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EP147

41 bytes removed, 17 March
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Plot
 
==Plot==
On the way to [[Goldenrod City]], {{Ash}} and {{ashfr}} stop in a [[Pokémon Center]] to send his {{AP|Tauros}} back to {{an|Professor Oak}} after using it in [[EP146|the Tauros competition]]. Oak tells him that {{AP|Heracross}} is proving to be a very interesting research subject, sothus Ash also leaves Heracross with the Professorhim. Soon after, [[Nurse Joy]] reports that Ash's Pokémon are all in excellent condition. {{an|Brock}} asks Joy to examine him, but a nervous Joy conveniently remembers her duty to examine the Pokémon for something called the [[Fire and Rescue Grand Prix]].
 
Curious, the ganggroup decides to check things out at the nearby stadium. Apparently the Grand Prix is a {{wp|Firefighting|firefighting}} contest for Pokémon and their {{pkmn|Trainer}}s. Always eager to show off his skills, Ash decides promptly to enter the contest with his own team. {{an|Misty}} reminds him that the only {{type|Water}} he has is {{AP|Squirtle}}, but Ash is way ahead of her:says he'll just use her {{TP|Misty|Psyduck}} and {{TP|Misty|Staryu}}. After an irate Misty complains that he should ask her first, Psyduck pops out. Ash interprets this as an expression of excitement.
 
Suddenly, a familiar voice calls to Ash and Misty. [[Captain Aidan]] and [[Team Wartortle]] Brock, who has never met Aidan or Team Wartortle, observes how well the {{p|Wartortle}} have been trained. Misty [[EP106|fills him in]]; while traveling in the [[Orange Archipelago]], she, Ash, and [[Tracey]] met Aidan and Team Wartortle, the best firefighting force in the region. [[Ash's Squirtle]] had worked out with the team and even helped to put out a major fire. Aidan reveals that he and his team are the returning champions in the Fire and Rescue Grand Prix. The lead Wartortle shakes claws with Ash's Squirtle, its friend and rival.
 
The group goes to the workout center, where Trainers and their teams are busy practicing before the competition. Aidan later contacts the event management team and confirms that Ash can enter the contest. Brock looks around at the other teams, noting that competition will be stiff. Ash, of course, isn't worried. Then, Squirtle notices [[Officer Jenny]] and its old [[Squirtle Squad]]. Jenny notices that the Squirtle all look nervous. She assures them that they will do fine if they work as a team. Suddenly the Squirtle notice their former leader. While the reunited Squirtle Squad exchange happy greetings, Ash and {{ashfr}} greet Jenny. JennyShe [[EP012|recounts]] how Ash and his friends converted the Squirtle Squad from ragtag delinquents to responsible and talented firefighters. At the mention that Team Wartortle are the returning champions, the Squirtle Squad expresses fear, at which Ash's Squirtle scratches its chin in an unimpressed manner. Meanwhile, {{TRT}} watches from a nearby window and soon set their sights on stealing all the Pokémon in the competition, including Ash's Pokémon.
 
While Ash's Squirtle continues to catch up with its old friends, Jenny asks if the Squirtle Squad can have a joint practice session with Team Wartortle. Aidan agrees, and both teams prepare for the target range, where Pokémon use their attacks to bring down targets. The Squirtle Squad looks very nervous as the practice begins. Aidan tells his Wartortle to focus on each target, listen to the lead Wartortle, and work as a team. The strategy works; each Wartortle aims with precision, taking down one target at a time with the concentrated {{m|Water Gun}} attacks. In contrast, the Squirtle Squad seem out of focus. Their aim is off and they're not working with each other. While Jenny and Ash urge the Squirtle on, Brock observes that they're probably nervous being next to such a high-rated team as Team Wartortle. Ash's Squirtle decides to take action: it steps on each of the Squirtle's tails. Jumping up together in pain, the Squirtle finally aim as one like the Wartortle. Ash's Squirtle orders them to take down each target. When the practice ends, both teams have hit all the targets. The Squirtle Squad seem much more confident with their leader back. Ash notes that the Squad does not function without his Squirtle.
After Ash's disappointing failure, the Squirtle Squad faces off against a team of Golduck, who apparently came in second place in the previous Grand Prix. Aidan worries that the pressure of the competition may be braking the Squirtle's concentration. His diagnosis proves correct; the Squad looks even more nervous than it did during the practice session. As the round starts, the Golduck team spring quickly and efficiently into action, with each Golduck taking one side of the burning house. The Squirtle Squad, on the other hand, appears too nervous to move. When they finally get going, one of the Squirtle trips and bowls over the others, bringing them all down in a struggling heap. After managing to get to their feet, the Squad aim their Water Guns at their burning house, but their efforts are weak and uncoordinated. At this rate, the Golduck will win easily. Concerned, Ash's Squirtle hurries up to Jenny, followed by Ash and Pikachu. Jenny's attempts to get the Squad to listen to her are futile, but then Ash comes up with a bright idea: Pikachu uses {{m|Thunder Shock}} on the Squirtle to get their attention. Ash tells them that they need to listen to their leader. At this, Ash's Squirtle looks surprised, but Ash reassures it by saying that the Squad needs it. Squirtle takes control once again, and under its leadership, the Squad gets back into the fight. In the end, it's a close match, but the Squirtle Squad come out on top.
 
Suddenly, the extinguished fire reignites, and the house soon explodes. From the ground beneath where the house stood emerges Team Rocket in one of its giant [[Team Rocket's mechas|contraptions]]. After reciting their {{motto}}, Team Rocket proceeds with their nefarious plan. Their machine, called the Torcher Scorcher, shoots flames out of its arms straight at the Squirtle, Jenny, Ash, and Pikachu. Aidan and Team Wartortle come to the rescue with the team's Water Guns, but [[James]] simply turns up the heat. Other Trainers start running towards the Torcher Scorcher with their Pokémon to try to help, but that was what Team Rocket was waiting for. {{MTR}} presses a button and sends nets flying out from the Torcher Scorcher's body, ensnaring all the Pokémon - except the Squirtle Squad. Ash tries to run at the giant mecha, but Jenny pulls him away just in time to avoid the flames. As Team Rocket douses the stadium in fire, Ash tells his Squirtle that it must lead the Squirtle Squad to defeat Team Rocket and rescue the Pokémon. After a short huddle, the Squirtle Squad don the infamous glasses of its delinquent days and aim their Water Guns at the Torcher Scorcher. Team Rocket tries to step on the Squirtle, but Ash's Squirtle's orders keep its team members from getting crushed. Brock and Misty happily note the teamwork and superb timing of the Squad. Finally, Team Rocket gets dizzy from their efforts, and the mecha loses its balance and falls over. Squirtle crashes into Team Rocket's command station and blasts them against the wall with Water Gun. Then it stomps on all the controls, sending sparks flying. The door to the mecha's holding area opens, freeing the Pokémon. Squirtle jumps out of the Torcher Scorcher, but Team Rocket isn't through yet. The mecha gets up and prepares to blast Ash, Jenny, and the Pokémon with fire, but before Team Rocket can act, Pikachu and Squirtle combine their {{m|Thunderbolt}} and Water Gun attacks to blast the mecha. Team Rocket bids a bitterly painful farewell.
 
As Team Rocket sets the stadium on fire, Ash tells his Squirtle that it must lead the Squirtle Squad to defeat Team Rocket and rescue the Pokémon. After a short huddle, the Squirtle Squad don the infamous glasses of its delinquent days and aim their Water Guns at the Torcher Scorcher. Team Rocket tries to step on the Squirtle, but Ash's Squirtle's orders keep its team members from getting crushed. Brock and Misty happily note the teamwork and superb timing of the Squad. Finally, Team Rocket gets dizzy from their efforts, and the mecha loses its balance and falls over. Squirtle crashes into Team Rocket's command station and blasts them against the wall with Water Gun. Then it stomps on all the controls, sending sparks flying. The door to the mecha's holding area opens, freeing the Pokémon. Squirtle jumps out of the Torcher Scorcher, but Team Rocket isn't through yet. The mecha gets up and prepares to blast Ash, Jenny, and the Pokémon with fire, but before Team Rocket can act, Pikachu and Squirtle combine their {{m|Thunderbolt}} and Water Gun attacks to blast the mecha. Team Rocket bids a bitterly painful farewell.
 
While construction trucks are busy repairing the stadium, Ash has a talk with his Squirtle. He says that the Squirtle Squad is very strong, but they need their leader. Ash's Squirtle looks sadly between its Trainer and its friends; Ash smiles encouragingly, and the Squad looks hopeful. Squirtle makes its decision: it will lead the Squirtle Squad like it did in the old days.
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