MATURE: The Story of Fritz Westmyn: The Turning World

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    THE CULT OF PERSONALITY System Error's Avatar
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    Default The Story of Fritz Westmyn: The Turning World

    Welcome to a fanfic that has been in the planning phases since late 2009 or so. And there was a lot of planning, let me tell you. Only recently have I decided to get off my ass and try to get it started. Three months later (about half of which was actually spent writing), I have enough written to comfortably begin.

    I suck at these intros, but let's set the premise up, real quick: Fritz Westmyn is a new student entering into the fostering Rukh's University. Now, if you're worried about the academy setting, don't be. This is by no means an academy fic. More on that later. This is a grand story about and told by the titular character in a semi-present tense. It's set in its own canon with its own rules, although it has a blend of others sprinkled about. But take nothing for granted, as there's many aspects of this fanfic that make are going to make it unique.

    Since I'm basically jumping into this biz for the first time, I'd appreciate any comments you have on the story. Suggestions, thoughts, constructive criticism, misunderstandings, insults, and so on. It'll help me find out what works and what doesn't, and improve my writing overall.

    There WAS an Atlas to check out, which contained character profiles and details you may not have noticed in each (by which I mean the first four) chapter. Then it got removed and the forum blocked from viewing too. Thanks Obama.

    I'll update this post with more information as it becomes applicable. Quick tip: keep an eye open for detail. With that being said, enjoy the ride.

    ==========

    Table of Contents:
    Part 1: Welcome to Rukh's University!
    Chapter 1-1: The First Day
    Chapter 1-2: Pokémon of the Lake
    Chapter 1-3: Fame and Infamy
    Chapter 1-4: The Challenge of Cronus Aporon
    Chapter 1-5: The Big Picture
    Chapter 1-6: Latent Reservation
    Chapter 1-7: The Beast Attacks
    Chapter 1-8: Learning Process
    Chapter 1-9: Respite and Spite
    Chapter 1-10: Burning Ambitions

    Part 2: Omnipresent Secrecy
    Chapter 2-1: A Bigger Picture
    Chapter 2-2: Enemies
    Chapter 2-3: In Seek of Sanctum
    Chapter 2-4: Chaos Theorem
    Chapter 2-5: Showoff Showdown
    Chapter 2-6: Heart of Nature
    Chapter 2-7: Pest Control
    Chapter 2-8: Dissident Perception of the Absolute
    Chapter 2-9: All in the Name of Love
    Chapter 2-10: The Ends and Means
    Chapter 2-11: Those Who Pursue Glory
    Last edited by System Error; 3rd April 2014 at 10:25 PM.
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  2. #2
    THE CULT OF PERSONALITY System Error's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Story of Fritz Westmyn: The Turning World

    Part 1: Welcome to Rukh's University!


    Chapter 1-1: The First Day


    All I could see in the faint light of the auditorium was a sea of heads and seats.

    The finer features of the oak wallboards of this fundamentally single-roomed building were indistinguishable from the chestnut-colored velvet curtain shrouding the stage. I couldn't see the ceiling at all. The only source of illumination - aside from the infrequent and temporary natural glow from a few latecomers opening the doors to enter - came from behind said veil, and it did very little to aid the sluggish in finding a seat.

    When I got here, there were only about 10-20 people already present. Now, as I sit roughly in the middle of it all, I can't tell. Maybe like 500-600 or something? The borderline-taciturn banter of those around me filled the stale air. For how long we've been waiting, it was a shock that things hadn't gotten uncivil. But on the other hand, many of the people here come from society's upper class. So it's not that much of a shock.

    I stood up slightly, the seat part folding back inwards a bit as I did so. At least it was comfortable to sit in it, it being akin to something one would see in a movie theater, except they don't have cup holders. I could easily fall asleep in one of these, and if it wasn't for the fact that I was well rested the night before, I probably would have as well. Still, boredom is an exhausting detriment.

    Thankfully, it wouldn't be bearing down on me for much longer. Without so much as a warning, the lights above the stage turned on full blast. I could see the silhouettes of the people in the first few rows shielding their eyes from the intense glare. Finally.

    Out stepped a rather lanky man, in a beige monkey suit too big for him. From his body language, one could safely assume that sleep evaded him the previous night. A tougher one to gauge would be whether he's having a bad hair day, or if his gray hair's short, wirey look is natural.

    "Hello there, and we welcome you to Rukh's University. My name is Mr. Wippleman." he spoke, making no mention of the delay, but his tone gave a subtle suggestion as to the true proceedings behind-the-scenes. "This initiation assembly will be dedicated to telling all of you - our latest batch of students who have enrolled - a little information about our faculty." He had no microphone, his baritone voice filling the room on its own power.

    He delved into unembellished promotion, "As most of you are aware, Rukh's University is one of the more recently created facilities for the education of ones such as yourselves. Established around 21 years ago, it is only two years younger than the town it is in, but has already garnered a reputation as being one of the most well-respected Pokémon education centers garnered towards young adults. Over the many years of its existence, Rukh's has produced countless students who went on to national fame, such as Octavious LaMonte, Flora Merrick, and of course, we cannot by any means forget the man called Bansi - who is now a Gym Leader in the Kanto region."

    Well, I only recognize the first of those. He reached to his left hip, retrieving a bottle of water and taking a swig from it before he continued his speech.

    "For the past three years, Rukh's has been undergoing massive expansion in both student volume and offered courses. Of course, this is all because of the efforts of the new administration."

    As he talked on, I found myself falling out of it a little. I attributed that to being not used to such assemblies. He continued to speak, discussing more of the history, touching on some of the courses offered, and on so. I hardly paid it heed.

    "All of your classes this year will be held within the main building." he eventually stated. "Sciences and Socials are both on the second floor. Art class is on the third. And Battling is on the base floor. Today, you will be headed to those particular classes in the order I just gave - Sciences at 10:00, Socials at 11:00, and after an hour's break, Art will take place at 13:00 and Battling at 14:00."

    He paused, this time not for a drink, but as though he had forgotten what was next. He pulled a stack of cards out (confirming my theory), shuffled through them for a moment, and put them away as he continued.

    "For us all to commemorate this occasion, each one of you has been complemented with an Eevee. How you choose to raise this Pokémon is up to you, but it will serve to help reveal to us your personality, training style, and what you hope to expect from your companions. You may collect your new partner on your way out of the building."

    Just then, a woman came through the curtain. About half a foot shorter than her presumed coworker and also dressed more casually - wearing a plain white, yet tight t-shirt, and blue jeans. She whispered something into Mr. Wippleman's ear, causing his eyes to go wide. She simply smiled, turned, and left afterwards, while rustling her flowing raven hair.

    "I must apologize, but I really have to go now." Mr. Wippleman nervously said. "See you. And, uh, once again, we welcome you to Rukh's University." Then he hastily stumbled back through the curtain.

    That was...abrupt. The assembly is over now...I guess. The other students around began to get out of their seats and disperse. I chose to wait a little longer. I still don't know why I decided to come here. I guess my mind was in a bit of a haze at the time of the decision. But I'm here now...that's a fact I can be sure of. And maybe I'm not the only one who made such a rash decision.


    I waited about two or three minutes for things to clear up before standing to my feet. I stood on my toes and stretched out - a certain necessity after sitting down in a chair, however comfortable, for a couple hours.

    As I was on the approach to the exit, I heard what sounded like an argument. As I rounded the corner into the hallway, I had to suddenly had to halt in my tracks, as a girl came crashing down in front of my feet.

    "Hey, watch it." I said to the group. Two girls - a tomboyish looking blackhaired one, and a slutty looking one in a skimpy tank top and skirt with her blonde hair cut short, and one guy - a dorky redhead in a white shirt and matching pants.

    "Hey," the male began to fire back, only for a surprised look to come over his ginger face. "Wait a sec..."

    I looked down at the girl. She was a kind of pudgy one, though I wouldn't call her fat or curvy. I'd say she's about 5'4'', maybe like 180lbs? She has on a light half-camp shirt that's primarily orange save for the front which is white, and dark blue nylon shorts with a white stripe down the sides. Kind of fair-skinned, and her shoulder-length reddish auburn hair is wrapped a ponytail. She briefly glared at me with her amber eyes before returning her gaze to her harassers, who were now whispering between themselves.

    The girl changed her mind and turned back to me. "Mind your own business..." she grumbled.

    My response was firm, "If you push somebody into me, you've made it my business." I chose to ignore that it was accidental and she never actually made contact.

    "Hrmph, that's...fine, whatever." She trailed off towards middle to let out a snort of frustration. I looked back up, and saw the three were now gone. When she noticed, she simply shook her head and let out an exasperated sigh.

    "What was that all about?" I am wondering...how do you piss off someone so soon after arrival at school? I politely offered my hand to help her back to her feet, but she refused it in favor of picking herself back up.

    "Ugh. Stupid retards were just freaking out." she grumbled.

    "About?"

    She turned and gave me a funny look. It was like she was annoyed, yet at the same time, surprised. That is, surprised in a good way. For a moment, she was lost in thought, but eventually gave me my answer, "Okay. We were talking while the assembly was going on. We were wondering why it was taking so long." She started down the hall, so I followed alongside. "When the speaker came out, we were making fun of him."

    "Wasn't it supposed to start at 8 on the dot?" I replied. And I guess I was wrong. Things were getting uncivil.

    "I think that's right." she said, twirling her ponytail slightly. "But when that woman came out, I made fun of her too. I said she looked like a skank." She paused briefly. "That blonde girl turned out to be her daughter. She didn't like that too much."

    "Ouch."

    "But I stood by it. And that's why they were mad at me." With the brazen way she was speaking, their animosity was no surprise to me. Though, who am I to judge?


    Our conversation had taken us to the door out, where two desks were situated. The ones in charge of the distribution of the supplementary Pokémon were headed by a tall man in a thin, dark gray overcoat. Beneath his ducktail-styled black hair laid weary eyes and triangular nose. The ears of this olive, blotchy-skinned fellow were tilted back at roughly a 20 degree angle. If his expression wasn't stony, he would be pretty intimidating.

    He stared up at the two of us, taking in the sight. He eventually turned to the person beside me, and plainly stated, "Name please."

    "Reika Easton."

    What the- "Easton?!"

    "Um, uh...what do you mean?"

    "Oh...never mind." I quickly said. "Thought I recognized you from somewhere, but I guess not." Ugh. Wow. I never thought...I mean, it's possible there's no relation, but...well, she was startled at my initial reaction, but breathed a sigh of relief when I responded back.

    "Here you are, ma'am." said the man as he was being passed a small, round orb colored red and white by one of his assistants. It was just larger than a ping-pong ball. Another was replacing a sack with the letter E on it.

    Reika examined her gift, and again showed a bit of surprise. "Wait. We each get our own Eevee? Hand-picked for us?"

    The old man nodded, and went into an explaination, "That is correct. We began to do this six years back when one of our...less desirable students...raised a stink over random selection. Therefore, we decided from then on to predetermine who gets what, so that said incident could no longer be repeated."

    "Sounds like he was a spoiled brat." I commented.

    "She. And quite." He scribbled notes onto a clipboard before addressing me. "What is your name, sir?"

    "Fritz. Fritz Westmyn."

    "I see." said the man, retrieving my gift at a much faster rate than Reika's. "Here is your Eevee, Mister Westmyn. We hope you can enjoy your time here at Rukh's University." He firmly placed the Poké Ball into my hand.

    "...okay?" He was really unnerving...all right, moreso than would be typical. Maybe it was just me. I looked and saw Reika attaching her capsule to a holster of some kind. Once it was in place along the three others, she placed it back on her hip. I simply slipped mine into my pocket. I really don't get those things.

    "What's with the fancy strap?"

    "It's useful." she plainly told me.

    I nodded. "Come on, let's go." I said to her. I walked out of the doorway and into the outdoors.

    ----------

    The morning sun was only just rising over the apex of the nearby hills, but stepping out into it after being in that darkened auditorium for a couple of hours made it all the more brilliant for a few moments. The sky had only a few cumulus clouds adorning it.

    "Hmm. A nice day." Reika quipped.

    "Yeah." Truth be told, I wasn't really expecting to make a friend so soon after arrival. It was a pleasant surprise. "Well, I think we got about half an hour before class starts. Want to go check out the grounds before then?"

    "I have to go do something!" she said with an unseemly haste. Her next words were apologetic. "So...sorry." She then hustled off with purpose before I could say anything in response.

    Oh well, maybe I'll see her later. As I took in the scenery of the diverse grounds, I involuntarily shuddered at sight of the massive surrounding walls. They may have been built with the intent to keep out people...but from within, it almost felt as though they were constructed to keep them in. The auditorium I just exited is situated at one of the corners, and a stylistic tower in shape of the roost of a bird certainly didn't help to drive off that image I was getting.

    Instead of following the winding path back up to the main area of the school, I chose to go straight ahead towards the spacious field. A path not a lot of people have chosen to walk, it appears. A few students were present, chatting, lounging, and allowing their Pokémon to frolic about. I thought about doing the latter, but decided against it in the end in favor of pressing on.

    A few minutes of walking later, and I came to a sight to behold. Right there on the school grounds lied a clear, sparkling lake. A respectable sized body of water, the tall walls tapered off before its shores; a plain chainlink fence served as a supplementary barricade. A small walkway was constructed around it and allowed for students to stand near, a necessity given how dirt and rocks (mainly the latter) comprised its natural shoreline. Larger rocks were stationed in the water amongst the lilypads and water reeds. The source of the lake seemed to be in the forest beyond, The finer details were really hard to get a good look at, as the sun was hovering in just the right spot. Even covering sight of it did no good - the bedazzling reflection in the water also blinded me. Still, it was a pretty sight. With a nod and smile to myself, I turned to leave, heading towards the buildings...

    ...and just then, a torrent of water hit me in the back.

    The subsequent fall wasn't too rough, as I was falling onto grass, and got my hands out. I scrambled to my feet as quickly as I left them and glanced at the direction it came from. The identity of my assailant is...hard to discern, as most of its body is beneath the surface. The reflection of the sun didn't help matters either. Well, with this having happened, I figured I may as well give my new acquisition an early workout.

    Out from the ball emerged a small brown fox with covered in fine beige fur - the cream-colored mane around its neck appearing particularly elegant. Sharp yet languid ears and a big fluffy tail stand among two of its more distinguishing features. Its eyes gleamed with a lovely, charming innocence. This was all topped with the most adorable little smile, momentarily beaming brighter than the sun.

    You might be wondering about the temporary nature of that last part. That's because a second after catching sight of its adversary, it let out a whine, immediately clinging behind my leg, as a child hiding behind an older friend. This Eevee is a cute one...but battles don't appear to be its strong point. With a sigh, I recalled the tiny critter into its sanctuary. The lake Pokémon seemed amused by this and broke into a fit of laughter. All I could see was its toothy mouth...

    I reached into my pocket to retrieve another capsule. I don't know how to describe the contents of it. It's kind of like a cross between a horned lizard, a rhino, a warthog, and a hare. It has coarse, scaly, spiny skin tinted an off-cyan that reminds of the first of those, but the shape of the body and in particular its large ears bear a resemblance to the last of them. As for where the rhino and warthog come in, it has a single, dull horn on its forehead similar to the former. Finally, its face and snout, although as jagged as the rest of its figure, is quite near to the latter. I do have to wonder who the hell decided to call this mess of DNA a Nidorina.

    My Pokémon took one look and turned to me with a flabbergasted look on her rugged face. It might be a bit much to ask...but it may be the most reasonable choice I have. But since its performance in the water would be subpar...I'm guessing I'll have to attack from afar?

    So, "Nidorina, Poison Sting?"

    Hearing my command, Nidorina began to tremble, loosing a number of the spikes from her body. She then strained herself, tensing up in order to make the needles launch out like the head of a popped pimple towards their target: the lake Pokémon...

    ...who promptly evaded with a galliant leap that exposed its long, slender form - although the details of it were still obscured by the glare. When it splashed down, it immediately raised its face and returned fire with a Water Gun. I don't know if Nidorina saw it coming, but her ears twitched, so she must have heard it. The amalgamation hopped to the right to escape the attack. It then launched a few more needles, which were again evaded, though this time without a fancy leap and only by swimming to a different spot. And again, its spray also met the same fate of a simple dodge. This is going nowhere fast...

    A quick review of my location, and my attention was drawn to the trail of large stones lining the surface of the water. They looked flat enough at the top...flat enough to stand on. I figure maybe I can use those to gave Nidorina get in closer? Only one way to find out! "Nidorina, see those rocks?" I asked, my Pokémon examining them as confirmation. "I want you to try jumping across them to get in closer."

    Again, I got a stunned look, the "what the hell are you thinking" glare, but it went to obey all the same. Nidorina began by carefully climbing on top of the first slab, as the lake Pokémon simply floated there watching. With cautious hestitation, Nidorina carefully lined itself up with the second of these before leaping off onto it. She landed clean on her feet. It took a little longer for my Pokémon to make her way to the third of the stones, but it did so with the same success.

    She was looking to line up the next leap, when a sick grin spread across the face of our adversary. I saw it, but before I could warn Nidorina, the blast was already headed its way. The good news was, she again heard it. No time to think, Nidorina only acted, making a third jump, then a fourth, then a fifth, with no pause until the last, where it slipped. The lake Pokémon saw this and swam in for the kill.

    Its eyes were much faster than its body.

    Nidorina dug her claws into the rock as she was sliding off, giving her the leverage needed to climb back up. With this development, the snake-like creature decided to take a different approach - almost egging us on by moving near the end of the trail of platforms. Two more jumps...Nidorina looked ready to make the next set, when something occurred to me.

    "Nidorina, Poison Sting!"

    This volley made its mark before it could get out of the way, buying us the moment we needed. Nidorina jumped to the next rock, then to the last one, mouth open and ready to strike. But just as it got there, the lake Pokémon's eyes went wide, and it dove below the surface.

    For a few moments, all was silent. Nidorina held her ears high for the sound of its foe's re-emergance...and when nothing happened for half a minute, angrily stamped the platform. Looks like it's gone...ugh. I thought I was going to get my first victory here, too. Reluctantly, I retrieved Nidorina's ball, aimed the center towards the creature, and pressed the button to fire out the red beam that recalled it - saving it a trip back.

    I heard a beeping tone a moment after. I looked around in initial confusion, before coming to the conclusion that that was supposed to be a bell. "Is it time for class already?" I said to myself. I didn't spend that long out here, so they must have been REALLY late with the assembly. No time to look around at all, which disappointed me.

    I examined the main building - an impressive, four-story sight to behold, even from the side. With little time to take in the sight of it, I made my way around and to the front doors...the first class of the year was about to begin.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~

    Sciences class...a slightly deceptive course, as the main focus was at the onset stated to be the Biology of Pokémon. Several rows of single desks lined the middle of the ample-sized second-floor classroom, numbering 209 in total, although not all of these were taken. There was also quite a bit of empty space at the back of the class. Cabinets and sinks were situated on the sides.

    The hour had passed quickly, and before I knew it, I had only 10 minutes to get to the next class. As with the assembly earlier in the day, I was in no rush, allowing others to leave before me to avoid the crowding.

    As I did get up to leave, I spotted a familar face in the far side of the room. Pushing my seat back beneath the desk, I crossed through the small maze created by strewn chairs to get near before calling out.

    "Hey, Reika!"

    She turned to me with utter revulsion and began to snap, "What the f-", until a look of recognition washed over her face. "Oh, it's you."

    "Glad I found someone I know in this class." I said with a smile as I walked over to her. "I didn't think it was possible for science to be that boring."

    She scoffed at my statement. "I always hated it. I can't believe they're making us take it the first year."

    "It's not that bad." I shrugged, disregarding the dirty look I got as a result. After a moment of thought, I remembered something. "Hey, if you don't mind me asking, what did you run off for earlier?"

    She wordlessly stepped back to present a short, bespectacled boy with finely combed black hair. He was dressed...creatively, to put it one way. The jacket he wore had a black backside, but the primary color was teal. The zipper wasn't done up, revealing his white undershirt which sported a stylised cicada design on the front. His pants were really something, featuring caterpillars. Stubby red and white larvae with eerie yellow retinas were intertwining with lumpy worms tinted green and yellow with a soft black gaze, as if they were dueling serpents.

    "Um, Reika? Who's this?" he timidly asked, his emaciated arms trembling a little as he stared at me.

    "Well..." she began, going into an explanation of how the two of us came to meet. The boy nodded periodically, gradually becoming more composed.

    "Okay. So you're Fritz." he said with much higher security. "My name's Thatcher."

    "Nice to meet you." I offered a handshake to him. He stared at it for a moment, before meekly accepting with a loose grip.

    "Lucky we're all in the same block." Thatcher pore over Reika and myself. "So, uh, Fritz," he queried, his nerves again returning. "Um, is your shirt wet?"

    "Oh, that." I hadn't noticed the aftereffects of being hit with a Water Gun that much, really. Now that I check, my green and white T-shirt was still a little damp. "After Reika left, I went into the fields for a while, just to like, check the place out, you know? I eventually got to the lake. That's where this Pokémon shot a Water Gun at me, and it was laughing over it." I paused for a moment, before being struck with an idea. "I'm not sure what it was, though. It was long and blue, and I think it had fins on its head. It eventually went away, then the bell rang, so I came here."

    Both of my friends went into thought. Reika looked over her left shoulder and into the air, while Thatcher lowered his head. He was the first to speak up. "Hmm...could it, maybe...it could have been a Dratini?"

    A Dratini is indeed a long and blue (and white) Pokémon, and is quite snake-like. From a glance, one would believe its body to be hard and scaly, but it is in actuality soft and slimy. While it doesn't have fins, I could've easily been confusing its pale odd-shaped ears for the same. There's just one flaw in his theory, which I casually went into. "Could be. But it also had a big jaw. What kind of Pokémon just sprays water at people for no reason, anyways?"

    "I have no idea." Reika grumbled. "Maybe the teacher would know?"

    Well, he's a professor of Biology. But I'd imagine that Pokémon behavioral patterns is part of the study of Biology. "That could work, let's go."

    The three of us approached the iron desk at the front of the class. It has that look that says it's been through a lot, having nicks, rust, and signs of weather damage. Perhaps the reason why the man hunkered there kept it is the numerous compartments offered. "Um, Mr. Sphogkettle..." Thatcher began, only to be cut off.

    "Zat is Doctor Spfogckdl." he said in a thick German accent. His strange and difficult to pronounce (and spell) name notwithstanding, remember how I said the class was boring? With a look like his, it was all the more deceptive. He looks just like one of those crazy dudes who could make anything fun, and easily qualify as a mad scientist if he was evil. Vibrant, cloudy eyes, a huge grin, and puffy white hair decorating the back of his skull were just three of the features of his eggplant-shaped mug. Over his body, he wore a lab coat that looked once a yellow, but dirt and fading had taken their toll over time, making its current hue closer to a brown.

    "Right, so Doctor..." Reika said, not even bothering with attempting to pronounce his name. She then gave an explanation of what had happened to me.

    "So you zay your friend zaw a long blue Pokémon with big teeth and fins? Zat sounds like you zaw ein Gyarados." The teacher placed some papers into a drawer, which he closed and locked. He then arose from his chair and moved towards the door. "Now, if you drei will excuse me, I mus' be getting going. Zis is the period where I get mien break."

    As soon as he had left, Reika gasped, "A Gyarados?! In the lake?!"

    "If you really did see a Gyarados, Fritz..." Thatcher was also surprised.

    As they were talking, someone passing by stopped in the doorway. Older than us. Not a strand of the short brown hair on his head was out of place. Even his sideburns and small beard were kempt. He had on a red and silver jacket marked by the school's insignia (a stylized bird of some sort), plain blue jeans held up by a brass belt lined with five Poké Balls, and black and white shoes. He was around 5'7''.

    "You guys say you saw a Gyarados in the lake?" He cocked his head, speaking like an older brother would to his younger siblings.

    Thatcher stammered as he tried to explain, "U-um, we're not sure...it's just that our friend here got attacked by a Pokémon who sprayed water at him, s-see. It was long, and blue, and it had big fangs...the teacher thinks it might've been a Gyarados."

    '"Hm. A Gyarados." He stroked his tiny goatee with thumb and index finger. "It's a pretty strong species, you know...you sure you guys would be able to handle it?"

    "Oh. I'm sorry. Have we met?" I sarcastically replied. My insolance made him go from collected to enraged in half a second.

    "Watch your mouth, kid! Do you know who I am?" he said, standing taller, prouder, and pointing to himself.

    I shook my head. "We're new students. So no, I have no idea who you are."

    "Ah, that's right." he relented, shifting back to his initial demeanor. "But we're talking about a powerful dragon-like Pokémon here. You guys wouldn't be able to handle something like that."

    Not laying off with my tantalizing demeanor, I fired back, "And what makes you think you'd be able to?"

    "I thought I told you to watch your mouth, kid." This time, he seemed more annoyed with me than wrathful.

    "Answer the question." I persisted.

    More annoyance, as he pointed a finger right at me. "All right, listen, freshman."

    "Westmyn."

    "I don't care who you are! If there's a Gyarados in the lake, I'm going to catch it." He thought about this for a second, before revising, "Actually, I think I'm going to catch whatever it is you saw, even if it isn't a Gyarados." The guy's parting words were each delivered with more emphasis than the last, "So stay. Out. Of. My. Way."

    He never took his scowl off me, with me returning the stare in kind, until he took his leave. Instantly after he was gone, someone grabbed my shoulders and whirled me around. "Fritz!" Reika yelled, "What the HELL were you thinking?"

    "He was being an asshole!" I defended. "What was I supposed to do?!"

    "I know, but you can't talk that way to him!" she firmly scolded me. "Are you TRYING to become an outcast?!"

    I gave her a confounded look. "What are you talking about?"

    Thatcher was more collected about this incident, and clarified it for me, "Fritz, that was Cronus Aporon. He's a fourth-year student here." It wasn't clear if his quiet voice trembling was natural, from fear of association with me, or rooted in awe. "Cronus is on his last year, and is one of the best battlers that the school has. The crown jewel of the University - um...their words, not mine. He's one of the most popular students at Rukh's."

    "But he's an asshole."

    "That doesn't matter!" Reika shouted at my deadpan snark.

    I sighed in exhasperation. There's no pleasing her, I guess, but on the other hand, I don't know what came over me there. "Let's just get to our next class. It's Socials, isn't it?" Thatcher nodded. "That's just down the hall on the left here."

    As the three of us made the right turn out of the classroom and began walking down to our destination, I lowered my head in thought. So this is my new life. A student of a university in Sinnoh. It's not as exciting as I would have liked...but at least it's something, right? Things could be worse. I've made two friends already - Reika and Thatcher. That was a nice surprise, and they seem all right. And I've an enemy in one Cronus Aporon. Also a surprise, but not too pleasant of one. I have a new Pokémon with me...a cute, if unconfident Eevee. A Pokémon with many ways to raise it, but I don't know what I'll do with mine.

    One thing's for sure. From the moment I arrived here, I had this feeling. I don't know how to describe what it is or why it's there, but it was a feeling that this is the prelude to something huge for me.

    After all, it's a big world out there.

    Whatever the future holds, I'm ready for it!
    Don't know what to put here.

  3. #3
    Poet Laureate AiedailEclipsed's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Story of Fritz Westmyn: The Turning World

    I liked it! I like the characters and the complex dynamics that they have. I can't wait to see how some of them play out and to see the backgrounds of other characters! I especially can't wait to see how some other characters come into play. ;) I remember catching some errors but nothing major.
    "Be careful what you wish for, because you just might get it."
    -- Narrator, Pokemon: Jirachi Wish Maker
    "You can't change the world without getting your hands dirty."
    -- Lelouch Lamperouge, Code Geass: Lelouch of the Rebellion
    "Do I have a stamp on my forehead that says, 'The National Spokesperson for the Plight of Black People'? How the hell should I know the black perspective on The Color Purple? That's it, if I don't change classes, I'm gonna hurt this fool. Teachers treat me like I'm some kind of Rosetta stone for African-Americans. What? Black people learn how to read, and we all miraculously come to the same conclusion?"
    -- Victoria, Freedom Writers
    "N's heart is pure and innocent. But there is nothing more beautiful and terrifying than innocence."
    -- Concordia, Pokémon Black/White 2

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    THE CULT OF PERSONALITY System Error's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Story of Fritz Westmyn: The Turning World

    Chapter 1-2: Pokémon of the Lake



    As I sat in Socials class with Reika and Thatcher, all I found myself able to do was look out the window and sigh. I could just barely make out the edge of the lake outside. It never occurred to me to actually try and catch that Pokémon in there. But seeing that 'Cronus Aporon' want to do so...it sort of lit a fire inside me. And now I want to try and get it. I'm sure I'll be able to. But the problem, of course, is that I am currently in class, and come lunchtime, if he's anyone meaningful at all, he'll be right on it. I don't know if I'll be able to do anything then...

    On the subject of the classroom itself, I'm surprised it's able to fit 200 or so people in it without feeling cramped at all. It's not nearly as spacious as the setting for the class prior. Large black desks were lined orderly in the room, seating around 5-6 students apiece. The chairs outnumbered the students in any case. It just so happens that the three of us were among the ones who got stuck by ourselves, but then again, it made it kind of cozy. By contrast, I spotted a few desks that were willfully overstuffed by large groups of chattering friends. At the very front of the room is an elevated section, where the teacher sits from behind his polished wooden desk. It was the fanciest fixture in the room, I might add - the walls were a plain white and the floors a patchy beige. There was a blank whiteboard, and hardly any decor on the walls aside from maps of the country. It was as the very definition of bland.

    "Hey," Thatcher said, poking me with a pen, snapping me back to reality. "What's the matter?"

    I gave no response and only continued to stare outside the window. He silently nodded, I guess to show that he understood the message.

    Reika, on the other hand, took a far different stance on the matter. She continued to write on the small assignment we'd been handed, not looking up at me as she advised, "Fritz...look. Just don't bother, okay? You're only going to make things worse for yourself. You're already in enough trouble from trying to talk him down."

    "Coming from the great Reika Easton, that means something." Thatcher snickered.

    "Thatcher!" she giggled, not bothered by his wisecrack in the slightest.

    "Hmm..." I crossed my legs as I mumbled this...and that's when an idea came to me! I stood to my feet and made my way to the front of the class. I stepped up and spoke to the one in charge.

    "Mr. Yamaguchi, may I be excused to go to the bathroom?"

    The teacher of this class...at the beginning of Socials Class he announced himself as 66, but from his face you'd think he was at least 40 years older. Dressed in a formal double-breasted red and white waistcoat with matching dress pants, he has horribly wrinkled tan skin spotted with dimples and bushy gray eyebrows that dwarf his crescent eyes. I'm unsure if he's just skinny, or if the ridges on his skin were simply giving his arms a boney semblance. The only hint of youth on this man was that he still had hair on his head, albeit only a tiny amount at the very back.

    "Yes." He said in a calm, scratchy voice. "But do not take too long. There is much to learn in my class." His mouth curled as if he'd been ingesting nothing but lemons, a revolting sight that aided in the next phase of my act.

    "No promises..." I groaned as I dashed off holding my stomach. I almost wanted to go at that point.

    I hurriedly exited, made a right through the hallway, past a set of washrooms and a History class, and turned left down the nearby flight of stairs to the main floor. From here, I left the building via a side-door...although technically, it's on the backside of the building.

    I wasted no time in taking in the sight of the outdoor battling grounds as I made the counterclockwise jog round the building. It wasn't too long before I made it over to the lake. I don't know if it's hanging around there, but I think I can draw it out. I went to the shoreline and reached into the water, retrieving one of the numerous rocks. I then hurled it as far as I could throw it...


    ...and nothing.


    I repeated this process. Again. And again. And again. I tried a few different things. Skipping the rock across many, many times, trying to throw it just over the surface, throwing it straight where I initially saw the creature, and so on. I'm not sure what I was trying to accomplish by doing this...goading it into trying to swallow the rocks, perhaps? Maybe I should've brought a Water-type of my own, ugh. Is this even worth it? Maybe it is better to try to go for it when I'm better prepared...I mean, who's to say it'll show itself for Aporon too? I thought all that, and turned to leave. I'd probably already been away long enough, anyway...

    And as soon as I turned around, I heard the sound of water rushing towards me. Half expecting it, half not, I managed to duck out of the way just in time. I nearly lost my balance as I tried to whirl around simultaneously to stare down my foe, ending up in a full squat. All right, let's get this bad boy. I retrieved the Pokémon I had in mind from my pocket, standing to my feet as I released it next to me.

    The face and legs of this one were a gray-ish cyan, the latter adorned with tiny bright hooves. They aren't the only part of its body to match though, as its long, rounded ears and tail were also the same color - both alternating twice between a dusty teal and golden brown. Again, the latter of these had decor; in this instance, a translucent garnet that sparkled on both the inside and the outside. Its most distunguishing feature by far, however, is the fluffy, buldging mass of cotton enveloping its entire body. I can count at least three tones to it: plain white, a corn-colored yellow, and last and least, a dark goldenrod. It stood ready, the bumpy gem on its tail raised high as it stared down its foe.

    The reason why I hadn't used it to begin with was for practicality purposes. But with nothing to lose and everything to gain now, I gave the word, "All right Mareep, let's see what you can do! Thundershock!"

    From within the packets of its fleece burst a jolt of electricity, arcing out to...hit the shoreline opposite us.

    After my initial surprise at how far the attack went wore off, mild chagrin set in. After an awkward pause, I was more specific, "Thundershock on that Pokémon. Not on the other side of the lake." I know it's not its fault, but still.

    Mareep's second attempt was again way off course, this time colliding with my leg. I cringed a little in discomfort while the blue thing broke out into uncontrollable laughter. Was it seriously just patiently watching this entire time? No wait, it actually moved in closer, as if to taunt us.

    A volcano erupted in Mareep's beady black eyes. Its entire form momentarily burst into a golden light as a massive Thunderbolt surged out of its body and in the direction of an oblivious Pokémon of the lake.

    This...didn't find its mark either. But it was only about a foot away, and water conducts electricity. So close enough? What matters is that it was now floating silently, jaw agape on the surface of the lake like a reed hanging from a lilypad. Mareep was panting after that move, but seemed to be pleased with its efforts.

    I retrieved an empty ball from my pocket, and much like the stones prior, gave it a good toss. Upon contact with the Pokémon, it burst open, sucking in the form of the snake-like creature, and falling with a light splash to float on the surface of the water. It shuddered silently, the only indication that it was doing so being the ripples generated from the motion. It halted eight seconds after and remained still. I had a new Pokémon. And conveniently, its convenient mocking of Mareep by moving forward to make aiming easier allowed for an easy and mostly-dry retrieval.

    I gave the downy sheep a quick pat on the head before recalling it, slipping both capsules back to their designated locations. Having accomplished what I set out to do, I retraced my steps and hustled back to the school.

    As I went into the building, a quick glance at a clock situated on the wall on my left revealed that I was out there for only ten minutes. Didn't feel that long, but all for the better. I went up to the second floor and back into Socials class.

    "I'm back." I whispered to my friends as I sat down.

    "What took you so long?" Thatcher queried.

    "Let's just say that thanks to my Mareep, Aporon won't be catching that Pokémon." I grinned.

    "You lied to go capture a Pokémon?" Reika was shocked. Not in her usual way either, this was her reacting like I had just done something really, really wrong.

    "No, I did have to go to the bathroom. I just figured there were more important things to do." I slyly presented a variant of the cover story I planned to use, in case I was questioned about it.

    It was honest, but didn't platicate her. "I don't like liars, Fritz..." She at least believed what I had to say. I didn't respond to this, to avoid aggravating her further. It's not like I did something inexcusable...right? At least from the expression Thatcher had, I could tell at least one of my friends supported me.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~

    The rest of Socials Class passed without incident or note. The subject of my sneaky preemption was dropped in favor of the assignment. We had to make a map of the country, and I probably did horribly, but that's okay.

    When the class ended, it officially marked the start of lunch hour. The three of us left the impressive and massive main building of Rukh's University. Despite this facility being a reasonably modern one, its exterior was granted a turn-of-last-century design. Only the windows looked anything close to recent on this four-story structure.

    On either side were two smaller, similar-looking buildings. More contemporary, they were a ruddy brown color with whitish tiled roofs. The left of these from this point of view are the dorms for first year students. Straight ahead, one could make out the front gates of the University, where two further buildings stood. The right acts as the cafeteria, whereas the left was once a school shop, but was closed down this year. Presently, the building is in continued disuse. But the most notable part was situated in the middle of all of this.

    The Student Square (actually more of a rectangle) is between the main buildings of the campus, marked by the many steps leading down around the perimeter. It's very well maintained - not a single weed was growing between the cobblestone. Various places to sit are strewn about, both formal and makeshift. Decor, including a few sculptures of Pokémon, a working fountain, and rows of planted trees added to the Square's atmosphere. The framework for a new building on the right side was the only eyesore on an otherwise friendly and inviting place, yet may have been reason enough as to why not a lot of our peers were hanging out here.

    We were about to find a place to sit down, when Reika spoke up. "I need to eat. Let's go to the cafeteria." She began to walk in its direction, neither Thatcher nor I following her lead.

    "I don't think that's...if that's something we can...do." said Thatcher as he adjusted his glasses.

    She halted in place and turned to face him. "Why not?" she curiously asked.

    "I overheard some girls talking in class...they said...the food in the lunchroom...it was bad." That must have been when I was out at the lake.

    "That's probably just THEIR opinion." she snorted, and again began to walk off towards the cafeteria.

    I stepped in to clear the air. "He meant that it was spoiled, Reika. As in, the food isn't safe to eat."

    "What?!" Reika stamped her foot in frustation. "But I'm hungry!" Her reaction didn't surprise me, given that we hardly were given time for breakfast. What I'm wondering though is how it even happened.

    "It's all right. I got it covered!" A beaming Thatcher reached into his black backpack, opening one of the larger compartments. He put both arms inside, feeling and reaching around for the contents within. When he found what he was searching for, he came up with three sub sandwiches in his hands. "Ta-da! Right from my father!"

    "A salami, ham, and cheese sandwich for you, Reika." he said, proudly presenting her with the meal stated. "Fritz, are you okay with a BLT?"

    I shrugged. "Sure."

    "And I'll take this tuna sandwich."

    We sat down, Reika joining Thatcher on a bench, and me choosing to sit on a curb across from them. My eyes widened as I took the first bite. The tomatoes had been dried, yet somehow retained all of their natural flavoring. Though it had been stored in a temperature-controled bag, the lettuce was as fresh as the day it was plucked from the Earth. The bacon was tender and crispy, with just the right amount of spice mixed in. The tangy mayonnaise, sweet butter, and semi-sour mustard blended perfectly, yet left just enough slack so that each condiment could be sensed individually. Most of all was the bread. It was tough and hard to get into on the outside, giving the sandwich a solid sturdy feel, making each piece feel like it meant something, yet soft and fluffy on the inside, with a rich texture that just didn't befit whole wheat bread. I just couldn't help myself, and began digging in as fast as I could, being careful not to miss a bit of the flavoring, drop too many crumbs, or choke.

    I guess I went a little too far, because Reika gave me a disgusted look. "Fritz, I know it's good. But you're eating like a pig who hasn't had food in a week."

    I got down the sizable bite I had taken, wiped my mouth, and humorously said, "I haven't."

    My response garnered a laugh out of my friends. Thatcher stopped his chuckle partway to inquire, "Wait, um, seriously?"

    I looked at him with a slight smile. "If you want to call what I had food." Which got them to laugh again.

    We continued to eat. I was too absorbed in the filling meal to talk further, and though I can't speak for my friends, their not talking may have indicated a similar standpoint. It was only as they finished that they began to speak.

    "I can't wait for the next class!" Thatcher said with ripe anticipation as he finished off his sandwich.

    "Why, what's so special about the next class?" I'd been done with mine for a few minutes, but Reika was still working on hers.

    Thatcher closed his eyes and smiled. "It's Art class. That's where I'll be able to do it." he began in a mumble, before breaking into a determined proclamation: "That's where I'll be able to start on the road to accomplishing my dream!"

    "You want to be an artist?" I have to wonder. How is art relevant at a Pokémon themed school? Do you like, use your Pokémon to make art? How can you even make art with a Pokémon?

    "Oh, no. That's not it." He quickly responded. "I mean, real art is part of it, but, that's not it. What I really want is to be a Pokémon Coordinator!"

    "Okay," I slowly said. Truth be told, I had no idea what that was. But it sounded quite normal, and so like I was about to admit that much. "I've heard of them before, but don't actually know what they do. Like, what are their goals, and stuff?"

    "The goals of a Pokémon Coordinator..." he confided, "is to make their Pokémon look beautiful. They get dressed up all cutely, then go up in front of crowds of people, trying to look cooler than anyone else! They have all sorts of fancy competitions in Contests. But they have to be tough, too! Since in most contests, you have to have special battles. Magnificient duels...showing off smart and elegant combinations of moves..." He was entirely bedazzled as he gave me the lowdown.

    That might explain his choice of wardrobe. I am wondering though: did he make it himself, have someone else do it for him, or is he just good at mixing and matching clothing?

    "Say, Fritz," Thatcher asked, "I was wondering something. How did you come to be here? And what's your dream?"

    "Huh? I'm...not...quite...sure...what...you...mean?"

    "What do you mean you're not-"

    "HEY!" Reika's words were interrupted by the screams of a frantic young man. "YOU GOTTA COME SEE THIS!"

    He ran off after saying this, his loose red shirt erratically wafting through his haste alone. The three of us looked to each other. I shrugged, stood up, and moved to follow. I glanced back at my friends after a few steps, who had decided to do the same. He led us around the construction site, between the main building and that smaller one, and then straight forward from there. It was around that time that it hit me where he was taking us.

    "Where...are...we...going?" gasped Thatcher.

    "I...don't...know..." Reika heaved. Even though a jog didn't drain her stamina earlier, a full-on sprint seemed to be wearing her down.

    "There's only one place we could be going." I said. It wasn't long before my suspicions were confirmed, but the reason as to why we were headed there was nothing like I had expected.


    In the middle of the lake was a massive serpent. Its body was armored by coarse, thick scales that appeared as though they would only yield to hard bludgeoning. The length of it was comprised of countless segments - tinted a desolate beige on its front, and a cold, dark blue on its back, lined with off-gray fins so sharp and rigid they might shred through metal. But what stood out most of all was the head of the matter. Though a creature of the deep, a fire resonated in its already-scarlet eyes. Its jaw - from which two white whiskers dangled - was wide enough to devour a man in one bite, and though only a few fangs sprouted from its gums, they alone seemed capable of the task of tearing food to pieces. And if their pointed form was not enough to placate the masochistic, several spines on the side of its face and a pointed dragon's crest above its eyes served as decor to the furious guise of the destroyer.

    "That-" Reika stuttered as she took a prelimary step back, "THAT'S A GYARADOS!!"

    Thatcher was equally intimidated, recoiling into his jacket. "There really is a Gyarados in the lake!"

    "But it's huge!" I said to him, somewhat more composed than my friends. "Something like that wouldn't be able to survive in there!" Not really denying it, just pointing that out. It's there though, so there has to be an explanation.

    Thatcher gave his take on that matter. "He...he must have really made a Magikarp mad, then!"

    Makes sense. Despite the demon of nature before him, Aporon didn't seem concerned. In fact, his cool appeared to be rubbing off on the rest of the student body, as they were watching in awe his Pokémon battle the behemoth. Its mug was no less ugly than its foe's, but it had earned that tag for an alternative reason. Almost in the shape of a shell, 7-8 pink tentacles flailed about behind its rugged emerald form like poisonous snakes. Two odd eyes - both merely a ring within a ring - never blinked once to any verbal or physical threat its opponent presented. From within its jaw shined an ethereal golden light. Besides all that, this oddball seemed very serpentine as well.

    "A Cradily?" Thatcher asked plainly. "How did Cronus get a Cradily?"

    "His family's friends with scientists from Cinnabar Island, remember?" Reika said. "He probably bought the fossil from someone and had them restore it!"

    Aporon's Cradily was swimming in a circular pattern around its target. Many torrents of water were being loosed from the lips of the massive dragon, but all of them were missing. Cradily was periodically responding with some blasts of its own - well, explosive blasts. They initially were glowing orbs or chestnuts that it spat from its jaw, but they burst upon contact. A classic Seed Bomb. Slowly but surely, the Cradily was getting near its foe. Aporon's gaze lowered, and he grinned wickedly. Relishing the moment when he got within close-range?

    Maybe. But then the Gyarados swung its entire body at his Pokémon, sending it clear across the water and to the shoreline near its trainer. Before Aporon could even get a word out, and before it could even get to its...foot? Feet? A blue flame had escaped the mouth of the dragon and enveloped the...umm...

    "What's Cradily supposed to be, anyway?"

    "I...think it's a barnacle?" Thatcher replied. "B-but what was THAT?" he yelped, referring to the move the Gyarados just used.

    "Dragon Rage. An attack that pierces the target's defenses."

    The inferno had kicked up a generous amount of dirt and smoke. It was making it impossible to see what had happened. Spectators were leaning forward tensely, expecting the worst...

    ...but when the dust settled, there was not an unconscious Pokémon lying there, but one who'd hobbled back upright and was...laughing!? The Gyarados let out a gasp, then a roar of frustration as many students cheered their hero on.

    "So that's how it is." Aporon dryly said to the dragon. "Cradily, Ancientpower!"

    The green sea creature began to glow with a mysterious white light. A number of rocks quietly materialized from nowhere, illuminated much the same way. Then, upon their wielder lashing forth like a general commanding his troops, the rocks shot out. The shattering impact of each caused its target to cringe in pain.

    The serpent clearly wasn't too happy with what just transpired, as a golden orb quickly formed in its mouth, and just as quickly came out in the form of a giant laser. Yet shock would come to it for the second time in a minute as Cradily's head fell flat onto the ground, the beam missing cleanly and hitting around twenty feet away from its intended target. And right after that, another Ancientpower was quickly readied and unleashed upon it. Seeing that a battle from fifty or sixty feet away was not one it was winning, the Gyarados raced to shore to face its foe head-on.

    "Watch out, Cronus!" shouted a male student. "It's coming right for Cradily!"

    Aporon just chuckled, a confident glint in his eye the only recognization of the statement. "Cradily, stand strong!"

    That got a reaction out of everyone. To say it was wholly positive wasn't exactly true. Despite the shock, they seemed to trust and believe in this guy's strategy - whatever it was. I wasn't so sure, though.

    "Bad move..." I whispered. I just had this feeling.

    "Huh? Why do you th-" Thatcher started to say, but before he could finish, it happened.

    When Gyarados reached the place where Cradily stood, it again swung its body across. But this time, the barnacle was ready for it, and stood firmly in place as contact was made with its upper body, whipping it into the ground. Cradily was immediately up despite impact and moved to launch a counterattack...at least, that's what I think what his plan was? What instead happened was Gyarados, upon realizing it didn't send its foe flying, had stopped, twisted around, and looked it dead in the eyes. Though gaze as still as ever, the body language of the Cradily showed terror. From this distance, the Gyarados' Hyper Beam simply couldn't miss its mark. The barnacle was consumed and slumped over unconscious within a small crater, multiple burns covering its body.

    But Aporon didn't seem worried at all as he recalled his Pokémon. The crown jewel addressed the dragon, "You're stronger and smarter than I thought. Good! Good." He retrieved another Poké Ball from his belt. "Now, prepare to face a Pokémon that is a true master of the water!"

    He never got a chance to throw send it out. Gyarados fired yet another Hyper Beam. Aporon saw it coming and ran to the right to evade it, but the force of the blast sent him flying backwards and into a tree. He didn't get up...

    The student body flew into spontaneous trepidation.

    "Cronus was beatened?!"

    "No! No! Nooo!"

    "What are we gonna do?!"

    "Ahhhhh!!!"

    "We have it to I mean we gotta get out of here!"

    The crowd agreed with the last of those, a supermajority scampering away in all directions - a few even summoning bird Pokémon and escaping into the skies. A few chose to rush to the aid of the fallen trainer. Reika and I took one look and commenced to run away ourselves. We stopped on the spot when we looked back and noticed what was missing.

    "Thatcher! You have to run!" Reika wailed.

    He was paralyzed in fear of the horror before him, which had begun to let out a primal roar. It was spewing its blazing breath into the air triumphantly. He didn't hear her.

    "Thatcher, please!" she begged.

    Again, no response. I knew what I had to be done...even given the dangers involved. I searched my pocket for a particular Pokémon. When I located it, I nodded to myself. Its container in hand, I turned around and stepped towards the lake.

    "Fritz!" screamed a hysterical Reika. "Are you retarded?! That's a GYARADOS!!! You just saw what it did to-"

    I ignored her words. This isn't a time to run away. This is a time for action! If I don't do something, Thatcher might be in serious trouble! I cast down the capsule before me, and from it materialized a walking mass of blue spaghetti. No, seriously. Its round "body" consisted of nothing more than vines of varying thickness. Two beady retinas peered out from within a dark hole in the middle. It had no legs - only two feet on which it wore red and white sneakers.

    "A Tangela?" Reika berated. "WHY WOULD YOU USE A TANGELA? Why not Mareep?!"

    ...

    It's not something I wanted to spring forward so soon...I was hoping I wouldn't have to at all...but right now, it looks like I have no other choice. It's what I brought it for, after all...just in case. Tangela turned to me expectantly. I shook my head and told it, "Get its attention first!"

    Tangela shook its body exuberantly. Per its demand, a vicious hurricane of leaves and twigs surrounded it. Tangela squealed as it sent the contents of the vortex flying towards the serpent. Though they merely glanced off its hide, it served its purpose. The Gyarados turned its attention away from what it had been on and towards that which dare attack it. It swam near and snapped forward, attempting to devour Tangela. But my Pokémon was much faster, and dodged on the left side effortlessly. I took a deep breath before I yelled my next word, right into my friend's ear.

    "THATCHER!!"

    He finally snapped out of his stupor, and began to back away. Then broke out into a full out run. I acknowledged him, then took another step forward, staring at the challenge in front of me. Reika didn't like that too much, either.

    "Wait, what the HELL?" She had a slight hint of thanks in her voice, but it played second fiddle to her confoundedness. "You're still going to-"

    "Reika!" I said, with more anger than I meant to, startling her slightly. I got some control back before I explained my choice of actions to her, "Think about it. What if we just leave this thing here? What do you think it's going to go after - if there's no one to take its anger out on?"

    Her face showed realization for a moment, but it quickly returned to its chastising nature. "Y-you SERIOUSLY aren't actually to try to-"

    "No." I interrupted. Try? There is no try. "I'm going to!"

    I tuned everything out as Tangela again looked back to me, still in a game of cat and mouse. This time, I gave the confirmation it seeked. With that, two particularly thick vines untwisted from its body to wrap themselves around the Gyarados! With a short run leading up, Tangela proceeded to reel itself in at an incredible speed, colliding feet first with the Gyarados, and actually sending it staggering back several meters. I heard many gasps around me. A second bout rang out when the Gyarados flailed a little in attempt throw Tangela off, only to get crashed into again when it whipped Tangela out sufficiently far enough for it to gain the needed momentum. The impact was top-first that time, but sent it reeling even further towards the center.

    The Gyarados was panicking now. It was Thrashing wildly about, spitting water and flame into the air at random. This tactic almost worked - one of Tangela's vines broke off in the struggle. That didn't seem to slow it down though, as it quickly brought out another, and when unable to wrap it around, used Power Whip instead. With each crack across its scaly spine, the Gyarados let out a wail of pain. Things were looking up.

    Then it dove underwater. Tangela was pulled down with it.

    And silence. It was a little disturbing. When all you've heard for 4-5 minutes has been the cries and sounds of vicious battle, it's kind of odd when it's just like, gone.

    Breaking the silence, Thatcher stammered, "Is...is it..."

    He didn't get to finish his question, as Gyarados - I guess when it saw how shallow the water was in comparison with its new size if Thatcher's theory is correct - soared high out of the lake. It landed on the asphalt with a thunderous crash that kicked up dust and rocks, and sent many remaining onlookers fleeing.

    Ugh. Damn it, and it looks like it's figured a way to get Tangela off - slamming its entire body into the ground, sandwiching Tangela between itself and pavement. Tangela kept its hold, but was stunned. Gyarados pulled itself upright, and once again flung itself down. My Pokémon wasn't crushed a second time, but was whipped into the ground particularly hard. Its grip is beginning to weaken...I need to get it out of there! Ideally, in an advantageous manner.

    Sensing my opportunity, I timely said, "Tangela, let go!"

    Hearing the command, Tangela dropped its vines as the Gyarados was winding up for a third slam. The momentum of the upswing sent it airborne. Perfect. The dragon crashed down without Tangela. It let out a roar of frustration as it attempted to figure out where it went, failing to notice its aloft foe shadowed against the sunlight. This was it!

    "Tangela, SOLAR BEAM!"

    Tiny particles of light flowed into my Pokémon's body, gradually tinting it a golden hue. Initially it was merely a translucent radiance, but it exponentially hastened to become more and more opaque. The Gyarados twisted around at the moment the charge reached its apex, just in time to see its fate. A column of energy, the size of Tangela itself, tore out of the mass of vines with such force that it bolstered itself a little further into the air. The sea serpent had no warning and no chance to respond. An ear-piercing howl of pain cut through the grounds as the beam enveloped its midsection. It defiantly tried to remain upright, despite its twitching body and eyes scrunched shut.

    Then it was enveloped in a red light? I looked and saw Cronus Aporon, head and body held high. He was slightly bruised, but that was by no means a mood dampener. He stared intently at the Poké Ball, letting out a silent cheer when it clicked shut.

    As he was approaching to retrieve his new Pokémon, I interposed myself between them. I was completely bewildered at what just happened. I threw up my arms, and was like "What was that all about?"

    Reika came to my support as well, giving him a similar look. "You just let Fritz defeat it, then caught it yourself?"

    "What was that for?" I demanded. I was taken slightly aback when Aporon was unmoved.

    "I thought it would be better for both of us." he said smoothly. Not even a self-superior laugh, it was as though he truly believed what he was saying. "And thanks for the help. I was planning on catching it anyway."

    "Better for both of us?" I raised an eyebrow as I recalled my Tangela. "What do you mean?"

    "You're a pretty good trainer, but I don't think you'd be able to control a Pokémon like this." He had a friendly expression on his face, which was further articulated by his helpful tone. But as he passed me by to collect his catch, he looked me dead in the eye and mumbled, "And I thought told you to stay out of my way."

    Aproron went to picked up the red and white sphere where the Gyarados once stood. With relaxed mannerisms, he strapped it to his belt, which with that had reached its maximum capacity of six. Just seeing this guy pissed me off. As he was about to walk away, I decided to address him further.

    "Okay, okay." I smugly began, "So if I see you being threatened by a giant water dragon again, I should just sit there and see how things play out?"

    "HA!" Aporon scoffed. "Don't be a jackass. Everyone here knows you only fought it to save your friend. Maybe impress the girl." He looked to Thatcher and Reika respectively.

    "Hey, now wait just a-"

    I shrugged. "Yeah, you're right. If my friend wasn't in trouble, I probably would've let you become fish food."

    "Mr. Westmyn!" I nearly jumped out of my skin upon seeing a very serious, very angry looking man who came storming out of nowhere. Upon further examination, it was the guy from the assembly earlier. Mr. Wippleman, I think his name was?

    "What?"

    "Go over to the principal's office!"

    "What for?"

    "IMMEDIATELY."

    I looked to my friends, who were equally as confused as I was at that moment. Aporon was smiling smugly, and the remaining stragglers were whispering amongst themselves. My eyes pleaded with Reika and Thatcher, hoping that one of them would say something in my defense. When neither spoke up, all I could do was obey as ordered, albeit with great reluctance.

    Not the way I wanted things to play out after making that impression...
    Don't know what to put here.

  5. #5
    Poet Laureate AiedailEclipsed's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Story of Fritz Westmyn: The Turning World

    Oooooh. I would have slapped that boy. And you know she would have had the kahones to do it too. And wtf is going on here now? This teacher would have gotten smacked too. Can't wait to read the next chapter :D
    "Be careful what you wish for, because you just might get it."
    -- Narrator, Pokemon: Jirachi Wish Maker
    "You can't change the world without getting your hands dirty."
    -- Lelouch Lamperouge, Code Geass: Lelouch of the Rebellion
    "Do I have a stamp on my forehead that says, 'The National Spokesperson for the Plight of Black People'? How the hell should I know the black perspective on The Color Purple? That's it, if I don't change classes, I'm gonna hurt this fool. Teachers treat me like I'm some kind of Rosetta stone for African-Americans. What? Black people learn how to read, and we all miraculously come to the same conclusion?"
    -- Victoria, Freedom Writers
    "N's heart is pure and innocent. But there is nothing more beautiful and terrifying than innocence."
    -- Concordia, Pokémon Black/White 2

  6. #6
    Let's get funky! Gama's Avatar Former Head Administrator
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    Default Re: The Story of Fritz Westmyn: The Turning World

    Nice story, really great description, which is excellent for setting the scene, but things got even more interesting when you get into the action.

    You do a good job of creating an atmosphere and a world, it's obvious you've put a lot of thought into the subtleties of this story.


    One problem that you persistently have though, throughout both chapters (or is it all three chapters?) is that you switch tenses a lot. I think you're mainly trying to tell the story in the past tense but now and again you switch to "is" instead of "was" and things like "need" instead of "needed". That's something that's easily fixable though.

    Also:

    I heard a beeping tone a moment after. I looked around in initial confusion, before coming to the conclusion that that was supposed to be a bell. "Is it time for class already?" I said to myself. I didn't spend that long out here, so they must have been REALLY late with the assembly. No time to look around at all, which disappointed me.
    At the beginning of this section he knew exactly how long it was until class began. A little inconsistency.

    So Aporon seems like a bit of a jerk, and is shaping up to be the rival character. I was at first a little intimidated by him on Fritz's behalf as he seems like quite an experienced battler, but Fritz seems reasonably experienced himself... Well, he at least knows how to handle himself in a battle and is quite good at battling even if his Pokemon aren't that up to scratch. Speaking of Fritz's Pokemon, I'm wondering what the pseudo-Gyarados that he caught at the end of the first Chapter as it seems to have not been a Gyarados after all?

    In fact, I'm not sure Aporon is really that much more of a jerk than Fritz himself. His description of the boy and girl who push Reika over as well as his attitude when he first meets Aporon make him seem like a bit of a mean guy. Still, he's an interesting character, and I'm looking forward to hearing more from him.


    Great job, keep up the good work, I look forward to reading more! If there's a tag list for this, could you add me to it please?

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    THE CULT OF PERSONALITY System Error's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Story of Fritz Westmyn: The Turning World

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    #########################

    Chapter 1-3: Fame and Infamy



    As I made the long, long walk to the principal's office, I felt as though every pair of eyes were on me - despite that not being the case and in some instances there being no eyes around at all. To be honest, I was a little perturbed by the situation. Having no idea what exactly I was in trouble for. Not helping the problem was the location of the office itself. Instead of being near the front entrance of the main building, the principal had chosen to tuck them away in a building in one of the corners of the school.

    Part of the trip there entailed crossing near the outdoor battlegrounds again. I slowed my pace to examine them better. It was actually fairly intuitively designed. While large enough to host a singular large battlefield and lines even suggesting doing so is a possibility, the sheared grass was divided into six partitions - each blocked from its neighbors by mobile chain-link fences. They didn't seem to be in-use at the moment, no doubt due to the spotlight being on the incident that just occurred. Or no one else making an enemy at the school on day one. This isn't to say they were abandoned; a few students here and there had taken up the bleachers on either of the long sides.

    The place I was headed to looked nothing like anything else on-campus. Only about a third as wide as the main one, it's easier to up and call it a three-story plain grey building than try to dick around with any elegance, because it wasn't elegant at all. Even the windowed double doors were entirely ordinary.

    As I stepped inside, I immediately located the offices straight ahead. I walked up, and before I could even open my mouth, the dowdy woman at the counter said "two doors down on your right" and opened the door for me. The sense of dread continued to increase as I stepped into the carpeted halls, reaching the point of where the gold plaque on the brown door before me - aptly labeled Dean H. Finkerton's Office - seemed to be staring back.

    I gathered my bearings. May as well go in and get this over with. Taking a deep breath, I turned the handle and opened the door...

    Upon hearing voices from within, I very discreetly shuffled inside. The room was very well furnished, with a luxurious blue carpet, dignified looking walls, shiny wooden bookshelves, and so on. Two men were standing near the desk fit for a king at the back of the room. One, a narrow-eyed man, a rather husky and hairy one dressed in clothes too small for him. In spite of, that's understandable given his height and weight. The other, and apparent Dean, was a stalwart-looking man in business casual. On his box-shaped head were coarse blue retinas, a chunky nose, bushy mustache, and a full head of short and gray hair.

    "Howard, the University had no choice back then." said the first man. "Those were difficult times. But now, we're in a much better state. All the other academies of the region require students to wear uniforms. I don't see why we should be any different. Why don't you reintroduce the program?"

    While his subordinate's eyes were sharp, the gaze of the Dean were like daggers thrusting into the soul. "Because, it's a waste of money. Don't make me repeat myself a third time." He spoke loudly, emphatically, firmly. It was intimidating, and I wasn't even the guy being yelled at. Yet...

    "Sir, what about the Annual National Converge of Education Centers?" The first man maintained his civility. "They won't be happy at our continued non-conformance."

    "Frankly, Miedere, I don't give a damn."

    "So you would throw away values just to save a few bucks?" Mr. Miedere said, a little more frustratedly. His arms twitched. He probably wanted to cross them, but was resisting making the gesture.

    "Money talks. And all right. You want a good reason?" The Dean got out of his chair, and stared outside the window that gave a view of the main building. He turned around, and I didn't think his stare able to get any more intense, but it just did. "Contest class. Without freedom to express themselves, how will the coordinators of tomorrow effectively develop themselves?" They were quiet after this, the reasoning sinking in until the Dean proclaimed, "There you go."

    "But sir-" protested the burly man, but his boss cut him off.

    "Now get the hell out of my office."

    Mr. Miedere just stood there, flabbergasted at what happened. He was physically larger than the principal, yet he'd just been taken down to size. He appeared as though he was going to raise his thick arms in protest for a moment, but instead simply shook his head. As he turned and left, he fired me a harsh look as he passed by. That's about when the Dean sighted me.

    "Ahh! And who do we have here? If it isn't the great Fritz Westmyn! Come in, come in!" His attitude had changed, he was now wholely inviting. I cautiously advanced towards the desk, just in case. It was unfounded, as the principal kept a hearty demeanor. "Have a seat. Sit down!"

    Feeling compelled to obey without question, I sat in the large chair before me. It was nearly as comfortable as his huge black office chair looked, but it did little to ease my tension. I knew I had to think fast to get out of this one. So I just started talking, "Look, about what I did. See, the bathrooms were full, because-"

    "Oh, be quiet. I had you called in here for a reason. Something you might not want to hear." He was now talking seriously again. I figured his wrath couldn't be far behind, and mentally prepared for the worst. "Let's just get right to the point. You see, there is growing concern amongst the staff about your being here, Westmyn. A fair number of them don't like you. They would rather you not be at this school."

    "Wait! You don't actually mean that, do you?! I mean-"

    "But you are not getting kicked out."

    "How could you people-wait, what?"

    "I am not going to kick you out, Westmyn." said the Dean. I think he was smiling...slightly. It was hard to tell given my mental state. He could've very well been expressionless.

    I blinked. I took this in. When proceeding here, I swore I was headed to the gallows. I didn't expect this at all. Part of me just wanted to take what I'd been given and run, not push my luck at all. But curiosity got the better of me, and I asked "Why?"

    He forcefully slammed a palm down on his desk, startling me a little. "Because. It is MY University now. And what I say, goes."

    Again, I blinked and took in what was dictated. The Dean stood to his feet and went over to one of the small bookshelves on the left side of the room to retrieve a green binder. He was checking over its contents casually, paying me no further heed. "Okay." Again, a thirst for information overrode my common sense. "You're going to have to explain this one to me. Why won't you kick me out?"

    Not looking up from the binder, he plainly stated, "To put it bluntly, it is because you're paying me."

    "Um, well...you do know how it actually technically is with me, right?" I said, rubbing my scalp and tucking my long curly hair behind my ears.

    The Dean nodded and serenely sat back down, placing the binder on the desk. "Of course. But any student is a source of income to me, no matter the means. You have your ways, but others, heh, well. Do you know how much money the wealthy are willing to pay to send their spoiled little brats to school? Quite a lot, let me tell you." He was gradually speaking with greater unscrupulous contempt. "Academies such as this one? They're breeding grounds for the pretentious. The entitled. The vain. The wasteful. Those who were too good to go on a journey like much of the youth of the country. And they're all loaded. Are you getting this?"

    "...yeah?" I wasn't sure what to make of this all.

    "Good. This place used to be one of the most expensive Universities to get into. And do you know what I did?"

    "You...made it the most expensive?" I unconfidently guessed.

    He laughed. Geniune laughter. "No. I lowered the tuition fees." From his subsequent expression, I'd say I involuntarily gave him a confused look. But can you really blame me? The Dean continued, "Think about it. Hundreds upon hundreds of new students, tripping over themselves to get into that which was once beyond their reach. All paying to join the elite. The cash of the upper middle class, flowing into my pocket. All so they can stand with the richest. Bringing in more money than a system of high fees and lower volume could ever hope to provide. And do you want to know the funny part?" He was grinning from ear to ear with smug, shameless, self-superior immorality. "The funny part is, despite the exorbitant prices, they were no better than other places. It was genius in theory. Crafting an image to rip off the fools who think high cost means superior product." Any respect he might have been granting waned with his next statement. "But then there was their budget, or lack thereof. Do you know how much revenue they wasted?"

    Put on the spot again. This time, I was more intrepid with my reply. "I'd say around ten million a year?"

    "A good guess. Ten million each year was being spent frivolously." He opened the binder to reveal a spreadsheet of fiscal numbers. He started to go over them, counting each which was listed on his stubby fingers. "Inessentials. Superfluous features. Inefficiency. Repairwork. Cleaning. Improper distribution of dividend. Improper use of space. The list goes on and on. By taking care of all of that, I was able to use the extra revenue to expand the school. Furthermore, I brought in some associates as well as out of work instructors. I could get away with paying them a lower salary. Of course, I slashed salaries of existing employees anyway." He smirked pridelessly at his accomplishments.

    "So you're spending money to make money?" I was beginning to get it, and it makes sense. I suppose.

    He showed delight. "Ah, I see you know what it means to be an entrepreneur. Very good. You should enroll in the new Economics class on your second year. You're correct. This University is just an investment to me. I could care less about their wanton luxuries and proper principles."

    Now I didn't know what to think. Here was an intelligent businessman whose practices were reprehensible. Yet I felt like I could trust him more than anyone else on campus. That was a fact. But what to make of it is what confounded me. "So...we're good?"

    "Better than good, Mr. Westmyn. It pleases me that you understand the way things are. Just watch what you do out there, you hear? Now get the hell out of my office."

    Despite being granted my pass, I still didn't feel an urge to hang around here longer than I had to. Not because of his last statement either - he said it in a jovial manner. So I shook his hand, stood up, and practically bolted out the door. I similarly wasted no time in leaving the building, lest any staff attempt to heckle me. I can say with confidence though that he is right about at least one thing: I need to be more careful from now on.

    ----------

    In the wake of incident at the lake, it looked as though student activity around campus had begun to spread out. There was a peculiar consistency about it. First, everyone seemed a little more tense than should be ordinary for the first day of school. And second, many of my peers were whispering amongst themselves. Once more, I felt as though eyes were upon me. Only difference now was, there actually were people around to be doing so.

    So many of the staff of this school dislike me. It's not that I didn't expect it...it's just that I was hoping it wouldn't be the case. And I have no clue as to the stance of my fellow students, other than how I had garnered their interest. Precisely what type of interest was the question. Would it be positive? Would it be negative? Or a mixture of both? And what would my friends have to say? I guess I should find them and ask them about it.

    I passed by the battlegrounds again, which had a few students sparring amongst themselves. It then occurred to me that I had no idea where to find my friends. An examination of the bleachers at least narrowed the possibilities...but like that's any help.

    Thankfully, it looked like I wouldn't have to bother, as the 'bell' began to hum. Since it was just on my left, I entered the door nearby and made my way to the next class.

    ----------

    The Art Class was located on the third floor of the school. It was a much more open floor than the ones below it, home to only three classes. I thought the Sciences classroom to be large, but Art was nearly double the area! Large glass windows on one side of the room gave a fantastic view of the grounds. It had a wide open mini-stage up front, next to the teacher's desk. Coming off the Dean's, this one, although fanciful, looked akin to resale. Supply cabinets were labeled and lined up in an orderly fashion, in contrast to the floor which was slightly chaotic. The messy wooden tables - scattered about - were even larger than those in Socials, able to give each student all the workspace they could ever need. Naturally, there were still the buffoons who choose to crowd together.

    I spotted my friends quickly enough. Again sitting alone, and somewhat annoyingly, despite how they'd gotten here early and could've procured a table by a window, they were as far from them as possible. They were sitting across from one another and talking. When they saw me, they stopped and looked. It was a slightly awkward moment, but I took a seat on Thatcher's right regardless.

    "Fritz." Reika said disappointedly, before I could even fully sit down. "What did you do?"

    "Apparently nothing." I tried to be casual about it, but wasn't doing a very good job.

    "Then why were you called to the principal's office?" she pressed, leaning in further and narrowing her eyes.

    "I don't know. It was for something administrative, I guess." I was trying to play it off as best as I could. "Mr. Finkerton talked to me for a bit about a few things, said some stuff about the school, and then he let me go. That's it."

    "That's it?" She fell back against her chair, but wasn't accepting my answer. As if she expected there was something else.

    "Why would I lie to you?" I said, firmer. "You already know I went out to capture that Pokémon. If I was in trouble for that, what would be the point of saying it wasn't to someone who already knows?"

    "Because, you-" she paused, unable to think of anything in response. After six seconds, she just grumbled and turned away.

    I felt a prodding at my shoulders, the source being Thatcher, who leaned over and began speaking to me in a hushed voice, so that our friend could not hear. "Is that really what happened?" he asked, in a kinder tone that convinced me to explain in greater detail.

    "Yeah. He did say to watch what I do out there, too. I guess Aporon or one of his friends must've gone crying or something." I whispered back. That last part was only speculation, but it's all that came to mind at this point in time. "About the school, he talked about how he expanded it, and stuff like that."

    "Oh, okay."

    We were quiet for a few moments as our peers continued to pile in. Bothering me a little further was how by the time most were present, there were still window seats and tables remaining. The teacher still had yet to arrive, and it was slightly passed the time that he was slated to do so. I thought to bring the window thing up to them, but Thatcher spoke up about the latter issue.

    "So, I wonder what kind of teacher we're going to have here." he pondered.

    "Yeah." That's an interesting question. "Biology had a crazy German scientist, Socials had that, well, really disgusting old man to put it one way...wonder what kind of guy we'll get here?"

    "Hi, class!" It was a woman. A really ditzy-sounding woman. "I'm Ms. Odell, and I'll be your Art Teacher!"

    She...what? What the hell? "Wow. And you thought that woman at the assembly was a skank, Reika."

    "I know, but I..." she was speechless. "I can't believe this! What the f...why? What kind of teacher wears a snug, bright pink tank top and jean shorts that barely cover her ass?!" She was grasping her hair in deranged shock.

    Thatcher cut in. "Maybe...she's hot?"

    Reika and I gave him similar glares, maybe for different reasons. "You don't know what hot is, Thatcher." I said, deadpan.

    "This is kind of embarrassing, I don't know who any of you are!" Ms. Odell giggled. "And I had to teach the same stuff twice already today, I'm exhausted. So, why don't we instead go around the class and introduce ourselves? How about we start with you three in the back there?!" She was pointing to our table, skipping over to the left of it to confirm it was us she was referring to, "Come on! Up to the front!"

    "A-are you sure that's all right?" Thatcher queried.

    "Of course it is." the teacher said with a bounce that made Reika and I turn to each other unnervingly. "The first day is all about introductions, anyway! Now come on! Don't be shy, now!"

    She was technically right, but I think few teachers choose to take it this literally. Regardless, I stood up and began to stretch my arms and back out in preparation. My friends showed a bit of reluctance, but eventually stood up as well. The three of us made our way onto the stage at the front of the class. It was a neat sensation to stand there, though explaining it is difficult. This platform was elevated only half a foot over the rest of the room, but what a difference that half a foot made.

    Our female friend decided to take the initiative and approached the cedar podium at front and center. The silence was deafening as she took up her position. A staredown between a wordless girl and a mute audience.

    "I'm Reika." she said, miserable to be put on the spot like this. She looked like she was about to say more, her mouth opening halfway. Instead, she sighed exasperatedly and stood to the opposite side.

    "You can go next." I offered, gazing over my right shoulder as I leaned against the whiteboard with my left arm and back. My friend nodded.

    Set to a few polite claps, Thatcher stepped into the middle without incident, but as soon as he turned to face the class, he froze in place. Like, at that moment, all visible motion ceased. "Um...uhh...I'm...uh...hahahaha...err..." he stammered. "My name...is...umm...Scratcher Pee. AHHHH!!! I-I-I mean, it's Th-Thatcher Li!" Even from ten feet away, I could see the beads of sweat drizzling down his forehead. He was holding both sides of his jacket, the tempo of his jittering rising steadily for each second that passed. "I um, I want to...I...I want...want to..." Spontaneously, he yelped out and buried his arms into his face, running back to the desk as quickly as possible in tears. Reika called his name and ran to console him, leaving me on my own.

    "Um, well..." Ms. Odell said, rubbing her forehead, "...let's hear from this lovely young man next."

    Before I even moved, the class began clapping and cheering. It started slow, but by the time I reached center stage, a quarter of the class was doing the former, a quarter the latter, and another quarter was doing both. There was even liveliness among the remainder of my peers. It was almost surreal.

    I really couldn't do anything but take it all in with a smile. When it died down after 15-20 seconds, I began to weigh in on the situation. "Well, I'm guessing many of you saw or heard about what happened at the lake." I briskly said, to which I received more cheers. I held out my palms. "All right, all right, quiet down so I can speak. My name is Fritz Westmyn. So you probably guessed it from how I battled over there, but I already had some experience with Pokémon before I came here. I've been practicing with them on and off since I was like...five?" I shrugged, "It's nothing really, just been a little bit at a time, you know? Here and there. Nothing too big."

    I held the entire crowd captive as I paused. "I never got a chance to travel a lot. I was around the same group of people for like, the longest time. So it's nice to finally get out and meet new faces." Ah, wow. What am I doing? I should wrap this up pretty quick. "But look at me here, making a big-ass speech out of all this. Sooo, thanks for the welcome, and, I look forward to four years of classes with you guys."

    With a shining look of contentedness on my face and another ovation to send me off, I went back to the desk and sat down. It was only then that I noticed my friends' awestruck faces. Thatcher was displaying a mixture of shock and amazement. Reika was just dumbfounded.

    "Fritz...how did you..." Thatcher tried to say, but couldn't find the words to finish. I understood what he was trying to ask me, but I wasn't quite sure what I could say that could help him. If there was anything at all.

    My other friend was wordless on the issue. Even in the few hours I'd known her so far, this change in demeanor was baffling. Even concerning.

    "Reika, what's the matter?" I inquired, placing my worry out in the open.

    "Nothing." she said plainly, poorly attempting to conceal a peculiar concern. I decided not to press the issue further, uncertain of what could be hanging over her head.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~

    Table by table, each student in the class went up to the front. One by one, they introduced themselves. The responses and reactions given varied between each individual. A few nearly went into a speech as I did. A few kept it short and simple, like Reika. No one reacted the same was Thatcher did though, a fact I could tell bothered him from his frustrated look and reddened cheeks.

    By the way, I guess mathematics isn't Ms. Odell's strong suit. With around 50 minutes to work with, 200+ students, and a mode time taken of half a minute, there was not enough time to get through everyone. She said that we'd finish up the rest and begin class proper in two days.

    Compared to the rush that was the first few hours of the day, the remainder simply rushed by.

    The Battling class I was expecting to be most exciting of all, but...it wasn't. There weren't even chairs, a fact that really annoyed Thatcher. This was the only class we had on the first floor. If one was to go in from the back entrance (near the outdoor battlegrounds), it'd be on your left as you enter. Area efficiency seemed to be the idea they had here. It would explain the lack of chairs, since they had to squeeze in a battlefield, a scoreboard (manual one), a few negligible workstations, a projector and screen for it, and more into this space about half the length of the Art room. Come to think of it, the rooms were polar opposites of one another in that sense.

    Wisely, I sat with Reika and Thatcher on either side of me. It was also a good thing that the teacher, Mr. Wu, was good at taking control and regaining attention. There just wasn't much to the class besides which. It was just a basic intro to the course.

    I didn't have to put up with too many enthusiasts after class. Which was pleasant. My friends and I just relaxed afterwards for the most part. The worst that happened was showing off Tangela and Mareep a bit to a group of 4-5 people. I forgot how it happened, but at one point, we all had out our Eevees, and were letting them get some fresh air and interaction.

    Reika's Eevee had an expression of confusion as my own playfully ran around it. It was cool to contrast our three Pokémon with one another. Her Eevee had a shorter, more slender tail and pinned-back ears around half the size of my Eevee's. Its coat wasn't as vibrant a brown, but was a little shinier. Thatcher's stood on the side watching the other two with silent bemusement. Despite a smaller frame, raggedy fur, and bunchy/segmented mane, it was closer in appearance to my own that Reika's was. Its ears and tail matched, and it had a similar innocence in its eyes.

    Reika's Eevee eventually got tired of the game, and lashed its tail. This startled my Eevee so much, it ran back towards me with an incredible speed, positioning itself as far away from Reika and her Eevee as it could get itself.

    "Quick Attack." I noted. "Nice."

    "Wow." Reika snorted in laughter. "That Eevee has issues."

    "I'd say it's okay." Thatcher said soothingly. He was thinking. "I think it could be great in a Contest."

    "It is pretty cute, isn't it?" I received confirmation from him. It's too bad about its timid personality, because if it weren't for the battles, that might be something to consider for it.

    "Fritz," Thatcher addressed, his voice trembling a bit, "C-can you...can I ask you something?"

    "Sure." I said with a nod of my head and cheerful tone. "Is there something on your mind?"

    "No, um...remember what they said...that how we raise Eevee. Did they..." His voice trailed off, but I still understood what he was trying to convey.

    "Doesn't Eevee have like eight or nine different ways to evolve?" I asked. Something close to that. If I remember it correctly, Eevees are renowned as alternative starter Pokémon - particularly among non-League sanctioned organizations - due to their unstable genetic makeup granting them the capacity for varied evolution. This allows their owners to pick and choose what type of Pokémon they want it to become. "If I had to guess, I'd say it has to do with that. When, and where, and how, and why someone chooses to evolve it. Something like that."

    He nodded periodically, eyes glowing in extreme interest as I put my two cents in. With satisfaction and curiousity, he then asked, "So what are you planning to do? W-with your Eevee, I mean"

    Um. "I don't know yet. Maybe I'll just let the cards fall where they will." I adjusted my bangs as I talked. I was certain there was something I could do, but I didn't know what it was just yet.

    My answer disappointed him. He said, "I don't know either. What could be good for a contest?" The second sentence was spoken more quietly and ponderously than the first.

    '"Reika?" I fished for her own decision. She had walked over to her Eevee, and seemed to be trying to figure out its moves. From her expression, I don't think it was going well.

    "Not Vaporeon or Leafeon." she replied. "That's it. That's all I can say."

    That was about all that stood out about our free time. I think Reika and Thatcher were just too mentally drained to suggest anything else.


    ~~~~~~~~~~


    The first year dormatory of the school is a structure with as many stories as the school's main building, but only about 3/5ths of the height. With the smaller ceiling, I'd imagine it's a tight fit for very, very tall people, but not so much for most (including me).

    It surprises me, though. Well, two things, actually. First of all, despite the disposition my peers had towards me, they weren't falling over each other in attempt to be my roommate. It may be in part to the second. The uppermost floor actually has the least number of students residing on it. I'm guessing people don't want to walk too much to get to their room. Three attributes of this secluded spot make it worth living in, though. One, this room was well-looked after by previous owners. Second, it's nice and quiet. Third would be the view.

    I'd have thought more people would flock here for that last aspect. Being situated on a corner room, I had the luxury of windows on each outer wall. One of these overlooked the building where the offices were, and the vast forests beyond. A bluff within was silhouetted against the starry skies. Which, I might add, is pretty beautiful too. Where I used to live, you were lucky to see a hundred twinkling stars. Yet this near-pristine state of the land exposed thousands, and even a few faint nebulae. By peering out and to the left, one could get a good look of the entire rest of the grounds. Rukh's University feels like a whole different place at night, the dim illumination of the few lamps presenting a quaint atmosphere. From the other window is more forest, but the remainder of the grounds within and some city beyond differentiated it from the former. Speaking of city, one is able to see most of it by looking out and to the right.

    It's a very energy efficient township. The reason why the night sky was as visible as it was could certainly be tied to this municipality's planning department. Actually, most of the country has adapted these standards in one way or another, though these folks must have been especially dedicated. The rest of the credit could be given to the moon, which was only a sliver at present. As a result of these two factors, the town wasn't that radiant a sight at this hour. Unlike the rocky hillsides opposite, the finer details were still surveyable. I could make out a park, a Pokémon Center, and what I think is the mayor's office.

    It was soothing to have some time to myself. After all that happened today, it was nice to be able to bask in the cool nocturnal air, lie on my bed, and think.

    Cronus Aporon...dubbed the crown jewel of Rukh's University. I wasn't expecting him to have quite the level of talent he demonstrated. And the last thing I expected was for a school-raised battler to have access to a rare, fossilized Pokémon. Being honest with myself, I was a little concerned with what I was warned of. Becoming an outcast should I make an enemy of him. It was interesting to be greeted with applause by my classmates after I did just that. But was that a universal stance, or just the opinions of one group?

    Howard Finkerton, Dean of the University. There's no denying that the man is driven by money. But at the same time, he seems like a nice guy. Funny how there's only one thing he judges a person by, and given that, he's strangely trustworthy. The teachers don't seem to like him too much, but I think he knows what he's doing with the place.

    Thatcher. His goal is the be a Pokémon Coordinator...someone who shows off their Pokémon in elegant fashion. But I'm a little worried. That may be his goal and his dream, but can he adapt to the pressure? When he went up in front of the Art class today, he had a total meltdown. I have to wonder what he thought of me, when I went up there as if it were nothing. He's a good person, and I think he has a strong resolve, so I'm not too concerned. Just a little concerned, and a little curious. And on that note, there's Reika. What's the history between Thatcher and Reika? I guess I could just ask them. When and where, though?

    I sat up and looked at the clock. It was just after midnight, but I wasn't tired yet. The only problem was, there was little to do at this hour. Not even any assignments. The fact that there was a greater risk of collapsing from boredom than from sleepiness was an irritating one.

    Just to say it again, I still don't know why I decided to come to Rukh's University. It just sort of came to me. I mean, I'm certain a trainer with experience in Pokémon attending a school geared towards newcomers was not unprecedented. There's probably a couple others even here. And there's always more to learn, after all. Still, it bugs me a little to be here. Only a little.


    I was able to stay up for about half an hour longer. Ultimately, with nothing to do, and nothing more to think about, the only thing I could do in the end was lie back down, close my eyes, and wonder what tomorrow would bring me.
    Don't know what to put here.

  8. #8
    Poet Laureate AiedailEclipsed's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Story of Fritz Westmyn: The Turning World

    As usual, awesome. I'm really curious as to Reika's background. She seems so... odd. And I'm ever more curious as to how this story will proceed. At the moment, its more of a journey fic that doesn't really have a driving force (evil character, etc). Also, put me on that tag list!
    "Be careful what you wish for, because you just might get it."
    -- Narrator, Pokemon: Jirachi Wish Maker
    "You can't change the world without getting your hands dirty."
    -- Lelouch Lamperouge, Code Geass: Lelouch of the Rebellion
    "Do I have a stamp on my forehead that says, 'The National Spokesperson for the Plight of Black People'? How the hell should I know the black perspective on The Color Purple? That's it, if I don't change classes, I'm gonna hurt this fool. Teachers treat me like I'm some kind of Rosetta stone for African-Americans. What? Black people learn how to read, and we all miraculously come to the same conclusion?"
    -- Victoria, Freedom Writers
    "N's heart is pure and innocent. But there is nothing more beautiful and terrifying than innocence."
    -- Concordia, Pokémon Black/White 2

  9. #9
    THE CULT OF PERSONALITY System Error's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Story of Fritz Westmyn: The Turning World

    Chapter 1-4: The Challenge of Cronus Aporon



    The first full day of school was upon Reika, Thatcher, and myself.

    I found my friends in conversation right outside the dorms. Thatcher had on another stylish getup. Besides his light jacket, he had on a sky-blue t-shirt with a design to match. It was very hard to notice the Swablu in it - its bright aquamarine body and the puffy mists surrounding it camouflaged it against the sky and clouds. He also wore hastily thrown-on blue jeans. Reika had on a camp shirt and shorts like yesterday, but the former was a plain off-gray, instead of having orange partitions.

    We held light conversation as we made our way into the main building, and straight ahead after entry. "Our first real day here. Battling in the morning, and Sciences in the afternoon." noted Thatcher as we stepped into the former classroom. Already, students had sat down on the asphalt floor and were prattling away excitedly. Thatcher was staring up at the ceiling, maybe beyond it. He chuckled, "You nervous too?" He was forcing a bright face, his body language giving the facade away.

    "A little." Reika admitted, shuffling her feet slightly.

    "It's not that daunting to me." I said. It really didn't bother me too much. "Been anticipating it all night, in fact. Not nervous at all." When there's nothing but the next day to think about in the middle of the night, that's kind of what happens.

    "I'm glad at least one of us isn't." Thatcher was visibly more confident now. The bright face was still a little forced, but it looked more natural. He nodded. "Come on, let's sit over there."

    Thatcher was leading us to the far left corner of the "battlefield" on the floor. Yet before we got halfway, we found three faculty standing before the three of us. One of them was the teacher, Mr. Wu. He was clad in what I think is a brown ceremonial robe from centuries past (but I'm not sure what century it was from). I didn't recognize the other two, but both looked to be in their 30s or 40s. One was of tall stature, was dressed in casual, and had already begun to feel the effects of aging. His hairline was receding, but what he had was so tightly wrapped into a ponytail, it hung slightly over the nape of his neck like a noodle. Eyes were blue, with round-framed spectacles in front.

    The other wore a semi-formal striped polo shirt bearing the University's insignia and coloration (red and silver) and jodhpurs. His face bordered on caricature, with narrow cheeks and chin shaping it very roughly like an inverted pyramid. Its features weren't much better: crescent-shaped deep brown eyes (nearly a black), a curved nose, and almost-absent lips. The ironic thing about it is he might be considered an adonis otherwise, given his sinewy frame and Caesar cut.

    That man was the one who began talking to me. "Mr. Westmyn, come with us. You're not in this class anymore." He had a minor case of laryngitis, which made his baritone yet flamboyant voice truly distinctive. Wait...

    "What." I said blankly. I'm not in this class anymore? Why?

    With a sigh, a solemn Mr. Wu put it to me straight: "You already demonstrated a high level of prowess in battling. Therefore, you have been transferred to the Tactics class by Mr. Kripps."

    Okay. Now I'm nervous. Reika and Thatcher were both stunned, but not as much as me. I didn't know what to say or do. I was hoping to have all my classes this year with them...and now, that's not going to happen. I wanted to protest, do something that might allow me to remain there, but I couldn't think of anything to say that would help. All I could do was follow instructions.

    Out of the Battling room and into the hallway we stepped. Natural light from the nearby door filtered in. Into the first floor of the school. The most open of them all, particularly on the left wing. A lounge for guests and teachers is the main feature of the right wing, along with the Battling and Medical classes. Whereas the left is consumed by an interior Student Square featuring a stage, a trophy case, and a HUGE classroom for something.

    Up the nearby stairs we went to the second floor. The one with the most classrooms on it. The blandest looking floor of the bunch, with plain white walls without decoration, and patchy brown flooring. The florescent lighting occasionally flickered, the only special part of this floor of halls and rooms - the purpose of over half of them escaped me. Besides Socials and Sciences, all I know is there's also a History class and a library.

    Up and up I was led. The Arts floor. I'd never really been into it, but the bright pieces of work displayed around this floor seemed highly appealing right now. I could barely make out the door to my Art class on one end of the hall, and the display case on the opposite end showcasing some of the finest pieces of work students had produced, and awards in crafting, entertainment, and Pokémon Coordination. While many of the former were on display in the right wing of the first floor and the latter among the first floor's trophy case, this floor dedicated to it felt as its own entity. It actually had the same style of tile and wall as the second, but what a difference the paint(ings) made.

    I made one last, desperate attempt to get out of this. "But I don't want to transfer to Tactics. I won't get to be with my friends."

    The well-dressed one spoke uncaringly, not even attempting to make eye contact. "You'll have plenty of time to spend together AFTER class."

    The stairs wound on, wholly merciless to the weak or physically disabled. Despite being neither, they still felt grueling to me. It was all in my mind. The anticipation...or dread...of what lie ahead.

    The final climb into the darkness above.


    This was...different, to say the least. These corridors are far more narrow than anything on the lower levels. The walls are sort of a beige, and the floor a dark, textured brown. It's not wood, but it looks like it. By contrast, the mood set here felt serious and formal. But once we rounded the halls and stepped out into the room itself, everything changed. Well, except the serious and formal part.

    Emerging into the class proper revealed a far keener setup than Battling Class. There's actually chairs here! The whole place is like a gymnasium overall, complete with similar flooring, walling, and bleachers.

    What a time to show up, too. Two students were right in the middle of a battle! Everyone else was watching from the sidelines as their classmates squared off. On the left (from my perspective) was a tall girl dressed as something between a punk and a goth. Among her apparel included tanker boots, leather jacket, and jeans (all black), the latter held up by a shiny metal belt. Her left hand was on her hip whilst her right lay slack, the brass bracelet on it was tight enough so it didn't fall to her wrist. With a cold verdant sneer she stood motionless, the white streaks of her ebon-hued bobcut inanimate.

    The other trainer stood with agitation, almost desperation. His slate blue eyes were stretched wide, and short, bristled blonde hair stood rigidly on end. The guy was only around 5'5'', but either worked out a lot or has been abusing steroids - a tanned figure the guy must enjoy showing off given his skin-tight crimson shirt and short jean shorts. The palpable terror in his face was also being exhibited by his Pokémon. And considering it was this huge-ass brown bear with needle-like claws, that was saying something.

    It wasn't so much physical appearance of its foe. In fact, it was a flabby yellowish piece of work with a unibrow that wrapped the length of its head and merged into the black hair on its back. It had on a segmented green skirt and what looked like dark indigo parachute pants. With each minute twitch, a part of its body shook. Hell, it could shake the floor. But considering the deathgrip it had on the ursid with hands big enough to pitch a volleyball, you wouldn't dare make fun of it to its face.

    I took an empty seat a little to my left to watch the fight unfold.

    "Give up." ordered the female. Well, it'd be slightly inaccurate to call it an order. It was more of a stern, ominous warning.

    "No way!" fired back her opponent. His words were defiant, but his voice was cracking. "Ursaring, use Thrash to escape!"

    Hearing the command, the massive bear Pokémon wildly jerked from side to side to gain freedom from the grasp of its foe. Or tried to, anyway. The hold on its torso was locked in way too tight. The female moved her eyes to her Pokémon and mumbled something. With this, it spun around the Ursaring, and ironically pulled it into a savage bearhug. Again, the Ursaring tried to use Thrash to escape. This was even more futile. Its trainer's body language was becoming further neurotic, as was his voice. "Ursaring, dig your claws into that Hariyama!" Its arms were pinned, and it was naturally difficult to see between their two massive bodies. But by how the Hariyama cringed - if only slightly - I assume it managed to do something.

    "Toss it. You know what to do after." was all that the woman said in response. Her Hariyama somersaulted backwards and released its grip, sending the bear into a roll that ended ten feet away on its gut. The sumo wrestler Pokémon was in no rush for its follow-up, strolling up to its downed adversary at a brisk pace. Ursaring was straining to push itself up and get back its feet. Hariyama loomed over this sight for a few moments, before forcefully bringing a foot down. The bear let out a roar of intense pain as its foe, after five seconds of pressing down hard, casually used it as a stepping stone.

    "Okay, okay! I give!" the guy frantically relented when his Pokémon's arms were grabbed from behind, not wanting to find out what would happen next. He buried his face into his arms in shame, dropping to his knees. He kept one wrapped over his head, even as he used the other to recall his gasping Pokémon.

    His opponent mouthed "good call," gave her Pokémon an acknowledgement, retrieved its Poke Ball from her pocket, and brought it back inside. She wordlessly returned to her seat. The guy remained where he was for about half a minute, before shamefully shuffling to his own.

    "That spoke for itself. Another submission victory by our most callous student." plainly said the teacher, adjusting his rounded rectangular glasses while rubbing his whitish-blonde combover. He was dressed in a formal black suit with white undershirt and black tie. "Now which one of you wants to go next?"

    ~~~~~~~~~~

    That's...really all that happened in class. Watching other people battle. Each time, it was a different set of two who stepped up. As I learned from talking with the people next to me - not nearly as receptive as those in the Battling class, although that's not necessarily entirely negative - those on their third year of the course were exemplifying their skills today. The reason for this was to show the teacher, Mr. Baiaz, how they've improved since last year, as well as give the most recent entrants a taste of what was to come.

    "That's the end of the class for today." said the teacher as the clock struck noon on the dot. "I hope our new students were able to learn a little from those battles. We'll begin lessons proper next time, which will be on Friday afternoon. I'll also have an important announcement to make then, so don't miss class."

    That was it. That was how he sent us off. I involuntarily breathed a sigh of relief at this. I sat patiently, waiting for the crowd to funnel through the bottleneck that was the halls of this floor. I did it yesterday because I was just in a calmed state of mind. Today, I authentically didn't want to get caught up in the mix, let alone in that cramped space. On the subject of the class, I guess I was worried about nothing. It was different...but not as destitute as I thought it could be.

    A few others had continued to lounge around as well, which made me not stand out as much when I finally stood to leave. After a quick roll of my shoulders, I trekked back to the hallway. Something occurred to me while I was doing so, too. If this is the advanced class and I'm way overqualified to be in Battling as the implication given was, then maybe this isn't going to be so bad.

    "Hey, shithead!"

    I whirled around and was shocked - though I shouldn't have been shocked - to see Cronus Aporon. In my stupefaction, I failed to realize he would be in this class. But even granted that, what I would not have expected were the three other young men standing before him.

    The first of these was dressed as if he were headed to prom, in a spring green monkey suit with matching black tie. His fair hair, dark blue eyes, and blemish protection were a stark contrast to the guy on the right. The shortest of the bunch, he really could've used some of his friend's makeup, as his face was more acne than skin. His frosted retinas were nearly obscured by thick glasses, and his hair was black, stylized into curly spikes by way of hair gel abuse. Finally, at the front of the pack, and tallest by far of the bunch at 6'0''. In jeans and a white muscle shirt (showing off his fat and pecs), he had a buzz cut and intense sapphire glare that told me right away he was the one who had angrily called me out.

    Come to think of it, it's kind of like a start of a joke! A nerd, a preppy kid, a fratboy, and a jock all walk into a bar...

    "Hey! I'm talkin' you to!"

    "Talking me to what?" I sarcastically said. This got the nerd and prep to chuckle.

    "Shut up!" he seethed, silencing them. "And you! You little RUNT!"

    "Little runt?" I asked, with mock bewilderment. "But I have more muscle than you, with 80% less fat!" It was true. I may have been much shorter, and although I was stretching the truth with the muscles part, I'm certainly in better shape than him for lack of fat alone. My comments again got the other two to laugh, and even Aporon seemed to crack a slight smile.

    "I told you two to shut up!" he screamed, practically boring a hole through them with a glare alone for several seconds, before turning his wrath back to me. "Look here, shithead. We heard what happened between Cronus and you."

    "We heard you insulted his person." The prep sounded overtly dignified with this matter-of-fact statement, but at least he was being polite to me. Sort of.

    "Yeah, and then you heh, tried to start something with him at the lake!" The nerd was the opposite. Lecherous in tone and posture, mere sight of this sleazy geek perturbed me.

    Three very angry young men. And yet I just blankly stared back at them. "So?"

    The fratboy lowered his voice. "So now, we're gonna all have a talk about it."

    I took a look at each of them, trying to figure out how to best handle this situation. So far, I'd been running on impulse. The words that ultimately came out of my mouth were an apathetic, "Right, right." I turned to the only of the four men before me who seemed civil. "Aporon, who the hell are these tools, and why are you hiding behind them?"

    He immediately raised his palms in defense, over the astonished response of his goons to my slight toward them. "Hey. This was his idea, not mine." he said, pointing to the fratboy.

    "His idea." scoffed the prep.

    "Yeah, hehe. It was him."

    "All right." I accepted, crossing my arms and turning to face the fratboy. Doesn't answer my question as to why he's hiding behind them, but that's okay. "So what's your problem?"

    "I ain't got a problem, you got a problem!" he retorted, nearly bursting a vein on his forehead trying to stare me down. "You don't mess with Cronus Aporon. Understand? There's comsequences for nessing with him. You. SHITHEAD."

    He moved towards me threateningly, but was nearly taken off his feet in surprise when I shoved him preemptively. He went stumbling towards Aporon, who calmly caught his shoulders before he was bowled over. "You're right, maybe I am being a bit a shithead right now," I admitted as I rubbed my head. Ironically summoning the smugest grin I could muster, and with a flip of my hair, I said with snark, "But least I'm not full of shit."

    The prep let out a self-superior snort. "Hmph! Cronus Aporon is-"

    Really starting to get tired of this conversation. "Yeah, yeah. Crown jewel of the university, four oh grade point average, one of the best battlers here, yadda yadda yadda. What's your point?"

    Ignoring my interruption, he continued, "As his friends, he has personally tutored each one of us. We are all highly talented."

    "Ah." Finally. Some sense. "So you're looking for a battle?"

    The fratboy took a step forward, fist ready to pump (or lash out). "That's right. I want to battle you! You're going down!"

    Without even waiting for a response, he pulled out a red, white, and blue ball and hurled it across his chest. Out came something that looked like it escaped from an insane asylum. Shaggy hair covered most of its body, save for a pig's snout and sneering eyes. Shackles were attached to each of its limbs, the right ankle and left wrist not quite being torn off cleanly as apparent by a couple chain-links remaining on each. Its hands also seemed to have been shielded, though short nails tearing out from the inside suggested that effort totally ended well.

    Since he insists. I reached in and retrieved Mareep's Poké Ball. I figured I need to give it some battle experience sometime, and what better time than the present? The accuracy's an issue, sure, but from closer range, I might be able to get away with it.

    "Look at that little sheep." taunted the fratboy as I unveiled my choice. "It ain't stands a chance of beating my Primeape!"

    "Moronsayswhat?"

    "What?" The nerd was the only to laugh at this impulsive shot of mine, and quickly regretted it. "Lawrence, for the last time, SHUT THE FUCK UP. Now you! Show me what you got!"

    "All right." I nodded. "Thundershock!"

    "Uh-uh! Karate Chop, now!"

    A burst of lightning arced out from Mareep's fleece towards...the opposite wall. The three goons saw this and laughed. Maybe this choice wasn't the right one after all. Primeape bound forth, one of its arms raised high. Mareep fired another jolt of electricity as it was about two feet away. This made contact, yet the monkey wasn't even slowed. It still reached and smacked Mareep halfway across the room, inciting more laughter.

    "Edgar, focus." advised a calm Aporon. "I may be overestimating him here, but a Mareep, with the Static ability, against a physical attacker?"

    The fratboy, whose name is apparently Edgar, let out a grumble of acknowledgement. "Fine. Primeape, Secret Power! Now!"

    Four boulders about the size of their caller materialized and one by one shot out towards Mareep. As the first was shooting towards my Pokémon, I told it to "run back!" The sheep didn't even give it a second thought, and barely managed to avoid getting impacted. The second was in motion by that time, crashing into the other and both shattering into several fragments, big and small. This was a problem. The third continued unabated into Mareep. It caught a slight break with the fourth, as this one overshot it and landed so it halted its tumble.

    "Rock Tomb's your next move! Now!"

    Primeape scooped up a number of the pieces of the first and second rocks, before unleashing them with a masterful precision upon a hobbling Mareep.

    "Mareep, come on!" I pleaded. "Get up and use Thunderbolt!"

    It jumped in a panic as the stones crashed down around. Every time the woolly sheep attempted to get out, it found itself cut off. And then, there was no escape. I was completely stuck on what to do. Thoughts of how I could get Mareep out of there rolled through my mind.

    Edgar was really worked up now. "Time's to end this! Primeape, grab a piece of rock, and use Fling! Now!"

    There was no need to hurry, considering their opponent was stuck with no means of escape. Yet the four-and-a-half-foot freak still wasted no time. It psychotically ran over to one of the rocky fragments and snatched it from the floor. It ran backwards before hurling the stone between one of the openings in the prison, smacking Mareep right upside the head. My Pokémon let out a frustrated wail before it slumped over.

    I couldn't believe it. Did that just happen? I kicked myself, only realizing that Discharge might have worked to get it out of there...but it was a little late for that. With a sigh, and set to laughter from all four men, I went over to the unconscious sheep, moving aside some of the rocks to get to it.

    "That was fucking pathetic." Edgar had a wicked, self-satisfied grin on his face

    "Well, I did just get my Mareep." I explained, but they weren't taking it.

    "I said it was fucking pathetic!" he snapped. "David, Lawrence, what you two think?"

    "Hmph. Akin to the efforts of a lowly peasant." said the preppy David.

    "Heh heh! That was so humiliating! You should be so humiliated!" Lawrence, the nerd, was cackling and acting even loonier than his cohort's Pokémon..

    I cringed a little. I thought about my response for a moment before saying, "Sorry, I guess underestimated you." I recalled the unconscious Mareep, and returned it to my pocket. That wasn't how I was hoping that would go. It really killed the buzz I was on from that initial exchange. Not at all ready to throw in the towel though, I retrieved a second Poké Ball. I turned back with a more focused air. "But now it's your turn for humiliation. See if you can beat this Pokémon!"

    "Ha!" Edgar scoffed. "If it's as good as that last one, I'd say it's a waste of time."

    "Bitch, you're too scared." I mocked.

    "Fine, I'll do it! You're going down! Again!"

    Simpler than I thought it would be. I'd thought about using Tangela for this matchup. It'd be all too easy to wrap it up with that. However, knowing that they'd more than likely be expecting it after its performance at the lake, I decided to go with Nidorina here. When she emerged, she took one look at the fat ape before her and growled. She could hardly wait for my command, restlessly scraping her front right paw against the floor, and returning her foe's enraged glare with one of her own.

    "You got the first move this time." I offered.

    "It doesn't matter. Primeape, Fling!" Upon its trainer's boisterous command, Primeape picked up another fragment of rock. Spinning its arm around to make this one count, it vigorously drove it right down the middle towards Nidorina.

    But my Pokémon wasn't having any of that. Nidorina could've easily avoided the stone by hopping to the side, but she instead opted to turn around and kick it to pieces. Before they could even finish reacting to my Pokémon's aggressive counter to the move, I gave a command of my own.

    "Nidorina, Poison Sting!" I said. With more gusto than the day before, my Pokémon began to shake its entire body. Before I knew it, the barbs were off and headed straight for Primeape.

    Edgar yelled almost impulsively, "Thrash, right now!"

    I'd seen Thrash a few times before including this morning - the Pokémon flails and lashes about recklessly in order to do heavy damage to its foe, at the price of being dazed afterwards. But this was a little different: the Pokémon simply span around like a top. Nidorina and I cringed when her attack was simply deflected off their target, which was now headed right for her! Edgar saw my body language and gave the word.

    "Primeape, move in for the kill! Now!"

    What he didn't see was me making a subtle waving motion with my fingers. The ape was erratically closing the distance. Nidorina picked up on the cue, and stood valiantly in place. As its foe drew nearer, so did the threat of taking heavy damage. It snorted and crouched, ready to make its move.

    Right before Primeape reached it, Nidorina leapt clean over the twirling Pokémon. The action seemed to slow down for a moment as the airborne creature looked over her shoulder, pulled her hind legs back, and Double Kicked our adversary straight down. Primeape was knocked out of its spin and face-first onto the hard floor. The goons and even Aporon just flipped at this development, so much so that they failed to notice that immediately after landing, Nidorina had continued attacking their representative. It was like she was walking backwards, except she was kicking with each step of the back leg. Her downed foe was crawling and stumbling, desperately trying to get away. Nothing it tried helped, and it just kept eating kick after kick.

    "Primeape, get up goddamn it! Use Fury Swipes! NOW!!" Edgar screamed frustratingly, face beat-red. Though his Pokémon was able to carry out the command, all it could do was go in reverse as it desperately tried to fend off Nidorina's feet of fury. It wasn't getting totally pummelled anymore, but Nidorina was still hitting its fists with her feet more than Primeape was hitting her feet with its fists. More inauspiciously, it was slowly being backed into a corner. Before long, it'd literally have its back to the wall. And then...

    "SEISMIC TOSS!! RIGHT NOW!!" Wait, what the hell? Primeape caught Nidorina's leg in its arms. The creature attempted to kick back with its other leg, only for that one to be blocked and held in its foe's other hand. Effortlessly, the furious Pokémon span and tossed Nidorina across the room nearly into the opposite wall. Edgar's self-superior demeanor returned. "Consider that one a freebie, kid."

    "Come on, Nidorina." I encouraged. She was trying to get up, but was in a daze after that throw.

    "All right, time to put you out on your misery! Primeape, end it with Close Combat! NOW!"

    Nidorina stood to her feet just as our opponent broke into a deranged charge. In the ape's eyes, I could see more fury than before. Its movements were so spastic, the chains on its shackles were whipping wildly about. The opening was right there in front of me.

    "Nidorina, POISON JAB!"

    With those words, my Pokémon broke into a charge of its own. Nidorina lowered her head. The tiny horn on it obtained a faint purple glow. She was running straight for her prey, and her prey was running straight for her. A collision between the two was imminent.

    As the two combatants reached one another, Primeape threw a vicious right hook. It missed, and would've missed wildly had Nidorina not sprang off the ground and rammed into it. The pig monkey Pokémon was taken right off its feet. Nidorina was screaming, Primeape was screaming, and Edgar was screaming too. With one last shove, his Pokémon was sent rolling backwards towards the wall. The blue creature slowed to a stop and snorted in derision, simply watching as her opponent crashed face-first and comically flopped down unconscious.

    "Edgar, you dumbass!" immediately scolded Aporon. "I told you before! Don't take such stupid risks when finishing an opponent off!"

    "Sorry, Cronus..." was all he could say, as he called back his Pokémon. Under the pretense that he did enough damage to Nidorina to take it out with that move, anyway.

    Aporon turned to me and applauded, "Not bad, Westmyn. Not bad. Maybe you could handle a Gyarados after all." His tone was a genuine one, turning harsh with his next statement. "But you still have a LONG way to go if you even think you're as good as me." He turned and started to exit, his friends only thinking to follow when he said, "Come on, you guys."

    The prep left without further action. The geek gave me a dirty look before leaving himself. Edgar was last to go, staring at his Pokémon's ball until his friends had left the room, before threatening, "This ain't over, shithead." and taking his leave.

    I let out a deep sigh and shook my head after they were gone. Nidorina was disappointed about this, fretfully sitting in front of me. It was only at this point that I noticed a few people had been watching with intrigue. I smiled and shrugged to acknowledge their presence, but didn't do anything besides before I left myself.

    ----------

    I found my friends waiting for me just outside near the Student Square. Reika was already contently eating another one of Thatcher's dad's sandwiches. He, on the other hand, was sitting restlessly, staring at the front doors. He stood up and greeted me as soon as I was within earshot.

    "Fritz, what took you?" he said, approaching with a sandwich in hand.

    "Sorry guys, Aporon and his cronies held me up." I replied, accepting the gift, but not unwrapping it. I went on to explain to them the events that had just transpired.

    "Wow." Thatcher said in awe. "Your Nidorina sounds like a tough Pokémon!"

    I hadn't recalled her after the battle, and sort of had her follow me out as a way of letting her walk off her remaining agitation. She posed tall and proud when she heard the compliment. That placated her enough, I think, so I returned her at that point.

    "So what's it like up on the fourth floor? I-I mean, up in, you know, Tactics class and stuff?" Thatcher had a faint admiration in his voice. Come to think of it...it's the same tone he took on when speaking with Aporon yesterday. Well, maybe not quite as nervous.

    "The whole floor is dedicated to the class." I happily explained, speaking about what I had seen, and was told from chatting with the people beside me. "It has a bunch of battlefields, and a big classroom, and stands, and these funny hallways, and this cool break room." Of course, any and all of it could've been made up. I hope it's not though. Because whatever that cool break room is like, I really want to see it.

    "Cool!" he said. "You're lucky to be in that class, Fritz!"

    My smile faded and I sighed. "Still, it was a bit of a pain. Having to deal with those guys, I mean."

    "Yeah." Reika spoke up, just having finished off her meal. "Well, you kind of deserved it, you know. You brought it on yourself when you made Cronus Aporon mad."

    On the inside, I disagreed. But what was I supposed to say to her? That I think I could take him? That I just had to defend myself verbally? Or physically? That I didn't ask to be moved up a class? Most of all reminding her that if I didn't take action back at the lake, Thatcher could've been hurt or killed?

    The only word that was able to escape my mouth was, "Maybe..."
    Don't know what to put here.

  10. #10
    Poet Laureate AiedailEclipsed's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Story of Fritz Westmyn: The Turning World

    Yay! Update!

    I like the chapter (if it was a bit shorter than I'm used to). Just spotted a few things that we talked about on Skype, and I have to say that Reika is certainly interesting. She's faintly pissing me off, but at the same time, I think that she's going to end up coming from some tragic backstory and I'm going to be all "WHY DID I FEEL THAT WAY?!! ; - ;" But yeah, for now I just want to slap her.

    Random comment that only you will understand: I dislike M.P. so incredibly much. My comments on the battling style still hold true after seeing it in action, I think.

    Also, eagerly awaiting the new chapter :D

    PS: TABLE OF CONTENTS YAY!
    "Be careful what you wish for, because you just might get it."
    -- Narrator, Pokemon: Jirachi Wish Maker
    "You can't change the world without getting your hands dirty."
    -- Lelouch Lamperouge, Code Geass: Lelouch of the Rebellion
    "Do I have a stamp on my forehead that says, 'The National Spokesperson for the Plight of Black People'? How the hell should I know the black perspective on The Color Purple? That's it, if I don't change classes, I'm gonna hurt this fool. Teachers treat me like I'm some kind of Rosetta stone for African-Americans. What? Black people learn how to read, and we all miraculously come to the same conclusion?"
    -- Victoria, Freedom Writers
    "N's heart is pure and innocent. But there is nothing more beautiful and terrifying than innocence."
    -- Concordia, Pokémon Black/White 2

  11. #11
    THE CULT OF PERSONALITY System Error's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Story of Fritz Westmyn: The Turning World

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    Chapter 1-5: The Big Picture



    Despite far more having happened in the days before, yesterday had really exhausted me. It wasn't a product of gradual build-up, nor did it have anything to do with mental fatigue. It's just that one part of the day just came out of nowhere and hit me hard. So much so, that I could hardly remember what happened after it. None of it stood out enough. I mean, how could it? I got into an argument and Pokémon battle with one of the cohorts of my...I suppose you'd call him my rival, and one of the school's most popular and well-respected battlers.

    I was worried that he would have the rest of the class under his thumb. That I'd get nothing but scorn from them, as Reika had warned me. And although it wasn't to that level, there was atypical disregard for me. A foil to my other classes, where I border on luminary. I'd like to believe it would carry over into more than just my own peer group. Could Aporon have had something to do with that? Anything's possible. All I know is that yesterday's events had tired me out.

    What about today? Today, I found myself marching for locations unknown, along with seemingly everyone else in the school. After going to Art class, we were informed that it was cancelled in favor of...something else. Thatcher was disheartened by that announcement. The only senior to his slumped posture was my own drooping stance.

    "So," I wearily asked my friends. I hadn't slept well last night and was still a little groggy. Not to make light of all that was on my mind. "Where are we going again?"

    "There's a school-wide assembly." Reika explained. We, and everyone else, were walking somewhere. I think towards the woods beyond the lake. "We have to go to the Rangerism and Breeding stables."

    "Wha-? Rangerism? Breeding?" I yawned. They'd completely lost me.

    "Oh, they have those classes in their own building." Thatcher elaborated. He adjusted his glasses slightly. "They built it in the forest." Explaining where we were headed, but not my question.

    "No. I mean, what's with all these different classes? There's the four we have...well, I guess three that we have. Tactics and Battling class too." I hoped my words were coming off as coherent enough. I could barely think straight. "But...these ones now? I don't...get it. Like, how do classes here work? How many are there?"

    "A-all right." He didn't expect for me to put him on the spot, but started explaining it as best as he could. "See, students at Rukh's University go through four years of schooling. Their first year, they have the basic classes: Socials. Biology. Battling. And Art. But they have several different classes to choose from for the three years beyond. There's Research, Gardening, History, Medical, Tactics, Contests...and others. In total, I...think there's around fifteen?"

    "That's it?" Upon saying that, I wasn't sure if I was checking for further details or...what else.

    "Sorry," he apologized, "I'm not too sure how things work around here."

    I had no reason to hold it against him. "You don't need to apologize. I was just wondering." I gave him a thumbs up to show my appreciation. I guess his not knowing can be attributed to Dean Howard and his expansion of the school. He implied he was changing it up the other day...so maybe what was applicable back then isn't applicable anymore.

    As we trudged forth into the woods, something suddenly occurred to me. The realization was enough to make me halt on the spot and snap upwards. Momentarily, I was defying my exhaustion. "Wait." My friends stopped and turned to me, confused. "We're going to be having an assembly in a zoo? Isn't that like, a bad idea?"

    "It's okay." an unconcerned Thatcher clarified. He affirmed it matter-of-factly, "They keep the Pokémon in titanium cages when they're not having class. The only reason we have to go there is because it's the only one big enough for all the students to be in."

    That I guess would be another consequence of Dean Howard's expansion. I suppose constructing a larger auditorium wasn't a priority given the available substitute. After expressions of confirmation between him and myself, the rest of the trip passed without further incident or discussion.

    ~~~~~~~~~~

    It only took about three minutes of walking through the beaten path in the woods to reach our destination. Aside from what was necessary to carve for it to fit, the surrounding trees had been left in an untouched state. Surreal how they managed to do it. The building itself was comprised almost wholly of lumber. I wouldn't call it a log cabin since it had the second-largest area on-campus (being two stories tall, I'm unsure about volume), but the materials used were identical. If I were any less alert, I may have mistaken it for part of the forest.

    Stepping inside, the interior of the stables felt no different from the exterior. At once, we had entered into a very spacious room. It was much larger than the proper auditorium and had just as much height, but unlike its counterpart, it was only a portion of the building it was in. The same kind of chairs as we saw before had been set up here. There was around...hell, I don't know. Enough for everyone, for sure, laid out in a half-hexagon shape. In other words, there was like, lots of rows of seats pointed directly at the makeshift stage, and on either side were more rows, tilted at an angle. Every four rows or so were higher elevated than the rest.

    "Not bad, huh?" A young man with a slight rural accent had noticed us examining the arrangement and was chatting us up; presumably he's one of the students who attends one of the two classes held here. "Can't even tell what was here before." Tall and fit, he had on the closest thing to a uniform I had seen in this school devoid of them. The upper half of his t-shirt was a light blue, and the lower half was white. Over it, he had a red vest, with three compartments. That was a lot, but it was dwarfed by the pockets on his functional knee-length black shorts. On the end of each leg was an orange lining, matching the pattern on his hiking boots and fingerless gloves. His hair was black, but the style wasn't clear due to the derby he wore over it.

    "I...I guess." Thatcher said, grasping his jacket slightly. It doesn't surprise me too much. Random people talking to him out of the blue was probably a foreign concept to him.

    "You only guess?" The guy spoke as if he was expecting just a little more.

    "W-well," Thatcher nervously started, a little frightened even by a mere expectant tone, "We don't actually know what was here before, so..." He quickly turned away, flustered by the experience. "But, it is nice."

    "I guess you got a point." The young man casually shrugged, then turned to me with a look of recognition. "Hey. You're that Fritz fellow, right?"

    "Yeah, that's me." His words were hardly registering with me. I didn't show it in how I replied, part of my attempt to rouse myself to alertness.

    "Best place to sit's right there, in the back right." he said, pointing to the specified area as he did so. It wasn't clear why that would be the case, aside from how few people had occupied it yet.

    "Cool. Thanks."

    Deciding to listen to him, I led my friends to the proper spot. We elected for two rows from the back. I sat down on the chair at the end, with Reika on my left and a wall on my right. The latter was quite nice to lean on, or at least attempt to.

    The three of us sat in silence for a while. Around 10 minutes or so. Students and teachers continued to enter and pile into the seats. Preference was being granted to the middle partition (followed by the left, and the right), and most groups chose to sit as close as they could. Come to think of it...that's how it worked with the new student assembly, too. Also similar was how all that was audible were occasional low murmurs. It was quieter than the initiation assembly, even with over triple the number of people present. Reika may have thought of something else this may have had in common, as she turned to me and whispered, "Wonder how long this one's going to take."

    "As long as it doesn't take as long as the last one." I replied, and as soon as I finished my sentence, it began. The lights went out. The advice of the helpful student became apparent: we were situated in the darkest section. Light applause broke out as Dean Howard power-strutted onto the scene, grinning like he didn't have a care in the world.

    "Thank you, thank you." he acknowledged. "Three days ago, I was approached by someone offering to do a presentation at my school. Ordinarily, I would've refused, citing it as a frivolous expenditure better spent on development. Development that would benefit you. Yet as they explained to me, this is a free arrangement, being granted to all education faculties in the country. Ergo, we were able to come to an understanding." Knowing the kind of person he is, odds are he isn't one to pass up a handout. No matter what exactly it may be. The principal stated with all the formality of a businessman, "I decided that it would be in our best interests to book this seminar for the beginning of the year."

    Two days earlier, Mr. Finkerton had made his exploitative contempt for 95% of the people here clear to me. The way he was playing his cards right now though, you never would've guessed that might be the case. The audience paid him full respect, exemplified when he sneezed before finishing the introduction. "Excuse me. With that being said, give your rapport to Mr. Theodore William Rogers-Louis."

    The audience clapped as a dapper old man in a green cardigan stepped onto the stage while waving. The wheel of time had treated him well, his pure white hair having signs that it hadn't receded even a centimeter. Beneath his extravagant sweater was a white undershirt and striped red tie. Despite this semi-formal upper body wear, he had on simple black cargo pants and ordinary white sneakers.

    "Hello there! Sorry to keep you waiting. Welcome to the world of harmony." he enlivened with another wave. "My name is Theo. People call me the Pokémon Shepherd."

    He retrieved a green and white ball from his vest, and threw a familiar-looking creature inside onto the floor. Much like my Nidorina, this male counterpart has spiny skin and a single horn on the forehead. However, this one's scales are an off-lavender or even a shade of amethyst, and its horn is - like the needles on its back - far sharper. This Nidorino's ears are also longer. The tradeoff it took was a set of front legs not suited for clawing or lateral movement, and a set of teeth not nearly as sharp. From its stature, I'd wager it's quite young or perhaps vain, yet still a tough one.

    The DNA mishmash posed valiantly as its owner continued his speech. "This world we share with creatures known as Pokémon. We live together with these strange creatures by supporting one another. For some people, Pokémon are pets. Others use them for fights. Myself," he said as he brought back the Nidorino, "I am the spokesperson of the Heritage Delegates."

    "One of my responsibilities is to oversee the younger generation. To guide them through this world of dreams and adventures. To help them achieve their goals in life."

    His voice was oddly hypnotic. It was loud and brazen...yet soothing. My eyelids felt to grow in mass as he droned on and on. Every second that ticked by, it was harder to keep them open. I attempted to stretch my forehead to subjugate this...yet my eyes remained shut. The comfort of the chair wasn't helping me any. My body had given the command. It wanted to rest...just for a minute...

    ~~~~~~~~~~

    "Fritz?" The next thing I knew, I was been shaken by Reika. I lolled my head to the left shoulder and unfurled my eyelids. She was looking down at me, but I couldn't tell if she was upset or not. The tone she used wasn't clear, either. "Fritz? Were you asleep just now?"

    "Yeah." I rubbed my eyes. "Sorry, it was so boring, and I was so tired..."

    "I know." she agreed, putting that thought at ease. "Who wants to hear some old veteran ramble on about something everyone knows? Or about the journey he had when our grandparents hadn't even gotten out of diapers? Or a summary of his entire god damn life?" By the sound of things, he was still going on about that, too. By the look of things, it seemed people were actually interested. Reika let out a snort directed at them, then turned to ask me, "What's the date today?"

    "Thursday." Even in my exhaustion, I was still coherent enough to answer that question. At least she woke me up for something other than spite. Which has happened to me before.

    "No. I mean the day."

    "April 19th?" I was able to answer that one, too.

    "Okay." She turned back to Thatcher and began to whisper to him. I couldn't hear what they were saying over the old timer's voice. Unsure of how long I was asleep, but I didn't feel tired anymore, so I assume it was long enough. With a mighty stretch and yawn, I was able to sit up and open my eyes and ears.

    "The point I am trying to make here is that Pokémon are our friends and partners. They have been since the beginning. That's something I never forgot." From what he was saying now, I gather that I missed the whole thing. Not that there was much to miss, given what Reika told me. "Whether I was traveling cross-country, or fighting for freedom in another...whether it was my own partners, or someone else's, or those who roam freely across the lands, I treated Pokémon with love and respect. When they were ill, I nursed them to health. When I was ill, they would return the favor. If I saw a Pokémon or trainer in need, I would do whatever I could to assist them. I never forgot that philosophy through the ninety plus years I have been alive, and I hope none of you forget that."

    His voice turned grim, even sorrowful with his next statement. "However, there are many people in this world who would do the opposite. Dark souls who view Pokémon as only existing for our benefit. Ones who would use them solely for profit. Even those who aim for conquest. Among them, the Team Rockets, the Team Spitzers, and the Mahou Gangs of the country. You may have even witnessed your peers treat Pokémon in similar ways. I urge any of you who knows someone who has an unhealthy relationship with Pokémon. Please. Help them see the error of their ways."

    "But, let it be known that there is far worse in the world." Now it was with repugnance that he was talking. His hands were pinching the podium, and he was leaning forward, head tilted down. "The worst of the impure and misguided in our nation are but pests. The truly reprehensible monsters make their den across the vast ocean." Everyone, and I do mean EVERYONE perked up at this. From where I sat I had a perfect view of everyone halting their tired slumps, use of electronics, and idle conversations - Reika and Thatcher included - snapping up, and looking straight at the man. Everyone knew what he was talking about...

    "The United States." were the venomous words he expelled next. "That wretched nation and their affiliates are the most morally corrupt in the world. All North America. Most of Europe. The Middle East. Egypt. Western Russia. You can add all of those - and more - to the blacklist!"

    He was akin to a preacher as he spoke on, "Those countries do not live in the harmony with Pokémon that we choose to live in. They do not view Pokémon as friends, only as servants. The US most of all views them as nothing more than common animals, yet the true animals are they! Nonstop battling, exhibition of outer beauty, destruction of habitat, ignorance to troubling issues, no respect for other peoples' or countries' views. The list of their sins goes on forever."

    Was not expecting this to turn political. Like I implied before, history and social sciences never were my favorite subjects.

    "They think they are the rightful owners of this planet. That their ways and their rules should be what all adhere to. Their violent, ignorant, materialistic mannerisms. They may deny it, they may not say it outright, but their actions speak for themselves! And we must-"

    There was an abrupt pause. He put a hand over his ear. "Oh, but would you look at the time? I've gone on about those ogres for so long, you almost missed lunch!" Had it really been that long? He was back to his chipper attitude, and this shift got much of the crowd to laugh. "Thank you for your time, ladies and gentlemen. To wrap up, I'll leave you with this."

    "It is important that humanity treat Pokémon and the environment with love and respect. I have seen it all throughout my long life. And the people who do that, no matter if they are fighting in wars, fighting in arenas, or fighting in the wild. It doesn't matter if they are trainers, travelers, coordinators, breeders, rangers, scientists, chefs, researchers, or entertainers. Whether they surround themselves with many or few Pokémon. Whether they prefer solitude or companionship, whether they're obscure or famous. If their dreams are fame, fortune, challenge, pride, power, or simply to be the best. None of that matters in the end."

    "Because in the end, those who love and respect nature are the ones who go on to live the most fulfilling lives. And if your generation can do something, anything to achieve what those before you could not, perhaps the future that awaits us - all of us on this planet - will be a truly peaceful one, free of all strife."

    "If you have any questions for me about anything, I'll be in town for the next few days. Thank you again, and enjoy the rest of your school year."

    ~~~~~~~~~~

    The silence was deafening as the student body made the trek out of the woods. The three of us were no exception. It was a lot to take in towards the end. Thatcher was the first of us to speak, and when he did so, it was awkward. He stepped off to the side, paused in his tracks and lowered his head. Reika and I followed his lead. "That was," his eyes and voice were downcast, but it was unlike his earlier depressed demeanor. "Different."

    "In a way." said a frustrated-sounding Reika.

    My friends noticed my abnormal silence after a few seconds. At least Thatcher did, because he asked me with concern, "Fritz, what's wrong?"

    "Oh. I'm...just mad, that's all." I wearily sighed, still a little tired. "Mad that there are people in the world that treat Pokémon that way. Especially those Americans."

    "I know." agreed Reika. "What is wrong with them? I can't believe those ASSHOLES!"

    "Reika, I thought you said the assembly was stupid." I said, almost teasingly. Maybe in attempt to brighten the mood a bit. "His influence didn't rub off on you, did it?" I'd never really paid much thought to those kinds of political issues, and wasn't ready to take a side on this matter. It's just hard to judge. I mean, they wouldn't be saying that if there wasn't SOME element of truth to it. The question is, what parts are true, what parts are exaggerated, and what's made up? Besides, for all we know, they could view us as uptight, unforgiving bigots or something. And given the teachers' views on me...

    "No. I've always known about them. And I've always felt that way. He just made me more sure of myself." She shook her head, and her fist trembled. With a frustrated grumble, she clamored, "I can't believe them! They make their poor Pokémon battle all the time, then just soullessly heal their wounds like it's no big deal over and over again. It's disgusting!"

    She's referring to the healing machine, if I'm not mistaken. They instantly revitalize a Pokémon and heal most ordinary injuries. But they'll still be hungry. Furthermore, more serious wounds can't be fixed by the machine. They're outlawed in Japan except in certain circumstances, for some reason. I don't know the specifics. Again, I've never really paid much thought to political issues.

    Reika continued on her rant, "How are they even still around? Wherever they insert themselves into the world, people and Pokémon become miserable! No exceptions! If that place was more like The Pressing Isshu, everyone would be happier for it! But they're just too damn selfish! Everyone from it, everyone in it! Why can't anyone there see things the way we do?"

    Thatcher was a little put off by our friend suddenly becoming fired up. He trembled a little as he stammered, "But...but what can we do about it? I mean, there's enough bad groups and bad people here."

    "I know, Thatcher." Reika relented. She sighed depressively. "There's a lot of bad people in the world. But there's justice here for the few who treat Pokémon wrong. No one even cares over there. It's ridiculous! They're as bad as Pokémon Hunters!" Her voice was becoming wrathful again, and she practically screamed her next words to the heavens. "Why is there no justice for them? I don't know why any sane person would want to live the way they do! They are cruel, lying, cheating, selfish, ruthless, honorless, self-superior, unapologetic BASTARDS. And they have the nerve to act like they're so great! If I ever met someone like that, I'd give them a piece of my mind!"

    Again, an awkward silence. This bout lasted for nearly twice as long as the previous one. I took the initiative, pressing onward once more. I was also the next to speak. "What kind of name is the Heritage Delegates anyway? It sounds weird."

    "Fritz," Thatcher said, "The Heritage Delegates is a legitimate organization. It was founded over half a century ago. Mr. Louis was one of the founding members. They are a little weird...about it, I know. But they mean well. They educate people about the country and it's history, so that future generations can...uh...don't have the same problems."

    "Isn't that our teachers' job, though?" I recalled the Dean talking about how it was offered to every school in the district, or something to that effect. Why do that when we're learning about it anyway?

    "A little. The Heritage Delegates has...you know...it's about the people...and our Socials class and History here are..." He clearly didn't know how to explain it. Or didn't know how to explain it clearly.

    I finished his sentence with a guess. One that came off a little more refined that I was intending, "The Delegates enlighten people about the finer parts of our culture?"

    "Yeah," he confirmed. "Th-that's...right. And they help make sure...you know, that people stay on the right path."

    I thought about this for a few moments. They wouldn't just spread the word to schools, would they? After all, for every person who goes to one, there's like ten who choose to travel. Though to be honest, I just pulled that ratio out of nowhere. "That clears a few things up." I said. Only a few things.

    Turning to look at Reika, she still seemed a little upset. Her hands were still clenched, her joints were rigid, and though her head was lowered, her expression still exuded rage.

    "So what now?" I pondered, hoping to drive us away from this vexatious conversation. My rumbling stomach helped to answer that question. "The cafeteria's gotten the spoilage worked out, but it's probably going to have a really long line today."

    "I still have a bunch of my dad's sandwiches." Thatcher responded. "We can go to my dorm and eat those before Sciences starts."

    I just had to give him a confused stare. "Thatcher, how many of those do you have?"

    "Twenty, I think?" he replied, rustling his hair slightly. "He gave me them before I came here, and said they would help tide me over. I keep most of them in a fridge in my room so they don't get moldy." An explanation good enough for me, and a prospect that seemed to brighten Reika's mood a bit.

    "Sounds like a plan, then." I responded with a nod. "Let's go do that."

    ==========

    As with yesterday, the class that followed and latter half paled in contrast to the first part. My friends and I split off rather early in the evening, so I went ahead and familiarized myself with part of the grounds in the meantime. I considered checking out the Heritage Delegates in town, but decided against it once I realized I had little knowledge of the municipality, let alone where they would be situated. So the rest of the day was fairly uneventful.

    Until that night, when I was awoken by a hard knocking and muffled voice at my door.

    I ignored it. Yet whoever was there persisted, knocking even harder. When I still failed to respond, they...opened the door? I guess I'd forgotten to lock it.

    I heard two sets of feet approaching my bed. My vision was barely adequate between the darkness and tiredness...yet I could distinguish the pudgy contour of one and gaunt shape of the other as my friends. But why were they here? One of them opened their mouth and addressed me.

    "Fritz, wake up. We're heading out."
    Don't know what to put here.

  12. #12
    Poet Laureate AiedailEclipsed's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Story of Fritz Westmyn: The Turning World

    Well. we conversed about most of this chapter already. xP Even so... Like I said, the whole spiel was a bit random and seemed vaguely out of place and filler-y. Other than that, I can't really comment. Also, I wonder what those three are going to get up to now. :3
    "Be careful what you wish for, because you just might get it."
    -- Narrator, Pokemon: Jirachi Wish Maker
    "You can't change the world without getting your hands dirty."
    -- Lelouch Lamperouge, Code Geass: Lelouch of the Rebellion
    "Do I have a stamp on my forehead that says, 'The National Spokesperson for the Plight of Black People'? How the hell should I know the black perspective on The Color Purple? That's it, if I don't change classes, I'm gonna hurt this fool. Teachers treat me like I'm some kind of Rosetta stone for African-Americans. What? Black people learn how to read, and we all miraculously come to the same conclusion?"
    -- Victoria, Freedom Writers
    "N's heart is pure and innocent. But there is nothing more beautiful and terrifying than innocence."
    -- Concordia, Pokémon Black/White 2

  13. #13
    THE CULT OF PERSONALITY System Error's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Story of Fritz Westmyn: The Turning World

    Chapter 1-6: Latent Reservation



    I tiredly looked up at my two friends, their words not quite having registered just yet. I think they said to get up? Thatcher was wearing...an outfit like...an explorer's outfit. Like...something a mountain climber would wear...or an archaeologist. I'm not sure. But he definitely was dressed to go places. Reika had on...her clothes from earlier. They were wide awake.

    "Fritz, come on." said one of them. "Get dressed, get your Pokémon, and let's go." Upon that, and a few whispers shared between each other, they stepped outside. Not bothering to explain the purpose. I guess I was too tired to argue, however.

    Crawling out of the bed, I decided to take a cue from my female friend. I slipped on my shirt from earlier today - sort of a black vest or jacket, with gray smoke billowing.up from the orange and red blaze at the bottom. I wasn't going to button it up at first out of unwillingness to fight my fatigue, but after thinking it might be a little frigid and the possibility of mosquitoes, I thought better of it. In a similar vein, I opted for my pants from two days ago.

    Reika and Thatcher were waiting for me at the top of the stairs in the darkened hallways. All that illuminated the whitewall, blue and brown carpeting, and wooden doors were the suppressed emergency lights. They were dim enough that if you were there, you might hardly have noticed my holding the handrail as we made the descent down each flight, as though my life depended on it. Falling down a flight of steps isn't enjoyable, particularly when half-asleep. I only let go after taking the very last step down. Hallway, stairwell, hallway, stairwell, hallway, stairwell. That zigzag took us to the base floor, where the door out awaited.

    "Reika? Thatcher? Where are we going?" My response wasn't as groggy as this morning, and I was able to keep my head raised, but not to belittle the exhausted state I was in. "And...why now?"

    "Fritz, come on." Reika urged, not answering my question in favor of telling me to keep up. I was lagging a bit behind...the product of using a little more caution in my step than typical.

    For the second time, my exhausted self was being led from the paved path and towards the woods. We passed by the offices on the way. A few lights were on within. Reika and Thatcher mumbled about how to approach this. It took them longer than someone who was half-asleep to notice the windows/drapes were closed, so the risk of being seen was minimal and we could just walk by and into the forest. It didn't feel too different at night than they did during the day. The main and most expected difference was that the sounds of nocturnal creatures filled the thick air. The cawing of Murkrows, the hooting of Noctowls, and...whatever you want to qualify the sounds that Kricketunes make as. It was a little more peaceful, I didn't feel like there was a risk of being mauled, but something important was on my mind. I tried to get a sentence out, "Why are we..." but trailed off before I could.

    "Fritz, uh, you did um," Thatcher nervously began, not sure on how to put things. "You know about the big cliff in the forest. Er, right?"

    "I've seen it...but why are we going now?"

    "Sorry. It was Reika's idea." He rubbed the nape of his neck. "I thought you might want to come along too." That's quite different from how they put it at first, but it was a little late to argue semantics.

    The walk to the cliff was just a little longer than it took to go to the stables, but the higher density of trees made navigation more treacherous. Good news came in how there were no overgrown roots or tussled branches lying about. Not once did any of us - even myself - trip or almost fall. Eventually, the sight of a large bluff presented itself to us. The composition appears primarily a pale brown. So...I have no idea. Not a geologist. Initially, I thought we were going to scale this thing...and when checking around for the path up, I found what my friends were staring at. The entrance to a cave. I also saw a couple more higher up the mountain.

    "Well, here it is." said Reika, staring up with eager anticipation. "This is gonna be so exciting!"

    "Let's hope so!" agreed Thatcher.

    I mumbled, "I hate you guys so much right now," but they didn't hear me. They walked inside without waiting for me. Sighing, I followed their irreverent lead.

    ----------

    We stepped into...tunnels of rocks and dirt. That's it. There's not much else to say. Presumably. There's some small stalactites and stuff, but that's about it. It's just rocks and dirt. Mostly rocks.

    "It's dark." Thatcher whispered.

    "Well, of course. We're in a cave, silly." Reika's excitement hadn't worn off, and our friend's rhetorical question didn't bother her at all. "Did you bring the light?"

    "Sure did." Thatcher set down his backpack and sifted through it to retrieve a battery-powered brass lantern. With a flick of the switch, the area around us lit up brilliantly. With only smiles, they set off once more. Not even warning me.

    "Where...are we going?"

    "To the top." Reika plainly replied.

    "Why? And...you know...where to get there?" Since they had hauled me out of bed for whatever it is they wanted, it seemed nothing could delay them from achieving...whatever it is they wanted. That is, until I said what I just did. They stopped dead. Mid-step, as if time had been frozen. They nervously faced each other. Ugh. "That's...that's just great, guys. Really great."

    "We're going to try, at least." said Thatcher. I'd clearly dampened their spirits, as they were a little more uncertain in their pathfinding from then on. Which helped me keep up with them.

    ~~~~~~~~~~

    I don't know how we did it. As far as I was could tell, we were in a maze of twisty tunnels, all alike. But somehow, we made it up to a level above without getting lost, confused, or taking a long time. The trip was strangely serene...not a wild Pokémon in sight. This threw me off. I thought for sure we would bump into a Geodude or something, but nothing showed up. Why that could be...I don't know. Just too tired to think straight.


    We wandered the second floor for a while, and eventually found another slope up. Maybe it wasn't a true maze...I think. Like, maybe there's just one more way to go up...maybe that's how we found our way? I don't know. But we did. In the end...isn't that what counts?

    "Fritz, are your shoes squeaking?" Thatcher randomly asked, as we stepped into a grotto on this third level. It was oval-shaped; a little taller and much wider than the rest of the tunnels.

    Synchronized, Reika and I ground to a halt. "That's not me." I pointlessly whispered, seeing as the high-pitched noise continued on after I stopped moving.

    In flew the source. Two long, skinny leggings dangled from their lower bodies. The face of each was just a mouth with four fangs - two on top and bottom - also with gargoyle-like ears. Then there was their flapping wings; the front exposed the indigo, nearly violet skin beneath the very fine layer of dark blue fur that otherwise covered the rest of their body.

    "Zubats." Reika gasped, hushed.

    "Around a dozen of them." I instinctively crouched down, an action that she conformed with. A run-in with the country's most widespread species. This is one way to wake up. At least they didn't notice us...

    ...okay, yet. Thatcher was just staring at them. I had my fingers crossed that he wouldn't do anything dumb. But he screamed. Quiet and trembling at first, but then loud enough to wake the dead. All at once, the Zubats turned our way. They barred their fangs, clearly NOT pleased. My geeky friend instantly scuttled behind us.

    "I think we invaded their nest," Reika shuddered, ignoring or ignorant to the fact that these are pests who don't present other species the same courtesy. "We should get out of here!"

    Thatcher rightfully disagreed. "I-I don't think that's on the t-table right now!" He was right. The bats were poised to swarm us, as if they weren't about to let us go. For a moment, Reika wanted to protest this, but quickly relented.

    "You're right. I guess we have no choice." she reluctantly said, retrieving a ball from her holster and dropping it to the ground. A fluffy pink and white Pokémon appeared before her. Its body was blob-shape, with two pointy ears and a cowlick over its bright blue eyes. It struck a cute pose, standing on one foot, raising its arms, and shaking its booty. Wait, WHAT?

    "Wow!" said Thatcher. "You evolved her?!"

    "Yup!" Reika beamed. "She's a Wigglytuff, now!"

    A grinning Thatcher sent out his Pokémon next: a brown, rodent-looking little guy with beady black eyes. Except for its belly, its entire body (including its tail) was covered in a hide akin to bricks. Two stubby nails lined its hands and feet. It struck a battle pose, stamping down its left foot and leading with its right claws.

    "Thatcher," Reika asked inquisitively, "Is that the same Sandshrew your family had at home?"

    "Y-yeah. It's him all right!" He was attempting to force out pride, but it was not emerging very easily.

    "Cool!"

    My friends were laughing, happy to be catching up with one another. It took my focused words to snap them back to reality. "Don't forget, we have more important things to be worrying about now."

    Now let's think about this. Tangela's a talented and experienced Pokémon, there's no denying that. But in a setting like this against all these opponents, it might not be that great an idea. Against a swarm of bats, Nidorina probably wouldn't perform too well. Neither would blasting water at them do too much, unless it was hot water. And I don't know if my new acquisition knows Scald. Mareep I would use, but its...condition...would make using its moves a bad idea. So that just leaves my pleasant little fox, Eevee.

    It struck no pose, because as soon as it came out of the ball, it ran behind me and started cowering. Reika saw this and voiced her displeasure. "Why would you even send that out? Why not Mareep?!" It's not a decision I like either, but I have to give it a shot.

    I opened my mouth to explain my train of thought, but thought better of the attempt. "Just shut up." I said. "Here they come."

    Immediately, four of the bats descended upon Sandshrew. With a panicked impulse, its trainer yelled, "Sandshrew, look out! Defend yourself!" Given an ambiguous command, the rodent reacted well enough - tightly tucking in its head and limbs to contort into a ball-shape, a quintessential Defense Curl. The Zubats moved in to strike regardless, only succeeding in rolling it about. This must have set off an idea in its brain, as it continued to revolve of its own accord. As its foes were near the ground, it was able to run over a couple of them, Thatcher was surprised at his Pokémon's initiative, as he said, "Sandshrew...good job! I think, get one of them with Fury Swipes!" Uncurling, Sandshrew pounced on one of the victims of Rollout. Brandishing its sharp claws, it went to work on the Zubat. The others' response was too little too late. Sandshrew retracted into a defensive position as soon as they got near. By that time, their comrade was out cold. He was actually doing pretty well.

    Reika was having some trouble. Her Wigglytuff - the largest target - just couldn't keep up with the 6-7 Zubats that were swarming around it. It was managing to keep them away, and that's about it. Reika was shouting orders at seemingly random. "Pound!" she would say, and Wigglytuff would only manage to clip one or two with its stubby fist. "Body Slam!" she would yell, and Wigglytuff would leap up and attempt to smother one beneath its plushy form, usually only doing a faceplant.

    At least she was doing better than Eevee. Three Zubats came swooping in, and the first thing that came to its frantic mind was to kick up dust. Having no eyes to get dirt in, they were completely unimpeded. An attempt to shout a word of warning came too late. A smaller Zubat got there first and bit down on Eevee's tail. It cried out, which seemed to startle the Zubats slightly. "Fight back, Eevee!" I urged. "Quick Attack!" The fox was terrified, every muscle in its legs vibrating. It heard the order at least...it dashed forth towards the Zubat that bit it, which was still near ground level, and made a leaping tackle at it. This sent it towards Wigglytuff, who picked up on the opportunity her trainer was slow to, and finished it off with Body Slam just as the order was being given. At least we were managing something.

    It was around that time that Thatcher turned to me. He had placed the lantern safely down about a meter and a half away. "Fritz, why aren't you using Mareep?" he asked, much more politely.

    I put it simply to him: "Mareep's having trouble aiming its attacks. Sandshrew would be fine if it misfired, but it could hit Wigglytuff. Or even one of us." He understood immediately.

    "Oh. That makes sense." He turned back to Sandshrew, who had just finished off another Zubat in the same manner as prior. It went into a Defense Curl again, but its targets had wised up. A few broke away from Wigglytuff to join in the assault. In unison, six Zubats dove at it. As the rodent contracted tighter in apprehension, his frightful trainer yelped, "Sandshrew...Rapid Spin?!!" Now this was cool, and perfectly timed too. An airborne and revolving Sandshrew repelled its adversaries. Thatcher couldn't believe it worked. I couldn't believe it worked. "G-good. Now Fury Swipes again!"

    A bit of pressure was alleviated from Wigglytuff when a few chose to go after Sandshrew, but it was still having trouble. Reika yelled, "Damn it. You try Defense Curl too!" Her Pokémon tried, at least. It wasn't the right shape to do so effectively, so it was more squatting into the fetal position. The damage being done was starting to take its toll...but at least when it came out of its curl, it surprised one of them long enough to flatten it with Body Slam.

    Eevee was continuing to use Quick Attack, although now as a retreat tactic to distance itself from the two Zubats in pursuit. It grinded to a halt without warning, lying down and shielding its cranium with its front paws. The Zubats flew right over. Eevee noticed their error, and for a moment, seemed as if it were about to take advantage. But once its foes became aware of what happened, they made a u-turn and came back. The chase was back on, except in the opposite direction.

    "This is going nowhere." I lamented as I recalled Eevee.

    "I told you," Reika reiterated, "Use your Mareep! God."

    I ignored her and decided to watch. The numbers were thinning, anyway. Just over half of them remain. The two after my Pokémon split off between Wigglytuff and Sandshrew. The latter is continuing to bring it. The former is improving a little, but it could be attributed to the higher density of targets. The battle's slowly, but surely proceeding in our favor.

    Um?! That is, until 20-30 more Zubats flew into the room, accompanied by three larger specimens. Nearly three times the size (when fully stretched), three-quarters of their front side was a mouth. Their wings were about the same shape, although either side of them advertised the hide beneath the pelt. They had as many fangs as that which they evolved from, but they had a distinctive curvature to accommodate their diet. And also unlike the Zubats, these Golbats had stubby T-shaped legs, slit-like eyes, and a fleshy tongue - albeit one they hesitate to show.

    In unison, the bat Pokémon opened their jaws. Without a hint to what was happening, Sandshrew clutched its ears in pain. The mouse could hardly stand up as what to some was an invisible force reverberated through its head. It was better off than Wigglytuff at least, whose stubby arms couldn't reach far enough to give it protection. It hit the ground as soon as the assault began. It'd be comical if the situation weren't so dire.

    "What's happening?" demanded an annoyed Reika. "Wigglytuff, Body Slam!" However, her convulsing Pokémon didn't hear her through its pained reaction. Trainer's anger dissolved to frantic confusion. "What the HELL is going on?!"

    "They're using Supersonic." I explained. "It's a high-pitched noise-based attack that's extremely irritating to many Pokémon."

    "Noise, huh?" She was irate and sly at the same time. "I'll show them some noise! Wigglytuff, Sing!"

    "Reika, wait!!" I protested, but it was too late. Wigglytuff had taken in a deep breath. All I could do was cover my ears and try to drown out its voice. I squatted down into a defensive position and squinted uncomfortably, just in case.


    When I opened my eyes, the damage was apparent. Reika and Thatcher had fallen victim to the hypnotic song, and had collapsed onto the ground. Sandshrew and Wigglytuff were still up, but so were two of the Golbats and a few of the Zubats. This was a problem. I saw only one solution to it, and so I threw it out there without hesitation.

    Mareep eagerly came leaping out of its home. Needless to say, it was singing a tune of confusion when it saw the mess Wigglytuff had left behind with its singing. Sandshrew and Wigglytuff were desperately trying to fend off the bats without trainer assistance. Neither party had spotted the new arrival yet.

    I grabbed the lamp and ran out of the grotto, as so not to accidentally victimize myself like Reika did. Thankfully, none of the bats gave chase. Once I had rounded the corner, I shouted, "Mareep, DISCHARGE!"

    I didn't keep my head out to see it, but I could still see and hear the results. The screams of bats and my friends echoed through the tunnels as the entire room was illuminated by the expelled electricity. Mareep was able to hold the attack for four seconds before having to cease. I heard a number of thuds under the sound of 20-30 sets of wings all flapping at the same time. All the bats not fried by the move came hastily retreating out, not noticing me crouched there.


    I waited a moment before stepping back into the room to survey the damage. Sandshrew had covered Wigglytuff as best it could. Both Pokémon being up was a good sign. Just like when I had left, a number of bats, as well as Reika and Thatcher, were down on the ground.

    "You guys all right?" I asked, approaching them. Electric attacks are rarely life-threatening, but they can still hurt. I extended a hand to Thatcher to help him to his feet. He was still shaking a little. When I tried to do the same for Reika, she swatted my arm away.

    "FRITZ!!" Reika was absolutely livid with me. "WHAT THE FUCK DID YOU DO?!!" she screamed.

    "I got rid of all the bats." I replied calmly. As calmly as possible, anyway. She was starting to try my patience, but I was using restraint. "It was your idea to use Mareep. I was just doing what you suggested, and it worked."

    She vigorously got to her feet. "I didn't say to zap me too, you RETARD. You should've thought about what was going to happen!"

    "Sorry," I sincerely apologized, "I wanted to get you guys out of the way, but there wasn't enough time."

    "You should be sorry!"

    "Don't you think you're being a little irrational? I mean, Thatcher seems okay." This was fact, although he looked at me with eyes that stated he was staying out of this one.

    She wasn't paying attention, or didn't seem to care. "You DON'T attack other people with your Pokémon! I don't care what the reason is! It's not fair to the Pokémon, and it's not fair to us, either!"

    "I couldn't just leave you there!" I made one last effort to get through to her. And it's strange she should say that. Mareep didn't hesitate, and it's a virtuous Pokémon. It doesn't place us on the level of miscreants. I continued my explanation, "Nidorina and Tangela wouldn't have be able to hit them all, so it was the only choice. It wasn't som-"

    "It wasn't a smart plan at all!" she interrupted. "You shouldn't have done it, Fritz!"

    "Okay, what the hell is your problem?" I wasn't holding back my distaste any longer. "And if you want to talk smart plans and thinking about what was going to happen, why didn't you think about using Sing en masse would do?"

    "That's different. You should know better." Her fists were clenched and her eyes were closed. She was barely keeping herself under control. But not for long.

    "Oh hi, I'm Reika Easton." I mocked. I nailed her voice, too. "If I mess something up, it's okay because I'm soooo dumb. But if my friends do something wrong, god forbid! They better listen to me because I know best!"

    That set her off. She griped, "You're acting immature! Stop it, Fritz!"

    "Me, immature? Who was the one who dragged someone out of bed without thinking to tell them why? Who was the one who got frustrated and used Sing without thinking about what it would do? Who's the one acting like I can do no right?! You're the immature one! In fact," I narrowed my eyes. "Exactly how old are you, Reika Easton?"

    She smugly chuckled before boasting, "I turned eighteen three days ago."

    "So your birthday was a day before school started? You poor, poor girl." She didn't like my saying this too much. For a second, she appeared sad, but it quickly reverted to her furiousness. I took a few steps away and crossed my arms. With a smile, I uncrossed them, span around and said, "I turned nineteen three months ago."

    "Age has nothing to do with maturity!" she instantly snapped.

    "Says the girl who seemed proud of her age a second ago!" I fired back.

    "This was about ethics a minute ago, but you had to go and make it personal!"

    "Maybe if you weren't so provoking!"

    "Says the boy who pissed off the most popular student in school!"

    "I told you, I had no choice there!"

    "Is THAT what you think?"

    "No, I think you're out of your mind!"

    "What do you know?!"

    "More than you! You don't know anything!"

    "Stop it, you two!" Thatcher FINALLY chimed in. He stood between us and spoke with urgency. "This isn't helping us! Come on, we have to keep moving!"

    I crossed my arms tighter than before. "I'm not moving another inch until I know what the hell we're doing here."

    Thatcher frowned. "A-all right. Sorry, this was my fault. I really...really should've told you." he stammered, taking responsibility for the incident. "This is Abet's Bluff. It's kind of famous at Rukh's University. There's a story I've heard...that Reika heard...about a powerful beast living on the mountain. A creature with powers so terrible, that to protect those around it, it only awakens on nights when the moon is not in the sky. No one knows what it is or what it does, but they call it the Beast of Abet." As he told me about this Beast, his voice broke a little.

    "That is a horrible media tag, and why did you not tell me that to begin with?" I said, almost satisfied. And I wasn't sure about this...it didn't feel like a lie, but something still felt off about it.

    "Sorry..." was all he could say. Only a single word, but a word more than good enough for me. You could've cut the tension with a butter knife for the briefest of moments, until I gave my placated acknowledgement. Thatcher garnered his composure. "It shouldn't be far now. Let's go."

    As he intrepidly left the grotto, I started to feel a bit of regret for my actions. Particularly after his apology for something he wasn't responsible for. I remained in place as I thought about this. "Reika," I started. She was around halfway out, but stopped and whirled around when I called her name, still a little antsy. Abashed, I told her, "About what just happened...well, I guess I was being a little cruel. Sorry."

    "Apology accepted. Now let's get going." she steadfastly said, leaving immediately after. Not even apologizing herself. I lowered my head a little. From day one, I had no idea what to make of this girl. She's had little besides insults for me, and it was beginning to bother me. But we're friends...right?

    Shoulders slumped, I laggingly followed behind.

    ~~~~~~~~~~

    We continued our traverse to the top of the mountain without incident or further discussion. A few times, I opened my mouth to speak to Reika or Thatcher. Each time, I either couldn't think of anything to say, or my vocal chords defied my will. For six minutes, the only sound we made was that of our footsteps. For six minutes, all we saw were each other and the bland anatomy of a cavern. Only after we traveled up a winding tunnel and emerged into a straight corridor did either of those change.

    Remember when I was too tired to give a good description and described the entrance as just rocks and dirt? Well, that wasn't inaccurate. It is just a cave, after all. This uppermost level, however, something much different. There was an odd symmetry to this place. Besides the one wide passage that we currently stood in and the tunnel we had emerged from, there was a rupture opposing the latter. If it led somewhere in the past, it didn't now. Either end led to a massive dome hollow, each with its own deep chasm in the middle. The starry night sky filtered light in through narrow clefts at the the tops of these cupolas. There was still the basic composition of course, but these tunnels had dirt walls sparsely dotted with shiny stones mixed in with the granite. By comparison only making them only marginally less dull.

    "This is amazing," uttered Thatcher, eyes filled with marvel. "I've never seen anything like it!"

    "I have."

    "Me too." I added. Actually, I've seen even cooler. "But it doesn't make it any less spectacular."

    "Mmm-hmm."

    Like pilgrims in a foreign land, we wandered about with borderline naive curiosity. Thatcher aimlessly paced in the tunnels, caught by the indecisiveness that plagued Reika and myself for only a moment. I settled on examining the collapsed tunnel further, whereas she made a left, heading for the dome there.

    The way the ceiling led into the cave confirmed my theory about a possible collapse. The inconsistent ratio of material also gave it away. I'm not a speleologist as much as I'm not a geologist so I can't say for certain, but from the concave shape of the rupture and the way the dirt and rocks were resting, I'm guessing it collapsed at an angle rather than straight down. Interesting.

    "Wow..." Reika said as she stepped inside. She was fixated on something high above. I couldn't see it from where I was.

    "See what?" Thatcher asked, similarly mispositioned. Reika didn't hear him, and continued walking forward in fascination. We turned to each other, shrugged, and calmly followed to get a better look. As we got close to the mouth, sight of the upper part of the dome came into view. In addition to said clefts which the sky could be seen through, several sizable stalactites hung from their curvature.

    "It's beautiful. The way it sparkles." our friend whispered, getting as close as she could. It was a unique sight to be sure.

    "The stars?" Thatcher pondered as he gazed up at the fissure in the ceiling from a few meters away.

    "No, that thing." she mumbled, gesturing to it by reaching out in its direction. I saw where she was pointing, but couldn't see what she was pointing to. Was it something hard to see? Thatcher's silence told me he couldn't spot it either.

    Suddenly, Reika lost her balance. Arms flailing and on one foot, she twirled around right before she went over, allowing her to dart out her arms and barely grab a sturdy stone.

    "THATCHER!!! HELP!!!!" she screamed as she dangled? What...?

    Thatcher hustled forward and grabbed her hands, demonstrating unusual might under duress. He was straining a bit, but with each passing second, he was lifting his portly friend up inch by inch. I just stood there in a sort of unknown stupor, half-heartedly trudging after a few seconds. Reika seemed in good hands, but still...what?

    From the corner of my eye, I just caught Thatcher's head puzzlingly darting up. And then they both began to tumble over the side?!

    "Guys!" I simultaneously broke into a dash and attempt to retrieve Tangela. Before I could reach the clearing, I got knocked to the ground by something. I barely managed to get my arms out to break my fall, but the impact still stung.

    I looked up.

    A stalwart quadrupedal monster was crouched and snarling before me.
    Don't know what to put here.

  14. #14
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    Chapter 1-7: The Beast Attacks



    Shock.


    That's all I felt for what felt like a full minute.


    The reality of what just happened to my friends was only being repressed by the reality of what was before me. I had my doubts that this thing even existed...but here it was. The Beast of Abet. Despite partial visibility, this thing is still for the most part shadowed. What could be told was it stood tall on its four legs, peering down at me with beady red eyes.

    I clumsily rolled aside as the Beast lunged at me, baring its thick fangs. I tossed a Poké Ball at random, hoping for luck. It was Nidorina. Good.

    The Beast landed and stared back at me, attempting to pounce once again. Nidorina didn't like being ignored very much, intercepting it with a Tackle. The Beast's eyes burst into flames as it found its new target. It let out an ear-piercing shriek. Nidorina cringed at this, but stood up straighter than before when the cacophonous attack was finished.

    I began to give a hand signal, before remembering that Nidorina couldn't see my hands in this cave. Not to mention, there'd be little point against a wild. With a sigh over my impulses, I gave the command verbally, "Use Cut! And try to keep it busy!"

    A ripple of energy had begun to form between the frothing monster's horns. It unleashed the attack as a sparkling Signal Beam right where Nidorina used to be, she already having took off to slash it in the chest with her razor sharp claws. A good start, but I need more information! I need to know what this thing is capable of! I can do that. No one is here...no one will know...

    I pulled out a special device. It's...something like the more well-known Pokédexes, but it's not. It's about half the size of your average paperback book, and unfolds like one too. It's not something I use that often. It's not something I want too many people to know that I have. But no one is here anymore...it's just me, my Pokémon, and this monster. I pointed it at my target and pressed a button.

    A bright light flashed, the internal camera photographing its target. It took a few moments, around ten seconds to load. In those moments, I saw Nidorina and the Beast charging for one another simultaneously, but quickly turned my attention to the information when it appeared.

    The screen was projecting the image of an antelope. Fine-furred, it has horns like a rounded wishbone with a navy orb between them. Its ass-end was covered by a ball-shaped tail. It's colored an average shade of brown, with a number of creamy patches. And here's what it said.

    Stantler
    Normal Type

    Native to Johto, Northern Japan and the western seaboard of the mainland. It is a mammalian Pokémon who resembles a deer. In the climate of the Sinnoh region, thick fur protects them from cold winters. Because they do not shed, they tend to live in mountainous areas, taking shelter in caverns during heatwaves. By contrast, herds who roam regions such as Johto adapted thicker hides, due to increased presence of predators. Their hooves have a hardness closest to processed iron. Adults have a mass of 65-80kg in does, and upwards of 90kg in stags. Their neck muscles are very strong, but their only use is to support their thick cranium and heavy horns.

    This is a dangerous and unpredictable Pokémon whose behavioral patterns have yet to be adequately studied. Because of their powers and impulsive hostility, observing this Pokémon in its natural environment is a difficult task. One of the few consistencies established is their reaction to an invasion of their nest. The stags often attempt to ambush and gore the intruder on their horns. Due to their blunt shape, this is typically fruitless, but their goal is to protect the nest, even at the cost of their life or freedom.

    A Stantler is capable of using psychic, psionic, and other mental abilities due to its developed brain and the special composition of its horns. They've been known to use psychokinesis to allow themselves to levitate or fly in extreme instances. The most distinguishing power of these antelopes is the ability to create three-dimensional optical illusions. It is an ability often lost with captured Stantler unless it is specially trained. The nature of these illusions appears to depend on the individual Stantler.
    Well, that's just fucking lovely. Psychic powers. Shit! It's bad enough that Nidorina is a Poison type and vulnerable to certain types of Psychic attack, but I'm terrible at fighting the things, too. Perfect, just perfect. I think I see an opening there, though...this one should have a thin hide. Which means...

    "Nidorina, Poison Fang!"

    The rampaging Stantler was standing over my Pokémon, bucked back and ready to Stomp down on her. But hearing my word, Nidorina somersaulted beneath, grabbed onto its right hind leg, and bit down with all her might. The Beast bellowed demonically as the toxins were injected into its system, before swinging its leg back to throw Nidorina off. She landed on her feet and immediately charged back in. Again, the Stantler rose to use Stomp, aiming to flatten my Pokémon as she got near. Nidorina again dodged, but was unable to grab the other leg.

    "Double Kick, quick!"

    My fast reaction when the two Pokémon were left back to back paid off. Looking behind herself, Nidorina pushed up with her hind legs and snapped them back, quite literally kicking the Stantler's ass and sending it reeling. She pivoted with her front legs to face it. I figured out what she wanted to do pretty quickly when she lowered her head.

    "Let's do this! Nidorina, SKULL BASH!"

    Suddenly, the Beast shrieked with an otherworldly reverb. The world began to melt around us. No longer were we in the dimly lit upper level of a mountain cavern. Instead, we were in a burning fucking building. And the Beast was there for all the world to see. A stark contrast to what was shown to me, this Stantler's murky brown hair was standing on end like it was about to launch out a giant spiritual blast. Its ears were angled like knives, and horns seemed to have seen their share of damage over the years. Adding to the mythos, one of them appeared like an omega symbol. And of course, there's the red eyes. Those are still staring back, right about its dripping nose and frothing mouth. Whether this was part of the illusion or its true form was up in the air.

    Nidorina began to look around in a frenzy, not realizing what just happened. I began to open my mouth to warn her, but it was too late. Stantler's horns were glowing. Blue energy waves appeared from nowhere around Nidorina and collapsed in. That was painful, but not as painful as Stantler charging headfirst into it and catapulting it into the air. And just to add insult to injury, a swirling mass of dark matter appeared between its horns. The Beast screeched - worse than that Gyarados ever did - as it propelled the ball towards the falling Nidorina. An explosion rocked the area as it made contact. Nidorina is out like a light, and I'm screwed.

    The Beast let out a victory cry, and ominously turned back to me. It snickered, and began to approach menacingly - still limping a bit from the poison in its leg.

    "I'm not going to die here." I firmly told it. It responded to this stern proclamation with scorn. I sent out my next Pokémon and brought back Nidorina at the same time. Tangela appeared with a squeal, which degenerated into higher pitched whines when it saw where it seemingly was. To it, after all, I'd just sent out a grass type in a fiery blaze to battle against hellspawn.

    "Focus! The fire's not real!" I reassured, settling it down a bit. "Power Whip, let's go!"

    Out protruded a long thick vine, which Tangela swung for the fences with. It smacked the Beast once, twice, and a third time - right on the horns. Instantly, the illusion disappeared, bringing us back to reality. Right! Still, not in a good spot. Tangela's best move - Solarbeam - is out of the picture due to the energy source not being present. I'll have to get creative if I want to take this thing down.

    So we'll go with Tangela's other strong point. I gave the deterministic command, "Stun Spore!"

    Tangela shuddered, eyes closed and focusing to build up the necessary strength. It quickly achieved this, spewing out a plume of orange spores. The Beast deftly dodged the dust cloud and returned fire with a Signal Beam. Tangela was blasted off its feet, but made a quick recovery by grappling onto a stalactite with its vines and pulling itself right back. The Beast was only barely able to get out of the way of the ensuing Slam downwards. But that gave us an opening...

    "All right, Tangela! Sleep Powder!"

    The Beast turned around just in time for Tangela to give it a faceful of green dust. The results were instantaneous - it began hacking, struggling to remain upright. And then, it shook it off and resumed its threatening stance?

    ...

    You have GOT to be fucking kidding me.

    Tangela was just as surprised as I was. It was scarecly able to avoid the Beast as it summarily swung its horns repeatedly. It stumbled to its rear, and just before it was Stomped on, it managed to get a vine out and shove back its foe. Actually, you know what? Time to get the hell out.

    "We're getting out of here." I said to Tangela. It agreed with my assertation, bowing its form as if it were nodding. It's one thing to say we're going to. But how to escape? Let's see. There's a pissed-off Stantler blocking the path ahead. I want to go the other way...but I'm afraid of what I might find at the bottom of that ravine. So, opposite direction it is, angry antelope or no. But do I run down through the cave? Or rappel down at the opposite end?

    ...

    Well, if I run down the proper way, I could get pursued, or run into those bats again. Good lord, I can't believe I'm even considering this. I explained the plan to Tangela. I'd trained it to be able to do these kinds of stunts. I'd used it for vertical transport before. But never was the situation this dire or the stunts this extreme. No doubt, if it wasn't a bold and confident Pokémon, I could be in serious trouble.

    Tangela jumped backward to evade a Shadow Ball, fearlessly wrapped two vines around the twisted horns of the Stantler, and wrangled to dissipate a second shot. I picked up the mass of noodles, and held on tight.

    It's hard to describe what happened next. It happened so fast.

    First, we slingshotted over the Beast. Tangela's reel wasn't fast enough to pull me up all the way, so the psychotic creature ended up getting a face full of my shoes. The impact flipped it onto its back, and as soon as I was on my feet, I started moving them. If it wasn't mad before, that had to have set it off. I paused at the edge of the cliff, allowing Tangela to grapple a large stalactite lining the roof. As it was starting to pull us, I checked over my shoulder and saw the Beast firing yet another Shadow Ball our way. Shouting a word of warning caused Tangela to take a different trajectory, pivoting us around the spike. The dark mass of energy missed, detonating against the far cliff.

    CRACK!

    That was the sound of the stalactite breaking off under the mass and force being exerted upon it. This aided in evading yet another volley by the Beast, but now we were hurling out of control towards the unforgiving stone. I saw an out - a tiny entrance and ledge just to the left. I didn't know where this dark passage led, but anything seemed like a better option than straight forward or straight down. "Tangela!" I yelled, pointing to our salvation. Between the two vines already out and a third, it was able to shove off the wall before we crashed into it. A fourth it wrapped around my torso so I wouldn't lose my grip, as it forced us in the direction of the hole. It was just enough. The steep incline downward dementedly awaited.

    I landed on my feet, and my initial reaction was to lean back and try to slow my movement. I nearly fell over for trying. Managing to recover, I instead went with the flow. I ran. As fast as my legs would allow. Pure adrenaline was surging through every vein, every artery, and every capillary in my body. Tangela is around 9kg (or 20lbs), but it felt like nothing. This dimly lit passage twisted erratically, and several times I had to use my arms to aid in steering. I didn't want to try stopping. I didn't dare look back...and not just because what was in front of me was more important.

    After ten painstaking seconds that felt like an hour, I burst out of the tunnel...and nearly went over the side of a cliff!! I instinctively stood on my toes to halt my motion, but retaining my balance was another problem...! Two vines came flying out of Tangela and onto the ground. This added support was just enough to stop us from a fall into the forest below.


    Still, it didn't stop a fall outright. After all the walking and running, my legs finally gave up on me. They dropped out, and although my tailbone was right there, I couldn't even notice the physical pain over my mental distress. My legs dangled lifelessly over the edge as I leaned back. I was resting on solid rock, but given how badly I wanted to lie down, it was an air mattress with a fluffy pillow.


    But I remained alert. My head shot upwards when I noticed movement. I sat up and looked behind me. There was nothing back there...but I swore I saw something! And when I checked the opposite direction, there it was. A shadowed figure was lurking through the woods. I was only able to see the person because he...or she was clad in white. It paused for a second, then pressed on deeper into the bush. What was that person doing there...?

    After what just happened, I really wasn't in the state of mind to try to find out. I mean, it could very well just be another student who's roaming around in the dead of night, right? It's no big deal.

    With that in mind, and not wanting to hang around here any longer than I had to, I got Tangela to transport us down to ground level. It was more than happy to go back into its Poké Ball. With my Pokémon back home safe and sound, I hurriedly made my way back. The night was already a quiet one, but it was like it had gotten quieter after those events. As I walked through the forest, all those nocturnal Pokémon I heard had been hushed. The lights in the offices were no longer on. Even when I reached the dorms, the heightened silence was just eerie.

    And yet...all I could do was pray that Reika and Thatcher got out all right.

    ~~~~~~~~~~

    It was difficult to get out of bed the next morning.

    How do you even approach a day like this? You can hope for the best and prepare for the worst, sure. But saying that is one thing. Actually doing it is another.

    It wasn't that I was tired. It was just the weight of what happened was holding me down. The past two days, my schedule had been the same. Get up, get dressed, maybe have a snack, brush my teeth, comb my hair, go down three flights of stairs, and meet up with my friends outside the dorms. Today, they weren't waiting for me there.

    I really started to worry when I saw neither of them in Socials class. Nobody seemed to notice the two missing students, even when I chose to sit at a different table. I didn't want to bring it up to anyone, either. I just wasn't sure if it was a good idea or not. I didn't outwardly show my disdain, and maybe that could have made a difference. I just couldn't stop thinking about what had happened.

    With nothing else to do, I tried to take my mind off the events of the night before by getting a bit of training in during lunch. After getting some food from the cafeteria, I went to the field and practiced accuracy with Mareep for a while. It was something that it had been having a problem with, even before I got it. And it can't just wide-area Discharge all the time. I had it Thundershock a stone from various angles and distances. It worked...worked to help me take my mind off things, that is. The electric sheep made subtle progress with its targeting, too. The difference is, it was a temporary distraction for me, and permanent improvement for it.

    "Hey, you." came a serious voice from behind us around 10-15 minutes before the end of lunch. I span around instinctively to lock eyes with...two girls? Both around 5'5'', both blonde, and both with blue eyes. However, the one on my left had a sapphire-tinted iris and shoulder-length hair which, although there wasn't a strand out of place, one could count three to four different tones to it. The one on the right had aqua blue eyes, and her light, pure-colored hair was cut short. Her choice of dress was a bright orange tube-top and - judging by the fraying fabric - what were once jeans, but got cut into shorts that reached just above her knee-caps. And while I don't keep up with the latest Sinnoh fashion trends, I strongly suspect that her friend is making sure to follow them.

    "Um, can I help you ladies?" I responded. I was prepared for the likes of this ever since my popularity boom amongst my fellow first years. I hadn't heard definitive word of what years above think, so I stood ready for anything. They could've picked a better time for this, too.

    The two stared me over for a few moments. Both seemed a little hesitant, as if they didn't know how to respond to that. They nearly jumped out of their skin when Mareep finally took notice and took up a readied position by my side. I had to put my hand in front of it to calm it (and them) down. It was only then that the girl on the left asked me, "Hey, have you seen Reika around? You're always hanging around her, right?"

    Great, just what I needed. "No," I couldn't help exhibiting my emotions, my voice trailing off as I said my next two words, "I haven't."

    "Hold it there a minute!" It was my turn to almost jump out of my skin, when the second girl spoke up in a galvanized voice. She was leaning forward ponderously. "You two didn't have a fight, did you?"

    "What? No." I impulsively said in return. I explained the situation to them in a little more detail, or at least as far as I wanted to reveal, "Reika and I in the same class block, and she didn't come to Socials. I haven't seen her at all today."

    "Damn."

    "Well, thanks anyway."

    As the two girls were walking away, I realized something. Realized it way later than I should have, actually. Just before they went out of earshot, I spoke up. "Wait a sec." The two turned around inquisitively. "Why do you need to see her?"

    "Oh," said the girl on the left, as if she was cursing herself for that having slipped her mind, "I'm her roommate, Liane. Reika wasn't in the room when I woke up, and we haven't seen her all day." She slumped and sighed. "I'm just worried, that's all."

    That makes sense. I attempted to stay positive, and gave her some reassurance, "Well, I'm sure she'll turn up eventually." Even if it was just false hope. For both of us.

    "You're right." Liane sighed. Both girls seemed to realize that something may have been up, despite the innocuous tone of voice I took on, particularly the other girl. Her skimpy attire and blonde hair cut short practically...wait wait wait.

    "Wait, aren't you-"

    "Irene Faris, cousin of Celeste Faris? Yeah, that's me." That's not what I meant. And I have no idea who that is?

    "Well," mumbled a hasty Liane, "We'll go ask our friends, Carlie and Andrew. We'll tell you if we find anything."

    "See you around, Fritz Westmyn."

    And with that, the two left before I had a chance to say anything further to them. And a short time after that, the bell rang, signalling ten minutes before the afternoon class. No more time to practice, so I recalled Mareep and made my way there.

    ~~~~~~~~~~

    Tactics class didn't go much better. I couldn't tell you what the lesson was about. I was making a conscious effort to pay attention, but all of it went in one ear and out the other. That is, until the end, when it was time for the teacher to make his promised 'important announcement'.

    "I'm pleased to announce the 11th annual Tactics Mentorship Tournament." said Mr. Baiaz, although he didn't sound very pleased.

    "Here's how this would ordinarily work. Everyone who is on their third year of this course would choose a student on their first year. They would have a month's time to give tutelage, after which a knockout-style tournament.would be held." he explained. His tone turned unpolished once he continued, "However, due to the temporary imbalance brought on by our new principal, it'll be a little different. Instead, each tutor will have not one, but two students under their wing. And the tournament will be held in a Multi Battle format."

    A Multi Battle. That means two trainers battling two other trainers, each using one a Pokémon at a time. Fundamentally, they're a little different from a standard Double Battle for various different reasons. Mr. Baiaz didn't mention how big the battles would be. A trainer using two apiece is most common.

    "Mentors will be expected to train their choices to the best of their abilities. They must do whatever they can to prepare them for the tournament. And likewise, those who are being mentored will be expected to listen to their tutors, and do whatever they are asked. Each party is going to be graded based on their individual performances. So be sure you try your best, no matter what. That's all for today."

    Shortly after that proclamation of end of class, before I had gotten the chance to gather my thoughts, before half the class had even left the room, I was greeted by a familiar insult: "Hey! Shithead!"

    I briefly raised my head to acknowledge Edgar, Aporon, and the other two, but lowered it again.

    "HEY!!"

    "Piss off."

    "So, Westmyn." said Aporon, ignoring my request. "We heard from Lawrence here that he saw you going off to the mountain cavern last night. You're not allowed to go up there, you know."

    I thought fast. "What's it to you?"

    Edgar looked back at them. "He's got a point." he casually quipped.

    Realization of what was explained to me only set in after they said that. I snapped upright. "Wait, why is not allowed? Is it because of that Beast I ran into?"

    They collectively gasped. Aporon included. So my instincts were right. I thought something was way off, which is why I didn't bring it up to anyone. This confirms it.

    "You? You saw the Beast?" asked the prep.

    "Yeah. I went there," I started, before thinking better of my next words, "To check out the place. I found my way to the upper level, where it suddenly attacked me. I battled it with my Nidorina for a bit, but it used an illusion to startle and defeat it." I sighed, still not liking how that matchup had concluded. "Then I used Tangela, and when it resisted Sleep Powder, I figured it was too dangerous. So I decided to run for it. I barely made it out alive."

    The four were quiet for a moment. It wasn't clear if they weren't sure how to respond to it, if they thought I was lying, or if they were impressed in some way. To my total surprise, it was the last of those. Aporon grinned approvingly. "Heh. I knew you were something special when I saw you. I knew you had something in you to make you a cut above the rest." Only the prep seemed to pick up on his passing jab towards them. He didn't seem offended, but opened his mouth to speak. Aporon continued before he could get a word out, "Now personally, I think you could've be a little less rash. I wouldn't take that sort of chance. But I like it!"

    The well-dressed prep asked him when he paused, "Cronus. Are you thinking of doing what I think you are doing?"

    "I am." he confirmed with a grin. "This settles it. Fritz Westmyn, I choose you. As one of my two representatives in the tournament!"

    "Whoa, whoa, whoa. No. NO!" I made no attempt to hide my contempt. "I am not going to battle for you, Aporon."

    "Why not?" he asked, feigning mental injury. "I'm a former winner, you know. You could learn a lot from me, like about the four Ps."

    I had no idea what he was yapping on about, but I didn't care. I enunciated, "First of all, I don't like you. Second, I don't want to. I don't care if you're the crown jewel of the University. I am not going to be mentored by you."

    "Good thing you got no choice, then!" he boasted. "Being the crown jewel of the University has benefits!" He laughed, and so did his friends.

    "Fffffffffff...fine." I grumbled. "What do I have to do?" I instantly regretted asking that question when the same wicked grin synchronizingly spread across all of their faces. Aporon stroked his goatee in deep thought. He cunningly nodded. The message was clear. Whatever he was planning, it can't be good news.

    ~~~~~~~~~~

    "You can't be serious." We had gone outside, and I found myself in front of the school in the middle of the Square. I could barely see Edgar and Lawrence stationed in the distance on the left and right side respectively. Aporon and the other guy were standing with me, but paid my distaste little heed.

    "Make no mistake, Fritz," said the prep, as he stood with his hands on his hips, "When it comes to training, Cronus is always serious."

    "Can you explain again what you want me to do?" I rhetorically asked, as I heavily rubbed my forehead. My real point in doing so was to see if they could say it to me twice in a row with a straight face.

    Aporon repeated what he told me, right down to the way he said each word, "You're going to send out your Nidorina. And then you're going to run laps around the main building with it. We'll be watching you to make sure you actually do it, too." Not even a humorless smile. Either Aporon really was serious about this, or he was really good at controlling his laughter. Probably a mixture of both.

    "I get how running laps around the school could like, make Nidorina faster or increase its sufferance." I argued as I brought her out. She sniffed in the direction of the two men, and growled. "But why are you making me run too?"

    "It'll strengthen the bond between you two." Those were his exact words, but the way he said it, it felt more like flimsy justification that legitimate belief. Again, not even a humorless smile.

    "And this is how you train your Pokémon?" I sternly pressed.

    "Of course it is." he bragged without a shred of irony. "Now get to it. And remember, 'you will be expected to listen to your tutor.' So don't try to get out of it."

    I groaned. This so-called 'training' was just barely constitutional. It was just enough to be rationalized, while remaining highly unsensible. That was a fact not lost on Nidorina either, as when she heard the plan, she straight-up hissed at Aporon and the prep. This is the run. I stretched a little to warm myself up. Mostly because I knew a guy who usually did that. I was at least wearing shorts, although I could've used a better shirt than my green and white one. Without any time to mull that over (and not that they would've let me change, anyway), I was sent off.

    Edgar's choice of dress was identical to two days ago, as was his attitude. "I fucking told you there'd be consequences, shithead." he menacingly growled as Nidorina and I drew near. He made a throat slitting motion with his right thumb as we passed him by. As I rounded the corner to the bleachers/battlefields, a few students stopped what they were doing (even those in-battle!) to gawk. There was a range of emotions being expressed in their faces, but all seemed to have a peculiar solace within their visage.

    "Hee hee. Aporon's making you run." giggled Lawrence when I rounded the next corner. He was on the paved path leading to the offices, trying to bask in the shade created by the little trees. His position was suboptimal; the reflection of the sun (hovering just over the school) coming off his glasses made me shield my eyes. He stood ignorant to this, not at all bothered by it. Lawrence was bending over uncontrollably as he chortled, "Run, rabbit, run! Hee hee hee!"

    By the time we had made one lap, only the prep was standing back at the starting point. I pondered how he wasn't hot in that suit of his. Returning my look, he haughtily exhaled. I barely heard his words, "There is nothing further to discuss," when I ran by him. Not a marathon sprinter, but so far, so good.

    "Faster!" Edgar screamed when I made my second pass, apparently unfamiliar with the concept of pacing yourself. "You're gonna pay out the ass for what you did." In response to this threat, Nidorina shot him a deathglare as I shot him a middle finger. He cursed at me and shook his fist, but failed to follow through on his words.

    As I figured, Aporon had taken up a position near the outdoor battlegrounds. He just watched patiently as I went by, his expression remaining calm and stoic even when I glared at him. There was less interest in me, but outliers stationed as far as the group on the bleachers and even a guy in a white shirt and pants watching from the forest kept interest.

    Um, hold on, what?

    I slowed my pace. It didn't look like the snoop was looking at me specifically, but shortly after, the figure dove back behind the trees.

    "Why'd you stop?" Aporon had hustled up beside me. He was more inquisitive than he was bothered by my action. Not my intents, but I welcomed this opportunity for a break.

    "I thought I saw someone sneaking around the forest." I plainly stated, continuing to look where the figure once stood. I saw no further sight of him, and neither did Aporon.

    "It's probably just some idiot." he scoffed after a few seconds. "Keep going."

    I sighed and started my run up once more. It was the explanation that makes the most sense. I'd seen a guy who was clad in white the first day here. He could be a creep who likes to skulk around in the woods, sure. But still.
    Don't know what to put here.

  15. #15
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    Default Re: The Story of Fritz Westmyn: The Turning World

    Okay, so I've got to reply to two chapters since I neglected to last time. Chapter 6... Let's see. Smacking Reika silly has been moved up on my list of life goals. Thatcher is shaping up to be a wonderful character. He just needs a confidence boost and then I think he'd be really good. The battle scene made me want to physically hurt something so I didn't try to kill the computer/Reika. And God knows, I would have done lost it on this little girl. Nobody gonna talk to me like that. Mmmhm. *Z formation finger snap* I wonder what the creature is...

    Chapter 7... And that was a surprise. A Stantler. I'm... wow. And small graces. Reika wasn't present so, she remains at a 7 on my annoyance scale. I'm impressed with Tangela. Of course, when we spoke about Grass types, its kinda hard not to be. /mysterious allusion. Mmm, at the moment I want to hurt the three stooges more than Reika, but that'll probably change whenever she comes back in. Also, I'm liking the two new character chicks. And mysterious figure in white. I wonder...

    Finally... I can't wait to see the next chapter especially with the debut of... You-Know-Who.
    "Be careful what you wish for, because you just might get it."
    -- Narrator, Pokemon: Jirachi Wish Maker
    "You can't change the world without getting your hands dirty."
    -- Lelouch Lamperouge, Code Geass: Lelouch of the Rebellion
    "Do I have a stamp on my forehead that says, 'The National Spokesperson for the Plight of Black People'? How the hell should I know the black perspective on The Color Purple? That's it, if I don't change classes, I'm gonna hurt this fool. Teachers treat me like I'm some kind of Rosetta stone for African-Americans. What? Black people learn how to read, and we all miraculously come to the same conclusion?"
    -- Victoria, Freedom Writers
    "N's heart is pure and innocent. But there is nothing more beautiful and terrifying than innocence."
    -- Concordia, Pokémon Black/White 2

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