After a quick checkup for Bobby at the Pokemon Center, Caleb and his family started their walk north on Route 30.
“Hey Junior, you have Pokegear, right?” Caleb asked.
“Yea, Dad, they give it to pretty much everyone when they turn 10,” Junior rolled his eyes as he answered. Of course I have Pokegear, Dad, everyone does, he thought to himself.
“Of course, of course,” Caleb said, “So, north here on Route 30 then head west on 31 to get to Violet City, right?”
“Good, good.” It had been a while since he had traveled to Violet City. Last time he went it was with Lydia before she passed. The two of them had a babysitter and went to watch a young trainer try his hand at the gym. It was fun, it was different. His thoughts distracted him for a moment as he wandered into some tall grass.
“Dad, watch out!” Junior yelled. What Caleb did not notice was him almost stepping on a wild Pidgey!
The Pidgey dashes into the air staring at Caleb and his family. The creature was visibly annoyed at the situation. Caleb freezes for a moment. He has never been in a battle with Bobby personally. Yea, they’ve been in a few brawls in college, but that was ages ago. This was different. That was sparring with friends, this is wild Pokemon potentially out for blood. Caleb’s eyes narrowed as he looked to Bobby. “You got this, Bobb-o?” The growlithe seemed to grunt in agreement.
The Pidgey immediately sent a strong gust of wind toward Bobby, pushing him backwards. “Bobby – get up there and use bite.” Bobby leapt into the air pulling the Pidgey to the ground with his teeth. It took everything the Pidgey had to wiggle it’s way free from Bobby. Immediately upon emerging from Bobby’s mouth the creature spun and dove for a quick return attack.
“Blast that thing with Ember!” Caleb had remembered most of the moves Bobby knew. This was one of them. Pidgey scratched Bobby with it’s quick attack, but was immediately slammed to the ground as flames burst from Bobby’s mouth. The flames engulfed the bird for 30 seconds before dissipating. The Pidgey remained unconscious on the ground after the hit.
Caleb and Bobby both just stood there, breathing heavily following the battle. Penny ran over and hugged her father, “You did it, Daddy! You won.”
Caleb blinked. “I won? Hey! We won!”
Junior smirked for a moment as he watched. “Yes, Dad, you won. But your form was sloppy and you don’t seem to remember most of Bobby’s moves. I could have helped you, but Wiggles is weak to flying type moves. He could have been smacked around really quick. We’re going to Violet City, it’s a bird gym Dad. Maybe we should battle a few more of these on our way into town to get you ready.” Junior spoke with wisdom far beyond his years. Caleb was shocked, but proud to see his son’s knowledge. I know they have classes at school about Pokemon training, but the detail they learn is impressive, he thought to himself.
“Thanks, my boy.” He walked over and hugged Junior. “Glad I kept you around,” he said playfully tussling Junior’s hair.
Caleb and Bobby got into a few more skirmishes with Pokemon on their way through Route 30. Bobby took down a Caterpie, another Pidgey, and a Metapod. He seemed stronger somehow after each successive battle. As they reached the fork where Routes 30 and 31 meet, the family peered into the Dark Cave. Man, I hate those caves, Caleb thought to himself. A mess of zubats and you can barely see where you’re going. Caleb hated zubats and he hated the Dark Cave. Years ago, Lydia had wanted to explore the Dark Cave. They went on a paid tour with a guide who’s Flaaffy who illuminated their path and took down rogue zubats. He still remembers his wife’s excitement looking at the native zubats, peeking through the different corners of the cave. He also remembered the laughter from his wife as he wiped zubat poop off his head. He missed her laugh.
“Come on, Dad,” Junior said, “If we want to get to Violet before nightfall, we better get walking down Route 31.” Junior was right.
As they rounded the corner, a youngster jumps out of the grass at the Caleb.
“Yeargh!” Caleb yells.
“You like shorts? I like shorts?” the kid said. He was wearing a baggy hoodie with Gold’s face on it with the words “Young Champ” written below. The boy had a backwards ball cap and, sure enough, was wearing shorts.
“Uhm, sure, I like shorts enough,” Caleb said. He looked back at his kids with a confused look. He mouthed I have no idea, to them and shrugged his shoulders.
“You have a growlithe?”
“We should battle, old man. I got the Gold spirit and in my shorts, I’m unstoppable.”
Caleb just looked at him confused. He had battled a few wild Pokemon on his way here. He even made sure to give Bobby a potion to keep him fully healed after. But a trainer battle. Well, this would be new. Caleb had wanted new.
“Fine, kid. Give it your best shot.”
“The name’s Joey you old fart, and you’re going down. Rattata, I chose you!” Joey chucked a Pokeball to the ground and a young Rattata sprung forth. It looked small, but so did most Rattatas to Caleb.
“Takle, Rattata!” The Rattata lunged toward Bobby with his whole body, knocking him back two feet.
“Ember, Bobby, scorch ‘im,” Caleb yelled. Bobby breathed a powerful burst of flame at the Rattata. But, it stood firm.
“It won’t be that easy, Gramps. Quick attack!” The Rattata was on the move!
“Bite, Bobby!” The Rattata flew past Bobby with a quick slam to the side. Bobby slowly turned around and charge the Rattata. The Rattata dodged the blow.
Joey began to smirk. “Not so tough anymore, old man. Again, quick attack!”
“Bite, Bobby, like you’ve never bit before!” The Rattata once more slammed into Bobby, knocking it back a foot. Bobby once more turned around and charged with his mouth open wide. He clamped down with his huge jaws on the Rattata. He held it for a moment, then spit the Rattata to the ground. The Pokemon had fainted.
“I lost?” Joey said, looking at his defeated Rattata.
“We won! I won!” Caleb ran over and hugged Bobby. He pet the Growlithe saying, “What a good boy, you are. What a good boy!” He pulled out some berries from his pocket and Bobby ate them out of Caleb’s hand.
Joey walked over to Caleb. His Rattata was back in his Pokeball. Joey pulled out his wallet and slammed 64 Pokédollars to the ground. “Well done, old man. You earned it.”
He started to walk away as Caleb sat there feeding Bobby. Bobby had gotten a few good smacks from Joey’s Rattata, which was stronger than he expected. Joey suddenly turned around and said, “Hey Mister?”
“Can I get your cell number?”
Caleb just looked at him dumbfounded. “What?”
“No really, can I get your number?”
“Why would I give some random kid I met on Route 31 my number, that seems totally ridiculous.”
Joey scratched his head, “Yea, I guess it actually is.” He pulled out a small business card from his back pocket. “Here, this is my number. I’m going to strengthen up my Rattata. When you want a rematch, this little guy is going to kick your tail!”
Caleb put the card in his pocket. “We’ll see. Thanks for the battle, kid.”
“No problem, Gramps.” Joey then walked toward Violet City down Route 31.
After some rest, the family continued their walk on Route 31 toward Violet City. It was a very green area, with high grass and a lot of Caterpies. After winning a few battles with random Pokemon, and one very aggressive bug catching trainer, they finally reached Violet City. Caleb and family headed right for the Pokemon Center to heal up. Soon I’ll be trying for my first gym badge. My Pokemon journey really is starting, Caleb thought to himself.
He wasn’t sure how that was going to go, but he was looking forward to the days and events ahead.
This is the second part of my new Pokemon story. I think I’m going to roll these out in parts like this on a monthly basis. Hopefully, you enjoyed it. If you did, check out Part 1 to see some of the background for Caleb and his family. Thanks for reading!