In the faraway region of Arcana, there is an anomaly with the moon that greatly enhances the power and ferocity of Pokémon and trainers alike. One night, every fifteen years, the moon shines the color of fresh blood and has the potential to warp the minds of any who are within it's presence. Kind and amicable Pokémon can be warped into vicious and savage killing machines without any control of themselves or their emotions. A simple master/servant relationship will produce no major changes. But the stronger the heart of the trainer and Pokémon, as well as their relationship, the more destructive they could prove to be under it's influence. For uncounted centuries, this illness (which took on the names of Crimson Madness or Crimson Fury) would terrorize the people of this ordinarily peaceful region, with many perishing in the heat of battle and other committing horrific crimes and soon waking up and having no idea of some crime they recently might have committed. This made for an uneasy situation, where anyone could be lost in a heartbeat.
Looking for a cure to this affliction and perhaps a way to inoculate all of Arcana from the wrath of the Crimson Moon, the renowned scientist Balthazar Aced and Arcana's beloved Pokémon League Champion James Kingston worked tirelessly in Balthazar's lab for weeks on end, but to no avail. After struggling without any major breakthroughs, a distraught Balthazar soon found himself under the influence of a powerful Pokémon known as Mewtwo, cloned from the DNA of the Mythical Pokémon Mew. With a bitter hatred towards mankind, the wicked Pokémon tricked the friendly and trusting scientist into revealing his knowledge of the Fury while also plotting to use the Fury to cause a massive genocide of humans and Pokémon to begin life anew. James managed to reach through to Balthazar in time and the two combined their efforts into driving off their greatest adversary, but Balthazar was gravely wounded in the process. With the volcano of Mt. Heatmor erupting behind them, Balthazar sacrificed himself to protect James and was destroyed in the inferno along with most of their research, save for a few journals he left to James.
Without his trusted friend and confidant, James was left to watch over the region, his best friend's research and Balthazar's ambitious son named Elezar. But the son of Arcana's most acclaimed scientist proved to be much easier to manipulate for Mewtwo. Blaming James for his father's death, Elezar and his accomplice Cassius Sinclair would lure James into a trap on the same grounds where Balthazar died and had the Champion die while protecting his home region from a man-made volcanic eruption. With James out of the way, Elezar and his allies were free to try and create an artificial means with which to put the Crimson Fury into someone. One who would be bound to the Crimson Fury all their life and be able to be weaponized for Mewtwo's war against mankind. But the trio needed a test subject for their first artificial branding, bringing them back to the Kingston Family and one of James's most important relatives: his grandson Michael.
Though James and his wife Bonnie Kingston would have a total of fourteen grandchildren (Jon, Victoria, Michael, Madeline, Christopher, Jenna, Cameron, Billy, Daniel, Ryan, Matthew and Kayleigh as well as adopted grandchildren in Katrina and Renee), it was Michael who's meteoric rise through the Pokémon League in his initial journey caught the attention and alarm of Elezar's new enterprise: the Syndicate. Using the vivacious and gorgeous Giselle Odelia from the Unova Region as bait, Michael was eventually lured into a trap where the Syndicate abducted him and used horrific and nightmarish experimentations on him, scarring the boy for the rest of his life. Their experiments proved supremely successful, as Michael was fully integrated with the power of the Crimson Fury and was slated to be the first of thousands of subjects. But the heroics of Michael's loyal Espeon named Icarus would help Michael escape, though the loving Pokémon would ultimately die due to injuries suffered at the enemy's hands. Losing himself into the Fury, Michael obliterated the lab he was kept prisoner in with his Dragonite, killing several Syndicate scientists, though Elezar, Giselle and Cassius were ultimately able to escape.
With the aid of a power-hungry old friend of James and Balthazar's named Claude Jacques, Michael was ostracized for his actions and tried and condemned a murderer. The loss of James had ultimately deprived the Kingston Family of much of their honor and as a result, the poor twelve year old boy had almost no one to turn to. His own parents, Grandmother and all he had looked to for love and protection in his life had abandoned him and left him to fend for himself, save for his angelic and nurturing Aunt Jane Kingston, who would ultimately pay a horrific price for defying the Syndicate's ambitions. Unable to control his emotions and deemed a menace to society, Michael was exiled from Arcana. The Syndicate soon put Giselle in an almost dictatorial position, where she had unlimited control and power, all while they were free to restart their plans for using the Crimson Fury to build an army of vicious killing machines. But their harsh restrictions and impositions ultimately drew a rise in opposition in the form of Arcana's Pokémon Professor Maria Pines and her granddaughters, both of whom had been close to Michael before his exile. Once they had uncovered the truth of Michael's torture at the hands of Elezar, the Pines Family began to plan a total opposition to Giselle, but Maria was arrested and charged with treason, forcing Julia and Piper to flee to the house of Christopher and Cameron Kingston. With Piper too young to travel, Julia recruited Christopher and Cameron to pursue a trainer with the moxie and power to defeat Giselle and free them from her tyranny.
Michael's four years of exile brought him to many places and into contact with many who would soon become lifelong allies and fiercely loyal and loving friends. Despite his fears of losing himself to the Fury and putting anyone in danger, the boy's good nature compelled him to keep helping people wherever he went. He would aid in the Kanto Region's Champion Mark Lionel in his quest to protect the Mythical Pokémon Mew from a crazed cloning scheme by Team Rocket and earned a lifelong friend and traveling partner. Mark and Michael would ultimately aid in the growth and protections of many people all around the world, including an up and coming scholar in the Sinnoh Region called Cynthia and a shy and introverted girl named Lizzie West in the Hoenn Region, who's family had been the guardians of a shrine to the Mythical Pokémon Jirachi for centuries. After warding off a murderous and dangerous poacher named Hunter Bastion, Michael found himself unable to feel comfortable surrounded by such loving and caring people and left on his own for exile, finding himself in the Orre Region. He then came under the tutelage of a sage trainer named Eagun and his granddaughter Rui, who watched over a sacred artifact called the Relic Stone and advised Michael to seek it's wisdom there.
It was in their home of Agate Village where Michael was found and reunited with Christopher, Cameron and Julia. The trio pleaded with Michael to accept their apologies and return to Arcana with them to confront Giselle, having heard of his deeds and growing prowess as a trainer during exile. But Michael still doubts himself and refuses to return, sending a distraught Chris and Cameron back to Arcana. Julia, however, refused to leave and confessed to her best friend her love for him. The two remained in Agate Village for some time, until Michael was brought before the Relic Stone by it's guardian, the Mythical Pokémon Celebi. Celebi temporarily cleansed Michael of the dark feelings in his heart and helped him see more clearly, taking Julia and his old friends in Mark and Lizzie back to Arcana to confront Giselle.
Michael's return setback much of the Syndicate's plans and a vicious rebellion soon brought Giselle's regime toppling down. Cassius and Elezar soon escaped into hiding and left Giselle hung out to dry as she was arrested and condemned to life imprisonment for all of their crimes. With her regime defeated and freedom restored to Arcana, Michael is fit to leave his former home, but is compelled by his family to remain and take up the mantle of Champion. The reign of Michael Kingston in Arcana would prove to be one of reconstruction of both relationships and a region torn apart by fear and doubts, with Michael himself, Christopher, Cameron, Mark and Lizzie at the helm of the Pokémon League. Though peaceful, Michael was constantly worn down both by the mantle of being Champion itself as well as the politicking of his relatives, in particular his Grandmother Lady Bonnie Kingston and his mother Erin Kingston. Julia, having recently taken over for her Grandmother as the Arcana Pokémon Lab's lead Professor, strongly recommended her lover retire from the throne of Champion, but defeating him in battle proved an impossible task and Michael was left to wait and see if a trainer would rise to challenge him. In the meantime, after several close encounters with old enemies from their past, Michael began a long and tasking manhunt for the remnants of the Syndicate, who were trying desperately to regroup after their colossal defeats at his hands. In their exploits, Christopher and Cameron would soon become guardians of their own Mythical Pokémon when Christopher rescued Manaphy from Hunter and Cameron defended Liberty Island's Lighthouse from a few Team Plasma grunts and became the friend of Victini.
As the Syndicate began to regain power and another war loomed on the horizon, Michael's youngest cousins were preparing to embark on their own Pokémon Journeys throughout the Arcana Region. Twin brothers Ryan and Matthew Kingston, alongside their lifelong friends Addison Tenton as well as Holly and Tommy Queensbury, all set out from the tranquil Parlor Town on quests either to befriend Pokémon, compete in the illustrious Queen of Arcana Pokémon Contests or to one day dream of unseating Michael as the region's League Champion. While these innocent dreams began to unfold, the Syndicate had regrouped handedly, having recruited the likes of Claude Jacques, Hunter Bastion and other scoundrels from around the world including Team Rocket's former second in command Archer and the Daughter of Flames and Team Magma's chief lieutenant in Courtney. With Mewtwo returning to oversee the final stages of their plans in Arcana combined with the growing tensions between Michael, his Elite Four and the rest of Arcana, the Syndicate struck at the heart of the beloved Champion, believing to have wiped him and his friends out and bringing about a new age for their region.
Ryan and his friends, fearing the worst had happened to Michael and the others, tried in earnest to continue on their journeys without their idol and did their best to follow in his ethics of befriending Pokémon and becoming the best people they could possibly be. But the jealousies between brothers as well as the budding romance between Ryan and Addison drove a wedge between Ryan and Matthew, with the latter being sought out by the Syndicate to serve as one of their own. After Matthew's secret defection, the Syndicate began to strike once more, rapidly abducting people off the streets of Arcana to be used in branding experiments to put the Crimson Fury into them artificially and bringing about Elezar's rise to power. Not even Ryan and his friends were safe, as soon Addison, Holly and Ryan himself were kidnapped and used for experimentation. The bravery of Tommy Queensbury, the unfailing moralities of a fringe internet group known as ArcResistance, the defection of Elezar's daughter Jocelyn Aced and the unexpected return of Michael and the Elite Four managed to spare the worst indignities being done to Ryan and Holly, but Addison was not so lucky and was taken to the Syndicate's base of Mt. Heatmor as a hostage. Determined to rescue Addison and put an end to the nightmare that had haunted him all of the last fourteen years, Michael recruited a vengeful Giselle Odelia and prepared his family for war.
The Kingstons and all of Arcana chased the Syndicate to the slopes of Mt. Heatmor, where a fierce battle took place for the salvation of all of Arcana. Ryan, Michael and the Elite Four took on and utterly trounced the Syndicate's many administrators, with many being arrested and taken into custody. But such a fate did not await for others, as Hunter and Courtney were all believed to have been murdered in battle, while both Matthew and Claude escaped into exile after being defeated (the former being taken by Jocelyn for the Johto Region to be rehabilitated away from the path of hate and evil). The battle took it's toll on the Kingstons, as the Elite Four withdrew due to exhaustion and injury and Michael, having lost faith in himself and believed he had lost Julia's love, succumbed to the Crimson Fury and used it's power to utterly obliterate Cassius Sinclair in battle and used it to brutally scar Elezar and nearly murder him. But through the words of Julia and Ryan, Michael was able to free himself from it's influence if for a moment, prompting Mewtwo to reveal himself and take control of Michael, Addison and the entire army of Crimson Branded hostages. Pushed against the wall, Ryan makes a heroic sacrifice and allows Mewtwo to Brand him, using the time to seal Mewtwo in a prototype Master Ball and free the hostages from his control. The Elite Four took the Master Ball and hid it away, while the efforts of Professor Krane from the Orre Region managed to remove the artificial brands from all who had been afflicted by it.
With the battle over, Michael officially announced that this last League Championship would be his last, regardless of the outcome. He reconciled with Julia and the two were soon married in front of their loved ones in Kingston Castle. Ryan was made an overnight sensation, winning many fans and admirers for his bravery, with his biggest fan being Addison herself, as the two would soon become an official couple after both recovered from their brandings. Ryan took his heroic deeds into the Pokémon League Championship Tournament and faced the best the League had to offer. After dispelling Holly, his father Robert Kingston, Mark Lionel, Giselle and Cameron in battles, he faced his idol Michael in a wicked battle that ended with the young prodigy barely edging out Michael. With Ryan taking up the mantle of Arcana's Pokémon League Champion, Michael and Julia were free to depart for their new home in the Kalos Region, Julia pregnant with the couple's first child. Meanwhile, in the Johto Region, Matthew and Jocelyn began the long journeys to change themselves for the better and the broken fragments of the Syndicate schemed for their revival.
Time passed in Arcana, as Ryan's reign was initially as peaceful as Michael's first few had been. While Ryan had to become used to his new celebrity status, he and his friends embarked on a series of fun and lighthearted adventures. While Addison and Holly intended to rival one another as the Queen of Arcana and compete with the seemingly unbeatable Piper Pines, relationships and friendships were strengthened as Ryan befriended the jovial and good-natured Jeremy Lockhart and Annette Fiveroux and both Christopher Kingston and Giselle Odelia showed signs of having matured and reformed respectively. As Michael and Julia enjoyed their time in Kalos with their growing family and Ryan welcomed a new sister in Kayleigh Kingston into the fold, it seemed as though life in Arcana was finally settling down for once.
Which was of course when things began to go wrong for everyone. Ryan began to suffer from an enduring stretch of dreams where he was haunted by a mysterious siren calling out to him in his sleep. With Ryan beginning to derail, Arcana was soon swept up in a sudden and unexpected storm that struck Parlor Beach. Julia's rising successor as Arcana's Pokémon Professor, Amanda Fouritz, disappeared in the storm and Ryan's Elite Four was left to clean up the mess when Ryan was found washed up on the beach. The unexpected death of Bonnie Kingston also threw a wrench into everyone's plans, as Michael (the primary benefactor in Bonnie's will) was forced to return to Arcana with Julia and their daughter Arya. Upon arriving, Julia also gave birth to the couple's son, named for his great-grandfather in James. With almost no time to recover, Arcana was soon swept up in the news of an upcoming spectacular Worldwide Tournament to be held on a mysterious island called Mirage Island. Michael's old friends in Cynthia, Lance, Diantha, Wes and Steven Stone combined to form what they were calling the Pokémon World Tournament, which would not only reaffirm their cooperation and friendships in times of peril, but also instill friendly competitions between the regions. When Gym Leaders were unexpectedly banned from competing, Ryan ultimately recruited the Elite Four, Jeremy Lockhart, Annette Fiveroux, Tommy Queensbury, Addison Tenton, Piper Pines and a reluctant Michael (after a spat between Daniel Kingston and Cameron Kingston resulted in Daniel being kicked off the roster) for Team Arcana's roster, but his plans for strategizing the Tournament soon went awry as the sudden reappearance of his childhood friend Avery Frost years after she was presumed dead threw his plans for a loop.
The Pokémon World Tournament kicks off without a hitch and Team Arcana finds an unexpected amount of success throughout the duration of it. But as the Tournament progressed, those competing noticed that when defeated, the participants would vanish to parts unknown, leaving an aura of uncertainty around the whole Tournament. Adding insult to injury was some more old enemies of the Kingston Family reemerging on the Island, including the infamous Shadow Triad from Unova, Courtney and Hunter, adding fuel to the paranoia that the Syndicate was regaining strength again. Yet despite losing Jeremy Lockhart and Annette Fiveroux early in the Tournament, Team Arcana and their secret alliance with Team Sinnoh proved to be a difficult foe to overcome. While most of their teams were off competing, Ryan and his new friends from Sinnoh in Dawn and Lucas were embroiled in a quest to reunite Avery with her family on the island, slowly losing their memories in the process as they were falling under the influence of the terrifying nightmare inducing Pokémon called Darkrai. Not even Ryan's new friendship with the last of the Mythical Pokémon, Shaymin, can keep him from sliding into the Syndicate's trap. With Ryan's memories eschewed, he began to lose his most cherished ones and found his heart being forcibly drawn towards Avery, to the chagrin and fear of Addison. Ryan would encounter his brother Matthew on the island and the two would renew their hate-fueled rivalry with one another, only for both Jocelyn and the Syndicate to intervene and end the match in a draw.
With many of the best trainers occupied in the World Tournament, Claude Jacques unexpectedly resurfaces in Arcana with an army of thugs and mercenaries, sweeping through various towns and villages in pursuit of what he claimed to be his legitimate birthright as a King of Arcana as well as the Master Ball containing Mewtwo. Within a few days, he had seized half of Arcana as his own and taken both Victoria Kingston and Alison Kingston as hostages, using Alison as leverage to force Ryan and Matthew into battling for their mother's freedom. Claude also dispatches his minions to attack Mark Lionel and Lizzie West in their home regions of Kanto and Hoenn to both discover the locations of the Master Ball and to acquire the Mythical Pokémon they possessed from them, succeeding in the latter. With the Syndicate gaining strength and the Kingstons waning, Julia found herself in the unenviable task of leading Arcana in her husband's absence, relying heavily on her in-law Jon and his fiancé Annie Tress to help her through this task. But despite their best efforts, Courtney's schemes prove to be too much for them and Claude soon finds out the location of Mewtwo's Master Ball with the unwilling aid of Cameron Kingston. Mewtwo is freed and after fossilizing both Daniel Kingston and Addison's father, prepares for his masterstrokes in Arcana and on the Island.
When Michael and Addison discover that Mirage Island is itself in an entirely different dimension called The Realm of Dreams, the duo try in earnest to find the rest of their team and escape from the island, managing to find Tommy, Giselle, Christopher and Piper, as well as recruiting his old friend Rui after Wes was defeated in the Tournament. Giselle leaves to try and find Cameron or Ryan, ultimately being bested in battle by both Cameron and Courtney (who was pretending to be Cynthia the entire time). The group learns, too late, that Avery Frost was actually a shadow of herself that was recruited by the Syndicate. Despite Ryan's trust and feelings for her, Avery lured her only friend into a trap under false pretenses and allowed Courtney and Darkrai to "eliminate" him as they had many others in the Tournament. Darkai put Ryan into the Dark Void, ensnaring him in a seemingly endless sleep and then hooking him up to a Dream Harvesting machine that would convert his and all the others dreams into energy to make Mewtwo much more powerful. Courtney used Ryan's captivity to lure Michael into a trap, having Avery isolate Addison in a pit and capture the former champion, bringing him to her as a prisoner. Obsessed with Michael due to memories she claimed to have of a past life the two had shared, Courtney tortures him to make him remember. Addison is at Avery's mercy until Jocelyn and Matthew arrive and free her, the trio combining their efforts to defeat and compel Avery to help them right the wrongs done to Ryan and the others.
After struggling to convince a distraught and depressed Cameron to come with them, Christopher and Piper learn of Michael's capture and rush to the rescue of Ryan and Michael, with Cameron following them. Christopher, unable to lose his prodigal brother and best friend again, chooses to make a desperate rescue attempt, ensuring his sister keeps Piper safe, with he sharing a kiss with his newest flame in Arcana's Contest Queen. Christopher fails and is eliminated by Courtney and Darkrai, but Piper and Cameron join up with Jocelyn, Matthew and Addison as they rescue Ryan from the Dream Harvester and bring him deeper into the Syndicate Base to reawaken him with the power of another Legendary Pokémon named Cresselia. Courtney takes charge of the situation and convinces Mewtwo to warp Michael's mind against his friends and use his broken body and his Pokémon to finish off Team Arcana. But their efforts prove in vain as Addison manages to awaken her love Ryan and the two combine their efforts and free Michael from his mind control. Mewtwo attempts to force Avery to put them all into Darkrai's Dark Void, but Avery uses her Pokémon companion's power to turn against her masters and help the others escape. Jocelyn remains behind to buy the group a bit more time and Matthew, Ryan, Addison, Cameron, Piper and a broken Michael manage to escape Mirage Island, to Mewtwo's fury. The group is broken and emotionally spent, but do not have time to rest as they return to find Arcana torn apart by war and destruction.
As Team Arcana and their allies lick their wounds, however, Mewtwo enacts his most cruel and twisted desires by using the newfound power he had gained from harvesting the dreams of his hostage Pokémon and their trainers to compel the Pokémon of the world to rise up against their masters and leave for the wild. Most of the world's Pokémon abandon their trainers, with Claude and a hacker ally stealing the rest that were stored in computers and concealing it on a flash drive. Ryan, Addison, Michael, Cameron and all of the rest are left with hardly any Pokémon on their side and with an increasingly dire situation both on Mirage Island and in Arcana. With Claude posing a danger to all of Arcana and Mewtwo to the entire world, Arcana's greatest defenders left to a small ragtag group of Pokémon that were too loyal to depart and some tenuous alliances and relationships on all sides, the only hope the Kingstons have left to cling to is the final words of a letter sent to Ryan and Addison by Avery from the Realm of Dreams that read:
The White Mage is coming...