Several weeks later…

Dear Misty,

I was very pleased to receive your postcard. I'm glad your enjoying the rest of the cruise and that it doesn't end too soon: it sounds like your having a lot of fun and having to go back to Cerulean would surely spoil it!

I only just arrived back from Lily of the Valley Island a few days ago. The trip wasn't that exciting, but it was long enough to allow me to think. I heard people talking about another region called Tissue or something like that, and I just know Ash is going to go there. They don't have Pokemon Contests over there according to one woman, only a thing called Pokemon Musicals. And you know what: I'm not changing my career or voyaging away to this far away region just for Ash!

But, before you think it, I didn't choose Paul either.

As I stood on the port near TwinleafTown only a short time ago, waving goodbye to Ash and Brock, I thought about how I would miss their friendship, their loyalty, their companionship. But before Ash and Paul's battle I realised something: they are like their trainer selves in real life. Paul is reclusive and moody and only likes things going his way, while Ash can be a bit too extreme, over the top and decides things too quickly. I don't want to commit myself to either of them at the moment: both of them need to grow up and gain some more social experience before I could possibly consider them again. Their battle was very intense, yet I don't think either of them could have ever matched the emotions I felt.

I decided to take a leaf out of your book: I'm not going to bother with love for the time being. It may seem hard to believe I'm giving up on love, but I have a good eight or so years to find love! I don't have that long to be a professional coordinator, and that's what's on my mind right now. I think I might head back to HearthomeCity and visit Paris. She is a Pokemon Stylist (she designs clothes for Pokemon) and is one of my idols that I thankfully got to meet one day in Hearthome. I want to go back and see her and experience some more coordinator things.

Before I turn this letter into an essay, I just want to say thank you. I realise that our relationship started off rather iffy, but I'm so glad we were able to sort things out before we left. You are right: men can't stand in our way at this age and they certainly can't ruin our lives! I've learnt that lesson now, and I plan to stick to my values over the years to come.

Good luck when you get back to Cerulean (you better train hard, I want another battle when we meet again!), and good luck with NOT finding love!

Yours sincerely,


P.S. While we're on the subject of love, I know one person who needs our help…. Brock! I don't know if you had to put up with his obsessions, but don't get me started on them…

Dawn felt a tear welling up as she finished writing the letter, and she had to drop the pen in order to brush it away. It hadn't been that long since she had bade farewell to Ash and Brock, watching them sailing away back to Kanto. The emotions of suddenly being alone again were hurting both her and Piplup, and the memories of her feelings for Ash were still raw. This letter barely scraped the surface of how she was still feeling and thinking: her future, love, Ash, Paul, Misty…. There were so many things she was thinking about, and it was hard for her to concentrate.

"Piplup Pip?" Piplup leapt up onto the dining table, staring curiously at Dawn. The young coordinator hadn't cried in weeks, but now emotions for flooding back to her.

"I'm fine, I'm fine, it's just hard to remember these sorts of things, you know?" She replied, and Piplup nodded, the loss of most of his friends still with him. There were shouts from outside, and the two watched as Togekiss gave Cyndaquil, Buneary and Pachirisu rides on her back, with Mamoswine watching from beneath a tree. Dawn felt happier watching them: they were all doing so well and were happy as they waited for Dawn to decide what to do. They needed to evolve or gain more experience, and Dawn knew that she couldn't stay in TwinleafTown forever worrying about the past.

"Come on Piplup," Dawn said suddenly, folding the letter up and putting it into a previously addressed envelope. "It's time we put the past behind us!" Piplup smiled widely as he jumped onto her shoulder. Dawn beamed back and headed out the door towards the nearby post box, a sense of confidence and relief in her step. As soon as she posted the letter, she would be done with the past for now: done with Ash, done with Paul, done with worrying about things for ages.

And, for the time being, she would be done with love.

So, here we go, the final of the trilogy. I hope you have all enjoyed reading A Lover's Tiff, A Sunken Ship and A Conference Affair. I'm sorry if the story didn't end quite the way some of you may have wanted, but I think it was best to show some maturity in Dawn and to give things a conclusion that ties in with the canon. I may write shipping stories again in the future, but for now I will be sticking with my journey-based stories. If you want more of these or just have something to say, please feel free to review any of the three stories in the trilogy, and thanks for making these stories some of my most successful ones to date :D