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Submitted on
December 13, 2012
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Other Pokemon are strange, are they not? I've been alive for longer than I care to figure out, and in that time there hasn't been a single one that I've felt I've truly known. I've gotten along with countless ones, engaged in meaningful conversation with many, worked alongside dozens, and shared my life with a small few. I've gotten a good impression of all of them, some impressions far more accurate than others, but at the very end, when all is said and done, I can't claim to truly know any of them. I know the stories they tell, the ways they live, and even how they think, but I never know the reason why for any of it. I have come very close on just a few occasions, but everyone goes away in the end, leaving me to live on, knowing them as no more than a well-known stranger.

    I've decided long ago that I was tired of that inevitable chain of events, so I've decided to neglect showing fondness towards anyone. A rather cold decision, I will admit, but when you've lived for more than a few centuries and your lifespan's natural end is nowhere in sight, you realize that the best outcome you could possibly hope for in any relationship is to watch your loved one die in front of you, while you yourself show no signs of ceasing. Rather tiring, I'd say. very tiring. After the first few times, I decided that they would also be the last few times. I've gone a hundred years or so like this, and I've wondered more than once if I made the right decision. I always feel justified in the end, though. Their end, that is, not mine. When I see them reach the end of their existence and their life goes out like a pitiful candle, I am thankful to have spared myself any meaningful connection with them. I still wonder though, from time to time, even to this day, if I am being wise to do this.


===============================

    "Hey, Callahan."

    He looked up from his book at her.  "Hm? What is it?"

    Zaru thought for a moment. It had been quite some time since she had initially met him out in the rain, in the darkness. She thought herself a meal at the beginning, but he quickly proved himself benevolent. Towards her, at least. He had offered to teach her how to read, and he had kept his word so far. Day in and day out for the last four months she had been listening to and following his instructions, and she was now able to read most anything she saw in the village. (She still had difficulties with writing though, and suspected she would continue to have them until such a time came when she could reliably hold a pen.) Some, well, most of Callahan's books still reduced her rate of reading to a crawl, but he insisted that at her level, a crawl was much more than he had hoped for out of her for the amount of time she'd been reading. She believed him. She wouldn't say he never lied to her, but he was never malicious or downright mean about it. He always just seemed to be attempting to get a reaction out of her when he did, and would never fail to laugh and playfully chide her for being so gullible. When it came to her studies though, he never masked or so much as thought of altering the truth. She liked him for that.

    She liked him, but didn't know if he liked her. She thought so, maybe. Hoped so, at least. Why else would someone spend so many hours of their life on someone else only to ask for nothing in return? She asked him this once, but in simpler terms, and he simply told her that he liked to read. Pressing the issue didn't net her any more answers, he simply shrugged and said he was above doing things for secret reasons. While she did not doubt that, she still felt as if he was purposely withholding something.

    "Do you want to go out after I finish my studies for the day? I know you don't like berries, so maybe we could go down to the Cafe and get something else."

Would he take her up on the offer? They had never really been out in public together before, mainly on account of him never really going out in public in the first place. Bad things usually happened when he did, whether it be the temperature rising to dangerous degrees, flash fires breaking out.. the only time he really went out was at night, and that was to make the hour or so run (not walk) back to his house, which lay deep within the woods.

    "Sure. I've been meaning to see how they've been doing, especially since they're missing a good deal of their staff! Why don't we go now? It's about the busiest time of night for them, and I would love to see how they're handling it!" He chuckled and closed his book, looking absolutely delighted with himself, and he was.

    She turned away and frowned a bit. She wanted him to want to go because she asked him to, not because he wanted to laugh at or antagonize the pretty friendly volunteer staff. Probably antagonize, she thought. He thought anyone working for free was either a sucker or a fool. That was partly the reason she suspected he wasn’t being entirely honest about teaching her for free, he was no sucker, and he was no fool. She hoped not, at least.

    "I was hoping you would go there with me instead of just to poke fun at the Pokemon there. Would you?" She thought she detected silence for a moment, but wasn't sure if it was just her imagination.

    "But I will be going with you. Were you not going as well?" Another frown on her part, this time visible to him. Either he didn't get it, or he was being difficult again. Whichever one it was, she was tired of not knowing.

    "I was imagining something like a date. I-"

    "Your imagination will have to suffice, I don't date. Not interested. I'm sure you could find someone else who would be more than happy to share some romantic moments with you."

He resumed writing in his book after he had said that, and the moments went on by with no further reply from him, leaving her to contemplate that sudden rejection.

    "You don't date? Do you mean you'd just like to-"

    He paused his writing and looked up from his book at her, causing her to falter. "I'm sorry if I was a bit unclear, but I meant I'm not interested in pursuing any kind of relationship with you. Romantic, passionate, platonic, no strings attached, friends with benefits, you name it. Not interested in you." He returned to his book. "If you want to head to the Cafe still, I'm more than certain you can find someone who will be interested. If you wait too long though, their rush will be over and you'll be left with pretty slim pickings, I'd say." He chuckled again, as if he found that idea funny. She was at a loss for words.

    No matter, though. No more words were needed here. She left without saying anything.


He didn’t look up.
Part one of many in a series of stories involving CALLAHAN and his love life!

Next: [link]
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:iconcrystalitar:
Crystalitar Featured By Owner Apr 15, 2013  Student Traditional Artist
can't click part 2 :(
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:iconlord-siver:
Lord-Siver Featured By Owner Apr 8, 2013
hmm wanna read how it goes on .... poor calla living sooo long and see how everyone dies that would make me think like him
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:iconblackcatlove1:
BlackCatlove1 Featured By Owner Mar 10, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
The next link doesn't work..... :sniff:
How am I supposed to find out how Zaru managed to befriend Callahan??
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:iconmarlkitty:
MarlKitty Featured By Owner Mar 10, 2013
she doesnt
Reply
:iconsoftmonkeychains:
SoftMonKeychains Featured By Owner Mar 6, 2013  Professional Traditional Artist
Amusing. So that's how things are between them. I never suspected the dratini would have a crush on him XD
Ah well all fine, I can see her reasons for her infatuation. Your writing skills are astonished though english is not my mother language and after reading the next two parts, I'm yet to understand the story entirely.
PMD gave fair hints about Callahan's nature: his longevity, his unusual change of fur color between the past and present times, his drought ability which didn't have since too long...
He's an intriguing character I should say. Cutting bonds or sustaining them in a fragile rope so he won't suffer for their loss. Long lifespan is an absolutely horrible curse and no wonder he acts so enigmatic yet still contactable...
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:iconmarlkitty:
MarlKitty Featured By Owner Mar 6, 2013
Life is hard for our hero Callahan. He endures first-world problems every day!
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:iconvelvetblues:
VelvetBlues Featured By Owner Jan 7, 2013
Will we see more interactions between these two? Or did they cut ties completely?
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:iconlexnaught:
Lexnaught Featured By Owner Dec 28, 2012
Huh. It only now occurs to me how tragic Callahans character is, which is, I suppose, the entire point of the first part of the story.
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:iconkryshoul:
Kryshoul Featured By Owner Dec 13, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
aaaawwww poor Zaru ;A;
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:icondeathsbuddy:
deathsbuddy Featured By Owner Dec 13, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
the exciting romance that blooms between callahan and his left forepaw
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