The following document was recovered from the author's room shortly after his famed escape, and has been published in the hopes of helping to lead to his eventual capture. This publication is the property of the Kanto Department of Investigation and may not be republished in any unauthorized texts. Plagiarism of this text is subject to trial at the full extent of the law.
People often ask me what my favorite Pokémon is. I always tell them, "Pikachu!"
But Pikachu isn't my favorite Pokémon. My favorite Pokémon is Poliwhirl.
I haven't lied about it for a long time, but I guess there's a good reason for that. I used to lie a lot, but I'm better now. Besides, everyone always thinks Pikachu is my favorite, and I'm tired of the questions and surprise I got all the time when I was honest. Now, I just don't tell people. But I'm telling you.
I first encountered Poliwhirl when Dad took me fishing. See, Dad really likes sports, and fishing was one of his old pastimes. Right away, I knew I had to have one. I loved the spiral on its belly and how it could make slime to keep itself alive outside of water.
Dad kept the Poliwhirl he caught, and we played together a lot. I'd fall asleep after a while, but we had fun when I was awake.
It was the spiral on its belly. I loved that spiral, and how deep and mysterious it was. I liked watching it. It went on and on and on, like it was going into Poliwhirl's body. I wanted to stick things in there to see if they'd go in the spiral, but never did, in case it really did go inside Poliwhirl's body and I'd hurt it. It was a silly thing to think, but I was really little back then.
No, no... I must lose this childish demeanor. While I am a child, during my journey, I've given up all rights to childhood. One who has seen the horrors produced by men cannot rightly be called a child, and cannot claim innocence under the guise of childish ignorance. I'm sure you think me ignorant, even now, or perhaps you think me some sort of genius? I can't tell you what goes on in your own mind, but while gifted with the genius of childhood, I'm burdened by the weight of adult issues. In the end, I suppose you can call me average, a person in my own right, neither child nor adult.
I suppose I should introduce myself! Forgive me, I'm a bit scatterbrained. My name is Satoshi Tajiri. I have been told I share a name with the man who created this world, but I know nothing of that. I'm twelve years of age, and I grew up in Pallet Town, a quiet, fairly new town in Kanto. I've loved Pokémon my whole life. I got my first Pokémon, Charmander, a year ago. While my birth name is, as I've said, Satoshi Tajiri, I'm far more well-known under the name my followers have given me – "Red".
Ah, I understand you're a little frightened, now that you're sure of my identity, as you've no doubt heard the tall tales spun by those who've misjudged my actions. "Spun" is an appropriate choice of verb, as these tales have been spun just like the whirling mass that led up to my current predicament. You must understand, I was once a curious boy. While once-famous for my curious venture into the dangerous tall grass outside my hometown, I'm sure my more recent curiosities that have come to light are of far greater importance to you.
Ah, but I forget myself! You must think me to be terribly off-track, if not insane, hm? I apologize for my tangent, but I figured it was best to introduce myself before telling you what you want to know.
That Poliwhirl is my favorite Pokémon is perhaps the most important piece of information I can tell you. Forgive me, my writing skills are sub-par, and I cannot write this piece to give emphasis to the important without up and saying what is important. Poliwhirl is crucial to what I am about to tell you.
As I grew up with this Poliwhirl, I found myself more and more attracted to the symbol on its belly. My childish thinking, that the spiral was physical swirling into Poliwhirl's body, was not far-off at all. You see, the blue-black spiral markings on Poliwhirl are actually its innards. Its intestines. I've had to dissect many species in order to better my understanding of them, and I can only conclude that Poliwhirl's digestive tract is the most unique I've encountered. The intestines themselves are tucked neatly behind a smooth, skin-like membrane. This membrane is, like your own skin, semi-permeable and sensitive to changes in environment. It is almost translucent in the areas where its entrails show, and even closer inspection reveals that the organs have their own distinctive, uneven shapes where food is digested.
Curiosity led me to wonder... Could the shape of its entrails bear any deeper meaning?
Had I not wondered that very thing, perhaps I wouldn't be where I am today, but I can't bring myself to regret it. My very own senses seem to reject the things I have discovered, and it wouldn't be dismissive of you not to believe me on the basis of the sheer audacity of my claims. A mad genius of a child, some have called me. Whether or not I am mad, I can't say for myself. They say those who are the maddest are those who struggle to defend their own sanity, but, in my case, it makes no difference.
To tell you this is to lift just some of the burden from me, and while this is a selfish whim, I'm sure you could benefit from this tale. ...If it could be called that.
Again, I apologize, as it may have been more fitting to begin this tale with on that note, but as I pen this in, I have no means of erasing my words, and it's unfitting for me to start from the beginning. You know who I am, and, I assure you, that Poliwhirl is my favorite Pokémon is a significant fact.
As some of you may already know, I did not encounter a wild Poliwhirl personally until far into my journey. Until then, I'd been raising my father's, a specimen I'd grown especially close to. It was this Poliwhirl, the one nicknamed "Poli" by my younger self, that initially led me to wonder about the deeper significance of the spiral.
I invite you to consider that your own body also has many spiral patterns. Your ears, your prints, perhaps even your entrails. The shape of the spiral is a fascinating one, one that resonates sound, leads the eye into its centre. It's a tricky shape, capable of vexation and illusion. The presence of the spiral influences the sense of touch, and coils of metal expand and contract to provide heat on stovetops and display temperature in thermometers.
Spirals are one of nature's best-repeated patterns. A weed, as it sprouts, slowly coils outward from itself as it comes to fruition, rejecting its spiral shape as it reaches for the Sun. Even in human biology, a fetus is curled in the womb, taking up little space until it, like the weed, grows and unfurls. This is a common, well-researched phenomenon.
Perhaps you find my terminology crude, but what better way to explain it? The spiral is the shape of inception – the very first shape born into our existence. Galaxies, solar systems, even the very foundation for life, are formed in that same shape. Do you believe me? No? Are you aware of the double helix figure? It's the common structure of nucleic acid, which, I'm sure you know, is the very basis for your own genetic makeup. Your very DNA is a spiral, wrapped up nice and tight, containing everything about you.
Yes, the spiral is a mystical shape! Cracking the mysteries of it could lead us to unimaginably powerful discoveries! It was Poli who initially led me to question the significance of a seemingly parodiable idea, and Poli who led me to discover the things I have.
Regretably, I haven't discovered great things, and for my impulsive actions, I have suffered.
I have many theories regarding the shape of Poliwhirl's entrails. While I don't think any species can consciously control its own evolutionary biology, I find that the spiral makes for, among other things, a terrific defense mechanism. Ah, but doesn't leading the eye to the perfect target (Poliwhirl's own soft belly) defeat the purpose?
No, I earnestly believe that the shape of its spiral is, like the eye-patterns on Scizor's claws, a natural defense mechanism, even a wonderful means of attack.
[The following few pages are a series of illegible scribbles in various colors of ink].
Forgive me, I've once again lost my place.
The spiral is rarely seen as a biological marking of a creature, often hidden inside. I highly doubt any simple human could use such things to their advantage, but Pokémon are powerful, incredible beings, capable of many things that seem impossible for them. My most famous defeat of Team Rocket's Boss lead me to encounter a very rare, oddly colored Persian who attacked with Thunderbolt.
While Poliwhirl is a Water-type, and any sort of hypnotic manipulation is more famously associated with Psychic-types, I once again invite you to consider that the powers Pokémon possess extend far, far beyond human understanding. Once again, I am only a child, but it doesn't take much more than a child's logic to ascertain that one can not be entirely convinced of something's potential on the mere basis of what is.
I began my investigation into Poliwhirl's powers shortly after beginning my journey. Poli was young, and despite being relatively low-level, had little interest in obeying my commands outside of our shared home. Our first few Gym victories weren't rightly ours, as Poli chose to sit on the sidelines, refusing to stand by my side in battle.
Of course, being a Trainer, I've also traded with many people. I can say almost certainly that I never let any of these Pokémon disobey me so easily, and we quickly became friends despite their previous Trainers.
I can't be sure when I suspected that Poli was manipulating me, but I know I joked about the idea several times before earning my fifth badge. Poli and I were still friends (or so I had thought), the proof of which was that every night, Poli would use the hypnotic powers its spiral had gifted it with to lull me to sleep.
I wonder, even now, if Poli was only toying with me, putting me to sleep out of loathing and not as a favor to me. Unlikely, as the two of us were great friends, but still, I often wonder...
I remember very clearly the night I began my research. I remember the way the shadows on the wall began to twist into helix shapes, the way my eyes refused to focus. It was disorienting and dizzying to study Poli the way I did. Several times, Poli tried to escape, and I was forced to return him to his Pokéball to prevent this.
I remember the tantalizing shapes made out to me, the spirals and helixes, conic, circular, geometric, spanning different dimensions and yet, it was the simple, flat shape on Poli's belly that continued to fascinate me. It drew me in, lulling me into a state of stupor that was simultaneously both glorious and terrifying. It was a high unlike any thrill of victory, or any rush of adrenaline from battle. The spiral, unending and beautiful, stabbed me right in the heart, spiraling into the center of me, threatening to unwind me at my very core, as though it spinned in a way directly reverse to the direction I did. While such things might make little sense to one who has yet to behold them, I consider you fortunate you haven't had to experience what I did.
As I'm sure you heard, people call my crimes an act of insanity, but I disagree, as I broke the spell in a rare, screaming moment of coherency. I had no choice.
While I mourn Poli's loss, I am glad that his death, avoidable as it may have been, allowed me to look deeper into the mysteries of the spiral. I preserved the carcass for later research, but the following morning, I was surprised to find that the marking on its belly had faded away, leaving only white skin. Given my poor methods of preservation and lack of thought to the decomposition process, this isn't surprising, yet unsettling as it may seem, brought me to peace with my beloved companion's passing.
I eventually obtained another Poliwhirl, one I'd been fortunate to capture myself. As you can understand, I initially avoided this one, but, as I've always been one to befriend all of my companions, we came to know each other.
By that point, I was very nearly done with earning Kanto's eight Gym Badges, and my legacy, as it was, led no one to suspect my crime. Had I not sought just one more taste of the forbidden fruit – secret knowledge of the spiral – perhaps I would have gone on to live normally and retain my rights to childhood as I should have.
To this day, I don't believe I acted on my own accord. I had no desire to do the things I have done, and those who've known me know that such things are unlike me. While I find it hard to recall my previous demeanor, I was a curious, sweet boy, and though I had the dark gift of being rather intelligent for my age, there had never been anything sinister about me to suggest I'd behave this way. I suppose I was most like the childish demeanor I tried to display when beginning this text, however, I find that mindset impossible to replicate.
I've since rejected the spiral, though my efforts, I come to admit, are in vain. As I write, my ten fingertips ache under their dressings where I've removed my own external spirals. To deny the shape within myself is to deny all that ever was.
As you are no doubt aware, a similar Pokémon, Spinda, also has a similar spiral motif. I've researched the effects of Spinda, and never have I felt more than dizzy. At the same time, nor has any other person felt such deep hypnosis from the effects of Poliwhirl.
That spiral has driven me mad. Of this, I am finally certain. Do you want to know what I've seen?
Perhaps I was wrong in discarding the significance of my name. While I was largely known to the world as Red, the Champion from Pallet and Hero of Kanto, that identity is dead to me now. I've reverted to my birth name – Satoshi. It was this man whose image and persona I take on, and, I'm sure, he who originally chose Poliwhirl as his favorite Pokémon. And, in turn, I suppose those who venture into my world are also a bit of me. I am, as you would say, your "avatar" on your own Pokémon journey, am I not? My name is "Red" to you, but you are free to call me whatever you want, aren't you?
It is my theory that I was created to feel this affect, as well as all those who take on this "avatar". It would explain the lack of effect felt by others in my world who've experimented with Poliwhirl's hypnotic powers. I wonder, then, if my namesake did this deliberately, using the spiral to lure people into the world he'd created?
Can you clearly remember your first Poliwhirl encounter?
Can you be sure you've never felt a change since the first time you encountered a Poliwhirl on the screen of your device?
Are you sure?
Are you sure?
It's best not to wonder what I've done.
[The following half page is filled with gimicky, childlike scrawls. Doodles of spiral-shapes and geometric figures, along with various, crudely-drawn Pokémon].
I resign myself to silence now, for I've said all I need to, and I'm sure this facility, one way or another, will come to silence me through their own means.
[The following three pages are blank].
Poliwhirl wasn't always my favorite Pokémon.
Credited to Pyroluminescence on deviantart.com.