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10/14 c8 2Caellach Tiger Eye
Oof… *inhales sharply* I felt that; Casey’s emotional state throughout this chapter was prevalent throughout this chapter, both at a conscience AND unconscious level. You conveyed the pain superbly, such that the fact she wouldn’t — couldn’t — even put the matter into words didn’t FEEL like you the author was making the choice to withhold it from the audience; Casey is, in a way, denying this truth to herself, as she wishes this secret was absolutely not a thing at all. It’s tearing her up from within, and it’s all she can do to muster enough courage and confess to it.

In addition to this, we’re continuing almost right off from the previous chapter, with the most canon-divergent material yet (previously it was Chapter 4 with the fallout of Charizard’s departure and establishing Casey’s trauma). For all that Casey’s feeling trapped and this pervades the atmosphere of the chapter, she’s not absent from the surrounding events, even welcoming the distraction from her own angst. It’s simultaneously fitting and ironic that Growlithe, lost in his own hurt and trying to resolve it by beating Cyndaquil to prove his strength to Paul, is the one who both pulls her out of her self-loathing and prompts her to show her strength and compassion as a person; even as she fails to see these things in herself, she can see the potential in Growlithe where Paul can’t, and her encouraging it by relating to their shared struggles (between being who they truly are and wanting to please others) gives Growlithe the courage to begin putting Paul behind him and to step boldly into a new life with Casey; someone who will encourage his true self and his better qualities, his inner beauty. While it doesn’t hurt that his colouring is especially appealing to Casey, I don’t think she’d take this step if she didn’t also see his inner qualities and connect with them; it’s serendipitous in a way that they crossed paths, and it lets her find her own courage too.

That’s without my appreciation for Ash, who extolls the fact that he’d never force a Pokémon onto his team and still shows kindness despite its undue aggression towards him. Also for Cyndaquil who is a trooper despite his own shortcomings (that reflect his potential too), and learns from Ash’s capacity for spontaneous improvising, and the others who are nothing but good people concerned for their friend’s clear turmoil at the hands of a bully; which of course makes Casey feel worse for not confiding in her, but she does this precisely because of her fear that these good people — these true friends — will react with disgust and rejection. If they too don’t accept her then maybe the problem is her… which it’s not, but damn if it doesn’t feel that way, right? But as her idols don’t back down — as Growlithe didn’t— then neither should she.

Can you tell how much I love this chapter? Because cripes, I really do mate. Here’s hoping the next one delivers, but I’m confident it will.

Gods-SPEED!
10/14 c8 Reader
Cyndaquil having a rival might be good for it so can push itself a bit more
Maybe it will be better prepared for Bugsy and Miki
Looking forward to the reveal
10/5 c7 Reader
Paul was interesting addition
Maybe have him steal Casey's Elekid catch
Paul also can get his Johto Pokémon here
Elekid, Magby, Sneasal, Murkrow and Teddiursa

Can you do the Fire type competition mentioned in EP190 : The Stolen Stones!
Competitors will be Ash with Cyndaquil, Casey with Growlithe, Egan with his fire tyoes, Macey with her fire types, Harrison with Houndoom and/or Blaziken, Gary with Magmar, Arcanine and/or Houndoom, Ritchie with Zippo and Paul with Magby

Also can Ritchie and Miki be Silver Conference rivals
Ritchie is already in Johto and Miki leaves to collect badges after losing to Ash
Sakura starts a bit late so might not make it
10/5 c6 Reader
Mareep is a welcome addition to the team
Maybe can have it be jealous when Casey gets Elekid and Casey learns she needs to love all her Pokémon regardless of there association to her favorite team
10/5 c5 Reader
This was an interesting Chikorita chapter
10/5 c4 Reader
Casey comforting Ash was sweet
10/5 c3 Reader
Was not expecting Casey to win with Chikorita
The nickname was funny
10/5 c2 Reader
Joint Chikorita training sessions will be interesting
For Casey vs Falkner, it will have to be Casey with Rattata and Pidgey vs Falkner with Hoothoot and Murkrow
Maybe teach Rattata Thunder Fang
10/5 c1 Reader
Interesting idea
My suggestions for Casey's longterm team are:
Meganium, Electabuzz, Beedrill, Umbreon, Golduck (formerly yellow and black Psyduck) and Shiny Arcanine (yellow and black)
Reserves:
Raticate, Pidgeot and Giraferaig (sort of yellow and black)
10/5 c7 Caellach Tiger Eye
Oh, wow. This chapter’s… quite a lot to take in. For multiple reasons, but I’m not going to focus on the *nudge-nudge-wink*, you know? The pieces are there for those who can find and put them together, and they’ll definitely make sense in the next couple of chapters as you’re indicating.

[Also BTW, you used the wrong pronouns for Babe at one point (after he had pulled Cyndaquil to safety), just thought you should know. ;-)]

So then, Paul… happened, I guess is the right word? That’s kinda what he does — he appears, and he happens; seems a pretty apt descriptor for how his presence impacts the plot and the characters around him. But putting aside the parts of him we’re familiar with because of DP, having him replace the Cyndaquil-hunting trainer whose name I never remember works in multiple ways: first it removes the poor man’s substitute who only appeared once, with a longterm character who is to Damian what Ringo Starr was to Pete Best; second, while he follows a few similar beats in the context of the chapter itself, his impact goes beyond being an antagonistic nuisance as he briefly holds back Team Rocket but even more important is how he reacts to Casey… yikes, but sadly knowing him I can’t claim to be surprised by it. Additionally, while it’s not that shocking for us to witness his mistreatment of Pokémon that don’t meet his standards it’s still rough as hell… and yeah, just as the sun and moon eclipse each other, it’s evident that Growlithe’ll be coming back soon enough. Both being a shiny and one that features Casey’s favourite colouring? Please.

So, the fact that Casey has a cousin like that’s pretty awful for her (and the implications of why he’s such a dick specifically to her), but on the flipside I can’t see Reggie being anything but kind to her (after all, the fact he’s so much like Ash just added to why Paul was so frustrated with our intrepid protagonist); that said I’m not expecting to see Reggie until at least the Silver Conference, and that’s assuming that Paul does feature there given he’s apparently more Casey’s rival here? In canon I took the implications to suggest that Paul didn’t necessarily compete in the exact Leagues that Ash did at the same time, but given how big they were it’s not inconceivable there’s a bit of overlap (and if not in canon, I don’t mind that element in this story specifically because it’s an AU of a sort).

Even so… yeah, it’s pretty clear why Casey’s struggling at this point. This chapter puts her raw feelings quite front and centre despite not being her POV, and it’s felt in how her friends want to help her even if they don’t know why she’s being mistreated by a family member KR why it’s getting to her THIS much. To the point that she needs to vent in the only way she knows, and the GS Ball is as good a baseball as any (especially if she’s hitting it with Great Force; so long as she doesn’t lose it, nobody minds on the off-chance it actually breaks open. So yeah, go ahead Casey. :-D) But that moment with Ash… I saw what you did there; think something caught in my throat when I first read it (and sure is just writing about and thinking on it). But as per her raw emotional state, Casey’s… not quite ready to share things with Ash and the others; she tries to, and I’d say it’s getting to the point that she will soon, but she needs a little longer before we’re there.

Besides some of the other little changes though, I kind of like how unlike in canon (where Ash catches Cyndaquil outright to save it), here he’s given the chance to properly make an impression on the little one before doing so; it’s not that he’s bad for doing what he did in canon, but this shows his better side more strongly and makes him feel like he earned his new teammate’s trust. So when he’s ready to fight Paul for Cyndaquil, the little mouse actually wants to prove itself to him and despite not being able to call its flames again (which is a nice nod to that issue well before the Skarmory episode happens) it does prove itself. Albeit not to Paul, who both loses interest in it and becomes convinced that Growlithe really isn’t worth his time (if not for this battle he MIGHT have given it a bit longer despite his earlier threats, as he’s not quite unwilling to do so, but that sealed the deal…)

And a couple of lighter things. First, Jackie taking to her new life as a battling Pokémon with gusto, even learning a form of Electro Ball based on her new partner’s passion for baseball, is adorably awesome. Second, that Ash and Casey can tease each other about their little poses whenever they’re victorious, finding it a bit silly but respecting each other in a way; that’s the Birds of a Feather type of thing that doesn’t make them feel too similar, but complimentary, and I love it. We know that Ash kind of finds her doing it cute, and I think she’s fondly amused by it (plus, with the events that just happened, I think it helped her relax a small bit… if only for a moment).

I’m happy to see you were able to make this work so well, and the wait was not only a surprise but worth it. It’s definitely rough to try and rewrite canon events when a lot aren’t changed much, but I feel like it’s slowly shifting to its own course even if the overall plot beats don’t change much. I’m appreciative of how things are playing out, and keenly anticipate the next chapter. Whether it’s BFY, MITC, or something else that gets your next update though, I’m all excited for it mate.

Gods-SPEED!
7/21 c5 7kitsunelover300
I must say that this has been one of the most original ideas I have heard for a “second female travel companion” arc, but I do love how it’s playing out.

Ash and Casey have some really good chemistry that is on display, though their age may keep things from really flying off until later. But I feel Casey will blossom in her time with the group, especially with Ash’s penchant for encountering legendaries.

Speaking of, will you be doing the movies as part of this, and do you intend to fix up some of the Johto events to maybe fit more with the game universe. Especially since Mewtwo returns occurs in this region, and we have a bunch of Team Rocket conflicts that both do and don’t connect.
Looking back on it, Johto was a very weird series, though one I still love since Movie 3 and the Larvitar Arc were some of my favorites.

Lastly, I had some ideas for Pokémon Casey could add to her team: Mareep (since Ampharos fits her love of yellow and striped Pokémon)
Aipom (I honestly think Aipom is perfect for a sporty girl like Casey)
Shiny Growlithe (since Johto introduced shinies and Ash gets a shiny Noctowl, why not have Casey get a shiny herself, and Growlithe in its shiny form is both yellow and striped)
Pichu (okay, maybe she has overlapping types, but her getting a Pichu in the Apple Corp episode would be cute. Plus, it’s another way she can match with Ash)
Chinchou (she needs a water type, and Chinchou-Lanturn are Pokemon I can see her having)
7/4 c4 Guest
How about having ash and Casey do some tag battles together since we haven't them do that yet and maybe even compete in a tournament where they can both team up together
7/2 c3 Guest
When is Ash going to give Casey the Beedrill he wins in the bug catching contest?
7/1 c1 Ytrio
This is good. Keep it up!
6/30 c3 3goku1234tien
Babe and Ruth? Way to be obvious dude still other then that good job
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