Chapter 9: Drowning in the past

Written by Nicole

Hi, I'm Nicole! Here at Nikkaflora, we help people create their dream story and their dream life through the power of storytelling, creativity, and personal growth. In my free time, I enjoy watching Dragon Ball and drinking boba.


My feet continue pedaling on their own accord as I distance myself even further from that bastard. Why did he have to show up here of all places!?

He even had the nerve to talk to me after everything he’s done back at the academy. What’s his deal!? Just because he’s not surrounded by his stupid cronies anymore, Brendan thinks he’s all buddy-buddy with me now!? I don’t get it.

Brendan and I grew up together since he lived on the same street as me in Littleroot. We used to go to each other’s houses to play together, pretend that we’re Pokemon trainers, and swore that we would become the first Champion duo in Hoenn.

I know that Brendan has always been competitive. He threw little fits whenever I crushed him at soccer and other sports. But he also bragged about his grades every time he aced his tests in school. Regardless of our disagreements, Brendan Birch always supported me and encouraged me to achieve my goals.

I remember the time when there was a regional soccer tournament back in middle school. Brendan would throw pebbles at my window so that he can wake me up at 6am in the morning. He claimed that training hard and practicing with him will help me win the contest. Although I complained about waking up earlier than usual, competing in the tournament was a piece of a cake for me afterwards.

Brendan was the most perfect best friend I ever had. What the hell happened to him at the Academy? I don’t even know why he became such an egotistical jerkface during senior year.

Shaking my head, I make a quick right when I see a stream of water up ahead. I have no idea where the entrance is, but following the water might get me out of here. After running at full-speed for about 15 minutes, my lungs start to give out as I loudly gasp for air.

I want to stop; however, I’m determined to be at the other side of the planet if necessary. I still recall how much I cried and broke down the moment Brendan ditched me. It was worse since he was my only friend before.

My train of thought is interrupted when some debris cracks and loosens from under me. Before I could even fully look down, I end up tripping over a large rock which then propels my body into the stream. I cringe over the water’s temperature and how it’s threatening to freeze me to death.

Panic finally engulfs me once I realize I’m being swept away by a strong current of water. I need to make it to shore or else I’ll be a goner.

Using all of the muscles in my body, I manage to get my head above the water. However, the flow still pushes me against my will.

“Help!” I yell. “Please help! I can’t get out!”

My eyes peer around quickly, and the color drains from my face when no one answers my call. Blaze and Steven are probably still elsewhere in the cave. Shame dawns on me once I realize I abandoned my Pokemon partner.

“Arceus! Please help!” I scream. “Lord Arceus! Please help me!”

I highly doubt the God of all Pokemon will come, but it was worth a try.

Some of my strength starts to slip, and my eyes slacken from the cold. Before they completely close, a flash of red light appears in front of me. A shadowy figure flies toward me, yanking hard on my hair afterwards.

Looking above, Taillow has escaped her Pokeball in order to save me.

“Taillow! Please help me! I can’t swim out of here!”

Taillow lets out a growl and then swoops down again. Instead of aiming for my hair this time, she gestures her tiny body toward my face. I wrap my arms around her tightly. Taillow shrieks as she tries to lift me out of the water but panics once my grip loosens.

“I-I’m sorry. I-I can’t hold on,” I explain weakly.

Extending an arm, I try to reach out to her but another fast wave pulls me underneath again. I didn’t even have the chance to hold my breath in time because more water fills up my lungs. My vision starts to darken as my eyes finally close completely.

Right now, it feels like time has stopped. Instead of sinking into frosty water, I suddenly watch myself falling into an endless sea of clouds. Peeking down to where my hands are, I’m shocked when I see my fingers covered in rings I don’t even own. I also notice I’m wearing some type of weird, frilly red dress.

One of the rings, the third on my left hand, releases a quick explosion of light. It blinds me for a second until I hear an imposing roar in the distance. I swivel my head to the right, shouting in surprise when a gigantic snakelike creature flies toward me at top speed. It opens its mouth widely, preparing to eat me-

“May! Wake up! May!!!” someone screams.

My eyes jolt open as a tight pressure is placed against my chest. I lurch forward slightly in order to cough out some water. The weight squeezes my body once again, causing my lungs to release more fluid.

It takes a few seconds for my eyesight to clear up. I sigh in relief when I see Steven holding onto me from behind. His pained expression eases a bit once he notices I’m staring back at him.

Steven glances at his left. “She’s conscious! Throw the rope now! I won’t be able to hold on for much longer!”

Turning my head in the same direction, Brendan nods, lassos a huge rope above him a few times, and then tosses it as hard as he can toward us. Steven lets go of the boulder he was previously gripping so that he can grab the rope instead with his left hand.

“We’re going to pull now! Don’t let go!” Brendan yells back.

Brendan plants his feet firmly onto the ground, tugging on the rope with all of his might. It takes him a couple of minutes before he finally makes some progress. Steven and I gradually move about 10 feet closer to shore until the rope snaps midway.

“No! May!” Brendan screams. He leaps forward, falling onto fours. My former best friend extends an arm toward me as the current takes control, sweeping us away.

“Skarmory! Use metal sound toward the current! And then agility! Make it quick!” Steven orders.

“What?” I utter.

“Cover your ears May!”

I barely do what he says in time. Steven also places his hands over mine. The sound is almost completely drowned out, but I can still witness more of Skarmory’s true power. The powerful bird Pokemon flies over the stream, releasing a fierce soundwave from his mouth.

The water around us levitates upwards as Skarmory releases more severe cries. Taillow appears to have caught on to the plan because she goes next to Skarmory, copying his mechanism with her signature growl.

Almost all of the water around us is now floating rapidly in the air. Skarmory uses this as his opportunity to swoop in at a blazing speed, scooping Steven and me onto his back. Once we’re above the water, Taillow stops her growling. The suspended liquid then falls straight down into the nearly empty steam, resuming its previous movement.

I sigh once Skarmory makes it to land. My whole body feels like jelly while Steven hops off, gently carrying me bridal-style. Brendan runs toward us, almost getting in my personal space.

“Are you okay May?” he asks. “That was a close one!”

A few tears spew out of my eyes once I remember why I fell into the water in the first place. I kind of wish I was back in that cloudy place again. I would rather get eaten by that snakelike god-looking monster instead of dealing with Brendan.

Steven meets my ex-friend’s gaze. “She is still in shock. It is best to provide us with some space.”

“I can call up her parents. Her dad will fly down here and pick her up,” Brendan says. He pulls out his PokeNav from his bag, dialing a couple of digits until Steven interrupts.

“No need,” my silver-haired friend states firmly. “Mr. Maple trusts me to take care of his daughter. I will escort her elsewhere so that she can recover properly.”

Brendan closes his pokedex, but his eyes narrow slightly in response. “So you two are close? I find it hard to believe Norman would approve of you being around her.”

A pang of anger shoots through me. I open my mouth to retort, but Steven beats me to it.

“My relationship with May is none of your concern. Now, if you will excuse us.”

With that being said, Steven turns around to start walking in the other direction. I glance back to see Brendan watching us with a stark expression. His face eventually fades into blackness as my eyes completely shut themselves.

I don’t know how long I’ve been out; however, the first thing I feel is warmth enveloping my body in its lovely embrace. Moving my head up a little, I survey around until a hand rests over mine.

Steven is sitting on the edge of the bed, gently pushing my head down onto the pillow.

“You need to rest,” he says. “It will take some more time for you to heal. You must feel exhausted after that dreadful encounter.”

“Second time you saved me,” I point out. “If you do it again, you will officially be my knight in silver armor.”

He cracks a smile at my lame joke, although his eyes say otherwise. “Well that is my occupation now. I feel some reassurance knowing you have your sense of humor.”

“Some?” I repeat. “Are you okay?”

Steven lets out a heavy exhale. He pinches the bridge of his nose before seriousness overtakes his features.

“May, what happened in the cave earlier? I’m referring to when you ran away from the mere sight of that man. Did he harm you in the past?”

I’m immediately stunned into silence. I don’t even know what to say at this point.

Steven catches on quickly because he speaks up again. “Forgive me for prodding. But I would appreciate some type of explanation. If what he did was a grave crime, we can file a police report together-”

“He didn’t do anything like that,” I jump in. “Brendan used to be my best friend. He backstabbed me and ditched me back at Rustboro Academy. He’s a two-faced jerk. But he’s not a criminal.”

“Hm I see,” Steven comments. “I can send him away if we encounter him again. I may not know the full story; however, I’m sorry for whatever transpired between you two. It must have been painful to see him.”

“It’s better if you don’t know. I don’t even like thinking about it,” I admit. “I’ll get over it, but it sucks since we grew up together. Brendan and I were like two peas in a pod.”

“I understand why you were so desperate for a Pokemon. You must have felt so lonely,” Steven says.

I avert my eyes from his burning gaze. I start to feel uncomfortable when Steven continues to look at me intensely. I breathe again once he changes the subject.

“We don’t have to talk about it if you do not wish to. I apologize if I made you feel uncomfortable,” he says. “You should acquire more rest. We can investigate tomorrow once you are in good health.”

I nod slowly, sinking back into the bed. Steven lifts the bed cover up to my neck. He gives me a small smile before leaning over partly.

Steven stops for a second, seeming to think about something. Then he resumes leaning toward me again. Heat brushes against my cheeks when his lips press against my forehead.

“Goodnight May,” he whispers. “I wish you a full recovery and sweet dreams tonight.”

“Goodnight Steven. Thank you for being my silver knight,” I reply back.

The man chuckles as he stands up and makes his way toward the door at the foot of my bed. He looks back at me once more before finally exiting the room.

Thanks for reading Chapter 9: Drowning in the past from Red Silver Hearts!

Let me know what you think about the story in the comments down below.

Disclaimer: The image above is only used to help the reader visualize what the chapter is about. Photo image credit: Demetros from Pixabay.

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💜 Nicole 💜

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