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(Epilogue of Episode I)
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The atmosphere was cool as the two Pokemon lay on the ground of the cave, staring up through the hole in the ceiling. Neither of them felt like talking, instead preferring to lie still and recover as best they could. The only one with a question positively burning in her mind was Zerobi.
“Why?” Zerobi groaned after a few minutes, breaking the silence, “Why didn’t the Pokéball work?”
“… He said so himself, didn’t he?” Lucario groaned back since he was already sick of not being able to give a straight answer, “I’m not a Pokémon.”
“… What…?” Zerobi whispered as if she had heard him wrong.
“I’m human” Lucario continued while trying to ignore a sudden sharp pain in his shoulder, “Grr… I was human up until just recently, when I suddenly woke up in this strange body.”
“… Huh…?” Zerobi mumbled in a confused way.
“I don’t remember how it happened, but I was a blue wolf being chased by the police dog squad” Lucario tried to chuckle, but simply could not through all the pain, “Then I met you.”
“Wait, you’re serious?” Zerobi asked, before giving off several rapid coughs. It sounded very painful and Lucario became worried, but was too weak to even bend up to see how much damage she had taken.
“… So?” Lucario said, “Have you heard anything like it before?”
“No” Zerobi replied with her dazedness apparent, “I mean, there’s a classic movie series dealing with it, but I’ve never heard about it actually happening.”
“Pokémon watch movies?” Lucario asked as he noticed the heavy scent of ash in the air, “Hmm… Well, seems you read magazines, too…”
“... My magazines…” Zerobi said sadly, before they both went quiet for a while. Fresh air entering from outside had already begun to replace the smoke as well as the dankness that had filled the cave for so many centuries. Dreading the next rainfall, she wondered if there was any way to fix it.
“… We can’t stay here” Zerobi said after many moments of silence and coming up short of ideas, “It’s not much of a hiding place with a direct pipeline leading outside above us.”
“It wasn’t much of a hiding place to begin with!” Lucario said loudly, “They found us, didn’t they?”
“And that’s not even the strangest thing that happened today…” Zerobi sighed as she noticed her paralyzation diminishing and finally sat upright, “So, what are you going to do now?”
“… Do?” Lucario replied, for the first time in his life feeling envious of not being able to sit up.
“Yeah” Zerobi kept going as she added a hint of sarcasm to her voice, “Mr. Human-Pokémon-That-Cannot-Be-Caught?”
“… Stick with Lucario” Lucario mumbled quietly, “Well, I’m probably still being chased by Suicune and a bunch of other jerkoffs, so I guess I’ve got to get on the run again.”
“Where?” Zerobi asked bluntly.
“… Away?” Lucario responded, trying to out-blunt her.
“Ugh…“ Zerobi kept going, as she fell on her back again in exhaustion, “Do you have any supplies?”
“I don’t have anything but the clothes I’m wearing…” Lucario said depressingly before wanting to lighten up the mood a little, “… You know, my pants. Guess that’s more than you.”
For the next couple of minutes, they were both quiet. Zerobi was lying immobile on the ground, which Lucario thought was peculiar seeing how she was obviously able to sit up now. At first he did not question it as he felt relieved that he would get a chance to rest undisturbed, but as time passed he started to get worried. She had also been hit by the immense attack from Raikou earlier, and if she was not as resilient as he was…
“Hey… Are you still alive?” Lucario asked, trying to pick up any sign of life from his vertical position.
“… Fine” Zerobi suddenly said out loud.
“… Fine, what?” Lucario asked.
“I’ll come with you” Zerobi said, sitting up again.
“Uh…” Lucario exclaimed in surprise, “No, ‘alive’ means ‘not dead’ in human language.”
“Hmpf, I know what I said…” Zerobi muttered, “Either that or I stay here, in this broken hiding place that soon will probably be swarming with nasty trainers trying to bring you to justice.”
“… You miss Suicune or something?” Lucario asked as he tried to figure out a way to dissuade her, “This isn’t a pleasure cruise, everyone I meet is going to want me dead.”
“Don’t worry, I’m not exactly wanted by the law as it is” Zerobi snickered to herself, “We’ll have a better chance of survival if we stick together.”
“No, just…” Lucario continued, not knowing what to say or do, “You’re cool and all, but I always work alone. I don’t need a partner.”
“Obviously you do, since you don’t seem to know anything about Pokémon” Zerobi responded quickly and confidently, “In exchange, you can… No, you’d better tell me what it’s like being human.”
“… Being human, eh?” Lucario whispered to himself. Finally being able to move his arms a little, he felt something next to his right hand. Looked down, he saw the master ball Red had used earlier on the ground, discarded like an useless tool. He was still a bit curious after all the buildup the aged trainer had given, and managed to pick it up in his right hand.
“Oh hey, that’s…” Zerobi mumbled as she saw the thing in his hand which suddenly made her stammer, “… A-A master ball!?”
“Huh… I don’t get it” Lucario said before holding up the ball above him in order to study it in the light coming from outside, “How can such a small thing contain a Pokémon?”
“It’s quite complicated science…” Zerobi sighed, relived that the scary contraption was not in the hands of their enemy, “All I know is that if it gets you, you’re a slave for the rest of your life.”
“Hmm… I kind of want to try it out…” Lucario said slowly, eyeing the room for Zerobi’s location.
“K-Keep that thing away from me…!” Zerobi stuttered frightfully as fear welled up in her and she took a step back from him.
“You wanted to be with me, right?” Lucario said with a smile, “How about I catch you right now and make you my Pokémon?”
“W-What!?” Zerobi exclaimed, taken off guard by this unexpected turn of events. Lucario held the master ball high up into the air before throwing it away. It hit the bed in the corner of the room, and settled down quietly.
“Nah, just kidding” Lucario said, making Zerobi exhale deeply. He gave up on trying to moving as the mere action of throwing away the ball had used up the very last of his strength.
“Man, do you even know how scary it is, worrying about being captured by something like that!?” Zerobi shouted angrily at him, “Don’t abuse your privileges, and don’t joke around about it!”
“Y-You’ve got to have a sense of humor… If you’re going to follow me…” Lucario said weakly, the world spinning around him as he felt like he was fainting.
“What? Now you’ll let me come?” Zerobi responded, failing to disguise the eagerness in her voice.
“… Just… Let me sleep on it…” Lucario mumbled as he turned around and closed his eyes. Zerobi’s silence signified that he would finally gain the well deserved rest he had been craving so long. All the anguish and confusion softly faded away as he fell into a deep slumber.
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And so ends the first episode of this story, entitled 'Hunted Like A Dog, By A Dog'. Here is a preview of what you can expect on the next episode of The Human Species...
“Apparently, you’re still as crazy as ever… If you think there’s any hope for redemption after what you’ve done.”
The return of Snivy, the smuggest leaf of the law! But suddenly, a mysterious creature appears! Hmm, although slightly deformed, she looks a lot like our main character, doesn't she...?
"Lucario, you... You don't even recognize your own wife...?"
Conflicts are inevitable! Legendaries fall before hardships as heroes rise to the challenge, and even the most unlikely of beings are given a shot at having a great destiny...
This, and much, much more lies in the future of the story known as THE HUMAN SPECIES!