Ruby and Sapphire arrive at Slateport City, finding no sign of Steven Stone. Ruby, relieved to finally get away from her, tells Sapphire that nothing good happens with he hangs around her and then he leaves; Sapphire shouts after him, infuriated at his lack of gratitude for the free ride to Slateport.
The scene cuts to Marge and Mitch, relaxing slightly after their success on the Abandoned Ship. They are meeting with their leader, Maxie, who has a bottle in his hand and a blush on his cheeks. They implore him for immediate destruction, imagining the annihilation of the sea, but Maxie admonishes them for being so rash and tells them that Mack is on his way; though he appears to consider their fantasies rash, since he later suggests nearly the same thing, it could be he was admonishing them for trying to move on without Mack.
Mack arrives, reporting that the Kaien I is ninety-five percent complete. Maxie hurls his bottle in triumph, ordering his admins to show the world the power of Team Magma. He also encourages them to "burn," his Camerupt unleashing flame as victorious emphasis.In Slateport City, Ruby and his Mudkip are walking along a path when Mudkip suddenly evolves into Marshtomp. Ruby is happy because he caught the moment on camera, recording Marshtomp's evolution. He proceeds to take photos of Marshtomp, saying that though Marshtomp is not very beautiful, he is worthy of the professor's research. He then comments that Marshtomp has grown stronger, just like Ruby's other Pokémon (whom he has had since childhood and so is very close to).
A short man approaches Ruby. He makes Ruby show him his Pokémon, whom he declares magnificent. He declares that he is the President of the PokéFan Club and will make Ruby an honorary member. He declares that it is a waste to battle with such adorable Pokémon, immediately gaining Ruby's affection. They bond over their shared love for Pokémon and dislike for battle.
Ruby tells the President that he wants to participate in Hoenn's contests, prompting the President to drag Ruby to Slateport's Contest Hall. However, they refuse Ruby admission because he doesn't have a Contest Pass and because he hasn't won in any ranks preceeding their Hyper Rank. The President is outraged, but Ruby doesn't mind as much, realizing that a fuss could attract his father's attention.Instead, Ruby and the President decide to make PokéBlocks. Ruby proudly shows the President all the berries he's gathered. They grab two more people, as the more people you make PokéBlocks with the higher quality hte PokéBlock. However, one of these people is Captain Stern, the target of the Team Magma Fires. Mack suggests that they just kidnap all four of them, as it would be difficult to just take Captain Stern. Mitch sends in his Torkoal, unleashing smoke and knocking everybody out.