View Full Version : Halloween: A Hassle! (for Winter Competition)

11-02-2007, 02:41 AM
In this, my third URPG story, entered in the Winter Competition, we will not be following Psychic and Bladewing on their crazy, exciting adventures. Rather, we will be following a completely average, ordinary teenage boy at a costume party. A completely average, ordinary, somewhat hormonal teenage boy. :D

This is actually based off a Halloween One-Shot I'm working on that's been in my head for over a year, now. Bit late, I know.

I'll only be going for one Pokémon this time around, and since it's Hard it will be posted in two parts. Also, it's rated PG-13 because of some references to slightly more...mature themes. But only references, nothing more, and it's mostly for the sake of comedy.

Because despite being a Halloween story, it's kind of a comedy. XD
*does not encourage smoking or use of illegal substances*


Halloween: A Hassle!

“So, what are you supposed to be?”

Jeremy spun around automatically at the sound of the playful voice, barely audible over the racket of the loud music being blasted, momentarily forgetting the chunk of chocolate currently occupying his mouth. Consequently, he almost choked when he saw who it was that had asked the question.

Amid the noise and hullabaloo of fifty costume-clad teenagers chatting and eating and dancing to a funny techno song in the background, there she stood. Standing in front of him was a short, childish-looking girl that made a stone inside of him drop into his stomach. Her attire added to her somewhat juvenile look; she was wearing a light yellow tube-top with a red miniskirt, showing off fine curves and long, slender legs, and as if to compensate for the amount of her olive-toned skin being exposed she wore a pair of bright red gloves starting at her wrist and cherry red tube socks to her knees. Forcing his eyes away from her slim body so as not to look like a total goof, Jeremy could barely dare to look her straight in the eye; first the large red ears attached to a hairband caught his attention, going to the bright red extensions in her curly brown hair. His eyes inched over to her cheeks, painted with red circles coloured in everywhere except for in the shape of a plus sign, and a little round dot sitting at the tip of her nose.

“Minun, mi!” squealed a beige and blue Pokémon sitting on the girl’s bare shoulder, waving its tiny blue paws about and making its large ears flap, as if agreeing with the girl.

Jeremy pushed the warm hunk of chocolate down his throat, making his eyes water for a moment before he caught his breath enough to reply. “Um, I'm Stan Irving,” he said, still unable to look right at her, instead shifting his eyes over to the little red plus sign-shaped tail poking out behind her. He could almost feel Nicole giving him a quizzical look. “You know, uh, from that TV show – Stan Irving, Alligator Hunter?”

“Oh, I think I’ve heard of it…” Nicole said slowly in her high-pitched voice, sounding unsure but hopeful.

Jeremy plucked up the courage to look right at her as he replied. For a moment he felt the heat rise to his face as he stared into her cheery, bright green eyes. They were so huge and innocent; round like a Meowth’s whose curiosity had just been perked and gentle like an Eevee kit. He let his mouth go. “It’s a show about a guy named Stan who protects towns being attacked by wild beasts called alligators – these scary green things that walk on four legs and have huge snapping jaws while also defending their rights because nobody else would go near them, and he travels around the world helping these things with the assistance of his co-worker/love interest, Merri, and together they find out that –”

“Oh, that’s right; I hear the guys talking about it in school all the time!” Nicole nearly cried out in excitement, cutting him off without even realizing it. Jeremy let out a great sigh of relief at this – he hadn’t noticed how much he’d been babbling!

Good thing she stopped my rambling, or I’d have looked like the biggest idiot ever, he thought, his stomach jumping at the idea.

“Well, I like your outfit, anyway,” she said cheerfully, sounding genuine as she looked him up and down. Jeremy blushed with pleasure at the compliment and tried to look away from her wonderful bubbly green eyes.

“Thanks, it’s uh, just something I put together at the last moment.” A lie, of course. Jeremy had been working on assembling the costume for almost two months, from scratch. It wasn’t incredibly elaborate, but he thought it was still impressive. He had travelled all over the city in search of a safari outfit; the khaki t-shirt with the buttons and the collar and everything had been near impossible to find, but he had gotten lucky and found a good pair of the green-brown shorts, as well as some nice second-hand black boots. For the shirt he pretty much had to go out and buy a polo, dye it, sew on buttons and create pockets himself, which had taken hours of his manhood being questioned by a sewing machine. Then there was the wig; it sat atop his head, dirty blond with short bangs, a bit longer in the back, having to constantly hold back the urge to adjust it. For a finishing touch, he had collected all the alligator plushies he could get his hands on and stuck them in the many pockets of his costume and even attached some to his clothing with a handy sewing needle in some places. Granted, he didn’t have tanned skin or the handsome, muscular physique that Stan had, but he was bursting with pride nonetheless.

“That’s nice – see you around, Jer!” Before the teen could think twice, Nicole seemed to have lost interest and ran off calling to a friend at the other end of the room. Exactly who it was or what they were dressed as, Jeremy couldn’t tell; the room was so packed with all sorts of different people and creatures that making anything out was near impossible (unless you were the one guy on stilts who kept bumping into the chandelier). He quickly looked around, trying to find where the Plusle girl had run off to, but as a new song began playing from the makeshift DJ booth, the mass of bodies began dancing at a faster, giddier pace, and Jeremy found that he could no longer just stand there like a frozen Golem. The air became thick with perspiration and the ocean of costumes swirled about quickly and some began cheering. Time to get out.

Jeremy pushed his way through the crowd to get out of the stuffy basement. Accidentally stepping on a few toes and getting some guy dressed as a kissing booth very angry along the way, the Alligator Hunter wannabe hurried up the stairs into the less-crowded kitchen, a place of white tiles, white walls, steel appliances and grey marble tops. The Klumaks would probably have a fit upon returned home to find the very noticeable mess that would be left by all the rowdy teenagers their son had invited over for the party. Crumbs from all kinds of sweets and chips, spilled drinks and confetti from a wizard covered every inch of the floor and most inches of countertop, while the little island in the middle was being used for a Gummy Teddiursa-eating contest. A dozen or so spectators cheered them on with raucous laughter, and in the background the muffled music from downstairs could be heard. Among the spectators was a teen wearing a bright orange suit.

“Andrew!” Jeremy yelled to his friend, who immediately whipped his head about around in confusion, revealing a round face with tiny, inquisitive brown eyes as he searched for the person who had called his name.

“Over here!” he yelled once more, and Andrew’s eyes widened in understanding. He pushed past to catch up with his friend who stood adjusting his wig, and immediately wrapped his arm around Jeremy’s shoulder upon reaching him, grinning.

“Well now, my little Female Hunter is back. Tell me, oh great Stan, how did it go?” Andrew asked with a laugh, slapping his friend on his back.

“A flamboyant gang leader, how classy,” Jeremy stated teasingly upon taking in the pink polo, green vest and bright yellow tie underneath the neon-bright suit, with jelled-back hair and a large cat-like Pokémon standing at his friend’s feet. But he inwardly flinched at the question. He felt a jolt of nerves just thinking about it, feeling foolish upon recalling what had happened – had he really acted that stupid?

“Don’t avoid the question. But yes, I hope you like it. Puss here was more than happy to help me, weren’t you, pretty kitty?” Andrew grinned from ear to ear, taking his arm off Jeremy to make a silly face at the cat. Below, the cream-coloured Persian hissed angrily and clawed at a bright pink ribbon tied atop her head.

Jeremy stood there and blinked back his surprise for a moment, then grinned. “You brought Pouncefang?” He couldn’t help but chuckle as he leaned down to look at the poor cat. “And you made a tomboy Pokémon who could easily rip your throat out sport her worst enemy: a cute pink girly accessory. Nice going.” Jeremy laughed again.

“So she walked away after you acted like a total idiot, eh?”

Jeremy whirled to face Andrew, face pale, blue eyes wide, halfway to being livid. He looked about ready to grab one of the plushies in his pocket and smack his friend with it. Hard.

Now it was Andrew’s turn to laugh. “I told you, Jer; she’s a total space cadet! Her head’s totally empty because she’s always off in La-La Land,” Andrew told his friend firmly, his voice semi-serious.

Jeremy became flustered at the remark, but chose to ignore it, instead letting his eyes wander back over to the gummy-eating contest, where a boy dressed as Golbatman was shoving a big multicoloured handful of Gummy Teddiursa into his mouth.

“Dude, I’m telling you, you can find a WAY better girl who won’t be blissfully unaware of your existence. Nicole’s a freaking air head –”

“Shut up. She has a…a um, a nice personality, and –”

Andrew snorted, cutting his friend off to return the favour. “Who are you trying to kid? She’s good-looking, and that’s all you care about,” he said, laughing. Jeremy racked his brain for a good rebuttal, but other than “your mom’s good looking, and that’s all I care about,” no good argument came to mind.

Whatever, I don’t need an excuse for liking a girl, he reassured himself. If he chose to like a girl, it was his business! Gah, I just need to find her. Make sure she notices me, is all. Easy. Then I’ll be able to laugh in Andrew’s face. Yeeeeeeees. Immediately, a plan began to form in his mind that including him being around Nicole until she noticed him, talking to her every so often, more and more, then asking her out. She would immediately say yes, of course, then he could rub it in his dear old friend’s face…

“Let’s take a step out, Jer. I need a breath of fresh air.” Andrew seemed to hesitate on the word “fresh,” causing Jeremy to grin.

“Right. You just wish you had something to smoke, too.” Andrew took a swing at his friend, his orange sleeve a blur that Jeremy only barely dodged, laughing. “Okay, Mister Ironlungs, let’s get you some nice, good old fresh air,” Jeremy said, grabbing his friend’s arm and dragging him to a nearby pair of glass sliding doors that led to the deck outside, Pouncefang following idly.

Pushing the sheet of glass to the side, the two were hit by a wave of cool air. It was a pretty nice night out, and since the house was on the edge of the city, a fair few stars could be seen in the mostly-clear midnight sky, a crescent moon hanging high, just beginning to poke out from behind a thin wisp of cloud. The forest that bordered the property and started just past the end of the deck was peacefully silent save a gentle breeze rustling the thin, twisted branches of the trees.

Here, multiple teens were standing around or sitting on wooden benches, some enjoying the pretty Halloween night, others drinking with friends and some smoking, filling the air with a sickly sweet smell. Andrew wasn’t too subtle about taking in a deep breath, allowing his eyes to roll back in pleasure as he inhaled the stench. Jeremy and the Persian wrinkled their noses – Jeremy preferred the smell under different circumstances, and Pouncefang mewed with displeasure, but stayed by her trainer’s side anyway.

“Yup, fresh air, that’s the one,” Andrew said somewhat dreamily, plunking himself down on a bench and nearly sitting on a girl dressed in fishnets and a black corset…who didn’t turn out to be a girl after all. Jeremy giggled as the guy let out a “humph!” and strode away, wrapping a feather boa around his shoulders as his high heels clunked against the ground.

Pouncefang trotted over and lay down beside the bench, curling up without seeming to care much about the rest of the world. She attempted to scratch at the bow on her head once again, but was quick to give up and simply resort to cleaning her fur. Andrew took in another deep breath as a breeze sent the smell directly downwind to them, slumping in his seat. “Hey, wait,” he said slowly, lifting his head a bit. “Isn’t that Nicole over there?”

Jeremy’s head snapped in the direction that Andrew was looking before he could tell himself that Andrew was seeing things. When he didn’t see anyone except for a small group of teens wearing brown capes and holding light sabers (looking somewhat nerdy and obviously trying to stay upwind of the smokers) Jer decided that he had indeed been too quick to believe his friend.

“Quit messing with me, man. You’re not fun–” Jeremy stopped in mid-sentence as he saw a girl wearing red push her way through the group of Jedi, a girl dressed as a nurse Joy following her.

“Watch this,” Jeremy hissed suddenly, and right after fixing his wig once again quickly went over to meet Nicole and her friend. Andrew smirked but didn’t move while the Persian’s black ears perked with interest, and she got up and walked over to her owner’s friend.

“Um, hi, Nicole, it’s me again,” Jeremy said brightly, stopping to stand almost at attention in front of the girl. Nicole blinked in confusion then looked to her friend in the nurse outfit, who giggled mischievously, then to her Minun, who let out a squeak of disapproval.

“Ohhhh, the Feraligatr Hunter, Jeff, right?” Nicole said suddenly, her face lighting up.

“Miiiii nun,” the electric rodent said with exasperation, crossing his tiny arms.

“Er, actually, it’s Jeremy, and I’m the Alligator Hunter.” He patiently indicated toward the plushies attached to his costume, blushing slightly. He could almost hear Andrew mentally laughing at him. He gazed down at Pouncefang for support, but the Persian wasn’t paying much attention to him; instead, she was looking at Nicole. Or, to be more specific, the creature sitting atop Nicole’s shoulder.

There was a low growling noise coming from the back of the cat Pokémon’s throat, and she slowly began rearing back, coiling her muscles, and –

“MINUN!” squealed the electric type, springing off his trainer’s shoulder. The Minun landed on Pouncefang’s head and immediately bounced off, landing easily and then zipping away out of the Persian’s reach.

“Mreowr!” she hissed and immediately turned to give chase.

“Milo, get back here!” Nicole screeched, wide-eyed, but the Minun wasn’t about to listen; with a giant predator on his little blue tail, he began zigzagging about in hopes of losing her. He zipped between the legs of other party-goers and swerved crazily, the Persian following his path with a hungry glint in her eye.

“Pouncefang, damnit, get back here!” Jeremy shouted desperately. Andrew shot out of his seat and was trying to chase after his Pokémon, arms flailing about, screaming at her to no avail. The other people on the balcony all stopped what they were doing to watch the crazy game of cat and mouse, some getting sent sprawling onto the ground as first the Minun, then Persian ran through their legs, the larger of which only barely fitting though as she gave chase.

The girl dressed as a nurse gave Jeremy an angry glare before calling out to the Minun through the hullabaloo. “Milo, use Thunder Wave!”

The command seemed sensible enough. However the worked up Minun didn’t have time to stop and aim; he charged up electricity in his body as he ran on his four little legs, blue sparks zipping along his fur, and with a quick glance back he shot out a wave of electricity in Pouncefang’s direction. Unfortunately, the attack missed completely and hit Andrew who was huffing and puffing a good ways behind, wrapping around his body and causing him to become stiff as a board as he collapsed onto the ground. Nicole flinched.

Milo let out another squeal of fear, then swerved to run between Jeremy’s legs to cower behind his trainer, because surely she would protect her. Instead, as the electric mouse neared her, she and her friend screamed and dashed away. This seemed to cause an automatic chain reaction as one of the girl Jedi screamed as well, then more and more people began shouting, many running for the door back into the house in fright.

At the sound of all the commotion and havoc he had inadvertently wrought, Milo stopped and flattened his ears against the side of his skull, cowering in terror. The Persian grinned with a row of sharp fangs, readying one final pounce now that her prey was frozen with fear. And Jeremy knew he could be a hero.

The Alligator Hunter leaped at the poor, defenseless Minun, hoping to grab him and shield the little thing from his friend’s Pokémon. He leaped like a baseball player, springing off his feet, launching himself headfirst at the cowering Milo, moving in slow motion like in the last, dramatic scene of a movie, in which the lovable main character risks his life for –

WUMPH! He landed on his front with a loud thud on the wooden deck, protecting nothing and getting the wind knocked out of him. Pouncefang’s eyes widened at the sudden turn of events and she landed with paws skidding on the deck as she tried to avoid sinking her claws into her trainer’s friend, tripping over him and falling herself as she did so. The pink bow fell off her head.

Jeremy wheezed as he tried to fill his lungs back with air while also looking about frantically for Milo. It didn’t take him long; the Minun was standing at the edge of the deck, ears perked and still shaking somewhat.

Suddenly, he let out a shrill “Min!” and dashed off into the nearby forest.

“No!” Jeremy cried out. Feeling drained, he struggled to get to his feet and looked over to Nicole desperately. The Plusle girl was standing near her friend in the nurse Joy costume, who was bending over Andrew’s stiff form as he lay paralyzed on the ground. Luckily enough, she seemed to be reacting calmly enough to the problem and looked like she knew how to handle it. But this time, Jeremy was concentrating not on his best friend, but on Nicole, who was holding her gloved hands to her mouth and was casting a teary-eyed gaze at the spot where her Minun has disappeared. The teen couldn’t stand looking into her great big eyes, so wide and afraid for her Pokémon, without feeling awful. Stupid Andrew with his stupid Persian ruined everything! I should have known better, allowing a cat Pokémon near a little mouse, he thought, feeling like it had been his own fault. Then, an idea hit him.

Time to be a hero. Jeremy smiled in spite of herself, then caught Nicole’s eye, holding her gaze. ‘I’ll get you your Minun, don’t worry,’ he told her silently.

She didn’t seem to fully understand what he was trying to say just with his eyes. But it was okay, because when he returned holding her adorable little Minun in his arms, rescued and safe from harm, she would understand, and she would feel like she owed him the world.

Smiling to himself, Jeremy, still panting, ran off into the woods behind the electric mouse.

12-31-2007, 07:38 PM
Jeremy had been running for no more than ten minutes when the heroic thoughts filling his mind (with wonderful images of him holding Milo in his arms and Nicole thanking and kissing him endlessly) began leaving him. It felt as if the woods were sucking every ounce of happiness out of him; it was incredibly cold and dark, and even though Jeremy knew he wasn’t that far from the Klumak house, the forest was just so thick that it seemed to swallow up all the light. It was such complete darkness that it was as if nothing existed except never-ending forest filled with ancient, gnarled trees that seemed to have never seen the light of day or the warmth of the sun, the only light coming in weak, narrow shafts from the moon and stars from holes in the canopy high above. The forest blocked out all outside sounds; from the party, the nearby highway, from every bit of civilization, making the teen feel completely alone.

Here it was cold; the wind bit into his skin, stinging his cuts and whistling eerily in his ears. Twisted branches almost bare of leaves reached out from the shadows to snatch him up as he fumbled through the forest, trampling dried, shriveled leaves and tripping over unearthed roots, heart pounding painfully in his chest. The carefully-sewn fabric of his Alligator Hunter costume got snagged on just about everything, the plushies getting torn off to tumble to the ground carelessly. Thin branches sliced into his exposed skin, whipping his face and seeming to snatch and grab at him in an attempt to halt his wild chase. Every muscle in his body hurt, and it felt as if they were whining, pleading for him to stop. It felt as if the forest was fighting him every step of the way, doing all it could to slow his progress and keep him from reaching his goal.

Jeremy had to stop. He just couldn’t keep going like this; it felt as if the life was being drained out of him, sucking out his energy and his will to keep going. The muscles in his legs were tiring, his lungs felt worn, his arms hurt from being sliced up and he was exhausted, like he had run a marathon. He stopped running, wheezing as he leaned forward, hands on his knees in his attempt to catch his breath. Without even realizing it, the blond wig that had been part of his costume fell to the ground, revealing a mess of brown hair that immediately flew into his eyes, but it was the last thing in his mind.

“Okay,” he panted, wide-eyed as he took a short break, then swallowed deeply. “Need a plan. I just…need some kind of plan. Yeah,” Jeremy muttered, mouth dry, instinctively brushing his now free hair out of his eyes. He looked about desperately, straining his eyes to see through the darkened landscape, barely able to make out branches three feet away.

Then, ignoring his own words, he unthinkingly dashed forward once again in search of the tiny Minun. Swatting away everything in his way, Jeremy listened carefully for Milo’s scared cries, but he heard nothing but the wind’s eerie whistling through the trees, rustling the twisted branches. Feet pounding the ground, he ran with his mouth agape, sucking in cold air desperately, feeling as if the chill was seeping into the very core of his being. The further he ran from the warmth and cheer of the party, the more hopeless Jeremy felt, as if a cold hand was squeezing his heart.

The teen soon found that he had to stop once again, having tired and grown wary from thrashing mindlessly through the forest. Slowing his run to a jog and then to a halt, Jeremy put his bruised and cut hand out to rest against a nearby tree, feeling dry, rough bark under his palm. He fought to regain his breath, struggling as if the air was being pressed out of his lungs. Ears still pricked, Jeremy could hear nothing but the howling of the wind, feeling like pins and needed on his exposed skin.

“Milo!” he wheezed desperately, eyes darting about, ears straining. “Milo, where are you?!” Jeremy coughed raucously as he forced the words out, still struggling for air. Then he stopped, head snapping as a distant sound seemed to brush his ears. Unsure if it had been his imagination playing tricks on him, the blond-haired teen froze, tensing every muscle in his body to listen carefully to everything around him. He had heard something – he was sure of it!

But what? It wasn’t like the sounds of the wind or whatever, but I don’t think it was a Minun either, he thought, eyes darting about his surroundings as he racked his brain for a possibility. Then, he heard it again.

Spla-kla-kla-kla-kla-kla-kla-kla. It sounded like…like some sort of rapid clicking, slightly louder than before, as if it was…closer. A chill ran up Jeremy’s spine, his eyes widening in fear as he realized that this was exactly what it was.

Spla-kla-kla-kla-kla-kla-kla-kla, he heard once more, even closer than before. This time, however, it was accompanied by what appeared to be the sound of scurrying; like shadows scampering about all around him, coming closer and closer, like a whisper growing and swelling until it seemed to be everywhere, surrounding him completely in a chaotic chorus of rustling and hissing in the shadows, all out of sight.

Then, he saw them. He couldn’t make out much more than the outline in the lightless forest, but what he did see was enough to make his heart stop; thin, spindly creatures the green of dying leaves scuttled forward on multiple wiry, hairy legs into sight. At their fronts snapped sharp pincers, above which sharp, black eyes shone in the night.

Spla-kla-kla-kla-kla-kla-kla-kla! Before he knew it, Jeremy was standing face to face with seemingly hundreds of Spinarak, more probably being hidden out of sight in the shadows, like a never-ending ocean of fear all hissing and clicking their pincers eagerly. It was at that moment that, as fearful thoughts raced through his mind that Jeremy remembered the old stories told about man-eating bugs that were said to enjoy snacking on those lost in their territory. As the boy spun about wildly, watching the Spinarak closing in from every direction, he prayed to whatever god who would listen that this was not the case.

His last hopes melted away when the spiders turned around, shooting out long, silky threads from their lower abdomens. For a moment, Jeremy could almost swear he saw the face-like markings on their backs grinning evilly at him as the strands arced over his head, shining like silver for one brief moment as they caught the light of the blocked-out moon, coming to land behind him. As the teen watched in horror, the strings began threading intricately together to form a huge, perfectly-spun web, acting as a giant wall to block the way he had come. Then, out of the webs themselves, invisible lids seemed to snap open all at once, revealing huge black eyes, staring unseeingly at the teen before blinking back out.

“No…” Jeremy breathed in a whisper, turning pale. Panic that he could no longer fight off began to rise from deep within him, bubbling to the surface of his conscious in a swift stream, causing his adrenaline to begin pumping afresh. Suddenly he dashed at the barrier that had been formed to keep him trapped, determined to break through it. Head bent forward in a ready head butt, he immediately felt the sticky, gooey substance stick to his hair and flesh in a tangle. For a moment it felt as if he couldn’t move, as the thin but surprisingly strong strands seemed to almost spread over his body, coating it, and then WHAM! With sudden, shocking force Jeremy was thrown back, as if he had been launched in an elastic band, slamming to the ground on his back, the wind knocked out of him and pain shooting up his body.

As he struggled to get air into his worn lungs and attempted to sit up despite his every muscle protesting, between breathless pants he saw that the webs were…gone.

Jeremy heard a great deal of excited hissing and clicking behind him, like laughing – an eerie chorus drawn out of a nightmare. “What’s going on?” he wheezed, teary-eyed as the laughter echoed in his ears. Then, it changed.

Slowly at first, he could barely hear it behind his heart pounding in his ears, it sounded as if all the voices were melding together, evening out to all make their dreadful sounds at the same time. Then, they began deepening and morphing until it sounded like low, echoing, human-like laughter.

Before he could wonder why, however, something not unlike a wave of pure energy collided with his tired, worn body. Jeremy let out a sharp cry of pain as it slammed into him with so much force it sent him sprawling back onto the ground. Groaning, he slowly got up, wiping dirt off his costume, though it was now at a point beyond repair. He didn’t even care anymore, though, and as he came face to face with his attacker, from whom laughter was now still emanating, it became his last worry.

In front of him now was a peculiar creature; floating easily in midair, it was surrounded by a thick, purple-ish haze that blew in the wind, but never disappeared. At its center two bright, creepy eyes shone, and its mouth, twisted into a wide grin bore large, sharp fangs.

“Gastly!” Jeremy hissed, recognizing the poison/ghost type from a documentary he had once seen, the calling of its name seeming to make the Pokémon’s grin widen. It laughed once again, and it was then that the teen’s eyes drifted away to look back at the Spinarak horde, hoping that the two species might get into a fight that would distract them long enough to allow him to escape, but he instead found to his amazement that the spiders were disappearing! The bug Pokémon were turning transparent one by one, then seemed to shimmer out of existence.

“A…trick?” Jeremy asked slowly as the realization began to dawn on him, staring on in bewilderment. His heart began slowing its frantic pounding, and he found that muscles he hadn’t known were tensed up were now relaxing. Except his fists, which were slowly curling into tight balls. “I was stopped for this?! I’m not even going to be eaten! Argh, I’m getting out of here!” he cried in frustration, turning tail to run and get away from the crazy Gastly as quickly as possible. He had barely run five feet when he smacking into something like a hard wall. He couldn’t see it, but once again he was thrown backwards to land unceremoniously on the ground.

“Gha-gha-gha!” the ghost Pokémon laughed harshly from behind him. Leaping off the ground, Jeremy felt the heat rise to his face as he flared up in anger.

“Mean Look! Or was that Spider Web?!” he spat angrily. The Gastly stopped laughing, but its grin remained, and there was a hungry glint in its eyes. “Damn it!” The boy glared at the Pokémon who had trapped him, but knew he could do nothing. Then, almost involuntarily, he reached into the pocket of his shorts. “I promised my brother I’d only borrow his Pokémon for show, and I wouldn’t use it in battle. He’ll have to forgive me, though – you’ve given me no choice, which I hope you’re happy about. And I really need to get out of here; I’m on a mission.” Jeremy drew a Pokéball out of his pocket, seeing the ghost watching his every move eagerly, no longer surrounded by a single Spinarak.

“Snapper, go!” The teen enlarged the Pokéball, then, squinting through the darkness, threw it to the ground. Popping open, a small burst of light emerged from the sphere, taking the form of a bipedal creature with short, chubby limbs and covered in spiky fins. Its scaly skin was noticeably blue, though even in the lack of light it could be seen that some parts of its body were covered in yellow scales as well.

“Naw!” Snapper shouted confidently from his fang-filled snout, the Croconaw taking an offensive stance immediately.

Jeremy saw the well-trained Pokémon looking about at his surroundings despite vision being limited, assessing the situation and at the same time seizing up his opponent. The Gastly did the same in turn, tilting its disembodied head in curious excitement, eyes racing to examine the crocodile. Trying to use this time wisely, Jeremy tried to use it to think up some sort of plan, but Snapper was already two steps ahead of him.

“Croco! Naw!” the water type cried boldly, standing even taller and twisting his face, snout curled and eyes gleaming to be intimidating. The Scary Face worked, and for a moment the Gastly’s confidence wavered noticeably.

“Yes! Great, now use Slash!” Jeremy shouted, hoping to sound confident like his brother always did. The Croconaw turned to stare at the boy, raising an eyebrow skeptically. He then shrugged simply and ran at the ghost, claws drawn in preparation to strike. Upon reaching his target, Snapper leaped at the floating ball of gas, bringing his paw down powerfully, but it passed right through the Gastly, who was completely unaffected.

Snapper landed on the ground with relative ease, not seeming very surprised – Jeremy on the other hand was ready to smack himself for forgetting that normal attacks couldn’t hit ghost types. The poison ghost, looking incredibly pleased with itself, stuck out its great big tongue, sticky and wet with saliva, and Licked the Croconaw!

“Croc!” Snapper cried in shock, body tensing up as the rough tongue made contact with his skin. He attempted to leap forwards in a Bite attack, but his feet seemed rooted to the spot! “Naw,” he grunted, clenching his teeth.

“No! Snapper, uh, uh, do something, anything!” Jeremy cried desperately, recognizing the paralysis status condition. Nodding, the Croconaw pressed his lips together, spitting out a Water Gun, which splashed the ghost on contact, but it wasn’t strong enough to do much damage.

Shaking off the liquid, the Gastly closed its eyes in concentration. Jeremy was about to yell out a command, but then a small knife suddenly appeared out of nowhere! It floated in the air right in front of the ghost, and for a moment the boy just stared on in horrid fascination, then SHOOMP! The dagger flew right into the Gastly! It let out a quiet gasp as the blade sat embedded in its body, and Jeremy’s jaw dropped, his eyes bugging out, Snapper’s doing the same. Then, like the Spinarak, the knife just disappeared.

Jeremy blinked in confusion, then shook it off. “Alright, use Ice Fang!” he commanded, to which the Croconaw nodded, quickly snapping back to the battle. He once again leaped at the Gastly, this time his fangs bared, with small ice particles beginning to form around them. The ghost did nothing to defend itself, allowing the crocodile to sink his fangs into its body with a smirk on his reptilian face, bits of ice forming around the entry point of the attack.

“Gast…” the ghost said with a grimace as Snapper took a step back to admire his fine work. He didn’t seem to notice, however, as a dark, thick mist appeared, floating behind the Croconaw eerily. Then, it engulfed him, shrouding the water type completely in a deep shadow so that he couldn’t be seen, as if he had been replaced with a cloud of fog.

“Croc!” Snapper cried in alarm and pain from within the shadows, his shape indistinguishable.

“Snapper!” Jeremy shouted fearfully, wide-eyed. What the hell is going on?! he wondered frantically, unsure what to do. “Snapper!”

Then, the mist cleared; it did not completely disappear, but it shifted to reveal a somewhat shaken Croconaw who was blinking rapidly, jaw set with a slight tremble.

“Gha-gha-gha-gha-gha!” the Gastly laughed, swaying from side to side gleefully, as if it was enjoying its opponent’s pain. The gas around it began swirling excitedly, beginning to shift in front of him, twisting and morphing until it created a lavender sphere of churning energy before it. Still laughing raucously, it sent the Shadow Ball hurtling towards Snapper.

“Naw!” he cried, flinging himself out of the way of the incoming attack, the mist surrounding him following his movement, but there was hardly any need; the orb had been poorly-aimed and instead smashed into the trunk of a nearby tree, causing the dry, gnarled branches to shudder and shake from the impact.

“Awesome! Now, Aqua Tail!” Jeremy commanded, head back in the game. Grinning in triumph, Snapper nodded, and immediately his tail began turning blue. He swung it at the ghost with all his might, but then froze halfway! Once again, the Croconaw’s body seized up, and for a moment he couldn’t move, being fully paralyzed.

“Crap,” Jeremy swore, but this wasn’t the end of their problems; the mist surrounding Snapper moved in and just like last time completely encompassed the crocodile, who let out a pained grunt from inside. Jeremy racked his brain for an explanation for this, but could find no logical answer. It was only once the mist floated away to hover beside the now panting Snapper, not leaving his side that the teen realized what it might be.

“Curse…Snapper, it lay a Curse on you!” Jeremy shouted urgently with the sudden realization.

Before the Croconaw could react, however, the Gastly grinned evilly once more. It closed its eyes for a brief moment, and then snapped them open widely, but they no longer looked normal. Now they were dark purple, irises gone, and from their centers small waves began to appear, coming out of its eyeballs and pulsating through the air right at the water type.

“Watch out – it’s a Hypnosis! Use Screech, NOW!” the teen barked, thinking fast. With a brief nod, Snapper opened his maw wide, revealing rows of sharp fangs. Jeremy covered his ears as a deafening, high-pitched screech was let forth from the Pokémon’s mouth; the loudest sound he had heard that night, even louder than the cheers of the onlookers at the Gummy Teddiursa-eating contest or the blaring music at the party. The sound waves the attack created could almost be seen in the air traveling straight at the Gastly, colliding with the pulsation of the Hypnosis. For a moment there was like a tug-of-war in mid-air as both attacks tried to push past each other, but the Screech won easily, breaking up the sleep-inducing attack and slamming into the Gastly with full force, who screamed with pain at the piercing sound, causing Jeremy to grin in satisfaction.

The moment Snapper stopped to catch his breath, jaw clenched, the mist descended on him once again, completely coating him in shadow. Furious, the Gastly took this time to use Night Shade; tendrils of shadow shot out of nowhere, twisting and twirling through the air to hit the Croconaw just as the fog cleared. Caught by surprise, Snapper cried out in pain as the wisps hurtled into his scaly skin.

“Snapper! You okay?” Jeremy called to his brother’s Pokémon, who nodded, grimacing slightly from taking hit after hit. The teen bit his lip, glancing at the Gastly, who was gasping slightly as well, the gas around it seeming to waver weakly. “Then let’s finish this! Crunch attack!” he practically screamed, pointing to the ghost that had caused him so much trouble and pain.

“Croco, naw!” The Croconaw was only happy to oblige; crouching low to the ground, a determined glint in his eye, he pushed off with all his might, leaping at the Gastly, maw open wide, fangs glistening, the haze following him every step of the way.

“Ly, gast-ly!” the troublesome ghost moaned, unable to react before Snapper snapped his jaws shut around his opponent, who could do nothing but let out a strangled moan against the supereffective attack.

Snapper released the ghost from the powerful attack, taking a step back. As if in slow motion, Jeremy’s hand slid into his pocket. Just as the mist began to descend on the crocodile, the teen flung the Pokéball at the Gastly. The sphere opened on contact, sucking the ghost in before falling to the ground, where it shook violently in the darkness…

Pokémon Aiming For: Gastly
Difficulty Level: Hard
Length: 38.6k
Pages: Twelve

01-11-2008, 06:57 PM
Story line/Plot: Simple, effective, I think this particular plot was a perfect setting for someone such as Gastly. On a more term to term basis... started out not so common, I haven’t read many stories that began in such a social setting, I also like the use of earth animals as a setting for a costume, I’ve always wanted to add them to a story but haven’t. The only problem I had with the intro was the lack of... explanation, I gather from the mentions of various costumes that it was a party, I’m also assuming it was located in around a school? This stuff is pretty easy to figure out on ones own, but I suppose a story like this would probably be better off with it all just stated, not implied, not a big deal either way. At any rate we later find out that our main character fancies particular female and is dead set on winning her attention and affection, the basis for the story... our poor boy... err, back on subject that pretty much all I have to say on the school setting, besides the introduction to the main characters friend and some background for the setting of the party of which was well done, that about sums that part up I think, good job.

So, we’ll fast forward ahead outside of the party to where the causation for this capture occurs, I actually this part of the story quite funny, nicely written and thought out I think part of the story was probably the best part,from the somewhat cynical/humorous exchange between friends, to the downright hilarious chase of prey I thoroughly enjoyed it, especially the thunder waving of innocent victims.

Then comes the probably my least favorite part of the story, not that it was bad or anything just the travel leading up to the encounter was pretty dull, though the amount of detail you put into it was impressive. The battle however I did like, so well done with that and overall; good job.

Detail/Description: Probably one of the defining qualities of the story, the amount of detail in this story makes most others pale in comparison, seriously, it was almost as if it would never end, and truthfully, if more work and I don’t mean work in a rude way, had been put into the paragraphs I would have been trying to talk myself into just skipping ahead, thankfully, they were short, direct and informative, so good job with the detail in each segment in the story, I won’t quote any specific parts of the story as examples. but just know you did well here.

Grammar/Spelling: Absolutely no problems here, any mistakes you made, which I only noticed a few and even then, only one stuck out: “Curse…Snapper, it lay a Curse on you!”

I suppose it could work, but I think it could go much smoother with an 'its laid a Curse on you!" ETC.

As a whole everything here was nice and in order, the sentences were smooth, none were confusing or overbearing, the only complaint I’d make if I had to was, I’d like if a little more was implied instead of stated so... definite, I guess is the word, but that’s just me so...

Length: Fine.

Battle: A little short for my taste, but once again, that’s just me, I like to have small skirmishes up until the last battle which is huge, but for a Gastly, it was plenty. It started out with Gastly having an advantage of which it held pretty much for the whole battle before the Croc finally got it’s final say, I must say I’d have liked if Gastly took a little more damage though I realize with the curse attack it would have been wounded quite a bit. Still, it was more than enough.

Outcome: Gastly.... Captured! Congrats, overall a nice story, I really enjoyed it and well.. good luck.

As a side note, sorry for the delay, I haven’t had as much time as I thought I’d have, partially a reason for the rather short grade, at any rate, good luck and all that jazz/etc.