This round begins with Gold reaching Route 32 to find Polibo's Poké Ball. There, he meets up with Wilton, who then informs him of the sneak thief who'd been stealing Poké Balls off many fishermen right after they captured the Pokémon. Soon, though, before the man could finish his explanation, a shadowy figure deftly snatches the Poké Ball he was holding, and an angry Gold uses his billiards pole to hit the pilferer straight in the jaw. It is then revealed as a wild Granbull that had a dislocated jaw it needed to have fixed, and Gold's shot did just that. The two then order the calmed Pokémon to give back the Poké Balls it took, and among the dozens it spat, Polibo's was among them. After Gold and Aibo rejoice their tearful reunion, Wilton offers his phone number for Gold to register, all while thinking that the boy's performance with his billiards pole was as impressive as his niece's adroitness in handling a fishing rod.
Gold then happily walks about (musing that Wilton was one strange guy, of course), before formally introducing Exbo and Sunbo to the Poliwag. On his Pokégear, he informs the good news to Joey and Professor Elm while noting that since the transportation devices aren't working, he'll just have to keep Polibo on his team for now. A figure then jumps out of the grass, to whom Gold asks "what" he is, before he introduces himself as one of Professor Elm's assistants, who wants to leave a Pokémon Egg with Gold for safekeeping. Professor Elm then informs Gold of his failed attempts at having it hatch, which he deems an important project, due to the fact that no one has yet seen an egg hatch. Gold flips out and asks just what his research has to do with anything, but he replies that a stimulus of being in a more active environment might be able to speed up the process.
Meanwhile, Silver visits Kurt's house in Azalea Town, where an overworked Kurt soon hands him a Heavy Ball crafted from the Black Apricorn he handed to the old man earlier. Soon, Gold too reaches the town and sees an Apricorn tree, from which he picks (what he thought to be) "an edible fruit," and Kurt's granddaughter gets a laugh at him before telling him that the Apricorns are meant for creating special Poké Balls with. Gold then mocks the practice and says it's a waste, to which Kurt cavorts in rage and tells him that before Poké Balls were mass-produced at factories, the Poké Balls made by his family for generations were the norm. He then adds that with Gold's level of discipline, the beginner Poké Balls sold at Poké Marts are probably the most fitting, but this time Gold barks in a rage and tells him that if he can't use one of his oh-so-magnificent Balls properly, he'll work as Kurt's apprentice for the rest of his life. Kurt then orders Gold to pick one of those fruits so he can craft a Poké Ball for him, and the boy yells just why he has to pick the Apricorn in the first place.
Soon, with a Friend Ball in his hands, he promises that with the Poké Ball he obtained, he'll catch a friend for the little girl, who then requests that it be a Teddiursa, which she has heard is around the mountains nearby. Gold complains that she should've picked a safer environment to catch one from, only for a wild Ursaring, the evolved form of Teddiursa, to attack them from behind. They then find themselves on the run, only to bump into Silver, who Gold suspects stole the Heavy Ball he's holding, but the girl corrects him and says that Kurt made one for him. Gold is a little peeved that the old man would find him unworthy of his Poké Balls and give a handmade one to the redhead, and swiftly changes his target to the Ursaring. After Aibo is ordered to attack, Silver calls him a flout for trying to steal his target, but Gold tells him that it's a fair game, but finding Aibo, Croconaw, and Sneasel's attacks to be of annoyance, the enraged bear attacks the girl, whom Gold saves, but when her favorite Pokémon, Teddiursa, jumps in, Gold ends up spraining his ankle.