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Pokemon Mystery Dungeon: Adventures into Light: An Introduction, A Dungeon, and A Promise

by Rex

Rex In which a world is brought to light, an adventure is begun, and a friendship is made.
The Darkness surrounded him, covered him like a blanket. No, heavier than a blanket, it squeezed him from all sides, a crushing weight, he couldn’t breathe. He couldn’t see. He could barely think. His arms were pinned, his legs refused to listen. Was this it? Was this how it would end?

“No, it can’t end this way! I refuse!”

And then there was a light. A blinding brightness just ahead of him, threatening to be swallowed by the darkness any second. His last chance. He summoned up what inner strength he had, fought the darkness ensnaring him. He wrenched one arm free, then the other. He forced his legs to work, and kicked. It was a sensation somewhere between forcing his way through thick brambles and swimming, the darkness clawed at him as he fought his way forward. The light was so close now, all he had to do was reach out and…


He was falling. The darkness lifted from around him, he could see again - blue sky for miles around him, studded with bright white clouds. Ahead of him, a hazy black splotch was visible for only a moment before it was covered by an encroaching cloud. Or perhaps, fled into it? He looked down, the ground was rushing up to meet him quick: green trees, a river lazily snaking its way through them. In the distance, a yellow beach. Beyond that, the deep blue sea. Had he stumbled out of one end right into another? He could feel the air buffeting him as he fell, hear the wind whistling through his ears, see the tapestry of colors below him. One last bright moment of freedom then. Compared to the crushing darkness he’d escaped from, maybe this wouldn’t be so bad. He squeezed his eyes shut.


The Treecko looked up, through the breaks in the canopy. The sun was high in the sky, and he was making good time. For what must have been the tenth time since he’d set out that morning, he double checked the straps on his satchel and belt, making sure they were pulled tight. He fiddled with the knot holding the blue bandanna around his neck, making sure it hadn’t come loose at all. He worried - he was a natural worrier, really.

He wanted to make a good first impression. Once he crossed the river, he’d be halfway to Treasure Town. There’d be no going back then, it was on to town, on to the Adventurers Lodge and their notoriously stringent entrance exam. He would return to Capim Town a failure, or he would not return at all. He took a deep breath, settled himself once again, and set out. He would undoubtedly repeat this routine again, and every time he did, it was a barely disguised moment for him to reconsider his current course of action.

Ahead of him, he was beginning to see the telltale signs of a Mystery Dungeon. A shimmer on the horizon, followed by jutting rocks and thick undergrowth funneling him towards an entrance that was the one break in a treeline so thick it might as well have been a wall. This was somewhat odd, the Treecko was following a common hiking route for travelers who couldn’t afford, or didn't want to take, a Lapras Liner between the two coastal towns, and there had not been a Mystery Dungeon reported on it going back generations. Still, stranger things had happened.

He was broken from his thoughts by the last thing he’d wanted to see: a Pokemon, collapsed by the entrance. It was an Oshawott, lying on its stomach, wearing a tannish coat, with a darker brown wide brimmed hat lying nearby. The Treecko hurried over, and rolled the Pokemon onto his back. The Oshawott was breathing fine, and nothing seemed broken. The poor Pokemon had likely tried to make it through the Mystery Dungeon on his own, only to faint and be ejected.

The Treecko kneeled over the Oshawott, and shook his shoulder. “Hey buddy? You okay?”


He was swimming in a sea of consciousness. His entire body felt sore, the one thing mooring his mind to any sense of reality. His head hurt the most, the shock of pain at its worst when he tried to open his eyes. The light was blindingly bright. His vision couldn’t focus anyway, so he kept his eyes closed. For how long he faded in and out of consciousness like that, he couldn’t tell. It wasn’t exactly unpleasant, pain aside. The ground was nice and cool, the sunlight felt nice. Beneath the pain, something about the whole situation did feel off, but he couldn’t exactly put his finger on what. He wasn’t really in any state to ponder it anyway.

This lasted until, when his mind had returned to his body once again, things felt very different. The soreness and headache were mostly gone. He was on his back now, someone was podding and shaking him. Their voice seemed far away and muffled at first, but they were clearly calling to him. Asking if he was okay. He tried to speak, but all that came out was a groan. He chanced to open his eyes, and took in the hazy, green and red colored, blur that swam in his vision. Slowly his eyes focused, the image sharpened. He was looking at a Pokemon, a Treecko.

The Treecko clasped its hands together. “You’re awake! I was starting to get worried.”

He blinked at it. A statement made itself apparent somewhere in the back of his mind. He reached for it, and much like his vision, it slowly came into focus as well. The Pokemon had spoken. The Pokemon. Had spoken.


The Pokemon had Spoken.​

He shot up, causing the Treecko to stumbling backwards a few feet in surprise. “Hey! It’s okay, I’m not going to hurt you!” The Treecko said, trying to be soothing past its startled tone. His head was swimming again, he’d moved too quickly. He rubbed his eyes, forcing them to focus again. It was most certainly a Treecko he was speaking to, accessorized with a belt, satchel, and bandanna. He stared at it harder, it fidgeted.

“You talked!” he said once he remembered how to. It was more of a statement than a question, and that seemed to catch the Treecko a bit off guard.

“Er, yes?” it replied, crossing its arms and cocking its head in a way that made it look almost human. The fact that that didn’t unnerve him, was in of itself unnerving.

“But, Pokemon don’t talk,” he pressed, sounding less sure of himself with every word.

The Treecko didn’t seem to know how to respond to that. He spent a moment searching for the words, before saying simply, “You’re talking just fine.”

“I’m a human!” he asserted, finding his confidence once again.

That seemed to surprise the Treecko all over again. It blinked once, then twice, and looked him up and down. “You, uh, seem like a perfectly normal Oshawott to me!”

“Oshawott?” he muttered. He looked down at himself, past the slight white muzzle he hadn’t noticed he had before. His body was covered in sky blue fur, and was complete with a scalchop resting on his belly. He was wearing a coat - his coat surely, though it was too large for him - he pushed the sleeves down a bit to get a better look at his hands. Paws, with slight clawed fingers and a thumb. He stood up on navy blue, three toed feet, and looked behind him, at where his coat bunched up a bit around the base of a paddle shaped tail. He reached his hands up, and felt experimentally around his head, and found his very triangular ears.

“I’m an Oshawott,” he repeated to himself.

The Treecko approached him cautiously, reaching down to collect a hat - his hat? - that had been discarded on the ground. The Pokemon, his fellow Pokemon, offered it to him with a slight frown, his voice filled with genuine sounding concern when he asked, “Are you alright? I’ve never seen you around here before, what were you doing here?”

He accepted the hat, and placed it atop his head. It balanced between his ears, a bit too large for him, but it felt right up there. He thought back, or tried to think back. What had he been doing here? He’d been laying on the ground, but before that? Try as he might, he was drawing a blank. He tried to reach further back, in case any older memories might have had a clue. With a chill, however, he realized that he didn’t have any older memories either. Only the vague sensation of floating, and falling, and then waking up here.

“I,” he stuttered, “I don’t remember!”

“You don’t remember?” The Treecko said, “Nothing at all?” When he shook his head, the Treecko’s frown deepened, “How about your name? Do you remember that?”

He reached back into his mind again, desperate to at least find something he could latch onto. It took some searching, but eventually a name came forward. It stood out to him - alone aside from the conviction that he was, or at least used to be, human - on the blank canvas of his memory.


“Archie,” the Treecko repeated with a nod. The Pokemon laid a hand on Archie’s shoulder, and smiled, “I’m Spencer. It’s nice to meet you, despite the circumstances.”

He allowed himself to relax somewhat. Spencer seemed friendly, helpful even, now that Archie was over the original shock of a talking Pokemon. He smiled back at the Treecko, and nodded in return. The other Pokemon - still a strange concept to grasp, he was a Pokemon - let his hand drop, and took a few steps back, giving Archie some space. In fact, he looked past the Oshawott, at something else.

When Archie turned to look as well, he was greeted by break in the treeline, which seemed unnaturally dense around them now that he was paying attention to it. The canopy above them was thick, and barely any light was able to get through, certainly not enough for them to tell what there was on the other side of the clearing. He looked back at the Treecko and asked: “Where are we?”

“On the road, about a day and a half out from Capim Town,” Spencer replied. The Treecko pointed towards the dark break in the treeline, “About another day’s journey that way is Treasure Town. I’m heading there.” He paused for a minute, seeming to gather his thoughts, before continuing, “You should come with me. There’s an Adventurers Lodge in Treasure Town, someone there might be able to help you.”

Archie considered this. He’d never heard of Treasure Town or Capim Town, but it seemed like the former was closer, and Spencer was headed that way anywhere. He didn’t really have any other options, even if it was just a straight road back towards Capim Town, he didn’t know anyone there, or at least, didn’t remember if he did. He looked down the road Spencer had come down, then back towards the clearing before them, and finally to Spencer again. “Yeah. Yeah alright.”

“Great!” Spencer smiled, unable to hide his enthusiasm, “We should get going then, we’re burning daylight.” The Treecko started towards the dark clearing, and, after one final look back down the road towards Capim Town, Archie followed. Very soon, it became too dark to see, but he could hear Spencer walking ahead of him. Soon, those noises became quiet splashes, and another few seconds after that, Archie could feel water flowing gently around his toes. The canopy gave way, and Archie’s jaw dropped.

They were standing in a river. Shallow areas all around them were cut into paths and rooms by deeper blue areas of water, or occasionally even tall grasses growing out of the water so thick they appeared impenetrable. Together, the water and grass formed a maze that stretched on as far as the eye could see. He looked back at Spencer, who seemed a bit bemused at his reaction, “What is this place?”

“This is a Mystery Dungeon, though I don’t know the name,” Spencer replied, “It looks like the river itself was the center of it. It probably only formed very recently.” The Treecko lead Archie down one of the shallow passages, but offered no further explanation on what exactly he meant by what he just said. Instead, Spencer said: “Does nothing here look familiar? I thought maybe you came in here and got knocked out, and that’s why you can’t remember anything.”

“I think I’d remember seeing a place like this before,” the Oshawott said, defensively. “What’s a Mystery Dungeon, anyway?”

The Treecko stopped, and turned to face him with an apologetic look, “Sorry, I forgot you might not recognize that term, what with your memory and all.” He turned again, and motioned for Archie to follow him as he continued, “Mystery Dungeons are… Well, they’re weird. Reality seems to fold in on itself, the inside is always different. It’s actually kind of hard to explain, and I’m not really an expert.”

They took a turn and wound up in another room. There was another Pokemon there, sleeping. A lily pad resting on top of a blue quadruped, with a yellow bill: Lotad, Archie’s brain helpfully supplied. Spencer held up his paw, motioning for the Oshawott to keep quiet. They crept around the edge of the room, following a wall of grass that, as Archie suspected, he couldn’t push through no matter how hard he tried. It was only after they exited the ‘room’ and rounded another bend in the shallow corridor, that the Treecko allowed himself to breathe again.

“What was that about?” Archie asked, looking over his shoulder back towards where they had come from. The Lotad was out of sight, but it hadn’t woken up while they could see it at least.

“Sorry, but the Pokemon you find in Mystery Dungeons, um,” the Treecko paused again. He seemed to do this often, Archie wondered if he had trouble organizing his thoughts. Eventually, Spencer continued, “They’re not the friendliest sort. If we woke it up, that Lotad would have lashed out at us.”

Archie considered this. He’d have to take Spencer’s word for it, he guessed. It wasn’t like he had any experience that could contradict the Treecko. Something did bother him, though: “If this place is new, and as dangerous as you’re implying, why was it sleeping here?”

Spencer motioned for him to follow again, he apparently wanted them to hurry on. Once Archie fell into step behind him, the Treecko explained, “Pokemon in Mystery Dungeons are about as weird and inexplicable as the Dungeons themselves. No one really knows where they come from, or why they’re so angry all the time. When a Pokemon gets knocked out in a Mystery Dungeon, they get teleported out. Usually, they wind up back at the entrance they came from, but you could knock out a dozen Pokemon you find in here, and no one at any known entrance will ever see any of them.”

The grass walls surrounding them opened up, but the water surrounding them was still very deep, leaving them still stuck on a shallow corridor. They continued along in relative silence for a while, Archie stuck in his thoughts while Spencer kept an eye on their surroundings. It wasn’t until the Treecko suddenly stopped, and the Oshawott bumped into him, that he was brought back to the present.

“Do you hear that?” Spencer asked. And, now that he was listening, Archie could. The sound of bubbles breaching the surface of the water and popping. The Treecko scanned the surface of the water before pointing and shouting “Over there!”

The bubbles were approaching them quickly, drawing up right beside their path before, with a splash, a Pokemon surfaced. Blue, with purple frills, a proportionally large head, but with no arms: Wooper. Spencer shouted in surprise, shoulder checking it back into the water before he was able to get a hold of himself. Not to be deterred, the Wooper surfaced again, shooting a jet of water from its mouth, hitting the Treecko in the gut, winding him.

“Are you alright!?” Archie asked, started.

“I’m fine, hit it back,” the Treecko wheezed.

A real trial by fire, then? Archie was a Pokemon now, that meant he could use Pokemon moves, right? He recognized the attack the Wooper had done as Water Gun. He should be able to do that too, right? No sooner had he thought about using said attack, though, he could feel the water building up in his throat. He spat back at the Wooper, who far from looking injured actually seemed quite refreshed by the attack! Somewhere deep in his mind he remembered: Wooper had the ability to absorb, and heal from, Water Type attacks. “Oops,” he muttered sheepishly.

Thankfully, Spencer actually knew what he was doing. He spread his arms out wide, causing twinkling green lights of energy to leach out of the Wooper’s body, before flying into the Treecko’s own. Archie recognized that move as well, Absorb. And unlike his own pitiful attempt with Water Gun, Spencer’s Absorb seemed to hurt the Wooper quite a bit, it fell back into the water, then disappeared into a beam of light.

The two Pokemon shot each other a look. “Sorry,” Archie offered, breaking eye contact to look down at his feet.

“No harm done,” the Treecko replied, “Just try to be more careful in the future, okay?”

This, Archie could promise to do. That Wooper wasn’t the last Pokemon the pair had to face on their way through the Dungeon. In fact, they faced several more just like it, a few Lotads, a couple Poliwags, and even a Barboach. He didn’t make the same mistake again, relying mostly on Tackles. He did, however, learn one trick he had up his sleeve. Following up one of Spencer’s Pounds against a Poliwag, Archie was struck by the sudden idea to slam his open palmed paws on either side of the Pokemon’s ‘head,’ knocking it out before it was able to get a move in edgewise.

“That’s Assurance!” Spencer had said, surprised, “Oshawott have to inherit that move from their fathers.”

“I wasn’t born an Oshawott,” Archie protested, “I was a human, I’m sure of it!”

Spencer hadn’t seemed so sure, but he was willing to let well enough alone. Soon after, they had a fight that didn’t go so well, and this time it was Archie that took the brunt of the damage. Once their attacker was dealt with, Spencer lead them into a side room, and then, over to a small object, half submerged in the water. It was a fruit, ovoid in shape, and blue. The Treecko handed it over to him, it felt firm in his paw, the skin was almost tough.

“This is an Oran Berry,” he explained, “Eat it, you’ll feel better.”

Archie had stared at the fruit quizzically, “Are you sure it’s safe?”

“Yes!” Spencer chuckled, “No one’s ever gotten sick eating an Oran Berry they found in a Dungeon, I promise you.” The Treecko waited until he’d already taken a cautious bite of it before adding, “As long as it’s not an Oren Berry!” Archie did feel better after eating it, but he still looked askance at every berry they picked up after that, much to Spencer’s continued amusement.

Eventually, his stomach started grumbling. Archie couldn’t remember the last time he had eaten, but it almost felt like this hunger was too soon. Spencer took his stomach’s protests very seriously, however, putting a rather large apple out of his satchel - how had it even fit? - and expertly splitting it in half. He’d borrowed Archie’s scalchop in order to do so, which left the Oshawott feeling strangely miffed. He’d already identified the small shell as being his, even if he’d only woken up with it very recently. Still, it wasn’t like he’d figured out how to make use of it yet, and he couldn’t argue with the results, it was a very delicious apple.

“Mystery Dungeons really sap your energy,” Spencer said between bites of his half of the apple, “If you don’t stay fed, you’ll eventually faint from hunger!”

“How long have we been in here?” Archie asked. The sun, unnervingly enough, hadn’t seemed to move at all since its position when they entered the dungeon. Archie supposed it was because of the whole reality folding in on itself thing Spencer had mentioned. It made tracking the time very difficult.

“A few hours by my count,” the Treecko replied, “We should be getting near the end, but if you get hungry again let me know, I brought plenty of provisions!”

“How does everything fit in that little bag?” Archie finally asked. He’d been wondering that for some time, as this apple wasn’t the first thing he’d seen the Treecko pull out of or put into that satchel.

“It’s a Wonder Bag!” Spencer said by way of explanation. Then, with a smile he added: “It’s a lot bigger on the inside.”

It was all so very strange to Archie, the bag, the Dungeon, the Pokemon. But Spencer treated it all as if it was the most normal thing. The Oshawott presumed it would be, to someone who had grown up with it. They continued on with only the occasional small talk. Spencer had, a few times, asked him again if anything seemed familiar to him, with Archie replying to the negative every time. Eventually, the Treecko seemed to realize the repeated references to his lost memory were upsetting the Oshawott, and dropped the subject.

Finally, they turned a corner and came up upon the wall of trees. There was another dark opening, covered by the canopy, an exit. Hopefully the right one, Archie had gotten hopelessly turned around traveling through this Dungeon. He trusted Spencer’s sense of direction though, and the Treecko certainly seemed excited to find the way out. Before they could leave, though, they heard a buzzing noise.

The Pokemon making the noise dropped down from above them, four wings flapping furiously. A teardrop head with giant antenna in the shape of narrowed eyes, a orange marking shaped almost like a snout on the face, with two beady black eyes as the nostrils. A Masquerain, a Bug Type Pokemon. This wasn’t good. Before they had a chance to react, it changed the way it was beating its wings, and buzzing noise rose to a shrill whistle. Both of them covered their ears, this was Bug Buzz, and as bad as it was for Archie it had to be worse for Spencer.

The Oshawott fired a Water Gun, the Bug Type tried to dodge but wasn’t able to get all the way out in time. The attack clipped it and knocked it off course, and it had to reorientate itself, ending its own attack in the process. They could not allow it to do that attack again. Beside him, Spencer was digging through his bag for an Oran Berry. This meant it was up to Archie to press the attack and keep it busy.

He rushed it. The Masquerain dodged his attempted Tackle, swung around and shot into his side instead, sending him sprawling. The Quick Attack was certainly painful, but it did mean the Bug Type was committing to the melee, at least for now. Archie got back to his feet and fired another Water Gun at it, and this time it dodged right into Spencer’s own attack, as the Treecko jumped up and smashed his tail into the Masquerain, Pouding it into the ground.

It took flight again, haphazardly, and this time moved all its wings at once, blowing a pale purple wind at both of them. The Ominous Wind hurt, naturally, but even worse, after launching it the Masquerain seemed to be moving double time. They each swung at it with a Tackle and Pound, but it wasn’t having any trouble dodging anymore. It even breezed by Archie’s Water Gun. At this point, Archie was beginning to get worried, they hadn’t come so far only to lose now, had they? Spencer’s warning that if they got knocked out, they’d wind up back at the entrance rang through his mind.

“Archie!” Spencer called to him, reaching into his bag and tossing a small seed his way. The Oshawott caught it, and was surprised to learn it was hot to the touch. “I’m going to distract it, while I do, get up behind it and eat that!”

No time to question his plan, the Treecko was already on the move. The Pokemon launched a flurry of Pound attacks at the Masquerain with fist, tail, and foot. The Pokemon was having no trouble dodging around every move, but its focus was entirely on the Treecko. Archie ran into position, while Spencer got a Quick Attack to the chest for his trouble. Archie threw the seed into his mouth and bit down.

A heat unlike any he’d ever felt before welled up in his mouth. When he opened his mouth again, a small plume of fire flew from his mouth, launching the seed fragments at the Masquerain. The burning bits of seed peppered its back, wings, and head, and exploded on impact. The now smoking Bug Type fell to Archie’s feet, and yet still it twitched and tried to take flight again. When the Oshawott brought his paws down on its back with an Assurance, however, it finally laid still, and disappeared into the light.

Spencer sat up from where the Masquerain had sent him sprawling, and said, with a weak smile: “Blast Seed. Gets them every time.”

With a smile of his own, Archie offered the Treecko a paw up, and, together, they limped out the exit. When they exited the covered path back onto the road, Archie was able to see that the sun had, in fact, been moving. It now hovered just above the treetops, in a sky being painted the colors of sunset. They continued walking for some time, but eventually found a protected spot just out of sight of the path to make camp. By sundown, they were sharing another apple, which Spencer had carefully baked over the campfire they now sat in front of.

They had been left in peace since leaving the Mystery Dungeon. In fact, they had yet to meet another Pokemon on the road, though Spencer didn’t find that terribly surprising. “Most Pokemon prefer to take the Lapras Liner between towns. Not too many Pokemon hike, for exactly the reason you saw. Never know when an otherwise safe road might suddenly spawn a Mystery Dungeon.”

Spencer was one of those rare Pokemon that enjoyed traveling the interior of the continent - apparently simply called the Grass Continent, though when Archie asked why it had that name, Spencer only shrugged - it seemed. He was, after all, attempting to join an Adventurers Lodge, where, according to the Treecko, such traveling was the norm. Which was why Spencer thought the Adventurers might be able to help him. They traveled all over, and had seen so much. The Oshawott spent some time ruminating on that, then finally worked up the nerve to ask the question he’d been meaning to ask since they’d met.

“Are there many humans around?”

Spencer was silent for a good long while. When he did speak, he spoke slowly, as if choosing his every word carefully. “Humans only exist in legends. That’s why I had such a hard time believing you.” Archie’s face fell, but the Treecko placed a hand on his shoulder again, locked eyes with him, and this time spoke more assuredly, “But, having traveled with you, I don’t think you seem like the lying sort, Archie. You earnestly believe you’re a human, so I believe you, too.”

Archie didn’t know what to say. Just like that, only a few hours fighting beside one another, was enough? Spencer was certainly the trusting sort, but it warmed his heart to know that the Treecko had come around all the same. “Thank you, Spens, really.”

“Spens?” The Treecko chuckled, “No problem, ‘Arch.’ But that leads me to my second point.” Again the Treecko paused, Archie motioned for him to continue, and he blurted out all at once: “I think you should join the Adventurers Lodge with me!”

That surprised him quite a bit! The Oshawott blinked, then looked towards the fire, “Oh, Spencer, I’m not sure about that.”

“But you’re strong Archie! I know it first hand,” Spencer pressed, the words tumbling out now. “I couldn’t have gotten through that Dungeon by myself, I know that for a fact. And you were turned into a Pokemon, and you lost your memory. Something or someone had to have done that to you, and even if no one at the Lodge knows, we’ll travel all over the continent - all over the world, even! It’s the best way for you to find out. Maybe you’ll run into a person you know, or a place you’ve been to, or something that helps answer all your questions.”

Archie took it all in, worked it over in his head. Now it was his turn to not know what to say. Could he really say no? The Treecko certainly raised good points. All he had was a name and a conviction, he would need more than that. If joining this Lodge could help him, even if it was only the slightest chance, he’d be a fool not to take it.

“Alright Spencer, you believed me, so I’ll believe you. I’ll join the Adventurers Lodge with you.”

The Treecko cheered. He launched to his feet, and started around the camp. “We should get to sleep, if we get up at first light we’ll reach Treasure Town by noon tomorrow, just in time for the exam!” He laid down, on the other side of the fire from Archie, and said “So I’m going to do just that! Good night Archie, don’t stay up too late!”

Archie couldn’t help but smiling at his traveling companion’s antics. Would it be too forward to consider the Treecko a friend at his point? Somehow, he doubted Spencer would disagree with the title. Still, excited or not, the Pokemon’s advice was sound. The Oshawott removed his coat, folding it up carefully to use as a pillow, and then laid down himself. He tipped the brim of his hat down to cover his eyes, and, as he drifted off, one last thought drifted into his mind.

“Maybe being a Pokemon won’t be so bad.”