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Old 10-23-2017, 04:06 PM   #86
Missingno. Master
His name is Goggles. :)
 
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Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Virbank City
Posts: 6,013
Boss Rocket



"Let's try it again! Tinnitus, Mud Shot!"

It was at this point the Palpitoad would have exclaimed in response before firing several muddy projectiles from his mouth, were he able to actually speak. Nevertheless, his enthusiasm for the training came through loud and clear, and Keith grinned at how much his Palpitoad had improved. Back when he'd let Cotton, Chromium, and Tinnitus travel to Incognito Isle, Tinnitus was still a Tympole, so it came as a pleasant surprise when Keith was greeted by a Swirlix, a Smeargle, and a silent yet cheerful-as-ever Palpitoad.

"Yeah!" Keith grinned as the balls of mud struck the targets Keith had set up. "Nicely done, Tinnitus! Your aim's really improving!"

"Yeah," Meowth remarked, patting the Palpitoad on the back. "And it looks like dis here battlefield was a good idea," he added, glancing around.

"Yeah," Keith agreed, vaguely aware as he did so of how much they were all saying "yeah" that day. "Sure wish they'd finish up with the house, though," he added, glancing at the gigantic structure looming at the northernmost point of the gigantic clearing adjacent to Salt Wave Coast- or as Keith called it now, Sludge Wave Coast. This structure was to be Keith's new Secret Base. His new house. No longer bound by archaic Secret Base laws only allowing for oddly specific locations to set up one's house, nor any sort of stipulation that it must be built in a tree or into a cave or something like that, nor restricted by some specific shop with relatively limited selection, Keith saw the freedom to go all-out, and by no means did he squander said freedom. Until such time as work on the house was done, Keith had been living in the Pokémon Center they had built on the premises, the one Helena, Rubeus, and Selia were running together. It wasn't uncomfortable by any means, but at the same time, Keith really couldn't wait to move into his new place.

But before he could spend too much time dwelling on this, Keith heard quite loud footsteps coming his way. Far from being alarmed by this, however, he turned with a small smile to face the fedora-clad Camerupt coming his way. Said smile shrank somewhat, though, upon seeing the look of urgency on the Fire/Ground-type's face. "Yeah, I don't come bearin' good news, hat man," said Vinny.

"What's going on, then?" Keith asked.

"Well, y'know the four Rocket Executives, yeah?" asked the Camerupt.

"Might've heard of them, yeah," Keith smirked.

"Yeah, well, trouble is, now that youse had a hand in takin' them all down, youse kinda climbed right up Boss Rocket's list o' priorities," stated the Camerupt. "Team Rocket may be all but finished, but not if Giovanni's got somethin' to say about it, savvy?"

"Yeesh," Keith frowned. "Well, I guess we gotta start planning an attack on their headquarters, then."

"Yeah, about that," said Vinny. "Good news/bad news time."

"Oh, lemme guess," groaned Keith. "Good news, I don't need to find them, bad news is because they're actively hunting me?"

"Youse catch on quick," grinned Vinny. "So yeah, we gots to be ready, cuz dey could find us any... time... now..." he trailed off, glancing at some point behind Keith. This plus the sound of a rapidly approaching helicopter behind Keith somewhat eliminated the need for him to even ask what was behind him. And indeed, as he turned to look, his suspicions were quickly proven correct.

"Oh, crap," sighed Keith as the black helicopter landed, emblazoned with a red R. And as the doors flew open, a handful of Rocket Grunts rushed out, Rocket Balls at the ready. Thinking fast, Keith threw the various Poké Balls he had on his person, sending out his Vespiquen, his Slurpuff, and his Weedle, all before any of the grunts could activate those pesky Poké Ball-disabling devices.

"Ooh, so Masters finally catches on," sneered one of the grunts. "Not that it'll make matters any easier for you this time around, punk!"

"Yeah!" jeered another grunt. "Because this time we got the boss with us, and he'll fix you good!"

"Now, now," came a surprisingly calm and refined voice as an older man stepped forward, short black hair concealed beneath a fedora just as black. He was sharply dressed in a nice suit, the red R of Team Rocket sewn onto his jacket. He gave a cold smirk as he regarded Keith. "So," he said. "Keith Golbatson Masters, we meet at last."

"You're Boss Rocket, aren't you?" said Keith, frowning. "Giovanni, right?"

"Indeed I am," smirked Giovanni. "I see my reputation precedes me, as does yours. You see, you have proven yourself responsible for the, ah, indisposition, of four of the best Executives in the history of Team Rocket. Imagine, if you will, my distinct displeasure at discovering that one of my most trusted lieutenants, Shadow Greg, was found lying dead in a ditch en route to Darkshade Village one day, showing unmistakable signs of having been tortured to death via Curse."

"Yeah, well, you'll forgive me, I'm sure, for being less than sympathetic towards the man who raped and killed my sister," retorted Keith.

"And to follow that up," continued Giovanni, "I get wind of the fact that Jet has been arrested and sent to prison. Well, now, I couldn't have that. I made arrangements to have him bailed out straightaway, but alas, that plan hit a minor snag- see, the officer in charge of him had, in a truly astonishing display of stupidity, put him in the same cell as a very violent man he'd wronged many years back. While I was able to arrange for his release, sadly, Jet left the prison in a body bag instead of this helicopter."

"I would say I'm sorry for your loss, but under the circumstances, I'm really, really not," Keith stated.

"Oh, and dear old Remy McPhione," said Giovanni, ignoring Keith's snarky coments altogether. "Promising young lad, full of potential. Rose through the ranks magnificently, and earned his spot as Executive. I had been considering him as a successor, in fact, when it would someday come my time to retire, but you and that pesky Ralph fellow forced me to rethink my plans."

"Once again, really not sorry," said Keith.

"And finally, Executive Elmer," said Giovanni. "A bit too fond of alliteration for my liking, but he made up for it with all manner of redeeming qualities. Though I'm sure we disagree on the definition of 'redeeming qualities' here," he chuckled. "But the point still stands. Elmer faced off against you. Elmer is no longer among the living."

"Elmer was insane," Keith stated. "He died because he had his own Electrode blow up the cave he was currently inside in a last-ditch effort to kill me."

"Indeed?" questioned Giovanni. "Well, then. Quite a heroic effort, and a pity he didn't succeed. You see, you, boy, have been a persistent and pestilent thorn in Team Rocket's side for far too long now. And with each and every one of my trusted Executives dead, I fear the time has come to take matters into my own hands. With a little backup, of course," he added, glancing around at the numerous Rocket Grunts who had come with him. "Seems foolish to take on the great Keith Masters without taking a few precautions, after all."

"Well, that makes you smarter than most of your lackeys," stated Keith.

"Mr. Giovanni, may we?" asked one Grunt.

Giovanni's smirk became more pronounced. "Have at him," he responded.

The grunts roared their approval, and Rocket Balls were thrown left and right. Raticate, Golbat, Houndour, Fearow, multiples of each appeared before Keith. "Oh, we can handle these!" smirked Keith.

"Can you, now?" Giovanni smirked back. "All right, Vinny- Take Down!"

Keith was rather surprised to hear the boss of Team Rocket issuing a command to Keith's own Camerupt, though pleasantly relieved to see the Camerupt's response- a shrewd smirk and a shake of the head. "Nothin' doin'," replied Vinny. "You see, when I told youse I was a double agent, I got that part right. I just might'a mixed up exactly who it was I was a double agent for."

Giovanni's smirk vanished faster than food in the presence of a Snorlax. "What?!" he barked.

"Vinny, what the-" began Keith.

"Y'see, hat man, all the info I been feedin' youse about Team Rocket didn't come easy," explained Vinny. "I didn't just have some spy in the operation- I had to become the spy. Convince 'em I was on deir side and dat I was spyin' on youse fer dem. Had ta give 'em a few nuggets of information, but I left out just the right pertinent details ta make all da difference. Meanwhile, ain't none o' dem suspected dat I was passin' along info on dem ta youse! See, Boss Rocket ova dere thought I was settin' youse up fer a trap, when in fact I was settin' dem up!"

Keith gave a low whistle. "I'm impressed," he nodded.

"You filthy traitor!" roared Giovanni. "How dare you betray Team Rocket! Attack, now!" he called to his grunts.

"Yeah, let's deal with these guys first," smirked Keith to Vinny. "Vinny, Incinerate! Meowth, Swift! Hermione, Blizzard! Tinnitus, Bubble! Cotton, Dazzling Gleam! Apamin, use Gust!"

And the battle commenced. With all of Keith's Pokémon launching attacks that hit multiple Pokémon at once, they were able to get off to a good start. Indeed, several Raticate, Fearow, and a Houndour were already knocked out by all this, though several of the Houndour were powered up by Incinerate thanks to Flash Fire.

Apamin found herself fending off multiple Fearow and Golbat at once. "Apa! Fury Swipes!" Keith exclaimed.

"Vespi!" buzzed Apamin, claws glowing brightly as the regal Bug/Flying-type started slashing and swiping at the various Flying-types.

Keith turned to where Meowth was fending off two Raticate and a Houndour at once. "Meowth, use Shadow Wave!" he commanded.

"It's on!" grinned Meowth, unleashing waves of shadowy aura at all three opponents.

Giovanni observed as Keith went on in this vein for some time, continually giving commands to his Pokémon, all of whom seemed quite capable of holding their own against multiple opponents. And soon, all the grunts were withdrawing their Pokémon, while not one of Keith's had fallen.

"W-We're sorry, boss," mumbled one of the grunts.

"It is of no matter," Giovanni responded, once again sounding calm and refined, smirking once more as he stepped forward to face Keith. "Truth be told, I find myself rather impressed with you," he said to Keith. "One hears the rumors, of course, but it's never clear whether one should believe the hype. In this case, however, the hype has not been exaggerated."

"If you're trying to lead into some sort of recruitment spiel for Team Rocket, I'll save you some time," replied Keith. "I have no intention of joining Team Rocket."

At this, Giovanni actually chuckled. "Oh, dear boy, I've known all along that trying to recruit you would be an exercise in futility. No, I merely want it known that I'm quite impressed with you. It's rather refreshing to know, you see, that the Trainer who took down my Executives is a very formidable and powerful Trainer. It would be quite a blow to Team Rocket's pride if a weakling were to be the one to put us in such a dire situation. Now, having said that, it is now my turn," he added, producing a Rocket Ball from within his suit. "A full six-on-six battle- the boss of Team Rocket against the number-one enemy of Team Rocket. We shall see who triumphs."

"Alright, then," agreed Keith. "But how about this? If I win, you disband Team Rocket for good."

Giovanni raised an eyebrow. "Disband Team Rocket?" he repeated with a smirk. "Hmm... And if I win?"

"If you win?" repeated Keith. "Uh..."

"Let me make a suggestion," said Giovanni. "If you win, you surrender all your Pokémon to me. You agree to that, and I'll agree to disband Team Rocket if I lose."

"And how do I know you won't screw me on this deal?" asked Keith.

"The same way I know you won't screw me on it," Giovanni retorted swiftly.

"You make a good point," nodded Keith. "All right, then..."

"Keith... Youse should make da deal," Meowth said shakily. "We'll fight harder den we eva fought before," he vowed.

"Count on us, hat man," added Vinny.

"Slurpuff!

"Quennnnn!"

"Weeedle!"

Tinnitus obviously couldn't voice his agreement, but emitted some very positive vibrations to make known his agreement.

Keith smiled at his Pokémon. "I know I can count on you all," he stated. "Alright- Giovanni, I accept!"

"Then we begin!" roared Giovanni, throwing his Rocket Ball. "Honchkrow, enter!"

"Cotton, you're up first!" Keith declared. As Giovanni's Rocket Ball sent out a large bird with black plumage, Keith's Slurpuff dashed forward.

"Going for the type advantage?" smirked Giovanni. "I had a feeling. Use Steel Wing!"

"Cotton! Flamethrower!" Keith called out.

"SluuuurPUUUUFFFFFF!" bellowed Cotton as he unleashed a powerful stream of flames from his mouth. Honchkrow cawed its displeasure as its gleaming wings were heated up unpleasantly by the Fire move. Eventually, Honchkrow was forced to abandon the attempt.

"Gah... Now use Brave Bird!" ordered Giovanni.

"Dazzling Gleam attack!" Keith commanded.

"Krooooowwww!"

"Puuuuufffff!"

The pair of Pokémon exclaimed loudly, Honchkrow as it dove down to ram into Cotton, body aglow with a fierce aura, Cotton as he unleashed a brilliant flash of magical light. And though the super effective hit hurt immensely, still Honchkrow powered through, and slammed Cotton hard.

"Cotton!" Keith called as his Slurpuff tumbled backwards. "Can you still fight?"

"Sluuuur... puff!" grunted Cotton, getting back up by way of an answer.

"Excellent!" grinned Keith. "Now, Cotton, use Shadow Chill!"

"Dodge that, Honchkrow!" snapped Giovanni.

But Honchkrow couldn't evade it. Cotton was far too quick in firing off the beam of sinister icy energy, and Honchkrow was knocked right out of the sky. It couldn't even attempt to start flying again, for dark ice was forming all over it- Honchkrow was frozen solid!

"No!" Giovanni exclaimed.

"Yes!" Keith exclaimed. "Finish it off, Cotton! Drain Punch right now!"

"Slurp! Slurpuff Slurpuff Slurpuff... SLURPUFF!" Cotton exclaimed, running up to Honchkrow, right fist swirling with green and yellow energy, before taking a great swing at the frozen bird, shattering the ice, and any chance of Honchkrow winning along with it.

"Gah," grunted Giovanni as he withdrew Honchkrow. "Not bad," he conceded, before producing another Rocket Ball. "Now try your luck with this! Nidoking, enter!" he bellowed, throwing the Rocket Ball, and indeed it was a Nidoking that materialized. Keith, of course, knew the species quite well, as he owned one of his own. Of course, he didn't have Godric with him right now, which was a shame- he kinda liked the idea of seeing how his own Nidoking might match up. But right now wasn't the time for that, was it?

Keith looked at Cotton. The Slurpuff had the type disadvantage, but everyone present knew there were ways around that. "Use Yawn!" he ordered.

"Puuuuffff~" yawned Cotton, a big pink bubble emerging from his mouth. Nidoking made to evade it, but could not.

Giovanni growled at this. "Come on! Poison Jab!" he ordered.

"NIIIDOOOOH..." Nidoking half-roared, half-yawned as he stumbled forward, right arm glowing purple.

"Now! Use Fire Shield!" Keith commanded.

"Slurpuff~" Cotton responded, a dome of fire surrounding it. Nidoking roared his displeasure as not only was his Poison Jab repelled, but he was also stricken with a burn. And better yet, since there were no arbitrary video game mechanics in play here, the burned Nidoking was able to fall asleep.

"Wake up!" Giovanni bellowed to Nidoking.

"Not a chance," Keith smirked. "Cotton, now use Dream Eater!"

The orb on Cotton's head glowed purple, and the Slurpuff began to consume Nidoking's dreams in great quantities. The Nidoking began to thrash around in his sleep, pained by the super effective attack... and then, with a great roar of displeasure, Nidoking's eyes flew open!

"Uh-oh," Keith murmured.

"Indeed," Giovanni said, his smirk back in place. "Sludge Wave, go!"

"We'll use Sludge Wave as well!" Keith ordered his Slurpuff, and the two Pokémon unleashed their Poison attacks. However, Nidoking's was able to overpower Slurpuff's, not only due to Nidoking sharing a type with the attack in question (and thus being able to put more power behind it), but also due to the Sheer Force Nidoking seemed more than capable of putting behind such attacks. Before long, Cotton was blasted with a deluge of sludge, and came out of it quite unable to continue fighting.

"Come back now, Cotton!" Keith stated, withdrawing Cotton to the spherical pink confines of his Heal Ball. He then turned to the small Weedle by his side. "You're up, Hermione," Keith declared. "Show them what you got!"

"Weedle! Weedle!" Hermione nodded, crawling forward with determination. None of the present Rockets dared question Keith's sanity at this, having seen for themselves how well Hermione fared against their own Pokémon. Nidoking, however, gave a derisive snort at the sight of his pint-sized opponent.

"Watch yourself, Nidoking, it's no joke," warned Giovanni. "Burn it up! Flamethrower!"

"Hermione! Flash!" Keith ordered.

"WEEEEDLE!" Hermione exclaimed, letting loose a blinding light from her head stinger. Nidoking roared in agony, launching a Flamethrower in a completely wrong direction, clutching his burning, temporarily blinded eyes.

"Yes!" Keith grinned. "Now let's use Frosted Flake Fall!"

Hermione's head stinger glowed a soft blue, before firing a beam of the same color straight up into the sky. Immediately, dark clouds billowed into existence above the battlefield, and razor-sharp snowflakes descended upon the combatants. Nidoking roared angrily at this, and though Hermione felt it as well, she didn't dare succumb to it. She knew what Keith would order next, after all.

"And follow up with Aurora Veil!" Keith called out.

"Weeeedle!" Hermione exclaimed- now her head stinger glowed in the colors of the rainbow, and a rainbow screen of energy formed all around her briefly before fading from sight.

"Enough!" snapped Giovanni. "Nidoking, crush it like the bug that it is! Rock Slide!"

"Hermione, Blizzard attack!" Keith declared.

"NIIIIDOOOOOH!" roared Nidoking, summoning numerous rocks to tumble down upon Hermione.

"WEEEEEEEEDLE!" bellowed Hermione, unleashing a howling snowstorm, aided by the Frosted Flake Fall, to hit Nidoking dead-on for super effective damage. Meanwhile, Hermione wasn't sweating the Rock Slide too much. It was super effective, and bolstered by Sheer Force, true enough, but Aurora Veil was cutting all that effectiveness right in half.

Keith grinned- Nidoking was now panting heavily. The Blizzard hadn't frozen him, but the damage it dealt was unmistakable and immense. Not to mention the damage he was taking from his burn and the sharp snowflakes. Granted, said snowflakes were harming Hermione as well, but she seemed to be faring quite a bit better than Nidoking, to the general incredulity of the gathered Rockets, even with how well she'd done in previous battles. It was clear to Keith that Hermione was very likely the only Weedle ever to fare so well against their boss.

If Giovanni felt any frustration or embarrassment at being given such a hard time by a Weedle, he hid it well. There was a look in his eyes that almost seemed nostalgic as he regarded Hermione. "What you have there is no mere bug, for sure," he said to Keith. "We will need to go all-out, Nidoking. Fire Blast!"

"I don't think so! Hermione, Fire Shield!" commanded Keith.

"Weedle!" exclaimed Hermione, erecting yet another Fire Shield to block the Fire Blast.

"Now let 'em have it!" grinned Keith. "Follow up with Psychic!"

"Nidoking! Confusion!" roared Giovanni.

And now it was a clash of Psychic-type moves, Unlike the previous Sludge Wave clash, however, Hermione seemed to have the upper hand. However, Nidoking was not giving up so easily... and before Keith knew it, the colliding attacks exploded, knocking back both combatants! And as the dust settled, Keith could see that they weren't just knocked back- they were knocked out.

"Now, Nidoking, come back," said Giovanni, holding out the Rocket Ball.

"Hermione, come back now!" Keith stated, withdrawing his trusty Weedle.

"Impressive indeed," smirked Giovanni as he readied his third Rocket Ball. "I've never seen a Weedle so determined and powerful, not for a long time. Now- Persian, enter!" he exclaimed, throwing the Rocket Ball.

Keith felt Meowth tense up as Giovanni's third Pokémon appeared. A sleek quadrupedal feline with fur just like Meowth's, and a gleaming ruby in its forehead. Keith took out his Pokédex and pointed it at Persian.

"Persian- Normal Form- the Classy Cat Pokémon, and the evolved form of Meowth. A Normal-type," said the Pokédex. "Persian has a violent temperament, and can inflict deep wounds with its sharp claws. With its lithe muscles, it can walk without making a sound."

Keith turned to Meowth. "You want this one?" he asked.

"Thought ya'd neva ask!" Meowth declared, springing off Keith's shoulder and landing before his evolved form, claws extended, scowling at Persian's derisive chuckle. "Yeah, laugh while ya can, four-legs," Meowth snapped. "I oughta show youse how a real cat gets it done!"

"Alright- Meowth, use Fake Out!" Keith ordered.

"Persian! Fake Out!" Giovanni called.

Both felines moved. Both felines clapped their front paws. Or at least, Persian did. Meowth was too busy flinching from the faster Fake Out to use his own. "Gah!" he grunted. "Wat da-"

"Never mind, Meowth," Keith said as the Frosted Flake Fall cleared up. "Now use Power-Up Punch!"

"Aerial Ace!" ordered Giovanni.

Persian screeched as it charged forward, front paws glowing brightly. Meowth swung a front paw at it, but the two attacks collided, and the Fighting move was not faring well against the Flying move. Nevertheless, however, Meowth persevered, and managed to land the Power-Up Punch even while taking damage from Aerial Ace.

"Great, Meowth!" grinned Keith. "Now use Cut!"

"Repel it with Hyper Voice!" ordered Giovanni.

Persian opened its mouth and yowled loud and long, bombarding Meowth with visible soundwaves. Meowth, right front claws aglow, valiantly stood his ground against the powerful move, and once it had ended, lunged forward to deliver the Cut. Persian screeched its displeasure, especially as Meowth landed on its back.

"Toss Meowth off!" snapped Giovanni.

"Not happening!" declared Keith. "Meowth, use Bite!"

And Meowth indeed bit down on Persian, causing the Classy Cat Pokémon further displeasure. It bucked and lurched, trying to shake Meowth off, but his jaws held on tight, until finally Persian was able to shake its unwelcome passenger.

"All right!" declared Keith as Meowth scrambled back to his feet. "Meowth, good work!"

"Tanks, but we ain't done yet!" Meowth nodded, eyeing Persian warily.

"Persian! Slash!" Giovanni roared.

"Skull Bash, let's go!" Keith ordered.

The pair of felines lunged at each other again, Persian ready to slice up the competition, Meowth charging in headfirst. And sharp though Persian's claws were, Meowth won out with sheer power, knocking Persian to the ground. The evolved Normal-type was not out yet, but was struggling to get back up.

"Now let's finish it!" Keith grinned. "Meowth, Fury Swipes!"

"YAAAAAAAAH!" Meowth exclaimed, lunging at the fallen Persian, taking great swings at it with his sharp claws. And by the time Meowth had settled down and stopped, Persian too had stopped trying to get back up.

"Come back, Persian!" Giovanni said, withdrawing his Normal-type. "You are making things a bit difficult for me now, I see," he said to Keith. "Taking out half my team is no small feat. But with the pride of Team Rocket on the line, by no means will I allow this to hamper my performance going forward." And he threw a fourth Rocket Ball. "Gliscor, enter!"

Keith eyed the creature Giovanni had sent out- almost batlike, with a stinger-tipped tail, and a pair of powerful pincers. He held out his Pokédex once more.

"Gliscor, the Fang Scorpion Pokémon, and the evolved form of Gligar. A Ground and Flying-type," droned the device. "Gliscor hangs from tree branches to observe prey, swooping at the first opportunity. It flies soundlessly and carries off its prey with its lengthy tail, letting its fangs finish the job."

"Ground and Flying, huh?" grinned Keith. "Meowth, use Icy Wind!"

But Giovanni was ready. "Sky Uppercut, let's go!" he ordered.

"Gli!" grunted Gliscor, and in an instant, Meowth was punched high into the air by Gliscor's right pincer. The Icy Wind fizzled out before it started, and as Meowth crashed to the ground, he was not making an attempt to get back up.

"OK, you're done," Keith said, not unkindly, as he scooped Meowth up in his arms. "Don't sweat it, Meowth, you did good," he said with a reassuring smile. "Now, then, who..."

By way of an answer, the Camerupt stepped forward, clearing his throat. "How about lettin' me at him, hat man?" he asked with a grin.

Keith grinned back. "Go for it, Vinny," he nodded.

Giovanni regarded Vinny with an unreadable expression. "You know, this betrayal is not a deal breaker," he said. "Were you to turn on this young man here and now, you would be assured of a position of power when Team Rocket takes over the world."

"I'mma say this as nice as I can- go screw yourself with a Spelon Berry," Vinny responded.

"Somehow I figured that would be your response," nodded Giovanni. "Very well, then. Gliscor, Aqua Tail!"

"Vinny! Stockpile!" Keith ordered.

The Camerupt took a deep breath, storing up power within himself. Gliscor landed an insanely super effective Aqua Tail, but Vinny was able to stand his ground, partly due to the Stockpile, and partly due to his Solid Rock Ability dampening the attack's power.

"Pathetic stalling," smirked Giovanni. "Gliscor, use Aqua Tail once more!"

"Vinny, Stockpile a second time!" stated Keith. And so the attacks repeated themselves, with Vinny taking even less damage than before.

"You can't keep this up forever," Giovanni continued, still smirking.

"Yeah, I guess you're right," Keith smirked back. "So now it's our turn- Vinny, Fire Blast!"

"Double Team!" shouted Giovanni, and in an instant, Vinny's Fire Blast merely disintegrated three or four illusory Gliscor copies. The sky was full of Gliscor now, and there was no telling which was the real one.

"No matter- use Incinerate and burn them all up!" Keith ordered.

"Aqua Tail!" called Giovanni.

Vinny fired a small ember from his front hump, but before it could explode into a wall of fire in midair, the real Gliscor extinguished it with its tail, which was swirling with water. The super effective move then went on to slam Vinny to the ground, though the Camerupt was able to get back up.

"Vinny, don't give up," Keith said encouragingly. "Lava Plume, let's go!"

And this time, before Giovanni could even give a command, Vinny's humps erupted, spraying smoke and flame into the air. Every Gliscor was struck- the illusory copies fizzled out, and the real Gliscor soared up to escape more damage.

"There!" Keith exclaimed, pointing. "Vinny, now use Spit Up!"

"Giga Impact!" roared Giovanni.

Summoning every ounce of Stockpiled power he'd stored up, Vinny unleashed it all in a single powerful beam of pure energy, while Gliscor came diving down, bathed in intense swirling energy. The attacks collided powerfully, and Gliscor continued to charge straight through the Spit Up. It was a slow, tough process, but Gliscor kept going, and managed to slam right into Vinny, causing a great explosion. For a moment, Keith thought it was another tie, but then he saw Gliscor flying up and out of the dust cloud. Giovanni smirked as the dust settled, for it revealed that Vinny had fainted.

"Vinny, get back now!" Keith exclaimed, withdrawing his Camerupt, fedora and all, into his Rocket Ball.

"Not worried, are we?" smirked Giovanni. "You, after all, have fewer Pokémon remaining than I."

"It ain't over til it's over!" Keith stated confidently. "It's time to fight flyer with flyer! Apamin!" he exclaimed, to which his Vespiquen responded confidently. "Use Confuse Ray!" Keith ordered.

"Strike it down! Stone Edge!" Giovanni ordered.

Keith gritted his teeth- Stone Edge would hit Apamin's greatest weakness, and that just wouldn't do. However, the Vespiquen, stubborn and prideful though she could so often be, was far from stupid. She swerved, swooped, and darted her way around every single sharpened stone Gliscor shot her way before retaliating with the dazzling and disorienting Confuse Ray, making Gliscor's flight patterns rather erratic.

"Nice!" Keith grinned. "Now use Defend Order!"

"Snap out of it, Gliscor!" roared Giovanni. "Use Stone Edge once again!"

But it was no good- Gliscor merely punched itself in the face with one of its pincers while Apamin summoned Combee from all over the world to bolster her defenses.

"Let's turn this around!" Keith declared. "Apa, use Slash!"

"It won't work!" roared Giovanni. "Use Fire Fang!"

And this time, Gliscor was able to do as ordered. Its mouth ignited, Gliscor flew at the oncoming Vespiquen, biting down at the same time as she landed the Slash attack. Apamin gave a deep, displeased buzz at the Fire Fang, though Gliscor wasn't looking so hot itself- having to fly straight through a two-Stockpile Spit Up seemed to be starting to take its toll.

And Keith noticed this, too. "Alright! Apa, Sweet Scent!" he ordered.

"Don't let it! Use Wing Attack!" said Giovanni. However, as Gliscor flew forward, it flew right into the pink mist Apamin was letting off, and was immediately entranced by the scent. It drew closer and closer, all thoughts of attacking fading fast. "No!" Giovanni roared.

"Yes!" Keith grinned. "Do it! Fell Stinger attack!"

An ominous green glow emanated from the big stinger within the hive that was part of the Vespiquen's body. And with no warning, quite suddenly, she struck! Gliscor was knocked out of the sky, and as it crashed to the ground, Apamin could feel herself powering up, a telltale sign that her foe had fallen.

"Come back, Gliscor," frowned Giovanni, withdrawing the Fang Scorpion Pokémon. "This could be problematic," he murmured, but his smirk returned as he produced a fifth Rocket Ball. "But then, perhaps not," he sneered, throwing the ball. "Rhyperior, enter!"

Keith gritted his teeth- Rhyperior could be a big problem. Very high Defense, and a definite type advantage to boot. But no- he had to have more faith in Apamin than that. She had mildly increased Defense, drastically increased Attack, and way more determination than your average Vespiquen. "Apamin, go for it!" he exclaimed. "Fury Cutter!"

Giovanni smirked. "Use Rock Wrecker," he said simply.

Apamin buzzed with determination, just barely managing to fly around the massive boulder Rhyperior fired off, and with her claws glowing green, the Vespiquen started swiping away at Rhyperior, each strike dealing more damage than the last. And with Rhyperior having just fired off such an exhausting move, it couldn't even move to defend itself against the souped-up Vespiquen.

"Snap out of it and use Rock Blast!" Giovanni exclaimed.

"Grr... Groooohhh!" Rhyperior grunted, starting to move once more. Taking aim with its arms, Rhyperior charged up a number of sizable rocks.

"Apa, get out of there!" Keith said urgently.

"Quen! Quen! Quen!" buzzed Apamin, flying up and away from Rhyperior, swerving and dodging around as many rocks as she could, but some of them struck her nevertheless. However, the Defend Order was doing its work, and Apamin remained airborne.

"Quick, use Flamethrower right now!" ordered Giovanni.

"Dodge it!" Keith exclaimed, but no good- Rhyperior landed the Flamethrower in no time. "Come on, Apamin, fight back!" Keith called to his slightly-singed Vespiquen. "Bug Bite, let's go!"

"I'm afraid you're simply outmatched," smirked Giovanni. "Rhyperior, Smack Down!"

"Apa, quick, Confuse Ray!" Keith called desperately, but once again, Rhyperior was too fast, and fired a single glowing stone projectile. This one knocked Apamin clean out of the air, the Vespiquen now struggling to move, stuck on the ground.

"And finish it!" smirked Giovanni. "Stomp!"

"Apamin! Destiny Bond!" Keith exclaimed. Even as he spoke, Rhyperior was almost upon Apamin... but a glow in the Vespiquen's eyes as the Stomp knocked her out told Keith that the attack had succeeded. And even if that hadn't clued him in, Rhyperior suddenly passing out certainly would have.

"So," said Giovanni as he withdrew Rhyperior. "We're each down to our last Pokémon." He took a moment to glance dubiously at Tinnitus. "I haven't heard a single sound from your Palpitoad," he added. "Unusual for its species. I would know- Ground-types are something of a specialty of mind, after all."

"Yeah, well, Tinnitus has never been able to speak," Keith stated. "That doesn't mean he can't fight!" Tinnitus nodded his agreement, smiling up at his Trainer.

"Well, we'll soon see," Giovanni stated, throwing his sixth Rocket Ball. "Beedrill, enter!"

Keith's eyes widened- not at the Beedrill Giovanni sent out so much as the gleaming gemstone strapped to one of its stingers. "Is that-"

"A Beedrillite? Why, yes, yes it is," smirked Giovanni. "And I take it you know what this is as well," he added, reaching for his pocket. Keith tensed up as Giovanni drew a pistol from his pocket, but in the next instant he saw that the weapon couldn't possibly fire a bullet, for there was a Key Stone set into the barrel. Not that this made him much more relaxed, though, of course.

Keith looked at Tinnitus. "Well... ready, Tinny?" he asked. The Palpitoad responded with confident, reassuring vibrations and a smile just as confident and reassuring, before hopping forward onto the battlefield.

"Oh, you're not ready," sneered Giovanni. "Nobody ever is. And now!" he roared. "Beedrill! Unleash your true power, and show the full extent of what Team Rocket can do!" He took aim with the pistol and pulled the trigger. "Mega Evolve!!!"

If Keith needed any further proof that the gun had been modified to have no functional firing mechanism whatsoever, this here was it. The gun made no noise other than a quiet click as Giovanni pulled the trigger. As he pulled it, however, the tendrils of energy snaked out of the Key Stone, as did the tendrils of energy from the Beedrillite. They met in midair, linking Giovanni's Mega Gun to Beedrill's Beedrillite- linking Giovanni to Beedrill! And the Mega Evolution took place, a sleek and deadly Mega Beedrill flying before them. Several of the Grunts exchanged grins at this, evidently very confident in their boss's secret weapon.

"Let's do this, Tinnitus," Keith said fearlessly. "Use Supersonic!"

"I think not! Fury Attack!" roared Giovanni.

And in an instant, Tinnitus was pinned down by one of Mega Beedrill's stingers, while the other four started pelting it with attacks. And the last one was delivered with the powerful tail stinger, sending the Palpitoad flying backwards.

"Tinnitus!" Keith exclaimed, a note of fear showing in his voice for the first time- if Tinnitus couldn't beat Mega Beedrill, this would mean Giovanni won! And even if Keith refused, he knew that with no conscious Pokémon on hand, and Giovanni with a conscious Beedrill, there was no question of trying to resist their attempts to steal all his Pokémon. "Come on, buddy, you can do this! Turn this around! Rain Dance, let's go!"

The bumps on Tinnitus's head glowed blue, and in an instant, dark clouds formed over the battlefield for the second time that day. Rain clouds, this time, however, if the immediate downpour was any indicator.

"Beedrill! Twineedle!" grinned Giovanni.

"Use Muddy Water!" Keith exclaimed.

Beedrill flew in fast, but Tinnitus was able to meet it with his own attack- mouth open wide, the Palpitoad fired a powerful stream of brown water. Beedrill pushed right through it, of course, but not without considerable effort- the rain was strengthening the Water attack.

Keith winced as the Twineedle hits landed, and a purple tint on the Palpitoad's forehead told Keith that Tinnitus had been poisoned... for all of two seconds before the rain seemed to literally wash it away. Keith grinned- Tinnitus's Hydration had kicked in, the rain helping him to recover from the status affliction. "Awesome!" Keith grinned. "Now let's turn this around! Bubble Beam!"

Once more, Tinnitus opened his mouth, and once more he fired a powerful Water move from within. This time, it was a powerful spray of foam that struck the Mega Beedrill. Indeed, some of the foam stuck to its wings, which Keith took notice of- this would impact its Speed!

"It's useless!" Giovanni exclaimed. "You cannot beat my Mega Beedrill! Not with your mute Palpitoad! Beedrill, finish it now! Pin Missile attack, maximum power!"

"Aqua Ring!" Keith commanded desperately. And while Beedrill fired numerous glowing green needle-like projectiles, Tinnitus formed a number of rings of water all around himself. They did nothing to stop the attack, but they did start to help heal off the damage.

Tinnitus glanced back at Keith. He was trying to remain confident, but he was starting to sweat, starting to panic. And not without reason- if Tinnitus lost this battle, Keith lost. And if Keith lost, things were going to be very bad. Tinnitus, all his teammates, Team Rocket would take them all. And Keith was doing his very best to prevent that from happening. But now it all fell to Tinnitus. He looked back at Mega Beedrill- he had to defeat it. He absolutely had to. With so much at stake, failure was not an option.

Keith's eyes widened. Through the pouring rain, a bright blue-white light became visible. It came from right where Tinnitus was standing. It was Tinnitus! "What?!" growled Giovanni.

"Oh, yeah!" Keith grinned as Tinnitus started to change shape. "It's happening!"

And indeed it was. Tinnitus's small tail finally vanished for good. Legs, actual legs, sprouted from beneath him, as the bumps on his sides grew out to form arms. His forehead bump split into two, and more bumps formed all down his back, and the glow soon faded, revealing a strong yet silent , looking more ready than ever to kick some ass.

"Grr, so it evolved," scoffed Giovanni. "It changes nothing!" Keith, meanwhile, had pointed his Pokédex once more, but this time at his Pokémon.

"Seismitoad, the Vibration Pokémon, and the evolved form of Palpitoad. A Water and Ground-type," said the Pokédex. "Seismitoad vibrates the bumps on its fists to increase the power of its punches. Just one punch allows it to turn a boulder to rubble."

"Awesome," Keith grinned. "And you even learned a new move on top of it all! Tinnitus, use Acid!"

The newly-evolved Seismitoad opened his mouth, and, for the first time ever, unleashed the caustic Poison-type move. Even when not very effective, Beedrill buzzed its displeasure at taking such an attack, the corrosive fluid having done a number on its Special Defense.

"Beedrill, use X-Scissor! Finish it!" roared Giovanni.

"Not happening! Muddy Water!" Keith exclaimed.

And this time, the Seismitoad's Muddy Water was able to repel Mega Beedrill's attack. It couldn't power through the Muddy Water- evolution seemed to have been quite kind to Tinnitus in terms of newfound strength. The rain, at that point, let up quite quickly. As the sun shone through once again, Keith knew the time was now.

"Let's finish this!" Keith declared, moving his arms, the Poisonium Z in his Z-Ring gleaming brightly as he did so.

"What... But that's-" murmured Giovanni.

"Our minds, our spirits, linked as one!" Keith was saying as he moved. "A power as intense as the Plague Swamp of Cascadia! Feel the poison- BE the poison!"

As he said this, Z-Power flowed freely from the Poisonium Z, right into Tinnitus. He may have only just learned Acid, but the move was getting powered up right here and now, and the Seismitoad was ready, ready to unleash a full-force attack.

"Ready, now!" Keith exclaimed. "Full power- use Acid Downpour!!!"


Code:
  
Tinnitus surrounded itself with its Z-Power!

Tinnitus unleashes its full-force Z-Move!

...



Acid Downpour
Swirls of poisonous energy spiraled out from Tinnitus, and the very ground beneath Mega Beedrill turned to a smelly, horribly poisonous swamp. At the same time, vicious purple clouds formed above the Bug/Poison-type, and once Tinnitus let loose the energy, the clouds opened up and rained a horribly poisonous substance down onto the Beedrill, reacting with the swamp below to deal even more damage. And then, it was all gone, nothing left but one completely knocked-out, un-Mega'd, Beedrill.

Giovanni sank to his knees as he wordlessly withdrew his Beedrill. "I... I lost?" he murmured, sounding shocked.

"Alright," said Keith, approaching the disgraced Team Rocket boss. "A deal's a deal, right? You gotta disband Team Rocket now."

Giovanni stood back up, regarding Keith in silence for a moment, looking deep in thought with an unreadable expression. Then, with a slight bow of the head, he spoke up once again. "...Well, I've done it once before," he said quietly. "And... whatever my other faults, never let it be said I'm not a man of my word."

"M-Mr. Giovanni!" exclaimed a Grunt.

Giovanni turned to face his underlings. "Get the word out to all our operatives," he stated. "Team Rocket is finished now. What you do now is up to you." The grunts looked less than thrilled about this, though started to file into the helicopter. Some of them rather looked as though they might want to revive Team Rocket themselves someday, though Keith so dearly hoped it would never come to it.

"...I'm gonna be honest, I wasn't sure you'd keep your word," Keith remarked, sounding mildly impressed.

"World domination is a lofty goal," said Giovanni. "Too lofty to attain, yet enticing enough to make some people too greedy to see that. I... shall go," he said. "I will train, train my Pokémon, and think about what I should do. When the time comes, I will make my fresh start. Keith. I cannot make promises as to the rest of Team Rocket, but from me, you will have no more trouble. However, be warned- my last attempt at disbanding Team Rocket didn't exactly take. It stands to reason that this time may not be so different."

"Noted," Keith nodded.

Giovanni offered his hand to Keith. "I hope we meet again, perhaps even have a rematch," he said. "And that when we do, it will be on better terms."

Keith hesitated for a moment, then gave a small smile and shook Giovanni's hand. "Same here," he nodded.

Giovanni gave a small smile. "It was a good battle," he stated. He turned his attention to Seismitoad. "Your Seismitoad is remarkable," he added. "You've raised him well- I only ask you continue to do so." With that, he walked away- the grunts had long since took off in the helicopter.

"Well," Keith remarked, once he and Tinnitus were the only ones present in the clearing. "Gotta say, I never would have seen this one coming." The Seismitoad nodded in agreement. "Alright," said Keith. "So, what say we get on over to the Pokémon Center? I should really have Helena manning it at all times, honestly... But yeah, you guys need some rest, and if you're anything like me, something to eat." And this time, Tinnitus's nodding was much more emphatic as he followed his Trainer to the Pokémon Center.


Code:
What? Palpitoad is evolving!



...

...

...!



Congratulations! Your Palpitoad evolved into Seismitoad!

*Tinnitus learned Acid!*

Last edited by Missingno. Master; 10-23-2017 at 04:22 PM.
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