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Lady Platinum Berlitz voices out her determination to protect the three legendary Pokemon under siege from the explosion of the Galactic Bomb at the lakes one week later together with Diamond and Pearl, and causes everyone to gasp in shock.

Prof. Rowan and Sir Berlitz bolt to their feet and try to reason with the girl, but the two men suddenly buckle at their knees and collapse onto the ground. Byron hurriedly checks on them, and Rowan grunts that their back and legs are cramping from having stayed so long inside the cubic cage.

Sir Berlitz climbs back onto his feet while telling Platinum to get her thoughts straight, and says he will not allow her to partake in a task that is clearly way too dangerous for her. However, Platinum shakes her head, and says she has made up her mind, and will not listen even if it's her father's orders this time. As she makes the declaration, her heightened emotions causes Ponyta to glow and tremble, and in a flash of light, evolve into a Rapidash.

Platinum states that someone stood beside her bed last night and revealed to her in her sleep, that the lakes will be dried up by a bomb, and that Azelf, Uxie and Mesprit will be captured. All of these are planned to be executed one week later, and the masterminds are no other than Team Galactic, the same organization that has tricked Sir Berlitz into paying a huge amount of ransom. Platinum says she will not allow this evil scheme to come to pass, and Sir Berlitz is having a hard time believing that his daughter is planning to thwart this whole thing with their own strength. He hollers that she has clearly not considered carefully what foes she is up against, and there is no way they could crush such powerful enemies themselves.

Hearing that, Byron suddenly sends out his Bronzong, and ambushes Platinum from behind. Pearl cries that it is an Extrasensory attack, and Platinum quickly gets Rapidash to spin around, who lifts up its front legs to block the energy blast, causing everyone to gasp in awe, all but Byron, who puts on a content smile.

Sir Berlitz exclaims with fury and demands to know what Byron is doing, and the Canalave Gymleader grins that he was just trying to show him how strong his daughter is. He picks up Platinum's scarf, and points to the six Gym Badges pinned on it. Platinum feels a little uncertain about the Mine Badge which she didn't earn properly, but Byron assures her that their battle yesterday was as official as any gym matches, as she treated him as a true opponent and gave her best.

Sir Berlitz doesn't really get what Byron is trying to say, and the Canalave Gymleader hands the scarf back to Platinum, stating that he is in support of the girl's decision. Sir Berlitz cries that it is completely absurd for his daughter to fight some evil criminals, and argues that it should be the job of the police. Byron sighs that Sir Berlitz probably still haven't figured out why he chose to bring them back to his gym instead of turning to the police after they were trapped inside the cube by Team Galactic. The truth is, the enemy is too strong, too strong for ordinary police to handle. The situation might have been different if the international police force is involved, but that would be another issue.

Byron states that it is a remarkable feat to obtain 6 badges within 25 days, on par or even greater than the record of 8 badges within 80 days in another region. When Platinum voiced her determination, it actually reminded him of his own son Roark's declaration to become a gymleader. Children always grow up much quicker than a parent thinks, and sometimes, it just happens in an instant.

Prof. Rowan ponders for a moment, and remarks that given Platinum's determination and her strength, he would actually like to bestow upon her the task to investigate on the matter even. Sir Berlitz feels troubled that even the professor shows support to Platinum's decision, and takes a good look at his daughter, who keeps a calm and determined expression on her face. Sir Berlitz wants to know if she really wouldn't change her mind, and the girl firmly nods.

Finally, Sir Berlitz gives in, and sighs with a gentle smile that she shall have his permission in that case. He grins that it is the first time that he heard her thank somebody, and turns to face Diamond and Pearl as he gets up with Bronzong's help. He pulls out the scarves that the boys have taken off and left inside the gym yesterday, and says he has meant to return the garments to them before they leave.

The man muses to himself how the two professional bodyguards he hired wear red and green scarves respectively as their signatures, and how Platinum was supposed to recognize them by that. Perhaps it is fate or just coincidence, but it's certainly not Dia and Pearl's fault that they happen to be wearing the same coloured scarves, which started the whole misunderstanding in the first place.

Now, he feels thankful for this coincidence, which has led to happenings beyond his imagination. Dia and Pearl are astonished that Sir Berlitz is not passing accusations on what they've done, and Sir Berlitz grins that there is nothing to blame them for. In fact, as a parent, he is pleasantly surprised by the shocking changes he has seen in his daughter, and it is all thanks to Dia and Pearl. With that, he puts the scarves back on for the boys, as an acknowledgement to their companionship with Platinum.

Prof. Rowan remarks that they seem to have come to a consensus, and hopes the trio will keep them informed about the happenings at the three lakes. Dia, Pearl and Platinum promise that they will, and Rowan says he would like to take their Pokedexes back for a while before they depart. The trio does as they are told, and Platinum wonders what the professor has in mind. Rowan inserts a small chip into each Dex, and explains that he is doing a version upgrade, adding two new features to the devices, the first being the ability to display alternate appearances of Pokemon such as gender difference, and the second being the capacity to record data on species from other regions that are not found under the Sinnoh Dex category.

Platinum marvels at the new additions, and Prof. Rowan remarks that it is yet another pleasant coincidence that they are faced with this whole business just when the version upgrades have been finalized and released during the Academic Conference. He states that the Dexes and the Poketches are indeed not meant for Dia and Pearl in the first place, but right now, he thinks it is appropriate to pass them to the boys. With that, Prof. Rowan officially gives the two sets of Pokedexes and Poketches to Dia and Pearl, who beam with gratitude and gratefulness.

Dia, Pearl and Platinum then gather with their six Pokemon, and begin to discuss their next step. Platinum says the areas under siege are the three great lakes of Sinnoh, Valor, Verity and Acuity, and believes they must head to each one of them. Pearl agrees, but Dia flips out their Town Map with a worried look, and says if the scheme being executed is really one week later, it won't be possible for them to visit all lakes in time, given their far proximity to each other and the number of days remaining. Pearl takes a look at the map to see that that it is indeed true, and cries that they clearly don't have enough time as he starts running around frantically. Next to him, Chatlord flies around and repeats the phrase 'not enough time'.

Dia wants to know how many Galactic Bombs have been made, and Platinum, after considering the big sum of money Team Galactic has ransomed from her father and the number of lakes, figures that there should logically be three bombs as well. Pearl exclaims that the three lakes will mostly likely be exploded at the same time, and there is no way for them to investigate each lake in time. As Pearl runs around feeling troubled, wondering what to do, he suddenly trips over himself, and Empoleon rushes over to catch him just in time. Pearl accidentally rubs off something from the king penguin's chest, and as it falls onto the ground, Pearl sees that it is the Normal Rank Cool Ribbon that it has won during the Hearthome Contest. Pearl grins that Empoleon must be wearing it to remind itself of the effort it made back then, and remembers the Pokemon Fan Club President whom they encountered in the city. While the President is no doubt an oddball, he occasional makes good statements that make one thinks.

Pearl then recalls what the President said about time running out on them during their contest preparation, and that the best strategy was to split the job. Wearing a grin, Pearl turns around to face Dia and Platinum, and says they are a trio. He extends his fist out to them, and the other two realize what he is suggesting.

Dia remarks that there are a total of three lakes, and Platinum agrees that they have a total of three people, allowing each one of them to take responsibility for one lake, and to protect the legendary Pokemon there. With that, the three trainers join their fists together, and feel grateful that they have finally come up with the best solution.

And so, following a thorough discussion, it is decided that Pearl will head to Lake Valor, and Platinum will journey towards Lake Acuity. Dia gets ready to set out for Lake Verity, but Byron suddenly stops him in his tracks, and drags him elsewhere by his bagpack. Dia gets nervous about where they are going, and gasps in surprise when Byron takes him to the harbour, in front of a docked liner there named S.S. Sinnoh.

The Canalave Gymleader states that the ship will sail out in the morning, and head towards a destination where he has arranged a tutor to give Dia a special training session. Dia is astonished at the plan, and Byron explains that from what he observed yesterday, Dia is an extraordinary boy. While Platinum is genuinely strong from all her real battle experiences, and Pearl is able to tell the attack he and his Pokemon are going to use simply by looking at their movements, Dia alone does not seem to possess any battle sense in him.

On the other hand, Dia has managed to befriend the Shieldon which Byron himself has failed to do so regardless of all the methods or tricks he tried. Dia turns around, and sees that the little shield Pokemon is indeed snuggling up to him at he knees. Byron grins that it is why he has thought about it, and decided to give Dia a little polishing before he heads off to the lake.

He hands Dia a letter, which contains everything he has just told him, and tells him to show it to the ship's captain after he gets on board. Dia wonders what he should do with the Shieldon, and Byron laughs that he seems to have no choice but to give it to Dia. The boy beams with a grin, and makes up his mind on a nickname for his new team member.

The next morning, Pearl wakes up with Chimlord and Chatlord in a holiday inn on Route 204, and gets ready to start a new day. After getting changed, he makes his way down the wooden stairs to the lobby, and takes a seat on the old crouch there. He recalls how he would always be the first to rise and wait at the lobby of their hotel, seeing Lady Berlitz come down shortly, and then Dia arriving last.

He would always know when Dia arrives, because their Pokedex would start beeping, and the three of them would turn off the sound to begin their new day. Yet, his Pokedex that used to beep every morning will not beep today. Somehow, the beeping Pokedex managed to make him feel good every morning. As a tear falls onto his orange Pokedex, he wipes off another from his eye and looks out from the window, willing himself to stay strong.

Meanwhile, in a grand hotel on Route 211, Lady Berlitz wakes up in her suite room, and greets Empoleon and Rapidash good morning. She gets herself dressed, and takes the lift to the lobby, where she sits down on one of the white leather sofa chairs with her bag in hand. She remembers how Pearl would always rise before her and wait at the lobby, and greet her with an expression that tells her that she is late. Afterwards, Dia would wake up and join them, still with his eyes half closed.

She would always know when Dia comes down, because their Pokedex would give off the resonant sound, and the three of them would turn it off and start their new day. Yet, her Pokedex that would always beep every morning will not beep today. Feeling an emptiness inside without the familiar beeping that she hears every morning, she tries to tell herself that it is nothing, that it is just an ordinary sound, but tears quickly well up in her eyes, and fall like raindrops onto her red Pokedex.

On board the S.S. Sinnoh, Dia wakes up on the deck next to Beh and Roo, and gives a pat to the new member on his team, Shieldon, who he nicknames Pooh. He slowly walks up to the front porch of the liner, and leans against the fence to look out at the open seas. He thinks about how Pearl and the Lady would always have risen when he opened his eyes, and were already waiting at the lobby for him.

He would always know when he is getting close to the other two, because their Pokedex would resonate with beeps, and the three of them would silence it to commence their new day. Yet, his Pokedex that has got into the habit to beep every morning will not beep today. He wonders why he feels so uneasy today, for it is just the sound that he hears every morning that is missing after all, or perhaps not. Starting with a small sob, tears gradually break like a dam to trickle down his face, and onto his blue Pokedex.

For Pearl, Platinum and Dia, starting today, they will be on their own...

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

Thanks To Coronis For Writing this for us

377: VS Rapidash

Volume 34