The sky was dimming, right on schedule, over the city. The Pokémon Centers were always open, of course. A look inside would reveal copious amounts of pink and a giant Poke Ball logo engraved on the floor. Since urgent trainers had a tendency to rush straight in with injured Pokémon, the desk was fifteen steps away from the door. Right now, with the sky dark and dull, behind the desk was a fallen nurse, eyes frozen open Backspace here. like a computer screen that had become unresponsive, with an even more unresponsive option to either wait, or to kill the pages.
A pair of Chansey had to lift the nurse and carry her into the back room, where two other nearly identical nurses rushed in to try and fix the frozen nurse. Enter key here, mate.
“Hello? Can you hear me?” Enter key here, mate.
They called out to her, they asked her questions that could be answered with an automatic recording, but the frozen nurse lied still and silent on the bed.
One of the nearly identical nurses started shaking her head. “We’ll have to restart her. I don’t know if we can soft reset.”
The other nurse gulped. “Does anyone know when she last saved?”
The nearly identical nurse shook her head. They turned to the frozen nurse and lifted up her wrist to reveal three buttons and an ID-game card barely poking out from under the skin. The other nurse tried holding down two of the buttons, but as they predicted, soft resetting did not work. When they pushed down all three, to their surprise, restarting didn’t work either.
The nearly identical nurse shuddered. “We can either pull out her game card, or we can call headquarters.”
“Or we can wait for morning. Maybe she overheated,” the other nurse suggested.
“Nurses don’t overheat!”
“I still think we should wait.”
The nearly identical nurse yelled in frustration. “We can’t just wait! I’m pulling it out!” The other nurse yelled out and tried to stop the nearly identical nurse, but she pushed her aside and grabbed the frozen nurse’s arm to pull out the little black chip. Little blue sparks zapped her fingers, and she dropped the card. She shook her slightly burnt fingers and picked up the card. “We can send this to headquarters.”
The aspie trainer and the gray-eyed girl dragged their feet on the side of Mount Silver. Snow was cutting into their faces, drawing blood from cheeks and noses. The blizzard was blinding, and the only thing guiding them was the urge to walk straight forward.
The gray-eyed girl called out to the other trainer. “Do you have your Charizard with you?”
“I have to make the trade….I’m so close,” the aspie trainer mumbled. “To answer your question though, yes.”
“So, how about it then?” the gray-eyed girl said.
“How about what?” the aspie trainer asked.
“Take out your Charizard. We’re freezing!” The gray-eyed girl looked off to the side. “Look, there’s a cave there. Let’s stay the night.” The aspie trainer started to protest, but the ice-cold gray-eyed girl had no part of it. “Oh, stop it already, we both have a radio and the thing gets a signal from the moon.” The gray-eyed girl almost grabbed his arm to drag to the cave, but she stopped herself, not wanting to in the middle of two different storms. “Come on, let’s go!” she urged.
The aspie trainer’s Charizard was the only Pokémon out of its Ball. The great dragon’s breath was visible in the cold air, and in spite of it, the dragon’s tail was burning brightly. The aspie trainer listened to the soft hum of the radio while the gray-eyed girl buried herself in a homemade blanket and dozed off. Backspace here. The sky was nearly black and the only light source was from the Charizard’s tail.
The aspie trainer held the radio to his ear, the gray-eyed girl probably thought he was listening for static; in truth he was, but it was merely a distraction from the soft, even breathing of the gray-eyed girl and the howling storm outside the cave. His heart was pounding, and he kept saving his file every five seconds. He’d save, then try to pull out his own game card, but he knew he’d black out instantly. The aspie trainer pulled out a red game card that looked like it would awkwardly stick out of the wrist. Even on the Underground Communication Network, he only heard rumors about the red game card. The aspie trainer’s body shook, and he dropped the card into his bag and saved his file for the millionth time.
"I'm so close..." he whispered to no one in particular.
A new day hopefully meant new berries. Every morning, the green-thumb gingerly watered the berry pots she had placed on the window sill. She ran a small shop on the edge of a quiet town that sold berry pots, watering pails, berries, and mulch. She didn't have her own Pokémon, but the most recurrent customers were the grass Pokémon that crawled in through the door that was always left open. She even had a little bit of medical experience to offer to the wild Pokémon. She giggled as a Bulbasaur with a polkadot kerchief timidly walked in as it did every morning. The green-thumb gently held the Bulbasaur in her arms, being mindful of its ears.
"How are you today?" she asked. "I hope you're feeling better. Are they still sore?"
She walked into the backroom and placed the Bulbasaur on a table crowded with dirt and wet clay. She rummaged through a cabinet and found a small bottle with a blue liquid. She chattered, mainly to herself about how the basics were always helpful, but sometimes they needed some help. She smiled at the Bulbasaur and leaned down to its eye level.
"Say, what happened to your eyes, Bulbasaur?" The green-thumb opened the tiny bottle and carefully tipped it into the Pokémon's mouth. "The static is getting worse, but don't worry, I've been working on something that'll get rid of it, okay?" The green-thumb picked up the Bulbasaur and walked back into the shop. She placed the Bulbasaur down and started tending to her plants. Time lazily ticked by as the Bulbasaur ran in and out the shop with other Pokémon, but somewhere along the way, the green-thumb had walked to town to stop by the postal office and picked up a relatively small package. Back at the shop, she opened the package and placed each of the red game cards into a wooden Poke Ball.
"Bulbasaur! I have another job for you!" the green thumb called out. The Pokémon jumped into her arms and let her tie a necklace with the Poke Balls around its neck. "You don't have to travel far, just take the short cut to Saffron City, okay?"
The Bulbasaur nodded and walked out the door.