Eerie Espurr

Espurr are a well-documented species of pokémon, largely owing to the fact that many feral members of the species roam the streets of Kalos’ largest cities, and many more are kept as pets. While they may appear harmless, cute, even, there are more human fatalities attributed to this pokémon than to almost any other species. The unfortunate victims must not have read its pokédex entries, many of which detail the destructive power of the psychic energy contained by its ears. Espurr’s creepy, vacant stare, along with legends about its ability to cause twisted, astoundingly vivid nightmares, has sealed its reputation as a harbinger of doom.

In Lumiose City, the Kalos Region’s gleaming capital, there lived a boy named Lee. He was quite ordinary. Each day, he went to school and returned home six hours later. He usually played video games in his free time, a pokémon simulator being one of his favorites. At 8:30 PM each night, his mother would send him off to bed. However, one night, just as Lee flicked off his light switch, his routine was interrupted by the arrival of a small, grey-furred psychic-type standing on his windowsill. The Espurr simply stared at him, not moving a muscle. Lee looked back at it, a bit puzzled, but otherwise unfazed. After all, everyone knew that Espurr couldn’t do much to hurt you unless you lifted their ears. Lee tucked himself into bed, uncomfortably aware of Espurr staring at him until he finally drifted off to sleep.

On that night, Lee dreamed of blackness. Not a single photon bounced around his dreamscape. Come to think of it, he couldn’t feel anything, either. He wasn’t standing on anything, but gravity seemed to be ignoring him. He wasn’t sure if he existed here at all. Only one sensory input came to him, which was the sound of a pokémon crying. Sobs and wails pierced the nothingness, gradually decreasing in volume as the source of the sounds began to grow tired.

Just as the last few whimpers faded into silence, Lee woke up. He glanced at his windowsill, breathing a sigh of relief when he saw that Espurr was gone. He slid out of bed and changed out of his pajamas in preparation for the coming day.

That night, Espurr returned. Just as before, it simply stood there. Lavender eyes burned into Lee’s soul, unblinking and eerie. Lee tentatively walked up to the small feline, cringing slightly as he tiptoed forwards. He slowly extended his pointer finger and lightly touched the Espurr on its forehead. There was no response, not even a blink. Lee drew back, his lips curling into a frown of uneasy confusion. Espurr, silhouetted by the moon, continued to stare.

The boy climbed into bed, pulling the sheets snugly around him. He made a point of facing away from the Espurr, but he could still feel its haunting stare on his back.

The moment Lee fell asleep, he was greeted by the sight of a little girl, who was standing right in front of him. Well, maybe she wasn’t a little girl, as the only parts of her face not covered in light grey fur were her perfectly round, lavender eyes. Lee had been hoping that he wouldn’t have to see that face again, at least not until tomorrow night. Other than that, the dream was largely the same, featuring an infinite void and the crying of a pokémon. However, as the end of the dream approached, the pokémon’s whimpering was interrupted by a distant wail of pain.

As the sun rose, Lee sat up in bed, a worried expression on his face. The dream he’d had the night before was strange, but this one was just plain disturbing. Was that Espurr responsible for this? That girl did have its face… Lee decided that it wasn’t worth getting worked up over and proceeded to go through his day as if nothing had happened.

That night, Lee walked into his room, unsurprised to see the Espurr standing on his windowsill, staring with its faintly luminous eyes, unmoving. He gave it a halfhearted wave before climbing onto his bed and snuggling into the covers.

The Espurr-faced girl returned for the dream Lee had that night. She was just as stoic and expressionless as she was in the previous night’s dream. Lee could hear the crackle of flames somewhere in the distance. Just as he was beginning to enjoy the ambience, a scream shattered the tranquility. More and more howls and shrieks followed the first until Lee felt like adding a scream of his own. Several painful-looking burns now disfigured the girl’s face. Despite this, she remained as expressionless as ever. Lee was unable to look away as pus oozed from the injuries, flowing freely across the girl’s visage. The constant screaming was beginning to wear on Lee’s sanity. He wanted to cry, he wanted to run away, but his lack of a corporeal body ruled out those options. All he could do was nothing.

When morning finally arrived, Lee’s sheets were drenched in sweat. He lay there panting for a short while, vowing never to take sunlight or silence for granted ever again. When he sat up, he nearly had a heart attack. Espurr was standing on his windowsill. Its face was stained with sticky black oil; in the same places that the girl’s face had been burnt. Lee could do nothing but stare in shock and horror. When he finally got around to blinking, Espurr was gone.

He pondered the events of last night’s dream over breakfast. At this point, there was no doubt in his mind that his nightly visitor was the cause of his nightmares. But what was it trying to tell him? He’d probably just find out tonight, anyway. With a scowl, the boy left for school.

That night, Espurr was absent from Lee’s windowsill. He grinned happily, glad that the nightmares would stop plaguing him, at least temporarily. After all, if there’s no cause present, the effect can’t possibly occur, right? How wrong he was.

Lee dreamed that he was in Hell. Everything around him was being consumed by a roaring, ravenous blaze. He could barely see through the thick smoke filling the air. Every gulp of air he took in scorched his lungs. Everyone around him was screaming, crying out in pain as the angry tongues of the fire reached them. The little girl from before was among them, but her face was all too human this time. Lee watched numbly as she wailed, becoming one with the flames. Tears streamed down his face. She didn’t deserve that. Nobody did. He just wanted this torment to end. He didn’t care how- he just wanted to leave this horrid pit of heat behind. Bright spots gradually started to appear in front of him, and he began to feel woozy. Everything grew dimmer until the flames were just a pretty orange glimmer and the screams were nothing but faraway sighs. A feeling of calm resignation washed over Lee. Maybe this isn’t so bad after all… The lack of oxygen had finally caught up to him.

A pokémon cried in the distance.

Lee opened his eyes to see a small, grey-furred psychic-type sitting on his chest, its face only a few inches away from his own. As much as he despised that Espurr for putting him through the experience of a fiery death, he had to feel sorry for it, too. He was pretty sure he’d finally put the pieces together. “That was your family, wasn’t it?”

Espurr made no move to confirm or deny this, but Lee sensed that he was on the right track. “And you were that pokémon I heard crying.” The boy stared accusingly at the pokémon, whose stare held just as much intensity. “You can live here with me if you want.”

For the first time since the inferno had devoured Espurr’s family, the pokémon smiled. However, it was a bitter smile, as it accompanied the feline shaking its head no. A moment later, it was gone, never to return to Lee’s windowsill.