Chapter 2: The Frost King
The following morning left her on edge. She dreamed of shapeless monsters with square heads and screams of rusty knives. Dragons of black and white clashed and breathed fire and lightning, adding to the miasma that was her subconscious. She did not sleep well that night. Olivia shivered and realized that during her fitful night, she had kicked the blankets and sheets off the bed. Joan had decided to sleep on the floor, just in case. Either that or Olivia accidentally kicked her off during the night while she tossed and turned.
"Coffee," Olivia grumbled, noticing her cracked voice and sensing the bags under her eyes. She must have talked more with Bianca than she realized. She hurriedly ran her fingers through her thick hair to get some semblance of order and left the room. Joan followed behind her, as a dog would follow their master. In this case though, it was out of protection after the incident the night before. It still gave Olivia chills.
She slowly tread down the steps to be greeted by Nurse Joy. "Did you sleep well?" At the shake of Olivia's head, Nurse Joy nodded sagely. "You heard the screams then."
"Yeah. Was that...was that Kyurem?"
"I think so. You can look outside and see for yourself."
Intrigued, Olivia wandered towards the sliding doors. She gasped at the sight. Everything was covered in a thick white rime and the air seemed bitterly cold, even though the sky was clear with the bright blue of autumn and the sun was beginning to melt the frost, creating puddles on the ground, water dripping from the laden branches. "Whoa." she breathed. "Did he do this"?
"It has happened once or twice in the past couple years. The most recent was right before Ghetsis was arrested, actually." Nurse Joy admitted. "Now that I think about it."
"Why would Kyurem do such a thing?"
Nurse Joy shrugged. "Because, he is nothing more than a monster who take pleasure in scaring away all of our tourists and trainers." she added. "Would you like some coffee, or tea?"
Nurse Joy nodded and handed her a steaming hot mug, the stream rising in tendrils and caressing Olivia's face, the scent perking her up. She took a sip, grateful for the warmth after last night. It was soothing and percolating, all at once. "This is good. Thank you."
"You're welcome." Nurse Joy poured herself a mug and sat down on one of the couches. "So, what do you plan on doing today? There are some cute stores and restaurants around here."
"I was going to do some training today. That's why I came here in the first place."
"You're going out, especially after today?"
"I'm not going to let that scare me out of training." Olivia argued, feeling incensed. "If Kyurem wants to scare me away, he's going to do better than that." She was tempted to tell the Nurse that she faced down both Ghetsis and N, claiming the trust of the Beast of Truth, Reshiram, but the chances of the Nurse believing her were slim to none. Besides, the woman already thought she was nuts, judging by the expression on her face; the last thing Olivia needed was to be hauled off to the nearest insane asylum because she spouted off such "nonsense".
"Kyurem isn't a normal pokemon; he is a living force of nature, the embodiment of ice and winter." The Nurse sounded fearful and Olivia couldn't blame her, after seeing what Kyurem could do within a span of a night.
"If you're so fearful of him, then why did you come here?" Olivia snapped, irritable and moody, the balming effects of the coffee gone.
"I came here to help people and pokemon, because no one else would do it," Nurse Joy scowled and Olivia seemed to shrink back in herself. "They were too scared to do it," she added quietly.
"The other Nurses?"
Nurse Joy nodded and Olivia felt ashamed. "I'm sorry, I didn't mean to snap. There's just been a lot on my plate recently. I wanted to go out somewhere, where I could clear my mind and refocus myself, find my place."
"There's no need to be ashamed of yourself. Everybody's been on edge. Maybe you can capture Kyurem," Nurse Joy said with a forced laugh. "Then everything would be okay then and maybe people would come back."
"Maybe," Olivia laughed as well, feeling like a horrible actor in a shoddily written play. "Maybe I will catch it Somehow, I highly doubt that."
Olivia wandered the woods around Lacunosa Town, on Route 13. How ironic that a number deemed unlucky would lead up to the supposed home of Kyurem, The Frost King. Giant Chasm was to be the home of various strong pokemon, including ones that were not usually native to Unova. The story went that they were the isolated populations of pokemon brought from the regions of Sinnoh and Hoenn by the original settlers of Unova; however as time passed and the settlers of Unova grew accustomed to the to the native pokemom, the pokemon brought with them were eventually abandoned and they banded together in this region, known for its isolation from large population centers, as if they were angry with the ancestors that abandoned them. Curiously though, they were not out today, the woods as silent as a graveyard, a disconcerting sight.
Olivia could pity them and understand their anger. Some days, it was she too was abandoned, shunted aside in favor of her "perfect" twin, the one who could do no wrong.
She reached for a pokeball and summoned Joan, desiring the comfort f her starter. Joan, sensing her trainer's distress, nudged her in the hip, avoiding skewering her trainer on the harpoon as she got a scratch under the chin. The air was still cold, the sun barely penetrating the rime coated on the trees. The ground was wet and spongy though, as the sun had already melted the frost liberally spread on the ground. The autumn scenery would have been a sight to see, if she were able to see the rich colors sealed away under the ice. The landscape looked more like it was trapped in the throes of midwinter rather than the edge of fall.
She wondered for a moment to get Caesar out, who could handle the colder weather as a fire type rather than Joan, who was a water type, but if wild Samurotts lived under thick ice floes and hunted their prey with their shell swords, then Joan could handle the brisk weather, even though she would probably protest about it later. Olivia wished she brought a thicker coat though, as her jeans and tee/jean jacket combo were not warm enough for the biting temperatures.
"Whoa!"She slipped suddenly on a rock ledge and she stopped herself by grabbing onto a thick knobbly tree root that protruded outwards. The ledge dropped at least seventy-five below her and she could see the tops of the trees underneath her; she must have come across Giant Chasm, home of Kyurem. Joan snorted in alarm and reached down, exposing the horn on her shell helmet. With her free hand, Olivia scrambled for the horn, finally grasping onto the horn, feeling the cool smooth surface. Then, with her other hand, she let go of the tree root and clung onto the horn. The horn slipped from Joan's head somewhat and Olivia froze. "Why don't I just get Achilles instead?" she asked herself. Slowly and careful to not lose her precarious balance.
"Achilles, help us out!" A colorful, winged raptor like pokemon appeared, with a scaly head and neck, with feathers around the base of his neck and the tip of his strong cord-like tail. He hovered over Olivia, unsure what to do. "Achilles, come closer so I can grab your talons!" Achilles flapped closer, talons clenched tightly as to not gouge his trainer. Olivia reached out and grabbed Achilles by the ankle and he squawked in alarm, startled. He understood what she was trying to do and after cautiously unclenching his talons, wrapped them delicately around Olivia's wrist in a strong but gentle grip. Olivia, now secure, let go of Joan's helmet and grabbed Achilles other ankle, repeating the movements. Achilles then flew upwards, depositing her back onto safe ground. Olivia slumped to the ground in relief and returned Achilles to his ball,thanking him for his good work.
"Let's not do that again, shall we?" she laughed weakly, still shaking after the ordeal. Joan shook her head. Curious, Olivia crept out to the ledge, just to get a better look at the landscape. The area dropped off suddenly to reveal a bowl like depression, densely populated with trees and jagged rocks. A thick layer of fog rested over the area like a heavy grey blanket. "So that's Giant Chasm," Olivia said in wonder. If she were an artist or a professional photographer, than she would have taken a picture to capture the image. It was like looking into the maw of a dangerous beast, which was a poor choice of words if Olivia thought so.
She looked to her left, then to her right, hoping for a safe passage down, rather than another ride on Achilles. There were no visible passages save one way down to her right, a steep slope that wound its way through sharp grey-black rocks that reminded Olivia like the fangs of a dragon. She swallowed, knowing that it would be arduous, and motioned for Joan to follow. The otter pokemon shook her head once more, possible thinking that her trainer was a lunatic, but nevertheless, followed her anyway. Somebody had to keep an eye on the human.
Olivia shivered as she made her way down the trail, the air growing thicker and thicker with moisture from the fog, painting everything in a pale gray pallor, to the point where she could no longer see the sun in the sky. Due to the treacherous terrain, she had sent Joan back to her pokeball, even though the otter pokemon could help provide extra help and balance when needed; Olivia didn't want injury to come to her first pokemon. She winced as she brushed up against one of the rocks, seeing a faint trickle of blood run down her fingers, but they were numb to feel the sharp bite of the stone. She had bruised and cut herself more times than she cared to remember. She flexed her hand, seeing how bad the cut was. I was minor enough, thankfully, to only get a band-aid when she got the chance to reach into her pack later.
Rocks fell and tumbled under her boots as she fought to find better footing in this environment. It was no wonder that very few people went down here. If the legend of Kyurem didn't scare them off, then the environment did. This truly was a safe haven for the transplanted pokemon of Hoenn and Sinnoh. Nobody could get them down here.
A shadowy thing flew in front of her and she tripped back, startled. She watched it fly off into the sky, where it was swallowed up by the fog. It was the first thing she saw all day and Olivia thought that maybe she should have stayed in town today, but Olivia was brash, if not stubborn, and had to prove the Nurse Joy a point. Thankfully she brought all her supplies with her, just in case she had to camp in the chasm for the night.
She was beginning to see trees now and the thanked the Legendaries for a relatively safe passage into the Giant Chasm. The leaves of the trees were dripping with the cold water of the fog, the fiery reds, yellows and oranges drab with the overcoat of gray. The place was cold as it was miserable, but Olivia wasn't going to turn back now. She reached for Joan's ball, but thought otherwise. To send out a pokemon in this would scare whatever chances of finding the mysterious "strong pokemon" her brother told her about.
"Maybe Hil sent me down here to get rid of me," she grumbled to herself, her voice oddly odd in the area. Of course Hil was too "perfect" to do such a thing; he could do no wrong. It was probably just a bad day to go training. "I'll find you, you stupid pokemon, if you even exist out here. No wonder Kyurem or whatever the heck he is likes it here. It gray and miserable and freaking freezing. I should have worn another pair of socks."
He awoke to a strange presence, in his home. He sniffed the air. What was it, he wondered. He snarled suddenly as he recognized it. The taint! The Beast of Truth decided to invade his home! As if destroying his true form wasn't enough, the Beast had to violate his territory as well! He screeched angrily, scattering the local bird pokemon. He stamped out of his cave, determined to make the intruder pay.
But wait, there was something else, a different smell in the air, one that he couldn't quite place. It was mingling with the scent of the Beast of Truth, a lighter smell. It was clouding his sense and he shook his head, trying to make sense of it. It smelt like, like...
No human has ever journeyed out here, into his territory. The last one who did was six full moons ago and Kyurem, The Frost King, took care of that intrusion. He stormed out into the open, deciding to find the human and to make them pay.
He wandered through the woods, the fog he created providing the perfect cover for his form, disguising his scent. The scent of the Tain and of the human was closer and closer and Kyurem knew he was on the right trail. Humans were such easy prey.
He froze, the sounds of branches breaking reaching his ears. He peeked through a grove out into an open glade, the fog providing no obstacle to his vision; he created it after all, perfect camouflage. He watched as a shadowy figure made their way through the glade, muttering their strange humans mutterings under their breath. He inched closer careful not to make any noise. This human looked different than the last one, with brown fur on their head and skin the color of fresh fallen snow. The human's eyes were the color of the sky when the leaves died and fell off. This human was distinctively female, he could smell that.
What he also smelled was the Taint of the Beast of Truth. He growled under his breath, the air cooling and crackling around him, slowly freezing the trees around him. Yet, as hard as he tried, he could not sense the Beast on her person. Humans carried pokemon in small round shells and He could sense them on the human bodies, but he could not sense Reshiram on her. It was a curious thing, a thing that demanded an explanation.
The Frost King sprung.
"Stupid rocks, stupid trees, stupid fog. . .," Olivia muttered under her breath, growing more and more moody. When she got back to the Center, she was going to make herself a gigantic mug of hot chocolate and watch the sappiest chick flick she could think of.
But only after she let her brother have, to put it mildly. "This was a freaking suicide mission."
The air dropped in temperature as she finished, snap freezing the trees, the water droplets in the fog turning into ice crystals, freezing, then melting on her skin. Her heart raced as her breath came out in white puffs. Her hand reached for Caesar's pokeball, on edge and ready to fight. Was it Kyurem, or was it something else entirely.
"Why are you here!" A voice rang in her head. It was deep and resonating, reminding Olivia of Reshiram's voice, yet it was like cracking ice in her mind. She collapsed to her knees, her hands clutching at her ears. She half -expected them to be bleeding.
"What do you want!" Olivia screeched o the wind, which was now picking up to a fierce tempo, grabbing and ripping at her clothes and skin like long fingers. "Who are you!"
"I am the Frost King and you have invaded my territory! Tainted child of the Beast of Truth, Reshiram! You are in my home!"
"Reshiram! I don't have him!"
"LIES!" The voice angrily shouted and Olivia screamed in pain as the voice blocked out all of her senses. Her head was fit to explode at this point. She curled up in the fetal position, weeping silently at the pain, her tears freezing on her cheeks. "LIES!"
In the fog of pain, Olivia turned her head, to see something moving towards her, with angry glowing golden eyes. The shadow moved towards her. "LIES!" the voice screamed once again and Olivia shouted in pain.
She blacked out.
One of the problems with writing Legendaries is giving them genders, for pronouns since you probably don't want to read 'Kyurem' all the time. So, for this story, Kyurem definitely has a masculine vibe and will be referred to as a 'he'. This is probably considered technically incorrect, since most Legendaries are genderless, but when I wrote him, he was definitely a male.