From: Rob ( Subject: [PW!] Bird Brain Newsgroups: Date: 2001-05-12 16:41:16 PST Falkner sighs, then proceeds to say something he's said time and time again, "Congratulations, you just won a Zephyr Badge." He hands the reward to the person who just beat him automatically, without even looking directly at her, then goes back to his edge of the rooftop battle arena to sulk. He faces the Hoothoot on his shoulder and complains, "I so rarely win Gym battles, Hoothoot, and it's getting on my nerves... How could my Dodrio lose to a Wooper? A WOOPER! The only girl who's ever made me feel like a man is that one girl I beat yesterday. Why hasn't she called me?! WHY?! I might never see her agai-" "Hoot!" Falkner's Hoothoot interjects, motioning with his head towards the girl who has just climbed up to the arena - the one who has paused to talk with the girl who's on her way out. The girl is Sarah. When Falkner sees Sarah, his eyes brighten and he stands up straight, trying to listen unsuccessfully to what she's talking about with the girl who has just beat him... "R-roxie!" Sarah takes a step back, putting one arm in front of her Mareep so that she isn't attacked again, "Wh-what are y-you doing here?" Roxie, the leather-clad biker girl, extends her hand outward to show off her new Zephyr Badge, "Wow, it seems that country blondes aren't any smarter than city blondes. I came here to win this Zephyr Badge, of course. It was easy enough. Falkner's quite the loser. I'd be surprised if anyone has ever lost to him." Not wanting to reveal that she's lost to Falkner once before, Sarah changes the subject, "How did y-you... get here? So fast, I mean?" "My last bike blew up for some reason on my way to New Bark." Roxie narrows one eye at Sarah, wondering if the country girl was responsible for that set back. She ultimately decides that she couldn't possibly be since the shepherdess seems like such a goodie-two-sandals, then continues her explanation, "So Officer Jenny lent me one of hers. I put on quite the show for her. Anyway, I have to jet. A Hive Badge is waiting for me in Azalea Town. I hope you break a leg. Seriously." She pats Sarah on the back quite roughly, then heads downstairs, pinning her Zephyr Badge into the inside of her black leather jacket on her way down. When she's done interacting with Roxie, Sarah timidly walks up to the edge of the arena opposite to Falkner and calls out, "H-hi again, Falkner. I-I'm here... to win... win a Badge. I got another P-pokemon f-from Professor Elm, just like y-you told me to." She gestures towards her Cyndaquil, who looks ready to rumble. Falkner whispers to her Hoothoot, "I have to choose the right Pokemon. If I go easy on her by sending out my Pidgey, she'll think I'm a loser, but if I beat her too severely by sending out my Pidgeot, she'll be hurt and won't want to see me ever again! But Pidgeotto is just right. If I beat her with Pidgeotto, she'll definitely go out with me!" The Hoothoot perched on Falkner's shoulder rolls his large eyes at his trainer's ridiculous reasoning, but the bird brained Gym Leader is too busy staring at Sarah to notice. Falkner yells across the arena, "Okay then, this will be a two on two Pokemon battle. For my first Pokemon, I choose Pidgeotto!" The Pokeball that flies out of Falkner's hand lands on the center of the arena, releasing a flying bird Pokemon with reddish plumage on his head, "Pidgeoooottooo!" "Barbie, I choose..." Sarah down at her side and sees that her Mareep isn't there - Barbie's run off to the corner of the rooftop square, where she's huddled and trembling, "...Cyndaquil." When the small Fire Pokemon hears his name, he leaps into the arena, and clenches his tiny fists at the Pidgeotto hovering above. Falkner shouts out his command, "Pidgeotto, Gust attack!" Sarah mumurs her attack, afraid to shout out at the top of her lungs, "Cyndaquil, Tackle!" Cyndaquil leaps up into the air to Tackle Pidgeotto, but when the Flying Pokemon flaps his wings twice, the Gust attack hits Cyndaquil head on and the small Pokemon's attack misses. Cyndaquil falls flat on the ground, rather hurt by the attack, but he's determined to win this match for Sarah, so he stands up, "Quil!" "If the Pidgeotto can't see you, he can't attack you the next time you use Tackle, " Sarah reasons, so she gives her Cyndaquil a new order, "Use Smokescreen attack!" The fire mouse Pokemon takes in some air through his little mouth, then spits out a stream of Smokescreen at the Pidgeotto's face. "Hahaha, nice try!" Falkner laughs at Sarah's attempt, before he realizes that he's being insensitive when his Hoothoot reminds him of the fact by pecking him on the head, "I mean: nice try. But Pidgeotto isn't going to be stopped by a little smoke in his eyes, especially not after another GUST ATTACK!" Falkner's Pidgeotto nods, understanding what the Gym Leader wants him to do, then flaps his wings repeatedly until a Gust blows the Smokescreen away, hitting Cyndaquil yet again! Sarah clenches her fists, worried that Cyndaquil isn't going to be able to stand up after another attack... but the high-spirited little Pokemon remains standing, for Sarah's sake. The shepherdess doesn't know if Cyndaquil has other attacks at his disposal, so she just says, "Cyndaquil, try Tackle attack again, but be careful!" Falkner crosses his arms and smiles, remembering that a special attack he's taught most of his Bird Pokemon is effective against Fire types, "Pidgeotto, use Mud Slap!" Before Cyndaquil can even muster up enough strength to attempt another Tackle, Pidgeotto flies over to a pile of mud in the center of the arena. He grabs some of the mud with both of his claws, carries it over to Sarah's weak Cyndaquil, then Slaps the Mud directly onto the red spots on the Fire Pokemon's back! "CYNDAQUIL!" Cyndaquil cries out in pain when the wet mud hits his hot spots, collapses onto the arena's floor, then struggles a little before finally fainting. Tears roll down Sarah's cheeks when she sees her newly acquired Pokemon faint for the first time. Sarah runs into the arena, scoops Cyndaquil into her arms, then escorts the unconscious Pokemon out of the arena. She calls out to her Mareep, who is still in the corner, "Barbie! You've gotta beat that bird! For Cyndaquil." Barbie's trembling continues as she sheepishly walks into the battle arena, possibly more sad than Sarah is about Cyndaquil's loss because it means that she has to battle now, "Reeeep..." The Mareep keeps her eyes on Pidgeotto at all times, ready to flee if the Pokemon tries to hurt her in any way. "Pidgeotto, Sand Attack!" Falkner continues battling at full power, temporarily forgetting that he doesn't want to beat Sarah to severely since he's actually winning the match. His Bird Pokemon zips over to a pile of sand near the pile of mud, then flaps his wings while shouting out his name, Sand Attacking Barbie. The Mareep gets sand in her eyes, forcing her to close them. She's scared stiff now since she doesn't know where her foe is and thus can't dodge his attacks. Barbie hears her trainer shout out, "Barbie, Thundershock!" and she releases one, hoping to hit the Pidgeotto who is hovering nearby even though she can't aim the attack. Falkner grins when not a single lightning bolt from the Thundershock attack comes close to his Pidgeotto, "Okay, Pidgeotto, Mud Slap that Mareep!" Barbie's accuracy is further reduced when a layer of mud is caked over her closed eyes when the Pidgeotto Mud Slaps her. Not only does the attack lower her accuracy, but it forces her onto all four knees. She starts to bleat out to let Sarah know that she's in pain and doesn't want to continue. Sarah knows what the tone of her Mareep's voice means, so she cries out, "Barbie! I think it's time for you to..." Falkner thinks that Sarah is about to order her Pokemon to use her secret weapon, so he decides to beat her before she can do so, "Pidgeotto, just one more Mud Slap!" Sarah continues, "...give up..." but it's too late... Pidgeotto hears his command and ignores the shepherdess' concession when he grabs a huge pile of mud in his claws and hurls it at the unsuspecting weak Mareep! Barbie bleats out loudly one last time before fainting. Falkner does a little victory dance, flailing his arms around, "Oh yeah! Oh yeah! Who's the man? I'm the man!" The Gym Leader can't hear Sarah's loud sobbing over his own obnoxious celebration until the wise Hoothoot on his shoulder pecks some sense into him. Falkner gaps, "Oh no! Not again!" He races over to a humiliated Sarah and puts his arms on her shoulders, "Don't cry! Please don't cry!" His commands only lead Sarah to sob louder, and she tries to break free from his firm grasp. He doesn't let her go and instead suggests, "Hey, I know how to cheer you up. We could go watch a movie! I hear 'Shuckle-at' is still playing in some theaters. It's about a lady who has a Shuckle who makes Berry Juice that has the power to awaken old people's love lives! Doesn't that sound great? Let's go now!" "NO! You let go now!" Sarah pushes the Gym Leader who so mercilessly beat up her Pokemon away from her. She races over to Barbie, places her Cyndaquil on top of the Mareep's fleece, then hefts her Mareep into her arms. She storms out of the Gym, crying loudly, trying to find the nearest Pokemon Center. Falkner sighs at his Hoothoot, then remarks, "Girls are so weird." -Sarah