Monday, March 07, 2011

Pokémon: The Golden Apocalypse, Chapter Twenty-Six

For a moment, all was still. The birds seemed still as statues, an illusion made all the more real by the few wisps of fog that remained. Red slowly tightened his hand on his quarry, and waited. His slow breathing and frantic heartbeat were the only noises in his ears.
Then the eternity ended. With a cry, a large pidgeotto flapped down from a branch above. Reacting purely by instinct, Red hurled the stone he still clutched at the bird, missing it but causing it to veer away. Red scrambled to his feet, as the forest erupted into a maelstrom of feather and beak.
Even before the attack reached its height, Red could hardly keep on his feet as his assailants battered him with wings and talons. A larger pidgeotto flapped towards his face and cut a gash on his cheek with a razor-sharp wing.
The storm began to close about him, and suddenly Red realized the constant pummeling threatened the little pokémon in his pack as well. Still running, he tried to slip it off and shelter it in his arms. As he did so, a mass of feathers collided with his face, so disorienting him that he tripped over a protruding root and fell to the ground. Terrified, he curled up around his pack and closed his eyes.
After a painful minute, the birds' assault began to weaken. Soon after, there was nothing at all but a few faint flutterings. Slowly and carefully, Red opened his eyes. He sat up cautiously, and flinched as a bird flapped overhead. He followed its path with his eyes until it passed over him. When he turned, he saw it join a flock of its brethren.
At least thirty pidgey and pidgeotto were perched on the branches before him. Nearest to Red, hardly ten feet away, was a terrifying pidgeotto at least four feet tall. Its unblinking stare unnerved Red, who could do nothing but stare back. This continued for some time, and Red's leg began to cramp. He slowly shifted it, and began to lose his balance. He quickly tried to right himself, and in that second, the pidgeotto gave a shrill cry.
As one, all the birds spread their wings back, flapping to generate a massive gust.
The wind was of such strength that Red actually flipped backwards before landing braced against an ancient tree. Twigs, clods of dirt, and small stoned battered his face, and instinctively he tried to crawl back tighter against the tree. As he pushed, a small section of the ground gave way, and a small opening was opened to what must have once been a burrow in the tree's roots.
Red through in his pack and then turned to crawl in himself.  Though a few unearthed stems prodded him, he made it through without much trouble.
He sat in near total darkness, listening to the roar outside as Nyoromo butted softly against his leg. Almost without noticing what his hands were doing, Red scooped up the little pokémon and held it tight. He watched the flow of detritus from the cavern's mouth slowly taper off to nothing, and held his breath as the last pebble slowly bounced down.
A scratching sound came from the mouth. The scant light of the cavern became weaker as a large shadow blotted the back wall. A bird was hopping down the short tunnel. Red saw the first sharp talon come into view, and then the bird - a pidgeotto - bent it's head down to peer in.
With a loud "Poli!", Nyoromo sprang up and spat a bubble at the intruding pokémon. It recoiled and flapped back out, squawking.
Red looked in amazement at the pokémon he had thought to be useless until now.

No comments: