Searching for Truth (Pearlshipping)
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  1. #1
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    Default Searching for Truth (Pearlshipping)

    This is a sequel to Reaching Out. I hope that you enjoy it.

    Table of Contents
    Chapter One: First Light
    Chapter Two: Ghosts of the Past
    Chapter Three: Identification
    Searching for Truth
    Rebuilding, Rebirth


    Chapter One: First Light

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    Dawn's first light slowly began to creep in through a tight gap in the curtains. It flitted across the bedroom and alighted on the bedspread. The light crawled slowly along the length of the bed, finally halting on a face obscured by mussed black hair. The figure's only reactions to the invasive light were a slight twitch of the eye, and a subtle shifting of position so that the light landed instead on the silky soft brown forelocks of the woman who lay alongside him.

    The man grumbled as the phone let loose an early ring, disturbing him from a contented sleep. It rang again, and he reached out blindly towards the phone. He lifted the receiver slightly in the midst of a third jangle, before swiftly replacing it. With a contented sigh he let his arm drop against the side of the bed and snuggled deeper under the covers, twisting slightly so that his chin rested against the woman's silky brown locks. He breathed deeply, inhaling the heady scent of her hair that always reminded him of the slightly tropical climate of her native Hoenn. Sleepily, she brushed her hair out of her eyes and looked at him with partly-closed eyes.

    "Who was on the phone?" she asked with a yawn.

    "No clue," he shrugged, allowing his fingers to ply dexterously through the folds of her long tresses. "It's too early for a phone call so I just hung up. Probably just another prank-calling kid." She yawned again and managed to drag herself into a sitting position, the pillows rumpling up behind her back.

    "Help me up?" she asked, trying to ease her bulk over the side of the bed. He caught her by the shoulder and gently turned her back until she was once again resting her head against the backboard.

    "Not a chance," he said, looking at her distended, pregnant belly with a smile. "There's only a couple of weeks until you're due, and you shouldn't overtax yourself so early when you're so tired." She opened her mouth to protest, but he forestalled her with a wave of his hand. "Besides," he continued, "I was going to make you breakfast in bed today. How does tea, toast, and hot cereal sound?" She sighed and closed her eyes.

    "That sounds wonderful," she said dreamily, relaxing against the pillows. The phone rang again as he rolled out of bed and pulled on his sleep pants and slippers. "Ignore it," she said, opening her eyes. "If it's important, they'll call back later." He smiled and walked around the bed, leaning over to give her a kiss on the cheek. He moved to the door, pausing at the opening for a brief moment to look back at his wife. Her eyes were closed once more, her arms draped protectively across her large stomach. He felt a shudder of joy at the sight of her, and the small miracle that she carried within. Quietly, he left the room and moved down the hallway of the bungalow, slipping into the kitchen. He leaned against a wall and looked out the window. The sun was still low in the horizon, the sky a pale gold wherever it's shining rays touched. The cool grass shone with an early frost, and a pair of Ledian flew swiftly around the flowerbed one last before beginning their journey south. It was a beautiful day.

    He had never felt so happy.

  2. #2
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    Here's the next installment. There are three more chapters to come, but I'll post all of those at the same time.

    Chapter Two: Ghosts of the Past


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    He carefully manoeuvred his way from the kitchen into the hall, balancing the laden try with difficulty and shaking his head as the phone rang yet again. Who on earth could be so insistent this early in the morning? he wondered. As he made his way down the hallway, the phone cut off in mid-ring and he heard his wife’s muffled voice. Hefting the tray, he sidled into the room sideways and took one look at her white face.

    “Ash, honey… It’s the morgue…” she whispered.

    The happiness he had felt earlier was abruptly siphoned away as he processed those three words through his brain over and over… The morgue… He didn’t realize when the heavy tray tumbled out of his suddenly limp grasp. He didn’t hear May’s shriek of surprise when it crashed against the ground with the sound of shattering dishes, or feel the scalding tea burn against his leg as it fell. He moved as if in a dream towards the phone, not registering the tread of broken china under his feet or the worried words of his wife. He reached out, blindly, towards the waiting phone.

    “H-hello?” he asked, his throat suddenly dry.

    “Yes; Mr. Ketchum, I presume? My name is Arata Ukiyo, and I’m an attendant here at the morgue. I’m so sorry to call at this time in the morning, but the body of a young woman was discovered on the riverbank last night and we believe that you can identify her. Can we expect you down here shortly?”

    “Um, y-yeah, I guess so. I’ve never had to identify anyone before though…”

    “It’s quite simple, Mr. Ketchum,” Mr. Ukiyo said soothingly. “We only need you to state if you know her or not. If it will help you to prepare yourself, I can give you her name now. It’s only whether you knew her or not that really matters.”

    “Please tell me,” he whispered. He heard a brief rustling of papers as Mr. Ukiyo flipped through his files, and then his voice once again on the line.

    “Her name was Dawn,” he said. Ash jerked his head backwards in surprise.

    “Dawn,” he muttered darkly, before returning his attention to the conversation at hand. “Thank you, Mr. Ukiyo, I’ll be at the morgue soon,” he said, hanging up the phone before the attendant had a chance to respond.

    He stared into space for a moment. The despair that he had felt from the moment that May had told him it was the morgue had already vanished. Instead of despair, he felt his heart fill with a kind of savage glee. The emotion surprised him momentarily, but as dark memories of the past began to flood his consciousness he felt more and more glad by the news.

    “Ash?” May asked, but he didn’t hear her.

    “So she’s dead,” he muttered, “gone from my life forever.” He paused, trying to sum up his emotions. “Good riddance,” he spat.

    “Ash!” May snapped, jerking him out of his thoughts. He turned and looked at her, a hard expression on his face. He was surprised to see a worried expression on her face. “Who was she, and what did she do to you?” May asked softly. “I’ve never seen you so filled with hate.” Ash gazed into her cool, sapphire eyes for a moment, allowing them to relax him briefly.

    “She was a Coordinator from Twinleaf Town,” he said monotonously, turning away from her face. “I met her when I first travelled into Sinnoh, only a few days after you left for Johto. She was a fun kid, and she had lots of energy. She was like a little sister to me. She supported me in my Gyms, and I did the same in her Contests.” He paused for a moment. “And then things changed.”

    “I had a rival, Paul. He was the most arrogant person that I ever met. He was very harsh when he trained his Pokemon, and he claimed that it was because they wanted it that way. His favourite technique was to get five of his Pokemon attack his sixth at the same time. He said it made their attacks stronger, having to dodge or counter five attacks instead of just one.”

    “He sounds awful,” May murmured.

    “He was nasty towards me, always calling me pathetic,” Ash continued. “He wasn’t as bad with Dawn, although he still hurt her feelings on some occasions. For some reason he really respected Brock; maybe it was because he used to be a Gym Leader, I don’t know. Thing is, after a couple of months Dawn began to change when she was around him.

    “It started out with little things. When he insulted me, Dawn didn’t get back in his face like she used to. Once, we challenged a Gym at the same time, and she just watched him battle. The next time that happened, she cheered for him. It came to a head one day when I battled against Paul in the countryside. Dawn took his side, over mine. I was hurt, and didn’t speak to her for the rest of the day. When Brock and I woke up the next morning, she was gone. The only thing that she left was a note saying that she had fallen in love with Paul, and she was going to spend the rest of her life with him.

    “I never saw her again.”

    “Oh, Honey,” May sympathized, squeezing his hand.

    “For some reason, she decided to keep in contact with Brock. After Sinnoh, when he went back to the Gym, he got a letter from her. She wrote to him every couple of weeks. I never got any mail, even though I tried to get back in touch with her through her mother. I got tired of it eventually, and just stopped trying.”

    “What did you do then?” May asked.

    “I wanted to know what she and Brock were talking about,” Ash answered. “He’d kept all of her letters, so while he was out one day I went into his room and read them.” He shook his head in disgust. “By the time she was twelve, she was pregnant. She couldn’t handle it, so she went and had an abortion; Paul never found out about that. When Johanna, her mother, was sick with cancer, Dawn didn’t even visit once. Johanna died without seeing her daughter.

    “And then, a couple of years ago, she killed Paul. She hit him over the head with a frozen Farfetch’d and broke his skull.”

    May’s hands flew to her mouth. “That’s awful.”

    “No kidding. There was a criminal trial of course, but somehow she managed to walk away without penalty. Brock was her key character witness.”

    “And that’s why you two have fallen out of contact,” May realized.

    “Yep. Make no mistake, I hated Paul. I hated who he was, and how he treated his Pokemon. But nobody deserves to die like that, hit over the head by a frozen bird.” He sighed. “I just can’t understand how he could take the side of a killer.”

    “I’m sure he had his reasons,” May said softly.

    “After all that happened,” Ash continued, ignoring her, “all of her Pokemon left her, even her starter. Some went back into the wilderness; Prinplup was adopted by Brock’s mother, and her Pachirisu by Brock. Her Buneary and Ambipom decided to come and find me.”

    “And after all of that, now she’s dead,” May concluded.

    “Now she’s dead,” Ash agreed, “and you can see why it’s no small happiness to me that she’s gone. She betrayed her friends, her family, and her Pokemon.”

  3. #3
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    ...I'm sorry. I was into it, but when I got to how she killed Paul...yeah, that was...I mean you *could* kill someone that way, but it sounds incredibly silly.

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    Yeah, I admit the frozen Farfetch'd seems a little silly in hindsight, but I put it in as a deliberate homage to Roald Dahl's short story, Lamb to the Slaughter (one of my favourite short stories).

    Chapter Three: Identification


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    He raised his arm to knock on the door, but paused. He swallowed nervously and closed his eyes for a moment. Even though she was gone, he hated Dawn. He hated her for what she had to done to her family, her friends, and her Pokemon. But although he was glad that she would never cause harm or trouble to any more people, beneath his wrath a small prick of sympathy and affection remained for his fallen friend. No matter how much he inwardly raged at her past actions, he didn’t want to see her lifeless, unmoving body outstretched on that cold, steel table in a clean, white body bag.

    He opened his eyes, trying to banish the demons from the past that kept flitting to the forefront of his mind. Unbidden images stole into his mind’s eye. Running past a frightened girl in a pink skirt, distracting Team Rocket from attacking her with a tentacled machine… Comforting her after a devastating Contest loss… Running up a long, winding staircase with her at his side, both desperately trying to reach the top and stop the mad battle of two legendary Pokemon… trading her his Aipom for her Buizel, a trade that they had thought marked a true, unshakeable friendship…

    Darker memories began to pour in, and though he tried his hardest to tear his gaze away from those nightmares, he couldn’t avoid seeing his past. An exclamation of delight when a Magmar’s Fire Punch collided with Staravia… a heated argument, leading to his sleeping in the next field over… a sharp slap colliding with his face that seemed to resonate within the woods… shouting that made even Pikachu run for cover, flying flecks of spittle landing on both their faces… waking up one morning to discover that she, along with her tent and sleeping bag, had vanished during the night, leaving only a short note weighted down with rocks; the only sign that Dawn had ever existed as a member of their travelling group…

    The memories, both good and bad, flooded his consciousness until at last, eventually, they vanished, leaving him standing alone on the doorstep, white and shaking, as a cruel breeze whistled around his body. He had tried for years to forget that past, but he realized now that it was time to confront his demons. He couldn’t hide forever; he had run, and the past had caught him. Now he had to put it behind him forever, and if the only way to do that was to see her dead body gazing emptily towards the ceiling, then so be it.

    He raised his hand firmly and knocked on the door twice.

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    “In here, sir,” Arata Ukiyo gestured, unlocking an old, metal door to their left. Ash followed him inside and gazed around the large, dark room with sadness. His eyes alighted on a dark mass at the centre of the room, and when Ukiyo flicked on the lights he saw that it was a white body bag resting on a long, stainless steel table.

    He approached slowly, nervously, trying to brace himself for what he knew was next. Ukiyo moved to one side of the body bag and rested his hands on the zipper. He looked up at Ash, compassion in his eyes as he asked the next question.

    “Are you ready, Mr. Ketchum?”

    Ash took a deep breath, trying to fight down the inner terror that was rising within him. Nodding, he steeled himself for what was to come.

    “Yes,” he said.

    Ukiyo grasped the zipper and drew it swiftly downwards, stopping when her head and neck was uncovered. Ash gazed down at the dead girl and felt something within him break. Tears began leaking out from the corners of his eyes as he saw her familiar blue hair, her empty blue eyes. Despite himself, he almost smiled as he looked down on her. Even in the moment of her death, she was smiling the familiar grin that rarely left her face.

    “Do you know this person?” Ukiyo asked softly. Ash looked down on her a moment more before responding.

    “Yes.”

    “Can you identify her for the purpose of a death certificate?”

    “Yes,“ he said. “Her name was Dawn Gold.”

  5. #5
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    Chapter Four: Searching for Truth

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    “Thank you, Mr. Ketchum,” Arata Ukiyo said with a sigh. He looked at Ash for a moment, ready to escort him out.

    “How?” Ash asked hoarsely. Ukiyo looked at him, puzzled.

    “I told you on the phone,” he said, glancing down at the dead girl. “She drowned. We’re lucky that she washed up on the banks. A couple more hours in the water and her features would have bloated. We’d have had to identify her through her teeth.” He took one look at Ash’s heaving chest and immediately regretted his words.

    “Oh, I’m so sorry, sir,” he offered. “I don’t know what I was thinking; I can’t imagine how hard it is to lose a friend this way.”

    “She… wasn’t my friend,” Ash replied quietly. “And I meant how… how did you know to contact me?”

    “She had a bag tied to her waist,” Ukiyo answered. “It was waterproof, and we opened it to see if she had any identification in there. The only thing that we found was a note addressed to you. My assistant checked the Town Records to see if you lived in the vicinity, and when we found your number I called you.”

    “A note…” Ash muttered, shaking his head at the irony. “She let us know by a note the first time too” He sighed and looked up at the ceiling. “You never can escape the past,” he mused.

    “Sir,” Ukiyo said hesitantly. “We didn’t dispose of the note. Since it was addressed to you, we felt it would be wrong if you didn’t have the chance to read it. We put it in the next room, along with her shoes and hat. Would you like me to..?” Ash sighed again.

    “What choice do I have?” he asked. “If she left me a note, she obviously wants me to read it.” Ukiyo nodded and slipped into the next room, quickly returning with an envelope in his hand. He handed it to Ash and patted him gently on the back once, just once. He silently left the room, leaving Ash alone with the corpse.

    He turned the envelope over and saw his name written on the front, each letter painstakingly crafted in Dawn’s calligraphy. He turned the envelope around again and slit it open gently. Looking briefly at the body of the girl who had written it, he slid out several sheets of thin paper. He unfolded them and began to read.

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Ash…

    If you’re reading this, then it probably means that I’m dead. To be honest, I’m surprised that I’ve lived long enough to write this note. Looking back at my life, sometimes it feels as if everything that I’ve done has been a mistake.

    One of my biggest mistakes was in not replying to your letters. They were all delivered safely, but at the time I just couldn’t bear to try and keep in touch with you, not after what had happened. By the time I felt ready to write back, it was too late; your last letter to me made that very clear. Maybe if I’d written back to you sooner things would be different, but I’ve always had the feeling that nothing much would change about the way my life turned out.

    There is something I have to tell you that I have kept a secret from all but one. From the moment that I met you, I knew you were somebody special. It didn’t take me long to realize that I’d fallen in love with you. Yes, Ash, I loved you; I still do. From the moment that I saw you risking your life to try and save Pikachu, to now as I write this letter, I have yearned for you with all that my heart has to offer.

    I knew from the start that it would only lead to unhappiness, too. I don’t know if you were aware of it, but I could see that your heart was already given to somebody else. I knew that you would never love me in the same way that I do you, but I had to try and win your heart away. At one point I even thought about leaving you and Brock to travel on my own. It was painful being with you, knowing that you would never reciprocate my feelings. But not being with you would have been even more painful.

    Although I am ashamed to admit it, I tried everything I could think of to win your heart, but nothing seemed to work. At the end, desperate, I tried to make you jealous by cheering for Paul. I thought it had worked at first, but then I realized that you weren’t jealous because I was cheering for him; you were angry that I was supporting your enemy. I regret that moment more than anything else in my life. Every waking moment of every day after that, you were cold to me. I knew that you thought I had betrayed you, and I knew that I had brought it on myself, but my competitive side wouldn’t let me back down in arguments. I know that it’s years too late, but I am sorry that I slapped you all that time ago.

    One night, a few days before I left you and Brock, I left the Pokemon Centre for some fresh air. I was standing outside the doors when Paul and his Tropius surprised me. He said that I was looking very sad, so he showed me his Tropius’s Sweet Scent to try and cheer me up. I suddenly felt really calm and happy, and then he told me that he loved me. I know now that he didn’t love me; he saw a weakness in you, his rival, and did everything that he could to exploit it; namely getting me to leave you and travel with him. He saw a girl who was sick for lack of love, and used Sweet Scent and his sickly charm to exploit that illness.

    The day I left, the two of you battled and his Tropius ended up winning. I should have realized why he used Sweet Scent during the battle, but I didn’t. It enchanted me for the rest of the day, and I could only see your apparent rejection in contrast to his supposed love. So I left. When Sweet Scent finally wore off I realized what had happened, but it was too late; I had already left the two of you behind, and I knew that I could never go back. I didn’t want to travel with Paul, but what choice did I have?

    I’m sure you heard from Brock about some of the things that happened to me as time went on; when I was 12, I was pregnant. It wasn’t from anything that I did willingly. I woke up one night screaming in pain. I was confused, and then a hand clamped on my mouth and pushed my head down. I realized then that Paul was raping me. It happened several times, and I couldn’t do anything to stop it. Eventually my stomach started to swell, and I realized that I was pregnant before I’d even had my first period. I thought about having an abortion, but I couldn’t bear to do that. It didn’t matter in the end; my body couldn’t handle the baby inside, and I miscarried.

    I don’t want you to think that I didn’t care about my mother’s death either. By that time Paul had retired and bought a house, and I moved in with him. I hated him more than anything, but I had no other place I could go to. I was sure that my mother had heard of my “betrayal”, and I was afraid she would disown me; both Zoey and Kenny had when they found out. Paul was the one who got the letters from you and Brock telling me about her cancer. He hid them and never told me about it. I didn’t find out she had died until after the funeral, when I found one of the letters in his desk. He was out at the time, so I started to make dinner.

    When he came in, I confronted him about it. His only answer was a slap to my face. Then he started beating me, shouting that he’d done so much for me, and that I never did anything in return. When I heard that, I just snapped and grabbed the Farfetch’d I’d taken out of the freezer to thaw. I just wanted to protect myself and try to get away. I didn’t mean to swing the bird so hard; I didn’t want it to hit him in the head. I just wanted to escape. He hit the ground and didn’t move. All of my Pokemon ran in from the backyard and saw him lying in a pool of blood, and the smashed Farfetch’d in my hand. They all thought I’d murdered him in cold blood. None of them, not even Prinplup, wanted anything to do with me after that.

    Through everything that had happened to me, good and bad, my Pokemon had stayed by my side, supporting and comforting me. I had never truly been alone before. When they left, I learned what it was like to be all alone in the world. I had no friends and no family left. I lost the will to live. If it wasn’t for Brock during my trial, I would have lost my case. I know that you didn’t go, and I can’t blame you for it. Brock was the only person who had kept in contact with me. He was the only one who knew what I had gone through with Paul. He came up for a surprise visit once, before Paul died. I told him about everything, including my love for you. He understood, too. He was able to tell the jury everything that Paul had done to me, and they acquitted me under a charge of self-defence.

    Ash, I know that you haven’t spoken to him since he testified. Please, don’t hold it against him. During the trial, I didn’t care if I was found innocent or guilty. I only wanted it all to be over. Brock was a true friend. He stood by me, arguing my innocence for all his worth. All he wanted was for the truth to be heard. You probably thought he was taking the side of the murderer, not the victim. That wasn’t the case.

    It took me a long time, but I finally managed to find out your address. I’ve been travelling through the country to reach you for a long time. Every time I fall asleep, I relive my past. I have no will to eat, or to drink. I don’t even feel warmth or cold anymore. The only thing that’s driving me on is the need to get this message to you; to see your face for one last time. If I can do that, I will be able to die happy. I have never stopped loving you, and I never will.

    Love,

    Dawn


    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Ash lowered the last page of the letter. His arms shook with grief, and his eyes shone with unshed tears. Only now, when it was too late, did he finally know the truth.

    “Oh Dawn…” he whispered. “All of these years… you loved me and you never said anything. All of those fights we had… all of that pain… years of anguish and torment. Why couldn’t you tell me? Why?”

    Slowly, he moved forwards and looked down on the face of the girl who had loved him; who he knew loved him still. He unzipped the remainder of the bag and clasped one of her cold hands in his. His eyes sought out the small smile on her face, and he felt a sudden surge of emotion. This time, he didn’t try to hold it back. The tears surged from his eyes, splashing down his arms and onto her chest.

    “I’m sorry Dawn,” he sobbed. “I’m so sorry that I didn’t understand.”

    He stayed that way until his tears were exhausted. He looked away from her, took a deep, shuddering breath, and regained his composure.

    “At least… at least you died happy, even without seeing me again,” he said softly, his voice quavering slightly as he traced the outline of her smile. He leaned forwards and gently kissed his dead friend on the lips. Straightening slowly, he took one last look at her and began walking towards the door, folding his letter and placing it securely in his pocket as he went. He placed a hand on the door handle and paused.

    “I did love you Dawn,” he said. “I was just too blind to see it.”

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    May greeted him as he arrived home. She looked at him, concerned. He had left the house with an air of forced happiness, but now he appeared exhausted, distraught. She hurried off to the kitchen to make a hot drink, but his voice compelled her to stop.

    “I was wrong,” he said simply.

    “Wrong?” May echoed. “About what?”

    “About Dawn. About everything that I told you about her this morning. I was just… wrong.”

    “How do you know?” she asked as he began digging in one of his pockets.

    “She told me,” he said, holding out Dawn’s letter. May reached out hesitantly, took the pages, and began to read.

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    Here is the final chapter. I hope it's a worthy conclusion.

    Chapter Five: Rebuilding, Rebirth


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    Ash strode through the double doors, his heart bursting with joy. His jacket was slung over one shoulder as he moved quickly down the hallway, looking for a payphone. It took him several moments, but he was finally able to find a free one. He grabbed a coin, ready to insert it in the pay slot, and hesitated. It had been so long… what if he didn’t want to hear a word of it? He swallowed and pushed in the coin, punching the digits in quickly. If there was one thing he knew now, if he kept on waiting it would be too late.

    “Pewter Gym,” a voice said suddenly, interrupting the dial tone.

    “Brock! Please, don’t hang up!” There was a pause.

    “Ash?” he asked.

    “Brock, I… I’m sorry for everything that I said. I was wrong. You were just being the friend that she deserved. The friend that I should have been to both of you.”

    “What’s this about, Ash?” Brock asked slowly, stiffly. Ash stopped, trying to gather his thoughts.

    “I know May called you about Dawn,” he said. “I don’t know how much she told you but I… I learned the truth. It may be years too late, but I know now that I was wrong about her, and about you. I’m sorry.” There was a rush of static on the line, and Ash realized that Brock was sighing.

    “Ash,” he said, beginning to sound a little more like his old self, “how long have we been friends? Do you think I could stay mad at you, after all that you’ve been through? We were both at fault; I should have told you everything years ago, when Dawn asked me too.” Ash smiled, relief breaking across his face.

    “There’s something I have to tell you,” he said. “It’s about me and May.”

    “You’re not looking for love advice, are you?” Brock asked, and Ash laughed.

    “We have a baby girl,” he said. “May gave birth about an hour ago.”

    “What!?” Brock shouted, stunned.

    “Brock, I want you to be her Godfather,” he said.

    “A-are you serious?” Brock asked, his voice cracking.

    “There’s no one better,” Ash replied, “May agrees.”

    “I’m honoured,” Brock said sincerely, all the hurt he had felt since the trial melting away at the news. “Can I ask what her name is?” Ash paused a moment, trying to quell the emotion that had suddenly sprung into his chest.

    “Her name is Dawn,” he said.

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    It's rare for me, as an aspiring author, to be completely satisifed with what I have done. This story is no different, although I am much happier with this than with most of my work. In Reaching Out, I tried to be as emotional as possible. In this story, Searching for Truth, I wasn't deliberately trying to be emotional, but I think it turned out a heartjerker; I'm definitely much more satisfied with it than Reaching Out.

    I hope that you enjoyed this story; it's the first time that I've tried my hand at Pearlshipping, but I think it turned out okay. If you have any questions or comments, I'll be more than happy to respond.

  7. #7
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    Hmm. Why didn't Dawn go to the police or anything? I mean, they'd have all the DNA evidence that they needed...

  8. #8
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    There are a couple of reasons why. The first reason is because of the way that Paul frequently and continuously beat her down. It's an all too sad reality that many abusive husbands are never reported to police by their wives. The reason? They love them too much and are afraid of what could happen.

    While it's true that Dawn was never in love with Paul, he was the only person she had left in her life. She was terrified of being alone, and just couldn't bring herself to report him. And, sadly, as Paul's need for dominance over Dawn grew, her resistance and her will began to crumble. In hand with that is her early pregnancy and her miscarriage; something like that, in a harsh, social environment is bound to leave some emotional scarring.

    Another thing to consider is her age. She was very young when all of this happened, being enticed to Paul by his Tropius's Sweet Scent at only 10. This false affection for Paul conflicted with her true love for Ash, confusing her badly. She was 12 when she became pregnant, and although I never explicitly stated so in the story, she was only 15 when Paul died. A full third of her life was spent with someone who only cared about using her to weaken his rival. She basically ended up as a hollow shell of her former self, which is why when Paul died and her Pokemon abandoned her, she lost the will to live.

    I deliberately didn't say how old she was in the story when Paul died, but since I've now mentioned that I think I should also let everyone know that when she died, she was only 20 years old.

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    A black and white world Blackjack Gabbiani's Avatar
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    Yeah, those details would have been good in the actual fic. Because as it stands, I thought the Sweet Scent was the initial attraction and didn't continue much further, so she had no reason at all, psychological or otherwise, to not report him.

    Hearing about how she managed to get that way would have been interesting too, given that from what we see about her on the show, even when she's in a deep depression she stands up for herself and what she believes in. As it stands here, it's a pretty big leap to think of her being a pushover.

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    Religion is a club Every Breaking Wave's Avatar
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    It's true that those details would have been better inside the fic than in an answer after it's finished, but when I was writing it,I didn't want to go into too much detail because I was afraid that would spoil the mood that I was trying to achieve. I tried to infer it as much as possible, but I guess I'm not very good at that yet.

    It's all pretty much stuff that she wasn't able to tell Ash. She wrote the letter to him in one go, near the river where she drowned. She knew that she was close to Ash, and she knew that she would die soon after she saw him for the last time. She had a sense of urgency when writing the letter because of how little time she had left. Because of that, she only wrote about the details that she thought were most important: namely her love for Ash, the reasons why she left him and Brock, and why she didn't try and stay in touch.

    She was also worried that Ash had heard about some of her past actions through Brock. She didn't want him to think badly of her after she died, so she explained some of her worst mistakes to him in the letter (revealing that her abortion was actually a miscarriage, and that Paul's death was accidental).

    I also don't want people to think that in Reaching Out, she committed suicide. That wasn't the case. She was crossing the river when she drowned, but it was not intentional. It was simply bad luck that the last of her strength vanished as she crossed the final obstacle in her path. She came so close, but she ultimately failed in her goal of seeing Ash for a final time before she died.

    But, despite that, I tried to make her death in Reaching Out filled with some hope. As she died, she saw her mother and her friends all around her, smiling. As she passed into the next life, she knew that despite everything she had done and all of the hurt that she had caused, she had been forgiven by all of them. She was able to die happy, knowing that although her life on Earth had ended, there was the promise of happier times ahead. In relation to that, I deliberately made the first line of Searching for Truth read "Dawn's first light..." Even though she had died, she was still there with Ash in spirit. It's why reading Reaching Out first is so important to understanding the meaning in Searching for Truth.

    In the end, I tried to make the story of Dawn's life as tragic as possible. But I also wanted to show that, no matter how tragic her life may have been, there was still a small glimmer of hope for her at the end. She died happy, although it is perhaps ironic that her death came at the very moment she regained her will to live. Having seen the forgiveness of her mother, and knowing that she could rebuild her lost friendships over time, it was a sad twist of fate that she died as her fighting spirit finally returned.

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    ... Amphlosion's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Matkin22 View Post
    In relation to that, I deliberately made the first line of Searching for Truth read "Dawn's first light..." Even though she had died, she was still there with Ash in spirit. It's why reading Reaching Out first is so important to understanding the meaning in Searching for Truth.
    I noticed that when I started reading it. In fact, I had to go back and read it again because I thought it was literally Dawn >.> And the Farfetch'd thing seemed odd to me, I guess you could call it farfetched...

    I didn't really catch that it wasn't a suicide in Reaching Out, either.

    On another note, can't wait for the update on Final Challenge >.> Major cliffhangerness. For me, these stories are the best things about pokémon, actually.
    ...

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    ShadAmy FTW ^-^ foxkrystal's Avatar
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    This story would be perfect with the song, "Lilium" from Elfen Lied. The story really made made cry when I started to play the songs of Lilium.
    HIGH TOUCH! XD
    "If you attack Konoha, I will have to fight you… So save up your hatred and take it all on me, I'm the only one who can take it! It's the only thing I can do! I will shoulder your hatred and die with you! Because I'm your friend!"
    ~Naruto Uzumaki

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    Registered User pokefan2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by foxkrystal View Post
    The story really made made cry when I started to play the songs of Lilium.
    I started to laugh at the Farfetch'd part,but I was really emotional about the rest of the story and started to cry like a baby.:bawling::bawling::bawling::bawling:

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    Registered User pokefan2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Matkin22 View Post
    There are a couple of reasons why. The first reason is because of the way that Paul frequently and continuously beat her down. It's an all too sad reality that many abusive husbands are never reported to police by their wives. The reason? They love them too much and are afraid of what could happen.
    Some wives do it to their husbands too you know so stop just saying it's only men.

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    ... Amphlosion's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pokefan2 View Post
    Some wives do it to their husbands too you know so stop just saying it's only men.
    Not once did he say that only husbands do it.
    ...

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