The Path of Destiny
Chapter 12- Spark’s Tale
Rain lashed down ceaselessly, while lightning flashed across the sky. The ground at Snowcrystal’s feet had turned to pebbly mud, and because of her small size, it was very difficult to wade through. Rosie was also having a considerable amount of trouble, as was Stormblade, mainly for the fact that he couldn’t fly and could only use one leg. After Snowcrystal stumbled in the thick mud yet again, only making her fur even filthier, she staggered upright and turned to the others behind her.
“Let’s stop and rest…”
“What, is it the rain?” Thunder asked, landing beside Snowcrystal. Unlike the growlithe, she had been able to fly over the mud. “You know, I don’t see what’s so bad about the rain…”
“Well it’s making everyone exhausted,” Snowcrystal replied, shaking mud from her paws. Her fur hardly looked white anymore, and she knew that the mud getting into her wounds couldn’t be good. “We need to rest. You might be able to keep going, but the rest of us can’t.”
“Fine,” mumbled Thunder, as she followed Snowcrystal to a group of large trees. Spark limped after them along with Rosie, and Stormblade followed last, Wildflame still supporting him along the way.
Underneath the trees, the six pokémon had a bit of shelter from the rain, but the ground was just as muddy underpaw. Spark tried to shake his fur dry, which only splattered Snowcrystal and Rosie with mud. Stormblade was lying down against a tree, not bothering to try and find a less muddy spot. Snowcrystal realized he was probably too weak, as he could barely walk by himself.
Standing up, Snowcrystal padded over to where Spark, Rosie, Wildflame, and Thunder were, letting Stormblade rest. “Listen,” she told the others, “We need to find out what to do. Obviously Stormblade needs help-with his leg that badly injured he probably won’t ever walk again unless we find someone who knows something about healing. And ...well, not just Stormblade, but you two as well,” she glanced toward Thunder and Spark, “Your wounds could get infected…and pokémon die from that.”
“I’ll be fine,” Thunder shrugged, “Master never treated my wounds, unless they were very serious, and nothing ever happened to me.”
“Well first things first,” Rosie spoke up, “We should focus on finding food as soon as this rain lets up, and we should rest for the time being. We have to be as strong as possible, especially Stormblade.”
“She has a point,” Wildflame agreed.
Snowcrystal nodded, realizing that except for the berries back in the forest, they hadn’t been able to find any food other than the honey in the combee hive, and Stormblade hadn’t eaten any of either, with the exception of a few rawst berries that Rosie had found. It been two days since she had met Stormblade and Spark, and now that she thought about it, none of them had really had much luck in finding food. “Yes,” she replied, “Those who can should try and hunt or find berries as soon as the storm’s passed. I probably couldn’t catch anything, because of my white fur, so I could stay here with Stormblade…and Spark, I think you should be resting too, and so should you, Thunder.”
“If you’re suggesting I’m too weak to hunt for myself, you’re wrong,” Thunder replied, narrowing her eyes, “I’m not so helpless that I need others to bring food to me.”
“All right,” Snowcrystal sighed, knowing there was no point in arguing with her, “Wildflame and Thunder can hunt, and Rosie, can you search for other types of food, like berries?” The vulpix nodded. “Well, after we’ve rested a bit,” Snowcrystal continued, “We need to find a pokémon who knows about healing…there were only a few healers in my clan, and I never really had the chance to learn anything from them. And who knows what that fire attack was capable of doing…I’ve never seen burns that bad, and I’ve lived with fire pokémon all my life.”
“All made worse by the fact that he’s a bug type,” Wildflame put in, “I know you’re right about finding a healer-let’s face it, he’s not going to last much longer if we don’t.”
Snowcrystal nodded silently, and all around the group of five pokémon huddled together beneath the trees, the rain seemed to be stopping, or at the least, it wasn’t raining as hard as it had been. “Well, we’ll be able to hunt soon,” Wildflame whispered.
“Everyone,” Spark said slowly, “You know that attack Blazefang used? Well…I think I might know what it is. I think it was Shadowflare.”
“Well that’s a big help,” Rosie scoffed, “You know what it’s called, and how does that help us?”
Snowcrystal turned to Spark, giving him a strange look. “You had a trainer…have you seen that attack used before?”
Spark shook his head vigorously. “No! Of course I’ve never seen the attack before! In fact, I’m not completely sure that was Shadowflare. I mean, where on earth would Blazefang learn a Forbidden Attack?”
Wildflame looked at Spark curiously. “Forbidden Attack?” she repeated, “What is that?”
Spark quieted down, as if unwilling to go on. “Spark,” Snowcrystal urged him, “What is
a Forbidden Attack?”
Spark glanced over at Stormblade, who was too far away from the group to hear anything over the sound of the rain and thunder, and turned back to the others. “Well,” the jolteon began uneasily, “It was something I heard when I was young, an eevee. My mother used to tell me and my sisters the story. My mother had a trainer, and he told it to his pokémon, and it was supposedly some sort of legend or something. I think I asked my parents if it was true once, and they told me it wasn’t, but some humans and pokémon seemed to believe it. I’m surprised Stormblade hasn’t heard.”
“Well, what was the story?” Thunder asked with mild interest, sitting down and watching Spark through half-closed eyes.
“Uh, well…it went something like this…” he mumbled, looking away from the scyther, “I don’t remember it in great detail, but I can pretty much recall the gist of it. It was told to me by my mother and father, who heard it from their trainers, so I’m not sure how much of it is actually true…” he paused for a moment, then went on, “Well, in the story, there were a group of powerful pokémon long ago. They weren’t legendaries, but normal pokémon; though they were exceedingly strong for their kind. Well, from what I could tell, no one who knew about this story was quite certain of their species, but they watched over a land free from humans and marauding pokémon, keeping the area’s inhabitants safe.
“Well, one day, they began to notice that a few young pokémon, all of different elemental types, started to develop strange powers. These powers came in the form of completely unique attacks only they could perform. As these young pokémon practiced their strange gifts, the attacks became shockingly powerful, soon earning frightening names the other pokémon came to fear. There was an attack for fire, Shadowflare, an attack for ice, Deathfreeze, and others, though I can’t remember the names for most of them. I do remember my father describing Shadowflare to me…just like it looked when Blazefang used it.” Spark paused again to glance at the others. Snowcrystal and Wildflame looked intrigued, while Rosie and Thunder simply looked as if they thought the whole thing was ridiculous. Despite this, he kept going,
“Well, the attacks got so out of control that they destroyed the once peaceful land, growing stronger every time they were used. These powers corrupted the minds of those who used them, causing them to create mass devastation. The strange power of these attacks also seemed to be able to transfer from one pokémon to another of their same type, giving that pokémon the power of the attack, yet only if the first user has passed away. For this reason, others seeking to gain these powers sought to kill those who already possessed them. The strong pokémon who watched over the lands knew they had to do something to stop all this before it was too late. So somehow, they managed to steal the powers away from the young pokémon without causing any death, but they could not destroy those powers. However, the strong pokémon still managed to seal the powers away into different objects-stones and pebbles, or gems, something not easily broken, and hid them away in remote locations, where no one would ever think to look for them. Gradually the attacks’ powers diminished, though it is said that they’re still out there, waiting for a pokémon of the right type to stumble upon them, to use the attacks again and again and make them grow stronger. However, it is also said that all these attacks, at their most powerful form, will never stop until they’ve destroyed everything in their path. Shadowflare, for example, could become a dark and unstoppable wildfire that consumes everything it touches. No one was ever quite sure where the attacks came from or why they even existed, but the attacks stayed hidden and were never found. Still, they were not forgotten, and they became known as the Forbidden Attacks.”
Spark paused for a moment, and then mumbled, “Well, that’s how it went, roughly. I don’t remember much, but then again I never thought I’d have to remember an eevee kit’s story for anything. Seems pretty crazy though, doesn’t it? The things I believed when I was little…” He laughed nervously.
“Spark, I think it’s true, at least the part about the powers being sealed away,” Snowcrystal replied softly, “And Blazefang must have used that attack for the first time-you saw how shocked he was…”
“But if the story’s true,” Spark whispered, “If he uses it again, it could take control of his mind…”
“He looked pretty scared of it to me,” Rosie stated, “I don’t think he’d want to use it anymore.”
“Maybe…” Wildflame whispered, “But Blazefang has been known to be power-hungry. Once he gets over the shock, he could very well try it again. Let’s just hope the part about the attacks growing stronger isn’t true.”
“Spark,” Snowcrystal said quietly, “You said you knew the names of some of these attacks. What do you know about Shadowflare, the one you said Blazefang used?” She glanced over at Stormblade, who was still lying down, and then to Spark again.
“Well, obviously when I was young I was curious about the Forbidden Attacks, and asked about them. Of course, I’m not sure if all this is true or not, considering that everyone in my family believed it to be just a story to scare little pokémon… But my dad used to like telling me how dangerous all the attacks were, probably trying to scare me
or something. He said that a Forbidden Attack at its less-powerful stage won’t usually kill a strong pokémon, though a wound from one will never heal. He also told me the bit about them increasing in power and such, but that’s all I can remember at the moment...”
“Never heals, huh?” Rosie repeated, “Your dad better have been making that
part up.” As Rosie said this, Snowcrystal nervously glanced over at Stormblade, but he was too far away to have heard.
“Okay, okay!” Spark shouted, “I don’t know for sure, but yet…the whole Forbidden Attacks legend is a human thing…they
probably made it up.”
“If they made it up how did Blazefang use Shadowflare?” asked Snowcrystal.
“I…don’t…know!” Spark replied, gritting his teeth in frustration, “I told you what I heard, but apparently it was just a legend. Humans believed that sort of junk, most trainers do! You hear them going on and on about trying to find and see legendary pokémon and whatnot, they’re always fascinated with that sort of thing. Maybe Shadowflare’s just some rare weird attack that some attention-seeking human made into a myth-sorta thing. And of course they always write books about these different legends and myths and other humans-”
“Wait,” Snowcrystal interrupted, “What did you say humans do?”
Spark paused for a moment. “Uh…make up stuff, write books about legends?”
“What are books?” Snowcrystal asked, confused.
“They're um…flat objects made out of paper with pictures or markings in them that humans can somehow understand,” Spark tried to explain, “My trainer used to read them to me and the other pokémon sometimes, since we can understand what he said, but we couldn’t understand the markings in the books. It was really boring actually…especially this one book which just went on and on about the stupidest-”
“But you said humans can understand the markings,” Snowcrystal interrupted, “What if we can find a human who really knows whether the Forbidden Attacks are really what they are in the story?”
“That’s…crazy…” Spark muttered, “Humans can’t understand us…and besides, even humans aren’t sure about whether legends are true. Yes, I know that some of them spend a lot of time or even their entire lives searching for answers, but most of the legends are probably just stories.”
“But maybe there’s more to this…story you haven’t heard? Or a different version of it?” Snowcrystal asked, “If Shadowflare really was like how it was described to you, and the description matched Blazefang’s attack perfectly like you said, couldn’t other parts of the legend be true? Maybe what some humans think is fake is really real?”
“Ok then, well next time I see a human, I’ll ask him,” Rosie scoffed.
“She’s right,” Spark agreed, “Humans can’t understand pokémon, like I said before, and if they could, they probably couldn’t help us. I think we should just stay clear of Blazefang and hope he doesn’t use Shadowflare again. Forbidden Attack or not, that attack was
“Who believes that sort of thing anyway?” Thunder muttered, standing up and walking away, “Humans only want to be pokémon’s Masters. They don’t help pokémon.”
Suddenly a scowl appeared on Spark’s face. He darted in front of Thunder, glaring at her. Snowcrystal was surprised to see that he actually looked angry. “Take…that…back!” he snarled.
“Why?” Thunder replied, not seeming threatened in the least, “It’s true.”
“It is not!” Spark shouted back, “My trainer-”
“If you loved your precious Master so much why are you here in the wild?” Thunder replied icily, “Not that I can see any way a pokémon could care about a human.”
“Just…Shut up!” Spark cried, firing a pin missile at the scyther’s face.
Thunder didn’t even flinch, but simply turned her head slightly to avoid getting the spines fired in her eyes. Leaping at Spark, she aimed a slash attack, and though Spark dodged, he couldn’t avoid getting a long cut across his side. Both pokémon looked ready to keep fighting, but Snowcrystal darted between them.
“Stop!” she shouted, “Fighting’s not going to do anything!” To her surprise, Thunder didn’t make an angry reply, but instead simply turned and left. Glaring in anger, Snowcrystal rounded on Spark. “What were you thinking?” she cried, “We can’t be fighting now! Do you want to end up more injured?”
“But-” Spark began, “Oh come on, Thunder
was the one going to get injured. Type advantage!” He smirked.
“She would have chopped your head off,” Rosie stated bluntly, and Spark made a face at her.
“Just stop arguing everyone,” Snowcrystal sighed, her anger vanishing as she realized just how exhausted she was, “Look, it’s not raining as hard now, maybe those who were going to search should try and find some food now.”
“Fine,” Spark mumbled, “But I’ll stay right here.”
“Well, good bye then…” Rosie replied, as she and Wildflame ran past Snowcrystal and Spark and over a large group of rocks.
Snowcrystal sighed and padded over to Spark. “Look, I’m sorry…I know that humans aren’t all bad, but Thunder probably doesn’t know otherwise. I think you should just leave her alone.”
“Whatever…” Spark muttered, turning away from her.
Snowcrystal padded away from him, not wanting to argue anymore. If they didn’t find a way to work together soon, they would truly be lost.
Blazefang and his pack were unable to go on for the time being. Some of the houndour had been injured very badly by the scyther, and they would need a while to rest. That meant that the pack was stuck there for the time being. Blazefang, at least, was glad that Wildflame would still be traveling with the growlithe’s group; he knew that if they got any closer to Articuno, she would know. At least that much he could count on.
While the other houndour practiced battling or hunted, Blazefang sheltered from the rain beneath a tree, conversing with two other houndour in low tones.
“C’mon Blazefang, think about what you have here…I mean, that attack killed that scyther instantly!” Boneclaw whispered to Blazefang.
“But it followed him through the air…I mean, what sort of attack does that
?” Blazefang snarled back, “I have no idea what sort of thing this attack is capable of!”
The third houndour in the group, a mangy-looking pokémon called Flarefire, spoke up, “I don’t see what’s so terrible about having a really powerful attack, Blazefang, but if you don’t like it, that’s your choice. Just remember, it did get you out of danger when that scyther attacked you.”
“Maybe…” Blazefang muttered, turning away from Flarefire and Boneclaw, “But I still don’t understand it…”
Darting through the trees unnoticed, an aipom made his way in the direction of a small grove of fruit trees. It was a place he knew well, and his trainer didn’t mind if he took food from the wild; it was better than getting in trouble after he was caught stealing. Keeping a wary eye out for predators, he scampered from one branch to the next. The aipom stopped suddenly as he noticed what looked to be a near-dying scyther right below the branch he was balancing on.
The aipom’s first instinct was to flee, but he stopped himself, realizing that this scyther couldn’t do him much harm in its current state. Now over the initial shock, he sat back on the branch and looked at Stormblade curiously. After a minute or so with no movement at all from the scyther, the aipom idly broke off a small bit of the branch and held it over the still pokémon. He stopped for a moment, wondering if it was at all wise to throw something at a dangerous predator.
Then, deciding he didn’t care, he dropped the branch on the scyther. Stormblade gave a small cry and stirred slightly, but didn’t look up. However, the fact that he had moved at all made the aipom dart to a higher branch out of panic. When Stormblade didn’t attack him, he lost interest, and continued on his way, unknowingly in the direction of Wildflame and Thunder…
To be continued...