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Intro: End of the Road

Discussion in 'Creative Archive' started by Weeds, Jul 15, 2011.

  1. Monkey see, monkey do, I guess.

    But seriously, I was in the exact same situation. He just beat me to it :/

    I have the prologue and first chapter finished, second one will be started when I post this. I might not post new chapters in a few weeks after this, but I'll still be writing, so I'll have a bunch for you over in August ^^ Unless I decide to be a douche and leave you guys craving for more. I could see that happening >:3

    Also, the prologue was supposed to be the first chapter, but I have a tendency to get carried away with bios...

    Prologue: The Boy and his Story

    The green countryside passed by in a blur outside the window of the bus. Victor Johnson was lazily staring out that window, but even though he looked half-asleep, he was bubbling like a little schoolgirl inside. Vic's destination was Nuvema Town, his motive; to obtain his very first Pokémon.

    Vic Johnson was a sixteen year old boy from Undella Town. He had semi-short, light brown hair, and deep, grey eyes, which looked like stormclouds. He was wearing a white, collared shirt with its top button opened, a black vest, and black, nice pants. He had a pair of black sneakers, which didn't really match the rest of his outfit, but wouldn't be noticed because of their correct color. He had a backpack with winter camo design at his feet.

    "Damn you mom," the boy muttered, fiddling with his collar. The hot, mid-July sun was killing him. His forehead was coated in droplets of sweat, even though the top window next to him was open. His mom had made him bring these nice clothes, because she wanted him to "look respectable while visiting such an important person as Professor Juniper". Stupidly enough, Vic hadn't thought about how hot it was going to be on the bus. Before he got on the bus, that is.

    Vic had always been interested in Pokémon, even as a child. Coming from a family where both parents had been talented trainers, this was hardly surprising. His love of Pokémon was shared by his older sister, Catherine. Cathy had left the family when she finished Junior High, and Vic's parents decided that Vic would be allowed to do the same.

    Vic's journey was different from Cathy's in many ways, however. Cathy had received her first Pokémon, a Mienfoo, from her parents on the day she was going to leave. Her parents had taught her as well as they could, but she hadn't had any official training in handling Pokémon, or, quite frankly, being a Trainer. When she left, Vic decided to do things differently, and signed up at a local Trainer School, run by one of Professor Juniper's friends. When he finished all of his courses, he would receive a diploma and a certificate that could be handed over to Professor Juniper in exchange for a Unova starter Pokémon.
    A smile spread on Vic's lips as he remembered the day he'd graduated from the Trainer School. It was at the end of the spring term, just before his fifteenth birthday. His parents had been happy and proud beyond belief, as was his sister, who, even though she wasn't present, shared the joy via Xtranceiver. Still, Vic had one more painful year of Junior High left before he could hit the road and start his own journey.

    And at last, that day had come. Vic had stayed home long enough to celebrate his birthday, but at that point the anticipation was almost killing him. His parents had paid for a ferry ride from Undella to Striaton City, where he'd taken a bus to Accumula Town, and from there another one to Nuvema Town. And there he was, drowning in sweat.

    The bus had slowed down without Vic noticing, and a sudden jerk snapped him out of his daydreams. He looked out the window, and instead of the grassy scenery of Route 1, small houses occupied his view. Vic grabbed his backpack and got off the bus, along with the few other passengers. He slung the backpack onto his shoulders as the bus left off, leaving a cloud of dust and exhaust fumes behind. A slight breeze was rolling in from the ocean. Vic closed his eyes and took a deep breath. The air tasted of the sea, just like at home. For a fraction of a second, Vic felt a little homesick, but the feeling passed as quickly as it had come.

    Vic checked his watch; 3.36 pm. He'd deliberately chosen a bus that left Accumula Town early, so he could be in Nuvema at a respectable time. He strolled off towards Professor Juniper's Pokémon lab, which wasn't very hard to find, thanks to the big wind turbines that stood next to it. Vic guessed that the winds coming from the sea would supply the lab with all the power it needed, even with the bunch of electrical apparatus which was bound to be found inside.

    Even though Vic was practically exploding from the excitement, he kept a calm, steady pace. He was too sweaty to run anyway. The wind gently touched his face and played with his short hair, a welcome cool after the hot prison of the bus. As he walked on, he observed the faces of people passing by. They all gave off a warm, cheerful radiance which made Vic smile. This place seemed so happy, in a completely different way than Undella Town. Undella was a tourist's city, especially in the summer, which made any kind of happiness feel fake, something nice for the visitors so that they'd return later.

    Vic's mind darted to the Pokémon which was soon going to be his. He was used to living around Pokémon, as, of course, neither of his parents had abandoned their partners. Still, he couldn't help but shiver in anticipation at the thought of his very own Pokémon. He knew how deep the bonds between his father and his Pokémon were, same went for his mother and her partners. The thought of being able to have such a relationship with a Pokémon himself seemed absolutely amazing.

    He'd picked his starter Pokémon a long time ago. It hadn't been an easy choice. He'd studied long and hard before making his decision. All three of the Unova starters had seemed absolutely incredible in their own, special way. He would've loved to pick all three, but unfortunately Professor Juniper only handed out one per trainer. Vic's mind was set, however, and he quickly abandoned those thoughts. He did not want to doubt his decision for a single second. He wanted to walk in completely certain about his choice.

    Before he knew it, Vic was standing in front of the Pokémon lab. The building was larger than the other houses of Nuvema Town, but it wasn't very big compared to many buildings Vic had seen before. Still, he managed to feel infinately small in front of the door. His excitement transformed into nervosity. Behind this door Professor Juniper waited. As did his first Pokémon.

    Vic steadied himself mentally. Inhaled deeply, exhaled.

    "Let's roll."
     
  2. Re: Let the Game Begin!

    Chapter 1: Decisions, Decisions

    The electronic doors closed behind Vic. The lab was so cool compared to the hot outside. The boy took a look around. The place seemed a complete mess. Electronic equipment was lying around on tables, shelves and the floor. Cardboard boxes occupied whatever space that the apparatus had left free. Vic took a few careful steps inside. What in blazes was going on here?

    Vic made an unintended jump as he saw something move in the corner of his eye. He spun around, almost losing his balance in the process. The object of movement turned out to be a man wearing a white lab coat. He’d been bent over, hidden behind a cardboard box with a bunch of electronics on top.

    The man noticed Vic, and turned to face him with a smile. “Oh, hi there! Didn’t see you there. How can I help you? We’re a bit busy now, as you can see.”

    “I can see that yeah,” Vic replied. “I’m here to see Professor Juniper. What’s going on here?”

    “We’re doing some cleaning and re-organizing,” he said with a smile. “You wouldn’t happen to be here for your first Pokémon?”

    Vic nodded. The mess inside of the lab had briefly managed to push out his excitement, but those feelings returned as the lab assistant asked him that question.

    “Right,” the man said, still smiling. “Can’t let something that important wait now, can we?” Vic smild as well, and decided he liked the man.

    The lab assistant turned towards an open door and yelled; “Professor Juniper!”

    “What is it?” a woman’s voice answered. “If it’s about the laser measuring equipment, I already told Tom…”

    “It’s not that,” the lab assistant interrupted. “There’s someone here to see you.”

    There was a brief pause. “Can it wait?”

    The man looked back at Vic. His smile looked sly, somehow. “I wouldn’t say so,” he shouted back, keeping his eyes on the boy.

    Vic thought he heard Professor Juniper sigh. “I’ll be right there.”

    The lab assistant grinned a bit wider, and gave Vic a thumbs up. “Excited?”

    “You bet,” Vic replied, grinning as well.

    “I know the feeling. I remember when I-“

    The man stopped as a woman stepping through the door. She was wearing a white lab coat, just like the assistant, with a green, knee-length skirt. Her hair was held in a bun on top of her head. Vic hadn’t seen Professor Juniper before, but he’d imagined something like this. Except for the hair, maybe. It looked interesting, to say the least.

    “Now who’s here to see me?” the professor asked, with a hint of irritation in her voice.

    Her face lit up a little as she laid eyes on Vic. “Is it you? Now how can I help such a handsome and well-clad young man?”

    Vic couldn’t help blushing a little. He hoped the professor hadn’t noticed. “I’m here to get my first Pokémon.”

    Professor Juniper’s face definitely lit up this time. “Oho, a young trainer! Well, come along with me here, and we’ll set you off! Mind your step!”

    The professor disappeared through the door, and Vic followed. The following room was larger, with a large table in the middle. There was still a bunch of stuff on the floor, but much less than in the previous room. Vic wondered why that’d be so, wouldn’t it be smarter to keep the foyer empty in case someone entered?

    The professor turned to face Vic. "I almost forgot," she said. "You must have some kind of certificate, right?"

    "Yeah, here it is," Vic said as he dug out the diploma he'd received at the Trainer's School and handed it to Professor Juniper.

    “Mmhmm. Everything seems to be in order. Wait here, I’ll go get the Pokémon,” she said after eyeing through the document. She disappeared through yet another door.

    Suddenly Vic was left alone among all of the equipment. He could hear the lab assistant whistling and moving about in the room he’d just left. Vic smiled. If only his mother were here to see the disorder! All of her lectures on how proper he had to be when meeting the professor meant nothing to him now.

    Professor Juniper returned a few minutes later. In one hand she held a black and red machine, which Vic recognized as a Pokédex, and in the other, three small red and white capsules. They were Poké Balls. And inside were the Pokémon.

    “Now, as you know, our world is filled with fabulous creatures known as Pokémon. We humans live alongside Pokémon-“

    “Professor,” Vic interrupted with a smile. Professor Juniper always held the same speech when giving trainers their first Pokémon, he’d heard. “I’d rather we just get to it.”

    Professor Juniper looked a bit astonished at first, but then smiled as well. “Right. You must be impatient.”

    “First we have the Grass type Pokémon, Snivy!” she exclaimed, pressing the center button of one of the Poké Balls, and tossing it into the air. A beam of red light shot out of the center button, hitting the table. The light began to take form, and suddenly, on the table in front of Vic, stood a Pokémon. The creature was slim, with a green backside and a beige underside. It’s tail ended in three leaves. The smug look that Snivy had become famous for was not absent on this one’s face.

    “Next up is Tepig, the fire type!” Professor Juniper repeated the motion, and next to Snivy, a new creature took form. This one was quite a bit rounder than the previous one. Its main coloring was a bright orange, with a black area on the head and on the rump, and a yellow spot on its snout. The Pokémon looked around with half opened eyes. It looked like it’d been sleeping.

    “Last but not least is Oshawott, the water type Pokémon!” For the third time, Professor Juniper tossed a Poké Ball into the air, and for the third time, a Pokémon appeared on the table. This Pokémon was not as chubby as Tepig, nor as slim as Snivy. It was blue and white, with a pale yellow shell on its belly. The Oshawott waved one of its short arms, and smiled up at Vic.

    “So,” Professor Juniper said. “These three are your options. All of them are amazing Pokémon, and will be great companions on your journey.”

    All of Vic's confidence was blown away by that one question. He'd felt a jolt of excitement as Professor Juniper released the Pokémon he'd decided on, but when he thought about it, he'd felt the same jolt when all the two other Pokémon appeared as well. Professor Juniper was right, they were all amazing Pokémon. I'd better stick to my choice. No regrets.

    Vic smiled at Professor Juniper with his entire face. "You're absolutely right, professor. I know that any one of these Pokémon would make a great partner. I'd love to pick all of them. But since I have to choose one, I'll go with..."

    OOC: Aren't I a spectacular douchebag? :p See you in August!
     
  3. Re: Let the Game Begin!

    Yes, you are, P_M. I have a feeling he will go with Oshawott, judging from his winter camo bag. He likes cold things, he'll like cold water!

    This is an interesting start. Undella seems to be a wealthy town, so I can see him coming from a relatively wealthy family.
     
  4. Re: Let the Game Begin!

    Chapter 2: The Worst Experience

    "Tepig. I choose Tepig."

    Vic's heart took a steep nose-dive, and time simply froze. That one second seemed to last forever. Tepig looked up at him. In what seemed to Vic as slow motion, Tepig's face lit up like a sun, and its eyes sparkled. Suddenly Tepig leaped straight up in the air, oinking and shrieking happily. Vic and Professor Juniper both laughed. Vic took a quick look at the two other Pokémon. Snivy was looking away, arms crossed. Vic guessed its pride was hurt, but it wouldn't admit it. Oshawott looked happy and sad at the same time, probably happy for Tepig, but sad it didn't get chosen itself.

    "All right then. It's time for all three of you to return to your Pokéballs," Professor Juniper said, returning all three to their respective Pokéballs. She then turned to face Vic. "Here's Tepig's Pokéball, as well as a badge case, a Pokédex, and five Pokéballs." Vic accepted the items the professor offered him.

    Professor Juniper looked away with a mildly troubled face. "There's something you need to know about Tepig. It's a bit... Special, in a sense. The thing is, I've had that same Tepig offered as a starter throught the entire summer. For some reason, only Snivy and Oshawott have been picked, so Tepig's confidence isn't too great." Professor Juniper looked at Vic again. "My suggestion is you give him a name. It'll make him feel a whole lot better. He's also somewhat naïve, so he'll definately appreciate it."

    "Thanks. I'll keep that in mind," Vic answered.

    He looked down at the Pokéball. A name? He knew he'd probably be naming his Pokémon, but for some reason, he had no clue what he'd call his newly obtained Tepig.

    "Now you should probably head off on your journey!" Professor Juniper interrupted. "Though your clothing doesn't seem too great for travel..."

    The summer heat came creeping back when the professor mentioned his clothes. The excitement had completely replaced his discomfort, but now it was returning.

    "You are absolutely, one hundred percent correct about that," Vic said, tugging at his collar again. "Is there somewhere I can change?"

    "Yeah, there's a bathroom right over there," the professor said, pointing at a door on the other side of the room.

    "Right. Thanks." Vic walked off towards the door, but suddenly froze in his tracks. He turned back to face Professor Juniper. "Oh, you wouldn't happen to have a clean, empty cardboard box?"

    "Yeah, we've got a few. What forr?" the professor asked.

    Vic explained his idea.

    Professor Juniper smiled. "All right, I'm in on that. Let me go get that box while you change."

    A minute later, Vic stepped out of the bathroom wearing a grey T-shirt and a pair of olive-green shorts. Professor Juniper was back as well, with the requested cardboard box and a piece of paper.

    "I also wrote the note at the same time." She smiled.

    "Great!" Vic exclaimed with a grin. "Can you take care of that? I'd like to spend some time with Tepig now."

    Professor Juniper laughed. "Of course! I'll make sure it gets done. Before you go, how about you register my Xtransceiver number? Just in case something comes up."

    "Sure," Vic said, and registered the number the professor gave him. The professor than registered Vic's number as well.

    "All right, that's that then," Professor Juniper smiled. "Now run along. I bet you can't wait to start your adventure!"

    "You're right about that," Vic grinned. "Bye professor, and thank you so much for everything!"

    "No problem. It's my job, after all," Professor Juniper said.

    And with those words, Vic exited the lab.

    ~***~​


    Vic stood outside of Professor Juniper's lab. The sun was radiating heat, just like before, but he felt better now that he'd gotten out of his stupid outfit. Tepig's Pokéball was warm in his hand. It was probably just the heat warming up the metal, but Vic imagined that it was Tepig's heat. Professor Juniper had suggested that Vic gave him a name. He still had no idea what he would call his Tepig.

    Vic swallowed the lump in his throat.

    "All right, come on out, Tepig!" he exclaimed, tossing the Pokéball into the air.

    The red-and-white orb flew up high, and shot out a red beam which rushed to the ground, where it materialized into Tepig. The force of the beam was powerful enough to shoot the Pokéball right back into Vic's hand.

    Vic knelt down to the same level as Tepig. The little Pokémon took a cautious step backwards, and looked up at Vic with big eyes.

    Vic smiled at Tepig. "Hey there! My name's Vic!" He held out a hand. What for, he didn't know. It wasn't as if Tepig was going to shake it.

    Tepig didn't move.

    Vic tried again. "I'm your Pokémon trainer. We'll be traveling through Unova together. I hope we can become best friends!"

    Tepig stood still for a while. Then, he took a careful step towards Vic. And another. He stretched his neck, and quickly licked Vic's hand. Tepig's tongue was wet and warm, as it should be.

    "I've studied a lot about your species, but I still want to do this," Vic said, digging into his bag. "It's somewhat of a tradition."

    When Vic pulled out his hand, it was holding the Pokédex Professor Juniper had given him before. Tepig looked at the device with a surprized gaze, but Vic thought he sensed a hint of recognition as well. If you've spent most of your life in a Pokémon lab, you ought to recognize a Pokédex, Vic figured.

    Vic aimed the Pokédex's camera at Tepig. The screen popped to life, and various pictures and information of Tepig appeared.

    "Tepig, the Fire Pig Pokémon. It blows fire through its nose, and uses this fire to roast berries before eating them. When it is ill, it will only blow out black smoke."

    Vic grinned past the Pokédex at Tepig, who now looked cautiously curious. "Of course I knew all of that. As I said, it's a tradition for new trainers to check out their first Pokémon's Pokédex entry."

    Vic pressed an icon on the 'Dex's touch screen. "I wonder what moves you know. Tackle and Tail Whip, probably."

    "Known moves: Tackle. Tail Whip," the Pokédex confirmed with it's mechanical voice.

    "Kinda guessed," Vic laughed. He put the Pokédex back in his bag. Then he turned back to Tepig. "I don't know about you, but I'm starving. How about we head somewhere for lunch?"

    Tepig nodded carefully. Vic sighed internally. This wasn't going to be easy.

    Vic raised Tepig's Pokéball to call the Pokémon back, but just as he opened his mouth, he stopped. "You know what," Vic said, as he re-minimized Tepig's Pokéball. "I think I'm going to let you stay outside of your Pokéball. That way we can get to know each other a bit as we walk."

    So Tepig and Vic headed off to find a café. Vic wasn't quite sure what to do, so he started talking about himself. About his interests, his home, his parents, his sister, everything he could quickly recall about his life. After a while, Vic noticed that Tepig was gradually loosening up. He smiled whenever Vic said something funny, and he made his first replying sounds. Admittedly, they were only oinks and grunts, but much more couldn't be expected from a young Pokémon such as Tepig.

    After about fifteen minutes, Vic and Tepig ended up at a small, outdoor café. They decided to sit down, and Vic ordered a Pecha sandwhich for himself and some Oran berries for Tepig. As he munched down on his sandwhich, he watched Tepig curiously. Tepig had piled up all of the berries in front of him, and after inhaling deeply, he blew out a few sparks at them.

    "Wow," Vic said, his mouth filled with food. "I know the Pokédex said that Tepigs do that, but I'm still impressed."

    "Tepig te!" Tepig replied happily, and attacked one of the berries.

    "Oh, so someone DID pick Tepig after all."

    Vic spun around. Right behind him was a boy who looked to be around his own age, possibly slightly older. His hair was dark blonde and tied back in a long ponytail. He was wearing glasses and a blue t-shirt, along with a pair of jeans. What Vic noticed first, however, was the boy's superior look. It might've been the fact that he was standing, and therefore higher up, or it might just have been his natural face, but somehow Vic instantly knew that this boy thought very highly of himself, and didn't have much nice to say about others.

    "Uh, yeah," Vic said, quickly swallowing his sandwhich. "Me and Tepig have just met. My name's Vic Johnson."

    "Jonathan," the boy replied quickly, as if introduction was a necessity that he'd rather be without. "I've been hanging out in this town all summer, just so I could beat all three starter Pokémon before I head out on my journey. I've beat Snivies and Oshawotts, but it seems nobody has picked Tepig over the entire summer. I want to battle you and your Tepig."

    Vic looked at Tepig. The Fire Pig Pokémon looked uneasy. Tepig was torn between his own unwillingness to battle and the trust that Vic had showed him by sharing his life with him. There was a small bond between the two of them already.

    "What's the matter?" Jonathan asked, clearly irritated. "Don't tell me you're scared. I hate cowards."

    "Me and Tepig aren't cowards!" Vic burst out. "Of course we'll acept your challenge! Right, Tepig?"

    "Te... Tepig," Tepig nodded. It seemed as if he didn't have much of a choice.

    Jonathan smirked. "There's a battling field close to Professor Juniper's lab. I'll wait there." And then he walked off.

    Vic turned back to his sandwhich. "The nerve of that guy!" Vic exclaimed. "If he wanted to battle he could've just asked nicely. He just popped up out of nowhere, demanded a battle, and provoked us when we hesitated."

    He suddenly stopped. Vic faced Tepig with a slightly worried face. "Are you ok with this battle?"

    Tepig looked up at Vic. He nodded carefully.

    Vic sighed. "I'm sorry. I know we shouldn't be battling yet, we still don't know each other too well. It's just... I couldn't just swallow the fact that he called us cowards. I'm so sorry."

    Tepig looked at his trainer, confused. Just a few seconds ago, Vic had been exclaiming that they wanted to battle. His battle spirit had been high, even if he had been insulted. Now, he seemed to be all out of spirit, apologizing to Tepig. And how had he known that Tepig didn't want to battle? Right now, that didn't matter. Tepig decided to make the best of the situation they were in.

    "Tepig!" Tepig exclaimed with a smile.

    Vic smiled slightly as well. "Thanks buddy. Now, let's finish our lunch and head over to the battling field, ok?"

    "Tepig!"

    ~***~​

    Ten minutes later, Vic and Tepig approached the battlefield. It was a clearing in the trees, where the grass had been worn away to reveal the dirt below. Vic guessed that it had been used as a battling field for quite some time. Jonathan was standing on the opposite side of the field. Vic felt his spirits rise. Together, he and Tepig would teach this guy a lesson. Tepig, on the other hand, did not feel very good about this battle at all. He would give it his best, but he was afraid his trainer would lose respect for him.

    Jonathan must've heard them coming. "About time," he said when they arrived at the opposite side of the field. "I've been waiting here long enough. Let's just get this show on the road."

    "Fine then!" Vic exclaimed. "Tepig, are you ready?" As he said it, he realized the answer was most likely no.

    "T-Tepig!" Tepig said, faking confidence and failing.

    Jonathan turned around. "Your Tepig's right to be afraid. Mefesto, let's go!"

    Jonathan tossed a Pokéball into the air. The red beam that shot out turned into a white Pokémon about twice the size of Tepig. It seemed to be covered in some kind of fur, and it had five red horns sticking out of its body.

    "What kind of Pokémon is that?" Vic muttered, as he dug out his Pokédex.

    The 'Dex had the answer, of course. "Larvesta, the Torch Pokémon. They make their homes at the bases of volcanoes. Larvesta can produce fire from its horns. The fire repels wild Pokémon, and engulfs the user upon evolution."

    "A Bug-Fire type, huh. We should be pretty evenly matched."

    Jonathan snorted, as if holding back a laugh. "As if. Your Tepig is no match for my Mefesto. I'll let you have the first move. It doesn't matter, in the end. It's not like you're beating me anytime soon."

    "I'm gonna make you eat those words with mustard!" Vic yelled, steaming. "Tepig! Lead off with Tackle!"

    "Tepig," Tepig confirmed with a nod. He then rushed off towards Larvesta.

    "Tsk," Jonathan said calmly. "Such a foolishly straightforward battling style. Trip Tepig with String Shot, Mefesto."

    Vic didn't notice any reaction from the Pokémon, but it still fired a fine, light grey string from what Vic assumed was its mouth. The string hit Tepig's feet, binding them together, and causing Tepig to trip and crash into the ground right in front of Larvesta.

    "Now, hit it with Take Down!" Jonathan ordered.

    Mefesto reared back a few steps, then smashed forcefully into Tepig. The impact sent Tepig flying several meters, but also seemed to hurt Larvesta at the same time. Tepig winced, he wasn't far from Vic.

    "Try to struggle free!" Vic called desperately.

    "Don't let that happen! Use Leech Life, quick!"

    Mefesto came rushing towards Tepig, who was desperately trying to break free of the String Shot. Vic could clearly see how hard Tepig was trying, but to no avail. The strings around his feet would not budge.

    Vic managed a "No!" before Mefesto came up to Tepig, and clamped down on the Fire Pig Pokémon's throat. Tepig screeched as the Larvesta started draining the little Pokémon's health. Vic could see how Tepig's struggling became weaker and weaker byt the second.

    Still, Tepig had fought long enough when he was at better health to weaken the strings. Finally Tepig managed to break free, and Tackle away Mefesto upon getting loose. Vic looked worriedly at the battlefield. Tepig was panting heavily, obviously very injured. Mefesto, on the other hand, seemed to be at almost full health, even after the Take Down.

    Jonathan snorted in contempt. "How pathetic. So hurt, by just a Take Down and a Leech Life. Give it up already. This battle's over."

    "It's not over until I say it is!" Vic yelled. "Use Tackle, Tepig!" Tepig inhaled to gather power, then rushed off at Larvesta again.

    "Same thing again?" Jonathan asked. "What do you think will be different this time? String Shot, again."

    "Jump Tepig!"

    Tepig ordered. Using what little energy he had left, he jumped up, avoiding the String Shot, which passed below him.

    "Tepig is a sitting Ducklett! String Shot again!" Jonathan called. Mefesto took aim at Tepig again. The Fire Pig Pokémon couldn't avoid in midair, and so the Bug-type attack made contact.

    "Now, smash Tepig into the ground!" The Larvesta responded by spinning around, jerking the string, and therefore Tepig as well, downwards. Tepig's terrified scream was interrupted by the hard impact with the ground, which swirled up a large cloud of dust.

    "TEPIG!" Vic roared.

    The dust settled. Vic made out an orange shape on the ground; Tepig. He was lying on his side, face frozen in a grimace of pain. But he wasn't going to get up anymore, not this battle. Jonathan and Mefesto had won.

    "Tepig! NO!"

    Vic sped off towards his heavily injured Pokémon.

    "Stop!"

    Vic looked up to see Jonathan holding up an open hand to indicate for Vic to stop.

    "Get off the field. We're not finished," he said.

    Vic couldn't believe his ears. Was Jonathan crazy or something? "What are you talking about? Look at my Tepig's condition!"

    Jonathan pushed up his glasses with his middle finger. "Your Tepig doesn't look too healthy, I agree. But earlier you said that it isn't over until you say so. So that means the battle is still going, hm?"

    Vic stared at Jonathan in disbelief. "You've got to be kidding." The words were barely more than a whisper.

    "Right then, Mefesto, use-"

    "STOP!"

    Vic was panting heavily. Partially out of worry for Tepig, but mostly out of pure frustration towards the prick that was Jonathan. The boy looked at Vic with a somewhat curious and amuzed gaze.

    "It's over," Vic said. "You've won." He couldn't hold it back anymore. He picked up Tepig, and cradled the Fire Pig Pokémon in his arms. He started sobbing, holding Tepig tight against his body, as if the small Fire-type was the only thing real left in this world.

    "Well then, return, Mefesto," Jonathan said, and the Larvesta returned to its Pokéball.

    The boy walked up to Vic, who was still on the ground. "I understand why nobody picked Tepig this summer. What I don't understand is why you decided to become a Trainer at all. Some people should never be given Pokémon."

    The sun had become hidden behind a thick veil of clouds. Jonathan turned, and left the destroyed boy and his Tepig.

    OOC: Whew, finally done with this somewhat monstrous chapter (for me, at least). Also, yaay, something's happened! I'm sorry about the two first chapters, they were undoubtedly boring ^^;

    Douches will be douches. Jonathan was inspired by Paul and Trip from the animé, though he's obviously worse than Trip, at least, and I thought he even made Paul look nice.

    I don't have much more to say on that. I'll try to get the next chapter up sometime around the end of next week, but it's not a promise ^^; School starts on Tuesday, so that'll kill some of my writing time, obviously.

    Oh, and I've been playing 358/2 Days lately (Beat it yesterday, actually) The reference shouldn't be too hard to find ;)
     
  5. Update: I only now realised I could change the title if I wanted to... Besides this, chapter 4 is in the making. It's going a bit slowly cos I'm a bit stuck at this one part, but it'll still be up at some point, if anyone cares.
     
  6. Chapter 3: Knowing Me, Knowing You

    The steaming cup of Iapapa tea warmed a very distant Vic's hands. He was staring blankly ahead, Tepig watching him with concerned eyes. After their humiliating defeat at the hands of Jonathan, Vic had run to a herbal drugstore that he'd spotted on the way to Professor Juniper's lab. A heavy rain had commenced as he ran, and he'd been thoroughly soaked when he arrived. As it turned out, the woman of the drugstore was a nice old lady, who also ran a guesthouse for trainers passing by. When she'd treated Tepig, she had offered Vic a cup of tea, to warm himself.

    The room was almost empty. A young man sat with a newspaper at a few tables away, but other than that, the place was empty. In a few hours time, the place would fill up with people coming in for dinner, but that was still a bit away.

    "You can leave, if you want to," Vic said. He was still staring blankly at the opposite wall.

    Tepig looked up at Vic, who returned the gaze. "If you don't want me to be your trainer, you don't have to stay."

    Tepig stared at Vic. He couldn't comprehend what the boy was saying.

    "That entire battle was the result of my impulsiveness. You were hurt because I couldn't stand being called a coward. Jonathan was right about one thing; I shouldn't have become a trainer in the first place."

    "Excuse me."

    Vic's and Tepig's heads darted towards the direction of the sound. It came from the man sitting a few tables away. Vic hadn't really looked at the guy until now. His hair was long, spiky, and chestnut-colored. He was wearing a black hoodie, and torn jeans. His most notable feature, however, was his eyes. They were deep green, but somehow seemed to burn with a passionate fire.

    Without a warning, the man came over and pulled out a chair. "I've listened to what you've said. I can kind of picture the scene, but would you mind telling me in more detail?"

    "It's painful," Vic said, and then, in a harsher tone, "Who invited you to come over?"

    "I did," the man replied with a dismissive gesture. "Now how about telling me that story?"

    "I already said no." Vic snorted. "It's too painful."

    "Are you afraid of pain?"

    Vic spun around and was about to shout a reply, when he suddenly stopped himself.

    "See what I did there?" the man asked. "You almost comitted the same mistake again."

    Vic was silent. Was he really that transparent?

    The man sighed. "Sorry, I'm being a bit blunt. Let's try this again. My name's Alec Polson. I'm a Pokémon Trainer, just like you. I couldn't help but overhear what you said to your Tepig here," Alec patted Tepig, who seemed to like it, "and I decided that you may need some help. You sounded pretty desperate, telling your Tepig to go away and all."

    "I-it's not like that," Vic muttered. He looked at Tepig. Suddenly he felt embarassed. Had he really sounded as if he'd told Tepig to go away? Because that was definately not the case. He'd tried to make it sound like an offer, prioritizing Tepig's interests over his own.

    "Well what is it like then? I want to help you, and I bet you want me to help you too, even if you most likely won't admit it. But for that to happen, I need the story in detail."

    Vic was silent for a while. "You read me pretty well, don't you?" he asked, after a while.

    Alec smiled. "Like a book."

    Vic couldn't help but smile a little himself. "My name's Vic Johnson."

    "A pleasure. Now, please tell me about the things you two've gone through."

    Vic reached out for Tepig, who snuggled up against his Trainer. He'd need the Fire Pig Pokémon by his side, physically as well as mentally, if he was going to make it through the story. Vic took a sip of his Iapapa tea, and sighed. He then proceeded to tell Alec the entire story, from Professor Juniper's lab to the point where Alec had overheard.

    Alec rubbed his chin. "Wow. That was quite the eventful first day as a Trainer."

    "No shit," Vic replied, sighing again.

    "Let's think this through now," Alec said. "You and Tepig seem to be quite the interesting couple. You, Vic, seem to be pretty impulsive. You let your emotions get the upper hand in situations like these. You do this, because it's a habit from your old, safe environment. There, you were confident in your abilities. You knew your stuff, and thus you could risk being impulsive. Now that you're in a new situation, however, your confidence is falling, because you've learnt the hard way that this is not what you're used to. Am I somewhat correct?"

    Vic nodded. Alec could not have been more correct.

    "While Tepig, on the other hand, is quite an unconfident Pokémon. You've lived your life seeing other Pokémon come and go around you. Your confidence might've been a lot better at first, but constant rejection from incoming trainers slowly whittled that away. Your biggest dream up until this day has been to get chosen by a Trainer. Now that it's happened, you certainly are happy, but you're very unsure of how to behave. All of your life you thought you wanted to get chosen by a Trainer, even though you never really knew why. Would you agree?"

    Tepig nodded carefully.

    "Now, while both of you are unique, there is one aspect of you which is very similar. You're both very unselfish. Vic, I heard what you said to your Tepig before. You obviously blame yourself for what happened today. But, I'll bet you that Tepig is blaming himself just as much as you're blaming yourself. Tepig probably feels that he failed the bond of trust you two've already formed, and thinks you're disappointed with him. To Tepig, the "go away" thing may have sounded just like that; "go away", because he was to busy blaming himself."

    Vic stared at Alec in disbelief. He slowly turned his gaze to Tepig. "I-is... Is this true, Tepig?"

    Tepig turned his head away in shame.

    "N-no, that's not at all what I meant! W-what I meant was... was..."

    "Shush." Alec's voice was harsh and soothing at the same time.

    "Tepig. You are very happy to have Vic as a trainer. This is what you've been waiting for the entire summer. You don't want to give it up now, do you?" Tepig shook his head. "Then don't blame yourself. Being with a trainer is all about working together. You are obviously quite unconfident, but this is a new situation for Vic as well. You have to be able to lean on each other."

    "And you." Alec turned to Vic. "Everything I said to Tepig goes for you as well. But you made a much worse mistake. You started off with a confident attitude, and then dropped it when things went bad. You gave Tepig the impression that you were strong and independent, and that Tepig could learn something from you. But when you hit a bump, you crumbled to pieces, implying to Tepig either that you weren't as strong as he thought you were, or that the failure was so bad that there's no hope for him. And out of those two, I bet it's the latter. This particular critique is not aimed at you, Tepig, but at Vic."

    Vic opened his mouth, but Alec cut him off. "Now neither of you should be wallowing in misery. What you should be doing is working together to become stronger. Make sure this never happens again. This Jonathan guy only left on his journey now, correct? Even if you stay in Nuvema Town for a few days, you'll most likely run into him again on your journey, assuming that you both take the gym challenge. Train hard, so that the next time you meet him, you can beat him thoroughly. What do you say?"

    Vic didn't say anything. He felt quite demolished by Alec's relentless crtitiques. If anything, he felt even more failed as a trainer now. But that was exactly what Alec had meant. He shouldn't be letting his misery drown him. Now was the time to train hard. Had he really thought his entire time as a trainer would go smooth like a dance? He'd known he'd face rough times. And going home was not an option. He had set his mind to this, he couldn't possibly swallow it and head home.

    And Tepig. What would happen to Tepig if he gave up? Tepig would return to Professor Juniper's lab, his confidence even worse than before. Nobody would pick him, and even if someone did, they'd probably just return him because he was too hard to train. Vic couldn't possibly let that happen.

    "Yes," Vic whispered. Then, with more power. "Yes! We're doing this damnit! You're absolutely right, we can't give up now! Right Tepig?"

    Vic looked at Tepig. The gaze he met was definately not one he'd expected. He'd expected Tepig to be up for it as well, right behind his trainer. Instead, Tepig looked torn, confused and ashamed. Vic smiled cautiously.

    "Listen, I know our previous battle went quite bad, but we can't stop there. It was our first battle, we still don't know each other very well. Jonathan and his Larvesta knew each other much better than we do. If we work towards this goal together, we can be just as good as them. In fact, we can be even better, so that when we see them again, we can make them pay for humiliating us. Do you want to work towards this moment with me?"

    Tepig was still for a moment. Then, he nodded carefully. The Fire Pig Pokémon started nodding more, and Vic could sense the same reaction he'd had before. Tepig got up and snorted triumphantly. They were going to do this.

    Alec smiled. "Well, it's great to hear that you two have made up your minds. How about you stay here in Nuvema Town for a while, to train together? You can stay with me, I can sleep on the couch in my room. I'm sure mrs. Aeda won't mind, right?"

    The old woman, who'd been arranging bottles of brightly colored spices behind the counter, looked at Alec with a smile. "Not at all. Stay for as long as you wish."

    "Thank you," Vic said with a nod and a smile in mrs. Aeda's direction. He then turned to Alec. "And thank you, thank you so much. I can't begin to overstate how much I appreciate your help, and I think Tepig will agree." The Fire Pig Pokémon nodded eagerly as well. Vic ruffled patted Tepig's head.

    "It was nothing," Alec replied. "I'm glad I could be of help. Trainers need to help each other out whenever they can. I hope you'll remember that whenever you meet someone in need of help. A friend in need is a friend indeed."

    "You bet! We'll use this meeting as a reminder of that, right Tepig?" Tepig grinned back up at his trainer.

    Alec nodded, satisfied. "The rain seems to have stopped," he remarked. "I'm going to go see a friend in town now. I suggest you two spend some time together. I think it's best to leave the training for tomorrow, yeah?"

    "Yeah, I agree," Vic answered. "I think Tepig and I will be up in your room, if you don't mind. Which number is it?"

    "Number 7," Alec said as he went back to the table he'd originally sat at, and got his jacket. From his left pocket he dug out a key, and tossed it to Vic. "And that's probably a good idea. When will we have dinner, mrs. Aeda?"

    "I was thinking half past seven, does that sound good?" asked the old lady.

    "That sounds splendid," Alec said with a smile. "I'll be back at quarter past. See you then, mrs. Aeda, Vic." And with that, he headed off.

    Vic and Tepig went up to Alec's room. Vic was slightly unsure of what to do, so he started off by telling Tepig more about his home, family, and life up until then. The atmosphere was slightly awkward at first, seeing as Tepig couldn't really contribute, but gradually the mood lightened up. Tepig seemed honestly interested in Vic's tales, getting carried away at the same pace as his trainer. Before they knew it, the boy and the Fire Pig Pokémon were wrestling on the floor, laughing wildly.

    At seven fifteen precisely, Alec returned from his friend's house. Vic and Tepig happily interrogated him, and their good mood infected Alec as well. At half past, the trio headed downstairs for an amazingly delicious dinner, consisting of spinach soup and bread, with a wonderful Salac pie for dessert. Mrs. Aeda seemed to have no other visitors at the time, so she ate with Vic, Tepig and Alec. The table conversation was mostly between mrs. Aeda and Alec, but both Vic and Tepig, who seemed to like the spinach soup a great deal, followed the discussion with much interest. Still, throughout the meal, Vic wondered where Alec's Pokémon were, as he had said he was a trainer before.

    Vic and Tepig were both completely stuffed after plenty of refills of both main course and dessert. Mrs. Aeda laughed, and said she was delighted that someone enjoyed her cooking so much. Alec thanked for the food, and excused himself as he got up.

    "Where are you going?" Vic asked.

    "A walk," Alec replied. "There's nothing like a walk on a summer evening. I suppose you don't want to come along?"

    Vic shook his head. "Too full. I think I'd just explode. I'm actually feeling really tired, so I think I'll head to bed early. How 'bout you Tepig?" That question was already answered, as Tepig was drowsing against Vic's arm. Vic chuckled and cradled the Fire Pig Pokémon in his arms.

    "Right, then," Alec replied. "I'm off. I'll try to be back before ten at the latest. Bye!" Mrs. Aeda and Vic waved after him as he left.

    The old lady then turned to the boy. "I can bring you a cup of hot chocolate in a few minutes, if you'd like."

    "It'd be absolutely lovely if you could do that," Vic said, smiling appreciatively. "I can not thank you enough for your kindness and hospitality."

    Mrs. Aeda smiled cunningly. "Oh nonsense, you're quite welcome. Alec has been helping me around here, so letting him have an extra guest is the least I can do in return."

    Vic made it up to room number 7 again, where he placed a pillow on the floor next to the couch, upon which he placed his sleeping friend. A few minutes later, mrs. Aeda knocked on the door, and gave Vic his cup. Vic thanked her, and wished her a good night. He then sat down on the sofa with his cup.

    The setting sun was casting an orange glow on the world. Alec's room had a splendid view of the sunset over the ocean, where only a few vague islands of route 18 disturbed the picture. Vic sipped his chocolate as he watched a couple of Ducklett play outside. What a day... So much had happened, both good things and bad. He looked down at Tepig. The Fire Pig Pokémon was sleeping calmly, his sides heaving in and out at a steady pace. Vic couldn't believe that they had actually only met the same day. Even though Tepig did have a problem in being unconfident, Vic had managed to open up to the little fellow, and he thought he could sense some kind of bond between them already. He was sincerely sorry for what Tepig had had to go through on this eventful first day, but he was sure that they could work through it together. Under the cautious shell, Vic was certain that Tepig was a fighter, both physically and mentally.

    After he finished his chocolate, Vic grabbed a pillow of his own, and laid down on the couch. He figured he ought to call home, but that would ruin his little surprise... He'd call back later, after the package arrived. Alec arrived about an hour and a half later, but by then Vic was sound asleep.

    OOC: I live! I sincerely apologize for the ginormous wait in actual content. I can blame it partially on writer's block and a stupid chapter which was arduous to write because nothing happened, but only that much. It was still mostly me procastrinating, and for that I'm sorry. I'll try to be more frequent with updates in the future.

    Content-wise, this chapter is key to the entire story, and to the characters in general. We're introduced to a new OC, Alec Polson, a man we know very little of, other than the fact that he's a trainer. We don't even know what Pokémon he has yet (I do, of course, but you guys don't :p )This very character brings about some character development in both Vic and Tepig, which is also key.

    To top it off, the title is a reference to Swedish pop culture. Rolly would be proud of me :')
     

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