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Rain continues to fall at Littleroot. Ruby's mother lets out a sigh, and remembers the phone call she received from Norman a few months ago just before they moved to Hoenn. That night, Norman told her that he has finally come to terms with Ruby taking part in contests, and said that once Ruby turns 11, he should be old enough to make choices for himself. Norman remarked that despite his own disregard for Pokémon contests, he believed that a man should decide on his own path in life. Ruby's mother was told not to reveal anything to Ruby until the boy turned 11, which was also the exact same day that they would move to Hoenn, and Norman added that he would tell it to Ruby himself during the birthday celebration they've planned for him on the night of arrival. Ruby's mother sighs again as she takes another look at the letter she's holding. She wonders if there will still come a time when both her husband and son could return to her side and live together as a family.

Meanwhile, at the rooftop of the Weather Institute, the whole stack of staircases have crumbled and Norman quickly clutches onto the waterpipe while grabbing Ruby's hand tight below. Ruby sees that the ground beneath them is jagged with sharp rubbles of the building and knows that it would be their end if they fall. Norman's hand begins to slip on the waterpipe from the rain and he tells Castform to move its sunshine area towards him. The rain instantly stops as Castform hovers above them, and Ruby realizes that Pokémon induced weather conditions have only a limited range of effect. The waterpipe suddenly snaps into half, and Ruby hollers in shock as he and Norman begin to plummet.

Feebas pops out from its pokeball and starts making a 'mimi' sound. Ruby instinctively decides to call it Mimi, and quickly tells it to save them with its mirror coat and light screen, but their descending speed is too quick to be stopped by the thin barriers, and they continue to plunge towards the pile of jagged rubbles. Norman all of a sudden yells for Ruby to activate his running shoes, and the boy hurriedly does so. The high-speed spinning at the base of the shoes creates a swirl of air current to propel the two away from the deadly ground below, and throws them onto a grassland in the woods. The two lie panting on the ground, and Ruby takes a look at his running shoes. He finds it amusing how his birthday present from his father ended up saving them both, and soon loses consciousness.

Gabby, Ty and Jack hurry out from the building and dash into the woods. As they arrive, they see that Norman is holding up a pokeball, and exclaim that the man still wants to beat up his son. Norman's Pokegear suddenly beeps, and he answers to hear Winona's annoyed voice. The Fortree Gymleader accuses him of damaging public facilities, and Norman looks up to see the woman flying on her Altaria with a pink-haired girl.

Winona says the Pokémon Association has sent her to look for him since people are complaining about the prolonged absence of Norman from the Petalburg Gym, and introduces the girl beside her as Flannery, the new gymleader of Lavaridge Town. Flannery embarrassedly says the Pokémon Association was actually after her as well since she, too, stayed away from her gym duties a little too long, and Winona sighs that her job as the Hoenn Gymleader Supervisor appears to be tougher than she thought.

Norman takes another look at Ruby, who is still lying unconscious on the ground, and decides that the boy could probably still hear him. He remarks that he no longer objects to him taking part in Pokémon contests, but says once a man decided on something, he should not return until he has accomplished his goal. He states that he knows nothing about contests, but has learnt from someone about the necessary items associated. He pulls out a Pokeblock case from his pocket, and places it in Ruby's hand. He then tells the boy to remember phoning his mother, and turns around to climb on Winona's Altaria.

Gabby, Ty and Jack are deeply touched by what they saw and start to have tears in their eyes. Gabby and Ty decide to take Ruby along with them as the sun begins to rise, and Jack offers to help them carry Ruby to their car. Although Ruby still haven't regained consciousness, he did manage to hear his father's words, and secretly thanks him in his thoughts. Jack waves goodbye with his Staryu as Gabby and Ty take off and head towards Verdanturf. He suddenly remembers about his Feebas plan, and frantically scurries after the car, but Gabby and Ty have already driven too far away and the swimmerboy could do nothing but sulk in depression.

In the car, Nana, Coco, Zuzu and Mimi help pull a blanket over Ruby, and Castform watches the scene with a little upset. Gabby knows that the little Pokémon is longing to have companions, and tells it to join Ruby if it wishes. Castform lightens up and quickly hovers over Ruby, where it is warmly welcomed by the boy's four Pokémon. Gabby suggests to Ty that they give Castform to Ruby, but Ty thinks it's not a good idea to make decisions on someone else's Pokémon. Gabby grins that it doesn't matter since Mr. Stone is still lying unconscious at the hospital, and says Castform needs companions anyway. She remarks that Castform must have connected to Ruby in a special way to have helped them out in the Weather Institute, and tells Ty not to worry too much.

As the car crosses the mountains and heads towards Verdanturf, Sapphire is travelling along the opposite direction on foot with her Pokémon. After climbing up the small hill she's on, she looks up to discover that she has arrived at the famous Mt. Chimney...

Countdown to our heroes' rival showdown: 55 days!

Thanks To Coronis For Writing this for us

211: VS. Slaking (Part 3)!

Volume 17

Norman stops fighting with Ruby
Ruby gets Castform