After Erica had been declared the new champion of Kalos, she promptly returned to her home town to see her mother and her neighbors. When she came there, a neighborhood party was held for the girl.
Her mother had heard the news before hand and decided that it would be best to hold a party for the successful trainer. Family members, neighbors, even Shauna, Trevor, and Tierno were all there.
The party went on for several hours before Erica crashed into her bed. She was exhausted from all that fun, and so were her pokemon. Putting all the pokeballs on the dresser, the blond could easily tell that her friends were tired.
"Thank you so much everyone." Whispered the teenager.
After the party, Brett and Keith had excused themselves to explore Kalos for the time being. They promised Erica that they would be back the next morning to take her to Lumiose city. Because tomorrow, Erica and her friends would walk down a red carpet for their efforts against Team Flare.
"To be honest, I'm not too sure that I want all that attention." Whispered the blond to herself as she changed into a t-shirt and a pair of shorts to sleep in.
Since everyone else in the household was already asleep, Erica decided that maybe it was time for her to turn in for the night as well. As she sat down on her bed, she couldn't help but admire the medallion that she earned. She held up the rare stone from Shalour bay with it.
'These look so pretty together.' Though the blond. Curiosity struck her mind as she wondered what the medallions from the other champions looked like, she decided it might be better to ask them later.
The following day, the ceremony was held in Lumiose city. Erica and her friends gathered as the star attractions for stopping Team Flare from destroying the world.
As the crowd watched Erica, Shauna, Trevor, and Tierno walked across the giant red carpet, they continuously cheered. At the end, Professor Sycamore along with his assistants, and the foreign champions awaited the heroes.
Once they reached the end, the professor handed each of them a badge. It resembled Prism Tower. Erica took the badge and pinned it onto her shirt. Brett and Keith walked over to Erica.
"All these people came out today to celebrate your heroism." Said Keith.
"You've really become a hero, and made a great name for yourself." Commented Brett as he petted Erica on the head. She pushed his hand off with a happy laugh.
"Well, I don't think I would've gotten this far without you two." Thanked Erica.
Amongst the giant crowd stood AZ, he watched the person who tried to teach him about forgiveness. Silently, he walked closer to her. It seemed almost too strange that nobody was paying him any attention, or stopping him.
As he came closer, Erica caught attention of him. Her face grew from cheery to surprise. In all truthfulness, she never expected to see him ever again.
"Battle me..." Demanded AZ silently. Erica walked closer towards him with her face now bearing a serious look.
"Give me a reason." Demanded the blond in return.
The two seemed to stare down for a few seconds. However, the giant gave in to her demand.
"I want to know what a trainer is..." Erica tried to keep her serious face, but she smiled and shook her head. She pulled out five of her pokeballs and handed them to her friends.
"Alright then, I accept your challenge." She threw out the pokeball that contained Venus.
Moments after releasing her pokemon, Erica mega evolved the green dinosaur. This time however, instead of touching the mega stone Erica was able to activate it with her thoughts. Off to the side, Brett and Keith shared the same interested look.
Despite the phenomenon he just witnessed, AZ didn't appear fazed in the slightest of ways. He reached into his bag and threw out a Torkoal.
"Use bulldoze." Venus slammed the ground, easily defeating the fire tortoise. At first, Erica thought that she just got lucky with that first hit.
The silent man threw out another pokeball, this time containing a Golurk.
"Use petal blizzard." The colored petals assaulted the stone giant, easily defeating it. This time the heroine realized why the other pokemon were not putting up much of a fight.
AZ pulled out one final pokeball and sent out a Sigilyph.
"And finish with double edge." The dinosaur surprisingly leaped into the air and slammed the pyschic-flying type.
Erica retrieved her pokemon and turned back to face AZ.
"That's what a trainer is, more than that, its what a person is. Taking on your mistakes and learning from them. You wanted to lose, did you AZ?" As an answer, the giant smiled and nodded.
"Yes. I thought that if I kept wandering like this I would never know what a bond is." He looked back to the crowd around them as he surveyed them. "You seemed to portray hope because of your friends and partners." He turned back to the champion with a happy smile.
"Thank you. I am now free. Free from that part of me mired with sorrow."
He then looked up to the sky and noticed as a pokemon started descending. Erica looked up in the same direction as he did. The pokemon that was descending was a Floette, but it looked different than others. It was blue and red and had a magnificent flower.
AZ watched as the pokemon came closer into view, and his face started to come into shock. The Floette came down to him, and the silent giant started to fall to his knees as he tried to catch the fairy.
"Floette...it's been three thousand years..."
Brett and Keith walked up to Erica. She turned back to them with a very happy and grateful smile, because she knew exactly how this came to be.
"I think that his pokemon was waiting for him to return to being the man he was before the war." Explained the girl as she turned back to the reunion.
The setting was so beautiful, it seemed as if the world could forget all hatred and sadness for this one day, for this one moment. Erica could feel her soul illuminate with happiness. Her soul and determination had succeeded in defeating a despair of three thousand years.
The city of Lumiose spent the next couple of hours celebrating in the safety of Kalos. Because of all the special cake contests, dances, and kids plastering Magikarp cut-outs on peoples backs, there was a lot of fun to be had. Erica couldn't help but take part in with all the fun.
Despite it being fun the time moved against the festivities. When it was time to move on, Erica decided to move down the route south outside of Lumiose. Brett and Keith were trekking with her.
"You did a great thing back there Erica." Commented Keith. Erica couldn't help but blush at her teacher's comment.
"Even more than just helping AZ forgive himself, you showed great skill." Continued the brown haired boy. The blond turned around with a happily surprised face.
"You really think so?" He smiled and nodded.
"You really did do well out there. Speaking of which, how did you pull off that mega evolution?" Asked Brett. Shrugging her shoulders and giving a sheepish smile was the best response that Erica could give.
"It is just something that comes naturally, I guess. What exactly are you two going to do now?" Asked the blond. She was able to ask that because she had been able to take on challenges without her friends being right behind her.
She had grown past her fear of being alone.
"There are several things about Kalos that I'd like to research before I return to Kanto." Answered Keith as he did his signature glasses push up.
"And I guess that I'll do a little adventuring. Maybe a battle, or a hundred before I head back to Johto." Stated Brett as he looked off to the side. After hearing that, another question came to Erica.
"Say, how much longer do you guys have here before you have to go back to your regions?" Keith cupped his chin and looked up to the sky to figure out the answer.
"I'd say about a month at best. Right?" He turned over to his rival who nodded in return. That news came harder than expected to Erica, that meant that she only had so much longer that she could meet with these two before they had to go back.
She would still get a chance to meet with them every once in a while, but saying goodbye still hurt badly.
Memories of times that she had to spend with her friends on this journey started to come to her. No sooner than that did she remember when Keith curbstomped her. But as Erica remembered that battle, she also remembered how sad she felt about losing so bad.
'That was such a bad loss.' Thought Erica. The female trainer was suddenly very confident in herself. The reason was because even when odds where stacked against her, her spirit never gave in.
An overwhelming desire started to form inside Erica. Even though she couldn't figure out what the driving force was, she knew that this was the desire to become better than what she was at the moment. She turned around and faced Brett with a pokeball in her hand.
"Brett, I challenge you."
Keith showed surprise, and apparently so did Brett. The black haired boy cleaned out his ear and repositioned it to hear her.
"Come again, did you say that you want to battle me?" Asked Brett comically.
"Yes I did. A one-on-one mega battle." Answered the blond.
Brett gave off his battle thirsty smile. He pulled out Tyco's pokeball. "Very well. I, The Blazing Fighter, accept your challenge!"
Keith took this opportunity to back away for his own safety. Both trainers released their Kanto starters and mega evolved them. The blond succeeded in repeating her trick from earlier while the black haired boy had to use the classic method.
"Venus, use leech seed!"
"Tyco, use dark pulse." The giant turtle launched the dark energy circle that knocked away the seeds before they could land on him.
Erica's confidence started to dull away. "Quick, use petal blizzard!"
A tornado spun around and caught the Blastoise in it. When the flower petals blew away, the closed up the shell of the pokemon was shown.
'It used protect.' Thought Erica as Tyco unfolded out of it.
"Use sludge bomb." Venus launched the poisonous bomb from its mouth.
"Counter with water pulse." The blastoise launched rings of water and destroyed the giant bomb.
"Now topple that Venusaur over!" Tyco spun forward and pushed Venus on her side. Erica didn't react fast enough, which cost her the battle.
"Hit'em with ice beam, water pulse, and dark pulse!" The water type launched three different attacks, each one from a different cannon. As the attacks closed in and caused an explosion. Erica was so caught off by the explosion that she stumbled back, and from her pocket her rare stone fell out.
Venus was defeated and Erica had lost. Erica regretfully retrieved her defeated pokemon.
'I still can't win against them...even after all this.' Thought the protagonist as she looked to the ground glumly.
Brett was happy about his victory, but as he saw the sadness that was plastered on the face of his opponent he knew that he needed to help her.
"You're not just gonna let this get you down, are you?" Asked the Johto champion as he walked over. That question didn't do much to help her out, but she could feel that same feeling from earlier, like she hadn't given up yet. The Kanto Champion walked over and decided to vouch in this.
"I know that your tenacity hasn't let you slump down and give up." That word suddenly gave her the answer that she needed. A tenacious spirit had been pushing her not to give up, that's what drove her to battle against Brett. Her expression cheered up as her resolve cleared up.
"I'm not going to let this get me down. I'm going to spend some time training personally. I promise that when we meet back again, I'll be even better." She reached down and picked up her rare orb.
"How long are you going to train?" Asked Keith.
"I don't know, but I'm sure that it'll be over with before you two have to leave." Answered the blond as she turned back to face them. Both of the trainers gave her a nod of affirmation. She returned it with a promising smile.
Erica turned in the opposite direction to separate from them and started to trek away. As the champion continued to walk away, she looked down at the orb and her champion medallion in her other hand.
'...Yeah...it's a promise...'