A/N. Yet another Pokémon fanfic. I'll get to updating my older fanfics at a later date, but for now I have this new idea I at least want to get the first chapter posted for. This is written under a particular scenario where a fem!Ash hadn't met Lance yet on her journey, and he is exactly like his Pokémon Special counter-part. Also, N. Harmonia will be in this, as a sort of long distance friend of Lance, with his personality being the same as it was before he met Touko and Touya and before Team Plasma fell apart.

Summary: "It's very difficult to breath, isn't it?"

Abandoned by those that she once believed were her friends, young pokémon trainer Ashe Ketchum finds herself waking up in the hospital after a particular battle with a strangely reckless and powerful trainer goes horribly awry. Left to pick up the pieces of her once happy life on her own, the shock of all the she has lost almost becomes too much for her to deal with. Hope however, comes in the form of two strange and very idealistic boys who supposedly, can hear and understand pokémon. But is the supposed future of happiness that they offer really the right thing to do, or is she just allowing herself to be led down a much darker path? Sometimes secrets are best kept secret, and some scars best left to heal on their own.

Warning! Depressed Fem!Ash fanfic, a lot of character death prior to the main story, Pokémon Special!Lance. AU! World. Pairings as of yet are non-existent though maybe some not involving Ashe may appear later.

Disclaimer: I own nothing!

Episode 1: Waking Up Alone

"I told you she was reckless… You had to stick up for her and encourage her though, didn't you?"

She wasn't entirely sure what had transpired between the time of her falling unconscious and the day of her awakening, all that she knew at the time was that her dreams over those past few days had been nothing but nightmarish images and vivid hallucinations she had never wanted to see. As such, it had come as no shock to her that when she had finally woken up, after a couple of weeks of endless tossing and turning, pained whimpering, and general discomfort she awoke to an endless stream of tears from her still exhausted eyes. One thing was for sure however. In these four white walls of the hospital that she had found herself waking up in, strapped to a forever uncomfortable hospital bed with horribly white sheets and an uncomfortable medicinal smell hanging in the air.

"Now don't blame it on me! If you hadn't belittled her so often, she wouldn't have felt the need to prove herself so much to you!"

She was alone, very much alone.

"Oh please, you practically coddled her! And look where it got us, they are all dead!"

And in all honesty, she wasn't quite sure how things had ended up the way they had. Memories of the days prior to whatever event had resulted in her unexpected stay in the hospital were fuzzy at best, and it seemed a good portion of them could, metaphorically speaking, be called pitch black. She herself unable to recall even the slightest thing about what had occurred the day of the incident no matter how hard she tried, or what had led up to said incident occurring. Nobody, not even the usually nice doctors and nurses would tell her anything, and back when her friends and her mother had still been around for her to talk to, they just frowned disapprovingly at her and shook their heads when she asked, leaving the room seconds afterwards, basically ordering her to figure it out on her own. The most she ever was able to get out of them was that something had gone wrong, horribly so, but they would never elaborate, instead preferring to call it "The Incident", rather than naming anything specific that might've occurred. She guessed that they all must've gotten tired of her constant questioning, because eventually they just stopped showing up all together, leaving her bewildered as they said their goodbyes with eyes that barely managed to hide the hatred and guilt they seemed to be forcing onto her, blaming her for something she had no clue of.

"Repression." One particularly kind doctor had said, a look of pity in his eyes as he had continued to elaborate on why she couldn't recall anything in particular about the incident. "It happens when someone goes through something particularly traumatic. Their mind just blocks it out and refuses to recall it in any way, shape, or form. Subconsciously of course, the mind just seems to understand that it is too much for the victim to handle just yet, and so locks it up nice and tight, metaphorically speaking of course, behind a big solid door that no matter how hard one tries, it just can't be broken through normally."

She had had to refrain from asking where the metaphorical "key" for this "door" within her mind would be, as it seemed that that was all she was going to get out of the man. She was happy none the less. It had been the most she had gotten out of anybody through this whole ordeal, not even the people that she thought were her closest friends being honest with her in any sort of form. The most she had ever gotten out of one of them was a biting insult from her childhood rival-turned-friend Gary Oak, and the very clear statement that she had somehow managed to mess up, "Big time", as he had put it so eloquently. That had been the last time she had seen any of her "friends", or even her own mother for that matter. She had tried requesting that Prof. Oak bring in at least one of her pokémon to visit, so she wouldn't feel so lonely, but the nurse had come back looking quite shaken, Prof. Oak having denied the request outright and telling the nurse in no uncertain terms that the young trainer in question was to not be in any sort of contact with any of her remaining pokémon what so ever.

That was something else that bothered her as well, what had the professor meant when he had said "remaining pokémon". She didn't have Pikachu or the other five pokémon she had been in possession of before the incident that had left her hospitalized on her at that very moment in time, she thought they might have gotten sent to Prof. Oak's since she was out of commission and couldn't take care of them herself at the time. The fact that he had said remaing, meant that some were missing, and that very meaning left a cold, dark rock of apprehension in the pit of her stomach.

She would've gone to investigate the matter for herself of course, her pokémon practically being her whole entire world, but she was forced to stay in the hospital in whatever town she was currently located in, the doctors stating very clearly that she was in no condition to be out on her own, and for her at least wait until she was fully healed and recovered; her right arm having been broken during the incident and her left wrist wrapped tightly in heavy gauze out of somehow becoming seriously sprained, her left ankle was even worse than the left wrist, having been sprained to the point where she wouldn't be able to walk on it without help for a good while, and her body covered in several scratches and bruises of varying severity. There was also the fact that they were unsure if she would be able to completely see as she used to or not, her right eye having been injured in some way as well as the serious blow to the head that she took that could very well be part of the reason for her amnesia. They seemed to dread her memories of the incident coming back as well, obviously worried about her mental state should she ever gain the ability to recall the events again.

They seemed to have good right to worry as well, for the answer to how bad off she would become came when those memories finally did return, and in the worst and most unexpected way possible.

As it turned out, those strange, nightmarish dreams, had all been very real memories, and she had regretted every second of them all.

A/N. Ok, in case you guys are wondering what the hell happened here, basically Ashe got challenged by some random dude to a pokémon battle and lost, badly. The dude was crazy and his pokémon violent, and all of Ashe's team were either heavily injured or died, and those that were heavily injured died later while in the custody of the pokémon center save for one. Now mind you the dude had his trainers license revoked and all of his pokémon confiscated after the battle, but Ashe was also heavily injured as well, having attempted to save at least one of her pokémon from the other trainer's wrath but failing anyways. So a whole five pokémon died, and though she couldn't have possibly known that the pokémon battle would have turned out the way it did, and that almost all six of the pokémon she had on her save for Pikachu, would die as a result of said challenge, she is getting blamed for everything by both her family and her friends. Thus resulting in them abandoning her without a care as to how that could possibly affect her already fragile mental state.

The repression thing was only as bad as it was because of the head blow she suffered as a result of trying to protect her pokémon from the other trainer's attacks. And as for why Prof. Oak won't allow Ashe to see any of her remaining pokémon while in the hospital is not because he is afraid it might result in a bad relapse, but because he was told a very bad version of the events that painted Ashe as more of the bad guy than the other trainer that had challenged her in the first place, though it was clearly stated that he was at fault as well, Ashe was the one they pinned the most blame on. Resulting in Prof. Oak seeing Ashe in a sort of, but not entirely, bad light, seeing the chance that she might have gotten a bit reckless and uncaring with her pokémon in the time that he had lost saw her. For now, he is keeping her pokémon away from her until he can meet with her in person, which won't happen until he comes to visit her since the people who work the hospital won't allow her to be outside on her own in her current mental state.

As you can all see, this is supposed to be a really depressing story. Anyways, I hope you guys enjoyed the chapter and thanks for reading again. Please review and tell me what you think about this. See ya!