A returned from Dewford Town with her second badge.

I'm no longer surprised by the voices' ability to coordinate during battle. Rather, I'm concerned with how strong her pokémon appear to have become. But if what Red said is true, maybe that's not such a bad thing after all.

At any rate, it's clear that I can't defeat her in a one-on-one battle. The new plan is to follow Red's last bit of advice and track down a fossil. Or rather, have A track one down on her own. Assuming the voices controlling A are the same ones that had control of Red, giving her a fossil directly might make them suspect that I'm aware of the situation.

Instead, I got my hands on an Itemfinder. With any luck, she might be able to find one on her own. If that doesn't work, I could always track one down and hide in somewhere nearby. To be honest, I'm not sure how a fossil is supposed to help, but then, nothing about this situation made any sense to begin with.

It happened again. My plan was to bump into A on route 110 and give her the Itemfinder, but I got this... uncontrollable urge to battle her. No, it's not quite that simple. It was like I wasn't in charge of my body anymore, and at the same time, I really wanted to test her strength. I lost once again, and afterward, the voices let me go. I gave her the Itemfinder, and we parted ways.

It was terrifying.

I don't want to go near her anymore. If I do, the voices can just take control of me, too. They made me give them my spare pokéballs, and just now, they made me battle them. Have they just come to expect it?

But there is some good news, if you can even call it that. During the battle, A spoke to me.

It was a bit hard to understand, but I'm sure I heard her utter "Help me" through gritted teeth. Not just once, but several times during the battle. She had the same frantic expression on her face as always, but there was more desperation in it this time. The voices may not need to sleep, but her body still does. The bags under her eyes are proof of that.

I wanted nothing more than to tell her "Okay," to reassure her that I am helping her, slowly but surely. But I can't. The voices expect people to ignore what's happening to her, and if I become the exception, they may decide I'm too much of a threat to keep around. If that were to happen, there'd be nobody left to save her.

For her sake, I had to act like I couldn't hear her.

I'm sorry, A. If I was more brave, I might be able to offer you some kind of reassurance. I promise you, you're not alone. You have at least one ally.

You're just not allowed to know it.