The room was silent save for Athena’s sobbing. Everyone was still trying to comprehend this revelation about her. The idea of a survivor from the Psychic Colony was ludicrous; no one survived the attack. Galahad, still holding onto Athena, stood up straight and no longer pushed her against the wall. He now was holding her up, preventing her from falling to her knees. She had basically lost all control, even the power to stand up. Fluffs couldn’t believe how much of a wreck Athena was in this moment. Galahad looked at the distraught Gardevoir.
“Athena, how did it happen?” he asked. Athena just could not compose herself. She continued to cry. “Athena, please.” Still no response.
“I can answer that for you.” Ragnarok spoke up. Galahad, Fluffs, Cobalt, and Shinobi looked at him.
“You can?” Galahad asked.
“Yes.” And the blade began to tell the story of Athena.
The Psychic Colony was Athena’s home, the only home she had ever known. She was a Ralts, the only Ralts there, when the colony was attacked by the Evil Type. A wave of Dark Type Pokemon surged through the buildings, slaughtering any Pokemon in their way. A Krookodile and its Krokoroks dug through the terrain, snatching up victims from all over. Flying Types flew overhead, attacking the helpless Pokemon below. Athena ran through the chaos, looking for a way out to safety. But there was no escape. She reached the cliff edge, following others that had leaped off the edge into the sea, hoping to swim to shore. But she saw only death below. Sharpedo and Carvanha waited below, ready to tear any new victims apart when they entered the water. Athena had no way out. Just then, a large figure lunged at her, it missed, but caused her to fall off the edge toward the sea. In one last ditch effort to survive, the young Ralts activated Teleport, and warped to a random location nearby. That location turned out to be a significant distance away from the colony, but still in the sea. Luckily for her, no Evil Types were there to attack her. She swam to shore, exhausted from the shock. Just then, she saw it. The Krookodile and Krokoroks used Dig to cause the cliff-side colony to become so unstable that the entire land mass it was on to sheer itself off and crumble into the water, disappearing forever. Athena was traumatized, now lost in the world without her home and friends. But that is when she found me.
We ran into each other in the Hub. Hiding from the larger, more powerful Pokemon, Athena was scared of this new world she was in. Running from others, she literally ran into me. I was just a Honedge at the time, so Athena immediately “latched” onto me. We became good friends and were pretty much inseparable. But then, when a Dark Type was harassing another Pokemon, Athena lost it. She grabbed me awkwardly, charged the Dark Type, and began waving me in front of it. Scared by the sudden “attack”, the Dark Type fled. It was at that moment something clicked in Athena’s mind. Working together, she and I could do great things to help others avoid conflict with the Evil Type. She began to train in the art of sword fighting, using me as her blade. She grew stronger and more skilled with the blade. We evolved together, Kirlia and Doublade, and then Gardevoir and Aegislash. We continued to fight others that meant harm, and made it our job to stop all Evil Types we could find.
“And that’s her story Galahad.” Ragnarok concluded. The others stood in awe from the story. They looked back to Athena, who had been able to collect herself; tear streams were still visible on her face. She was breathing hard, but was able to stand on her own two feet. Galahad let her arms go, and took the time to wipe Athena’s face off with his hand. She closed her eyes and looked away, still trying to retain her persona, but Galahad ignored it. He finally understood her pain. He finally understood her motives and why she fights the way she does.
“I am so sorry to hear this about you.” Cobalt spoke up. “I can’t even begin to understand what you went through.” Fluffs dove at Athena and hugged her tightly. Athena remained unresponsive. Fluffs was on the verge of crying herself, but tried very hard not to start.
“Athena,” Shinobi said. Athena looked up to him. The others turned to him. He paused for a short time, and then continued. “I’ll tell you where to find the Dark Type that will help you. Listen to my instructions carefully, because without them, you will not find him.”
“I’ve got a bad feeling about this.” Fluffs said, her voice wavering.
“Don’t worry,” Athena said, “remember that you are in safe company.”
Athena, Fluffs, Ragnarok, and Galahad stood on a hill overlooking the location that Shinobi told them to go to; The Forest of Darkness, an ominous wooded area that few Pokemon ever tried to enter. Acres and acres of dead trees lay before the group, shrouded in a thick mist. The forest seemed to stretch on forever, and there was no sign of life anywhere in it. But according to Shinobi, this was where they needed to be.
“So what now?” Galahad asked.
“Remember what he said for us to do when we got here.” Athena reminded him and the others. “Only Fluffs and I are to enter the forest. You and Ragnarok will have to wait here until it is appropriate.”
“Shouldn’t we at least have someone else to back us up?” Fluffs was worried. “What if something bad happens in there?”
“You and me have plenty of strength to take on anything in there.” She replied with confidence. Her fist glowed pink, indicating her Moonblast attack. Fluffs nodded weakly, remembering her Hurricane attack. The two looked back at Galahad and Ragnarok. The two nodded in agreement at the girls, and Athena and Fluffs turned and walked into the Forest of Darkness. Only a few meters in though, the two disappeared into the mist.
“I’m worried about them.” Galahad said.
“Don’t worry.” Ragnarok said. “They can handle anything in there.”
“But ‘what’ is in there?” Galahad asked. Ragnarok was about to reply, but realized that he didn’t have an answer. He only looked into the woods. Now he too, was worried.
Fluffs stuck close by Athena as they walked through the woods and mist. There was an eerie silence throughout the forest. All the trees were dark gray, no leaves on any of them, and the dirt was dry and dusty. It truly felt like she and Athena were the only living things in the entire forest.
“Keep you guard up.” Athena reminded her. “We don’t know for sure if we are truly alone here.”
Fluffs quickly looked around the area, making sure no one was following them. But with mist, it was hard to tell if there was anyone there. Though Athena had confidence, Fluffs was a nervous wreck. The pair continued on for a little ways more. Just then, a quiet voice could be heard coming from up ahead through the mist, causing Athena to stop in her tracks and Fluffs to dive behind her, clinging to the back of her shoulder.
“Do not come any further.” The voice said in an unsettling soothing female, tone. “Leave this place immediately.” Fluffs was terrified, but Athena had come too far to turn back.
“That is something I cannot do.” She called out.
“Why do you say that?” the voice asked slowly. Athena remembered what Shinobi had told her to say should she hear someone tell her to leave.
“I need help from you master.” She stated. The voice didn’t say anything. The eerie silence returned as Athena and Fluffs waited to see what would happen next. Fluffs ducked further behind Athena’s shoulder, but Athena didn’t even budge. Through the silence, footsteps could be heard. The footsteps were slow enough to indicate someone was walking toward them, but fast enough to indicate it was from a four-legged Pokemon. Athena stood firm as a figure could be seen approaching them. Fluffs was shaking in fear, and Athena braced herself, putting one foot behind the other, ready for anything. The figure emerged from the mist, revealing itself to be an Absol, the Disaster Pokemon. The Absol stood before Athena and Fluffs, her bright red eyes looking intently at the two Pokemon.
“Who told you about my master?” the Absol asked quizzically.
“Shinobi the Greninja.” Athena responded. The Absol nodded, understanding that it was Shinobi, someone she trusted.
“Very well. If Shinobi showed you here, then I suppose you can be trusted. My name is Yang.”
“A pleasure to meet you Yang. My name is Athena.” She pointed over her shoulder to the ball of cotton on her back. “And this is Fluffs.” Fluffs poked her head over Athena’s shoulder and looked at Yang, weakly waving at her. Yang simply nodded in understanding.
“You wish to see my master, yes? For what reason?”
“I will only state my reasons when I meet him.” Athena said. Yang looked at her.
“Of course. If that is the case, then I will lead you to him. Follow me.” she turned around and began to walk away from Athena and Fluffs. The Whimsicott floated to Athena’s side and the two followed the Absol further into the woods.
“Are you the only two that have come?” Yang asked.
“No.” Fluffs stated. “There are two others waiting outside of the forest.”
“Who are they?”
“A Gallade and Aegislash.” Athena answered. “We thought it would be in your master’s best interests if they stayed behind until it was safe for them to come in too.”
“Much appreciated,” the Absol gratefully said. “Pokemon that know fighting type moves would present a problem for my master.”
“What about Fairy Types?” Fluffs asked.
“Strangely, my master doesn’t seem concerned with Fairy Types at all.” Yang herself didn’t seem to understand. Fluffs and Athena smiled at each other, knowing that that was a point in their favor.
“What are you doing Yang!?” a loud voice cried from up ahead. Yang calmly stopped, but Athena and Fluffs jerked to a standstill from the sudden noise. “Why did you bring such Pokemon in here!?"
“They are not here to harm us Yin,” the Absol said, “Come out and don’t cause any problems.” A short time later, a quiet flapping sound could be heard approaching. And through the mist, a small Pidgey emerged, landing on a tree branch above the group. Athena and Fluffs both cocked their heads to the side in confusion.
“Wha….what?” Athena didn’t understand.
“Did that voice come from that Pidgey?” Fluffs asked.
“HOW DARE YOU SPEAK TO ME LIKE THAT!” the Pidgey shouted. And before anyone could react, a large column of fire shot out of the Pidgey’s mouth straight at Athena and Fluffs. Caught off guard, the two dove out of the way, landing behind a fallen tree trunk. The two looked up from behind the trunk at the Pidgey, whose beak still had fire seeping out.
“What the hell!?” Athena screamed. Fluffs checked her cotton frantically to make sure it hadn’t caught on fire.
“Yin, that is completely uncalled for!” Yang exclaimed to the Pidgey. “What will master say about this? Stop with the trickery.” The Pidgey huffed loudly at her, but complied. The Pidgey suddenly began to glow, similar to evolution, but it wasn’t. Parts of the Pidgey began to change before Athena’s and Fluffs’ eyes. The wings turned into arms with sharp claws, the legs grew longer and larger, its tail retreated, and a long mane grew from the back of its head. The glow dissipated, and the Pidgey was replaced with a menacing looking fox-like Pokemon, which glared at the two Fairy Types.
“So that Pidgey was a Zoroark?” Fluffs asked.
“That explains the Flamethrower I assume.” Athena said, walking out from behind the trunk.
“Calm down Yin,” Yang said to the Zoroark. The Illusion Fox Pokemon huffed again and turned her head away. Yang only shook her head. She turned toward Athena and Fluffs. “Allow me to clarify. This is my sister Yin. She can be a bit of a hothead, but she means well for the master.”
“A bit of a hothead?” Fluffs was agitated by Yin’s sudden attack. “She almost caught me on fire!” The Zoroark didn’t even look back.
“Alright alright. Yin, I am showing these two the way to the master. Please don’t attack them anymore.” Yang said to her sister.
“Why would the master want to even talk to these two Fairies?” Yin asked with disgust.
“They have important matters with him. Just let them go.” Yin sighed loudly.
“Fine!” She jumped from the branch and landed in front of Yang, then began walking forward away from her. Yang turned toward Athena and Fluffs and motioned for them to follow.
The group of four had been walking for what seemed like a very long time. It seemed like it because since Yin joined the group, no one was talking. She wore what seemed to be a permanent scowl on her face, so Athena and Fluffs knew that they shouldn’t try to talk to her. The group continued on until they reached a small clearing. Two boulders lay on the sides of the circular patch, which was surrounded my dense pockets of dead trees. Yin quickly jumped up on the left boulder, while Yang slowly climbed up onto the right one. Both Dark Types looked at Athena and Fluffs, who stood at the entrance of the clearing. Yang then looked at the center of the clearing and spoke.
“Master, these two Fairy Types wish to speak to you.” Athena and Fluffs looked at the center, but saw no one. Yin continued to look at the two, while Yang focused on the center. After a brief moment, a low male voice spoke up.
“What do they wish to speak about?” the voice asked. Yang turned and looked at Athena, indicating for her to speak. Athena awkwardly looked at the center and began to talk.
“Master of Yin and Yang, my name is Athena. I am from the Psychic Colony.” Yin’s and Yang’s heads perked up at this detail in surprise, but Athena continued uninterrupted, Fluffs looking on with wonder. “I come to you seeking help. I have been locked in a lifelong struggle with the Evil Type. They have caused so much pain and suffering for many Pokemon in this world, and I have been fighting them for a long time now. I have both defeated and killed several powerful Evil Type members, but I need your help to stop them once and for all. Please, will you help me?” Silence once more filled the air. Several seconds passed without any voice speaking up. Then, Yin’s and Yang’s heads jerked back to the center. Athena and Fluffs now saw something strange on the ground: a rippling shadow pulsating from the center.
“Looks like you found favor with him Gardevoir.” Yin spat out.
“Indeed you have Athena.” Yang added. From the ripple, a white smoke like structure began to emerge. Fluffs dove behind Athena once more in fear, but Athena remained motionless, her eyes began to shrink. The white structure flowed like smoke. As it rose, a red pointed collar emerged, followed by a body the color of pitch black. Once the figure fully emerged, a singular eye flashed open, bright blue. Yin and Yang bowed toward their master. Fluffs peered over Athena’s shoulder, and Athena stood in shock.
“You’re…..a Darkrai.” She stammered. The Pitch Black Pokemon only stared at her. He then spoke directly to her.
“Hello Athena. It is a pleasure to meet you. My name….is Nightmare.”