Disclaimer: Any original characters are property of myself and myself only. Eyeshield 21 is a series created by Riichigo Inagaki and Yusuke Murata. All characters of Eyeshield 21 are property of the original creators, Shounen Jump and Viz Media. Any references to the NFL and it's players are copyrighted by the NFL and credited to their respective teams.
Monsters of Deimon
Chapter 1: From Across the Sea
On a cool morning near the beginning of spring when the cherry blossoms began to bloom, a young boy stood in front of Deimon High School, far back away from the crowd of young boys and girls gathering before a large billboard. It was this day that the boy was waiting for, the results of the entrance exams for the high school of his choice and the day he would finally be rid of the bane of his existence.
Sena Kobayakawa, Examinee 021. Throughout his elementary and middle school years, Sena was bullied and forced to run errands for the local riff-raff. Not your ideal childhood, but one none the less. High school was and is his hope for a much happier life that he could enjoy himself without having the local bully stealing his lunch for making him run around with a chicken with it's head cut off. Because of his short stature he refrained from approaching the board, not wanting to become lost or crushed within the mob of friends and acquaintances. A voice caught his attention and his eyes focused on a young girl waving in his direction.
"Sena-kun! Over here!"
He smiled at seeing his older childhood friend. He jogs up to the taller girl and quickly becomes reacquainted with her. Mamori Anezaki is someone Sena has known for as long as he could remember, their mother's having met at a cooking class and they have been friends ever since. Her mother being half-American, the brown haired Mamori is one-quarter American and stood at a height of 164 centimeters, almost a head taller than Sena, and topped with a set of blue eyes, genes obviously from her mother's side. She is a second year student at Deimon High School and member of the school disciplinary committee. To Mamori, Sena is like the little brother she has always wanted and it has showed in her protective streak throughout their childhood, protecting Sena from bullies.
While the two friends talk and search for Sena's examinee number on the board, a pair of demonic eyes gaze at the young man as thoughts began running through the owner's mind. The tall and extremely large young man behind him follows his gaze, the same thoughts going through his mind. They waited for the right moment to appear, patiently waiting for when the opening would show itself to them and draw them in like a bait on a hook for the hungry fish. When the girl, Mamori, began congratulating the short bot, they walked from their hiding spot and quickly approached.
The tall blonde boy with the demonic eyes smiled.
He found himself being tossed in the air by the blonde and huge boy, words of congratulations being chanted with each toss. He reveled in the feeling, having not been tossed in the air in such a matter since he was a little boy. It made him feel comfortable, a feeling of happiness spreading through him. When he finally got a good look at the pair, their clothing seemed a little off in his eyes. Both wore a uniform of some sort of sport that he did not know of; the demon-looking blonde that offered him his cell phone wearing a jersey with the #1 on the front and back and the large boy wearing #77. They seemed like a nice pair, despite the blonde's evil appearance; he even offered to let him use his phone to contact his parents and tell them the good news!
A minor altercation occurred between the blonde sportsman and Mamori when she stepped in front of the blonde named Hiruma. It was obvious that the girl did not like the boy and it showed in her attitude, or could it be that she was protecting Sena? Whatever the reason, the occurrence was watched by another young man that had arrived earlier in the day to take a self-guided tour of the property and file his paperwork to register and receive his homeroom and class schedule. It was never his intension to stop in this section of the school a second or third time, yet, at the sight of the large boy and the blonde, he could not help but stop and watch. He knew those two and almost automatically recognized those uniforms.
American Football players.
"Kurita and Himura. It's been a long time," he said to himself in English. With a smirk forming on his lips, he turned and walked away, knowing he would get his chance to meet his old acquaintances.
The following week, Sena was sitting in his new classroom feeling a little nervous and a little excited at the same time. That morning, Mamori encouraged him to make friends in high school even suggesting that he tried out some of the clubs the school housed. Mamori was always looking out for him, something that he really liked about her and appreciated. At times she could be pushy, but when he was down in the dirt, Mamori was the sister that helped him back on his feet. And now that he was in high school, he could branch out and be a man on his own.
"And now, Kobayakawa."
"Y-yes!" He stood. "My name is Sena Kobayakawa." What to say, he thought. Then it hit him. "Now that I'm in high school, I don't want things to be like middle school and be an errand boy.. No, no, I mean I want to tackle everything that I do with enthusiasm!" A round of applause followed and he sat down, sighing in relief. His words almost took everything he had in him, but he felt as if a weight was lifted off his shoulders and everything would be fine. Seems like I did it, he thought.
Until he looked back.
"I guess not," he muttered to himself, that same weight he lost sudden appearing on him once more.
As the teacher called each student alphabetically, Sena could not help but find that the seat to his right was mysteriously empty. Normally in a Japanese school, all seats in a classroom were filled with a total of twenty five student and never exceeding thirty as to prevent over crowding - a reason why ninety-nine percent of high schools were private and required entrance exams. Schools did not care for those that did not wish to actively participate in normal high school life or studies. The absence of a student next to him made him curious. When the homeroom teacher finished calling named and introductions were complete, he called attention to the class.
"As today is the beginning of a new school semester, your class was given the honor by the principal to host a foreign exchange student all the way from across the Pacific from Los Angeles, California in America. So please, welcome our guest. Young man would you please step in and stand before the class to introduce yourself?"
A mass of eyes, including Sena's focused on the door and the young man that entered. The first thing Sena noticed was that he was big. Not big, as in the size of the young boy wearing the #77 jersey from last week. If Mamori was around 165 centimeters, this guy stood at around 185 centimeters, a full head or two taller than his best friend. He was even taller than the teacher! What made him look very imposing was the form of his body. He seemed very top heavy with big and long arms and a set of legs that looked like tree trunks. Even though his body was covered by the loose fitting white shirt with tie and teal blazer, the school uniform, Sena could easily assume that the guy could look like one of those wrestlers he's seen on the television a few times. Sena had only met one American besides Mamori's mother and grandfather, but he could only assume that it was not common for American's to completely shave their heads unless they were Bhuddhist.
The young man reached into his blazer pocket, producing a pair of wire-frame glasses that enhanced the look of his dark brown eyes. To the girls, he looked very sophisticated. To most of the men, especially those who were at first intimidated by the foreigner's large size, thought he looked like a geek. The tall boy stood before the class, bowing in respect and introduced himself.
"Good morning," he said. "My name is Rick Ayasegawa. Riku if you is liking. Please do me the favor, excuse my Japanese for I have not very much spoken in a long time."
A few girls giggled at his broken Japanese and some of the boys rolled their eyes, especially three sitting toward the back. The teacher merely smiled. "Please, Ayasegawa-kun. Please tell us about yourself."
"Yes. I am fifteen years of age from Los Angeles, California in the United States. Father is half-Japanese is why I have a Japanese surname. I came to Japan before like now in a foreign exchange. I attended at Maou 13th Middle school as a first year student. I very much like the experience in which I have received there. Met very nice people and became very great friends. Only for one year I stayed and umm.. I went back to the states to continue my school." He paused to gather himself. It was obvious he was struggling with the language, especially with as much as he was saying. "I really enjoy the anime of Japan and have for many years. It is very fun hobby of mine. Sports is also what I enjoy and maybe I join a club in Deimon High school." He sighed when he finished. It looked like that took the breath right out of him.
The teacher nodded. "Very good, is that all, Ayasegawa-kun?" He nodded. "Questions, class?" A young girl raised her hand. "Yes?"
"Riku-san, do you have a girlfriend?" She blushed, embarrassed she even asked. He shook his head. The teach rolled his eyes.
"Any other question? Yes, Kobayashi-san?"
"No offense, but you look very imposing. Are all American's your age like that?" He hook his head.
"That is not true. While is true that American's are larger than Japanese in statistic, our culture is very diverse and others at my age come in many shapes and sizes. In my school, there is others whom are very skinny or shorter than what I am. Sometimes much taller or more fat."
A young man raised their hand. "Yes?"
"What made you decide to come to Japan on a foreign exchange?"
Riku smiled. "I very much love Japan and enjoy visiting. I have much roots here as I do in the States. Grandfathers both American and Japanese fought each other hard in World War as Imperial Japanese and US Marines. However, I come in this year and maybe next to earn scholarship for college. My mother encourage me very much to do so and so I shall."
"A very good answer, Ayasegawa-kun." The teach gestured toward the empty seat next to Sena. "Welcome to Japan and Deimon High School. If you will, please take the empty seat next to Kobayakawa-san and we shall go over this semester's syllabus and your scheduled classes. If you need help translating, Sena-kun should be able to help you, right Kobayakawa-san?"
"Y-yes, sir. I'll do my best."
Riku bowed to the class once more. "Thank you very much. It is very much an honor. I offer to you if you need help with English. Please, help me with how I speak Japanese. Thank you very much."
The day went by pretty fast for the foreign exchange student. Riku was glad to be in Japan for many reasons, all of which spoke about his character. Least important - Riku loved the Japanese cuisine. A native of Los Angeles and it's diverse communities, a traditional Japanese restaurant was easily around the corner and very affordable. Yet, it was still not the same as a Japanese meal in Japan, something natural born Japanese citizen that migrated to the State could attest to. Secondly, the education system and curriculum was better and more challenging. Riku was not your run of the mill foreign student; he had a goal and that was enough to push him to work hard at his scholastic abilities to reach that goal - to attend a prestigious college and make a name for himself. And most importantly...
He had friends in Japan. Friends that he missed more than anything in the world.
He could remember it as if it was yesterday. Several years back when he transfered from a Los Angeles middle school on a foreign exchange program to attend Maou 13th Middle school here in Japan. He stayed with a small respectable family that took care of him as if he was their own son, who stayed with his family back home. He was taught Japanese much more thoroughly, enough to read, write and understand most of the intricate forms of calligraphy. He fit well in Japanese middle school. In the states, he was short for someone of his age compared to children in his age group and Caucasian background. At Maou, his size was on par with the average student and he did not stick out like a sore thumb. Unless you knew him personally, you would never guess he was a foreigner. It was here when he met those three.
Kurita, Musashi and Hiruma. Unlike him, they did stick out and stick out bad. Maybe that is what drew him to them and why they became friends. Kurita was very tall and a mammoth of a Japanese for someone his age. He ate healthy, very healthy, easily consuming five to six times what he eats and more. He had natural strength and fiery passion for whatever he did, and he had a big heart and sense of caring that rival most friendships. He was a real friend to the end. Musashi was a scruffy middle schooler in a high school graduates body. At their age he was growing a beard and mustache and probably could have easily bought liquor at a market without the request for identification. He was a cool guy that could be serious at times, but what made him special was his dedication to family and his friends. And finally Hiruma, the devil boy. A tall skinny blonde that could of been mistaken for an evil being, Hiruma liked to lie, manipulate, blackmail and steal to get what he wanted. He was very energetic, always carrying some sort of firearm and smiling, showing a set of demon-like teeth and fangs. Besides that, he was someone that would do anything to achieve a goal no matter the cost and someone you could count on even when you doubt his abilities. He was a closet genius and very many people could believe such a claim considering his reputation.
Riku was their underclassman when they met him and it was he that introduced them to the sport of football. A big fan of the Nation Football League, Riku had a love for many teams such as the Chicago Bears and the Oakland Raiders. Invited over to the temple where Kurita lived with his father, Riku showed them a tape of a NFL classic game between the San Fransisco 49ers verses the Cincinnati Bengals in Super Bowl XVI.
The three of them were hooked.
When Riku had to return to the States, the four of them were training under a man named Doburoku Sakaki, a conditioning coach who had college level experience in Japanese American Football. Riku, who has experience playing Pop Warner level football in Los Angeles, was helping the other three develop their basic skills. The last he had heard of the three, they were planning on starting a club in middle school to prepare for the high school level.
And now here he stood, years later after those wonderful days standing before a door which led into the Deimon High American Football club. It was just my mere coincidence that he came across a flier posted on a wall, or plastered across the entire wall to put it more frankly, that led him here in the first place. He felt nervous, wondering if the three of them would remember him or if they knew who he was at all.
I just have to go in and hope for the best, he thought to himself.
He sucked in his courage and slid open the door quickly, surprising the large boy inside. He recognized Kurita almost instantly, he could never forget his face of the size of his body. Kurita, on his part, turned and looked at him for a long moment before his face broke into a hopeful smile. Could he remember him, he questioned in his mind.
"Are you here to play American Football?" Riku sweated.
With a sigh, he stepped in and closed the door, shaking his head as a smile broke out on his own face. Of course they wouldn't recognize him. When they last spoke, he was half of Kurita's size, now he was almost as tall as him and built like a brick house. He had a huge growth spurt these past couple years, and combined with physical conditioning and football, he became what he is now. "Kurita, it is I. You no remember me? From middle school?"
"Ah..!" He held up a finger, a light bulb appearing over his head. Then he sighed, dropping his head in shame. "Umm... I don't remember anyone like you... umm...? You don't really speak the language well, do you?"
"No, very sorry, I don't very well." He bowed, raising up and smirking at the large boy. "In no speaking it well, but do understand good. You remember football game in middle school, when I first show it to Hiruma, Musashi and you?" In the blink of an eye he was engulfed by the large boy in a bone crushing hug. Despite the pain he felt, he enjoyed the delightful cheers and greetings by his long lost friend, the smile on the gentle giant's face warming his heart.
"Riku-kun! Long time no see my good friend! I missed you so much." He placed him down on his feet, quickly putting together some tea and snacks for the two. "Oh my, we have some much to catch up on. Please, sit, sit."
"Uhh... I will." Riku scratched his bald head. "Slow down please, I am not understanding that well, yet."
He beamed a bright smile. "Okay, I will." He poured him some tea. "So, you just recently came to Deimon High?"
"Yes, I have. Very good to be here, but better to meet you, friend." He thanked him for the tea. "You is very good looking and still playing football, I see. Lineman?"
"Yes, very much so. I love American Football and I can never thank you enough for introducing it to us. Because I'm so big, Lineman is all I can play and I love it. I work hard to be the best lineman in our level." He looked at his American friend, checking out his new look. "Wow, you've really changed. I remember when you were so tiny back in middle school."
He laughed, looking embarrassed. "Well, I grow very much over years. Work hard at school and sports. It was very hot for winter this year, so I shave self bald. Looks very very cool, too." He became curious. "So, where Musashi and Hiruma?"
"Oh, Hiruma went to the store to get some snacks and some gum for himself." His face changed a little. "Musashi is.. well--"
The door suddenly burst open.
"I know that laugh." Riku said to himself in english.
"I caught one! This one is an incredible running back!" said a tall, skinny blonde boy that could be mistaken for a demon. A familiar young man was tied and gagged while carried like a sack of potatoes by the blonde. Without noticing Riku, he tossed the boy over to Kurita who easily caught him."
"S-sena-kun!" Out on nowhere Hiruma pulled out a set of guns aimed at the freshman. Sena quickly squirmed the gag off.
"I'll do it! I'll do it! Please let me do it!"
Riku stood and stepped back, watching as the pair stripped down Sena Kobayakawa to his skivvies and suited him up in pads and uniform. He could not help but raise an eyebrow at the short young boy when the quick change was finished. Number 21 and a helmet with green eyeshield. You would have to get close to the helmet and look directly into the tinted shield to see the rest of his face. Sena came off to Riku as a shy, timid young boy that was just waiting to reach out an become a man. He saw how those three guys pressured him into doing something for them, but being a foreign exchange student he could do nothing about it. Especially with the language barrier still there.
"We'd have to hide his face during games," Hiruma explained to Kurita. "Otherwise, other teams will be fighting for his legs."
"Games?" Sena swallowed the lump in his throat. "But I'm the secretary." No words, only a bazooka was enough to threaten Sena to shut his trap.
"Throw away the name Sena Kobayakawa during the games. Your codename is..." He pointed dramatically at him, showing his sharp fangs. "Eyeshield 21!"
"Eyeshield 21? I told you, I'm the secretary!"
Kurita cheered. They had a new player and secretary. "Hurray, Sena!"
"YA-HA!" Again he pointed at Sena. "Get dressed and meet back here tomorrow morning, you damn shrimp."
"But, I'm the--" Hiruma cocked a shotgun. "Yes! Early in the morning. Roger!" He was gone before the three of them realized it. Riku couldn't help but whistle, which drew Hiruma's attention to him.
"Hmph. He very fast for short guy. Will make very good running back."
His demonic smirk faltered at seeing the new guy. They stared at each other for a long moment, Hiruma's eyes squinting in mild recognition, his face leaning closer until the two were eye to eye - only because Riku was sitting on a desk to allow such a thing to happen. The piercing gaze the bespectacled American turned made Hiruma blink and step back out of reflex, something he had never done in years since he first trained under Coach Doburoku. Only one person...
"Riku? Riku Ayasegawa?" Instead of the trademark demonic smirk, a smile broke out on his face making him appear more human that other's actually realized. This was a smile only reserved for a three others, one of two of them being in the same room as him. He continued in english to make sure. "Is that really you?"
"It's been a long time, my good friend." Riku replied. The pair shook hands before being bear hugged by Kurita.
"Yay! We're back together again!"
The devil quarterback stepped back, crossing his arms. Looking at his once short friend, he could not help but feel a sense of joy at the reunion and the surprise at his new appearance. He could remember clearly that he was once the size of Sena Kobayakawa when they first met, and now this stocky person sat before him. He had been training. His face changed completely, a serious air coming about him.
"How long are you here for this time?"
"As long as I want, blondie."
"Che, that's great. So that means we can catch up later. Let me ask you just one thing, Ayasegawa." He stepped forward, pressing their noses against each other as another staring match began. "Want to join the team?"
A chuckle came from Riku's mouth, surprising Kurita. The bespectacled foreigner leaned back, a smirk adorning his lips. Like Hiruma, he gave the blonde a once over, only he snorted in amusement at some inside joke that only he knew of. His friend never changed from how he was in middle school. He was the same pusher, shover and extortionist that did whatever it took to get the job done. Even back in those days, he was the victim of his schemes and he had to admit that the guy was real good at setting people up to take the downfall. He was violent and liked to blow things up with his guns, basically an asshole that no one really like or cared for.
He wouldn't have it any other way.
"I play with you, my friends."
Yoichi Hiruma scratched behind his pointed ears. "We just need to work on your damn Japanese, you damn foreigner."
End of Chapter 1
Eyeshield 21 is an anime I recently became enthralled with. Being a rabid fan of the NFL and NCAA football, this grew on me very quickly and entertained me to no end. This is basically an alternate universe story with an original character that brings about a new side to some of the characters. This will have a lot of NFL references. The one main thing I did not like about the series was the lack of penalties, especially in the game between the Devil Bats and the Taiyou Sphinx when Monta was hit by the corners all day. I'll explain more if I get that far in the series.
Anyway, enjoy the story.