The Migration Begins
The first things I feel are the warm rays of the bright sun, shining through the hole in my burrow. The first thing I see when I open my eyes are four balls of brown fuzzy creatures, curled up against my black fur.
I smile happily at my babies, and one by one, I lick their faces awake. They let out small squeals of annoyance and sleepiness, but they open their big, bright eyes and yawn before they each give me a smile as warm as the sun’s rays themselves.
It was almost like on the day they had hatched from their eggs, looking up to see their father and I.
Their father…a Leafeon who had met his tragic end in the jaws of a Luxray.
I stretch my legs and yawn before I look out the burrow’s opening. Slowly, I pull myself out to see the small herds of Bouffant, Tauros, Miltank, and others grazing on the grass which sways in the cool breeze…which seems cooler than it the day before.
Recently, I’ve noticed this change, and it is not just in the wind. The days appear shorter while the nights seem longer. The herds have gotten smaller as they have begun to leave the valley in search of more tender, moist grasses, as the grass that grows here has gotten drier and tougher for their teeth to chew. I’ve noticed that the Bird Pokemon have begun to fly away from this valley as well, as the small bugs they prey upon have burrowed their way underground to hide from the cold temperatures, and the berries I usually feed to my four young Eevee have started to disappear as well.
I’ve seen these signs before…from the days of before I became an Umbreon.
There is less food, and the plants and insects begin to hide from the cold climates. The herds move on when their favorite grasses begin to get less favorable. The days grow short and the night grows long. Even the Pokemon that feast upon the flesh of others begin to follow the herds in order to gain a meal.
Winter will be upon us soon. If my children and I stay here much longer, soon, this once beautiful valley will be covered in a vast blanket of snow. Nothing will be left here for us until the first light of Spring.
I have been a part of this migration for many years…but my children have not ever left their home…and I don’t think they’d want to.
I turn to look at my children, their faces now wide awake.
“We’re hungry, Momma!” my firstborn child, Mallow, says. “Let’s go and eat!”
“Yeah! We want berries!” cries my second born child and only daughter, Chestnut.
“Take us to the berry orchard, Momma!” shout my third and fourth born, Root and Pine.
I sigh. I shouldn’t let my children go hungry before we leave home.
“Follow me, my little ones,” I tell them, and we walk off into the forest with my four babies waddling along behind me. As we walk, I hear them laughing as they tussle playfully as they followed me.
I smiled at this, but at the same time, I am a bit hungry at myself. My children are naïve, and are unaware of any dangers that I have great knowledge of…but it’s mostly because I have shielded them from it all. As their mother, I must pass on the knowledge I hold so that they may use it when they grow older.
We arrived at the orchard, but once we got there…I saw that there are only a few berries left in the trees…and soon, there will be none.
I am thankful, though, that there are enough for me and my little ones.
I stand on my legs to reach the berries on the lower branches, and when I have collected enough, I divide them evenly among my children and myself.
My children eat hastily, as if these berries are the last meal they will have in their lives. In a way, it is. I’m not sure if I’ll be able to find more food during the migration.
At that moment, I remembered I had to tell my children about Winter.
“Listen to me, my babes,” I called to them, forcing them to look up from their food. “These are probably the last of the berries we’ll have until Winter arrives.”
“Momma, what’s Winter?” asks Root.
“Winter is the time of year when the air begins to get colder,” I explained. “The days grow shorter while the nights grow longer and snow begins to fall and cover the grass and plants. The herds of Pokemon like Bouffalant, Tauros, Miltank, and others, and even the birds begin to leave because there are no insects for them to eat. Once Winter arrives, the berries you love to eat so much will not be here.”
They gasp at this news.
“Will the berries come back, Momma?!” asks Chestnut.
“They will,” I answer, “but not for a while. That is why we have to leave this place.”
“But I like it here!” says Mallow, and his siblings begin to shout in agreement, which causes me to scowl. However, I remember that they’re just children, so I regain my composure.
“We have no choice but to go,” I say. “I know the journey will be a long one, and you may grow tired, but there will be more food there.”
That seems to stop them from protesting.
“Will there really be more food?” asks Mallow, and I nod my head.
“Will there be ponds to splash in?” asks Pine.
“And Pidove and Pidgey to chase?” asks Chestnut.
“And lots of trees to keep us cool when it gets too hot?” asks Root.
I nod at every question, and they all smile and begin to cheer, but as quickly as they begin, they stop, and once more, I begin to worry.
“But…we’ll be able to come back here, right Momma?” asks Chestnut, looking at me worriedly, and her brothers did the same.
I smile at them.
“Of course, we will come back here,” I said. “We will return in the Spring, when the snow melts and the flowers bloom.”
Once more, they begin to cheer.
“Let’s go, now, Momma!” says Mallow. “Let’s go now so Spring can come quickly and we can all come back home!”
“Yeah! Let’s go now!” Chestnut, Root, and Pine all shout.
I laugh at this. No time like the present I suppose.
“Are you sure you all want to leave, right now?” I ask them, and they all nod. “All right then. Come along, my little ones.”
I walk away, and my children follow excitedly. As we pass by our now empty burrow, my children stop to look at it.
“Goodbye, burrow!” Mallow says. “We’ll be back when Spring comes!”
“Goodbye, burrow!” Chestnut calls. “We’ll miss you!”
“You can let someone else sleep inside you until we come back in Spring!” Root exclaims.
“Bye-bye, burrow!” Pine says.
Once I again, I smile at their innocence before I continued watched the last of the herds beginning to leave. That’s when I knew my children and I had to follow.
“Come along, little ones!” I call to them, and soon they hurry to my side and begin to follow me away, heading into the forest that leads southward, where warmer weather awaits us.
Our journey has begun.