Biking had never felt so good.
Satoshi spread his arms out wide, his blue vest fluttering from the breeze. He had biked before, when he was little and from time to time on his adventures, but never in such a undescribable way as this. Pallet Town had the most magnificent mountains, and taking the trail gleamed a world of blurred trees and enchanting scenery. The leaves rustled and swirled around his bike, an array of auburn and copper from this year's Autumn.
It was so quiet. He could hear the whistling of a train engine from the distance, and the faint screeches of brakes from the other bikers that passed by. Satoshi grabbed the handles hard as he wobbled slightly from lack of balance. The rough rubber around them pressed against his palms, and his thighs brushed the sleek blue mechanism every now and then.
He closed his eyes, the cool air slapping his cheeks. For a moment, he could imagine he was all alone, on an endless path that went on forever and ever.
Unfortunately, a distinct smell of strawberry shampoo told him he was not at all alone
"You're so slow." Kasumi said from behind him, her legs pedalling with adrenaline. She could see his dark hair ruffling in the wind and the tight grip of his black fingerless gloves around the handles. His gears turned constantly, making a despicable squeaking sound. "If this weren't such a thin path, I'd have passed you and finished the whole freaking trail."
Satoshi ran his hand through his hair, his black strands tickling his fingers. "You're supposed to enjoy the view Kasumi. Don't be so competitive all the time."
"I'm not being competitive, but you're crawling at a snail's pace and excuse me for wanting to actually finish this trail before midnight."
"It's only seven-o-clock. There's nothing to worry about." he assured her, wincing as he inhaled the scent of strawberries once again. "...and what kind of shampoo do you use? For god's sake, I can smell it like I'm inside your hair."
Kasumi growled to herself, feeling the bitter taste of him being right in her mouth. "Just shut up and bike."
Satoshi barely nodded, not in the mood to argue with his best friend. He instead eyed the way the trees were so healthy and vivid, and each strand of grass was sparkling, due to the miraculous affects of after-rain and dew. The coloured leaves scattered the ground, some inched onto the pathaway and crunching under his wheels with a satisfying crinkling sound. He could smell the bed of tulips on his left side, each flickering colour melding in different scents.
Dutifully, his brown eyes moved back to the trail. Gravel covered the sides, but smooth pale peach provided an easy surface in the middle. He leaned forward, gaining speed, for himself and for Kasumi who was grumbling under her breath behind him.
"Happy?" he called back, taking a moment to look behind his shoulder. He could see Kasumi's aquamarine eyes flashing with resentment, but a hint of playfulness as well.
"No. You just sped up from snail to turtle." she snorted, her bangs blowing wildly in her face, touching her nose. She heard him chuckle. "...and stop taking this so lightly! Once we're done, I'm going to beat you up 'till you won't know what's black and what's blue."
"Chill out for once." he answered back, wondering if the fragment of strawberries could get any stronger. She really used too much shampoo. "I mean, we're having fun, going on a trail which I so kindly invited you to, and all you can do is comp-" Satoshi's eyes widened as he felt his bike lift off the ground as he ran over a bumpy path. His heart pounded as his bike nearly lost control, wobbling speedily. It soared out of direction, and he veered into the grass.
Pressing on his brakes hard, he barely avoided crashing into a tree.
"What's wrong with you?" Kasumi said. "You can't even ride a bik-"
"Kasumi, be careful!"
Before she could properly comprehend his warning, she felt the the wheels of her bike give away as she encountered the same crack Satoshi had stumbled upon just moments before. She frantically tried to regain control, but the handles slid out of her grip and the bike skidded to the ground, taking her with it.
A sickening crash was heard as she collided onto the pavement, the bike falling hard on top of her.
For a second, Kasumi could feel nothing.
Then, pain. A searing, stinging pain soared through her body, mainly on her right elbow where she had put the most pressure. Bird-Pokemon chirped in the distance and a couple biked past her, oblivious to her misery. She could feel her elbow pounding, her entire body aching. She could feel it so consciously, the inveitable pain, that she wanted to curl up and cry.
She bit her lip hard and hestiantly looked at her elbow. Her face contorted. Blood was dripping down, trickling from the red pool that covered it. She could see dark spots on the ground from where she had hurt herself.
She tasted salt in her mouth, and realized she was crying.
And then Satoshi was there, scrambling over and falling to his knees on the ground next to her. His brown eyes were flashing with panic, his heart hammering against his chest. "Oh god, oh god, oh god." he shuffled forward, gently placing his hands on the bike.
The cool metal surface felt good on his sweaty hands. With a grunt, he lifted it off her and threw it against the grass.
"Sato-Satoshi?" she managed weakly, not bothering to show up a strong front this once.
"Are you okay?" he asked, cringing when he saw the red smeared on her arm. He could smell the blood and it made him feel sick on the inside. His stomach churned and he cursed himself for having a weak stomach at a time like this. He could eat until he was bloated yet he couldn't handle a little gore. Slowly, he crawled over to her and put his hand on the upper part of her arm, between the elbow and the bicep muscle. "You okay?" he repeated.
She sniffed, tears still streaming down her face. Her locks blew wildly around the frame of her face, orange hair tangled and slipping out of its side pony. "I'm...I'm..." her arm stung. "It hurts."
"I know." Satoshi said, clueless on how to respond. He kept his hand on her arm, loving the way her flawless skin soothed his palm. Above them, an airplane whirred and a flock of Pidgey's buzzed by - yet Satoshi was all too focused on the girl in front of him.
He looked at the blood on her elbow and lower arm and creased his brow. "We need to stop the blood flow." he explained, voice laced with calmness as he assessed the situation. "It's not that bad."
"But," Kasumi said in a strangled voice. "It hurts."
Satoshi guiltily stared at the ground. He didn't know why but he felt responsible for the incident that Kasumi just endured and the fact that he could do absolutely nothing to help her feel better brought him down more. "Is it...does it hurt a lot?" he said, his mouth dry.
"Yes." she said in a quiet voice, taking her good hand and wiping a stray tear from her flushed face. She could hear the zooming of bikers swerving around them and the shouts and playful cries of children from the distance. "But...I'll be okay, so long as we stop the blood."
"You sure?" he said hastily.
"Yeah." she said confidently, the evening wind teasing her hair.
With a firm nod, Satoshi removed his hand from Kasumi's arm and slipped off his worn out vest. He could feel the rough, yet somehow soft material in his hands, engraved with burnt marks and particular holes. "Here." he twisted it, gently placing the attire piece around her elbow. His stomach flipped inside of him as his nerves were on fire, but he continued to wrap the vest safely around her bleeding arm.
Kasumi watched the 11-year old boy in admiration, her insides flaring as she observed him so carefully tie the finishing knot with his vest. She could smell the cologne Brock had forced him to wear before the outing, a little too strong because the breeder had no sense of appeal. It had faded, but the fragment still lingered. His hands brushed her arm occasionally and she could feel her cheeks blushing fuschia.
"There." he cleared his throat, pulling his hands back and studying his work of art. "Does that feel better?"
Kasumi tilted her head, examining his concerned expression. Then, she broke into a smile that lit up her entire face. "It feels much better Satoshi. Thank You."
He beamed, his cheeks coloring in modesty. "No problem."
After a moment of comfortable silence, the two friends stood up and fetched their fallen bikes, spirited to get biking again. It took only a moment for them to gather their speed and enjoyment for the activity, and soon, they were soaring and arguing like they always did.
As they biked past the golden leaves and stunning branches, Satoshi couldn't help but confirm.
Biking really had never felt so good.
THERE WE GO! This is dedicated to Auramaster24 for reviewing on almost all my stories! I REALLY APPRECIATE IT! :P
Oh, and TJOL is still GOING, I've just been really out of it lately. The latest chapter has like 1500 words written, but I need 8000 lol per chapter. It'll take awhile, and I apologize if the wait is rather monsterously huge. It'll probably be like a chapter a month LOL. OR MORE time.
AND, I tried using their Japanese names and it was fun, although I'll usually stick with Ash and Misty.
Anyways, thanks for reading! :P HAPPY WRITING!