Chapter 8: Legend of the Lakes
Much had happened since Ash had captured Spiritomb. Many weeks had passed, and in that time Ash had done battle with and defeated the leader of the Hearthome City Gym, Fantina, who was a wielder of Ghost-type Pokemon. It was a difficult battle, but Ash managed to defeat Fantina using both Riolu and Spiritomb, who he had managed to tame somewhat since catching it. All the while Ash’s training with Riley continued, Ash had not only started to master seeing things by their Aura, but had begun to get the hang of sensing emotions through Aura as well. One thing Ash was having difficulty with however was manipulating Aura to form a barrier like he had done when he fought Spiritomb.
Recently, Ash had done battle with the leader of the Veilstone City Gym, Maylene, who was an expert user of Fighting-type Pokemon, and even possessed her own Lucario. Maylene’s Lucario had defeated both Riolu and Spiritomb, but in the end it was Pikachu that triumphed. After defeating Maylene, the group began their journey to the next gym in Pastoria City. A day after they left Veilstone Ash and the others had decided to camp out near Lake Valor. On that particular day they had just finished eating lunch.
“Guys, I’m gonna go take a walk by the lake for a bit.” Ash told the others.
“Don’t take too long Ash. We should get moving soon if we want to get to the next town before Pastoria City.” Misty reminded him.
“You don’t have to tell me twice.” Ash said with a smile and a thumbs-up. “Pikachu, Riolu, let’s go.”
Before long, Ash, Pikachu, and Riolu had arrived at the edge of Lake Valor. It was a large and very beautiful lake with pristine clear water that shimmered in the sun. Surrounding the lake were several tall trees.
“Wow, this place is just as beautiful as Lake Verity.” Ash commented. Riolu looked at Ash with a slightly confused expression. “Oh that’s right Riolu, I forgot that you were just an egg back then. I guess we’ll have to take you back there sometime so you can see it.”
Just then, Ash glanced out over the lake and saw a bright blue light rise out from the center. After a moment the light took the shape of a creature with a pointed head and two long tails. The creature of light hovered above the lake for a moment before quickly flying away.
“What was that?” Ash asked. “Was that a Pokemon?”
“That was Azelf.” A familiar voice suddenly answered. Ash, Pikachu, and Riolu turned around to see Cyrus standing nearby.
“Hi Cyrus.” Ash greeted. “You know about that Pokemon?”
“That I do.” Cyrus said as he approached. “It is one of the guardians of Sinnoh’s three lakes.”
“Guardians of the lakes?” Ash asked.
“That’s right. Professor Carolina told you the story Dialga and Palkia, correct?” Cyrus replied.
“Yeah, she said they were the guardians of time and space.” Ash answered.
“There is more to the story she did not tell you.” Cyrus revealed. “The same great power that created Dialga and Palkia also created three other Pokemon, representing the aspect of Spirit in living things. The three Pokemon are Uxie, the representation of knowledge, Azelf, the representation of willpower, and Mesprit, the representation of emotion. It is also said that these three Pokemon fell asleep beneath three lakes in the Sinnoh Region.”
“So that’s why Professor Rowan’s been helping you study Lake Verity.” Ash realized. “So you can find out more about the Lake Guardians.”
“Quite right, and I believe the arrival of your friend Misty at Lake Verity awoke its guardian, Mesprit. Just as your arrival here at Lake Valor has awoken Azelf.” Cyrus theorized. “The two of you seem to have attributes that the Lake Guardians have reacted to. Which means that the arrival of the right person at Sinnoh’s third great lake, Lake Acuity, might just awaken the third guardian, Uxie.”
“An interesting theory.” A familiar voice cut in. Ash and the others turned to see Riley and Lucario. “And just what do you intend to do with this knowledge Mr. Cyrus?”
“Mr. Riley wasn’t it? My ultimate goal from studying the Lake Guardians is to find a way to create a new and better world for all of us.” Cyrus replied.
“I see… and just what sort of world to you plan to create?” Riley asked with a suspicious eye. “Everyone has their own idea of a better world should be. Your idea might not be one that everyone likes.”
“You raise an interesting point.” Cyrus replied. “If you must know, the world I plan to create is one free of war and conflict.”
“The world seems pretty peaceful to me as is.” Riley retorted. “There hasn’t been a war in ages.”
“True, but then there are groups like Team Rocket who continue to cause conflict.” Cyrus pointed out. “Groups of people like them continue to cause conflict each day. And while there are no wars there are still common criminals, and places where people feud with one another over trivial things. Perhaps this world is not as peaceful as you think Mr. Riley.”
“Maybe not, but it doesn’t seem like you’re telling us your whole plan.” Riley told him. “Just how do you plan to create this new world of yours?”
“You will find that out in time Mr. Riley.” Cyrus replied. “But for now I must be going. I have business to attend to elsewhere. Perhaps all our paths will cross again in the near future.”
With that, Cyrus began to walk off. All the while Riley and Lucario were giving Riley a suspicious eye.
“Hey Riley,” Ash spoke up, getting his mentor’s attention, “what do you have against Cyrus? He’s just trying to make the world a better place.”
“Weren’t you listening to any of that conversation?” Riley asked. “We don’t know anything about what Cyrus is planning to do. And his interest in the Legendary Pokemon of Sinnoh is a little suspicious.”
“But you seem to think that Cyrus is up to know good.” Ash pointed out. “What I want to know is why?”
“Look, I’m not saying that Cyrus is plotting something bad, all I’m saying is that his actions seem suspicious.” Riley told him. “And there’s another reason why Lucario and I suspect Cyrus of something. Read his Aura the next time you see him, you’ll understand then.”
With that, Riley and Lucario walked off. Meanwhile Ash turned back to face the lake with Pikachu and Riolu to think. Ash still could not quite understand what reason why Riley thought Cyrus was up to no good, yet he could not deny that there was something fishy about just why Cyrus was interested was interested in the Lake Guardians.
“Hey.” A familiar voice called. Ash turned to see Misty standing behind him. “Mind if I join you?”
“Not at all.” Ash replied, and with that Misty took a spot next to Ash. “So what brings you here?”
“I just came by to see what you and Riley were doing.” Misty explained. “I overheard some of what you and Riley were talking about with Cyrus.”
“Oh…” Ash responded.
“So do you think Riley might be right about Cyrus?” Misty asked. “I mean he made some good points.”
“Yeah, but I’m still not sure what to think though.” Ash answered. “I still can’t picture Cyrus being up to know good, but then I really don’t think that Riley would be suspicious of him without a good reason.”
“You really look up to Riley, don’t you?” Misty observed.
“Yeah, he’s taught me a lot.” Ash admitted. “I wouldn’t even know about this power if it wasn’t for him. And… he kinda reminds me a little of my dad. At least I think he does.”
“How long has it been since you’ve seen your dad?” Misty asked.
“A really long time.” Ash answered. “It’s been so long I don’t remember too much about him. But he left to become a Pokemon Master just like I did.”
“I see… well I’m sure your dad’s proud of you wherever he is.” Misty assured him.
“I’d like to think so too.” Ash agreed. “Well, we should probably get going now if we want to get to the next town before the end of the day.”
* * *
Meanwhile, not too far away from Lake Valor, Cyrus entered a large black helicopter that was awaiting him in a clearing. As soon as he boarded the chopper it took of. Once in the air, Cyrus reached into his coat pocket and pulled out a cell phone, after which he dialed a certain number.
“Saturn here sir.” A voice on the other end of the phone once it had stopped ringing.
“Our suspicions about Lake Valor have proven correct. Azelf is there and it has been awakened by that boy, Ash Ketchum.” Cyrus said into the phone.
“You mean that brat who mistook me for a woman? How interesting.” Saturn replied. “What are your orders, sir?”
“Send some agents to Lake Valor to begin setting up for Phase Three.” Cyrus ordered. “While you’re at it you might as well send some agents to Lake Acuity to set up as well. It’s logical to assume that Uxie is there since its brethren have confirmed to be at the other two lakes. In the meantime, you, Mars, and Jupiter head to Iron Island to begin Phase Two.”
“It shall be done right away sir.” Saturn replied.