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The episode begins with explaining everything that happened in the Blackthorn gym series up till now. It then shows Ash and Clair on separate sides of a huge lake with floating platforms spread around it. This is to be the battlefield for Ash and Clair. It is a three on three match with no time limit. The battle then begins. Ash pulls out a pokeball and sends out Snorlax. Misty and Brock are surprised, and Ash comments that he had it transported. Clair releases Kingdra.
Clair orders Kingdra to use agility. Kingdra races across the water at full speed. It then tries to use sift on Snorlax. It flies back a little but gets back up right away, surprising Clair. It looks like Snorlax’s big bulk can withstand Kingdra’s attacks! Snorlax sends Kingdra flying with its belly. Kingdra gets up, still raring for battle. Clair tells it to use hydro pump. Snorlax just lets the attack hit him, which it seems to like, and the attack is ineffective. Ash is so happy that he is winning. Kingdra tries again with agility, but Snorlax just takes the beatings. Kingdra tries this strategy a couple more times, but Snorlax gets tired of it and ice punches Kingdra, very hard, and very direct. Kingdra flies back into the water, and faints. Ash is shocked the Snorlax used ice punch. He gets real excited now.
Clair recalls Kingdra. She congratulates it for a job well done. She then pulls out her second pokeball and releases Gyarados! Finally, Gyarados in an actual match! Snorlax seems to be a little tired. Clair orders Gyarados to use a series of dragon breaths, which hit Snorlax, causing it to tire more. It is exhausted. After a few more dragon breaths, Clair orders Gyarados to use hyper beam. Gyarados charges it u and releases it straight for Snorlax. Snorlax is too exhausted to get out of the way, and is slammed right in the face by the beam. Snorlax stumbles a bit, then falls, fainted. Ash nervously recalls it. He knows the right pokemon to send against Gyarados. He tells Pikachu to get in there. Gyarados goes in to tackle Pikachu, but Pikachu uses agility to get out of the way. Ash tells Pikachu to use thunderbolt, but before it can get it off, a dragon breath smashes into it, causing Pikachu an injury and it starts to tire. Gyarados then tries to finish it off with a hydro pump, which misses Pikachu as it uses agility out of the way. Pikachu is getting tired. As Gyarados goes in for another attack, Pikachu uses agility and races up to Gyarados’s face. It smirks then uses a massive thunder, not stopping till Gyarados it exhausted. Pikachu falls to the platform, tired but not out. Gyarados seems ready for more, but soon, its exhausted ness gets the better of it, and it collapses. Ash jumps for joy.
Clair returns Gyarados to its pokeball and congratulates it for a good job. She then releases Dragonair. Ash is worried. Pikachu is really tired. It slowly gets up and uses thunderbolt, but Dragonair dives under the water. Clair orders a hyper beam, which comes out of the water and smashes into Pikachu, taking it out. Ash sadly recalls Pikachu, and tells it that it did a great job, but now he needs power! Misty and Brock know what pokemon he will choose next. Ash sends Charizard into battle! Clair expected that for a while. Charizard goes in to attack Dragonair.
Clair tells it to dive under the water. This gives Dragonair a huge advantage. From under the water, Dragonair spins to create a massive twister, which bursts out of the water and smashes into Charizard. Charizard, however, is not really affected by it. Ash is surprised that it has become so strong. Clair then orders Dragonair to fly out of the water and make this a face to face battle. Dragonair flies out using its ear-like wings. It goes in for an iron tail. Charizard dodges and comes back to grab the tail before the attack can finish. With Dragonair caught in his hands, Ash orders a seismic toss. Charizard starts to spin around the earth like its normal seismic toss, and is about to throw Dragonair when it uses thunderbolt. Charizard is hit bad, and it releases Dragonair, who flies away. Charizard shakes it off and flies toward Dragonair. Dragonair then tries to use another iron tail. Charizard grabs it again, but before it can use seismic toss, it is hit by another thunderbolt. This is tried once more. Charizard grabs Dragonair. It uses fire spin around it, which traps Dragonair. Charizard then goes into the fire spin too! It grabs Dragonair and prepares for a seismic toss. Ash and Clair look nervously at the fire spin, seeing which pokemon will triumph. Suddenly, Dragonair flies down and smashes into the ground. Charizard flies from the flames, roaring with victory. Clair orders Dragonair to get up. It tries, but collapses again. Ash is so happy. He jumps up and down. Clair walks up to Ash and tells him that he put up the best match she has ever been in. He thanks her. She then pulls out the Rising Badge and hands it to Ash, who says his usual and Pikachu jumps for joy.
Back at the Dragon Cave, Team Rocket enters slowly. They approach the Dragon fang, but see Liza and Charla. Liza seems mad and Team Rocket is frightened. Charla goes in and sends them blasting off again. Liza then returns to the gym to find that Ash has won the Rising Badge. She also congratulates him. Clair then explains that Ash should head to Mt. Silver, where he can prepare for the Johto League. Ash thanks her. He then looks at Charizard, who is by Charla. Ash walks up to it, thanks it, and tells it to be good for Liza. Liza is surprised, but Ash knows that is where Charizard belongs. Liza, Charla, and Charizard then take off. Ash waves goodbye to his old friend. Ash decides to stay at in Blackthorn for one more day so Clair can explain about the league.
256: Better Eight Than Never
256: Blackthorn City Gym! The Final Badge
Ash beats Clair in his match and gets his Risingbadge
Ash Charizard head's back to the Valley