[Alice Academy][fanfic] A Clockwork Tangerine, Chapter 1.

By Henry J. Cobb

Actually I'm flattered that 8-faces of the moon-8 copied this story over to .net s 4946605 1 A-Clockwork-Tangerine but I was working on it first, for example: pipermail ffml 2007-October

The Gakuen Alice characters and situations are the creation of Higuchi Tachibana and this parody is not intended to cause any damage to that property.

This fanfic follows episode eight of the anime (Ironically replacing episode nine, but I couldn't resist the title) and includes some elements from later episodes, with my own unsubtle twists.

Chapter one: Shake.

My name's Natsume Hyuuga and I'm ten years old. I attend a school for children who are gifted with unusual abilities; I wasn't given a choice and my gift is too valuable for them to give up. I wear the stupid school uniform they assign me, but I don't wear the silly ribbon necktie or the special star they awarded me when they decided I was the top elementary student.

There's another student in my homeroom class who doesn't wear a star, but that's because she's the only student in the class who isn't worth even one ordinary star in the rating system they impose on us. In the two years I've been a prisoner of Alice Academy I have never seen them clamp down on a new student so quickly and so throughly for so little reason. What makes Mikan Sakura so special to them that they would apply the ultimate sanction of assigning her as my partner?

All her alice seems to do is protect her from other peoples' alices. In some ways it's an impressive power, I can't burn her and our language teacher Mr. Narumi can't control her mind, but other students with less powerful alices have read her mind and suspended her in mid air like a pinata without difficulty. It's like it's sitting there and watching and only nullifying alices that it considers to be grave threats to her.

They can't control her with their alices so they've clamped down with the social restrictions and the worst part is that it's working because she cares about the supid rules they impose on us. They drove her into making an escape attempt and then locked her in her room when she made it outside the gate. The only reason she got that far is that she talked three students who ought to know better into helping her.

And now this morning they've finally let her attend class again. She's been crying again, but you wouldn't know it by looking at her big brown eyes. She even forced a smile when she saw her childhood friend Hotaru Imai in the class, but Hotaru kept reading her book and made no reply.

They have made a mistake. They have handed me a key and shown me how to turn it. That's going to cost them everything. "So your little escape plan failed, didn't it miss no-star? Mr. Narumi was sent to fetch you and you were so grateful that you slept with him and called him Daddy."

"What! How did you know? It wasn't like that." Mikan blushed redder than the auburn hair she kept tied up in twin pigtails.

"If you want to keep secrets then you'd best learn to control your alice. Now shut up Stupid and come sit here," I patted the one always empty seat in the classroom, the one to my left.

"Why should I sit next to a jerk like you?"

"Because you agreed to be my partner. Because you promised to do everything I said."

"Hmph!"

"She promised to do everything we told her to."

"I'm the one who won that dodge ball game." One look was all it took to silence the rest of the class. Nobody likes to burn.

Ruka Nogi and the bunny he always carried watched as Mikan sat on the other side of me.

Sorry buddy, but you're too sweet on her, helping her escape and everything. You can't be tough enough for what has to be done.

Sumire Shoda's green eyes followed Mikan and her lips tightened as if she was about to bare her fangs. This was the first time I had ever asked a girl to sit at my table and Mikan wasn't even a member of Sumire's unoffical Natsume-Ruka fangirls club.

Hotaru continued to read her book, but I could see in the tension in her shoulders that she knew that something was up, but wasn't sure about what to do about it yet.

The teachers were surprised at the new configuration with me in the classroom and Mikan next to me, but none of them dared complain, except Jinno. "Miss Sakura, why are you not in your seat?" He pointed his antenna wand at her. With that he's able to direct his lightning bolts to the far corners of the classroom.

"She's sitting next to her partner. Has she been reassigned?"

"Very well Mr. Hyuuga, but anything she does from now on will be marked against your record as well."

Like I care.

At the lunch bell Mikan ran to follow Hotaru out the door.

"No-star."

"What? it's lunchtime."

"Shut up and follow me."

Ruka glanced back a few times, but he walked beside me as I slowly made my way to the cafeteria with Mikan three steps behind.

A hush settled over the students as I took my seat at the top student table.

"No-star, go grab your lunch then sit here." I pointed to the seat across the table from me.

The cafeteria staff scrambled to prepare the prescribed top student lunch for me as Mika went to wait at the back of the line.

My lunch had just been delivered when Mikan returned. She glanced hungrily at my princely spread as she picked at her simple bowl of rice.

"You won't have the strength for your training on just that. Open up." I picked up a slice of prime steak with my chopsticks and fed it to her then a mushroom for myself.

"That's like an indirect kiss!" Sumire rushed over. "Is she your girlfriend?"

"No, she's my pet." I put down my chopsticks and patted Mika on the head. "Doesn't she look just like a puppy dog? That's why I feed her table scraps."

"That is unforgivable!"

I didn't look at Sumire as she walked back to her own lunch with her usual catlike grace, but instead caught Hotaru's dark purple eyes for a moment before she looked down at the book she was reading during lunch.

Mikan missed this exchange as she was watching Sumire. "Why? Why was she so insulted when you called me a dog?"

"I guess you haven't seen her alice yet. Now shut up and let me enjoy my lunch."

Mikan had her best meal to date as a prisoner of the Academy with the items I fed her. She enjoyed it so much that she didn't even seem to notice Sumire, Hotaru and Ruka's furtive glances.

After classes Mikan again made a rush for the door.

"No-star."

"What? I have to do my no-star chores."

"Those can wait a few minutes. Follow me." I lead her out to the soccer field. "Stand there." I counted off ten paces and turned to face her. "This is your training for today. All you have to do is put your hand on mine." I held out my right hand with a torch sized flame on my palm.

"Natsume..."

"What's the matter? Won't your alice protect you? Isn't that all it's good for, protecting a stupid no-star?"

Mikan slowly walked up and waited a few seconds then put her hand on top of mine. "Ow!" She jerked her hand back and blew on her palm.

"Are you burned? Show my your hand."

"No, not really, it just stung a bit."

"OK, we're done for now. Go do your no-star chores."

Dinner followed the same procedure as lunch. Mikan had her simple bowl of rice plus whatever I chose to hand feed her, until she looked up and saw Ruka staring at her. Then she ran off and I didn't stop her.

I took a walk through the woods after dinner and Ruka followed.

"Natsume, why are you doing this? What's this game you're playing?"

"It's no game. Or maybe it's a very dangerous game. I don't think you should be seen with me or Mikan again. We're not safe to be around."

"I don't know you anymore." Ruka shook his head and walked off.

That's it buddy, go play with your animal friends. It's safer for you and me.

Mikan was sitting under the exact tree I had predicted. One glance was all it took to send her running, no doubt to Hotaru. It made no difference. Hotaru was doomed the moment Mikan followed her to this prison.

"Yes, what are you playing at?" Persona's voice drifted in from the darkness behind me.

"Leave me be and find out, or reassign her if you're so frightened of her."

"She is nothing to fear, but if it makes you better behaved like this, you can keep your pet. Do whatever you like with her."

"Whatever." I walked back to my room and that night in my sleep remembered flames engulfed me as always.