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Old December 31st, 2017 (2:31 PM).
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Darkinium Z
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Dani California
Gender: Female
Nature: Sassy
Posts: 5,210
This was written for the Serebii Forum's Yuletide 2017 gift exchange for PhalanxSigil over there. Here's the prompt I chose:

An aroma lady and a scientist meet. Maybe they argue, maybe they actually get along.

Originally I was going for a different prompt, but it didn't work out for various reasons. I started looking up some stuff on aroma ladies and scientists, and I noticed a few trained under Gardenia, and Team Galactic has several. So yeah, the characters Angela and Fredrick are from the DPPt games, though I took some liberties like Angela having Grotle and Fredrick staying in Eterna's Galactic building instead of Veilstone's HQ.

Thanks to Vragon for looking this over on such short notice!

The Scent of Roses

Right after Angela finished her training session in the Eterna Gym, she went to the Pokémon Center to heal her Pokémon. While waiting she sat down on one of the couches and ate a hamburger and fries for dinner. Tonight there were a few trainers inside, some of them gathered together next to a table and another one busy with a videophone call. It was almost half an hour until Nurse Joy announced that her Pokémon were ready and she approached the receptionist desk.

“Thank you so much!” Angela said, with a beaming smile, as Nurse Joy handed her two pokéballs back.

“It’s no trouble at all,” Nurse Joy said and grinned. “I take it Gardenia didn’t take today’s training session easily.”

Angela nodded her head. “She can be rough on us, but they don’t call her a grass type expert for nothing.”

“That’s true.” Nurse Joy chuckled, and then said, “Well, you have a good evening!”

Angela said goodnight as well before she left the Pokémon Center. Outside, an orange sunset hung over Eterna City. She froze and her heart crawled to a slow pace when one building caught her attention.

From a short distance was the former Team Galactic building. It had been almost a month since the news announced that the criminal organization had disbanded. At one point several Team Galactic grunts would watch over the streets and people being weary of them. Thinking about them still sent a chill down Angela’s spine.

She was distracted from her thoughts when a white light flashed in front of her and her Roselia popped out of her pokéball. The rose Pokemon bounced up and down waving her thorny arms. Angela’s eyes turned wide.

“Is something the manner, Roselia?”

Her Pokémon continued to move erratically, Roselia’s rosebuds pointing at the building. Angela assumed Roselia sensed some sort of presence in there, and she had an idea of what that might be.

“You think something is in there?” she asked, and Roselia nodded. There had been rumors of a ghost Pokemon haunting the Team Galactic building, but Angela didn’t believe that to be true. “I don’t think you have to worry about it.”

This caused Roselia to screech and jump harder. Angela blinked, startled at that behavior.

“So you want to go inside?” she asked. When Roselia responded with a cheer, Angela sighed and shook her head. “Fine, you win, but we won’t be in there for long. Gardenia would’ve said no if she’s with us.”

She and Roselia approached the building, Angela’s hand on the door handle. Angela glanced over her shoulder and there were some pieces of wood left behind a few feet away. She assumed someone had broken in, causing her to doubt this was a good idea.

As soon as Angela stepped inside, her skin crawled. Several machines had been left unused, and there were a few tables and a television that most likely wasn’t working either. Up ahead there was a door to another room, so she and Roselia headed there. As expected, the door was locked. Angela looked down at Roselia, who squeaked in disappointment.

“Looks like we’ll need a key. Maybe it’s in one of the rooms somewhere.”

“If you’re talking about Rotom, I don’t think you’ll find it here,” someone said from behind and she turned around to see a man with messy hair and glasses. He wore a lab coat that could use some washing. His glare caused Angela to flinch. “What are you doing here?”

“My Roselia sensed something in the building and I followed her,” Angela said with a slight shudder. Beside her, Roselia hung her shoulders down and she too looked nervous. “So no ghost Pokémon here?”

The man shook his head. “I’ve heard experiments have been conducted here, but I never got a chance to see those.”

With a raised eyebrow, Angela asked, “So you know some people that worked for Team Galactic?”

“I do, because I used to be a scientist for them.”

Angela did a double take, as if she had been hit with the worst news possible.“What? Is that why you’re in here?”

He responded by gesturing his hand for her to follow him. She and Roselia were behind him as he led them to the receptionist desk with the Galactic “G” signa on the wall. Down below, there were a couple blankets, two pokéballs, and several cans of food on the floor. A deep frown stretched across his face.

“I have no family or friends to go to, and I can’t go back to Pokétch after I quit that job.”

“Oh, that’s too bad.” As the long silence stretched between them, Angela gazed down sadly at the scientist’s belongings on the floor. The two pokéballs caught her attention once more. “Are those your Pokémon?” she asked skeptically, pointing at them.

He nodded. “Would you like to see them?”

“Um, sure.” Angela was taken aback by that request, but she was curious what Pokémon he had with him. She watched as he grabbed his pokéballs and released them.

White light burst out, and a Kirlia and Kadabra appeared. Both Pokémon gave Angela and Roselia curious faces, then they looked up at their trainer.

“Don’t worry, I don’t think she means no harm. You can say hi to her and her Pokémon.”

His Kadabra and Kirlia looked unsure at first, but then they nodded and approached Angela and Roselia. Kirlia greeted Roselia with a bow, and Angela’s Pokémon clapped excitedly. After Kadabra waved at Angela, she smiled and patted his forehead.

“Nice Pokémon you have here,” Angela said, and he offered her an appreciated smile.

“Thank you,” he said. His Pokémon soon returned to his side. As he scratched Kadabra’s chin, his Kirlia hugged onto his leg. “We decided to stay here since, well, when you don’t have a job for a while you can’t really live in the town. I came here since I know the place, but the supplies here have run thin.”

Angela frowned. She still didn’t fully trust him, but he seemed to genuinely care about his Pokémon. After pondering for a while, she faced back at him.

“You can stay with me while you try to get back on your feet again.”

Both the man and his Pokémon wore stunned looks.

“Really? But why?”

“It wouldn’t feel right leaving you and your Pokémon here, and I want to help,” she said, and Roselia hummed in agreement. He chuckled and offered her a grateful grin.

“If that’s what you want to do, then I won’t complain!”

“My place is in the Eterna Condominiums, it’s not too far from here. And oh, I’m Angela.”

“Fredrick.” The two shook hands. They returned their Pokémon,, and she waited as Fredrick grabbed his things. They then left the former Team Galactic building together.

Angela lived on the fourth floor of the old Eterna Condominiums. After they stepped inside, she turned on the lights to see Fredrick glanced around with great interest. A small couch and coffee table filled with gardening magazines sat in the middle of the living room, and pictures of Angela with her Pokémon, Gardenia, and friends from Eterna Gym hung on the walls. A few pots of roses and daisies sat in front of the window, the flowers’ scent lingering in the air.

“Well, this is my place,” Angela said, her hands behind her back. “Um, would you like something to eat or drink?”

“If it’s not too much trouble,” Fredrick said. He flung his bag on the couch and sat down.

Angela went to the kitchen real quick to grab a soda and tuna sandwich from the refrigerator and handed them to Fredrick. She watched as he gulped the drink down and put the can on the coffee table. He began taking bites of his sandwich next, and as he looked around once more he nodded in approval.

“I must say, this is a very cozy place you have here,” Fredrick said in between bites.

“Oh, thank you.” Angela rubbed the back of her neck, and then she cleared her throat. “You can sleep on the couch.”

“That’s fine with me.” Fredrick finished the last few pieces of his sandwich, and he grinned at her. “I truly appreciate you doing this for me.”

“It’s not a problem at all,” she said, smiling in return. “I’ll go ahead and get some pillows and blankets for you.”

As Angela made her way to her room, a part of her wondered if having an ex-Galactic scientist in her place was a good idea. She told herself that this was only temporary until Fredrick could get back on his feet again.

Xxx

The next morning Angela went to the kitchen and began preparing breakfast. She flipped several pieces of bacon that sizzled on the pan, making sure they weren’t too burnt. When she was almost done, she heard a loud yawn and turned around to see Fredrick approaching the breakfast counter.

“Good morning,” Angela said, beaming at him. “Had a good sleep?”

“I did. Better than me sleeping in that building.” Fredrick sat down on a stool and stretched his arms. “You’re making breakfast?”

“Ah huh. I thought you might like some.”

After Angela finished cooking, she handed him a plate of bacon and eggs. He munched on a piece of the bacon and grunted in satisfaction. Angela later joined with him at the counter and started eating herself. She glanced over her shoulder at the living room, where both her Grotle and Roselia were enjoying their own breakfast.

“So, I noticed you have a lot of plants and pictures with your Pokémon,” Fredreick said. “Are you a grass type trainer?”

Angela swallowed some of the scrambled eggs and drank her milk before she answered, “Technically my trainer role is Aroma Lady. But yes, I’m a grass type trainer. I train under Gardenia.”

“Wait, Gardenia? You mean the Eterna City Gym Leader?” Fredrick asked with wide eyes, and Angela nodded. “Wow, you must be a great trainer, then.”

Angela shook her head. “Not really. I’m nowhere as good as her.”

“Hey, don’t sell yourself short. I think you would beat me at least!”

Angela smiled, thought that was nice of him to say. She and Fredrick ate in silence for a moment, their forks poking on the food.

“If you don’t mind me asking, how come you left Pokétch for Team Galactic?”

“Long story short, I felt I wasn’t appreciated there and so I quit. That was when one of the Team Galactic recruiters reached out and told me the benefits of working there. I accepted in a heartbeat.”

Hearing that caused Angela’s throat to tighten. “Now that Team Galactic is no more, will you try to find another job?”

“I’ll have to if I want to survive.” Fredrick dragged out a deep sigh. “I can’t say I used to work for Team Galactic, so I’m not sure how I’ll explain that job gap in interviews.”

Angela agreed that would be a problem. Still, she want to make him a little more hopeful there. “I’m sure you’ll figure something out. You can always go to the Eterna City Library, there’s lots of job search resources there.”

“I think I’ll do that, thanks for letting me know,” Fredrick said before he gulped a glass of milk.

Angela took a glance at her Pokétch watch, which read 7:30am. She gasped.

“Oh, I need to head to the gym right now!” Angela said as she jumped out of her seat and rushed to put her plate in the sink. She grabbed her bag that she left on the table with her keys and pokéballs in it. After Grotle and Roselia finished their food, they started following her around.

“I have some food in the fridge if you want to make something for yourself real quick. You can use the shower, but try not to use too much hot water. And try not to destroy the plants!”

“All of that is fine with me.” Fredrick went back to eating the last few pieces of his eggs and bacon.

“Okay, good. I’ll see you later today!” Angela said before she and her Pokémon hurried off. Even if he was from Team Galactic, Angela trust that Fredrick would behave himself while she was away.

xxx

At first Fredrick had been busy looking for work. Everyday after Angela got off from the gym, he would tell her how he either stayed in the library checking job listings online or walked around the city to see any help wanted ads. He had applied to a few places, but immediately they either said that he was overqualified or that position was already occupied. That made him get discouraged as each day passed, but Angela would encourage him to keep trying. She was reminded how it took her a while until Gardenia had hired her as one of her trainers, so she sympathised.

That night she and her two Pokémon recently came out from grocery shopping. Grotle helped her carry one of the bags with his mouth while Roselia rode on his back. They passed by several people that were coming in and out from various business establishments. Angela gazed down and grinned at her Pokemon.

“I can’t wait for you guys to try out this new recipe Jenna taught me,” she said, referring to one of the trainers she worked with in Eterna Gym. “These berries will make your guys’ food sweet, and I think Fredrick might like these too.”

Both Grotle and Roselia cheered in reply. Angela smiled back at them, and then she thought about how Fredrick was doing. She hoped tonight’s dinner would make him feel better.

When she and her Pokémon made it to the condominium, they arrived to see Fredrick napping on the couch. Angela raised an eyebrow, then approached him and shook his shoulder. That stirred him from his sleep, and Fredrick looked at her with tired eyes.

“Oh, hi Angela,” he said, his voice slightly drowsy.

“Busy day?” she asked with an understanding smile.

“You can say that.” Fredrick yawned, stretched his arms, and sat up. “I got a call from a scientist position over at Canalave City I applied for a few days ago, and they said that was already occupied. The museum also has a spot opening, so I’m waiting on them to get back to me.”

“Hey, no one says finding work is easy. You just have to keep on trying.” She paused, then said, “I’m making dinner for us and the Pokémon, you can bring yours out now if you want.”

Smiling a little, Fredrick said, “Sounds good to me.”

For the next hour Angela prepared the food and then everyone ate their meals. She made steak and salad for herself and Fredrick while their Pokémon were given chopped meat with berries mixed in. The sweetness of the berries tickled Angela’s tongue and Fredrick seemed satisfied himself.

“I have to say, this salad is quite good,” he said before taking another bite of his salad.

“You should thank my friend Jenna. She was the one that suggested the recipe.” She looked over her shoulder to see her and Fredrick’s Pokémon chowed down on their food. “You guys enjoying it, too?” she asked, and all the Pokémon responded with favorable grunts.

She and Fredrick went back to eating their meal. After she finished with hers, Angela checked her Pokétch on her wrist and went to the move tester application. She tried to check if a Fairy move would be effective against a Poison and Grass Pokémon, but the screen didn’t respond. Angela shook her wrist, nothing.

“Dang, not again,” she said and pouted.

Fredrick gulped his glass of water, and asked with a raised eyebrow, “Something’s wrong?”

“I was trying out the move tester app on my Pokétch, but after I got the update that included Fairy type Pokémon and moves it stopped responding.”

“Let me have a look.”

Angela handed him her Pokétch, and waited as Fredrick checked through it. He finished in a few minutes and gave her the watch back.

“Okay, this should do it.”

Angela tried the move tester application again. This time, it showed that a Fairy move wouldn’t be effective against a dual Grass and Poison Pokémon.

“It works now!” she said, beaming at him. Fredrick grinned in return.

“Me and a few colleagues experimented with our Pokémon and created this app for trainers like you to strategize your moves better.”

Angela’s smile disappeared, remembering that Fredrick used to work at that company. “You said that you couldn’t go back to Pokétch when we first met. You sure your friends there can’t help you get your job back?”

“They too didn’t take me seriously, so I doubt they would put in a good word for me.” He sighed and scratched the back of his neck. “While with Team Galactic, I didn’t mind the work there at first. After they disbanded, I realized what I did to the Pokémon was unethical. ”

A sharp gasp left Angela’s throat. It was as if a knot twisted inside her stomach. She gazed down on her finished plate and her finger circled around the table.

“As much as I hate Team Galactic, at least you want to fix your mistakes in the end.”

She looked back up to see Fredrick’s surprised face. He cleared his throat and went back to chewing the last few pieces of his salad. Angela glanced at the corner of the living room to see Grotle napping while Fredrick’s Kadabra and her Roselia seemed to be having a conversation, the rose Pokémon making wild gestures to him.

Kirlia wasn’t seen anywhere at first, but shortly after he approached Fredrick and tugged at his shirt. Angela spotted him holding a small round container that smelled of roses. He gave him a stern face.

“No Kirlia, that isn’t yours. Put it back where you found it.”

Kirlia put his head down and whined. He began walking away with his shoulders slumped.

“That’s one of my rose incenses!” she exclaimed. She had some inside the bathroom, so most likely Kirlia went inside there.

“That is what it is? I’ve heard those are rare in Sinnoh.”

“My cousin had given a few of these to me from her trip in Hoenn. You can have one of them.”

“Are you sure?” he asked, his eyes wide. When Angela smiled and nodded, Fredrick chuckled. “The incense did smell very nice.”

“Roses are my favorite scent! Go ahead, take it.”

Fredrick hesitated a moment, but then he turned his head and shouted, “Alright Kirlia, you can keep it!”

Kirlia stopped midway to the bathroom. He jumped up in excitement and rushed to Fredrick to hug him. Fredrick returned the hug, but he didn’t smile.

Fixing her gazed at him, Angela assumed Fredrick had a lot on his mind now. She remained silent, and played around her Pokétch.

xxx


The next several days weren’t any better, and Fredrick proved to be hard to live with under one roof. In the mornings he would use the shower for several minutes before Angela could use it. He would leave his dirty dishes in the sink without washing them and didn’t bother to pick up his clothes on the couch and on the floor. He seemed to be content sleeping in instead of finding work. Angela began to lose her patience.

She returned to her place after a long training session in the gym, and upon stepping in her face fell flat. Fredrick sat on the couch with a t-shirt and sweatpants on. He was a watching a show that featured three women in a coffee shop complaining about their significant others. She took the remote from the coffee table, turned off the television, and glared at him with her hands on her hips. Fredrick stared blankly back at her.

“Have you looked for any possible job leads today?” she asked, and Fredrick shrugged.

“I thought watching The Delcatty Book Club would be more fun.”

“How about the museum here you applied at several days ago? Did they get back to you yet?”

“They did yesterday, and they told me they’re not interested in me.”

Heat flushed through Angela’s face. She pinched her nose and groaned.

“Look, I know you’re having a hard time finding work, but lately you’ve been just staying here all day and leaving a mess. This is not a motel.”

“Well no one’s going to hire me, so what’s the use? I already blew my chance at a future after I joined Team Galactic.”

“So you’re just giving up just like that?” she yelled, throwing her arms up in the air. When Fredrick didn’t respond, she crossed her arms and shifted her gaze away from him. “If I knew you would be this stubborn, I wouldn’t have helped you in the first place!”

Angela swung her head back to see Fredrick’s grimaced expression, and a ping of dullness struck her chest like a knife. A part of her wanted to take back what she said, but the damage has been done. After a long moment of intense silence between them, Fredrick got up and headed for the door.

“I think I need some fresh air,” he said with a sharp look, and then he slammed the door.

Angela stared in disbelief for a minute before she sunk herself on the couch. She threw one of Fredrick’s shirts on the floor and sighed deeply. In that instant, Roselia and Grotle popped out of their pokéballs and gazed at her in concern. She frowned at them.

“Sorry if I made you guys worried. Fredrick and I just had an argument and well, I might’ve messed things up now.”

Neither of her Pokémon knew what just happened. They nuzzled against her chest and Angela chuckled. She was used to their sharp body texture all over her, so she didn’t mind. Roselia’s roses gave off a relaxing fragrance, and Grotle smelled of pine needles. Her smile soon faded, Angela worrying when would Fredrick get back.

By the time Angela needed to go to bed, Fredrick hadn’t return yet.


xxx


Angela always enjoyed training with Gardenia and the other trainers in the gym. After each battle, Gardenia would give them tips on what they could improve on, which she appreciate very much. Today she and Gardenia had a battle with one another while Jenna and Caroline, another trainer in the gym, did their own match, and so far the gym leader was faring much better than her.

“Shadow Ball now, Roserade!” Gardenia commanded.

“Hide in your shell, and then charge at her!” Angela yelled out, but with a hint of unease in her voice.

Roserade formed a crimson ball in between her hands and threw it at Grotle, but the turtle Pokémon withdrew into his shell just in time and his opponent’s attack just dispersed once it made contact on him. Grotle then popped back out and rushed towards Roserade. Gardenia let out a confident grin and thrust her arm out.

“Slow Grotle down with Grass Whistle!”

Gardenia’s Pokémon closed her eyes and whistled a soothing melody. That caused Grotle to stop and listen attentively. He swayed a few times and his eyes grew heavy, and then he collapsed on the ground and snored. Angelia gasped and she clenched her fist.

“Come on, wake up!” she pleaded, but Grotle still sounded asleep. Gardenia took the opportunity to order Roserade use Grass Knot, which she obliged. Roserade released a slim vine that wrapped around Grotle’s leg and threw him into the air. Seconds later, Grotle crashed on the ground and groaned in pain. When he was unable to get up, Angela rushed to her Pokémon and cradled him in her arms.

“Are you okay?” she asked Grotle as she gazed down on him. The grass turtle licked Angela’s cheek and she giggled. She said that he did great, and then returned him to his pokéball. The smile on Angela’s lips faded and she frowned. Gardenia and Roserade approached Angela.

“Hey, you seem out of it today.” A worried expression crossed Gardenia’s face. “Is there something wrong?”

“Sorry, Gardenia. There’s a lot on my mind, but I don’t know if I’m comfortable saying it to anyone.”

Gardenia regarded her for a moment. She then turned around to Jenna and Caroline who just had finished their own battle. “Jenna, Caroline, can you give us a minute?” The two women at first looked at her in confusion, but then they nodded and left Gardenia and Angela alone. Gardenia faced back to Angela and said, “You can tell me anything. I don’t like seeing any of my trainers feel down.”

Angela hesitated telling Gardenia what had been going on recently, but decided it would be rude of her to refuse her help. She held onto her stomach and swallowed.

“Well, I let someone with a shady background live in my home so he can get back on his feet again. Things didn’t turn out so well as I have hoped, and now I’m not sure what to do.”

“Oh? What kind of shady background?”

Shifting her gaze away from the gym leader, Angela said, “Um...he was a scientist that used to work for Team Galactic.”

“Wait, Team Galactic?” Gardenia asked in shock. “Where did he used to work at?”

“Oh, um… He used to work on the Pokétch for the Pokétch Company.”

“So he left that company for Team Galactic?” Gardenia sighed and folded her arms against her chest. “I take it he has no friends or family he can go to?” she asked, and Angela shook her head. “What makes you want to help him, then?”

“I guess a part of he believes he wants to change and that everyone deserves a second chance.”

“Has he proven that he’s making an effort in doing that?”

Angela’s breath hitched, even though she expected her to ask that. “He was trying to find work at first and he fixed my Pokétch when I had trouble getting it to work. He also seemed to care about his Pokémon and they loved him back.”

WIth a furrowed brow, Gardenia pondered over this. She then said, “Alright, I trust your judgement. I know someone that works at home in Sunyshore City and he develops applications for that company, too.”

“Are you sure about this?” Angela asked, her voice shaking. “Fredrick left the company not on good terms…”

“I might be able to convince him to meet with your houseguest and get his job back, but I can’t guarantee that he’ll agree to this.”

Angela considered Gardenia’s offer a moment. While she was afraid this would make Fredrick’s situation worse, there was also a chance Gardenia’s friend could help him. This was the only option now.

“All right, I’ll trust you on this.”

“Hey, it’s the least I could do! Have your Grotle healed at the Pokémon Center and I’ll go ahead with contacting my friend. I’ll let you know if he says anything.”

“That would be great, thank you!” Angela said and gave Gardenia a quick embrace. She then said that she would see her tomorrow and left the gym to go to the Pokémon Center.

Over an hour later, she returned to her apartment. She thought Fredrick would be still sleeping on the couch, but instead he was reading a book. She frowned, still shaken from their encounter from yesterday.

“Reading something good?” she asked, and Fredrick tore his gaze from his book to look at her.

“You can say that. I’m reading up on some technology Pokétch and other companies had been working on.” He set the book down on the coffee table and chuckled. “Even though I quit working for Pokétch, I still keep up to date what has been going on there.”

“How come?” she asked, joining with him on the couch.

Fredrick shrugged, and then he leaned back on the couch and stared at the ceiling. “Can’t let go of the past I guess.”

An awkward silence stretched between them. After releasing a deep sigh, Angela knitted her fingers together and lowered her gaze to her lap.

“About yesterday, I’m sorry that I lost my temper there. I should’ve been a little more understanding.”

Fredrick shook his head. “No, you’re right. I haven’t been a good houseguest and I shouldn’t have used my self-loathing as an excuse. So, that’s why I decided that I’ll leave tomorrow.”

Upon hearing that, Angela’s heart sunk. “Where will you be going?”

“There’s a job ad in Oreburgh City that asks for miners. Maybe I’ll get lucky finding a Pokémon fossil there,” he joked.

Already Angela knew that was not what she wanted him to do. Without thinking, she squeezed Fredrick’s hand. “Stay for a few more days at least. I talked with Gardenia earlier today and she knows someone in Sunyshore City that also works for Pokétch who might help with getting your job back.”

An incredulous stare crossed Fredrick’s face. He shook his head. “I’m certain they won’t want to talk to me. I already bought a bus ticket to go there, so that’s final. I’m sorry.”

Angela let go of Fredrick’s hand when he jumped off from the sofa. He approached the window and gazed outside with a deep frown. She stared at his back for a while, still processing that he would leave soon. This was it, then.

xxx


The next morning Angela got dressed and went to the living room. She noticed that the couch was empty and the blanket unmade, no sign of Fredrick around. Angela grabbed the blanket and held it tightly against her chest.

Still holding the blanket, she sat down and hung her head down. She was like this for a short while until the phone on the coffee table rang. After being startled for a second, she saw Gardenia’s number flashing on the screen and picked it up immediately.

“Angela, my friend just got back to me and says that he’s willing to talk with him.”

“Really?” Angela jumped off from the sofa and dropped the blanket on the floor.

“Yes. He’s actually familiar with some of Fredrick’s work. Is he here with you?”

Angela’s stomach flipped. “Actually, um, he told me last night that he was leaving and right now he’s gone.”

“Oh, that’s too bad,” Gardenia said in disappointment from the other line. “Where he’s heading?”

“He’s taking a bus to Oreburgh City. I think he’s using the Luxray Express.”

“Luxray Express? If I remember correctly, only a few buses made those trips. Maybe you can still catch him before he takes it.”

“You think so?” A part of her was hopeful that there was a chance she could still get to Fredrick and tell him the good news.

“I can check their schedule online real quick. Give me a minute.”

Angela waited a moment for Gardenia to find out about today’s bus schedule. As soon as she came back, Gardenia sounded pleased.

“According to their site, the next bus to Oreburgh City doesn’t leave for another hour or so. You want me to tell you my friend’s contact info before you head to the bus station?”

“Yes, please!” Angela said, grinning. She grabbed a pen and piece of paper and listened as Gardenia told her the number and address of her friend Mitch. After Angela got the information she needed, she thanked her and rushed out to go to the bus station.

xxx

The Luxray Express was almost half an hour walk from her condominium. There were several people inside, most of them sat down and waited. Fredrick seated near where the front desk was, looking at his Pokétch watch. When Angela approached him and tapped his shoulder, he looked up to her with wide eyes.

“Looks like I made it,” Angela said in between deep breaths.

“Angela? What you’re doing here?”

“I have something for you.”

She handed him the paper with Mitch’s contact information. Fredrick took a moment to look at it and his mouth slacked.

“Is this the contact information of your gym leader’s friend you told me about?”

Angela nodded. “Gardenia’s friend has heard about your work and he’s willing to talk with you. You have time to talk with him before your bus leaves.”

Already Fredrick shook his head. “I can’t do this. What if I say something wrong to him?”

“That shouldn’t be a problem for you.” Angela offered him a reassuring smile and squeezed his shoulder. “Even if he refuses you after, this might lead you into something better.”

Fredrick pressed his lips and looked back at the note on his hand. This time he seemed to seriously consider it.

“All right, I’ll give him a call now,” he said, giving her a small smile. Fredrick rose from his seat and went to the nearest videophone.

Angela sat down and waited while Fredrick talked on the phone. A few people had got up and left to go to their bus, Angela assuming one of them about to leave for Oreburgh City. It was almost twenty minutes until Fredrick returned to her.

“So, how did it go?” she asked.

“It went better than expected. Mitch’s actually going to visit Jubilife City next week, so he wants to meet with me there and talk more about working with him. Perhaps we might even visit the Pokétch Company headquarters.”

“Really? That’s great news!” Angela said, grinning.

“It seems like he wants to help so hopefully it’ll work out.” The smile on Fredrick’s lips faded, as if he had forgotten something important. “Oh, before I go, this belongs to you.”

He grabbed his bag and pulled out the rose incense that Angela had given to him a few days ago. She shook her head and held out her hand.

“No, you keep it. I gave it to you anyways as a gift.”

Fredrick blinked in surprise, but then he grinned. “I’ll keep it safe, then. Kirlia does like that incense a lot!”

Just then, an announcement was made from the intercom that the bus to Oreburgh City would depart very soon. Fredrick let out a sheepish laugh and rubbed the back of his neck.

“Well, that’s my bus. Thank you… for everything. If it weren’t for you, I wouldn’t have this opportunity.”

“It’s no trouble at all! Do tell me how it went!”

She jumped off of her seat to give Fredrick a quick hug which he returned. They gazed at one another.

“I’ll call you after I meet up with Mitch!” Fredrick waved goodbye to her and headed to his bus.

Angela stayed where she was for a while, her grin widening. Living with a former Team Galactic scientist probably wasn’t her smartest idea, but she was glad she did and it was a great experience for her. She soon left the bus station, certain that Fredrick would be fine from this point on.
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Old January 23rd, 2018 (6:41 PM).
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Astinus Astinus is online now
     
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    This was a really cute and enjoyable read! I like how you took two random characters from the games and gave them so much life in this. There was more to Fredrick, with his past included in the story, but Angela was great too.

    I'm sure your giftee liked this story too!
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