[It starts with]

Loosely based upon the mp3 entitled Autumn of Life, found on any Tenchi Muyo fansite. Song also heard on the Tenchi Muyo series episodes, No Need for Ryoko, and No Need for a Conclusion.

Name/Character List:
Satoshi - Ash - 17
Kasumi - Misty - 19
Shigeru - Gary - 17
Takeshi - Brock - 21
Hiroshi - Richie - 17
Kojiro - James - 26
Musashi - Jessie - 26
Nyaasu - Meowth

I wish I could find a way to tell him how I really feel. The darkness concealed the true identity of the thinker, masked the persons emotions. The stars glittered overhead like a handful of diamonds tossed absently onto the blackest velvet surface.

Wind briefly tugged at the figures clothes, misted through the longish hair like the fingers of a lover, and the person looked up at the sky.

"Someday, I'll tell you the truth," the voice was low and husky with emotion, "Someday."

Sudden shrieks of laughter interrupted Shigeru's daydreams. With a low growl of annoyance, he opened one sapphire blue eye and looked over at the interruption. From his place under the leafy boughs of an oak tree, he could see the three humans and several Pokemon as they cavorted by the lake. Shigeru snorted in lazy amusement. Satoshi had just tossed Kasumi into the lake, with the help of Takeshi, and the red-head was sputtering her irritation despite the broad smile on her face.

It was another lazy summer day just outside of Shion Town, and Shigeru would have been enjoying it if it wasn't for one thing.

He was on suspension...again.

It wasn't like he'd done anything really bad, more of an annoyance to his grandfather than anything. Okay, so perhaps it was bad. He'd sold one of the more valuable Pokemon his grandfather had been raising so he could finally get his hooks into a bright yellow convertible. His latest girlfriend, Melody, had dropped hints of being able to 'prove' her undying love to him if he had a convertible, and who was he to say no to an adoring female?

He was about to continue his previously interrupted indulgence in another "Melody-in-skimpy-attire" fantasy, when Satoshi's Pikachu came bounding up with cries of, "Pipipi!!"

Once again, Shigeru cracked open an eye, unfortunately not seeing Melody in a bikini.

"Briii!!" The egg Pokemon trilled, not even a foot from his face. Shigeru groaned and swiped an arm at the irritating baby Pokemon. He was in no mood for cuteness; Melody was about to take her top off.

Unfortunately, while Shigeru had missed touching the Togepi, the small creature had tottered backwards to avoid the swipe, and it shrilled in fear as it lost its balance and toppled backwards, rolling back down the hill.

Pikachu darted after it, catching it before it rolled three feet, and steadied the baby on its feet. With a glare in Shigeru's direction, Pikachu released a small shock of electricity towards the arrogant youth. It hit dead on, shocking Shigeru out of his fantasy, and singeing the ends of his spiky hair.

"KETCHUM!!!" Shigeru howled, leaping to his feet. With a look of murder in his eyes, he ran after Pikachu, who had gathered Togepi in it's front arms and was darting towards the safety Satoshi would provide.

Satoshi spun around, a blank look on his face. "What...?"

Kasumi blinked water out of her eyes, brushing back a lock of radiant red hair, "Satoshi, I think Shigeru is really pissed off!"

With a toss as it darted past Kasumi, Pikachu threw Togepi into her open arms, and then sprung up onto Satoshi's bare shoulders. Unfortunately, the move threw Satoshi from his already precarious position on a slippery boulder on the shore of the lake, and the two fell with a splash into the shallow waters of the lake.

Shigeru stopped running, stifled a snort of laughter, and waited for Satoshi to resurface. When the young trainer did resurface, Shigeru tried to not laugh at the strand of lake greenery hanging from a lock of Satoshi's hair. Takeshi and Kasumi weren't as successful, and even had Togepi laughing at the sight.

"Funny guys," Satoshi pouted, grabbing at the slimy aquatic plant and tossed it backwards. It hit Pikachu right between the eyes, and the Pokemon shook it off with a glare. "Sorry, buddy," Satoshi apologized, a smile in his mahogany eyes. "I guess I need to work on that balance act."

"Hey, it's getting late," Kasumi said, watching Togepi yawn sleepily. Though it wasn't dark yet, it was nearing seven at night, time for getting home. "I think we should start packing up." A breeze blew over the lake, chilly fingers of the night to come washing over them.

"Whatever," Shigeru said, shrugging into his black windbreaker. He took a seat on the rough surface of the picnic table and watched the rest get their things together. Kasumi was toweling off, leaving the towel around her neck as she slipped into a pair of shorts. He stared, unblinking, as she suddenly dropped the towel on the ground and pulled a white tank top on, the dampness of her blue bikini top seeping through the thin material.

Takeshi recalled his Pokemon, two rock types, and then got the remains their picnic dinner together. He closed the top of the picnic basket, and looked up at Shigeru. "How many more days does your...sentence...last?"

Shigeru sighed, pausing before replying, "Only another week of dealing with you losers, then I'm free."

Takeshi's eyes hardened, "You know we talk to your grandfather each night, tell him your progress." Shigeru didn't say a word, only stared at Takeshi.

"We haven't been telling him you've shirked your duties." Takeshi said softly, "Though I think your sentence should've been carried out by Officer Junsa, and not your grandfather."

"He doesn't think I did anything wrong." Shigeru shot back, just as softly. "And I'd do it again." Then he sat back on his elbows, looking up at the cloudless sky. "It's not the worst thing I've ever done. The old man doesn't know the half of what I've done."

"Oh? Like what?"

"Like..." Shigeru caught himself, and stared at Takeshi, "...Like things that would make you run home to your mommy."

Takeshi blanched, "My mother is dead."

"I know," Shigeru drawled out. "But what I've done is..."

"C'mon guys! Let's go!" Satoshi broke in, dragging Takeshi away. Kasumi held Togepi in one arm, the basket in another.

"Let's go, Prince Charming," She said angrily. Obviously, she'd heard their exchange.

"Whatever you say, Princess," He smirked, sliding off the table and sauntering ahead of her, with nothing in his hands.

They got within ten minutes of Shion before the attack came.

A net dropped upon them, making them fall to their knees.

"What's going on?" Shigeru cried out.

"I'll make one guess, and it's my bet I'm right...aren't I..Roketto Dan?!" Satoshi spat out, glaring angrily in all directions.

A small explosion rang out and a burst of white smoke clouded an area in front of Shigeru.

"He's right for once," A female voice rang out.

"And on the double!" A male voice chimed in.

"Oh skip it!" A second, and annoyed sounding, male voice broke in, "They know the routine by now."

The smoke cleared with a sudden gust of wind, revealing Musashi, Kojiro, and Nyaasu standing by a Nyaasu shaped hot-air balloon. Musashi had a glass container in her hands, and Pikachu was in it!

"Pikachu!" Satoshi wailed, "Give Pikachu back to me!"

"Ah ah ah!" Kojiro sang out, "Not until you say the magic word!"


"Uh, okay," Kojiro looked miffed, "I guess..."

"Kojiro!!" Musashi snapped, setting the Pikachu contained container on the edge of the hot-air balloon basket, "We are NOT giving back Pikachu! We're taking the little rat straight back to the Boss."

"Dat's right, and then he'll see me for the poifect cat I am!" Nyaasu's eyes got starry and he seemed to be in his own little world.

"But I said please! What else do you want?" Satoshi was crying now.

This is pathetic! Does he expect them to just hand Pikachu over? Shigeru sighed, I guess I'd better do something.

"Takeshi, we have to do something," Kasumi said softly. "We can't let them get away with this!" In her arms, Togepi wailed softly. "Shh, baby, they won't get you."

"They won't get any of our Pokemon," Shigeru said. "And Pikachu is coming back with us."

"Whaa?" Satoshi sniffled. "What are you talking about?"

"Yes, what are you talking about?" Musashi demanded, walking closer.

"I'm talking," Shigeru said, fingering the Pokeball in his hand, "About this..." And he threw the Pokeball through an opening in the net, releasing the beast inside.

The Arcanine roared, feeling its master's anger. Musashi squealed, backed into Kojiro, who backed into Nyaasu. They tumbled into a heap at the base of the hot-air balloon. Pikachu cheered from its position in the glass container on the edge of the balloon's basket.

"Shut up, you!" Musashi snapped.

"Arcanine, burn a hole in this net and free us!" Shigeru commanded, "But be careful not to burn us. I just got my hair done."

The powerful fire-dog nodded and carefully toasted a human sized hole in the easily burnt net. Within seconds, they were free and standing tall and proud.

"Enough of this!" Musashi glowered, "Arbok, go!"

"Wheezing, go!" Kojiro grinned madly, "Join in the fun!"

"Go," Satoshi began to cry. "Pikachuuuu!!!"

"Geeze, Satoshi!" Kasumi rolled her eyes, "Go, Poliwhirl!"

"Geodude, go!" Takeshi ordered.

The battle began in earnest then.

Shigeru sailed through the battle, reveling in it. Suddenly, Musashi began to play dirty.

"Arbok, poison sting the crybaby!!" She pointed at Satoshi, madness glimmering in her eyes.

"Satoshi!" Kasumi fretted, too far from her beloved.

Satoshi was frozen in place, shocked by the actions of the huge snake. Shigeru leapt into action, as he was the closest, and darted to the right, where Satoshi was. Unfortunately, Geodude had been tackled by Wheezing, and the flying rock type crashed into Shigeru's left side, throwing the arrogant male into the line of fire of the Poison sting attack.

For the first time in public, Shigeru cried out in pain, then gasped as the poison hit him. Luckily, the hit from Geodude had knocked him from being hit by the full poison sting attack, and it had the desired effect of protecting Satoshi, but he was still poisoned.

Within seconds, Shigeru fainted, and the sounds of battle faded to black.

Uh-oh, what's gonna happen next? Will Shigeru be okay? Did Satoshi get Pikachu back? Did Team Rocket blast off again? All this and more in the next chapter of...tO eXPLAINE iN dUE tIME!