Chapter 30: Infiltrating the Tower
Fan Fiction inspired by Pokemon
Rating: Young Adult
The four gym leaders and the other trainers departed from Mistralton City airport as soon as it was time to commence Operation: Ginkgo Leaf. It was a fitting name, considering that I, Prof. Ginkgo, would be the one to ultimately carry out the mission. With Vileplume at my side and all my pokéballs around my waste, I charged from the surface as the trainers helped clear the way.
Aizawa’s clients had already lined up around the base with their collared pokémon, setting up a blockade to keep us from getting in. There must have been at least fifty of them alone. Elesa’s and Burgh’s flanks made up about eight or nine trainers apiece, but they had full confidence we could all break in. I was in Elesa’s flank along with Amy.
“Alright everyone, let the show begin!” said Elesa.
Elesa released her Zebstrika and Eelektrik. The other trainers released their partner pokémon and the Joltik they were given.
“All pokémon, break through that barrier with discharge!” commanded Burgh from the other flank.
Amy and I stood back as a violent wave of thunderous attacks tore up the outer rim of Aizawa’s forces. Members of the Trainers Association used their other pokémon to defend the squadron of electric pokémon. Elesa turned to Amy and me as we rushed in closer to the base.
“No time to waste, Professor,” said Elesa, “you two get inside the tower now. Burgh and I will take care of things here.”
The opposing trainers and their pokémon refused to give up, so Amy, Vileplume, and I dodged them to storm the base itself. Elesa held off the trainers trying to get in our way so we could get inside.
We came short of a tightly sealed door that would not allow us to get in by normal means. Luckily, Amy had a plan. She released her Rhyperior, a large rock and ground type reptilian pokémon with two drilling horns on the top of her head and the center of her face.
“Rhyperior, use drill run to ram your way into that door!” she told her.
Rhyperior used her horns to bore holes into the door and weaken it. At last, the door collapsed and Amy and I found our way in.
“I’m so glad you came along, Amy,” I said.
“There’s no time for that,” she replied. “We gotta act fast if we have a chance of getting Prof. Sakura.”
As we entered the base, we witnessed the chaos that ensued as trainers and their collared pokémon were scattered about. While Burgh and Elesa infiltrated the tower from the surface, Cheren and Clay came in from underground, dividing Aizawa’s forces even further in a three-pronged attack. Looks like their part of the operation went successfully too.
But despite the confusion, four trainers and their collared pokémon still managed to spot Amy and me. Amy responded without hesistation.
“Victreebel, Luxray, Sneasel, assist Rhyperior and clear the way,” said Amy as she released her additional pokémon.
I watched amazed, as her pokémon coordinated with each other perfectly against our opponents. Rhyperior created earthquakes with her powerful feet to knock our opponents off balance. Sneasel then assisted in swiping enemies as Victreebel would slice others with razor leaf. Luxray finished them off with a shock wave attack, disarming the collars in the process. The opposing trainers, however, appeared to have much more confidence in themselves.
Aizawa’s clients each whipped out their remote devices that controlled the collar. By activating its power, the collars instantly rebooted, controlling the enslaved pokémon again. This must have been true for all the pokémon each team has fought thus far.
“Don’t go underestimating us,” said one of the trainers confidently. “Professor Sakura has improved on her technology since she last saw you, Prof. Ginkgo. Electric attacks won’t work anymore, so long as the collar remains around our pokémon’s necks.”
Amy sneered, perhaps feeling frustrated as our situation had changed; but I know that she would not give up so easily.
“Rhyperior, make an earthquake to throw these trainers off balance. Victreebel, take their remote devices using vine whip. Sneasel, do the same with your thief ability.”
The three pokémon executed their attacks perfectly, obeying her every command. Once all four remotes were gathered together, Rhyperior stomped on them, destroying them all.
The opposing trainers tried to command their pokémon to attack us again, but each one disobeyed. Amy’s Victreebel then tied all the trainers together using wrap to keep them from getting away or attacking again. With the pokémon subdued, Amy interrogated the trainers while I took off the pokémon’s collars.
“Tell me where we can find Prof. Sakura,” said Amy sternly. “If you speak truthfully, we might be inclined to go easy on you.”
The trainers reacted angrily in denial.
“We would never tell you!” said one of the trainers. “She gave us the power to control our pokémon.”
“Yeah, we will always support her!” said another trainer.
“Nothing you can do or say will convince us to sway against Prof. Sakura!” said the third trainer.
It seemed as if none of them could tell us anything useful, but then, the fourth trainer trembled and burst into tears. She was young, probably Brian’s age, and decided to fess up to me.
“You’re Prof. Ginkgo, right?” she asked me.
“All I ever wanted was to have my Palpitoad do as I say. I never imagined that doing so would force me to work for Prof. Sakura.”
“Shut up!” shouted one of the other trainers. “He’s the guy that betrayed our master all those years ago. Tell him anything else and we’ll make sure you wish you hadn’t.”
Amy glared at the trainer with a scolding stare.
“You’re in no position to make threats,” she said to him.
Amy comforted the girl by rubbing her shoulder, letting her know things would be alright.
“Tell us where we might find Prof. Sakura.”
The girl nodded.
“Keep climbing the stairs to one of the top tiers of this tower,” she said. “You will find her there.”
I nodded and went on my way to climb the seemingly endless stairs when the girl asked me one more thing.
“Sir, will I ever be able to train my Palpitoad the right way?”
As much as I wanted to pursue Aizawa as quickly as possible, I couldn’t ignore her feelings. I may be a warrior, but my dream, first and foremost, was to encourage people to treat their pokémon with love and respect. I turned around and answered her.
“Of course you will,” I said. “Just look at him right now. Sure, he’s weak and tired from getting a beating, but he’s looking right at you with utmost affection.”
We turned to look at Palpitoad and the other pokémon. Only Palpitoad looked back at us with eyes full of sadness and regret, rather than anger and hate.
“This is what your pokémon looks like without the control of a piece of technology. These are his true feelings made from his own free will. He’s crying, not for the pain he has gone through to get here, but for the empathy he shares with a trainer that cares for him.”
The girl started to cry some more.
“I’m sorry, Palpitoad,” she said. “I never meant to beat you every time we lost a battle back then. Can you forgive me?”
I smiled warmly.
“I’m certain he already has,” I said. “When this all calms down, take him and heal him, and don’t ever let go of your love for him. He will always be there for you, so please be a great trainer and be there for him as well.”
The girl smiled at me as Amy released her from the binding. They embraced each other as the other trainers fell silent from their frustrations.
“I’ll take care of things down here,” said Amy. “You’ve done all that you can for them. Now go and teach that would-be professor a lesson! Get going, Shuichi!”
I gave Amy my regards and proceeded up the tower stairs with Vileplume at my side.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Vileplume and I stopped about halfway up to the tower’s highest floor. No one had encountered us because they had all been scrambling to fight the gym leaders’ operation from below. I was tired from running so many flights of stairs that I had to take a break.
“Calling it quits already?” said a loud voice over the speakers in the empty room on this floor.
I knew that voice. And it wasn’t very comforting to know I couldn’t find her.
“Ai-san, enough hiding!” I cried. “Show yourself now!”
“Oh, I will in time,” she said. “But first, there’s someone I’d like you to meet.”
A collared Lampent appeared from behind me. Vileplume was too terrified to move from the very sight of the ghost pokémon. I released my Poliwhirl to counter it.
Lampent fired a flame burst attack at me, but Poliwhirl returned fire by shooting a water gun in its way. The flame burst attack, however, scattered in collateral damage, burning my left sleeve. I patted it down with my other hand to put out the fire. That’s when I realized that I have seen this Lampent before.
“No way, why would you do that?” I asked the Lampent’s elusive trainer. “Why would you go back to obeying her?”
Lampent’s trainer appeared from behind a column on the outer edges of the tower’s empty floor. Sure enough it was Brian, but he did not speak.
Brian’s eyes looked at me, glazed over, as if he could not see me at all. And around his neck was a collar, just like the ones around each enslaved pokémon.