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Love. Teamwork. The beginning of a saga.
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Once every seven years there was a tournament celebrating the bonds between people and Pokemon. Of course, Serena expected Ash to want to take part, but she had no idea the ways in which it would change their lives for good or ill. She was confident, however, that by the end of that week, something between herself and Ash would be different.

Official Summary for Love in the Time of Teamwork

The Ancienverse is an award-winning series of Pokémon fan fictions by Epicocity, first published in 2016. Set within the continuity of the XYZ series of the anime (and, later, beyond), the stories are written in past tense and focus mainly on the characters Ash, Serena, Clemont and Bonnie, with some other characters as well from time to time. The fics, while having romance as a major subplot, focus heavily on action with some drama and suspense as well. The series was later split into two trilogies: The Kalos Trilogy, which were the first three books set in Kalos, after which, diverging from the canon anime entirely, and The Alola Trilogy which continues the events of the Ancienverse into the Alola region, before ending on the final set of fics called The Road to Tomorrow.

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The The Kalos Trilogy, Love in the Time of Teamwork, Love in the Time of Turbulence, and Love in the Time of Tribulations are set within the XYZ continuity, starting after A Watershed Moment (XYZ 15), wherein Ash and his Kalos friends take part in a tournament known as the Kalos Team Tournament. However, dark plots are brewing behind the scenes including the enigmatic Zinnia and (in later books) the mysterious and dangerous Team Neo and DARC. In the middle of this, Ash and Serena deal with their own blossoming romance as they try to put a stop to the plans to destroy their world. This series split-off from canon with Tribulations after XYZ 43.

On March 7th, 2017, a second trilogy (known as The Alola Trilogy) started with Love in the Time of Tropics, following Ash, Serena, Clemont and Bonnie into the Alola region with a Truer to the Text Sun & Moon rewrite. It was preceded by a group of three oneshots.

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Upon the conclusion of The Alola Trilogy, a final story and associated oneshots/threeshots began posting on October 31st, 2017, with the final story, Love in the Time of Tomorrow finishing its posting by Februaru 25th, 2018. The series (as written by Epicocity) is now complete.

The completed list of stories in the Ancienverse are listed below (the flagship titles in bold):


    open/close all folders 

    The Kalos Trilogy 

    The Alola Trilogy 

    The Road to Tomorrow 

The Ancienverse contains examples of:

    Tropes A-C 

  • Abandoned Area: The radio station outside Nova Town. Also the Pokémon Sanctuary in The Road to Tomorrow.
  • Abnormal Limb Rotation Range: Rowlet, being an owl, naturally shows this off in his curiosity.
  • Absolute Xenophobe: Both Zinnia and DARC show shades of this towards the characters from the main universe.
  • Absurd Cutting Power: Greninja is able to slice through solid rock and laser beams. See Cutting Through Energy.
    • In the Alola Trilogy, he's able to cut through a Z-Move.
  • Abusive Parents: Downplayed. Michael really could not care less about his daughter and looks at her death as necessary.
    • Lusamine plays this to the extreme. Between stalking her son's every move and forcing her daughter to be her perfect little doll, she's the practical personification of this.
  • Absurdly Sharp Blade: Greninja's Cut and Aerial Ace are able to cut through solid rock in Ash-Greninja form.
  • Acceptable Breaks from Canon: The Alola Trilogy is completely different from the Sun and Moon anime, not just in tone and characters, but also in how the trials are set up. Yet given that it's an Alternate Continuity, it leads to this trope.
  • Accidental Kiss: Clemont and Korrina have one in the one shot Second, Skates, and Science.
    • Hau and Lillie have one offscreen, leading to awkwardness between them.
  • Accidental Hand Hold: Serena and Ash do this after the third day of the Kalos Team Tournament.
  • Accidental Misnaming: Like in the anime, no one, not even his partner Cassidy can get Butch's name right.
  • Accuser of the Brethren: IDEAL constantly reinforces their view that former criminals don't deserve chances at redemption.
  • Acid-Trip Dimension: The Ultra Space. Between the glimpses into tied worlds, the future and past memories, it qualifies.
  • Act Break: The ending of each book of the Alola Trilogy serves as this.
  • Action Dad: Jack Ketchum. Later on, Serena's father, Y.
  • Action Girl: Pick a girl; any girl. Odds are they're this. Bonus points to Serena, who becomes this.
    • Bonus points to Lillie, as well, who starts as even less of an action girl than Serena.
  • Action Film, Quiet Drama Scene: Tribulations is heavily driven by action, except for the major scenes where Serena speaks with Reeree. Expect this a lot in the series in general.
  • Action Prologue: The first chapter of Tropics opens up with a Chase Scene before becoming far more relaxed.
    • Done again in Tomorrow: the first chapter opens with Nova Town attacked and ARC destroyed before returning to a calmer level.
  • Actually, I Am Him: Acerola does this in Trials when she reveals she's a captain to the group.
  • Adaptational Alternate Ending: Tribulations serves as this, in a way, for the XY & Z series.
  • Adaptational Angst Upgrade: Ash, Serena and Clemont have quite a bit more angst through the Alola Trilogy, especially in comparison to the counterpart adaptation of the anime.
  • Adaptational Context Change: Lusamine's final words receive this compared to the source material as they're out of deep regret in her final moments, rather than just the toxin clearing from her head.
  • Adapted Out: Mohn. Despite many mentions, he's been Killed Off for Real in this universe.
  • Adjusting Your Glasses: Clemont does it often, usually by the bridge. He does it by the side when giving a creepy laugh.
  • Adoptive Peer Parent: Ash and Serena serve as this to Lillie.
  • Adorable Abomination: Marshadow. He acts like a little child, loving praise and even giggling a bit, only to spend most of the time trying to kill Ash and Pikachu.
  • Adorkable: Despite being a fierce battler and Runner-Up of the Kalos League, Ash still acts with giddy excitement upon arriving in Alola.
    • Hau is this as well, considering his cheerful attitude and love for malasadas.
    • Lillie qualifies as well. Especially in tandem with Hau once they become an Official Couple. By then, they can't even kiss without hurting themselves!
  • Adults Are Useless: Played with. Diantha and the adults on Team Neo, along with Team Rocket, are instrumental in stopping the Dalton's plan, but it's ultimately the kids who play the biggest hand in bringing it down.
    • However, this trope mostly being played straight elsewhere in the franchise is a driving motivation for Dalton and Team Neo. They believe that children shouldn't have to carry such a huge burden.
  • Adult Fear: In Tenacity, Delia and Grace both have to contend with the fact their children will continually throw themselves into one situation after another where they might die.
    • In Tomorrow, there is the very real fear for Bethany that Christopher won't wake up from the strike on Nova Town, leaving her to raise their daughter all alone.
  • Adventure-Friendly World: Considering all the evil organizations, this definitely applies for the main characters.
    • Ironically, a point of concern for Dalton, who believes it shouldn't be this way.
  • Aesop Collateral Damage: Gladion needs to learn to work with others. Him not working with others causes Lillie to be taken by Lusamine to further her disastrous plans.
  • Affably Evil: Dalton is rather kind to Ash and Seamus when he isn't trying to kill them.
  • Affectionate Gesture to the Head: Pikipek likes to tap people on the forehead.
  • A Friend in Need: The gang drops everything to save Lillie...no matter the consequences that result.
  • After-Action Patch-Up: The protagonists spend their time recovering after both the Ancien Debacle and the Nova Incident.
    • More straight after the Poni Raid in Tenacity where the characters spend a chapter getting patched-up and figure out the next plan.
  • After Action, Villain Analysis: The heroes all spend time discussing DARC and its leader Michael after a tremendous battle that left them defeated.
    • Repeated again in Tomorrow when everyone meets at the League Hub to decide the course of the final battle.
  • Ageless Birthday Episode: Subverted. While Ash is always 10 in canon, he explicitly ages here, though no definite age is given outside of vague hints that he's turned 16.
  • A Glitch in the Matrix: Ash is able to sense something is wrong in the perfect world when he sees Zinnia and then wins the Kalos League.
  • A Good Way to Die: Reeree seems to go out like this, dying as "Serena" rather than "Reeree".
    • Nanu definitely goes out this way, choosing his method of death and taking Tolbert and Louise with him.
  • Air-Vent Passageway: Pikachu and Chespin open up the doors to the radio station by getting in through one of these.
  • A Lesson in Defeat: Team Ketchum ultimately delivers this to Team Brutal on the fourth and fifth days.
    • Gary delivers it again to Travis, after he sides with the Draconids. And Ash again in Turbulence.
    • Hala gives this to Ash early after his arrival on Melemele. Though not in the same way as one would expect.
  • Alien Invasion: What the attack of the Ultra Beasts amounts to.
  • All Abusers Are Male: Averted. While Carl qualifies, both Lusamine and Deirdre show their less-than-pleasant sides when it comes to their children.
  • All According to Plan: Tenacity: The heroes make it to Lusamine, only to learn she wanted all of them to be there to take control of Solgaleo and Lunala.
  • All Death Is Final: Except for one notable exception in the past, no character that dies comes back to life.
  • All for Nothing: Tribulations: The defense of AZ ends with DARC getting control of the key, Reeree dying and most of the heroes' spirits crushed.
    • Trials: The rescue mission for Lillie becomes pointless when Lusamine and Guzma escape into the Ultra Space and Lillie is forced to stand up, herself.
  • All Is Well That Ends Well: Very much in effect.
    "And Ash and Serena Ketchum embarked on a new beginning, the next chapter in their lives."
  • Alliterative Title: Most of the oneshots follow this naming scheme as seen above. The main stories all are a variation on "Love in the Time of T..."
  • All Myths Are True: Turns out to be the case in both Ancien City and Nova Town.
  • All There in the Manual: Bruce, Trent and Portia's backstory (though jokingly) is given in a Twitter post by the author here. Though, many of these details later became confirmed or outright implied in the stories themselves.
  • All Up to You: One by one, the rest of Team Ketchum leaves the battle against Seamus up to Ash.
    • Seamus turns over the battle against Dalton solely to Ash after giving him an opening.
    • Diantha does this in for Ash when she chooses to save Serena and Clemont over herself, dying and leaving the battle to Ash.
  • All Your Base Are Belong to Us: Tomorrow kicks off with ARC's base exploding and killing most of its members.
  • All Your Powers Combined: Subverted. Ash defeats Deirdre with everyone helping him through Ho-oh's feather to land a final blow.
  • Almost Out of Oxygen: Serena when she tries to rescue Ash from drowning.
  • Aloha, Hawaii!: The main cast's arrival in the Alola region, unsurprisingly.
  • Alphabetical Theme Naming: The titles of each major installment are always "Love in the Time of (something starting with T)".
  • Alpha Strike: Team Neo does this when it attacks the League Summit.
  • Alternate Continuity: The entire series becomes one starting from XYZ 15, with the Ancien Debacle being the impetus behind it all.
    • Downplayed in general, though. Many canon events (at least through XYZ) are mentioned to have occurred more-or-less the same during the time skips between the stories. The only real difference is that Ash and Serena are now a couple. However, Tribulations functions as a full-on alternate ending the the Kalos saga, diverging after the end of the Team Flare crisis.
    • The Alola Trilogy functions as this to the Sun & Moon anime, with a plot much more in line with the games and the XY companions still accompanying Ash.
  • Alternate Self: Reeree, Clime, Mimi and Gary are this for Serena, Clemont, Miette and Gary. There was also an Ash, though he died.
    • Later, Serena's actual father, Y, comes into the picture, as a contrast to the then-dead Michael.
  • Alternate Universe: Zinnia and the other Draconids are from one.
    • Turns out several members of DARC hail from a separate one, with the added twist that they are doppelgangers of several major cast members, namely Gary, Serena, Clemont, Paul, and Miette.
    • The Ultra Space is a major influence in the Alola Trilogy, and it's even speculated that destroyed alternate worlds get absorbed into it.
  • Always Save the Girl: Horribly averted in Tribulations when Ash chooses to help his father rather than Serena, leading to Reeree's death.
  • Always Someone Better: The lesson that Team Brutal is forced to learn. Most of them understand it, renaming themselves Team Nova, but it leads Travis to Take A Level In Jerkass.
  • Amazingly Embarrassing Parents: Implied to the be the reason Ash and Serena didn't tell their monthers that they're dating right away.
  • Ambition Is Evil: Giovanni personifies this, to both the heroes and IDEAL.
  • A Million Is a Statistic: Plenty of trainers are lost in the battle at Geosenge, though only the death of Ash's father truly matters to the main characters.
  • Subverted in Tomorrow when a funeral is held for all the fallen, though focus is kept on the major characters.
  • Amulet of Concentrated Awesome: The Z-Ring.
  • Anchored Ship: Astrid/Rocky. Rockey dies, leaving it so.
  • Ancient Artifact: The meteorites and the Four Gates.
  • Ancient Tradition: The Island Trials for Alola.
  • And I Must Scream: Nebby, after Lusamine opens the Ultra Space with his power.
  • And Now for Someone Completely Different: Despite following Ash and the gang for most of the Alola Trilogy, Chapter 8 of Trials suddenly cuts away to Gary and Steven on Poni Island.
  • And the Adventure Continues: After everything is peaceful following he battle at Geosenge, Ash already takes Serena, Clemont and Bonnie's hands for their next adventure.
    Ash: Let's go everyone! Towards our next adventure.
    • The end of Tomorrow: the final tipping point is past but Serena's plan to expand what performing means, the reinstated ties to other dimensions and the announcement of Serena's pregnancy invokes this trope. The final line more or less hammers it in.
  • And the Rest: During the award ceremony at the end of Tribulations, Diantha thanks "certain individuals" who couldn't attend. Shortly afterwards, a conspicious Inkay takes some medals, which Diantha visibly ignores.
  • And This Is for...: Ash's final blow against Deirdre is accompanied by him screaming the name of almost every important character in the series, saying they're doing it together.
  • Anger Born of Worry: Serena has this towards Ash in Turbulence due to him throwing himself into situations and not letting her help.
  • Anguished Declaration of Love: Mairin gives one to Alain when he's suffering from a Heroic BOSD after Cedric's Swampert manhandles his Charizard.
  • Animal Stampede: Pokemon stampede through Heahea when the portal to the Ultra Space appears.
    • Happens offscreen prior to The Road to Tomorrow, leaving many dead.
  • Animate Inanimate Object: The Rotomdex.
  • The Announcer: Harrison "Harry" Kalas.
  • An Offer You Can't Refuse: Gladion is given this by Lusamine, forcing him to hand over his sister so he can finally break free, though, again, he's not given much of a choice.
  • Anti-Air: The Aether Foundation has these kinds of cannons attached to their island.
  • Anti-Hero Team: IDEAL: doing bad things for the good of the League.
  • Anti-Villain: Dalton. Despite his actions being morally wrong, his reasoning for doing so are ultimately for the greater good.
  • Anxiety Dreams: Ash has one regarding losing Serena in Turbulence.
    • He has another major one at the end of Tropics.
  • Apocalypse How: IDEAL's victory disintegrates the entire world except for Ancien Stadium, leaving it in a void.
  • Apocalyptic Gag Order: The Pokemon League enacts this regarding the Day of Stars to prevent public panic. They do it again in Tomorrow to make sure the situation doesn't worsen.
  • Apologizes a Lot: Lillie has the tendency to do this.
  • A Pupil of Mine, Until He Turned to Evil: Guzma is this to Hala, though Hala admits he has some part to blame in it.
  • Arbitrary Headcount Limit: Averted. At one point, Ash has almost all of his prized Pokémon on the scene, well above the mandated six.
  • Arboreal Abode: The Battle Tree
  • Arc Break: The oneshots serve as this for the major installments.
  • Arc Number: Seven. A tournament every seven years. DARC's "The Seven". There are even seven books!
  • Arc Villain: Both Zinnia and Dalton serve as this for Teamwork and Turbulence, respectively.
    • Lusamine, as per the games, is this for the entire Alola Trilogy.
  • Arc Welding: The events of the anime and everything in the previous two stories are all tied together by Michael who is revealed to have manipulated all of the events to get to this moment, though he hoped it wouldn't come to this.
    • The giant orange Water Shuriken that Greninja (ineffectually) used against Alain's Charizard is revealed to be a Z-Move, lacking power due to lacking a Z-Crystal.
    • Tomorrow does a lot with this with the reveal that the meteonite Team Rocket stole is called the Alpha and the meteorites in Ancien City are the Omega. Also, past events of the series are called into effect.
  • Arc Words: Hope, Despair, Steps, Change, Identity, Love and Future.
  • Arch-Enemy: Michael. The guy is responsible for almost every event of the series.
    • Guzma and his Goliosopd, to a lesser extent, serves as this for Ash and Greninja throughout Alola.
    • Also to a lesser extent, Plumeria is this to Clemont throughout Alola.
  • Archnemesis Dad: Played with. Michael...sorta.
  • Area of Effect: Anytime Rayquaza wants to nuke something with Hyper Beam, a lot of stuff gets blown up. Usually mitigated via the use of Protect, Reflect, Light Screen, etc.
  • Aristocrats Are Jerks: Keoni seems to be wealthy and is generally unpleasant to everyone.
  • Armor-Piercing Slap: Serena delivers one to Seamus after the latter attempts to commit suicide.
    • A second one is given from Serena to Keoni after he calls Ash a loser. It hurts.
  • Artifact Alias: All of the members of DARC continue to go by their code names even after their identities are revealed. Averted with ARC.
    • It's obvious that Y's true name is Michael, but no one calls him that, for obvious reasons.
  • Artifact Collection Agency: Artifact Recovery Corps.
  • Artifact of Doom: The meteorites in Teamwork and the Four Gates in Turbulence
  • Arrogant Kung-Fu Guy: Most of Team Brutal, notably Seamus, Rocky, and Travis. The former two lose it after a Heel–Face Turn, but Travis, if anything, turns it Up to Eleven.
  • Artificial Gravity: Induced by Medicham to force opponents to the ground.
  • Ascended Extra: Astrid plays a large role in the trilogy despite her limited screentime in the series proper.
    • Kahili from the games becomes this, mentoring Ash during a Time Skip.
    • Matori, Giovanni's assistant, is a main antagonist in Tomorrow where it's revealed she's the assassin on the group IDEAL.
  • A Shared Suffering: Ash seems to connect with Hau based on their mutual loss of parents.
    • Seems to be the reason all of Team Neo was able to come together.
  • As Long as There is One Man: Variation. Ash tells Aria that as long as one of them is still breathing, they'll keep fighting.
  • Asshole Victim: After all the terrible crap Travis has pulled throughout the Ancienverse, it's a bit hard to feel sorry for him when he gets impaled by Carl's Kabutops. He survives, though. He's killed for good later, though this time with Redemption Equals Death.
  • A Storm Is Coming: What the League suspects is about to happen in Alola at the start of Tropics.
  • A Taste of Defeat: Delivered to Team Brutal during the Tag Battle, and then on the final day.
  • A Tragedy of Impulsiveness: Gladion's desperation to free himself from his mother leads directly to the major loss for the heroes at the end of Trials.
  • Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever: Rayquaza whenever it shows up.
  • Attack of the Town Festival: Zinnia launches her attack right at the end of the Kalos Team Tournament, held during a festival in Ancien City.
  • The Atoner: Seamus becomes this in Turbulence
    • Keoni becomes this in Fourths, Films, and Forgiveness by trying to add more romance scenes between Ash and Serena in Maka's movie to make up for the trouble he caused them in the Alola Trilogy.
  • Audio Adaptation: The first two chapters can be heard here.
  • Authority Equals Asskicking: Diantha, as the head of the Kalos League, definitely destroys things in battle. Same with Michael.
    • Hala displays this well when he defeats Ash-Greninja relatively easily.
  • Awful Truth: Dalton hides the fact that Merle died three years ago from Seamus to avoid causing him pain.
  • Awkward Father-Son Bonding Activity: Ash and Jack spend time bonding while fighting against DARC.
  • Aw, Look! They Really Do Love Each Other: Bonnie and Rotom constantly bicker...except for when they want to troll Keoni and show they care about each other. They also easily work together during the attack on the Aether Foundation. Rotom later admits that Bonnie is his best friend.
    • Hits hard when Bonnie gets enraged that Lusamine killed Rotom.
  • A World Half Full: The way the protagonists like to look at things when compared to the villains. Displayed most prominently at the end of Tribulations when Ash does what no other antagonist did by moving beyond his grief and pain.
  • Ax-Crazy: Travis. One hundred percent Travis.
  • Babies Ever After: Implied to be the case for Christopher and Bethany in Nova, and outright confirmed in Tomorrow, specifically a baby girl named Thea.
    • Applies to Ash and Serena once she tells him that she's pregnant with their first child in the final chapter of the Ancienverse.
  • Back for the Dead: Team Rocket as a whole is wiped out halfway through Tomorrow, including previously notable agents Domino, Pierce, Zager, Butch and Cassidy, and Giovanni. The only known survivors are Jessie, James, and Meowth (who defected), and Matori (who was never loyal to begin with).
  • Back for the Finale: Almost every character that was in Teamwork and Turbulence comes back once more in Tribulations for The Final Battle.
    • Most of them also return in Tenacity, along with other major anime characters that hadn't yet appeared in the Ancienverse.
    • Tomorrow essentially features every character via at least a mention for the final battle. Even Zinnia.
  • Backstory: Seamus' and Travis' gets filled in during Turbulence.
    • Guzma gets one in full midway into Tenacity.
  • Badass Adorable: Bonnie goes well on her way to become this, definitely succeeding by Tomorrow. Hau is definitely this.
  • Badass Army: All of the trainers gathered to fight on the Final Day.
  • Badass Crew: Ash's Pokemon team.
    • Whenever the group gets together to take down the enemy, they really show it off.
  • Badass in Distress: Ash is held captive for a chunk of Turbulence, unable to do anything.
  • Badass Teacher: Kahili...as unorthodox as her teaching methods are.
  • Bad Date: Ash and Serena have one in Firsts, Fans and Failures, but ultimately ends well with Serena happy with Ash's efforts and them spending time together.
    • It's repeated alongside Clemont and Korrina in Seconds, Skates and Science, which also ends well for both Ash & Serena, and Clemont & Korrina.
  • Baddie Flattery: Both Zinnia and Dalton praise Ash's skill as a trainer throughout their clashes.
    • Deirdre views Ash as a Worthy Opponent that makes her feel alive when clashing with him.
  • Bad People Abuse Animals: Seamus and Travis both do this in Teamwork, but it's reduced to just Travis by Turbulence.
  • Barrier-Busting Blow: Pancham smashes through his own pile of stones that are defending Mimi's Meowstic in order to defeat him.
  • Bash Brothers: Jael and Kael of the Draconids are literally this.
  • Battle Couple: Ash and Serena. Bethany and Christopher. Later, Clemont and Korrina.
    • Theta and Chi provide a villainous example.
    • Lillie and Hau become this much later.
  • Battlecry: Ash retains his "I choose you!".
    • Rocky uses "Let's wreck!"
  • Battle in the Rain: The battle for the final fragment from AZ takes place in the rain on the beach.
    • Ash and Gladion have a major one outside Po Town, fittingly representing their current state with one another.
  • Battle-Interrupting Shout: Serena screams "STOP IT!" to put an end to Ash and Gladion's fist fight.
  • Beak Attack: Both Rowlet and Pikipek attack in this way.
  • Beauty, Brains and Brawn: Serena, Clemont and Ash respectively within their major roles throughout the series.
  • Beauty = Goodness: Certainly the case for both Serena and Aria, who are seen as some of the most beautiful individuals in-universe, with the lovely personalities to match.
  • Because Destiny Says So: Michael truly believes his world will be destroyed because of this unless he does something by destroying the main world.
  • Because You Were Nice to Me: Travis' reasoning for pushing Seamus out of the way of Yveltal's Death Ray.
  • Befriending the Enemy: Serena befriends Reeree after connecting with her.
  • Before I Change My Mind: Plumeria demands that Lillie comes with her, saying she won't harm anyone...but if she doesn't do it right away, she may not be so forgiving towards her friends.
  • Behemoth Battle: Mega Latios vs. Mega Latias. More appropriately, Xerneas vs. Yveltal in the climax of Tribulations.
  • Being Watched: The main characters consistently get this feeling on Akala Island, which turns out to be Squishy.
  • Beleaguered Assistant: Chrissy is this for Mayor Aston of Ancien City until she gets a promotion.
  • Beneath Suspicion: None of the heroes or Champions seem to consider Michael to have any hand in Alola's events, given that he's dead.
  • Berserk Button: Do NOT harm Pokemon needlessly in front of Ash. Or Serena. Don't hurt Serena either.
    • Hurting Bonnie is a bad idea for anyone wanting to stay on Clemont's good side.
    • Belittling Ash turns out to make Serena angry.
  • Berserker Tears: Serena cries these after Reeree sacrifices herself to save her.
  • Beta Couple: Clemont and Korrina are this to Ash and Serena.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: The main characters are incredibly kind and forgiving. Push them the wrong way and...well...three toppled villainous organizations have something to say about it.
  • Big Bad: Michael is this for not only the fic, but the entire anime, as well. Even in death, his influence make him a Greater-Scope Villain.
  • Big Bad Duumvirate: Lusamine and Guzma serve as this for the Alola Trilogy.
  • Big-Bad Ensemble: Giovanni and the Four Pillars have opposing plans for the future in Tomorrow, compacted by Michael continuing his role as Greater-Scope Villain.
  • Big Bad Slippage: Dalton was a kind, if stern, teacher. Then he lost his daughter and everything he saw which followed turned him into the leader of Team Neo.
    • This is especially so for Guzma, who was once like Ash (read: street smart, Book Dumb), until all the abuse and neglect from those around him made him rather prone to become an evil puppet for Lusamine.
  • Big Badass Battle Sequence: "The Final Day" consists of an army of trainers against an army of Pokemon and DARC, including 6 titanic trainer battles, a battle against the Big Bad, and including several Olympus Mons.
  • Big Brother Instinct: Clemont will always jump to save Bonnie, no matter what. So will Ash and Serena.
  • Big Damn Heroes: Ash pulls this when he saves Serena by deflecting Zinnia's attack.
    • Clemont's group to Ash on top of Team Neo's airship.
    • Team Rocket tends to pull this at least once a story, if not more. Indeed, they pull it thrice in Tomorrow.
  • The Big Damn Kiss: Ash and Serena share one following their confessions.
    • Another example is Clemont & Korrina in Tenacity when she arrives in Alola to help in the final battle and he's beyond ecstatic to see her.
  • Big Eater: Cedric always has a bag of chips in his arm.
  • Big, Screwed-Up Family: Lusamine is psychotic and trying to destroy the world, her son is working for a band of thugs and is willing to sell people out to save himself (at first), while her daughter is still suffering from the years of abuse at her hands. It makes Reeree's family look normal.
    • Travis's entire family qualifies. First we have Travis who's Ax-Crazy, than we have his father Carl, who's not much different and even tries to kill Travis with no remorse, and finally we have his mother Deirdre who tries to reset the world and committed genocide at least twice in order to do so.
  • Bilingual Bonus: Many of the character and town names in The Alola Trilogy have a special meaning that applies to the characters or locations in Hawaiian.
  • Birthday Episode: The one-shot Striving for a Smile and the opening of Tropics revolve around Ash's birthday. Humorously, since Ash never celebrated it previously, he doesn't know how old he is, and the story doesn't give any concrete answer.
  • Bitch Slap: Serena gives Keoni a pretty fierce one after he insults Ash one too many times.
  • Bizarre Taste in Food: Kiawe tries to hint that Mallow has this, though she denies it.
  • Black Cloak: Reeree wears one.
  • Blofeld Ploy: Nihilego emerges from a portal, seemingly about to kill the heroes...until Lusamine orders it to kill Faba, instead.
  • Blood from the Mouth: Reeree coughs blood after being impaled.
  • Bloodier and Gorier: Tribulations has much more blood and violence than previous entries.
  • Blood Knight: Nanu. 100% Nanu.
    • Ash and Alain qualify with their love of battling strong opponents.
  • Bloodless Carnage: Usually what happens throughout fights. Averted when Travis stabs Seamus, and later Ash.
    • Averted when Carl runs his son through with Kabutops and Reeree is impaled with two Metal Claws.
  • Blood-Splattered Innocents: Serena, when she holds a dying Reeree in her arms.
  • Blue Is Heroic: Ash is dressed in blue colors both in Kalos and Alola.
  • Bluff the Imposter: How Serena tricks "Wulfric" into revealing his true identity.
  • Bonding Over Missing Parents: Ash and Hau come to bond over the mutual death of parents, including Ash's father. Ash and Gladion do the same.
  • Bookcase Passage: Lusamine has one in her office to the labs in her mansion.
  • Book-Ends: Trials begins and ends with Lusamine saying almost the same exact lines.
    • To a greater extent: the series begins and ends in Ancien City.
  • Borrowed Catchphrase: Serena uses Ash's "I choose you" on the final day of the Peace Tournament.
  • Break the Badass: Alain essentially shuts down after Cedric effortlessly beats Charizard with his Swampert.
    • Ash goes through this in the final trial to the point of almost giving up after reliving his past failures.
  • Brick Joke: One to the main series, when Team Rocket makes their Tera Tera Meowth after having made a Mega Mega, and a Giga Giga in the past.
  • Brilliant, but Lazy: Ash's Rowlet is a competent fighter, but is content to sleep most of the time. Eventually grows out of it by the time he evolves into Decidueye.
  • Broken Pedestal: The first time Seamus saw a Pokemon battle on TV, it was Ash's victory over Drake in the Orange Islands, leading Seamus to aspire to be as strong as him. However, Ash's non-success in subsequent Leagues slowly led Seamus to believe that that victory was just a fluke and that Ash is a complete joke. The events of the Team Tournament manage to turn this into a Rebuilt Pedestal.
    • Also has this for Dalton after seeing his actions as leader of Team Neo.
  • Brooding Boy, Gentle Girl: Alain and Mairin.
  • Bungling Inventor: Clemont retains this, though in a clutch he always delivers.
    • Notably, he creates a rather mundane invention in Tropics (a Berry-harvesting machine), and everyone is shocked when it doesn't explode by itself. Team Skull destroys it anyway, though.
  • The Bus Came Back: Numerous past friends of Ash return in the Team Tournament, including Brock, Gary, May, Dawn, and Conway.
    • Squishy and Z-2 also make a return appearance in Alola.
    • Harry Kalas returns in Tenacity to commentate on the Hope Leilani and Alola League.
    • Several prominent Team Rocket agents reappear in Tomorrow, including Butch and Cassidy, Domino, Pierce, and Dr. Zager.
    • In the same story, the Team Rocket trio retrieves their Sinnoh Pokemon, left at HQ at the end of DP. Even their Unova Pokemon appear.
  • But for Me, It Was Tuesday: The battle with Team Magma and Aqua is little more than a memory and footnote in Ash's life, but to Dalton it was everything since his daughter died because of the villainous teams' actions.
  • But Now I Must Go: Nebby and Lunala have to stay in the Ultra Space after Lusamine and Necrozma are defeated, in order to rebuild. It's made clear that the two dimensions won't be able to interact for a long time, if ever.
  • Cain and Abel: Seamus and Travis have shades of this, though they aren't related.
  • Call-Back: Starlit refers back to Lilia meeting Clemont.
  • Call-Forward: Teamwork references the fact that Ash and Serena's next stop is Fleurrh City, and that the Master Class is upcoming.
    • Turbulence references numerous things in its final chapter:
      • Malva's appearance at the League.
      • Alain waiting at the Shalour Gym to battle Korrina.
      • Sawyer waiting in Lumiose and that he was waiting for Ash.
      • The Kalos Crisis incoming.
      • Ash vs. Astrid at the League.
  • Calling the Old Man Out: Lillie finally reams her mother a new one for all of her horrible actions. Twice.
  • Calling Your Attacks: It's a Pokemon story. This trope is a given.
  • Call to Adventure: Diantha informing Ash of the Alola region and its challenges sets him off on his journey there.
  • Campfire Character Exploration: Ash learns of Seamus' past this way in Turbulence
  • Cannon Fodder: The Pokemon army on the Final Day. They easily get blown away by the main cast and are mostly there to buy time.
  • Can't Catch Up: How Clemont feels through most of The Alola Trilogy in regards to Ash and Serena. He gets over it.
  • Captured Super-Entity: Nebby is taken captive by the Aether Foundation and Lusamine, leading the group to launch an assault to rescue it.
  • Carved Mark: The group sees one on the back of an injured Bewear, and suspect that Team Skull is responsible. It's actually from the Aether Foundation.
  • The Cavalry: Numerous Gym Leaders and other trainers show up to battle DARC for the final key piece after it's already started.
  • Celeb Crush: Multiple people develop one on Ash and Serena after the events at Ancien and Nova.
  • Celestial Deadline: The Day of Stars, which is the point where the Ultra Space will be closest to the normal dimension, and the date when Lusamine unleashes the Ultra Beasts upon the world.
  • The Centerpiece Spectacular: The final day of the Kalos Team Tournament.
    • The final battle with Team Rocket on Mount Lanakila.
  • Centipede's Dilemma: Ash always kept going towards his dream of being Pokemon Master. When Hala finally asks him what that is, Ash starts breaking down, slowly realizing he can't achieve his dream because he has no idea what it is.
  • Central Theme: Find hope, and take a step beyond despair.
  • Cerebus Callback: The series takes, while not innocent they are certainly not as serious, moments from the Orange Islands, Hoenn, Sinnoh and Unova and puts them in a darker light by revealing the people and Pokemon that died during specific events.
    • As well, the bigger moments involving Legendaries are revealed to have been causing the fabric of reality to slowly tear apart.
    • And DARC turns out to have been aiding other villainous teams, attempting to bring about The End of the World as We Know It.
  • Cerebus Syndrome: There's a relatively gradual escalation in the story. As it starts with a lighthearted tournament before the Draconids attack, though other than the city being damaged, nothing happens. Turbulence expands the scope of the plot, with a greater emphasis on past events, while Tribulations makes it far Darker and Edgier to the point that there are a handful of character deaths.
    • Zig-zagged with Alola, which largely seems like a much Lighter and Softer romp, except for when Guzma and Lusamine enter the picture, culminating in a more personal, high-stakes battle in Tenacity.
    • Fully enforced with Tomorrow as the darkest entry of the series featuring numerous character deaths, mass destruction and a lot of violence.
  • Challenging the Chief: Ash challenges the leader of a group of Jangmo-o to get them to move. It joins his team.
  • Character Death: Happens to several people over the course of ''Tomorrow'', including Lionel, Domino, Rocky, Pierce, and Zager.
  • Character Development: Many of the characters receive this.
    • Serena, in particular, goes from her still slightly timid character to someone able to match battle beats with top trainers, while coming out of her shell to outright command groups of trainers at a time. Most notable during the climax of Turbulence when she defies Kalos Champion Diantha to battle against Team Neo and lead the entire group.
    • Seamus of Team Brutal undergoes this in spades. He starts off as a cold and callous individual befitting his team's name. By the end of Teamwork, he's beginning to rethink his actions and chooses to abandon his want to become famous and returns home. By the end of Turbulence he opens up his own school to move forward and be a kinder person.
    • This happens in spades through the Alola Trilogy. Ash acknowledges who he is and what a Pokemon Master is; Serena comes to realize she can't take everything on by herself; Clemont accepts that he's behind his friends and that he doesn't need to surpass them; Bonnie becomes a competent Pokemn trainer; Hau learns how to take things seriously; Gladion starts working with others; Lillie breaks out of her shell; and Team Rocket starts realizing they have the power to do great things after all.
  • Charles Atlas Superpower: Merle seems to be the physically strongest human ever, physically fighting Greninja and holding her own. Completely subverted when it turns out she's actually a Zoroark.
  • Chekhov's Exhibit: Yveltal's cocoon is mentioned as being in the Allearth Forest. It later gets taken from there for DARC's plan.
  • Child Prodigy: Bonnie is well on her way to being an amazing trainer...when she actually reaches the proper age, which she does by Tomorrow.
  • Chronic Hero Syndrome: Ash suffers from this, wanting to help just about anyone with any problem.
  • Circle of Standing Stones: The Four Gates in Nova Town look like this, with one in each of the four cardinal directions.
  • Citadel City: The Kalos League Headquarters appears to function like this.
  • Cliffhanger: Reeree's identity is revealed at the end of Chapter 9 of Tribulations...only to not be touched upon until Chapter 11.
    • Ash's Alola League match with Gladion ends with the following narration:
    Silvally's foot slipped, dropping the creature to its knees as it heaved. Pikachu began to fall.
  • Clipboard of Authority: Diantha carries a tablet around, especially when she becomes the de facto president of the League.
  • Clothing Damage: Clemont's jumpsuit gets utterly destroyed early on in Tropics, leading to a change of clothes.
  • Clueless Chick Magnet: Ash turns out to have been this regarding his past female companions.
    • Hau seems to be this, too, getting numbers from girls at malasada shops but not knowing what they mean.
  • Code Name: Both ARC and DARC use these for anonymity.
    • For instance, Jack Ketchum's codename is Red.
  • Cold-Blooded Torture: Carl uses Latios to Mind Rape Bonnie, making her shed Tears of Fear to gain information from Goodshow.
  • Collapsing Lair: The Team Neo ship breaks into numerous pieces as Ash and his friends flee from it.
    • Team Rocket's base upon being destroyed by IDEAL.
  • Combat Breakdown: The final fight against Mega Latios and Michael starts off throwing powerful attacks, but becomes little more than a glorified fist fight by the end.
  • Combat Parkour: Due to her long career as a performer, Serena shows she's more than capable of pulling this off in Tomorrow when helping Ash fight Alastair.
  • Comically Missing the Point: Brock doesn't seem to get that the issue is that the boy's don't like their outfits; not that they don't like the girls'.
  • The Comically Serious: Believe it or not Paul, of all people, is this with his outburst at Ash and Serena's wedding, stating if anyone had to object to them getting married, than they wouldn't have shown up. He's also shown to actually be having fun at their ceremony.
  • Composite Character: The Rotomdex in the Alola Trilogy is inhabited by the Rotom that Professor Oak caught in the Best Wishes series. In the canon anime, it's a different Rotom entirely.
  • Condescending Compassion: Keoni says that Serena could become the Ali'i ka Leilani, but not right now, only because she can't help that Ash is with her and holding her back.
  • Conflicting Loyalty: Reeree becomes torn between saving the other world and her friends in DARC. Unfortunately, besides Mimi, none of them feel the same way.
  • Conservation of Ninjutsu: The Pokemon army is much larger than the Trainer army, but the latter is more successful.
  • Consulting a Convicted Criminal: Diantha meets with Travis in prison to obtain information on DARC's plan.
  • Continuity Cavalade: Numerous past characters, from the anime and the fic, show up in the third book of each trilogy.
  • Continuity Creep: The stories seem to be standalone, until Turbulence connects them suddenly to each other by Dalton's motivation for acting being Ancien, while also connecting it to the full anime at large.
  • Continuity Lockout: Attempted to be averted in The Alola Trilogy despite the massive amount of connected characters and events. The story is a Truer to the Text Alternate Continuity of the Sun & Moon anime with the XY main cast, but most other characters from the previous trilogy and series are dropped.
  • Continuity Nod: The Four Gates are noted to be made of the same substance as the meteorites in Ancien City.
    • Dalton took his actions because of the Ancien Debacle.
    • The League holds a summit, partly due to all the evil plots Ash has been involved in. Alder hardly knows Ash, because he interacted with him the least.
    • The BW meteonite becomes a major plot in Tomorrow, having been kept by Team Rocket since their Unova plans failed in the unaired episodes.
  • Coupled Couples: Ash and Serena spend quite some time with Clemont and Korrina, especially in the one-shot Seconds, Skates, and Science.
  • Crapsaccharine World: IDEAL puts Ash in one of these close to the end of Tomorrow where he never fought Zinnia after the Kalos Team Tournament, defeated Alain in the Kalos League, and got together with Serena much sooner than what he actually did...although he immediately figures out that something wasn't right with the world he was in.
  • CPR: Clean, Pretty, Reliable: Serena performs this on Ash at the end of Turbulence.
  • Crazy-Prepared: Clemont likes to pretend that he's this with his inventions.
  • Create Your Own Hero: By causing all of the events in the world in an attempt to destroy it, they made Ash strong enough to the point that he's powerful enough to stop DARC in its tracks.
  • Crippling Overspecialization: Not quite crippling, but Clemont points out to Serena that relying on Braixen's Fire-type moves limits the appeals in the Leilani Ceremonies. She takes the advice and begins using the Normal-type move Hidden Power more often, and later gets Braixen to learn Psyshock.
  • Crowd Chant: The crowd at the Kalos Team Tournament calls for an off-field fight between Team Ketchum and Team Brutal on the third day.
  • Crowd Panic: The crowd at the Kalos Team Tournament is sent into this when the Draconids attack.
  • Crush Blush: Serena, before she and Ash get together. Even after, occasionally.
    • Lillie also falls victim to this regarding Hau. Naturally, he doesn't get it.
  • Cry into Chest: Serena does this to Ash after losing on the first day of the Kalos Team Tournament.
  • Cue the Sun: The sun rises after the Final Day and Jack Ketchum's death.
    • Also happens after the Final Battle in the Alola Trilogy.
    • And again at the end of Tomorrow. Epicocity loves this trope, apparently.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: Rocky's Rhyperior destroys Portia's Vaporeon on the first day of the tournament.
    • Ash suffers one in his first battle with Zinnia.
    • Reeree's Pangoro is on the receiving end from Lionel's Mega Banette.
    • Alain's Mega Charizard, of all 'mons, is taken down pretty easily by Cedric's Mega Swampert.
  • Curb Stomp Cushion:
    • DARC delivers one to the protagonists in their first major appearance, with Alain's Charizard able to get in a few hits, but ultimately being unable to do anything. Especially when Latios shows up.
    • Hau is on the receiving end of one from Ash in their first battle, losing 3-1. He's pretty good-natured about it, though.
  • Curse Cut Short: Rocky has one in regards to Travis.
  • Cute Owl: Rowlet, naturally.
  • Cutting the Knot: The protagonists do this by outright having the meteorites destroyed to stop Zinnia's plan instead of trying to defeat the hordes of attacking Dragon-types.
  • Cutting Through Energy: Greninja manages to do it when he uses Cut to slice through Mega Latios' Hyper Beam.
  • Cynicism Catalyst: Seeing the League fail to make any meaningful strides to stop villainous organizations after the death of his daughter leads Dalton to believe it needs to be destroyed as it is now.

    Tropes D-H 
  • Daddy Had a Good Reason for Abandoning You: Jack Ketchum left home permanently in order to commit full time to battling DARC.
  • Damsel in Distress: Bonnie gets kidnapped by DARC in Tribulations.
    • Lillie in Trials. She breaks out of it just in time.
  • Dance Battler: Tierno, as in the series.
    • Maka and her Oricorio show shades of this.
  • Dances and Balls: The Victory Ball.
  • Dance of Romance: Ash and Serena share a dance at the Victory Ball.
    • The obvious at Ash and Serena's wedding.
  • Dare to Be Badass: Ash calls everyone at the Kalos Power Plant to summon all the courage they have to fight for their world in the final battle.
  • Dark Action Girl: Zinnia serves as this in Teamwork. Merle is this in Turbulence, at least, until it's revealed she's a Zoroark, and Reeree and Mimi fill the role in Tribulations.
  • Darker and Edgier: Than the anime starting from the end of Teamwork. Continues to get darker as the series goes on.
    • Seems to have resorted to Lighter and Softer as of The Alola Trilogy, only to veer straight back here by Tomorrow.
  • Date Peepers: Every one of their friends watch as Ash and Serena confess to each other. Bonnie even follows them on a date.
  • Dawn of an Era: The defeat of DARC ushers in a new, brighter era for the world at large. Doubles down at the end of the series.
  • The Day of Reckoning: What "The Final Day" is for both worlds.
  • Dead All Along: Merle
  • Dead Alternate Counterpart: The other Ash Ketchum is revealed to have died in a rockslide long before Tribulations.
  • Dead Person Impersonation: Zoroark masquerades as Merle for most of Turbulence
  • Death by Adaptation: Lusamine has Faba stabbed by Nihilego then snapped in half after he succeeds in opening the portal to Ultra Space for her.
    • Lusamine herself is given a Mercy Kill after her Fusion Dance is undone, as it's clear that she was already about to die.
  • Death Is a Sad Thing: Played straight when the main characters, and especially, Seamus, grieve over Dalton's death.
  • Death of a Child: Dalton's entire driving motive after losing his daughter.
  • Declaration of Protection: Serena makes one to Reeree. She fails.
  • Deconstruction Fic: Turbulence plays as one, showing how all these earth-splitting events weren't so simply resolved, and just what sending children to journey on their own with little protection could lead to for those who aren't the main characters.
  • Deep Cover Agent: Michael, the Vice President of the League, is revealed to be the leader of DARC.
  • Deflector Shield: The Ancien Warriors pool all of their Pokemon's protective moves together to defend themselves from Rayquaza's Hyper Beam.
  • Designated Girl Fight: Serena, Astrid and Bethany all face Theta (Tiffany).
    • Serena, Dawn and Astrid fight Reeree in Tribulations. Later, Serena and Miette fight Mimi.
  • Despair Event Horizon: Ash nearly goes over it at the end of Tribulations after losing his father.
    • Dalton and Zinnia are both implied to have crossed it long ago.
    • IDEAL has long since crossed it.
  • Detect Evil: Greninja almost seems able to sense when trouble's happening.
  • Determinator: All of the protagonists, special mention goes to Ash who continues fighting despite all the abuse he takes.
  • Disappeared Dad: Ash's father. Eventually subverted when he becomes a major character in Tribulations.
    • In The Alola Trilogy, Gladion states that his father Mohn disappeared in an experiment years ago.
  • Disappears into Light: Happens to Zinnia and the Draconids after their defeat and the destruction of the meteorites.
    • Also happens to DARC. Implied that they returned to their own world.
  • Disc-One Final Boss: Seamus serves as this at the end of the Kalos Team Tournament.
  • Disc-One Nuke: Greninja, one of Ash's strongest Pokemon, goes with the group to Alola, though Ash never uses him this way.
  • Disproportionate Retribution: Travis, after losing in the Tournament, joins the Draconids and then Team Neo in an attempt to destroy the world and the people who beat him.
  • Distant Finale: The Epilogue of Tribulations takes place seven years after the main story.
    • Zigzagged when much of the "Road to Tomorrow" series of stories take place after that point.
  • Divergent Character Evolution: The members of DARC are all radically different than their counterparts in the main universe owing to different pasts.
  • Diverting Power: Team Rocket's Tera Tera Meowth diverts extra power to the limbs in order to store the excess Mega Evolution energy.
  • Divided We Fall: All the teams in the Kalos Team Tournament struggle against the Draconids because they were too busy arguing before the original attack.
  • Don't Celebrate Just Yet: Dalton is defeated. Rayquaza is gone. Only, Serena realizes that Ash and Seamus have fallen into a lake with a giant airship on a collision course for them...
  • Doom Magnet: Ash has started to be seen as this by the Champions in Tropics.
  • Doorstopper: The entire series consists of t flagship stories, with individual wordcounts between 150,000 and 300,000, and about 18 other oneshots. In total, that's about 1.8 million words.
  • Double Agent: Vice President Michael turns out to be the leader of DARC.
  • Double-Meaning Title: Many chapter titles tend to have a double meaning such as "A Loss", "A Sunrise", "A Tear", etc.
    • Bonus points to the title of the first fic which refers to platonic, familial and romantic love as part of "Love" and "Teamwork" representing the tournament, ending and the villains.
  • Double Take: Greninja has this reaction when he hears that Braixen is his love interest for a play he starred in during the the one shots First, Fans, and Failures.
  • Down to the Last Play: The Kalos Team Tournament essentially boils down to Ash vs. Seamus, with a single point hanging in the balance.
  • Dramatic Chase Opening: Tropics opens with Lillie on the run, getting chased.
  • Dramatic Drop: Delia's camera drops, informing Ash and Serena, much to their embarrassment and dread, that both mothers just saw them kissing.
    • Lillie drops her bag loudly at the mention of the Aether Foundation's president.
  • Dramatic Irony: In Alola, the gang frequently encounters some rude or suspicious-acting people, but don't think much about it. To the audience, however, it's painfully obvious that it's Team Rocket behind yet another Paper-Thin Disguise.
    • Serena chooses to go to Snowbelle City in Turbulence to find Ash, but the audience already knows he's at Shalour City.
  • Dramatic Unmask: Merle is revealed to actually be a Zoroark towards the end of Turbulence.
    • Many of the members of DARC in Tribulations wear masks of some kind, which cover up the fact that they are alternate-universe counterparts of several of the cast.
  • Dressing as the Enemy: Serena and Dawn sneak aboard a Team Rocket airship, and put on some grunt uniforms to investigate when it returns to headquarters. They do fairly well, even briefly coming face-to-face with Giovanni, but the ruse falls apart when they run into Butch and Cassidy twice. Fittingly, the chapter is titled "An Infiltration".
  • Driven to Villainy: Dalton was pushed into this over time after he lost his wife and then his daughter, which he blames on the League's inaction.
    • The same goes for the Alpha Squad members from their losses.
  • Dying as Yourself: Played with. Reeree chooses to make her own choice and die as the Serena she once was rather than what her father made her into.
    • Lusamine finally overcomes her madness in her last moments, giving Lillie and Gladion her love.
  • Early-Bird Cameo: Jack Ketchum appears in the last chapter of Turbulence despite not having a role until Tribulations.
    • Maka appears in the second chapter of Tropics, same as Keoni in Chapter 5, neither are fully introduced until Chapter 11 and 7 respectively.
    • The Four Pillars are mentioned in the last chapter of Tenacity before their major role in Tomorrow.
  • Earn Your Happy Ending:
    • Tribulations definitely becomes this with heavy losses, hard battles, and their beliefs being strained to the limits. Everything finally comes to a peaceful end, however.
    • Tomorrow certainly applies here between the numerous character deaths and general brutality of the finale.
  • Easily Forgiven: Somewhat. Seamus and Team Brutal are forgiven for their actions, though more because of the situation than anything.
  • Egg Sitting: Serena receives an egg that she takes care of in Tropics. It eventually hatches into an Alolan Sandshrew.
  • Egocentric Team Naming: Played with. Team Ketchum is clearly named after Ash, but it's Serena who coins it, and not Ash.
  • Embarrassed by a Child: Bonnie loves to do this with Ash and Serena, then later Clemont and Korrina along with Lillie and Hau.
  • Embarrassing Nickname: Downplayed with Gary's "Ashy-boy".
  • Embodiment of Vice: The Seven of DARC all represent one of the Seven Deadly Sins.
  • Emerald Power: The meteorites all seem to glow a bright green no matter what.
  • Emergency Authority: Diantha is granted full authority over the Kalos Region when Goodshow is taken hostage.
  • Emergency Broadcast: One is given on the evening of Day 2 of the Peace Tournament to report on a lab fire.
  • EMP: Reeree uses one to cause the platform at the Peace Tournament to fall.
  • Empty Quiver: The final key to activate the Ultimate Weapon inevitably ends up in DARC's hands.
  • Ending Memorial Service: Seamus, the main characters and everyone in the Nova Incident hold one for Dalton and Merle.
  • The End of the World as We Know It: What Gurkinn thinks Team Neo is up to. He isn't wrong, but it's not the way he thinks.
    • This is what DARC is trying to do, by any means necessary. Their leader Micheal also aided other villainous teams' attempts, such as giving Team Galactic the possible location of the Spear Pillar. In the present day, DARC aims to bring it about by using the Ultimate Weapon.
    • Micheal eventually reveals that his own world is about to undergo one, and thinks he can avert that destruction by destroying this world.
  • "End of the World" Special: Serena has the chance to make a single wish with Jirachi. Subverted as nothing is actually fixed in Ancien City, but it does end the battle.
    • The same happens with Ho-oh. The world is restored, but the city is in ruins and everyone who died is still dead.
  • Endurance Duel: Aria vs. Bruce becomes this, with time running out before a winner is decided. However, Brock notes that Aria had been gaining the advantage, and likely would've won with more time.
  • Enemy Mine: The protagonists team up with Team Neo to force Rayquaza into the incomplete time portal.
    • Done with Team Rocket every time.
  • Energy Absorption: Clemont designs a machine to absorb the Mega Evolution energy contained in the Four Gates.
  • Enigmatic Empowering Entity: The Tapus seem to provide Z-Rings for some currently unknown purpose to specific trainers.
  • Epic Fail: Team Ketchum doesn't score a single point on the first day of the Kalos Team Tournament.
  • Equal-Opportunity Evil: Team Neo is willing to take anyone to join their cause.
    • Team Skull accepts just about anybody as well, given they're considered the losers of Alola.
  • Establishing Character Moment: Seamus' first act is to liberally insult Serena.
    • Dalton is introduced by bombing the League and then putting out a message inviting all trainers to join him.
    • Maka makes her introduction framing Serena as though she were filming a movie.
    • Keoni's intro has him insulting Jessie with a sneer, and later Ash and the others.
  • Eureka Moment: When Lillie is terrified by the Aether Foundation, Ash is puzzled, as she didn't freak out during any of the group's previous interactions with them. However, he thinks back and realizes that she wasn't actually around those times (save for one quick and minor moment).
  • Even Evil Has Loved Ones: Zinnia very clearly loved Aster, and the Draconids love her. All the members of Alpha Squad are driven by this.
    • Subverted by Carl, who has his son Travis Impaled with Extreme Prejudice and then tossed into the ocean.
    • Plumeria of Team Skull genuinely cares for her brothers and sisters in the group, and hates seeing them hurt.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Team Neo will not hurt any children if they can help it.
  • Everyone Can See It: From Brock, to Gary to everyone around them, they can all tell Serena has a crush on Ash...and eventually that Ash is falling for Serena.
  • Everyone's Baby Sister: Bonnie is pretty much this through The Kalos Trilogy and still has shades of it in Alola, though Lillie begins to take this role there.
  • Everything's Better with Penguins: Dawn's Piplup, as always.
  • Evil All Along: Michael.
  • Evil Costume Switch: Michael changes his clothes, removes his goatee and takes off his glasses when it's revealed he's the leader of DARC.
  • Evil Doppelgänger: DARC is made of several corresponding, particularly, to Gary, Paul, Serena, Miette, and Clemont.
  • Evil Former Friend: Travis becomes this for the later parts of The Kalos Trilogy.
    • It's implied, and later outright confirmed, that Guzma was this to Kukui, once upon a time.
  • Evil Is Hammy: Guzma seems to resort to Chewing the Scenery with his dialogue whenever he's in a scene.
  • Evil Plan: Dalton has a major one running through with numerous parts until its completion.
  • Exactly Exty Years Ago: Lots of mentions are made to something having happened in Alola 6 years ago, which resulted in the death of the Poni Island Kahuna and Nanu having a Cynicism Catalyst.
  • Excessive Evil Eyeshadow: Plumeria is described as wearing this.
  • Expendable Alternate Universe: What DARC thinks regarding the main universe.
  • Experienced Protagonist: The Ancienverse picks up when Ash is already quite the accomplished trainer in the middle of the XYZ Series.
  • Explain, Explain... Oh, Crap!: Clemont informs Serena and Bethany of where he tracked Team Neo to...only to realize that they're right overhead as they bomb the town.
  • Exposition Diagram: Diantha uses one to detail the battle plan for everyone before the Final Battle.
  • External Retcon: It's revealed that Michael and DARC were behind every villainous plot to date in the entire anime series.
  • Extremely Short Timespan: The entirety of Turbulence takes place over roughly two days.
  • The Extremist Was Right: Diantha admits that Dalton had a point about the League needing to change.
  • Eyes Always Shut: Hala and Brock, as per their character designs.
  • Face Death with Dignity: Jack knows he'll die, but he goes out proudly.
  • Faceless Goons: Team Neo operates this way with its grunts.
  • Failed a Spot Check: Ash, Seamus and Clemont infiltrate an abandoned radio station...not realizing the place is lined with traps until too late.
  • Famed In-Story: Ash and his friends become very famous, particularly by the end of The Kalos Trilogy.
  • Family of Choice: The main protagonists are a happy little family. Subverted in that most don't hate their biological family.
  • Family-Unfriendly Death: Reeree getting impaled by Mega Scizor and Mega Aggron is described quite gruesomely.
  • Fan-Art: The series has several different pieces, which can be seen on its covers.
  • Fan Boy: Sophocles is this for Clemont in Trials.
  • Fan Verse: It is an entire universe of 7 major fics and numerous oneshots, after all.
  • Fashion Designer: Miss Akela of Akela Apparel.
  • Fatal Flaw: Alain's need to win bites him in the ass a lot until he gets over it.
  • Fat Slob: Cedric. Lampshaded by Jessie.
  • Faux Death: It appears that Travis dies after being impaled by his father. He didn't.
  • Feminine Women Can Cook: Serena certainly can, as can Lillie.
  • Field Power Effect: Electric Terrain is used often by Clemont to power up Electric type moves.
  • The Final Battle: The battle that takes place on "The Final Day" is precisely this. More accurately, Ash, Serena and Clemont vs. Michael.
    • The battle that takes place on the "Day of Stars" with Ash, Serena, Clemont, Bonnie, Team Rocket, Hau, Guzma, the Island Guardians, "Nebby", and Lunala vs. Lusamine and Necrozma.
    • The battle between Ash and Deirdre in "Tomorrow"
  • Fire-Forged Friends: Everyone who fought after the Kalos Team Tournament becomes this.
    • Astrid joins this after The Nova Incident.
  • First Girl Wins: Serena, having been the first one to have met Ash as children, is also the one who ends up with him.
  • Finger Wag: Dierdre has a habit of doing this when talking to others.
  • Five-Man Band: Team Ketchum during the Kalos Team Tournament
  • Flashback: A lengthy one in Chapter 21 of Teamwork showing Zinnia's past.
  • Flat "What": Gladion has then in the final chapter of Ancienverse when Hau announces his plans to marry Lillie Hilarity Ensues.
  • Flower in Her Hair: Serena wears asters and zinnias in her hair at the Victory Ball.
  • Flower Motif: Zinnia and Aster's names and meaning serve as this for the final act of Teamwork.
  • Follow Your Nose: Rockruff uses her nose to find Revival Herb in Lush Jungle.
  • Foolish Sibling, Responsible Sibling: Bonnie and Clemont play this to a degree. More noticeable in Dartrix and Trumbeak, however.
  • Forced to Watch: President Goodshow is unable to do anything as Bonnie is Mind Raped by Latios, as a way to coerce him into giving up some extremely important information to DARC.
  • Foregone Conclusion: It's a given that Ash, Serena, Clemont and Bonnie will survive the events of The Alola Trilogy.
  • Forgotten Fallen Friend: Heavily averted. Serena's entire goal begins around keeping her promise to Reeree.
    • Lionel's death is much of the impetus behind the character's actions in Tomorrow and Ash even invokes a Say My Name when delivering the final blow.
  • Former Friends Photo: There's one of Seamus, Travis and Merle in Seamus' house.
    • Kukui has one of himself, Akela and Guzma.
  • For Want of a Nail: Reeree's entire life changed when she chose to stay in Kanto at the end of Summer Camp instead of going home to Kalos, drastically changing her and Ash's life in their world.
  • The Four Loves: Exemplified through the series:
    • Storge: The XY family comes together as this, along with the relationship between Ash and his father.
    • Philia: Every major character relies on each other and their friendships to pull them through.
    • Eros: Ash and Serena, given their romance, come across as this.
    • Agape: Most notable between Serena and Reeree, despite the latter trying to kill the former.
    Serena: Share your pain with me...and I'll share my smile with you.
  • Fragile Speedster: Gladion's Salandit.
  • Friendly Rivalry: Ash has one of these with Sawyer in the Team Tournament, along with Tierno and Conway.
    • Serena has one with Miette, Nini, and Shauna.
    • In Alola, they form new rivalries with Hau and Original Character Maka, respectively.
  • From Nobody to Nightmare: Dalton goes from a teacher in a small town to a man able to bring the League to its knees.
    • Michael, who goes from some unknown man in a country village to a complete mastermind that orchestrates nearly nine world-ending catasrophes.
  • Forgettable Character: Bruce, Trent and Portia from the Kalos Team Tournament, to the point that they're barely even involved in the final conflict's resolution.
    • Humorously, Bruce and Trent reappear in Tribulations, and Serena can't remember which is which.
  • Frontline General: Diantha, Jack and Ash all take to the battlefield as they command it, usually fighting at the head of the army.
  • Fun with Acronyms: ARC stands for the Artifact Recovery Corps.
    • DARC stands for the Destruction and Reparation Coalition.
    • Later on is the ASPEN Conference.
    • In "Tomorrow" there's IDEAL
  • Fusion Dance: Necrozma combines with Lusamine and a Nililego to form the Motherbeast, the Final Boss of the Alola Trilogy.
  • Fuuma Shuriken: Greninja, naturally, uses one of these in Ash-Greninja form.
    • It's later theorized that the giant orange shuriken used against Alain's Charizard was actually an incomplete Z-Move, explaining why it lacked power. Kukui manages to find a Greninjium-Z crystal and gives it to Ash. They subsequently master the move, now called "Scorching Shuriken", during Kiawe's Trial.
  • Genericist Government: The Pokemon League is one of these.
  • Genki Girl: Maka.
  • Get Ahold Of Yourself Man: Alain receives one of these from Clemont, Mairin and Team Rocket as he starts to shut down again in his third battle with Cedric.
  • Get It Over With: Alter!Gary requests this upon his defeat.
  • Glory Seeker: Seamus, pre-Character Development.
  • Godzilla Threshold: Ash finally decides to call in Latias with the Eon Flute in order to rescue Lillie from the Aether Foundation.
  • Going Home Again: Ash and his friends return to Pallet Town after the end of The Kalos Trilogy.
  • Goldfish Poop Gang: Team Rocket, as always, but the Team Skull grunts in Alola take this Up to Eleven. Absolutely nobody takes them seriously, and Ash's group often overhears disparaging remarks about the grunts.
  • Go Mad from the Revelation: Downplayed. Michael snaps when he finds out his world is doomed, leading him to work tirelessly to destroy any other world and person, including his own daughter, in the process.
  • Gone Horribly Right: The Seven are defeated in The Final Battle, only for that defeat to lead to Yveltal breaking free and wreaking havoc.
  • Gone Horribly Wrong: Team Neo's plan to secure Rayquaza goes horribly wrong when it breaks free and starts trying to destroy everything, including them.
  • Good Is Not Nice: Neither Lionel nor Aidan have any compunctions about being nasty to their enemies, despite being the good guys.
  • Go Out with a Smile: Reeree dies this way.
    Reeree: I'm sharing my smile with you.
    • Nanu goes out laughing as he takes down Tolbert and Louise.
  • Gosh Dang It to Heck!: Most of the canon characters don't use swear words (which makes it a case of O.O.C. Is Serious Business when they do). Original characters have no problem with it.
  • Go Through Me: Ash says a variant of this to Zinnia about hurting Serena.
  • Gotta Get Your Head Together: Most of the army covers their heads at the sound of Yveltal's seals being released.
  • Government Agency of Fiction: The Pokemon League serves as this for the world.
  • Graceful Loser: New trainer Hau takes his loss to Ash in stride, and he keeps this attitude when he loses to Ash again in the League.
  • Grand Finale: Tribulations served as this for the series, but later subverted when the author decided to make the Alola Trilogy.
    • Tomorrow is the true finale of the Ancienverse.
  • Gratuitous Foreign Language: Lots of Hawaiian words are used, especially by Hau, in The Alola Trilogy.
  • Grave-Marking Scene: Played with. Ash stands before his father's grave at the end of the first series.
  • Greater-Scope Villain: Lusmine's obsession with the Ultra Beasts is revealed to be yet another of Michael's plans to destroy the world, despite him being dead by this point. He's also the one that influenced Necrozma's actions, and set IDEAL's own plans into motion for the final story..
  • Great Escape: Ash and Seamus' escape from Team Neo's airship and pursuers.
    • Bonnie and Goodshow also attempt one from DARC's base.
  • Great Offscreen War: The war between ARC and DARC has waged for over a decade, but not a single moment is shown, other than through visions.
  • Green Rocks: The meteorites and the Four Gates both glow green and hold mysterious properties.
  • Group Hug: Tearjerking variety. All of Ash's friends and Pokemon hug him while he grieves over his father's death.
  • Growing Up Sucks: The main characters are forced to realize that they've had to grow up to face the numerous conflicts before them, and it gives them a responsibility to face them as well.
  • Grow Old with Me: Variation at the end of Tribulations. Ash asks Serena to always be with him.
  • Guest-Star Party Member: Astrid joins the group for a time during "Turbulence".
    • Hau acts like one from time to time.
  • Guilt-Free Extermination War: What DARC views their task of destroying the world as being by calling it "killing a nest of monsters".
  • Gut Punch: Reeree's death. And Merry's sacrifice.
  • Hair of Gold, Heart of Gold: Serena, who has honey-blonde hair and is arguably the nicest character in the series.
  • Hand Wave: Pikachu and Greninja finding Ash is explained by "super, sneaky ninja skills and Travis is stupid" by the author himself.
  • Happily Ever After: Implied to be the case at the end of the series.
  • Happily Married: Kukui and Burnet.
    • Christopher and Bethany also get married during the second Time Skip.
    • The threeshot Love in the Time of Matrimony is all about Ash and Serena finally getting married.
    • A lesser version by the "Road to Tomorrow" with Clemont and Korrina revealing that they're engaged
  • Harbinger of Impending Doom: Rayquaza is this in Teamwork and Turbulence.
  • Hate Sink: Keoni. He's nowhere near as psychopathic as Travis, but more than makes up for by being a complete Jerkass. He hits on Serena at every opportunity, despite knowing she's Ash's girlfriend; thinks very little of Clemont and Ash's battling skills, even though he's lost to Ash; and in general seems to be a rich Entitled Bastard. Even Serena quickly gets tired of dealing with him.
  • Hearing Voices: Ash and Serena hear the voices of Tapu Koko and Tapu Lele respectively, in their heads.
  • The Heart: Serena becomes this.
  • Heel–Face Turn: Team Brutal softens out and becomes Team Nova after losing the Kalos Team Tournament, except for Travis.
    • The Alpha Squad of Team Neo get integrated into ARC after they help save the day in Tribulations.
    • Team Skull as a whole makes a gradual turn, first with Plumeria and the grunts wanting to save Guzma, and then Guzma himself once he comes to his senses. Humorously, they're still bickering on what their new name should be even years later.
    • The Team Rocket trio of Jessie, James, and Meowth reluctantly become moles for ARC, but they fully and openly turn against Giovanni in Tomorrow.
  • Hell Is That Noise: Yveltal's screeches before awakening make many of the trainers wonder what it is they're hearing.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Jack does this at the end of the final battle in Tribulations to save Ash.
    • Lionel sacrifices himself to save Aidan and the few remaining members of ARC when IDEAL attacks their base.
    • Nanu of all people does this in the final battle of Tomorrow and takes Tollbert and Louise with him.
    • Rocky tries to do this to Tolbert early on in Tomorrow, but while the latter survives, the action delayed him from chasing everyone else, narrowly averting Senseless Sacrifice.
  • He Who Fights Monsters: Implied that this is what DARC has become, believing the main characters to be the monsters, while slowly becoming monsters themselves. Noted by Serena.
    Serena: I won't. Because we're not like you. We don't live like we're already dead, like what we do doesn't matter. It does.
  • Hey, Catch!: A variation when DARC ejects Mairin from their airship in order to provide a distraction to get away.
  • High-Dive Escape: Ash jumps off of an airship twice.
  • Holding Hands: Ash and Serena do this a lot after becoming a couple.
  • Hollywood Encryption: How Clemont tracks down Team Neo.
  • Hollywood Healing: Despite getting pummeled, slashed across the side, and nearly drowning, Ash is completely fine with no scars.
    • The same applies to Clemont who takes a Dragon Rush to the chest and is entirely fine a week later.
    • Seamus, as well, after getting stabbed in the chest.
    • And then there's Travis, who also gets Impaled with Extreme Prejudice, and is dumped in the ocean for several hours before being rescued. A few days later, he's well enough to participate in the final battle.
  • Hormone-Addled Teenager: A toned down version, but starting from their third date in Thirds, Thrills, and Temperature to the end of the Alola Trilogy, Ash and Serena increasingly become more physically intimate with each other to the point where their third date was ruined because of their hormones. Even though their intimacy never went past hugs or kissing, Tenacity both implies that They Do and shows that when both were exposed Nihilego's neurotoxins they could become much more intimate even in public.
  • Honor Before Reason: Ash chooses to take on Team Neo as soon as he realizes they're nearby, despite everyone else telling him it's a bad idea.
  • Hope Spot: Michael is defeated? Check. The Seven are done for? Yep. A plan to take care of Yveltal and the Weapon are in place? For sure. Everything's going right for the heroes...except the Weapon fires and takes Ash's father with it.
    • Four members of IDEAL are down and Ash is engaging Deirdre? Looks like a win! Except, Deirdre was never there, has been in the city the whole time and IDEAL stands up to fight again, leading to the deaths of Diantha, Merry, Nanu...and IDEAL's victory.
  • Huge Rider, Tiny Mount: Talonflame carries Ash through the third day's obstacle course despite being half his size.
  • Humans Are Ugly: What Zinnia and the Draconids believe, particularly about the world they're in.

    Tropes I-N 
  • Ignored Epiphany: Travis never seems to learn that his horrible actions are the cause of all his strife, even after getting impaled by his father.
    • Alain starts to suffer from this after being defeated by Cedric, shrinking into his old self rather than realizing his flaws. Thankfully, he snaps out of it.
  • I Just Want to Be Special: What Seamus wanted during the Kalos Team Tournament, in a sense.
  • Improvised Parachute: Serena has Sylveon use her Fairy Wind as this to land safely.
  • Inciting Incident: The League bombing in Turbulence kicks the entire plot off.
  • Indy Ploy: Ash pulls one escaping from Team Neo by using tree branches to get safe and circle away from Merle before flinging wild Pineco at her that explode.
  • The Infiltration: Ash leads his friends into infiltrating a radio station where Team Neo is believed to be located.
    • In Tomorrow Serena and Dawn infiltrate Team Rocket headquarters to find information on Ash's whereabouts.
  • The Informant: Kalas turns out to be one for the Pokemon G-Men.
  • Interrupted Declaration of Love: Serena is about to confess after the Tournament when the lights suddenly go out.
  • Inside Job: President Goodshow's kidnapping is revealed to be this after Michael is shown as the leader of DARC.
  • In Spite of a Nail: Michael believes that despite Ash's death in his world, the world will keep on going until it reaches the end of its time.
  • Instant Sedation: Bonnie, Mairin and President Goodshow fall prey to this, courtesy of DARC.
  • It's Personal: The battle with Team Rocket and IDEAL becomes this to Aidan after Lionel is killed by them.
  • It Only Works Once: When Ash is competing against Conway, his first move is to have Noivern confuse Dusknoir so it can't set up Trick Room, like in their Sinnoh League match.
    • Similarly, Gary's Blastoise goes up against Travis's Magmorter, prompting the latter to gloatingly heat up the field to replicate how Ash's Charizard beat Blastoise in Johto. However, Gary reveals that he's long since thought up a counter; create so much steam that fire attacks are also ineffective.
  • It's Probably Nothing: Pikachu notices something in a forest they stop in for the night on their way to Allearth. Ash passes it off as nothing. Turns out they were being followed.
  • It Was with You All Along: Ash realizes that his answer to being a Pokemon Master is quite simply his desires of meeting and helping others, allowing him to proclaim that he's already a Pokemon Master.
  • Jerkass: Seamus, pre-Character Development. Travis, as well, though he never grew out of it.
  • Jumping Off the Slippery Slope: Travis does this after outright not learning his lesson, going so far as to join Team Neo.
  • Just a Kid: Diantha's reasoning for why Ash and the others shouldn't be involved.
  • Karma Houdini Warranty: Travis escapes overt punishment in numerous ways before finally dying at the end of Tribulations.
  • Keep Away: Talonflame and Yanmega play this game with each other with a Keystone.
  • Kids Are Cruel: Travis exhibits this best.
  • Kids Versus Adults: Played with. The battle in Turbulence is essentially a battle between children and adults, with the children arguing that they aren't quite children anymore.
  • Kill All Humans: DARC's ultimate plan.
  • Killed Off for Real: Numerous characters fall in the finale, including Lionel and ARC, Rocky, Giovanni and nearly all of Team Rocket, Diantha and her Gardevoir, Nanu, and Merry.
  • Kill Sat: The Ultimate Weapon essentially serves as this. Doubles as a Legendary Weapon.
  • Knight of Cerebus: Zinnia is this for Teamwork, while Dalton becomes this for the Ancienverse as a whole. DARC takes it even further in Tribulations.
    • Guzma and Lusamine serve as this in the Alola Trilogy, pushing at both the plot and Ash and Serena's own way of thinking.
  • Knight Templar: Dalton, who truly believes that what he's doing is the right way to do things.
  • Lady of War: Aria during the Ancien Debacle.
  • Laser-Guided Karma: After all of his crap, Travis finally meets his end via Yveltal's Death Ray, while those who repented survived.
  • Last Breath Bullet: Dalton is defeated, and the heroes down below have almost succeeded... only for Travis to show up and slice Ash's side. Subverted in that neither die.
  • Late-Arrival Spoiler: The fact that Ash's father died is pretty freely discussed from the Alola Trilogy on, so anyone coming in then would have this major event spoiled.
  • Leave Him to Me: Aidan and Astrid say this to Bethany and Christopher when they come face to face with Tolbert in order to avenge Lionel and Rocky
  • Leave the Two Lovebirds Alone: Averted. All of Ash's friends decide to peek on Ash and Serena's confessions and kiss with one another.
  • Let's Get Dangerous!: Cedric drops his gluttonous mannerisms and odd demeanor when he decides to deliver a Curb-Stomp Battle to Alain.
  • Let's Get Out of Here: Ash, Seamus and Clemont upon wanting to escape the radio station.
  • Let's Split Up, Gang: In Trials, after Ash and Serena get into an argument on where their next destination is, she suggests they go their separate ways for a while.
  • Life Energy: Xerneas is awakened by draining this from Pokemon, and uses it to help destroy the Weapon.
  • Lighthearted Rematch: Somewhat. Ash, Serena and Clemont battle members of Team Brutal at the beginning of Turbulence, though it's just for fun.
  • Line in the Sand: Diantha tells the trainers to only do what they think they can, but that if they join the fight, there's no turning back.
  • The Little Detecto: Clemont builds two to track first airship emissions and then Mega Evolution Energy.
  • Living Battery: Yveltal serves as this for the Ultimate Weapon.
  • Loads and Loads of Characters: At 130 distinct human characters and 234 distinct Pokémon, for a combined total of 364 characters, this trope definitely applies.
  • The Lost Lenore: Reeree, an alternate universe Serena, reveals that her version of Ash was killed in a rockslide not long into their journey together. She had moved to Kanto after the childhood summer camp, so they were just as close as the regular Ash and Serena.
  • Lost Superweapon: A major plot point in Tribulations is that the Ultimate Weapon from the games exists in this universe and was found by Dalton. DARC seeks to use it.
  • Love Confession: Both Ash and Serena make one to one another at the Victory Ball, following their dance, and finally becoming the Official Couple.
    • Ironically there's a second one in IDEAL's perfect world but it comes off as hollow.
  • Love Epiphany: Ash has one developing through Teamwork but comes to realize what it is after Serena confesses to him.
  • Love Triangle: Averted and Played with. Serena thinks there might be one with past female companions of Ash's only for them to encourage her. However, Miette certainly seems to flirt with Ash, only to step aside the second Ash chooses Serena.
    • Keoni attempts to invoke this unsuccessfully.
  • Luke, I Am Your Father: Ash's father Jack Ketchum (codename Red) shows up as the leader of ARC, fighting against DARC. He drops the bombshell early into the Peace Tournament in Tribulations, though he does admit that he's been watching Ash's progress for years.
  • Made of Explodium: Greninja's Water Shuriken seems to explode on contact with things.
  • Made of Indestructium: The meteors in Acien City can take dozens of attacks without a single scratch. Clemont figures out that the only thing powerful enough to destroy them is an attack from Mega Rayquaza.
  • Magnificent Bastard: Michael. From orchestrating ten different world-ending scenarios to impacting characters well after his death, this trope certainly applies.
  • Magnetic Hero: Ash and Serena are both this, inspiring people to listen and follow them.
  • Make Room for the New Plot: The celebrations of the Kalos Team Tournament are very quickly shoved aside in favor of the Draconids' arrival.
  • Making the Choice for You: Clemont and Serena hold Ash back so he doesn't have to decide between watching his father die, or dying with him.
  • Make Up or Break Up: Ash and Serena deal with wanting to protect each other, even going so far as for Ash to keep her out of danger instead of letting her fight.
  • The Man Behind the Man: Micheal is revealed to have had a hand in the schemes of every single villainous team so far, including manipulating the Draconids and Team Neo.
  • Mass Teleportation: Diantha's Gardevoir manages to transport all of the trainers as far away from the Weapon as possible using teleportation.
  • Meaningful Background Event: The waiter and cooks of the cafe at the Peace Tournament always seem angry, gossipy or packing up. Later, Clemont notices that a random croissant is missing. Turns out they're Team Rocket, following them all along.
  • Meaningful Name: Pick a name of any original character, just about:
    • Dalton: Meant to sound like Delta, or change, which is what he's trying to achieve
      • All of Alpha Squad's names have something to do with their purpose
    • The code names of most of DARC's members resemble the names of their doppelgangers in the main universe, such as Reeree for Serena
    • Merle, meaning "shadow". is revealed to be literally just that, since she's a Zoroark.
    • Most of IDEAL shares in this, with Alastair meaning "defense", Toll being a reference to the toll gate of death, and Deirdre meaning "Burning, sorrowful rage", which hints at her condition.
  • Mirror Universe: Most of DARC hails from one.
  • Misfit Mobilization Moment: After spending most of Teamwork battling and fighting with each other, all of the trainers are forced to come together to battle the current threat when Serena yells at them to get up.
  • Misplaced Retribution: Travis decides to take out his constant losses on the world by wanting to destroy it.
  • Missed Him by That Much: Gladion searches for Lillie, yet frequently runs into Ash just as she is busy elsewhere.
  • Missile Lock-On: Team Neo locks its weapons onto the League and Nova Town early on in Turbulence.
  • Mole in Charge: DARC's leader Michael is the Vice President of the Pokemon League the whole time.
  • Moment Killer: After Ash and Serena kiss in an early chapter of Tribulations, Miette shows up just to ruin it.
  • Most Fanfic Writers Are Girls: Averted. Epicocity is male, though often mistaken for a girl due to his writing style.
  • Motive Rant: Dalton delivers one before his final battle with Ash and Seamus.
    • Michael later delivers one before the final battle against himself.
  • My Country, Right or Wrong: What The Seven all believe about their goal, no matter who it hurts.
  • My Sister Is Off-Limits!: Gladion doesn't take too kindly to Hau being in love with Lillie, it get's even worse when Hau and Lillie become an Official Couple. He outright tries to strangle him in the final chapter.
  • Mythology Gag: The Totem Mimikyu acts much like Jessie's Mimikyu from the SM anime, having a hatred of Pikachu. It's explained that the abandoned Megamart used to have a Pikachu as its mascot, and seeing that popular image everyday gave the Totem Pokemon jealousy.
    • At one point, Jessie's Bewear runs across water, much to the astonishment of everyone watching.
  • Named Weapon: Not a weapon per se, but anything created by Clemont falls under this trope, as it is in the series proper.
  • Never My Fault: Travis can't seem to accept that his losses are his own fault, along with everything else in his life.
  • No One Gets Left Behind: Ash's mentality in rescuing Seamus while running from Team Neo.
  • Not a Date: Ash and Serena go to the third night's festival together. Serena views it as one, while Ash (at the time) views it as two friends hanging out together.
  • Not So Above It All: Alain freaks out at having to wear a suit to a ceremony.
    • Greninja displays this in Tomorrow by gleefully diving into a basket of fruit at the end of the story, humorously surprising Ash.

    Tropes O-Z 
  • Oh, Crap!: Rocky when Ash thrashes his Rhyperior with Ash-Greninja.
  • Older Hero vs. Younger Villain: Inverted. Dalton is much older than Ash.
  • Olympus Mons: Rayquaza plays a major role in the plots of Teamwork and Tribulations.
    • In Tribulations, a Latias works with ARC, while a Latios works with DARC.
    • Both Xerneas and Yveltal are involved in the final battle.
    • The Tapus influence the backstory in Alola, and Squishy and the blue Zygarde Core make a return appearance..
    • Ho-Oh and Marshadow have a prominent role in Tomorrow
  • Omnicidal Maniac: Travis eventually takes this mindset, continually wanting revenge on the whole world for perceived unfairness to himself (see Never My Fault).
  • Once per Episode: A Salamence appears in each flagship story of the Kalos Trilogy.
    • Team Rocket, more or less, only seems to be able to say their full motto once a flagship story, with any other attempt usually being cut off in some fashion.
  • One True Sequence: Almost every single item the heroes go after in Tribulations inevitably leads to a battle with DARC, who are after the same thing.
  • One-Winged Angel: Dalton's Medicham Mega Evolves for the final battle in Turbulence.
    • Several members of DARC have access to Mega Evolution as well.
    • Lusamine's Fusion Dance with Necrozma and Nihilego to create the Motherbeast.
    • Surprisingly averted in Tomorrow when the final battle is actually just Pikachu vs. Marshadow.
  • O.O.C. Is Serious Business: Clemont punches Edwin across the face during the Ancien Debacle, showing how serious the situation is.
  • Opposing Sports Team: While any team could qualify during the Kalos Team Tournament, Team Brutal fits this the best for every other team, especially Team Ketchum.
  • Original Position Fallacy: Michael dies when the Ultimate Weapon fires on him...which is what he was planning to do to the world.
  • Paper-Thin Disguise: Team Rocket in the Kalos Team Tournament, to the point that Ash and co. can actually notice them this time!
  • The Pardon: Alpha Squad are pardoned from their actions in the Nova Incident after helping in The Final Battle. Overlaps with Recruiting the Criminal.
  • Parental Substitute: Ash and Serena become this to Lillie in the Alola Trilogy even though she's not much younger than them.
    • Lionel becomes this to Ash after his father dies.
  • Parents Walk In at the Worst Time: Delia and Grace happen to enter Centrico Plaza just in time to see Ash and Serena kissing. And they didn't know they were dating...
  • Patrick Stewart Speech: Ash delivers a number of these to Michael, though none of them are successful.
    • The final battle with Deirdre becomes one long string of these.
  • Percussive Prevention: Astrid knocks out Reeree with a rock to the head when she tries to kill Serena.
  • Portal to the Past: What Dalton is trying to achieve. This would subject the current universe to Ret Gone, which is why he has to be stopped.
  • Pre-Asskicking One-Liner: "Let's wreck!" said by Rocky.
  • Protected by a Child: Clime has no problem using Bonnie as a shield to protect himself against his opponents.
  • Proud Warrior Race: The Draconids are implied to be this.
  • The Quiet One: Christopher.
  • Race Against the Clock: Downplayed. The protagonists have to hurry to stop each dimensional rift from forming, but there's no explicit timer.
    • Everyone also has a limited amount of time to get into position before the Ultra Beasts invade the world.
  • Really 700 Years Old: AZ, as in game canon.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Zinnia delivers a scathing one to Serena about dreams and the future.
    • Serena finally snaps and gives a harsh one to Keoni, after one too many insulting remarks about Ash. It actually seems to get through his It's All About Me personality.
  • Rebuilt Pedestal: Seamus has this for Ash by the end of Teamwork, though the pedestal is even higher by the end of Turbulence.
  • Recruiting the Criminal: Alpha Squad is released from prison and chooses to work for Diantha. Later, they begin working for the League full-time.
    • By the end of the Alola Trilogy, Team Rocket are offered a job with ARC, which they took.
    • Cynthia and Steven imply that they're willing to give Matori and Alastair a chance for redemption by working for the league in the future. Subverted in that Matori and Alastair both used to work for the League in the first place.
  • Redemption Equals Death: Reeree comes to see the error of DARC's ways, and tries to stop the fighting, only to sacrifice herself saving Serena's life.
    • Travis' final action is to push Seamus out of the way of a Death Ray.
  • Redemption Quest: Seamus undergoes one throughout Turbulence even attempting to kill himself.
  • Red Shirt Army: Team Neo during the final battle; they get mowed down in droves by the protagonists.
  • Refusal of the Call: Nanu would really prefer to not be a Kahuna, but there's no one else to give the duties to.
  • Revenge Before Reason: Travis tends to like taking revenge before carrying out any orders, even if it gets in the way of said orders.
  • Relationship Ceiling: Serena is afraid that she and Ash have hit this in the Quietude oneshot. This is quickly proven wrong.
  • Relationship Compression: Sawyer and Miette's romantic relationship is developed quickly throughout Tribulations, rather than the whole series.
  • Relationship Upgrade: Ash and Serena become a couple at the end of Teamwork.
    • Clemont and Korrina follow in their footsteps at the end of Turbulence.
    • Brock and Aria achieve this at the end of Tomorrow
  • Resignations Not Accepted: DARC doesn't take kindly to Reeree's betrayal, going so far as to kill her.
  • Rivals Team Up: In the Alola Trilogy Ash and Gladion team up to battle Guzma, despite being being at odds with each other.
    • To a lesser extent, Clemont and Plumeria do this in Tomorrow when battling Louise.
  • Romantic Two-Girl Friendship: What Mimi and Reeree appear to have at times. As one reviewer put it: "a twisted version of Fondantshipping."
  • The Runner-Up Takes It All: Ash manages to receive an invitation to take on the Champion's League, despite not winning the Kalos League.
  • Rhymes on a Dime: Team Rocket, as per usual.
  • Sarcastic Clapping: Zinnia does this upon revealing herself to the participants of the Kalos Team Tournament.
  • Save the Villain: Ash attempts to save Dalton when he falls off the airship.
  • Savvy Guy, Energetic Girl: Clemont and Korrina.
  • Saying Too Much: During an Enemy Mine, James offhandedly refers to Jessie's career in Ceremonies. This leads Serena to realize that Jessilie is Jessie, though she doesn't mention this to the rest of the group.
  • Screams Like a Little Girl: Harrison "Harry" Kalas, when the Draconids attack.
  • Second Place Is for Losers: What Travis and Seamus think. Seamus grows out of it, but Travis never does.
  • Secret War: ARC vs. DARC. See Great Offscreen War
  • Self-Destructing Security: The radio station is filled with Electrode that explode after Ash and Co. infiltrate it.
  • Self-Fulfilling Prophecy: This is hinted to be what Michael has done. In his actions taken to save his world, Ash points out that he may as well have doomed it as a result. Just the same, by putting strife in their world, it's made them all the more powerful to defeat him.
  • Shipper on Deck: Bonnie, Dawn, Gary, May, and Brock all seem to want Ash and Serena to get together.
    • Extra points to Dawn, who admits that she had a crush on Ash for awhile, but had gotten over it by the end of the Sinnoh saga.
    • Bonnie also teases Lillie and Hau in much the same way as Ash and Serena.
    • Keoni's father is this for Keoni and Maka.
    • Brock, May, Clemont, and Serena all appear to be this for Max and Bonnie
  • Ship Tease: Astrid gets quite a bit with Rocky though it makes Rocky's death in Tomorrow all the more tragic, especially in the end when Astrid reveals that Rocky had actually proposed to her.
    • Alain and Mairin are no exception to this either, as even after the timeskip it's still ambiguous whether or not they're a couple
    • Kiawe and Mallow got some of this in the Alola Trilogy
    • Keoni and Maka have this starting in the one shot Fourths, Films, and Forgiveness
    • Max and Bonnie get a fair amount of this after the timeskip, with Brock even pointing out that they fight Like an Old Married Couple. They deny it.
    • Brock and Aria get plenty of this from Tribulations to the end when they become an Official Couple.
  • Signs of the End Times: All the events happening in Kalos are a sign that the world is slowly breaking apart.
    • Taken Up to Eleven in Tomorrow when it's revealed the world is dying.
  • Single-Target Sexuality: No matter how much Tierno flirts with her, Serena is single-mindedly in love with Ash.
  • Single Woman Seeks Good Man: Serena loves Ash because of his kindness and determination.
  • Sinister Surveillance: DARC makes use of this to find things through their Trevenant Network.
  • Sliding Scale of Anti-Villains: Zinnia comes off as a Woobie Anti-Villain; Dalton straddles the line between Noble and Well-Intentioned; Michael is the first to drop off the scale, while Lusamine continues it and IDEAL just makes it all the more complicated.
  • Small Name, Big Ego: Seamus and Travis, before they lose at the Kalos Team Tournament.
  • Smoke Out: Tau's Skuntank does this all too often.
  • Some Kind of Force Field: The Mark Omega has one of these by accident thanks to Rayquaza being connected to the Four Gates.
  • So Proud of You: Jack's final words to Ash are this: "You've become a wonderful Pokemon Master."
  • Sore Loser: Travis does not take losing well at all.
  • Spanner in the Works: Dalton perceives that Ash has done this in the past, and thus tries to preemtively remove him from the field. He still proves key to stopping Dalton's plan.
  • Spit Take: Serena has one upon seeing the news report that Ancien Castle was broken into.
  • Spotting the Thread: A suspicious Serena figures out Wulfric isn't Wulfric by mentioning how Ash's Noivern defeated Avalugg with Flamethrower. Wulfric agrees. Except Noivern didn't battle in Snowbelle, and certainly doesn't know Flamethrower.
  • Straight for the Commander: Serena heads straight to take Zinnia on from the beginning.
    • Ash does the same for Dalton in Turbulence.
  • Stress Vomit: Serena does this frequently throughout Tomorrow due to her pregnancy
  • Surprisingly Sudden Death: Reeree chooses to sacrifice herself for Serena in a split second.
  • Swiss Cheese Security: The League clearly has this considering that villainous forces manage to break through them, twice.
  • Take a Third Option: When Michael says the only options would be for Jack to try and carry the others away or let everyone die, Jack goes around it by having the Weapon fire on him...and only him.
  • Take That!: The Alola Trilogy takes numerous shots at the fact that the Sun and Moon anime is a departure from the usual travel format.
  • Talking Is a Free Action: The characters can sometimes have extended conversations, not throwing a punch until finished. Sometimes averted as well, however.
  • Taking the Bullet: Diantha does to protect her already dead Gardevoir's body which in turn leads to her death.
  • Tears of Fear: Rayquaza inspires this in anyone who sees it.
    • Everyone gets this when Yveltal hits the battlefield.
    • Bonnie has these she meets an alternative reality version of her brother Clime, and again when she's being tortured by a Latios in Tribulations.
  • Teeth-Clenched Teamwork: Most of the teams and Team Brutal during the Ancien Debacle.
    • Team Neo seems to have shades of this, particularly in their behavior towards Travis.
    • Plenty of the members of DARC can't stand each other, either.
    • Averted for IDEAL.
  • Terrible Trio: Downplayed. Team Rocket pop up throughout, but rarely create any actual problems.
    • In fact, they actually help out the heroes during the climax of Turbulence, as well as midway through Tribulations.
    • In Alola, they actually decide to cut back on attempting to steal the twerps' Pokemon, being satisfied to spy on them until things inevitably get heated up.
  • That Thing Is Not My Child!: Carl essentially feels this way about Travis, going to far as to have have his Kabutops gut him.
    • By contrast, Deidere freely admits she's the mother of Travis, but still feels he's a disappointment.
  • This Just In!: The news instantly reports on the League bombing right after it happens.
  • Throwing the Fight: Clemont, Alain and Mairin purposely lose their triple battle against Serena, Dawn and Astrid.
  • Time Bomb: The protagonists only have until the "flower" of the Weapon blooms before it destroys everything.
  • Time Skip: Several, over the course of the series:
    • A six-month gap between the end of the Kalos Trilogy and the beginning of the Alola Trilogy.
    • Seven years pass between the end of the main plot of the two trilogies and the epilogue of Tribulations.
    • One year passes between the wedding and the start of ''Tomorrow''.
  • Took a Level in Badass: Bonnie does this quite frequently.
    • Hau does this in "Broken Flowers, Healing Sunshine" when he replaces his grandfather Hala as Kahuna of Melemele Island and takes his place as one of the Alolan Elite Four.
    • In the final chapter of Ancienveres's "Tomorrow" Alain and Paul are elevated to members of the Elite Four of Kalos and Sinnoh respectively replacing Malva who replaces Diantha as Champion of Kalos after her death and Bertha's retirement.
  • Tournament Arc: The majority of Teamwork is this. Tribulations appears to be similar, only for the tournament to quickly fade in importance once DARC shows up. Alain even throws a match so he and the others can chase them.
  • Town with a Dark Secret: Played with, in that Nova Town has a dark secret with the Four Gates, only no one there actually knows about it.
  • Toxic Friend Influence: Seamus comes to realize that this is exactly what Travis is to him.
  • Tracking Device: Clemont places one on Merle.
  • Tragic Villain: Dalton has shades of this, given that he only wants peace but uses horrible means to achieve it and dies before he can see it come to pass.
  • Treacherous Advisor: Dalton to Seamus and Travis.
  • Troll: Bonnie. Most definitely Bonnie. If there's a chance to tease Ash and Serena/Clemont and Korrina/Hau and Lillie, and make them flustered or uncomfortable she's going to take it without hesitation. She takes this Up to Eleven during Love In the Time of Matrimony where she effectively blackmails Serena into letting her be a bridesmaid for her wedding where she had squishy steal the bouquet to pass it out evenly to Korrina for Clemont, Mairin for Alain, and Lillie for Hau. Even after Serena and Ash get married, Bonnie definitely pulls no punches on teasing them citing them as her favorite couple
  • True Companions: Ash, Serena, Clemont and Bonnie.
    • Team Nova (barring Travis) after "Teamwork" definitely qualify as this
    • A villainous example with IDEAL who are also a close knit group.
  • Turn Out Like His Father: Travis is really not all that different from Carl.
    • Tomorrow reveals that his mother is not much better.
  • The Unmasking: Reeree's cloak is burned and she flings it off revealing herself as a doppelganger of Serena.
    • Taken more literally with Mimi/ Miette, who takes off her facemask.
  • Utopia Justifies the Means: Dalton's aim is to create a more peaceful world despite his abhorrent methods.
  • Villainous Friendship: Reeree and Mimi seem to have this dynamic within DARC.
  • Villainous Rescue: The TRio save Clemont, Marin, and Alain from Cedric.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: Hau and Gladion eventually develop this dynamic, though Gladion is far more vitrolic than Hau, implied to be due to My Sister Is Off-Limits!.
    • Bonnie and the Rotomdex qualify for this aswell.
  • Waking Up Elsewhere: Ash awakens on Team Neo's airship after getting knocked out.
  • Walk on Water: Greninja easily does this during the third day's competition.
  • War Is Hell: And it shows by the end of Tribulations when each of the main characters has gone through heavy emotional development from loss.
  • The War Room: The Kalos Power Plant comes off as this with a big meeting between Diantha, Jack, Meyer and Sycamore.
  • Weaponized Landmark: The Weapon seems to just be some big rocks that are part of the landscape.
  • Well-Intentioned Replacement: Zoroark transforms into Merle to keep Dalton from grieving too much...and the lie only grows.
  • We Used to Be Friends: Seamus and Travis, to an extent.
    • Played straight with Jack and Michael.
    • As well as Kukui and Guzma.
  • We Would Have Told You, But...: Dalton doesn't tell Seamus that Merle is dead to spare him the pain.
  • Wham Episode: Trials chapter 24. Lillie, Gladion, and Lusamine are revealed to be family, the Aether Foundation is revealed to be working with Team Skull, as is Gladion, Lillie is taken by Team Skull.
    • Chapter 20 and 21 of Tomorrow reveals that the Deidere that appeared throughout the story was an illusion the entire time, and that the real Deidere is bound to a wheelchair.
  • Wham Line: "My daughter, Merle, died three years ago off the coast of Monsu Island in Hoenn."
    • "The one who set Lusamine on her path was the vice president of the League at the time, a man named Michael."
    • "It was never real. The meteonite and myself have been in Ancien City from the very beginning."
  • White and Grey Morality: While Ash and the other protagonists are very firmly on the right side of things, both Zinnia and Dalton aren't quite evil, only looking to attain things to soothe the pain they have.
  • Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?: Downplayed; one of the Team Tournament challenges involves Plusle and Minun, and Dawn (who had a fear of them due to an Embarrassing Nickname) is taking part. Ash notes that she seems a bit stiff, but is otherwise fine.
  • Tears of Joy: Ash sheds these in the finale of Ancienverse when Serena tells him that she's pregnant with their first child.
  • The Worf Effect: Alain's Mega Charizard X, one of the strongest non-Legendaries in the series, whom even Ash-Greninja couldn't defeat, is easily beaten by Cedric's Mega Swampert.
  • World Limited to the Plot: Appears this way in ''Teamwork" due to only those characters at the Kalos Team Tournament getting involved. Averted in the sequels.
  • Would Hurt a Child: Carl has no issues with having Latios Mind Rape Bonnie in order to pressure President Goodshow into revealing the location of the Ultimate Weapon.
  • Worthy Opponent: Dalton comes to consider Ash this after their final clash on the Mark Omega.
    • Deirdre very much considers Ash this.
  • You Can't Thwart Stage One: Clemont's group is unable to prevent Team Neo from obtaining the Scroll of Secrets and Gurkinn's Keystone.
    • The group, even with reinforcements, is unable to stop Lusamine and Guzma from escaping into Ultra Space.
    • DARC's goal to reactivate the Ultimate Weapon pretty much goes as they planned it to, with only a few minor bumps.
  • You Remind Me of X: Zinnia tells Ash that he reminds her of Aster.
  • Zettai Ryouiki: Type A on Serena, as in the anime. Averted with her Alolan outfit.

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