I have a dark side when it comes to characters. This one-shot is the first of quite a few in the saga it takes place in that I'm considering as the beginning of a small project.

A/N: I really don't have much else to say, other than the fact that I did have 3 other titles before settling on this one. I only own OCs, certain locations and the storyline.

Keep in mind: that this is a "past tense" one-shot. While some of the characters didn't exist in this time frame, I'm just using them for plot purposes and if you're unsure when you see the date, I'll say so now. The characters that didn't exist at the time of this one shot (keep in mind that not all of them are in this one-shot. ...and I'm just saying the protagonist options [for both genders], rivals and a few anime characters) are: Dawn, Lyra, Hilda, Rosa, Serena, Moon (which is not my official name for her, as you will see in the two-shot "The Day After"), Lucas, Ethan (technically), Hilbert, Nate, Calem, Sun (same as Moon), Barry, Silver (to be clear, I am talking games Silver, not manga Silver. Also, see Ethan), Bianca, Cheren, Shauna, Tierno, Trevor, Hau and Gladion. Hm. I'm getting pretty lengthy, so, here's the deal. I'll give you the rating and reason and talk about "technically" and why I say that in the end A/N.

Rating and reason: T for blood, language, violence, madness and the possibility of the fourth wall being broken.

One Last Ride

(June 29, 2007) (Other title ideas I considered: The Crash of a Lifetime, Let's Take Two Cars and C'mon, I'll Race You Home!)

A couples' marathon. That was the event being held in Johto. The marathon started at Garden Avenue in Whiterose City and would end on the track in the Pokéathlon Dome where marked. It was the seventh annual marathon and it was the third that couples would partake in. Of course, Johto's own Master Circuit contender Jimmy Kenta was expected by many to make an appearance along with Pokémon Idol Marina Davis. Ethan Aurum was also expected to show up with girlfriend Kris Chadwick. Rumors were speculating that Kenta's best male friend and fellow Master Circuit contender Ash Ketchum would show up with his girlfriend Misty Waterflower. "Ash, Misty!" Ash may have the power of aura, but he could never expect the ambush hugs he got from Marina if she had eaten either a good deal of sugar or was in a really good mood. He could tell the difference on which it was and considering he had been knocked down, it was the former. *

"At least it's soft grass here in Whiterose," Jimmy said after signing an autograph. He helped Ash up into a bro hug while Marina squeezed Misty. Hard. "So, whaddya think of the place?" he asked the couple.

Ash was looking around, as was Misty. "It's a beautiful place, I'll give it that," said a typically bored voice.

"...and that should be a compliment in it of itself, coming from you," Misty said in a slightly teasing tone. She would've gone to greet him, but she then realized that Marina hadn't ended the hug. He saw this, smirked slightly and beat Jimmy to the punch of prying Marina off.

Misty thanked him and wondered why neither contender offered to help her, but she soon realized why. Some reporters had discovered that Ash had arrived and Jimmy (having already spoken to them) was trying to save his friend from the gossip. "Damn paparazzi. There will be a good deal of fan screams once they realize who else is here," he said before glancing at the teal-haired girl.

"Silver," she began before realizing who he meant. "where is she?"

Silver shrugged and replied, "Last I checked, they too had been attacked by the paparazzi," but before he could finish, Marina had already taken off. Misty almost felt compelled to go after her, but she didn't.

"Man. Marina and Dawn must be pretty close," Misty mused.

Silver rolled his eyes. "I guess you could say that, but Paul said it'd take him and Dawn another thirty minutes to get here," he said. "Last I checked, Rosa, Nate, Calem and Serena were on their way, too. If she didn't run off, I would've finished."

"Well no one's stopping you now," Misty said as a ball on her belt wiggled open.

The red light died down and before anyone could speak, a new voice entered their vicinity, "Psyduck, the Duck Pokémon. Psyduck suffers frequent headaches and can exhibit mysterious when they become especially intense. Hm. It's been a while since I've seen a Psyduck."

"Says the walking Pokédex," Silver replied sarcastically. "Also, aren't you supposed to be answering to the press?" **

Not wearing what he had been last seen in, it was a new look for him. He still had on gray shorts, but instead of the charcoal gray he wore some time ago, his were a navy blue on the top with a lighter blue on the bottom half. He no longer wore a biker's T-shirt (well, except when he was on his Acro bike), but rather a sleeveless one that was also two shades, but a charcoal gray on the left and a steel gray on the right. He wore dark green tennis shoes with white laces, his Mega Bracelet was still on his left wrist and his hair was still short. His voice had grown deeper as well. This was none other than Brendan Birch.

"Actually, I think Max even beats me. ...except on Alola. I've been there, he hasn't," had been the white-haired boy's retort. Psyduck reminded the trainers that he was still out there …and aware of what was going on, apparently because Psyduck began frantically chanting his name to the Hoennian boy. Brendan just nodded and squatted to see Psyduck up close.

Ash and Jimmy finally arrived over. "Oh my gosh, it's the Brendan Birch~" a girl fawned, thus alerting some nearby reporter.

After all the contenders had been "interviewed" by the press, it was time for the marathon to start. Paul, Silver and Calem were the only ones who were wearing long sleeves on the top. Jimmy had long ditched his red jacket, revealing an orange T-shirt and navy-blue shorts with white tennis shoes and he was wearing his black and cadet blue hat. Marina had a cream headband on (in place of her beanie), a light pink top with short (but not too exposing) white shorts and white and pink tennis shoes.

Nate wore a red, sleeveless T-shirt with a gray vertical stripe and red tennis shoes with black laces. Rosa wore a baby blue tank top with light yellow shorts and a pair of black tennis shoes with light pink laces. Both had on their new visors. Nate's was off-white and Rosa's was a light pink.

Paul no longer wore the same jacket he used to, but rather a dark gray one and a pair of denim blue shorts. Dawn wore a bubblegum pink T-shirt, her red scarf, a pink skort, and a pair of light red tennis shoes.

Ash was wearing a yellow T-shirt with an electric blue zigzag pattern across the midsection, his new hat (a red hat with a Poké Ball [that was a light gray in color] on it), a pair of black shorts and tennis shoes that were green with black laces. Pikachu was on his trainer's shoulder. Misty now wore a similar sleeveless hoodie to the one she wore when she was younger. It was a baby blue in color with a pair of darker blue shorts that had a purple trainer belt, black and white tennis shoes with light blue laces and she had her hair cut and it was now short. ***

Silver was wearing a dark green jacket with a pair of blue-gray cargo shorts and a pair of navy blue tennis shoes with black laces. Lyra had long stopped wearing her hat and wore: an off-white shirt with a map of Johto on it, a pair of denim blue capris and a pair of white tennis shoes with light pink laces.

Calem wore a long-sleeved white shirt with a vertical, blue stripe on either arm and a silver zipper could be seen on it. He wore red shorts and apparently, similar hiking boots to those he wore at the beginning of his journey, but with lemon yellow laces and they were a dark enough gray that they could pass borderline dark gray and black. "It's a quarter jacket," was what he had told the interviewers and his girlfriend. Serena had her hair a little shorter than her original style; maybe about two inches. Like Calem (in terms of the tops they had on) Serena wore a pink top (maybe a little lighter than magenta in color) with light red ochre stripes where Calem had blue. She wore off-white shorts with red stripes on either side and black tennis shoes. ****

The time came for the participants to line up. Runners were told apart by the color of the number he or she was wearing. The number 12 could be seen on Ash's shirt and it was in black ink as opposed to the 45 on Brendan's. Brendan's girlfriend (Brianna Wakana) was unable to make it, as she was still recovering from a mild illness. If you asked Brendan how he felt about it, he felt it wouldn't make a difference. "As a reminder: couples are required to have at the maximum 12 feet in between them," an announcer said. "If a couple doesn't cross the finish line with the distance I just stated at its max in between them, they do not finish first. There are three places and three prizes for both divisions. In the singles' division, there is the third-place prize of 1,000 Pokédollars. The second-place prize is 3,000 Pokédollars and the first-place prize is 5,000 Pokédollars. In the couples' division, the third-place prize is 5,000 Pokédollars. Second place is 10,000 Pokédollars and first place is 15,000 Pokédollars. Now, onto the course," and as he said that, a few participants stopped listening; mostly because they had run the race before.

Jimmy fell into that category because he knew the area well enough. Brendan stopped listening because when given a map, he had a scary good memory. Few people questioned it. At the sound of the gun, the racers were off.


Brendan, Calem and Serena had run at about the same pace, but the Hoenn native had gotten ahead of them. Serena just shook her head as she watched Calem try to match Brendan's pace.

(Calem and Serena)

Calem and Serena were inches apart. To keep each other going, they spoke in Kalosian.

(Silver and Lyra)

"Doin' okay, there, Lyra?" Silver hollered, knowing she was behind him.

The brunette blinked. Silver rarely talked when he was deeply focused in something. If that something was competitive, the focus was even more intense. "Just fine," was her reply. "Any ideas who will get there first?"

Silver gave a deep sigh. "With Ash and Jimmy, it's hard to say. It'll be close, but if neither one of them is there when I get there, I am not going to be happy," he said and Lyra understood. Fair enough, if you asked her.

(Misty and Marina)

The two weren't that far ahead of Silver and Lyra. Both weren't too far from their boyfriends, either. "Uh oh," Misty said and Marina looked up.

"Boy, they're really in the mood to run today. They gotta finish with us," Marina said. Misty nodded. Both boys had left their sight.

(Ash and Jimmy)

The lead kept alternating. "So, Ash," Jimmy began. "what are you going to do with that money if you win it?"

"I have to split some of it with Misty... unless she gets that same amount herself, but I highly doubt that. Otherwise, I'm stocking up."

Jimmy nodded. "I'm in the same boat, man," he said. It was quiet between the two for a little bit before the navy blue haired trainer spoke again. "Where do you want to go for the month?"

Ash had to think as to what his friend was talking about. "Pikachu. Cha, pikachu," Pikachu chirped from Ash's shoulder. Jimmy noticed Pikachu's cheeks sparking but waited for the Electric-type to finish and Ash's translation. Jimmy caught sight of Ash clenching his fists.

"Don't know. Anywhere but the mountains in Kanto," the black-haired trainer said, suddenly ticked.

Jimmy knew something was up with his friend but didn't push it.

(Nate and Rosa)

The duo were with a few other racers, but Nate and Rosa were more focused on each other than their competitors. Nate looked over his shoulder and was surprised to make eye contact. He looked back at Rosa. "Well, we've got more company," he said.

(Paul and Dawn)

The Sinnohans were catching up. It was only in the timing that would decide the winners of the marathon. They weren't too far from the Unova duo.

(Pokéathlon Dome)

Brendan couldn't believe it. He wasn't going to be coming home with first prize, but second worked just as well for him. He crossed the finish line. Now came the idea of waiting for his friends. So, he got some water and waited. Ash and Misty were the first two he saw, but he also saw Jimmy and Marina. Jimmy crossed the line first. Except, "it'll be a close finish!" he realized.

Ash crossed the line soon after but realized that Misty and Marina weren't as close as either contender thought. "C'mon Mari!" Jimmy hollered, "we're representing the home region here!"

Ash rolled his eyes. So were several other Johtoans. "Almost there, Misty!" was Ash's encouragement. Both females increased their speed, but it was Misty who crossed the line first, holding Ash's hand after doing so. Once the race was over, the announcer smiled. "In the singles' division for third place, we have Roz Tallier from Rustboro City, Hoenn. Second place, we have Brendan Birch from Littleroot Town and in first place, we have Yuki Dallarosia from Snowpoint City in the Sinnoh region!"

There was a roar of applause. Once that settled down, the couples' division winners were announced. "In third place, we have Nate Werner and Rosa Gilchrist from the Unova region!" Pictures of the couple were being taken out the wazoo. The announcer cleared their throat before speaking again. "In the race's history, this is the closest we have. If you'll take a look at the monitor behind you, you can see the inscription 'Johto Photo Finish' and we have a clip of the winning moment," and the crowd turned to the Jumbotron. They watched as Ash and Jimmy motivated their girlfriends and Misty getting the slight advantage in speed. It was a close call, but the winning shot was of Misty crossing the line a hair of a second before Marina. "Ergo, by a close margin, our second-place winners are New Bark's own Marina Davis and Jimmy Kenta," the announcer said and then watching the medals being given to Ash and Misty. "and our respective winners Ash Ketchum and Misty Waterflower hail from Pallet Town and Cerulean City!" Ash and Misty shared their victory pose with Pikachu joining in from Ash's shoulder. *****

Jimmy called his mom and was surprised to find out where she was. "Oh yeah," Ash said. "that would make sense."

Jimmy nodded. "Silver's mom is there, too," Jimmy said and it was agreed that the contenders would celebrate the next day together. Silver, Misty, Marina, Jimmy, Ash and Lyra were all going to the Ketchum residence. Silver drove a navy-blue car and he said he'd follow Ash or Jimmy. It was decided that the others would go in Ash's car.

Pikachu (whenever Ash was driving or they were going somewhere via car) got off his trainer's shoulder. Ash nodded and got the Poké Ball off his belt, enlarged it and said, "Okay Pikachu. You can return for now and I'll let you out as soon as we're home." Pikachu nodded as his ears twitched in agreement and he was absorbed by the red beam. Ash then proceeded to fish his car keys out of his pocket. Silver was already waiting by his navy-blue car and watched as the others went to Ash's car. Ash was the driver. Jimmy was riding shotgun and Misty and Marina sat behind their respective boyfriends.

(The ride home)

Ash began the drive after setting the coordinates up in his GPS and made sure that Silver was behind him. All they had to do was make a right, then a left and then get onto the I-101 that connected Kanto and Johto. "Hey Ash," Marina began and he gave her a brief glance in the rearview. "has Silver ever met your mom?"

He had to think about that. He remembered introducing the fellow competitors and his top trainers to his parents, but Silver? "I don't think so," was his reply. Just then, a Pokégear started ringing. It was Misty's.

"Speaking of Silver," she said before answering it. "hey. What's up?"

She had to have her hair back up during the race, but she took it down once she was in the car with Ash and the others. She had to push some of it back so she could hear Silver easier. "It's actually a breezy night. It's supposed to rain, but I think we'll be in Pallet by then," came his reply. "Save some gas on the A/C and roll down the windows. It'll be easier if I can't see Ash or vice versa."

That made sense, so Misty thanked him and relayed the message. Ash was fine with that. The windows were rolled down. "Silvy's right," Marina mused. "it is breezy tonight."

That was agreeable. The gentle wind and relaxed mood were enough to have the trainers in a peaceful state of mind for the ride. That is until there was a series of horns honking and that began to faze Ash, only slightly until


All 4 passengers felt the car go forward. 'Dammit!' Ash thought to himself, gritting his teeth. What would cause Silver to hit him like that? Once the glass stopped flying, Ash realized he would likely damage his eyes if he opened them. He used his aura to find the source. A car had crossed over from the other side of the highway directly between his and Silver's cars. As far as Ash's aura could tell, Silver and Lyra were alive. So was everyone else in the car.

"Ash?" Misty called worriedly.

Ash gave a grunt. "We've been T-boned!" was his response.

"Jimmy/Mari?" the Johtoans called simultaneously and Jimmy made himself wince. "Ugh," he said. "I think," he trailed.

Ash could sense his friend's distress. "Jimmy, you've got a stray shard of glass near your mouth. Mist, Marina, can either of you get out of the car and check on Silver and Lyra?"

Misty tried to open her door but to no avail! "I'll do it," Marina said carefully and she did so. She got to Silver's car. Shattered windshield. She looked at Lyra's window, which was only open halfway. Lyra was shaking and Silver looked to be bracing himself. "Great. Just great," he sarcastically snapped. "Dumbass drivers. Too many of them."

Marina made them aware of her presence. "I'll do it," Lyra said. "I can get to my gear faster," she said. Once Lyra had made the call to 911, it was all a matter of waiting. She realized that it had started raining over here already. Once she got back into the shelter of Ash's car, she felt herself getting lightheaded, but she was caught.

Misty looked up to see that a part of the back windshield had been cracked. "Silver," she hollered before asking if Lyra was still making the call. He looked up. "If Lyra hasn't already hung up, have her tell the operator that Marina just fainted and I barely caught her!"

Silver nodded and managed to relay the information. All they could do was wait. Wait for the ambulance. "Silver," Lyra said in a scared tone. He looked at her. "You've got glass shards in a lot of places." He looked at his right hand and at her left one. He didn't care if it made the pain worsen, he had to do something. He lightly gripped her hand.

(Ash's car)

"Marina!" Jimmy called. Ash finally opened his eyes and looked back to see the coordinator being held up (barely) by Misty.

Ash put his hand on Jimmy's shoulder, where there hadn't been any glass that he could see. Once he touched it, he winced. He also saw more glass in Jimmy's legs. "Jimmy, she's out cold," Misty said, taking the words out of Ash's mouth.

Jimmy wanted to scream, but clenched his fist instead. "No," he said, as if in denial. Ash felt his aura surge like electricity. He may not have been in training for long, but he knew that it wasn't a good thing. Before attempting to free himself, the black-haired boy looked at his own legs to see one bent slightly. Something wasn't right.

"Ashton Ketchum," Misty hissed. "don't you dare!"

He had successfully (after playing with the lock on his door) been able to open it. He ignored her and got out of the car. As soon as he did so, a searing pain went through his left leg. 'Fuck,' he thought. "Mist, I have to. I won't feel better until I go see myself." He didn't get a reply, but noticed she had glass shards (though considerably smaller than some of the ones he and Jimmy had) in her upper body and he could see a bruise starting to form on her neck.

With a painful limp, Ash made his way to check on Silver and Lyra. He could hear Silver faintly whisper.

(Silver's car)

"Lyra? You're tired aren't you?" the redhead asked as he watched her eyes droop.

She let out a moan in pain and Silver frantically began to unbuckle her. It was a moment like this where Silver was thankful he carried his pocket knife. "Silver," Lyra whined. Ash saw this. "Make the tightness go away."

Ash didn't know CPR. He knew how to do some minor healing with his aura, but that wouldn't be enough. "Need any help?" he offered and Silver grunted in reply.

He just watched as Silver effortlessly revealed the blade of his knife and began sawing carefully. Ash didn't watch, for he felt something was wet on his legs. It had started to rain on his way out of the car, but that wasn't the cause. His left leg (which was also the leg that had been bent) was bleeding considerably. "Fuck!" Silver swore. Ash looked up and noticed how pale Lyra looked. He wasn't sure about calling 911 again.

(Ash's car)

"Misty, I can't," Jimmy said. "I can't tell you if you're imagining things or not. But please tell the paramedics about the pain in your head."

Misty nodded. It was like a terrible headache, but worse. "Yeah. If they ever get here," she said bitterly. None of the passengers in Ash's car (not even Ash) knew when Silver placed the call. Then again, there was the inclement weather. Misty just knew she wanted her boyfriend back in the car ASAP!

Jimmy wanted to turn his head ...'you know what? I'm going to the hospital. Screw it,' he thought as he turned his upper body so he could see his girlfriend. "I hope they get here soon. Mari should be the first one to go with the paramedics."

Misty couldn't believe what she just heard. Jimmy was wonderfully sweet (like Ash) and put others before himself, but really? Misty decided to see if she could unbuckle. "Try and unbuckle if you can, Jimmy. On a more serious note, are you crazy?!" Jimmy's blue eyes looked into Misty's seafoam ones. He was about to say something, but she wasn't done. "You and Ash are bleeding profusely! I mean, Silver and Lyra probably are as well, ...and Marina has a little bit of a cut, but I'm not going to try and mess with the glass shard where it is. If anyone should go first with the paramedics, it's gonna be either you or Ash."

Jimmy's mouth was left slightly agape in shock. "I... yeah. You're right. It's just that when many years ago, even before I was a trainer, Marina's parents had Vincent and I promise that we'd take care of Marina when we started traveling," he began. He shook his head. "We all met at the lab. I was so determined to find the trainer that had started his journey a few months before we started ours. Professor Elm didn't know much, but he explained that that was the first time a shiny starter had been given to him." With that, he began to try and unbuckle.

(Silver's car)

Silver placed his hand on Lyra's wrist after finally slicing the seatbelt. Ash just watched in silence. Silver finally looked at Ash. "She's still with us. I don't know if she's just dehydrated, asleep or unconscious," he said. Ash nodded. "I really hope the medics arrive soon."

Ash rifled a hand through his hair and stopped as he found something sharp just barely grazing his head. Not caring at this point, he plucked the glass shard from his head and with the other hand, felt for any blood. There was a minimal amount and Silver shook his head. "I think Jimmy or I will go first. We're both cut up pretty badly," he confessed and Silver took his eyes off of his girlfriend to look at the Kantoan. What astonished him was that he was trying to be optimistic, even in this situation.

Before his eyes landed on Ash, though, Silver noticed that glass shards had scraped his legs. He finally looked at Ash. Ash was bleeding profusely. "Dammit, Ash," Silver swore. "You're right." Silver had to think of his encounters with Jimmy when they were younger before they became friends. "Watch Lyra for a little bit. I want to see how he and Marina are for myself." Ash stepped out of the way, not even processing Silver's words until the redhead was out of the car.

As Silver cautiously walked to Ash's car, Ash noticed Lyra stir. He kept his eyes locked on her.

(Ash's car)

"Yeah, that's what I thought," Silver said, catching Misty and Jimmy off guard. He noticed how Marina was positioned and Misty quickly explained what happened.

Jimmy was gritting his teeth. "This is like a nightmare," he said.

"Tch," Silver snapped. "I think you, Ash and I look like something from a horror movie. ...so does this scene. Why haven't either of you unbuckled?"

Misty and Jimmy exchanged glances. Misty tried to free herself and was able to. Jimmy kept struggling. He wiggled the seatbelt and the clicker. He then realized something by looking down. It was jammed. 'Shit,' he swore mentally. Marina wasn't fond of deliberate swearing from him.

"Silver," Ash's voice interrupted the scene. "it's Lyra. Come on!" Silver didn't need to be told twice.

(Silver's car)

Silver watched Lyra wake up briefly before closing her eyes again. "I don't think she's blinking," the black-haired boy said.

"Lyra," Silver called.

To the surprise of both boys, Lyra said Silver's name before being rendered speechless. There was a roll of thunder. Chocolate brown met piercing red. No words were spoken because both knew what to do. Ash placed his hand on Silver's shoulder. Silver was like a stone and Ash cracked a small smile. "There. Now I can track you with my aura. I focused my range." Silver nodded in understanding.

(Ash's car)

Ash carefully made his way back to his car before slipping onto the ground, slicing his other knee open. That didn't stop him. 'If you don't get up after you fall, you won't learn anything,' someone had told him. Ash gritted his teeth and reached his arm to the rear end (or whatever was left of it) of his car to push himself up until he could limp back to his car. He slowly got in, closing the door. Lyra and Marina were unconscious, all of them were bleeding, it was drizzling mildly. ...it couldn't get worse, right?

There's a connecting shot to this. It's up to you if you interpret it as a cliffhanger. This is the first part of my series called "A Crash Can Change Many Lives" and I'll explain why in the third installment. Well, why I'm doing this. How about I do the rundown and see you at the end A/N? Great.

(*) Chadwick is an unofficial surname for Kris. I am experimenting with it. Part two: while I feel aura to be like a literal sixth sense, I feel like it can't even detect ambushes. Well, not for someone at Ash's level, anyway.

(**) Silver is referring to Yuki, but he doesn't know her name off the top of his head.

(***) Regardless of the story, Brendan is a bit of a bookworm, but he's Professor Birch's son. What do you expect? Also, while I'm not too fond of Brendan's ORAS design, I had to use it as a base for the rest of his attire. If you get any of the color references, let me know. Part two: the zigzag pattern in Ash's attire that I'm referring to can be found in the original series of the anime. In the episode where the Indigo League is about to start, Ash is wearing a different T-shirt in the fact that the shirt is white and the zigzag is orange.

(****) By quarter jacket, Calem means that the top portion of the jacket is the only portion to have a zipper. I think that that type of jacket is called a jacket with only ¼ to zip and unzip.

(*****) What Roz and Yuki look like can be found on my profile.

End A/N: I'm doing this series as a whole to those of who (reading this) know that there's someone out on FFN who can relate to losing a loved one in a car crash.

Until the next upload (which might be sooner than I think), r and r, fave and follow (if you want), vote and ask. Ciao.


PS I'll come back on this once I'm done enough with the series so I can go back on each point in the rundown and expand where I intended to.

Date and time of revision: July 8, 2017 2:34pm Eastern Standard Time

What was revised: I added some more dialogue to make this a little longer and went a little more in depth on some of the attire.