(Author's Note.) It is highly recommended you read Creature Grid: Elemental Clash before reading either this or Creature Grid II: Soul Savior. The rules are properly explained there, although they will be explained again here, there are new mechanics in this series that were not previously included, or were explained better in the older series. If you don't like card games, or card game related battles, I'm warning you now, this series, along with every 'Creature Grid' series, revolves around it. You have this opportunity to stop reading, I won't blame you.
Humans and Creatures...we co-exist and depend on one another throughout our lives. They come in so many different shapes and sizes. Not to mention they have the emotions and logic to think and communicate like us. They're humanity's best friend, right next to the dog. However, the best part about Creatures to some people...is clashing. Clashing has become a way of life to settle disputes, where humans and their Creature partners do battle with each other. Nowhere in the world is it more popular than the world-renowned game, Creatures ONLINE. Everyone around the world can enter that world, and either play through the game by themselves, with their friends, or for the more competitive ones, show their strength in arenas to climb the ranks. It sounds like a great thing, doesn't it? The problem is that we can't have nice things...because some people can't help themselves but to try and ruin it. This is my story. My name...
"Altercation Draco, finish this!"
A young, slightly tan girl with brown hair called, a statue of a dragon breaking out into the form of a real brown dragon, while it blasted streams of flames at an opposing Creature, which appeared to be a simple knight, as it was destroyed.
"Clasher 2, Jason has lost! This means the winner of this Grandier tournament is Clasher user 'Aiza'!"
An announcer AI declared, the girl cheering, fist-bumping the air.
She called, before noticing a HUD showing that she levelled up.
"Alright! Finally level 300! Hey, you!"
The girl then called to the defeated Jason, who was about to leave.
"That was a great fight! Let's clash again sometime!"
She offered, Jason seeming to smile a bit, nodding, before leaving, as the girl then noticed the clock, and flinched.
"Whoa! It's already so late...! I'd better log out."
She said out loud, pushing a button and disappearing into data.
At that, the young girl opened her eyes, and took off the headset she was wearing, sighing in satisfaction on her bed.
"Well, Aisha. That's every tournament in the game. Looks like you're the top dog in clashing now...Heh, it's all thanks to you, Draco."
Aisha said, her card flashing and becoming a small brown dragon, who nodded.
"I disagree, your skills as a clasher were what brought us victory."
They said, Aisha checking her phone, and the leaderboards.
"There we go...'Aiza', top in all the leaderboards. We've really come so far! Our hard work paid off."
She said, as the phone started ringing, slightly surprising her as she dropped the phone on her face, Draco trying not to laugh, while Aisha picked the phone back up and picked up the call.
She asked, as the voice was a gruff, deep one.
"Aisha Verde. Username; Aiza."
They said, Aisha standing up off her bed immediately in surprise.
"Who are you? How do you know my name AND Creatures ONLINE User?"
She asked, the voice speaking again.
"We're an organization that deals with cyber crimes. We've noticed your proficiency in the game of Creatures ONLINE. On the other hand, the people here are poor clashers, and can't defy the rules of the game. We need your help, a competent clasher like yourself should be more than up for the task."
They said, Aisha looking confused.
"Huh? Wait, you expect me to just help some government or police just because you're asking me? I'm just a 15 year old girl, are you sure you have the right person? I know I'm pretty good at clashing, but...Is a kid really the best option?"
She asked, the voice responding.
"Of course. However, we don't plan to make you help us for free. You will be compensated considerably, and we've already received the OK from your school to do this."
They said, Aisha looking slightly surprised.
"Compensated for clashing..? I mean, that sounds great and all...and the school's okay with it?"
She asked, looking around.
"...Alright, where do I drop by, and when? I'll at least hear you out."
Aisha said, the voice seeming satisfied.
"Very well, Your phone will be texted the information, show up after you've finished with school tomorrow."
They said, before hanging up without giving Aisha a chance to respond.
"Huh...well, that was weird. Although if they're legit, they'll probably have badges or something. Either way, they're even offering to pay for my help, so...What's the worst that could happen? Oh, but it's getting really late. I'd better get to bed."
She said, realizing, Draco already curled up into a ball and sleeping.
The next day, Aisha found herself smiling and looking through her deck during the lunch break, only for a girl's voice to speak up.
"You still obsessing over those cards?"
She asked, Aisha looking over to see a black-haired girl who clearly didn't have regard for dress code in terms of the uniform, as she sat down in front of her.
"Oh, hey Rachael. Of course I am, I love clashing, after all."
She said, smiling, Rachael awkwardly avoiding eye contact.
"...I see. Would you, uh, mind teaching me to clash sometime? I always see you so happy doin' it, and I want to find out why."
She said, Aisha's eyes sparkling.
"Ooh! Of course I'll teach you how to clash! We can check out Creatures ONLINE later!"
She said, standing up immediately in eagerness, surprising Rachael, who was slightly sweating.
"Uh...sure thing. Just sit back down, alright? People are staring."
She said, Aisha sitting back down immediately.
"Ooh, but before that, we need to find you a partner! No creatures deck is complete without one! Tell you what, I've got somewhere to be after class, but the way there is right by the card shop, let's stop by first!"
She said, Rachael slowly nodding.
"Alright. Hope it's as fun as you think it is, though."
She said, as the bell rang.
"Well, as much as I don't wanna, we'd better get back to class."
Rachael told Aisha, who nodded, and gathered up her cards, while she waited for school to end.
By the time school had let out, Aisha lead Rachael, quite literally by the hand, much to Rachael's embarrassment, to a card shop.
"Huh. Cards of Fate card shop, huh? I've seen this place a few times."
Rachael commented, as Aisha practically dragged her inside of it, the clerk smiling.
"Oh! Aisha, you're back! I see you...brought a friend."
The clerk said, before slightly backing up a bit, clearly intimidated by her appearance.
"This is Rachael! She may look all mean and stuff, but she's super nice, she's my best friend!"
Aisha said, Rachael looking slightly surprised to hear that, the clerk sighing relief.
"Well, if she's friends with you, she can't be all that bad...Anyways, you here for some packs, trial decks? What do you need?"
He asked, Aisha looking around.
"Hmm...Hey, Rachael, any of these pack arts stand out to you?"
She started, before noticing Rachael just picked up a pack at random.
"They all look the same to me, but my gut's tellin' me this one."
She said, going up to the clerk and paying for it, before just ripping it open and looking through some of the cards, before one took on a bright yellow shine.
"Huh? What's goin' on? Did I break it or something?"
She asked, Aisha grinning.
"No, you found a strong card in there!"
She told Rachael, before a bright flash engulfed the store, as the card disappeared, and now standing there was a chibi version of a female with purple neon armor, and a staff resembling a microphone, wearing purple shades.
"...It appears someone has found me. I sense strength nearby."
The woman said, before looking up at Rachael.
"You are the one who pulled me, correct?"
They asked, Rachael slowly nodding, slightly in shock.
"I see. Then it appears we are to be partners from here on. I am Thundra Songstress. I hope we get along."
They said, taking a small bow, before reverting to a card that went back into Rachael's hand.
"Whoa...First pack, and I already got something cool like that? I must've been made for this game. Hey you, clerk guy. Got any trial decks that work with this card?"
She asked, the clerk nodding and taking out a trial deck box.
"This one supports the Thundra and Electrabeat archetypes, which your Songstress shares both of. It should be a perfect fit for you to start with, and there's plenty of cards you can find in packs to buff it even more."
They said, Rachael buying it immediately.
"Great. Aisha, after you get done with whatever you've gotta do, you'd better teach me everything there is to know about this, got it?"
She said, Aisha nodding.
"Of course! See you soon, Rachael!"
She promised, the two leaving the store and parting ways. Soon, Aisha made it to the building she was supposed to find, noticing it looked considerably more 'futuristic' than anything she'd seen before, and even had guards standing to protect it, one looking over at her.
"You the girl that the chief called for? Show me the message on your phone."
The guard said, Aisha just taking out her phone and showing them, as they nodded.
"Head in. They're waiting for you to start immediately."
The guard said, Aisha walking inside, only to find someone in a lab coat running around frantically, along with other workers, as a tall, well-dressed man walked in.
"Ah, Aisha. It's wonderful to finally meet you face-to-face. So you've decided to hear us out like you said you would. Come, I'll show you what you'll be doing."
They said, walking, expecting Aisha to follow, who confusedly went along with him into a room that contained a large machine, with a pod that looked like it could fit a human in it.
"Normally, headsets are used to transport your mind into the world of Creatures ONLINE. This device, however, is used to log you in and allow us to make sure your avatar stays intact, and more importantly, so we can still keep communication with you."
The man said, before realizing.
"Oh, but where are my manners. I am Lt. Wilson. A pleasure to make your acquaintance."
He said, Aisha blinking.
"Right, um, and as you know, I'm Aisha Verde. Still, you sure I'm the right fit for this?"
She asked, Wilson laughing a bit.
"Of course I'm sure. You, at such a young age, showed such promise for the clashing we adults have yet to fully grasp. Not to mention, a fellow child in the world would arouse less suspicion for your mission. Allow me to debrief you quickly."
He said, before handing her some photographs of shady individuals all with masks with digital 'C's planted on them.
"These people have been breaching the firewalls of Creatures ONLINE, and more importantly, stealing both the data creatures, and forcibly destroying player's avatars, locking them in a comatose state, since they cannot log out, but have no avatar to log out with. However, due to the system of the game, they must clash to do anything to other players. Which is why we need someone strong enough to fight them. Just like them, we cannot cheat the system, either, no matter how hard we try. So we need you, under a fresh new account, to find, identify, and deal with these people. Defeating them in a clash should give the firewall enough time to banish their avatars."
Wilson said, Aisha slowly nodding.
"I see...but wait, fresh account? Is it because my real one is too well-known?"
She asked, Wilson nodding.
"That is exactly why. However, do not fret. We've struck deals with the admins and server owners of Creatures ONLINE. You will not be alone, and will have the full accessibility of packs, like you did when you were level 300. We ask that you start immediately, so the only question left is...will you help us, and Creatures ONLINE?"
He asked, Aisha thinking it over for a minute, before nodding.
"Of course. I love Clashing, and Creatures ONLINE. If people are going to try to screw with it, I'll have to do my part to protect it. After all, I've made a lot of friends in there, and don't want them to suffer that fate, either. I just have to get in the pod, right?"
She asked, Wilson nodding.
"You heard her, she's ready. Open the pod."
He instructed scientists, who started inputting buttons, as the pod opened up, Aisha walking in and laying down in it, as the pod closed again.
"Another thing, Aisha. Your username has been predetermined. You will be known as 'Clover'. For luck."
Wilson told Aisha, who smiled a bit.
"Clover...It has a nice ring to it, I like it. Well, I guess all that's left to do is log in."
She said, before starting to feel sleepy, and closing her eyes, before faintly hearing the scientists and Wilson.
"Um, sir...there's a bit of a problem."
"What? What do you mean?"
"These readings, I think someone plugged these in wrong..."
"Are you serious? That sounds dangerous! Stop the process, don't log her in!"
"It's too late, sir! Nobody programmed a stop button, she's going to log in any second now!"
"But what if she-?!"
"WELCOME TO CREATURES ONLINE. USER: CLOVER."