Ok, new chapter! This one doesn't have Rosie in it, but the next one will!
Also in this, Thunder's trainer is still only referred to as "Master" for that is what the pokémon know him as.
The Path of Destiny
Chapter 19- A Change of Plans
(REALLY old picture but I don't feel like drawing a new one! D:)
Snowcrystal was having a dream again; one very similar to the one she’d had before. She was back at the mountain…or was she? It seemed like the mountain, but everything around her was hazy, and she seemed to somehow be in another area at the same time. It was almost as if the mountain surroundings were really a thick mist disguised to look that way and which she could barely see through. It seemed like a strange kind of mirage and that what was really there were the strange images of places she had never seen showing faintly through her mist-like surroundings.
The cages containing strange pokémon were back, only this time, she was trapped as well, though not in a cage. A chain, much like Thunder’s, was around her back paw and driven deep into the snowy ground; she could not pull it out. Oddly enough, she wasn’t very concerned at all with her own predicament; she just wanted to help the other pokémon. And one of them was speaking to her.
“Stop trying…there’s nothing you can do! Not anymore!”
Snowcrystal was confused at this statement…and why they seemed to want her to stop trying to free herself and help them. Just as she thought that, she heard one of them shout for help, but not to her.
Snowcrystal turned around and for the first time noticed Stormblade standing a little ways away. It was him they had been calling to for help, but he turned and ran, vanishing into the dark mists that were disguised to look like the mountains. Suddenly the haze seemed to clear, and Snowcrystal found herself staring around at familiar surroundings; she was once again awake, and the others were sleeping nearby. It was a bit lighter now, so she figured it must be close to dawn.
She stood up, shaking scraps of dead leaves from her fur and looked around for a moment and then lay back down on her side, wide awake and alert despite the fact that she’d only had a few hours of sleep. The same worry she had been feeling before returned, and she remembered a conversation she and Wildflame had had with Spark soon after they had returned and after Stormblade had left, about them not finding any information about the poachers, Articuno, or how to heal Stormblade’s wounds. Not one of them was sure about what they should do now-Snowcrystal wanted to try and find Rosie and help her, while at the same time, she knew Stormblade wouldn’t be able to keep up. Thunder might, but not Stormblade.
Looking around, she suddenly realized that Stormblade was still missing. Feeling worried, she glanced toward the dead pidgey that lay in the center of the small clearing. Stormblade should have been back by now…
Padding over to Spark, who was sleeping soundly, she prodded him in the shoulder a couple of times before he stirred, looked up at her, and blinked sleepily.
“Snow? It’s still dark…why’d ya wake me up?” he mumbled drowsily.
“It’s Stormblade…he’s not back,” she whispered.
“Who?” Spark murmured, obviously still half-asleep.
“Stormblade!” Snowcrystal shouted, rather loudly.
Over by a thick oak tree, Wildflame stirred. “What’s all the shouting about?” she growled, not seeming drowsy in the least. She added in a sarcastic voice, “Are we under attack again?”
“Stormblade’s not back!” Snowcrystal yelled. She was a bit worried about Thunder as well, but when she thought about it, she really didn’t expect her to be back, at least not until it was fully morning. It was Stormblade’s disappearance that really worried her; why would he leave and not come back all night when he knew he couldn’t defend himself if he was attacked by something?
“Don’t get so worried over nothing,” Wildflame muttered, standing up and shaking her coat free of moss and leaves before glancing over at the pidgey, “And unless you want some scavenger to steal your prey, I suggest you better eat it. If Stormblade doesn’t want it, that’s his problem.”
Snowcrystal scowled; she knew Wildflame and Stormblade had started out as enemies, but she had thought that problem had been at least somewhat solved after the battle with Blazefang’s pack. She wished Wildflame would at least try to care a little more.
After a moment, she relaxed, knowing that after all, Wildflame could be right, though she still wanted to save the only food they had for Stormblade when he returned.
“Wildflame’s right,” Spark agreed, sitting up and shaking his spiky head, “Oh, and if no one wants the prey, I’ll have it!”
“No!” Snowcrystal growled, irritated, as she swiped her paw under Spark’s as he bolted toward the pidgey, causing him to trip. “You didn’t catch it, I did! And I say it’s for Stormblade!”
“Huh?” Spark mumbled in a surprised voice, standing up and looking at her with what he hoped was a pitying expression, “What makes him so special? Aren’t I special?”
“No,” Wildflame answered for her, “Apparently you’re not. Now, go find Thunder…me and Snowcrystal will go and look for Stormblade.”
Spark made a face at her and stuck out his tongue, but nonetheless, he bolted through the bushes and in the direction of the pond where he’d seen Thunder earlier. Wildflame began to head one way, and pointed with her tail in a different direction, indicating that Snowcrystal should look there. “We’ll meet back here, right?” Snowcrystal called to the houndoom, and Wildflame nodded before heading off on her own. Snowcrystal picked up the pidgey and vanished into the surrounding bushes as well.
“Blazefang,” A voice hissed through the bushes. Blazefang was startled into wakefulness as Wildflame’s horned head broke through the thick cluster of leaves.
“Wildflame,” the houndour leader growled, “What took you so long? You’ve waited-”
“Yes, I know,” Wildflame muttered, “But Snowcrystal hasn’t revealed anything about Articuno, in fact…I don’t think she knows anything about where he is at all.”
“Not even an idea?” Blazefang replied, his face blank.
Wildflame shook her head. “Don’t think so,” she mumbled, “Plus her group has a badly injured scyther and a vulpix that was taken by poachers…Stormblade, the scyther, is slowing them down while now they can only think about rescuing Rosie…the vulpix. Either way, they won’t find Articuno anytime soon. We’re better off looking on our own.”
“Fine,” Blazefang muttered, “It’s about time I got the pack moving away from this place…I don’t like being so close to a human habitat.” He spat the last few words with distaste, getting up and walking away. Wildflame followed. “What are you doing?” Blazefang growled at her, “Go back with them…you need to stay there in case they find something!”
“But…” Wildflame began, confused.
“You heard me!” Blazefang growled, “Go back…stay with them, and report to me if you find out anything!”
“But how will I find you?” Wildflame cried.
“We won’t be too far ahead,” Blazefang replied, “Just in case they do know something…or find out…or just happen to get lucky…I’ll send a few scouts to find the growlithe from time to time so we still know where they are.”
“But-” Wildflame began again, but Blazefang cut her off.
“The growlithe knows something!” he growled suddenly, startling Wildflame into silence, “I know she does! Even if she doesn’t know Articuno’s exact location she still knows something we don’t! Why else would she have started this journey of hers?”
Wildflame was silent, and Blazefang was walking away, back toward the pack. Something told her not to argue with him. With a deep sigh, she turned and headed back to Snowcrystal and the others, strangely not feeling too angry about it. Sure, she wasn’t certain that any of them really knew anything, but somehow it seemed like a welcome relief to go back. If anything, she would be somewhat free of Blazefang’s tyranny.
Master took a step backwards, watching as his own scyther leaped toward him, scythes gleaming and ready to kill. Words escaped him; he couldn’t think quick enough; his terrified thoughts were only focused on the pokémon in front of him. It would be hopeless to run…scyther were too fast…
Volco wondered why his trainer was just standing there. In a sudden surge of panic as the scyther came close enough to strike, close enough to rip Master in half, the quilava darted in front of his owner, firing a blast of flame at Thunder and sending her sprawling backwards into the mud.
The scyther skidded to a halt and righted herself, turning to look straight at Volco. The fire pokémon was standing protectively in front of Master, growling. This seemed to snap Master out of his reverie. “Good job Volco!” he shouted, his usual tough-sounding voice returning, “We can take her easily! She’s weak!” Regaining confidence quickly, Volco darted ahead of Master, crouching down and watching Thunder through narrowed eyes.
But his nerves failed him. Thunder was staring straight into his eyes, her gaze boring into him. He had never seen such a terrifying look in a pokémon’s eyes before. Thunder didn’t just look infuriated…she looked almost insane. She was standing firm, despite the blood that dripped steadily down her side and trickled from her many other wounds. Some of the blood was running down her scythes. Her mouth was open wide enough for Volco to see every one of her razor sharp fangs. He wanted to look away, but his body refused to obey him.
Thunder could tell he was afraid. Fear was plastered all over his face. And this time it was he who was afraid…this time, he was at her mercy. Volco was backing away, his flames flaring up to their brightest.
He thought he could win by a type advantage…
Thunder stared hard at the flames, not showing the least bit of fear or seeming threatened at all. Volco was a pet. A pampered, spoiled pokémon who had never been forced to endure what Master had put her through. He had not been tortured day after day since he was very small. He had not been starved or beaten. He had not been forced to fight until he passed out from blood loss.
He was no match for her…She would rip him to shreds!
Volco cried out in horror as the scyther ran toward him. The look on Thunder’s ravaged face was something out of a nightmare. Dimly, he heard Master shout, “Flame wheel!” And more out of fear than actually comprehending what his owner was saying to him, he fired the blast of searing flames straight at Thunder. The scyther was too injured to be able to move quickly. The attack didn’t miss.
Thunder collapsed, and then slowly began to stagger upright, her head lowered. But Volco did not hear a cry of pain. It startled him, because even Thunder had cried out whenever she had been struck with a powerful fire attack in battle. He knew she had a weakness to fire and Master knew it as well, for he had used it as punishment on her many times. It seemed even stranger that the scyther hadn’t made a sound, due to the many other wounds she had; the attack could only have made the pain worse. A few seconds later, Volco suddenly realized that Thunder was
making a sound, though it was not one of pain. Instead of crying out, Thunder was laughing…at him…as if he had just done something rather silly and embarrassing. But it definitely wasn’t a pleasant laugh, and it unnerved him even more. Thunder slowly lifted her head up toward him, her eyes glaring as she grinned wickedly at him in a way that made him want to run as far away as possible. Yet once again, he found his body wouldn’t move.
Thunder suddenly stood up straight, acting as if the attack hadn’t even happened. “You and Master tortured me all those years, and now, you think a simple FLAME WHEEL is going to stop me?”
the scyther cried out mockingly, a jeering tone in her voice.
Volco didn’t have any time to react to her statement before the enraged scyther was upon him, gashing him across the side of his face with one of her blades, while the other swung toward him at the same moment, and if he hadn’t moved his paw to the left by accident in that very instant, the scythe would have severed it completely.
Volco screeched in pain and tumbled backwards, one paw held lightly over the deep cut on his face. Master was shaking as he watched the scene, but he still called out, “Flame wheel again!”
However, Volco didn’t have the chance to fire another attack. Thunder continuously slashed at his weakening body, ignoring his cries of pain as he lay helplessly in the mud, no longer having the strength to even keep his flames up. Volco could hear Thunder shouting, “See what it’s like NOW? How do you like it?”
He didn’t even try to reply; he could barely comprehend her words and the pain was too great, only becoming worse with each new attack.
In a panic, Master reached for Volco’s pokéball, only to find that he couldn’t return him-Thunder kept getting in the way. He watched as Volco finally managed to stagger backward and away from Thunder, but only collapsed a moment later as the scyther stood over him. Volco weakly placed an injured paw in front of his bloody face, holding it out in a pleading gesture for her to stop, staring fearfully up at his tormenter as he remembered…
…He had seen Thunder being beaten, both by Master and in battle. He’d even carried out some of her punishments in the past and never thought anything of it. He’d often watched her being hurt badly as a penalty, even laughed at her, but never had he once thought that he would one day be in her place. And now, Thunder absolutely terrified him. He had seen her being beaten, but he had also seen her being made to fight battles to the death, watched her as she was forced to kill her opponents…seen the terror in their eyes…the very same terror he was feeling now. Then suddenly it struck him fully. She was going to kill him.
And something snapped.
Volco’s eyes narrowed as they suddenly filled with a terrible rage…rage at the thought that she, nothing but a lowly servant
of his Master would ever dare harm him. And with a strength he hadn’t known he possessed, he dodged the scyther’s next blow, landing spryly on all four paws. Then his fur started to glow.
Thunder staggered back, momentarily blinded as the brightness intensified and the quilava’s luminous form began to expand. Behind her, Master smiled and placed Volco’s pokéball back into his pocket. There was no need for that; the tables had just turned…
When at last the dazzling glow subsided and Thunder could see clearly again, Volco was more than twice his previous size. The fire type now stood on two legs rather than four, and was taller than she was. His fur was still the same yellow and dark blue, only it was thicker, and she could barely make out some large red spots on the back of his neck before he turned to face her completely.
The newly evolved typhlosion’s ears lay flat against his head and he bared his now quite larger fangs at the scyther. Now it was his turn to laugh. “Who’s stronger now
?” he cried, running forward as huge, bright flames erupted around his neck, much bigger than the flames he had had as a quilava, and with a roar he ripped his claws into the startled Thunder's face and slammed her to the ground.
Startled by how quickly the attack had come, Thunder twisted free from Volco’s grasp and brought her blades upward toward the typhlosion, but he had moved out of the way. As Thunder struggled to stand, Volco bent down on all fours, feeling strangely excited as he discovered a new outlet for his power. He had used flame wheel many times before as a quilava, but this was his first flamethrower. And it was made all the more powerful by the strength gained from his evolution. Thunder darted to avoid the blast, and although she managed to get out of its direct path, the flames still seared across her side and leg…badly. The scyther tried to get up again, only to find that her leg wouldn’t move. She tried to stand anyway, but the mud was far too thick and slippery; she only stumbled. She didn’t think she could fly; her wing hurt terribly and when Volco had pushed her down before, she had landed on it the wrong way. She could still see Volco standing at a distance, ready to use another fire attack.
“Coward!” she spat at him, raising her blades in as threatening a manner as she could in her current state, “Are you afraid to get close enough to face me in a real battle? Are you just going to cower over there and hope your fire attacks hit me?” Volco merely smirked in reply, and fired another blast of flame.
Thunder ducked and managed to crawl out of the way just in time, suddenly finding herself on firmer ground. With a cry she sprang up and, ignoring the searing agony as pain shot up her leg every time she tried to stand on it, she charged toward Volco with a speed that surprised him. The typhlosion whipped around, ready to fire another flamethrower. Thunder reached him before he could, swiping her blade at him with cunning accuracy. Volco tried to dodge, but still felt the sharp blade edge slice into the side of his face.
(Continued in next post...)