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Pokémon 2099 : A Space Opera
Mission 001 : Begin
By Mega Raichu

The year is 2099, the turn of the first century of the new millennium. New millennium. How strange that sounds after a hundred years. Over the years mankind, and pokémon, had spread out into the galaxy. Johto was the first to colonize Mars and Kanto was the first to colonize the first "deep space" planet, Alpha Centauri. Through several more joint ventures between Johto and Kanto, many more systems were colonized as humans and pokémon increased their numbers. They would find that many planets already had native pokémon living there, while other planets had pokémon introduced to them. So as it stands, every planet in the known universe has a pokémon and human society.

As time went on, human nature reared its ugly head. Criminals began to appear and chaos ensued. Soon, several groups began to form. First, there's The League. The League is the final accumulation of Johto and Kanto, bringing them into one. The League has become the governing body of the known universe. Then you have small time petty criminals : thieves, murderers, drug dealers. These pleasant members of society can be found with their pictures in any Post Office. Then you have the outlaws. The difference between outlaws and regular criminals is about a million credits of reward money. These boys and girls are found on the GBI's (Galactic Bureau of Investigation) most wanted list. Then there are the Rockets. No one thought that Team Rocket would survive this long, but they did. Now they've become a huge syndicate and oppose The League at ever turn. They used to be all about rare pokémon, but its become much more than that. Now its more about money and planetary control than just pokémon. Then there are the pirates. The pirates are pretty much a melting pot of criminals. These guys work individually, and owe no allegiance to anyone. Then you have the people that profit from all this, the mercs. The mercs could be considered bounty hunters, but there's so much more than that. A merc will do anything, not always going after someone, to make a profit.

Me? I'm a merc. Name's Ryudo Lee. I've worked for just about everybody during my illustrious career. I figured I'd strike out on my own once life on Earth became too dull to bear. Normally I work alone, but recently I picked up a 'partner'.

"Chu!" The raichu floated around the ship, obviously enjoying the zero g.

My little 'friend'. I picked him up in the Vega system. This raichu is special, though. He has a cybernetic implant on the side of his head. Somehow it's integrated itself with his brain. Now he can interface with any computer system, and thus has become very intelligent. He can hack, do net searches, do accounting, and all that other boring, but useful stuff. The best part is that I don't have to pay him. All he needs is a home. I don't mind, in fact I've grown quite fond of him

Enough reminiscing. This mission is a small one. Dominique Jones, just another criminal, wanted for manslaughter. He'll bring in about ten grand. That should cover food, fuel, and ammo.

"Chu!" Raichu tugged on my sleeve and handed me a palm screen.

"Hmm, so we won't have enough to buy ammo after all."

Raichu picked up a wire with plugs on both ends. He plugged on into a port near the console in front of me, and the other into a port near his left ear.

"We will hardly make fuel and minimal food after we pay your debts." The

console read.

"Fine then. I'll have to cash in an IOU."

Raichu gave me a look that said 'You're hopeless'.

"Don't look at me like that. All we have left is my proton cannon and we both know that that's not enough for much of anything." I said as I set in a course for Phobos in the Sol system.

Raichu and I stood outside a large building on the surface of Phobos. I pulled out a cigarette, put the filter end into my mouth and lit the other end. Wispy smoke rose from the burning end of the cigarette as we plodded on towards the building. Inside the building was some sort of shabby lobby. An old man sat behind an old desk that looked older than him. He looked up at me as we entered.

"Hmpf. You again." The old man said.

"Hey Johnny." I said with a puff of smoke. "Time to cash in."

"What!? I don't have fifty grand here!"

"Not looking for credits old man. Just fuel and ammo." I pointed with my thumb in the location of my ship. "Fill 'er up, and we'll consider the matter closed."

"Are you nuts? That will be more than fifty…"

"Chu!" Raichu handed me his palm screen.

"Looks to me that fuel and ammo will be at least thirty-five." I handed the palm screen to Johnny.

He took it from me and looked it over.

"There's no way that's right." He said with a tone of arrogance.

I sighed. I hate it when people aren't cooperative. I took another drag from my cigarette, pulled out my gun, and set it on the desk in front of me, in plain view.

"Raichu is never wrong." I said calmly. "Why don't you recheck those numbers?"

He looked down at the gun. I took another drag and let the smoke roll out from between my lips. He looked at me for a sign that I was kidding. I kept a stern face. He turned his attention back to the palm screen. Raichu let out a sigh of annoyance, mostly because this guy was hogging his favorite palm screen. I reached down and scratched his good ear.

"Alright, alright." Johnny finally said with a defeated sigh. "There's nothing wrong with these numbers."

He handed Raichu the palm screen, then pushed a button on an intercom on his desk as I grabbed my gun and slid it back into its resting place.

"Bobby! Gas up and reload Lee's ship, pronto!" He shouted.

A garbled "Yes boss" came back from the intercom.

"So that's it? We're even now, right?" He asked.

"That's right. Until you hire me again." Raichu and I walked out of the building.

I sat at the controls of my ship, starting the engines and running routine checks. Raichu was also running his own set of diagnostics. Once these festivities were over with, we lifted off. The lift off went smoothly. Those anti-grav engines were a good investment.

"Raichu, surf the 'net and see if you can't find the location of our friend Jones." I said without even looking back to see if Raichu heard me.

"Chu!" Raichu said as he hunched over his internet console and plugged himself into it. Oh yeah. The internet is something else that has changed over the years. Nowadays it's mainly a huge database of information on everything from businesses to people. There are only a few real "web-pages" left on the 'net. As it stands, it's just a source of public information, no longer used as personal communication thanks to hackers. Raichu's screen became flooded with pop-up windows with pictures and scrolling code on them. Raichu was doing his search. Checking the net and its code for any traces of Dominique Jones. Suddenly the console at my right came to life with spatial coordinates. Raichu had done his job yet again. I recognized the coordinates immediately.

"Tau Ceti." I muttered.

Tau Ceti. Probably the scummiest system in the known universe. Filled with the lowest criminal types you can think of. Thieves, murderers, assassins, politicians, they're all the same here. Now the only problem is finding one criminal in particular.

"Well Raichu? Which planet is he on?" As if I had to ask.

"Rai…" He bent over his console again.

My console showed the coordinates of the third planet. Just as I had thought.

"Ahh. Tau Ceti 3. Excellent choice Mr. Jones." I muttered.

Tau Ceti 3 is the perfect hideout for a man like Jones. Light laws, casino's, bright lights, a veritable Las Vegas of the universe. It's so easy to get lost here. I landed in a pad just outside the main "strip".

"Stay put Raichu. Things could get ugly in there." I said as I snapped a clip into my gun.


Once outside my ship, I lit a cigarette and plodded on towards the first building I saw, armed with my gun, Jones' picture and a camera, for proof if I have to kill him.

The building I chose turned out to be a full blown casino. The place stank of dirty people, bad cigarettes, and cheap liquor. I went up to the bar and ordered myself a drink. The bartender placed the liquor in front of me. It smelled cheap and didn't look very appetizing. I lifted the picture so the bartender could see. He looked at the picture and pointed towards the back. I lifted my glass to him and downed the drink in a shot. Gawd that stuff was awful, I thought as I made my way to the back. There were several craps tables set up here. And sitting behind one of them, just about to throw his dice was Jones. I put my hand into my pocket and put my fingers around my camera. I now stood at the other end of the table, looking inconspicuous. Jones threw the dice he had in his hand. I lifted my camera and took a snapshot. The dice landed in a snake-eyes, but that didn't matter to Jones. Once a merc takes your picture, one of two things can happen. One, you're about to be arrested and hauled off to some penitentiary for a long time, or

two, you're about to die. What most people don't realize is that the latter one usually only happens if you try to fight. And that's just what Jones was planning. The moment he heard my camera go off, he was up on the table, knife in hand. But I was faster. I already had my gun out and trained on the knife. Before he could react, I fired. The bullet struck the knife, sending it flying into a wall. He stood there for a moment, seemingly stupefied, staring at my smoking gun. A sneer crossed his lips, and he


"Why do they always want to do it the hard way?" I sighed as I gave chase.

He rushed through the casino, toppling chairs and people, who in turn dropped their drinks. The floor became slippery from the spilled drinks. I dodged these obstacles but I was losing ground. I burst out of the entrance just in time to see him climb into his ship. I let out a few rounds at him, but I was too far away to hit him. My bullets ricocheted off of his hull. I pulled out my communicator.

"Raichu! Start the engines, we've got a runner!" I shouted into it.

My ship's engines hummed to life as I seated myself at the controls. My ship shot upward. I locked my radar onto Jones' ship and gave chase.

He was leading me through an asteroid field, hoping to lose me. What he didn't plan on was my ship's great maneuverability and the fact that my radar has given me a map of the field. These asteroids were nothing for me and my ship. Two hatches on his ship opened and a turret rose out of each one and began firing. Dodging asteroids while under fire isn't easy. I turned on my targeting computer. It was time to end this. We got into a clear section of the field and the computer locked on to him. I took a few light hits, nothing that can't be cleaned off with a Kleenex. I returned fire. My shot hit home, hitting his left thruster, disabling it. His ship careened out of control and side-swiped an asteroid, ripping his hull wide open. He was sucked out of his ship into the cold vacuum of space. I slowed my ship and went over to the wreckage. His body floated around lifeless in space. His face had a look of extreme fear embedded on it. I slowly shook my head and pulled out my camera. Once his entire body came into view, I took the snapshot.

"Why must they always do it the hard way?" I asked myself.

I set a course for the Sol system so I could collect my fee.

…See you next mission