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Fanfic / The (Edit) War for Ash’s Freedom to not be Betrayed

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The (Edit) War for Ash’s Freedom to not be Betrayed is a Pokémon one-shot fic co-written by Crossoverpairinglover (the writer of Pokémon Reset Bloodlines) and AceAmir. It can be found here.

One day in the Hall of Origins, Arceus discovers an intruder trying to tamper with the Book of Fate. The intruder, Darkern Edgier, wants to turn Ash into a "true" Pokemon Trainer by — like many an "edgy" fanfic writer — having all his loved ones betray him and putting him through all sorts of gruesome torment. Arceus, however, is having none of it. Thus, the titular edit war begins, with Darkern trying to make his fantasy a reality and Arceus trying to keep things the way they are. Who will come out on top?

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This fanfic contains examples of:

  • Aesop Amnesia: Having learned nothing from his tussle with Arceus, Darkern tries to apply his philosophy to the My Little Pony universe. This ends poorly for him.
  • Age Lift: Everyone gets this when Arceus unfreezes the Floating Timeline, though the impact differs between people affected.
  • All for Nothing: Darkern was never editing the canon universe, so even if he'd gone through with everything he'd wanted, the anime would've remained unchanged.
  • All-Loving Hero: Darkern wants to erase this part of Ash's personality, and doesn't see the point of him helping out Professor Oak just because he can.
  • Author Appeal: Ash ends up with a harem at the end. This being written by the author of Pokemon Reset Bloodlines, this is hardly a surprise.
  • Betrayal Fic: The story parodies this sub-genre of fanfics.
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  • Beyond the Impossible: Entry into the Hall of Origins is nigh-impossible, but Darkern managed to do it anyways.
  • Big "NO!": Darkern lets one out after learning his plan was All for Nothing.
  • Caught Monologuing: Happens to Darkern quite a few times; he becomes so caught up in ranting about what he plans to do when he starts his latest edit of the Book he gives Arceus the chance to make a more suitable edit.
  • Cliché Storm: In-Universe, this is what Darkern wants to turn the anime into.
  • Color-Coded for Your Convenience: Darkern's entries in the Book of Fate are red, while Arceus' are blue.
  • *Cough* Snark *Cough*: When Darkern implies that all of Ash's adventures have ended in failure, Arceus does something to this effect, mentioning the Orange Islands and the Battle Frontier.
  • Crossover Punchline: The fic ends with Darkern getting turned into a decorative statue by Twilight Sparkle and her friends.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: Ash delivers a few over the course of the fic.
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    • Darkern becomes a lawn ornament within an hour of arriving on Equestria.
  • Darker and Edgier: Darkern Edgier is the living embodiment of this, as his name demonstrates.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Arceus.
  • Deconstruction Fic: Of the oh-so-prevalent self-proclaimed "dark and edgy" fanfic in the Pokémon fandom, and possibly the genre as a whole.
  • Dye Hard: In-Universe; when Darkern tries to kill off Delia by writing "[Ash’s] mother had inexplicably died...", Arceus adds "...her hair bubblegum pink" to the end and prays that the book isn’t a Grammar Nazi. Fortunately, it worked.
  • Everyone Is Bi: What Darkern does in his final edit. His intent was to invoke Girl-on-Girl Is Hot, but he didn't specify who he wanted to be bi, and so now everyone in the world is bi.
  • Foreshadowing: Darkern takes an interest in Ash's oversized bed, though Arceus doesn't know why. It actually inspired his climactic scheme, to give Ash a harem of nubile women.
    • When Darkern calls Arceus a damned horse god, Arceus corrects him (He's apparently a llama) and says that he's in the wrong world for a horse god. At the end, Arceus sends Darkern to one such world; specifically, the world of the god-princesses Celestia and Luna.
  • Floating Timeline: The reason the anime has this is because Arceus accidentally froze time at some point. He fixes it during the story, causing a sudden change in age for everyone to various degrees.
  • The Genie Knows Jack Nicholson: Arceus' references to other works, which is justified by His ability to enter other dimensions.
  • Girl-on-Girl Is Hot: After Arceus subverts Darkern's plans to make Ash's harem one full of girls he (Darkern) considers hot and powerful — rather than ones who can reasonably be expected to be compatible with him — Darkern tries to turn Ash's harem bisexual to invoke this trope as "compensation". However, Arceus points out that making them all bi isn't the same thing as making them all attracted to one another.
  • Harem Genre: What Darkern tries to turn the story into at the climax. He succeeds, but not in a way he likes.
  • Hipster: A trio of these end up confronting Ash as a result of the Edit War. Arceus decides to check later if hipsters are supposed to exist in the anime universe.
  • Hypocrite: The hipsters who berate Ash for always losing every league have never actually challenged a league themselves.
  • Irony: Darkern, for all his attempts to get Ash to "grow up", acts incredibly immature.
  • I Want Grandkids: The reason why Delia suggests to Serena that she go visit Ash at his training grounds at the end.
  • Mundane Made Awesome: Invoked and subverted. Darkern writes his last edit with exaggerated movements that are meant to look grandiose, but look more silly than anything else coming from him.
  • Mythology Gag: In the beginning, it's mentioned that Arceus has to deal with two concurrent yet separate incidents happening in the Kingdom of Vale (referencing how the 14th movie was split into two movies with the same plot and slightly different characters) and a Meteonite incident that happened yet didn't happen (referencing a pair of unaired episodes that were eventually retconned from the show).
  • Noodle Incident: Apparently, the last time Ash trained at Professor Oak's lab, evil spirits got loose and Team Rocket tripled his insurance policies.
  • Not So Above It All: Arceus, the Creator of Everything and the more mature one between him and Darkern...blows a raspberry.
  • Punctuated! For! Emphasis!: Darkern loves doing this.
  • Reality Ensues:
    • Ash, a trainer who's traveled to many different regions and placed high in a number of leagues, battles a trio of jerks who have never challenged a league before. The hipsters send out powerful OU tier Pokemon, while Ash sends out Unfezant. Ash still wipes the floor with them, because tier lists aren't a good substitute for actual battle experience.
    • Often, Darkern’s plotting is foiled by characters acting, well, in-character. For example, an attempt to get Ash to go to Orre is ruined when Delia declares she’s not letting Ash go anywhere near that crime-ridden cesspool of a region.
    • Darkern tries to kill Pikachu with a herd of Gyarados. He doesn't take Gyarados' 4x weakness to electricity into account. And when he tries to kill Pikachu with a herd of Rock- and Ground-types, Ash (who has all his Pokemon with him at the time) merely commands his Water- and Grass-types to counter them.
    • Even if the Hall of Origins is nigh-impossible to enter, Arceus isn’t going to just leave an artifact of great importance out in the open. The real Book of Fate is in his nightstand.
  • Red and Black and Evil All Over: Darkern Edgier's preferred color palette.
  • Shipper on Deck: In a sense; where Darkern tried to give Ash a harem consisting of powerful women such as Cynthia, Sabrina, Clair, and Hilda, Arceus is able to take advantage of Darkern's rants to write Misty, May, Dawn, Iris and Serena's names in the book instead, arguing that Ash has formed a genuine emotional connection to them before any of this happened where he hasn't even met Hilda and only briefly interacted with many of the other women, who are also notably older than Ash anyway.
  • Shout-Out:
  • Status Quo Is God: Darkern tries to take solace in the fact he subverted this...until Arceus reveals that he never really altered canon at all.
  • Taken for Granite: Darkern's ultimate fate.
  • Take Our Word for It: The vile curse word uttered by Darkern, which would have damaged Arceus had He been a lesser deity.
  • Take That!:
    • The entire fic is one against those who use Darker and Edgier in their fanworks to an unrealistic and childish degree.
    • Darkern also continually mentions high-ranked and "fierce OU" Pokemon and “downgrades” Ash makes from high-powered moves, taking a jab at overly competitive players.
    • One occurs against Ashes of the Past, when Arceus briefly mentions a terrible timeline where the entire Squirtle line became anime fanatics.
    • Arceus tells Darkern that, if he likes pain so much, He could always send him to Zashono Academy.
    • A jab is made at Whitney's Miltank, which Darkern claims is a demon cow. Though as it was Darkern saying it, the take that may not be particularly serious.
  • Tomes of Prophecy and Fate: The Book of Fate contains everything that has happened, is currently happening, and will update itself when new things happen in the Pokemon anime universe. Versions of the book also exist for AUs.
  • Troll: Some of Arceus' actions against Darkern give Him this portrayal; for example, replacing the Riolu Darkern keeps trying to give Ash with Rufflet, and then Relicanth.
  • Ultimate Showdown of Ultimate Destiny: The huge tournament Darkern uses to give Ash a goal is billed as this.
  • Unwitting Pawn: Everyone and everything in the anime universe is this to Darkern and Arceus in their war. This is easily demonstrated when they're both trying to get Ash to say something at once; he ends up spouting a stream of gibberish, much to his surprise, before deciding that he must have too many ideas to use and tried to say them all at once.
  • Villain Ball: Arceus notes that Darkern's plot would probably be a bit more successful if he didn't keep reading out loud.
  • Wham Line: "Remember what you said, about this not being canon? Well, without realizing it you were more on the nose than you might have realized."
  • Wide-Eyed Idealist: Another thing getting in the way of Darkern's re-shaping of the Pokemon anime: Ash's near-lack of pessimism.
  • Willfully Weak: It's noted that Arceus could just destroy Darkern where he stands, but holds back because He doesn't want to risk damaging the Book of Fate.

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