A New Life Through The Eyes Of Kanto: An Autobiography

A New Year's Eeveelution

“And you know, I’m thirteen now, Gary!” June brought up.

“Oh! Happy birthday, June,” I said, turning to her for a split second and nodding before turning away.

“And it’s New Years Eve today, too,” June added.

“I know.”

June and I were on our way to Lavender Town, having trivial talk. While it was nice having her back, being able to have some kind of conversation with somebody, I kind of missed the silence of her being gone, too.

It had been a couple of days since we had run into Robin, and I still hadn’t gotten to see any of June’s other Pokemon. She always just told me she was going to go spend some time with them whenever it was time to eat, or snuck off when she thought I was sleeping. Why did she feel so uncomfortable allowing me to meet her many Pokemon? My Pokemon and hers had met before when she first traveled with me, but she wouldn’t let me meet them.

Why?

When I asked, she kept telling me she needed more time. She wanted to be fully comfortable with herself no longer being a Gym Leader, and her Pokemon accepting it, before she could just allow her Pokemon to be on display so easily again. She said that she felt they were a part of her; something special to share. She wanted everything to be okay before revealing this side of her. I reminded her that we already battled before and I’d seen some of her Pokemon already, but she insisted it wasn’t the same thing. Not after all she and her Pokemon had been through to reach their dreams, just to depart from them.

Respecting this, I resisted the urge to even sneakily follow June to spy on her when she left. But the desire was so strong.

June had been asking me questions about things during our time apart.

“Robin has eight Badges,” I mentioned at some point.

Eight?” June asked in surprise. “That’s just wonderful!”

“Yeah,” I muttered quickly, nodding.

“And you have five!!!” June said with too much enthusiasm, clearly trying to make me feel better.

“Yeah,” I repeated, nodding again.

“Hey,” June said, putting her hand on my shoulder, stopping to look at me.

I kept on walking. “I’m fine. We don’t have time to be stopping. We have to keep going.”

June didn’t say anything and stayed behind as I walked past her. Eventually, she ran up to me, her boots crunching in the grass and snow. “Sure is cold,” she muttered. “Hey!”

I stopped and stared at what lay before us.

A huge stone block sat in the grass in front of a town.

STONE TOWN

“Gary, look!” June said happily. “We’re in Stone Town!”

“Yeah, obviously,” I stated snottily. “I know about this place, a bit. It’s right at the foot of Evolution Mountain, where evolution stones can be found sometimes.”

The enormous Evolution Mountain towered behind the many houses inside of Stone Town. A tall cliff towered above the town as well, but not higher than Evolution Mountain did behind it.

“We have other places to go. Come on, June.”

“NO!” June insisted strongly.

I turned to her in surprise.

“I’d like to explore this place, Gary,” June said quietly. “Please?”

“You can, June,” I allowed. “But I have other places to go. So, if you want to check this area out, be my guest. I have to keep pressing on.”

“Damn it, Gary!” June sounded pissed. “I want to explore Stone Town! Why do you have to be the boss? I want to just check out this one little town and you have to go and be a complete jerk with me about it!”

“I am the boss here!” I shouted back. “If you don’t want to travel with me, then you go off on your own! YOU want to travel with me!

“So you don’t want me traveling with you anymore! FINE!

“I didn’t say that! But if you wanna go, THEN GO!” My rage was only building the longer I had to deal with June.

“Why do you have to be such a control freak?? I just want to see this town for a moment!”

“Why?”

“BECAUSE!”

“BECAUSE WHY?”

YYYYAAAAAAUUUGGGHH!!! I WANNA EVOLVE MY EEVEE YOU JERK! I HATE YOU SO MUCH RIGHT NOW!!” June covered her face and ran away from me, into Stone Town.

“June!” Regret was filling my now quickly beating heart. “Wait!” I ran after her.

June was crying, running as fast as she could, away from me.

I picked up my pace to grab her.

June bounced back and I ran into her, surprised, and we collapsed to the ground.

“Hey!” a voice cried out.

June was sprawled on top of me as I lay on my back. She opened her eyes and stared at me, her eyes wet from tears.

I turned to see who she had run into.

A young guy with long brown hair all in his face looked down at us in surprise. “Hey! Are you two alright?” he asked softly, kneeling down next to us.

“Eeveeee!” An Eevee ran up to me and sniffed me, wagging its tail lightly. A stone hung from around its neck. It then walked over to June and sniffed her, wagging its tail more eagerly.

The kid reached out and June took his hand, being lifted up.

June wiped her eyes as the kid reached out to pull me up, too.

“Are you two okay?” the young boy asked again.

I turned to June.

“We’re fine,” June said shortly.

I nodded to the kid. “Everything’s alright.”

“Why are you crying?” he asked June.

June wiped her eyes again. “I’m okay.” She looked around and smiled a little. “This place is beautiful.”

“Welcome to Stone Town,” the kid warmly welcomed us with a smile. “My name is Mikey. And this is my Eevee.”

“Eevee!” Eevee happily rubbed up against June’s jean legs.

“Awwww! Too adorable!” June gushed, kneeling down to pet Eevee.

Eevee seemed thrilled with this and stood up on its hind legs and licked June’s face, its tail wagging. The stone sat against the fur on Eevee’s chest.

I stared down at them both and rolled my eyes, bored. I wanted to just leave already and let out my breath impatiently through my nostrils.

“Thank you,” Mikey told June. “So, who are you two?”

“Gary,” I said quickly.

“My name is June!” June giggled as Eevee continued licking her face.

“It’s great to meet you two. What brings you here?”

I turned to June, an impatient look on my face, crossing my arms in front of my chest.

June glanced at me out of the corner of her eye, then smiled at Mikey. “I was hoping that, maybe, I could obtain an evolution stone from here, just to be honest. That’d be wonderful!”

Mikey’s eyes widened in surprise. “Really?”

June nodded, petting the licking Eevee. “I mean, I’ll gladly pay for it or earn it in some way. I certainly don’t intend to just take a rare stone from here for free, of course.”

“Well, June, you’ve come at a great time, actually!” Mikey raised a hand, rubbing his light, though messy, stubble around the lower part of his face, around his mouth and chin. “It’s almost the new year and we’re having a special ceremony which will involve Pokemon battles, a fireworks show, and giveaways of evolution stones!”

“Oh, my gosh, that sounds great!” June gasped, hugging Eevee tightly.

Eevee made a cheerful “squee” in June’s arms as she squeezed it.

Mikey laughed. “Well, you’re both welcome to join. If you’re both interested, come along with me!”

June stood up, letting go of Eevee.

Eevee ran to Mikey, who picked it up, chuckling as Eevee licked his face.

June and I followed Mikey.

The town was beautiful, I had to admit. The houses were luxurious and rich; tall and expressive. The lawns on the houses held huge hedges and gorgeous flowers I didn’t recognize, not that I knew a lot about agriculture or plant life to begin with.

Mikey took us up to one fairly large house at the end of the block and we walked onto the lawn, past the house, and around to the back. “This is where I live.”

“Wow!” June exclaimed. “This place is wonderful!”

Mikey laughed. “Thank you!”

“Yeah, this is really something,” I agreed.

“Thank you again!” Mikey beamed.

The backyard was probably five times as big as my entire house! Shrubs and other incredible, beautiful plants grew near the house and circled around a large fountain near the end of the backyard. People were all over the place, some standing and some sitting, all chatting. Pokemon ran around them, playing. There were several tables containing food, as well as a couple of other long tables with items on them I couldn’t make out.

“Wow. Guess we’re a bit late to the party,” June laughed.

“No, you’re just in time!” Mikey responded.

“Mikey!” a strong voice called out. “There you are!”

I turned and stared in shock as a bald older man wearing red overalls with no shirt underneath, revealing his thick muscles, and red boots approached us.

A Flareon walked by his side.

“Pyro!” Mikey casually strolled up to the man.

“Mikey! Where’ve you been?” The red man extended his hands as he questioned the younger Mikey.

“I was walking around with Eevee,” Mikey said shyly, lowering his head.

“There he is!” another voice called out.

I looked up and continued to stare in shock as another older man with blue stretch pants leaving nothing to the imagination, blue sandals, and a blue shirt as tight as his pants, showing off his own pecs and whatnot, his long blue hair reaching far down his back, walked over.

A Vaporeon walked alongside him.

A man with yellow biker shorts with black lightning bolts on the outside ran up to the red man before the blue man stopped by him as well. This yellow man kept running in place, also wearing yellow and black running sneakers with the design of yellow lightning on each side and a tight, fitted yellow runner’s shirt looking ready for a race I hadn’t been aware of. His yellow hair was one giant lightning bolt reaching for the sky.

A Jolteon accompanied him.

“Rainer! Sparky! Brothers!” Mikey beamed proudly at them.

What the...? I questioned, staring at them with wide eyes, trying to take in the three men’s outfits. I gave up and just decided to whip out the Pokedex.

Flareon. The Flame Pokemon and one of Eevee’s evolved forms when a Fire Stone is used. A Flareon’s fire attacks can burn as high as 3,100°F. Its fluffy fur is used to keep the temperature of its body from burning too hot.

Vaporeon. The Bubble Jet Pokemon. Another of Eevee’s evolved forms when the Water Stone is used. When their tails vibrate, some believe it to mean that rain is soon to come.

Jolteon. The Lightning Pokemon. Eevee’s evolved form when the Thunder Stone is used. Jolteon are highly sensitive and when their mood changes, they charge electricity. A startled Jolteon’s fur stands up on end and shoots out bristles.

Pyro focused his gaze on me and June. “Who are your friends, Mikey?”

Mikey turned to me and June. “This is Gary, and June,” he said, pointing at us. “Gary, June, this is Pyro, Sparky, and Rainer. My brothers.”

“It’s nice to meet you three,” I smiled, walking to them and shaking their hands.

“A true pleasure,” June said, shaking Pyro’s hand.

“June, what a gorgeous name.” Pyro stared deeply into June’s eyes, holding her hand with both of his own.

Rainer bumped Pyro out of the way with his shoulder and grabbed June’s hand in his own hands. “The pleasure is all mine,” he said, holding her hand to his face, preparing to greet her with a kiss.

Sparky appeared suddenly, right in front of Rainer, shoving him back and taking June’s hands into both of his own. He greeted her hands with a kiss immediately. “Welcome, June, to Stone Town. I could escort you around and show you all this humble town has to offer.”

“We’re not here for a tour,” I said loudly and seriously. “June is interested in finding out if she can obtain a stone to evolve her Eevee. Then, we’re out of here.”

June turned to me and then away, sadly.

Sparky let go of June’s hands quickly and stared at me in shock as if he hadn’t seen me before. “I apologize, Gary!” he said quickly. “Please, forgive me! I never meant to intrude on your girlfriend! I’ll gladly give her a stone! I assume she wants a Thunder Stone to evolve her dear Eevee into a magnificent Electric type, Jolteon!”

“Why would she do that?” Pyro asked, stepping up. “Do you not see the red on her? It’s obvious she wants to own a Flareon, the Fire type!”

“Nonsense!” Rainer stated. “She desires only Vaporeon! Just look at her and see clearly that she is designed both in beauty, grace, and elegance to raise Water type Pokemon.”

The brothers began to argue amongst each other.

“Brothers! Please!” Mikey begged.

The three continued arguing, ignoring Mikey.

“SHE ISN’T MY DAMN GIRLFRIEND!” I blew up at them, stopping the argument.

This also stopped all other conversation at the party. Everyone’s eyes were now on us, including the Pokemon’s.

June looked down, blushing red.

“Look at the red in her face!” Pyro shouted. “Flareon! Don’t worry, my dear June. I shall get you a Fire Stone immediately!”

“NO!” Rainer and Sparky yelled.

The three brothers ran to the far away tables that held several things on them that I couldn’t see clearly, arguing and yelling, their Pokemon following them closely, also arguing with each other with barks and cries.

Mikey sighed and turned to us, an embarrassed smile on his face. “Sorry about that... Ha ha... They always get that way. I’ll escort you to the table where we keep all of our evolution stones!” He walked ahead of us to the table where his brothers were arguing.

“This place looks so nice. Eevee, come outside and see, honey!” June threw Eevee’s Poke Ball to the ground. It popped open and Eevee smiled up at June.

“Eee?” Mikey’s Eevee turned to June’s Eevee and smiled, leaping from Mikey’s arms and stepping up to June’s Eevee, its tail wagging wildly.

June’s Eevee looked at Mikey’s, and her tail wagged, too.

The two Eevee sniffed each other. Mikey’s Eevee licked June’s Eevee’s nose, and June’s Eevee turned around and wagged her tail in Mikey’s Eevee’s face before running away. Mikey’s Eevee gave chase.

That is so sweet!” June squealed, clasping her hands together and bringing them to her chest. “Your Eevee is so adorable! He’s so well raised!”

“Thank you, June,” Mikey lowered his face shyly, smirking.

Mikey’s Eevee is a male, I noted, silently acknowledging June’s continued ability to read Pokemon.

The table the three of us arrived at was covered in every evolution stone imaginable! The Fire Stone, Water Stone, Thunder Stone, Leaf Stone, Moon Stone, Sun Stone, Shiny Stone, Dusk Stone, and Dawn Stone. They all lay in their own purple box.

“Wow. That’s, like, every stone to evolve a Pokemon,” I mumbled.

“And some of these stones will be given away tonight at some point,” Mikey informed me.

“When do the events take place?” June asked.

“Pretty soon, June.” Mikey looked to her.

“HERE!”

“HERE!”

“HERE!”

Pyro, Sparky and Rainer appeared in front of June, down on one knee, holding up an evolution stone, looking like they were proposing marriage.

Pyro was of course holding the Fire Stone, Rainer with the Water Stone, and Sparky with the Thunder Stone.

June stared at them in surprise. “Ummm… to be honest…” June began. “I wouldn’t mind earning mine fair and square!” She giggled a little bit.

“But it’s okay, June,” Pyro said. “Take this Fire Stone and raise your Flareon.”

“No, I insist you take this Water Stone and own Vaporeon!” Rainer stated.

“Your sense of fairness is novel and noted forever in my heart, and I reward you with this Thunder Stone, that you may own Jolteon as your choice,” Sparky insisted.

“No! No! No!” June shook her head, then smiled. “You’re all sweet, but I want to earn my stone fair and square!”

The three brothers looked up at June in shock. “But, which one will you choose if you win?” Pyro asked.

June winked. “Let’s get this competition started and find out!”

The three brothers looked at each other and then smiled and nodded with a grunt. They got to their feet.

“Well said!” Sparky announced. “Attention everyone!”

Everyone was already watching the commotion we had been causing, in silence.

June and Mikey’s Eevee stopped rolling around in the dirt with each other and paid attention.

“Welcome, everyone, to our New Year’s Evolution Party!” Sparky said to loud applause.

June and I joined in the cheering.

“Everyone with a Pokemon who can evolve by stone is allowed to compete,” Sparky continued. “The winner will obtain an evolution stone of their choice and we shall witness a beautiful evolution tonight! Everyone, please take your seats as the evening will be dawning upon us soon! This competition will be hosted by my brothers, Pyro, Rainer, Mikey, and myself! So enjoy yourself, the food, and the battles! And last but not least, our special New Year’s fireworks display!”

Everybody cheered and walked over to one of several chairs.

June and I walked over to find seats, too. June found a comfortable looking, wooden brown chair, a matching, empty chair next to her.

I walked away from her and over to a plastic, white chair that was not very comfortable to sit in, but I didn’t care. I didn’t even want to be here in the first place.

Mikey, Pyro, Rainer, and Sparky stood in the middle of the backyard with wide grins, their Pokemon smiling just as well.

The other Pokemon who were out seemed to have taken their places next to their Trainers who were sitting.

June’s Eevee nuzzled noses with Mikey’s before running and leaping into June’s lap, curling up.

June’s eyes met with mine for a moment before we turned away from each other.

Mikey’s Eevee looked at June’s Eevee fondly, standing next to his Trainer, his tail wagging slowly from side to side.

“Hello, everyone. I’m Mikey,” Mikey greeted. “My big brother, Pyro, will be handing out tickets to all of you with a number on it. We will call out certain numbers and those numbers will be our battles during this competition.”

Pyro handed me a number and continued handing out more tickets.

I had number 6.

After Pyro was done, he stood next to his brothers again. “Now that I have handed out the tickets, Rainer will call out the numbers for our battles to begin!”

“Enjoy yourselves, win or lose, and remember that we all love Pokemon!” Rainer declared to huge applause. “Now, numbers 1 and 7, please step up to battle!”

A young girl and a much older woman stepped up and walked over to the four brothers. The girl had a Staryu by her feet, while the woman clutched her Poke Ball in her hand.

The four brothers stepped out of the way and the two females stepped several feet apart, giving each other room.

“Staryu, go!” the girl pointed in front of her.

“I choose Poliwhirl!” the woman tossed her Poke Ball.

Poliwhirl tried putting Staryu under Hypnosis attack, but Staryu flew through the air like a jet, spinning rapidly and knocking off the Hypnosis, and slammed into Poliwhirl with Rapid Spin. Staryu took complete control of the battle by ending it with Thunder.

The girl was thrilled by her victory and hugged her Staryu excitedly to great enthusiasm from the crowd.

Rainer ran over and doused Staryu in water from a freshly opened water bottle before backing away again.

I guessed this was how he was refreshing Staryu from any energy lost during the battle.

“An excellent battle!” Sparky leaped into the air eagerly.

“Agreed!” Rainer agreed. “Next is number 15!”

A girl who looked too young to be a Trainer approached, her Nidorino at her side.

Staryu used Thunder to try and overpower Nidorino, but Nidorino managed to his feet and returned the attack with a surprise Thunderbolt! Staryu was defeated immediately.

Nidorino was given some water to drink and sprayed with a Super Potion by Rainer. He congratulated Nidorino before backing up and calling in the next Trainer.

The next Trainer was a teenager who used a Gloom.

Gloom used Sleep Powder and attacked mercilessly at Nidorino, but Nidorino woke up eventually and looked just fine, attacking with Fury Attack and finally ending the match with Ice Beam.

After Rainer took a bit of care of Nidorino’s wounds, he called in the next Trainer, number 9, who had an Eevee which was very fast and managed to dodge each and every attack Nidorino had, and defeated it with Tail Whip and then Dig attack.

A young man stepped up to battle Eevee with his Togetic.

Togetic Paralyzed Eevee with Thunder Wave, slowing it down, and then finished it with Rock Smash.

“And the next number we have is number 101!” Rainer introduced.

June stood up and approached her challenger with determination. She sent out Eevee, the very Pokemon Togetic had defeated earlier.

Eevee blinded Togetic with an onslaught of Sand Attacks, and then used Take Down.

Togetic tried to fight back with several moves, but Togetic couldn’t attack straight with the sand blinding it, and Eevee ended the battle with a Bite, and finally Quick Attack.

June did well for a while, taking down her opponents with quick, slick moves and overcoming adversities. She seemed to be getting into the groove with every win and gaining more and more confidence.

The sky was darkening and lights from lamp posts and inside of the house and neighboring houses started to turn on.

“Number 119, come on up!” Rainer urged.

A man stepped up. He was very tall and muscular.

June looked at him in awe. A small smile crept across her face as she observed him, looking him up and down adoringly.

June better damn well focus, I thought angrily, my teeth tightening against each other.

The Trainer sent out a Pikachu.

June’s Eevee took the first hit from its Thunderbolt, but Eevee hung in there and used Tail Whip.

Pikachu used Double Team as June used Dig, and Eevee’s Dig became a complete waste as it missed. Pikachu then used Growl, lowering Eevee’s Attack, but Eevee used Shadow Ball and managed to catch the real Pikachu, avoiding the clones, causing them to disappear.

Eevee used Dig again and caught Pikachu, making another win.

The next Trainer, a very startling gorgeous young girl with a Misdreavus, lost to a total onslaught of Eevee using Shadow Ball. She didn’t even get an attack in.

Secretly, my rage from earlier was still inside of me and I sort of wanted June to lose. To teach her a lesson that coming here was a waste of time and that what I say, goes. I also felt that maybe, I just was kind of swooned by the beauty of June’s opponent.

“June’s Eevee is doing really well, folks!” Rainer declared. “We shall see how it does against number 6!”

I looked at June as my number was called.

June caught my glance and stared back solemnly.

I stood up and casually walked over to her. My hand grasped the only Poke Ball I had that contained a Pokemon who evolved by stone. “Weepinbell, let’s do this!”

“Beeeell!” Weepinbell said.

June looked at me furiously.

I glared back.

“Weepinbell, use Razor Leaf, now!”

“Eevee, dodge it and use Shadow Ball!” June commanded.

Weepinbell fired leaves at Eevee, and Eevee dodged the first one, but was hit by the second one.

“Now, Slam that thing!” My fury was unleashed, flowing out of me now.

Weepinbell wrapped its vine around Eevee and raised her high into the air. Weepinbell swung its vine down to the ground.

“VEEEE!” Eevee rolled to a stop, looking exhausted already.

“Finish the damn thing now!” I wanted to completely and easily destroy June in this battle, every bit of anger I still had inside of me at her, bubbling over the top.

“Charm it!” June tried desperately.

“Eeeeveee?” Eevee looked innocently at Weepinbell as Weepinbell raised her high in the air for another Slam attack.

Even I couldn’t deny that Eevee look irresistible in a way. Completely harmless and innocent.

“Weepinbell…” I called out faintly, trying not to order it to ease up on its attack.

“Charm! Charm! Charm!” June chanted.

“Eeeeeeevvvveeeeeeeee!” Eevee sang out.

I fell to my knees.

Eevee was just too cute to attack!

“Weepinbell, wait!” I blurted out before I could catch myself.

Weepinbell was also captivated by Eevee’s Charm. It couldn’t fight back against her. It let go of Eevee, and Eevee hit the ground gently, shaking her head and smiled.

“Now, use Double Edge!” June told her Pokemon.

“Weepinbell!” I snapped out of my daze, standing up. “Slam it! Finish it!”

The vine whipped out, but Eevee charged forward and slammed right into the attack! Weepinbell’s vine was forced back and Eevee flew into Weepinbell with rapid speed, sending Weepinbell flying, landing at my feet.

“Stop that runt with Sleep Powder!”

Weepinbell sprayed a blue power in front of Eevee.

“Rain Dance, now!”

Eevee ran in circles rapidly until she became a blue blur.

A blue ball of energy rose from her and soared high into the sky. The ball exploded loudly and, before I realized it, it was pouring rain!

The Sleep Powder had nearly reached Eevee, but the rain doused the powder and Eevee was wide awake!

Soaking in the rain, I gasped and stared in shock at June, stunned by her attack. I’d never seen Rain Dance used in such a way!

She glared coldly back at me, getting wet from her attack. Seeing my shock, I could’ve sworn the coldness on her face eased up just a little bit. June closed her eyes and took a deep breath. Her eyes opened, and I saw a sign of warmth in them. “Gary, I’m sorry, but this battle ends right now,” she said softly. “Eevee, use Return!”

“VVVVVEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!I” Eevee gave Weepinbell a glare of determination, a glint shining in her eyes, before rapidly running at it.

“Stun Spore! Um! Razor Leaf! Poison! Slam it! Gah!” I was unsure of what to do, panicking in the moment. I’d never felt so uncomfortable battling June before. I knew she had completely taken control of the battlefield. Of the battle itself. I’d never felt so helpless in my life.

Weepinbell, confused by my commands, watched helplessly as Eevee tackled it with all her strength.

Return; a move I didn’t need my Pokedex to explain for me to understand how it worked. The more love the Pokemon has for its owner, the stronger the damage.

Weepinbell was tossed like an empty cardboard box, but slammed into me with what was arguably the strength of a truck.

I collapsed to the ground and could barely breathe, my breath knocked out of me, my eyes closed tight.

“Beeell,” I heard Weepinbell mumble from on top of me.

I groaned in pain.

“Gary!” I heard June gasp.

I could hear running towards me. It stopped closeby.

“Whoa! Looks like Gary might be in quite a bit of pain!” I heard Rainer shout.

Slowly, I struggled to grab Weepinbell’s Poke Ball from my belt.

“Gary, are you alright?” I heard Mikey shout from possibly outer space.

I lifted a hand containing Weepinbell’s Poke Ball I managed to grasp and returned him. I just managed to attach his Poke Ball to my belt before my hand collapsed and my eyes closed. I felt someone lift me up by my arms. My arms were slung over something and I was carried somewhere, my feet dragging the ground. I shook my head and opened my eyes. My vision was blurry, but after closing my eyes and shaking my head again, I reopened them and saw Pyro and Sparky, my arms slung over their shoulders as they carried me towards an empty, wooden brown chair. They sat me on it and I stared up at them, feeling a little woozy.

“You alright there, kid?” Pyro asked, handing me a bottle of water.

I just nodded, sipping from the bottle gently. “Thank you,” I muttered. I took a deep breath and let it out slowly.

“Lost your wind there, huh?” Sparky chuckled.

I just nodded, lowering my head. I did terribly during my battle.

Pyro returned back to the field where the battles took place. “It seems that Gary is alright now!” Pyro said to loud claps.

Several people gave out calls to me, congratulating me and patting my back for what I knew was a terrible effort.

I just nodded with embarrassment. Looking up at the sky, I saw that it was pitch black. Several stars twinkled against the sky.

June and Eevee battled a Roselia, a Sunkern, and a Lombre to their final, well deserved victory.

Watching in awe at how amazing she was battling, I realized that she must be getting more in tune with her Pokemon. She must be getting over having quit being a Gym Leader, slowly. One step at a time. I couldn’t help but smile.

June happened to turn to me then.

I stared at her, my eyes wide open, my smile fading.

She stared back, and the smallest hint of a smile crept across her lips.

I couldn’t resist. Her smile was returned back.

She immediately beamed even broader.

“Congratulations, June!” Rainer said loudly. “Your spectacular Eevee is the winner of the New Year’s Evolution Party!”

Everyone stood up, going nuts for the two.

I gladly stood up and applauded June, too.

June waved at everyone and gave me an extended smile.

I nodded at her and kept on clapping.

“June, as the winner of the New Year’s Evolution Party, you have definitely earned an evolutionary stone,” Pyro informed her. “So, will you take the Fire Stone?”

“Or the Water Stone?” Rainer winked.

“Or the obvious Thunder Stone!” Sparky nodded frantically.

June closed her eyes and sighed. Her smile turned to her Eevee in front of her.

Eevee looked back up at her, wagging her tail.

Mikey’s Eevee crept up behind June’s Eevee.

“Veee?” Mikey’s Eevee said sweetly.

“Veeee!” June’s Eevee turned around with joy.

Mikey’s Eevee licked June’s Eevee on the cheek, and June’s Eevee got closer to Mikey’s Eevee and sat down, nuzzling her head against Mikey’s Eevee.

Everyone adored the scene and several people took pictures.

Their adorableness was enough to get me to smile as my face heated up at the sight of them.

“IT’S TIME!” Pyro’s voice rang out, and he ran towards the fountain, leaping over the shrubs and flowers, disappearing from view.

Sparky and Jolteon led the way for Flareon, Rainer, Vaporeon, and Mikey to follow once they realized something with a gasp.

Everyone watched as something rustled in the bushes before an enormous, metallic box was pushed into view.

It was silver with a black screen, resembling a television.

I could just make out Sparky’s yellow hair pushing the box before he ran behind the bushes again.

The people around me muttered with excitement.

I continued watching on in confusion.

Suddenly, a big, bold, yellow number 20 appeared on the box.

19

18

The crowd began to count down the numbers.

I gasped, realizing what was happening.

A hand grabbed mine and I turned around in surprise. “June?”

June smiled. “I’m sorry about earlier, Gary,” she apologized. “I shouldn’t have forced you to come here. If you didn’t want to, I should’ve-”

“June, stop,” I interrupted. “I was wrong, not you. Okay?”

“No, Gary,” June started. “I even said I hate you. I didn’t mean-”

5

4

“June, just shut up!” I wrapped my arms around her in a hug and kissed her cheek quickly.

She gasped in a volume close to a scream.

I backed up from her and turned away from her with a smile. “ONE! HAPPY NEW YEEEEARRRRR!!!!!!”

I didn’t hear June say it back. She was still in shock.

Fireworks fired into the sky from behind the fountain. They exploded in multiple colors. Reds, blues, yellows, greens. Shapes of Pokemon were visible in the explosion of fireworks in the air. Vaporeon, Jolteon, Flareon, Eevee, Umbreon, Espeon, Glaceon, Leafeon. There was also Pikachu, Vileplume, Sunflora, Bellossom, Mismagius, Froslass, Roserade, Wigglytuff, Starmie, Vulpix, and many others I didn’t recognize. The sky was illuminated beautifully.

“Happy New Year, June,” I said, gazing upon her face which was brightened by the lights above.

Her hand was on her cheek where I had kissed her. She shakily smiled, then wrapped her arms around me and hugged me back tightly. “HAPPY NEW YEAR, GARY!!!” She pressed her soft mouth against my cheek, keeping them on me for a long while.

“Alright, alright... Enough already.” I gently pushed her off of me and wiped my cheek off, sneering at her.

She giggled at me, lowering her eyes as she went red in the face. Her lips opened to speak.

The smile on her face faded as her face turned to that of complete horror. “NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!” she shrieked.

My eyes widened in fright and I looked in the direction she was.

Some little children were surrounding June’s Eevee. The children all had an evolution stone in their hands. There were four children, each with a different stone. One held a Fire Stone. Another held a Water Stone. The third child, the Thunderstone. And the last child had a Fire Stone. They all were reaching out to press it onto Eevee. The kids were laughing gleefully as they neared Eevee with the stone, Eevee cowering, no place to go, balling up.

June snatched her Eevee up at the last second as the kids’ stones all missed and touched each other.

The kids looked up at June in surprise. A couple began to cry, while the other two stood up and struggled to reach June’s Eevee with their stones.

June clutched her Eevee tight against her, staring at the kids as if they were terrifying demons.

Everyone had turned to see what the commotion was about.

Even Mikey, his brothers and their Pokemon had stepped out from the bushes to see what was going on, a few fireworks going off into the air before there was complete silence.

“Oh, my gosh! My baby!” a woman screamed, followed by several other shocked cries.

A few women ran up, each one grabbing a kid from the ground, taking the stones from their hands and scolding their children, and then walking up to June to apologize.

June clutched her Eevee even tighter and just nodded at them as they apologized, staring in horror at them and backing away.

Pyro and his brothers ran up to June. “June, are you alright?” Pyro asked urgently.

“I’m fine! Please!” June backed up further and pressed her face into her Pokemon’s back.

“June, is everything okay?” Mikey asked hesitantly.

“Please, I’m fine,” June said in a muffled, weak voice, clutching Eevee even tighter, seeming to be trying to hide behind her.

“June…” Mikey tried.

“Mikey, it’s okay.” Pyro placed a hand on Mikey’s shoulder and turned to me. He smiled and nodded, as did Rainer and Sparky, then he guided Mikey away, followed by his other two brothers.

I looked at June in confusion, not understanding what was going on.

She was shivering hard. Not just her, but her Eevee.

I approached her cautiously. “June...? What’s wrong...?”

June turned to me, fear plastered on her face. “My Eevee!”

“I know. I saw. They almost evolved it for you, ha ha.”

June stared at me in disbelief. “Evolved?” She gave me a dirty, furious look. “Gary, they almost killed my Eevee!”

“WHAT?”

“Gary,” she whispered, her voice trembling. “Don’t you know what happens when you apply more than one means of evolution onto an Eevee at once??”

The look on her face sent shivers throughout my body. My heart beat terribly hard against my chest. I shook with each beat I felt. I could barely manage to shake my head.

“They die…” June answered.

I gasped.

“A slow, painful, horrible death,” June continued to whisper. She kissed her Eevee repeatedly and then returned her to her Poke Ball.

The moment of the night was now ruined. It seemed that everyone was aware of what had nearly happened as we all stared at June in silence.

*

“Are you okay, June?” I asked.

June nodded silently.

Our walk went on uninterrupted.

We had left the party early, despite an invitation to stay the night, and constant apologies to June from everybody there.

The mothers of the children who nearly killed June’s Eevee apologized profusely and said repeatedly that their young children had no idea of what they were doing.

June accepted all of the apologies and politely and quietly declined staying, insisting on leaving. She had just nearly lost a beloved Pokemon of hers. She was in no mood for festivities anymore. She thanked everyone and said how much she appreciated the party and the hospitality.

Before leaving, Pyro whispered something into June’s ear.

After a moment of silence, staring that the ground, thinking, June whispered something back.

Pyro ran to the table full of evolution stones and ran back, handing June a small bag.

June looked into it and managed a smile, thanked him, and we left.

Now, we were out of Stone Town and walking down a path of pavement, grass and trees lining our path.

I didn’t know what to say to June, so I didn’t say anything. But I couldn’t help but think of how close June had come to losing yet another Pokemon. First, Electrode… I thought.

“June!” a voice called, the sound of running footsteps coming from behind us.

June and I turned back to see Mikey running fast after us.

“Mikey!” June ran to him. “What are you doing here?”

“June!” Mikey stopped in front of her, breathing heavily. “June. I’m so sorry about what happened. We all feel horrible. Please, can you ever forgive me?”

“Mikey,” June smiled, one hand on his shoulder. “You did nothing wrong. Nobody did. It was just an accident.”

“But, why are you leaving, June?” Mikey asked, staring at her sadly.

June sighed, smiling. “I had so much fun, Mikey. Too much fun.” June giggled a little bit. “I needed to get out of there and continue on with Gary. It was time.” June turned to me and smiled.

I stared back, but didn’t return her feigned joy.

Mikey’s eyes turned to mine, and then back to June. “Will you come back someday, June?” he asked.

“I bet you I will, Mikey,” June said happily. She stepped to him and hugged him tightly.

Mikey hugged her back. When they released each other, Mikey turned to me. “What about you, Gary?”

I nodded. “I’ll do my best to get back here and see you again one day.”We shook hands.

“Thanks, you guys. I have to get back now, but take care and come back soon!”

He waved and ran back home.

June and I waved back before we turned around and continued on our path.

June seemed a little bit happier now.

“Say, June?”

“Hm?”

“What stone did you get from them for your Eevee?”

She didn’t say anything.

I decided not to ask again, realizing how stupid of a question that was. It was too soon to be asking about using evolution stones on Eevee when she had nearly lost her Eevee from too many evolution stones being used on her at once.

June opened the little bag and pulled out a stone.

The Leaf Stone!

She tossed it to me, smiling.

I caught it and stared at it. “Huh?” I said in confusion.

She closed up the bag. As she slipped it into her jeans, winking at me, I could make out the shape of something else in the bag, outlined by her tight jeans.

“They gave you two stones?” I asked, shocked.

“They felt bad,” June said, the smile fading from her face. “So, I got one for you, too.”

I stared at her in shock. “Thank you, June. That’s so kind of you! I really appreciate that. But, what stone did you choose?”

She looked ahead solemnly and didn’t answer.

I didn’t ask again. For real this time.

We walked ahead in silence once again.

June looked over to me after a while, and I looked back. She placed a hand where I had kissed her and a big smile spread on her face, her eyes twinkling towards me.

I looked away and glared at the ground, regretting what I’d done back then. “Look, I was just excited over the New Year and wanted to just forget our argument,” I explained. “I wanted to bring in the New Year on a good note. I made a mistake. Get over it, okay?”

She was walking very close to me now, bumping into me a little bit. I tried moving away, but she followed me, keeping close by my side.

I sighed, feeling a little bad for her after what had occurred with her Eevee.

What a way to bring in the New Year.

With another sigh, I let her walk close to me.

She stayed against my side as we walked along the road to Lavender Town.

For a while during our walk, my mind wasn’t focused on Robin and his eight Badges, Dark City, or Pokemon at all.

It was now a new year, with a fresh look on life, a brand new time to rejoice and be happy and appreciate what is around me.

A time for an enormous change in my life, and for everyone I know.

A time the entire world would be flipped completely upside down and shaken violently.

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