Author's Notes: My crack at a story for the mecha/harem anime Infinite Stratos, This story will deal with the different problem's experienced by the characters in the story and how things are behind the scenes in the world they inhabit.
I'm issuing a warning right now; There will be two male OC's in this story and if you dislike OC's or have some kind of pathological hatred for them then please leave the story right now and don't look back, if on the other hand you have no problems with them then please leave a comment if the OC's are too Gary Stuish or if I've some way fucked up by making them too overpowered in their portrayals.
I'll also be putting character bios for the different cast members at the end of every chapter so read them for a refresher of their different attributes.
Lastly I would like to thank EthernalRain for letting me borrow some of his OC's from his story "Heart of a Machine", please leave a message or PM me if I am portraying them poorly or make any mistakes with their personality or actions, Thank you again.
POV: Chifuyu Orimura
"Alright class, today we will be discussing the Equalizers"
"Orimura-sensei, what are 'equalizers'?" a student from the back asked.
"Equalizers are add-on's that come with the IS to extend their diversity. To explain further; Every IS has "preset" equipment like Orimura's 'Yukihira' sword or Alcott's 'Blue tears' missile launcher, using equalizers it's possible to balance the weaknesses of the IS like giving an IS that specializes in sniping a melee weapon to offset the weakness it would normally have. Does everybody understand?"
"Wait, then how come nobody here has them?" another student asked
"Equalizers are very hard to make since every IS core is unique, because of this it's possible for an IS to reject the Equalizer, testing takes a long time and thus it is rare for mass produced units to have equalizers attached, the only exceptions are the personal IS units which every country representative has and the Raphael Revive series which has multiple tools set as 'preset' already."
"I'd like to discuss the next part of the lesson now, does anybody have anymore questions?"
"Alright, then we should start the lesson on the IS cores themselves now"
Before I could continue the lecture I heard my phone ringing, looking at the name on the caller I.D I immediately made way for the door."
"Yamada-sensei please continue the lecture on IS cores, I'll be back after I take this phone call" I said to the other teacher and without looking back I went out of the classroom.
Making my way to the faculty offices I made sure nobody was there before I picked up the phone.
"CHI-CHAN! I MISS YOU"
*Sigh* " What do you want Tabane? I'm teaching a class right now"
"Aw, can't I just call you cause I miss-"
Stowing the phone back in my pocket I prepare to make my way back to the classroom but the phone ringing again stops me.
"What do you want now?"
"How mean Chi-chan, hanging up on your best friend"
"If you just called to say you missed me again then I'm putting down the phone"
"Wait Chi-chan I just called to give you a heads up, apparently the Dunoa corporation found the second male IS pilot and they wanna hold a conference on London to announce it"
"Second male? I thought Ichika was the only one, anyway how does this concern us?"
"They want Ik-kun to do a live presentation for them along with Dunoa's representative and see if there's any huge difference between them or something, They're also inviting the whole academy to go to London and join the coference"
"What! But I already made sure that enrolling him in IS academy would prevent him from being caught up in politics"
"I know that already Chi-chan but a lot of countries were pushing for a demonstration when they found out Ik-kun had an IS, now that there's two males who can pilot an IS and that Dunoa's representative has agreed to do a demo the countries will see it as a sign of resistance if IS academy doesn't agree to let Ichika do a demonstration too"
"Damn it! I have no choice then do I?"
"I'm sorry Chi-can, I'll see if I can do anything on my end but I think you should prepare for anything that could happen."
"One more thing to ask before you go, Why the entire IS academy? They've already seen what Ichika can do so there's no point for the students to come also"
"Dunoa's representative is enrolling in IS academy so they want to show him off to the students and teachers at the academy beforehand, I dunno why they're doing it but either way the entire school has to go. I have to go now, by Chi-chan!"
Putting down the phone I slowly made my way back to the classroom.
Damn it! It's been one headache after another; first my brother's pegged as the only male IS pilot and then I'm scrambling to enroll him here before scientists start dissecting him, next an unmanned IS drone attack's the tournament and he nearly get's killed, and now I have to deal with THIS! life's just been great these last two month's hasn't it?
Straightening myself up before entering the classroom I open the door and announce the inevitable trip.
"Alright class listen up, I have an announcement to make…
Time skip: 1 week later
The airport was crowded as we made our way to our flight, according to a text message from Tabane I got last night all the representative candidates for the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd years and one teacher from each year to chaperone would get a small private plane while the rest of the student's would ride a bigger one, apparently it's to keep the representatives safer but it just made them bigger targets in my opinion.
The only representative candidates for this year are Ichika, Cecilia and Rin but Tabane told me to keep Houki around just in case something happens.
"Alright Class, go to the number assigned to you and we'll meet up at the airport entrance when we arrive in London, is that understood?"
"Good, now have a safe trip"
As the others were leaving for their planes I grabbed Houki and held her back before she could leave
"What's wrong sensei, did I get the wrong ticket?"
"You could say that, you're not going on the plane with the others"
"Huh, why not? Am I being left behind?" she said in an alarmed tone
"No, your sister told me to keep an eye on you so she pulled some strings and got you on the plane me and the others are taking."
"Yes, your sister, now get your luggage and come with me"
Making our way to the representative group I caught all three of them giving me strange looks so I decided to explain.
"Due to special circumstances Shinonono will be taking the same plane as us, I can't tell you why so don't ask and just follow me"
As we made our way to the plane I noticed that Cecilia and Rin's faces turned into a grimace.
Probably sad they have more competition to deal with on the plane, how Ichika can be so dense to their blatant flirting is beyond me.
Arriving at the plane I noticed that despite the large Interior there were just six seats which occupied the center left and right which were separated by two's, with Cecilia dragging Ichika to the chairs on the right side and me taking the center, Houki and Rin wee forced to take the left, glaring all the while at the yellow haired girl.
As the flight took off I started to feel my eyelids dropping and before I knew it I had gone to sleep.
POV: Ichika Orimura
Why is this happening to me? I was an ordinary high school student and now I'm going to London for some kind of demo! I know I'm the only guy who can pilot an IS but I didn't think I'd have to be involved in politics, where has my ordinary life gone! I thought as I clinged to my seat in desperation.
"What's wrong Ichika-san are you airsick?"
"No, I'm alright Cecilia-san I'm just nervous that's all, It's just that I have a hard enough time in training classes and now I have to make a demonstration in front of the different country representatives!"
"Don't worry Ichika-san I already said that I'd help you with your presentation right? Just remember, I get to go out with you around London after we're done" Cecilia said with an 'I hope you didn't forget' look on her face.
"Don't worry Cecilia-san I didn't forget, I'm still nervous about the demo though" I said in reply to her questioning stare. I wonder why she wants to go out with me though? Maybe she wants to get back at me for that 'worst cuisine award' joke I said about England at the start of the school year, it's either that or she wants to help calm me down for the demo.
"Hey, you two lovebirds quiet down over there, some of us are trying to get some sleep" I hear Chifuyu-nee say in an irritated tone before she went back to sleep.
"LOVEBIRDS!" I hear two voices at the left yell.
Suddenly I hear two pairs footsteps signaling my doom getting closer and closer to my seat.
Uh-oh, Houki and Rin are mad again, I better explain fast or I'll get in trouble, or worse, they might wake up Chifuyu-nee again! I thought in a panic.
"Ichika what is the meaning of this! Why did you keep this a secret?" Houki said in an angry voice.
'You better be prepared for the punishment of keeping secrets Ichika" Rin said while summoning the arm of her IS Shenlong
Oi, how can she summon her IS while were on this plane?
"C-C-Calm down you two, Chifuyu-nee's just irritated cause she hasn't gotten much sleep lately cause of the conference, Cecilia-san and I are NOT lovers"
"Not lovers? But Ichika-san didn't you promise to take me out on a date once we reached London?"
Please Cecilia-san don't make things any worse than they are now.
"I'm just going with her around London once she finishes helping me with the demo, She's just doing it to help me calm down, now please go back to your seats before Chifuyu-nee wake-"
Taking my eyes off the two angry girls in front of me I look to the left and see Chifuyu-nee rising from her seat with an angry (not to mention scary) look on her face.
"Orimura, what did I say about keeping quiet earlier?" she said as she walked closer to my seat.
"W-wait Chifuyu-nee It was Houki and-"
"Shinonono and Huang are sleeping in their seats"
Mouth hanging agape I quickly look past her and see that (somehow) Houki and Rin made it to their seats and were pretending to sleep.
How did they get to their seats without me noticing! Damn it it I've been abandoned, TRAITORS!
"I-I can explain Chifuyu-nee, you see-"
Taking action before I could even explain myself the irate woman smacked me at the top of my head.
Ow! Even if you're a teacher can you really smack your student's on the head like that?
"It's Orimura-sensei not Chifuyu-nee" she said as if justifying her actions.
"Orimura-sensei" I said putting emphasis on the name "As I said earlier it was Houki and-"
'Ahhhhh, that was a great nap, don't you think so Houki-san?" Rin said as she 'got up' from her 'nap'
"Why yes, it was very refreshing Lingyin-san" Houki said also 'waking up' from her 'nap'
Looking at the scene behind her, Chifuyu-nee looked back towards me with an unamused look on her face.
"You were saying Orimura?"
TRAITORS! It wasn't enough that you leave me, now you purposely try to pin me for the entire thing!
Unfortunately their little stunt caused me to go quiet and before I knew it I was being told to seiza sit on the floor for the rest of the flight.
"WAIT! Orimura-sensei, I was the one talking to Ichika-san so if you want to punish anyone it should be me" Cecilia said suddenly rising up to my defense.
Thank you Cecilia-san, you are my only ally in this dark moment.
"Alright then if that's what you want" Chifuyu-nee said as she went back to her seat.
Looking like she was about to cry, Cecilia went to the corner and sat down knee first on the floor.
As I prepared to sit down and think of a way to repay Cecilia-san (maybe I can give her another massage), Chifuyu-nee suddenly spoke out again.
"BOTH of you will do the seiza then, you can stop once the plane starts to land" she said before she went back to sleep.
Without a word I immediately stood up and sat to the left of Cecilia-san as she was doing the punishment in the corner.
"I'm sorry Ichika-san, I couldn't keep you from doing the punishment" she whispered to me in a sad voice.
"It's alright Cecilia-san, you tried and at least I don't have to do this alone" I whisper back with a smile on my face.
10 minutes in I notice that she's having a really hard time, probably cause this is the first time she's done this kind of thing.
"Cecilia-san, if you're having a hard time then you can lean on me, that should take some of the pain off your right leg at least"
"Yes, but please keep your voice down, I don't want to wake up Chifuyu-nee again"
"Yes, well then, thank you for the offer"
With a red face (does it really hurt that much?) she leaned on my right shoulder and after a while it seems she was able to relax.
We stayed that way for a while and not once did we think of the fact that Chifuyu-nee was asleep and we could stop doing the seiza, we were just too scared I guess.
End of the first Chapter of "What lies in shadows", please read and review and post any mistakes I may have done with grammar, format etc.
The point of "What lies in shadows" is to show how the characters past can cause problems for them in the present like Laura being bioengineered for war or Cecilia's childhood being stripped from her since she had to protect her family's legacy, speaking on that I'll probably have a hard time showing Rin's the most since her backstory(Divorced parents) isn't as dark or emotionally scarring compared to the others.
Another thing I'd like to point out is that despite the fact that this story has two Male OC's I'll try my best to make sure that the overarching story revolves around the canon cast and they wont steal the show or be able to solve every problem. That being said, there will be chapters that focus on the OC's past or what they're doing to show they're not just oneshot characters, once again if anyone has a problem with that then please turn away and don't look back.
I'm trying to avoid the recent trend of "boy that can also pilot an IS" stories since those seem to be getting bad feedback so don't worry about Ichika getting a copycat with the same abilities.
Lastly I would once again like to thank Ethernalrain since one of the male OC's I'll be using is his character from "Heart of a machine", please read his story since it's a nice read and easy to understand.
Chracter Bio: Ichika Orimura
Physical Attributes: A young man of Japanese descent with black hair, dark brown eyes,and average height and build. Constantly described as handsome by many females though he himself seems unaware.
Personality: A kind young man who believes in doing what's right , Ichika is the textbook case of what could be defined as a "hero of the times", though some would call Ichika overly Idealistic by being polite and chivalrous to all females despite the social changes he is not without a spine and when push comes to shove he can drop the kind attitude and fight back, these attributes are what make Ichika charismatic and earn the admiration of the girls around him.
IS: Byaku Shiki
Abilities: As the only male to pilot the IS Ichika is a unique individual and he can turn the tide of a fight if he sets his mind to it.
Combat related: With the 'Yukihira' sword equipped on his IS he is able to fight and win against tougher opponents due to it's unique ability,his other abilities involve the 'Critical boost' which allows him to quickly outmaneuver his opponents and the 'Reiraru Byakuya' which allows him to negate and possibly absorb energy attacks from his opponents. His true strength however are his friends who will assist him in any battles he may possibly fight.
Non-combat related: Ichika is (unknown to him) a very charismatic individual who can easily win over others, this stems from the fact that while he can be very kind and polite he is not afraid to fight, especially to defend his friends or family, he is also very Empathic when it comes to others problems (except when it comes to romance)
Combat related: Due to having no formal training, Ichika ignores all strategy and tends to charge in head first and hope to end a match quickly, this causes problems for him since his attack use up almost all his shield energy, Outside of the IS he only has limited Kendo training and thus he isn't that capable outside of the machine.
Non-combat related: Despite his empathic nature he doesn't seem to realize the fact that many of his close friends are in love with him, this seems to be come from the fact he thinks himself as unappealing and thus, through his eyes, there is no possible way that his friends could be in love with him.