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Hybrid Theory Sapphire Version: Suicuna's Novel

Hybrid Theory Sapphire Version: Suicuna's Novel

By shadowlugia249

 

Why? Why did I have to answer that ad? I was so immersed in the benefits of the super-vitamin that I forgot to read the fine print. If it wasn't for that stupid MetaboAnthro, I would still be normal. Life would have been just fine if I hadn't answered that stupid ad! Then again, my life right now isn't as bad as I had hoped. This school is the perfect place for people like me...

Whoa now! I'm spoiling the ending, aren't I? I'd probably better slow down and start from the beginning where it all went wrong. It all started when I was reading the local paper...

 

I was sitting in Fantastic Sam's Salon getting my hair done so that it actually stayed straight. If there was one thing that I pride myself on, it's my hair. I had a long, straight crop of it that reached down to my middle back. I was currently having it shampooed with the finest Aussie products that they had. No sense in trying to cut any corners here.

While I waited for my hair to dry, I read the Star Tribune -- St. Cloud's daily newspaper. I had just left high school and was looking for a part-time job to earn some quick cash for college. So far, there was nothing that was catching my attention...

...until I turned the page and saw a full-color advertisement for a company called "MetaboAnthro". Apparently, they were looking for volunteers to test some kind of super-vitamin. The ad read as thus:

 

MetaboAnthro Industries is seeking 50 people of all ages and walks of life to participate in a revolutionary experiment.

We are testing out a series of super-vitamin supplement formulas guaranteed to grant its user:

 

·          A Longer Life Span

·          Better Health

·          Stronger Muscles

·          Increased Intelligence

·          Select Elemental Manipulation

·          Stronger Emotional Control

 

All participants will be very well compensated for the road ahead!

 

·          No Experience Required!

·          No Degree Required!

·          Must be 18 or over!

 

"Wow," I said, reading the ad over again. "This'll solve all my problems."

There was some fine print, but I ignored it. It was probably just some legal stuff anyway. I paid for my haircut and pulled out my cell phone. Dialing the number in the ad, I waited for someone to pick up.

"Hello, MetaboAnthro Industries. How may I help you?"

"Hi!" I said anxiously. "My name is Yuna Kirasagi and I'm calling in response to your ad in the Star Tribune."

"Ahh." She seemed enthusiastic at the thought of me calling them. "Okay, we have an opening tomorrow at 3:00 PM. Can you bring your medical papers with you when you come?"

"Uh..." This was unexpected, but I agreed anyway.

I was given directions and I hung up. I should have been suspicious of her enthusiasm, but I needed the money and I wasn't about to turn down this opportunity to get some easy cash.

 

It took me most of the next morning to recruit all of my medical papers to bring to the building. I wasn't the most organized of women, but I had a feeling that I had acquired everything that I had.

Since I didn't have a car, I had to take the bus in order to reach St. Cloud. It was a rather uneventful trip except for one incident with a woman wrapped up in cloths and a heavy coat.

Somehow, she seemed to know what I was doing because she sat down next to me and spoke to me.

"Don't do it."

"What?" I was taken aback at her concerned tone of voice.

"If you know what's good for you, you won't go into MetaboAnthro."

I blinked. "Why?"

The woman looked at me with unusually black eyes. "If you go into that building, there's a good chance that you'll never come back out... a free woman at least."

I wasn't about to let this odd woman scare me out of getting some free cash. "You're really weird, you know that?"

The woman unwrapped the cloths around her face and looked at me again. I flinched when I saw a purple-furred face with pointed whiskers on her muzzle and deep black eyes. She had long, pointed ears like a cross between a cat and an elf.

"Am I?" she said calmly. "I won't be surprised when you end up like me. Don't say I didn't warn you."

I was breathing hard when the woman got up, replaced her face cloth and got off the bus at her stop. That was weird! She looked like one of those people suffering from some kind of disease... I think it was called "Hybrid" something. I had only seen two such people in my life with her being the third. She had scared me, but not enough for me to give up on this free opportunity.

Once I reached the bus station, I walked a few blocks to the front of MetaboAnthro Industries.

Wow. This place was huge! It reached up over 50 stories, but it was mostly concrete and had very few windows. A massive stone sign reading "MetaboAnthro Industries" stretched across the stone face. I guessed that the inside of the building would be like plain and ordinary...

 

...and I was wrong. This place was obviously furbished with a lot of money. The floor was made of polished granite, they had real leather furniture and a massive metal sculpture that went up several stories stood behind the reception desk. People in lab coats were walking in and out of various doors on the far end of the room. I could have sworn that the ceiling went up to the top. I could see many glass windows and walkways webbing around and above the metal sculpture.

I thought I saw several strange figures like that strange woman on the bus walking by when the receptionist got my attention.

"May I help you?"

I turned my attention back to the ground floor and went up to the reception desk.

"Yes, I'm Yuna Kirasagi and I have a 3:00 appointment?"

"Ah, yes. We've been expecting you." She took out a clipboard and a booklet and handed them to me. "Here is a selection of different vitamins that we are testing. Once you pick one, just write down the code number on this survey and bring it back. Don't worry, your spot is guaranteed and everything will be kept confidential."

I took both items and went to sit on one of the leather sofas nearby. The survey was pretty straightforward -- it asked me how old I was, where I lived and what my job was.

When that was filled out, I flipped open the booklet and paged through the various courses. There were no pictures, but it gave a detailed description of what each vitamin did. However, some of them had a big "Unavailable" sign stamped in red ink across them. Apparently, they were already taken.

One of the courses read as thus:

 

Typhlosion Course -- Code TY41

Benefits: Enhanced Strength, Toned Muscles, Fire Manipulation, Increased Intelligence

 

That was it. I had expected more, but apparently that was all there was. There were no side-effects or any warnings whatsoever. Huh.

What also confused me were the words "Fire Manipulation". How could a mere vitamin allow you to control fire? Double huh.

Regardless, it didn't quite fit my preference. I paged through the booklet and looked at the other options. I wasn't really looking for better muscles or enhanced strength: I was more of a speed person.

I considered the "Celebi Course", but that had been taken. The "Articuno Course" was taken as well. It seems that all the good ones were taken...

...until I read the following:

 

Suicune Course -- Code SU19

Benefits: Increased Intelligence, Enhanced Speed, Sharper Senses, Enhanced Strength, Wind and Water Manipulation

 

That seemed to work. It had the "Enhanced Speed" that I was looking for and the "Increased Intelligence" didn't seem so bad. I wrote down "SU19" on the survey and returned the items to the receptionist.

She took the items and said, "Very good. May I see your medical papers?" I gave them to her and she began rifling through them. "You can go sit down now. Someone will attend to you soon."

I did so and entertained myself by looking up at the massive metal sculpture. It looked like a half-human, half-animal creature that I did not recognize. It seemed odd that they would put an animal statue in a human facility. Regardless, I waited a good 20 minutes before a man in a white lab coat approached me.

"Yuna Kirasagi?"

"Yes?"

"My name is Dr. Phillips and I will be walking you through the Suicune Course today. Will you follow me, please?"

I did and we started through a series of locked doors guarded by keypads, palm scanners and voice recognition locks. I wondered why a simple vitamin company would have so much security, but I figured that it would be rude to ask.

As we made our way through the gauntlet, I heard a voice in my head shout out, YOU WON'T CONTROL ME!!! I'LL BREAK OUT OF HERE!!!

"We're testing a kind of mind amplifier in the next room," said Dr. Phillips, seeing me look worried. "It's still a little too powerful to put on the market yet."

Somehow, I seriously doubted that, but it wasn't my business, so I let it go.

We reached a simple examining room somewhere on the 16th floor and Dr. Phillips had me strip down and put on an apron. It felt a little drafty, but I dealt with it just fine.

Dr. Phillips went over to a steel briefcase lying on a table nearby and opened it. Inside was the biggest syringe that I had ever seen! It had three chambers, three vials of colored liquid -- blue, violet and clear -- and a needle three times the size of a bicycle pump needle!

"What are you going to do with that?!" I yelped, going pale.

"This syringe contains a combination of chemicals specified for the Suicune Course," Dr. Phillips explained. "I'm going to inject all three at once and that'll be it." When I still flushed, he said, "It'll be just one poke and a slight chill. I can assure you that no one has suffered any side effects as of yet, so you are in good hands."

I swallowed and took a deep breath before I handed him my arm. He smiled and applied a tourniquet, making sure that he got a good vein. After swabbing the spot with alcohol, he injected the needle. I bit my lip but still looked at the spot when it went in. I think that it's more painful when you aren’t expecting it.

The chemicals were like ice as they were slowly introduced into my system. I got Goosebumps from Hell as I tried not to move while the needle was in me. When the three chambers were empty, the syringe was drawn from me like having a splinter removed.

After applying a cotton swab and a bandage to it, Dr. Phillips said, "You're going to feel a little dizzily now. I suggest that you lie back on the table while the chemicals work their way through your system. When it's all done, just press the "Call" button next to the door." He left.

Holy &*@#!!! He wasn't kidding! It felt as if I had been thrown head-first into a suicidal skydive without a parachute! My head was spinning wildly and I couldn't focus or concentrate on anything. I couldn't move from the sheer dizziness that I was feeling.

All the while, my body had gone into shock from the extreme cold that was running through my veins. I was shivering non-stop and it felt like something was tugging on my face and skull. I couldn't feel my breasts either -- it was as if they had fallen off from frostbite or something.

Soon, the sheer chill in my body ended... or at least my body became used to it enough not to shiver uncontrollably anymore. I could focus a lot more, too. Getting up, I put a hand to my head and tried to concentrate.

It was then that I noticed that something was wrong. Something was on my head that wasn't supposed to be! I felt it and panicked. It felt as if I had grown horns! Two short ones were on the sides of a much larger one. It wasn't heavy, but it was very hard. Seeing a full-body mirror in the corner, I went over to it...

...and screamed!!! What happened to me?! I had grown a pair of aqua-blue horns with a large crystal-shaped one growing upwards and backwards from my head, adding a solid foot to my height.

Not only that, but my entire body had changed! My face... my beautiful face had bulged out with a short, white muzzle. The upper half of my face was blue with the lower half of it all the way down my... flat chest and all the way down to my calves was a pale white color.

I did not recognize my new piercing-red eyes as I ran a blue hand over my face. Along with that, my hair had thickened in strength, but it was a violent shade of... purple?! It grew past my waist and hit my shins. The rest of my body was a deep-blue shade, hairless and smooth. Other than my body, eye and hair color, the only things that had changed in my appearance was my chest, my muzzle and the three horns atop my head.

Regardless, I screamed again and started panicking. I went into a berserk fit of rage and confusion and ended up crushing a chair to splinters when I threw it clear across the room.

My mind was reeling with questions. What kind of place was this? Why did I turn into a mutant freak with that cocktail of chemicals? Was this part of the program? What was going on?!

My mind was so full of rage and confusion that I couldn't hear the pipes in the walls groaning. Eventually, the sprinklers burst apart of their own accord, drenching me in water and abruptly ending my rampage.

I blinked and shook the water out of my face. What had happened to me? I had never been so angry and confused before. Was this part of the program? I wanted answers. Walking over to the door, I calmly pressed the "Call" button and then sat back down on one of the remaining chairs. The sprinklers continued to pour down on the room.

I felt... different somehow. I felt as if all my anger and rage for everything bad that had happened in my life had been vented clean out of my body. I was now calmer than I had ever been before.

While I waited for Dr. Phillips, I swirled my hand in the water that had accumulated in a metal bowl. Somehow, I could "feel" the force of the water in my mind.

On a hunch, I lifted my hand out of the bowl and a small column of water rose up at my command. I could see little ripples in it where the sprinklers rained down on it. Feeling confident, I cupped my hand and the column turned into an orb of water that hovered under my hand. Cool!

Just then, Dr. Phillips walked in wearing a rain suit. "I see that you've already figured out one of the benefits of your new form."

I lost focus on the orb and it dissolved into regular water again. Very calmly, I looked Dr. Phillips in the face and said, "What did you do to me?"

Dr. Phillips pulled up a stool, wheeled it over to me and sat down. "MetaboAnthro has been experimenting with a range of chemicals from... various donors to help create hybrids. Hybrid Syndrome is a rare illness with different outcomes, but we've managed to pass it onto healthy people to help enhance their lives."

"Why?" I didn't understand why they would infect healthy people with an illness like Hybrid Syndrome.

"You and 49 other people have been introduced with various concoctions of Hybrid Syndrome so that we can build up our army."

Say what?! "Army? What do you mean?"

Dr. Phillips smiled evilly. "It seems that regular people have considered hybrids as "freaks" and "outcasts". The leader of MetaboAnthro, Dargon, has been recruiting people for his army to stand up against the people who consider hybrids outcasts. Pretty soon, the hybrids are going to conquer the world.

I should have been scared, but for some reason, fear didn't seem to register in my mind. I was completely free of all important emotions.

Dr. Phillips got up. "I see that closing your heart has wiped your mind of all emotion. Pretty soon, you won't remember anything about what went on today."

I did feel my mind ebbing. I managed to look him in the face and say, "You're not going to get away with this."

Dr. Phillips laughed. "I'm afraid we already have. You see, you don't exist anymore. You have no records, no family... nothing! Oh by the way, here's a gift from us." With a sudden chop, he knocked me out and I remembered no more.

 

I woke somewhere inside MetaboAnthro Industries inside a glass cylinder. I tried to concentrate on where I was, but my memory seemed to be fading. It seemed that "closing my heart" was working all too well. Soon, I would just be a mindless servant for this twisted company.

Now I remember the hybrid woman's warning all too well. Why hadn't I heeded her words and just backed out? I felt like such a jerk for letting them lure me in like this!

Looking around, I saw several more hybrids in glass prisons like mine. One of them looked like a metallic bird with razor-sharp wings. One looked like a furry sloth with three sharp claws on its hands. One looked like a black dog with rich gray-and-black fur. All of them, however, seemed unaware of their surroundings. It appeared that their minds had already failed them.

I sat down as best as I could inside the chamber and thought. Since they would probably be the last few thoughts that I would have, I made them count. What had Dr. Phillips said about me not existing anymore? It seemed that they destroyed my permanent records and all of my medical files. I was nobody anymore. I didn't exist. Period. Oh well, I guess my life was over now. I had no reason to life except for MetaboAnthro's army.

Some time went by before and I must have fallen asleep because the next thing I heard was a tremendous explosion somewhere inside the facility and the intercom rang out.

"EMERGENCY!!! EMERGENCY!!! INTRUDER DETECTED IN SECTOR 1!!! EMERGENCY!!! EMERGENCY!!! INTRUDER DETECTED IN SECTOR 1!!!"

Whoever had broken in didn't stop there. I heard people screaming and several explosions rang out through the floors.

"WARNING!!! INTRUDER HAS BREACHED SECTOR 2!!! WARNING!!! INTRUDER HAS BREACHED SECTOR 2!!!"

The intruder was obviously giving the staff a lot of difficulties because I heard their screaming intensify and the building began shaking from the explosions.

"DANGER!!! DANGER!!! INTRUDER HAS BREACHED SECTOR 3!!! ALL PERSONNEL DESTROY AT ALL COSTS!!!

DANGER!!! DANGER!!! INTRUDER HAS BREACHED SECTOR 3!!! ALL PERSONNEL DESTROY AT ALL COSTS!!!"

The tremors were getting worse. The intruder was making its way up the building to where the hybrids were kept. I had a sinking feeling that whoever it was was extremely powerful and smart enough to take on an entire building by his or herself.

Suddenly, I heard people screaming and a voice cry out on this floor, Be gone! You people will not hinder me!

Just then...

KA-BOOOOM!!!

The wall to the room we were in literally vaporized when a blue aura plowed through it. It was, indeed, a hybrid, but it didn't seem like the renegade type.

It stood on two digitigrade feet and had smooth, silver-white skin except for on its toned torso. It had a long, spiked tail and less than a dozen blue "plates" growing from its back. The hybrid had a pointed skull with a blue "mask" around its navy-blue eyes.

The hybrid had obviously taken out everything and everyone in its way because once it was in the room, it took its time walking around. It looked at the hybrids in the cells and appeared to be making up its mind. It put its hand on the cell with the steel bird-hybrid and its occupant began glowing a bright blue. It soon became so bright that when it dissolved, it wasn't there anymore!

"What the-?!" I said out loud.

It must have heard me through the glass because it went to my cell next. It had such a kind face, but its eyes were filled with determination.

You can still speak? it asked me in its soft yet firm voice. It didn’t speak with its mouth but instead projected its words straight into my head. Can you still think for yourself?

"Yes... but I can't remember who I am anymore. My time is just about up." I rested my head against the glass.

But the hybrid shook its head. There is still hope for you. I can restore your memory, but you must swear not to tell anyone about me... at least not yet.

"What...?"

I can give you a new chance at life, but you must not tell anyone about this until I see you again. Do you swear?

My mind was fading fast. I had no choice. "I swear! Please help me!"

The hybrid nodded and held its hand in front of me. A letter materialized in my hands and I took it. When you next awake, you must go into hiding until you are found by one of my contacts. Whatever you do, do not come back here! My contact will find you soon. This letter will explain everything.

Its eyes glowed a bright blue and I felt suddenly weightless. The whole world went white and I completely blacked out.

 

"Ohh... what hit me? Where am I?"

I came to inside an alley far from MetaboAnthro Industries. The last thing I could remember was the face of the silver-white hybrid and then... nothing! It had said something about a letter and a contact or something.

When I got up, I found myself fully-clothed and a letter was in my hand. I had been donned with a white tank-top connected to a pink scarf with an odd charm and yellow bands around my waist. I was wearing blue shorts with an leather belt and a blue "cape" around my waistline and skin-tight blue leather boots came up to just below my knees. Two white ribbons swirled mysteriously around me on their own accord. The fashion was quite catchy.

I turned my attention to the letter in my hand. It had been written with a loose, spidery writing. It said:

 

Suicuna,

I am calling you that because every hybrid has a second "nickname" and I felt that this name suited you quite well.

Anyway, after yesterday, your mind, thoughts and emotions should be back to normal by now. The only thing that I could not change was your physical being. Don't worry; you will learn to like being a hybrid.

As with most hybrids, you possess the ability to manipulate specific elements -- water and wind in your case. You should practice them but keep them to yourself so that you do not attract any unwanted guests.

You are probably wondering what I had said about a "contact", yes? There is a hybrid named Professor Johiko Darck that runs a special school for people like you. He should be on his way to talk to you even as you read this. If you need proof that is him, ask for "a broken star". He should understand.

However, Johiko and I have never been properly introduced and it would be in his best interest that he be kept in the dark about me. I must remind you that you must speak to no one, not even Johiko about me until I contact you again in the near future.

Suicuna, you are the only one who escaped MetaboAnthro with your memory intact. I will attend to the other hybrids in due time, but you gave your word that you would not speak of me to anyone. If you do break your word, I will know about it. Until we meet again, I suggest that you do what Johiko Darck tells you to do.

I look forward to seeing you again in the near future. Until then, I bid you good day and good luck.

An important friend.

 

I soaked in as much of this as I could. The hybrid was apparently working in secret and preferred to keep his name a mystery. Since I had already given my word that I would keep my mouth shut, I was determined to keep my silence.

"Suicuna... Suicuna..."

I rolled the word around in my head for a while. It made sense. My name was Yuna and I had signed up for the "Suicune Course". I liked it, so I made "Suicuna" my regular name.

Whoever this "Johiko Darck" was was obviously a hybrid but it seemed that he and... him had never met before. I wondered how they knew about each other, but I figured technology these days was could work wonders. Since he was probably on his way, I decided to go somewhere where I would get his attention.

"I think you've already gotten it."

WHAT THE--?!

A well-built man in a blue suit and gray hair... wait a minute... I take that back. He had shiny silver hair. Anyway, he had appeared out of nowhere carrying a metal briefcase and nearly gave me a heart attack!

He realized that he had startled me and apologized. "I'm sorry. I have a habit of doing that to people. Are you alright?"

I recovered and looked at the man. "I'm okay. Who are you?"

The man pulled out a card from his pocket and handed it to me. "Professor Johiko Darck. I'm headmaster and founder of "Johiko's School for the Gifted". May I ask your name?"

I wasn't sure what to make of this man, so I told him my hybrid name. "Suicuna."

Johiko said nothing for a minute, blinked and shook his head. "Pardon me for saying this, but I believe your true name is "Yuna Kirasagi", am I right?"

"How'd you--?"

"I have a way of finding out."

"That reminds me... how do I know you're not from MetaboAnthro? Let me see that "broken star"."

Johiko appeared taken aback, but obliged. "You seem to require proof. Very well."

He spun in place and was suddenly engulfed by a white light. When it dissolved, I could have sworn that I was looking at the hybrid that had saved me...

...but with key differences. The hybrid had silver-white skin but Johiko's was more of a smoky-gray. The hybrid hadn't been wearing anything, while Johiko was wearing an orange T-shirt and blue shorts. My savior hadn't had a hair on him but Johiko had a head full of untidy brown hair. The color of their masks, eyes and tail spikes was also different where Johiko's was gray and the hybrid's was navy-blue. Finally, Johiko had eight red back plates whereas the unnamed hybrid had had ten blue ones.

"If you wanted proof, here it is." He had a much younger and more freelance voice than his human form.

He pulled up the right sleeve on his shirt to reveal a silver tattoo of a star with its points detached from the center. Good enough for me.

"I'm sorry that I was so rude," I apologized, but Johiko merely smiled and chuckled.

"I get asked that all the time. Don't worry about it."

Over the next two hours, Johiko and I talked about the school where he came from. It was a specially-funded facility for hybrids to live and learn together. There were hybrids from all over the world who came there and were able to harness their powers for good.

"It seems like a decent place," I said when we finished. "But I don't have any money for school. I don't exist anymore."

"That's not a problem at all," said Johiko, smiling. "We provide funding for hybrids like yourself on a regular basis. It's completely hassle-free."

"Free school?! It doesn't get much better than that!"

"I've been told that on countless occasions." He went back to his briefcase. "If you want to come, I can arrange a bus to pick you up tomorrow at 2:00. Did you still want to come?"

Was he mad?! "Of course I want to come! I'd love it!"

Johiko smiled and patted me on the back. "It's settled then. Just be in this alley at 2:00 sharp tomorrow afternoon. Now if you'll excuse me..." He got up and gathered his things. "I must be going."

He rounded a corner of the alley before I realized that I had one more question. "Wait! What powers do you--?"

He was gone. He had vanished into thin air. "Have? Darn."

I'm a psychic, said Johiko's voice in my head. I can read and manipulate minds at my command. Don't worry, you're not hearing things.

"Oh."

I guess I had better get ready for my trip to the school.

 

I didn't have much to get ready for the next day. Since I didn't exist anymore and since MetaboAnthro was out for my blood, all I did to get ready was practice my water and wind control.

I was getting quite good at it. I managed to cause some confusion and chaos when a freak wave drenched some unsuspecting beachgoers. I also threw some surfers off their boards by ramping up the wind speed to the point that they couldn't stay balanced anymore. The "weather" got so bad that the lifeguard had ordered the beach to be evacuated.

How did I do this with out being seen? I hid out in an abandoned building near the beach and caused a little elemental mayhem. I found that I could control the water and the wind even from a good distance away. I was almost like that X-man, Storm except that I couldn't summon lightning from storm clouds and I could only manipulate water, not create it.

I was having so much fun tormenting the beachgoers that I nearly freaked out when I saw that it was 1:50! I had to run like the devil was behind me in order to reach the alley in time. As I ran, I snatched a water bottle from a picnic table so that I could get some more practice.

 

The bus had just arrived when I returned to the alley, completely breathless. The bus driver laughed when she saw me get on.

The bus driver was also a hybrid, but she looked more like a cat than anything else. She had creamy-yellow fur except for a large puff of purple around her neck and tail. She had pointed cat-like ears and cute black eyes.

"Hi there!" she said in a sugary voice. "I'm Karen Byron, but you can call me "Delcatty". What do they call you?"

I guess I could tell my name to a fellow hybrid. "I'm Yuna Kirasagi, but people call me "Suicuna"."

""Suicuna", eh"?" Delcatty seemed to be overcome by the giggles. "Okay, "Suicuna", find a seat." She continued to giggle.

I rolled my eyes and went to join a pair of hybrids deeply immersed in conversation. They were the only two on the small bus, so it wasn't hard to find a seat.

They didn't notice me until I said, "Hello, I'm Suicuna."

The male hybrid looked like... I guess I could say "chicken", but the look of his furry muscles suggested he was anything but. He had a flaming-red-colored body except for a spiky yellow pattern that ran from below his knees to his taloned feet. His taloned hands had only three claws but seemed to match a bird's scaled feet from his wrists upwards.

This hybrid's face was slightly bird-like with a small, hooked beak that blended perfectly with the rest of his face. A V-shaped "antenna" split from the tip of his beak, traveled up his brows and pointed upwards from his head. Under that were two very fierce-looking yellow-and-blue eyes. If looks could kill, he would be a natural at it.

"Hey, I'm Alex, but you can call me "Blaze"." He had a deep, bass-like growl of a voice. Something about his voice told me that he was really a gentle giant and his personality didn't back up his appearance. Maybe he was a test subject like I had been...

"It's nice to meet you... Suicuna," said the other hybrid, a female. "My name is Ashley, but everyone calls me "Electra"."

Electra looked more "human-like" than Blaze did. Her long, trim figure was one most girls would only dream about. She sported a blue tank top and navy-blue bell-bottom pants that covered her three-toed, paw-like feet. Her fur was short and had an electric-green shade about it. Atop Electra's head were three "spikes" that I assumed were her ears and her hair together. Strange yellow markings lined these spikes along with some of her muzzled face and the tip of her short, bushy tail that stuck out from the seat of her pants. She had the most beautiful clear-blue eyes and in one of her four-fingered hands was a small, green drawstring bag.

"So," said Blaze. "What's your story?"

This was the start of a non-stop conversation between the three of us. We discussed how we had become hybrids in the first place. Blaze, it turns out, had been attacked by a hybrid that looked exactly like he did now and he had been transformed overnight. Electra, however, had been born a hybrid.

I told them about what MetaboAnthro did to me, but true to my word, I didn't say a thing about the hybrid that had saved me. When asked how I escaped, though, I made the story up that I had broken out of the facility by smashing the glass from my prison cell with my new horn. It was actually very difficult to break, as I found out when I smashed the front door down of the warehouse by the beach. My horn was probably ten times harder than steel.

When we started on the topic of each of our powers, Electra showed me hers by controlling the radio from a distance. Her eyes glowed a brighter blue and tiny sparks jumped from between her nimble fingers when she used it. It turns out that Electra can control anything electrical or that can build up an electric charge.

Blaze's power, however, was a little bit more dangerous. He had to roll down a window to get some more room when he fired off a jet of fire from his beak at an unsuspecting mailbox. When he did this, I noticed that miniature flames erupted around his wrists as if he was getting pumped up to use his power.

"So... what's your power?" said Electra after Blaze had calmed down.

I pulled out the water bottle that I had swiped from the beach and uncapped it. Taking a deep breath, I put my hand over the top and raised the water out of the bottle behind it. Trailing it behind me I twirled the ribbons of water just like my own white ribbons. All I had to do was guide it with my fingers and it did some pretty exotic patterns.

Blaze and Electra clapped at my performance, but I still had a grand finale to perform. I molded the water into a large sphere with my hands and suddenly shot it out like a jet stream at an unsuspecting Blaze. However, his fur was so hot that the water vaporized into steam a few seconds after he was hit, leaving him bone dry.

Blaze coughed and spluttered because some of the water had hit him in the face. When he recovered, though, he gave me a look that could have snapped steel.

"Watch it, genius!" he said, shaking himself dry.

"Sorry about that." I actually laughed along with Electra. "I can't create water; I can only control it... Oh!" I suddenly remembered. "I can also do this!"

I turned and stared at one of the air-conditioner vents. My hair and ribbons rippled and started blowing in a non-existent breeze. The air coming from the vents began blowing with such force that Blaze, Electra and Delcatty were nearly ripped from their seats. If it weren't for their seat belts, they most certainly would have been.

"Okay! So you're good! We get it!" cried Blaze and Electra over the gust.

I dropped the wind speed and blushed, though it was hard to see with my pale-white cheeks. The three of us returned to our conversation about our stories and what we were planning to do at school. Not much else happened during the rest of the ride.

 

"This isn't as bad as I thought," said Electra as she looked up at the school. "The leaflet certainly lived up to its par."

The exterior of Johiko's School for the Gifted was everything Johiko had said it would be. Well-manicured lawns were spread around the main building like green blankets. Many marble ruins were strewn throughout various points on these lawns complete with an Olympic-sized pool to the left of the main building. It looked more like a mansion than a school with hybrids of every shape, size and color walking around the grounds going about their daily business.

"This is more..." I said, unsure of what to make of it. ""Classy" than what I'm used to. I like it."

"Just you wait until you see the inside of it," said a voice that sounded identical to Blaze's.

Standing in front of the front doors was a hybrid that could have been Blaze's carbon-copy, smiling as much as his beaked face would allow. However, the key difference between the two was that this hybrid had its claws completely wrapped in bloody bandages.

"Hiya Blaziken!" said Blaze, happily waving to him.

Blaziken seemed confused for a moment but then smiled. "I'm going to guess that Johiko told you my name since I sure didn't."

"Johiko?" said Blaze, confused.

"Ah. He probably used the name "Professor Darck" with you, yes?"

"Huh." He seemed to get it now.

"Are you guys going to just stand there, mouths agape? Or are you going to come in here? I'll be glad to give you guys a personal tour if you want."

"But our stuff..." said Electra, pointing to her suitcase.

"No problem at all." Blaziken waved at something behind us and used his beak to give a sharp whistle. From out of nowhere, a hybrid appeared next to us, causing us all to jump.

The hybrid had a coat of beautiful white, puffy fur all over his body except for his jet-black face. He had two calm, piercing-red eyes, a black "third eye" on his forehead and an odd, curved, black horn sticking out of the right side of his head. He had a tail, but it reminded me of an old-fashioned black can opener with two points in opposite ends of the limb. It stuck out of the only piece of clothing on him -- a pair of tattered black-and-blue shorts. His arms and ankles were wrapped heavily in heavy blue bandages. Four long, black claws were on each of his hands with a fifth claw sticking out from his elbows. The same could be said of his digitigrade feet except that he only had three claws on each of his feet and a fourth claw was sticking out of his heel. For some reason, this hybrid gave me the chills.

"Absol, could you please take these students' luggage to two available dormitories?"

"Of course," said Absol in a deep, dark voice. He picked up mine and Electra's suitcases, hung Blaze's over his curved horn and carried them effortlessly into the school.

For some reason, I liked this particular hybrid. He had a take-no-prisoners attitude about him.

"Cute guy," I said impressively.

"You'd be surprised how powerful in the field he is," sighed Blaziken, shaking his head. "He's the envy of all the Dark-Type hybrids here." He turned and motioned to the doors that Absol had gone through. "How about we take that tour now?"

 

Johiko's School for the Gifted looked more like a mansion on the inside than an actual school. Rare and expensive artifacts were on display in glass cases or on shelves throughout the building. There was a massive library full of interesting books, multiple dens for hybrids to hang out, dormitories, private areas for people seeking some peace and quiet and even a kitchen that most professional chefs would only dream about. Nothing whatsoever suggested that this was really a school.

"You probably think that," said Blaziken when I told him this. "But there's a section deep inside where the real learning goes on."

"Blaziken?" asked Blaze. "Why are your hands so bandaged and bloody?"

"Oh, these things?" He held up his claws. "There was a little situation with MetaboAnthro and I had been given a toxin that injects my DNA into anyone I harm."

Both Blaze and I were startled when we heard this. So, there was another escapee from MetaboAnthro. Blaze also seemed to confirm that it was indeed Blaziken that had turned him into a hybrid.

"Thankfully, Johiko removed the toxin yesterday, so I'm not in danger of infecting anybody anymore. They're still a little numb from the anesthetic, though."

"How many people did you scratch?" asked Blaze in concern.

"Fortunately just you. I apologize if I damaged your life in any way."

"Oh... it's okay. I actually like being a hybrid."

"I'm glad to hear that."

Farther inside the mansion was a series of metal hallways that I was sure were not inside your typical mansion. Large, circular, metal doors signified that there were rooms behind them. However, they were all locked by various locking mechanisms. There were many different rooms and what was inside was etched into a plaque on the wall next to them. Some of them read like so:

"Dragon Room -- Fire, Ice and Dragon Hybrid Training Room"

"Grass Room -- Grass and Ground Hybrid Training Room"

"Ghost Room -- Ghost and Dark Hybrid Training Room"

There were even two that I found interesting. "Water Room -- Water, Ice and Dragon Hybrid Training Room" and "Wind Room -- Wind, Flying and Dragon Hybrid Training Room".

(Author's Note: I know that "Wind" is not a Pokémon Type, but it feels more complete if I add it in anyway.)

"Yo Blaziken, what are all the different "Training Rooms" for?" wondered Blaze.

Blaziken stopped near a room that read, "Fighting Room -- Fighting Hybrid Only Training Room".

"Each and every hybrid is classified into one or two different "Types"," he said, pointing to each of us in turn. "These rooms are designed to help focus and enhance everyone's powers a lot better than regular training. Blaze and I, believe it or not, are Fire-and-Fighting-Type hybrids." He turned to Electra. "You look like you're an Electric-Type, right?"

She nodded. "I suppose so."

"And Suicuna? I take it that you are a Water-Type?"

"And Wind," I added.

"Sweet!" said Electra, heading over to the "Electric Room". "I can't wait to start!"

"Slow down, Jeff Gordon!" said a familiar voice. "These rooms can't be used just like that! We have to register your... character before we get that far."

All four of us wheeled around to face a familiar hybrid walking down the metal hallway. Professor Johiko Darck, Headmaster of this school, was sidling over to us with his tail trailing from side to side as he walked.

"Headmaster!" cried Blaziken. Johiko's sudden appearance had startled him slightly. "I was just giving our new students a grand tour."

"That's fine, Josh," said Johiko, smiling pleasantly. :I was actually looking for you. There is an important matter that I need to talk to you about. Will you join me in my office after these three have settled down in their dorm rooms?"

"Yes sir." Blaziken nodded and turned around to face us. I wasn't sure, but I thought I could see Johiko wink at me out of the corner of my eye. "Let's go, guys. I'll find you some decent rooms before you turn in."

 

A majority of the dormitories in the mansion housed about two hybrids each. Electra and I had been given a room together while Blaze had been hooked up with a Dragon-and-Ground Type called Mike "Flygon" Gyro.

While Electra and I unpacked, we talked about our futures at the school. I brought up the subject of the mysterious "Training Rooms".

"What do you suppose is inside those "Training Rooms, Electra?" I asked her, putting my spare clothes in a drawer.

She shrugged and hung her green drawstring bag on the bedpost. "I dunno. It's probably some kind of device to help us practice our powers."

"Like what?"

Electra shrugged again. "Maybe the "Electric Room" has an electric generator in it?"

"That seems kind of dangerous." I flinched when I pictured Electric-Type hybrids gathering around a power plant.

"That's why we're just guessing here. I really have no idea what's in them."

"Oh." I quickly changed the topic. "Do you think we'll meet any cute hybrid boys here?" I thought about Absol when he had appeared to carry our bags.

Electra looked at me and giggled. "Why? Don't you think Blaze or Blaziken are cute enough?"

I blinked and shrugged, putting my water bottle on my bed stand. "I don't know. They're a little too... "hot-headed" for me. I prefer to date someone who's more… like me. A Water-Type, perhaps."

Electra sighed and put a metal rod in a drawer. "You're too picky! Men aren't just going to walk up to you with that attitude!"

The nerve of her! I huffed and placed my hands on my hips. "Well, what about you, wise guy? What do you plan to do?"

Electra rolled her eyes and plopped down on her bed. "I never got into boys, hybrid or otherwise. But... you never know. Maybe love will come my way one day."

"Whatever." I flopped onto my own bed and looked out the window.

It was getting late and I had a lot of things on my mind. I thought about all that had happened to me over the past few days. MetaboAnthro, becoming a hybrid, the mysterious psychic hybrid, meeting Electra and Blaze and coming to a school full of people like me. I had a feeling in my soul that life was about to take an interesting turn from now on.

END