AN: Hey, thanks for clicking! This is my first fic in the pokemon fandom, and set in an original region and starring my OC Ian. Darker themes ahead. Warning for minor blood and gore, and some strong language in future chapters. My wonderful beta-reader is FirebirdXoX who has some good fics of her own! I hope you enjoy!

Blue eyes stared up blankly at the ceiling, the teenager attached to them laying calmly on his bed with hands folded and ears alert. Already dressed in a gray and white striped sweater, collared shirt, and black jeans, there wasn't really any reason for him to be laying around doing nothing in his room. He was waiting.

Somewhere from downstairs there was the muffled sound of a door closing and then a few seconds later, a car's engine. He sat up straight. After a few long moments of silence, he scrambled off the bed and reached beneath it.

Ian knew this was something he couldn't come back from. He had never disobeyed his parents before, at least not to this extent. Despite having heard both of them leave, he still opened his bedroom door and listened for several seconds, confirming that he heard no sound of either his mother or father downstairs. He didn't want to sneak around and make the final step away while they were in the house. Somehow that was crueler, and Ian wanted to spare them the guilt of having him slip out while he was right under their noses. They had enough guilt when it came to him already.

Ian dragged out the hiking backpack from beneath the bed. He trailed his hands over each strap, each buckle, and each zipper carefully: mapping them. Inside was the money he had saved, the pokeballs he had paid for classmates to smuggle to him. It was everything he could ever need on his journey.

Save for a partner.

But you needed a trainer's license to get a pokemon if you were under age, and you needed a parent's signature for that. Pet pokemon were weak and extremely expensive, it would've taken Ian another year to gather enough money for that. He just couldn't wait that long, not when he was so close.

Ian opened each pocket, and methodically checked each and every item, making sure to touch and hold each one and place it back securely. His inspection done he closed everything back up and slipped it onto his back. He half expected for his currently absent parents to come out of nowhere and call out for him to stop, but he was uninterrupted as he ran down the stairs and then picked his way carefully to the front door.

He paused just long enough to grab the device hanging by the door, a series of plastic tubes all connected by an elastic band and folded neatly together. With a flick of Ian's wrist the plastic locked together firmly, into it's full tapered shape. He would need his cane if he was going to really do this. He couldn't memorize the entire world like he had the inside of his house now could he?

After all, he was blind...

Ian smiled softly as he stepped into the sun, the light blotchy scarring around his eyes crinkling and making him seem older than just his fifteen years.

"Going for a walk Ian?" the cheerful voice of his neighbor Maggie startled him and snapped him out of his thoughts. Her spastic little growlithe yapped angrily at him, and Ian smiled at the woman, brushing the dark black bangs that hung nearly in his eyes away for a moment. The rest of his hair was quite short and neat, his clothes equally so. Ian was sure he did not look like he was about to run away from home.

"You could say that, yes…" Ian said, remaining calm despite the jitters in his stomach.

"Did you hear they opened the road in the grassland back up to trainers? The pokerus outbreak has died down enough, should be getting more people around town again now that trainers can travel!' Maggie said cheerfully, nodding her head, perky brown bun bobbing.

"Yes, your store will be getting more business again. Congratulations," Ian said, ever polite. He could feel his fingers twitch around his cane. He heard no suspicion or accusation in Maggie's voice, but Ian was acutely aware of his shortcomings in reading people.

"Well thank you! I gotta be going now before Skip gets antsy," Maggie said, her growlithe pulling impatiently at his leash. She began striding away, as Ian spoke.

"All right, see you later. Tell my parents I love them…"

Maggie paused, brows furrowing a moment as she looked back at the blind boy, standing calmly on his porch, pack on his back, and calm like the wind before a storm.

"Okay… I will. You be careful now," she said uncertainly.

Ian nodded, "I will." With that Ian stepped onto the sidewalk, cane swishing side to side along the ground. The edge of the grasslands were just a half hour walk towards the border of Dehiscent Town; and if Ian kept a brisk pace, he could reach them even sooner.