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The Quest for the Legends (ILCOE)

The Final Stretch – Chapter 71: Shattered

“To Mark, legendary psychiatrist,” Leah said, grinning as she raised a glass of cola. “Who would’ve thought?”

Mark felt himself blush as the group raised their glasses along with her. He still felt dazed and strange, trying to wrap his brain around the fact that he had actually managed to persuade a legendary to their side, with words, him. Everyone had been there, people like Leah and Ryan who were better and brainier and cooler than him, and yet it’d been him who’d realized why the other unicorns hadn’t gone into the balls, him who Waraider had trusted enough to agree. He’d had help – but he’d done it. And now there was only one legendary left.

“What do we do now?” he asked as everyone put their drinks back down. “How are we going to find Mew?”

“We split up,” Leah said. “Mew knows a lot of moves, but there’s only one of her, and of course, she’s been getting weaker. Ryan and I could take her solo no problem. You guys might want to go in pairs, I guess, just in case, but the hard part is finding her. We’ll want to spread out.”

“Are we sure we have to fight her?” Sparky asked, stroking his chin. “I can’t claim to be a legendary expert, but my impression was that Mew wasn’t much of a fighter.”

“We can’t persuade him,” Chaletwo said flatly. “I’ve tried.”

“I should go with Mark,” May said out of the blue. “Our Pokémon have fought together the most. It makes sense.”

Mark turned towards her, a bit surprised, but she was only looking down at her food, busily cutting into a mini-pizza. “Okay, sure,” he said.

“I don’t think Sparky and I could handle a legendary on our own,” Victor said, looking at Alan and Robin. “So each of us goes with one of you, I guess?”

“Sparky?” Alan suggested.

“Why not?” Sparky replied, smiling. Robin and Victor shrugged at each other.

“Do we have any leads on where Mew is?” Mark asked.

“Just that one sighting in Scorpio City from a couple weeks back,” Leah said. “We should concentrate on Ouen to start with, but not too much – she does teleport, so although she usually sticks to flying around, she could also be, y’know, off in Unova somewhere by now. Let’s start off dividing Ouen between us and then spread out more if we haven’t found her in a couple of weeks. Any special requests?”

Robin shrugged. “I know the east side of the region pretty well. We could cover that.” Victor nodded at her.

“Same with me and the northwest, near Stormy Town,” Sparky said, looking at Alan. “Does that sound good to you?”

“Sure,” Alan said.

Mark opened his mouth. “I… I’ve been thinking we should look into somebody here in Alumine,” he said. “Dunno if it’ll help, but there’s someone who managed to find Mew once, and maybe… maybe he’d be willing to help, or we could dig something up about how he did it.” May gave him a glance out of the corner of her eye. He was a little apprehensive about voluntarily approaching the Mew Hunter again – but if it could lead them to Mew, they had to try. And surely he didn’t want the world to end any more than they did.

“Sure,” Leah said, raising her eyebrows. “Let us know if you get anything useful out of that. Let’s see, after that you could cover the west side, so how about I grab the south and Ryan takes the north?”

Everyone muttered some form of agreement.

“Great! That’s that all settled. Now for the rest of tonight let’s just sit back and –”

“Hey, look,” Robin said suddenly, pointing at the TV above the bar.

Mark looked, and his heart skipped a beat. In the top right corner of the screen, behind the news anchor, Taylor’s picture smiled obliviously down at him, alongside a standard Pokédex render of a Tyranitar.

“…who claims to be responsible for the death of controversial Ouen Champion Taylor Lancaster. The wild Tyranitar approached a trainer on the island this morning to confess to the murder of Lancaster and ask to be captured and taken to the human authorities. In a statement made to the police, the Tyranitar claims it happened upon Lancaster in the mountains and attacked him after he insulted Tyranitar. The statement goes on to say the Tyranitar now understands why it was wrong, that it deeply regrets its actions, and that it wishes to face human justice to atone for its crime.”

Mark turned towards May, his heart thumping. She stared at the screen, the color drained from her face. Alan, Robin and Sparky were all looking at her; Ryan’s gaze flicked uncertainly between her and Mark. Victor stared wide-eyed at her, lips pressed together, clenching his fist on the table. Leah looked around at everyone in confusion.

“Among legal experts,” the anchor went on, “opinions are split on how to handle the Tyranitar’s unusual request for human justice.”

The report cut to a woman in a suit, identified as a lawyer. “Regardless of the creature’s desire to be punished, it is a wild Pokémon,” she said. “It’s commendable if it wants to take responsibility, but the Agreement is clear that wild Pokémon are not subject to human laws and standards, and vice versa. Cross-species murder has always been an unpleasant can of worms, but there’s no good solution here. The legal separation is an absolutely fundamental part of the Agreement, and upholding it is far more important than any individual case.”

Another lawyer appeared, impatiently adjusting his sleeves as he spoke: “When a Pokémon joins a trainer, it voluntarily submits to the rule of human law and becomes legally responsible for its actions within human society. This Tyranitar may not be trained, but it’s voluntarily submitting to the rule of human law just the same. I see no reason not to treat it the same way.”

“Champion Island police declined to comment on the matter of jurisdiction, but have stated that the Tyranitar is currently in custody and urge the public to have patience as the investigation continues.”

May’s gaze flicked from side to side, to all the eyes fixed on her, and then, abruptly, she stood up and stormed out of the restaurant.

-------

They caught up with her on the road out of town. She was leaning over a wall by the roadside, taking deep, heaving breaths. When they approached, she stumbled a bit further before giving up and turning around to face them, still supporting herself against the wall.

“If you told him to lie he’d do it, huh,” Robin said.

“I did not tell him to do that!” May shouted, her voice hot and raw.

“You were there!” Robin shouted back, fists clenched. “You were there! Why is it him giving himself up to the police and not you?”

“I don’t know!” May threw her hands up in agitation. “I told him to go away and find some wild Tyranitar! I don’t know why he’s doing this!”

“I knew it,” Victor said coldly. “God, I knew it. I knew you two weren’t right.”

Mark blinked, turning around in confusion, and flinched under the sudden accusation in his gaze. “What happened to your Letal?” Victor asked, his voice harsh.

“What?” Mark’s brain was frozen in befuddlement. “What are you talking about?”

“Your Letal!” Victor rounded on him. “You used her way too long in our battle, and she failed to evolve, Nurse Joy said you could’ve killed her, and now you don’t have her anymore!”

“That’s not…” Mark’s gut stung, his face burned. “I – I think you’re mis…”

“And you, yelling at your Vibrava like that – I should’ve seen it earlier but I liked you and wanted to be your friend, and I didn’t put it together until I watched the League finals and your Tyranitar was just… like a child, and thought he was weak, and you just yelled at him and watched him get hurt! And even then, I thought you’d released him for not being good enough, I never thought – why did I come with you?

“I didn’t make him do it!” May shouted, fists clenched. “He just…”

“I think this is quite enough,” Chaletwo said. “Yes, there was an unfortunate accident –”

“They were there!” Robin yelled.

“– but none of this has any bearing on our mission, which is to find and capture Mew. We have almost succeeded. How can you stand here still arguing about this? You’re splitting up anyway; if you have a problem with May, then great, you never have to see her again.”

Robin stared at Mark, anger gleaming in her eyes. “What about Tyranitar?” she said, her voice quiet. “He’s sitting in captivity right now trying to get himself punished, who knows what they’ll end up doing to him, and they’re standing here getting away with it.”

“Well, contrary to some of your wild theorizing here, it was the Tyranitar who killed him, of his own volition. For the record, May tried to stop him. And as far as I’m concerned this wraps things up nicely. Weren’t you complaining about Rick not knowing how his brother died? Well, now he knows, and he has no reason to think there’s anything more to it than an aggressive Tyranitar, as he should. Frankly this couldn’t have ended better if you ask me.”

Robin closed her eyes and took a deep breath. “Look. Chaletwo. Maybe you don’t know this. But just because trained Pokémon submit to human law doesn’t mean the trainer is free of all responsibility. The trainer’s the one who makes sure their Pokémon understand and honor the contract they’re entering into. It’s the trainer’s job to inform and educate the Pokémon about human society, and evaluate whether they can be trusted, and recall them if they ever do get carried away during a fight. You know, May tried to tell me it was all a misunderstanding. The problem with that is that actually, making sure he understands stuff like ‘murder is wrong’ was her responsibility, and the moment Tyranitar made a move towards Taylor, he should’ve been recalled. So unless you’re going to tell me that after somehow misunderstanding the most basic rule of being trained, this huge lumbering beast that can be outsped by a Fletchling attacked so fast and so out of nowhere that nobody could possibly have seen it coming, this should not have happened!

She glared at Mark; his heart pounded uncomfortably. He should’ve done something. He should’ve stepped up when Tyranitar approached Taylor, said something. He should’ve objected to May’s methods. He should’ve…

“No? I didn’t think so,” Robin said, her voice hard.

“Well, my point still stands,” Chaletwo said, defensive. “Even if May bears some responsibility for this boy’s death, we’re looking for Mew. That’s far more important than your high-flying notions of justice. It’s fine if you hate her, but we need her out there searching, not sitting in jail or whatever it is your human justice system would do with her. And I assure you that if you make any attempt to sabotage our mission, you’ll make me very angry with you.”

Robin stared at him and shook her head. “Fine,” she said. “Fine. Victor, let’s go.”

She turned to join Victor where the road led onwards, out of Alumine.

“Victor,” Mark managed to croak out as he finally remembered how to speak. “My Letal, she wasn’t… She always wanted to be released after the League. I just took her back home.”

A flicker of doubt passed across Victor’s face. Robin turned, too. “Yeah, well, good for you,” she said. “I guess your only crime is sitting around watching while Tyranitar murdered someone and then participating in covering it up. Hooray.”

She threw up her hands and strode down the road without looking back. After a moment’s hesitation, Victor followed.

“I… I think I’d better go,” Ryan mumbled, taking out a Pokéball. “Xatu, Green Town.” And in a second, he was gone, too.

“Well, that sure was a thing,” Leah said after a moment, raising her eyebrows. “So, uh, were there any plans to let me in on this murder everyone else apparently knew about?”

Chaletwo gave a frustrated sigh. “I never meant for any of you to hear about this,” he said. “Robin learned of it and informed our group earlier; it was just as hard to reason with her then. As for Victor, I don’t know what he was on about. He didn’t seem to believe any of this nonsense the last time we met. Frankly I’m happy to be rid of them.”

“Same old Chaletwo after all,” Leah said dryly. “Well, so long as you don’t get me tangled up in this. I don’t want anything to do with murdered kids, okay? It’s none of my business how you deal with it, but don’t make it my problem.”

“Why would it be your problem?” Chaletwo replied irritably.

“I don’t know, just don’t.” Leah looked at Mark, grim. “Well, I guess I’m off to look for Mew, too,” she said, giving a sarcastic wave of her hand. “Bye, everyone. Good luck with all that.”

Mark was too dazed to even say goodbye before she’d sent out Felix and teleported away.

That left Mark, May, Alan and Sparky standing on the crossroads. May was still by the wall, averting her gaze.

“May?” Alan said quietly, stepping closer. “Are you okay?”

She looked up. “Fine,” she said after a moment’s pause. “We should probably get going too.”

Mark shrugged limply as she turned her gaze towards him. Robin’s words still echoed in his ears. Hooray.

Alan stared at May, brow furrowing. “Look, I… I don’t think they were being fair. It wasn’t your fault, not like…”

“That’s new,” May said coldly without looking at him.

Alan glanced at Mark, sighing. “We… we didn’t see it either,” he said. “None of us knew Tyranitar would do something like that, but he did. And you’ve been suffering for it, and I…”

“I’m not suffering,” May said, turning abruptly, fists clenched. “Let’s go.”

Sparky, who had been standing silently back, listening, stepped forward. “I can see you don’t want help or pity,” he said, his voice level and calm. “But for the record, I also think they judged you too harshly. It’s true that a trainer is formally meant to inform their Pokémon about human laws, but in practice, most Pokémon already know and most trainers don’t bother. I certainly never sat down for a legal chat with any of my Pokémon, and to be frank, I doubt they did, either. It’s easy in hindsight to call someone a monster for the mistakes they’ve made, but it’s human nature to make mistakes; whose mistakes result in tragedy is often a matter of sheer moral luck.”

May didn’t answer. She stood still, knuckles white, lips pressed together.

“Look,” Alan said, exhaling. “You were careless towards your Pokémon. I still think that. Maybe Tyranitar wouldn’t have done it if you’d raised him better. But I know you didn’t want this to happen. I’ve been thinking about the way I’ve been acting, and…” He glanced at Mark. “I didn’t really want to see it before, but I’ve finally started to notice what you’ve been going through because of this. And I’m sorry for making it worse.”

“Just go,” May said.

Alan and Sparky looked at one another. “The last thing I want to say,” Sparky said, slowly, “is that in my experience, lies and secrets lead to nothing good. I hope the truth will eventually come to light in a way that’s fair to you and to your Tyranitar, and I hope you can be at peace with what that might mean.”

May didn’t answer.

“I guess we should get going,” Alan said after a moment, sighing. “See you around. Let’s hope we can find Mew soon and put an end to all this.”

“Goodbye,” Sparky said. “And good luck.”

“Bye,” Mark said limply. May only gave a vague nod, not looking at them.

And Alan and Sparky turned to head northward, leaving them alone on the empty road.

Mark let out the breath he’d been holding. His arms and legs were trembling, his body weak with emotional exhaustion; he wanted to go back to the trainer hotel and sleep, forever, forget about Tyranitar and everything that had happened.

May inhaled sharply. “Okay,” she said. “Let’s get back.”

He nodded, and they set off in silence, back down the road into the city.

“Are you sure this Mew Hunter person can help us?” Chaletwo asked after a minute, a note of lingering irritation in his voice. “From what I’ve gathered of your memories, he doesn’t seem very pleasant or reasonable.”

Mark shrugged uncertainly. He’d felt a lot more confident earlier. “Scyther used to be his Pokémon,” he said. “He might be able to talk to him.”

He took out Scyther’s Pokéball and dropped it. The mantis materialized out of white light, stretching.

“We were thinking about talking to the Mew Hunter and seeing if he’d be able to help us find Mew,” Mark said.

“So I heard,” Scyther replied.

His gaze was distant and contemplative as he scanned his surroundings – the city he’d spent three years of his life in. Mark suddenly had a thought that he should have had before. “Wait, do you know anything about how he found Mew back then?”

Scyther shook his head slowly. “That was before he caught me. He would often talk about it, but he never mentioned a strategy. I always assumed he simply wandered.”

“Didn’t Rick find Mew at the same time, though?” May said. “That’d be a weird coincidence.”

Scyther hesitated. “I don’t know. Perhaps he didn’t tell me everything.” He paused again, wincing. “I don’t know if he’d talk to me. He thought I’d betrayed him. But I do know that he’d never help you capture Mew. He was in agony after losing it to Rick. He wouldn’t tell you anything unless he thought it’d help him find Mew himself.”

Mark shared a brief glance with May before she looked away again. Maybe this wasn’t such a great idea. What if the Mew Hunter demanded to come along, threw his own Pokéball at Mew when they’d weakened him?

“Well, then at least the War would be prevented,” Chaletwo said. “You can worry about what follows if it comes to that.”

He shrugged uncertainly, and they walked on towards the hideous yellow building on the edge of town.

-------

When they knocked on the large steel door, though, there was no answer. The curtainless windows were all dark.

“He’s gone,” Scyther whispered, his gaze distant.

“Home?” Mark asked.

Scyther shook his head. “He lived in the Gym. He must have gone out to search for Mew again.” He chuckled bitterly. “I always knew he would. Never stopped hoping, though.”

Mark stared at him. He really should have known that was a possibility, but somehow he’d felt like the Mew Hunter would simply be waiting there, rambling incoherently on the floor forever like they’d left him, as if time wouldn’t pass when they weren’t there.

“So what then?” he asked. “Is there anything here that could give us any clues?”

Scyther hesitated. “He kept a diary,” he said after a moment. “He never let us see it, but sometimes I could see him writing in it late at night. Perhaps he wrote about how he found Mew there.”

“And you think he’d have left it here?”

Scyther shrugged slightly. “It was a few years ago. If he still keeps a diary, it wouldn’t be the same one.”

Although he said it casually, he averted his gaze to stare into the distance. Mark supposed he even now felt conflicted about invading his former trainer’s privacy.

“We have to do this if it might help us find Mew,” he said.

“I know,” Scyther said, sighing.

“May?” Mark said, looking at her. She’d been staring at the door, but snapped to attention as he said her name.

“Right,” she said and took a deep breath. “I’ve broken into this place once. I can do it again.”

And she marched decisively around to the back of the building as Mark recalled Scyther and scrambled to keep up.

-------

Near the top of a corner of the back wall of the gym, a large ventilation grate was bolted onto the concrete. Without speaking, May raised a Pokéball and released Skarmory from it.

“Get the grate,” she said, matter-of-factly, like this was something she did regularly, and Skarmory flew up, dug his claws between the slits and tore the grate clean off the wall. It dropped to the ground with a clatter; Mark’s gaze darted down the alleys on either side, waiting for some bystander to appear to investigate the noise and catch them in the act, but no one came. He wasn’t sure that made him feel any better. (Getting away with it.)

“You coming?” May said, climbing onto Skarmory’s back. He wanted to say no and stay here looking the other way, pretend he had nothing to do with this, but he couldn’t. He nodded, his mouth dry, before getting on behind her. The bird Pokémon trilled and clumsily took off the ground to ferry them up.

May went in first and Mark squeezed in after her, ducking down to let her recall Skarmory over his shoulder. The ventilation duct was dirty and only barely wide enough for them to crawl through on all fours, but thankfully it wasn’t very long: it only went through a small side room, visible through a grate in the bottom of the duct, and then ended in a third grate on the wall of the main gym arena. Cold air rushed past them from the outside, as if drawing them in.

“Go,” May whispered, knocking Skarmory’s Pokéball against the inside grate. It burst open in a shower of white light, releasing Skarmory on the other side, where he could tear off the grate and ferry them down. As May absorbed Skarmory back into his ball, Mark released Scyther again, looking around apprehensively.

It was obvious no one had been in the Gym for a while; the floor was dusty, the windows grimy, and the lights were off. Scyther looked wistfully out the window and around the room, like a cherished childhood home, but the harsh, bare concrete of the empty walls only pricked at chilling memories Mark had tried to forget: being pinned against that same wall, scythe at his throat, threatened with death.

“He wasn’t a madman,” Scyther said, as if he’d read Mark’s mind. “He was kind and he loved us. I would’ve followed him anywhere, short of murdering a child for Mew. And even then I considered it.”

Mark shuddered. He couldn’t see the man he’d met that day, with those glinting, light blue eyes and that hoarse voice that went from low to bellowing in a second, as anything other than frightening and dangerous. Even the idea he could also have been kind to his Pokémon seemed irrevocably in conflict with the rest of him.

“Come on,” May said behind them. “There’s nothing here.”

She turned to the door beneath the ventilation grate, to the back room. They pushed it open, carefully; inside, there was a table, a refrigerator, some cupboards, and a bed with a small window above it.

“This is where he lived?” Mark asked.

Scyther nodded. “He never went back home after his Pokémon journey. Bought the Gym, lived here ever since.”

Mark swallowed. The room was tiny, dark and dirty – not the kind of place one would want to spend a single night in, let alone live in. And yet in some way it didn’t entirely surprise him. It seemed to fit with the man’s unkempt appearance and strange behaviour.

May opened the refrigerator to find it loaded with beer cans. “I can see where Scyther gets the drinking problem from,” she said, wrinkling her nose as she closed it again. The cupboards, too, were full of liquor bottles of various shapes and sizes.

Scyther chuckled. “He wouldn’t let us have any of that,” he said. “Said it was too strong for Pokémon.”

May only arched an eyebrow at him in disbelief.

Mark looked around, and his gaze settled on a black object lying on the windowsill above the bed. “What’s this?” he said, climbing onto the bed to reach for it; it turned out to be a small, dust-covered book. There was no title or picture on either cover.

“That’s it,” Scyther said. “That’s the diary.”

Mark turned it over, apprehensive. He’d known they were looking for it, but it still felt strange to be holding the diary of someone like that in his hands, like his madness could be infectious, somehow. What would they find in there? Could they really just read it?

May snagged the book out of his hands, sighing impatiently. As she opened it, Mark caught a glance of bizarre, alien writing at the bottom of the page, and his gut twisted in a sudden, irrational panic before May turned it the right way up and flipped to the start of the book. It had no date, only a hastily scribbled, barely legible block of text covering the page from top to bottom.

Mew is the greatest Pokémon, originator of all life – all of them in one, the ultimate being. They say it wanders the earth and appears only to the pure of heart who desire to see it. It knows their hearts and takes mercy on them by gracing them with its presence. Mew would underst

It cut off suddenly in the middle of the word; a loose, hasty scribble crossed the entire paragraph out before the writing began anew in the next line.

Mew is the most perfect and pure-hearted of all Pokémon. People don’t see it but I do. There are rotten people everywhere poisoning the world, capturing Pokémon and enslaving them for their own gain. Mew must be devastated, tired, harrowed, at the filthy selfishness of all those people, just like me. I understand. This world is broken and Mew must suffer and I can help. I understand Mew. I can help Mew. I can save

Again, the paragraph cut off suddenly. Mark swallowed, his mouth dry as he read on.

I’m a savior. I save Pokémon. That’s what they tell me. I capture them so I can save them. Feraligatr was nervous about trainers, but with me he said he could be himself. Sandslash lost his parents, but I came in their place. Sneasel was an outcast rejected by his kind, and I accepted him for who he was and taught him to trust again. Kabutops is haunted by ancient memories, but I listen and help him process them. They would be lost if it weren’t for me. I saved them because I love them, more than anything. Other trainers don’t care, they don’t care to understand them, they just want to use them for fights. They’re repulsive and wrong. I can save Mew from all the filth and the selfishness and the greed. Mew must cry every day at how broken the world is. I can help, I can make Mew whole again, I can make it better. But how can I make it see? How can I let it know that I’m different from them? Mew wouldn’t let itself be captured by an ordinary trainer, I know. Even with a Master Ball, it would teleport away instantly when released. I have to find a way to make it stay and give me a chance, like Feraligatr and Sandslash and Sneasel and Kabutops, so I can show it that I understand and earn its trust and save it, just like I saved them.

May took a deep breath, glancing at Mark for a second, before she turned the page.

Pokéball books at the library. It’s not that hard to modify balls. I never thought it would be so easy. The secrets seem so closely guarded from afar, but the technology is old and it’s simple when you look into it. I think I know what I need to do, found some info on Mean Look. Just have to experiment and confirm, get some balls to try it on. I can feel Mew getting closer. Please

I can do it. Tried it on Sneasel’s ball. The first attempt didn’t work but the second did. He can’t stray far from the ball now. I switched him back to a normal one, but it works. If I just get a ball that can hold Mew, everything will be complete, but I need money. I think I’ll open a Gym. Feraligatr and Sandslash and Sneasel and Kabutops are strong. They can do it. They believe in me.

The next few entries were about the process of setting up the Gym and opening it; May gave an impatient sigh and turned the page, then gave the next a brief scan and flipped it again. Mark caught glimpses of sentences as she skimmed:

The Master Ball price is going down. I will wait. Mew has time. Mew has unlimited time but it is alone and it has no one. I’m coming for you Mew

Sneasel was distracted during a fight today. I asked him what was wrong and he said he’s feeling sick but didn’t want to disrupt the management of the Gym. I told him never do that again, he’s more important. He said he doesn’t think he’s important. I said he’s important to me and to us. Took him to the Pokémon Center, they wanted to keep him overnight. Can’t sleep, hope he’s okay.

Kabutops remembers seeing Mew once, back in his previous life. I nearly choked. I asked what he had seen but he says it’s all fuzzy, all he remembers is a pink glow and a serene smile. So back then, Mew was happy. I wish

“Okay, here we go,” May said at last as she turned the page once more.

I have the ball now. That means I only need to find it. I don’t know how, but it doesn’t matter, because Mew appears to the pure of heart who desire to see it, and I know it will appear to me. I only need to go out, wander the world like Mew does, and our kinship and connection will grow. I can feel destiny drawing us together already. I am meant to be Mew’s trainer and it is meant to be mine, so I can help it heal and we can face the world together. It will happen soon.

So far nothing. It’s been a month, I think, haven’t kept track. It doesn’t matter. I have time and patience. Mew cannot be rushed. Mew lives without worrying about time. It has nowhere it needs to be, nobody it must see, it just is. It’s like me. We will find each other.

I know my heart is pure. I know it. But does Mew know?

Mew still hasn’t come. I have patience. I

Still nothing.

Heard a rumour today. Bad rumour, about some kid from Cleanwater City capturing legendary Pokémon, cloning them, planning to open a Gym. He’s just a teenager, an orphan. They say he’s caught a few already. How can that be possible? The legendaries of the myths are so powerful no trainer could take them down. It has to be a lie.

Still haven’t found Mew. The kid’s still at it, they say. It’s said he’s caught even more legendaries, like he has a way, like can track them down. It’s impossible. I don’t believe them.

I think I saw the kid today. He travels with a sense of purpose, like he already knows where he’s going. He has a device at his belt that he looks at every now and then. That has to be how he’s finding them. He can’t find Mew that way. Mew only appears to the pure of heart. How dare he? I should

I can’t risk him finding Mew first. I’m following him. If I’m there too when he finds it, Mew will choose me. I have the ball. Everything is ready. Mew will come to me.

May sighed. “So he just tailed Rick, I guess. What a waste of time.”

“What are you talking about?” Chaletwo said. “Apparently Rick had a device that led him to Mew. This is fantastic news. If we can get that device from him, we can track Mew down.”

Mark’s stomach twisted. They’d have to talk to Rick. Rick, whose brother they had killed. May looked away, silent.

“Well, if you really don’t want to, we can try to get some of the others to check that out and you can start looking in the meantime.”

May took a deep breath. “No,” she said firmly, and Mark blinked in surprise. “Let’s go see Rick. We can still make it tonight.”

She closed the diary, thrust it into Mark’s hands and turned around to exit the room. Mark motioned to replace the diary on the windowsill where he’d found it.

“Mark?” Scyther said quietly. “I’d… I’d like to read just a little further.”

Mark hesitated before opening the book again. Truth be told, he was a little curious as well, but the apprehension he’d felt before had only grown.

I think he knows I’m after him. He takes long ways around, leaves early in the morning like he’s trying to shake me off. He doesn’t fool me. I know better than to let him escape. I have a duty to Mew and I cannot fail it.

He’s gone. He left even before I woke up. Has he already found Mew? Sneasel may be able to smell him. I will try

Mew chose him. What they say about pure hearts is false. Mew refused me. Why? I don’t understand. I thought I understood but I don’t. Mew chose enslavement and brainwashing. I wanted to tackle him down and wrestle the ball away from him, but Mew made the choice. Why? I don’t underst

Why

Mew is gone. It’s gone. It thinks I’m worse than him. There’s nothing left. No point. Mew’s right. Goodbye.

I failed. Like at everything else. Couldn’t go through with it. Kabutops found me. What would they have done without me? I can’t leave them. It was cowardly. I have to move on, for them. It’s the only thing I can do.

Mark shivered, a knot of unease in his stomach.

Behind him, Scyther let out a long, heavy sigh. “That’s enough. Thank you.”

Mark nodded and placed the diary carefully back on the windowsill where he’d found it before he recalled Scyther and hurried out after May.


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