A New Life Through The Eyes Of Kanto: An Autobiography

Bulba-Baby, Ivy Maybe

“All of your Pokemon are in perfect health,” Nurse Joy said brightly. “You have no need to worry. Your Hoothoot will need a couple of weeks to recover from his sprained wing, but he was handled very well by whoever last took care of him and wrapped his wing.”

I breathed a sigh of relief.

“Your Charmeleon is also now doing just fine, and so is Dugtrio,” Nurse Joy continued on.

“Thank you very much, Nurse Joy.” I gave a big grin. A strange silence met me and the nurse as I stood there, smiling back at her. I felt like I was dying to say something to her.

She looked exactly like the other Nurse Joys, and yet there was something else about her. The glint in her eyes? The natural glow from her face? I felt like I could just about explode if I didn’t open my mouth and tell her exactly how beautiful she was and how seeing her made my heart create wider space in my chest to try and contain my love for her.

“Can we go, now?” June interrupted my thoughts. “I have my Pokemon. What are we waiting for? What are you smiling at?”

I turned to see June look from me, to Nurse Joy, and back to me again. An annoyed look came over her face. “Don’t you have a Badge to battle for or something?” she snapped at me. She grabbed me roughly high up by the arm and yanked me out of the Pokemon Center.

“Hey!” I stumbled after her. “What’s the deal?”

“You have a Badge to win, right?” she said with a clear temper.

I was helpless as June held onto me in an iron locked grip and yanked me around the city.

“June, come on!” I was trying to fight my way out of her painful grasp, but she held onto me too tightly. I was practically a rag doll being dragged about by its angry child owner.

I grabbed June’s arm with my other hand and yanked her back hard.

She gasped and turned to glare at me.

“What is your problem?” I demanded.

“Nothing!” she shouted. “I thought you were going for a Badge!”

“Of course I am! But what’s the rush? You pulled me out of that Pokemon Center like my life was in danger.”

She didn’t say anything. After a moment, a calm came over her face. She inhaled deeply and a smile crawled over her lips as she exhaled happily. “Do you smell that, Gary?”

I inhaled the sweet scent of something very strong. I was sure it was perfume. “Yeah.”

Around the two of us were bakeries, electronics stores, enormous apartment buildings, office buildings, clothing stores, and so much more. The busy streets filled with busy people hustling to their desired locations were surprisingly clean. There were people in suits, casual clothes, excessively fashionable clothing, and even a few people with completely abstract fashions on, in my opinion.

I noticed a video game store across the street and started walked towards it instinctually. Displayed at the window were all the latest games and gaming systems. I can’t afford these things, I thought to myself sadly, shaking my head. And I’m a Pokemon Trainer. I have no time to play these cool games. There aren’t even any electric outlets to charge these devices outdoors during my journey. Sighing, I remembered so many things about my old life. Being at home with my family. Having at least three full meals a day. Playing my favorite games on my computer, or on the TV, or my handheld games. Watching TV. Fighting with my sister over virtually anything and everything. Traveling with my family to see the city. Seeing my other family members. Staying up late when my parents put me to bed. Sneaking snacks out of the kitchen late at night. Hanging out with my friends. Birthdays. Holidays. Now, my life was so different. Everything I once knew had changed.

“Gary, you can’t buy these things,” I heard June say from behind me. “You’re a Pokemon Trainer. You can’t exactly afford the luxury of video games.”“I know, June,” I grumbled, keeping my eyes on the display.

“Then stop wasting time here and let’s go find where that wonderful scent is coming from! Let’s ask some of the people.” She lightly grabbed my wrist and I pulled it back.

I turned to her with a scowl. “I’m a Pokemon Trainer, right?” I asked. “I have responsibilities to take care of. And right now, I want my Rainbow Badge.”

June looked disappointed. “That doesn’t mean you can’t have a bit of fun along the way, Gary! We can explore a bit, can’t we?”

“How about you go explore your little nonsense,” I suggested. “I want my Badge. Now.” I walked away from her and began trying to locate where the Celadon City Gym was located at, having no idea where I was going. It was less than a minute before I looked behind me.

June hadn’t moved from where I had left her. She watching me, a visibly sad look on her face.

“Are you coming?” I asked with a sigh.

She let out a sigh in return and walked over to me slowly. “Can we explore after you get your Badge?” she begged.

“Listen,” I started. “Go explore all you want now, because once I get my Badge, I’m out of here.”

She frowned at me and folded her arms, but said, “Fine.”

I walked and to my surprise, June followed. “What are you following me for? Don’t you want to see what’s in Celadon?”

“I’m here to learn about Pokemon and how you interact with them, right?” she said grudgingly.

“I guess...” I mumbled.

As we walked through the city, I began to realize that this place was a maze! I had seen the Celadon City Gym just last night, but this morning, I couldn’t locate it to save my life!

“Look Gary, the Celadon Condominiums!”

I turned to see one of the hugest buildings I’d ever seen! It extended quite a wide distance and was very tall.

“This is where many ideas for the Pokedex are inputted and new designs are created with the latest Pokemon information!” June said excitedly. “Prof. Oak, as well as other famous professors from all over the Pokemon world come by here at times to review the information and test the products before they are given to brand new Pokemon Trainers!”

“Prof. Oak, huh?” I said nonchalantly, though what she said had genuinely interested me. “That’s cool. He’s a very knowledgeable and dependable guy.”

“I wish I could meet him one day!” June gushed.

“Maybe I’ll introduce you one day.” I was starting to lose interest and looked around again.

“Introduce me?” June grabbed my shoulders and turned me around strongly, staring excitedly into my eyes. “You mean, you know him?”

I stared back in surprise, a little scared by the glint in her eyes. “Yeah… He gave me my Pokedex and lives in my hometown, Pallet Town.”

“Oh, my gosh!” she screamed. “How did I not know this?” She gasped. “You said you were from Pallet Town during our Gym battle!! How could I be so stupid?!”

“It’s no big deal, June.” I was getting a little uncomfortable and awkward from how upset she was acting in such a big city with so many people around. I hate attention and I hoped nobody was looking at us.

“Gary, we have to go back to Pallet Town!”

I stared at her sternly. “After I get at least eight Badges. Then, sure.”

June looked away from me. “Yeah, yeah… Sure... Eight Badges. Fine. Whatever.”

I shook my head and walked from her.

“Hey! Gary! Wait! Look!” June called. “The Celadon Department Store!”

Not far from the Celadon Condominium was a building that wasn’t as big, but was still of an impressive stature.

“I have to shop here!” June insisted.

“Have fun,” I said, turning to go.

“Garyyyy!” June pleaded. “They have Pokemon needs here too! Vitamins, and health care items like Antidotes, and even specialized Trainers who know how to teach your Pokemon cool new moves they may not know otherwise!”

That last sentence did grab my attention, but after I thought about it, I shook my head. “I don’t have the money for all that stuff. My Pokemon are just fine as they are, for now. I can teach my Pokemon cool moves on my own. Like I said, June, if you want to hang around, go ahead. But if you want to keep traveling with me, you better stick with me or finish exploring by the time I get my Rainbow Badge, because I am out of here soon after.”

She sucked her teeth but conceded when she nodded her head, looking at the ground. “Fine. I guess I can learn a lot from this Gym battle of yours.”

Still lost, I maneuvered through the busy streets of Celadon.

At some point only several minutes later, June and I stood still in a clearing.

A huge, circular fountain stood feet away, water flowing up from the center of it from a concrete pole and spilled down into the stone bottom.

We walked up to the fountain and stared at it together.

“This is so pretty, isn’t it Gary?” June said dreamily.

Maybe for a minute, I thought, losing interest. I turned from it, ready to keep moving, but I saw her and froze. My mouth dropped. Without a word, I ran to her.

“Gary?” June asked with a startled voice. “Where are you running to?”

I kept running the short distance to her and then stopped.

She was sitting on a bench, head in her lap, crying, hands covering her face. But I recognized her clothes. Her tight jeans. The baggy, stylishly ragged T-shirt. The short black hair in a loose, carefree style about her head.

“Aly!” I shouted.

The girl looked up to me, eyes full of tears, and she gasped. “Gary?? No way! Gary????” She stood up. “What happened to your face? Are you okay?”

“Yeah,” I replied, now embarrassed, and I lowered my face down.

“You look like crap! What happened to you?”

“I’m fine, Aly,” I growled. “It’s a bit more dangerous being a Pokemon Trainer than I thought, is all. I see you’re looking just fine, but what’s with the tears?”

Her eyes overflowed immediately and she lowered her head into her hands, falling to her knees.

“Aly!” I knelt down next to her and placed my hand on my friend’s shoulder. “What’s wrong?”

Someone stepped up beside me, and I looked up to see June. She looked confused and sad at the same time.

I shrugged and turned back to Aly. “Aly, I’d like you to meet my new friend.”

Aly sniffled and looked up, noticing June.

“Aly, this is June. June, Aly,” I introduced them.

June smiled. “Hi!” She knelt down, extending a hand to Aly.

Aly wiped quickly at her eyes and managed a smile as she took June’s hand. “Hello.”

“Hon, come with me.” June stood up and helped Aly.

Aly looked to me uncertainly.

I got up and nodded, though I didn’t know what June was planning.

June took Aly to the bench she had been sitting on and they both sat down next to each other.

I sat next to Aly.

“My name is June. I’m the previous Gym Leader of Gringey City. I specialize in raising Electric type Pokemon. I recently left my Gym Leader position to find out how to become a better Pokemon Trainer and raise my Pokemon properly. That’s why I’m with Gary, who is an expert on raising Pokemon!”

Aly whipped to me and gave me the craziest look I’d ever been given.

I looked at June like she was out of her mind.

June cleared her throat. “I just mean, I’ve seen how he handles his Pokemon, and the connection and bond I’ve seen him have with them is nothing short of incredible. I want to learn how to have that kind of bond with some of my own Pokemon. So Gary allowed me to travel with him for a while so I could learn more.”

I didn’t like how June was explaining this at all.

Aly looked at me, one eyebrow raised up. She looked back to June. “So, Gary has you convinced he’s a big shot, huh? Huh? Huh? Well, let me tell you something, missy. He isn’t all that great. When he first got his Charmander, it totally disobeyed him and attacked him. And the last time I spoke to my mom, she told me that his Charmander went so berserk, it nearly killed him!” Aly turned to me. “So what about that Mr. Big Shot Trainer? Huh? Huh? Huh?”

“Um…” I uttered uncomfortably. “My Charmeleon and I get along great now. It was just a big misunderstanding.”“Charmeleon??” Aly’s face held complete shock. “It… evolved?”

“Yeah, and we’re like the best of friends!”

Her shocked face turned to a more bitter, angry look. “So, you think you’re Mr. Big Boss now? Huh? Huh? Raising evolved Pokemon and picking up pretty girls along the way by convincing them you’re hot stuff? Huh? Huh? Huh? Huh???”I edged away from Aly a little bit. “That’s not what happened…” I managed.

“Wait!! That’s not exactly what I said…” June said hesitantly. “But thanks for the compliment!” She began to blush, which frustrated me a bit.

“ANYWAY!” I burst out. “Why are you in Celadon City, crying??”

Aly suddenly looked sad again and she sighed. “I came to Celadon City to get my Rainbow Badge. Everything was okay with my baby before, but once I battled the Gym Leader for the Badge…”

“Your baby?” June asked.

I suddenly remembered Aly referring to her Bulbasaur as her baby when she first got it. “Bulba-baby,” if I recalled correctly. “Your Bulbasaur?”

Aly lowered her head and just shook it. She unclipped a Poke Ball from her belt and held it out.

It opened and out from the white light that emitted from within and landed on the ground at her feet stood a Pokemon. The light faded, and what was revealed was an Ivysaur!

I was moved to my feet. “Oh, wow! Congratulations! Bulbasaur evolved!”

Ivysaur. The Seed Pokemon and the evolved form of Bulbasaur. Ivysaur have the ability to manipulate nature. It can survive days without eating by absorbing the sun’s energy through the flower on its back.

“Awesome!” I took my Poke Ball from my belt and sent out my Charmeleon.

“Charmeleon!” He looked at Ivysaur and walked over, extending his claw in friendship, smiling.

Ivysaur turned its head.

A vine came from the side of its bulb and whipped Charmeleon’s claw!

Charmeleon cried out, taking a step back, a stunned look on his face. “Char! Char! Char!” he tried talking to Ivysaur.

The plant Pokemon didn’t look back at Charmeleon, but it said something.

Charmeleon growled at Ivysaur and walked away, stopping by me, still growling, displeased with Ivysaur’s behavior.

“Huh?” I said, looking at Charmeleon.

“You see?” Aly pointed.

“Your Ivysaur.” June was staring intently at Ivysaur. “She doesn’t obey you. And hasn’t since she evolved. This was your first Pokemon and you’re crushed that the bond you both once shared is now gone. Is that right?”

Aly looked at June in surprise. “Wh-what?? How did you know?”

“It’s so obvious, to me.” June never took her eyes off of Ivysaur, who was now staring back at June.

“Did you say Ivysaur was a she?” Aly asked.

“Yes,” June nodded. “That too is clear to me.”

Aly stared in shock at June, and then she turned to me. “How?” Aly mouthed.

I raised a finger to my lips.

“But, what about my Persian?” Aly held out a second Poke Ball which sent out a feline. It looked gorgeous and also, stuck up.

Persian. The Classy Cat Pokemon and the evolved form of Meowth. This Pokemon is extremely popular both in higher class societies as well as with people living in poorer environments. However, this Pokemon can be extremely difficult to raise and may attack anyone for no known given reason, including its owner.

“Whoa.” My eyes widened warily.

“You see?” Aly said loudly. “It’s supposed to be such a difficult Pokemon to raise, but I’ve never had a problem with it and we battle together perfectly. I raised it since it was a Meowth and since the beginning, we’ve been such good friends!” Aly knelt down next to Persian and squeezed it from behind in a tight hug. “Plus, it’s a cat!” Aly squealed. “I LOVE cats!!”

Persian choked out a bit, but showed no signs of wanting to attack.

That was a certain fact about Aly. Nobody loved cats more than her. Nobody on Earth. Whether it was cat Pokemon or cats in general, Aly was game to talk about cats at any given, random, and even inopportune moment. I wasn’t all that surprised she had a cat Pokemon. She probably had more.

“She’s very beautiful,” June commented with a smile. She walked over to Persian and petted her head gently.

Persian purred loudly and nuzzled against June’s legs.

“She?” Aly asked. “Persian, is she correct? Are you a girl?”Persian turned to Aly and made a noise I could only describe at a sassy kind of a meow.

Aly gasped and looked at June. “How do you do that?”

June smiled. “I guess it’s a gift of some sort.”“You can read Pokemon and how they’re feeling!” Aly was amazed. “You can even tell their gender! What more do you need to know? Especially from Gary! You know much more about being close with your Pokemon than Gary does!”

“Thanks,” I muttered.

June laughed. “No no no no no.” She shook her head sharply. “Trust me, Aly, I really have quite a lot to learn.”“Hmm.” Aly looked at June suspiciously. “Well I think you and Gary have something more going on and that’s why you’re with each other. Travelling together to learn more from each other, right? Huh? Huh?”

No way!!” June was blushing again, raising her hands and shaking her head frantically.

“Then why’s that pretty little face of yours so red now, huh? Huh???” Aly continued.

“Ignore her,” I told June. “She’s mental.”

“Shut up, Gary!” Aly shot at me.

“No, you shut up!” I shot back immediately.

“No you shut up!” Aly said louder.

“No, YOU shut up!” I said louder.

“No, YOU SHUT UP!” Aly screamed.

NO-!

“IF YOU BOTH DON’T SHUT THE HELL UP!” June barked.

Me, Aly, Persian, Ivysaur, and Charmeleon all looked at June with wide eyes.

June smiled. “Thank you! So, Aly, can you tell me when this situation first occurred? Like, when did Ivysaur evolve?”Aly cleared her throat. “Well, after we had just barely defeated the Gym Leader of Vermillion City, Lt. Surge, we had traveled quite a bit, me and my baby.”

I turned to June and saw her eyes widen for a moment at the mention of Lt. Surge.

Aly gazed at her Ivysaur, who was busy sniffing the ground and scratching at it with her paw. My friend looked back to us. “Then we got into a battle with another Trainer. He wasn’t all that tough or anything. It was a fast win, but suddenly my Bulbasaur evolved! I was so happy. Everything seemed okay with us. Then, we got to Celadon City soon after and during our battle with the Gym Leader, Ivysaur completely disobeyed my orders! She was my last Pokemon left and we could’ve won! Or, we at least could have done better, if she had just listened to me. Instead, she attacked when she wanted and took hits that she should’ve dodged. I cried! Cried for her to listen. Tears! But she refused and got beaten up. After the match, I tried to talk with her after she got healed at the Pokemon Center, but she won’t listen to me and even tried to run away! She even Vine Whipped me at one point!” Aly covered her face and cried again, harder than before.

June stared at Ivysaur for a while, who was laying down calmly, basking in the sun. She then stood up and walked over to the Pokemon.

Ivysaur opened one of her eyes as June’s shadow blocked her sun. The Grass type started to growl.

“Ivysaur, relax, sweetie. I don’t mean you any harm or trouble,” June said softly, leaning over a bit. “My name is June. Please, I want you to talk to me.” She held out a hand to Ivysaur, who sniffed it. June then slowly touched Ivysaur’s head and stroked it gently.

Ivysaur stared at June, not moving.

“Ivysaur, tell me what’s wrong,” June encouraged her. “I want to understand.”

Ivysaur didn’t say a word. She just continued to stare at her.

There was silence for a while as me, Aly, Charmeleon and Persian watched June continue to stroke Ivysaur’s head gently, and Ivysaur just sat there.

Ivysaur suddenly growled. She stood up and two vines appeared from her bulb!

“Oh!” June stumbled backwards, fear on her face.

Ivysaur began chasing June around the clearing, whipping her repeatedly as June screamed, begging for her to stop.

I couldn’t believe my eyes.

“Ivysaur!” Aly tried returning Ivysaur to her Poke Ball, but the Pokemon kept narrowly avoiding the red beam trying to suck her back in. She pleaded with Ivysaur and continued the chase, Persian loyally following close to Aly, but Ivysaur ignored her completely.

Eventually, Ivysaur stopped running and June ran a distance before stopping and looking behind her, gasping for air.

Ivysaur laid back down on the ground and closed her eyes.

Aly stopped behind Ivysaur, exhausted. Tears filled her eyes once again.

“I guess I’m not meant to be a Pokemon Trainer,” Aly whimpered. “I guess I should go back home to Pallet Town.” She cried hysterically, tears littering the ground.

“You need to be strong,” June said seriously. She hobbled back over to the clearing, her legs and surely her butt, sore. “That Ivysaur is a fighter. She needs respect.”

“Respect?” Aly asked. “I love my baby! I respect her!”“No!” June said strongly. “No more baby talk. She’s not a baby! She needs your respect and acknowledgement of that!”Aly stared at June, her mouth hanging open, looking frozen.

“She’s like any human,” June explained. “It’s okay to baby a baby, but once a baby grows into an older child, or a teenager, and of course, later on, an adult, they don’t want to be called kids anymore. They demand respect, Aly. And that’s how your Ivysaur feels. She’s a fighter. You have won many battles with her, but those battles were ones you fought. Not Bulbasaur.”

“Ones… I fought?” Aly looked bewildered.

“Yes. You battled those fights. You didn’t let Bulbasaur battle how she wanted. It was all about you. You were never synced with her. Never were you at one with her.” June paused and lowered her eyes for a second, thinking, before turning her hard eyes back on Aly. “You... didn’t battle together. Odds are, your battle style isn’t the type Ivysaur likes. Now that she is an Ivysaur, she is more mature and is trying to communicate the way she likes to battle. You both have to get in sync or this partnership isn’t going to work out.”

Aly just stared at June.

Even I just stared at June, thoroughly impressed.

“You… are… amazing!” Aly praised. She ran up to June and hugged her tightly. Soon, she was crying all over June.

June hugged her and rubbed her back soothingly. “It’s okay, Aly.”

“I suck as a Pokemon Trainer!” Aly wailed.

June grabbed Aly by the shoulders and pushed her back. She then shook Aly hard, a stern look on her face. “Stop it!”

Aly looked terrified, now.

“Stop looking so weak in front of your Pokemon! Be strong! She wants you to be strong! You keep denying her when you say you’re weak! Stop it!” June shook Aly again even harder. Her eyes then widened and her face calmed down. She turned to me.

My eyes widened, now.

June turned back to Aly. “Battle Gary!”

“WHAT??” Aly and I shouted in unison.

“Charmeleon versus Ivysaur!” June declared.

Charmeleon cocked his head. “Char?” He looked to me.

Persian cocked her head at June in confusion.

Even Ivysaur had opened her eyes by now and was looking directly at June.

June was staring right back at Ivysaur.

“But, June!” Aly protested.

“No!” June insisted. “If you want to get closer to your Pokemon, you need to battle alongside her in all kinds of situations! That’s the only way you will get closer and sync with her.”“But I’m at too-” Aly began.

June walked away from Aly and stood in the middle of the clearing. “The Pokemon battle between Gary and Aly will now begin!” June proclaimed loudly for all to hear. “Everyone who intends to go through this clearing, I highly recommend you take another route or get out of the way!”

People who had been walking by during this entire altercation quickly ran past or stood still, watching the battle from a distant enough spot.

“This will be a one-on-one Pokemon battle! Charmeleon versus Ivysaur! No time limit. I, June, former Gym Leader of Gringey City, will be the referee. Trainers take your places!”

Me and Charmeleon exchanged glances and smiled. After a reassuring nod to each other, we walked over to one side of the clearing.

Aly stared at me and then Charmeleon before finally turning to her Ivysaur.

Ivysaur had stood up and was looking at Charmeleon.

Charmeleon was glaring back.

Aly sighed and walked over to the opposite end of the area, her Persian following behind her.

Ivysaur remained where she stood.

“I declare that Aly gets the first move! Let the battle begin!” June ordered.

“Ivysaur, use Sleep Powder!” Aly started.

Ivysaur didn’t move, growling at Charmeleon, daring him to attack first.

“IVYSAUR, PUT IT TO SLEEP!” Tears were brimming in Aly’s eyes again.

“I guess we go first,” I told Charmeleon. “Let’s try to wrap this up quick. Ember!”Charmeleon opened his jaws and spewed fire at Ivysaur.

Ivysaur was startlingly fast and jumped over the searing flames, soaring high into the air, even higher than my height! The sunlight was so bright, she disappeared in the sunlight and I couldn’t see her. She became visible as she came down and hit Charmeleon in the head with her own head!

Charmeleon seemed as surprised by that hit as I was watching it.

Even people in the crowd were amazed and muttering or gasping.

I was sweating just a bit. The temperature seemed to have risen since the battle started. Or the intensity of this match was just getting to me.

June was right. Ivysaur had a totally different battling style than what Aly was trying to make her do.

Charmeleon was dazed by the head on collision but shook it off. He extended a claw and made a motion with it, daring Ivysaur to bring it on.

Ivysaur growled louder and screamed out her name, charging at Charmeleon.

“Ivysaur, stop!” Aly tried. “Pleeeeease! Just listen to me!

“Charge right back, Charmeleon!” I countered.

Charmeleon raged out and ran at Ivysaur.

“Fire Fang!”

As they were ready to collide, Charmeleon’s fangs became covered in flames and his jaws opened wide, crunching down on Ivysaur’s head, causing the opponent Pokemon to panic and try to struggle out of Charmeleon’s fiery jaws.

“Don’t let go! Cover it in flames! Ember!”

Before Charmeleon could finish the battle, white balls of light flew quickly inside of Ivysaur’s bulb. The entire plant on the animal’s back glowed white, and a white blast of light fired from her bulb and hit Charmeleon!

Charmeleon flew back and stopped a few feet from my feet. He stood up, bent over a bit. He seemed to be in pain from the attack, which I could understand. But he wasn’t out.

Ivysaur smiled at Charmeleon.

Charmeleon smiled back.

That move… “That was Solar Beam!” I told Aly.

“I know…” Aly nodded. “But, how…?”

I decided to ask the Pokedex.

Solar Beam. This extremely powerful move takes a short while to charge up by absorbing sunlight and energy from the air before launching a beam at the opponent. When the move Sunny Day is used, it not only increases the power of Fire type moves, but moves like SolarBeam take no time at all to charge.

“But, who did Sunny Day?” Aly questioned.

As I wiped the sweat from my forehead, it hit me! “Aly! Ivysaur did it!”

“Huh? Ivysaur doesn’t know Sunny Day!”“Yes, she does! Instead of doing Sleep Powder, she did Sunny Day and raised the temperature and increased the sunlight! It got hot right at that moment!”

The crowd was now murmuring in excitement. I may have even heard someone say, “I knew it did that move.”

“Wow, Ivysaur. I never knew you could do that,” Aly said to her Pokemon, smiling.

Suddenly, Ivysaur began launching Solar Beam attacks back-to-back!

Charmeleon dodged as best as he could, taken by surprise by the sudden attacks.

I became frustrated watching as my Pokemon started getting tired and was slowing down. “Charmeleon! Let’s try this one out! Flamethrower!!!”

Charmeleon stopped and stared as another Solar Beam came at him. He leaped high in the air to dodge. Looking down at Ivysaur, Charmeleon closed his eyes and seemed to be concentrating hard. As he came back down to the ground, Charmeleon opened his eyes and jaws. A deep red flame from within his jaws was swirling, the intensity from the flame making me feel even hotter, sweat now rolling down both sides of my face from under my cap.

“Ivysaur!” A pair of vines flew out and wrapped themselves around Charmeleon’s jaws!

Charmeleon’s eyes widened in surprise and he landed on his feet. He tried to open his jaws and grabbed the vines, trying to wrestle them off, but the vines wouldn’t budge.

I started to feel noticeably less hot.

The sun wasn’t as strong as before. Sunny Day was finally wearing off.

I breathed a sigh of relief. The heat of that move just setting up was difficult to bare.

Ivysaur looked up at the sky and growled. Her bulb was starting to glow. Bright sparkles were being drawn from the atmosphere and the sun and being absorbed by the bulb. She had been trying to hold Charmeleon still to take another Solar Beam, but the Sunny Day went away and now it will take a bit of time to charge up, I realized. But I don’t have much time. I could probably Scratch attack the vines away, but the Solar Beam might still catch us. I need that fire but his mouth is wrapped shut.

Ivysaur gave out a loud cry.

“WAIT!!” I shouted. “YOUR TAIL!!!”

Charmeleon’s eyes widened in realization, and then narrowed in determination. He waved his flame lit tail around Ivysaur’s vines that were wrapped around his jaws.

The vines caught on fire quickly and Ivysaur screamed out, letting go of Charmeleon, waving her flaming vines high in the air. She ran around in circles, screaming in a panic.

The Solar Beam finally launched, shooting high into the air in a dazzling, beautiful shine, eventually dissipating into a set of beautiful sparkles against the sun.

Ivysaur kept running in a panic, her vines waving frantically. Flames suddenly dripped off the vines and fell around her, some landing on her.

“IVYSAAAUUURRRRRR!!! NOOO!!! MY BABY!!!”Ivysaur kept running, and kept getting hit by the dripping fire as her vines became consumed by the flames trailing down to her body. Her entire body was on fire just seconds later. She rolled on the ground in a panic, screaming. The fire did finally die out, but Ivysaur was defeated.

Aly ran to her charred Ivysaur, weeping mournfully.

“This match is over,” June said sadly, but staring at me with what I could’ve sworn was admiration. “Gary and Charmeleon win this match.”

The crowd applauded.

I ran to Aly and her Ivysaur. “Aly…”

She silently returned her Ivysaur to her Poke Ball and wiped her face with her sleeve. Forcing a smile onto her face, she gazed up at me. “Congratulations.” Her smiled faded as she looked down at the Poke Ball. “She got what she deserved, I guess.”

“I am sorry, Aly.”

“For what? You did amazing! That was so incredible! You deserved that win!”

“You Ivysaur is a great battler, Aly,” June said, having walked up to us. “Please, cherish her. She may be difficult now, but be patient with her. Don’t give up on her.”“I’d never give up on a Pokemon!” Aly’s eyes filled with tears. “I love my Ivysaur! No matter what!”

June smiled and extended a hand to help Aly up.

Aly took it and fell immediately into June’s arms, crying.

June held her tight. “There, there,” June said soothingly. “Be strong. For your Pokemon. They all want you strong. So they can be stronger.”

Persian rubbed against Aly’s legs and meowed in her fancy manner.

Aly looked down at Persian and smiled. She let go of June and hugged her Persian tightly again. After a quick sniffle, she looked up at June. “June, you’re just the best! I don’t know what you think you need to learn more about, but you seem to be just nothing short of just… Wow… Just, no words for how amazing you are, June! Thank you so much! I promise, I will get stronger! Ivysaur will obey me one day! All of my Pokemon and I will be stronger and better than ever before!” Aly turned to me. “Gary, you did amazing. You and Charmeleon are an incredible team!”“Thank you, Aly,” I beamed proudly.“Yeah, I have to admit, overcoming what you did with Charmander is an inspiration for me,” Aly admitted. “I can see what June is talking about in you. But, next time, I promise you, it won’t be the same.” Aly shook her head. “We’ll win! Or we’ll at least put up a better fight…”

“No. You’ll win,” June winked.

Aly smiled brightly at June. “We’ll win!”

“So, what are your plans?” I asked Aly.

“I’m going to meet Eusine.”

“Eusine?”

“Yeah, he’s an older guy who lives in Celadon City,” Aly filled me in. “He has been chasing a Legendary Pokemon for the longest time. And I mean long! But, apparently he hasn’t earned its respect yet, so it never appears before him or something. He wants to bond with this Pokemon’s heart. You know, earn its trust. Work alongside it. Capture it! That’s what I want with my Ivysaur. So I figured that maybe this Eusine guy will be of some assistance to me.”“That’s an interesting idea, Aly,” I said.

“Yeah, but that’s if he’s even home,” Aly said sadly. “He is known to travel often at the mere word that this Pokemon has been spotted somewhere.”“What Pokemon is it?” I asked.

Aly thought about it for a minute. “I dunno.”

“Hmmm… Oh, well,” I said, disappointed.

“Gary, let’s go with her!” June insisted. “This would be great for my Pokemon learning experience!”

“Then go along,” I told June. “I told you, I’m getting my Badge and leaving. I’ve no interest in meeting some Pokemon fanatic.”June gave me a puppy dog look of sadness.

I stared back firmly.

“Oh, come on, Gary!” Aly agreed. “Don’t be so mean. She doesn’t want to go alone.” Aly nudged me with her elbow and then winked at me.

I stared back at her blankly. “She’d be going with you.”

“You know what I mean, Gary!” Aly frowned.

“Anyway, I’m going to challenge the Celadon City Gym and come out with a Badge!” I leered back at her.

“Fine, what about you, June?” Aly asked. “Just you and me, girl, meeting Eusine!”

June sighed. “I’ll have to pass. Sorry.”

“Ooohhhh. I see how it is. Sticking by your man, huh? Huh? Huh??” Aly questioned.

“NOO!!” June screamed angrily.

“ALY! Will you get out of here already?” I raged.

“Okay, okay,” Aly said, rolling her eyes with a big smile on her face. “Seriously though, Gary, thanks a lot and good luck to you at the Gym. June, good luck to you in your travels with Gary. You two will learn a lot from each other. I can tell.” Aly then smiled and gave a wink. “No kissing after you win a Badge, ’kay bye!” Aly ran off before me or June could respond.

I sighed and shook my head.

“She was nice,” June smiled after her. “That Ivysaur is something special.”

I stared at June for a moment, and then looked back to where Aly had run.

She was already gone.

“Well, let’s continue looking for this Gym. It’s almost evening. Let’s find this Gym and win this Badge before it gets too late.”

During our walk, I dwelled on the different realms and dimensions of Pokemon. The personalities. The traits. The special abilities. I thought about how every Trainer has their own story to tell and how no two will ever be exactly alike. Or maybe a few would. I thought about how Pokemon and humans are perhaps more alike than some people may realize or are willing to admit. I thought about how many Pokemon Trainers seek different goals, and some seek the exact same goals. But we have to achieve those goals the way we see fit, even if it means taking a different path from close friends.

But we’d all meet up again.

Me.

Robin.

Aly.

Kiwi.

And, I guess, June?

Various goals.

Different paths.

But we’d all meet up again.

In the end.

“Gary! Look! It’s the Celadon City Gym!”

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