Sunday, April 18, 2010

Pokémon: The Golden Apocalypse, Chapter Twenty

Red pulled himself to the edge of the ledge and looked down. Nyoromo was stranded on a lower platform, and the ape-like pokémon were only seconds below. Knowing it was too late, knowing that it would only serve to endanger himself more, he lifted himself to his feet, grabbed a handhold to his right, and swung off the ledge to climb down to the poliwag. His feet scrabbled against the rock face to find purchase, succeeding after only an agonizing second. Red took a breath and took his first step down.
His muscles rebelled, tensing and relaxing in mad fits. Darkness consumed his vision, and blood thundered in his ears. His lungs seized up, and he lacked the will to find his breath again. He felt rock slip past his hand as it came free from the wall.
His last sensation before unconsciousness was that of freefall.

Green emerged from the forest and looked west over the Fallen Viridian. Though not as tall as the southern cliffs, the drop here was still quite formidable, and for that Green was glad. Even as the light decayed, he managed to make out the forms of pokémon rummaging through the ruins.
"Dim." The command was issued quietly, but fiercely, and Hitokage complied, his tail's flame diminishing to little more than a candle flame. Green waited for his eyes to adjust to the darkness, only to realize that the Tojo Mountains made for rapid sunsets.
He cursed, abandoning hope of seeing the city and turning back to the forest to make camp. He looked at Hitokage to instruct him, but a flash from behind stopped him. Light brighter than day flooded around him, casting his pokémon and the forest into sharp relief, and making his shadow grow and dance fiendishly. His pupils contracted painfully, and even as the light dimmed he fell and covered his face with his sleeve. There was a moment of silence, followed by a roar loud enough to justify the light. Then the forest fell into absolute silence.
Part of Green wanted to stay like that, but his survival instinct screamed at him to run. He rose, wiping his watering eyes, and had just taken a step to the forest when the light came again. This time, he kept his eyes open and glanced back, despite the pain it brought.
What he saw terrified him. Two gargantuan beasts, were weaving back and forth above the mountain range. Their silhouettes danced and turned in the glow, and even as Green watched a third rose from some hidden valley. It's maw began to open as the light faded. Just as the scene faded to darkness, it exploded into sharp relief as a beam of light lanced forth from the thing's mouth to explode on something surrounding the largest creature, which resembled a bird of some kind.
Green wanted to watch more, despite his eyes' protest, but as a delayed report came from the blast he hadn't seen, his instinct overtook his sense and he fled into the trees, Hitokage on his heels.

The girl reached the edge of the forest as the colors of sunset began to paint the sky. Despite her pokémon's anxiousness, she sat on a nearby rock to catch her breath.
Whatever you want it can wait until- what's that smell? She sniffed the air, and felt the bile rise in her throat. She glanced about and found the source quickly. A small scattering of partially dissolved chunks of something organic was on the ground nearby. She took a step towards it, noticing something encrusted over it, as the wind picked up and brought a fresh whiff to her nose. She gagged, fighting her bodies urge to eject its stomachs contents. Th last thing she wanted to do now was vomit.
Vomit! That could be what this was. She remembered the smell from sickrooms when Pallet faced the Plague in her youth. But why would a human's vomit be out here?
A shriek from below answered her question. She hurried to where her pokémon danced frantically about the edge of the cliff and looked down. The shriek had come from a hideous ape-thing ascending the face of the cliff. It had almost reached a ledge where
The boy and his poliwag! With no way to help them, and no desire to watch, the girl slipped back into the forest, and found a tree-nest half a mile away.

Nyoromo prodded Red urgently with his foot, but the boy refused to wake. A shriek from nearby startled the poor thing, and it jumped, tripping over its feet and rolling back. It was stopped by a furry mass as large as it was. It scrabbled back as another rose over the ledge and settled upon it.
They were hands. Nyoromo could see the fingers tighten as the creature below began to pull itself up. The little poliwag reacted instinctively, and a lone bubble shot from its mouth. It slowed quickly in the air, but continued to drift lazily as the beast pulled its face above the ledge. Just as its snarling mouth was revealed, the bubble popped right between the thing's eyes. A noxious-looking green vapor rose from the spot, and the ape shrieked and clasped its hands stupidly over the point of impact. With nothing to secure it to the ledge, it fell.
Nyoromo bubbled happily. It turned to Red and as it did so saw three more apes climbing over the ledge. It tried to expel another large bubble, but nothing came. Nyoromo hurried back over to Red and poked him.
"Wag? Wag?" It's urgent cries went unheard. It turned to face the rising danger, but the animal forms were cast into silhouette by a glow from behind. The light faded, but the pokémon remained motionless. Then, as a crash shattered the air, they dropped to the ground and hurried to find shelter. Nyoromo watched them go.
"Poli!" it cried defiantly, but as the next flash came, the little pokémon scurried under Red's arm and cowered.

Away in her shelter, the girl shivered as she dreamt about the fate of the boy and his diminutive pokémon. When the first crash woke her, she slept no more.

"Dim, I said, dim!" The terror was creeping back into his voice, but Green didn't care. He didn't dare think of what would happen if those things found them.
"Char." The pitiful pokémon whined as its pilot flame dropped another level closer to death. Something in its voice touched Green.
"You did your best. Don't hurt yourself." Shocked by his own compassion to a mere pokémon, Green turned over and pondered himself to sleep in the crashing night.


Qupar said...

huh, interesting, not sure what the light thing is

Reogan said...

I would think it relatively apparent to anyone familiar with the genre.

Elphaba said...

Hehe, not me! That's okay, though. I like it, and I'm glad Nyoromo has a defense mechanism! Whoo!