A/n: nearly... What? Four months since the last update! Whoops... But this story is far from dead. In fact, on the 30th of this month (December 2013), it'll be one year since I started publishing this! Long live Soul Link! :D

This chapter took so long because:

1. Lack of inspiration for events that come after this part. I like to plan things ahead and have them connected consistently, to make sure nothing from the previous chapters will be changed.

2. I liked this chapter so much that I didn't want to let go of... Err, I mean... I liked it so much that I wanted to release an audio drama about it, together with the chapter! I wish I could do the entire thing, but it's too much work so I had to choose just one scene for now (I hope I'll have the will to do more later). I had to translate the dialogue into Japanese, then record the speech, and as I didn't find Pokemon music covers that fit for the BGM, I still had to arrange some music... It took time, but it's finally done. The links are on the end notes (because you need to read the chapter first!).

3. A wild idea appeared! Thus I started another BW fic! It's shorter, though (not "novel-sized" like this one), and will be "out of the way" soon :P. It's called "Ideal Friend" ("s/9869409"), and instead of Reshiram, it has Touko getting Zekrom (which is the complete opposite of this fic's Zekrom, by the way)!

4. Pokemon X and Y are out, and I'm playing! Not much time to do that either, but anyway...

Enough talk, now on to what you came here for! :P


Pokemon Black n' White: Soul Link

Written by Aiyumi

Disclaimer: Pocket Monsters/Pokemon, as well as any other trademark that may be referenced in this fan fiction, are properties of their respective owners. I am just a fan and I do not have any relations to said people/companies.

Chapter 10: Bedtime Stories

Touko was just sitting on the sofa, not paying any attention as her father told the legend of the Unova heroes to Makoto, who, in the other hand, seemed completely absorbed in it. The little girl said nothing, just listened with a large smile and dreamy eyes.

The story wasn't quite right, but Reshiram remembered the real facts like it was yesterday. How the dragon (which she was a part of) was befriended by the first heroes. How it learned to care about people. When it split, creating her and her two brothers. Her first battle against Zekrom, how they were immature at the time...

"Then, the twins and the two dragons lived happily ever after." Their father finished.

"... What? Wait! You said the dragon split in three. What happened to the other one?"

"Huh? So were you paying attention?" Mr. White said, sure that she was lost in thought and wasn't really listening.

"Of course I was! So, what happened to the other dragon?"

"Humm..." Mr. White scratched his head. He didn't know it well either. Very few did. But one thing was for sure: the third dragon's story wasn't a good one to be told to children. Even some adults were scared by it, mainly the residents of Lacunosa Town, who believed that the dragon lived nearby and would take people from the city at night and eat them. So, the man opted to tell the most basic of the basics. "It disappeared. No one knows where it went to."

"... Okay." She decided to change the subject. "Dad, other heroes appeared and the dragons battled for many generations, right?"

"Right."

"do you think there're some of the new heroes around today?" She asked just to see what he would say.

"Hmm, I don't know. Maybe..."

Touko involuntarily remembered the moment when she last talked to N.

"... But I thought it wouldn't happen, that the other hero wouldn't appear. Them you came and showed me the answer that I was looking for."

"B-but... I'm not... I'm not a hero. I just..."

"Right. You are not a hero. In fact, neither of you are. As for you, N, you are a failure!"

And when Touko noticed, she was shouting. "No, there aren't!"

"Touko?" Her father looked at her surprised.

"There aren't any heroes, It's just a legend, a story! In reality, things aren't so simple. I don't understand how people can think that the dragons would obey someone claiming to be a 'hero'. They're dangerous. They can... Kill pokemon... And... And people too! They can destroy everything!"

Makoto felt a pang on her chest. So that was what Touko thought of her. She tried so hard, doing everything she could to protect Touko, and that was the way she was regarded. Unlike the other heroes, Touko feared her. Seeing what Zekrom did, that kind of reaction could be expected. But the problem was that the fear didn't begin after what Zekrom did. It was there from the beginning, since the moment when she materialized from the Light Stone, even before the battle began. That hurt a lot.

"No, it isn't true! Shira isn't like that!" Corona unexpectedly came out of her poke ball, which was on a table at the room's center.

"Corona... ?" Makoto whispered, looking at the little Larvesta in surprise.

"Touko, why do you think of Shira like that? She's so nice... She saved you. She even changed form to come here and help you!" Corona turned away from Touko and looked at Makoto. "Isn't it? Shira, say something!"

Makoto didn't answer. She only put Corona on her lap and hugged her.

"Makoto, I think your sister isn't feeling very well," Akemi, who heard the shouting through the door, said. "It's getting late. How about you go to sleep? Dad and I'll talk to her and try to calm her down, okay?"

"Hm." Makoto simply nodded. "Good night."

"Good night." Both parents answered in unison.

Makoto put Corona on the ground and stood up from the sofa. She took the poke ball from the table and would call the Larvesta back, but the baby pokemon jumped at her and knocked the ball from her hand.

"Why didn't you say anything? Why don't you tell them! ?"

The little girl wordlessly retrieved the ball, gently scooped the small pokemon in her arms and headed to the bedroom, leaving Touko alone with her parents.

"Touko, why did you say that?" Akemi approached her from the left.

"What happened?" Robert came from the right and put a hand on her shoulder.

"... During my journey..." Touko said, trying to hold her tears. "I met a person... He loved pokemon like no one else. And one day, his own pokemon... His dragon pokemon... Attacked and, and..." She couldn't finish what she was saying. The tears came uncontrollably once more.

Robert hugged her while Akemi stroked her hair. They stayed a long time like that, unable to do anything else, helplessly watching their daughter cry.


"Shira, why? Why didn't you tell them?" Corona repeated when they got to the bedroom.

"They wouldn't believe me."

Corona remembered that the other pokemon didn't believe when she tried to tell them that Makoto was Reshiram, and made a sad face.

"And even if they believed," Makoto continued. "Touko could get afraid of me again, and I don't want that."

The Larvesta thought in silence, changing the subject after a moment. "And the story? It really happened?"

"Not exactly like that, but yes."

"And the other dragon? You asked like you didn't knew, but you know what happened to him, right?"

"Yes."

"Oh!" The Larvesta's eyes lit up in interest. "So what happened?"

"Corona, let's leave this subject for another day." She tried to avoid it, as the third dragon's story wasn't a good one to be told to children...

"But I want to know!"

"it's getting late. Time to go back to your poke ball and sleep."

"... I promise to go back to the poke ball if you tell me."

"Alright." Makoto sighed, deciding to tell the basics and leave out the heavier parts. "After we split, he disappeared. No one saw him for a long time. When Mew... My friend... Found him, he was dormant, so no one did anything."

"Dormant?"

"In a very deep sleep." She rephrased.

"Ah. Did he awake?"

"He did. He seemed very enraged, lost and confused. He attacked everything that he saw. I tried to talk to him, but he didn't understand words. I didn't want to do it, but the only way to stop him was to fight. I had to battle, and I still needed my friend's help to restrain him. Later, he caused more problems, and after being considered too dangerous to everyone, he was imprisoned. It must have been horrible to wake up in the middle of nowhere without understanding anything, then being taken out by force and trapped."

"It's sad..."

"It is. I couldn't stand that. Whenever I was allowed to see him, I tried talking to him even though he didn't understand words. He was so lonely there. He couldn't go outside to see different places and feel different things. The time passed. I... 'Changed forms' and visited many places. When I could see him, I told him about the things that I saw, what I learned and what I did."

"Do you think he understood?"

Makoto made a brief pause and a hint of pain showed in her eyes. "I really hope he did, but I... don't know."

"He doesn't know how to speak yet?"

"It's been long since I saw him, but last time we met, he still didn't."

The Larvesta chuckled. "He's like a baby then! What's his name? You didn't say it."

"He's called Kyurem."

"... Kyu... !"

"Ahahaha!" Makoto laughed.

"Will you take me to meet him someday?"

"... Maybe..."

"Yeah! And I can help you teach him to speak!"

"Thank you." Makoto smiled to the little pokemon, then her expression became serious all of a sudden. "Right. I told you the story. Now, it's time for you to get inside and sleep."

"Okay! Good night, Shira!"

"Good night."

Satisfied, Corona went inside the poke ball on her own.

Makoto sighed and laid on the bed. Minutes passed, and she was unable to sleep. What Touko said still disturbed her. She decided to focus on something else and her thoughts drifted away. That conversation about Kyurem brought back memories.

X:X:X:X:X

Reshiram was in one of her human lives, when suddenly Mew summoned her to Arceus' Realm.

"Mew, did something happen?"

"It's about Kyurem, the third dragon."

"Did he awaken?"

"Yes! And he went berserk! He's freezing and destroying everything!"

"What?"

"He already froze the entire forest near where he awoke! If we don't stop him, he'll destroy the cities and the other forests nearby! Since he, you and Zekrom were once one being, I think he might calm down if he recognizes you two. I talked to Zekrom, but he refused to help! Now I can only count on you, Reshiram!"

"... Right, I'll do what I can. Take me to him!"

Mew teleported the Light Stone to an area near where Kyurem was, and Reshiram materialized from it.

"He's heading in that direction." Mew pointed.

"Got it!" Reshiram flew to the indicated direction until she saw the ice dragon roaring and attacking uncontrollably. "Kyurem!"

He continued his rampage and didn't even look at her.

"Kyurem!" She called again, a bit louder.

He finally turned in her direction, but he didn't stop to see who it was and threw a Ice Beam at her.

"Ah!" Despite being taken by surprise, Reshiram was able to dodge the attack. She had almost no time to recover as Kyurem came at a high speed, ready to strike a Slash. Narrowly avoiding it, she was face to face with Kyurem and could finally take a closer look at him. She flinched. The air was very cold, almost freezing around him (even to her that was a fire type legendary), and he had an insane look in his eyes, showing only thirst for destruction. "C-can't you recognize me? Aaah!" She didn't see him quickly use Ancient Power, and this time she was hit and thrown some distance back. Before she could do anything, he sent Ice Beams in her direction again. She dodged and continued speaking. "Remember the twin heroes? When you, Zekrom and I were one, they stayed with us for a long time. When they decided to follow different paths, one choosing truth and the other choosing ideals, we still wanted to support both, so we split. Remember that?"

He stopped attacking for a second. Reshiram thought it was a sign that he remembered or at least that he was thinking about it, but then he roared ferociously, releasing a Dragon Pulse towards her. The attack was violent and fast. Reshiram wouldn't have time to dodge it.

"Watch out!" Mew came flying and used Protect.

"Thank you, Mew."

"You owe me one." The pink pokemon smirked.

Faster than expected, Kyurem shot an Ice Beam towards Mew. Reshiram barely had time to counter it with Flamethrower and melt the ice.

"It seems we're even already..." The white dragon remarked. She turned to Kyurem once more. "Kyurem, please stop! Why are you attacking us? We aren't your enemies!"

He roared loudly again and used Dragon Breath. This time, Reshiram could dodge without problems, however he followed it with Glaciate, freezing everything around them and burying them in ice. It took a few minutes for them to recover and be able to break free.

"Mew! Are you alright?"

"... Y-yes, I think." Mew appeared from under some ice pillars. "... Where's Kyurem?"

"Huh?" Reshiram turned and looked around frantically. The ice dragon was nowhere to be seen. "Oh no! Kyurem! Kyurem, where are you! ?"

Both flew towards the nearest town, the residential area that later would become Lacunosa Town. Unfortunately, they were late. Kyurem had already destroyed half of the place. He threw Ice Beams, Dragon Breaths and Dragon Pulses at anything that moved. Houses were destroyed, and nearly everything was covered in ice. Frozen and lifeless human, animal and pokemon bodies littered the floor.

"Ah!" Reshiram gasped in horror. "Kyurem! Stop, please!"

He didn't listen.

"I think he doesn't understand what you're saying. Let me try something." Mew tried to communicate through telepathy, as that could pass the messages from mind to mind directly without the need for words.

While Mew was trying to get to the ice dragon's mind, for a brief moment, Reshiram saw when something different than the desire for destruction appeared in his eyes. There was confusion, sorrow, despair, fear, everything combined. But Kyurem didn't give them time to think. A fraction of a second later, the thirst for destruction was back as if nothing had happened, and he started using all the attacks in his arsenal. Ice Beam, Dragon Breath, Ancient Power, Dragon Pulse...

"We have to fight!" Mew shouted, unable to keep the telepathy going.

"What? But..."

"We need to stop him! Reshiram, use Dragon Breath!" Mew pulled a pokemon trainer.

"No, I don't want to hurt him! If we attack him, it will be harder to make him trust us!"

"This town is nearly gone! If he continues like this, he'll destroy more places, and take more lives! We need to stop him no matter what!"

"... R-right..." Reshiram hesitated. "I'm sorry, Kyurem!" At last, she attacked.

Being hit by the super effective move, the ice dragon roared in pain.

"Once more! We need him unconscious!" Mew commanded.

"... Uh..." Reshiram reluctantly prepared another Dragon Breath while dodging the attacks coming her way.

After being hit again, Kyurem was considerably weakened, but he wouldn't stop. He desperately performed more random attacks, which were much slower and weaker than before, but then he used Imprison, making Reshiram unable to use moves that he also knew. That included Dragon Breath and Ancient Power, the only two attacks she had that were super effective against him.

"Ah! He blocked my use of Dragon Breath! It doesn't come out!"

And to make things worse, Kyurem followed it with Endeavor, causing Reshiram to feel very drained, similar to the state he was in after enduring the super effective attacks.

"Kyurem... Please stop..." Reshiram said weakly.

Instead of stopping, he used his remaining strength to perform Outrage. Reshiram couldn't move in time to dodge. She was hit super effectively and fainted.


"Ah!" She woke up with a start. Looking around, she recognized the place as being Arceus' Realm.

"Reshiram, are you alright?" Mew came through a door.

"... Huh... What happened?"

"I used Protect and managed to avoid Kyurem's attack, them I put him to sleep with hypnosis."

Reshiram was relieved to know that Mew hadn't hurt her little brother more. "Where is he now?"

"I was able to revert his body to a stone and brought his soul here to Arceus' Realm."

"Can I see him?"

Mew made a portal and teleported with Reshiram, appearing in a room where Kyurem's shapeless soul floated.

"Hi Kyurem." Reshiram approached.

He moved slowly, waking up.

She continued. "I'm sorry for having attacked you earlier. Are you okay?"

Silence. Suddenly, Kyurem roared, assumed his dragon form and started shooting Ice Beams in all directions.

"Ah!" Reshiram's soul jumped in surprise, barely avoiding an Ice Beam. "Kyurem, calm down! We won't hurt you!"

He didn't listen and continued his rampage. Mew had to use her second in command powers to forcibly revert him back to a shapeless soul. "Sorry, but you'll have to sleep a bit more, okay?" She used hypnosis again, and Kyurem was out. "Ah." Mew sighed. "I'm only imagining the detailed report I'll have to make. Arceus won't like this..."

Mew was right. After reading the reports of what had happened, assessing all the damage and making his own conclusions, Arceus was very displeased. He placed Kyurem in hibernation like he did with the other two dragons, but there in his realm instead of a stone.


When Reshiram came back after her human life had ended, the first thing she saw was a group of souls running desperately. She went one floor up and was shocked by what she found. Part of the ground and the walls was covered in ice.

"Reshiram, you're here!"

"Mew, what happened?"

"Kyurem awakened from his hibernation, And rampaged through the place!"

"What! ?"

"I managed to use Barrier and trap him, but if he keeps attacking like he is now, I don't know if the barriers can hold much longer!"

"I need to do something!" The white dragon's soul zipped past Mew and went searching for Kyurem.

"Ah! Reshiram!"

Only after she was far away, it occurred to her that she could have asked Mew to teleport her directly, but she wouldn't turn back. She followed the paths which had the most ice, hopping that it would lead her to Kyurem. She was right. Getting to a room where the ice trails ended, she found him. Surrounded by glass-like transparent barriers, he was in his dragon form, roaring and trashing, desperately trying to break free by violently tackling the barriers. After various unsuccessful tries, he began using Dragon Pulse, and as he was too close to the wall, he ended up hurting himself with his own attacks.

"Kyurem! Stop doing that! This way you're only hurting yourself!" Reshiram shouted over the noise of his attacks.

He paid her no mind, still roaring in rage and pain as he got hurt by his own Dragon Pulses.

"Calm down!" She insisted. "Listen! We didn't want to keep you imprisoned! We really didn't! But we can't free you if you keep destroying things like that! If you stay quiet, if you behave, we'll release you, we promise!"

Thirst for destruction and pain alternated in his face as he continued to furiously attack the barriers.

"That's no use, Reshiram!" Mew came from behind. "I even tried telepathy again, but it didn't work, he furiously forced me out and didn't listen! He doesn't understand words, nor the mental messages, nor anything! He only has that desire for destruction and nothing else!"

"He doesn't understand words..." Reshiram muttered to herself. "Wait..." She remembered about a musician she befriended in her latest human life. He played the piano, cheering up people and pokemon alike.

"Music is really wonderful, don't you think?" He had said. "It has an incredible power over both humans and pokemon, and it's 'universal', having the same effect anywhere you go. It can transmit emotions, get messages across even to people from far away who don't speak the same language as us. It's truly amazing, don't you think so too?"

She did. She was very impressed by the results that he got with his music, and insisted that he taught her to play the piano. She learned a few things, and despite not playing so well like him, she was able to cheer up a lot of pokemon and humans.

"Yes, that's it! Mew, I need a piano!"

"... Huh? What are you talking about! ?"

"I need to play the piano. You can get one for me, can't you! ?"

"... I can, but we're in an emergency! How can you think about playing music in a time like this!"

"It's because I had an idea! Mew, do it quickly, please!"

Mew reluctantly used her powers, "materializing" a piano in the corridor next to the room where Kyurem was. Reshiram assumed the human form from her previous life and played a calm, soothing song. At first, it was difficult to be heard over the roars and attacks, but Reshiram didn't give up. Some time passed, and surprisingly, Kyurem seemed to notice the sound, get curious and stop what he was doing in order to hear it. He turned in the direction that the music was coming from and leaned against the barrier. He had his eyes closed, and the calmest expression that he had ever made.

Mew had her eyes and mouth wide open while observing that rare occurrence. She didn't move, seemingly fearing a violent reaction from the dragon if he noticed any movement.

Some time later, Reshiram finally ended the music and everything was silent. Kyurem opened his eyes, but before he could do anything, Mew used Hypnosis and put him to sleep.

"... I... I did it! Mew, I did it..." Reshiram spoke, the heart of her current human form leaping in joy.

"Reshiram, that was... Really something..." Mew said, still surprised.

"Hm." Reshiram in human form nodded and smiled. "Thanks."


Unfortunately, things didn't go so well for them. After seeing the various frozen areas of his palace, and considering all previous problems, Arceus decided that Kyurem was a threat and that his soul should be destroyed. When Reshiram heard about the decision, she went desperately looking for him. Unable to get a hold of Mew, she had to search on her own. Since she didn't know where to go, first she would get to Kyurem. Thankfully, he was in the same room as before, floating as a shapeless soul, in a deep slumber, surrounded by Mew's barriers. But just a short distance away stood Arceus, ready to put the ice dragon out of his misery. Reshiram usually didn't speak to him, much less raise her voice, but she couldn't contain herself that time. "Lord Arceus, no! Please don't!" She put herself between her brother and the god pokemon. "He doesn't know what he's doing. He is like a baby with super powers! If only we could make him learn to control himself..."

"Reshiram," Arceus interrupted. "When the split occurred, most rational and emotional functions were transferred to you and Zekrom. Kyurem is an empty being. He has only instincts. He does not understand words, and is likely incapable of having feelings other than the desire for destruction. A being like this will only bring problems to the physical world."

"How can you be so sure? When we were one dragon, we experienced many feelings with the help of the heroes. There must be something left in him... No, there is, I am sure of that."

"Even if there is, it is so small that it will not be of any use. Kyurem will not be able to access it, much less make sense of it."

"Please, give him a chance..."

"Reshiram, do you have any idea of how much time it is taking to rebuild the places that he destroyed, or how many lives were unexpectedly cut short?"

She didn't have an answer to that.

Arceus continued. "It already had an impact on the culture of many people. The consequences will be felt for generations. What do you think will happen if I release him now?"

The answer was obvious, and Reshiram didn't have a counter argument.

Arceus kept speaking. "He will cause even more destruction. There will be no time to recover, and maybe even no resources as well. He will disturb the balance, and the beings will not be able to progress. I cannot allow that."

Reshiram was speechless. She desperately searched for something that she could say to defend Kyurem, but found nothing.

"Arceus." Mew came flying through the door.

Reshiram flinched, remembering Mew's words from before. "That's no use, Reshiram! ... He only has that desire for destruction and nothing else!" It was clear that Mew was against giving the ice dragon another chance.

"Regarding Kyurem, there was something that I forgot to mention." Mew waited for the god pokemon to turn in her direction. "When I tried to connect to his mind and communicate through telepathy, he didn't respond in the way I expected, however he displayed some interesting reactions. Also, just some time ago, when he was rampaging, Reshiram played a song to him and he surprisingly calmed down. I got interested to know which other emotions he can display. I understand that he's too dangerous to be let loose, and if you don't allow him into the physical world, perhaps you could leave him here to be kept under observation..."

Mew and Reshiram held their breaths while Arceus thought in silence. They gasped in horror when there was a sudden movement from the god pokemon, and they imagined the worst. Daring to look, they sighed in relief seeing Kyurem's soul still there.

"Provided that he does not cause more problems, it may be acceptable." It was Arceus' answer. "I increased the barriers' levels to 3. Most creatures can barely scratch a level 1 barrier, so level 3 will probably suffice."

"... Th-thank you," Reshiram managed to say, still recovering from the shock.

"Mew, you will monitor him, and make sure that everything is under control."

"Understood," Mew answered.

"Then, I will take my leave."

Arceus left, and everything was silent.

"Mew... ... Why?"

"At first, I agreed with Arceus. I thought that Kyurem could only feel desire for destruction. But after seeing how you acted towards him, and when you played that music to him... His demeanor changed completely. If he only had desire for destruction in him, he probably wouldn't react that way... Maybe we can make some progress if we keep trying. I got interested to know how it goes."

"Thank you."

"No problem. By the way, it's almost time for you to go back to hibernation."

"Ah yes, I almost forgot about that! ... Mew, can I ask you a favor?"

"What is it?"

"I know that the sense of time is a bit different here, but can you call me here at least once a month? Even if I I'm hibernating, or living as a human or as a pokemon... I want to see Kyurem whenever possible."

"Okay. Once a month elapses in the physical world, I'll summon you here."


So was done. Reshiram frequently visited Kyurem, talked to him and played the piano to him.

"There are lots of pokemon species," she said during one of her visits. "Many humans give nicknames to the pokemon they befriend, to identify them from others of the same species. But some pokemon, like you and me, are the only ones of our species. Yours is Kyurem. Mine is Reshiram. Kyu-rem. Re-shi-ram." She repeated slowly. "Can you say it?"

Silence.

Reshiram sighed. There wasn't much progress since she started visiting. Kyurem didn't show many other emotions besides the usual desire for destruction. He was usually in dragon form, and the only moments he was calm was during sleep or a few times when he listened to music. Whenever Reshiram or Mew came close, he had that insane look in his eyes and furiously threw attacks in their direction, which were thankfully blocked by the barriers. Reshiram's only choices were to play the piano to try calming him down (which didn't always work), or to wait until he gave up attacking the walls, tired of expending his strength, and only then she could start talking. However, he never seemed to pay attention to what she said, much less understand it. She was trying to get him to speak for a few visits, but nothing came from him besides ferocious roars.

"How I wish I could hear your voice..." She sighed once more and ended the visit.


She came to visit again just after the following crisis had ended, and found him asleep. She was a bit relieved to see that he was quiet, and at the same time, a bit disappointed because she couldn't talk to him. "Okay, just dropping by to say 'hi'." She spoke in a low voice. "I don't want to disturb you, so I'll leave. Next time I come, maybe you can tell me what you were dreaming about?" She chuckled at the absurdity of what she had said. He still hadn't uttered a word, so it was totally impossible.

"Ha, ha, ha. So the rumors were true. How pathetic."

Reshiram turned in the direction of the voice. "... Zekrom?"

"I heard other souls saying that you came here frequently and spent hours and hours babbling nonsense. I decided to take a look around just before going back to hibernation, and look what we have here... Really pathetic."

Reshiram knew that he wasn't "taking a look around". He wasn't the type to just walk calmly and appreciate the scenery. He was specifically looking for her, just to mock her. "I'm trying to help him, and I would do the same for you."

"Hmph. I don't need your pity, and neither does him... Or should I say 'it'?"

"Zekrom, don't talk about him like that! He's one of us!"

"One of us? Don't compare me to this!" Zekrom's shapeless soul bobbed in Kyurem's direction. "This... Thing... Is an empty shell, an abomination made from the worthless remains of the split. No matter how much you insist, it won't ever understand a word of what you say. It has no feelings, is incapable of thinking and has no intelligence whatsoever. You are just wasting your time. You should be worried about more important matters, like the strategies for our next battle."

"Zekrom, stop! He's..." Reshiram said in a desperate tone, noticing that Kyurem had opened his eyes and didn't seem the least bit happy.

The ice type glowered at the black dragon's soul. Even if he didn't understand words, Reshiram was sure that he was able to notice that Zekrom was saying bad things about him.

But Zekrom ignored both of them and continued speaking. "It is just an insignificant, hopeless, worthless pathetic excuse for a being!"

"Zekrom, please..."

No one could say anything else as a sudden burst of cold air came from Kyurem, solidified and was shot forward, completely shattering the level 3 barriers. Kyurem was finally free, the only "obstacles" in that room being Zekrom and Reshiram. He had a maniacal look in his eyes, and his freezing aura was stronger than ever. He shot Ice Beams at them, forcing them to assume their dragon forms to counterattack. Reshiram used Flamethrower to try melting the ice, but Kyurem's attack was much stronger than she had expected. Parts of the ice melted, but the fire wasn't enough to stop it. Reshiram was hit squarely, the force of the attack throwing her into a wall.

Zekrom used Thunder, but it was dodged. Then, he used Thunderbolt. It hit, but it was brushed off like it was nothing. "Grrr." He grunted, remembering that Kyurem was resistant to his electric type attacks. It would be easier if he could use a dragon type move, but he had none as he still hadn't learned Dragon Claw at the time, and was probably regretting to have skipped learning Dragon Breath. Instead, he opted to use Thunder Wave. Even if Kyurem didn't get fully paralyzed, that would make it difficult for him to move and dodge their attacks.

Reshiram, who still didn't know Dragon Pulse, used Dragon Breath, the strongest move she had that was super effective against him. Kyurem was stunned and thrown some distance back.

"Kyurem, please stop! I really don't want to hurt you. please!"

"What are you doing! Attack, quickly!" Zekrom shouted. "Grrr! I don't have time for this!" He hastily used Fusion Bolt.

It didn't cause too much damage, mostly serving to get Kyurem even more angered. He fought the paralysis with all his might and shot a violent Dragon Pulse, hitting both Zekrom and Reshiram at the same time.

The attack was strong. They probably wouldn't still be conscious if hit by another one of those.

"Reshiram, you need to use Fusion Flare."

"B-but..." She was still reluctant to attack. But Kyurem had to be knocked down, or at least fully immobilized, so that he was quiet while she tried to talk to him. "Alright, I'll do it."

The Fusion Flare's power was doubled because Zekrom had used Fusion Bolt previously. Kyurem was hit by the attack, gave a screeching roar and fainted.

"Thank you for the help, Zekrom."

However, cooperation between the two dragons' didn't last long.

"Hmph. I told you." The sentence could have been friendly, but Zekrom's tone wasn't. "Stop wasting your time. I don't have time to lose, so if you excuse me," he continued with the mocking tone. "I will go to my hibernation."

Zekrom reverted back to a shapeless soul and left.

Not bothered, Reshiram sat down next to Kyurem's fallen figure. His freezing aura was already calmer. It was the first time that Reshiram got so close to him outside of battle. She wanted to touch him. For a moment she was afraid that he would react violently, but at last she decided to try. Thankfully (or not), he didn't move. She adjusted him to a more comfortable position on the ground, since he didn't fall in a very good one when he fainted. She was about to move away, but he unexpectedly snuggled closer to her, and that made her "smile".


Mew arrived and surrounded Kyurem by barriers again.

"He got very strong." Reshiram commented. "It looked as if he got much stronger just by attacking the barriers..."

"It wasn't just that." Mew spoke. "I was observing him through the screens. For some time, I noticed that his body temperature gradually became much lower than usual, but I thought it was normal... I did some more analysis of what happened just now... And it turns out that he was awake the whole time! He was pretending to be asleep, while concentrating cold air in his body to unleash everything onto the barriers!"

"Really?" Reshiram, still in dragon form, said with hope in her eyes. "Maybe... Could it mean that he's developing some form of intelligence?"

"No." Arceus entered the room. "It was pure instinct. Survival instinct, just that. Kyurem 'considers' all moving things as a threat. He must have detected that no one tends to approach when he is asleep."

"Huh?" Reshiram was confused. "Isn't there logic behind that? For me, it sounds like reasoning, not instinct..."

"It is the logic we use for understanding actions driven by instinct. It is our reasoning, not his. He is not thinking, just acting on impulse."

"But..." Reshiram wasn't fully convinced.

Arceus continued. "Do not raise false hopes, Reshiram. By what was transferred to him in the split, I know what he should and should not be capable of. I analyzed Mew's reports, and I am afraid to say that Kyurem is nearly reaching his limits. You can continue with your observations. You may still learn something from them, although there will not be much more progress to be made. In the end, you will just come to the same conclusion as me."

Reshiram wanted to say something, but nothing came out. No matter what she said, Arceus would counter it with very discouraging words.

The god pokemon strengthened the barriers again. "I increased the barriers' levels to 8. Until now, only one creature was able to destroy a level 8 barrier. If Kyurem manages to do that... Then it means that his soul really must be destroyed."


Reshiram kept visiting, even interrupting her hibernation, and also during her next human life. Unfortunately, like Arceus said, there wasn't much progress. Kyurem's behavior didn't change much. Reshiram really didn't like seeing him imprisoned, but by her own analogy, if he was like a baby with super powers, then the barriers acted as the crib. She had hopes that they could make him learn to control himself, then convince Arceus that he could be freed, but she was getting worried. Much time had passed. It had been too long since she was watching him - a crisis requiring her to be in her dragon form, an entire life as a human, then the beginning of her current human life -. Around two generations, nearly a century in the physical word, coming to visit him each month. It meant that she went there to talk to him for approximately 1200 times. There wasn't an exact way to define the flow of time in Arceus' Realm, but if she considered each visit as one day, it would be equivalent to... Around three years! Human babies usually started learning to speak at one year of age, and pokemon babies needed even less. Much time had passed for too little progress. could what Arceus said be true? Was Kyurem really incapable of thinking and having feelings? Was she just raising false hopes?

"I know that he can't be released yet," Reshiram said to Mew. "But that may be part of the problem. His views are too limited here. He can't see new things, and can't learn new things if he keeps trapped here! I already told him about what I experienced, but he didn't show signs of understanding me, and besides, he needs to see things for himself! If there was a way to make him experience the outside world without actually going there..."

"Hmm..." Mew closed her eyes thoughtfully. "Well, I think I know of a way. We could try the Dream World, and make him dream about the outside things."

"Really?"

"Yes. But we must be careful. The Dream World has the power to materialize wishes, and if his desire for destruction is too strong, it may affect the physical world as well. I can try to suppress his power so he can't assume the dragon form in the dream, but I don't know for how long. He's becoming stronger, you know."

"Hm." Reshiram's soul bobbed into a "nod". "Even if it's risky, I want to try!"

"Alright. I'll do what I can. If something happens, I'll pull both of you out as soon as possible."

So they did. Mew called a Musharna to release Dream Mist, and to the Dream World they went.

Reshiram and Kyurem appeared as shapeless souls, in a big and lush forest.

"Look, Kyurem. That's a tree." Reshiram's soul signaled in the direction of a tree. "That other one is smaller, but it's also a tree." She "pointed" to a tree that was full of berries. "Those small things there are berries. They're edible..." She forgot to tone down her language. "Uh... What I meant to say is that we can eat them." She quickly floated over to the berries and "plucked" a few, then came back. Although souls didn't need to eat, she absorbed the berry to show how it was done. "It tastes really good. Here, these are for you."

He didn't show any interest. When Reshiram insisted, he "refused", bumping into her and dropping the berries she was holding.

"Ah! Wait!" While she was trying to retrieve the scattered berries, he took the opportunity to float away. She couldn't leave him unattended, so she gave up on the berries and followed.

He moved fast, and it was a bit hard for her to catch up. They flew around for a bit, them he began furiously trashing and ramming into everything, seemingly flustered because the forest never ended and there wasn't any "way out". He roared and contorted, probably trying to assume his dragon form.

"Kyurem, calm down!" Somehow Reshiram managed to hold him. "What's the problem? Tell me." There was no answer, not even a sign that he was trying to speak. He still resisted, trying to break free. Reshiram was having trouble to keep holding him in place. He was strong, and she feared that he would be able to assume his dragon form if he kept trying. She needed to distract him and make him forget about the dragon form for a while. That was when she spotted a few trees of Leppa Berries in the distance. "Hey, lots of Leppa Berries there. Let's take a look!" With some difficulty, she dragged him over to the small trees. "Leppa Berries were our favorites. The twin heroes always gave us these. Remember?"

No reaction. Reshiram did what she could to get some berries while still holding him. She had to force him to eat a Leppa Berry, and there was finally a reaction. He seemed to like the taste, because he surprisingly ate another one on his own, and another, and another... Reshiram even risked letting go of him, and he stayed there quietly, calmly absorbing the berries. It was some progress, and she wanted to smile. But then, he finished a berry, and his icy aura started getting colder...

"Kyurem? Is everything okay? ... Aaah!"

The icy aura exploded outwards and sent Reshiram's soul flying. When she recovered and was able to take a look around, she saw it. There stood Kyurem in dragon form, with that insane look in his eyes.

"... K-Kyurem?"

He was looking directly at her. His eyes showed sorrow, loneliness, and hate. Hate towards her, hate towards the world that rejected him. And of course, the thirst for destruction, the desire to end it all.

"Kyurem, no! No..." Reshiram was utterly shocked. She had done so much for him, yet she felt that he really hated her. She needed to do something to stop him, but she couldn't move, paralyzed in shock.

Mew appeared. "My power wasn't enough. He's way stronger than me! I'll pull you ou-aaaaaaaah!"

Mew couldn't finish her sentence. Kyurem gave a mighty roar then used Glaciate, and soon the whole forest was covered in ice.

Mew managed to pull them out from the dream and hurried to her monitors. "Thankfully the physical word was unaffected," she said, back to where Reshiram was. "Reshiram? Are you okay?"

"... Kyurem, why? Why do you hate me so much?" Were her last words before she fell unconscious.


After that incident, Reshiram's human life was a disaster. Her family and friends noticed that she wasn't well and constantly saw her crying, but she couldn't talk to anyone about the problem. What would she say? That she was actually a legendary pokemon trying to help another legendary pokemon? They would think that she was crazy. However, keeping quiet didn't work either. Her boyfriend lost his trust in her, suspecting that she was hiding something completely unrelated from him, and left her. Her friends didn't know what to do to cheer her up, some even distancing themselves from her, not brave enough to deal with the situation.

Reshiram didn't know what to do either. She couldn't keep mixing her human life with the legendary dragon affair's like that, but she was growing more and more worried. Little by little, Kyurem was getting stronger. What if he really became strong enough to break the level 8 barrier? He would be nearly unstoppable, the only solution would be to have his soul destroyed, and Reshiram didn't want that. She had to find a way to properly communicate with Kyurem and teach him how he should and how he shouldn't use his power, so that Arceus would be convinced to not destroy his soul, and she had to do it quickly. But to her shock, her plans wouldn't go so well as she discovered on the next visit.

"Reshiram." Mew looked at her sternly. "This is going too far. This whole deal is being bad for you. And worse, it's affecting people around you too. It's interfering with lives of people who shouldn't be involved. This can't keep happening. So..." She paused. "I'm sorry to have to say this... But I can't let you see Kyurem anymore."

"... Wh-what?" She stammered in shock.

"It's exactly as you heard. If you see him and he doesn't respond as you expect, you'll most likely get worse, and that'll keep affecting people around you. I'm trying to cover for you in the reports, but if Arceus discovers what's happening, he may forbid you to keep reincarnating as human."

Reshiram was speechless for a moment.

"... ... If that happens... Do you think I can stay with Kyurem?"

Mew spoke after some thought, probably having an idea of what Reshiram intended to say. "Maybe, but you must remember that your mission is to support the heroes of Unova. What do you think is more important? Learning ways to improve your relationship with the next heroes, or helping Kyurem?"

Reshiram still wanted to watch her little brother's progress, but she also wanted to live as human when possible, so that she could understand more about humans to support the future heroes better. The heroes were important to Unova's progress, as their actions would impact the lives of many. On the other hand, Kyurem was just one being, who wasn't allowed to leave Arceus' Realm in the first place. If released in the state he was now, he probably could destroy the whole region (an equally big impact), so helping him could also mean preventing disaster. But his progress was much slower compared to the improvements in Unova after the heroes did their part. So, at last, Reshiram decided. "Yes... you're right..." She said, although she didn't like to admit it. "I understand. I'll stay with the humans."

"That's a wise choice." Mew nodded approvingly.

Reshiram spoke again after a bit of silence. "Mew, about Kyurem... You're talking to him, right?"

"Not as much as you, but yes. I also tried telepathy again a few times, to see if I could make him understand a few things, and also to try figuring out what he's feeling... But until now, he never let me through." She saw Reshiram's soul bobbing in understanding, then added. "Don't worry, I'll take good care of him. I'll let you know when there's progress, and if he behaves well enough... Maybe I can let you see him again sometime."

"Okay." The possibility alone was enough to get her hopes up. "But as I don't know when I can meet him again, I need to at least say goodbye. Please, could you let me play the piano to him, just this once?"

"... Alright." Mew conceded after a bit of hesitation.

"Thank you."

Mew made a portal and they were teleported through it. Like always, she "materialized" a piano in the corridor near Kyurem's room, then Reshiram assumed the appearance from her human life and played a song.

"Kyurem, I have to leave, because of some important things I need to do." Reshiram spoke while she played. "I know that you hate me, but you're my little brother, and you have a special place in my heart. Despite all the discouraging things that everyone says, I believe that you have much potential. Lord Arceus said that you're almost reaching your limits, but I don't agree. I believe that You can do much more. I won't be here to watch, but I want you to surpass the limits. I'm sure that you can do it. I don't know when I'll be able to see you again, but you won't be alone. Mew will be taking care of you, and I'll always remember you. When I come back, I hope you'll be speaking or at least starting to speak, so we can talk and maybe laugh together... Until then, I want you to behave, okay? Well... That was it. I have to go now."

Reshiram ended the song and took a peek inside the room. She hoped the music was able to get her message across to him. She wished he would do something to express that he wanted her to stay more, maybe giving her a different look, or even making some sound trying to speak... But it was too much wishful thinking. He didn't show any reaction whatsoever. She knew she shouldn't raise her expectations like that, but she felt disappointed and couldn't prevent the tears from escaping. "... Goodbye, Kyurem," She said, then turned away and left, tears still running down the cheeks of her current human form.


And that was the last time they met. Reshiram's human life ended, then she went back to hibernation, which was plagued with nightmares about Arceus' voice saying that her little brother's soul would be destroyed, or hearing melancholic and painful roars from Kyurem. Reshiram attributed that to her worry, hoping that nothing bad had happened and that Mew would wake her up at some point bringing news about Kyurem, but it didn't happen. She only woke up from her hibernation during the next crisis. It didn't take long for her to see herself in the current Hero of Truth. Touko really wished to help N, get close to him and show him new things. It was very similar as to how Reshiram wanted to help Kyurem. But things didn't go so well. The conflict between truth and ideals was solved, but with not so good results. N was killed, and Reshiram was unable to form a bond with Touko. She returned to Arceus' Realm, and Mew still didn't let her see Kyurem nor tell her any small bit of news. She felt a little hurt because of that, but Mew had her reasons. Reshiram still wished Kyurem would surpass the limits, but she feared that he would do it in a negative way, and she really felt bad when Kyurem didn't fulfill her expectations. She knew that her reactions could affect people around her, so trusting Mew was all that she could do.

X:X:X:X:X

"In reality, things aren't so simple." Touko's words haunted her. "I don't understand how people can think that the dragons would obey someone claiming to be a 'hero'. They're dangerous. They can... Kill pokemon... And... And people too! They can destroy everything!"

It wasn't something that just happened recently. Zekrom had almost always been violent. He didn't seem to be much willing to work with his heroes, nor to respect Reshiram's. He went as far as to try to kill Touko. He ended up killing N instead, and didn't show any regret for that. The other dragon, Kyurem, couldn't have a hero assigned to him. He was also violent, and completely unaware of the responsibility should a hero be chosen to work alongside him. Suddenly, Makoto's heart tightened with the realization. Among the three, she was the only one that was different... Which meant that Touko was probably right. She couldn't contain it anymore and cried, until her eyes closed by themselves and she finally fell asleep.


A/n: poor Reshiram... Again. Always being misunderstood by the ones she tries to help...

Oh Kyurem... I don't know how I came to like him so much. I only know it started when I read the fic "ClicheStorm" by Ysavvryl (s/7168677) (I still hadn't played the game by that time), then increased even more while writing this. Also I find it interesting how he was based on the concepts of the absence of yin and yang, nothingness and stuff. And after playing XY, revising this chapter made me want to put Kyurem in Pokemon Amie o_O (just a bit more before Bank is released XD).

Fusion Bolt and Fusion Flare. Reshiram and Zekrom working together! More or less... :P

Moves:

* Mew learns Barrier at level 40 and Protect via TM.

* Reshiram learns Flamethrower at level 22 or via TM, Dragon Breath at level 29, and Fusion Flare at level 50.

* Zekrom learns Thunder Wave via TM, Dragon Breath at level 29, and Fusion Bolt at level 50.

* Kyurem learns Imprison at level 8 or 64, Ancient Power at level 15, Ice Beam at level 22 or via TM, Dragon Breath at level 29, Slash at level 36, Glaciate at level 50, Dragon Pulse at level 57, Endeavor at level 71, and Outrage at level 85. Just one chapter and I made him use almost all of his level up moves :P.

And last but not least...

=== Audio drama time ===

I made a Japanese audio drama adaptation of the part where Reshiram first plays the piano to Kyurem. I created a page to house these audio dramas, and that's where you can find it:

aiyumi dot warpstar dot net / en / pokemon / sl / drama

It's called "First Song", and is under the "Chapter 10" section.

The piano music is my arrangement of the Verdanturf Town theme, and there's also my arrange of the music from N's Castle bridge. If you aren't interested in the audio drama and only want the music, go here:

aiyumi dot warpstar dot net / en / pokemon / music

To anyone else interested in the audio drama thing (I hope there's someone... Probably there'd be more listeners if the dramas were in English, but whatever...), any requests? Like something else with N... Or Cheren and Bel... Anyone?