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Fanfic / Pedestal

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You know what? Life sucks. I've been training for about four years now, and I've seen a whole lot of crap. I've got scars from poison ivy, half-resolved neurosis about water, I've been beaten by more Pokemon than I can frankly remember, I've had holy water thrown at me, I've had to cross-dress more times than I'd admit to in other circumstances...still, I've had bad luck since I can remember. It wears on you. This big stuff is...different. You can ignore it or you can fight against it. Either way — life sucks.

Pedestal is a Pokémon fanfic that starts out deceptively similar to other stories. A young trainer aspires To Be a Master, with great dreams of being the best, placing his hoped-for Pokemon on a pedestal. A year later than most trainers, he finally receives his starter... And it's a Numel. Hilarity Ensues, but not for long.

It later becomes Darker and Edgier than the games, with heavy deconstruction of prophecies deciding fates and the general theme of chosen ones, and the consequences of ignoring warnings. However, it still has moments of comedy.


This fanfic contains examples of:

  • Aborted Arc: What ever happened to that red jacket...?
    • Word of God states the jacket would have gone to a planned cross-over.
  • Accidental Aiming Skills: The protagonist is pro at this - especially when trying to catch birds.
  • Accidental Misnaming: The Author Avatar eventually starts to refer to the protagonist as NamNar too, leading to this gem in chapter 94.
    "NamNar, c'mere."
    "Uh, who?"
    "You, silly."
    "That's not my name. My name is—"
    "Ach! No, none of that yet."
  • Action Girl: Carlita.
    • Ultimately, Hanna. Her secret weapon lays waste to Nick's team, and she even beats Nick himself in a fistfight.
  • Action Survivor: It's a wonder that the protagonist is still alive at this point, especially after being mauled by Pokemon (and people!) so many times.
  • A Day in the Limelight: Both Hanna and Nick have one.
  • All Girls Want Bad Boys: Harlan has a massive crush on the moody feline that is Ike, to the point of choosing the go with the main character after Nick dies to stay close to him.
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  • Alluring Anglerfish: Most ghosts do this at some point.
  • An Arm and a Leg: Carlita's tail gets chopped off during the battle with Nick.
  • Anti-Air: Ike was meant to be this, but Kostya and Alice are used, more often than not - mostly because the protagonist doesn't believe Ike can be trusted.
  • Arc Words: You will face many trials. Do not let yourself become dark. Do not get sidetracked with the injustices of the world; do not become angry and bitter. And, when the time comes, let go.
    • However, the full text was interrupted; it first ran 'And, when the time comes, let go of h—'.
  • Artificial Limbs: Carlita gets fitted with an artiftical tail after the events of the final fight. However, even with the new limb her doctors find it unlikely that she'll ever dance again.
  • Back for the Finale: Jude makes an appearance for Oonu's funeral in the final chapter.
  • Battle Amongst the Flames: The main character has been involved in four so far
    • The first is when he breaks out of the warehouse during The Tournament arc.
    • The second is when he faces Vaporeon in Sunyshore
    • The third and fourth come in quick succession during the Stark Mountain battle. First he faces down Lola just outside Stark Mountain, and then he battles Nick deep within the heart of the mountain.
  • Best Served Cold: Hanna seems to have spent an awful long time training up Molly to kill Nick.
    "Look, if you're worried about me, really. Don't. I've been preparing this for years."
  • Big Damn Heroes: Interestingly, two examples in The Tournament arc: inverted when the protagonist busts out of the building to save people, and when the main antagonist, Nick, shows up and kills his own followers to stop the fighting and probably save them from a very bloody Curb-Stomp Battle.
    • Lucian at the very end of the Vaporeon Arc.
    • Sela and Vaikuntha tend to become this from time to time, such as being part of The Cavalry who arrives to assist the protagonist's team at the battle of Stark Mountain.
  • Big Sleep: Nick's death at the hands of Arceus.
    Then, he shut his eyes tight and leaned against Chase, just as the white pokémon leaned down and pressed the tip of its snout against the dragon's forehead.
  • Blood-Splattered Innocents: The main character, although how innocent he is at this point in the story is debatable. And more often than not, it's his own blood. Later a much straighter example occur with Cossette.
  • Broken Pedestal: The plot and much of the character interactions later in the story thrive off of this trope.
  • Butt-Monkey: The protagonist. Let's face it, life for him isn't exactly peachy.
  • Cerebus Syndrome: It starts off as a cheerful, humorous story about a trainer starting his Pokemon journey, but soon there's more blood than Pokemon battles. It got worse from there.
  • Character Title: Pedestal being Des's full name.
  • Chekhov's Gunman: Lola. She has an Early-Bird Cameo when the main characters journey to Snowpoint, and while she gets more focus during the tournament and gym race arcs the most pivotal moment she's involved in is being killed on national televison. Much later, it's revealed that her murder was a sham, and she's had a hand in almost all the obstacles the main character has had to face in the story so far - such as being the driving force behind Nick's worsening Sanity Slippage, the organiser of the nightmare attacks, and being one who goaded the main character into attacking Vaporeon by sending messages from Nick's number. She's also manipulated many events in the protagonists life from behind the scenes, such as fixing the tournament so that they'd achieve a gym position and covering up their involvement in Nick's prison break. Finally she's 'the first' in the ghosts' prophecy...
  • Climactic Battle Resurrection: A minor one happened during the battle against Vaporeon, where nearly everyone except for the main character and his group get killed. The battle on Stark Mountain is also this, as everyone except the main character, Lola and Nick get taken out of action pretty quickly once the fighting starts proper.
  • Coming-of-Age Story: The story starts off technically when the protagonist is ten. Five years so far have passed.
  • Conflicting Loyalty: During the final arc, the main character is torn between desperately believing that Nick can be saved and taking him out for the safety of the region.
  • Cosmic Plaything: Implied ever since Arceus had a cameo. Later chapters confirm this trope is in effect, but also reveal that the MC that's the plaything - it's Abigail and Nick.
  • Convection Schmonvection: Zigzagged. In Stark Mountain characters wearing dark clothing are shown to be extremely uncomfortable and non-fire pokemon have a hard time battling for long periods due to the heat. However, a rickety Rope Bridge can somehow stand over a pool of lava without bursting into flames...
  • Creator Cameo: Chapter 94.
  • Curse Cut Short: Fairly often, although more and more in recent chapters due to the rating going up.
    • Chapter 121 starts off with a "Holy freaking sh—", the first time the protagonist has resorted to such language.
  • Cynicism Catalyst: A dead little brother was the catalyst for Nick's Freak Out.
  • Dance Battler: Carlita to a T. Events which occur during the final battle put an end to her dancing days. Without her tail, the doctors aren't even sure she'll be able to manage a slow waltz.
  • Dark Is Evil: The dark-haired trainer turned out to be Nick, and we find that out just before his Freak Out. He has also been stated to wear dark clothes from then on out.
    • In Chapter 147, it is implied that the dark-haired monster might actually be Lola.
  • Dark Is Not Evil: Rather, ghost types aren't evil. Mostly.
  • Darker and Edgier: Compared to most original trainer pokemon fics out there.
  • Death by Origin Story: Benjamin's mother was executed for being in Team Galactic. His father is in prison for life.
    • Abigail, the first person to undergo Arceus's test, is the first person to fall victim to the rabid Abomasnow
  • Died in Your Arms Tonight: The mercenary's girlfriend, Zoe, dies this way after being shot by Vaporeon.
  • Disguised in Drag: The protagonist cross-dresses as a girl in order to get past border control. He later swaps outfits with another girl in order to escape from Sunyshore Gym.
  • Early-Bird Cameo: Lola gets introduced way back when the main character and Hanna first visited Snowpoint City, and only pops up again during The Tournament arc. Also, the Electabuzz that the main character owned for all of 10 minutes comes back later with a more important role, as one of Lola's pokemon.
  • Enemy Mine: The protagonist teams up with the mercenary who attacked him early on in the story in order to infiltrate Vaporeon's hideout. He gets betrayed, as some of his friends suspected he would.
  • Even The Boys Want Him: Nick, the protagonist.
  • Eye Scream: Ike is blinded after getting his eyes slashed during the final battle.
  • Expecting Someone Taller: Sela Schaffer states this when she realizes who the protagonist is during the Gym Race arc.
    • "Well, no, but—look at him! He's famous! And he's so tiny! I thought he'd be bigger. He looked bigger on the television."
  • Failure Is the Only Option: The only way for the story to end peacefully at this point is if Nick goes to jail or dies. Considering the protagonist's feelings towards him and the fact that he already bailed him out of prison once before...
    • He dies. Via Arceus.
  • Famed in Story: Played straight with the protagonist, though it's an unfortunate thing as it could reveal his friendship with Nick.
  • Vaporeon is a TV celebrity and Arianna seems to be pretty well known in fashion circles, if Hanna's reaction is anything to go by.
  • Fangirl: Implied with Hanna's remark in chapter 16. She has also been shown to root for the protagonist and Alicia's relationship, even going as far as to help him out.
    • Cossette, to an extent.
  • Featureless Protagonist: The protagonist can be seen as this, sometimes. Not any more! Now we have his full name, gender and several pieces of art by the author to give us an idea of his appearance! So what if it took 150+ chapters?
  • Five Stages of Grief: In chapter 151, the protagonist's messages to Nick each seem to be one of these stages, albeit out of order; the first is bargaining (begging Nick to pick up), the second is depression, the third is anger, the fourth is denial (thinking Nick had a reason or explanation), and the fifth seems to be a rather broken acceptance.
  • Flat "What": Nick's reaction to hearing that Matthew is dead. Possibly deconstructed, given the circumstances and description of how flat the word was.
  • Four Is Death: There are four Pidgey chicks when the main character adopts them. Is it that surprising that not all of them make it? Poor Oonu and Woonu...
    • Also, the time Nick goes through Victory Road when his Rhyhorn nearly dies, and he releases his Froslass because it wouldn't kill is stated to be the fourth time, many chapters before it's revealed this all happened.
    • In a more comedic example, the protagonist is deeply afraid of the fourth gym in the traditional circuit, Crasher Wake's, because his Water type is double super effective against the protagonist's starter.
  • Freak Out: Nick suffers a HUGE one. The rest of the story after that point follows the protagonist, and the rest of the region, struggling to deal with the fallout from it.
    • Most of Sunyshore and the remaining Gym race trainers suffer one during the media attack.
    • Benjamin has one after he kills someone for the first time.
  • Fluffy the Terrible: The Tyranitar that Hanna uses against Nick is called Molly.
  • Full-Name Basis: At the point of her introduction, it was almost exclusively Sela Schaffer. More and more, it's Nick or Nicholas Sayre, too.
  • Grey-and-Gray Morality: The main villain only snapped and killed in revenge of his little brother's death because the government did absolutely nothing about it, even when it happened before (and to the main character!). Many characters have voiced sentiments agreeing with his basic ideals, even if he took things too far.
    "Not to mention the fact that when you get to be this high in the world, especially in today's training climate, we're all about five minutes from pulling a Nick Sayre."
    "No we're—"
    "I don't know where you were, but I was in Sunyshore fighting off trainers and Pokemon with my goddamn fists when that riot broke out. You were all fighting tooth and nail against each other. And judging on your Luxray's behavior, you're not a perfectly innocent trainer, either," she snapped, cold once more. I reeled back, caught off guard by the personality change. "The fact of the matter is that each and every one of us has the potential to turn just as bad, if not worse, than he is. All it takes is the proper trigger. For him, it was Matthew."
    • Although he now has followers who completely agree with him, possibly more than he himself agrees.
    • The 'good guys' also have done horrible things. The main character himself has killed a Pokemon, is more keen on stopping his ex-best friend instead of his fanatical followers, Shadow Sneaked an entire camera crew to who knows where and never bothered to care about where they potentially ended up, may or may not have been indirectly responsible for the deaths of at least eight Pokemon, and, of course, could very well be responsible for Nick becoming a monster and causing the rest of the tragedies, anyway.
  • Groin Attack: Hanna uses one during her fistfight with Nick.
  • Heroic Self-Deprecation: The main character, more and more as the story wears on.
    • Lampshaded by Arceus, of all things.
    "...even if some of its members can be slightly self-depreciating at times."
  • Highly Visible Ninja: Keith, since much of his early appearances involve his participation in an event on national television.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: Vai gets stabbed with one of Koel's feathers.
  • Hold Your Hippogriffs: Any time a real-world idiom that references an animal is used, the appropriate Pokemon is substituted.
  • Holy Hand Grenade: Arceus is more or less used as a willing weapon.
  • I'm a Humanitarian: Several lines of ghosts, most notably the Duskull line, have been stated to eat humans as part of their diet. Dusclops can speak in human tongue specifically to lure children to them. Kostya just evolved, and he suddenly doesn't need his translator anymore.
  • Insane Troll Logic: The people who attempt to follow in Nick's footsteps believe that, if any member of your Pokémon team is the same as any that Nick has, or the same as one of the names taken on by the people who ran the Tournament, you're instantly on their side. They do lampshade this by claiming it's definitely not a foolproof method, and they only seem to believe it for certain if you have at least three of the same Pokémon (though one or two still puts you on their radar), but still.
    • Slightly justified in that those particular Pokémon aren't too common, and after Nick's attempted slaughter of the Champion, publicly owning one of those Pokémon does make you suspicious in general. Then again, this just means that if you aren't completely clued in, or if you had the misfortune of owning a Garchomp or Flygon or Houndoom before all this started, you're going to be under suspicion and possibly hunted down for no reason. Certainly happened to Vaikuntha and Benjamin.
  • I Can Still Fight!: Carlita quotes this as she desperately tries to stop the main character from recalling her after her tail gets cut off.
    "I can still fight! I—I'm not bleeding anymore, see?"
  • Idiot Hair: The protagonist has one in pictures drawn by the author.
  • I Have Your Wife: Happens a lot. The cops keep Benjamin with them in order to draw out his parents, who were members of Team Galactic, after they started an armed siege when the organization fell. Vaporeon holds the mercenary's girlfriend hostage in order to ensure his loyalty. Lola does this to Alicia to get the the main character's side to withdraw their pokemon during a battle. Finally, Nick's family was held hostage to get him to hand himself in to the authorities.
  • Incompatible Orientation: Archie and Alicia, and their respective relationships with the protagonist.
  • Important Haircut: Cynthia cuts her hair short after the Champions Tragedy.
    • During the Gym race, Hanna cut her hair, too.
  • Improbable Weapon: Skarmory feathers have become an increasingly popular alternative to swords.
  • In the Back: Lola stabs Vai this way during the chaos of the Stark Mountain battle.
  • Innocent Blue Eyes: The protagonist has them. During the story's finale, they play an essential part in convincing a delusional Nick that he's not his brother.
    Those big blue eyes, so wide, so trusting, so confused.
  • Intergenerational Friendship: Nick is quite a bit older than the protagonist and even Hanna. This is somewhat the norm for the protagonist considering Benjamin and Cossette are the characters he strikes up a friendship with who are younger him.
  • Ironic Episode Title: "It Is Cruelty To Be Humane To Rebels" in the chapter where Stantler and Houndoom are murdered, "Sweet Dreams Are Made Of This" for the nightmare chapter, "A Horizon To Catch Up To" for the protagonist's Moral Event Horizon, and many others.
  • Jade-Colored Glasses: Definitely in place on our protagonist, especially considering that most recently, he has been more worried about where to put the bodies and actively wished for Vaporeon's death.
  • Karma Houdini: Depending on whether or not you believe she was lying, Lola qualifies. If she was telling the truth, she masterminded at least most of the major plot points and was even behind several deaths, albeit indirectly. And while she dies, she wanted to die. She died happily, knowing she was able to get one last, great rise out of the protagonist. Aside from some mild injuries, she didn't suffer any sort of karma.
  • Karmic Twist Ending: Arguably, most of the ghosts' warning turns out to have this to some degree. The protagonist was effectively put on trial by the public during the Gym race arc, he purposely was out trying to become as dark as possible to avoid psychic locks, he's been nothing but sidetracked to the point that Arceus had to drop in on his dreams to try to set him back on track, his personality has become much more cynical and distant, and he still hasn't let go of Nick. The real kicker is that he is even aware of the last one, and simply is unable to. The only part of the prophecy that's been completely played straight so far is that they told him not to die - but it's unknown whether that was the ghosts' attempt at humor or honestly a part of the warning.
  • Kid Hero: The protagonist brings peace to the region at the tender age of 15.
  • Living Shadow: Kostya and Pollyanna take this form regularly - but subverted a bit in that that's not their real form.
  • Madness Mantra: Nick has one when he's in jail.
    "…I want to be alone, I want to be alone…"
  • Arguably, what the ghosts and even Arceus have been hinting at all along.
  • Nameless Narrative: We (and the author) call him NamNar, short for the Nameless Narrator, since his name is never revealed during the course of the story. The author keeps the protagonist's gender unknown for half the story. The protagonist's name is literally the last two words of the story.
  • Never Got to Say Goodbye: Des to Isabella, NamNar to Woonu, NamNar to Archie, NamNar to Lola... And most recently, NamNar to Nick.
  • Pragmatic Adaptation: In this 'verse, you can buy Pokemon translators that let you understand your Pokemon.
  • Properly Paranoid: Well, Des is weak against water...
    • Likewise, Vaikuntha won't let Koel fight fire Pokemon.
  • Real Men Eat Meat: Partially subverted, in the fact that the protagonist fought with vegetarianism and killing Pokemon for food. He went back to eating them, however.
  • Rival Turned Evil: Fuels all of the conflict in the later parts of the story.
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge: Nick storms the Elite Four Headquarters and slaughters Cynthia's entire team, after his brother dies due to government inaction.
  • Screw Destiny: Played straight, subverted, inverted, and all around just screwed around with to the point where even the cast isn't sure what would be screwing destiny and whether or not anything they've done counts as it.
  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: Jude ditches the main character after his What the Hell, Hero? moment at the end of the Vaporeon arc. The main character does this when he quits being a gym leader after the events at Stark Mountain, and again when he essentially walks away from the champion position in the epilogue.
  • Smitten Teenage Girl: Hanna towards Nick in the first half of the story. Gender bent with the protagonist towards Alicia in the second half.
    • Cossette counts as a smitten preteen girl towards the protagonist.
  • Partially subverted in the fact that the protagonist refuses to see his parents' pride in him, instead concentrating on their constant worry.
  • Stay in the Kitchen: The main character bans Hanna and Cossette from coming with him to face Nick. This is justified though, as he thinks Hanna doesn't have any pokemon and Cossette has next to no battle experience and only has a crippled Gallade to rely on. This doesn't dissuade them in the least.
  • Stepford Smiler: Carlita shows signs of this when the main character tells her she can't dance.
    I couldn't decide whether or not she was forcing herself to be cheerful.
  • Stock Ninja Weaponry: Keith has enough hidden knives for any situation. His preference for using poison type Pokemon may also qualify.
  • Stranger Safety: The Pokemon universe thrives off of this, and our hero is no exception.
  • Stunned Silence: Carlita, after the main character tells her that she can't dance any more.
    "Carlita, you won't be able to dance again."
    She was perfectly silent.
  • Talking Your Way Out: The main character orders his pokemon to do this in order to convert some hostile pokemon to their side. Probably would've worked better if they weren't in the middle of a raging battle at the time...
    Alice: "You want me to go and talk to a hostile Garchomp?"
  • Tempting Fate: The protagonist tries to actively avoid doing this by the second half of the story, for what little good it does him.
  • The All-Concealing "I": There are more than 150 chapters at this point and we still don't know the narrator's name.
  • The Bus Came Back: For Hanna at the end of the Vaporeon arc.
  • The Cavalry: Played straight for both sides during the battle with Lola on Stark Mountain.
    Sela: "Looks like I'm playing cavalry again, huh?"
  • The Cheerleader: Hanna doesn't lampshade it; she proclaims it, drags others along with her, and even dresses for the part.
  • The Reveal: The narrator's name is finally revealed at the end of chapter 159.
  • The Runaway: Cossette is implied to have run away from home after having an argument with her parents shortly after the main character moves to Sunyshore, and is currently living with him in the gym.
  • The Starscream: Ike detests being made a trainer's pokemon, and for the first part of the story actively looks for ways to undermine the main character. He gradually grows out of this as the story progresses.
  • Theme Naming: Jude plays this straight with the pokemon he breeds, though some of the themes he pictures are a little obscure. For example Eevee litter Isabella and Alexander came from all had four-syllable names that started with vowels.
  • Title Drop: The main character drops one during his confrontation with Nick.
    "But I'm finally going to fix that, one way or another. I'm taking you down off of that pedestal, Nick. And if I have to kill you to do that, to keep Sinnoh safe from you, I will."
  • Tomato Surprise: The dark-haired trainer turning out to be Nick, for the protagonist at least.
    • The black hoodie-wearing trainer turning out to be Lola.
  • Two Guys and a Girl: The protagonist, Nick and Lola were this for a short while.
    • This dynamic occurs again Gym race arc, with the introductions of Vaikuntha and Alicia.
    • Possibly Des, Carlita, and Ike, and then later Kostya, Alice, and Zarek.
    • The Pidgey chicks were for awhile.
  • Unlikely Hero: When they first started out on his journey, nobody would have pegged the protagonist as being the one who'd eventually bring peace to the region.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: NICK. He murdered Hanna's team to stop the protagonist from getting too involved with him.
  • We Named the Monkey "Jack":
    "Guys, no. I want to name them! And Des—Vai, really?"
    "No, Vi. It's said differently. And uses different letters," he replied smartly.
    "I still will get confused and I'm the one deciding what to name them!"
    Three guesses as to what they ended up being named.
  • We Used to Be Friends: Boy is this drilled home during the confrontation between the main character and Nick.
    NamNar: "I thought you were my friend. I thought you were still... Good, somewhere, in there."
  • Wham Episode: In the first half, there was much speculation as to where the plot was going. Chapter 57 promptly destroyed that.
    • Chapter 132, as well.
  • Wham Line: Chapter 121: "Des. Kill it."
    • Chapter 147: "I've missed you so much, Matthew."
    • The meaning of these words: "Let go."
    • Chapter 156 is full of them. The most jarring would have to be "...A slow waltz, perhaps," and "...he won't be able to see again."
  • What the Hell, Hero?: Pedestal gives an absolutely epic one to the protagonist. It snaps him out of his mindset.
    • Again: "Des. Kill it."
    • And again: the protagonist DID just murder someone in relatively cold blood. And is then more or less rewarded for it, and at the very least, forgiven by most of the cast.
    • Jude also gives one the the main character, complete with a punch to the face, after his attempts to team up with the mercenary in the Vaporeon arc go pear shaped.
  • Would Hit a Girl: The protagonist smacks Lola with a Skarmory feather to shut her up while confronting Nick.
    "What. I'm not afraid to hit a girl, and she's been infuriating and awful this entire night."
    • The protagonist also slaps Hanna. To be fair, she started it.
  • Writers Cannot Do Math: The poll to announce the public's predictions for the winner of the gym race is as follows: 17% for Lola, 15% for the race being cancelled, 13% for Vaikuntha, 10% for Sela, 8% for Keith, another 8% for the protagonist, 5% for Archie, 3% for Alicia, and another 3% for Benjamin. This adds up to a total of 82%, so apparently 18% of voters were not counted.
  • You Are Not Alone: Hanna lectures the main character about this after he tries to talk her down from killing Nick.
    "You do not have to bear the weight of the world on your shoulders, contrary to popular belief. I am here to help you."
  • You Can't Fight Fate: The protagonist doesn't realize what he's supposed to do until it's too late, failing to avert the horrible future

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