pokemod: (by koyuki @ DW. [eevee hat])
pokémod team ([personal profile] pokemod) wrote2015-01-07 10:53 am

"The Acorn" for pyrrhocorax

Title: The Acorn
Author: [profile] aetherlingwrites & [personal profile] aetherling
Rating: G
Verse: gameverse
Characters/Pairings: Shaymin and an old man
Summary: Shaymin wanders into the Shire the countryside and befriends an old man. Written for Pyrrhocorax.
Notes: This was inspired by the last Hobbit movie and the agony that comes from shipping Bagginshield. I tried my best to make it seem like not-a-crossover, and I hope you enjoy it! Shoutout to [personal profile] pokemod for running this exchange and their infinite patience with my inability to make deadlines.

“Hello newcomer! Hello friend!” sang a patch of flowers to the curious Shaymin. “Won’t you enjoy the day with us?”

Shaymin looked around very carefully, then gingerly tiptoed through the thawing snow towards the singing flower patch, as not to disturb any fauna that may be sleeping underneath. Because while Shaymin was a curious creature, it was a cautious one as well.

The flowers continued to sing one at a time:

“This is the best hill in the land!”

“Yes, the best!”

“The air tastes better here.”

“And the sun is so warm!”

“Spring is the best time of year!”

“Oh yes!” the entire flower patch chorused. “The best! Indeed!”

Shaymin quite liked the flowers’ singing, and the hill seemed to be a relatively safe spot. It laid itself down with its grassy back fully exposed to the sun, and out popped 3 little pink Gracidea flowers from its back.

“Hooray! New friends!” the flower patch cheered.

Shaymin closed its eyes, and the melody from both the flower patch and its Gracidea flowers lulled it to sleep.

When Shaymin woke up, all the snow had melted away, and fresh grass blanketed the land for miles. The flower patch was still there, softly humming to each other, and they were joined by many tiny white flowers dotting the hill like earthly stars. The white flowers’ voices were little bells; soft and faint, chiming musically in the wind. Shaymin was about to stand up and have a good stretch, but then it heard a door open and close, and the sound of footsteps approaching.

Shaymin’s Gracidea flowers buried themselves into its grassy back out of sight, but Shaymin had nowhere to hide. It quickly pressed itself to the ground and let the grass on its back grow until it was completely covered, save for two spots for its eyes to peek out.

The footsteps grew louder, and Shaymin saw a short old man walking barefoot up the hill. He looked like a man with not a care in the world as he surveyed his surroundings.

“Looks like a lot of flowers grew this year, didn’t it?” he spoke aloud. “And oh! What a curious patch of grass over there. That spot must be getting extra water for it to grow that big!”

Shaymin stayed nervously still. The old man turned his back on Shaymin and headed downhill, to a modest garden located at the base. He hummed quietly to himself, watering the garden under the early morning sun as Shaymin watched, unmoved from its spot.

“Are you afraid? There’s nothing to be afraid of,” said a small white flower. “He takes care of plants and flowers. He won’t hurt you.”

But the flower was just a flower, and for the next few days, Shaymin stayed still, watching every time the old man emerged from his front door to tend the garden.

Spring was over, and summer came at last. The flower patch grew larger and taller, but the melody they sang was still sweet and harmonious. But Shaymin thought the hill was too exposed, too devoid of cover under which Shaymin could hide, so it temporarily took up residence in the garden downhill. It was a most pleasant residence; full of happy, satisfied plants and flowers singing with different voices, and nary a discordant song was ever heard. The garden was right outside the old man’s front door, but Shaymin had determined long ago that the old man posed no threat. And while it no longer hid in a blanket of its own grass, Shaymin kept out of sight whenever the old man was around.

And yet, it knew he knew Shaymin was there. For the first few days after this realization, Shaymin saw the old man watching out of the corners of his eyes. A week later, he left out a bowl of water in the garden, and a little bit of food. Shaymin didn’t eat, but it appreciated the gesture.

Shaymin spent many days watching the old man tend to the rhododendrons and the chrysanthemums and the tulips from tiny buds into blossoming flowers. Combee hummed lazily flying from plum blossom to plum blossom, and Ledyba crawled through the roses, exchanging pleasantries as they passed Shaymin.

The old man was prone to talking aloud to himself as he gardened. At first he only commented about the status of the garden (“Oh, the morning glories have decided to wake up! Hmm, the bush here is looking rather brown. I better water it some more.”), but one day he spoke of guests who will be arriving for tea (“I better set the table for two! An old friend will be coming for tea, but he’s usually late, so maybe at 4 o’ clock…”). Shaymin wondered if normally he spoke to himself that much, or if he was just chatty for Shaymin’s sake. It poked its head out from underneath the bushes, and the old man smiled when he saw Shaymin, but kept his distance and continued pulling weeds from his flowerbed.

Late in the afternoon, a strange man with a most impressive beard walked towards the front door, and entered without knocking. He did not leave until late into the evening. The old man stood by the doorway, waving goodbye to him, and as the bearded stranger disappeared around the corner, a wistful look crossed the old man’s face. He pulled something out from his front pocket, but before Shaymin could see, he put it back in.

Armed with a spade, the old man marched up the hill and began to dig a hole just to the left of the flower patch. Shaymin boldly followed him and watched as he shoveled dirt until a satisfactorily deep hole was made. The old man took the object out of his pocket - an acorn - and stared at it for a very long time.

When he spotted Shaymin watching him, he chuckled softly and said, “You’re probably wondering, why doesn’t this old badger plant his acorn already? It’s not a terribly difficult task is it? I’ve been through worse trials, worse perils, so this should be nothing!”

A brief pause. “But this, this is special to me... I picked it up from a distant land while on my adventures. And I made a promise…” He trailed into silence, still looking down at the acorn.

“He’s long gone now. But I promised him, I promised I’d plant it, and watch it grow, and every time I look at it I’ll remember everything that happened - the good, the bad, those who survived, and those who…”

The old man sighed heavily and after a great pause, placed the acorn into the hole. “I’ll remember him every time I see you,” he spoke to the seed. “Grow big and strong, just like he was. Perhaps some of his stubbornness can come quite in handy too.”

He filled the hole with dirt, and patted the soil flat. Then the old man got up and walked away, looking like he aged another decade.

Eventually summer gave way to autumn. The flowers had long wilted away and the grass was losing its green luster. Winter was fast approaching, and Shaymin knew it would be too cold for anything to possibly grow anymore.

But while everything around it was preparing to lie dormant, a small seedling grew from where the old man planted the acorn. It was a tiny, frail thing with young stems and young leaves, and despite the weather, it grew and grew.

Then a snowstorm hit the land and buried the hill in snow.

Shaymin slept for the entire season, for when winter arrives, it becomes a dormant creature. When it awoke, the snow had melted just enough for the tops of the tallest blades of grass to emerge. Shaymin saw the old man standing on top of the hill, looking down at where he planted his acorn. Shaymin walked over to him, to try and get him to go back inside, or at least wear some shoes, but then it saw what the old man saw: the seedling was no more.

Neither of them said a word--a silent vigil.

Shaymin nudged the old man’s feet, and finally, with slumped shoulders, the old man walked back inside.

Winter gave way to spring at last. Shaymin woke to the sound of many voices calling it over.

“Come look! Oh please, please come look!”

Shaymin dashed towards the noise; it was the familiar flower patch atop the hill. “Over there, look, look!” Right next to the flowers was a seedling, so small it hid well among the grass, but a seedling nevertheless.

An acorn seedling.

Shaymin could have danced for joy, but it chose not to. There was work to be done. It closed its eyes and took a deep breath, focusing its energies on the seedling. When Shaymin finished, the seedling grew rapidly into a sapling, but it didn’t stop there.

When the old man walked out his front door, he cried out in surprise and ran up the hill towards a fully grown oak. He fell to his knees and sobbed, overcome by happiness and gratitude.

Lulled by the flower patch’s song welcoming the new oak, Shaymin slept among the oak’s roots. The pink Gracidea flowers on Shaymin’s back blossomed all at once, making Shaymin look more like a bouquet resting by the tree. It slept for a long time.
pyrrhocorax: dear little breads! (oh my goodness bread)

[personal profile] pyrrhocorax 2015-01-13 03:34 pm (UTC)(link)
what a sweet story! I loved the descriptions of the flowers and their voices, and particularly the description of Shaymin as a bouquet. I bet Shaymin would find it very pleasant in the Shire. thank you very much!
aetherling: (Default)

[personal profile] aetherling 2015-01-20 07:39 am (UTC)(link)
Aww, thanks! I'm glad you enjoyed it :)