Chapter Five

Crisis in the Well!

Gold wandered through Azalea Town, looking for Crys and Falkner. Falkner had told him that he was going to cheer Crys up, and Gold thought that Flare's evolution would cheer her up immensely. With a loud crash, Flare came around the corner at full speed, quickly followed by Ledya.

"We didn't see them anywhere," he said, panting.

"Crap, where could they be?" Gold wondered. "It's getting late. Ilex Forest is too gloomy, they aren't in the main town... hey, what about that hill near the edge of the forest?"

"I didn't check there," Flare replied. "Be back in a sec..."

"Wait!" Gold said, drawing looks from the surrounding pedestrians. "You're tired. Back in your Pokeball, and I don't care how uncomfortable it is. You need a rest."

Gold started walking towards the hill, followed by Ledya. The moon started to rise. He left the bulk of the town's buildings, and he saw the hill instantly. It had a small house at its foot, and Volbeat and Illumise were dancing in a spectacular show. When Gold got to the house at the foot of the hill, a man came rushing out.

"I'll kill them if they harm the sacred Slowpoke!" he yelled at the top of his lungs.

"Wait, Grandpa!" a young woman yelled after him. "You'll get hurt!" But the old man was already gone.

"What was he going after?" Gold asked.

"Someone said they saw a shady man go down the Slowpoke Well. It's a sacred place for Azalea Town, because whenever there's a drought, there's always been enough water in the well. My grandfather, Kurt, is the caretaker." When she had said this, a bright, blue light erupted from the east, across town. "That was from the Slowpoke Well!" she yelled.

The blue light dissipated, and Gold rushed off to help the old man, forgetting about Crys and Falkner. About halfway through town, Falkner's Staravia flew into Gold. It tried to pick him up and drag him towards the Slowpoke Well, but Gold calmed it down. He stopped by the Pokemon Center, asking if someone could take care of it for a while, and rushed towards the Well again.

When he got there, the ground was wet and muddy, and he slipped and fell, sliding towards the hole in the ground that was the Well. He barely managed to grab the edge before he fell, and the Well was very deep, about twenty feet down, but it was bone-dry. Gold reached over to a ladder and climbed down, finding the old man, Kurt, and the bottom.

"Aaaahhhh!" he said. "I slid down and missed the ladder-I think my leg's broken! D-don't worry about me, though! The hooligans who drained the Well are deeper in. I can hear the anguished cries of Slowpoke-help them!"

"But your leg-" Gold said, thinking quickly. He looked around, and had Ledya gather some long, slender sticks. Then he used some string in his backpack to make a crude splint. "That should hold for now, but don't try to move very far. I'll be back for you later." With that, he rushed off.

When he heard voices, Gold slowed down and began to keep to the shadows, having Ledya stay high to alert him with a quick cry, should anything happen.

"That bird got away-I swear, it caught on fire! I dropped the cage and it broke, then the bird started glowing blue and flew off!" one voice said.

"Those kids that took out the guard are in the back. They put up a fight, too," another voice said.

"The guard got arrogant and bored, attacked the kids just for being there..." Gold didn't hear the rest of the sentence. It was Crys and Falkner! They were in the back, too. Now he knew where they were.

As he snuck around the corner, a guard in black clothes with a red "R" on his chest grabbed him. "Got the third one, too. Now we have three meddling kids. Executive Blake is gonna have fun with this one."

"Or not," Gold said. "Ledya, use Silver Wind!"

As he yelled this, two things happened. The first was, obviously, Ledya using Silver Wind. It knocked away the two guards standing over Gold, but then the bad part happened: all the surrounding guards heard this and sent out their Pokemon. Gold was now surrounded by Ekans, Koffing, Grimer, Gulpin, Zubat, and their direct evolutions.

"Crys is gonna hate me for this," Gold said and he sent out Flare, "but it has to be done. Flare, use Flame Wheel! Ledya, use Bug Buzz!"

As the two carried out their attacks, flying and running through to affect as many as possible, Gold made a mad dash for the back. The guards had told the truth about Staravia, as Gold identified the attack as Brave Bird, and they told the truth about the guard on the road. Why would they lie about his friend's location, in the hardest-to-reach place of the Well? But, as Gold had suspected, the Poison-types didn't care about the two attacking Pokemon. They were after Gold.

Rounding many corners and jumping over small streams, Gold eventually found his way through, powered only by adrenaline. He only came to one fork, and guessed it. He guessed right, too. There was a cage with Crys and Falkner at the end of the corridor.

"Flare, use Flame Wheel on the lock!" Gold shouted, grabbing his friends' attention. Flare rushed past him, jumped up to tackle the lock, and was blocked by a Crobat's Air Cutter.

"Ah-ah-ahh," said a voice. "I can't have you escaping after all the trouble you've caused us. All the Slowpoke tails we're... harvesting are raking in quite the profit. We can't lose that profit to some bratty teenagers, can we? Crobat, would you kindly use Air Cutter on that annoying Ledian?"

The Crobat sent out multiple blades of air, and, though Ledya dodged many of them, they knocked her out. But Flare was on Crobat's case right away, using Swift to keep it occupied and he came in close to slash and tackle. Crobat dodged many of them, but most of the Swift stars and a few tackles and slashes made contact. Then, Crobat caught on fire.

"Huh," Gold said. "I didn't use a fire attack."

"Gold!" Falkner yelled. "It's using Brave Bird! Get away! He's after YOU!"

Gold realized what Falkner said was right, but he couldn't move fast enough. The glowing, blue bat was rushing at Gold, ready to kill him...

"Slowpoke, use Confusion!" someone yelled. Numerous heads reacted faster than people thought Slowpoke could, their anger from losing their tails, along with chances of evolution, feeding their speed. Their eyes glowed purple, and Crobat stopped in midair. Then, it was thrown backwards, hitting the wall with a loud thud.

"Now, Slowpoke, let's drive these hooligans out!" the voice yelled again, and Gold recognized it as Kurt. He turned around, seeing Kurt having a few Slowpoke helping him move. The Slowpoke began to glow purple again, but this time, it was their whole bodies. After about ten seconds, Kurt began to head for the entrance as fast as possible with a broken leg. "Gold, I'd get your friends out quickly, because something bad's about to happen."

Gold turned around, but the guard's leader wasn't there. Gold had Flare break the lock, and Falkner put Crys on Pidgeotto so she didn't see the Poison Pokemon on her way out, then they all sprinted for the exit. Flare led the way for Falkner and Gold, using Flame Wheel to clear out any remaining challengers to his power, while Crys and Pidgeotto flew much quicker and picked up Kurt on the way out. As they began to climb the ladder, Gold withdrew Flare, and noticed that there was an ambient purple glow in the Well. Kurt yelled down, but the words were lost in the hypnotic buzz that began. Something about a Future attack... or seeing, no, Sight. Yeah, that was it.... Then, the purple glow intensified and seemed to explode with massive energy. Gold's vision went from purple to black.