The Ghost Pokémon Master!
"Oh, Silus! Let's go shopping!" she shouted excitingly.
Silus frowned, "You're joking, right? I thought we came here to train?" he said, not amused.
"Shopping can be training." Lyra coaxed.
"What world are you living in?" Silus grunted, "Listen, shop all you want. I'm heading to the cemetary to train."
Obviously content with Silus' responce, Lyra bolted for the PokéMart, leaving Silus alone on the streets.
"Women.." he muttered, slowly beginning to walk towards his destination.
Silus arrived at the spot in the woods, just outside Mimosa City. The cemetary was surrounded by an old, rusty gate which had vines growing on them. The gate screeched as it opened and shut, making an eerie echo that resounded amongst the tombstones.
"Who goes there?" came the voice of an old man from a nearby cottage.
"I'm Silus, a Pokémon Trainer." Silus responded.
The man appeared at the doorway to the cottage and stepped down onto the mossy earth.
"A trainer, you say? Come to pay your respects to the resting spirits here?" the man asked.
"Yes, I've come here for that, but I've also come to find the Ghost Pokémon Master. Do you know him?" Silus asked, stepping closer to the man.
"Know him?" the man chuckled. "I am him!"
Silus' eyes widened and he immediately bowed respectfully, "My appoligies, sir. I did not know."
"Such respect from one so young. This brings warmth to my heart. Tell me, son, why have you come in search of me?" he asked.
Silus rose, "My cousin came here to train with you when he was in training to become a Gym Leader. I was hoping you'd help me train as well." he explained.
The old man stroked his beard, "I see. Very few people come here to request that." he admitted. "Most people come to examine the rumors of the legendary Darkrai."
"I'm merely here to better myself as a trainer." Silus replied honestly.
The man smiled at this, "I believe you. Very well, I will admit you for training....if you are found worthy, that is."
"Worthy, sir?" Silus asked confused.
"Follow me." he repiled, and began to walk off into the misty depths of the graveyard.
The Test of Darkrai
After what seemed like hours of walking, Silus finally cleared the mist and arrived at a shrine where the old man awaited him. It only took Silus a moment to realize where he was; a cliff on the edge of Mt. Hora.
"How did we-?" Silus started, but was cut off.
"Don't bother with the trifles, boy. You will know in due time." the old man responded. "This is the shrine of Darkrai, the protector of Mimosa City. Despite its assosiation with ghosts, Darkrai is a Dark-type Pokémon that frequents this mountain and has since ancient times."
"Does this have something to do with me being 'worthy'?" Silus asked, starting to become impatient.
The old man chuckled, "Yes, just listen. As you know, legendary Pokémon, like Darkrai, are few and far between. Some researchers believe them to be immortals that do not breed, but I know different. The Darkrai that visits here not only comes to protect the cemetary, but also to have its young."
"Its young?!" Silus shouted.
The old man nodded, "Yes. It happens only on rare occasions. Most of its children leave to go to other regions. For example, the Darkrai of Sinnoh myth is said to be an offspring of this Darkrai. And yet, others choose trainers to train them. A Champion of Sinnoh, named Tobias, once came here and befriended a Darkrai. Your cousin was another such trainer, but he felt that he couldn't provide for Darkrai, and so he sent it back to his home region of Johto where it could live in harmony."
"Are there others who have befriended Darkrai?" Silus asked, now competely interested.
"Only one. That is me. As I said, this is a very rare event. You see the Darkrai that now protects Mimosa is the descendant of a long line of Darkrai that have protected it in the centries since Mimosa was established. I was but a young lad when the current Darkrai was born, and I befriended it." the old man explained. "However, that is enough explaining. Its time for you to take the test."
"What...test, exactly?" Silus asked.
"Weren't you listening? The only people I train are those that befriend a Darkrai. So far, that's been only two people other than me; your cousin, and Tobias. You must be chosen by Darkrai to train with me." the old man answered.
Silus fell to his knees, "Chosen...by the legendary Pokémon...?!" he stuttered.
"Yes. Remain here overnight. I will return at dawn to check on you." the old man said, and then, was gone.
Nightmare on Mt. Hora
It seemed like forever before night finally fell over Mt. Hora. Silus fed his Pokémon and put them to bed in their Pokéballs. He estimated that it must've been around midnight before he could finally stay awake no more, and fell asleep.
It wasn't long before vicious nightmares of Pokémon and human murders alike were plauging his young mind. Visions of Team Rocket killing his Pokémon, of his cousin, Ryan, dying at the hands of a shady individual, and of a strange Pokémon that he could not make out. Throughout this, he could not seem to wake himself no matter how hard he tried.
"Why do you struggle, boy?" came a ghastly voice.
"Let me out!" Silus screamed.
"I cannot!" the creature answered.
Now Silus could "see" the creature; mentally, anyways. It looked exactly like the creature in Professor Changi's research books.
"I can sense your heart. You love Pokémon, but how do I know you won't turn out like Team Rocket? A brutal murderer of Pokémon?!" Darkrai shreaked.
"I could never do that!" Silus shouted back at it.
"Oh? If that is true, then answer me this, and answer it wisely; what are Pokémon to you?" the legendary Pokémon asked.
Silus's dream shifted to the four Pokémon he now carried with him. Though their time together had only just begun, the team had already experienced many victories, some defeats, and even made new friends in Jason Reid and Lyra. Still, he had never had a defining moment with them that told him who they were to him. Still, his heart answered what his experience could not.
"Since I was young, I've been surrounded by Pokémon. My family has many of them as pets, my cousin is a Gym Leader and a great inspiration to me. And throughout my short journey as a trainer, I have made many invaluable friendships with the Pokémon I've caught. They're always with me. They help me achieve my goals, and I help them achieve theirs. We eat, sleep, and train together. So...in some ways..Pokémon are like family to me." Silus responded.
Darkrai let out what could only be described as a sigh of relief, "I can tell that you are undoubtably telling the truth. Very well, I can trust you. Awake and meet my child. It is still young, only being a few weeks old, and it has much to learn about the world. I hope that one day, legendary Pokémon can intermingle with humans again without having to appear so scarce, but until that day comes, my child needs to know that there are humans out there whom we legendary Pokémon can trust." it told him.
With that Darkrai faded, and Silus awoke.
The Child of Darkrai
Silus shot straight up from his dreams, and frantically looked around. Hovering just above him was a Darkrai, much smaller than the one in his dream. It darted directly to him and looked in his eyes with its two large blue eyes, and then cocked its head as if studying him. It then nudged his arm and tugged at his shirt as if trying to get him to play.
"This little guy sure is playful. Then again, its only a few weeks old. I don't know why, but legendary Pokémon always seem to be serious. This one...seems just like any other Pokémon." Silus thought to himself.
Silus patted Darkrai on the head and then gave in to its pleads, getting up and chasing it around the shrine. He played with it for about an hour, before the sun started coming up over the horizon and the old man returned from the cemetary.
"Ah!" exclaimed the old man upon seeing the small Darkrai, "You're much smaller than my friend Darkrai. So, you must be its latest offspring."
He then looked down at Silus, who was down on one knee, panting from playing with Darkrai. A smile was on his face regardless of his fatigue.
"And from the looks of it," the old timer continued, "You two seem to be getting along and that would mean you've passed the test. Very well then, I will train you."
Silus grinned and wiped the sweat from his brow. Getting to his feet, he began to follow the old man for the training grounds.
As they take off with the rising sun, a new leg in Silus's adventure has only just begun!
To be continued...