At the gates if the Bokulani Observatory, I met the childhood friend of Professor Kukui. He referred to by himself as "Molayne" and assured me that I was in good hands learning things from the Prof. He challenged me to a pokemon battle--my toughest one yet.
He used three tough steel pokemon in battle: Skarmory, Alola Dugtrio, and Metang. This is where I realized, for probably the fourth or twelfth time, that my team lacks focus because it's too damn large. I had prepared for an electric trial and so all I had with me were Grimer, Steenee, Sylveon, and Misdreavus. Sylveon and Steenee came out of the battle with top marks. Neither of them was able to do much damage against their opponents (steel resists grass AND fairy moves), but they had the appropriate support moves in order to make the match an eventual success. I mean, thank Arceus for potions and revives, but I was quite impressed by my packmen's abilities to tank hits and rebuff opponents.
However, the battle helped illustrate to me how redundant Grimer and Misdreavus were on my squad. I decided to send the both of them into training with Bagon--to be called upon if I ever need them--and thereby lowering my active team to eight players.
During the battle, Steenee evolved into Tsareena. I fucking love this pokemon. It's strong and it's really quite useful as a supporting role as well. I currently have it with Trop Kick (a powerful physical grass attack which always lowers the opponent's attacking stat), Low Sweep (a strong fighting attack which always lowers the opponent's speed stat), Reflect (which doubles your team's physical defenses for 5 turns), and Light Screen (which doubles your team's special defenses for 5 turns).
Also, it's fucking adorable.
Fukui and Molayne congratulated me on a well-fought match and let me enter the observatory for my next trial. Apparently the running gag is that everyone knows that Kukui's alter ego is the Masked Royal except for Kukui's wife. Kukui thinks he's been doing a great job keeping it a secret that he moonlights as the undefeated champion of the Battle Royale league. He hasn't fooled anyone other than his lady friend.
Current Squad:Brionne/Pako Pako/lvl 26
Salandit/Sassy Sally/lvl 27
Sylveon/Star Fighter/lvl 28
Trumbeak/Pip Pip/lvl 27
Pokedex: 126 caught