Lots of chapters. You'd better get cracking.
TABLE OF CONTENTS:
Field Research, chapter 1 (prologue):
Pewter City, Kanto. The grayest, dullest town in the world. It's a town that prides itself on its stones; in fact, the town's motto is the "Stone Gray City". It used to be a mining town, that is, until fossils and asteroids were found in Mt. Moon just to the east. Really, the only impressive parts of the town are the Natural History Museum, which consists of seven fossils, and the gym, which swaps hands a few times each year. Very few things ever happen there. The most popular gossip of the day was, as always, how the current gym leader (currently an old man named Jason) was planning to leave Pewter and go to a currently vacant gym somewhere else, in a more pleasant city.
That's of no consequence, of course. Pewter goes through gym leaders like lightbulbs. One stays around for a few years, until it can't stand working in such a dull place. A lightbulb will die out, but the gym leader has the pleasant choice of just packing up and leaving. There is a small market street, though, where almost everyone works in the generically labeled stores- "Fresh Fruit" had gone out of business the week this story begins, and it had been quickly replaced by another store with the same name. This story begins outside of a store that had just had a layoff, in true Pewter style. Things will change rapidly, but everything seems to stay the same. The store, generically named Pokémon Market, was a place where travelling trainers would buy medicines and food for their Pokémon, had received a series of complaints that their store workers had no idea of the difference between a FullHeal and a FullRestore, which is apparently very important. The truth is, Ken Russel didn't even care all that much.
Ken Russel had dark brown hair and gray eyes, but that was hardly his most distinctive trait. The first thing most people noticed about him was his nose- it was crooked and misshapen, a result of it being broken several times. Like all lazy people, Ken liked to spend most of the day out of his head. That's not to say he was brainless, he had a very quick mind. His wandering mind caused him to get poor grades in school, so he wasn't able to get into any colleges. He thought about going to community college, but he never really went through with the idea. He was as unnatural as a normal person can be.
His boss was not very happy when he sold several trainers something that they weren't asking for. After this happened a few times, his boss told him he was being demoted to janitorial work. Ken Russel, who didn't much like the idea of working harder for less pay, suggested something else his boss could do with a mop. Ken thought it was mighty clever, but his boss was not amused by Ken's wit. Ken lost his job, and was lurking Market Street hoping to see a sign in a window that read "HELP WANTED". He only managed to find one such sign, and that was in the window of the Pokémon Market.
This was a very bad time to lose a job, at least for Ken Russel. Like most people living in Pewter, he shared an apartment with a friend- a tall, bony daydreamer with shoulder length unkempt strikingly blond hair. Justin Sanson looks more like a mop than anything else, Ken thought as he looked in a restaurant, which was aptly named Pasta.
That thought led to the memory of his remark to his former boss. He laughed for a second, which startled an old woman who was walking near him on the street. She gave him a strange look- How could some barely graduated kid be chuckling to himself in the dullest town in Kanto? Ken didn't notice this, he was worried about how he would pay the rent and get food.
His roommate was recently given the sack as well, and unemployment wasn't a very good thing if you have rent to pay. He quickly ran some figures through his head- he had just enough money for two nights of food for himself. Justin had less money than Ken, which meant they had maybe one night total. They had some food in the refrigerator, but- No, there was a power outage the night before and the refrigerator was left open. They had some ramen in the pantry, but a few days of noodles and a night of cheap food was not going to be very good. Ken started to think that his witty comment to his boss wasn't so funny anymore.
He decided to go back to the apartment. Justin was gone for the day, so Ken had a while to think up plans to make money. This was not going to be a very good week.