After Kusa had achieved her second Gym Badge, the next day, Bugsy told them that the only way to get their next Gym, in Goldenrod City, was to head through Ilex Forest. Ilex Forest was a dangerous place as many people from all places and races have traveled through that forest recently. Bugsy mentioned that dangerous people have been going through there so he advised that the three Pokedex Holders be as careful as possible because they didn't know what was in that forest now.
Despite knowing this, Machine, Kusa, and Yellow wanted to venture into the forest. There may have been dangerous people within that forest but, the Pokedex Holders were ready for it.
Though, because of that fact that they wanted to be safe, for sure, Yellow called Professor Pine over in Kanto and requested her Pokemon from his lab. Professor Pine did as she asked and sent over the rest of her team. She needed as much protection as possible if she was going to become separated from them in the forest.
On top of that, Machine and Kusa trained together and made sure that both of their new starters and Pokemon were up to fighting strength. Because of Machine's recent evolution with Totodile into Croconaw, he worked on leveling up his Larvitar because he noticed that it didn't do as well as his Scizor or Croconaw. Kusa, on the other hand, trained her Cyndaquil and Phanpy as neither of them did as well as she wanted them to. It was only by chance that Cyndaquil and Kusa were able to defeat Bugsy. Nevertheless, Kusa believed that a win is a still, no matter how hard the battle was.
During their time training, which took about a day and a half, Kusa managed to make her Cyndaquil evolve into Quilava as well as making her Phanpy grow quite a bit stronger. As for Machine, Larvitar had grown in strength as well and he knew it had grown especially in attack, speed, and defense. Then, as their training had ended, and they were about to leave Azalea Town for the time being, Nurse Joy stopped them before they left the Pokemon Center.
"Hey, you three!" Nurse Joy shouted from her desk.
Machine and the others turned around asking, "Huh? What is it, Nurse Joy?"
"You guys have a call..." Nurse Joy answered as they raised their eyebrows at her.
"Who is it from?" Kusa asked as Machine picked up the phone from where she set it. It was attached to a large screen on which the other person on the other line was seen. It was a videophone and immediately as the screen came up, they knew who it was from.
"Gold?!" The three of them shouted surprised, seeing Gold's face. They saw that he was covered in bandages.
"Hey, guys!" Gold tried to say happily, however, his bones still ached from a battle he had a couple of days ago.
"Where the hell are you? And why are you all bandaged up?" Machine asked, speaking into the phone. "Are you okay?"
"Yeah..." Gold sighed. "In a matter of speaking. And I'm calling from the hospital right now."
"The hospital?" Kusa asked as Gold nodded. "How the hell did you get there?"
Gold sighed and then said, "I've already explained this to Professor Elm and I guess he told Professor Pine but... I'm going to tell you about something else that I neglected to tell them..."
"Okay... That's fine. You can trust us not to tell either of the Professor's." Yellow said as Gold closed his eyes and sighed again.
"Alright..." Gold said, as he rubbed his temples. "I was... attacked."
"Attacked?! By who? Was it the Reddosuta Shikaku?" Machine asked.
"Well... Not exactly." Gold responded back to him. "He wore the clothing of the Reddosuta Shikaku, had the emblem of the star embedded on the front of his coat, however... he said he was only apart of them to get secrets. And what's more... He wasn't wearing his hood. Instead, to conceal his face, he was wearing a mask."
"A mask? What kind of mask?" Kusa asked.
"It seemed like a mask... made of ice." Gold responded, rubbing his head from a headache he had received from the pain he was feeling.
"Well... That's strange." Yellow said. "Where did he go? Did you see him leave?"
"Yeah but guys, that's not the point I'm trying to make. I wanted to tell you to be wary of him. He's NOT any ordinary Pokemon Trainer. His Pokemon are incredibly powerful and he's shows not mercy to his opponent. He faced me in Ilex Forest and I think... he's still there now." Gold said as Machine smirked. "What is so funny about this, Machine? This guy's really THAT powerful! "
"It doesn't matter to me! We can take this Masked bastard without even breaking a sweat! Just you watch!" Machine shouted as he hung the telephone up, aggravating Gold. He slammed the telephone on the ringer and then stomped away, annoyed by Machine's calm attitude.
Gold, after hearing all he could stand, walked back into his hospital and began to fall into a deep sleep. As he was falling asleep, his eyes flickered for a second. A few times, he thought he saw someone. Finally, after he opened his eyes wide, Silver was staring back at him, hanging from the ceiling.
"SILVER!" Gold shouted as he jumped, moving back to the head of the bed.
"Damn, Gold, you're jumpy as hell." Silver said as his Sneasal let go of him, letting him on the ground.
"Silver..." Gold said as he calmed down. "What the hell is the matter with you? Why did you sneak in here?"
"Because... I need to ask you something." Silver said, walking over to the other side of his bed.
"What?" Gold asked as Silver sighed, turning back to him.
"When you went through Ilex Forest to get here, to Goldenrod City, you came in contact with a Masked Man, didn't you?" Silver asked as Gold rubbed his temples and nodded, although hesitantly to him. "You idiot! Why didn't you call on the others? That man is EXTREMELY dangerous! You could've been killed by that son of a bitch!"
"Don't you think I tried?" Gold asked angrily. "Silver, he's too smart for his own good! He had me cornered! There was NOTHING I could! Besides, I made it out of there ALIVE, didn't I? Isn't that all that matters?"
Silver sighed and said, "… You're right. I was just a bit too worried, that's all." Silver walked to the window and opened it up and climbed onto the windowsill. "Listen, Gold... The Pokedex Holders can not be taken down, none of us. So, next time, if you find yourself in trouble like that, you NEED to contact one of us. If anyone of us is defeated, we'll be in serious trouble. Keep your head and watch out for that guy. Don't do anything rash that'll cause attention to crowd around you. This guy will wipe you out in less than instant, remember that."
As Silver jumped from his second story window, Gold rubbed his temples and said to himself, "They just don't understand... That bastard was more powerful than ANYONE I've faced before..." As Gold laid back and thought about what was going on, he knew this wasn't going to be the last time he saw that Masked Man, as Silver had warned. But, as he closed his eyes, he realized that this wasn't any different from facing the Reddosuta Shikaku. Machine had told him that the Reddosuta Shikaku are ruthless killers and were known to attack their target's friends if they were to get in the way. "Heh. What a terrible series of events." Gold then faded off into a deep sleep, exhausted from simply talking to Machine and the others as well as Silver.