A/N: Hikari's in her Platinum outfit in honor of the new Pokemon Platinum coming out soon! Everyone (in the US) make sure to preorder and get your free Giratina figure! 8D
By the way, I'd like to thank everyone who sent in questions for my last fanfiction. I'd also like to say sorry to those who didn't get a chance to send one in XD;
This might seem a little rushed or off. I haven't been feeling well lately and my head is killing me.
Hikari happily skipped through town. She was very glad to be wearing the cute, new outfit she had just bought. It was a long, pink jacket with large buttons running down the front, accompanied by a white scarf. She figured that since Shinou was getting colder, it was time for an outfit change.
She strolled down the nicely paved way that was covered in snow, swinging her bags at her side. She stuck a stick of chocolate pocky into her mouth and looked around at the buildings surrounding her. This particular town had many shops and tourist attractions. She spotted a trinket shop, an electronics store, an ice cream shop, a fast food restaurant, a regular restaurant, a bakery, a supermarket, a clothing store, and a whole lot of other stores and stands than she could count. And there, on the corner, in a small bookstore…
She stepped inside upon seeing the familiar purple locks. She stepped quietly between the shelves, making her way across the wooden floor toward the corner she had spotted him in through the window of the musty shop. There weren't many people in the tiny bookstore, so it was easy to maneuver through it. However, she did feel as if she stuck out like a sore thumb with all the pink and white clothing.
She hesitantly stepped toward the young man after fully realizing her assumption was correct.
Shinji turned around and his eyes widened. They hadn't seen each other in a couple years' time at the very least and they both found it shocking to catch each other in the same place.
They both stood silently for a moment. "Ah…Sh-Shinji…it's been a while…"
"…And you are?"
"You know perfectly well who I am!" Hikari screeched. "I'm Hikari! The girl who travels with Satoshi and Takeshi, remember?!"
"Ah, right. You're the one who tried to rip my face off in Kurogane Gym, right?"
"Yes, for the same exact reason!" Hikari's cheeks puffed slightly in her frustration. "I can't believe you still don't remember me after all this time…"
"I haven't seen you in at least a year. How in the heck could I remember you specifically?"
"It's been a year and a half…" Hikari whispered quietly.
"Hey, Hikari! There you are!" Takeshi walked over to the place where the two of them were standing. "Come on, Satoshi's worrying about you. He thought you got lost in town again." Shinji smirked and Hikari glared at him.
"Come on, Takeshi, let's just go." Hikari grabbed Takeshi's wrist and led him out of the small store. She passed by the large window of the shop and glanced over to see if Shinji was still standing there. They made eye contact for no more than a second before Shinji broke away with a scowl, turning back to the book he was looking at.
Takeshi chuckled. "…What? Is something funny about Shinji laughing at me?"
"No, it's not that." Takeshi smiled lightly.
"…" Takeshi sighed impatiently. "If you don't understand now…you'll understand someday."
"Understand what?" Takeshi shook his head.
"I might explain it to you someday if you still don't understand."
"…What kind of explanation is that?"
Takeshi said nothing else. Hikari knew that she wouldn't get anything else out of him, so she also fell silent.
After a few moments they reached the Pokemon Center. They stepped inside to see Satoshi standing a few steps away from the doors. "Ah, there you are!" He seemed relieved.
"What were you so worried about? You get lost more often than I do."
Satoshi laughed nervously and scratched his head. "Well, I got our room, anyway. Let's get some sleep; it's getting late."
Hikari nodded. "Right."
That night, Hikari had trouble getting to sleep. She tossed and turned, the words Takeshi threw at her swimming through her mind. She wanted nothing more than to figure out what he had meant.
What was it that she wouldn't understand? What wasn't there to understand about Shinji? He was cold hearted; he was ruthless with is pokemon; he was just plain rude. Very easy to understand. Was Takeshi seeing something that Hikari couldn't see past the fog of unsociability?
Her thoughts spun around for hours before she finally drifted away.
She had strange dreams. She dreamt of Shinji being kind to her. She dreamt of him treating his pokemon with more respect and love. She dreamt of him donating money to charities. Each and every one made her laugh upon waking, but none of them seemed to be what Takeshi was referring to, in her opinion.
She rolled out to the edge of her place in the bottom bunk and stood up. Takeshi and Satoshi had already gone off somewhere. She was sure that Satoshi had gone out to train for his next badge and…she wasn't sure about Takeshi. She figured that he had probably gone with Satoshi. She changed into her day clothes and went back out into the town. She had obtained a map in the Pokemon Center, so she was sure that she wasn't going to get lost this time.
Well, that was the case, anyway, until she…got lost.
"Now…I swear that I was here…" She pointed to the bookstore she had walked by the previous day, but she saw it no where in the real scenery around her. "I must have taken a wrong turn or something… Ah! There! I see the bakery over there." She matched "Horio's Bakery" to the one in its designated spot on the map. She had wanted to take a quick trip to the ice cream shop she had seen the day before, but she had trouble finding the small building.
After what seemed like ages, she finally came across the store. She excitedly opened the door and dashed to the tiny counter. "I'd like one strawberry cone, please!"
"Of course, Miss." The man behind the counter quickly scooped out a large lump of strawberry ice cream onto a waffle cone. "Will that be all?"
"Yes, thank you!" Hikari paid him and walked back out of the store licking her ice cream. She was more than pleased to find that there were real pieces of strawberry lodged in it.
"Still here, I see." Hikari turned around sharply, causing part of her ice cream to fall to the ground.
"Shinji! You made me drop it!" Hikari said angrily.
Shinji chuckled. "And what do you want me to do about it?"
"I want you to buy me a new one."
Hikari glared at Shinji, knowing full well that there was no way to make him buy her a new ice cream.
"What did you mean, 'still here'?" she started, eating what was left of her ice cream.
"In the town."
"There's a contest coming up soon; of course I'm still here. I wouldn't miss it for the world."
"That makes sense, I guess," Shinji said carelessly.
"What are you still doing here? I would have thought you'd get your badge and leave."
"Unless…you haven't gotten the badge yet?"
"Ha!" Hikari laughed. "A little tougher than you expected, ne?"
"Don't assume things, Troublesome. It's very possible that I haven't challenged the gym leader yet."
"Why don't you get a move on, then? That doesn't sound like you." Shinji turned away.
"There was something I was planning on doing before I left."
Hikari looked at him thoughtfully. "Really? What's that?"
"Nothing you should be concerned with. It's just something that came up while I've been in town and it's none of your business." Hikari began to wonder if this had anything to do with what Takeshi was talking about, but she quickly brushed it off as irrelevant.
"So…what are you going to do until you do…whatever it is?" Shinji looked at her.
"Why? Did you have something in mind?"
"You could spend the day with me!" Hikari smiled hugely. Shinji's face twisted into a smirk.
"And why would I want to do something like that?"
"Why wouldn't you?"
"Because I don't like annoying girls." Hikari restrained her frustration.
"You don't even want to go see the pokemon supply store they have here?" she tempted.
"Most of the stuff there is for losers who don't know how to raise their pokemon."
"Could you be any more difficult?" Hikari huffed.
"I keep telling you that I don't want to hang out with you."
"Fine, then! Maybe I don't want to hang out with you, either!" Hikari swallowed the last bit of her cone and turned away sharply. She spotted Takeshi coming out of the trainers' store, obviously just having gotten some breeding supplies. "Ah, there you are, Takeshi!" Hikari shouted.
Takeshi turned his head and smiled. "Hey, Hikari! Nice to see you again, too, Shinji," he said warmly. Shinji's scowl deepened.
"Don't even bother with him, Takeshi; he doesn't want anything to do with us." Hikari glared up at Shinji and saw that he was staring at Takeshi, fists clenched. "He's not even paying any attention," she mumbled.
"We should probably go see what Satoshi is up to," Takeshi said as he walked over. "I figure he's training and he could use the help."
"Sure. Sounds good." Hikari glanced up at Shinji once again to see that he was no longer there. He was storming away in the opposite direction that they had previously been facing. "What's up with Shinji?"
Takeshi chuckled. "I see that you still haven't caught on."
"To what? If you're referring to what you said yesterday, then no, I still don't know what you were talking about." She looked at him. "Are you going to tell me?"
"Not right now."
Hikari groaned. "When will you tell me?"
"When it's so obvious that even Satoshi should have understood it." Takeshi thought for a moment. "Well, maybe not Satoshi."
Hikari laughed. "I hope that's soon, then," she said quietly as they walked away, "Because it's driving me crazy."
They went to the town square where Satoshi was commanding his pokemon to attack the water in the fountain. He had recently found things like that to be a great exercise in control of power. Upon noticing his two friends enter the square, he ceased his pokemons' attacks.
"Oh, hey, guys!" he said, waving. "What's new?"
Takeshi smiled. "Nothing much. How's training?"
"It's great! Pikachu just…" Hikari found it extremely difficult to concentrate on the two boys' conversation. She found herself still wondering what it was that could be making Shinji act strangely. No matter what, she still came up blank.
Hikari jumped at her name. "S-sorry! Daijoubu! What is it?"
"I just wanted to know if you were hungry," Satoshi said with concern.
Hikari realized that it was, in fact, almost lunch time, and remembered the wasted ice cream. "Starving!"
They walked to a nearby fast food restaurant. Hikari got a simple hamburger and french fries. She began to nibble on one of the fries.
"You're really quiet, Hikari," Satoshi said. "Is something wrong?"
"No, not really," she said thoughtfully.
"She saw Shinji in town the past couple of days and noticed that he's been acting funny," Takeshi said, smiling.
"Don't mind that guy," Satoshi said. "Shinji's always doing things for his own selfish reasons." He took a large bite out of his hamburger.
"You could say that," Takeshi said.
What was it that Takeshi was seeing that Hikari wasn't?
"I can see by your expression that you still don't understand," Takeshi laughed. "Maybe I should just tell you…" Takeshi laughed again as Hikari started listening intently.
"What is it?" she asked excitedly.
"Shinji was jealous of me, Hikari."
Shinji, jealous of Takeshi?
It was now Hikari's turn to laugh. "Why would he be jealous of you?"
"Because he thought that you were spending time in town. With me."
"…So? He already knows that you, Satoshi, and I travel together."
"No, Hikari. He thought we were here together." Satoshi seemed completely clueless as to what was going on.
Hikari's eyes widened as she realized what Takeshi was trying to say. Shinji thought that she and Takeshi were an item? And that bothered him?
"But…I don't understand." Hikari felt stupid for saying that over and over again. "Why would he be jealous if you and I were dating?"
"Wow, Hikari, even I understand that part," Satoshi said, holding back snickers.
"Try asking him. Just see what happens." Takeshi smiled and Hikari couldn't tell if he was being serious or if he merely wanted to pick on her.
"Maybe I will." She suddenly stood up and walked out, not caring what either one of them thought. She was going to get to the bottom of this if it killed her.
If Shinji was jealous of Takeshi, then that would mean he would have wanted something that Takeshi had.
If he was jealous of Takeshi because he thought Takeshi was dating Hikari, then that would mean that he wanted to date Hikari.
Hikari stopped in the middle of the street.
"…HOW COULD I HAVE BEEN SO STUPID?!" she cried.