Blackthorn City, ‘A quiet mountain retreat’. The home to the dragon gym of the Johto League.
Jack flips through the Kanto Yellow Book to find an adequate place for his Pokemon to be sent to. Seriously, he is having a hard time taking care of 18 Pokemon all at once. Snorlax just eats and eats and drains his money while Miltank needs to be milked before she explodes. Jack can’t deal with those and others so he needs to locate a cheap location to store his Pokemon and hope the personnel take good care of them.
The Pokemon Center might not have been the ideal place to do this, but being a new comer to the city, he has nowhere else to go. It’s been three days since he left the broken down magnet train and he has just arrived here an hour ago on this busy morning. What happened to the two Tan Gang members is beyond him. Would they show up again? Probably not. Does Jack care? Not the slightest.
“Yes, I found a spot.” Jack pushes the ground with his feet to move the chair with wheels and slides over to the phones.
But just as he is about to dial the number, the registered Nurse Joy drops a different Kanto Yellow Book. “This is the newer edition, you might want to look through these. That other book is from three years ago.” She grabs the older book, walks away to the back, and places it in the recycle bin.
Jack sighs deeply and scans the new book for any new locations that might be better. After five long minutes, he actually reads something very promising.
“Inkleberry Ranch... Saffron City... elegant service at a low price...” He pushes around in his head trying to find that memory. “Oh, Marty, Marty Inkleberry. This must be one of his father’s businesses. Forget everything else, I’m going here for a discount. He..he..he...”
With a new plan to exploit friendship for a discount, Jack dials the number for the Ranch.
“Inkleberry Ranch, the new way of training. How may I help you?”
“Yes, I would like to speak with Marty Inkleberry please.”
“Uh, I can patch you through to Mr. Inkleberry...”
Quickly, “No, not the father, the son...” but the operator disappeared and the line was switched. Don’t operators normally ask who is calling before switching to the head boss?
An older man answers on the other side. “Mr. Inkleberry.”
Jack doesn’t know what to say. “Hi... umm... I met your son Marty a while ago and he gave me a ride in his limo...”
The rich man interrupts, “Jack was it? He told me about you. Thanks for standing up against that Magnemite for him. He’s had a fear of them for quite some time. He’s not with me at the moment, so what can I do for you?”
Ok, this is going better than he expected. “Well, I was wondering if I could have my Pokemon sent to your fabulous Ranch to be taken care of.”
“Sure. We will even do it for free for such a great person like you. I don’t know how you did it, but Marty changed since meeting you. More caring towards Pokemon and people and more responsibility for our business. He is becoming the son I’ve always wanted thanks to you.”
FREE! This is even better than a discount. “Oh thanks very much. And I’m glad I helped Marty change for the better. So, when can I send them over?”
“Give me one hour. I will personally set you up. Don’t worry, your Pokemon will be treated the best we have to offer.”
Jack is speechless. “Again, thanks very much. You have no idea how this helps me.”
With the final words, the two hang up and end communication.
Nurse Joy places a basket next to the trainer with Pokeballs filled to the top. “Your Pokemon are healed and doing fine.” Jack thanks her and places them in his pack and quickly dozes off to sleep, laying his head on the table while sitting in the chair.
Two hours pass and he wakes up and redials the phone. Talking to Mr. Inkleberry directly, they finish the contract and legal mumbo-jumbo. Of the eighteen Jack has, he decides to send over Miltank, Snorlax, Ariados, Stantler, Qwilfish, Butterfree, Beedrill, Sudowoodo, Meowth, Zubat, Muk and Farfetch’d. Which leaves the other seven, Vulpix, Gyarados, Magneton, Bellsprout, Gastly and Abra to stay with Jack for now.
With the day moving well into the afternoon, Jack’s second idea for the day, finding a location for his Pokemon being the first, moves into action. His Pokemon haven’t had any battles since his capture of Zubat and Abra a couple days ago. He also needs to warm up before braving the challenge of his first Johto League Gym to go up against.
(Cue 1v1 Battle with pokemaster148)
It’s a short win for Jack. But he needs another quick warm up.
(Cue 2v2 Battle with eric_is_cool258)
Once more, Jack proves to defeat his opponent. And now he seems ready to challenge the Gym.
“Oh, it’s late.” In fact, the sky has darkened a bit from the afternoon sky once above. Even though the trees around block most of the sky, it is still visible at the horizon. “I can’t battle on an empty stomach and if I eat now, the Gym will surely close when I’m finished.” Jack snaps his fingers in disgust. “Drat!”
So, back to the Pokecenter after his fast food dinner. Not knowing exactly what to do, he goes to sleep in the guest room.
It’s morning and Nurse Joy walks around the Pokecenter, having just opened the front doors. She peaks around one of the corners where the computers are to see Jack sitting in front of one. “Morning!”
Jack turns with a smile, “Hey! Door open?” Nurse Joy nods. Jack quickly finishes his typing, turns off the computer, and grabs his pack lying on the floor next to him. “Time for a gym battle.” With well wishes from Nurse Joy, Jack makes his walk to the Blackthorn Gym.
And with his new team of six, which will be facing the Gym, Jack has much more confidence in himself. “Dragon may be one of the toughest out there, but I will do it.”
Upon arrival of the Gym, a middle aged man in a brown shirt and lime green pants, whom was watering a plant, steps into Jack’s way. “Challenging the gym, are we?”
The man looks Jack over with ease. “Nope, don’t have it.”
Curiously, “Have what?”
“Respect for Dragon Pokemon.”
Probably not the smartest thing to say, but oh well. “What!!?? How could you say that? I am honored to be challenging this gym. It’s been my dream since I was a child to see a Dragonair. I’ve read everything about them and know all the legends. So yes, I do respect Dragon Pokemon.”
The man just stands there, rubbing his chin. “Hmm...” He looks at Jack again. “Then how many Dragon types do you have, huh?”
D’oh! “Well, I, um... I have a Gyarados. Gyarados is close enough.”
The man shakes his head side-to-side. He brings out a Pokeball. “Show me your respect.”
“What?” o O (Is he serious?) O o
“I have a gym battle to do first.”
Being persistent, the man stays in Jack’s way. “Ah, but how can you battle what you don’t respect?”
Caught! How can you get out of a phrase like that. “Ok, but let’s hurry.”
(Cue 1v1 Conference Battle with aaron_lover95)
Jack’s Gyarados against the man’s Gyarados. Only one Gyarados comes out, and that is our hero’s.
“So, you have some spark in you. But it is not enough to challenge this gym. If you want to respect Dragon Pokemon, you must be one with them.”
“Huh? Where does it say I have to do that in order to battle?”
The man smiles nervously, “Actually, the gym leader is on vacation so I’m stalling you.”
Jack sweatdrops and falls down. Now what? Wait... “I see. So... you can show me respect then?”
He nods. “I am Gorgi. We can talk inside.”
He grabs his handful of keys and finds the correct one. Leading to a different building, titled “Dragon Apprentices”, the two walk inside. Eventually, both sit on the floor at a table like the Japanese do. Shoes off, of course.
“I was an apprentice of the great Lance of the Elite Four. He is by far the best Dragon Trainer on this planet. And now I run this School for those who aspire to be Dragon Trainers.”
Sipping his cup of water, Jack looks around the room. Desks, white board, books... normal classroom items. “How about showing me the ropes. Some day I want to train Dragonair and having you teach me some pointers in Dragon etiquette would be nice.”
Gorgi nods, placing his tea down. “School is out for recess. I have some spare time on my hands. And you have a lot of spunk and fire. That’s a good quality, like I had.” He smirks to himself.
Jack jumps up all excited. “When do we start?”
“Tomorrow.” He scribbles an address on a piece of paper nearby. Meet me here and...” A faint buzzing starts, and Gorgi checks his Pager. “Oh, I forgot about the flowers I was watering. Must get back to duty.” He springs around the room and exits... “See you tomorrow.”
Jack takes the paper and holds it tightly. His dream of Dragonair will one day be fulfilled; and that day will hopefully be soon.
One month, then another month go by.
Jack wakes up from his sleep. The soft grass massages his back with ease. He blinks a few times, looking around. Dragonair and her two Dratini were playfully swimming around in the pond in front of them. The dragon paradise has been lovely today. Nearly perfect weather- not to cold, not to hot. “Two o’clock. Gorgi should be here by now.” Slight footsteps can be heard behind him. Jack moves his feet to a sitting mode as the person nears closer. A quick look back, “Hey Gorgi...”
Wait a minute... what is going on here? What happened during that two month period of time? It could have been something important and vital to the information that preceded. Well.... backtracking two months....
“Do you really think a Dragon would respect you? Come on, focus. Almost there.” Gorgi encourages his mental training toward Jack. The two of them are sitting near a waterfall lake surrounded by trees. The mist of the falling water surrounding the area with dampness. “Focus ‘til you can’t hear the water. All sounds disappear. Concentrate.” Both of them are in the meditating position. Jack tryies to concentrate, eyes closed with slight perspiration. Gorgi looks over at him. He grabs the book Meditate for Dummies
lying on the ground and stands up. *SLAM*
The book hits the floor with a loud noise and Jack flinches a little, remaining as much focus as he can. Gorgi smiles at his action. “Better than last week. Keep trying and see me in a couple days.” And Gorgi grabs his items and vacates the area.
Jack remains for an hour and finally snaps out of it. “Phew. That’s intense.”
The mental training continues the following week. Questioning everything from Dratini to Aerodactyl. To understand dragons, you must learn it all. All the stories, the legends and the myths. From fact to reality and back- this is the way to learn. And the end of the week, the meditating test again. This time, Jack doesn’t flinch nor hears a word what Gorgi says.
He wanders over to the dragon school to find Gorgi the next day. As always, he is watering the plants. “Do that too much and they die.”
“Yes, but it’s better to feed than to starve.”
Slipping off his shoes, Jack heads over and sits on a pillow. “Now what?”
Gorgi places the watering can down next to the Bonzai tree. Facing Jack, “You passed the mental test. Quite fast too for the couple meetings we have had.”
“The next part is physical. Meet me in two days for the trip not many see or even know about.”
Oh, is this exciting? Of course!
At the Pokecenter, Jack lay in his room, trying to sleep but too anxious to get any. “I can’t wait for two days.” He looks at the clock on the table next to the bed- 12:01. “Oh, it is tomorrow... One day left. Ha.” Eventually, like all people, he grabs some sleep.
A boat ride sure is peaceful, but traveling on a Gyarados’s back is extreme fun. The two of them ride their Gyarados down a stream. Eventually the stream hits a cave with stalactites and stalagmites all around the entrance.
“Welcome to Dragon’s Den!”
The large water fish continue swimming into the cave. A dull color, not too exciting, but caves are nice and cold to be in. Relaxing in a way. As the light lessons, it quickly becomes brighter again. The exit is near and... they are out. A ten minute journey of intenseness.
Huge acre of nature: grass, trees, flowers, a large lake, little patches of clouds in the sky with the sun up above. Both Gyarados pull to the side of the stream and Gorgi jumps off, recalling his Pokemon.
“Boats and people can’t normally make it through the cave. That is why not many people have been here.”
Jack slides off his Gyarados, splashing into the water. He stands up, shaking around. Gyarados’s Pokeball is put up, but...
Gorgi suggests, “No, leave him out. This is a Dragon’s paradise.”
Understanding, “Ok. Gyarados, enjoy the sights my friend.”
“Gggrrraawww...” and it swims off.
Jack follows Gorgi to the lake. “This is quite an amazing place. Untouched by people.”
“Yes. This is the place where Dragon Pokemon have been coming for numerous years. The Diglett here keep this place beautiful while the Zubat keep unwanted guests from going too far in the cave.”
Jack is still in awe of this place. But he will be even more awestruck in a little bit. “This is a very nice Pokemon paradise. I mean, Dragon paradise.” Gyarados dives underwater in the lake, like he senses something underneath.
Gorgi takes out a small whistle and blows it. The faint sound echos around the mountains protecting this place. The water in the lake before them slowly bubbles as something is about to surface.
“Oooo.” One Dratini.
“Eoouu.” Two Dratini.
“Eee.” And a Dragonair.
“Gwaaaa.” Not to mention, Jack’s Gyarados pops up.
Speechless. Utterly speechless. “You are so kidding, it’s not even funny.”
“We spent a month with mental, now for your month of physical. Interaction with Dragon types. Go ahead.”
Dragonair looks at Jack with it’s large eyes from however tall in the air it is. The Dratini simply swim around Dragonair. And Gyarados, looks at the Pokemon as enemies.
“Really? So that must be why you bought me a tent. I’m to sleep here....” Jack stops to see Gorgi fly away on the back of a Dragonite. “Ok then.” He takes a step forward and just like that, Dragonair and the two Dratini swim back, and dive underwater. Gyarados continues to follow. “No, Gyarados. They aren’t enemies.” It hesitates but trusts Jack and turns back. “We are guests here. Have fun.”