• Published 2nd Dec 2013
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Adventures on the Friendship Express - GreenS21

Spin-off story to "Sonic Generations: Friendship is Timeless", taking place during the train ride to Canterlot.

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The Alpha and the Omega Pt. II - Crisis City (b)

It didn’t take long for them to run into Iblis’ offshoots, several lizards made of magma leaping out of the ground in front of them. Sonic got in front of everyone and ran forward, leaping at the one standing back from the other two and raising his feet to hit it in the face. It was sent flying backwards with a screech and exploded when it hit the ground while Sonic bounced back after the impact, doing a backflip. He landed on one knee, the two lizards at his sides turning their heads to look at him.

Lucario saw flames welling up in their mouths and hardened his gaze before saying, “ExtremeSpeed!” He shot through the air a moment later, grabbing Sonic and carrying him out of the path of their flames. One of them turned to look at the two while the other looked at the rest of the group. Before either they or anyone else could do anything, Pikachu leapt up and unleashed a Thunderbolt on the lizards, electrocuting them and causing them to break apart.

The Mouse Pokémon landed on a few seconds later and quickly noticed everyone except Lucario staring at him in surprise. Sonic, who was sitting down on the floor with Lucario’s paws on the front and back of his torso, asked, “Dude, did that just come out of you?”

Lucario answered, “Yes. That did come from Pikachu.” He pointed at his partner, “See his red cheeks? They’re natural for his kind. They contain electric sacs.” He looked down at Sonic, “As such, you don’t ever want to touch them, unless you’re a professional masseur, that is.”

The blue hedgehog smirked as he pointed up at the Aura Pokémon, “I see what you did there.”

Lucario looked confused as Pikachu and Yoshi snickered and Link and Spike laughed, Cadance cracking a smile as well. “What? What are you talking about? What did I…?” He stopped short as he considered what he had said and let out a groan as he ran his right paw down his face. “Really? I helped you and this is how you repay me?” he asked as he lowered his paw.

“Hey man, I do appreciate it, and whatever you did just now, I gotta admit that was pretty cool. I’m just trying to lighten things up. Relax,” Sonic replied as he started to stand up.

Cadance nodded, “Yes, don’t get upset, Lucario. Everyone’s okay now, so there’s nothing wrong with being happy about that, although we should probably get back to the reason we’re taking this detour.”

The jackal replied, “Right, the Pokémon.” He focused for a moment before saying, “Keep going straight.” He stood up and led the way, Sonic and Pikachu running close to his sides and everyone else following close behind. More lizards leapt out of the floor as they ran, a few Iblis Worms emerging along the sides as well. Most of them were easily dispatched by Lucario, Sonic, Pikachu, or Cadance, though Yoshi and Spike leapt into the fray as well, often defeating an enemy as Link was about to attack it, much to the boy’s chagrin.

After dealing with the last enemy, they found the Pokémon they had been looking for… which looked like a pink puffball with feet and a hair-like curl on its forehead in front of its ears. As soon as the Pokémon green eyes saw Lucario and Pikachu, it smiled and pirouetted before striking a pose on the tips of its feet with a “Jig!” It then spun around on one foot and puffed up as it looked at them, winking as it said, “Jigglypuff!”

Spike stared in confusion, as did everyone else aside from Lucario and Pikachu, who actually looked a little annoyed at the performance. “That’s the Pokémon we were looking for? What is it?” Spike asked as he stared.

“Is it a balloon or an eyeball?” Sonic added.

Lucario let out a sigh before saying, “This is a Jigglypuff. It’s a Balloon Pokémon that is rather talented at singing, and this one in particular is a frequent client of ours.” As he stepped forward, he thought, “All the time with this one, always showing up! It will just not go away!” As he stood in front of the Balloon Pokémon, which was still smiling up at him, he knelt down on one knee and reached for the badge on his bag as he said, “Yes, it’s nice to see you too. But now it’s time for you to go home.” He pulled the badge off and pointed it at the Jigglypuff, which suddenly shot upwards in a beam of yellow light, though it disappeared through the ceiling above rather than hitting it.

Cadance and the others looked surprised by this. “How did you do that?” the pink alicorn asked.

Lucario looked back over his shoulder and held up his badge as he explained, “This is one of our Exploration Team Badges. It contains a power that makes it possible to teleport Pokémon that have wandered into a Mystery Dungeon out. We can also make use of that power after completing a mission.” He looked down at the badge as he held it in his paw, “It’s good to know that it still works, considering the current situation.”

Link let out a gasp and Lucario turned to look at him, seeing the young boy standing near a hole in the wall to the group’s left and Yoshi walking over to him. The green dinosaur spoke, “Yoshi! Yoshi yoshi! (Look! Link found a way through this building!)”

Lucario closed his eyes and reached out with his Aura for several moments before opening them and saying, “I’m detecting more Pokémon on the other side! We have to help them too!”

Sonic nodded, “Then let’s get going!” Link and Yoshi led the way into the hole, Lucario, Sonic, Cadance, Spike, and Pikachu following them in.

Shortly after they disappeared into the wall, Suicune leapt into the hallway through one of the broken windows, having leapt all the way over to it from a building not too far away on this particular side and managing to avoid the shards of broken glass as she landed. She went over to the hole, having caught sight of one of her teammates disappearing into it, and examined it. “It’s a bit narrow, but it should be open enough overhead for me to enter. Sometimes this large form can be a bit cumbersome… No matter. I should be able to get through here with a little… coolness,” she thought. She inhaled air for a moment and then breathed it back out, the air coming out light blue as it was released as an Icy Wind. It didn’t create much ice, but it did form little ice patches on the sides inside the entrance that began to quickly melt due to the hot air. Suicune began to move through the hole, using the melting ice to wet her sides and squeeze through faster.

On the other side of the hole, the rest of the group was busy fighting more of the Iblis’ spawn. Lucario and Pikachu were taking charge of the situation, alternating between attacking the creatures up close and from a distance, Pikachu launching himself with Skull Bash and kicking Electro Balls with his tail while Lucario used his Aura to create a staff for Bone Rush and created and threw Aura Spheres. The others chipped in where they could as they made their way through the building, warping a Squirtle and an Eevee back to the Pokémon world before leaping over to the adjacent building.

Shortly after they got over to the other building, a horde of Iblis Worms emerged from the ground around the group along with a couple of lizards, everyone pressing their backs together as they faced the enemies. Lucario brought his paws together and channeled his Aura between them, slowly moving them apart to form his Bone Rush staff as he and Pikachu stared down an Iblis Worm that was flanked by a pair of lizards. The two lizards leapt at the duo, only to be sent flying when Lucario swung his staff twice and hit them both in the head. With the path clear, Pikachu charged up an Electro Ball on the tip of his tail and batted it with his tail at the Iblis Worm, knocking it clean out of the ground into the cracked wall behind it, the creature exploding when it hit.

Behind them, Sonic, Cadance, and Spike were facing down a lizard flanked by a pair of Iblis Worms. Spike was the first to move, managing to run under the lizard before it could unleash its flames at him and got underneath its head, swinging his own head up and knocking it back a bit when his spines and head hit it. He then leapt up and dealt an uppercut to it, knocking it on its back and making it explode, much to the baby dragon’s surprise. In his moment of surprise, the Iblis Worms reared up to attack him, only for Cadance and Sonic to come to his defense, Cadance flying up and blasting the one on Spike’s left with a beam of magic while Sonic took care of the other with a Homing Attack, the alicorn princess setting down on all fours while the hedgehog landed crouched on one knee.

Nearby, Yoshi leapt up as he ran towards an Iblis Worm, kicking his legs in the air for a Flutter Jump to help him get above the creature’s head, going “Hm~!” the whole time he was kicking his legs. Once he was sure he was above a part of the head that was more rock than magma, he stopped, spun over once, and suddenly dropped straight down bottom first on it in a Ground Pound attack. It did some damage to the creature and brought its head down on the floor, Yoshi leaping off of it with a cry due to some of its heat suddenly coming up underneath him. Link quickly ran over and stabbed his sword into the middle of its mouth, the Iblis Worm’s body shaking for a moment before it disintegrated in a burst of flames, causing Link to grunt in pain.

The boy recovered from the blast and turned to his right to see a lizard coming towards him. Link knelt down on his right knee and held his shield up as the creature breathed fire at him, his metal shield able to keep the brunt of the flames from reaching him. As soon as the flames stopped, he leapt at the creature with a yell, swinging his sword down over his head in a Jump Attack. He missed when the lizard leapt to his left, however, and only succeeded in getting a burn on his left hand. Lucario looked over and called, “Finish up with that last one! We have to get moving!” He and Pikachu then started moving over to a raised section of the floor that had a small pool of lava in it.

As he started to climb up, Sonic yelled, “Heads up! Flyers!” Lucario looked up at that and saw three of the fiery birds from earlier flying in from outside and flapping their wings as they flew in a straight formation above the lava pool. They soon swooped down and stopped when they saw Lucario, flapping their wings to stay in place above the lava. The Aura Pokémon stepped down and stared up at them, knowing they were going to attack but not sure what how they were going to do it.

Yoshi, having recovered from his tail almost being set on fire, decided he didn’t want to wait around to see what the creatures were going to do and turned to look at the last lizard as it and Link kept their distance from each other. He suddenly dashed towards the lizard, catching nearly everyone’s attention. Once he was close enough, he stopped and extended his tongue, the tip latching onto one of solid rocks sticking out of the lizard. He then quickly retracted it and swallowed the lizard down when he pulled it into his mouth, wincing a bit at the burning sensation in his stomach before a red-white egg with green spots on it popped out from behind him. Spike, Cadance, and Link were shocked by this, Spike uttering, “Did he just…?”

Not wasting a second, Yoshi took the egg in his right hand as he looked up at the bird creatures. “Mmmmmmm… Wah!” he hummed as he took aim and said as he threw the egg. He managed to throw it hard enough for it to reach the creatures and exploded with a fiery burst when it reached them, taking all three of the creatures with it.

Everyone was briefly struck silent by this, Lucario and Pikachu finally turning to look at Yoshi in surprise. The silence was broken when they all heard a familiar voice in their heads, ~So that’s what you meant by ending up in an egg.~ Everyone looked back and saw Suicune approaching them.

“Pika, Pikachu!” Pikachu said.

~I told you I would catch up to provide support, Pikachu,~ the Aurora Pokémon communicated as she came to a stop near the others. She looked over at Yoshi, ~That’s a very unusual ability you have. Your tongue is much like a Lickitung’s, but I’ve never seen that before.~ She then looked at Link, ~You are brave, young one, but I would advise you to be cautious around these creatures. Try to attack them from a distance if you can.~

A cry from up ahead caught everyone’s attention, causing them all to look forward again. “All right, let’s get moving,” Lucario said as he and Pikachu began to climb up on the raised section of the floor again. Everyone began to move after the two save for Link, who glanced down at his sword for a moment before glancing down at the floor as he considered Suicune’s words.

On the other side of the lava pit, Pikachu and Lucario used their badges to send an Oshawott, a Scizor, and a Togepi back to their world. While they were doing this, Suicune used Hydro Pump to cool the lava in the pit since there wasn’t enough room on the raised section of the floor for her to stand on and be able to get a good jump over to the other side. She hopped down onto the solidified rock while her teammates put their badges away and Sonic and the others sans Link climbed up onto the raised section. Once Sonic was on top, he asked, “Are there any more left, Lucario?”

The Aura Pokémon closed his eyes and focused for a several seconds before looking to his right out the large hole that the flying creatures had flown in through. There were two buildings that were still standing but were tilted next to the building they were in, a third that was standing up straight just past them. “There’s just a few left in the next building. Once we help them, we can resume the search for Groudon,” he replied.

Everyone looked towards the building in question, noting that it was pretty far away from where they were. “How are we going to get over there? There’s no way to enter those other two buildings up here,” Spike said.

~If our fourth member were here, we could easily create a bridge so that we could all cross,~ Suicune grumbled.

Sonic looked at the Aurora Pokémon, “How?”

Suicune answered, ~I could easily hit the side of that building with my Hydro Pump. While I would be doing that, he could use his Psychic powers to suspend the water in midair and I could freeze it. It wouldn’t last long, especially in this location, but it would be satisfactory enough for us all to reach that building.~

Cadance suggested, “I could use my magic to grasp and hold the water up, Suicune.”

Suicune replied, ~I have seen what your magic is capable of, Princess Cadance, but it is a high pressure stream. The initial grasp may be difficult, even for your magic.~

Before Cadance could reply, Link let out a shout and everyone turned to look at him. They saw him standing on the raised section of the floor with a wooden bow in his right hand, his left hand pulling back its string slightly as well as holding an arrow in place. “Hey Link, that’s a pretty cool bow. What’s up?” Sonic asked. The boy responded by looking to the first building over and pointing his bow at it. As he pulled the arrow back all the way, a blue, icy aura formed around the arrowhead that went down the projectile partway. Before anyone could ask, he released the arrow and it shot towards a flame on the side of the building, creating a large block of ice when it hit that snuffed out the flame. “Whoa! What are those, ice arrows?” Sonic questioned, surprised like the rest of them. Link nodded with a grunt.

Suicune looked at him, ~I believe I know what you are thinking, child. Come over here with me.~ Link leapt down onto the solidified lava and followed Suicune as she climbed up next to her teammates, looking over at the next building to make sure she had a straight shot at it.

As they both got into position for their respective shots, Spike whispered to Cadance, Yoshi, and Sonic, “Where did he get that?” Upon noticing that Link had gotten another arrow for his bow, he added, “And those arrows?” The three looked at each other for a moment before they all gave the baby dragon a shrug.

Suicune nodded at Link, the boy nodding back in reply, and turned to look at the building again. She then took a deep breath and unleashed Hydro Pump with as much force as she could. The cascade of water lost force as it got farther away from her, but as she predicted, it managed to reach the building, hitting just a bit below the opening in the side. While she kept the water flowing, Link readied his bow, aiming high before he let the arrow go. The ice-coated projectile flew in an arch and hit the spot where Suicune’s Hydro Pump was hitting.

Almost immediately, the water began to freeze, the ice magic around the arrow spreading out from it and beginning to move back towards Suicune. Lucario kept a careful on the spreading ice, observing how fast the water was freezing. When the ice had moved about halfway up, he called, “That’s enough, Suicune!” The Aurora Pokémon stopped spraying water at that, the last drops leaving her mouth just moments before they froze in front of her. Lucario grabbed the newly frozen water with both paws and set it down on the floor.

While he was making sure the water stayed where it was, Sonic looked over at Link and said, “That’s some pretty COOL magic you got there, Link. Pun totally intended.” Link smiled in reply.

Lucario let go of the frozen water and looked at the others, “I don’t know how long it will last, but it looks like we have a pretty solid bridge to use for the time being."

Link suddenly let out a gasp and was about to say something, but Spike spoke up first, “Look!” Everyone looked towards the other side of the ice bridge and saw the Charizard from earlier hovering near the end of it, looking at it with an unreadable expression. It glanced in the group’s direction for a moment before looking back at the bridge, its wings flapping harder.

“I don’t like the way he’s looking at the bridge!” Lucario growled.

~Neither do I,~ Suicune agreed. She looked at the others and said, ~Get to the other side, quickly! We’ll try to ward him off!~ With that, she took a running leap towards the first building, managing to press her paws against the side and jump to the adjacent building, running up the side of it.

While she tried to find a good position, Lucario looked at the first building and said, “ExtremeSpeed!” He suddenly shot towards the edge and made a leap of his own, managing to reach the first building and climbing up the side of it, alternating between using Metal Claw to get a grip and jumping up from spots where he could put his paws down.

When he initially jumped, Cadance had spread her wings and flew out, saying, “Lucario!” She stopped not far from the others when she saw that he had reached the building and was able to climb it on his own.

Pikachu called, “Pikachu!”

Sonic looked over at the yellow mouse, “He looks like he’ll be okay. We’d better get across while we still have a chance.”

Spike clambered up next to the frozen water cascade and looked at it, noticing that the way it was sitting meant it was angled slightly downwards. “Hey, I’ve got an idea!” he said. He took a running start and leap onto it facing sideways, beginning to slide down it. He initially had a little difficulty keeping his balance, but he quickly got over it. As he slid, he noticed a few uneven and narrow spots ahead, but otherwise it was a straight shot to the next building. He called to the others, “This is even better than running on the ice! We can just slide to the next building!” As he leapt over a rise in the ice, he noticed a wet feeling underneath him and knew it was water under his claws. “Hey, you guys had better hurry! I think it’s starting to melt!” he yelled from partway down.

Sonic looked at Yoshi and Link and said, “Come on, let’s go!” They nodded, Link picking up Pikachu in his hands before sliding down the ice like Spike, having noticed that the mouse seemed a bit hesitant at following Spike’s lead. Sonic was next followed by Yoshi, all of them noticing that Lucario was throwing Aura Spheres and Suicune was shooting water at the Charizard, which was easily dodging their attacks and unleashing flames from its mouth at them.

As Spike made it to the end of the ice bridge, Cadance swooped by and used her magic to pick him up, lifting him up to the hole in the side of the building, landing next to him as she placed him on the floor. They looked at each other for a moment before looking back out, noticing Link and Pikachu coming next with Sonic and Yoshi not too far behind. Spike and Cadance noticed that Suicune and Lucario were still keeping Charizard distracted before looking down at the ice bridge again, both of them realizing that Link and Pikachu seemingly had no way to get up to their level.

Cadance was about to use her magic to grab them when Link leapt up off the ice just enough to turn himself around, holding Pikachu close to him with his left hand while he reached his right hand into a pouch on his waist. He pulled out an odd, gold-colored tool with a hook on the end a moment later, pointing it up towards the hole, more specifically at one of the exposed girders near Spike and Cadance. After taking a moment to adjust his aim, he pressed a button on the handle, causing the hook to shoot out of the tool with a *BOING*. The chain that the hook was attached to rattled as it extended, the hook catching on the side of the girder and causing the chain to pull Link and Pikachu up towards it.

While Pikachu leapt down onto the floor and Link pulled the hook free, Suicune paused for a moment as she looked down at the green-clad boy, thinking, “I don’t know much about humans, but that child is clearly no ordinary human. All these unusual tools he possesses, and whatever strange power that I can sense from within him… I can’t shake this feeling that there is a greater force at work around him.

Unfortunately, her momentary distraction, combined with the rattling sound that Link’s spring-loaded tool had made just now, caused Charizard to turn its attention back to the ice bridge, its red-tinted eyes glaring down at it. Sonic noticed this and he looked back at Yoshi, gesturing at Charizard with his head. Though no words were spoken, Yoshi got what Sonic was getting at and nodded, prompting Sonic to jump up higher than Link had, allowing Yoshi to get underneath him so he landed on the green dinosaur’s saddle.

Before Charizard could attempt to melt the frozen cascade, Sonic called, “Hey, you!” His voice caught the orange dragon’s attention and it looked to see Yoshi jump up as Sonic, curled into a ball, leapt into his hands. He threw the blue hedgehog as hard as he could at Charizard, which brought its wings in front of itself to protect itself from being hit and knock Sonic backwards. Yoshi extended his tongue and pulled the blue hedgehog into his mouth, spitting him out immediately and leaving Charizard with no time to react as Sonic crashed into its face and kept going towards the building. He managed to land on a solid piece of floor a little ahead of Spike, Link, Pikachu, and Cadance while Charizard shook off the disorientation and Yoshi landed back on the ice bridge, which shuddered under his weight. The orange dragon soon turned its head to glare at Sonic as he called, “Come on, let’s see what you can do!” Charizard flew after him at that as he ran on ahead, giving Yoshi plenty of time to Flutter Jump up to safety, with a little help from Cadance.

Yoshi took off running to catch up with Sonic immediately after landing, Lucario and Suicune joining the others inside the building and doing the same with Pikachu following, leaving Link, Cadance, and Spike alone for the moment. “Come on, we’d better go help too,” Cadance said, Spike and Link nodding in response.

Before they could start moving, Spike looked back at the ice bridge for a moment and his eyes widened in surprise when he saw several lizards making their way down it! “Look! More of those lizards!” he cried, Link and Cadance seeing them as soon as they did look.

“We can probably handle them, but we should still stop them before they get here!” Cadance said. She and Spike both heard Link grunt and turned to see he had pulled out his bow again, though this time when he readied an arrow, a flaming red aura surrounded it instead of the cool blue aura it had before. Once again, he fired in an arch, the arrow hitting the side of the building they had come from after going through part of the ice bridge, the ice melting back into water quicker due to the Fire Arrow. Spike noticed that the lizards began scrambling to get to the other side of the bridge faster at this and quickly stuck his head out over the edge, breathing green flames down at the part of the cascade that was frozen to the side of the building, causing the whole thing to fall down with the lizards still on it seconds later. The three watched it fall for a moment before turning and hurrying to catch up with the others.

Rounding a corner, they found the others hiding behind large slabs of stone to shield themselves from Charizard’s flames. Sonic and Yoshi were huddled together with a Squirtle and a Charmander next to a spot where the floor dropped off, a stream of lava flowing towards the other side of the building below, while Team Defenders, along with an Ivysaur and a Chikorita, were to their right. There wasn’t anything else that could be used as adequate cover in the vicinity and, as demonstrated when Pikachu stepped out during a break in the Charizard’s flames to try hitting it with a Thunderbolt, the dragon had little difficulty flying out of the way of their attacks with its powerful wings.

Upon seeing Spike, Cadance, and Link, Lucario quickly stepped out of cover and launched a quick Aura Sphere at the Charizard to distract it, the small orb managing to scrape along the side of its face. The attack angered the dragon, however, and it turned its head to look at the Aura Pokémon. Seeing this, he quickly waved the trio over, all of them managing to join Team Defenders before the Charizard unleashed a yellow-colored orb that exploded when it hit the floor. “What was that?” Cadance asked as she, Link, and Spike caught their breaths.

“That was Dragon Rage. It’s a Dragon Type move,” Lucario said.

“Well, you got the rage part right! What’s this guy so angry about?” Spike asked.

Lucario gestured his head in the Charizard’s direction as he said, “Those red eyes of his are not normal. The red and his anger are both being caused by something else, something beyond his control.” His expression hardened slightly, “We’ve seen it plenty of times before, usually when something is happening in our world.”

Cadance asked, “Really? So your world has seen a number of crises that can cause Pokémon to act like this, not just the one your team has dealt with?”

Suicune communicated, ~Despair overpowering hope to empower darkness, time and space being disturbed, natural disasters due to a falling star, the Tree of Life being targeted by our own darkness… yes, there have been a number of close calls that have affected the balance of things, and our closeness to nature has left us somewhat susceptible to such changes.~

Sonic pressed his back up against the slab while holding onto the Squirtle and looked over at Suicune, asking, “Speaking of which, is there anything that this guy is susceptible to that could help us out here?”

Lucario spoke up, “That flame on Charizard’s tail… Just like with Charmander and Charmeleon, it has to keep it lit at all times. We might be able to force it to land if we can hit it.”

Suicune grunted, ~That’s not going to be easy from this vantage point, Lucario. Every time I stick my head out, it immediately targets me, so I don’t have time to use my Hydro Pump. If we could find a way to get it without exposing ourselves, that would be better.~ A moment later, everyone heard the sound of musical notes being played and turned to look at Link. The boy was sitting with his back up against the stone slab, eyes closed as he held the mouthpiece of a blue ocarina to his lips. Everyone continued to look at him, wondering what he was up to now.

Suddenly, there was a clap of lightning outside and they all began to hear rain falling, some of the rain water coming down through the building’s damaged structure. While Yoshi tried to keep the drops from landing on the Charmander’s tail flame, Spike looked over at Link as he lowered his ocarina and asked, “Did you do that?”

Before Link could answer, they all heard Charizard groaning loudly. Peering out, they saw him holding his claws on the sides of his head, shaking it even as his wings held him up. “I don’t know if it’s the song or the rain, but there’s something different about this guy now,” Sonic said.

Suicune looked out at the falling rain and then at the Charizard’s tail flame, noticing steam beginning to rise off of it. ~Perhaps I can lengthen the duration of this downpour and make it stronger,~ she mused aloud. She stepped back from the slab and spread her legs out, standing in a wide stance. A second later, she let out a loud “CUUUUUUU!” as a blue light surrounded her body. It didn’t take long afterwards for the others to notice that the rain was falling even heavier now.

With the rain falling so heavily, steam was really starting to rise off of the Charizard’s tail. The orange dragon, still feeling disoriented from the song Link had played, was forced to come in for a landing, its tail flame not as big as it was before. While it was shaking its head, Lucario leapt out from behind cover and said, “Come on! We need to calm him down before he hurts himself further!”

Suicune and Pikachu leapt out at his sides at that, the former saying to the others, ~Keep the other Pokémon safe! We’ll send them back once Charizard has calmed down somewhat!~

Yoshi suddenly let out a cry, the Charmander he’d been huddled over to protect its tail flame suddenly dashing out from underneath him and out into the open before he could grab it. It ran towards the Charizard, the larger Pokémon’s still-red eyes opening before it could get to him and letting out a roar at the Charmander, causing it to stop. Yellow energy began to build up in its mouth, causing Yoshi to leap on top of the stone slab and extend his tongue, the tip of it latching onto the back of the Charmander’s head. He started to pull the small lizard back, but Charizard finished charging up another Dragon Rage and unleashed it in their direction. Both Sonic and Yoshi tried to get out of the way, but they were still knocked for a loop when the attack hit the stone slab, destroying it and sending stone fragments flying everywhere.

As Sonic recovered from the rough landing, still holding the Squirtle in his arms, he looked up and realized that the Charmander was no longer on the end of Yoshi’s tongue! His eyes moved to the left and saw the fire lizard with its back against one of the flying stone fragments, which landed in the lava stream below. He wasn’t the only one who had noticed this, as Spike suddenly ran past him crying “Hang on!” He jumped over the edge into the lava stream, landing head first and sinking beneath it. Sonic pulled himself over to the edge with Squirtle and looked to see the baby dragon resurface, immediately swimming after the Charmander.

Cadance called to Sonic, catching his attention, “Dragons can touch lava safely, Sonic! Spike will be fine!”

Sonic called back, “Gotcha, Cadance!” Turning his head to look towards where the lava was flowing, he said, “But I’m thinking there’s a bigger problem right now.”

Cadance looked and saw the opening in the side of the building, realizing the lava was flowing straight towards it. “Oh no…” she murmured.

Yoshi put his hands on the sides of his head, “Wah!”

Sonic and Link looked out and noticed that Team Defenders was fighting the enraged Charizard, the orange dragon’s attention focused on the Exploration Team. “Looks like they’re keeping dragon tail busy,” Sonic noted. He looked at the others, “Come on, let’s go help them!” The others nodded, all of them instructing the stranded Pokémon to stay put before dashing out of cover to go help.

Spike, meanwhile, managed to catch up to the stone fragment and grabbed onto it with his claws, saying to the scared Charmander, “Hey, calm down. I’m here to help you.”

Cadance called, “Spike!” The baby dragon and Charmander looked to see her, Sonic, Yoshi, and Link running on the floor above and along the stream. “You two have to get out of there! You’re going to go over soon!” Sonic urged.

Spike and the Charmander looked ahead and saw the hole they were flowing towards, both of them letting out a gasp. The Charmander leapt onto Spike’s back as he turned himself over and began trying to swim against the current as he cried, “It’s getting faster! I don’t know if I can get away!”

As they were getting to the end of the solid ground, Sonic looked over at Link and asked, “Link, you got anything?” The boy reached into his pouch and pulled out his Hero’s Bow as they all came to a stop, readying an Ice Arrow and shooting it so it hit right in front of the opening, directly in Spike’s path. The arrow’s effects caused the part of the lava that it hit to become solid, but it had ended up on top of the lava and was looking ready to be pushed along.

Just as Link was getting ready to nock another arrow, they all heard a whooshing sound. Suddenly, three large glowing shurikens that looked like they were made of water shot over Spike and the Charmander’s heads, two landing on the sides of the piece of lava that had solidified and the third in front of it, all of them sinking into the lava slightly before they broke apart, the water that they were made of causing the lava to solidify. They supported the piece that Link had created, forming a small dam that blocked part of the opening. Spike and the Charmander reached it shortly afterwards, the latter holding tightly onto the top of Spike’s head as he used his claws to grab onto the top of it.

Despite being surprised at what had happened, Link fired another Ice Arrow at the lava near Spike, cooling another chunk of solid rock on top of it. Seeing this, Cadance called, “Spike, get on top of that!” Spike did as he was told, swimming over to the rock and climbing on top of it. Once he was on top, Cadance used her magic to lift it up and move it over to solid ground, Spike and the Charmander getting off once they were there. The improvised dam broke away and went down the side of the building shortly afterwards.

The Charmander hugged Spike gratefully, the others coming over as he groaned, “Aw, come on. It’s all right.” They all looked up when they heard Team Defenders and Charizard approaching, the Charizard’s eyes no longer red. The Charmander let go of Spike and ran towards the Charizard, the orange dragon scooping up the Lizard Pokémon and hugging it back.

Sonic asked, “Uh, we good now?”

Suicune nodded, ~Yes, there’s nothing to worry about. After we defeated Charizard, he returned to normal when he got up. He’s grateful to us for helping him as well as saving his child.~

Cadance asked, “Child? So that’s…”

Lucario nodded, “Right. He’s also offered to help us to repay us for our help.” He turned to the Charmander and said, “You sit tight back at the Wigglytuff Guild, little guy. Your dad’s going to help us for a little while, but we’ll send him right along once we’re done here.” The Charmander was silent for a moment before nodding in reply, Lucario touching him with his badge afterwards and teleporting him back to the Pokémon world.

“Has everyone else been sent back too?” Cadance asked.

Pikachu nodded, “Pika!”

Spike shrugged, “So now we can get back to what we were doing before.” He looked at Link and noticed the boy was rubbing the side of his neck with his left hand. “Hey Link, you okay?” Spike asked, Sonic, Cadance, Yoshi, and Pikachu looking at him as well.

Link looked up, “Ah…”

Lucario suddenly spoke, “Wait!” Everyone looked at him and realized he was reaching out with his Aura again. “I’m sensing something near here. Something large.” He opened his eyes a moment later and pointed forward, “We have to go that way.”

Suicune spoke, ~Let’s hurry.~ The two began moving, Pikachu climbing up onto Lucario’s shoulder while Charizard spread his wings and flew after them. The others glanced at each other for a moment before hurrying after them, Link rubbing his neck one more time as he ran. As they ran, none of them noticed a flash of light coming from the outside of the building, a mostly blue figure clinging to the side of it, supported by its hands and feet.

A short while later, the group was walking down a road that went up and down, winding its way around a number of destroyed buildings. As they were walking out of a destroyed tunnel, Lucario was saying, “That was very lucky, Spike. It’s a good thing that lava stopped you two from going over the edge.”

Spike nodded, walking next to Sonic and Cadance, “Yeah, I know. Good thing Suicune found a chance to throw those water stars while you guys were fighting.”

Suicune communicated, ~Shurikens. I believe the move you’re referring to is Water Shuriken, and I do not know that move.”

Sonic shrugged, “Well, if it wasn’t you, then who did it? Did we miss somebody?”

Lucario held a paw to his chin, “I didn’t sense anyone near us… However…” He was stopped short when Pikachu suddenly leapt ahead of the group and got down on all fours, glaring to the group’s left. “Pikachu?” Lucario asked, also noticing that Charizard was looking in the same direction and appeared to be agitated as well. He closed his eyes and focusing his Aura, opening them a moment later and saying, “That presence I sensed… It’s below us.”

Suicune nodded, ~I felt it too.~ Everyone turned and walked over to the side of the road, peering over the side of the stone guardrails at the lava below. They could see fire rising up from the lava, accompanied by some sort of light that appeared to be tinged red due to the rising flames. As they stared, something began to rise out of the lava, a massive golem that appeared to be made of rock and magma. It continued to rise until it was just above the road that the group was on, letting out a roar and flames from its mouth as it held out its arms, its red glowing eyes soon turning to look back at the group.

“What is THAT?!” Cadance exclaimed, both her and Yoshi backing away slightly.

“I think that’s Iblis!” Spike said.

“Either that or Groudon looks remarkably similar to it,” Sonic added.

Suicune shook her head, ~That is definitely not Groudon. Groudon looks nothing like that.~

Lucario opened his eyes and said, “Its Aura… That creature is full of nothing but anger and hatred. It must be stopped before we can continue our search.”

Sonic replied, “Right. Aim for his head. Seems like that’s where it was weakest the last time.” Iblis let out a growl before anyone could move, causing more of its worm, lizard, and bird spawn to appear out of thin air around the group. As they all turned around to look at the new arrivals behind them, Sonic grunted, “Great. He’s called in the cavalry.”

Yoshi groaned and clutched his stomach as it let out a rumble. “Mmm… Yoshi… (Mmm… I’m hungry…)” he groaned. He looked up as one of the lizards began to approach him and his eyes lit up, “Hmm!” He extended his tongue, the tip latching onto one of the creature’s rocks and pulling it into his mouth. After swallowing it and depositing it as an egg, he glanced up as he said, “Hmm… Hmph. (Hmm… Not so good.)” He then whirled around and threw the egg into Iblis’ face, the creature letting out a grunt as the egg exploded. Yoshi then turned and decided to sample one of the worms, turning it into an egg as well. “Mmm, yoshi! (Mmm, that tastes better!)” he said.

As the others watched, Spike commented, “Wow, and here I thought Pinkie Pie was the only one who could eat things whole.” He then cheered, “Chow down, Yoshi!”

After Yoshi threw the egg he had at Iblis and turned back to the spawn, Sonic called, “Dig in, dino buddy! It’s an Iblis smorgasbord, and he’s getting eggs in his face for it!” Seeing that Yoshi had Iblis’ minions well under control, the others, save for Link and Spike, turned and started throwing their own attacks at it, Charizard making use of his wings and strength to ball up a lizard or worm and fly up to Iblis’ face before using Rock Smash. Link and Spike, meanwhile, stayed close to Yoshi, Link having his sword and shield out while Spike did his best to aid them both against any back and side attacks.

Suicune’s Water Type attacks were, unsurprisingly, the most effective against Iblis, easily chipping away at the monster and making the rocks stuck to him fall off. Unfortunately, the heat was starting to get to her now. After leaping over fire spewed by Iblis, she retaliated with a Hydro Pump, though everyone noticed it looked weaker than the other times she had used it and she was panting when she stopped. Lucario and Pikachu hurried over to her, Lucario asking, “Suicune, are you all right?”

The Aurora Pokémon glanced at him and replied, ~I’m fine, Lucario. I’ve just… overexerted myself a bit.~

She looked down at Pikachu when he said, “Pikachu pika, pika pi! Chu pika Pikachu!”

Suicune replied, ~I’m aware of the heat’s effects, Pikachu, but we have to stop that thing.~

Lucario spoke, “Still, you’d better take it easy on the Water Type moves for a little bit. You don’t want to use up all of your water and exhaust yourself further.”

Sonic called, “Yeah, especially right now. Heads up!” The three Pokémon looked to see that Iblis had raised its right arm, the monster swinging it down at everyone as they scrambled to get away. They all managed to avoid the attack, but it crashed right through the road and made a new hole, forcing them to keep running as more of the road collapsed behind them. While they were running, Iblis began to step back, moving back closer to the center of the lava encircled by the road.

Once they were all safely away from further road collapse, Cadance was the first to notice Iblis’ new position, saying to the others, “Iblis has moved too far away! We can’t attack him conventionally now!”

Suicune grunted, ~Perhaps another Rain Dance…~

Lucario argued, “What good will that do? Rain may have worked earlier, but it’s not going to draw him closer! We need to come up with something else!”

Sonic looked at Link and Yoshi and noticed that, while they were turned in Iblis’ direction, they were looking up at the sky. He looked and quickly saw what had caught their attention. “Hey, check out the clouds,” he said. Everyone else looked at that and saw that the gray clouds overhead seemed to be parting, rays of sunlight beginning to break through.

“The cloud cover is clearing. But why?” Cadance wondered.

“Is it something Iblis is doing?” Spike asked.

Lucario spoke after a moment, “No… This must be Drought.”

Sonic looked at him and asked, “Drought? Does that mean…?”

Suicune nodded, ~I sense it. Groudon approaches.~

Shortly afterwards, Iblis turned slightly to the left, looking down as a red head with black and yellow eyes began to emerge from the lava, its sharp teeth being the next detail to emerge. It continued to raise itself out of the lava, revealing its gray-colored underbelly and red backside, black lines running across its arms and the rest of its body. Its arms ended in four sharp, white claws, its backside ended with a tail that curled up somewhat at the end, it had what looked like spikes protruding from its sides under and above its arms and on the sides of its face, and it had four crests on the top of its head. When it had emerged completely, its feet were the only part of it that was still underneath the lava, the creature being a little shorter than Iblis was. It stared at Iblis for a moment before unleashing a loud “GRRRROOOOOOARRRRR!”

Once everyone’s ears had stopped ringing from the roar, Spike asked, “That’s Groudon?!”

Lucario nodded, “That’s him all right. The creator of dry land, the bringer of harsh sunlight.”

Sonic commented, “He looks like a regular red carpet with teeth.”

Suicune replied, ~Not the best way to put it that I’ve heard, but that will do.~ She looked back at Iblis and Groudon as the former let out a roar of its own and said, ~Let them fight.~

Despite Groudon not being the same size as Iblis, he proved to be more agile than the lava monster, able to step around its punch and slash attempts before retaliating with a Slash attack of his own. The scene called the memory of watching Chip square off against Dark Gaia with the Gaia Colossus to Sonic’s mind.

After a short while, Groudon ducked to avoid Iblis’ flame breath before charging forward as he raised himself up, crashing into Iblis’ chest and forcing the monster back a ways. As Iblis attempted to recover and get back into the fight, Groudon managed to turn itself around and swing its tail high enough to strike Iblis just below its chest, knocking it back into one of the buildings and causing it to collapse around Iblis. Seeing no movement, Groudon began to move closer to get a closer look.

Suddenly, Iblis recovered from the impact and charged at Groudon, placing its hands on the Continent Pokémon’s sides and pushing him back as it continue to charge. Groudon planted his feet and tried to stop the charge, but Iblis continued to push him backwards, not stopping until Groudon’s back collided with one of the buildings near the group’s location. Groudon took the full brunt of this sudden attack, some pieces of the building raining down on him while the rest fell backwards destroying part of the road ahead of the group.

Iblis didn’t stop there, however, as it reached for another building with its right hand while still holding Groudon with its left. It grabbed the upper part of the building and pulled it up, separating it from the rest of the building and beginning to bring it up over its head. “It’s going to attack Groudon with that building if we don’t help him!” Lucario realized.

~My Hydro Pump’s power hasn’t recovered yet,~ Suicune grunted. Link looked at her for a moment before looking to the right at what was left of the building that Groudon’s back was pressed up against. Seeing an opportunity, he began to move towards the building while reaching into his pouch with his right hand.

Sonic quickly noticed Link’s movements and called, “Link, what are you doing?” Everyone looked in the boy’s direction as he pulled out a pair of rabbit ears and put them on his head, and suddenly he started running faster than ever. It didn’t take him long to reach the remains of the building and duck into it, removing the rabbit ears with his left hand while reaching into his pouch again. The others were planning to go after him when he ducked inside, but a few moments later, they heard him let out a scream of agony.

A moment later, someone that looked like Link but was very clearly an adult began climbing and leaping up Groudon’s back. The human had empty white eyes, red and blue markings on his face, a large sword that had a blade that looked like a double helix strapped on his back, and wore silver-gray clothes, gauntlets, and black tights. “Is that Link?” Sonic asked, totally shocked by the change.

“How did he…? What?!” Cadance stammered, equally shocked. The others seemed surprised by the change that had overtaken the boy as well.

“What is he doing?” Lucario asked, trying to keep his surprise under control.

Iblis finished raising the building over its head by the time Link reach Groudon’s head, the monster using both hands to hold it up. Link quickly dashed to the end of Groudon’s head and came to a stop, pulling his sword off of his back with his left hand before taking it in both hands and holding it straight up above his head. While holding it, it began to gather power, the power surrounding the blade as a shaft of light. As Iblis started to bring the building down, Link let out a loud grunt as he swung his sword down vertically. The beam of light went through the building and scraped along the top of Iblis’ head before it vanished at the end of his swing. A second later, the building was sliced in two and Iblis let out a cry of pain as it backed away, its hands clutching the spot where the beam of light had hit.

“WHOA! Did you see that?! That was awesome!” Spike cried.

“It was, Spike… It was…” Cadance breathed, unable to gather her thoughts. A moment later, Link returned to normal as he pulled a mask off of his face, his regular sword and shield on his back once again. Groudon let out a growl, indicating it was ready to resume the fight, so Charizard let out a grunt as he flapped his wings and flew up close to Groudon’s head, allowing Link to jump onto his back. Once the boy was on, Charizard flew back to the others while Groudon began to stomp towards Iblis, which was still clutching its head in pain.

Iblis looked up when it heard Groudon approaching. It lowered its arms and was about to start moving forward when the Continent Pokémon held his arms up and out at his sides, his body beginning to glow red as he let out a roar. Suddenly, spears of land shot up out of the lava around Iblis, the tips stabbing into its legs and remaining there. As it began struggling to free itself of the land blades, Groudon closed the gap between them, reaching forward and stabbing both sets of claws into Iblis’ midsection. Iblis grabbed them and tried to pull them out, but Groudon held strong, slowly moving his hands away from each other as he prepared to finish this fight.

Thanks to the now strong sunlight coming down, Groudon was easily able to gather solar energy, the lines all over his body absorbing the light into his body. In a matter of seconds, he had charged up completely and opened his mouth, firing a beam of sunlight out of it at the opening created between his two hands, the solar energy beginning to spread across the rest of the monster’s body. Iblis continued to try to resist, but it didn’t matter; after several seconds, its struggles died down as the creature exploded in a blast of fire and lava, Groudon’s arms dropping to his sides as he let out a triumphant roar.

The group had shielded themselves when Iblis exploded, not sure how far the lava it was made up of would be thrown, but they were all thankful when they didn’t feel anything suddenly hot touch them. As they looked at Groudon, Sonic commented, “Well, Groudon sure sent Iblis out with a bang, huh?”

Lucario nodded, “A fitting end. There’s no telling how long it will take for this world to be restored, but at least the ones living here won’t have to live in fear of that Iblis.”

Yoshi looked at Link and said, “Yoshi yoshi! Yoshi yosh yoshi! (You did great, Link! You really helped Groudon defeat that thing!)”

Link looked confused, “Uh…”

Sonic answered, “He says you did a great job back there, Link.”

Link nodded, “Ah.” He looked down at the Fierce Deity’s Mask in his hands for a moment before putting it away.

Suicune watched as he did this, thinking to herself, “That mask is not the source of the power I sense in that boy, but it clearly contains some sort of power if it is able to change him so greatly. I wonder how it came to be in his possession…” Her thoughts were interrupted when Groudon let out a low growl.

Everyone looked at him to see that he was looking to his right and, judging from his right eye, he was glaring. He began to walk in that direction a moment later, his attention focused on whatever had caught his attention. “Groudon, wait! Stop!” Lucario yelled as loud as he could, but the Continent Pokémon paid him no heed, crashing through part of the road as he continued walking.

“Where’s he going?” Spike asked.

Cadance looked at Suicune, “Has something gotten into him?”

The Aurora Pokémon replied, ~I’m not sure, but I don’t like that look he had on his face. It may be because he’s sensed Kyogre’s presence. We must follow him and try to find out.~ The group began to move at that, Charizard using his wings to fly over the others as they followed the road.

When they reached the section that Groudon had walked through, Sonic peered down and saw that the broken road had formed a slope down to a series of pieces of roads that seemed to follow Groudon’s path. He looked at the others and said, “Looks like we can keep going this way. Let’s go!” He leapt onto the road and slid down, Yoshi, Link, and Team Defenders sliding down after him while Cadance with Spike and Charizard flew down. They kept moving once they reached the bottom, following the pieces of road that led to more destroyed buildings that they could use to pursue Groudon.

At the same time as Sonic’s group was pursuing Groudon, Tails’ group was following the large whale they had seen earlier, all of them now sporting new rain outfits courtesy of a combination spell from Rarity and Twilight. With none of them able to identify it, they had decided to follow it to determine what it was and what it was planning to do. Of course, it was no whale they were following; it was actually the Sea Basin Pokémon, Kyogre, and he too was being drawn to one spot like Groudon was, where each sensed the other’s presence. Despite having some difficulty moving through the flooded ruins of Station Square, the group continued to follow after him.

Both groups ended up stopping at roughly the same time, Tails’ group having found a shelter from the rain in the ruins where they could see Kyogre where he had stopped while Sonic’s group had caught up to Groudon inside of a destroyed building after climbing across the things being held up by a flame tornado. As the two groups looked on, they could see a white glowing spot like a star hanging in the air that the two Pokémon were staring at. Both groups wondered what the light was, but they wouldn’t have to wait much longer to find out.

While still staring at the white light, both Kyogre and Groudon reared back as they readied their attacks, water beginning to spill out of Kyogre’s mouth as it gathered there and solar energy shining in Groudon’s mouth, Kyogre unleashing Hydro Pump and Groudon firing Solarbeam nearly simultaneously. When the attacks reached the lights, they both struck and held there instead of surrounding the lights. As everyone watched on, the ground began to shake and the lights began to shine brighter, leaving everyone nervous about what was going to happen.

Suddenly, both lights began to expand outwards, beginning to fill the horizon of both destroyed cities as a shockwave traveled outwards. Tails’ group was thrown back into the wall of their makeshift shelter by the shockwave while Sonic’s group was blown off of the support beam they were standing on, everyone landing hard on the floor below. Their crashes and the force of the shockwave caused everyone to lose consciousness, the white in front of both Groudon and Kyogre continuing to expand as they broke through to each other…

Author's Note:

I wanted to do more with the Groudon/Kyogre chase, but I also wanted to make this part under 10,000 words rather than over, so unfortunately I had to sacrifice some quality near the end here. I hope that's okay with everyone...

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