The Path of the Aura: Intertwining Crossroads

Chapter XIV (14): Crossing Dimensions

Location: Mirage Island

Date: October 17th, 2011

Time: 5:10 PM

The Pokémon within the cargo helicopter successfully touched down on Mirage Island, and have decided to take temporary shelter on the surface of the island. Once on the island, they all decided to spend their time exploring the contents of the island, before moving on with Phase Three of Team Liberator's Plan.

A few of the Pokémon remained nearby the cargo helicopter.

Terra was one of those Pokémon.

"Dusknoir," the Mach Pokémon inquires. "Where are we?"

The Gripper Pokémon still remained within the cargo helicopter's cockpit. Hearing Terra's question, it accessed the cargo helicopter's onboard GPS system and pinpointed their location within seconds.

The results bordered on the lines of impossibility.

"(This can't be right…)" Dusknoir pondered where the GPS system told it where they all were.

"Dusknoir?" Terra asked the Gripper Pokémon again. "Might I ask where we presently are?"

"…The GPS says that we're in the middle of the ocean," It said dubiously.

Terra, upon hearing this, decided to enter the cargo helicopter and see this anomaly for itself. Once it noticed the GPS system, telling the both of them that they were in the middle of the ocean, it had this to say.

"It's probably buggy."

Charmeleon resided outside of the cargo helicopter, overhearing their conversation, as it eyed the vast ocean beyond the borders of Mirage Island.

"It might be buggy, Terra," Charmeleon said before looking between its feet for a brief moment in time. "Just look at what we're standing on top of: dry land." The Flame Pokémon looked back at the ocean and shuddered as it thought this. "(I'm glad I'm on this island and not in the middle of the ocean.)"

Both Dusknoir and Terra exited the cargo helicopter and eyed the ocean alongside Charmeleon.

"So, where are we exactly?" Terra speculated.

Just as Terra had finished that question, Aqua came back to dry land after swimming around the island. It leapt out of the water and landed onto the shore, where it dragged its massive belly over towards the cargo helicopter with its broad flippers, directly over to where Charmeleon, Dusknoir, and Terra resided.

"We're on Mirage Island." Aqua said.

"How do you know that?" Dusknoir inquired out of curiosity.

"Well, prior to my capture," Aqua began to explain. "I used to travel the seas with my herd."

All of a sudden, Aqua's eyes locked onto Terra and it froze the Mach Pokémon's mouth shut with an ICE BEAM attack, preventing any further pardoning from the Mach Pokémon that would quickly get on its nerves. Terra struggled in thawing its mouth out, slowly scratching away at the ice with its claws, thankful that this was one of the times where it was able to breathe through its nostrils, rather than having that frozen sealed as well.

"We heard plenty of rumors from fellow Water-Type Pokémon, explaining of a disappearing island within the Hoenn region. The rumors explain an island that houses Liechi Berries and inhabiting Wynaut."

Aqua—as well as the Pokémon that it was talking to—notice both Liechi Berries and Wynaut in the far-off vicinity.

"This must be that island," the Transport Pokémon concluded.

Terra eventually tired of scratching away at the ice and realized that it could use Charmeleon's tail flame to melt it. It retrieved the Flame Pokémon with its arms and held the tip of its tail to its face. And as the ice thawed away, Charmeleon couldn't help but feel as if it was just used as a tool.

Luxray suddenly came into the picture and asked the Pokémon this question.

"Has anyone seen Lairon, Tyranitar, and Wanderer?"

20.1: Personal Loss

Location: Mirage Island (Open Field)

Time: 5:16 PM

In an open field on the surface of Mirage Island, Wanderer resided atop of the grass, on his right side and in the fetal position, crying silently.

A group of Wynaut surrounded this solemn Aura Pokémon, wondering why it seemed so depressed. A few of them thought of comforting it, and decided to bring over a dozen Liechi Berries in an attempt to do so.

Wanderer didn't so much as pay attention to them. It hardly even noticed their presence either, because its eyes were blinded by its own tears.

The group of Wynaut, feeling that their attempts at mollification were in vain, decided to simply leave the Liechi Berries behind and go their separate ways.

Both Lairon and Tyranitar, whom spent their time searching for the Aura Pokémon, eventually located it and approached it.

"Look, there it is," Tyranitar said. "It's just crying to itself like a little bitch."

Wanderer didn't even listen to the Armor Pokémon deliberate, expletive remark.

Lairon—being far gentler than its companion—decided to walk up to the Aura Pokémon, to see what was wrong with it. "…You okay…?" It mumbled when it faced Wanderer.

"…First it was over a year ago, when Sceptile and Tiny were obliterated and removed from this world…" Wanderer spoke telepathically, while it was still crying in the middle of its words. "…And now, just yesterday…Xeno ceases to exist."

"…" Lairon remains emotionally and physically stagnant, its eyes shrouded in the same darkness that always seems to be present around it.

When it was able to see through its tears and notice Lairon's quiescence, Wanderer stops crying momentarily and asks the Iron Armor Pokémon this question.

"Are you even capable of feeling emotions?"

For a brief moment, Lairon's eyes were visible to the Aura Pokémon. Its eyes had an honest look to them, especially when Lairon muttered "…No… Sorry…"

Wanderer, once Lairon's eyes returned to darkness, simply broke down again and resumed sobbing.

Tyranitar, still amongst both Lairon and Wanderer, was beginning to grow aggravated from the constant sobbing that just wouldn't cease. In an attempt to stop Wanderer from sobbing, Tyranitar grabbed it by its sides and hoisted it up to its face.

"Listen, you!" Tyranitar began. "Stop bitching about those that you've lost, no matter how important to you they may seem! Stop bitching about it, because it's in the past, and the past is set in stone, unable to be altered!"

"…" Wanderer looked at the Armor Pokémon with a pitiful, teary-eyed countenance, taking all of this too closely to its chest.

"Everyone dies, and no one lives forever!" Tyranitar continued. "I've witnessed death the instant that I was born in Team Rocket! You've hardly gotten to know it! Seeing it so much has hardened my emotions to the point where they're as dry and unforgiving as the desert! You've yet to grow accustomed to it!"

"…" Wanderer looked back at the floor and continued to sob, appearing unaffected by Tyranitar's questionable attempt at "mollification".

Tyranitar quickly finds this to be pointless and simply throws Wanderer aside. Wanderer lands on its right side and curls up into the fetal position once more, uncaring of Tyranitar's actions, behavior, or reasoning.

Moments after, Aqua, Charmeleon, Dusknoir, Luxray, and Terra arrive to the scene. They barely catch Tyranitar's and Wanderer's "conversation".

Tyranitar decides to retrieve Wanderer's Liechi Berries and then notices the group of Pokémon that arrived.

"If you want to attempt to placate this bitch, then go ahead!" Tyranitar told them before walking closer to the shoreline, where it sat down and began to stuff the Berries down its mouth.

20.2: Returning Survivors

Time: 5:50 PM

The sun was beginning to set over Mirage Island, blanketing the sky in a red-orange hue. Within the sky, four Pokémon—currently harboring invisibility—made their descent onto Mirage Island: Absol, Latias, Latios, and Xeno.

Upon landing nearby the cargo helicopter, the invisibility dissipated, exposing a Latias holding an Absol in its arms, and a Latios with a Lucario on its back, and Sceptile's buster sword in its arms.

Latias releases Absol from its grip, and Lucario dismounts Latios. Lucario retrieves the three Poké Balls in his possession—Beldum's Ultra Ball, Sceptile's Luxury Ball, and Torchic's friend Ball—and releases the Pokémon within them.

Once Sceptile was out of its Poké Ball, Latias handed over the buster sword in its possession to its respective owner. As Sceptile retrieved the sword and strapped it onto its being, Lucario removes his battle armor with ease—simply by using PSYCHIC—and places it within the cargo helicopter.

Absol takes a brief look at the cargo helicopter, seeing it simply for what it was and not what was on it. "Is this their cargo helicopter?" Absol spoke to Lucario.

"Yes…it is," He responded plainly, having yet to come to respect the Disaster Pokémon.

Lucario looks on ahead from the cargo helicopter to see where the passengers of the aerial vehicle now resided. He quickly sees them on an open field, all gathered in one area, surrounding Wanderer for some reason.

Lucario quickly contemplated a likely reason.

"The six of you…" Lucario looked back at his party. "I need you all to remain here."

"…What for?" Latios said with minor irritation in its tone of voice.

"I have one wrong to set right before I decide to introduce you all to them." He said, before recalling what happened yesterday prior to his fight with Giovanni.

(Lucario's Flashback)

"I can't lose you like we did with Sceptile and Tiny, Lucario! They meant a lot to us and they died under his hands! Do you know what kind of a person Giovanni is?! He had you murder other Pokémon, because they were inferior! He will murder you, like he did with Sceptile and Tiny!"

"…" Lucario never looked away from Giovanni, not wanting to expose himself to a surprise attack, and not wanting to show Wanderer that it was getting to him emotionally.

A few of Lucario's tears dribbled down the visor, and took shelter in his fur collar. He recalled painfully how Giovanni and his Team Rocket Grunts murdered their friends, captured them both, and had him "dispose" of feeble Pokémon and capture stronger Pokémon. All of it was true and the emotional pain of it was detrimentally real.

The fact that Lucario didn't so much as give Wanderer a sideways glance further marred the light-furred Aura Pokémon. "We both loved them like family! You, Sceptile, Tiny, and me! We were inseparable, us four! You and I are the only ones left, and yet you're willing to sacrifice yourself—"

"Shut up and think for once!" Lucario snarled out of impatience.

Wanderer temporarily stopped breathing when Lucario barked at it.

"One of us has to stay behind in order to stall Giovanni, so that everyone else can escape without interruption! I'm blessing you with vital time, time which you're squandering over by bawling!"

"(*Sniff*)" Wanderer was unsympathetically silenced because Lucario struck a critical point in this imperative situation.

"…" Underneath the visor of his battle armor, Lucario's eyes glowed briefly before the cargo helicopter's side door closed telekinetically. Lucario chose not to say another word to Wanderer, knowing that he had unrestrictedly wounded the light-furred Aura Pokémon's emotions.

And with that, Dusknoir immediately punched the engine of the cargo helicopter, having the twin-rotary blades revolve harder, lifting it higher. Lucario, standing directly beneath the cargo helicopter, was unmoved—except for his shuffling fur—by the gale produced. Dusknoir dexterously steered the massive vehicle out of the exit and away from Team Rocket Main Headquarters.

(End of Lucario's Flashback)

"When should we become visible?" Latias inquired.

"When you see me swivel my ears a few times," Lucario gives a brief demonstration of this action by swiveling his ears away from each other and stationing behind his head, and then repeating it a few more times.

His comrades nodded in agreement and remain as they are, beside the cargo helicopter.

Lucario proceeds over towards where his colleagues were located. His friends watched on from their location, waiting for his signal and watching on at what Lucario had set himself on doing.

Location: Mirage Island (Open Field)

Time: 5:55 PM

"Come on, Wanderer," Aqua spoke to the light-furred Aura Pokémon. "You should look on the bright side."

"...Like what?" Wanderer spoke feebly, crying to itself in its fetal position.

"For all we know, Xeno actually defeated Giovanni."

"…" Wanderer appeared unchanged by Aqua's hypothesis, dubious of that outcome.

Aqua looked at all the other Pokémon around it and made a few body gestures, signaling them to join in on attempting to soothe the melancholy Aura Pokémon.

Terra was the first to step in.

"…Yeah. Xeno defeated Giovanni, killed him, and brought an end to Team Rocket," The Mach Pokémon said with artificial enthusiasm.

Luxray followed suit.

"Xeno has likely escaped from their Main Headquarters building and is on its way over here right now."

Dusknoir decided to speak its mind.

"It'll likely come over here when we least expect it and say something gratifying, such as—"

"I see you're all in good health, everyone," Lucario said when he was directly behind Dusknoir's back. "I'm relieved to know that you all escaped in one piece."

"Precisely! Something like—"

Everyone turned their attention over to the dark-furred Aura Pokémon that stood before them. The sight of him—in the living flesh—before their presence immediately filled them with an emotional blend of euphoria and respite.

Everybody, except for the emotionally-shackled Tyranitar, whom looked at the Aura Pokémon from the shoreline and thought "(So, you're still alive…)" with a small grin as it continued to ingest the Liechi Berries it held.

And everybody, except for Wanderer, whom just rolled over to see Lucario with its bloodshot eyes, in too much disbelief to behold what exists before it.

The remaining Pokémon flocked over to their leader, some of them hugging him—being careful to avoid Lucario's lethal chest-spike in the process—, overjoyed that he's returned.

Tyranitar, once it finished eating its Liechi Berries, proceeded over to Lucario during the middle of this euphoric commotion. "How did you escape from Giovanni's stronghold?" It asked with cynicism in its tone of voice.

Lucario, once he had a chance to speak between hugs, had this to say.

"I made his hellfire freeze over."

Lairon, whom remained emotionally stagnant and close to Lucario's feet, looked up at the Aura Pokémon and muttered "…Is he still alive?"

Lucario knelt down to one knee, to Lairon's level of height. "It's a possibility, since I left after using SHEER COLD on him."

Before anyone could speak to the contrary of this, Lucario got back on both feet and reassured them.

"However, if he—or his organization—ever returns before us, we won't hold back on obliterating both Giovanni and Team Rocket."

Everybody nodded in agreement to his words.

Lucario looks at his fellow colleagues and quickly notices that Wanderer is not here to acknowledge his return. He looks around himself to see where the light-furred Aura Pokémon resided, and notices that Wanderer was upright, standing behind the rest of the Pokémon, wiping the tears from its eyes and doing its best to repair the shattered pieces of its composure.

Lucario steps forward and away from his fellow colleagues, approaching Wanderer simultaneously. He stops when the distance separating them both is minor. He looks at the light-furred Aura Pokémon with an apologetic look in his eyes.

Wanderer removed most of his moisture from his face; however the fur on his cheeks were still soggy from his own tears. He set his arms down and ogled Lucario with swollen red eyes and a glum facial expression.

Lucario begins to scratch the back of his neck with his left paw. "Listen… About what happened back at Team Rocket…"

He stops scratching, but doesn't remove his paw from the back of his neck. Instead, he looks away from Wanderer and upward towards the sky, looking into his mind rather than the setting sun or the orange sky and its crimson clouds.

"I was feeling constricted of time, and I only wanted to see all of you escape while simultaneously making sure that Giovanni wasn't acting against you. I only had your physical safekeeping in mind, and I reluctantly spoke in the manner that I did in order to—"

Wanderer, when Lucario was unaware, suddenly embraced the Aura Pokémon with both arms. It had its torso shifted over to its right side, and said torso leaned over to its right side, so neither Pokémon's chest-spikes were harming each other inadvertently. Also, because both Pokémon's heights differ greatly—Wanderer is 3' 11" and Lucario is 5' 02" or 5' 09" if his ears are included—, Wanderer's head barely reached the top of Lucario's collarbone.

"What are you—?"

"I no longer care about that, having taken the time to think it over," it said truthfully, bawling once again as it had Lucario within its paws. "I'm just ecstatic that you're alive and here, with all of us again."

Lucario, knowing now that his primary reason for apologizing has now been made void, simply took advantage of the emotional reunion and hugged Wanderer back. Tears overflowed his eyes, but they never made his breathing shallow.

Everybody else clumped alongside both embraced Aura Pokémon, feeling overjoyed enough to know that a group hug was greatly needed for this time. Everybody found a place in this cluster, and hugged each other with peaceful looks in their countenances.

Even Tyranitar joined in on the group hug, mostly because it felt left out. However, it didn't exactly smile at doing so. Nevertheless, it did find this reunion touching and deep down within its heart, it was feeling as much joy as everybody else. That joy, however, never cut through the rocky exterior that Tyranitar possesses and became present before those watching.

All of the Pokémon disbanded after enough time passed during the hug. The first Pokémon to speak up was Dusknoir, whom had a question in its mind that it desired an answer to.

"How in Arceus's name did you arrive here?"

The words of the Gripper Pokémon lit up the attention of the other Pokémon.

"Dusknoir's right," Charmeleon said. "I doubt that—even with your current abilities—you can cross the sea."

"You can't FLY great distances either." Terra spoke from knowledge of Lucario's abilities, and the experience it has with flying—since it can FLY at Mach 1.

"How did you even know we were here, on Mirage Island?" Aqua wondered.

Before Lucario decided to answer their questions, he swiveled his ears a few times, and pointed over to the cargo helicopter. "Look over there," he said.

And immediately, once he did so, everybody sees six Pokémon approaching them, originating from behind the cargo helicopter. They see a levitating Beldum, with a Torchic perched on its head. They see a jolly Latias and an annoyed Latios. They also see a Sceptile—with a missing right arm, a surplus of burn scars, and a buster sword strapped onto its back—as well as an Absol—with a nonexistent left eye and a black bandana around its mouth.

"The Eon Pokémon pair guided me here," Lucario said simply.

Lucario's colleagues see Latias smiling widely for hearing Lucario give it credit, and they also see Latios looking at its sister with an irritated countenance.

Wanderer quickly locks its eyes at the one-armed Forest Pokémon and is gradually filling up with disbelief, dubious that this Sceptile is the Sceptile that it recalls having perished in a Poison-Type Pokémon's cluster detonation, and simultaneously hopeful that it is.

It knew that the only way to find out is to ask.

"…Xeno?" It said without looking away at the Forest Pokémon. "Is that…Sceptile?"

"Yes, it is," Lucario reassured his friend. "Sceptile actually managed to survive the explosion that we both believed ended him."

Lucario paused temporarily to observe the Forest Pokémon in better detail, eyeing Sceptile's lack of its right arm.

"Or at least…most of it…" He grinned slightly and chuckled afterward.

"Oh, ha hah… Make fun of the crippled burn victim, why don't you." Sceptile laughed hollowly at Lucario's dark humor and then approaches Lucario's colleagues, beginning to get to know them.

Beldum and Torchic—as well as Latias and Latios—decide to mimic Sceptile's choice of actions and begin to cement their friendship alongside Lucario's friends.

Both Lucario and Wanderer watched on at this get-together of Pokémon—Wanderer standing on Lucario's right side. And as Wanderer watched on longer at Lucario's new friends, the questions it had about them entered its mind.

"That Beldum and Torchic…" Wanderer began. "Where did they come from?"

Lucario began to explain. "They discreetly watched my fight with Giovanni and followed me wherever I went after I escaped from Team Rocket Main Headquarters. They followed me to Celadon Forest, where I decided to stroll across Memory Lane. They desired to train alongside me, and didn't seem to care when I told them that they would be inadvertently placing their lives in jeopardy, since Team Rocket will likely pursue us vindictively after our rebellious actions."

Wanderer took a moment to absorb the information, and then recalled Sceptile again. "In Celadon Forest, is that where you reunited with Sceptile?"

Lucario nodded. "It never decided to leave its home. The events that took place when Team Rocket captured us—as well as the time afterward—proved too stressful for Sceptile to handle. First it had its home and right arm obliterated, then it had Tiny…perish before its eyes, and finally it assumed that we no longer existed on this world. It drove the residential Pokémon away because of its emotions. That sword that it acquired kept any living being at bay."

Lucario then recalled his brawl with the Forest Pokémon.

"…Or any intruder six feet under the earth."

Wanderer took another moment to assimilate Lucario's words. It then recalled Tiny, knowing well enough that it wasn't here with them.

"Tiny's dead…isn't it…" Wanderer's voice became somber.

Lucario simply sighed and looked at the darkening sky, deciding not to delve deeper into such a painful realization.

Wanderer, deciding to change the subject immediately, so as not to cry again, quickly looked at the Eon Pokémon pair and pointed one of the digits of his right paw at them. "Where did you find those two?"

"They found me." Lucario corrected. "They say that they've been observing me for some time now. However, to be honest with you, I just believe that they're both enigmas. I can't even read their minds to know what they're thinking about. Their psychic powers are enough to buffer my own."

Wanderer attempted to focus its extrasensory capabilities towards the minds of the Eon Pokémon, only to find that it was quickly blocked off of unauthorized mental access.

"Do you understand what I mean?" Lucario noticed Wanderer's attempt.

"Yes, I do."

"I don't know what they're thinking, or what they're planning." Lucario said calmly. "However, I can rest easy, knowing that it's something beneficial or honorable."

"You can tell that from the time you've spent with them?"

Lucario shook his head. "No. I speculate my hypothesis only from their overall character."

Wanderer paid closer attention to the Eon Pokémon, their behavior in particular. It noticed that Latias was blithe, ebullient, and full of life. It was always smiling as it conversed with Lucario's ex-Team Rocket colleagues, being the emotional spotlight of the group. Latios however, it was more composed and unyielding as it conversed. It always had a serious, monotone facial expression, which would show signs of annoyance or impatience habitually. It never showed the same level of positive emotion or energy as its red-colored sister counterpart did, nor Latias showed the same level of negative emotion or energy as its blue-colored brother equivalent.

"Huh…I see what you mean."

During the middle of their conversation, Absol—who never entered the throng of Pokémon in order to make its presence known—decided to sit down adjacent to Wanderer, watching on at the Pokémon equally, as both Wanderer and Xeno were doing. It never made eye contact with either Aura Pokémon, deliberately doing so in order to get their attention first.

And receive their attention, it did.

"So…you're still alive…" Wanderer looked at the Disaster Pokémon, feigning astonishment and speaking in a disappointed tone.

"And you still recognize me after sixteen years of absence." Absol remarked with bone dry audacity, before locking eye-to-eyes with Wanderer.

"Wanderer, Absol has had a change of heart, as hard as it is to believe because of its past actions." Lucario explained behind the light-furred Aura Pokémon's back. "Latias saved its life from the near-death condition that I inflicted upon it during our battle. Afterwards, Latias helped it realign its life and has been its closest friend ever since."

Absol looked at the dark-furred Aura Pokémon with a sense of its privacy being broken. "How long have you been reading my mind during our trip over here?"

"Enough to know what you've been up to in your nonexistence," Lucario said with honesty.

"I suppose I would've told you everything anyway…" Absol digressed before looking back at Wanderer, turning its body this time in order to properly face the light-furred Aura Pokémon. "Anyway, as your friend said earlier, I've had a change of heart and decided to repent for my terrible actions. I'm hoping that, just like Xeno Lucario, you'll give me a second chance and allow me to prove myself that there's both hope and nobleness in me."

Absol, as it did so before with Xeno, extended its right paw outward to Wanderer.

"Can you find it in your justified heart to forgive me?" Absol's tone of voice almost became beseeching as it concluded.

"" Wanderer's eyes locked onto Absol's paw. It ponders Absol's newfound being, as well as its words and wonders if all of it is truly honest, being considerably doubtful if it was genuinely truthful or manifestly deceptive.

"Just so you know, Absol is speaking the truth," Lucario said as it was discreetly reading Wanderer's mind.

Wanderer looked back at Absol's face and could see the honesty, the truth in its countenance—despite the fact that Absol was missing its left eye and had its entire mouth concealed with a black bandana. Seeing this, Wanderer extended its right paw outward, reaching out to shake Absol's paw and accepting its plea for forgiveness.

However, as it occurred before with Xeno, Wanderer evaded Absol's right paw and instead faced the palm of its right paw directly before Absol's forehead.

Absol, seeing Wanderer's palm placed almost directly on its forehead, knew well enough what was going to come next.

"Oh fu—"

Wanderer delivered a FORCE PALM attack directly on Absol's face with enough potency to not only knock it back about fifteen feet, but also forcefully remove the black bandana that it wore around its mouth. The lack of lips became known to Wanderer, the instance that it noticed it—as well as the group of Pokémon that heard the blast of aura energy.

Wanderer retracts its paw back to its side and smiles faintly. "Apology accepted," it said, satisfied with its single act of revenge.

Absol, once the pain settled in, covered its entire face with its paws and began rolling spastically on the grassy floor below. "Oh Arceus, I think you broke something!" It moaned in pain.

"Don't worry. We'll get used to Absol," Lucario reassured Wanderer before grinning evilly. "…Eventually."

Wanderer nodded with an evil grin as well, already thinking up methods as to get even with the Disaster Pokémon.

"I think I have a concussion!" Absol continued, moments before Latias approached it and tended to its wellbeing.

20.3: As the Weeks Become the Months Become the Years

A few days were spent on Mirage Island by the group of fifteen Pokémon—Absol, Aqua Lapras, Beldum, Charmeleon, Dusknoir, Lairon, Latias, Latios, Luxray, Sceptile, Torchic, Terra Garchomp, Tyranitar, Wanderer Lucario, and Xeno Lucario.

The time was spent alongside all of the Pokémon that most of the group liberated from Team Rocket Main Headquarters. They discussed where each and every one of the hundreds of Pokémon live—or desire to live now—and where they should travel first to return them home.

In the end, Team Liberator came to this conclusion: those who wish to return home will get priority over those who wish to live in a new location; however those who reside closer to their current location—as it is, or desire to relocate to someplace new—will be relocated first, and will progress farther and farther as such.

A few of the liberated Pokémon—mostly Water-Type Pokémon—even decide to reside on Mirage Island, finding the island's foliage, scenery, and wildlife to be appealing and peaceful.

Before leaving Mirage Island, a proper funeral was paid in respects to Tiny, the Emanation Pokémon whose life was cut short by the same organization that abducted them. Team Liberator paid their respects during the funeral. Lucario, Sceptile, and Wanderer spoke more about Tiny, since they knew it as a close friend.

Absol however, spoke more than either of them, demonstrating its "Speaker for the Dead" skills before everybody. It began with the first moment that it met Tiny, admitting the monstrous actions that it committed to Tiny's group of Riolu, and continued with the clashes that they had. It ended with the explosion that devastated Tiny's body, before the Emanation Pokémon perished peacefully within Sceptile's left arm. All of this information was asked for beforehand, so that Absol saw Tiny's full biography.

The Pokémon listening on at Absol showed sufficient signs of respect and self-control, never insulting the choices that the Disaster Pokémon regretted doing in its life. Even the three Pokémon that had the most difficulty adapting to Absol's new persona—Lucario, Sceptile and Wanderer—listened on as Absol recited Tiny's life before them, meshing its connections with the Emanation Pokémon's.

They knew now, more than ever, that Absol had decisively changed for the better, and truly deserves a second chance. And that second chance was one that they three of them—along with every Pokémon in their group—would grant to the Disaster Pokémon.

Once the funeral ended, both Latias and Latios left the party, vaguely saying that they'll return when they're needed, leaving Team Liberator puzzled.

Next thing in the morning, the cargo helicopter journeyed away from Mirage Island, leaving behind the Pokémon that decided to stay on the secluded piece of exposed land. Team Liberator stopped by various locations scattered across the globe, releasing the captive Pokémon where they desired. On each and every location, a sufficient amount of time was spent strengthening the abilities of the released Pokémon, so as to fortify their chances of not being re-captured.

The plain process of flying over to the next nearest destination, releasing the captured Pokémon, strengthening the Pokémon, and repeating the sequence until their task was complete took much longer than expected.

Overall, Team Liberator spent eight years, six months, and sixteen days in completing Phase Three of Team Liberator's Plan—and that's including the few days spent on Mirage Island in order to decide what to do and where to go from there. Of course, that time was considered well spent by all of the Pokémon in Team Liberator, because it benefitted them in the long run.

During that time, all of the Pokémon within Team Liberator—that were still capable of evolution—successfully evolved one stage in their development. Both Lairon and Charmeleon finalized their stages of growth, becoming an Aggron and a Charizard. And both Torchic and Beldum progressed in their evolutionary line, becoming a Combusken and a Metang. Everyone else remained unchanged in appearance, but changed somewhat in their experience and maturity.

(National Pokédex entry #306: Aggron, the Iron Armor Pokémon. It is a Rock-Type and Steel-Type Pokémon that measures in at 6' 11" and weighs a hefty 793.7 lbs. While seeking iron for food, it digs tunnels by breaking through bedrock with its steel horns. Despite this phenomenal display of strength however, Aggron virtually unanimously favors defense over offense.)

(National Pokédex entry #006: Charizard, the Flame Pokémon. It is a Fire-Type and Flying-Type Pokémon that measures in at 5' 07" and weighs in at approximately 199.5 lbs. It is said that Charizard's fire burns hotter if it has experienced harsh battles. However, due to the pacifistic nature of this Charizard, that is not the case.)

(National Pokédex entry # 256: Combusken, the Young Fowl Pokémon. It is a Fighting-Type and Fire-Type Pokémon that measures in at 2' 11" and weighs approximately 43.0 lbs. It's kicking mastery lets it loose 10 kicks per second. It emits sharp cries to intimidate foes. However, being able to kick faster than the eye can see, it really isn't necessary to intimidate opponents.)

(National Pokédex entry #375: Metang, the Iron Claw Pokémon. It is a Psychic-Type and Steel-Type Pokémon that measures in at 3' 11" and weighs a bulky 446.4 lbs. It is formed by two Beldum joining together. Its steel body won't be scratched if it collides with a jet. With such density to this Pokémon, it's no wonder that it can withstand such forceful blows.)

Once the final phase of Xeno's plan at hand was completed, the name "Team Liberator" was officially ended. Afterwards, the group had difficulty deciding what to do next, having done set tasks for years. However, Wanderer recalled Spear Pillar, and the prophecy that lay inscribed on one of its fragmented pillars.

With nothing else to do, everybody set a course towards Mt. Coronet, utilizing the cargo helicopter that has lasted them for so long to transport them there.

20.4: Spear Pillar's Prophecy

Location: Mt. Coronet (Spear Pillar)

Date: April 2nd, 2019

Time: 11:29 AM

Xeno Lucario alone proceeded through the internal network of caves that reside within Mt. Coronet, navigating through with only the helpful battle armor that he had on his body, Sceptile's buster sword strapped onto his back, as well as a brand new utility belt that contained the Poké Balls of every Pokémon in his party—including Absol, whom is now contained within a Moon Ball.

"(Not even the Pokémon who resided here wished to continue living here,)" Lucario thought, pondering the Pokémon that Team Rocket captured from this location before they were liberated by his doing. "(We could've come here years sooner if even one Pokémon decided to live here.)"

Lucario hopped across the cliffs that Mt. Coronet had within its caves, swam across the internal lakes that resided within the caverns, and braved his way across the harsh blizzards that separated many of the fissures from each other, all in a driven effort to reach the summit.

Once he had reached the summit, he simply navigated his way through one last cave in order to reach the entrance of Spear Pillar. The entrance—as both Mewtwo and Wanderer last saw it—was caved in by boulders and seemingly impassable.

Lucario, utilizing PSYCHIC, had all twelve of the Poké Balls in his possession dispatch from his utility belt, and revolve around his body in the form of two rings with six Poké Balls in each.

One by one, he telekinetically released each and every one of his comrades from their capsules: Absol from its Moon Ball, Aggron from its Heavy Ball, Aqua Lapras from its Net Ball, Charizard from its Level Ball, Combusken from its Friend Ball, Dusknoir from its Dusk Ball, Luxray from its Nest Ball, Metang from its Ultra Ball, Sceptile from its Luxury Ball, Terra Garchomp from its Quick Ball, Tyranitar from its Premier Ball, and Wanderer Lucario from its Great Ball.

All of the Pokémon emerged in tandem, and once they were all out in the open, Lucario returned the Poké Balls to his respective utility belt with PSYCHIC and handed Sceptile its buster sword.

"We all know what to do," Lucario said simply to his party.

Everybody understood and faced the entrance to Spear Pillar, immediately noticing the monumental amount of boulders that blocked off the entrance. And with their combined strength and attributes, they removed the obstructions with relative ease.

And now, with the entrance to Spear Pillar ameliorated, everybody proceeded across.

All of the Pokémon look and meander around the place, observing this location to its fullest. They all attempt to locate the specific pillar that Wanderer recalls having a prophecy inscribed on it. However, with hundreds of them around the place—some of which have crumbled onto the floor—, all of which are inscribed with the language of the Unown, the task would prove daunting.

"Wanderer, which of the pillars is the one with the prophecy?" Lucario asked as he searched.

Wanderer observed all of the fragmented pillars, recalling that it was that type of pillar that had the prophecy inscribed on it. "It's on one of the fragmented pillars."

Everybody simplified their search to the fragmented pillars. However, since only Wanderer knew the language—as did Lucario if he utilized the language translator function of his battle armor's visor—, their searched proved somewhat worthless.

Thankfully, Wanderer searched through its memory to recall the exact location of the crumbled pillar, and quickly proceeded over to it.

"It's this one!" It shouted. "The one that's most fragmented!"

Quickly, everybody homed in on Wanderer's location. Those who were able to use telekinetic abilities—Aqua, Dusknoir, Metang, and Sceptile—used PSYCHIC to gather all of the fragmented pieces and connect them as they once were. With the pillar temporarily made whole again, both Wanderer and Xeno began to decipher the language, one with his helmet's built-in translation software, and the other with its acquired knowledge of the exotic language.

The language of the Unown inscribed on that pillar duplicated itself onto Lucario's visor and presented itself there on-screen, before his sharp eyes. Once there, the software installed within the computer system of Xeno's helmet began to cycle through known languages in its memory banks to begin translation. The software immediately locked on to the English language and translated the language of the Unown to it, its twenty-six letter alphabet and countless more symbols classified within the language closely matching that of the twenty-eight known symbols of the Unown.

This message immediately became visible for him to read, once all of the symbols of the Unown were replaced with closely-similar letters of the English alphabet—with the addition of the acute in the letter "e" in "Pokémon" for grammatical reasons. Simultaneously, Wanderer did what Xeno's software did for him, all within its mind, with the knowledge that it had acquired on the language because of its past experiences.





Underneath the visor, Lucario's eyes widened and he could feel his heart beat harder, but not faster. The pure realization of what the prophecy meant shook his senses to the core and rendered him in disbelief.

"The prophecy inscribed on the pillar…" Lucario muttered. "…is referring to…me."

Before Lucario—or anyone else within his party—could make sense of what this meant, a red laser beam immediately appeared behind Lucario's head, gradually converting his entire being into pure sanguine energy.

Quickly, everyone puts their full attention to Lucario—which caused the pillar to collapse once more from a lack of concentration. They see Lucario frozen in place, contemplating the fact that the red laser was fired from the only person who possesses his respective Poké Ball.

"Giovanni fired his laser at me…didn't he?" Lucario said meekly.

Half of his party nodded at him.

Lucario only has enough time to sigh before his entire being—excluding his battle armor and utility belt—is assimilated into Giovanni's "Team Rocket's Poké Ball". Lucario's possessions collapsed onto the floor, his battle armor bouncing once or twice and resonating metallically on the stone floor before remaining stagnant. Afterwards, Giovanni makes his presence known to Xeno's party by entering Spear Pillar from the entrance that they cleared open.

Before them, they see Giovanni, iron clad in his battle armor, stepping slowly towards them until he is within twenty feet of them.

"The prophecy inscribed on that pillar," he spoke through the microphone within his visor. "I've known about it for years, which is why I had it shattered, so that no one else would understand it."

Giovanni sees the crumbled pillar within the corner of his visor and looks back at Lucario's party.

"However, in retrospect, I probably should've had it better obliterated, leaving behind no former trace of its existence."

He then looks at the "Team Rocket's Poké Ball" that he held within his armored right hand, imagining a shackled dark-furred Aura Pokémon residing within it, as if he were Giovanni's personal bitch, a tool that he could use in his goals for eventual global conquest.

"Then again, it no longer matters, because the Pokémon prophesized now belongs to me. And with its power—once I've assimilated it—, I will have the world kneel before me."

Every one of Lucario's Pokémon formed a battle stance, willing to fight to have their friend back beside them.

Giovanni simply chuckled to himself. "You all have no idea how insignificant you are compared to me. I can kill you all in one fell—"

Giovanni suddenly stopped talking when he felt his right hand resonate heavily. He looked at his hand and noticed the "Team Rocket's Poké Ball" in his possession rattle fiercely, Xeno within there fighting his way out of Giovanni's capsule prison.

Against Giovanni's plans, "Team Rocket's Poké Ball" opened, Lucario having successfully broken free of it. He reemerged and rematerialized amongst his friends once more, using PSYCHIC to have his battle armor and utility belt return onto his being within seconds.

Before Giovanni could even make sense of Lucario escaping from his respective Poké Ball, the dark-furred Aura Pokémon reacted faster than him and utilized the same telekinetic abilities to remove Giovanni's held Poké Ball from his grasp. Now "Team Rocket's Poké Ball" hovered over to Lucario's utility belt. Once in his possession and safely stored within his utility belt, Lucario formed a battle stance alongside his comrades, recalling well enough that the next time he saw Giovanni, it was to sign his death warrant, using Giovanni's blood itself as the ink.

Giovanni remained paused and immobile, trying to comprehend how quickly events backfired for him. However, that all quickly changed when Giovanni's mind became filled with martial intent.

"You've caused me enough grief when you escaped from my HQ building those years ago." Giovanni spoke darkly to the group of Pokémon before him. "And now that the both of us are here in the same place…"

The area of battle armor around Giovanni's left and right shoulders suddenly began to extend and transmogrify into the Triple Threat weapons that he had in their last encounter. The only difference this time is that there are now two of them, each of them set on Gatling Mode, armed, whirring madly, and aimed at Xeno and his friends. Also, Giovanni's hands clenched tight and began to emanate a large amount of aura, fueled by the complicated mimicry capabilities of his battle armor, as well as his personal vendetta with Xeno. He formed a battle stance once he was set for battle.

"…I'm going to enjoy eviscerating each and every one of you bastards with lead and aura."

Before the battle began, the entire space within the vicinity flashed a bright white light, blinding everybody within the area. Once the light receded—and the eyes of the victims recovered—, Spear Pillar adopted a different color scheme.

Everything inside of the room suddenly appeared as different shades of blue. The mere flash of light was enough to discombobulate Giovanni and his enemy Pokémon.

However, before they could make sense of it, another flash of white light appeared, blinding everybody once more. Once the light faded away again, everybody (eventually) saw Spear Pillar adopt a new, sudden change of color scheme. The room, along with its current residents, adopted a hodgepodge of purple.

"What the hell is going on?" Giovanni wondered, astonished by the abnormal color transmogrification of Spear Pillar.

All of the Pokémon were equally as confused as he was. They did not know what to make of this abnormal phenomenon.

The same white light flashed thrice. And once it faded, there was no longer any color alteration of the locality. Instead, between both opposing sides of human and Pokémon, two rifts in space began to form on the ground. One of them is a dim shade of blue, and the other is a pale shade of purple.

From within these rifts, two different Pokémon of massive proportions began to rise out of them, hovering gradually higher into the air.

The Pokémon appearing out of the blue rift is physically structured like a sauropod. It is mostly dark blue in appearance, with black eyes that had red irises within them. However, certain parts of its quadruped body were metallic grey in color. Those parts included its broad crest that stretches all the way to the back of its head, its chest plate—that possesses a blue diamond in the center—, its three spines on the back of its long neck, its long claws, and its uncanny wing-like structure on its back. It has two horns on the top of its head, as well as two "fangs" on the sides of its jaws. Alongside this, it also possesses light-blue stripes across its body: around its head and neck, all four legs and hind thighs, and all around its stout tail.

The Pokémon appearing out of the purple rift is mostly light purple in appearance, with the body of a theropod, and a similar set of eyes as the Pokémon beside it. On its body, it possesses stripes that are a darker shade of purple, as well as pale gray arm undersides and waist. It has round, purple-striped "plates" on its shoulders, each imbued with two pink pearls within their centers, both of which are surrounded by a gray rim. It has fin-like wings on its back, as well as gauntlet-like extensions on its arms—with purple bands of coloration on the back of its wrists. Finally, it has a long neck, a pointed white crest on the crown of its head—which extends to its fin-like wings—, two horn-like "tusks" on the sides of its jaws, as well as a powerful tail.

Their names—in order of entrance description—are Dialga and Palkia. They're both Pokémon that are often called deities by the people that have described them in Sinnoh mythology. And now they've appeared before Giovanni and the opposing Pokémon.

(National Pokédex entry #483: Dialga, the Temporal Pokémon. It is a Dragon-Type and Steel-Type Pokémon that measures in at a massive 17' 09" and weighs in at a matchingly astonishing 1505.8 lbs. A legendary Pokémon of Sinnoh. It is said that time flows when Dialga's heart beats. In a sense, it would seem plausible that the blood that runs through Dialga's cardiovascular system is time itself.)

(National Pokédex entry #484: Palkia, the Spacial Pokémon. It is a Dragon-Type and a Water-Type Pokémon that measures in at an impressive 13' 09" and wighs in at a mighty 740.8 lbs. A legendary Pokémon of Sinnoh. It is said that space becomes more stable with Palkia's every breath. In a sense, it is plausible that everything in existence exists thanks to its respiatory system.)

The rifts below them closed and dissipated, once their feet were no longer within those abnormalities in space. They gently landed back onto solid ground, and observed the current beings that they loomed tall over: Dialga ogling Giovanni and Palkia scanning Xeno Lucario and his posse.

The life that both Pokémon deities observed all shared the same thing in common: they were all flabbergasted by their sudden entrance. Everybody knew what both Pokémon were capable of, and couldn't pinpoint the key reason as to why both Dialga and Palkia decided to appear from their respective dimensions.

However, Giovanni quickly digressed from this topic and contemplated their presence, and how, if he acted decisively, this could potentially benefit him.

"(If I kill them now, and assimilate their power into my battle armor as my own without delay, I'll gain immediate mastery over space and time!)" Giovanni smiled within the visor of his helmet. "(With both traits, I'll gain decisive assets to my plans for global conquest!)"

Palkia looked away from the Pokémon group and locked its black and red eyes to the same metallically-encased man that Dialga was observing, sensing some mental hostility within him.

Giovanni's Triple Threat weapons—which are still set on Gatling Mode—quickly began to have their barrels revolve once more through powerful electric motors. The tips of the barrels were aimed at the face of Dialga, whom stared on at the human unfalteringly.

"Eat lead, deity fu—!" Giovanni's invective was quickly rendered mute by the loud, concentrated firing of his Triple Threat weapons.

As quickly as Giovanni made his attack, a rift in space opened directly between Dialga and Giovanni. The rift transported Giovanni's fired bullets into a different point in space, instantly rendering them useless once they entered and continued until their energy dissipated.

What Giovanni couldn't see—but the Pokémon below it can see—was that Palkia's eyes, as well as the pearls on its round plate-like shoulders, were emanating a light purple aura. This was a sign that its powers of spacial warping were in effect.

Dialga, from behind the rift in space that Palkia conjured, activated its respective abilities of temporal warping. Once its eyes and the diamond on its chest plate emanated a dark blue aura, Giovanni's shoulder armaments were instantly frozen in time. The fact that they both became monochrome in color was proof enough of Dialga's chronological doing.

"What the hell?" Giovanni responded when his weapons no longer did.

Palkia's spacial rift faded away, along with its aura emanation, when the bullet storm subsided. The instant that it did, Giovanni eyed a stagnant Dialga, eyeing him with red eyes that were surrounded by a dark blue aura. Its face rocked left to right slowly, as if saying "you shouldn't have done that" with its body language.

Giovanni just took this as a challenge and continued to attack, not wishing to relinquish this chance of fate for great power. With his right arm, he began to conjure a massive AURA SPHERE. And once it was the size of a Watmel Berry, he jumped towards Dialga, AURA SPHERE held above his head, aimed at the Temporal Pokémon's face.

Palkia, still eyeing Giovanni, retaliated physically. It quickly swerved and sidestepped its way directly in front of Dialga, and with its tail focused with light purple aura, swatted Giovanni with DRAGON TAIL. The Spacial Pokémon swatted him hard, as if he were an insect, sending him flying high into the sky.

Lucario saw his former superior fly higher and higher into the sky, until the last thing that could be seen of Giovanni's presence was a brief glimmer of light.

"Looks like Giovanni is blasting off again," Lucario joked at this occurrence to his friends. "Isn't he, every—?"

Lucario silenced himself abruptly when he noticed that every single one of his colleagues was frozen in time, appearing monochrome in color scheme before him.

"What in the world?" Lucario said, looking left and right briefly at his friends, before looking at both Dialga and Palkia. He eyed Dialga especially, since its temporal powers ceased after it had frozen his friends in time, meaning that if it wanted to, it could leave them that way. "What have you done to them?"

Both Legendary Pokémon look back at Lucario, the only Pokémon that was not targeted by Dialga's chronological cease. They proceed ominously forward, almost as if stalking him.

This quickly made Lucario uncomfortable.

"We've been expecting you…" Dialga said via telepathy.

"…Pokémon of Prophecy." Palkia did the same.

Lucario was made more uncomfortable by their unusual choice of actions. "Why did you stop my friends in time?" He had trouble speaking for a moment.

"…" Both Pokémon remained silent, and simply ogled the Aura Pokémon openly.

Lucario quickly took their silence as a remark that they don't care at all. This made his paws tighten into fists, sparking significantly with aura. "No response from either of you?"

Lucario's posture quickly became combative, ready to fight both Pokémon.

Both Dialga and Palkia watched on at this, unchanged in posture or facial expression.

"In that case, I'll just force you to stop stopping them."

Immediately after the Aura Pokémon spoke, he clasped both paws together, having them both spark and ignite large quantities of aura in the process. He separated his palms as the aura was gradually condensing between them into a sphere. The sphere grew larger as the aura was simultaneously condensing and expanding it, causing it to become a bright blue orb that was significantly different than his trademark AURA SPHERE technique.

Instead of AURA SPHERE, Lucario was utilizing a more powerful—albeit less accurate—technique in his ascending move set. He was using FOCUS BLAST.

Lucario launched the attack directly towards Dialga, knowing well enough the type matchup of his technique—Fighting-Type—and Dialga's attributes—Dragon-Type and Steel-Type—would work in his favor. The attack was fired straight and true, and would appear to land a direct hit on Dialga's face.

However, because of Palkia's current presence, it was there to fortify its fellow deity. The Spacial Pokémon's aura emanation resumed around its eyes and shoulder pearls, allowing it to distort space once more. With this ability, it created two rifts in space—one single portal. The first rift was placed directly in front of Dialga, where the attack would enter. And the second rift was placed behind Dialga, where the attack would leave. Both rifts were angled upward, so that the attack would be launched towards the sky, where it would be instantly negated.

Lucario's FOCUS BLAST technique, because of Palkia's superiority over the physical space, simply passed through Dialga, without so much as striking it. The attack, as it left the second rift and headed towards the sky, was immediately intercepted by Palkia, whom became airborne in order to catch it in its left hand.

With its free right hand, Palkia generated an AURA SPHERE of its own, a light purple sphere rather than the clear blue ones that Lucario can fabricate, of a size similar to Lucario's FOCUS BLAST. And with both Lucario's seized technique—as well as its respective AURA SPHERE—in hand, it fired them both simultaneously towards Lucario, through the same exact portal that it conjured in defense for Dialga.

"(Son of a…)" Lucario came close to cursing at Palkia's abilities as it saw both attacks homing in on him, before he shielded his face by crossing his arms in front of it.

The attacks were fired with enough velocity that Lucario only had just enough time to create his PROTECT bulwark, in order to render both attacks void. However, there was a price to pay with using PROTECT.

A dust cloud erupted upward, due to the explosive force that both attacks possessed, immediately blinding the entire vicinity surrounding Lucario. And before Lucario's PROTECT technique faded away on him, he resorted to utilizing his Aura Vision ability to identify the whereabouts of both Dialga and Palkia.

Lucario's bulwark faded, and he dropped his arms, lowering his guard somewhat when he noticed that Palkia remained airborne and within his sights. He also noticed that Palkia's aura dropped to normal levels, a sign that it disengaged its cosmic abilities for the moment.

However, Lucario's guard didn't disappear when he couldn't sense the presence of Dialga, whom disappeared from his sights.

It was clear to Lucario that Dialga had used its temporal powers to its advantage, having momentarily disappeared from present time and traveled briefly into the future.

"(…When are you?)" Lucario thought, attempting to lock onto Dialga's aura signature, on the exact moment that it returns to this time.

As Lucario expected, Dialga did return to this time, appearing directly behind him. However, Lucario never accounted to the potency of its temporal powers.

To begin with, when Dialga emerged as soon as time had caught up to its chronological lead, it generated a powerful expulsion of air when its body pushed on the physical space that the breathable air had enveloped. This caused the dust to violently blast away with a loud snap in the air, immediately stunning Lucario stagnant—as well as dazing his sense of hearing.

Before Lucario could react, Dialga had quickly bent its long neck down to Lucario's height, tilted its head onto its side, opened its jaws wide, and clamped down onto Lucario's torso. Its dental grip was tight on Lucario's chest plate, but not tight enough to pierce his armor—or his flesh.

It was almost as if Dialga only wanted to restrain the Aura Pokémon.

However, Lucario wasn't having any of this, and decided to take advantage of this event. Lucario turned his upper body as best as he could, so that he could face Dialga's right side of its face. He quickly planted his right palm onto Dialga's face, directly below its eye, and used FORCE PALM to shred the right side of Dialga's face. The damage that Dialga sustained onto its face immediately caused it to bite down in pain, which in turn pierced both Lucario's chest plate, as well as his abdomen.

Both Pokémon roared in pain and dripped heavily in blood from each other's struggle, Dialga's blood falling onto the floor, and Lucario's blood collecting in Dialga's throat. The damage that Lucario sustained proved too great for his nervous system to tolerate, quickly causing him to lose consciousness and fall limp in Dialga's jaws. Dialga however, with the severe lacerations on its face that it sustained, didn't so much as stagger.

However, Dialga did retch a few times at tasting Xeno's blood, but never heaved or let go of the Aura Pokémon in the process.

Before both Dialga and Palkia, a third rift in space formed on the ground, in similar fashion as to when they both appeared. However, the color of the rift was neither dark blue or light purple.

It was pitch black.

From within the rift, a third massive Pokémon emerged, firing out of the rift as if it were a rocket, rather than slowly, as both Dialga and Palkia did.

This Pokémon has a large, grey, centipede-like body, possessing six short, stout legs. It has gold claws, as well as gold bands, on its legs. It has a long, grey tail, as well as a thick black stripe running vertically along the front of its neck and continued onto its underbelly. On that same black stripe, a series of red horizontal stripes run down, stopping before reaching the underbelly. On the back of its neck, there are three gold half-rings present, their tips connected by the red horizontal stripes. And on its back, there are two large, amorphous black wings, decorated with red, conical, claw-like objects, three on each wing.

This third Pokémon descended down onto the floor once the black rift that it conjured disappeared. The black aura emanating from its eyes dispersed as it flapped its wings before slowing its descent and hitting the floor with the soles of its feet. With eyes similar to Dialga's and Palkia's, it ogled both Pokémon, as well as the Lucario that was bleeding and unconscious in Dialga's jaws.

"You've arrived…Giratina." Palkia said upon looking at the Pokémon.

(National Pokédex entry #487: Giratina, the Renegade Pokémon. It is a Dragon-Type and a Ghost-Type Pokémon that measures in at a massive 14' 09" (Altered Forme) or 22' 08" (Origin Forme) and weighs in at an earth-trembling 1653.5 lbs (Altered Forme) or 1433.0 lbs (Origin Forme). It was banished for its violence. It silently gazed upon the old world from the Distortion World. That world has given Giratina two forms: its Altered Forme and Origin Forme, both of which switch as it enters and leaves the Distortion World.)

"I am…" Giratina responded to Palkia's speech, before looking at Dialga, as well as the Lucario in its mouth. "Is that the Pokémon of Prophecy?"

"Yes it is." Dialga spoke without using its mouth, which was presently dripping blood from both itself and Lucario every other second. "I can tell just by the taste of its blood."

Palkia looked at the Aura Pokémon in Dialga's jaws, noticing how limp it had become. "You didn't kill it, did you?"

Dialga shook its head side to side, causing Lucario's limp arms, legs, and neck to do so as well. "Despite having sustained a punctured stomach, it is capable of sustaining injury far greater than what I've inflicted upon it."

Giratina began walking off towards the entrance of Spear Pillar. "I would expect as much."

Both Palkia and Dialga followed behind the Renegade Pokémon. Giratina stopped about ten feet from the entrance to Spear Pillar, and Dialga and Palkia stopped within the same distance as well. To Giratina's left, Dialga stood ready. To Giratina's right, Palkia remained on stand-by.

The three of them emanated their respective auras simultaneously—dark blue for Dialga, pitch black for Giratina, and light purple for Palkia—and created a solitary rift in space with their combined power. Each of the three Pokémon applied their specific abilities in order to create this rift in space: Dialga set the time, Palkia set the location, and Giratina set the dimension.

In doing so, the rift opened up directly above a location on a parallel Earth, set to the time of December 1st, 59 A.D., on a remote village placed in the middle of a desert and beside a coastline.

With haste, Dialga released its grasp on Xeno and tossed him into the portal. The Aura Pokémon entered the portal—equipped with the titanium-crystalline alloy battle armor that Giovanni had manufactured for him, as well as the individual Poké Balls for his party and himself—and descended downward towards the remote village, freefalling because of the height that they conjured the portal for it to remain unnoticed to the human citizens below.

The rift in space immediately vanished when all three Pokémon negated their powers.

"The time has come to fulfill the prophecy." Dialga began.

"Xeno, you are the only one who has the power to do so." Palkia continued.

"And stop it from falling into the Void of the Dark One." Giratina concluded.

"No matter how strong or smart you are, there's always somebody stronger or smarter, and when you run into somebody whose stronger and smarter than anybody, you think, 'This is a god. This is perfection'." —Orson Scott Card (412) (Xenocide)

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