The sounds of panicked shuffling emerges from behind the counter. No matter how hard she tries to hide it, you can see the faint glimmer of fear encroaching across her face... Quickly, she throws out a card, only for you to dispatch it immediately. Fear turns into regret, each rebuttal coming out weaker and weaker, until finally, on the last card in her deck... The lights go dim. Suddenly, the sun sets, and you're left with nothing but darkness... And yet, you can still clearly see her face.
The expression on her face seems empty. The fear you saw before is completely gone... The only fear you feel now is your own. "So." she said, though it seemed to be only a silent whisper, "you thought you could win, huh. It's a shame... We'll take this to my court, now." With the snap of her fingers, the skies burst open around you. Startled, you look beneath you, only to see the two of you suspended mid-air. "This is my game, now. These are my rules. The only way to survive is to win..."
Loading up her deck, a smug expression crossed her face, as your cards shuffle themselves. "It's your move, first." As you check your cards, joy creeps across your face, as you pull out the best card you've ever had in your hand... You go to place it, only to realize that the card has shifted the second it touched the playing field. Your pokemon has become a meager Diglett.... Was this your curse? Quickly, you look for the other pokemon you had pulled, only to realize they've all turned into energy cards...
"Hah, this will be over in no time." she gloats, pulling 6 Seakings out of her deck. "There's no way for you to win this." As her assault begins, suddenly you feel your memory hazing... Although this is the first you've experienced it, there was an odd familiarity to it... Every second, every card, every attack... It's all familiar. As deja vu loops endlessly in your mind, you make a realization - you've been trapped here, endlessly, for the past 10 years.
You try to speak up, but before you can, she cuts you off. "After all this time," she began, "you could never beat me. You're infected with the idea of winning, but it never happened... You're mine now. You've always been mine... Together, we will play Pokemon TGC Generation 1, forever." Horror crosses your face. It was almost as if she could read your thoughts... Terrified, you began to plot a way out. Some way to throw her off, to escape for good. "Hah, wow. You really think you can beat me?"
She chuckled to herself, "It's been 10 years. There's no way you could win, even now." All hope began to escape from you... Until you realized she made one, fatal mistake. Her pokemon was just about to faint. If you could break the cycle, perhaps... Just perhaps... "No, no. There won't be any of that..." She says, as she snaps her fingers, resetting the game. No matter how hard you tried, she always seemed to have you trapped there... Perhaps the only way to win wasn't to beat her....
Perhaps, the way to win... Was to stop her from playing in the first place. As loss after loss continued on and on, you finally saw your chance... By manipulating your infinite losses in the forever continuing game, you could change fate forever... As your vision comes to, you see two adults, a man and a woman, talking outside what appears to be a young girl's bedroom...
They were arguing with each other, but about what, you couldn't tell. One word, however, broke through the silence - "divorce"... Is this why she trapped you into this endless cycle? Is Julie coping with her parents divorce by trapping you in this game from hell? Your vision began to fade once again... This time, you awoke to a wedding... Those same two who had been arguing were now standing at the altar. Did you go further in the past? No... No, this was further in the future.
Standing by the altar, you saw Julie. She seemed happy, a smile across her face. A young boy was there alongside her... Perhaps her younger brother? Unsure, you watched as the events unfolded. As the wedding came to an end, something unexpected happened... The newlywed couple had taken the young boy and left, unaware that Julie had left to go to the bathroom, Pokemon TGC Generation 1 cards in hand. When they got home, they realized their mistake... She was gone.
No matter how hard they looked, they couldn't find her anywhere, only a scattered trail of Pokemon TGC Generation 1 cards, leading to a dead end. Where had she gone...? Through this vision, you realized your duty. You had to find Julie and reunite her with her family. It was the only way to end this horrid game, to save yourself from this nightmare. "Where... Where our baby girl go, Hugh?" the woman cried out. You desperately began your search, deep down inside you knew that your time was slim.
Your search lasted for what felt like hours... Days... Even months and years. No matter how hard you looked, it felt more and more like she was nowhere to be found... As you were just about to give up and resign to your fate, you began to hear the hoarse wailing of a young girl.. Following the crying, you found her, sitting alone with a lone Seaking card. After noticing you, she asked you, with tears streaming down her face, "Do you know where my mommy and daddy are...?"
Nodding, you gently grabbed her hand, leading her to her devastated mother and father, Julie clutching tight to the Seaking card... As the crying couple saw their daughter, they burst into tears, rushing to hug her. You felt your curse begin to fade... As your vision began to focus, you found yourself, alone, sitting at the table, overlooking your Pokemon TGC Generation 1 cards.
It seemed like it was over... Finally, your torment, your hell, was over. Julie was free, and now you can be, too. Collecting your cards, you made your way to the door... You reach to turn the doorknob, only for your hand to graze against the wall behind it. The door was merely painted on... Abruptly turning around, your stomach began to turn. "You can't just leave in the middle of your turn, you know."