Thread: [Pokémon] Here Comes The Sun
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Old May 20th, 2011 (12:23 PM).
IanDonyer's Avatar
IanDonyer
Time to kick ass? Definitely.
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Remember? Yeah, I live at that place! At the time, with the thing! =D
Gender: Male
Nature: Modest
Chapter One is the longest chapter I have ever written of anything, and is the longest chapter so far in the story. Enjoy.

here comes the sun
Chapter One: A.N.T.I.





“Spaghetti!”

Elizabeth Faith Scott tended to have cases of what she liked to call, “Spasmodic Tourette Syndrome”. Whenever something surprised her, she cried out the first word that came to mind -- and this morning, that word was apparently “spaghetti”. She sat bolt upright in bed, her eyes darting around the room to locate the source of the noise that had startled her awake and kept its loud, obnoxious blaring going.

Suddenly, she realized exactly what it was, and groaned. Her hand reached out toward the black box that was the source, switching the alarm clock off. Its red numbers displayed that accursed time that hurt her eyes to look at: Seven thirty in the morning. She slid her legs out of bed, pulling herself off toward the floor. It was a difficult act. It felt like the bed was clinging to her, begging her to stay in and sleep for just a little while longer. She was tempted to follow its pitiful whines, but she knew better than that. Her father would kill her if she was late for school.

And so she walked to the bathroom on tired muscles. She disrobed and got into the shower, turning on the knobs- she was going to kill Sierra. Her sister, Sierra, was famous for using the shower wrong, by leaving the little pully-thingamajig that switched the system to go between shower and bath pulled up, so that instead of the water coming first out of the faucet beneath, it would come out the shower-head, soaking whoever was unfortunate enough to be beneath it. She was immediately doused with freezing cold water, causing her to yelp.

“Graduation!” she exclaimed. It hit her then, and she turned on the hot water knob with a sigh. She was already awake, so why stop? She took her morning shower with the realization that she could have slept in some, because she had graduated from Pallet Academy last week.

IDIOT, IDIOT, IDIOT! she mentally cursed herself.

She walked out of the bathroom dressed in a towel, and after a few moments of gathering clothing, she dropped that and slipped into the new stuff. It was, quite literally, new clothing -- in her opinion, it was also insanely cute. A pink shirt dressed her torso, while a pair of white shorts with a red stripe down each side covered up her lower half down to the knees. She walked back into the bathroom, combing her brown, shoulder-length hair and brushing her teeth. Finally, she walked out of the bathroom and made her way downstairs.

Elizabeth slipped down the stairs with a good bit of grace, which honestly surprised her. She was usually a bit clumsy in the mornings, and even past the clumsy stage, she was never skilled on her feet, so she wondered exactly what it was that made that different this morning. Luck, she supposed.

She sighed, walking into the kitchen to find it occupied, though only by the smiling, jaded face of her father. He nodded toward her. “Up a bit early, are we? You know you could have slept in.”

She shook her head. “Yeah, I sort of figured that out about... ten minutes too late, while I was in the shower.”

Her father laughed at that. She bonked him lightly on the head for that little episode as she walked past him.

“Oww! C’mon, Beth. It was funny,” her father mumbled.

“Doesn’t mean you should laugh at it!” she teased, at the same time hopping up to swipe the box of cereal on top of the refrigerator, then doing the same to reach the cupboard where she grabbed a plastic bowl. She poured the cereal and her milk, and on her way back to the table, she picked up a spoon from the silverware drawer, then finally sat down in a chair beside her father. He set down his newspaper for a moment, reaching over and planting a small kiss on her forehead.

“I’m just kiddin’, honey,” he said. “You CAN go back to sleep now if you want. I’ll wake you up at nine.”

She shook her head. “And go through the trouble of getting up again? I’d much rather just lose that hour and a half of...” She yawned. “...sleep.”

“Of course,” he said, wearing a large grin. She leaned in, taking in a quick spoonful of cereal.

“So, where’s Sierra at? Still asleep?” she asked.

“Of course not. She woke up around the same time I did... which was, really, about half an hour ago. She ate quick and said she would be going out for a walk.”

Beth raised an eyebrow. “Eh? She hasn’t come back yet?”

Christopher Scott shook his head.

“You want me to go out and try to find her when I’m done?” Beth knew exactly where she was. It was where she went whenever she had things on her mind, and had confided this to Beth once when they were younger.

He nodded. “If you wouldn’t mind. I wanna make sure she hasn’t run off just to be a pain or something... especially with A.N.T.I. today.”

Her eyes widened. She had forgotten all about A.N.T.I. She quickly gobbled down the rest of her cereal in silence, speeding over to the kitchen sink and tossing the dirty utensils in. She walked over to her father and kissed him on the forehead. “I’ll go find her. Be back soon.”

“Thanks, honey.” He smiled, and waved to her as she grabbed her purse from in front of the front door and darted out.




Sierra Hope Scott kicked flexed her knee upward, her foot connected with the tree in front of her, sending out a small burst of dust. She switched to the other foot with expert precision and timing, then planted both her feet down, her gloved hand colliding lightly with the base.

Sierra was pissed off for multiple reasons. The primary was anger at her father, because of what he had done. Sure, she would have done it herself, but she wasn’t going to let him know that now. He had forcefully enrolled them in that stupid... whatever it was called. That initiative thing- A.N.T.I. That was it. Annual New Trainer Initiative. The guy was trying to make her decisions for her, and that angered her. He had even confronted her about it, saying it was necessary -- whether she liked it or not.

She was also somewhat angry at her sister, Beth. But much less so than at her father, and only because of her overly annoying, excitable outlook toward the prospect. She still loved her sister, though. The love toward her father was a bit more debatable.

She turned herself away from the tree for a moment, then closed her eyes. She inhaled sharply, exhaling with an equal amount of ferocity. Breathing exercises were originally all ******** to her, but when her anger management classes had taught them and she was forced to start, she found they helped quite a bit.

So, no matter what she did, she would be heading toward the old Oak Laboratory today, and picking up a Pokemon, along with a trainer’s license, and Pokedex. She looked toward the southeast, where that laboratory was located, and was surprised by the lack of people. A.N.T.I. usually drew in a humongous crowd, even in the smaller towns like Lavender and Cinnabar Island. She supposed people ignored Pallet Town, even after the legendary Red had been revealed to be from Pallet to the public.

She turned around and slammed her foot into the tree one more time. People sucked. She then heard someone speak, and groaned -- not only was it another person at an extremely inopportune time, but she didn’t recognize the voice.

“You look cool. Are you, like, a karate master?”

It was the voice of a little boy. She supposed she did look like some sort of fighter in her abuse of the poor tree that served as her safe haven, but her actual clothing -- a red dress shirt buttoned up entirely except for one or two down at the bottom, and jean shorts -- didn’t make her look much like an expert, rather a wannabe with a really weird dressing habit.

She nodded to the kid, however. “Yes. And if you don’t screw off, I’ll kick your butt up that tree and hang you on a branch by your underwear.”

“Cool!” the kid exclaimed.

She raised an eyebrow. Did the kid really find it cool? Was he some sort of masochist? “...Not cool. It’ll hurt. A lot.”

The kid nodded. “Of course, but you’re that strong!”

“...What are you up to, kid?” She wasn’t going to fall for it. He was obviously old enough to understand that no one but movie superheroes had that much strength.

The kid shrugged. “You just looked like you needed a pick-me-up. Or a hug. You want a hug, lady?”

“No.”

“Fine. But if you ever need one, you can come find me. I’ll be at the housing projects. Y’know, where all those A.N.T.I. people are campin’.”

“A.N.T.I. people? People actually came?”

“Yeah! They’re all just cramped up in one spot, since Pallet’s so small.” The boy nodded to her, then ran off toward the south.

She stood there for a few moments. So people did come after all. How interesting.

“Sis! C’mon. You forgotten ‘bout A.N.T.I. or something? We need to get home. Get prepared.”

And there was Beth, her sister, jogging up toward her, her long brown hair bouncing, her chest heaving. That excited, yet slightly worried look in her eyes. She wore that new outfit Dad had bought her for today, the pink shirt, shorts and her favorite, sky blue, windbreaker.

“Forget A.N.T.I.,” she mumbled.

“But dad said-”

Sierra cut her off. “Dad says a lot of things. Not all of them are good.”

Beth narrowed her eyes. “Why do you always get so angry at him?”

“Because I always get so angry at him. Now, drop the subject. I guess I’ll go.” Sierra wiped the sweat off her forehead with the back of her hand, realizing that it was odd for her to be sweating like this in rather nice weather, but ignoring that. She threw an arm around Beth’s shoulder and hugged her for a moment, then began walking in the direction of their home. “But only because I love you.”



So the two got home to a father who was relatively mellow about the whole subject. All Sierra got for being out for half an hour when promising a ten minute walk was a, “I wish you’d tell me if you plan to be out for that long”, so she was somewhat satisfied. Though knowing her, she probably didn’t plan to be out that long in the first place, so the point was void.

The two of them were pretty much packed as good as they should have been, leaving them only the duty to check and make sure they had everything. Their dad had gone through the expenses of buying them each three of each “necessity-medicine”, as he called them -- three potions, paralyze heals, antidotes, burn heals, ice heals and awakenings, as well as one technical machine for each of them to start off with. The move was Return, to teach their first Pokemon. It was a sweet gesture, and had also been an expensive one, so they weren’t going to get much else besides the backpacks these were contained in.

Both had packed up all of their clothing, and the necessities, alongside anything else they individually wanted to take along. Beth had taken a couple of books, while Sierra had grabbed a few empty notebooks, as well as pens and pencils. She was a writer. She loved poetry, dark and depressing, while Beth loved lighthearted novels. That was something neither got about each other.

The rest of the day up until three in the evening was spent relaxing. Beth and Sierra hung out together, talking about the journey prospect. Things they would do, what would happen if such and such occurred, and of course- what if they met up with famous whatshisname? Eeek! They laughed, joked and overall enjoyed themselves, much like they always had together, and as they thought, always would.




thump thump thump thump

“C’mon on in, dad,” Sierra muttered.

Her father peeked his head into the door, nodding toward her. “It’s three. We need to go ahead and go, alright? Grab your purses. No need for the backpacks yet, of course.”

Beth nodded to her father, while Sierra just went ahead and did as asked. Their father shut the door, and Beth leaped up to her feet to grab at hers. The two went out the door, following their father downstairs.

And out the front door they went, walking south.

On the way, their father began to speak. “So, how are you two holding up? Nervous? Afraid?” He laughed. “I know I sure am.”

Beth smiled anxiously. “Very funny, dad.”

“Hillarious,” Sierra chimed in. “It’s not your initiation, now is it?”

Beth looked at Sierra, raising an eyebrow. “I think that’s the point-”

“No, it isn’t,” Chris Scott interrupted, “but it’s the initiation of my two daughters. My two healthy, strong, young daughters leaving off on a journey through Kanto- and I can’t join ‘em. It’s upsetting, yet... you guys know I’m proud of you both, right?”

Beth’s anxiousness slacked off a bit, but was still present, nagging at her. The mask of love from her father lessened the blow, though.

Sierra said nothing on the subject, but both Beth and Sierra confirmed their approval of this question with a swift, decisive nod. The rest of the walk was silent, but Beth noticed as they trekked through the winding dirt roads of Pallet Town, the both of them seemed to gravitate closer to their father’s side.



The Annual New Trainer Initiative was being held in front of the Old Oak Laboratory, “Old Oak” being the nickname of the elderly Professor Samuel Oak who worked there with a three-man crew, studying Pokemon. He had been selected to speak at A.N.T.I. this year, and it was admittedly one thing that Sierra was looking forward to. She had always respected Old Oak, who had helped the greatest trainer known to the world this day, even. It was a large event, bustling with people fluttering about like busy little mice with missions of their own. They had set out on their own mission, one of finding a frigging seat.

They finally found a spot in the fifth row. Pretty good spot, too, for a crowded event like ANTI. They sat and waited for a bit while everybody took their seats and the people up on the stage in front of them took their places, setting microphones up. Sierra recognized a few faces: Furn Ace of Cinnabar Island’s gym, the Pokemon Fan Club chairman Tito Vasquez, Professor’s Assistant Autumn Leaf, and Professor Samuel Oak, of course. The event finally started off with a bang- literally. A gong had been placed in the background, which was hit and rang through the ears of the crowd to start off the event and gain the people’s attention.

The assistant, Leaf, approached the front of the stage. She straightened out her lab coat, fiddling around with the microphone. She cleared her throat and began to speak. Her voice was filled with a surprising timidness.

“Testing, testing... uhm, okay! Sorry, folks, this would, uhm, be my first time doing a speech... sure, I helped Red take down Team Rocket, but I can’t even manage to start off a speech right! Heh... heheh...”

This earned a few giggles from the crowd, but a lot of respect from Sierra. Leaf had helped Red in the famous Rocket siege of Silph Corporation, the major producer of trainer’s items for the Indigo continent. She had also gone with him to finish off the side-project of Rocket on the Sevii Islands.

“...Anyways. Today is May first, twenty-eleven, and the day in which many legends will be made! I’m sure of that. Can we get a cheer for that?”

Many people, Sierra and Beth threw out a big whoop for that notion.

“A.N.T.I. is an organization that supports the Pallet Laboratory, but that isn’t the only reason me and Old Oak are here today, believe it or not. We both love to see the initiation of new greats, see the growth of the children we whisk off tonight.”

“Woo!”

“Yeah!”

“You tell ‘em, Leaf!”

“Take it off!” Sierra audibly giggled at this one.

“...That man is right!” a red-faced Leaf said. “I will take the microphone off, and hand it on to Professor Samuel H. Oak!”

She removed the microphone from the stand, walking to the seat of Professor Oak. He shook his head, standing up and walking to the front of the stage with his cane. The gray-haired, wrinkle-faced old man greeted the crowd with a smile on his face and a wave with his free hand. Leaf quickly followed, placing the microphone back on the stage and adjusting the stand.

Oak cleared his throat, and the crowd went even quieter.

“Hello, folks. My name is Samuel Harris Oak, and exactly nine years ago on this date, I gave a Bulbasaur to ‘Red’ O’Brien, and a Charmander to ‘Blue’ Oak, my grandson, as well as a Squirtle to Autumn Leaf- my assistant here. The three of them left that night, heading out for the journey of a life time.”

The crowd roared wildly at this, but Oak stomped his cane onto the wooden stage, gaining the attention of the crowd once again. “Thank you, but save the applause for when I am done.”

Sierra loved the fact that it was an order, not a request.

“...Now.” Oak looked toward the north, past the crowd. “It seems as if it were yesterday that this happened. The three of them were originally meant to complete the Pokedex- which, for the Kanto ‘dex, they did, mind you- but they became legends. Now they are household names. Red has become known to be the greatest trainer ever to exist- my grandson Blue runs the Viridian City Gym- and I even get to see dear Autumn daily. It is truly amazing to see what the simple act of giving someone a Pokemon can do. Autumn, dear, please send out Nidoran.”

Leaf took a ball out of her lab coat, and pressed a button in the center with her thumb. A magnificent burst of white light shot forth, materializing into the form of a tiny blue Pokemon that Sierra couldn’t quite recognize by sight, but knew easily by its name- it was a female Nidoran, tiny blue creatures with poison pins around their body. The female ad no horn, unlike the male.

“Pokemon are creatures with unlimited potential, especially with a human at their side. Note, I don’t say controlling them. That is something you initiates must remember. They call you Pokemon Trainers, and this is certainly true. You train your Pokemon to be better battlers, coordinators... whatever it is you wish to do. But keep in mind that your Pokemon teach you lessons as well.”

He hobbled around, pointing toward the sky with his cane for a moment, before thrusting it back down to keep his balance. “For instance, fifty years ago...”

“CAW!!!”

A furious cry roared through the skies, and the entire crowd, Sierra and Beth included, gasped and looked upward to see the source of this noise. They saw nothing, and a few people gave up on this, looking down on the stage.

“On the stage!” someone yelled, and the crowded shifted their attention: on the stage, floating in front of Oak, was a reddish bird, flapping its wings intensely to stay afloat. From the steady caws it released, Sierra could tell it was vicious-...ly fake. But everyone else seemed to be going for the facade for the moment, so she would act surprised as well.

“Oh, my!” Oak exclaimed. “Ferocious little fellow. This is the perfect chance to give an example! Nidoran, quickly!”

Beth seemed to be close to hyperventilation next to her, while her father sat back, his eyes wide, focused on the stage. She placed a hand on Beth’s shoulder.

“Potato salad!- Oh, Sierra, this is scary-”

“Beth. It’s fake. Old Oak owns a Spearow, remember?” Sierra soothed.

“...Oh- Oh! Clever..” Beth said, her voice echoing a bit more calm. Her breathing was stabilizing slowly.

Suddenly, the bird darted forward toward Oak’s chest. It was fast, and Sierra squinted to keep up with it. Nidoran jumped in front of it, taking the Peck attack with grace. The two of them crumpled to the floor of the stage, and Oak smiled widely.

“Fifty years ago, I ran into a Wild Spearow with my Nidoran at my side,” he said.

The two Pokemon on the stage got up. Nidoran walked to Oak’s side. The bird floated up to his side, then rested on his shoulder, nuzzling the old man’s hair affectionately. “Spearow could have blinded me. Took an eye out, maybe even killed me if I panicked well enough.”

He reached up with his free hand, gently stroking its head. “He taught me a simple lesson. Fright and adrenaline pounded it into my brain, and I still think of it to this day: Life can throw anything at you. Never be unprepared. It can cost you dearly.”

The crowd roared. They couldn’t help it, and Oak realized this apparently, as he did not try to stop them. It quieted down after a few minutes, and Oak began to speak again.

“We and Pokemon can live separately, in closing. But nowhere does it say that we can do so and still reach our full potential. To reach the pinnacle of potential, Pokemon need us-- and we need Pokemon. Be proud of what you’re doing today, children- or adults, even. You are about to set out on a quest that will change your lives forever, and much for the better. Some have tried to argue that coming into money is the best change possible. I guarantee you, that is false. But on this journey, you will grow wealthy. Wealthy with knowledge; wealthy with friendship; wealthy with experience, and most important of all, wealthy with memories that you will never forget! Hahaha!”

The crowd went wild. Cheers, whoops, claps, and of course, the few in the mixture that gave the Professor a standing ovation. The Professor hobbled over to his chair, assisted by Leaf. Soon, Tito Vasquez approached the mic, and the crowd allowed themselves to finally go silent, much to the relief of Sierra’s aching head.

“A.N.T.I. was founded five years ago with the funding of Pallet Laboratories, The Viridian Gym and an anonymous benefactor, all of which continue to donate today, in the spirit of the famous departure from this very town and of course, the age-old spirit of adventure. We wish you luck with your journeys, participants! At five o’clock, head inside the laboratory to receive your supplies. The event will be open, with such attractions as meeting the few famous faces here today, the arena, and other various games until 10:00 PM tonight! Please enjoy the day!”

After a short cheer, the crowd dispersed to do what they wanted. Beth and Sierra immediately went on to go to the inside of the lab, eager, but their father stopped them first- quickly, just to tell them that he would be waiting for them in the seating area, where pretty much no one would be, he joked with a smile.

So, the two rushed off and waited in the humongous line. It felt like hours to Sierra, though according to her watch, it was about one and a half of them. Finally, Sierra got to the front of the line she was in (it had split in to two when they entered the lab), and approached the lab assistant that was assisting the assistant assisting with A.N.T.I.

Thinking of this little description, she immediately bit her tongue lightly to stifle laughter. She still snorted. The assistant, though looking at her oddly for a moment, smiled. “Hello! Are you here to receive your new partner and the supplies?”

“No,” Sierra said. “I’m here to ask for directions to the bathroom.”

The assistant paused for a moment. “...Well, it’s, er-”

“I’m kidding. Yes.”

“Oh! Alright, then. Name?” The assistant began to type a few commands into the computer behind him. It was the way the system worked: you applied for what Pokemon you wanted beforehand, and the rest of the stuff was made as well, all stored in the computer storage system.

“Sierra Hope Scott.”

“Right! Just a second then, Miss Scott.” The assistant clicked and clacked on the keyboard, making a few motions with the mouse, and from a small slot in the hard drive, a flash of red light came out and materialized into a small card (which was her trainer card, complete with the picture she had sent in), and a Pokeball wih a small green leaf labeled on it. The assistant grabbed them, then walked over to a small pile of red machines and picked one up alongside a small booklet. Finally, he walked over to Sierra and handed it to her.

“Alright! There’s your Bulbasaur, Miss Scott, alongside your Pokedex, Instruction Booklet, and Trainer Card! You are officially a Pokemon Trainer! Good luck, and may your journey bear many wonderful fruits!”

“Thanks,” she murmured, and then rushed off toward the door. When she passed through the door, she heard Beth’s voice call after her, and the two of them rushed toward the seating section.

They spotted not just their father, but another familiar face there, waiting for them. A face that both Sierra and Beth recognized, and spoke in unison. “Matt?”

“So they do know you after all. Glad to hear you’re not a creeper,” their father teased.

“‘course not, Mr. Scott. Thanks for letting me know ‘bout your daughters being here, though... so glad to be able to do this.”

Matt was a handsome boy, throwing the idea of ‘fat’ out the window. He was a major weight-lifter, they both knew, and was well-sculpted because of it. His typical garb consisted of a tank top, his bare arms covered by a jacket that varied in colors (today it was white), and a pair of jeans.

“Do what?” Sierra asked.

“How ‘bout you first, Sierra? Ol’ buddy ol’ pal.”

“For what, Joyson?”

Matthew Joyson slipped his hand into his pocket, pulling out a Pokeball, pressing his thumb against the center. “Charmander! Let’s go!”

The Pokeball opened up and sent forth a flash of white light that materialized into an orange bipedal lizard with a tan stomach, and a tail tipped by fire.

“...Oh. I see.” Sierra grinned, pulling out her leaf-emblazoned ball. “Let’s get this going, then. Bulbasaur, time to fight!”



Matthew Joyson enjoyed two things in this world the most: women, and adrenaline. He had learned to appreciate the finer of the former through age, while he had learned to r of the former (in more sense than one), and learned through experience to appreciate the latter. And he felt like the luckiest man in the world right now, with access to both, right here in front of him.

“Type advantage won’t make a difference!” Sierra Scott exclaimed.

He looked down at the Pokemon in front of her. She was a quadrupedal blueish-green monster with a bulb on her back, but she sat on her hind legs, laziness evident in her eyes. He knew it was female because A.N.T.I. tended to give out starters of the same gender of the applicant. Maybe because they could potentially bond better? He didn’t really know the reasoning for it, in honesty.

He had met the sisters in the academy that the three of them had all gone too; He and Beth shared the same Math class. Matt had always been bad at the subject, while Beth had been pretty good, so he had always gone to her for help. He and Sierra had met for real when Beth had introduced her to him, and he and Sierra had caught on as friends pretty quick. She was a cool chick. Beth was pretty nice, too.

“Who said I needed it? Check your Pokedex. The starters they gave out know no ‘special’ attacks; they’re, at the moment, physical fighters whether you like it or not.”

He could see a disappointed look in Sierra’s eyes at this revelation, and he smiled with a fake cockiness he put on just to try and return that fire in her eyes that he liked so much. It came back quick.

“Bulbasaur, tackle that overgrown lizard! I bet you can set Matt’s pants on fire if you do it right.” She grinned, but Matt could tell it was a forced grin, brought about to show equal confidence; confidence that neither of them really had, but wanted the other to believe that it existed, ever-present, bearing down on them like anvils on their shoulders.

Bulbasaur did not move at first. She tilted her head back to reveal the pink insides of her mouth to the world, yawning loudly. Then, with equal apathy, she stretched one of her legs to gently scratch at her head. Finally, she did get up, but only to turn at Sierra and give her a look that just screamed, ‘And why should I? What have you done for me?’

“...Bulbasaur! Do it! Please?” Sierra groaned.

Matt was rather amused by this display. Pokemon were like people, with an array of different personalities and talents, and it seemed that if Bulbasaur were a person, she would be more on the couch-potato side than the athlete’s. Which was pretty good for him, considering from what he had seen of Charmander’s personality, he was a polar opposite of that kind of laziness.

“Saur! Bulba, ba. Grahhh...ahhh.” Bulbasaur seemed to be agreeing to her wishes with this odd mix of sounds, steadily jogging forward. At the last moment, though, she threw her body in Charmander’s direction.

The reason that Matt had chosen Charmander was because he knew that they had claws. Bulbasaur and Squirtle did as well, but neither were adept enough at using them, typically, to use Scratch attacks, limiting their earlier move sets to less accurate techniques- such as a Bulbasaur tackling.

“Dodge it, Charmander, then let’s see if we can’t cook a little lettuce for dinner! Grab a nice ol’ handful with a scratch!”

Charmander leaped to the side, causing Bulbasaur to only graze him. She did manage to get a decent kick in with her back leg, which was sort of impressive, Matt supposed. Charmander then swiped at her open-view side with his claws, breaking skin and drawing a thin amount of blood.

“Bul...” Bulbasaur landed on the ground with a thick thud, her eyes echoing a sense of confusion. She had obviously not expected herself to miss, and the confusion quite obviously present sort of showed a possible spoiled background. Maybe one of the breeders who had hatched her (as was done with all starter Pokemon) pampered her without thought of her future trainer. He felt a bit sorry for Sierra because of that, but it was going to let him win his first Pokemon battle against her, so hell- it worked for him.

“...ba...” Bulbasaur picked herself up off the ground after a few moments, then suddenly, it looked as if she realized something. She looked down to her side to see the three scratch marks made by Charmander’s claws, then looked at those same claws. She saw they were red. Probably putting two and two together, she saw four in front of her, and got pretty damn pissed off about it.

Charmander’s taunting look didn’t really help either. Bulbasaur’s apathy seemed to disappear, and Charmander was sent skidding a good few inches by the sudden, speedy tackle she gave, knocking one of the chairs over.

“Alright, Charmander! At least you’ve put some energy into that thing!” Matt exclaimed.

Sierra grinned. “...So a lazy Bulbasaur with some anger issues. I think I’ll like ya, girl-” Suddenly, she motioned for Bulbasaur to approach her. Begrudgingly, the green plant-dinosaur cross did so, and she began to speak. “Venus. That’s what I’ll call you. You like it?”

“Saur. Bulb, bulbasaur bulba bulbasaur!”

Matt was pretty sure that was Bulbasaur-language for, “Sure. Now, let me get back to kicking his ***!”

The newly christened Venus turned around, and while Charmander stood waiting for Matt’s commands, Venus wouldn’t allow him the luxury. With ferocity like a Luxray, Venus tackled Charmander again, plowing him through two chairs this time, and that seemed to be more than enough.

Charmander did not get up. Matt grinned, surprisingly. He extended his hand with the red-topped, white-bottomed sphere in it and pressed the silver release button in the center. The ball opened up, returning Charmander with a flash of bright red light.

“Spunky,” Matt said next, “but needs to rid itself of that lazy ‘tude.”

“...Did I actually just win?” Sierra thought aloud.

“No, you lost,” Matt said. “I just beat you into the ground.”

“Shut up, Joyson! I won!”

Mr. Scott pulled himself up out of one of the chairs, and patted Mattt on the back. He leaned in close for a moment, whispering, “Thanks for throwing that, son.”

“Sure,” Matt responded. “No problem, Mr. Scott.”

Sierra was a little too busy doing her happy, in-your-face dance to hear this conversation, and that was for the better, he supposed.

“Now! Beth, we can go at it once I go get Charmander healed- Wait. Beth?”

Matthew Joyson raised an eyebrow, mainly at the fact that Beth Scott was nowhere in sight.




“Did you see that? Super cool!”

Beth turned around, taking in the facial features of the figure who had approached her to see if she recognized it. She didn’t. It was a girl with orangeish-red hair down to her ears, in a white t-shirt and jeans. She was smiling widely.

“No, I wasn’t paying attention,” Beth responded.

“Really? It’s right there in front of you, such action, and you don’t even pay attention? Stellar focus.”

The girl didn’t seem to be doing anything other than trying to start a conversation. While Beth would normally enter this conversation with gusto, the fact that she really needed to use the bathroom and she had no idea where they were sort of distracted her normally receiving attitude.

“Thanks.” Beth continued walking along, her eyes darting from place to place in hope of finding the destination she oh so desperately needed.

But the girl followed. “So, my name’s Robin. Robin Byrd. Funny, huh?”

“Huh. Mine’s Beth. Beth Scott. Say, do you know where the bathrooms are? I really gotta pee.”

“Oh, sure! Right around the corner. Here, follow me. So.” She began to walk a little faster, putting herself in front of Beth. “You from Pallet? Or just here for A.N.T.I.?”

Beth shook her head. “Both.”

“Oh, so you’re just becoming a trainer today, too?”

“Yep.”

When she slipped into the stall to do her business, Robin continued to speak. “So, what starter did you pick?”

“Squirtle,” she said. “Gonna name her Shelly, I think...”

“Shelly! How unoriginal. But cute. Which is why it’s unoriginal.”

Beth stood up after getting finished, pulling her shorts up and walking out the door. Robin was waiting for her.

“My starter is actually non-traditional. Well, I guess traditional in the sense that most people didn’t start with Charmander, Bulbasaur, or Squiritle,” Beth noted the odd way she said Squirtle, adding an ih between the ir and tle. “I started with a Clefairy. I’m from Pewter City.”

Beth looked at her oddly. “So you didn’t come here for A.N.T.I.?”

Robin shook her head. “I did. I just didn’t come to get the starter Pokemon; I came for the Pokedex and Trainer’s License.”

“So... you owned a Pokemon and have been training it without a trainer’s license?”

Robin smiled, an ear-to-ear ****-eating grin. “Meh. Who was gonna find out?”

“Only everybody you told...”

“Exactly! So pretty much everyone knew, but no one really tried to confront me on it. Weird, huh?” Robin shrugged.

“Kinda.” Beth said this with her voice dripping in sarcasm.

The two walked in silence for a few moments, until Robin cleared her throat and began to talk again. Beth was somewhat surprised it had lasted that long.

“So! Where are we heading now?”

“...I’m heading toward the stage. My family is waiting for me there.”

“Oh. Okay, then. Well, I’ll go with you!” Robin cheerfully said.

Beth nodded. “Alrighty, I suppose.”

The two continued to talk for a bit on the way over there- Beth learned some things about this odd, cheery girl, too. She was Robin Wood Byrd, thirteen years old, from Pewter City, Kanto. She had two sisters, both older than her by seven years, both in the field of police work: one a beat cop for the PCPD (Pewter City Police Department) while the other was a crime scene investigator for the Guardia Civil (Kanto’s major police organization). Finally, they reached the stage, where Sierra was sittingn there waiting for them, and no one else.

“Finally,” Sierra muttered. “‘bout time you got here. Dad and Matt’re out looking for you.”

“Oh, whoops. Sorry for running off like that... just reee-ea-eallly had to pee,” Beth said apologetically.

“And met a friend on the way over?” Sierra observed, looking toward Robin.

Robin bounded forward in typical energetic fashion, extending her hand toward Sierra. “Hi! You must be Sierra. Beth told me a bit about’cha. I’m Robin! Robin... Byrd! Ha, funny, isn’t it? Nice to meet ya, Sierra!”

Sierra extended her own hand, grabbing Robin’s and shaking it. She looked at Beth like she had grown lobsters out of her ears, but did not say a word to her aobut the subject; Sierra wasn’t the type to tolerate energetic, overly excitable personalities like Robin’s, but Beth had decided to let Robin come along anyway. “Okay. Let me call Matt and Dad. Let ‘em know you got here safe and all.”

So Sierra did. “Hey, dad? Yeah. She’s here. Brought a friend, too... no, no, just had to go to the bathroom. Badly, she says. Alright- you’ll call Matt? Good. Alright. See you- okay, I’ll tell her. See you in a few minutes.” Sierra closed her phone and stuck it back into the breast pocket of her shirt. “Dad says he’s glad your safe, and please let us know next time you’re gonna wander off like that. Matt probably still wants to battle you.”

“Oh?” Beth inquired. “Eh... I’m just gonna go ahead and deny that. Go home, you know.”

“So you guys aren’t leaving immediately?” Robin asked.

“No, gonna wait for the mass exodus to go away first,” Sierra deadpanned.

“Good plan!”

“Sure,” Sierra muttered.
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