A New Life Through The Eyes Of Kanto: An Autobiography

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Kingdra swam by herself, slowly moving along the water with her head lowered slightly, most likely in thought. On occasion, she would stop to gaze up at the sun.

Charmeleon shot fire at Dugtrio while Dugtrio dug under the sand, avoiding the attacks, and then pop back up nearby.

Primeape frantically leaped into the air, swinging viciously at Hoothoot who flew just out of reach of the feisty monkey’s grasp.

Butterfree sat atop a tree with a longing look in its eyes and depressing, droopy antennae.

Aside from Kingdra and Butterfree, everybody seemed to be in a good mood.

Kingdra was presumably thinking about her Trainer, Drock.

It had been a few days since I had gotten her in that trade, and my Pokemon and I did all we could to make her feel comfortable. She wasn’t opening up much. She just preferred spending time alone. Whenever any of my other Pokemon would try to talk to her, she would look at me pleadingly and seemed to beg for me to return her to the solitude of her Poke Ball, which I would grant her. At first, I encouraged her to not be so shy, but I could see from her actions and pleading cries how much she didn’t want to be around the others, and I had to give in. She deserved to be alone if she wanted to be.

Butterfree had just recently begun acting strange, and the reason was clear.

I walked up and stopped just a few feet from its tree. “Hey, Butterfree,” I smiled warmly.

Butterfree slowly turned its head over to me. “Freee...”

“Do you miss Beedrill?” I asked quietly.

Butterfree’s eyes began to tear up. “Freeeee…” Butterfree looked away, a tear falling out from each eye.

“I’m sorry, Butterfree.” My own eyes were beginning to water, now. “I’m sorry Beedrill isn’t with us anymore. And I’m also sorry I didn’t even realize how close you two were. He was a good friend, huh? You both had similarities being Bug types.”Butterfree nodded. “Freeee, Freee…”

“Butterfree, I hope that one day, we will meet our friend again,” I said hopefully. “I cared for Beedrill, too, you know. I really did love him a lot. He was a great friend to all of us.”

Butterfree just nodded but didn’t say anything.

“Butterfree, won’t you come down?” I suggested. “Come down and play with all of your friends. We all are your friends. We all love you a lot.” My lips pressed together tightly as I took a deep breath. Inhaling once again for bravery, pushing aside the fear within, I slowly raised my arm up and extended it towards Butterfree.

Butterfree’s antennae perked up a little bit as it stared at my arm. It pushed off from the branch it was holding onto with its feet and flapped its huge wings at me.

I flinched and backed up a step, but held a determined face and stood still as the giant insect flew closer to me, finally landing on my arm. Forcing a smile, I tightened my arm as I held up the fairly weighty creature. Taking another deep breath, I turned to walk back to the other Pokemon playing in the sand. I came to a quick stop when I realized they all were staring at us.

Even Kingdra.

Charmeleon, Dugtrio, Primeape, and Hoothoot were all smiling and began to cheer.

Butterfree’s antennae perked up even higher and it leaped from my arm and towards the other Pokemon.

I let out a silent breath of relief as I watched the Bug and the others.

The cheering grew louder and Butterfree happily flew above its friends. Hoothoot joined Butterfree in the air and they flew around in circles as the others danced beneath them.

Kingdra watched silently for a moment before turning around and swimming out a little farther away.

I smiled at my Pokemon, brushing off the spot where Butterfree had been on my arm, but seeing Kingdra brought me down again. Poor thing, I thought. She’ll get over it though. I’ll show her everything is okay with her on my team. I’m only worried about how my Beedrill will be taken care of. I hope he’ll be okay and that she’ll tell Beedrill how much I love him, or at least explain what happened.

A huge wave suddenly appeared from out of the ocean, directly in front of Kingdra!“DOOOOOO!!” Kingdra cried out, staring at the wave in terror.

“Kingdra!” I called out, running for her.

“DOOOO!!” Kingdra wailed as the wave crashed down upon her.

Me and my Pokemon watched in shock.

The waters were still again, but Kingdra was nowhere in sight.

I ran up to the water and my Pokemon followed close behind, Charmeleon and Dugtrio staying further behind than the others. “Kingdra!!” I shouted. “Kingdra!!

The ground began to shake roughly.

I was instantly dropped, along with my Pokemon, Butterfree and Hoothoot remaining in the air.

“DOOOOOOOOOO!!” Kingdra screamed as she flew out from the depths of the water.

“KINGDRA!” I tried to stand up, grab a Poke Ball to return Kingdra, or do anything at all of my own free will, but I couldn’t. The ongoing earthquake made it impossible for me to control myself. I was tossed and rolling all over the place helplessly. “HELP! EARTHQUAKE!” I screamed to no one. I was all alone other than my Pokemon.

Kingdra fell hard in the sand and began bouncing harshly, tossed up and down by the earthquake.

My Pokemon were seemingly made of rubber as they dribbled around, bringing sand up into the air, crying out for help.

Dugtrio was stuck in the sand but sliding through it at an uncontrolled pace.

Only Hoothoot and Butterfree seemed to be alright, hovering over us all, watching with fear.

I screamed, unable to do anything else, unsure of what was going on or why.

With a loud SPLASH! a huge creature leaped from the waters, high into the air. It came down onto the water with an enormous crash and a huge wave lifted high before it came down upon us.

“CHAAAAAAARRRRR!!” I heard Charmeleon’s pain.

I coughed and sputtered as the water went up my nose and in my mouth. My now drenched body gave a worthless shake and I wiped my eyes, regretting it instantly as there was sand stuck to me. I shook my head head and squinted over at my Pokemon. “Charmeleon!” I stood up, simultaneously realizing that the earthquake had come to a stop.

All of the Pokemon, Butterfree and Hoothoot included, got hit by the powerful, stinging wave and were all lying on the ground in a daze.

Charmeleon was completely unconscious, his tail flame really low.

“Return!” I said, holding out Charmeleon’s Poke Ball, and I ran to the others. “Dugtrio, you too!” Dugtrio was also knocked out, weakened by the water.

My other Pokemon were all now beginning to stand up, shaking off the water that had soaked them.

Butterfree flew up into the air, somehow its wings already entirely dry.

Hoothoot shook himself off and seemed upset by his new wet condition.

Primeape, looking out towards the water, let out a fierce yell.

Kingdra got up and looked out in confusion to the sea.

I turned to see a little blue fish staring at us angrily.

Whiscash. The Whiskers Pokemon and the evolved form of Barboach. They eat anything alive that they can manage to fit in their gaping mouths. Their diet consists of whatever is nearby at the moment. Wild Whiscash are not beyond eating the Poke Ball a Trainer may use to try to capture them.

“Whiscash,” I repeated.

“CAAAASH!!” Whiscash yelled before another earthquake started up again.

I was thrown off balance and fell into the sand.

My other land bound Pokemon were also thrown back by the sudden attack.

I struggled to gather myself and stop being forced to move by the constant rocking, but it was too much to handle. “What’s going on?” I screamed angrily. Was Whiscash causing this? Was it purposely attacking us? Why?

“Whiscash Whiscash!” Whiscash continued as the ground rumbled harder than ever.

I was getting infuriated by this point. This Pokemon was purposely using an Earthquake attack on us! “Whiscash, stop it!”

“WHISCASH!!!”

My head was now throbbing and I couldn’t see straight. Everything was just bouncing around me. The trees, the sand, my Pokemon, the water, even Whiscash itself, were all bouncing from my point of view.

My Pokemon were all screaming and there was nothing I could do to save them.

The loud noise that came next made me scream out in agony as my head rang. I couldn’t tell where it was coming from or what it was, but it was slicing through my head like a sword. I was able to raise my hands to cover my ears, realizing the Earthquake had stopped again. Groaning, my eyes closed as I waited for my body to settle down, I just laid in the sand, wondering what was coming next, hoping I could at least get to catch my breath before something worse occurred. Slowly, my eyes opened and I saw Primeape standing a few feet away from me. “Primeape...?” I lowered my hands from my head.

Butterfree was fluttering back and forth in the air, also watching me.

Hoothoot was standing on one foot, shaking his head frantically.

Kingdra look exhausted lying in the sand, breathing hard, her eyes focused elsewhere.

I couldn’t see Whiscash anymore. Shakily, I managed to stand up, and Primeape immediately jumped up and down in joy and leaped into my arms. My feet dug into the sand and my legs bent slightly, stiffening to balance itself to prevent me from getting knocked over by Primeape’s sudden charge. “Was that you using Screech?” I guessed, laughing lightly.

“Prime, Primeape!” he said happily.

“You’re a real lifesaver, there!” I said gratefully, pulling him into a big hug. “Thank you!”

“Ape! Ape! Priiiimeape ape ape!” Primeape said excitedly, swinging from my neck, which hurt me a bit, before leaping into the air and landing on my back.

“OW!” I fell under Primeape’s weight, face first into the sand as he happily jumped up and down on my back, unaware of the pain he was giving me. “GET O-PLEH!!!” I was muffled by the sand that got into my mouth.

Primeape didn’t seem to notice and kept jumping up and down.

I reached my arm up and swatted at Primeape.

He finally got the picture and leaped off me.

I pushed myself up and spit out repeatedly before letting out a sigh. “What a day.” I got up after a while and turned to my Pokemon. “You guys okay?”Kingdra nodded slowly, positioning herself up on the sand, looking down at it curiously.

Primeape started bouncing around randomly all over the place.

Butterfree flew in circles above our heads, rising higher into the air.

Hoothoot looked up at it from the ground.

I turned back to the now quiet waters. I guess I should get out of here before that crazy Pokemon makes a return, I thought. “Alright, everybody!” I said to my Pokemon. Before I could continue, another rumble came from beneath my feet.

“Hooooot!” Hoothoot flew up quickly.

“Oh, no!” Before I could do anything, the rumbling increased in intensity and I was in the sand again, bouncing from the force rocking me.

My Pokemon cried out as they too were tossed onto the ground and thrown everywhere.

“FREEEEE!” I heard Butterfree scream from above.

“HOOOOOT!” Hoothoot called out with Butterfree.

It wasn’t until the Earthquake ended that I was able to see clearly again and saw Butterfree flying towards Whiscash, screaming out with fury.

“Butterfree!” I called out to it.

Hoothoot was right behind it.

Whiscash dove underwater and a huge wave appeared right after. The Water Pokemon was in the wave, staring ahead with determination as it used Surf attack. The wave hit Butterfree and Hoothoot as well as smashing down upon me and my other Pokemon.

I gasped from the shock and stinging pain the wave brought.

Whiscash was now sitting several feet away from me in the sand.

My other Pokemon laid motionless, exhausted from the encounter with this angry Pokemon.

“What do you want from us?” I demanded angrily.

“WHIIIIIIIIIIIISCASH!!” Its tail glowed light blue. Whiscash leaped high into the air and flew right at me, a swirl of water spiraling around its tail.

My eyes widened in shock as the enormous fish came down upon me and turned in midair, its Aqua Tail attack headed towards me. I raised my hands to try and block the attack, but the hit forced my hands away and Whiscash’s tail slammed right into my chest. My breath was taken from me instantly and I sailed through the air, stars flashing in front of my eyes. My back crashed into something, but I wasn’t sure what. I may have landed back in the sand, or crashed into a tree, or even fell in the water. My surroundings were foreign to me. All I knew was that I could no longer breathe. No matter how hard I tried to get air into my lungs, it was as if I had forgotten how to inhale. All of my energy was taken.

The sound of something bouncing through the sand, approaching me quickly, brought a feeling of awareness to me that I was lacking. I think it was the fear of knowing Whiscash was what was coming that jump started my body. I found myself breathing hard, but breathing. My eyes repeatedly blinked, trying to see clearly through the bright lights that were blinding me and, although it was a struggle, I managed to sit up slightly.

Whiscash looked ready to give me another good slap with its tail as it proceeded at me, bouncing hard through the sand.

I couldn’t even try to escape as my weary, defeated body continuing to struggle for air.

Whiscash was getting closer by the second. Closer. Closer. Right next to me. Whiscash’s whiskers suddenly moved towards me.

My eyes widened in shock. I inhaled and immediately burst out laughing!

Whiscash’s whiskers were tickling me!

Nothing was funny about this at all, but those whiskers were working me and I couldn’t stop laughing! I tried to crawl away from Whiscash, but it just bounced along with me wherever I went and continued making me laugh hard. I grabbed the whiskers and tried to get them away from me, but I could only grab a portion of them while the rest of the long, flexible whiskers freely continued to tickle me. Tears began rolling down my cheeks as I rolled and laughed in the sand. My eyes were closed against the sun in my face as I laughed harder and louder, gasping in and out for air, desperate to stop. My face began to hurt from smiling so much. My fists were pounding at the sand, cackling as if the greatest joke of all time had been spoken.

With an explosive noise and a huge hit at my stomach, I was lifted into the air and dropped strongly. The wind was taken from me. My arms wrapped around my sore stomach and that was when I felt and saw the disgusting brown gunk. Oh, this sick... I thought as I groaned out loud. This better be some mud attack. Trying to get up was a lie. There was nothing I could do for myself. Even lying still was a chore. Being a Pokemon is like this? I pondered. This is what they go through in battle? They’re a lot stronger than I am. I couldn’t live a life like this. I’m about to give up right now. But I can’t, yet. I have to save my Pokemon.

Whiscash bounced across the sand towards me as I struggled to get myself to at least my knees.

My hands became fists as I glared at the charging Whiscash. “What do you want from me?! Seriously! WHY ARE YOU ATTACKING ME?” Screaming took out more energy from me than it should have. I looked away from Whiscash and gasped. “No.”Primeape, Butterfree, Kingdra, and Hoothoot were splattered out all over the sand, all of them beaten up and motionless.

Ignoring the dangerous Pokemon before me, I crawled over to my worn out friends in the distance.

Whiscash let out a roar as I turned from it.

I was throbbing all over, each movement of my body rippling throughout me and causing new pains, all while this miniwhale was hunting me down for no given reason. I didn’t care about any of that. I have to get to them, I pushed myself on, my eyes on my Pokemon. I have to save them. Then I can save myself. I looked back to see Whiscash as it got closer.

It opened its mouth and a blue ball of energy formed in front of it. The Pokemon shot the ball forward and it hit me.

I was surrounded by nothing but water, and I choked, panicking from the underwater feeling as I struggled not to inhale. In this world, there was the oddest feeling of being slapped repeatedly by water waves over and over again. When the attack finally ended, I was suddenly able to breathe and was gasping, staring at a scarily movinging sky. I give up, I conceded. I’m sorry everybody. I was dizzy. Confused. Yearning to throw up. The swimming sky made me sick. I heard the familiar stomping of Whiscash moving towards me. Just kill me, I sighed tiredly. I can’t fight. I give up. This pain isn’t worth it anymore. End my life here. Stop toying with me. Just finish me off. It hurt me deep inside to want to give up like this. I didn’t want it to end this way, but the feeling in my stomach. The feeling in my head. I had no idea what was wrong with me but I knew it had to do with that attack I just took. I had the biggest urge to just repeatedly beat myself over the head with a bat. My eyes closed tightly and tears ran down my cheeks. I felt like such a failure. A loser. I had failed everybody. Before I had the chance to dwell on this further, the spinning, dizzy feeling faded away, and just a little bit of strength returned to my body. It was enough to get me to open my eyes and the desire to sit up inspired me to do just that. Nothing was spinning anymore.

Something worse was happening.

Whiscash’s eyes and head glowed blue. It then flew straight for me like a giant bullet!

I swiftly laid flat like a board on my back and narrowly managed to dodge the Zen Headbutt attack.

Whiscash flew right over my head, close enough that I could feel the wind from its body as it flew over me and kept going.

I instantly jumped up and grabbed my Poke Balls.

My Pokemon were all sitting up now, rubbing their heads, stretching out and looking around through squinted eyes.

“RETURN!” I tried to recall Butterfree, Primeape, Hoothoot and Kingdra.

But they all leaped out of the way of the red beams calling them back in. They shook their heads and glared at me.

“Get back in!” I ordered. We can get away now!” I tried returning them again, but they all jumped out of the way, Hoothoot and Butterfree flying into the sky. “Get back here!”

The two remaining Poke Balls on my belt suddenly shot out a white beam and in seconds, Charmeleon and Dugtrio, both looking exhausted, appeared with determined faces.

“What the hell do you guys think you’re doing?!” My patience was running short, fast. “Get inside the damn ball!” I tried once more to retreat everybody, but they all leaped away from the beam and shook their heads.

“MEEEEEEEEEL!!” Charmeleon raged. His jaws opened and he used Flamethrower right at me!

Whoa!” I leaped out of the way only to see what Charmeleon was really doing.

His flames were aiming above me, at Whiscash, who was aiming to attack me again! It would’ve hit me right in the back with Zen Headbutt had Charmeleon not used Flamethrower to interfere!

Whiscash wailed out as it fell down.

Charmeleon shakily kneeled down, completely wiped out of energy, but kept his eyes on Whiscash.

“CAAAAASHHH!!” Whiscash opened its mouth and letting out an Ice Beam at Charmeleon.

“CHAAAAR-” Charmeleon opened his mouth and tried to shoot out some fire but ended up choking. His tail flame was dim and looked like it could go out with a strong enough gust of wind.

“Charmeleon!” I returned Charmeleon to his Poke Ball.

The Ice Beam hit where Charmeleon had just been standing, freezing over a small portion of the sand. My face went serious at Whiscash as I clipped Charmeleon’s Poke Ball to my belt. “If you won’t explain why you’re attacking us, then I guess we’ll just have to take you down!”With a loud cry, Hoothoot flew forward at Whiscash.

Whiscash shot Ice Beam attacks at Hoothoot, trying to hit Hoothoot’s weakness as a Flying type Pokemon, but Hoothoot dodged the attacks swiftly, flying in low to hit with Peck attack.

Two rings of blue light circled around Whiscash’s body. The rings began to glow white and formed the shape of several white rocks. The white color faded to gray and the shards all flew directly at Hoothoot.

Hoothoot was completely overwhelmed as the attack hit hard and with a loud cry, he collapsed.

“Hoothoot!” I returned him to his Poke Ball. “This isn’t over yet!” I warned Whiscash.Before I could decide on another Pokemon, Primeape leaped over my head with an shrill shout and sent a Karate Chop directly to Whiscash’s head. Whiscash was now helpless as my crazed Pokemon began to deliver blow after blow to it.

Karate Chop, Low Kick, Assurance. Primeape was throwing punches and kicks endlessly to Whiscash’s visible displeasure.

Whiscash suddenly opened its mouth and let out a powerful blast of water. Steam rose from the water and Primeape was screaming, running back and forth.

“Primeape?” I watched, confused. “Wait… This move is... um… Boiling something…? Piping Hot…? No. Wait, Scald! It’s Scald attack!” Scald was the only hot water move that could also cause a Burn on the Pokemon taking the hit, lowering his Attack power and inflicting further damage as time went on.

Whiscash watched Primeape while I called for him to try to relax and fight.

Primeape started to slow down his hyper running, and that was when Whiscash took action. Its forehead and eyes glowed blue and it jumped into the air, colliding into Primeape with Zen Headbutt.

“PRIIIIIIIME!!!” Primeape rolled through the sand and finally splashed hard into the water. My Pokemon wasn’t visible at first, but bubbles appeared near the top and his body floated up.

I turned to Primeape but turned back to Whiscash, not wanting to turn my back on the dangerous opponent. Keeping my eye on the blue menace, I ran backwards to get closer to Primeape, and then returned him to his Poke Ball. “Thanks a lot, Primeape.”

The situation was looking bad.

If only we had a Grass move, I thought. It’d be extra strong against a Pokemon like Whiscash which is Water and Ground, both types which are weak to Grass damage. I adjusted my cap firmly onto my head, not wanting to give up or lower my spirits any. We had to believe if we wanted to get out of this one. I zipped my jacket up tighter. Zipping up my jacket didn’t help me feel any warmer, since I was cold from the wetness of the water I was soaked in. I grabbed an empty Poke Ball from my pocket. I may have to capture this monster, I decided. I have to. It’s my job as a Pokemon Trainer. It’s my promise to catch every last Pokemon! “This is far from over, Whiscash!”

Whiscash frowned deeper and let out an Ice Beam at my Dugtrio.

“TRIOOOOOO!” My already badly injured Dugtrio slumped over each other in defeat.

“Hey! He wasn’t even attacking you!!” I raged. “What is the hell wrong with you??!” I retreated my Dugtrio. As I attached Dugtrio’s Poke Ball to my belt, my hand bumped into my Pokedex.

It was as if a Geodude had fallen from the skies and landed on my head.

My Pokedex!

I pulled out the Pokedex and pointed it eagerly at Whiscash.

Whiscash. The Whiskers Pokemon and the evolved form of Barboach. This species of Pokemon are extremely territorial. They can be selfish in their claim of territory and take over entire ponds and lakes and claim them as their own. Once they feel their territory has been violated, they will drive out intruders at any cost.

My heart came to a stop.

Whiscash let out a roar and opened its mouth wide. An orange beam fired from Whiscash’s mouth. An attack I didn’t recognize.

“DOOO!” Kingdra leaped forward in front of the beam and took the hit.

“NOOO, KINGDRA!” I ran to her, but I didn’t have to. Kingdra was flung at me like a rocket and knocked me over as I caught her. I rolled with her in my arms, stopping our tumble and gazing down at her. Despite the strong hit I took catching Kingdra, I was still well enough, tolerating whatever injury I’d sustained.

Kingdra was completely knocked out.

“Kingdra, you leaped in front of that attack… for me?” I asked her.

She didn’t budge.

“We’ll make it out of here,” I told her. “We’re almost there!” I pulled her closer to me and hugged her tightly before returning her to her Poke Ball.

To my surprise, Whiscash was now breathing heavily.

Could it be tired out? I wondered.

Hyper Beam. The user of this incredibly powerful move must take time to recharge its energy afterwards.

I stared down at my Pokedex, completely forgetting I even had it in my hand still.

Butterfree and I exchanged glances as the Pokedex’s words sat with us.

My eyes widened in realization. “RUUUN!” I bellowed, and ran as fast as I could.

Butterfree easily flew past me.

“KEEP RUNNING!!” I urged. “DON’T STOP!!!” I didn’t know where we were running, but we had to find a way out of Whiscash’s territory, however far this Whiscash had decided to make its territory include.

Whiscash needed a moment to recover its energy. This was the perfect chance for us to get out of here.

A moment later, I heard a loud splash. I kept running, but looked behind me.

Whiscash was gone.

“Wait,” I choked out, stopping to look around. Where’s Whiscash? Did we get out of its territory? Were we safe now?

Bubbles started to form near the surface of the water near me.

I took in a sharp breath. “GOOO!” I screamed as Whiscash appeared from the water and let loose another Hyper Beam. “GOGOGOGO!!” I screamed to the enormous Lepidoptera who was flying faster than I could wish to run.

It was mere seconds later before I saw, out the corner of my eye, Whiscash swimming in the water, right next to where I was running, effortlessly. Its mouth opened wide and I saw the Hyper Beam building up and aiming for me again.

I screamed.

I continued to scream.

My scream grew louder as I tripped in the sand.

I fell on my face and didn’t move. There was no time to anymore. It was over. I held my breath and awaited the blast.

I waited.

Waited.

And waited.

I was afraid to open my eyes for fear that the attack would hit me just as I about to check to see what was going on. So I continued to wait. When nothing continued to happen, I finally, slowly, cautiously, opened my eyes and turned to Whiscash.

It wasn’t there.

I looked around the beach.

Whiscash wasn’t around.

Butterfree was hovering in place, gently flapping its wings, looking out to sea.

Getting up, I dusted myself off and spun around slowly in a complete circle.

No one here but me and Butterfree.

I turned to Butterfree. “I think we made it,” I said to it in shock.

“Free Freeee.” Butterfree did some sort of dance in the air.

“Well, thanks for sticking it out with me, Butterfree,” I said gratefully. “How about you stay in your Poke Ball for now where it’s safe?”“Freeeee,” Butterfree nodded.

I held out its Poke Ball and returned it inside. Wow, I thought with a sigh. We just barely made it. Ahead of me was an endless stretch of sand. How much longer does this lead? I wondered. I really could use some help at a Pokemon Center. I need to get to Celadon City. All of my Pokemon are a wreck. I clipped Butterfree’s ball to my belt and smiled at the six Poke Balls. Thank you, I thought, rubbing my hand along them all. Just hang on tight. I’ll make sure we reach Celadon City soon. I remembered Kingdra leaping in front of Hyper Beam to protect me... And Kingdra, I thought as my eyes started tearing up with appreciation. Thank you. Thank you, Kingdra. I can’t believe you did that... for me.

I was ready to continue walking when I saw the stone in the sand. That’s what I tripped over, I thought to myself. A stone. I bent over and tried to pull it out of the sand, being careful to try not to cross over into the Whiscash’s thin territory line, but it didn’t budge. I dug some of the sand away from it and tried to pull it out again, but it remained stuck. As I removed more sand from around the stone, I spotted a hole in it. I stuck my finger in the hole and tried to pull the stone out by that means, but it didn’t help at all. This was now frustrating me for some reason. It was just a rock, but I felt the urge to finish what I had started now. Digging around it seemed like the best plan to free the object, so I proceeded grabbing up more sand, getting further and further down. The stone was a lot larger than I had thought. And it was starting to look familiar the further down I dug.

With every several seconds or so of digging, this rock was ringing bells in my memory.

Until...

I gasped long, loud, and hard, falling back in the sand, scrambling away in fear and then wiping my hands on my jeans. My breathing was funny, a struggle to get in adequate amounts of air. My heart was kicking down the door in my chest like it was trying to get out.

I stared down at the object in horror until I managed to get to my shaky legs and run, falling repeatedly because my legs couldn’t hold me up out of fear. I kept scrambling back to my feet, continuously attempting to run.

I didn’t look back at the human skull that was more than halfway dug out of the sand, staring at me.

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