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TRANSFORMATION

When I close my eyes, I can feel it. I am a powerful Lucario, locked in battle against a towering Steelix, gazing down at me with its cold, steel eyes. I can feel my trainer’s heart beating in time with my own.

"Steelix," commands the opposing trainer, "Use Flamethrower!"

The Steel-type Pokémon, slithering towards me, opens its maw to spit out a stream of hot fire. I don't need my trainer's command to dodge it perfectly, jumping to the side and rolling away without a single scratch.

"Nice job Lucario! Now use Aura Sphere!"

I close my eyes, gather my energy and focus it into a ball in-between my paws. With one swift motion, I fire the ball towards my opponent. Their attempts to dodge are futile; the ball makes impact and…

"Brandon! Get up or you'll be late for school!"

"Ughhaaa… what?"

And that’s when I woke up; the familiar voice of my dad calling from the hallway snapping me out of my dream. I turned my head sleepily towards the alarm clock on my bed: 6:30 AM on a school day. I groaned as I covered my head with my pillow.  

My name is Brandon; I’m fifteen years old, live on Long Island, New York, and I’m a total Pokémon geek. My favorite Pokémon, if you couldn’t tell, is Lucario. I don’t know why, but I’ve always had a soft spot for the blue jackal, and I’ve always felt a connection to it, real or not.

As I took my morning shower, trying to wash off the drowsiness, I thought of the dream I had. Normally the hot water would have erased the memory of my dreams, but this one stuck. It felt so vivid; I could easily recall the feelings of power and pride, and they stuck with me. It wouldn't go away even as I got dressed, ate breakfast and got to class five minutes before the bell rang. But at the end of the day, it was all just a dream, and life had to continue.

However, sitting in class, the feelings started shifting into my hands, like a hot energy was circulating around my palms and spreading through my fingers. It stayed with me thought the school day, in the afternoon when I was playing on my DS, at swim practice, while watching TV at home and finally when I went to bed.

Little did I know how much my life would change over the course of a single day; my entire world as I knew it would be flipped upside down, and I’d begin the adventure of a lifetime…

I woke the next morning I aroused from slumber to find the strange feeling was gone. I smiled as I shuffled in bed; it was a Saturday, my parents were out of town, and I had the house to myself. Eager to get the day started I yanked the covers off. Then I caught a glimpse of my hands.

They were Lucario paws. Somehow, beyond all comprehension my human hands had been replaced by paws. They were covered with black fur; I only counted six fingers, not to mention the giant spike sticking out of the back. I stared at them in shock.

"No…this has to be another dream…yeah that’s it, I’m dreaming!"

I jabbed myself with my spikes. Yes, I felt it, and yes, it hurt. I did everything, but I just proved that I was wide-awake. I tried to pull on the fur, but it clung to my skin. It was as if someone had superglued costume paws to my hands, and they wouldn’t come off.  

I continued to stare at my hands, evading the rising panic, until I heard a knock at the door. Without thinking, I opened it to find a pizza delivery man standing on my porch.

“Uh, hi? I said awkwardly.

He didn’t say anything.

“Did…did my parents order this for me? Except I don’t think they left any money…”

The pizza guy was still eerily silent, to the point where I became nervous. It was only by following his gaze I culd see he was staring directly at my new paws.

“Oh these,” I said, quickly trying to hind them behind my back, “These are just some gloves I made for…I think you have the wrong address…I’m just going to…”

"You're one of them."

“Wha-?”

The delivery man opened the pizza box and before I could shut the door, my senses were flooded by a purple gas and that's the last thing I could remember before darkness swept over me.

I woke up sometime later. At first I was all dizzy and everything wouldn't focus correctly, but I felt the floor moving underneath me. I tried to move, to even rub my eyes, but my arms were pinned to my sides. Suddenly everything snapped back into focus and I realized where I was. I was chained up and apparently I was in the back of a moving truck.

"Hey! Let me out!" I yelled at the top of my lungs. No one answered. I tried to break free but I couldn't move my arms or legs, leaving me unable to even stand up. After a few minutes of struggling, I gave up trying to escape and I was left to think what was happening. Where were these guys taking me? Why have a pizza guy kidnap me? And what was with my hands? They weren’t really Lucario paws right? Pokémon are just video game characters after all…they didn’t really exist, did they?

I started to hear the pitter-patter of rain on the roof and I let out a long sigh. There was nothing I could do in my current situation, all I could do is close my eyes and hope that this nightmare would end soon…

Hours passed, and I was trying to get some sleep. Suddenly I heard a loud BOOM noise, and the truck started swerving. I was jostled and jolted around as the truck lost stability and I came to the sickening realization that we must’ve gotten into an accident. With a loud sickening CRASH I was thrown from the floor where I hit the ceiling and smacked back onto the side wall, where the truck finally came to a stop on its side.

"Owww…what's going-"

Suddenly the doors of the truck burst open and from the smoke and wreckage a figure appeared. I couldn't believe what I was seeing…it was a Grovyle. A real life Grovyle, like from the games, except he was real.

“You’re a…y-you’re a…”

"Come on kid! We don't have all day!" he called, climbing over to be

I was stunned. "You-You can talk?"

The Grovyle came over and used Leaf Blade to slash the chains off, where they fell to my side. Before I could process my newly found freedom, he grabbed my arm and pulled me out of the truck.

"Come on, get up, we have to run, we can’t let them catch us!"

It was dark and raining hard; instantly I was soaked thoroughly, the water drenching my clothes and soaking into my shoes. I could see headlights approaching the truck as I made out in the light that we were surrounded by a group of men in black outfits.

“FREEZE SCUM!” one of them called out, brandishing a gun that was aimed squarely at my head.

"Kid, grab on to me and don't let go," the Grovyle whispered, “I won’t let anything happen to you.”

This was absolutely crazy; but had no choice but to obey. I grabbed onto his shoulders and held on tightly.

"Agility!"

The Grovyle kicked off the ground and started running at an incredible speed through the woods. I was holding on for dear life as he leapt through the trees, avoiding shrubbery and leaving the men biting the dust. I shut my eyes, the wind rushing through my hair, the rain stinging me as we dashed through the dark forest. After a while, he told me to get off, and I climbed off him. Grabbing his claw, we trek through the muddy forest. I had no idea where we were, where I was going, or even if I could trust this strange creature. But again, I had no choice but to go along with it.

After half-an-hour of running, we made it to a small clearing. In the center of the clearing was a large mass of boulders.

"Alright kid," said the Grovyle, "We're almost there, sanctuary lies just ahead."

I was really starting to feel dizzy and light-headed; the excitement of seeing my hands replaced with Lucario paws, being kidnapped, getting thrown around like a wet rag in a truck, being rescued by a real Grovyle, hearing it talk and all of that running in the cold, wet rain put me into shock. My vision grew blurry as the rush of adrenaline wore off and blackness started to shroud me.  

"Kid? Kid? Are you okay?" was the last thing I heard before I slipped into peaceful darkness, again.

Then I snapped awake.

"Oh man, was it just another…"

I saw my hands and it stopped my sentence short. They were still Lucario paws.

"No way, it wasn't a dream after all…"

I tried to sit up, but a searing pain in my body forced me back down. For the first time I noticed I wasn't in my bedroom. The ceiling was rocky, like a cave, and from the line of beds, it appeared I was in some sort of hospital wing. Various Pokémon scurried along wearing white nurse's coats. Again, real Pokémon, I couldn’t believe it. I started to rub my eyes before I noticed the steel spike sticking out from the back of my hands and thought better of it.  

"Where-where am I?"

Well, well, well, it seems our little Snorlax has woken up hasn't he?"

I turned my head and saw a Blissey standing next to me. I almost sat up again, but I was forced back down by the soreness. This one talked too, just like the Grovyle, but I wasn’t as shocked the second time around.

My mind was racing and I started to bombard her with questions before I could stop myself. "Where am I? What's happening to me? Why am I-,"

"Shush!" she interrupted, in a sweet, yet impatient voice. "Settle down or you're going to knock yourself out again."

Before I could open my mouth again she reached into her pouch and pulled out a candy bar with a green wrapper, "Eat this, it’ll give you back your strength."

I reached out, taking the bar in my new paw, and I fumbled with the wrapper. I had no idea how to use these paws, I lacked thumbs and my fingers were fused together. Sighing impatiently, the Blissey unwrapped it for me, “I suppose you need time to get used to those new hands of yours.”

Sheepishly, I took back the bar and took a small bite of the candy. A warm sensation rushed throughout my body and I quickly wolfed it down.

"Hey! Slow down so you don't choke!"

I couldn't stop myself; it felt like I hadn’t eaten in days. After swallowing the last mouthful, I let out a contented sigh, whatever it was; it had returned some of my energy back.

"My, you're recovering faster than most of our other patients," the nurse said, checking her clipboard, "Especially one who's been knocked out for two days."

“Oh…I guess that’s not so b-did you say two days?!”

The pain returned and I had to stop myself from freaking out any further. I took a deep, calming breath before slowly asking, "Can you please tell me what's going on? Why are there Pokémon in the real world?"

The nurse gave me another candy bar, "Patience, you are still too weak, get some rest and your questions will be answered soon."

From another part of the wing, what looked like a Sunflora yelled, "Nurse! Nurse! Our scouts found a pre-transformed Vulpix! She's in critical condition!"

The Blissey told me to get some sleep and quickly scurried off to help the Vulpix. I nibbled on the candy, my head full of questions. I wanted to know everything that was happening to me but I was still hurting, so I couldn't do anything. I finished the bar, put my head back on the pillow and slowly drifted to sleep; wondering what was in store for me later.

I didn’t get much sleep, or if I did, it wasn’t restful. Part of me heard and saw the Blissey tending to my body, while the subconscious of me was flashing back to the truck I was held in and the forest where I ran with that mysterious Grovyle. A few days later, the pain had faded away and I was able to sit up on my own. I noticed blue fur had spread up my arms while I was asleep, and when I lifted my shirt up, cream-colored fur was growing on my belly and torso. I could feel a hard bump slowly forming on the center of my chest-I knew it was going to eventually become a spike.

I had time finally to get a good look at my surroundings; the hospital wing I was in was full of normal everyday Pokémon and half-human half-Pokémon. To my left was a boy who had an Aron's face and to my right was a girl who had sprouted Butterfree wings. This whole situation was still really confusing, and still nobody had provided me with an adequate answer as to what was going on. That is until the nurse came up to me and told me I had a visitor.

"A visitor, who is it?"

She stepped aside and standing at the foot of my bed was the Grovyle.

"It's you, the one who saved me," I said.

"Yeah, it's me," he said, smiling in a confident yet not arrogant manner, "You don't have to thank me, it's my job."

I started to ask questions again but he put up a claw. "Whoa, slow down kid, you didn't even let me introduce myself. I'm Reggie, a member of the Pokéuman Rescue Troop. And this is the Long Island Pokéuman Base, your new home!"

"Poké-uman?"  I asked. The term was completely new to me. I've heard of Pokémorph but I've never heard of a Pokéuman, “And what do you mean by ‘new home?’”

He stopped me short again. "Look, I know you're confused and all, but your questions will be answered soon. The headmistress says she wanted to see you as soon as you woke up; she usually likes to introduce herself."

The nurse Blissey ran a quick checkup and said I was well enough to walk. "Here kid, follow me," said Reggie. "Don't worry about the others staring, soon you'll be just like them."

After managing to stand up shakily, Reggie and I left the hospital wing and we walked down a corridor. From what I could tell, the whole place was situated underground. Different Pokémon ran past us, some giving me quick glances before continuing onward.

"Reggie, where am I?" I finally asked.

He shot a glance at me. "As I mentioned before, this is our Pokéuman base. This place is for Pokémon like you and me."

"Wait a second, does that mean you were also human once?"

“Yeah, I was.”

Reggie’s expression dampened a little. He stared into space and spoke with a voice that wasn't truly there.

"I'll never forget that day; I was fourteen and living a normal life when I saw my skin turning green. I remember when they took me and threw me into a truck, tied up, helpless."

The Grovyle paused for a moment before he spoke again, a lot more down to Earth than before.

"I'm just lucky I grew these…" indicating his arm leaves with a smirk, "…just in time. I was able to escape and after two days of wandering in the woods I was found by a member of the base and he took me here."

I looked at Reggie for a while, and really tried to think about what he had been through. I bet he was just as scared as I was then, but now here he was helping others in need.

He shook his head a little, "Look kid, what happened to me is in the past, we need to worry about you."

"Okay, but don't call me ‘kid’; it’s Brandon."

"Well, lets see what we can do about you Brandon, okay?"

I smiled; having someone to look up to as a friend was definitely comforting.

Reggie and I didn't say anything after that; mainly because I was too shocked at what I was seeing. There were real Pokémon, walking and talking down hallways and holding books like teens in high school. All of them, they must’ve been human too at one point. But what happened? And what was happening to me? Would I join them? What was going to become of my life if I did turn into a Pokémon?

I was so distracted by the questions in my head that I failed to notice we’d arrived at the main hall. It was huge; two giant staircases went down to a giant fountain in the middle, and at the entrance was a doorway with a giant Poké Ball painted on it. Apparently a lot of Pokémon gathered here. Reggie led me down the stairs and we headed for the headmistress' office. Along the way I bumped into a female Lucario and she bounced off me and dropped the books she had been carrying.

"Oh man, I'm really sorry!" I dropped down and helped her pick up her things.

"Don't worry about it," said the Lucario back. She looked at my arms. "You're a Lucario huh? Well congratulations, I look forward to seeing you in battle class."

She winked at me and walked away, leaving me blushing. I felt my heart beating in my chest and my face was red. It was crazy but…she was rather cute. I shook my head, “I must be going native…”

"Hey Brandon! Come on!" called Reggie, beckoning me over towards the headmistress’ office.

I regained my senses and ran over towards him and froze when I saw the door we had stopped at. It was the most magnificent door I had ever seen in my life. It had a stain glass picture many different kinds of Pokémon (including some I have never seen before) in bright glimmering colors.

"Here we are Brandon,” the Grovyle exclaimed, “Don’t be nervous, our headmistress is very kind towards the newbies...as long as you don’t make her mad."

He knocked on the door a few times and said, "Headmistress, it's me, Reggie. I've brought him."

We waited for a few seconds, feeling my anxiety growing with each second. After what seemed to be forever, the door slowly swung open. On the other side of the door was an office. The place was made of pure, sparkling crystal. There was a desk, a mirror, a few velvet chairs, a large tank of water and other things. A large office chair had its back turned towards us.

"Hello Brandon," said in kind, warm and alluring voice, "I've been expecting you."

The chair swung around and I saw the most beautiful Pokémon I’ve ever seen, and it took me a moment to register that it was a Milotic. Her scales shone in a rainbow sheen, her eyes twinkled, and for some reason she was wearing what looked like a metal ring with two arms attached to both sides.

"Have a seat," she said. Even her voice was stunning; it was almost as if she’d sung every word up until that point. I pointedly sat in one of the chairs at the base of the desk.  

"My name is Asula, if you haven't guessed I'm the leader of this Pokéuman base. Would you like a drink?"

“Uh…Coke please?”

The Water Pokémon glided towards a mini fridge, pulled out a can of cola and gave it to me. I really wanted to ask her what was going on, but the words weren't coming out. I popped it open and took a tiny sip, the familiar fizziness the one point of stability in the insanity I’ve experienced so far.

Asula sat down at her desk and gave me a serious look. "I know you have many questions, and I know how scared and confused you must be, but I'm going to tell you a story, a three-part story. I kindly ask you to refrain from asking any questions. Hopefully by the time it's finished, you'll fully understand everything you want to know."

I shuffled uncomfortably in my seat and looked up at her, “Okay.”

"Long ago, before the age of the humans but just after the dinosaurs went extinct, Pokémon walked the Earth. Unlike the Pokémon you are familiar with, our game counterparts; they were the most intelligent species on the planet. They could adapt to any environment and smart enough to build advanced technologies using ordinary materials. Even we don’t know how they first arrived; popular theories are they came from bacteria in space, or evolved mutations, but none the less, Pokémon were the dominant species of primal Earth. We call this time “The Lost Era,” because it has mainly been forgotten by history.

These times marked by peace and happiness. After a few centuries, the first humans began to evolve from the Neanderthals. The original Pokémon were cautious around them, but realized that they were less intelligent than they were. Using their advanced technology, the Pokémon created a rock that could change them into humans. Under their human guises, most of them helped the humans gain knowledge; acting as muses that helped steer humanity in the proper direction. Some even started families with the humans, abandoning their ways to help the human population grow.

However, as humans grew, they became smarter and more devious and cunning. They began to find ways to use Pokémon for their own selfish means, creating weapons to hold them against their will and force them to use their abilities for their own selfish needs. One day, the Pokémon rebelled, blossoming into an all out war that left many injured and hurt.

The Pokémon couldn't take it anymore, so they decided to leave. They decided to erase themselves from the world and leave humanity to rule, hoping that they would destroy themselves.

They destroyed any and all evidence of their existence, excavating fossils, leaving no trace of their involvement on Earth. Utilizing Uxie and the Beheeyam, they created a world-wide memory wipe to erase their existence to humans of the world so that they would never remember them. Families were torn apart as Pokémon families were forced to separate from their human partners. The Legendary Pokémon combined their powers to open a giant portal to another dimension, and over time, all Pokémon crossed to the other side. They did however leave the mystical Pokémon Mew behind to watch the humans to make sure they were truly forgotten. The Mew wanders the Earth to this day under many different guises. For a long time, nothing happened. Humans managed to evolve on their own and civilization developed without the help of the Pokémon.

Now, you must be wondering why humans are turning into Pokémon. That started with an event that happened a hundred years ago. A man under the name Mr. X had accidentally discovered the hair of the Mew while on a jungle excursion. Mr. X was a scientist genius; conducting experiments on cloning, memory and genetic manipulation. However he was condemned by the majority population, leaving him to set up a secret research lab of the coast on a uninhabited island.

Mr. X and his fellow scientists were working on a machine that would turn the smallest particle of DNA into the respective creature it came from. Unfortunately, there was an accident, and it caused a nuclear reaction. All but Mr. X and another worker were instantly vaporized, but when the smoke cleared, Mr. X had been afflicted by the mutant DNA and turned into a Mewtwo. With his transformation, a dark and primal side was unlocked. With his new power, he sought to take over the world…

However the effects of his experiment reached farther than anyone could’ve expected. The genetic shockwave circled the world, activating long dormant genes, and causing the human hosts to physically transform into the Pokémon of their ancestors. You see, when the Pokémon used their technology to turn themselves into humans, a gene was passed down to their children. The genetic shockwave altered the gene, causing it to recreate the cells of Pokémon and gradually take over the human host.

Noticing this, Mr. X had a plan; he would capture the transformed humans and experiment on them, and eventually build up an unstoppable army of power monsters that would overthrow humanity, and allow Pokémon to become the dominant species again under his rule. To achieve this however, he needed to do this in secret, and managed to develop a way to brainwash ordinary citizens into being his personal Pokémon detectors. He also invented a memory alternator, to cover up his actions. Over time he built internment camps to house the captured Pokéumans and morph them into his soldiers. This became the Pokéxtinction organization; the men who tried to kidnap you are part of it.

Fortunately, the Mew saw what had happened and was determined to revive the Pokémon population. He helped rescue the kidnapped children. Unfortunately he was unable to reverse the effects of the memory alternator with such a disorganized group, so he decided to start the Pokéumans organization. The organization takes in Pokéumans and trains them to fight the Pokéxtinction organization, adapt to their new lives, and helps them develop their abilities.

A hundred years later and a secret war is still being fought today. Mr. X prevents the world from discovering Pokémon, as he does not want anyone else utilizing them. The organization can create clones of the humans before they transform and fill them with memories and the personalities of the Pokéuman they are kidnapping to take his or her place; as such it’s as if they never transformed in the first place.

On the good side, Mew took on a human identity. You may know him as Satoshi Tajiri, the creator of the Pokémon games. He created the games for two reasons: he wanted to make the world slightly aware of the existence of Pokémon, and for another reason. A sign of being a Pokéuman is being a devoted Pokémon fan and having a particular attachment to a specific Pokémon; that's how we knew that you were one of us. You know a lot about Pokémon. We, the Pokéumans, have thousands of secret underground bases where we take in our students and train them to stop the Pokéxtinction organization and prove to the world that Pokémon are alive."

Asula took a deep breath and said, "Well I hope that little story helps you understand everything."

The entire story was insane. I couldn't believe it; I couldn't believe it at all, but given everything I had seen, everything I had been through, it made sense.

"So…does that mean they replaced me with a clone?"

Asula shook her head sadly. "Yes, you will never be able to go back home again. I’m really sorry, this is the hardest part of my job, but there is no way to return to your old life…”

I felt that icy cold sudden shock again. My parents, my friends, I would never see them again. I didn’t know whether or not to laugh or cry.
         
Asula slid over to me and gingerly rested her metallic hand on my shoulder, "I see a lot of potential in you Brandon. I know having to leave everything behind is hard, but you’ll find solace here. Here we can help you discover who you are, what you were meant to be this whole time. And maybe, you’ll come to like being a Pokémon. Give it a chance, and I know that this will be the best thing that has ever happened to you.”

I nodded, “I understand…I’m…I’m ready to jump into this, whatever may lay ahead, I can handle it…”

The Milotic smiled warmly, “You still need to finish your transformation first, we can’t have you running around while you’re still half-human."

"How long will it take for me to be a full Lucario?" I asked.

"Let's see," Asula said, "it'll take about another week at the rate you're going."

"A whole week!?" I yelped. "I don't want to wait a whole week! Can't you make it go faster?"
Asula started to think out loud. "Well, hmmm, will it work? Yes, I think that will work," she mumbled to herself.

"Well normally we can't do anything to speed up the process, but you're a Lucario, there might be a way to ‘manipulate’ the transformation; we can get one of our trained Lucario to speed up the changes."

She headed over to a microphone. Before she turned it on, she turned towards me, "The transformation is permanent, once you're a Pokémon you're staying a Pokémon. Are you sure you don't want to remain human for a little longer?"

I sighed, and told her this: "Asula, I've never been good at anything, except Pokémon. I'm the slowest swimmer on my team, I hardly pass school, and I never feel like I belong anywhere. But this, this is the greatest thing that could ever happen to me. I'm not a very good human, so I need to find out right now how well of a Pokémon I can be. I might as well shed my human form as quickly as possible, like ripping off a bandage from a wound.”

“That’s very brave of you,” she replied, “A lot of people react differently, some are reluctant to go through with it, others jump headlong into it, and some come to accept it over time. But it seems you’re one of the eager ones, and that is admirable.”

The Milotic turned on the microphone and spoke into it. "Excuse me students, this is Asula, your headmistress. Will the Lucario, Starr, report to my office right away?"

A few minutes later a familiar Lucario stepped into the office.  "Yes headmistress, you wanted to see–" she stopped her sentence short when she saw me.

My face reddened involuntarily, "You're uh, the Lucario I bumped into earlier."

"Well, I didn't expect to run into you again so quickly," she said with a playful tone, "You're really cute when you're embarrassed!"

The redness intensified and I had to yank on my collar to release the sweat.

I finally managed to get a good look at her; she was about as tall as I was, maybe a bit taller. She was a Lucario in everyway, with a slim build and scarlet eyes that shone.

"Starr has been training for about two years now and she's mastered aura manipulation," Asula told me.

I stared at Starr, getting this weird feeling as I looked. I guess she was feeling the same way.

"Starr, our friend wants to speed up his transformation, I'm sure you know what to do.”

The Lucario walked up to me and gave a smile. "I suggest removing your clothes unless you want to tear out of them."

I started to blush again, not wanting to strip in front of two girls, "No I'm fine! I don't mind."

Starr held my hands; I mean paws, and closed her eyes. Her aura sensors began to float. I saw her aura, a light blue color, and then I saw mine, a golden yellow. I saw her aura flow into me.

"Don't worry," Starr said, "It won't hurt, though you may feel a little itch."

At once, I began to feel the changes happening to me.        

The nub on my chest expanded into a sharp spike and tore my shirt off. I was too shocked at what was happening to say anything. My shoes burst off as my feet turned into paws and my weight was centered at the balls of my feet while black fur continued up my legs. I staggered a little but Starr kept me from falling down. I shot a look at Asula; she was smiling proudly. I felt a bump near the end of my spine. Then the bump extended and tore off my shorts and formed into a blue, long and powerful tail with a tip pointing down. I was able to stand without wobbling and found that my new tail was helping me balance on my feet. More blue fur grew around my legs, like a pair of furry blue shorts.

I looked at the mirror and stared at myself just in time to see my face push out into a muzzle and more blue fur grow along the sides of my face. My teeth sharpened into fangs, my ears grew up to the top of my head and pointed. Black fur started to grow around my eyes, the middle of my head and down to my nose, meeting at the back of my head as my hair receded into my head. I closed my eyes, just to make sure I wasn't dreaming. When I opened them, I saw my eyes had changed from a chocolate brown to a scarlet red and my pupils shape changed into slits. Last but not least, four aura sensors grew from the back of my head, and dangled from my scalp, swishing around and hitting my shoulders. I couldn’t believe it, it couldn’t be true but, it was! I was a Lucario! Starr let go of my hands and smiled.

"Well, how do you feel?" asked Asula.

I stared at the Lucario in the mirror. I looked at my paws, the spikes and my tail. I rubbed by body, then rubbed my face. I couldn't think straight. I felt powerful in my new form, almost like there was nothing that I couldn't do. I stumbled a bit, trying to get used to the new weight and foot structure. It felt so strange, I was in a completely different body, yet it felt so…good! It felt familiar, it felt right! It felt as if I have taken off a mascot costume and could breathe again!  

"I'm-I'm," I stuttered.

"A Lucario," Starr finished for me, "And a pretty handsome looking one too."

At that moment Reggie came into the office, "Headmistress Asula, we need-"

He stopped when he saw me. "Brandon, is that you?!"

"Yup, I'm not a kid anymore am I?"

The Grovyle smiled as he came over and shook my paw, "Welcome to the team, Brandon, as of today, you’re an official Pokéuman."

Asula came over to me gave me a schedule and a map of the base. "You're sharing a room with Starr, and starting tomorrow you're attending classes, we’re going to help you become strong. You're heading into a brand new life, you're going to experience all new things and be faced with many challenges, are you sure you're ready?"

I looked at her, then at Starr, then at Reggie and then at myself in the mirror. All the faces told the exact same thing. This was my new life. I had been given this incredible gift, and the possibilities stretched out towards the infinite. I had no idea what was going to happen next, but all I knew was I couldn’t wait to find out.

This was a new beginning for me.

I closed my eyes, and smiled.  

"I'm ready."
Well this is it. This is my newest project: Pokeumans Remastered. It has been a long time since I wrote this series. It's taken my places I could've never thought I could go; it's made me friends I wouldn't know what I'd do without, it's gotten me so much attention and admiration.

But at the same time I have been afraid of it for a long time. My 15 year old self was a pretty crappy writer, and my 23 year old self looks on these old chapters with disdain. So, in an effort to correct the wrongs of the past and help rebuild the future of Pokeumans, I'm making like the movie and video game industry and remastering the Original Series (except I won't be charging microtransactions for it)

So my plan is to go back and rewrite the old chapters, possibly up to Chapter 13 or 14. Basically I'm retconning a lot of older details, removing the unnecessary stuff, fixing the spacing issues and cleaning up the writing. I'm a lot wiser now than I used to be, and part of the reason I haven't worked on this series in so long is the mistakes of the past haunted me. 

I'm still keeping some of the old characters, I'm still following the same story, it'll just be...better. I'm also not deleting any of the old chapters. They are there and will always be. But consider this the improved and more polished version, and anything I write here will override the canon of older chapters.

My plan is to remake one chapter every two weeks or so. Maybe I'll fall off and miss out on a week, maybe I'll give up entirely. Depending on the reaction I get I could be motivated to do more or retreat back into my cave.

But this is the first step of getting back on the Pokeumans train. It has been a long time, and I hope I can rediscover the magic along the way. 
Add a Comment:
 
:iconblazzer2003:
Blazzer2003 Featured By Owner May 7, 2019
Will there be cameos?
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:iconpokemonmanic3595:
pokemonmanic3595 Featured By Owner May 7, 2019  Student Writer
Depends. If they aren’t story relevant then no
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:iconbonemarrowmack:
bonemarrowmack Featured By Owner Feb 14, 2019
I frickin’ love this man! How come I never saw this before????
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:iconcamille-aokishi:
Camille-Aokishi Featured By Owner Jan 24, 2019  Hobbyist Writer
If that's okay with you, I think I'll use the remastered chapters for a french translation.
Reply
:iconbloodybello:
Bloodybello Featured By Owner Jan 23, 2019  Hobbyist Writer
Do you have a beta reader? If no, you need one, or read over your chapter a few more times. If yes, well... you might get someone else to do it.
I'd volunteer, actually. Not because I want to read the next remastered chapter before everyone else, mind you, but something remastered should be mostly free of errors (especially those that should be really easy to spot), right?
Don't get me wrong: I love what you've created, and I really want to get into this story again, but it's kinda hard for me to do that with those errors around.
Reply
:iconhpmccpootis:
HPMCCPooTis Featured By Owner Jan 6, 2019
If it’s not too late, PLZ CONTINUE WITH THIS SERIES!!! It’s one of the best stories I read on DeviantArt
Reply
:iconbenmeman:
BenMeman Featured By Owner Jan 3, 2019
This was actually an emotional rollercoaster. I remember reading the first one of these a long time ago. It’s really amazing to see how far you’ve come as a writer, how your stories have flourished, but it feels even more amazing to know that you’ve planted a new seed, one that I’m sure will come to fruition. I cherish your stories because they’ve had a minor affect on my life, but also because I got to see you adapt as a writer, and delve deep into the inner machinations of your mind. I’ll never stop reading these. 
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:iconbenmeman:
BenMeman Featured By Owner Jan 3, 2019
Just seeing the word “remastered” made my heart flutter. Anyway, I’d like you to know that your work here on Deviantart was a huge inspiration for me. I actually referenced you (kinda) following a quote in my college essay. I wrote what amounted to a “writers motif”. Thanks for always writing for us Brandon!
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:iconphilichez:
PhiliChez Featured By Owner Nov 30, 2018  Professional Digital Artist
I never finished reading this back in the day. Maybe I will with this. Who knows.
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:iconironfist296:
Ironfist296 Featured By Owner Nov 27, 2018
Yes!
Brandon is writing again!
Praise (I dunno? Arceus?)
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:icondjangod51:
djangod51 Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2018
Happy this is back
Reply
:iconjoshsucks:
joshsucks Featured By Owner Nov 22, 2018
I’m really glad this is coming back. I have found this story to be he best I have read in all my time in DeviantArt. I’m glad that you can come up with the courage to continue this series after you thought that it wasn’t going to get better I envy you.
Reply
:icondfhsuaifjn:
dfhsuaifjn Featured By Owner Nov 16, 2018
Brandon. You nor I can fathom the spark that you have reignited in my soul. Reading this brings me back, brings memories back, and I am so, so excited to read more.

Love you

- a veteran
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:iconlornext:
Lornext Featured By Owner Nov 16, 2018
It was fun to read this after so long~
Reply
:iconpokemonmanic3595:
pokemonmanic3595 Featured By Owner Nov 16, 2018  Student Writer
Hey buddy, missed ya~ :hug:
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:iconlornext:
Lornext Featured By Owner Nov 16, 2018
Missed you too! ^^
It's pretty funny to look at all that old stuff after so many years.
Reply
:iconpfaccioxx:
Pfaccioxx Featured By Owner Edited Nov 13, 2018   General Artist
I'm looking forward to seeing this progress

I swear, if you complete this remaster I will go out of my way to resume work on my Pokeumans Jacks Ordeal & Sparkler storys... come January... or at least finish witting out the 1st run draft scripts for them... eventually... probably... unless I get distracted by other stuff in the process... <_<;

I SWEAR I'M GOING TO RESUME WORK ON THOSE 1 DAY (probably, at least I reely want to)

...*slunks back into the shadows to resume work on a blatantly not Pokeumans related project in shame*
Reply
:iconplanetgiga:
PlanetGiga Featured By Owner Nov 11, 2018  Student Writer
Hopefully this project can go all the way as proposed.
Reply
:iconpokemonmanic3595:
pokemonmanic3595 Featured By Owner Nov 13, 2018  Student Writer
I can try
Reply
:iconhpmccpootis:
HPMCCPooTis Featured By Owner Dec 19, 2018
no need to try, just do however much u want/can (to me at least)
Reply
:iconlegomaster64:
LEGOmaster64 Featured By Owner Nov 11, 2018  Student Writer
Gosh darn it...
Now I'm motivated to start writing again! I've got to continue my story because of you!
Also, good to see you writing again. ;)
Reply
:iconlrpaul:
LRpaul Featured By Owner Nov 11, 2018  Student Digital Artist
Time to find my way back into this world, I guess :)
Reply
:iconpokemonmanic3595:
pokemonmanic3595 Featured By Owner Nov 12, 2018  Student Writer
It’s been a long time
Reply
:iconsnowflurry12345:
SnowFlurry12345 Featured By Owner Nov 10, 2018
Congrats on the new project! Just from this start, I can tell this is gonna be a great reboot! Im so excited to see how it goes! Good Luck Buddy!
Reply
:iconpokemonmanic3595:
pokemonmanic3595 Featured By Owner Edited Nov 13, 2018  Student Writer
I’m going to do my best 
Reply
:iconsnowflurry12345:
SnowFlurry12345 Featured By Owner Nov 14, 2018
That's all we expect, and that's all we need.
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:iconbmah:
bmah Featured By Owner Nov 10, 2018  Hobbyist Photographer
Dang, I didn’t see this coming. At all. Really awesome to see you return!
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:iconpokemonmanic3595:
pokemonmanic3595 Featured By Owner Nov 13, 2018  Student Writer
Thanks bmah ^w^
Reply
:icongh0st-pr0t0type:
Gh0st-Pr0t0type Featured By Owner Nov 10, 2018
Thank you Pokemaniacmansion3595 for finally fixing this clusterfuck of a first chapter. Also thank you to Rukkus 717 for unnecessarily commenting about this comment n the comment section of my least favorite video.
Reply
:iconmegalcro:
MegaLCRO Featured By Owner Nov 13, 2018  Hobbyist Writer
Uh, what.
Reply
:icongreatdragonsigner:
greatdragonsigner Featured By Owner Nov 10, 2018
Good luck pokemonmaniac. I hope the series picks up the steam it lost.
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:iconpokemonmanic3595:
pokemonmanic3595 Featured By Owner Nov 13, 2018  Student Writer
I’m going to keep chugging along
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:iconwildwolf42:
Wildwolf42 Featured By Owner Nov 10, 2018
Hmm... I feel like I've read this before...
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:iconpokemonmanic3595:
pokemonmanic3595 Featured By Owner Nov 10, 2018  Student Writer
I know, crazy right?
Reply
:iconrukkus717:
Rukkus717 Featured By Owner Nov 9, 2018  Student Writer
I haven't even read it yet and I'm stunned by the title

I remember when I first read the Pokéumans OG
Reply
:iconthequirkygamer:
TheQuirkyGamer Featured By Owner Nov 9, 2018  Hobbyist Digital Artist
So excited to see this rewritten! The original was so nostalgic for me so to see it being explored again is making me excited! :D
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:iconpokemonmanic3595:
pokemonmanic3595 Featured By Owner Edited Nov 9, 2018  Student Writer
Wow I can’t believe Chapter 1 can be considered nostalgic :D
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:iconthequirkygamer:
TheQuirkyGamer Featured By Owner Nov 10, 2018  Hobbyist Digital Artist
it is for me! :D
Reply
:iconlobo91:
lobo91 Featured By Owner Nov 10, 2018
Honestly, it is also nostalgic for me, even though I read the OS barely two years ago.

But it is the story that got me into Pokéumans in the first place. :D
Reply
:iconthunderus-the-wolf:
Thunderus-the-Wolf Featured By Owner Edited Nov 9, 2018  Hobbyist Writer
Welcome aboard the "Remastering Your Old PKU Story" Train!
Reply
:icond4tbui:
D4tBui Featured By Owner Nov 9, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
Really cool. Buizel is very happy Will anything here make changes to the canon as a whole, as in massive rule changes?

Also I'm sorry about what I said a while ago.Buizel is sad 
Reply
:iconpokemonmanic3595:
pokemonmanic3595 Featured By Owner Edited Nov 9, 2018  Student Writer
No, it’ll mostly be story details and such

And look, I admit i did overreact a bit; I was in a bad mood at the time

Honestly comments like that is part of the reason I’m doing this at all
Reply
:iconmorningbloom:
morningbloom Featured By Owner Nov 9, 2018  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Awesome!! I've been reading this since it started, and I'm excited to see a remade version!!
Reply
:icondimentionjumper:
DimentionJumper Featured By Owner Nov 9, 2018
Its a remake alright.
Reply
:iconpokemonmanic3595:
pokemonmanic3595 Featured By Owner Nov 13, 2018  Student Writer
Yup
Reply
:iconlobo91:
lobo91 Featured By Owner Nov 9, 2018
This... is amazing! The fact you decided to remaster this is a fantastic event! ^.^

And I have looked at this and I can right away that you have improved leaps and bounds when I compare this remaster with your old chapter 1.

You have taken your first and most difficult step and that I say is a great thing. Keep it up Brandon! Time to shake your ghosts of regrets and worry and do what your heart desire. ^^
Reply
:iconpokemonmanic3595:
pokemonmanic3595 Featured By Owner Nov 10, 2018  Student Writer
I appreciate the support :D
Reply
:iconwater-pokemon-master:
Water-Pokemon-Master Featured By Owner Nov 9, 2018
*two thumbs up* you've improved a bunch in the past few years! definantly worth the read. its gone from a teenage short story, to something worthy of all the veiwers you've gained. Congrats Brandon :3 its almost a whole new story now!
Reply
:icongreatshales:
GreatShales Featured By Owner Nov 9, 2018  Student General Artist
hoppin up and down in my seat
Reply
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