Someday I will show the world
Disclaimer: I own nothing
Song: Someday i will show the world- Secret of Nimph 2
Sammy Ketchum held tightly to his grandmother's hand as she led him through the thickening crowd. There were hundreds, maybe even thousands of people milling around in the midsummer night, going from stall to stall and talking in hushed excitement. Sammy's small heart thrummed at the festival feel of the air, and tugged at his grandmother's hand excitedly as they passed several balloons.
"Grams, can I have one?"
Delia saw what caught the small boy's eye and smiled.
"Sure sweetie. Red or blue?"
"Red of course!"
The woman's smile wavered for a moment before solidifying into something that could be considered real.
"Red it is."
The boy squealed in happiness, holding the string tightly as he watched the balloon bob and weave in the wind.
"That's an Arcanine; evolved form of Growlith. It's a fire type," said the little boy proudly, spotting one in the crowd.
"Hey Gary, I want the red one!"
"Fine, I wanted blue anyway. Hey Ashy-boy, did you know Slowpokes use their pink colouring to camouflage amongst coral? You didn't? Ha, you'll never become a Pokémon Master being this dense!"
"Hurry Sammy, we're going to be late."
They reached the centre square of Pallet town, packed with more people than little Sammy could count, but once Delia was recognised they parted in a sea of awed faces. Sammy noticed the many glances sent his way and hid his face. He didn't like when people stared at him. At last the two reached the middle of the mass, the object that had people gathering every year to that spot, growing more and more numerous as the seasons went on. Sammy's great grandfather appeared from the crowd and swung him up so that he was resting on the old man's shoulders. He heard people 'oh' and 'ah', but was more focused on what was in front of him. A statue, made of pure gold, stood for all to see. It was of a young man in a fighting stance with a face filled with determination, a Pikachu on his shoulder. The man's eyes stared off to the distance, at what Sammy couldn't see, but he could read the inscription, the same thing he read whenever he went into the town's square.
Ash Ketchum: Greatest Pokémon Master and Hero the world has ever known.
His grandmother had had to help him understand the words the first few times he had seen them, but now he knew them by heart. The sun dropped below the horizon, and Sammy watched the last glint of light leave the statue of his mother.
"Attention!" called a man at the stage that had been set up nearby. Seated were many people Sammy did not recognise, but he spotted out the familiar faces of his Aunt Misty, Uncle Brock and Aunt May. Their expressions were grim and humourless, adding a serious air about them.
"Today we gather to commemorate Ash Ketchum Day; the day when the greatest Pokémon master that ever lived started his journey. I met him myself when I was just a boy and, like everyone else, believed his battling methods were a mixture of dumb luck and over reliance on powerful Pokémon. Now we know however the brilliant statistic and original thinker he was, coming up with a brand new method of Pokémon training that hasn't been seen before or since. Ash relied on his loyalty, his ability to accept others flaws, and his desire to help all those who needed it. With me here I have several people who knew the man, and what they experienced with him."
A woman with a strange flute told a story about Pokémon called 'Lugia', and Ash's part in saving the world. A man told the crowd how Ash had helped give him strength to become a trainer when no one else believed in him. Aunt May spoke of how she was afraid of Pokémon when she was young, but that Ash helped her believe in herself, and them.
Sammy listened with wide eyes as he heard story after story of his mother's greatness, of how he was a hero. His family never talked much about him. It made them sad.
When the speeches were over, people began to light paper lanterns in respect for the boy they had all come to remember, watching them rise as Ash Ketchum had, rise until they touched the sky. Sammy loosens the tie of the balloon to his small wrist, and then released it into the darkening sky. It glowed in the light of the lanterns, like the sunset glowing on the golden statue, and Sammy suddenly felt a sense of lost so profound his throat tightened as tears threatened to fall. Sammy, for the first time, truly felt the loss of his mother.
Delia and Professor Oak began to walk be the way they had come, and Sammy heard the whispers as they walked by.
"That's him! That's Ash Ketchum's son!"
"By Mew, he looks just like him!"
"Do you think he will be a trainer too?"
"Do you think he will be the next Pokémon Master?"
"Will he take after his mother or father?"
"I'll bet Sammy will be every bit as great as both his parents, now please move!" snapped the Professor. The crowd back away, but Sammy turned, getting on last of his mother's face.
I'll never be you
Never live up to the deeds that you did
Why don't I have you?
To show me the way
You're everyone's hero, I'm only a kid.
Delia walked through the shop with Sammy holding her hand.
"Oh wow!" she heard.
"Grandma, can I have this?"
She turned to see the small boy clutching a pokeball in awe.
Mom, can I have this?
"I'm sorry Ash, it's too expensive."
The little boy looked at her with Ash's expressive amber eyes. But the boy wasn't her Ash. Her Ash was dead.
"I'm sorry," she repeated, but placed the pokeball in the shopping cart. They were both quiet for the rest of the trip.
Sammy spat out another mouthful of blood out as the bullies continued to hit him.
"What is it, future master, can't handle a fight? If you can't handle this, how will you ever handle a Pokémon? Pathetic, come on shrimp, get up!"
Sammy stood shakily to his feet, so much smaller than all of the other boy's. One scoffed.
"Jeez, I can't believe you are the one everyone has their hopes on. You are nothing, Oak. Just because you're the son of Master Ketchum doesn't mean a thing."
Sammy saw red, rushed forward, wanting to punch and kick any part of the tormenter he could reach, when a voice sounded out.
"Hey, what are you doing?!"
The group scattered, leaving Sammy alone to face whoever had decided to disrupt them. A teenager stood, only ten or so years older than himself, an Espeon by his side.
"Hey, you alright kid?"
Sammy shrugged and kept his eyes to the ground.
Silence reigned, and Sammy looked up to see the man staring at the statue with sadness and awe in his eyes.
"Espeon," said Sammy suddenly. "The Eevvee evolution that occurs when the Pokémon is provided friendship and daylight."
The man smiled and nodded.
"Yep. That's a lot to know about Pokémon for someone so young. Do you want to be a Pokémon trainer?"
Sammy gave a hesitant nod.
"Well, you've started off in the right placed. Pallet is where the best trainer in the world was born."
The man's voice went quiet as he turned back to the statue with a wistful expression.
"I was only a little kid when I met Ash Ketchum. My brothers were trying to force me to evolve my Eevee, but I couldn't pick which evolution. Ash told me to trust in myself and my Pokémon, and if Eevee didn't want to change, he didn't have to. If it wasn't for Ash, I wouldn't have Espeon here."
The man turned to look at Sammy closely, eyes narrowed.
"You know, you look really familiar…"
Sammy hid his face in his jagged dark brown hair, black in some lights, red in others.
"My name is Mikey by the way. Come on, I'll take you home to your parents. Where do you live?"
Sammy shook his head, and when Mikey reached a hand out for him, he turned and ran. Sammy heard the man call after him, but he kept going, long and hard, until his feet hit grass instead of dirt and he has the gates ahead of him. Sammy collapsed on his knees on his mother's grave, staring blindly at the inscription while Pikachu hopped from his place on the headstone into Sammy's lap. Sammy held the Pokémon, felling the warm fur and pretending the arms around him weren't his own. Sammy knelt, and cried.
Sammy watched the battle with utter concentration, writing notes on interesting techniques and Pokémon as he went. The tapes were old, watched hundreds of times over, but Sammy still watched, still froze his hand as his mother walked onto the arena. Sammy paused the tape, and stared at the face of Ash Ketchum, reached a trembling finger out to touch the flickering screen. All he felt was cold glass.
I never knew you
All that I know is the fame that you've won
I never had you,
To show me the way
You're everyone's hero.
I'm only your son.
"Sam," asked Max from the door to his room. Sammy jumped up and flew to the boy, wrapping him in a joyous hug.
"Hey! Grandma didn't tell me you were coming!"
The older boy scratched his head sheepishly.
"I didn't tell her I was coming, I just finished getting the Viridian badge and thought I'd visit.
Sammy's eyes widened.
"Wow, does that mean you have all eight badges?!"
"Yeah, soon I'll be heading to the Indigo plateau. How are you doing?"
Max surveyed the stacks of books and piles of papers, all quoting a Pokémon statistic or battle strategy.
"Wow, I guess your studying harder than when I last saw you huh. Kinda reminds me of me at your age, when I was traveling with your mom."
Sammy liked that Max talked about his mother like he was a person, not a hero. He liked stories where his mother was human.
Max's face became more serious.
"Sammy, I actually wanted to talk to you about that. You don't need to learn every little thing about Pokémon to be a trainer. A lot of what you need to know can't be learnt in books. I know that you feel that everyone is pressuring you to become some great trainer someday, but that isn't what Ash would have wanted. He would want you to do something you loved, something that made you happy, something that you will put yourself towards 100%. He wouldn't want you to become a trainer because it's what others want from you. He would want you to follow your heart, and do want you really want."
Sammy nodded slowly, trying to digest this.
"You're saying, he would still be proud, no matter what I'd do?"
Max nodded, and Sammy smiled.
"I do really love Pokémon Max; and I want to be the greatest Master there ever was. I want to show everyone that I can do it."
Max smiled, and the two sat down to watch Pokémon battles on television, Sammy's blood thrumming with the idea that one day, one day soon, he would be one of the trainers that the whole world stopped to notice.
One day they'll know me
They'll hear what I've done
I will show the world
I'm my mother's son
I'll face any foe
Undertake any quest.
Any challenge, any task
I'll prove I'm the best!
Sammy went through the boxes his grandmother brought down from the attic, marvelling at everything of his mother's that he uncovered. Taking out Ash's first Pokedex, Sammy opened it to watch it flicker into life. The front was scratched and dusty, but the screen showed a recording of every Pokémon his mother had seen or captured on his journeys.
Placing it down carefully, Sammy rummaged through the box again, before his hand landed on a picture. Slowly, Sammy picked it up and brought it closer to his face to get a better look.
Two boys stood in the picture, arms around each other and smiling for the camera. The shorter one with dark hair looked like he was laughing at some long forgotten joke, with the others lips seemed to barely lift up in a smirk. Sammy stared at the picture, his breath growing heavy and quick.
"Your parents," said his grandmother from the open door. Sammy jumped and turned to face her, but her eyes were distant, far away as she gazed at the photograph.
"They were best friends since they were babies, but fought like cats and dogs. When your father reached the age to get a Pokémon licence, he stayed behind an extra two years so that Ash had someone to follow. Gary always felt he had to stay one step ahead for so that Ash would always follow him. I've never seen two people more lost as when your father decided he would be a researcher rather than a trainer…I have never seen two people so in love as they were when they were together again."
Sammy's hands when into fists, the photo falling on the floor.
"If he really loved him, he wouldn't have left."
Delia opened her mouth, but what could she say? Your father isn't with you because he is on an insane crusade to bring your mother back from the dead?
Sammy was silent for a while, and then picked up the picture once more. With a quick twist, the boy tore the picture in two, watching as Gary's smirking face fell to the floor. Sammy carefully folded the picture of Ash, placing it in his top pocket. Delia left the room, and went to see Professor Oak.
I'll always have you
I am a part of the tale you've begun
You will be with me
Each step of the way
I'll make everyone's hero
Be proud I'm his son
Sammy pulled on the shirt and jeans as the sun rose over the horizon, followed by the dark blue jacket. Green half gloves were pulled on by confident hands, and finally, a hat was placed on top of his spiky hair. Sammy took a deep, calming breath, patting the place on his shirt where his mother's picture rested.
Today was the day he was starting his Pokémon adventure. Today was the day we would follow in his mother's footsteps.
Sammy descended the stairs two at a time, his green backpack hanging precariously over one shoulder. He noticed the others the same time that they noticed him, and both parties froze. The room was full, Misty and Brock, Ritchie and Paul, Delia and Tracy, May and Max, even Dawn, all piled into the small house to say farewell to the young boy now that he had finally come of age. Instead, they all stared as one as if they had seen a ghost.
"Ash," breathed his Aunt Misty, eyes darting over him like she couldn't believe what she was seeing. When he took a step closer, her eyes widened in realisation and then filled with tears. The young woman hurriedly left the room while Delia asked in a choked voice, "Where did you get those clothes?"
"In one of the boxes you gave me," said Sammy in confusion. "What's wrong with Aunt Misty?"
His grandmother gave a watery smile.
"It's just; you look so much like your mother did when she first met him. It's like seeing him alive again, in you."
Sammy's cheeks burned, but Brock clapped him on the back.
"Come on, I believe this young man has a Pokémon to pick out."
Sammy stood before the three pokeballs, eyes furrowed in thought. Before him was the hardest choice he had ever had to make. Which Pokémon should he choose? Which would be the perfect starter?
Which one would his mother have picked?
Reaching a hand out for one, Sammy froze at the chuckle from his great grandfather.
"Squirtle, that's fascinating. Both your parents picked that one as their starter; of course, your father was the one who got here first."
"Squirtle was Gary Oak's starter?" asked Sammy quietly. When the Professor nodded, the boy drew his hand back as if burnt.
By the open window, a chirping sound was heard. The group turned to see Pikachu climbing into the room, a Pichu hanging from her mouth by the scruff.
Sammy recognised it as the most troublesome of the three Pichu's Pikachu and Sparky had hatched the previous summer. Spinning angrily in its mother grasp, the Pichu let out an indignant howl, letting off a stream of electricity that blew out the lights in the lab. Pikachu dropped the youngster on its rump, then nosed it over to Sammy's feet, where it sulked resentfully.
Sammy, unsure what it was Pikachu wanted, looked down at the little Pichu, who in turn looked back into his eyes. He saw a fire in the little brown orbs, a passion, an undeniable spirit. This was a Pichu that would fight its hardest no matter what, and Sammy felt something inside him click at the sight of the tiny Pokémon's gaze.
"I believe Pikachu wants you to take Pichu of your journey, Sammy. While he and Ash's other Pokémon won't battle for any other trainer, she still wants a piece of herself in the world, watching over you."
Pikachu gave a nod of accent, and Pichu looked less hostile.
"What do you think buddy?" asked Sammy Ketchum
"Do you want to come with me?"
The Pichu gave a small cry, took one last look at its mother, then leapt into the air, using Sammy's clothes to climb until it was perched precariously on his shoulder. The Pichu dug its small claws into the rim of the boy's hat, alongside the marks made years ago by its mother, and Sammy smiled.
"Looks like I have a starter Pokémon after all; the best one there is!"
The Professor smiled and nodded, while Delia tried not to cry. Once he had gotten the rest of his gear, Sammy left the laboratory to be faced by a crowd of people waiting for the first steps of the son of Ash Ketchum as a Pokémon trainer. They watched with a strange silence as the boy walked through them, Pichu on his shoulder.
Once he hit the road, Sammy brushed past a straggler, a man in a long purple shirt and down turned face, but took no notice. He would travel along the same route his mother had taken, see the same things, visit the places he had saved. Sammy was going to be the best Pokémon Master there ever was. He would show them all.
One day you'll see I will equal your fame
I will show the world, I deserve your name
And they'll tell our story
They'll know what we've done
One day I will show the world
I'm my mother's son
One day I will show the world
I'm my mother's son
Professor Oak didn't look up from his papers as the thin man entered.
"Hello, Gary. Did you see your son? He started his Pokémon journey today."
The man stood, expressionless.
"He looks a lot like his mother."
"He takes after you too. A lot less forgiving than Ash; more willing to think things through as well, traits I hope help him in the future."
"What do you want, Gary?"
"I think I found a way to bring Ash back."