"I think this is a bad idea," The Lugia snorted as he reshuffled his wings, peering down at the small grave. It had weathered storms and sun for many months now, and a small berry bush had flourished over the spot where the body was. "She's too volatile."
"Solstice, you worry far too much." His companion, a Ho-Oh named Forrestal, stated. "That, among other reasons, is exactly why she needs to come back. She died before her time. I bet if you asked Anachronos he would tell you the same thing. She's powerful enough, and she's experienced. She knows how to handle wars. The heroes these days? They wouldn't know what to do if combat bit them in the tails. And she's easy to exploit." Forrestal added casually.
"But it's not right. And can you do it, anyways?" Solstice snorted.
"Please, my brothers and sisters are skilled in bringing back the dead. It was one of my own kind that brought forth the Legendary Beasts. I think I can bring back a mere mortal. And we have no other choice. You saw what the Dusk did. Or Deoxys. Imagine if one of our own turned against us like that? We need soldiers. Skilled ones. They're too inexperienced, too unpracticed." Forrest added, edging closer to the grave as Solstice moved away.
"And you can keep her under control?"
"And it's the only thing left for us to do?"
"We need protection against the future. History repeats, doesn't it? Isn't that what the old Dialga saidthe ninth one, I think? Who better to keep us safe than those who know the past. It'll work."
"What about others?"
"We'll see. Giratina may not like it if we keep pulling his dead away. And besides, some of those from the past are still alive. Like I said, she died too early."
"Fine. Carry on with this. If it goes wrong, I'm blaming you."
The smell of burning permeated the air. Burning and traces of powers, she could sense that easily enough. It was dark, too. Characteristic of the Reverse World, but you couldn't smell anything there, and the only true power signature you could sense was Giratina's. This was different. She was immediately filled with a sense of foreboding. A small instinct was telling her what she didn't want to knowshe wasn't dead.
"Oh, Arceus." Solara groaned, as she carefully opened an eye and immediately shut it again. "The hell are you doing? I was happy dead, you know." She croaked, her voice a bit shaky from disuse. "And furthermore, where am I? And what's happening andoh Arceus! Are these feathers? I have feathers now, what did you do to me?" She snapped, immediately forcing herself upright. Which promptly caused her to fall wayside and slip, her body not used to the sudden moment after so long being immobile and, well, dead.
Forrestal watched the floundering former psyceon, amused. If his beak allowed him the capabilities of smiling, he would be. "In order of your questionsI've brought you back from the dead, you'll be happier alive, you're in the Burned Tower of Ecruteak, you're alive, and yes those are feathers. I had to alter your form a bit, as it was a pile of ashes before. But you'll find you have more power than you did before. Not as much as I have, of course, and any Legendary could easily destroy you, but you're stronger than any mortal pokemon."
Solara snorted, finally managed to sit upright after much struggle trying to balance herself. "Care to tell me why you brought me back, maybe?"
"We needed more heroes. Better ones. This generation doesn't have the same
moxie that you and your friends did." Forrest replied casually.
"Are you implying that they're weak? Because I'd bet you Lyra could totally roast your smug, feathery face." Solara snapped, bristling.
"Doubtful," Forrestal said, flaring his wings. They easily took up the room, the tips of them brushing against the roof. He already had to bend his head a bit to fit in the room.
Solara hissed at his display of force, lashing her tail. "So what. You want me to go around the region doing your dirty work? What if I don't want to?"
Forrestal watched Solara carefully, folding up his wings again. "If you want to patrol the region, that is your choice. I am offering you to reside here in Ecruteak, in this Tower, though. And it would be fairly easy. The humans would leave you alone as would the local pokemon. All you'd need to do is be ready and willing whenever to rise up against any possible threats to our regions. And if you choose not to, I'll let you go. But remember, your family lives in my region. They live a few wingbeats away. I can make their life very miserable."
Solara growled, tail feathers raised and fur puffed and bristling. "You wouldn't dare. I'd kill you."
"I brought you back, Wraitheon. I can kill you again." Forrestal threatened.
Solara bared her teeth, but stepped back into her sitting position. "Fine. I'll do what you want. As long as my family stays safe." She muttered irritably, furious at her powerlessness.
"I thought you'd see it my way," The large phoenix like pokemon replied coolly.
"So. How about it? I can leave and go see my family if I want?" Solara asked. The top of the Bell Tower was great for seeing distancesshe could see most of Johto from up here. She had already figured out where they were, using her psychic abilities to track Lyra.
"I suppose you could," Forrestal said smoothly, "But how do you know they'd want to see you again?"
The Wraitheon looked baffled, recoiling away from the large bird in surprise. "What? Why wouldn't they want to see me?"
Forrestal shrugged, "You killed yourself, didn't you? You'd think they'd be hurt. Soundwave and Lyra might want nothing more to do with you, and Epsilon never even met you. He might be bitter that you killed yourself before he even hatched."
"They're family, though." Solara snapped.
"Family or not, you know yourself how strong hate can be." Forrestal added casually.
Solara stifled a whine. Deep down, part of her was saying that Forrestal's words were true. She had killed herself, maybe they were furious and hurt? The Wraitheon drooped a bit. What had she done? Maybe it would be better to stay, hidden. Better they think her dead and remember her for being a hero or something. She fled back to her ruined Tower to hide.
Forrestal sighed wearily. Lies, all of them. But things that had to be said. He didn't want her parading off unguarded. She was too much of a loose cannon. The last thing he wanted was to her find allies against him.
Ecruteak, after a while, was a place Solara could get used to. The ghosts were friendly enough, and they reminded her of Giratina's realm. And Forrestal was right, the humans mostly stayed away from the ruined tower. And as long as she didn't go to the basement where the Legendary Beasts had lived, everything was okay.
There had been one incident with the Beasts already, one of them had visited the Tower. She had laid low though, and with a bit of cloaking and a bit of psychic energy, the Beast had more or less avoided her. That was how it was supposed to be. And then there was the time a Shiny Ho-Oh came to visit the Bell Tower. That was certainly an experience, especially when Forrestal had asked her to come. She had ended up being forced to parade around and show off, much to her distaste.
Still. The whole living again thing wasn't so bad. She had to admit, it was pretty good to be alive again. Even if she never saw her former friends and family, and she missed Buzzard's company.
Buzzard. The Charrosaurrus was probably panicking over her disappearance. It wasn't like she got to tell anyone she was leaving or anything. She was just there one day and then alive the next. Not that days were apt descriptions of time spent in the Reverse World. She idly wondered if she could ask Forrestal to bring back her old comrades, but she guessed the Legendary would disagree.
She scowled irritably. That bird had managed to force her under his control so easily. Solara admitted she missed the days of the Deoxys wars. It was simple then. It was herself and Ghost. She didn't need anyone else, really. That was it. Solara cursed irritably. Arceus, she was getting soft.
Despite the Legendary's fears, it had been four months still Solara's resurrection and nothing had happened.
It was something to be grateful for, he supposed. He worried that the Wraitheon would grow fretful or bored and try to leave Ecruteak, but his words had worked. That was a comfort, at least. She was too scared to leave. Which was ironic, that the former Champion was terrified of being feared and hated. Forrestal hummed to himself, shaking his head. It was a pity, in a way. But it wasn't like anything could be done about it. Better she remained of her own free willin a twisted, manipulative sort of waythan feel rage at being trapped.
"Oi, Catface! I know you're here, you can't hide from me!"
Solara slunk deeper in the shadows, trying to force Pan to not find her. Maybe a bit of a psychic suggestion and
"Gotcha," The Raikou leered over the smaller Wraitheon, looking every inch threatening. The whole giant saber teeth weren't helping either, and neither was the static running over his fur.
"What are you doing here?" He snorted, taking a few steps back. "Why aren't you with the others? Hell, why am I not with the rest of my team? Oh right, because I got elected to find your sorry tail. Arceus." Pan shook his head, scowling down at Solara.
Solara hissed quietly, straightening a bit. "What the hell are you talking about?"
"I'm talking about the funeral. Don't tell me you didn't get the memo. Oh right, you didn't. Because you've been a huge coward and been hiding away in here, while the rest of us had to deal with the body. You're pathetic. What kind of friend are you, anyways?" Pan growled, bristling.
"Whose body? What do you mean?" Solara snapped angrily, sparks of psychic energy radiating from her.
Pan regarded her coldly, replying, "Ghost is dead."
Immediately Solara drooped, shaking her head in disbelief. "You're wrong, she can't be dead."
"She's my team mate. I think I'd know if she was dead or not. Now let's get going. You need to be at the funeral. And you need to get out of this hole. Arceus, what the hell have you been doing?" Pan sighed.
"I've been here. For the past Arceus knows how long. I thought they didn't want anything more to do with me." Solara replied a bit hesitantly.
Pan snorted, "As if. You're kidding, right? Ho-Oh, you're just a big coward now. Sort of disappointing that time was wasted on you to bring you back."
Solara growled angrily, puffing up again. "Shut up. Just shut up. Or I'll kill you and then we'll see whose time was wasted."
"I doubt you could kill me, but that's the kind of spirit I like to see, you coward." Pan said.
"Ghost, I'm sorry."
The burial had ended over an hour ago, but Solara had remained by the grave, keeping a quiet vigil. "I'm sorry that I wasn't there for you like I should have been. You were my sister, you were my friend, you were my family. And what did I do? I went and offed myself. And then when I came back, I hid in a hole. Because I was too scared to face anyone again. It took a snarky asshole of a Raikou to snap me out of it. And I should've found you guys immediately. As soon as I came back I should've returned to my family. And now I don't even get to say good bye to you. What kind of friend was I?" Solara hissed to herself, closing her eyes.
"Dammit, I suck at this stuff. I just
I miss you, Ghost. I'm sorry for everything. I'll make sure Rust and Copper stay safe for you. I won't let anyone hurt them. It's the least I can do. So
just be happy, okay? You're at peace now, I guess. And your family will be safe." Solara drifted off awkwardly, lapsing into silence.
The gravestone had nothing to offer in way of condolence, but Solara swore she could hear the wind call out her name. "Thanks for forgiving me this last time, Ghost." Solara sighed, lying down next to the grave until the next morning, keeping watch like she promised.
"Who was Ghost Girl?" Ariel asked, looking up at Solara curiously. Solara nudged the small cryanivee, before straightening. It was late at night and Solara had volunteered to watch Ariel and Miranda while Lyra and Rust spent some time together.
"Ghost Girl? She was the bravest umbreon I ever knew." Solara replied. "She was a good friend of this espeon, and that espeon never understood how much she meant to poor Ghost. And so that espeon accidentally hurt her, but Ghost still found it to forgive the poor espeon. Even when the espeon had to leave for a long, long time and never got the chance to thank her. And Ghost also loved her family. She was the mother of your father, and she cared for him and her mate and your aunt deeply. And she would do anything to protect them, and she would have done anything to protect you two."
Miranda blinked, lifting herself into a sitting position. "Where did she go?"
Solara blinked, tail twitching as she replied quietly, "She had to go for a while. And she probably won't come back for a long time. Until then, she asked me to help keep you guys safe. But you should definitely aspire to be like her. She was a brave pokemon, and you would do well to anything like her."
"But what happened to that espeon you talked about?" Ariel inquired, head tilted.
Solara grinned a bit, replying, "Nobody knows what happened to her, little one. But wherever she is, I bet she's doing fine."