Instructions: I *highly* suggest reading Gagnat d'Amour and Perdant d'Amour before attempting this

Instructions: I *highly* suggest reading Gagnat d'Amour and Perdant d'Amour before attempting this. This is not me just trying to plug my fics… reading this with no background information just really isn't an option!

Warning: Linda POV (I know no one likes her… poor Linda!) and angst. MATURE READERS WHO WON'T FLAME FOR A DARK TOPIC ONLY!  Sakashipping and something Chuchino will kill me for.

Overview: Eighteen months after the events of PdA – where everyone is now.


…Manquant d'Amour…


I crossed my legs as I lay back against the soft sofa and looked expectantly at Ruksana, sitting across the room from me. She always looked so in control. Made me sick sometimes.

          "Linda…have you been crying?" she asked, in her sympathetic, friendly voice.

          Have I been crying? How many times had I cried? And how many times had I blamed ill-fitting contact lenses, making my eyes water? Mind you, they were bloody annoying. But there's no way I'm going back to my glasses; horrible memories. Growing up, I didn't have a face – just a pair of glasses and a mouth. When my cousin started dating the Pokémon Master, they had to go…

          "What do you want to talk about?" Ruksana pressed, gently, when I didn't reply. I turned my head to gaze at her…through the cornflower blue eyes that I was born with, knowing that Ruksana would see only the piercing, artificial hue that the coloured contacts gave me. I sighed.

          "I don't know…" I finally admitted, inwardly wincing as I suddenly noticed that I sounded like a valley girl. "I just don't know what's wrong with me…I used to be in control of everything in my life… and now…everything's upside down…" Ruksana nodded knowingly.

          "What's his name?" she asked. I could feel my cheeks redden…don't you hate that? It's bad enough when it's obvious to other people that you're blushing, but to feel your face begin to burn makes the whole thing so much harder.

          "T-Tracey…" I mumbled. Ruksana arched an eyebrow.

          "Well why don't you tell me all about you and him?" I straightened up on the sofa, pushing back a lock of blonde hair, equally as artificial as the colour of my eyes. For a split second, I wish I had my reddish, strawberry blonde plaits hanging down by my shoulders instead of this highlighted blonde, severely cropped hair I was currently sporting.

          When did I become so artificial…?

            "Well," I began. "We met through my cousin. I was about fourteen I guess… it was during my one and only Indigo League tournament. He used to travel around with my cousin and her husband when they were kids. He was a Pokémon Watcher… two years older…"

            "Go on," Ruksana urged as I hesitated.

          "Well, it was pretty obvious that he had a crush on me from the word go," I laughed, slightly, "But one night, I was feeling pretty low…" I felt my cheeks colour again. "I was a depressive during most of my teenaged years," I admitted. "And I remember that night...everything was so clear… I-I…" I hesitated again. "I wanted to kill myself. I hated myself, I hated everything…" Restless, I swung my legs off the sofa and began to pace around the room, feeling Ruksana's chocolate brown eyes follow me intently. "I still don't know that was wrong with me… I was a spoilt only child, I had everything I wanted… I was just…so, so…unhappy…" I felt something dislodge my already loose right eye contact and whimpered slightly, returning to the sofa and grabbing a tissue at the same time.

          "This must be hard for you, would you rather talk about a different aspect?" Ruksana asked in concern, but I waved my arm as a passive gesture before continuing.

          "Anyway… he came and talked with me, and he held me while I cried, and then I guess I must have fallen asleep about 11 at night… he was there when I left, but gone when I woke up." I smiled suddenly, a mischievous grin that was often seen on the face of my infamous, red-headed cousin, and for once, I didn't care if it created lines in my perfectly applied foundation. "I guess it must have looked pretty suspicious… him being over at my cabin that late… I wonder what people thought!" (A/N: yes I wonder what you people DID think…)

          "Then I got a job in Goldenrod," I continued, forcing my voice to harden, and turn back to its usual semi-valley girl accent. "And Tracey began to attend an art collage near where I lived, so I let him rent a room from me. From then onwards…we became a 'couple'. We did everything together… but we didn't kiss, or hold hands, and we never came close to sharing a bedroom. He still wanted to, he loved me so much, but he was too much of a gentleman to push it.

            Something my cousin, Daisy told me was that if you play hard to get, you can get anything. I thought that by completely ignoring Tracey, he'd love me more…"

            "Sometimes that works…" Ruksana quipped helpfully. I smiled sadly.

          "Hmmm. Anyway, then there was that whole dramatic thing with my cousin, Misty Ketchum, disappearing like that..."

            "Oh I read about that!" exclaimed Ruksana. "That was so touching… what's going on with them now? They don't do interviews anymore." I winced.

          "Well, Misty got pregnant just a few days after getting back, but she lost that baby after a few months as well… nearly drove her insane. Put an awful strain between her and Ash, but he stood by her, and they got married. Then Misty conceived on the wedding night, and my god-daughter, Samantha is almost two months old now!" I smiled, it was a happy memory.      

          "Great!" Ruksana clapped her hands in delight. "I'm so happy for them! Give them my best!" I only half heard her, I was lost in a memory. I half-smiled.

          "Yup…that birth is one thing I'm going to remember forever!"


"WHAT ARE YOU PEOPLE LOOKING AT???" the sweating red-head on the bed screeched. "I'M NOT A BLOODY FREAKSHOW!" she glared at the line of people standing outside, their expectant faces up against the glass screen that allowed them to look into the delivery room: Delia, Brock, Daisy, Jo, Lily, Tracey, Linda, Violet, Anju. "BROCK STOP LOOKING *THERE*!!" Misty continued to screech.

          "Myst, calm down…" the dark haired young man standing beside the bed began, but Misty grabbed him by the collar, yanking him down so he was eye level with her.

          "And you!" she growled. "You are never touching me again, UNDERSTAND??!!"

            "Yes…" he whimpered. Suddenly, Misty's eyes opened wide and her face drained of all colour. "Oh GOD!" she screeched as she balled her fists up in pain.

          And suddenly a purple tinted, slimy thing appeared and was plonked in Ash's shaking arms. He looked down at it warily, it's mouth opened in a wail that matched its mothers.

          "Is it possible to have a DOUBLE MIGRANE?" he yelled out at his friends as the baby writhed and screamed in his arms, and his wife writhed and screamed on the hospital bed.

          "I think I'm gonna cry!" said Delia, dabbing her eyes.

            "I think I'm gonna throw up," mumbled Brock, glancing warily at what was oozing out of Misty.

          "I think I'm gonna faint!" chorused Daisy, Lily, Violet and Anju.

          "I think I'm gonna go get coffees for everyone!" chanted Jo, before disappearing around the corner.

          "I think I'm gonna get my fallopian tubes clipped," Linda muttered grimly.

          "I think *I'm* gonna stock up on aspirin!" Tracey smiled.

Suddenly, Linda noticed that Tracey was staring at somebody else's foggy reflection in the pane of glass; it stopped being a happy memory.


"Anju?" Ruksana repeated, blankly. "Who's she?" I growled, inwardly hearing my resemblance to my cousin. I don't know why I always feel proud when I spot a resemblance to Misty.

          "Hippy type chick who tagged along with Misty when she came back from Cianwood… never liked her. She's always too happy, always smiling. She's got these stupid, huge pink eyes. Looks like a lab-rat." Yes okay, now I know I was bitching, but hey.

          "Did you feel threatened by her from the start?" Ruksana asked.

          "In a way," I agreed. In a way? Course I did. She was a stranger; and worse, she was female. It just seemed to me like we had this little group. Ash, Misty, Brock, Tracey, Jo and me. Ash had Misty, Brock had Jo and Tracey had me. But you add a new female into the equation…and someone has to make room.

          "In a way I guess I can't blame him…" I suddenly spoke. "He must have thought it wasn't going anywhere with me, and he always wanted all that stuff – you know – marriage, babies, and a big house with a Growlithe. I always made it quite clear that I never wanted any of that, so it was only natural of him to find someone who did… and that person was Anju I guess."

          "Do you feel jealous of your cousin at all?" Ruksana suddenly asked. Caught off guard I glared at her, and watched her cower backwards involuntarily.

          "Of course not!" I barked. "Nobody, and I mean nobody loves Misty more than I do…well, maybe Ash, but not in the same way. I'd do anything for her if the occasion called for it, and I am so happy for her that there's no room in my emotions of jealousy!"

            Ruksana looked taken aback. I felt my face soften.

          "I'm sorry," I mumbled, ungraciously. She nodded slowly.

          "I guess it was the way he left me as well," I babbled, hurriedly carrying on. "I think I fell in love with him whilst he was saying goodbye." I sniffed loudly into the now tattered tissue. "Lousy timing huh?" I laughed, thankful that my voice hadn't cracked. "And anyway," I continued forcefully. "Tracey aside, I…I seemed too have regressed; getting more and more depressed you know?" She wouldn't know. Sitting up there in her fancy navy suit, with her long black hair swept up in a bun, she wouldn't have the slightest clue. She wouldn't know how scared I am; how much I long to just go to sleep and never, never wake up.

          Everyone has made something of themselves, but it's not that I'm jealous. I'm annoyed. Annoyed at myself. Misty has her baby, Jo is practically famous for breaking out of the 'Nurse Joy stereotype' and becoming a youth social worker, and Anju has Tracey. She has Tracey.

          My sweet, innocent little Tracey who used to wake me up in the morning with a shy kiss on the forehead and a plate of warm breakfast. The one who ironed my suits, and did all the cooking. The one who used to sneakily sketch me, and when I found out I used to feign annoyance, when deep down I was horribly proud.

          She has him. It sickened me.

          "What do I do?" I finally asked, helplessly. Ruksana stared down at her hands. And opened her mouth-

          The sudden and unexpected noise made us both jump, and our eyes turned to the beeping clock on a far table. Efficiently, Ruksana rose to her feet, strode across and turned it off.

          "That's all the time we have Linda," she said, turning back to me. "If you'd like to talk some more, please feel free to book another appointment." She turned her back on me and gathered up her papers. "Please pay at the desk," she said. "It was nice meeting you!" she called over her shoulder as she walked out of her office. Leaving me alone.

          Just like he did.

          So there I was, just sitting there, on a psychiatrist's couch.

          Not even twenty-three years old, and I was dying. Sitting on the couch, dying. All on my own. Lonely alone.

          My attention diverted to my large leather handbag. I searched through various items until I found what I sought and held it in my hand.

          23 years of life and nothing to show for it but itchy eyes, frown wrinkles and a bad haircut.

          The little tub of my anti-depression pills rolled to the left slightly in my sweating palm. LINDA WINHAMALL; GOLDENROD PHARMACY the printed label announced. ANTI-DEPRESSIVES; TAKE A HALF A PILL A DAY OR AS INSTRUCTED. KEEP OUT OF REACH OF CHILDREN.

          I struggled with the child-proof cap; it kept slipping in my shaking and damp hands. A substantial amount of white tablets rattled inside the regulation brown glass container. A half a pill a day, my doctor had warned.

          Maybe I should take half a pill for each day of my life.

          That should make things all better.


D'Amour ~ THE END

[ gagnat d'amour – winning love | perdant d'amour – losing love | manquant d'amour – missing love ]