Author's Note: This story is supposed to take place during the Diamond and Pearl series. As I have not watched Pokémon regularly for a while, I may have the characters' Pokémon teams wrong. I hope you enjoy anyway!

Prologue

"Staraptor, use Wing Attack!" Ash Ketchum called. His gray and white bird Pokémon obeyed, knocking his opponent's Tyrogue to the ground. "Yes!" shouted in triumph. Dawn, Brock, and Pikachu cheered. The other trainer snarled in frustration.

Unbeknownst to the battlers, some others stood watching them from a nearby hill. One was a young boy, maybe ten or eleven, wearing a green shirt, white capris, and glasses. On his right stood a Kirlia, and on his left an older girl sat astride a Rapidash. She wore light brown clothes and had her brunette hair pulled back in a braid.

"Is that him?" the girl asked, not taking her gaze from the battle.

"Yes," the boy replied. "That's Ash, all right."

They stood unspeaking for a few moments.

"He is a trainer," the girl broke the silence. "He makes his Pokémon fight."

"We can trust him," the boy said quickly, looking up at his companion. "I trust him. He's a good guy. He takes good care of his Pokémon. Brock, too. I don't know the girl, but if Ash is traveling with her then he must trust her, so I trust her, too."

The girl said nothing, but the boy noticed her fist was clenched. He glanced back at the battle—Ash, having won, had put Staraptor back in its Pokéball.

"Kirlia," said the Kirlia. The Rapidash bent its head forward in a nod.

The girl sighed. "All right," she said. "We will trust him, Max…for now."

Author's Note: It's not very long, but this is a prologue and my first story. Please review!