Cardrian Monsters

Notes: I hope this'll be fun.

Opening: Together As One-James Paget

The crowd cheered as the two competitors stood facing each other.

"Each combatant is down to their last Cardrian," the announcer crowed. "On the one side, we have Marcus with his Volpan. And on the other side, five-time World Champion, ARTHUR STARR! Fighting with his Silverwolf."

The announcer paused as the two Cardrians clashed together.

"This time though, it may look like Arthur's streak has come to an end. I tell you, this man has had a heck of a run. He is the most popular, and best, Cardrian Master in the world. There are fan clubs in just about every city celebrating this man's skills. Kids wanna be him, adults wanna beat him. It doesn't get any better than this."

The two Cardrians clashed again and Silverwolf was knocked to the side and regressed into a smaller version of himself.

"I've won!" Marcus crowed. "I beat him! I beat Arthur Starr!"

"Not yet," Arthur replied. "I've been experimenting with a new transformation."

The crowd went silent as everyone stared in shock.

"Did he say a new transformation?!" the announcer cried. "I know there's Base, Advanced, and Elite. But is there really a level beyond those?"

Arthur held up his card reader and swiped Silvercub's card. "Bio-Advance!"

Arthur and Silvercub began to glow. But then the glow turned dark. "No!" came Arthur's voice. "Something is wrong! This isn't right! Aaaaaggghhhhhhh!"

There was a huge flash, and when the light cleared, all that was left in the ring was Marcus, a Zume card, and a Silvercub card.

Chapter One: Happy Birthday, Max

11 years later...

Two opponents faced each other in an alley of the city. They both had card readers on their wrists and had cards in their hands.

The one furthest from the street had black hair that stuck out on the right side of his head, and in the back he kept it in a medium length ponytail; he had two scars on the right side of his face. He wore a black jacket which was torn thrice on the left shoulder, a red band with the Cardrian's logo on it on the left sleeve of his jacket, a torn dark green shirt that showed the lower part of his abs, and khaki pants with torn knees. The logo was a diamond with the silhouette of a card with a white circle in the middle.

The guy closest to the road had dyed burgundy hair that went to the tip of his ears. He wore a dress shirt and open vest and a loose tie and dark blue jeans with hightops.

Their Cardrians were out as they were in the middle of a match.

The Cardrian of the guy who was furthest from the road looked like a small black dragon made of wind. While the other guy's looked like a giant pidgeon, except it was black with red streaks and green eyes.

"Birdro!" the one near the road called with a wicked gleam in his eyes. "Finish this punk off!"

The other boy only grinned. "Perfect." He began sliding a card. "Transform activate!"

"What?!" the other boy exclaimed. "I didn't know your Cardrian could transform!"

"Believe it, punk!" the other boy said, his Cardrian beginning to glow. "I am the City Champion for a reason, you know? Because I'm the best!"

When the glow ceased, the boy's Cardrian looked the same, just slightly bigger and with another head. "Tycune! Attack!" Tycune created a wind vortex around the other boy's Cardrian and it returned to its card. "Good job, Tycune! Return!" Tycune shrunk down to his base form and then returned to the card.

"I didn't know you were the City Champ," the boy closest to the road said. "If I had known that-"

"Pathetic," came a voice from above them. They looked up to see a very beautiful girl with long, brown hair and green eyes. She was wearing a green school uniform with a red bow ribbon in front. It ended in a short skirt. "Truly pathetic. Both of you." She looked at the boy near the road. "What level the Cardrian is should not matter. Base forms can defeat advanced forms." She then looked at the boy furthest from the road. "And the fact you had to transform your Cardrian to defeat such a weak opponent tells me all I need to know of your skills. Neither of you is a threat."

"Oh yeah!" they both exclaimed, summoning their Cardrians. "Why don't you back that up?!"

"Silly boys. Very well." She slid her metallic Cardrian card through the card reader. "Bowacune! Summon!" Her Cardrian looked like a big brown dog with white stripes and electricity flowing around it. "Attack." It howled a vortex of lightning at the two Cardrians and returning them to their cards. "As you said, know your opponent first. I'm the National Champion. Second best in the World Tournament." Her Cardrian returned to its card form as the two boys looked on in shock. "At this rate, you two will never make it past the first round." With that, she walked off.

"Happy Birthday, Joseph!" the lady called to her son.

"I told you to call me Max! Sounds tougher," said the young boy. He wore denim shorts and a tanktop, with tennis shoes, and two open-fingered gloves. He had silver hair and blue eyes.

"Well happy 14th birthday, Joseph Maxwell Starr, my little tough guy," his mother said. "I've got your gift right here," his mother said, pulling out a bulky present.

"Oboy, oboy, oboy! Is it the Cardrian starter set I've been wanting?" She only looked down at her feet with a disappointed look in her eyes as the boy tore into the gift. He pulled out a book and a board game. "A book on how to be a Cardrian Master and Cardrian Monsters the Board Game?" he asked, slightly disappointed.

"You know, son," she began, "I'm barely making much money working as a waitress. Mommy has to pay for everything including the bills. I had to save up for months to be able to afford this for you. I went to look at a starter Cardrian kit but $600 is slightly out of our price range right now."

Tears rolled down his eyes as he pushed himself away from the table. "It's not fair," he said. "Everyone else at school has one or is getting one and I'm not. I don't like being left out!" With that he ran out the front door.

"Honey!" his mother called out, reaching for him and headed for the door.

Max ran and ran through the city. His vision blurred by the tears. He wiped the tears away and stopped running. He noticed he was near a local owned hobby store. He walked in.

"Hello," called an elderly man. "What can I do for you on this fine day?"

"Hey, Mr. Fitzgerald," he said.

"Ah, Max is that you?" the old man said, looking up. "Isn't today your birthday? You look a little sad."

"I had wanted a Cardrian starter kit, but my mom couldn't afford one."

"Is that right?" he said. "Follow me." They began walking down a hallway. "Your dad set something up years ago. Seems he knew you might come here on your birthday and asked me a little favor." They walked into a backroom. On a table near the back was a gift with Max's name on it. "He asked me to hold onto one for you and paid it off. Said I was to give it to you on your 14th birthday. I did one better. I designed one myself."

Max tore open the present. Inside was a box with the words Cardrian Starter Kit on it. He gasped. "Is this really mine?"

"Of course," the elderly man said smiling. "Now the creature is quite special. I had to pull a lot of strings for it, considering your father's disappearance and all, but it's one of a kind. It was your father's. So take very good care of it."

Max pulled out the card reader with 5 cards. "Remember, your Cardrian can't transform until it gains enough experience."

"How will I know when it's ready?"

"The card you summoned it out of will begin to glow. Now, look further inside. There should be a Cardrian in there."

Taped to the bottom of the box, was a metallic card. Max pulled it off of the box. "Silvercub," he read. "Light Attribute. Wait. Those stats can't be right. They're higher than normal base forms. 10 across the board. 10 Strength, 10 Defense, 10 Speed, 10 Power, and 10 Health."

"That's because Legendary Cardrians are slightly more powerful than normal."

Max looked up. "You mean…? Silvercub…? He's…?"

"Like I said, he's one of a kind. And he's all yours."

Max hugged the old man. "Thankyou, thankyou, thankyou."

"You're welcome, child. Now please quit before you pop out my back."

Max strapped the card reader to his arm and walked towards the front door. "I'll take good care of it." He walked out the door and right into an older kid. It was the kid from the alleyway who had been furthest from the road.

"Well, well, a new player," he crowed. "I do need an easy win to get me out of the doldrums from my earlier defeat. Time to play, kid. The name's Wolf by the way. And me and my Cardrian are about to eat you alive." He got his card reader ready.

Closing: The Hero Within-James Paget