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| The Final Showdown V
The Final Showdown V or Crime and Punishment (Japanese: 最終超決戦V The Final Battle IV or 罪と罰 Crime and Punishment) is the 264th round of the Pokémon Adventures manga.
Groudon and Kyogre have left to continue their eternal slumber. However, while Kyogre went back to the Seafloor Cavern, Groudon has chose to make Mt. Chimney its new resting place. At the Pokémon Association headquarters, Captain Stern and the Association director confirm that since the two Pokémon have left, it means that they no longer intend to battle each other. Although slightly irritated that he had to have Norman help defeat Groudon and Kyogre with Rayquaza, the director thanks the Gym Leaders, Elite Four, as well as Ruby and Sapphire for their contributions. The director decides to inform the entire Hoenn region of the good news.
Wallace calls and reveals that Steven had fallen in the battle. The director tells Wallace to take Steven to the hospital, but Wallace states that it's too late because Steven has died. Wallace guesses that the strain of controlling Regirock, Regice, and Registeel was too much for Steven, causing his death. Phoebe notes that on the slab, it was written that the three Pokémon were sealed away by people out of fear for them.
Sidney and Drake assume that the reason they were sealed was due to the danger of controlling them, and that if not controlled properly, they could become a threat like Groudon and Kyogre. Glacia notices that after Steven died, the team used to summon Regirock, Regice, and Registeel had fallen apart. Immediately, Regirock, Regice, and Registeel knock the Elite Four and Wallace off of them and fly off into parts unknown.
Back in Sootopolis, Ruby tries to get a response from his father, Norman, but to no avail. Rayquaza flies past them, knocking Ruby and Norman to the ground. Norman begins to speak, and states that since Rayquaza is an ancient Pokémon like Groudon and Kyogre, it's impossible for it to be fully controlled. Norman reveals that Groudon and Kyogre can only be controlled because of the Red and Blue Orbs, but since no such Orb exists for Rayquaza, it can't be controlled like the other two.
Norman states that the Pokémon Association had been researching Rayquaza ever since they captured it, even trying to create a Green Jewel for it, but failed. Norman tells Ruby that Rayquaza escaped on the day of his Gym Leader inauguration test, which is why he was forced to wait five years before he could take it again. In his head, Ruby realizes that the reason why he couldn't take the test was because of a punishment, and questions why he would have to be punished for Rayquaza escaping. Ruby wonders why a person like his father would have to be punished for something like that, which makes his realize that he must have taken the blame off of someone else. Ruby asks Norman if the person he took the blame of was him, a question Norman confirms as yes.
Norman flashes back to five years ago, where, in the Johto region, Ruby's mother celebrates with Norman over his upcoming Gym Leader inauguration test. Birch jokingly points out that anything can happen during the test. They wonder where the children are, only to see the two of them playing together. When Norman decides to go the area where he will take the test early, the research tower near them begins shaking.
Immediately, Rayquaza flies out of the tower and begins attacking. Norman manages to fend of Rayquaza's attacks, but it escapes and flies off. Norman and Birch go inside the research tower and find an unconscious Salamence inside. They find an injured scientist, who reveals that the Salamence suddenly burst into the tower and began destroying everything. Norman notices that the Salamence is injured, but the scientist states that it was injured when it burst into the tower.
Upon checking the Salamence's wounds, Norman quickly realizes that the person who defeated it was Ruby. Due to Ruby being unlike most children, who would run from something like a Salamence, Ruby would stay and fight. Despite Ruby managing to defeat it, he didn't capture or prevent it from escaping, which allowed it to roam free and go on a rampage. At the Gym Leader test hall, the Pokémon Association director and Wattson impatiently wait for Norman to arrive. Suddenly, someone bursts into the room to inform them about what happened at the research tower. When the director asks who set Rayquaza free, Norman steps in and lies by stating that it was he who did it.
A few days later, the Pokémon Association tell Norman that he banned from taking the test for five years. They tell Norman that his punishment is to find and recapture Rayquaza, which Norman begrudgingly accepts. When Norman asks why the Association was researching Rayquaza, the director tells him that it's none of his business, fueling their contempt of each other.
Later, Norman tells his sad family that he has to leave, but doesn't tell them why. As Norman prepares to leave, Ruby tries to get his father to take him with. Norman tells Ruby that he cannot, and that he must continue his training without his father to guide him. Although Ruby continues to try and get his father to take him with him, Norman has his Slaking restrain Ruby as he takes off. Riding on his Flygon, Norman searches for Rayquaza and approaches a small island.
Back in the present, Ruby asks Norman why he sacrificed everything just to protect him. Norman doesn't speak, but Ruby realizes after seeing Courtney's Memory Lighter that Norman did it because he loves him. Norman collapses, leading to Ruby shouting out his name his horror. Suddenly, an explosion bursts forth from the Cave of Origin's ruins.
Back on Mirage Island, Tate and Liza express joy over Ruby and Sapphire's victory. They note that Juan had a prediction of both of them fighting two powerful foes, but since Ruby stopped Groudon and Kyogre alone, it didn't come true. Juan agrees with this, but wonders if the foes he thought of were not Groudon and Kyogre.
Back at Wallace's aircar, Plusle and Minun begin shooting electricity everywhere, much to Sapphire's confusion. Sapphire quickly realizes that they must sense something happening at Sootopolis. Back at Ruby's location, Maxie and Archie have appeared before him and prepare to attack. Ruby realizes that after he and Sapphire knocked the Red and Blue Orbs out of their bodies, they went to hide in the Cave of Origin. Maxie and Archie attack Ruby, and state that anyone who will stand in their way will die.
- During Norman's flashback, Norman identifies Salamence as having been hit by Hyper Beam amongst other moves, suggesting that Ruby's Nana had attacked it. However, as a Poochyena, Nana would not have been able to use the attack.