From: "William Rendfeld" <warendfeld@aol.com> Subject: Re: [PW!] On to the lab! Date: Wednesday, February 18, 2004 2:08 PM >About 15 minutes walk through the relatively sunny streets of Littleroot >town, and the large group of searchers came to a relatively large >building, which, checking her map, Alex comfirmed was Professor Birch's >lab. Turning and seeing the crowd, Ben sweatdropped. > >"...Three at a time?" > >Upon entering the lab, the trainer was amazed at the instruments and >complicated notes cluttering all the desks. Although he had already been >in before, he had not visited for a long time, and and this kind of >place was not on his daily agenda. Ben approached the Professor who was >sitting at the back of the lab, followed by Alex and Cass, hoping he was >not in the middle of something. > >"Umm...Profesor, are you b-" > >"Hi! Have you come to show me how your pokedex is coming along?" > >"...I never had a pokedex. My name is Ben Algam." > >"Hm? Oh, you havn't caught enough pokemon to make it worthwhile." > >"..." > >"Is that all you came for?" > >"Well actually, I was wondering if you could look after three of my >pokemon, including my Swampert which you gave me about one, two, or >maybe about four years back." > >"Thats fine. They may help my studies, and the pokemon out the back >could do with a few more playmates!" > >Ben chuckled nervously as he said goodbye to his pokemon, and handed the >pokeballs to the Professor, explaining he would be back for them >sometime and to call him if they are too much trouble. He thanked the >Professor once more, and turned to Alex, motioned forward and stepped >back himself. > >"If thats what he's like, imagine Professor Oak!" He whispered to >mawile, who promply smiled a large teethy smile. "Overworked, and >underpaid." > "Who said they were paid?" Cass asked with a chuckle as Alex walked forward. As Professor Birch set aside the three Poké Balls that Ben had given him, Alex asked, "Hard day in the office, Professor?" "You could say that," Professor Birch replied as he turned to face her. He blinked in surprise, then asked, "Alex?" Alex smiled and nodded. "It's been a long time." "Too long," Professor Birch happily agreed as the two shook hands. "Your mother told me that you had set off on your journey three months ago, but I didn't expect to see you in Hoenn so quickly. Or at the Silver Conference." "Over-eagerness got the better of me, I suppose," Alex replied with a shrug. "But I don't regret taking part. I met several trainers there, and I gained a great deal from the experience. Speaking of, did you manage to catch the Final Round on television?" "Actually, yes," Birch noted with a sigh. "What happened to Adam Samson in the final round was frightening, to say the least. If he's alive, then I sincerely hope that he is found." "I intend to find that out for myself," Alex replied. "In fact, that's why I'm here. I met him during the Silver Conference, and he was kind enough to give me a little peace of mind. I volunteered to help in the search for him, and that in turn led me back here to Hoenn." Birch blinked, "The Hyper Beam carried him this far?" "At least," Alex replied. "But right now, there's no direct evidence to say whether he's alive or not. But either way, I intend to find him." Birch smiled, "The same as always. You father would be proud to see you out here like this." "I like to think he would," Alex replied. "But I take it you haven't seen any sign of him." "Sadly, no," Birch answered. "However, with all of my field research I should be able to keep an eye out for him. If I find anything, you'll be the first to know." "Thanks," Alex replied. - "They've been in there for a while," ShadowWarrior the Murkrow noted impatiently from his perch with the other members of the Search Party for Smasher. "<Patience,>" Surtur the Combusken noted. "<All things with time.>" About that second, Alex, Cass and Ben exited Professor Birch's lab and Alex reported, "Bad news; no sign of Smasher from Professor Birch's end. Good news, however; he promised to keep an eye out during his time in the field." "You honestly think that'll help?" Nori asked, protectively holding a somewhat saddened Big Time in her arms. "We can hope," Alex countered. "Derek, he's all yours." "Thanks," Derek Fisher replied before walking into the lab, Chan the Medicham following behind. "So, no luck," Aerie noted in a dejected voice. "No luck yet," Alex replied, kneeling down in front of the young girl. "I didn't say anything about hope, did I? And while I'm thinking about it..." "About what?" Aerie asked as Alex pulled the sixth Poké Ball from her slot. "Cue and I were talking about a few things earlier," Alex explained. "And he suggested that you take care of him. I'm not entirely certain why, but it's a little hard to argue with someone who mostly speaks in questions. All I ask is that you talk to him every once in a while, and that you don't try to tear him apart." "Now I wouldn't do that," Aerie said innocently. "Still, take care of him," Alex replied, putting the Poké Ball in Aerie's hands. "Maybe he'll give you a new perspective." Aerie looked at the Poké Ball, then at Alex and said, "Thanks." TBC? [NS: Adrian, it's up to you whether you want Aerie to keep Cue or not. Doesn't matter to me either way.] William Rendfeld Creator of Echowarrior, the Pokémon Resistance, and Alex Masters 178,000 Excellent Author Points 1 'I knew odd pokefacts that confused a bread crumb' point. 20 Y2Tech Points