Episode #290 - On A Wingull and A Prayer!
Before catching the ferry to Dewford Island, May suggests that they try out one of Rustboro City's famous pasta restaurants. When they get there, the place is boarded up. Turns out that the article May was referring to is out of date.
The port is a fair distance away and Ash is upset that they'll miss the Dewford ferry now. May is sure that she'll be able to find a boat somewhere and goes looking. All the shops in the area are abandoned and she sees no people until she finds a white-bearded man fishing from a dock. His name is Mr. Briney and he has a Wingull named Piko, with whom May makes friends by giving it some Pokemon food.
Team Rocket is close by, and plans to follow May back to the others so they can grab Pikachu. Mr. Briney tells May that he used to sail often and he'd be happy to take the kids to Dewford in his boat. As May hurries off to fetch her friends, Team Rocket decides to catch the Wingull too. Unknown to them, someone else is also watching...
May soon returns with the others but Briney angrily tells them to leave and shuts himself in his house. May doesn't understand the abrupt change of behaviour. Inside, Briney is being threatened by a member of Team Aqua, who has Piko in a cage and will hurt it unless he cooperates.
The kids soon decide to walk to the port, but are met by Officer Jenny who remembers them. She tells them that the Team Aqua member who had broken into Devon Corporation has escaped into this area. He's trying to rendezvous with his team but her police checkpoints will make escape difficult.
When Jenny leaves, the kids piece things out. If the gang member wanted to escape without being seen, he'd need a boat. The only person with a boat in the area was Mr. Briney. May realizes that he was pretending to be angry in order to protect them. The kids return to Mr. Briney's house and pound on the door but he doesn't answer. When they run around back, they find themselves face to face with the Crawdaunt!
The Team Aqua gang member has forced Briney to give him his boat. Pikachu is ready to battle, but smoke bombs drop out of the sky and stop everything. It's Team Rocket in their balloon, and they use a suction device to sweep up Pikachu and the caged Wingull! Brock's Lotad uses its Water Gun to short out the device, and the two Pokemon are freed. However, the Crawdaunt gets Piko's cage first and sends Team Rocket blasting off.
The Aqua goon escapes in Briney's boat. But Briney has another boat, a sleek pontoon-style boat shaped like a Wingull, which he had planned to use to travel the seas. They quickly catch up, and although the Crawdaunt makes every effort to swamp them, they won't give up. Eventually the Aqua member abandons the boat, leaving Piko in the cage, but some quick thinking by Briney enables him to save his friend.
Suddenly, a giant submarine with the Team Aqua logo on it appears! The gang member escapes, leaving the Briney and the kids with the mystery of what this Team Aqua is.
Later, May feeds the hungry Piko and laments that she didn't get to try the famous pasta. Briney says that the owner of the pasta restaurant is a friend of his. They'll order out and then he'll take them all to Dewford Island in the morning.