Ok, Chapter 1, bit of a pain in the ass. (No, not in that way, you pervs.)
This chapter is the longest yet, with me breaking 10,000 words.
At the end of this chapter and future chapters, I am going to ask two questions about the story to see if you were paying attention.
Once again, sit back, relax, and dive into another chapter of Pearl's story.
Pokémon © of Nintendo & Gamefreak. Storyline and characters © of me (Enigma Eevee).
- Celesteon, the Apprentice of Light -
Reunion Arc - Ch. 1
It was a good 30 minutes before Charles finally arrived at his destination. Unfortunately, due to his massive amount of momentum, he couldn't stop right away and tripped over a rock and fell forward. He sat there, dazed, trying to clear his head until he heard a sound. When he looked up, he noticed the vaporeon he was carrying, lying a few feet from him, crying. He immediately jumped to his feet and ran over to her side. The sight before him caused him to gasp. The vaporeon's rear left leg was bent in an unusual direction and was leaking blood onto the ground.
"Hold still little one, I will use my aura to mend your leg together, but I will need to relocate it first." Charles said calmly, trying to reassure the vaporeon.
"Please hurry; I don't know how much longer I can bear it!" The vaporeon stammered through her sobs.
"I must warn you that this will be incredibly painful for a moment and then you will feel a warm feeling. The warmth will be my aura healing you and during that time you will need to remain perfectly still." Charles stated.
The vaporeon nodded. "Please, I can't take it anymore. It can't hurt anymore than it does now."
'You don't know how wrong you are young one.' Charles thought to himself. "Ok, here I go. Please try to brace yourself because this will hurt tremendously." Charles then grabbed the vaporeon's leg with both of his paws and twisted the bone back into place with a small amount of force.
"AAAAAAHHHHHHHHH!!!!" The vaporeon screamed with all of her might so loud that it echoed throughout the whole forest.
Meanwhile, Pearl who was running as fast as she could, in the direction she thought her father had gone, skidded to a halt when she heard the blood chilling scream. "Oh god, what just happened?" She asked herself, while looking left and right in a panicked fashion. "That sounded like Aqua! Oh no I hope nothing happened to her!" Pearl then ran with all of her might towards the origin of the scream.
"Please, calm down and hold still! I need to mend the bone back into place so it can heal properly!" Charles yelled over top the vaporeon's constant wailing. 'I am so sorry to have to do this but you leave me with no choice.' Charles thought out loud. He then gathered a small amount of aura in his left palm and thrust it into the vaporeon's chest. She bolted upright before falling onto the ground unconscious.
"That should keep you still long enough for me to heal the bone and keep you off of it for awhile." Charles then started mending the bone fragment together and sealing the wound. 'I must have been going a lot faster than I thought if I caused this damage from one small trip over a rock.' He thought to himself.
Pearl stopped when she couldn't hear the screams anymore. "Oh no, I hope she's not-" She cut herself off, trying to rid her mind of such thoughts. "Ok, now where am I?" She asked herself. Pearl then perked her ears up trying to listen to any sound that might guide her in the right direction. After a few moments, she heard a familiar noise and smiled to herself.
"That's the waterfall! I must be really close." With that said, she ran towards the sound of the thundering falls in the distance. When she finally saw the waterfall, she also heard a familiar voice and stopped to hide behind a tree. She peeked her head out to see who it was and nearly screamed at what she saw. Her father was kneeling over her sister, Aqua, and there was a mass amount of blood on the ground. The sight itself caused Pearl to faint out of fear when she jumped to the wrong conclusion.
"Huh?" Charles looked around the area he was sitting. "That's strange, I thought I heard a voice, but I guess it was the wind." Charles continued to sit next to the unconscious vaporeon, meditating until she began to stir.
"Ugh, where am I?" The vaporeon questioned, trying to hold her head in her paws. She attempted to move, but stopped when she felt a sharp pain in her leg. "Ah! What happened to my leg?!" She began to panic until a gentle voice spoke and calmed her down.
"I'm sorry about that. It seems you are doing ok now." Charles spoke in a calm tone as not to frighten the vaporeon. "Your injury was caused by a small mishap when I could not stop myself in time and tripped. The impact of the fall caused you to dislocate your leg, but I was able to fix it and reseal the wound. You should be able to walk around if you keep pressure off of your sore leg." He looked down at her and smiled while scratching behind her fins to try and reassure her.
The vaporeon leaned into the scratching, enjoying the affection. When the lucario stopped, she attempted to stand but fell down because of the pain. "Ouch, I didn't think it would hurt this bad." She struggled to stand again and was able to successfully. She tried walking forward, but fell again because of the pain. "Why is this so hard? I feel like a little cub that is learning to walk for the first time." She complained.
"Oops, that is my fault. I forgot to spray the wound with one of my potions. Here, hold still for a few moments while I apply this." Charles reached into his bag and pulled out a small red colored bottle labeled 'Super Potion'. He then proceeded to spray the wound until the bottle was empty.
The vaporeon hissed as the stinging sensation from the potion touching her wound. "Ouch, you didn't say it would hurt when you put that stuff on."
"I'm sorry I didn't warn you, but the stinging feeling should go away and you will feel nothing there for a little while." Charles tried to say before he was cut off.
"What do you mean, I won't feel anything?! I need to be able to walk!" The vaporeon snapped at him.
"Calm down, once again, I'm sorry. I did not mean to confuse you by saying that. What I meant is that you won't feel any pain or discomfort there. You will still be able to use your leg except now it will be a little stiff and have a warm feeling there until the potion wears off." Charles corrected her. "Now to get back to more important matters, you said your brother was sick. Is this where you live?" Charles pointed towards the cave a few feet away from him.
"Yes, but how did you know where I lived. All I remember was telling you the direction in which to go. I never said where I lived exactly." The vaporeon looked at Charles with a confused expression.
"I am heartbroken Aqua. Surely you remember who I am, don't you?" Charles asked her.
Aqua's ears (fins?) perked up at the sound of her name. "Who are you? You seem familiar, but I can't remember who exactly, you are." She eyed him up and down thinking she might see something she could have missed earlier.
Charles chuckled. "Take a good look. It has been awhile since you've seen me; in fact you were still one year old when you last saw me. Oh wait, I know what will make you remember. I used to do this when you were still a small eevee."
Charles focused his aura into his right paw, slowly turning it into a spherical shape. He then separated the aura sphere into three separate ones and started throwing them into the air. Steadily, he began to juggle the aura spheres, until he caught all three of them and then threw them into the air once more. When the three aura spheres started to fall the burst into sparks to resemble fireworks.
Aqua sat, wide-eyed at the spectacle in front of her. When the aura spheres burst, something in her mind clicked and she instantly remembered who the lucario was. "Uncle Charlie!" She yelled and jumped into the lucario's arms, snuggling up against his chest.
"There we go, I knew that would make you remember. You used to ask me to do that every time I came to visit. So how have you been doing Aqua? I know these times recently have been harsh on the family." The lucario asked, looking down at the little vaporeon in his arms.
She immediately turned away from the lucario with a saddened expression on her face. "Since dad died, our family hasn't been the same. Mom was so sad when he left us that she refused to leave her room in the cave for days. She finally came out and told us that she was going to go get us some fresh food since all we had been eating was berries. Ruby and I offered to go with her, but she told us that she needed some alone time to think. We haven't seen her since. Topaz and I have been watching over the family since, hoping she would someday return." Aqua began to cry at the thought of her missing mother.
"Oh no, I forgot! Your brother still needs my help! Is he inside the cave?" Charles immediately jumped up, looking towards the cave.
"Oh yea, he's in the cave." 'I can't believe I forgot about him, I'm so stupid!" She mentally kicked herself.
"Ok, I need to go treat his illness, but I need to ask you a question first. Since the time your brother started showing symptoms, have you touched him or touched the blood he coughed up?" Charles asked, a little worried about how Aqua would answer.
Aqua cringed at the thought of her brother coughing up blood. She looked up at the lucario and answered truthfully. "No. I tried to comfort him, but he immediately told me to stay away from him so I wouldn't catch it. At first, I felt mad because I thought it was his stubbornness controlling him, but it was the way he said it that convinced me to take his advice." Aqua started to tear up, thinking about her brother laying on the ground suffering.
Charles breathed a sigh of relief. "What your brother told you was a very smart thing to do. I am sorry to tell you this but after the symptoms you have described to me, it seems that Topaz has contracted the lethal virus that has been spreading throughout the forest recently. I have one more question that I need to ask you Aqua. Has any of your other siblings come home since your brother started showing the symptoms?" Charles questioned her in a serious tone.
Aqua started crying more when the lucario told her that her brother had the virus. She was so caught up in her thoughts that she nearly missed the question he asked her. She stopped crying and looked up at the lucario with an unsure look on her face. "I don't think they have been back since then because they usually leave all day to go hunting for food. The only way how I think they could know about it is if Amy sensed Topaz's illness."
"Ok, well I need to go check on him to see if he is still with us. This virus acts slightly different for every Pokémon it infects. Some Pokémon die quicker than others and some have different symptoms. While I am inside helping your brother, I want you to stay outside and prevent anyone else from entering, especially your siblings since I know they are going to worry about him. Can you do that for me?" he asked her in a sympathetic but serious tone.
"Y-yes, please save him. I don't want to have to tell everyone that another one of our family is gone. I don't think they will be able to take it. None of us are over the loss of our father and our mom's disappearance didn't help." She started to cry once again at the thought of losing her brother.
Charles kneeled down and pulled the vaporeon into a tight hug. "It's ok. I promise I won't let anything happen to him. He is in good hands, that much I can guarantee." He let go of her and started walking in before looking over his shoulder and gave the vaporeon a smile and a nod.
"Huh, what? Where am I?" Pearl started rising from her sudden trip into unconsciousness. She looked around and immediately remembered the last thing she saw. "Oh no, Aqua! She's in trouble!" Pearl looked around the tree only to see that the vaporeon and her father were gone from the spot. "Huh? Where did they go?" She immediately panicked thinking something got them. Pearl started scanning the area until something caught her eye. From her distance, she couldn't figure out what it was, so she decided to circle around the trees to get a better look. When she stopped, she looked around the set of trees and saw her sister Aqua sitting in front of a cave.
'I need to get this stuff to my dad, but I'm afraid to go near her.' Pearl thought to herself. Pearl shifted uncomfortably for a few moments. She kept fighting with herself with one side saying that she needed to protect her dad before it was too late and her other side saying she didn't want to face aqua without her father being by her side. Finally Pearl decided that saving her father was all that mattered and stepped through the bushes towards Aqua.
"Topaz! Can you hear me? Where are you?" Charles called, but there was no answer. 'Oh no, I hope I'm not too late. I will never forgive myself if I let another Pokémon die from this virus let alone one of Pearl's siblings. She would be devastated. Wait, maybe I can find him with my aura.' Charles immediately stopped and focused his aura into his mind before releasing it out all around him in an attempt to locate the fallen jolteon.
"This isn't good, I can't seem to locate him. Why is it that I ca-" He was cut off by a sudden flare in his aura. "There! Hold on Topaz I'm coming!" He immediately dashed towards one of the rooms in the cave. As soon as Charles entered the room, he stopped and gasped at the sight before him. There in the middle of the floor was Topaz, but he was surrounded by a puddle of blood. Charles feared the worst before he noticed faint sounds coming from the jolteon. He immediately ran over to the Topaz's side and rolled him onto his stomach to keep his lungs from collapsing.
"Topaz, can you hear me?" Charles asked in hopes he wasn't too late. No response. 'Please, no, I can't bear to see Pearl's face if she learns her brother is gone.' "Please, Topaz, you have to say something, I can't lose you. Your family can't lose another, please answer me."
"Wha-, where, who are you?" The jolteon barely managed to talk through his gasps for air.
"Topaz! Oh thank arceus, you're alive! Please, I need you to tell me where your pain is so I can help you." Charles was so thrilled to see the jolteon alive, he nearly forgot about the illness.
"My che-" Topaz started violently coughing up blood. "It's in my chest, get it out of me, please..."
"Ok, Topaz, I need you to eat this. This will help destroy the infection in your body, but it will take awhile before you are one hundred percent better." Charles hands the jolteon a vile with a strange red liquid inside of it. The jolteon immediately drinks it and cringes at the taste.
"Ugh, yuck, you never said it would taste this bad. Couldn't you have added some berries to make it taste better?" The jolteon asks with a scrunched face.
"I'm sorry, but adding berries causes the effects of the cure to fade if not used immediately. Therefore I cannot add a berry taste to it unless I was going to use it right away. Now make sure you swallow it all. I'll give you some water to wash it down." He hands Topaz a bowl of water and nearly drops it because of the jolteon's forceful actions to drink.
"Well it doesn't get rid of the taste, but at least I can breathe again. By the way, who are you and how do you know me?" Topaz looks up at the lucario hovering above, examining his body.
"Hm, I guess the whole family forgot about me. Aqua didn't recognize me, but she soon remembered when I showed her a trick with my aura. I would show you, but I think in your condition it would be better to just tell you. My name is Charles and I was a close friend of your father. You may remember me as 'Uncle Charlie'." The lucario explained.
Topaz's eyes widened. "Uncle Charlie, is it really you?"
Charles chuckled. "Yes it's me little one, but we will catch up later, right now I need to finish treating your illness. What I need you to do right now is to try and stand up. Can you do that for me?"
"I-I'll try, but I can't really feel my legs. I haven't moved in awhile, so my whole body is stiff." Topaz shifted his weight around to try and find the best way to stand but to no avail. "No, I can't do it. I have no strength left, I'm sorry."
"Don't be, I can help you to get up, but I will need you to try and stand by yourself for as long as possible." Charles reassured him.
"Ok, I'll try as long as I don't have to move." With that he tried to stand again, but started to fall. Charles caught him before he hit the ground and picked him up in an attempt to stand him up. After a few tries, Topaz was finally able to stand, but his footing was still shaky.
"I don't mean to sound rude, but whatever it is you need to do, you better do it quick because I don't know how much longer I can keep this up." Topaz said with a shaky breath.
"Ok, hold on for a bit. I need to apply an anti-virus ointment to your body and then use my aura to fuse it with your cells. After awhile your body should accept the ointment as a normal substance within itself and start producing an immunity to the virus." Charles stated.
Topaz stared at him wide-eyed. "Wow, I didn't know you could do something like that. How did you discover a cure for the virus and then figure out how to do all this for the treatment?"
"It's a long story that I do not have time to explain right now. In order for your body to react positively to the medicine I gave you, I need to fuse this ointment with your cells quickly afterward or else your body might attack the medicine." Charles explained in a rushed tone.
"Oh, I'm sorry. Go ahead, I won't interrupt you anymore." Topaz said with a shameful tone for preventing the doctor from doing his work.
Charles started applying the ointment to Topaz's body. When the lucario was done with the top half of Topaz's body, he told him to sit down so he could finish applying the ointment to his underside.
As Charles was applying the ointment to him, Topaz couldn't help but feel relaxed all over from the sensitive touch of the lucario. 'Ah, it feels like a massage; almost as if he is releasing all of the worries from my body.' Topaz dreamily thought to himself. After a few moments he noticed Charles wasn't rubbing the ointment and he snapped back to reality. "Huh, is it all on me already?" he asked confused.
"Um, no. The reason why I stopped was because something caught my eye." Charles stated while pointing down towards the jolteon's lower half.
"Huh?" Topaz looked down at himself and immediately turned crimson from embarrassment. "Heheh, oops, I guess I enjoyed that a little too much wouldn't you say, uncle Charlie?" Topaz immediately swung his forepaws down to cover up his slight erection.
"Well I guess that was my fault. I was trying to get two things done at once. I was applying the ointment and using my aura to fuse it with your cells at the same time and I guess I must have over stimulated you. Well that should be enough ointment anyways, I usually only cover a patient's head and back with it and in some rare cases their stomach, so you should be fine now." Charles stood up and checked the jolteon's body to see if he missed a spot.
Outside the cave, Pearl was slowly walking towards Aqua, trying not to make any sudden movements. When she came within a few feet of range, she noticed Aqua was looking at the ground. As she moved closer, she could hear crying. Pearl hesitantly walked up to the vaporeon and attempted to ask her what was wrong.
"Uh...um...are...y-you...o-okay...?" Pearl stammered, too afraid to speak to her sister.
Aqua's head shot up and looked at the albino eevee in front of her. She stared for a few moments before summoning enough willpower to ask the new visitor a few questions. "Who are you? Are you lost? And why do you look like that?"
Pearl stood still, too frightened to speak. She started shaking uncontrollably and nearly passed out from the pressure.
Aqua noticed the eevee's sudden discomfort and walked towards her in hopes to calm her down. Pearl whimpered and started shaking a lot more vigorously.
"Don't be afraid, young one, I won't hurt you." Aqua wrapped her tail around the little eevee in hopes of comforting her. Unfortunately this overwhelmed Pearl and she fainted from it.
'Uh oh, what did I do? All I did was try to comfort her and she faints on me. Oh well I better wake her up.' Aqua thought of a way to awaken the small Pokémon without startling her too much. "Ah, I know what to do." Aqua said to herself. She summons water from the nearby waterfall and starts to drizzle it over top of the eevee in hopes of waking it up.
"Ugh, what, where am I?" Pearl questions aloud as she beings to stir.
"You are by the thundering falls young one. You were about to speak to me, but you fainted when I tried to comfort you."
Pearl's eyes shot wide open and stared straight into her sister's eyes. "Ugh, um, hi..." Her voice trails off when Aqua places a paw on her mouth.
"Shssh, quiet little one, there is no need to be afraid. I will protect you." Aqua then wraps her tail around the eevee and gently rocks her back and forth.
'Wow, daddy was right. Aqua does act like a mom. She's so nice, I could get used to this...' Pearl's thoughts start to trail off as she slowly drifts to sleep.
"Ah, ah, don't you fall asleep on me little one. I need you to answer some questions first." Aqua states as she begins to shake Pearl gently to wake her up.
Pearl lets out a whimper from being stirred from her attempt to sleep. "Alright, I answer some questions." She looks up at the vaporeon and smiles for the first time during their encounter.
Aqua sees the smile and giggles at how cute Pearl is. "Alright, how about first, I ask what your name is?
Pearl hesitates for a moment before answering. "M-my name is P-Pearl."
"Pearl huh? Such a cute name for a little one. Ok, second question. Are you lost?"
"No, I followed my dad here after he ran off to help my brother." She explains with a hint of shyness in her voice.
"You were following your father? What does he look like maybe I have seen him?" Aqua questions.
"Well he isn't my real dad, only an adoptive one. He is a lucario and he is the forest doctor. My real dad died from the virus."
Aqua's eyes widened. "A lucario? Is his name Charles?" She asked hurriedly.
"Yes, yes it is. I saw him run here with you, but he was too fast for me to keep up with him. When I got here, I saw him kneeling next to you and you had a lot of blood around you, so I thought you had died." Pearl started to cry as she remembered the sight of her sister lying on the ground unconscious. "Aqua, I don't know what I would do if I ever lost you. I am so happy to see you are still alive." She continued to sob into the vaporeon's chest.
Aqua sat there, confused. 'How does she know my name?' "Tell me young one, how is it that you know my name?" She asked in a confused tone.
Pearl stops crying and looks up at the vaporeon and smiles before she nuzzles her neck. "I know because I am your sister."
"Ok, Topaz, you should be alright for the time being, but remember, you need to let your body rest." Charles explained to the jolteon.
"Sure thing, I don't think I could move anyways. I still feel stiff from not moving for a long time." Topaz states as he starts to lie down.
"Let me go get your sister and let her know you have pulled through and are now recovering." Charles smiles then waves as he starts to walk out of the room.
"Ok, I think I'm gonna take a little nap to get my strength back. See you later uncle Charlie." Topaz slowly drifts into a deep sleep.
When Topaz falls asleep, Charles walks out of the room and heads towards the cave entrance. As he starts to see daylight, he stops. 'Huh, I hear voices. I wonder if Aqua's other siblings showed up.' He questions silently. He starts walking towards the entrance again, all the while listening to the voices. 'Hm, I only hear two voices. Maybe it isn't the other siblings.' Charles finally reaches the entrance and notices Aqua looking down at something in front of her.
"Ahem." Charles clears his throat to get her attention.
"Huh?" Aqua looks over her shoulder and sees Charles standing at the entrance. As she turns around to get a better view, her eyes widen and she screams at the top of her lungs. "AAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHH, WHAT HAPPE-" Aqua was cut off as she lost consciousness and hit the ground.
"Oh dear god, Aqua!" Charles rushes to Aqua's side and checks her vitals to see if she is alive. "Ok, she only fainted, but why?" As he questioned himself, Charles noticed a faint whimpering sound. He looks up to see Pearl standing a few inches from Aqua's body. "Pearl, how long have you been here?" He asks. She doesn't respond and starts shaking. "Pearl, what's wrong?"
"Daddy, what happened?" She barely managed to ask.
"Pearl, why are you acting so scared, it's just me." He looks at her confused.
"Um, dad, you're covered in blood..." Her voice trails off as she starts shaking again. She immediately goes wide-eyed fearing the worst. 'Oh, please no, don't tell me...' She couldn't complete her thoughts and faints.
Charles looks down at himself and gasps in shock. 'Oh damn. I didn't realize I had gotten all of his blood on me. I hope Pearl doesn't jump to the wrong conclusion..." As he thought about this, he hears a 'thump' and looks up. "Ah shit." He cursed aloud as he notices Pearl lying, unconscious, next to Aqua.
"Well, I guess I better use this time to wash myself off." He looks up and once again gasps but in pure horror. "Oh no...that isn't what I think it is." He stares at the lump of material next to Pearl's unconscious body and realizes that it is his hazard clothing. He looks down at himself again and panics. "Oh no, I can't believe I forgot to wear my protective gear!" He immediately dashes off towards the waterfall to clean himself off.
"Ouch, my head. What happened?" Aqua sits up and looks around to take in her surroundings. As she starts coming to, her memory falls back into place and she panics. "Oh no, Topaz!" She immediately scrambles to her feet and runs off into the cave. After a few moments she finds the room Topaz is in and stares in shock at the scene in front of her. She slowly walks towards her brother, trying to hold back tears as she fears the worst. A sudden noise jerks her out of her depressing state of mind and she listens for it again. The noise sounds again and she immediately sighs in relief and pure happiness.
"I never really appreciated the sound of his snoring until now." Aqua giggles to herself as tears of joy fall from her face. 'I should let him rest. He needs all of his strength back after an illness like that.' She decides to lie down in a corner of the room and slowly drifts back into sleep, smiling happily knowing her brother is safe.
"Urgh, if I keep fainting today, I'll never wake up again." Pearl stirs as she slowly regains consciousness. "Ok, what happened this time?" She looks around and notices her father and Aqua gone. "And where is everyone?" She thinks back to before she passed out and remembers her father covered in blood.
"Oh no, I hope Topaz didn't..., I don't want to lose another one in the family. Please, let him be ok." Pearl quietly prays. She snaps out of her thoughts when she hears footsteps heading in her direction. As she goes to look in the direction of the footsteps, she is greeted by the sight of her father walking towards her, silently cursing himself in his attempts to dry his fur. She smiles when she sees he looks normal and runs towards him.
"Daddy, you're ok!" Pearl jumps up at the lucario and knocks him onto the ground. She starts nuzzling his neck and purrs loudly to show her affection.
Charles looks at up at the mention of his name and lands on his rear shortly after with Pearl nuzzling him. "Oh, hey Pearl, I see you're feeling better after your dirt nap." He smiles at her when she looks up at him with a pouting face. He ruffles her head fur and laughs. "Oh you know I'm just joking with you. So where is the vaporeon you were with, I don't see her anywhere." Charles questions as he scans the area for any signs of the said Pokémon.
"Oh you mean Aqua? I don't know. She wasn't there when I woke up. Daddy why were you covered in blood? Was it Topaz's?" Pearl bombarded the lucario with questions.
Charles was caught off-guard from the sudden bombardment of questions and the realization that Pearl knew it was her siblings. "Pearl, how did you-" He was cut off before he could finish.
"How did I know it was my siblings?" She repeated his question at him.
"Well, I didn't know it was Aqua when I first saw her back at our house, but when I followed you here, I figured it was her. I walked up to her when she was sitting outside the cave, but I was too nervous to talk to her. When she tried to help me, I um..." Pearl looked down embarrassed as she remembered her incident.
"You what?" Charles questioned while raising an eyebrow.
Pearl hesitated before answering. "I uh, I fainted..." She trailed from her embarrassment.
Charles chuckled to himself. "You were that nervous huh? Ah poor baby."
"Dad, stop it, you're embarrassing me..." Her ears flattened against her head and she made a pouting face at him.
"Ok, ok, I promise I'll stop. I noticed she was talking to someone when I was exiting the cave. I assume that was you." Charles inquired.
Pearl nodded. "Yea. She woke me up and we started talking. I told her how I knew her name and about Topaz. I also told her I was her sister. Her reaction was really funny when I told her that though. She looked like she was going to fall over like she did earlier."
"So she knows huh? Hmm..." Charles begins to think about Aqua's reaction to the news.
Charles snaps out of his daze and looks down at Pearl. "Huh? What is it?"
Pearl looks away for a moment before hesitantly asking. "Is Topaz ok?" She started to tear up thinking she might have lost him.
Charles notices Pearl starting to cry and hugs her tightly. "Shssh. It's ok. Everything is fine. Topaz is ok; he is just sleeping right now. He will feel good as new in a few days. Would you like to go see him?"
Pearl stopped sobbing and nodded. "Yes, I want to see him. Can I meet him or do we have to let him sleep?" She looked up with questioning eyes.
"I'm afraid we have to let him sleep in order for him to get his strength back. Now that I think about it, Aqua is probably in there with him. She might have woken him up, so there is a chance you might meet him." He reassures her.
She looks towards the cave and then looks at him with pleading eyes.
"Ok, let's go inside so you can see him." Charles lifts Pearl off of his lap and slowly walks towards the cave with her following. When they reach the room with Topaz in it, Charles stops Pearl.
"Ok, I'm going to get him inside and move him into another room. Right now there is a bunch of blood on the floor that he lost during the worst of it. I would rather you not have to look at that, so please wait here." Charles told her in a firm voice.
Pearl nods and backs up to wait for him to return.
Charles slowly enters the room and the smell of dried blood immediately hits him full force. Shaking his head to clear his senses, he looks around and notices Aqua resting in a corner that Topaz is facing. He silently walks up to her and gently shakes her in an attempt to wake her.
"Huh?" Aqua looks up and notices Charles looking at her. "When did you get back?" She questions with a yawn.
"I came back to move Topaz out of this room. It won't do him any good in terms of healing, if he is still lying in his infected blood." He explains.
"Oh, ok, do you need any help?" Aqua asks.
"No, I would rather not have you come into contact with his blood. He should be fine because he has the healing ointment and the cure, so he shouldn't contract the virus again. You on the other hand, are still vulnerable to the effects of the virus, so I am going to have to ask you to leave immediately." Charles told her in a serious tone.
"Ok, but what are you going to do?" Aqua questioned the lucario in a concerned tone.
Charles gave her a puzzled look. "What is it you mean, Aqua?"
Aqua hesitated before speaking. "Well, when you came outside earlier, you had a bunch of blood all over you. I believe it was Topaz's, so doesn't that mean you will catch the virus too?"
Charles kneels down to slowly lift the sleeping jolteon. After he manages to center Topaz in his arms, he turns to Aqua and gives her a smile. "Don't worry about me little one. I have another batch of the cure at home and more healing ointment, so when I leave, I will get Pearl to help me with that. I should be fine once that's done."
Aqua perked her head up at the mention of Pearl's name. "Oh, uncle Charlie, there are a few questions I want to ask you." She states in a serious tone.
"Ok, I'll answer any questions you have, but I need to get Topaz out of here first. The longer he is exposed to his infected blood, the less likely the cure will take effect. Is there an empty room he can stay in while his is sealed off?" He asks her in a hurried voice.
"What do you mean sealed off? Can't he ju-" She was cut off before she could finish by Charles.
"No, he can never return to this room and I'd rather not have your siblings exposed to the infection either. I could sanitize the whole room but it is a lot easier to just seal off the infected area and move on. Now please, no more questions until I can move him somewhere safer." Charles explained with a firm tone.
"Y-yes, sir..." Aqua felt ashamed at herself for being stubborn.
"Ok, back to my question earlier, is there an empty room where he can rest that isn't occupied by any of your siblings?" He asks her.
"Um, yea. We have an extra room for when guests or other family members would visit. Come with me, I'll show you to it." Aqua slowly made her way to the entrance of Topaz's room. She stops and turns around to look at the tainted room once belonging to her brother. 'I used to feel so safe here. This cave protected us from anything including storms and the winter, but now I'm not so sure that we are safe anymore.' She continued to stare, unaware that Charles had already left the room.
Aqua hears a voice behind her and snaps back to reality. "Aqua, you need to move on. This is only a small scar that I will cover up. Your brother is still alive and that's all that matters now. Please, let's go. I would like to get Topaz to his new room so I can examine him again." Charles says in a calm voice.
With that said, Aqua slowly turns and walks out of the room. 'Please, never let this happen to our family again. We have been through so much already, please don't break us apart.' Aqua quietly prays to herself as she exits the room.
Pearl hears noises coming from the room and then notices her father walking towards her. She looks up at him and he smiles at her and nods. She relaxes at the sight of her father's content expression. Pearl then hears another sound behind her father, coming from the room. When she looks around him, she notices Aqua standing in the opening, staring into the room. Aqua slowly turns around and walks out of the room towards the lucario.
'She seems really down for some reason. Maybe I should try to cheer her up.' Pearl tries to think of a way to lift the gloomy mood her sister seemed to be stuck in. She walks up to Aqua and nuzzles her leg to try and soothe her mind. Aqua jumps slightly at the sudden feel of fur on her leg. She looks down to see Pearl nuzzling her leg affectionately. She smiles and once again feels hope that her family can once again be together.
"Thank you Pearl, you don't know how much I needed that." Aqua wraps her tail around the small eevee and gently rocks her back and forth. Pearl smiles and slowly closes her eyes as she drifts into sleep. 'She is so cute when she sleeps. It feels like having a child of my own to take care of. It's so nice to have a little sister to smother with love and affection.' Aqua smiles to herself.
Charles slowly walks ahead, unaware of the bonding moment between Pearl and Aqua. When he hears Aqua's voice he turns around thinking she was trying to get his attention. When he looks back to where Aqua was, he couldn't resist letting a smile form at the sight in front of him. There a few feet away from him, was Aqua, cradling Pearl and rocking her back and forth. He heard a humming sound coming from Aqua and immediately recognized it as a lullaby.
'I am so glad Pearl was able to meet Aqua. She is like the mother Pearl never had. Maybe it's best to let Pearl stay with them. At least here, she will be with her own kind and receive a lot of attention and love.' Charles' expression changed to one of regret for hiding Pearl from them for so long. "What have I done..., instead of protecting Pearl, I have hurt her even more by selfishly keeping her to myself. I can't keep her, she has to move on. Her siblings will take better care of her than I ever could." Charles starts to tear up at the thought of letting the only one that he ever loved, go.
Aqua gently laid Pearl across her back to carry her. "There we go little one, rest now, everything will be ok." She turns around and notices Charles standing a few feet away, crying to himself. Her expression changed to one of concern as she approached him.
"Uncle Charlie, what's wrong?" She asks in a concerned voice.
"N-nothing, I'll explain it to you later. Right now we need to get Topaz to his new room. Where is it?" Charles asks between sniffling.
"I'll show you where it is, but I still have a few questions that I want answered when you get the chance." She walks forward and turns her head to look at Charles. "Come on, it's this way." Aqua walks slowly, so she doesn't disturb Pearl. When she reaches an opening a couple feet away she stops and turns to Charles. "In here. This is our guest room and it hasn't been used in over a year."
"Ok, let me get Topaz in a comfortable spot and then I will answer any questions you have." Charles slowly walks into the room and scans the area. He notices a cushion in the corner of the room and decides to walk over to it. 'Hm, this should do and it looks comfortable. Topaz should be fine if I let him sleep on this.' Charles thinks to himself.
"Ah, you found aunt Peri's meditation pillow." Aqua states.
Charles jumps at the sudden sound of Aqua's voice and nearly drops the jolteon on the floor. "Good lord Aqua, don't scare me like that. I nearly dropped your brother, you startled me so badly." He said in a firm , but shaky breath.
"Oh, I'm sorry. I didn't mean to sneak up on you, but I was curious to see what was taking you so long. Topaz seems fine, so I didn't cause any damage. Are you ok though?" She asks with a concern and shameful tone.
"Yea, I'm fine, just try not to sneak up on me though. I have a lot on my mind at the moment and I don't think my nerves need any more pressure." Charles gently lays the sleeping jolteon on the cushion and looks over him and smiles. 'Well, at least another life has been saved from that horrible virus. I seriously don't think I would have been able to live with myself if I lost him.' Charles breathes a sigh of relief and walks over to where Aqua is standing.
"Didn't you want to examine him again?" Aqua gives him a puzzled look.
"He should be fine for now. I'll do a check up before I leave. Now, you wanted to ask me some questions." Charles assures her.
"Ah yes. Hold one second while I go and set this one down next to her brother." Aqua starts walking over towards Topaz when Charles tries to protest. Aqua raises a paw up to stop him. "Don't worry, I do not plan on laying her next him, just a small little space away." Charles breathes a small sigh of relief.
When Aqua returns, she sits down in front of him and gives him a serious look. "As you know, I have a bunch of questions to ask. Most of them regard the small eevee over there." She continued to stare at him.
Charles begins to feel uneasy thinking that something bad will happen. "Ok. What is your first question?" He calmly asks while trying to mask his uneasiness.
"Well I know her name is Pearl and she said she has been living with you all of this time. During our talk earlier she told me she was my sister. Is this true?"
Charles shuffles around for a second before answering. "Yes her name is Pearl and yes, she is your sister Aqua. Your mother asked me to look after her until she was old enough to seek out her siblings."
Aqua perked up at the mention of her mother. "My mother? Where is she?"
Charles' expression turned into one of grief and he slowly looked back at Pearl before returning his gaze to Aqua. "Your mother...she died. She came to me when she was pregnant with Pearl and others. Unfortunately at the time, your mother had already contracted the virus and it had spread to three out of the four children she was carrying. She asked me to remove Pearl from her womb and shelter away from the virus. After the procedure, your mother passed away from the virus' side effects." He looked up at the vaporeon and noticed a steady stream of tears falling from her face.
"No...please, no..." Aqua couldn't hold her tears back anymore and fell to the ground crying uncontrollably. "Why? Why does this keep happening to us? What did we do to deserve this? First dad leaves and now mom is gone...how are we supposed to live without her?" Aqua continues to sob on the floor.
"Aqua listen to me. You need to be strong for your brothers and sisters. They need you now to look after them. I know it be will hard for all of them to take the news, but your mother wouldn't want you to grieve endlessly every day. As for being able to survive without her, you have already been doing so for nearly a year now. Please, don't live out your days, crying; you have to be a strong older sibling and help guide the others to a better life." Charles tries to comfort her.
Aqua stands up and walks over to the lucario and sits in his lap. "Why is everything so hard? Can't we just be in peace? I know mom wouldn't want us to be held back by her death, but I never thought I would feel so empty inside." She continues to cry into his chest.
"There, there Aqua, everything will be alright. Let it all out now, so you can be strong later. As for your emptiness, I know your mother had a special place in your heart as does everyone else, but you need to find something or someone to fill it. Remember you have a little sister that you will need to look after from now on." Charles gently pets the vaporeon in hopes to calm her.
"Pearl...she didn't have anyone did she? Both mom and dad were gone as she grew up. Poor thing, she never met either of them." She looks over to Pearl, feeling remorse for her younger sibling. She continues to stare until she remembers the last thing Charles said. "Wait a minute. Isn't Pearl living with you? Why did you say I had to look after her?" She looks up at him with a puzzled expression.
"I was there the whole time she grew up, but I could never replace her actual father. Since it was only me that looked after her, she never had a mother figure either. I have held her back from you and your brothers and sisters for too long now. It's time she moved on to live with you. You all need to be together as a family and I can't fill the hole in her heart where you all belong." Charles looked away, trying to hold back tears in his eyes.
Aqua noticed he sadness and tried to comfort him. "Uncle Charlie, I appreciate all you have done for us, especially now that you have saved Topaz. I don't think that it's best at this time if Pearl comes to live with us. Our other siblings do not know of the whole situation with Topaz and having a new sister on top of that will cause them to be very uncomfortable. Plus I have to tell them all what happened to our mother and I would fear for Pearl's safety if they found out the truth if she was here. I am afraid they would react the wrong way and try to hurt her."
Charles nods. "I can understand your point. Maybe we can slowly allow them to adjust to her."
"How?" Aqua asks in a confused tone.
"Well, I have to come back every day for a couple of days to check on Topaz's condition. During these trips, I can bring Pearl along with me. The first trip will be for Pearl and Topaz to get to know each other and for him to learn the truth. Aqua, I want you to tell your siblings what happened to Topaz when they return home this evening, but leave it at that. I would much rather be here, to help you explain what happened to your mother and to introduce Pearl. The second day I return, I want you to tell one of your siblings to stay with you to look after Topaz. This will also be for Pearl to meet them. I would rather have Pearl meet one at a time, than the whole group at once. You do remember what happened when she met you for the first time earlier, don't you?" He questioned.
"Yea, good point. She passed out from just meeting me, so if she were exposed to the whole group, she might run away or something." She giggled as she remembered how Pearl reacted during their first encounter.
"Did you any other questions Aqua or did I cover it all?" Charles looks at her and smiles.
"No, I think that's everything. I'm just happy now that I know the truth. Also gaining a new sister doesn't hurt. I should be ok. I don't look forward to having to explain everything about Topaz to everyone." Aqua sighs.
"Well, I better take my leave now. I need to get Pearl home and get her some dinner. Let me go check up on Topaz and collect Pearl. I'll meet you outside in a few moments." Charles stands up and walks over towards the two sleeping figures in the corner.
"Ok, I'll go outside and keep a lookout for my siblings in case they come home early." She slowly walks out of the room, towards the front of the cave. 'I can't believe how much has happened in one day. Topaz falls ill to the virus, then uncle Charlie saves him. On top of that I meet my sister who has been hidden from us all this time. Then I learn mom passed away. Finally, I'm going to have to explain all of this to everyone when they return home.' Aqua sighs to herself. 'This is going to a long night, I can just see it now. Ruby is going to freak out and run into the cave and probably wake poor Topaz up to see if he's ok.'
After a few moments, Aqua hears footsteps coming from inside the cave. As she turns around, she sees Charles walking towards her with Pearl cradled in his arms. She smiles, knowing everything is going to be alright.
"Well, his condition is as good as it can be at this stage in recovery. All he needs to do is get plenty of bed rest and fluids. Other than that he's fine." Charles stated knowingly.
Aqua smiles and nods. "Yea, I thought he would be fine, but I am going to keep an eye out for any signs of trouble. I'll make sure to come get you right away if anything happens."
"That'a girl. I knew I could count on you Aqua to look after him. I better be off, it's already starting to get late and Pearl needs to be fed. Well Aqua, I will see you tomorrow and remember what I told you about telling your siblings only what happened to Topaz and nothing more. Also, don't forget to tell one of them to stay home the day after tomorrow so Pearl can meet them. Good luck with everything and I will keep in touch. Goodbye Aqua." He smiles then waves to her as he begins to leave.
"Goodbye uncle Charlie. I will make sure to do everything you said, I promise. Have a good night and I look forward to seeing you again." She waves good bye to him and returns to the cave to check on her brother.
When Charles returns home, he sets Pearl on the couch and heads into the kitchen area to prepare dinner. As he stands there preparing everything, he begins to think about everything that has happened that day. 'Wow, so much has happened today. Pearl finally learns the truth about her family. I had to save Topaz's life, which caused Pearl to meet one of her siblings by accident. It's almost like it was fate for this to happen.' Charles snaps out of his thoughts when he hears a noise behind him. When he turns around he nearly laughs at the sight in front of him.
"What's so funny daddy and when did we get home?" Pearl asked before letting out a big yawn.
Charles laughs to himself. "My, my, had a long day didn't you, little one? We got home a few moments ago. I started making dinner so you won't be hungry when you go to bed."
Pearl's ears perk up at the sound of dinner. She can barely contain her excitement and starts jumping around the room. "Ooh, what's for dinner daddy, huh? What is it? I wanna know, please. Come on tell me."
"Now, now, you little bouncing furby, I'm not going to tell you or it will ruin the surprise." He replies with a little grin.
"Aww, you never tell me anything." She looks at him with a pouting face.
"Nope, that won't work on me this time little one. Now go wash up so you can eat when I'm done."
Pearls runs off to the washroom in her house to clean herself up.
Charles sighs to himself, shaking his head. "I'm going to miss her, but I know the longer I keep her here, the harder it will be to let go. The perfect opportunity has popped up and I must act now. It was a fun time while it lasted. Such great memories I will always cherish." Charles shakes his head harder. "What am I saying? It's not like I can't visit her. It isn't goodbye forever, right? Yea, I can always see her when I feel lonely and I'll always have a place for her to stay when she wants to visit." Charles smiles at the thought of her visiting and remembering him.
"Is dinner ready yet daddy?" Pearl asks as she runs back into the kitchen area.
"Huh, what?" Charles snaps back out of his thoughts. He looks down and sees a berry and herb salad mix in two bowls. 'Hm, I don't even remember finishing. I guess I was so wrapped up in my own thoughts I failed to notice my paws working by themselves.' He turns around with both bowls in his paws and sets one in front of Pearl at the table and sits down to eat his.
"Eat up Pearl, we have a long week ahead of us and you need to be in perfect health for it. That means you have to eat the herbs too and not just the berries." He instructed her.
Pearl's ears fell back against her head and she looked up at her father with a pleading expression. "Aw, do I have to...?"
Charles gave her a serious look. "Yes you do young lady. I want you to be in tip top shape when we return to see Topaz tomorrow."
Pearl nearly jumps out her seat when she hears that she gets to see her brother. "Are we really going back daddy?! Yay!" She begins to greedily eat her food, even the herbs she didn't like so much.
Charles laughs to himself as he watches the eager eevee munch on her food. 'Everything is going to be all right. She will do fine with her brothers and sisters. I am just glad Aqua showed up when she did or this whole day would've taken a turn for the worst.' He continues to watch as Pearl finishes off her food and yawns.
"Hehe, someone is a little tired I take it. Come on little one, time for bed." He stands up and walks over to Pearl whom has fallen asleep on her chair. He picks her up to cradle her in his arms and walks to her room. As he enters, he stands there, staring into her room. 'I can't believe it has already been close to a year since you were born here in this room. I will never forget you Pearl, my little princess of light. Hm, I like that, 'Princess of light'. It fits her perfectly, being the shining light in my life and soon to be her siblings too.' He lays her down on her bed and slowly leans down to kiss her on the forehead.
When Charles kissed his daughter goodnight, Pearl couldn't resist and leant up and licked his cheek. "Goodnight daddy, I love you." She sleepily says before drifting to sleep.
"Goodnight my little princess of light. I can't wait until your birthday to give you the greatest present of all." He leans over and pets Pearl behind her ears. She smiles unconsciously and leans into the affection.
Charles slowly exits the room, deep in thought. 'I don't know why, but I feel as though I have forgotten something.' He mentally shrugs and returns to the kitchen area. "Oh well it probably wasn't important anyways." He says to himself as he sits down to finish his food.
Aqua quietly waits outside of the cave, fidgeting with her paws. 'Oh boy, this is going to be difficult. They are surely going to panic.' Just as she finished her thought a noise was heard in the bushes. When Aqua looks up, she is greeted by the sight of her other siblings walking towards her.
"Hello, sister, what have you been up to all day?" Amy the espeon calmly asks Aqua.
"Um, I don't know how to explain this, so you all had better sit down." Aqua stammered in her speech.
Aqua's sister Jade approaches her with a puzzled expression. "Aqua, why are you so sad? Did something happen while we were gone? Please, you can tell us, we are your sisters."
"Yea, you are usually so happy to see us when we come home, but you seemed to be worried about something. What is it?" Amy asks of her sister.
Aqua shifts uncontrollably for a few moments before answering slowly. "It's..it's about Topaz..."
End Chapter One
Ok, well that's the end of chapter one.
Yes, I am becoming notorious for small cliffhangers, but hey, I like to keep my audience on the edge, even if they hate me for it. I know you won't stay mad at me for long because you know I'm just going to release the next chapter for you.
Once again, criticism is appreciated as well as comments.
Now for the last bit: The two questions. Question one: How many times did Pearl faint in this chapter? (I know it sounds like I'm picking on her, but hey it was funny.)
Second question: What was the important thing Charles forgot about at the end of the story?
Make sure to leave your answers in your comments. I look forward to hearing from you all.