The weak winter sunlight filtered into the room through a small parting in the curtains. I blinked open my still-tired eyes and yawned loudly. Beside me, the warm, furry body of Cyndaquil lay, still asleep. He looked so peaceful in sleep, nothing like the fiery tempered Pokemon with the never-ending supply of energy he was when awake. Totodile, as usual, was nowhere to be seen. The quiet young Pokemon preferred to keep herself to herself and stayed well away from Cyndaquil and I. I always wondered what she got up to, hidden away at the back of the lab. It was a mystery to all but Totodile herself.
I yawned again, and was tempted to lie down next to Cyndaquil again and head back to dreamland. It certainly was cold in the lab that morning, much colder than usual, and Cyndaquil, being a fire type, was always so warm. Sleeping next to him was like sleeping next to a giant hot water bottle. In the summer, having to be so close to him was uncomfortable, especially with his tendency to burst into flames in the middle of the night during periods of hot weather. But during the colder nights of November, December and January, his eternal warmth is much more a blessing than a curse.
I resisted the temptation, however. Today was the day that one, maybe two if we were lucky, of us would get chosen by a new trainer fresh out of Pokemon School. Being the Pokemon of a child is a much greater experience than being the Pokemon of an adult. The children are always the ones that take good care of their Pokemon and treat them more like pets than the vicious emotionless killing machines we are to most. They are the ones that burst into tears over your dead body and remember you forever in oppose to throwing your corpse aside and replacing you in an instant. It's so much easier to form a strong bond with a child, because they respect you and see you as a living animal that has a personality and its own likes and dislikes and feelings. Adults (well, not all of them, but most) see how as having about as many emotions as a robot. In their eyes, we exist for their entertainment and nothing more.
But nobody wants a sleepy Pokemon. It gives the wrong impression, an impression of laziness. The people of Johto base everything on first impressions. You have to look the part, or you'll just never get anywhere in life. If you're a Pokemon, that is. Humans don't seem to suffer the same sort of judgement. It was important that I controlled my tiredness and behaved in a way that would convince a young trainer that I was the perfect Pokemon for them. The Professor had told us how important it was that we proved to them we were capable of the hardships of a journey and could be ready to fight for them whenever the needed us.
It was still quite early in the morning, and the lab was silent. The workers hadn't arrived yet, and the Professor was most likely still asleep. I sat down in the middle of the lab and shivered. I hated the winter. Its just so... cold! Cyndaquil didn't seem to mind. But then again, his flames and thick fur kept him warm. The most the leaf growing from my head could do with keep the sun out of my eyes during the summer, and I was stuck with scales instead of fur. I'd do anything to be a different species.
If I could chose any Pokemon to be, it would most definitely be Altaria. They fly so gracefully, despite those awkward-looking wings. Unlike my species, Swablu and Altaria are loved by many in the world of Pokemon. I have seen so many of these beautiful birds in elite battles and among the Pokemon of the very best. They are a respected, reliable battler, a cute and faithful companion and a fascinating, wonderful species all rolled into one amazing Pokemon. No matter what your profession or age is, there will be something about the Altaria line that can make you want it. I wish I could say the same for the Meganium line.
Although Meganium are incredibly powerful and very talented battlers, they seem to be nonexistent to most trainers. We are generally smart, loyal and talented Pokemon, and despite our silly appearance we can be lethal on a battlefield. However, before evolution, Chikorita's defensive abilities aren't all that great. Far too many times have I heard tales of a Chikorita dying in a fight before it even got a chance to prove itself. Our basic form's low mortality rate gives the species a terrible reputation among battlers. A Chikorita is always the last to be chosen as a starter and the first to be abandoned for something superior. Some live to regret the choice of leaving one behind, but many don't give their Chikorita a second thought.
A loud bang brought me back to reality. I looked around, seeking the source of the sound. My attention is grabbed by a newcomer in the lab. He was dressed from head to toe in black, with shoulder length dark red hair. His eyes were a shade of red that was almost identical to his hair. I didn't recognize him, so he definitely wasn't just an early bird of a worker. He looked at me briefly. I shivered. I didn't like the way he stared at me. Actually, the way he stared at pretty much everything. It made me feel uncomfortable. I trotted behind a chair and hid from the scary man with the red hair and eyes.
I didn't know what the man did while he was in the lab. All I knew at the time was that I was very glad when he had gone. However, I quickly realized something that made my heart skip a beat. Cyndaquil was gone. Had the man stolen Cyndaquil? Or did the Professor say he could take my friend? Only time will tell.
I was suddenly aware of someone else staring at me, in a much less off putting way than Cyndaquil's kidnapper had. I turned my head to see Totodile looking at me.
"He took Cyndaquil," she said in a low, quiet voice. I don't think, up until that point, that I had ever heard the young water Pokemon speak. That was probably due to the fact that she tried to avoid Cyndaquil and I at all costs during our time at the lab.
"Who do you think he was?" I asked her. She shrugged her shoulders.
"Dunno. He was creepy though," she said. I nodded in agreement.
"Who do you think will get chosen today?" I asked.
"Probably you. Elm said the trainer's a girl. The girls, well, the young ones at least, always pick the cute ones. And you don't get any cuter than Chikorita," she said with a smile.
"But girls also seem to have a thing for water types. We both stand a chance of getting picked," I said, and it was the truth. Female Pokemon trainers love water types, especially female Pokemon trainers from Johto. Maybe because most of the cutest Johto Pokemon are water types, and Totodile was right – girls do seem to pick their Pokemon based on how cute they think they are.
A sudden wave of tiredness came over me, and I yawned loudly. My eyelids felt incredibly heavy, like someone had attached weights to each and every one of my eyelashes. My energy was drained, and I just wanted to curl up on the floor, despite the fact that it was colder than ice underneath my hooves.
"You look exhausted. You should probably get some sleep," Totodile said, a hint of concern entering her voice.
"I'm fine," I said. I didn't want to miss my chance of a trainer. I didn't want to be the last one to get chosen, even if one of us was stolen. However, another yawn soon betrayed the reality.
"You're not. And there's no point fighting it – no matter how cute you are, no-one's gonna pick you if you're yawning," Totodile said.
I yawned again, and realised Totodile was right. Although it would be hard to prove I had the energy to be a good battler if I slept until the new trainer came, it would be even more of a challenge if I didn't try and recover from this sudden energy drain. I lay down on the floor, tucking my legs underneath me. With my nose close to my tail, I closed my eyes and let sleep take over me.