Last time, on A Pokémon Trainer Is You:
What do you do next?
– Leave Viridian City to the west.
Well, as long as you’re in the Viridian City area, you might as well look around and do some training. After your morning coffee, you and your Pokémon take the west road out of Viridian City and start exploring. The houses gradually thin out, the land begins to slope gently upward, and you follow a river valley into rockier, drier territory, where wild Pokémon scrap over sparse vegetation and small pools of water.
These are the foothills of the Tohjo Mountains that divide Kanto from Johto. The mountains are treacherous and full of extremely powerful wild Pokémon. Turning north from here will eventually take you to the Indigo Plateau, the remote headquarters of the Pokémon League, while continuing west will lead to the ancient, awe-inspiring Mount Silver, the holiest place in all Johto. Realistically, though… you’d never make it. There are no regularly maintained trails through the mountains, almost no rest stops, and only a handful of Rangers who patrol the area. You could get lost, or run afoul of Pokémon too strong for you to defeat, or even just… slip. They might not find your body for weeks. Seriously, kid. You’re smarter than this, right? Come back when you’ve got some serious Pokémon firepower behind you.
Of course, none of that means you can’t hang out in the foothills for a while.
There’s a few things you could do out here, without wandering too far into uncharted territory. You can try for a new Pokémon, of course – the rougher terrain and more arid climate probably lend themselves to different species than the ones around Pallet Town (though of course you can find a Rattata anywhere). Alternatively, a quick survey of the local ecology would give you some useful data to send back to Professor Oak. Or you could spend some time training and bonding with one or both of the Pokémon you already have. Before you can make up your mind, though…
“Hey!” you hear a familiar voice call out, as you pick your way through a gorge full of dry, spiky plants. You look up ahead and see… um… the other guy; look, you know his name by now, right? It looks like he’s on the way back to Viridian City. He must have decided to forgo a relaxing morning coffee and start training out here early. Turquoise(?) clambers down the side of the gorge over some rocks to meet you by the pitiful stream running along the bottom. His Squirtle is at his side, and gives a cheery salute to Scallion, who has been walking with you. You and your Pokémon both return the greeting.
“You’re off to the Pokémon League?” he asks.
You’re not, of course, but you suppose he must have been, so you ask if that’s where he was going.
“Yeah, I thought I’d check out the competition. Pffft,” he says, throwing up his hands in resignation. “Forget about it. The guard at the gatehouse won’t let you through if you don’t have any gym badges.”
Well, that makes sense; it wouldn’t do to have inexperienced trainers wandering into the mountains unprepared. You didn’t realise there was an actual gatehouse, but it’s a good idea, and you say as much to Navy.
“Yeah, I guess, but why d’they even have the Pokémon League somewhere like that? It’s in the middle of nowhere! If the Elite Four are so tough, why do they make it so hard to challenge them?”
You can’t argue with that. You think there’s some kind of historical reason why the Pokémon League is at the Indigo Plateau, but you don’t know the details, and anyway it can’t still be important today. Frankly, Periwinkle almost certainly doesn’t know either, so you decide to change the subject. You’re two trainers meeting in the wilderness, so there is a fairly obvious direction to take the conversation, but you could also ask how his Pokémon are doing, or how well the start of his journey has gone, or (since he mentioned badges) whether he knows anything about the mysterious closure of the Viridian Gym.