Chapter 6-1: A call to arms (and legs and tails?)

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Note: This story is written in the first person by Joseph Watcher. Also, parts of this story arc were inspired by ToT Chapter 6 Prologue/Placeholder by :iconklumzyninja:

Today started rather normal. I haven't finished absorbing the local library yet, but I am making progress. I have lost count of how many books I have gone through in the last while. While I was going through a book, I head a voice in my head.

You should go outside

That voice... has yet to fail me. I promptly closed the book I was reading, possibly a little too loudly for being in a library. I returned the book to its proper location and left the library, ignoring all of the stunned eyes looking at me. I don't blame them. I hardly take any breaks while I am absorbing books. I had yet to take a break while in the middle of reading one.
I stepped outside. It was a beautiful day out. The sun was shining, the wind was blowing, there was a smell of smoke. Smoke? Chaos erupted around me. Apparently, the city was under attack.
Sela: "Go help the townsfolk get to safety, I will protect the tree."
Joseph: "By yourself?"
"From one ancient to another and with all due respect, that is utter nonsense. You can't protect the tree by yourself, it is too big! You would have to be on every side of the tree. And that wouldn't be enough, some of the bandits can fly and others can climb! I am helping you regardless of your input. I will go protect the other side of the tree."

I started running to the other side of the tree. What have I gotten myself into? I finally got to the point that I believed was on the opposite side of the tree from Sela and I then saw the hoards of bandits approaching. There is too many of them. They will overrun us and there is nothing I can do about it.

Yes, there is.

I stood there thinking for a bit. The only way to ensure that no bandits get into to tree is to protect the tree... with a suit of armor... of Protect. The idea was so stupidly crazy that it just might work. The only issue is that I can't put up a protect that large, or can I? I have read that this universe has magic. It can't be too different than magic in other universes. If I read the books correctly, they seemed to indicate that you need to sacrifice something in order to do magic. That something doesn't have to be yours. That is where the bad witches come from. The good witches and mystics use their own energy to power their magic. So I decided to make a note to the universe that I am on that altar and not something else.

If my current understanding of magic is correct, I should be able to power up my moves if I mix them with magic, so I threw some into my Telekinesis so I could feel around and find all of the possible entrances to the tree. I felt my energy slowly get drained away as I was feeling around. As I initially thought, there were too many. I'm going to have to cover the entire thing. This is going to suck, I just know it.

I turned around to face the tree and put all of my efforts into raising a Protect around it. It was a marvelous orange for some reason. The Protect started appearing from the base and started going up the tree, laying on top of it like a suit of armor. It was a beautiful sight to behold. After raising it, I turned to face the advancing ruffians. If I intimidate them properly, maybe I can get by without... Ow... OW. OW OW OW! The Pain!

I felt myself hit the ground, inwardly writhing from pain. I managed to not writhe from the pain outwardly since that would mess up any intimidation I tried to put up. The poison from before was nothing like this. Is this what they meant by sacrificing yourself to do magic? I made an attempt to stand but didn't have much luck doing so. What I did manage to do was to get in an "I'm going to pounce on you" stance. Maybe that would help.

The ruffians were getting closer. I need to come up with a plan. If they KO me, the protect will go down and they will be able to get into the tree. It appears that the magic did more than just inflict horrific pain on all of my body, it also seems to have sapped all of my strength as well. How am I going to defend with no energy?

Energy. That's it! Maybe I could absorb the energy from oncoming attacks! This idea is even crazier than my previous one. Maybe I will be able to return to my usual function if I absorb a Hyper Beam or two. I usually try to avoid fighting if possible, but if this strategy works, I want them fighting me. The best way to do that is to freak them out. Then they won't be able to focus enough to land an effective hit on me. The ruffians have arrived.

Joseph: "Do not come any closer or you will have to fight a witch!"

They stopped advancing for a moment.

Bandit 1 (Raticate): "You, a witch? You look pathetic. Let us through and maybe we will let you live."
Joseph: "Over my dead body."
Bandit 1: "Your funeral."
"But before you continue, I have some quick questions for you. What makes you so sure I'm not putting on an act of weariness to goad you into attacking me? What makes you so sure I am not a witch? And most important of all, do you feel lucky punk?"

I don't think I have ever had this much fun messing with other people's minds. The one confronting me seemed a bit doubtful now.

Bandit 2 (Sandslash): "I think he is bluffing. He is obviously worn out."
Joseph: "I bet you couldn't even take me down with a Hyper Beam."
Bandit 1: "That's it. We will see if you are really bluffing."

You and me both kid. He began to charge his Hyper Beam. I braced myself for it and felt it hit. It knocked me back against my Protect and then I fell to the ground.
If you couldn't tell, I didn't major in English. I do programming instead, so this likely could have been done better.
What will happen? Did it work? Was the bandit lucky? Found out next time on... Ummm... "Following Team Steward"? Don't forget to comment and tell me what you do and/or don't like.

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