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Everyone got back into the car and headed over to Brocks place to go grab some dinner, the ride was rather uneventful and pulled over to his house in about ten minutes. Everyone got out and headed up the steps to his house and Professor Oak knocked on the door. Brock answered shortly afterwards.

Brock-Hey guys,

Ash-Hey Brock, sorry for coming over so often.

Brock-Don’t worry about it, I understand. We don’t want our new friends to be caught by trainers.

Tails-We deeply appreciate it, if it weren’t for you. We’d be sleeping on the streets, and would never get home.

Brock-Well, like I said. You each can stay as long as you need.

With that Brock noticed Knuckles.

Brock-I take it you’re this “Knuckles” I’ve been hearing about.

Knuckles-You guessed correct.

Brock-I saw what happened on the news. That Eggmans almost as crazy as freaking Team Rocket.

Ash-Yeah, and we’ve got some pretty interesting things to talk about.

Brock-I’ll whip up some supper.

Amy-Could I help? Chris’s mother taught me how.

Brock-Sure, I’d appreciate it.

Tails-Um, could you maybe make that soup you made last time?

Brock-You really liked that.

Tails-Yep, it was one of the best soups I’ve ever had.

Brock-Well I can’t say no to that. Sure, it should be ready in about an hour or so.

With that everyone was headed inside when Brock noticed Amber.

Brock-Hey Ash, who’s that Eevee?

Ash-Oh yeah, I forgot you haven’t met her. This is Amber, Tails partner.

Brock-Wow, talk about lucky; not only a shiny, but a female one. That’s extremely rare, nice job.

Brock Said as he petted Amber’s head.

Tails-Thanks, but I don’t plan on becoming a trainer. I still don’t really care for battles.

Brock-That’s understandable, now like I said. The soup should be ready in about an hour, so just get comfortable until then.

Ash-Sounds good.

So with that the gang made themselves at home and watched some TV. Meanwhile Brock and Amy got started with dinner. 

Amy-Okay, now what do we need for this soup Tails likes so much.

Brock-It’s nothing to overly complicated; some vegetables, some spices and a little bit of tamato berry for a little heat.

Amy-Tamato berry, what’s that?

Brock-It’s a type of berry; you do have berries in your world don’t you?

Amy-Yes of course, but judging by the name, I’m willing to guess we have completely different ones.

Brock-Yeah, that’d make sense.

Amy-So, do you have any?

Brock- Of course, I use it for Pokémon food.

Brock said as he picked one up and put it on the counter.

Amy-Hmm, I wonder what it tastes like.

Brock-They’ve got quite a bit of heat to them.

Amy-Hmm, back home I work with some hot peppers. Could I try a piece?

Brock-Sure.

Brock said as he cut a small piece of.

Brock-Here.

Amy-Thanks.

With that Amy took a bite of it, and boy was it hot!

Amy-WOW, I wasn’t expecting that much heat from a berry! This about as hot as a jalapeno! Only with a bit more of a fruity taste, kind of like a papaya actually.

Brock-Jalapeno, papaya, what are those?

Amy-*giggle* Now it’s my turn to explain.  A jalapeno is a type of hot pepper, and a papaya is a type of hot fruit. It tastes like this actually, only this is a bit hotter. 

Brock-Hmm, interesting. Anyway, let’s get back to cooking.

Amy-Right, what should I do?

Brock-First let’s make sure we’ve got everything we need.

Amy-Got it!

With that Brock and Amy gathered everything they needed and got to work. Brock got everything all cut up and Amy got everything measured out. Soon enough they got it all in a pot and began adding spices. Amy took a small spoon, dipped it in the pot and gave it a taste.

Amy-Mmm, I can see why Tails likes this so much. The broth is very flavorful, and that tomato berry gives it a nice after burn.

Brock-Glad you like it, now it just needs to simmer for a few minutes to let the vegetables soften.

Amy-Sounds good.

So with that they let the soup simmer and after a good 10 minutes it was all ready to be served.

Brock-Amy, could you let everyone know the foods ready?

Amy-On it!

With that Amy went into the living room where everyone was discussing something.

Amy-Everyone, soups on…literally!

Tails-YAY!!!

After saying that Tails blushed so much his white fur on his face turned pink.

Tails-Uh, I mean sounds good.

Everyone just laughed and gathered around the table, while Amber and Pikachu sat beside their trainers. Soon enough Brock came in with the soup and Amy carried a couple of smaller bowls filled with some Pokémon food.

Brock-Okay, you guys ready?

Tails-You know it!

It was then Tails noticed the bowl Amy sat in front of Amber.

Tails-Brock, what is that stuff?

Brock-its Pokémon food, I made it myself.

Amber looked at it and said.

Amber-It smells good.

Pikachu-Brock makes the best!

With that Amber took a bite and then said.

Amber-Wow, this is amazing!

Pikachu-See, I told you.

Tails-I’m glad you’re getting some dinner too. 

Brock-I could show you how to make it later.

Brock said as he poured everyone a bowl of soup.

Tails-That’d be great, but maybe you should teach Amy instead…She’s more experienced in the kitchen than I am.

Amy-Thank you Tails, I’d be happy to learn how to make food for Amber.

Amy said as she looked at her for a few seconds.

With that everyone got to eating everyone must have been hungrier than they thought because almost everyone had seconds and in no time the pot was empty. Afterwards everyone helped clear the table and then gathered in the living room.

Brock-Thanks for the help guys.

Ash-No problem Brock, you and Amy were nice enough to make that great soup. It’s the least we could do.

Brock-Anyway, earlier you guys said you had quite a bit to talk about. Like how’d you guys meet Amber, and what happened to that Eggman?

Ash-Right, I guess we do have a lot of explaining to do. You see…

With that the gang explained everything that happened with Eggman teaming up with Team Rocket, and how they met Amber.

Brock-Wow, I guess I did miss quite a lot. So, this Eggman’s teamed up with Team Rocket. That’s bad.

Ash-No kidding, those guys just don’t know when to quit.

Brock then turned to Amber.

Brock-I still can’t believe someone would just ditch their own pokémon like that. I mean that’s just plain cruel.

Tails-No kidding, I’m just glad she doesn’t have to go through that again. 

Ash-I’m sure you’ll make a fine trainer Tails, you deeply care for her feelings and she choose you after all.

Tails-I hope so.

Knuckles-You will, once you two get some practice. Both Eggman and Team Rocket better watch out. Plus with that translator we can have Ash and his friends help their Pokémon come up with plans.

Brock was confused and said.

Brock-Translator, what do you mean by that?

With that everyone realized they forgot to mention the translator to Brock. Professor Oak just laughed and said.

Professor Oak-Hahaha, oops I guess we forgot to mention that.  Earlier at my lab Tails made something extraordinary, a working Pokémon Translator.

Brock was shocked and said.

Brock-Really, guys is that true!?

Ash-You bet it is, I tested it on Pikachu and was able to understand him perfectly.

Brock-Tails, may I see it please?

Tails-Sure, let me just set it up.

With that Tails got out the translator.

Tails-There you go.

Amber-So, can you understand me?

Brock was just speechless and took out the translator and looked at it.

Brock-Wow, this is going to make my job as a Pokémon Doctor so much easier. Tails, do you think you can make a few more of these.

Tails-I had a feeling you’d ask that, I should be able to make a few more. Now that I know what I need to do making them should be much easier, I just need some time. 

Professor Oak-I’d be more than willing to give you a hand if you’d like.

Tails-Thanks, with us working together it shouldn’t take long at all.

All of a sudden Cream yawned deeply.

Amy-You tired?

Cream-Yeah sorry, I’ve been having a hard time keeping my eyes open.

Brock looked up at the clock.

Brock-Wow, we really lost track of time. It’s already twenty after ten; I think it’s time for us to go to bed.

Professor Oak-Yeah, I’d better go back to my lab.

Brock-You sure you don’t want to spend the night?

Professor Oak-I appreciate the offer, but I have some things I need to take care of. 

Brock-Okay, be careful.

Professor Oak-I will, good night!

Everyone-Good night professor! 

With that Professor Oak went outside and closed the door. Everyone was heading to bed when Ash stopped Tails.

Ash-Hey Tails, can you do me a favor?

Tails-Sure, what’d you need?

Ash-Could I use that translator? I wanted to talk to Pikachu before bed.

Tails-Of course, just let me set it for you.

With that Tails turned on the translator and set it up on Ash’s ear.

Tails-There you go all set, just turn the switch to turn it off.

Ash-Thanks, good night!

Tails-Night!

 With that Ash and Pikachu made their way to Ash’s room, and once there Pikachu jumped on the floor and Ash closed the door.

Ash-Man, can you believe it…A couple of days ago we thought we were done with adventure.

Pikachu-No kidding, though I kind of had a funny feeling there’d be a new one just around the corner.

Ash-I guess you’re right, when one chapter ends, another begins. 

Ash and Pikachu looked at each other for a moment.

Ash-I still can’t believe we’re able to actually talk to each other like this.

Pikachu-I know, it’s like something out of a dream, but it’s really happening.

With that Ash sat on the bed and Pikachu sat beside him.

Ash-Pikachu, there’s something I wanted to ask you ever since we really became a team.

Pikachu-What is it?

Pikachu had a feeling of what he was going to ask.

Ash-When I got you from Professor Oak’s lab, why’d you hate me so much?

Pikachu looked at Ash and sighed.

Pikachu-I didn’t hate you necessarily, back then, I didn’t like any humans.

Ash-Why?

Pikachu looked up at the celling.

Pikachu-You see, Amber wasn’t the only one who had a rough past.

Ash-What happened…if it’s too painful you don’t have to say.

Pikachu-No, it’s okay…You see, I was raised with the starter Pokémon and was supposed to be a forth option for trainers.

Ash-A forth, but each region we’ve been too only has three.

Pikachu-Right, I guess Professor Oak wanted to add a level of challenge to trainers. I didn’t really understand why though.

Ash-Hmm, that’s interesting. What happened next?

Pikachu looked down and a tear ran down his eye.

Pikachu-I waited for anyone to choose me, it was really hard to see other trainers pick one of the other starters over me again and again. Then a trainer finally chose me, but after our first battle he found out that I was different and was much more powerful than he thought and gave me back to Professor Oak out of fear…and chose a Charmander instead…I was just crushed and as time passed, I started to believe that all trainers were like that. I spent most of my time in my Pokéball and just didn’t want to be with any humans. That’s why I hate my ball so much; it brings back all those painful memories.  

Ash was just stunned; he never imagined that his own best friend went through something like that. He picked Pikachu up and gave him a hug.

Ash-Pikachu, I’m so sorry. A person like that has no right to call themselves a Pokémon Trainer. I mean, so what if you’re stronger than average. That’s no excuse to abandon you’re partner!

Pikachu-Thanks Ash, you’re always there for me.

Ash-And I always will be buddy.

Pikachu-I still haven’t gotten to the part about you yet.

With that Ash set Pikachu back where he was.

Pikachu-When I first saw you, I thought you were just like everyone else…and would do the same thing as he did. So to make it less painful, I acted like worst to get you to give up on me and just be done with it…but…when you protected me with your life from all those Spearow. I was just stunned, even after all I did, you still cared enough about me to protect me. So I decided to give you a chance and trust you.

Ash just smiled and said.

Ash-Of course I did, even though you were a royal pain…you are still my partner and I’d never let you get hurt like that. Heh, it’s funny. The reason I came in so late was because my alarm clock broke on the floor and I missed the other starters. It’s like it was fate that brought us together.

Pikachu just starred at Ash.

Ash-You know what though, I’m glad I overslept. You’re the best friend a person could ask for.

Pikachu-I feel the same way. 

With that they just sat there for a few moments and didn’t say anything. Ash then broke the silence.

Ash-*Yawn* Oh man, I’m tired.

Pikachu-Yeah, I’m pretty sleepy myself.

Ash-How about we get some sleep?

Pikachu-Sounds good.

With that Ash got into bed and Pikachu laid next to his pillow.

Ash-Good night buddy.

Pikachu-You too. 

Ash then took off the translator and turned it off. A few moments later, he looked at his friend sleeping and couldn’t help but think about what would have happened if he came to Professor Oak’s lab on time. He most likely would have chosen one of the other starters and wouldn’t have met Pikachu; it was a tough thing to think about considering everything they’ve been through together, but it was a very real thing that could have happened if things went according to plan. He then smiled as he thought of how something so humiliating at the time, turned out to be the best thing imaginable…He got more than a starter that day, he got a true friend and even if he could go back in time and do it over, he wouldn’t want it any other way.

With that he joined his friend and went to sleep.

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