February 2nd, 2010
Photoshop and drawingtablet

Some would say Tarim was a bad influence on young little Solly.

When Sandy first got Solly as a Torchic, he wasn't much of a fighter at all. He was lazy, out of shape, easily intimidated, inexperienced and totally lacked the fighter's spirit. But Sandy had big dreams of a future as champ, so that meant Solly was gonna be a champ too. One way or another. She even gave him the fanciful name 'Solaris', to go with his future championship-status. Of course, the name was a little fierce for a tiny Torchic, so until he got bigger Sandy would call him Solly (the name stuck, even after he evolved; so much for tough names).

After training him for several weeks, Sandy decided she could try challenging a gym. After all, that guy over at Pewter City had the reputation of being a bit of a wimp.

After she had Solly had their butts handed to them on a silver platter, Sandy figured they'd need to get another team mate. Having just one Pokémon was a little dangerous anyway. The Pokémon she set her sights on was a problematic wild Meowth in a nearby town, who had the reputation of being a bit of a trouble maker. Supposedly, he also knew a water move. The kitty eluded them for a long time, but eventually Tarim was caught. He was Sandy's second Pokémon.

Now Tarim, the current wannabe-rebel, used to be an actual rebel. At first he tried to escape from his trainer a few times. When that didn't work, he tried to annoy her into releasing him. Over time, however, he grew to like Sandy enough to want to stick around. In fact, he really likes to have his belly rubbed. He likes that a lot, even, though he'll never admit it. He always refers to Sandy as the/my/our 'Human', as if to pretend he's still the independent cat he used to be.

Solly was gullible and naive as a Torchic, and Tarim was quick to capitalize on that. He often set the chick up to mischief, and the two of them would get into a LOT of trouble. For a while Tarim was also the stronger of the two, and Solly admired him for his 'maturity'. Tarim saved Solly's skin a couple of times as well. So he called Tarim 'big brother', which Tarim would hate. Tarim at first intended to, and later pretended to use Solly as his private fall-guy, but in fact he grew rather fond of him. Tarim essentially taught Solly how to behave in a battle, and this helped build Solly's self-esteem. When Solaris matured, they became more like equals. In fact, having become more streetwise, Solly himself would sometimes instigate the mischief and Tarim would cheer him on.

Solly and Tarim are basically best friends now.

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