Struggling under the approaching threat of Whitney’s Miltank Of Doom, I made my way from Azaela Town to Goldenrod City and beyond because I never felt quite ready to face that damnable cow.
As I putzed around with my training, a guard station employee gave me a Mareep named Kenya with explicit orders to deliver it to a buddy of his back on Route 31. Sure, guy. Maybe after I am the champion of two regions and don’t need her anymore.
Hitting up the Bug-Catching Competition in Johto’s one and only National park was a sweet and sour experience. On the unfortunate side, I found out that my SoulSilver Randomizer won’t override the Bug-Catching Contest. The positive was that my first encounter was a female Butterfree!
I probably won’t ever use her because she’s so fragile, but she is a great omen, I think.
Kenya also almost died twice! It was very scary! But neither time was against Whitney, who I effortlessly crushed because I overtrained so hard.
Now on with the challenge in Chapter 4: Eusine What I Did Last Summer! (Or: I Finally Catch Some Good Pokeys!)
Hey, remember that wiggly tree outside of Violet City? I still have to get past it.
Luckily, a girl from the local flower shop had given me a watering can so I can tend to some berries. Do I want to grow berries? No. Do I want a free watering can in a video game that doesn’t have a carrying limit? Absolutely I do.
TURNS OUT, fake wiggly trees hate water! I mean, I only have, like, 30 water type Pokemon, but sure. The watering can. I’ll use that.
The wiggly “tree” attacked!
I had two reactions to this:
First: Oh wow, a Mawile! Great! I can’t wait to catch this because
Second: Oh wait, it’s not generation six and Mega Evolutions aren’t a thing. You are still junk and not an Uber Tier or a fairy type.
Regardless, I caught him and named him, yep… “Seymour”. Haha, like “feed me, Seymour!”
Wait, that wasn’t the PLANT’S name! Curses!
(What was the plant’s name?)
((I haven’t seen Little Shop of Horror since I was in grade school))
Oh well. Seymour was typical of the kinds of catches I’d been getting so far. I guess this is just how it’s going to be! Me and my C-tier Pokemon charging in on the Elite Four.
Remember back at the start of my quest how my mom offered to save money for me? Because she was afraid I’d blow it all if I kept it myself (which is… not untrue)?
QUIT BUYING ME BERRIES I’M NEVER GOING TO USE!
I mean, I do actually appreciate this aspect of the game. Left to my own devices, I’m going to blow all my money on, like, Antidotes that I will never use. With PokeMom saving funds, I can splurge on Full Restores before the Elite Four, but damn, woman. Enough with the fruit I don’t need. You don’t have to say “Sorry!” if you just don’t do it.
I hope those things are cheap at least.
Just a little ways north of where the wiggly tree stood, Route 36 inexplicably changes names to Route 37. There’s no real rationale for the change, but I don’t need rationale. I need new Pokemon! And since it’s technically a new location, I hopped into the tall grass to see what awaited me…
WELCOME TO THE TEAM, REX. Can I get you anything? A stay in Day-Care perhaps while you grow big and strong? Literally every single Rare Candy I can get my hands on? Are you comfortable? Is everything… are you… okay!
That’s right, I got a level 15 Larvitar! It won’t evolve until for-bloody-ever. Not until level 30 for its MIDDLE stage, a Pupitar. Level 55 for it to fully evolve into Tyranitar. But this could finally be the anti-Lance weapon I have been waiting for! I just have to be patient and willing to grind, grind, grind, but we finally have a real cornerstone of the team!
(Besides you, Marc-Andre. I still love you)
((And you, too, Kenya. Please quit almost dying))
Just a few feet away from where Rex was snagged was the fabled Ecruteak Town. After healing up, I hit the Dance Theater for a show, and my friend (?) the Kimono Girl was on stage!
She was being accosted by another a Team Rocket thug! Where does this guy get off? I stepped on stage and defended her geisha honor with a rousing victory.
She was appreciative, but not as appreciative as the guy in the front row who stepped on stage and gave me the Surf HM. Nice! Surf may be an HM, but it’s a good one, with a base power of 95. Marc-Andre was more than ready to take on the responsibility of being my surfer. Hell, I taught it to Grace, too, in case her turn ever comes up.
Then… it finally happened. Before I even left the dance theater…
A visit from The Ghost Of Internet Memes Past! It took all the way until Ecruteak (you actually meet Joey and get his phone number WAAAY back at Cherrygrove), but I finally got the call from Joey to brag about his rat.
You train that rat up, Joey. Train it with all of your heart. And keep me updated every step of the way.
Ecruteak has a small pond, so before returning to Goldenrod City (more on that in a second), I decided to do a spot of fishing…
Mr. Mime, Nikki here’s final form, isn’t amazingly powerful, but I am really eager to get my hands on a psychic type for the Elite 4. If I can’t do any better than Mr. (Mrs?) Mime, then at least she is an option.
Why back to Goldenrod City? Well, when I healed up in the Pokemon Center, I made the acquaintance of Bill. Bill, you see, created and maintains the Pokemon Storage System where all the pokeys I’m not using live. He seemed like a good fella, and he said I could come visit him any time I’m around the GC.
Well, I’m close enough in Ecruteak!
So back down Routes 37, 36, and 35. Through the National Park. Back to Johto’s metropolis where Bill and his family live in a single-room efficiency.
Bill, it turns out, is a homebody. He ALSO as an Eevee. Since he never gets out, he worries his Eevee could be better served with a trainer who can let it explore the big world outside Bill’s front door. So, sure, Bill. I’ll take your…
Bill, you cad. I will dedicate my championship to you and that guard who doesn’t know what Spearows are.
Suddenly all the catches of the first three chapters weren’t so bothersome; things were FINALLY working out for me on the Pokemon front. Even though Godzilla and Rex were too young to do much NOW, they had great promise for the future. And with Goldenrod being so close to the Day-Care Center…
It was an easy call to take Lenora and Dali back in order to leave my new Brothers Of Destruction at the Day Care Center. There they can drink pure testosterone and throw some trucks at each other as they grow more and more powerful with each step I take. And soon–
Oh? A call from the Day-Care? There’s an egg? They breed? Hmmm…
Oh! Look at that.
SIBLINGS Of Destruction then, I guess.
I ended up getting my hands on another HM not too long after this. I was exploring the areas around Ecruteak when a hurried Hiker barreled into me as he fled Mount Mortar. As way of apology, he gave me the HM for Strength. I have no great use for it yet, but it’s at least another respectably powered one.
After that, it was time to check out the ancient Burned Tower of Ecruteak. It had long ago been one half of the Twin… er… Two… hmm… Pair o’ Towers of Ecruteak, but it succumbed to a fire ages ago. Still, it might hold some mysterious secrets.
Pikachus are fragile like overripe fruit and I accidentally killed her in one shot. Oops! Sorry, franchise mascot.
Near the Pikachu were two strange men. One was Morty, the Ecruteak gym leader and big fan of all legendary Pokemon. The other was Eusine, weird guy overall and fan of one legendary Pokemon in particular. He pointed out that the Johton Legendary Beasts–Entei, Raikou, and Suicune–called the Burned Tower home, but he had no idea how to approach them.
You know who was just a few steps away from them, though?
Another easy win by me sends Lil Gio off with his tale between his legs.
And you know what? Eusine may be scared of Suicune, but I’m not! So I charge right into the Burned Tower basement.
The Beasts do end up taking off, but they check me out first. Eusine is jealous and is now determined to earn Suicune’s trust. Fair enough, weirdo. Good luck with that.
Also, can we clarify something? There is an eternal argument over whether the Johton Beasts are dogs or cats. Here’s my take:
They’re clearly both.
There’s no way you can see Suicune and think there is any cat there. Conversely, you are a fool if you look at Raikou and think “well, that’s probably a dog”. And Entei is the one that splits the difference. He COULD be a lion. Or he COULD be some kind of, like, Mastiff. It’s Entei’s lack of definition that inspires the debate.
It’s not an either/or proposition, guys.
With the Tower cleared out, Morty is ready to be challenged, but not just yet. There’s more training to do because I refuse to let Marc-Andre and Kenya come to any peril.
West of Exruteak is route 38, home to a few straggling trainers whose butts I whooped. There’s some grass, too, so why not make a new friend?
Seems ideal, right? I was JUST talking about how I needed a powerful psychic type and there he is, mine for the taking.
UNTIL HE USED TELEPORT FIRST TURN LIKE THE GOD DAMN WHORE HE IS.
For the uninitiated, Teleport means instead of attacking me like a man, he instantly flees the battle.
I will murder your entire family for that, Alakazam! They will speak my name either in fragmented whispers or not at all! No longer will I be Stew, trainer of Pokemon. I will become Set, Serpent God Of Devouring Abras! You all will fall!
I mean… I still have Rex and Godzilla from earlier, so it’s fine. I’m fine. This is fine.
(What Alakazam still has friggin’ TELEPORT?)
Hot over that Alakazam’s bullshit, I went to take my aggression out on Morty.
Yep, Kenya evolved into her final form while I ripped through Morty’s thugs. She actually hit level 31 in the process, and that would almost be destructively important.
You see, Morty’s Pokemon are strong, but gentle. Kenya KO’ed Gastly in one move. Marc-Andre did the same to Gengar and his first Haunter, but on the second Haunter, I sent Kenya back out for more fun. This was looking like a four-move gym until I ordered Kenya to use Thunderpunch.
And she… ignored me?
See, Kenya is considered a traded Pokemon, and she got a bit too big for her (my?) britches by hitting level 31. She decided she didn’t need to listen to my commands anymore.
Haunter put a Curse on her (and, really, I should be thankful Morty didn’t use Mean Look to stop me from switching out instead), but I sent out faithful Marc-Andre who will obey requests at any level.
Thankfully, due to having the Fog Badge, Kenya will respect me again… to a point. But it was an embarrassing lesson to maybe not train her up TOO quickly. If Morty had led with Mean Look and THEN used Curse? While she was refusing to attack? I really likely would have lost her. So that’s pretty much a third close call for my electric sheep in the last two chapters.
I’m getting lucky at turns here. I’m definitely working hard and making sure my team is ready for what’s coming at them, but Kenya has barely survived against a Kadabra and then had really good fortune against a Pinsir and Morty’s Haunter.
I just have to hope she has weathered the storm. Four chapters in and no casualties yet!
To be continued in Chapter 5!
MY TEAM SO FAR: