Prologue: A view from the Other Side

The Realm of Ghosts is a chaotic, unstable place. A rich tapestry of disparate elements created both by the Spirits themselves and various otherworldly magicks, the resulting reality is one devoid of logic, reason or sense; where the laws of physics and nature do not apply. Merely gazing carelessly at the realm is liable to drive a mortal mind to insanity.

Within all the mania, there is a place of calm. A tiny part of the realm, but still sprawling over many hundreds of acres, there lies a large courtyard, surrounded on all sides by thick, dense forest. Despite rarely seeing any sun, the courtyard is covered in well-kept lawn; providing a rich, fertile ground for all sorts of games and activities; while the trees that make up the surrounding forest are healthy and bushy, providing complete coverage from the horrors that lie beyond.

At the far end of this vast space, about three-quarters along the vertical, there lies a large, sprawling mansion, spreading far in all directions. A wood and stone construction from an age long forgotten, the mansion has a very spooky appearance, aided somewhat by small elements of disrepair – a few loose tiles, some rotten and damaged timbers… yet despite these blemishes, it retains a timeless charm; and one could still imagine it as a perfectly habitable location, with any faults easily fixable.

At the very top of the mansion stands a large study and bedroom, owned and inhabited by the mansion’s master, a Gengar by the name of Jinji. Here, Jinji plans out various hauntings and fun activities, to carry out alongside his family, a vast group of various other Ghost Pokémon who have set up home within his realm under his watch. Jinji is not only the owner of the mansion; but through his many magical abilities and inventive nature, it is he who created this very section of the Ghost Realm, many millenia ago. The intention of the realm was to provide a safe space; a logical, comfortable location whereby new Ghosts can, under Jinji’s guidance, come to terms with the realities of their existence and the very nature of being a Ghost; and get to grips with their newfound form and the powers it brings, while sheilding them to deal with the insanity that lies beyond. Jinji acts as a mentor and a guide, helping younger spirits to feel comfortable and accept their fates; as well as feel accepted in death; and he extends this courtesy to any good-natured soul who is willing to accept his guidance and is moral in nature.

That is not to say that Jinji is himself a very serious spirit! Like any Gengar, Jinji is very mischievous, and takes a fun-loving approach to existence. A day isn’t complete until someone has been scared witless or had some naughty trick played upon them; and anyone is fair game – even his fellow Ghosts! Jinji is also very childish at heart, and regularly ends up – as does the space around him many a time – covered in sludge and slime as a result of his various pranks. Luckily, the Ghosts are used to his antics; and often attempt to return the favour with tricks, games and foolery of their own. These are not always successful, Jinji being as he is a wise spirit who has seen many tricks in his lifetime, and whose experience makes him very difficult to fool; but he enjoys the attempts nonetheless. Jinji is not infallible however, and there are many occasions where he has found himself caught in an impromptu explosion or his room coated in sludge – pranks he has also pulled himself. Being Spirits, and thus incapable of harm, very little is off limits when it comes to fun and games with each other, Jinji’s only rule being that if the prank takes place in his own room, it must be cleaned up before you leave – regardless of who instigated it.

When it comes to interacting with living beings, however, every Ghost who resides in Jinji’s mansion follows a very strict code of morals, which is taught to any new Ghosts who join them and must be committed fully to heart. The strongest of these is mutual respect and karma. A Ghost must never physically harm a mortal who has meant no harm to a Ghost, nor should they place them into situations where harm is the most likely outcome. A Ghost may defend themselves if threatened, but should seek to avoid conflict unless this is not possible. If directly challenged, however, a Ghost is permitted not to hold back. A Ghost may also not seek to change the fate of a mortal being, unless they feel the situation befalling them is genuinely undeserved. There is also a rule, not enforced by Jinji but rather the nature of the Ghost Realm itself, which every Ghost knows full well – a living being who enters the Ghost Realm, may never return alive. It is for this reason that the realms very rarely cross.