Last time, on A Pokémon Trainer Is You:
Which Pokémon will battle Ellis’ Beedrill, and how?
– Use Scallion the Bulbasaur, and try to think of an unconventional strategy.
A Beedrill is a tough opponent, especially for a Grass Pokémon like Scallion, and unlike the other bug catchers, Ellis seems to have experience to balance your knowledge of Pokémon and battle tactics. You’re going to need to pull some kind of bull$#!t to win this one. You glance around the clearing – tents, leaf litter, a couple of hillocks, tall trees all around…
You glance down at Scallion, catching his eye, and jerk your head at the tree branches. He follows your gaze and looks back at you in confusion. You jerk your head again and make a motion with your hands as if pulling on a rope. Scallion stares, baffled, then something clicks and his eyes widen. He looks at you nervously and tilts his head. You nod vigorously and give him a manic grin.
I gotta tell you, kid, I do not like where this is going.
Ellis takes his position opposite you and calls his Beedrill from its Pokéball. You shoot an encouraging look at Scallion, and he plods forward, extending his vines and striking a combat stance. Beedrill flies forward and hovers in front of Ellis, awaiting orders. Stacey and Dane watch, transfixed, and Abner raises his arm, ready to signal the start of the match.
At Abner’s shout, Ellis instantly calls for Beedrill to use Focus Energy, and it crosses its forelimb stingers and beats its wings faster, its eyes flashing with an inner red light. You order Scallion to open by tagging Beedrill with a Leech Seed, but it jukes to the right and dodges easily. Oh well; worth a try. Beedrill rushes forward, opening with Fury Attack, alternating between strikes with its forelimb and abdomen stingers. Out of the corner of your eye, you’re dimly aware of Ellis jabbing left and right in time with his rapid commands to Beedrill. His head’s in this fight. Time to get yours in there too.
You have Scallion thrust forward with both of his vines, getting around Beedrill’s stingers and jabbing it in the thorax. The attack doesn’t do much damage, but stuns Beedrill for the precious second of breathing time you need for your next move. Scallion lashes out with his vines again – not at Beedrill, but at the overhanging branches of one of the trees at the edge of the clearing. Ellis, surprised, briefly stops giving orders as Scallion grabs onto a sturdy branch and retracts his vines, pulling himself up into the air.
They recover quickly from their confusion, and Beedrill comes after Scallion with a Twineedle, but just as quickly you order him to shoot out another vine and grab onto another tree branch. Yelling in panic, Scallion nonetheless answers your every word, swinging from branch to branch on his vines, then looping around, releasing his hold and slamming into Beedrill with an aerial Tackle. Stacey’s eyes go as wide as dinner plates, and Abner’s jaw drops open. You shout more commands. Scallion backflips off Beedrill and shoots out another vine, grabbing onto another tree and staying in the air. He has absolutely no idea what he’s doing, but you call out every action in clipped syllables, and he follows instantly – left vine, right vine, swing, release, grab the next tree, left vine, release, right vine, swing, grab, fire another Leech Seed in mid air, what the hell, why not? Your Minun, Nancy, is leaping up and down and chanting in time with your words, every syllable sending sparks flying from her cheeks. Frankly you have no idea whether she’s helping, but you aren’t about to tell her to stop. Ellis and Beedrill try another Fury Attack, as Scallion flies around the edges of the clearing with all the grace of a drunken Pelipper carrying a beakful of ball bearings. Given even a few moments to observe his erratic movements, you suspect they’ll adapt quickly, so time is of the essence. You have Scallion Tackle Beedrill again as he yanks himself past it through the air, then make a tight swing and hit it again before it can turn around, slamming it in the back, right at the base of its wings. That seems to do the trick, and Beedrill’s wings crumple, fluttering erratically as it crashes to the ground. Scallion, for his part, hits the ground pretty hard as well, but somehow has enough strength left to get to his feet. After a few moments of perplexed silence, Abner yells out:
“That was SO COOL!”
The instant the battle ends, your knees give out, and you sink to the ground, trembling slightly. You manage to crawl over to Scallion and give him a quick once-over. He’s exhausted and can barely stand, but has miraculously suffered only a few bruises and two glancing blows from Beedrill’s stingers.
Ellis walks up to you, his injured Beedrill clinging to his left bicep as he steadies it with his other hand.
“That was…” he shakes his head, bewildered. “I have no idea what that was.” He smiles. “But it might have been the best battle I’ve ever had.” You return the smile, and consider standing up, but decide that the ground is pretty comfortable for now. You’ve heard that trainers in intense battles lend some of their own strength to their Pokémon, but you never realised that that was meant quite this… literally. Pull that kind of $#!t when you’re on your own in the wilderness and there’ll be trouble, mark my words. Fortunately, you’re not on your own, and Stacey has a first aid kit and is eager to see to your Pokémon’s injuries.
It’s getting late in the afternoon, so the five of you settle in and start preparing an evening meal to share with all your Pokémon (well, except the ones who live in cocoons and don’t eat). You’re basically putting together a stew of several different canned vegetables, some that you brought from Viridian City and others that you swiped from the rest stop at the entrance to the forest, but Stacey also had the foresight to bring some spices from her parents’ kitchen, and Dane has collected some herbs and wild mushrooms (the others assure you that he knows the plants and fungi of this area very well, and has never poisoned them). It ends up tasting surprisingly good! In conversation over dinner, the others decide that because you won their tournament, you should be the first to suggest activities for tomorrow morning.
6 thoughts on “A Pokémon Trainer is You! XVIII: Scallion of the Apes?”
Let’s explore the deep forest! Maybe our Pokémon trainer can meet up with Larry?
Hate to break it to you, kid, but Larry ain’t coming back. Poor dumb bastard…
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(Did Larry, by any chance, keep any kinds of valuables on his person the last time he was seen? There might still be good reason to venture into the deep woods.)
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Someday we might actually even get a badge!
Might not be the boulder badge, we’ll somehow wander to Unova first and get it there, but a badge is a badge!
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(Also, very cool strategy for Scallion! Makes me wish they /did more/ with the Bulbasaur line’s prehensile vines in the games, too.)
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