Welcome to another exciting installment of Spacemon, the tale of a Pokemon TRPG campaign! This is a spinoff of the sci-fi space epic played using the Pokemon Tabletop United (PTU) system, this time GMed by yours truly. You can get caught up the entire Spacemon saga here!
Taraka sat meditating in his room, his holoscroll laid out on the bed in front of him. The monk reached out with his senses toward the scroll, studying what it had thus far recorded, hoping to find some clue that might lead him to the site of his fourth and final vision.
It had been a week since the incident on Troyva and the Maverick’s crew had been keeping a low profile in that time. Suddenly finding himself with an abundance of free time, Taraka had been able to focus on his pilgrimage once more. However, even though the monk was spending plenty of time meditating with his scroll, he felt no closer to discerning the meaning of the final clue in his initial vision: the figure silhouetted by bright light.
Suddenly, a knock at the door snapped Taraka out of his meditative state. “Hey, Taraka!” Axel’s voice called out. “Gaster, Kasey, and I are headed down into the tunnels to look for Pokemon. Wanna join us?”
“I’m on my way,” Taraka answered. He pocketed his holoscroll, then got to his feet. Before leaving the room, the monk grabbed several Pokeballs he had crafted out of apricorns off his desk. Moments later, Taraka and his three crewmates disembarked from the Maverick.
As he stepped out into the spaceport, Taraka gazed around. For the past few days, the Maverick had been docked on Hibernia, a large Outer Rim mining colony in Sector 34. There wasn’t much to look at as the planet was a frozen snowball with a toxic atmosphere. The indoor climate-regulated colony complex didn’t offer much in the way of things to do, but it did serve as a good place for the Maverick’s crew to lay low for a while.
Over the past few days, the crew had attempted to find some work on Hibernia, but unlike the last mining world they had visited, this one didn’t have the need for the services of their ragtag band. There was no trouble with bandits, no problems with wild Pokemon interfering with the mining operations, no issues that the local authorities couldn’t handle. They had been told, however, that they were free to explore the old mining tunnels no longer in use and search for wild Pokemon. Hibernia may have been unbearably cold on the outside, but all the geothermal activity beneath the surface made it quite warm in the tunnels, making them an ideal habitat for native species of Pokemon.
After renting the necessary hazard gear to brave the toxic gases in the mines, the four members of the Maverick’s crew took an elevator down into one of the old mining tunnels that had been long agro stripped clean of resources. Stepping out into the tunnel, Taraka could only see a short distance in front of him in the dim light pouring out from the elevator.
“Sure is dark down here,” Axel said as he followed the monk. The mercenary reached up and activated the lights on his helmet, illuminating the tunnel. “Much better.”
In the bright light, Taraka noticed a movement a short ways away. Focusing in that direction, the monk spotted a lone Pokemon. “Look, a Koffing,” he said, pointing the Pokemon out to his crewmates. “Anyone want it?”
“I’ll pass,” Kasey replied.
“Yeah, I don’t really have need for it,” Gaster said.
“Me neither,” Axel said.
“Alright, I guess we’ll move on then,” Taraka said with a nod. With that, the four crewmates headed deeper into the tunnel.
“Man, there’s nothing down here,” Axel grumbled as he and his crewmates pressed on into the old mining tunnel. They had been walking for a least half an hour at this point and hadn’t come across a single Pokemon since the Koffing near the elevator.
“Patience,” Taraka said. “I’m sure we will find some Pokemon soon.”
“I wish I had your confidence,” Axel replied, glancing over at the monk. “Maybe we should have tried to catch that Koffing,” he mumbled.
As he turned his head back to face frontwards, Axel’s helmet lights swept across the tunnel ahead of them, revealing a fork. One path led more or less straight ahead before angling off to the right, while the other branched off to the left at a rather sharp angle.
“Which way do you guys think we should go?” Axel asked his crewmates.
“Let’s see,” Taraka said, stepping out in front of the group. The monk looked down the tunnel ahead of them, then peered down the passage on the left. He then glanced back to the right before taking a step down the left tunnel. “Let’s go left,” he said.
“Left works for me,” Kasey said, following the monk down the tunnel.
“I guess left it is,” Axel said before following the two.
The left-hand tunnel turned out to be quite the winding path. The four members of the Maverick’s crew followed its twists and turns, eventually coming to a sharp bend which led them to a much more open three-way intersection of mining tunnels. Peering around a large rock, Axel saw a Nidoking standing off with a Salazzle and four Salandits.
“Finally, some Pokemon,” Axel said to his crewmates, waving them over.
“Looks like a territory dispute,” Gaster said. “Let’s try to snag some of them while they’re distracted,” he continued, drawing his rifle and readying it to fire.
“Let’s go get them,” Taraka said. The monk put up a psionic barrier as he began moving up on the Pokemon.
Axel followed close behind, sending out his Vanillish as he inched forward. Spice Cream didn’t need to breathe, so the toxic atmosphere was no threat to her. Following the mercenary’s example, the others sent out Pokemon that could survive on the planet without issue.
As the group approached the Pokemon, Axel watched as the Salandits swarmed the Nidoking, spewing flames at the larger Pokemon. The Salazzle then leapt forward and sprayed the Nidoking with her deadly toxins that not even a poison type Pokemon could resist.
“Let’s weaken that thing and catch it before they kill it,” Axel said, glancing back at the others.
“On it,” Gaster said, nodding. He took aim with his rifle, then fired off a shot. The Nidoking let out a fierce roar as the laser bolt hit. Then, it collapsed.
“Sorry,” Gaster said. “I didn’t think that would bring it down.”
Axel shrugged at his crewmate. “I didn’t want it that much anyway,” he said. “That Salazzle though …”
“Let’s go for it then,” Kasey said. “Baroness, hit it with Ancient Power!” Her Tyrunt let out a roar as she rushed forward, then struck the Salazzle with her attack, drawing her attention. The Salazzle let out a hiss, and her underlings began moving to engage the new threat.
“Roma, Shadow Punch!” Taraka commanded his Tangrowth as the Salandits closed in. Roma took a swing at one with one of her vine arms, delivering a nasty blow. The Salandit let out an angry hiss, then spit out a jet of flame at its attacker. The one nearest to it followed suit, but Roma managed to evade this time.
While the Tangrowth had the Salandits occupied, Kasey capitalized on the opportunity. Moving swiftly, the scientist ran up and threw a Pokeball at the one Roma had injured. Unfortunately, the Pokemon broke free.
“Spice Cream, use Icicle Spear!” Axel then ordered his Vanillish.
Spice Cream proceeded to fire off several sharp spears of ice, but they unfortunately rained down all around the Salandits, failing to hit any of them. One of the Salandits then fired back with a jet of flame, but it didn’t do much to Spice Cream. The last of the Salandits, meanwhile, focused on Kasey’s Tyrunt. It sprayed Baroness with fire, but the attack failed to penetrate her rocky hide.
The Salazzle, meanwhile, went after Taraka’s Tangrowth. The poisonous fire lizard spit out a ball of fire at Roma, which exploded in a burst on impact, showering Kasey and her Pokemon with sparks, as well as Gaster’s Gloom.
“Get out of there, Roma!” Taraka ordered his Pokemon as Taraka opened fire on the Salazzle with his rifle.
Once his Tangrowth was clear, Taraka threw a Pokeball at the Salazzle. Reacting quickly, the Salazzle maneuvered out of the way and the monk’s Pokeball went sailing past. Moving to assist the leader of the pack, one of the Salandits spit fire at Taraka, singing the monk’s clothes.
“Get that one off him, Baroness!” Kasey called out to her Tyrunt. “Dragon Tail!” Baroness ran at the Salandit attacking Taraka and took a swing at it with her tail. The Salandit quickly skittered away as the Tyrunt’s tail slammed into the ground behind it.
“Spice Cream, Flamethrower!” Axel ordered his Vanillish, directing it after the retreating Salandit. The mercenary’s fiery ice cream cone spit a jet of flame out, but the Salandit was just out of range.
Protecting the fleeing member of the pack, two of the Salandits spit more fire at Spice Cream while the third did the same to Baroness. Luckily, both Pokemon remained unfazed by the assault.
While the Salandits were occupied, Gaster ordered his Gloom to move in on the Salazzle. “Get in there and hit it with Stun Spore, Ficus!” the former smuggler shouted. Ficus approached the Salazzle, then let loose a burst of paralyzing spores from the flower on her head, leaving the toxic lizard writhing on the ground.
“Now to catch it,” Kasey said. She pulled out another Pokeball and tossed it at the Salazzle. The ball pulled the Salazzle inside, then fell to the ground. It shook violently for several seconds, then fell still.
With the pack leader gone, the Salandits began freaking out, wildly spraying flames in all directions. In the chaos, Gaster attempted to capture one of them, but the Pokemon broke free.
“Baroness, Ancient Power!”
“Spice Cream, Heat Wave!”
Axel’s and Kasey’s Pokemon made their attacks on the distressed Salandits, leaving one fainted and two more badly injured. The remaining Salandits began spewing out flames much more wildly, grazing Spice Cream and Ficus.
“Ficus, Sleep Powder!” Gaster commanded his Gloom in response. Yet more spores erupted from Ficus, putting her assailant to sleep. Gaster immediately threw a Pokeball at the Salandit, capturing it instantly.
Now, only two Salandits remained. Soon it was just one, as Taraka captured the other. The sole remaining Salandit was soon left dazed and stunned by the crew’s Pokemon.
“Spice Cream, Astonish!”
“Ficus, Stun Spore!”
As the Salandit flailed around on the ground, Axel ran up to it and hit it with a Pokeball. The Salandit was pulled into the ball, which shook only a single time before falling still.
“Great work, team,” Axel said, grinning as he walked over to claim his prize.
“Captain, we’re back!” Axel announced as he and his crewmates stepped back aboard the Maverick.
“About time,” Cyrus said jokingly, emerging from his room. “I was beginning to wonder if you got lost in the mines.”
“Nope,” Taraka said. “It just took us a while to find Pokemon worth catching.”
“Get anything good?” the captain asked.
“A bunch of Salandits,” Gaster explained.
“Hopefully they were female so you can get some use out of them,” Cyrus chuckled.
“Well mine certainly is,” Kasey said. “It was already a Salazzle.”
“Very nice,” Cyrus said. “By the way, Axel, you got a call while you were down in the caves.”
“Oh? Who from?” Axel asked.
“Why don’t you go and find out?” the captain said.
“Maybe I will,” Axel said. With that, he left his crewmates to continue their conversation and headed for the comms.
Upon arrival, Axel saw that the call was from Persephone. The mercenary hadn’t heard from her since leaving Insipia; the life of an Outer Rim Gym Leader was a busy one after all. He was very much looking forward to seeing her again. Eagerly, Axel called her back.
It was only a few moments before Persephone’s face appeared on the screen. “Hello, Axel,” she said, that sly smirk on her red lips as always.
“Hello yourself,” Axel replied. “It’s nice to see you again. I’ve been thinking about you.”
“Is that so?” Persephone asked. “Well, I have some news for you.”
“What is it?” Axel asked.
“I’m pregnant,” she answered.
“Nice,” Axel blurted out.
Persephone laughed and rolled her eyes. “I’m being serious, you know,” she said. “You’re going to be a father.”
Axel smiled back. “So was I,” he said. “This is amazing news. I will return to Insipia as soon as I can.”
“I would certainly hope so,” Persephone said. “I look forward to seeing you again. Anyway, I’ve got to go. I’ve got a challenger at the gym coming any minute now.”
“Alright,” Axel said. “I’ll see you soon.”
Upon hanging up, Axel felt a rush of emotions. He certainly had never expected to be a dad, but he welcomed the news, even if the prospect was daunting.
“Well guys,” the mercenary said as he rejoined the rest of the crew in the living quarters. “It turns out that I’m gonna be a dad.”
“Say again?” Cyrus asked, raising an eyebrow.
“You heard me, Captain,” Axel said. “Persephone’s pregnant.”
“Congratulations,” Taraka said.
“The thought of you raising a child is a terrifying thought,” Cyrus laughed. “But congratulations.”
“Thanks guys,” Axel said. “If you don’t mind, I’d like to stop at Insipia on the way to the next job. I’m sure you understand.”
“Look,” Gaster said. “I’ve seen pregnant women before. They’re angry and frightening. You wanna stay as far away from that planet as you can until that kid comes out.”
“Then she’ll be even angrier when I do show up,” Axel replied.
“Well, don’t say I didn’t warn you.”
Axel simply chuckled and looked out the viewport at the stars as the ship left Hibernia’s atmosphere. It didn’t matter what Gaster said, he was going to face this challenge just as he had everything else life had thrown his way.
Notes: Well, that was certainly a fun reveal. Persephone’s pregnancy was an idea DragonStorm and I came up with to throw Axel off. I literally burst out laughing when his response was simply “nice.” It was a fun way to wrap up the session.
This chapter covers the rest of Session 34, but I decided it made sense to have a time jump of about a week or so after the events of the beginning of the session from last chapter, which wrapped up the Troyva arc. The party didn’t do a whole lot this session, just look for wild Pokemon. I generated a random planet and decided to have some fun with it by giving it an interesting description and throwing a bunch of Salandits and a Salazzle at them. They had some good luck rolling gender for them too, so both Gaster and Axel ended up with female ones that can evolve.
The only other thing of note here is that this was the last session Alec attended before dropping out of the campaign. I still had some plans for Kasey as a character though, so she stuck around as an NPC much like Ace.
Post-Chapter Challenge: Well, now you know that Axel and Persephone are going to have a baby! Today’s challenge is simple. What should they name their baby? Since the gender has yet to be revealed, feel free to come up with one for each or pick a more unisex one that works for either.
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 rest of the Spacemon saga, join the Spacemon Discord server, or like our Facebook page to stay updated on all things Spacemon! Click here for the next exciting installment of Spacemon: Frontier!