Black Albino

Twenty-nine
Discord

Small and very docile, it protects itself with its small, poisonous horn when attacked
Pokémon Crystal Pokédex entry

The two Nidoran were hopping slowly along the beach, not really heading anywhere in particular. The sun was rising well into the morning, glittering on the deep blue ocean.

"See that sort of island of rocks there?" Talvi piped, indicating the rocks just off the coast, "My old warren's near here."

"Good to know."

"We can go and live back there, if you want."

"Go if you want, I'm going to keep going."

"Seriously Aurinko, give it up."

Aurinko went silent. She was determined to somehow get a group of pale Nidoran together and start some sort of rebellion against the darker ones. Finally, she spoke.

"Think about it," she said, looking straight ahead, "Pale Nidoran are only weak because we've never had a chance."

"So you've said," Talvi replied tartly.

"If we can learn how to fight properly, then we'll be able to get all the dark Nidos to treat us with a little more respect."

Talvi gave an exasperated sigh. "Aurinko, that's never going to happen, and you know it. Do you know how long it would take to teach ourselves to fight? Then teach a whole group of other no-hopers?"

"I don't care. If I can't do it in my lifetime, I can at least start something. There must be some Nidoran out there who thinks that."

Talvi shook her head. "I'm surprised you do think like that. No other pale Nidoran in their right mind would think they could stand up to a dark one, let alone an albino."

Aurinko was fuming inside. She stood in Talvi's path, her pale pink eyes menacing. "I do not care what you think. Dare to insult me like that again and you'll see just how 'weak' an albino can be."

Talvi was shocked into silence. Aurinko glared at her for some time, until Talvi finally sighed and looked away. "Sorry Aurinko," she whispered, "it's just that-"

Aurinko snorted and turned away from the smaller Nidoran. "Excuses ruin apologies," she muttered.

A dark blue shape suddenly exploded from the waves, spraying Aurinko with a torrent of water before grabbing her with a pair of dripping wet hands and making for the sea again.

"Aurinko!" Talvi screamed, registering what had happened. She bounded forward, stabbing her horn into the Golduck's leg as it struck for the waves with its struggling prey.

As soon as she landed back on the sand, Aurinko reacted, ramming her own horn into the Golduck. She didn't yet know how to release poison into the Golduck's system, but she hit it with as much force as she had in her, knocking it with a splash into the water.

The Golduck opened its wide yellow bill, sending another jet of water into Aurinko and knocking her back into the sand. She growled and ran at it again, leaping up and landing hard on its chest. As it opened its bill for a third time, Talvi jabbed in its side, pumping as much poison into it as she could.

The Golduck screamed in pain, throwing Aurinko off its chest and ploughing back into the waves, clutching its wound.

"You okay?" Talvi panted.

Aurinko stumbled when she stood up, but it was little more than a sprained ankle. The sand had cushioned the impact.

"Yeah, I'm fine," she said, then added hesitantly, "Um, thanks, for saving me then."

But Aurinko's rare show of gratitude wasn't heard. Her eyes widened in shock at what was happening to her Nidoran friend.

She appeared to turn as bright as the sun, so Aurinko almost had to look away. The bright white Nidoran shape began to grow slightly, her legs thickened and a stubby tail grew from her rump. Within a few seconds of it beginning, the glow faded, leaving in its place a very sturdy looking Nidorina.

"Wow," Aurinko breathed.

Talvi blinked and looked herself over, wagging her new tail with pleasure. She grinned heartily, then turned to face Aurinko.

Aurinko's face faulted. Something was wrong with the Nidorina's grin, Aurinko could see. It was in her eyes. Slightly nervous, Aurinko took a step back.

"Are you okay?" she asked, her voice slightly shaky.

"I'm better than okay." Aurinko jumped at the deeper voice, but more from the tone. That Nidorina in front of her wasn't Talvi.

The Nidorina took a step forward. "Now I can finally do what I've been meaning to for a while, but have been to scared to try," she said. There was something that sounded almost evil in her voice, and Aurinko continued to retreat.

"Ever since I met you you've been pushing me around, trying to get me to believe your stupid ideas about pale and dark Nidos. Face it, Aurinko, you're white, you're the weakest kind of Nidoran there will ever be. Anyone and everyone can and will beat you. How many battles have you won in your life? You only lived just then because I saved you. I don't know what happened to you at your own warren, but you obviously weren't loved there. I don't care what you say, I'm going home."

Aurinko was shocked, but she frowned in determination. "What are you talking about? I never pushed you into anything! You wanted to leave the zoo, remember?"

"That was because I thought you'd want to come and live in my warren, since you obviously had no intention of returning to yours. But no, you've got this ridiculous idea that pale Nidos are all-powerful and should rule the earth. Listen lovey, it's not going to happen, not in your lifetime, not in anyone elses."

"You've changed," Aurinko said.

Talvi rolled her eyes. "State the obvious." Without warning, she struck out with her right paw, sending Aurinko again into the sand. Before Aurinko could stand up, she hit her again and again, punching and scratching her hard in her rage.

All Aurinko could do was curl up in a ball and try to withstand it, but a final and exceptionally hard blow to her temple knocked her our cold. Talvi left her lying unconscious and vulnerable on the wet sand, the salty water lapping around her blood-stained white body.

Thirty