Jun hated Super Contests.
There was too much fuss; too much waiting.
From his observations, he summed up the whole experience like this: You dress up the unfortunate Pokémon of your choosing in the most ridiculous and frilly of outfits, then put them on display for the general public to gush over. Shortly after, you are forced to wait while the judges deliberate over the aforementioned ridiculous and frilly outfit.
After exposing your Pokémon to the public in the embarrassing garb, you are forced to mortify them even more by making the poor creature dance in front of the whole crowd, still wearing the horrible getup you forced on them previously.
Then after waiting again for the judges to contemplate your lack of rhythm, you make your Pokémon perform for the judges and the audience, clothed in your fashion-disaster. Which, in reality, is a bunch of waiting as you watch other people use flashy moves to keep the eye of the attention-deficit crowd.
Then, you wait…
Finally, after all that waiting, the results come in, and you lose to the guy that had dressed his Pokémon in a even more ridiculous and frilly outfit than you.
Jun really hated Super Contests.
So, why was he dressed up in a tuxedo in the back of the Contest Hall?
He tugged at his horribly crooked green tie, regretting picking up his Contest Pass in the first place. The idea of entering seemed intriguing at first, and Jun wasn't one to pass up a challenge readily. However, if there was one thing in the world that Jun hated unconditionally it was waiting, which made Contests the spawn of all things evil in his book.
"Why do you look like you're at a funeral? Buck up!" A shamelessly smug Hikari waltzed up to him, grinning triumphantly. She was dressed in a simple white dress, her hair pulled up into a messy bun with a white flower pin.
Jun scowled, pointing a finger at her accusingly. "You won't be all smiles and rainbows after I beat you at your own game!"
"Pfft!" Chuckling, she walked up to the boy, fixing the tie he had attempted to knot. "Riiight." She patted him on the head, smiling deviously. "We'll see about that!" She danced off to primp in front of one of the various mirrors, humming happily to herself.
Jun sighed, looking at the Pokéball sitting next to him on the bench. "And to think this day had started out so well…"
Jun strolled down the path leading away from Stark Mountain, smiling to himself. "That was a good training session!" Jun had spent the weekend inside of the volcano, training his Pokémon non-stop. He was planning on challenging the Battle Tower soon, so he wanted to be in tip-top shape to finally face off against his father.
He stretched out his arms. "But, it's nice to see the sun again!" He shielded his eyes, looking toward the great yellow orb.
"You do realize you're not supposed to look directly at the sun, silly."
He spun around, noticing the girl. "Oh, Kari!" He jogged over to her, smiling brightly.
Hikari looked at him, trying to stifle a giggle. "Jeez, Jun! You're filthy!" She reached up, dusting some of the volcanic ash off of his jacket. "Can't you take care of yourself when I'm not around?"
He grinned, laughing a bit. "Yeah, yeah, whatever. I spent the weekend up on the mountain training!" He flexed an arm, winking. "Soon, I'll be able to beat anyone! Even you!"
Hikari giggled, waving a hand. "Sure, sure."
They continued down the path, chatting happily about their many adventures around Sinnoh. It had been a few months since the two had seen each other, and Jun was extremely relieved to meet up with her again. When they were younger they had been inseparable, so it felt odd to him when she wasn't around. They had talked over the phone a few times in their time apart, but seeing her in person was much better than talking over the phone.
They made it to the Resort Area Pokémon Center in what seemed like no time at all. Jun looked down at Hikari curiously. "So, what were you doing way up here, anyways?"
"Oh, nothing. I was just visiting the Ribbon Syndicate."
Jun stared at her blankly. "The Ribbon Synda-what?"
"The Ribbon Syndicate! It's an exclusive resort for trainers with notable Contest accomplishments."
Jun snorted. "Oh."
Hikari crossed her arms, pouting. ""Oh?" What do you mean by that?"
He smirked, waving a hand at her. "I thought it was something cool, but it's just some girly resort."
She scowled, glaring daggers at the boy. "What are you implying?!"
He snorted again, his smirk growing. "Oh…nothing."
"Don't you "nothing" me! I know your implying something!"
He shrugged, raising his hands in the air. "I was just thinking that if it was a resort for Contests, it had to be girly."
"Whaaat?! Contest's aren't girly!"
He tried to stifle his laughter with his hand, but failed. "Ha! Come on, Hikari! All you do is play dress up with your Pokémon to win ribbons! There's nothing to it!" He thumped his chest, brimming with pride. "A real man wouldn't be caught doing something like that! It's all about the battles!"
Hikari closed in on him, poking him forcefully in the ribs. "I've seen men much manlier than you participate in contests! It's more than a game of dress up!"
"Pfft! Right. Real men battle! Frilly Contests are for girls."
Hikari grabbed his scarf and tugged, bringing his face inches from hers. He could only stare at her, eyes wide with surprise.
Her expression was murderous, a vengeful smile spreading across her lips. "Reeeally? Real men battle? Well, why don't we make a little bet then."
He could feel his pulse rising with excitement, a dangerous smirk of his own growing. "Why not? I'll take you on any day!"
She released him, putting her hands on her hips. "Well then, I challenge you to a Contest battle!"
He straightened up, looking down at her. "Fine! It'll be easy!"
She pointed at him, waving her finger in his face and smirking. "A Beauty Contest battle!"
He was taken aback for a moment, but quickly regained face. "Fine! That's fine with me! I can take you!"
Hikari flipped her hair out of her eyes, her vicious smile growing. "Fine then! Meet me today at Hearthome City! I'll show you what a Contest is REALLY about!" She paused for a moment before holding one finger up, smirking. "Whoever wins gets to make one unconditional request."
He crossed his arms, smirking as maliciously as her. "Heh! Bring. It. ON!"
Jun drooped, holding his head in his hands. He was feeling considerably less confident than he did earlier that day. "Ugh, she could at least picked a less embarrassing category…" He sighed, leaning back and looking at the ceiling. "Really, did it have to be Beauty…If it was a Tough or a Cool Contest that would be better, but…"
He glanced over at Hikari for a moment, thoughtful. A Beauty Contest…
The girl noticed his glance and stuck her tongue out at him, smirking.
Jun scowled, a fire igniting inside of him. He grabbed the Pokéball off the bench, charging to the dressing rooms. If it was war that she wanted, then it would be war that she would get.
He would not give in so easily.
Excitement crackled in the air around Jun; he was hardly able to contain himself as he waited his turn for the Visual Presentation round of the contest.
"Our third Contestant, hailing all the way from Twinleaf Town! Please welcome, Jun!"
Jun ran on stage, unable to hold his excitement back any longer. He never knew it could be so thrilling to be in front of all those people; his heart was beating madly in his chest from the pure adrenaline running through his veins.
"Go, Roserade! Show them your stuff!" The Pokémon entered the stage in a shower of flower petals, striking a pose despite the cumbrous amount of items it was wearing. Jun had no idea of what to dress the Pokémon in; he had wasted most of his precious preparation time trying to think of something. In desperation, he had dumped all of the items in the Fashion Case Hikari had lent him onto his Roserade. The Pokémon could barely be seen under all of the masks, scarves, and glitter.
The crowd didn't seem very thrilled about Roserade's clothing ensemble. However, what Jun lacked in fashion he made up in enthusiasm. Both he and his Roserade posed for the crowd, enticing laughter out of many. He made a deep and excessive bow before joining the other contestants, waiting for the final performance.
"Now, for our final contestant! Also from Twinleaf Town, please give a round of applaud for Hikari!"
Jun peeked around the other contestants to see Hikari's entrance; his jaw dropped as he watched the girl glide onto stage, in awe at what he was seeing. She exuded grace and poise with every step she took, her smile genuine and kind. If he didn't know any better, Jun would have sworn she was royalty.
Without a word, she gently tossed her Pokéball high into the air, her Lopunny taking the stage in a burst of blue musical notes. The Pokémon was dressed as simply as the girl; a white bow had been tied to its ears. The Pokémon stood calmly before the crowd, emanating as much grace and beauty as its trainer.
Ooos and aahs filled the room; the crowd voiced their support for the girl. Hikari smiled, making a small curtsy before joining the rest of the contestants in the line.
Completely stunned, Jun stared wide-eyed at the girl. This was nothing like the hot-headed and stubborn Hikari he knew.
The girl glanced over at Jun, quickly sticking her tongue out a him.
Jun scowled, clenching his fist; maybe he was just seeing things.
After a short break, the Dance Presentation began. Jun slapped his cheeks a few times; he had to get it together. A quick glance at the leader board showed himself in dead last with Hikari comfortably in the lead. He couldn't even bring himself to face the girl during the break; instead he had focused on training for the next round of the Super Contest. Jun was determined to outshine everyone in the Dance round. If he couldn't come out on top, he had absolutely no chance at victory.
He let his Roserade out of its Pokéball once more, standing on stage behind Hikari with the two other contestants. He had taken all but one scarf off his Pokémon; the rest of the accessories only weighed Roserade down.
The dancers would perform in order of the current rankings, with Hikari being the first and Jun being the last to perform. Jun smirked to himself; it was the perfect way to make an impression. However, he still couldn't afford any mistakes, even as a background dancer.
He looked down at his Roserade and gave the Pokémon a thumbs up encouragingly. "Remember, Roserade: think of this as a training session!" Jun had the ability to turn almost anything into a training session. "Watch the lead Pokémon closely and follow their movements exactly. Feel the music and go with the flow! I know you can do it!" Roserade nodded to Jun, the Pokémon's eyes blazing with the same determination as its trainer.
"Now it is time for the Dance Presentation of our Super Contest! Watch in awe as the contestants dazzle you with their spectacular dance moves!" Jun's heart began to pound in his chest again; he stood behind Roserade, castanet at the ready. The judges had handed all the performers castanets to tap out a beat for their Pokémon to follow.
A phrase of the song would be played twice. The goal was for one trainer, the lead, to create a beat that was too difficult for the rest of the trainers to recreate, but still in harmony with the music chosen by the judges. The Pokémon in the lead would dance to the beat that their trainer created; the other Pokémon would try to mimic the lead Pokémon as close as possible, guided by their own trainer's rhythm. It was a complicated game; if a trainer and their Pokémon were not completely in sync, they were bound for failure.
"Are the contestants ready? Then, begin!" Music began to drift from the speakers; the song was slow and soft, played by a symphony orchestra. Jun began to feel sleepy; the song reminded him of repetitive elevator music. He shook his head, snapping out of the stupor. He couldn't lose his focus.
Hikari began to tap out her first rhythm after a few moments. Following her trainer's lead, Hikari's Lopunny twirled across the stage. Jun closed his eyes and concentrated on every single note.
The previous segment of music repeated itself; Jun opened his eyes, grinning. He tapped out every one of Hikari's notes flawlessly, his Roserade easily following the beat. Jun didn't consider himself a musician, but he had an excellent sense of rhythm. He and his Roserade echoed Hikari perfectly for the next three measures of music, rotating as a new contestant took the lead.
He shot a glance at the girl, smirking at her astounded expression. He had absolutely no problem recreating the scene the next two trainers wove, his Roserade performing as well as Jun himself.
Finally, it was his turn to take the lead. He took a deep breath to calm himself down, immersing his mind with the music. The song had picked up in tempo as it reached its climax, the perfect time for Jun to shine. He closed his eyes once more, tapping out a flurry of complex patterns on the castanets. He was confident in his Roserade's ability to follow his rhythm, and was rewarded with gasps from the crowd.
His eyes remained closed for the next two measure of music, the rhythms he created becoming increasingly difficult. He began to sway to the own beat he was creating, dancing together with his Roserade.
The music slowed as it approached the final measure; Jun tapped a few simple notes on castanets, listening as the song faded away. He opened his eyes for the first time since he started his performance, greeted by a standing ovation.
A huge grin spread across his face; Jun waved enthusiastically at the crowd, feeling euphoric. He dropped to his knees, giving his Roserade a big hug. With a final wave to the crowed, he rushed back into line with the other contestants.
This time, it was he who caught Hikari staring at him, wearing the same expression he wore after seeing her Appeal Performance. He smirked, sticking out his tongue at the girl. Now, the real battle began.
Jun stood beside Hikari smugly, all of the contestants lined up on the stage for the final round of the contest. The peasant had uprooted the queen; it was now Jun who held the lead, Hikari trailing in second. He could almost taste the girl's agitation in the air; her mouth was set into a firm line, brows furrowed in concentration. Jun knew he should focus on the task at hand as well, but couldn't help to feel a little grandiose. After all, this was only his first contest, and he already had Hikari shaking in her boots! It was too good to be true.
"Now, for the last portion of this Super Contest! Let's appreciate the wonderful acting of all our contestants!"
Jun snorted to himself; "acting" was just a euphemism for "battle." The trainers would command their Pokémon to show off four of their battle moves for the audience, making sure the moves created something that was "beautiful." Jun wasn't sure how to proceed; he had never watched the Acting Presentation of a contest before. Every time he had watched a contest, he was completely bored by this point. However, he wasn't prepared to lay down his arms, not when he had Hikari on the run. He would watch and learn from what the other contestants did.
"Rapidash, FlameThrower!" The first contestant's Pokémon erupted in a brilliant blaze of flames; the Rapidash aimed the blast at the ceiling, the flames gently drifting around the Pokémon. The crowd clapped heartily, impressed by the show.
"Now, use Flame Wheel!" More flames began to twirl around the Pokémon; the flames already in the air joined the inferno, swirling around the Pokémon in a furious tornado. "Finish it with Swift, then Fire Blast!"
Stars and flames burst from the cyclone, sending another shower of lights down around the Rapidash. The trainer bowed, retreating back to the line of contestants.
Jun bit his lip. The display had been beautiful. How was he supposed to recreate something like that?
The next contestant stepped forward with her Dragonair. "Okay, Dragonair! Let's start it off with Whirpool!" A huge watery vortex spouted from the Dragonair's mouth; it began to spin on the ground like a giant top.
"Surf, Dragonair!" The Pokémon jumped into the vortex, riding down the sides of the whirlpool into the center. "Now, Hydro Pump!" A jet of water burst from the Pokémon's mouth, shooting straight up into the air like a fountain. The crowd responded with cheers clapping as vigorously as they had with the previous performance.
"Okay, switch to DragonBreath, Dragonair!" The jet of water turned into a jet of bluish flames almost instantly. The Pokémon began to spin in the opposite way of the whirlpool, aiming the flames at the rim. Slowly, the whirlpool unraveled, creating a sparkling mist. The contestant gave a small bow, returning to the line.
Jun felt his heart rate spike as the familiar adrenaline pumped through his veins. He ran to the front of the stage with his Roserade, grinning widely. He was still unsure of what to do, but that had never stopped him before.
"Okay, Roserade! Use Petal Dance!" Jun didn't have much of an eye for beauty, but people thought flowers were pretty, right? Roserade extended its arms, a storm of flower petals ripping through the air.
Jun paused for a moment, thinking of what he could do next. "Okay! Now, use Sword Dance!" The Pokémon crossed its arms, spinning rapidly. The airborne petals began to spin around the Pokémon in a dizzying pattern.
The next attack came to Jun easier than the first two. "Now, Magical Leaf!" Roserade continued to spin, adding the attack to the flurry of flower petals. The multi-colored leaves sliced through the petals, creating a fine haze of pink around the Pokémon.
Jun's smile grew larger; he was starting to get the hang of this. "Let's wrap this up with Secret Power, Roserade!" Roserade stopped its spinning immediately, shooting its arms out. The leaves and pink haze froze in the air, floating to the ground a moment later.
Jun had to resist jumping up and down; the robust applaud he received made his heart want to explode with glee. He joined the rest of the contestants in line, looking toward the girl standing next to him. Hikari was the last to perform. She and her Lopunny strode to the center of the stage, her face unreadable. She took a deep, calming breath.
The Pokémon raised its paws into the air, bluish light dancing around the stage. Trails of ice zoomed across the floor, creating something Jun thought belonged in a fairytale. The ice was not just covering the ground, it was creating scenery. Icy flowers bloomed from the icy hills, an icy bank forming around an icy lake. He was reminded of how strong Hikari's Pokémon were; it had to take a lot of control and practice to be able to create a stage this extravagant. The crowd was completely silent, entranced by the story unfolding in front of them.
The Lopunny skated around the icy lake, greeting the ice flowers happily. Something caught the Pokémon's eye; two of the flowers had weaved around each other. Lopunny carefully picked the entwined ice flowers, squeaking in delight. It cradled the flower in its paws, stroking the petals tenderly.
Hikari stood in the middle of the ice field, almost like a narrator.
A gentle snow began drifting over the field, covering everything in a dusting of white. Lopunny held out a paw, looking around at the sky. The snowfall began to pick up speed; what had started as a gentle flurry soon escalated into a catastrophic snowstorm. Lopunny tried to shield itself from the storm, clutching the entwined ice flowers to its chest. All around the Pokémon ice flowers began to explode into thousands of glittering shards, the storm destroying everything in sight.
Try as it might, the Pokémon could not fight the storm. Lopunny was blown off its feet, the entwined ice flowers slipping out of its paws and crashing to the ground.
The blizzard quickly cleared up, a brilliant light flooding the ice field. Lopunny struggled to its knees, crawling over to the place where the entwined ice flowers had fallen. It desperately tried to scoop up the broken shards of the flowers, holding the remains in its paws. The Pokémon began to sob, tears dripping onto the fragments.
No one heard Hikari's final command. All eyes were drawn to the small, icy sprout forming in front of the Lopunny. The flower developed slowly, two small icy buds growing into large icy blossoms from the same stem. Lopunny stared at the flower in amazement. The Pokémon reached out a paw, touching the icy bloom with a small smile.
Jun had no words to explain what he had just seen.
Hikari had not shown off her moves.
She had created a scene.
That was what the Acting Presentation of a Beauty Contest should look like. Acting. Creating a beautiful scene with beautiful moves.
Jun was dumbstruck. He was no where near Hikari's level. However, his stunned expression soon broke into a grin, easily accepting the defeat. There was no way he could have won this Super Contest. Hikari was simply amazing.
The sun was just beginning to sink behind the trees, bathing the whole forest in gold. The two of them walked down the trail, heading toward Twinleaf Town together. It had been a long time since either of them had visited their families. Jun slung his tuxedo jacket across his shoulder; he had dressed down as soon as possible, leaving his with his shirt un-tucked, his tie untied, and his shirt slightly unbuttoned.
Hikari, who hadn't bothered to change, clipped the winning ribbon to the front of her dress, puffing her chest out smugly.
Jun rolled his eyes, smiling. "I get it, I get it. I was wrong. Contests are more difficult than I thought. I was being stupid and immature. I'm sooorry."
Hikari smirked, punching him on the shoulder playfully. "That's what I thought. Next time, don't challenge the master, unless you want to get burned!"
Jun laughed, running a hand through his blond bangs. "I'll try to remember."
The girl's smirk grew; she edged closer to him, her shoulder brushing against his arm. "So…now that I've officially won our little deal…"
Jun stopped, remembering the rest of their bet. "Oh yeah…" He sighed dramatically, sitting down on a bolder near the side of the road. "Let's get this over with!" He held his wrist together, extending his arms to the girl. "Lock me up, chief!"
Hikari giggled, wrapping her slender fingers around his wrists like mock handcuffs. "Hmm…I can have anything I want from you…just think of all the possibilities…"
Jun tried to look indignant, but couldn't help the smile creeping across his lips. "Hey, hey! Haven't you heard of "overdoing it?" Don't abuse the power, Kari!"
"A deal's a deal, my dear Jun-Jun!" She smirked, using her old nickname for Jun. The boy only rolled his eyes, still smiling.
She thought for a moment, her face scrunched in concentration. "Well…Okay! I'll make it easier on you." She smiled sweetly. "All I ask from you is to answer one simple, little question."
Jun was baffled, his smile changing into one of bemusement. She could make him do anything she wanted, and this was all she wanted?
He laughed slightly. "Huh? What question—" Jun had no chance to finish his sentence. Hikari leaned in, giving him a kiss.
Not for the first time that night, Jun's mind was suddenly rendered useless.
After a few seconds the girl broke away, a blush spreading across her cheeks. Jun stared at her wide-eyed, his mind struggling to make sense of what was happening. After a long moment something finally clicked in the back of his mind; a huge grin lighting up his face.
Hikari beamed, giggling. She dropped his wrists, dancing up the path in a burst of pure joy.
Jun leapt to his feet, following after the girl with a sly smile. "Hey! I didn't get a chance to fully answer the question!"
A/N: D8 This fanfiction took waaaaay too long to write! I thought I would've been done with it like, three weeks ago. Remind me to never write a contest fic again...too many descriptions. XP -is actually planning on writing a Contestshipping fic in the future-
Anywho, yay! Twinleafshipping! It is my goal to fill the world with Twinleafshipping fics! 8D I MUST SPREAD THE WORD! A lot of the stuff in this fic was inspired by the Pokemon Special manga (gosh, I love that thing :3). Sooooo, I hope you liked it, even though I got lazy on some of the Acting round. XD