Pokemon: Rise of The Shield

As we normally do, let me address the things that have happened since my last update.

1) Yes, I have heard that Goodra will be leaving Ash. While I am completely against this, it could open a few doors, which brings us to #2

2) I don't know how many of you have heard this, but supposedly, Ash will be getting a Key Stone soon and one would assume that he would get his hands on a Mega Stone not far along after that. Now when Ash does release Goodra, this opens up a door for one of Ash's old Pokemon that can Mega-Evolve to come back.

3) I saw the dubbed episodes of Ash and Serena's 'Date' and Serena's debut. While I do prefer the original versions, I thought the dubbed did a good job on both episodes. Also, Ash said Serena's new outfit was cute! That made Amourshippers like me smile.

Lastly, no one correctly guessed Ash and Brendan's opponents. There were a few that did correctly guessed one of them, but that was it. There were certainly a lot of good guesses though, so kudos to all of you.

Now that we got those out of the way, let's get to the chapter.

I don't own Pokemon or any of it's characters besides my own.

Chapter 7: Round 1 Begins with 2 Old Rivals

"Brendan Birch." Ash replied to Leaf's question. Her, Serena and Conway all thought that it was the professor.

"Wait. Birch as in Prof. Birch?" Serena asked.

"Yeah. At least I assume so." Ash responded. He turned to look at Morrison, since he was a Hoenn native. "Morrison, do you know who this guy is?"

"Yeah and it's not the Professor like you're all thinking. It's his son." Morrison said. The others let out an 'Ah' sound as none of them knew that, but Ash just raised his eyebrow.

"Birch has a son? How is it that I've never heard a thing about him before?" Ash asked. Morrison was about to reply when he stole a look over Ash's shoulder and noticed a certain someone coming their way.

"Well, why don't you turn around and meet him." Morrison said while pointing behind Ash. Ash turned to see a man about 19 years old. He was wearing a orange and gray vest jacket, dark gray shorts, orange fingerless gloves, green and black wristbands and green, orange and gray trainers. What weirded them out was that he seem to have white hair.

"Which one of you is Ash Ketchum?" Brendan asked. Ash stepped forward. "I'm Brendan Birch, it's nice to meet you." Brendan put his arm out, however Ash just continued to look at him with a neutral expression. Serena, thinking that Brendan might be getting a bad impression about Ash, walked up to the two new partners.

"Don't take it personally, Brendan. Ash has trust issues." Serena explained.

"Oh. I understand." Brendan said as he reeled his arm back.

"Actually, that's not really it." Ash said. Brendan looked at him with a suspicious look. "How old are you?" he asked.

"19..." Brendan said.

"Then why do you have white hair?" he asked.

Brendan sighed. "It's not real." He reached for his hair and it came off, revealing that he actually had regular brown hair. "It's just a hat. Arceus, you guys have no idea how many times I have people come up and ask me that same question." Brendan said as he put his hat back on.

"Well Brendan, it's nice to meet you too." Ash said, but he didn't shake hands with him as he didn't completely trust him yet.

"Likewise. Now can we go some place private to talk some strategy for tomorrow?" Brendan asked.

"Sounds good to me." Ash said. He bid his farewells to his friends and gave Serena a quick peck on the lips as the two trainers left the group.

As they were walking, Ash looked at his schedule and looked at the rules. It was a double battle with each trainer only able to use one Pokemon each. He then looked to see his opponents and sighed annoyingly, which Brendan heard.

"What's wrong?" he asked.

"It's our opponents." Ash responded. Brendan just raised his eyebrow.

"What about them?"

"I know them both."

"Why is that so bad?" Ash was about to answer, but then his aura sensed two familiar auras nearby. It was his opponents, making Ash sigh again.

"Wait for it." Ash cryptically said. Brendan wondered what he was talking about when he heard someone singing.

Let's all cheer Electabuzz, the greatest team of all

The players charge the field and double team them all

They're the crew with mega punch

When they are in a crunch

Metronome safe at home

Hyper beam too

Win, win through thick and thin

Electabuzz it's you!

"Yay!" The person who sang it, then she giggled a bit. The young girl didn't realize who had listened in, but the two boys who had heard sweat dropped.

"Now I know what you mean." Brendan said. The girl heard what Brendan had said and turned to face the two. The girl had long purple hair, brown eyes and was wearing a Electabuzz baseball jersey and cap.

"Ash?" The girl asked.

"Yeah Casey, it's me." Ash said. Casey ran up to Ash and gave him a hug.

"It's so great to see you! How long has it been since we last saw each other? Like 10 years?" Casey asked.

"Give or take, yeah. Anyway, it looks like we'll finally have that league match that we didn't get to have last time I saw you."

"Yep! I hope you don't plan on lasting long in this. I don't care if you helped take down Team Rocket, cause my partner and I are going to kick you asses." she said.

"And just where is your partner?" Brendan asked.

"Right here." The two boys turned and the moment Brendan turned to look at the voice, hearts appeared in his eyes. The voice belonged to a young girl about Ash's age. She had long brown hair and light brown eyes. She was wearing a white t-shirt, a blue jean jacket, a long red skirt with a pink belt wrapped around her waist and white sneakers. Standing next to her was a Marowak.

"Wow! That is one gorgeous woman." Brendan said, making the girl in front of him smirk.

'Eh. Serena's much more prettier.' Ash thought to himself as the girl approached the two.

"Well, well, well. If it isn't Ash Ketchum." the girl said.

"Hello, Giselle." Ash greeted the brunette in front of him.

"Hang on, you know this beauty?!" Brandon asked.

"Yeah. I met her when I started my journey as I came across the school she was going to. She embarrassed one of my former friends, but I beat her Marowak when it was a Cubone with Pikachu here." Ash said, pointing to the electric mouse on his shoulder.

"It's thanks to Ash that I was able to grow not only as a trainer, but as a person. But Ash, just because you beat me back there doesn't mean you'll beat me here. Marowak wants redemption for what happened at Poke-Tech and he's much stronger than he was back then." Giselle said.

"I don't doubt that you've gotten stronger, but if you underestimate me again, I will make you pay for it." Ash said, making Giselle smirk.

"Well then, tomorrow looks to be very interesting. Casey, let's leave these two boys alone now. See you tomorrow Ash." Giselle said as she and Casey started to walk away, but Brendan stopped them from going too far.

"Hi there; my name's Brendan. Would you go on a date with me?" he asked Giselle.

"Sorry, but I already have a boyfriend." Giselle said, leaving Brendan with a shocked expression and broken hearted eyes.

"Let me guess...is it Joe?" Ash asked. Giselle nodded.

"He'd be here too, but the thing is that he and I both work at Poke-Tech as teachers and they would only send one of us and he insisted that I'd go. He can't even be here to support me." Giselle explained.

"Well, you'll see him soon." Ash said. Giselle rolled her eyes, shook her head and she and Casey walked away. As they walked away, Brendan managed to recover from his rejection.

"I had a feeling she was taken, but a guy has to try, right?" he asked. Ash just shrugged his shoulders.

'This guy kinda reminds me of Brock, but nowhere as perverted.' Ash thought to himself. Ash and Brendan walked over to a nearby bench and were about to talk strategy when someone called out for Ash. They turned to see a blonde walking towards them with a Meowth on her shoulder. Ash recognized the blonde as Domino.

"Hey Dom." Ash greeted.

"Hey Ash. I guess you must be his partner for Round 1?" Domino said to Brendan.

"That's right. I'm Brendan. Nice to meet you." Brendan said.

"Likewise." Domino turned to Ash. "Meowth wants to know if you planning on using him for Round 1."

"Sorry Meowth, but I think I want to use Pikachu. Reason being is that one of my opponents is someone I faced when I first started my journey and her Pokemon wants a second chance at him."

"That's all right Boss. I understand." Meowth said. He then jumped from Domino's shoulder to Ash's right shoulder. The two Shield members and Pokemon momentarily ignored Brendan's shocked reaction at seeing a talking Pokemon. Ash and Domino gave each other a hug and Domino whispered something into Ash's ear.

"Meeting tonight at 8."

"Alright." He whispered back as the two separated.

"See you two later...especially you." she said, directing the last part at Brendan as she gave him a wink, making Brendan blush. Domino walked away, intentionally swaying her hips, which made Brendan blush increase to the max. He also started to drool.

'OK, maybe he's a little like Brock.' Ash thought. He snapped his fingers in front of Brendan's face, but it didn't snap him out of his trance.

"BRENDAN, WAKE UP!" he yelled. Said trainer came out of his trance and jumped up.

"For fuck's sake Ash! What was that about?!"

"You were drooling." he simply said.

"Oh...sorry." Brendan blushed, this time in embarrassment. "C-can we go prepare for tomorrow now?" he asked, stuttering a bit.

"Sure. Let's find a field to practice on." Ash said as the two walked away.

Ash and Brendan trained for about 5 hours and talked strategy. Ash informed Brendan of what Pokemon the two girls had that he was aware of and they planned their strategy around that. Both guys were certain that Giselle would be using Marowak as she practically admitted it earlier. Predicting which Pokemon Casey would use was much tricker; however, Ash was certain that she would use either Meganium or the Elekid she caught when he last saw her, which was certain to be an Electivire. Brendan said it didn't matter as he had a Pokemon that could beat either one of them. They moved onto battling and had many mock battles, which were essentially Pikachu and Meowth beating down on Brendan's poor Pokemon to see how much damage they could take. Much to Ash's surprise, Brendan's Pokemon were very tough enough to get up from almost all of Pikachu's and Meowth's attacks. During the training, Ash realized that Brendan was similar to him in some aspects, but completely different in others. The biggest difference was that Brendan had at least one Pokemon of every type that was known. The biggest thing that surprised him was that the amount of training Brendan had put into his top team; Ash was convinced that his team could given any member of the Chosen Six's team a run for their money.

Eventually, Ash let Brendan go heal his Pokemon for tomorrow while he went to P.L.A HQ for whatever the meeting was about. When we walked into the conference room, he noticed that everyone was there except Cynthia and Mike. The two entered as soon as Ash sat down.

"OK, guys. Why are we here?" Ash asked. Cynthia turned to Mike.

"You want to tell them or should I?" she asked.

"Go ahead Cyn; it's your discovery." Mike said.

"Discovery? What might that be?" Lance asked.

"Well...I did a search of all the top level members of the criminal originations that we have in custody to make sure no one slipped away from us and well... my search revealed no one was missing. I did fingerprints, dental records and DNA and they all matched the people that were supposed to be there." she explained.

"You're sure the bosses, executives, grunts and known associates we have in our prisons are the who we think they are?" Alder asked.

"Yes Alder. I double checked everything." Cynthia said.

"The point is that what Sabrina said in our last meeting was incorrect." Mike said. The group expected Sabrina to be furious at Mike for saying she was wrong about something, but she just remained sitting down in her seat with her usual neutral expression.

"I never said that the leader was apart of any of the criminal teams; I said that the person responsible had some sort of connection to one or perhaps more of them." she said.

"Did you not hear her Sabrina? Cynthia just said that we have all associates of those teams in our prisons, so how do you explain that?" Paul asked.

"What about a family member?" Clair suggested.

"I already did that research a few years ago." Lance answered. "None of the bosses have any known off-spring. There are a few of the executives that have kids, but none of them have any criminal record and yes, I recently checked it again and none of them still have a record, so I doubt that any of them are responsisble."

"So then it's probably some grunt, right?" Scott suggested.

"Perhaps, but I'm not sold on that idea and neither is Mike." Cynthia said with Mike nodding his head in agreement.

"Right and besides, if a grunt is really that smart to set this whole thing up, then don't you think they would've been promoted to an executive?" Mike asked. The group thought about what he said for a moment before someone spoke.

"By the way you're talking, it sounds like you're only referring to Team Rocket." Lt. Surge said, with Mike shrugging his shoulders. "Sabrina never gave us a definitive team that their leader is associated with, so how do you know if this person is associated with Team Rocket or not?" Surge asked. The group waited for Mike to answer, but instead of him answering, it was Ash.

"Hang on, Surge. I think Mike might be onto something. I mean, think about it: The N.W.O is a group that wants to take over the world; that I think we can all agree on." Ash said, with just about everyone agreeing with what he said. "So what other criminal organization wanted to take over the world more than Team Rocket?"

"I think I get what you're saying." Steven said. "Teams Aqua and Magma wanted to expand the amount of water and landmass respectively and destroy Hoenn."

"And then there's Team Galactic, who wanted to destroy Sinnoh in place of it's own world." Flint said.

"Well, Team Plasma wasn't really about destroying Unova, but had they succeeded in gaining control of Reshiram, I can say with certainty that they would've used the Pokemon to destroy the region." Alder said, with his Elites as well as Elesa, Skyla and Roxie all nodding their heads in agreement.

"And let's not forget about Team Flare." Diantha reminded, which made a few shudder from the group. None of them had forgotten all the things Team Flare had done to try and accomplish their goals.

"Right and the one thing all those teams had in common is that their goal or plan revolved around destroying their respective regions; if not the entire world. Now has Team Rocket ever wanted to try and destroy the world?" Ash asked.

"Not that I can recall...but where are you getting at with this?" Lance asked back.

Ash leaned back a bit in his chair before answering. "What I'm saying is that whoever the leader is must've spent years, perhaps even decades secretly spying on Team Rocket without them knowing it and perhaps that's how they learned about Orre." What Ash said left many thinking faces on almost everyone in the group. Soon, Ash spoke again. "Or maybe it's just somebody who lived in Orre and wants revenge at the PLA for distancing themselves from that region. I don't know; maybe I'm reaching, but given what we just learned from Cynthia and Mike and with what Sabrina said, that's the only explanation that makes sense to me." he concluded.

The group remained silent for a while; letting what Ash had suggested sink in. Eventually, Goodshow stood up from his chair. "That's certainly an interesting theory, Ash. However, I suggest we call it a night and discuss this later. After all, I don't want any of you to miss any sleep with the 1st round of the KCO tomorrow. I wish you all the best of luck tomorrow and I'll see you all then." Goodshow said as he left the room. The remainder of The Shield also left. As they were leaving and started boarding the elevator, Ash noticed something: along with his Chosen Six team-mates, they was also the New Six, Brandon, Anabel, Noland, Lance and Cynthia. Now that Ash thought about it, he realized that this was one big ass elevator to fit this many people inside it. Anyway, he thought that now would be as good of a time as any to inform the New Six about their closely guarded secret.

"Hey guys." Ash said. Everyone turned to him. "Perhaps now is a good tell to tell the newest members of our organization about our you-know-what." he said.

Lance thought about it for a moment before he responded. "Yes I agree. Does anyone object?" he asked. No one shook their heads, indicating to the Kanto/Johto Champion that no one had a problem with it. "Alright. We'll head to the forrest clearing outside the Plateau."

The second Lance finished speaking, the elevator dinged and opened it doors. Lance lead everyone to the clearing. It was about a 20 minutes walk from PLA HQ, which some of the New Six complained about, but Ash promised them that the walk would be worth while. After several minutes of walking, they finally arrived to the clearing. It was a beautiful sight to say the least, with a spring and trees surrounding the entire area. Ash took a few steps forward and turned to look at everyone.

"Leaf, Bonnie, Zoey, Harrison, Tyson and Tobias, this is our personal training area. We all use it whenever we're assigned to be at Indigo. Now that you're apart of The Shield, we encourage you to use this for training as well." Ash said. Most of the New Six looked a little disappointed that this was the secret, so Ash decided to clear that misunderstanding. "And by the way, this wasn't the secret we were talking about." That got all of their interests to peak. Ash reached inside his shirt and revealed two necklaces, each with a Pokeball at the end of them. When Ash enlarged them, the New Six noticed they looked different than any other Pokeball any of them had ever seen. The top of one was completely purple while the other's top was black with blue lighting marks. "The Pokemon that reside in these two Pokeballs are not regular Pokemon...but rather, they're legendary Pokemon." he said, earning either shocked or surprised looks from all the members of the New Six. "You see, each of us has at least one legendary in our teams and while we only use them in battle if we have to, I figured it's probably best to let you guys know now."

"At least 1?" Harrison asked.

"Yes. As you can see, I have 2. Now then, here's the 1st." Ash said as he threw the purple topped Pokeball, releasing the legendary genetic Pokemon, Mewtwo, making 5 of the New Six take a step back in fear, while Tobias stood his ground. "I introduce you to Mewtwo."

'Ash, who are these six in front of me?' Mewtwo asked.

"These are the newest members of The Shield." Ash answered. Mewtwo nodded his head and floated to look at each member of the New Six eye to eye to make sure that there wasn't any shade of evil or deception in them and there was none. However, when Mewtwo reached Tobias, he felt a presence that he would normally feel whenever he was around a fellow legendary Pokemon.

'You posses Legendary Pokemon too, correct?' he asked Tobias.

"Yes. How did you know?" Tobias asked, thinking that perhaps Mewtwo had read his mind.

'No, I didn't read your mind.' Mewtwo said, making Tobias slightly flinch at the psychic type speaking what he was thinking. 'Whenever a trainer carries a Pokeball that has a legendary Pokemon inside of it, they give off a unique presence that only other fellow legendaries, like myself can feel and I can feel 3 different legendaries on your person.'

"I see. Well in any case, you are correct. I am the trainer of 3 legendaries." Tobias proudly stated.

"And here I thought his entire team consisted of frigging legendaries." Mike mumbled aloud. One of his Pokeballs opened, revealing his Lucario, who promptly hit him upside his head. "OW! What the fuck was that for?" Lucario just started at her trainer. "Alright fine, I know what it was for, but did you really have to do it in front of people?!" he screamed. Lucario just huffed, folded her arms and looked away from him. Most of the group covered their mouths to avoid laughing.

"Anyway, if it's alright with you Ash, I'd like to go next." Tobias asked the raven haired trainer.

"Well, let me show you my other legendary and then you can go." Ash was about to throw the ball into the air, but had a quick thought. "Can everyone take a step or two back first?" he asked everyone, who complied. Ash threw the Pokeball up into the air and what came out of it completely shocked the New Six.

"Is...Is...T...Th.." Harrison tried to speak, but the words couldn't come out of his mouth correctly.

"To answer your question Harrison: Yes. Ladies and Gentlemen, I present to you the Pokemon of Ideals, Zekrom!" Ash presented, leaving each of the Six in front of him with their jaws dropped.

"Ar-Are we sure that we're far enough away that no one will see this?" Tyson asked.

"We about a twenty minute walk outside of the Plateau, so none of the other participants are able to see us, not to mention that Mt. Silver is about 10 minutes west of the Plateau, so if anyone does hear any loud roars, they'll just assume it's just some wild Pokemon whom lives on the Mt." Cynthia answered. "Now then Tobias, will you please reveal all of your Legendaries to the group?" she asked.

"Um...Yes, of course." Tobias answered, though he slightly hesitated in answering after seeing Ash was in possession of Zekrom. He threw out 3 Pokeballs revealing his Darkrai, Latios which they all knew about, but his 3rd Legendary surprised most of them. The Pokemon that came out of his 3rd Pokeball was the Volcano Pokemon, Entei who roared to announce his presence. Once his roar was finished, one of Paul's and Anabel's Pokeballs and out came Suicune and Raikou respectively, to the surprise of the New Six.

"Hold on a minute; you guys actually captured the legendary beasts of Johto?" Leaf asked.

"In a way, I suppose." Paul answered, not wanting to reveal how he actually got Suicune to the newbies...yet.

"Well, I befriended Raikou. Several years ago, I found him outside my home up near Tohjo Falls. He was in really bad shape because he had just escaped some poachers that attacked him, so I took him in, nursed him back to health and eventually, he decided to stay with me." Anabel explained.

"So how did you capture your legendaries, Tobias?" Tyson asked.

"Ah, each one is a very long story and I don't want to keep you guys here too long since we have a big day tomorrow. I'll tell you those stories another time." Tobias said, earning annoyed groans out of almost everyone.

"We will hold you to that Tobias." Ash told him. "Now who's wants to go next?"

"I'll go." Mike said as he tossed out Dee's Pokeball and she came out stretching. She yawned before looking at her trainer.

"Hey, what's the big idea? I was having a nice dream!" Dee yelled. Before Mike could answer though...

"WHAT THE FUCK?!" Leaf and Zoey screamed. The other four had stunned looks on their faces; even Tobias had one. "HOW IN THE LOVE OF FUCK DID YOU GET A HUMAN INSIDE OF A POKEBALL?!" The two ladies screamed again.

Mike turned towards the 'Human'. "You mind, Dee?" he asked. Dee quickly caught on to what was going on and nodded her head. She was soon surrounded in a ball of light and a few moments later, she was now in her regular Pokemon form. Mike turned to see each newbie with their eyes widen as high as they could go and their jaws all the way down to the ground. "New Six, I present to you my Legendary, Deoxys...or Dee as she like to be called." Mike said. As soon as he was finish with the introduction, Dee switched back to her human form.

"How can she do that?" Harrison asked.

"Yeah. I mean, I knew about Deoxys, but you guys never told me about how she can transform like that." Bonnie said. Mike was a little hesitant in answering since The Chosen Six all decided not to tell anyone about how they got their Legendaries and Dee noticing this, answered for him.

"Oh, it's just a very special ability that only a few Deoxys like me have. It's kind of like how some Pokemon are shiny." she answered. She looked over to her trainer and saw him mouth a "Thank you" to her, which she returned with a wink.

One by one, the rest of the Shield revealed their Legendaries to the New Six. Serena showed her Manaphy, Dawn showed her Shaymin, Ritchie showed his Celebi, Noland showed his Articuno, Brandon showed his Regi trio, Cynthia revealed her Latias, who like Dee, could change into a human, but she couldn't speak like one, instead speaking with telepathy and last, but not least, Lance revealed his Lugia. To say the New Six were stunned at how many Legendaries the Shield had would be a massive understatement.

"Wow...I can't believe you guys have so many Legendaries on your side." Zoey commented.

"I didn't even know about half of these." Bonnie said to herself.

"Well, now you know and all that we ask is that you don't tell anyone anything of what you saw here tonight." Lance ordered the New Six, which they all agreed to do.

"I have a question." Leaf spoke. "Will you guys be using your Legendaries during the KCO?" she asked.

"Should we have to, then yes." Ash answered for the others, making Leaf, Zoey, Bonnie, Harrison and Tyson hoping they wouldn't have to face off against any of these guys and girls in front of them anytime soon, though Tobias was confident since he was the only one of the New Six to posses a Legendary.

"Well, we shouldn't have to until the later rounds, if that makes you feel better." Cynthia said. "All that we ask from you is that you don't tell anyone about what you say here; we will reveal our legendaries when the time is right." The New Six all nodded their heads in agreement.

"Well, I suggest that we all head back to our hotels and get some sleep. We all have a big day tomorrow." Brandon suggested.

"Sounds good to me." Ash said.

"Yep, besides; I owe this one a little something for his battle earlier." Serena said with a devious smile on her face, making Ash blush a bit. The group rolled their eyes and started walking back to Indigo, that is until Cynthia noticed that Mike was still standing there.

"You coming, Red?" she asked.

"Actually, I think I'm going to stay here and meditate for a while. Go ahead and leave; I'll be in soon." he said. Cynthia and the others accepted his answer and continued walking. Mike returned Dee and Lucario to their Pokeballs, stating that he wanted to meditate alone. After returning the two, he made sure that the group was far enough away. Once he was sure they were gone, he pulled out his Holo Caster and called a certain someone that his group ran into earlier in the day. After a few rings, someone picked up.

"Hello?" The voice on the other line said. The image on the Holo Caster was a little blurry at first, but it quickly straighten itself out to reveal Hilda.

"Hey H. It's me. Do you have anything new?" he asked.

Unbeknown to the red eyed trainer, someone was currently watching him from a distance and recording what he was doing. This said person was originally only supposed to keep an eye on the New Six, if only to make sure they weren't up to something and said person was almost about to leave when he/she(A/N I'm not revealing who this for now. HA-HA!) turned around to see Mike calling someone. Now normally, this wouldn't seem all that suspicious, but calling someone when you're saying you're going to meditate and check to make sure your group is out of the area would certainly raise red flags in anyone's mind. He/She was too far away to be able to hear Mike and didn't want to risk getting caught by moving up to hear him better, but said person was hoping that when the footage was reviewed that he/she would be able to see who it was Mike was talking to.

"And that's all I have, at the moment." Hilda said, finishing her report.

"That's not a whole lot for me to go on" Mike commented.

"You know, you could always get your friends..."

"I know I could, but I don't want to involve any of them into this unless I have something concrete, otherwise I'm just making an accusation without any sort of evidence to back it up and none of them will even bother with that." Mike said. "Are you sure their isn't anything else?"

"Well...there is one other thing..."

"Yeah?" Mike asked, waiting for an answer while also wondering why she kept this out of her report.

"...I didn't want to tell you until I was completely certain but...I don't think it's Calem in that video." Hilda said.

"What makes you think that?"

"For one thing, he was watching it with us as it played."

"Could've been taped...and given to someone else to play it on all the networks." Mike said, starting to put the pieces together, though a little slowly.

"Or maybe someone hacked the networks, but either way, I'm like 80% certain that whoever was in that video was not Calem and the reason is that I could barely see the outline of the person's hair and it sure didn't look like Calem's."

"He might have been wearing a wig?" he suggested.

"Perhaps, but I'm not so sure on that."

Mike sighed. "Alright, I'll see what I can't dig up on Calem. Maybe if I look hard enough, I'll be able to find some sort of motive as to why he would be apart of this." he said. "Good night, Hilda and good luck tomorrow."

"Good night, Boss and good luck to you too." Hilda said as she hung up. Mike put his Holo Caster into one of his vest pockets and started walking back to Indigo, deciding to head to one of their diners to get a late dinner. The person that was recording him also left moments later, though made sure to stay several feet away from him to avoid suspicions.

The following morning in the main stadium, Ash and Brendan were in one of the tunnels leading to the battlefield, waiting for the announcer to introduce them to the crowd. Mr. Goodshow had decided that Ash's battle would open the tournament, which was a huge honor to Ash; after all, he could've just chosen one of the champion's battles to open while he battled in one of the four side stadiums later, but then again, he hadn't been in a league since the betrayal and at least according to Goodshow, he was a very popular trainer, so that was probably why he was opening. While Brendan stretched, Ash was meditating with Pikachu and Meowth sitting right beside him and his Lucario sitting opposite him. When Brendan finished his stretching, he looked over and saw that Ash had just opened his eyes and stood up. Pikachu and Meowth took their places on Ash's shoulders and Lucario returned to his ball. Ash looked over to Brendan.

"You ready?" he asked.

"Yep...Hey, are you ever gonna tell me how your Meowth can talk human talk?" Brendan asked. Ash looked at Meowth.

"It's his story to tell, not mine. If he wants to tell you, he will." Ash answered. It wasn't the answer that Brendan wanted, but he accepted it anyway. The two then heard the announcer.

"Ladies and Gentlemen, welcome to the 1st match of the Kanto Championship Open! Introducing first, coming out of the red tunnel: from Celadon City, Kanto: Giselle Seiyo!" The crowd cheered as the Poke-Tech graduate and teacher came out of the tunnel, waved at the crowd and entered the red trainer box. "And her partner, from New Bark Town: Casey Nanako!" The crowd cheered once again as the Electabuzz baseball fan came out and joined Giselle in their trainer box.

Ash looked over to Brendan. "Let's do this." Brendan nodded his head. They both heard the announcer speak again.

"And their opponents! First, from Littleroot Town, Hoenn: Brendan Birch!" Brendan walked out of their tunnel and the crowd gave the son of Hoenn's professor a big cheer. The announcer waited a few moments before announcing Ash, letting the anticipation build and build. Finally, he made the introduction everyone was waiting for. "And his partner, from Pallet Town, Kanto!" That on it's own got a huge roar of cheers. "He is known as the 'Pride of Pallet': Ash Ketchum!" Ash came out of the tunnel and received a standing ovation that was so loud, the citizens of Unova could've heard it.

Up in the skybox, Mr. Goodshow couldn't help but smile at the huge ovation Ash was getting. 'The prodigal son has returned.' he though to himself.

Meanwhile with the traitors, they couldn't believe the reaction Ash was getting.

"What the hell is wrong with everyone?" Gary asked.

"I know; doesn't anyone here realize that Ash is a horrible trainer?" Misty said.

"In your opinion only, apparently." Hilbert said, with Hilda nodding her head in agreement. Calem wasn't paying attention to what they would talking about as he was just staring at the field, waiting for the battle to start.

"IT'S FACT!" Max yelled, earning a few glares from some nearby watchers, not that he cared what they thought. "Just watch; Ash won't make it past this round."

"Max's right. Ash is a weakling. Just see for yourself." Trip said. Hilbert just shrugged his shoulders and went back to watching the field as the referee stepped forward.

"This is a 1st round double battle between Ash Ketchum and Brendan Birch vs Giselle Sieyo and Casey Nanako. Each trainer may select 1 Pokemon for this match and moves such as Baton Pass and U-Turn are illegal. Once both of one sides Pokemon are ruled unable to battle, I will declare a winner. Trainers, select your Pokemon!" The ref said. 3 of the 4 reached for their belts while the last just looked to his left shoulder.

"Pikachu, I choose you!" Pikachu jumped off Ash's shoulder and took his place on the battlefield.

"Swampert, end this!" Brendan released the mud fish Pokemon and he took his place next to Pikachu

"Marowak, go!" Giselle said as she released her Pokemon.

"And stepping up to the plate, Electivire!" Casey said as her electric type came out and took it's place next to Marowak.

Ash looked over to Brendan. "Told you." he said, making Brendan roll his eyes. "Remember the plan." This time, Brendan nodded his head.

"Pikachu and Swampert vs Marowak and Electivire...Begin!" The ref dropped both his flags, signaling to the trainers to begin.

Ash wondered what kind of abilities Marowak had since they're was a chance his ability was lighting rod. Ash decided that a little test was in order. "Pikachu, run up to Marowak with Agility and then surround him with Thunder Wave!" Ash instructed. Pikachu did so and quickly ran up to him and started releasing blue lighting waves. Ash knew Pikachu's electric attacks were useless in that battle, but he thought that maybe Thunder Wave might work.

"Marowak, use you ability!" Giselle said. Marowak raised his bone to the sky and all the lighting waves went to the top of the bone and disappeared. "HA! Did you really think that would work, Ash?" she mocked.

"No, but I just wanted to see what your Marowak's ability was and now that I know, Pikachu use Hidden Power!" Pikachu was instantly surrounded by several green orbs. They soon fired at Marowak and while he tried to take down some of them with his bone, many of them still connected as Marowak went down to his paws and knees, obviously in pain. Giselle wondered what was wrong when Ash answered for her. "Oh and did I mention that was Hidden Power Grass?" he said with a smug look on his face.

Giselle growled. Not only had her strongest Pokemon taken a lot of damage at the hands of an electric type, but said electric type had a game changing move that if he used again, would end her chances of becoming Kanto Champion, not to mention she had no idea what other moves Ash had taught Pikachu since she last saw the 2 about 10 years ago. She looked over to her partner and saw that her Electivire and Brendan's Swampert were in a tough battle, so she wasn't getting any assistance from her. The only good thing in this situation was that she still had type advantage. "Marowak, use Bonemerang!" As soon as she finished giving her command, Marowak threw his bone right at the electric mouse.

Ash smirked. "Pikachu, break that bone in half with Iron Tail!" Pikachu's tail glowed metallic gray and as the bone was coming at him, Pikachu jumped into the air and came down with perfect timing as the attack hit the bone and broke it in half.

Marowak was incredibly nervous now that his weapon was gone and Giselle was left with 2 thoughts. 1: How strong was this Pikachu? And 2: Why on earth did she pretty much ask Ash to use Pikachu in this battle? The match might have been a little bit easier had she not said that Marowak wanted redemption for what happened back at Poke-Tech.

"Marowak, use Dig!" Marowak started digging as fast as he possibly could and all the while, gaining the element of surprise on his side.

Ash just smirked. He turned to Brendan. "It's time." Brendan turned to him and nodded. He looked back at the battlefield and saw his Swampert and Casey's Electivire were starting to breath heavy, but his Pokemon still had a few good attacks left. "Pikachu, hop onto Swampert!" The electric mouse did so.

"Swampert, flood the field with Surf!" Swampert created a huge wave of water and sent it right at their opponents.

Casey, not realizing what they were doing, simply focused on saving Electivire. "Use Protect!" Casey ordered. Electivire crosses his arms and a green barrier appeared around its body, protecting him for the surf attack. However, as the surf finished washing over the field, Casey realized that she had forgotten her partner and looked over at the hole Marowak had dug. A groan was heard and then Marowak crawled out of the hole and soon collapsed; swirls in his eyes.

"Marowak is unable to battle!" The ref declared with one of his flags raised. Giselle returned Marowak while Casey looked down; she now realized that she should have ordered Electivire to go over to the hole and then use protect. Now she was one her own facing both Ash and Brendan, which made her gulp.

"Electivire, use Hyper Beam on Pikachu!" Electivire fired a powerful orange beam for his mouth.

Ash could see the fear in her eyes and decided to end her misery. "Let end this!" Ash said to Brendan, who nodded in response.

"Swampert, get in front of Pikachu and use your Protect!" Swampert did as he was told and formed an green ball, which deflected the hyper beam.

"Now Pikachu..." Ash started

"And Swampert..." Brendan continued.

"Use Hyper Iron Volt!" They both commanded. Pikachu's tail quickly turned metallic grey and soon after that, Swampert fired a Hyper Beam attack. Then, to the crowd's surprise, Pikachu started using Volt Tackle and ran into the Hyper Beam, which combined with Pikachu's Volt Tackle and Iron Tail attacks and the right as the attack reached Electivire, Pikachu turned to have his tail facing Electivire. The attack hit and created a huge puff on dirt that covered the entire battlefield. Ash, Brendan, Giselle and Casey covered their eyes, waiting for the result and when the dust cleared, it revealed Pikachu standing on top of a unconscious Electivire.

The ref raised his flag once again. "Both Electivire and Marowak are unable to battle. Pikachu and Swampert win! The match goes to Ash Ketchum and Brendan Birch!" The crowd roared in cheers as Ash and Brendan cheered and gave each other a high-5. Brendan returned Swampert while Pikachu ran up to Ash, who gave him a hug and told him he did an awesome job. Pikachu took his place back on Ash's shoulder and rubbed cheeks with the raven haired trainer. The two boys walked to the middle of the battlefield as did Giselle and Casey. The four trainers shook hands with each other as the audience applauded at the sportsmanship between the four. The two teams turned and walked back to their respective tunnels with Ash and Brendan giving the audience one last wave to them before they entered the tunnel. One round was down, but there were still many more rounds and many more tough battles still to come.

End of Chapter 7

So that was Chapter 7. Leave a review and let me know what you guys thought of it.

The next update of this story will be sometime in late June, but both SCR and AKRTE will both be updated at least once in the month of May.

So until next time, this is nWore signing out.