(A/N: So, fun fact! Recently I got back into Pokemon, with the upcoming release of HeartGold and SoulSilver (squee! Ahem, sorry.), and back into the fandom! This is about some characters I used to have and updated so that they weren't complete, awful Sues/Stus. The story is based on a mix of game and anime(which I haven't watched in ages, I will admit) rules, but the story comes first. So if something is off, it's probably because I either didn't know X does not work that way, or it needs to for the plot. This includes Pokemon who seem to be in the wrong regions, because while I'll try to avoid it, I may not know that it's from a different one. Let me know if I put something in the wrong region, and I will do my best to avoid future mistakes. I promise to try not to screw anything up too badly. Just a heads-up.

Insert obligatory witty disclaimer that does absolutely nothing legally here. Also, some Pokemon behavior is based off of Chencheya's totally awesome fic, Beginning Trainer's Guide to Pokemon, which you should go read immediately after this. )

"Blaze, use Ember! Tsunami, Water Gun!" The Trainer looked on helplessly, knowing she was fighting a losing battle – she was outnumbered, and these Team Rocket people were surprisingly tough. Shadow knew she was afraid, he could smell it, and that scared him too. He'd beaten – barely – a Nidoran one of them had used, but it had left him exhausted and weak. He still refused to return to his Pokeball, instead supporting himself against his Trainer's shin, determined to see this through. The Umbreon heard a low growl and turned his head. Another one of the weirdly-dressed humans had appeared behind them, a Raticate at his side. Shadow snarled in answer to the rodent, getting Katie's attention. She looked around, and her eyes widened. "Oh, no," he heard her mutter, before grabbing one of the Pokeballs from her belt. "Amethyst, I choose you! Confusion!" The Espeon eyed the Raticate as its human snapped, "Hyper Fang!" Amethyst focused, tail swishing as the rodent lunged. Shadow wondered, not for the first time, how she kept her cool so well. He supposed it came with being psychic. The Raticate suddenly stopped, looking dazed.

"What are you waiting for? Attack!" shouted the human. The Raticate charged – directly into a tree. Shadow winced slightly. That had to hurt.

Katie smirked a little. "Keep it up, Amethyst, don't give it a chance to recover!" she called, turning back to check on Blaze and Tsunami and tensed. Blaze was wrestling with a Vulpix, both snapping and clawing, while Tsunami was firing off quick bursts of water at a Beedrill, which was dodging back and forth, waiting for a chance to attack. The girl clenched her jaw, looking around again. With the last Rocket's arrival, she was cut off – nowhere to run. She knew it was bad, Spark had already had to return to his Pokeball, but she glanced down at Shadow and forced a smile and a quiet "It'll be okay, I promise." She quickly crouched down and scooped him into her arms protectively. He looked up at her for a moment, then over her shoulder at Amethyst. He was just in time to the see the Raticate flop over into an exhausted, pained heap, and then returned to its Pokeball. Looking back, he saw Blaze disentangle herself from the Vulpix, clumps of fur caught in both of their claws. Katie seized the opportunity, shouting, "Blaze, Tsunami! Switch!" They sprang into action, moving quick enough to briefly confuse their opponents as they traded places. "Now – Blaze, Flamethrower! Tsunami, use Water Gun!" She grinned as they forced the other Pokemon to go on the defensive. Katie didn't hear the calm, low voice from behind, but Shadow did.

"Houndoom. Crunch." The Umbreon hissed loudly, unconsciously unsheathing his claws. Katie looked back and gasped as the canine leapt."
"Quick-" She wasn't fast enough. Amethyst yowled in pain as the Houndoom's jaws snapped closed on her. She stumbled, then crumpled to the ground, unconscious. Katie made a faint, scared noise before pulling herself together. "Return! Holly, let's go! Body Slam!" She checked on Blaze and Tsunami. The Flareon landed a hit on the Beedrill, which fell back, but at an order from its trainer, managed – just barely – to charge Blaze and hit hard before falling out of the air and being recalled, forcing Katie to do the same with Blaze. She looked helplessly towards Holly as the Leafeon was taken down with Fire Fang. The grunt who'd been using the Beedrill now sent out a Butterfree. Three mostly-healthy Pokemon – no, two, Shadow corrected himself as Tsunami brought down the Vulpix, but two wasn't all that much better – against one healthy and one who was almost collapsing.

He wriggled out of Katie's arms and dropped to the ground, wobbly, but determined. He eyed the Butterfree as Katie ordered Tsunami to go for the Houndoom, ignoring the Butterfree's trainer 's amused, condescending suggestion to just give up and hand over her Pokemon now. Shadow knew the order that was coming before Katie gave it. He bared his teeth and, although with an effort, blasted a Shadow Ball at the Butterfree. The insect Pokemon was knocked backwards with a pained chitter, and Shadow heard a sound of pain echoed from behind. He didn't have to look back to know who it was, Katie's fear-smell worsening was answer enough, even if she hadn't followed that with a shaky "Return." Two against one, and he was barely standing. Digging his claws into the dirt, Shadow snarled a challenge anyway. He'd be damned if he'd roll over and show his belly before he did everything in his power to protect his Trainer. He'd be damned if he did it at all!

"Sleep Powder." The man looked at his Butterfree. "Her too."

Katie snarled something insulting at him, but his Pokemon had already dived at Shadow, and his attention was given over to trying to stay awake as his eyes grew heavy. He managed a last look at Katie and saw her fold, collapsing ungracefully to the ground. And what else could he do but follow suit?