Gible, Gabite, Garchomp!
As our heroes make their way towards Port Kardinal, for the Tour de Kardinal Pokémon Contest, they've stopped for a small lunch picnic on the breezy Route 13.
"This was a great place to stop." Nathan noted, finally sitting down on the picnic blanket after cooking the last of the meal. "The weather here couldn't get any better."
"Its definitely better than the weather in Safflower City." Clair groaned, clearly happy to be out of the snowy weather.
"Where's Silus?" Nathan asked after shoveling down more stew.
"Where do you think?" Clair responded. "He's still over that hill, training his Pokémon."
"All that guy ever thinks about are his Gym battles..." Nathan muttered, somewhat in a groan.
"Aren't you supposed to be on a journey too?" Clair snapped back. "You should try training sometime. It'd pass the time quicker."
"You humans make little sense to me..." Mewtwo, still in his human form, muttered to himself, silently eating his stew.
Meanwhile, just over the hill, Silus landed on his butt, sweat dripping from every part of his face, while his six Pokémon collapsed around him, fatigued from a grueling training session that was coming to a close. Despite his apparent weariness, Silus wore a confident grin on his face — something that was becoming more and more of a trademark of his.
"Good work today, you guys." he finally said, wiping the sweat from his brow. "If we keep at it, the next Gym won't make us break a sweat! Now, let's go get some grub!"
Just as he finished saying this, a young woman, appearing in her mid-twenties, with curly, fiery red hair, emerged from the nearby thicket.
"You look beat." she comment, placing a hand on her hip and grinning.
"Who're you?" Silus asked, curious.
"I'm Selene, the Gym Leader of Watsonia City. I'm on my way to the Tour de Kardinal in Port Kardinal. And you would be?" Selene replied.
"Silus!" he replied, leaping to his feet at the sound of the term "Gym Leader". "Me and my group are also headed towards the Tour de Kardinal. I'm a trainer hoping to beat all the Gyms and enter the Hora League."
"Well, why don't you take me to this group of yours and we can get better acquainted." Selene said, gesturing for Silus to lead the way.
Selene, the Dark-type Master!
"So, you said you're a Gym Leader?" Nathan asked, several minutes later, as the group was again reunited at their camp.
"That's correct!" Selene replied, smirking smugly and wagging her index finger. "The Gym Leader of Watsonia City, to be exact."
"Watsonia... City... hmmm." Silus thought aloud. "That's quite a ways away from here. You must really think this Pokémon Contest is worth it."
"Worth it?!" Selene and Clair shouted in unison.
"I'll have you know," Selene continued. "That this Contest is being hosted by none other than the legendary Pokémon Coordinator, Wallace!"
"What's so great about him?" Nathan snapped, his disgust for Contests showing clearly now.
"You really don't know who Wallace is?!" Selene gasped in shock.
"Sounds like a real fruit cake, if you ask me." Silus quipped, drawing a mischievous snicker from Nathan.
The joke was unwelcome by Clair and Selene, who promptly gave him a comedic kick to the face, in unison, sending him flying off the rock he was seated upon and into the grass below, much to the amusement of his onlooking Pokémon.
"Wallace is only the greatest Contest Master in the known world!" Clair snapped, angrily putting her hands on her hips.
"Didn't you say you were beating the Pokémon Gyms, Silus?" Selene asked, her anger near the levels of Clair. "Well then, you should know who Wallace is! He's not only a Coordinator, ya know?! He's also the Pokémon League Champion of the Hoenn region!"
"Who lets a fruitcake like that be Champion?" it was Nathan's turn to be sarcastic.
The response to his comment was equally comical, as Clair grabbed him by his shirt, hauling him over her head and tossing him in the opposite direction, causing Silus' Pokémon to scatter to avoid being hit in the process.
"Maybe I should travel with you to the Contest." Clair angrily joked with Selene, earning her an approving nod from the Gym Leader.
Suddenly, a look of sadistic glee crossed over Selene's face, "Hey Silus, why don't you and I have a battle?" she suggested.
"All of a sudden?" Silus asked, picking himself up after the assault.
"You are challenging Gym Leaders, aren't you?" Selene mocked. "You beat me in a one-on-one, and I'll give you the Gym Badge here and now. If you loose, I'll force you to wear a Wallace T-shirt around until the Tour de Kardinal is over."
"You're on!" Silus shouted excitedly.
"I guess I'll ref this battle." Clair declared, standing between Selene and Silus, who were now facing each other.
"Very well." Selene grinned coyly. "Since I'm the challenger, I'll pick first! Come forth, Gible!"
"Gible?" Silus questioned aloud, upon seeing the tiny Dragon Pokémon.
"Gible, the Land Shark Pokémon." his new Pokédex reported, after pulling it out. "Gible nests in horizontal holes warmed by geothermal heat. Foes who get too close can expect to be pounced on and bitten."
"But, Gible is a Dragon-type! I thought my cousin, Ryan, was the Dragon specialist in Hora's eight Gyms?!" Silus blurted out.
"He is!" Selene quipped. "Gible is the only non-Dark-type Pokémon on my team. It gets along well with my Tyranitar."
"In that case," Silus said, grabbing a Poké Ball of his own. "I chose Deino!"
Selene's eyes suddenly sparkled, "You have a Deino?!"
"Uh, yeah... I do." Silus replied, somewhat taken aback by Selene's change in persona.
"Deino is a Dark-type Pokémon with Dragon-type attributes. What a wonderful little Pokémon!" Selene exclaimed. "But I won't lose to it! Gible, use Sand Tomb!"
"Deino, counter that with DragonBreath!" Silus countered.
However, it was already too late. The sand created by Gible's Sand Tomb enshrouded Deino, preventing it from moving or launching its own attack. It cried out, clearly confused by this development.
"Nice move." Nathan noted. "Not only does Sand Tomb prevent a Pokémon from moving, it also prevents Silus from recalling Deino."
"Do it, Gible!" Selene declared. "Use Dragon Pulse!"
Gible gathered a familiar ball of green energy, focusing it in front of its mouth before launching it at the trapped Deino. The blast hit its mark directly, causing a sizable explosion of sand and debris, revealing a completely unconscious Deino once the smoke and debris had cleared.
"What?!" Silus shrieked in surprise.
"What a powerful Gible!" Nathan exclaimed. "It beat Deino in one hit!"
"Return, Deino!" Silus commanded, recalling it back into its Poké Ball. "You did your best. Take a nice nap."
Trade: Dragon for Dragon
Minutes later, Selene proudly stood aside a visibly annoyed Silus, who was now wearing his penance for losing the battle. A plain white T-shirt decorated with a large visage of Wallace's face. Nathan, who could now see the T-shirt himself seemed a visibly distressed as Silus, while Clair and Selene nodded in mock approval.
"Now you'll have to wear that until the end of the Tour!" Selene declared triumphantly. "So don't forget!"
"I won't let him." Clair snickered.
"Still, I gotta admit." Silus finally spoke, though his tone suggested that he wasn't quite over the ordeal just yet. "That Gible of yours is pretty impressive."
"You think so?" Selene replied, perking up with interest.
"Yeah. I've never seen a Pokémon that could take Deino out so quickly like that. It was really a spectacle." Silus explained.
"Then how about a trade?"
Suddenly, three heads snapped to attention. Silus had not expected that kind of offer. Clearly, Nathan and Clair hadn't expected it either, judging from the look on each of their faces.
"A trade?" Silus finally repeated, unsure of what he had heard.
"Yes." Selene confirmed. "A trade. Your Deino for my Gible."
"Why would you want to trade away your Gible?" Nathan interjected, clearly as confused as Silus.
"Well, like Silus said, Deino is a Dark-type. My specialty. Furthermore, this Gible needs to get out a bit more. Perhaps it would be better off with Silus." Selene explained.
"Alright." Silus replied, stunning Nathan and Clair. "I'll do it."
"Are you sure about this Silus?" Clair, ever the voice of reason, chimed in.
"Yeah. Deino has been rather unpredictable since I captured him. He'd be better off with a more experienced Trainer. I'll take care of Gible in the meantime." Silus explained, taking out Deino's Poké Ball once more.
The trade went smoothly. Both trainer's exchanged Poké Balls and then called out their new Pokémon for introductions all around. Neither Deino nor Gible seemed especially distressed by the change of environments. Gible seemed ever its cheerful self and Deino expressed its usual indifference.
"Selene, promise me you'll take good care of Gible." Silus eventually spoke up as the sun began to set.
Selene offered a smile. The first genuine smile from her all day. "Of course." she replied. "The same goes for you and Gible. Though, I'm pretty sure she's found a good new home."
And so, with new Pokémon in tow and a new friend made, Silus and co. set out once more for Port Kardinal, knowing they had another new friend to look forward to reuniting with...