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Ash and co. have finally arrived in Silver Town, where the league tournament takes place. He starts by healing his Pokemon at the center. Brock searches his backpack for the guidebook on the Tournament, just as who is to appear but Gary. Ash is surprised to find that Gary is also participating in the league, but Gary does his usual act, bragging about how he already finished registering. He keeps going on and on, as Ash gets angrier and angrier… and uses his secret weapon comeback about making it further in the indigo league. Gary, realizing he has nothing to say, just walks off. Misty and Brock are impressed at Ash’s courage, and wish Ash the best of luck! Later, they go shopping, and in one of the shops they happen to meet Charles Goodshow from before! They talk a bit, glad to see each other again, and he says he heard Ash was going to be in the Silver Tournament, and expects a great battle!

Meanwhile, Team Rocket have gone for a snack at the nearby Silver Town restaurant. They seem to be annoyed at the long line, so they cut through. Apparently, Jessie knocks into a lady, and she gets really angry and starts yelling. They argue for a bit, and then make a deal, as Jessie gets pulled into the kitchen. She realizes she can’t avoid this… so she waits. Then, someone asks her to cook something, so she agrees… but just as they leave, to James and Meowth’s surprise, she starts EATING the hamburger! They get surprised, but she gets angry and declares that the food is their possession now, as she gives them each a piece, and they run. However, the manager of the joint has found out, and starts chasing after themJ!

Meanwhile, Ash and co have gotten to the Johto League Silver hall, (a restaurant/Pokemon center type of place) where Ash is supposed to find out more about the tournament. Then, they go into a cool room with all sorts of high tech equipment. Along with a bunch of other people, he gets to sit in a comfy seat in front of a PC, which shows a bit of data on the Silver Tournament competitors. Brock warns Ash that this is no time to relax, since its time for the selection meeting. Ash agrees, and tries his best to concentrate. Brock explains, according to the guidebook, that during the selection meeting, they go to the selection hall, and they have battles there to decide the participants in the league. The rules for the selection battles are 1 on 1, and at the end, 48 trainers are to be chosen out of the 200 that registered. Ash seems to be cool with that, and Brock states that even if a trainer loses, there is a chance they can make it to the league preliminaries.

Later, they announce that Ash is supposed to battle a trainer named Saburou, from Cherrygrove City. Ash and Saburou step up, and the lights start flashing, and slowing down, until they stop on the box that means Ash attacks first. Ash sends Pikachu to battle, as Saburou sends out… Furret! Not only Ash, but Misty and Brock are also surprised. Brock warns him to be careful, since that Furret must be at a high level. Ash starts out having Pikachu Thunderbolt, but Furret does a Double Team, avoiding it easily! Pikachu is surprised at first, but gets more confused as they multiply and start surrounding him… The forms keep doing this until he is totally confused, and then all the forms disappear, as Furret uses Swift and hits Pikachu before it even notices! As Pikachu gets damaged, he regains consciousness, and heads at Furret for a Quick Attack! However, Furret escapes the attack by digging into the ground… coming out from behind, and using Headbutt on Pikachu! Pikachu decides to try a bit better… but Furret uses the Dig-Headbutt technique again, hurting Pikachu more!

Brock and Misty try giving Ash a bit of advice, but Furret keeps repeating this technique, sometimes even using Swift along the way. Ash figures he has to get Pikachu to stop Furret somehow. Saburou then points out that Pikachu is really weak now, and another attack could faint it… However, Pikachu jumps just in time, grabbing on to Furret’s back, as he flops around trying to get him off. As he hangs on, Furret manages to get underground! But, it looks like he took Pikachu with him. While underground with Furret, Pikachu Thunderbolts him… and suddenly, the ground explodes, creating a big hole in the field. Looks like he used a LOT of power. In the hole, Furret starts to get up, dazed. However, just as he’s getting up, Pikachu Slams him down, fainting him. Looks like Ash won the selection battle, and is now definitely going to the league preliminaries. Ash and Pikachu high five, as Saburou hugs his Furret, making sure it’s ok. It seemed ok, and anyways, Saburou said it put up a great fight. Ash and Saburou shake hands, promising to battle some other time.

Afterwards, Ash goes back to the main hall, and looks at the big screen with the tournament brackets, and glad to see his face there among the 48. Then, he notices Harrison (the one who helped get the Sacred Fire)’s face is there too. As he notices Gary’s face, he crosses his fingers and wishes himself best of luck. At least he’s glad he made it to the tournament for the time being. Suddenly, Charles Goodshow taps him from behind, and wishes him good luck. He explains that its simple, and each battle is fought using 3 Pokemon each. Then, the best 16 trainers head for the “survival system”, i.e. the finals. When Brock and Misty hear this, they warn Ash about the finals. But it doesn’t really matter, he’s confident with Pikachu!

Later that night, both Ash and Pikachu have trouble sleeping, due to the league preliminaries tomorrow. After much deliberation, they decide to go out for a walk. As they walk, Ash talks about how good he hopes they do, and how he’s confident in winning. Suddenly, Ash is surprised to notice Gary sitting by the river, right beside him! They each admit to each other that they can’t sleep, so they decided to hang out by the river. They both look at the moon, as Gary remembers the time he left Pallet Town… He says that Ash was lucky to have been late, as he noticed that his Pikachu is stronger than he expected. He also talks about how he was pleased with his… But he never expected Pikachu to be that strong. Then, he admits that it doesn’t matter who is better, and it’s all a matter of the pathways you take in life(Looks like Gary grew up a lot). They talk a bit more, and Gary says he hopes to win, but he hopes more to have fun in the tournament. However, Gary reminds him that their still rivals. But anyways, they wish each other good luck, and go back to sleep.

Next morning, Ash quickly gets dressed, and makes his way to the Silver ceremony, full of fireworks. Ash uses a nearby phone to call Oak, just as Tracey happens to be helping him organize documents and stuff. So, Ash’s Mom answers, and he tells her about how things are going there, about the flame and everything. She gets impressed, but Ash has to leave quickly, so he hangs up. Misty and Brock shake hands with Ash, wishing him luck as he heads for the stadium and they head for the audience. As Ash walks into the stadium, he happens to be right behind Gary, as they wink at each other. Suddenly, Team Rocket come along, disguised as people who are rooting for Ash. They make up some story(I think it has to do with Ash having forgot something), and they lure Ash, and somehow trick him into giving them Pikachu, as they shut him up in a box. Ash is then surprised to find that its really Team Rocket! Ash quickly shakes hands with everyone during the ceremony, and then sets off after Team Rocket to look for Pikachu. Gary seems concerned as well, and decides to go after Ash. Meanwhile, Oak is watching TV, and wonders why Ash and Gary seem to be acting so weird. Back at the stadium, Ash and Gary head after where Team Rocket went, and suddenly Ash gets trapped in a net! Gary is surprised, and quickly loosens the ropes for Ash. Suddenly, Team Rocket, in all the commotion, collide with the bearer of the flame! Suddenly the torch goes flying… Ash is worried, and does his best to go after it… and safely catches it. Team Rocket are confused now, and before they can utter a word, Pikachu sends them blasting off with a Thunderbolt.

Although Ash may be happy, he then notices that the bearer of the flame broke his leg! Everyone is shocked, and wants the flame to be carried the whole way… Ash and Gary both consider it. Before they do anything, they crowd around the bearer of the flame to make sure he’s ok… and then they continue their ceremony. Ash and Gary decide to hold the torch together, and as the ceremony continues, Misty and Brock are surprised, as well as Oak and Ash’s Mom, who are watching this on TV. Gary gets tired, so Ash continues the ceremony holding the flame himself, as he thinks about his battles. After everyone applauds, and Mr. Goodshow does a speech, Ash and Gary gaze at the flame in the front of the stadium, and wish themselves luck!

Thanks to Spinazak for writing This for us

268: A Claim to Flame!

268: The Silver Tournament! The Return of Gary!


Not Yet

Professor Oak
Delia Ketchum
Mr. Goodshow
Professor Elm

Pikachu Mr. Mime Cyndaquil Phanpy
Special/Other Trainers:
Nidoking Feraligatr Ursaring
Machoke Exeggutor

Ash has his first Johto League Match in a 1 on 1 and Wins
Mr. Goodshow makes a return
Ash and Gary gain a mutual respect for eachother