on his stomach, quickly slithering around the room in a random pattern while leaving a trail of leaves behind him.
“T-The leaf storm…” Zerobi stammered as she felt a tingling sensation all over her body and she started shouting, “Lucario! We’ve got to get out of here!”
“You daft!?” Lucario shouted back as he tried stomping the slippery snake but kept missing, “We’re finally winning, and I’m sick of running!”
“Trust me on this!” Zerobi kept going while she ran towards the exit, “In eight seconds, this room is going to be a portal to hell!” Lucario hesitated for a heartbeat as he thought of how much trouble it had gotten him into so far, but decided to follow Zerobi anyway. She jumped over the collapsed Roserade and writhing Mienfoo, but when Lucario did the same he felt the same piercing sensation from earlier striking the underside of his body as well as his back. It didn’t hinder his movement in any way, so he ignored it and kept running.
“Stinkin' idiots… Man, I’m getting hungry…” Lucario said as he began calming down a bit while they were running past building after building, “How about a quick stop at a restaurant?”
“Look!” Zerobi shouted, signaling him to look forward where he saw that the houses were thinning out, “We’re almost outta here!”
“Then what? We keep running?” Lucario continued, running ahead of Zerobi to get a better view of their destination.
“Pretty much, but not for…” she replied, but trailed off when she suddenly saw several purple spines sticking out of his back, “… WHOA! When did you get those!?”
“Get what?” Lucario asked before remembering the piercing sensation, “Oh… Right now, I guess. That flower-sales thing must’ve hit me on the way out.”
“It’s poison!” Zerobi continued with a disgusted look on her face, “Man, you’re going to get SO sick from that!”
“Yeah, whatever…” Lucario responded since he was too concerned with their current situation to worry about the future, “By the way, since I trusted you this time, you owe me your trust in return!”
“What? Because you followed me?” Zerobi muttered as they ran past a few Pokémon hiding in an alleyway, “Like I care! Hey, you could’ve stayed in there if you wanted to be chopped into little pieces that much…“
Zerobi suddenly stopped herself from speaking and slowed down her running. Lucario looked ahead expecting a comeback from another one of the Mienfoo, but instead saw a tiny creature right at the edge of the city. He recognized it as the brown cat that had been walking next to Snivy, before everything came down upon them.
“What do we do?” Lucario asked Zerobi who just slowed down even more, until she was simply walking towards the small being. She didn’t give an answer, her gaze transfixed upon her old friend.
“Z-Zerobi…” the brown cat stammered quietly.
“Eve…” Zerobi whispered in return with a saddened voice.
“… I can’t…” Eve mumbled before shaking her head and shouting out loud, “I can’t let you g-get away!”
“Please, Eve…” Zerobi continued while feeling as is something had caught a tight grip of her heart, “I know it’s hard to believe, but I always treasured our friendship-“
“Shut up!” Eve shouted angrily in return, “You… You’re the most evil thing in this world! I regret ever meeting you!”
"I…" Zerobi said, the painful feeling in her chest increasing, "… I understand why you would think so… But it's been seven years, and we are both much older and wiser. Forgive… And forget…?"
“N-No words…” Eve mumbled to herself before suddenly lowering her head and starting to rush towards Zerobi, preparing to tackle her. Eve had barely taken five step forward before Lucario leaped forward, kicking her upwards in the chin so hard that she was thrown up into the air for a few seconds.
“Hah! What a lame way of attacking!” Lucario laughed while getting ready to hit her on the way down as well. Instead, Zerobi jumped up behind him and banged him hard on the head with her closed fist.
“OW! Wrong target, damn it!” Lucario growled in pain, clutching his head as the lifeless body of Eve crashed down on the ground in front of them.
“HEY!” Zerobi screamed with fury, “That’s my best friend! Don’t you DARE hurt her like that!”
“She wants you dead!” Lucario shouted back, “If that’s your best frien-“
“Never mind, we don’t have time for this” Zerobi interrupted and huffed angrily, “Snivy’ll be here any second.”
“Alright…” Lucario sighed in defeat as he approached Eve’s body, “So, what do we do? Do we bring her, or-“
“Leave her!” Zerobi interrupted again as she began fleeing, “Just run!”
“… Never see it coming…” Lucario mumbled to himself before following Zerobi once more. A few seconds later they had passed the last building of Snowpoint City, and began their escape through the never ending sea of snow…
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
"Heheh… You’re as fast as always…"
"… Brendan? What do you want?"
"That Lucario… It must be mine! I’ll fight you for it!"
"I have no interest in settling such an old score, Brendan."
"… Then I’ll trade you for it! That Tauros you always wanted…"
"… While that is quite tempting, I am afraid that I cannot hold up my end of the bargain. I was unable to catch the Lucario."
"… What!? Even you? Quit playing with me!"
"By ‘unable’ I meant ‘physically unable’. I used the Master Ball, and it did nothing."
"Have you finally gone senile!? Not only did you use a Master Ball, but it DIDN’T WORK!?"
"Not senile to the point that I know that is impossible."
"Even the Master Ball could not catch him… Have you told them about it?"
"… WHAT!? Why!?"
"You know what our orders were. Catch or kill. I will not let an innocent Pokémon die for their cause."
"… You’re still far too soft! I always told you it’d be your downfall, now it seems it’s become the downfall of us all!"
"You know what is at stake here, and you LET IT LIVE!?"
"… How do we know that killing it is the only way? There might be another solution…"
"Withered old fool… Tell me, are you willing to risk it?"
"… Fine! It’s about time that you fail where I succeed! I’ll crush that impudent bug, and I’ll be revered as a hero!"
"Listen to yourself, Brendan. You sound… Insane."
"… Yes. You’re right… As always. Even so… It seems that the task ahead is too much for you, old man."
"Go work on your requiem, pray I succeed and give you enough time to finish it."
"… Nothing? No witty retort? No ‘you’re wrong and I’m right, now here’s why?’ You really are bygone."
"I will not kill it… But I will find a way to stop it."
"Hah! Go ahead and try! Just don’t think you’re going to beat me to it!"
"… A challenge?"
"You bet! But I’m not getting any younger, either… Let’s make it our last… And best!"