As I promised RaveOn21now22, here's the middle story for my other fic Could Have Been Me :) It should be a short-ish multichapter thingy majig full of Ikari goodness and family fluff. I make myself feel ill sometimes ¬_¬ Anyway, enjoy.

Disclaimer: I don't own Pokémon, if I did, Dawn and Paul would be together :)

One: Story Time

"Time for bed," Paul told his three children. They looked at him as he stood in the door way like they didn't quite believe it was bed time. The eldest, Lewis, slowly sat up in his bed.

"Daddy," Lewis said.

"What, Lewis?" Paul asked.

"Can you tell us a story?" the boy asked, blinking a few times in a rather cute manner. Paul rolled his eyes. He didn't really like telling stories but no doubt they would land him in trouble with Dawn if he refused.

"Yeah, daddy, a story!" the younger boy cheered. This was Josh, Paul's second eldest child. The brothers looked nothing like brothers. Lewis had blue hair while Josh had purple hair. Lewis had Paul's eyes, while Josh had his mother's eyes.

"Please, daddy," Paul's only daughter pleaded. Amber didn't live up her name at all, not in any way, shape or form, yet Dawn was adamant that she be called Amber. Something about a favourite stone or along those lines. Amber had long blue hair and blue eyes, her mother's double in other words.

Paul let out a long sigh before walking over to Amber's bed. The boys shared a bunk bed at one side of the room while Amber had her own single bed. Paul sat next to Amber and put his feet up. The boys looked at him in anticipation.

"What story do you want to hear?" Paul asked, "Cinderella? Three Blind Rattata? The Three Little Tepigs? Mary and her Mareep? Jack and the Bellsprout?"

"Mummy tells us them," Amber said. Of course she did. Dawn always got the easy way out whenever it came to things like this. Paul looked down at Amber.

"What do you want to hear then?" he asked.

"I want to hear about mummy," Josh said excitedly.

"Yeah, daddy," Lewis agreed, "When did you fall in love with mummy?"

"Did you rescue her?" Amber asked, "Like the princes in mummy's stories?"

"Nah," Josh argued, "Mummy would never get into trouble."

Yeah, that's why Paul called her 'Troublesome'.

"Tell us daddy," Lewis pleaded. The three of them looked at Paul with large puppy dog eyes. Paul stood no chance. He let out a sigh and thought back.

"When did I fall in love with your mother?" Paul asked, "It's weird. I don't know when I fell in love with her."

"But you do, don't you?" Amber asked.

"Of course I do," Paul replied. He put an arm round his little girl as he thought about the question. The two boys watched him as he thought about it. They fidgeted in their beds so they were comfy but so they still could see their father. Paul nodded.

"I guess it all started when Dawn visited Uncle Reggie's house," Paul began "It was the first real conversation we had that we laughed over. She got me so worried about Reggie having kids that I decided that I couldn't let it happen…

"Here's the deal," a teenage Paul told Reggie, "If you tell Maylene you love her before I find a girlfriend, I'll look after your children."

"I don't love Maylene," Reggie snapped, growing redder than a tomato.

"But," Paul went on, ignoring his brother's denial, "If I get a girlfriend before you tell Maylene then I never, ever have to looks after your kids."

"How do I know you haven't already got a girlfriend," Reggie said, "Or what if you get a girlfriend and then dump her in a few days. That wouldn't be fair."

"Fine," Paul said, growing irritated, "If I have a girlfriend for six months and you still haven't told Maylene, I don't look after your kids."

"It's a deal," Reggie agreed. The two brothers shook hands. Paul walked to the door.

"I'm going to train," he stated.

"Be home for dinner," Reggie told him. Paul nodded before he disappeared out of the door.

Paul walked out into the streets of Veilstone. This plan would work perfectly, he knew it would. Reggie would never, ever tell Maylene how he felt and luckily Maylene was as dense as Ash when it came to things like that. On the downside, Paul had to find a girlfriend. For six months. Why couldn't he have said two months or, even better, a month? Stupid brain.

A strong gust of wind almost blew Paul off his feet. He grimaced as dust flew into his eyes. He stopped walking to get the dust out. After a few seconds Paul could see again so he continued on his way. However, there was another strong gust of wind and something white and circular shaped whacked him in the face. He grabbed whatever it was that had attacked him to see it was a white beanie hat with a pink pokéball insignia on it. Paul blinked at it a few times.

"Paul!" Dawn chorused as she ran up to him. She smiled at him. "Thanks for catching my hat."

"I thought I recognised it," Paul said passing it to her, "You still wear that old thing?"

"It's not that old," Dawn argued. Paul shrugged. "You going to train?"

"I was," Paul replied, slipping his hands into his pockets.

"Should have known," Dawn said with a shrug, "Well, I'll not keep you."

She smiled and was about to walk away when she turned back to him.

"Oh, yeah," she said, "Did you make that deal with Reggie?"

"Yeah," Paul said with a sigh, "But I agreed to have a girlfriend for six months."

"Sucks to be you," Dawn commented. She smirked. "Bye then."

She walked off, leaving Paul a little stupefied. Sucks… to be him? Did she just make fun of him? Dawn, of all people, made fun of him? Sucks to be him?

"Why does it suck to be me?" Paul snapped, knowing she was still in hearing range. Dawn stopped and looked at him, a knowing expression on her face.

"It just does," she replied, "For a guy who's as unsociable as you, being tied down for anything longer than a week is going to suck. Therefore, it sucks to be you."

"And you could quite easily have a relationship for six months?" Paul asked.

"That's right," Dawn said with a nod, "Because I'm nice."

"Are you saying I'm not nice?" Paul asked.

"Pretty much," was her reply. She was smiling widely at him. She knew perfectly well that she had hit a nerve, like she had the other night, and was playing him. Paul scowled at her. She shrugged, waved and continued walking on her way.

Paul blinked. Did she just walk away from him? That… That just wasn't right. Paul tried to resist going after her and would have managed it if his legs hadn't had a mind of their own.

"Hey," Paul shouted, catching Dawn's attention. She seemed a little surprised that he had followed her.

"What's wrong?" she asked. She checked her hair and then her dress. "Did a drop something else?"

"No," Paul replied, "Why am I 'not nice'?"

"You called me back to ask me why you're not nice?" she asked, smile returning to her face.

"Yes," Paul snapped.

"Do you have all day?" Dawn asked. Paul tapped his foot. She was making fun of him again, wasn't she? She giggled at him. "I'll send you a list in the post. I have to run. I'm supposed to be meeting Barry at the coffee shop in ten minutes."

She had a date? Why did she have a date? Who in their right mind would want to date her?

"Jealous?" Dawn asked, watching his expression.

"You would like that, would you?" he managed to say.

"I thought so," Dawn said with a wink, "Yes, I am a taken girl, Paul. Sorry. Got to dash. Bye."

She walked off again. Paul rolled his eyes and turned to go back the way he was going. To train, that was the plan of the day. There was another gust of wind. Paul stumbled a bit with the force of it.

"Ow," Dawn cried from behind him. She had fallen over, hadn't she? Paul glanced over his shoulder and sure enough she was lying on the floor. Usually Paul would have walked off, thinking it was just a fall, but Dawn rolled over onto her side and grabbed her ankle. Now that wasn't a good sign.

He walked back to her and looked at her ankle, well boot.

"Troublesome," he told her.

"Meanie," she retorted.

OK, he wasn't expecting a retort. Instead of arguing he slowly began to pull her boot off.

"Hey!" she yelled, but he didn't listen to her. "OW!"

"Stop screaming," he snapped.

"Stop hurting me!" she shouted back. Paul grimaced at the loudness and the shrillness of her voice. Who knew a girl could go that high pitched? Paul ignored her anyway and went back to taking off her boot. She bit down on her lip as he slid it off her foot. The ankle was swollen.

"Looks bad," he told her.

"Really? Because the incredible pain would have told me otherwise?" she snapped at him. Paul couldn't help but smirk at her. She was funny in her own little way. He passed her the boot.

"Put it back on," he said, "You don't want your foot getting cold do you?"

Dawn shook her head and tried to put the boot back on. She grimaced as she did so but managed to slide it back on without too many grunts of pain. Paul turned his back to her.

"Get on," he ordered. Dawn shuffled and grabbed hold of him round the neck. He lifted her up easily and picked her up in a piggy back. She hugged him close. He walked back towards Reggie's house, knowing full well Reggie would know what to do. However, when they reached the door, Paul found a problem. If he knocked, he would drop Dawn. Without saying anything, Dawn kicked the door with her good foot. Reggie rushed to the door and opened it quickly. He looked at the two teens, wondering what was going on.

"She fell over," Paul explained.

"I did not," Dawn yelled, "I was blown over and I twisted my ankle and now it really hurts! Jerk."

Reggie closed the door while chuckling. Paul carried Dawn into the living room and dumped her on the sofa, careful enough so she didn't bang her ankle but careless enough to make it seem like he didn't care. She growled at him, muttering 'jerk' under her breath. Reggie walked into the room holding the first aid kit. Paul walked towards the back door once again.

"Where are you going?" Reggie asked.

"She was meeting someone," Paul stated, "He might want to come and check up on her."

With that he was gone. Dawn looked at a startled Reggie with a nervous smile on her face. Reggie let out a sigh.

"This is going to end badly, isn't it?" he asked.

"Probably," she replied.

Of course, Dawn had only told Paul that she was going to meet Barry and forgot to tell him that Barry was the head of Paul's Fan Club… Need more be said…

"So…" Lewis said, "What happened after that?"

"It's late," Paul told his children, "And your mother will tell me off if I kept you up too late."

"But daaaaaddddiiiieee," the three of them moaned. Paul smirked.

"I'll tell you some more tomorrow," Paul promised. They pulled faces but settled down into bed. Paul kissed Amber's head and walked out of the room.

"Night Lewis, Josh and Amber," he said.

"Night daddy," they replied in a chorus. Paul flicked the light off and closed the door.

"Paul Fan Club…" Paul muttered, "They annoyed me then and they annoy me now. I guess things don't change."

He walked downstairs not thinking any more about the fan club, just in case he had nightmares… again.

So there is Chapter One! Hope it wasn't too bad :) Please review with your thoughts. If you have any requests or ideas then feel free to tell me them and I'll try and include them (I'm fast running out of ideas). Thanks!

RSx