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The Sun Soul is a Pokemon fanfic written by 50calliberchaos.

A Darker and Edgier take on Pokémon, this fic chronicles the journey of Ash Ketchum in a more realistic, dangerous Pokémon world where death and corruption are rife. Pokémon are dangerous enough that one red Gyarados can wipe out an entire town, science has focused mainly on researching Pokémon, leading to very advanced medicine but relatively little in terms of computers, transport etc, transportation is mainly on foot/per Pokémon (with cars being right out, even in the core region) and there being an actual frontier to human civilization.

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The story follows Ash Ketchum, but not as we know him from the anime. An early experience with Pokémon in his childhood teaches him to respect Pokémon for the dangerous nature they possess, a lesson that stays with him throughout the rest of the story. With his traveling companion Misty, a girl with a mysterious past, Ash attempts to get to the bottom of why Team Rocket are occupying Mt. Moon and trying to enter Cerulean Cave. Along the way he meets Bill the scientist, a reclusive inventor, Dawn, a fellow trainer with whom he shares a mysterious connection, Jesse and James, who are constantly at odds with Ash and Misty, and the ever manipulative Mewtwo. Warning: character deaths, violence, and gore ahead.

Now has a sequel, Foundations of the World, following May and Wallace as May's attempt to reclaim the throne of Hoenn draws her into a vicious civil war against Teams Magma and Aqua.

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  • Anyone Can Die: A lot of characters, both people and Pokemon, die in this fic, so we'll just list the plot-relevant ones. The entire population of Pallet Town – minus Ash and Oak, but including Delia –, Cade, Misty's Staryu, Violet, Ash's Fearow, Johanna, Jessie's Charizard, Fey, and Lt. Surge. This is just from the pre-Time Skip chapters.
  • Armor Is Useless:
    • Averted big time. Throughout the story armor is shown to be a main reason the heroes are still alive. The battle for Celadon specifically shows that one of the things that makes the event horrific is how long soldiers have to beat on each other just to get through their opponent's armor.
    • Misty's death is due in large part to her opting out of wearing armor.
    • On Cinnabar, Ash's armor saves his life when the specially designed heat-shielding in the suit saves him from a Salamence's breath weapon.
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  • Artistic License – Economics: Invoked in-universe. The people of Celadon city see nothing wrong with paying for timber, iron, ect., with money that they print (while exporting next to nothing). As Erika points out, this is a very bad idea.
  • Deadline News: During the Johto/Cinnabar War, a cameraman is killed by an attacking Gyarados.
  • Deconstruction Fic: The whole fic is essentially an examination of how dangerous a realistic Pokemon universe would be.
  • Determinator: Ash embodies determination. Even by the end of the Vermilion arc, you'll wonder how someone can endure that kind of punishment. By the end of the Celadon and Saffron arcs, you'll wonder how anyone can function as a person after what he's been through.
  • Expy: By the author's admission, Bill is based off Mordin Solus.
  • False Flag Operation: Soldiers from Orre attempt to smuggle the Ocean Spirit away from Hoenn in a ship displaying Team Aqua sigils, to direct the region's forces to Team Aqua as a distraction.
  • Fantasy Gun Control: It's mentioned that gunpowder weapons were experimented with, but were found to be too inefficient as well as frightening the trainers' Pokemon.
  • Freudian Excuse: Koga had to watch his wife slowly waste away from Huntington's. Upon realizing that his daughter Janine had it as well, and would die even younger then her mother, he turned to Team Rocket for help.
  • Friend to All Living Things: Ash seems to command an unusual amount of respect from Pokemon he catches or commands, and they seem to intuitively understand his orders. Most notable with Blastoise, who is described by Misty as rather dense, stubborn, and tactically disinclined, but under Ash's command suddenly understands completely new tactics and obeys without hesitation.
  • From Bad to Worse: Ash goes from losing his entire hometown, his mother, and entire childhood in a night to being thrown into a continent-spanning conspiracy that culminates in him being stabbed, thrown off waterfalls, attacked by Jesse and James over and over, and generally nearly killed on a fairly regular basis. Oh, and then Misty, his lover, is brutally murdered in a battle he insisted they fight. Not to mention Pikachu gets killed as well. And then Professor Oak
  • Goddamned Bats: Invoked Agatha is overwhelmed by every single Zubat from Victory Road attacking at once.
  • Gut Feeling: Savant powers manifest as an intuitive sense of exactly what needs to be done. At one point Bill tells Ash he should listen to his little thoughts that come from nowhere, because they're right.
  • Heroic BSoD: Ash suffers one when Fearow dies and he thinks Misty has died as well. He has a far worse one when Misty actually does die.
  • Heroic Neutral: Sabrina is cares about Saffron's well-being above all else, and any friends of Saffron are friends of hers. Even if they are trying to kill each other.
  • The High King: Hoenn used to have a High King, with the title passing between the various royal families to avoid a concentration of power. This system collapsed into civil war when May's father Norman refused to give up the throne to Wallace's grandmother as required.
  • I Thought Everyone Could Do That: Misty expresses surprise that Ash can bond with and control Pokemon on a level that shouldn't be possible; on numerous occasions she observes that Ash performs actions with just-caught Pokemon that would have left anyone else dead. Ash is completely unaware of this until he gets told he's a savant.
  • Kill All Humans: Mewtwo plans on wiping out humanity with an army of Pokémon.
  • Lamarck Was Right: Apparently being around a specific type of Pokemon can, over generations, cause humans to take on the aspects of that type of Pokemon. Then there are savants, who attune with Pokemon in general.
  • The Lost Woods: Viridian Forest. At a certain point, the canopy covers the sky completely, not letting any light in. The air becomes completely still. The temperature drops sharply in certain areas. The trail gets ever narrower, making it easy to get lost. And God help you if you stumble upon a silky white pod or a clearing full of them... Even the Indigo Plateau Rangers, some of the toughest survivalists Kanto has to offer, aren't safe, as Ash and Misty eventually find out.
  • Nothing Personal: Stated word-for-word by Ash when he kills the Celadon security guard that stumbled on him and Pikachu when they were raiding for papers in Chapter 21.
  • Obfuscating Stupidity: When in public, Jessie and James act pretty similar to their canon counterparts, i.e. hapless, dumb, and goofy.
  • Physical God: Ash, after gaining Mewtwo's powers. He can control even the three Legendary Birds.
  • Poke in the Third Eye: As in the games, the Blue and Red Orbs provide a conduit to the minds of Kyogre and Groudon respectively. However, accessing the minds of such powerful Legendary Pokémon allows them to respond, and even being near the orbs quickly erodes the mind of even a savant.
  • Reality Ensues: Cabe the Bug catcher pulls out a knife that Ash stabbed into him, only for it to cause the bleeding to get a lot worse.
  • Red Shirt: Tends to be averted. Regular joes wear armor and carry weapons that are no more or less deadly than what the heroes get. Pokémon notwithstanding, everyone is on pretty equal ground, which is, of course, what sets the heroes apart.
  • Shoot the Messenger: During the battle of Celadon, Brock, who is leading Celadon's forces, is warned by an enemy messenger that if they do not surrender, then there will be no quarter given. Brock responds by riding forward, shouting "IF!" and ordering his archers to attack. It does not end well for the messenger.
  • The Reveal: Misty was once part of Team Rocket.
  • Time Skip: The fic goes a year ahead in time after Ash becomes Gym Leader of Vermillion City.
  • Took a Level in Badass: Every single character compared to their canon counteparts, due to the much more dangerous world they live in, but special mention goes to Jessie and James, who went from jokes to outright menaces.
  • Unreliable Narrator: Both Kasumi and Misty give conflicting stories about Misty's past, with no indication of who's telling the truth.
  • We Can Rule Together:
    • Jessie and James give Ash a job offer when they first meet. To their credit, they hadn't done anything evil on screen yet.
  • Mewtwo offers Ash a place in his post-mankind world for being a savant and his service. Ash replies by throwing the Master Ball at it.
  • With This Herring: When Ash and Misty first set out, they're given body armor by Professor Oak, which was rather crappy, but did the job well enough. This is due in part to the fact that Oak barely had any resources to scrape together considering Pallet Town was destroyed. When they get to Bill, he gives them two very nice sets of armor which Brock says even the Elite Four would like, which Ash reasons is because the Pokedex cataloging mission they're on is incredibly dangerous and it would only make sense for them to receive such high-end gear. In addition to the armor, Bill replenishes their supplies of rations, anti-toxins, gear, etc. and parts with a joke about how they're draining what he has.
  • You Kill It, You Bought It: Ash becoming Vermillion Gym Leader, though he didn't do the deed himself. It's noted that it only worked due to extenuating circumstances.

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