Pokemon Fan Fiction ❯ A Blond Ray of Sunshine ❯ Chapter 26
The following morning, Latoshi waited with his brother near the front door. Both boys wore the same attire as when they went to Fern Town. “I'm kinda nervous,” he remarked, rubbing his arm.
“Same here,” Antoshi replied. “They do seem like they're nice, at least from what Mitoshi's said about them.”
“I'm just worried about it being … awkward, you know?”
“You guys ready?” Mitoshi asked, as she emerged from her room. She had on a casual blue summer dress with white polka dots, black bicycle shorts that were just long enough to be seen past the bottom hem of her dress, and white canvas shoes — appropriate 'flying attire' by her standards. The boys nodded to her. “Let's hit the road, then — or, the sky. You know what I mean.” The two brothers chuckled. Latoshi and Mitoshi headed out the front door.
Antoshi turned to Fireball, who was seated comfortably on the couch and watching television. “Are you sure you don't want to come, Fireball?”
"No, it's fine," the Typhlosion replied. "I don't want to be a distraction the first time you meet your family. This is something personal for the three of you. I'll meet them next time!"
Antoshi smiled, warmly, nodding to his friend. “All right, then. There's food in the— well, you already know where the food is.”
"Yes, I do!" he said, proudly. "I'll try not to eat all of it!" he added as Antoshi walked out the door, shutting it behind him.
The blond boy met with his siblings just outside the porch steps.
“Pretty strange how there was no answer again this morning,” Mitoshi said. “Maybe the videophone's on the fritz or something. Also, before you say anything — yes, I'll be able to handle flying on my own this time.”
“Sweet,” Latoshi replied, taking to the air. “Your hand got really clammy and gross last time!”
“Hey!” she shouted at him.
Latoshi laughed as the girl swiftly flew after him. Antoshi sighed in contentment, ascending into the air to follow behind them.
Once again, it took the group over an hour to near close to their destination. They stayed close to the clouds as before, not wanting to startle anyone on ground level with the sight of three flying kids. Antoshi gazed down at the sprawling grasslands and farms far below. In his travels through Kanto, he and Fireball never got to see any farmland. The rich, vibrant colors of different grasses and crops, all neatly set in their divided fields was a visual treat for him. Mixes of various animals and Pokémon, from cows and horses to Miltank and Mareep, dotted the landscape.
“Wow,” Antoshi remarked, in awe. “So, this is Olivine City, huh?”
“Err, sort of,” Mitoshi replied, over the sound of the whipping winds. “We live in the outskirts of Olivine. Olivine City is over that way.” She pointed to the south, toward large buildings of varying shapes and sizes near the ocean.
“Oh,” Antoshi said, “hey, that's just like my home back in Saffron City.”
“We can land at that playground,” Mitoshi said, pointing to it. “Nobody's ever there at this time, especially on a school day.”
The boys followed her lead, touching down lightly upon the playground's wood mulch. Mitoshi sighed happily, jogging out toward the suburban neighborhood before them. They followed the sidewalk through the residential area. The large, two-story houses of varying architectures lined up almost perfectly beside each other on either side of the wide street. The area was quiet and peaceful, with neatly cut lawns and freshly planted trees along the road verges. They headed down a few turns before coming to a unique, brick house.
“Wow,” Latoshi remarked, walking up to the front door with the others, “this is where you live?”
“Sure is!” Mitoshi replied. She attempted to open the front door, only to find it was locked. “Aw, man,” she said, peering through the door's glass. The house was quiet inside. “They don't lock the door unless they went out somewhere.”
“Mitoshi!” a voice called out behind them. The trio turned to see an older woman waving to her. She held a leash attached to a pair of Rockruffs.
“Oh, hello, Miss Heather!” she said, heading over to greet her. The boys lagged behind.
“What are you doing here?” the woman asked, curiously. “I thought you'd be with your parents right now.”
“… With them?” the girl asked in confusion. “What do you mean?”
“You mean you didn't hear? Your parents were in a car accident the other day.”
A sense of dread swept over all three of them.
“Wh—what?” Mitoshi uttered, nervously. “W—What accident? Are they okay? Where are they?”
“Last I heard, they were in North Shore Hospital. I can take you, if you'd like.”
“Oh, uh, yeah,” Mitoshi replied, a bit confused. “Sure!”
“All right, let me put these two away. Stay right here.” The woman shuffled off, calling to her Rockruffs to up the pace.
Mitoshi was very visibly unsettled. The boys tried to keep her relaxed, despite also being deeply concerned themselves. Latoshi, in particular, was fearful that he was going to lose another mother and father. The trio remained awkwardly silent, none of them certain of what to say.
Within a few minutes, Heather came back in a white, four-door sedan. The three siblings wasted not a moment getting in. Mitoshi sat in front, while the boys sat in back. The woman promptly drove off toward their destination.
“Who are your two new friends?” Heather asked.
“Hm?” Mitoshi uttered, lost in thought. “Oh, … it's a long story. I'll tell you all about it after we get back home.”
“No problem, I understand.”
The group remained quiet as Heather drove them to the hospital, each of the young people staring out their respective side window.
The car slowed to a stop near the entrance. Mitoshi left the car in a hurry and dashed inside. Antoshi and Latoshi followed behind, confused and concerned. Mitoshi asked for her parents at the front desk. She was told where to find them, and was directed to the elevators. The three siblings headed inside an elevator car, ascending several floors.
The elevator dinged. Mitoshi could not get out quickly enough, squeezing sideways between the doors before they had fully opened. She sprinted down the hallway, finding the room her parents were in.
“Mom?!” she exclaimed, rushing inside. “Dad?!”
To her surprise, her mother, a woman with long, vibrant blonde hair, was comfortably seated in a chair. Her father, a man with medium-length blue hair and a short stubble beard, laid in the hospital bed beside her. His leg was wrapped in a thick cast and elevated. Both of them were equally shocked to see her.
“Mitoshi!” her mother said. She stood up, almost immediately greeted by her daughter's tight embrace.
“Are you okay?” Mitoshi asked, her voice quavering. “Miss Heather told me you were in a car accident, and I was so scared. I thought— … I thought that …”
“Oh, sweetie,” she replied, wiping the tears from the girl's eyes. “We're both just fine.”
“Mostly fine!” her father interjected, guffawing. “I got a busted-up leg!”
Her mother chuckled. “He's in good spirits about it, as you can tell.”
“They gave me some pretty good stuff!” her father said. “Woo-hoo! Don't mind me if I get loopy!”
“Is it … bad?” Mitoshi asked her mother.
“No, no. They already fixed him up. He'll be here for a few more days, though.” Mitoshi sniffled and nodded. She let go of her mother, drying her eyes. “So, how have you been, sweetie? What made you want to come back home? Did you make any progress on your search?”
“Well, it's funny you should ask that,” Mitoshi said, offering a soft laugh, “because I … well, I found them both.”
Her parents were completely stunned by the revelation. They went silent for a moment.
“Y-you mean,” her mother stammered, “you— … you found …”
“You'd better sit down, hon',” the girl's father said.
“Yes, I should definitely … sit down.” She took her seat, staring blankly at her daughter. She blindly reached for her husband's hand, both of them grasping each other tightly.
“Are you guys ready?” Mitoshi asked. Both of them nodded tenuously. Mitoshi smiled and nodded back. She headed back to the door, finding her brothers curiously waiting right outside. “Come on in,” she said, waving them in. “Mom, Dad, … I have a couple of very special guests I want you to meet.”
Their mother gasped at the sight of the two boys coyly shuffling inside. She held a shaking hand over her mouth. Their father was in sheer disbelief.
“Mom, Dad, this is Antoshi and Latoshi,” she said before turning to her brothers. “Guys, … here they are.”
“Hello,” Antoshi spoke, smiling weakly.
“Hi,” Latoshi added, quietly.
“Oh,” their mother uttered, tears running down her face. “I can't … believe it. This can't be real.” She sniffled, slowly getting to her feet. She approached the two boys, unable to contain herself from grinning. “Hello there,” she said, politely. “My name is Anne. It's so wonderful to finally meet you both.”
The boys glanced to each other, both of them chuckling, nervously. Their mother's hair color was just like Antoshi's. Their father's hair was like Mitoshi's.
She reached down, taking both of their hands in hers. She stifled her sobs as best she could. “Your hair,” she remarked, noticing the same thing of them. “That was one thing I could always … remember. The color is just like in my memories. You were both … so small then. So tiny and so precious.” The two boys looked at her, curiously, while she uttered a joyful sob. “The one thing I've always wanted to tell you, … if I'd ever gotten the chance, was that we always loved you both with all our hearts. We never wanted to … let go of you, but, we had no choice. I always dreaded that when you found out that you were given up, that you would resent us. The very thought was like daggers in my heart.”
“We … don't resent you,” Antoshi said, quietly. “Finding out was … kind of confusing for Latoshi and I for a little while, but, … we understand.” Latoshi nodded in agreement.
Their mother grinned and sobbed, weeping for a few moments as she hugged them around their necks. Both of them grinned, hugging her in return. It was a wondrously surreal moment for Latoshi, to be able to feel the warmth of his birth mother's embrace after having lost his parents.
“I'm sorry,” she said, letting go of them. “I got carried away. It's just that this is something Laurence and I have dreamed of for thirteen long years. We figured seeing you both again was just an impossible dream, and that all we could do was hope that the two of you were healthy and happy and loved.”
“You don't have to worry about that,” Latoshi said. “We were all of those things.”
She sniffled and nodded, smiling from ear to ear. “Mitoshi,” she said, turning her attention to her daughter, “this is … the most wonderful thing you could've ever done for us!”
“Yeah,” her father added, wiping tears from his eyes as well, “we can't thank you enough for this gift, Mitoshi. We love you bunches, peanut.”
“I love you both, too,” she replied, grinning, “and—” she put her arms around her brothers, who smiled at her, “I love these guys, too. They're pretty great when you get to know them.”
“'Peanut'?” Latoshi mused, flashing a cheeky smirk at his sister. Mitoshi groaned, rolling her eyes.
“That's her favorite snack!” their father replied. “Ever since she was a little girl. It was one of the first words she ever learned, too!”
“Dad!” she exclaimed in embarrassment, covering her face with both hands, prompting laughs from the others.
“Well, then,” their mother said, taking a seat once again. “Why don't we all sit down? I'm sure you boys have a lot of questions.”
The brothers found a couple of chairs and dragged them over, sitting across from her. Mitoshi sat next to her mother.
“Well, um,” Antoshi began, “I guess the first question we both have is: what happened that made you … give us up? Mitoshi told us the short version of it, but, … we just want to hear it from you.”
Their mother sighed. “Okay, well, it was about fourteen years ago. Your father and I were living in Ecruteak City at the time. We were there for less than a month before a fire broke out. I had accidentally left some candles burning one night, and it started a fire. … We lost our home. We didn't have any insurance, either, so we were completely homeless. We lost everything — well, almost everything, because it turned out I was also pregnant with both of you. It was a very rough time for us. We were living out of our car, going to work every day, but we weren't sure if we would manage to get by for a while. Then, your father, being as reckless as he is, started buying lottery tickets. I was so furious with him when I found the stubs he'd been hiding in the car.”
“I know it was a terrible idea,” their father said. “I just had hope that things had to get better for us eventually. It was stupid, crazy, foolish hope. I refused to believe that things could get so bad for us without some kind of comeuppance in the end. Your mother wasn't speaking to me for a while after that. Then, … the two of you came.”
“I went into labor,” she continued, “and the two of you brought us both together again. I'll never forget it. First came Antoshi, then Latoshi. You were the most innocent, adorable, beautiful angels I could've ever dreamed of. You both were so cute with your little sprouts of hair. … But, we couldn't keep you. There was no way for us to support you or take care of you the way you deserved. We made the decision to give you both up. It crushed us both so much. I didn't speak or eat for a few days.”
“Things were so frustrating,” their father said. “I was so angry and so sad. Everything was being ripped away from us. It felt like fate played a cruel joke on us. But, as it turned out, our terrible turn of fortune came good fortune. Even though it upset your mother, I continued to play the lottery for a while afterward. Lo and behold, I … won! Not just a few hundred or a few thousand dollars, but the whole jackpot.”
“I have to be honest,” their mother said, laughing, “when he told me, I thought he was lying. I got mad at first. I thought it was some attempt to get me to feel better for a little while. But, he was so insistent. He kept showing me the ticket. That's when I realized it wasn't a lie. We were so elated, but, even with our new fortune, we still knew that our boys weren't coming back. After we moved into our home in Olivine, we got a little overzealous and we ended up trying to have children again, probably a bit sooner than we should've. That's when our baby girl came along.” Mitoshi grinned as her mother stroked her blue hair. “And, so, that's the whole story.”
“… Wow,” Latoshi remarked, after a few moments of silence. He looked to his brother. “That's more than either of us could've imagined had happened.”
“It was unimaginable,” she replied, “and I hope the three of you never have to feel the regret and sorrow that we did. We always wanted you to know somehow that we loved you, no matter how far away you were. I just hope that this gives you boys the answers you needed.”
“It does,” Antoshi said, reaching over to hold his mother's hand, smiling at her. She was surprised at first, but she quickly smiled back at him. She clutched his hand tighter, sighing in relief. “By the way, you said I was born first, right?” he asked. His mother nodded. “So, … that means I'm the older brother?” Latoshi was flabbergasted by the revelation.
“Yes,” his mother replied with a laugh. “By just five minutes, of course.”
Antoshi flashed a cheeky grin to his brother, who cut his eyes back at him. Latoshi fumed, quietly.
“There is one more important thing you have to explain to us, though,” Latoshi said, as mother and son let their hands fall away. “All of us, and all the people who have ever met us want to know: what is the story with our names?”
Their mother and father looked at each other in surprise for a moment, before grinning from ear to ear.
“That was your mother's idea!” he exclaimed. “Blame her!”
“It's true,” she added, with a laugh. “When I was younger, I had this incredible fascination with the historical culture of Ecruteak City. That's why we moved there, because I always wanted to be immersed in it. I wanted to engage in the fashion, the lifestyle, the language of Ecruteak. So, I came up with your names as a symbolic gesture of that. Your names are partially derived from mine and your father's — the 'An' and the 'La' portion. I wanted to give both you boys similar names so that anyone who met you would immediately know you were siblings. Of course, it also helped that you two ended up as identical twins, too. After that, though, we decided to give Mitoshi a similar name when she was born — part of which comes from my mother, Miriam. I … just thought it was a unique and endearing set of names to give you.”
“Well,” Antoshi said, sighing in contentment, “I had thirteen years to get used to the name. I've gotten plenty of laughs and strange looks and positive remarks over it. It's definitely been a unique experience.”
“I do wonder,” their mother said, curiously, “why did your parents keep the names for you both?”
“They liked it,” Antoshi replied. “Honestly, I'm very grateful to them for keeping the name. It means a lot to me.” Anne grinned in elation.
“As for me,” Latoshi said, “I actually had the name 'Declan' all my life. I only learned of the name 'Latoshi' when I saw the adoption papers. … It's grown on me, too,” he admitted, with a playful shrug.
“I'm happy to hear that,” she said, laughing softly. “So, would you boys like to tell us about yourselves? We'd love to hear everything you want to share.”
“That's for sure,” their father added. “It's not like I can go anywhere anyway!” He laughed, while Mitoshi chuckled in embarrassment.
“Absolutely,” Antoshi replied with a grin.
The brothers proceeded to fill their parents in on the events of their lives — from Antoshi becoming a Pokémon Trainer and his kinship with Fireball, to Latoshi's otherwise uneventful childhood growing up in Fern Town. Mitoshi joined in to give a convenient story about finding them both by chance, and to explain some of what happened after the three of them met. The sibling trio carefully omitted any remarks about their superpowers, as well as Lazarus, Collin, and all the fighting that occurred.
Their mother and father were incredibly proud to hear of the tales of their lives. They also comforted Latoshi after the realization that he'd lost his parents in Fern Town. Latoshi ended up becoming fairly affectionate with them. They were the only parents he had left, and he cherished the fact that he'd been given a second chance to be their son. He was genuinely happy in their presence. At some point, a nurse came by to give their father some medication.
“Wow,” their mother remarked, “to have a son that's a remarkable Pokémon Trainer, and another son that's a strong survivor. The two of you have lived such incredible lives already! You're stronger and more beautiful than I could've ever imagined. Seeing you here, after all this time, … it's so satisfying beyond words.”
“My sons,” their father said, with tears in his eyes, “I'm so proud of the young men you've grown into.”
“And, we're happy to have met you,” Antoshi replied, smiling at them.
“I definitely agree with that,” Latoshi added.
“Now, I am fading pretty fast,” their father said as his eyes fluttered closed. “Looks like the meds are kicking in.”
Mitoshi sighed, happily, as she got up. “We should probably get going now anyway,” she said.
The others got up as well. Their mother smiled, brimming with pride, hugging each of her children one at a time.
“This was the most wonderful family reunion,” she said. “Please do come and visit us every so often. We'll probably be back home in a couple of days. I'd love to hear about everything that's happening in your lives.”
“We will,” Antoshi replied, with Latoshi nodding in agreement.
The three siblings said their farewells to their mother, as well as to their father, who was fast asleep. They took their leave, all of them beaming.
“That was a great idea,” Mitoshi said, skipping down the hallway alongside her brothers. “I'm so happy you finally got to meet them, and that it went so well. I'm so, so, so happy!”
“Yeah,” Antoshi concurred. “Thanks for suggesting it, Latoshi.”
“I really wanted to meet them so badly,” Latoshi admitted, staring at the ground, his hands casually in his shorts pockets, “even if I was nervous about it. Knowing that I still have a family, a mom and dad, … it all means a lot to me.”
Antoshi put an arm around him, both of them laughing and grinning at each other.
“I just hope Fireball hasn't raided the refrigerator yet,” Mitoshi remarked.
Antoshi's eyes went wide. “… We'd better hurry on back,” he replied, with a hint of concern in his voice.
A few days passed since the brothers got to meet their birth parents. Outside their cabin at noon, Latoshi and Mitoshi stood next to each other as they practiced punching drills. The boy wore a green tank top with a white horizontal stripe in the middle, and loose white shorts. Mitoshi wore her previous light blue sleeveless shirt with the large Marill print on the front, along with white denim shorts. She looked over at him and giggled.
“I'm finally starting to see your movements!” she remarked, gleefully. “You've been punching three times for each one of mine.”
“That's great!” Latoshi replied, grinning to her. “You're making some serious headway already. I just wish 'Brainy' would come outside and make some headway with us.”
“I heard that,” Antoshi said, as he headed out the front door. Fireball sat on the porch swing, with Bubbles resting beside it.
“Oh, hey there,” Latoshi said, stopping his training. “Finally done with all your homework?” he asked, teasing the boy.
Antoshi sighed in exasperation, approaching his siblings. “I told you, I have tons of free time now, so I might as well get caught up with my home schooling. My parents just sent me a new lesson this morning.”
"I don't get why he enjoys it either, Latoshi!" Fireball called out from the porch. Bubbles laughed, softly.
“Well, big brother,” Latoshi said, sarcastically, “it's good of you to finally join us.”
“It sure is,” Antoshi replied, hopping up and down to get his blood pumping. “I'm feeling really good. Got a lot of energy I need to burn off. I see you're liking those clothes my parents got for you.”
“Heck yeah,” Latoshi remarked, looking down at his attire, while Antoshi did some stretches. “Your parents know how to pick out quality stuff. … You know, Antoshi, after that chat with Serenity, I can't help but wonder how much stronger I can get. I feel like there's huge potential inside me, so, I want to keep on training hard and push my limits. Want to push the limits with me?”
“Actually,” Antoshi replied, sighing, with his hands on his hips, “I have been thinking about that, too. I've given some thought to how much good can be done with our powers. Refining them seems like it would only be beneficial for us.”
“All right!” Mitoshi squealed in joy. “We'll be like … sibling superheroes!”
“Don't get ahead of yourself, little sis',” Latoshi said, playfully ruffling her hair, “you've still got a ways to go before you catch up to our level.”
“Hey!” she exclaimed, pouting angrily. “I will catch up to you two, and I won't stop until I do!”
Latoshi shrugged. “If you say so,” he said, teasing the girl. “It's not that I don't believe you, it's just that you're just kind of a pushover right now.”
Mitoshi growled, her irises turning bright blue, her aura flaring to life with an explosive fury. She immediately went on the attack, striking and punching at Latoshi. He laughed, hopping backward while blocking her attacks with his hands.
“Jeez, you hit like a girl!” he continued to tease her. Mitoshi shouted again, her aura intensifying as she continued to keep up the pace.
Antoshi chuckled to himself, watching the two of them. “I thought they wanted me to train with them,” he muttered, smirking.
That night, Antoshi and Fireball laid awake in their room, gazing at the ceiling.
"So," Fireball said, "things sure have changed for us, huh?"
“They sure have,” the boy replied with a smile.
"Do you wish anything had turned out differently?"
“Well,” Antoshi replied, turning on to his side to face Fireball, “… I would say that I wish I hadn't needed to fight with Latoshi. Then again, doing so made me stronger — physically, mentally, and spiritually. Everything turned out all right for us in the end, so, that conflict is just something the two of us share as part of our history now. … Are you all right with how things turned out?”
"I have to admit, I am a little sad to know we won't be adventuring, going to new towns, and collecting badges anymore. Still, your brother and sister and Bubbles are all really fun to be around. Watching you guys be yourselves with each other is great. It's nice to see you getting along with new people, Antoshi. Especially since, … you know, you didn't have many friends when we were younger…"
“I feel that way, too. It's so great to stay with my family, whom I have things in common with. Plus, I have to give you a lot of credit for making this happen. One more than one occasion, you picked me back up and gave me strength when I needed it. I was ready to … be done with Latoshi. I was ready to walk out the door and never come back when Mitoshi said she was my sister.”
"You were the one that always made me strong, Antoshi," Fireball replied, grinning to his friend. "I only learned how to motivate like that because of you."
“Well, you learned well. Thank you, Fireball. I love you, buddy.”
"Love you, too, Antoshi."
Antoshi rolled onto his back, as the two best friends breathed a sigh of relief together.
In the wee hours of the morning, long before the crack of dawn, Latoshi sat on the big couch in the living room. He was illuminated by the light of the television, watching a repeat of the previous night's news.
Mitoshi came out of her room in her pajamas, rubbing her eyes.
“Latoshi? …” she uttered, groggily. “I imagine you already know what time it is.”
“Sorry for waking you,” he replied, smiling at her. “I couldn't sleep.”
“… continue to clean up the aftermath of the fallen Sun Tower in Goldenrod City,” the news reporter said. “Miraculously, all people and Pokémon inside survived, most of which with only minor injuries.”
Latoshi narrowed his eyes bitterly, unable to take his gaze away from the screen. Mitoshi stared at the television, before looking over at him in confusion.
“What's up, Latoshi? Do you know something about what happened?”
“I know exactly what happened. Collin happened.”
“Collin?” she asked, concerned, sitting on the couch beside him. “You mean … Serenity's brother?”
Latoshi nodded. “The very same one. I met him in the park nearby. I … may have called out his supposed strength, and, … he reacted by bringing down that Sun Tower faster than I could even see — without even moving from where he was.”
“But, how did everyone inside survive?”
“Serenity. She just showed up out of nowhere, rescued all the people in the building while it was collapsing, and kept them all safe somehow after it fell.” Mitoshi was bewildered by the tale. “I can't figure out the two of them, Mitoshi. They have unbelievable power. They're strong on a level I can't even begin to dream of. That Collin guy, … he comes off as calm and friendly and wise, … but, there's something very scary about him.”
Mitoshi bit her lip, watching the news segment with him until it went to commercial.
“Come on,” she said, getting up. “I think we should all try to get some sleep.”
Latoshi sighed, conceding to her request as he used the remote to shut off the TV. The two of them quietly headed back into their respective rooms.
The next morning, the siblings shared breakfast at the counter together, having a pleasant time conversing and laughing together. Antoshi smiled, idly gazing out the window. He witnessed a shadow dart over the cabin for just a second, followed by what appeared to be snowflakes falling. The blond-haired boy furrowed his brow, staring in confusion for a moment. One of the flakes stuck to the window, promptly melting in the humid, summer air.
— End of Part 4 —