Welcome to another exciting installment of Spacemon, the tale of a Pokemon TRPG campaign! This is an alternate universe story with one key difference that shifts the entire narrative in an interesting way. You should get caught up on our canonical adventures here first!
Cold silence filled the air of the Helix’s med bay as Morgan stood in the corner, quietly interacting with a monitor near the examination table where Alex was currently sitting. She pressed a panel on the display and MARIA whirred to life, homing in to inject Alex with a mild muscle relaxant to help assuage the effects of the lingering paralysis. Why did she have to run off like that? Morgan wondered, glancing over at the injured girl. As MARIA finished and wheeled itself out of the way, Morgan approached and gave Alex a quick look over. Without speaking, she reached over to the girl and lifted up the her top to examine her injuries for herself, and was shocked to see extensive bruising all along her right side.
Morgan looked up to see Alex giving her a cold look, but the girl quickly averted her gaze. Morgan sighed. Silence speaks louder than words. After updating some medical logs, Morgan looked back up and saw Alex staring intently at practically anything that wasn’t her. Finally, she decided to break the silence. “This is what you get for running off like that. You need to be more careful.”
“Why would you care?” Alex snapped back at her.
Morgan immediately regretted her decision. “Because you’re a part of this crew; it’s my job.” She turned and walked over to the counter to retrieve an ice pack for Alex’s swollen bruises.
“You didn’t seem to care about those Pokemon,” she heard Alex grumble behind her.
Morgan closed her eyes and let out a deep, angry sigh. She had been trying to be professional, but the comment still struck a nerve. “Look, I’m sorry, okay!’ she shouted, turning to face the girl. “But those kind of Pokemon are a real threat to all of us!”
Alex leapt to her feet. “What do you mean ‘those kind of Pokemon?!’” she shouted. “Lumiera’s a ghost! Are you gonna try to kill her too?!”
“No, that’s not what I-” Morgan cut herself off and held out the ice pack. “Look, I’m not having this conversation right now,” she said angrily. “Just take this and-”
Before Morgan could finish, Alex swatted her arm away. “Just leave me alone!” the girl screamed as the ice pack clattered to the floor. “I hate you!”
“I’m trying to protect us! You just don’t understand!”
“Yes I do! You’re a murderer! And a liar! I trusted you!” Tears streaming down her cheeks, Alex ran out of the med bay and the room fell silent once more.
Morgan let out a terse sigh and recovered the ice pack, storing it away with the rest of the ship’s medical supplies. You don’t understand. Few if any of her crewmates saw through the facade of anger anymore, but if they could, they would see just how weak and scared Morgan felt. Nobody does. She wasn’t afraid of the ghosts— far from it, in fact— but she did use them as scapegoats for her own insecurities. It was a lot easier to be angry at something when it wasn’t you. Despite this, though, the one she truly feared was herself. Morgan caught herself staring at the mirrored surface in the back of the cabinet at her reflection for far longer than she felt she had any right to.
“Morgan!? Where are you!?”
The sound of H’s angry shout pierced through the silence. Shortly thereafter, the cyborg burst into the room with a rage in his eyes greater even than what Morgan was feeling at the moment. “How dare you try to attempt that!?” he berated her. “How dare you mess with anything I have!? How dare you mess with something that is one of a kind, so specific, and so incredibly valuable to this crew!? You see, every single thing that happens with you, your emotions take control, you allow your anger to send you into a spiral of fiery fury and you wreak havoc on everything! You can’t let your emotions do that! You’re smart, that’s why you’re here, but you have emotions and you keep letting them take control of you and doing stupid things! Just quit it! You’re going to cause incredible amount of damage to yourself and everyone on this crew!”
Morgan closed her eyes and attempted to drown out H’s incessant ranting. The more he talked, the angrier she felt; her insides were a whirlpool of emotions that she constantly tried to quell, lest she drown in their wake. Clenching her fists, Morgan looked at the cyborg, locking eyes with him in an almost predatory glare. “You don’t know what fury is,” she snarled.
“I don’t care what fury is,” H snapped back at her. “I know that emotions have the power to be incredibly destructive. I don’t want to know what fury is, and I don’t think you do either. It will only cause problems. Stop doing it, or someone else will make you. You have to realize, I don’t care how much you fear or don’t want something, that Trevenant, or even that Cofagrigus thing! Pokemon are important! Pokemon are tools that allow us to achieve our goals and that is where they work. We work with them and they work with us. The Trevenant, and many of the Pokemon on this ship are one of a kind, irreplaceable tools and-”
The cyborg’s words were cut short abruptly as Morgan unleashed her fury. Blasting H with all the psionic energy she could muster, Morgan launched him across the med bay and into the wall on the far side of the room. Her rage boiling over, Morgan glared at H as he slumped to the floor.
“Tools?” Morgan snapped. “Is that all you think anyone is?!”
“Of course!” H responded, completely deadpan, as he pushed himself back to his feet with a well-timed pogo. “Pokemon are our tools just as we are theirs! Only through the combined effort of both can we achieve perfe-”
The cyborg’s words were cut short once more as Morgan’s Pokeball collided with his jaw. The ball fell to the floor, releasing her Espeon as she began to bark orders at her.
“Yvonne, use Psybeam!”
Shandra lay against the far wall of the warp lab as usual, staring into the purple sphere in the center of the room. Usually she would be hard at work trying to stretch the limits of her power, but right now she really wasn’t feeling it. The whole ‘Gardener’ revelation was getting to her, and in her state of mind, all she felt she could muster was simple manipulation: playing with a small ball of warp, moving it about the room, expanding and contracting it.
Even that got boring after a while, so she powered down the machine and stared at the open doorway across from her. She had warmed up to the crew enough to feel comfortable leaving it open, and besides, it wasn’t as if she had any valuables that she wanted to hide. Shandra closed her eyes and was about to drift off into what she could only assume was sleep when Alex suddenly ran into the room, bawling. Shandra barely managed to stand up before the girl had already bolted across the room and nearly tackled her against the wall with a hug, then collapsed to the floor, clinging to her knees.
“Hey,” Shandra said as she crouched down to Alex’s level, hugging her. “Are you alright?” She felt the girl forcibly shake her head and bury her face into her shirt. “What’s wrong?”
Alex continued to cry in Shandra’s embrace, but not really answer. Shandra sighed and said, “Look, I can’t really help if I don’t know how, can I?”
From deep within a different part of the ship, Shandra could hear a distinct thud, followed by shouting. “Though, I suspect that may have something to do with it.”
Alex nodded. Shandra’s shoulder was getting damp from the girl’s tears. The best she could do was hold the girl until she eventually calmed down and regained some semblance of composure. Sounds of struggle continued, muffled by distance, though steadily approaching. The lights flickered and Shandra could only assume H was involved.
“Morgan…” Alex’s voice cracked as she tried to speak; it was completely hoarse from all the sobbing.
“What about Morgan?” Shandra asked.
“I hate her,” the girl said. “Why is she so mean?”
Shandra sighed. In the short time she had known Morgan, she had seen her become far more distant. It was as if Morgan had slowly been becoming a different person. While she had begun to open up a bit shortly after Shandra had joined the crew, it now seemed like she was actively trying to distance herself room from everyone. For what reasons, Shandra had no idea, but she did notice that Morgan tended to react to things by receding further into her shell.
“She’s… difficult,” Shandra finally said, realizing that she had yet to give Alex an answer. “But she’s a good person.”
Is she though? Shandra found herself doubting her own words. She knew that Morgan had been struggling with her own inner demons, but lately she had been resorting to violence more and more. The way she had lashed out at Dr. Jeremiah, the way she had tried to attack Shandra’s Pokemon, to attack Alex, and now her apparent violent altercation with the rest of the crew. As if on cue, the lights flickered again and another thud sounded in the corridor.
“How can she be a good person?” Alex asked, seeming to agree with Shandra’s internal monologue. “She tried to hurt your Pokemon…”
“Look, she’s just going through some hard times right now. I’m sure she didn’t mean whatever it was that she said to you.” Shandra didn’t really believe it herself, especially considering the continued sounds of struggle outside the room, but she said what she thought Alex needed to hear. At that moment, her only priority was to comfort the girl in her arms.
“That doesn’t just magically make it go away, y’know.” Alex spoke weakly, her voice cracking as she looked up at Shandra. Her tears had dried, but her face still showed signs of their presence. “Words still hurt.”
“Yeah, I know,” Shandra said, pulling the girl back into more of an actual hug. “Are you okay now?”
Alex nodded. “I think so… Thanks.” She took Shandra’s hand in her own and held it close to her heart. “You just had your whole world turned upside down and you’re still worried about me…”
“I care a lot about you,” Shandra playfully told the girl as she rustled her hair. “Of course I’m worried about you.”
“But what about you?” Alex asked, between fits of newfound laughter. “Are you okay?”
“I’m fine,” Shandra quickly answered, but she knew it was a lie. She could feel anger seething inside— anger at Jeremiah, at the other scientists, at herself.
By the look on Alex’s face, it was obvious to Shandra that she didn’t believe her. Shandra felt Alex squeeze her hand tighter. “You’re still the same person to me,” the girl said. “No matter what.”
“I know, it’s just… I didn’t ask for any of this.”
“So? That doesn’t change who you are. It doesn’t change how much you mean to me.” Alex leaned closer as she spoke; Shandra could feel the girl’s messy bangs brush against her skin. “Being with you has made me feel happy for the first time in so long and nothing can change that.”
Slowly, they both leaned closer together. This certainly wasn’t their first kiss, but Shandra felt the anger within her subside as the two leaned in, and closed her eyes in anticipation of what was to come.
Shandra almost immediately opened her eyes, and saw that Alex had done the same. With a look of concern and confusion on their faces, both turned towards the door, the source of the unexpected noise. Dmitri sat atop the two unconscious crewmates he had piled into the doorway. He nodded, gave an awkward little wave, and continued eating his candy bar.
Morgan lay in her bed, listlessly staring at the ceiling. From the comfort of her locked room, it was clear to her that she preferred not dying. At least, she preferred not dying at the hands of a giant, angry, horrible rock-monster thing, or from the shock of her own apocalyptic visions, anyway. She dared not close her eyes lest she see either memory again, both of which had already burnt their way into her mind regardless. Exhaustion, however, had a different idea. Sighing, she closed her eyes hoping for the sleep she so desperately needed.
Screaming. Fire. The indescribable smell of charred flesh and the sounds of destruction.
Morgan blinked, trying to wake up, but she was still there. Waves of terrified people ran past her into a tall obsidian temple behind her as she looked out over the consecrated fields of chaos. An ominous, shadowy figure loomed in front of the red sun, raining down flames of death upon the crowds of people desperately trying to escape it. How could anything cause this much destruction? It was hard to see it through the rays of the star behind it and the billowing smoke in front, but she could swear it looked almost human, but… not.
Morgan stepped forward, cautiously descending the pyramid-like steps to try and get a better look. The sky burnt a brilliant orange, making the pyramid’s golden highlights shine brightly. The entire planet seemed to be engulfed in flames that spread as far as the horizon. She looked up to see the shadow turn to face her and blast a ball of heat at her. Heart pounding, she closed her eyes and braced for impact…
…and found herself back on the Helix. She paused to catch her breath, then looked around at the chaotic state of her own room. Since when was I this disorganized? She scolded herself with incredulity. Morgan got up and began shuffling things around her room when she was interrupted by a knocking at the door. Oh God, if that’s Alex…
“Hey, you in there?” Alex asked, cautiously. It was pretty late at night, so the girl was probably trying to avoid waking up the others. It wasn’t too late for Morgan to just… slide back into bed and pretend she didn’t hear her.
“You were talking in your sleep; I came when I heard screaming.” Damn it. She knows I’m awake. Morgan was already back in her uncomfortably stiff bed, facing the wall and hiding under the blanket. I’m acting like such a child!
“I just wanted to see if you were okay, and…” the girl hesitated. Bullshit. You hate me. I’d hate me. Just leave me alone. “...and say I’m sorry.”
Morgan felt herself become less tense. She lay there silently wondering if it were possible. Had she simply misheard her? Even so, she slowly got up from the bed again and walked over to the door. Pressing a few buttons at the console, she looked up to see Alex quickly shift from her former position of leaning on the door. She looked so full of guilt, but why?
“Why are you apologizing to me?” Morgan said definitively rather than ask, hoping to end the conversation before it went on much longer. “It’s all my fault anyway.”
“No, it’s not,” Alex said, in an attempt to comfort Morgan. She was far beyond that point. She didn’t need comforting. “I know you were acting for the good of the crew, and I’m sorry for letting my own feelings get in the way of that. I guess we can both get carried away by our emotions, huh?”
The girl was smiling. Morgan wasn’t. She couldn’t for the life of her understand why Alex wanted to forgive her, especially considering she couldn’t even forgive herself. But one thing was certain: for whatever her reasons may have been, Alex wasn’t mad at her anymore, and Morgan was at least glad about that. “I’m… I’m sorry too.”
Morgan almost recoiled away as Alex unexpectedly lunged forward for a hug. She honestly didn’t know how to respond to this, and it took her longer than she would have liked to realize that she should probably hug Alex back. The two shared a brief embrace and, although she felt she didn’t really deserve forgiveness, Morgan felt almost happy in a way; Alex was the closest thing she had to a friend at this point.
“It’s pretty late,” Alex said, trying her best to suppress a yawn. “I’mma go back to bed. You should too; you look like you need sleep more than I do.” With a slight chuckle, the girl turned and slipped out of the room.
Morgan sighed as the door slid shut, and she locked it again for good measure. Alex was right, it was late and she should try to get as much decent sleep as possible. Dragging herself back to bed, Morgan hastily smothered herself in her blanket, slowly closed her eyes, and drifted off into a somewhat more peaceful sleep.
As the Helix flew through the Warp on course for Parisia, Alex and Shandra sat together in the warp lab, each intently working on their own projects. Alex glanced up from the Pokeball she was tinkering with to watch Shandra fiddle around with her personal warp drive, attempting her own modifications on the device. Even though they were working independently, Alex simply enjoyed being in Shandra’s company while she worked.
She smiled, then looked back down at the ball in her hand. The crew had been to several planets over the past few days, and they had damaged many Pokeballs in the process of catching new Pokemon friends. Now that they were on the way back to civilization to do important things again, Alex had decided that it was time to fix them. Her friends always told her that she didn’t have to repair their Pokeballs for them, but Alex enjoyed doing it. She always felt in control when she was tinkering away with the metallic spheres.
With one last adjustment, the ball she was working on flashed, signaling that power had been restored. Alex set it down on the floor and was about to pick up the next when suddenly H burst into the room. The girl’s smile quickly turned into a scowl. What does he want? The cyborg quickly strode across the room toward Shandra, completely ignoring Alex as he passed by, his lab coat billowing behind him as always.
“So, I’ve been thinking,” H said as Shandra stood up to face him. “Initially, it seemed laughably funny. You became, coincidentally, the creator of the Universe, but it works out so well.”
Alex could immediately tell the cyborg’s words were hurtful as she watched Shandra glare back at him, but H, of course, remained blissfully ignorant. What a jerkface.
“I am here to become the enlightener of Humanity towards their next step in evolution to become the perfection that will begin throughout the Universe,” H continued. “You are the start, yet I am that which is to succeed you and-”
“-And yet you still come in here and compare yourself and your goals to what I was without even bothering to look at what I am.” Shandra finished, annoyed. Alex couldn’t help but snicker as the cyborg stood speechless, even if only briefly. “I didn’t ask for this, you know. I’m still the same as I was before we went to that station.”
“Which is precisely why I found it so humorous,” the cyborg stated, straightening himself before continuing. “It wasn’t merely the fact that it was you, but it was also the fact that it was you.”
“... What?” Shandra asked, clearly confused.
“I’m saying that just as you were the beginning, I will be the end. Or, more accurately, the herald of a new beginning. An age of of enlightenment, where I as the chosen one shall-”
“H, just shut up,” Shandra snapped, shaking her head. “Please?”
“And why should I?” H retorted with his usual arrogant tone.
“Because you’re an insufferable prick with a nasty messiah complex?” Shandra offered without skipping a beat.
“... Point taken.”
“Why are you even here?!” Alex yelled from the floor. “Just go away!”
“Merely speaking my mind,” the cyborg answered. He turned to leave the room, his lab coat swishing behind him. “I have said all that is needed, anyway.”
You don’t get off that easy. Damaged Pokeball in hand, Alex scrambled to her feet and threw it with all her strength. The ball whizzed past H’s head and collided with the door frame with a loud clank, rebounding somewhere near the warp drive.
“Whose side are you even on?” H asked angrily, turning back around. “I don’t understand what you’re doing!”
“Whose side are you on!?” Alex snapped back.
“I am on my side, of course. I am on the side of advancing Humanity. I am on the side of making logical decisions. I am on the side of making sure we progress as a crew. But you just seem to do whatever it is you feel like you want to do that day. You go off and attempt to destroy my stuff, but at the same time you go off and somehow miraculously catch that leviathan, you somehow lead us to that Mirror, and out of everyone on this ship you somehow manage to calm Morgan down from her rage. I don’t get what is with you!”
“You don’t give a shit about anyone on this ship but yourself!” Alex screamed.
“Of course not.”
“Then why are you even here!?”
“Because it is a ship. Fate has placed me here and if it wanted me elsewhere I’d move. Fate wants me here with everyone. Everyone here has a beneficial skill that positively affects me.”
“But everyone here hates you! I hate you!”
“No one in history has ever made something happen without being hated. I’m fine with that. Just make sure you announce what you’re going to do before you go and do it. Don’t get lost and electrocuted again.”
“Get out!” Alex screamed at the cyborg. “Get out! Get out!”
H calmly turned and walked out of the room, leaving Alex staring angrily at the closed door. Shandra walked over to her and placed her hand on the girl’s shoulder, motioning for them both to sit back down. She then picked up the discarded Pokeball and gave it back to her. “Try not to let him get to you,” Shandra told the girl. “He... doesn’t understand.”
“Why do you even keep him around? He’s the worst.”
“Honestly, I don’t know.”
Author’s Notes: This chapter took a long time to write, and I’m glad it’s finally done. There were a few new scenes that we added in addition to heavily modifying scenes that we brought over from the original chapter. Additionally, busy schedules prevented this chapter from being written in a timely fashion. But now it is complete and I’m quite proud of it.
This chapter is basically an altered version of Volume 2, Chapter 20, but instead of showing the crew visiting the planets they visited in that time, we decided to focus on what happened during the time spent traveling between them. We pick up right after the events on the station from the last chapter of Blueshift with a modified version of the med bay scene with Alex and Morgan. In the canon universe, this is where Alex and Morgan made up after Morgan tried to kill the crew’s Pokemon, but as you can see, that didn’t happen here. Because of Morgan’s character shift due to the different way that moment played out in Blueshift, the whole interaction in the med bay was much more confrontational. In turn, that led to Alex running out of the room, and Morgan’s subsequent interaction with H turn violent.
Then we tastefully cut away to Shandra. This next scene was originally a short interaction between Morgan and Shane in the canon storyline, but this time it’s between Alex and Shandra. Distraught from her not so nice interaction with Morgan, Alex goes to Shandra for comfort. We got to get some more cute interactions between the two, while also working in Shandra being comforted after the revelation of her past, just as Shane was in canon. I also used this as a point to start building toward the next scene.
The next scene, which takes place after the fight with the Regirock on the planet Prague, serves two purposes: it shows Morgan’s continued personality shift and it also shows Alex and Morgan making up, finally, even if it isn’t to the same extent as in canon. For me, it was important for them to make up because their relationship is a very sisterly one, and Alex wouldn’t stay mad at her. This scene also gives us another take on the vision Morgan got from the Regirock.
Finally, we conclude with a new version of the scene that closed the original chapter where H went to talk to Shane. This time, Alex is, of course, there with Shandra. Shandra’s reaction is a bit different than Shane’s because, I feel, being with Alex emboldens her a bit since their relationship is stronger than Shane’s was with Morgan. Having Alex in the scene also let us keep in Alex and H’s verbal confrontation that happened during the med bay scene in canon. Since Alex ran out of the room in this chapter, it made sense to move it here.
As opposed to previous chapters, we wrote some scenes from the perspective of a character that isn’t one of the two characters this series focuses on. Given that Morgan’s personality is shifting from what it was in canon, I thought that giving her some scenes from her perspective would give us a more in-depth look at shift. I am very happy with how those two scenes turned out.
That does it for this chapter. As always the Spacemon gang and I will be monitoring the comments to foster discussion and answer any questions. Feel free to give feedback and critiques of the writing so I can improve it for the future, or just leave a comment with what you think about what went down in this chapter or what you think might happen next! You can also revisit past chapters, check out the Spacemon Appendix which is a repository of information on all the lore and characters of Spacemon, or like our Facebook page to stay updated on all things Spacemon! Click here for the next exciting installment of Spacemon: Blueshift!