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icomeanon6
April 28th, 2008, 07:26 PM
ages 12 and up
April FFC: "Wander"

This is a one-shot for the Fan Fiction Challenge, it's a tad short, but I figure that's better than having a ton of filler.

*****
The Inner Struggle

By IComeAnon6

Grigori walked across the vast and barren plain, with nothing for him to acknowledge as company, save the wind. And even that was poor company; it blew loose bits of grass into his eyes, causing his frustration to grow to even more than it had previously. His hand suddenly brushed against the ball attached to his belt, and he was reminded of what he had tried so hard to forget through aimless walking. He sighed, and recalled images that he had tried to block forever. He shook it off, and continued to take his steps. He took a glance behind himself, and saw his footprints trailing behind. And yet he did not see footprints, but rather pools of ink. Then he looked at his hands, and saw that they too were stained. No matter how many steps he took, the ominous trail followed him with utter certainty.

He stopped, and removed the ball from his belt. He looked it over, wondering why he did not think of it as a living thing. It was the vessel for his monster, the monster that they gave him without his asking, also the monster that he wanted to be so far away from. Could he toss it aside as if it were just a knick-knack best suited for disposal? Of course not, his conscious wouldn’t allow it. The monster he wanted to forget would surely die then. And why did he care? He had made it subject to so much pain already, what would it be but a quiet death to it? The fights were increasing in severity, and after every single one Grigori had to look at the pain in his monster’s eyes. He also had to look at its gaping wounds that made him sick to his stomach. He would have the monster retreat into its spherical container all the quicker, even though he knew he should be paying more attention to it.

He hated himself for it. No matter what seemed to happen, he couldn’t care that much for the thing. Even the sorrow he felt just then did not come from feelings for his monster, but rather out of self-loathing. He wanted to think of it as a person, but he couldn’t. Perhaps this was caused by society, the culture of Kanto, which told him that these creatures were only suited for participating in their League. Grigori wanted to call the League nothing but a cruel façade, but who would listen to him? Kanto needed a way to control the surrounding monsters, participating in this league was his civic responsibility. They told him to capture as many monsters as he could, yet he wouldn’t. He couldn’t bear to put such pain on any more creatures. And yet, without having more monsters, all the more stress was put on the one he had.

And so we find the paradox of Grigori’s thinking. He wanted himself to believe that his pain was caused by compassion for the monsters, yet he knew deep down that he felt none, he could not care enough for even his own monster. Grigori’s mind then reached the climax of frustration, and he threw the ball out in front of himself with an angry yell. There was a flash of red light, and standing there above the opened ball was a small dog-like creature with fur colored like a bright flame. “Just leave, dammit! I don’t want to do this anymore!”

The dog, commonly called Growlithe, did not leave. It rather just stood there, meeting Grigori’s eyes with its own. There was a scar that marred the skin around one of its eyes, left from a wound that the doctors could not fix. It gave its head a subtle tilt, as if trying to express something. “Why don’t you just go? I’m not going to train you! I just don’t care!”

Growlithe still did not leave, but rather stepped forward slightly, keeping its constant gaze on Grigori’s eyes, which were now starting to well with tears. Grigori muttered something half under his breath, but still loud enough for Growlithe to hear. He then felt the ink on his hands begin to drip, starting to make a puddle on the ground. “Don’t you want to leave? What good have I ever done to you?”

He fell to his knees, and the shameful ink flowed from his hands at a faster rate. His tears fell as well, mixing with the stain of sin on the plain. Growlithe continued to draw closer, not showing any sign of wanting to leave his side. “What are you thinking? Staying with me doesn’t help you.”

And then Grigori was struck with a thought. Growlithe was not thinking about what would help itself, it was thinking about what would help him. And then Grigori thought about what would be best for Growlithe, and the answer of course came to staying with him. There was no doubt that Growlithe would encounter enemies and predators in the wild, at least with Grigori he could always retreat and live to start out again. Grigori made a decision that day. He stood up, and walked with Growlithe to whatever adventures they might meet. He stroked its hot fur, and finally found not just a monster, but a friend. As he wandered away from that place, he saw that his hands were clean, and that the black trail behind him gradually faded off into the distance.

*****

Post Office Buddy
April 28th, 2008, 07:42 PM
Nicely done. I give it a 10, for more reasons than using Rasputin's real name (I don't know if you meant to or not, but I liked it.)

Overall, it was a good story. I like how you portrayed Grigori's guilty conscience by using the dripping ink. It was a great device to use, and I'm glad to find that you didn't abandon it at the end, but told the reader that the ink disappeared after his life-changing revelation.

The development was amazing. You didn't go off topic, didn't jump around, but stuck to the story. I like to see that, and all I have is praise for this.

I don't think I have seen a chaptered fiction of yours anywhere, but this fiction you have written has made me determined to find one if you have posted one. If you have already, then please PM me the link. If not, then I suggest you write one. You are quite a talented writer, and I believe you could awe the board with more content like this.

EDIT: Just saw your sig. I'll take a look at it tomorrow as I am far too tired right now.