May sighed. She was so sick of explaining this. It seemed like she'd done it every day this week! Maybe she had... "Dawn, you're going to be fine..."
Dawn was sitting in the chair, having nothing short of a nervous breakdown. May was behind her, fixing the other girl's hair a little bit. A certain Ice-type Eeveelution lay on the floor nearby, half watching the scene in front of it in amusement, half falling asleep. Their current residence was in Dawn's own room.
"I know, I know! I'm going to be fine. It's not like this is hard anyway. I just walk right up to him and tell him that I love him! That's not hard. Then, after he rejects me, I'll just leave, that's all. That part's even easier!"
May rolled her eyes, simultaneously spinning the chair that Dawn was in around. When she ended up facing the slightly older girl, the latter put both arms on either arm rest and looked deep into Dawn's eyes. "Dawn, you know that I love helping you out, but I only planned on staying in Sinnoh a week, and you've already managed to stall five days. I'm sorry, but I need to get back to Johto. Ain't no way Drew's going to show me up again!" she proclaimed arrogantly. She took a moment to get her mind off her heated rival. "Alright, look. I'm not going with you tonight."
The conservatively-dressed bluenette nearly jumped out of her seat. "What?! Why not?! But how--"
"Every single time you've confronted this Barry guy, you always find a new excuse, and all of them involve me having to go somewhere, which I don't!" May angrily interrupted. She wasn't one to use tough love often, but Dawn didn't seem to be listening to any other alternative. "If I'm not there with you, then you can't hide behind me. He won't bite you, Dawn! Just tell him how you really feel. If it's destined to work out, then it will. That's it." Her eyes quickly leapt to the clock on the wall, but soon met back into Dawn's nervous peepers. "It's already eight, and it's getting dark out." She, literally, grabbed her friend by the upper arms and pulled out of the chair, giving her a slight push towards the door afterwards. "Now get out there and tell Barry the truth, man to woman! And don't forget which one you are!"
Dawn gulped. "...The woman, ri--"
Fearful of the shouting, Dawn hurriedly grabbed her purse and dashed through the door, swiftly shutting it on her way out.
The four-legged creature in the room stood up and walked by its master's feet. "...Glaceon," it stated sharply.
May put a hand to her forehead. "Tell me about it..."
Dawn had made it outside. She was holding her handbag in front of her, dangling in front of her knees so they hit it with every step she took. She made it outside and made a soft groaning sound. I can't believe it, she tortured herself further, Because I'm such a scaredy-cat, now do I not only have to do the thing that I'm afraid of the most, I don't have May by my side, either...I'm glad she was nice enough to forgo the Contests in Johto to come set me straight...
Her head turned to the dusk sky. Barry's cute, and I've known him for awhile now. Still, him, in love...? I don't picture it, and definitely not with me...I mean, we're friends, should we really try to go any further than that?
Her head turned straight ahead now. Her eyes widened. ...Now I'm doubting myself? I do love him, don't I? I mean, my heart suddenly beating faster just because he's around is a good indication of that...isn't it?
She sighed and forced herself to continue walking to her next-door neighbor's house...even though that was still about a ten-minute walk. I can't back down now...
Dawn dug into her brown, leather purse and pulled out an all-too familiar red- and white-colored orb. Opening it slightly, a new creature stood at her feet. After setting the Pokéball back inside the bag, she bent down to pick the Pokémon up and hugged it to her waist. "Will you help me tonight, Piplup?"
"Piplup..." it replied nervously.
Dawn gave a single, high-powered laugh. "If only it was a Contest, huh?"
As she continued her jaunt, about half a minute was spent explaining the situation to Piplup. The rest of the seven or so minutes was wasted on her mind going back and forth between liking Barry as a friend and liking him as something more.
Long before she was ready, she reached the unsteady, somewhat overgrown home of her friend, Barry. After stalling for atleast a minute longer, a sudden cheer by Piplup convinced the girl to ring the doorbell.
Not a moment later, she forced herself not to yell "OK, nobody's home, let's go." She knew that every time somebody said that, the door ended up opening. So instead, she decided to try to beat the system by not saying anything. It didn't work.
"HEY, DAWN!" a poofy blond yelled upon swinging the door open. "Cool scarf!"
She stroked the red item tied loosely around her neck. "Thanks...I...got it a couple days ago..."
"Anyway, what's up? You feelin' alright? You're lookin' a little red, there..."
Dawn instantly cursed in her mind. "...Y-Yeah, I'm fine. Listen, Barry, I was hoping maybe we could talk...?"
"Oh..." His eyes lifted past the girl's shoulder as he fell into a bit of thought. "Well, me and my buddy Paul were going to go see a movie in a few minutes. Right, Paul?" he leaned back and asked.
"Not until you hold up your end of the bargain and shoot me," came the cold reply from another room.
Barry slapped his knee. "That Paul. Such a kidder! Anyway, if it's that important, you can come with us, and tell me on the way!"
...Paul? she thought to herself quietly, I didn't know he had any friends named Paul... "No, uhm...! Actually, I don't need that much time...Barry, I..." She refused to look him in the eye. Her face was red. She knew it, but didn't mind it so much. "I've been having these feelings for the last couple days, and I..."
After a longer-than-usual pause, Barry grinned widely. "You like ending your sentences with that, don't you?"
Dawn cringed. It was now or never. Slowly turning her head back to him, she looked into his eyes weakly, her left eye squinting a bit. "I...think I love you, Barry."
He froze. He didn't say anything. He just stood there, looking at her blankly, as if she hadn't said anything at all.
After a few moments of that pressure, it became too much, and she began twirling her foot on the ground. Her gaze was comfortably kept on that. "I mean, I know that this is pretty sudden, but there's just...a certain something that forced me to tell you tonight." That something having brown hair and a Glaceon, she decided to add, though not out loud.
His lips shifted to the side. Likewise, his eyes followed. "...Sorry, Dawn. Didn't I tell you? I'm on the other side..." he explained, the words coming out alot easier than what would be expected.
Not much different from what happened to Barry a moment ago, Dawn also froze up. It took her conscious mind quite awhile to fully wrap around what he meant by that, even though her inner being caught on to it instantly. Finally breaking the incredibly awkward silence, she managed to sound out an "...Oh."
"I'm really sorry," Barry said, looking genuinely apologetic, "I really thought I did tell you before."
"No, no, don't apologize!" Dawn almost interrupted, nearing an absolute breakdown. "You probably did tell me, and I...just...forgot...that's all."
"Um..." He looked off to the side nervously. "...You can still come with us to the movies, if you want."
Dawn weakly raised a hand up, the other still holding the forgotten penguin. "No, that's alright. I really should be getting back home. I'll...see you around, alright?" She turned and stepped away from the porch slowly. Her eyes were hidden too far behind her bangs for even her Pokémon to see them.
"In a Pokémon battle! And I'm gonna win it! Ten million bucks on that one!" Obviously having forgotten the last topic even took place, Barry energetically slammed the door shut.
"...Piplup?" the creature asked worriedly, staring up at the Trainer.
It took Dawn more than a few seconds to reply. She still wasn't watching where she was going, since her head was down so far. "...Life is one long, horrible event, Piplup. Don't forget that."
Her voice was so broken and...without a soul, it actually made Piplup turn around in her arms and sigh. "Piplup, pip..." It wanted nothing more than its Trainer back.
Nothing was said for the entire trip back.
By the time she reached her home, it was well past pitch-black. May, still waiting in Dawn's room, was admittedly starting to get worried. Nonetheless, she felt better when she heard the front door open. No longer needing to stay at the window, she sat down in the same chair Dawn had been resting in earlier. Glaceon immediately jumped into her lap. After recovering from the freezing fur, May giggled and started petting it.
More time passed, and May finally heard footsteps coming up the stairs. Yet, they stopped just outside the door. "...Dawn?" she questioned weakly.
At the sound of the name, a young girl slowly opened the door. The Piplup in her arms jumped down and instinctively taunted Glaceon. This, of course, pulled the creature's strings, and a --perhaps dangerous-- game of tag followed.
None of that was May's concern, or Dawn's. The older was looking at the obviously shattered girl with endless pity. "Dawn? How...did it go?"
A lifeless shrug followed. "...It'd never work out between us..."
Automatically, May sprung to her feet. "Dawn, I'm so sorry..."
"It's fine..." While still feeling crushed, a smirk somehow made it to Dawn's face. "It's not like you had me or anything..."
This was a trigger to raise May's eyebrow. "Huh?"
Dawn walked further into the room. She turned to get to a dresser and pulled a light shirt out. She forced herself to take the one she had on, off, then slid the other one on. May being in the room didn't bother her that much. "My problem is, I got too much on the top half of my body, and not enough on the lower..."
"...Wait, huh?" May repeated, narrowing her eyes in complete confusion.
Dawn spun around to her. Something between an amused and frustrated expression was in her face. "Barry's gay, May. He's gay."
The approximate sixteen-year-old simply stood still, stunned.
Throwing the scarf on top of the dresser, Dawn picked up a necklace that she liked to wear to bed. "I don't know how he's managed to hide that, considering I've known him almost my entire life. He claims that he 'thought he told me,' but I'm having trouble believing much out of what comes out of his mouth anymore."
"...So...what are you going to do now?" May asked, honestly not knowing what else to say.
Dawn shrugged, sitting down on her bed. Unbeknownst to her, Glaceon shot a demonic glare at the leg that Piplup had hid behind. "Just wait for Lucas. What else can I do? I'll just wait for him to get back to Sinnoh so we can continue travelling. He said he'd be back in around a month or so, and that was a couple weeks ago, so it shouldn't be too long anyway. I'll just move on with my life, and try to forget that ever happened. I still want to be Barry's friend. Just, now, I know that I'm the wrong gender for it to go any further than that, that's all."
"Dawn...?" May started off shyly.
She walked over to the bed and sat directly beside the girl, forgetting about the Pokémon entirely. The two girls' legs were nearly touching. "I have an idea, if you want to..."
She drifted off. That worried Dawn. "...Want to what?"
"...Do you want to get back at Barry?" she asked, somewhat quietly.
Dawn experienced a small introspection. It's true, she really did still like Barry...but she couldn't deny perhaps a bit of hatred toward him, either. A small prank sounded fun, innocent, yet rewarding enough. "Maybe...What do you have in mind?"
May blinked thrice quickly, her eyelashes whipping around the lids. Suddenly, she leaned even closer to Dawn, and without giving her a chance of asking what she was doing, kissed her on the lips.
Unlike usual, Dawn didn't freeze under pressure. In fact, the kiss only remained in tact for two seconds before Dawn, literally, rolled off the bed in an attempt to get away. Panting heavily, she peeked over the covers and half-glared at May. "What was that about?!"
The Johto-bound Trainer rubbed her cheek, hoping to erase some of the red that was on her face. "You said...you wanted to get back at Barry."
"But...like that?!" she shouted, startling May, "I thought you meant, like, dying his hair pink or something!"
May stood up, walked over to Dawn's new position, and squatted down. She let a knee touch the ground for comfort. Gently, she lifted her hand up to take a hold of Dawn's chin. "It wouldn't be permanent. Just long enough so he'll know that he isn't the only one that can play that game." Her blush deepened. "It wouldn't be permanent...if you didn't want it to be."
Dawn hurried to her feet, then backed up, eventually crashing into the wall. "Whoa, wait, this is going way too fast. You're telling me that you're gay too?!"
Rising to her own feet, May shook her head. "...I believe that...there's love. It doesn't matter who you love, as long as you love them, and they love you, it's all that matters."
"But...that's not right..." Dawn pointed out quietly, almost to herself.
May nodded, feeling a bit...defeated. "...I understand. We all have different views on the matter, and I won't force mine into you." She cleared her throat. "I won't make you feel any more awkward than you probably already do, so I won't say that I love you. But I will say that I care for you. Alot. And with that said, I think it'd be for the best if I leave now. Or do you want me to stay?"
There wasn't much of a reply. She was simply getting stared at in mostly disbelief, with some shock on the side.
After reading the expression a bit more, May continued talking quietly. "I just want you to feel comfortable. I don't want to leave if you still want me here, but if I pulled a string that I shouldn't have, I'll leave for Johto right this minute. It's entirely up to you, Dawn."
Dawn nervously strode up to May, whose eyes enlarged due to surprise of the movement. As she stood in front of the slightly taller woman, she swallowed heavily, then looked her in the eye. "May...will you be my temporary girlfriend?"
May gave a small smile. After a few more seconds passed, and she was able to decipher the request better, she beamed. "Of course I will, Dawn!" She instantly hugged the girl's waist, her face enjoying the blue hair that hit her.
She didn't get to enjoy it for long. Dawn pulled her back and looked her in the eyes again. "Temporary..." Out of nowhere, she kissed May. This time, the lip embrace lasted for as long as possible until Dawn eventually broke off, needing air. "...If I want it to be."