I'm really sorry for the late update! I was really busy and fanfiction doesn't seem to allow me to log in yesterday. Hopefully, you guys will enjoy this chapter as well and I'm really thankful for the support given!

Creative Writer 2000: Thank you! I really have to try getting Red's dialogues a minimum while putting his thoughts and feelings into a non-dialogue paragraphs since he's really a hard to read. xD

EmeraldHeart12: Huh? The fourth wasn't the last chapter. xD This story is going to go for a long way.

The Doomsday Architect: LOL! That scene is kind of disturbing though considering that it IS Red xD Don't worry, I wont make him sing. Haha!

Roith and Lorette: Thank you so much! I'm glad that you liked how I portrayed Red since he is really a difficult character to write. Although his character is really captivating at the same time.

nekojen9: That's why Red is such a difficult character to write. xD

KTDLover: Like how when they patrol at night then ends up challenging an innocent trainer because they thought that people who walks around at night are suspicious? YEAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH... And thank you so much! I will keep my best to keep their personalities in check.

PsychicSkitty: Thank you! ^^

I DO NOT OWN POKEMON


A few weeks later, Gold was finally deemed ready to be discharged from the hospital. Neither of them liked the place. It was too white and it reeks of medicine, something that Gold had to live with ever since he was brought to Purge. Red knew it, he had been there before anyway, and would take Gold out of the room silently every chance he got. The doctors were strict in having their patient to rest in bed. Although that was true, Red was preventing Gold from staying in the place whereby he was tortured into this state.

During the time, Gold would sometimes go into a rampage. He would kick and scream at anyone around him. Luckily for the fact that Red was stronger, he was able to pin the boy down with ease although he was hoping he hadn't hurt Gold in the process. There were also times when Gold would successfully land his hits on Red but the older boy didn't complain at all and took it until he was able to find an opening to stop him. Or at least, gave the doctors enough time to put Gold to sleep.

After his rampage, Gold wouldn't have any recollections of it. Which was good since Red didn't want him to feel any more guilty than he should but became difficult when Gold asked about his injuries. It was thankful that Red had always been 'mute' and Gold quickly dropped it when he didn't answer.

Green and Silver made their visits as well. They had been there at some times when Gold rampaged and help to subdue him. Although they felt that they weren't helping much, one thing was that Gold would always hide behind Green whenever he woke up thinking that Red was Purge again. Red didn't like it at all but couldn't find himself blaming Gold. It wasn't his fault that he resembles a little bit like his own father.

To Gold's relief, they were finally at his apartment again. As stated, he hated the hospital now. Although the place first seemed foreign when he stepped it, the sense of familiarity and home soon overtook him. He was quick to head to his bedroom while Red left the bags on the couch, reminding himself to pack later on. If Gold never had the habit of tidying things before, the chances of him doing it now was absolutely zero. For now, Red had to find something for Gold to eat.

"Chu…" Pikachu whined when it took a sniff of the refrigerator, only to be greeted by a scent of rottenness.

Looks like cooking was out of option then.

Going for the next alternative, Red took out his PokeGear and left a message for Green to pick up some food for them. Red wasn't the kind to go for groceries shopping but he would have to deal with it tomorrow. Usually, it was Gold who did it but Red reckoned that the fragile boy could do chores for now.

Speaking of Gold, Red wondered how was he doing now.

He followed the direction Gold was headed to, his room, and opened the door to find the boy deep lost in thought. Gold was sitting on his bed and looking down at his feet. The unusual silence of the normally hyperactive Champion was really worrying. Red was not used to it. Even though they say thinking quietly was good for the soul, Red knew that it was serious trouble when Gold started to pick up on that.

Walking over to the bed, he settled down onto the edge and successfully shook the wondering boy back.

"Oh Red," Gold spoke too soft for Red's liking. "Um… do you need anything?"

Red shook his head.

"Are you going back to Mountain Silver again?"

Frowning this time, Red shook his head again.

"You should," Gold suggested before flinching at the gaze. "I-it's not like I don't want you here or anything. I-It's just that I don't want to be a way of your training. You know… since you're still considered very strong, you would want to train more, right?"

Red looked away with the same frown plastered on his face. Usually, Gold would be dragging Red from Mountain Silver and blabbered about how he shouldn't risk his life up on that crazy place. And right now everything seemed reversed. It was as though Gold didn't want him to be around. Even in the hospital before, Gold tried not to interact with him. Even though Gold did start some conversations after feeling guilty, Red could still feel that Gold didn't want to talk to him while he conversed fine with Green or Silver.

It hurts but Red was good at not showing his feelings.

When Gold started to regret what he said, his eyes shifted around nervously while having a look of unease on his face. This didn't go unnoticed by Red, of course, and it prompted the ex-champion to take Gold's hand. It resulted a flinch from the boy and quickly retracted his own hand but soon found his hand covered by Red's again. This time, Gold was unable to pull back while Red had gotten closer and staring at him. The look in his eyes was urging Gold to tell him whatever was bottled up. Something that Gold didn't like to do right now. It was unnerving and it scared him how Red had this kind of effect on him. It was the same as Purge.

"R-Red…" Gold murmured, half calling out to the boy and half convincing himself that it wasn't the man whom he feared.

Red remained silent as his grip grew tighter.

"R-Red, you're hurting me," Gold pointed out while trying to get his hand free.

If anything, his grip grew tighter. The way those intense red eyes bore into Gold's own ones was starting to scare him.

"S-Stop!"

It was then when the doorbell rang, Red realized what he was doing and immediately retracted his hand. He watched as Gold quickly pulled his own hand against his chest and rubbing on the spot whereby Red had gripped onto. He didn't realize he was being too forceful and had hurt Gold in the process. It was weird. It was never Red's nature to be this… rough. He was never like that. His mom always said he was either gentle or firm.

At least ever since some time after the first time he was challenged by Gold.

As much as Red would like to deny it, he has his father's thirst for battle trait. Ever since he started his journey, he had this desire to grow stronger and stronger. The strongest of all. He didn't care for anything that had gotten in his way. Not even the arrogant Green at that time or Team Rocket. He would defeat anyone that challenged him or got in his way and had never lost to any one of them. He even managed to beat the Elite Four in a row in a single try.

After that, he went to Mountain Silver after collecting all sixteen badges to become even stronger. Although he was recognized as the Champion of two regions, he felt that it wasn't enough. And it was impossible to stop that urge to train more. Any challengers who managed to make it to the summit were mercilessly defeated by his overpowering Pokemon.

Until Gold came by.

Gold didn't beat him in his first try. Not the second nor the third.

But what had intrigued him was how persistent this boy was. He came back up to the summit every week with his growing team. He wouldn't stop challenging him until he had successfully defeated Red even if it was only by a silver lining. And even after that, he still came back up to see him. At first Red thought that he wanted another challenge but he didn't expect Gold to start talking to him and brought him to his apartment.

Because most of the trainers sneered and left him after they were defeated.

"HEY RED! ARE YOU THERE OR NOT?" Green's loud voice bellowed and successfully snapped them out of their daze.

Red quickly got off the bed silently and headed out of the room to greet their guests, leaving Gold on the bed. Gold looked down as his hands clenched tightly on the blanket. Why couldn't he just calm the hell down? Why was he suddenly getting so frightened of Red? He shouldn't be frightened. He liked Red. He was nothing like… him. Red was much more kinder and gentle than that bastard could ever be. So why was he…

And then the tears Gold had been holding back ever since he woke up started to make their way down his cheeks.


It was lucky Green stopped knocking once he heard the doorknob open or else he would've smacked his fist right across Red's face. He would've been quite happy with the result though but Red probably wouldn't. And Silver would just watch in amusement when Red punches Green back. But sadly or luckily, it never happened so they just made their way into the kitchen with food in their hands. Aren't they just the best of friends ever?

"We got you some grubs since you would be too lazy to get your ass off the house to do it," Green supplied and placed the bags on the table.

Yes, best friends forever.

"We bought fried noodles. Get Gold down now," Silver ordered as he took out the packaging.

Best friends… indeed.

Upon Red's lack of movement, Green looked over his best friend in curiousity. The guy was looking down on the floor with a solemn look on his face (Not that it was any different from his usual expression but Green could tell). And what came instantly into Green's mind was that shit must have happened and it was Red's fault. One, Gold could insult people with his lack of thinking but he was obviously in no condition to do that. Two, Red IS acting like the one who caused it.

"What did you do again?" Green asked with an impatient sigh.

Red looked up at him with his blank face.

"Look, if you don't tell me what's wrong. How am I supposed to help? I'm not psychic," Green pointed out with a hint of irony.

Still no response.

"Whatever," Green finally said after a few seconds of silence and rolled his eyes. "You will still have to go up and get Gold. You're not the best person to ask to do anything that doesn't involves battling or training. Just get him down then we will discuss this. Get going," Green commanded.

Why must Red listen to him anyway?

Right, because they are best friends. And the look Silver was giving him wasn't exactly giving him an option to choose. It was a two on one situation that didn't involve Pokemon battles. Reluctantly, Red made his way up to the bedroom. All he had to do was to say 'Dinner' and Gold would be marching down the stairs with him.

Sadly, life wasn't this easy.


Red opened the door to the room and stepped in. On the bed, he could see Gold still sitting on that very same spot with his head bowed. It made Red want to get back down to the kitchen even more after knowing that he was the cause of Gold's hurt. What were Green and Silver thinking? Gold probably wouldn't want to see him again after how harsh he acted towards the fragile boy. He would be frightening the wits out of the poor boy just with his presence.

Walking to the bed slowly, he stopped beside Gold and was now able to hear the soft sobbing noise.

What?

Red tilted Gold's chin up with his index finger, effectively making the smaller boy jump at the sudden movement. He observed the tear stained cheeks and widened red swollen eyes with guilt tugging onto him in his chest. Had he made Gold cry? Sure, there was always the possibility of Gold becoming more emotional due to the scars he had gotten. But it was the first time Red had seen Gold cried. Partly it was because Gold had always tried to put up a cheerful front with him.

After some time of silence, Red moved in to place his lips on the tip of Gold's nose and pulled the other in by wrapping his arms around Gold's shoulder. The smaller boy's eyes widened in surprise at the action while a huge blush spread across his face. This was his crush, for god's sake.

"I'm sorry…" Red apologized.

"R-Red…" Gold stuttered and glanced up at him, locking gazes with the other's red eyes. "I…" Gold murmured and moved his hands up to his shirt and grasped onto it and leaned a little bit closer against his chest.

"Did I scare you?"

Gold shook his head and looked at him with honest eyes. "N-No… I'm just afraid that I made you upset," he admitted.

"I wasn't upset," Red pointed out quietly. "It was my fault for being too…" Red fumbled in his mind with word that he could use for his behavior, "…harsh."

"You weren't," Gold reassured while letting out a sigh of relief.

At least the both of them had resolved their internal issue now. Gold was afraid that he had made Red upset or mad and would cause the other to avoid him. Or worse, didn't want him to be in his presence. It immediately reminded him of what Purge had said to him. That Red had never wanted Gold to be around because he was too annoying and constantly poking into his business whereby he shouldn't stick his nose into. The lies that were fed to his brain had caused him to become more conscious of Red's feelings.

Red didn't want Gold to leave. Even though how much he showed it through his actions, he secretly didn't want his time with the smaller boy to end. Unknown to Gold himself, he had helped him become free of the monster he had been. A monster that lived in the shadows of his impudent father. He was what caused the trainers to scorn at him with a hateful look after each merciless battle. That caused him to never want to step foot on the place of civilization where he really belonged.

The both of them needed each other. Like how Gold needed Red to protect him and likewise, how Red needed Gold to make sure he wouldn't stray off again.

Slurp.

The both boys quickly turned their heads to the sound of slurping noise to find Green and Silver leaning against the frames of the door, looking very amused while eating their noodles. It was as though they were watching a movie film and Silver was starting to get sick. Green gave them a smug grin while giving Red a thumbs up for his so-called achievement. For what exactly? Only Red knows and he didn't like the implication Green, of all people, was giving.

Because the pillow was flung and collided to Green's head really hurt.


I can feel some romance budding now~ Although it wont be that quick till they kiss (Or maybe not. Hohoho) Please review!