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Thread: Awareness (PokeShipping, PG-13)

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    Default Awareness (PokeShipping, PG-13)


    http://marvelscalemilotic.deviantart...ness-442569845

    This fic is also on DeviantArt: http://marvelscalemilotic.deviantart...llery/48703627

    This story is a sequel to "Seaking Catching Day", which is a sequel to "Working On A Dream" but you can also read this as a stand-alone fic without reading "Seaking Catching Day".

    Chronology:
    1. Working On A Dream
    2. Seaking Catching Day
    3. Awareness

    Author(s): AquaMilotic
    Title: Seaking Catching Day
    Fandom(s): Pokemon
    Pairing(s): PokeShipping (Ash x Misty)
    Status: Finished
    Rated: PG-13

    Chapter list:
    1. Ash's Birthday
    2. Austyn from Sootopolis City
    3. Breakthrough

    CHAPTER 1 - ASH'S BIRTHDAY

    "Happy birthday to you! Happy birthday to you! Happy birthday, happy birthday, happy birthday to you!" Misty and Brock sang, as they gazed upon their friend blowing out the sixteen candles on his cake all at once.

    "And now it's time for my presents!" the birthday boy said.

    "Here you go, Ash!" Brock said, while handing over a big, green box with a blue ribbon. The teen from Pallet untied the ribbon as fast as he could, after which he tried to tear the box apart as soon as he could, curious as he was to see what gift he would receive from his friend.

    "And, what do you think of it?" Brock asked, while Ash held something in his hands. It was a Playboy magazine, with a scantily clad photo of Elesa on the cover.

    "Um... Brock, I don't think I'm the right audience for this, this is more something you'd enjoy," Ash said softly. "You can have it back, then you got a nice present! And that while it's not even your birthday!"

    While Brock was gushing over the naked women in the magazine, Misty was thinking. "He became sixteen today, and still hasn't changed a bit! He doesn't even realize that Brock just bought that Playboy because he knew Ash would probably give it back... And he still doesn't seem to understand anything about love... I've been waiting six f*cking years for him now! Why do I have to be in love with this guy" She and her beloved boy from Pallet know each other for six years now and travelled together for five of those years. Unfortunately for her, her best friend was a late-bloomer. He did show physical attraction to her several times, but no signs of romantic awareness yet. And that while she was longing for him for six years!

    After another laughable League failure for Ash, he, Brock and Misty were on their way to Sootopolis City, where Misty's friend Austyn lives. The two met four years ago, during the Catch-A-Seaking Contest in Johto. Austyn was six years older than her friend from Cerulean City, which meant that the twenty-two year old Sootopolis-native often had valuable advice to offer to her younger friend. Their friendship could even be compared to that between Ash and Brock, a good friendship between an older, experienced person and a young one. Misty usually saw her during Water Pokemon-related tournaments in which she and her Whiscash participated.

    Then, the thought was interrupted. "Misty, do you have a present for me as well?" Ash asked, not realizing how rude this was.

    "Yes, I do..." Misty said, while grabbing her mallet from her backpack. Then, she realized violence wasn't the solution to her frustrations and put it back in her backpack. Then, she took the real present. "Here you go, happy birthday!" she said calmly, while handing over a big yellow box with a red ribbon.

    The Pallet Town-native opened his second present of the day. "Hey, there's a lot of stuff in that box," Ash said. "New underpants? Why, Misty?"

    "You wear the same ones everyday, your mom said so. I'm giving you these, so you can wear different ones each day," Misty said.

    "He's not gonna wear 'em," Brock murmured, while he was enjoying some more naked women.

    "Brock is right," Ash replied. He took the next thing out of the box. "A picture of Misty and me smiling? What's that supposed to mean?"

    "That I want you to always cherish me," Misty said. "And that I'll always cherish you."

    "But I already do, you're my best friend," Ash protested, not understanding that Misty wanted more.

    "Some people are late-bloomers, that's normal, but will he ever learn?" Misty thought.

    "Pikapi!" Pikachu shouted, while grabbing Ash's next present out of the box. "This better has to be some food!" the hungry boy from Pallet moaned, while a roaring sound came out of his stomach.

    "And, what is it?" Brock asked.

    "It's a cake!" Ash screamed happily. He saw that the strawberry cake had bride and groom figurines on it, representing the feelings Misty felt, but that Ash didn't understand. "But why are those boring toys on it?"

    "I give up," Misty thought. “He’s not gonna get it anytime soon... But there’s got to be a way... Maybe Austyn could help me...” A tear went down her face, which was noticed by Brock. And so, while Ash and Pikachu were eating from their giant cake, Brock took Misty apart and went to a small, separate room in the Mossdeep City Hotel, so they could talk while having some privacy.

    “Misty, what’s wrong?” Brock asked.

    “Nothing!” Misty screamed, while the tears got more frequent. She didn’t want to tell Brock about her feelings, because he might tell Ash about it, which isn’t the way Ash should find out about that.

    “Come on, Misty. If you’re crying, something must be wrong,” the former Pewter City Gym Leader said. “Is it because Ash still doesn’t understand that you love him?”

    “I’m not in love with Ash, it’s none of your business!” Misty snapped, while barely being able to stop herself from smacking her friend in his face.

    “Misty, don’t deny it, it’s so obvious... All those times you got jealous when other girls liked him... All those times when I saw you being sad when you tried something romantic Ash didn’t understand... Really, you can’t hide it from me anymore. Is there anything I can do for you?”

    “The only thing you can do for me is f*cking off and leaving me alone! This is none of your business! And you’ll never understand, because all you do is sleep with hookers and read Playboy!” the redhead screamed, while her face was shrouded in more and more tears.

    “Misty, most people would get mad about the way you just treated me, but I won’t. I know what’s bothering you, and I want to help you,” Brock said. “So shall I help you to get Ash in bed for some night time action?”

    “Brock, this isn’t about sex!” Misty said with a slightly calmer tone. “Anyways, could you please never tell Ash that I love him?”

    “Of course I won’t, that’s up to you,” Brock replied.

    “That’s a relief,” our heroine thought, while still being uncomfortable about the way Brock tried to sexualize everything. “But do you know any way to make dense little kids understand what love is?”

    “Well, not really, I’ve been trying to explain Ash things about sex for years now, and he still doesn’t seem to get it,” Brock complained. “But do you think he has feelings for you?”

    “I’m not sure...” Misty whispered. “He showed jealousy when those guys on the Orange Islands were flirting with me, but that’s five years ago... Since then, he travelled with many other girls... I don’t know if he still loves me...”

    “Well, I do know a way for you to find out if he does,” Brock proposed.

    “Really? What is it?” Misty asked, while a slight smile appeared on her face.

    “All you have to do is make the past happen again,” Brock suggested. “Get another guy to flirt with you, and then see how Ash reacts to that!”

    “The idea is good, but where am I gonna find another guy who wants me?” Misty asked, while Ash made a loud burping sound after finishing his cake all by himself.

    “There are plenty of men in this city, and also hotel guests,” Brock said.

    “But isn’t that like... using them?” Misty asked. “That’s just mean, giving them false hope...”

    “Not really... Those two guys on the Orange Islands also fell for you by themselves, but you didn’t use them. Ash getting jealous was just a side-effect of their behaviour. And you also didn’t give them false hope, you never showed interest in them,” Brock explained, based on what he heard five years ago. Back then, he didn’t travel through the Orange Islands with Ash and Misty. Instead, Tracey was with them back then.

    “I guess I could try... But my sisters always told me I’m unattractive, and no one understands Ash’s taste in women... Do you really think many guys will be interested in me?” Misty asked.

    “Sure they will! Those Orange Islands guys liked you for your looks, and if a dense guy like Ash can see you as hot, anyone can,” Brock answered.

    When leaving the small room, Misty saw a familiar face. A new hotel guest just put his luggage in his room and walked towards the big eating room, where Ash was waiting for his friends after eating his big cake. “Hey, look, it’s Danny!” Misty said. “What a coincidence!”

    “Who was Danny again? I know he sees you as hot, Ash told me how much he hates that guy many times, but where is he from again?” Brock asked.

    “Danny is the Navel Island Gym Leader, and a member of the Orange Crew,” Misty explained. “I think he’s too old for me, but he was really flirty five years ago, so maybe he can help me to get a reaction out of Ash... Maybe it can even get Ash to think about love!” And so, Misty and Brock entered the eating room again, where Ash noticed an acquaintance he didn’t like.

    “So, Ash, how was your cake?” Misty asked.

    “Awesome, thanks! Food is always the best birthday gift!” Ash shouted.

    Then, Misty knew she had to play it strategically. By talking extra loud, she hoped that Danny would notice her and greet her, hopefully getting a reaction out of the guy she loves. “Ash, tomorrow, we’re going to Sootopolis City, is there anything you still wanna do today?”

    “I don’t know, just relaxing, Misty,” Ash said.

    And then, Danny, who didn’t notice our heroes yet, heard the names ‘Ash’ and ‘Misty’. He immediately walked up to the table where they were sitting. “Hey, Misty, long time no see! That outfit sure looks hot on you!”

    And that was exactly what Misty wanted to hear. Now, she could see what Ash had to say. The boy from Pallet Town was bursting with anger. He didn’t know why exactly that comment angered him so much, but he knew it did. “Why do you like her so much? She’s my best friend, get away from her!” Ash screamed. “She didn’t like you five years ago and she still doesn’t like you now!”

    “I think it worked!” Misty thought, while showing a big smile to Brock. Meanwhile, Danny tried to reason with the birthday boy. “Is she your girlfriend or anything?”

    “No, girls stink!” the embarrassed kid said. “Why do you ask that again?”

    “Like I said five years ago, you always hurt the one you love!” Danny said. “It’s obvious that you and Misty like each other a whole lot!”

    “Then why are you constantly hitting on her?” Ash asked. “If you want her to be with me, why are you trying to take her yourself?”

    “Well, if you don’t love her, why are you so bothered by my flirtiness?” Danny asked. “If she’s not yours, I should be free to take whatever girl I want!”

    “I don’t know...” Ash whispered. “I just really don’t know... What’s going on with me? Why am I acting this way every time another guy acts this way towards Misty? Maybe... Maybe Danny is right? Maybe I might be in love with her? But how does being in love feel? I’m so confused...”

    “Ash, what are you thinking about?” Misty asked, hoping that her beloved was thinking about what Danny said.

    “That’s none of your business, these are private thoughts! Just let me think!” Ash sneered, much to Misty’s enjoyment. After all, if he was indeed having his first romantic thoughts, of course he would keep those a secret at first.

    “I don’t know how being in love feels... I do know that I feel this way about Misty for six years now, while I never saw other girls that way... Sure, Misty is hot and I always thought so, but I felt the same about Giselle and Melody six and five years ago, but that was different... Misty just really means something to me, unlike those two... Maybe I really am in love... Nah, it’s probably just because she’s my best friend...” the boy from Pallet Town thought.

    Meanwhile, Danny decided to give up on flirting with Misty for the time being, knowing that she wasn’t interested. Instead, he went to the beach to do some windsurfing. While Brock gave Pikachu and Misty’s Gyarados some Pokemon food, with ketchup on it for the yellow mouse, Misty was enjoying every minute of the sight of her beloved Ashyboy having deeper thoughts than he ever had before.

    “And why is Misty acting this way around me? Sometimes, she seems to think of me the same way Brock sees all those police officers and nurses, I don’t know... But if that would be really true, wouldn’t she at least say something after such a long time?”

    “Ash, Brock, I have to be away for a bit, I’m going to do a phonecall to Austyn. Brock, will you watch Gyarados for me?” Misty asked, while pointing at her Pokemon, who was floating in a little pool in the big room. “And could you please give me some privacy?”

    “Sure, Misty!” Brock said, while giving Ash’s Pikachu some more ketchup.

    And so, in her hotel room, Misty ringed the video phone. A few seconds later, a young, blonde-haired woman appeared on the screen. “Hi Misty!”

    “Hi Austyn, how are you?” Misty asked.

    “Good, I just finished proofreading my article for ‘Hoenn Pokemon Magazine’ about a local band that uses Water Pokemon’s moves as musical instruments,” Misty’s friend said.

    “That’s so cool!” Misty said. “Anyways, tomorrow, we’ll be leaving Mossdeep, so I think we’ll reach your house tomorrow in the evening, is that okay with you?”

    “Sure,” Austyn said. “And Misty, I see in your eyes that you’ve been crying. What’s wrong?”

    “Oh, it’s Ash...” Misty moaned. “He turned sixteen today, and he’s still as dense as always... I tried talking about it with Brock, but he only talked about sex as usual...”

    “Yeah, tell me about it... I’m not even good-looking, and he was constantly gushing over my boobs the last time I saw him,” Austyn complained. “And the top I wore that day wasn’t even showing that much cleavage...”

    “What? Austyn, you’re really beautiful, you’re way prettier than my sisters and all those other crappy models!” Misty complimented.

    “I don’t agree, but still, thanks,” Austyn said softly. “Anyways, I’ve never had a boyfriend, and I’ve only had some crushes, but I don’t think I’ve ever met a guy who I feel the same for as you feel for Ash. I want to help you, but I’m not sure if I’m the right person...”

    “Why not? You’re empathetic, kind and smart! If there’s anyone who can help me without being pervy, it’s you!” Misty said. “You don’t have experience, but at least you have the empathy to think about how other people feel about things... You understand how I feel, and you can use that to make Ash realize what love means!”

    “Thanks, Misty. You’re a real friend,” Austyn complimented. “Alright then, I’ll see if I can talk to Ash and maybe steer his mind into the right direction.”

    “Really? Awesome!” Misty shouted. “He did get jealous again today when some guy was hitting on me, but he just doesn’t understand why he feels that way...”

    “Oh well, at least you know he still loves you like he did five years ago,” Austyn said.

    “True,” Misty agreed.

    Then, Brock entered the room, even though Misty asked for some privacy. “Hey, Austyn, you sure look hot today!”

    “Brock, you said you wouldn’t bother me! Go away!” Misty snapped.

    “It’s okay, I got used to it...” Austyn whispered. She felt really uncomfortable, but she was too shy to even think about snapping like Misty did. It would also make her feel mean.

    “I heard you’re still single, are you interested in a nice guy with lots of knowledge about what to do in bed?” Brock proposed.

    “Not really, I want someone who I can have an emotional connection with, I want more than just sex,” Austyn said, causing Brock to leave the room with tears in his eyes.

    “Austyn, sorry for that, I should’ve locked the door,” Misty moaned. “I really thought Brock would give me some privacy this time!”

    “Well, you know what they say, real perverts don’t change,” Austyn laughed. “He’s a sick guy, but he’s also one of the funniest people I’ve ever met. But I’d still never consider a relationship with him!”

    “Good, no girl deserves a guy who only thinks about sex,” Misty said. “You deserve someone like Ash, but then without the denseness.”

    “And you deserve that too, I just really hope he’ll break out of that denseness stage sooner or later...” Austyn said. “Anyways, I’ve got to proofread and check another article now, see you tomorrow!”

    “Bye, see you tomorrow!” Misty said, while waving. Then, she ended the phonecall and went back to her friends, who were waiting for her in the big dinner room.

    And so, late in the evening, our heroes were all in their separate beds. “Tomorrow I’m gonna see Austyn again, I’m really curious how she thinks she’s going to help Ash to understand love... But I have faith in her, she helped me with so many things and I’m sure she can do the same again. Even if Ash won’t realize his feelings, at least she can make him take a step in the right direction. And I’m sure she’s gonna try her best, she’d never let me down,” Misty thought. “Gyarados had some food, and Danny gave Ash some food for thought. I never thought I’d actually think this, but I’ve never been so happy on a birthday of Ash before!” Then, she fell asleep.
    Last edited by AquaMilotic; 31st March 2014 at 9:24 PM.

  2. #2
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    Default

    CHAPTER 2 - AUSTYN FROM SOOTOPOLIS CITY

    The next day, our heroes were sitting on Misty’s Gyarados’s back, on their way from Mossdeep City to Sootopolis City, where they would visit Austyn. It was a warm, sunny afternoon as usual in the tropical Hoenn summers.

    "It’s so scorching hot…" Ash complained.

    "Well, tonight will be even hotter, because we’re gonna see Misty’s hot friend!" Brock cheered.

    "Brock, why do you constantly have to focus on her looks? You know she’s not interested in you!" Misty snapped.

    "Um… Because she’s hot?" Brock asked, thinking about a certain chest.

    "So? She’s a person, not a set of boobs!" Misty screamed.

    "True, but I like boobies!" Brock protested.

    "See, Ash? That’s not what love is, I hope you won’t become like that," Misty said, while pointing at Brock, who was reading in his Playboy magazine again.

    "Well, yeah, that’s just seeing her as hot. But what’s the harm in seeing people as hot?" Ash asked.

    "Nothing, just as long as you don’t objectify people," Misty answered. "Also, Ash, did you think about what Danny said yesterday?"

    "I’m not saying," Ash said in an attempt to avoid the topic, which made him think deep again. "What if I’m actually in love with Misty? I’m probably not, but what if I would be? She probably wouldn’t be interested in me, I’ve upset her so often… I don’t know why she cries so often and why I upset her so often, but I don’t know why… I just don’t understand! But oh well, she’s just my best friend and I don’t think that what I’m feeling is love…"

    Then, Misty rudely interfered with his thoughts. "Ash? Ash? Ash?"

    "Oh, sorry, I dozed off a bit," the childish sixteen year old mumbled, while Pikachu sat on his lap. "Pikapi!"

    "No, you were thinking about something. I'll shut up and give you some time to think," Misty teased,

    "No, I wasn't!" Ash shouted, while knowing Misty was right. "This is so hard... I feel attracted to her looks, she's definitely hot, I can't deny that to myself... I remember when I first saw her in a bikini at that beach six years ago... Wow! And then that mermaid outfit when she was in that play... But does that make me a second Brock? Am I going to be just like Brock? I don't want to end up as some sex addict..." Then, he decided to ask the man himself. "Brock, why do you read Playboy? And why do you treat all Nurses Joy and Officers Jenny that way?"

    "Because they are hot," Brock answered. "They turn me on, and I enjoy that feeling. Haven't you ever felt that way about a girl?"

    "Ehhh... Not really," Ash lied. "But when you see a girl that way, do you feel more than just seeing them as hot?"

    "Sometimes," Brock said. "Most of the time, I just think a girl is sexy. But I've also been in love a few times. For example, do you remember Lucy from the Battle Pike? That was someone I was really in love with. Oh, Lucy..."

    "Brock, do you think you're more interested in girls than most guys your age, or is your behaviour normal for someone your age?" Ash asked.

    "Well, alright then, I'll come clean with what everyone aside from you already noticed. I see girls as hot more frequently than most other guys," Brock admitted, much to Ash's relief. At least the Pallet Town-native finally knew that seeing Misty as hot wouldn't turn him into a second Brock. Then, his friend asked him an unexpected question. "Why are you asking me all these questions?"

    "Um... I don't know?" Ash muttered, not wanting to be open about his thoughts yet.

    "I think I know," Brock said. "You're thinking about Misty, right?"

    "Not really," Ash lied, while a big blush started to glow on his face.

    "Why are you blushing, Ash?" Misty asked, knowing what was going on.

    Then, the immature Pokemon Master in making exploded. "I don't know, just shut up about it! I don't know why I'm having these thoughts and emotions!" Ash screamed. Then, Misty and Brock decided to respect their friend's privacy and didn't ask any questions, giving him the time he needed to think and sort out his emotions.

    "I just really don't know..." Ash thought. "I feel different about Misty than about all my other friends, but I just don't know if I'm in love... I just don't know how being in love feels... Maybe everyone was right when calling me a late-bloomer? Maybe I'm just confused by others telling me how to feel? Maybe I'm in love, but don't realize it? I just don't know! I'm so sick of everyone talking about it to me and confronting me with it! I just don't want to think about it and just focus on Pokemon! But now I have to go to Misty's friend and listen to talk about emotions, feelings, boys and Brock being a pervert while I'm bored and have no one to battle with..." Before he even realized it, tears were streaming down his face.

    And so, hours later, around eight o'clock in the evening, Gyarados finally reached the giant crater that covered the city. After a quick dive underwater, the Pokemon reached the surface again, giving our heroes a good look at the peculiar city. No city in Hoenn or any region was similar to this. After an underwater volcano erupted and created a giant crater, Sootopolis City was founded inside the hollow crater. Through the gap in the crater top, the city received moonlight, sunlight and a view at the sky. Main attractions were the Cave of Origin, Juan's Sootopolis City Gym and the view of the stars in the sky at night. Since three years, the headquarters of 'Hoenn Pokemon Magazine' was also settled here. Close to this building was Austyn's house. She was able to work at home most of the time, receiving articles by email and correcting errors. As a hobbyist, she also sometimes wrote for her magazine about music. In her free time, the blonde-haired beauty trained with her Whiscash often and participated in Water Pokemon-related tournaments, which is also how she met Misty four years ago during the Catch-A-Seaking Contest.

    After reaching the shore, Misty thanked her Gyarados for the ride and called him back into his Poke Ball. Then, our heroes walked up to the house in the west of the city. In a pissed mood, Ash rang the doorbell four times to tease Misty's friend. Then, she opened the door. "Hey guys, it's so nice to see you!"

    Before Misty was able to greet her best friend, Brock immediately grabbed Austyn's right hand. While staring at her chest, he started to flirt as usual when seeing a girl. "My dear, you look so beautiful and sexy again as always! And fate brought us together in this beautiful city, would you like to look at the sky with me together this night before going to sleep? And then I can join you in your bed if you feel cold and give you lots of hugs!"

    While the shy Austyn quickly stepped back a bit, Misty apologized for her friend's behaviour. "Sorry, he can't help being pervy," she said.

    "It's fine, I'm used to it... He does it all the time, he can't control himself. He can look, but not touch," Austyn said softly, being too shy to openly state that she didn't feel comfortable about the way he was staring at her chest when talking to her instead of her face.

    "If he ever dares to touch you, I have my mallet ready," Misty laughed, hoping to end any slightly flirty thoughts Brock might have.

    "How was your trip?" Austyn asked, while our heroes took place on a comfy couch.

    "Fine, no problems at all," Brock said, not telling Austyn about Ash's frustration outburst. "Just as fine as your legs," he said, while pointing at that what was shown by her short jean shorts.

    "That's good to hear, and thanks," Austyn said. Even though the flirting made her uncomfortable, she still enjoyed getting compliments. "I just wish they wouldn't have such a naughty undertone," she thought.

    "And how are you three doing in general?" Austyn asked.

    "Perfect, just as perfect as your belly!" Brock said, while looking at the bellybutton that Austyn's white top exposed. "Ash, Misty and I are having some nice journeys, and I recently met some great breeders and doctors who taught me a lot.

    "And how about you?" the Sootopolis-native asked Ash.

    "Fine," Ash admitted, even though Austyn saw in his eyes that he cried earlier that day.

    "Ehhh... Alright then," Austyn muttered. Misty always praised her friend for being so empathetic and insightful. And of course an empathethic girl like Austyn immediately detected that something was wrong. However, she decided to not talk about it, especially when Misty and Brock were also there. "Maybe it's because of everything Misty told me about Ash thinking about love, I'll see if I can have a private conversation with him later..."

    Meanwhile, Misty didn't answer the question, because she and Austyn already had lots of phone contact. Then, Misty's friend grabbed a trophy and showed it to her friends. "Look, Whiscash and I won this yesterday!"

    "What's that?" Misty asked. Her friend didn't bring it up in the phonecall they had one day ago.

    "It's a prize for the annual Whiscash contest in this city. It's a competition where Wallace and Juan judge the Whiscash of participants to look at how well their trainers took care of them," Austyn explained. "The Whiscash that made the best impression gets a trophy. What do you think of it?"

    "It's big, just as big as your gorgeous breasts," Brock squealed, while staring at the slight bit of cleavage Austyn's top was showing. Then, Misty decided to interfere and grabbed a wooden mallet from her backpack, smacking Brock on the head. "Don't you dare to objectify my best friend like that!"

    "Misty, stop!" Austyn screamed, while trying to pull her friend away from the pervert. "It's nice that you want to protect me, but doesn't this go a bit too far?"

    "Well, his comment went too far as well, he got what he deserved," Misty said calmly.

    "Could you please not do that when he does this again? This just isn't worth it, I can handle him myself," Austyn begged.

    "Okay then," Misty moaned, knowing that Austyn wasn't assertive enough to truly make Brock change his behaviour. "Now she'll just let him go through with this because she doesn't want to hurt his feelings..."

    "Wow, I'm sure glad that I probably won't become like this... Brock is truly exceptional when it comes to this," Ash thought, while Pikachu was still silently laughing about how funny he thought Brock's pervy behaviour was.

    "Hey, I have something to show too," Ash said. Then, he held up an old Badge he received six years ago. It was the Cascade Badge, something Ash always kept as a reflection on his friendship with Misty. He never got to finish his Gym Battle back then, but saved the Cerulean City Gym, after which the Sensational Sisters handed over a Badge. Despite that, it was still a Badge from the Gym Misty used to be part of, making the item special for him. He felt a sudden urge to talk about Misty a lot in a positive way, like many people do when having feelings for someone.

    "Wow, that's so beautiful," Austyn said, knowing why this was a special item for Ash. "I think Misty is very happy that you always keep this with you! She once told me that you keep old Badges at home, did she even know that you always have this one with you?"

    "No, and she wasn't even supposed to know," Ash said with a shock. While showing the Badge to Austyn, he didn't even realize that Misty and Brock were sitting next to him.

    "Well, it's still beautiful that you keep such a memorable Badge with you," Austyn complimented. She decided to not ask more questions about it, even though she wanted to know more about why he had the Badge with him.

    "Just as beautiful as your eyes," Brock complimented. This time, the compliment wasn't about sexiness, but about beauty, relieving Misty and making Austyn happy, causing the blonde to thank him.

    "Brock, this is so awesome!" the redhead said. "Finally a non-sexual compliment, that's the first time you said something like that to Austyn without a sexual undertone."

    "Well, thanks, but I certainly didn't lose certain desires," Brock said. "Austyn, my offer still stands!"

    "Thank you, but the answer is still no," Austyn said, making the former Pewter City Gym Leader even sadder than he already was.

    "Aww, I feel a little sorry for him, do you think he'll ever find a girlfriend?" Austyn asked.

    "Well, not as long as he acts like this..." Misty moaned.

    "Why not?" Brock asked. "Don't you think I'm attractive for girls?"

    "I don't know if girls will like someone who can't take 'no' for an answer," Misty sneered.

    "And even if you find a girlfriend, are you sure you can stay faithful to her?" Austyn asked. "If you fall for other girls so easily, the temptation to cheat might be very big for you..."

    "Of course I can!" Brock lied, knowing that he'd never be able to resist his strong urges.

    "I doubt it," Misty teased.

    "I knew it, boring love conversations while I'm sitting on the couch doing nothing..." Ash moaned. "This is so boring... And the worst part is that we're staying here for more than just one night..." Then, he got an idea. "Hey, maybe Austyn would like a battle with me! I'll challenge her tomorrow!" Then, he already went to bed, being too bored by the current conversation to stick around. Ten minutes later, the others heard both him and his Pikachu snore. After that, Brock went to bed as well, leaving Misty, Austyn and Whiscash alone in the living room.

    "Austyn, congratulations with your prize! Because of all the stuff with Brock, I didn't get a chance to say that yet," Misty said, while looking at the giant pool in the living room, where the fish Pokemon was freely swimming around. "You took good care of Whiscash!" She walked up to the water and petted the Water-type, who enjoyed the praise and attention.

    "Thanks, I'm also really happy with it! I'm so proud of Whiscash, we trained so hard to get him in a good shape! I'm not into beauty stuff and contests like this, but we were training anyways for other tournaments, so we were able to participate in this without any preparation," Austyn said. "We mostly did it for the prize money, which I donated to charities."

    "Yeah, but you never took the Catch-A-Seaking Contest trophy you deserved four years ago," Misty said. Back then, Misty received the prize. Austyn caught an even bigger Seaking, but never told the judges, because she felt right about the idea of Misty winning. "If I would be more competitive, I could get way more prizes and money, but that's just not in my personality. I enjoy seeing others happy, that makes me happier than taking everything myself."

    "That's nice, but you deserve so much more than you take," Misty said. "And you really underestimate yourself! You think you're unattractive, but you're really beautiful! And you think Whiscash did all the work for your prizes himself, but you're the one who guided him through that! You're an amazing person who did many awesome things, you should take more credit for that!"

    "I disagree, but thanks," Austyn said softly. She felt sad about going against her best friend, but she couldn't just pretend to agree and lie. "Anyways, it's bed time, good night."

    "Good night," Misty said, while going to the guest room, where Ash and Brock were already asleep. Then, when no one was around anymore, Austyn took her clothes off, jumped in the small pool and hugged Whiscash. "I'm so happy that I have a Pokemon like you, Whiscash! And I don't want to take any credit in any victory you achieved, I think you did it all by yourself."

    "Whiscash Whis Whiscash!" the Pokemon mumbled, telling his trainer that he loves her and that he hopes that she will become more comfident someday.

    "Thanks, Whiscash," Austyn said. She went out of the pool, dried her body with a towel and put on her pyjamas. Then, she turned off the lights, brushed her teeth and went to bed.

  3. #3
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    CHAPTER 3 - BREAKTHROUGH

    Three days later, after lunch, Austyn felt a burning desire to talk to Ash and help Misty. "Ash, there's something I was hoping to talk to you about sooner, but I didn't really get an opportunity. Misty told me about some struggles you're having now, and I think I can help you. Are you willing to talk about it?"

    "No, I hate boring love conversations! I just don't want to think about it! I just wanna battle someone!" Ash moaned.

    "Alright then, I have a deal for you. I'll battle you, and if I beat you, you'll talk to me about this. If you win, I'll shut up about this," Austyn proposed.

    "I don't know... Oh well, I'm sure I can beat you, and it's the only way to get some battling during this boring trip!" Ash shouted. "Let's go outside and battle now!"

    "As you wish," Austyn said. She opened the door and led Ash, Misty and Brock to the water in the city. After all, the biggest part of the surface in the city was covered by water. Meanwhile, she took Whiscash out of his pool and carried him by herself, as he didn't like being in a Poke Ball.

    "This is a one on one Pokemon battle between Austyn from Sootopolis City and Ash from Pallet Town! Both trainers will use one Pokemon! When one Pokemon is unable to battle, the other one wins! Trainers, choose your Pokemon!" Brock shouted. As usual when Ash had unofficial battles, Brock served as the referee.

    "Whiscash, I choose you!" Austyn shouted, while throwing the Poke Ball she kept Whiscash in when carrying him from her house to the water. "Cash!" the Pokemon screamed energetically, while landing in the water.

    "Pikachu, I choose you!" Ash said, while his yellow friend walked up to the shore.

    "Begin!" Brock shouted.

    "Pikachu, let's start with your Thunderbolt!" Ash tried. The yellow mouse jumped in the air and tried to shock the opponent. However, even though the water conducted the electric shock, the Ground-type opponent didn't take any damage.

    "Whiscash, Spark!" Austyn shouted. Normally, an electric attack would only leave light damage on Pikachu, but now Whiscash jumped out of the water and struck Pikachu while still being wet, the electric mouse suffered a great deal of damage. And so, the mouse was almost done for in just one hit!

    "Pikachu, can you go on?" Ash asked. After hearing a happy "Pikapi", Ash told his Pokemon to try an Iron Tail. However, the ineffective attack failed miserably, as Whiscash used his whiskers to grab the tail.

    "Awesome, Whiscash!" Austyn complimented. "Now use Rock Slide!" Hard rocks came falling out of the sky, striking the Electric-type, who was incapable of avoiding the attack.

    "Pikachu!" Ash screamed, while his Pokemon was still stuck in the whiskers.

    "Pikapi!" the yellow mouse shouted, realizing he couldn't win this battle.

    "Whiscash, end this battle with your Surf!" Austyn commanded. After throwing Pikachu out of his whiskers, the fish caused a tidal wave to crash down on his opponent, who got washed up on the shore defeated.

    "Pikachu is defeated, Whiscash is the winner! Victory goes to sexy Austyn!" Brock declared.

    "Pikachu, are you alright?" Ash asked, while his Pokemon opened his eyes again.

    "I think he just needs some rest, I don't think he needs to go to the Pokemon Center," Brock said.

    "That's a relief," Ash said. "And Austyn, do I really have to talk about this?"

    "Sorry, Ash, but I believe we had a deal..." Austyn answered.

    "Okay then, we'll give you two some privacy," Brock said. "How about it if Misty and I do some sightseeing in the meantime?"

    "That's nice," Austyn said. "Have fun!"

    "Thanks, good luck!" Misty said, while walking off to the market together with Brock. At the same time, Austyn went back to her house, along with Ash.

    While walking home, Whiscash received some tight hugs from his trainer as a congratulation for his sweet victory. “Your Whiscash is really strong!” Ash complimented.

    “Thanks,” Austyn said. “He’s a hard worker and an amazing battler!”

    "Anyways, why do you want to talk about my love issues?" Ash asked.

    "Because I want to help you to understand what you feel," Austyn responded. "And it could also help Misty."

    "Alright then, I'll explain the situation," Ash said. "I always saw Misty as hot, even though I have trouble saying that to her face. And I also feel something that I don't feel for my other friends. I have the feeling that Misty means more to me than May, Dawn, Iris and Serena, but I don't know what..."

    "So you're in love?" Austyn asked.

    "I don't know... I don't know how being in love feels, I don't understand love. I just hope I won't become just like Brock..." Ash moaned.

    "Well, do you sometimes get jealous when other guys like Misty?" Austyn asked.

    "I don't know if it's jealousy, but when other guys hit on Misty, I always get pissed off!" Ash snapped. "I just don't want her to give other guys attention! Maybe it's because I want to spend time with my friend?"

    "Well, if it's because of friendship, you'd also feel that way when other guys like your other female friends. Do you also feel that way about Drew liking May, for example? And about Conway flirting with Dawn?" Austyn asked.

    "No, not at all, I don't mind that," Ash said.

    "And how does it make you feel when Brock hits on me, or on other girls?" Austyn wanted to know.

    "I don't really care about that, I just hope I won't be like that when I'm his age," Ash explained.

    "So you only feel that way about Misty and no one else?" Austyn asked.

    "Yes, Misty just means more to me than others," Ash admitted.

    "Well, then you're obviously in love, you just don't realize it!" Austyn concluded.

    "I always denied that," Ash said. "I always denied it when people like Tracey said that, but I always felt like I was lying, even though I didn't realize that I love Misty. But I just never accepted the fact that I'm just really in love with her," he admitted. "I suppose you're right, why else would I be that jealous?"

    "And what are you gonna do now?" Austyn asked.

    "I don't know..." Ash moaned. "How am I supposed to tell Misty? She'll never like me back, she must hate me... She and I argue so often, and she even used her mallet on me a few times..."

    "Really, she doesn't," Austyn said. "Even some married couples argue, it's normal. And Misty is really short-tempered, it's nothing personal. She also hits Brock all the time with that thing, but she doesn't hate him. She's just sick of the way he treats women, she thinks they deserve better than being objectified by your pervy friend."

    "But just because she doesn't hate me, doesn't mean Misty loves me back..." Ash complained.

    "Are you blind?" Austyn asked. "Really, Misty loves you too, isn't that obvious? Don't you remember all the moments when other girls liked you? Don't you remember how that pissed you off? Misty told me all about that!"

    "Well, yeah, she was pissed off, but wasn't she just trying to protect me, just like she does when protecting women against Brock?" Ash asked.

    "Not really, her reaction is different," Austyn said. "It's way more emotional. And besides, do you know how Misty reacts when someone says that she loves Ash? She's just battling her feelings to deny it, because she knows it's true. And Misty told me how she feels about you."

    A smile was put on Ash's face. However, he still had some issues. "How am I supposed to tell her this?"

    "Well, tell her how you feel, and ask her if she wants to be your girlfriend," Austyn said. "Let's practice, let's pretend that I'm Misty and that you want to confess your feelings. What would you say to me?"

    "Wow, confessing must be difficult, there must be a reason why a smart, mature person like me doesn't get love..." Ash thought. After imagining Austyn as his beloved redhead instead of as her blonde-haired self, he tried to start an awkward confession. "Misty, there's something I have to tell you... You know how you always called me unromantic and stupid? Well, do you wanna be unromantic and stupid together with me as my girlfriend?"

    "No, no, no, that's not how you confess!" Austyn said. "You've got to be more romantic, or at least not so negative! Misty would feel really insulted if you would say this to her!"

    "Okay then," Ash said. He tried to think of confessions he saw in his life. Then, he knew it. "Hey, Misty, you are so hot, you have awesome boobs!" he said, while holding Austyn's hand. "Would you like to date me, share the bed and marry me?"

    "What was that? Why were you imitating Brock?" Austyn asked, while getting her hand away from Ash.

    "I tried to think of confessions I've seen, and Brock had so many confessions, I thought it'd be worth a try," Ash explained.

    "And have you ever seen Brock seducing a girl with that?" Austyn asked.

    "Not really... Two or three girls liked him back, but that never turned into anything serious..." Ash moaned. "But Brock always said he's so romantic, so I thought this would be romantic!"

    "Well, Brock isn't romantic, I can tell you that," Austyn said. "He's just being pervy. Never comment on a girl's chest, unless you're in a relationship with them and are comfortable enough for that!"

    "Then what am I supposed to do?" Ash asked.

    "Well, just tell Misty how you feel, without being pervy or negative," Austyn said. "You just have to try practicing until we get it right."

    "Okay, I can do this," Ash thought. Then, he tried again. "Misty, I love you!"

    "Awesome! That's how it's done!" Austyn complimented. "Was that really that hard?"

    "Well, I never understood love, so I thought it would be more complicated..." Ash said.

    "And do you think you're ready to tell Misty this?" Austyn asked.

    "Sure, I guess," Ash said.

    "I don't think so, Ash," Austyn said. "You smell kinda dirty, and I don't think it's very romantic to smell like that when confessing your feelings to a romantic girl like Misty..."

    "Well, I never change my underwear, I'm wearing these underpants for six years now," Ash admitted.

    "Gross!" Austyn screamed. "Do you have any fresh underwear with you?"

    "Yeah, Misty bought me some new boxers for my birthday recently," Ash said. "But these feel so comfy, I just never feel like taking them off!"

    "Then you're gonna change your underwear right now!" Austyn screamed. "I can't take this smell!"

    "Oh yeah? Then why can Misty and Brock take it without complaining all the time?" Ash asked.

    "Because they're used to being around that smell for six years," Austyn said. "Could you please just put some other underpants on? I beg you..."

    "Fine..." Ash moaned. Then, he went to another room, changed his clothes and came back. He even put on deodorant for the first time in his life. "And, how do I smell now?" he asked Austyn, while opening the door of the living room again.

    "Awesome! Exactly the smell Misty deserves for your big moment," Austyn said.

    "Thanks," Ash said. "Hey, what do you actually do as a trainer? Do you never travel and just stay in your house all the time? That's got to be boring..."

    "Well, when I was a kid, I befriended Whiscash when helping it to beat some crooks," Austyn said. "Then, I started taking parts in contests, as a Coordinator. However, those weren't really my thing, I don't like the way Pokemon get judged for looks instead of inner strength and beauty. Then, I decided to travel around and participate in small contests, like the Catch-A-Seaking Contest. I also participated in the Hoenn League once and won," Austyn said. "Anyways, after eight years of traveling, I went back to Sootopolis City and started writing and editing for the magazine I work for now."

    "A League victory? Wow, you're an amazing trainer! Why didn't you say that earlier?" Ash asked.

    Austyn started blushing. "I don't like talking about that League victory, it makes me feel so arrogant..."

    "You're not arrogant, you're the least arrogant person I've seen," Ash shouted. "You never take credit for anything you win, you always give the prize to others or pass all credits on to your Pokemon! Sure, your Pokemon do most of the work, but you guided them in the right direction to win!"

    "Thanks, but they did everything, really," Austyn said, talking down about her own role in the success. "All this talk is making me miss traveling so much... I wish I could go on a journey again with Whiscash and rekindle those amazing moments..."

    "Austyn, you know how you've always just been Misty's friend, while there was some more distance between Brock and you, and between me and you, but I think we're pretty good friends now too," Ash said.

    "Yeah, I agree," Austyn said. "You might be dense at times, but you're a good person and I can see that."

    Then, the doorbell rang. "We're back!" Brock said, while Austyn opened the door.

    "And, Ash, is there something you'd like to tell me?" Misty asked, while walking into the living room.

    "Misty, I love you!" Ash confessed, while spontaneously hugging his beloved. "Thanks to your amazing friend, I finally realized and accepted it!"

    Tears from happiness came out of Misty's eyes. "I love you too, Ash, and now, you're finally ready to understand it!"

    "So are we boyfriend and girlfriend now?" Ash asked happily.

    "Yes, we are!" Misty said, while the tears stopped. Then, she gave Ash a kiss on his right cheek.

    "That's so sweet!" Austyn thought, while tears were streaming out of Brock's eyes. "It's not fair! Why can't I ever get a girlfriend?"

    "Um... Because you're a pervert?" Austyn suggested.

    "No, I'm not!" Brock protested, despite knowing Austyn was right.

    And so, hours later, Ash, Misty and Brock left Austyn's house. "Bye, thanks for letting us stay!"

    "Bye," Austyn said, while waving. She held her Whiscash in her arms, who waved with his fin. "Whis Whiscash!" A tear went down Austyn's face. "What am I doing here?"

    Two minutes later, our heroes were walking to the shore, where Misty would let Gyarados out of his Poke Ball. "We sure had a great time!" Ash said. "And I finally confessed my feelings to Misty!"

    "The same goes for me," Misty said, after giving Ash a kiss on his cheek, causing a heavy blush.

    "Yeah, I just wish I could've had a nice time in bed with Austyn," Brock moaned.

    Then, Ash turned around and saw a girl holding a blue, fish-like Pokemon running at them. It was Austyn! "Hey, did you forget something, or what? Why are you running at us like that?"

    "I want to join you," the blonde-haired girl said, after some heavy gasping. "Could I travel with you three?"

    "What?" Misty asked. "And what about your job?"

    "I can take my iPad with me and still write and proofread," Austyn said.

    "But why do you wanna travel with us?" Brock asked.

    "Talking to Ash just made me realize how much I miss being a Pokemon trainer," Austyn explained. "Is there anything I can do to join you three?"

    "You can join us, but you'll have to share the bed with me," Brock suggested.

    A few tears appeared in Austyn's eyes. "Is there really no other way? I just can't do that..."

    "No, I was kidding, you can join and keep your virginity," Brock said. "I was just teasing."

    "Are you two also okay with that?" Austyn asked the couple that just got together that day.

    "Sure," Ash said. "It's always nice to make new friends!" His yellow Pokemon agreed. "Pikapi!"

    "And you're already my best friend, it'd be awesome to have you around all the time!" Misty said.

    "Really? You guys are amazing!" Austyn cheered. "Whiscash!" her happy Pokemon squealed from happiness.

    "But are you ready to travel now?" Brock asked. "Don't you need to pack your bags first?"

    "Of course I do, but I had to run after you three to reach you before you went away from the city," Austyn explained.

    "That's fine. Take your time, we'll wait here," Ash said.

    And so, an hour later, Gyarados and Whiscash were swimming next to each other. While Gyarados carried Ash and Misty, Whiscash had Austyn and Brock on his back. "Brock, you're a complete pervert, but I still think we can be friends," Austyn said. "You're still a kind-hearted person."

    "I'd love to be friends!" Brock shouted. "Will there be benefits?"

    "No," Austyn said, much to Brock's dismay. Then, she shifted her attention to her Pokemon. "This is the best day of my life, Whiscash! Misty got together with Ash, and we're travelling again! And I'm also glad you like travelling!"

    "I hope you're also happy to have me on your back, Whiscash!" Brock added.

    "I'm not happy that my trainer is getting objectified, but I'm too happy to care. Going on adventures again, frequent battling and becoming stronger, facing new challenges... Awesome!" the Water/Ground-type thought. He nodded, while letting out a squeal from joy. "Whiscash!"

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