Author's note: Hey guys! I've been kicking around the idea of a mystery story for a long time now, and I thought, Why not Pokemon? So I've got this little idea mapped out that with hopefully branch out into something bigger. Please enjoy~

Disclaimer: I don't own Pokemon at all.

"A Study In Red"

Chapter one

I wanted to be the very best. Like no one ever was.

I wasn't. In fact, I was a pretty sub-par trainer. Sure, I defeated plenty of gyms, some on pure dumb luck, and some with pretty decent skill. But no matter what, I never won a championship. At least, none that mattered. Sure I'd win this dinky little local jazz, but when it came to the big leagues, I always missed by an inch. Always to some rival. That wasn't the worst of it though.

The final straw was when they let friggin' legendaries compete. mMy party struggled to defeat a Darkrai and then had their efforts demolished when the bastard sent out a LATIOS. After that, I knew there must have been some higher power, or something, that didn't want me to ever win or become a Pokemon Master. Pokemon Master...ha! What a silly dream. What does it even mean? I've spent countless nights wondering that.

I leaned back in my chair and sipped my scotch. My tongue's so numb to it now, I can barely taste it's bitterness.

My name is Ash Ketchum. Ex-Pokemon trainer. At age 26, I am now a Detective living in Goldenrod City. The city life is very hustle and bustle, so it really puts a fire under my ass. Much like training used to. I managed to get pretty high up in the ranks of Goldenrod Police Department, so now I work in my own private office where I ponder to myself until I get my next case. I do a lot of pondering these days.

"Pika?" I heard from behind me. I turned around in my swivel chair, and I saw my buddy Pikachu looking up at me with wanting eyes. I chuckled and picked him up. I held him comfortably in my lap as I rubbed the fur on his back with my index and middle finger. Use to be Pikachu would just climb up my body and jump on my head. He's a little more tired these days. With all the training I put him through, it's no wonder he's gotten lazier in his old age. He's still in peak condition though, I make sure he comes with me every morning during my early jog.

"Been pretty quiet around here, huh pal?" I asked my little yellow sidekick. Pikachu purred as he nuzzled into my thigh.

"Ring Ring Ring! Phone Call! Phone Call!" echoed throughout my office and it nearly made me fall over in surprise.

"Maybe I spoke too soon." I remarked as I reached for my phone. I answered it. "Goldenrod Police Department, Ash Ketchum speaking, how can I help you?" I spoke my script and waited for the caller to reply. They didn't. I could hear faint breathing though, so I knew someone was there. "Hello?" I waited still. I heard mutterings, as if they were having trouble speaking. "I'm hanging up now."

"Ash..." I heard finally. It was a woman's voice. Timid and weak. Not my type. I liked the fiery ones. "It's been a long time."

"Do I know you ma'am?" I leaned back in my chair with a smirk. Propping my feet up on my desk, I silently tried to connect her voice to any familiar faces. The voice was familiar in a way, but yet, still it wasn't.

"It's me, Misty."

The world stopped. Time and Space stayed at a standstill and all of the noise in the world was silenced. I sat up.

"Misty." I replied from behind a lump in my throat.

"You do remember me...don't you?" Her voice died out a bit at the end. Surely this couldn't be the same hot-tempered rose of my youth? She sounded as if she'd lost all the intensity she once possessed. People change I suppose. Especially after six years.

"Of course I do, Mist. You're right, it has been a long time. How are you?"

"I've been better." I started to hear the faint sound of sobbing in the background.

"Who's crying?" I asked, my confusion growing by the second.

"Daisy...we've had a bit of tragedy in the family I'm afraid." She sounded as if she were holding back tears herself.

"What happened?" I took out my notepad. I always took notes when I got calls. It felt weird doing it with Misty, but habits are hard to break.

"Violet and Lily were found dead two nights ago." She managed to say through sniffles. I was shocked. The Sensational Sisters? I was a fan, like most men aged 14-30.

"My God...Murdered?" I asked.

"They were found stuffed in a dumpster, we don't think it was natural causes." There was the sarcastic girl I knew. I almost chuckled, But that would have been inappropriate.

"Gosh Mist, I'm real sorry for your loss. I could come down if you'd like?" I offered. Honestly though, I'd hoped she'd say no. It'd be hard to face her again. Plus, I don't do well at funerals.

"Actually, that's why I called." Damn! "The funeral is this weekend, and we'd really like if you could make it."

"I'll clear my schedule." I said without hesitation. Why? I have no clue. Maybe I was getting nutty over a voice I hadn't heard in awhile. "I gotta ask though, Mist. How come I haven't heard about this in the papers? Your sisters were pretty famous."

"A police officer found the bodies before any citizen did, luckily, so we managed to keep it away from the press. Naturally though everyone here in Cerulean knows, so it'll hit the papers soon enough." I heard angry yelling on the other side of the phone and Daisy cursing. "Shhh, Daisy! Anyways, please come Ash. Brock and everyone are coming too, even Delia. So we'd...I'd like you to be there as well." There it was. The soft voice of an angel that could make me do anything.

"I'll take the Magnet Train down to Saffron Thursday and rent a motel room in Cerulean." I said, followed by the sound of a cracking whip. "But Mist, I gotta ask, has the Cerulean Police Department picked up any leads yet on the killer?"

"No leads." She was starting to cry. "Please just come. We can talk then."

"Okay. I will."

"Goodbye Ash." She hung up.

"The Sensational Sisters are dead?!" Commissioner Jenny yelled from behind her office door.

"I don't think they heard you in Pewter, ma'am, maybe try a little louder." I responded dryly.

"Sorry, I assume they're keeping it hush-hush if even I haven't heard about it yet." She leaned back in her chair, crossing those long legs of hers. As she sipped the iced latte she had me get for her, I could tell she was in deep thought.

"I'd appreciate it if you didn't let anyone else get wind of this. You see, this was told to me in confidence; I would just like to request my vacation time take effect on Thursday, if it's no trouble of course." Jenny still sipped her latte as she considered this.

"I suppose you have been working hard lately. Maybe getting out of the city would be good for you. You seem ragged." The blue-haired woman jibed me, as she leaned forward with a hand on her cheek. "Have you been drinking?"

"Sipping." I corrected.

"Well lay off of it or I'll have you canned, even if you are the sharpest detec we have on these streets." She half scolded, half complimented me. She did that a lot. Jenny was always like that, ever since we first met in the academy. She progressed quite a bit higher up the ladder than I did, seeing as how she was part of the famous Officer Jenny bloodline. She had a genetic knack for police work, and she did it well. "Got it Ashy?" She waved her eyelashes at me, and I drew back.

"Got it, boss." Her eyebrows slumped and her hand fell from her cheek.

"You can call me Jenny, you know. We've known each other for years." True, she was like a sister to me.

"Sorry, sometimes I just can't turn my professionalism off." I shrugged. She nodded and sighed.

"Ash," She started. She didn't speak for a moment, "I'm worried about you." I cocked a brow.

"What?" I asked in confusion.

"Don't 'what' me, Ketchum. I know you like the back of my glove," she said as she raised her gloved hand, "You've been moody, anti-social with the rest of the department—"

"I've been working." I interrupted.

"You've been looking at the wall and drinking. I swear I heard muted jazz coming from you're office the other day. What are you, the noir detective now?" I rolled my eyes. "What happened to: 'Ash Ketchum from Pallet Town!'? That's actually how you introduced yourself to me when we first met." I shrugged.

"I was 19 the last time I said that. C'mon Jen, people grow up." Pikachu hopped up on the desk, and Jenny started to pet him. Pikachu smiled and nuzzled into her hand.

"I suppose. I won't press on it, but just try to lay off the sauce a bit? You can have your vacation time."

"Thank you, ma'am, I'll see you next Thursday," I bowed slightly and whistled, "C'mon Pikachu," Pikachu jumped off of the desk and walked by my heels as we left the office.

Wednesday night: The night before I have to go back to Kanto. After I finished packing, I sat on my bed and flipped through my old albums. Pictures of a happier time that seemed to have happened a millennia ago.

"Can't believe we're going back, eh, Pikachu?" I said softly as Pikachu snored next to me. "We'll see Oak, and Mom. Haven't seen them since Christmas. Brock and Tracey, maybe Gary too." Flipping through the pictures, my nostalgia filter was clogging up my vision. Why did I ever leave home? If I was going to settle down with a real job, why not stick to say, Saffron City? It was closer to home, and all my friends.

I then flipped to a page towards the middle, the last page with pictures in it. It was Brock, Dawn and I. I was in the middle with a sullen face, Brock and Dawn hugging me and mugging for the camera. I remember when this was taken. The Lily of the Valley Conference, in Sinnoh. Memories came flooding back. Of Tobias, that cheater. Standing atop his 1st place podium, holding a trophy that shouldn't belong to him.

After throwing the photo album out the window, I calmly prepared a scotch on the rocks.

Thursday morning, 6:00 AM. I crawled out of bed and prepared my breakfast: three egg-whites and two pieces of toast with a large cup of homebrewed coffee; hazelnut, black. I hopped in the shower for about 15 minutes and then brushed my teeth. I go to my room and put on a blue dress shirt and lazy tan slacks. I wrapped a black belt around my waist and applied a zigg-zagged beige tie to my neck.

I then remembered I was on vacation and promptly disrobed. I changed into a pair of faded blue jeans and a black undershirt. I re-applied my belt and put my brown coat on. I awoke Pikachu, grabbed my suitcase and was swiftly out the door.

I caught the 7:30 to Saffron just on time. I boarded the train and took a window seat towards the back of the cart. Pikachu hopped in my lap.

"Pikapika, chuu." He said.

"I hate trains too, buddy. So boring." Pikachu looked up at me. He looked sad.

"What's wrong pal?" I asked, concerned. I had long been able to communicate with my Pokemon. Our bond was that deep.

"Pikachu Pika pika." He spoke quickly. I just looked at him for a moment. He nuzzled my cheek.

"Oh, you're worried about me too, huh pal?" I pet him on the head when he nodded in approval. "Don't worry Pikachu. I'm fine. It'll be good to be home for once." Pikachu nuzzled against my chest. He seemed to sigh. Just then, the intercom buzzed, and I was awarded the sound of an overly bubbly female voice announcing:

"Goldenrod Magnet Train now departing for Saffron City!" Bing Bong. I leaned back in my chair and held Pikachu like a baby. I closed my eyes, and fell into a slumber.

I awoke stiffly, my back and neck both aching to Hell. Pikachu licked my face until my eyes opened and starting talking at me.

"I'm up, I'm up!" I said, waving him away. "Are we in Saffron?" Pikachu nodded in the negative, but then started rubbing his stomach. "Ohhh, you're hungry, huh pal?" He smiled and nodded 'yes'. My stomach then growled. "Me too, actually. Maybe I'll order something."

I ordered a rather unsatisfying sandwich from the food cart, and got a bottle of ketchup for Pikachu. On my last bite, I felt my phone vibrate in my pocket. I looked at the caller ID: "Comm. Jenny".

"Commissioner Jenny," I greeted, "I do believe I'm on vacation." I picked my teeth with the toothpick from my sandwich and waited for Jenny to respond.

"Sorry, Ash," She said with a chuckle, "Just calling to tell you a few from our department are on their way to Saffron as well. Seems there's going to be a press release with Misty Waterflower as Key Note speaker, a friend of yours if I remember correctly?"

"Yes, she and I are old friends." I lazily stroked Pikachu's back as he slurped down that ketchup. "Now that I mention it, there are quite a few plainclothes' on this train. I think I see one of you Jenny's in a red dress. Not as pretty as you though, commissioner." She started to laugh.

"Alllllright. Just wanted to make sure you didn't think we were spying on you. How's the train? You must be almost there by now."

"Another hour at least. The train's alright, I suppose. Cleaner than most. I've always hated the train though."

"Alri-wel—hope—there safel—Ash? Hello?" Stupid interference. "eh-crash—burn-Ash?" Hm? I thought I had heard something strange there.

"Jenny, sorry, got some static, what did you say?" The interference was still there but it seems

"I-said—hope you get there safe—can you here me?" She repeated.

"A bit. Thanks for the good wishes Jenny, I'll call you when I'm at the hotel."

"Okay, goodbye Ash." As I hung up my phone, I heard the intercom buzz again. It was a different voice this time, someone must have taken over for the over enthusiastic girl from before. It was replaced by a gruff, yet dumb voice.

"Attention passengers, this is Stephan, your driver. There's a thunderstorm brewin' above the tunnels, so our wi-fi might be a bit fuzzy. We apologize for this incongenience." Did he just say 'incongenience'? What an idiot, though his voice was very familiar. I pondered on this for a moment, but shrugged it off. I decided to go back to sleep until we got to Saffron.

My back hurt too much. I couldn't sleep. So, I resigned to lie back and scratch a happy Pikachu's fur.

END OF CHAPTER 1

SO! I hope you guy's liked chapter one! So many questions, too many answers. I'll try to get chapter two done soon, btu I'd LOVE feedback! Review, flame, fav, whatever! Thanks for reading :')