Tuesday, November 29, 2016

SoulSilver Jacklocke Part 1

You can read the rules of ActionJ4ck's Jacklocke challenge here.

I opened my eyes to the sight of a tired and confused Professor Oak. After suddenly realizing that he overslept, an event that I'm sure is a common occurrence for a man of his years, he proceeded to introduce himself to me. Again. I told him that I am a boy. Again. I told him my name is Jack. Again. And finally, the dream ended as it always did: with me being shrunken down and then waking up alone in my bedroom.

I sighed loudly. I'd been having that dream every single night since Craig and I agreed to go our separate ways. It was mutual. Really.

Somehow I managed to force myself out of bed and shuffle over to my desk. I rubbed my unkempt facial hair but made no effort to trim or shave it. There was no point. It's not like I was going anywhere this month. I stumbled down the stairs of the tiny house that I bought for my mother and myself with the last of my Pokemon League champion money. Like every morning, she greeted me with a burst of enthusiasm that I simply was not in the mood for. It was probably her way of trying to get me to cheer up each day. It never worked.

"Hi Jack! You're finally awake."

"Mph," I mumbled. "I had that dream again."

"Your friend Lyra was just here."

"She's not my friend. All my real friends are dead, Mom. I told you this."

"She was playing hide-and-seek with her Marill."

"Good for her. It must be nice to have a partner Pokemon and no responsibilities."

"Oh, I almost forgot! Our acquaintance, Professor Elm, was looking for you."

"What did he want?"

"He said he had a favor to ask of you."

"He better not be sending me on another Pokemon journey," I spat as I procured a flask from nowhere and took a long swig of some form of hard liquor. "I've retired from that crap."

I stepped out my front door and shot a venomous look at Lyra and her Marill, who were playing tag or something around town. There was something about that pair's happiness that just made me want to kick a child's football into the woods. I quickly concluded that my sour attitude was probably the effect of having not drank enough this morning, so I took another swig from my flask. It didn't fix my attitude, but at least now I knew for sure that that wasn't the reason.

I stumbled into Professor Elm's laboratory and was once again greeted by somebody who was way more cheerful that they had any right to be in front of me.

"Hi Jack!" he exclaimed. "I've been waiting for you! Do you know anything about my research?"

"Does it have anything to do with bringing back friends from the dead?" I asked as I took another drink.

"As you know, Pokemon are carried in Poke Balls these days."

"I'll settle for erasing bad memories too."

"But before the Poke Ball was invented, people used to walk with Pokemon. Just like your friend Lyra does!"

"Where is this going?"

"Poke Balls are great because you can carry many Pokemon."

"That all die."

"But walking with Pokemon must have some advantages."

"Once again, I don't like where this is going."

"It could have something to do with how Pokemon grow or evolve..."

"Oh no."

"So I'm going to give you a Pokemon!"

"Son of a Bisharp."

"Can you walk beside this Pokemon, outside of its Poke Ball, to see if this brings any special feelings or bonds between Pokemon and people? The device over there has some Pokemon you could choose from..."

I was about to spit in his face and tell him the same thing that Wolverine told Charles Xavier and Erik Lehnsherr in X-Men: First Class, but an alert went off on the computer behind him and he turned away from me before I could launch any saliva or vulgarity.

"Oh, hey! I got an email!"

He read the email out loud and started talking about some friend of his and a Pokemon egg while I debated in my mind whether or not I could leave the lab before he turned around. As it happens I was incorrect, and Professor Elm turned around to face me again while I was quietly tiptoeing back out the door.

"Wait! I know!" he declared as I almost jumped out of my skin in surprise. "You can go in our place, right? Can we count on you? You can choose one of the Pokemon over there."

I looked over at the familiar sight of three Poke Balls side-by-side and my mind instantly flew back to the first day of my first journey, when I met the Pokemon that would come to be my best friend. Could this be the start of a new friendship? Perhaps even a greater one?

"Nope," I said as I took another swig and began walking away.

"Where are you going? The Poke Balls are in that device," hollered Elm, clearly not understanding my intentions.

I ignored him and took another step towards the door, but he yelled the same exact thing at me again.

And again.

And again.

And again.

"Mewsus, dude," I finally cried in annoyance. "Fine, I'll run your stupid errand. But I am not keeping that Pokemon and I am not going on a Pokemon journey."

Without even looking I grabbed the Poke Ball on the left and let it out.

"Alright," I said sternly. "Your name is Lockjaw and we are not getting emotionally attached."

He bit my arm in response.

"Good answer," I said but then shook him off because that actually hurt tremendously.

To be continued...

Read the rest of ActionJ4ck's Jacklocke challenges here.

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