Misty re-familiarised herself with Mrs. Ketchum's kitchen, walking around it rapidly peeking in drawers.

"Ash?" the redhead called playfully, in a sing-song voice. There was a low grumbling from the next room. "Ash Ketchum get yer butt out here now." There was the sound of the couch groaning as Ash's weight lifted off it, and he shuffled into the kitchen, blinking at the sharp light in the sun-filled kitchen. He glowered at the girl who had dared to interrupt his devoted viewing of the four-day long 'Best Battles of Bruno' marathon. She laughed lightly back at his sulking face. "Ready for your torture?" she inquired, smiling good-naturedly.

"You're in a good mood," he stated, ignoring her previous question.

"When am I not?" Misty replied, popping a square of milk chocolate into her mouth. Ash rolled his eyes but refrained from commenting. Misty noticed that he was listing backwards towards the sitting room, and grabbed at his jacket hem. "Oh no you don't. You lost the bet fair and square Ash, and now it's time to pay up!"

"Paper or plastic?" Ash quipped hopefully, but Misty just grabbed him by the ear and dragged him to the far end of the kitchen. "Owowowowow Miiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiisty!! Aw c'mon, it was rigged!"

Misty deposited him in front of the counter where the segments of chocolate were ready and waiting. Ash's eyes lit up, and Misty had to immediately slap his eager hand away.

"No Ash, these are for the crêpes," she yelled. "And there's just about enough so only have one piece okay?" Ash nodded, still looking wistfully down at the chocolate.

Sighing but smiling, Misty crossed the kitchen and began briskly mixing the components in the bowl with a large wooden spoon, only stopping when her rapidly moving elbow made contact with Ash's cheek.

"Ash! You ditz are you okay?" she asked worriedly, dropping the bowl on the side with a plastically clatter. Ash screwed up the bruised part of his face and touched it with his fingers gingerly.

"Yeah, jeez Myst you cooking is almost as dangerous as your cooking…" Misty bristled, and whacked him on the head with her wooden spoon.

"What are you doing on my side of the kitchen anyway you idiot?" she mumbled.

"Um, well…what am I supposed to do with the chocolate?" Misty glared at him.

"Melt it," she said through gritted teeth, rapidly losing her temper.

"Oh. 'Kay." Ash reached for his belt. "I choose-"

"Ash," Misty interrupted coolly. "Maybe you should use the microwave." Ash sweatdropped and backed away

towards the chocolate again. Misty blew upwards at her fringe in frustration, and returned to venting her anger on the defenceless crêpe mixture. She heard Ash pushing the buttons on the microwave, and the slow and relaxing droning as the plate inside whirled in circles, the prolonged beep that announced the process was finished and the punching sound of Ash pushing the open door button. Then nothing…

Ash meekly approached Misty, and tapped her on the shoulder.

"What?" she asked, dread in her voice. Ash scratched his jaw uncomfortably.

"Um, how do I get it out of the microwave?" Misty looked puzzled. Not even Ash was that dense. Even so she spoke slowly.

"You get the oven gloves and…take the bowl out…" At the word 'bowl', Ash's face clouded over, and Misty groaned. "You…you didn't…"

Gasping she looked at the inside of the microwave. All the surfaces of the inside cube were covered in the rich, gooey melted chocolate. She momentarily closed her eyes. "You put the chocolate straight onto the microwave disc, and not in a bowl?" she guessed. He nodded slowly. She groaned. "Ash you idiot!" she shrieked at her cowering best friend. Fuming she stalked across the kitchen and grabbed her bowl of still lumpy crêpe-mixture and shoved the bowl into his loose hands. "Mix that," she growled. "I'm gonna have to run down to the PokéMart and buy some more chocolate." Ash ducked his head, blushing from embarrassment slightly as the redhead stormed out, grabbing her pink jacket from the peg by the front door.

At least they'd finally opened a PokéMart on the edge of Route 1, near Pallet. She was only gone about five minutes; six, seven tops. As Misty approached the pleasant white cottage the first thing she noticed was how much the smell of batter was drifting out of the open kitchen window.

As she walked into the kitchen, her breath stuck in her throat. Batter was everywhere; on the walls, dripping from the ceiling, smeared into the floor and splattered all over the counters. And Ash sat dismally in the middle of the tiled floor sucking the creamy batter off his fingertips. Quickly Misty glanced around, and saw the topless blender.

She exploded internally, but externally just went pale. Ash knew the signs and glanced up at her, almost terrified.

"Go watch telly Ash," she muttered. "I'll finish the crêpes." Meekly Ash disappeared from her sight, and the scrawny teenager glanced around at the wrecked kitchen helplessly.

As she cleaned violently, she thought about Ash, and about how big a pain he was. Sometimes she wished she had a 'real' best friend, like on all those stereotypical TV shows…someone to do her hair, and to giggle with boys over, that sort of stuff. In short, a girl. But as well, someone who wouldn't drive her crazy before she hit twenty…

Just as she hung up the dishcloth, her discussion with herself was halted as she became aware of Ash slinking into the kitchen behind her.

"What do you want," she began impatiently, but stopped when she saw Ash was holding out a plate full of misshapen and still warm chocolate chip cookies.

"Um, you looked a little mad," he fumbled. "So the Professor helped me make these for you in his kitchen…"

Misty smiled suddenly, and reached for a biscuit. Ash watched her hopefully as she bit into it, so she had to be careful not to show the disgust on her face when she discovered the biscuit to be salty. Instead she ate the whole thing, and Ash beamed at her.

"Thanks Ashy-boy," she said, ruffling his spiky black hair with her balled up fist. She smiled. He was a perfect best friend the way that he was.