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The day of the long awaited semi-final match between Ash and Tobias, the Darkrai trainer, is here! Both trainers are ready for a fiery battle on the grassland battlefield, with Dawn, Brock, Barry and even Team Rocket cheering for Ash, who appears to be determined to win.

Tobias sends out Darkrai, and Dawn checks the Dark Type Pokémon's Pokédex entry. Ash sends out his first Pokémon, Heracross. Brock comments on how Heracross, being a Bug Type Pokémon, is a good choice relative to Darkrai, a Dark Type Pokémon. Ash tells Heracross to use Hyper Beam, as Tobias tells Darkrai to use Ice Beam. The two moves collide in mid-air and cancel each other out. Ash then tells Heracross to use Horn Attack; however Darkrai uses Dark Void, stopping Heracross from attacking and putting it to sleep. Nonetheless Ash orders Heracross to use Sleep Talk, which allows it to land a direct hit with Megahorn onto Darkrai. Tobias then tells Darkrai to use Dream Eater, which successfully manages to knock Heracross out, leaving Ash with five Pokémon.

Ash sends out Torkoal next, telling the Fire Type Pokémon to use Flamethrower. However, Tobias commands Darkrai to use Dark Pulse, which intercepts the Flamethrower, strikes Torkoal, and causes it to faint. Now Ash is left with just four Pokémon. Ash then sends out Gible as his third Pokémon. As Darkrai dashes towards Gible, the Dragon and Ground Type Pokémon attacks Darkrai with a Rock Smash attack. Darkrai appears to be relatively unscathed however, as Tobias tells it to use Ice Beam. Gible effectively dodges the Ice Beam and uses Draco Meteor next. Tobias tells Darkrai to dodge it, which Darkrai manages to do with its swift movements. Moreover, Darkrai precipitously uses Dark Pulse, knocking Gible out and leaving Ash with just three Pokémon. Dawn, Brock, Barry, as well as Team Rocket, are all surprised with Darkrai's strength. In the meantime, Tobias informs Ash that if it wasn't Darkrai, he would have lost to that Draco Meteor.

Ash sends out his fourth Pokémon, Sceptile. Brock comments on how Sceptile's speed and power make choosing it a good choice. Tobias tells Darkrai to use Ice Beam, which Sceptile dodges by using Quick Attack. However Darkrai is pretty fast too, avoiding the Quick Attack. Ash tells Sceptile to use Leaf Storm, as Tobias tells Darkrai to use Ice Beam. Darkrai avoids the Leaf Storm attack, and strikes Sceptile with Ice Beam. Sceptile appears to be worn out. To make things worse for the Grass Type Pokémon, Darkrai uses Dark Void, putting Sceptile to sleep. Furthermore, Darkrai uses Dream Eater on Sceptile. When it appears to be over for Sceptile, the Grass Type Pokémon responds to Ash calling for it, opens its eyes wide and attacks with a powerful Leaf Blade attack, surprising Tobias and more importantly, knocking out Darkrai. Everyone seems to be totally surprised that Darkrai was defeated, but Brock states that Tobias still has five Pokémon left.

Tobias sends out his second Pokémon, Latios. Ash is quite shocked that he now has to face a Latios, but he appears to be determined to win. Barry states that Sceptile should be fine because of its speed. Ash tells Sceptile to use Leaf Blade, however Tobias orders Latios to use Giga Impact. The Eon Pokémon strikes Sceptile with Giga Impact before it can attack, knocking it out and leaving Ash with just two Pokémon. Ash chooses Swellow next, telling it to use Quick Attack. However, Latios easily dodges it. Following some flying manoeuvres, Ash orders Swellow to dive towards the ground, with Latios doing the same. Ash then tells Swellow to use Aerial Ace, so Swellow flies towards the Sun and gets ready to attack with Aerial Ace. Nevertheless, Tobias commands Latios to use Luster Purge, which strikes Swellow, sending it crashing onto the ground and knocking it out. Things look to be pretty bad for Ash, as his friends tell him to hang in there. Ash himself reassures Pikachu, telling it that he has not given up yet and that they should quickly finish things off.

Having chosen Pikachu as his last Pokémon, Ash tells it to use Quick Attack. Latios however dodges it, as Pikachu attempts to attack using Volt Tackle. Tobias tells Latios to use Giga Impact, which allows it to block the Volt Tackle and deliver some damage to Pikachu. Tobias orders Latios to use Giga Impact once more, while Ash tells Pikachu to use Iron Tail. Pikachu however, is unable to stop the Giga Impact. Furthermore, Latios flies up in the sky and attacks with Luster Purge. When it seems to be over for Pikachu, Ash tells it to dodge the Luster Purge and get onto Latios' back, something which Pikachu successfully manages to do. While in mid-air, Ash tells Pikachu to use a Thunderbolt, which damages Latios directly. Latios then attempts to shake Pikachu off its back, however Pikachu attacks with yet another direct Thunderbolt. Nonetheless, Tobias tells Latios to use Light Screen, which protects it from Pikachu's subsequent Thunderbolt. Latios attempts to shake Pikachu off its back once again, as the Electric Type Pokémon attacks with another Thunderbolt, which is unsuccessful too. Latios then rapidly flies up high into the sky, as Ash tells Pikachu to hang in there and use Thunderbolt, which like before, has no effect either. With a swift manoeuvre, Latios dives towards the ground, leaving Pikachu in mid-air. Latios then attacks with Luster Purge, as Ash tells Pikachu to use Volt Tackle. Pikachu finds itself engulfed in the Luster Purge attack while using Volt Tackle. Nonetheless, Ash tells it to use Iron Tail as well. The Iron Tail strikes Latios, resulting in an explosion and a lot of smoke which covers the two Pokémon. When the smoke finally clears, it appears that both Pokémon have fainted. Since Ash has no Pokémon left, Tobias wins the semi-final match. Paul, who was watching the match, seems to be sad for his rival's defeat. Ash thanks Pikachu for its great effort, as Tobias approaches him, thanking him for a fine battle.

On another day, Darkrai is shown to have defeated Tobias's opponent's Magmortar in the Sinnoh League final, making Tobias the winner of the Sinnoh League. Later that day, Tobias is awarded for his achievement at the presence of Cynthia, as they, alongside countless spectators witness the lighting off of the flame. The next day, Dawn approaches Ash, telling him that the journey they've had was a long one, but that it seems to have ended in an instant. Brock comments that their journey is only just beginning. Barry, who shows up, tells Ash that he will become much stronger, as Ash and Pikachu vow to get stronger too. With the Sinnoh League behind them, Ash, Dawn and Brock continue their journey…

Thanks to Slowking for writing this for us




657: The Semi-Final Frontier

657: Sinnoh League Semi-Final! Darkrai Appears!


Yes


Ash
Brock
Dawn
Jessie
James
Mr. Goodshow
Paul
Cynthia
Barry
Tobias

Ash:
Pikachu Heracross Sceptile Swellow Torkoal Gible
Dawn:
Piplup
Jessie:
Wobbuffet
Rocket:
Meowth
Tobias:
Latios Darkrai
Special/Other Trainers:
Magmortar

Ash loses the Sinnoh League in the semi-final to Tobias