I was not sure where I was at the moment. All I knew was that I was in a small room, slightly larger than my body. It was lined with holes on both sides, allowing patches of bright light in. It was otherwise dark. The ground and walls were rather feeble, but still strong enough so that I could not break out.
I heard noises outside. I was not able to understand what they were saying at this time. All I knew was that I was trapped in this room, with no way out.
Then the roof came off.
I shut my eyes at the bright light. When I opened them, I saw a girl of nine years, smiling and overjoyed. She lifted me up, held me close, and kept talking in her strange language. I heard the sound "Rocky" a number of times coming from the girl's mouth. So I assumed that that was what my name now was.
That was six years ago. The girl, whose name was Jane, grew into a fine young woman. She had blonde hair that came down just below the start of her neck, freckles, and the friendliest grin you could find on someone of her age. She stood at about five feet, and, being a bit of a tomboy, she held a strong stature. I was a beagle, a medium-sized, droopy-eared dog with white fur, with large splotches of brown and black. I was Jane's trusty companion.
We lived on a farm, in a rather temperate part of the world. Our large, red house had two stories, and we had a barn with rusty metal walls. The farm was not all that large, but Jane's parents made the best out of it. They raised chickens and pigs, and grew a variety of vegetables and spices in their garden. They made a decent living off of this, enough to maintain ownership of the farm, and then some.
Jane had a number of hobbies. She liked to read, she went fishing, she worked out, she enjoyed primetime cartoons like South Park, she was even good with machinery. However, these all paled in comparison to one one thing.
Jane loved to hunt.
Every weekend, without fail, Jane would go out into the woods just off our property and do some hunting. Of course, she always took me along. She stayed out there for hours at a time, chasing wild ducks, enjoying the scenery, and our lives as well.
One fall day, however, all that changed.
It was late October, if I recall correctly. The leaves had turned orange and fallen to the ground about a month before. That's one thing I always enjoyed; the crunch of old leaves under my paws. Unfortunately, snow had already started to fall, so I was unable to enjoy that experience. The frost on the ground was less desireable, but tolerable.
Anyway, it was starting to get cold at this time of the year. There was a little chill in the air, and Jane was already starting to wear her coat, the one that had been passed down once per generation. It had a red plaid design, with wool linings on the inside. Normally, it would have been passed down to a son, but Jane was an only child, so she got it.
Today was Saturday. Jane always woke up on Saturdays at five. She would get up, brush her teeth, and grab a quick breakfast bar. She always gave me a biscuit, which I loved so very much. She would throw on her coat and a pair of jeans and grab her BB gun, and we would be off.
This started like any other day. We wandered about woods, shooting at ducks and enjoying ourselves as usual. The skies were gray and cloudy, typical for a late autumn day.
Then it was lunchtime. Jane had packed herself a couple ham sandwiches, and some spare ham for me. She knew how much I loved ham.
Jane had finished her first sandwich and I had finished my lunch. I was now lying on the ground, waiting for her to finish up her second sandwich. She began to take a bite, then saw something in the distance and hesitated. She stared for a few seconds, before addressing me. She called me by my name and pointed to it.
I turned to look at what she was pointing at. The forest seemed normal enough; trees were barren, rodents scurried across the ground, and some old logs rotted in the distance. Then something appeared to climb over one of those logs, and I saw it.
It was a small orange piglet, with large, curious eyes. Its muzzle and the back half of its torso were black, but there was a yellow mark on its snout. Its tail was coiled like any other pig or boar I had seen, but there was a red ball on the tip. It sniffed around, appearing to be new to this world. As far as I could tell, it was; I had never seen a pig that looked quite like it.
I got up to investigate, but Jane hushed me and motioned for me to sit back down. She got up herself, still holding her sandwich, and began to approach the piglet.
Jane waved the sandwich in front of herself, so as to lure the strange boar. This was nothing new to me; she has done it with many other critters in the past.
Slowly but surely, the piglet approached, watching its surroundings with every step. When it finally arrived, it sniffed the sandwich, and took a bite. It chewed for a moment, but spat it out and coughed. Normally, pigs would not do that; I had seen pigs eat pork before with no problem. This was not an ordinary pig.
As the piglet coughed up its food, Jane watched with a warm smile on her face. She chuckled and patted the the piglet on its head.
She then turned to me, and motioned for us to keep going. We had a few hours until it would be dark.
We began to walk deeper into the woods. We had walked a fair distance when we heard a small sound coming from back behind us.
It was the piglet again. It was following us, as if it had nowhere else to go. This was not all that crazy to believe, to be completely honest. The expression on its face was of worry, or maybe shyness. It was not easy to tell which.
For a moment, Jane just thought. She wrinkled her eyebrows, and stared into space. Then, she finally made decision. She said something I could not make out.
The piglet's frown grew into a massive smile as it bounded up to us. When it finally caught up, it decided to walk between me and Jane. I was fine with this; Jane wouldn't be going anywhere without her long-time best friend.
Several hours passed. The clouds in the sky had turned a darker shade of gray, almost black. Wild animals were harder to find now. The wind was picking up.
Jane, the piglet, and I were still out hunting. The piglet and I were both fairly cold, since neither of us had that long hair. I sniffed the ground, looking for a scent. I listened, in hopes of hearing some rustling. I soon heard it at about 2 o'clock from my snout. I pointed in its direction, and Jane led the way, all of us tiptoeing.
It appeared to be coming from a nearby shrubbery. Jane pointed his BB gun at gun at it, and in a rare moment of incompitance, pulled the trigger. The gun fired, startling the piglet. I didn't blame it; the gunfire had startled me when I was younger, too.
I heard a quacking sound, and wings flapping. It was a mallard duck, fleeing the scene as fast as it could.
Jane sighed at her failure. Truth be told, she had never caught anything on any of our hunting trips.
After standing in her place for a solid minute, she turned back in the direction of our farm. It was late and time to go home. That night, going home would not be as easy as normal.
Snow started falling to the ground. The winds started to pick up, and soon, snow was being blown all around us. We were trapped in a blizzard.
I heard Jane calling my name. She had started a mad dash towards the farm. The piglet and I quickly decided to follow.
Snow was getting into all our eyes. The low temperatures were hindering us. It seemeed that we would not make it.
That's when it happened.
The piglet, sensing our danger, ran ahead of us. I did not know what it was doing, Jane did not seem to know, but the piglet did.
It took a deep breath, and and massive ball of flame exploded from its mouth. The intense heat melted the snow on our faces, and for a moment, we could see an old oak, split down the middle. Jane and I had seen this oak many times before; we were not too far from home.
Jane shouted some directions to the piglet. We started a sprint towards the northwest, to our farm. All the way, the piglet kept spewing small, orange orbs from its mouth. They seemed to give off a large amount of heat, but somewhat less than the blast before.
Within twenty minutes, we saw the old barn in distance. We ran even faster than before, hearing Jane's name being shouted over the wind. Within minutes, Jane, the piglet, and I were at our doorstep.
Jane's mother, a pudgy, middle-aged woman whose brown hair was held in a bun, was waiting there, and hugged both me and Jane. She was saying something to Jane, when she caught sight of the piglet.
Jane's mom smiled when she saw the piglet. She turned to her daughter and murmured something while the wild creature shyly watched.
Jane's mom got down on her knees and said something to the piglet. I could not understand what she said, but the piglet could. It tiptoed up to her and, to all of our surprise, held out its paw. Jane's mom then chuckled and shook it.
The piglet was here to stay. Jane's parents took it in, since they were so grateful for it saving our lives. They talked about it a lot, throwing around the words "Tepig" and "Pokémon." So assumed that it was named Tepig, and it was a Pokémon.
Jane stayed indoors the following day. She always took Sundays off to relax, and I've noticed that many other humans do as well.
Today, Jane was just watching some random television shows in her bedroom. Jane was just lying on her bed, and I lied at her feet. Tepig was new to this arrangement, but quickly decided to park down on her lap. She flipped to one particular channel. South Park was on.
It was last week's episode. The fat kid that I despise so much found himself with a pet, a large blue turtle with an orange shell. True to form, by the end of the episode, the turtle had been brutally killed.
I noticed, though, that the term "Pokémon" was thrown around a lot during this particular episode. I hadn't noticed this the first time the episode aired, but apparently, the turtle was of the same species of Tepig, or something. It was hard to tell.
I also noticed that the Tepig seemed to be understanding the humans far better than I did. I could only pick out a few words and based most everything else I got on tone of voices. Tepig seemed to have a knack for understanding the English launguage.
As it watched the episode, it seemed a little concerned. I wasn't surprised. Of course the little guy would be scared by the little fat kid. I knew I was.
The next day was Monday, a school day. Jane got in her dad's old Pinto and drove off at about half past six.
Her parents went off to tend to the animals they raised. This left me and Tepig on our own.
I was in the mood to take a nap. So I curled up in the hallway, and closed my eyes.
A few hours later, I was woken up by Tepig. It was holding an old, worn-out tennis ball in its mouth. I hadn't seen it in years; Jane used to use to play fetch with me when I was a puppy. I must say, those were the days.
Tepig layed the ball on the ground, and wagged its tail, smiling. It wanted to play with me. So I got up and we went outside.
We decided to play in the space between the house's side door and the barn's entrance. It was dirt most of the year, but in this season, there was a thin of snow on the ground.
I wasn't sure how Tepig expected us to play. Neither of us had the opposable thumbs necessary to play a game of catch.
Tepig knew this, and decided to try something new. It scooped the ball up onto its snout. It balanced the ball on the tip of its nose with ease, then flipped the balls upwards and hit it dead-on with its snout.
I was obivously taken by surprise. The ball flew past me. Truth be told, I was not in the best shape of my life, nor was I all that interested in playing.
I retrieved the ball and returned it to Tepig. It stared at me and the ball, a little confused. It had been expecting to throw it back.
I attempted the same maneuveur that Tepig did. I couldn't even get the ball onto my snout. Obviously, catch was not a good option.
Tepig thought for a moment, then grinned. It trotted up to me, tapped me with its snout, and ran off. Tag. I was it.
I dashed after the little porker, and caught up with him on the south side of the barn. I tapped him with my muzzle and sprinted off.
The little tried to catch up to me, but it just couldn't run all that fast. So, it resorted to extreme measures.
It spat some of those hot orbs at me.
Thankfully, they missed, but barely. When they landed on the ground, they melted the snow on impact. In a few spots in a small circle on the ground, there were now puddles.
I was shocked by Tepig's willingness to do this. He could fry me like a hot dog in a second.
Obviously, I wasn't going to give him that chance. I just looked at him for a moment. He stared back, sensing my fear and looking like he felt a good amount of regret. Regret or no regret, I bolted back inside the house.
For the next few days, Tepig kept trying to wake me up to play some more. I wasn't in the mood to play with a fire-breathing boar, so I just went back to sleep each time.
Wednesday night came along, and a new episode of South Park did as well. Jane, Tepig, and I all sat down to watch the episode, all in our usual spots.
This episode did not seem to be focusing on the fat kid, to my pleasure. It was focusing more on the kid in the blue hat. As always, I was curious as to what the episode itself would be focusing on.
Half an hour later, the episode had ended, leaving me very surprised.
As it turned out, the kid in the blue hat found himself with a Pokémon. It was a blue and black cat-like creature. What surprised me even more was that it was still alive at the end of the episode.
The other kids got their own Pokémon as well, including the fat kid. The adults seemed to be bickering over these Pokémon, but since I can't understand their language very well, I couldn't make anything out.
The Pokémon that appeared in the episode themselves looked to be causing a little trouble. Various accidents were caused all over town by the beasts: fire, earthquakes, blizzards, and the like. Even so, the kids were definitely defending the Pokémon, which I found completely stupid.
After thinking about this for a moment, I glanced over to Jane. She was scratching Tepig behind the ears, as she usually did. I found it a bit strange that she was giving Tepig more attention than me. She clearly didn't know how dangerous the little piglet was. Nor did she know who the more important of us two was.
Before I knew it, it was Saturday morning again. Jane and I got up and did our usual Saturday morning routine. They were slightly changed, however, to accomodate Tepig, who wanted to join us. The biggest change, to be honest, was Jane cutting Tepig a piece of an apple. Within about ten or fifteen minutes, we were off.
Hours passed. Jane had been shooting at much less than usual, I noticed, maybe four times the whole trip. I couldn't tell whether it was to not scare Tepig so much, or because she was interested in enjoying the surroundings than usual.
It was not like we didn't come across anything at all. In fact, I saw a wider variety of creatures I could only assume were Pokémon. The beasts ranged from brown, fox-like creatures with large, furry collars, to walking acorns, to large red spiders. To my surprise, not one of them attacked us.
Until the end of our time out, that is. But that's not important quite yet.
Of course, Tepig was more than fine with Jane not firing her BB gun as much. It was still terrified every time the gun blasted. It also seemed a little concerned for the other Pokémon. It understood what guns could do to them.
Anyway, about as soon as it went dark, Jane decided it was time to go home. This was much earlier than usual. Even last winter, she'd normally stay out for another hour or two after dark.
I suspect that this was because of Tepig. It had a bit of a chill, and it obviously didn't like her shooting at anything. Jane wanted to accomodate it, and it showed.
To be perfectly honest, this resulted in my least enjoyable Saturday in a long time.
We headed back home at a leisurely pace. There was no sign that any blizzard would be brewing up on this day. It seemed we would make it without much of a fight.
But you probably figured out, this was when we got attacked.
A painful shriek filled the air, coming from behind us. I winced from hearing it, and so did Jane and Tepig.
I turned around to see the source of the cacophony. It was a blue bat-like creature with purple wings, long, skinny appendages in place of legs, and no eyes. The few, sharp teeth it had were bared at this point, and its wings were glowing.
It divebombed at me, crashing its wing my body. The force the wing hit me with threw me on my side, onto the frosty ground. I landed hard, and as a result, I struggled to get back up.
Tepig noticed my struggle and, despite still being stricken by the noise the bat made, managed to focus on the the creature on blow a pillar of flame. The flame scorched the creature quite a bit, but to my surprise, a little fire was not going to scare it off.
Jane was now recovering from the creature's screech, and readied her gun. The creature, despite lacking eyes, noticed this. It dived at her, sparks forming in front of it. It hit the gun's barrel head-on, snapping it in half.
The creature was now hovering close to the ground. Tepig seemed a little dizzy, but flames started to grow around it. It charged the creature which dodged out of the way just in time. Instead of hitting its opponent, Tepig crashed into a snowbank, which melted around the poor guy and doused its flames.
At this point, I was back on my feet. I rushed over to Tepig to help him up. As Tepig just got on his feet, our assailant spat a purple cloud at it. Tepig got out of the way just in time, but I did not respond fast enough.
It hit me on the shoulder, and the pain it gave felt like no other I had felt before. I felt like I could barely move at all.
As I collapsed back onto the ground, Tepig glared at the creature. It stamped its foot, sniffed the air, and charged at its opponent one more time. As it ran, a ball of flame grew around him, eventually reaching the size of a small car. The creature tried to fly out Tepig's path, but Tepig wouldn't lose its sight on the creature. It lept into the air and crashed into the creature, both of them colliding with the oak in the process.
Both of them fell to the ground. Tepig quickly got to its feet and walked away, exhausted but still strong. The creature slowly picked itself up, hissed at us, and flew away into the night.
During all this, Jane had just watched in stunned silence. She slowly walked over to Tepig and pat him on the head. Then she remembered and rushed to me, repeating my name over and over, clearly concerned.
She had every right to be. I was getting weaker by the second. We both knew that if I didn't get medical fast, I wouldn't make it.
Out of the corner of my eye, I saw the oak. It had burst into flames after Tepig had crashed into it, and it was now crashing down onto the cold ground. As the last of its embers faded away, I shut my eyes.
That was half an hour ago. Right now, I'm sitting on a cold, metal table, being inspected by a veterinarian. He's checking my shoulder right now.
In the lobby, I've seen numerous other pets with various injuries and wounds. One cat was covered with cuts, the likes of which were larger than any other I've seen. A dog had singed fur, but it seemed mostly okay. Another cat was completely wet. Water shouldn't be that painful, even to a cat, but it seemed like it close to fainting.
The doctor's done checking me. He's now talking to Jane, who's holding Tepig in her arms. The tone of his voice does not sound good. Nor does the fact that Jane is now bursting into tears.
Tepig just wriggled out of Jane's arms, and is now lying next to me on the table. Its expression is of the utmost sympathy.
Its body is giving off an incredible amount of heat right now. I'm thankful for that, since I'm even weaker than I was before. I'm almost entirely unable to move, and by own body is frighteningly cold.
Tepig is closing its eyes and lying its head on the table right now. Tepig knows what's about to happen, and it wants to comfort me.
I'm starting to like the little guy again. It'd make the perfect companion for Jane, assuming I really am about to die right now. It's got a great heart, and it's young enough to accomodate Jane for years to come. Even if I make it, I'll be gone in a few years, like any dog would. It's perfect for her.
Well, there is no use to delaying the inevitable. I close my eyes and lie my head next Tepig's.
Take good care of her, little guy.