The Legend Begins
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The Pokémon Research Institute
"So, this is Phlox Town ?" Misty looked around at the town they'd arrived in. Since the Dark Crag wasn't too far behind, this town was surrounded by a few rocky structures, almost like a protective shell. Floods would have a difficult time impacting a town like Phlox.
"Chu...?" Pichu was looking surprised. Perhaps it didn't like being in a city surrounding by rocks. Jason smiled brightly. "I'm just glad we passed through the Dark Crag. Now, let's go find a Pokémon Center, I want to check on Butterfree."
"I'm sure the Professor is taking good care of it, why should you rush into checking on it?" Ivory asked curious as they walked into the Pokémon Center. "Give Butterfree a chance to get used to it's new surroundings."
Jason, naturally, ignored this. "Nurse Joy, could you let me use from the video phone?"
"Of course." She replied, smiling. "It's over there, in the corner." She gestured to a video phone sitting in the corner, and Jason walked over to it, taking a seat and picking up the reciever. Misty and Ivory,naturally, followed him. He dialed a number and Professor Changi's face appeared on the screen.
"Jason!" He smiled. "How are you doing?"
"I'm doing great, Professor!" Jason trilled. "I have two badges, and one ri-" Ivory and Misty then shoved their faces next to his, interrupting him in the middle of his sentence. "Hello Professor!" They cried in unison. "Nice to meet you! It's me!" Misty and Ivory spoke those lines respectively.
"Oh, Ivory!" Professor Changi was happy to see hid old charge. "Nice to see you again, what has it been, two years?"
"It has." She smiled brightly. "Glad to see you're doing well."
The Professor looked over at the red-head. "And you must be Misty, I've heard about you. Jason's mother is curious, are you keeping him in line?"
Misty shot off a small smirk. "Of course. Jason can't even get a drink of water without me knowing."
Jason growled and pushed both girls out of the way of the screen. "Can we please save this little reunion for sometime else?" Professor, I was just calling in to see how my Butterfree was doing."
"Oh, yes, your recent acquisition!" The Professor whistled, and Butterfree flapped into view, and was absolutely delighted to see it's trainer. "Free!!!!" It trilled, spiralling in the air and scattering a bit of powder from it's wings. Jason grinned, happy to see it was doing well. "Alright. Butterfree, hang tight, okay? I'll definitely send for you soon!"
"Professor, give my best to Mom." Jason told him, and Changi agreed and they hung up.
"I told you Butterfree was doing fine." Ivory chided Jason, poking his forehead. He winced, and waved her hand off. "It's only natural for a trainer to be concerned about their Pokémon, right?"
"Of course it is." Nurse Joy interrupted. "But please, no arguing in the Pokémon Center."
"Yes ma'am." They all agreed in unison, however, quickly left the Center. "So, while we're here, why not look around?" Misty suggested. "It's a small town, but there should be some sights."
"How about the Pokémon Research Institute?" Jason suggested, having been looking in his Pokégear for information about the city."
"A research facility?" Misty chuckled. "Didn't expect you to be the type to care about knowledge."
"I don't." Jason replied flatly. "It just seems interesting, and looking at this town, it's either we head there, or kick rocks."
"We may as well check it out, since we're here." Ivory agreed. "C'mon!" They walked through the town, headed to what was pretty much the center of the town, confronted by a large building and a moderately sized building. Jason looked at them both. "It seems the really large one is the department store-"
"Department store!?" Misty squealed. "Let's go in, I want to get outfits and dolls and-" Jason cut her off, "and this one is the research facility." The building as a glistening steel black, and certainly gave off an ominous, imposing feeling. "Shall we?" He gripped the doorknob, and opened it...only for a girl to run right into him, carrying a great load of supplies that impaired her balance and ability to see in front of her. The impact threw them both off balance, knocking them to the ground.
"Ow, dammit." Jason hissed as he hit the concrete. However, he caught up, and helped up the young girl, who muttered an embarrased thanks as she scrambled to pick up the books. Now that Jason got a look at her, she wasn't much older than he was, and had light blue hair, matching eyes, and large red glasses, as a well as a lab coat. He'd assume she worked here.
"I'm sorry for what just happened." He said, helping her pick up the books. "I'm Jason, and we're here to visit the Research Institute. Who are you?"
The girl looked up at him, smiling now that the embarrasment was over. "My name is Nema."
"I'm Jason Reid, from Eden Town."
"Nice to meet you, I'm Iris."
Nema was struggling to hold the books she had, and Jason took about half of them from her. "Here, I'll help. Where were you taking these?"
"Just to the storage area around the side of the building." She replied. "I'll show you." She led them around the building to a smaller building, like a well-built shack. "Here, reach into my pocket, there's a key that can open this door." Misty obliged, reaching into her pocket and unlocked the door, letting Jason and Nema take the books into the storage area.
"So, what are you here for anyway?" Nema asked as they headed back to the main building.
"We decided, since we're in the city, we'll check out the Institute." Ivory told her as they entered the Research Institutebehind Nema. "There's not much else interesting in Phlox Town that doesn't involve Misty blowing all ourr money."
"Hey!" The red-head snapped at Ivory.
Nema giggled. "I can see you all are close friends. Just give me a second, I'll go fetch the Professor."
Jason looked around the lab as they waited, taking in everything. To his surprise, he saw a room concealed behind glass, and within it were dozens of Pokémon Eggs. "Hey Misty, Ivory, come take a look at this!"
"Huh? What's got you so excited?" Misty walked over to him, craning her neck over Jason's shoulder. "Pokémon Eggs!" Misty squealed. "And look at the Chansey! Awww, Jason, it's a nursery!"
"I've never seen so many in one place..." Ivory looked at them in awe. "This place..."
"...is dedicated to the research of Pokémon Breeding and Egg Groups." A sharp female voice caught their attention, and they turned to see a woman in a white labcoat who was holding an ice pack near her eye. "I would appreciate if it you would avoid gawking at research subjects."
Scramble in the Institute!
"Research of Pokémon Breeding and Egg Groups?" Jason repeated, confused. "What...I don't get it, what do you mean?"
The woman sighed. "It appears I'm dealing with idiots. Did you not attend Trainer School at all?"
"Professor, you don't have to insult them like that..." Nema sounded a bit upset. "They are here out of curiousity, so you could take this moment to educate them."
"Of course, I shall educate the uncultured." The woman sounded as if she would rather be doing anything else. "But first, introductions. My name is Professor Huon, I am the head researcher at this Institute. I believe you've met my temporary assistant, Nema."
"I'm Jason Reid." The boy introduced himself hesitantly. This woman could use some friends, she seemed bitter.
"My name is Misty, I come from Cerulean City." The orange-haired girl followed him, eyeing this woman with apprehension.
"My name is Ivory, I enjoy travelling with Pokémon!" Ivory chirped, apparently unaware that Huon was rather a jerk.
"Alright, now that we've gotten such petty things out of the way, let's get down to business." Huon yawned. "I'm a very busy woman and I haven't got all day."
"If you don't want to tell us, just go away..." Jason grumbled mentally as the woman walked over to the glass-window they had just been looking at only recently.
"Are you at least aware of what Pokémon Eggs are?" The Professor asked, deciding to start with basics first.
"Of course!" Jason held up one of his Poké Balls eagerly. "My Krabby only recently hatched from it's own egg!"
"Good, your head isn't totally empty." The woman waved this off. "I won't need to start from square one." She sighed. "I have a feeling I am going to make a lot of mothers very unhappy, but, let me start by explaining that many living creatures produce offspring through something called se-"
"No no no!" Jason cut her off. "I've already had this discussion, I know where it's going, you can skip this part!"
"Uncultured and childish?" Huon chuckled, looking at Jason with something resembling mockery. "Alright boy, I'll speak as G-rated as I can for you. "Breeding" is a general term used for non-human creatures during the times they mate to produce young. What makes Pokémon breeding so interesting — as opposed to human mating, which consenting adults can watch on the internet and probably several TV channels — is that it is almost never seen by humans — again, unlike human mating."
"What are you telling this kid?!" Misty hissed angrily. "He's only 10!"
"Oh shove off, he'll have learned about this at some point." Huon snapped waspishly, and then continued as if Misty had not spoken. "However, while mating is rarely seen, several Pokémon courtship rituals are well-known to researchers, and some of them are believed to lead to, or occur while breeding. Male Blaziken, for example, make vocalizations that can be heard for miles around. If a female comes, both begin to fight to test the others stamina. This culminates with both Pokemon jumping in midair to meet with a Blaze Kick or Sky Uppercut, and then finishes with them grabbing each other and spinning in midair downwards. The mating dive is often done while on fire."
Jason immediately scrambled for his Pokédex, quick to check on this newly mentioned Pokémon. "Let's see if Dexter's got anything on that..." He flipped the device open, and pressed a few buttons.
"Blaziken, the Blaze Pokémon, and the final stage of the Torchic evolution line." The device chirped. "They fight using martial arts in tandem with fire moves, and can easily clear a 15-story building with it's great lower body strength."
"Oh, a Pokédex?" Huon looked at it curiously. "I haven't seen one of those in a long time."
"I got it from Professor Changi when I began my journey." Jason explained quickly.
"Oh, I see." Huon sounded a bit disappointed. "And here I thought you knew...nevermind. Back on track, different Pokémon have different breeding rituals and mating methods, though the latter is often purely conjecture. We have received several statements that Gardevoir and Gallade, for example, breed similarly to humans. The credibility of such a statement is still debated by scientists due to the nature of the witnesses, however, Gardevoir and Gallade do express many other traits similar to humans, such as forming empathetic bonds with their mates, and mating for life, as well as raising a child until it leaves to seek it's own mate, and therefore, such statements may hold water."
Once again, Jason consulted his Pokédex for information on the Pokémon Huon had just mentioned.
"Gardevoir, the Embrace Pokémon, and one of the final stages of the Ralts' evolutionary line. Living on the edges of forests near clearings, they will approach a human or Pokémon emitting positive emotions."
"Gallade, the Blade Pokémon, and one of the final stages of the Ralts' evolutionary line. Gallade extends its elbows as if they were swords, and when protecting someone, it fights fiercely."
"Would you believe there was a time where we had to consult these low-tech, high capacity storage devices referred to as "books" when we needed to get information?" Huon snarked. "Oh this generation and your technology..."
"You still haven't explain Egg Groups." Ivory pointed out before either Jason or Misty could snap back at Huon. "While we have a basic understanding of breeding — it's how the next generation is created — what are Egg Groups?"
"Oh, but to mention one is to mention the other." Huon seemed a bit enthused on this part; did she like explaining this more than she was letting on? "Egg groups are categories which determine which Pokémon are able to interbreed. Similarly to types, a Pokémon can belong to one or two Egg groups, and can only breed across these groups."
"Okay, I think I'm following." Jason nodded, and Huon apparently took this as a cue to continue. "Naturally, breeding and Egg Groups are terms that go hand-in-hand, Pokémon can only breed within certain Egg Groups, however, the most fascinating are Pokémon that do not seem to breed at all."
"Don't breed at all?" Misty looked confused. "How can a species continue that way?"
"Well, I don't mean it literally." Huon waved the girl off. "I mean certain Pokémon that refuse to breed within captivity situations. Many of these are what you would consider "legendary Pokémon". Several years back, a few researchers got their hands on a Lugia pair. A rare find as this was, because it already confirmed the existence of multiple members of this species, they seemed to hold none of the interest in breeding within captivity that other Pokémon show. However, infant Lugia have been sighted many times over the years, which confirms they do breed, and simply prefer privacy."
"Lugia...?" Jason frowned, and once again he was compelled to take out his Pokédex. He quickly pressed a few of the buttons and the device opened to it's screen, revealing a large, majestic white Pokémon that was draconian in appearance. Something about it was registering in his brain, and Dexter began to recite it's knowledge of the Pokémon for him.
"Lugia, the Diving Pokémon. A legendary Pokémon regarded as the Water's Great Guardian, Lugia are believed to be tied to all the waters of the world, often regarded as deity. One known myth holds that Lugia, displeased with mankind’s increasingly corrupt and hedonistic nature, took to the skies and flapped its wings with such force that the entire world was covered in a vast hurricane and biblical floodwaters for forty days and forty nights."
"Oho. Interested in Lugia, are we?"
"Well..." Jason frowned. "It just seems so...familiar."
"Lugia really is a fascinating Pokémon." Huon said animatedly. "I wouldn't be surprised if you'd heard of it somewhere, even someone as uneducated as yourself." She walked over to a desk, and pulled out a what appeared to be a scroll that had an ancient depiction of Lugia. "Even amongst breeding researchers, Lugia is an object of fascination as it's one of the few legendaries whose young we've seen. It is known by many names and titles across the world—the Great Dragon, the Guardian of the Sea, the Leviathan, Singer in Darkness, He of the Silver Wings, Soulstorm, the Fulcrum, the White Wanderer, the Living Moonlight and The Titan of the Abyss, to name but a few, and-"
"I've seen it in my dreams." Jason said blankly, and this immediately shut up Huon, and everyone's eyes turned to the boy now.
"You've what?" Huon laughed. "Don't lie kid, how can you have seen Lugia in your dreams?"
"I know I have!" Jason insisted. "Not just once! Several times! When I go to sleep, I have repeated dream of falling from high altitudes into the ocean, sinking into the depths. And I always meet a shadowy figure that looks just like that!" He gestured wildly to her rendition of Lugia. "And there's a melody. Always a melodic voice. Like it's calling out to me, and me alone."
"Jason...." Misty was a bit disturbed to see how worked up Jason over this, he seemed desperate to make the woman know he was telling the truth.
Huon could tell from Jason's words, and the way he spoke that he wasn't lying. "I see...Lugia in your dreams..." She frowned. "This is a bit beyond the scope of my own research, however, I know someone who may actually be able to help you here. He's a colleague of mine, and serves as an example of researchers everywhere. Let's give him a call."