A hateful blizzard rages over the northern region of Sinnoh. Braving the evil storm while dragging a limp body behind him, a Lucario stumbles through the snow. His body was thin and muscular, but his meager fur and shorts appeared to do little to protect him from the strong winds. Seeing nothing but whirling snow and walls of rock around him, he searched in hopes of finding a cave to take shelter in.
He was cold and weary, but eventually managed to locate a big gaping hole in the side of the mountain. He tackled through the opening violently enough to be ramming through a brick wall as he threw the body he was carrying into a corner of the dank cave. Immediately he closed his eyes, as they burned in pain after having been ravaged by the storm. Collapsing on the ground he lay there panting for a while, not knowing whether to recover his exhaustion or start flailing about in order to regain his body heat.
Deciding that both options sounded like too much of a hassle, he instead sat up and crossed his legs in an attempt to enter a meditative state. That way, he could at least find the inner peace he craved so badly for a while.
He had barely gotten started before he sensed the aura of someone appearing behind him, at the mouth of the cave. The heavy snow has already begun covering up the tracks leading to it, as well as the marks left from the fierce battle that had recently taken place outside. Someone must have seen him enter it…
"Pretty gutsy of you to come alone…" the Lucario suddenly said out loud with a dark tone in his voice as his eyes remained closed, "Who sent you? Some human organization… Or are you a dog of the legendaries?" He clenched his fists a little as no one answered, and he sensed the foreign aura rapidly moving closer to him.
"No, I guess it doesn't matter…" the Lucario continued with a sigh, "Since you've followed me all the way here, there can only be one course of action…!" Cracking his neck and opening his eyes, the Lucario stood up and quickly turned around to face the approaching threat.
"OHMYGODOHMYGODOHMYGOD" an extremely high-pitched voice echoed in his ears, as a smooth ball of blue hair flew at him. The Lucario narrowly dodged it with a sidestep and saw that it was a fairly short creature with some kind of beak sticking out of it.
"I-It really is you!" the strange thing continued as her glee increased with every new pounce at him, "I'm your biggest fan! I love you! I've watched every episode over and over and o-"
"Wait!" the Lucario exclaimed terrified while dodging her grasps and fighting hard not to counterattack, "Y-You're not here to kill me!"
"Ki… I-I…" the short bird responded, mishearing him and beginning to blush a little, "… I'd LOVE to kiss you!"
"Simmer down!" Lucario shouted as he made a small leap back to avoid the thing's constant approach. As his vision grew less distorted, he saw that it looked like a blue baby penguin with a big head and… White nipples!
"I've never even seen you before, you crazy thing!" the Lucario yelled angrily as the Piplup before him finally ceased her attacks.
"But… You're 'Lonesome Wanderer Lucario', right?" she asked, looking at him confused with her beady eyes.
"I…" the Lucario mumbled, remembering that he had referred to as 'Lucario' before and was indeed wandering alone, "… Yeah, I guess you could call me that…"
"I KNEW IT!" the Piplup squealed loudly before again jumping up to try to steal his lips.
"Bastard!" Lucario yelled in disgust as he grabbed a hold of her head in midair, "You've got rabies or something!" He had expected a strong reaction from this, but instead the Piplup was just holding her hands in front of her with a brown, rectangular object in them.
"Can I have your pawprint?" the Piplup asked sincerely with a big smile on her face.
"W-What the hell…?" Lucario stammered as he searched the small penguin for some kind of storage space, "Where'd you get that from!"
"Home!" the Piplup giggled, "I've always dreamed of meeting you like this, alone in a cave somewhere, no one to interrupt the romantic mood…"
"…" Lucario stood in silence, not really caring about anything this wild beast had to say, "You wanted my… My… What did you want?"
"Pawprint!" the Piplup exclaimed happily, reaching out even more with the brown object, "I want to show it to all my friends to prove that I really did meet you!"
"Paw… Print? Oh, it's…" Lucario mumbled, examining the small thing which now reminded him to a miniature vat of wet cement, "… Like an autograph?"
"… A what?" the Piplup wondered, trying to cock her head to the side but instead moving her body diagonally since Lucario still had a tight hold of her.
"Never mind…" Lucario sighed while letting go of the tiny creature, making her fall to the ground and landing on her butt, "I'll give it to you, but then you've got to leave."
"Leave!" the Piplup exclaimed instead of 'Ow' as she hit the ground, "But… All my life I've been waiting for you! I'm your biggest fan! You're the best hero ever!"
"I have no idea what you're talking about…" Lucario said exhausted, tired of all the nonsense.
"Take…" the Piplup whispered as she remember all those practices she had in front of the mirror. She put on her best face as she gathered up all her courage and shouted, "… Take me with you!"
"Not a chance" Lucario responded bluntly, "I travel alone, and I don't need a pet."
"A-A pet?" the Piplup stuttered surprised, "No, as a partner! I… I can fight! I've traveled before! We'll-"
"I said 'not a chance', not 'maybe'!" Lucario interrupted harshly, the word 'partner' leaving a bad aftertaste in his mind, "I'm a 'lone wanderer', remember?"
"Yes! But together, we can-" the Piplup tried to continue, but was interrupted once again.
"THIS is why I travel alone, if you're wondering!" Lucario said with annoyance, "So that I don't have to put up with all this... This… What's that sound called that penguins make? Chirping?"
"… Pegu-nins?" the Piplup tried to repeat with a confused stare.
"I don't have any fish, if that's what you're looking for!" Lucario said loudly before pointing directly behind him, "And don't even think you're getting a piece of this one!"
They both looked at the large Pokémon that Lucario had dragged into the cave. Another bird-like Pokémon, it was larger and had a fiery tone of colors to its feathers. While Lucario remained oblivious, the Piplup could easily tell that it was a Combusken.
"Oooooh!" the Piplup exclaimed with admiration, "Did you hit her with your Aura Sphere? Or maybe your Aura Storm!"
"… My what?" Lucario asked, before ignoring the thought, "Well… It definitively got familiar with my fists, if that's what you're referring to!"
"Wow! You didn't even have use your special attacks!" the Piplup shouted happily as she bounced up and down, "That's soooo cool!"
"Cool?" Lucario said while making a short laugh to himself, "No, I just punched it in the face until it went down… Oh well, at least I won't be going hungry tonight!"
"Yeah! Hungry…" the Piplup continued bouncing before she realized what she had just said and became a bit startled, "… Uh, hungry?"
"Not hungry enough to bite into this slab of disease, of course! I've got to cook it first!" Lucario said as he scanned the area for fitting material to ignite, "Listen, if you help me with starting the fire, I guess you can have half a leg or something."
The awkward situation was broken as a pitiful groan was suddenly heard from the Combusken. Its senses were barely functional and its mind foggy beyond any recognition as it didn't know where or what it was. Running completely on instincts, it struggled to move.
"Whoa, still breathing?" Lucario muttered surprised while approaching it, "I guess I'll have to take care of that, first…"
"WAIT! STOP!" the Piplup yelled while running ahead of him, "What are you doing!"
"Well, I can't eat it if it's still alive!" Lucario responded as he moved even closer to the Combusken that had started flailing its right leg wildly, "Now shut up, you're ruining my appetite…"
"Y-You can't eat her!" the Piplup shouted in horror as the Combusken moaned frightfully, "She's a sentient being! An intelligent creature!"
"Not intelligent enough to avoid fighting me…" Lucario muttered as his stomach growled loudly, "Besides, I haven't had anything to eat but berries for five days. I'm starving for meat!"
"No… No way…" the Piplup stammered as she fell back, gazing up on her fallen idol, "Y-You're really a cannibal! Y-You're kidding, right!"
"Pfft, cannibal…" Lucario scoffed to himself before suddenly realizing something that made is mouth drop, "… Wait, what? You mean, Pokémon don't usually… Rather, Pokémon can't…" Something clicked in him at the sound of the word 'Cannibal', and he began to get worried that maybe there was a reason why this act was considered unnatural even between two different species of Pokémon…
"… Yeah, I was… I mean, of course I was joking around!" Lucario said slowly before picking up the pace, "I just wanted to scare Big Bird here a little bit. Now, scram."
"Oh…" the Piplup whispered, somewhat relieved. She knew her hero would never try something like that for real!
"Get with the scraming, already!" Lucario shouted, hoping the message would stick this time.
"Come on!" the Piplup continued her earlier hassling, "Let me be your sidekick!"
"No!" Lucario responded sharply and bluntly.
"I promise I won't get in your way!" the Piplup continued, not taking 'no' for an answer, "I'll even hide myself if I have to! And I've got lots of items that'll be useful-"
"You know, I'm not a lone wanderer because I want to be!" Lucario interrupted, so very tired of this whole conversation, "Just that those that follow me have a bad tendency to end up dead!"
"I…" the Piplup whispered as she closed her eyes before shouting in determination, "I'm not afraid of death!"
A few moments of silence passed between them, as Lucario stared at the little thing in front of him. He didn't know whether to be impressed with it or angrier at it. Looking outside the cave for an escape, he noticed that the snow had stopped altogether.
"What's with this climate…?" Lucario mumbled as he looked back at his lost meal with a starving stare. He realized that he no longer had any reason to stay, and began heading for the exit.
"Listen, come with me and you'll find nothing but death" Lucario tried to explain as calmly as possible while walking, "Give up on becoming my partner and go back to your home on the north po… I mean, south pole."
"I'll follow you wherever you go!" the Piplup replied cheerfully.
"Damn it! Do you ever stop!" Lucario turned around and growled irritated, as his stomach did the same.
"Oh wait… You're hungry?" the Piplup asked, her face lighting up, "That's perfect! I've got berries with me!" Before Lucario could blink the Piplup was holding several large berries in her hands, once again dazzling him as to where she had kept them stored until now.
"… Ugh" was all Lucario managed to say as he felt very disappointed, "… Really? Nothing else? I really hate berries…"
"Huh? But that's…" the Piplup said, looking over the brightly colored berries with a hint of hunger, "… I've never heard of a Pokémon that didn't like berries!"
"Oh, I'm not a Pokémon…" Lucario said lightly as he once again turned around and finally left the cave.
… And so begins the story known as "The Human Species". Just so you know, this will be last story I write related to Pokémon. But don't worry - It will also by far be the longest and without a shadow of a doubt the best thing I've ever written. Chapters will be short but more frequent, and streamlined for quality over quantity.
While waiting for the next chapter, you might want to read "Occult Magazine: Evolution's Gate", "Forever Legendary" and "Mew's Christmas Carol". The events and characters of these three stories will all eventually become relevant in this one, and although reading them is not necessary to follow "The Human Species" I promise that it will enrich your experience.