RouteSaga 48: [Special Episode] Battle Camp
A/N: Unfortunately, I haven't beaten Sun, so these are based off Gen VI.
"...and we'll see how the next few games go. The time is now 7 am and it's a beautiful morning in the Route. Once again, this is your favorite talk host Apsa, bringing you regular e-sports updates and memes..."
Maestra woke to the sound of Reveille playing across camp. Emerging from her tent, she rubbed her eyes and stared around the campsite.
Fexible and Metatyph were standing nearby, only half-awake. Toxikyle and Bovinlep were down by the lake. Humming, Twiggy planted little flowers around her tent.
"Good morning, Route Scouts!" announced Sparkleaf. "Today is February 31st, 20XX. Welcome to the second day of your weekend at Bat... hm?"
Lowering the megaphone, the fox turned to see an annoyed Frosti. "Hey Spark, what's all this?" she demanded, pointing inside the staff tent. Cots, duffel bags, and the floor were all covered in tan fox hair.
Sparkleaf blinked. "Something wrong?" asked the fox innocently, opening a bag of chips and popping a few into his mouth. "Mmm, sour cream and onion..."
"Achoo!" SkyWarrior came out of the tent, sneezing. "Sparksss. You're tracking fur everywhere! Even on Nep's stuff and she's not even here. Is it shedding season for you or something?!"
"S-sorry, I'll clean it up after breakfast," said Sparkleaf quickly between mouthfuls of chips. "That fine?"
"It's not fine at all, you stupid fox," groused Frosti. "Now there's fox hair in my paint. How am I supposed to finish Selas's present now?!"
The fox held up his paws. "Give her a fox tail?" he suggested lightly.
Frosti spent the rest of the morning chasing Sparkleaf around camp with an icicle spear.
A dozen or so Routians gathered by the campfire, all dressed in their Route Scout uniforms. "Welcome to Battle Camp! I'm sure you're all eager to start battling," said Sparkleaf as Audino technicians set up a screen and projector nearby. "But first, an introductory video!"
He raised his tail, and the Audinos activated the projector.The large screen displayed Sparkleaf and Frosti at opposite sides of a battle ring. Oddly, in the video, Sparkleaf didn't look like a fox at all. In fact, he appeared to be cosplaying as a human OC of his.
Sprinting forward, Sparkleaf's Leafeon slashed Frosti's Garchomp across the knees with leaf blades, the great dragon crashing to the ground. "Yes!" cried Sparkleaf triumphantly, pumpimg an arm.
Frosti glared at him. " Oh yeah? Well take this!" Holding up a Poke Nall, she yelled, "FURRET POWER!" She clicked the button, and her Furret appeared in a blaze of white light.
"Good job, Thalia!" Recalling his Leafeon, Sparkleaf sent out his Lucario. "You're on, Lyther!"
The camera zoomed in as Lyther and Scout stared each other down. "Murder 'em all, Scout!" yelled Frosti, poiting at Sparkleaf.
As Scout sprinted across the battle ring, Lyther drew back his hands, an Aura Sphere gathering between his palms.
Bam! Right as Scout sprang in for the kill, Lyther's Aura Sphere smashed into the Furret, knocking her head over tail.
The short reel came to an end, and the Audinos shut off the projector. "Good times, good times," said Sparkleaf, applauding.
Frosti's eye twitched. "Anyway! Let's explain camp rules," said the coordinator. "Battles will be conducted in Single Battle format. That means the Pokemon at the top of your party selection screen will be sent out first!"
"Party selection screen?" muttered TheAnonymousEevee to Pixel, who just shrugged.
"Once a battle has begun, participants are expected to see it out to the end," said SkyWarrior. "If you are called up to participate, but you don't think you can stay for the whole match, please let us know beforehand so that we can pick a substitute!"
"Between sets, you may visit the Trading Post down by the lake," said Frosti, pointing down toward the lake. "There, you can rent Pokemon, train Pokemon, and purchase equipment for your Pokemon. Courtesy of Nep, who isn't here."
"Naturally, we will also participate in sets," added Sparkleaf. "For everyone's safety, please do not conduct battles outside the battle ring, as we WILL send you home." Glumly, thekingofpillowland's head drooped. "Now, let's get started!"
Meanwhile, down by the trading post, a loud roar disrupted the morning air. Irritably, Hyuponia opened the window blinds and peered down at the street. "What's going on out there? Don't make me get involved... eh?"
Outside, a truck with badly JPG-ified fan art of Torch and Rose came roaring down the road. As the truck rolled over a rock, a pile of wraiths spilled out the back.
Around the trading post, Route Scouts stared at the wraiths floating in the middle of the road.
With an ear-splitting scream, one wraith flew at AstyrLuna, drawing out a scream from her to join its own. Immediately, Route Scouts scattered, some tumbling into the lake. Shuddering, Hyuponia quickly shut the blinds and crawled back into bed.
Inside the trading post, Lemon peeked out from behind the counter. "What the heck?" she muttered, staring at the swarming wraiths and screaming scouts. "Hey, wait..."
She squinted at the nearest one, which had snared Arkangel. Was that a serial number on the wraith's back? Looked like a roleplay bar code. "Ooh! Is that a Screamer from that one RP?"
----------"Next set: DarkPegusus and Twiggy."
Lush grass and concrete pavement formed a Poke Ball's shape, just as Fexible had intended when she first built the battle arena for her unfinished Routefics. Twiggy stood across the battle ring from DarkPegusus, grinning.
"Haha! No one can best the Rose Lady," cried Twiggy, sending out her Roserade. Lifting one rose-hand, the Roserade twirled around elegantly. "Crush them all, my lovely...!"
She trailed off as she saw DP's Talonflame, chirping away happily. Her Roserade shuddered and covered its face. "What?! Aw, come on!"
Down by the lake, the Screamers continued to swarm the area outside the trading post. As they pinned down Route Scouts, sheer pain filled the Scouts until they, too, screamed with their captors.
Lemon kept her eyes on the Screamers as she called up Apsa's studio, back in Shioko City. "What was that?" said Apsa from the other end. "I can't hear you over all that screaming!"
Lemon sighed. "I said, we've got some escaped RP enemies," she repeated, cupping her hand over the mic to block out the Screamers and screaming Routians. "Looks like it's from the one about the post-apocalyptic world?"
"Oooh! That one! Yeah, I definitely know which post-apocalyptic RP you mean." Apsa paused thoughtfully. "Start recording, okay? I bet Mega Cloud will show up soon!"
----------"Next set: Aura-Flare and Maestra."
Two down on each side. Aura-Flare and Maestra stared at each other from across the ring. All around them, Route Scouts watched eagerly.
Aura-Flare rubbed his wrists. "I'm going to lose, aren't I. Aw crap, I'm going to lose..."
"What? Giving up already?" said Maestra with a sly grin.
A fire lit in Aura's eyes. "No, never!" he declared, holding up his Empoleon's Poke Ball. "Okay, here goes! Hyaaaaah!"
As his Empoleon materialized in a flash of light, Aura-Flare stared across the field at Maestra's Arcanine. Everyone watching held their breath.
As the Empoleon lowered its head for a deadly trident charge, the Arcanine shuffled up to the great penguin and BARKed loudly in its face. Startled, the Empoleon fell squarely on its back, fins flailing helplessly.
Grinning cheekily, Maestra hugged her Arcanine. "Good doge. Who's a good boy? You're a good boy."
Hurrying down the hill, Twiggy pulled out her phone and dialed up Grifray. "Hey, I've finished up my matches."
"Really? How'd it go?"
She made a disgusted sound. "Not great. Anyway, we've got a lead at the trading post. See you there, Pokey."
"Told you to stop calling me that. It's Lars now."
She slapped her forehead. "Ah right, my bad! Anyway, see you soon-- argh!"
Nearly dropping her phone, Twiggy scrambled out of the way as a Manectric went streaking past her, down the trail toward the lake. "What the heck?"
"Next set: Metatyph and Frosti."
On the sidelines, DarkPegusus shuddered as Frosti sent out her Flygon. "That thing is the devil," he said viciously, pointing at the Flygon.
Frosti rolled her eyes. "Peggy's a sore loser. Let's get on with it, yeah?"
Fwoosh! Metatyph's Ampharos went down in a blaze of dragonflame.
Fwoosh! Metatyph's Typhlosion went down in a blaze of dragonflame.
Metatyph closed his eyes. "This is it," he whispered delicately, raising his last Poke Ball to his lips for a gentle kiss. "Kangaskhan! Let's do this!"
Frosti blinked as Metatyph sent out his Kangaskhan. "Eh...?"
One punch, two punches.
Red punch, blue punch.
Kanga moved without a sound.
Frosti's Flygon was on the ground.
Pinned down by the Screamers, AstyrLuna stared as Sparkleaf’s Manectric tried to round up the Screamers with barks and growls, but was struggling. Every time a Screamer touched the dog, it recoiled with a whimper.
At that moment, Mega Cloud descended from the sky, skirt and wings rippling in the wind. “Behold! Mega Cloud, defender of fluffy skies! In the name of the floof, I will--”
The rest of Clouded-Immortal’s words were cut off as she missed the trading post altogether and landed in the lake with a great splash.
Stunned, Lemon lowered her phone and ended the recording. "Lemon?” hissed Apsa. ”You okay? Get out of there, now!"
"Next set: Sparkleaf and Metal."
Things weren't looking good for the fox. They were barely five minutes into the battle, and Sparkleaf had already lost half his team. "Don't worry! I've saved the best for last," said the fox, holding up his third Poke Ball with a tail. "Insyte, you're on!"
Shrill squeals filled the air as the magnificent Flareon appeared next to his Delphox in a flash of golden light. "Insyte, Attract!" ordered Sparkleaf, pointing a paw at Metal's Aegislash.
Bounding up to Metal's Aegislash, Insyte rolled onto his back and looked seductively at the Aegislash. The sword blushed a deep red.
Sighing, Metal covered his eyes. On the sidelines, Frosti sank to the ground with laughter while Fexible glared at the Aegislash, seething with jealousy.
Grabbing a tin of Shoal Salt, Lemon began salting down the edges of the room as the Screamers surrounded the trading post.
Kyupeta peeked out from behind a package on a shelf in the corner. "Psst, hey, girl with the lemon head," she hissed. "Yeah, you. Come over here."
Lemon threw a pebble at the Incubator. "No, go away."
"No need to be such a sourpuss," said Kyupeta with mock indignation. "I just want to make a contract--"
At that moment, the Screamers outside scattered, their screams fading. Lemon’s skin prickled as she heard a series of electrifying howls filling the air.
"There you are!" snarled Flutterbolt as she and Grifray crashed through the window. “Nep! Come out here!”
Eyes widening, Kyupeta leapt down from the shelf and scurried under the counter. Lemon ducked as Flutterbolt climbed up onto the counter, snarling. Knocking over boxes of Hyper Potions and Max Revives, Grifray chased Kyupeta around the trading post.
Outside, the Route Scouts were slowly recovering. Slowly, Toxikyle and Bovinlep got to their feet, breathing heavily. At the water’s edge, AstyrLuna was fishing Mega Cloud out of the lake.
“Twigs! She’s getting away!” yelled Grifray. As Flutterbolt and Grifray burst out of the trading post, AstyrLuna blinked and glanced around. Out of the corner of her eye, she glimpsed something white streaking into the bushes, a radiant ruby eye looking back at her...
"Final set: Sparkleaf, Metatyph, Maestra, Fexible."
By afternoon, there were only a handful of battlers left at the ring. Yawning, Frosti and SkyWarrior watched from afar as Sparkleaf's Milotic and Metatyph's Aegislash stared down Maestra's Arcanine and Fexible's Skarmory.
"All right! Hydro Pump!" called Sparkleaf, pointing. Nodding, the Milotic fired a blast of pressurized water at Fexib’es Skarmory.
Seemingly unfazed, Fexible's Skarmory continued to hover above the ground.
"Come on, Sparks,” said Typh. “What're you waiting for? Get your Manectric out."
The fox's eyes darted from side to side. "Right, so here's a funny story," said Sparkleaf as they all stared at him. "You know how I made bring my Manectric wherever I go, and would never, ever part ways with him? Uh... see... hesnothererightnow."
Horrified, Maestra and Metatyph stared at Fexible's Skarmory.
That night, at the campfire, Twiggy and Lars reported to the camp staff. “A truck with bad PttR art on it?” Sky’s eyes narrowed. “Hey, Snowy, you don’t think that was…”
Twiggy shifted uncomfortably. “Anyway, that’s why the trading post is trashed,” she explained awkwardly. “And Nep still got away, too. Damnit!”
Sparkleaf stared at them. "Screamers attacked, and you didn't think to call for help? We had two directors and a coordinator here!"
Twiggy and Lars exchanged glances. "W-well, no,” said Twiggy, fidgeting. “I mean, finding Nep’s a personal issue and all, so we didn’t really--”
Sparkleaf sighed and covered his eyes with a paw. "Please report everything, no matter how trivial. This has been a PSA!"
“Ugh, what a day,” groaned Lemon, flopping down onto her cot. “And we didn’t even get any footage of Cloudy in action..”
She frowned. That was right. Kyupeta! Might Kyupeta be the source of all the magical girls popping up lately?
“Oh yeah, I’ve got something for you.” Lemon handed Hyuponia the package on the shelf that Kyupeta had been hiding behind.
Blinking, Hyuponia stared at the package...