It’s not easy being little.
It’s hard, being a kid and being on your own.
Being told “you’re a pokemon trainer now! You can handle being without your parents forever from now on!”
Or being thrust out of the house with a “don’t you dare make me embarrassed of you”
And when an entire team of evil people are after you, it’s even harder.
You’d been glad to be away from school, glad to be away from your father….but you missed your mom and these Team Rocket people were scary. All the trainers you met were so strong, and it was so hard to figure out the type matching to beat them.
Luckily some trainers were easy to read. Bird Keepers always had their cages with them, Bug Catchers had nets….but you were only ten.
Your first badge had gotten you plenty of money for you and your Totodile, and you were trying so hard to finish the Pokedex that you used most of it to buy more pokeballs. Really, other than the gyms and the dex, you had no clue what you were doing.
Someone would ask “Wanna trade THIS pokemon for THAT pokemon?” and you’d catch an extra just to do it in case you didn’t see that one in the wild. You usually did though…
And you trained so hard, getting stuck at Whitney’s gym because of that terrifyingly rough Miltank.
You even spent hours in the bushes south of town just building levels and trying to find a Ditto (you did, and you named it Bubblegum), so you could get the cute baby pokemon that Professor Oak said weren’t found in the wild.
But by the time you’d made it to the Whirlpool Islands, you were done.
Deep in the cave, you curled up with your Feraligator and sobbed. You were one little girl against what felt like the whole world, and finding pokemon was getting harder and harder. How were you supposed to find something like Mew?! Or that strange green elf that people talked about in the woods near Kurt’s house? It was impossible!
You really weren’t good enough. You really were as worthless as your father made you feel.
The softest splashing of water came from the pool next to you, and you looked up into the soft eyes of the legendary bird, Lugia.
The psychic Pokemon crooned softly to you, even as your big strong starter braced himself beside you.
“H-hi…” you sniffled, and when the bird leaned its head down to you, you hugged it instinctively. “You’re a good pokemon. You protect your islands, and the pokemon who live here….you protect the ocean…..I wish someone could protect me.”
Lugia’s calm sounds thrummed through you, and your Feraligator relaxed as the legendary continued its gentle treatment. He’d tried to protect you all this time, but he couldn’t reach the monsters inside your mind. Maybe Lugia could.
You giggled as the large bird licked you with just the tip of its tongue, the tears drying as the peace of Lugia’s presence calmed you. This pleased the giant, and it folded its wings, laying in the pool with its head curled close.
You don’t know how, but you realize it’s saying it wants to be with you now. That the islands can protect themselves for a while. That you need it more.
“O-oh?” Those big eyes blink slowly at you, and it coos again as you take out an ultraball.
You know even before the third wobble of the ball that Lugia is staying with you.
You never feel alone again.