Tektōn - Chapter 1 - Arthur_Magnus (2024)

Chapter Text

The world crashed, and I felt my body being thrown to the side of a wall. I could vaguely make out the rumbling sound of a charging train, and I groaned slightly at the impact. My senses were shot to hell and back as if my body was numb all over.

My breathing was hitched, almost painful. I felt nauseous, as if I could puke at almost any second. I tried to steady myself. There was a weight on my arm as if something was strapped on there, and I could tell I was wearing a backpack of some kind behind me.

“Now then… why don’t you tell us who you are exactly?” An almost dark voice spoke from above me.

As I looked up, I noticed two people. A woman maybe a few years older than me, and a man wearing a blue uniform. The symbol on his shirt pocket seemed to indicate his status as a Train Conductor or a Trainmaster. Or something relating to trains. I peeked out of the window, seeing a vast desert of some kind rushing past us. Was I on a train?

“Did you have to throw him that hard?” The woman’s voice brought me back to reality, as I stumbled onto my feet. Through my own bangs which fell over my eyes, I looked at her. Her tone of voice was more neutral than unkind, and there was a distinct authority in her tone as if she were addressing someone of a lower rank.

The Trainmaster had a scowl on his face. “Well… you’re the one who reported the intruder, Miss!”

“I did. But looking at his confused state… perhaps he himself has no idea of the situation he is in,” she speculated. I coughed slightly, feeling a charred sensation in my lungs prompting her to kneel, looking at me at eye level. “I suppose it’s that time already… Can you tell us who you are?”

Who I am? Who…I am? Who am I?

I shook my head. “I...I don’t remember…?”

“We found your ID.” The Trainmaster cut in, as he showed off a thin piece of plastic. There was a name and a photograph there, and a date of birth, and I could spot the title of the “Unovan National Registry” labelled above all the other details. The Trainmaster looked at the ID. “Alessander Tektonius. Sounds like a fake name if there was one.”

Strangely, despite my confusion and the man’s obvious hostility, I found myself agreeing with the Trainmaster. Alessander Tektonius. An unnecessarily complicated name. The first name being a bastardization of ‘Alexander’, no doubt. And the latter sounded… Greek or Latin.

And this name was my own? It was hard to believe. I could distinctly recall my name being closer to Indo-European in terms of spelling and pronunciation.

Of course, my own inability to recall my precise name is another matter entirely.

“And what about that thing strapped to your hand? Looks fancy. And like a Pokegear.” The Trainmaster’s words caused me to snap back into attention. It looks like a what?

“A Pokegear.” The woman supplied, making me realize I had spoken that last bit aloud. “It’s a communication device and PDA most commonly used in Indigo and sometimes in Sinnoh. Ah…” She spoke with realization. “You’re from Unova, aren’t you? I believe they use a different device called an Xtransciever there.”

A fictional communication device. I was careful not to let that slip, as I could feel my heart beat slightly faster. I looked down at my shaking hands, identifying a strangely familiar-looking blue and black device strapped to the back of my arm.

“What happened?” I said, my voice tense and strained as if I had not spoken in weeks. The woman and Trainmaster both hesitated for a second.

The woman shrugged. “You tell us. I was in the compartment next to the one you were in. The people were saying that you were... screaming.” She said, her face twisting into a slight frown at that last part.

“Of course, Miss Ame was swift to apprehend you after that. And you were brought here and put in an isolated compartment for interrogation,” the Trainmaster concluded. “We also asked the other passengers around about you. The ones in your compartment definitely hadn’t noticed you until you screamed, and no one saw you enter the train. It’s as if you appeared out of thin air, screaming.”

“Someone likely must have teleported him.” The woman—Ame, the man called her—said. She stood up, and I stared at her hips in a daze, fascinated by the Pokeballs about her belt.

The casual talk about teleportation, this strange, overwhelming sense of unease, and the demeanour by which they were speaking of my strange circ*mstances… it somehow dragged my mind to one concrete conclusion:

It seemed we were no longer in Kansas anymore, Toto.

“W-where is this train going in any case?” I asked, stumbling slightly onto the seat adjacent to me. The cushions were rough, as I tried to steady myself.

“To Grandview Station in Reborn City. This is the Lawrence Mail, connecting the Region of Corinth to Reborn.” The Trainmaster said, unsurely. He looked around, slight confusion on his expression. Ame’s expression on the other hand was confusion and her eyes were… looking above me… what? There was a chill behind me, as if someone had grabbed my shoulder with an icy hand. “We should be reaching soon. And hold on, shouldn’t we be slowing down, right about now-”

“GET DOWN!” Someone yelled, but I couldn’t quite be sure whom as everything seemed to scream at that moment. Metal grated, stone tumbled, and the world burst like a bubble. Everything around me seemed to flip over as I was blinded by a searing light in front of me, and a blazing flame behind.

And then, a painful ringing sensation racked my ears. The screams and sounds of chaos and destruction didn’t seem to stop around me, forming an endless, overwhelming serenade. A flash of light somewhere behind me—maybe another explosion? I was vaguely aware of someone's arms around me, and I could hear them speak with strong, commanding words towards someone else. I could also feel something warm trickling down my skull as red clouded portions of my vision. Was I bleeding….?

Suddenly, everything seemed to go silent. There were still shouting and panicked noises in the background, but it seemed distant.

My body hurt like hell. My head more so. The ringing in my head refused to die down, as I sensed people running and moving all around me. I suddenly became aware of someone’s hands on my shoulder, shaking me slightly, and their voice saying my name.

“Alex! Alex!” I blinked, and suddenly Ame came into view, right in front of me. “Wake up! Oh, thank god! You seem alright.”

Suddenly, nausea struck. I felt like vomiting, but I held it in with a terse look on my face.

“Wha- What happened?” I asked, my voice hoarse.

“There was an attack.” She said, a somewhat relieved expression on her face that I still had the ability to converse. “A bomb went off in the station and on the train.”

I felt sick. A terrorist attack? And I was caught in the explosion? The next words which escaped my lips took absurd effort.

“A-and the other guy? The… conductor fellow?” The guilty, disappointed look on Ame’s face said it all.

“He couldn’t make it out in time.” She said in surprising bluntness, yet I could also tell a tense tiredness in her tone. “From what I could make out, a piece of shrapnel hit him on the head, and his death was instant.” She paused for a second, before smiling weakly. “Despair managed to bring us both out though, so that’s a bit of an achievement. But the others in the station…”

I looked down, in slight shock. A man had died. Only metres away from me at that. And many more people had died as well—other people in the station and on the trains. But I had a question.

“Despair?” And suddenly, I became aware of the humanoid figure to my left, standing close to the white-haired woman.

My breath hitched at its presence. There was something distinctly inhuman about the figure, despite its humanoid build and feminine appearance. It was small and petite, maybe around two-thirds my own height. Its skin was white and hairless, almost plastic-esque, and its green hair curled over its face in a distinct arc, showcasing a bright red eye. The red fin on its chest and the long flowing gown had made it instantly recognizable in my eyes.

A Gardevoir. A real-life, bonafide Gardevoir was standing right in front of my eyes. I nodded slightly, my confused daze apparent.

“Thanks, Despair.” I mumbled, looking away slightly. The Embrace Pokemon nodded in acknowledgement as well, before vanishing in a flash of light as Ame withdrew her.

There was a moment of stiff, uncomfortable silence. I could see Police Officers and Firemen and Pokemon trainers and even ordinary civilians all around us moving to save as many as they could. Ame looked like she wanted to say something, but she kept her mouth shut for the moment.

Suddenly, a garishly cheerful voice spoke as they approached us.

“Hihi~!” She spoke, as Ame sighed, turning to face the approaching woman with an exasperated look on her face.

A green-haired woman pranced over to us as I stared in fascination. She seemed to be close to my own age, maybe a few years my senior. I noticed her fairly skimpy, yellow cheerleader’s outfit. The police officers easily gave this eccentric woman a wide berth and allowed her in, suggesting some level of prominence.

“Julia.” Ame greeted her with a tense voice. There was amusem*nt there as well, but it was carefully muted. “I suppose you aren’t responsible for… well, this.” She said pointing to the burning ruins of Grandview Station.

“Whaat~?” She said, her voice betraying an amused tone. “I was just back at the Gym and I saw the big BOOM from there, so I came running!” She had a strange smile on her face as she did so. “Cuz if things are exploding, I have to be there!”

What the hell. Is she a pyromaniac?

“Uh-huh.” Ame shook her head with a sigh, turning back to look at the ruin of the station. The flames had died down, and I noticed jets of water being fired towards it by a whole platoon of various water-type Pokemon. The amount of people escaping the ruin had slowed to a trickle. I watched in fascination. “It seemed to have been a deliberate attack,” Ame observed. “The train was rigged to destroy Grandview Station. Or else…”

“Hmph.” Julia huffed slightly. “Whoever it was who did that was an amateur at this. I mean, the whole structure is still intact! What’s the point of anything if you plan on doing such a half-assed job.”

“...Right.” Ame said after a momentary pause. “Whoever was responsible for this should probably be still in the area,” she said after a moment of thought. “I should head back to the Grand Hall. Organize a perimeter around the area and begin the search.”

She turned to me, her eyes lingering on my forehead. I suddenly became keenly aware of the pain in that area. I reached up and examined the blood leaking from a cut there. A glass shard or something must have slashed through when we were making our escape.

“You should have that checked out,” she said with concern. “They should have set up a medical station here. Ask one of the police officers for its whereabouts.”

I nodded. It was a bit confusing, and I was overall in a daze. I needed time to think about…everything now.

“After that, please meet me in the Grand Hall. Just tell them your name, and they’ll let you in. We need to discuss… your current arrangement.” She turned to Julia. “Julia, I trust that you have things covered here?”

“Right, I do, boss!” She gave a mock salute. “You won’t see any explosions this side of Peridot, no siree!”

Ame nodded, her expression clearly lacking in confidence. She put a hand on my shoulder. “As for all this… don’t worry about it. I’ll take care of it.”

I nodded, still in a daze, as she promptly left, offering me a wave as she did so. The surroundings and the people around me suddenly felt utterly alien. I stumbled slightly on the asphalt, my legs feeling like lead.

“Heyhey! You’re Alex, right?” Julia asked cheerfully, stepping up and offering me a hand which I accepted, pulling myself up. “I’m Julia! The Electric Type Gym Leader of Peridot Ward! Nice to meetcha!”

“Y-yeah,” I said in a shaky tone. “Nice to meet you too. I’m… Alex, I guess.” She nodded as we walked slowly off to the side, a policeman guiding us to the medical camp they had set up.

Grandview Station was a large, spacious building located at the bank of a purple lake. There were two or three roads diverting away from the Station. Some went north while one large road went eastward towards where Ame had pointed out the Grand Hall looming in the distance.

A series of tents and desks had been set up. I quietly observed the chaos unfolding before me. There were dozens, maybe hundreds of lost and injured people before me, some of them reporting their status to officers wearing blue, others seeking treatment by some doctors.

I could also see the many Pokemon there. A Chansey provided assistance to a doctor treating a woman’s twisted ankle, an Audino dabbing ointment onto another man’s burns. There was a Squirtle as well, firing water into plastic cups as a makeshift water dispenser.

My stomach lurched slightly as I stared at the grievous injuries sustained by other people caught in the accident. Compared to them, my own injuries were relatively minor.

“Neat! Pop Quiz!” Julia suddenly spoke. I was a bit surprised, unaware that she was even following me. “Are you going to challenge Reborn’s Pokemon League?”

The question caught me off-guard. The Pokemon League? Childish dreams of imagining myself as a Pokemon Trainer began to bubble back to the surface, and I forced them back down with a gulp.

“Maybe?” I said with hesitation. “I mean, I don’t really have any of my stuff or anything, so I don’t really know…”

Her eyes widened at that. “Oh right! Sorry about that.” She said in a surprisingly genuine, apologetic tone. “Hmm… but do consider it though. We have very few challengers these days, and if you do I’ll probably be your first obstacle,” she said with a smirk. “Hmm… I do think you’ll be a great trainer though.”

“Oh? What makes you say that?” I couldn’t help but ask.

“Just a feeling,” she chirped before swiftly turning around and leaving with a wave. I waved back as I looked at the camps, feeling a bit lost.

I ended up standing in a line where a few people with less serious injuries were being treated. I held a handkerchief up to my head, and while the wound seemed to have largely clotted, there was still some blood trickling down.

I observed the doctor as the line began to shrink. Unlike the ones in the other tents who were wearing white coats, this one seemed to be dressed in all black and had a Croagunk of all things assisting him. His purple hair was strangely distinctive as well. As the line moved, I was able to take a better look at his features. He had faded purple hair, greying in some areas, and a face whose lines made him seem older than he actually was.

The boy in front of me moved when his turn came. “Yowch! It stings!” he said as the man applied disinfectant to the wound on his arms.

“Only temporarily,” he said in a soft, almost cold voice. “Your wound needs to be disinfected before treatment. It may sting for now, but it will burn far worse if you leave it as is, and fester if you neglect it entirely. If you want that, I can stop.”

“N-no, no sir. Please continue,” the boy said with a whimper.

“Hmph. The transaction of exchanging short-term pain for long-term healing is likely difficult for someone young to understand,” he said, more to himself rather than the boy. He proceeded to clean and apply bandages to the boy’s injury “You do not yet have the experience to know why the world has hurt you. Thus, you are forced to trust the adults in your life. But all too often, they prove themselves incapable of earning that trust.”

My only thought throughout that speech was: ‘Why is he suddenly spouting his whole life philosophy out of nowhere?’

He sighed as he took a final look at the wound. “There, it is done. It should be all better, yes?”

“Yes, sir.”

“Worth waiting for?”

“Yes, thank you, sir,” he said as he scampered off.

And suddenly it was my turn.

I was definitely quieter than the other patients, quietly submitting myself to his care. Soon, he applied an ointment on my head after checking for a concussion, then he bandaged my cut which thankfully wasn’t very deep.

“Thank you,” I said, as I stood up.

“It is no problem,” he responded in that same monotone tone.

“May I ask for your name?” I suddenly blurted out.

“My name?” There was a furrow in his brow. “I suppose it is no harm... I am Dr. Corey Molinar.”

“I see, thank you, Dr Molinar,” I said, nodding at the man before quickly walking away. Something about him gave me the creeps… but I also had the feeling that that was not going to be the last interaction I had with that man.

The city reeked, I observed, as I walked down Grandview Avenue, the lakeside road from the station to the Grand Hall. The potent stench seemed to not only emanate from the murky, filthy waters of Azurine Lake but also the piles of garbage casually strewn about. I observed an open drain spilling over and a pile of trash which I could have sworn had just blinked at me. I was a bit perplexed before chalking it off as a Trubbish or something.

Ah. And there was that other thing. Being sent to the world of Pokemon. A… dark, brooding, edgy world of Pokemon, but a world of Pokemon nonetheless.

I could see the ‘Grand Hall’ as Ame put it looming in the distance, but I could tell that it would take some time for me to get there on foot. Enough to muse over my current situation.

I recalled memories many years old, about playing FireRed and Sapphire and Platinum and becoming fascinated by the entirety of the Pokemon franchise. I never got to play the 3DS or Switch games, but my affection for them remained through the Anime and the Manga and whatever other games I could still play.

I never expected myself to be Isekai’d there though. Especially not… in what seems like a region which did not appear in any of the games I had played.

Reborn. That was the name of this region. A bit of a weird name, to be named after a verb, but it works, I guess.

I clenched a fist, pausing for a moment. What I lacked right now was information. I didn’t know anything about this place, what sorts of systems are present, and whether or not there was any method for me to get back home. There was also that murky haze in the back of my mind, and I could feel a migraine swelling, causing me to wince.

I idly wondered if they had paracetamol here.

My memories, however… were in a jumble as well. I was aware of general details—of my age and my old occupation as a college student. But the specifics escaped me, especially in regard to my old social life. I had… a parent. Maybe two? And… not many friends? And did I have a love interest?

I scratched my head. I really needed to calm down and think about this, but not now. I looked up, quite impressed by the massive building which stood before me.

The Grand Hall was a massive complex, a singular building standing tall in a small, surprisingly green garden. Surrounded by drab walls, I idly noticed the somewhat strict security standing in front of the gate. Nervousness clung to me as I approached the entrance and submitted myself to their inspection. A lady security officer was seated at a desk with a notepad listing details.

“Name?” She addressed me as I passed through a magnetic scanner.

“Alex,” I said, the unfamiliar name passing through my lips. “Alex Tektonius.”

“Ah. Ame said you were coming,” she said with a nod. “Go right through, straight ahead, and ask the front desk for her.”

“Right,” I responded with a nod. I was in a daze as I wandered through the glass doors of the Grand Hall.

The air conditioning of the building was intense, a chill passing through my body as I could hear it grind overhead through the vents.

This Grand Hall place was the centre of administration of this region and it showed.

I could feel the stares on me as I passed through. The opening reception area was a massive platform with many different desks and stations all around. I could identify a shop of some kind, and what looked to be a Pokemon Center off to my left. There were also people—a lot of people actually—some of them looking at documents, others tending to their Pokemon, and another group of people huddling near a TV watching a news broadcast. I winced as I overheard the reporter talk about the explosion at Grandview but quickly made my way to the front desk.

A simple exchange of greetings happened with the man stationed there. Soon, I found myself being shuttled towards Ame’s office.

She was waiting for me, seated behind a desk working on some paperwork as she looked up as I entered. I waved at her nervously.

She smiled however, offering me a seat.

“Well then, Mr. Alex. Shall we get started?”

Tektōn - Chapter 1 - Arthur_Magnus (2024)


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