Chapter 10: Notes
Check the bleachers.
It was a simple message scripted in Misty’s impeccable font, curvy and girlish, but with a hint of tomboyish scrawl that suggested speed. The note innocently hung off his gym doors, flapping precariously in the Viridian City wind so he pulled the piece of instruction into his leather jacket before it decided to take flight. Unlocking the doors and entering his abode curiously, Gary flicked on the gym lights to illuminate the expanse of field where he battled daily with novice trainers and claimed many a fangirls’ hearts. His observant forest eyes scanned the preliminary area for traces of foul play, but nothing appeared out of the ordinary.
Remembering the message from earlier, he pulled the purple square of paper from his jacket pocket and reread the words. Glancing up towards the bleachers where spectators often examined his prowess and swooned at his debonair performance, the cinnamon haired gym leader huffed in an exhausted manner and slowly shuffled over to his destination.
“What in Mew’s name is this about?” he mumbled to himself, a mesh of giddy excitement and slight annoyance at what his strange, but endearing girlfriend was plotting. The brunette’s day had been an unsatisfying and busy event, the morning filled with unsuccessful trainers trying to earn his impossibly difficult Earth Badge, the afternoon calling for a long winded meeting with Lance and a happier set of phone calls from his grandfather and Tracey informing him about a new Pokemon they’d discovered. Now it was bordering seven in the evening and as much as Gary was hoping to call it a very early night and catch up on some much needed rest, he would never refuse any efforts put forth by the love of his life. No matter what trouble she was brewing.
Glancing around the bottom rows of bleachers, the tall brunette saw nothing that would signal a present, but just a frown pulled his lips from overjoyed to dejected, another purple square caught his attention peeking out from in between two seats. Shambling along until he was before the inoffensive sheet of paper, the spiky haired expert trainer slowly plucked the Post-It note into reading distance and scanned the three quick words printed there.
Your kitchen please.
The kitchen? What could she have done in the kitchen of his home? Did his amazingly awesome firecracker plan a special evening dinner for them? The excitement added a hop to his step as Gary vaulted over the protective grate that separated the bleachers and arena, and started jogging towards the back of the gym to his home. At the same time, a ball of light erupted from Gary’s hip and a velveteen fox creature made strides with the brunette as he jogged to the back of the gym.
“Umbre, Breon bre, Breon, Umbreon?” the moonlight Pokemon asked her master in excitement when the leader of Viridian Gym bolted through the back entrance and into the foyer of him home.
“I have not the slightest idea Umbreon, but I’m hoping it’s some sort of pleasant surprise.” It’s a short distance to the kitchen, which was hardly used because Gary’s didn’t enjoy cooking and only did when absolutely necessary. The pristine cabinets and shiny marble countertops were empty of any activity and as the pair scanned the area, there was no dinner and no Misty to be found.
“Umbre! Eonbre?” the dark type yipped suddenly, paws on the kitchen table and vigorously nodding at a small post sitting atop a neatly wrapped pastry. The green eyed man walked over, chastising Umbreon for her poor manners and shooing her from the table, and took up his next clue. A Creme de Fleur, the youngest Oak’s favorite indulgence. He unwrapped his delightful treat and took a savory bite before looking to his message.
Take a walk to your room.
This was getting interesting. The expert trainer hadn’t felt this much anticipation for a while. One more taste for him and then the Viridian Gym leader tossed the sweet treat to his beloved friend, who’d had a penchant for Creme de Fleurs much like her master. ‘Pidgeys of a feather, flock together’ was his amused thought as his large hand brushed the velvet fur atop of his Pokemon’s head before moving together to the stairs. Speeding passed the brunette stealthily, Umbreon was the first to enter the space where she and Gary often haphazardly tucked themselves in for a night’s rest, bounding into the mess of navy sheets and head only emerging from the cocoon to watch the youngest Oak curiously.
She was just so endearing, his moonlight Pokemon that he’d raised from childhood, but the forest green eyes of Gary told Umbreon all she needed to know. He was still on a mission to locate his elusive message sender. And ironically, stuck to his dark type’s only visible, ringed ear was a square of purple that was most certainly targeted at him. Chuckling and pulling the unnoticed Post-It from her, Gary kissed Umbreon’s head affectionately and read treasure map for further detail.
Look out your window. I’ll be waiting there.
Glancing out into the forest of his town’s namesake, the fading light was giving it a more ominous feel. He knew how much Misty hated the dark, especially where bug Pokemon resided so he gave a good natured sigh as he unhinged the lock of his wide window. In a moment, Umbreon was on her feet on the bed, bundle of blankets still enveloping her frame as she yipped her question.
“Umbre, Bre Eon, Breon?” Turning to her, the former researcher smiled.
“I’m going to bring Misty home. Looks like she’s waiting for me out there. But you stay and keep the bed toasty, I’ll be quick as a Rapidash and be back before you know it, with our crazy firecracker.” At Gary’s wink, his companion nodded in understanding and snuggled within the sheets once more, the only recognizable feature being her glowing ruby eyes within the darkness of the comforter.
Through the open window, the Viridian Gym leader called forth Arcanine from his Pokeball in a flash of bright light and followed suit. Landing on the awaiting pillow of ivory and pumpkin fur with practiced expertise, Arcanine growled as to where they were headed when his master was settled.
“Hey buddy. Do you think you could sniff out Misty for me? She's waiting in the forest.” An agreeable rumble released as the fire Pokemon’s massive nose stretched upwards, breathing in the sweet air. When something registered in the dog’s sensitive palette, he shot forward like a bullet, racing through the foliage and down an unknown path that was certainly leading to his spunky girlfriend. And suddenly, Arcanine howled and skidded to a halt, almost sending the tall brunette off his back and face first into the forest floor. Amidst the birch and maple trees, there appeared nothing in motion and the trainer was about to question his transportation’s judgement when something floated down into his cargo pant clad lap. Another purple note.
And as his gaze lifted, Gary was met with the ethereal sight of a girl dressed in jean shorts and a white and blue windbreaker sitting in the branches above him, waving at his awed expression. Her features, those pixie pink lips curved in a precious smile and her vivid aqua eyes creased in happiness were only slightly obscured by the ginger fringe silhouetting her heart shaped face. She was the portrait of perfection as his name fell from her lips.
“Gary!” she said, motioning for him with her lithe hands.“I was starting to wonder if you’d gone out or something. It’s getting pretty late. Come up!” Being the obedient boyfriend that he was, Gary recalled his Legendary Pokemon to instead release his elegant bird Pokemon Pidgeot and wordlessly motioned for his friend to take him up to where Misty resided. Happy to oblige, Pigeot elegantly swooped his trainer onto his back and with three subsequent beats of his wings the brunette was airborne before the red headed girl. Though completely unintentional, the youngest Oak was perched on his bird Pokemon in a pose that oozed charismatic, so it naturally came to him to turn on his flirt.
“Well hello there Miss. I’ve been trying you track you down all evening.” From his pocket, he freed the collection of purple sticky notes he’d been guided with, and waved them like a fan. “Good thing a little Spearow was helping me out.” Inserted was the classic Gary wink here. The addressed female gave him a giggle while signaling for him to join her.
“Oh? Well isn’t that little one lucky. Say, how do you thank your helpers?” As if waiting for that cue, the tall brunette jumped onto the thick branch Misty was balanced on, and smoothly slipped his arm around her shoulder. Seeing his mission was complete for the moment, the elegant bird Pokemon left his master be and flew higher into the maple tree to nap. Gary, meanwhile, was getting unreasonably close to a certain cerulean eyed girl’s mouth.
“Hm, usually like this,” was his whisper before their lips connected in a delicate kiss. His other hand slide behind her to the small of her back in order to deepen their lip lock, but the windbreaker clad girl used her own hands, which had landed on her boyfriend’s toned chest, to push him back slightly. When he glanced down at her in worried confusion, she bit her lip cutely.
“As much as I’ve waited all week for that, we’re here for a reason lover boy,” she teased easily. Flicking her head to the side, the youngest Oak let his eyes scan over the summer sunset, rich hues of amethyst overtaking the fading rose and tangerine. Obviously that wasn’t what had elicited this adventure, however. The strange glittering flash of blue streaking across the sky caught his attention amongst the beautiful scenery.
“Misty, what is that?” he questioned, releasing her from his tight hold to turn and extend his neck outward to catch a better view. The ginger haired girl instinctively clasped onto his forearm, making sure he was steady on their branch, before answering.
“Keep watching.” It was an easy enough order, considering the enthralling manner with which the creature was circling the sky above. Its figure eights were getting wider, and Gary’s viridian eyes were catching clearer and clearer focus of it. It was some sort of bird Pokemon, shiny and blue in color, twirling in elongated, elegant strides in the distance. There were long tail feathers, a huge wing span, a sparkling body . . .
“Is that . . . Articuno?” he scrutinized, mouth dropping open is sheer disbelief. His speedy back and forths were almost above them now, and Gary didn’t need a verbal acceding to know that this was a creature of myth that he’d read about many a time.
“Yup. And the finale is coming up,” his girlfriend said happily, tucking her head into his shoulder crook to watch the phenomenon with him. In less than a minute, along the path the ice bird had created resulted in a mass of crystal shards erupting from the airspace and raining down on the forest below. It astonished Gary as little pearlescent gems were falling like snow around them, but Misty relished in his shocked features and the way he huddled her into him comfortably.
“Do you like it?” At his distracted nod she continued. “He’s been doing this every couple of days. I was caught in one of these myself last month and kept coming back to see if it would happen again.” Turning to kiss his exposed neck, the youngest Waterflower smiled into the skin there when she heard him hum in approval.
“Huh, you don’t say . . .” he pondered as he reciprocated the touch with a kiss to her crown. “I wonder if it’s some ecosystem balance he’s upkeeping or-” at her amused chuckle he stopped his rant. “Hehe, thanks Mist, this was sweet of you.” Sticking a hand in his pocket, he felt the collection of Post-Its that had led him here and pecked her head again as they continued to sit amongst the shower of shards.
“Anything for you Gary.”