As our heroes’ ship arrives at Paladin Island, Cilan is surprised to learn that his brothers Chili and Cress are on their way to the island as well. While Ash, Iris, and Cilan wait for them to arrive, they are approached by an Abomasnow. Cilan’s Pansage offers some of its berries to the towering Pokémon—and it responds by attacking! Its Trainer, an arrogant woman named Morana, scolds our heroes for getting too close to her Abomasnow, and it turns out she’s the reason Chili and Cress are coming to the island.
They tell Cilan that Morana challenged them at the Striaton Gym, with an unusual request: if she won, she wanted them to turn over the entire Gym to her! Chili’s hot temper got the better of him, and he agreed to the challenge. The battles didn’t go well for the brothers, though—Morana’s Mamoswine overcame a type disadvantage to defeat Chili’s Pansear, and then her Glalie took down Cress’s Panpour in short order. Now, she’s here to challenge Cilan, the third Gym Leader brother, to complete her victory and claim the Striaton Gym for herself!
Iris advises Cilan to use Crustle in the battle, since its Rock-type moves are strong against the Ice-type Pokémon Morana seems to favor. But he’s determined to defend his Gym with his dearest partner, Pansage. To justify that decision, he offers an eloquent account of their history together, including their travels with Ash and Iris. And soon, it’s Battle Time!
Morana sends out her Abomasnow as expected, and of course Cilan brings out Pansage. After a few attacks, Cilan offers a critical evaluation of Morana’s partnership with her Abomasnow—it lacks warmth and caring, so the two of them aren’t as effective a team as they could be. He talks about how important it is for a Trainer to connect with a Pokémon’s heart, the way he and Pansage have connected. Morana isn’t interested in connecting—she just wants to win, and she interrupts his speech with a devastating attack that leaves Pansage frozen! But the sun’s rays—and Cilan’s voice—can still reach Pansage through the ice, and it breaks free with a powerful SolarBeam. Morana is too stunned to react, and Pansage’s next attack leaves Abomasnow unable to battle. Cilan has won, and the Striaton brothers get to keep their Gym!
As Chili and Cress prepare to head back to Unova, Cilan wonders if he should come with them and get back to being a Gym Leader. But his brothers assure him that everything will be fine—as long as Cilan is enjoying his journey, they want him to keep traveling with Ash and Iris. And that’s just what happens, as their voyage to the Kanto region continues!