Chapter 6: Welcome to the Misaka family
Disclaimer: I DO NOT own To aru majutsu no index and To aru kagaku no railgun. Any similarities in this story with real life events or characters are purely coincidental.
Misaka Mikoto was moving quickly through the hallways of a hospital. After searching throughout the entire city for a certain unfortunate boy who—once again—saved her school from a group that was bent on toppling the authorities of Academy City, she was both mentally and physically exhausted. As she was frantically searching for Kamijou Touma, she suddenly received a text message from her mother that the 'idiot' have been found to be in a certain hospital ward that he usually stayed in.
She immediately rushed over to the hospital. As she passed ward after ward, she soon found herself face to face with Touma's hospital ward. She opened the door and quickly let herself in—
only to see a highly unusual sight.
Sitting in a seiza position on the bed was Kamijou Touma. A brown-haired girl who looked just like her was standing next to him. The 'sister' was wearing an armored suit. There was a group of armored suit wearing figures who looked just like Mikoto surrounding Touma. Looking over all of the figures within the room was a tall, brown-haired woman—Misaka Misuzu.
"So…you finally arrived, Mikoto." Misuzu said curtly.
"Mom! What are you doing here?! I know things look a little messed up right now but there is a very good explanation for this!" Mikoto frantically said.
"Okay…let's hear it." Misuzu replied.
"Well…you see…about this situation…" Mikoto said before finally stopping, unable to find a believable reason.
"I already know about the Level 6 Shift Project…how the 'sisters' were created in order to be killed for the sake of the experiment, how you tried but failed to stop the project, how Touma-san saved all of you, how the murderer…Accelerator, eventually had a change of heart and helped save the 'sisters', and of course the relationship or should I say relationships between Touma-san and the Misaka network." Misuzu said in a flat tone.
"You told her?!" Mikoto screeched at Touma.
Before Touma could say anything, Misaka 10032 started to speak.
"Onee-sama, the 'Savior' did not say anything…it was I who told onee-sama's mother the truth. Misaka states truthfully as Misaka seeks to prevent the 'Savior' from receiving any blame that he does not deserve. Onee-sama's mother had spotted the two of us. Even if we did lie, our position would have been very tenuous. Misaka states as Misaka tries to point out how pointless hiding the truth would have been at that point." Misaka 10032 said.
Mikoto kept quiet and stared at the ground, unable to deny what Misaka 10032 was saying.
Misaka Misuzu just let out a sigh before moving forward to hug her daughter.
"Mikoto, I know why you and Touma-san hid the truth from me. Both of you just wanted to keep me safe. But right now, the 'sisters', Touma-san and you are all standing at a crossroad." Misuzu said as she comforted her daughter.
"Mom? What do you mean by us standing at a crossroad?" Mikoto asked in confusion.
"Hmm…the way I see it, and from what I have heard for the 'sisters'…all of you have been getting involved in dangerous incidents time and again. Touma-san may just be a level 0 but he has been able to survive and became unusually strong. He now has a good job but he also faces a very high chance of dying in the incidents he keeps getting involved in. The 'sisters' are currently free from most duties given to them by the authorities of Academy City but they are still under a lot of surveillance…and you, Mikoto. While you technically face the least danger out of all of them, you may face serious harm in all those dangerous incidents you get involved in." Misuzu said.
"Mom…don't worry I'll be fine!" Mikoto said as she tried to reassure her mother.
"Though I agree about the part of that idiot facing a high risk of dying and the 'sisters' situation." Mikoto commented.
Touma coughed uncomfortably while he quickly diverted his eyes from Mikoto's.
"Well, anyway, whether the authorities like it or not, the fact is that the Misaka network is part of the Misaka family. They are technically your clones so they share your basic genetic material… though…from what I heard from Touma-san…they have all developed separate personalities." Misuzu stated.
Mikoto remained silent. It was true that after the 'sisters' were saved from Accelerator, the 'sisters' had begun to develop separate personalities. The personalities weren't very distinct yet…but they would be over time.
"Mom…what are you trying to say?" Mikoto asked slowly.
"I'm saying that I would like to find a way for both you and the 'sisters' to completely get out of the darkness. All of you, including Touma-san, are at the borderline between the bright world and the darkness of Academy City. None of the 'sisters' deserved what happened at the experiment. Mikoto, you did not deserve to be put through so much pain in a nearly impossible attempt to stop such a monstrous plan. Finally, Touma-san did not deserve to be put through so much suffering in a near-suicidal though successful bid to stop the plan." Misuzu stated seriously.
"Misuzu-san…I stopped the plan out of my own free will. I don't regret it. If I did not stop the experiment, I would never have gotten together with 10032-chan and the rest of the Misaka network." Touma said.
"I know that you do not regret it. But what I'm saying is that we should try to move the 'sisters' current position to one that is less dangerous." Misuzu said.
"But how? We can't do anything by ourselves. If we interfere too much, the authorities will just send the 'sisters' away." Mikoto said in frustration.
Misuzu then raised one hand forward.
"I come here with an offer. Recently, I just talked to your dad, Mikoto." Misuzu said.
"Dad?! What does he have to do with this?" Mikoto asked anxiously.
"Right now, he knows everything." Misuzu said.
"What?!" Touma and Mikoto yelled.
"He came up with an offer. He will register the entire Misaka network into the Misaka family register. He will also provide financial support for the entire Misaka network. This way, the 'sisters' will have some sort of support if Academy City ever abandons them." Misuzu said.
"What?! No! That's too dangerous. You and Dad can't get involved in this! I will find some way to solve this! Besides, the financial costs will be enormous!" Mikoto shouted.
"Misuzu-san, Mikoto is right…we can't let you or your husband get involved in this…it's too dangerous." Touma said cautiously.
Touma then squeezed Misaka 10032's and Misaka 19990's hands with his own.
"Besides, to enter the entire Misaka network into a family which…I'm sorry to say this but…a family which—with the exception of Mikoto—they do not know very well about…it could have severe effects on their mental and emotional well-being." Touma added.
"He's right. We can't just suddenly do something like this!" Mikoto agreed.
"Well, firstly, Mikoto, the Misaka family is actually quite rich. To be more exact, your dad is quite rich…rich enough to easily provide for about 10000 'sisters'. Therefore, even if the financial costs will likely be huge, they will not much of a problem for the Misaka family. Secondly, this is just an offer so the Misaka network is free to reject it. Both your dad and I just believe that it is a great opportunity to provide some support for the Misaka network. Besides, your dad did mention a special condition to be attached to the Misaka network's entry to the Misaka family."
"Condition? What's that?" Mikoto asked in confusion.
"Well, apparently, he wants them to get married…" Misuzu mentioned awkwardly.
"WHAT?!" Mikoto and Touma yelled as all the 'sisters' within the room jerked in surprise.
"Well…since it is technically impossible for you, me and your dad to take care of the emotional well-being of all the 'sisters'…he thought that if they each had someone to love…it would be easier for all of us." Misuzu added uncertainly.
"He can't do that! I mean…I'm dating the Misaka network." Touma protested.
"Misaka Misuzu, mother of onee-sama. On behalf the entire Misaka network, I, Misaka 10032, reject your offer. The Misaka network will never choose someone other than the 'Savior' to be our life partner. While the Misaka network is grateful for the offer to join onee-sama's family, we will not give up the 'Savior'. Misaka states as Misaka hopes she makes the network's stand clear to onee-sama's mother." Misaka 10032 said with a slight frown on her face.
"Mom…you can't do this! To break them up like that…I just can't agree to that!"Mikoto said.
Even though Mikoto has feelings for Kamijou Touma, as the 'sisters' onee-sama, she would not break them up like that.
"Misuzu-san…I mean you and your husband no disrespect but…I'm NOT giving the 'sisters' up." Touma said determinedly.
"Calm down, all of you. My husband only said that he wanted the 'sisters' to get married. He never said it had to be different people. He is aware of the relationship between the Misaka network and Touma-san. He is not the kind of person to just break them up like that. If Touma-san marries the Misaka network…then the problem is solved."Misuzu added wryly.
"Wait…get married?! I only recently started dating the Misaka network so aren't we moving too fast?" Touma said, panicked.
"Married?! Mom…they are still students…how can they get married?!" Mikoto shouted, frustrated by how ridiculous her mother's suggestion was.
"Well, Touma-san could just get engaged to them. From what Misaka 10032 told me, Touma-san promised to belong to the Misaka network, just as the Misaka network promised to belong to him." Misuzu said.
"Well…that's true. I know that I could die in any one of the dangerous incidents I keep getting involved into…that's why…when I made that promise…I made a commitment to the Misaka network that no matter what happens…I will always belong to them. I had always planned to seal it with marriage one day but for us to reach that stage will still take some time, Misuzu-san." Touma said.
'He plans to get married to them someday…should I just give up now? No! I can't think that way! That's right…I still have a chance!' Misaka thought.
"I understand. However, you were willing to completely belong to the Misaka network. Then, how about you get engaged to them first? My husband would love to register you into the Misaka family." Misuzu said while smiling all the way.
"Huh?! Register me into the Misaka family?" Touma asked.
"What?! Mom…what are you saying? You can't be serious!" Mikoto screeched in confusion.
"Well, I just thought that if you got engaged to the Misaka network, and they enter the Misaka family, we might as well enter you into the family as well. You did save my life, Mikoto's life and the lives of the 'sisters' so I thought you would make a good addition to the Misaka family. Besides, if the Misaka network accepts our offer, and you marry the Misaka network, then we will be family anyway." Misuzu said, slightly amused.
"In that case, the Misaka network accepts the offer. Misaka states with determination." Misaka 10032 and the rest of the 'sisters' in the room intoned as one.
"What?! 10032-chan, 19990-chan, girls, do you understand what you're saying? Marriage is a big deal…all of you are still underage as well…" Touma said concernedly.
"Please do not worry. Misaka states as Misaka tries to reassure the 'Savior'. Misaka is ready to devote her entire life to the 'Savior'. Misaka states with determination as Misaka tries to convey her resolve to the 'Savior'." All the 'sisters' within the room said as one again.
'They are serious about this?! So much so that they spoke as one! If the girls are ready to devote their entire lives to me, and I have already been ready to do the same for them…then getting engaged should be fine.' Touma thought seriously.
"I'll have to talk to my parents about this…I can't go and do this behind their backs. I'm prepared to get engaged to the Misaka network but I should at least inform my parents about it…especially about the entering the Misaka family part." Touma said.
"What?! Wait, you idiot! Think about it seriously!" Mikoto yelled.
"I'm thinking about this seriously, Mikoto. I'm prepared to do this if this is what is needed to let me be with the 'sisters' while allowing them to receive more support." Touma said determinedly.
"Bu—" Mikoto started but was cut off by the serious expression in Touma's eyes.
"I agree with you, Touma-san. We will have to inform your parents about this. Do you wish for me to go along with you to speak to them?" Misuzu asked.
"Yes…that would be best. I could really use the support." Touma said gratefully.
The 'sisters' then moved closer to Touma as Misaka 10032 began to speak.
"Do you truly wish to do this? Misaka asks seriously as Misaka hopes the 'Savior' is not forcing himself on this issue." Misaka 10032 stated seriously.
Holding both of Misaka 10032's hands gently, Touma then spoke.
"Yes, I truly wish to do this, 10032-chan. I wish to stay by you girls' side for the rest of your lives." Touma said.
The Misaka 'sisters' then spoke as one again.
"If that is so, the Misaka network will stay by your side until the very end of our lives. Misaka states as Misaka tries to convey the seriousness of this event."
Two brown-haired ladies walked along the passageways of a certain hospital. As they walked side-by-side, the older one looked out the window and viewed the hospital gardens solemnly. However, the younger one was clenching her fists tightly, sparks were flying around her head and she viewed the older one with slight resentment.
"Mom, what did you think you were doing?!" Mikoto hissed.
"Oh…what are you talking about? I merely informed Touma-san about the opportunity your dad and I wanted to offer to him and the Misaka network." Misuzu said with an innocent expression.
"Don't give me that! What are you and dad really after? Offering to take in the entire Misaka network under the pretense that both of you really considered them as part of the Misaka family even though you only knew about their existence just recently…and then offering to marry that idiot into the family." Misaka screeched.
Her rant attracted the attention of many curious patients and medical staff. Quickly noticing this fact, Mikoto quickly looked down as she flushed in embarrassment.
Misuzu just sighed.
"Mom…please…let that idiot off. He saved me so many times…he saved my 'sisters' when even I couldn't despite being a level 5…I am unable to ever fully repay him so the best thing I can do now is to make sure I don't add onto his burden. Besides, the 'sisters' really love him and I don't want them to be separated from him."
Misuzu sighed again.
"Mikoto, dear. Firstly, both your dad and I truly consider the Misaka network as part of the Misaka family…regardless of what you believe. Yes…it is hard to accept their existence all of a sudden but…they are all your clones…your 'sisters'…and we can't bear to abandon them."
"Besides, your dad and I both truly wish for Touma-san to join the Misaka family. He really is one-of-a-kind. Don't misunderstand; I'm not just talking about his ability. I'm talking about his nature itself…that selflessness…that kind of care, concern and love he holds for others…it's really rare to find someone like him nowadays. Considering all that he has done for us, such as saving you, the 'sisters' and me, this really is the least we can do for him."
"Mom…you said that you were saved by him…you're joking, right?" Mikoto asked, slightly frantic.
In actual fact, Misuzu already mentioned it in the hospital room but Mikoto was so focused on the entry of Touma and the Misaka network into her family that she ignored it by accident.
"Yes…just as Touma-san saved you and your 'sisters', he saved my life from…who were they again…ah! Skill-Out!" Misuzu said.
"Skill-Out?! Why did they target you? Besides, why didn't you call me but instead you called that idiot for help?" Mikoto said in frustration.
"Well…I actually have no idea why they targeted me and I actually didn't ask Touma-san to help. I just asked him about them. He also suggested me to call you but when I refused to drag you into it…well…he told me that he would come and help me instead though I didn't ask for it." Misuzu said.
"What?! You still should have called me. Yes…I know that he was stronger than me at that time. Even now, he is still stronger than me. But the difference is that I was still stronger than him in the conventional sense at that time. I would have been of more help during that situation than that idiot!" Mikoto argued.
"Look! As a mother, I just didn't want to bring my daughter trouble that I couldn't solve by myself!" Misuzu snapped.
Both became quiet at Misuzu's declaration. Mikoto couldn't find the proper words to respond while Misuzu just looked away. Mikoto then shook her head to clear her thoughts before speaking again.
"Anyway, mom…just leave him out of this. I don't want his life to become more complicated because of my family matters." Mikoto said.
"…he has already accepted my offer, along with the Misaka network. It's not just about repaying the debt our family has towards him but also because we genuinely want him to join our family. We also want to protect the Misaka network from others who would want to use the 'sisters' for their own gain. Your dad has some influence within the board of directors of Academy City. With his influence and resources, the Misaka network can be protected and receive support. Perhaps this way…they can finally be free from the darkness of this world." Misuzu said solemnly.
"Mom…you really want him to join the family that much…huh." Mikoto said.
Misuzu looked up at the ceiling before closing her eyes and putting on a mischievous smirk on her face.
"Well, I thought he was going to join our family in the past when he married you but this works too." Misuzu said, mischief laden in her voice and tone.
"Wha…what are you saying, mom?! We…we…we weren't 'like that' in the past." Mikoto stuttered while blushing furiously.
"But you like him, right?" Misuzu said with a serious expression.
Mikoto remained quiet.
"To be exact, you love him, don't you?" Misuzu said.
"Yeah…I do love him. That's why it is so difficult to see them together." Mikoto said sadly, while tears threatened to fall from her eyes.
"Well, then get together with him. Your dad and I aren't going to stop you." Misuzu said.
"What are you talking about? He is dating my 'sisters'! I'm not just going to come in between them like that! They deserve better." Mikoto said.
"But as it is right now, the status quo between all your relationships is unsustainable in the long run. When they join the family, it is going to be a lot harder for you to deal with their relationship than it is now since you have to deal with the fact that the man you are in love with is in a relationship with your 'sister' and that they are all your family members now." Misuzu said in a matter-of-fact tone.
"I know! But still, I refuse to come in between them like that!" Mikoto said.
"I never said that you had to come in between them. The way I see it…you and the 'sisters' are different individuals but in a sense…you are also like one single entity." Misuzu stated.
"Mom…what are you talking about? I don't get what you're saying." Mikoto asked in confusion.
"You all have separate personalities but your genetic makeup is the same. You are all genetically identical to each other. You all have the same type of power though your power levels are different. Furthermore, they are all derived from you. In other words, they all came from you. No matter what, this connection between you and your 'sisters' can never be broken. That is why I said that you all belong to the same entity. Now then, after hearing what I said, do you think that the fact that you and all your 'sisters' fell in love with the same person can be a coincidence?" Misuzu said.
"…Yes, if you put it that way then even though we all have separate personalities…we can all still belong to the same entity. Besides, right now, I'm also starting to wonder if all of us falling in love with the same person can really be considered a coincidence. But still, that doesn't mean that I can come in between them like that!" Mikoto said carefully.
"Mikoto, if you all belong to the same entity, and the Misaka network has decided to share Touma-san with each other—and that means they are sharing him with over 9000 other 'sisters'—than I think that there is a pretty good chance that the 'sisters' will accept you and share him with you, given that you belong to the same entity as them. To be more exact, you are the only person in the whole world, other than they themselves, who belongs to the same entity as them." Misuzu said while adopting a thinking expression.
"Mom, do you know what you're suggesting?! You are asking me to join his harem!" Mikoto hissed.
"Does that mean you're against it?" Misuzu asked calmly.
"Of cours-" Mikoto said before she stopped herself.
Mikoto's eyes widened in surprise. Why did she stop herself? After all, all she had to do was say no and her mom would probably drop the issue—though after she teased her a bit. Did she really want to share that idiot with over 9000 other girls, even if they were her 'sisters'?
"Even if it meant that you could also be with him, though you would have to share him with your 'sisters', and that you could have a life together with him, would you still reject it?" Misuzu asked.
If Mikoto could have even a little more time with him, she would be satisfied.
"How much are you willing to give up just to be together with him? If Touma-san was your dad, and I was in your position, I would've accepted. That is how much I love your dad." Misuzu stated seriously.
'How much would I be willing to give up just to be together with him?'
As the two members of the Misaka family walked back to Touma's hospital room, they were greeted with an unusual sight. The same armored figures which 'kidnapped' Touma were standing around both sides of the hallway that led to Touma's room with assault rifles in their hands. Just outside the door of the hospital room, two armored figures stood by the sides of the door. There was a certain 'sister' standing directly in front of the door.
Crossing her arms, Misaka 10032 lied onto the door. She then took out a medical report on Touma's current body condition. Reading it intently, she sighed a few times and used a pen to highlight certain parts of the text while writing notes on the report.
The revelation that it was the 'sisters', who were the girlfriends of their 'Savior', that kidnapped Touma, suddenly hit Mikoto.
"Ah! You girls were the ones that kidnapped that idiot!" Mikoto shouted.
Putting her second finger onto her lips, Misaka 10032 spoke in a soft voice.
"Onee-sama, this is a hospital and the 'Savior' is resting. As such, Misaka would like to request onee-sama to remain silent. Misaka states as Misaka hopes to quieten her excessively loud onee-sama who is disrupting the 'Savior's rest." Misaka 10032 said softly.
Mikoto flushed in embarrassment as she quickly looked down. She then asked the 'sister' a question.
"Hey, why are all of you standing outside his room like this? Won't that attract a lot of attention?" Mikoto asked.
The 'sister' turned to look at her with her brown eyes.
"We are currently guarding the 'Savior' from any possible hostile individuals. Misaka states as Misaka sighs in frustration over how many people could potentially wish to harm the 'Savior'. Besides, Misaka and the other 'sisters' are trying to give Misaka 19990 some—what people call it—'space' with the 'Savior'. Misaka states as Misaka blocks the door from any possible intruders." Misaka 10032 said while she moves to completely block the door.
"Oh? 19990-chan and Touma-san are inside the room right now? Alone?" Misuzu asked mischievously.
"What?! How could you leave those two in the room alone?" Mikoto asked in horror.
"Well, Mikoto, they are already a couple so it's fine, isn't it?" Misuzu said.
"Even so, it's still too risky." Mikoto said as she barges into the room, pushing Misaka 10032 into the room in the process.
Upon entry into the room, Mikoto sees a potentially awkward sight.
Both Touma and Misaka 19990 were in the bed with the blankets over them. Touma's arms were wrapped around Misaka 19990's waist. Misaka 19990's upper body armor was gone while her shirt was slightly unbuttoned. Touma was still wearing his shirt but his shirt was completely unbuttoned. Misaka 19990's hands were on his chest and both were looking flushed. Touma's mouth was on Misaka 19990's neck while Misaka 19990's head was slightly tilted upwards as she closed her eyes.
"What on earth are you two doing?!" Mikoto screeched.
"Huh?! BiriBiri? What are you doing here?" Touma asked, shocked that Mikoto had seen him in such a position.
"Onee-sama, what are you doing here? Misaka asks as Misaka tries not to show her frustration at her onee-sama for having ruined Misaka's special moment with the 'Savior'." Misaka 19990 asked with frustration.
"Misaka apologises that Misaka has failed to prevent onee-sama from barging into your special moment with the 'Savior'. Misaka states with a bit of shame at having failed to stop onee-sama." Misaka 10032 said while looking down onto the floor.
"Oh my? You two certainly are being quite bold, aren't you?" Misuzu asked amusedly as she entered the room.
"You idiot! What are you doing with my 'sister'?" Mikoto screeched at Touma.
"Huh? What am I doing? Wait, BiriBiri. In the first place, I'm also dating 19990-chan so this should be fine since we both agreed to it." Touma said as he defended himself.
"Yes, onee-sama. Misaka was willing to do this and was not forced to do this. Misaka states as Misaka hopes to prevent onee-sama from misunderstanding." Misaka 19990 said.
Mikoto just clenched her fists as she looked at Touma with tear-filled eyes.
"YOU IDIOT!" Mikoto shouted as she threw a lightning bolt at Touma.
Again, Mikoto's lightning attack was negated as Touma swiped away the attack with his right hand.
Mikoto's face came into Touma's sight. Tears streamed down her face as her watery brown eyes quivered.
Mikoto then ran away with tears staining her face.
"Wait, BiriBiri! Where are you going?" Touma asked.
However, Mikoto just kept running away.
"Huh? What's wrong with her?" Touma asked Misuzu in confusion.
Again, Misuzu just sighed.
"Onee-sama should be more honest with herself. Misaka states as Misaka sighs in frustration over her onee-sama's inability to be honest with herself and the 'Savior's dense mind." Misaka 10032 said.
Misaka 10032 then felt someone tap her shoulder. She looked up only to see Misuzu with a solemn expression on her face.
"10032-chan, can I talk to you for a bit?"
Mikoto was currently sitting on a bench within the hospital gardens. It was already sunset and most of the patients had already retreated back into their wards. This suited Mikoto well as it let her cry without anyone noticing her.
As the sun continued to set, the shadow of a certain crying middle school girl became longer and longer. Usually, the shadow had slight movements, showing that Mikoto was trembling. Her legs were also on the bench and she curled up, holding her knees together with her arms.
After seeing Misaka 19990 and Touma like that, it only served to worsen the wound in her heart. It was bad enough to see Touma and Misaka 10032 in such intimate positions but seeing Touma behave like that with another 'sister' served to hurt her even more.
'That idiot…he probably doesn't even know why I'm crying. He's too dense.' Mikoto thought in frustration.
"Great…how am I going to talk to him now? I can't just tell him why I cried." Mikoto muttered.
Suddenly, she felt a big hand that touched the top of her head.
"If you don't want to tell me about it, it's fine. I won't push you." Touma said.
Mikoto jerked in surprise and quickly turned to face Touma.
"What are you doing here?!" Mikoto choked out.
'Why does he have to show up now?!' was Mikoto's horrified inner thoughts.
"BiriBiri, I don't know why you cried just now but…I just want you to know that whatever happens, I'm here for you. Just like that time with Accelerator, I'm willing to help you so if you need help, just ask me." Touma said concernedly while patting Mikoto's head.
Mikoto's face became very red as she quickly looked down.
"I'm not a child so don't treat me like one." Mikoto muttered softly.
"Huh? What was that, BiriBiri?" Touma asked.
'Even so, being treated like this by him is not bad. That's right, even if he is a dense idiot...'
"Nothing. Besides that, how many times have I told you not to call me BiriBiri?!" Mikoto shouted before launching yet another electric attack against him.
"Whoa, wait a minute!" Touma said as he quickly negated the attack with his Imagine Breaker.
'he's still the idiot I love.'
Both of them had eventually settled down and sat on the bench together. Touma opened a canned drink for Mikoto and passed it to her before opening one himself—only for the drink to splash out at him.
"Fukou da…I might have accidentally shaken it." Touma cursed as Mikoto giggled at Touma's misfortune.
Mikoto just leaned back, enjoying the sight of the setting sun. Thanks to a certain 'idiot', she was already feeling much better. A thought then came to her.
"Hey…how did you fall in love with my 'sisters'?" Mikoto asked awkwardly.
"Huh? What are you suddenly asking about that?" Touma said.
"W-Well…it's just that I'm curious…that's all! T-There's no special meaning to it so don't think too much about it. Anyway, just answer the question!" Mikoto stuttered as her blush covered her face.
"Haaaa….well, I fell in love with 10032-chan during my training. It's funny because when I fell in love with 10032-chan…I fell in love with the rest of the Misaka 'sisters' as well." Touma said.
"Hah? What do you mean?" Mikoto asked in confusion.
"Well, love is a mysterious thing, really. During the training, both 10032-chan and I got to know each other very well in the sense that we came into contact with both the good and bad aspects of ourselves including our thinking and perspectives. That's why, when I'm with her, it just feels right and that I want to be with her for the rest of my life. In a sense, that is one big part of the love between 10032-chan and me." Touma explained.
Mikoto nodded her head as she processed all that Touma had just told her.
"I see. Okay, go on." Mikoto urged.
"Well, all the 'sisters' have different personalities which are currently becoming more and more unique. However, they all belong to the same entity…I used to consider this entity to just be the Misaka network but eventually I doubted it." Touma said.
"Huh? What do you mean?" Mikoto asked.
"Well, somehow, I just get the feeling that this entity does not just involve the 'sisters' but others as well. It just feels like there are some people who I have not identified yet who actually belong to this entity." Touma explained.
'The same entity…just like what mom mentioned.' Mikoto thought.
"Anyway, when I fell in love with 10032-chan, I somehow just fell in love with the entire entity. It just seemed… no felt incomplete that I just loved 10032-chan but not the entire entity itself." Touma said.
"I see…" was all Mikoto could say.
"I know this will sound a little silly but…I only realized that I was in love with the Misaka network on the day 10032-chan confessed to me." Touma said embarrassedly.
"What?!" Mikoto said in shock.
"I was probably in love with them for quite some time already but I just didn't notice it. It was 10032-chan's confession that…woke me in a sense. Well, it was the first time a girl confessed to me so it was a new experience for me." Touma said.
'This bastard…does he not realize how many girls are in love with him, other than the Misaka network?' Mikoto thought furiously.
"Hey…tell me. Now that you got together with the entire Misaka network, does it feel complete to you now?" Mikoto asked.
Touma only gave a small smile.
"Well…I'm feeling much better now. It definitely feels more complete…how should I say this…like my life has become more…right...and happy. But still, I can't help but feel like something is missing. It feels as though the entity is not complete yet…or something like that." Touma said.
Mikoto's face had—again—gone red.
'It is still incomplete? Does that mean that if I join then the entity will be complete? No! What am I thinking?! Do I really want to join his harem?!' Mikoto thought.
"Well, I can't do anything about it for now? Let's get back to my ward." Touma said.
Misaka Mikoto is currently under the stares of many individuals who are named 'Misaka'. Misaka Misuzu and the rest of the 'sisters' were currently staring at Mikoto with a curious expression. If Touma noticed it, he didn't do anything about it as he continued to hold her hand and bring her into his hospital ward.
Mikoto was prepared for the hostile stares that Touma's girlfriends would give her but she was surprised when she didn't receive such stares. Instead, the expressions on the 'sisters' faces—which was a rare occurrence since they usually didn't show facial expressions other than one of boredom—were that of curiosity. Their glances were not that of jealousy or envy but of consideration. This had definitely unnerved Mikoto, especially since her mother was doing the same thing to her.
"Well anyway, BiriBiri, I got a call from the principal and we talked for a bit." Touma said as they entered his ward.
"Oh? What did you two talk about?" Mikoto asked curiously.
"We talked about when I can go back to work—which is next Monday, by the way—and the cooperation that the academy is going to take with Judgement and Anti-Skill." Touma said.
"Next Monday?! Isn't that too soon? You should take more time off to rest. Besides, what do you mean by 'cooperation'?" Mikoto asked quickly.
"Well, I heal pretty fast so it's fine. Anyway, since Tokiwadai Academy has been attacked two times, and the attacks were repulsed with considerable strain on the authorities' part even though there was the involvement of three level 5s, including Shokuhou Misaki and Accelerator, the authorities can't leave the situation as it is. So, I'm going to take up the post of a teacher, well, sort of like a physical education teacher, to teach the students self-defence and , of course, train up their physical fitness. Oh, and I'm going to help in the management of Anti-Skill and Judgement forces within Academy City as well." Touma replied.
"What?! Isn't that too much for you to do? Besides, what did you get Accelerator's help last time?! He killed my 'sisters'! I don't trust him." Mikoto screeched.
"Well, I should be fine and about getting Accelerator's help…well since they were prepared against me by bringing more conventional weapons this time…I needed an uncertain element to disrupt their plan and that uncertain element was…Accelerator." Touma said hesitantly.
"What were you thinking, involving that murderer?!" Mikoto shouted.
"Well, it is a long story but the 'sisters' have settled things with Accelerator and now…he is helping to protect them." Touma said.
"I'm not going to understand with just this 'it is a long story' explanation!" Mikoto hissed.
"Mikoto, why don't you save it for another day? Touma-san is tired and needs to rest. The rest of the 'sisters' also want to spend some time with him. You can't just hog him all to yourself." Misuzu said mischievously.
"Mom?! W-What are you saying? I'm n-not hogging h-him to myself." Mikoto said as she flushed red beyond measure.
"Well, let's go then, Mikoto." Misuzu said.
"Fine…but YOU will answer my questions after school next Monday. Got it?!" Mikoto said to Touma, prompting him to quickly nod in agreement.
As the two Misakas left the hospital ward, Mikoto turned her head to look at Touma's ward again before leaving. However, as all her 'sisters' watched her leave, a certain 'sister' spoke up.
"Misaka wonders what would happen if onee-sama joined us and got together with the 'Savior'. Misaka states as Misaka considers the many possibilities. Will the entity finally be complete? Misaka states as Misaka ponders over this question." Misaka 10032 said with a thoughtful tone.
"I don't know but…just like you girls, I feel that if I can spend even a short period of time together with him, I would be satisfied." Mikoto said in a quiet voice.
Mikoto then spoke softly before leaving.
"If I could be together with him, I would be happy."
Well, there you have it! Chapter 6 is finally done! Wow…this is my longest chapter yet. Now then, this chapter was centered mainly between Mikoto and Touma. As you can see, when Misaka 10032 mentioned in chapter 4 about whether it really was a coincidence for all the Misaka 'sisters' and, of course, Misaka Mikoto herself, to fall in love with the same person, this was a real point of consideration. I hope that chapter 6 has provided some explanation about this point.
As Touma gets more involved into the 'politics' of Academy City, his 'fate' will get more exciting than ever, especially since there are still many more conspiracies. Well, anyway, thank you for all your support for this fic!