Chapter 1 - Letters and Numbers
Cold. Very cold. And it's getting colder. What is this? The bed is supposed to be warm. Wait. There's another sensation. Wet. Cold and wet. Oh Arceus!
"Wake up m'boy! Ya mus'nt let this sunlight go 'ta waste." a stiff voice explodes from the corner of the room. Jeff opens his eyes and stares in a mixture of disbelief and horror at the pile of frozen Magikarp lying on top of his covers. The weight of the frozen fish pins Jeff's legs, making it difficult to get up. Jeff manages to free himself after a bit of struggling, slowly propping himself up against the edge of the bed.
"Hurry up! The mailman has some sorta strange package 'ya need 'ta sign for." Jeff looks at his cranky old man standing in the doorway of his room, carrying an empty pail that shows signs of once containing icy cold Magikarp. Jeff contemplates throwing one of them back at the old man's head and seeing if it'll then land inside the bucket, but opts against doing so.
Life has been hard since his older sister left six years ago. The old man always focused on keeping the family farm going that he rarely had time to look after his kids. It had always been Lily who made sure that he took his baths, that he was fed, and that he went to school. Then one day, she disappeared with nary a word. The old man figured she had finally left to fulfill her dreams, which she had put off for so long so that she could take care of her younger brother.
"Tell the mailman to just leave it at the front door."
"No can do. It's from 'yer sister." The old man wears an unusually serious expression. He looks away from Jeff and closes the door behind him softly, before softly talking through the door, "And I'd hurry, too. Took ten minutes 'ta wake 'ya up."
A quick visit to his small wooden wardrobe, and Jeff takes quick glance at his room. A small, creaky wooden attic filled with antique wooden furniture. He never had anything too new, beyond the few scattered posters that he hung on the walls. Pretty much everything was a hand-me-down, and with one last sigh he affixed the last button on his shirt and headed down to meet the parcel carrier at the front door.
Normally, a postman wears khaki shorts, a tidy baby blue shirt with a patch on it, a logo emblazoned hat, and they carry a clip board with a pen attached. Emphasis on normally. Standing before Jeff was a pathetic excuse for a postman. Muddy slacks, a dark brown coat of some kind that once was white, and fractured glasses. The only thing that looks immaculate is the package she is carrying.
"Ah, Jeff? I have a package for you that we received over at the lab." The girl hands the package over to Jeff. It's not particularly big; maybe big enough to carry a few books, though it was too light to contain that. Truthfully Jeff was less focused on the package than at the dirty lab assistant that got assigned mail delivery duty for Professor Fir.
"So, uh... the Professor ships with brown?" The assistant gives a murderous glare at Jeff. If looks could speak a thousand words, half of them would be synonyms for dismemberment.
"No. Some maniac on a tractor nearly ran me over on my way here, so I had to jump into a water-filled ditch." She removes her glasses and tries wiping them clean with her labcoat, but the mud on the coat only makes it worse.
"So you met my father then..." Jeff trails off once he notices the assistant's expression go from homicidal to globicidal. Clearly this is a woman who enjoys order and perfection, and mud isn't known for being well ordered. Jeff turns around to head back inside, and decides the fan the flames one last time: "Oh yea, the water around here is probably tainted with manure." With a quick swat, the door closes behind him, which does nothing to muffle the angered screams of a wailing banshee.
Utilizing the sole table available to him downstairs, Jeff plops the package down. On closer examination, it was fairly nondescript. Standard brown cardboard box, with the only distinguishing feature being his sister's handwriting listing his address. No return address was available though. With the care of a five-year-old opening presents on Christmas morning, Jeff attacks the package to get at the contents inside. Five Poké Balls, two Premiere Balls, a few random items, and a letter.
Hey, it's been an awfully long time since we last spoke. I bet you have lots of questions you want to ask your dear ol' sis, but just know that I am doing fine. Better than fine, in fact. I've had lots of amazing adventures, and I just started a new job a few weeks ago.
Cutting to the chase: Leave Littleroot Town. I've provided some items to help you get started on your adventure, and I've even included two Pokémon for you to use. Don't worry too much about father, he's tougher than a sturdy Aron.
By the way, do you know how to catch a Pokémon? If you weaken a Pokémon first, or inflict a status on it, they become easier to catch. You can also ...
Jeff crumpled up the letter and threw it away. The rest of the letter was tutorials on stuff that he already knew.
Grabbing his pokéPhone, Jeff scans the two Premiere Balls. Technology really is incredible. Phones are capable of doing so much these days. They can check on the condition of your Pokénon, check your PC remotely, and even allow you to communicate and trade with trainers far away. Jeff's pokéPhone is the one item that Lily left for him before she left. It's a bit old, but it still works just as well as the newer ones.
"Scanning ... Ralts ... Psychic/Fairy typing ... Male ... Level 5 ... Telepathy ability ... Timid nature ... IV spread is perfect ... EV spread is ideal for special sweeper ... Checking Bulbapedia™ database ..." The one downside of having an old pokéPhone is that it is slower. It does have quick access to the Bulbapedia™ database, which replaced the Pokédex system many years prior. It democratized the ability to research Pokémon, and no longer required that each individual user had seen them previously in order to have information about them.
"Rattata... Normal typing... Male... Level 5 ... Run Away ability... Adamant nature ... F.E.A.R. enabled ... Focus Band equipped ... Checking Bulbapedia™ database ..."
Jeff looks curiously at the two Premier Balls. Lily sent him two Pokémon: A fairly respectable special attacker, and a gimmicky rat. To top it off, the rat doesn't even have its ideal item but one that requires an element of luck. Jeff takes a deep breath, and puts the items in his bag. He glances around the house once more, and walks to the doorway and grabs his cap from the coatrack near the door.
"All boys leave home someday..." Jeff quietly mouths as he leaves, being careful to close the door behind him.