Ash shared in shock as he looked at the three pokeballs, all of which were empty.
"Are there really no Pokemon left, Professor?" Ash asked desperately.
"Well," Professor Oak said as he scratched his chin nervously, "there is one other Pokemon. But-"
"I'll take it!"
The Professor grimaced as he looked down at the pokeball machine. He then pressed a button, and a pokeball emerged.
"I must warn you, Ash," he said as he took out the pokeball, "this Pokemon is a bit… unique."
"It doesn't matter," Ash said determinedly. "I need a Pokemon!"
"Very well," Oak said as he pressed the Pokeball's button. With a flash of light, a Pokemon emerged from the ball.
The Pokemon's slim body was a cream color, while the tip of its long tail and hind paws were brown. It had several whiskers around its face, as well as black ears. Most notably, it had a large golden coin on its forehead.
"It's name is Meowth," said Oak.
"Wow!" Ash said in amazement as he looked at the fuzzy pokemon in front of him. "It's so cool!"
Meowth yawned and stretched out, then looked upwards at Professor Oak.
"Alright old man, what do you have for me today?"
Ash's eyes widened.
"It… can talk?!" he said in shock, causing Meowth to look back towards him.
"Indeed," said Oak. "As I said, this Meowth is a rather unique Pokemon that has the ability to speak human language. I'm not quite sure how he managed to do so, but it's fascinating, and it may come in handy for you."
"Awesome!" Ash said as he grabbed Meowth and smiled. "Hey Meowth? You want to go out on an adventure?"
"I'm choosing you as my starter Pokemon!" said Ash. "Isn't that cool?"
For a moment, the scratch cat Pokemon stared at Ash as the young trainer smiled at him.
He then drew out his claws and began to slash at him.
"Ow, ow ow!" Ash cried out in pain.
"Ah, I feel I may have needed to warn you," said Oak. "He is rather distrusting of humans."
"Owww," Ash moaned as he let Meowth down. "Come on, Meowth, can't we try to get along?"
"Hmph!" said Meowth. "Why should I try to get along with some twerp like you?"
"Twerp?" Ash said, feeling slightly insulted. "Hey, just so you know, I'm going to become the greatest Pokemon Master of all time!"
Meowth stared at Ash with a raised eyebrow. In response, the Raven haired boy got down on his knee and looked at the small feline with a more gentle look on his face.
"Come on, Meowth, I think we can be a great team together, and we could really go far if we work together. So what do you say? Can you at least give me a chance?"
Meowth looked at Ash suspiciously, unsure of whether or not he was really trustworthy. After a moment, however, he sighed and nodded.
"Fine," he said as he crossed his arms. "But I ain't going back into one of those little balls."
Ash smiled. Even if Meowth seemed reluctant, he was at least getting somewhere.
Ash blinked and looked up, surprised to see his mother entering the room.
"Mom! What are you doing here?"
"I came to bring you your stuff," she said in a matter-of-fact tone. "You were in such a rush that you didn't even bother to change!"
Ash's face went red at the reminder that he was still in his pyjamas. This in turn caused Meowth to burst out laughing.
"Oh?" said Delia. "And who is this?"
"Oh yeah," Ash said as he lifted Meowth up for his mother to see. "This is Meowth! He's going to be my partner!"
"Oh," Delia said, slightly surprised. "Well, I certainly wasn't expecting someone like him!"
"Believe me, lady, I wasn't expecting someone like this either!"
"HE CAN TALK?!" Delia said in shock.
"Professor Oak said he was unique," Ash said with a shrug.
"Yeah, I'm one of a kind!" Meowth said proudly. "Now, can you please put me down?"
Ash quickly set him down, then turned to grab the supplies his mother had brought.
"Thanks, mom," he said, still embarrassed about the whole situation.
"Don't mention it," Delia said with a smile. "Just remember to change your underwear every single day!"
Ash fell over as Meowth laughed again.
A short while later, the pair had made their way onto route 1. Ash was excited to start his career as a trainer, while Meowth was mostly just happy to be out of Oak's lab.
"So, what do you think?" said Ash. "I really want to catch a Pokemon before we reach Viridian City!"
"As long as I don't have to go into a Pokeball, we're good," said Meowth. "I'm just glad I'm out of that lab."
Ash looked down at his new partner with curiosity. The small feline was unlike anything he had ever seen; he had never heard of a talking Pokemon before, and it meant that Meowth could communicate with him much more easily than if he had any other Pokemon. If he could still talk with other Pokemon, then it would open up a whole new world of opportunities for Ash on his quest to become a Pokemon Master.
Assuming, of course, that he could get Meowth to trust him.
"So," he said, hoping to break the ice, "you didn't like being with Professor Oak?"
"No way," said Meowth. "The old man was constantly pestering me with questions. Like How did you learn how to talk? Or What do Pokemon feel in their Pokeballs? And sometimes he tried to get me to translate for other Pokemon, or try to do other weird sciencey stuff. Honestly, I'm glad to be outta there."
"Oh," said Ash. "Well, then I guess we're going to have a good time together."
"Pfft, as if," said Meowth. "I ain't glad about being saddled with some twerp."
"I'm not a twerp!" Ash said in annoyance. "My name's Ash, and I'm going to be a Pokemon Master!"
"Uh huh," Meowth said in an unimpressed tone. "Well, Mr. Pokemon Master, what do you want to do to start off our grand adventure?"
Ash tried to answer, but stopped before he could answer. In truth, he wasn't entirely sure of what he was going to do now. True, he knew he wanted to sign up for the Pokemon League and travel across the region to collect the badges. But right now, at the very beginning? He had no idea.
Fortunately, a sound coming from behind a tuft of grass gave him an answer.
"Hey, look!" he said as a Pidgey poked its head from out of the grass. He then quickly pulled out his Pokedex to scan it.
"Pidgey, the Tiny Bird Pokemon. Pidgey is very docile. If attacked, it will often kick up sand to protect itself rather than fight back."
"That's perfect!" he said. "Come on Meowth! Let's catch ourselves a partner!"
"A Pidgey?" Meowth said as he took a look at the bird Pokemon. "I guess that's a good place to start."
"Yup!" said Ash. "So, what moves do you know?"
"Well, I got Fury Swipes and Scratch," said Meowth, "Shouldn't be too hard to take it down."
Ash smiled. While it wasn't an expansive moveset, it was good enough.
"Okay then!" he said. "Meowth, use Scratch!"
The scratch cat Pokemon grinned as his claws extended.
"Take this, birdbrain!" he cried out as he lunged at Pidgey. The tiny bird Pokemon had just enough time to realize it was under attack to try to dodge, but it still received a glancing scratch from Meowth's claws.
"Keep it up!" said Ash. "Fury Swipes!"
"Don't need to tell me twice!" Meowth said as he slashed at Pidgey. The bird squawked as it was attacked, but quickly responded with a Sand Attack, causing Meowth to cry out in pain.
"Agh!" Meowth cried as he wiped at his eyes. "Stupid bird! You'll pay for that!"
"You got this, Meowth!" said Ash. "Another Scratch!"
The scratch cat Pokemon was all too eager to oblige, and rushed forwards. This time, however, Pidgey opened its wings and flew out of the way before the attack could connect. Unable to stop, Meowth was carried forwards by his momentum and crashed into an object.
"Ow!" he cried out. "What was that?!"
He looked up, ready to give whatever he had crashed into a brutal scratching.
His face then paled as he realized what he had crashed into.
Ash felt a drop of sweat as he lifted up his Pokedex.
"Spearow the Tiny Bird Pokemon. Spearow has a very loud cry that can be heard over half a mile away. If its high, keening cry is heard echoing all around, it is a sign that they are warning each other of danger."
"That's not good," he said nervously.
"Oh," Meowth whimpered as Spearow glared at him. "Um, nice birdie?"
"Spear!" the flying type cried. It then lunged at the scratch cat Pokemon.
"Yah!" Meowth cried as he jumped out of the way. "I'm sorry! It's the other bird's fault! We just wanted him! Attack him!"
Not bothering to listen, the irate flying type continued to attack. Meowth cried out as he ran away, while Ash watched in horror.
Thinking fast, he bent down and grabbed a rock. He then flung it with all his might, hitting Spearow on the head.
To his relief, the tiny bird Pokemon stopped chasing his starter.
He was much less relieved when he realized that Spearow was now glaring at him.
"Uh," he said as a bead of sweat rolled down his forehead, "hi?"
Spearow screeched as it flew right at him.
"Ow! Ow! Ow!" he cried as the brown avian pecked and scratched at him. "That hurts!"
"Spearow! Spear! Spear!"
Meanwhile, Meowth was gasping in relief at no longer being attacked. However, his eyes were quickly drawn to the sight of Ash desperately trying to fend off Spearow.
"Aw, Arceus, the twerp's in trouble now."
As he watched, a thought came to him. If Ash was distracted by the Spearow, then clearly he wouldn't be able to notice anything Meowth would do.
What was stopping the scratch cat Pokemon from just slipping away unnoticed?
The twerp would never notice until it was too late! Meowth thought as he grinned. He then began to run as fast as his legs could carry him.
Ha! Free at last! And I thought I'd never get to run away from anything else ever again!
At that moment, he stopped right in his tracks.
Of course… I could have run away if the others had helped me.
He then remembered the Meowth gang he'd belonged to once. True, they may have accepted him as part of their group, but they had never tried to help him whenever he had fallen behind during their food raids. Admittedly, he had brought it upon himself by trying to be more human, but it still hurt.
Come on, Meowth, can't we try to get along?
And what had been the point of trying to act human, anyway? He had been trying to impress a female of his species, one who had stated that she preferred the company of humans. He had put so much effort into speaking human language, walking on two feet, and emulating human actions as much as he could, until he had finally succeeded. And what did he get in return? The object of his affections had rejected him, calling him a freak.
This is Meowth! He's going to be my partner!
Partner. He had never found anyone who had truly accepted him as an equal. All his life, he had been forced to fend for himself. Even in a group, he had ultimately been subservient to the Persian. Even worse, the Professor thought of him as some weird curiosity to be studied in some lab.
And then Ash appeared, eager to call him his partner. And Meowth had thrown that offer back in his face.
Come on, Meowth, I think we can be a great team together, and we could really go far if we work together. So what do you say? Can you at least give me a chance?
Meowth gritted his teeth. He really didn't want to do this. But he felt in his heart that he had no other choice.
"Take this!" he cried out as his claws extended. He then lunged at Spearow and began to slash at it. The tiny bird Pokemon cried out as it was shoved off of Ash, but Meowth didn't give it any time to strike back.
"Owww…" Ash groaned as he slowly got back up. To his surprise, he saw Meowth viciously clawing at the flying type that had just been pecking at him a few seconds ago.
"What are you waiting for?" Meowth yelled. "Get out one of those ball thingies!"
"Ball… yeah!" Ash said as he grabbed an empty Pokeball. "Pokeball go!"
Meowth jumped out of the way as the Pokeball fell on Spearow. The tiny bird Pokemon was sucked into the red and white sphere, which then began to shake as the release ball glowed red. Ash and Meowth held their breaths as they watched the ball shake.
After what seemed like an eternity, the ball stopped moving and let out a couple of sparks.
"We… did it," said Ash.
"Yeah," said Meowth.
Their faces then burst into a pair of huge grins.
"We did it!" said Ash.
"Yeah we did!" said Meowth.
The two continued to laugh and bounce around as they celebrated their first catch. Then they stopped to look at each other, with Ash bending down to look at Meowth.
"Good job, partner," he said as he held a fist towards Meowth. The normal type was briefly taken aback by the gesture, but soon smiled as he bumped his trainer's fist.
"You too… partner."
A short while afterwards, the weather unexpectedly turned rainy, prompting Ash and Meowth to seek shelter under a tree.
"And so I want to be the very best, like no one ever was," said Ash. "That's why I want to become a Pokemon trainer."
"Well, you got big dreams," Meowth said, impressed by Ash's ambitions. "Dunno if you'll be able to get them, but props to you, Ash."
Ash chuckled, then looked down at the Pokeball that contained his newly caught Spearow.
"Speaking of partners, maybe we should get to know our newest one?"
"You sure?" said Meowth. "She seemed kind of angry."
"She?" Ash said, surprised by the revelation. He then smiled, realizing just how useful Meowth's talents would prove to be. "Never mind, I'm sure we can work it out."
With this, he opened the Pokeball, revealing the tiny bird Pokemon. She seemed to be angry, though not to the point that she was trying to attack them.
"Hey, Spearow," Ash said as he slowly extended his hand. "I'm Ash, and, well, I caught you."
"Spear?" Spearow said, staring suspiciously, but with a hint of curiosity in her eyes.
"Yeah," Meowth said as he stepped forward, doing his best not to sound nervous. "Sorry about beating you up and stuff. No hard feelings?"
For a moment, the avian was silent, causing both Ash and Meowth to sweat nervously. Then, she squawked, causing Meowth to turn his head.
"What did she say?" said Ash.
"She wants to know what you're planning on doing with her," Meowth replied.
"Oh, said Ash. "Well, I want to become the greatest Pokemon Trainer in the world. And we could really use a feisty Pokemon like you on our team."
"Spear," Spearow said, considering what Ash had told her. "Spear, spear."
"That's great!" said Meowth. "She says she'll join us!"
Ash grinned at the news, excited to have a new member on their team.
"Welcome to the team then, Spearow!"
As the three cheered together, the rains began to dissipate. As the sun began to shine again, a beautiful rainbow became visible in the sky.
"Look at that," said Ash. "Doesn't that make you excited?"
"Yeah," said Meowth. "It's like a sign that our journey is gonna be really lucky!"
The group smiled as they took in the sight. Then, as they watched, they caught sight of something remarkable.
"Hey guys," said Ash, "What is that?"
A huge figure flew out of the clouds and over the rainbow. It was clearly a flying-type Pokemon of some sort, although it did not look like anything Ash had ever seen. It had an avian body that was mostly red and white in color, albeit with green and gold along its wings and tail.
"Who's that Pokemon?" Ash said out loud as he pulled out his Pokedex.
"Data not found. Pokemon may not be native to Kanto. Consult your local professor for more information."
"No data?" Ash said in confusion. Turning back towards the mysterious Pokemon, he caught sight of an object falling towards them. It seemed to float slowly downwards, getting closer to them each second. Now more confused than ever, Ash reached out towards the object, waiting for it to come close enough to grab.
Finally, he caught it.
"What is it, Ash?"
Ash looked at the object, and immediately recognized it as a feather, albeit one unlike any he had seen before. It was colored the same as the mysterious Pokemon; mostly red and white, with green and gold coloring at the tip.
"A feather?" said Meowth.
"Yeah," said Ash as he looked back towards the sky. The mysterious Pokemon had flown further, and was now barely visible over the horizon. Even so, the group couldn't help but stare in awe as it vanished.
"Hey guys…" Ash said as he watched the mystery Pokemon disappear.
Ash looked down at his Pokemon with a determined look on his face.
"We're going to become the best… and then we'll meet that Pokemon again!"
The two Pokemon smiled with the same determined look on their faces.
"Yeah we will!" said Meowth. "We'll be the very best, like no one ever was!"
Ash turned to the feather in his hand and smiled. The day had started out very differently from what he had in mind, but it was working out far better than he could ever have imagined. He had a starter unlike any other, a newly caught Pokemon with a fierce fighting spirit, and an encounter with an unknown Pokemon, and even something to take with him from said encounter.
Overall, he had a very good feeling about this journey.
A/N: I've had this story idea for a while, but I've never really done much with it, mostly due to other projects. Right now I'm feeling kind of stuck with them, though, so maybe this will help get my creativity going again?
Anyway, hope you enjoyed this!