(AN: Sorry for the wait.)

The Friend

Someone he had befriended, the one who had given him his new arm, was now missing. There was not enough evidence for the Tokyo Police Department, but he knew that the Mishima Zaibatsu, now in the hands of Kazuya Mishima, was responsible for Dr. Boskovitch's disappearance. Now he was on a quest to infiltrate the Mishima Zaibatsu and rescue Dr. B before he was shipped off to an undisclosed location.

He was in the Mishima compound, right above the arena where the Second King of Iron Fist tournament was now under way. The 'light' whose name was Jun had thrown herself into the tournament, the 'arms of death' as he had called it; she may be down there, endangering the secret within her body at this very moment. In one quick move, he could cut through the air duct and land down in the ring and rescue her.

But his vision was going. The air duct seemed to be breathing, shrinking and growing every moment. He could sense a silent scream, as though something was terribly wrong. Carefully, he drew out his katana and all at once, the screaming became audible. It was coming from the sword. He knew it had the ability to sense the presence of evil, but why was it acting this way?

"Show me what is hidden from my sight," he demanded.

All at once, the visions came on him again. Only this time, he was not caught up in them as in a swooning trance. Now he was awake and alert, looking through the eyes of a masked samurai. Before him lay a great river, with a large island in the middle: straddling that island was a castle of stone, built in the European fashion.

The land, however, was dying. The very forces of nature had been distorted and mutilated, until one could not possibly live here for at least a hundred years. He could feel it eating away at him, making him weaker and weaker.

At his side was the young woman, now fully grown. A smile was on her face, as if this evil distortion was pleasing to her.

"What is this?" he spoke, though he did not mean to speak.

"Fool!" the woman shouted. "You've walked right into a trap!"

Whether the transition indeed was painful, or, by some malignant will of the Hero Sword, the woman let out a blood-curdling scream. Before his eyes, she began to bleed out of every pore, as if her voice was causing her to bleed. Then the skin began to fall away like mud broken apart by the rushing water. Now she was nothing more than a pool of blood, sitting upon the cracked, dying earth.

It stunned him to the core and froze his blood in his veins, but he could not stop it. Then, even as he was trying to comprehend this horrendous image, the blood began to rise from the ground, as though it were pouring in reverse. He drew out his katana with his wooden hand (why was it wooden?) and slashed at the blood. It vanished, but even as he was leaving, he could feel something was not right.

Now he was back in the air ducts of the Mishima Zaibatsu. He continued on his way, checking the radio traffic on his helmet for where the doctor might be kept. Even still, he found himself being bewildered by what was happening in his brain.


He didn't know where it came from, but he knew it had to be important. Maybe he would ask Dr. Boskovitch about it after he...

"...being shipped to the facility today..." sounded over the radio. He had no time to lose! He climbed up a vertical duct and smashed his way up onto the roof. Already, he saw, the helicopter was taking off. The HUD in his helmet zoomed in to have a closer look at the occupants of the helicopter.

One of them was Dr. Boskovitch.

Moving faster than humanly possible, he ran to the edge of the building then leaped off and grabbed onto the landing rail of the helicopter with his left hand: his mechanical hand. He swung one leg up over the rail and was now climbing into the cockpit. He delivered a swift punch to one of the guards, knocking him out instantly. He took Dr. Boskovitch with his right hand, and then jumped out of the helicopter, the doctor shouting in his ear as they plummeted down towards the city of Tokyo.

Suddenly, the left arm draws out the sword and starts spinning around above his head. They caught the wind and slowly came to rest on the roof of a building.

"Oh," the doctor breathed in relief when his feet were back on the ground. "Thank you, I...I don't know how you did it, but thank you." He then looked up and saw that the helicopter was coming back around towards the building. "Hey, what about them?"

A beeping sound came from somewhere within the helmet, and suddenly the helicopter exploded in a great ball of fire.

"Perhaps we should find someplace to hide," the doctor said. "Someplace out of the open?"

"Hai," he responded.

In a safe-house of the Manji-tou, the clan leader and Dr. Boskovitch were recovering from the daring rescue mission in the midst of a forest somewhere outside of Tokyo. The quiet was relaxing for all of them, and the Manji-tou leader was less susceptible from the visions.

"I should thank you once again," Dr. Boskovitch said. "Uh, what will you do after this?"


"I beg your pardon, comrade?"

"Nothing," the cybernetic ninja replied. "You are free to do as you will."

The doctor said nothing more, but the Manji-tou leader was trying to make sense of what he had seen in the tunnels of the Mishima Zaibatsu. Something was being planned, he recalled. His sword was missing, and something important about Kenji. But this made no sense. The only one he knew who desired his katana was his former subordinate, Kunimitsu. Perhaps Kenji was someone she had taken up with to...

Of course, all this was ridiculous, since he saw the sword hanging from his belt. But still, it might happen...