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Gilan

[Results] Spooky Tales Writing Contest

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Hello all,

 

First, I would like to thank everyone’s patience in waiting for the results for the writing contest to be revealed. We had a lot of entries, and the judges had a diverse field of contenders for the prize; it took some time to narrow it down to our winner and the runner up. The top criteria that we judged on were adherence to the theme, the piece’s ability to elicit a sense of dread, horror, fear, etc., and being set within the PokeMMO world.

 

Without further ado, please congratulate  @Renola as our Spooky Tales Writing Contest Winner! The judges really enjoyed the flow of this story and the pace at which it was told. It’s use of horror descriptives to set the scene worked well and the references to in-game mechanics and lore were well received. Furthermore, the judges thought that the setting of the work was appropriate and added to the overall story; something like the Sinnoh release would normally be met with excitement and anticipation, but this story flipped that on its head and made it something to dread and fear. All in all, it was a well-structured, enjoyable read.

 

For our Runner-up, @Rhyse delivered a great piece that left the judges wanting more. The judges thought it was engaging and had an appreciated thriller touch that made you read line after line until the piece was over before you knew it. The judges really liked the environment building of the piece and really thought that they could see the story unfold in their mind’s eye. The main theme among the judges that held this piece back was the word limitation of the entry; they felt that the ending was a little awkward and abrupt. Nonetheless, this was a very enjoyable read!

 

I have included both of these pieces below for people to enjoy. You can find the original contest thread with all the entries here.

Renola:

Spoiler

Drifting Away

 

It began like any other day in PokeMMO at the Daycare in Route 3 of Unova. As usual, a sea of player characters were swarming the Old Man. Disappointed mumbles could be heard as trainers realized the baby Pokemon they hatched just weren’t Jolly or Timid enough for their liking. Other trainers were literally throwing money at the Old Man, demanding that their Pokemon egg be a female. I nodded at the Old Man and gestured to my two Mienshao, revealing I was only here for the same reason as everyone else.

 

As the Old Man led my two Mienshao behind the building, I couldn’t help but notice the faint laughter of children in the distance. That’s right, I remembered, the children’s school was directly adjacent to the Daycare.

 

 “Hey Wendy, I bet you can’t catch me!” Doyle, one of the preschoolers, yelled.

 

“The only thing I’ll catch from you is cooties!” young Wendy shouted, tumbling over as Nursery Aide Autumn rushed to her help.

 

I smirked to myself, recalling memories of myself being that young and starting my first Pokemon adventure. However, my thoughts were interrupted by the Old Man returning:

 

“Your two Mienshao magically disappeared forever, but left us with this egg. We don’t know how it got there!” he exclaimed as if I hadn’t heard this story from him a thousand times already. “You do want this egg, yes?”

 

“YES” I said, carefully accepting the egg into my hands. This same process continued for a few hours, until the sun began to set as the children went home and the player characters dispersed. Although it was getting dark, I continued to aimlessly ride my bike back and forth throughout the playground to encourage my new baby Mienfoo to hatch. “Whatever happens, I just want this Mienfoo to be happy and healthy. And preferably Alert to Sounds,” I whispered to the egg lovingly.

 

I was admiring the beauty of the moon shining down upon the playground when my thoughts were interrupted by a voice:

 

“Hey!” the shrill voice screamed.

 

I jumped back a little in surprise and felt my heart began to race. Someone had come to hurt me or my baby Mienfoo on this unimposing night! I gulped and quickly grabbed my things, beginning to bike away.

 

“Hey, mister! HEY!” the voice boomed from right behind me. I let out a small shriek and turned around, prepared to face my worst nightmare. The shadowed figure behind me opened its mouth:

 

“Hey, mister. Have you seen my Pokeball? I think I dropped it when I fell over earlier.” 

 

I immediately realized my mistake. The mysterious assailant was merely Wendy, the preschooler I saw this afternoon. Laughing out of embarrassment, I told the young girl that I noticed a Pokeball on the ground by the slide. She thanked me and began darting towards it. All was well, but I couldn’t help but feel like something was still amiss.

 

In my peripheral vision, I glimpsed at a floating blob far off in the distance. Its eyes were shining in the darkness, clearly watching me and Wendy. After my first scare, I assumed it was a cute little Pokemon that might have been lost, so I began approaching it. Upon further inspection, it appeared to be a purple balloon Pokemon with beaded eyes. 

 

Wait, is that a Drifloon? I’d maybe seen a couple of Drifblim in my life at the Giant Chasm, but a Drifloon was unheard of in somewhere like this because they’re normally native to Sinnoh. I knew had to catch it, since it would surely sell for millions on the Global Trade Link! Unfortunately, I reached into my bag and realized that I’d left most of my team in the PC.

 

While I was deliberating what to do, I saw Preschooler Wendy accidentally kick her Pokeball off into the distance, directly towards the Drifloon. She ran toward the Pokemon and looked up, smiling at the Drifloon's cute outward appearance. It warmed my heart to see how adorable the girl and the harmless Pokemon looked together. 

 

After the two played together for a little bit, Wendy bowed to the Drifloon and said, “Sorry, I have to get going now, but it was really fun to play with you!” The expressionless Drifloon, unphased by her comment, beckoned for her to come closer. Trustingly, Wendy grasped the “hands” of the Drifloon with her own. Suddenly, it tugged for her to follow, and the Drifloon and Wendy disappeared around the corner at a rapid pace.

 

I realized what was happening and began shouting Wendy’s name. Without thinking, I hopped off my bike and bolted after them. However, I wasn’t paying attention and smacked right into the bars on the jungle gym, slamming into the ground as everything went black.

 

By the time I had awoken, I could tell it was morning again. A crowd of player characters were behind me, cheering at something in the distance. As soon as the grogginess faded, I remembered that Wendy had been kidnapped and jumped up. My bicycle and bag were missing, and the only possession I had on me was a Pokeball that contained the newly hatched Mienfoo. I bolted toward the crowd and grabbed the shoulder of one of the players with silver hair:

 

“Hey, could you tell me what’s going on? Have you seen a little girl and a Drifloon?!” I yelled urgently.

 

“Of course I have. There are Drifloon all over, and they’ve come to take us to the Sinnoh region! Platinum confirmed!” the silver-haired player proclaimed.

 

“W-What?” I  stuttered in a confused daze, finally letting my eyes focus on what the crowd had been enamored with. Throughout the playground and in the sky, there had to be at least 99 purple Drifloon floating around. One of the Drifloon floated down and gestured to the silver-haired player character I had been speaking with. Unhesitatingly, the player put his hand on the Drifloon as it guided him away, whispering sweet nothings about the OP Garchomp he’ll have in Sinnoh.

 

The only Pokemon I had on me was the baby Mienfoo, but I had to do something. I chucked my Pokeball toward the Drifloon, and the Mienfoo emerged. I ordered Mienfoo to use Hi Jump Kick, but it kept going and crashed right through the ghost-type. One by one, the player characters grabbed onto the Drifloon and were led away, foolishly believing that they were actually being taken to Sinnoh. I kicked and screamed against my inevitable fate, but a horde of five Drifloon circled me and lifted my body into the air. One of the Drifloon cast Hypnosis on me and I quickly felt reality slip away into nothingness.

 

Upon awakening, I found myself and dozens of other player characters strapped to chairs in a building. I looked around and realized I recognized this place: It was Fennel’s dream lab in Striation City. However, the room was pitch black and Fennel was absent. I quickly realized that it was futile to attempt to escape the chair, so I stopped struggling and accepted my fate. I heard Preschooler Wendy sobbing silently in the distance and player characters panicking because even their Logoff button wasn’t working. I put my head down and waited for what seemed like hours until the time finally came:

 

“Welcome. I hope you’ve enjoyed your last moments of consciousness,” a deep voice bellowed. A large, pitch-black figure materialized from the wall in front of us. It was Darkrai. I would have been excited to see a mythical Pokemon for the first time, but I felt nothing but sorrow and misery after realizing Darkrai’s intentions. 

 

“I have to thank the Drifloon for luring all of you here, but unfortunately, we’re not going to Sinnoh today,” Darkrai began, “but you trainers are going on a journey.” Darkrai paused for a moment, basking in the fear of impending doom displayed in the faces of the trainers. “You will be going to the Dream World, though. More specifically, the Bad Dreams World. Your eternal nightmares will provide me with tremendous amounts of energy that feeds from your suffering. Your body will become an empty shell, and your mind will be an inescapable prison of torture and torment.”

 

I couldn’t believe this was going to happen to myself and the other trainers, all because we let a cute little Drifloon lead us away. My last moments of consciousness forever ceased as a Dark Void cascaded out of Darkrai and cloaked me in an eternal darkness.

 

At first, all was black. Quiet. Even peaceful. Then, the screams started. I could make out countless Drifblim, Dusknoir, and Misgmagius glaring at me through the darkness. They glided towards me and began their assault. I screamed in anguish as they pierced my flesh and devoured my skin. Sobs of pain and agony escaped from me while choking upon my own blood. The laughing, mocking cries of Drifloon could be heard echoing in the distance.

Rhyse:

Spoiler

A door, some footsteps, a mask, a door

 

I used to like to take long walks with my pokemon. Not looking at my pone, not looking at the map, not looking at the destination. Unova is a great place to explore, but the forests were the best, lots of long shadows and fresh breeze was always welcomed.

 

I took out my pokemon to train since I was about to battle the Pokemon League, so I had to make myself stronger along my companions. We walked and we walked for hours, battling pokemon and healing them, I would heal mine when I reach a town or a city, without notice, the day soon would fall and it was harder to see since the big trees didn’t let the moonlight pass through.

 

I sigh, thinking that I would need to camp outside. I never liked that.

 

Soon, I would come across a big house, hidden between a mountain and some trees. Maybe the person living there could help me sleep inside and let my pokemon rest, so I reach the door and give it a few knocks, but I didn’t receive any feedback from inside. I went around and try to take a look inside, but everything looked really dusty and I started to guess that maybe no one was living there anymore. It was a two stories tall house, it’s weird seeing a house that big in the middle of nowhere abandoned. I decided to take a look and I tried to open the door. It was unlocked.

 

I saw that there were some light bulbs on the roof so I turned on the lights switch. Some would turn on, but the others started to blink a little bit, maybe it was because it was old. It didn’t seem like a fancy house, it looked like someone careless was living there, or at least, someone that couldn’t take care of himself pretty well. There was a kitchen on my right hand, with a table and a single chair. The table was full of papers covered in dust and a cup of coffee half finished. It was cold, rotten, most probably. The fridge had some stuff, but the expiration date was from 6 years ago.

 

I walked to the living room, it had an old TV, probably way too old. I tried to turn it on but it only showed static with a loud noise. I turned down the volume but the light from it would help me since the light bulb wasn’t working on that room. I took the papers of the table to try to read them on the living room. I had to blow off the dust on them because there was too much dust and dirt, soon, I could read, these were something like scientific reports, I wasn’t sure, it was hard to read and I was not an expert on the topic, but I was sure that it had to do with experiments on the area.

 

Aparently, there was a scientific here that came to investigate about ghost type pokemon and how they would react to… hard scientific methods to force them fuse, or evolve. I started to get nervous, I couldn’t understand how, why, and when they did this. Some sweat of my forehead fell on the papers and suddenly the lights and the TV turned off.

 

I felt frighten. My hands were shaking, but I draw the logic side, maybe the electric fuses were too old and couldn’t handle the power takes. Any of my pokemon could not make any source of light so I didn’t want to bother them when they were tired. I walked through a little corridor that leads to a staircase with a door at the end. I saw some pictures hanging on the wall of a scientist with some pokemon and what would appear to be a family. All the faces were damaged, like if someone tried to erased them with their hands.

 

I had shivers going through my whole body. I had a feeling that this wasn’t right. I walked fast to the main door and get out of there, but it was now locked. Now I knew this wasn’t right at all. My breathing fastened a lot. I felt exhausted suddenly when I heard the door from upstairs open slowly.

–     Samurott, come with me. – I took his pokeball from my bag and throwed it slowly and he appeared. He agreed and walked with me through the house and we reached the corridor. The door was half opened indeed.

 

I went upstairs carefuly, only to see darkness and a little bit of light from the window. There was a bed and a lot of long tables with scientific stuff. Valves with liquids inside and books opened all over the place, even on the floor. I tried to walk to the window and open it but I couldn’t, I even tried to break the glass, but I couldn’t. This wasn’t normal. I guessed that it was a pokemon making me trapped in here. Maybe a pokemon tortured by the scientist?

I tried to search stuff that could help me in my situation, I found a key. I ran down to the main entrance of the house and try to open the door with the key, but it didn’t fit. It was too large for it. Maybe it opened something else. I asked Samurott to look for a door. We looked through the whole house with no luck, until he pushed the sofa from the living room and discovered a ladder hatch on the floor. It had a hole where the key did fit, so I opened it. I heard footsteps upstairs and I started to panic. I returned Samurott to his pokeball and opened the hatch to go down. It was way too dark, I could barely see anything. I found a switch and I turned it on. There was light, but there was a dead body at the end of the room. It had a weird mask on his face. My breathing was too heavy and I was paralyzed and then, I saw the red eyes of a Yamask peeking from behind a table. I screamed, and then I realized, I was in front of the main entrance again, but everything was dark, like when I first entered.

 

I didn’t know what was happening, I tried to force the door to escape but I couldn’t, it was like if I went back in time, starting all over again. Then, I heard the footseps again.


Thank you to everyone who participated, and I hope you will all join in when the next writing contest is release!

 

@Renola please contact me via PM with your selection for IV's/Moves for your prize.

 

-Gilan
 

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I was waiting for this results to be posted! I died of happiness in this gray and lonely day xD thanks! And congratulations @Renola! I really hoped you could win this, i appreciated your story a lot and as I told you on private message, I wosh I can read some more of what you have to offer! ^^

 

Edit. Jez, now that I re-read my whole story I found out thatvit was pretty bad, I'm sorry judges xDD 

Edited by Rhyse

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Wow, I'm honored to have won and I hope everyone enjoyed my story! I know I had a lot of fun writing it, and I definitely loved reading the submissions of the other entrants. I haven't written anything creatively in several years, so it was great to get to exercise those creative muscles again. It's super flattering to get a warm reception and positive analysis by @Gilan toward my writing. Shoutouts to the other users who submitted awesome stories, as well as the other mods who hosted and judged the event. I would love to participate in more PokeMMO based stories as well as give others a chance to win. ^^

 

Christmas writing event when? :P

 

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