Okay, to fill everyone in I am currently trying to put together my own Pokemon Manga. This follows game canon (the only true canon if you ask me) and is set roughly fifteen years after Black 2 and White 2. It has entirely homemade characters (apart from ONE, but we'll get to that later), a new region to explore, new Gyms, maybe even a few new Pokemon, we'll never know I figured I'd write up a novelisation and adapt that into the manga or vice versa, but here goes! I would highly appreciate feedback!
Much like in our own, technology marches on in the Pokemon World. The high-tech Pokemon encyclopedias known as Pokedexes, previously trusted only to certain people to help Professors with their research, are now mass-produced and readily available to any Trainer. Villages and rural towns began to grow into cities and change the landscape of the planet.
Despite these growing changes, one thing that has always been a constant is the ambition of the world's people. Every day, countless ten-year-old children obtain their first Pokemon and set of on their own journey, some to take on their region's Pokemon League and try to become Champion, some to take part in Contests and become Coordinators, some to become Breeders, Connoisseurs, Professors and so on. Soon, one such adventure will start, albeit later than most, for two teenagers working in Professor Balsa's Pokemon Lab outside of Preluda City, in the far-off Ramor region. Who knows what sights will await them? What challenges they will face? What obstacles they will have to overcome? All we know for sure is that their lives will be changed forever, as they take their first true steps into a brave new world!
The Road Not Taken
Magnet Train Station
Amara Tokare's day started the same as any other. Wake up, head downtown to the station, take the magnet train to Preluda City, get to the Pokemon Lab situated in the city's University and spend the day helping with research or looking after the Pokemon in the nearby nature reserve, as she had done for the past five years.
While her travelling around Ramor was short-lived, she had a capacity for adventure that could never be filled, that the daily train from one town to another would never begin to satiate. She loved caring for the Pokemon in the reserve, she regularly brought her Cyndaquil with her to let him stretch his legs and play with the other Pokemon, she didn't care what they payed her to do it as long as she got to do what she loved. Unfortunately, even this was starting to bore her.
Tending to wild Pokemon in a nature reserve was one thing, but she longed to raise her own Pokemon like she did her Cyndaquil. She wanted to travel the region all over again, take on the Pokemon League like she never did, make friends, rivals, live her life to the fullest!
Her daydreaming eventually subsided, and Amara returned to her work with a sigh.
Professor Balsa's Pokemon Lab, Trainer's University
Cato Balsa had been at his father's lab since yesterday morning, having fallen asleep with his head in a book. His life was quiet, even boring by most's standards, but he loved it. He was a bookworm by any definition, he preferred staying indoors in the lab doing research with his father, Professor Daryl Balsa, over almost anything. He spent most of his childhood playing with the Pokemon in the nature reserve near the university or in the Lab with his father, and even chose not to become a Trainer on his 10th birthday to become his father's Aide.
He had friends at the University, he worked closely with his fellow Aide, Amara, and even spent a lot of time playing with his older sister, Carmen, when she visited home during her own journey. He missed her greatly, but doesn't blame her for leaving. After all, he chose not to become a Trainer to do what he loved, she left home to do what she wanted.
He checked his watch and groaned, having fallen asleep at the Lab again. Dad's gonna be pissed, he thought. This happened a lot, he would be up doing research until 3 in the morning, and simply pass out with his face in a book. While his father enjoyed the dedication Cato had to his work, it bothered him that he spent so much time studying instead of making friends with other students.
Cato rubbed his eyes and stretched, before gathering his books and wandering outside to get some air before starting his day.
This momentary peace was interrupted when Professor Balsa approached him.
"Fall asleep in the Lab again, kiddo?" the professor asked sarcastically.
"Time flies when you're having fun, I guess it just slipped away from me. Sorry, Dad." Cato replied, still tired from his lack of sleep.
Professor Balsa simply shook his head.
"Cato, I'm a Pokemon Professor. I spent years studying in Johto as an Aide, then I travelled overseas a lot before I got this job. Even by my standards, you spend far too much time in this Lab with your nose in a book!" he said, bored of having to talk to his son about this.
"I'm sorry Dad. I just prefer doing this. It's what I enjoy doing." Cato responded, rolling his eyes.
"Okay, son, go home. Take a week off, go do something other than sit in this Lab and read. Am I understood?" the Professor sighed.
"Yes, Dad. Whatever you say.." Cato mumbled, before leaving the university campus.
Preluda Pokemon Sanctuary
Outside Preluda City
Cato walked through the reserve and sat down under a tree. When he couldn't go to the Lab, he would come here to be alone with his thoughts. He was more of an indoors person, but he enjoyed how peaceful it was here. He could spend all day under this tree with no disruption other than the occasional wild Pokemon. As he closed his eyes and tried to get some shuteye, he heard footsteps. So much for my nap.
He opened his eyes and saw Amara walking towards him with her usual welcoming smile.
"Hey, dude! The professor kick you out again?" she asked, while setting down food for the wild Pokemon.
"Yep. Fell asleep in the lab again." Cato replied, the exhaustion in his voice being made clear.
"Can you blame him? You spend so much time in that lab, if you ever decided to go talk to the other students, even the geeks would be giving you a wedgie!" Amara responded with her usual humorous side.
"True, I can't help liking what I do though." Cato sighed.
"I don't see how you keep it up though. I'll admit, I like this job, but I'm getting bored of it! Day in, day out, it's just feeding Pokemon and doing research! I want to get back out into the world! Explore! See what the region has to offer besides a University in a city surrounded by mountains!" Amara began to vent, her irritation with her current life being made clear.
"Well, there's actually nothing keeping you here. If you want to go travelling, it's all up to you." Cato smiled at his best friend.
"That's true, but part of me doesn't want to leave. Cyndaquil likes it here. It reminds him of home."
After saying this, she takes a PokeBall off of her belt and releases her Cyndaquil, which, unlike others of it's kind, has blue flames shooting from his back.
"I remember when I caught him. I was in Rijon on vacation at the time, and he just stood out. We've been friends since." She smiled at both Cato and Cyndaquil.
"You've never told me that, Amara." Cato acknowleged her sentiment. The conversation was soon cut off by both Cato and Amara's Xtrancievers beeping.
Both picked up, discovering that Professor Balsa was calling them.
"Cato, Amara, come to the Lab! There's something you need to see!" he said quickly, excitement obvious in his voice.
"What's, up, Professor?" Amara asked.
"I just got an intriguing report from some colleagues around Ramor! You'll want to see this!" the Professor exclaimed.
"Okay, Dad, we'll be on our way." Cato responded, before hanging up. Amara quickly recalled Cyndaquil, finished feeding the wild Pokemon and both ran back to the University.
Professor Balsa's Pokemon Lab, Trainer's University
Professor Balsa paced back and forth in excitement. What he had just learned had excited him more than anything had in years. Cato and Amara both enter the Lab, approaching the Professor's desk.
"What's happened?" both ask.
"I'll show you!" the Professor responded, turning his computer to them. On the screen were pictures of various unrecognised Pokemon from around the region.
"These were sent to me by my colleagues around Ramor." he explained.
"I don't think I've seen these before..." Amara noted. She then produced her Pokedex and scanned the pictures. The encyclopedia had no data whatsoever on these creatures.
"These Pokemon have never been seen before! This is a breakthrough discovery!" Professor Balsa exclaimed.
Cato was speechless. Even after all these years, even when Pokedexes are publically available, Discoveries like this still happened, and he was witnessing one such breakthrough!
"I have something to ask of you, Cato. I'm obviously preoccupied with teaching here, so I need you to do some field work for me. I'll give you a Pokedex, I want you to search for new Pokemon like these and document them for future Pokedex updates. Can you do this for me, son?" Professor Balsa asked.
"I would be honoured, Dad. I'm glad I can be a part of a breakthrough like this!" Cato responded in excitement.
"But I can pick up a Pokedex from the Poke Mart on the way, don't worry about that." he added.
"Ah, but the mass-produced Pokedexes house all the information for DISCOVERED Pokemon, and don't have the capacity to add new entries. I want you to take MY Pokedex." he replied, and pulled a transparent device the size of a notebook out of his labcoat pocket.
"This is a special-issue Pokedex. It's sort of like an administrator model. These share a private network with others of it's kind and can share any information they gather. They also have the capability of adding new entries. Take this, use it to register these new Pokemon. The information you gather will be shared with Pokemon Professors around the world. You'll be doing very important work, son, and I thank you for doing this for me."
"I'll go home and pack. I'm also going to let Mom know I'll be gone. Thank you for trusting me with this, Dad." Cato replied, finding all of this hard to take in, before walking out of the lab, mounting his motorcycle and leaving.
After a moment of silence, Professor Balsa turned to Amara.
"I also have something to ask of you too, Amara. I know you've been thinking of leaving to start an adventure of your own, so can I ask that you keep an eye on Cato while he is gone? He's fine by himself, but I'm hoping that being out and around people will help him out of his shell."
"No problem! Having some company would keep us both sane. And I don't blame you. Cato's a nice guy, he just needs to get out more. I'll keep an eye on him for you while I take on the Pokemon League and he is cataloguing for you!" Amara smiled, knowing she could finally go off on an adventure without feeling like she was abandoning her duties.
"I would suggest that you head to Sankamono Town and take on the Gym there. There's a Gym here, but you will need to train a lot more before you're ready to take him on. Thank you, Amara. Now get out of here and go have some fun." Professor Balsa smiled and watched her leave.
Several hours later
Preluda City Centre
Cato had been having a very eventful day. It had gone from the usual sitting around the lab doing research, to packing his bag and leaving to explore the world in the name of science. His mother had reacted just as he'd expected; sad that now both of her children are leaving home, but happy that they were both doing what they loved. He was ready to leave, but first he'd called his sister, Carmen, to let her know what had been going on.
"Really? You? Outside? Who are you and what have you done with my baby brother!" Carmen Balsa joked after hearing the news.
"I know, I hardly believe it! Maybe you could come with me? You have a better knowledge of the region than I do, you'd have a better idea of where to go than I would." Cato asked.
"Oh, I would love to, bro, but I'm not in Ramor anymore. I've spent the last few months in the Telov region after I beat Ramor's league. Sorry!" Carmen said disappointingly.
"No worries, I'll figure something out." Cato responded, disappointed that he couldn't be reunited with his older sister, who has been away from home for over fourteen years and become the Ramor League Champion. At this point, Amara had been let in and walked into Cato's room.
"Is that Carmen?! Holy crap, I haven't seen you in years!" Amara exclaimed.
"Amara? Wow, it's been a while! How's that cool Cyndaquil of yours? Reconsidered that offer to trade, yet?" Carmen responded with her usual smile.
"Keep dreaming, champ. He's mine." Amara responded with a joking smile.
"If you say so. Anyways, I'd better be going, I'm not far from Frodomar City and I've got my eye set on it's Gym! Talk to you later!" Carmen replied, before hanging up.
Amara smiled at Cato, who returned it.
"Hey, Cato, I was wondering if you wanted me to tag along while you're doing that thing for your dad?" Amara asked.
"Sure! I could use someone who has experience travelling the region. Let me know when you're ready to go!" Cato smiled.
"I've been ready for years, pal. I'll meet you at the University in the morning!" she smiled.
The next few hours were spent packing their bags and talking about past adventures and what may be in store for the pair. Amara slept on the Balsa's couch, it being far too late for her to get the train back home. Tomorrow would be the day everything changed for the better, for both her and Cato.
The next morning
On the road
Cato was feeling more energized than usual today, this being a mixture of his impending departure and his remembering that a bed is a lot more comfortable than a desk. He and Amara left not long after waking up and took his motorcycle to the Lab. They took this time to further discuss the first steps of their journey.
"So what's the plan once we leave? Take the Magnet Train up to Kayarii so you can finish getting ready?" Cato shouted.
"Where's the fun in that? We should hoof it! Make our way through Strata Valley! Where's the adventure in just taking the short route? Who knows, we might find one of those new Pokemon along the way!" Amara shouted back.
"You have a point. I haven't seen my dad get anywhere near this excited since we spotted that Shaymin in the Sanctuary! This is a huge discovery!" Cato pointed out.
"I saw that, I've been working for the Professor since I was thirteen, I've never seen that look on his face before!" Amara responded.
"I've been with the guy all my life and I've never seen it either!" Cato remarked.
"That reminds me, what Pokemon are you taking with you? It'd help if you didn't go alone, and Cyndaquil would have a friend!" she asked out of curiosity.
"I don't have any. I never became a Trainer remember?" he answered.
"That'll have to change! Even if you're just doing field research, having a Pokemon with you helps!" Amara exclaimed.
"I knew that much but I've never done any field research, remember? I've never needed my own Pokemon." he responded.
"No wonder you're so lonely! Pokemon are great company! I'd be lost without my little buddy at my side!" Amara said, looking at the lone Pokeball on her belt with a smile.
"If you say so. We're here!" Cato shouted before slowing down, parking his motorcycle and letting Amara and himself get off. Professor Balsa was already there, waiting for them.
"You two took your sweet time getting here!" The Professor said to the pair.
"Sorry, Professor! My dad told me not to spend all night at the Lab again, I guess he didn't get the memo!" Cato replied sarcastically.
"Funny. Anyways, before you two get going, I wanted to make sure you had everything you need." He responded, handing a small sack to Amara.
"I went down to the Botany Department and picked a few of those crossbred berries your Cyndaquil loves so much, Amara. If anyone asks, a Rattata got in and ate them, understood?" He smiled mischievously as he gave her the sack of Rawst/Sitrus hybrid berries.
"Thanks, Professor! And don't worry, I know how annoying Rattatas can be!" She replied with a wink. He then turned to Cato, and handed his Pokedex to his son.
"I've uploaded the photos onto it, so you'll have a basic idea of what you're looking for. I've asked the guys at the Observatory to forward any further reports to you, just in case. Don't worry about your bike, I'll make sure it's safe. Good luck." He said goodbye and shook hands with both Cato and Amara, before watching them leave.