May's Johto Expedition: Catallia City
"Hm, I took a left at the Pokémon Center, and then a right at the flower shop...so is this it?" our favorite brunette murmured to herself, looking up at her surroundings.
In front of her was a green, fairly lavish building, ornamented with a beautiful porch garden with a sign that said, "The Spinarak Salon, for all your beauty needs." True to its name, the garden was adorned with what looked like a Spinarak water fountain, which stood proudly behind the sign.
There was only one thing that was wrong with this beautiful picture.
The windows of the building were covered with planks of wood, and the door had a big fat "CLOSED" sign hanging from it.
May groaned, shutting her copy of Guide to Johto, a sense of disappointment filling her up from head to toe. "Aww man, I came all this way just for a spa treatment at this place. Now what am I supposed to do?"
May was completely bummed out. She had purposely taken a detour to Catallia City, as opposed to going straight to Violet City, just for this spa. It was specially known for leaving you feeling beautiful, happy, and healthy. May had wanted to treat herself before her first Pokémon Contest, but with the way things were turning out...
"Excuse me, I couldn't help but overhear. Are you interested in entering this spa?" a voice said from behind her. May turned to find a kind looking elderly man leaning on his cane. He wore a traditional green and yellow Japanese kimono, accessorized with a...large green spider?
After having a five second stare down with said spider, May turned back to the old man, "Yeah, I am. Do you know what time the spa opens? According to my guidebook, it should be open right now, but the place looks like it's been closed down for good."
The old man sighed, his Spinarak nudging his cheek in consolation. "Unfortunately, with the way things are going, it looks like that's going to be the case."
May looked at the man. "What do you mean?"
"You see, this city is known for its huge population of Spinarak," the man informed, pointing toward his own. "Everyone is very reliant on them, the police force use them to nab burglars, the Pokémon Center uses them to help transport and heal patients...and at one point me, for this beautiful spa. "
"Wait, you're the world renowned owner of the Spinarak Spa?" May exclaimed, flipping back to her guidebook to find the page with the spa on it. "It says here that you've had this spa open for almost 50 years! They consider you the skin guru in the Johto region!"
The old man sighed sadly again, gazing at his spa in dispair. "Yes, that would be me. Or was me at least. Without the Spinarak, I'm nothing."
"What happened to the Spinarak?"
"Do you see this garden here?" the man pointed with his cane. May nodded, her eyes once more grazing the beautiful shrubbery. "It's designed specifically for Spinarak, keeping in mind what kinds of trees and flowers they like. Many wild Spinarak used to traverse through this garden and in return for me giving them a place to stay, they would help me with my spa. But lately, they've stopped showing up. And it's not only the Spinarak that would come here who've disappeared, it's all the wild Spinarak in the city."
"That's so weird," May commented. "Where could they all have gone?"
The man shrugged. "I don't know. But until they come back, the spa can't reopen. I'm sorry," he added, after he caught the look on May's face. "I'm sure you were looking forward to it, but I really can't do anything for you. I think it's best for you to head to the Pokémon Center, get your Pokémon checked, and be on your way. This town isn't anything without the Spinarak."
With that, the old man wobbled away. May took one last look at the garden before turning back to her guidebook to find the Pokémon Center.
I mean, I guess that's all I can do now. I really wonder where those Spinarak went. Maybe they migrated—
But before May could finish her though, she tripped over one of the old String Shot remains left by a Spinarak.
May braced herself for the fall, but that fall never came.
She felt a pair of arms wrap around her waist, effectively stopping her from hitting the ground.
"Ohmygosh, thank you so much," May said, scrambling to her feet. I should've been watching where I was...Drew?"
The familiar smirk caught May's eye as Drew helped her get back on her feet. "Aww, you remembered my name. How sweet."
"Very funny," she said, turning around and dusting imaginary dirt off her knees. "I didn't think I'd see you here."
"You know, just hanging around to catch klutzy girls when they're not watching where they're going."
May felt a red hue grace her cheeks as she crossed her arms together. "Thanks, I guess."
Drew gave her his signature smirk and hair flick. "No problem. How's your training going?"
"My training is going great!" said May, confidently with a smirk of her own. "Watch out Drew, I'm gonna kick your butt in the Violet City Pokémon Contest."
"Except I'm not gonna be in that contest."
"Huh?" May turned to look at him, confused. "Why not?"
Drew pulled out his ribbon case, "I already have two ribbons. I'm taking a break."
May was completely floored. "TWO RIBBONS? But we just got to Johto!"
"You just got to Johto. I didn't waste any time coming here and competing," Drew informed, wagging his finger. "Tsk, tsk. But what did I expect from an amateur?"
"Oh. buzz off you Beedrill," May grumbled, looking at her own empty ribbon case. "I'm going to the Pokémon Center. I'll see you around, Drew." May spun on her heel, looking back at her guidebook to find a Pokémon center when suddenly, a red rose fell into the middle crevice of her book.
"Don't trip now," she heard Drew tauntingly call to her.
"Whatever, grasshead!" she yelled back, sticking her tongue out at him. But the second she turned around, she took a wiff of the rose, smiled to herself and carefully placed the stem part of it in her guidebook.
"Hey Nurse Joy!" May said, walking up to the pink-haired Nurse with her Pokéballs in her hands. "Think you could take care of my Pokémon for me?"
Nurse Joy smiled at her pleasantly. "Absolutely. Although, would you mind waiting a little before I return your Pokémon back to you?" she asked. "Unfortunately, because of the disappearance of the Spinarak, the special stretcher beds strung from their String Shot have run out, and the shipment of regular beds isn't here yet."
"String Shot stretchers?" May inquired, making a mental image in her head as she handed Nurse Joy the Pokéballs.
"Yes! Spinarak's String Shot has special absorption abilities. If it's soaked in the juice of an Oran berry, for instance, the patient will experience all kinds of its restorative properties just from sitting on the bed."
"Wow, that's pretty amazing. Spinarak are really useful," May commented, looking around the Center.
Nurse Joy smiled at her again. "They really are. And the city is in a bit of a pinch since they've all gone missing. It'd be nice of they came back," she said, with a little bit of a laugh. "But we'll manage for now."
"Do you have any idea where they might've gone?" May asked.
"Rumor has it that they've all confined themselves to the forest at the edge of the city," Nurse Joy informed. "I've had my hands full of patients, otherwise I would've gone myself to find out what was happening."
Maybe if I can find out why they left and get them to come back, the Pokémon Center will be back to normal, and I can get my spa treatment!
"In that case, how about I go and find what's happened with the Spinarak?" May suggested.
Nurse Joy beamed at her, stating, "If that's your plan, consider yourself at the front of the line to get your Pokémon checked. Thank you!" Nurse Joy bustled over to the examination room with the Pokéballs, leaving a determined May in her wake.
Spinarak Spa, here we come!
"Ariados, have you come back with more Spinarak?" a menacing, yet feminine, voice questioned.
An Ariados leaped out from the trees, landing gracefully on its eight legs. In its mouth it hung onto a web full of young, helpless Spinarak. The Spinarak inside were biting at the web, in their best attempts to escape. However their attempts were presently futile as they were thrown into a pile of other webs containing Spinarak as well.
"Ahahahaha, how wonderful! Enjoy your new home you little cretins!" the voice yelled, maniacally. The person turned to face another Pokémon. "Banette, use Hypnosis, and follow up with Dream Eater."
The creepy Ghost-type Pokémon levitated over the where the Spinarak had been dumped. It grinned gleefully before releasing sleep inducing waves, causing the Spinarak to nod off. Once the Spinarak had successfully fallen asleep, Banette concentrated its dark energy on the Spinarak, creating a medium for it to absorb their power and terrify them all at once.
"Absolutely beautiful, Banette. A stunning performance. We should use that in our next contest," the voice said once more, his obnoxious laughter rising into the trees. "This should teach the stupid spa and the Spinarak to mess with Harley..."
"Erm, sir, what treatments would you like today?"
Harley flipped through the book of the different treatments they offered. Hair mask? No, his hair was absolutely fabulous. Teeth and nail strengthening? Maybe. He was due for a mani—pedi sometime soon. Face mask?
"Ooh la la! I'd like that one!" Harley exclaimed, pointing to the picture in the book. "Find me your finest Spinarak and your finest masseuse."
"Alright...sir, we'll be charging you up front at the counter. This is your total," the woman informed, showing him the amount on her screen. Harley threw his credit card at her, whacking her right on the cheek, and walked off into the waiting room, his arms outstretched as if he didn't have a care in the world.
"This will be fabulous."
Cut to ten minutes later...
"Sir, your treatment is ready. Please come into the room right across the hall," the woman who had assisted him before called. Harley threw his edition of Pokémon Vogue: Her Collection behind him as he cat walked over to the room. He sat himself down onto the chair before his beautician could even say anything. The beautician looked from Harley to the woman who was at the counter who simply shrugged at her and mouthed "good luck" to her.
"Uh, hi. My name is Tiffany. This is actually my first t—"
"Sweetheart, cut to the chase and just get the treatment done, please. I'm not paying you to talk to me," Harley said, placing his arms behind his head and closing his eyes.
"O-oh. Okay. I'll do that. Um, Sp-Spinarak, come over here," Tiffany called out nervously. The Spinarak entered the room and climbed onto a seat across from Harley. The woman reached out a shaky hand toward her tools.
"HURRY UP!" Harley yelled. Tiffany was so surprised that she accidentally banged her hand on the tray of tools, causing them to go flying. Unfortunately, one of her tools landed on Spinarak, causing it to go berserk.
"Spinarak, no!" Tiffany screamed, but it was too late. Spinarak instinctively began to use Poison Sting and it's aim was Harley.
"WHAT ARE YOU DOING? AHHHHH!" Harley shrieked as he was hit by the painful stings, running out from the room.
"I'm so sorry. I really am," Tiffany said apologetically, bowing over and over again. "It was my first day on the job."
"AUGH! How could you allow a novice to work on my beautiful face? This spa sucks! I'm going to make sure you ALL regret the day that you messed with Harley! GYAAAH!" he shrieked again, running out of the spa, trying to cover the purple blisters that had appeared on his face. "I'll have my revenge!"
"My sweet, sweet revenge," Harley said, smiling to himself. "I've taken every wild Spinarak from that town and brainwashed them. Oh Ariados, it's a matter of time before you have yourself a little Spinarak army," he added cheerfully, looking at his Ariados, who was in the middle of performing Scary Face at the Spinarak.
"We'll take over the city completely. Then they'll be sorry," he muttered to himself, before cackling. He turned to Ariados and Banette. "Why aren't you laughing with me?" The two Pokémon looked at each other before joining in Harley's laughter.
However, what Harley didn't notice was that one of the smaller, baby Spinarak had slipped out of the web and quietly crawled away...
"On the first episode of May's Expeditions, we find ourselves inside of a dark and gloomy forest, on a hunt for a missing hoard of Spinarak. Where could they have gone? Have the city dwellers upset the Bug Pokémon? What will we find out today?" May squinted into the make believe camera she had created with her hands, taking a view of the scenery at hand. She was completely surrounded by trees and shrubbery. Only bits and pieces of the sky could be seen.
"Gee, maybe I should have come here during the day time," May mumbled to herself, as the shadows seemed to be taking over what sunlight was left. The shadows made the trees come alive, but not in a nice way. Everything seemed to have an evil face and suddenly, it was all too quiet.
Something rustled in the bushes. May was now officially spooked. Her heart beat quickened as she felt adrenaline rush through her veins. "Who's there?" she said, reaching for her Pokéballs. She was finally able to calm down when she saw the familiar silhouette of Drew climbing out of the bush, along with his Masquerain who was shining, most likely using Flash.
"Booo. I'm a ghost. Prepare to die."
"Not funny, Drew."
"Hilarious, actually." May pouted, looking at Drew as he picked out leaves out of his otherwise luscious hair. He still managed to look so damn photogenic, even in the dim lighting. He seemed to notice her gaze. Drew flicked his hair, smirking before saying, "Is there a reason I'm being stared at?"
"What were you loitering in the bushes for?"
"I wasn't loitering in the bushes. I was out here searching for you."
"For me?" May asked, tilting her head. "What for?"
"I heard from Nurse Joy about the situation with the Spinarak. She told me you went out straight into the forest. You do realize that forests are completely pitch black after sunset, don't you May? Especially this time of year?"
"Umm," May rubbed her head sheepishly, "might've slipped my mind."
Drew gave her a look as May laughed awkwardly. "You're lucky I decided to look for you. My Masquerain knows Flash."
"Heh, thanks," May said to both him and Masquerain, who did a loop in the air in response. "Gee, Drew. Nice to know my rival cares about me so much," May added, looking at him coyly with an eyebrow raised and a hand on her hip.
Drew turned and replied, "I came because of the Spinarak. And of course as an experienced Trainer, I should help any amateurs I see along the way."
"Your favorite one," he quipped, smirking. "Now let's go find the Spinarak."
"Okay!" May said, putting back on her cheerful demeanor. She moved behind Drew and he turned back to look at her.
And they stared at each other.
For a long time.
"Well, where are the Spinarak?" Drew finally asked, tired of the staring contest.
"Uh…I don't know, I thought you were leading…"
"Spinarak!" they suddenly both heard. A teeny little Spinarak suddenly came down on its thread, hanging right in between May and Drew.
"Hey, you don't think that's one of the Spinarak that left the city, do you?"
Spinarak nodded at May. It then jumped off its string and started scurrying forward into the forest, Masquerain trailing after it. A confused May and Drew followed half sprinting and half dancing, trying not to trip over any roots.
"Try not to trail behind too much, May. I think it's taking us to where the other Spinarak are." May threw Drew a glare but didn't comment any further. As May and Drew got deeper and deeper into the forest, they heard voices. They stopped to listen, to assess what kind of enemy they were dealing with.
"Oh c'mon, Banette. Keep up the hypnosis. It's just a matter of time before we have a Spinarak army!" the duo heard. They exchanged looks, knowing full and well who that nutty voice belonged too.
"Masquerain, return!" Drew whispered, recalling his butterfly Pokémon. He didn't want to give away their location with Masquerain's Flash.
The two moved in a little closer and hid behind a bush.
"It looks like Harley kidnapped all the Spinarak and hypnotized them," whispered May, looking at the bundles of Spinarak stuck inside of the webs. "I guess Ariados has a super strong web, since the Spinarak can't get out of it."
"Except this little guy managed to slip out," Drew said, nodding over to their undersized friend. "I'm trying to figure out how to approach this."
"I've got a plan."
"Does it involve you tripping on the Spinarak?"
"Oh my goodness, it was one time."
Harley laughed to himself as he watched his Ariados use Scary Face on the Spinarak before Banette used hypnotize.
Perfect, he thought to himself. That'll teach them to mess with Harley.
"Give back the Spinarak!" he heard an annoyingly familiar voice yell. "You're in big trouble, Harley."
Harley pasted on the most brightest smile he could, effectively blinding everyone with cheerfulness. "May! You made it to Johto! I'm so excited to see you!"
"Can't say I feel the same," she retorted back. Harley's smile changed to a smirk as he cackled once more.
"You're just in time to meet my new army of Spinarak. I've been using Banette and Ariados to terrify them into doing what I say. The city will be completely covered in webs, from alley to alley."
"Why are you doing this?" May asked, her gaze shifting to where the Spinarak were. Harley leaned back to tell his sob story about his experience at the Spinarak Spa, but May wasn't really focusing on him. From the corner of her eye, she went back to looking at the Spinarak and spotted Drew. Drew had called out his Roselia and they were using Roselia's toxic venom to burn through the webs. So far everything was going as according to her plan.
May tried to pay attention to Harley's rant, but found herself taking more and more glances over to where Drew was. Not so much because she was worried about her plan, but more just to look at Drew.
Bleh, I hate myself for this but he's really pretty to look at.
"..and then I was like OMG, what are you doing? And then...hey, why aren't you paying attention to me?"
May's eyes snapped back to where Harley was as she frantically tried to buy more time for Drew. "Um, I was listening. I was just looking at the Spinarak, wondering how they could be so...evil."
Harley glared at her as she laughed, rubbing the back of her head. "You always irked me, May. I think it's time that I get rid of you once and for all. Banette, Ariados, go!"
May's face turned from sheepish to serious as she reached for her Pokéballs. But before she could do that, the teeny tiny Spinarak who was with her before jumped out of the bushes.
Harley, Banette and Ariados took one look at the mini-Spinarak and started laughing, tears coming out of their eyes. "Ahahahaha, you plan on battling us with that little thing? What's it gonna do? Give me a bug bite?"
The little Spinarak grew increasingly annoyed before it suddenly slashed at Banette with its two front legs. "Oh!" May said, surprised, as Banette promptly fainted.
Harley wasn't laughing anymore.
"X-Scissor? How dare you!" Harley yelled indignantly, looking from the angry little Spinarak to his fainted Banette on the floor to the completely confused May. She looked over at Drew who mouthed, "Just go with it." He seemed to be progressing successfully with his part of the plan, as most of the Spinarak had escaped. May looked back at Harley.
"If it's a battle you want, it's a battle you've got. Let's go Spinarak!"
"Spina! Spinarak!" May pulled out her Pokedex to see what kind of moveset Spinarak had.
"Ariados, poison jab!"
"Spinarak, dodge it using Shadow Sneak." As Ariados leaped in the air with its two front legs growing purple, Spinarak suddenly delved into the shadows.
"Huh?" Harley asked. "Where did it go?"
"Now!" Spinarak came from behind Ariados and hit it right on the back—which was an apparent weak spot, causing it to fall into the ground, the impact creating a mini-crater
"Finish it off with String Shot!" In a matter of seconds, Ariados was covered completely head to toe in the sticky material.
"Ariados, break out of that String Shot," Harley ordered. Ariados constricted it's body, and upon returning back to its normal size, it broke through the attack.
"Ahahahaha. I'll admit that is a strong Spinarak, but I'm obviously going to be the one to win this battle."
It was May's turn to smirk as Drew gave her a thumbs up. "You and what army?"
"My army of Spinarak of cour—hey...WHERE ARE ALL MY SPINARAK?" Harley screamed. He looked over to where the Spinarak were supposed to be and in their place found Drew instead.
"I suggest you concede defeat, Harley. You're outnumbered. My Pokémon, May's Pokémon, and the hundreds of Spinarak you've displaced." Harley took a look around him and gulped, seeing Drew was right. The trees were completely covered with angry Spinarak, all ready to attack.
Harley glared at May. "This is all your fault."
"You bet it is. Now get ready to face defeat, Harley."
"Never. Ariados, use Night Shade and let's get out of this dump," Harley ordered. Ariados's eyes glowed as May's vision went completely black. By the time she could see again, Harley and his Pokémon were gone.
"I'll take that as a white flag," May said, before turning to the little Spinarak. "Spinarak, you were amazing protecting your friends like that. You're so powerful for such a little thing. I'm surprised you haven't evolved into an Ariados yet."
Spinarak cooed, and as if on cue, it suddenly started glowing slowly becoming bigger, and bigger and...
"Uh, May. Doesn't this Ariados look bigger than normal Ariados?" He was right. This Ariados was bulkier and at least a foot longer in size than Harley's was.
May grinned. "Hey, you packed an even bigger punch than we thought. How about taking the honor of leading all the other Spinarak back into the city?"
Ariados and the hoard of Spinarak all cheered.
"You don't know how grateful I am to you for bringing the Spinarak back!" Nurse Joy exclaimed, grabbing May's hands. "Thank you so much!"
"It was no problem at all," May said.
Drew helped too, she thought. I wonder where he went.
"As a thank you gift from the city, I've arranged a day at the Spinarak Spa for you since I know you were so excited to go there."
"Yes!" May cheered. "Thanks so much, Nurse Joy."
"You can head out there now, if you'd like. The owner already knows you're coming."
"I'll do that then," May said, waving to Nurse Joy. "Bye Nurse Joy!"
"Bye! And thanks again." May walked out of the Pokémon Center, completely in high spirits.
Yes! Finally! I'm so excited! Time for super silky hair and soft skin...
May didn't waste anytime getting to the spa. She immediately noticed that the garden was crawling with Spinarak. All the wooden boards covering the windows were down and the sign that had previously said "closed" now said "open."
May stepped into the spa, jingling sound echoing in the room as she opened the door. The old man that she had first seen when she entered the town was behind a counter looking far less glum than before.
He spotted May and yelled excitedly, "You're here!"
"I am," May said, laughing. He wobbled his way from behind the counter over to her, bowing down over and over again.
"My Spinarak and I thank you again and again. Without you, my business would've been completely ruined. Oh, thank you!"
"Really, it's no big deal," May said, blushing out of embarrassment.
"Of course it is a big deal! Please, put on this bathrobe in the changing room and go upstairs in the the spa room. You'll be getting the deluxe treatment from our Spinarak today!"
"Oooh, I can't wait!" May squealed, grabbing onto the pink bathrobe the man had given her. She quickly went into the changing room and changed before going upstairs to the spa room. She was greeted by a green, brightly lit room with a water fountain in the middle. The room had beautiful aloe plants in pots all over the place, along with bamboo. There wasn't much equipment in the room, just a few ointments, some oils, the spa chairs, and...
Drew reading a newspaper?
"Hey, what're you doing here?" May queried, looking over at the green-haired boy.
Drew looked up from his newspaper for about a second to see who had called him and then went right back to reading. "I'm waiting for my spa treatment."
"I thought you'd left already."
"I did say I came here to relax. And now I'm going to do just that."
"At a spa? Didn't know this was your thing."
Drew sighed as he put the paper down and closed his eyes. "There is absolutely nothing wrong with wanting to be treated like luxury. I'm used to it."
May rolled her eyes. "Whatever you say, Princess." She took a seat next to him, pushing the recliner down and closing her eyes. "You know, I never said thank you for last night. You were amazing."
"You need to put that in context, May. People are going to get the wrong idea."
"Shut up and let me finish. I'm really glad you came along to help. I honestly probably wouldn't have gotten far if you and Masquerain hadn't come along," she admitted. "So...thanks."
Drew smirked. "Gratitude where it's due. I'll take it."
"At least take it politely. You could give me a little credit too for coming up with the plan and battling Spinarak and beating Harley and—"
"—You were great, too. Happy? Now hush, I need quiet." May smiled to herself, cheerfully accepting the compliment.
"Hello, I'm Tiffany. I'll be in charge of your treatment," a young, blonde woman said, walking into the room.
"Ah, I'd like the Poison Sting facial along with the Sludge Bomb hair mask."
"Alright, Mr. Drew. We'll arrange that. And would you like anything special, Ms. May?"
"Um, is there something you would recommend, Drew?"
"Try String Shot facials."
"Okay, I'll go with that," May said to Tiffany. Tiffany nodded, scribbling down on her notepad.
"I'll be right back with everything," she said, and both Drew and May nodded. As soon as Tiffany left, Drew let out a laugh.
"What's so funny?" May asked, looking at him suspiciously. Drew reached over to grab a pair of cucumbers to put over his eyes.
"Nothing at all. I hope you enjoy your treatment and get to relax." May eyed him warily, before turning her gaze back to Tiffany who brought with her supplies and a Spinarak.
"Okay then, Spinarak, use String Shot on her face."
"Wait, what?" May asked, extremely surprised. This wasn't what she was expecting.
When Drew said String Shot facial, I thought it was an ointment made of String Shot...Oh boy.
Almost immediately, except for May's eyes and mouth, her face was covered in the sticky web. She looked over at Drew who was smirking in his seat, his eyes still covered with the cucumbers.
"Enjoying yourself, May?"
"It's a shame you can't see what finger I'm holding up right now."
A/N—Hey, hey, hey! Guess who's back? Back again~
Whew, this took FOREVER and a day to write. So I got really lazy with editing and writing descriptions. I was just way too excited to just post something after so long. So if this story is full of nonsensical grammar errors, feel free to point them out in a review. I won't set off any Spinarak on you.
So, I'm trying to start a May's Johto Expedition Series. Each of these stories will be uploaded as a separate fic, so you'll just have to watch out for that. I have more of a description about the series on my profile.
I'm pretty sure I had much more to write in this AN, buuuut since I pulled an all-nighter to write this thing, I'm just gonna upload it and get my butt to bed.
Oh, and I realize just how dirty a String Shot facial sounds. Go take cold showers, you dirty dogs.
Alrighty, I'm out! Please review and tell me what you thought of this story, and if you want more from this series. :) Thank you!