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an identity crisis
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whisk - pokegamefic summer exchange 
25th-Aug-2010 02:04 am
It took me forever, but I finally did my pokegamefic exchange for kimivalkyrie . Holy fuq, this was hard. Kanto characters are not my forte. Especially Green. And it had to be Green-centric. xD 

Anyway, I'm glad I got this done but I'm...not sure I'm happy with it. Work's drained me, and my writing isn't like it used to be. I'm also not having a good month, so writing my usual fluffeverywhere is just too hard. BUT NO MORE COMPLAINING FROM ME.

Also, Red talks a lot in the beginning of this fic, but there's a reason for that. So no, you're not hearing things.

Also, apparently Pikachu is furry. I didn't know that.

Thank you, chrysa , for being beta. The line, "Mt. Silver doesn't count, either," was also her idea. Haha.

And originally Green called Leaf a filthy whore (LOL ikr). So, thank goodness I had an awesome beta because that would just be inappropriate on so many levels.

Title: Whisk
Rating: T, for swearing and sexual jokes. Innuendos. ...etc.
Characters: Green, Red, Leaf, and Pikachu.
Pairings: Green/Red, but sometimes I feel like there's Green/Leaf. I was going to make it kind of unclear, but my bias is pretty damn obvious, so...
Summary: Red's tired of Leaf and Green's constantly bickering, so he sends them on a camping trip to better their relationship. It doesn't really work.
Prompt:

If I could have walked far away
With only this overwhelming truth to rely on
If I could move on from here
Listening carefully to the voice in my heart the whole time
If I could have heard that voice
Screaming tearfully
If I could have regained
The voice I lost track of
Through all the lies
If I could have entrusted everything
To a love that I could have expressed more honestly
I’m sure it would have looked stagnant
The world grows more colourful
Like an illusion



She whisked by him again, a blur of red and blue with yellow at her heels. Familiar colors on a somewhat unfamiliar friend. She touched the trees as she weaved through them, as if he could trace her by those fingerprints, now branded permanently into the faded, crumbling bark. It seemed like she needed to leave a mark to move on, leave a piece of her behind in order for her to keep going, keep moving. Like she didn’t want to be forgotten, left behind.

He wondered from afar if she felt the same way about the people she frequently met, and if that was why she acted so distinctly, so free-spirited and loose. She wanted to touch not just the outer-shells of elements but the roots, the seeds – all the things that made them grow, as well as the things that made them weaken and break. She could feel it all, he figured. She could feel it in all she met and touched.

As she passed him again, carelessly brushing his sleeve, he thought of a blur that shared two of her colors – red, with yellow at his heels.

He wondered how many times he’d touched him, how many times he’d been passed by him like this, and if he’d left a mark at all.

And then he remembered why he was here.
-x-
“Leaf, can you pass the butter?”

She arched a fine-tuned eyebrow at him and continued chewing her toast, then dropped her blue eyes to the plate right by her elbow. It was almost as if the question and object of interest hadn’t yet connected in her head, despite their incredible proximity. Even when it seemed like it finally clicked, she refused to slide it his way.

“Leaf? Leaf. Leaf.” Green waved his fork dangerously in front of her face, as if threatening to spear her out of what seemed to him like some sort of mental relapse. “All you have to do is push it over here. Or at the very least, I can meet you halfway if you’re really that lethargic… Hello?”

“If it’s that simple, why don’t you do it?” she finally retorted after what felt like just a few seconds short of a century.

Green’s patience wore down nearly as fast as the butter was melting in the late-August air. “It requires me to reach across the table. What if I fall into the plate of bacon?”

“You’re a gym leader. One of the best in Kanto, too.” She leaned back in her chair, scrutinizing him with a suspicious stare. “Aren’t you supposed to be fit? I think you can handle such a feat. You brave Mt. Silver all the time. Mt. Bacon really shouldn’t be too much of a challenge.”

He slammed both fists on the table, shocking both Leaf and Red (not that he wasn’t already) into silence. “Do you wake up on the wrong side of the couch every morning like this? If so, get the hell out right now.” He waited a moment, then, “Bitch.” He slouched. “I just wanted some butter.”

Red suddenly took great interest in the space underneath the kitchen table.

“Oh, you want it that bad?” Leaf smirked almost devilishly, rising slowly from her seat. “Then let me just butter you right up!” she shouted before grabbing the block of it and chucking it straight into his face. “Call me bitch again and there’s plenty of bread to go with that. A whole loaf, in fact.”

The Champion treasured his life more than his dignity, and crawled underneath just as the bread battle unfolded. Pikachu and Eevee sat with him, their ears pricked forward as they caught bits and pieces of crumbs as well as insults.

“I let you stay in my home three days, and you won’t even pass the butter? Of course I’m going to call you a bitch!”

“Normal hosts are courteous of their guests! Jackass!”

“Not when they’re absolutely filthy!”

She gasped, actually insulted for once, and was about to snap back when the table flipping over shocked them both. Dishes and bowls scattered across the floor, emptied of their contents in the midst of Leaf and Green’s earlier skirmish – including even the messier ingredients, such as the greasy sausages and frosted cinnamon buns. Syrup dripped from the ceiling like mocha-colored icicles, drizzling onto their hair and flustered faces. Green’s dining room looked nearly war-torn and smelled a lot like he imagined the inside of a pancake might.

Leaf pulled at some of the strawberry jam stuck in her hair and looked toward Red with a deepening concern. She’d never seen him lose his temper before (did he even have one?), and neither had Green. They stared expectantly at him, then remembered at the same time that he probably wouldn’t explain why he’d just tipped their entire table.

“Enough,” he said solemnly. “I’m sick of this. You two need to learn to get along like normal adults. Now.”

Green wasn’t sure what to be most shocked at today – the strips of bacon stuck in his hair, or more than one word leaving his boyfriend's lips.

Red continued, and Green hoped he’d be able to find his slacked jaw on the floor mixed in with the shambles. “I understand a need to communicate without using words, but to fling things at each other? I’m giving you until tomorrow night to be on agreeable terms.”

“But how-”

The Champion silenced his friend by pressing his palm on his mouth. “A camping trip to Viridian Forest. You, Leaf, and Pikachu – since you need someone mature with you to make sure you don’t destroy the woods. You’ve got twenty minutes to pack and leave.”

“Who’s going to clean up-”

Red shook his head.

“Woah,” Leaf said. “Green, did you finally teach him to talk?”

He shoved her toward her stuff, and then pointed his old neighbor to their shared bedroom.

When they finally had all their stuff together, Red pushed them out and over the threshold with an uncharacteristic roughness (or at least, to Leaf) and no more words, in fear for overuse of his voicebox. He gave them a thumbs up, then slowly shut the door on them.

“Wait,” Green said once he was certain Red was out of earshot. “Did he just kick me out of my own fucking apartment?”

“Too bad,” Leaf replied, yawning. “The whole place was like a breakfast buffet. And you wouldn’t need anyone to pass you the butter – your chair was covered in it.”

He sighed and slapped his forehead with an exaggerated groan.
-x-
“Why here?” He looked at the patch of land she picked like it was actually a swamp and not a meadow, but she stepped into it like she owned it, reigned over it.

“It’ll keep us away from the pestering bug catchers, bug pokemon, and I’ve camped out here before, so I know it well,” she responded, relieved they’d finally managed to compromise on a spot after a solid hour of arguing (and a battle or two that settled things once and for all).

He watched as she disappeared into the thick-trunked trees to gather firewood before he inched back and took the area in from afar, finding he couldn’t complain too much. When she’d led him through at least twenty rows of maples and oaks, he admitted to being incredibly suspicious of their destination. It didn’t help that Pikachu seemed content to just traipse after the wayward girl into what could be their untimely demise. And as the ground sloped unexpectedly, he tripped and fell, and thought Leaf had taken him to the edge of the world and planned to push him off of it (not that he hadn’t provoked it every once in a while). But when he got up, he realized she hadn’t been making the “secret spot” up to trick him.

It was actually quite nice – a little field no one seemed to know of but the three of them. At least if he ended up strangling her to death in frustration here,nobody would find out. 

And the electric rat seemed especially familiar with it, Green figured, as he curled up right in the center of the meadow and fell asleep in the sun.

His personal tour guide and woodland expert returned holding bundles upon bundles of twigs, and even a few large logs. To say he wasn’t impressed by her strength was an understatement, and to say he also didn’t think her more masculine than himself at that moment would be the one of the century. She hadn’t even broken a sweat in the process.

Leaf threw them all down near Pikachu, and then immediately began to plot out placement of her tent, driving the stakes into the ground when she seemed satisfied.

“Uhh,” Green said after watching her a while, “how do you have all this camping equipment on you? We only had twenty minutes to pack before we got kicked out.” He sat cross-legged by Red’s pokemon unconsciously, observing her like she was some sort of new, unusual species.

“Do you think when I travel I use Pokemon Centers? That’s for pussies, Green. Pussies.” She appeared to be having a lot of fun throwing that awfully filthy word around.

“That’s what I did,” he admitted. “It worked out just fine.”

“But then you don’t really experience the world,” she said somewhat thoughtfully through intermittent slamming of the stakes. “You’ve never slept under the stars?”

“Not everyone comes from the wilderness like you, Leaf.” He grinned smugly, proud of his little snarky remark that he didn’t expect to be topped right away.

He felt a sting on his forehead; she'd found a twig to throw at him. It was a small wound, but through it he could hear his raging pulse, and a few drops of blood. “Not everyone grows up next to the Missing Link, either, but at the end of the day, we’re still alive and need to show it somehow. I’ll be damned if I keep myself cooped up on a couch.”

Green was about to retort, but kept quiet when he thought of how he used to spend his days at ten years old, alone with nothing but his pokemon locked away in their pokeballs. It was lonely, but it was still warmer than where she used to stay. He was safe, protected. There was food and shelter. There was peace and quiet. He almost wished now that he hadn’t been so rude and asked her to join him, especially when he thought of their winters here, and all the dangers that came with the Team Rocket takeover in their youth. He pictured her all alone here in this field, with nobody at all to prevent her from harm aside from her pokemon and some twigs.

He sighed, hesitantly touching the tender break in skin before he came into contact with a huge splinter, much to his dismay. Green wasn’t sure whether to be mad at her for tossing a stick at his head, or angry at himself for provoking this dangerous, untamed beast. He thought of how he should’ve been kinder and less of a bully as a kid and how that would’ve altered what was happening now. This was going to be a long night - a thought that came when he spotted one of the larger logs resting right by her hands. Though he supposed blacking out would be better than dealing with all of this. He wouldn’t have to think or feel guilty in a coma.

She turned around when she heard him groan in pain.

“Sorry!” she apologized, before she went to fetch tweezers from the medical kit in her bag.

She really came prepared, he realized. Or, at the very least, prepared for injuries. Not that he could blame her, considering what their relationship seemed to be based on these days. It even drew blood.

“Sit still, and don’t move,” she murmured gently. Leaf leaned forward with one hand on his knee, the other gingerly coaxing out the small fragment of wood with the tweezers. Her warm breath on his cut made him back away for a moment, and also brought on a wave of nostalgia he hadn’t been expecting. She managed to pluck it out before he even noticed, and he eyed her askance.

“Have you done this before?” He seemed genuinely curious, which irked her.

She glared. “Duh. You and Red were always getting injured when we were kids, and who looked after you?” She smacked him lightly on the side of the head, showing mercy in place of her earlier hazardous actions. “I did.” The young trainer sighed. “It’s weird, really. I thought gay guys preferred running through fields of flowers, but you two loved climbing trees and then pushing each other out of them.”

He wasn’t sure how to respond to her blunt stereotyping, though he knew she was teasing him, just like she always had. “We do not run through fields of flowers.”

“Pi-pi chu,” the yellow rat disagreed quickly.

Leaf laughed and high-fived him. “I’ll bet they hold hands while doing it! Take a picture for me next time, all right?”

Pikachu grinned and nodded.

It was that moment in his young life he decided he was surrounded by not just flowers, but also morons.

Morons that turned the corners of his mouth just the smallest bit.
-x-
She and Pikachu settled in for a nap halfway through their day, curled up like two tired kids. They shared a bond he had to admit he was jealous of; he and Pikachu had lived together for well over a year now and still didn’t get along. Leaf visited once every few months or so, and she and the rat were like the best of friends. They even shared secrets, and (or least he assumed) gossiped about him behind his back.

Green supposed it was his own fault he didn’t get along with him – they both vied constantly for Red’s attention and never came to a compromise about it.

And Leaf had this aura about her that was both irritating and somewhat soothing, he determined as he sat at the pile of twigs nearby, watching them sleep. He already had Daisy, but she still felt like another older sister to him, verging on some sort of a strange mother figure. She certainly had a mother complex the way she constantly loved to look after people, always bent on making a difference in the lives she came into contact with.

She may have wanted to touch the lives of millions – and probably would – but he just wanted to touch one.

He slowly leaned into the grass and stared up at the expanse of blue sky overhead, his long, calloused fingers tangling in the brittle blades beneath. He closed his eyes and thought of colors, so many colors. He thought of a sharp, poignant azure that overlooked and oversaw everything not unlike Leaf’s eyes, and a deep sanguine that filled easily with both lust and sadness not far off from Red’s.

His own were as emerald as the field he lay in, a shade that normally meant envy.

His eyes shut tighter at the realization, as if that’d be enough to melt the color away, all the colors.

But at the corner of his vision, he still pictured a threadbare red sleeping bag that he’d passed time and time again, raven-hair shifting in chilled winds and rain. He never stopped, never asked how his rival was doing and just left him out there alone, over and over. He couldn’t take those moments back, couldn’t reverse those passes and change them to better them, as well as himself. Because he’d always just be the jealous bully next door, who couldn’t get what he wanted even though it was so close to him all along. 

Thousands of shades of the same sort of crimson stained his memory.
 
He fell asleep, too. But the images remained.
-x-
They all stirred and woke around evening, disturbed by the calls of gathering spearow and thundering footfalls on the paths nearby. Green woke last, the most reluctant to leave the protective haze of sleep.

Leaf stretched contently in the orange light of the dying sun, with all the afterglow of a long, refreshing nap. Pikachu joined shortly after and mimicked her in the best way he could. The two shared a bleary-eyed glance and then gazed at him, as if he knew what to do next.

“You know,” he said suddenly, “now that we slept all that time, we’re probably going to be awake all night.”

“Oh!” She got up immediately at that, and started to put the sticks, logs, and twigs together. “Time to build a fire, then! Let’s have a campfire chat! I brought stuff for s’mores.”

“How do you-”

“I’m a camper,” she reminded him again. “I always have stuff for s’mores.”

He still found it odd, and still wondered if the materials were fresh, but learned after today that it was probably best to hold his tongue after it had dug his grave multiple times today. He was already beyond six feet under at this point and decided not to go any deeper. He wouldn’t be able to breathe.

By the time the fire was safely brought to life, Pikachu had been forced to play pacifist nearly three times. The first time a spark landed on Green and he accused Leaf of purposely trying to set his pants on fire, which had her laughing and him utterly flustered. The second time, he’d nearly blown a gasket when all the smoke from the tiny fire flew straight into his face. Eventually, the pokemon resorted to lightly shocking them both to get them to simmer down.

Now they sat directly across the fire from each other in complete silence, the tension seemingly what kept the flame alive and burning.

Leaf cooled down first, comforted when Pikachu jumped into her lap. She patted him lightly on the head, fascinated by the fur on his pointed ears. She smiled softly as he drifted again to sleep, his sparse snores like static against her leg. She could sense both of the boys here missing the other, and sighed.

“You both really love Red, don’t you?” Her smile turned wistful, nostalgic. She laughed quietly, so as not to wake him. “No wonder you don’t get along.”

Green was thankful for the cover the fire provided as his face burned up. “Yeah, yeah. Whatever.”

“Ah! You finally don’t deny those feelings. How long has it been? Years? Have you told him?” Leaf looked eager, like she was preparing for storytime. She was undoubtedly a hopeless romantic, despite her flaky previous relationships. She shuffled closer to him, her eyes on the verge of sparkling.

“No, I haven’t. He doesn’t need words to talk.” He turned away.

She leered. “But you do. He’s waiting.”

“I wonder why we don’t get along,” he said, hoping to change the subject.

“Probably because I’m always right.” The sentence itself was smug, but brutally honest, and true. “Especially when it comes to you two. And I’m also a ton of fun, and you’re not. You’re just a grump.”

“I have plenty of fun.” He finally snagged her gaze.

“I mean beyond the bedroom.”

Green opened his mouth to say something but was interrupted again.

"Mt. Silver doesn't count, either."

He choked on the air. He admitted to admiring her honesty most of the time, but other moments he truly wished she’d just keep thoughts (especially the filthier ones) to herself. Even if, once again, she was right in her allegation. “I can be fun.”

“Prove it.”

“How?”

“I know! How about we have our own secret handshake.” She held out her hand, and he seemed amazed at how stealthily she had managed to move her seat to right beside him in the past five minutes, Pikachu still snoring away in her lap.

“Can we do something that requires less thought? Like hide and seek?”

“We used to love that game, didn’t we?” The tension in the air seemed to have dissipated at last. “Rock-paper-scissors. Whoever loses has to be It.” She held out her hand again, but in a fist.

And of course he lost. He usually did.
-x-
They did love that game. He and Red always used to pick the same hiding spot, and jump out and scare Leaf as she ran by them. Then while she cried, the future Champion kneeled in front of her and held out his hand in apology, or gave her a hug, and whispered things he couldn’t hear. The cries turned quickly to sobs, then to sniffles. His presence had a more soothing effect than hers did, and he knew she noticed it, that she adored him for it.

He wondered if that’s where he crossed the line of jealousy, of their friendship. All he knew is they certainly never followed him to that side, only watching him from a saddened distance as he abandoned them.

Maybe he deserved the loneliness that came with being the only kid to not camp out. The loneliness that lasted years and years until he finally climbed that mountain and came face-to-face with the cause of it. Though he still held back what he felt, thinking and taking Red’s silence to mean that he didn’t mean words.

But he supposed when it came to love, it needed to be in the air they breathed between them.

After Leaf whisked past him once more, he bolted. Not after her, but toward home, their home.

She stood behind with Pikachu and smiled. “Guess the plan worked, huh?”

He nodded.
-x-
Red was about to shut the door when he saw it was Green, but held back as his friend crouched over in the hall, completely out of breath.

“I just want to tell you something before I go back,” he whispered hoarsely.

His partner waited.

The Viridian leader leaned up and kissed him lightly, already too out of breath for anything more strenuous. “I love you.” And with that, he walked away and headed back to finish their game of hide and seek.

"I love you, too," he whispered in return, just loud enough for Green to hear. 
-x-
Leaf and Pikachu returned to their apartment first, vitalized and full of energy. As penalty of their game, Green had to pack up and bring all the bags himself.

“Did he say it?”

Red nodded.

“The plan worked! Great.” The young trainer laughed and threw out her hand toward him. “Finally, huh? I guess this makes us even now, right?”

As Green finally returned, he caught them in the middle of an extremely intricate handshake, Pikachu included. “What’s going on?” he asked, thoroughly exasperated. “What’s this plan?”

“I was the one who taught your friend here to talk,” Leaf said, not withholding a smirk.

The Gym Leader dropped all the bags in the hallway, fuming. It’d all been a plot.

He lunged forward suddenly, and caught one of Red’s wrists, dragging him out the door with him.

“Hey!” Leaf called. “Where are you going?”

“We’re going on a camping trip to get on more ‘agreeable terms.’”

Red struggled as he was dragged (somewhat) reluctantly down the stairs, but Green’s anger manifested as a death grip he couldn’t break free from. He looked back toward Pikachu, but the electric rat only turned away.

She observed what he’d left behind with askance, and concern. “But you only grabbed one sleeping bag!”

“It’s all we’ll need.”

She grinned. “Then you still owe me, Red! I don’t get added bonuses for you for free!”

He only gulped as Green held the boy in his arms and carried him off to the woods.

please stay
Comments 
25th-Aug-2010 01:52 pm (UTC)
I really liked this. I was really surprised by the twist ending—it made me laugh! I loved your usage of colors (I've had similar thoughts myself /high five) and the way you continually went back to the image of camping and gave it many angles. After finishing your fic, I went back and read the prompt, and I think you really used it spectacularly. I could see where you plucked out all your various themes and thoughts, and it was really interesting.

Your prose is occassionally really, really flowery, and it makes it sort of hard to read, though. In particular, "break in skin" really caught my eye; it's awkward there. If you were worried about repetition, you could switch up. Instead of the order of words being "wound" then "cut" twice, it can be "cut," then "wound," then "cut." If that made no sense, let me know and I'll try to explain it again more clearly--I know that sucked.

"She may have wanted to touch the lives of millions – and probably would – but he just wanted to touch one. " -- This line really moved me.

"He slowly leaned into the grass and stared up at the expanse of blue sky overhead, his long, calloused fingers tangling in the brittle blades beneath. He closed his eyes and thought of colors, so many colors. He thought of a sharp, poignant azure that overlooked and oversaw everything not unlike Leaf’s eyes, and a deep sanguine that filled easily with both lust and sadness not far off from Red’s.

His own were as emerald as the field he lay in, a shade that normally meant envy.

His eyes shut tighter at the realization, as if that’d be enough to melt the color away, all the colors." -- this was...a little thick. I think this is the part that was the worst out of all of it? You use a TON of adjectives and you use a lot of REALLY flowery words (emerald is probably the biggest one here). If I were editing it, it might go something like this:

"He leaned back and stared at the blue sky, his long, calloused fingers tangling in the grass. He closed his eyes and thought of colors, so many colors. He thought of Leaf's eyes, a sharp, ["poignant" <-why did you choose to use this word?] blue that [overlooked and oversaw <- what are you trying to say here? That she sees and forgives everything? Or something else?] everything, and Red's, a deep sanguine that filled easily with both lust and sadness.

His own eyes were as green as the field he lay in, a shade that normally meant envy.

His eyes shut tighter at the realization, as if that’d be enough to melt the colors away."

Basically anywhere you use a really fancy word, you have to think about the words around it. Too many beautiful words close together just chokes the person who's reading it and makes each individual word shine less. They're like...sparkles. Too much sparkle is blinding.

Okay, enough concrit. I really did like this fic. It was touching to see so many sides to the trio's relationship, and I am a huge sucker for a deep and meaningful Green character analysis. When he bolted for home at the end, I got warm fuzzy feelings.

Thanks for writing it, and I'm sure your person will love it! ♥
26th-Aug-2010 02:41 am (UTC)
Yeah. I apologize about the purple prose that is this fic. ;----; It's definitely not my best. I feel like I reverted to some seriously old writing style in this... The style reminiscent of like my freshman year of high school where I thought bigger words were better. I don't even know. xD I tried to fix it so many times, but I couldn't even figure out where to start with it. I even considered just redoing the entire thing at one point, but I procrasinated and didn't have time to do that...

I probably should've just started this earlier so I'd have more than just under a week to edit it.

I'm glad you liked it, though! I'm glad you thought it matched the prompt, too, because I was really worried about that. xD The colors of their eyes / names always seemed like they had to have some sort of significance.

I know what you mean! Haha. I was concerned I would be repeating myself too much, since I sometimes have the tendency to do that.

Thanks for all the help with this! I'm definitely going to just sit down in a few days when I have a couple of hours of free time and try to simplify the vocabulary here. It needs some serious work.

Thanks again for the help and review!
29th-Aug-2010 07:03 am (UTC)
Oh my god. Oh my god.

/20 minutes later

Okay, I'm done spazzing. This was so well written, thank you very much. I love the idea of Leaf being the person who managed to get Red to talk, haha. ♥ I enjoyed this very very much and you fulfilled it well. Thank you thank you thank you.
31st-Aug-2010 03:24 pm (UTC)
Thank you! I'm glad you liked it! ♥
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