No Argument

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Alas. More sappy fanfiction.

After wandering through various fandoms, I had to sit down and write something vaguely "good," as 99.9% of what I saw was hideously, frighteningly, MIND-BLOWINGLY BAD. And then, there were some "bad" fanfictions that had plenty of reviews... Why does it work that way? Anyhow... HOENNSHIPPING, or whatever it's called... Brendan x May, folks, and I should call it more friendshippyness than anything, but... eh...

Enjoy, and review, it makes meh happy!

-Azu

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Defeat.

His utter end.

...It was all over.

People were surging onto the battlefield, rushing past him to congratulate the girl that had overthrown his throne of half an hour. Nobody remembered him all of a sudden... But he wasn't surprised. Those people nowadays... They wouldn't remember family. He rose, standing where he had fallen. That peculiar green-haired boy was twirling her around, hugging her and beaming brightly. They were both laughing. Cameras were flashing. The buzz of excited spectators and media were straining his ears.

He felt some sort of pang of jealousy. Jealous of her sudden fame, cherishment, adoration... Things he had only several minutes ago.

He picked up his fallen bag, pulled up the collar on his windbreaker, then trudged out the exit into the blindingly white world outside.

/I had that... for a little while./ He thought to himself ruefully as he walked along the short paved path that had led to his battles against the Elite Four and Steven. He stopped at the first archway he came to, and turned around to stare at the grand building so many trainers strived to see and enter with determination. /Goodbye, May./

He continued his way out, past the numerous archways and flowers, to the sea. There, he called upon his Sharpedo, to which he gave an affectionate pat, before leaving the land of misery, as he had decided to name it.

. : ~ : .

"75% Off Sale!" declared the advertisement poster.

He stared at it suspiciously, then at the huge building that loomed above him. This was the biggest sale in ages, he knew... Because of May's spectacular 'win.' He was half offended and half relieved when the newspapers and TV shows conveniently forgot to mention his name. They should have at the *least* reminded the readers and viewers that Brendan Birch had been the official winner only a few minutes previous... But then, if everyone knew, they would just mock him.

Well, despite all that, a sale was still a sale.

He ventured inside. The cool air of the fan overhead washed down upon him. The receptionist gave him a tired, 'save me' sort of welcome, and an attempted smile, and he gave a small nod of acknowledgement. With one look at all the balloons, streamers and people, it was easy to know that the Lilycove Deparment Store was celebrating the victory of May. He weaved in and out of people to the surprisingly empty staircase, which he climbed without hesitation.

What to buy? A nice silk tie for his father - heavens knew the professer needed a new one for talking at universities and conventions and such - maybe some cookware for his mother, and some Pokemon plush toys for the sudden new arrival to the Birch family. The lines were long, but he was in no immediate rush to get home... In fact, he wanted to stay away from Littleroot town, where the agony of defeat would sting the most.

With a tie, a glass Kyogre figurine, pots and pans, Azurill and Pichu dolls, and a new jacket for himself, Brendan trekked all the way up to the top. The wind sifted through his hair and whipped his old jacket around him. With a soft sigh, he inserted some money into the nearby soda machine. Two lemonades popped out; he put one into his bag and carried the other to a worn wooden bench with rusted green armrests and sat down.

Would it end here?

"Hey, Brendan!"

He blinked, turning around slowly. It was a tall, lanky girl with vibrant red hair that seemed so familiar...

"...Flannery? What are you doing here?"

"For the sale, duh!" She rolled her eyes. She plopped down into the seat next to him without an invitation. "I wouldn't miss a sale this huge in a million years! So... Whatcha been up to lately?"

"Eh. Not much." He took a small sip of his lemonade while looking at her curiously. Was she going to tease him? Pity him? Ask him why he had lost?

"Still moping?"

"What? I'm not - "

"You are *so* moping." Flannery gave him a sympathetic smile. "I know that look."

"Did you ever beat the Poke Champ and then get ground into the dirt by your rival of God-knows-how-long?" His mouth twisted into a bitter frown.

"No, I haven't. But I've experienced something similar enough. I know how it feels like. I felt so horrible for a real long time afterwards, but... I didn't let it get me down!" Her fist shot into the air triumphantly. Brendan raised an eyebrow. "Look at me now! I'm a butt-kickin' gym leader! Something I've always wanted to be since I was a kid your age!"

"Really." His tone was flat. "You don't know the misery I've been wallowing in for the past week."

"Psssh. Brendan, I never saw you as the drama-queen type." Flannery pointed a finger at him accusingly, and he grimaced. "Can't you get over and go on with life?"

"*No*," Brendan hissed vehemently. "My pride's been dented far beyond recognition."

With a huff, Flannery muttered, "You always had too much of it, anyways."

"Hmph."

"You know what it felt like to be beaten by you, *then* May? I lost to two fourteen-year-olds within a week of each other! It was absolutely humiliating! *Beyond* humiliating!"

Brendan made an annoyed sound. "Look, Flannery, I appreciate your *attempts* to *comfort* me, but - "

"Aha!" She jumped to her feet, her eyes burning passionately. "You like May, don't you!"

He dropped his forehead into his hand and groaned. "That doesn't have to do with anyth - "

"You like her! That's it! Why didn't it occur to me sooner? Of course!"

"Flannery - "

"Go!" Flannery lunged down and hauled him up by his shoulders and thrust his backpack into his arms. He took a step back when she leaned down into his face. "Look. You go, get to Littleroot ASAP, and go tell May!"

"I *don't like her*, Flannery..." Brendan tried again. Flannery wouldn't hear it.

"Yes you do! Home! Go now! Scat!" With every word, she shoved him further and further to the staircase. Brendan sighed and complied, turning around heading down the steps, if only to shut her up. At the fifth floor, he could hear her laugh. Shaking his head sadly, he continued on his way downwards.

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Despite Flannery's 'encouragement' to get back to his hometown as soon as (Humanly) possible, he took his time and took the scenic route, riding his bike all the way he could possibly go. Once he reached Route 110, he headed west, sailed across the small lake, and then headed south down Route 103 to Oldale Town. There, he rested overnight before taking on the half-hour walk to Littleroot. All too soon, night had fallen and risen, and the sun shone cheerily in the sky. He said a thank you and a goodbye to the nurse at the Pokecenter, then began the final leg of his journey home.

It brought back such memories to walk through the grass where he had once caught his first Pokemon. Catching the low-level Zigzagzoons and Poochyenas had brought him such glee... Now he found no such happiness. He only battled and raised his Pokemon - and if he did catch another new species, it didn't fill him up with such joyfulness as it had before.

He found himself at the entrance to Littleroot. Running a hand through his hair, he took the first few steps back into his hometown. He could see May's home, his own, and his father's lab. As he took more steps, he could see the his father coming around the side of the house, his bookbag hanging at his side. He was writing something down in one of his numerous notebooks, and he finished, flipping it shut and pocketing it. He looked up. Their eyes met.

"Brendan!" A smile that stretched from ear-to-ear appeared on his face. Brendan managed a small smile in return. "You've come home!"

"Yeah, I... have..." He fidgeted with his gloves, unsure of what to say. Did his father know of his shameful defeat...?

"Come and give your old man a hug, Brendan!" He held out his arms. With only a moment of hesitation, Brendan ran over and bounded into his father's arms. Professer Birch was laughing as he squeezed his son and tousled his snowy hair. "Has it really been so long? How've you been?"

"Fine... Hey, Dad, has May come home yet?"

"May? Nah, not yet. I was going out to do some fieldwork, but actually... I think I'll let it slide for one day. Come inside, you must be tired." His father pat his back with a large hand, guiding him back into their home. His father continued with his babbling, and Brendan was only half listening. His father was a well-respected professer... He wanted only to impress him. This defeat of his would bring shame upon him as well as the entire Birch household, he knew. And he didn't...

"Brendan!" Mrs. Birch cried, leaping up from the table and rushing over to hug him and kiss him. "Brendan, dear! When did you get home?"

"Just now." Brendan wiggled out of his mother's vicegrip and set his bag down on the table.

"Oh, Brendan, I heard about what happened, and..."

He felt his heart seize up as he took out the gifts for his family. He turned around slowly.

"We're still so proud of you." His mother's eyes sparkled with tears. "You were Pokemon Champion... And even if it was for just a little while, it made us so proud."

He hung his head in shame. "...May beat me."

"I could tell from the start May would grow up to be an amazing Pokemon trainer, and you've done so well, too, Brendan... It's just..." Professer Birch stopped, seeing Brendan's shoulders twitch. "I'm sorry, that probably wasn't the right thing to sa - "

Brendan bolted to the stairs, leaping up them two at a time. He threw open the door to his bedrom and raced over to his bed, leaping upon it facedown.

He had never thought defeat would harm him so much... He should've been happy, he knew. May was his kind-of friend, and at least *she* had beaten him, and not some other freak of nature, like a Team Magma or Aqua wannabe. But still... it was May. Even though May had always bested him in their encounters, he had never thought she would beat him when it came to being Poke Champ. . .

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"Ugh, paprazzi. I just hate them." May muttered. "They're going to stalk me from now on."

"It feels nice to be famous, though, doesn't it?" Wally smiled, walking alongside her. "Even with the lack of privacy and all..."

"You just wait, Wally. In a week from now, they're going to think we're an item! Yeesh." May crossed her arms over her chest, a frown on her face. "They don't even mention Brendan anymore!"

"Oh, but Brendan... He's old news now, isn't he?"

May made a face at him. "Brendan was only Champ a few minutes before I was! He's not even given a sentence on the evening news..."

"It can't be that bad..."

"But it is!" May threw up her hands in frustration. "Brendan, he's..." She sighed. "I don't know. But he deserves *some* kind of fame."

"For being your rival all this time?" Wally suggested.

"Something like that. He must feel horrible.."

"You've beaten me a bunch of times, and I don't really care. I take it as a learning experience!"

"You're different, Wally. Very different."

"Should I take that as offense?"

"Go ahead." May smiled softly. She reached for a Pokeball. "I'll be Flying home. I don't think the media's going to tail me with some Swellows, now are they?"

"Nah. I doubt it. They'd be pretty hardcore news reporters if they did." Wally also took out a Pokeball. "I'll be doing the same. See ya, May!"

"Bye, Wally." She watched as he took off on his Altaria, and her smile disappeared. What would Brendan think of her? Probably ignore her... With a heavy heart, she released her Pelipper, and asked it to take her home.

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Brendan was sulking outside on his balcony when he saw a shadow of a passing bird fly overhead. Only... it wasn't a Taillow. It looked more like a very familiar Pelipper who belonged to someone he knew all too well.

"May!" He called. The Pelipper swooped downwards, and May, looking sheepish, jumped off the back of her Pokemon.

"Hey Brendan..." She mumbled shyly. Her Pelipper perched on the railing and gave a squawk. She returned it to a Pokeball hastily, turning back to him with hesitancy. "Um, about the..."

"You won, I lost. No argument." Brendan cut her off, nearly ignoring her existence as he leaned on the railing of his balcony, staring out into the sky. May worked her mouth a moment.

"Are you... Are you bitter?"

"Me? Heh. You might call it bitter. I think it's more... disappointment." Brendan looked at her sideways, and she blushed. "In myself, of course. I'm... proud that you beat me."

"You're proud?" May was taken aback. She tugged at a strand of hair nervously. "Because I *beat* you?"

"It would look bad if you lost in one of the biggest battles a Pokemon trainer could hope for when your father was a gym leader, y'know? And I've had a ton more experience than you have, but you still beat me." He flashed her a cocky grin, and May frowned, taking a step forward.

"You... Why, you..." She fumed, gripping the railing and glaring at him.

"I'm kidding." His grin faded into a small, reminiscent smile, and his eyes softened. "I'm still proud of you, of course, but I'm mad at myself for losing... Although it was probably for the better."

May's blue eyes widened a little. "Brendan..."

"A little humbleness never hurt anybody, now did it?" He closed his eyes and sighed as a light wind brushed past them, stirring their hair.

May stared down in embarassment at her shoes. "I'm sorry I beat you."

"Don't think like that, May." His voice was tired, and it no longer held that sharp edge it normally did. "You deserved to win."

"If you're going to be all mopey and depressed about it, I don't think I should have!" Her fists were clenched as she stared at him, her eyes passionate.

Brendan turned to her, all former confidence and determination gone from his beautiful eyes. "You won. I lost. There is no argument. No going back."

"But Brendan - !"

He reached out and wrapped his arms tightly around her, tucking her head under his chin. May cowered against him, her eyes brimming with tears.

"I'm glad you care, May," Brendan whispered. "But it's too late now."

"I want - "

"Will a rematch shut you up?" Brendan took her face into his hands, tilting it upwards. May's fingers gripped his wrists tightly.

"What if I win again?" She whimpered.

"I'm offering because I won't lose." Some of his old holier-than-thou air was back.

"But - "

"No argument." He said, taking her hand in his and guiding her back into his room and down the stairs. "At all."

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fin

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Eh.

::Waves "What kind of crap did I just write?!" flag::

Another Hoennshippy fic is coming up; and hopefully, it'll be less... uh... cruddy.

Thanks for reading, y'all.