Author's Note: Thank you to my editor and my friend AdmiralJellybeans for helping me with this story. I will aim to update on a weekly basis and constructive criticism is more than welcome. I hope you all enjoy.
Guzma stared at the flier in his hands as he slowly lied down in his musty, old bed. He felt the smooth, glossy paper between his fingers as he stared tiredly at what was essentially his last chance.
He had returned to his childhood home after agreeing to, no, being forced to go on a trip around Alola with Melemele Island's long time Kahuna, Hala. The old man normally got on Guzma's nerves more than anything else, with his attempts to mentor him as a child often coming across as babying. He didn't think he needed a mentor; however, Hala proved to be quite the guide when it came to life. Guzma even found himself, on the rare occasion, having fun spending time with the old man. With the Kahuna's guidance he was able to realize a lot of things about himself and for the first time in years he was absolutely determined to make something of his life.
To leave an impact on this world was one of his greatest desires. Though he had already achieved this through Team Skull, the thought of being remembered by the entire world as nothing but the boss of a criminal gang left a sour taste in his mouth. He wanted to be respected. But respect, as he recently came to realize, could not be forced upon others. Respect had to be earned. He could thank Hala for that; the old bastard's lectures were too influential for his own good.
Guzma now knew that he needed to start small, so after the trip he returned to the most insignificant, small-time place he could think of: Melemele Island. This is where he grew up, the quietest and most uneventful island in the entire Alola Region. He made it a point to stay away from this place for many years, as a stew of both nostalgic and highly distressing memories resurfaced at every mention of it. But he decided to grit his teeth and bear it, for he was better than that now.
At first he had only visited his childhood home a few times since Team Skull disbanded, as this was one of the last places in the entire world he wanted to see again; hence, he made sure that his father was definitely at work before visiting. Guzma had spoken to his mother for the first time in eight years that first evening. Yet even though she was brought to tears after seeing him again, after everything that had happened he could not help but feel that her apologies rang hollow. He decided to continue to try and visit for her sake. Though that didn't last too long; during the third visit the region champion visited and battled with him. Almost immediately afterwards Hala dragged him away for a little over a month.
He stood just before the front porch; it was late evening and he knew for sure that his father was home at this hour. This knowledge had managed to put him in one hell of a bitter mood even before he arrived. Guzma slinked through the front door and then, realizing he had been spotted, quickly stormed through the living area and into his room. He shut the door with a loud slam before either of his parents even had the chance to open their mouths. After all, he hadn't spoken to his father in eight years and was determined to keep it that way for a long, long time. The only thing he desired in that moment then was a warm bed. He did not want to sleep on the streets that night.
His room had lost that familiar scent after being absent for so long, and instead he inhaled the depressing stench of loneliness and regret. It looked like his mom kept the room clean. His trophies caught his eye, all that were bronze except for one lonely silver positioned by his bedside. The more he looked at them the angrier he grew. Years of his skills never being truly acknowledged began to burn in his mind's eye. He looked away, for the last thing he wanted to do tonight was break something. Instead his eyes fell on his large plasma screen TV; he could see his reflection clearly. He was wearing his usual getup aside from his Team Skull necklace. Guzma calmed himself down and smiled a little; damn did he look good, he always looked good, though the sight of just a plain white shirt with no bling to accompany it left something to be desired. His old Wii-U was below the TV exactly where he left it-he had a fun time with it and was quite the avid gamer in his teenage years. He even managed to teach his beloved Wimpod, now a bold and intimidating Golisopod, to play video games with him. The thought of gaming; however, had long lost its charm-he could probably pawn the console and games for a pretty good price.
Guzma turned and unceremoniously threw his duffel bag on his old bed with a thump, the sound directing him to his prized stereo at the bed's foot. He remembered saving up for it himself, and he even payed for each CD out of his own pocket. He let out a small pleased sigh when he caught sight of it. It was exactly how he left it. It was the one thing he regretted not being able to take with him when he ran away all those years ago, because it was simply too large to carry. He ran his fingers over its smooth black surface,recalling how he danced alone in his room as a teen. Surely he looked like an absolute fool back then, but his prowess at the art of hip hop dancing had greatly improved since.
He flinched at the sound of a loud knock at the door, followed by a shout. He quickly locked it and flopped down onto his bed. This would pass pretty soon. He buried his head in his pillow to drown out the room was where he stayed until the morning but, like most other nights, sleep failed to find him.
Guzma spent the next day in Hau'oli city trying to find a job. He was searching for any kind of job. Ok that was a lie, as some things were simply beneath him. The entire process annoyed him; people should have been coming to him whilst feeling nothing less than proud to give him a position! But, as was obvious to him, this was not the case. Though he tried to be respectful and charming towards anyone he came across, during that week the presence of fear and rejection in their voices was obvious. He was a known felon, an extremely infamous one at that. Despite this he did not regret running away and forming Team Skull, for some of the best experiences of his life were with that team and its members. He wouldn't trade that for the world.
After a week of searching he slowly began to give up hope. Though Guzma was an extremely determined person, Hau'oli was a small city and any opportunities that were available steadily begun to run out. But then one morning he decided to check the notice board in the city hall and there he noticed a new flier. Guzma's eyes widened and he immediately snatched it from the board and sprinted towards his house.
Now he was lying on his bed with the flier gripped between his fingers. On it was an ad for a teaching position at the Pokemon school that he attended as a kid, specifically for teaching children how to battle and raise Pokemon. The interview was at 6:00pm the following night. It was perfect for him; he did not have much productive life skills but raising Pokemon to be strong was a specialty of his. In his mind nobody was more deserving of this role than him. Yet with his recent streak of failures what would stop the school board from rejecting him too? In fact, they had every right to. But this was his last chance, and like everything else he set his mind to he was going to give this opportunity everything he had.
The next evening Guzma stood in front of the school entranceway. The sun was beginning to set and the street was lonely and cold. He had worn his usual getup as he had nothing else to wear that even looked remotely good. Although he was pretty sure that for an interview he looked far from presentable, he thought it be best that he was authentic rather than lying from the start. Speaking of lying he could not bear to lie on his hand-written resume. So he listed every second and third place position that he earned in competitions throughout his life, despite how much it pained him to do so.
He took a deep breath and closed his eyes. At this moment he had nothing left to lose. After all, everything that he worked so hard to establish had crumbled right in front of him. With a determined look in his eyes he entered the school grounds. It was time to start from the beginning.