Disclaimer: I don't own anything.

You may assume whatever pairings you wish, but nothing is definite beyond OldRivalShipping. And before you start to point out anything, whatever isn't capitalized isn't capitalized for a reason. Pokémon are common enough that it's unlikely that their species would be capitalized. You don't capitalize 'human', or 'person', or 'animal' - I don't capitalize 'pokémon', or 'charizard', or 'porygon'. I hope you enjoy!

Green usually concentrated only on his own training and his rival, but he started taking notice of the obnoxious fourth-place finisher of the pokémon league (because no matter what she said they all knew his grandfather was the real third-place finisher) the day she started interfering in his fights with Red. He remembered the day clearly, about a week after the tournament.

"Red!" she said, grabbing his arm right before one of their spars. "You promised me you'd finish showing me around the Pallet restaurants today."

Green frowned. "We're in the middle of a battle," he said, noting with displeasure that Red wasn't shaking her off. "Come back later."

"You haven't started yet," the girl said, pouting. "And Red promised! Noon, today, he'd take me out."

Red shot Green an apologetic look. "I kind of did promise Blue that I'd show her around today," he said regretfully. "Guess I double-booked."

"Well, then, reschedule it for some other time," Green said, glaring at the girl. She merely smirked back at him. "You two can…go out on your own time, not mine."

"Aw, but Red…" the girl said, tears in her eyes. "I finally got back to the place of my birth…and I find that my parents have moved, just leaving me here all alone, and now you're abandoning me too, sweetie?" Green bristled at the last word.

"Of course not," Red said, oblivious to the blatant manipulation that was going on. "Don't cry, Blue. Green won't mind, will you, Green?"

"I do mind, thank you very much," Green said, scowling at the girl who was sticking her tongue out at him. "You promised me a battle too, remember?"

Red frowned. "I know!" he finally said. "You're hungry too, aren't you? Why don't you come with us to lunch, and we'll have the battle right after?"

Green and the girl traded looks. "Ah, darling, I don't think that's such a good idea," the girl said hesitantly. "I'm sure that Green doesn't want to go out with the two of us."

"But Green knows Pallet Town as well as I do!" Red said, smiling. "He'll be perfectly capable of showing you around, too."

Green slapped his forehead. "You idiot," he said scathingly. "She's trying to get you to take her out on a date, and you're inviting me along?"

"A…a date?" Red said, blushing. "I'm sure that Blue didn't mean anything like that." Green and the girl traded looks again, and the girl patted his arm. "You keep thinking that, sweetie."

In the end, Green ended up coming along, after all. The girl shamelessly flirted with Red all throughout the meal, accidentally ended up with a foot against Green's leg once, and walked out on the two boys before the bill arrived. Red didn't even notice that anything was out of the ordinary. "She has places to be," he said, shrugging as he paid for her meal. "I'm sure she didn't mean to."

"Obnoxious girl," Green muttered under his breath as they left.

A couple of weeks later, the girl stopped showing up in the middle of their spars. Green was glad that he wasn't being dragged out to eat with the two of them anymore, but Red looked somewhat disturbed that the girl had disappeared.

"The last time I saw her, she just said 'I think this isn't working out'," he said, and Green groaned. Even when she wasn't physically present, the girl still interrupted his spars. "And now she's gone. I wonder if she's okay? I haven't seen her in a few weeks…"

"Red," Green said, attempting to get this over as quickly as possible so they could concentrate on important things like pokémon battling, "The two of you were going out. She found you not to her liking, and broke it off. You haven't seen her because you are now the ex-boyfriend, and the ex is usually not welcome while the girl is trying things out with another boy. Once she's stable in her new relationship, she'll likely start showing up again."

"Going out?" Red stammered, and Green sighed, knowing that their battle would have to be postponed…again. "But…we weren't going out. Going out with someone…being their girlfriend or boyfriend, that means flowers, and romance, and walks, right? We weren't doing any of that."

"That was probably why she broke it off, yes," Green said.

"And a new relationship?" Red asked. "Even if we were going out in the first place, Blue wouldn't just start going out with another person so soon…would she?" Green tactfully decided not to mention the kid he had seen Blue hanging onto in upscale Pallet.

"Who knows," he said neutrally.

"Eleven years old," Red said mournfully, sitting down. "I've just gone through my first relationship at eleven years old, and I didn't even know it was happening."

"Yes, well, it had to happen eventually," Green said, sitting down next to him. "Be glad it happened sooner rather than later. People can't blame you for being oblivious when you're only eleven."

"How do you even know all of this stuff?" Red asked, turning to Green.

Green frowned. "Daisy went through somewhat of a…wild phase when she turned fifteen. She and her one friend, Marge, would go out and come back with a new boyfriend every other week. She settled down about a year later, but while it happened, Grandpa and I were subjected to stories about her boyfriends constantly."

"Daisy?" Red asked incredulously. "Daisy Oak? Your sister, going through a wild phase? I don't believe it."

"You don't have to believe it," Green snapped, standing up. "Just trust that I know what I'm talking about." And he turned and left. Red could be lovesick and heartbroken on his own time – Green had pokémon to train.

He saw the girl about a month later, watching his training from atop a jigglypuff. "What are you doing?" he asked as he signaled for porygon to halt.

The girl smiled. "Oh, just…watching you," she said. "Am I not allowed to do that?"

"No," Green said, turning back to porygon and the computer screen. "Go away."

"Aw, don't be such a meanie!" the girl said, coming down to land. "You're a cute male, I'm a cute girl. Isn't it natural that we should get together?"

"Whatever happened to that other boy?" Green asked. "The one you dated after Red."

"George thought he could buy my affection," the girl said, sniffing.

"And he didn't bid high enough?" Green asked drily.

The girl frowned. "Touché. No, he thought that money was worth making a fool of me in front of his friends. I do have pride, you know."

"That is wonderful. Go away now." Porygon was this close from just being an electronically-created pokémon to actually being able to travel through electronic channels, he could feel it.

"Come on, you have to have lunch sometime!" the girl wheedled. "You haven't left since you got here at eight, and it's two now. Why not get lunch with me?"

Green and porygon stopped, staring. "You've been watching me all day?" he demanded. Worse was the stricken realization that he hadn't noticed until five minutes ago.

"Don't flatter yourself, honey," the girl said, waving a hand. "I was training, too, over there." She pointed, and Green remembered hearing noises from a distance, but dismissing them.

"I'll eat when I'm done for the day," Green said. He turned to porygon and decided that it was exhausted – he should switch to working with pidgeot instead. He called the pokémon out, and the girl flinched.

"Done for the day, huh," she said, backing away. "Enjoy your dinner, then." And she turned tail and fled. Green blinked at her retreating form, before remembering that the girl had ornithophobia.

"Huh," he said, as he pulled out charizard and signaled for the two to begin an evasive practice. "Works for me, I suppose."

The girl was persistent, and caught him the next day just after he wrapped up practice.

"You're going home for lunch anyways, right?" she asked, frowning as Green avoided her glomp. "Why don't you just go out with me?"

"Because I don't want to," Green said, closing the door in her face. He entered the kitchen, only to pause as he encountered a note.

We're out of groceries, so I've gone shopping. Why don't you go out for lunch today?


Green sighed, opening the door back up. "Let's go," he said.

The girl glared, before smirking for a split second. "Alright," she said. "I know just the place."

'Just the place' ended up being the most expensive restaurant in Pallet, so even as the girl opened the door Green kept on walking past. The girl caught up to him within a block. "Meanie," she said. "Spoilsport."

"No, just intelligent," he said, opening the door to a much cheaper restaurant and instinctively holding it for her. "And I have a limited wallet."

"Points for intelligence, negative points for the limited wallet," the girl said, breezing past him and studying the menu before rattling off her order.

Green frowned, and placed his own order. "Separate checks," he told the waiter as the man shooed them off to a booth. "Points for honesty, negative points for forgetting that I'm not interested."

The girl laughed. Objectively, Green noticed that she had a nice laugh when she wasn't lording something over someone else. "But I do like you," she said, taking her gloves off and laying them to the side. "You're smart enough not to fall for most of my tricks. It would be an interesting change."

"When I'm ready to date, I don't want to have to jump through hoops," Green said as their drinks arrived. The girl blew her straw paper at him, and he caught it. "Find your interesting change somewhere else."

"You don't want to jump through hoops?" the girl said, sipping at her drink. "You're not planning on dating girls, then?"

Green twitched. "Not every girl makes their boyfriend do stuff just to prove that he loves her," he said.

"Name one," the girl said, smirking, and Green cursed his sister for not knowing nice, normal, quiet girls he could use as examples.

"Annoying girl," he muttered instead, stabbing into the food as it arrived, and the girl laughed, picking at her own meal.

As they finished, Green caught her arm as she was about to excuse herself to the bathroom. "No, you don't. Pay for your own lunch."

The girl paused, before laughing again, pulling out a wallet. "Can't get one past you, eh?" she said as she visibly placed the money on her receipt. "You…would be a real challenge."

Green twitched again. He recognized the look in her eyes. It was the same look Daisy had worn all those years ago, usually before saying something like "Let's come up with another plan so Marge and I can seduce that cutie Wallace away from his purple-haired witch of a girlfriend". It was a look that needed to be headed off, immediately.

"Do you really want an uncaring, apathetic person for a boyfriend?" he asked, wincing as he described himself in those terms. "We'd be far better off just being friends."

"Friends?" the girl murmured, and Green mentally slapped himself for taking the exact words Daisy had used rather than the intent. "Alright then." She extended a hand. "Friends."

It was too late to back out now. Green grasped the hand. "Agreed."

"So," Blue said, plopping down next to Green and startling him awake, "Have you heard about Red's disappearance yet?"

"Don't do that!" Green said, bolting upright. "Damned annoying girl."

"Love you too," Blue said, winking. "So, have you or haven't you?"

"Grandfather sent me a note saying that, yes," Green said. "I was planning on heading over to Cerulean to look for myself. That's where the reports last placed him."

"No, you need to go to Celadon," Blue said, tugging nervously on one of her gloves. "I'll go up to Cerulean. I have a matter to discuss with Bill."

Green frowned. "Why Celadon?"

Blue smiled. "Well, it all has to do with this absolute cutie named Caballero –"

"No," Green said. "I believe that we agreed that I would no longer help you interrogate your potential boyfriends after the last one broke down crying. There's more stuff to worry about than whether or not your latest playmate really likes you back."

"Oh, don't worry," Blue said. "This one's a girl."

Green, about to insist on finding Red, stopped. And stared. "Guh."

"How very eloquent," Blue said, smirking wildly. "Need some help?"

"We're thirteen," Green snapped, beginning to hyperventilate. "And you want me to help you pick girlfriends now? And since when did you decide to start liking girls like that?"

"I didn't," Blue said, patting him on the head. Green shoved the hand off. "But you just said –"

"–That it all had to do with a cutie named Caballero, yes," Blue said. "It does. But, I believe that you and your grandfather know her better as the 'straw-hat boy'."

"You did that on purpose," Green said, taking deep breaths to calm himself down. "Yes, I read about him – her. She's the one travelling with Red's pikachu. What about her?"

"She needs training," Blue said, turning serious. "Desperately. Caballero's too worried about hurting other pokémon to battle effectively."

"I don't see how this is any of my concern," Green said. "You and this Caballero girl can search for Red, and I continue the hunt for Agatha of the Elite Four. If she needs training, she can get it on her own."

"I'm almost positive that Lance of the Elite Four is the one behind Red's disappearance," Blue said. "I am sure that he's on Cerise Island. And based on research Sil– I've done, only a trainer from Viridian with special powers can defeat Lance. That leaves it up to Caballero."

"Leaves it up to Caballero…" Green mused. "A girl who doesn't want to hurt pokémon against a trainer that could decimate a gym leader? You must be joking."

"That's where you come in," Blue said, rubbing her arms. "Is it just me, or is it really cold here? Let me borrow a jacket."

"It's the middle of the night in Lavender, of course it's cold," Green said, digging a jacket out of his pack anyways. "So, you want me to train the girl."

"Yup!" Blue said, pulling the white jacket on. "You're the best at training pokémon, anyways. I'm sure she'll be ready after training with you."

"If you say so," Green said, smirking. His expression turned thoughtful. "Lance, the dragon tamer…could he be trying to stir up the volcano on Cerise? We'll have to do practice of our own, then."

"As long as she gets trained," Blue said, standing up to leave. "And remember – she's posing as a boy. Don't expose her, okay?"

"How did you even find me, anyway?" Green asked as Blue disappeared. He stared into darkness for a few minutes, then slumped back into his sleeping bag. "And she took my jacket, too. Annoying girl."

As the group walked off the island, Blue handed the jacket back to Green. "Sorry?"

"Sorry, indeed," he muttered, shaking the jacket out and staring at the missing sleeve. "What did you do to it?"

"Ah…one-armed fashion's all the rage, nowadays?" Blue offered. At his withering glare, she sighed. "It got torn in the battle against Lorelei."

"Did she try to take off your arm? And how did you avoid getting your arm shredded as badly as the jacket?" Green dropped the jacket behind him as they began to surf away from Cerise. There was no point in trying to salvage it anymore.

"I had ditto in there as a decoy," Blue explained. "Think of it this way – your jacket was the only reason I didn't lose an arm."

"You owe me a new jacket," Green said. "You're not running out on this one."

"Aw, please?" Blue asked, batting her eyelashes at him. When Green didn't say anything, she sighed. "Oh, well. Maybe something in green. God knows you need to replace that awful cape, anyway."

Green tugged at said cape. "What's wrong with it?"

Blue shot him a look. "Are you kidding? Nothing could possibly scream 'overdramatic ass' louder than that cape does. You're just not made out for 'mysteriously sexy', Green, and that's the only thing capes are good for. Try for 'accidentally sexy' instead."

Green fell into the water. "I…I'm going to pretend that I didn't just hear you say that," he said after clambering back onto golduck and catching back up with Red's gyarados. "Besides, I needed it to disguise myself."

"Well, you don't anymore, do you?" Blue said. "Capes are for villains, not for the good guys. We'll burn it when we get back home."

"This was expensive," Green protested. "I bought it at the Celadon Department Store, and Celadon's tax is crazy."

"Did you buy it before or after I told you to train Yellow?" Blue asked curiously. When Green refused to answer, she sighed. "Well, we'll take a poll, then. Oh, Red!"

"He's not awake yet," Red called back.

"No, it's not about Yellow," Blue said. "What do you think of when you see Green's cape?" Red turned around and studied Green.

"Honestly?" he said. "It looks like he needs an attitude adjustment. No offense, Green, but who needs a cape, anyways? It's like you're wearing it just so it can billow out behind you. It doesn't quite look natural, or…well, or you."

Green sighed as Blue cheered. "Fine, the cape goes," he said, rubbing his temple. "But you're not burning it."

"Whatever you say," Blue said, smirking, and Green made a mental note to hide the cape somewhere where she couldn't find it. "I'll have too much stuff to do anyway – remaking your wardrobe, debriefing Yellow, calling Silver –"

"I thought that you were buying me a new jacket. Who said anything about a new wardrobe?" Green asked, making another mental note to find out who this 'Silver' was.

"Purple is so not your color," Blue said. "And long purple sleeves in the winter, long purple sleeves in the summer – people think you don't own any other clothes!"

"At least I'm not the one wearing the skimpy dress," Green said, before realizing that he had just been dragged into an argument about fashion with Blue while Red was listening. "Ah…that is…"

"It's all right, Green," Red said, hiding a snigger. "We really don't want to see you in a skimpy dress, anyway."

"I don't know," Blue said thoughtfully. "Give me enough time and hair gel and I could totally make Green pull off the 'in drag' look."

"This conversation is stopping, now," Green said, noting Bill and Blaine trying to climb further up the gyarados to hear what they were saying. Fortunately, Yellow chose that moment to wake up, and as Blue pulled out her phone Green drifted farther away from gyarados' wake.

"Obnoxious girl," he muttered.

"Your newest boyfriend," Green said as they took a break from shopping.

"What about Jeremy?" Blue asked, sipping at a can of lemonade.

"Not that one," Green said, recalling with some satisfaction the boy who had got down onto his knees and begged Green not to hurt him. That one wouldn't last a week with Blue. "This 'Silver' person."

Blue choked on the lemonade. "How…how do you know about Silver?" she asked, wiping an arm across her mouth.

"You mentioned calling him recently," Green said. "I connected the dots from there."

"Oh." Blue took a deep breath. "Oh. You think he's my…well, what about him?"

Green frowned. "There isn't any documentation on him," he said, scowling. "No medical records, no educational records, just a birth certificate with most of the information blanked out."

"Really?" Blue looked interested for a few seconds, before her face fell. "It probably isn't him, though. I just call him Silver because of his eyes."

"So, what's his real name?" Green asked, hiding his relief that he didn't have to worry about the authority of the Viridian Gym Leader hiding most of the details on Blue's newest boyfriend.

"Why do you want to know?" Blue asked. "Hold on…how did you even find that stuff out, anyway? Aren't most records classified from the general public?"

Green looked away. "Grandfather has access to the records of trainers for his research," he mumbled. "I borrowed his access."

"You… borrowed his access?" Blue's face was split into a shark-like grin. "Oh, Green, to think that it's only taken you three years to go from me forcing you to beat up the boys who cheated on me to hacking governmental records before I start dating them –"

"Look," Green said, cutting her off hastily. "An ice cream stand. My treat."

"Indeed." Blue wasn't going to be letting this go any time soon, he could tell. "I want a double scoop of chocolate and mint chip, in a waffle cone, and there were these adorable earrings a few shops back, that were just out of my price range since I'm the one buying you clothes, and a new pair of shoes would be nice…"

"Annoying woman." Green stood. "Let's go get your ice cream."

Green stopped while walking the hallways of Indigo Plateau, staring at a man wearing one of his jackets who had a collection of items spread out in front of a marveling crowd. As the crowd began to disperse with more items and a lot less money, Green walked over. "You know," he said conversationally, "I am the new leader of Viridian gym. Friend or no, I'm supposed to stop you from doing this stuff."

The man grinned up at him. "Aw, but you know you have too much fun watching me," he said. "So, you're Red's replacement for the position?"

"Hn. Do a better job of disguising yourself next time, or I'll have to arrest you," Green said.

"Handcuff play?" the man said loudly. Everyone stopped to stare. "Kinky."

"Noisy woman," Green hissed. "What do you think you're doing?"

"You worry too much!" the man said, coke-bottle glasses glinting. "Bai bai!" And calling out an abra, he teleported away.

"Damn it, Blue," Green muttered under his breath, only to startle at a tap from Erika.

"Ah, Green…" she said. "Is…everything alright?"

Green scowled. "I'll be fine, Leader." He glanced down the hall. "She's up to something."

"Green." Green froze, then turned around to see Chuck, his old master standing behind him.

"As soon as I find her, she's dead," he swore. "Dead."

As they watched Gold and Red speed off, Green turned to Blue. "So, this," he said, jerking a thumb at the red-haired boy who was currently fuming at him, "is the infamous Silver, I take it?"

"Yeah!" she said, pulling him over and hugging him. "Silver, meet Green." The two stared at each other for a moment, before scowling simultaneously.

"This," Silver said in a fair approximation of Green's accent and inflection, "is the infamous Green? I expected someone…better looking."

"Aw, Silver, are you jealous?" Blue said, ruffling his hair. "I don't believe it."

"I don't believe it, either," Green said. "He must be three years younger than you. Blue, what are you thinking?"

Blue sighed. "Let's try this again. Green, meet Silver, my little-brother figure."

Green paused. "Oh."

"You're always so suspicious of me!" Blue said, smirking. "First Yellow, and now Silver…who's next, your sister?"

"You do these things deliberately!" Green sighed. "Obnoxious woman."

"Don't call her that!" Silver yelled, glaring. "Someone as filthy and uncouth as you doesn't get to insult Blue."

"Filthy?" Green asked, eye twitching. "Uncouth? Listen, boy, a common thief like you has no right to talk. I know that you're the culprit behind the Elm pokémon theft, whether or not the picture is the same as your face."

"Common?" The kid's face was purpling quickly. "You reprobate –"

"Oh, I can just tell that the two of you are going to get along wonderfully," Blue said, smirk on her face. "Like sodium and water."

"Ah, doesn't sodium explode when you put it in water?" the other girl, Crystal, asked.

"Precisely!" Blue said, chirping. "Oh, and Green, we need to go shopping again. I kind of lost your jacket underneath Indigo."

"What is it with you and my clothes?" Green asked, breaking off his verbal spar with Silver. "Every time I turn around, you're shredding them, or losing them, or trying to set them on fire."

"Well, maybe I just want to see you naked; did you ever think of that?" Blue asked. Yellow, Crystal, and Silver shrieked, and it was only through a supreme exertion of will that Green refrained from doing the same.

"You," he managed to say after he stopped sputtering. "You always say stuff like that. It's horrifying! And that handcuff comment from before, right in front of my old master, that's grounds for execution right there!"

"Handcuff?" Silver demanded. "What the hell have you been exposing my sister to, you pervert?" Poor Yellow and Crystal were frozen in shock, staring at Blue who was giving off her 'master manipulator' laugh.

"I loathe you all," Green muttered.

"What is he doing here?" were Green's first words as Blue showed up at their usual café with a sullen-looking Silver in tow.

"Silver was going to help me shop after we find your jacket," Blue said, smirking as she sat down in the booth opposite Green. "After all, I know how much you hate waiting for me to try on clothes."

"Yes, well...you could have at least mentioned that you were bringing him," Green said, glaring at Silver as he slid into the booth right next to Blue. "Is this going to become a habit?"

"Aw, Green," Blue said, reaching over and patting his cheek, "You're acting like I'm bringing my brother along on a date, or something!" Both boys flinched. "After all, you've always said that we've just been meeting up when we can as friends, right?"

"Right," Green said, unwilling to admit that he had grown accustomed to meeting Blue weekly and had cleared his schedule for her every Saturday afternoon. "But I don't need that one making comments while you dress me up."

"Don't worry, Silver's promised to behave," Blue said. "Right, Silver?"

"I promise not to tell you how hideous you make the clothes Blue picks out for you look," Silver said in a deadpan voice.

Green sighed. "He's almost as bad as you are."

"Excuse me?" Silver started to rise to his feet. "What are you implying about Blue?"

Blue tugged on his arm. "Sit down, Silver, it's a compliment."

"Is not," Green muttered as the boy slowly sat. The three ate in silence as their meal arrived, until the check arrived.

"I'll pay for you, Blue," Silver offered, pulling out his wallet, when Green snatched the receipt from his hand.

"No need," he said, handing the money to the waiter before Silver could take it back. "After all, Blue doesn't need her 'little brother' buying her lunch."

"And I suppose her 'we're just friends, really' boyfriend is a better candidate to pay?" Silver asked, glaring.

"We are just friends," Green said. "The sooner you get that through your thick skull, the happier we'll all be."

Silver sneered. "As the pretentious, deluded bastard that you are, you obviously need to learn what 'just friends' actually means and apply it to your interactions with Blue."

Green snorted. "And as the arrogant, sniveling little twit that you are –"

"If you two get us thrown out of here I'll never forgive either of you," Blue said, a dangerous tone in her voice, right before Silver launched himself over the table at Green. "Now, let's get what we came here for and leave."

"I'm home," Green called, before stopping dead in the kitchen. "What…?"

Bill rubbed the back of his head nervously. "Uh, hi, Green." He was wearing a dress shirt, and a formal jacket was draped over the back of his chair.

Green's eyes narrowed. "What are you doing here?" he asked, already suspecting.

"Well, I'm taking Daisy out tonight," Bill started, but Green had already swept past him and up the stairs.

"Bill?" he demanded as he pushed his sister's door open. "I thought you were done with dating! Doesn't he not fit your criteria by any stretch of the imagination?"

"On the contrary, Bill is very brave," Daisy's voice came drifting out from her closet. "He shielded me from falling debris with his body in Indigo, you know, and he's very intelligent. I really think this is going to work out. Oh, Green, why haven't I gone shopping in the past three months? Nothing's going to look right!"

"Wear an ankle-length skirt," Green said, perching himself on the end of Daisy's bed. "And a baggy wool sweater."

"Oh, Green," Daisy said, sighing. "Must you always be like this? I remember when you were only eight, and still insulting everyone I brought home. Can't I have one date without my little brother lecturing me before, during, and after it?"

"No," Green said. "I'm only looking out for what's best for you." He scowled. "Unlike certain other little brothers, who aren't worried about what's best for their sisters but instead on making themselves as much of a nuisance as possible."

"All little brothers are like that," Daisy said drily. "Yourself included." She stepped out of the closet. "How do I look?"

Green shielded his eyes. "Too much skin, woman! He'll never survive to the restaurant!"

"Perfect!" Daisy said, pulling on a sweater over the dress. "I'll see you when I get back."

"No, you can't," Green argued as he followed her down the stairs. "And you!" He whirled on Bill. "What were you thinking, asking her out? She's much too good for you, you –"

"Aw," Daisy said, ruffling Green's hair before Bill could start to panic. "Green's in a real bad mood. Did your date with Blue not go well today?"

"It wasn't a date," Green snapped, used to the question. "She decided to bring Silver along, and he spent the entire day trailing us! And it was always, 'Don't pay any attention to what Green says and listen to me instead'! Can you believe the nerve of that…"

He trailed off as he realized that Daisy and Bill had taken the opportunity to make good their escape. "…That…bastard…"

Green smirked as he realized exactly how he could get the brat to leave them alone.

"What do you think about this one?" Blue asked, twirling as she came out of the stall.

"Absolutely gorgeous," Silver said, clapping his hands together. "But it'll be completely wasted on that Todd person you're seeing tonight."

Green shrugged. "He is a photographer," he said. "He'll notice the differences in the way you dress – it's his job."

"But what do you think?" Blue asked, holding the edges of the dress out.

"You look the same as ever," Green said after a cursory scan. "Troublesome."

"Who asked you, you blind idiot?" Silver asked.

Green made a point of looking past him. "Huh, that's weird," he said.

"Pay attention to me when I'm talking to you," Silver said. "It's the very least you could –"

"I thought they were busy training," Green said. Time to see if the gamble would pay off… "What are Gold and Crystal doing here?"

Silver's head snapped around so quickly Green was surprised there was no whiplash. "Where?"

Green pointed to a crowded area of the store. "Right there," he said, identifying a person who, from a distance, did indeed look like Crystal.

"And, I'm supposed to care?" Silver said, making an effort to appear nonchalant. He failed miserably at it. "It doesn't matter that he's been ignoring my gear messages for two weeks in favor of his special 'training session' with Red…or that he took a break to come down here without telling me…or that he's here with some girl…" By the last part, he was positively hissing.

"Well, it's good that you don't care, because I think they're leaving the store," Green offered, seeing Blue covering her mouth and shaking slightly from the corner of his eye. "They'll be gone in the mall soon."

"Wonderful," Silver said. "That's wonderful. Good for them." He shifted for a couple of moments, before blurting out "Excuse me" and turning and sprinting out the door of the store.

"That…was brilliant…" Blue said, giggling. "He's going to be so mad when he finds out that they were never here…"

"Fortunately for us, he won't," Green said, offering her the next dress. "Because you won't tell him, will you?"

"Oh, I don't know," Blue said, accepting the dress and pausing before she returned to the changing stall. "Convince me."

"Those earrings you were eyeing at the front of the store, on me," Green offered. He could afford to be generous – the checks for the gym leader position were much larger than he had thought they were.

"Done," Blue said, voice smug. "Provided that you buy me dessert at the next ice cream stall we pass."

Green smirked. "Annoying woman. It's a bargain."

Over the next few months, Gold 'showed up' so often at the mall Green and Blue frequented that if he had actually been there, Green would have suspected him of stalking Silver. Silver, for his part, never noticed that Gold couldn't have possibly been there all those times, and Green's Saturday afternoons were once again mostly Silver-free.

This led to Blue once again discussing the details of her relationships with Green. As she brought up her most recent break-up, he had to remind himself that it was a good thing Silver wasn't bothering them and thus distracting Blue's attention.

"And he said that I'd never find a man like him again," Blue said, sniffing. "God, I hope I don't. The arrogant, conceited fool, all wrapped up in the fact that he had almost become a gym leader."

"Mm." Green took a sip of his smoothie. "You should have said something earlier."

"Oh, I handled him easily," Blue said, waving a hand. "I didn't need your help."

"Troublesome woman," Green said. "What if he had gotten violent? Or if he had friends who wanted to get violent? That's the point of me screening them beforehand."

"Well, I doubt you'll have to for much longer," Blue said, sighing and slumping next to Green. "I'm getting bored with dating these losers."

"You're going to stop going out with people?" Green asked, telling himself that he had just imagined that hopeful note in his voice.

"No, I'm narrowing my focus," Blue said, leaning against Green and beginning to tick off points on her hand. "He's got to be a strong trainer, not one of those weaklings I'm embarrassed to be seen with. He's got to be smart enough to manage his money. He has to have money in the first place. And, of course, he has to be cute."

Green snorted. "Cute, of course," he drawled. "And you know that our definition of 'strong' is skewed. By strong, do you mean layman's strong, or gym leader strength?"

"The latter, of course," Blue said. "There's no point in dating someone I can beat with one hand tied behind my back. It's boring when my date is kowtowing to me."

Green blinked. "You're limiting yourself to gym leaders, and…well, the Dex Holders?"

"Gym leaders," Blue said. "That Gold's too irresponsible to date, and he and Silver have some weird kind of fixation on each other I don't want to get between, anyways. And Red's too oblivious."

"I'll say," Green said, thinking back three years ago to a postponed battle and complete confusion on Red's part. "Really, though…gym leaders? There's hardly a good one in the bunch."

"Oh, I don't know," Blue said, pursing her lips thoughtfully. "What's his name, that ghost-user? I watched him battle at Indigo. He was pretty cute."

Green scowled. That explained the letter he had received yesterday, a simple scrawled note saying 'Don't worry about it. I don't date jailbait." At the time, he had just thought Morty was making a very disturbing offer to wait for him until he grew up, and had burned the note. Damned psychics…why couldn't they ever just come out and say what they meant?

"You're not going to date a gym leader," he declared. "Why not just take a break from dating in general for a while?"

Blue shot him a look. "Afraid you won't be able to intimidate them as well as you do my usual boyfriends?" she asked.

Green snorted. Gym leader or no, he could intimidate anyone if he put his mind to it. Why else would Morty have bothered sending a note? "Just that you must be getting really desperate if you're trying to pick up gym leaders."

"They're the perfect example of 'brawn meets brain', though," Blue complained. "Besides, can you think of anyone better able to protect me?"

Me. "No," Green said, trying to dismiss the tendril of thought that had crept in. "I suppose you're right."

Blue rested a hand on top of his for a minute. "I guess I could take a break," she said. "Clear my perspective, and all that stuff." Green relaxed.

Blue's idea of a 'break' was to drag Green everywhere she had gone with her previous boyfriends. "You can tell me if they were actually trying to be romantic, or just stupid," she said when he complained. "You're my insight into the male psyche."

"I have challengers," he complained. "People actually come to the gym again, trying to earn the Earth Badge. I'm no Giovanni – I can't abandon my gym for my own purposes."

"Make half of your gym challenge finding you," Blue said. "Or train up a team to fight without you. You're the trainer – you should be able to do that, shouldn't you?"

"I'm not going to create a team to fight challengers just so you can drag me places," Green protested.

Blue gave him a look. "Make the team."

He made the team. While most of the pokémon didn't take well to just sitting around and waiting for trainers to show up, they admittedly worked extremely well together and eventually even learned the concept of tagging each other in and out during battles on their own. It turned out to be a brilliant idea for when Green was actually busy. Green was busy fine-tuning the hologram technology and its link to the case with the Earth Badge, when Red showed up, Yellow in tow.

"Haven't seen you in a while," Red said, scanning the gym, "so I decided to come here and see how you were doing. You didn't change the inside much, did you?"

"No need," Green replied, tightening a nut on the underside of the control panel before crawling back out. "I don't have a type I'm aiming for, so a plain surface works the best."

"Plain surface, eh?" Red grinned. "Want to prove that with a spar?"

Green smirked back. "My pleasure –"

He was cut off by the beeping of his pokégear. He pulled it out. "Hello?"

"Green!" Blue's voice chirped out over the tinny speakers. "There's a new movie that just came out at the theaters, and if we hurry now, I know someone who can get us tickets for the premiere! Come and pick me up, will you?"

"I'm in the middle of a battle!" Green protested. "Why do you need to see the first showing, anyway?"

He could hear Blue's smirk over the gear. "It's a matter of principle," she said. "And you're not in the middle of a battle, or you never would have answered your gear. Cut it off and come back – I'll ask Daisy to let me into your room and pick out clothes for you."

"I don't need you to pick out clothes for me," Green said, resolutely ignoring Red's laugh. "Because we're not going. I have a spar with Red I need to finish."

"Aw, come on!" Blue said. "It's this adorable film about a little skitty that gets kidnapped, and the owner's boyfriend goes to find it only to discover a conspiracy theory, and it has Preston Davies in it–"

Yellow squealed. "'Running Wild'?" she asked, grabbing the gear away from Green. "Blue, you can get midnight premiere tickets to 'Running Wild'?"

"Yellow!" Blue sounded delighted. "Help me convince these boys that we need to go see it."

"Oh, Red, please?" Yellow begged. "I know you've been looking forward to your battle with Green, but can't you have it after the movie?"

"Ah…" Even after four years, Red was still helpless when a woman asked him for something. It was up to Green if the two of them wanted to look anything other than whipped –

"Please?" Blue asked over the gear.

Green growled. "Obnoxious, noisy, interfering woman!"

"See you in fifteen," Blue said.

The plot of the movie was completely asinine, and Blue kept on elbowing Green every time he pointed out a plot hole. The switching between the stunt pokémon and the actual ones was obvious, the villains were completely one-dimensional, and Green was really sick of hearing every girl in the theater squeal every time the hero came onscreen. The only consolation he could take from watching it was that Blue had somehow convinced Red to pay for all of them, and so none of his money had been wasted on the travesty.

"Do you have any idea what's going on?" Red hissed at him over Yellow and Blue's heads.

"They're busy besmirching the name of movies everywhere," Green said back, before wincing as Blue hit him. "What was that for?"

"Shh!" Blue whispered, before gasping, hands clasped together, as the hero took the heroine in his arms. "Oh, isn't that romantic? He's finally going to tell Fiona how he feels about her!"

"No," Green said, rolling his eyes as the hero started using mediocre similes to describe the heroine's features. "It was poorly timed, obviously stuck in at the last minute, and they should be focusing more on escaping the exploding building than reciting – damn it, woman, would you stop elbowing me?"

"Oh, Craig," the heroine said, and everyone sighed – although it was annoyance on Green's part rather than any emotional attachment to the film. "Of course I'll be yours."

"Kill me now," Red muttered. Green agreed wholeheartedly.

After the credits rolled, the entire theater was forced to wait as the attending actors left. The women in the theater didn't seem to mind that much, screaming as the actors walked by.

Blue opened her mouth, but was cut off as Green grabbed her arm. "If you yell something moronic like 'Marry me!' the way these other idiots are, I refuse to be seen with you in public ever again," he hissed in her ear.

Blue smirked, turning around to face him as the leading actors walked by their aisle. "What, jealous?" she yelled over the din.

"Of that pretentious fop?" Green yelled back. "Hardly."

"You know, you could take some lessons in romance from Preston," Blue said as the actors disappeared through the double doors and the crowd began to quiet down.

"Right," Green said as the group got to their feet and began to leave. "Next time I'm in an exploding underground hideout, I'll make sure to get myself killed while I'm confessing to the girl of my dreams, instead of doing something useful like saving our lives."

"Not just that!" Blue looked annoyed. "For example, what would you do if one of my pokémon got kidnapped? You wouldn't go and hunt it down."

"Someone running one past you to kidnap one of your pokémon?" Green snorted. "The heroine was a brainless simpering twit – nothing like you at all."

"Well, yes," Blue said, smiling at the compliment. "Nobody would be able to pull one over me, would they, Green?"

"Annoying woman," Green muttered. "I already said that."

"Oh, but I want to hear you say it again," Blue said, snickering a bit as Yellow asked Red how he had liked the film and Red started falling over himself to pretend that he had paid the slightest bit of attention.

"Fine – you would be more likely to be the kidnapper than the one kidnapped from," Green said. "Satisfied?"

"Hardly," Blue said, sniffing. "You'll have to do much better than that. I want ice cream."

"It's three in the morning!" Green protested. "Nothing's going to be open!"

"Daisy's got a stash in your freezer, doesn't she?" Blue asked, and Green marveled at the fact that she knew his sister so well. "I asked her to buy Fudge Ripple last time she went out. We can eat that."

"Ice cream party over at Green's place?" Red asked, anxious to get away from those nagging little details about the movie Yellow was talking about – namely, the plot. "Sounds like a plan."

"Since when?" Green asked. "Go back to your own houses and eat ice cream. I want to go to sleep – you're not invited over, none of you."

"Oh, really?" Blue asked, smirking, and Green's blood chilled. "You know, yesterday Daisy showed me these photo albums, compiled from pictures from when you were about three years old. And the centerpiece of this one album was a picture of –"

"You get your damn ice cream, then get out," Green said, cursing his sister's tendency when she was younger to dress him up. And what the hell was she thinking, showing baby pictures to his friends, anyway? Last time he tried to burn them, she said that she was saving them to embarrass him in front of his first girlfriend – something Blue was most definitely not. Retaliation was in order – perhaps pictures from her disastrous tenth birthday party mailed to Bill, who, against all expectations, she hadn't dumped yet.

"I knew you would see things my way!" Blue grabbed onto Green's arm as they began the walk back to his house. "Oh, and I was totally right," she whispered in his ear as Red and Yellow shot the two of them confused looks. "Enough hair gel, and you do look good in drag."

"Why are we here, again?" Green asked Blue over the din of the party.

Blue rolled her eyes. "You know. If you don't want to say it, call it us celebrating the fact that the world was saved, and that we didn't have to do it this time," she said. "Is that enough of a reason for you?"

Green refused to give up. "But why here?" he asked. "Why not just a bunch of feel-good televised moments that we can watch and forget about the instant it's done?"

"Four years and you're still as stiff as the day I met you," Blue said in a mournful tone. "And would you stop glaring at the people who come up and ask me to dance? It's getting real old, real fast."

"If they're scared away by a single glare they shouldn't be around you in the first place," Green said, fixing said glare on a man who had let his hand linger too long near the back of Blue's seat. He edged away.

Blue sighed. "It's not even like they're asking me out," she said. "It was cute watching you intimidate people bigger than you when you were twelve – not so much at fifteen."

"You have no idea what their motives are," Green said, looking darkly at the dance floor. "If they get lost with you in the crowd I have no way of telling where you are."

"There's a simple solution to that," Blue said. "Get up and dance, too."

Green looked away. "I'm not a big fan of making a fool of myself in front of this many people," he said. "There's nothing wrong with just sitting on the sidelines."

"I have had it up to here with you!" Blue stood. "And I'm fed up with waiting. I'm sixteen and perfectly capable of taking care of myself. If you want to sit there and sulk over missing a great battle for the rest of the evening, have fun. I'm going to dance." She stalked forwards, disappearing into the milling throng of people.

"I'm not sulking," Green muttered, eyes trying to track Blue as she moved to the music. "I'm glad I don't have to worry about two rampaging monster pokémon trying to destroy Hoenn."

"Where's Blue?" Red asked as he and Yellow stopped in front of the table Green was sitting at. Green gestured to the floor, and Yellow frowned. "You're not with her?"

"I'm not that woman's babysitter, as she was so kind to point out," Green said. "And it's refreshing to get some time away from her."

"Really?" Red asked. "Because every time I've tried to find you recently, you've always been saying stuff like 'I'm busy getting dragged a restaurant by Blue', or 'Saturday's a Blue day, I can't make it', and stuff like that."

"I have not," Green said, ordering his memory to destroy the matching cards that were popping up. "You make it sound like we're dating."

Red started. "You aren't?"

"Of course he isn't," Yellow said, sitting down. "If he was, he'd be yelling at that guy who was talking to Blue–"

"Where?" Green located Blue again, and his eyes narrowed when he saw the sleazebag she was speaking to. He stood, heading in their direction.

Blue noticed him before he got there, and her eyes widened. "Don't even think about it," she mouthed at him.

He ignored her, and arrived just as the guy was saying, "So, wanna dance?"

"She's already promised this next one to me," Green said, reaching the two of them and wrapping an arm around Blue's waist. Blue, about to berate him, stopped in mid-yell for some reason.

"Oh." The guy looked disappointed, but his face lit up again. "How about the one after that?"

"Also taken," Green said, guiding her away.

"Sorry, Kenny," Blue called back over her shoulder. "I guess it wasn't meant to be." Smile fixed in place, she said, "Don't think you're getting out of dancing."

"Annoying woman," Green said, sighing as he faced her, wrapping his other arm around her midsection. "Dragging me out here, when you know I'm no good at this. You're lucky we're friends."

Blue brushed a piece of hair out of his face before resting her hands on his shoulders. "Yeah," she said. "I guess I am."

As the boatloads of trainers began to swamp the Battle Frontier and Blue started eyeing some of the men speculatively, Green decided that enough was enough. They had almost gotten killed one time too many, and if he was going to be beating suitors off with a stick he might as well get the benefits involved with such a position. He couldn't risk losing her, anyways.

Remembering her penchant for romance, Green brought Blue to the top of the Battle Pike that night, and thanked his lucky stars that it was a full moon, so the two of them wouldn't have to stumble everywhere trying to get there.

"You know," he said as Blue admired the view, "It would probably be beneficial for both of us if we were to go out."

Blue nodded absently. "I know," she said, and Green gritted his teeth. He was hoping that she would pick up on the hint, laugh at him for a few minutes, and then consent to date him, but either she was ignoring him or she wanted him to spell it out.

"Blue," he said. "Will you go out with me?"

"Well, yes," Blue said, pulling out her Silph Scope to examine something in the distance. "Where do you want to go?"

"That's not it!" Green growled. "You're being deliberately obtuse, woman."

"As in, would I date you?" Blue asked, turning to face him. As Green nodded, she smiled and patted his shoulder. "We already are, aren't we?"

Green blinked. "What?"

"Well, anyone could tell that you didn't mean 'just friends' when you said 'just friends' all those years ago," Blue said. "The insincerity was obvious. I took it to mean you wanted an open relationship."

Green's eyes widened. All those lunches that he made her pay for, all that shopping, Blue's insistence that she wouldn't be serious with anyone who couldn't manage their money…

"Right," he said, a bit dazed. "We were going out, after all."

"Of course we were," Blue said. "Why do you think they chose a pyramid for a shape? So gauche. The gym leaders have come up with thirty-two gyms that were all different; was it really so hard to design seven individual buildings?"

"They're known as 'brains' for their battling instincts, not their architectural abilities," Green said, before another thought struck him. "I don't our relationship to be open anymore, though," he said. "I want it to just be us."

"Oh, Green," Blue said, shaking her head. "You really haven't been paying attention, have you? We've been going steady for at least the last year and a half."

Green opened his mouth, but no sound came out. "Eh?" he finally managed.

"I haven't been dating anyone else," Blue said, eyes narrowed. "Just admiring them from a distance. You really don't remember? You took me dancing on the one-year anniversary of the day I broke up with the last other person I dated."

"That was…" The day of the party to celebrate Hoenn's saviors. It was the fourth day after Ruby and Sapphire had stopped kyogre and groudon, and you would have thought that the parties would be dying down, but Blue was awfully insistent on going to that particular one… "The twenty-second of September."

"At least you remember the date, if not the event," Blue said, sighing. "I don't believe this. Yellow said I should say something, and that you weren't just shy, but I didn't think you'd be even more oblivious than Red was about us dating…"

"I am not!" Green said, throwing his hands up in the air. "Damn it, woman, you're just like those psychics – always talking about important stuff and refusing to actually say what you mean! You're obnoxious, annoying, too talkative, and secretive as hell, and I have no clue why I can't think of life without you!"

Blue's eyes widened for a minute, then she leaned close and slipped an arm around his waist – a gesture, Green abruptly realized, that had been going on for quite some time now. "That's the most romantic thing you've actually said to me," she said, leaning her cheek against his shoulder. "Why do you always have to mix your romance in with belligerence?"

Green sighed a sigh that was practically a growl. "You inspire it," he said, wrapping an arm around her shoulders. "Noisy, overdramatic woman…"

"Yeah," Blue said, closing her eyes. "I love you too."