AN: So. Here we are again. The story of a little Chimchar against the world that just won't get out of my head.

I've gone through and fixed a bunch of little things, such as awkward wordings and continuity, but it's otherwise been preserved as is. After all, it was an experience for me the first time through. As I always said, enjoy.

"You stupid Pokémon! Why won't you listen to me?!"

Why did the kid expect him to? These ten year olds could be so ignorant, and this one had a temper to boot. But why on earth would you ever order a fire type to use Ember on a water Pokémon, even if it was a Magikarp?

"Come on, Chimchar, just beat it for me, won't you?" Why should he? He would just be insulted again…

The Magikarp blinked its vacant eyes and swam away. The boy pouted, and Kevin sighed. Another lecture in three, two, one…

"You know Chimchar, you're being really stupid. You're a Pokémon, and they battle for trainers. That's the rule. You do what the trainer tells you, and in return we give you food and water and a Pokéball to sleep in, so why don't you just battle? If that had been a Bidoof, it would have finished you." The boy, whose name was Simon, crossed his arms and threw the Pokéball at Kevin to return him.

Kevin dodged it in a heartbeat. All right, this kid needed to be taught a lesson. Walking right up to the kid and staring him in the face, he glared with as much intensity as he could manage and then began to speak.

"You know what kid? I had food and water and shelter before you got a hold of me, so don't think I can't live my life by myself. And F.Y.I., you generally don't attack water Pokémon with fire attacks, or use potions when we're not exhausted, or do anything else as dumb as that. Frankly, I think that you're the stupid one and that I should be teaching you a thing or two about battling. Got that?"

If he were back home, Kevin would have expected the kid to scream or be scared or something, but Simon just sassed him back. "Last time I checked, Chimchar, I was the trainer, got that?"

Kevin stepped back, still glaring. Where the hell was he, anyway? It was cold and snowy and all the Pokémon could talk… But, he was the only one who knew how. He was special… right?

Cutting his thoughts short, he retorted back. "Well, if you're the trainer, and you think that a Bidoof's stronger than me, then why don't you just catch one of them instead?" Please let him go…

"Maybe I will," sneered Simon, and he started glancing around. Route 219 didn't usually have any Bidoof, from what Kevin could tell, but there was a girl with one on some sort of a picnic. Rushing up to her and dragging Kevin along behind him, he tapped her shoulder. "Hey, wanna trade?"

The girl eyed him carefully, then clutched her Pokéballs protectively. "Not my Turtwig."

Simon smiled, and then pointed to her Bidoof. "No, I wanted that one. He looks tough."

The Bidoof rolled his eyes. Kevin silently agreed with him, also being tired of being addressed as an object. Humans were… Well, humans. Pokémon were slightly more valuable than a pair of nice shoes.

"For what?" asked the girl, staring at him weirdly. She didn't get what was so special about her Bidoof, and neither did he, but Kevin guessed Simon just wanted to get rid of his problem.

"For my Chimchar here, please?" That interested her. Now looking at Kevin, she smiled, her eyes lighting up with what Kevin could only pin down as greed. Yeah, yeah, Chimchar were rare, Kevin knew that, but she didn't have to be so transparent about it. She grinned, nodding.

"Okay, sure. We don't have to go use a machine, do we? I mean, it'd be easier to just trade here," Trainers could be damn lazy, too. Then again, those machines were rather pointless.

Simon grinned and handed her Kevin's Pokéball as he took the Bidoof's. "He's all yours," he said, and he quickly ran off with the Bidoof in tow.

Smiling, the girl turned to Kevin. "Hi there, I'm Lana. I guess I'm your trainer now," she said, tilting her head sheepishly. She took out two Pokéballs. "I'm just starting out, so I only have two others with me, but here they are."

The Pokéballs dropped and revealed a Starly and Turtwig. The Starly was younger than he was and looked quite pleased with himself, but the Turtwig was at least in her twenties and looked morbidly discontent with everything ever. Kevin stared at her left eye, which was adorned with a scar, and she snapped at him.

"Hey, you. Yes, I have a scar. I don't like to talk about it. I'm Kari, the kid is Styler, now who are you?" She spoke rough English, or so Kevin thought, until she added, "And yeah, I don't speak that well. So what?"

Kevin, still staring, muttered, "And I thought that kid was unfriendly. Is everyone in this place like this?"

She frowned, narrowing her eyes. "No, Sinnoh's not that bad. But if you tick me off, kid, you're going to regret it." In what was supposed to be an intimidating glare, she attempted to tower over him with her eyes. It sort of worked, but not for the intended target.

"Um… so who are you?" asked Styler, trying not to show his discomfort around Kari. Kevin felt a little sorry for the kid.

"My name…" Kevin started, then stopped himself. Crazy people in a crazy place should not know who you are. Stranger danger and all that. So, nicknames. Well, he hadn't exactly used it in a while, but… "It's Chump."

Kari's eyes opened wide. "Are you serious? You call yourself a word synonymous with loser? Geez, kid, have you no self respect at all?" Stomping the ground and looking upwards to nothing in particular, she opened her mouth. "Chump... really?"

Kevin grimaced. It had been an event the day he'd learned that "chump" and "champ" were not the same thing. What a crushing blow to his six year old self. "Well... it's just a... temporary nickname. I'll think of something better soon." It felt awkward to speak in plain human without feeling awkward. As Kevin tried to wrap his head around exactly what that meant, Styler chirruped.

"You named yourself? Cool! How old are you, Chump?" he asked brightly. Kevin managed to smile a little.

"Fourteen," he replied shortly. Kari eyed him peculiarly, squinting as she did so. Kevin caught a flash of milky white before it quickly disappeared.

Lana smiled at all of them. "Well, it's nice to see that you seem to get along," she said. Kari resumed glaring at him. "Um, Chump, we've already gotten our first badge in Oreburgh, so we're heading to Eterna City next. That's a Grass type gym, so, um, would you participate in the battle?"

Kevin shrugged. "Depends on how good you are. And actually, could you not say we seem to get along and things like that? Because I think it's pretty obvious that not all of us do," He glared back. Styler smiled nervously.

Lana blinked. "Oh... okay. Sorry. I'm still not used to you speaking and stuff, and I was kinda taught what it was like before..."

Before. How long ago was before? But before Kevin could ask, they were all in their Pokéballs once again. Yeesh, this girl would have to be taught some lessons too.

They were released later that evening, the November sky dyed red with the sunset. Apparently it was time for dinner. Even though they'd just had a picnic. Dumb Pokéballs…

Kevin studied his new trainer. She looked to be about ten, if not slightly older, with straight black hair and a pink shirt with some sort of happy, smiling heart on it. There wasn't much else to her, really. He wouldn't be able to pick her out of a crowd. She was currently rummaging through her bag, pulling out muffins, fruit, and lemonade meant for their meal. No kibble in sight, unlike what the brat had tried to feed him. That was a good sign.

He yawned, and then glanced over to Styler. The young bird was fluttering around, but he wasn't exactly doing anything else interesting. A quick glance at Kari revealed that she was eyeing him again, making Kevin turn away. She actually was kind of creepy with her death glares and all.

"All right!" said Lana with an exasperated sigh. "Um… I don't know about you guys, but I think I've decided on our future team members. Would you like to know what they'll be?"

Styler nodded happily while Kevin and Kari stayed silent. He shrugged, putting his hands behind his head. At least this would be interesting. If she was really all for battling competitively and planning things out, then she'd be the best trainer he could ask for.

Lana nodded redundantly, launching into an explanation. "Okay. Obviously, we need a water type, since they're really useful in a lot of situations, so I think I'll try to catch a Buizel." Pausing, she grinned. "I mean, they're cute and strong, and they're my favourite Pokémon, so… um… right."

Kari had taken on a bitter expression as soon as she mentioned favouritism. Kevin raised an eyebrow. She could sure be uptight. There was nothing wrong with having a favourite Pokémon. Everyone battled differently, after all, and if Lana liked playing a certain way, she was definitely allowed to.

"Moving on… I think having an electric type is important too, but everybody has a Shinx. I think I'm going to get either Pikachu or Pachirisu— What?"

Kevin was snickering. "Well, they aren't exactly that good."

Glaring, Kari turned her head towards him. "You kids. Power is all that matters, is it? And yet you call yourself Chump…" Looking disgusted, she laid her head back down, grumbling.

He frowned, but said nothing more. Was it really worth the effort to mouth off some angsty old crab who hated your guts for no reason? Kevin was about to reconsider when Styler interrupted his thoughts.

"Well, I agree. The Shinx hate us, so…" He trailed off, hoping that they'd catch his drift.

"Okay. Whichever we see first, we catch. Now then… I was kind of expecting to have to get a fire type the hard way, but… well, I think I want another normal type. Any ideas?" Lana asked, still looking kind of awkward. Kevin really didn't blame her.

"Eevee," he said. Kari snorted.

"Moron, Eevee doesn't stay normal type," she said.

Kevin nodded. "Exactly. Normal isn't good against anything. They're pretty well rounded, I'll give you that, but you've already got a bird. If you get one and train it while rounding out the rest of your team, you'll figure out where your weaknesses are and with seven types to choose from—"

"Eight," Lana said. "Aren't there?"

"What? Fire, electric, water, psychic, dark… Uh, grass and ice, and… What am I missing?" Kevin asked.

Styler replied. "Oh, there's the really rare and pretty pink one, right? I forgot its name…"

Lana nodded. "Yeah, Sylveon. It's really hard to evolve Eevee into that, though, so they're not that well known. I think they only discovered it, like, five years ago. But anyway, I kind of like normal types. It's not like they're that bad, either." She smiled. "I was kind of thinking that a Glameow would be cool."

Kari sighed. "There's no rush, you know. The League isn't until the end of the year."

Styler hopped over to Kari. "That's only two months, though! That's not much time at all for training, let alone getting all the badges. Otherwise, we'll have to wait until June."

"Which is probably the smarter thing to do, seeing as it took us a week to train for the first badge," Kari said matter-of-factly. "And that was with Bips."

"Um…" Kevin started. "Wait a minute. What's the date?"

"Hm? October twenty-second," said Lana with a mouthful of muffin.

Kevin blinked. "But that's not right."

"What do you mean, 'that's not right'?" asked Kari, raising an eyebrow.

"I mean, that means my birthday's tomorrow, but…" Trailing off, he stopped himself. Wherever this place was, things were not right. Which, logically, would mean that the people weren't right either. Well, maybe not, but it was probably better if he trusted someone before revealing any personal information. Sighing, he shook his head. "Never mind. I guess I forgot."

Kari smirked. "Forgot your own birthday? Yeesh, kid."

Styler perked up. "Oh! So that means that you're turning fifteen tomorrow! Cool!"

"Um, no."

"What?" Styler asked, hopping a few paces over to Kevin.

"Um, well, I thought I'd say I was fourteen because I was so close to being fourteen, you know?" He laughed.

Kari narrowed her eyes, tilting her head at the same time. "But just now you didn't remember the date, Chump."

Kevin grinned nervously. "Yeah, whatever. That's not important. Anyway… Let's eat, I'm starved."

Inside his Pokéball, Kevin frowned. It could be another time zone. He was definitely far away enough, climate-wise, for that to be a possibility. But he didn't think that time zones were an entire week behind others. It had already been his birthday… hadn't it?

He had celebrated it. Living in the wild though, his family could have messed up the dates enough to be a week behind. Yeah, that was probably it. If that was the case, then he should probably call his mom and correct her.

They had phones in this place, right? He thought he remembered seeing one in the Pokémon Center, but it wasn't like the ones they had at home. Actually, none of the things he'd seen looked like the things at home. What did Kari call it again? Sinnoh? He'd heard of it, he was sure, but he had no idea where that was in relation to Hoenn. hopefully, the Pokémon Centers here had maps, too. He'd just have to wait and see.