world – game
notes – inspired by the prompt: 'a ship in harbour is safe, but that's not why ships are built'.
The Variable Star
She wanted to be a gym leader, a coordinator, a professor, maybe even a pokémon champion.
When she was young she had many inclinations for her choosing; it was not uncommon for a girl of her social status to be granted whatever she desired in excess. She was wealthy, educated, talented and proudly intelligent, but that was not the sole reason why numerous people envied her.
She was notably easy on the eyes, with a polar green gaze and golden brown hair and an ideal laugh that her parents associated with pretty adjectives like warm and soft. She was cushioned by her sheltered lifestyle, remaining buoyant with the amount of time her mother and father lost in order to dote on her. There were so many things within her reach, so many dreams she could collect and label with her name – and it had been a glamorous, pleasant-sounding name that fitted her indefinitely.
At least, that was what everyone assumed.
She could even become an astronaut if she fancied. Her family had just enough money to spend and sufficiently unconditional hearts to wrap and bundle around her wishes. But when it was so inexplicably easy to obtain, could it necessarily be called a 'dream'? She exhaled a dull sigh, and continued to finish her math homework.
The idea of travelling to space had not been completely attractive; nothing really was when it came so easy. There were many things to pursue, but nothing to actually yearn for. She found no joy in touching the moon, when all she had to do was to ask for it. Her social construction somehow shaped her into a competitive and decisive person, held up high by who – and what – she was, from as early as the age of twelve.
She revelled in picking on the purple-haired girl in her class, the annoying loud one who was not as well-to-do as her, not as beautiful as her, and who certainly was not as smart as her. Those uncontrollable tears and scandalized screams still made her chuckle every now and again upon recollection. Those were the kinds of things that required effort to achieve, the kinds of things she found interesting when she reaped the results she so anticipated.
Boys were even more of a problem because of the very fact that they proved naught to her – all of them threw themselves willingly at her feet without giving much of a fight. And for those that didn't, they attempted to sway her emotions by going for the cold and distant routine, which was an even more pathetic display of social skills put on show for her to view.
There was one classmate in her younger days who had tried it on her, purposefully avoiding her when she spoke to him and refusing to take the papers she helped the teacher to pass out. It was deliciously amusing when his undying crush was horrifyingly revealed to her via his diary – yes, diary – getting snatched away by her keen eyes working in tandem with her quick reflexes. And, well, maybe a part of her that was always waiting to pounce and disillusion him from his own fraud.
She couldn't place a picture to his face because she never bothered to ingrain him in her mind. She could only recall angry eyes, pale skin and navy hair. But the small taste of power and delight she felt when she exposed him that sunny afternoon after recess – that was truly unforgettable.
Thinking back, bullying had been the only thing she enjoyed about school life.
There were many routes for her to travel as a teenager after graduation from the academy, it was almost a waste that she chose to prance out of the marked paths and create her own in the end.
She could achieve anything she wanted – and for some queer reason, the idea simply did not satisfy her. There was never a challenge, never a moment that made her doubt her abilities, never anything particularly exciting about her life. She sat for courses in prestigious schools and always ended up dropping out halfway because the classes were too boring and demeaning. She skipped most of the lessons just to use her pokémon; most of which were already fully-bred and domestically trained to attack with agile skill, she could hardly play her role as a trainer.
She won impromptu matches with strangers that came in all sorts, brandishing creatures big and small until there was nothing left that could surprise her. Even battling with pokémon proved to be unable to serve its purpose to the woman. There was never that explicit sensation of trepidation or doubt she craved to experience – and never a moment where she slipped into jeopardy, deliberately or not. And it was a shame that she never got to see weak and broken faces once she was let out of the education system.
As much as her life was safely bound by her fate, it was not even remotely close to placating her.
She applied to become a gym leader since Oreburgh gym was currently searching for a capable trainer to fill its vacancy. She had a handsome purugly that she had raised with her own hands and sweat - finally something to be proud of.
She owned all the prerequisites necessary to qualify for the position – surpassed them, even. It might not prove itself to be as entertaining as she would have hoped, but she had nothing else to go for. Everything was too comfortable for her, there was little that required her to utilise her prized potential. Nothing that existed in her sphere of influence could strike her passion – though this was mainly because she didn't know what exactly she was passionate about.
On that day she trudged her way through Mount Coronet with her resume and papers in her arm, she had a discontented scowl on her lips. They had postponed the interview just as she stepped into the city – honestly, she knew people these days were largely selfish and inconsiderate, but to cause her so much trouble for something she wasn't even keen about – she thought they needed to be punished.
"You look unsatisfied about your current life," said a chilling voice out of the blue.
She lifted her head to see a man standing on a throne of rocks above her, looking down at her expectantly.
In that moment, the frown softened with uncertainty. And after a few seconds staring into those depthless eyes, it completely disappeared, replaced by the elusive reddening of her cheeks.
The godly man with the faded blue hair and premature lines crafting his face ordered her to change her image entirely and be born anew in the brave world he was building up. To throw away all her certificates of distinction and her sports medals and golden awards, to start on fresh untainted soil – the action was so risky, it made her pulse quicken and her heart beat at an addicting pace, it made her feel daring and unstoppable.
He told her that until she was fit to be part of the organisation and a member of their cause – with no other ties – he would not let her join the ranks of the enlightened. She did not ask any further questions, only grinning gleefully as she broke her trainer ID into two in front of his audience, just to watch his deep eyes crinkle in the corners with slight impress as the pieces fell through her shaking hands.
He granted her a new name, something dangerous and elegant – something that truly suited her.
She shrugged off her original title and all its burdensome assets. She dyed her hair until it bled crimson and the colour ran thickly down to her roots, marvelling at the result. She placed red contact lenses into her eyes and chopped off a good length of her ponytail with a pair of scissors that were idling on her dresser. She sat back in her swivel chair, holding the metallic uniform up in front of her body to regard herself in the mirror. She saw a smile crack and gradually widen on her face, and her eyes lit up with delighted prospect and waiting expectations – something that tasted like accomplishment hibernating beneath her cherry lips.
This was her, this was what she was built to do – all those years had been wasted on petty people and aimless dreams. To an extent, it was funny how she never realised that this was her calling all along. And she started to laugh in an unbridled way with eyes wide open, her voice high and triumphant, sated heart palpitating wildly in her chest.
Decked awash in the colour of Mars, her only aspiration was to become a Commander.