In an undisclosed location, a team of scientist were working hard on computers and holographic fields. In the middle of their workplace, a holographic globe spun slowly. The room was a mass of chatter as the scientists all give orders at one another. What were they all trying to do? Were the discovering a new planet? Far from it actually. No, they were all looking for someone. Someone very important.
One of the scientists in the room blinked as he saw something familiar. "I got him..." he muttered to himself. Then he stood up and shouted, "I found him!"
Everyone stopped what they were doing and turned to him, "You found him? What's his location?" asked another.
"According to the coordinates, latitude 33.323796 degrees North and longitude 65.566406 degrees West ," the first scientist said, "He's in Afghanistan!"
"Afghanistan?" a third scientist questioned. "So he managed to get that far? But at least we finally have a fix on his location. It's been three weeks already." He turned back to his terminal and pressed a button, "Strike Team Alpha Bravo, there is now a fix on the target's location! Sending the coordinates now! You are clear to go!"
Deep within a desert region, a lone figure walked along the sands. His body was covered in a pale brown cloak, concealing his face. The harshness of the hot weather didn't appear to bother him as he continued going forward, leaving footprints on his trail.
"Can't stop, I can't stop. I need to keep moving. Can't stop, I can't stop. I need to keep moving," were the words that he was mumbling. The only words he was mumbling. Right now, whatever was going on in his head, was twisted and warped. He had a maelstrom of emotions that he was unable to comprehend or handle. The memories of their deaths haunted him and he was mentally breaking down. He had experienced many things, many things he wanted to forget. But the only thing he could do now, was keep walking. Also, he was starting to get dehydrated. His body, as modified as it was, still required basic nutrients and water to survive. He'd run out of ration bars and his canteen was nearly empty. Only a few drops of water remained.
As he was walking, he felt the sand beginning to shake and rumble. He stopped instantly, seeing something coming from beyond the sands.
Correction: make that a lot of somethings. His augmented eyes allowed him to focus and he saw humanoid figures. Some were less human-looking and some were also mechanical. A few machines could also be seen in the distance.
"So, they've found me," he concluded. His arm reached out from under his hood and pulled it down, revealing that he was a boy no older than fifteen. His hair was cobalt blue with two strands hanging from his head like antenna. His eyes were as black as coal, hollow and soulless. Actually, not completely soulless. There was some emotionally weariness in them. The boy watched as the hoard approached him closer before they got with several feet from him.
(Insert Song –Departure –Remastered Tracks Rockman Zero Mythos)
Before him stood a whole army. There were men with facemasks and skeletal markers on their chests, holding various weapons. Along with them were what appeared to be mechanical ninjas in yellow and red colors. Creatures that looked like a mix of animals and machines. And even machines and tank among them. The numbers looked like they went up to 1000.
He tossed off his cloak to reveal his uniform. The black jacket was dirty with blood and dust, as were the trousers. His boots were worn out from all the walking and his scarf was now in tatters. He had on a backpack he had filled with stolen supplies and he had grenades hanging from his belt and holsters for pistols and a combat knife. Around his waist was a high-tech belt with a red crystal in the center. On the crystal was XIII, which was the Roman numeral for 13.
While he had limited weapons, that did not mean his options were limited. He was a weapon himself. Lina and the NUMBERS had all died for an organization that treated them like tools. BLACK 13 was only kept because he was still useful and when he realized the gravity and the consequences of being part of such an organization, he decided that desertion was a better option.
"BLACK 13!" One of the Cyborg Mutants, Spider-Borg, called out, "There's no escape this time! Return with us now! If you do not comply we will use force! You have nowhere else to run so return the hell back now!"
"Henshin," he whispered. His Spark Core released energy and a wire frame appeared around him as pieces of armor materialized before connecting to his body. The helmet was the final component to form as it covered his head. From head to toe he was clad in a black suit of armor and the eyes on his helmet were blood red, and a V-shaped antenna was on his forehead as his tattered scarf still hung from his neck. The symbol on his left shoulder was the Roman numeral, XIII, in blood red. "Alright, let's go."
And he was like a blur as he charged at them. The battalion quickly took notice and started firing with their guns and tanks. BLACK 13 blurred quickly from each shot, avoiding each one with ease. The bullets went around his armor while the ammunition shells exploded behind him. As he jumped up into high into the air, a tank fired a shell straight at him. BLACK 13 caught in his hand with little effort and spun in the air as he descended, his leg stretching out as it kicked up some of the sand. Standing up, he saw that the humanoid portion of the army had quickly surrounded him. The closest of the GIN-SHOCKER forces became his first victim as swiftly logged the live shell into his chest and jumped over as he exploded. The others attacked, the soldiers shooting, and he used a corpse as a meat shield as he took a grenade and activated it before throwing it. The grenade landed in the middle of a circle of soldiers and exploded. Their bodies were sent flying and BLACK 13 took advantage of the chaotic distraction his grenade had made. A Cyborg Mutant tried to strike at him but he drove his fist into its chest, ripping out its heart then kicked the corpse to knock several of the Cyborg Mutants down. Leaping up to avoid bullets, he unleashed his energy whips and lashed out while spinning in the air.
Landing on one knee, he slammed his palm onto the sand. Suddenly, energy beams burst out, killing and injuring anything within their path. Looking up, he fired laser beams from his eyes and they burned through every obstacle. Standing back up, he bobbed and weaved attacks before countering with his own. The crescent energy blades on his arms and legs were an extension of himself and as a living weapon he had no qualms of using them. He flipped and beheaded one Cyborg Mutant. He surged ahead, performing a dodge-roll, and got back up to perform a sweep kick and his blades took their feet off their legs, literally. The blade had sliced right through and the heat cauterized the wounds so no blood was shed.
A large Cyborg Mutant slammed its fist down on BLACK 13 but he jumped and landed on its back. He put his hand against the back of its head and killed it with a concentrated burst of energy. He bounded off the corpse back and fired his optical lasers with deadly accuracy. While the army was overwhelming in power and numbers, they were disorganized, a fact that BLACK 13 took advantage of.
Still, this was as much a battle of wills as it was of power so he did get hit a few times but he managed a lethal retaliation. Pointing his arms forward, red energy blades jutted out and impaled a wide row of Troopers and Shinobi-Droids, killing each one in an instant as the flashed from an overload of energy. He then allowed the Energy Blades to limp and turn into whips before slicing his victims in half as they blew up in bright flashes. He spun on his heels, swing the whips around as he sliced more Shinobi-Droids that came after him. After retracting his whips, he picked up a corpse which was one whose heart he'd ripped out and stuffed the cavity with an active grenade before tossing the corpse at a few of the soldiers and Cyborg Mutants. He watched as they were taken out when it exploded, sending flesh, blood and guts flying, as the bones turned into deadly shrapnel.
A soldier tried to shoot him with a shotgun but BLACK 13 turned it on the soldier just as the trigger was pulled, blowing a hole through his throat. He took the shotgun and used it on the rest of the soldiers, shooting them in the face. Once his ammo was exhausted he swatted the shotgun up the side of a soldier and took out his combat knife. He next demonstrated his blinding speed and soldiers and Cyborg Mutants fell one after another. He twirled his combat knife in his hand and it was stained red with blood. A tank from far at a corner took aim and fired quickly. As BLACK 13 turned around, the shell made contact and exploded.
As the dust settled, it could be seen that BLACK 13 had down on one knee and had his fist to the sand, producing a red energy barrier. The moment the barrier vanished, he vanished in another blur of motion, images of him warping along the sands. Once he reached the tank, he took hold of it and lifted it over his head before throwing it down on another unfortunate Cyborg Mutant. He leapt upon the roof, tore open the hatch and looked down at the frightened soldiers before dropping three activated grenades inside. He leapt off the tank and made some distance before it exploded, pieces of it flying off and killing soldiers and Cyborg Mutants in their path. He'd just used the tank to make a lot of deadly shrapnel, taking out a huge chunk of the enemy forces.
He was down by two grenades. He then dodged before he was crushed by a Gorilla Cyborg Mutant's Gravity Hammer. He was sent flying by the shockwave with the sand going up. He frowned and rushed at the Gorilla Cyborg Mutant. It drew its arms back to strike again but BLACK 13 shot his lasers into its eyes. It howled in pain and BLACK 13 took the Gravity Hammer from it. He then spun around and slammed its head with the hammer, killing it and sending the body flying. He rushed at the remaining soldiers and used the Gravity Hammer with deadly proficiency. None of his moves were wasted. Attaching the hammer to his back via magnets, he made sure to include it in his arsenal before putting it away in a convenient sub-space pocket for storage.
He was nearly decapitated by a Shinobi-Roid sporting a Laser Saber but he disarmed it, literally, ripping its arm off and claiming the weapon for himself. He drew his combat knife and was dual-wielded both blades as he resumed killing his enemies. His combat knife was shot out of his hand and he turned to see a soldier blasting at him with a pistol that had multiple barrels that spun like a Gatling gun. He rushed and dodged more shots but the beams followed him. He used the Gravity Hammer as a shield to block but was still pushed back towards the shooter. He ran the shooter through with his Laser Saber then put the Gravity Hammer on his back before catching the gun, Vulcan Shooter, in his hand.
He chopped another Shinobi-Roid in half by the waist with his forearm and tore off the torso as the thighs fell. BLACK 13 spun around and what was left of the Shinobi-Roid's arm extended by a cord and knocked away everyone in its way. Dropping the body, he charged at another unit of soldiers shooting at him, glowing with red destructive energy as he did. He went right past them in a blur, his energized strikes blowing them all up before they had a chance to react. He jumped into the air once more, large energy orbs that were as big as cars materializing over him as he did. With a non-verbal command, the balls launched out at several more of the GIN-SHOCKER forces, vaporizing them in an instant with destructive red flashes of explosion. He positioned himself with his feet aimed downward and spun about as red energy glowed from his boots. A red blast shot out and caused yet another eruption, blowing tanks to smithereens. BLACK 13 landed in a crouch and looked up. He had taken out a large number of GIN-SHOCKER's unit, but there were still several more that needed to be dealt with. The numbers were low, but this game was no longer fun.
Standing up, he pulled energy into his Spark Core, allowing himself to glow with brighter tachyon energy. This was all he had left, but at least he would be taking them the rest of them with him. With a roar out at the heavens, a powerful wave of tachyon energy erupted in a huge burst, vaporizing everything and everyone in its path. The blast was so massive as a red dot on the Earth could be seen from the moon.
The desert was silent once again as pieces of metal and bodies laid scattered across the sands. The metal pieces were slowly dissolving away into gas while bodies turned into foam, just to get rid of all the evidence. Standing in the middle of the field was BLACK 13, his armor gone from using his last remaining power.
"I... I did it..." he muttered hoarsely to himself, "But... it costed me... everything..." His Spark Core instantly went into standby mode as his knees failed and he collapsed on the sand, face first. The winds started to grow heavy and picked up the sand around him, effectively covering the blue sky. The sandstorm swarmed all around him as he laid motionless on the ground.
Moments seem to pass as the sandstorm grew. A silhouette could be seen through the flying sands, looking very much human. As he walked closer to the unconscious BLACK 13, his full form could be seen. He was a tall man wearing the clothes of an exorcist priest. Under his hood, yellow eyes glowed ominously. The exorcist eyed the Cyborg with his hands behind his back and smiled. "So this is the boy Topper requested me to bring him?" he asked himself. "He certainly looks like he's been through hell. Well, time to repay my debt." He picked up BLACK 13 and carried him over his shoulder. With his cargo secured, he walked back to where he came from and and vanished without a trace.
The last remaining members of the battalion, Spider-Borg and Bat-Borg, walked through the sandstorm as they tried to locate the target. "Damn it!" Spider-Borg cursed out, "I can't see a thing! Hey, Bat-Borg, do you have anything?"
"This sandstorm is messing with my echo vision!" Bat-Borg retorted. "I've got nothing! For all we know BLACK 13 could be buried in all this sand by now!"
"Shit...!" Spider-Borg growled, "All of those guys got turned to shreds, and for what? Nothing! We're stuck in the middle of nowhere with all this sand, and now our asses are gonna get fried! We're dead, I tell you! Game over, man! Game over!"
"Knock it, off!" Bat-Borg snapped, knocking his partner on the side of his head. "If he's buried here then all we have to do is dig for him, right? With the rest of those grunts exhausting him, he's ripe for the picking, so quit your whining and-"
"Bat-Borg! Spider-Borg! Return to base now!" a voice ordered in their intercoms.
"General?" Bat-Borg blinked, touching his intercom, "But we haven't located BLACK 13 yet!"
"BLACK 13's signal has suddenly vanished. Also the sandstorm is screwing with our systems. Any longer in that place and you'll be the ones buried," the General replied. "Return now and await further instructions."
"Yes sir," Bat-Borg nodded in defeat. A purple portal appeared behind them and both Cyborg Mutants turned around to walk towards it.
"So BLACK 13's signal isn't found?" Spider-Borg frowned. "If that's the case, you think someone beat us to him?"
"As if," Bat-Borg scoffed, "I mean, everyone who's ever found out about GIN-SHOCKER is dead. Who else would know about us?"
BLACK 13 was still unconscious as he floated in a purple orb of mystical energy. His Spark Core was flashing softly as it was still recharging itself. Before him, the exorcist stood with a small device in hand, using the orb holding BLACK 13 to perform a full body scan.
"Fascinating," the man muttered. "The boy is biologically human. And yet... his body has been heavily modified for battle. So this is what it means to truly be a Cyborg. Half-human, half-machine, a borderline creature." He'd heard of Cyborgs when he was traveling the world, but he'd never seen one up close like this. It was remarkable, and at the same time terrifying. Heck, from what the scans were showing him, this boy could go one on one with Akasha's child, if she was fully awake that is. Hell, he could even be a match for Issa's eldest child, an assassin in her own right, not to mention a SS-Class Vampire as well. Technology was truly capable of both amazing and terrifying things.
As he was scanning the boy, a circle of light appeared in the room and another man rose out of it. He was an odd looking one, dressed in a blue overcoat worn over an orange shirt with pinstriped pants and a yellow bowtie. Perched on top of his head was a tall top hat. He tipped his hat and smiled, "I see you got my message, Tenmei."
The exorcist, Tenme Mikogami, smiled and greeted his guest, "I definitely did. What a strange young man you had me acquire for you." He asked, "So, why did you want me to bring him to you?" asked Mikogami.
"Let's just say the boy has an important destiny and I wanted to invest in it," stated Topper.
"Always the businessman," Mikogami nodded with a knowing smirk. "So what should we do with him?"
"One moment please," Topper said, walking around the orb and facing BLACK 13. He pressed his finger on the orb as it glowed with a soft light. A beam traveled from his finger and straight to his forehead. The light washed over him and vanished quickly, leaving his uniform looking as good as new. "It's done now," Topper said, removing his finger, "This boy no longer remembers anything about GIN-SHOCKER. However there are two problems with this."
"What problems?" Mikogami asked.
"The first problem is that he is now just a blank state," Topper said. "When he awakes, he will be dazed and confused, and won't even remember his own name. The second problem is that his memory block is but a temporary solution. His memories will return to haunt him, but hopefully he will be ready to deal with them when the time comes."
Mikogami rubbed his chin in thought, "You know Topper, the new school term is starting within a week. Perhaps we can have the boy stay here for the time being?"
"Really now?" Topper arched an eyebrow, "Are you sure, old friend? The moment he uses his powers GIN-SHOCKER will find this school."
"It has been pretty boring as of late," Mikogami admitted, "I could use a wildcard to liven things up in this realm of mine. Besides, I honestly detest the idea of people using children as weapons. If Akasha were here, she'd blow that organization to kingdom come after hearing what they had done to this boy. I think it would be karmic payback that GIN-SHOCKER ended up being destroyed by their greatest weapon."
"I like the way you think," Topper grinned. "He'll still need a name though. How about 'Shinichi Sanban' until he gets his memories back?"
"Interesting choice. Can I ask why?" Mikogami questioned.
"Let's just say I have a client who went by that name and leave it at that," said Topper.
"I'll have his Student ID prepared with that name on it. And I will have a new uniform and supplies ready for him," said Mikogami. "So, why did you want me to have him stay in my school?"
"To find a worthwhile reason to fight," was Topper's reason. "All his life he fought because he was ordered to."
"I see..." Mikogami nodded slowly. "Well then, he won't have to worry about that here in Youkai Academy, will we?"
"No, he will not," Topper smiled. "In this school he will find friendship, love, and a true purpose to live and fight. In this school he will face numerous opponents and achieve victory. This school, a school for monster, will also be where he regains his humanity."
"Such poetic irony," remarked Mikogami. "Then again, my school was designed to help my students learn to adapt in the human world. He will benefit from those lessons as he forges new bonds."
"Then I shall leave him in your care, Headmaster Mikogami," said Topper. "Don't let him get killed, alright?"
"I'll look after him as if he were my own child." Mikogami answered. "I also know a few people in high places. They'll look after the boy for me whenever I'm not around."
Topper smiled, "Then I leave the rest to you." He whipped off his hat and tossed it up before jumping upwards. He was sucked into his hat and the hat itself sucked itself in, blinking out of existence.
"He loves to make an exit," Mikogami remarked. He looked to Shinichi, "Now, time to enroll you, Shinichi. I'll list you under 'Special Case' and give you a scholarship so you can attend my school." The next three years of Youkai Academy would definitely be interesting.
It was going to be an interesting three years indeed.