• Welcome to Thousand Roads! You're welcome to view discussions or read our stories without registering, but you'll need an account to join in our events, interact with other members, or post one of your own fics. Why not become a member of our community? We'd love to have you!

    Join now!

[Koa] Strange Building

Namohysip

Dragon Enthusiast
Staff
Partners
  1. charizard
  2. milotic
Koa awoke in the middle of an abandoned building. Metallic desks and odd tools suggested it was perhaps a lab or research facility, but beyond that, it was anyone's guess. There were no signs or other indicators to suggest that there was anything present there at all... but perhaps that was because this was some kind of vision. Right? Moments ago, Koa had been approaching Eien, and then there was the storm, and now this... Perhaps he'd been knocked out. Yes, that was totally it!

Above Koa, the lights were bright and reflected off of the dusty, perhaps once sterile room. Nearby was Echo, who looked dazed, and for some reason his eyes had a bright red glow to them. He tried to mutter something, but he must have had a headache.

But before Koa had a chance to say something, he felt something. Now that he was a Pokemon, particularly one of electricity, it was even more distinct than usual. A surge of power from above. The lights flickered. And then...

Blackout.
 

Flyg0n

Flygon connoisseur
Pronouns
She/her
Partners
  1. flygon
  2. crobat
This wasn't right. He'd just been in the storm and everything went wrong. Brisa had fallen - oh by Ho-Oh where was she? and now he was here. In this building that didn't make any sense. Had he been rbought here? And what about Echo? He'd heard his starters cries of pain just before they fell-

"Echo!" he called frantically, spotting him. He started towards him but hesistated when he noticed Echo's glowing red eyes. That wasn't right. "Echo, are you okay?" he called, still keeping his distance.

The lights flickered and then went out. He froze. This felt just like-

No, it couldn't be. Team Blackout couldn't be here, that didn't make any sense. He glanced around, his heart beating a little faster. "Echo?" he called again.
 

Namohysip

Dragon Enthusiast
Staff
Partners
  1. charizard
  2. milotic
Lights flickered weakly. Power was coming back, only to go out again. There was the hum of a generator and constant footfalls. Something roared from far away, too far to ever interfere with what was happening in that building. It was the roar of some powerful Pokemon, perhaps even a Legend. Thunder boomed, then flames, then downpour, but it was all far away. And getting further...

Wingbeats sounded ahead and down the hall. More footfalls. But one seemed more solid than the rest, and the gait was slow and deliberate. Purposeful, but without much emotion to glean from...

It was coming closer.

And then there was Echo. Red eyes, flying quietly beside another person--a person. It was a person. Shadowy, like a haze, but a person.

"Mm." The hollow voice spoke. "So this is where you've gone."

He pointed forward and echo took off, dive-bombing toward Koa.

Echo is attacking!
Echo: 1,000
 

Flyg0n

Flygon connoisseur
Pronouns
She/her
Partners
  1. flygon
  2. crobat
Koa swayed on his feet, sounds fading, distant roars and cries of something. His vision blurred at the edges and seemed to narrow. He could feel his heartbeat, he was aware of his body, stiff and heavy as lead. All he could see was the hazy figure before him, flanked by a Crobat. His Crobat. His starter, best friend. Who you rejected. Then the figure spoke.

That voice…

Koa squeezed his eyes shut, his breaths turning ragged. Flickers of nightmarish dreams crowded his mind, along with foggy memories. Staring at screen, the blurry image of Mt. Coronet, Spear Pillar. Dialga and Palkia in chains. Cyrus his father looking proud. And then the, oozing shadows forming, spreading, until the figure emerged, dripping shadow and darkness, antimatter.

Giratina. They struck with precision, freeing Time and Space from their bonds; then...

He watched as the shadow engulfed Cyrus. As the screen went dark.

Do not look for me.

Focus!

With great effort he pushed the thoughts down and stared at Echo, painfully aware of his trembling body. “E-echo..” he called out feebly.

This wasn’t real it couldn’t be real Echo would never betray him… Koa couldn't move. He couldn't hurt Echo. He wouldn't. You already hurt him enough.

His gaze flickered to the hazy figure, anger and fear fighting inside him, barely able to look at him. Maybe-

There was no more time to think. With a gesture, Echo was suddenly dive bombing at him. His instincts and training, his time with Brisa, kicked in. Even as he moved in a feeble attempt to dodge, he felt the faint tug of radiance at his paws and quickly drew on it. The effort seemed to drain him, even as the intoxicating lull of radiance filled his body. It felt so hard now without him. But he had to protect Echo.

A shimmering barrier flickered to life, encircling him and Echo.

Koa used Shining Echochamber!
[Stamina: -40]
[Corruption: +40RAD]
[HH]
 

Namohysip

Dragon Enthusiast
Staff
Partners
  1. charizard
  2. milotic
Echo's Wing Attack dealt a grazing 67 damage to Koa!

"Off seeking adventures... trying to avoid my footsteps? And yet, here you are. It's all the same. Do you feel like you've accomplished anything?"

Echo landed next to Cyrus, chittering lowly.

"Your spirit... look at how readily it crumbles. It is only a testament to the weakness inherent to this, and all, worlds. But that isn't anything to worry about." He made another gesture forward and Echo rose again. "Once your will is shattered... you can begin anew. Anew... and without spirit."

Echo: 1,000
 

Flyg0n

Flygon connoisseur
Pronouns
She/her
Partners
  1. flygon
  2. crobat
Echo's attack cut Koa to his core. Physically it only stung, but the attack made it clear - This was real. Real enough to hurt, at least. A pit formed inside his stomach and he stepped back, staring at Echo pleadingly. This couldn't be the real Echo, he couldn't believe that.

Unless it was and he realized what kind of person you are.

Something twitched inside Koa. His father's Cyrus's words felt like salt on a wound, each one burning him more than the last. No no no he's lying he's wrong he's-

He's right.


"No..." Koa meant to speak with confidence, to say something, anything. Instead his voice came out desperate, a child-like plea.

Pathetic.

Koa paused. His ears twitched.

Are you listening now? It's about time you stopped hiding from the truth. Are you really going to let him talk like that? Doesn't it make you angry? Spirit? Weakness? Who cares? What does he know! Here's your chance. Your chance to make up for everything he did! Stop hiding! Stop holding back!

Sparks began to flicker through Koa's fur. His gaze narrowed and a shadows began to dance around his form. His body tensed.

Show him your true strength. He took Echo from you, tried to take the universe, ruined everything and turned you into a monster.

A strange buzz clouded Koa's head and his whole body felt almost as if it were tingling, prickling-

Yes. You're sick of trying to be nice. Of trying to be good. Of trying to make up for everything he did and trying to be better. You'll never be better. You shouldn't have to be.

"Silence." His words came out as an icy, malicious hiss. "You prattle on about weakness and spirit but you're the one who's weak. Pathetic. All your grand ambitions and in the end? It meant nothing. You mean nothing. You'll never have the world you want because you're full of weakness."

Koa let out a savage snarl, shadows coursing through him, and leaped at Cyrus, a wave of powerful energy rippling from his maw. Even as he attacked, he called out to his pokemon, his friend.

Koa used Umbral Outcry!

"Echo, help me! Please, I need you! You're still my best friend, no matter what, but I can't do this alone."

Koa's Outcry Echoed! He called out to Echo!

Boosts: HH, + 1 Call
Corruption: [+40SHD]
[40 RAD, 40 SHD]
Stamina: [-40]
 

Namohysip

Dragon Enthusiast
Staff
Partners
  1. charizard
  2. milotic
Koa's Umbral Outcry dealt 191 damage to Echo!

Echo's wings faltered and he crashed into a nearby desk, squeaking in pain.

Echo used Screech! Half-dodged, Koa's Defense went down by 1!

"Get up," Cyrus said dully. "Childishly saying that I am the things I have called you... Do you have anything of substance? Anything of... worth? ...Of course you do not. Crobat. Rise."

Echo winced, nursing one of his wings, but it was still flightworthy.

Echo: 809
 

Flyg0n

Flygon connoisseur
Pronouns
She/her
Partners
  1. flygon
  2. crobat
Next thing Koa knew, Echo screeched in pain and was knocked back, nursing his injured wing. No no no- Koa froze. The attack had been meant for Cyrus why had Echo- Before he could react, Echo's powerful screech rang in his ears. He flinched, feeling some of his strength drain, but shook it off.

Monster. You hurt your own pokemon.

Simmering rage boiled through Koa. Maybe I am a monster. This was all Cyrus doing this was his fault. It hurts so bad will it ever stop?

Yes. Now destroy him.

Koa's rage filled gaze turned on Cyrus. He felt the shadows, so easy to call on, so strong. He could destroy him right here. Stop the pain inside him, prove himself. Then he saw red. The glowing, unnatural red of Echo's eyes. His anger wavered. This wasn't right.

All he'd really wanted was to protect Echo. But instead he'd hurt him.

Like you always do. You can't help yourself, can you? You're just another monster.

More shadows flickered around his body as his his thoughts seemed to spiral deeper and deeper. They were right, his father was right, he was becoming a monster and it was all he'd ever be-

And then a single memory shone through the shadows.

That's enough, kid. No more of that, now. Y'ain't a monster. You're hurtin'. Just like me. Just like the rest of us. It's okay.

The memory of the words stung, but almost in a relieving way. He'd hurt her, said terrible things to her but she hadn't once turned him away, had she? She'd never looked down on him, like he'd feared. Never doubted him, even through everything that had happened with Soda and his lies.

“Hey, Sir Koamaru. It is all right. Thou did what thou could with the limited time thou had at thy disposal. I wager that nobody faults thee for anything thou hast or hast not done — thou did thy best, and that is what matters most.” His smile returned as bright as a firmament, accompanied by a gentle voice. “And thou should give thyself some credit! Like, golly! Thou had to get used to a new body, thou had to master powers that are still largely unknown to thee, and then thou had to fend off chaotic forces? My, dost thou not see the progress thou have gotten so far?”

~~~

For this reason, I do not think any less of thee nor anyone else, Sir Koamaru. I believe that you all chose to do that out of good faith, and I cannot blame you for trying to do your best for the sake of the team.”

Icetales, through everything, accepted him anyway. Understood him. Encouraged him.

Save Echo. This isn't real, this isn't Cyrus. I have to save Echo.

"I gave a couple of examples jus' now, but another thing that helps is t'think of friends who need me t'keep my shit t'gether. Friends who wouldn't want me hurtlin' outta control. If it gets real bad, I focus on... Well. Times I've seen it go wrong."

Focus.

Koa took a long deep breath. He could still feel the pain, the lingering hurt, but he focused his thoughts on something else as well. Icetales, always ready with encouragement, the teams stalwart wall. Saltriv, always filled with compassion and empathy for everyone. Starr, abrasive yet deep down, caring and good. Cynthian, who'd showed him kindness. Dave, rough yet filled with caring in his own way.

And Brisa. Brisa, always earnest, strong and filled with hope.

He stared into Echo's eyes. His starter, his best friend, always upbeat, always optimistic, always believing the best in everyone, including him.

Be the person he sees you as. He needs you right now.

Koa focused!

This time, he didn't suppress or push down the darkness. It faded with each thought of his friends and allies, slipping away, bringing with it clarity.

Koa took a step towards Echo, ignoring Cyrus and offering a paw of friendship to Echo.
 

Namohysip

Dragon Enthusiast
Staff
Partners
  1. charizard
  2. milotic
Echo screeched again, somewhere between fear and panic, as he flapped back to Cyrus, but only halfway. He hesitated and looked back at Koa.

"Attack," Cyrus said with that same empty tone. "He is weak. There is no point in following him."

While this Echo could speak, it did not seem that he remembered that fact. He only stared at Koa, beating his wings a few times, and then looked back at Cyrus again, whose eyes were that same empty color.

"Has he ever done anything for you?" Cyrus asked. "Anything... of meaning? There is no meaning there. Spirit, emotion. Pride, recklessness. It is imperfect. It is... pointless." Cyrus gestured toward Koa. "You... are pointless."

A horrible feeling welled up inside Koa. His Shadows were set to 99!

"Look at who he truly is," Cyrus said to Echo. "Then decide."

Echo:
809
 

Flyg0n

Flygon connoisseur
Pronouns
She/her
Partners
  1. flygon
  2. crobat
Failure.

Pointless.


Koa gritted his teeth, clamping his jaws shut even as his fur darkened more and more.

No no no-

He struggled to breathe, his entire body trembling as thoughts corroded his mind.

"Look at who he truly is-"

You're a failure. You're nothing. Nothing but a monster. You spend all your time trying to make up for him, to be better than him but you'll never, ever be anything more.

"Echo... please." his voice echoed, rumbling with shadows, barely controlled. "I know I'm a failure, I know I made mistakes but please..." he shuddered. "You were the best thing to ever happen to me. You taught me what it means to be a great trainer. I need you. I can't do this without you. But I know I hurt you. I know I failed you. I'm sorry. So... its ok."


Koa bowed his head.

"Go ahead. Attack me. I won't fight you. I... I deserve it."

Koa called out to Echo!
Koa is refusing to fight back!
 

Namohysip

Dragon Enthusiast
Staff
Partners
  1. charizard
  2. milotic
With Koa staring at the ground, he wouldn't be able to see much, only hear. Echo's wingbeats were the most prominent sound, followed by a long silence from Cyrus. The storm outside the building was still raging. And then...

"I see. Then, you are just as flawed." Cyrus hummed, perhaps like a sigh. "I suppose I should have expected this." The world went dark as the lights flickered out, and then they came back on. All that remained of Cyrus was a fading wisp of smoke. Echo beat his wings a little more before his energy gave out and he flopped onto the ground with a rough thud. His core was like crumbs in his chest.

Echo made a low, distant squeak. "Koa..." he called. "I can't... move..."
 

Flyg0n

Flygon connoisseur
Pronouns
She/her
Partners
  1. flygon
  2. crobat
He said:
"I see. Then, you are just as flawed." Cyrus hummed, perhaps like a sigh. "I suppose I should have expected this."
See? You'll never be perfect. Never be good enough.

He heard Echo's wingbeats, thundered in his ears. He braced himself, half expecting another attack. And then-

They gave out. His head jerked up. Cyrus had faded, and Echo lay on the floor, limp.

"Echo!" with cry of despair he raced to his Pokémon's side.

His core...

Was... Was he dying? Like what had nearly happened to Sword?

my fault said:
"Koa..." he called. "I can't... move..."

"Shh... It's ok." His voice cracked.

You did this.

"It's going to be alright. Just. Hang on ok? I'll... I'll find help. We'll get you to Pop or Diyem or Maple. We'll fix you, ok?"


He looked around frantically, but he couldn't see any way out. He didn't even know where they were. And Echo was getting weaker...

"No no no... Echo don't go, please." Shadowy tears streamed down his face, trailing down his dark fur. "You can't. Not yet. I need you."

He scrambled through his bag, even though he knew it was pointless. Regular healing items didn't work on familiars. After a moment, he gave up and sank to the ground next to his starter.

You weren't good enough
you screwed this up
you hurt him-
You're just like him.


The dark words ran through his mind over and over, but he couldn't find the strength to push them down or refute them. A great pit opened inside him. "I'm so sorry." His voice came out in a choked whisper. "Sorry for not being a better trainer, sorry for failing you, for not being the trainer you deserved, for everythin-"

My sister said:
If y'blame yerself, y'gotta blame me too. And if'n you exonerate me, y'gotta exonerate yerself, too. Now, let's not have any more o' this self-dustin'. You're hurtin' badly enough without puttin' on more hurt yerself."

He stopped. All this time... all this time and he was still blind to it, right until the end. The things he was saying about himself... Were they hurting Echo as well? If he couldn't forgive himself, was he telling Echo he'd never forgive him either? By hating himself, he was hating Echo?

Don't y'think it's time to stop that?
A voice, almost like his own, yet almost like that of a friend too... Maybe that voice was right.

"Nevermind that," he said softly, forcing himself to smile. "Thank you, Echo," he murmured. "For not giving up on me. I'm so proud of you, of what you've done. Who you are."

The pain in his chest eased slightly.

"Proud of your tenacity, your unwavering hope, the way you always see the best in others. Of your spirit. I won't let this be the end. I promise I'll try, try to see you the way you see me. But you've got to hang in there. Stay with me, Echo. You didn't give up on me, so I won't give up on you."

Koa pressed his forehead against Echo's.

"I love you."

Koa called Echo with all of his heart!
 
Last edited:

Namohysip

Dragon Enthusiast
Staff
Partners
  1. charizard
  2. milotic
Echo didn't reply, but his wings twitched toward Koa just enough that he could feel it. His eyes dimmed, and he was smiling. "It's okay," he whispered. "I... I think I understand what's happening. Mom... she... she's fighting back... She... it controlled us... this... chaos controlled us, and then... Mom... I hear her. She says... to keep fighting... I know where to go... She..." He gasped slightly... and then the red lights went out.

Silence.

And then, finally, Echo's lights returned to normal.
 

Flyg0n

Flygon connoisseur
Pronouns
She/her
Partners
  1. flygon
  2. crobat
Shadows still ripled around Koa, but he held Echo close as he spoke.

It's okay.

He had to believe that.

Echo said:
"I... I think I understand what's happening. Mom... she... she's fighting back... She... it controlled us... this... chaos controlled us, and then... Mom... I hear her. She says... to keep fighting... I know where to go... She..."

Eien had done this? A flash of anger tore through him. How dare she-

No. Not now. He drew Echo close with one paw, tears dripping onto the familiars amorphous body. The Crobat gasped once and then-

He was still. The glow of his eyes faded, leaving behind darkness.

Koa's heart stopped. His whole felt like it stopped. A hundred fleeting prayers and begging and every last kind of hope he could think of flowed through him.

And then... there was a faint flicker, then a familiar, comforting yellow glow. Echo's eyes opened. Koa heart soared, his tears changing from despair to joy. His body shook with sobs of relief, even as his shadows still bubbled inside his head; taunting and tearing at him.

It's not enough. You'll never be perfect.

I know.

Cracks suddenly rippled across ethereal red chains that had bound his body, chains he hadn't even seen until just now.

And thats ok.

The chains shattered. Lightning crackled around his body as he was encased in a familiar blue light. His body grew, denser, thicker, tougher. More confidence, more power. More peace. The light faded, revealing his new form.

1627341110775.png

Koa embraced the truth and unleashed!

Koa blinked, staring at himself. Then he grinned. Sick. He was bigger now, by a fair margin. Bulkier. He almost felt as if he could really fight. But there'd be time to try that later.

He turned to Echo, still slightly anxious for his starter. "Are you okay now buddy? You're.. back right?" he nuzzled him gently.
 

Attachments

  • 1627318754558.png
    1627318754558.png
    522.7 KB · Views: 0

Namohysip

Dragon Enthusiast
Staff
Partners
  1. charizard
  2. milotic
Echo was still only partway conscious, but that strange presence in the room was clearing up. It felt like, indeed, Echo was back--Eien's influence, or whatever that was, had disappeared and left them. The lights of the building were stabilized; the storm outside was calming. And as Koa lay there with Echo, as his consciousness slowly returned, a new power awakened within them...

Koa's Eternal Spirit awakened!
"Don't underestimate my team!" - Once per battle, Brilliant Conduit can be cast with double HP and +1 Endure. On the turn after this Conduit is formed, it also echoes all sound-based moves the user performs, including all of its effects, at half thresholds and power.
 

Flyg0n

Flygon connoisseur
Pronouns
She/her
Partners
  1. flygon
  2. crobat
Ever so gently, Koa nudged Echo and scooped him onto his back. "Rest for now." A new, invigorating power filled him. There was a lot to think about, and a lot to talk about. But right now... the others needed him.

"I'll buy you the biggest jar of honey when we get home," Koa said. "I promise."

Steeling himself, he raced for the exit.
 
Top Bottom