I wrote this book to tell the whole story, the truth from start to finish with no glossing over’s like the news media would like to tell you. My names is White, Champion of the Isshu league and while a lot of you think you know my story you really only know what you’ve seen thanks to Channel 1. The true story has to be told regardless of the good or bad, the people have to know what really happened three years ago atop the Isshu League and the events leading up to it. I was there from the start when Team Plasma showed their face to the world and I was there to put them down at the end to. But events didn’t go like you heard, and I suspect you bought this book because you wanted to hear the real story…I wrote my jounry down in a journal…thought maybe when I had kids I could let them read it if they ever got the notion to become a Pokémon Trainer. I was asked by a friend to get this published, to ease it out of my system. He thought it’d be therapeutic I guess and maybe he was right but at this point it’s hard to tell. The journal was filled with a lot of needless info, battles I had out in the woods against people who had no right to own a Pokémon, training with my own team and the like and for the sake of this being concise I’ve left them out. Only the cold hard facts and the most important events are here, bits of my journal along with a fairly well summarized history of events remain.
Day 0: The Start of it All
It was a long day I guess, a lot of prep work and festivities I really wasn’t interested in. My mother had cleaned the house…a rare event for sure and invited Cheren* and Bel’s* families over for a huge meal. We had shabu shabu or we would have if my mother had remembered to buy the ingredients at the market instead of the three packs of smokes and a handle of Gray Ducklett. We ordered out for Sinnohese and the adults had some small talk while Cheren and I went upstairs to play a little wii. Bell came to but we’d long since asked her not to play, it was too embarrassing and consoling her took more time then we could really afford to over a simple game. Besides, it was the last day Cheren and I would get to spend together and while Bel was a sweet heart I’d wanted the last day before we were forced out on our adventure to be the two of us. I accepted the reality of the night like I’d accepted the news that I’d be traveling across Isshu for Dr. Araragi, with quite acceptance. We ate in relative silence, my mother on her second glass of soda and Gray Ducklett while Cheren’s parents talked on and on how great it was we were finally grown up and taking our journey. Bel’s parents were oddly silent. The night ended with a drunken rant from my mother how she couldn’t understand why I didn’t want to go, said it was a family business to go out and make a name for yourself on the road. She said I reminded her of Dad, and despite being well armored against the slings my mother shot out from the bottle…it still stung.
My mother was an ex-Pokémon trainer, having traveled across Isshu about twenty years ago. She’d met my father in Nimbasa, he worked at the local Gym’s power grid to earn enough to send himself to college though he was a trainer on the side. Not sure how the meeting went or how the relationship evolved from there, they weren’t on speaking terms for most of my childhood and when my father left to Johto for some big lawsuit against a criminal organization known as Team Rocket my mother seemed to have finally lost what little was holding together. She’s lost at the Pokémon Championship three years in a row, falling to the then Champion each time by a technicality whatever that means. When she’d come home to settle down for good with my father, I think the fire she had as a trainer slowly sputtered out and died. The drinking came after I was born; the strain on the family from my father’s firm forced us to move out of Nimbasa and into Nuvema Town. The move was hard on Mom according to Dad, and while they got on well in the new town, it wasn’t the vibrant or bustling atmosphere that reminded her of the last vestiges of her traveling days. She’d tried to set up a Gym but the League declined her application several times, and the fee’s started adding up. I thankfully don’t remember those days well, only going off stories from Dad before he left, a warning from him I think…I didn’t take it. Even if my mother was a drunk wishing for days long past she was still my mother, that had to count for something right? Bel’s family had tried to get me to move into their house a few times but there was just no convincing me…I think it’d have been the end to her if I left like Dad, but was close enough to see and deal with every day. I honestly couldn’t do that to her so I waited it out. I figured with the money my dad had saved I’d be able to go to college, get a job and move far away from Nuvema Town, maybe move to Johto and find Dad. But that hope was dashed on the rocks before it was ever fit to sail.
A letter came from Dr. Araragi a few weeks ago, something about her Pokedex project and how she wanted me and the other two “kids” in the town to assist her, she made it sound like a summer job but it was the last shovel of dirt for my mother. Most days she’d come home from the market, make something to eat and sit in front of the T.V watching clips from her fights at the Elite Four or the new contests. Screaming and cursing were the paint she used on her canvass of self loathing but when I’d got home from the final day of school she’d washed up, the usual cigarette that hung from her mouth was missing and the house was clean. The meal on the table didn’t smell like rotten cabbage and spoiled meat…something was up for sure. We sat and ate in silence but I knew she wanted to tell me something, but all she did was slide that letter in front of me before moving to clean the dishes. I sat there and read the note…cursed her and cursed the good Doctor for all they were worth. She was in a good mood because all my evading the life of a trainer had all come to one complete and ugly train wreck in the well intentioned desires of the good Doctor. I was sure a note had been sent to the Doctor in my handwriting, my mother had long ago learned to forge everyone handwriting in the Town, and my struggling and rebellion was at an end. To add to it this was the first time in years I could remember my mother looking happy, did I really want to send her back into the wallowing mire that was her booze filled replay of her life? At the end of the night and a phone call to Cheren I decided I couldn’t do that. He was always there for me, Cheren, and despite his serious attitude he had a caring nature deep down. His parents had immigrated to Isshu before he was born from Kanto, something about wanting to get away from the hustle and bustle that was quickly consuming the once rural region. Kids always picked on him at school growing up for his accent and his glasses…I got into a big fight on the playground with Chandler Halley after he’d knocked the poor kid over. Got three days suspension and a black eye for my trouble but you should have seen Chandler. After that Cheren and I became great friends and though we never really knew when it happened Bel joined us in our merry little gang. She was a bit of a cry baby back then to, always worrying over things and losing her place which seemed to drive Cheren a little loopy but looking back on it we had fun.
They’d received letters to, but unlike my case they’d took the bait and leapt at the opportunity to see Isshu and receive a Pokémon of their very own. They both knew my feelings on the issue of becoming a Trainer, I think that’s why I hadn’t’ heard anything from them before my mother dropped the bomb on me and while I had yelled and blamed Cheren at first, I quickly apologized and felt like a right jerk for doing it. The next couple weeks flew by, my mother relapsing every now and then into her usual self but over all life at home had become oddly pleasant. It was like living in a dream and there were a few times there I really thought that my father would come walking through the door and we’d be a normal family again. That didn’t happen and for a few days there I sat in my room and brooded. Cheren and Bel tried to get a hold of me the whole time but I actually ended up breaking my phone. When I finally came out of my funk they were both pretty upset but they never really said anything else about it to me. Cheren and I went and got lunch and Bel came over that night to fail horribly at the latest game I’d gotten for my wii. My mother woke with a vengeance the next day, screaming and throwing bottles around how I wasn’t preparing for my journey, that I needed to train and learn everything I could because if I didn’t I’d never win the Championship. Me going to Victory Road was never part of this deal, but deep down I knew exactly why my mother was so excited but I’d hoped if I kept my mouth shut she’d have let it blow over until I was out of the house and out of the Town before she had the notion to bring it up. I was wrong once again. She’d dug up all her old manuals, training techniques and various strategies. She gave me detailed maps of every location she could find though it wasn’t much help. She drilled me night and day for the next two weeks, denied me sleep and food when I got an answer wrong and there were a few times I really thought she’d finally lost enough sense to hit me. She never did, and at times she’d revert to that kind self I’d seen when the note came which made the whole ordeal more jarring.
The last few days leading up to that horrible dinner were the worst I ever think I had to go through. My mother remained in the house and denied Cheren and Bel from coming over until the very last day before we all took off. She told me they’d be my rivals that I’d have to fight against them if I wanted to be the Champion, that a Champion didn’t have friends or anything like that. They had their Pokémon and themselves and that was it. They were isolated from the world and from their past, that’s what made them strong. I guess by the end, deprived of sleep and food and on edge from the mood swings my mother went through like the weather in Goldenrod City that the crazy seeped through a little. My best friends were going to want to fight, that was the whole point of being a trainer but I guess I figured Cheren and I were to close for that and Bel was too much of an air head to really go through with it. I guess that’s why the comment at dinner finally did me in. The last straw my strung out mind could take and it caved like one too many Bouffalant on a wooden bridge. It was the first time in ten years I cried and after the already awkward dinner I think it was too much for Cheren and Bel’s parents to bare. They took their leave after thanking my mother for dinner but by that time she was in full swing, screaming and throwing things about the house. No one looked me in the eye as they left. That’s how I spent my second to last day at home, listening to my mother’s rampage downstairs while I curled up in bed, the weight of the last three weeks finally crashing down on me like an avalanche.