Chapter 15: Deal with the Devil

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Chapter 15: Fish Mafia
(Y/N) drifted in unconsciousness as she saw a ship being tossed about in a storm rough sea.
"What an awful storm..."
"The storm is coming!" A crew mate called out. "Hold onto the ropes!"
In the madness, (Y/N) caught sight of a woman pulling an unconscious man through the waves to safety. When she dragged him to shore, (Y/N) was shocked to see she was a mermaid.
"Oh look! He's breathing!"
"Prince Eric!" A voice called out.
The mermaid jumped back into the water as an older gentleman and dog appeared, helping the disoriented man to his feet.
"A girl saved me...she had a beautiful voice..."
As the humans vanished, the mermaid climbed up onto a rock.
"What is this sound coming from my chest? I know one day my dream will come true. Part of your world!"
(Y/N), but noticed suspicious creatures gleaming at her, cackling. She was pulled for her dreams and woke with a yawn.
"Must be homesick if I'm dreaming of the sea." She gave Swampert his morning chin scratches before turning to see Grim miraculously studying!
"Hmm...what are the trends for this application problem...if there are only 2 answers left...Hmm..."
"Has he been up all night?" (Y/N) asked Crobat, who nodded.
Grim growled. "Fnya! Don't shout like that! You made me forget what I'm trying to memorize. Today's the first day of exams, you know!"
"I know, that's why I started studying a month ago."
"You and I are like 2 peas in a pod, so don't hold me back! You got that?"
(Y/N) shot him a look as she and Swampert got up. "I haven't been in school since I was 10 and I'm not native to this world, and somehow I'm an A student, who's really holding who back?"
"Whatever! I have a secret weapon!"
"All right, let's go take those exams then."
"Time's up, puppies!" Professor Crewel commanded. "Put your pens down and pass your tests forward. This concludes all the written exams for this class."
(Y/N), who had been playing with Raichu since she'd finished a little bit ago, followed instructions. She then glanced at her friends who were all cheering.
"Sit!" The Professor called. "It's too early to celebrate. Those who receive failing marks will be stuck taking remedial classes during Christmas break...well then, class dismissed."
"Ah! It's finally over!" Ace cheered.
"I did my best." Deuce said to himself. "Now all we need to do is wait for our results."
"Hehe! That test was way too easy for me!" Grim boasted.
Ace noticed this. "Huh? You both seem pretty confident. Usually (Y/N) is the only one who doesn't have a defeated look after a test."
"Hehe!" The cat laughed. "I'm different from how I was back then! Now people are gonna come to me saying 'Grim, you're such a genius! Grim, help me study!'"
Raichu laughed, rolling around on his surfboard tail, as (Y/N) struggled not to join him. Grim was too proud to notice.
Deuce gave the electric/psychic type a scratch on the belly with a smile. "Actually, I'm very confident this time around. I'll take this as a victory."
"Coming from the guy who cries his eyes out when he barely passes an exam?" His dorm mate teased. "Well, I'm feeling confident too, so I won't fail!"
"Aw, my boys are growing up." (Y/N) teased lightly. "I'm proud you guys studied hard."
The humans blushed, but Ace hid his behind his bravado. "Kind of..this exam was easy peasy!"
"Well, since class is over, I'm going to head out to the track and field club." Deuce announced.
Ace nodded. "And I have basketball club. Well, that's it for the day, see you all later!"
"See ya guys." (Y/N) waved. "I promised Flygon and Starraptor I'd take them flying over the ocean after exams are over."
"And I'm gonna nap!" Grim stated curtly. "I'm so tired from studying all night."
(Y/N) dropped off Grim at the dorm and saddled up Flygon and Starraptor. As the trio neared to the beach, (Y/N) dawned her weather goggles and smirked at her dragon.
"All right Flygon, no beginners today. Let's go all out!"
He dove at the water at high speeds, leveling out at the last second to avoid diving in, before racing to clear crashing waves. (Y/N) breathed in the salt water deeply, feeling like she was home. Now that she was alone were her Pokémon, she realized home much she really missed Hoenn. The trainer shook her head and threw herself into the aerial maneuvers. The trio practiced flips, dives, rolls, and other tricks, and (Y/N) practiced jumping between the two and remounting them, mid-flight. When they finished, they all took a break on the shore.
"Good work today, guys."
"My my, that was quite the aerial show."
The three leapt as they turned to see a very tall male grinned unnervingly at them. (Y/N) recognized him.
"Oh you're....Jade? Right?"
He nodded. "Indeed, Jade Leech. Pleasure to make your acquaintance."
(Y/N) crossed her arms. "Didn't seem like it when you and your brother chased me and my friends across the courtyard."
His smile did not waver. "Well you were spying."
"We were not spying!"
"In any event, we didn't have a proper introduction. You're (Y/N) Stone, the famous beast tamer on campus. And these must be two of your wards."
"Yeah, these are my fliers. This is Flygon, and that's Starraptor."
Jade came closer, making the Pokémon growl untrustingly. He ignored them, circling and examining them.
"Fascinating. They're both majestic beasts."
She smiled and ran her fingers threw Starraptor's feathers. "Well, I try to keep them in the best shape they can be."
Jade's grin became a bit more unsettling. "I can only imagine the type of power you could wield with them."
"They're obviously quite powerful. I'm curious about they're abilities and how strong they are."
"I think we need to head back to campus." (Y/N) bluntly retorted before climbing onto Flygon.
"Suit yourself. If you ever find yourself in a difficult situation, come by the Monstro Lounge. I'm sure our dorm leader Azul would be happy to assist you."
"I'll keep that in mind. Come on you two."
They Pokémon took off and (Y/N) shook her head.
"And Riddle thinks Floyd is the problem child."
(Monstro Lounge)
Azul sat at a table, adjusting his glasses as he glanced at the student before him, the Leech twins on either side of him.
"Why did you ignore my requests for a meeting yesterday? Do you not recognize the position you're in?"
The student fidgeted nervously. "I didn't feel well yesterday and-,"
"Really? Lying won't help you in this situation."
"It's true! My stomach was hurting and-,"
"Jade, please help this man speak a little more honestly."
"Understood." The older twin smiled at the student who looked panicked. "Fufu, you don't need to look so scared. This won't hurt a bit. Now then, look over here....Shock the Heart."
The student shrieked as a flash occurred.
"W-what happened just now!?"
"Now, let me ask you again: why did you ignore Azul's calls yesterday?"
"'s because I don't want to be used by that scheming psycho Azul anymore! So of course I would make up a lie and say I had a stomachache, you know? What!? I just started saying what was on my mind! Ah!"
"Oh? I see that is how you really feel, is that correct?"
"Ah, how unfortunate." Azul sighed insincerely. " I am so shocked. Even after I granted your wish to uphold the benevolence of the Sea Witch. And you still call me scheming?"
"I'm sorry! You got it all wrong! That was just a-,"
"Hm, it's already too late for you to sew back the seams. Floyd, it's your turn."
The younger twin sauntered up happily. "Are you all finally done talking? Can I start squeezing now?"
The silver haired male smirked. "Yes, go right ahead. Squeeze him to your heart's content."
Floyd's grin became terrifying. "Okay!"
The student backed away slowly as Floyd approached him. "W-wait! Please just give me another chance! AAAAHHHHH!!!"
Floyd did his squeeze and the student dropped almost immediately.
Azul sighed. "Good grief, we keep ending up with worthless clients who don't take the payment deadlines seriously. When you buy, you pay. When you borrow, you return. That's just how it works."
"Yes, it's just as you said." Jade agreed.
"It would be nice if we got more decent clients this year...."
Jade chuckled. "Well, I'm looking forward to the results of the written exams, aren't you?"
"I suppose. Jade, did you handle that little task I had you do?"
The older twin bowed. "Of course. I only managed to observe 2 of the girl's monsters, but both were large, flying creatures, capable of carrying her comfortably."
Azul adjusted his glasses. "Those sound quite useful, and I can imagine how useful the other beasts would be under my control. Now, how can I entice her here?"
A week passed since the exams were administered and the group was waiting for the results. Currently, Ace was chasing Grim, who had stolen his bread, while (Y/N), Deuce, and Raichu watched on.
"Stop right there, Grim! Today is the day I'm gonna make you pay!"
"Hehe! You should've wrote your name on it!"
"You little-!"
"Good to see them getting along." (Y/N) joked as Deuce rubbed his temples.
"Geez, I'm getting tired of these guys."
"(Y/N)!" Ace yelled at her. "You're his dorm leader and a beast tamer! Control him! He just ate the sweet bread I just bought!"
"How rude that you think I stole it!" Grim argued. "I just saw it on the desk, so I took it and ate it!"
"Raichu, Psychic."
The surfing mouse fired off the attack, picking up Grim and shaking him until he looked sick.
"We do not eat food that is not ours, Grim."
Satisfied, Raichu put him down as he moaned unhappily. The orange head laughed at his misfortune.
"Ha! Serves you right, fur ball!"
Grim growled at him. "You better start running, I'm gonna use my fire magic and-,"
"Oh you sure about that? I'll just block it with my wind magic-,"
"Ah-!" They both let out before calming down.
"Ah, I think I'll hold off from using magic." Ace said nervously. "It'd be bad if we ended up breaking a window."
"Hehe," Grim laughed nervously. "Sometimes you say pretty wise things. I'll let you off easy this time. Using magic is immature anyway."
(Y/N) gave them a look. "That's suspiciously out of character."
"Chu!" Raichu chirped in agreement.
The blunette beside them nodded. "It's unusual for them to stop fighting on their own. Usually, they don't stop until a teacher or the headmaster comes and breaks them up, or Swampert beats them up."
"I just think there's no point in chasing a raccoon over some bread." Ace justified.
Grim growled. "What!? You are being so mean, you know that?"
The two sensible people rolled their eyes as they filed into class. Raichu sat snuggly on (Y/N)'s lap as Professor Crewel stepped up, holding a stack of papers.
"All right, puppies! Sit at your desks because class is now in session. First, I will be distributing your tests."
"The time has come." Deuce psyched himself up.
"Nyahaa!" Grim cheered. "The test results! Hurry u, Professor!"
(Y/N) smacked him and bowed. "I am so sorry, Professor Crewel."
"It's all right, Miss Stone. I will be passing back tests in order of attendance numbers. #1."
The boys received their test results before (Y/N).
Ace cheered. "I did it! I got a 92!"
Deuce looked ready to cry. "An 88!? I never thought the day would come where I would get over 80!"
"Look! I got an 85!" Grim showed off the paper to his dorm mate.
(Y/N) smiled. "Aw, I'm so proud of you boys, you did so well."
Ace frowned at her. "You sound so condescending for someone who still doesn't have her test back. Don't think we'll be merciful if you got a lower score."
"Outstanding work as usual, Ms. Stone" Professor Crewel praised as he handed her back a perfect score, making sure to pet Raichu as he went.
She smile innocently at Ace who grumbled. "Not a word."
Deuce didn't seem to care. "Now I don't have to worry about repeating a year!"
The Professor nodded. "You all studied very hard this time. Compared to the last quiz at least. No, it's a little suspicious, but the class average is drastically higher than usual..."
"Suspicious?" Ace asked nervously. "What do you mean?"
"Every single student in your year scored an average of 90 points in Magical Alchemy. I heard from Professor Trein that all your Magical History scores were a lot higher as well.
"What!?" They all yelled.
"I have a bad feeling about this." Ace mumbled.
"The names of the top 50 scores will be posted in the hallway." Crewel announced. "Look forward to it. "Now then, let's begin class. Open your textbooks."
Class let out, and a tidal wave of students raced to the hallway to look at the Top 50. Raichu floated above the madness as (Y/N) had to use Swampert to make sure she, Ace, and Deuce weren't trampled. Grim ran ahead.
"The Top 50! Where's my name?"
Ace leapt off Swampert to join him. "If my average is 90 or higher, I should at least be in the Top 50, right?!"
Grim read off the names. "Rank 10, 48, 49,!" He started to panic. "My name isn't on here!"
Deuce looked down dejectedly. "My name isn't here either."
"CHU!" Raichu called out.
(Y/N) titled her head. "What is it boy?"
Raichu floated over to the list and pointed out a name, her name.
"Hey, I made the Top 50!"
"How did you make the Top 50!?" Grim demanded.
"Studying a month in advance."
"H-hold on a sec." Ace interrupted. "This is a list of the top scores as well as their overall combined score, so...more than 30 students on this list got perfect scores of 500!?"
"Perfect scores!?" Deuce and Grim repeated.
"That doesn't sound possible." (Y/N) said, now very suspicious.
"More importantly, if I'm not in the Top 50, I will be violating the contract!" Grim yelped.
"...what contract?" (Y/N) growled.
"Eh? Contract?" Ace repeated. "Grim? Did you..."
"Ace, by that look on your face, you also-,"
Deuce was cut off by a flash off magic. When the light faded, the boys all had anemones sprouting on their heads.
Grim freaked out. "Fnya! What the heck is this!? What is this anemone growing on my head!?"
"Grim, did you make a contract with him too!?" Deuce shouted. "That's cheating!"
"Same goes for you, Deuce!" Ace shot back. "It's on your head too!"
"This shouldn't be hard to take off." Grim then began to yank the plant, to no avail. "Ow ow ow! I can't get it off!"
(Y/N) loomed over them furiously, her aura making them coware.
"What did you morons do?"
"I knew you guys were here." Jack suddenly greeted, coming out of nowhere as the crowd thinned. "You're so noisy. What are you all doing?"
"Hey Jack." (Y/N) said.
"Jack did you make a contra-," Deuce stopped as he didn't see an anemone on him. "No, there's no anemone on your head!"
"I never pictured you as the studious type." Ace admitted.
The wolf looked at (Y/N) in confusion. "What are they talking about? And what are those things on their heads."
She shrugged. No idea. Something about contracts."
"These are-," Grim tried to explain before the anemone suddenly began moving. "Umm, ah! What's happening!? The anemone's pulling my head!"
"Owww!" Ace cried. "It's gonna rip my head off!"
"Damn it!" Deuce yelled. "Is this what he meant by 'absolute submission'?"
The two students and the two Pokémon watched in bafflement as their friends were dragged away by the aquatic plants.
"What's going on?" Jack asked (Y/N) again. "The anemones on their heads are dragging them somewhere. What a dumb image."
(Y/N) facepalmed. "You're telling me." She then got on Swampert and gathered Raichu into her arms. "Come on, we better find out what the morons got themselves into."
"Huh? Why me? This has nothing to do with me."
"Pwease Jack?" (Y/N) and Raichu gave him the biggest puppy eyes they could muster.
Jack reared back, blushing, and unable to resist. "Uh, fine. You know you've gotten real comfortable since coming to this school. You got a lot of nerve using me like that."
She grinned innocently. "I've learned from the best. Hop on."
"It'll be quicker if we ride Swampert."
"Um..." Jack's ears flattened as he looked suspiciously at the water type.
"What? Scared?"
He growled. "Am not!"
He jumped on, a bit shakily.
(Y/N) laughed. "All right, if you say so. Swampert, after the idiots!"
The quadruped bolted in the direction the boys were dragged off to. Jack yelped and held on to (Y/N).
"Just so you know, I'm just curious what's causing all this." Jack stated. "It's not like I'm worried or anything!"
Raichu nuzzled him to break his macho persona and he petted the mouse, his tail wagging shamefully.
(Y/N) laughed. "Whatever you say, Jack."
Swampert came to a stop in the Hall of Mirrors which was crowded with students with anemones on their heads.
"The Hall of Mirrors?" Jack questioned.
(Y/N) heard the cries and complaints of the many students there.
"I was so sure I was gonna make the Top 50!"
"Damn it! We were tricked by that scheming octopus bastard!"
"There goes my school life!"
Jack's ears went back. "What? I thought it was just those three idiots, but all these people have anemones on their heads. There are 2nd and 3rd years too. They're all gathered in front of the Octavinelle Dorm mirror."
"Who's the scheming octopus bastard they're talking about?" (Y/N) asked.
Jack shrugged. "Let's go check it out."
The duo and the Pokémon snuck behind the students being dragged into the mirror and were transported to the dorm. It was entirely underwater and looked incredible.
"It's beautiful!" (Y/N) marveled.
"This is incredible!" Jack gave a huge smile. "Night Raven College is amazing!" He then coughed as he noticed (Y/N) grinned at him and blushed. "We'll be entering another dorm, so be careful and keep your guard up."
"Good plan."
To not draw as much attention, (Y/N) got Swampert back into his Pokéball and the remaining three walked in. Eventually, they found the students gathered in a large restaurant area with plenty of aquariums and a very nice atmosphere.
"There's a lot of people here." (Y/N) noted, hugging Raichu closer.
", there's more like 200 students in this place." Jack counted. "What is this place? Seems like a shop. Monstro Lounge? Where are Ace and the others?"
The lights suddenly dimmed as a silver haired, glasses wearing male took a spotlight.
"How unfortunate that all of you were unable to make the Top 50. Welcome to the Monstro Lounge. You all already know who I am, but allow me to introduce myself again. I am Azul Ashengrotto. I am the Octavinelle dorm leader as well as the manager of the cafe Monstro Lounge and, starting today, I will be your master."
"What did he just say?" Jack whispered.
"I'm gonna kill those idiots." (Y/N) growled softly.
"You all played against me and lost." Azul continued. "And according to the contract, you will all work as my servants until the day you graduate."
"Wait a second!" Ace yelled over the crowd. "This is a scam!"
"If I remember correctly, you are Ace Trapolla, a freshman. How rude of you to call this a scam. I gave you the perfect notes for the exam as stated in our contract. If you studied from them well, you should have scored at least 90 points."
"Yeah, I got a 92."
Azul smiled. "Well that's wonderful. The notes seemed to be very useful for you."
"But I didn't know you would be giving everybody those notes."
"I agree with Ace." Deuce piped up. "Even if we got the notes, it's impossible for all of us to be in the Top 50."
"If everyone got higher than 90, then you get 85 points, your rank isn't going to be that high!" Grim added.
"Have you all ever heard of the word, 'confidentiality'?" Azul asked. "'I want to get good grades, but I don't want to do the work', 'I'm just gonna relax until the day of the exam'. At the time, the idiots...ahem, I mean all of you had very different circumstances. Matters such as 'who else' and 'under what circumstances' and 'what kind of contract' are private. You can't expect me to talk about other peoples' circumstances behind their backs, do you? For I am a very honest man."
"I feel the urge to strangle rising." (Y/N) admitted bluntly to Jack.
"As you see here, on page 127 of the contract, there is a non disclosure agreement. I am just upholding the contract."
"Then, what will happen to my fire magic that I gave you as a collateral for the notes?" Grim asked.
"That's right!" A Pomefiore student spoke up. "What about my water magic!?"
"Please give me my unique magic back!" A Scarabia student pleaded.
"Oh my my, everyone." Azul said, tauntingly. "Did you all forget the terms of our contract? 'In exchange for giving you notes for you to prepare for the exam, you must give me your most prized ability. If you are able to rank in the Top 50, your magic abilities will be returned, and I will continue to give you notes for exams until you graduate. However, if you do not rank in the Top 50, you will be under my complete and absolute submission as my servant'. Isn't that correct? A lock of your hair in exchange was also part of the contract as well. In other words whether I return your magic to you or not is completely at my discretion."
"This is unbelievable!" Ace argued.
"What were you thinking!?" (Y/N) yelled.
Jack gritted his teeth. "I've been listening this whole time, but I can't stand any of you!"
The boys all backed up in fear.
"Jack? (Y/N)? What are you doing here!?" Deuce asked.
"Saving your butts before I kick em!" (Y/N) shot back at them in fury.
"Hm?" Azul glanced at the two, taking extra time to examine the now hostile Raichu. "You are..neither of you have an anemone on your head. We are currently in a staff meeting. Can unauthorized personnel escort themselves out?"
Jack growled at him. "You're gonna kick us out? We won against all of them by studying hard on our own! But all those efforts mean nothing now because of you. I am involved now!"
"Jack's fired up now." (Y/N) noted as Raichu nodded.
Grim seemed relieved. "(Y/N), Jack! Did you guys come here to save us?!"
"Don't get the wrong idea." Jack spat. "I still hate every one of you here. I'm not picking sides between those who scam and those who depend on others."
"Then why did you come here?" Ace asked.
(Y/N) raised her hand with a grin. "I bullied him into it."
Grim crossed his arms. "No, because of Jack, I realized something. We need to learn to fight for ourselves! In other words...if we take the contract we signed with Azul and destroy it, then it will be null and void, right!?"
"Ah! Now that you mention it..." another student spoke. "Even if we don't have our best magic, we can still outnumber him! Let's do it!"
"No, bad idea!" (Y/N) tried to warn them.
Azul shook his head. "Good grief. I honestly didn't want it to come to this, but you leave me no choice. Jade, Floyd. Come play with them a little bit."
The Leech brothers then appeared.
Jade bowed. "Understood."
Floyd gleamed happily. "Does this mean I can strangle these guys? Ah, yay!"
It was an all out massacre. Azul was firing all types of magic while the twins just outmuscled everyone.
Floyd frowned as he threw the last of them away. "They are all so weak. I didn't even get to strangle any of them."
"They are like a school of helpless little fish, aren't they?" Azul stated.
Floyd looked at (Y/N). "Hey shrimpy, do you have the big, mean looking water monster with you? I think he might be more fun to play with."
"Not on your life, Leech." She hissed.
Ace flinched as he picked himself up. "Azul can use all that magic? That isn't fair!"
"Is the golden contract he's holding allowing him to use all of your magic?" Jack asked.
Deuce frowned. "Damn it, I didn't realize I relied on my magic so much."
Ace rubbed his head. "And without his fire magic, Grim is just a normal raccoon..."
"I am not a raccoon." The monster moaned before fainting.
"You all signed this 'Golden Contraft'." Azul stated. "None of you will be able to revoke this official document. No matter how much magic you use, you won't be able to leave a scratch on this contract. Fufufu. The second those anemones sprouted from your heads, you had no other choice than to follow my orders. Shall I have you start cleaning the lounge first! Then food preparations. Now then, get to work!"
"Are you serious!?" Ace groaned.
"Jade. Floyd. Please train our new staff."
"Yes." They both responded.
Azul then looked at the outsiders. "You are Jack Howl from Savanclaw and (Y/N) Stone from Ramshackle, correct? Please escort yourself out soon. Next time, you are more than welcome to visit the lounge, I will kindly welcome you."
Jack growled as Floyd smirked at them.
"Aw, can't they play more, Azul? The mouse is so cute, I just want to squeeze it!"
Floyd snatched up Raichu and began to squeeze, much to his annoyance. As Raichu gritted his teeth and began sparking, (Y/N) crossed her arms, apathetic to what was about to happen.
"I wouldn't do that if I were you."
"Eh? Why? What could it-,"
Floyd was cut off as Raichu fired off a Thunderbolt, charring the wild twin's clothes. Floyd coughed before collapsing as Raichu got loose and began angrily yapping at him. (Y/N) gathered her Pokémon in her arms and glanced at Azul.
"I'm not apologizing for him being dumb enough to aggravate an electric type."
Azul nervously adjusted his glasses. "Er, right."
"Come on Jack, we better regroup."
The two headed out to try and come up with a plan to save their friends.

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