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Cornering Xerosic with Croaky, who has now evolved into a Greninja, X demands to know what exactly the Pokemon Village is and what the place holds. However, before he could get an answer out of the red-haired Scientist, Malamar regains consciousness and ambushes him from behind. It lashes out its powerful tentacles towards X, but Croaky whacks them off with its long tongue as the boy leaps out of the way. Xerosic takes the time to turn and run, but X catches up with him and smashes his head against the floor to immobilize him. He then reiterates his question, and Xerosic decides that it wouldn't hurt to reveal a little something.

The Team Flare Scientist explains that the Pokemon Village is a secret realm in Kalos, a special place which is only inhabited by Pokemon. The area is devoid of humans, and the Pokemon who gathered there had all suffered from terrible fates inflicted upon them by men. To put it simple, the Pokemon Village is a paradise for Pokemon. As for his reason of leaving the Village to ambush them, he was doing it in an attempt to redeem himself for infuriating Lysandre. X fails to understand why Xerosic is so fearful of Lysandre, but his remark is met with a snicker. Xerosic states that while he is indeed in fear, it is not because of Lysandre's wraith. Rather, it is due to the fact that he will be losing the man's support in his work, and there is nothing scarier than not being able to do what he is destined to, something which he believes a brat like X would never understand.

Since young, Xerosic has always had a keen interest and talent in invention. Thanks to the many opportunities and financial support given to him by his family, his inventions earned worldwide recognition and fame. However, those were not his real desires. Instead, he was captivated by the ancient science used by the Kalos King 3000 years ago, the tabooed technology which created the Ultimate Weapon and had the ability to control both humans and Pokemon. Ever since he learnt of this technology, he yearned to experiment on it and the strong desire has kept him awake even in the middle of the night. At that time, he was approached by Lysandre, who somehow knew of his desire to research on the subject. The man offered him a position in Team Flare, and started supporting his work. Yet, even as a Team Flare Scientist, he still barely managed to make progress on his research owing to his own sense of ethicality.

One day, Lysandre visited him at his lab, and saw that his Inkay was on the brim of evolution. Xerosic himself was aware of it but has failed to trigger the process despite experimenting on hold items, trading, weather status and even time zones. Then, Lysandre turned his Inkay upside down, and to his shock, it evolved into a Malamar. With a laugh, Lysandre introduced him to the concept of reverse thinking, which involves approaching problems from the opposite perspective. The man said that when one is stuck, it is a good idea to see things the other way, turning 'up' to 'down', 'down' to 'up', 'black' to 'white', 'light' to 'shadow', 'past' to 'future', 'soft' to 'hard', and so on. In order to do that however, one must let go of the beliefs they have held on to so far, and view things from the other end of the spectrum. Pointing to the homeless people on the streets, Lysandre stated that no matter how much they 'give', there would always be people and Pokemon being 'taken' from, which showed that a line must be drawn on who is worth 'giving' to and who isn't. Xerosic argued that it would be unethical to do that, but Lysandre wanted him to think of it the reverse way. Instead of 'giving' fairly, they would be 'taking' fairly. Lysandre urged Xerosic to imagine how beautiful Kalos would be if they removed all that troubled them, and indeed, when Xerosic came to think of it, it wasn't necessary to apply the same ethical concepts to people who are worth and those who are not. With this new enlightenment from Lysandre, Xerosic finally overcame his obstacle and made great progress in his work.

Unfortunately, all of this will be coming to a halt since he has made Lysandre angry, and the red-haired Scientist hollers that he will not give up the freedom he has had so far. With that, he orders a Hypnosis from Malamar, and the dark squid hurls forward a globe of psychic energy. Croaky quickly leaps out of the way and retaliates with a Bubble, but while it should normally lower its opponent's speed, the handful of frubbles boosts Malamar's agility instead. X gasps with realization that Malamar's ability is Contrary, which causes any stat change to have an opposite effect, and thinks hard on what to do. Since Croaky isn't his, he has trouble bringing out its full potential, and knows that he must get one of his own Pokemon onto the battle field as soon as possible. He calls for a Double Team from Croaky to confuse Malamar, and uses the temporary distraction to have the Greninja wake his team members and companions with its long tongue.

Xerosic gets enraged that Malamar's attacks are not landing, and decides that it is time to turn things around. He orders a Topsy-Turvy, and as the dark squid flips itself upside-down, Croaky's fake images vanish instantly and its evasiveness drops sharply. Malamar then fires another Hypnosis, which hits Croaky spot on and puts it to sleep. X looks around feeling troubled, and sees that everyone is in too deep sleep to be awakened, all but Salame, who has remained inside its Pokeball all this time. Putting all hope on his only option, he clicks on the Pokeball's button to send it out, but to his shock and dismay, the Charmeleon stays in and refuses to come out.

At that moment, Malamar thrashes out with one of its tentacles, and whacks X hard on the back of his neck. The boy immediately gets stunned and tumbles forward as he loses grip on Salame's Pokeball. The Pokeball rolls onto the floor, and Xerosic is surprised that the boy still has an unused Pokemon. He orders Malamar to crush it, but Salame rolls itself away and manages to dodge the attacks, causing Xerosic to grunt in frustration. Unfortunately, it eventually gets cornered against a tree, and Xerosic grins that there is no way it can run now. X watches in horror as Malamar brings down its sharp tentacle, but something jumps in the last moment to shield Salame from the hit. X gasps that it is Marisso, who has managed to wake itself but is still drowsy from the effect of Hypnosis, and Xerosic believes that whatever is in the Pokeball must be a trump card if its teammates are willing to go this far to protect it. He orders Malamar to strike with Night Slash, and the attack causes Marisso to wince in agony. However, it keeps itself positioned over Salame's Pokeball, and its determination bewilders both Xerosic and X.

Just then, Trevor comes around, and groggily states that Marisso is protecting Salame because it must have sensed its importance. Since their days at Prof. Sycamore's lab, the two have been companions, and have been separated, reunited, and finally partnered up on a journey. Having spent so much time together, Marisso must somehow know that Salame is the key to winning their battle, and is therefore protecting it with all its might. In that instant, the Quilladin begins to tremble and glow, and in a flash of flight evolves into a Chesnaught. X exclaims with astonishment, and Xerosic is furious that the Pokemon's determination is so strong that it has evolved. Nevertheless, he can see that it doesn't have much health points left, and believes that it should go down soon. Indeed, after Malamar delivers several more whacks on its back, Marisso slumps forward and releases its grip on Salame's Pokeball.

Wearing a wide grin, Xerosic bends down to pick up the Pokeball, but is shocked to find it empty. A flame then lights up from underneath Marisso, and the exhausted but content Chesnaught moves sideways to reveal that Salame has come out of its Pokeball. X notices the newfound look of determination on its face, and realizes that it must have finally come to terms with its fate. At that moment, Y, Shauna and Tierno regain consciousness, and wonder what X is talking about. X explains that recently, Salame has been lost, or rather, scared. Ever since it saw Kanga, Elec and Garma shine with their Mega Stones at Anistar City, it became wary of the same destiny that would befall itself and felt intimidated. Trevor jumps in bewilderment that Salame's evolved form, Charizard, is also capable of Mega Evolution, and recalls that it is not included on Team Flare's list. X acknowledges the fact, but believes it to be true nonetheless. As Trevor has said, Marisso must have felt it as well, since the two have battled each other in the past. Unfortunately, Salame has always been the clumsy one who lacks confidence. After meeting Green's Charizard, who is not only strong but poised, Salame started to doubt whether it has what it takes to evolve. Its insecurity got worse when it saw what happened at the Sundial, and it most likely thought that Mega Evolution was too much a burden for it to bear. However, when Marisso risked its own life to protect it, it finally accepted its fate, and is now ready to become a Charizard, and Mega Charizard.

Xerosic cries with fury that it is all nonsense, and says there is no way that their list is flawed. On a deeper thought, he decides that it wouldn't matter since he will finish them before they have a chance to find its Mega Stone, but X grins that there is no need to search for it. His answer baffles his friends, and they wonder why he is so certain that Salame can Mega Evolve. X reminds them that Salame is always hugging its tail as if it holds something important it doesn't want lost or stolen, and his four childhood companions simultaneously let out a cry of shock and realization. Xerosic feels troubled by their cry, and demands an explanation as he seems to be the only one not getting it. With a grin, X shares a nod with Salame, and the Charmeleon blows at the flame on its tail to reveal a Mega Stone hidden on its tip, which causes Xerosic to let out a cry of shock himself.

Meanwhile, Team Flare's four female Scientists are spying on the battle using an electronic tablet. Celosia comments that the Vaniville kids seem to have improved their team work, and Mable thinks they have clearly underestimated them. Bryony believes that they should put aside their rivalry for now, and Aliana agrees with a giggle that it is time to show the kids their own team work. With that, the four get themselves ready, and heads off to join Xerosic in taking down their opponents…

Thanks To Coronis For Writing this for us



040: VS Chesnaught!

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