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As the entire volcano which Sootopolis is built on breaks off from the earthcrust and rises towards the skies, sea water rapidly drains away from the elevated piece of land and gushes into the big hole left behind by it.

Standing atop Regirock on the original southern border of the city, Sidney and Drake look up at the ascended volcano, and are astounded that the battle ground is now floating on thin air. On the north-western side, Phoebe and Glacia stand tall on Regice, and keep their stare as well at the skies above, wondering what could have happened inside Sootopolis.

Meanwhile, at the center of the historical city, Groudon and Kyogre remain stunned by the powerful globe of energy between them which interrupted their fight. Ruby and Courtney hop off Tororo and Swellow to land right in front of the Cave of Origin, and give a knowing nod to each other. With the Red Orb glowing in Ruby's hand and the Blue Orb shimmering in Courtney's, the two demand the titans to stop the battle, and to quietly return underground.

Yet, Groudon and Kyogre keep a hostile stare at each other, and Courtney grunts that the ancient creatures are so focused in their fight that they are totally oblivious to everything else around them. She states that their commands with the jewels are apparently not powerful enough, and proposes drawing the titans' attention with Pokémon attacks.

Ruby quickly orders Zuzu to deliver a muddywater, which hits Groudon on the side on its head, while Courtney releases her Ninetales to unleash a hyperbeam, which strikes at the jaw of Kyogre. Courtney points out that Groudon's spikey armour gives strong protection to its head and back, and tells Ruby to shift the aim at its stomach. Ruby does what he is told, and instantly sees the difference in effectiveness.

Courtney grins that Ruby has clearly grown much stronger compared with the time they fought each other at the Rusturf Tunnel, and Ruby attributes it to the intense training he received at the Mirage Island, the training which he received together with Sapphire. Stealing a glance at the Cave of Origin behind him, he remembers that it was there that he and Sapphire lent the powers of the Grand Meteor piece to blast the Red and Blue Orbs out of Maxie and Archie.

The boy's momentary shift of thought causes him to lose control of the Red Orb, and the jewel swiftly shoots into his body up his left arm, ripping apart his glove and sleeve and leaving Groudon's symbol glowing on his shoulder. Courtney hollers that one must not lose focus at any time while controlling the orbs, otherwise their energy will backflow easily. However, her concern for Ruby affects her own concentration, and the Blue Orb quickly shoots up her right arm, stripping it bare of clothing while forming Kyogre's symbol.

Ruby wonders if Courtney is alright, and the Team Magma admin snickers at herself for making the same mistake. She remarks that they might now be able to execute a stronger command with the orbs assimilated into their bodies, and tells Ruby to try one more time. The two each holds up the arm being infiltrated by the jewels, and once again orders Groudon and Kyogre to stop. This time, the globe of energy between the titans swiftly expands to envelope them, and the look imediately goes blank on both Pokémon' face.

Ruby gasps in disbelief that they have succeeded, but Courtney isn't so sure. Suddenly, Groudon and Kyogre shift their gaze towards the Cave of Origin, and begin charging towards Ruby and Courtney. Courtney exclaims that the titans seem to have noticed their existence finally, but have unfortunately directed their fury at them as well. She hurriedly pulls Ruby away as Groudon delivers a swipe with its claws, and manages to narrowly evade the attack. The blow lands on Zuzu instead, and the Swampert struggles to prevent itself from being squashed.

Ruby commands an endeavor, and Zuzu uses all its might to flip the land titan over and sends it crashing into Kyogre. The boy then asks if Courtney is alright, but isn't aware that Kyogre is about to ambush him from behind. Courtney spots the swinging flipper just in time, and quickly pushes Ruby out of the way. However, the sea titan's strike crushes part of the Cave of Origin's entrance, and the heavy rubbles tumble down onto Courtney's back.

Ruby yells out in horror, and rushes over to check on the young woman, but then Groudon delivers another unexpected swipe, and slams him down against the ground, rendering him immobile. Courtney grits her teeth in pain and frustration about their failure to completely calm the titans, and wonders if it is because she isn't one of the chosen 'commanders' of the orbs.

Just then, something fast moving appears in the sky above, and draws the attention of both Groudon and Kyogre. Courtney looks up to see a giant green dragon, and recognizes it as Rayquaza. The creature stares down at Groudon and Kyogre, and the two titans quickly leave Ruby and Courtney behind, and get into combative stances.

Freed from the restraints of Groudon, Ruby runs over to help Courtney out of the rubbles, and wants to know the identity of the dragon like creature which appears as if it came through the fissures of the sky. Courtney explains that it is the third ancient titan, also known as the sky Pokémon, Rayqauza, and Ruby is astonished at what he hears. Courtney remarks that Rayquaza's existence has been kept a secret to many, and silently thinks to herself all the inside information she has found out at the Mossdeep Space Center.

With a shriek, Rayquaza swoops down from the skies, and coils its long body around Kyogre. Groudon charges forward to attack, but Rayquaza swiftly holds it back by clawing at its head. Ruby watches the deadly battle between the three Pokémon unfold, and gets increasingly worried with their each move. Kyogre, Groudon and Rayquaza are the top class entities of the sea, land and sky respectively. He recalls how destructive the fight already has been between the land and sea titans, and couldn't imagine what will happen now that the sky titan is also involved.

Keeping her gaze at a silhouette standing on the head of Rayquaza, Courtney silently wonders if Ruby knows who it is that brought the sky Pokémon to the final battle ground…

Thanks To Coronis For Writing this for us




261: The Last Great Battle II!


Volume 22