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Brock, Misty and Erika gasp in surprise as Sabrina coldly reveals that she has indeed met Red at the healing springs on Mt. Silver. Misty quickly asks about Red’s condition, but Sabrina straightens herself up with an indifferent look, and says she only came to the league to render help in the exhibition match, and holds no obligation to answer any of their questions. She then turns to walk away, and Misty instantly fumes with rage while Erika tries to calm her. Erika wants to know where Sabrina is heading, and the Saffron gymleader states that she needs to work on her focus before the match, and shall return to her resting room for a while. Leaving the noisy stadium and walking along the corridors leading to the gymleaders’ individual rooms, Sabrina crosses her arms in front of her, and begins recalling her encounter with Red on Mt. Silver…

After climbing through jagged boulders and overgrown forests, Red finally arrives at the famous healing springs on Mt. Silver. While Green has specifically lent him Charizard to handle the tough flying required for the journey, the atmosphere beyond midheight of the mountain actually made it impossible for the fire dragon to stay airbourne, and Red had to make his away through the perilous mountain roads filled with wild Pokémon hungry for battles himself.

Dipping his forearms into the lake to ensure that the water’s temperature is tolerable, Red proceeds to strip naked and submerges his whole body into the hotsprings. Charizard leans close to the water to take a sniff, but then the burning ember on its tail gets caught on by the steam, and quickly starts a fire. Red freaks and splashes water over to put out the flames while Charizard quickly withdraws its tail, and a woman’s voice suddenly comes on to comment that fire Pokémon should stay away from the spring known as the Fire Springs owing to its highly flammable steam.

Red immediately spins around to see who it is, but hits his face hard on an invisible wall instead. The voice giggles that he should simply stay where he is as she has had her Mr. Mime separate the lake by a lightscreen, and Red gasps in shock when the steam clears a little and he sees that it is Sabrina, one of the three former TR executives. The boy demands to know why Sabrina is there, and the young woman calmly replies that like him, she is there to seek ailment for her body. Seeing how Sabrina rinses her wrists every now and then with the spring water, Red realizes that she has suffered injuries from Lorelei’s ice cuffs as well.

Sabrina wants to know how the Eevee which Red saved from TR is doing, and Red reaches for his Pokéballs to send out Vui, explaining that it has evolved into an Espeon. The boy remarks that while it has lost its ability to freely transform between Vaporean, Jolteon and Flareon with its evolution, he prefers it this way as it is finally free of the effects from its past biological engineering. Sabrina puts on a little smile as she watches Red pat Vui on the head, and announces that it is time for her to leave.

Red frantically spins around in embarrassment when Sabrina stands up from the water, and keeps himself submerged while Sabrina gets dressed and tells him about the congregation of all gymleaders at the Pokémon Association Headquarters. The Saffron gymleader says Red should probably hurry as well, since something serious is about is happen at the league tournament, and Red wonders how Sabrina knew it. The young woman snickers that no one beats her when it comes to psychic premonitions, and reveals that she actually foresaw Red’s arrival at the healing springs as well.

She then calls out her Kadabra, and teleports away with it before Red could stop her, and the boy hollers that he doesn’t see how he could render any help to the situation as it takes time for him to heal. Just as he says that, a metal spoon with a small note tied around it materializes in front of him. Red opens it to read a message from Sabrina, and learns that there in fact exist medicinal springs that are more powerful higher up in the mountain, and that the Spoon of Fate she left him will guide the way…

Back in her own resting room at the Indigo Plateau stadium, Sabrina finishes recalling her encounter with Red, and wonders why she feels a thrill everytime she meets him. She rationalizes that perhaps it’s because the boy resembles Giovanni in some way, and notices from the small television in her room that Lt. Surge is battling it out with his opponent, Morty of Ecruteak, in the stadium.

Out on the stadium stage, Lt. Surge orders another thunder, and Electrabuzz once again directs a powerful bolt of electricity down from the ceiling to strike Morty’s Gastly. Morty switches in Misdreavus to continue the fight, but Electrabuzz blasts it with yet another thunder. Seeing the scorched and painful appearance of Misdreavus, Lt. Surge laughs that it seems an easy match to him, and tells Electrabuzz to finish it off. However, to his shock, the electric Pokémon fails to pull off the move this time. Morty grins that his Gastly did more than simply taking hits earlier, and Lt. Surge realizes with a start that the ghost Pokémon has inflited a spite on his Electrabuzz.

Down at the Kanto gymleaders’ sitting area, Erika explains to Misty that powerful attacks like thunder tire a Pokémon a lot, and they can no longer be elicited after a certain limit is reached. Brock carries on to say that spite must have made Electrabuzz hit the limit much earlier than normal, and thus prematurely disabled its thunder attack.

While Lt .Surge is still momentarily stunned by the realization, Morty grabs that chance to order a painsplit from Misdreavus, and Electrabuzz quickly feels its energy draining away from it when the ghost Pokémon made contact. Morty remarks that the move works best when one Pokémon is on the verge of fainting while the other has nearly full HP, as it is capable of instantly equalizing the damage done on both parties.

Getting fervent in her narration, Mary exclaims that the advantage Lt. Surge gained earlier by his consecutive powerful assaults on Morty’s Pokémon seemsw to have been totally negated. Morty then hollers that as an expert in ghost types, his strategy is to use various means to steal the strength from his opponents, and has Misdreavus release a psywave. Lt. Surge switches in Magnemite just in time, but the attack hits the magnet Pokémon directly.

Lt. Surge comments that Morty appears much stronger and determined than his skinny and seemingly frail physique suggests, and wonders if Morty realize that victory itself might not be the sole motivation in a battle. Morty puts on a grin, and says like himself, Lt. Surge seems to have other aspirations in mind apart from fighting for his own region. Lt. Surge makes no attempt in denying that he is indeed seeking out a man whom he shall revenge on, and says he will not allow himself any defeats before that. He adds that he is even certain the man he’s looking for is present in the stadium right now, and turns to steal a glance at Pryce who’s sitting in the Johto gymleaders’ area.

Acknowledging Lt. Surge’s motivation, Morty remarks that his aspiration, on the other hand, is the legendary rainbow Pokémon which his distant vision fails to see, and says to heighten his senses to such capability, he has promised himself not to lose as well. Lt. Surge grins that both of them seem determined to win, and says the only question left is whether his electric waves or Morty’s mental waves are stronger.

Commanding Magnemite to pull the two U-shaped magnet bars on its side to point forward, the Vermillion gymleader switches the magnet Pokémon'ss defensive electromagnetic waves to offensive, and orders it to fire a zap cannon…

Thanks To Coronis For Writing this for us




157: VS. Magnemite!


Volume 13