Author's Note: I wrote chapters 1-3 a couple of years ago before I ended up stopping. I didn't think it was good enough for people to want to read it, but now I'm just saying "what the heck" and I'm uploading it anyway. Also chapter 4 is coming.
Here are a few notes before you start.
I decided that the plurals of some Pokemon names have an "s" at the end of them (for example the plural of Eevee would be Eevees), unlike what it appears to be in canon. However, some Pokémon names, such as Zangoose, don't have an "s" in plural form. This is just my style of writing Pokémon names, and it depends on what looks and sounds right to me. Sorry if it doesn't agree with you.
Haku and Neru are both currently 16 years old in the story. Neru is slightly older than Haku, by twenty days. They might end up aging though, if the story does get that far. They won't be like Ash Ketchum who's forever 10 years old for some reason.
Attack names are in lowercase. It makes more sense to me.
The way Haku met Snowbell is inspired by my very old fanfiction about Haku and a cat, True Friendship.
Snowbell is not a shiny Eevee! She's albino, which is different. Albino Pokémon may not yet exist in any official media, but I like to imagine it's possible.
The month this story starts in is May.
"Oh... it was just a dream."
Haku Yowane was from a town where the sunlight was weak.
It was good for her sensitive skin, however. It never burned in the sun, which was blocked by the thick haze of volcanic ash lingering in the air. It wasn't good for the young girl's lungs, however.
Haku Yowane was born and raised in this town; a small and quietly quaint farmland town near a volcano. Nothing significant ever happened there, and the people rarely lingered beyond the border. Most of the people in town knew each other. But not Haku, who always hid in her house. She was too shy and timid to leave her little home, and had been homeschooled, as there was no public school in Fallarbor town.
Then came the day her mother said...
"Haku, don't you think you should get out more often, in order to make friends and learn about the world around you?"
Haku was to tired to respond. She had just woken up in her bed (which was her safe haven), was still under the covers. She had slept in until noon. Haku's mother closed the door after a few seconds and went back downstairs, sighing.
Haku felt a pang of regret.
It wasn't like she didn't want to go out and see the world. In fact, it was her quiet dream to go on an adventure somewhere. But in reality, she was just too scared of the possibilities. The world was just so big. Being sheltered, she just thought she wasn't ready. Not even to just go to the neighbors' house and say hello.
Even though she had dreams about finally overcoming her fears and setting out on an adventure, the moment she woke up, her courage felt so far away again.
Haku slowly got up from bed and looked in the mirror. There was a tall, lanky girl with milky white hair, snow-kissed eyelashes and eyebrows, who was growing up too fast. Off-white skin, and starkly contrasting scarlet eyes. Some people would say Haku Yowane looked like a ghost. She really was just a lonely girl with albinism.
Being albino was the root of her shyness. Ever since she was a certain age, she was always afraid to go outside in case somebody would mention something about her skin, paler than the volcanic ash that choked the air, or her ghostly hair, or even her scary eyes.
At least in a place like Fallarbor Town, she couldn't get a sunburn.
After lazily tying her long hair into a messy low ponytail, the shy girl hobbled down the stairs, daydreaming.
"Honey, could you go to the grocery store for me? We need food ingredients."
Before going out, Haku made sure to bring her Eevee. It was strange, but Snowbell didn't like being in a Poké Ball. It was probably because she liked being able to feel Haku with her.
Snowbell was an odd Eevee, and Haku's best friend. Just like Haku, Snowbell was albino, with all-white fur, and almost colorless light blue pupils.
Haku could recall the cold day she met Snowbell.
Haku's life had been rather upsetting and lonely. This day had been especially bad. Haku wanted to disappear for a while, to be one with the ash that fell from the sky. Nobody paid any attention to it. Haku wanted to be gone, at least just for a little while...
She went to the cool, thick woods where nobody hung around. So silent, it was practically a sound in itself. Nothing but nature, serenity, and whatever thoughts you decided to bring.
It was like running away for a while, to her secret spot. A small clearing in the woods with a mysterious bench that nobody but her seemed to use. A place where nobody could see her tears, where it was quiet, and where nothing mattered.
Haku had never seen snow before, but she liked pretending the dry gray ash all around her was a winter wonderland of sorts, but without the feeling of chills or frostbite.
While she was lost in the gray sky of thoughts, a nearby bush began to rustle.
Haku was startled and began to think the worst. She was afraid of Pokémon at the time. Was a scary one going to attack? Or even worse, was a person going to disrupt her peace? Haku braced herself and grabbed her backpack, just in case she had to flee.
Instead, a small white Pokémon, looking almost like a moving ball of snow, wobbled out weakly. Upon inspection, with a noticeable limp and dark blood staining one side of its snowy pelt, it was badly wounded, and had been that way for a while.
Right in front of Haku, it then collapsed. It was as if it had used the last of its energy to crawl out of the bushes so that Haku could see it. This Pokémon was putting its trust into Haku to save its life.
Haku felt something inside of her break, as if someone had dropped it... It was her first time seeing something so sad, something so helpless and hurt to what was seemingly beyond repair.
"What should I do?" Haku thought, kneeling to the Pokémon. It was in pain, breathing heavily, and the wound looked even more severe up close. "I'm so far from the Pokémon Center..."
On top of it all, Haku was scared of Pokémon. Her mom didn't like Pokémon either. But this one... it needed her help.
Haku quickly took her jacket and covered the wound, preventing it from bleeding any more. Her jacket was to be covered in blood, but Haku didn't care, even if her mom were to get mad. Haku wanted as much as she possibly could to help the Pokémon. But was it going to be enough?
"Don't worry..." Haku muttered through tears and panic.
The Pokémon Center was going to handle the rest. Haku ran as fast as she could the entire way.
By the time she got to the Pokémon center, the girl, completely winded, legs with scratches and scrapes from the bushes and falling down, carrying an injured Pokémon, burst through the door on the verge of tears.
"Please... help this Pokémon. Please tell me it isn't too late..."
It was a nerve-wracking wait, but in a couple of hours, the nurses confirmed that the Pokémon was going to be fine.
Haku did come home late that day, and her mother understood.
"It's really good that you saved that Pokémon's life. I'm proud of you."
"Really?" Haku said.
Eventually, Haku found out what kind of Pokémon it was.
"I was surprised too." The nurse said. "It appears to be an Eevee, a rare Pokémon to be found in the Hoenn region."
"But... Eevees are brown..." Haku muttered.
"Not all the time. They come in other colors, though it's rare. This particular one seems to be albino." The nurse said.
Haku suddenly felt a connection to the Pokémon she saved. Maybe there was a reason it had happened. Maybe it was like they were connected. That's what Haku felt when she visited the Eevee while it was recovering.
Eventually, the Eevee had fully recovered, and Haku got to see it one last time. The Pokémon that was once faint and severely injured was now buoyant and full of life. It brought tears to Haku's eyes. It was like a miracle...
"I guess it's time to say goodbye now..." Haku said tearfully, thinking of releasing it into the wild where it belonged. After all, her mother didn't really like Pokémon, and never let her keep one.
But to Haku's surprise, the Eevee looked at her in a way where it didn't want to go. It jumped up into Haku's arms and began to lick her face.
"Eev!" It squeaked.
"Haku, I think it wants to be yours." Her mother said.
Haku wiped the tears from her eyes, not believing her ears.
"Really?" She said.
"Eev! Eev!" The Pokémon seemed to be filled with gratitude.
From then on, Haku and Snowbell had been inseparable.
Snowbell was a curious Eevee who loved to explore, be it the house, or any new place. Haku felt safer when she was with Snowbell. She wished she were a little braver so she could explore with Snowbell.
As Haku petted the Eevee, it began to purr.
"We're going to the grocery store, okay Snowbell?" Haku said.
"Eev!" The Eevee squeaked in understanding and began to follow Haku on its stubby paws.
Haku still felt a little uncomfortable going around town, so she wore a light periwinkle hoodie and long jeans that covered a lot of her body. She dressed in such a way because she was shy. Snowbell followed Haku around loyally.
The grocery store was a few blocks away. Haku pulled out the shopping list her mother gave her and looked through it.
"Lettuce, carrots, toothpaste, Pokémon food for Snowbell..."
As Haku shopped, she would talk to Snowbell about things as she put cans in the shopping cart and walked down the aisles. Haku knew she was always listening.
"Snowbell, I'm sorry I'm so scared. To go on an adventure, I mean. Lately, I've really been thinking about it... I mean, what's stopping me? I'm sixteen years old! I could've been doing this since I was a ten. Why am I such a coward..."
"Vee?" Snowbell rubbed her face against Haku's ankle, and then looked at her with shining eyes.
Almost if Snowbell was telling Haku she could do it.
"Thank you, Snowbell..." Haku said. "I'll... I'll do it someday."
Haku perked up and lovingly lifted the soft white Eevee into the small seat of the shopping cart so she didn't have to walk.
"Maybe not today... but one day, I'll show the world I'm strong..."
When Haku got to the aisle of Pokémon products, she spotted a girl who looked like she'd been on all sorts of adventure. The exact opposite of her. Was she adventuring throughout the region and stopped in Haku's little town to get supplies for her journey? It seemed so exciting. Haku wondered how far from home she happened to be...
Her outfit was slightly torn, and had noticeably been though a lot. Her blonde hair had been tied into a high ponytail, a functional, adventurous hairstyle.
Haku suddenly felt a pang of longing in her heart.
The brand of Pokémon food Haku bought was right where the girl was, so she shyly came over to grab a bag.
Snowbell seemed curious and began eyeing the other girl with interest.
"Well, hello there!" The girl said, letting the Eevee sniff her hand.
"Oh, um... hi." Haku shyly murmured out.
"Is this your Pokémon?" The girl asked.
"Um... yes." Haku said.
"I've never seen a white Eevee before!" The girl said, smiling. "That's pretty cool."
"Oh, thank you..." Haku said. She didn't know what else to say.
"Well, see you around, trainer." The girl said, "Good luck!"
Haku was too shy and befuddled to answer. The girl mistook her for a fellow trainer?
Haku didn't want to break the truth to her, the truth that she was too scared to be a trainer.
After she paid for the items at the checkout, Haku walked out of the store...
"Help! Someone, please!"
She heard a cry of distress pierce her ear. Haku couldn't stand to see or hear people in danger, but being the only one around, she had to help...
She turned her face in the direction the cry came from. A short, stocky man was being attacked by a large canine Pokémon with long black fur.
"What should I do?" Haku thought again. The last timed she remembered thinking that thought was when she rescued Snowbell. The tension felt so familiar.
Back then, Haku jumped in to help the poor Pokémon. This time, Haku felt she needed to jump in as well.
"Alright, Snowbell..." Haku said, shakily, "Are you... ready to battle?"