Once there was a boy. He had a dream. Sure, everyone has dreams, even the coldest and evilest of all people. But, James didn't dream of fame or riches or even taking over the world.

He dreamt of friend...

::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

Rating: PG - mild drug use and slight language. Category: Romance. POV: James.

::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

Fox sez: I'm really really really sorry for the delay! ... Poo on me, I guess. I'm also a slow writer. And an even slower typer, which makes things... difficult.

The date?

It's changed now... Well, it's exactly the same. Except for the year. And I've moved it up a couple of days, 'cause I can't seem to wait six days just for Christmas when I can do it in two.

23 - 12 - 94

Yay! Go me. And the year? Well, I was born in '88, so I don't think I'd remember any songs from back then.

=^-^;;= Oh yeah! Also another thang: in the CD drama Rocket Gang : It's a White Tomorrow!, Musashi and Kojirou state somewhere that they recieved Arbo and Dogasu as ceremonial gifts when a person reaches adulthood. So... I had to find another idea for a Chrissy present.

You twit, Destiny Fox.

And proud to be one.

:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: :::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: ::::::

.:: You're It : Chapter 3 - ...Never Let it Fade Away ::.

"Come on! We're nearly there!" I heard her cry of happiness fill the otherwise, empty alleyway. The sudden noise spooked a wild Meowth, who raced out in front of me, almost causing me to trip. Quickly, I steadied myself uneasily.

I remained confused and propped myself onto a nearby window sill and shouted, "Nearly where?"

"Somewhere!" her reply rang down the alley.

"Where's somewhere?"

"Somewhere."

Regaining my balance, I sighed and shrugged. I had no choice but to follow her and find out what she had in store for me.

Racing into the unknown, I kept my senses in order, waiting for anything unexpected. But, nothing out of the ordinary occurred when I reached the end of the dark alleyway. In fact, the path we had taken led us onto a narrow, one way road lined with street lights. And on every street light hung a green, gold or white artificial wreath, each with a pretty red bow. I had never seen such a thing in my life.

Parents with children were wandering on either side of the road, peeking at the Christmas displays, depicting the birth of Jesus, in shop windows, and kids laughing joyously at the special occasion with cotton candy in their tiny hands.

On one side of the road, a cluster of pedestrians had grouped around a small group of musicians. Most of the instruments were skin drums, adorn with different coloured strings of streamers. Four or five ladies in brilliant sarongs and brightly dyed tops (despite the chilly weather) and plastic hibiscuses in their dark hair, were crammed tightly in a semi- circle beside the percussionists. They were probably Torres Strait Islanders, I guessed.

But apart from the singers and drummers, I admired the one guy on the end: a young man in his early twenties holding a guitar. Wearing a light blue, collared T-shirt, with a picture of a Lapras in the corner, his guitar was tainted an azure to make the collar of his shirt. He stood at the end of a line of seven percussion players.

The only times I had seen a guitar was when my Grandpapa played his for me when I used to visit him. He taught me how to play Twinkle Twinkle Little Star and how to do a B-flat Major scale. I smiled fondly at the memory, though it wasn't anything to be exactly proud of. But, the guitar was my favourite musical intrument of all.

Other than the guitar, I played another instrument. The piano. And I was rather good at it too... if I did say so myself. After one year of playing (I was four years old), I decided to persue it as a hobby. And what's more, my parent's approved of the practise as being proper.

I was going to miss that old grand piano in the seventh lounge room... I knew it.

Jessie tugged on my arm roughly, bringing me out of my trance. Confused, I turned to face her.

"What?"

She pointed toward the back of the band. "Look," she whispered into my ear. I followed her gesture to see a very small brass ensemble squeezed in behind the vocalists and percussionists. One trumpet player, a trombone player and, to Jessie's sincere delight, an alto saxophone player, stood there holding their instruments, wearing exotic clothing. I noticed the huge grin pasted on her face when she turned to face me again and I returned it.

And then... they started playing.

The singers sang Christmas carols, while the instrumentalists played the accompaniment. The style of music they played was unfamiliar to me, but next to me, I could see Jessie happily clapping along to the beat and laughing, from the corner of my eye.

Though, I wasn't accustomed to the sort that rang through my ears, making my blood run faster, I felt myself tap my left foot against the bitumen road to the time of the song.

The lyrics of O' Come All Ye Faithful floated above the audience that, within the three minutes had gathered in front of the band. Some kids of less than seven were even dancing to the upbeat tempo. Jessie watched them and giggled.

I, also, couldn't help but smile. From next to me, she sighed - half in relaxation in association to the music, half yearning for something. I could sense it in her voice. So, I decided to do something out of the ordinary, according to my parents, anyway.

Leaning over her shoulder slightly, I whispered into her ear, ever so lightly...

"Hey Jess..."

Almost instantly she turned to face me, almost taking out one of my eyes with a sharp flick of her ponytail. Her nose hovered inches from mine and I struggled furiously to resist the temptation to kiss her right then and there. "Yes?"

I fumbled hopelessly with my words. "W-w-would...you?" Jessie folded her arms over her chest and smirked in that dominating way. I felt the blood rise irreversibly into my already pinkish cheeks. "Er - umm..."

She chuckled at my embarrassment. "Whatever..." she muttered, turning away. Then suddenly lashed out to grab my arm firmly. Even if I tried (which I didn't) to escape the tightening grasp, I probably couldn't. For someone only reaching the seemingly feeble 5"2', she had an amazingly strong grip. She flashed me a grin and yelled over the loud music that had suddenly crecsendoed, "Dance with me!"

"Wha-?" I cried out in surprise, shocked at how she read my mind. But before I could argue against her wishes, I felt a demanding tug on my arm.

Pulling me into the fray of now a large crowd of happy, dancing people, like a dog on a leash, I staggered after her until she stopped near the very front. I simply looked at her, puzzled when she started singing and shuffling along to the tropical music. Which... left me feeling rather stupid, since I didn't know the words to O Christmas Tree and I knew that I couldn't dance by any stretch of imagination (well, other than that awful... ballet... style that Jessibelle tried to make me learn). Frowning, she stopped mid-step and upon seeing my confused face, clutched both of my hands and spun me around in a circle, again startling me.

And another circle...

And another...

And another...

And another...

And...

Well, you get the picture...

After what seemed like centuries of spinning around with only the grip of Jessie's hands stopping me from landing on the ground, covering my rear with dirt, I felt my brain start swimming. Slowly, I sensed dizziness take control of my body. Everything suddenly became a blur of colours to me, mixing together into an ugly shade of brown as I spun.

It almost made me want to vomit...

Everything except Jessie, whose hands were clasped in mine. Her sapphire eyes were squeezed shut in laughter. I suddenly felt my sense of hearing disappear and I realized something; this was fun, something I had never experienced before.

It seemed like the weirdest feeling... having fun... it sounded like an extraterrestrial word to me.

I felt my face contort into a gleeful laugh. It grew louder as my feet seemed to grow further away and I was loosing all feeling of balance slowly fade away. Leaning forward to steady, myself, I had the sudden impression that my legs had grown numb and I couldn't stop myself fall helplessly on top of a quickly stunned Jessie.

She landed with a hard thud onto the hard concrete. I heard her emit a moan of pain as I realized that my complete body weight was slowly crushing her slender frame.

"James...?" she groaned as she opened her eyes for the first time after her had fallen. Then, I finally comprehended that my mouth was hovering just millimeters above hers. I tried again to resist my strong and insinctive urges and attempted to roll off of her lean build but found I couldn't.

"Ooo... James..." She sighed deeply and sat up, forcing me to get off hastily and sit next to her on the pavement.

I pursed my lips, worried at what Jessie was about to say and do next. "Sorry Jess...I-"

She turned to me and looked into my eyes once more. No recognisable or clear emotions were bared upon her face and I felt embarrassed, which, of course, is only natural for me.

"Don't worry about it," she forced through slightly clenched teeth.

I let my eyes wander away from Jessie's for one split second. The islander band had stopped playing (and singing) and were shuffling through their manilla folders for their next item. I also felt the stare of some who had seen my falling and I desperately tried to hide the deep hue of crimson creeping its was slowly across my face.

"Jessie... I'm s-" I started, but she was quick to answer, almost as if she knew what I was going to say.

"Don't worry 'bout it," she said quite firmly. Almost demanding.

But, I was worried. Was she okay? Good one, James, a voice seemed to taunt me from within. I silently scowled at it.

My ego was melting into a little worthless puddle of nothingness and I knew it. And the grimace upon my face quickly faded.

Fidgeting and feeling rather dumb, I found it in myself to get to my feet. Beads of sweat rolled down the back of my neck in nervousness, despite the freezing cold weather.

Now everyone had their eyes on us, including half of the caroling band, who had apparantly forgotten that the other fifty percent were in the middle of playing Hark! The Herald Angels Sing.

I timidly held a hand out to Jessie, who still sat on the pavement in a heap of snow. Her head was bowed toward the ground and I heard a light sigh escape from her mouth. "Here," I offered, smiling and beckoning her to take my grasp. With not a second to spare, she head lifted itself slowly and she returned my smile with anticipation.

"Thanks," she said, taking my hand with her own trembling one. I heaved her effortlessly to her feet and she sighed. This time, in relief. "Come on," she suggested, "we'd better go." With that, she left the crowd whose attention was now turned back to the carolers. I smiled once again and followed her lead, this time with a more lightened heart.

I met with her at the mouth of the alleyway that we had exited from just minutes ago. She was leaning on a streetlamp pole with her arms folded and clear smirk on her face. Even though she was at least five feet away, it was evident that my tripping had probably cost her her egotistical stance. As I walked past, I muttered into her ear, "you might wanna turn 'round."

She threw me a quizzical, yet sly glance, "why?"

"Your butt's wet," I gaffled quietly to myself, but I was sure that Jessie heard - because I was given a swift and hard kick in the rear. She grabbed her own at the same time that I did, inched into the darkness of the alleyway and intuition told me that I'd better follow.

It was also started to get a bit too chilly for my liking.

So, believing my senses, I did. And felt something hit me from behind in the last place I wanted to be hit. It was a snowball and it struck me right in the posterior. And I was sure who it was delivered from.

I gasped and silently swore to myself that I would give her a rather swift revenge - when I had found her.

I tried my best not to gasp at the sudden coldness in an unexpected place and scanned the alley, striving to find her.

Squinting my eyes, I tried to adjust them to the darkened shadows of the alleyway. It was only a matter of seconds in which I spotted her.

Reaching into the darkness, I quickly and roughly wrapped my left arm around my attacker's waist and with my right hand, grabbed a mound of snow off of the ground and smacked it from onto her head, causing her cry out.

"Hey!" Jessie's giggled, squirming around in my tight grasp, desperately trying to escape.

Just like before, I fell onto the ground. But, this time, I had done it on purpose and a cushion of snow broke our fall. It would've been quite a sight, seeing two young teens play-fighting in the snow.

Two young teens of the opposite gender, that is.

But, it didn't bother me or Jessie. I had her pinned in the snow and with a wet backside, I felt the frigidity of the winter night take control.

However, not without some sweet torture.

Though I grew up in a civilized manner, I knew where every girl was ticklish. Even Jessibelle. But I never tickled her... for obvious reasons. It was either here... or there...

Almost instantly, without a moments thought, my hands reached down and I let my hands stray across her stomach through her thin shirt.

"James!" she gasped as inaudibly as she could. "You could at least give me a chance to fight back!"

I let go of her quickly, allowing her to relax into the heap of snow. With my hands on my hips in protest, and pouting, I had started to say something, "but that's not fair, Je-"

But Jessie had already leapt up and out of the bundle of white to attacked me. Her hands grabbing at my armpits, furiously trying to find somewhere to pay me back. I lay on my back with my arms behind my head, grinning like a madman, ignoring the snow and focused on making her agitated.

She scowled and reached under and up my cotton shirt and I suddenly felt her fingernails softly raking my skin.

"Nup," I leered still wearing that silly smile. "I'm not ticklish there either."

Her perfect face contorted into a more agressive glare. "That's not fair!" She pulled back from me and folded her arms over her chest stubbornly.

I raised and eyebrow and shouted back, "What?! That's so hypocritical!"

"That's not fair either! I don't even know what that word means!" she retorted, with a wry smile plastered across her mouth. Her sapphire eyes shot into mine like bullets.

I scoffed sacastically (maybe a little much so), "I beg your pardon?" She had risen out of the snow and was now brushing the remaining patches of white off of her jeans and shot me a playful, yet threatening glare as I, too stood up. At an intimidating height of 5 foot exactly, I was at least four inches taller than Jessie. I was rather tall and lanky with arms and legs too long for my body, but Jessie was simply skin and bone at 12 years of age. But she could beat me up any day.

She turned away with her nose in the air and arms crossed once again. "I said that that's not fair, in case you didn't have the decency to listen," she replied simply and unfolded her arms and planted a pair of balled up fists stubbornly onto her hips.

"Wha-What?" I blinked in her direction. Confused, I allowed myself to visually droop in defeat. She was good with her words, this girl. Alert and clever, she was well suited to living the hard way (not saying that she should). I smiled weakly at her mental and physical strength. "Sorry," I apologized, letting everything relax and I fell onto the ground with only my arms propping me up.

It at least let her know that I surrendered in this one-sided war of words.

She sensed my fatigue and figured that she had won this playful battle of words. "Why?" Jessie plopped herself into a huddle and glanced at me, perplexed.

Her expression hinted slight amusement and I was sure that my cheeks were reddening severely.

"For yelling at you," I explained, meeting her gaze. She smirked and turned her stare at the stars. I did too. And for the first time since the first insult was thrown, we had realized it had stopped snowing.

"Well, you did shout at me," she acknowledged, her voice lingering a bit, "but I did too." Admitting, as easy as it looked, was hard, especially for Jessie. It was obvious in her voice.

She faced me again, her elbows resting on her bent knees. I looked back at her. "You know, James," she said wearily, "that was the first time I had ever-" she yawned loudly and audibly, "...ever confessed to anyone." She smiled despite her situation - she probably saw one of the many 'firsts' as a good thing. And I grinned rather goofily back.

And... was it me or when Jessie lowered her lashes slightly, she blushed?

In your dreams, Jim, my mind chortled teasingly, she wouldn't blush over you...

Just...maybe?

Maybe not.

She yawned lightly leaving her eyelids drooped and lazily-half covering her sapphire tinted eyes. But the glance she threw to me afterwards told me that her mind didn't want to be one hundred percent focused on confessions and other petty things like that.

I sensed her uncomfortability with the particular subject and I decided to change the topic.

"You look tired," I noted, remarking her drained expression, "you want to go back?"

She yawned again, making me do exactly the same. Giggling, she started to get up to her feet. "Okay..." she said. And with that, started walking in the direction we had been walking down just about half an hour ago. Throwing a glance over her shoulder, she added something. "It sure is cold outdoors tonight...eh, Jim?"

My head snapped upwards at the sudden question and slowly nodded, not sure that it was a good enough answer. She had alredy thought of a nickname for me?

She laughed and turned back around and resumed strolling.

I took that as a sign to follow and also stood. My rear felt wet with snow, but hell, it was the best feeling in the world. I had never been allowed to get closer than ten foot to snow, of course, unless it was behind the glass windows of my parent's mansion.

The mansion forced my thoughts back to Growly. He was such a good friend. I was hoping that he would be able to stay with me. Damning myself, I wished that Jessie hadn't sent him out to look for my parents.

I sighed.

Destiny is a wierd thing. I knew it, too.

I wish it didn't have to be this way though... with no love to exist between other than the constant pounding and yearning from within my heart. Such desire...

Jessie's voice suddenly stopped me mid-daydream, "Hey, you Slowpoke! Are you comin' or not?!" I lifted my glance to see that she was just turning around the alleyway's bend. Luckily for me, she had stopped and waited. Her expression looked irritated.

"Yeah..." I replied, yawning mid-sentence, "I'm coming..." Using my remaining strength, I heaved myself foward and started running toward Jessie, who smiled at me when I reached her. Stretching her hand upwards, she grabbed a pink and purple poka-dotted sheet off of a makeshift clothesline that was hanging just inches about our heads.

"Jess...isn't that..." I started, but I felt my voice trailing.

She quickly and intentively finished my sentence for me. "Someone else's. I know. I get that all the time from everyone else."

I frowned while she pulled down the colourful sheet forcefully, "Everyone else?"

"What...? Oh yeah!" she paused in the middle of wrapping the sheet around herself and I and remembered, making to concept sound like a silly one indeed, "my little drug dealing friends. You, really, don't want to mix with that sort. They're kinda..." she made an 'iffy' motion with her hand, "...wierd. If you get my drift."

We started to move together along the dark and deserted alleyway.

I felt her body brush lightly against mine and my entire build stiffened. "Uh..." I was quickly sent back into the real world by the impatient glare of Jessie's sapphire blue eyes. "Yeah...I get you." I replied to flash by chuckling and looking back at her again.

She pushed her head against my neck and nuzzled me affectionately, causing me to slightly jump. "I'm cold," she murmured into my chest. I suddenly felt a thin arm snake itself around my waist. This time, though, I didn't resist. Tenderly, I let myself drape one arm around her shoulders, pulling her closer.

We walked. Without a single word, we continued down the back street, subconsciously. I didn't really care if we got lost in the dark byways of Viridian City. Only if it were with Jessie. She seemed quite blithe in my arms and for the first time in my life, I felt strong. It really boosted my self confidence.

I didn't care if she was wet and cold, and that if I caught a severe cold or what not. All that mattered was that I was close to Jessie. I blushed lightly, but I didn't feel ashamed. To an outsider, we would've looked like a young and blissful couple, happily spending the night in each other's arms. But within, it was so much more.

I guess hugging could be a good enough replacement for all the things in life that I'm missing out on... Why? Why does it have to be that way? Of all the people... why me?

A voice from within seemed to answer with an uncanny tone... Just be glad that you have the opportunity to be her first best friend.

I sighed, yet smiled at the thought. Yeah, I shouldn't sulk over the things I didn't have... I'm to lucky to have all that I needed...

Huddling closer to her, I soon realized that we had, in fact, come back to the same market square at which we started our mini-journey from. I sighed and let the multi-coloured lights of the village's Christmas tree glow against my face.

I quickly recognised Phil's candy store (which had closed for the night) and the many wreaths, tinsel and other festive decorations sprinkled on top of the other shops nearby. Hardly anyone was out walking any this time. And I comprehended why after a cold draft licked at Jessie's and my own legs, causing my entire body to visually shiver.

Almost half expecting Jessie to add some derogatory comment about the harsh winter wind, I peered down at her still form. Her arms had relaxed and weren't wrapped tightly around my waist, but were cushioning her head - that lay sleepily on my left shoulder. Her eyes were closed in deep slumber and I started to ponder how I didn't notice that she was dreaming before.

Looking back at the empty market square, I spied the bench that we were seated at just under an hour ago. I smiled and swept Jessie into my arms and carried her to the lonely lawn-seat.

I sat down without a single sound and lay her head on my lap. Wrapping the blanket around her, I looked back across the market square, and subconciously started talking in soft tones to the sleeping girl draped across my legs.

"You know," I sighed, running a hand over her cheek softly, "I think you are right."

She replied by moaning in her slumber and pulling the sheet firmer around herself. I smiled warmly upon her still figure.

"About how we met because of destiny, remember?" I carressed her smooth, moon-white face carefully, pushing back the strands of crimson hair that had fallen over her eyes ever so delicately.

I bit my lip nervously at the very thought that my ghostly true love could awaken any second now. "You're so beautiful, Jess," I cooed, almost leaning down to kiss her cheek, but stopped suddenly.

The memory of just two nights ago crept back into my mind...

"But... there is an underside to it. If you display any physical love toward me... then, I can't remain in a living state - that means, that I'll return to my spirit form."

...I forced myself, very reluctantly I might add, to draw myself away from her just as my lips were about to graze her own. It was a good thing too. Her eyes quivered slightly and I blushed - at both the aspect of almost kissing her and my dream angel waking up in my arms.

After letting out a low yawn, Jessie opened her eyes slowly to find herself gazing into mine unintentionally. Blinking the sleep out of her eyelids wearily, she moaned something.

"James...? Is it morning already?" she asked, propping herself up with her arms and sat up next to me.

I chuckled. "No... not yet."

She yawned again. "What time is it?"

"I don't know," I replied, shrugging.

Staring out at her surroundings, Jessie sighed. "I think it's about eleven..." she estimated. I stood up and stretched my limbs. I realised how long it had been since I had done some proper walking. Jessibelle nor my parents didn't like the idea of walking, so everywhere we went, Hopkins, the butler, drove us. Even if it were a hundred metre walf to fetch the daily paper.

"I'm a bit tired," I admitted, looking back down at her. Pausing slightly, I alotted her some time to reply. I even coughed... more from the increasingly cold weather.

No answer.

"Jess?" I ventured futher. I leant over to find that she had, indeed, fallen back to sleep with the purple and pink sheet draped across her slender figure.

Smiling, I lay down beside her and half-covered myself with whatever blanket Jessie had left. I sighed lightly as I felt her snuggle against my chest. And I uttered seven sweet words into her ear.

"I love you...sweet dreams, my angel."

Tentatively, I closed my eyes...

An image flashed in my brain. A...a red rectangular object...

A box?

... No! It was a book!

My eyes flew open.

The diary! my mind screamed frantically.

I had forgotten all about it!

What would happen if I didn't write in it on the allotted date? Would she disappear into nowhere? I knew that the bond between my love, the diary and myself had to be kept strong and I couldn't even make sure that it didn't sever! I would've slapped myself at the thought if I could...

Carefully and as quietly as a mouse, I reached down to shake Jessie awake, though I knew that I'd regret it.

With my hand on her shoulder, I tried to shake her out of slumber as delicately as I could. Only within a couple of seconds did she start to stir.

Her eyes opened slowly and she moaned something out of annoyance.

"Huh? James...?"

Her eyes, though heavy lidded, penetrated mine in a strange mix of fatigue and peevishness and I swallowed nervously.

"Umm...I-I, well," I started, but before I could finish my stammering, she sat up and yawned audibly. With a firm stretch of her arms, she stood up onto her feet dizzily and turned to me.

Jessie sighed and blinked half in annoyance and half trying to wake up slowly. "What?" she demanded rather firmly.

"Do you remember finding a red book?" I asked her desperately. I felt myself groped her hands to get her attention. She looked my in the eye with a raised eyebrow.

She frowned slightly, "But it's empty. What good is an empty-"

So she did have it! I gave my gratitude with a loose, but lovable hug and she let out a sharp intake of breath in surprise, cutting off her sentence.

"Great! Where is it?" I quickly released her. She gently pried me off of her and gave a motion towards her 'hole-in-the-ground.'

"Down there," she replied simply. "You can go get it tomorrow... I need to sleep."

What? Tomorrow?! I had to get to that book now! ... But how? Something clicked. Maybe... just maybe...

"Well, you obviously can't sleep out here in the open," I rebuttled quickly and eagerly.

She shrugged. "I guessed you're right. For once. I thought Whitney was stupid..." She gave the smirk again. Otherwise, I would've shrugged off the intimidating gesture. But not this time. I didn't ever stop to wonder who Whitney was.

I felt rather singed at the remark. What exactly was she implying? That I was dumb or something. I got enough of that from Jessibelle. I sighed, but held myself back. I didn't want to get into another silly word argument like before.

"Right..." I replied uneasily, standing up and ducking under the bushes into the darkness with the pink and purple polka-dotted blanket trailing from my hand.

I heard her following me tentatively. Her joggers had caused a thin stick to snap.

A warm hand was placed on my shoulder in a friendly way and I abruptly turned to face Jessie. "James, are you mad at me?" she asked cautiously. I looked back at her with confusion in my eyes.

"Why would I be mad at you?" I inquired, bending down to lift the door to Jessie's home. It landed against the cold, wet ground with a muffled thump.

She laughed nervously. "Well... it just seemed like that. Y'know? When I... kinda insulted your intelligence."

I smiled. "That's okay. I'm not mad, anyway," I said, clambering down the ladder into the hole.

As she followed my lead, Jessie asked: "Sure?"

"Of course." Replying warmly, I stopped at the very bottom of the ladder and waited for her to reach my altitude, then I grasped her tiny waist, heaved her effortlessly into the air and landed her lightly onto her feet.

She turned around in my arms and faced my again, gingerly. "Friends?" she asked again.

I laughed as if the answer to the question was as obvious as the fact that I will love Jessie from beginning to end. And even further than that too! My love for the ghost was unconditional - nothing could make me stop adoring her.

I encased her gently in a loving embrace. "Until all time ends," I mumbled into her hair. "And I remind you... that will be forever, because time is immortal, just like our companionship." She looked into my eyes with a coy smile.

When I pulled away rather disinclined I could see that some of her locks had released themselves from their ponytail. Wisps framed her face delicately, and with the pale light cascading onto her from above, she looked no less like a goddess. Reaching down to her waist, I noticed that her hair was so long. No doubt about it, either.

And she's the most beautiful soul ever. No matter how much she resembled Jessibelle, I can love her forever and a day. They may have looked similar on the outside - but that's where the similarities end.

I yawned. "I'm tired," I said sleepily. Jessie edged out of my grasp to flip a switch on the wall to fill the one roomed house with minimal, but enough light.

"Me too," Jessie agreed. "It's late. We'd better get some sleep." My eyes followed her as she gracefully crossed the room to stand in front of a pile of neatly folded clothes on a table. Shuffling among the pile, dropping a couple of shirts along the way, she grasped a long, cotton, purple nightgown. "What do you think?"

I laughed softly as she held the top of the sleeves against her shoulders and twirled around in a ballerina style spin on one foot while the other hovered a few inches above the concrete floor. The movement made her look just like a ballet dancer too, but in a funny way that would make one gawk rudely and giggle. "Very nice," I commented, trying to keep my chuckle down.

She replied by smiling prudishly, and waved a hand at me in a annoyed state. "You could at least turn around..."

My heart jumped in embarrassment a beat in mid-thought. I suddenly was brought back into reality and blinked away the uncertainty.

"Oh..." I murmured, my eyes glazed, "sorry." I felt the heat rising in my cheeks. I hate it when that happens.

What was...I thinking? Nothing, probably. I tend to do that sometimes, you know - black out for a few seconds, but you still know where you are, but don't have a clue what you're doing. I was swatted at viciously despite how sleepy she was.

I got the point and swiftly turned on my heels to face the concrete wall of her 'house'. In front of me was a small dressing table with four drawers crammed tight with clothing. The wooden cupboard was lined with stickers of Pokémon in different poses. There seemed to be numerous amounts of cat Pokémon... or was it just me?

On top of the dressing table was a small mirror, cracked in one corner. It, too, had a Pokémon sticker on it's surface. But this time it was a Rapidash. Alongside the mirror, was a collection of different, coloured ornaments bundled into a small straw basket. There had to be at least fifty all up. Small, colourful, plastic things, they were. Probably, altogether worth only five or so dollars. But they obviously held sentimental value.

I smiled as my eyes fell over an emerald green Growlithe shaped decoration. Curiously and carefully, I took it into my fingers carefully, though it was plastic, and ran the pads of my fingers over it's intricate surface smoothly.

The feeling of warm breath suddenly lingered at my neck. "You like it?" the voice said quietly.

I turned around to face the not-so-unknown presence. "Yeah," I replied. I looked down at Jessie. If I thought the nightie looked cute as it was, it didn't look half as good as it did on her then. Her eyes seemed to smirk at me, matching her expression perfectly. She sure seemed to do that alot.

"You can have it if you want," she beckoned lightly. My stomach heaved in mixed emotions. Her eyes lowered themselves the other many plastic figurines. "I have heaps of them anyway."

My eyes widened. "Really?"

Jessie simply giggled and said, "Of course." Her eyes strayed from the ornamental decorations and onto the drawer surface. She reached behind me to take something. "And here's..." she produced it, thrusting it in my direction, "your book."

I laughed, accepting the motion and taking it into my left hand, whilst the other held the green Growlithe tightly. "Wow! Thanks alot. I was looking for that."

"You're welcome," she half-spoke, half-yawned. "I'm so tired..." She reached up to rub her eyes.

We stood there for a couple of seconds in silence before I spoke up. "Um... I need something to sleep in..."

Jessie, who was about to fall asleep, blinked a number of times and shook her head out of her daze. "Wha... Oh yeah! Well, I have a couple of shirts that are too big for me. You wouldn't want to wear a skirt or a really tight tank top, anyway." She stumbled towards the drawer slowly and shuffled through the many shirts for a few seconds before pulling out a baggy T-shirt and shorts.

It was my turn to be surprised.

The shirt was big, I'll give you that. It had a thick collar and a rather large pocket that was stitched above a picture of a Clefairy. And the shorts? They were pink.

Pink.

Jessie must've seen my confusion. "They were my birthday present from a guy with no sense of size. So are you gonna wear them or not?"

I reached for the clothes slowly. "Okay," I replied uneasily. She smiled and suddenly became interested in fixing up the sheets on the bed. This gave me time to change.

After pulling on the shorts, I realized how comfortable they were. It's not really like anyone's going to see me. Other than Jessie, of course. And the shirt was a size too big. Just the way I like it.

I walked up behind Jessie after changing and scanning the room, I asked, "So...where do I sleep?"

She turned on her heels as soon as I queried and pointed to a mass of blankets laying in an assortment on the floor. "There."

I blinked uncertainly, "But... isn't that where you sleep?"

Nevertheless, that mischievious smirk spread across Jessie's lips as she flipped the switch and closed the unusual door to her home, plunging us almost in complete darkness. "Well," she said rather brazenly, "you can always sleep outside if it ain't good enough for you..."

Without hesitation, I hastily replied, "Never mind."

Moving across the room coyly to pick up a blanket, she threw me a perplexed look. "Are you going to sleep or what?" The mere movement was graceful... I sighed and followed, only to stop at the foot of her messily made 'bed'.

I blinked. "Oh...yeah." I quickly placed the red diary on the floor, too tired to plonk it onto the already cluttered dresser. Anyway, it was too dark, as well.

With a quick smile and a yawn, I flopped down beside her into the tangle of blankets. Jessie threw the bed linen over us and lay down. I mimicked her action and placed my hands behind my head.

"Hey, James?"

"Yeah?"

I felt Jessie shift position next to me. Her close proximity wasn't helping either. In the process, she accidently flung a misguided arm into my stomach, causing me to inhale sharply. But, she obviously didn't realize.

"I was just wondering. I mean," she breathed out deeply, and pulled the sheets up higher, "where did you come from? People don't just fall from the sky or something. I found you in a pile of snow unconcious, yet that's all I know. And since I've told you my story... you should really tell me yours."

I blinked despite myself. My story? My past? My wealthy childhood of having anything I could possibly dream of? Should I? I gulped nervously. I'll lie, I told myself quietly, and hopefully Jessie won't think I'm lying.

"Well... I'm just like any other person. I grew up not too far from here. But one day, I decided to run away." I said the whole thing quite swiftly. But she seemed to be buying it, smiled and prompted me.

"Why would you want to run away for?"

I swallowed nervously and continued. "I wanted some excitement in my life. Something different. I stole some Pokéballs from the nearest PokéMart and decided to go on my own Pokémon journey."

Jessie moved her leg next to mine. "That sounds cool. I've always wanted to be a Pokémon trainer and go meet new people and new Pokémon. How does that seem?"

Smiling, I answered, "That's great."

Suddenly, something clicked in my mind. "Hey, have you heard of Pokémon Technical?"

"Pokémon Technical? Isn't that an academy for really really smart people who want to be Pokémon masters?"

"Yeah. I've always wanted to ge there."

"Me too! ... But I don't have enough money..."

I listened to Jessie's last sentence and remembered the many thousands of dollars that I grabbed from my parents drawers before leaving. How much money? Thousands... At least ten thousand. That's more than enough for two lots of tuition, according to some of the brochures I've read. I smiled to myself in the dark.

But I can't let Jessie know that.

"Yeah... me too."

With that said, my eyelids slowly felt heavier and heavier. I couldn't help myself as they drooped even lower.

Jessie was probably about to fall asleep as well...

And everything went dark...

:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: :::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: ::::::

Finally. Chapter three is finished. Hey, that's quite an accomplishment for me.

Yes.

I've deleted and redone the whole thing over at least three times now. I didn't like the way it turned out the first two times... Hey, I said I was sorry!

But, I'm just dandy now.

Luv, Destiny Fox.