Moments after Leaf had smacked her best friend on the back of the head, she watched as Fire laughed lightly at the action. She was quite sure the boy before her received the message behind her gesture, however as something formed behind his eyes that she couldn’t really put a finger on. Despite her annoyance with him, staying angry at Fire for long periods of time for Leaf was highly difficult if not impossible.
"Geez, you really are hard-headed" the brunette teased with a small smile as she sensed a kind of guilt emitting from her friend.
The words that came from Fire’s mouth had Leaf staring at her friend for a moment as the comment sunk in. A pink tinge formed on her cheeks as a sudden feeling of bashfulness crept over her. Smiling gently at Fire as she heard the sincerity in his voice, almost as if he was pleading with her to understand, Leaf reached over to him, placing a hand on his head and running her fingers through his hair in a soothing fashion. “Thank you, Fire” she told him, speaking in a softer tone than usual as she gave him a smile.
Leaf was clearly shocked to hear his plan, and Fire felt a laugh bubble up inside him. Holding it back, he turned his head only to smirk at her, and it was then that Fang nudged the girl towards him. Watching her flushed face draw near caused Fire to flash another smile, reminded of the old days when their mothers would hint at a possible romance between the two close children, a claim both Leaf and Fire would quickly deny - the separation of their joined hands following immediately. He ducked his head, but Leaf’s voice urged it back up.
"It’s the least I can do. And besides, we’ve done this plenty of times before, haven’t we? Walking each other home after some disaster,” he joked.
The flashbacks just didn’t quit. Dropping from low trees, receiving scratches from thorns, getting pecked by moody Pidgey…Fire was usually the victim in those cases. Leaf, of course, was the rational one who accompanied him back into the streets of town with eyes threatening to spill tears as she reprimanded him for being such a big dummy. Fire and his mother would even check her for wounds because she looked so pained.
"I can’t stand to know you’re hurt," Fire sighed as he turned to his Vaporeon.
Fire was back in Vermillion City with a newly developed taste for adventure. Obtaining a badge wasn’t his focus this time around, in fact, he hoped to avoid the ever so charming Lt. Surge. The plan was to stay in the area for a few days to enjoy the city’s highly anticipated summer festival.
The trainer strolled slowly through the rows of vendors, Pikachu perched happily on his shoulder. Every now and then Fire would point a sight out to the small Pokémon who would squeak delightedly or sigh in awe. The afternoon sun was warm on his skin, and he could smell the tang of sea salt mixed with something exotic he couldn’t quite place. Having been anchored to Kanto for so long, he quickly noticed the foreign scent, but Pikachu had caught it before him. Pikachu turned his head in the direction of the smell, and with cheeks nearly touching, Fire could feel the slight sting of electricity emitted by the curious Pikachu.
"Smells great. Lead the way, pal."
Their search was short, but the pair couldn’t exactly see their destination. Instead they saw a cloud of people blocking the front of the vendor━ clearly Fire and Pikachu were not the only ones lured by its Sweet Scent.
Fire bent down to scoop up his Pokemon, fearful of an oblivious wanderer stepping on the little guy, but Pikachu shot off, charging daringly into the crowd. “Oh, great.” He pushed onward, trying to squeeze his way through, but his eyes were aimed in the wrong direction. The familiar cry of his Pokémon caused him to lift his gaze. There, perched upon the edge of the vendor’s cover, was his partner gesturing enthusiastically to the display beneath him.
"Pikachu, get down from there━ HEY!”
Somebody knocked him to the front of the growing swarm, Pikachu landed on his head, and the delicious smell that had pulled him there splashed his face. Fire could only stare at the mouthwatering food before him as he tried to collect himself. He glanced up only to find another eye-opening sight.
"Yo, check out that dude’s hair. He looks like a…a…that Sinnoh Pokémon. Monfernape?” Fire squint his eyes in thought━ Pikachu tilted his head in confusion.