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Carrying On!

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Johto League Champions
English Title
Carrying On!
French Title
Courrier Express

As Ash & Co. continue on their way to Ecruteak City, they notice a Pidgey hurriedly flying away from an attacking Fearow. Ash sends out Noctowl, who hypnotises the Fearow into thinking it's an attacking Charizard, scaring the Fearow off. They turn their attention back to the Pidgey just in time to see it fall down through the trees ahead. Arriving at where it fell, they find it on a ledge down a rather steep cliff. Unable to reach it themselves, Ash sends Noctowl down. Upon seeing it, the Pidgey gets frightened, thinking Noctowl is about to attack it. Noctowl hypnotises it into thinking it's another Pidgey, calming it down. It happily hops over to Noctowl, allowing it to carry it up to Ash & Co. where Brock bandages it's wing. As Brock finishes, the illusion fades and Pidgey sees Noctowl again, unafraid this time. Misty notices that Pidgey is carrying something on it's back. Ash suggests they take it with them in the hopes of finding it's trainer.

As they walk through a nearby town, they notice hundreds of Pidgey flying about, all carrying messages like the one they rescued. Ash is wondering if they all have the same trainer, when a boy comes running up to them and takes the Pidgey; Ken, from Brock. Noticing the bandage, he accuses them of injuring it, but Brock explains about the Fearow and how they patched it up when they found it. He apologises for the accusation. Brock tells him that he should be proud of his Pidgey, but he explains that it isn't his; it's his grandfather's carrier Pidgey. He points out all of the other Pidgey, telling them that for more than 50 years his grandfather has been using them to deliver things to nearby islands that don't have a ferry service. It became so popular that he earned the nickname "The Pidgey Express Man" among the locals. He tells them that one day he wants to be a Pidgey Express Man, and introduces himself to them as Malachi.

In the sewers, Team Rocket spy an Ash & Co. from a camera pointing out from a manhole. Upon hearing about the carrier Pidgey, the decide to steal the idea, and all of the Pidgey. Meowth says he has an idea on how to do so, and tells them to leave it all to him.

Malachi takes Ash & Co. to the Pidgey Express Building and shows them around. He takes them to the Pidgey coop, where his grandfather is telling some of the Pidgey where they need to go. As they fly off to their destinations, Malachi goes up to him and shows him that Ken has been found, explaining that Ash & Co. saved him from a Fearow. He thanks them and invites them to have a snack with him and Malachi. As they sit down for a snack, Ash & Co. ask all about the Pidgey Express. Ash asks how he trains them, thinking it must be some sort of ancient method, but he tells them that all he does is take them out in a mini-blimp and show them the routes again and again. As Malachi goes to check on the Pidgey, Ash comments that he seems to love working with the Pokémon. His grandfather says that he knows Malachi wants to one day take over from him, but that it won't happen. Ash argues that he would be the perfect one to take over, but Malachi's grandfather tells them that when he retires, so does the business. They wonder why he would want to end it, so he explains that the world now is different to when he started; he can't compete with things like aeroplanes and e-mail. He goes on the tell them that you have to dedicate your life to a business like the Pidgey Express; staying up on stormy nights until the very last Pidgey has returned home, or sitting up with them when they get scared until they fall asleep. He tells them that he couldn't even get away when his son got married, or when Malachi was born and that he missed a lot of things in life which he doesn't want his grandson to miss.

Out in the Pidgey Coop, Malachi is sweeping up and talking to the Pidgey. Ash & Co. watch as he does so, commenting to themselves that he really does love the Pidgey, and thinking how sad he will be when the business closes down.

Inside the house, Malachi's grandfather receives a phone call. It's Nurse Joy, from Wayaway Island, telling him that the medicine he sent via carrier Pidgey still hasn't arrived and she is getting worried. She wonders if they have gotten lost. Realising that something must be wrong, he runs to the rooftop and takes out a pair of binoculars to look for the Pokémon. Malachi, Ash & Co. go over to him, wondering what's wrong. He explains the situation with the Pidgey and the medicine they were carrying, so Malachi offers to go and look for them on the mini-blimp. Ash asks if he can take a few passengers with him. As they take off, Malachi's grandfather tells Malachi to let him go instead, but his grandson points out that someone has to stay and wait in case the Pidgey return home. His grandfather continues to protest, but Malachi is adamant. As they set out, Ash calls on Noctowl, telling it to search for the Pidgey too. Ash tells Malachi to follow Noctowl.

Up in their balloon, Team Rocket are snatching all of the carrier Pidgey they can see, and collecting them inside a large bag beneath the balloon's basket. As they look for another Pidgey to steal, they spot Ash & Co. searching for the very thing they've been stealing. Jessie suggests making a quick escape as there will be trouble if they see the Trio, but Meowth has a plan. He pushes a button, and the whole balloon is suddenly surrounded by smoke, making it look like an oddly shaped cloud.

Searching for the Pidgey, Noctowl notices the oddly shaped cloud and begins to sense something in that direction. Ken also seems to be picking something up, but all Ash & Co. can see are clouds.

Inside the "cloud", Team Rocket are chocking on the smoke, hoping that Ash & Co. move on soon.

Noticing something wrong, Noctowl and Ken fly over to the cloud and waft the smoke away, revealing the Team Rocket balloon. Realising that their cover is blown, the Trio, still choking on the smoke, recite their motto. As the smoke machine stops, Ash & Co. notice the bulging bag below the balloon. Malachi tells them to give the Pidgey back, but Jessie refuses to without a battle. She sends out Arbok, though since they are up in the air it doesn't have the desired effect and the Pokémon begins to plummet back down to earth. The manage to grab it and stop it's fall, then order it to use Poison Sting. Noctowl dodges, but Ken has a little trouble doing so. Ash orders Noctowl to do something to help Ken, so it hypnotises Team Rocket and their Pokémon. Jessie orders Arbok to use Poison Sting on the twerps too, which it does, except they are in the other direction; Arbok is attacking one of Noctowl's illusions. With Team Rocket distracted, Ash and Malachi order Noctowl and Ken to rip holes in the bag of Pidgey. As the captured Pokémon escape, the illusion fades. The Trio turn around to see the army of Pidgey facing them. Realising that they're in trouble, the Trio try to make their escape, but Pikachu uses Thunderbolt, stopping them in their tracks. Ash and Malachi then order Noctowl and all of the Pidgey to attack. They Peck holes in the balloon, sending the Trio blasting off again.

Later that day, Nurse Joy thanks the Pidgey for delivering the medicine, and also thanks Malachi, Ash & Co. for saving the Pidgey.

Joy then calls Malachi's grandfather, thanking him and telling him that thanks to his carrier Pidgey and his grandson, all of the sick Pokémon are getting better. He tells her that he is happy they helped, thanks her for calling, and hangs up.

Early next morning, Malachi, his grandfather, Ash & Co. watch as Ken returns from it's first successful delivery. Ash & Co. watch, thinking what a shame it will be that Malachi won't become a Pidgey Express Man, when his grandfather tells Malachi that he has been thinking about who will run the business when he retires. Malachi asks if it means he will be allowed to take over and become the Pidgey Express Man. His grandfather tells him that it's possible, if he proves himself to be a professional. He tells his grandfather that he will do his best, but he is told that he still has a lot to learn. Ash & Co. go over to him and give their congratulations.

And later that day, Malachi and his grandfather wave Ash & Co. off as they continue on their journey, wondering what adventures lay just beyond the horizon.

This episode guide has been written by The Librarian.

Characters appearing in this episode







Ash's Pikachu

Pokémon appearing in this episode

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