Disclaimer: I don't own Pokemon.

Summary: Steven rings in the new year in a very different way - after all, it does involves Flannery, the object of his admiration. StevenFlannery, oneshot

Mmkay! Seems I haven't written a oneshot for Pokemon in so long. So I decided to write a piece for these two. Because I love them. There isn't really much else for me to say except that I hope y'all enjoy this and I would love to hear what everyone thinks! Thanks for reading!

Burning New

She sneaks up on him.

He isn't sure how it happens at all. One moment he's normal, isolated, cut-off Steven Stone, and the next he's...enraptured.

This fiery girl with the fiery heart and the fiery smile - and he can think of nothing else but her. It is bad enough when he is alone, but it is damn near unbearable when she is actually in his vicinity.

Like now.

Steven leans against the wall, surveying the place. Once a year, the Hoenn Gym Leaders and Elite Four alike gather together for a banquet type thing to celebrate the new year, and that is where he finds himself tonight.

The glass is cold in his fingers, full with some kind of beverage he doesn't care for - shouldn't be surprising since Wallace threw this party, and he and the water trainer have very different tastes.

He throws back a bit of the drink, looking toward Wallace and his Winona who are in quiet, intimate conversation as the liquid burns its way down his throat.

Different tastes indeed.

While Winona does look lovely in her dress of airy blue silk, and Roxanne looks devilish in a short black number, all his attention is focused on the radiant red-haired trainer in the corner opposite him.

Her bright hair contrasts her pure white dress, strangely girlish for her, but it brings out that air of innocence that always floats around her. Flannery rubs her hands slightly together, large eyes gazing about. She looks adorably, fascinatingly anxious.

She's all by herself, Wattson having just said goodbye to her to speak with Norman. Steven stares at her, watching as she bites down on her bottom lip and her hands suddenly move about her waist, almost as if searching for her Pokeballs. She looks slightly panicked for a moment before she spots her small, golden clutch purse on the table nearest her. He watches as she darts forward, seizes the purse, and shoves her hand in, rummaging about. He sees the tell-tale red-and-white of the Pokeballs, and feels a smirk cross his face, feels his eyes soften at the sight.

After finding her Pokemon, she lets out a sigh, her cheeks burning in silent humiliation. Steven lets out a quiet chuckle. She leans against the wall and tilts her head to stare at the high ceiling. The light glints off of a golden clip somewhere in her hair - he can't take his eyes off of her.

And then she notices him.

Catches him in the act, like a kid caught stealing cookies before supper.

A bright grin spreads across her face, and she waves rather childishly in his direction. He feels his heart skip several beats before thudding back to life.

Somehow, he finds himself pushing off the wall and striding towards her. He doesn't know if he's been possessed, but it certainly feels like it. She looks slightly shocked as he approaches, gliding like a purposeful ghost near her.

He notices the splashes of red on her cheeks and smiles gently.

"Flannery," he greets, loving how her name rolls and tumbles over his lips.

"Ah, h-hello," she smiles back - Stunning, he thinks in response.

"Are you having fun here?"

"Oh," Flannery starts, her eyebrows knitting together as if searching for words. "Eh, parties aren't really my thing."

Feeling bold, Steven replies, "But they suit you."

Her cheeks turn a deeper shade of red and this time she grins not-so-demurely, fire in her eyes, teeth bared almost as if in a challenge, "Oh, what a line."

There's his girl.

However, she does look flattered at his comment, which he notes.

"It's still lasting as long as usual?" Flannery asks, looking away from him for just a moment before her eyes are drawn back to his handsome face.

"Till midnight."

Flannery nods her reply and gazes over to Wallace and Winona, Brawly and Roxanne.

"Expect to get out a hose for the happy couples." Flannery kids, laughing as rough and unfettered as the fire she controls.

"I'd rather not have angry Pokemon sent on me, my dear."

"Psh, Pokemon?" she scoffs. "The couples themselves would tear your pretty face right off!"

There's a pause in which Steven can't stop himself from grinning.

"Pretty face, huh?"

"I said that out loud, didn't I?"

"Yes," he replies, "yes, you did."

Her lips twitch in something equating a smile, though her cheeks remain flushed, "Oops."

Steven smiles back as enthusiastic chants begin around him. Members of Hoenn's Elite Four start the chant, while everyone else joins in.


Flannery looks put-out.


Steven grins at her toothily, a plan solidifying itself in his head.


Confusion crosses her face, she quirks a brow.


He steps closer to her, placing his hands gently on her shoulders. She looks nervous but doesn't pull away.


And finally - finally - Steven presses his lips against hers.

"Happy New Year!"

Flannery doesn't pull away, only folds herself even tighter into his embrace. He threads a hand into her soft hair, kisses her even more deeply as he does so.

He ignores the various gasps of surprise and wolf-whistles that erupt around them, focuses only on the lovely woman in his arms. The fire that he associates with her seems to lick through him, and he presses his lips softly once, twice, to her own.

Steven parts from her, staring at her greatly flustered appearance, and he brushes a thumb over a prominent cheekbone. Her lips, slightly swollen from kissing, quirk into a shy smile.

Happy New Year, indeed.