Fandom: Pokémon
Rating: G
Pairing: TwinleafShipping - Barry x Dawn (Gameverse)
Summary: A snowball fight leads to a conversation about grown-ups and being there for each other.
A/N: This is the holiest of all my fanfics... my writer's block-killer. Anyway, Barry and Dawn are eight in this fanfic, so don't expect anything apart from cute fluff and childish conversations. Sorry for the rubbish title, I suck at coming up with those.

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Dawn sneezed for the third time in a matter of ten minutes, and wiped her nose on her sleeve. Just where was that Barry? He’d said that he’d be here by ten minutes ago, yet he was still nowhere to be seen. She shivered, and rubbed her mitten-clad hands together. She knew she should’ve gone over to his house instead, to make sure that he didn’t get distracted by anything.

Perhaps it hadn’t been such a good idea to arrange a snowball fight after all. It had snowed heavily the night before, and Dawn and Barry had excitedly agreed to meet up at the playground she was currently standing by, but she hadn’t really thought much about the consequences. What if she caught a cold? Then her mother would make her stay home and not let her go to school, which meant no seeing Barry and all her other friends, which also presumably meant no more fun for a few days. She should’ve listened to her mother and put on a thicker coat, as well as a pair of earmuffs, she thought, and berated herself for not doing so. But it wouldn’t do to dwell on things like this now, she decided, and turned her attention to the playground.

The playground had been transformed from a relatively normal place with ordinary apparatus to a complete winter wonderland, dazzling in all its snowy glory. Everything was covered in snow, from the swings to the slide, and the sheer whiteness of it all almost made Dawn’s head dizzy; snowflakes were still gently fluttering down from the soft grey sky above, strengthening the playground’s impression of a sparkling fairyland. It looked as if it had been picked out straight from her dreams – a glittering kingdom of ice, with a magical aura emanating from all its wonders. Even though this wasn’t her first time seeing something like this, the snow-white landscape still never failed to astound her with its pure brilliance.

Suddenly, the playground, along with everything else, vanished from sight, and she could feel the fluffy touch of gloved hands on her face. “Guess who?” A mischievous voice teased, as she let out a surprised yelp, and started to giggle.

“Ack! Barry, get off me,” Dawn replied, laughing, as she pried his hands away from her face and turned around to see Barry’s beaming face, playful and unpredictable as ever.

“Hey, Dawn,” he greeted, winking.

“Don’t scare me like that again,” Dawn told him in the most reproachful and adult-like voice she could manage, though secretly, she didn’t mind it whenever he did that, which was often; besides, he never listened, and probably never would, anyway. Of course, she could never let him know about this.

“Fine, Miss Grumpy Old Lady,” Barry said, pouting, making Dawn angrily reach out and attempt to slap him, but he quickly dodged, a cheeky grin having replaced the pout. “Well, anyway, come on – we came out all the way here this early in the morning for a reason, you know!” With that, Barry quickly grabbed Dawn’s hand, and started running. Dawn blushed slightly as she felt the touch of his hand under his gloves, and giggling, let herself be led into the playground.

“So what—” Dawn began once they reached the middle of the playground, turning to face Barry, but instead was swiftly silenced by a snowball to her face. She heard a gleeful laugh coming from a couple of feet away – Barry’s, unmistakeably. “Why, you…!” she said, wiping the snow off her face, though she could barely conceal the smile on her face.

“Gotcha!” Barry said in a playful manner, before he skilfully dodged a snowball from Dawn. “You’ll have to try harder than that!” he exclaimed, and hid behind the slide.

“Take this!” Dawn shouted, scooping up a handful of snow, shaping it into a rough sphere, and ran as fast as the snow underneath her feet would allow her to Barry, who slipped away and watched, muffling his giggles, as she threw the snowball at the now non-existent target in vain. “Hey! That’s cheating!” she whined as she began to chase Barry around the playground, armed with more snowballs, though to tell the truth, she couldn’t be any happier.

She wasn’t sure how to describe it, but somehow, just being with Barry made her happy – whenever she saw his eternally happy face, or his always cheerful voice, she couldn’t help but smile. There was just something about him. Maybe that was why she liked him so much, despite him being very annoying indeed on a number of occasions – of course, he always apologised, and he almost never meant any of the mean things he said, so it was hard not to forgive him, anyway. To her, he was the best friend she could ever have in her life. Even if he didn’t like apples like her, and always got angry for some reason whenever her favourite Elite Four, Lucian, appeared on TV.

They’d been best friends for as long as she could remember. She didn’t remember exactly how they’d first met, but they had, and that was the only thing that mattered to her. She knew that her mother and his mother had been good friends even before they were born, the fact that they lived next door to each other helping, which probably explained how she knew him from such an early age. He’d always been there for her, no matter what, even in the most upsetting and confusing circumstances.

Just then, she was quickly snapped out from her thoughts when yet another snowball came crashing into her face. “Hey! Concentrate!” Barry yelled from afar. “We’re having a snowball fight here!”

“That’s it!” Dawn shrieked, now regretting that she ever thought all those positive things about him. She sprinted towards the blonde boy with another snowball in her hands, revenge on her mind, only to trip up right as she reached him and crash into him instead, sending both of them flying, tangled up within each other. They both landed in a heap on the soft duvet of snow underneath them, giggling and laughing, as they continued to roll across the ground; Dawn had now forgotten everything about revenge, and all she could think about now was how she loved playing with Barry so much. She didn’t want to be anywhere else right now, nor be with anyone else.

The two children lay on the snow, soaked through, still clasping each other’s hand for warmth and comfort. Around them, the snow continued to fall, the feather-like flakes tickling their rosy cheeks. To Dawn, it was pure bliss.

“Hey, do you remember?” Barry suddenly said. Dawn turned her head towards him.

“Remember what?”

“This was where we got play-married, when we were three,” he said, pointing at a bench nearby.

“How could I forget?” Dawn replied, giggling. She still remembered the day like it was yesterday – they had gathered all their dolls and toys to the bench, and with her mother’s Glameow, Cecil, as the priest – though he was more interested in chasing the Starly away rather than paying attention to the three-year-olds – they had gotten ‘married’, and had proudly told their mothers about it, who had glanced at each other before congratulating them. “Now that I think about it, we were so little back then.”

“We are little,” Barry reminded her. “We’re still only in second grade; it’s just that you act like a thirty-year-old.”

“I do not!” Dawn replied, huffing. “Besides, being a grown-up is a better thing than being a kid. There are so many more things to do, like…”

“Like what?”

“Like… like getting married,” she replied without thinking. Barry snorted.

“Marry who? Me?” he asked teasingly. Dawn blushed, realising what she’d said.

“M-maybe,” Dawn replied indignantly. “If you’re really, really nice to me, I suppose. That’s why grown-ups get married, isn’t it?”

“Then why did your—” Barry began, but caught himself, and feigned a cough. “I guess that’s one of the reasons why,” he continued. “Whatever. Grown-ups are weird. Talking about politics and taxes and all that boring stuff as if it’s perfectly normal.”

“If you say so,” the bluenette replied, sighing.

“But… there are things that only come with being little, too.”

“Things like what?”

“Things like this.” With that, Barry shuffled closer to Dawn, until she could almost feel his warm breath in her ears, and gave her a quick kiss on the cheek. She blushed harder than ever before, her face heating up and becoming a fierce shade of red.

“W-what was that for?” Dawn stammered.

“To show you that there are some things only kids like us can do,” he replied, flashing yet another one of his cheeky grins. “No one would take us seriously if we do something like this, at our age. Right?”

“I… suppose so…” she answered, still shocked. She wasn’t sure which was more surprising – that Barry had just kissed her on the cheek, or that he’d come up with such a mature and logical explanation like that. Nevertheless, the fact still remained that Barry had kissed her, even if it wasn’t a real kiss.

“Will you go out with me when we’re older?” Barry continued.

“What?” Dawn exclaimed, flustered. “Well… I don’t know, don’t ask me!”

Barry laughed, and looked at Dawn’s face. She could see – no, feel – his bright, amber eyes staring into her own grey ones, as if they were searching for something within her soul. She stared back curiously, waiting for him to say something.

“I was just asking,” Barry said at last, looking back up at the sky. “After all, I’m going to have a lot of competition when I’m older, if I don’t reserve you first.”

Dawn cocked her head. “What do you mean?”

“Sometimes I wonder if I really do know more than you do,” Barry said airily.

“Won’t you tell me what you mean by that, then?”

“Of course not! Your mum would kill me if she found out, anyway.

“That makes me want to know even more, as a matter of fact!”

Barry started to laugh, and though she didn’t know why he was laughing, she couldn’t help but join in – his laugh was… infectious, to put it simply. Yes, that was a nice, grown-up word for it. “I wish things could stay the way they were right now forever,” Barry said, looking at his best friend once again. “I wish we’d never ever grow up.”

Dawn closed her eyes, and a smile crept onto her lips. Though she didn’t admit it, she sometimes wished she would always be a little child, too. After all, if she was a grown-up, she wouldn’t be able to have snowball fights with Barry like this, or lie on the snow with him without having anyone to stare at them. She wished she could hold on to this moment forever, for all eternity. That she could play this moment in her life over and over again, to no end.

“You’ll always be there for me, right?” she murmured. “You’ll always be my best friend?”

“Always,” Barry replied confidently.

She squeezed Barry’s hand, and he squeezed back. It was nice being a little child.