Chapter 1

N stared at me in utter shock. His mouth was gaping and his eyes were incredulously wide. His mouth moved as if he was murmuring something, but it was so quiet that I think he was couldn't even hear it. I bit back the uneasiness and recalled my Zebstrika, whispering a thank you to him as he went back into the ball to rest.

Ghetsis started to yell angrily, screaming profanities at me. I just stood there and stared at him, my chin held up defiantly. No matter how hard I tried, I couldn't sum up an ounce of happiness or victory. Not like this. Not with N standing a ways behind his father, his face perfectly expressionless. But that's not what killed me inside, it was his eyes. They were dead.

"He's nothing more than a freak without a human heart! Do you think you're going to get through to a warped person like that?" Ghetsis roared while he struggled with Alder and Cheren.

N bowed his head. Alder and Cheren had managed to get Ghetsis out of control and were pushing him out of the room. As he passed, Alder caught my eye and gave me a look. "Go easy on him."

I smiled warmly at him, "You don't have to tell me that, Alder." I murmured. I touched my hand to his shoulder. "Thank you so much. For everything." I blinked back tears.

The Champion smiled at me for a brief second and carried on out of the room. The former sage of Team Plasma was forced out of the room, but I could still hear his screaming from the other side of the door.

"He's not even human! He knows nothing but stupid Pokémon!" My eyes flickered to N to gauge his reaction. His mouth twitched, but nothing more.

I didn't know what to do, so I continued to stand there. I stroked Zebstrika's poke ball, which was still resting in my hand. I crossed my feet and looked at the ground; although I let my eyes wander over to N occasionally.

Then I heard his light footsteps coming towards me. I shoved the poke ball in my bag and I began to fidget. He stopped once he was about a foot in front of me and offered me his hand. I looked up at him with wide eyes. His eyes glinted and a small, sad mile touched his lips. He wants me to take his hand?

I placed my hand in his palm and he sighed. His fingers encircled around my hand and he led me towards the remains of the wall that Zekrom destroyed. He stopped for a few moments and turned toward me. He opened his mouth, but immediately closed it. Blushing a faint red, he turned away from me and jerked my hand more urgently. I felt like he was trying to release my hand nonchalantly, but I held on stubbornly. After a few moments of dragging me towards the wall, we stopped a few feet from the gaping hole. A cool wind blew in and I shivered.

He looked out wistfully, and the look on his face frightened me. He untangled my hand in his and took a step towards the edge. No, N! My heart stopped, and I frantically grabbed his sleeve and pulled him back. He flew back and crashed into me, causing us both to fall to the ground. My back hit the floor and I let out a squeak. N landed on top of me and I groaned. My eyes shot open and his face was inches from mine, leaning in. I flashed with embarrassment and I shoved myself up. "I'm so sorry!" I said in a panic. I grabbed his hand and pulled him to his feet. "I thought you were going to…" I trailed off, too embarrassed to say anymore.

N rubbed his neck nervously. He froze and looked at me, his eyes shocked. "You thought I was going to kill myself?" He whispered.

I looked up at him and bit my lip. I took in a breath to say something but no words came out. I looked down again, hoping desperately my tears wouldn't spill. I nodded.

He was silent for a few moments. My cap fell over my eyes, and I breathed a silent sigh of relief. An old habit came into play. If I can't see him he can't see me.

Then I felt him pulling me towards his chest. He hugged me tightly as I stood frozen, my stomach doing little flips.

His lip tickled my ear, "Listen." He murmured. "I have to leave. I need to find myself, to find what I've been missing my whole life." He said, taking me completely off guard. Before I could even say anything, he held me tighter and whispered, "I'm so sorry, Touko. But I have to do this."

I burst into tears. "N…" I cried, digging my face into his neck. I continued to repeat his name, my voice breaking. He continued to hug me as I cried, his eyes mournful. "Please, N, I'll miss you too much."

"I know, I know." He cooed, a tear dripping from his eye. "I'll miss you, too. I need to do this, it's the only way I can be happy. I know this will be hard for you," he took in a breath and pressed his lips to my forehead. "But you have to let me go."

I broke down into full hysterics now. My knees buckled and I sunk to the ground. N kept his arms around me and I cried loudly into his chest. I felt ridiculous, but I didn't even care. N's leaving. I thought frantically to myself. What if I never see him again?

He unwound his arms and stood up. He pulled out a poke ball and threw it outside. Zekrom emerged and floated before us, waiting patiently. I stayed on my knees and held my face in my hands.

"I understand." I whispered, my eyes intent on the ground.

N crouched down on his knee and put his finger under my chin. He lifted my face to his and he smiled. "I knew you would. You're the strongest person I know."

I stared at him and laughed breathlessly, "Me?" I said incredulously. "No, I'm not strong at all. You are the strong one, N. After all you've been through; you are still pushing forward to find yourself." My eyebrows knitted together. "That's why I-"I stopped myself, my eyes flickering away from his quickly.

His eyes widened for a moment. He touched his index finger to his lip and smiled. "Touko, you're the only true friend I've ever had. Don't worry, I'll be back." He grabbed my hands and pulled me up. He hugged me for a brief moment and let go to walk up to Zekrom. Without thinking, I grabbed his hand.

"I'll be waiting for you forever, N." I said, my eyes pleading. "You're the greatest friend ever. I'll always be here."

N gave me a thankful glance and continued to walk towards Zekrom. I saw a tear roll down his cheek at our hands parted. He climbed onto the black dragon and said something to it. Zekrom growled and his tail started to glow.

"I'm so proud of you, N." I said, louder this time so he could hear me.

He smiled at me, a full blown smile. I've never seen him smile that way before. He was truly happy. Then why am I so miserable? I thought to myself.

"I'll come back for you, Touko. I promise." Then Zekrom roared and sped off, its tail shooting off sparks of electricity in its wake.

My eyes opened slowly. The sun was shining in through the window and I turned over, irritated. I felt the usual uncomfortable pillow and lifted my face. My pillow was all wet again. I always told my mother that it was because I was an excessive drooler, but in reality it was because I cried every night. Whether it was crying myself to sleep, or crying in my dreams, it happened without fail.

I pelted the pillow against my wall and pushed myself out of bed. I walked over to my desk and grabbed a pen. Placing the cap in my mouth, I turned to look at my calendar and placed a giant black X on yesterday's date.

"Another day alone." I mused quietly to myself. I put the pen back on the desk and looked around my room. It's been three years since I started my Pokémon journey, five hundred and ninety days since I ended it, and six hundred and twenty three days since N has been gone.

Start day Six hundred and twenty four.