Diamond 73: Give me Destiny
Don't Give Me Diamonds
Diamond 73: Give me Destiny
In an unspecified time at an undisclosed location, a teenage boy entered a dark room followed by two pokemon. The room was shaped as a long rectangle with a tall ceiling. A thick red carpet five feet wide covered the metal floor from the entrance to the other side. Two three feet wide stripes of silver floor were visible on either side of the carpet. Its edges left and right were adorned in golden lines parallel to its length.
The boy walked down the long room. It had no windows as it was underground. A multitude of crystals hung from the ceiling producing dim light. Two waterfalls fell left and right at the end of the room. The water flowed down the walls seemingly disappearing when it hit the floor. In their center there was a throne upon three steps. The throne was surrounded by red curtains. Not a single sound could be heard, not even from the water. The footsteps were lost on the soft carpet.
Upon the throne there sat a woman. The clothes she wore were of a dark color, their details unperceivable in the darkness of the room. The glimmer of a diamond around her neck could be seen, its shape akin to a crescent moon. The woman's hair was long and golden, perhaps too golden to be a real shade of blond. Her eyes were brown, focused and piercing. Her straight hair ended in curls. She twisted one of the curls around her fingers with long crimson nails. She looked young, but she was just old enough to be the boy's mother.
To her left, two shadowy figures stood with green and purple hair. To her right there was another shadowy figure with red hair. They were very much alive, but stood motionless like statues. The boy stopped in front of the lady, his eyes determined, "mother?"
"The experiment was successful," the woman on the throne informed. The throne was plated in gold, with comfy red covers. "We have what is needed, the mission is yours."
The red haired figure extended a hand from the shadows. The lady on the throne received the item given to her. It was a strange machine, shaped as a thick wand of metal. Its handle was a foot long with a glowing green jewel at the end. Lime green ones and zeroes floated endlessly inside the jewel's light. Tiny wires entered the jewel from the metal handle forming a faded web inside it.
The two pokemon with the boy were a female Vulpix and a male Persian. They both had thick black collars. The Vulpix looked worried, "is it alright?" As she spoke a red light appeared on her collar tracing the sound waves. Her voice came out in the human language, sweet and concerned.
The woman in the throne scoffed, "must you keep those collars on them at all times? Tell me again how you found those two oddball fur balls?"
"They found me," there was a defensive edge to the boy's tone. He loved his pokemon, even if Vulpix was too kind for her own good at times. Persian's personality was quite different. He always encouraged his trainer to take all the opportunities that came his way, even if it meant breaking the rules.
"The card," the regal woman spoke. The shadowy figure with green hair handed the boy something. It was what appeared to be a collectible card with a picture of a Pikachu. That particular card was shiny and durable, it was much rarer then a regular Pikachu card. "Everything will be as we discussed."
The boy nodded, "I'm ready," he insisted with determination. His brown eyes matched those of his mother. His hair was mostly brown as well, save for a line of gold in the middle, spiked up. The challenging look on his face was an often used expression for him; others included a cocky grin or dense confusion. He grinned as he spoke his parting words, "make sure not to fall in battle if he returns."
The woman ceremoniously lifted the odd scepter, its green jewel glowing. She ignored the boy's warning with a cocky grin of her own, "away you go!" She lowered the scepter and reminded, "you must blend in. Get ready and then you may leave." The boy knew she was right about that.
xoxox xox xoxox
In the present time, all over Kanto and perhaps soon the world, a dark legacy threatened to consume life little by little. The remnants of the virus introduced to Kanto by Poisona were slowly coming to light. It would be a long and arduous journey in the field of science. Many wondered if they would be able to come up with a solution on time. Even if the problem wasn't obvious yet, it was real.
Iblis' latest report gave the investigators another clue. As a result they discovered that traces of the virus had infected various storages of food shipped for human consumption. The investigation had been previously looking in the wrong place. Poisona didn't try to infect the pokemon directly; she aimed for the humans who would spread it.
It was already too late to stop the infection. The virus was still not something the public was well informed about. Humans suffered from no symptoms. The virus developed slowly within them, becoming stronger until it infected pokemon and began to weaken them progressively. It was happening so slowly that it was not yet a real epidemic, but the problem had already been released into the world.
Unaware of the situation concerning the virus, Ash, Misty and her family had their own reasons to be doubtful of the future. "I wish I could do something," Ash had insisted. He had gotten a look of determination as if he could take on the world.
Misty had to calm him down, "let's give everything more time. Let's not do something we will regret."
A new day had started and breakfast brought a gloomy atmosphere. Lando and Kenobi had both stayed at the Cerulean gym. The previous day, things evolved into a point where the group relaxed and saw the visit as just another family gathering. There were even pokemon battles for fun. Ash came out as the ultimate victor. Misty was the only one able to put up a fight, the others didn't stand a chance. In the end, her Gyarados was knocked out by Pikachu, granting Ash victory.
After a night of sleep, reality resurfaced. Daisy had enough of the gloomy atmosphere, "everyone cheer up!" She spoke of it as if it was the most vital requirement. "My wedding is in a few days. I don't want any long faces there. I expect to see smiles!"
The realization sunk in for Misty, she had been too preoccupied to worry about the wedding. "Oh no, Ash!"
Ash looked at Misty with confusion, "what's wrong? You look like you saw a ghost and I don't mean a pokemon."
"You have nothing to wear!" Misty urgently reminded Ash. "I was going to help you find the right tuxedo for the occasion, but we never got around to it." Her dress had been ready for a long time, but Ash kept procrastinating.
"Is that all?" Ash laughed. "I'll just go get one today. How hard can it be? All tuxedoes are exactly the same."
Ash was nearly melted alive by the glares of the Waterflower sisters. Daisy spoke in all seriousness, "no they're not."
Ash lifted his hands in a sign of surrender, "sorry, sorry, I meant no disrespect. I will choose carefully."
Daisy was not convinced. She looked at Misty pleadingly. "Don't worry," Misty assured, "I'll choose for him."
Daisy was visibly relieved, her worries replaced by a smile, "that's good to know." Ash pouted but didn't say anything. Daisy continued, "we should go shopping today."
Ash felt his blood run cold. Going shopping was in itself an unpleasant experience. Going shopping with Misty could be turned into a date, thus saving the experience from becoming torture. However, going shopping with all the Waterflowers was indeed torture. "Do we have to?" Ash pleaded in a small voice.
"Yes," Daisy cheerfully declared.
Ash summoned all his courage and patience, "alright." Surely Misty would reward him for being good and putting up with her sisters. Everything would be worth it in the end. His cell phone rang and he wondered if it was someone urgently calling him to be somewhere else. "It's Brock," he announced looking at the name displayed on the screen. He answered the call immediately putting Brock on speaker phone. "Hey Brock!"
"By the way, Ash put you on speaker phone," Misty specified. Though well intended, Ash sometimes forgot that it was not nice to put people on speakerphone without warning them.
A chorus of "hi," "hey," and "hello" mixed together as the table took a much more casual and light atmosphere. Introductions were mentioned where needed.
"Are you having a party without me?" Brock joked.
"Not at all. We just happened to be here at the same time so we improvised a little get together," Daisy lied.
"I'm in Cerulean City right now. Misty and her sisters are making me go shopping," Ash dramatized with exaggerated agony. "Want to endure with us?"
Brock laughed nervously, "I'd love to, but you know, you're way over there in Cerulean City and I'm way over here in Pewter City."
"Aw, that's too bad," Ash pouted, he didn't expect Brock to show up on such short notice, but that would have been good.
"It's going to be like an all day thing. Join in if you change your mind," Violet extended an invitation that made Ash pale. Shopping all day long? Not just until they found the proper tuxedo? Would it take that long to find one that was satisfactory? Kenobi and Lando shared Ash's expression while Misty sighed and summoned her patience.
"I'll think about it," Brock offered. The conversation took a turn towards the previous day's non-secret happenings.
Daisy inquired if Brock had his attire for the wedding ready, he was also invited. Brock was indeed ready. "An example to be followed," Daisy commented, while looking at Ash. Ash could only place his hand behind his head and laugh sheepishly.
They were all secretly thankful to Brock for pushing the conversation towards a more relaxed atmosphere. When they were only among those who knew of certain things, it was tempting to discuss them, even if everything had already been said. That did not help the mood. A mutual silent agreement was reached that they would try to continue living their lives as they normally would, one day at a time.
xoxox xox xoxox
A boy followed by two pokemon approached the Oak research laboratory. He glanced past the bars of the parted gates to the area beyond the brick fence. After a moment's pause he turned to his pokemon. "I know you don't like not being able to talk to me, but I can't let anyone see those collars. He patted his green backpack, "there safe here."
The Vulpix sighed, 'he'll get into more trouble without our advice,' only the Persian next to her could understand her. She considered her words again and changed them, 'then again, he might get into less trouble without your advice.'
The Persian pouted, 'what do you mean by that? I'm trying to help him; he's destined for great things.'
'Yes, I know. He comes from a mafia family but...' the Vulpix trailed into silence. 'Never mind, I feel like we've had this argument for more years than what we've lived. In the end, we always agree to disagree and put our differences aside.'
'You could always agree with me,' the Persian offered with a confident grin.
The Vulpix smiled sugary sweet, 'not happening.'
Their trainer was pouting at them. "Sure, have a conversation now that I can't understand you. I have the distinct feeling that you're talking about me." Choosing to disregard the possibility, he covered his spiky hair style with a red hat, only the brown part was visible. "Do I blend in, or do I blend in?" Without waiting for an answer he stepped on to the steps and waited. "That's odd, this escalator is broken..." He climbed the steps up to the door followed by his two pokemon. Atop the stairs in front of the door nothing happened. "Hello?"
There was still no automatic greeting, no robotic voice saying, 'welcome guest.' No prerecorded message from the owner of the house.
"Of course, I studied for this," the boy reminded himself. "Everything is low tech." He took a deep breath and yelled, "Professor Oak!" At the top of his lungs.
A few seconds later, Gary Oak opened the door. He blinked and stared at the boy before him. He was wearing light blue jeans, an indigo hoody and a red cap. He reminded him of Ash. "Yes?" Gary finally found his voice.
"Are you the renowned Professor Gary Oak?" The boy tried to put up his best act. "I'm here to be your employee."
"I'm not really looking for an employee," Gary calmly replied after having gotten over the familiarity of the unknown boy.
Time for plan B, "my poor pokemon..." he picked up his Vulpix. While the Persian's specialty was looking menacing, the Vulpix's specialty was looking cute. "I'm broke and homeless. My pokemon will starve to death!"
The Vulpix's brown eyes shone in sadness as if she was about to cry, "vulpix," she cooed gloomily.
"Well I guess I can't let that happen," Gary scratched the back of his head and looked away from the Vulpix feeling guilty. "What about your family?"
"I'm an orphan," the boy lied.
"I see," Gary found the entire situation to be suspicious, but it wasn't rare for pokemon trainers to try to become his apprentices. Gary would rather concentrate on his research then train an apprentice, but this boy got points for originality in his roundabout approach. Besides, he never said anything about training him and he could use some help taking care of the pokemon. If the boy asked for an apprenticeship later, he would deal with that at the time. "Come in, I'll hire you if you prove your skill in a pokemon battle. What's your name?"
The boy followed Gary inside, looking around as if he was in a museum. "I'm Va- I mean, um... Skye, my name is Skye." A low growl from the Persian prompted Skye to continue, "these are my best friends, Dia," he petted the Vulpix, "and Givan," he placed his hand on the Persian's back.
Gary attributed the verbal stumble to nervousness and excitement, though it was unexpected from someone with such a cocky look in his face. "Alright Skye," he would have to keep his guard up around that boy until he proved to be trustworthy. "We'll have a pokemon battle, one on one. If you're going to work here, you'll have to win."
Skye looked confident, "I will win," he stated with absolute certainty.
"We'll see about that," Gary had no intentions of making things easy. Gary and Skye stepped outside, sufficiently far from the structure so that it would not be damaged if the battle became intense. Gary took a pokeball out of his white lab coat pocket, "go Blastoise!"
The confident grin on Skye's face never faded, "Givan, I choose you!" Givan stepped forward with eagerness. He showed his sharp claws hissing menacingly. He was larger than an average Persian and definitely more threatening. His toned muscles tensed beneath his smooth fur and his tail was upright as he prepared to attack.
"Your Persian is-" Gary's observation was cut short when Givan lunged for Blastoise with his sharp claws outstretched, aiming for the throat. "Blastoise!" The large water pokemon quickly retreated into his shell.
Givan landed on his shell slashing at the opening where Blastoise's head was hiding. "Vulpix!" Dia stood at the sidelines alongside Skye. She sounded more as if she was scolding Givan rather than cheering for him.
"Rapid spin!" Alerted by Gary's command, Givan jumped off Blastoise as he began to spin. He dodged the spinning shell again as the Blastoise relentlessly attacked.
Blastoise increased his speed as Givan dashed to the other side of the field. Givan jumped, at the same time Blastoise came to a halt. He had to avoid leaving the designated battle area and colliding with Gary, the turn was too sharp to make. Givan was already glowing surrounded by sparks when he landed on Blastoise. The brightness turned blinding as Givan released a powerful thunderbolt. When the light faded, Blastoise was unconscious.
"It can't be!" Gary was shocked. "Blastoise return, thanks for trying." The researcher looked at the Persian with curiosity. "His strength is obvious just by looking at him. But for him to fight so accurately without commands. What kind of training regimen do you have for your pokemon?"
"They do whatever they want," Skye began to reply, but was quick to change it. "What I mean is I trained them very well so it's possible for them to do what they want. They want to win!" Dia was saying something, but Skye couldn't really understand her.
"I would like to study Givan," Gary harmlessly extended his hand to the Persian in a friendly gesture. Givan hissed baring his claws, which caused Gary to pull his hand back. "He's strong, but not very friendly."
"Givan doesn't let anyone pet him," Skye confessed, "I can give him a friendly pat on the back, but that's it." He did so, congratulating his pokemon on winning. "I've always thought that Givan and Dia were special. There's something about them. I didn't even catch them, they came to me and stay of their own free will."
"Now I really want to study them," Gary looked at the pokemon with curiosity. Givan still looked fierce; there was an intimidating aura around him. Dia was all the opposite, she looked sweet, nice and harmless. "Are you friendlier than Givan?" Gary gently petted Dia who smiled in response. Givan's glare intensified and Gary thought it wise not to pet Dia too much. It seemed Givan was protective of her, "his mate?"
"I guess so," Skye replied, "they do get cuddly from time to time when they think I'm not looking." Givan hissed while Dia giggled, "alright, alright, don't get all temperamental."
"As promised, I'll hire you, but working here won't be easy. You'll have a lot of chores to keep up with," Gary warned.
Skye nodded, he would probably be doing things that were done by machines where he came from. It was all part of the mission; he would endure it and fulfill his purpose. He had stopped at the Pallet House on the way to see Professor Oak. Delia wasn't there. She was probably in the safety of Team Rocket, where no one could steal her away. When she returned to Pallet Town, she would be more exposed to a kidnap attempt.
xoxox xox xoxox
Daisy, Lando, Violet, Kenobi, Misty, Ash and Pikachu went from one store to another trying to find all the last minute things they supposedly needed for the wedding. Things that were not real necessities, but they decided they wanted. Lily had opted to stay at the gym all day, claiming she was tired. In truth she was feeling lonely in a crowd. The pain of her relatively recent heartbreak had resurfaced.
She flipped through the channels on the living room TV, looking for something to watch. A sitcom about robotic pokemon who ran a pizza parlor and were secretly superheroes was about to end. A news bulletin came on during the space between shows. Lily wasn't really paying attention to it. They were talking about Tempest and Bollux's trial. The news made no mention about Solo, who had escaped due to some carelessness of the police. The police's reputation had been damaged enough. They didn't need any more incompetence coming to light.
To keep quiet about Solo would make it harder to catch him, since no one who wanted to contribute a clue could do so. Yet the price to pay for possible clues contributed by the general public was too high. They would have to remain ignorant, believing the captives of the law to be the only culprits. Solo would remain anonymous. The police would search for him in secret.
Lily changed the channel as her cell phone rang. She put down the remote control next to her on the couch after lowering the TV's volume. Two men with big muscles and spiky hair fought each other on the screen in a flurry of special effects. "Hello?" Lily didn't recognize the number.
"Lily, it's me," the male voice was familiar and she recognized it right away.
"Caedus!" Lily growled in an acid tone. "You called me to say you like couldn't be with me anymore, then you disappear and like never called again. I tried to find you, but it was like the very earth swallowed you. Now you suddenly call like nothing's happened?"
When he broke up with her, he hung up so fast that he didn't even give her time to say anything. Afterwards he blocked her number and disappeared. He had gotten a new phone since then, a lot had happened. "I'm sorry; I was only trying to protect you."
"From what?" Lily had quite a few things to say to Caedus and none of them were nice.
"From Tempest, they had a grudge against me. They were looking for me. I couldn't get you involved," Caedus sounded tragic. "They're behind bars now so I can finally tell you."
"Do you expect me to believe that?" The tale sounded too convenient and exaggerated to be true. Albeit with all the surprises that had been popping up, Lily wondered if it was really true.
"I just wanted you to know," Caedus insisted solemnly. "I don't expect you to forgive me. In fact, you have the right to hate me. I just want you to understand the truth. I didn't want to get you involved, I had no choice. Please, let me explain in person. I'm right in front of the gym."
Lily was feeling angry and hurt, but she decided to at least listen to what Caedus had to say. She hung up on him without a word and paced around uncertain before finally opening the door. Caedus stood there looking apologetic with a dozen roses in one hand and a wrapped gift box in the other. "Come in, I'll hear you out, but that's all." Lily stood aside indicating for him to enter, then closed the door when he did. She headed back to the living room with Caedus following.
They sat down on the couch and Lily clicked the TV off. Caedus insisted that she accepted his gifts, "please, take this as an apology, even if I know it's not enough to say I'm sorry."
Wordlessly Lily took the gifts, setting them in a pile on her lap. Caedus was insisting with his eyes that she opened the box, he kept looking at it. "Start explaining," Lily set the roses aside and fingered the wrapping paper on the box. It had pictures of pink and blue bubbles.
Satisfied that Lily was slowly opening her gift, Caedus spoke, "I suppose the best way to describe it is that I was in the wrong place at the wrong time," his words came out slowly and solemnly.
Lily pulled the shiny wrapping paper off the gift to find a box of chocolates. Admittedly, she really needed some sugar in her system after receiving such an unexpected visit. She opened the box and looked at Caedus with a neutral expression, "go on," she urged, before putting a chocolate in her mouth.
"I was walking down the street minding my own business. Then I heard someone yell in a dark alley near by," Caedus spoke slowly and sadly. "I didn't think about it properly before rushing to see what it was. Someone was being attacked. It was a girl just barely old enough to be a pokemon trainer. I couldn't abandon the poor kid," he paused looking at Lily; his gray eyes were full of sadness. "I managed to save her and took her to the Pokemon Center. The girl said she would stay there and report the incident to the police. Nurse Joy said she would take care of her."
"That's what started it all," Caedus continued. "The girl was the daughter of someone important. They really needed to kidnap her. I messed up their plans and apparently that was more significant to them that I imagined. Lily, they were hunting me down. If they saw us together, they would have gone after you too. I was only trying to protect you because I love you."
Lily listened to Caedus' story. She felt tired, very sleepy. She leaned back on the couch and rested her eyes. His voice was so soothing. She didn't want to fall asleep, that would be so rude. She couldn't help it, she couldn't hold on to her consciousness. Her awareness slipped away.
He ran his fingers through his bright yellow hair. "You're so gullible," he grinned evilly. "Well, we'd best be on our way," Caedus, alias Solo, picked up the unconscious Lily and headed out of the gym.
To be Continued
Disclaimer, I don't own Pokemon. The robotic pokemon with the pizza parlor are a parody of the Samurai Pizza Cats. The other show was Dragon Ball Z. Enjoy the cliffhanger(s)! :D (Can you imagine the evil grin I have right now?)