All right, here's another chapter. This one took me like seven hours, but it was totally worth it! Ya, its pretty soon after Chapter 1, but I'm still psyched for this story!
A Confrontation in the Cafe
“Salvage Springs? Sounds rusty.” I said, staring at the town below.
“Hee hee! That’s funny! No, it’s named that due to all the Salvaging Teams that make the town their base.” April replied with a giggle. She started to walk down the path, so I followed behind her.
“Salvaging Teams? What are those?”
“Oh, of course you wouldn’t know that. Salvaging Teams go out into the world in search of things that people have left behind. And then finding someone who wants those things,” she stopped and turned to look at me, and with a smirk, she continued, “for the right price of course!” We continued down the path.
“Interesting. It sounds like you know a lot about this kind of stuff.”
“But of course! It’s been my life’s dream to be a Salvager! One Pokemon’s junk is another’s treasure, am I right? Going to all sorts of caves and forests to look for abandoned contraptions! There’s no place I won’t go! I’ll even go to the bottom of the ocean, if someone’s willing to pay for such a thing.”
“I’m starting to wonder what you like more, the actual salvaging, or the money involved,” I mentioned with a chuckle.
“Humph! I want to salvage, that’s what I’ve dreamt about for years. But the money doesn’t hurt you know.” April seemed a little offended by the statement.
“Of course not, I was just saying-“
“I know what you were saying.” She stopped again. She turned to face me. She looked sad. “Look, it’s not your fault. I shouldn’t have gotten upset like that. It’s just…”
“It’s just what?”
“Nothing. Let’s just keep moving.” It was relatively quiet for the rest of the trip down the slope. I felt bad, but it was obviously something she didn’t want to talk about, so I didn’t push it. She still helped me out when I needed a little assistance getting down certain parts where the road was in bad condition. I still had to get used to the idea that my legs were shorter then they were supposed to be. I actually started to think that I didn’t have legs, and that my feet were stuck to my torso just like that. But, not wanting to induce some crazy panic attack that nearly got me when I first woke up, I pushed the thought away. Soon enough, we arrived at the main gate into town.
The gate itself was merely an arch. It looked to be made of various odds and ends. Perhaps things teams had found that nobody else wanted. Or maybe the mayor or such had requested items to build this. It wasn’t important, so I didn’t worry about it.
“So, Sparky, what should I show you first?” April said, finally cheering up a bit.
“Well, I dunno. I don’t know anything around here. What does a town usually have?”
“Never mind that, we’ll look at each shop and area in turn then if you don’t know what’s here. But first, why not a bite to eat?” My stomach growled at the thought of food, and so I agreed. “Great! I’m a bit hungry to. There’s a wonderful place in town that offers up some great meals.”
As we walked through town, I noticed that some buildings were more colorful than others, and some had images denoting Pokemon, or wares. One building was half green and half purple. The whole thing was shaped like a lizard. A Kecleon, perhaps? The green side had pictures of different fruits and seeds, as well as sticks and rocks. The purple side had some strange orbs and discs. I had no idea what Pokemon used CD-ROM’s for, but I was sure I’d find out eventually.
On my left hand side was a building shaped like the head of some pink Pokemon. April told me it was shaped like an Audino. I decided to have her tell me what that place is for later. I wanted food first, and I didn’t want to distract my tour guide.
Further on, there was a building shaped like a large golden mask. A black Pokemon floated around inside. The whole place was rather creepy. There was also a small building reminiscent of a Pelipper. There were some of those inside, as well as a multitude of Pidgey. It looked like a Post Office. Perhaps that’s what it was.
We stopped in front a large strange building of sorts. It didn’t look like any Pokemon in particular. It was more or less a large dome made out of various pieces of wood, metal, and other such items. Above the door, there was a picture of a Spinda, and two other Pokemon that looked like garbage. I didn’t wan to be rude, but they really did look like it. That’s because the picture showed the heads of a Trubbish and a Garboder.
“This is where we’re gonna be eating?” I asked, giving her a confused look.
“Yeah. Why? Is something wrong?”
“Nothing, its just the Trubbish on the sign has me a touch worried.”
“Oh! Hee hee, they aren’t part of the Café! This place has two functions. It’s a place to eat, and a place to trade salvaged things with other teams! It’s a remarkable building actually. Come on; let’s go inside, I’m starving!” And with that, she pulled me into the Café.
The place was remarkable. It was brightly colored on the inside and there were numerous bits and bobbles hung all over the store. The whole effect made the place look larger on the inside than it really was. The left side of the Café had tables and chairs spread out everywhere. There were numerous Pokemon scarfing down fruits and other strange meals. Some had drinks, and they looked pretty good. That side also had a counter towards the back, where a Spinda was giving orders to some Pokemon through a hole in the wall. I couldn’t see who they were.
The right side of the store held only a stall. The Trubbish and Garboder from the sign were there talking to a couple of Pokemon. The Pokemon that they were talking to actually looked pretty cool. They had scarves on, and one of them had a scar. I couldn’t tell what the Pokemon were. It seems that so far I can only remember some of the Pokemon’s names. April pulled me out of my thoughts and led me to the counter and the Spinda in the back.
“Hey, Spinda, how’s it going with you?” April said, laying her arm on the short countertop.
“Oh, you know, going with the flow, dancing with the rhythm of the world,” the Spinda responded. It was clearly a female. And it didn’t seem to be able to keep still. It wandered back and forth like she was confused. And I couldn’t stare at her eyes for too long; the swirls in them were making me dizzy. “So, April, who’s your friend?” she asked, nodding at me.
“Right! This is Sparky. I met him out in the woods. He has no idea how he got there. The poor fellow seems to have come down with amnesia.”
“My name is Shane, not Sparky!” I said with a little edge to my voice.
“Oh ho! Interesting! A Pachirisu, alone and confused in the middle Foggy Woods. Apparently he remembers his name, but Shane is quite an odd name though. But your not here for pity are you? No, you two want food! And I have food! What d’ya want?” Spinda pulled out a pad and a piece of charcoal, eager to take our orders.
And she thinks my name is odd, if anyone’s the odd one here, its her. April gave her order to the hostess, and she quickly jotted it down on her pad.
“And what would you like?” The Spinda was staring at me, and her twirly eyes were making me uncomfortable.
“Uh-” I started.
“Just get him the same thing I got,” April told her. She looked at me, “Trust me, you’ll love it!”
And so with our orders in, Spinda turned and put the paper through the hole in the wall. A blue hand took it, and yelled out orders to two other Pokemon inside. Through the hole, I could tell that the three were some kind of monkey. The one doing the cooking was a Pansear. A Pansage was putting the finishing touches on some other dishes, and the blue one, a Panpour, was cleaning up some of the countertops. Spinda, still at the front counter, was now hurriedly making some drinks. Apparently, that’s what she was in charge of doing. April interrupted my observations.
“You gonna sit there and stare at them all day, or are we gonna find a table?” My face went red, which of course wasn’t visible, thanks to the fur, and I followed her to an empty table.
“So this place is supposed to be really good?” I asked, hoping to spark a conversation.
“Tee hee! The best in town! The food is great, but their Gummi smoothies are to die for!” April appeared to be lost in the thought of the food. The small talk continued for another fifteen minutes. Then Panpour came out, carrying two dishes which he set in front of us.
“Spinda will be right out with your drinks,” he said, and then returned to the kitchen. I looked down at the food. The dish was beautiful to look at. In the center was a neat little pile of seared Aspear Berries. Around that was some freshly sliced banana, and the whole thing was resting on a bed of chunky applesauce. My mouth was watering just looking at it. I looked over to April, who was already half way through her dish and hadn’t even noticed I wasn’t eating yet. She looked up for a second.
“Well don’t just stare it, eat it! You want your berries to get cold?” I looked down at it again. I picked up a berry chunk and plopped it into my mouth. It was bracingly sour, but the cooking of it had brought out sweetness in it. It was remarkably delicious, but I was hesitant to continue. In this form, I couldn’t exactly use utensils, and none had been provided anyways. I took a peek at April. She wasn’t using silverware either. She was hardly even using her paws. After a moment of thought, I followed her example and just ate however I could. A couple minutes later, Spinda brought out our smoothies.
“Two Yellow Gummi Smoothies for Emolga and company!” Spinda announced, giving a yellow drink to us both. “Will there be anything else that I can get you?”
“No, were good. Thanks again!”
“You are always welcome. Just pay up at the front counter when you’re done, kay?” Spinda then teetered her way back to the counter. I looked at the drink. It looked tasty, much like everything else that was served tonight. I took a sip, and I was blown away. This drink was the most wonderful thing I’ve ever tasted! Well, it probably was anyways.
“Holy Arceus above, this drink is magnificent!” I said, starry-eyed.
“Ya, they are. But you better appreciate that one. Those things are pricey, and I don’t need you getting hooked on ‘em.” April said after taking a swig of the smoothie. Ignoring the statement, I finished the rest of my food. Both April’s and mine's faces were covered in applesauce, so we spent the next ten minutes licking ourselves off.
This is how cats clean themselves, isn’t it? Well April is doing it too, so I suppose it isn’t weird for me then. I hope. After we were done and the applesauce was cleaned off our fur, we resumed some small talk. It was mostly me going on about how great the meal was. Unfortunately, a Raichu that had been staring at us for the past few minutes decided to interrupt. He rudely took a seat next to April.
“So April, who’s you new friend?” Raichu said, glaring at me.
“It’s none of your business, Raichu. Now buzz off.” April clearly didn’t like him. I glared back at that giant electric mouse.
“Oh, I’m hurt, sweety. I thought we had something.” Raichu tried to get closer to April, but she scooted closer to me.
“The only thing I’ve ever wanted with you is a restraining order. Now go away!”
He tried getting closer. “Don’t be like that! Come here y-”
“She said to go away. So I suggest you leave.” I growled at him.
“Oh, we got ourselves a tough guy here, now don’t we? Heh heh. Stay out of our business shorty!” He flicked his tail at me.
“No, because now it is my business. April is my friend, and she clearly doesn’t want you.” April looked at me warningly.
“Sparky, stop! We don’t need any fighting, and-” she tried to say.
“It’s too late for that now. Sparky, was it? You and I have something to settle. You need to learn to stay out of other people’s affairs.” He stood up and walked over to me. He picked me up by my tail, which not only hurt, but it was very demeaning.
“Put me down! Or I’ll...Or I’ll-”
“Or you’ll what, Sparky? Shout me to death?” Raichu gave a hardy laugh.
“My name is Shane. And I’ll do this!” I concentrated the electrical power in my cheeks, and tried to shock the ruffian as hard as I could. By now, the whole Café was watching us. Raichu laughed again.
“That actually tickled! Bwahaha!” He turned to April. “And, sweety? Get yourself a better bodyguard!” He laughed again, and chucked me over his shoulder. I hit the floor and skid a couple feet. Raichu and a couple other shady looking characters left the Café laughing. I got up to my feet, wincing as I held the arm I had landed on.
“Oh my gosh! Are you okay?” April said, as she ran over to me.
“Ya, I’m fine, but that guy was a real jerk.”
“Raichu. The guy’s been chasing me ever since he was a Pikachu. He thinks he’s all tough now that he’s bigger than everyone else, and thinks he can get everything he wants, including me. But I shouldn’t worry you about that; you need help with that arm.” She turned to Spinda and shouted “Hey, can I get an Oran berry over here?” Spinda nodded and pulled a blue berry out from under the counter. She tossed to April, who then shoved a piece into my mouth. It was pretty good, and I was feeling better already. She handed me the rest, which I ate as we talked.
“Why didn’t anyone else deal with him? I didn’t see any other Pokemon willing to help. Even Spinda stayed behind her counter.”
“Sparky, did you not just feel what he did to you? Nobody else in here can stand up to him. So he gets to do whatever he wants. But it isn’t just him.”
“What do you mean? Are there others that bully you?” I was concerned now. I had finished my berry, so I was able to stand unaided again.
“No, they don’t bully me. Just him. But there are certain problems with being the only Shiny Emolga around. I get bribe after bribe, gift after gift, all in attempts to win me over. But nobody sees anything but my pretty copper fur. Nobody likes me for who…for who I really am…” She was suddenly on the verge of tears now. I wanted to comfort her, but I wasn’t sure what I was supposed to do.
“Hrm. Come on, let’s pay for the meal and get going. I think we’ve seen enough of the town for one day.” I led her to Spinda, and April paid the bill, a whopping 1795 Poke, with some coins she had hidden in a leather pouch under her left wing. Together, we left the restaurant after I made sure Raichu wasn’t waiting outside the door. She mostly led the way, but I tried to comfort her, as she was still very sad. After about a half an hour of our slow walk, we reach a humble house. It looked like a large wooden igloo. The paint was rather messy on the outside and consisted of a metallic red color and splotches of yellow. The door was just tall enough for me and April to walk through. On the inside, it was painted a cozy peach and white color, and wasn’t as messy. There was a bed of straw and hay on a raised wooden platform in the back, as well as small pool of water to the left of it. It seemed to be fed by a small spring. There was only that single bed in the house.
“I’ll sleep on the floor; the guest should have the bed,” April mumbled, obviously still upset.
“No, no, I’ll sleep on the floor. There’s no need for that.” I said, and sat on a soft patch of dirt at the base of the platform which held the bed.
“Are you sure? I don’t want to impose-”
“Don’t worry about! Seriously, it isn’t a problem.”
“Well, all right, if you say so. But it’s late, so we should get to sleep. We have a big day tomorrow.” April jumped up to her bed, and plopped onto the hay. “Maybe the town elder will be able to tell what’s wrong with you. He knows everything, or so it’s told.”
“An elder? I can’t wait to meet him then, if you think he can help me.”
“Then it’s settled: we’ll visit him first thing to tomorrow.” She yawned. “But for now, we sleep.”
After saying good night, I laid on the ground and attempted to fall asleep. But the ground was hard, even though it was the softest part, and my mind was racing. Eventually, I thought to rest my head on my tail, and it was a very good pillow. After my brain had settled down and my exhaustion got the better of me, I fell asleep.
Suddenly, I was in a dark but colorful area. It was a dream, I was sure of it. I felt a presence, and I saw a dark shape, but I couldn’t make it out. Was it saying something? I couldn’t tell. Then, everything went black…
Dun dun dun! Who's the person from Shane's dream? Heck, I don't even know! Just kidding. Similar to the first PMD game, but not entirely. Anyways, it looks like April has some issues after all. I guess it isn't all fun and giggles to be a shiny Emolga.
Anyways, this is a very long chapter, so I hope I don't bore you to death.