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At Lake Verity, Mesprit is surrounded by a flock of Staravias in midair. The pink pixie finds it increasingly difficult to dodge the assaults of the starling birds, and Mars giggles that her grunts have surely set their layout well. She thinks that it is time to launch Formation M, and sees from her handheld computer that the air-shuttle at Lake Acuity has started its return to Veilstone. She believes that she should bring Mesprit back as soon as possible as well, and the dome-shaped device that is lowered from the air-shuttles hutch instantly shoots out a net to capture a startled Mesprit.

Clinging onto Drifblim, Dia cries that he cannot let that happen, and throws himself against Mesprit's restrainer. Before Mars could stop him, he pulls out Roo's Pokeball and releases the Torterra in the middle of the air, causing the red-haired TG Commander to gasp in shock. She is interested to see what will happen however, when such a heavy Pokemon that doesn't fly plummets from such a height.

However, Dia states that they will be safe from the fall because there is a vast lake beneath them. The more important point is what will happen before Roo plummets. With that, he orders a Dia-special-mach-one-and-only Razor Leaf from Roo, and Mars bolts with a start when she sees the Torterra unleash a single fast-moving leaf towards the cord that suspends Mesprit's restrainer from the air-shuttle.

She hollers that the boy is using the same tactic as he did back at Rowan's Science Lab, and quickly dives down with Yanmega. However, before she could fend off Roo's single leaf, Dia commands the Torterra to unleash a normal Razor Leaf, which rips at the Team Galactic Commander like a storm of blades, causing her to shriek and duck.

In the next instant, something slams shut. Mars looks up in surprise to see that the air-shuttle's hutch has closed, and the space where the restrainer was is completely empty. She starts to wonder where Mesprit and the boy have gone, and almost immediately hears two splashes from the lake below, clearly caused by heavy objects plummeting into it. She then sees a torn piece of the capture net floating in midair, and catches it with a baffled look.

Just then, the air-shuttle starts its engines and begins to speed away, and Mars realizes with a start at what must have happened. As all three air-shuttles have been programmed to return to Veilstone automatically once the assigned lake Pokemon has been captured, its auto-piloting signifies that Mesprit must have already been caught and brought on board.

Mars laughs hysterically that their mission is accomplished, albeit the tiny bit of trouble, and retrieves Purugly from the top of Drifblim into its Pokeball. She rationalizes that instead of hitting the suspending cord, the one-leaf Razor Leaf must have ended up shearing off the part of the capture net which Dia was holding onto, causing the boy to fall into the lake along with the giant turtle Pokemon, and thus the two loud splashes. She rejoices at her success as she hovers around on Yanmega, and announces to her grunts that their task at the lake has been completed. The group then retreats into the giant windmill and in no time takes off into the air.

Back at Lake Valor central isle cave, Saturn puts on a big grin as he comes face to face with the legendary Pokemon that governs knowledge, and rejoices that Azelf has finally showed up. He immediately attempts a capture, but the blue pixie unleashes a blinding flash of light, and causes the TG Commander to wince and draw back in astonishment.

Pearl, on the other hand, recognizes the flash as the same one he experienced before, and already feels accustomed to it. While Saturn is busy activating a light filter on his glass vessel, he grabs the chance to break free from the hand-extensor, and hides himself behind the rocks. As Saturn's vision slowly recovers, he is furious to see that not only Pearl but also Azelf have gone, and hollers that they must not let the legendary Pokemon escape.

Crawling back towards the opening of the cave after Azelf, Pearl is angered and pained by what Team Galactic is trying to do with it, and can totally understand how Dia felt back in Celestic. He vows not to let the evil people get hold of the blue pixie, and calls forward Chatlord, Chimlord and Raylord to protect it.

Outside the cave, the TG grunts have lined up a team of Haunters and Machamps to ambush Azelf, and the moment that the Pokemon flies out, they immediately start attacking. Saturn soon emerges from the cave as well, and demands that they get him the restrainer Formation A right away. Azelf manages to evade the attack of the Haunters, but quickly finds itself surrounded by the Machamps, who have stacked themselves on top of one another to gain height. Cornered by the many hands that are reaching towards it, the blue pixie becomes overwhelmed, and eventually has one of its tails caught by a Machamp, which leads to a cheer from Saturn.

Pearl cries that he cannot allow that to happen, and orders a Flare Blitz from Chimlord. The fire ape instantly wraps itself in a circle of flames before charging forward, and slams hard into the Machamp, causing it to lose its grip. However, a second Machamp easily catches the tail again, and Pearl hollers that he will keep attacking until Azelf breaks free. With that, Chimlord delivers Flare Blitz after Flare Blitz on the Machamps, and before long, starts to tire itself out due to the recoil damage from the move.

Saturn knows about this well, and grins that the Infernape is just seeking suicide. He believes that it is time to put an end to the battle, and orders his Octillery to fire off a Gunk Shot. Hearing a peculiar sound from behind, Pearl bolts around and sees the jet Pokemon charging itself up. However, it is already too late to react. Octillery spits out a forceful blast of filthy garbage, and everything immediately blacks out in front of Pearl's eyes.

A while later, Rad Rickshaw finally regains consciousness, and vaguely remembers seeing a powerful flash during his coma. He is glad to see that both Clefairin and Clefairan are alright, and thanks them for taking care of him. He wonders what has become of Pearl, and jumps in horror when he discovers that the entire Lake Valor has been vaporized, and Magikarps are scattered everywhere on the dried land.

Rushing down to what used to be the lake's bottom, he soon finds Pearl collapsed on the ground, and hurries over to him. With a bitter tone, the boy mutters that he has failed to protect the lake Pokemon, Azelf, after all, that the evil organization, Team Galactic, has succeeded in taking it away...

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

Thanks To Coronis For Writing this for us

399: VS Machamp

Volume 36