I don’t know how long it was after I fell asleep, but I had woken up to Agustin shaking me.
“Agustin, what is it?” I asked still tired.
“Rio,” I heard back.
Rolling over, I saw that it wasn’t Agustin, but another Riolu shaking me awake instead.
Sitting up, I turned on the side table lamp and looked down at the Riolu.
“Lu,” I heard it say as it hugged me.
Placing my hand on its back, I looked up and around the room. The only thing that I could find out of the ordinary was the room door was open and the living room light was on. Picking up the Riolu, we went out to the living room.
“You’re up,” Ari said.
“Where’s Agustin?” I asked still tired.
“Isn’t that him?” Ari asked.
“No. The aura is different,” I replied.
Hearing the toilet flush behind me, I turned around to see the bathroom door open and Agustin coming out.
“What’s going on out here, if you don’t mind me asking?” I asked everyone.
“I had woken up to someone knocking at the door,” Ari said.
“Who was at the door?” I asked.
“One of the professors assistants,” Lily replied.
Going over to the couch, I could tell that it was my mentor from back when I started working at the professor’s lab.
“That would explain the Riolu then,” I said. “The question is, why would another assistant come all the way out here?”
“What’s going on?” Agustin asked still tired.
“It’s nothing Agustin, just us talking,” I said.
I felt him wrap his arm around my leg as he stumbled. I chuckled as he tried to balance. After a couple of attempts to stand up, he finally gave up and just used me to keep himself balanced.
I knelt down and helped him balance. Once he was balanced, I set down the other Riolu to make sure Agustin was all right.
“Thanks,” Agustin said.
“Sure thing,” I replied.
“Who’s the girl?” Agustin asked.
“The assistant or the Riolu?” I asked.
“The Riolu,” he replied.
“How can you tell?” I asked.
“By the smell,” he replied.
I felt her snuggle up to me.
“She’s nervous isn’t she?” I asked.
“A little yeah,” he replied sheepishly.
I could tell that he was having some feelings towards the female Riolu.
“Are you feeling ok Agustin?” I asked him.
“Wha~ of course I’m feeling well. What makes you think I’m not?” he said bitterly.
“It’s just the way you were looking at her,” I replied.
“That’s not true,” he replied angrily.
“Yes it is.”
“No it’s not.”
“Why are you defending yourself then?” I asked him.
“I don’t know,” he said looking down.
“You know you don’t have to hide your feeling from me, right?” I said putting a hand on his shoulder.
“I know,” he said. “It’s just…I don’t know what to do at times.”
“It’s alright if you don’t know what to do, you can always talk to me about it. That’s what friends are for right?” I said to him.
“Yeah,” he replied.
“Come here,” I said picking him up.
He wrapped his arms around my neck and pressed his head up against my shoulder.
Looking over at the other Riolu, I gave her a pat on the head to calm her down a bit. She did seem to enjoy the comfort.
“Do you know who the assistant is?” Lily asked.
“Yeah,” I said looking over at her. “She’s my old mentor.”
“Your old mentor?” Lily said.
“She was the one who trained me when I first started working at the lab fifteen years ago,” I said.
“How long after you first started did you meet Lily?” Ari asked.
“About three years later,” I replied.
“But why was it well after you started that you met her?” Ari asked.
“It was my first assignment to gather up some research for the professor,” I said. “I met her mother at the day care center and ended up taking care of her child after she passed away.”
“What is your assignment this time?” Ari asked.
“It’s still the same,” I replied “I’m finishing up my research. Once the storm passes we can head back to Sandgem Town.”
“How long do you think this storm will last?” Lily asked.
“It might be gone sometime tomorrow,” I said. “For now we should get some sleep.”
With that, we went back to our rooms.
The female Riolu crawled up onto the bed and made herself comfortable.
I set Agustin down on the bed and then sat next to him.
“Why is it hard for you to tell me what’s wrong?” I asked Agustin.
“Whenever I do try to tell you, I become nervous and I can’t figure out how to put it into words,” he said.
“It’s alright if you become nervous when you try to tell me,” I said.
“Really?” he asked.
“Yeah,” I said. “You can always try to tell me even if you are nervous. It’s the effort that counts in this case.”
“Why is it the effort that counts?” he asked.
“It counts because of what you try to do and not what you want to do,” I said. “It’ll take time for you to become comfortable at tell me what’s wrong.”
“Thanks,” he said.
“Sure thing,” I said wrapping my arm around his shoulders.
He then wrapped his arms around by body and put his head on the side of my stomach.
“You wanna fall asleep in my arms again?” I asked him.
“Yeah,” he said quietly.
I picked him up and placed my back against the backboard of the bed. He then wrapped his arms around my body and placed his head on my chest.
“I’ll be right here when you wake up, ok?” I said to him.
It wasn’t long after the when the other Riolu woke up and looked around. I watched her as she looked tiredly over at us for a moment and placed a hand out to let her know that she could come rest over by us. She slowly made her way over and snuggled up next to me.
“Go back to sleep, young one,” I said to her quietly as I rubbed her back.
Once they were asleep, I turned off the side table light, slowly began to drift off to sleep as the rain continued to hit the roof of the house.