We are Hideyoshi's Army, Hideyoshi's Militia, Hideyoshi's Team. Ransei would soon be completely under our rule, and what would happen then is still a mystery. We were working fast, though, especially since we had three armies: Hideyoshi's Party (the first army), Kazutoyo's Party (the third army), and Oichi's Army (the second army and my own).
Hideyoshi had decided to put me in charge of a second army after we took Violight and had Ginchiyo join us. He had said, "We have so many strong warriors and only so much space for one party! We should have two!" It did give us a huge advantage because we could take kingdoms twice as fast, but I never really wanted to lead a party.
I don't like Pokémon battle too much in the first place. It's just two Pokémon teams beating each-other up for the goal of victory and satisfaction of their trainers. I praise Jigglypuff whether she wins or losses, but some people, like Kanbei, are hardly kind to their Pokémon even when they do win. This all sickens me, but once we unite Ransei, I think some sort of legendary prophecy is going to be fulfilled, so I choose to fight and help Hideyoshi out.
Today each of the three armies is to send three or more representatives, including yourself, to a meeting. These meetings are held on the first day of every month to discuss plans. This month's destination was Terrera. I am going to have to decide who needs to go in about five minutes, because I procrastinated so much.
"Er, Oichi, have you decided who is fit to go to the meeting yet?" asks Terumoto, breaking my train of thought.
"Oh! I'm sorry, I'm still thinking about it," I reply.
"Okay, but you need to decide quickly," He advises, "We need to leave for the meeting really soon if we are to get there in time."
We have to leave early, because we are in Yaksha at the moment. I nod to him and work it out in my head: Kanbei is a jerk, but he is knowledgeable and helps me out a lot when I don't know what to say, plus he keeps track of things I don't. Who else will come? Magoichi, I suppose, will be a good choice, although he is a very flirty type.
I walk out into the main room, where everyone was awaiting my decision. Immediately, heads turn to look at me. The room had strange, dark ornaments hanging around, which made me feel anxious to leave, so I cut straight to the chase.
"I have decided that me, Kanbei, and Magoichi will come. I'll give you guys five minutes to get ready, so meet me in the front, okay?" they both nod and leave to get ready. I see the disappointed face of Go, the only other girl in the Second Army, and walk over to her. "Sorry, Go, but we need a girl to take care of the place while I'm gone," I joke, and she smiles lightly.
I walk to the front door and wait. The sun is high in the sky, but it still feels dark here, and a chilly, damp wind blows. Since the castle is in a valley, the sun disappears behind the mountains quicker, and large shadows cast over the town when the sun sets. Today, I will be glad to say goodbye to this miserable place as fast as I can.
After the two boys get ready, we set out along the coast until we get into the calm deserts of Terrera. It isn't long before I see the tall red castle amongst the sand, and quickly we enter. I make my way to the main hall, beckoned by the smell of beef. Upon entering, I see the other warriors and their Pokémon. I walk over to greet Hideyoshi first.
Hideyoshi is talking to a boy about my age wearing a white coat and a strange white hat. His brown hair isn't the most attended to. He crosses his arms behind his head and yawns.
"Can we make this meeting quick?" he says with an impatient tone.
"Yes, Oichi is here, so we are about to start," Hideyshi says and turns to me. "Are you ready? And who did you bring with you?"
"I am," I reply, "and I brought Kanbei and Magoichi."
"Kanbei is here?" the boy asks, looking at me with deep purple eyes. I nod. "Where?" I point to where I remember Kanbei last being, and he walks off.
"Who was that?" I ask Hideyoshi. I wasn't particularly interested, but he was somewhat of a peculiar character.
Hideyoshi smirks and replies, "That's Hanbei. Notice how he seems sleepy?" I nod, reminded of his lax posture. "He's always like that."
I blink at his words. Always sleepy? Would he fall asleep during their battles? Would he beckon the team along so he could get some beauty sleep in the afternoon? I shook off the thoughts; Hideyoshi was probably just exaggerating.
I decide to go greet Kazutoyo, the leader of the third army, before the meeting started. As I walk towards him, someone pokes me on the shoulder. I turn to see Ginchiyo. Despite this being a formal occasion, she is dressed in light armor and, as always, has a wary look in her black eyes.
"Hello Oichi, is the second army doing okay?" she asks. She purses her lips and looks around the room as she waits for my reply.
"Yes, we were successful last month in taking Yaksha," I say.
She clears her throat. "I thought you would want to know that I might be moved into the second army. If I am, then I'll probably be switched out with Go."
"Why?" I ask, a bit angry because Go was a good friend. "You're great on the battlefield."
"Because we have two electric-types in our team: my Luxio and Hanbei's Flaaffy," she glanced at Hanbei as she mentions him. "Of course, he also might move Hanbei."
I look at Hanbei, and imagine him being on our team. He seems like a lazy person, which is something we don't need anywhere in Jordan's Army. Why is he in the First Army? Either he's really powerful, or he isn't as lazy as he looks. In that case, his Flaaffy must have some power. I shake my head, telling myself not to judge him so much, but how can someone like him not be lazy?
"Everyone, we are about to start the meeting! Step around the table and we'll discuss battle plans," Hideyoshi announces. Everyone surrounds the table, and I end up with Ginchiyo to my left and Kanbei to my right. "Okay everyone, this month's big goal is to secure Valora and Dragnor. My party is going to take Valora, and…" he continues to explain the goal. I look down the table at Hanbei, who is sitting next to Kanbei. He watches Hideyoshi, looking like a typical high-school student during the last few minutes of school. "Oichi? Do you have a Pokémon in your team who can take care of that?" Hideyoshi asks, and everyone looks at me expectantly.
"Um…" I say, and glance at Kanbei.
He looks at Hideyoshi and says, "We don't have any ice-types or dragon-types, so I suggest we do a temporary switch out, unless you wish for a possible change in plans instead." He gives me an unpleasant look, and I turn away, embarrassed.
I listen for the rest of decision of the battle plans. Our team would be taking a warrior with a Cubchoo, so we could have a type advantage when we attack Dragnor. I try to think about the battle, but for some reason I have a hard time doing so.
"Oichi," Hideyoshi says, "I have gotten word they have a Shinx with them as well. Do you have anything for an electric-type?"
"Well… Carnivine and Petilil are grass-type, so they aren't strongly affected by them. I think that will be fine."
Hideyoshi nods to me and then says, "Ginchiyo. Com'ere."
Ginchiyo walks over and talks quietly with Hideyoshi for a moment. Afterwards, Hideyoshi turns back to us and explains, "Masamune from Oichi's Party and Hanbei from mine will switch places for this battle."
"Why?" Hanbei demands immediately.
"Because Flaaffy is going to get pawned by that Quagsire again! And it won't affect a flying-type, plus the-"
"The range of flying-types would be good on the jumbled battlefield at Valora, I know. But flying-type moves are resisted by steel-types, so it won't be useful in any other ways."
"But my Monferno can pawn the steel-type!"
"And Monferno is weak to ground-type."
"So take a flying-type to fix that!"
As I listen to them bicker, I realized something. Hanbei is an absolute genius. He can take the battlefield into the palm of his hand like a chess board, analyzing each piece and deciding what would fit best. Also, he works well with Hideyoshi. Though the two argue, they quickly work out how Staravia could highly benefit them, and eventually agree to the plan.
"Okay, now that that is covered up, we can decide battle plans for Oichi and the rest of my party. Hanbei, you and Oichi and Magoichi discuss it, then." Hideyoshi commands.
So, we talk the battle over. I try to suggest things, but every time I do Hanbei immediately points out the biggest flaw, then revises my idea to fit in. Finally, I give an idea he finds good, and pretty soon we have a piece of paper with the plans for the battle spread across it.
"As long as Dratini doesn't manage to get over here and use Dragon Rage, I'm sure this plan will work," Hanbei concluded, swiping his eyes over the paper. He glances at me, and I feel a strange jump in my stomach when he does. He turns to go tell Hideyoshi we had finished, and I look at my shaky hand.
"What is your problem?" I ask myself quietly, "He just looked at you."
Finally, after everyone completely decides what we are going to do, we leave to prepare. We are to go back to Yaksha, then spend the next two days traveling along the eastern coast until we reach Spectra, which I have heard is even spookier than Yaksha. Spectra is pretty much the only kingdom we have that borders Dragnor, though, so we have no choice. Thus, the four of us travel back to Yaksha. Once we are there, Hanbei explains to Masamune why he will be with Hideyoshi's Party for this month, and we all try to sleep in the eerie black bedrooms that smell like pepper and cinnamon and have beds as hard as rocks.
After a lot of tossing and turning, I become too restive and get out of bed to wander the castle for a while. As I walk, I hear an unusual sound: the steady breath of a sleeping person. I crawl slowly into the room the sound was coming from and see someone sleeping as though they were laying on a wonderful memory-foam mattress bed with the most silky soft sheets and fluffy pillows in all of Ransei, rather than a lump of coal with a sheet of tin foil and some rocks in the darkest part of Ransei: Hanbei.
Thank you for reading! Please review! I love reviews, especially those with criticism.