You woke up to the feeling of Dia slowly languishing against you, a mischievous look in her eyes as her hands kept touching your body. You could only arch an eyebrow as her ministrations were ever so slowly encouraging you to take action upon the eager nurse. Glancing at the clock, you realised she'd woken you early, and you could guess why.
You gave her every minute of your attention until a quiet beeping sound next to your bed told you she needed to get to work. "Best clean up, sir." She said with a dazzling smile as you nudged her into the shower.
Her cleaning efforts were thorough.
Once practically squeaky clean, you went to dress, yet the nurse insisted to help you, her hands touching you all over as if in a mix of close examination and encouragement, a part of you was well aware she was putting extra effort into showing her appreciation, and it made you feel wild. You ended up with her against the wall, her legs wrapped around your waist.
You'd never felt this energetic before, and a part of you attributed it to her attitude, she desired you openly in a way no one had really done before. You could think back to your previous relationships and experiences, and it didn't quite compare.
To say nothing that Dia was... it was odd when you made that comparison, but It somehow reminded you of Monica, that she was just one big sex-magnet and you were a lump of iron. The feeling that kept welling within you was that she was made for you. You knew it was just an exaggeration from an over-eager imagination, but it felt right to hold her against your arms in a sense that didn't quite match with what you expected out of someone you'd met not even a week ago.
Was there more to the bond than only how it affected the monstergirl? Maybe it was a two-way street? How could you even know if there was a bond to begin with?
"Good luck with the test, sir." Dia kissed your chin, the first time she did so without waiting for your approval or instruction as she had throughout most of last night.
Maybe she didn't count it as a kiss unless it was on the lips.
You took the chance to kiss her fully, making her squirm and blush against you. "What should I expect?"
"Just a lot of questions you won't know how to answer, and others that you should." She said cheerfully. "And then an interview with a psychic, just standard things."
"Psychic?" You had to pause, the word quite quickly rang some alarms. "As in... a mind reader?"
"You do not have anything like that where you come from, sir?"
"Hm... I could understand why it might feel uncomfortable." She grimaced. "I'd say they're as afraid of you as you are of them, but it would be a lie." Dia shuddered. "They often enjoy making others nervous or uncomfortable."
"Well, no need to meet the psychic, already there." You scratched the back of your head. "Like... would she just take one look at me and know my every thought or something?"
"I doubt it, sir, even strong psychics cannot freely look past surface thoughts without having to struggle their way in." Dia commented. "No psychic has the power to read the memories of a person without them realising it... well, except the snugglebunny, but that's an exception."
"Erm... best not dwell on it too much, sir." She moved to rush you to the door. "No snugglebunnies in our small community to worry about. Besides, sir is a good person, I'm sure they'll pass you through without much issue." She leaned in, hugging you from behind. "Sir is a great Master candidate."
It gave you a bit of a pleasant shudder.
"Thanks." You muttered, opening the door. And yet, as you were about to turn to leave, her hand lingered in your chest, you could feel her smile waver slightly. "Yes?"
"It's been very fun, sir." She replied with a heavy sigh. "Would it be too much to ask if tonight after the..." She blushed furiously now. "...the date... that you spend the night at my place?"
"Where is this coming from?" You couldn't avoid asking.
"Sir, today is the last day as a patient, and I have faith you will pass the test and be eligible to become a tamer. Once you've made your decision, I doubt you will be staying in town, and... I belong to the hospital."
You look at her and feel an odd tightness in your chest, you paused, thinking. Property, right, monstergirls were property.
"Is it possible to buy you from the hospital?"
A moment of hesitation, she nodded slowly. "You would need to convince Doctor Hale to allow the transaction, but even then, you... would you have me?"
"Only if you'd want me to." You quickly point out. "Having a healer seems like a smart choice for anything that might involve risks, no?"
Her face lit up yet the sweetness degraded into hesitation again. "I-I I think I would just... would sir have enough?"
Both of you knew the answer to that, you were broke, not enough even for a chocolate bar much less a nurse. Unless the economy was really fucked up and chocolate was rarer than... ok, maybe not something you'd want to find out and feel depressed over. "No " You said with a weary sigh, scratching your head. "But something to keep in mind, asking for a loan might be possible... I'll have to check. It's not like I'd be in a rush to hit the road or anything."
She nodded and sighed wistfully, shaking her head, and then smiling as if there had never been anything wrong to begin with. "You should go sir, wouldn't want to be late to the examination."
"I'll be seeing you tonight regardless." You replied, certain that at least that much was true, you kissed her forehead... huh, this was the first time you'd done that.
There was going to be plenty of firsts, you hoped.
Dia gushed, covering her face and rushing out. You stepped right after her, realising she'd actually sprinted and vanished from sight entirely.
That made you chuckle a little. That was one fast nurse.
You looked around before finding your way towards the entrance. There you found a man wearing a police uniform and Mr Gabriel talking to one another. Next to both of them and clutching at Mr Gabriel's arm, you saw a mouse monstergirl, and though it took you a very long second to recognise her, you quickly realized it was Tessa.
Except she didn't have so much as a scratch on her, not even a scar. Her ears were whole, her body looked nourished, she was... you marvelled at the fact she looked to be in pristine condition. The meter-forty tall thing was looking far calmer than when back in the woods, and healthier.
The healing capabilities were truly miraculous.
The police officer noticed you.
"Oh, good day sir." The man in uniform greeted. In the corner of your eye, you could see two women wearing uniform standing at the sides of the entrance door, monstergirls no doubt. The man kept talking. "I am officer Pablo, I'm here to escort you and Mr Gabriel to the precinct for the test and interview."
"And the others?"
"They went on ahead." Mr Gabriel spoke up.
"Yes." officer Pablo nodded. "Would you need anything before heading out? We can wait for you here."
"I'm good, let's go." You nodded, better get this done with. "Morning Mr Gabriel." You added as you glanced at the old man. "How are things with Katherine?"
"Thorny." He replied, seeming to deflate from the usual sternness. Tessa reached to pull his hand and kissed it softly, looking into his eyes with those big blue ones. The gesture brought a smile to the man's leathery hard expression. "But she's her own woman and she has to make her own choices."
"I guess that's life." You shrugged a little, then gestured at Tessa. "How is she? She seems practically new." At your gesture, she'd shrank away, using the man as a cover.
"I'm as surprised as you are." Mr Gabriel replied, caressing the girl's blond hair and drawing a happy chirp from her. "They put her into one of those balls, and ten hours later out she came without so much as a scar."
"How come they let you keep her?" You asked, curious.
"Temporary Pet Owner license... or something like that. She's considered a harmless breed." He took out a little card from his pocket that had his picture on it.
Looking at the card, you note the two women start walking at either side of your group, you couldn't tell what they were or what they could do, but you realised the back of your mind was paying keen attention to their every move. "How does that work?" You tried to keep the conversation focused.
"I can answer that." Pablo pipped up with a friendly smile. "Under extreme situations, the government can grant special licenses so as to avoid those people later on getting into trouble due to some technicality like having used a monstergirl that saved dozens of lives even though they didn't have the permits to own her."
A very very very very long pause followed the silence of Pablo having said what he had. Wait, what? You probably needed to rewind and re-hear it all more slowly. You wish you had your phone with you to record this. Wait. Where WERE the rest of your possessions? Sure, you hadn't missed them much, but they must've ended up somewhere, right? Maybe there was a drawer in your room you hadn't checked...
"And would there happen to be a temporary equivalent for something like tamer grade? Such as if, say, you'd happen to have tamed a purrsian while not being a tamer so as to save everyone's life?" You ask the very definitely not specifically important question. Mr Gabriel glanced at you with a smirk as he seemed to have deduced why you were asking.
"Oh, definitely." Pablo nodded amicably. "It's a bit more complicated though since it would be necessary to undergo a stricter interrogation process regarding the details of the event. Under lie-detection spells too."
"I... see..." You mutter, rubbing your chin. "And is it retroactive?"
"It would have to be, since I doubt they'd do the interrogation before the emergency happened." The officer chuckled.
And quite suddenly you realized that Major Huge's biggest tool to convince you to join the hunters had not been Monica herself but instead hiding a tiny little tidbit of information from you. You felt like growling, God damn it.
You wondered why he'd do this, taking a very long moment to try and find what his angle had been. Maybe... from his perspective, a monstergirl more or a monstergirl less wouldn't be worth that much to negotiate over. So 'giving her away as a favor' for you would be quite the bargain if in exchange he got to recruit someone he found to have some worth or at least potential for it.
You grinned ever so innocently.
"I take it you plan on getting her back?" Gabriel asked.
"Yup." You reply calmly.
Gabriel looked at you for a very long second, then shook his head. "I hope you know what you're getting into." Pablo looked at him, and then at you. "He's the crazy bastard that tamed the feral purrsian your partners were whispering about."
The officer looked shocked, though the two women didn't seem to outwardly react. Pablo looked at you with a long look. "I thought you'd be younger." Gabriel laughed at that, and you ignored the sting, instead just shrugging.
"So... a breeder?" You glanced at the old man.
"As far as I've been told, it's farming... with monstergirls." He replied with a weary sigh. "I don't really know what other option would do my bones any good, I'll probably find a ranch somewhere and lend a hand and be content with that."
"What of... getting back?" You asked.
"I'm too old to be running around looking for something that may not be there." Gabriel replied calmly. "If someone else finds the way, I will gladly take it, if not, then I'll just find something to be glad about over here."
A wise approach to things, you figured, or a lazy one. Or both. "So you and Tessa..." You teased, to which he glanced at you.
"I just never took you for the type."
"I never took you for the type to do the things you did either. But here we are." He replied.
His words were found to be rather humorous apparently, Pablo chuckled a little as he led the way and up into the precinct. With only a minor hello to the receptionist, Pablo and the two women guided you through the building and into a small green room. There you found Tomas seated and waiting. "You will be called one at a time. Mr Gabriel, you will be expected to recall your monstergirl before starting the test." The officer instructed. "If you need anything, don't hesitate to knock on the door, my girls will be there to help." He left.
A pause, you glanced at the door. Sure, 'help'. You could only feel like sighing inside.
"Hello." Tomas greeted, looking slightly sullen as his head practically hung from his shoulders. "The others already went inside."
"Everything alright?" You asked the young man, and he shook his head slowly. "Want to talk about it?"
He shook it again. Gabriel looked at him for a long moment. "It's Katherine?"
"Still don't want to talk about it?"
Another shake of the head.
You sighed, scratching your head and sitting down, wondering what else you could talk about. "Find anything worth mentioning?"
Tomas remained quiet for a very long moment, then spoke with a weary sigh. "This is Earth."
"What?" Both you and Gabriel asked.
"It's..." A sigh, sullen, clearly this was not the priority of things he wanted to think of. "This world... it's not some weird version of pokemon like I'd thought at first, it's Earth." The young man spoke sullenly. "Their history matches ours until around the 90's, then Sukebe showed up, and... it's been three hundred years since."
This made Mr Gabriel frown slightly. "Three hundred years?"
A careful nod. "The new nations are what came out of what had once been our countries." Tomas continued unprompted. "Sukebe went mad and declared war on the world, he lost in the end, but governments fell, a plague annihilated almost everyone, and all of... this... is what came out of that." A little hesitation as he squirmed. "And what Sukebe himself brought... this... there's so much that doesn't follow pokemon at all, just one look at the dex, and most breeds aren't related at all, it's as if..."
You frowned. "As if?"
"As if this Sukebe went into the pokemon world and took some of the things into THIS world. Everywhere you look there's small hints at other things, at other worlds." He explained. "The capture-spheres are practically identical, the healing cycles, miracles, and a handful of monstergirl breeds are similar even if most aren't." A pause, a deep breath. "So many of the monstergirls have bits and pieces of... so many things." His eyes unfocused. "And then there's the legendaries."
You and Gabriel glance at each other not sure how to take this information. "Legendaries?"
"In the game, they were gods. Here, the thing they call legendaries are monstergirls capable of wiping cities." His tone had a ghastly fear underneath. "They're so powerful they erased entire countries from the map. Venezuela? It's a giant crater now. Australia looks like it was a piece of glass that got smashed up. Most of Europe is gone, and America as a whole is just... pieces."
"Wait, where are we then?" Gabriel frowned.
"Somewhere American mid-west... what's left of it." A dejected sigh and a shake of the head. "Everything's so fucked up."
"And we're in a world where humanity has had to endure this kind of thing for three hundred years." You spoke, somewhere in your voice there's awe as well as horror.
"That explains a lot." Mr Gabriel only nodded.
An uncomfortable silence followed, you took the time to think over this new information, tying it with the other things you'd learnt. 90's Earth and then Sukebe... you could almost laugh at the thought of it, Bill Clinton having to handle an army of monstergirls? The idea was... it almost made you laugh out loud.
The door opened and Tomas called over.
"So what you were thinking about?" Mr Gabriel looked at you, or rather, at the almost smile.
"Just... how fucked up everything went because of some madman." You said. "Three hundred years ago."
"Well, last I checked there were no cat-eared murder machines and world-ending plagues in the 90's, so I'll consider we got off lightly." He said, his hand gently laying on Tessa's shoulder.
You quietly nodded and kept to yourself.
Eventually, Mr Gabriel was called over. "C'mon Tessa, into the ball you go." Mr Gabriel spoke, drawing out a capture-spheres from his pocket, and recalling the mouse once she'd kissed his cheek.
"Don't make it weird." He replied, to which you could only shrug.
"Be seeing you." And he was gone, and you were alone. A long minute passed, then another, and then one more.
You were staring at the light green roof of the room and wondering how long it'd take before it was your turn when the door opened. "Mr Richard?"
"That'd be me." You stood up, following her as she led you into another room.
The smell of cigarette smoke was clear the moment you stepped through the door. "Please take a seat, sir." The owner of the voice called out from her spot next to the window.
You moved towards the only other chair and sat down, trying to wonder whether this was the psychic monstergirl Dia had mentioned. You couldn't readily see anything too out of the ordinary... well, except her chest.
Was that a trend amongst monstergirls? You had to figure the Sukebe guy who'd made them had certain proclivities...
"I am now officially starting the recording of this meeting. My name is Irene, owned by officer Clementine, serial number: 21351-D." She looked your way, and you felt the faintest sense of something happening in your mind, but you couldn't tell what it was since it vanished quicker than you could focus on it. "Current time is 10:04, and interviewee is a one outlander ID: 43F named Richard A."
A long drag from her cigarette. "Legally, I am required to tell you that I am an Alaka-wham, a highly proficient psychic monstergirl and that it is required of me to read your thoughts throughout this meeting. Do you agree to these terms?"
You hesitated for a second.
"No, you can't really disagree, more like voice disagreement, then I'd have to talk to my superior who'd come here with a lawyer and things would get complicated. The likely outcome being that things would eventually end up with this exact scenario except there wouldn't be a question over whether you agree or not." She spoke taking a drag out of her smoke. "So, do you agree to the psychic interrogation?"
"Yes." You speak out.
A nod. "First, please state your name, year of birth, place of birth, and nationality before coming to this world."
Your answer was succinct and honest, keeping to the minimal details necessary to cover for her request.
"Very well." She didn't nod as she instead shifted her attention to read something, a book? You couldn't read the title from the angle. "Under the consideration that you have only had exposure to monstergirls for less than a month, please elaborate your thoughts regarding who and what they are, and how they should be treated."
You almost gawked, wasn't that a bit too heavy a question to start things off? You began considering the option, but the monstergirl spoke up before you could say anything. "The interviewee considers monstergirls as people, ones that are highly dangerous but equally capable. He considers that though they might be fun to dominate in the bedroom, outside of it is a realm they should have greater independence to make their own decisions. With a caveat that ferals are no better than animals at the very least until tamed."
You gawked, blinking.
"Note, interviewee considers the privacy of thought enough of a priority to feel irritation at having his thoughts explained out loud for the sake of the record." With a gesture of her hand, a pen jumped to the air and began writing down something on the notepad that was next to her. "Next question." She turned the page of the book she read, without physically touching it, her eyes not even looking at you. "Given the option to choose between saving your life or saving Monica's, the feral purrsian you'd tamed after reaching this world, which would you choose?"
You begin to open your mouth, but she interrupted. "The interviewee would attempt to save himself three out of four times." She turned the page. "Next question: If selling Tessa, a titmouse the interviewee doesn't own, was a viable way to keep everyone fed for another day or two, would you?"
Again you open your mouth, but she talked before you could even say a word. "Interviewee clearly sees the titmouse as a possession, and strongly feels aberration of stealing that which belongs to someone he values. He also considers that a titmouse should be worth more than two days of food for a small group of humans."
There's a cocksure smirk of amusement as she says this. "Next question: If you had the ability to turn either Tomas or Katherine into a monstergirl at the click of a button, to then have the potential to force yourself onto them, bond, all in order to save everyone's life, would you use this button? Who would you turn if you didn't have an alternative to use it?"
Wait, what? Turn people into monstergirls? "Wh-?"
"Interviewee shows very high emotional distress over the question." She speaks barely an instant before you can even voice the question. "Aversion over the matter, in order of negative response, being first the forceful turning into a monstergirl, second rape, and third gender reassignment. In the off chance of having absolutely no way to avoid to make the choice, he would choose Katherine."
Anger started rising inside you as she continued what you could only describe as increasingly sadistic interrogation.
"Interviewee also questions the sanity of the interviewer and those who designed this test." She added without missing a beat, her disregard of you absolute as she kept her eyes on her book. "Next question: If you were starving to death and had no food sources, would you rather cannibalize Monica or Dia, the female nurse that works in the Bark medical center whom you've been fucking all night?"
You don't even try to open your mouth, you're glaring at her as your knuckled whitened against the armrest. "Interviewee would rather strangle me than answer the question. However, he would kill the purrsian, as he feels deep down that she is an existential threat to his continued survival. There are clear signs of trauma and as town's psychic counsellor it is my recommendation he does not take her as a starter monstergirl and she instead be put through a level 5 and sold to-."
"ENOUGH!" Your hands slammed the desk with a bang, you were standing, breathing heavily, glaring, feeling your blood practically boiling.
The monstergirl took a long drag of her cigarette, raising her eyes from her book for the first time since she'd addressed you upon entering the room, her expression bored. "Subject has a powerful aversion to engaging in physical violence purely out of light instigation and without survival instincts being threatened. Physical capabilities match those of a human without blood-gifts, mental acuity degrades with heightened emotion. Interviewee matches the profile of a pure human."
A pause, her eyes meeting you with that unwavering unflappable calm detachment.
"It is advised you sit down so we may continue."
Grinding your teeth, you take a long moment before you begin to sit down, taking a good deep breath to calm down. She kept her eyes on you ten long silent seconds before she turned to her book, raising her voice once more. "Under the ideal circumstances that you could keep both Monica and Dia, would you consider settling down as a teacher?"
The question caught you off guard, you blinked, taking a moment as you frown. You half expect her to start telling what you were thinking out loud but she didn't, merely turning the page of her book as she appeared to be waiting for you. After a minute, you talk. "Maybe, I don't know, I just want to see what else this world has to offer."
Irene nodded. "Interviewee sees teaching as a means to an end more than a passion or an objective to be achieved or strived for." That was all she opted to add in, waiting until she turned the page to ask the next question. "Would you kill for money?"
With a frown, your lips thinned. "Depends on what I'm killing." You spoke honestly before properly considering it and shrugging.
"Interviewee shows aversion of death but comprehension and acceptance of it as a necessary result to certain circumstances. It is worth noting interviewee shows certain signs of sociopathy that might have emerged out of psychological trauma." She added her little piece of commentary. "Would you do something you'd consider morally correct even if fully aware that thousands of innocents would die because of it?"
"It wouldn't be that morally correct, then?" You muttered with dejection, crossing your arms.
"Subject shows a willingness to attempt peaceful solutions and approaches to the problem if given the chance rather than lean towards slaughter." She said calmly. "Last question, tits or ass."
Your head feels slight whiplash at the question, but the answer rings loudly within your head before you can try to even hide it.
You try to mentally add some context to the answer purely out of embarrassment, but it's too late as she gives you a cocksure smirk. "Congratulations Mr Rick, you are an official Sunrise citizen... once you sign some papers." She said. "I will waive the required mandatory test for a tamer position since you only really need to know in what hole baby's come out of and which one has teeth to be considered smart enough to be a tamer."
"Though you will be a tamer once everything's signed, you will still need to get a physical in the medical center as well as have some samples taken." She added in a droll tone. "You will be handed your dex and explained the details regarding how getting a starter then. Whether you choose to become a Hunter or not, this step would still be necessary."
"Not applying to be a tamer, psychic, remember?" She tapped her temple. "But being a tamer is still the minimum requirement to taking any other position, and one you'll want to get regardless." She finished the sentence for you. "Regarding the retroactive temporary emergency tamer license, you would need to request the interrogation under lie-detection magic from the chief directly, you will be able to find him taking a right turn once you leave this room." A series of papers were pulled from various drawers, they floated down, setting on the table. "Any questions?"
"Did you enjoy this?" You can't help asking.
And then you see her shoot you the first smile since meeting her. "Pureblooded humans are refreshing to read since everyone else has developed some minimum level of psychic resistance over generations of monstergirl blood being added in. It's like not having to swipe at cobwebs whenever entering a room."
"I... see." You couldn't say you were too happy about that. A slight sigh. "Just... how does being a psychic...?"
She cocked an eyebrow, and made a wave with her hand, and then you... you understood. Your mind and hers were... they were one, for a split second, only an instant, and yet... yet you saw yourself as she saw you. It was... it was like trying to describe a colour that hadn't existed for you except during that brief glimpse. Your mind, it was chaos, layers upon layers of streaming light, thoughts, ideas, memories, everything mingling with everything else in bigger and smaller and greater ways and... then there was you, you were just a single tiny lightbulb.
Bright, warm, with a thousand tiny colours that grew and shifted the closer one looked. But still, only one lightbulb compared to the sea of stars within and around her mind.
"Huh, never had anyone react that way." Her word made you blink away the fireworks, taking a moment to readjust to being yourself. "Yes, like that, that would be the answer you were looking for."
An odd sense of gratefulness passed through you, though also overwhelming awe at the fact that her every second of existence had her in contact with many more minds than just your own, processing them all, every single one, at the same time. "I... thank you." You spoke honestly and slightly surprised at that feeling. "I guess I'll... head over to the chief's office once I'm done reading these."
"Take your time." She said, pressing a button on a device you hadn't seen her carrying, some sort of phone? "Good luck with the chief."
"Shouldn't you... uh... be here in case I have doubts about this?"
"You won't have any you'd need me to answer." She spoke with confidence, standing up, and with a trail of floating items behind her, she left.
You made sure to take a very very long time to very very carefully read every line in the documents. You had to agree with her assessment that you didn't feel like asking her any questions.
The documents were contracts stating things you'd expect out of something made for someone becoming a citizen to a new country. Oaths to follow the law, acknowledgements Sunrise's government and those working for it as representatives, and a bunch of legalese that said the same things except with four pages of text. There were no papers regarding the position as a tamer, but by the looks of it, you'd likely get to take a look at those at the medical center.
Once you'd checked and re-checked everything and that there weren't things that were too fishy (there was that one line of "in service of the government.", but by the looks of it it seemed more of a patriotic angle than anything else), and with the papers in hand, you followed Irene's instruction and sought out the "chief".