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At the Battle Arcade, Platinum gasps in horror as Dahlia states that she will use Platinum's Pokemon, while Platinum will use hers. The girl remains motionless in a state of shock, and finds it hard to accept that she will need to attack her own Pokemon. On the other hand, Dahlia seems hard bothered, and hums the line 'que sera sera' with a light-hearted tone as she ushers the girl towards Togekiss, Medicham and Ludicolo while she steps to the side of Empoleon, Rapidash and Lopunny

Looker himself feels astounded and overwhelmed by the cruelness of this panel event, and remembers how close and deeply bonded Platinum is with her Pokemon, how she would handle them with care all the time, groom them and feed them almost on a daily basis. It will be hard if not impossible for the girl to attack her own Pokemon, and Looker cannot start to imagine how the girl is going to handle this.

In that instant, another powerful earthquakes rumbles across entire Frontier, and throws Looker off his feet, causing the man to tumble down the stairs. The international police officer is certain that it originated from Stark Mountain again, and frets about what he should do. Platinum sees the frustrated look on the man's face, and after a moment of hesitation, states out loud that he should leave her alone and go ahead to the volcano.

Looker responds to Platinum's statement with a surprised look, and the girl points out that though difficult, she has no choice but to comply with the panel's team switch event as it is the result of the roulette run, which is a responsibility and consequence that she must bear for partaking in this facility challenge. She believes that they should split up their tasks, with Looker heading to Stark Mountain to investigate upon Team Galactic's action while she continues her facility challenge to collect information on the Distortion World.

With shaking hands, the girl forces a smile to assure Looker that she will be alright, and turns to Togekiss, Medicham and Ludicolo, hoping that they will give their best in her in this upcoming battle against the Frontier Brain. She informs Dahlia that she is ready for the challenge, and the Arcade Star seems impressed by her strong mind in facing such unexpected adverse conditions. Dahlia states that she shall feel no concern as well in that case, and assumes command over Platinum's three Pokemon.

Looker finds himself torn at the difficult decision, but rationalizes that Platinum is right. Wishing the girl good luck, he takes out his Galactica Jet to go airboune again, and tells Platinum to keep on with her facility challenges even if he fails to return. With that, the man departs from the Battle Arcade and vanishes into the sky, just as the Game Corner Manager and Mecha Starly call for the commencement of the battle.

Platinum sends out Togekiss as her first Pokemon, and Dahlia makes her pick on Lopunny. Platinum reads from Togekiss's status screen that the jubilee Pokemon knows the attacks Air Slash, Aura Sphere, Psychic and Hyper Beam, and knows that the fighting type move will do the most super effective damage on Lopunny. She begins to order an Aura Sphere, but when Lopunny's slightly startled face comes into sight, she immediately hesitates, giving Dahlia the chance to attack first and call for a Focus Blast from the rabbit Pokemon.

Turning its face away, Lopunny fires off the move, which hits Togekiss square-chest and faints it in one hit. This catches both Platinum and Lopunny by surprise, and the two begin to fret and panic, feeling lost as to what they should do. Dahlia remarks that this battle is giving her the weirdest vibe ever, and says no one seems to be attacking seriously on either side. She hums that trainers may have trouble facing their Pokemon and Pokemon may have trouble facing their trainers, but she is certainly not one who has issues with it, for que sera sera, it is simply a match.

Switching in Empoleon just as Platinum sends out Ludicolo, Dahlia remarks that she is always able to battle with full strength even when using other people's Pokemon, and orders a Drill Peck from the king penguin. Empoleon unleashes the attack despite its uneasiness, and rams right into the body of Ludicolo. Mecha Starly comments that it is a critical hit, and the Game Corner Manager points out that the situation looks bad for the challenger. While the Frontier Brain has no problem having full-on mode in the battle, the challenger is obviously having hesitation that hinders her actions. Perhaps, the goddess of victory will finally abandon the challenger who has had overwhelming success in her Arcade challenge so far, and give her blessings to the Brain's side.

Dahlia and Platinum continue switch between Pokemon in the match, but apparently, Platinum is only taking the defensive role while Dahlia keeps attacking. The Manager wonders if the challenger will decide to retire and surrender, but Platinum firmly rejects the idea upon hearing the question. Mecha Starly and the Manager are not convinced that she could go on, and fear that she will need to redo her challenge. Their words seem to make Platinum snap out of her hesitation, and the girl begins to seriously contemplate on her current situation.

Right from the beginning, her intention is clear. As early as possible, she wishes to find out more about the Distortion World. In fact, not only to find out, but she wishes to go to the Distortion World, in order to help the two people whom she must rescue. Mecha Starly overhears the girl talking to herself, and feels confused about what she is saying. Platinum states that the two people she seeks is definitely at the Distortion World, which is why she has come to the Battle Zone where she could find powerful trainers and obtain information from them. For that reason, she must not lose, even if her opponents are her very own Pokemon.

Having made her mind up, the girl orders a Waterfall from Ludicolo, and the super effective attack manages to inflict considerable damage on Rapidash, sending it tumbling backwards. Platinum then looks straight into the eyes of the fire horse as it struggles to get back on its feet, and knows that it is suffering from pain and agony. However, she cannot have any mercy, which is why she hopes that Rapidash, Empoleon and Lopunny will show no mercy either even though she is their opponent. Should they fail at the this final match, all their effort at the Arcade so far will go waste, and they may miss out on the chance to find out the means to get to the Distortion World.

Platinum's words cause her three Pokemon to realize their situation, and their hesitation quickly falls away. She then turns to Medicham, and recalls that it has gained the ability to see the aura of its opponents by honing its mind through starvation. She seeks its help in reading the aura of Empoleon, Rapidash and Lopunny, and feels glad when the meditate Pokemon assures her that the three are displaying an aura with a strong will to fight. Finally ready for a real battle, Platinum calls Medicham forward, who immediately engages Lopunny in a close-up combat.

Later, at Stark Mountain, Looker has arrived at the cave which leads to the interior of the volcano. He notices the rubbles and fallen boulders all around him, and sees that part of the tunnel has even caved in. Walking into the darkness ahead, he calls out for Buck, but his voice is quickly lost in the hollowness of the deep cave. He decides to use gadget 9 of the International Police Arms, the Loudful Speaker, and yells out Buck's name through the device. Instantly, his amplified voice causes a boom in the cave, and shatters a pile of fallen boulders in front of him, but not before throwing the man off his feet and sending him crashing onto his back.

The international police officer holds his head as he sits up, and gasps in horror when he sees an injured Buck sprawled across the boulders which he has just shattered. He rushes up to check on the boy, who greets Looker with a weak grin, feeling ashamed at his own condition. The red haired boy remembers saying not wanting to be bossed around by Looker, but it appears that he has ended up needing his help instead.

Buck points to his Claydol who is lying nearby, and Looker hurries over to see it covered in tatters and scratches. He gasps in shock at how badly it was wounded, and wonders if it was caused by another Pokemon. Buck replies with a nod, and says it has been his biggest and worst failure ever. Yet, the problem didn't lie in the unmatched strength in a Pokemon battle. Rather, it was because he has had an unexpected misunderstanding.

Right before Buck entered the cave of Stark Mountain, he learnt that the volcano holds a treasure known as the Magma Stone. It made him think that perhaps the enemy wasn't after Heatran, but after this Magma Stone instead. With that in mind, he ventured deeper and deeper into the cave while trying to lose the villainous team that was trailing after him, and eventually came to the chamber that housed the treasure. Hoping to protect it and hide it in safety, he attempted to take the Magma Stone with him. However, the moment he lifted the red-glowing rock, an incredible wave of energy was unleashed, which shook the entire Stark Mountain and caused the tunnels to cave in.

Looker rationalizes that it must be the first earthquake which they felt at the Battle Arcade, and Buck goes on to say that the instant it happened, he realized that the Magma Stone was placed in the chamber to seal off some kind of powerful force. A voice suddenly comes on behind Looker to state that what Buck said is exactly the truth, and that the second earthquake was a result of Heatran's awakening, caused by it making it first step as it broke out from its seal.

The international police officer bolts around to see an old purple-haired man wearing a lab coat and a uniform bearing the Team Galactic symbol, and gasps in bewilderment when he spots the creature behind him, a giant four-legged being that has metallic parts on its face and limbs, with a reddish brown body that appears to be partially melted in spots.

Thumping in fists on the ground in regret, Buck mourns that he has released Heatran right in front of the enemy, awakening it from its seal right for the enemy who were trying to get their hands on it after all…

(Original Japanese Jokes)
There are no jokes or Manzai in this chapter.

Thanks To Coronis For Writing this for us



424: VS Empoleon


Volume 39