|The Girl who Speaks to Bugs|
Drawn by Cephalgia
Vanessa Abbot is the Bug-type gym leader of Audubon Town. She gives out the Butterfly Badge, shown in her image. Each of her three teams are made up of different individuals, with the Advanced Party being her own personal team.
Vanessa was born an only child, the daughter of Veranda and Christopher Abbot of Audubon Town. They'd intended to have another child to give Vanessa some company, but running the Audubon Insect Museum was just too much of a chore, since the town was starting to grow and the museum was gaining popularity. Vanessa's parents, grandparents, and a few aunts, uncles and cousins ran (and continue to run) the Insect Museum together. Vanessa helped by carrying large stacks of books in and out of the library section of the museum.
She was generally unpopular in school, with only a few close friends to give her solace, but they were great companions. Since she couldn't socialize, Vanessa spent her elementary years constantly digesting books on bug Pokémon that led her to develop a passion for them that she'd keep throughout her life. After school got out, she'd go to the library to get a book on bug Pokémon, and would then run out to the forests outside of town to identify some specimens. Many childhood afternoons were spent in the forest with her friends this way.
Another source of inspiration for her was her uncle, Harvey Abbot, who originally ran the Audubon Town Gym. On the weekends, she would buy some chocolate ice cream from the ice cream truck and watch her uncle train with his bug Pokémon, or if she was lucky, she'd watch him taking on a challenger for a Gym Battle. Two of his Pokémon were a Beautifly and a Dustox named Sunny and Faithful. They were an item, and so Harvey would send them out in a Double Battle if he so pleased.
But then, one day, at the age of thirteen, she woke up to hospital sirens. She soon learned that her uncle Harvey had had a seizure and was under intense care at the Audubon hospital. After crying, fidgeting on the steps of the museum, and hoping her uncle was okay all day long, Vanessa was eager to hear the news her parents returned. The diagnosis was that a rare brain disease was causing his body to attack itself, and it'd been developing in him for several years. If it were to persist for several more years, the attacks would get worse and her uncle could die.
After some time spent in misery, the good news came: Doctors from Sinnoh had a cure that would stop the disease's development. A medical Gardevoir was sent to Audubon Town to look after him and check his brainwaves 24/7, and Vanessa would come to her uncle's room to stay by his side every day. Sadly, she'd heard that such an illness would take years to fully subdue. It looked like Uncle Harvey would be okay, but the prospect of him staying gym leader, for at least the next few years, was out of the question. But one night, Vanessa's uncle noticed her looking particularly sad, and he reached out to touch her on the arm and told her: "Vanessa, stop worrying about me. You rarely get out and do anything anymore. You should go out and follow your heart!"
So, Vanessa went on a walk alone to the forest, indecisive. Opening up her book, she started thinking about what career she should take, toying with the idea of becoming a bug Pokémon researcher. Then, she heard some Pokemon call to her. It was Uncle Harvey's Sunny and Faithful, and they had a surprise for her. They had had an egg. Vanessa was surprised and bewildered when they offered the egg to her, but she accepted their present. A week later, the egg hatched, and Vanessa's own Wurmple was born. She decided to name him 'Lucky'. Pleased with this turn of events and hoping to get her some life experience, her parents let her go on her own adventure, giving her a Pokédex and Poké Balls. Now, she had all the tools she needed to follow her heart. Vanessa and Lucky, as they left Audubon Town, felt ready to take on the world.
Vanessa was never interested in the Pokémon League, and so spent three solid years gathering a party of powerful bug-type Pokémon and loyal friends. By the time she was sixteen, she came back to Audubon Town and Uncle Harvey was almost better, walking and talking every day. In Audubon, there'd been a 3 year period of interim gym leaders, and none of them had been too successful. When everyone was expecting Harvey to go back to the post of Gym Leader, Harvey surprised everyone by suggesting Vanessa take the position. Vanessa, a bit taken aback, accepted. She was accredited by the Pokémon League, and that's where Vanessa is today.
Vanessa is still as into Bug Pokémon as she was all her childhood, but she is a lot happier and better-adjusted than she used to be. She's become a bit more sociable, making friends more easily than she used to. Vanessa has a very voracious and inquisitive mind; her way of thinking is very methodical, jumping onto a subject and turning it inside-out thoroughly before jumping to another. This can lend itself to her advantage; when she is thinking about relevant events, like gym battles, she can be very formidable and predict her opponent's moves several steps in advance.
Attitudes Towards Things and PeopleEdit
One thing that makes Vanessa a little sad is the expansion of her town. It was already growing when she was born, but it's even bigger now, and she knows it might one day be a city. While there's still time left, she likes to get out from the rat race of everyday life and sneak away to the still-unspoiled forest to meet more bug Pokemon, and usually comes back with a gaggle of new friends. Sometimes, she stands up trainers who wished to challenge her. While friendly and appreciating people, she is not usually receptive to the young men that sometimes hit on her, as the idea of romance is still a little scary to her.
She is noticably the youngest of all the Gym Leaders, at the age of 18. Because of this, her looks, and her training of what is popularly perceived as a weak Pokémon type, she has been in the past derided as the 'runt' of the Gym Leader litter. However, she is a formidable battler with the inclusion of her wildcard Gliscor. She is also more insightful than many would give her credit for; she has noticed the slow creep of SOLARUS Inc.'s influence throughout Tatsu and the rise of Team Chandra, and plans to staunchly resist both.
Behaviors and habitsEdit
While she is very competent when keeping her mind focused on current events, it's a different story when she's focusing on irrelevant topics: then, it seems like she's spacing out and she starts to get clumsy, always dropping things and falling over because she's distracted by something else. Due to her curiosity, she has a habit of examining things with her trusty magnifying glass. She can even be seen using it to keep an eye on her Gym Battles and check her and her opponent's Pokémon for small details that might prove crucial to victory. She also has a penchant for chocolate ice cream, which she admits is a weakness of hers, and can be seen purchasing it and eating it with her Beautifly, Lucky.
Vanessa is a somewhat modestly built girl who stands at 5'3". She dresses conservatively and has been said to have a poor fashion sense, but this is due more to ignorance than anything, as she'd rather study bug Pokémon instead. She keeps a large sun hat on her head from sunrise til bedtime, only taking it off to sleep. The hat is a dark straw color, with a pink band around it and one of her gym's Butterfly Badges affixed to the hat. She has blue eyes and large round glasses, and keeps her black hair in two thick, giant braided pigtails thrown over her shoulders. She wears a light green vest over a white long-sleeved shirt, a black belt, and an almost-knee-length brown skirt with a butterfly motif. She has blue boots with green trim and soles.
As with all Tatsu gym leaders, she keeps three teams of Pokémon to suit trainer's skill levels. She has a large group of bug Pokémon, including a Parasect named Cappy and a Pinsir named Shears. She has some differing Pokémon in her Lv.1 and Lv.2 teams, but her Advanced team is the team she originally used on her Tatsu travels. Her Advanced team is as follows.
Lucky is Vanessa's starter Pokémon, a male Beautifly and the offspring of Sunny and Faithful. Lucky has been through thick and thin with his trainer, and his preferred attack is Silver Wind. Lucky sometimes perches on Vanessa's hat.
Happy is Vanessa's female Butterfree. One of the first Pokémon she caught, Happy is a solid member of Vanessa's Advanced team.
Atlas is Vanessa's male Heracross. She captured him in the Safari Zone of Tatsu. Atlas once won a Heracross strength contest, but he is more than just brawn.
Webster is Vanessa's male Galvantula. Vanessa captured him after almost getting stuck in his web.
Glinda is Vanessa's female Gliscor. Although Glinda is outside Vanessa's specialty, she was taken with Glinda's special attack, Fury Cutter. Glinda is an important asset on Vanessa's Advanced team.
Vanessa's name comes from the Vanessa genus of butterfly.
Vanessa's childhood story is inspired by accounts of the childhood of Pokémon's creator Satoshi Tajiri, who was known as 'Dr. Bug' in his youth.
Glinda's name comes from Glinda the Good Witch.
As a Gym Leader and an NPC character, she can be used freely; however, it is important to closely follow her character profile, unless of course it's something that's meant to be silly and out of character.
|Tatsu's Gym Leaders|