Love is War
Chapter 2: Battle Stations
Sunday; October 7th
I didn't know what that horrible sound was, but right now, it was keeping me from sleeping. I poked my head out from underneath the covers and glared at my alarm clock. The glowing lights read 4:57. I shouldn't be awake for another two hours at least, but if it wasn't my alarm, then what the hell was the beeping sound?
I sat up in bed, rubbing the sleep out of my eyes. Chuchu, my Pikachu, had her head burrowed beneath a pillow at the foot of my bed. Apparently she didn't like the beeping either. Blue was sitting in the middle of our room, a flashlight in her mouth as she tinkered with beakers and jars of different liquid. Behind her was a large pile of water guns and buckets. The microwave that was usually in the first floor kitchen was now plugged into the wall and sitting on Blue's desk. The word END was where the timer usually took up residence, beeping every few seconds to let the world know it had finished heating whatever was in its stomach.
Blue looked up, the flashlight blinding my vision. "Oi Aye," she spoke through her teeth. "Son't dind de." Blue returned her attention back to the beakers and vials. She carefully poured a blue liquid into a beaker that had a yellowish liquid. She swirled the contents gently before holding it up to the flashlight for inspection.
I blinked at her once more to make sure I wasn't dreaming before falling back onto my bed. I pulled the covers over my eyes and hoped that whatever she had in plan didn't involve me.
I woke to sunlight this time; sitting up in bed I was wide awake. My clock read 7:24 this time, and Blue was nowhere to be seen. The beakers, water guns, and microwave had disappeared, but there was a black stain on the ceiling. There was no way we would be able to cover that up from the dorm mistress.
Chuchu snored gently from the foot of my bed, now on top of the pillow. I quietly got out of bed, careful to not disturb her, and left the room. I'm sure my hair was a mess, but I pushed right past the bathroom and instead headed for the stairs. Today was Sunday, and I didn't feel like grooming myself just to cross the island for some breakfast at the cafeteria.
Finally, I had reached the small kitchen on the first floor and began making myself hot chocolate. The dorm was usually quiet in the mornings, considering most of the girls liked to stay up late and gossip, but I was the only one who seemed to wake with the sun. I almost always had the entire place to myself Sunday mornings, and I liked it this way.
I blew on the hot liquid before taking a sip. Some people need coffee in the morning. I always preferred a chocolaty sugar rush instead.
I looked towards the open kitchen door. That was Crystal's voice. And she sounded like she was about to murder someone. What could Blue have done to get her so angry? Usually Gold was the only one that could get her this whipped up.
Hesitantly, I poked my head out the kitchen door. If Crystal was going to murder someone, I didn't want it to be me. The blue haired girl was stomping down the hallways towards me, her hands balled up into fists.
"You!" She pointed a finger at me.
"Yes you. Where's that vixen you have as a roommate?"
I shrugged. "She wasn't in our room when I woke up."
Crystal frowned and crossed her arms, obviously not pleased with my answer. "Great." She muttered.
"Um…" I took another drink of my coco before continuing. "What did Blue do?"
Crystal looked at me like I had just asked what two plus two was. "What did Blue do?" she repeated, her voice rising almost to hysteria. "She bet my meal tickets that's what! I don't need to bet them! I already have straight A's in every class!" She threw her hands up in desperation before turning on me again. "She bet yours too."
"W-What?" I cried, almost dropping my mug.
Meals here were decided by grades and we were given tickets at the beginning of each month based on our grades from the previous month. The higher your grade, the better the food was that you could get. But there was one acceptation to that rule. We could gamble with them. If a student with C-class meal tickets managed to beat an A-class meal ticket holder in a challenge of their choice, the C-class holder would eat A-class meals for the week while the A-class holder would eat F-class meals as punishment for losing. However, since there was nothing to be gained for the A-class if they won, duels were mostly played out by the rest of the ticket holders.
As far as I know, Crystal, Platina and myself were the only ones who had A-class tickets in the girls dorm. Not many people thought it was worth the effort to work for anything above a cheeseburger.
"Yeah, she bet all of ours," she muttered angrily. "Everyone from our group that is."
"Hello girls!" Crystal and I turned as Blue strode confidently into the dorm, Sapphire and Lyra trailing behind her.
"You!" Crystal began her angry finger-pointing act again and marched right up to Blue. "Why did you bet our meal tickets?" She demanded. "They were service chocolate chip pancakes this morning!" Crystal was now inches from Blue's face. "Chocolate. Chip. Pancakes."
"Whoa there." Blue pushed Crystal away gently with a large binder she was holding. "Sorry, but I needed more fighters and I wasn't just gonna force some girls I didn't know into our war. That would just be rude."
"And betting our tickets without our permission isn't?"
Blue shrugged. "You say potato, I say potato."
Crystal looked dumbstruck at Blue's comment. I didn't blame her, I had no idea how that tied in with the conversation. Lyra placed a hand on her sister's shoulder. "Don't worry," she smiled, "Blue's got a plan."
Crystal frowned. "Then do you care to enlighten me?"
"Of course!" Blue pushed past Crystal and myself and made her way to the stairs. "If you'll follow me, ladies."
Blue was really starting to get on my nerves. First she promises to help me get my revenge on Gold and fails, and now she goes and bets my meal tickets without permission. School would be so much stress less if Blue and Gold weren't here.
"I'm pretty smart…" I muttered to myself. "I think I can get away with double homicide."
Yellow must have overheard me because the small blond vacated her seat next to me faster than you could blink. Right now I didn't care too much on what Yellow thought of me. Since I was already in this mess, I might as well dive in full force and save my tickets. "So what exactly is your plan?"
Blue stopped flipping pages in the binder for a moment to smile at me. "Stains."
"…" I blinked at her, not sure I heard her correctly. "Stains."
"Yep!" Blue resumed her flipping and I sighed in defeat.
There was no cracking the shell that was Blue. You had to let her open up first. I let myself fall onto the couch, taking over Yellow's spot. We were in the basement right now. It was pretty much the biggest lounge in the dorm. Several computers formed a mini lab along one wall while the other played host to the biggest television set I had ever seen. The seating ranged from bean bags to office chairs like they had just been pulled from a bunch of garage sales. There were hair brushes and other personal items scattered about as well, since everyone in the dorm liked to use this area as their second bedroom sometimes.
My stomach growled, only reminding me of my hunger. I moaned and held my stomach as it decided to eat itself.
"Here," I looked up and found that a chocolate bar being held in front of my face. I snatched it out of the air and before it had a chance to disappear. "Thanks, um," I sat up to face whoever had handed me the candy bar.
"The name's Berlitz." Platina announced herself. "Platina Berlitz." She pulled out a small water gun and held it in both hands. Her face remained emotionless but I could see the stars dancing around her head. She was obviously enjoying herself as she spun the small gun in her hand expertly.
"Wait a minute." I turned to Blue now. "Don't tell me Platina here signed up willingly to help out with you plan."
"She's been reading a lot of spy novels." Blue looked at me like her statement explained everything. I just got even more confused. "Ah-ha! Found it!" Blue tore what looked like a pamphlet out of the binder and snapped it shut before handing it to Sapphire. "Think you can get this back without the teachers noticing?"
Sapphire saluted Blue before taking the binder. "Yes ma'am!"
Blue must have anticipated I was going to question her again, because she turned to me as soon as Sapphire left. "These," she placed the pamphlet on the table gently, like it could fade away at any second, "are the blueprints for the dormitories. And these are going to help us win."
I seized my chance to get a hold of the logic Blue was trying to spout. "Do you mind explaining what we're trying to win?"
Blue blinked at me. "You mean you haven't figured it out? We're challenging the boys to a water gun fight."
I consider myself a pretty lax guy. I like to lounge around and battle with my Pokémon just like any other guy, and I always try to find the positive side of any situation. However, I failed to see the positive side of getting dragged out of bed by Mr. Surge. I had almost fallen out of bed when his combat boot kicked open the door to our dorm room.
Green, my roommate, had his arms crossed across his chest and his head hung, fast asleep. His brown hair was still a mess and we were both still in our pajamas (Green always said my Pikachu print was childish, but I like them). After he dropped us off in one of the lounges, he said was to wait here while he got the others. Who were the others?
Ruby, a boy two years younger than me, walked into the room with a cheerful look on his face. The little bit of hair I could see poking out from under his hat was still wet, meaning he had already gotten the chance to shower. A sleepy looking Emerald walked in after him, rubbing sleep out of his eyes. Amazingly his hair was already in its croissant shape, even though he looked like he had just rolled out of bed.
"Morning." I greeted them and the two took seats on a couch opposite of myself and Green. Emerald laid his head down on the armrest and immediately fell asleep.
"Any idea what he wants us for?" Ruby asked.
"Who, Mr. Surge?"
"Yeah," Ruby brought his hand up to his chin and looked up at the ceiling like he was thinking. "I was about to head to breakfast when he walked by dragging Emerald behind him. He tossed the midget to me and said to bring him here."
I shrugged, "He kicked our door open this morning and dragged us here. I'd leave but…"
"He'd make us do laps." Ruby finished for me.
I laughed nervously. Mr. Surge believed that physical punishment was the only way to go, and nobody ever enjoyed one of his 'light exercises.'
"Don't you want to hear one of our jokes Mr. Surge?" A hyper voice carried in through the open door as a group approached us.
"Yeah, yeah." A lax and quieter voice spoke up. "We've been working on them for ages."
Mr. Surge's voice came next. "Um, maybe another time boys." A second later, Mr. Surge walked into the room with Diamond and Pearl right behind him, pestering the dorm supervisor to hear one of their routines. Those two were an odd pair. On the first day of classes this year, a rumor had gone around saying two freshmen had introduced themselves to the class by throwing pies at each other. If I hadn't seen them trying out the same routine at lunch later that day, I wouldn't have believed it. The only person who seemed to laugh at their jokes was that girl named Platina that always hung out with Blue and Yellow.
"I'll hear one!" Gold burst into the room, dragging a disgruntled looking Silver with him.
Diamond and Pearl's eyes lit up and they spun on the spot. The two draped their arms around each other's shoulders. "Speaking of Pokémon~!" They cried in unison.
Mr. Surge quickly cut their act short with blows to their head. "You'll have to save your act for later," he glared down at them. Diamond and Pearl quickly muttered apologies and took their seats on the floor, not bothering to occupy a vacant couch. With a quick look at Gold, Mr. Surge managed to get us all seated. He coughed to clear his throat, "I was unable to locate Wally, but this should be fine enough."
"Um, sir." Ruby interrupted. "What did you want us all for?"
"You've been challenged to a war!" Mr. Surge grinned ear-to-ear.
"I decline." Green said quickly. I jumped slightly at his voice. I didn't even realize he had woken up. "I've already got A-class meal tickets. I don't need to bet them on anything."
"Oh don't be that way!" Mr. Surge smiled at Green. "No one has issued a war for quite a while. It'll be good practice for you. Besides, I already signed you all up!"
Green looked like a cinderblock had just been dropped on his foot.
Since it looked like Green was out of commission, I deiced to ask the next question. "Who were we challenged by?"
Mr. Surge pulled out a piece of notebook paper and squinted at it. "The declaration was made by Mrs. Blue Kurukku." I didn't have to be looking at him to tell that Green's eyebrow was twitching with annoyance. As he muttered under his breath about Blue being a pesky woman, Surge continued, "This will be an all or nothing war. Whoever wins will get A-Class meal tickets for the month," Surge's eyes gleamed. "However, the losers will have F-Class meal tickets for a month! How about those odds?"
"Then we better give an A-Class performance!" Pearl grinned.
I swear, you could hear a pin drop.
After clearing his throat, Mr. Surge continued, "Now, since the teams are currently six to nine, in the name of fairness you'll have to cut out three people. But pick carefully, because even if you're one of the three sitting out you're still betting your tickets!"
I could tell our advisor was enjoying this too much.
"I'll be back with your weapons soon enough. Make sure you've picked your team before I get back!"
"Water guns?" Crystal looked at me like I had just said we were gonna leap off the roof. Which is weird since we did that yesterday.
"Yep!" I smiled at the girls assembled. "Since Plan A was a failure," I ignored Crystal's huff of annoyance, "We're moving onto Plan B. Death! By Super Soaker."
Yellow leaned into the table, looking over the blueprints that Blue had placed there. "So we're still planning revenge on Gold?"
"It's not just Gold anymore," I corrected my innocent roommate, "it's every single one of those horny idiots."
Crystal huffed and fell back onto the couch again. "She's gone off the deep end."
I ignored her insubordination.
"All right girls, gather round. It's wartime."
Green gave us the greatest motivational speech of all time. I'm just saying, I got chills during the speeches in the Lord of the Rings movies, but Green made my blood go cold. "I just wanna say if I lose my A-Class meal tickets, you'll all be sleeping with the Magikarp's."
Red laughed nervously, but was silenced by the glare Green gave him. The man was dead serious.
Ha, dead. I crack myself up.
"Don't worry, you've got us!" Pearl boasted, slapping his hand against his chest.
"We'll mop up the competition!" Diamond chuckled, referencing the mop he had snatched from the cleaning supplies closet.
"No offense guys, but I don't trust a single one of you," Green said. His voice was void of emotion, "Which is why I'm going to be captain."
"Why do you get to be captain?" I objected. "I've played enough video games to run ranks around you."
I swear, Green's face was gonna freeze into the scowl.
"Because I'm your senior. And Mr. Surge already made me captain."
Green ignored me. "I've had the unfortunate of knowing Blue since day one. If I know her like I know her, she probably already has a few dirty tricks up her sleeve. So," Green smiled for probably the first time in his life, "we're gonna come up with a few tricks of our own."
Normally a smile should lighten up a person's face, maybe even make them look a tiny bit beautiful. The only thing Green's smile lit up was how insane he probably was right now.
"Mr. Surge already submitted the lists of the teams to the headmaster," Green walked over to the whiteboard in the room. Funny, I had never noticed the lounges had those things. He scribbled names across white, pink for the girls and blue for us. "It will be Blue, Yellow, Crystal, Lyra, Sapphire, and Platina versus myself, Gold, Silver, Ruby, Emerald, and Pearl."
"Why not all of us?" Diamond asked. He looked rather disappointed that he wouldn't be using the mop.
"Mr. Surge already said it would be unsportsmanlike to outnumber the girls." Green capped the marker, "But that just means it's too our advantage. The war doesn't start until noon, but that doesn't mean we can't do a little recon."
"Recon?" I asked.
Green nodded. "You, Diamond, and Wally were left out of the war, but your meal tickets are still at risk. While the rest of us are confined to the dorm, you three will work on infiltration and sabotage.
"Red," Green continued, "you can use your girlfriend walk in the front door. Diamond,"
"Whoa, whoa, whoa," I interjected. "Girlfriend? What the hell are you talking about?"
All eyes turned on me, and I felt my face heat up slightly. Arceus, why did I have to be the center of attention now?
Green blinked at me, "Aren't you dating Yellow?"
My heart skipped a beat. "No!" Was it that obvious?
"Really?" Gold raised an eyebrow. "I totally thought you two were boning between classes."
Several thoughts ran through my mind, half on them on how to scar the younger boy for life. The other half are thoughts best kept to myself. I tried to come up with a witty response, but my brain failed me when I noticed everyone else in the room nodding in agreement with Gold. I sank into the couch, wishing it would swallow me whole.
Green continued, and I only half listened. He drew two circles around Blue and Sapphire's names on the whiteboard. "Diamond, I want you to track down Sapphire and Blue. Right now they pose the biggest threat."
"Not to interrupt," Ruby interrupted, "but if someone can play decoy for me, I think I know how to handle Sapphire."
"We should also watch out for Crystal." Gold warned, "She prides herself on her grades and I doubt she enjoyed getting denied breakfast this morning."
Green nodded and drew a line from Ruby's name to Sapphire's as well as adding a circle around Crystal's name. Next he connected his name to Blue's, "I'll handle Blue myself. No offense, but I don't think any one of you will be able to take her out."
"I'll take Crystal," Gold offered.
"I can get Platina then," Pearl put in.
Green only shook his head. "Pearl, I doubt you'll be able to pull the trigger when faced with Platina. And Gold, the moment Crystal sees you she'll go into a murderous rage and you know it." He turned back to the board and drew the final lines, "Emerald, I want you to take care of Crystal. Gold, you've got Platina, and Pearl will take out Yellow."
"So that leaves me with Lyra?" Silver sighed.
I think that may have been the first time I heard Silver talk. I didn't bother listening to any more of the conversation and decided that my time would be better spent taking a shower. The others didn't seem to even notice me as they talked battle strategy. Maybe Yellow was taking a shower right now.
I stopped mid-step. I did not just imaging Yellow, naked, in the shower, water running down her body…
I imagine I got a few curious looks as I banged my head against the wall in embarrassment.
Why the hell am I doing this? Oh right, it's because I don't want to eat road kill for a month. But that brought up conflicting emotions in my mind. If I act selfishly and help Green with his plan then I'll condemn Yellow to nothing but F-Class meals for a month. She just seems so delicate if she even so much as caught a whiff of that trash she'd keel over.
I let my head fall in despair, unable to make up my mind. I should be the gentleman and forfeit my stomach to the mercy of the cafeteria, but…
Ring! Ring! Ring!
My Pokégear snapped me out of my thoughts and I dug the thing screaming out of my pocket. "Hello?"
Great, what did Gold want? "What's up? Did Green come up with a new plan?"
"Naw, I just thought you might need a little motivation for the sabotage plan."
"…what do you mean by motivation?"
"It's nothing like dirty pics or anything!" Gold shouted hastily into my ear. "Unless of course, that's what you need. Cus I know a guy."
I felt a vein in my forehead bulge in annoyance. "I'm hanging up."
"But it's about Yellow!"
I had half a mind to follow through with my threat. However, curiosity kills the cat. "What is it?"
Gold gave a sigh of relief. "Well you see, if we manage to pull through this, you can use you're A-Class meal tickets to your advantage. With Yellow and all her girlfriends stuck with F-Class tickets, you can offer some of your meals to her. That way you get to spend time with her and you'll be a savior in her eyes!"
I hung up and my legs began carrying me to the girls' dormitory slightly faster. Maybe I could be a little selfish.
I can't believe how hot it is here. It's October already, but it still feels like it's the middle of July. I sat under the shade of an umbrella I had set up on the top of the boys' dorm, my own private little paradise on this land away from society. Not even the muscle brained Surge knew the combination for the stairwell that led up here. I was the only one who knew.
"I knew I'd find you up here."
Well, maybe there was one exception.
I smiled and Emerald who sat down next to me and continued to fan myself. "Well aren't you one for playing hooky," I said with a slight smile. "Isn't the match about to start?"
Emerald shrugged and helped himself to one of the drinks in my cooler. "I don't really care for useless battle. Win or lose, I don't really suffer."
"What, do your taste buds not work Emmy?" I hid the smirk on my lips behind my folding fan. Emerald always got worked up whenever I called him those pet names.
Emerald's face however was void of emotion as he cast a glare my way. "You know what I'm talking about, Mitsuru."
The joy in our conversation seemed to dissipate faster than the morning dew. "Oh, so you do remember. I was under the impression that you were just another one of the senseless idiots."
Emerald finished his drink, crushing the can in his grip. "There are more here at the school than you think Wally." He tossed the can over the edge of the roof, "You just have to watch a bit more carefully."
"Well, in that case, why don't you introd-"
"I know about your little group," Emerald interrupted me. "But you can forget it. I don't plan on joining any time soon. Ruby, Sapphire, and the others are my precious friends. You can do whatever you wish to this school and the headmaster, just leave them out of it."
Emerald stood up to leave and I watched him hungrily. There was something…alluring about this new side to Emerald. "Is that a threat?"
The blond ignored me and headed back inside. I just couldn't help but smile at him as he left. At the very least, I wouldn't be bored this year. "I don't make any promises Emerald," I called after him. "After all, all's fair in love and war!"
Kaith: Yep, another chapter up! I had originally planned to get the whole war thing in one chapter, but I got a review in another one of my stories asking for another LisW chapter, so instead of stalling I'm splitting the prep and action for y'all!The characters may seem a bit OCish, especially Wally and Emerald, but I think you'll appreciate them as the story continues, and more of the full plot is revealed.
Please review and let me know what you think!