Almia U

 

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Chapter 1

“Kahuna Hala’s and Brawly’s Hariyama seem incredibly evenly matched as they grapple fiercely with one anoth- oh?! OH?! Is the Alolan Haryiama LIFTING ITS OPPONENT UP?! LADIES AND GENT-”

The room went silent as Artur closed the tab.  His hand tousled his hair as he constantly refreshed his email. Nothing.

He pulled his phone from his pocket, his sweaty grip almost letting it fall to the floor, but his reaction time was thankfully short. Again, nothing, as if checking his phone would make the wait any less shorter.

His feet maneuvered dexterously across the clothes, books, and notebooks scattered haphazardly on the floor. The teen sprung onto his bed, exhaling deeply into his Pyukumuku pillow. He lay there, his heart desperately attempting to burst out of his chest like one of the many, many harmed Magikarp his parents routinely nursed back to health.

A notification buzz awoke him from his reverie.

“EGU is OUT”

Who sent the message? Artur didn’t notice nor did he particularly care; his fingers danced across his phone, opening an email that just popped up in the notifications bar. Its topic read plainly yet foreboding: “Your Ever Grande University decision is enclosed within.”

His heart pounded incessantly, trying to burst its way out of his chest. He clicked the link in the body of the email, which led to the.

“I am very sorry to let you know that we are currently unable to offer you admission to Ever Grande University. Please know this does not reflect on the quality of your application or you as a student. Thank you for applying to our institution, and we wish you the best in all your future endeavors.”

His heart sank into the depths of the globe. He restrained himself from throwing his phone and placed it on his dresser, breathing deeply.

Perry, Artur’s older brother, knocked twice on the door, poking his head in cautiously. He was taller than his sibling and had a harsher face, with thicker eyebrows and sharper cheek and chin bones. “Hey, I heard EGU came out… You ok, Art?”

Perry got a faceful of Totodile plush. 

"Please, go away." A frown scrawled itself across his face.

"All right. If you're hungry, dinner's in a bit. Come down if you want."

"Okay."

Perry walked up to his younger brother, having a bit more trouble traversing the mess, comforting him with a hug. Art recoiled. "You'll go where you need to be." 

Art pushed his brother away. "Easy for you to say," he scoffed between tears.

Perry abruptly crossed his arms over his chest, trying his best to obscure the Ever Grande U logo on his shirt. 

"Ah, sorry about that. I expected... happier news." He took off his shirt and threw it into the mess. "Better?"

"Uh. Kinda? I dunno." He laughed awkwardly, thumbing his eyes to wipe the tears away. 

"Come on. You better eat something. Mom made a kickass Berry fricassee tonight."

With a reluctant nod and a pat on the back, the duo walked past framed pictures of a beaming family posing with a variety of aquatic Pokemon on their way to the dining room. 

The circle dinner table was stacked high with files and books, as usual. The two began clearing it a little, revealing the its light brown surface.

"Clear the table, guys! Dinner's coming in piping hot!" 

Their mother came in, teeth clenched, wincing while holding the pan with her bare hands. She gingerly placed it in the middle of the table while her husband came in with plates and cups. A Politoed folllowed close behind with a pitcher of Nomelade. 

His father thanked the Pokemon without turning around. "Thanks, Rene! A big help, as usual."

"Poli!" he replied. 

After the Water type set the pitcher, and all five of them sat down, Art broke the news. 

"Oh, honey, you'll be all right," his mom commented. "You applied to another school, though! You'll be fine wherever you go."

"Yeah, but it's Almia. Don't get me wrong, great school in its own regard, but I have issues with it. Almia's a Ranger school, mostly... so I dunno what that'll do to my prospects of being picked up by a pro Trainer team. I think it's everything but a Trainer school." He played with his food as he spoke, lifting Berry chunks and letting them splash back into the sauce. 

"Ah, but that's where you're wrong, kiddo!" his father chirped, raising a finger. "Almia's a great place to study! Don't sleep on 'em; just because they're no big shot Ever Grande or Indigo doesn't mean you can't count 'em out. All U-Almians I know became accomplished professionals-"

"Yeah, but how many of those became top-ranked Trainers?" Art retorted.

"Oh. Right. That was what you were talking about." 

"Probably not the best of times to sound like a brochure, Santos," suggested Art's mom. 

Art got up and picked up his plate. "I'll finish up in my room if you don't mind. I got a bit to mull over."

Once in his room, he sat down heavily on his bed. His slow munching was interrupted by Rene's sudden appearance. 

He cracked a smile. "If it isn't the resident troublemaker. What'd you want?" 

The Politoed plopped himself down next to him, curling his vibrant green body against the teen. "Agh. Seems I'm trapped." Rene let out a deep, croaky purr, content with his prisoner. 

Art played with Rene's hair. "I'll miss you out there, Rene. You're the best 'Toed ever." 

 

 

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