One for the Money

POKEMON - Moves Ordered

Pokemon - Moves in text

Telepathy - Pokemon hidden ability telepathy

Birth of a Bounty Hunter

I had been divorced for a couple of years before I lost my job. The company was shut down by the feds so it wasn't my fault but it still made it difficult to find permanent work. I'm too overqualified for entry-level positions but anyone associated with my old company is treated like a bad smell so I've been doing temp work for various agencies for the last six months and I was getting perilously close to having to raid the emergency fund. I sold most of my furniture to pay rent and defaulted on my car payments. I was desperate. Desperate enough to ask my cousin Vinnie for a job. Which considering Vinnie has a striking similarity to his Linoone and the fact that he is my cousin doesn't stop him from ogling my assets, is pretty desperate.

It was over Sunday roast at my parents house, that I learnt from my father that Vinnie was looking for someone to help with the filing, so here I was at 9oclock on Monday morning in a neat suit in the blistering heat trying to convince myself I was indeed desperate enough to enter Vinnie's storefront. Plums Bail Bonds. I sighed, the sooner I got this over with the sooner I could go back to my cool apartment. I entered the building to find his secretary looking through files. The office was plain with an old couch along one wall and a door behind the secretaries desk that I assume led to Vinnie's office, a Skitty was curled up on top of the filing cabinet. She looked up. "Well, well, if it isn't Stephanie Plum," It was Connie Rosolli, she was two years above me in school, I was in the same class as her sister Tina.

Connie was Italian with big hair, a big ass, big chest with a tiny waist and hair on her upper lip. She kind of looked like Betty Boop with a moustache. I was taller, paler and smaller everywhere else. The only thing big on me was my wild curly hair.

"You aren't here to make bail are you?" she asked worriedly.

"No, I need a job and my father told me Vinnie was hiring a file clerk," I replied.

"Oh honey, we filled that position already and it was only for a couple of days anyway. If you are really in need of a job though you could try being a fugitive apprehension agent," she suggested.

"What's that and does it pay well?" I asked.

"Bounty hunter and you get 10% of the bond," she explained, "For example, this file came in last week, the bond was $100,000 so the bounty hunter that brings him into the police station gets $10,000."

$10,000. I could pay off all my bills and get a second-hand car with that money. "What are the rules? Do they have to agree or can I just get a psychic type to levitate him into the station?" I asked eagerly.

"They are FTA (Failure to appear) so no they don't have to agree but it's best to paralyze them or make them sleep and cuff them first so they can't try to escape. Any Pokemon moves used on them have to have a report written about them though so you can prove your Pokemon wasn't attacking people willy nilly."

"I can do this, how do I find them?" I was eager. I would never sell my personal Pokemon but I had been so afraid I would need to use my emergency fund.

"Some really just forgot to go to court, you will likely find them at home, some are stupid, you will also find them at home or with relatives. Some are smart and are harder to find. Once you find them, zap them, cuff them and get them in your car. If you think you will have trouble getting them from the car into the station, call reception and they will send a couple of uniforms out to you. And for god's sake separate them from their Pokeballs." She explained. "Unfortunately while I can write cheques, I can't hire you, you will need to convince Vinnie."

"No problem, is he in?"

She nodded and yelled at the door behind her "Vinnie, you have business out here!"

It was short work to blackmail Vinnie into giving me the $10,000 bond case and a couple of smaller ones. But he only gave me a week for the $10,000 one or he would give it to someone more experienced. It used to belong to another bounty hunter called Morty Beyers but he ended up in the hospital with appendicitis. I looked inside to see why he was worried I couldn't handle it and saw a picture of Vice cop Joe Morelli. A week ago it had been all over the newspapers that he had shot an unarmed man. I guess he was afraid of what happened to cops in prison and skipped bail.

When I was 6 I went with Joe Morelli, against my mother's explicit instructions I might add, into his father's garage where he crawled under my skirt. Ten years later at the age of 16, he walked into the Tasty Pastry where I worked to buy a cannoli and talked me out of my pants behind the counter after I closed the shop. The Morelli boys ran wild as children and became the hot, mysterious bad boys as teens. After the deflowering he never called, never wrote to me but he did write some lewd poetry about me in the sub shop bathroom, so when he was back from the navy three years later I may have accidentally on purpose hit him with my dad's car breaking his leg.

My expression must have changed because Connie asked me if I knew him. "I sold him a cannoli once," I said shortly.

New Car/ Hit and Miss

I traded the last of my appliances for a small rust bucket of a car with a major oil leak and no air conditioner. The only reason I didn't just ride Big Blue everywhere was it got too hot. I let Teeni my Dratini out of her ball. ICY WIND I told her. This summer has been so hot I worried the rain that has been forecasted over the next two weeks would only make it worse. The icy wind had dropped the inside of the car into refrigerator levels and I sighed in relaxation. Pulling out the files that Connie I read the names, addresses and looked at the mugshots. I had a drunk, a nudist, and Morelli. The drunk wouldn't be coming home from the bar until this evening and the nudist lived in my building so it would be easy to grab him. I decided it couldn't hurt to check out Morelli's apartment.

The apartment complex was neat but not inviting to the elderly or those with children. There was no elevator and no yard. His apartment was close to the stairs on the ground floor. After knocking on the door and receiving no answer I headed around the back counting windows as I went letting Knight my Kirlia out beside me. I wanted to look in his window, but unfortunately, his curtains were drawn. Knight wanted to be a Gallade but evolution stones were expensive. Everstones were cheaper so he held one until I could afford to get him a dawn stone. He wasn't quite at the level to evolve into a Gardevior yet, he still had a month or two, but he was afraid of evolving early and a Pokemon that resists the evolution, as I know Knight will, are bound to be in a lot of pain until either they evolve or it is halted by an everstone. I don't like the idea of my Pokemon in pain. With the hidden ability, Telepathy, Knight can tell if anyone is inside. Unfortunately, it seemed as if Morelli was one of the smart ones. After knocking on all the doors and receiving the same answer of "I haven't seen him" I was at a loss.

I was sitting in my car with my Teeni induced air conditioning wondering if I should just go get the nudist from my apartment block when Morelli pulled up in a van. With a baseball cap pulled low, shades covering half his face, and a scruffy beard covering the rest I wouldn't have recognized him if he didn't have Mooch his Munchlax beside him as he went into his apartment and returned with a black duffle bag. I was so shocked he came back to his apartment that I didn't react until he had already gotten back in his van and started it up. As he pulled out I started my car and followed him to a rundown neighbourhood that was in the early stages of being reclaimed.

He parked and went into an old building converted into apartments. After parking half a block away I went into the building, there was a row of mailboxes in the foyer with names under the slot. All except one. I decided to take a chance on the unnamed one. Climbing the stairs I knocked. I heard movement and knew that there was someone on the other side of the door. Part of me hoped it wasn't Morelli. I had no clue on what to do next, did I ask politely? Did I threaten? Did I tackle him as soon as the door opened? Did I just call the police and have them come pick him up? When the door opened it was Morelli and I panicked. "Oh I'm sorry," I said. "I'm looking for Joe Juniak" hoping he didn't recognize me. Also hoping he did remember. Stupid brain.

"Sorry, no Joe Juniack here, now I'm leaving if you could step aside?" he replied.

"I'll leave you to it," I said, trying to remain calm as I turned. I was almost facing the other direction when he said "Wait, Stephanie Plum? Is that you?"

I turned back and peered at him. Hoping I had a confused surprised expression on my face. "Joe Morelli? What are you doing here?"

"I'm house sitting for a friend. What are you doing here, I haven't seen you since you jumped the curb and broke my leg with your fathers Buick," he said testily.

"My foot slipped," I smiled sweetly.

"Slipped my arse! After you jumped the curb you followed me up the sidewalk. I could have died! So, what are you really doing here? Read about me in the papers and come to screw up my life even more?"

Unfortunately this is where any possible plan I may have had went out the window. "I'm working for my cousin Vinnie and you're in violation of your bond agreement." Yep, real subtle.

He chuckled. "You? He sent you to bring me in? That's hilarious and I haven't found much funny lately."

I guess I could see that, he was looking at 20 years for murder. "You need to come in to reschedule your appointment, your mum mortgaged her house to pay your bail and she could lose it!" Trying to appeal to his familial responsibilities.

His face hardened. "I have no intention of going back into custody. They'll consider me a flight risk, lock me up and throw away the key. You know what happens to cops in prison. I stand an excellent chance of getting dead. And you'd be the last person I'd let collect the bounty money. You're a goddamn lunatic. You ran me over with a Buick. So you're wasting your time and I've got to go."

I scowled, it was his own goddamned fault. He never even called after the bakery incident. Besides, he wouldn't have broken his leg if he hadn't panicked and tripped. He put on a jacket and a backpack then grabbed the duffle. "Where are you going?" I asked as he slid a scary looking black gun into the back of his jeans.

"None of your business," he shut the door and put the key in the lock.

"Look, I may be new at this bounty hunter business but I am stubborn and competitive," I was digging into my bag for a Pokeball. "Even if I can't get you to come in today I will just find you again and try again. And again and again, till I succeed. I will get you eventually." Why was I feeling sleepy? I staggered, dropping my bag and leaning against the wall.

"While you were digging in your bag I had Munchlax use yawn. You will fall asleep soon. This proves you are way too unprepared to catch a real criminal," He unlocked the door and carried me inside. I was asleep before he put me on the couch.

I woke up on the couch with Chess sitting on the armrest by my head. My bag was on the floor beside me so I dug around until I found Knights Pokeball. "Knight, can you ask Chess what happened to me?"

Chess said you were asleep on the couch when some man let him out of his Pokeball. He was going to attack but the man said for him to protect you as he had to leave. Then he left. Chess tried to get another ball out of your bag but a beak and talons aren't enough to open the bag and he didn't want to break it.

"Thanks guys. Let's get out of here."

First Catch

Back in my car, I looked over the files again. The address for the indecent exposure was in my building, an old naked man has to be easier than Morelli. Maybe that was my problem, I should have worked up to Morelli. Once at the apartment I knocked on William Earlings door. And he opened it naked. Yuck, I did not want to know what old man bits looked like till I was that old myself.

"Mr Earling, I represent Vincent bail bonds and I'm here to inform you that you have missed your appointment and will need to come with me to reschedule," there, that sounded polite and non threatening.

"I've got shows to watch this afternoon so I'm not going." He was stubborn.

"But if we go now you will be back in time for your shows," I cajole.

"Fine, but we better make it quick." I stuffed him into a long raincoat and took his keys from the wall. After locking the apartment we went down the elevator and got in his car. I dropped him at the station and gave him his house key then drove his car back to the apartment and put his car key inside his mailbox.

Once inside my apartment I did a little happy dance to celebrate my first bounty. Since it was too late to go to the bonds office to drop off the body receipt for Mr Earling I decided on watching a movie while I brushed all of my Pokemon.

First Cheque/ Meeting Ranger

When I woke up I went for a run around the block with my Pokemon, I put food out for everyone before heading to the bathroom for a shower. I hated running, even with my Pokemon for company. It was the part of being a responsible trainer that I hated the most. With my Pokemon I went into the office to talk to Connie and hand in my Body Receipt for William Earling.

While she is writing my first bounty hunter check I ask "Connie, is there anyone I can talk to to learn more about this bounty hunting stuff?"

"Sure. Ranger. Otherwise known as Ricardo Carlos Manoso, he's the best and he owes me a favour. I'll call him to give you a crash course on how to do everything. OK?"

"That would be amazing. Thanks."

Connie called his pager and asked him to call her back.

When I got to the diner I suddenly understood what Connie meant when she said all I had to do was look for the badass. Out on the patio, with his back against the wall, sat a muscular Cuban American man about 5 foot 10, wearing baggy jeans, a tight T-shirt and lots of gold chains. Around his wrist is a black braided leather bracelet with a beautiful rainbow stone in it with a symbol I couldn't make out without staring and being creepy. He wouldn't have looked out of place on Stark street.

Lying beside his table was the biggest Arcanine I have ever seen, lying down with the fur on its back stuck up higher than the table. It was so huge it took me a moment to realise it was the wrong colour. Shiny Pokemon like Chess my Corvisquire and Nova my Riolu were considered rare, but melanistic (almost completely black with dark grey accents) were even rarer and never found in the wild. The common theory is that oddly coloured Pokemon were considered defective and kicked out of the nest by their parents. Abandoned baby Pokemon rarely survive. This Archanine was solid black instead of orange and where it was supposed to be beige it was gunmetal grey, Dark blue grey stripes replaced the customary black. Due to the saddle on its back it was obvious that the man had ridden it to the diner. Which in itself was rare is Arcanine were considered proud creatures and only those with an exceptionally close bond with their trainer will allow themselves to be ridden. About 1 in 4 if raised from a Growlithe and 1 in 10 if caught in the wild*.

I walk over and ask "Are you Ranger? I'm Stephanie Plum." I shake his hand and sit down.

"Connie says I'm supposed to give you the crash course and make you into a badass fugitive apprehension agent. Why do you want to be a bounty hunter?"

"See that crappy rust bucket over there?" I pointed at my car.

"So you need money. Anything else?"

"Right now my goal is steady employment and not raiding my emergency fund to pay my rent. I'm scarily close to doing that."

"Vinnie give you a skip?"

"Two at first. I got the indecent exposure yesterday by tricking him and talking him in circles, but I have no idea what to do when they don't want to come in. He only gave me a week to get the other one before he gave it to someone more experienced. I only got it in the first place because the original guy to have his file got appendicitis."

"Who is the second one?"

"Joe Morelli."

"You are never going to find Morelli, he's good."

"I've already found him once but I have no idea how to make him come in."

"When it comes to ones like Morelli there is no getting them to surrender. You have to make them. Morelli supposedly shot an unarmed man, Ziggy Kuleska, at the apartment of a prostitute, Carmen Sanchez. Morelli claimed that Ziggy was armed and Morelli shot him in self-defense, but no gun was recovered at the crime scene."

"Supposedly?" I was curious.

"Morelli is a smart cop and shooting an unarmed man is just dumb but all the evidence points to the fact that he did it. Still want to go after him?"


"Alright, the least I can do is help you not get killed so easily. How many Pokemon do you have? How many are suitable for this type of work?"

"I have 6 but I'm not sure which will be useful for this."

"Do you know about Sunny's Pokemon Supply and Training Fields? It's a couple of blocks from here. I'll meet you there and show you the basics."

Sunny's Pokemon Supply and Training Fields

The drive was short so I didn't bother to get Teeni out of her ball. I was regretting that by the time I pulled into the parking lot. How Ranger didn't faint from the heat while riding the giant Arcanine he called Tank I don't know. Ranger hired a field for an hour while I basked in the air conditioning.

"OK. Lay them all on the table." I dug through my pocketbook until I found all six Pokeballs.

"First rule of bounty hunting: Have all Pokeballs easily accessible. Get a belt. Know which Pokeballs are in which slot. Memorize their positions. Second rule: have at least one Pokemon out when approaching an FTA. So, let them all out."

I let Chess my Corvisquire and Rex my Dedenne out first. Then Knight my Kirlia and Nova my Riolu. I hesitated at Teeni and Big Blue.

"Why the hesitation?" he asked curiously.

"Big Blue belonged to my grandfather. While he listens to me he takes his time about it. And he is huge. I figure he would be good for intimidation but not much else."

"And the other?"

"Teeni is my youngest by about a year. I hatched her from an egg and she hasn't had her first evolution yet. She's not far off, I'm just worried about her."

"Let them both out anyway. At least I can tell you a few things to make her stronger."

Ranger didn't seem the type to be surprised by much but he was surprised at the huge Salamence and beautiful Dratini.

"OK. He is definitely intimidating enough for bounty hunting. Where did you get the Dratini egg?"

"That's a depressing story. You must have noticed that apart from Big Blue they are all young. A few years ago I came home to find my then-new husband on the dining room table with my childhood bully. Earlier Nurse Joy had told me my husband had picked up all of my Pokemon. So I went home early to ask him why. He traded all of my Pokemon for an unknown dragon egg. In hindsight the fact that I was more worried about my Pokemon than my husband cheating on me was a sign I should have listened to my grandfather and never married him in the first place. The judge agreed, my Pokemon, my egg. After the divorce was finalized she hatched. I actually thought an Applin would hatch from it. Teeni was a very happy surprise."

"You made him pay, right?"

"Because I caught him he couldn't get out of the prenup. But he had a credit card in my name and wracked up quite the debt. I couldn't prove it wasn't mine so my prenup money mostly went to pay for it. I did break his nose though."

He nodded. "If he sold all of your Pokemon and only had an egg how did you catch more?"

When I came home with only an egg and told my family what he had done my mother gave me Knight whom she had bred, his sale had fallen through, my dad gave me Chess because he was the wrong colour and the Taxi service couldn't use him and my grandfather bred Nova. She was the last one he bred before he passed away, but, because he didn't like my husband it was stipulated in his will that I couldn't get her until I divorced the Dick. So Grandma gave me her Pokeball."

"What's up with the everstone?"

"Knight wants to be a Gallade and evolution stones are expensive. Not going to say anything about Rex the Dedenne?" I asked.

"Small Pokemon are often underestimated. And considering criminals seem to think that dragons are essential, fairy types are immune to dragon moves. I have a Klefki. He's really good at picking locks. If Rex knows a paralyzing move like nuzzle, he can hide in your clothes and stun someone if they attack you. Hypnosis and other sleep-inducing attacks are good for your Kirlia. Also, telekinesis. Easier to get the skip into the car. Rule three; After they are stunned or knocked out, always cuff them. Some people can shake the moves quicker than you would expect. Confusion and charm are very useful distractions. Heal pulse because you or your Pokemon could get hurt doing this. Get Teeni to learn wrap. She can tie the FTA up if you can't get a status move close enough. With her ability, shed skin, she won't be affected if you use sleep moves or paralyzing ones. Also Misty Terrain, it prevents anyone paralyzing you or putting you to sleep," he explained. "For your yellow Riolu, screech, attract, and follow me are good moves to distract the skip. Protect is also a must for her. She won't be much of a help in dropping the skip but she will be great against their Pokemon. I have a Lucario called Lester." He says letting Lester out of his Pokeball.

A regular blue color, Lester is a tall, very strong-looking Lucario with a leather cuff around one wrist with another of those colorful stones. Lester seems very interested in Nova. "Female fighting types are rare enough, the fact that she is shiny as well is going to turn heads. You will need to use a different Pokemon if you're trying to blend in. Both her and Knight will learn heal pulse but they are not ready for that yet, they may need to evolve first."

"Thanks for this. Any other advice?"

"If you can teach one of your Pokemon aromatherapy or heal bell then do it. They remove status conditions. If you use one on the FTA after delivery then no one can complain. Still have to fill out the paperwork though."

"None of my current Pokemon can learn either of those," I sighed.

"Then get Connie to file a request for you to be allowed to own another 6 Pokemon. Having some at-home will protect it and you will need spares if some are in the Pokemon centre."

"She can do that?" I exclaimed "but I'm already licensed to have 12. Will Connie's request affect that?"

"It shouldn't affect anything. It doesn't go off your current allowance. It just allows a bounty hunter extra because of the danger. How did you get to 12?" He asked slightly confused.

"If you get to the final 4 in a showcase you get an increase to 12. If you win one you get to 18, Its the same if you compete in the championships. I was the runner-up in the only showcase I competed in. So if I get Connie to file the request then I'll have 18?"

"Yeah, but you can only carry 6 legally. Well, 6 Pokeballs. It won't count if Rex is in your pocket or Chess is sitting on the roof," he explained. "Lots of criminals use that trick to get out of fines for having too many. Lucky for you most of the time they attack with the ones they already have out first. And if you're quick or sneaky you can drop them then deal with his Pokemon."

After giving me a list of helpful moves to teach my Pokemon and a list of bounty hunting paraphernalia such as cuffs, Pokeball belt, medicine bag, heavy torch, and a bag to carry everything. He also told me to get a gun. I bought a small five-shot compact Smith & Wesson revolver and got some very potent defence spray which I would prefer to use.

That night I sorted through the TMs I still had from before my divorce, after giving several out to my Pokemon, I flew on Big Blue to the Pine Barrens to test out the new moves with my Pokemon. All thoroughly exhausted we went home, got cleaned up and slept like the dead.

Gazarra explains Morelli

I awoke to a knocking on my front door looking through the peephole. I opened the door to the smell of doughnuts and coffee held by my favourite cop Gazzara. Gazarra was a friend all through childhood and ended up married to my cousin Shirley. Over the delicious coffee and doughnuts, Gazarra tells me that the most likely reason that Morelli is still in town is probably because he is looking for the witness to clear his name.

"Morelli had insisted that there was another person in Carmen Sanchez's apartment, A man with a flat nose. But none of the tenants could remember seeing a gun in Ziggy's hand and only three remembered someone unfamiliar. That unfamiliar man disappeared before the cops arrived. He is probably who Morelli is looking for. Him or Carmen, no one has seen her since the shooting."

"Did he say why he was there?"

"Morelli claimed Carmen had called him concerning a police matter while he was off duty and that when he got to Carmen's apartment, Ziggy Kulesza answered the door and drew on him. Morelli claimed he shot Ziggy in self-defense but the immediate investigation didn't turn up any evidence that Ziggy had been armed, no one else saw a gun."

"Did Morelli have any ideas on the gun?"

"Said that it fell to the side when he shot Ziggy, and that the flat nosed guy must have it."

"If that's true, surely he got rid of it by now?"

We agree that if Morelli was telling the truth then finding the gun would be nigh impossible so the best way to catch Morelli would be to follow the same trail to find the missing witness that Morelli was chasing. Hopefully we will cross paths and I can have another shot at bringing him in. I really need that $10,000 to pay my rent this month so I don't have to raid either my emergency savings or Knights evolution stone savings.

Steph meets Stark St

My first stop is the fighting-type gym on Stark street that the victim Ziggy Kuleska frequented. I found a parking spot about half a block away from the gym. I put Teeni away and let Nova out of her ball, being a fighting type herself I was hoping that people would assume that I was there for training and leave me alone. The area around the gym was rundown and boarded up, and I could feel someone watching me. Looking around I noticed that there was a shadow in a second-story window. Hmmm, I hope that's Morelli. It would certainly make my job easier.

Inside the gym, there were Pokemon and trainers alike training. I found Jimmy Alpha the Gym Leader in the manager's office. Unfortunately, he seemed to know nothing about why Morelli would shoot Ziggy or why either of them was at Carmen Sanchez's apartment nor where Carmen was now. So, I learned nothing. He seemed genuinely upset that Ziggy was dead and had no clue who the missing witness could be and he also had no idea why Morelli would be at Carmen Sanchez's apartment where Ziggy shot. He was walking me out when we got distracted talking about Nova. He was fascinated by the fact that I had a Riolu that was not only shiny but female.

He introduced us to his prize boxing champion Ramirez the Hitmonchan who was watching us closely as Alpha and I talked. Feeling breath on the back of my neck I turn to find Ramirez is very close behind me, looking between Nova and me. "Take a step back please," I told him.

"Chan, Hitmo." He murmurs then steps between me and Nova and reaches out to touch her.

"Rio!" She jumps sideways and he attacks her with a throat chop which throws her across the room.

"Nova!" I yell. "What the hell is he doing? She is only young, stop him!" I exclaim rushing to her side. She slowly rises to her knees, obviously hurt, and starts to glow. Suddenly a protect springs up around me and I realize I turned my back on Ramirez the Hitmonchan. The protect cracks, then shatters under his bullet punch, she launches an aura sphere at him, throwing him back just as Alpha recalls him back into his Pokeball. "You brilliant girl you evolved, learned to protect, and Aura sphere. We will have to call Ranger so you can show Lester." Instead of my little yellow Riolu, she became a beautiful yellow Lucario. I carefully hugged her then dug through my bag for the medicine kit Ranger recommended I get. Neither Knight nor Nova knew heal pulse yet so they wouldn't be much help. Alpha handed me a full heal. "I'm really sorry about him, he has this thing with female fighting types, he really doesn't like it when they refuse him."

"Then there is either something wrong with him or your training program. He attacks either of us again and I'll press charges!"

"Please, just calm down before calling the cops! He can't take another assault charge. I'll get him some help, I promise," he pleaded.

"See that you do." I put Nova back into her ball and left.

Morelli on Stark

As I was walking to my car a man in a hood grabbed my arm and pulled me into the garage next to the gym. It was Morelli, he must have been the shadow in the window. "What were you thinking! That gym is dangerous, that Hitmonchan has multiple assault and rape charges, the victims always disappear before they arrive at court, so the charges are thrown out. Stay away from here!"

"How come no one's done something then. If the victims always disappear then it should be obvious that something is wrong. Now, are you going to come to the station with me?" My hand was in my bag and wrapped around my gun. I really hoped I didn't have to use it.

"Why would I do that? Out here at least I have a chance at finding the witness or Ziggy's gun. In jail all I would get is dead," he was talking to me slowly like I was a child. That made me angry enough to pull my gun. Which he promptly took away from me.

"You have a gun? You have a gun in your bag? Do you have a license for carrying concealed?" He exclaimed.

"Of course I have a license," maybe, "now give me back my gun!"

"Once I see you safely to your car and away from here before you screw up my surveillance. Where is your car?"

"Half a block that way," I pointed. He pulled the hood up and kept his head down as he led me to my car, practically dragging me by my arm. Someone had spray-painted my rust bucket dayglow colors. I tried not to read the misspelled writing. I pulled out my keys while he tried not to laugh. I got in the car, let out Teeni for temperature control, and started the car. I turned to Morelli to demand my gun when I noticed his slack-jawed expression. "What? Give me my gun, Morelli."

He handed it over still struck dumb. I waved my hand in front of his face. "Morelli? Are you ok?"

Snapping out of it, "You have a Dratini?" He asked incredulously.

"Yes. She was the only good thing to come out of my marriage. I will get you one day. Obviously not today but I will get you eventually."

Filling the Tank

After I left Morelli at the gym I decided to quit for the day and go do something that Ranger suggested. I was going to get more Pokemon. After parking my car in my parking lot I went to the roof with a stop in my apartment and let Big Blue out of his Pokeball. I put his saddle collar around his neck and deactivated the nano technology that had shrunk it down. When in my apartment I had changed into clothes that were more comfortable flying in; jeans, a Leather jacket, gloves, and motorcycle helmet. while better for flying, they were horrible in this heat. After I had Teeni ice me down with a Icy Wind I climbed aboard Big Blue's back and we flew to Point Pleasant.

At the shore, I dropped Nova off at the Pokemon centre, bought some dive and net pokeballs, and hired a fishing rod.

My father had always loved to take me fishing when I was younger. For the most part, it was catch and release, strengthening my Pokemon, but never keeping, as the majority of Pokemon we caught were the one's my mother would disapprove of. I always wanted a Milotic but, unfortunately, while my mother agreed that Milotic was a suitable Pokemon for a young woman, she believed that its pre-evolved form was ugly and therefore not something a young girl should want to have. She approved of Goldeen, Staryu, and Horsey as Pokemon for young girls to get from fishing. She did not approve of Magikarp because no girl or even young woman should ever want its evolved form of Gyarados. Any Pokemon that could be described as ugly, gross, or masculine we're not allowed. Growing up I had to abide by my mother's views on what Pokemon were appropriate for young girls. Unfortunately what I wanted didn't always match up to my mother's expectations, so, now that I was an adult I was going to get the Feebas I wanted.

I was also going to get a couple of Magikarp. Magikarp themselves we're not in high demand, however, a lot of people wanted Gyarados but did not have the time to raise the Magikarp themselves. I was going to catch a few, raise them, and sell them when they were about to evolve. Unfortunately, this took a long time so it was a long-term money plan. Any other Pokemon I caught but I didn't want to keep, I was going to sell on the Global Trading System (GTS). They should give me enough money to buy Knight his shiny stone.

By the time I went to pick up Nova from the Pokemon Centre, it was nearly dark and I had a Feebas, a Staryu, a Horsea, a Goldeen, and 3 Magikarp. One of those Magikarp was gold and when it was ready to evolve would bring me at least $100,000, maybe more, I wasn't knowledgeable about the current prices of Pokemon other than the fact that shiny Pokemon were worth about triple the price of normal colors and that the price involved had to do with rarity and strength of the Pokemon. I went home and put all of my new Pokemon into the big fish tank along the lounge room wall that came with my apartment. After the disaster at the gym, I was feeling better about myself and the strength of my Pokemon.

Unfortunately, I had to sell my computer to pay my rent last month so I couldn't put the Goldeen and the Staryu onto the GTS. It will have to wait until tomorrow but I would have to do it early as I had yet to go to Connie and ask her to request that I'm allowed more Pokemon and with these new additions I was one over my limit. I fell asleep on the couch watching my new Pokemon in the tank that filled one wall of my lounge room. All of my other Pokemon other than Big Blue we're spread out around me.

Ramirez is Vulgar

My Pokemon and I woke up at 2 am to rubbing and shuffling sounds outside my door. Keep everyone quiet, I silently told Knight. What is out there? I asked him.

A big and very strong Hitmonchan. His mind is disgusting. He wants to scare you and Nova. Knight shuddered. Ramirez, I thought.

"Hitmo chan chan hitmochan." We heard from the other side of the door.

He says that he knows we know he's there.

"Leave Ramirez or I will call the police," hoping my voice isn't shaking.

"Hitmonchan chan hitmo." we hear back

He says his trainer Jimmy Alpha tried to call you earlier but the phone was disconnected. Damn. I was going to have to fix that in the morning. And get an answering machine.

After a lot more rubbing sounds and some threats of harm to both Nova and me, Ramirez left. I turned all of the lights on in my apartment and double-checked all of the windows. It wouldn't stop him from breaking in but it would force him to make noise that my Pokemon and hopefully the neighbours would hear. None of us got much sleep and being afraid irritated all of us but especially Nova. She was afraid she couldn't protect us and her fear made her angry. Through Knight who translated her fears for me, I told her there was nothing to be ashamed of being afraid of him. He had a lot more experience than she did, she wouldn't even be able to beat Lester and we knew he wouldn't hurt her. I told her as long as your anger doesn't blind you then use it but when it came to Ramirez, ambushing him was our only chance. She reluctantly agreed but stood sentinel as we tried to sleep.

Morelli's Apartment V Carmens

We woke up early pleasantly surprised that Ramirez had not come back. After getting ready for the day I carefully put my eye to the peephole of the door and try to look down the corridor. Nothing. Opening my door and inch, Knight went outside to see if anything dangerous was out there. After he gave the all clear I stepped into the corridor. I went to shut the door only to find a substance I did not want to name all over my door. With Knight using telekinesis and my new Horsea Herald* using bubble we managed to get the door clean. I had decided that I wasn't going to be caught unprepared again. With Rex in my pocket, Nova and Knight by my side I left my apartment building and got in my car.

After going to the Pokemon Centre and registering the Goldeen and the Staryu into the GTS I went to the bond agency and asked Connie if I could borrow the phone. After arguing with the phone company they reluctantly agreed to reconnect my phone today so long as I paid the bill today. After paying the bill over the phone I hung up.

"Ranger tells me that there is a form I can fill out to apply for another 6 Pokemon?" I asked Connie as I gave her the phone back.

"Sure. Now that you have apprehended one FTA you're an official bounty hunter and can get another 6 Pokemon. But it can take up to two weeks for the approval to come back." She explained as she handed me a form to fill out.


I headed back to Morelli's apartment, this time to look inside.

Ranger was already there in a shiny black Mercedes when I arrived. I had called him from the office before I left.

"How do we do this?" I asked, "Do we pick the lock or break the window or something?"

He shows me a set of keys in his hand. "I asked the super for the keys when I got here."

After entering the apartment looking around, finding nothing, Ranger checked Morelli's answering service. We had nothing of value, only his mother asking him to call her and a couple of women looking for a hookup. He flipped the answering service over and gave me the numbers on the bottom. "If you've got these," he said, "You can check his answering service from anywhere."

He handed me Morelli's spare keys off of the hook if I needed to come back later. We locked up behind ourselves, handed the key back to the super, and Ranger left.

I looked at the keys that the Ranger had handed me. There was the house key and there was a car key. It wouldn't hurt to check in his car, I told myself. I pressed the unlock button and a big red Cherokee beeped and flashed its lights. After searching the car and finding nothing it wasn't hard to convince myself a car sitting in the lot had to run every so often. Not running is bad for the car. Once behind the wheel, I talked myself into driving around the block. After that, I kind of decided to keep the car. It's not like he was using it and it would make my job easier. For the first few blocks, I was terrified of Morelli somehow realizing I had stolen his car so when the car phone rang I nearly crashed. It was his mother and she was not happy that I was in her son's car. Being the suave bounty Hunter that I am, I faked static and hung up on her. I drove to the apartment building where Morelli had shot Ziggy.


Starting with the apartment across from Carmens which still had police tape on the door I asked the tenants of the building if anyone had seen Morelli or Carmen since the shooting. No to both for the entire building. I also asked about Ziggy's missing gun and the missing flat nosed witness. Again no one had seen the gun and only three had seen the witness during the incident; the woman across the hall who was watching her grandchildren, an old Vietnam war vet and a man who had been hit by a car and died the week before.

I talked to the building behind Carmens just in case someone had seen the Flatnose do a spiderman down into the alley but apparently the streetlights are always broken and the only interesting thing anyone noticed about that night was a sound like a car backfiring (the shooting i thought) and the sound of a refrigerator truck running in the alley.


Between Carmen's apartment and the Stark Street fighting gym were a couple of street Pokemon sitting on a corner. One was a melanistic Persian and the other was a Miltank of all Pokemon. What was a country Pokemon that belonged on a farm in the middle of the city? I let Knight out to play translator then went over to them to ask if they could answer any of the questions that I had been asking today. They refused to answer any questions until I had given food to them, apparently they would use their moves for people in exchange for food, they were part of a street Pokemon pack that bribed, begged and stole food to feed one another. Jackie the Miltank would give milk for food and Lula the Persian would use payday in exchange for food.

Apparently Carmen was a frequent customer of theirs; she loved Jackie's milk and needed money so she regularly traded Pokemon food and berrys with them. Neither had seen her all month, the last time they had seen her was not long after Ramirez the Hitmonchan started following her around.

"One last question, why is a melanistic Persian on the street? There are people everywhere who would pay big money for an oddly coloured Pokemon?"

Knight replied She says she used to belong to a trainer but she isn't very strong and got injured to the point she cant have eggs. Her human abandoned her when she was just a meowth because she wasn't useful to him if she was weak and couldn't breed.

"That's horrible! If either of you want a home I'm willing to help you find one." I promised.

They said thankyou but they don't need a home, they are happy where they are and Jackie does have a human. He just believes that Pokemon are technically wild animals so she should be able to get food for herself. But they will keep your offer in mind for the future.

Ranger to the Rescue

I was already in Stark Street so I went to the bar that Connie said Clarence Sampson the DUI liked to frequent. Deciding that I would look out-of-place in the bar, I parked at the curb between the bar and his house thinking that when he was finished drinking he would stumble home. After an hour of waiting, I saw Clarence staggering up the sidewalk. Double-checking his face against the picture, I got out of my car with Knight and walked up to him as if he was a friend. He was too drunk to be very coherent so it was easy enough to convince him to get into my car. Once in the car, I had Knight use hypnotize to put him to sleep. At the police station, I called for a couple of uniforms to help me get him into the station. It was too late to take my body receipt to Connie so I went home.

Once in my parking lot, I parked in the middle under a light. After removing the distributor cap I went and sat against the wall under an azalea bush. My plan was simple: when Morelli came to steal his car back I would get Rex to zap him. By the time it was 2 in the morning it was raining I was exhausted and miserable. I decided it was a lost course and we're up stairs to have a hot shower and go to sleep.

When I got up the stairs I let Rex out in the lounge room, put my bag and l my belt with all my Pokemon on my bathroom sink, stripped naked, and stepped into the shower. I was finally feeling warm and clean when I realized there was someone in my bathroom. I froze. Morelli ripped the shower curtain from its little hooks and threw it on the floor behind him. He looked furious. " "Where is my distributor cap," he snarled.

"I don't have it and give me that towel," I had accidentally left the distributor cap downstairs in the Azalea bush. But I wasn't going to tell him that. He pulled my bag off the sink and emptied it all over the floor. He grabbed the handcuffs and handcuffed me to my shower rod. I refused to be embarrassed.

"If you're not going to tell me you can stay here until I find it." He left the room. I could hear him rummaging around my apartment. I hoped he didn't notice Rex out of his ball. Eventually, he came back into the bathroom and leered at me. "Do you get a kick out of screwing with me? What did I do to deserve disaster like you following me around? I think I'm just going to leave you there. Maybe you'll learn a lesson about messing with me."

"Wait," I called out to him, "How am I supposed to get down?" He brought the handset for my phone and set it on the bathroom sink. Then he left. After he was gone Rex poked his head around the door jam. He went to my Pokeballs and started letting them out. Knight brought me a towel. Now, I ask myself, how was I going to get out of this mess?

Everybody looked at the cuff. Nobody could figure out a way to get them off me without hurting me nor could anyone find the key. Morelli must have taken it. I couldn't call my mother as she would send my father. I couldn't call my sister as she would call my mother who would send my father. I would hang here and starve to death before I called my ex-husband. That left Ranger. It took mentioning that I was naked before he would come and rescue me. He picked the lock on my front door and stood staring at the crowd of Pokemon in my bathroom, his Klefki floating about his head. After ordering most of my Pokemon into my bedroom, Knight and Nova refused to leave.

"Sorry for calling at 3 o'clock in the morning. Thank you for coming to rescue me."

"How did this happen," he asked as his Klefki went to work on my cuffs with Knight watching him closely. Nova was watching Ranger.

"After we went to Morelli's apartment and you gave me his key I may have commandeered his car. I was hoping I could catch him when he came to steal it back. At about 2 I gave up and went to have a shower then go to bed. He was furious when he realized I had taken the distributor cap from his car. He ripped my shower curtain off, handcuffed me to my shower curtain rod and I'm assuming trashed my apartment looking for the cap. Rex was in the living room so when Morelli left, Rex let everyone out. No one could figure out how to get me down without hurting me. So I called you hoping you could get me down." While I was talking, his Klefki had opened the cuff around my wrist. For some reason, the cuff attached to the curtain rod was glowing purple. It clicked and fell off. Knight started celebrating, apparently he is a very quick learner. Or maybe Klefki was explaining how locks work as he was freeing me.

"Thanks again for helping me out and for your Klefki teaching Knight how to pick locks."

He smirked "It was worth it to see you wet and in a towel. His name is Puck and he lives to pick locks. You may have noticed that he has a handcuff key in his collection but he didn't use it? I'm actually not sure if he doesn't use it because he doesn't like his keys getting scratched or if he really does just like picking locks."

He says anyone can use a key only someone skilled can pick a lock. Knight said in her head.

I relayed what Knight said to Ranger and he smirked, "sounds about right," he said.

"Congratulations on your Riolu evolving" He left. I decided to clean the mess Morelli had made in the morning and went to bed.

Steph V Lonnie

When I woke I cleaned up the mess Morelli had made of my apartment with the help of my Pokemon. Some of it looked like he had been only making a mess for the hell of it. After cleaning my apartment again, I decided to take my main Pokemon for a run. I went to the roof and let Big Blue out of the Pokeball, I put his saddle collar around his neck and deactivated the nano technology. I flew with Big Blue to the park after another icing by Teeni. After removing my outer layer of protective flying gear, Nova ran beside me, Knight practiced his teleporting, Chess flew above me, Big Blue lazed about in the sun with Rex sitting on his head and Teeni swam in the lake.

After our run we flew back home. I shrunk down Big Blues saddle. I had a shower and got ready for a day of bounty hunting. Today I was going after Lonnie Dodd, an FTA for auto theft. Connie had given me his file after I bought in William Earling the nudist. I knocked on his door and identified myself. He isn't as cooperative as the nudist and the drunk. He yanked my bag off of my shoulder and slammed the door.

I let Rex, Nova, and Knight out. I had put them back in their balls while in the car and forgot to let them out again. Always letting them out before confronting a skip is a habit I was going to have to learn the hard way it seems.

Telepathically having Knight tell Rex and Nova my plan, I knocked on the door again. This time he opens the door pointing my gun at me. I had forgotten it was in my bag. Nova uses Protect, Knight hits him with confusion and Rex with a nuzzle. He hits the floor paralyzed. A Meowth jumps down from the top of the fridge with fury swipes but Nova hits it with the super effective aura sphere move. Knight uses telekinesis to bring me my bag and gun. I'm so glad I had that TM left over from before my divorce. He also finds the Meowths Pokeball and I put the unconscious Meowth away.

After I cuff Dodd I have Knight use hypnosis to put him to sleep. Once he was levitated into the backseat I used the second set of cuffs to connect him to the handrail. Ranger was right about some of them being resistant, by the time I got Dodd to the police station he had shaken off the hypnosis and was thrashing while shouting obscenities in the backseat. As I couldn't get close enough to uncuff him from the door Knight hit him with hypnosis again. After levitating him inside and collecting my body receipt, I had to fill out a huge pile of paperwork for the Pokemon moves used on a human. Explaining that he pulled a gun on me. I only left out that it was my gun he pointed at me.


I had called my mother to inform her I was coming for dinner. I should have just showed up. Mum had invited the appliance salesman, Bernie Kuntz, in a misguided attempt at a blind date. I was not interested, but I did learn that Ziggy had frequented Sal's butcher across from his store and I got a lot of leftovers so I guess it was worth it.

Poor Lula

The next morning I found Lula, the Street Persian from Stark Street that I had Knight translate for, hung outside my apartment window, on the fire escape, raped and beaten nearly to death. I threw open the window and let Knight out to teleport her inside, there is so much blood. He manages a heal pulse but it is very weak. He teleports us to the Pokemon Centre where I tell the nurse Joy that Lula is technically a street Pokemon. I just found her like that. Knight teleported me back home to have a shower and get my car.

I pull up by Jackie's corner and have Knight explain that Lula is badly injured at the Pokemon centre. We sat in the waiting area for several hours and I spent much of that time reading old newspapers. I found in yesterday's paper that the vietnam vet I talked to in Carmens apartment had been killed in a drive-by shooting and the cops were attributing it to gang violence. Chills went down my spine. Two of the three people who had seen the missing flat nosed witness were dead. The only one left is the grandmother. Eventually Nurse Joy informed me that Lula was out of surgery. It took a bit of explaining to Nurse Joy that Jackie was also a street Pokemon and a friend to Lula before she would let me visit the injured Persian with a Miltank in tow.

I left Jackie at the Pokemon Centre and headed to the parking lot to use the car phone. At first Gazarra didn't believe me that the witnesses were being targeted, he thought that it was random, but a little crazy hysterical yelling later he promised to keep her safe then hung up.

I was in a bit of a daze on the way home. This was getting dangerous, two witnesses were dead and the Pokemon who talked to her about Ramirez following Carmen was badly abused. I was really dreading cleaning up the blood on my carpet and the fire escape.

Morelli can Cook?

When I returned home from the Pokemon Centre, Morelli was in my kitchen cooking.

"What are you doing in my apartment? You know what, I don't care, I dont have the energy right now, I have a lot of blood to clean up and then I want to curl up on the couch with my Pokemon."

"I already cleaned up the blood on the fire escape and the carpet, though that will need professional cleaning. Did you know that you left the window open when you left this morning? And I'm here to offer you a deal. If you help me clear my name I'll let you bring me in to collect the bounty."

"It won't matter, I only had the week before Vinnie gave the file to someone else, and that week ends tomorrow."

"Help me and when we have the witness I'll call Vinnie myself and tell him that the only one I'll let take me in is you. He'll have to give my file back to you."

"Why do you want me to help you? People keep getting hurt"

"I keep calling him the witness but it's possible he killed Carmen and people keep dying because you keep getting close to the truth. If you keep pushing he will come after you eventually then I'll be there to grab him."

"Great, from bounty hunter to bait," I sighed. "What do you need me to do?"

"Just keep walking around Stark asking questions, it's working so far."

"Alright, I'll play bait, you grab anyone who wants to grab me. Now I want the full story. How you know Carmen, what you were doing there, the shooting, everything."

So, over a tasty dinner I didn't think he was capable of making, he explained everything to me. He explained that Carmen was an informant and she had called him to her apartment because she had something important to tell him, but when he got there it was Ziggy who answered the door. The flat nosed guy was there and he somehow recognised Morelli. Ziggy pulled a gun and so Morelli pulled his gun and fired. The only explanation Morelli could come up with for the lack of evidence that Ziggy had a gun was that the gun misfired. The next thing Morelli knew was that he was looking at the ceiling and there was no gun, no witness and no Carmen.

"I think Ziggy was cleaning up the assault and rape victims from Ramirez, that's what he was doing there. I think Carmen was dead in the bedroom when I arrived, and that's why Ziggy freaked and pulled a gun on me. I need the witness," he was adamant.

"There is only one door."

"I think Flatnose grabbed the gun and Carmen and took them both out the window. He could have jumped, he would have been injured but it's possible."

"Neighbours say that the alley is always dark and that night there was a truck parked in it. If he jumped to the top of the truck he wouldn't have been hurt that badly." I explained, "Now tell me how this means I get my money."

"If you help me prove I shot Ziggy in self defence I'll let you walk me to the station."

"How do you expect me to find your witness? What if he does come after me?"

"You will be wearing a wire and I'll wire your apartment so I'll hear if someone comes in. All you have to do is what you have already been doing. Walk up and down Stark Street asking questions. Take a couple of pictures with you. Generally draw attention and make a nuisance of yourself."

"Why me?"

"It's getting harder for me to move around, do we have a deal?"

"Fine," I sigh. "Time for you to go. I've had a long horrible day."


We woke up to Ramirez outside our door again talking about getting his present and what he wanted to do to Nova. After he left most of us went back to sleep, the Feebas, Herald the Horsea and Nova decided to keep watch.

Wearing a Wire

The next morning Morelli wakes me by knocking on my door in a maintenance man uniform. While I'm in the shower he places two sound recorders in my electrical sockets. One in my lounge room and the other in my bedroom. I get dressed in jeans and a shirt and walk out to find Morelli looking at the Pokemon in my tank.

"You have too many Pokemon. You could get in serious trouble for that." he remarks amused, not even turning around.

"I have a licence." No need to tell him it hasn't come yet.

"Bounty hunters are allowed an extra six Pokémon, like cops, so twelve all up. There are thirteen in this apartment."

"And you can be allowed more if you compete in tournaments or showcases. I got my allotment that way. I'm allowed up to 18. And two of those are on the GTS for sale so they don't really count."

He turns to me. "18? How long have you had that allotment for?"

"It used to be 12 until I became a bounty hunter and filled out a heap of paperwork. Now, how does this wire thing work?"

He taped a little flat disk under my navel and told me it only had a short range. "I'll be able to hear everything so if you are going to go somewhere tell me so I can keep up."

Walking up and down Stark Street for 5 hours, with pictures of Morelli, Carmen Sanchez and Ziggy Kuleska, while asking if anyone had seen a man with a flat nose, was excruciating especially in the heat. After dropping some Poke Food off for Jackie, I called it a day and went home. Once home I removed the wire, got changed into some comfortable clothes and filled up a basin with water. With the basin on my coffee table, ghostbusters in the DVD* player I got my new, as yet unnamed Feebas out of the tank and put him in the basin. Time for some TLC while I watch my favourite movie.

Beyers goes Boom

While he is hiding in her apartment, Vinnie's regular bounty hunter, Morty Beyers, comes by and requests his case files back, since he's recovered from his appendicitis.

Again Morelli woke me up. Is he one of those heathen morning people? After a relaxing evening spent watching Ghostbusters with the newly named Murray* the Feebas I was ready to spend the day earning my $10,000 playing bait to find Morelli's missing flat-nosed witness. We were enjoying the donuts and coffee that Morelli bought when there was a knock on the door. I ask "Who is it?"

"Morty Beyers"

"Just a minute," Morelli grabs his coffee and goes into my room as I open the door with the chain on.

"I don't suppose you have any ID?" not that he needs it, he looks like he should still be in the hospital. He showed me his driver's license and I let him in.

"Do you want to sit down? You don't look so good."

"No thanks. If I sit it will be difficult to stand again."

"So, what can I do for you?"

"Vinnie said that you had my files? Sorry being a bounty hunter didn't work out for you."

"I brought a couple of them in, so, it wasn't a total bust."

"What about Morelli?"

"Saw him a couple of times but couldn't get close enough to bring him in."

"And, his car in your parking lot?"

"I stole it. My plan was to grab him when he came to steal back his car. Didn't work out.``

"You stole it?," he actually sounded impressed. As if he wasn't using my wall to hold himself up. "That's awesome. Shame it didn't work."

"Are you sure you don't want to sit down and have some water?"

"Thanks but no. I've got to get to work Just wanted to get the files."

I went to the kitchen to put the files together and rushed back to the door. "I think that's all of it."

"Are you going to keep his car for a while?"

"Hmm. Not sure it is definitely preferable to my car and i could always park it out the front of his mothers house in the dead of night and put the keys in her letterbox."

"If you could catch him tomorrow, would you bring him in?"

"It's $10 grand. Money I desperately need. So, Yeah.``

He smiled at me. "I'd do the same thing. Vinnie would pay you anyone who brought someone back into the system. Thankyou for the files, I'd better get going."

"Take it easy."

"That's why I'm taking the elevator."

I closed the door, latched the chain and turned the deadbolt. I went to the window to try and catch him leaving. "Do you think he suspected you were here?"

"He's not as stupid or as nice as he wants you to think. If he thought I was here he would have pulled his gun."

In the parking lot Beyers was looking around Morelli's car, peering into windows and pulling on handles. He wrote something, probably the licence number onto the top of the folder then went over and did the same to Morellis van.

"Damn. I'm going to need to get a new car soon. Alright, I'm heading to Stark. Follow me in about an hour." And he left.

Unfortunately as I watched him leave I saw Beyers returning from the opposite direction. He pulled up next to Morellis' truck and got out and used a key to open the door. He must have stolen Morelli's keys from my bag when I went and got the files. I had Knight teleport me to the parking lot. "What are you doing, Beyers? You can't steal it!" he says as he throws a bag into the car.

"Sure I can. You did. My wife kicked me out and my car keeps dying. Morellis' truck would be really helpful to me while I catch him." He got in and closed the door. I had been stalking my way toward Beyers while we talked. I would probably be dead if Knight had not teleported me back upstairs as the car exploded. The big Boom shook the windows and I hugged Knight. That could have been me. We went back down stairs again. Everyone was pouring into the parking lot as sirens and fire trucks poured in from the street.

It could have been me. The thought kept reappearing in my mind. After the police and fire brigade had interviewed everyone, I went back upstairs. "Morelli if you can hear me call." The phone rang.

"What's up?"

"There was an incident in my parking lot. It's full of police and firefighters. I will explain later but it's going to take me a few hours to get my car and get to Stark."

"Are you ok?"

"Yes, I was upstairs," thanks to Knight, "but no one can get their cars out."

"Ok, Come when you can. Don't forget the transmitter."

It could have been me. It should have been me. I'm definitely irritating someone but who would use explosives?

Stephanie goes slutty to Stark.

With the explosive death of Morty Beyers I really needed to speed things up. So I dressed in a short skirt and tight low cut top, did the make-up and hair, and made myself look sluttish. Very eye-catching. The transmitter was visible everywhere I tried so I put it in my underpants. I would love to see the look on Morelli's face when he realizes where I put it.

I put the protective gear on and flew to Morellis apartment to get my crappy dayglow car, filled it full of oil, stripped out of the protective gear and fixed my hair. Once on Stark I left Teeni in the car to keep it cool for me and Rex was out of his ball sleeping in my bag. I had my hand in my bag wrapped around the defence spray I bought after Ranger took me to Sunnys. I walked up and down the street asking about Carmen Sanchez, rumours that she had been seen with Ramirez and if anyone had seen someone with a flat nose. After an hour I visited Jackie on her corner, then went to Jimmy Alphas office to complain about Ramirez leaving a mess on my door and for what I suspected he did to Lula. He apologised for Ramirez's behaviour and asked that I stay away from Stark Street while he trains Ramirez for an upcoming battle, "He loses focus when you're around, starts thinking about your female Lucario." Then I went back to my car and went home.

Unfortunately, home was where I had to explain to Morelli about Beyers and his truck.

Stephanies theory

The next day I just sat in my car with Teeni keeping it cool. Being a visible presence but not risking anyone blowing up my car. Jimmy Alpha came up to my driver's window. I wound it down.

"I need to keep up my surveillance for Morelli. I'm sure you understand Jimmy."

"But why Stark," he asked, looking confused. "If it were me I'd watch his relatives and friends. Why Stark and Carmen Sanchez?"

"After talking to everyone in her building and quite a few Stark residents I have a theory. I think Ramirez abused Carmen just like he abused Lula. I've heard he used to follow her around.

Ziggy and the Flatnose guy were probably there to keep her quiet and stop her from making a fuss. As you've said he can't take another assault charge and he is popular. But she had already called Morelli. So, Morelli walked in on it and Ziggy panicked. Morelli probably shot Ziggy in self-defense just like he said. And Somehow Carmen and the other guy and Ziggy's gun managed to disappear. I think Morelli's trying to find them, it's the only way to prove his innocence. And I think Stark Street is the logical place to look."

"Where did you come up with such a crazy idea?" he was shaking his head.

"After reading the arrest report. And talking to a lot of people."

After he left, still shaking his head, I stayed for another hour then went to the park with my pokemon before going home.

From a Squire to a Knight

Morelli woke me again. He seriously needs to understand that there is such a thing as too early. He says something about his van finished being painted and looked different. He just needed to go out and steal some plates. He also said don't do anything dangerous as he wouldn't be able to hear me. Or something. I did say it was too early for clear thinking. Right?

After coffee and a run we had breakfast. Dressing in more comfortable clothes, I decided to just be a visible presence on Stark as talking was getting me nowhere and I promised Morelli that I wouldn't do anything dangerous while he was out finding a new car. After 2 hours of sitting in my car my butt fell asleep. I had been playing a game with Knight while people watching Stark Street and I decided I should get out and do some stretches. I left the car door open and stood in the oven like heat. I am so glad Teeni can cool down the car. Reaching my arms above my head I heard my back pop. I was standing back up from touching my toes when I noticed Ramirez less than 2 metres away from me.

"Stay away from me Ramirez." I told him. The next thing I knew was I was on the ground looking up and my face hurt. Ramirez had punched me! I was hearing loud shouts of "Hitmonchan" and "Corvisquire" as Knight used his still weak heal pulse on me and I sat up to see what was going on.

Chess had been sitting on top of the gym this whole time and while in this stage of evolution he is a pure flying type, he was close to evolving and his next evolution as a dual flying steel type was weak to fire. This meant that Chess didn't like the heat, and he was very grumpy about sitting on a roof in a heatwave. It looked like with Ramirez's attack on me, Chess had decided to take his irritation out on Ramirez.

Ramirez was trying to throw thunder punches at Chess but he was fast and kept using tailwind to increase his speed. Chess hit Ramirez with repeated fly, brave bird and air slash attacks, all super effective against Ramirez. In between those attacks were the occasional thief, payback, retaliate, reversal, endure and brick break. For every one hit of Ramirez on Chess, Chess hit back with five. But it was obvious to everyone watching, and people had come out of the nearby buildings to watch the fight, Ramirez was at a higher level than Chess. Even with Chess hitting more frequently, Chess was more tired. Then Chess flew up and started to glow. At the tail end of that Fly, Chess was no longer a medium sized bird but one big enough to carry a rider. Chess had evolved into a steel grey Corviknight. Under normal circumstances evolving would have made Chess stronger, but this evolution had the drawback of making him much larger and unfortunately he was not used to his new size and lack of manoeuvrability, so when Ramirez started alternating a super effective fire punch in with the super effective thunder punch he had been continuously using before? Well I could see that Chess couldn't last much longer. As I had been watching the fight I pulled the defence spray out of my bag along with Chess's Pokeball and had been telepathically relaying my instructions through Knight.

When Chess flys up next, have Teeni wrap around Ramirez, I'm going to hit him with the defence spray so have her keep her face away from me. Knight, have Chess land beside you and hit him with a heal pulse.

So that's what we did. If it was immensely satisfying to have Ramirez screaming because of the spray then I wasn't going to say anything.

Knight hit him with hypnotize, Teeni shed your skin and back away. Ramirez hit the ground with a satisfying thud.

"I thought you said you were going to fix his training," I said to Alpha who had come running out as Ramirez screamed. "He attacked me unprovoked. Again. There is nothing you can say to convince me not to press charges this time." Even with that heal pulse from Knight, my face was still throbbing, so, I believed I would have a nasty bruise to show the cops.

After I collected Teeni's shed skin I put everyone except Teeni back in their balls and went to the Pokemon Centre. I left Knight, Chess and Teeni with the nurses to be looked over and went home to give all of my remaining Pokemon a good bath and brush.

After collecting my Pokemon from the Pokemon Centre and then putting Teeni's Shed Skin into the GTS, the next day was fairly boring. Just wandering around Stark Street with pictures of Carmen Sanchez asking if anyone saw her or Morelli. Oh, and pressing charges against Ramerez. Mustn't forget that.

Sals Gal

On the way home from Stark street I drove past the Appliance store and remembered an advertisement for a blender that came with daiquiri mix. I needed a new blender. So I went in, got my blender and my daiquiri mix and happened to look across the street. Sals Butcher. Bernie the salesman had said that Ziggy Kuleska had frequented the butcher across the street. So I put my purchases into my car and went to see a butcher for some dinner.

"Welcome to Sals. How can I help you?"

"What would you suggest for dinner for two?"

"I just got this flounder in?"

"Perfect. I'll have some of that please."

As Sal was wrapping up my flounder, a delivery guy came in and he had a flat nose, he was using his Machoke to carry in barrels. Sal calls him Louis.

"Thanks Louis. When you're done there's another full one in the freezer for you to take out."

I thanked Sal and left. Sitting in my car and I use the transmitter to tell Morelli that I have found his flat nosed witness. "His name is Louis and he is using a freezer truck to cart around barrels. Remember there was a loud truck in the alley the night you got arrested? You need to get over here now. I don't know how long Louis is going to stick around." It was less than five minutes later that I had to speak again. "Sal has closed the shop and I just saw him drive by with Louis in the freezer truck. I'm going to follow. Hurry up!"


I followed the truck along the Highway hoping that he wouldn't notice me in my day glow colors car or that my car would stall. I followed the car past a service station and to what looks like a private marina I drove past, turned around when it dead ended and drove back to the service station where I called home hoping he would hear it via the bugs you put there. "Morelli I'm at a service station, the flat nose witness Louis is close and I would be able to see the truck if it went by. Hurry." Then I hung up to wait.

Ten minutes later Morelli pulled up beside me and I got into his car with Teeni. I directed him to the Marina where I saw the freezer truck enter. And there was the Truck. Parked with the back facing the lone boat in the marina. Sals Gal. It must belong to the butcher. The truck cab is empty so we decide to check the boat first. Guns drawn we are about to sneak onto the boat when I realised we were being stupid. I grabbed Morellis' arm and released Knight. I put my finger to my lips and telepathically asked Knight to check for anyone inside.

"Knight says that there is no one in the boat or truck. The only thing that could fool him would be a dark type Pokemon."

"Ok. Stay behind me. And for god's sake don't shoot me in the back!"

other than being coated in a strange white powder the boat is empty. Morelli tastes it. "Heroin," he says. "This must be a drop boat."

"What's a drop boat?" I was confused.

"A ship is searched when it comes into port but it isn't searched enroute. Ships will stop somewhere and offload any contraband into a smaller boat. That small boat is called a drop boat. The DEA couldn't find where all the Jamaican heroin was coming from. It must be from here."

"Let's check the Truck," I suggested.

Dead Cold

The back was locked but the cab wasn't. We got the keys out of the cab and went around the back. Opening the back of the truck revealed something neither of us wanted to see. The flat nosed witness was in there alright but the bullet hole in his forehead told me he wasn't going to be declaring Morellis innocence anytime soon. Damn. Sal's body was lying next to Flat Noses. he too had a bullet hole in his head but his body was curled around the body of a little Vanillish. The little ice pokemon was too covered in blood to see how it died, and I didnt want to know. I hugged Knight as I pointed my torch toward the back and the beam snagged on a couple of 44 gallon drums. "Any idea what's in there?" I was glad my voice wasnt shaking though I really wanted to throw up. Rex snuggled into my neck while Knight hugged my leg.

"Hopefully something helpful." He said as he climbed into the back of the truck, carefully avoiding the blood. "I'm going to need you to come closer, I can't see with your touch so far away and I can't hold a torch and get the lid off."

Knight teleported me so we were just inside the door. I wasn't going any closer. "If you need more light, put a pokemon on the other drum and give it the torch. Cause, this is as far as I go."

He sighed dramatically then let his Munchlax out onto the drum lid. The metal groaned. "Maybe your Munchlax wasn't the best choice. they are heavy and those drums don't look too crash hot." he ignored me of course and handed Mooch the flashlight, opened the lid and stared.

"Well! What is it?" I was getting frustrated and standing next to dead bodies was SO not my idea of a fun night. He slammed the lid closed and started pacing.

"It's Carmen, she must have been in Sals freezer the whole time. Shit! Now I'll never get my name cleared!" He continues to pace and mutter as Mooch the Munchlax jumps off the barrel and wanders over to Knight.

"We should call the police. the coroner will be able to put her death at the night you shot Ziggy and as you were in custody you obviously couldn't have hidden her body and we have Louis, yeah hees dead but-" He cuts me off.

"Listen, Stephanie, you're wasting your time. We both know you aren't capable of bringing me in by force. The only way you're going to collect your money is by my permission. You're just going to have to sit tight."

Fine, I thought, if Morelli thinks I'm useless then I'm just going to have to show him that just because I'm new at this doesn't mean that he's better than me. Knight, have Rex sneak up behind the Munchlax and when Morelli's back is turned have him use nuzzle to paralyze it. Use telekinesis to keep it upright, once it's paralyzed and when Morelli isn't looking, have Rex come to me and climb into my pocket. The next time Morelli turned back to the bodies I saw a little spark as Rex paralyzed Morellis munchlax.

"What was that?" Morelli said as he turned around.

"Just Rex looking at the temperature controls. Could the gun be in the barrel?" As he turned back to the barrel to shine his torch inside I carefully walked back to the freezer truck door.

"If it is in here it has to be under her body because I can't see it. Can I borrow your Kirlia to lift the body?"

"So now I'm useful again? Fine." Knight, change of plan, slowly walk over to Morelli and have Rex climb out of my pocket, get behind Morelli and nuzzle him. When he is paralyzed hypnotise him then hypnotize the Munchlax and find the Munchlax's Pokeball.

It was oh so satisfying to watch Morelli seize up and fall over. Unfortunately he landed on one of the bodies, but, what can you do? I pulled my cuffs out of my bag and handcuffed the unconscious Morelli to a railing inside a truck when Knight levitated him over to me. I put his Munchlax inside its Pokeball and frisked him. I put his gun and knife along with a Pokeball I pulled from his pocket and his Munchlax's Pokeball into his backpack. Then came the disgusting part. Looking for pokeballs on the bodies. Other than the dead Vanillish I knew there had to be at least a Machoke. Luckily Knight sensed my distress and levitated all of the balls out of the pockets and into Morellis bag. I got out of the truck, shut and locked the door behind me. Then promptly got my hand sanitiser out and coated my hands in it.

Delivery of 1 Morelli

Driving the freezer truck took a bit of getting used to and I had to stop by the service station to use the phone. "I've got Morelli. I'll be at the police station in about half an hour. I will need help to get Morelli inside, he is in a very bad mood." With that I hung up and drove back to Trenton.

Pulling into the police station there was a crowd of uniforms and a few plain clothes waiting. Knight and I got out of the cab of the freezer truck, Rex was back on my shoulder. With the engine off everyone can hear the banging and yelling from inside the back of the truck. I handed Gazarra the backpack I took from Morelli. "Here are his things, I didn't want him to have access to weapons or pokeballs while in the back there."

"I still can't believe you locked him in a freezer truck. How did you get him inside?"

"In the back of the truck with him is the missing witness and Carmen Sanchez, both dead. Also dead is the owner of the truck, also in the back. Their pokeballs are in the bag with Morellis. Unfortunately Morelli is innocent and I saw the Flat Nosed witness, whose name is Louis by the way, leave Sals butcher and followed the truck to the marina, but I didn't see who killed them. The service station about a mile down the road may have security cameras so you may be able to see the cars that went to the marina as the road dead ends. I called Morelli. During one of the times he got away from me, he had told me if I found the witness to clear his name he would let me walk him to the station."

"But how and why did you lock him in the back?"

"When he arrived to find Carmen's body and the witness dead he panicked. Said there was no one alive who could prove him innocent, so he wouldn't come in only to die in jail. I told him the missing gun may be under Carmen's body. When he went to look I stunned him and his Pokemon, cuffed him and shut the door."

Alphas Confession

I returned home with a capture receipt worth $10,000 and an urgent need to scrub off dead body cooties. I kicked my shoes off by the door, put my bag and my ball belt on the table, Rex jumped off my shoulder and went to his nest on the kitchen counter. I headed to my bedroom and opened the bathroom door. Then I immediately wished I hadn't. In my bathroom holding a gun pointed at me was Jimmy Alpha. I belatedly noticed that my bedroom window was broken. He must have stayed in the bedroom or the Pokemon in the tank would have attacked him. Surprisingly or maybe not so surprising he starts a rambling monologue, like just about every evil villain, in every movie I have seen.

"Training a champion boxer like Ramirez is every trainer's dream, you know? But Ramirez is becoming more and more erratic. He becomes more violent and less focused with every female pokemon and even a few trainers. I saw the writing on the wall. I knew that the time I could keep him productive was shrinking and then he would be bringing in no more money. so I diversified. I used my earnings from Ramirez to buy other businesses like Sals butcher shop and eventually the Jamaicans noticed and asked if I wanted to earn even more money. All I had to do was let them use the boat I had one to pay off Sals gambling debts. They were using it to smuggle in drugs. Ramirez attacked Carmen that's why she called Morelli she was willing to testify. But It wasn't only Ramirez she was going to talk about. I was in too deep. I wanted out but once in with the Jamaicans there is no way out." He was rambling now. "If Carmen had ratted to the police about the Jamaicans they would blame me. I couldn't have that so I sent Louis and Ziggy to shut her up. But Morelli arrived before they got rid of the body, Ziggy panicked and drew his gun on Morelli. It backfired and Morelli killed him. Louis took Ziggy's gun after Morelli shot him. He kept Carmen's body in a barrel in his freezer truck. He was going to dumpit out at sea but you kept asking questions. You kept finding out things that we wanted to keep secret. I was going to the marina to meet Sal and Louis, when I saw your car at the service station. So I killed them. Now I have a plan." He breathed a sigh of relief. "I'm going to let Ramirez do what he wants to you, then I am going to miraculously arrive in time to shoot him but I will be too late to save you. With you and Ramirez dead everyone will assume I'm just an innocent bystander but the Jamaicans will consider me compromised and back off leaving me to retire in peace." He smiled at me as if he wanted praise for his brilliant plan to have me raped to death by a Pokemon.

"Give me a minute. I feel sick." I said while moving to sit on the edge of the bed. "You are aware that my involvement ended once I took Morelli to the police station, right? If you hadn't showed up here no one would have known."

"Maybe, but then I would still have a crazy Pokemon and scary Jamaicans on my ass. This takes care of all of my problems." He shrugged carelessly. He walked over and put his hand on my shoulder. "It will all be over soon."

I shoved him and ran out to the kitchen to grab my bag. I had picked it up before I heard the crack of his gun and felt the hot burn near my hip. I managed to grab the gun in the bag as I fell over and pointed it at him, still in the bag, as he walked closer to me. I pulled the trigger right before I passed out.

Aftermath and Home from the Hospital

Ramirez never had a chance to get to me. Rex had let CHess, Nova and Knight out of their balls. Chess had grabbed Big Blues Pokeball, flew to the roof, breaking the already damaged window, and let him out. The old Salamence then sat on the roof like a gargoyle and knocked out Ramirez when he appeared. The police arrived to find Ramirez unconscious on the ground in the parking lot with Big Blue using him as a footrest. Knight had already taken me to be healed by the time the police broke down the door and found Alpha's body.

Normally an injured person would go to the hospital but Knight had never been to the hospital, so he took me to the place he knew could heal Pokemon, the Pokemon Centre. The bullet hadn't done any permanent damage, it just grazed through some unnecessary butt fat, so the Chancey's were able to heal me without needing to send me to the hospital. Apparently the Chancey's had taught both Nova and Knight heal pulse while they were fixing me. Ranger picking me up to take me home was a nice surprise. A bigger surprise was when he handed me an egg. It was mainly Orange with black stripes, if you looked closely there were streaks of cobalt blue in the black.

"This egg is beautiful but why are you handing it to me?"

"Long story short, Tank got my sister's shiny Midday Lycanroc pregnant. I don't know if it would be a Growlithe or a Rocruff. Either way, I have no use for it."

"I can't take this, surely you have someone closer to you to give it to." I was shocked.

"There were 6 eggs altogether, she gave me two and I already have someone in my mind for when the other one hatches. I don't need two. And I already know that you can care for an egg and a baby Pokemon fairly successfully if Teeni is anything to go by." He explained.

"Ok, if you're sure I would love to raise this egg. But you do know that two shiny Pokemon are more likely to breed more shiny Pokemon, you could sell this for a lot of money"

"I am aware, my sister will be selling the other four, but she specifically said I must give these two away to people I think would appreciate them. I do have one request though. When mine hatches can I borrow Knight? I need to explain to them that they will be going to a new home and to not get attached to me and I don't have a psychic." He asked.

"Sure. Anytime you need to talk to a Pokemon just ask. He loves feeling useful."


D Morellis Exoneration

Thanks to the microphones hidden in my apartment by Morelli, Alpha's confession was recorded which cleared Morelli's name. I still received the capture fee from Vinnie. So my rent is paid for the next two months, there is ample food in my cupboards, mostly tinned things in case things get bad again, I'll still be able to eat. I got a new second hand car which left enough that along with the savings I had put aside for Knights evolution and the $30,000 I got for selling the Goldeen and the Staryu, I finally had enough to buy a synthetic Shiny stone via one of Rangers contacts. They had recently been able to produce synthetic evolution stones in hope to minimize the need for mining them which had the potential to wreak havoc on the environment. Apparently the process is similar to producing synthetic diamonds.

So, with Knight now a Gallade and the Staryu and Goldeen sold, I didnt realise I had forgotten that permission for another six pokemon was on its way until I received my licence in the mail. Luckily with Nova and Knight with me and both Chess and Big Blue covering Ramirez none had actually counted how many Pokemon I had. So no fines for having too many. There was a knock on the door just as I was setting up Murrays water basin and putting Ghostbusters in. It was Morelli. he had bought Pizza and beer so I let him in and went back to my couch.

"Uhh, Why is the Feebas in a bowl?"

"Feebas only evolve when they feel beautiful while holding a prism scale* so we watch movies together and I brush him, and tell him how much I love him, and how beauty comes from within. Eventually he will feel beautiful enough that when I get a prism scale he will immediately evolve. And his name is Murray. Are you planning on sharing that pizza or did you bring it to tease me?"

He put the pizza on the table and went to get napkins from the kitchen. "I came to tell you that i've been cleared of all charges so, thank you."


"Are you going to continue working for Vinnie?

"Probably. I got $10000 for two weeks of work. Then again I did also get shot. Either way I'm out of the red and have a little bit more breathing room when it comes to finding a different job if I want."

"Well for what it's worth, I'm sorry for being an idiot teenager and writing that poem about you on the stadium wall." He said apologetically. I froze.

"The stadium wall? I only knew about the sub shop! You jerk! get out!"


* Arcanine riding percentage inspired by another fic but I can't remember the name of it. All I can remember is it was a Harry Potter crossover fic and had a shiny Growlithe.

* Herald - the little seahorse from Little Mermaid

* Not sure if DVD player or VCR for the time period, but Pokemon has better tech than us so i'm saying DVD. For those about to say Blu Ray. I've never owned one.

* Yes, Murray the Feebas was named after Ghostbusters. It just seemed the type of thing she would do and I couldn't think of a name for him.

* Yes I know that's not how Feebas evolve but it is a mesh of both ways and I don't like trade evolutions. It makes those of us who play alone have a nightmare of a time trying to evolve them. Luckily with Sword and Shield and Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl I have people to trade with now but it's still a nightmare of coordinating work and other responsibilities.

Stephs Pokemon Current Team

Chess - Corvisquire - Corviknight - Shiny - Male

Rex - Dedenne - Male

Knight - Kirlia - Gallade - Male - Mega Evolution Possible no stone

Nova - Riolu - Lucario - Shiny - Female - Mega Evolution Possible no stone

Teeni - Dratini - Female

Big Blue - Salamence - Male

B Team

Herald - Horsea - Male - Water

Murray - Feebas - Male - Water

Unnamed - orange egg with black stripes with hints of blue

For Sale

Unnamed - Magicarp x 2 for sale

Unnamed - Magikarp Shiny for sale

Unnamed - Goldeen for sale

Unnamed - Staryu for sale

Total 14 allowed 18 with 5 for sale

Total 12 allowed 18 with 3 for sale (After the Goldeen and Staryu)

Rangers Pokemon

Lester - Lucario - Male - Mega Evolution capable

Tank - Arcanine - Melanistic - Male

Puck - Klefki - Male

Need ideas on what Pokemon Ranger should have and their names

So far these are definites

Glitch - Zoroark - Female

Helps with the illusion that he pops up from nowhere

Unnamed - Garchomp - Male - Mega Evolution Possible no stone

possible nickname Hal as steph calles human version Halasaurus


Unnamed - Blaziken - Female- Starter - Mega Evolution Possible no stone

Morellis Pokemon

Mooch - Munchlax - Male

Unnamed - Houndoom - Female - Mega Evolution Possible no stone

Unnamed - Swampert - Male - Mega Evolution Possible no stone