The light poured in through the window. Lars was lying on his back, with the bed-sheet up to his nose. He glanced at the window a second time before debating whether or not to go back to sleep. However his thoughts were interrupted by Morgan’s cheery voice ringing in his mind.
“Gooooodd mooooorning sunshine!” The little pig said – or rather thought – with a giggle. Lars took one glance at the Psychic-type and then rolled over onto his stomach and pulled the bed-sheet over his head. Morgan gave off a displeased oink and started poking and prodding at his Trainer’s back to get him out of the bed.
“I’m not in the mood for this Morgan…” Lars said tiredly, “I’ve had that strange dream again.”
The Spoink got somewhat of a worried expression over his face, “The dream about that lizard-thing?” He asked.
“It’s not a lizard!” Lars sat straight up in the bed, the tired expression on his face had now been switched for an annoyed one, “It’s a DRAGON, a DRAGON, Morgan.”
“Of course I know that it’s a dragon! You told me like a thousand times at first!” The pig retorted.
“I didn’t tell you a thousand times Morgan!” Lars said grumpily, “I told you around 20 times, maybe. At max 26 times.”
“26?” Morgan queried, “Why would you ask me 26 times? That’s such an awkward number.”
“Well…” Lars began, “Maybe I like awkward numbers…”
“The entirety of you is awkward.”
“Hey! That’s not nice Morgan!”
“I was kidding, Lars.”
After the conversation at hand had been taken care of, Lars and Morgan went out of their room and decided to go downstairs. Breakfast was probably done by now. Lars was kind of happy that his family had managed to get them an actual house to live in and not just a flat beside some obnoxious neighbor, or any neighbor at all for that matter. As they reached the stairs, Lars smiled. He had always liked how the stairs were shaped like a spiral; it reminded him of a Helix. The very thing one might use to describe evolution among any living being. The walls had light-red, wavy lines as they went along the stairs, and the lines also stopped where the stairs stopped. It almost felt like the lines were following you as you descended from the wooden planks situated in a spiral-structure. As the two reached the bottom floor, a familiar scent filled Lars’ nostrils. It was the scent of pancakes, pancakes with butter, whipped cream and raspberry jam. Oh how he loved those…
“Morning, mom.” Lars said as he entered the kitchen. His mother looked up at him from the frying pan which she was currently utilizing to create those sweet, golden-brown discs of pure yumminess. She was wearing her usual attire, a red shirt with long sleeves and a pair of blue slacks. Honestly, they were a bit ugly, even for someone with a fashion sense such as Lars’. Her feet were covered in big, white and wooly socks which had some kind of pattern on them. His mother claimed that it was supposed to resemble the antlers of a Stantler, but they looked more like jumbled mish-mash than anything else. She also wore an apron; it was one of her favorites. The apron itself was light turquoise, but the print on it depicted a woman lying down with a rather smug look on her face and the words “Queen of F*cking Everything” right under her. That apron in particular always entertained Lars a bit whenever he saw it. When he first laid eyes upon it, the teen found it to be strange. How can you be queen of everything? But later, when his mother had explained why in fact the apron was so hilarious, he started to get a bit more amused by it.
“Go-ood morning!” His mother said in a cheerful voice. Lars was taken aback a bit, his mother’s usual response to anything during the mornings were mostly “Eeeerrrggghhhh…” or something along those lines. This was certainly an improvement, and Lars hoped that this wasn’t just because of a special occasion. But somewhere in his mind, Lars knew that that was just the case. He quickly decided to stop with these silly thoughts and to just ask his mother.
“So mom,” he said, “What’s the special occasion?”
His mother looked back at him with an annoyed – or even hurt – look, “What?” She said and pouted a bit, “So you’re telling me that I’m not usually this nice to my family?”
“Well… no.” Lars said, “At least not when it comes to the mood you’re in and the food you’re currently making.”
“Oh… Oh… What have I done to deserve such a hurtful child?” His mother said and put both her hands over her heart in an attempt to create a melodramatic scene. That was one thing about his mother that irked Lars, even though he’d been through this kind of thing many times. As stated before, she did this many times, sometimes as a joke and sometimes seriously to make either Lars or his father feel extra bad when they’ve done something wrong. And even if this rarely worked, that didn’t discourage her from continuing on with said shenanigans.
“Mom…” Lars said. However it seemed like his mother was in some sort of an “acting-trance”, some days he wondered why she never got a job at a theatre. “You do know that I don’t really feel bad with you over-dramatizing? If anything, I feel a bit annoyed by it.”
His mother looked up at him from the floor where she was currently doing… well, something and said: “Why are you always so mean to me Lah-lah?”
“Oh please don’t call me Lah-lah…” Lars said, he really despised it when his mother did that. It was hard to explain why, but there was just something with that pronunciation that he couldn’t stand, probably the over-emphasis on the ‘H’.
Now she looked at him again, however a mischievous look came upon her face. This was a look that the black-haired teen knew all too well, and he was sure that he wasn’t going to enjoy what would happen next.
“Oh, so you don’t like it when I call you Lah-lah, Lah-lah?” She said with a smirk as she edged closer to Lars. Oh no, this wasn’t going to be pleasant… “Well, if you don’t like it when I call you Lah-lah, then I’ll stop. But since you’re so mean to me,” she did a small pause and put her hands on her hips, “I’ll have to be mean to you, so we can be even!”
“Please mom, don’t do this…” Lars said as his face became more and more pale, sometimes he swore that out of the two of them, he was the most mature. His mother didn’t listen, just as he had expected. The woman edged closer and closer with a devious smile reaching from ear to ear slowly appearing on her face. She raised both her hands until they were in height with Lars. The teen protested and tried to push his mother away from him, but it was useless. After a while of struggling to get in close to her son, Lars’ mother quickly jabbed her fingers into the teen’s sides. He moved back a bit, expressing his displeasure with a loud yelp. His mother just laughed, and so did Morgan, it seemed like they were having all the fun in the world right now.
“What’s going on here?”
A tall and dark-haired man came down the stairs. He was garbed in a blue-and-white-striped pajama and had a tired look on his face; he probably hadn’t quite woken up yet. The man ran a hand through his short hair, gave off a sigh and said:
“What are you two doing?”
“Dad!” Lars exclaimed, “Mom’s poking my sides again! It kinda hurts, but mostly it’s annoying!”
“But only because he’s so mean to me!” The woman interrupted, trying to simulate an innocent look.
“What? No I’m not!” Lars exclaimed. His mother turned around and the two of them quickly initiated a conversation in the style of “Am too!” and “Am not!” arguments. The man sighed,
“I swear that you two are worse than toddlers sometimes,” the man walked up to them, “But I guess that’s one of the reasons why I love you both so much, it’s good to be a child at heart.” He continued and kissed his wife on the forehead while giving his son a loving pat on the head.
“Dad, watch the rubber bands!” Lars complained and quickly made sure that all of his reminders were still in their right places by looking in the mirror situated just by the end of the spiraling staircase. It was quite an old-fashioned mirror, or at least what was framing it in. The frame was wooden, and one could clearly tell that it was handcrafted by observing the small swirls and roses on the frame itself. Well, one could do that unless one was illiterate or just simply blind, the latter being something that Lars would rather choose over the former. He wasn’t quite sure what kind of wood the frame was made in though, he had asked both his father and mother about it before, but they had no clue. Hell, he even gave asking Morgan a shot, but the psychic pig was just as clueless as anybody else about the mirror. He knew that his paternal grandfather had given it to them after he perished six years ago. Or technically he didn’t give it to them personally, instead some people at the moving-industry or whatever gave it to them. Lars didn’t remember too much regarding his grandfather’s death as he wasn’t so keen on dwelling too much on that particular subject. It made him sad, really, really sad. Lars truly loved his grandfather, even though the earliest memories the teen had of him were when the man was lying in a bed at a hospital, brittle and weak. However, that condition would never dampen his spirits. Sure, not being able to move away from your bed 24/7 might be a bummer to a lot of people, but Lars’ grandfather always had that genuine smile on his lips whenever they visited, happily showing off his pearly whites, even though they became fewer and fewer by the years.
“Hey! How long are you going to doze off like that? Your breakfast is getting cold!”
Lars snapped out of his trance-like state when the shrill and annoyed tone that his mother would produce whenever something wasn’t happening at her preferred speed reached his ears. The teen replied with a “Yes mom,” and went into the kitchen as fast as he could.
“So, honestly, what is it with the special treatment? I mean mom not being a zombie during this time of day is a reward in itself but-” Lars began but he was quickly cut off by his mother protesting his claim. Not feeling in his arguing-mood, Lars took another pancake, sliced it up after putting some whipped cream and raspberry jam on it and ate it. After he was done chewing, the teen posed the question again, though he only included the first part of the question this time.
“Geez,” his father said and rubbed his bearded chin, “Don’t tell me that you’ve forgotten?”
“Forgotten what?” Lars said, his face showing nothing but pure cluelessness about the conversational subject at hand.
“Your Trainer’s License? You know the one that makes you able to set off on a Pokémon journey? The thing we have argued about for the past two years, does that ring any bells?” His father said sarcastically.
Oh yes! The Trainer’s License! Lars had completely forgotten! He had turned in the application for a license, taken the test to see if he was fit to go on a journey and finally gotten approved. He had already received the Trainer Card and packed the necessary things for a journey around the world, everything fit pretty neatly, not taking up too much space. The only thing left was to register at the closest Pokémon Center. Well that and buying some Poké Balls and some Potions and some other medication needed for this kind of journey. He had argued a lot with his parents to be able to leave. He understood their concern; he was their only child and had also a slight social disability. For him to make it in the “outside world” without coming to terms with his problem would be difficult, but you had got to start somewhere, right?
After finishing up his food, Lars went upstairs to put some clothes on. Even though he liked walking around in his white, stained T-shirt and the slightly baggy pants of a grey pajama, the teen knew that this wasn’t a respectable behavior outside. However, the rubber bands in his hair remained right where they were. He had always thought that they were a nifty idea for remembering things. But how he had gotten the idea in the first place was a bit fuzzy to him, possibly it had just been one of his brighter ideas at that time.
Today, Lars decided to take on a more casual appearance, not because he was normally wearing fancy clothes but because he usually wore clothes that could be described as less-than-casual if you want to be nice. So, it became a pair of plain blue jeans that he hadn’t used since last summer, this was evident due to a green stain situated on the knee which Lars hadn’t bothered to wash away. Next up was an equally plain, light-purple T-shirt which Lars was very fond of, it reminded him of an Aipom, a Pokémon which he took a big interest in. Then there were some black socks and a pair of multicolored briefs and voila, he was ready to hit the town!
However, as he was about to go outside of the house after a small trek downstairs again, Lars was stopped by his mother.
“Lars,” she said. Even though she was shorter than him, the teen felt like she was looking down at him rather than the other way around. There was just something about the tone of her voice. “Why haven’t you washed your hair?” She asked.
“Oh come on mom,” he answered, “Then I need to get the reminders out of my hair, that’s just too tedious.”
“Lars…” His mother said with a strict look on her face. Lars let out a sigh,
“Well at least let me go with dirty hair before I leave tomorrow, please? I don’t want to deal with all that now…”
“Fine,” now it was his mother’s turn to sigh. “But just be home for dinner, you need to rest up for the journey you’re about to begin tomorrow.” She said, her voice easing up a bit. Lars looked her in the eyes for a moment, it seemed like she was feeling a bit blue about this whole journey-thing. It almost made him feel a little bit bad about it, but he had already gotten everything in order, it would seem silly if he just decided to not go through with it at this point. So he kissed his mother on the cheek and opened up the door, with Morgan steadily bouncing along.