Chapter 6: Accidents
....I was smothered in endless darkness as I kept running further and further, trying to get away. No matter how fast I was, it was faster. I looked behind me, but the blood red silhouette still crept closer; its twisted black smile growing bigger each second.
A whisper came from behind me, "Your fault....."
I shut my eyes tight and kept on running. The voice came back again, taunting me, "Your fault... Your fault...!"
More and more hushed tones joined in, surrounding me as they repeated those words over and over, each time getting gradually louder. Soon my head felt like it was about to split open from the sound of thousands of voices screaming at me. I collapsed to my knees, sobbing and clenching my head inbetween my legs.
"Please s-stop... STOP IT!!"
And just like that, there was silence. Instead of darkness, everything around me was now white. For just a moment I was relieved...
I felt something on my hands and looked down.
I shot up out of bed, breathing heavily as sweat dripped down my face. I slowly and fearfully looked down at my shaking hands. A breath of relief escaped me after seeing nothing on them. Looking around at the Pokemon Center walls and the team below me, all sleeping soundly, I remembered last night when we arrived at Floaroma town. As I swept the messy hair out of my face, I sighed and flopped back down on the bed.
"Crazy dream..." I told myself as I shut my eyes and drifted back to sleep.
. . .Hey, wake up already!!"
I groaned and slowly opened my eyes to find Andrea just inches away from my face. I stared at her for a moment before I turned to lie on my other side.
She growled at me, "I said, wake... up!!"
I suddenly felt cold as Andrea yanked the covers away. I sat up in bed, glaring down at her.
"Hey!! Give it back!"
"Oh, come on...!" She whined, spitting the blanket out of her mouth. "Didn't you say yourself we needed to catch up with Trevor? How are we gonna do that if you're wasting time sleeping in? Not to mention Gloria still needs training, and-"
"Alright, alright, I'll get ready, okay? Jeez, you sound like my mom..."
Andrea sighed as I stretched my arms and sat on the edge of the bed.
"So you finally got the Snorlax out of bed, huh?" Tyler said to Andrea with a smirk on his face. As he looked up at me, his smug expression vanished, "Yeesh, for all that extra sleep you got, you look terrible."
I shot him a glare. "Gee, thanks ."
Andrea looked up at me as well, looking a bit concerned. "Seriously though, did you sleep okay last night?"
I opened my mouth hesitantly, remembering the nightmare, but then shut it and stayed silent for just a second. I wouldn't want anyone to worry about me... It was just a dream anyway.
"..Yeah, I slept fine! Maybe I'm just a little tired from the past few days... Training you guys that much for Roark wasn't just a walk in the park!" I replied with a forced smile.
"Well, you'd better get used to it," Andrea smirked, "Because we still have seven more gym leaders to go!"
I nodded. "Right, right...! Well, gimme a few minutes to get ready guys, and then we'll get the day started!"
I quickly got changed out of my pajamas and packed up my bag before I left the Pokemon center, ready to move forward. As the rest of the team came out behind me, Gloria pushed in front of everyone and beamed at the sight of Floaroma town.
"Wow...!" She gasped in awe, "It's even prettier here during the day!!"
"I don't see what's so special about it... I mean, it's just a bunch of flowers, right?" Aline said, her head tilted down to Gloria.
"Just a bunch of flowers?! Do you not see all the different kinds of blooms in these beautiful colors?"
"No, actually, I don't. Zubat are blind, remember?"
"O-oh... Right. Well, what about everyone else?"
Andrea shrugged, "It's alright I guess..."
Tyler looked all around him, "I can hardly walk without accidentally crushing something!"
Cole plucked a small flower out of the ground, staring at it before he made it burst into flames. "...Meh."
Gloria dropped her head. "Uhg... whatever." She looked up at me, "So, training starts today?"
"Yep!" I replied as I started walking. "Since Floaroma doesn't have a gym, we're gonna have to go to the next town over. There's another route on the way, I figured we could get some training there. I'm just hoping we don't run into any more trouble again."
"Who would even cause trouble in this middle-of-nowhere, prissy town anyway?" Cole questioned rhetorically.
"Team Galactic apparently..." Andrea pointed to two grunts, blocking off the bridge to the nearest route.
"Galactic?! Where??" As soon as I got sight of them I panicked and hid behind a bush, pulling everyone else with me. "Alright, I don't think they noticed me... Now let's go find another way outta here."
"Wait... I thought those guys were wimps. Why are you so scared of them now?" Tyler asked as we snuck back to Floaroma.
"I'm not scared of them, Ty. The only reason I fought with them back at Jubilife was because they were threatening to take Lucas' Dex. If they see me now, they'll probably want revenge or something, and I don't want a bunch of battles to delay me from getting to the next town."
"Well, waiting around and hiding from them is gonna delay us from getting further too ya know... And they might not be doing anything bad right now anyway!"
"Whatever, I still don't trust those dorks... And I don't want Gloria's training to be battling these guys."
"We have to get past them one way or another! What if they stick around and keep blocking the next route for days?!"
I sighed, "...Fine, I guess the only way to-"
As if on que, Trevor came sprinting up to me, lifting me up as he trapped me in his tightly-gripped hug.
"Trevor!!" I yelled angrily, "Put me down!! ...Wait, what are you doing here?"
Trevor giggled a bit as my feet returned to the ground.
"Well ya see... I got here just a few days ago actually, but these weird uniformed people have been blocking the way out since then. Apparently they're 'conducting research' there or something... It's super dumb."
"Oh great, sounds like they really are gonna stay awhile... Why didn't you try battling to get past them?"
"Because they might be way stronger than me! I don't wanna put my team in any danger!"
"Hey, I've dealt with these guys before, they're nothing to be afraid of! The only reason I haven't beaten them by now is because I already got into trouble with them once, and I don't really want to do it again... But I bet you could handle it!"
"You really think so...? I mean, last time we battled you beat me... I bet you're still stronger, to be honest."
"Even if I am, trust me when I say that these guys are weaker than both of us. I'm sure you could easily wipe the floor with them!"
"Really? Then it's time to go show those guys who's boss! I'll see ya later Maggie, okay?"
"Alright, see ya!"
Trevor waved as he ran off, energetic as always. It didn't take long for him to create a distraction, so I snuck past the Galactic members with ease. I looked behind me to make sure I wasn't being followed, then sighed in relief.
"Good, it worked...! Now, it's finally time for some training, Gloria!"
She nodded, "I'll do my best!"
We fought our way through wild pokemon as we progressed through Route 205, and before long I saw another trainer there. Just like normal, we battled once we both got sight of eachother, but what I wasn't expecting was a tough-looking Ponyta to be sent out.
"Oh jeez... Gloria, come back! Andrea, you can handle this."
She nodded, blocking Gloria from the incoming Ember. She fell back before running forward and biting Ponyta. It threw Andrea off of it and sent flames toward her again, but after taking the hit she slammed into it. One more would be able to take it down, and Andrea could easily survive another Ember. Before I had the chance to say anything, the trainer yelled, "Alright Ponyta, don't hold back! Use Tackle!!"
As it suddenly came charging towards Andrea, I knew this attack was gonna hurt. With no time to react, I just stood there, stiff with shock as it came closer. Then out of almost nowhere, a shot of water blasted Ponyta, knocking it over on its side and leaving it defeated.
"Why don't you run off and leave her alone??"
I still stood there in shock as a Buizel came out of the tall grass, revealing itself. The trainer looked at me angrily.
"Hey, it's against the rules that a wild pokemon can help you!"
Still in shock, I had to take a moment to process what just happened. "...Wild? Uh, nonononono, he's mine I can assure you! Don't you run off like that again, I was worried sick!" I tried playing it cool as I made my attempted excuses, but I knew I sounded a little nervous.
Buizel gave me a wierd look, "What? But I'm not--"
Acting on impulse, I got close and tapped him with a pokeball. "Good job out there though, uhh... Nicky! Now get back into your Pokeball to rest..!" I stared down nervously, praying that he wouldn't get out.
"Oh, sorry for assuming things, you won fair and square!" The trainer apologized as he handed me some money.
"Thanks...!" I gave a sigh of relief as "Nicky's" Pokeball stopped moving around. I picked it up along with my winnings and walked a little further down the Route before letting the Buizel out. It was clear the he was pretty pissed.
"What was that?! I saved your little Shinx over there and you repay me by lying to that kid and capturing me??"
"Why did you interrupt a trainer battle in the first place? Isn't it common knowledge that wild pokemon aren't allowed to do that?"
"Hey, I didn't see the other trainer there, alright? It's not like I can see straight through this tall, thick grass!"
I sighed, "Alright, alright, I guess you're right... I should be thanking you for helping out Andrea back there. Sorry..."
"Nah... I'm sorry too. For yellin' at you. I've honestly been waiting to join a team, and I don't think I should be giving up the opportunity lyin' right in front of me. Besides, you already kinda captured me..."
"Right..!" I said through a chuckle. "Well, I'm sure you'll make a good addition to the team, Nicky! Oh, you don't want to change your name, do you...?"
He shook his head, "Nope, Nicky will do nicely!"
"Good. Looks like we have two new members to train then!"