Delphox- male

Zoroark- female

Serperior- male

Alolan Ninetales- female

Noivern- male

Emolga- male

Mienshao- female

Leavanny- female

Martin woke, surrounded by the warm bodies of his Pokémon. Disentangling himself from the pile, he got up and stretched.

Glancing around, he checked his team. Delphox and Zoroark barely stirred from the nest the two had built. Serperior coiled around the perimeter of the warm fox nest. Ninetales curled her icy tails around her small blanket nest to the side. Noivern hung from a perch built into the ceiling. Leavanny had folded herself into a nest box set near a small book shelf. Emolga still snored from atop Martin's head, not bothered in the slightest by his movements. Meinshao flopped across a couch.

Wait, Leavanny?

Martin jerked back to look at Leavanny. Recognizing the Bug as the one that belonged to his mother, Martin took a second look at the room.

The familiarity of the unfamiliar had blinded him. Being a Trainer on a Gym tour, Martin barely noticed being under an unfamiliar sky or ceiling each morning.

Now focused, Martin catalogued the room. Or rather, rooms. The chambers were arranged like an apartment. The bedroom had nests designed for each member of his team, and the one Leavanny occupied. There were even extra nests and furniture. One door led to a well-stocked bathroom and grooming room. The other led to a large living area. A kitchenette occupied one corner, while the rest of the room had entertainments like a complicated climbing tower for Serperior and Emolga. Martin checked the two regular doors to find large store rooms, one full of preserved food, and the other full of Pokémon gear ranging from medicines to battle items to traveling gear. A structure resembling a vault door covered in warning colors covered part of the far wall. It was a lot more complicated, with dozens of pistons, bars, and strange circuitry patterns across it. Everything was lit by indirect lighting panels on the ceiling.

"Well, whoever put us here wanted us comfortable," Martin said to himself. Transferring Emolga from his head to a branch of the climbing tower, Martin set to work preparing breakfast. The pantry had plenty of Pokémon food, but relatively little human food.

Martin's serving was finished and eaten by the time Emolga woke up.

Feeling the touch of Emolga's mind, Martin let him in. Martin had discovered his Warrior Trait when he bonded his soul to a stray Fennekin. Once he began his Gym journey, he took to bonding with his Pokémon before considering catching them. If their souls worked with him, then he brought them onto his team. It had taken some time in the bigger libraries, but he had learned that his connection to Fennekin had enough power flowing though it to boost his team and qualify as a Warlord. Maybe it was an unfair advantage, to empower his team and have perfect coordination and communication in battle, but there were no League rules against it.

"Um, what?" As usual, Emolga simply spoke his mind. "I have no idea where we are. Which is really strange given the smell of this place. It smells familiar."

"I am as confused as you," Martin said. "We will be discussing our arrival here, but only after everyone is a wake and fed."

Nodding, Emolga snagged the dish of nuts and fruit slices Martin had already set out and began to eat. Over the next hour, everyone woke up and got their breakfast.

"Awake everyone?" Martin asked. The team affirmed that everyone was awake enough to think. "Good. Now, does anyone have any idea how we ended up here?" As he spoke, he leaned on his gift, letting the voices reach him.

Meinshao spoke up, her voice, as always, a whisper. "This place smells of us. Smells like we've been here for days."

"Even I picked up on the smell," Emolga said.

"And the training gear in this room is ideal for all of us," Noivern added his thoughts. It had to be his thoughts, given that his voice occasionally cracked glass when it was normal, and was infrasonic otherwise.

Ninetales retreated from the mind-delving she had been doing. "I can't find anything in any of our minds. Scattered fragments of broken sights and sounds but nothing more."

"So we were imprisoned, yet given comforts to make our stay comfortable," Serperior said. "How considerate. If only our jailors hadn't erased our memories."

Delphox had spent the whole talk looking through the books from the nest room. "Not prison. Books say shelter. Referenced riding out something, and living to see something else."

Zoroark stared in worry. "Are you being stupidly mysterious again, or are the books incomplete?"

"One, I am never stupid. Two, the books are incomplete. And have notes in Martin's handwriting, saying the books are true."

Martin sent soothing emotions through their heads before a fight could break out.

"Any idea why the dead tree sheets are incomplete?" Serperior never let go of a chance to insult paper books, much preferring electronic media.

Sparing a moment to glare at the snake, Delphox explained. "Books identify some state of dimensional distortion. Said that instructions are carved into the exit door."

Everyone stared. Even without being spiritually linked, thoughts flowed in parallel. Dimensional distortion? What have we gotten into?

"No use sitting around. Let's get outta here," Emolga glided toward the big structure.

"Wait," Martin spoke. "Leavanny, I don't know how you got involved in this mess. I don't know where mom is. But I do know that it will be easier to work and fight together if necessary if we link. Are you willing to go through with that?"

All eyes turned to Leavanny.

"Martin, you forget who you're talking to," Leavanny said. Martin could here both the chirps of her voice physically, and the meaning coming through as an echo via his team. "I was your mother's starter. I helped make your diapers. I couldn't leave you alone if I wanted to."

Martin bowed, respectful of his old nanny, before beginning the link.

Linking, creating a Warrior connection, a Warlord connection, could not be truly described. It was an act of soul. The best metaphor was that of one of those desk toys. The one where two colored liquids flowed, one up, one down. As the awareness flowed between human and Pokémon, they could hear each other's thoughts. Memories leaked through. Martin witnessed, felt, the memory of evolution, old carapace splitting off as new limbs grew. Leavanny felt an echo of the aches from Martin's last growth spurt. As the link stabilized, Martin and Leavanny felt their hearts beat in sync for a moment.

"Woah. I can feel their minds brushing mine," Leavanny's thoughts rippled through the link.

"Woah. I can feel their minds brushing mine," Leavanny spoke aloud, gesturing to the other Pokémon. She then heard their thoughts and perceptions as she spoke, generating an echoing loop.

At that point, Leavanny had a small breakdown from feedback.

Noivern waddled over and engulfed the bug in a wing hug while she came down from the fresh-link buzz.

Leaving Noivern to calm Leavanny, Delphox walked to the carved wall.

Delphox opened a small case, pulling out a crystal. Inserting it into a corresponding slot on the door, the mechanisms began to turn. It looked to be a slow process.

Martin decided to grab some supplies from the tool closet and the pantry. Whoever set him up had left ten cargo capsules and a set of armor reinforced bags designed for multiple body types. Strangely, there were no Pokéballs. The abundance of rechargeable technology and a cartography computer raised Martin's eyebrow. With nearly a month of supplies ready, there was nothing else to do but wait as the door opened.

After an hour, the lock disengaged completely. Martin turned the handle. The first waft of air came through. Everyone, even Martin, smelled something off about the air coming in through the door.

"There's nothing," Meinshao stated. "Not even the cold smell of a cave. All the scent is gone from this place."

The lack of smell was almost more disturbing than the smell of rotting flesh, which all of them had discovered on one route or another. The lack of light only made the situation more creepy.

Noivern started trying to map beyond the door with echolocation. Meinshao was on the ground, struggling to pick up the faintest hint of odor.

With Noivern leading the way, the team made their way to the bigger open area.

The unknown facility had no obvious lighting systems. Delphox had to provide a flame for illumination, and Serperior kept the air breathable. What little could be seen, showed a simple design. The walls had directions marked on them. Prints of various famous paintings interrupted the hall every dozen steps.

In minutes, they found light. Giant hoops of blue crystal oscillated around a green crystal ball. Somehow, the whole assemblage generated the light. The cavernous room had three hallways leading away, and massive version of the complicated vault door from before. One hallway had a sign labeled Records. The second, Supplies. A quick check identified that they had come from the Residential Wing.

Seeing Martin's gaze, Delphox noted their origin. "So we are residents? Then why the memory loss or lack of hallway lighting?"

"I really hope this isn't some sort of social experiment performed by demented scientists," Leavanny said.

Martin started walking towards the Records wing. Delphox headed to the door to see how it worked and how to open it. Ninetales took a look down the supplies hallway.

A long hallway stretched ahead, revealing doors. A few glances revealed rooms stacked high with shelving units. Half would feature long storage data disks, and the other half had variable contents. Statues, art, musical instruments, cultural relics from around the world.

One room, clearly fitted for books, had no books. The disks were missing. The shelves sat empty. Not that anything in the room would have carried a load, as all had been twisted and warped by unknown forces. Even the walls appeared warped. Martin linked and let the others see. Ninetales responded with images of gear-doors spaced wide apart in the Storage wing.

Returning to the intersection, Martin sat on a bench near the slowly creaking, clanking, and turning door.

The slow, methodical twisting and turning of the gears on the massive door were almost hypnotizing. Momentary, yet endless. Time stood still even as the gears marked a passage.

Eyes glazed from watching an endless dance of gears and screws blinked as the door started pulling apart along the middle.

The sunlight beamed in through clean air. Clean air that shivered with the voices of many Pokémon.

Peace reigned across the mountain. No name existed for the mass of stone and soil, as no name had ever been needed. All Pokémon knew that the mountain was the mountain, the safe haven from the savage madness that plagued all lands beyond its protective peak. No more than twenty miles from its base, space and time warped around various Mystery Dungeons. Only the mountain could keep them at bay.

The earthquake centered around the Great Cliff drew immediate attention.

Facing the sea, a smooth expanse of rock jutted perpendicular to the earth. The rumbling as the rock began to crack and fall apart left dens, natural and artificial, in disarray as everything trembled. The sky turned dark with swarms and flocks of flying Pokémon panicking or trying to get a view of the source of the disturbance. Hardly a single Flying Pokémon stayed on the ground. Most of the Levitating Pokémon even took to the skies.

As all of the Mountain community felt the quake the Ground Pokémon traced the trembling to the Great Cliff.

A crowd gathered and saw more parts of the cliff crumble away, revealing a massive structure. Gears, screws, and strange rods had lain immersed in the mountain for ages, now being revealed. The one Klinklang that had gotten into a position to observe began to sing a metal song to Magearna, believing the Clockwork Goddess at work. Several Fairies started to shift away from the gear.

With the last bit of the cliff that fell off, the full glory of the clockwork structure was revealed. Intricate patterns, confusing connections, and at the middle of the ground level portion, a strange crystal. Light emanated from the crystal in a way most similar to an aurora, or the dancing lights shining through clear water. The crystal pulsed, warping the light and distorting the center of the mechanism.

An archway of crystal gears , linked, turning, yet stationary, assembled itself in the distortion. The structure within began to turn, pulling back and revealing a space illuminated by an Unown light.

A group of Pokémon emerged, protectively surrounding a strange creature. Standing tall as a Slowking, it resembled an anemic Machoke with peach skin and a tuft of brown fur on its head.

Martin looked upon the world. Dropping to his knees at the sight of the sheer mass of Pokémon, he felt a collective thought build up among his Pokémon.

This bodes… something. Something big. Good or evil? Unknown.

Authors Notes:

This story takes place in a connected Heacanon I am making. It is first posted over at Spacebattles, in a Sidestory on my Expanded Pokédex thread. The Expanded Pokédex will be uploaded here at a rate of one chapter a day, starting tomorrow, until I have caught up.