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Ash and co are still headed for Fallarbor Town, when suddenly, as they’re walking in the woods, a wild Zangoose runs up to them from behind, and stops. It looks really mad, angry, and hungry. At first they think about trying to get involved, but the Pokedex tells them that Zangoose is rather dangerous. Suddenly, a bigger Zangoose comes up, and starts to actually speak to the smaller one. Then when it turns around, they realize it’s actually not a Zangoose, but a boy in a Zangoose costume. Then Ash recognizes him as their old friend Nicolai!
They say their hellos again as they have a picnic, and Nicolai tells them that he actually challenged the Petalburg Gym leader Norman who he longed to challenge, but he lost. However, they were nice enough to have him over for dinner, and him and his wife Caroline told him about May and Max, whom he met last time, and they told him where they were headed, so he came to meet them. However, they get embarrassed when he mentions how Norman called May a beginner, but Nicolai just pats her on the back. Then, Nicolai tells them that he’s gotten stronger throughout his journey, so Ash challenges him to a battle reffed by Brock.
Nicolai does his usual pose, and gets into a Marshtomp costume, and sends out Marshtomp! Apparently his Mudkip evolves. Ash’s Pokedex tells him that unlike Mudkip, Marshtomp is partly Ground type. Since Electric attacks wouldn’t work, Ash uses Treecko instead of Pikachu. Nicolai has Marshtomp start with a Water Gun, but Ash has Treecko dodge it and use Quick Attack. Then, Marshtomp starts to rapidly change direction of the Water Gun, which confuses and distracts Treecko from his Quick Attack. Then Marshtomp hits Treecko hard with a Mud Shot, knocking him over. Treecko almost looks knocked out, but he slowly starts to get up. Nicolai decides to try have Marshtomp use Iron Tail while Treecko is getting up, but it manages to get up and use a Bullet Seed, just in time to hit Marshtomp and stop the Iron Tail. A Pound from Treecko knocks Marshtomp out.
Meanwhile, Team Rocket watch the battle from behind the bushes and plot to steal Pikachu during the battle, as usual. As they watch, Jessie sends out Seviper to watch with them, and plans to have Seviper make the first move…
Back on the battlefield, Nicolai returns Marshtomp to its Pokeball, takes off his Marshtomp costume, replaces it with the Zangoose costume as he sends out his own Zangoose. Nicolai tells Zangoose to use Swords Dance, and it’s just about to do so—when suddenly, it stops dead and refuses to battle. Nicolai asks what’s wrong, but Zangoose just walks away, and suddenly disappears into the bushes… and the next thing they know, within a split second Team Rocket run out of the bushes screaming, and Zangoose and Seviper fly out, looking totally beat up, and the next thing they know, they find themselves glaring at each other in anger, in the middle of the field. Ash asks TR what they’re doing there, but before they get a chance to say their motto, Zangoose and Seviper let out fierce roars. Brock then explains that Zangoose and Seviper are really dangerous species, especially when near each other. They’ve always been fierce enemies and rivals, and now that their practically in the same field, they’re both gonna fight and not give up, and there’s nothing they can do about it but watch the fight.
Zangoose and Seviper both start Tackling each other, and land back to back. Before they continue, Meowth jumps in and yells at Seviper that it was supposed to help them capture Pikachu. But Seviper doesn’t care anymore, he just whacks Meowth out of the way with his tail, sending him rolling down the hill with Team Rocket. It’s hopeless now, all Seviper cares about is defeating Zangoose, and there’s no way to stop that.
While TR land in the water, Zangoose and Seviper keep wrestling, and Seviper whacks Zangoose with its tail, and then Wraps itself around him. As Zangoose desperately tries to get out of Seviper’s grip, they topple over, roll down the hill, and land in the water as well. Nicolai and the others start chasing them as they float down the river, and try to tell Zangoose to continue the battle with Ash, but of course, now that Seviper’s around, Zangoose doesn’t care anymore about that. Suddenly, Seviper hits Zangoose hard with a Poison Tail, and Zangoose seems to have fainted, but it continues floating. However, Seviper is still rather angry, and looks like it’s about to attack Zangoose again—but Ash manages to stop the fight by sending out Corphish, and using its Bubblebeam to distract Seviper, and then carry Zangoose to shore. Zangoose seems to be hurt really badly by that Poison Tail, so they examine it.
As Nicolai lets Zangoose rest on the blanket, Brock prepares a nice soup to help cure it. After a little trouble, Nicolai gives Zangoose a spoonful, but it still seems to need a rest. Seviper really hurt it badly…
As Team Rocket sit nearby, wondering what happened to Seviper, it suddenly jumps out of the river and lands near them. Without thinking, James yells at it and asks why it didn’t help capture Pikachu. Just then, James immediately realizes that was the wrong thing to do, as he notices Seviper’s anger. Before it attacks him, he kneels and pleads for forgiveness as usual and apologizes, and Seviper decides to let it slide. Then, Meowth asks Seviper if Nicolai’s Zangoose distracted him, and he nods. Then Meowth wonders why Sevipers cares about some random Zangoose that he’s never even met before. Jessie then chimes in and says that she can tell it’s a fierce hate grudge between the two, as she knows from experience, because she feels the exact same way about Cassidy… just thinking about her makes her wanna kill someone. So Jessie, being sympathetic, decides to take Seviper’s side and help defeat Zangoose…
Meanwhile, Ash and Nicolai do some Pokedex research for some info on Seviper. They also realize it’s a very dangerous Pokemon, and then realize why Zangoose and Seviper are rivals and enemies. But they kind of find that hard to believe, so they decide to test it out. Nicolai gets into a Zangoose costume, and Ash gets into a Seviper costume. They glare at each other, act angry, and even partly feel angry. Then, they start to run at each other, and Seviper-Ash uses its tail to knock Nicolai-Zangoose down. Nicolai cries out in pain, Ash then realizes Seviper’s strength. Nicolai-Zangoose then gets up, and uses the claw to slash at Seviper-Ash. They both then get mad, and start wrestling each other. May then gets worried that Ash and Nicolai might hate each other, but Brock says that this is just a simulation, there’s nothing to worry about. But noticing their forms and their body, it almost makes them feel angry. Suddenly, out of May’s backpack pops Skitty from it’s Pokeball! May gets confused for a second, but decides to just let Skitty watch and enjoy. However, Skitty just wanted to play, and it sees Ash in a Seviper costume, and starts running toward him, trying to playfully hug him, but Ash isn’t interested in playing with Skitty, he wants to continue fighting Nicolai-Zangoose! But Skitty doesn’t give up, she keeps chasing Ash. May then tries to grab Skitty, and misses. Just then, in the midst of this chaos, they hear in the distance a cry of a REAL Seviper. Zangoose then gets up from the blanket, as if nothing happened, and starts running towards the sound…
Apparently Jessie is using a microphone attached from her to Seviper, and a radar dish, and yelling stuff there, which comes out in Seviper-ese. She’s calling Zangoose for a fight, to make Seviper happy once and for all. Their plan works, Zangoose approaches with Nicolai and co, and he and Jessie prepare to battle! Jessie sends in Seviper, and Nicolai and Zangoose are about to make their first move, when suddenly, the arm snatches Pikachu, and puts in a cage, as usual… . Next thing they know, Zangoose and Seviper start fighting on their own, again! But before they can do anything, as James and Meowth start to take off, Jessie refuses to come with them. As the mistress of grudges, and Seviper’s trainer, she’s NOT going to miss the opportunity to help Seviper defeat Zangoose. Since that’s the case, and Assuming Zangoose also wants to stay, Nicolai decides to stay as well and fight Jessie, while Ash and the others chase James and Meowth.
As Ash and co chase them, James sends out Cacnea, who starts by hugging him, but then using Pin Missile, stopping them. Then they say the motto, but Meowth says Jessie’s lines instead, making it a little hard. Cacnea then uses a Sandstorm, creating a raging sand tornado sending Ash flying, and landing on them, knocking the Pikachu cage out of their hands and way out of reach…
Seviper and Zangoose are still strong and fighting their hardest. Seviper tries a Bite, which Zangoose easily dodges, followed by a dodge of a Poison Tail attempt by Seviper. Now, both of them seem nearly out of energy, but still willing to fight. Just then, the Pikachu cage lands right in the middle of the battle field, and everyone else approaches. Then they start to fight over it, and Wobbuffet gets it, then everyone starts chasing Wobbuffet. Nicolai then tries to remember how they handled the incident of Skitty chasing Ash, but then Jessie yells and everyone to stop. Wobbuffet stops, and Ash swipes the cage from his hands, and the only way to end this now is to finish the battle.
Jessie has Seviper charge at Zangoose, but Zangoose is too fast. Seviper keeps chasing it around the field, but Nicolai tries the strategy of using Zangoose’s speed to his advantage, and trying to have it run so fast it ends up behind Seviper, and then attacks it. But they’re both pretty fast, and then May remembers how Skitty kept chasing Seviper, and then realizes that it didn’t want to play. It thought Ash was a Seviper, and being of the cat family as well, it wanted to attack him. Anyways, as they continue to chase each other, Nicolai thinks fast, has Zangoose use Crush Claw, knocking out Seviper and winning the match!
Nicolai congratulates Zangoose, and Jessie, to everyone’s surprise, actually shows emotion, and congratulates Seviper as well for putting up a good battle. But James and Meowth are still angry, and not done yet. James sends out Cacnea, hitting them all with its Pin Missile, but a Thunder from Pikachu sends them all blasting off. Nicolai congratulates Zangoose on its great battle skills, and agrees to let it rest after that showdown with Seviper. However, Ash and Nicolai never finished their match, so they decide to continue it. Having Marshtomp and Zangoose out, Nicolai sends out good old Zigzagoon (and of course changes into his costume as well)! Ash sends out Pikachu to battle it… and apparently we don’t see the end of the match, but it’s nice to have a civil battle after the confrontation with Seviper!
Thanks To Spinazak For Writing this for us
324: ZigZag Zangoose!
324: Zangoose & Seviper! Rival Confrontation!
Ash & Co. Meet Up With Nicolai Again