A/N: So, two tagday weekends and one FTX later… basically cadets has kept me really busy. If the plot line so far has confused someone, just ask me. I'll answer your questions at the start of every chapter.

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Hero's Born and Made: Zeia's Story.

In the Heart of an Empath.

Chapter Four.

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Zeia slept through the entire hour long flight. In fact, she slept through the landing as well. Glancing at her clearly exhausted face, Alex chose not to wake his niece up. She deserved some rest after finally breaking free of her parents grasp after all.

"You should eat more," Alex told the sleeping aristocrat as lifted her off the Swanna's back. His Swanna was returned to her Pokéball with a flash of red light, and he set off for Professor Juniper's lab with Zeia cradled in his arms. The egg lay cradled against her stomach and between her arms as they walked forwards.

When Alex got to the door he encountered an unforeseen problem. He didn't have any free hand while carrying Zeia, so how could he knock? Maybe he should kick it? Luckily a strange young blond came to his rescue.

"Are you looking for the Professor?" She asked him. Alex took a minute to study her before responding. She had fluffy blond hair and a big green hat on her head. Her face was also framed with red glasses. Over all he thought she looked around eighteen or nineteen.

He glanced back at the sky before speaking. How long did they have until police started looking for Zeia? "Yes I am." He told the blond. "It is very important." Alex hoped that the urgency in his voice would convey how important this matter was.

The blond glanced at him apologetically. "Professor Juniper is away visiting her father and will not be back for two days. You'll have to wait until then." Alex could feel his teeth grinding. They'd definitely be caught if they stayed near here for two whole days!

"Please, you have to understand!" he begged her. The desperation in his voice was palpable. "This is a matter of the lady's life or death, her freedom or imprisonment, you have to help us!" His deep blue eyes seemed to burn into the blonds mind. "She'll never be allowed to go on her journey if they catch us!"

A moment passed, and a life time.

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Bianca remembered a girl. A clumsy girl with overprotective parents who'd practically ran away to see the world with her Pokémon. She remembered the joy and the excitement that her journey had brought, but most of all she remembered the freedom.

She'd felt oppressed at home. Practically smothered by her worried parents, she'd never gotten to be free until she left. Even after leaving it took Elesa's intervention to convince her father to let her go on rather than home. She knew without a doubt that she would have withered away and died on the inside had she been forced to return home.

The delicate black haired girl in the sailor's arms reminded her of herself, and that was why she had to help them.

A moment passed, and a life time. Bianca made her decision.

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"You can stay at our house until she gets back." The blond offered with a hesitant smile. "I'm Bianca, Professor Juniper's assistant, by the way."

Alex nodded in thanks to Bianca. "I'm Alex Mathews and this is my niece Zeia Cooper." After the introductions were done, Bianca started leading them across the small town. They ended up in front of a large cream house with a navy roof.

"This is my place. My friend Cheren and some other friends also live here." She gestured at the door before opening it for him. "There should be five of us living here, but three of them are off elsewhere this week, so you should only run into Cheren and me."

She led Alex, who was still carrying Zeia, to a bedroom. "This is the guest room." She told him. "We only have one, but you can have the couch." Eventually the two of them got the sleeping girl settled under the covers of the guest bed and her stuff settled at the foot of the bed. After that Bianca led Alex to the living room.

There was a black haired young man with glasses sitting on the couch. Bianca introduced him as Cheren to Alex.

"Alex and his niece Zeia are staying with us until Juniper comes back." She told Cheren. He went to ask a question, probably why they couldn't go to the nearest city and stay at a hotel, but she interrupted him. There was a hint pained remembrance and desperation when she spoke next. "She's forbidden to go on a journey, Cheren. Running away like this is her only chance. If the police catch her she'll be brought home and held under lock and key. We have to help!"

For a second Alex saw them glancing at each other. It was clear that they were speaking nonverbally, something only friends who truly knew one another could do. These two were that close.

"They can't get into the house without a warrant, and they won't have one because they won't know she is here." Cheren told the room at large. "Everyone deserves a chance to go on their Pokémon journey, so let's give her a fighting chance." The smile on Bianca's face was blinding.

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In the end they all sat down for tea. Zeia was dead to the world in the guest room and Bianca wanted to know more about her.

"Well," Alex started, "It all comes down a race that lived along side humans and Pokémon thousands of years ago. They were far closer connected to Pokémon than any human could be and they lived longer than us too."

"You mean the elves, right?" Cheren queried as he picked up his tea cup. Alex nodded.

Bianca glanced between the two men before racking her brain. She knew she'd heard of the elves, but she could not remember where. It was like trying to remember the name of a song you'd heard in you childhood. It sat on the tip of your tongue but never came out. Shone in the center of your mind then wiggled away when you tried to retrieve the information. Bianca's eyes narrowed. She could almost remember… a melody?

Alex leaned forwards as he started explaining in earnest. "They were a different kind of person, another race if you will. They could speak to Pokémon, and were better connected to the earth than humans were. It was them who supposedly taught humans and Pokémon to work together rather than fight."

"Why aren't they around now? What happened to them?" Bianca asked him.

A somber look filled Alex's face as he spoke next. "There was a great war between elves and humans over a misunderstanding. The stories say that all the elves died on that battlefield, and that later it sunk underground so that no one could take the elves bodies from the earth and misuse them." He saw Bianca open her mouth again and held up his hand to stop her. "The elves blood could be used to give strange and wonderful powers to those whose mother ingested it while they were in the womb. By now we know that it was their powerful blood bonding with the infant and giving it elf like qualities, but back then it seemed like the blood was magical."

"People would have killed to have a child born with 'magical' powers in their family." Cheren added. "They would have said it was proof of being chosen by whatever legendary they worshiped. It would have meant great status and wealth to them."

Something just kept nagging in the back of Bianca's head. She was so sure they were missing something. "What sort of powers?" she asked distractedly. Nether of the males noticed that she wasn't all there.

"You ended up with a huge range of different powers." Alex told her. "Your kid could be gifted in the mental arts: they could be an empath, a clairvoyant, read minds, see the future, move things with their minds, or see people's auras. They could be physically gifted as well: being able to jump to and from insane heights, run super fast, have amazing stamina, be incredibly fast, be very graceful, be unusually stealthy on their feet, and be very flexible. Some were said to play and sing better than gods and others were so beautiful they were hailed as gods."

Cheren spoke up next. "If just gaining a bit of genetic material from ingested blood did all that, then what if they cross bred with humans? Would their gifts be stronger?"

"Immensely so," Alex informed him. "Not only were they more powerful, but the mixed blood children could often have several of those abilities at once. They also aged slower than your average human did, but not by a much as the elves were said to."

"The old tales say it was like time forgot to take the elves." Cheren said. He totally missed the sudden light that lit up Bianca's eyes at that.

"'For those who time has forgotten!'" She squealed excitedly. The blond jumped up and pulled a confused Cheren into a dizzying dance across the living room. "That's it! That is what I was trying to remember!"

"Um, Bianca?" Cheren asked hesitantly as the girl spun away from him. "What does that have to do with anything we've just been talking about?"

"There is this old nursery rhyme my mother used to sing while we were gardening. It's called the 'Banned Ballad' and it reminds me of all that Alex has just said!" Bianca dropped into her chair while shooting both guys an elated grin.

Alex blinked at her in shock for a moment before grinning back. "Can you sing it for us?"

Bianca thought it over for a second before nodding. When she opened her mouth and started singing. The tune she used seemed very light at fist, almost like a children's song, the lyrics most certainly were not from one, though.

"Ding, dong, goes the bell
we've made a great mistake.
Ding, dong, goes the bell
we did not ask but take.

Tick, tock, goes the clock
for those who time has forgotten.
Tick, tock, goes the clock
their corpses are never rotten.
Tick, tock, goes the clock
for those close to the mother.
Tick, tock, goes the clock
for those who are of other."

Cheren was thrown. He'd had no idea that Bianca could hum a tune accurately, much less sing one. Alex, meanwhile, was pondering why the 'Banned Ballad' seemed so familiar. Surly he would know if he'd heard it before? Bianca just kept singing. The song was a ballad after all, and that means it tells a tale. You couldn't tell a full story in a song that only took a minute to sing.

"Ding, dong, goes the bell
a funeral for a people.
Ding, dong, goes the bell
under church and steeple.

Slish, slosh, goes the rain
over that field of hell.
Slish, slosh, goes the rain
in that battle many fell.
Slish, slosh, goes the rain
and in the earth they were lain.
Slish, slosh, goes the rain
they were never seen again.

Ding, dong, goes the bell
to mourn all that has been lost.
Ding, dong, goes the bell.
We won, but at what cost?"

There was a leading kind of silence in the room when Bianca was done. The last line of the song was haunting, and somehow incomplete.

"There should be more." Bianca shyly admitted. "I just can't remember it right now."

Cheren smiled at her while he and Alex watched her sit back down. It was an incredibly long song already, nether of the boys were really that startled that she didn't know the whole thing. "Do you know anyone who would know the ending?" Cheren inquired.

Bianca shook her head. "No," she admitted, "my mother is away for a holiday and I never heard anyone sing it. I'm sorry."

"It's okay," Alex told her. His voice was soft and understanding. "I know I've heard it somewhere, but I just can't remember where." They shared a moment of mutual annoyance before Bianca turned away and poured them all more tea.

"We will just have to hope one of us remembers it later." Bianca said.

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In a far away city by an ancient harbor many different groups and people plotted. A father, a cruel man, and a crooked officer plotted how to catch the heiress to a vast fortune on both sides of her family. A mother, an aunt, and an honest cop plotted to help the heiress. A group thought long defeated planned to use the upper class being distracted to take over. A small Pokémon plotted to run off and search out a pale girl to return a brooch to the one who didn't have to help, but did.

Castalia plotted, but the child so involved in all of it sleep peacefully on unaware of what brewed around her. A child slept on, and slowly a poison was eradicated from her system. The clock is ticking, the egg is rocking, and a young girl is almost ready to be forged into the hero Unova so despritly needs.