Together Forever

Ash was training Riolu. He had been training with the little fighting Pokemon for a long time. Chloe came up to him.

"Ash, how long have you been training Riolu?"

"Don't know." Ash replied.

"Don't tell me you two have been at it since your mom left this morning."

"Yeah, that sounds about right. I keep asking if Riolu wanted to stop for a while, but he just wanted to keep going." He looked at Riolu. "Isn't that right, Riolu?"

"Olu!" The Pokemon agreed. Ash smiled.

"You're one determined Riolu, that's for sure. And that is what I like about you. You remind me of me. Always wanting to keep getting stronger. There's no doubt about it, you're my Pokemon all right!"

"Riolu!"

"Where's Pikachu, Ash?" Chloe wanted to know. Ash and Riolu looked at her.

"I don't know." The Pokemon trainer admitted. "I haven't seen him since this morning. "I'm going to go and look for him." He was about to go when he felt a tug on his pant leg. He looked down. It was Riolu.

"Olu!" The Pokemon said. "Riolu!" Ash smiled again.

"You want to keep training, don't you?" Riolu nodded. "I guess Pikachu will show up later. Let just continue your training!" Riolu agreed. Chloe got mad at this.

"So you don't care for Pikachu?!" She snapped. Ash just looked at her and became mad as well.

"What are you talking about, Chloe? Of course I care. I care about all of my Pokemon."

"Well, you have a funny way of showing it."

"Look, Pikachu was the very first Pokemon when I started out on my Pokemon journey. He and I have been through a lot during that time. He's my best friend and he knows it."

"Then where is he?"

"I told you. I don't know. But I'm sure he'll turn up."

"What if he doesn't because he ran away because he was jealous of Riolu?" Ash was confused. So was Riolu.

"Jealous? Ran away? Riolu?" He got mad again. "No, Pikachu is not like that. He would never do that. He knows that Riolu wants to get stronger and in order for him to do that, I got to train him more." Riolu nodded in agreement.

"How do you know? You're not Pikachu's mind. You don't know what he's feeling. You might think you do because you two have been together for so long, but you don't!"

"I know my own Pokemon so why don't you mind your own business?!" Then Professor Cerise came outside.

"I heard shouting out here." He said. "Is everything alright?" The two and Riolu looked at him.

"Sorry, Dad." Chloe apologized to her father. "I was just lecturing Ash on how he should consider his Pokémon's feelings."

"And I was just telling your daughter that I care for all of my Pokemon and there's just no way that Pikachu, who has been my partner for so long, would run away due to jealousy." Ash retorted.

"And how do you know that?" Cerise asked.

"I just said that I…" He then began thinking it over. Was Pikachu jealous and ran away? Was it even possible? He didn't think it could, but maybe. He wasn't so sure. He remembered Chikorita being jealous of Pikachu back in the Johto region and when it had evolved into a Bayleef. It was mad that Ash scolded it so much for being overly happy and wanted to stay with that elderly lady. If that was the case, then he supposed Pikachu being jealous and running off is possible even though it may be strange and out of character for him to do so. Ash began to have tears stream down his face. Riolu tugged at Ash's pant leg again and Ash looked down and saw the Pokemon frowning.

"No, Riolu." The trainer sobbed. Riolu was confused. "It's not your fault. It's mine. I'm Pikachu's trainer too. I should've considered what Pikachu was feeling instead of just focusing all of my energy on you. The signs were there. I just didn't see them. And to think I want to be the world's best Pokemon master? I'm the worst!"

"Don't say that." Cerise said. "You just made a mistake is all and you've learned a valuable lesson. It happens. Now you just need to correct it." Ash looked at the professor.

"But how? I don't even know where Pikachu is."

"Pikachu seemed really fond of your mother and seemed to be upset that she was leaving. If I would make a guess, maybe he followed your mom?"

"All the way back to Pallet Town?" Cerise shrugged.

"Could be." Ash wiped away his tears and looked determined.

"Then I got to make this right, but first I want to make sure he's not in the house and lab." Cerise nodded.

"A wise choice." Ash was so determined that he took off without returning Riolu to its Pokeball. But Riolu understood. He also wanted to train, but knew this was important. Plus, the Pokemon could do it on its own.

As Ash went inside, Yamper came out of the building. Chloe knelt down and picked it up.

"Pikachu should forgive Ash just like you did when you were jealous of Pidove and I did of you when I was younger."

"Yam, Yamper!" The electric dog agreed.

"Goh." Ash said when he saw him in the lab. Raboot and Sobble were with him. Sobble was on Goh's head. "Have you seen Pikachu anywhere?"

"No, sorry, I haven't." Goh told him.

"Then it's true then. Pikachu was jealous and ran away to my mom's." Goh was shocked.

"All the way in Pallet Town? Are you sure?" Ash nodded.

"I'm sure."

"Ash, there's something else you should know. I didn't see your mother's Mr. Mime anywhere either." This time, Ash was shocked.

"Mimey? Oh man! Mom is going to be devastated. She is really going to scold me for this later." He then thought of something. "Wait, why would Mimey run away? I didn't hurt it's feelings." Goh shrugged.

"Beats me. But that Mr. Mime is so caring and protective, it could've gone with Pikachu for protection."

"That's Mimey for you. Always thinking of others." He frowned. "Unlike me." Goh was about to say something when Cerise and Chloe, still holding onto Yamper, came into the room. So did Riolu. Ash looked at the Professor.

"Professor?" He asked. "Is it all right that I go to Pallet Town to get back Pikachu?"

"It's perfectly fine with me." Cerise said.

"I'll go too." Goh offered. "Along with Sobble and Raboot."

"Thanks." Ash thanked him. "But this was my mistake, not yours."

"I know. I just figured you could use the company. Plus, I can catch Pokemon along the way and fill in my pokédex."

"Classic, Goh." Chloe said as the two ran off.

"He is a go- getter, all right." Her dad agreed. "I'm not surprised. I was like him at his age, always wanting to catch Pokemon. That's why I became the man you see today. I wouldn't be surprised if he follows in my footsteps."

"Yeah."

"Yamper!" Yamper put in. Cerise looked at Riolu.

"And don't worry, little guy. We'll look after you until Ash gets back." Riolu agreed.

"Ash!" Goh shouted after him when they were outside. "Shouldn't we call your mom first and tell her?"

"Nah!" Ash shouted back. "We have no time! It'll be a surprise; she'll love it seeing her son so soon." Goh was unsure, but agreed.

"Alright."

Ash, Goh, Sobble and Raboot went to catch a train going to Pallet Town. Ash had to apologize to Goh for not letting him catch Pokemon on the way. Goh was disappointed, but understood. On the way, Ash was thinking of what to say to Pikachu when they reunite. He was deep in thought that he didn't hear Goh talking to him.

"Ash!" Goh said to him, snapping him back into reality. Ash looked at him. "Are you okay, Ash? I've been calling your name a few times now."

"Sorry." Ash apoligized. "But I really screwed up with Pikachu. I didn't mean to hurt his feelings. It's just…"

"I know what you mean." Goh said. He glanced at Raboot. "You saw it. Back when Raboot was a Scorbunny, I was so down with the idea of Mew being my first Pokemon that I didn't think of how that would badly hurt Scorcbunny's feelings."

"I remember that." Ash recalled. "You shouldn't have said that. That was really mean of you." Goh frowned.

"I know. It's just that I was so caught up in the moment. If I wasn't so caught up, I would never have said what I said. I was selfish."

"Just like me. I was so focused on Riolu's training that I didn't think how this would affect Pikachu."

"Guess we both have a lot to learn about our Pokémon's feelings and to put them above our own."

"Yeah, no kidding." This time Ash frowned. This made Goh concerned.

"What are you thinking about now?"

"Pikachu and I have been together for a really long time. I should've already known this. It shouldn't be an excuse."

"Don't beat yourself up like this. It happens to the very best of us."

"I suppose." He smiled. "Thanks for cheering me up like this." Goh smiled.

"No problem! You would've done the same thing." He changed the subject. "I'll stop taking to you so you can think about what to say to Pikachu."

"Thanks again, Goh. I appreciate that very much."

"And again, it's no problem."

The train slowed down after leaving the Viridian City Train Station and then stopped all together. Everyone was confused.

"Hey, what gives?" Goh wanted to know. "What's happening? Why did the train suddenly stop?"

"Don't know." Ash said to him. "Maybe it broke down?" Goh looked to him like he was nuts.

"But they rarely break down. That's how they are built.." The PA system then came on.

"Sorry about this passengers." The PA apoligized. "The train suddenly broke down. It looks like we could be here a while." Everyone groaned. Ash gave Goh a 'See?' look.

"Don't even say it." Said an annoyed Goh. Ash changed the subject.

"I can't stay for whenever they fix the train." He stated. "That can take forever. We're going now. Come on. It's not much further. We can walk the rest of the way." This got Goh excited.

"And on the way I can catch some wild Pokemon! That's why I brought Raboot and Sobble along." He saw Ash giving him a look and sighed, "Right, sorry. You making up with Pikachu is more important. I was just caught up in the moment." He looked at his two Pokemon. "Sorry, guys. Looks like I brought you two for nothing." Luckily for him, the two Pokemon didn't seem to care one way or the other, They all got up and ran to get off of the train when the announcer came back on.

"If anyone is in a hurry and simply cannot wait, you may get off now and go and board another train." The announcer announced over the loud speaker.

"Ash, did you hear that?" Goh called up to him.

"I did!" Ash called back. "But that could take a while. We'll just walk. It's no big deal. We can use the exercise." Again, Goh was unsure but agreed.

"Alight."

On the way, they saw someone driving a truck. The lady stopped for them.

"Do you two need anything?" She asked in a Southern accent.

"Yes." Ash told her. "We're looking for a Pikachu and Mr. Mime. Have you seen them?"

"As a matter of fact, I have. Those two rode in the back of my truck not too long ago."

"Do you know where they went?" Goh asked.

"I can't rightfully say. They both hopped out and moved on. By the way, that Pikachu sure has a way to make a vehicle pull over." Ash was curious about this, but didn't ask. "Do you want me to give you a ride and look for them with y'all?" Ash shook his head.

"That's okay. We know where they went."

"You sure? It wouldn't be a problem. I like helping out folks and Pokemon in need."

"No, that's okay. Thank you though,"

"Okay, then. Good luck!" With that, she drove off. The trainers and Pokemon took off once again.

I'm coming, Pikachu! Ash thought to himself. I'm coming to make things right,

Ash, Goh, Sobble and Raboot all saw Pikachu and Mimey just arriving at Ash's house.

"Well, what do you know?" Goh observed. "We came at the right time. We didn't need to wait. How convenient."

"Pikachu!" Ash called just as the yellow rodent was about to head back to Vermilion City. Pikachu stopped in his tracks and looked at him, not believing his eyes.