Originally, Chapter 3 and Chapter 4 were going to be one chapter but then I realized it was going to be too rushed and too long so I seperated them into two chapters. So that's the reason why Chapter 3 is a bit on the short side. ^^;
Alice looked up at her friend in worry, the girl’s face showing almost no emotion as she gazed out the window. With her back propped against the wall of the bed and pillow in a tight hug close to her chest, there was such a great distance between her and Sen that it began to unnerve her.
Sen looked away from the setting sun to her companion beside her. The Pikachu never left her side for the past hour; she just lay beside her as though protecting her from any further harm. Sen let a sad smile play on her face as she petted Alice in between her ears. The mouse let out a small coo of pleasure, closing her raven eyes to enjoy it more.
“I’m okay, Alice,” Sen told her, though her defeated tone betrayed her words. It was dry and rough from the crying she had done in the beginning, dried tears were evident on her cheeks.
“I just need to...”
Truthfully, she didn’t know what she needed to do. Sen knew she couldn’t sit in her room forever, even if that is what she wanted. She had to talk to her mom sooner or later but at the moment, she couldn’t bring herself to leave the comfort of her bed.
After the party was dismissed (much to the little cousins' argues), Gwen had tried to come in, to comfort her in her time of sadness.
"Sen, please let me in," she had said outside the door, tone one the edge of pleading. "I know how you feel...."
"No you don't! You don't know how I feel so just leave me alone!"
The outburst had been so harsh and unexpected that a long period of silence followed. During, Sen had buried her head in shame, wondering why on Earth she had yelled; to her best friend of all people.
"I...understand," Gwen was heard saying later. The apparent hurt made Sen's heartache but an apology wouldn't form on her lips, something within her holding her back. "I'm going to stay at the Pokemon Center if you want to talk. I'm your best friend, Sen, I care about you and I don't like seeing you hurt like this."
Footsteps were heard going down the stairs and the girl could imagine them going through the living room. When the door was heard closing, Sen broke into a sob at what she just did.
She must hate me right now, she was just trying to help. If I can't let her help, what kind of friend am I?
A soft knock sounded on her door, making Sen let out a tired sigh. All she wanted was to be alone, right now, couldn’t her mom understand that?
I can’t keep ignoring her forever, though.
she thought when the knocking ceased.
The woman was probably standing uneasily behind the closed door, fiddling with a tendril of hair. A part of the young girl wanted to keep her out of the room but the more sensible part of her knew she could keep her out forever.
Turning her gaze once again to the window, Sen said, “Come in...”
Mrs. Takashi opened the door and stepped inside the room, her eyes spotting the form of her daughter on the bed. The lack of light made her look sullen and depressed. The once neat hair was a bird's next on her head from the time she spent on her bed curled up in a tight ball, letting cries of despair escape her. Stray tears were hanging off her eyelashes, ready to trail down her sunken eyes at any shake of her head.
Sen didn’t give an indication that she heard, her body still motionless. The mother made her way to the bed and sat down on the edge. The blue dress Sen had worn was now a heap of cloth on the floor.
“Sen, I know you’re mad at me,” she started. “And I don’t blame you.”
I wanted to be a trainer, Mom,” Sen told her, averting the concerned eyes.
The signs were obvious, weren't they? I mean, I thought she knew...all this time.
Whenever trainers wandered into Floroma Town, Sen would leaver her house in hopes of seeing a battle. When a pokemon was hit, her mind would race to think of a couunter attack the trainer could have commanded the pokemon to do, maybe to lessen the heavy blow or to avoid it all together. When the side she was silently rooting for had the upper hand, she would think of teh reason they were winning. Was it because they were more skilled, more thoughtful, or was it just luck? Her jaw would drop in amazement when the side who had a type disadvantage would pull off an impressive win, most of the time at the last possible second. Soon, the battle would end and she would trudge back into her house, not even aware of the scoldings she always got for "being too close to something so dangerous".
Faintly, she could see the forms of children playing outside with a ball. How she wished she could be their age again, to not have to worry about what was going to happen in the future.
“Why do you want me to be a nurse instead?”
This time, it was the mother’s turn to sigh.
“I know you wanted to be trainer, it’s just that.... being a trainer is rough and you can get hurt.”
Sen whirled around to face her mother, now beginning to understand her words.
“You don’t think I can make it as a trainer, do you?”
Mrs. Takashi averted Sen’s eyes but nodded.
“There’s a lot that can happen out there, Sen. Nobody will be there to protect you. Alice is only a pet, she’s not a battler.”
Sen laid a hand on Alice who looked offended at the comment.
“She’ll get stronger and I’ll catch other pokemon, too.”
“There are other trainers much stronger than you and they may take advantage of you.”
Sen now got to her knees, annoyed at what her mom was implying.
“I’m not going to be weak, Mom! We’ll train and train, become stronger...”
“I don’t want my only daughter to get hurt,” Mrs. Takashi said, her tone becoming strained. “That’s why I want you to go to the Joy Academy instead.”
Sen’s anger was mounting as her mom continued to ignore what she was trying to show.
“But I don’t want to become a nurse! I want to be a pokemon trainer!”
The short haired woman stood up from the bed and faced the nettled girl with a stern look.
“Tomorrow we’re going to talk about when you leave for the Academy. You’ll thank me for this, maybe not today but you will.”
Sen watched her mom walk down the room, her grip tightening on the pillow she still held. When her mother left the room, she let out a frustrated scream and hurled the pillow at the closed door. The pillow made an audible ‘thump!’ before falling to the bedroom floor, Sen made no move to retrieve it.
“I hate this! She treats me like a little kid!”
Alice gripped her owner’s wrist in an attempt to calm her down, scared that Sen would hurt herself if more stuff was thrown. Sen let out a depressed sigh and sat back down on her bed, running fingers through her ponytail.
“She may not let us go on a pokemon journey,” she began, a smile unlike her own spreading on her features. “But that’s not gonna stop us.”
The house was silent hours later. All rooms were bathed in darkness except for the occasion shimmer of a streetlight outside that managed to creep into the house. In Sen’s room, however, it was anything but peaceful. On the soft carpeted floor, the girl was on her knees packing everything she deemed necessary in a small backpack including clothes and all the money she had (which was approximately 200 Pokedollars). Sen had patiently awaited the time that her mother would go to bed and still after to make sure she was asleep. The creaking of the door made her heart skip a beat, making her drop the coins she held in her grip.
“Pika,” came the soft, and slightly muffled, voice of Alice from the doorway.
Sen let out a breath she didn’t know she was holding. Running away in the middle of the night wasn’t doing her nerves any good. If anything else, it had put her on the edge.
“You got the food?” she whispered to her pokemon.
Something sliding on the floor was heard and when Alice stepped closer. Sen made out the bag of sweet bread being dragged by the knot with a container of Poke Chow food on top. It wasn’t exactly fine dining but it would do until they got to the next town, Eterna City.
Taking the items, she carefully arranged them inside the pack then closed the clasp with a satisfied smile. When she let go, she found her fingers shaking. All of this was happening too fast for her mind to handle but she knew that her mom would get her way the next day. By going on her own journey, she and Alice could become stronger. They would show her mother that they could make it out there in the world, despite what she said. Sen picked up the backpack (which she admitted was heavier than she intended) and heaved it onto her shoulders.
“Come on, lets get out of here.”
Closing the door behind her, they walked down the stairs as quietly as they could. Sen could swear she heard her mom’s soft snores from the closed door they passed but then found it was the sound of her own beating heart. The hallway was lined with a row of framed pictures. Family portraits, birthday parties, and special occasions were hung on that wall and as Sen descended the stairs, she felt she was leaving those parts of her life forever. They hit the living room where memories of the party swarmed her already nervous mind. She gave those unwanted thoughts a mental push and walked to the door. A cool rush of air hit their faces when she opened it, ridding them of any somnolence that still remained. Both of them stood in front of the open door in hesitancy, the streetlights outside illuminating their faces.
What’s holding us back? Fear? Excitement?
Alice looked up at her, awaiting her friend’s move. With one last glance at the house, Sen took a deep breath and nodded.