Oh Fuchsia, Fuchsia, Fuchsia (mostly written to remind myself that is how it is spelled, against all logic of pronunciation); despite your zoos that sent me into a spiral of wondering why I was even collecting ‘em all, other than for some twisted entertainment value found in Japanese c*ck-fighting simulators made for children, you have some pretty nifty moments.
Because I don’t always keep a Pokédrag king or queen around who can cut a female dog-like Pokémon, navigating Fuchsia became interesting, as the entire city was built around zigging and zagging around penned-in animals. Therefore, it was hardly a surprise, when I entered the gym to earn my badge from Koga, that what looked like an open space was in fact cordoned off by invisible walls.
Now, I was told that here there be ninja of all sorts, and while I have poison and psychic Pokémon thrown at me in equal measure, I decided it was time for a show. I set Ororo up on one side of me, Daenerys on the other, while Kaiser, Zaphod, Ms. Jumbo, and Slimer stood behind us as backup. And we danced. Have you seen Robyn’s Call Your Girlfriend video? We danced across that gym, awkwardly putting our faces on the floor with our butts wiggling in the air, before flushing our crotches with the floor and wiggling those tushes back up again. Because the idea of ninja I could see in plain sight behind invisible walls was so patently absurd, it was the only measured response I could call forth in the moment.
I then proceeded to kick some ninja ass.
In fact the performance, and perhaps their role as backup dancers, so inspired a few in my entourage, that they proceeded to give their acts a bit of a polish. First came Kaiser, who decided to puff up a bit larger, and get even more suave in his hair-do, a typical Pidgeot. He let those wings soar and decided he was declaring the space around him as his. It seemed the natural response.
Then came Zaphod. I hadn’t quite understood his tactics yet, but he did seem to enjoy his Tri-Attack, and it was a rather impressive display. Due to his frequent use of it, it was hardly a surprise to see him just grow another head and become a Dodrio. The heads themselves also seemed much more angry. If I had to share space with two other heads, I could well see this happening to me. I hoped they could keep their private and professional lives separate.
Then came along Slimer. I guess the floating blob became tiring (and it really only has the floating thing going for it), as suddenly a red hand punched through the shadows and out came a Haunter. Appropriately enough, he did learn the move Shadow Punch. I suppose the name Slimer was now amusing, as opponents and audiences would expect a rather jovial sidekick (if we go by the cartoons at least), only to find a somewhat angry looking ghost.
Ms. Jumbo just looked on, amused.
Proceeding to dance through the invisible hallways, we finally made it to Koga, who prattled off something about being ninja and defeating me. Between thunderbolts and flamethrowers, his Pokémon were quickly all curled on the ground, unable to poison or put anyone to sleep. He bowed, said something humbling, and then proceeded to hand me the Soul Badge. Somehow this would allow me to Surf! I’m not entirely sure what Soul had to do with Surf beyond sibilant alliteration, but I shrugged. As someone who did not yet have Surf, it seemed a moot point anyway.
Well, after that thrilling escapade, it was time for the Safari Zone! Taking my strongest Pokémon, I was surprised when I was told about the mechanics of throwing bait, rocks, and Safari Balls. My mind may have wandered to a costume party paying homage to traditional African masks and garb, but instead I had some knock-off Pokéball thrust into my hand. What I found was I did not use my party at all! So, taking them back and storing them on Bill’s PC (I’m still not sure how they’ve managed Cloud pet storage), I marched right back there with Daenerys by my side for moral support.
We caught a bevy of Pokémon types. First there was a female Venonat who told us her plans to be a beautiful, ethereal-looking moth one day. She confided that her name was actually Heimlich and attempted her German accent. I didn’t find it quite convincing, but I tend to be a bit of a critic in that regard. Then there was a Rhyhorn who came charging by and was prancing around us. He let us know of his hatred for spiders as he told us he liked being called Alexis. Then a group of five male eggs … no, I really do not know how eggs move of their own free will or have a sex pre-hatching, so I think they just teleport. Teleporting eggs make as much sense as everything else. They told us of their obsession with a chicken blog, and insisted they were collectively named Willow. Following suit was a Chansey, who cupped an egg in her hands as she jubilantly explained she was known as Hesse.
A buzzer sounded and brought us back to the start. At first I couldn’t decide if I should go back, but there was a sign promising a reward for the return of golden teeth that were supposedly just lying about. You know, golden teeth lying about in a safari zone filled with tall grasses and Pokémon. Paying another 500, I took my requisite Safari Balls, headed back into the zone and ventured to find the teeth, which were just randomly lying about in a Pokéball. The first place one would think to look. Then it was off to find the ‘secret house’ that was apparently in the zone.
It sounds much more fascinating than it was, as I was dashing to make sure time did not run out. If anything, it was a Benny Hill comedy with wild Pokémon at my heels. Eventually I succeeded in finding the ‘secret house’ and was given the ability to Surf by a man thrilled to have his golden teeth back.
Fuchsia, Fuchsia, Fuchsia. That was certainly a different way of going about things.