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My Best Friends
by EmperMaxis@aol.com
 

   Chapter 10

   The waves crash against the shore of Seafoam Island West on a bright,
   sunny afternoon. This famous beach resort is known throughout the world of
   pokemon as the greatest surfing spot on the planet, as well as having the
   most hotels and shops. Marinas filled with boats, boardwalks covered in
   stores and restaurants, giant malls, 3-D theatres, and endless towering
   hotels, all on one island. Tourists flock from the four corners of the globe
   to visit this magical land. And on this particular day, four young trainers
   embark on the next step in their pokemon journey.
   "Arm and arm, we'll win the fight~! It's always been our dream~!" A
   strawberry-blond girl hums to herself as she, accompanied by her Chansey
   nurse and Jynx, walks down the ramp of the ferry to the dock. Turning, she
   calls up to her friends still on the boat. "Hey, hurry up, guys! We don't
   have all day!"
   "What are you talking about, Lizzie?" A spikey-haired youth around the
   same age rolls his eyes, coming down the same ramp. An Eevee skips after him.
   "You heard the captain. We have a week, at least!"
   "True..." Another boy, perhaps a year younger than the one before him,
   agrees as he disembarks carrying an enormous backpack. "But, Rex, this is the
   peak of the tourist season, and most of the hotels are probably full. We'll
   be lucky if the Pokemon Center has any room left!"
   "Unfortunately, Jeff," A girl with dark hair interjects, coming behind
   them. "There is no pokemon center on Seafoam Island."
   "What???" The three others cry out in unison.
   "Katrina, what do you mean, there's no pokemon center?" The spikey-haired
   teen asks, alarmed.
   "Simply that there is no Center on either isle." The ninja-master's
   daughter shrugs. "I learned this as a fact when I came with my father some
   time ago. Apparently, the local authorities value wealthy tourists more than
   regular pokemon trainers."
   "Oh, great!" Jeff exclaims, slapping himself in the forehead. The action
   causes him to lose balance of the enormous pack on his shoulders, and he
   nearly falls off the dock.
   "Whoa, easy there, Jeff!" Rex calls, grabbing his friend by the arm.
   "Don't want to go in the drink, huh?"
   "Well, while you two are goofing off," Lizzie stamps her foot
   impatiently. "We should be checking all the hotels to see if any have room
   for the four of us!"
   "Jynx, Jyyynx." The siren pokemon reminds her, tapping Lizzie on the
   shoulder. It gestures to itself and to Chansey.
   "Pardon me," Lizzie smiles graciously. "Four humans, and three pokemon."
   "Chan-sey!" The pink, egg-shaped pokemon chirps.
   "Vee! Ee-Veee!" The furry brown pokemon squeals.
   "Arrr, if ye be lookin fer a good stay," The captain calls from the top
   deck. "I suggest ye look in the "Seacliff Inn". Me brother-in-law runs in
   (the deadbeat blaggard!) er, and he'll cut ye a good deal!"
   "Uh, thanks, Captain." Lizzie replies, forcing a smile. She waits until
   the old sailor hobbles off the deck to giggle.
   "All in favor of going to the beach hotels?" Rex asks. Everyone raises
   his or her hand. "Then let's go!"

   "So... he isn't angry at us?" A tall young man asks his female
   accomplice. The sun gleams off of his yellow hair, parted down the middle.
   "Not from what my sister said," A beautiful young Hispanic woman replies,
   shaking her head. Both are in their early twenties, and have the physiques of
   models. "Apparently, he still holds us in high regard, especially since-"
   "The Saffron Caper?" Artemus asks, grinning. "Yes, I knew that would keep
   us in his favor for some time."
   "Our greatest triumph!" Felice agrees, smiling. Then she turns sober.
   "But, Artemus... If we don't bring the Boss something extraordinary soon, we
   may fall out of his good graces."
   "I know..." Artemus frowns, nodding. "I know."

   "What do you mean you don't have any rooms?" Jeff exclaims, slamming his
   fist on the counter. He and Katrina stand in the crowded lobby of "The
   Seafoam Plaza", one of the largest hotels on Seafoam Island West. "This hotel
   is HUGE! You can't tell me there is not one room that's empty!"
   "I am sorry, sir," The aloof concierge says snobbishly. "But this is the
   peak of the tourist season, and every room is full."
   "(sigh) Come on, Katrina." Jeff groans, walking away in defeat. Together,
   the two of them walk through the revolving doors and onto an immense plaza
   outside. "Looks like this one doesn't have any room either."
   "Do not be discouraged, Jeff." Katrina insists as they stroll over to a
   large fountain in the middle of the square. They both sit down on the rim,
   watching children splash in the water. Couples pass by and toss coins into
   the basin. She smiles. "We will find one that has a vacancy. The day is young
   and the island is large."
   "Yeah, I guess you're right." Jeff nods. He squints against the sun as he
   watches kids flying kites acrosst the square. "Say, what time is it?"
   "Two fifteen." Katrina answers without looking at her watch. "We have an
   hour before Rex and Lizzie will meet with us here at the fountain. Perhaps we
   should find something to occupy ourselves in the meantime?"
   "Uh, sure." Jeff agrees, arching one eyebrow. "Katrina, how did you know
   what time it was without checking your watch?"
   "By monitoring the position of the sun, factoring in the percentage of
   variation according to the tilt of the hemisphere..."
   "Um, perhaps I don't need to no this." Jeff laughs. The two of them get
   up and walk towards the boardwalk, eager to enjoy the sights of the tropical
   resort. Perhaps their friends will have better luck finding a hotel?

   "AAUGH!" Rex shouts. "I can't believe this!"
   "Chill out, Rex." Lizzie rolls her eyes. "People are staring!"
   The two trainers, accompanied by an Eevee, Chansey, and Jynx, stand in
   the lobby of "The Grand Plaza", an immense hotel right on the beach. While
   Rex rants about their lack of vacancy, Lizzie calmly files her nails. Now,
   however, the young man is getting too loud for the comfort of everyone in the
   vicinity.
   "I don't care what you say, buddy," Rex growls at the man behind the
   counter in a ridiculous staff uniform. "There has got to be one room in this
   entire hotel that isn't occupied!"
   "I'm sorry, sir." He says obnoxiously. "But we have no room available at
   present. If you would like, I can take your name and phone-"
   "I know, I know!" Rex groans. "You'll take my name and phone number and
   call me as soon as there is an opening, blah blah blah! Don't you get it? My
   friends and I are stranded on this island, and while these aren't exactly
   primitive settings, we have NO PLACE TO STAY!!! So, unless you can just blink
   and make a Pokemon Center pop up on the beach, we need a ROOM!"
   "Rex, come on," Lizzie sighs, tugging on his shoulder. "They're not going
   to give us a- Jynx?? What are you doing?"
   As the two confused trainers look on, Jynx leans across the counter and
   looks deep into the receptionist's eyes. The startled man blinks and steps
   back. Smiling slyly, Jynx purses its puffy, red lips. Then, without warning,
   it lunges. The man is smacked right on the cheek by the siren, leaving an
   imprint of red lipstick behind.
   "Jynx! What's gotten into you?" Lizzie exclaims, tugging the pokemon back
   over the counter. "I am so sorry, sir, I... I..."
   She lets the sentence hang in the air. The man behind the counter stands
   erect, like a zombie. Then, all of a sudden, a dreamy look comes into his
   eyes and he relaxes. He smiles broadly. Then, he falls to his knees before
   the pokemon and its trainer.
   "Oh, forgive me, madam!" He appologizes, kisses Jynx's hand. "I never
   meant to offend you! Please, take the penthouse suite, free of charge!"
   "But I thought you said you were booked solid..." Rex asks, confused.
   "Oh, that!" He laughs. "That's just what we say to undesirables and
   riff-raff! You fine people are more than welcome to stay, and after my
   brutish behavior I couldn't let you pay a cent for the room! Stay as long as
   you like, gentle patrons."

   "Venemoth, Poison Powder!" A young trainer shouts at the top of his
   lungs. His Bug-type pokemon eagerly complies by sprinkling a cloud of
   venemous pollen over its opponent.
   "Poliwrath, Hi Jump Kick." Katrina orders. Her toadlike pokemon
   obediently leaps into the air in a fighting pose. It streaks through the
   cloud of toxic dust and strikes Venemoth squarely in the chest. The
   Water-type quickly follows up with a DoubleSlap attack, followed by a karate
   chop.
   "Vennnoooooo!" The bug hisses, crashing onto the boardwalk.
   "Nooooo!" The little boy, no older than ten, wails. "Venomoth, are you
   all right?"
   "He will be fine, I promise." Katrina nods sagely. "I have studied the
   Venomoth species extensively, and it is quite a resilient hybrid. I suggest
   you use a few potions on it and give it plenty of rest before you challenge
   anyone else."
   "Okay, Ms. Katrina." The little boy smiles. "I know I shouldn't get so
   upset about losing a match, but I really, really wanted my Soul Badge. I
   hoped I would have at least four by Christmas, but so far I only have two."
   "Which ones?" Jeff asks, walking up with two snow cones from a snack
   stand.
   "Lemme see..." He takes off his cap and scratches his fuzzy, yellow hair.
   Then he snaps his finger. "Oh, here! Lemme show you!"
   The little boy reaches into his pocket, and pulls out an envelope. From
   it, he produces a shimmering badge that shines with a dozen different colors,
   along with a badge in the shape of a raindrop.
   "Ahh, so you have defeated Erika, Gym Leader of Celadon City." Katrina
   arches her eyebrows. "Very impressive. And you also possess a Cascade Badge
   from the Cerulean Gym? I see you are quite talented for one so young."
   "Garsh, thanks!" He giggles. "Well, someday I'm gonna have all eight
   badges, and then I'm gonna beat the Elite Four on Indyglow Plateau!"
   Katrina supresses a giggle. Jeff chokes on his snow cone. Neither can
   help it; the kid's just too cute!
   "I'm sure you will." Katrina smiles, crouching down to look the boy in
   the eyes. "And one day, you will earn a Soul Badge from me."
   "Really?" His eyes get big and watery. Then he hugs her warmly. "Oh,
   thankyouthankyouthankyou! You just watch! I'm gonna be the Pokemon Leaue
   Master, someday!"
   Recalling his Venomoth into its pokeball, he scurries away down the
   boardwalk. The two trainers watch him go.
   "Does he remind you of someone?" Jeff arches an eyebrow. "A certain
   spikey-haired someone we both know?"
   "Ahh... this is true." Katrina nods. Then she giggles. "Hee hee! I wonder
   what Rex Stone was like when he was that boy's age?"
   "Well, I can tell you that!" A voice comes from behind them. They both
   spin around to see a young man of around 21 with spikey hair, much like
   Rex's, except that this person's is bright red.
   "Who are you?" Jeff asks, stepping forward. "...You look awfully
   familiar..."
   "Howdy! My name's Pyro!" He grins broadly. "Pyro Stone."
   "STONE??" Katrina asks, eyeing the man with great interest. "As in, from
   Stone Town?"
   "Yep." Pyro nods. Then he laughs. "And boy, could I tell you some stories
   about Rex! Talk about your typical little brothers, this guy-"
   "Ex-cuuse me?" Jeff exclaims. "Do you mean, Rex is your brother?"
   "Oh, right!" Pyro shrugs. "Forgot to mention that. Anyway, the kid's in
   town? How'd he get here?"
   "Um... Uh... I... Er..." Jeff sputters. For some reason, the idea that
   Rex had siblings never dawned on him before now.
   "Hey, guys!" Pyro calls, waving at a group of tourists coming out of a
   surf shop. "Over here!"
   Three others approach, two the same age as Pyro, one about sixteen. They
   all have strange hairstyles.
   "Hey, Pyro, what's up?" The one with blue hair asks.
   "Guys, you won't believe this," Pyro laughs. "But baby brother's here!"
   "Rex??" The one with yellow hair exclaims. "No way! Where?"
   "Here! On Seafoam!" Pyro says.
   "Whoa!" The brown-haired one says. "How'd he get here?"
   "I dunno, ask these two." He points to Jeff and Katrina.
   "Allow me to introduce myself." Katrina says. "I am Katrina Nagaki, and
   this is Jeff Fuji. We are friends of Rex."
   "Hey." The brown-haired one shakes her hand. "I'm Mikey. The one with the
   surfing shirt is Rainer, the dude with the porcupine hair is Sparky, and you
   already met Pyro."
   "So... you four are..." Jeff says thoughtfully. "The Four Eevee Brothers?"
   "The four and only!" Rainer grins. They all laugh.
   "Then... you guys are all pokemon trainers, too?" Jeff asks.
   "Well, we used to be." Sparky explains. "But we gave that up a long time
   ago."
   "Yeah, after we got all eight badges." Pyro agrees. "We just got tired of
   it. Besides, we three went to college, and Mikey over there would rather
   breed Eevee than collect different pokemon."
   "Hey, how's Rex handling his pokemon?" Mikey asks abruptly. "After all,
   the four of them were my Eevee's puppies."
   "Uh, great, I guess." Jeff shrugs. "I'm not really into stone-induced
   evolutions. I collect Bug-types."
   "That's cool." Mikey nods. Then he grins slyly. "How many badges does our
   brother have? 6? 7?"
   "Five." Jeff answers.
   "Just five???" They all burst out laughing.
   "And he's been on the road for a whole year??" Pyro exclaims.
   "What's he been doing?" Rainer asks. "Chasing Pidgey?"
   They laugh hysterically for several minutes until they finally calm down.
   "So, where is our little bro?" Sparky asks, wiping a tear from his eye.
   "We're about to go meet him in Fountain Plaza." Katrina answers checking
   her watch. "You are all welcome to come with us if you like."
   "Excellent!" Rainer laughs.
   Together, the six of them trek back along the boardwalk to the huge plaza.

   "Hey, guys!" Rex calls, running across the plaza to his friends. Jeff and
   Katrina are sitting in front of the fountain, just where they'd agreed to
   meet. "Wait till I tell you this! I found-"
   Suddenly, four figures walk up out of nowhere and stop in front of the
   fountain. Rex screeches to a stop, the rubber soles of his shoes leaving skid
   marks on the pavement.
   "Oh no!! It- it..." He sputters in horror. "It's YOU!!!
   AAAUUUUGGGHHH!!!!!!"
   "Hello little brother!" They all say in unison. Grinning sadistically
   they step forward. "What are the odds?"
   "Stay away! Get back!" He yells in terror, stumbling back a few paces.
   "Don't come any closer! Get back! GET BACK! HEEEEEEEELP!"
   He whirls around and dashes across the plaza, screaming wildly. The Eevee
   Brothers sprint after him, quickly outdistancing their younger brother.
   "I've got him!" Pyro calls. "Ow! Hold still, you little-"
   "I wonder if we shouldn't have brought them?" Katrina whispers to Jeff.
   Meanwhile, standing with Jynx and Chansey at the double doors of "The
   Grand Plaza", Lizzie merely watches as Rex is run down and tackled by four
   older boys.
   "Chan-seyyyy...." Her egg-shaped nurse shakes its head.
   "Jynx..." The siren mutters, rolling its eyes.
   "Ee-vee...." Rex's furry little Eevee sighs, watching from its vantage
   point atop Chansey's head. As they all look on, it's memory drifts back
   through time to the days when Rex was younger...

   Back on the boardwalk, a sinister conference is being made between two
   members of the insidious criminal organization, Team Rocket.
   "I heard them, Artemus." Felice smiles slyly. "I was right here, ordering
   a smoothie at this booth, when I heard that voice."
   "The boy?" Artemus replies, shocked. He narrows his eyes. "Are you
   certain?"
   "I know the voice of the only trainer to defeat me, Artemus." Felice
   answers coldly. Then she smiles. "He is here, on this island."
   "How fortunate." Artemus muses, rubbing his chin. "We simply must show
   the lad all the sights around the island."
   "Yes, yes." Felice agrees. "Perhaps a one-way cruise on a catamaran."
   "An excellent idea, partner!" Artemus grins. "And this time, there shall
   be no unexpected reinforcements for our young adversary. This time, the
   advantage is ours!"
   "Hahahahahaha!" Felice cackles wickedly.
   The two criminals laugh maniacally, there voices echoing over the waves.
 
 
 

   Chapter Eleven

   (Note: Before this chapter begins, I feel it necessary to say that I did not
   invent the characters Cordelia and Jethro as appeared in Chapter Nine, but
   obtained permission to use them from Atticus987, a fellow pokemaniac whose
   fanfic runs parallel to mine.)

   How could a sound be more annoying? It is all Rex can ponder as he sits
   on his bed in the hotel room he shares with Jeff. While he ties his hiking
   shoes, he can't help but notice the constant, agonizing sound of Jeff's
   toothbrush rubbing steadily against his teeth. Swish, swish, swish, swish...
   the sound comes like the tempo of a metronome, like the ticking of a clock.
   On and on, ceaseless in its tormenting, the terrible sound comes forth.
   Finally, Rex can't take it anymore. He snaps.
   "WILL YOU PLEASE CUT IT OUT!" Rex screams. His voice carries through the
   door and echoes down the hall. Jeff, toothbrush in hand, peers around the
   corner.
   "Man, what's eating you?" He asks, arching an eyebrow.
   "YOU, that's what!" Rex snarls.
   "'That's who'." Jeff corrects. "The correct pronoun agreement would be,
   'who', not 'what'."
   "Don't lecture me on adverbs!" Rex yells.
   "Predicate nominatives..." Jeff shrugs. "But that's beside the point."
   Rex slaps his forehead in anguish.
   "Wow, you're really serious, aren't you?" Jeff exclaims, now flossing.
   "You're getting so worked up over a simple toothbrush."
   "Well, if some people wouldn't act like obnoxious jerks all the time,"
   Rex mutters.
   "Yes, I couldn't agree more." Jeff cuts in pointedly. Rex winces. "The
   point is, Rex, you have been stressed out all morning and all yesterday
   afternoon. It's like something's driving you nuts, but the rest of us don't
   even notice it. What can possibly be making you so upset?"
   As if on cue, someone pounds on the door.
   "Hey, little bro!" Someone's voice, Pyro's, comes from outside. "Rainer
   and I are going into town to sign up for the surf contest! Wanna come, or are
   you still afraid of widdle biddy fishies?"
   "Are you nuts?!?" Rex shouts. "It's 7 AM! I haven't even had breakfast
   yet!"
   "Aw, is widdle baby brudder hungwy today?" Pyro asks in the perfect
   big-brother tone. "Diddums stay up too late wast night with all the grownups?"
   Rex yanked the door open.
   "What do you mean, 'grownups'?" Rex snarls. "I'M not the one who used to
   wear Slowpoke pajamas to-"
   Abruptly, Pyro cuffs his hand over Rex's mouth. Then he quickly applies a
   headlock and bodyslams Rex onto the carpeted floor.
   "Pathetic, really." Jeff whispers to Eevee.
   "Ee-vee." The pokemon agrees, rolling its eyes.

   "So," Lizzie says, taking a bite of toast. "How long do you think it'll
   be until he cracks?"
   She, Jeff, and Katrina sit a table in the hotel restaurant. Chansey
   explains the concept of a menu to Jynx in a nearby booth. Jeff happily scarfs
   down an omelette while the girls make small talk.
   "Perhaps until lunch." Katrina speculates, sipping hot herbal tea. "No
   longer."
   "I dunno." Jeff says between bites. "He'll probably lose it by eleven."
   The threesome is interrupted by the sound of footsteps hurrying down the
   stairs. First comes Sparky, followed by Rex, and tailed by Rainer, Pyro, and
   Mikey.
   "Sparky, give it back!" Rex shouts.
   "What's wrong, Rex?" Sparky asks, feigning innocence. "Did you lose
   something?"
   "My wallet." Rex growls. "And I didn't lose it. You took it!"
   "I don't know what you're-" Sparky starts. Without warning, he flings a
   small, red parcel over Rex's head. Pyro grabs it in midair.
   "My pokedex!" Rex yells. "Hand it over, Pyro!"
   "No way, little bro!" He laughs. Yawning, he holds the gadget above his
   head. Rex leaps for it, but can't reach.
   "Pyro, I mean it!" Rex clenches his teeth. "If you don't give that to me
   right now, I'll-"
   "Rainer, go long!" He calls suddenly. He throws the pokedex across the
   room, neatly landing in Rainer's hands.
   "Guys, this is getting old!" Rex groans. "Even you must be getting tired
   of it by now."
   The four older siblings stop for a moment of quiet contemplation.
   "NO WAY!" They all laugh. Then, the proceed to dash through the cafe door
   and sprint down the pool deck.
   "Come back here!" Rex shouts after them in hot pursuit.
   Jeff, Lizzie, and Katrina merely watch him go. Then, as if nothing had
   transpired, they return to eating.
   "I give him an hour." Lizzie says simply.
   "Gosh, I'm not sure he'll last until breakfast is over." Jeff states,
   taking a bite of bacon.

   Moments later, at the beach, Rex gives up his hopeless pursuit. Panting,
   he sits down on a bench.
   "All right, guys," Rex groans. "What do I have to do to get my Pokedex
   back?"
   "I thought he'd never ask!" Pyro chuckles, turning around. "It's simple,
   baby bro. You enter the surf competition; we give you your Pokedex. Easy as
   falling off a log."
   "Except that I don't have a surfboard," Rex observes.
   "Neither did I, when I came here on my Pokemon Journey." Rainer taunts.
   "But I still surfed here. I used my Vaporeon!"
   "Vaporeon?" Rex arches an eyebrow. "As a surfboard? ... All right, I'll
   bite. And if I surf using Vaporeon, you'll give me my Pokedex?"
   "You got it, Rexster!" Mikey teases.
   "Wa-hoo." Rex mutters.
   "Don't take it so hard!" Sparky laughs, slapping him on the back. "Let's
   just go out there and my the best Eevee brother win!"
   "You four are the Eevee Brothers." Rex stated blandly. "I'm the 'runt'.
   Remember?"
   "Yeah, I know!" Pyro laughs. "Hahaha! I kill me!"
   "If only." Rex thought.

   While the five brothers all head toward the beach, the other three
   trainers, accompanied by Eevee, Chansey, and Jynx, stroll along the boardwalk.
   "Pretty cool, huh?" Lizzie asks, gesturing to all of the shops and
   restaurants along the pier. "This is totally awesome! I mean, I've never seen
   so many people in one place before!"
   "It is... unique." Katrina nods. She wears dark sunglasses and a large
   hat. "Do you think anyone will recognize me as the daughter of Master Koga? I
   do not wish to fight another battle as long as I am here..."
   "No one will recognize you, Katrina." Lizzie rolls her eyes. "Gosh, I
   barely recognize you without a kimono!"
   "Hey, girls, check this out!" Jeff calls from one of the nearby stands.
   Holding a pokeball firmly in his hand, he hurls it at a neat stack of milk
   bottles. It bounces off harmlessly. "Shoot! Let me try again." He hits it
   dead center. It rolls onto the floor. "What? No way! Okay, one more try."
   Again, it hits hard and in the middle. It ricochets off, flying right back at
   Jeff, who ducks, narrowly avoiding the berserk ball.
   "Man, that thing must be rigged!" Jeff fumes. "There is no way I couldn't
   have knocked over even one bottle!"
   "Tough luck, kid." The owner of the booth shrugs. "You must not have a
   very strong pitching arm."
   "Whaddaya mean?" Jeff asks. He pulls back his sleeve and flexes his
   muscle. "Look at that! Right there!"
   "Uh, yeah, Jeff." Lizzie smiles nervously, pulling him away from the
   stand. "I'm sure you did just fine."
   "I would like to attempt it." Katrina states, handing a quarter to the
   vendor.
   "Certainly, little lady." He replies, smiling. He hands her a pokeball.
   "Take your best shot!"
   For an moment, Katrina is motionless. Her eyes fixated the stack of
   bottles and draw a straight path from the bottles to the ball in her hand.
   She closes her eyes and takes a deep breath. Then, in an instant, she hurls
   the ball at the stack. It streaks through the air at blinding speed and rams
   the bottles dead center. The stack crumbles, bottles flying in every
   direction. Jeff's mouth hits the floor.
   "Good job, lass!" The owner cheers. He reaches up to a shelf and pulls
   down a giant stuffed Snorlax doll. "Here, it's yours. You've earned it."
   "Thank you sir." She smiles graciously, taking the doll.
   "You're quite welcome," He replies. "Katrina Koga."
   Her eyes go wide. Every child and teen on the boardwalk turns to face
   her. She blushes. Then, in the blink of an eye, she bolts down the boardwalk,
   everyone following her, shouting for a match.
   "Let's go!" Lizzie yells, grabbing Jeff by the arm. Together, they charge
   headfirst into the stream of people.

   Rex's jaw comes unhinged and drops to the sandy ground as he watches a
   six foot wave crash against the shore of Seafoam Island. The tremendous
   volume of water topples sandcastles and washes them away with one fell swoop.
   Frightened Shellder flee in horror, hopping madly across the sand. Rainer
   turns to his younger brother, a sly grin on his face.
   "What's wrong, little brother?" He asks mockingly. "'Fraid of a little
   wave like that? Why, that's only a six-footer! I've ridden waves twice as big
   as that."
   "No way, Rainer!" Rex holds out his hands. "I am not surfing on one of
   those things!"
   "Come on, shrimp!" Rainer laughs, punching his shoulder playfully. "You
   have to learn sometime. You're a Stone! All Stone brothers eventually learn
   how to surf. Why, I've been surfing since I was-"
   "Eight." Rex cuts in, rolling his eyes. "Your first big wave was in
   Vermillion City. Seven feet. You rode it to the end and made a perfect score,
   according to the judges. Blah blah blah. I've heard this a thousand times."
   "I was seven." Rainer snaps. "And besides, I'm the water expert in the
   family. But you, Rex, have never really ridden a big one. You've got to start
   somewhere, and Seafoam Island has some of the best waves anywhere in the
   world."
   "Forget it." Rex says adamantly, crossing his arms over his chest. "I'm
   not going."
   "...Whatever you say." Rainer says, turning toward the beach. "...Rexie."
   Rex's left eye twitches involuntarily. Instantly, he enlarges a pokeball
   and throws it onto the sand. It snaps open, and in a burst of light Vaporeon
   materializes before him.
   "Va-POR-eon!" The water-type hisses.
   "Let's surf." Rex tells his pokemon. Together, they march to the sea.

   "I am sorry!" Katrina shouts over the roar of the crowd. "But I cannot
   accept a challenge if I cannot hear it!"
   The ninja master's daughter stands, cornered, on the edge of the pier.
   Behind her is a fifteen-foot drop to the waves below. Before her is a sea of
   raging pokemaniacs, each demanding a match.
   "One side, people!" Lizzie yells, pushing her way through the crowd.
   "Katrina! There you are!"
   "It seems my services are in demand." Katrina sighs deeply. "And,
   unfortunately, I must accept every single challenge."
   "That's not fair!" Jeff says, coming through the crowd. "You've got to
   have some time off, once in a while."
   "Alas the job of a Gym Leader is never done." Katrina shrugs. "All right,
   everyone, I will begin official matches if-"
   She is cut off by the blaring of a fog horn. Perplexed, everyone
   assembled looks off the edge of the pier. Below them, bobbing on the waves,
   is a catamaran carrying two people-
   "Oh, no!" Jeff, Katrina, and Lizzie groan at once.
   "ALLOW US TO INTRODUCE OURSELVES!" Two shouted voices come through
   megaphones.
   "To protect the world from devastation! ~ To unite all peoples within our
   nation!"
   "To denounce to evils of truth and love! ~ To extend our reach to the
   stars above!"
   "Artemus! ~ Felice!"
   "Team Rocket, blast off at the speed of light! ~ Surrender now or prepare
   to fight!"
   "Hahahahahahaha! ~ That's right!"
   A large, white canvass unrolls, revealing a sail with a giant, red "R"
   painted on it.
   "What's the deal, Team Rocket?" Jeff shouts down at the pair of criminals.
   "Yeah, what is it this time?" Lizzie agrees.
   "Quiet, little girl!" Felice snaps. "We're not after your pathetic, pink
   pokemon!"
   "We'd much rather have your friend's Parasect!" Artemus smiles coldly.
   "Hand it over, or face the consequences!"
   The crowd sputters in confusion.
   "No way, you jerks!" Jeff scoffs. "Like I'd hand my Parasect over to a
   couple of creeps like you two!"
   Artemus shrugs, still smiling.
   "Actually, I was hoping you'd say that." Artemus says, enlarging a
   pokeball. "Felice?"
   "Ha!" She laughs, readying her own. "Say 'good bye' to all of your
   pokemon, ladies and gentlemen!"
   "Be careful!" Katrina warns the crowd. "They may try anything!"
   "Ready or not!" The villains shout, hurling their pokeballs high into the
   air. Both release their contents at the same time, revealing a bizarre yellow
   pokemon holding onto a hovering silver orb.
   "Magnemite, Supersonic!" Felice orders.
   "Drowzee, Confusion!" Artemus commands.
   "Mag-ne-MITE!" The electronic pokemon beeps.
   "Drowwww-Zeeee!" The hypnotic pokemon drones.
   Immediately, they release powerful waves of energy, distorting the
   pokemon trainers' field of vision.
   "Whoa!" Cries a startled trainer as the pier seems to bend beneath him.
   All across the massive dock, trainers fall to their knees, dazed by the
   mesmerizing beams.
   "Cover your eyes!" Lizzie says. "Don't look at them!"
   It's no use. Jeff, Lizzie, and Katrina duck and cover, while the rest of
   the crowd stumbles about in utter confusion.
   "Hahahaha!" Artemus laughs. "It's working! Felice, my dear, care to
   proceed to step two?"
   "My thoughts exactly!" She cackles. "Magnemite, reel them in!"
   "Mag-NE-mite!" The electronic pokemon beeps. It moves away from the pier,
   hovering directly above the catamaran. Suddenly, it emits a surge of magnetic
   energy. As the stunned trainers watch helplessly, the robotic pokemon sucks
   their pokeballs right off of their belts.
   "No! Ninetails!" A young woman cries, reaching for her pokeball as it
   shoots toward the Magnemite.
   "Pidgeot! Come back!" A teenaged boy calls as his pokeball, too, is
   sucked away.
   "Yes!" Artemus cheers as the stolen pokeballs stick to Magnemite's twin
   magnets. "It's working!"

   "Here it comes!" Rainer calls to his four brothers as a huge swell
   approaches them. The Four Eevee Brothers (and Rex) bob up and down at the
   lineup, waiting for 'the big one'.
   "All right!" Pyro cheers. "Let's get ready to rummmble!"
   "How did I let them talk me into this?" Rex groans. He holds onto his
   Vaporeon. "Get ready, buddy. Here we go!"
   The brothers begin paddling at almost the same instant. They gather speed
   until the wave overtakes them lifts them up. Together, they all leap to the
   top of their boards (or pokemon, in the case of Rainer and Rex), and spread
   out their hands for balance.
   "Yes!" Mikey cheers from his board. "I'm the king of the world!"
   "Sure you are!" Sparky calls sarcastically over the roar of the waves.
   Rex, in the meantime, has no time for small talk.
   "Okay, Vaporeon!" He orders. "Now!"
   Instantly, the light blue water pokemon hangs a sharp right. Leaving a
   wake of white foam, Rex charges diagonally across the wave. Passing Pyro,
   Vaporeon, hits the wave hard with its massive tail. The spray totally
   drenches the red-haired sibling, nearly knocking him off the board.
   "What the?!?" He shouts.
   Rex rockets past Rainer. Vaporeon turns its head slightly, and fires its
   water gun.
   "No way!" Rainer gasps, just before the blast of water slams into him. He
   struggles wildly to maintain balance.
   As the remaining two watch in absolute shock, Rex rides Vaporeon to the
   end of the wave, skids across the surface of the water, and lands neatly on
   the shore. A moment later, they all four wipe out.
   "YES!" Rex shouts, leaping into the air. "I DID IT!"
   "Va-POR-eon!" The water pokemon squeals, slapping him a five five with
   its tail.
   As the Eevee Brothers stumble out of the waves, coughing a sputtering,
   Rex does a victory dance across the entire beach.
   "I wonder where he gets that from?" Sparky asks as he somersaults over a
   sandcastle. The others shrug.

   "Keep it up, Magnemite!" Felice calls.
   "Lizzie!" Katrina says, startled, struggling to hold onto her three
   pokeballs as they are pulled toward the edge of the pier. "I- I'm losing my
   grip!"
   "Here, let me help!" Jeff says, unzipping his backpack. "Put them in
   here! I encased my pack with lead; the magnetic field won't reach them."
   "Thank you, Jeff!" Katrina says, her eyes still closed.
   "Help!" Lizzie shouts. She firmly grasps her minipack, which contains her
   three pokeballs, but is steadily being pulled toward the edge. "Guys!"
   "Coming, Lizzie!" Jeff and Katrina call, reaching out blindly.
   "I've got to open my eyes!" Lizzie says. "I- I'll fall!"
   "No!" Jeff yells. "Don't open them! Then you'll be out Drowzee's mercy!
   Just hang on a second longer."
   Lizzie finally finds his hand. Gripping onto it, she pulls herself back
   from the edge, and shoves the pokeballs into his backpack.
   "That was close!" She sighs.
   "Curses!" Felice hisses. "The boy has managed to elude us, and Magnemite
   can't get to his Parasect."
   "No matter." Artemus arches an eyebrow. "We have enough pokemon here to
   fill a stadium! I suggest that we quit while we're ahead."
   "Agreed!" Felice nods. "Magnemite, release!"
   Instantly, the hovering orb drops its cargo of pokeballs. Felice and
   Artemus spread out a huge sack and catch each of them.
   "Return!" They both command. Their pokemon obediently return to their
   pokeballs.
   "So nice to have seen you!" Artemus laughs from the catamaran. "But we
   must go now."
   "Yes, really, it has been a ball!" Felice agrees. "A pokeball, you might
   say!"
   "Hahahahahahaha!" They both laugh.
   "Your sense of humor is as twisted as the rest of you!" Lizzie snaps.
   "And don't think we're going to let you get away with those pokeballs!"
   "Unfortunately, you do not have a choice!" Felice shrugs. "Better luck
   next time, chumps!"
   "VEEE!" A furry, brown pokemon cries in rage. It charges down the dock,
   leaps over the edge, and lands with its paws outstretched on the raft.
   "What?" Artemus asks.
   "Como?" Felice exclaims.
   "No!" Lizzie shouts.
   "Eevee?" Katrina gasps.
   "Vee!" The little furball hisses, shaking its tail furiously.
   "It must have seen Team Rocket stealing the other pokemon from the
   beach!" Jeff slaps his forehead.
   "Hmph." Artemus snorts. "What's this little rat doing here?"
   "Eeee!" It hisses, sinking its teeth deep into his leg.
   "AUGH!" He shrieks. Frantically, he kicks, sending Eevee sprawling onto
   the deck of the catamaran.
   "...Um, quite spirited," Felice surpresses a giggle. "For a little rat."
   "I will enjoy handing this one to the Boss!" Artemus snarls, shoving
   Eevee into a bag. "Let us leave this wretched Island!"
   "You can't do this!" Jeff shouts.
   "Watch me!" Felice laughs, revving up the engine. Instantly, the
   catamaran roars out of the shallows and speeds across the waves. As the
   trainers watch helplessly, the painted red "R" on the sail grows smaller and
   smaller on the horizon and disappears.

Chapter 12

"WHAT?!?"
  Rex's shout carries over the roar of the waves. He stands on the longest
  of three piers on the eastern side of Seafoam Island West, still wearing his
  swim trunks from the surfing competition. Since then, his brothers went to
  their hotel to change back into regular clothes. Beside him is his Vaporeon,
  which waves its tail in the sunlight. In front of him, Jeff, Lizzie, and
  Katrina nervously look to one another. Jeff looks at the ground. Lizzie
  avoids Rex's gaze. It is only Katrina who musters up the courage to tell the
  spikey-haired youth of the events that recently occured.
  "I am sorry," Katrina says solemnly, looking Rex straight in the eyes.
  "But Team Rocket has stolen Eevee, along with the pokeballs of many other
  tourists."
  "H-how did this happen?" Rex sputters, overcome with shock. "Didn't
  anyone try to... stop them???"
  "Lizzie, Jeff, and I attempted to halt them," Katrina sighs. "But were
  unable to overcome them by any means. Their pokemon used a devious attack
  that disoriented everyone and made them unable to battle. By the time we
  recovered... it was too late. Most of the others have gone to report the
  theft to officer Jenny."
  For a moment, Rex is silent. He looks straight ahead with a zombie-like
  stare. Then, he snaps.
  "Get out of my way!" He yells at Jeff, shouldering him aside. "Vaporeon,
  SURF!"
  He and his pokemon leap off the pier. Rex lands atop the water-type,
  which floats atop the waves.
  "After those crooks!" He orders. Immediately, Vaporeon thrashes its
  mighty tail, propelling them across the water as if he is riding a jet ski.
  In less than a minute, Vaporeon Surfs out of sight, following the wake of
  Team Rockets catamaran.
  "What's his problem?" Jeff asks, watching him go. "I mean, I understand
  if he gets upset, but he totally freaked out! Why does he care so much about
  a stupid Eevee?"
  "Because he may never see it again." Another voice answers. The four
  trainers turn around just in time to see Mikey walking up behind them. He had
  overheard their entire conversation from the beach. "And Eevee has been...
  his best friend since he was in diapers."
  "Oh," Lizzie says thoughtfully. "That would explain why he cares so much
  about a simple Eevee. It's just that I've never seen Rex like this before! So
  aggressive... uncaring. It's like he was a different person just then."
  "Try to understand." Mikey explains. "Out of all pokemon species, the
  Eevee breed is the most combatible with stone-induced evolution. If Team
  Rocket has a stone, and they use it on Eevee..."
  "Eevee will never be the same..." Lizzie finishes.

  "Come on, Vaporeon!" Rex calls over the waves. "Faster! We have to hurry
  if we're going to catch up to them!"
  "Va-poreon!" The agile swimmer replies. Although it still speeds over the
  waves, it is clearly tiring from the chase. It can't stand much more exertion.
  "I know you're tired," Rex says as they reach the top of a huge swell.
  "But we've gotta keep going! Team Rocket has an onboard engine; you have a
  tail and four paws. The only way we'll make it is if we go really, really
  fast!"
  "Vapo!" The pokemon hisses. The closest translation into English would be
  ' we? '
  Another huge wave crashes beneath them, and still they keep riding the
  tossing sea.
  "I see them!" Rex shouts as they reach the crest of another wave.
  "They're standing still! Just a little farther, Vaporeon! And hang on,
  Eevee!!"

  "Artemus, why have we stopped?" Felice asks her partner, who mans the
  helm. "We have to make certain that we were not followed. What if Officer
  Jenny is right behind us?"
  "Do not worry, Felice." Artemus replies. "No other human being is within
  two miles of us! I am, however, eager to inspect our cargo."
  "You know we should wait until we reach Rocket Headquarters." Felice
  chides him. "Then we shall transfer them all to the Boss, and..."
  "And we shall receive: nothing!" Artemus finishes. "Admit it, Felice,
  when was the last time we were given a bonus?"
  Felice sighs.
  "It has been awhile..." She admits. "But still, this is an unnecessary
  risk. Suppose someone sees us?"
  "You worry too much," Artemus laughs. "As I said, no one has the faintest
  idea of where we are. Now, why don't the two of us inspect the pokeballs and
  find out exactly what we have before we present it to the Boss?"
  "Not a bad idea..." Felice nods. "I suppose it could do no harm."
  "And if there are one or two gems among the rest," Artemus smiles slyly.
  "We might be inclined to take them as our own; our personal souveniers of a
  job well done."
  "Artemus, your childish suggestion offends me in every possible way."
  Felice says emotionlessly, picking up a pokeball. She shakes it and puts her
  ear to it. "Do you suppose that this one could be a Magmar? I've always
  wanted a Magmar!"
  "There is only one way to find out." Artemus suggests, pulling a thin,
  black object from his pocket.
  "The RocketDex!" Felice laughs. "Just plug in a pokeball and it will
  analyze the pokemon contained within, including height, weight, various
  statuses, and experience level. As you will recall, I was instrumental in its
  programming."
  "I recall." Artemus sighs. "Now, shall we analyze thi-AAAAAAAAH!!!!"
  Felice bursts into laughter. The furry, brown Eevee which they had
  abducted from the beach has somehow broken free of the sack it was in and
  sunken its teeth into Artemus' leg.
  "GET IT OFF!" He shouts. "OW! Beastly little rodent!"
  He kicks his leg wildly, finally throwing the Eevee across the deck of
  the catamaran. Artemus grits his teeth, humiliated. Felice doubles over
  laughing.
  "I'm glad you are enjoying my misery so completely." Artemus growls,
  picking up the Eevee by its collar. The tiny pokemon hisses and bites at him.
  "Oh, I am!!!!" She laughs hysterically.
  "What shall we do with this little vermin?" He asks. "I suggest throwing
  it overboard!"
  "VEE!" Eevee hisses.
  "Oh, I have an even better idea!" Felice chuckles, sobering. She pulls a
  small necklace from her pocket, tied to which is a sparkling red stone.
  "A fire stone!" Artemus gasps. He carefully fingers the shimmering gem.
  "How- how did you get it?"
  "Oh, an old boyfriend gave it to me." Felice shrugs, waving her hand as
  if it was nothing. "He had an odd name... Spyro... Tiro... Cairo... something
  like that."
  "Who cares what his name was?" Artemus laughs. "With this little stone,
  we can turn this worthless powder puff into a vicious, fighting machine!"
  Artemus holds the stone up to Eevee, which squirms and tries to break
  free of his grip. The gem pulsates with an unseen force...
  "Hold it!" Felice lifts up a hand. "What is that?"
  Artemus sees it too. A lone figure rides a wave steadily toward them...
  "It's that other boy!" Artemus yells. "The one that helped the worm Jeff
  defeat us!"
  "Ignore him," Felice smirks. "Transform the Eevee, and then we shall
  instruct the new Flareon to incinerate its former master!"
  "Hahahaha!" Artemus laughs. "Yes! Let's get on with it!"

  Back on Seafoam, Sparky, Pyro, and Rainer all walk along the boardwalk
  together. They laugh, look at booths, and talk about various things,
  completely oblivious to their younger brother's plight. After stopping for
  smoothies at an Ice Cream stand, the three of them lean on the rail of the
  boardwalk and discuss something very important.
  "Okay, Rainer!" Sparky says. "Violet, Daisy, or Lilly?"
  "Tough one..." Rainer says, deep in thought. "But I'd have to go with
  Daisy."
  "Isn't she the one with pink hair?" Pyro asks.
  "No, I thought she had blue..." Rainer says.
  "Bro, that's Lilly!" Sparky rolls his eyes. "Can't you tell one
  Sensational Sister from another?"
  "Sparky? Rainer?" A voice comes from behind them. "Pyro? Is that really
  you guys?"
  They all turn around to see a girl of about seventeen with long pink
  hair. She wears a miniskirt and sandals, with a white blouse.
  "Joy?" Pyro asks. "Of the Viridian City Joys?"
  "It's me!" She beams.
  "No way!" Rainer exclaims. "The last time I saw you, you were Rex's age!"
  "You've really grown, kiddo!" Sparky agrees.
  "It's good to see you guys again!" She laughs. "Which reminds me, where's
  Mikey?"
  "Beats me." Pyro shrugs. "We lost him back at the hotel, along with
  Rex..."
  "Rex is here?" She gasps. Then she grins wickedly. "How did the shrimp
  get onto the island? There is no way he came on the S.S. Anne..."
  "Nope!" The three of them laugh.
  "Actually, we aren't sure how he got here." Sparky shrugs.
  "We came on a ferry." Rainer explains.
  "Oh, yeah!" Joy says. "I remember hearing on the news that the S.S. Anne
  cruise was cancelled. Something about Team Rocket?..."
  "Right." Pyro nods. Then he laughs. "Here, sit down. We'll tell you about
  it. You see, these two creeps named Cordelia and Jethro..."

  "Hold still, furry little vermin!" Artemus snarls as Eevee tries to
  wiggle free. "Felice! Hurry up with that stone."
  "All right," She smiles wickedly. "Here you go, little Eevee!"
  She presses the glittering stone against its fur. They both hold their
  breath. Nothing happens.
  "What?!?" Artemus gasps. "Try it again!"
  "It's no use!" Felice exclaims, pressing the stone against it again and
  again. "It won't evolve!"
  Suddenly, Eevee bites down hard on Artemus' finger. He screams, dropping
  the pokemon to the deck.
  "The insolence!" He hisses. "Why, I'll-"
  "Artemus..." Felice cuts in. "Is it... glowing?"
  Both thieves watch with bulging eyes as the little Eevee shines with an
  astonishing brightness.
  "YES!" They cheer. "It's evolving into Flareon!"
  "Eevee!" It hisses. "EeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeVEEE!"
  "Uh-oh." They say in unison.
  Before Rex's astonished eyes, a brilliant flash of light engulfs the
  catamaran. His jaw drops to his knees as he sees a blast of energy knock Team
  Rocket clear off the raft and over the horizon.
  "We're blasting off ag-aaaaaaaain!" They shriek as they disappear into
  the sky.
  "H-hyper Beam???" Rex gasps. He had no idea that his little eevee even
  knew such a powerful technique...
  As Vaporeon draws nearer, he sees his little Eevee pup sitting happily on
  the deck of the catamaran. It squeals with delight upon seeing him, and leaps
  into his arms.
  "Eevee!" Rex laughs. "You're not evolved! You're still you! You're...
  you're still an eevee!"
  "Vee! Eevee!" The furry pokemon squeaks, nuzzling its trainer with its
  wet nose.
  "Hahahahaha!" Rex laughs. "Yes!"

  Later, much later, Rex and Jeff watch the sunset over the beach from the
  boardwalk. While the rest of Seafoam Island West is just gearing up for a
  night of partying and festivals, the two boys are content to eat their chili
  dogs in peace.
  "Well, another day," Rex says aloud. "Another Team Rocket plot foiled."
  "How do we have time to do it all?" Jeff asks. "Defeat Team Rocket, train
  our pokemon, collect badges, and relax in our leisure. Kind of makes school
  look easy, huh?"
  "I wouldn't go that far..." Rex shrugs. "But yeah."
  The two are silent for a moment, watching an adult Fearow swooping low
  over the sea in search of Magikarp.
  "Jeff... I'm..." Rex starts to say. "I'm sorry I acted like a jerk
  earlier. I was just... frightened."
  "... I understand." Jeff nods after a moment. "I might have done the same
  if they had one of my pokemon. It's no big deal."
  "No hard feelings?" Rex asks. "Pax?"
  "Pax." Jeff grins. "Besides, I let you push me out of the way!"
  "Oh, brother." Rex rolls his eyes. "You sound like me with my brothers."
  "Yo, Rex!" A familiar voice calls.
  "Well, speak of the devil." Jeff grins. "I think I'll go... somewhere
  else. See ya!"
  "See ya." Rex gulps. He turns. Pyro jogs up next to him.
  "Where ya been, buddy?" Pyro grins. "I wanted to-"
  "What?" Rex asks. "Tease me? Push me around?"
  "Actually..." Pyro shrugs. "I was going to congratulate you."
  "Wh- huh???" Rex arches an eyebrow quizically.
  "It's all over the news!" Pyro laughs. "About how you beat Team Rocket
  and returned all of the pokemon they stole back to their rightful owners!"
  "It.. it is?" Rex asks, stunned.
  "Bro, you surprise me!" Pyro smiles. "I mean, all these years, you act
  like a typical little brother. To be honest, when you left on you pokemon
  journey last year, I thought you'd be back in a week. But, whoa! You've got 5
  badges! You turned those pathetic Eevees into four very strong, high-level
  pokemon! Little brother, I am impressed!"
  "You... are???" Rex arches both eyebrows. "Impressed... with me?"
  "Totally!" He laughs. "You really are the Fifth Eevee Brother! I never
  even thought you had it in you."
  Rex is silent for a moment.
  "Thanks, Pyro..." He sighs. "You're... okay, too."
  "Hey, don't get any ideas." Pyro grins, punching Rex playfully in the
  shoulder. "You may be a good pokemon trainer, but we're still way ahead of
  you. Only 5 badges? After a whole YEAR? You'd better get with it, or Joy is
  going to be a Pokemon League Champ before you!"
  "In her dreams!" Rex laughs. "What pokemon does she have? Persian?? Ha!"
  Pyro and Rex joke and laugh all the way back to the hotel.

  "Arr, methinks this here'll do it." A mechanic says, screwing in the last
  bolt on the new and improved fuel line for the Salty Seadog.
  "Ahoy thar, Mister Joseph!" The Captain calls from the dock. "Be ya
  almost done thar? I needs to get me passengers to Cinabarr Island as soon as
  possible, and ye be slowing me down!"
  "All finished, Captain!" The ship's mechanic calls back. "Soon as I weld
  this here piece together, we'll be on our way!"
  "Ah, then hurry it up!" The Captain orders. "I'll go and tell me crew to
  have it sea worthy by tomorrow... I say.... Do ye smell gas?"
  "Nope." The mechanic says, igniting the welding torch.
  KABOOOOOOM!!!!
  The ship splinters into a thousand pieces, hurling debris through the
  air. Huge chunks of metal splash down into the bay. The entire cargo hold is
  torched, as is much of the hull. The Captain stands on the dock, unscathed.
  "Blow me down!" He exclaims. "Be ye all right, Mr. Joseph?"
  "Aye... Cap'n..." The mechanic groans, crawling out from under a piece of
  the hull. "I be fine."
  "Good." The Captain nods. Then he shoves the man off the dock and into
  the water. "Ya dogged fool! Ye nearly got us killed! Now it'll take weeks to
  fix it, ye buffoon!"
  As the sun sets over the horizon, Mr. Joseph swims toward the shore,
  fleeing a school of Seaking, among other denizens of the deep that were
  disturbed by the ship's explosion.
  "Aye..." The Captain sighs, sitting down on his scorched hat. "It be so
  hard to find good help these days..."

  Deep in the center of Seafoam Island West is the one place that has yet
  to be developed. Away from the lights, sounds, and people of the coast, is a
  thick tropical forests where few tourists ever venture. And deep in the heart
  of this forest is a mysterious visitor... In the dark recesses of a hidden
  cave, a small, glowing figure sleeps quietly. As it sleeps, it dreams. It
  remembers hearing the cries of the people on the dock, and seeing those two
  bad people stealing all of their pokemon. It sees itself following them over
  the waters, out of the view of everyone on the shore. It recalls untying the
  bag that contained the little Eevee, and then using the skill Hyper Beam from
  behind it to drive away the thieves. Then it dove underwater and swam back to
  the mainland, to hide until dark when it was safe to venture out again. Now,
  though, it just sleeps, waiting to continue its endless vigil of protecting
  her... the girl it had to protect. Why must it protect her? It... just had
  to. One day it would all make sense, it was sure of it. Until then, it would
  wait, watching, following. One day it would tell her why it was looking out
  for her. But not now. Now, it would rest. Now, it would sleep.

  Next Chapter:
  - Our heroes wave goodbye to Seafoam Island!
  - Jynx and Chansey... fighting???