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At Nimbasa City's newly constructed Gear Station, Black and White walk up to a subway train in the company of Baker Chris, and see that a battle is about to begin inside the cabin. Black gasps in surprise as he recognizes the burly man with flaming red hair as Alder, the Champion of the Unova region, and wonders why he is fighting Marshal of the Elite 4 in an underground train.

At that moment, the battle begins, and Marshal orders his Mienshao to lash out with a kick, which Alder's Accelgor adeptly evades. Black states that Marshal is using the martial arts Pokemon, Mienshao, while Alder is commanding the shell out Pokemon, Accelgor, and watches as the two engages in a close-up combat.

Marshal gets Mienshao to strike with Pound, but Alder has Accelgor perform a Double Team, which distracts Mienshao and causes its attack to miss. Black exclaims that Accelgor moves just like a ninja, and Baker Chris agrees that it is a battle between ninja arts and martial arts. Black can see that Mienshao's main weapon as its long arms, but Chris corrects him and say they are not arms but fur on its forearms which it could extend freely to strike at its opponents.

As if to prove her point, Mienshao hurls both of its forearms towards Accelgor, and manages to restrain it with the fur. Black gasps that Accelgor has been captured, and watches as Mienshao suspends it over one of the handle bars in the cabin. He exclaims that the victory seems decided now, and Chris grins that Accelgor has indeed won, which causes Black to jump in surprise and confusion.

Marshal bows in gratitude to his mentor as Mienshao releases Accelgor, and the Elite 4 member sighs that this gives him a streak of 2 wins and 1076 losses. Alder queries that it should be 1077 losses, and Marshal quickly checks on the crosses he made for every defeat on the underside of his jacket. Alder laughs that he was just joking, and pats Marshal on the shoulder.

Outside, Baker Chris explains that Alder and Marshal are mentor and disciple to one other, and says although the two are usually travelling around for their personal training, they occasionally meet and will almost always have a battle with each other when they do, regardless of where they are.

Alder and Marshal exit from the train, and the Unova Champion complains that the Mayor still hasn't arrived. He isn't too happy that he is kept waiting when he has come specifically to comment on his battle system, and says he has much to tell the supervisor. He decides to take a walk outside, and Marshal greets him off with a bow.

At that moment, Black realizes that he still hasn't figured out why Alder was the winner of the battle, and eagerly asks Baker Chris about it. Chris is surprised that Black didn't see it, and Marshal, having overheard them, walks over to explain that he lost to Acid Spray, and attack which involves spitting out a highly corrosive fluid that could melt the target.

The Elite 4 member explains that although the attack was supposed to drench the foe's entire body to deal massive damage, his mentor only had Accelgor fire a single droplet of it. Nevertheless, when this droplet landed on Mienshao, the victory was already decided, because if Mienshao had been hit with the full attack, it would have fainted right away. His mentor was simply being kind, not wanting to cause unnecessary damage to the Pokemon, and the battle fully demonstrated how much his strength differed from his mentor.

Just then, Marshal has a better look of Black, and realizes that he was the boy he encountered the night before. He assumes that the girl standing behind him is the one who passed out last night, and feels glad to see that she has come around. Black hurriedly explains to White that Marshal was the one who rescued her and carried her to him, and White expresses her gratitude to the man.

Black then requests to know if Marshal saw anything when he found his president beneath the Ferris Wheel, whether there were any people, Pokemon, or just anything that he recalls seeing. However, before the Elite 4 member could respond, the Nimbasa Mayor arrives at the scene in a rush, panting to catch his breath and voicing out his apologies for being late. He feels sorry to keep Marshal waiting, especially when the man has taken time to come and give advice to their battle system, but explains that he has been busy because the producer of the Pokemon Musical suddenly vanished since last night.

In that instant, the Mayor spots White, and lets out a cry of shock and anger. He demands to know what she is doing there, where she has been, why she did not turn up at the celebration party of the opening ceremony, and most of all, why she was a no show at the event hall today when they start allowing public participation. Black cuts in to calm down the Mayor, and slowly explains what exactly happened.

After hearing the whole story, Marshal is slightly astonished by the mental trauma the girl has gone through, and the Mayor finds that he couldn't really blame her. He decides to forget about it, and wonders where Alder has gone. Marshal explains that his mentor is currently outside, and the group moves out to the front porch of the Gear Station building.

There, they discover that Alder is having a wrestle game with his Bouffalant. As they charge towards each other, Alder attempts to grab the horns of Bouffalant, but the bash buffalo Pokemon wiggles hard, and finally throws its trainer backwards with a thrust. The two then break out in laughter, and Alder states that he is really getting old. Around them, wild Pokemon start to gather, some from the bushes and some from the river nearby. A Garbodor approaches Alder, and the burly man realizes that it wants to play as well. A Sigilyph and Gothita quickly chime in, and Alder laughs that everyone gets their turn.

Black watches the scene in amazement, and is surprised that so many wild Pokemon have appeared. Marshal laughs that it has always been like this, and believes that his mentor's gentle nature probably appeased and attracted them. He points out that Alder plays with both his own Pokemon and wild Pokemon at the same time, and says the man usually just wants to have fun with them. Indeed, all the wild Pokemon wear happy looks on their faces as Alder wrestles with them, and White finds herself amused and moved by what she sees.

Marshal tells the Mayor that his mentor will not be returning for some time if he is playing like that, and the Mayor feels troubled. The Elite 4 member offers to be the one to comment on his battle system instead, since he has tried out everything when he waited, and the Mayor sincerely thanks him for his help. Marshal turns to Black, and says the answer to his previous question is he only saw the girl and the Servine when he found them, nothing else. However, he believes that Black and White may be interested in the battle facility as well, and invites them to come along.

Returning underground, the Mayor starts explaining that the whole system is named the Battle Subway, which is the newest battle attraction that goes hand in hand with the Pokemon Musical to reestablish Nimbasa's status as the center of entertainment. As the name implies, it is a battle system which utilizes the extensive underground tunnel network of Unova, where special trains will run and hold tournament battles on them. Each train is made up of seven cabins, each cabin serving as an individual battlefield, and challengers will fight against a succession of 7 trainers to complete 1 cycle.

Marshal states that the 7-trainer-per-cycle rule is also adopted by many battle facilities in other regions, and the Mayor admits that they decided to use the same regulation after doing extensive research on how other regions' battle system works. Marshal slides open the train door to enter the cabin where he just battled his mentor, and remarks that to be truthful, the area is really narrow with a low ceiling, and the handles, seats and poles all pose as obstacles. On top of that, since the train is moving, the battleground is extremely unsteady and restricting. However, he thinks that it actually adds to the challenge, testing a trainer's skills in utilizing the surroundings and adopting strategies accordingly.

The Mayor is glad to hear Marshal's compliment, and states that although some are still under construction, 8 lines are planned in total, 6 of which are currently ready to use. They include single battles, double battles, multi battles, and each category will have two lines, one for beginners and one for advanced trainers. For each line, after a certain number of cycles, the challenger will fight the Subway Bosses, and at that moment, two identical looking man wearing captain attires, one in black and one in white, show up to salute the group. The black one introduces himself as Ingo, and the White one states his name as Emmet. The Mayor grins that he specifically recruited the men for this facility, and says they are both very skilled in battling.

Marshal thinks what they need now is a normal trainer who could test out the system, and muses that it may be fate that Black is there. He turns to the boy, and asks if he would like to go on a simulation ride before the Battle Subway officially opens. Black instantly jumps at the chance with enthusiasm, but before he manages to answer, he suddenly recalls how Pokemon battling has hurt White, and it will be extremely insensitive of him to take up the offer now. Troubled by his conflicting thoughts, Black grabs his head in agony, and wonders what to do. He eventually cries that he cannot do it, and runs off with a frantic look on his face, much to Marshal's surprise.

Black escapes back onto the porch, and pants to catch his breath, feeling like throwing up. In that instant, he hears White walking up to him, and the girl asks if he is worried about her. Black quickly denies, and says he turned down the offer simply because they have many other things to do. He then spots Servine, and demands to know why it is still there.

White ponders in silence for a moment, and turns to look at Alder, who is still playing with the wild Pokemon. She remarks that this guy Black called the Champion seems to be having a lot of fun, and it appears that it doesn't concern him whether a Pokemon is strong or beautiful. She wonders if this is what understanding means, and Black feels confused by her words.

Focusing her gaze at a distance, White states that she hasn't given up on her dream, which she still thinks lies in entertainment, something that is unlikely to change. She still wants to raise Pokemon with acting talents, and give them the chance to shine in the spotlight on stage. However, she has been contemplating on what N said as well, about how she did not allow Gigi to battle, how she was oblivious to its feelings, and how she failed to listen to its voice. Whatever Gigi thought and felt in the Ferris Wheel cabin, it was something genuine, but she escaped because she could not accept it. She couldn't help but wonder, what Gigi is doing now, and whether it is currently immersed in the joy of battling and the thrill of winning.

Letting out a sigh, White puts on a bitter grin, and remarks that it might be for the better. She points out that Gigi has tried at both entertainment and battling, and it now has the option to choose what it really wants to pursue, which she thinks is for the better. She grins that deep inside, she is still convinced that Gigi to return to entertainment some day, and Black is left speechless by her words.

White then makes an astonishing decision, and says she would like to give the Battle Subway a try, causing Black to gap his mouth wide in shock…

Thanks To Coronis For Writing this for us



027: VS Accelgor!

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