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I had recently become vaguely interested in Pokemon, seeing all these stories on the internet where that ghost from Lavender Town could kill the pokemon (rather than making it faint), and having it for the entire game.
Or perhaps the one where RED, the main character of the original pokemon game(s), talked about his fame and got angry about being demoted from main character to final boss.

These scary stories...or what were now called,"Pokepastas" took up my afternoons each day. With each new story I became more and more fixated on this idea that I had been missing out something great throughout my childhood, and while I knew these stories only existed through Rumors and hacked games, still, I figured that it would not hurt to try out the Pokemon Universe like other people in my generation had.

When the curiosity had gotten so strong that I could not wait another moment to play one of these games, I decided to ask my friend (we will call him 'Bill' for privacy reasons)...I asked Bill if he happened to have a copy of Pokemon that I might be able to loan for a few weeks, maybe until I could afford a used one or something. Immediately after asking his face turned pale, a sickly color of white that I had never seen on him before, even after all the years of knowing him.
Finally, with a stammer he admitted to having one copy, but he said it was old and that he doubted I would enjoy it very much. Still, I was persistant and kept asking him to loan me the copy. Even after all this it never dawned on me that something might be wrong here, and slowly, I was wearing Bill down. Eventually, he gave up with a deep and heavy sigh that signalled defeat. He looked around to make sure no one else was looking before he rushed inside his house. I could hear things being rustled around from the upstairs window that was left open. the weather had been pretty nice so I'm sure bill had left his window open to get some air. Still, it seemed like he was going through an awful lot of trouble just to get a little game. There were things being tossed about, sounds of locks clicking? I wasnt for sure...still, it took a good fifteen minutes for Bill to find the game before he ran downstairs and just threw it at me. I barely managed to catch it and was about to mutter my thanks when Bill hurriedly said: "I am very busy at the moment, sorry!!!"

That's when he slammed the door and locked it behind him. Now it finally dawned on me that something was really bothering Bill, and whether it concerned me or the game, I wasn't sure at this point.
So, on my way home I took out my cell phone to call him... well 'attempted' to call... he didnt answer, the phone would ring once and then go straight to voicemail. "What the fuck Bill?! You give me a game and then start acting like a jackass?!" it wasn't the nicest voicemail in the world...but I was only speaking my mind.

Oh well, it's not like it had come as too big of a surprise. Bill had been acting weird as of late anyways, and it would seem he was only getting weirder day-by-day. It had started about 2 weeks prior to my visit. Normally a very talkative guy and overly kind, he had just stopped talking to people. He locked himself inside the house all day long and avoided as much human-contact as possible. I figured it was an early life-crisis or something...I had tried talking with his Mother a few days back, but she didn't have anything new to say about the situation. She barely seemed to notice the difference at all. All she kept saying was that Bill was very busy..but I could not wrap my head around what could have him so occupied.
But, anymore I could care less... I had just entered a relationship with a really nice girl who lived a few blocks down from me, I had a part-time job which gave me some extra cash to play with when I didn't need to buy anything important, and for someone my age, I was living the good life. I happily strolled home with the game in hand...

...but the girlfriend. I set the game down in my drsser drawer for the time being. After all, I still had the rest of the week to play.


Three days later my girlfriend left me. I dunno...it was the typical stuff. I didn't listen to her, I never wanted to go out, we were too different and blah-blah-blah. I had tried phoning Bill as this had put a damper on my mood, but even after three days without seeing me, he was still ignoring me like an asshole and behaving in a rather odd fashion.

I tried to act as though I did not care about the break-up, and as I layed back on my bed, staring at the cieling, that's when I remembered about the game. I rummaged through my dresser drawer until I found it. After I had retrieved the game from its hiding place I was excited to just put it into my Nintendo DS to play. I determined that this had to be Ruby version because of the Red cartridge, but otherwise, the label was scratched up like a 4-5 year old had gotten thier hands on it and tore the poor sticker off.
There were some places were the label had been left intact because of the glue, but barely.

After putting the game into the DS that I had gotten for Christmas the year before, I decided to watch the opening scene in order to fully identify the game, that and I used it as a way to get pumped because I knew I was bound to be playing this game for hours on end. I watched at the "Gamefreak" logo loaded, the screen stuck for a few second, the music that had begun to play just stuck on a low and very irritable note. I thought the game had frozen, but, when I went to turn the power off to try the cartridge again, the screen faded to black and then the Pokemon screen came up. But, that's just the thing. There was no cut-screen, no trainers, no Pokemon...it was just the logo...it just said... Pokemon

Soooo I was stuck with a glitched up copy of Pokemon? It was probably just another hack! That's why Bill wanted to get rid of it! He knew games like this were illegal and he threw it at me to wash the dirt off of him! I laughed so hard as I thought I had finally put the pieces together. Of course Bill would have been scared over something as small as this. But now, my blood was racing faster than it has been before. A hack!! What could it be? Maybe I would be able to play in all the regions... that would be cool, you know, six or seven games, all in one?
You really can't beat that.

Then again? What if it was like all those other hacks that I had read about online? EVEN BETTER!!! My hands were trembling so hard as I was just a start button away from this crazy new adventure.

So, without wasting another second, I booted it up. When the game finally loaded for the option menu and/or opening cut-screen with the Pokemon Professor of the Region, the screen was black for about a minute or so (now I really was starting to think the game had froze. I did turn it off once before I realized otherwise)... then a white text box appeared...

"Whats your name?" 

Odd, I had thought that maybe a menu would have popped up first. Bill had owned the game before me and, I'll admit, I was curious to see what his progress was in the game. Even if it started a New Game for me, I thought I was supposed to sit through some long introduction, choose my gender or some shit first... then it asks me my name.
Then again, this was a hacked game. they did not always follow by the rules. 'What the hell...' I thought with a shrug. I put in a random name off the top of my head. It's not like it mattered, but I tried making it something funny rather than using my real name, because, why not? That's what these games were all about, right?

After I had submitted the name, another text box appeared where the first one had originally been:


"That's not your real name Randal."


My eyes widened. I wasn't scared at this point, but more or less shocked that such a simple game could know my actual name.

The text screen opened up again to let me input my name, so, with curiosity nagging at me to continue, I input my real name this time.



R...A....N...D...A...L...

 END 


The screen seemed to freeze once more, faded in a bit, stopped, and loaded for a second, and finally the text screen came back with a new set of questions that were programmed into the game.


"Are you a Boy?" 


Me, being the smartass that I was put 'NO' as my answer. I tried to press 'submit', but the option box never went away. Instead, another text screen appeared below the box and began to type out: 


"Quit lying to me, Randal."


The box stayed on the screen until at least, I switched the option to 'YES' and pressed 'submit'.

The option box went away, the screen took one more fade to black, and FINALLY---I was able to actually play the game. Having watched many Youtube tutorials about the game beforehand, I knew that at this point, after leaving your designated house, you're supposed to go into the tall grass. Normally what happens is, you will attempt to go into the grass and then your Pokemon Professor will call after you, run up to you, explain how it's too dangerous to be out in the grass without your own Pokemon, and etc.  that's when He or She takes you back to their lab, you pick your Pokemon and the rest is pretty much history.

So naturally, my first stop was the tall grass right outside my in-game hometown. Only, there was soemthing odd. No one chased after me, there was no cinematic...it was just my sprite, walking through the tall grass with no Pokemon, nothing. I was starting to think that there were no Pokemon in this area until my screen flashed, I heard the battle music playing, and a wild Pokemon appeared.

But I had no Pokemon!!! I started to freak out a bit. I looked like an idiot, standing there with nothing to battle the Pokemon. My only options were 'FIGHT' and 'RUN', and when running proved useless, I had no choice but to fight. The fighting option did not open a panel of moves, rather, the following dialogue was displayed:


RANDAL uses Struggle!
---
---
---
RANDAL is hit with Recoil!


I watched as my poor Sprite flashed red and black, showing that it was taking massive amonts of damage from the Pokemon and from the attempts to struggle. I had just noticed that my Sprite now had an HP-bar and it was getting incredibly low. Finally, as my Sprite neared its final legs in this battle, a text box appeared, similar to before.

It knew that I was going to die because it merely said:


"Not yet..."
"Sorry, but I can't let you do that, Randal."


Before the battle ended in my Sprite's grim death, I was warped to the Professor's lab where he began the normal dialogue and the things he would say for this particular area. But, things were becoming odder still as instead of saying:


"Pick out your Pokemon, go on! Choose one!"


The hacker had replaced the text with:


"Pick your slave..."


That was a bit sick and twisted, wasn't it? Pokemon as slaves?! I knew that the various Teams around the game tended to use Pokemon as tools, but this was something completely different. Everything I had shrugged off at this point, but slowly, the game was really starting to get to me. Either way, I swallowed really hard and decided to keep playing.

I tried to pick Mudkip for my starter. I had decided earlier on that I was most likely going to choose a water-type because they got great reviews online...but the game said:


"NO."


Alright...I tried to pick one of the other two Pokemon available, and STILL the game said: 


"NO."


So, what the Hell was I supposed to do?! I thought that maybe there was something I had forgotten to do, maybe talk with one of the villagers or something. Sometimes games could be finnicky that way so I decided to leave the Professor's Lab. As soon as the screen faded to show that my Sprite was outside, another textbox appeared and the sound that plays when you recieve an item went off:


"RANDAL Received Banette."


Awesome! I had heard of games like this. Creepy Black had a patch where you got a starter choice of Articuno, Moltres, or Mewtwo, so this was nothing new as far as hacks go. I was actually starting to feel like this would make the game more interesting, starting with a Ghost-type Pokemon, and so, I pressed on.I could finally go into the woods (now that I had something to battle with) and noticed right away that the game decided to give me some odd Pokemon in the tall grass. Things like a Whalelord or Relicanth on land, high level Pokemon that were easy to catch and were outside of their normal area. I was starting to figure that this game was made for fast progression, so again, I pressed on.

It took me no time to make it to the first Gym and challenge the Leader. I won. Easy.


Second gym done. Easy


But, the 3rd Gym Leader, I could tell, had been altered in some way. The pixels were really blotchy and badly coded. The creature standing before me did not have any sort of solid shape or colors, so I could not make out what it was exactly. But, weirder still was that, in the chat dialogue, the name that appeared for this person or creature was: GOD.


When speaking to GOD, it asked if I wanted to play a little game, and then the option box appeared. Oftentimes Gym Leaders ask silly questions or have strange dialogue to initiate a challenge, so naturally, aching to fight this strange glitch in the system, I picked 'YES' and pressed 'submit'.
Immediately the battle began and I sent out my Banette lvl 33.

GOD's first Pokemon that he sent out was a Pikachu. It had normal pixels except the level had been blurred out so it came up as unknown. Still, my Bannette was able to take it down without a problem. The second Pokemon that GOD sent out to fight me was a  Weavile. Same deal, unknown level, Bannette took it down with no problem.
Then, the third Pokemon that GOD sent out was...himself!!!  His text was now menacing and a deep color of red as he said:


"Kill me, and I'll kill you!!"



Something inside me just stopped. For a moment it was like I had quit breathing and was frozen with terror. Did he mean my Sprite? Or was he talking about the REAL me?! Not wanting to gamble it...I let him kill Banette.

After losing the battle to him (as I was not given the option to send out any of my other Pokemon after this) GOD's avatar quivered in what seem to be a twisted sense of joy.


"Mmmmm... fresh meat."



Gross! I had never thought of anyone eating Pokemon before. then again, I guess it might actually make sense. Still, the thought of him ripping into my Banette sent shivers down my spine. Especially since it was a Ghost-type Pokemon. Where was the nutrtional value in that?!

It was in that moment after the battle that the DS died. I thought the battery had been fully charged, but obviously I was mistaken. I could have just plugged it into the wall and continued to play. I had saved the game right before the battle with GOD, and even though I did not want to repeat it, I would have to try if I wanted to progress. Still, I had played enough for one day... so I just carried on about my usual business when things were slow, and soon fell asleep while watching a documentary.

I had a dream that night about Banette getting devoured by that 'thing'...or: GOD, I guess I should say.
I woke up with a start but had managed to sleep the whole night. Because I had never saved after the Gym battle, I turned on the DS (it had been charging overnight) and sighed with relief when Banette was still in my party. Only, when I took a closer look at it, something was not right. The pokeball that was next to the Pokemon Sprite had been crossed out. The status of my Banette was not OK, not Fainted....it was 'EATEN'.

Again, remembering the dream I began to shiver. I was guessing that the cartridge had some sort of autosave feature. Still, now I had to go get another Pokemon if I was to try and face GOD one more time. Then again, did I really want to? I blame it on my age and the naivety that hits around that time because I eventually answered my own question by going out and finding a Lv.50 Zangoose.

I returned back to the Gym and challenged GOD with the same dialogue as before. Only this time, instead of sending out his other two Pokemon, GOD only sent out himself, and again, he had the same dialogue.



 "Kill me, and I'll kill you!"


Again, my nerves got the best of me. I let him win again this time he said:


"This one will go nicely with Spoink."


By now I was wondering if GOD was just programmed to say these things...or that maybe Spoink was the victim of another person that had owned this game and did not dare to challenge GOD. Maybe the Spoink had belonged to Bill.


Trying to figure this out, I approached GOD to try and speak with him again...and the damn DS decides to freeze up on me!!! This seemed to be a regular pattern when it came to this GOD person. He was never to be bothered twice in one day. Still, I layed back down and played everything through my head. The text boxes and their knowledge of my real-world identity, GOD's apetite for Pokemon flesh, it was all very disturbing. I tried to contact Bill to ask him about it, maybe ask him if he had a Spoink, but the phone just rang and rang. It did not even go to the voicemail (he might have shut it off since I cursed at him last time). I even tried to research it online to see if anyone had posted up this hack before, maybe had written a Pokepasta about it...but there was nothing to be found. Finally, when I looked up at the clock it was 5 in the morning.

I had spent all night, trying to find answers to no avail. I really needed to sleep some more, I was hesitant to close my eyes at first, but eventally, I drifted off.

I had another dream about the game, only this time...It was Zangoose being chopped into sizeable pieces and placed on a wooden panel next to the remainders of what appeared to be a Spoink head.
GOD was the one doing the slicing, and when he truns around to face me, the weapons is still in his hand, and he  stabs me with the same knife that he used in order to cut up the Zangoose!!! Again I am started awake, I jolted up and out of the bed and that's when I felt the sharp pain that was in my side.

I lifted up my shirt to see that there was a stab wound there.  No blood pouring out of it, just a clean cut, and it wasn't very deep (thank goodness). I tried to look at it a little closer, perhaps inspect it more deeply to make sure there wasn't anything peculiar about it (No Zangoose hair or something), but, the pain and just the look of the wound mixed with the shock from my dream just cause me to pass out.

This time in the dream, GOD's on top of me stabbing me in my chest.
I wake up... and I have more holes in me, blood soaking through my shirt... I try to stand up but to no avail.

I pass out again... I'm guessing I should have killed that Bastard when I was given the chance.

But now, I will never wake up, ever again...

By now you're wondering how I am telling you this tale when I am apparently dead....

No-one ever talks about the dead press...



NEWSPAPER: Local boy found Dead.

15-year-old Randal Smith was found dead in his bedroom headless by his Mother 
Late last now. The Boy was found decapitated with a knife in hand and several
stab wounds to the body. 

Police have started thier investigation even though they 
seriosuly discussing the claim that it was suicide.

----
----
----


2 weeks later:


{}Police: "We have found a house with the now 'supposed' Murdered boy's
 head. It was placed on a wooden mantle with the remains of 2 animals
that cannot be identified and might not even be known to Science.
 ...no arrests have been made at this time.

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