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Let's Play Journal of Alpha-Sapphire: Entry 2: New Friends Around Every Corner

by Psycho Monkey

Psycho Monkey Sapphire gets friendlier with May and meets some new friends along his travels, both Pokémon and human alike. In all honesty, I probably wouldn't have had this entry up if it weren't for #summercamp15 so expect a few more entries in the next two weeks as I strive to fill the quota of the contest! >:D
Entry 2: New Friends Around Every Corner

Once I was sure I had all of the supplies I needed for my journey, I said my goodbyes to Mom and out the door I went. If I walked at a steady pace and didn’t get lost, I should be able to make it to Petalburg City before my Dad closes his Gym. I doubt he’ll let me battle with him, but I at least want to show him Alpha and tell him in person that I’ve become a Trainer. ^_^

I’m a Trainer. Those words still don’t feel real! It’s something I’ve wanted my whole life and now all I have to do is look at my awesome Mudkip to know it’s finally happened! When I reached the town boarder to Route 101, I turned around to take in the sight of my new hometown one more time. I know I just moved to Littleroot, but it looks like I won’t be spending my first night in Hoenn at home. It will probably be a few months before I actually sleep in my own bed at my new house. :p As I was about to turn around to head up Route 101, I saw May running up to meet me.

“Sapphire!” she called waving at me.

“Hi May! Did you want to leave together?” I asked her. I wouldn’t mind having her as a travelling companion actually. ♥

“I’m glad I caught up to you Sapphire. My dad forgot to give you a DexNav app for your PokéNav Plus back at his lab.” she said.

“A DexNav?” I inquired.

“It’s an app that works in tandem with your Pokédex! It can tell you lots about the Pokémon living in each area and that kind of stuff. It’s a handy app to have if you’re trying to catch lots of different Pokémon. For example, if you meet a Trainer with a really cool Pokémon that you’ve never seen before, it will register in your Pokédex and your DexNav will tell you where it can be found in the wild. Also, if you encounter a Wild Pokémon, the DexNav will automatically register it in your Pokédex! It’s really neat!” explained May excitedly.

“Sounds like it! So do I have to go back to see Prof. Birch or…”

“No worries! I have the SD card for it so just hand me your PokéNav and I can install it right here.” she offered. I did as told and after doing her thing with it, May gave it back to me. “There you go! All done!” she said. May then reached into her pouch and pulled out a bunch of Pokéballs. “These are a gift from me so you can start catching Pokémon right away. I also forgot to give them to you back at the lab.” she apologized while adorably rubbing the back of her head. ♥

“No need to apologize! Thank you so much! You didn’t need to go to the trouble just for me.” I said modestly.

“It’s really no trouble at all Sapphire. My dad gave me Pokéballs when I first became a Trainer so consider it a rite of passage. You can also call it a ‘Welcome to the neighborhood’ present.” May said.

“Thanks May. I really do appreciate it.” I thanked with a smile. :)

“You’re welcome.” she said with her own super cute smile! ♥

With that the two of us headed up Route 101 together! ^_^ It was a pleasant trek. One thing that surprised me was how few Wild Pokémon we ran into. I don’t know if it was because this was a short Route, the Wild Pokémon in this area generally stayed away from people, or if they were intimidated by two Trainers traveling together. After that Poochyena incident this morning I was expecting to get ambushed left and right.

“So May. Why aren’t we running into more Pokémon out here?” I asked her. She said she helped her dad with research out here all the time so she would probably have a better idea than any reason I came up with.

“You just aren’t looking hard enough. Check it out over there.” she said pointing to a nearby tree. Crawling on one of the branches was a Wurmple. “A few meters back we also passed a Zigzagoon burrow. When looking for Pokémon, you have to keep your eyes and ears open Sapphire. When traveling alone you’re more likely to get jumped by Wild Pokémon, but sometimes the Trainer has to be the one to take the initiative.” So smart!~ May then quickly turned her head as if she suddenly heard something.

“What’s up?” I asked. May put her pointer finger to her lip.

“Shhh. Do you hear that rustling? There is a Wild Pokémon nearby.” she whispered. I started looking around trying to find where it was coming from. I then felt May tug my sleeve.

“Did you find it?” I whispered.

“Mhm. Over there. Do you see that tail sticking out?” she said pointing to a patch of tall grass. She then pulled out her PokéNav and checked her DexNav. “What luck! It seems to know a rare move too!” she cheered quietly. I pulled out my DexNav and did the same. The silhouette on the screen was a Poochyena and next to it was the word ‘Fire Fang.’ That must be its rare move.

“So what now?” I inquired.

“Why don’t you try sneaking up on it? Move very slowly. If you’re too fast you might startle it and scare it away.” suggested May. I nodded in understanding before getting on my tippy-toes and moving as slowly and cautiously as I could. I stealthily crept up on the Poochyena until I was right behind it.

“Go Alpha!” I called. The Bite Pokémon turned around in surprise as my Mudkip emerged from his Pokéball. The Poochyena lowered its head snarling as the hair on its back bristled out. “Attack with Water Gun!” I called. Alpha opened his mouth unleashing a spray of water at the small canine. Poochyena retaliated by engulfing its jaws in flames and biting Alpha for little damage.

“Try a Tackle this time Alpha!” I commanded. The Mudfish Pokémon rammed his head into Poochyena knocking it to its side. The Wild Pokémon weakly got back up then bit Alpha with another Fire Fang. I reached into my backpack for one of the Pokéballs May gave me.

“Let’s do this!” I declared throwing the ball. It hit Poochyena in the head before opening and turning the Pokémon into a red light which was then drawn into it. The Pokéball shook as Poochyena tried to break free. Once. Twice. Thrice. And then the ball clicked!

“I… I did it! I actually caught a Pokémon!” I cheered excitedly. :’D

“Congratulations Sapphire!” praised May running up to me. “That was awesome! Not just because you caught the Poochyena, but your sneaking too! Even I sometimes have trouble sneaking up on Pokémon without being noticed.” she admit sheepishly.

“Nah. It was all beginners luck. Besides, if I didn’t have you here, I would have either run after it causing it to flee or missed it entirely, so thank you for helping out.” I thanked.

“Any time! So are you going to name your Poochyena?” asked May.

“Probably not. I’m actually really bad at coming up with nicknames. If it wasn’t for your dad telling me my Mudkip was the alpha male of his colony, I don’t know what I would have come up with. Probably something silly like Kippo or something.” That got a cute giggle out of May. ♥

After that, nothing really eventful happened before we got to Oldale Town. Unfortunately, that was where we split up. T^T While I went to the Pokémon Center to get my Pokémon healed up, May decided she was going to continue to Route 102. She said it would be easier for us to catch Wild Pokémon if we were separated. On the one hand, Wild Pokémon were more likely to go after lone travelers, and on the other, we wouldn’t have to compete for catching any we did run into. I understood her point, but I like hanging out with her too. ;_;

“Welcome to our Pokémon Center! Do you need your Pokémon healed?” asked the nurse at the desk of the Pokémon Center.

“Yes I do.” I answered politely even though I was thinking ‘Duh, I wouldn’t be here if I didn’t!’ :|

“Excuse me, could you draw a number from this bag?” requested a brown-haired woman dressed in blue standing by the counter.

“What for?” I asked.

“We’re holding a drawing for a rare Pokémon at the request of a man named Steven.” the woman explained. “He said that all Trainers who walk into this Pokémon Center today should enter.”

“Sure, why not? How can I say no to a rare Pokémon?” I accepted. It seemed a bit strange that this Steven person would just give away a rare Pokémon in a raffle, but I’m sure he had his reasons if only out of sheer generosity. I stuck my hand in the bag and pulled out a ticket with the numbers 61156 on it.

“Let’s see…” said the woman running my number through her laptop. “Oh wow! Congratulations!” she cheered.

“I won!?” I cried in disbelief. =0

“Yup! You are the winner of the rare Pokémon, a silver Beldum!” she congratulated me. She pulled a crimson red Pokéball from her waist and handed it to me.

“This is no joke! You are seriously giving me a rare Pokémon for nothing?” I questioned still unable to believe this was real. My luck cannot seriously be this good! 0_0

“I was told to entrust this Pokémon to which ever Trainer won the drawing and you are that lucky Trainer.” affirmed the woman. I hesitantly reached out and took the Pokéball.

“Alright, let’s meet my new Pokémon then!” I called throwing the sphere. Emerging was a silver Pokémon with a small rough head made up of only one red eye, and a long arm with gold claws making up the rest of the body. “So you’re Beldum then?” I asked it. It bobbed its body forward in a nod. “Nice to meet you. I’m Sapphire. Welcome to the team!” I greeted.

“Sir.” called the nurse. “Your Pokémon are fully healed. Please come again whenever you need it!” she said cheerfully.

“Alright, thank you!” I replied as I took back Alpha and Poochyena.

With now three Pokémon in hand, I headed west to Route 102. When I got to the edge of town I saw the man that was sketching footprints earlier sitting on the side of the road sobbing.

“Is everything alright?” I asked him.

“I…*sob* I was sketching the footprints of a rare Pokémon, but… *sob* but…” he held up his sketchpad which had a perfectly drawn shoeprint on it. “They were my ooooown!” he cried before bursting into tears. Idiot. >> Seriously, how does someone not notice that? I just continued walking past him. I needed to get to Petalburg City to visit my dad but I also wanted to catch up to May as well as catch some more Pokémon.

While walking up Route 102, I did as May suggested. I kept a diligent eye out for Wild Pokémon and I listened for any rustling grass that might alert me to any hidden Pokémon. To the sound of flapping, I looked up and saw a flock of bird Pokémon covered in fine white feathers with long thin wings that had blue stripes near the ends and long thin yellow beaks with black tips. Awesome! I knew May was right, but wow! The things you notice when you actually observe your surroundings! :D

As I continued on, I heard a splash followed by the sound of rustling grass. I looked around and saw a pond to my right. Obviously that’s where the Pokémon is! I slowly crept towards the water’s edge keeping a close eye out for any Wild Pokémon. All I saw though was a lily pad lying on the ground.

“Huh. That’s strange. I could have sworn…” I mused looking around. The pond didn’t look like it had a strong current so the lily pad just couldn’t have washed up on its own. I looked down to see the lily pad slowly crawling away from me. =0

“You aren’t a plant are you?” I realized getting Alpha’s Pokéball ready. “Alpha! Attack with Tackle!” I called sending him out. As soon as the Mudfish Pokémon emerged from his Pokéball he slammed his body into the lily pad revealing a blue underbelly consisting of a yellow lipped mouth and six stubby legs. I should have known better. Pokémon come in all shapes and sizes. Back in Johto I heard stories about random trees that seemingly sprang up out of nowhere but were actually the Pokémon Sudowoodo.

“Let’s see what you are.” I said taking out my Pokédex. It identified the Pokémon as Lotad, the Water Weed Pokémon. A female and a Water/Grass-type. Not a good match-up for Alpha. The Lotad quickly proved her Grass-type by unleashing a flurry of leaves at Alpha from under her lily pad doing heavy damage.

“Alpha, come back! You’re up Beldum!” I called switching my Pokémon with their respective Pokéballs in my left and right hands. Beldum appeared just in time to take another Razor Leaf from Lotad which did significantly less damage. “Let’s try Hold Back!” I suggested. Beldum slammed into the Water Weed Pokémon but with enough restraint so as to not knock her out. I think she looks weakened enough. I took out an empty Pokéball and threw it at Lotad. After three shakes I had caught yet another Pokémon! ^_^

I now had a choice to make. Alpha and Lotad were both pretty weakened and I was still close enough to Oldale Town that I could turn around and get them healed at the Pokémon Center. On the contrary, I still had my 10-pack of Potions that I could use to heal them. But did I want to save those for when I was too far from a Pokémon Center? :/

I headed back to Oldale, got my Pokémon healed, and returned to my journey up Route 102. Better be safe than sorry. You never know when you might be in a dire emergency where if you had just one more Potion…

“Hey you there!” called a kid with a bandage on his nose wearing a yellow T-shirt, black shorts, and a blue hat. “I am Calvin! If you have Pokémon that makes you a Trainer! You can’t say no to my challenge!” *squee* My second Trainer Battle! :D

“You’re on! I’m Sapphire and this is Lotad!” I called sending out my newest Pokémon.

“Go Zigzagoon!” Calvin threw a Pokéball summoning a raccoon-like Pokémon with shaggy fur that alternated dark and light brown continuing into its bushy tail. Over its eyes was black fur giving the appearance of a mask. “Use Tackle!” Zigzagoon lived up to its name by running towards Lotad in a zigzag before ramming into her.

“Use Razor Leaf!” I commanded. Lotad let loose a flurry of leaves from under her lily pad at her opponent. The Tiny Raccoon Pokémon winced as each leaf sliced into it.

“Don’t let him do that to ya! Lower their Attack with Growl!” commanded the Youngster. Zigzagoon gave a cute Growl that seemed to startle Lotad.

“Do your best Lotad! Use another Razor Leaf!” I encouraged. Lotad did as told and landed her attack.

“Use another Tackle!” called Calvin. Zigzagoon once again ran in a zigzag and Tackled Lotad leaving her looking worn out.

“One more Razor Leaf should do the trick!” I called. After being assaulted by another flurry of leaves, Zigzagoon gave a weak cry as it fell to the ground.

“Arrg! I lost! I should train more!” yelled Calvin in frustration. “You said your name was Sapphire, right? When I get stronger I want you to come find me so we can have a rematch!” he demanded.

“Sure thing Calvin! I look forward to fighting you again.” I accepted.

Before moving on, I used a Potion on Lotad this time. I’ll never move forward if I keep running back ever time my Pokémon get worn out. As I continued to trudge along, I continued to battle Wild Pokémon as well as a few other Trainers I ran into. I even caught a rare Pokémon called Surskit that knew the rare move Mud Shot and through battles with other Lotad I learned that Razor Leaf was yet another rare move like Poochyena’s Fire Fang! Today has just been a really luck day for me! :’D

I also came across a few fruit bearing trees and picked a few Berries from them. Dad had told me before that nearly all of the modern medicine we have for taking care of our Pokémon was made synthetically using enzymes and nutrients found in Berries. The ones I picked were Oran Berries which restore health when eaten and Pecha Berries which help cure poison by neutralizing the toxins. The best part is, since Berries are natural, Pokémon can eat them in battle to heal themselves rather than rely on their Trainers to heal them with medicine.

“Heeeeeey!” I heard a voice call from behind me. I turned around to see May running up the road after me.

“May? How did you get back there when you left ahead of me?” I asked her.

“Oh you know. Just using my DexNav’s Detector Mode to look for a bunch of Pokémon and practicing my sneaking skills. You can call beating me in battle and sneaking up on that Poochyena beginner’s luck, but I still won’t let you get better than me!” she said taking her battle stance.

“Is that a challenge?” I asked reaching for Alpha’s Pokéball.

“Teehee. No. Just a promise.” she giggled. “So have you been practicing too?”

“A little bit.” I admit rubbing the back of my head. “Obviously not as much as you. But I don’t plan on losing to you either. I may have just become a Trainer, but I’ve still got my pride as a Gym Leader’s son!” That sounded cooler in my head. >>

“That’s right! Your dad is the Gym Leader of Petalburg City isn’t he?” asked May.

“That’s right. Do you know how much further it is? I’d like to visit his Gym before it closes.” I inquired.

“We’re not too far. It should only be about a mile up the road.” she informed. She then giggled. “Maybe when my Pokémon get a bit stronger I’ll challenge him to a Gym Battle.”

As we continued on our journey, a trio of Butterfly Pokémon fluttered out of a nearby tree and flew off to the horizon. The Pokémon had a small grey body, a long curled tube-like mouth, and large black wings decorated in a mostly yellow pattern, but there were also blue and red spots on them as well. I saw May take out her DexNav so I followed her lead and did the same.

“Wow! Check ‘em out Sapphire! Those were Beautifly! You got them on your DexNav, right?” she said in awe.

“Got ‘em!” I verified looking down at my DexNav. May nodded happily.

“Make sure you do that with all the Pokémon you see outside of battle so you can add them to your Pokédex. I wonder if those Beautifly were laying their eggs in the trees just now. They’re very rare in the wild ya know and are almost never seen this far away from Petalburg Woods. But in the spring they mate and travel outside the forest to lay their eggs. Then the Wurmple hatch from early summer all the way through early autumn. At least, that’s what my dad- I mean, Prof. Birch- wrote in a book.” she explained. You’re so smart May~ ♥

“Too bad they flew away. I’d love to have caught one.” I mused.

“All you have to do is catch a Wurmple. They can also evolve into Dustox though so you have a 50% shot. But it looks like you have close to a full party of Pokémon already. You sure have been busy today Sapphire.” May said noticing the five Pokéballs on my belt.

“Yeah. If I catch too many more I don’t know where I’ll carry them.” I said with a weak laugh.

“You can store Pokémon via PC Storage System ya know.” advised May.

“A PC?” I questioned.

“Mhm. They’re a technological marvel that can turn a Pokémon into data and store them in suspended animation in a datascape. Some people argue the ethics of keeping a living creature in suspended animation like that, but it doesn’t seem to have a negative impact on the Pokémon at all. It’s really no different than keeping them in Pokéballs and PCs are super handy for Trainers to keep lots of Pokémon and for Professors studying Pokémon. Storage PCs are mostly found in Pokémon Centers but a few other places have them too. The best part is the service is free!” she explained. Still so smart! ♥

“Then I guess I’ll have to set myself up on one when we get to Petalburg.” I decided.

From there it took us almost no time at all to get to Petalburg City. The first thing I noticed when I arrived in town was the scent of salt in the air. It reminded me of home… er, my old home. The city must be close to the ocean because it smells just like Olivine! Unlike Olivine though, Petalburg was much smaller in size.

My PokéNav said it was 5:30 so I still had an even half hour before the Gym closed. I decided I would hold off on visiting my dad for the time being and go to the Pokémon Center first to get my Pokémon healed and get set up on the PC. When I handed over my Pokémon, I asked the nurse about it so she had a tech guy come out simply to watch and advise me since setting up an account was really simple and easy.

All in all, it took no time at all to complete the process. All I had to do was fill out a form with my full name, hometown, and date of birth, create a username and password, and finally agree to the terms of service. The terms of service weren’t even that bad. Don’t hack the Storage System. The Pokémon Storage System can hold only 930 Pokémon. If you wish to store more, upgrade to Pokémon Bank which can hold at max 3000 Pokémon for an annual fee. 3000!! That’s ridiculous! I doubt I’ll even use up the free 930 spaces.

“Well there ya go son. Yer all set up.” the tech guy said once I was logged on.

“Thank you!” I said gratefully. I decided that for the time being I would store Poochyena and Surskit and keep Alpha, Beldum, and Lotad on my party.

“So that fancy red Pokéball you have there, Sapphire. Where did you get it anyway?” May inquired looking at Beldum’s Pokéball.

“It’s the craziest story. I actually won this Beldum in a raffle in Oldale Town Pokémon Center right after you went on ahead.” I told her.

“Lucky! I should have entered that raffle too. Maybe I could have won.” She then flashed a coy smile. “Just kidding! I’m actually happy you got such a rare Pokémon. I’ve never seen a Beldum before.” she admit.

“I’ll let you check it out when I get back from seeing my dad.” I promised giving her a thumbs up. That was cool! 8)

When I walked outside there was a woman about my mom’s age looking around for someone.

“Wally! Wally!” she shouted. “Where is that boy? We have to be heading for Verdanturf soon!” she said to herself. It wasn’t of any concern to me so I continued on my way. I used the map and GPS on my AreaNav to locate the Gym. From the outside the Gym was a long single story building with a yellow roof and glass doors. Dad was standing outside with a young boy talking to him. As I got closer I could hear the conversation better.

“Not bad. That was a great battle. You almost had me there.” Dad consoled. The Trainer must have just lost to him.

“Thank you sir.” replied the boy in a low voice. He must have been upset by the loss but was feeling better by the encouragement.

“You can do a lot better, I know you can. Come back and challenge me again anytime. I’ll be looking forward to seeing you and your Pokémon when you’re a bit stronger. I’m sure you’ll have no trouble then.” encouraged my father.

“I-I will. Thank you sir! I’ll be sure to give my Pokémon extra special training for next time! Then I’ll challenge this Gym again!” declared the boy before running passed me.

“I’m glad I didn’t come any earlier. I wouldn’t have wanted to interrupt your battle.” I said half-jokingly as I approached my dad.

“Hm? Sapphire? What are you doing here and how did you get here by yourself?” he inquired.

“Isn’t it obvious Dad?” I teased. I grabbed Alpha’s Pokéball from my belt and held it up. “I’m not by myself. I’m a Pokémon Trainer now just like you!”

“Haha! Well then let’s step into the Gym. It looks like it’s time for me to give you the talk.” he told me.

“Um… Dad. We… already had that talk.” I said uncomfortably. <<

“No, no. Not the birds and the Beedrills. The one about being a Trainer.” he clarified. Oh good. Dad walked to the Gym and held the door open for me. I walked in with Dad behind me. The inside looked like a dojo with smooth hardwood floors that were polished to the point I could see my reflection. By the entrance were two podiums and hanging up on the back wall was a large scroll with two doors leading deeper into the Gym under it.

“So Sapphire, did you and Mom finish moving in?” he asked.

“Yup. When I left home everything was perfectly organized.” I replied.

“Good, good. So tell me how you got that Pokémon of yours.” he requested. I sent Alpha out of his Pokéball, introduced him to my dad, and then went on to explain everything that happened this morning.

“That Birch. I should have known he was involved in this. I’m so glad you finally got a start on your dream to become a Pokémon Trainer like me. I’ll have to thank him for giving you a Pokémon of your own. Who knows how long you would have waited for me to get some time off.” he said with a laugh.

“Um… E-excuse me…” I turned around to see a young pale boy with messy green hair yet dressed really nicely walking in the Gym. He had a brown bag hanging across his left shoulder down to his waist.

“I’m sorry, the Gym is about to close soon. If you’re here for a challenge, you’ll have to wait until tomorrow.” Dad said to the boy.

“Uh… N-no, that’s not when I’m here.” the boy said nervously. “M-my name is Wally, I-I’d like to get a Pokémon please.” Wally? Could he be the boy that woman was looking for earlier?

“You want a Pokémon?” repeated Dad trying to press the kid for more details.

“Y-yes… I’m supposed to go stay with my relatives in Verdanturf Town for a while. But I thought I might be lonely by myself, so I wanted to bring a Pokémon with me. But I’ve never caught a Pokémon by myself… I’m not sure if I can.” he said dejectedly. Dad closed his eyes and nodded quietly.

“Mhm. You got that Sapphire? One of the duties of a Trainer is helping others when needed. I want you to go out and help Wally catch a Pokémon of his own.” Dad requested.

“You got it!” I agreed.

“R-really? You mean it?” Wally asked excitedly.

“Of course. I just got my first Pokémon today too so I know how exciting it is.” I told him.

“Wally. I’ll lend you my Zigzagoon to help you catch your own.” Dad said getting out a Pokéball and giving it to Wally.

“Y-your Pokémon sir?” Wally questioned in disbelief.

“Mhm. The Pokémon around these parts are pretty easy to catch so I’ll only give you one empty Pokéball. As long as you weaken the Wild Pokémon first you should have no trouble catching it. Do your best!” encouraged Dad.

“S-so you’re really going to help me… um… Sapphire?” Wally asked.

“I already told you I would.” I verified. “Alright! Let’s go to Route 102! I saw a lot of Pokémon there.” I returned Alpha to his Pokéball and led Wally out of the Gym.

As we headed out of the city, I kept an eye out for that woman just in case she tried to keep us from our mission. While we walked, Wally started coughing.

“Hey, are you ok?” I asked him.

“I’m fine. I’ve got asthma which is why I’m moving to Verdanturf. The air there is really clean and my parents are hoping it will help my health improve.” Wally explained.

“Well I hope you get healthier out there. How old are you anyway?” I inquired.

“I’m 10.” he replied.

“That’s cool. I didn’t get my first Pokémon until today and I’m 12 so you’re getting one a lot earlier than I did.” I said hoping it would cheer him up.

“S-so now that you’re a Trainer you were challenging Mr. Norman when I walked in.” guessed Wally. I only chuckled.

“No, I’m not quite ready to face him in battle yet. You see, Norman is my dad so I was showing him my new Pokémon.” I clarified.

“You’re a Gym Leader’s son? Y-you must be r-really strong.” he stuttered in surprise.

“I’m not that strong yet.” I pointed out. But I have done pretty well for myself my first day. :)

“S-so Sapphire. To find Wild Pokémon I just walk in the tall grass right?” Wally asked when we got to Route 102.

“That’s right.” I answered. The two of us wandered around looking but so far no luck. Not even my DexNav was picking up on anything.

Wh-whoa!” I heard Wally call out. I turned around to see a small white Pokémon with a green dome shaped head and two red horns in the front and back of its head standing in front of Wally. I didn’t see that my first time up this Route! I took out my Pokédex to learn that this was Ralts, the Feeling Pokémon. The Pokédex also says he’s a male.

“You ready for this Wally?” I asked him.

“Y-yeah. P-please stay there and watch me. I want to try this on my own first.” he requested.

“You got it!” I granted. Wally sent out Dad’s Zigzagoon to initiate the battle.

“I’m su-supposed to weaken the Wild Pokémon first before throwing the Pokéball. I read that in a book and Mr. Norman said the same thing. S-so Zigzagoon! U-use Tackle!” he stammered. The Tiny Raccoon Pokémon followed Wally’s order flawlessly and ran at Ralts in a zigzag before slamming into him. Ralts put his thin arms to his head. His horn started to glow pink as he sent waves of Psychic energy at Zigzagoon causing him to yelp. Wally seemed unsure and nervous about what to do next.

“You’ve got this! Give him another Tackle!” I instructed.

“R-right! T-tackle Zigzagoon!” he called. Zigzagoon went for another Tackle leaving Ralts visibly weakened. The Feeling Pokémon retaliated by Growling at Zigzagoon to weaken the next attack but the way this match-up had gone I doubt it would be necessary.

“So now I throw the Pokéball.” Wally said looking at the empty ball. He then got a look of determination I hadn’t seen from him so far. Wally threw the Pokéball at Ralts. I watched as the Pokémon was tuned into a red light and pulled into the sphere. One shake. Two shakes. Three shakes. Click!

“I… I did it! M-my… My own Pokémon!” he stuttered completely overtaken with joy. I even saw tears welling up in his eyes. :’) “Th-thank you Sapphire. I will never forget this kindness.”

“No. It was my honor. You take good care of your Ralts now ok?” I said humbly.

“Mm. It’s a promise!” he agreed with a nod. “My very own Ralts. I will always treasure him as my best friend.” he said gently to the Pokéball. With that, the two of us returned back to the Gym.

“So how did it go? Everything went well I hope.” Dad asked when we walked back in.

“Yes. Th-thank you so much Mr. Norman. Thank you too Sapphire. If it weren’t for the two of you, I would have never caught my Ralts.” Wally said looking like he wanted to cry tears of joy. He then looked like he remembered something. “Oh right! Here’s your Zigzagoon back sir.” he said giving Dad back his Pokémon. “And Sapphire?” he said turning to me.

“What is it?” I asked.

“I feel like nothing I do will ever repay your kindness, but I have a gift I’d like to give you too. I noticed earlier you were using a PokéNav Plus. I have an app for it called a PlayNav i-if you’ll accept it.”

“I’d love to.” I said getting out my PokéNav and handing it to Wally. He reached into his bag and pulled out the same type of SD card May used before and downloaded the app to my PokéNav. “So what does the PlayNav do?” I inquired.

“PlayNav has three functions. The first lets you look for nearby Trainers that also have the app so you can find each other to battle or trade or interact in other ways. The second lets you play games with your Pokémon and buy a type of treat called PokéPuff all the way from Kalos! And the third is a virtual training simulation that helps your Pokémon get stronger. I’ve wanted to have my own Pokémon for so long… and do all those kinda things together… So I’ve had all these kinds of apps installed on my PokéNav Plus for ages! Embarrassing, huh? I’m going to try my best together with Ralts. Promise you’ll do your best too Sapphire.”

“Promise! And thank you for the PlayNav. I really appreciate it.” I said gratefully.

“Well I should get going. My mom is probably worried sick looking for me. I hope you’ll come to visit me in Verdanturf Sapphire.” requested Wally.

“You got it!” I agreed.

“I hope to see you again too Mr. Norman.” Wally said before leaving.

“So long Wally.” Dad called waving him out. “Mhm. That Wally will be worth keeping an eye on. I know a Trainer with potential when I see one. Both you and he have a lot of it.” Dad said cryptically.

“Right, so the talk.” I reminded.

“Yes! Take a seat Sapphire.” he offered holding out his hand. I did as told and sat down on the floor with Dad sitting across from me. He took a deep breath and gave me a serious look.

“I always knew this day would come. Tell me Sapphire, do you realize just how difficult and challenging the road ahead of you is?”

“I’m aware. I’ve watched you train every day for as long as I can remember.” I said.

“Then you should understand. I have dedicated my life to Pokémon so I know just how harsh that life can be. Being a Pokémon Trainer tests your limits every day. Your body and mind will be pushed to the breaking point at times. Your heart will grow heavy with emotions you never knew you could feel. But it won’t just be you who struggles. As a Pokémon Trainer you have to be conscientious of your Pokémon as well. Are they stressed out? Tired? Angry or sad? You are their leader. The onus of their wellbeing falls squarely on your shoulders.”

“It can’t possibly be as bad as you make it sound. Why would anyone be a Trainer if I was that hard?” I pointed out.

“Because the struggle is its own reward. If things get too hard, keep fighting. Backing down is an insult to your Pokémon. By fighting alongside your Pokémon day in day out, you begin to form an understanding with each other and an unbreakable connection. That connection extends to the other Trainers you battle against because they too know that internal battle. Every victory, every accomplishment, is because your guidance and resolve help bring out your Pokémon’s full strength and potential. Every loss and failure isn’t a sign of weakness, merely a reminder that you have to work harder. Pokémon Trainers all have different objectives. Some do it for sport. Some do it for the adventure. Some do it for research. Some do it for fun. There are just as many reasons to be a Trainer as there are Trainers and no reason is better than any other. All roads have their own unique trials as well. Remember that Sapphire.”

“Got it.” I answered with a nod. Honestly, it was a lot to take in. I felt my head spinning. @_@ “So Dad. I know I just became a Trainer and all, but I’m really eager to test myself against you just to see where I stand. Do you think we can have a mock Gym Battle?” I requested. Dad only laughed at the suggestion.

“Believe me Sapphire, the moment you walked up to me and told me you were a Trainer I felt a swell of anticipation at the thought of doing battle with you. Unfortunately son, you just aren’t ready for me yet. There is still so much yet for you to learn on your own before you reach my level.” he denied. I felt pretty disappointed at the rejection, but I knew it was coming. I also knew there would be no way for me to win. I just couldn’t help myself but to ask.

“I don’t want that to be your answer every time I ask you so give me an obtainable goal.” I requested. Dad crossed his arms and tilted his head in thought.

“Hmmm… Let’s say… four? Yeah, go collect four badges. Do that and I’ll be more than happy to take you on!” he agreed. “The closest Gym to here is the one in Rustboro City. Ah but don’t get complacent now. You managed to walk here from Littleroot Town in a matter of hours. Travelling through the rest of Hoenn won’t be so easy. The trip from here to Rustboro will be about two or three days. Maybe longer if you get lost in Petalburg Woods or if you simply take your time. Even then it won’t be too difficult of a journey. You are lucky to be starting in the southwestern part of the Hoenn region which is mostly flat, low-lying grassland and forests. To the north is rugged and mountainous terrain. To the east is thick rainforest and jungle. Getting from town to town will take days or weeks depending on your pace and how strong your Pokémon are. Then even further east and to the south is vast open ocean with only a few islands to rest on. You will want to make sure you are well prepared and have ample supplies before travelling by sea unless you go by ship.”

“Got it!” I said jumping up. “So is there anything else you want to tell me?” I asked.

“Yes. There is one last thing.” Dad’s face shifted from serious and stern to warm and proud. “Be safe Sapphire. Don’t do anything too reckless out there. So long as you believe in your Pokémon and train them properly, they will be your invaluable allies. Do your best and whatever happens, know I’m proud of you.”

“Gee thanks.” I said turning away and pulling my hat down. Parents can be so embarrassing. >>

“Well, it’s already past closing time. I should be heading back home now. Don’t want to keep your mother waiting too long.” he said more lightheartedly. “Are you coming back?”

“Not this time. I’m determined to begin my journey today so I’ll be staying in Petalburg for the night. Since Rustboro is further away, I want to get a fresh start tomorrow morning.” I decided.

“Very well Sapphire. I’ll see you later then. Make sure to come home sometime though. You don’t want Mom getting worried.” he advised.

“Of course. See ya Dad.” I said.

The two of us left the Gym together. Dad locked the doors and then headed behind the Gym to go to his car. It would have been crazy if he had to walk three hours to work and then three hours home every day. While he did that, I went to the Pokémon Center. Even though my Pokémon were at full health, I was feeling pretty tired. I hadn’t noticed it before, but my legs were pretty sore from all the miles I walked today. My head was also feeling pretty fatigued from all the excitement. Meeting a cute girl ♥, getting my first Pokémon, catching so many more, saying goodbye to my parents, meeting a really cool kid, it was a lot to take in. @_@ But that just made me even more excited for the road ahead of me! I can’t wait to see what this journey has in store for me! >:D
Ry_Burst, legoboy_20 and Aura like this.
  1. Psycho Monkey
    Psycho Monkey
    That's exactly what I was going for so I'm glad to hear I'm pulling it off so well so far! It's still the end of Sapphire's first day so there will be plenty of time for bonding with his Pokemon in the future, especially now that he has Pokemon-Amie. ;)
    Aug 14, 2015
  2. Aura
    Your writing here really feels like a young boy writing in a travel diary or something like that. I really like that, because I guess it conveys his feelings and personality in a different way to what I'm used to seeing. Plus it really well gets across the feelings of excitement a child would feel going through all of this. I'm kinda hoping as time goes on we get to see Sapphire have more meaningful interactions which his Pokemon, because at the moment they feel like they're just sort of... there, and not really involved outside of battle. Its sort of justified given that that's how it does work in the game really, but either way, this is still quite enjoyable to read :)
    Aug 13, 2015
    Psycho Monkey likes this.