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After finishing in the top 8 in the Johto League, Ash and co are headed back to Pallet Town, and on the way, they decide to take a pit stop in Viridian City. They decide to take a stop at the Pokemon Center first (which brings back lots of early memories!), and they deposit their Pokeballs for a healing. Brock starts flirting and gets dragged away as usual J. Ash then asks if she remembers him at all, and tries to remind her of the incident… but she says that it must have been with the old Joy that used to work at the Viridian City Pokecenter. Misty then introduces herself, and Joy gasps, and tells Misty that the leaders of the Cerulean Gym have a message for her! Wondering what this is about, she quickly picks up the phone and calls them. Daisy answers, and tells Misty that they just won the supermarket lottery for three people to go on a world tour, and they’re gonna need someone to watch the house and the Gym until they return! Before Misty could say anything, the connection is cut. Surprised, Misty complains about how its not fair that they get to do all the fun stuff, while she has to housesit…

Ash can’t really think of a sensitive thing to say, so Misty gets annoyed… Then, Joy approaches again, holding… THE BIKE! It seems to be in a bit better condition than last time! She explains that the former Joy somehow managed to fix it, and now she can quickly go back to Cerulean City, and Ash seems relieved that his troubles are over… However, Misty complains that it’s still not as good. Then, she starts blowing up at Ash about how its his fault that the bike will never be what it used to be, she gets SO angry that she just runs away from the Pokemon Center. Ash then wonders what he said that made her so angry, and Brock thinks for a moment. Brock then says its best to leave her alone for now, and she’ll eventually get over it. But Ash doesn’t seem too pleasant…

Meanwhile, Misty wanders alone through Viridian City, with tears in her eyes, wondering if she made the right decision to leave Ash and Brock… After walking for a while, having no idea where she is, three boys approach her, depressed to see such a girl cry. They quickly run up to her, and try to cheer her up, asking whats wrong. She bluffs and tries to fake being OK, as she holds back the tears… but they’re not fooled easily. So, she introduce herself, and they introduce themselves as Chan, Shan, and Rin. They say that their known throughout Viridian City as the “Fighting Brothers”, and they put on a little act with their three Hitmons to cheer Misty up. Then, one of them suggests “How ‘bout a bit o training to cheer ya up!”

Misty and Chan have their battle in a nearby park, and the rules are 1 VS 1. Rin and Shan watch as Misty takes out Politoed, while Chan uses Hitmonchan. Politoed quickly shoots out a Water Gun— and knocks out Hitmonchan! Surprised, Chan tells his brothers to help them defeat Politoed, as they take out Hitmontop and Hitmonlee. Misty freezes, wondering what to do… Then, who is to appear but Ash and Brock. Apparently, they have been watching them the whole time, and they decide that its their turn to challenge the other two. Surprised, Misty thanks them for saving her. Ash takes out Pikachu, which easily knocks out Hitmontop with a Thunderbolt, and Brock uses Forretress, knocking out Hitmonlee with a Rapid Spin. Misty thanks them once again, and Brock introduces himself and Ash, saying that they’re Misty’s friends. Then, Ash turns to Misty, and she tells him that it looked great to see them fighting at the same time! They suggest they should train more.

Meanwhile, Team Rocket are nearby, thinking of a new plan. Eventually, Meowth tells Wobbuffet to push a switch, and when he does, two goalposts rise from the ground on the field where Ash and co are standing, and they trap them all inside as they close! Ash and co are surprised and well when they see Team Rocket appear again… but the Fighting Brothers seem to be acquainted with Team Rocket! They ask Team Rocket to let them out, but they just ignore him… and then they realize who these brothers are! They start arguing with Team Rocket, and they mention a bargain they made long ago about Team Rocket promising to get them some gold… but apparently they don’t have any. Chan and co get angry at them for breaking the promise… and luckily, Chan had some scissors in his pocket. He takes them out, and uses them to deactivate the net, jump out, and pounce on Team Rocket! A bit later, they close the net back up before Ash and co could get out! Looks like the brothers betrayed them. However, Ash and co take out Pikachu, Politoed, and Forretress, and they work together to blast through the net, and send TR blasting off together with the Fighting Brothers!

Then, Misty tells Ash about how good he battled, and he thanks her as well. They exchange glances with happy expressions… but suddenly, Misty’s expression turns serious. She decides that she’s gonna go get her bike. She runs to the center, and a few seconds later, she returns, the bike working fine. Ash and Brock decide to take a little walk, following Misty on her bike (Togepi sitting in the basket) as they head down the river. Misty then notices various things about each of them: Ash forgot to wash his face, Pikachu hasn’t been eating enough, and Brock… well, she’s a bit surprised and relieved that he hasn’t fallen for any of her older sisters.

On the way, she doesn’t really feel like bringing all that up, so they talk about their adventures. Misty then realizes how much she’s gonna miss Ash and Brock, going on all sorts of cool adventures, encountering lots of cool Pokemon, meeting new people… and of course, she’ll never forget the day she met Ash. It may have been accidental, and it may seem like they only got to know each other more because of the bike… but then Misty admits that she traveled with him because she wanted to make friends. Brock then says he felt just the same way, and realizes how far he traveled just by meeting Ash and Misty. Misty just smiles at Ash and Brock.

As the sun sets, the three of them come to the point in the path were it’s time to separate. Ash and Misty gaze at each other… shake hands, and declare “Until the day we meet again!” Brock then quickly remembers something, and realizes that he has to go home too! Apparently he’s got some busness to do… Ash waves goodbye to Misty and Brock, and sets off his own way… However, suddenly, they come back! They happen to have presents for Ash to remember them by! Brock gives him a knife and fork, while Misty gives him a handkerchief. Ash thanks them a bunch, and as he says his last goodbye Misty and Brock, he feels he’s ready to leave… or not. He then leaves, wondering if he did the right thing… but deep in his mind he knows he did. As they part, Misty wonders if Ash will get her message from when she gave him the hankerchief , and Brock is still crying, and using his tears to salt some of the leftover rice balls. As for Ash, he lets out his tears in the hankie, as he runs towards Pallet Town!

Home sweet home… Ash made it home with Pikachu. His mother welcomes him, and he goes to sleep. He wakes up and eats breakfast, as his Mom tells him that Gary is supposed to be back today as well, to study with Oak. Ash, wanting to meet up with Gary, quickly leaves the table and goes to visit Oak. However, when Ash arrives at Oak’s, he says that Gary already left. Ash, a bit disappointed, asks where he went, and Tracey says that he found a new goal. Oak says that he left all his Pokemon except Blastoise at the lab to study. However, Ash doesn’t give up… he asks where Gary went, because he really needs to talk to him. Suddenly, Gary comes back, and tells Oak that he decided he wants to quit his goal of being a Pokemon master, and instead go off to study about Pokemon. Ash, glad to see Gary, quickly tells him what he needed, as he takes out Gary’s half of the split Pokeball, and says that its really Gary who deserves it. He thanks him a bunch, and then he and Gary set off in opposite directions.

Ash then hangs out with Pikachu outside for a while… and suddenly, Pikachu points up, surprised. Ash looks up, and gasps… it’s Ho-oh, and its flying towards Houen! Then, he remembers that that’s where he’s headed too, to face lots of new Pokemon, and new battles. Ash’s Mom seems to be surprised that he’s leaving, and says that she wants to talk to him first. Ash then starts heading back— and falls into a trap hole! He looks up, and to his “surprise”, he finds Team Rocket again. Ash gets angry and says that he just parted with Misty and Brock, and it would be nice to part with them. However, they ignore him, and use Weezing to give him a Smoke Screen, blocking his view of the top. Pikachu starts to be in pain… but Ash thinks fast, and remembers his separation gifts… he quickly gives Misty’s handkerchief to Pikachu, and stuffs it in his mouth so he won’t breath the stuff, and then he uses Brock’s utensils to dig into the rock, and climb out of the hole! As he gets out, he flashes the fork, spoon, and handkerchief, as he has Pikachu Thunderbolt them, sending them blasting off.

Ash then thanks Misty and Brock in his heart for the items, and decides that he still wants to be a Pokemon Master! Then, Ash stops at Oak’s house, and tells him that the next day, when he sets off on his journey to Houen, he wants to do as Gary did, and start the journey with just Pikachu. He wants to let Oak study his Pokemon, and he wants to have space for a team of brand new Pokemon. Oak then suggests that if he goes to Houen, he should stop at Mishiro Town first, and meet Professor Odamaki, one of his students. Tracey wishes him best of luck, and then Ash’s Mom comes, and tells Ash to put on some new clothes, since he’s been in these for a while. He changes, then Oak wishes him good luck, as he quickly checks out Ash’s upgraded Pokedex. He gives it back, and says that Ash is just about ready to go to Houen. He shakes his fist, does his “Pokemon Master” pose, and gets ready to leave for Houen tomorrow!

Thanks to Spinazak for writing This for us

275: Gotta Catch Ya Later!

275: Farewell...and then Setting Off!



Professor Oak
Nurse Joy

Pikachu Mr. Mime
Togepi Politoed
Tentacruel Hitmonchan
Tentacruel Hitmontop
Tentacruel Hitmonlee

Ash, Brock and Misty get back to Viridian City
Misty goes back to the Cerulean Gym
Brock heads back to the Pewter Gym

Ash sees Ho-oh Again
Ash leaves all his Pokémon except Pikachu at Oaks
Ash changes to new clothes
Ash gets a New Pokédex
Ash heads for Houen with Pikachu