It took half a second to change my life forever. I tried to help someone and this is the thanks
I get for it. True, life now has its ups and downs, but it could have all been avoided if I had just walked away. But I had
to be a Good Samaritan and it completely screwed my life.
In the meantime, I should probably tell you what I'm complaining about. It all started when I went
out exploring one day...
In the woods near my home, I was planning to go hiking one fine summer's day. There
is a pretty nice trail that leads down to the Mississippi River that I constantly
go on. I had gone on this trail dozens of times before, but today was different -- I just didn't know it yet.
While walking down the path, I was aware that the birds were unusually quiet today. I normally
hear various birds' songs while on the path. However, there was an unusual silence that started to scare me a little. Nevertheless,
I kept walking. I wasn't about to let the absence of some birds ruin my day.
As I neared the Mississippi River, the smell of smoke reached my nostrils. That was odd. There wasn't a house around here for miles.
It smelled like something a bonfire was burning somewhere. I knew I should have gone back but my curiosity was getting the
better of me. I pressed on.
Further down the path, I reached a clearing that I had been to many times before. This time, a small campfire had been erected in the middle of the clearing and a large, odd creature was sitting
on a log nearby.
If I had to classify this odd creature, I would call it a "chicken", but it looked anything but.
Instead of feathers, it seemed to be covered in fine red fur. It had its back to me but I could see that it had a "ponytail"
of white-gray "hair" that split in two downward directions from the back of its head. I saw that most of its body was colored
a burning-red except for a spiky yellow pattern from just below its knees down to its taloned feet. A short red tail extended
from its back side. From what I could see from one of its arms on the log was that the creature had muscular red arms that
changed to gray "bird's feet" near its wrists and it had three sharp "talons" for its hands.
I couldn't get a decent look without getting closer to it, so against my better judgment, I inched
closer and closer to it... until it heard me.
The creature moved like greased lightning and it was soon on its feet facing me. What looked like
miniature flames had ignited on its wrists. Before I knew what hit me, it had tackled me, digging its talons into my chest
and I knew was looking into the face of a warrior.
It had a pair of fierce yellow-and-blue eyes above a hooked, red beak. A V-shaped flash grew from
above its eyes almost like a pair of antennae.
"Who are you, human?" it growled at me in a deep voice. "Why were you spying on me?"
"I... I... I'm Alex Schaefer! And I wasn’t spying
on you! I don't even know who you -- gack!"
The creature had put one of his talon-like hands around my throat and stopped me cold.
"I don't believe you! You're from that MetaboAnthro company, aren't you?!"
I tried to speak through being strangled but it was proving to be difficult.
"I... don't know... *gack*... what you're... *gulp*… talking about!"
"Don't lie to me, human!" challenged the creature. "I've seen how your kind works; you send someone
in plain clothes to search for escaped specimens from your lab and recapture them with their hidden weapons. You're all the
If I didn't say something soon, this creature was going to suffocate me to death.
"I'm from... ClearLake... *gasp*... and I just... *gulp*… went out... for a walk!"
The creature didn't press any harder on my throat, but he didn't let up either. It stared me down
with its fierce yellow-and-blue eyes. It seemed to be eyeing me closely. It got so close to my face that I could feel its
hot, smoky breath. I wasn't sure how much longer I could be deprived of air. I was nearly petrified of dying at the hands
of this strange, brutal creature.
Finally, it seemed to trust me enough to release me and get up off of me. I sat up gasping for
breath and the creature extended a clawed hand to help me to my feet.
"My apologies, Alex." Its voice was normally deep and menacing, but its mood had lightened up.
"I mistook you for those scientists from MetaboAnthro."
"No... *ahem*... problem," I said, clearing my throat. "Why did you think that I was from this
I could hear a low growl in the creature's throat.
"I was captured by MetaboAnthro's science lab while they were experimenting with animals to create
hybrids. They were using me to infect people like you and turn them into hybrids."
"Why would they do such a thing?" I asked, outraged.
"Hybrids like me are born naturally into regular human parents, but MetaboAnthro is using science
to artificially create more powerful ones in order to take over the world. If I know them, they'll be going public soon."
"Is there any way to stop them?"
But the creature shook its head. "We can't do anything right now, but we've been preparing for
a full-on attack in time."
"You keep saying "we". Who's "we"?"
"Johiko's School for the Gifted is a haven for hybrids like me." He suddenly froze and became stone-still.
"I've told you too much already. I have to go." He turned around made to run off, but I grabbed his right talon and held him
in place. "Let go of me, Alex. I don't want to hurt you."
Common Sense told me to let go, but I wanted to learn more about this "school for the gifted".
"Wait! What if MetaboAnthro finds you?"
"I'll be fine. Now let me go!"
"I don't want anything to happen to you. Let me come with you!"
"I said "NO!!!""
With a sweep of his arm and a rake of his talons, the creature sent me flying towards the other
end of the clearing, a long trio of scratches appearing on my chest. I hit the ground hard and clutched my chest with my tattered
and bloody shirt.
When I looked up, the hybrid had vanished. He seemed to have leapt clean out of the clearing. Fresh
talon marks were embedded in the spot where he had leaped from.
Confused and sporting fresh scratch marks, I decided to head back home and get some proper bandages
on my wounds. What had that been all about? I just wanted to talk with the hybrid
and it had just attacked me! I guess that's what you get for trying to spark a conversation. I didn't even get his name!
I was feeling a little feverish when I got home. I felt a little woozy and I was burning up from
an unknown fever. Had that hybrid been infected with rabies or something? Was I slowly getting sick from an unknown disease?
Wait a minute... How could that be? That hybrid had said that he had been born into regular human
parents like everyone else. The only difference was HOW they had been born. But why was I catching a fever after my encounter
with that hybrid? Were they infected with something or did this "MetaboAnthro" do something to him to contribute to this?
Regardless, I needed to get some rest. My body temperature was skyrocketing. What's more, the area
around my scratches was itching like mad. I was so hot that I had to sleep in my underwear with the air-conditioning on high
just to stay even slightly cool!
When I woke up the next day, the heat inside my body had cooled to a point that I could handle
it. However, the itching seemed to have spread around my torso. It was so bad that I had to check the mirror in my bathroom
to see the damage clearly.
"WHAT THE #$%&?!?!" I screamed out loud. "Is that what I think it is?!"
The scratches the hybrid had given me had healed up without so much as a scar, but that's not what
I was screaming about. My torso was covered with a variety of white-gray, yellow and red fur. It was unlike any fur that I
had ever seen before -- it was short, smooth and sleek -- like a cross between fuzz and fur. If my eyes weren't lying I was
turning into an animal!
Wait a second... I knew exactly who did this to me!
It was that hybrid that I had run into in the woods! I tried to stay calm as I watched the sleek, red fur progress down my
legs like a miniature wave, turning yellow just below my knees.
Just then, I felt my internal body parts give way and change. I hit the floor as most of my bones
started to break and snap audibly. Along with that, my organs were also changing and squishing around inside me. I couldn't
move from the extreme pain that I was in.
All the while, the fur on my body extended to my arms and head where my hands reformed to mimic
the hybrid's scaled talons. Also, I grew a similar plume of dirty-white hair that split in two different directions.
I was in so much pain that I passed out from the sheer intensity of it.
"Ohh... what... happened?" I put a clawed hand to my temple and tried to think straight after regaining
consciousness. "I feel like I had my head in a monkey wrench. Huh?"
My voice was significantly lower and deeper. I instinctively put my hand to my throat. It was sleek
and furry just like the rest of my body. I then held my hands to my face and felt a short, curved beak. Getting up, I dreaded
the outcome of my appearance when I looked in the mirror.
The shock of seeing myself changed in the mirror was so great that I didn't know what to do. I
just stood there, running my claws down my face and torso. I had changed into a form similar, if not identical to the hybrid
that I had seen in the woods!
As I tried to comprehend what had happened to me, something tickled the inside of my throat, causing
me to cough. In the process, several spurts of flame escaped my beak and ignited several things on my counter such as my toothpaste
and a spare roll of toilet paper.
"Oh crap!" I cursed, fumbling with the items to put them out. I quickly dumped the items in my
shower stall and turned on the water, extinguishing them almost instantly. "Let's... not do that again."
Once I had gotten over the shock of my transformed form, I decided to look at the positives of
this new form. My arms were well-toned and muscular. I had a feeling that if that hybrid could throw me halfway across a forest
clearing with one arm, who knows what I could do with both of them?
I also seemed to weigh much less than I normally did. I was just shy of 270 pounds before, but
now I guessed that I couldn't have been much higher than 100. This was a good thing; if that hybrid could jump as high as
I thought he did, I should be able to mimic that easily. The fire breathing ability was also a bonus of being a hybrid. I
might start to enjoy this after all!
Just then, the doorbell rang. Oh crud. I couldn't let anyone see me like this! If word got out
that I had turned into a fire-breathing hybrid, it would be the end of me!
However, I decided to see who it was. Grabbing a blanket off of my bed and wrapping myself up in
it, I went to answer the door.
It was my own mother! She couldn't see me like this! But something told me that I could probably trust her with this. After all, it was my mom.
"Alex?" she asked me, spotting me through the window. "Are you there?"
"Yes," I grunted, trying to make my deep voice sound normal. "Come on in."
She did, but she immediately spotted my unusual behavior.
"Alex, are you alright? Your voice sounds funny."
"Mom... I need to tell you something. But you have to promise not to scream and run away. Please?"
She seemed taken aback when I asked her. "I would never do anything of the sort to my own son.
"Okay..." I took a deep breath. "Here goes!"
I pulled the blanket off of me and showed her my true form. She nearly fainted when she saw me.
Mom couldn't decide what was more frightening -- my fierce, bird-like face, my powerful, clawed hands or my fiery-red fur.
Instead, she approached me and put her hand up to my face.
"Alex... What have you done with yourself?"
I was slightly confused. "How do you know it's me?"
Mom took my hand and looked me square in the eyes. I had always been taller than her, but now I
was a few inches past my former height, making her appear much smaller than before.
"Your eyes have changed... but I can still see you in there. I also know that you would never attack
anyone no matter how strong you are. Oh, Alex!" She grabbed me in a hug and started crying. "I feel so helpless! I swore that
I would protect you... and then this happened!"
I stroked Mom's head just like she did when I was upset. "It's not your fault. I told you that
I was old enough to handle the world, and now I'm dealing with the consequences."
Mom cried into my chest for a while. She kept blaming herself for this, but I kept telling her
that it was my fault for not being careful enough. When she finally admitted that she could do nothing about it, she pulled
herself from my chest and looked up at me.
"You're so warm. Did you want to tell me what happened?"
I sat down on my couch and she did the same. I then began to tell her my entire encounter with
I had barely finished when the doorbell rang again. Mom told me to stay put and went to answer
A well-built man in a navy-blue suit and pants was at the door. He had unusual deep-blue eyes and
had a full head of untidy... I wanted to say "gray", but his hair had more of a "silver" color to it. Around his neck was
a silver pendant with a shattered star symbol. In the man's right hand was a silver metal briefcase.
"Is this the residence of Alex Schaefer?" He had a firm yet kind voice.
"Yes it is," said Mom, standing so that the man couldn't see me. "Who are you?"
"My name is Professor Darck. I'm the Headmaster of Johiko's School for the Gifted. May I come in?"
Mom quickly looked at me and I shrugged. I hadn't signed up for a school under any such name. I
quickly got up and headed to my room. I didn't know who this guy was, but I wasn't going to let him see me like this.
While I was gone, Professor Darck sat down in my seat. He shook my mom's hand and got right down
to business. I listened through the door at their conversation. One positive factor of being a hybrid was the enhanced senses.
You couldn't see my ears, but my hearing was exceptional.
"I don't remember signing Alex up for any school," said Mom. It sounded like she was rifling through
some papers that Professor Darck had given her.
"You didn't," he replied. "I have a way to find people with... special needs. You could say that
a little birdie told me."
Both of us were suddenly interested. "Are you spying on him?"
I guess he shook his head. "No, ma'am. I have other informants that... let's say... keep an eye
out for people of his... "condition" and report to me."
"Is he really... that obvious?" I groaned. Mom was always
stating the obvious.
"You could say that. I am also quite used to people like him. You could say..." He broke off. I
couldn't hear what he said, but Mom sounded surprised.
"You are?! But you don't look like...!" She broke off as well.
They weren't spilling it. I had a strange feeling that Professor Darck knew that I was eavesdropping...
but that didn't explain how Mom knew "what he was".
The professor then addressed Mom so that I could hear them. "If it's all right with you, I'd like
to meet Mr. Schaefer personally."
"I'm sure he'd like to meet you. I'll go get him."
I quickly ran back to my bed and grabbed a book to make it look like I was waiting for them to
Mom opened the door slightly and spoke to me. "Alex... would you like to come out and meet Professor
"Uh... sure," I growled deeply.
Just then, my beak tickled. I fought to hold it back but was unsuccessful. I sneezed loudly and
a jet of flame flew from my maw and scorched the wall to my left. Thankfully, nothing caught fire.
Mom looked at me with concern. I chuckled and sniffed. "Sorry, I forgot to tell you about the fire-breathing."
"As long as you don't burn the house down, I guess it's a part of you now."
When I reached the living room, I saw that Professor Darck was waiting patiently for me. I approached
the room cautiously. Revealing to another person that I was a hybrid was a very delicate process. However, he didn't seem
surprised when he saw me for the first time.
"Just as I thought."
"Excuse me?" I asked, clenching and unclenching my claws.
"You've had a run-in with one of our current students, Jeffery "Blaziken" Symon, haven't you?"
I blinked. "You lost me. I was scratched by a hybrid yesterday."
"Exactly," said Professor Darck simply. "You look exactly like him."
"Are you saying that these... "hybrids" are infecting people on purpose?" Mom looked genuinely
He shook his head. "That was just an unfortunate accident.
I doubt Jeffery knew what he was doing at the time. I can guarantee that he will be unable to repeat his mistake again."
"You still haven't explained this "school" of yours in full," I said, sitting on the couch.
"I didn't? Oh, I guess I should then."
He took out a brochure from his briefcase and gave it to me. I had a little trouble handling it
with only three claws, but I would get used to them eventually. The brochure showed a picture of a beautiful stone building
that stood on the edge of an expansive garden. It seemed like it was all well and good. However, I didn't trust papers.
"Johiko's School for the Gifted is a special haven for people like you," explained Professor Darck
as if he was reading my thoughts. "We specialize in the field of... hybrid learning and technology."
These last few words immediately caught my attention.
"Hybrids? This school is a place for freaks... like me?" I said, catching myself.
""Freaks"," he said, emphasizing the word. "Is more of an understatement.”Hybrids", like
yourself, are people who possess unique and special abilities. They are completely capable of living normally with others.
Other people, however, like to think of us as "outcasts"."
"And he'll find people like him at this school?" asked Mom curiously.
"Of course! Even "I" possess special hybrid abilities, as does all our staff."
"No way!" I blurted out. "You don't look anything like
"Alex!" hissed Mom.
"It's okay," he reassured her. "I can sense that he needs proof to be believed. Allow me..."
Professor Darck got to his feet and closed his eyes. The both of us watched in disbelief as he
started glowing a bright white. The light became so bright that the both of us flinched. When we looked back at him, we saw
that he had changed form!
His skin had become smooth and dull-gray. He was wearing an orange shirt and blue shorts and his
hair had turned a dark brown color, but that's not what alarmed us. He had two dog-like hind feet that appeared digitigrade
and his face was muzzle-like and included two gray flashes over his navy-blue eyes... almost like a mask. Ten rectangular
red "plates" grew from his back and poked through holes cut in his shirt. To top it all off, Professor Darck had a long, flexible,
He also looked considerably younger than he had appeared to be. He reminded me of a teenage boy
instead of a full-grown man. Apparently, he was a shape-shifter.
"This is my real form," said Professor Darck. He had a much younger and freestyle voice now. "This
is how I was born. I'm not ashamed to show it off and neither should you."
"Wow." That was all I could say. Mom was speechless.
Suddenly, I had a question. "If you can change forms, are you psychic as well?"
Professor Darck smiled. You didn't have to read my mind
to figure that out.
I shook my head. I had just heard his voice in my head!
"Did you just...?"
Yep. I'm the best Telepath in the whole world.
"And I'm extending an invitation for you to come to my school and be with people just like you.
What do you say?" He said this vocally.
I considered this. I had the chance to be with people who were like me. What's more, I could finally
go back to school and graduate. It was either that or live the rest of my life among "normal" people with the "freak" status
stamped on my head.
"All right! I'll go!"
"That's great!" said Professor Darck. "However, you seem to have one more question, Mrs. Schaefer?"
Mom flinched when he addressed her suddenly. "Yes, uh... How much is this going to cost? We haven't
really saved up for anything like this."
The professor shook his head. "That won't be a problem. The school is all-expense paid by very
generous donors. We've got it taken care of."
Free school?! This just gets better and better!
"Can I go, Mom? Please?!" Somehow, it looked very awkward to see a fierce giant like me begging
my human of a mother to go to school.
"I... don't see why not. Sure!"
Professor Darck had made an appointment for a private bus to pick me up and escort me to school
the next day. Since I couldn't go out in public, I spent the next 24 hours packing my things while Mom wrote several e-mails
to my family and friends telling them where I was going. She left out the parts where I had turned into a fire-breathing hybrid
and that I was going to a hybrid school. She wanted to respect my privacy and tell them when the time came.
Since I had a brand-new fur coat to keep me warm, Professor Darck had said that clothes were completely
optional. I appreciated this new freedom but decided to wear them anyway until I heard otherwise. Nevertheless, I packed some
of my biggest clothes in my suitcase along with my DVD/CD/MP3 Player (What? They make them like that.), camera and drawing
materials. I wanted to draw some of the hybrids that I was going to meet and get some decent pictures.
The next day at on the nose, the doorbell rang and I had my things ready to go. I gave my mom one last hug (while
trying not to crush her to death) and left the house for what I felt would be the last time.
The bus was about as big as one of those small community school buses and had the words, "Johiko's
School for the Gifted" stamped on the side.
When I got on, I blinked at the bus driver. She looked almost like a cat and had a coat of unusual
purple fur around her head and shoulders. The rest of her was a sleek, smooth, yellow color. Her paws actually resembled cat
paws with black pads on her palms. I blinked again.
"Hello there," she said sweetly. "I'm Karen "Delcatty" Bryron. What's your name?"
I had heard another of those "hybrid names" that Professor Darck had told me about. Since I was
now one of them and I didn't have my own hybrid name, I decided to make one up. Since I was "Blaziken's" twin and "Blaziken"
was taken, I settled with...
"Alex "Blaze" Schaefer," I said, taking a bow.
""Blaze", huh?" Delcatty giggled and closed the door. "Alright, "Blaze". Take your seat."
I left the snickering Delcatty to herself and chose a seat. The only other person on the bus was
a green-furred woman wearing a blue tank top and similar-colored jeans. She had a short, yellow-tipped tail and similar yellow
markings running down her back and on her face and "ears." The "ears looked like a cross between a rabbit and a fox while
her head had a short muzzle and were both pierced with a single hoop earring on each one. A pointed extension reached backwards
from her skull -- it almost looked like a horn. The woman had four fingers on each hand and her feet were dog-like -- almost
like Professor Darck's. In her hand was a small, green, drawstring bag.
Placing my suitcase under the seat, I took one across from the woman. She seemed to be examining
me as the bus started rolling. She looked interestingly at my fierce, beak-like face and spoke.
"Are you... going to school with them?" She had a kind and delicate voice.
"Uh... yeah." I never learned how to talk to a girl before.
"My name's Ashley, but everyone calls me "Electra"." She reached out with one of her small hands.
"Alex... but I call myself "Blaze"."
"So I see," said Electra, looking up at the driver. She had very beautiful sky-blue eyes. "So...
what's your power?"
"Oh, come on! Every hybrid's got one. Watch this."
Electra pointed up at the radio and her eyes began glowing bright green. I heard the radio stations
changing as a tiny spark jumped between her fingers. Delcatty looked confused as she started fidgeting with the dials. When
she looked back, Electra dropped her hand and looked innocent.
"Please don't do that," she said, sighing and returning her attention to the road.
Electra smiled and looked back at me. "I can mess with just about anything electrical. I used to
get discounts at the mall because I would mess with the prices in the cash registers."
"Did you ever get caught?" I wondered.
"Nope. All I got was a bunch of funny looks."
"I suppose that they're not used to seeing a hybrid like yourself walking around, are they?"
"No." She and I were starting to like each other. "What about your
"Oh! Hold on a second."
I rolled down a window so that I didn't destroy the bus. Taking a deep breath, I took aim at a
common mailbox. Just for fun, I let a jet of flame fly from my beak and it ignited the mailbox. Fortunately, there were no
people around and Delcatty didn't see it.
"Nice!" said Electra, clapping. "You seem to have some unique skills. Tell me more about yourself."
It was over well over six hours until we reached the school, but the time seemed to fly by. Electra
and I talked about how we had become hybrids. She had been born one while I had been infected by Blaziken in a freak accident.
We also talked about what the school was going to be like. It was rumored that all the students and staff were hybrids of
all shapes and sorts.
We were so immersed in conversation that we didn't notice another hybrid had gotten on the bus
until it spoke up.
She was clearly female as well ("I'm surrounded by women!" I thought with a sigh.) but it was hard
to tell that she was from her stern face. Her torso and face was white, but her arms, back, the fronts of her legs and the
top of her face was a clear sapphire-blue. She wore a white tank top attached to a pink sash around her neck with pink lace
underneath it and yellow bands around her waist. An oddly-shaped charm covered her... ahem...
flat white chest. Two yellow bands were tied around her upper arms whose purpose
was unclear to me.
She wore a pair of blue shorts complete with a leather belt, blue ribbons and a strange blue "cape"
that flowed behind her. Blue and white patterns made up the skin on her legs just above a pair of skintight blue leather boots.
Two long, white ribbons flowed mysteriously around her on their own accord.
This hybrid's head was the most peculiar one that I had ever seen before. Beneath two piercing-red
eyes was a short nose-like muzzle. Her hair was waist-length and was colored... Huh. Purple. Atop her head was the most bizarre
headpiece that I ever saw. It looked like a crystal-shaped diamond with a hollow center and two shorter horns extending from
each side of it.
The female hybrid took a seat in front of me and placed her suitcase on her seat. She then turned
to us and tried to join in our conversation.
"Hi, I'm Yuna "Suicuna" Kirasagi." She seemed slightly nervous.
Electra and I stopped talking and introduced ourselves. Suicuna, it turns out, had been turned
into a hybrid by a twisted company called "MetaboAnthro" in order to create super-hybrids. Somehow, she had escaped and was
in hiding until Professor Dark found her and invited her to his school. She was understandably nervous and was rather reluctant
to show us her power.
Suicuna produced a water bottle and was able to manipulate the water into complex patterns.
"I can only manipulate water," she said in disappointment. "I can't create it. Also..."
She produced a second power: wind control. She managed to enhance the force of the air-conditioning
on the bus to a gust stronger than traveling down the highway with the windows down.
"Okay! So you're good!" Electra and I shouted over the gust.
Suicuna blushed and we all talked about our stories until we reached the school.
"Well, this isn't so bad," said Electra, looking up at the school. "The brochure certainly wasn't
The exterior of the school was an exact carbon copy of the one on the brochure. It had well-manicured
lawns, was built out of white sandstone. We could see various hybrids walking around the grounds going about their business.
"I was expecting something a little more..." Suicuna shrugged. "Low grade. This certainly exceeds
"Wait'll you see the inside," said a voice that I immediately recognized.
Jeffery "Blaziken" Symon was standing in front of the front doors, grinning as well as his facial
features would allow. I noticed that his clawed hands were bandaged up heavily.
"Hi, Blaziken!" I said, waving at him.
Blaziken tilted his head. "I take it that Johiko told you my name? Because I sure didn't."
"Johiko?" said Electra, Suicuna and me at the same time. We didn't have any idea who he was talking
"Oh. You probably know him as "Professor Darck"."
"Come on in! I'll give you all a tour."
"What should we do with our things?" wondered Electra.
"Don't worry about that." Blaziken let out a sharp whistle and another hybrid seemed to appear
from out of nowhere behind us. It caught all three of us off guard.
The hybrid had a coat of puffy white fur and a black face with red eyes. He had a curved black
"horn" sticking out of the right side of his head and a black "third eye" on his forehead. The hybrid's hands had four fingers
with short, stubby, black claws on each of them and three of them on his feet. A small, pointed black, tail grew from his
"Absol, will you take these students' things to their rooms?" asked Blaziken, motioning to our
"Yes, sir," said the hybrid. He picked up Electra's and Suicuna's suitcases in his arms, hooked
mine around the horn on his head and carried them off into the building.
"Strong guy," said Suicuna, impressed.
"You have no idea what Absol is capable of," said Blaziken, shaking his head. "Now, how about that
The inside of the school reminded me more of the inside of a mansion. There were artifacts that
I had never seen before, a library full of interesting books, several living rooms, bedrooms and studies and even a kitchen
that would make any housewife jealous. There was absolutely nothing that suggested that this was a school.
"You would think that," said Blaziken once we had covered
the majority of the areas. "But we have a place where the real learning goes on.
"Hey Blaziken," I had to ask him. "What happened to your claws?"
"Oh, these?" He held up his bandaged claws. "MetaboAnthro had injected my claws with a toxin that
infects any human I scratch."
I looked alarmed. It all made sense on how I became a hybrid.
"But Johiko had the toxin removed just yesterday. I'm still recovering."
"How many people did you infect?" I asked worriedly.
"Just one -- you."
"Oh... kay..." This was a good thing.
However, Blaziken looked troubled. "I'm not proud of it, so can we forget about it?"
I nodded and grunted, "Sure."
Deeper inside the mansion was a maze of metal hallways that were certainly not inside a normal
mansion. There were large, circular locked doors with various locking mechanisms to different rooms. Some of the doors read
"Ice Room -- Ice, Water, Dragon Hybrid Training Room"
"Dark Room -- Ghost, Dark and Psychic Hybrid Training Room"
There was even one that caught my interest. "Fire Room -- Fire and Dragon Hybrid Training Room"
"Hey Blaziken, what's with all the different "training rooms"?" I asked.
"Every hybrid is classified into one or two different "Types"," he said, stopping outside a room
marked "Fighting Room". These rooms help you learn how to harness your powers at control them a lot better. You and I, for
example, are Fire-and-Fighting Types. I happen to be a whiz at the Fire Room."
"Neat!" said Electra, walking over to a room marked "Electric Room." "I can't wait to get started!"
"Whoa now!" said a familiar voice. "You can't just run straight into these things. Once we register
your powers, you'll be good to go."
The four of us looked down the hallway to see the headmaster, Johiko, walking our direction.
"Headmaster!" said Blaziken in surprise. "I was just showing our new students the school."
"That's fine, Josh," said Johiko, putting up a hand. "I need to talk to you in private. Can you
bring them to their rooms and see me in my office?"
"Yes sir." He nodded and motioned to the three of us. "Come on, guys. Let's find your rooms."
Almost every bedroom in the mansion was a two-person deal. Suicuna and Electra were paired together
while I was paired with a Dragon-type hybrid named Mike "Flygon" Gyro. He was a Dragon-and-Ground Type that looked like a
cross between a dragon and an insect.
Don't panic! He had a muscular green body with a smooth, muscular torso. Flygon's hands were four-clawed
and his feet were rounded and digitigrade. He had a long, thick, green-and-light-green-striped tail with three sharp spikes
at the tip. He was one of the few hybrids that had wings and both of them were shaped like green diamonds with a red outline.
Flygon's head amazed me the most. He had a short muzzle with two short fangs mostly hidden under
his maw. Two long, thin, green antennae grew backwards from the top of his head. However, you could see his eyes through two
red, transparent "domes" over his eyes. He looked more like a dragon than an insect, so don't worry.
"Newbie, huh?" he said in a smooth, unconcerned kind of voice. He had a slight accent that I couldn't
identify. "You look just like Blaziken."
"That's no surprise," I said gruffly. "Blaziken is the one who turned me into a hybrid in the first
place." I extended a claw to shake his. "I'm Alex... but you can call me "Blaze"."
"Mike, aka "Flygon"." He shook my hand with a relatively firm grip. "Nice to meet you."
"Same here. So, how'd you come to be here in the first place?"
"I was born a hybrid in Russia. Apparently, the locals there don't appreciate
the damage I did."
"I didn't like them making fun of me, so I did a little arson to get them off my case."
"You know that never works!" I said, slightly offended.
"I learned that the hard way," shrugged Flygon. "Fortunately, the headmaster here busted me out
of jail on $3 million bond. That guy's a real life-saver!"
It was getting late and my classes started in the morning. After unpacking a few of my things,
I turned in for the night. However, Flygon suffered from permanent insomnia in his form, but he left the room so I could get
I thought about all that had happened to me over the past few days -- meeting Blaziken, becoming
a hybrid, seeing Johiko transform and this whole school of people just like me. I had a feeling that life was going to be
very different for me from now on.