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Just when Cecily thought they would be able to move on, Jackson screamed out. Immediately she was put on edge. Was he being attacked? Turning to him, she couldn’t get the best look at what was going on so she started over his way. Only moments later a yellow ball flew away from him and continued to roll on the ground a ways. The grass parted as it did so. About then the girl realized what he had stumbled upon. It was a Sandshrew just like she’d been looking for. No sooner than it ceased to roll, it popped on its feet in a defensive stance. Big blue eyes looked to and fro from Jack to Cecily. A little excited, the brunette took a step toward the pokemon.
Automatically, the little pangolin like creature took a couple of scurrying steps back. It didn’t look too keen on sticking around. She needed to act quickly if she was going to have any chance at catching this thing.
“Hey, let’s battle! If I win you join my team.” As she spoke, she pulled out a pokeball to emphasize her point. However, unfortunately, the little guy didn’t seem to like that idea. Catching sight of the red and white ball, the Sandshrew turned tail and ran back into the grass. It was tempting to follow it out, but she was hesitant now that she’d seen Jack pretty much twist his ankle in one of those holes.
Little more than a few seconds passed and the rustling of the grass stopped. She could only assume the ground type pokemon was burying his way back into their tunnel system, far away from the two humans who had intruded on his day.
Cecily’s face transformed into a pout, she was so close to getting a chance right there. But it seemed as though the time wasn’t quite right and she would have to wait a while longer before catching a cute little Sandshrew. “Well, I guess we can move on then.” She was ready to get going now so they could put this failure behind them.
Continuing along the route, there wasn’t a lot going on. It was quite, but not in an unnatural way. More like they were headed farther inland than she was used to. Normally she could always hear the sound of the waves against the beach, but it seemed to be missing now that they were out of Vermillion city. Cecily wasn’t sure whether she liked it just yet. But she was sure she would get used to it either way. If not, they would hit a check station and then the ocean again in a couple of days and she would have a reprieve from the silence. Until then the small group would be continuing through these sort of grassy lands.
“So, we never decided where we wanted to go first.” The girl mentioned it in an off-handed sort of way. “Eventually we are going to hit an intersection. If we head north we’ll run into Lavender town, south Fuchsia city. Lavender town is a lot closer, but I also hear it is pretty creepy.” Cecily wasn’t sure how she felt about making a town that was supposedly haunted their first destination, but she also didn’t want to look like a big baby. “Either one is okay by me.”
Too excited to realize he might scare off any wild pokemon with the ruckus he was causing as he ran through the grass, Jack smiled in response to Cecily's words, "They're cool and abundant. And also easy to train. Maybe if we could find one of their tunnels, we could use pokemon food to bait them." He looked excited at that prospect, not knowing if baiting would work or not except when fishing for pokemon.
He went after her back towards the pathway when she gestured for him, but continued to keep his eye out for any signs of underground tunnel entrances. The grass wasn't as thick since they were close to the city and being taller, he had a better view.
He was a little too late to notice the brown blur but, thankfully, Cecily managed to dodge what they now recognized as a raticate. He was never really a fan of that species and seeing it attack his friend only increased his aversion to it, but knowing his friend had everything in control, he waited and let her take care of the nuisance. He was positive that the raticate was no match for Cecily's Vulpix.
He stood back, watching the short and very one-sided battle and smirked as the raticate ran off and thought to himself, [i "At least that thing was smart and knew when it was out-matched."] Unlike some trainers, he did not believe that all pokemon or all species had the potential to be great and was very picky when it came to choosing pokemon. And the rattata line was one line that he was never going to touch. He also found rats to be disgusting and creepy, even if they were pokemon rats, and, since they were found everywhere and bred like rats, he figured he could use them as food for his predator-like pokemon which would prefer hunting.
Once the raticate had run off, he continued on his way towards the dirt path, grinning at Cecily all the way until suddenly one of his legs sunk into the ground, causing him to wince in pain. It was quickly followed by his loud screaming, as he pulled his foot out and shook it, trying to get rid of something brown and small that seemed to be stuck to his foot. On closer examination, it looked to be a sandshrew and it had it's teeth clamped on to Jack's foot, who had probably fallen on top of it when his leg went through the ground.
Jumping around on one foot and kicking the other, to hopefully get the sandshrew to dislodge itself, it didn't take long before the pissed off pokemon was thrown into the air, away from the male trainer, who quickly ignored it and sat down to nurse his foot. He didn't realized yet that he had unwittingly found the exact pokemon that his traveling partner had wanted, as he pulled off his shoe and socks to check for injuries. His Charmeleon quickly appeared between it's trainer and the wild sandshrew, who no longer seemed to be interested in the trainer, but the lizard pokemon still remained wary. It was obvious the sandshrew was just startled and was instinctively defending itself, and didn't seem to be the type to hold grudges or behave violently.
Not wanting to scare any pokemon away from her general vicinity, Cecily threw her hand up in thumbs up to convey her feelings of excitement for her friend. But that was for not when he came trouncing over. Oh well, the girl wasn’t having much luck anyway. “Mmmm, well I was looking for a Sandshrew, they are supposed to be pretty common in this area. But I haven’t run into any yet…” She thought it odd, but then again they were a pokemon that burrowed underground. So, they might just not be out at this time of day. “It’s no big deal. We can keep moving on. I am sure I will run into one eventually.” Kanto was full of the little pangolin pokemon and she had waited this long. It wouldn’t kill her to be patient and hold out a while more.
She started on her way back to the well-beaten dirt path, beckoning for Jackson to follow her as well. They hadn’t made it that far from Vermillion city and she wanted to make decent progress on their first day out. However, as they were reaching the edge of the grass she heard rustling. It was a hectic sound, as though something was running through the tall blades of grass. Cecily wasn’t sure what it was, but she also didn’t care to find out. However, this would be another occasion where she just wouldn’t get what she wanted.
Mere moments after catching sight of the movement she was hearing, the brunette caught a flash of light brown. She ducked just in time as an irate raticate practically flew passed her head. The creature turned midair, landing on the clear walking path and facing her. Its long, sharp teeth glistened in the light of the morning sun as it hissed. The amber-eyed girl wasn’t sure what had pissed this thing off. Maybe she had frightened one too many rattata. If that were the case this might be their parent or leader. Who knew? Either way, it was looking for a fight.
Shrugging her shoulder, Cecily prompted vulpix to jump down and face the seething opponent. She did just that, landing gracefully on the ground without a sound. The pair wasn’t the most keen about fighting, being more interested in the contest scene, however that didn’t mean they were half bad. Jackson and charmeleon needed sparing partners after all, and so she and vulpix had picked up some battle skills along the way.
“Vulpix use confuse ray!” If that hit they might just be able to sneak away instead of drawing this fight out.
The small fox pokemon was soon surrounded by glowing gold orbs, each shrouded in a purple aura. No sooner than they were all formed, she fired them off toward their enemy. Hitting the mark, Cecily watched as the large rat began looking around, unsure in what it was doing or what it should do from there. It caught sight of its tail, startling itself. Enough so that it leaned in and bit it using hyper fang. The rodent let out a screech in pain. Still failing to understand what had happened, it looked around wildly to try and find what had hurt it.
Cecily kind of felt bad for the Raticate, but she wasn’t about to let that stop her. “Alright, now ember!” Vulpix was on it in no time. A burst of flame shot from her mouth, once again hitting the target. The fire hit the rat’s fur and ran up its body. It began rolling on the ground, soon putting out the blaze. That seemed to be enough for it. Although still confused, the raticate opted to remove itself from the situation. It ran back into the grass, stumbling along the way.
“Well, hopefully it doesn’t come back… Let’s head off.” Cecily turned to Jackson with a smile. So far, things were going well.
Despite his initial hesitancy, the moment he was confronted with pokemon, Jack forgot everything else and, an excited and determined expression appeared on his face, as he stood facing the wild pidgey.
The corners of his lips curved upwards on seeing the reaction of the pidgey and he already felt that either of the two would make a great addition to his team with that attitude. He decided to wait out and let them decide who gets a shot with him, and the short battle impressed him very much. By the time the smaller pidgey won, he had already made up his mind that he was going to catch it. The other was just as impressive, but he was not the kind to have multiple of the same species, as he knew he wouldn't have the time to train them all equally. Having already planned out the pokemon he was going to capture even before starting his journey, he decided to stick to the plan unless something exceptional came about.
When the little one turned to him after beating the other pidgey, he smirked and gestured to his Charmeleon which stepped forward.
Charmeleon looked at the pidgey and snorted smoke out of his nostrils in a challenging manner and got ready to fight.
Jack whispered to Charmeleon to take it easy, realising that despite its good showing in the previous battle with its friend, the pidgey was no match for his Charmeleon who had trained extensively for three years. He knew that Cecily's Vulpix was also very strong and not many pokemon around here could pose a challenge to either of them.
He then called out to the pidgey, "You can make the first move."
The small pokemon puffed out its chest before dashing towards Charmeleon at a high speed, its body covered in white light, which Jack recognized as Quick Attack.
Jack quickly called out, "Spin and hit it on its side with your tail."
Years of training together allowed Charmeleon to recognize these unorthodox orders that his trainer tended to make and their trust in each other showed, when he followed the instructions without hesitation. In the blink of an eye, the bird pokemon was thrown into a tree with a large amount of force, getting its momentum against it.
Even after that strong hit, the bird pokemon pushed itself to its feet, not wanting to be rejected and that only impressed the young trainer more. Having already made up his mind about catching the pidgey, Jack called out one last time, "Use, Scratch!"
Charmeleon was far too quick for the young pidgey to dodge and it fell down unconscious after the last attack, which was followed by a thrown pokeball. With barely any resistance, the pidgey was caught.
Jack picked up the pokeball and whispered to it softly, "Get some rest in there. You'll become more powerful in time." He then looked to the other pidgey, "I'm sorry buddy. It seems you'll have to find another trainer. I suggest you stick close to cities or challenge passing trainers more often, and you'll be caught before you know it." He gave it a thumbs up, and then turned around to look for Cecily, having become completely lost to her presence until now. The pidgey looked a little put out, but nodded once and took off towards the city, probably because it was in more danger out here now without somebody to watch its back.
Seeing her watching them, he grinned brightly at her and held out pidgey's pokeball, "I caught it." He ran towards his friend, with his Charmeleon following behind, "Is there any particular pokemon you're looking for?"
Now that he got his first pokemon, he figured he could help Cecily get hers. He knew about her desire to capture a Dratini and, he guessed that would mean they will have to go to the Kanto Safari Zone sometime. He wasn't sure what other pokemon that she wanted.
Cecily shrugged off Jack’s concerns for the most part. They were still close to the city, so there probably wasn’t anything too dangerous in the grass. Luckily she’d been right with that assumption. Her eagerness must have worn down her friend’s nerves because he actually came out into the sea of green to investigate the pair of pidgeys. She couldn’t help but laugh lightly at his sudden change of mind.
While he was at it, the brunette went back to searching through the grass. She still had her heart set on seeing a sandshrew. Slinking about slowly, she thought it might help to try and be a little sneakier. To add to this, she called Vulpix up on her shoulder. There would be less rustling in the foliage that way.
From a distance, Cecily could hear Jack calling out to the bird pokemon. Although, she couldn’t see how they responded from where she stood. For the moment she kept her eyes trained on her childhood friend to try and discern the situation from where she stood. He was well focused on the scene in front of him and she didn’t see the pokemon flying off, so things must have been going well. At least so far.
In the small clearing, the two pidgeys looked at the dark haired boy and at one another. There was a hint of interest in their eyes. It gleamed when their gazes met. A split second after that the smaller of the two charged the other, hitting it with a tackle. The spar was initiated. Going back and forth, the two bird pokemon had a mini battle of their own to see who would challenge the trainer in front of them. They both had a drive to become stronger, and each knew that joining a capable human would lead to more challenging matches. And loftier challenges would in turn further that goal towards strength.
At the end of the small skirmish, the smaller of the two tan and brown pokemon stood forward, chest puffed proudly out. The other took flight, resting on the branch of a nearby tree. It’s beady black eyes watched from upon its perch, perhaps in hope that it might get a second chance if the human was unsatisfied with its friend.
Seeing only a single pidgey flee the scene, Cecily was excited for Jack. That meant he at least had a shot and she firmly believed that was all he needed. After all, he had trained hard with Charmeleon over these past three years just like she had with Vulpix. They were ready to finally expand their teams and move on with the grand adventure ahead of them.
With that thought, she saw a flash to the side of her. It pulled her attention away from the battle that was about to commence. She needed to be on guard, plus there was a chance it could have been something she was looking for. But unfortunately it turned out to be another Rattata. Sighing, she shooed the purple mouse off. It was happy to escape without having to worry about injury.
He chuckled softly at her statement and nodded, "They're common everywhere in Kanto and also easy to tame. I think I'll get an easy pokemon for my second," and he looked pointedly at Charmeleon. The pokemon looked away with an embarrassed expression, remembering their initial time together where he used to be far too playful and never listened to his trainer, wanting to play all the time instead of training.
Turning back to his friend, Jack added, "Pokemon who evolve in the wild are powerful, but I want to train my pokemon from their first stages." He knew that Cecily would understand where he was coming from, and that she might already have suspected he was that kind of trainer, even though he had never told her that before out loud.
Having never been out of his city before, he was even more excited by the scenery outside the city, even with the winding path, which he had heard about. He had also heard stories about people getting lost and never being found again after straying off the path and entering the tall grass and unlike his more adventurous friend, he was cautious and kept glancing around, as if expecting some dangerous pokemon to pop out of the grass at any moment.
Jack nodded eagerly when she said to start looking, but his expression quickly became filled with worry when Cecily made her way into the grass. He called out to her, "Cecily, get out of there. That's dangerous." He frantically kept looking around, trying as best as he could to see through the grass for any signs of danger, muttering a command to his pokemon, "Charmeleon, be ready to attack at any moment."
He saw a lot of rattata taking off because of his friend's intrusion and calmed down a lot, knowing that if there were rattata lazing about, there couldn't be any dangerous predator. He was a little worried by the ekans though, but as they were supposed to be shy unlike their aggressive evolved forms, he knew they would prefer to slink away than attack. But the thought of their poison did worry him, and he called out again, his voice shaking slightly with worry for his friend, "Come back. We can find pidgey in a meadow or something."
When she motioned for him instead of calling out, he guessed she might have found one or more pidgey and despite his initial fear, excitement won over and, he quickly and quietly made his way over to her with his Charmeleon following him. Once he reached the spot, he looked into the clearing as well and seeing the pidgey, he moved out into the open and called out, "Alright, you two. I'm going to capture one of you. Who is willing to fight?"
Charmeleon walked out into the clearing behind him and called out it's name, as if in challenge to the two wild bird pokemon.
Jack didn't want to break them up if neither was interested in joining a trainer, but hoped one of them would accept his challenge. All pokemon were capable of somewhat understanding human speech, while trained ones had an even greater comprehension of the human tongue, with some rare specimens even capable of speaking human language though that was mostly psychic types which communicate telepathically. Those pidgey could be siblings or a couple, so he didn't want to break them up without giving them a choice.
Also, from what he had read, some of the weaker pokemon who had a lot of predators in nature would be ready to accept being caught in order to get protection and grow stronger. Pokemon seemed to instinctively understand how pokeballs worked and seemed to have knowledge of pokemon battles that human trainers participate in which lead to pokemon growing stronger. Because of this innate knowledge, the exact opposite was also true, where powerful wild pokemon did not like being caught and could even be disobedient after getting caught, because they are already strong and could fight off most dangers in the wild, and didn't need any human help.
The farther from home they traveled, the more excited Cecily got. But with that excitement was a twinge with worry. Sure it was going to be a whole new chapter of her life, off an adventure with her best friends, but there were all sorts of terrible people in this world. It wasn’t like it used to be when kids left home at ten to see the world. Well, it was in some regions, but here in Kanto the population had jumped up a few decades back and while all the crisis that come along with it had been handled, the after effects of crime and gang activity still remained. It was a shame.
They exited the city limits and found themselves on route eleven. Jack made a point of mentioning wanting a pidgey. [b “Well, from what I hear they are pretty common on this route. If we’re real lucky you mind find a pidgeotto.”] She grinned knowing it probably wouldn’t happen, but then again he might want not even want a pre-evolved pokemon. Some trainers like to raise them all the way up from the very beginning. [b “We can start looking here pretty soon. I want to get a little farther out.”]
The path they were on was full of twists and turns; it didn’t take long for them to be out of sight of the city. On either side of the well-beaten trail there was tall grass. It came up to Cecily’s waste. No wonder people kept to the roads even if they were so winding. It must have been pretty easy to get lost in something like that. That or suck up on. She knew there were sandshrew in there too, they were notorious to digging up holes in the ground. One wrong step and you’d twist an ankle.
[b “Alright, I say we start looking!] He was right that they would be at an advantage with a flying type around. If he trained it just right they would be able to avoid all sorts of trouble.
With that she slowly made her way out into the grass. The tall emerald blades rustled as she parted them to try and see where she was stepping. Hopefully the sound wouldn’t scare off any pokemon. Although, it was said wild pokemon were quite a bit more aggressive then lab raised ones… but that was only something she’d read.
For some reason or another, Cecily was running into a whole lot of rattata and ekans. Neither of which she was particularly fond of, nor what she was looking for. Personally she was a fan of sandshew, those beady little blue eyes were too cute to pass up. But she wasn’t even finding these infamous holes in the ground she’d been told about. It was mildly frustrating. Just as she had thought through, she caught sight of a small clearing in the grass. There was a perfect view and in it she saw a couple of pidgey. Lowering down some, as to not be spotted, Cecily backed up a bit. When she thought she was far enough away, she waved over to Jackson, not making a peep. Instead she motioned over to the clearing so that he might venture that way.
It took all of Jack's self control to stay still while waiting for the door to open and his Charmeleon was no better. The duo were practically bouncing on their feet, with Charmeleon wagging its tail and the flames on it were burning at their brightest. Jack grinned down at his pokemon, trying to convey silently that it won't be long before they could leave, and it seemed like an eternity had passed before Cecily opened the door, though it had barely been a minute.
Both trainer and pokemon greeted their friend, with equally wide grins on their faces, though Charmeleon looked somewhat murderous with his large, sharp fangs showing. "Good morning. Let's go!" He grabbed her hand, ready to drag her outside, when he heard Mrs. Stern and gave her a thumbs up, "Morning, Mrs. Stern. You bet I am." He then added to save his friend from feeling embarrassed, "The only reason I haven't ran out of town yet is cause me and Cecily agreed to travel together. It's not everyday that you set out on your pokemon journey." Charmeleon jumped up and added his own bit, "Char, char!!" The pokemon loved both his and Cecily's mother, as the two women loved to spoil their pokemon.
When Vulpix appeared, the duo waved at her, "Hey, Vulpix!"
Seeing the family sharing a private moment, Jack lead his Charmeleon a little ways away and looked away. He understood how it was, as their world was very dangerous and a lot of people never make it back home alive after setting out on their journeys. He mentally vowed that he will not be among those casualties and he will make sure that all his friends make it through together.
Not just wild pokemon, but there were all sorts of criminals around and people rarely trusted strangers, so it wasn't uncommon for friends to travel together in small groups. As much as the League and the Government try to make it safe, there is only so much they can do in a world inhabited by powerful, magical creatures and evil people who can tame them. But that is exactly why being a pokemon trainer has a lot of perks and the Government gives a lot of aid to budding trainers, because unofficially, trainers play a large role in keeping their regions safe. Like the others who leave on journeys, Jack won't let the dangers of their world stop him from chasing after his dreams and he will fight against criminals to keep everyone safe.
Once Cecily and Vulpix joined them outside, he waved goodbye to Mrs. Stern. He grinned and nodded at Cecily, "Yep... I've been dying to get out of here," and then started to walk down the road, leading out of their city. He was happy that they lived in a city with a gym, because they had trainers belonging to the gyms who would keep their cities safe, so at least they won't have to worry about their families.
As they walked far enough that neither of their houses were visible any longer, he spoke, "I want to capture a Pidgey. Those can help with scouting, finding our way if we got lost and stuff."
Having woken up entirely too early and with far too much energy, Cecily was bored. This was an exciting day, one she and her vulpix had waited years for. But, due to this excitement, time was moving slowly. Opening up her bag, she went over her things one last time. Just to be sure she hadn’t forgotten to pack anything. Even those things that were easily replaced.
After a solid hour or so, Cecily’s mother, Eleanor, woke. This prompted her to bug the woman about breakfast. It helped pass the time, but also caused her mom to rope her into helping. The teen didn’t mind too much. She actually kind of enjoyed cooking, but because there was something else she wanted so badly it seemed mundane. When was Jack going to get here?! If they hadn’t already agreed to meet at her place, she would have been knocking down his door already.
After filling up Vulpix’s bowl, they all sat down to breakfast. Cecily wolfed down her food as fast as a munchlax, but stuck around to chat for a bit. Eleanor made a point of teasing her daughter who was usually much more composed than this.
It wasn’t till she heard the joyful tune of the doorbell that she hopped out of her seat. Taking her plate she ran it straight to the kitchen and rinsed it off, then she was at the door before her mom or pokemon were out of their seats. In the seconds before opening the door, Cecily took a moment to compose herself. When she was content with her composer she opened the door to reveal Jack. [b “Morning!”] Despite her attempts to look calm, her voice betrayed her with its energy.
From behind her, Eleanor called out. [b “Good morning, Jackson. Are you ready to start your journey? Cecily’s been chomping at the bit since she woke up.”] The middle-aged woman laughed as he daughter glared back at her.
About that time, Vulpix made her way over to her partner. At least she wasn’t out to embarrass Cecily to death. [b “So, are you ready to go?”] Once again the brunette’s words were more energized than she intended. The little fox like animal spoke out her name in confirmation. [b “Good, then let’s hit the road!”]
[b “Ah, ah, ah,”] it was her mother behind her. [b “You’re forgetting something.”]
Cecily blinked at the woman a moment before realizing. [b “Oh!”] She exclaimed as soon as it hit her. The amber-eyed girl ran over to her mother and gave her one final hug. [b “Bye, I’ll miss you.”] Her voice was kind of quiet as she said it.
True to her mother’s colors, she exclaimed back [b “Love you, I’ll miss you too!!!”]
Huffing up some, Cecily shot her mother an angry look before bolting out the door embarrassed. Face red she turned to Jack. [b “Alright, let’s get out of this town!”] For the first time ever, they would be able to leave the beautiful portside Vermillion city all on their own!
Jackson Montague, one among thousands like him in the world was preparing to set out on his journey to become a pokemon trainer. Humans first learned to tame pokemon thousands of years ago and in modern times, nearly everyone trained pokemon for one purpose or other. Despite humans training pokemon for numerous purposes, pokemon trainer became a term used to denote a specific group of trainers who set out on a journey to challenge the Pokemon Gyms in pursuit of the title of Pokemon Master. And that title was what Jackson aimed for, like plenty of others before him.
Having turned sixteen recently, Jackson was old enough to go on a journey, with an experienced and powerful starter pokemon by his side. Like all trainers, no matter what profession they chose, Jack received his starter, Charmander, when he was thirteen and in the three years together, both trainer and pokemon have become good friends, and grown strong together. His Charmander had evolved from the intense training in the last three years and was already a Charmeleon for a few months now, but for it to grow anymore, he will need to face stronger opponents, and that thought made both of them more eager to start on their journey.
With everything packed and ready the previous night, thanks to his mother, Jack quickly got ready and ran down the stairs, with his Charmeleon following him, both looking excited and grinning brightly. Their excitement level was high, not just because of the journey but also because they will be traveling with friends, the childhood best friend of Jack, Cecily Stern and her pokemon. Quickly finishing their breakfast and bidding goodbye to his parents, Jack and his Charmeleon darted out of the house and dashed in the direction of Cecily's home.
They reached the house within minutes and rang the doorbell, waiting excitedly for their friends.
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