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January 25th, 2009 (7:34 PM). Edited January 26th, 2009 by Dagzar.
In my dreams.
Okay. This is my new story that I’ve been working on for a few weeks and have been dreaming about for much longer.
After being saddled with two ten-year-old brats and being sent out on her long overdue Pokemon journey, she can’t help but wonder… is it ever worth it?
This is rated, in my mind, PG-14. There is violence and language, though both may get more graphic later on.
So, without further ado, I bring you my story:
It was cloudy.
Glaring suspiciously at the sky between the leaves and branches of the tree, Leah grumbled under her breath as
she fidgeted in place. A cool wind blew her dark hair into her face, but she roughly tucked it back behind her ear without taking her eyes from the skyline. She shoved her hands into her pocket and leaned back against the thick and smooth wood of the tree.
Her narrow gray eyes studied the dark clouds in the distance that were rolling towards her at a slow, but threatening place.
A burst of laughter caught her attention. Leah frowned and tried to put her focus sorely on the weather. Though, in the corner of her eye, she could easily make out several huddling, though cheerful, figures ahead of her, not having hardly a care in the world.
She made something of a bitter smirk as she lost her concentration and decided to watch
instead of doing the more important thing in her mind. Unlike the shivering population a few meters in front of her, she wasn’t the least bit cold, having worn a heavy raincoat; just in case the day wouldn’t have been as bright and sunny as the news predicted last night.
And behold, she thought sarcastically. Knowing how her luck went, it would probably be raining and miserable by the time she finally got out of there.
It was definitely not the weather one would suspect for someone’s very first day as a Pokemon trainer.
…Well, technically not
first day exactly. No; she was talking about
first day, the ones that were obviously much shorter and brattier than her. The ones that were stupid enough not to expect a cold day in the middle of July. The ones that were talking excitedly to the people around them about what type of Pokemon they were going to get.
The ones that had no ****ing clue what they were getting into.
She could pretty much guess what they were talking about, even if only hearing the faint buzz of their conversation since she was standing quite far away. They were hoping for a rare Pokemon for their starter. Maybe Charmander, Squirtle, or Bulbasaur, the endangered and highly sought out Pokemon that were usually the starters in the gameboy games; the ‘classic’ starters. Or maybe something more exotic, like Eevee, Dratini or Pikachu. Or maybe even something foreign like Larvitar. Or something like that.
If not talking about Pokemon, they were most likely boasting on how they were going to be a Pokemon Master. How they were going to be the next Champion of the Pokemon League, having sorely trounced the Elite Four. They didn’t care how they were going to do it. They were just
would stop them.
Well, whatever they were talking about, all she knew was that
every single one of them
was going to be disappointed in the end. No exceptions. None. Zip. Nada.
She knew this, could predict this with ease, because she
an ‘official’ Pokemon trainer. Emphasis on the ‘was’, though.
What raced through their minds once went through hers…
But that was a long time ago.
Leah stared at the bunch of brats, mentally counting all the continuous moving figures as they were running and splashing in the mud and small puddles. One, two, three…. Maybe about fifteen, according to her calculations.
It was actually surprising. She had been expecting a bit more than that puny number. Why, when she first became a trainer, there were three times more kids! All of them, including her, admittedly, were eager to get their first Pokemon from Professor Oak. Her ‘generation’ of trainers came from all around Kanto, having looked forward to that day for pretty much their whole lives.
She shook her head and tried to redirect her thoughts. Because that was then and this was now. Besides, what did she care if there weren’t a lot of them? It would be less work for her. She had been watching the idiots for over thirty minutes and she already didn’t like them. They acted so immature and, well,
. It just bugged her to think she was once like that.
With a small sigh, she slowly closed her eyes and tried to block out the buzz of chatter.
Oh, if only she could have stayed in bed that morning. Her grandmother was at a conference in Viridian City, so no one
have forced her to get up and get going. She could have skipped the day entirely and have been completely worry free. But, sadly, unfortunately and of-the-most-rotten-luck, she had to go. She had to get up at eight in the morning, walk all the way to Oak’s lab while ignoring the chill, and had to watch the
little morons until Professor Oak bothered to come out of his cozy little lab.
she didn’t have to deal with them-
“Excuse me!” a loud voice cut into her thoughts and Leah turned her head to stare down at one of the smartly dressed figures that was standing before the crowd of kids and in front of the door to Oak’s lab. His arms were waving at them. “Can everyone look at me, please!”
All eyes turned towards the two men and the kids quieted their talking into a whispering frenzy.
“Uh, thank you,” the man said and cleared his throat. “I am Professor Jones and this is my colleague Professor Mare,” he indicated to the silent and solemn man beside him before continuing. “Professor Oak, unfortunately, will not be handing out the Pokemon today as he is CURRENTLY BUSY-” the man was forced the shout over the moans and groans of the excited, and now disappointed, children.
Professor Jones tried to get their attention again, but couldn’t. He gave his colleague a pitiful and helpless look.
“As Professor Jones was saying,” the stern, but booming voice of Professor Mare said, instantly cutting through the protests and silencing the many voices. “Professor Jones will be handing out the Pokemon, Pokedex and your trainer licenses to you. All other equipment isn’t our concern. If you’d follow Professor Jones, he will brief you on what you will be doing as a trainer-”
“Yes, thank you,” Professor Jones gibbered, obviously not use to handling kids. “Children, if you’d follow me into the lab-”
Professor Jones quickly disappeared behind the soft wooden door of the large building as the trainers-to-be quickly scrambled forwards, nearing running after the professor. They somehow squeezed through the small doorway and all their loud voices were cut off as the door closed quietly behind them.
Leah watched them leave, having not moved an inch from her tree. What now? she thought, hiding her anticipation behind thoughts of boredom.
She noticed that the only ones left outside were herself, Professor Mare and five other people. Like her, the five were all obviously older than ten-years-old and she could instantly tell they were trainers. Of course, some of them having Pokemon out, like the Ekans wrapped around that guy’s neck, did help her out.
She sighed and knew the end had come. Reluctantly leaving her tree behind, she carefully walked down the hill that was somewhat overlooking the lab, her boots making a squishing sound as she walked over the damp grass that was mixed with dirt and mud. Crossing the road and stepping onto the solid cement of the driveway, she lined up with the five trainers, her hands clenched in her pockets.
A slight feeling of nausea started to grow in her chest and she could feel her jacket clinging to her skin. She swallowed nervously and suddenly didn’t feel quite as brave as she felt just minutes ago.
There was no turning back. It was time to face her doom.
“Now,” Professor Mare started again.
“I understand you six signed up for the Trainer Mentorship Program that Professor Oak is hosting-”
Oh yes, Leah thought bitterly, anxious to distract her mind from her sudden swell of nervousness. Though ‘signed up’ wouldn’t even be close to the terms she would use. More like ‘bribed’ or ‘unwilling signed in an attempt to dodge the likelihood of a boarding school.’
The Trainer Mentor Program. There were so many words she could use to describe it, but she liked to sum it up with: ‘annoying’, ‘troublesome’ and ‘the source of all her problems’. The Program was relatively new and had only started up about two years ago. The purpose was, according to her, to travel with a bunch of brats and make sure they didn’t put themselves or get into any stupid situations.
The only good side that Leah could see, was that it only lasted around two to three months. It could have been worse. A lot worse, actually, if what her Grandmother told her about the ‘rough draft’ of the program was true.
The Trainer Mentor Program was also something that she had been positively dreading for the past month. No matter what her Grandmother said, Leah just knew that it would be an awful experience.
“-I, Professor Jones and Professor Oak are thankful to you for lending us your spare time in guiding young trainers on their Pokemon journeys,” he continued, addressing the group as a whole. “You are already Pokemon trainers and you know what to expect and know the dangers that can happen on such a journey. You six are here to prevent any accidents from befalling these young youths.
“This year, there are sixteen new trainers and, as such, four of you will be mentoring three of the children and two of your will have two, each. I have chosen your groups for you and I’d like you all to wait by the mailbox for your charges after I am finished,” he peered at them seriously. “Any questions?”
“Yeah,” the boy with the Ekans, who was standing beside her, piped up, “What if one of them wants to go home? What do we do with them then?”
Leah knew that it was no secret that around fifty percent of all newbie trainers gave up in the first month, and around forty-five percent in the next four months. For whatever reason they had, only around five percent of the newbie trainers would stay in the game, so to speak, and become ‘professionals’. The drop outs, on the other hand, would go back home, go back to school, and mostly forget their dream of being a professional Pokemon trainer.
Hell, she should know; she was one of them. And hopefully, so were the brats she was going to get. She had been watching them for a while and she could hardly see any of
Professor Mare was still talking in an annoying drone, “-I’d advise that you fly them home or drop them off in your travels. Your job of mentoring them is only done when either or both your charges quit, or if your time of a period of two-and-a-half-months is done, or if they gain four or more gym badges. That way, their Pokemon should be strong enough at that time to take care of their trainers.”
Another one of the trainers asked a question, but Leah zoned out of the conversation. What they were talking about wasn’t important. Whichever type of brats she would get would probably, hopefully, drop out after a week. She doubted that she would have follow them around for a whole two-and-a-half months.
Keep thinking positively, she advised herself. The whole situation would go by faster if she did.
“Hey,” the boy with the Ekans whispered to her with a smile, also ignoring the Professor.
Leah barely glanced at him, still submerged in her thoughts. “What’d you want?”
“What Pokemon do you have?”
“None of your business,” she replied immediately, not caring if she was being rude. It wasn’t like she was ever going to see him again anyways.
“Aw, c’mon,” he said with a whine. “I’m curious.”
Leah dodged the question with a furious whisper. “Why you want to know?”
“Because I know all these guys,” he said, indicating with his head at the other trainer next to him, trying not to disturb his Ekans. “A lot of us started together and we’ve seen each other around a lot. I know all their Pokemon and stuff. I like to know my fellow Pallet trainers and what way is best then to start with Pokemon?” he did a small shrug with a grin. “It’s also just a bit odd I’ve never seen you around before.”
“You wouldn’t of seen me around,” she said with a grimace.
“If you two are done whispering,” Professor Mare interrupted with an icy stare as he and the other four trainers looked at them. “I am quite sure that it is almost time for your charges to come outside.”
“So, we wait at the mail box?” the boy asked nervously, looking properly chastised.
“Yes,” Professor Mare said and spoke again just as the trainers were turning away. “One more thing. I would like to remind you all that if you have any problems that you cannot solve for yourselves, get in contact with the Pokemon League or with Professor Oak. Do not keep your problems to yourselves.”
A few of the trainers muttered an affirmative as Leah walked back up the driveway and towards the metal mailbox standing on a wooden post. She stopped right before it and, after a moment of thought, turned to the Ekans boy who followed her.
“Hey,” she said blankly and continued before he could reply. “I’m gonna be up there,” she pointed to the large tree which she was leaning against earlier. “Tell that to the ones that come looking for me.”
Leah had already walked off the driveway and across the dirt road by the time the boy could reply.
“Wait!” he yelled. “I don’t even know your name!”
“I don’t care,” she shouted back without looking as she hopped over the shoddy looking knee-height fence that separated the road from the wild looking grass. She made her way up the hill, kicking up the excess pebbles behind her and stood proudly at the top.
She found that she rather liked the hill as she appreciated the sudden silence. Turning around, she once again leaned against the tree. Her shoulders slumped and she found herself finally relaxing.
Leah thought to herself. The conversation with the Professor didn’t go that bad, though that was probably because she zoned out for, like, half of it. It was short and, well, not that sweet, but it didn’t matter. Actually, maybe it was a good thing that Professor Oak was busy. He would most likely ramble on a lot more and look us straight in the eye to make sure they understood. Or, at least, that’s how Grandmother said Oak acted. Leah had never actually met the guy before.
And now most likely never will. Oh well.
Glancing down, Leah could only spot the bored looking teens, but couldn’t see any of the newbies. How long had she been up there for? Maybe a minute?
“This,” she said out loud and impatiently, “is going to take a while.”
Finding herself watching the Ekans boy as he rubbed the Pokemon’s head, she quickly averted her eyes and scolded herself. What was going on with her? She had much better things to do then to stare at some kid!
…But there was something about that kid that was bugging her.
“What Pokemon do you have?”
Leah blinked. Oh, right. That reminded her.
Digging through her pocket, she pulled out a miniaturized red and white Pokeball that was warm in her hand and was coated lightly with sweat. She stared at it and her lips pulled into a grimace.
“Ew. Have I been holding onto it for all this time?”
Her attention was then caught by a small and very crinkled sticker that planted right at the top of the sphere. The sticker looked a bit like a Bulbasaur that was once green, but the color had faded into an ugly yellow. The sticker would have come off if it hadn’t been held there by a clear piece of old scotch tape.
The sight made her a bit uncomfortable and she wondered why she hadn’t yet taken the sticker off. It wasn’t like the sticker was important or anything like that.
Another glance at Oak’s non-moving door made a decision.
Leah clicked the button in the middle of the ball and pointed it at the ground to her right and a few feet away.
“Sands,” she commanded and flinched as the ball snapped opened in her hand and let loose a white light that gathered beside her. A small rushing sound had her lean uncomfortably to the side as her Pokeball closed, its job being done.
The Pokemon that stood with her wasn’t as classic or exotic or foreign as she would have liked to deal with.
It stood on its hind legs and nearly reached her knee in height. It had a rodent face and body that was covered in yellow plating. Where the protective armor didn’t cover, like its muzzle and front, there was short white hair that was almost bristle in nature. Sticking out of its behind was a stubby tail and the Pokemon had two triangular ears on the top of its head.
The Sandshrew put its nose in the air and sniffed lightly. Its dark beady eyes looked around itself and it made a small squeak as it noticed Leah standing there, arms held firmly at her side.
“Hey,” she tried to give it a smile, but it just ended up looking awkward.
“Shrew?” Sands said with a small whine as it gazed at her with no tiny amount of suspicion.
Sands the Sandshrew. Where should she start? For one, it was her first Pokemon and it was about five years old now. She got it when she first became a trainer and had decided to keep it when she quit being a trainer a week after starting. Truthfully, she wasn’t going to keep the Pokemon, not wanting any reminder of being a trainer, but her Grandmother insisted on her keeping it.
“Guess what,” Leah said, deciding to get down to business. “You’re finally going to become useful.”
It looked at her confusingly.
She just sighed in exasperation. The Pokemon was just an animal with superpowers; she couldn’t expect it to understand what she was saying.
“I’m being forced to become a… trainer, again,” she muttered. “So…”
“Sands?” Sands said.
Leah hated to put it out loud. Saying it just made it more real and she saying it herself was her admitting that tenfold. “Yeah, Sands. Me and you have to try this again. Right from the very beginning.”
Sands sat on its hunches and its ears perked up as chatter suddenly filled the air.
Her attention being caught, she could see that the kids that came out of the door were filled with a new type of energy as they pranced around in excitement. They laughed as they dramatically threw their Pokeballs to the sky and watched as the bright light came down and manifested their first Pokemon.
Bitterly, Leah wondered which one of the brats would be hers. Maybe the blond one in blue or maybe the one with the Meowth? But no. She could see the Ekans kid pointing over at her to two or three of the kids that were crowding around the five teenagers.
“Sands,” she said without taking her eyes off the crowd. “I think I’m going to be sick.”
The dark clouds that had been looming towards Pallet Town were completely forgotten in her mind. Her only thought was centered around a hope that the future would go smoothly.
Though, knowing her, it was doubtful.
So, please review and tell me what you think.
Joined Jan 2009
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